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News stories tagged with "owens"

Downtown Saranac Lake, April 2011. Photo Chris Morris
Downtown Saranac Lake, April 2011. Photo Chris Morris

Good and bad news on federal aid for post-flood rebuilding

Good and bad news this week for those in the North Country who were affected by the historic flooding this spring:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency again denied individual assistance to help recover from losses suffered during historic flooding earlier this year. But farmers, small business owners and many others may be eligible for low-interest loans under a new federal disaster declaration.  Go to full article
Will NY's tough ballast water rules shut down commerce? Photo: USGS
Will NY's tough ballast water rules shut down commerce? Photo: USGS

New York's tough ballast water rules attacked in Congress

New York state is facing new pressure to scrap tough ballast water regulations that are set to go into effect next year. The rules are designed to stop invasive species from reaching the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes.

But as Brian Mann reports, Republicans in Congress say New York should be stripped of hundreds of millions of dollars in Federal EPA funding if the regulations aren't scrapped.  Go to full article
Welcome home could mean no place to live for some soldiers
Welcome home could mean no place to live for some soldiers

Fort Drum faces housing crunch as deployment winds down

Thousands of soldiers will be back at Fort Drum over the next few months as they rotate out of Afghanistan.

The homecoming is welcome news for those soldiers and their families, but U.S. Congressman Bill Owens said any growth in the area could exacerbate area housing. Nora Flaherty reports.  Go to full article
Andrew Cuomo inspects flood damage in Port Henry (File photo/Brian Mann)
Andrew Cuomo inspects flood damage in Port Henry (File photo/Brian Mann)

On the road to FEMA aid, Cuomo seeks major federal disaster designation for NY

Governor Cuomo formally requested Wednesday that President Obama declare a major federal disaster in New York, in the wake of the rain and flooding that have been going on since April 26. The move comes as local officials continue to raise concern about state and Federal aid for recovery efforts across the region.

As Martha Foley reports, Cuomo's request has the support of North Country congressman Bill Owens.  Go to full article
Hispanic men and women - some of them quite young - provide labor illegally on many dairy farms.
Hispanic men and women - some of them quite young - provide labor illegally on many dairy farms.

Owens seeks dairy guest worker program

Yesterday, President Obama took his pitch to overall the nation's immigration laws to the Mexican border. In El Paso, Obama said he's exceeded Republican demands for improved border security. He said now it's time for them to work on immigration reform.

Today, there are at least hundreds of Mexican and Central American men and women working illegally on North Country dairy farms. Last month, a Jefferson County farmer was arrested by federal agents for employing undocumented workers.

For the dairy industry, the biggest problem with current immigration laws is one called H2A. It's a guest worker program, but dairy farmers are not eligible to use it. A bill introduced by Congressman Bill Owens would change that. He spoke with David Sommerstein.  Go to full article

Owens attacks Medicare privatization

North Country Congressman Bill Owens lashed out at Republicans' plan to reduce the federal deficit while backing President Obama's. Speaking in a telephone town hall meeting Thursday, the Democrat from Plattsburgh attacked House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan's deficit reduction plan. Martha Foley reports.  Go to full article

North Country reps respond to intervention in Libya

The region's representatives in Congress are weighing in on the crisis in Libya. Bill Owens, the Democrat representing New York's 23rd Congressional District, says he supports efforts to free the Libyan people from the grip of a powerful dictator. But he also has reservations as the U.S. continues military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Meanwhile, 20th Congressional District Representative Chris Gibson, a Republican and retired Army colonel, says the U.S. has no business getting involved in Libya. Todd Moe has more.  Go to full article
There's got to be some place between full restoration [of funding] and zero that will make sense and allow these stations to continue.

National debate over public broadcasting could impact North Country stations

Debate continued in the House of Representatives late last night on a $1.2 trillion spending bill that carries deep cuts to a number of Federal programs.

Among the $60 billion in cuts is a proposal pushed by House Republicans to eliminate all $430 million in federal funding for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

That money subsidizes public television and public radio in the North Country, including North Country Public Radio.

The idea of ending federal support of public broadcasting has some support among Republicans and conservatives here in the region, while others think it would be shortsighted.

Meanwhile, managers of the region's public radio and television stations have been mobilizing their supporters, through announcements on the air and on their websites, against what they describe as an "assault" on public broadcasting.

Chris Knight has our story.  Go to full article

Owens uses "tele-town hall" to reach out on health care

Last night, Republicans in the House of Representatives held their largely symbolic vote on repealing health insurance reform. The measure won't be taken up in the Senate. And President Obama would veto a repeal of his landmark legislation.

North Country Congressman Bill Owens voted with his Democratic colleagues to keep the new health care laws.

On Tuesday night, Owens held a town hall meeting by telephone with thousands of his constituents to talk about the issue. One of the people listening in was reporter Dave Bullard.  Go to full article
The country's population is growing away from the Northeast (Photo: US Census)
The country's population is growing away from the Northeast (Photo: US Census)

As New York loses two House seats, big North Country shift possible

New Census figures were released yesterday and the news wasn't good for New York state. Federal officials say population trends over the last decade mean New York will lose two seats in Congress. That could mean big changes in sprawling rural districts, including the 20th and the 23rd. As Brian Mann reports, the loss of power is also likely to trigger a bitter political fight in Albany.  Go to full article

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