Tom Magnarelli

Reporter, Syracuse

Tom Magnarelli is a reporter covering the central New York and Syracuse area. He joined WRVO as a freelance reporter in 2012 while a student at Syracuse University and was hired full time in 2015. He has reported extensively on politics, education, arts and culture and other issues around central New York. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The American Society of Civil Engineers issued gave New York’s infrastructure and gave an overall grade of C- on its 2015 report card. Syracuse officials hope infrastructure funding will come soon from the state and federal governments.

Ryan Delaney / WRVO News File Photo

The Air National Guard wants to fly remotely piloted aircraft out of Hancock Field at the Syracuse International Airport. The change would save time and money, as the National Guard has to send its aircraft to fly from Fort Drum because of airspace restrictions.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

JetBlue Airlines is resuming nonstop flights from Syracuse to Fort Lauderdale, Florida thanks to some convincing from Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY).

Christina Callahan, the executive director of the Syracuse Regional Airport Authority said JetBlue stopped service to that destination back in 2009 because of high fuel prices. But now Callahan said fuel prices have gone down and the amount of people flying every year is up two percent from last year, for a total of two million people using the Syracuse airport.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

A multi-million dollar public space is being renovated at Perseverance Park in downtown Syracuse. Two design teams were chosen to develop the project and they held a public meeting over the weekend to gather input from the community on how the space should look. Jerry Von Eyck is the founder of !melk and his team will collaborate with Balmond Studio on the project.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Victims of past sexual abuse by Catholic priests in central New York are calling for justice as Pope Francis makes his visit to America. But the victims are limited in what they can do by New York State law.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The aging infrastructure across upstate New York has created another problem in the city of Syracuse: sinkholes in the streets. The city is expected to pay for the majority of these repairs.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Pope Francis will celebrate mass at Madison Square Garden in New York City on Friday. Some lucky central New Yorkers won tickets and will be among those in attendance.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

Onondaga County Comptroller Robert Antonacci and Syracuse City Auditor Martin Masterpole spoke to Syracuse Common Council members on Monday about the audit they recently conducted on the Greater Syracuse Land Bank. The common council will soon hold a vote to determine how and when the land bank will receive $1.5 million in funding for their 2015-16 fiscal year. The audit reported the many successes of the land bank, which acquires tax delinquent properties and has resold 188 properties thus far.

New York Invasive Species Information

bout half of the National Forest Service’s budget has been spent on fighting wildfires in the West and Sen. Charles Schumer (D-NY) said it is taking funding away from other critical programs.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The 2015 World Indoor Lacrosse Championship is being billed as "lacrosse comes home" because it is being hosted by the Onondaga Nation and the sport was invented by indigenous nations in upstate New York. The tournament runs from Sept. 18-27.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

Syracuse University professor Eric Kingson announced he will be seeking the Democratic nomination for Congress in the Syracuse-area's 24th District in 2016.

Kingson is pushing a progressive agenda leading with an expansion of Social Security. A small but vocal crowd of younger and older people came out to Kingson’s campaign launch in Syracuse and those two demographics are exactly who Kingson said he wants to connect with.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

To raise awareness on the state of poverty in Syracuse, Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) went to several food pantries and nonprofit organizations serving the poor on Tuesday. Katko said the way to reduce poverty is by reforming inner-city education.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Syracuse Common Councilor Pam Hunter, the Democratic nominee for state Assembly in the 128th district, will be running against Republican John Sharon in November.

This is Sharon’s fourth time running for the seat and he said the problems in his district are not getting any better. This time around, Sharon said he is going to push his infrastructure and jobs agenda more aggressively in public and with the media.

The Century Foundation

A new report finds that Syracuse has the highest concentration of blacks and Hispanics in poverty in the country. Officials said they are disturbed by the findings and said that policies need to change to reverse the trends.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

New York state has designated a number of schools across upstate New York as struggling and now superintendents must take action to turn them around. Public hearings began last night at Syracuse city schools to inform parents about what response they can expect from the district.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Union groups from across central New York marched in the Labor Day parade at the New York State Fair Monday morning.

The president of the New York State United Teachers federation, Karen Magee, spoke to a large crowd about the accomplishments of the labor movement including better safety conditions, weekends and the 40-hour work week. NYSUT is made up of 600,000 members who work in education, healthcare and human services.

David Stone / Flickr

Many central New York communities are considering deer management programs to curb the rising deer population. A bait-and-cull approach is catching on but some animal rights activists are against it.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) encouraged New York State Fair attendees to build on the legacy of women’s rights in New York state. Gillibrand was the keynote speaker for the fair's Women's Day on Wednesday. She said 87 percent of the American workforce has no access to paid leave in the case of a medical or family emergency.

Gillibrand has introduced a bill that would give every worker access to paid leave. It would be an earned benefit that workers and employers pay into at a rate of about two dollars a week.  

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

A $57 million renovation will turn the former Hotel Syracuse into the new Marriott Downtown Syracuse,  scheduled to open in the spring of 2016. Now, the hotel is partnering with a branch of SUNY to help train inner city residents for some of the available jobs.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

There are about 1,800 vacant buildings in the city of Syracuse, according to the Syracuse Land Bank, which steps in to stabilize a property and resell it to responsible buyers when it gets foreclosed. A recently released audit of the land bank by Onondaga County and the city of Syracuse finds that while the organization has many successes, some potential problems lie ahead.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner was on the city’s west side on Thursday, highlighting efforts of police and other officials to improve troubled neighborhoods. But some residents are upset that some neighborhoods have been struggling for years.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Today is the opening day of the New York State Fair which always has a great impact on central New York at this time of the year.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney announced on Tuesday that construction is now complete on the new Lakeview Amphitheater along Onondaga Lake. Country singer Miranda Lambert will be the opening act, scheduled to perform on September 3.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

With more than two-thirds of Oneida City School District students refusing to take the Common Core aligned exams this year, the district has one of the highest student opt out rates in New York state. But the standardized tests can provide the district with useful information that they will not have in 2015.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Syracuse’s Innovation Team is developing new infrastructure ideas for the city. Public forums are being held to gather input from the community.

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner created the Innovation Team to think up solutions to the city’s big problems. The team is funded by a three-year grant from Bloomberg Philanthropies. Each year the team will choose a priority area and this year's area is infrastructure.  

Some of the ideas the participants came up with include public Internet service and consolidated city services, such as sewer and water.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

About 100 protesters rallied outside of the federal building in downtown Syracuse on Wednesday, calling on Congress to support funding of Title X, which subsidizes thousands of health clinics nationwide, including some Planned Parenthood clinics.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) was in North Syracuse this week promoting a new bill that will help banks and investors loan more money to manufacturing businesses. The bill is meant to help keep manufacturers in the U.S. and New York state.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand was in North Syracuse on Tuesday and she responded to Sen. Charles Schumer’s decision to vote against the Obama administration’s Iran nuclear deal, which would lift U.S., China, Russia and European Union sanctions on Iran in exchange for limits put on Iran’s nuclear program.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News File Photo

Syracuse Common Councilor-at-Large Kathleen Joy is negotiating with Mayor Stephanie Miner’s chief of staff Bill Ryan, to settle a lawsuit brought by a majority of common councilors who refused to sign a computer use policy. Those councilors have been without computer access since the beginning of July. A judge rejected a petition from Syracuse councilors to make city officials restore their computer access while the two sides negotiate a new computer use policy.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Onondaga County Legislature approved the creation of a jail oversight committee in January. The legislature appointed Barrie Gewanter to be the commission’s new executive director. Gewanter has been working as the director of the central New York chapter of the New York Civil Liberties Union since 2003.

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