Karen DeWitt

Capitol Bureau Correspondent, Albany

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.

She is also a regular contributor to the statewide public television program about New York State government, New York Now.  She appears on the reporter’s roundtable segment, and interviews newsmakers. 

Karen previously worked for WINS Radio, New York, and has written for numerous publications, including Adirondack Life and the Albany newsweekly Metroland.

She is a past recipient of the prestigious Walter T. Brown Memorial award for excellence in journalism, from the Legislative Correspondents Association, and was named Media Person of the Year for 2009 by the Women’s Press Club of New York State.

Karen is a graduate of the State University of New York at Geneseo.

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9:23am

Tue January 29, 2013
Politics and Government

Miner and other mayors bring complaints about Cuomo's budget to Albany

Mayors from around the state came to complain about Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget, as the first day of legislative hearings on the spending plan kicked off in Albany. Upstate mayors, in particular, have concerns about ever growing pension payments.

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8:50am

Fri January 25, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo's "no drama" budget may still cause some theatrics

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is trying to have a no-drama budget this year, with a low-key presentation and a fiscally austere spending plan -- and no major cuts or new taxes. But, growing opposition from the teachers’ union and local governments may yet result in some sparks flying before the deal is settled in late March.

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5:58am

Thu January 24, 2013
Politics and Government

Minimum Wage Hike Stands Better Chance in 2013

Governor Andrew Cuomo has proposed raising the minimum wage as part of his budget plan, even though the increase would not cost New York State any money.  That tactic might make it easier for the proposal to become law.

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7:31am

Wed January 23, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo proposes third lean budget

Governor Cuomo unveiling the proposed 2013-14 Executive Budget and Management Plan.
governorandrewcuomo Flickr

Governor Andrew Cuomo unveiled a $142 billion state budget, that includes federal aid for post Superstorm Sandy recovery, and closes a $1.3 billion dollar budget gap.

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6:22am

Tue January 22, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo to deliver budget address

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s annual budget presentation is slated for Tuesday afternoon. It comes as the state’s comptroller, Tom DiNapoli, finds revenues are not coming to New York in quite the amount anticipated.   

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12:53am

Sun January 20, 2013
Politics and Government

Catholics worry about provisions in women's equality act

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal for a Women’s Equality Act has been praised by many legislators and women’s groups. But not everybody is applauding.

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3:15pm

Thu January 17, 2013
Politics and Government

Poll finds New Yorkers back new gun laws, but split on fracking

A new poll finds voters overwhelming support for many of the items that Gov. Andrew Cuomo is pushing, including parts of the newly enacted gun control law. 

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5:23am

Thu January 17, 2013
Politics and Government

Mental health groups concerned about parts of new state gun control law

Mental health advocates have some concerns over portions of the gun control laws approved by Governor Andrew Cuomo and the legislature this week.

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9:10am

Wed January 16, 2013
Politics and Government

State Senate coalition passes first test

The experimental governing coalition in the New York State Senate passed its first test, on the first full day of session, when senators approved a sweeping gun control package urged by Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

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5:42pm

Tue January 15, 2013
Politics and Government

New York has toughest gun control law in nation

Gov. Andrew Cuomo signs gun control bill into law Tuesday
Karen DeWitt/WRVO

Gov. Andrew Cuomo swiftly signed New York’s new sweeping anti-gun measures into law, just minutes after the Assembly finished an over four-hour long debate and voted for the bills.  

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9:36am

Tue January 15, 2013
Politics

State Senate approves toughest in nation gun laws, Assembly to act Tuesday

The New York state legislature is passing the toughest in the nation gun control laws laid out by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The Senate voted late Monday evening , and the Assembly is expected to act Tuesday morning.

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1:32pm

Mon January 14, 2013
Politics and Government

Gun control deal close in Albany

New details are emerging on gun control legislation that lawmakers say could be passed as early as today.

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4:24pm

Fri January 11, 2013
Environment

Yoko Ono, Sean Lennon deliver letter to Cuomo on last day for fracking comments

Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon protest fracking at the state Capitol
Karen DeWitt/WRVO

Anti-fracking activists, including Yoko Ono and Sean Lennon, attempted to present the state’s environmental agency with over 200,000 comments, on the last day of a public comment period on the gas drilling process.  They and other anti-fracking activists also tried to deliver a letter to Governor Andrew Cuomo.

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8:50am

Fri January 11, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo denies he's tacking left

Governor Andrew Cuomo, in his State of the State message, was widely perceived to have taken a leftward turn, with a priority list that includes gun control, abortion rights, and raising the minimum wage. The governor, though, says he hasn’t changed his ideology a bit.

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4:48am

Fri January 11, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo dampens expectations on gun control agreement

Governor Cuomo Andrew dampened expectations for a quick settlement on a package of gun control bills, saying he does not have a timeline for agreement with the legislature.

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9:22am

Thu January 10, 2013
Politics and Government

Legislative leaders praise Cuomo speech, say close to gun control deal

Legislative leaders praised Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s State of the State speech, and say they are close to an agreement on one of the governor’s top priorities -- gun control legislation.

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9:01am

Thu January 10, 2013
Politics and Government

Gun control highlighted in lengthy State of the State

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in his third State of the State message Wednesday asked lawmakers to help him “stop the madness,” and pass tough new anti gun legislation. Cuomo also focused on changes to better prepare for future "superstorms" and to approve a new women’s equality act.

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9:03am

Wed January 9, 2013
Politics and Government

Gun control talks on-going in Albany

Talks on gun control proposals between Governor Andrew Cuomo and the legislature continued Tuesday night, on the eve of the governor’s annual State of the State speech.

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1:33am

Wed January 9, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo delivers 3rd State of the State speech Wednesday

Credit governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

When Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivers his State of the State message at 1:30 pm Wednesday, he says he plans to pursue a “robust” agenda.

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8:48am

Tue January 8, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo to crack down on utility regulation in State of the State

When Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivers his State of the State message on Wednesday, it will include proposals for greater oversight of New York state’s electric utilities.

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1:31am

Tue January 8, 2013
Politics and Government

Impasse between Cuomo and state Senate on gun measures

Governor Andrew Cuomo and Republicans in the Senate remain at an impasse over gun control legislation -- just days before the governor's State of the State address. Meanwhile, the state comptroller says he’s thinking of divesting the state’s pension fund from investments in gun manufacturers.

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8:04am

Fri January 4, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo will include disaster preparedness plans in State of the State

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says he intends to propose in his State of the State message several recommendations from a disaster preparedness commission, to help the state better cope with major storms in the future.

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9:48am

Thu January 3, 2013
Politics and Government

Report from state Health Department says fracking could be done safely

New York state has been reviewing whether to allowing hydrofracking for about four years.
Matt Richmond WSKG

A document from Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration assessing the health impacts of hydrofracking, written less than a year ago, says the gas drilling process is likely safe if proper precautions are taken by the governor’s environmental agency, the Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). 

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9:19am

Thu January 3, 2013
Education

Cuomo education panel recommends more school time for children

Education commission chairman Dick Parsons presents recommendations to Governor Andrew Cuomo and his cabinet
Karen DeWitt/WRVO

Governor Andrew Cuomo’s education commission recommends extending the school day and school year, as well as all day pre-kindergarten. But the governor says those ideas could be expensive.

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5:43am

Mon December 31, 2012
Regional Coverage

NY's food pantries say hunger is growing

Food pantries and soup kitchens say they are reluctantly becoming a permanent part of the nation’s safety net for the poor. In a new report on New York’s charitable food distribution system, the groups say it is government that needs to step in and lend a helping hand.

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1:21pm

Fri December 21, 2012
Sports

Bills will play football in Buffalo for another 7 years

The Buffalo Bills will likely be staying in New York for at least another seven years, now that state and team officials have worked out a new deal.

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7:51am

Fri December 21, 2012
Politics and Government

Cuomo, legislature talk about gun control legislation

Credit Wallyg / via Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in talks with legislative leaders on a gun control package that he could introduce as part of his State of the State message on January 9.

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2:08pm

Wed December 19, 2012
Gambling

Cuomo: let market forces determine best gambling locations

In 2013, New Yorkers may get a chance to vote on whether they want to expand gambling in the state. Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the ballot proposal is unlikely to name which cities may build new casinos, though.

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7:16am

Wed December 19, 2012
Education

Cuomo takes hard line on teacher evaluation plans

Twenty-seven schools in New York have not yet submitted a teacher evaluation plan.
Credit Thomas Favre-Bulle / via Flickr

Just two-thirds of school districts in New York state have completed new teacher evaluation plans, one month before a deadline imposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The governor says if the rest don’t finish on time, they won’t see any increased school aid next year.

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8:57am

Tue December 18, 2012
Government

Cuomo calls for tighter federal gun control

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says federal gun laws need to be strengthened to prevent more shootings like the one in Newtown, Conn., but he says New York state’s assault weapons ban has loopholes that need to be closed too.

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