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News stories tagged with "government"

Reform groups wrangle over redistricting constitutional amendment

Government reform groups are badly fractured over a proposed constitutional amendment poised for passage in the legislature to change the state's redistricting process. Some say it's the best deal that can be obtained and will represent some reform. Others say it's an unacceptable step backwards. In Albany, Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article
Tara Liloia in front of Isle La Motte town offices. Photos: Sarah Harris
Tara Liloia in front of Isle La Motte town offices. Photos: Sarah Harris

Town meeting day: VT voters decide issues big and small

Vermont's Champlain Islands are smack in the middle of Lake Champlain's northern end. Isle La Motte is the westernmost of those islands. It's isolated and rural. Living there, you might travel to New York State to see a doctor, or go to the grocery store.

But, Isle La Motte joins other towns across Vermont in town meeting day, when citizens come together to have their say on issues big and small. Sarah Harris spent town meeting day on the island and has our story.  Go to full article
City Hall in Burlington. Photo: TripAdvisor.com
City Hall in Burlington. Photo: TripAdvisor.com

In Burlington, electing a new mayor

Town meeting day in Vermont is one of the few examples of direct democracy in our country. It's a state holiday, and townspeople turn out to elect municipal leaders and approve local budgets.

This year local issues at town meeting reflect national debates. In Franklin, Vermont, voters will determine whether prayer should be allowed at town meeting. And 52 towns will vote on whether to pass a constitutional amendment overturning the Supreme Court ruling on Citizens United.

In Burlington, the state's largest city, Vermonters are headed to the polls to elect a new mayor. Sarah Harris has more.  Go to full article
Lorinda Bushey
Lorinda Bushey

Heating assistance cuts mean a tough winter in NY, VT

The federal low income heating assistance program, commonly known as LIHEAP, has had a lot of ups and downs this year. Funding levels are lower than they've been in awhile. And there's more demand for services.

In New York state, this winter's average benefits for families are $500-700 lower than they were last year.

Sarah Harris reports from Vermont, where the state's Congressional delegation secured an additional $5 million to bolster the program. But even with that help, many Vermonters are still struggling to keep their heat on this winter.  Go to full article
It applies, regardless of the cause of the flooding. ... from the larger perspective, this is what insurance is all about.

State: flood claim denials "incorrect"

The State Superintendent of Insurance is warning that insurance companies are telling some flood victims that damage from Hurricane Irene is not covered. As Karen DeWitt reports, he says that's just not correct.  Go to full article
It's certainly not fair that if someone doesn't pay their water bill, we shut their water off...yet they're renting our fields...not paying.

Audit finds Watertown parks & rec mismanagement

Watertown's baseball team nearly left town recently after revelations it owed the city more than $40,000. The Watertown Wizards play in the summer collegiate league, and has produced some professional players. The team hadn't paid for use of city-owned fields for several seasons.

It turns out that was because the city's Parks and Recreation department wasn't collecting its bills. The results of an audit released this week slams the department. Watertown correspondent Joanna Richards has more.  Go to full article
A crew works in Keeseville (Photos:  Brian Mann)
A crew works in Keeseville (Photos: Brian Mann)

As flooding continues, teamwork keeps rural towns afloat

The flooding crisis across northern New York and Vermont began more than a week ago and as we've been hearing there's still no end in sight.

State and local officials say their crews are weary and stretched thin as they continue to deal with evacuations, closed roads, and swamped sewer and water systems.

But they also say that this disaster has brought unprecedented levels of cooperation and coordination, with personnel shuttling between the hardest hit areas.

Brian Mann has that story this morning.  Go to full article

Villages consider - and reconsider - consolidation

This spring, residents of Potsdam will get their first look at a study of whether the village of Potsdam should disappear as a government body.

Governor Cuomo has said he wants to provide financial help for villages that consolidate into their surrounding towns.

Several other villages are also looking at the issue, including Mannsville in southern Jefferson County.

In 2009, a new law made it easier to dissolve local governments. But so far, every village that has voted on the issue has chosen not to dissolve. One exception is the village of Altmar in Oswego County. Reporter Dave Bullard explains the issue is more complex than it might seem.  Go to full article
Doug Hoffman (L) and Matt Doheny (R) talk briefly before their second and final debate in Saranac Lake (Photo:  Brian Mann)
Doug Hoffman (L) and Matt Doheny (R) talk briefly before their second and final debate in Saranac Lake (Photo: Brian Mann)

NY-23: Republicans promise conservative philosophy, but offer few specifics

In their final debate last night, Republicans Matt Doheny and Doug Hoffman both claimed to be the true conservative running for congress in the 23rd district.

The two men, who hope to unseat Democrat Bill Owens, promised to shrink big government and cut taxes.  Go to full article

Essex County Democrat opens doors in Albany

Back in January, the Essex County board of supervisors chose a Democrat to lead the group for the first time in three decades. Randy Douglas, from the town of Jay, inherited some big problems - from the closure of the Crown Point bridge to threats to close Moriah shock prison and de-fund the Olympic Regional Development Authority. But Republicans and Democrats alike say the fact that Douglas is a Democrat has opened doors in Albany. Jon Alexander has our story.  Go to full article

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