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News stories tagged with "lewis-county"

The Croghan Island Mill
The Croghan Island Mill

Croghan scrambles to save its dam

The Lewis County village of Croghan is mounting a last-ditch effort to save its dam on the Beaver River as well as the historic sawmill it powers.

The dam is crumbling and is considered a high hazard by the NYS Department of Environmental Conservation. State officials said they'll remove the stop logs next month and may breach the dam completely. Local officials say that will leave shoreline residents high and dry, and hurt a grassroots effort to rebuild the dam. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

State aid cuts squeeze rural schools

Across the North Country, school districts are wrestling with deep cuts to their budgets - the result of Albany's efforts to rein in billions of dollars in deficit spending.

Governor Cuomo has stood firm on his belief schools have the finances to absorb a $1.2 billion cut in education funding. But those cuts are hitting rural school districts especially hard. Educators blame a byzantine and outdated school funding formula. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

State aid cuts squeeze rural schools

Across the North Country, school districts are wrestling with deep cuts to their budgets - the result of Albany's efforts to rein in billions of dollars in deficit spending.

Governor Cuomo has stood firm on his belief schools have the finances to absorb a $1.2 billion cut in education funding. But those cuts are hitting rural school districts especially hard. Educators blame a byzantine and outdated school funding formula. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
7th grader Kerrigan Mahoney helped organize a talent show to raise money for her school.
7th grader Kerrigan Mahoney helped organize a talent show to raise money for her school.

Students show talent to fight for the arts

The latest Siena College poll found Governor Cuomo enjoying the support of near three-quarters of New Yorkers even after his austerity budget cut $1.2 billion to schools. Now reality's setting in as districts finalize their budget plans. And in many North Country districts, the news is ugly, with teacher layoffs and program cuts the norm.

The news is so bad, students themselves are fighting back. Today we have two stories from opposite ends of the region. We start in Croghan in Lewis County, where the Beaver River school district may cut or reduce a third of its staff, including several music and art teachers. Students organized a talent show last night to raise money. David Sommerstein was there.  Go to full article
General James Terry faces the press.
General James Terry faces the press.

Drum commander cites progress in Afghanistan

The war in Libya, unrest through the Middle East, and the nuclear crisis in Japan have pushed America's war in Afghanistan down the news agenda.

Fully half of Fort Drum's soldier population is on the ground in Afghanistan. The Army base's commander is in charge of coalition troops in the most dangerous part of the country. General James Terry briefed the media while on leave from Afghanistan last week. David Sommerstein was there and has out report.  Go to full article
The Croghan Island Mill
The Croghan Island Mill

Crumbling dam threatens historic Croghan mill

Our series on New York's aging infrastructure continues this morning with a look at a crumbling dam in Lewis County and why it threatens a community's identity and culture.

There are more than 5,000 dams in New York State. They're mostly used for flood control, to provide drinking water, for hydropower, and to create lakes and ponds for recreation.

Even dam safety officials don't know how many need repair. But they do know 50 of the most potentially hazardous ones need to be fixed or dismantled.

One of those is on the Beaver River in the village of Croghan. If it can't be fixed, it may force the closure of one of the state's last water-powered sawmills. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
Croghan Island Mill owner John Martin
Croghan Island Mill owner John Martin

Tour the Croghan Island Mill

David Sommerstein spent some more time with John Martin, the owner and operator of the Croghan Island Mill, and went on a tour. Martin specializes in custom windows and doors...things you can't get at Lowe's or Home Depot.

Martin says his father bought the mill from Lehman & Zehr, the original owners, in 1969.  Go to full article
The Tug Hill Plateau by satellite [credit: Tug Hill Commission]
The Tug Hill Plateau by satellite [credit: Tug Hill Commission]

Final push on to save Tug Hill Commission

Leaders across Lewis, Jefferson, and Oneida counties are making a full court press to save the Tug Hill Commission. The 38 year-old agency provides planning, development, and natural resource management assistance to the isolated towns and villages of the Tug Hill Plateau.

The State Senate has included $1.1 million for the Commission in its spending plan. That's a 10% budget cut, on par with what other agencies are dealing with. But the Assembly is so far following Governor Cuomo's recommendation to dissolve the Commission. That's left Tug Hill leaders fighting for the agency's survival. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Sen. Griffo on education cuts, redistricting

New York's Senate passed a bill Tuesday that would make the Power For Jobs program permanent. The newly named "Recharge NY" program would double in size by using electricity that had been allocated to small residential energy bill discounts. It would still offer low-cost power to hundreds of companies across the state in return for job commitments. The new version of the program would also set aside $8 million to offer power discounts for farmers. The now goes before the state Assembly.

Republican Joe Griffo says the bill is one success in what he calls a "very hectic" session. Griffo says lawmakers are scrambling to finish budget bills while trying to avoid the "three-men-in-a-room" process that's given Albany such a bad name. "To debate these issues in public between both houses and hopefully arrive on a consensus so we can have an on-time budget," Griffo says. "I think everybody is trying to work together and do the best we can despite our philosophic differences."

Those differences include how much to cut education spending and how to make redistricting less partisan.

Griffo represents the 47th Senate district, which stretches from Utica in the south, though Lewis County and the eastern half of St. Lawrence County to Massena. He told David Sommerstein making the popular Power For Jobs program permanent is an important step forward.  Go to full article
The Tug Hill Commission is one of those government agencies that actually work.

Efforts to save Tug Hill Commission

Local leaders are scrambling to save a state agency that supports the isolated communities of the Tug Hill Plateau. Governor Cuomo wants to dissolve the Tug Hill Commission in next year's budget. 15 people would lose their jobs.

The Commission serves more than 60 towns and villages in rural Lewis, Jefferson, Oswego, and Oneida counties, helping with economic development, planning, and natural resource protection. David Sommerstein reports on efforts to save the agency.  Go to full article

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