Lucas Willard

Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief/Weekend Host

Lucas Willard graduated from the State University of New York at Fredonia in 2010 with a Bachelor of Science in Communications. He also attended the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in 2010, where he studied audio and multimedia storytelling.  Prior to joining WAMC in 2011, Lucas worked with the Sound and Story Project of the Hudson Valley, the Big Shed Audio Documentary Podcast, the Albany Broadcasting Company, WDVL & WCVF-FM Fredonia, and WSUC-FM Cortland.  

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Lucas Willard / WAMC

The opioid addiction crisis continues to grip upstate New York as well as the rest of the country. On Tuesday, Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer visited Schenectady to tout new legislation that is aimed at combatting the influx of fentanyl, a synthetic opioid that can be many times more potent and lethal than heroin.

Photo of an Amtrak train.
wikipedia

Following last week’s derailment at Penn Station in New York City, the U.S. Senate Minority Leader is warning feds against making cuts to Amtrak.

One of the greatest thoroughbred racehorses of all-time, Man o’ War, is being celebrated at the National Racing Museum and Hall of Fame in Saratoga Springs with a new exhibit.

A 14-year-old boy in Saratoga County is lucky to be alive after he fell into an open sewer and was swept up in rushing water.

Another change has come to Schenectady’s skyline.

New York State leaders have agreed upon a fiscal year 2018 spending plan a week after the April 1st deadline. 

Storm Drain
Robert Lawton/Wikimedia

Emergency officials were keeping a close watch for flooding this week after steady rainshowers. But as WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports, communities are largely breathing a sigh of relief.

A group of volunteers in the Saratoga County village of Corinth is looking save an historic school building on Main Street. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports the advocates are holding an informational meeting this weekend.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The New York National Guard was one of the earliest units to lend its support to the U.S. Army during World War I. Earlier today, a ceremony at the New York National Guard base in Latham marked the 100th anniversary of America’s entry into the conflict.

The New York Racing Association has launched a new mobile app where users can watch live racing on their smartphones.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

UPDATE 4/4/17 11:37 p.m.: The Shenendehowa district reported Tuesday night that voters rejected the sale 5,442 to 2,323. The original story from earlier Tuesday remains posted below. 

Residents of the Shenendehowa School District in Clifton Park are voting today on a controversial land sale that would shift 34 acres to a developer. The developer in question has pledged to donate half the land to the Town of Clifton Park. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports the referendum was brought by petition.

It’s another day of negotiations at the New York State Capitol today as lawmakers were unable to reach a budget agreement with Governor Andrew Cuomo on Saturday.

Engineering And Technology History Wiki

A former General Electric physicist who later became president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy has died.

The Daily Gazette reports Roland Schmitt died Friday afternoon in Scotia at age 93.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo
Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

After lawmakers missed the state budget deadline, shortly after midnight Democratic Governor Andrew Cuomo said he would grant the legislature a grace period over the weekend.

Officials in Schenectady are looking forward to completing the first phase of a connector trail that will bring walkers and bikers from the city’s Central Park into downtown. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard attended a meeting Thursday night to get an update.

Concerned and supportive parents attended a special Saratoga Springs City School District board meeting last night to discuss one teacher’s use of political cartoons. The lesson in question drew fire from conservative parents, two of whom appeared on Fox News last week.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

In November, voters in Saratoga Springs will decide if they want a new form of city government. The city’s Charter Review Commission gathered input on its new draft charter at a public forum Wednesday night.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The number pi goes far beyond 3.14. In fact, the mathematical constant has an infinite number of digits after its decimal. On Wednesday morning a Greenwich man made an attempt to set a new world record for memorizing the first 10,000 digits of pi. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard was there to see if he reached the record.

Governor Andrew Cuomo
Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo

Governor Andrew Cuomo is directing state police to conduct an investigation after offensive fliers were found in Western New York.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

The Mohawk River, which begins in the Southern Adirondacks and empties into the Hudson in Cohoes, has had a new health assessment.

Workers in 2016 attend to the broken pipe, preparing to weld new pieces.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Next week the city of Troy will begin work to replace a water line that burst in January 2016, impacting several nearby communities and rerouting traffic for weeks.

wikipedia.org

With social services stressed and law enforcement often overwhelmed, a growing number of counties in New York are choosing to bring legal action against manufacturers of prescription opioids as they grapple with the addiction crisis.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Capital Region developer Galesi Group is behind the massive Mohawk Harbor project in Schenectady, the location that includes the recently opened Rivers Casino. The company’s Chief Operating Officer spoke in the Electric City this morning about the past, present, and future of the site that was until recently home to a shuttered factory.

WAMC/Pat Bradley

Upstate New York Congresswoman Elise Stefanik is applauding an amendment to House Republicans’ federal health care plan. Meantime, a progressive group is preparing another protest outside her district office.

ballot box
Wikimedia Commons

Tuesday was a busy day for village elections. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief reports on some of the places in our region that will see new leadership.

Rob Allen / Twitter

The Rensselaer County Village of Hoosick Falls Board of Trustees will have two new faces after candidates ran unopposed Tuesday. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports the newcomers hope to move the village past looming environmental issues.

Due to last week's snowstorm, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has rescheduled a meeting for April 4th to discuss the next phase of a Superfund cleanup project in the Schenectady County town of Glenville.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

There will at least be one new face on the Saratoga Springs city council next year. WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports a three-term commissioner is stepping down and has already chosen who he’d like to see replace him.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Democratic U.S. Senator Charles Schumer has doubts about the viability of President Donald Trump’s proposed budget. The Senate Minority leader aired his thoughts on the budget plan in Saratoga County Thursday.

As the state Department of Environmental Conservation continues to investigate the presence of toxic chemicals known as PFC’s in upstate New York, the presence of PFOA and PFOS has been detected at a composting facility in Washington County.

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