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NCPR News: Nora Flaherty, Reporter/producer

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Cook-off tempers cool as Health Dept. explains regulations

Relations between some local groups and the state department of health have been a little strained over the last few months in St. Lawrence County --ever since two chili cook-offs and another event had to be canceled this winter. The events didn't meet health requirements. At a meeting in February many called the "chili cook-off summit," critics called the rules excessive, confusing and sometimes just random.

This week, the health department has been holding public meetings in towns around the area. They're looking to smooth things out with the churches, fire departments, lodges and other organizations whose events are a big part of North Country life. There's one more meeting, this afternoon at 2 at the Clifton-Fine community center in Star Lake. Nora Flaherty sat in on a meeting in Canton .  Go to full article

USDA loans can help with post-flood rebuilding

USDA Rural Development is reminding people hit by the recent flooding that low-interest loans and grants available through their 504 program may plug gaps left by homeowners' insurance, and help people make needed post-flood home repairs.  Go to full article
Photo by Mary Jane Watson
Photo by Mary Jane Watson

Returning high waters raise debris, sewage fears

The last couple of days of heavy rain have pushed lake and river levels back up. At Rouses Point, Lake Champlain is expected to continue rising at least through Thursday, approaching three feet above flood stage.

According to the National Weather Service, that means "widespread severe flooding" will continue, affecting shoreline homes and businesses as well as some local highways. Officials are also warning boaters that the floodwaters have pushed a large amount of floating debris into the lake.

As much as four inches of rain have fallen on parts of the region since Saturday. More rain, though not as heavy, is expected over the next two days.

In Colton and Potsdam, the Raquette River has been flooding since the last week of April, and the damage is estimated at over a million dollars so far. As Nora Flaherty reports, continuing rain is cause for worry.  Go to full article

Shuttered North Lawrence Dairy finds a buyer

The North Lawrence Dairy plant ceased production of Breyers Yogurt just two weeks ago with no definite plans to reopen--but now the shuttered plant has found a new buyer. Not a lot of details have emerged yet, but Nora Flaherty has this report on what we know so far:  Go to full article

Liasons want to make mass transit work for Ft. Drum area

The Fort Drum Regional Liaison Organization has begun a study they're hoping will ultimately help them better meet the public transit needs of the area's military and civilian populations. Nora Flaherty has the details:  Go to full article

North Lawrence Dairy closes: Workers, locals, farmers feel the effects

Late last month, a yogurt plant in North Lawrence became the latest dairy processor in northern New York to close. North Lawrence has had a dairy processing plant for more than 100 years, and the closure will leave 132 people out of a job. But the effects will be felt by a lot more people than that.  Go to full article
People that live outside the current village aren't going to want to pay taxes to get my sidewalk plowed...they don't even have a sidewalk.

Waddington takes a small step toward dissolution

Waddington, population 736, is only one of several north country villages to consider dissolution. Massena, Potsdam and others have thought about it too--But Waddington's farther along in the process than some.  Go to full article

North Lawrence dairy has last day of production today

Several months after the company that owns the North Lawrence dairy announced they'd be shutting down operations, today is the last day of production at the plant. Nora Flaherty has more.  Go to full article
We know the other issues that have happened in other places in the country, and we want to make sure we’re ever-vigilant.

Police find remains of portable meth lab in Canton

St. Lawrence County law enforcement found what they believe is a meth lab Monday night in Canton. It's the third such find this month. North Country Public Radio's Nora Flaherty has more.  Go to full article

Heard Up North: Spring cleanup, DOT style

Spring cleanup is a major feature of life in the North Country, but for the Department of Transportation's Bruce Reynolds, it's a day's work. Reynolds cleans up trash, dead animals, and beaver dams; and North Country Public Radio's Nora Flaherty caught up with him by the side of the road for this heard up north.  Go to full article

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Nora Flaherty got into public radio kind of by mistake--the local public radio station was in the same building as the office of the Anthropology department at the University of Michigan, where Nora was studying to be a professor. But after a few weeks as an intern, she was convinced she'd stumbled into the right place.

Nora became a reporter and on-air host at Michigan Radio, where she did stories on environmental issues, housing, the arts, among other things. Nora moved to New York City in 2005, and became a producer at WFUV. At WFUV, Nora hosted a weekly interview program and reported on the long-term issues faced by September 11th survivors, education, and less serious topics like fairy tales, freak shows and pop music.

A serious dog person, Nora loves hanging out with her "pack" (her husband and their dog), cooking, and driving in foreign countries.