City Infrastructure
6:19 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

City Lawmakers Want to Include Fixing Infrastructure Problems in This Year's Budget

Syracuse Common Councilors consider including fixing water main breaks and potholes in this year's budget proposal on Tuesday, April 15, 2014.
Credit John Smith, WAER News

The city of Syracuse’s aging infrastructure and cold temperatures last winter is causing water main breaks to become even more common.  

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Susan is the deputy news director who handles assignments and planning by the news staff. She's also a general assignment reporter who began her career at MPBN working at the State House in 1992. Since then she has covered major political and environmental stories, winning national awards for her beat reporting twice from the Society for Environmental Journalists. Her coverage of labor issues, including an investigative series on independent contractors, has also been recognized by the Public Radio News Directors, Inc and by the Associated Press. Susan is a graduate of the University of Montana where she got her first job in public radio news while still a student.

Arts & Culture
4:36 pm
Tue April 15, 2014

B.B. King Headlines 32nd M&T Jazz Fest July 11, 12 at OCC Campus

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney, right, addresses the news conference in the M&T Bank mezzanine as M&T Syracuse President Allen Naples, center, unveils two posters featuring the July 12 headliner, B.B. King.
Credit Mark Bialczak

The M&T Jazz Fest is going back to school this summer.

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Save the Rain project
8:42 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Downtown Bike Tour Shows Off Green Infrastructure

Save the Rain bike tour stopped at Erie Canal Museum to see rain garden and porous pavers used to divert water from sewers.
Credit Chris Bolt/WAER News

  About 30 people could be seen pedaling their bicycles around Onondaga County this weekend enjoying nature...but also learning about how green infrastructure is saving it.  The Save the Rain program was showing off some of the things the county is doing in its Downtown Bike Tour.

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EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT
6:38 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Onondaga Citizens League Report Warns of Underinvestment in Young Children

Sherry Cleary speaks about the "Thrive By Five" report
Credit WAER News

The Onondaga Citizens League released a report calling attention to a serious lack of investment in the community’s youngest children. The report, entitled “Thrive by Five,” acknowledges the fact that New York State is making provisions to improve kindergarten and Pre-K but warns that officials have failed to place enough emphasis on the earliest developmental stages.

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PUBLIC SAFETY
11:27 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Lawmakers Pressure Cellphone Makers, Carriers to Install Kill Switch

NY Attorney General Eric Schneiderman at Syracuse City Hall Friday with Congressmember Dan Maffei and State Senator Dave Valesky.
Credit Scott Willis / WAER News

It’s probably happened to some of us – we’re focused on checking email or texting on the go that we might not be aware of our surroundings.  Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said smartphone robberies are becoming more of a problem because it can mean easy money. 

“People who are on their smartphones often are distracted,” he said, “you know, if they’re listening to music or something. People just knock them over, grab [the cell phone], and it’s too easy.”  

NY AG Schneiderman explains how thieves cash in on stolen smartphones.

A rise in smartphone robberies is why Schneiderman and the San Francisco District Attorney began the “Secure Our Smartphones Coalition.” Unlike other cities, Syracuse is lucky and has yet to report any fatality due to cell phone robberies. However, Frank Fowler, Syracuse Police Chief, said phone thefts have risen in the past year. According to Fowler, they account for more than 1/3 of all robberies.

Robberies of any type of property places people in harm’s way. When we can discourage this type of robbery, we can have an opportunity to decrease our robberies by 35%, and that’s a great number.”    The "kill switches" would make the phones less appealing to thieves.  But Schneiderman says  there's also little incentive for manufacturers and even the service providers, who are not cooperating. 

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SU's 12th Chancellor
7:13 pm
Fri April 11, 2014

Kent Syverud Pledges Improvements, Openness at Inauguration as SU Chancellor

Kent Syverud is officially inaugurated as SU's 12th Chancellor and President. One guest, his former boss, Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O' Connor (seated second from right).
Credit Chris Bolt/WAER News

Syracuse University officially welcomed its 12th chancellor with an inauguration ceremony Friday.  Kent Syverud has already given a number of hints at the direction he plans taking in the job.

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HIGHER EDUCATION
5:46 pm
Thu April 10, 2014

Syracuse University Students Play Key Role in New Chancellor's Inauguration Festivities

SU students Adrianna Kam (left) and Allie Curtis (right) are entering a project at the Chancellor's inauguration that aims to improve self-esteem and promote leadership opportunities for teenage girls.
Credit John Smith/WAER News

Massive tents on the quad, painters in the main entrance of Hendrick’s Chapel and a walk-through balloon bouquet were all indications Thursday that something of significance will be happening soon at Syracuse University. A full day of events will coincide Friday with the inauguration of a new chancellor.  As part of the celebrations, Kent Syverud wanted to involve students by encouraging them to submit ideas for projects they would like to launch to improve the campus and local community.  Allie Curtis is one of the contestants.

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Greek 'Peak Fest' July 19
11:29 am
Thu April 10, 2014

'Peak Fest' Music Event Features Ski Resort's Summer Appeal

Greek Peak will promote its Hope Lake Lodge and other summer activities during its 'Peak Fest' Music Festival.
Credit GreekPeak.net

  Summer season might not be the time you think about heading to a ski resort. Greek Peak owners John Meier and Marc Stemerman have been skiing on the mountain for the past thirty years. But it wasn’t until last summer that they took time to enjoy the off season.

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Annie Russell is VPR's weekend producer. She has interned for NPR at Weekends on All Things Considered and for WNYC at On The Media.  She is a graduate of Columbia Journalism School. She loves the Boston Celtics unconditionally.

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