regional news

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr (File Photo)

One of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s signature economic development programs is being downsized in his new state budget. Start-Up NY is being rebranded as other economic development projects have suffered setbacks.

The Start-Up NY program — which offered 10 years of freedom from income, business and other taxes to companies that sought to begin a business on a college campus — initially was a centerpiece of Cuomo’s big plans for more jobs in upstate New York.

Melinda Shelton / Flickr

School funding advocates are concerned that Gov. Andrew Cuomo is setting up for another political battle over school aid next year in a little-noticed provision in his new state budget.

Tim Kremer is with the New York State School Boards Association, one of the groups worried about Cuomo’s proposal to end what’s known as the foundation aid formula in 2018. The formula was set up to address a decade-old court order known as the Campaign for Fiscal Equity that said the state was underfunding schools by billions of dollars.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

Many central New Yorkers are gathering in Washington D.C. today for the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. Some are eagerly awaiting the speech from the infamously unpredictable Trump. Others are there to protest.

Great Lake Ontario National Marine Sanctuary

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has lent his support to an effort to make part of Lake Ontario a national marine sanctuary. The goal is to preserve dozens of known and unknown historic shipwrecks in the southeastern portion of the lake for further study.

Oswego, Jefferson, Wayne and Cayuga counties put together an application after the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) decided to add to its current list of 14 marine sanctuaries. Now with Cuomo's approval, the counties can submit their application for further consideration. 

eriecanalway.org

The year 2017 could be a good year for the New York State Canal System. The federal government has designated it a National Historic Landmark, and Gov. Andrew Cuomo is planning on integrating it into a proposed statewide hiking and biking route.

The historic landmark designation means the federal government recognizes the role of the Erie, Champlain, Oswego and Cayuga-Seneca Canals in the economic development of the United States. 

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

St. Joseph's Hospital in Syracuse has selected a new president and CEO for the health center. It comes at an uncertain time for the healthcare industry.

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget is not just facts and figures about what taxes to collect and how to spend them. Cuomo also has put unrelated changes into the spending plan — everything from allowing ride-hailing services to expand in the state to enacting ethics reforms.

From allowing Uber and Lyft outside of New York City to imposing term limits on lawmakers, the governor’s budget includes many items that normally would be considered policy changes and debated and approved in the regular part of the session.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

As SUNY Oswego junior Alyssa Lopez reflects on her fall semester, it's hard to forget the moment when she was on the edge of being homeless. She and her roommates got a call from the city of Oswego's code enforcement department in September to investigate the houses's front porch, which was rotting and falling apart. After one visit, the place she was calling home was condemned.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Some state lawmakers are rejecting Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposal to extend a tax on millionaires. Cuomo spent Tuesday rolling out his spending plan to individual groups of lawmakers in private briefings, then at night, released details to the public.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Some state lawmakers are rejecting Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget proposal to extend a tax on millionaires.

The spending plan was outlined to some lawmakers at a lunch at the governor’s mansion, but won’t be available to the public until later this evening.

Senate Republican Majority Leader John Flanagan said he’s against a plan by Cuomo to once again extend the tax.

“I like cutting taxes,” Flanagan said.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Greater Syracuse Land Bank recently made its 400th sale after it began selling tax-delinquent properties in 2013. The land bank's goals for the new year are to expand outside the city and address health concerns about their properties.

That 400th sale was a home in Syracuse that was listed in the Land Bank’s Home Ownership Choice program, which requires buyers to live on the property or to renovate and sell to an owner-occupant within a year. Land Bank Executive Director Katelyn Wright said most of the properties they sell are fixer-uppers.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

Several names are popping up as possible contenders to run against Gov. Andrew Cuomo in 2018. One Republican business expert is exploring that idea and attacking what he calls Cuomo’s lack of understanding of how businesses create jobs.

Harry Wilson has spent his career turning around companies headed for bankruptcy. He worked as a senior advisor of the U.S. Treasury Department under President Barack Obama, helping to oversee the restructuring of General Motors after the 2008 financial crisis.

Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is due to release his budget Tuesday. Revenues are down, and the repeal of the Affordable Care Act could cost the state billions of dollars. So what should residents expect?

Central New York Regional Economic Development Council / File

The lack of progress on creation of an inland port in the Syracuse area is frustrating central New York business boosters.

CenterState CEO President Rob Simpson says in the last six months central New York has lost out on two big opportunities to create jobs, because of lack of an inland port.

Payne Horning / WRVO News

Employees at the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant have taken the facility offline to begin the refueling process, a reality that seemed almost impossible one year ago. FitzPatrick was rescued from closure last summer when Exelon agreed to buy it after New York state approved a massive nuclear subsidy program.  

Courtesy David Irish

In Betsy Irish’s room, it’s all about the music. There is a big boom box in the corner, framed CD jackets and a special box just for Christmas music.

She’s hanging out with her dad, David Irish, at her group house in a suburb of Rochester. They’re doing one of their usual activities — reading the dictionary.

“L is for letter,” she says.

“That’s what the mailman brings, a letter,” her father answers. “You could write a letter.”

“To?” she responds.

“Who you going to write to?” he eggs her on.

Office of Assemblyman Gary Finch

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's proposal to offer free college tuition at New York's SUNY and CUNY schools for families that make less than $125,000 has garnered a lot of attention, but not everyone is receptive to the idea.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News File Photo

The city of Syracuse is adding some new technology to it’s arsenal that it hopes will help reduce crime.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Syracuse Common Council and the Syracuse City School District are looking for more applicants to fill the city’s newly created Youth Advisory Council. The goal is for the Common Council to receive recommendations from young people on proposed legislation.

Common Council President Van Robinson said the Youth Council will resemble the city’s council with various committees.

“What we’re looking for is a recommendation or suggestions from the youths themselves,” Robinson said. 

And he said those could be issues that councilors would not think of on their own.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is due to release his budget on Tuesday, and agencies that work with those with intellectual disabilities are among those hoping for more funds. They say they need help to pay workers the new higher minimum wage.

New York’s minimum wage is going up over the next few years, to $15 eventually in New York City and lesser amounts upstate. Groups that provide services for the developmentally disabled rely on Medicaid reimbursements to pay their workers, and they say they’ll have a hard time meeting the higher wages without more money from the state.

Payne Horning / WRVO News File Photo

Lawmakers from the Mohawk Valley are criticizing Gov. Andrew Cuomo for not visiting or even mentioning their area this week during his six State of the State addresses. They believe the snub comes at an especially tumultuous time for the region, where the economic recovery has been slower than in other areas of the state.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner delivered her final State of the City speech Thursday evening.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

The Syracuse Police Department held a civilian police academy this week to expose some members of the public to what it is like to be a police officer. The training was an attempt by police and the community to better understand each other.

Brandiss Pearson, of Syracuse, said she participated in the training because she has a husband who is a corrections officer and teenage children who see law enforcement differently. She asked Sgt. Derek McGork during his presentation on civilian encounters, if a police officer is allowed to racially profile someone like her son.

via Flickr

Part of the economic growth strategy Gov. Andrew Cuomo laid out in his State of the State speech in Syracuse includes the creation of high-tech jobs. Cuomo announced the state will invest $30 million into the Saab company, which will add about 250 new jobs to Syracuse and make its facility their new North American headquarters. Cuomo said the development of radar and sensing technology fits perfectly into drone industry.

"Nationwide, this is an industry that has tremendous potential," Cuomo said. "We want the home of it and the capitol of it to be central New York and it will.”

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo saved his ethics proposals for the last stop of his State of the State tour in Albany, where he released a 10-point plan to address rampant corruption that has reached his own administration.

Karen DeWitt / WRVO News File Photo

While many state lawmakers were not in attendance at Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s regional State of the State speeches, one person who is tagged along to all the six speeches, is state Republican Party Chair Ed Cox.

Cox says he’s always gone to the State of the State speeches in the past. And even though he’s not allowed in the regional events that are taking the place of a State of the State in Albany this year,  Cox is offering his opinion to reporters after speeches are over, this particular time in Syracuse.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

In his State of the State speech in Syracuse, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that planning for Interstate-81 reconstruction in downtown Syracuse will once again include studies of the tunnel and depressed highway options. Those are two options that the state Department of Transportation previously eliminated.

Members of the audience applauded when Cuomo announced the return of the tunnel and depressed highway options.

Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Syracuse Hancock International Airport will be getting a multi-million dollar makeover thanks to the Cuomo administration. Gov. Andrew Cuomo made the announcement at a regional State of the State Address in Syracuse Wednesday.

Ellen Abbott / WRVO News

Central New York’s economy continues to lag behind others across the country and in upstate, according to the CenterState CEO annual economic forecast. 

governorandrewcuomo / Flickr

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is pushing a plan that he says could cut property taxes in New York — by requiring county leaders to develop a cost-cutting plan and letting voters decide whether it’s a good idea.

As governor, Cuomo does not directly control local property taxes. But he wants to require county executives to do something about the state’s rates, which are highest in the nation. Under his plan, the county leaders would develop cost-cutting blueprints and put them on the ballot so voters could decide whether they want the reductions or not.

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