Onondaga County

Scott Willis / WAER News

Onondaga County’s health commissioner says recent rankings of the community’s overall health indicate our behaviors are more of a factor in determining health outcomes more than the availability and quality of care. While residents can make better choices, social and economic factors also come in to play. 

Commissioner Dr. Indu Gupta says the big picture is key when looking at a person’s overall health. 

"In public health we say ‘everything affects health,’ and then also ‘health affects everything.’"

Chris Bolt / WAER News

A new AAA report shows that nearly 4,000 tickets were issued to motorists in Onondaga County in 2015 for using their cell phones and texting while driving.  Legislative analyst and report author Alex Slatky called the situation ‘an epidemic’ and said people need to be more aware of the severity of distracted driving.

Plastic Bag Waste Becoming a Growing Concern in New York State

Mar 27, 2017
Scott Willis / WAER News

Twenty-three billion. That’s the number of plastic bags New Yorkers use every year. Governor Andrew Cuomo recently launched a task force to address the issue. Onondaga County Resource Recovery Agency Executive Director Dereth Glance says plastic bags never really break down and decompose. If they’re not recycled properly, Glance says they can cause harm to the environment.

Jason Chen / WAER News

Onondaga County is taking steps to reduce animal abuse in Central New York. Sheriff Eugene Conway today announced that his office would create and host an animal abuser registry to prevent animals from falling into the hands of abusers.

“Animal cruelty is a serious problem, and while New York has criminalized the cruel treatment of animals, animal abuse and cruelty continues to occur here in Onondaga County and elsewhere.”

nysba.org

The New York State Bar Association is joining civil liberties and other groups in trying to get better legal help for the state’s poor citizens.  Onondaga County is at the center of the controversy over providing fair legal representation.

John Smith

An Onondaga County grand jury has concluded that a Syracuse police officer was justified in the fatal shooting of Deric Brown last month when he opened fire on the officer. County District Attorney William Fitzpatrick said officer Joseph Mauro III was performing a routine traffic stop on Walnut Avenue near Madison Street.

FOCUS Greater Syracuse

As Onondaga Lake visitors get to enjoy expanded amenities such as the West Lake Trail, County officials have previously indicated a beach could possibly be added someday.  A new survey released today asks Central New York Residents what they envision for the lake including recreational activities.  FOCUS Greater Syracuse is offering the online survey on their website.  Spokesperson Dee Klees says this is different from the other lake surveys they’ve conducted in the past.

The leader of the union representing 2,300 Onondaga County workers says they’re more unified than ever after rejecting their third tentative contract agreement in 18 months.   The dispute now enters the final phase of the impasse process.

The vote late Tuesday was 1,057 to 747 to turn down the contract, which would have been retroactive to 2013.  President of CSEA Local 834 Kathy Zabinski says the biggest issue continues to be the cost of health insurance.  

John Smith/WAER News

Just before the foot of the bridge on US Route 11 North that crosses over the New York State Canal in Brewerton where drivers are about to leave Onondaga County and magically cross over into Oswego County on the other side is a park you might miss the entrance to. That’s because there is no official entrance.  

John Smith/WAER News

  Some Onondaga County residents took the morning off from work to be thrust into poverty; based on real-life situations… so they can make a difference.

More than 120 people were cast into the lives of 15 families and jam packed their one week schedule of challenges into 15 minute increments.  These aren’t professional  actors here but people taking part in the simulation took on realistic roles.

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