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Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/25947183@N04/5728324248/">Ove Overmeyer</a>, CC some rights reserved
Photo: Ove Overmeyer, CC some rights reserved

Is it time for reform at the state Board of Elections?

Anti-corruption proposals are proliferating in Albany, following two high profile bribery scandals. Some of them focus on the long neglected state Board of Elections, which hasn't even had an investigator on staff in over a year.  Go to full article
Speed skater Bridie Farrell says she was sexually abused by a much older skater, with some of the assaults occurring in Lake Placid and Saratoga Springs (Photo:  Milwaukee Public Radio)

Sex abuse charge rocks US speedskating

Correction: NCPR mistakenly reported that Andy Gabel resigned as president of the US Speedskating federation because of the accusations leveled against him. In fact, Gabel left that post in 2010. He resigned from US Speedskating's Hall of Fame committee following the public charges. We regret the error.

Two top women athletes are accusing the former president of US Speedskating of sexual abuse in the 1990s.

The charges were first leveled by Bridie Farrell, a skater from Wisconsin, who says she was fifteen years old when the abuse occurred. Farrell says some of the sexual assault occurred during training sessions in Lake Placid and Saratoga Springs. A second skater has since come forward, claiming that she, too, was assaulted.  Go to full article
Gardening for the planet. Photo: <a href"http://www.flickr.com/photos/southernpixel/3480710493/">Alby Headrick</a>, CC some rights reserved

Bringing Earth Day back home

It's the 43rd Earth Day. The idea of a day to stop and think about and celebrate the Earth came from U.S. Sen. Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin after he toured the devastation of a massive oil spill off California.

Earth Day 1970 achieved broad political support: Republicans and Democrats, rich and poor, urban and rural, business and labor leaders. The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the passage of the Clean Air, Clean Water, and Endangered Species Acts.

Earth Day is BIG. But awareness of the individual's role in environmental health has evolved in those 43 years, too. Cooperative Extension horticulturist Amy Ivy shares a list of five action points for home gardeners.  Go to full article