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NCPR News Staff: Jenna Flanagan

Reporter, The Innovation Trail

Stories filed by Jenna Flanagan

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County legislators at the annual conference for the New York State Association of Counties. Photo: Jenna Flanagan/Innovation Trail
County legislators at the annual conference for the New York State Association of Counties. Photo: Jenna Flanagan/Innovation Trail

County leaders talk consolidation, sharing resources at annual meeting

The State Association of Counties wrapped up their annual meeting in Albany this week where they discussed the unique needs of New York's regional governments.

One prominent issue was consolidation. During his 2013 budget presentation, Governor Cuomo renewed his push for local governments to share more resources as part of a plan to freeze property taxes if counties stay within a 2 percent cap.

The Innovation Trial's Jenna Flanagan talked to County Executives about the push to get them to make savings of 1 percent for three years.  Go to full article
MoveOn.org protesters satirize wealthy government donors at the People's State of the State speech. Photo: Jenna Flanagan/Innovation Trail
MoveOn.org protesters satirize wealthy government donors at the People's State of the State speech. Photo: Jenna Flanagan/Innovation Trail

Advocates: Cuomo policies falling short

It was a cold day in New York State, but a handful of activists braved the single digit temperatures for the People's State of the State in Albany yesterday.

The group of advocates say Governor Cuomo has turned a cold shoulder to the state's struggling middle class and working poor.  Go to full article
Archive Photo of the Day 2/28/12: Lizette Colon Haenel, Canton NY.
Archive Photo of the Day 2/28/12: Lizette Colon Haenel, Canton NY.

Salt on roads, salt in groundwater

Harsh winter weather events bring with them a downpour of salt, de-icing sidewalks, walkways and roads.

It's a regular chore and rock salt is a cheap, popular and effective fix for slippery footing.

But once winter is over and the spring thaw sets in, a secondary effect sets in. This is what becomes of road salt after the snow melts.  Go to full article
New York State Thruway containers of 'beet juice' and beet juice and brine water mix. Photo by Jenna Flanagan, Innovation Trail
New York State Thruway containers of 'beet juice' and beet juice and brine water mix. Photo by Jenna Flanagan, Innovation Trail

Just add beet juice for ice-free highways

It's not used everywhere, but it is catching on. The New York State Thruway Authority is one of several state authorities relying on a mixture of beet 'juice' and salt water to help keep highways ice-free.

Plowing can only do so much and too often a slick, hard pack of snow and ice can cover streets making them dangerous to drive.

So how do you get around that? Beet juice!  Go to full article
Lake Mohonk. Photo: Jenna Flanagan, Innovation Trail
Lake Mohonk. Photo: Jenna Flanagan, Innovation Trail

Rethinking water resources to combat climate change

Catastrophic storms like Irene, Lee and super storm Sandy ravaged much of the Hudson River watershed with flooding and erosion. Environmental advocates and policy makers say that's evidence that climate change is having a major impact on the quantity and quality of the region's water supplies.

Stakeholders joined the Hudson River Watershed Alliance and Mohonk Consultations for a conference in New Paltz last week. They called for communities to seize this 'watershed moment' while admitting that changing existing attitudes towards water management can take a long time.  Go to full article
Jonathan Kozol (pictured here in 2009) was keynote speaker at the Growing Up in Poverty event in Albany. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/89048815@N00/4033701700/">Maureen Sill</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Jonathan Kozol (pictured here in 2009) was keynote speaker at the Growing Up in Poverty event in Albany. Photo: Maureen Sill, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

What lifts children out of poverty?

New York State continues to have a higher percentage of children living in poverty than any other state. And that poverty can chase them through their entire lives.

Early intervention and support can change that trajectory, according to experts in the field who gathered in Albany last week.  Go to full article
GE offices in Schenectady, NY, where the company was founded. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/87587278@N00/3581295898/">Chuck Miller</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
GE offices in Schenectady, NY, where the company was founded. Photo: Chuck Miller, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

GE factory closure shocks the Town of Fort Edward

General Electric announced last week it plans to cease operations at their Fort Edward factory within a year. The factory currently makes electrical components and the move will eliminate 200 jobs from the small community in Washington County.

As the town braces for the impact, the Innovation Trial's Jenna Flanagan talks to some locals about what comes next, including the possibility of an extensive site cleanup.  Go to full article
Kintigh Generating Station in Somerset, NY emitted almost 3.8 million tons of CO2 last year. Photo: <a href=" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Kintigh_Generating_Station_-_Somerset,_New_York.jpg"> Matthew D. Wilson</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Kintigh Generating Station in Somerset, NY emitted almost 3.8 million tons of CO2 last year. Photo: Matthew D. Wilson, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

America's dirtiest power plants: five are in New York

Environmental groups are renewing pressure on Governor Cuomo to make good on his commitment to reduce carbon pollution in the state. The Research and Policy Center of Environment New York is out with its list of America's Dirtiest Power Plants including the five worst in New York State.

Scientists call them the elephant in the room.  Go to full article
Instructions for 'CrowdHydrology.' Photo: Ashley Hassett
Instructions for 'CrowdHydrology.' Photo: Ashley Hassett

Buffalo-based project crowdsources water level tracking

A nationwide project based in New York is using crowd sourcing to gather up-to-date information on water levels.

The program's a partnership between the US Geological Service and the University of Buffalo. It's proving more and more useful at the USGS cuts back on the number of water monitoring stations across the country.  Go to full article

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