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Scott Willis / WAER News

Syracuse-area congressmember John Katko says he’s very happy with the 10-year, $1.5 trillion dollar tax reform bill approved by Congress, especially with what he was able to persuade leadership to restore. 

"For example, the private activity bonds, which are key to hospitals and others; the historic preservation tax credit; and of course, all the things they were trying to do to tax students, which was crazy to me."

irs.gov

A Cornell University Professor Law who specializes in financial and monetary law and economics is not impressed by the G-O-P’s $1.5-Trillion federal tax cut bill.  Robert Hockett feels that the Republican majority had a lack-luster year of getting things done and this was its last chance.  He calls the plan, which places a cap on state and local tax deductions - a Civil War Tax Bill.

twitter.com/syracusezoo

The Rosamond Gifford Zoo is starting the process of designing a $7 million animal hospital to replace its aging and undersized clinic and quarantine space.  Zoo director Ted Fox says it’s one of the first priorities in their master strategic plan to meet the needs of their growing collection, and to maintain accreditation.

file photo / WAER News

Former Green Party common council candidate Frank Cetera continues to pressure sitting council members for a more public process to consider candidates to fill an at-large seat in January.  But it appears councilors aren’t willing to change their appointment practice this time around.

The seat will open up once Helen Hudson takes the oath as the council’s new President.  City charter grants sitting councilors at the time of the vacancy the authority to make the appointment.  But Cetera feels there’s room for more public input..without changing the charter..yet.

State Budget Outlook is Grim for 2018

Dec 18, 2017
budget.ny.gov

With a projected multi billion dollar deficit and looming federal changes that could cost the state billions more, The biggest obstacle in the upcoming 2018 legislative session will be balancing the state budget.

The second highest ranking Republican in the Senate, John DeFrancisco, says the budget will be “horrible”, and the worst in at least seven years..

I think it’s going to be very, very difficult,” DeFrancisco said. “Probably the most difficult budget year the governor has had since he’s been governor.”

Scott Willis / WAER News

About 1,000 Onondaga County Families are getting access to more resources to help children with language and reading through in-home visits.  The national “Talking is Teaching: Talk Read Sing” campaign designed to encourage parents to engage in language-rich activities with their children at an early age.

facebook.com/RepClaudiaTenney

Utica-area Congressmember Claudia Tenney says it appears the final tax reform bill will include most of the provisions she’s fought for over the past few weeks.  But that doesn’t mean she isn’t continuing to advocate for New York.  Tenney knows the legislation continues to change, and so far she says, it’s been for the better.

"There's a lot on it.  We're not sure what the final bill is going to look like, but it's been improved."     

Scott Willis / WAER News

More than a decade after it closed, the former Camillus Cutlery headquarters in the Village of Camillus has been renovated into mixed-used commercial, retail, and residential space.   For years, revitalization of the 115-year-old building seemed almost impossible.  Original redevelopment plans fell through, and a fire burned down the former factory next door in 2013.  Now, developer Doug Sutherland and Mayor Patricia Butler-Rhoades reflect on the $9.7 million transformation into Camillus Mills.

University Hill Corporation

Development around Syracuse University and along the Genesee Street corridor is leading to ‘transformation.’  That was the message from the University Hill Corporation at its annual meeting today.  President David Mankiewicz draws attention to numerous housing and other projects underway right now. 

“The Marshall, a $40.5-million mixed-use complex, is being built at 727 S. Crouse Ave.  Pete Campus is constructing Theory Syracuse, a 604 bed, $66-million project.  The 505 on Walnut; it represents an investment of $46.4 million.”

Pixabay

This week on Science on the Radio Dr. Marvin Druger is talking about the Drosophila, often known as the fruit fly. You have probably seen these little guys before as they as they typically boast a pale yellow to reddish brown to black exterior with red eyes.

They can be found in deserts, tropical rainforests, cities, swamps and alpine zones. And that's just the tip of it, Dr. Marvin Druger tell us much more about these curious little insects.

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