As the deadline for health insurance plan applications approaches, one agency that’s offering individuals help with the process is finding itself very busy. ACR Health in Syracuse has exceeded expectations as far as signing people up in the state healthcare exchanges.
According to navigator Brian Vanbenschoten, ACR has already helped more than 1,100 people sign up for health insurance plans that will go into effect Jan. 1. That’s 300 more than the agency anticipated at this time.
The developer behind a new bookstore and fitness center for Syracuse University will meet its construction deadline and get to keep tax breaks from the city.
Tom Valenti of the Cameron Group says they’ll break ground this week on the facility, which will be located just off of SU’s campus. They had until Friday to do so or lose the 30-year property tax break it won from the city in August 2012.
Onondaga County and the city of Syracuse are hoping to build on the success of government consolidation projects in the past to make more moves to modernize or consolidate government in the future. How the two biggest government entities in central New York will do this is isn’t quite clear, but they say they want to get the conversation going.
Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney used a snowy day in Syracuse to illustrate the idea of government inefficiency.
A small conference room at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Syracuse was recently transformed into a world of poverty. A simulation run by the Syracuse anti-poverty group Visions for Change gave 100 people a chance to see what it is like to walk in the shoes of the poor helping those participating learn a valuable lesson.
A pretend corner market was a busy spot in the simulation, but it wasn’t the pretend food or prescriptions drawing the most interest. It was the bus passes.
"Do you want a weekly bus pass?" a woman asks. "Yes, please."
Students in the Syracuse City School District are among the stars in the Redhouse Arts Center production of "The Music Man." The idea was to turn River City, Iowa into a multicultural melting pot by doing colorblind casting, and at the same time give the students real-world experience working with professional actors.
Over the past year, life has been a struggle for 16-year-old, Tajanae Lane. She has had to move from Syracuse to New Jersey then back to Syracuse after her father was arrested for robbing a bank.
With a wish of “good luck” to the new owners, the board of the Greater Syracuse Land Bank sold its first house Tuesday. The buyers of the vacant home on the 200 block of South Collingwood Ave. are Shaqir and Zahidi Halimi.
The Eastwood neighborhood home was delinquent on property taxes and seized by the land bank, one of the 88 it's taken control of so far. There are more than 3,000 vacant and delinquent properties in the city.
As ringing bells herald this Christmas season, another city church has gone silent. The West Genesee United Methodist Church in Syracuse has closed its doors, and last week it auctioned off its contents.
New York state's Workers' Compensation Board has started a sweeping effort to examine the system, and look at how it could more effectively meet the needs of injured workers and employers. It's in the midst of holding sessions where injured workers can express their opinions.
The second of three sessions was held yesterday in Syracuse, and allowed injured workers to chime in on the discussion in central New York. Fidel, Alejandro Velacqueis Perez was among those telling stories.
U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer is throwing his weight behind a Syracuse hospital's plan that could ultimately save taxpayers $1 million. Saint Joseph’s Hospital is trying to get a federal grant that will help pay for a system meant to streamline care for Medicare patients.
Probably the most interesting part of the plan is the ability for hospital staff to tele-monitor a patient who’s at home, says Schumer.
More than 100 pieces of used firefighting clothing from the Syracuse fire department is going to South America to help protect a volunteer fire department down there.
The Rotary International Club in Syracuse helped coordinate the donation of 55 protective jackets and 84 protective pants to the city of La Serena, Chile, which says firefighters there often battle flames in street clothes.
"This donation is going to very, very helpful to them in that now, at least, they have some protective clothing," the Rotary's Rev. Blessed Sikhosana.
Today is the busiest travel day of the year, with an estimated 43.4 million travelers heading home for the holidays. But some Thanksgiving travelers are getting a bit of a break this year by spending less cash to fill their gas tanks on the way to their holiday destinations.
“It’s the lowest Thanksgiving gas price we’ve seen since 2010," says central New York AAA spokeswoman Diana Dibble.
Dibble says motorists will be paying an average of $3.49 in central New York, $3.56 statewide, and $3.21 for a gallon of gas nationally. That’s down 29 cents from last year in Syracuse.
The construction of a new college bookstore on the Syracuse University Hill is in danger of losing its tax break if construction doesn’t start in the next month.
The university and the developer it selected, Cameron Group, won over Syracuse’s city council and industrial development agency (SIDA) for approval of the deal in August 2012.
But since shovels still haven’t broken ground on the project a year later, the city’s economic development agency this week voted the project in default of its contract. The developer has another 30 days to begin work.
Churches play a vital role in any community. A symposium was held on Saturday to raise awareness of the role church buildings play in downtown Syracuse, since both occupied and vacant properties impact the neighborhoods.
The Mission Restaurant in downtown Syracuse was built in the 1840s and used to be the Syracuse Wesleyan Methodist Church, which was part of the Underground Railroad. The Hotel Skyler on the Syracuse University campus was a synagogue before it was renovated with green energy and environmental design standards.
November is Lung Cancer Awareness Month, but chances are you might not know that. Lung cancer just doesn’t get some of the same attention as other types of cancer, and that ultimately leads to more deaths.
For five years, central New Yorkers have been talking about what should be done with an interstate viaduct that is reaching the end of its lifespan. The discussion is now formal, with the New York State Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration holding the first scoping session in Syracuse, meant to gather community input on the issue.
Syracuse Police have started a new policy that could help crack domestic violence cases, called the CODE, or Chronic Offender Domestic Enforcement, program.
Rebecca Thompson has answered countless domestic violence calls in her 27 years as a member of the Syracuse Police Department. Now as deputy chief of the uniformed bureau, she said she knows how it is a very personal crime, and sometimes, victims don't want to testify against a loved one, which can make it harder for prosecutors to make a case.
The Moreland Act Commission appointed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo is releasing a preliminary report on public corruption in a few weeks. The commission is charged with investigating corruption in state governmental agencies, and has already gone after the state Board of Elections and the Joint Commission on Public Ethics, or J-COPE, at recent public hearings.
There may be problems in other states for people signing up for health care under the Affordable Care Act, but things are moving smoothly in New York state, according to one organization in the midst of it. ACR Health in Syracuse says it has nothing but success stories.
Syracuse and Onondaga County's local political landscape remains pretty much intact after yesterday's election. Republicans rule the suburbs and County government; while democrats maintain a stranglehold over Syracuse city hall. Mayor Stephanie Miner won re-election easily with 68 percent of the vote against two third-party challengers, and got a surprise congratulations call from Washington.
Syracuse Republicans are just a few dozen votes shy of winning back a city office as a race for Common Council will come down to absentee ballots, but the rest of city hall remained solidly Democratic after Tuesday's election.
The two new faces we know of for sure on the Common Council are Chad Ryan in the Second District and Pamela Hunter in an at-large spot. Ryan won Pat Hogan’s old seat, who was term-limited, by beating Republican Alex Walsh with 59 percent of the unofficial vote.
The Green Party candidate running for mayor of Syracuse says the that office needs more tools to deal with a homicide crisis in the city. Kevin Bott says if he is elected, he would fully embrace the concept of community policing to get at the root of this year's rash of killings across the city.