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NCPR News Staff: Brian Mann
News Reporter and Adirondack Bureau Chief

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A Fife Tune From the Colonial Era

Listen to Gregory Veens rendition of Free America on the fife.  Go to full article

Battle of Valcour Island

The site of a historic Lake Champlain battle may get some renewed attention. Road improvements have made the memorial to the Battle of Valcour Island hard to spot. The state Department of Environmental Conservation is creating a small historic park near the southern tip of Valcour Island. The October 11, 1776, battle was an American defeat, but it was crucial to America's eventual success in the Revolutionary War. Re-enactors are bringing the brutal struggle to life. Brian Mann joined re-enactors on the island for last summer's recreation.  Go to full article

Study: High Mercury Levels in Adirondack Loons

The final report from a study of mercury levels in Adirondack loons is out. It finds that 17 percent of the birds scientists sampled last summer had high enough levels of mercury to affect their reproduction and behavior. The findings suggest that acid rain's effects on the Adirondack Park have spread throughout the food chain. But the long term effects are still to be determined. Brian Mann was with the researchers late last summer, and reported on what were then the preliminary findings.  Go to full article

State of Mental Health Care in the Prisons

A new report issued today argues that the 67,000 inmates in New York's prison system need better health care - and mental health counseling. Eleven percent of the state's prisoners are diagnosed with mental illness. Brian Mann talks with Jennifer Wynn, with the Correctional Association of New York, which issued the study.

The Department of Correctional Services declined to be interviewed to respond to the report, instead issuing a press release.  Go to full article

Exploring History Underwater

The state is considering new measures to protect lakes and rivers from invasive species - like zebra mussels. For years, environmentalists have warned that the zebra mussels threaten native species. But there's another threat too - to undewater history. Brian Mann joins a team of divers exploring Lake Champlain's underwater historic preserve.  Go to full article

Adirondacks In High Gear: A "Peak Bagger" Speed Climbs the 46 Highest Peaks

Brian Mann talks with Ted Keizer, a speed climber who is attempting to scale the 46 Adirondack mountains higher than 4,000 feet - in less than 4 days and 18 hours. For most hikers, climbing the region's highest peaks can take years or even decades. But is faster better?
 Go to full article

Terrorism Suspect Arrested In Montreal

An Algerian man will appear in court tomorrow in Montreal, after his arrest Friday on charges that he aided an Islamic terror cell. The man is accused of conspiring to blow up the U.S. embassy in Paris. Brian Mann has details:  Go to full article

Ausable Valley Voters Approve 17 Million Dollar Budget

Voters in the Ausable Valley school district narrowly approved a seventeen million dollar budget on Thursday. The spending plan will mean an eleven percent property tax increase. That price tag angered some locals, who urged the school district to make deeper program cuts. Brian Mann has details:  Go to full article

Ausable Valley School District Budget Up For Vote: 11 Percent Tax Increase

Voters in the Ausable Valley School District go to the polls today to vote on a new school budget. In May voters defeated a spending plan that would have meant a twenty-two percent property tax increase. School officials say this new budget will mean widespread program cuts--but a local taxpayers' group says the price tag is still too high. Brian Mann has our story.  Go to full article

114th Assembly District Race Is On: Abdallah Will Challenge Ortloff

Plattsburgh Town Supervisor Andrew Abdullah toured the North Country on Tuesday, to announce that he'll challenge Chris Ortloff for the assembly seat in the 114th District. As Brian Mann reports, the primary race reflects deep divisions in the region's Republican party.
 Go to full article

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Brian Mann. Nancie Battaglia photo

Brian Mann
grew up in Alaska, where he fell in love with public radio. In 1999, Brian moved to the Adirondacks and helped launch NCPR's news bureau at Paul Smiths College. "I love the chemistry of water and mountains," Brian says. "But I'm also pretty crazy about village life in the north country. It's the kind of place where you know your neighbors." Brian lives in Saranac Lake with wife Susan and son Nicholas. He's a frequent contributor to NPR and also writes regularly for regional magazines, including Adirondack Life and the Adirondack Explorer.

Recent Brian Mann stories carried by NPR:

AP
January 2, 2014 | NPR · Parts of the Northeast and New England are expected to be hit the hardest today and Friday. More than a foot of snow may fall on Boston. The wind chill may plunge to 40 degrees below zero in the Adirondacks. Flight delays and cancellations are piling up along with the snow.
 
AP
December 16, 2013 | NPR · Forty seven people died in July when a freight train derailed and dozens of tanks carrying oil exploded and caught fire. Much of Lac-Megantic was leveled. For the first time since then, freight cars will travel through this week. Officials say they'll only carry "dry goods." Residents are worried.
 
October 29, 2013 | NCPR · With just a hundred days to go before the Winter Olympic Games open in Russia, even many gold medalists are still fighting for a place on Team USA. Justin Olsen, a bobsledder from San Antonio, Texas, helped the U.S. win a historic gold medal four years ago in Vancouver, but he's struggled to overcome injuries in the lead-up to Sochi.
 
September 10, 2013 | NPR · New York adopted one of the toughest gun control laws in the U.S. — banning the sale of assault rifles and banana clips. Many of the state's county sheriffs hate the law and some say they won't enforce it. The fight over gun rights and gun safety has become a hot issue in sheriff races, as local law enforcement officials seek re-election in rural counties.
 
July 26, 2013 | NPR · More than two weeks after a fiery train crash left 47 dead in Lac-Megantic, Quebec, the town's center remains in shambles, while a criminal investigation and lawsuits are underway.
 
July 11, 2013 | NPR · In Lac Megantic, Quebec, locals are waiting impatiently for answers following Saturday's train explosion that left 50 people dead. The provincial government in Quebec is blasting the railroad at the center of this disaster for responding too slowly — and requesting more aid from Canada's federal government to help the rural town rebuild.
 
November 4, 2012 | NPR · As New York City's first responders begin to show fatigue, and in many cases deal with losses of their own homes, replacement crews of firefighters are getting ready to roll into Manhattan and Long Island. Among them are a group of firefighters from a small rural fire station in the mountains of upstate New York.
 
istockphoto.com
April 30, 2012 | NPR · The Obama administration backed off a proposal to restrict kids under 16 from working on farms after a major push by conservatives and farm state Democrats. But farmers themselves weren't too happy about the restrictions, either.
 
February 18, 2012 | NPR · U.S. bobsled racers triumphed at the 2010 Winter Olympics, but it's been tough sledding ever since. The American team has lost big sponsors and struggled to win big races. This weekend, the world's top sled teams face off in Lake Placid, N.Y., for the world championships. North Country Public Radio's Brian Mann reports that American athletes hope the home-track advantage will give them a shot at a medal.
 
September 4, 2011 | NPR · The massive clean-up from Tropical Storm Irene continues in upstate New York, but some cash-strapped rural communities say they're not sure how much they can afford to rebuild.