Chris Bolt

News Director

Maybe I was destined for a career in radio when I built my first stereo receiver from a Heathkit box…then later spent time running wires over beer-stained floors for local bands in Colorado bars.  I remember becoming enamored with Public Radio's story-telling style covering an exiled music group that had come to Syracuse from El Salvador.  The piece involved interviewing through an interpreter and mixing in the music with a strongly-political story of death squads.  Over the next 23 years I’ve enjoyed covering the issues, people, events, challenges and accomplishments of Central New York. 

I came to Syracuse to finish a Broadcast Journalism degree at Syracuse University’s Newhouse School.  I’ve worked at WAER since 1990 and truly enjoy our mission of educating and engaging the community, while training aspiring journalists and broadcasters.  I’m passionate about the area’s lifestyle and efforts to improve its vitality.   When not on a story, in a studio or editing and mentoring students, I can probably be found outside.  I love Central New York’s natural areas and waterways, as well as golfing and biking opportunities.  

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RX Drugs
4:52 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

New York Rates Well in Prescription Drug Report, Overdose Deaths on the Rise

Prescription Drugs
Credit HealthyAmericans.org

While other states battle rising mortality rates by prescription drug overdose New York State has one of the lowest rates in the nation. A report on prescription drug abuse from Trust for America’s Health says that New York has the sixth lowest drug overdose mortality rate in the United States. Since 1999, these rates have doubled in 29 states, tripled in ten and quadrupled in four. Prescription drug related deaths now outnumber those from cocaine and heroin combined.

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Westcott Bulb Project
12:08 pm
Mon October 7, 2013

Community Beautification Project Enjoys 11th year Growing Far out of Westcott Area

Residents picked up free flowering bulbs as part of the Westcott Bulb project this weekend.
Credit Hannah Warren/WAER News

Community volunteers gathered at the Westcott Community Center this weekend to continue a special project that's grown to other neighborhoods. 

The Westcott Bulb Project provides thousands of the bulbs every year as part of a beautification effort that also builds community between neighbors. This year, the group gave away “thirty-six hundred” bulbs.

Project Founder Peter Wirth says that since its start in 2003, the project has become much more than a way to brighten up gardens at the end of the winter.

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Criminal Justice
4:50 pm
Fri October 4, 2013

David Renz Pleads Guilty on Child Pornography Charges

David Renz in court Friday on child pornography charges

Convicted murderer and rapist David Renz pleaded guilty today to six different child pornography charges.  These are the crimes for which he was accused - and under house arrest - when he killed Lori Bresnahan and reaped a 10-year-old child. 

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Transportation
5:05 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Amtrak Agreement Means $22 Million From NYS to Keep Some Routes Running

Rail travelers in CNY could see improvements from subsidy agreement between New York and Amtrak.

Amtrak is getting $22  million of your state tax dollars…all to make sure the service continues and maybe improves.  An agreement announced today has New York picking up a portion of the costs of four specific routes, with the federal government also subsidizing a share.  Transportation Department Spokesperson Beau Duffy explains the support helps some of the busiest lines…and can perhaps lead to improvements.

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Onondaga Community College
5:57 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

OCC Building Boom Continues with New Academic and Music Building

Music Students got the cut the ribbon and open OCC's new Academic II building today.
Credit Chris Bolt/WAER News

Hundreds of students, faculty and staff at Onondaga Community College joined elected officials and business leaders in dedicating O-C-C’s newest building. 

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