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News stories tagged with "budget-crisis"

Newcomb's public school wouldn't survive without state property tax payments, which total roughly $2.5 million per year (Photo:  Brian Mann)
Newcomb's public school wouldn't survive without state property tax payments, which total roughly $2.5 million per year (Photo: Brian Mann)

State property tax payments in Adirondacks face more scrutiny, debate

Over the last couple of weeks, counties across the North Country have been hiking their property taxes, often by double-digit amounts. But a big chunk of those property taxes won't come from local residents. In many communities and in many school districts the state of New York is the biggest property owner and pays the lion's share of taxes.

As we heard yesterday, one state agency has already suspended its property tax payments, costing counties and schools millions of dollars. In this second part our two-part series, Brian Mann reports that local leaders across the region fear that their state property tax payments could also be cut.  Go to full article

County nursing homes including E'town's Horace Nye could be privatized

This week, county leaders from across New York state met to discuss the future of nursing homes run by local governments. In many counties, the homes provide crucial care to elderly and sick residents. But the facilities are costing taxpayers millions of dollars to operate.

The Horace Nye home in Elizabethtown is expected to lose close to $2 million this year. As Brian Mann reports, a growing number of local leaders say those costs are too high at a time when property taxes are soaring.  Go to full article
OK Slip Falls is one of the areas that the Nature Conservancy hopes to protect with the help of NY State.  (Source:  TNC, Carl Heilman photo)
OK Slip Falls is one of the areas that the Nature Conservancy hopes to protect with the help of NY State. (Source: TNC, Carl Heilman photo)

NY budget crisis: "Old assumptions" about the Adirondack Park "will have to be reexamined"

The Adirondack Park Agency was created in 1971. In the decades since, a debate has raged over how the Park should be managed.

Specific issues change from year to year. But the basic battle lines over conservation, property rights, and economic development have long seemed carved in stone.

But now some observers say the budget crisis in Albany is changing all that, throwing into doubt some of the core ideas about the Park and its future. Brian Mann has our special report.  Go to full article
Joe Martens, OSI (Source:  APA
Joe Martens, OSI (Source: APA

OSI's Joe Martens: "We've got to start figuring out the (Adirondack Park) differently"

The Open Space Institute has helped to engineer some of the most important land conservation deals in the Adirondack Park over the last decade.

OSI financed the Tahawus purchase, which protected parts of the southern High Peaks. The group also helped fund the massive Finch, Pruyn deal worth more than $110 million.

But OSI executive director Joe Martens, who also heads the Olympic Regional Development Authority board, says the fiscal crisis in Albany is changing the rules for how the Park should be managed. Martens spoke in depth with NCPR's Adirondack bureau chief, Brian Mann.  Go to full article
The iron mining days are over in Lyon Mountain
The iron mining days are over in Lyon Mountain

In Lyon Mountain, a rally to save three North Country prisons

More than 200 people rallied yesterday in the American Legion hall in Lyon Mountain. The Clinton County community is fighting to save its state prison, which anchors the local economy. Lyon Mountain Correctional Facility is one of three prisons in the North Country slated for closure next year. As Brian Mann reports, prison guards are hoping to form a united front across the region.

Assemblywoman Addie Russell from Theresa also sent a letter to Governor Paterson this week, urging him to keep the Ogdensburg Correctional Facility open. In her letter, she accused the state Department of Correctional Facility of using "false" claims to justify the closure. According to Russell, maximum security prisons in the state are still overcrowded and too many inmates are being "double-bunked." Russell also argued that Ogendesburg's economy "will be devastated" if the correctional facility closes.  Go to full article
AMC CEO Chandler Ralph
AMC CEO Chandler Ralph

Medicaid cuts mean ?serious danger of closing? upstate nursing homes

Here in the North Country, hospitals and nursing homes offer vital services. But they also serve as the largest private sector employers across the region. Industry leaders say Governor Paterson's proposed Medicaid cuts, and other reimbursements, could force already struggling companies to close their doors. Brian Mann sat down yesterday with Chandler Ralph, CEO of Adirondack Medical Center, which operates clinics, hospitals and nursing homes in the Park. She says if this proposal goes through it would put even more stress on the struggling Uihlein nursing home in Lake Placid.  Go to full article

North Country counties, school districts brace for massive cuts

Governor Paterson's decision to withhold funding for local governments and school districts is sending shock waves through the North Country. People in this part of New York rely heavily on government for social services, most provided by towns and counties but paid for with state subsidies. Locals also look to local government for the highest paying and most dependable jobs. To understand just how large the impact of state budget cuts could be, Brian Mann looks in-depth this morning at Essex County. In Elizabethtown, the county seat, state subsidies shape every aspect of life and the economy.  Go to full article

Paterson budget plan still targets tax payments to Adirondacks

Governor David Paterson issued his thirty day budget amendments yesterday. A coalition of Adirondack leaders had been pushing for the Governor to drop plans to cap property taxes on state land inside the blue line. But as Brian Mann reports, state officials seem committed to the idea of cutting payments to Park communities.  Go to full article

Stormy times in Albany: governor's budget due

Gov. David Paterson will send his budget to the legislature tomorrow. Despite the administration's attempts to keep control of the bad news, details are leaking out. After opposing higher taxes for months, the governor wants to increase several taxes, from gasoline to clothing. Although Paterson won't seek to raise income tax rates, budget spokesman Jeffrey Gordon says he will eliminate legal exemptions he considers income tax "loop holes." Paterson's staff said the budget will include proposals to increase the welfare grant, while making government subsidized insurance available to more of the working poor. The governor projects deficits will total $47 billion over three years. The current budget is about $120 billion. Martha Foley spoke with capitol correspondent Karen DeWitt about the budget, disarray among Democrats in the state Senate, and the difficult days ahead in Albany.  Go to full article

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