Politics & Government

Political news

syrgov.net

Concerns here in Upstate New York over the Trump Administration Budget range from education to the disadvantaged to farmers.  Cuts proposed to a wide range of federal programs would have impacts locally.  Alliance for Quality Education Billy Easton envisions a number of ways school children would suffer.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Green Party candidates for Syracuse mayor and common council are rallying support for a universal health insurance plan that’s now one vote shy of support in the state senate.  The New York Health Act is a single public payer system financed by progressively graduated taxes on payrolls and non-payroll income such as capital gains and interest.  Mayoral candidate Howie Hawkins says federal funds for Medicaid, Medicare, and the family and child health plus programs would be folded in, resulting in savings for all but the wealthiest New Yorkers.

file photo

A National Security expert here in Syracuse has what he calls ‘considerable concern’ over events in Washington surrounding a possible intelligence breach and an ongoing investigation involving President Donald Trump. 

Bill Smullen is Director of National Security Studies at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School.  He’s worried President Trump’s sharing of intelligence could have diplomatic implications.

lyft.com

The state is one step closer to having ride- hailing services available before the Fourth of July, now that the state Senate has passed a bill to speed up when companies like Uber and Lyft will be allowed to operate outside of New York City.

When state lawmakers agreed to allow companies like Uber and Lyft to operate in upstate New York and on Long Island as part of the budget, they thought that they would pass the legislation on by April 1, the start of the new fiscal year.  

NYNOW

There are calls for a criminal investigation of some questionable stipend payments to some New York State Senators. One of the Senators who received those payments is giving it back, while another is calling the whole controversy a  “witch hunt”.

https://www.facebook.com/NicolettiForMayor

Democrats in the City of Syracuse chose Joe Nicoletti as their designated candidate for Mayor in voting Saturday.  The weekend meeting of the party however, still leaves a number of questions unanswered.

The final ballot had Joe Nicoletti edging out Andrew Maxwell to get the party’s official endorsement.  Democrats had been considering seven different candidates who all formally announced. 

Scott Willis / WAER News

Congressmember John Katko is calling former FBI Director James Comey a man of exceptional integrity who did the best job he could under the circumstances.  Both men worked together when they were federal prosecutors.  

Katko says Comey had an impossible job…he was adored and loathed by both democrats and republicans…for different reasons.    But the congressman says the FBI as an agency is top notch…and will continue to investigate Russian meddling in the presidential election.

Karen DeWitt / WXXI News

Voters get a chance to decide in the fall whether the state should have a constitutional convention . Both legislative leaders say, though, they are against it.

Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Senate Leader John Flanagan, appeared together at a forum sponsored by the Albany Times Union’s Hearst Media Center.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Syracuse Common Councilors Monday made a series of revisions to the Miner administration’s budget proposal that affect the police and fire departments, as well as the land bank.  Councilors are shifting a total of $2 million from police and fire overtime budgets to their salary lines in order to cover the cost of hiring more officers.  Council majority leader Steve Thompson was on the force for more than three decades, retiring as chief.  He says the department is already down 41 officers from 2014 due to retirements…

Chris Bolt/WAER News

A fourth candidate has entered the race for two Councilor-at-Large Seats on the Syracuse Common Council, that will be contested this November.  Progressive politics that oppose a conservative Congress and President might play a role in the local election.  The Green Party locally has run numerous candidates for a range of positions in City Hall, including this year's candidacy for Mayor by Howie Hawkins.  None has broken through to get elected yet.  

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