Several Central New York communities are being recognized for town-wide green energy initiatives that are saving tax-payers money.  The Village of Pulaski, the Town of Cazenovia, and the Village of Cazenovia are eligible for $50,000 in state grants to continue alternative energy development. Village of Cazenovia Mayor Kurt Wheeler finds that green initiatives are something everyone in a community can get behind. 

Sam Kmack / NY NOW

There’s some good news and some bad news from the State Comptrollers’ office. The state’s nearly $200 billion pension fund is doing well, thanks in part to the booming stock market, but there are some worrisome signs for the future of New York’s finances.

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli says the pension fund is up this quarter by 2.9 percent, and has increased 11 and a half percent from last year. DiNapoli says he likes to think that he and his staff have invested wisely, but he says a major factor is the booming stock market.

Syracuse University’s Athletic Department continues to reflect on the life and legacy of Dick MacPherson, who died Tuesday.  The department includes his grandsons, who offered some memories, along with the Athletic Director.  One quality they all seem to agree on is that Coach Mac was a genuine person who made everyone feel important, on and off the field.  Richard 'Macky' MacPherson says he was like a father and his interests went far beyond football.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Nearly three dozen Fulbright Scholars from around the world are wrapping up a four week pre-academic program at Syracuse University preparing them for studies at universities across the U.S.  They learned the basics of how to give a presentation, take notes, as well as the legal and cultural nuances of America.  We caught up with four of them.  Mansoor Eqrar is an architect in the Ministry of Urban Development and Housing in Afghanistan.  He says the country's architecture is in a "bad situation" because buildings are imitating designs from Pakistan, Dubai, and other neighbors.

Karen DeWitt / WXXI News

The former EPA regional administrator under President Obama says scientists who leaked the report on further evidence of climate change to the New York Times should be commended as “whistleblowers”.

Scott Willis / WAER News

Syracuse’s Republican mayoral candidate says one of the keys to move the city out of poverty and lagging economic growth is through mayoral control of the school district.  Former superintendent and educator Laura Lavine says she’s prepared lead the turnaround.  

She says the Syracuse City School District’s recent improvement to a 60 percent graduation rate is nothing to celebrate.  The statewide average is 80 percent.  She says children are not learning and graduating as they should, and teachers don’t feel safe…

Bridget McAllister/WAER News

Dozens of kids playing in Syracuse parks this summer are learning more than just fun and games.  The YMCA Power Scholars program, an educational camp, is wrapping up its lessons with over 60 third- and fourth-graders. The children themselves find that the camp is about more than even just reading and math.

“In the morning it’s just like regular school, but in the afternoon you get to do fun stuff, said Siany .”

The Syracuse University community was struck with a loss Tuesday as beloved former Football Coach Dick MacPherson died.  Coach Mac is credited with ramping up enthusiasm for the program. 

(More on Coach Mac's Career Here)

Photography by Jacqui Ipp

Masters of Scale continues this week on WAER featuring a conversation with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerber.

Officials with the Army Corps Engineers say they’re working diligently to finalize the permit decision for the Owasco Flats restoration plan.  The project will help reduce algae blooms on Owasco Lake that threaten drinking water and recreation.  

The update comes after Senator Chuck Schumer paid a visit to Owasco Lake last week to push the project forward.   It’s been six years in the making, slowly going through a series of state and local approvals.