Ellen Abbott

Reporter, Syracuse, WRVO Public Media

Ellen produces news reports and features related to events that occur in the greater Syracuse area and throughout Onondaga County.  Her reports are heard regularly in regional updates in Morning Edition and All Things Considered. 

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4:40pm

Mon May 21, 2012
Health

Technology could be key in allowing CNY residents an equal chance at healthy lives

There is a difference of up to 33 years of life expectancy depending on where you live in Central New York and there is no simple answer to creating equal health for all.

Economics, race and gender all figure into these health disparities but technology could play a major part in closing the healthcare gap found between many Americans.

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4:00pm

Thu May 17, 2012
Utica Psych Center

Utica residents try to save psychiatric center

Utica area lawmakers, activists  and residents are trying to save the Mohawk Valley Psychiatric Center.  The community is galvanizing its support of the facility, which has been in the area for over a century.

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4:15pm

Wed May 16, 2012
Regional Coverage

Laurie Fine accuses ESPN of libel

Laurie Fine speaking in Geneva
Ellen Abbott

The wife of former Syracuse University basketball coach Bernie Fine is suing ESPN. Laurie Fine accused the sports network of libel in a news conference at a resort in Geneva today.

Fine, flanked by her two daughters, a son-in-law and nephew, told reporters that her life was destroyed after ESPN covered allegations that her husband had sexually abused two ball boys.

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7:00am

Tue May 15, 2012
Regional Coverage

Mobile mortgage assistance helps those in need

A mobile command center for the state's Department of Financial Services is rolling across New York state looking to help people who may be having trouble paying their mortgage. It brings foreclosure prevention specialists to urban areas that need them.

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11:18am

Fri May 11, 2012
Regional Coverage

25 plastic bottles: SU students wear recycled materials on graduation day

A Syracuse University graduation gown- made entirely out of plastic bottles.
Ellen Abbott

The gowns may be blue, and Syracuse University's color may be orange, but commencement at the Carrier Dome this weekend will definitely have a green feel to it.  Commencement gowns are the latest environmental initiative on graduation day.

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10:25am

Tue May 8, 2012
-School Budget Series

School Budget Series: Urban schools struggle to overcome crowding and poverty

Urban schools in New York state face a special challenge. These schools need more funding to teach larger numbers of children, many of whom need special services because of poverty. At the same time, they find themselves dependent on local governments that are also going through tough budget times.

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4:22pm

Mon May 7, 2012
Regional Coverage

SRC Arena: Caught in a public/private partnership

Monday's Onondaga County budget hearing.
Ellen Abbott

Onondaga Community College continues to turn over information regarding the SRC Arena, and three other not-for-profit entities, to county lawmakers who requested it last week. The flap over this financial information and its availability to the public is the result of a new world of public/private partnerships.

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10:00am

Mon May 7, 2012
Regional Coverage

More sales tax revenue could mean more investment in Syracuse

More  projected sales tax revenue for the City of Syracuse could mean some new programs, including seed money for a new downtown senior center.  Lawmakers say they want  the extra spending to be an investment in the city.

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4:26pm

Fri May 4, 2012
Regional Coverage

A food co-op for Syracuse's south side

Ellen Abbott WRVO News

A food co-op is sprouting up in the middle of Syracuse's south side.  It's a way to bring fresh and healthy food to residents of a neighborhood that can't always get it.

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7:05am

Fri May 4, 2012
Regional Coverage

Syracuse First organizes "Cuse Mob" for Saturday

Syracuse First via Twitter

Syracuse First is using a social media strategy to push it's buy local message this weekend.

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10:38am

Thu May 3, 2012
Regional Coverage

Young and old share opinions on Syracuse budget

The very young and the very old were the focus of the Syracuse City Budget public hearing Wednesday night. Citizens had the opportunity to tell lawmakers what they think of Mayor Stephanie Miner's proposed $662 million spending plan.

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10:21am

Wed May 2, 2012
Education

ADA-PEP to be eliminated for students in Syracuse

As urban school districts grapple with massive budget deficit, some programs that aren't strict academics go up on the chopping block. A program in the Syracuse City School District, that teaches everything from sex education to stranger danger, is slated to be cut.

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4:01pm

Tue May 1, 2012
The Upstate Economy

OCC and county lawmakers spar over SRC financial information

Onondaga Community College's reluctance to turn over financial information to county lawmakers regarding the new SRC Arena is creating some friction. It has become part of budget discussions between Onondaga County and the community college.

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9:49am

Tue May 1, 2012
Regional Coverage

More layoffs planned for the Syracuse school district

The Syracuse school district is asking for more staff layoffs. The district will make the request for more layoffs at a special school board meeting later this week.

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2:54pm

Mon April 30, 2012
Regional Coverage

City of Syracuse faces tough school budget decisions

gordasm Flickr

School spending is the focus of tonight's budget hearing in the City of Syracuse. One portion of the district proposal that's expected to sail through is the closing of a school.

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10:40am

Mon April 30, 2012
Regional Coverage

The city of Syracuse urges FEMA to reconsider flood maps

The battle raging over federal flood maps in Central New York hits a deadline today. The city of Syracuse will file a challenge to maps proposed by the Federal Emergency Management Agency which, if approved, would drive up flood insurance costs dramatically for homeowners in some of the city's poorest neighborhoods.

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4:24pm

Fri April 27, 2012
Regional Coverage

Gillibrand fights to keep flood insurance bills from skyrocketing

Ellen Abbott

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand has joined the fight to keep flood insurance bills from skyrocketing in one of Syracuse's poorest neighborhoods. The idea is to convince the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, that their latest maps are flawed.

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4:47pm

Thu April 26, 2012
Regional Coverage

New York state urges motorists to slow down in work zones

There were more than 400 accidents in road and bridge construction work zones last year in New York state, five of them fatal. The state is hoping to pare down that number this year by asking motorists to slow down in work zones.

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1:08pm

Thu April 26, 2012
Health

Organ donor registry now available online

MGShelton via Flickr

New York state is hoping that a new way to join the state's organ donor registry online will mean a longer list of potential donors. Central New Yorkers, who have had to make decisions about organ donations, are encouraging New Yorkers to log on.

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5:01pm

Tue April 24, 2012
Regional Coverage

Minimum wage hearings take place across New York state

401K via Flickr

The push for increasing minimum wage in New York state is taking place in hearings across the state. Central New Yorkers were able to chime in on the issue at a hearing in Syracuse today.

Millie Martinez of Syracuse needed help from an interpreter to tell of her plight at the minimum wage hearing in Syracuse today.

"The wage an hour is $7.75 and it is difficult for me to support my kids with that," her translator said.

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3:43pm

Mon April 23, 2012
Regional Coverage

Hillary Clinton speaks at Syracuse University

SEIU International via Flickr

10:21am

Mon April 23, 2012
Politics and Government

Will multiple primaries lead to voter confusion?

Columbia City Blog Flickr

Republican Presidential primary politics comes to New York state Tuesday. It's the first of three different primary days across the state this year. Election officials worry that all these primary days will end up confusing voters.

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4:00pm

Thu April 19, 2012

10:48am

Thu April 19, 2012
Education

Syracuse borrows millions to sustain school budget

Thomas Favre-Bulle via Flickr

The decision for the Syracuse City School District Board of Education Wednesday night was between borrowing millions or cutting hundreds of jobs. Board members chose to balance a $366 million budget by whipping out the credit card.

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3:28pm

Wed April 18, 2012
Politics and Government

Al Stirpe announces his intent to run

It’ll be election deja-vu for some Onondaga County voters this year when it comes to the 127th Assembly District seat. An incumbent who lost two years ago is jumping back into the ring.

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10:22am

Tue April 17, 2012
Politics and Government

Wendy Long takes on tax reform

The Republican candidate for U.S. Senate in New York State is taking on tax reform. Wendy Long used a tax-preparing site in Syracuse to make her point.

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10:19am

Thu April 5, 2012
Politics and Government

Governor Cuomo: Minimum wage increase still a possibility

Some New York State lawmakers are trying to reinvigorate the debate over the minimum wage. Governor Cuomo admits it could again be on the table in Albany.

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5:52pm

Wed April 4, 2012
Politics and Government

Audio: Gov. Cuomo talks transparency, other issues during stop in Syracuse

Governor Andrew Cuomo stopped in Syracuse Wednesday, fresh off the passage of the second straight on time budget under his administration. Cuomo called the $132.6 billion budget part of a series of actions that will transform New York State. 

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10:21am

Wed April 4, 2012
Politics and Government

Lawmakers will not tolerate employees stacking overtime

Onondaga County is cracking down on employees who pile up overtime pay which ultimately push their pensions higher. Reducing these payments could save the county millions of dollars in the long run.

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9:57am

Tue April 3, 2012
Regional Coverage

Warm weather brings an influx of cats

The Central New York SPCA is bracing for an influx of cats. Officials estimate more than 200 cats and kittens will be dropped off at the center in the next two and a half months. Spring is the time of year cats begin breeding and this year’s early warm weather is causing animal shelters to prepare ahead of schedule.

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