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posticon Warren Road DOT Location Sparks Bitter Response From Neighbors

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By Dan Veaner Print
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The NYSDOT held two open houses Wednesday to explain their new Warren Road location

The New York State Department Of transportation (DOT) held two open houses and a public hearing in Lansing Wednesday to explain a project that will move their current 3rd Street Cayuga Inlet waterfront property to a 15.55 acre parcel on Warren Road immediately south of Hillcrest Road, that is currently owned by Ithaca Tompkins Regional Airport.  NYS DOT representative Kathleen Joy presented the Town Planning Board an overview of the project and the process of acquiring the land from Tompkins County at their meeting Monday.

"Because it's airport property owned by the County, the Federal Aviation Administration has to approve of this transfer," she explained. "They go through a 'deed of release' process to make sure it is no longer used for aviation purposes.  Related to that, there is an environmental assessment that needs to be done.  That has been completed."

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posticon Update On Significant Winter Storm

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By New York State Governor's Office Print
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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo updated New Yorkers Thursday on the impending weather systems that are forecasted to result in a significant snowfall for the majority of the state, as well as the state's preparations. The first of two storm systems will spread across the State on Thursday evening, with two to five inches of snow expected through Upstate. Over the weekend, New Yorkers can expect to experience 12 to 24 inches of snow during a second storm system. The Governor yesterday activated the State Emergency Operations Center to enhanced monitoring mode, and assets are prepared to be deployed to keep roads and communities safe.

 "The forecasts continue to show New York is set to receive a significant snowfall over the next several days and it is imperative that New Yorkers stay informed and take every precaution before these storms hit," Cuomo said. "We are monitoring these storms closely and are ready to deploy significant state resources and personnel so that we can quickly respond to any community that needs help."

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posticon Curbside Plastic Recycling Reduced

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By Dan Veaner Print
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Lansing Supervisor Ed LaVigne noted Wednesday at the January Town Board meeting that the Tompkins County Department of Recycling and Materials Management sent a notice that fewer plastic recyclables are being accepted for curbside collection.  Plastic containers labeled with numbers 1, 2, and 5 are being accepted.  3, 4, 6, and 7 are not.

"People actually have had some things picked out and left there when they recycled," he said.  "My understanding is it is because the Chinese are not taking some of the recyclables."

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posticon County Moves Toward Establishing Veterans Services Agency

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By Marcia E. Lynch Print
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The Legislature’s Health and Human Services Committee today heard a presentation from Deputy County Administrator Lisa Holmes regarding Tompkins County Veterans Services, as the County prepares to establish the County Veterans Services Agency. The 2019 Tompkins County Budget allocated $100,000 to support the Veterans Services Agency, which is required under New York State Executive Law.

Deputy Administrator Holmes told legislators that County Veterans Services Agencies connects individuals to U.S. Veterans Affairs (VA) services—compensation for service‐connected disabilities; pension for non‐service‐connected disabilities; compensation/pension to families of deceased veterans; burial benefits and grave markers; life insurance; health care; education and vocational rehabilitation; and home loan guarantees—as well as to military records, Federal, State and local medals and awards, and New York State Blind Annuity benefits. As of 2017, Tompkins County’s veteran population stood at nearly 4,100, with veterans bringing in $23.4 million of VA benefits to Tompkins County.

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posticon Bottle Bill Expansion And Plastic Bag Ban To Be Included In 2019 State Executive Budget

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By NYS Governor's Office and Local Reporting Print
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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced this week a bottle bill expansion and a plastic bag ban will be included in the 2019 Executive Budget. To combat litter, help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and protect the environment for future generations, the Governor is advancing legislation to expand New York's Bottle Bill to make most non-alcoholic drink containers eligible for 5 cent redemption. Additionally, Governor Cuomo will advance legislation to ban all single-use plastic bags.

Locally, Tompkins County Legislator Mike Sigler reported to the Lansing Town Board Wednesday that the County Legislature passed a resolution Tuesday urging the New York State Legislature to reduce recycling and reduce municipal waste management costs by expanding the NYS Returnable Container Act to include wine, liquor, and other glass beverage containers.

"Some bottles, like Gatorade -- I think that should be included," Sigler said. "Wine bottles, liquor bottles... a lot more people are drinking wine, so that should be included, too. This seems like low hanging fruit for us."

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posticon State Agencies To Help Furloughed Federal Workers

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By New York State Governor's Office Print
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Locally, the Lansing Food Pantry is offering assistance to TSA workers at the Ithaca-Tompkins Airport for the duration of the federal shutdown.
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo directed state agencies Thursday to provide support for federal workers impacted by the federal government shutdown that now exceeds the record for the longest government shutdown in United States history. The Governor called for the New York State Department of Labor to provide increased support to workers seeking unemployment insurance benefits and the State's Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance to help those working without pay apply for and obtain public assistance benefits.

"It is unconscionable that the President is holding hostage the wages and livelihoods of hard-working Americans in an attempt to advance his hateful and regressive political agenda," Governor Cuomo said. "While the federal administration steps on the backs of workers, New York State is stepping up to help in any way we can. These measures will ensure furloughed federal workers in New York receive prompt and special one-on-one services so they can obtain the vital safety-net benefits they need during this hard time."

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posticon School Tax Levy Growth To Remain At Two Percent

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By New York State Comptroller's Office Print
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For the second year in a row, property tax levy growth for school districts will be capped at 2 percent, according to data released today by State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli. This 2 percent cap affects the tax cap calculations for 676 school districts as well as 10 cities with fiscal years starting July 1, 2019 including the "Big Four" cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers.

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posticon County Legislature Highlights

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By Marcia E. Lynch Print
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Legislature Chair Robertson Delivers 2019 Annual Message, Announces 2019 Organizational Structure
Characterizing the year ahead as one of "Building On, Building Up," Legislature Chair Martha Robertson delivered her annual message before the Tompkins County Legislature. "2019 will be a year for building – building on the foundations we set in 2018, building toward goals we should set for the next three years. And probably, building up, literally," she said. Noting that the first year, or 25 percent, of the Legislature's four-year term is completed, she asked, "What will be have to show for the next 75 percent?"

Among the elements of 'building' Chair Robertson identifies are building on the work of the County's staff: "Whatever we might accomplish as legislators is built on the work of our staff," she states. "It may sound obvious, but we couldn't do anything without them. The work we do together is a team sport, and we legislators owe a debt of gratitude to the people who serve our community every day." The Chair also identifies building on relationships, such as those started with New York State, and with the Federal government, where she notes that five members of the New York delegation are committee chairs in Congress this session. "This year we will be all about building in a literal sense," Robertson adds, for example, with renovations to the Old Jail; evaluating the Tioga Street property and overseeing that project if it moves forward; reaching a decision about the jail and about a possible shared law enforcement facility with the City of Ithaca; and supporting more local housing construction as well, helping to create a more sustainable and equitable community for all who want to live here.

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posticon Governor Proposes to Make Assaulting The Press A Felony

News | Friday, January 18, 2019 | By New York State Governor's Office Print
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Governor Andrew M. Cuomo announced a proposal Wednesday to increase criminal penalties for assaulting the press is included in the 2019 Executive Budget. In order to provide additional protections for journalists in light of recent acts of violence against members of the media, the Governor is advancing legislation would increase the penalties of assault against a journalist while performing their journalistic job duties to a felony level offense.

"Reporters have a tough enough job as it and it is unacceptable and unconscionable that they increasingly have to endure the threat of physical harm for just for doing their jobs," Governor Cuomo said. "While the current federal administration is fostering an environment that normalizes and even encourages attacks on the press, New York is taking a stand. It is my hope that other states join us in enacting these protections into law once and for all."

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