Flooding Presents Serious Problems In Lansing

Jul242015
Lansing FloodingHeavy rains caused such severe major flooding problems around Tompkins County last month that major state and county roads were closed in Newfield and Danby.  Here in Lansing flooding continues to be a problem for the Town and residents alike.  Flooding at Myers Park has caused the cancellation of several summer programs, and property owners are repeatedly being slammed by destructive storm water that continues to rack up repair charges.  Jurisdiction issues confound residents as they attempt to find someone who can solve their flooding problems.

"We've been flooded three times within about a year's period of time," Auburn Road resident Emma Harner told the Lansing Town Board last week.  "Don has owned this property since 1970 and we never had flooding in the area where we are having it now.  In the last few days I spoke with many of you as well as state representatives.  I keep getting referred to somebody else and somebody else.  The problem is not going to magically go away.  We've been having this flooding for a good year now, and it's getting worse."

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Iocabucci Elected School Board President

Jul242015

Iocabucci Elected School Board President

 

School BoardLong time school board member Christine Iocabucci was elected School Board President last week.  Board officers are elected by sitting school board members.  Glenn Swanson has been President the past three school years.  Iocabucci presented Swanson a book about 'The Avengers' pointing out that they are also a strong team, though she stopped short of assigning superhero characters to the board members.

"I would like to take this opportunity to thank Glenn Swanson," Iocabucci said.  "For the last three years we have become quite a unified board.  As such we've been able to focus on our children and our community, the education process here at Lansing and on our relationships.  Part of the reason is that Glenn is such a team player.  He has helped to make us a really good, strong team."

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Power Plant Fate Still On Hold

Jul242015

Power Plant Fate Still On Hold

 

Power PlantAs Lansing waits to learn the fate of the Cayuga Power Plant, a new notice from the New York State Public Service Commission (PSC) has provided a clue that a decision on the pending repowering proposal may come this fall.  Upstate New York Power Producers (UNYPP) Chief Operating Officer Jerry Goodenough says the filing is part of the Auburn transmission tines proceedings.

"The Commission is considering whether to adopt, modify, or reject, in whole or in part, the proposals filed by Cayuga and NYSEG on February 6, 2015, and may address other related matters, including, but not limited to, the Joint Proposal filed on June 22, 2015 in Case 13-T-0235, concerning planned transmis- sion projects," the notice reads.  It then goes on to say, "Public comment will be received until: 45 days after publication of this notice."

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Masser Ramps Up Early Assembly Campaign

Jul242015

Masser Ramps Up Early Assembly Campaign

 

Herb MasserTompkins County is overwhelmingly Democratic, and nobody is more keenly aware of that fact than county Republicans.  Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton's career has mirrored the county's political predilection for nearly three decades.  She served as Chief of Staff to former Assemblyman Marty Luster for 14 years, and replaced him in the Assembly when he stepped down.  She has won seven elections -- at the end of her current term she will have matched Luster's 14 year tenure.

Republican Herb Masser thinks Lifton's seven terms in Albany is enough.  Masser, an Enfield resident, challenged Lifton in last year's election, but Lifton handily defeated him by winning more than two out of every three votes.  Although next year's election is  a good 14 months away, Masser is already gearing up to challenge her again.  This time he says he thinks he can win.

"Last time I built a base," Masser says.  "I had nothing to begin with.  Now I have a huge base on which we're going to build enough to overwhelm the numbers this time."

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County Legislature Highlights

Jul242015

County Legislature Highlights

 

Tompkins County LegislatureStill No Decision on Preferred Developer for Old Library Site
The Tompkins County Legislature again tonight failed to reach a decision on selecting a preferred developer for the County’s Old Library property.  After failing to muster the necessary eight votes for any development proposal at the Legislature’s June 16 meeting, then deadlocking July 10 at the committee level on proposals to forward a new recommendation to the full Legislature, the Legislature tonight, in 90 minutes of comment and deliberation, considered three member-filed resolutions, each of which failed to win support.

The Legislature heard more than a half-hour of public comment—seven of the ten people who spoke voiced support of the Franklin Properties group, which would adapt the structure of the current building into uses including 22 condominiums.  Also among those who spoke was Brian Wilbur, chair of the Board of Directors of Lifelong, who stressed that his board must look out for the interests of the senior services non-profit, which may extend beyond the current development issue.  He urged the Legislature to make its decision based on the larger community perspective, beyond Lifelong.  The Travis Hyde proposal, which would build 60 senior-focused rental apartments as part of its project, includes space for Lifelong in its proposal.
 

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Manufacturing Hub to Open in Greater Rochester Area

Jul242015

Manufacturing Hub to Open in Greater Rochester Area

 

capitalbuilding 120Congressman Tom Reed announced that Western New York will become home to the nation's first high tech manufacturing hub following the passage of his Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act or "RAMI." This new investment is expected to bring jobs and new industries to the region.

"The passage of RAMI was a tremendous legislative victory for the people of Western New York. Pieces of legislation like this don't often get passed into law, even after 30 years of career legislative service.  This was a great accomplishment and I'm very proud to have sponsored this bill," said Reed.

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Public Safety Committee Reviews Draft Body Camera Policy

Jul242015
sheriffbodycam120The Legislature’s Public Safety Committee continued its discussion of body cameras, reviewing the draft Sheriff’s Office General Order that would govern use and operation of the cameras, including measures required to secure and safeguard digital evidence captured by the cameras.  Use of the cameras, as described in the draft order, is intended to assist officers in the performance of their duties, increase transparency and accountability in operations, and gather evidence for use in the prosecution of crimes.  Tompkins County Sheriff Ken Lansing and Undersheriff Brian Robison appeared before the committee to explain the draft order and respond to Legislators’ questions.

The draft document states that it is the policy of the Sheriff’s Office for officers to activate the recording function of the body-worn cameras when engaged in law enforcement operations—that every officer assigned to the Patrol Division must wear a body camera when on duty, and all other officers must wear one when reasonably expected that the officer will engage in law enforcement operations during the officer’s shift.  Body cameras must be worn by officers assigned to
Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) or Critical Incident Negotiating Team (CINT) operations when responding to such calls.  The draft order sets detailed requirements for aspects including maintenance, activation and duration of recording, maintenance of access to, and retention of videos, and training standards.

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Tax Cap Will Drop Below One Percent In 2016

Jul242015

Tax Cap Will Drop Below One Percent In 2016

 

DiNapoliProperty tax growth for local governments will be capped at less than one percent for the 2016 fiscal year, according to a report issued today by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. The report noted the allowable tax levy growth factor will be 0.73 percent for entities that operate on a calendar-based fiscal year – which includes all counties, towns, fire districts, 44 cities and 10 villages.

"Local government officials need to brace for the lowest growth in their property tax revenue in the tax cap era," said DiNapoli. "Municipalities may have to operate differently under these new limits. Even tougher budget choices may be required on staffing levels, delivery of services, fund balance reductions, and deferral of capital and infrastructure projects. And if inflation trends continue, it is possible that some local governments with fiscal years beginning later in 2016, including school districts, could be faced with zero growth in property tax revenue."

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Reed Opposes Iran Deal, Seeks Input

Jul242015

Reed Opposes Iran Deal, Seeks Input

 

Tom ReedTom Reed reiterated his opposition to President Obama’s Iran Nuclear Agreement calling it dangerous for American national security. "This unfair proposal puts Americans here and around the world in very real danger," said Reed. "People’s lives are at risk if the United States adopts this proposal. We have no guarantee that the leading state sponsor of terror would not give this technology to terrorists to detonate on American soil."
 
He cited a variety of reasons for his opposition to the proposal, including allowing the Iranians to keeping their nuclear centrifuges active, lifting bans on the development of ballistic missile technology and the sale of Iranian oil internationally.
 

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The Watchtower Bible College of Gilead trained Jehovah's Witnesses missionaries in Lansing from 1942 until the 1970s when it moved to New York City

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