North Country News

P199/Wikimedia

Franklin County has been one of only two counties in New York State that does not have a so-called bed tax, a levy charged by local governments on hotel stays.  Now, after nearly five years of effort, Franklin County will soon be able to implement a bed tax. 

Sally McCay/UVM Photo

The Adirondack Youth Climate Summit and the Wild Center in Tupper Lake, New York, were featured at a recent White House event on climate change education.

Plattsburgh City Hall
WAMC Photo

A Plattsburgh city councilor is raising concerns over how capital projects are funded after an allocation for $145,000 for unspecified projects came before the council for approval.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Saratoga North Creek Railway is raising the ire of environmental and conservationists over a plan to store empty railcars on its central Adirondack tracks.

U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command

The Battle of Plattsburgh Commemoration is one of the signature events in northern New York’s largest city. Organizers have introduced the schedule for next month’s event and are increasing efforts to engage and excite young people about the historical event.

At a time when debate rages over eliminating the trade embargo between the U.S. and Cuba, some relations are easing.  Americans can travel to the island country if they are a part of an approved organization.  In January, retired Plattsburgh City County Court judge Penny Clute traveled with a Canadian photography group to Cuba.  She talked about her experience with WAMC North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The surviving escapee from the Clinton Correctional Facility who was captured after a 23-day manhunt in June was in Clinton County Court this morning facing charges related to the prison break. As WAMC’s Pat Bradley reports, the brief proceeding marked the first time David Sweat was seen in public since being wounded at the end of the chase.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

New York Senator Charles Schumer was in the North Country Monday to push for passage of a bill he has introduced to enhance job opportunities for returning veterans.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Plattsburgh Charter Commission has working for months to update and revise the city’s 113-year-old governing document.   Among the questions the group had planned to present to voters in November was whether to change to a government led by a city manager and council.  That idea has been dropped and voters will now review the terms and powers of the mayor and city council.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The prisoners are long accounted for, but fallout from the 23-day manhunt for two escaped murderers continues. A New York Times report says there was widespread retribution carried out against inmates at Clinton Correctional during the search for Richard Matt and David Sweat. WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley has reaction.

 

Keurig Green Mountain says most of the layoffs it announced this week will be in Vermont.

A company spokeswoman says 200 of the 330 layoffs will be Vermont workers, mostly from Waterbury. She says the company has about 2,000 employees statewide.

Authorities say toxicology tests show prison escapee Richard Matt was drunk when fatally shot by border patrol agents in a forest in northern New York.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Adirondack Park Agency is offering an economic development initiative to all 102 communities within the Blue Line following the completion of a pilot project.

Photo of Assemblywoman Janet Duprey
NYS Assembly

The state Assembly representative for the region that includes the Clinton Correctional Facility is slamming the plea deal that the Clinton County District Attorney reached with Joyce Mitchell, who pleaded guilty this week to helping inmates Richard Matt and David Sweat escape from the maximum security prison last month. Republican Janet Duprey of the 115th district tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley justice was not served.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

One case was resolved Tuesday with a plea agreement, but there will still be more legal proceedings in the wake of the escape of Richard Matt and David Sweat from the Clinton Correctional facility.

Rob Fountain/Press Republican - pool photographer

Former Clinton Correctional employee Joyce Mitchell pleaded guilty during her arraignment in Plattsburgh today on charges related to her role in aiding the escape of Richard Matt and David Sweat from the maximum security prison in Dannemora.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The lawyer for a former New York prison employee accused of helping two murderers escape says he is working on a plea agreement.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

The University of Vermont Health Network-Champlain Valley Physicians Hospital in Plattsburgh announced the establishment of a new family medicine residency program today. As WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports, it’s supported by a million dollar grant.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

New details have emerged about the daring prison escape that captivated our region for nearly a month. New York Times reporter William Rashbaum has published a comprehensive look at how convicted murderers David Sweat and Richard Matt broke out of Clinton Correctional Facility June 6, leading to a massive 23-day manhunt that ended with Matt shot dead and Sweat wounded and in custody. Rashbaum is a senior writer with the Times.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

For nearly a decade, the Common Ground Alliance has held a one-day annual forum in the central Adirondacks.  WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley has a wrap-up of Wednesday’s meeting in Long Lake.

Adirondack Wild: Friends of the Forest Preserve

An Adirondack advocacy group has issued a new report critical of the Adirondack Park Agency and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s management of the park. As WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley reports, the DEC is disputing the findings.

Pat Bradley/WAMC

In March, Plattsburgh’s mayor appointed a citizens’ commission to draft changes to the city charter.  But with the deadline for ballot proposals looming, the mayor is now concerned that what the group is crafting will confuse voters.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman
Pat Bradley/WAMC

NYS Attorney General Eric Schneiderman was at one of the legal aid offices that provide free assistance to struggling homeowners in Plattsburgh Monday to discuss state programs that help distressed homeowners
avoid foreclosure.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The New York State DEC has proposed a snowmobile trail plan in the central Adirondacks.  The issue was up for approval at Thursday’s Adirondack Park Agency meeting.

Lake Champlain Basin Program

Every three years the Lake Champlain Basin Program releases a report assessing the quality of Lake Champlain’s waters.  The latest report indicates that despite continued efforts to lower phosphorus levels, they continue to increase.

A new exhibit opened at the Wild Center this past weekend.  North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley was at the Natural History Museum in Tupper Lake as the ribbon was cut on the Wild Walk.

Photo of Clinton Correctional
Pat Bradley/WAMC

 Steven Racette, the former superintendent of Clinton Correctional Facility is planning to retire at the end of the month.

Congress is in recess for the Fourth of July holiday.  21st Congressional District representative Republican Elise Stefanik has been traveling across her 12-county district attending various functions.  On Saturday she helped cut the ribbon to a new elevated trail at the Wild Center in Tupper Lake.  North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley caught up with Stefanik to discuss several issues, including her impression of the Wild Walk.

Mike Derrick for Congress
Mike Derrick for Congress

First-term incumbent Republican Congresswoman Elise Stefanik has a democratic challenger.  Peru, New York, native Mike Derrick has announced that he will seek the Democratic nomination in the 2016 21st Congressional district race.  The retired army colonel explained his decision to WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley.
    
Mike Derrick says one of his priorities will be to work with the Democratic leaders of the 12 counties of the 21st Congressional district to earn the Democratic nomination.

Saranac Lake Mayor Clyde Rabideau/Facebook

Orange ribbons are appearing on trees, on poles and in windows across the North Country.  It’s an effort to show support for Clinton Correctional Facility administrators and staff that many local residents feel are being made scapegoats in the aftermath of the escape of two maximum security prisoners.

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