Syracuse

2:38pm

Tue January 28, 2014
Arts

Everson art museum cancels two exhibits amid budget deficit

The Everson Museum of Art opened in downtown Syracuse in 1968 and houses 11,000 pieces.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

The Everson Museum of Art in Syracuse has canceled two big exhibits in 2014 in an effort to stymie a large operating budget.

The museum lost $135,000 in 2013. Even by canceling two traveling exhibits slated for April and October, the museum’s leadership still predicts being in the red a total of $500,000 by the end of 2014.

The decision to cancel the exhibits was made at a board meeting this week. Had they not aborted on the two exhibits, the estimated deficit would have been $750,000.

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1:48pm

Fri January 24, 2014
Religion

Plans for Saint Marianne Cope Museum and Shrine unveiled

Sister Roberta Smith of The Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities and St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center during a digital groundbreaking of the Saint Marianne Cope Shrine and Museum that’s being built near St. Joseph’s Hospital.
Ellen Abbott/WRVO

Plans have been finalized for the new Saint Marianne Cope Museum and Shrine in Syracuse. This week, the Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities used Cope’s birthday for a digital groundbreaking, where a prototype of the center was unveiled.

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7:32am

Fri January 24, 2014
Regional Coverage

Miner focuses on city development, proposed stadium in State of the City address

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner speaks with reporters follwing her annual State of the City speech Thursday.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

Mayor Stephanie Miner is putting together a task force to consider the community and economic impacts of a new sports arena in the city of Syracuse. The mayor put the issue, which has had the town buzzing in recent weeks, in her annual State of the City speech.

"I am neither in favor of a stadium nor against a stadium, but there has to be a process where people can get their questions answered," Miner said.
 

The mayor says building a new stadium, to potentially replace the Carrier Dome at Syracuse University, is a huge decision that should be made together.

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12:04pm

Mon January 20, 2014
MLK Day

MLK Jr. day of service brings dozens to food and clothing drive

Volunteers at a Martin Luther King Jr. Day food and clothing drive in Syracuse.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Cardboard boxes lined tables and were stacked 10 feet high in the Teamsters union hall on Syracuse's north side this morning. Dozens of volunteers, from six-year-old Marielle Emmanuel to Syracuse University athletes filled them with donated clothes and food.

For the 14th year, the United Way of central New York put on a clothing and food drive in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Many spend the day remembering the civil rights leader with a day of service.

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8:54am

Thu January 16, 2014
Health

St. Joseph's Primary Care Center on Syracuse's Westside provides one-stop shop for patients

An exam room at the expanded St. Joseph's Primary Care Center-West in Syracuse.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center has expanded it’s primary care center in one poverty stricken Syracuse neighborhood. The new center will offer a single location where patients can get many medical needs met on the city’s near Westside.

The Primary Care Center-West has been around on Gifford Street since the mid-1990s. Medical Director Luis Castro says the expansion not only quadruples the size of the facility, but creates a kind of one-stop shop for patients.

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8:01am

Tue January 14, 2014
Regional Coverage

Syracuse Common Council revises disorderly houses ordinance

The nuisance property proposal was discussed at a Syracuse Common Council meeting in October.
Ellen Abbott WRVO file photo

Syracuse lawmakers have made it easier for police to get involved with problem properties. Common Councilors agreed to revise the old disorderly houses ordinance into a modern day tool for police.

Common councilor Khalid Bey says he’s heard frustration from constituents who don’t see action when they complain about problem properties.

“I had a constituent who had an ongoing problem with a gambling house," Bey said. "Six months of complaints with no real recourse. Now police have an adequate tool to deal with such a compliant.”

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9:20am

Fri January 3, 2014
Transportation

Another voice in the I-81 debate: move people, not cars

Peter Sarver of the Moving People Transportation Coalition at their kickoff event.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Another group has formed to weigh in on the future of Interstate 81’s path through downtown Syracuse. This one calling for a focus on moving people, not cars.

The elevated stretch of I-81 through downtown Syracuse is nearing the end of its 50 year lifespan. Area residents are entwined in a lengthy debate over its second life, which largely boils down to rebuild or reroute.

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5:37am

Mon December 23, 2013
Upstate hospital investigation

'Totalitarian' culture and pay questions at Upstate hospital

SUNY's Upstate Medical University and University Hospital are Syracuse's largest employer. Two top administrators have stepped down in recent weeks over compensation questions.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

In early November, Dr. David Smith resigned as president of the State University’s Upstate Medical University and University Hospital. Days before, the Times Union in Albany had reported Smith was close to leaving Syracuse’s biggest hospital to become president of Penn State University.

Instead, he’s found himself the subject of several investigations.

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8:50am

Fri December 20, 2013
Regional Coverage

Sisters of St. Francis selling campus, moving St. Marianne Cope shrine

The building that currently holds the shrine to St. Marianne Cope.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

Some big changes are coming to the Court St.campus of the Sisters of St. Francis of the Neumann Communities. It involves the sale of the campus, and moving a shrine to recently canonized St. Marianne Cope, who began her ministries as a Sister of St. Francis, in Syracuse.

The current campus on the corner of Court and Grant St. on Syracuse’s north side dates back to the 1860s, when a new order of Franciscan nuns bought the property. Over the past 150 years it’s been home to a convent, school, chapel and a day care, among other things.

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7:29am

Thu December 19, 2013
Health

ACR Health rallies to register people into state healthcare exchange

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.

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8:21am

Wed December 18, 2013
Business

Syracuse takes "first step" toward seizing old Hotel Syracuse

This will hopefully be the last winter the old Hotel Syracuse sits empty, economic development officials say.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Syracuse economic development officials have taken “the first step” toward taking ownership of the old Hotel Syracuse so it can be re-opened, in hopes this will be the last winter it sits dormant.

The construction that will re-open the shuttered building is still months away, though, as bureaucracy has to work its course first.

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1:11pm

Tue December 17, 2013
Business

SU bookstore project will meet deadline to keep tax break

An artist's rendering of the future Syracuse University bookstore complex
Cameron Group, LLC.

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.

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7:48am

Tue December 17, 2013
Regional Coverage

Onondaga County, Syracuse look to consolidate government

Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner (left) and Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney discuss their plan to consolidate government in the county.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

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.

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7:30am

Mon December 16, 2013
Regional Coverage

Simulation offers glimpse into world of poverty

A conference room plays host to about 100 people taking part in a poverty simulation.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

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."

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8:34am

Sat December 14, 2013
Performing Arts and Culture

Modernized "Music Man" production gives Syracuse student actors new experience

Josh Rodriguez leads the cast of "The Music Man" at Redhouse.
Tom Magnarelli/WRVO

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. 

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6:34am

Wed December 11, 2013
The Upstate Economy

Syracuse land bank sells its first properties

This house at 257 South Collingwood Ave. in Syracuse is the first the city's new land bank sold.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

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.

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8:35am

Thu December 5, 2013
Regional Coverage

Schumer calls for drone crash investigation to be made public

File photo
Ryan Delaney WRVO

New York's U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer wants the investigation into the crash of an Air National Guard unmanned drone to be made public.

The Air Force is investigation the crash of an MQ-9 Reaper into Lake Ontario last month while on a training flight with the 174th Air Guard Wing, based out of Syracuse. Training flights resumed two weeks after the incident.

Schumer, a Democrat, says that's alright since most drones are safe.

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10:13am

Tue December 3, 2013
Regional Coverage

Closing church auctions not only items, but memories

The church is selling off everything. The church itself will also be sold eventually.
David Chanatry NYRP-UC

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.

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8:18am

Tue December 3, 2013
Regional Coverage

Workers' Compensation Board hosts meetings to help improve services

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.

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2:25pm

Wed November 27, 2013
Health

Schumer supports St. Joseph's tele-monitoring plan

Sen. Charles Schumer stands with a stethoscope and iPad to illustrate how technology will be part of this program.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

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.

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12:30pm

Wed November 27, 2013
Regional Coverage

Syracuse fire dept. donating used gear to city in Chile

The Syracuse fire department is donating more than 100 pieces of protective clothing to a volunteer department in La Serena, Chile.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

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.

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7:42am

Wed November 27, 2013
Regional Coverage

Gas prices for Thanksgiving travel hit three year low

Syracuse winter.
Doug Kerr Flickr

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.

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7:56am

Mon November 25, 2013
Regional Coverage

New app makes plowing the driveway a breeze

Mark Hogan Flickr

Much of central New York got it’s first taste of winter this weekend. One local entrepreneur is hoping it sparks interest in a smartphone app that’ll bring a snowplow to your doorstep.

Plowz is a free smartphone app, and its creators hope it will help take the shovel out of your hands on those Syracuse mornings when you wake up to a snow clogged driveway.

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8:52am

Fri November 22, 2013
Refugee Resettlement

Unique challenges for refugees becoming entrepreneurs

Martin Butts, left, goes over Ethiopian-born Fesseha Kahsay's business plan as part of the UP Start business incubator.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

7:29am

Thu November 21, 2013
Refugee Resettlement

Refugees changing the face of an already diverse Syracuse Northside

A game of dominos at HopePrint's house on the Northside of Syracuse.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

The Innovation Trail is taking a look at how the thousands of refugees coming to upstate New York are weaving their way into the region's economy.

Turnout may be low this night because of first snow, Nicole Watts tells those gathered in her entryway. Even as she tries to explain this, there's a near steady knock on the front door.

Every Tuesday evening, this home at 129 Lilac Street on Syracuse's Northside turns into a community center.

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6:46am

Thu November 21, 2013
Regional Coverage

SU bookstore project risks losing its controversial tax break

The renderings of a bookstore and fitness center planned for Syracuse University.
Cameron Group, LLC.

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.

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9:38am

Wed November 20, 2013
Regional Coverage

Sacred places symposium draws attention to churches impact on Syracuse

The Preservation Association of Central New York held the Sacred Places Symposium this past Saturday at St Paul's Episcopal Cathedral in downtown Syracuse.
Tom Magnarelli WRVO

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.

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8:59am

Mon November 18, 2013
Health

Lack of lung cancer advocacy hinders research dollars, improvements

Aidan Jones Flickr

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.

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8:14am

Thu November 14, 2013
Regional Coverage

Scoping sessions highlight I-81's possible future

Visitors discuss possible options for I-81's future.
Tom Magnarelli WRVO

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.

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4:52pm

Mon November 11, 2013
Transportation

Save I-81 group out with poll showing opposition to tear down

Zack Seward WXXI

A group of suburban politicians and business owners that support keeping Interstate 81 running through the city of Syracuse are out with a poll they say shows most residents agree with them.

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