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posticon Town Considers Trailways Capital Reserve

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Dan Veaner Print
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Lansing Center Trail

The Lansing Town Board is considering a new capital reserve fund that would be used to maintain and expand the trail system.  Once established, money would be put into the fund as projects are developed. 

"The funds could be used for acquiring land for these connected trails," said Councilwoman Katrina Binkewicz.  "Perhaps a commuter greenway trail between here and the Village as a high priority.  A trail between the town center and the schools, which would improve safety."

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posticon Local Municipalities Struggle To Consolidate Services

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Dan Veaner Print
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Lansing Schools Near Cayuga Lake

With Albany leaning on local governments to consolidate services, and even, in some cases to consolidate villages with their surrounding towns, the Town and Village of Lansing and Lansing School District are among several municipalities in Tompkins County that are struggling to comply.  County Administrator Joe Mareane has been meeting with supervisors and mayors from governments within Tompkins County to work out a plan for sharing services that will satisfy Albany.  But some local officials are finding the process difficult.

"I am finding it very frustrating," said Mayor Donald Hartill at a recent Village of Lansing trustees meeting.  "I'm going along because I have to, but it certainly isn't a positive experience.  At the first meeting I argued to just tell the (state) government to go stuff it.  That didn't go over very well.  It's this continual relentless trying to manage from the top.  It doesn't work too well."

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posticon Broad Support in Tompkins County for Repowering and Renewables

News | Tuesday, June 20, 2017 | By - Print
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A poll of Tompkins County residents shows broad and firm support across all demographic groups for the repowering of the Cayuga Operating Company coal plant to natural gas and renewable energy sources. The positive poll results follow the May 31st announcement that Cayuga Operating Company plans to construct one of New York's largest solar farms at its existing site.

Residents surveyed were asked for their reaction to the following statement: "The Cayuga Operating Company is considering a plan to convert its power plant in Lansing from coal to natural gas without a public subsidy and also build a large solar farm on the property."

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posticon Lansing School Tax Stabilization Reserve Bills Introduced

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Dan Veaner Print
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NYS Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton and Senator Pam Helming introduced bills Wednesday that would allow the Lansing School District to create a Tax Stabilization Reserve Fund. In the face of draconian revenue loss from the devaluation of the Cayuga Power Plant a Tax Stabilization Reserve Fund to gradually save money now to avoid large tax rate hikes later. A year and a half ago Lansing Schools Business Administrator Mary June King proposed creating the reserve as one of many measures school officials were considering to try to stabilize school taxes. But there was a catch: the district could only establish the reserve if the state legislature enacted it into law.

"Our intention is for our advocacy group to get involved in working with our state legislators to get them -- it's got to be a legislative action -- to give us special dispensation to create a reserve relative to this power plant," King explained to the Board Of Education at a January of 2016 meeting.

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posticon Lansing Democrats Choose Town Board Candidates

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By - Print
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The Lansing Democratic Committee announced yesterday that Joseph Wetmore and Walaa Maharem-Horan will be candidates for Lansing Town Board in the November 2017 local election. They will challenge Republican incumbents Robert Cree and Doug Dake. Cree is running for a third term, and Dake his second.

Wetmore is a resident of North Lansing, and Maharem-Horan is a resident of South Lansing. The Tompkins County Democratic Committee says they plan to advocate for transparency in all town government affairs in order to be accountable to all members of the Lansing community. If elected, both candidates plan to build on their prior volunteer experience in Lansing and the County to promote the vitality of Lansing and support increased citizen participation in advisory capacities in order to ensure that Town Board decisions represent residents’ opinions about what is important to the future of the Lansing Community.

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posticon Committee Revises TC3 Budget Recommendation

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Marcia E. Lynch Print
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tc3The Legislature's Budget, Capital, and Personnel Committee today revised its recommendation on the Tompkins Cortland Community College operating budget for the coming academic year, recommending adoption of a budget that contains no increase in sponsor support, rather than the 1% increase recommended May 31st.

Since that time, Cortland County's budget committee failed to support the proposed budget, containing the 1% increase, and both counties, considered a single sponsor by the State, must agree on the level of sponsor support. The revised recommendation decreases total sponsor support to $4,650,364 (from $4,696,867), split between the two counties based on proportional student enrollment—64% from Tompkins County and 36% from Cortland. The committee approved the change by a unanimous 4-0 vote (Legislator Dan Klein was excused), but committee members expressed frustration at having to reconsider support of the 1% increase.

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posticon State Senate passes Brittany's Law for the Seventh Consecutive Year

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Office of NYS Senator Pam Helming Print
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New York State Senator Pamela A. Helming (R,C,I-Canandaigua) applauded the passage of Brittany's Law (S.1107), which would establish a violent felony offender registry. This legislation, which Senator Helming co-sponsors, is named after Brittany Passalacqua, who was brutally murdered along with her mother, Helen Buchel, in Geneva, NY in 2009. The man convicted of killing Brittany and her mother, John Edward Brown, was a parolee released from prison after serving only 2 ½ years of a 3-year sentence for violently assaulting his infant daughter in 2003. Senator Helming adamantly believes a violent felony offender registry will help decrease the number of domestic violence incidents in the future.

"We never expect crimes this heinous to occur in our own communities, but they do. Sadly, the system currently in place failed to protect Brittany and her mother, Helen. This registry is common sense. We have a registry for gun owners, for sex offenders, and even for those who abuse animals (in New York City), yet there is no registry to keep track of violent felons. Had there been a mechanism in place to track Brittany and Helen's killer after his early release from prison, the two of them might still be alive," Helming said. "With the passage of this critical legislation, the Senate sent a strong message that we recognize it is government's foremost responsibility to keep our families and communities safe. How many more families will endure the pain and suffering that Brittany's family has before this legislation is passed by the Assembly? The Assembly Majority needs to stop playing politics and pass Brittany's Law now, so that we may prevent a situation like what happened to Brittany and her mother from happening to others."

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posticon Bill to Lower Cost of Alternative Energy Options for Farmers Introduced

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Office of Congressman Tom Reed Print
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Washington, DC- U.S. Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY) and U.S. Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced the bipartisan Agricultural Environmental Stewardship Act, which provides tax incentives for farmers and rural electric cooperatives to invest in biogas and nutrient recovery technology.

"We must help our dairy farmers find a cost effective way to use processes that are environmentally friendly. This tax credit will make these new technologies more affordable and the use of such methods will benefit our communities," said Congressman Reed.

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posticon Helming Supports Child and Family Abuse Measures

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Office of NYS Senator Pam Helming Print
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Senator Pamela A. Helming (R,C,I-Canandaigua) announced two bills she sponsors passed the Senate earlier this week, as part of a package of legislation intended to safeguard children and families against abuse and exploitation. Specifically, Helming's bills aim to increase protections for victims and employees at domestic violence shelters and to strengthen penalties for failing to register as a sex offender.

"These shelters are supposed to serve as a safe haven for individuals and families who are victims of domestic violence, which is why we need to make crimes against these individuals seeking shelter more serious. However, in order to protect these individuals, we also need to ensure that the employees of these shelters are safe as well," Helming said. "We've seen in the past that those seeking shelter have not been the only ones at risk. There have been instances in domestic violence cases where the abuser cannot get to the victim and will instead attack an employee of a shelter as way to send a message. By making it assault in the second degree, we are sending a message to the perpetrators that we will not tolerate further harm on our victims nor the employees of these shelters."

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posticon Reed, Sanchez Introduce LEAP Act

News | Friday, June 16, 2017 | By Office of Congressman Tom Reed Print
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Washington, DC - Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY) and Congresswoman Linda Sanchez (D-CA) are set to re-introduce the Leveraging and Energizing America's Apprentice Programs, or LEAP Act. The bill is designed to increase apprenticeships through a new federal tax credit for employers.

"We must work to help individuals get the training they need for the jobs of today and tomorrow. This tax credit will serve to increase apprenticeships and get people the skills they need for good paying jobs," Reed stated.

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