News

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Victims of childhood sexual abuse are hoping that the #MeToo movement will help them enact the Child Victims Act in New York. The measure extends the statute of criminal and civil limitations for victims beyond the current age of 23 to age 50 and adds a one-year look back window to file civil suits.

One man who says he is a former victim, and is now an advocate, said this is the year for the act’s passage.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Fees could be rising for some programs run by the city of Syracuse Parks Department. The last time the City of Syracuse increased fees for Recreation Department programs, George W. Bush was president.

New York State Police

Oswego County Legislator Shawn Doyle (R-Pulaski) has been charged with forcible touching, sexual abuse in the third degree and endangering the welfare of a 15-year-old child. All are misdemeanors. State Trooper Jack Keller says the investigation into his actions began last September.

"Parents of a 15-year-old reported what they believed at the time was inappropriate relationship between their son and Mr. Doyle and a Mr. Maroney," Keller said. 

Fort Drum & 10th Mountain Division / Flickr

Fort Drum is northern New York's largest single site employer. 15,110 soldiers and 3,722 civilians work there. Base spending is up and it's had an impact on the surrounding community.

There’s no doubt that Fort Drum remains an economic powerhouse for the North Country.

The base released its annual economic impact statement for 2017 this week. It says its spending impacted the North Country economy to the tune of $1.2 billion. That’s about 3 percent higher the estimated impact in 2016 — and it’s the first time since 2011 that that number has increased.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Democrats in the state Senate tried to force a vote on gun control legislation Wednesday, to put Republicans on the spot over some GOP senators’ resistance to the bills.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

Residents in the city of Syracuse recently weighed in on what they want the city to do about snow covered sidewalks. Now the city has outlined options to address the problem.

Corey Driscoll Dunham, Syracuse’s director of operations, said the feedback from the city’s snow safety summit shows people want the city to take a more active role in sidewalk snow removal and they said they are willing to pay a fee for it. Dunham said the city has three options: citywide municipal sidewalk snow removal, priority area snow removal, or an enhanced ordinance and city approved contractors.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Americans are starting to see some of the impact of the tax plan in their paychecks, and polls are showing more support for it in recent weeks.  But some tax experts say it may be too soon to declare the tax plan a winner.

Officials at one Onondaga County business say the tax plan is already making a big difference for its 800 employees. Suit-Kote president Frank Suits announced last week that his company is beefing up employees retirement, and increasing pay by two percent. He also said the new tax structure makes it easier to invest.

stgermh / Flickr

Advocates who want the Child Victims Act passed in New York are stepping up pressure on Republicans in the state Senate. Some GOP senators are the final holdouts on the bill that would extend the statute of limitations and open up a one-year window for victims to file civil lawsuits.

U.S. House of Representatives/Julio Urrutia

Democratic officials in the 24th Congressional District have endorsed Syracuse University professor Dana Balter to take on Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) this fall. Unseating the two-term congressman will be an uphill climb, according to Grant Reeher, a political science professor at SU and host of WRVO's Campbell Conversations.

Ken Hawkins / Flickr

The head of the state’s largest teachers union said arming teachers won’t make schools safer, but he said schools should have more protection. 

Andy Pallotta, president of New York State United Teachers, said he’s heard from teachers since the Feb. 14 mass shooting at a Florida high school, and many have expressed alarm about the idea of arming teachers.

“And to put an additional burden on them,” Pallotta said. “I don’t think our teachers would want this.”

Davis Staedtler / Flickr

A case that was heard Monday by the U.S. Supreme Court and will be decided later this year could have a big impact on public worker unions in New York.

The case, known as Janus v. AFSCME, was brought by Mark Janus, a public employee in Illinois who is challenging his state’s policy of requiring that he pay union dues to the Illinois branch of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees even though he does not want to be a member.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

Deputies with the Onondaga County Sheriff’s Office have been going through active shooter training for the past few months. Officials said they are also open to training civilians on how they should react to such an event.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Legislation that would require interior inspections of rental properties in the city of Syracuse is being held. Some on the Syracuse Common Council are divided on the issue.

Councilor Khalid Bey said Mayor Ben Walsh’s administration asked him to hold the legislation so the new corporation counsel could become versed on it over the next two weeks.

“The next agenda, we’ll be right back talking about it," Bey said. "We’ll gage where the administration is. By then, I would think that they will have determined if they need three months, six months to prepare.”

Tom Magnarelli/Courtesy Bill Bass

Two Democrats running in the 24th Congressional District are dropping out after Syracuse University professor Dana Balter secured endorsements from all four of the district's county Democratic committees, but one candidate is pledging to stay in the race.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Over the weekend, the Onondaga County Democratic Committee chose Syracuse University professor Dana Balter as their congressional candidate in the 24th District.

Balter won overwhelmingly with 73 percent of the vote. She also carried the designation for Oswego, Cayuga and Wayne counties earlier this month. The district seat is currently held by Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus), who has an advantage of about $1 million over Balter in fundraising. Balter said she will not accept money from corporate PACs and she said she is interested in small dollar donations.

Julia Botero / WRVO News File Photo

The tide may be turning in the long-running feud between the city of Watertown and its local firefighter union. The new city council continues to take steps toward resolving the legal battle has dragged on for nearly four years.

Ted Marmor

The Medicare program remains widely popular, but how well is it understood? What about the program works well, and doesn't work well? And is it under threat in the current political climate? This week on The Campbell Conversations, Grant Reeher talks with Yale Emeritus professor Ted Marmor, a leading and longstanding expert on Medicare and the politics surrounding it. 

Interview Highlights

City of Auburn

Construction is underway on a $10 million Equal Rights Heritage Center in Auburn. The goal of the facility is to highlight New York's history of promoting social and equal rights.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

Protests outside of central New York Republican Rep. John Katko’s Syracuse office have been ongoing this week, including a rally on gun control. Following last week's high school shooting in Florida, some of the protesters were teachers who said Katko is doing nothing to fix the problem.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-New Hartford) is facing a backlash regarding a statement she made Wednesday on a radio talk show that “so many people who commit mass murders end up being Democrats.” But Tenney wouldn’t go into detail about it at a media event in Onondaga County Thursday, regarding the impact of tax reform on businesses.

Mike Saechang / Flickr

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The governors of Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Rhode Island have created a coalition of like-minded states on gun control, promising to expand existing efforts to share information on illegal guns, and ultimately make progress on gun safety measures where they contend the federal government has faltered.

The four Democrats announced the formation of “States for Gun Safety” on Thursday. They plan to urge other governors to join the group at a National Governors Association meeting this weekend in Washington, D.C.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News File Photo

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-New Hartford) said Wednesday that “many” people who commit mass murder turn out to be Democrats.

Jefferson County Sheriff's Office Facebook Page

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office is hosting public classes known as C.R.A.SE. or Civilian Response to Active Shooter Events, which teach how to survive an active shooter situation. The curriculum, adopted from Texas State University, is a mix of training videos and case studies of prior active shooter incidents.

Dpt. Sheriff Carrie Mangino said there has been a reignited interest in the classes among the community following last week’s high school shooting in Florida.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Congress Beer is coming back to Syracuse.

The Haeberle Congress Brewing Company brewed its last batch of Congress in Syracuse in 1962. It had been the longest continuous brewery in Syracuse, but brewing times changed according to Onondaga Historical Association Executive Director Greg Tripoli.

“The local brewers just couldn’t compete with big brewers with refrigerated trucks for shipping. So this was really the end of the small brewers at that time,” said Tripoli.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Hearings begin next month in New York to get input on whether the state should eliminate the tip credit, which allows tipped workers to be paid a lower wage as long as they make the full minimum wage if tips are included. 

But the organization that represents the state’s restaurant owners is building support against the idea.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says reevaluating the tipped wage is a question of compensating servers more fairly. Vanessa Littles who serves patrons at Joey’s, a well-known Italian restaurant in Syracuse, doesn’t agree.

Mike Saechang / Flickr

Democrats in the New York state Senate say they will push harder for gun control bills in the wake of the Florida shooting that left 17 dead and are even considering proposing the measures as hostile amendments.

Before they left for the Presidents week break, Senate Democrats pushed for more measures to strengthen gun control in New York. The state already has one of the strongest gun laws in the nation. Known as the SAFE Act, it was passed shortly after the Sandy Hook school shooting in Connecticut at the request of Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Payne Horning / WRVO News File Photo

Reclaim New York, a self-described nonpartisan good government group with conservative connections, has been increasingly active in local government advocacy throughout the state. It's now involved in the fight over a controversial Utica project that may have political implications.

Sudipto Sarkar / Flickr

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York state’s adult smoking rate inched to its lowest recorded level in the latest numbers from state health officials.

The administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Tuesday that 14.2 percent of adults were smokers in 2016, compared to 14.5 the year before.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO Public Media

The Landmark Theatre in downtown Syracuse is celebrating its 90th anniversary. The theater has recovered from financial troubles it has had in previous years.

Landmark Executive Director Mike Intaglietta said 2017 was a breakout year for the theater with 145,000 people walking through the doors.

Onondaga Community College

Onondaga Community College is working with local manufacturers on a program that will offer training that will lead to apprenticeships and jobs - and individuals will be paid while they learn.

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