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News stories tagged with "moriah"

Book review: "Mudwoman"

In the opening scene of Joyce Carol Oates' new novel, Mudwoman, a religiously deranged woman sacrifices her young daughter, throwing her into the mud flats of the fictional "Black Snake River," in the Adirondack fooothills. Betsy Kepes has this review.  Go to full article
Governor Cuomo, Sen. Little and Essex County chairman Randy Douglas
Governor Cuomo, Sen. Little and Essex County chairman Randy Douglas

Governor Cuomo declares official disaster in Essex County

Just after noon on Friday Governor Andrew Cuomo arrived by helicopter in the flood-ravaged community of Moriah, in the Champlain Valley.

After touring two sites where bridges collapsed following torrential rains, the governor declared that Essex County has official "disaster" status.  Go to full article

NC prisons' fate could hang on Paterson budget extender

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says there's progress on the state budget. Silver said his house plans to pass the public safety, transportation and economic development portions of the budget today.
Silver says he's not fazed by the governor's new ultimatum, to pass a budget by June 28th or be forced to vote on approve Paterson's spending plan in emergency spending bill. And he says he thinks some kind of accord on a full budget can be reached soon, perhaps by Monday or Tuesday.

The North Country's bipartisan legislative team is especially worried about the emergency bill expected from Paterson today. "Public safety" includes prisons, including North Country prison the governor has said he wants to close. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article
Tony Salerno watches from his makeshift blind.
Tony Salerno watches from his makeshift blind.

Hunting for wild turkey, savoring a north woods morning

The spring turkey hunt is underway across the North Country. For many outdoorsmen, it's one of the most challenging and satisfying hunts of the year. The weather is generally good, there are few bugs, and the Adirondack Mountains in May are stunningly beautiful. Brian Mann headed out this week with two veteran sportsmen from Moriah, in the Champlain Valley. He sent this audio postcard.  Go to full article
Does the North Country prison industry have a future?
Does the North Country prison industry have a future?

The case against North Country prisons

On the heels of a massive, 2,000 person rally last week, those trying to keep Ogdensburg's state prison open are getting ready to make their case in Albany. Closing the prison would eliminate 287 jobs, an annual payroll of some $22 million. According to the Ogdensburg Journal, a local task force is sending two buses next Tuesday to Albany to lobby lawmakers and rally on the capital steps. B

ut people who want to see the prisons close held rallies of their own this week. The Corrections Association of New York, a prison reform group, brought 400 people to the state capital on Wednesday.

Director Robert Gangi says the current budget deficit makes contracting the prison system a must. "The state's inmate population has dropped by nearly 14,000 inmates," Gangi says. "There are either 6,000 empty beds or 5,000 empty beds in the state's prison system. Given that it costs the department of correctional services $55,000 a year to maintain a bed whether it's occupied or whether it's empty, we think that it's the moment when the state should move forward very aggressively to downsize the prison system." Gangi says New York's economic development agency should help communities like Ogdensburg find a new use for closing prisons.

A 2004 study by another reform group, the Sentencing Project, compared rural towns in New York where prisons were built to non-prison ones. Executive director Marc Mauer told David Sommerstein it found prisons had little effect on the overall rural economy and may even have hurt it.  Go to full article

Does the town of Moriah have a future after the prison industry?

People plan to rally Thursday afternoon at 4:30 in Port Henry, at the Knights of Columbus Hall, in support of Moriah Shock. Governor David Paterson has slated the prison for closure as part of his statewide budget-cutting plan. Moriah town supervisor Tom Scozzafava says closing the camp will cripple his town's economy and end one of the most innovative programs in the state's prison system.  Go to full article

Story 2.0: A fresh start at Moriah Shock

Even many prison reform advocates, who want fewer New Yorkers sent to prison, say the state's so-called "shock" program offers alternatives that can benefit low-level, non-violent criminals. Inmates from Moriah Shock have long served useful roles in the region as well, helping forest rangers battle wild fires in the Adirondacks. Over the weekend, they were among the volunteers building the ice palace for Saranac Lake's Winter Carnival. A decade ago, Brian Mann spent a day behind bars at Moriah Shock, attending a graduation, talking with the inmates and their families.  Go to full article

BREAKING: Paterson's budget closes prisons in North Country

In his State-of-the-State address two weeks ago, Gov. David Paterson predicted this would be "a winter of reckoning."

This morning, he and his budget director began to fill in the details. For the North Country, they include closure of three prisons--in Ogdensburg, Lyon Mountain and Moriah--as well as both Adirondack Park Visitors Interpretive centers, at Paul Smiths and Newcomb. Roughly 480 high-paying government jobs are at stake.

State Sen. Betty Little's spokesman Dan Mac Entee told North Country Public Radio the prisons will close in 2011, "Obviously the Senator is very concerned. It's not altogether surprising that upstate facilities are once again targeted for closure. Given the concentration of power downstate it's hard to fight back against something like that."

The governor said New York's budget is caught between rising fixed costs and an addiction to overspending. It's crashed, he said, and the state can't put off a remedy. Paterson said the state is facing a $7.4 billion deficit in the coming year.

The $134 billion budget the governor proposed today closes that gap, and lays out a four-year plan for recovery. The governor is asking for a 5% cut in school aid--$1 billion overall--as well as $1 billion in new taxes and fees. In addition to the billion-dollar cut in school aid, Paterson wants a $1 billion cut in health care spending, much of which goes to hospitals and nursing homes.

He said: "This is not a budget of choice, this is a budget of necessity."

We'll have more during All Before Five this afternoon, and The Eight O'Clock Hour tomorrow morning.  Go to full article
Spitzer says property tax cap is a "blunt instrument" but may be necessary (File photo)
Spitzer says property tax cap is a "blunt instrument" but may be necessary (File photo)

Property tax cap would reshape North Country economy

One of the most anticipated parts of Governor Spitzer's State of the State address was his proposal to confront spiraling property taxes. Spitzer established a new bi-partisan commission that will search for answers to the problem, possibly including a cap on property tax hikes. But here in the North Country, property taxes fuel everything from local highway departments to senior health care and after-school sports. They also fund a huge percentage of high-paying jobs. As Brian Mann reports, a cap on property taxes would shift the foundation of the North Country's economy.  Go to full article
The (former) bridge on the Fisk Rd. in Moriah.  Photo by Barb Brassard.
The (former) bridge on the Fisk Rd. in Moriah. Photo by Barb Brassard.

Audio Photo Caption: A Road Washed Away

Barb Brassard of Moriah in Essex County talks about her photo she sent in for NCPR's Photo of the Day. It shows a local bridge washed out by heavy rains last week.  Go to full article

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