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New York state's Senate chamber. The Senate has one week to approve home rule legislation long sought by St. Lawrence County. Photo: JvL, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
New York state's Senate chamber. The Senate has one week to approve home rule legislation long sought by St. Lawrence County. Photo: JvL, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Bill that could raise SLC sales tax passes Assembly

Home rule legislation that would allow St. Lawrence County to raise its sales tax by one percent passed in the New York State Assembly Thursday. County legislative chairman John Putney says the bill now needs Senate approval.  Go to full article
The Saranac River is still below flood stage, but there's no margin for error. This photo was taken Thursday evening. Photo: Mark Kurtz

Emergency alert lifted in Franklin County

UPDATE: Saturday, June 15, 11:40 am:

Franklin County has lifted its state of emergency.

Emergency Services Director Ricky Provost says water levels are down throughout most of the County, and most roads are open. In an email Saturday morning he says, "Things are stable at this point and unless we get a bunch of rain it looks like we are out of the woods."
- Julie Grant

Friday, June 14:

The National Weather Service in Burlington says the Indian River and the BeaverRiver at the Stillwater Reservoir in the southern Adirondacks were near flood stage as of this morning (Friday).

Franklin County officials are also still operating under a state of emergency today as they watch river levels.

With more thundershowers and rain in the forecast today, Saranac Lake's Mayor Clyde Rabideau says some businesses along the Saranac River have seen mild flooding.  Go to full article
Ann Melious, Hamilton County's economic development and tourism director argued for more of the Finch lands to be classified as wild forest, allowing more kinds of recreation.  (Photo: Mark Kurtz)

Hearings underway for Park's new Finch Pruyn lands

This weekend, the state will open up portions of two recently-acquired former Finch, Pruyn and Co. timberlands in the central Adirondacks. That will mean more places to go in the Park for paddling, hiking and fishing. The access is temporary as the Adirondack Park Agency works to come up with a classification plan for the lands.

That process formally got under way this week when the APA hosted the first of eight public hearings scheduled around the state. Environmentalists are pushing for the new lands to be protected as wilderness, while sportsmen and local government officials want to see more opportunities for public access to the lands.  Go to full article
The dispute in Raquette Lake dates back to the 1800s

Raquette Lake land dispute shifts to state Assembly

Lawmakers from the North Country are pushing to add a second Constitutional amendment to the statewide ballot this November that deals with the Adirondack Park.
...  Go to full article
Green groups are hoping the new water levels plan improves wetlands along the St. Lawrence River. Photo: Jenni Werndorf

Another new St. Lawrence, Lake Ontario water levels plan

People along the St. Lawrence River and Lake Ontario will get a chance to weigh in on a new water levels plan next month. It's called "Plan 2014". Regulators say it's better...  Go to full article

Black & Hispanic caucus pushes pot decriminalization

Members of the new York legislature's Black and Hispanic caucus and their allies are making a last minute push for a bill to decriminalize the public possession of small...  Go to full article

Books: "Strong Deaf"

Novelist Lynn McElfresh says her favorite place to write is in the Thousand Islands, at her family cottage on Grennell Island. Two sisters share the pages in her new book...  Go to full article