Archives for January 2017

Malone Chamber seeks local artists for coloring book

The adult coloring book craze isn’t winding down…and now the Malone Chamber of Commerce wants to get in on the action. They’re looking for local artists to create black-and-white drawings that depict scenes from around Malone to put into a coloring book. The book will be used as an advertisment for the town. Submissions are due by Feb. 28th and the new coloring book is due out in March. Anyone interested should contact the Chamber.

Jones praises passages of ethics bills

Assemblyman Billy Jones is pushing a new ethics bill. The bill, which was passed by the assembly, would strip taxpayer-funded pensions from any public officials convicted of corruption. A joint resolution that would require legislators to reveal information about their outside income was also approved. Jones says policitians who abuse their power should be held responsible for the crimes they commit. Because this is the second time the forefeiture bill has been passed, it can now be placed on the November ballot. “The North Country deserves a government that puts the interest of hardworking families first,” Jones said. “Public officials are sent to represent the best interests of our communities and the people who elected them. If they betray the trust of the voters, they’ll have to answer for it.”

Push for “Tobacco 21” law in Albany

Public health groups are calling on the Governor and state legislature to raise the smoking age in New York to 21. Representatives from several groups, including the American Lung Association and the cancer society are meeting with lawmakers in Albany today to push for the “Tobacco 21” measure. The Lung Association says more than 1 in 4 high school students are using at least one tobacco produce and that smoking is costing the state $10 billion a year in health care costs.

Clean-up continues after Citizen Advocates fire

Nearly three weeks after a fire tore through their vocational training site on Creighton Road, Citizen Advocates is continuing the clean-up. The fire destroyed Adirondack Wood Furnishings and damaged the bottle redemption business next door. The fire displaced nearly 200 developmentally disabled workers and staff. Citizen Advocates said all of those people were relocated to other facilites. A report on the cause of the fire is expected soon.

Forecasters calling for snow this weekend

Forecasters at the National Weather Service are predicting lake-effect storms this weekend for areas east of the Great Lakes, with two feet of snow or more possible in some areas. Lake-effect snow watches have been issued starting Thursday for Oswego, Lewis and Jefferson counties in the Tug Hill region.Winds from 15 to 25 miles per hour with stronger gusts will produce blowing and drifting snow at times. The weekend storms come on the weekend marking the 40th anniversary of the Blizzard of ’77, which killed 29 people in the Buffalo area. The Malone area isn’t expected to get nearly as much snow from this system, but anywhere from 2 to 6 inches is possible…with the higher amounts in southern Franklin County.

St. Regis Mohawk Tribe submits application to expand territory

The St. Regis Mohawk Tribe has turned in an application to add two parcels of tribal-owned land placed into trust. One parcel is in Franklin County…about 63.5 acres of vacant land. The other is in St. Lawrence…15 acres with two buildings that the tribe plans to use for programs. Both parcels would then be part of the reservation and not subject to state or federal taxes. This is the second time the tribe has asked to expand their territory. The last time was in 2007 and it took the courts until 2014 to finally approve the application. Tribal Chief Eric Thompson is urging Franklin County leaders to approve the deal and move towards a settlement, like St. Lawrence County did in 2014.

India national caught by Border Patrol

A 43-year-old man from India has been arrested after crossing the border illegally near Burke. Manish Patel was already wanted on multiple felony charges, including attempted homicide of an unborn child. Candaian border patrol agents at the Trout River Port of Entry found a suspicious car and a driver, alone. The following morning, border patrol agents on the US side spotted the same car a few hours later. This time, there was another man in the car. They were taken to the Burke Station and questioned. That’s when they identified Patel. He’s now being held without bond. He will be turned over to US Marshals pending extridition to Wisconsin to answer to additional criminal charges.

New 3D mammography offered at UVM-Alice Hyde

Alice Hyde Medical Center is now offering 3D Mammography. The cut the ribbon on their new machine, which will allow doctors to hopefully find cancer earlier. The hospital says women with dense breasts will see significant benefits because the 3D technology helps to see what’s behind normal breast tissue. The community raised a lot of money for this unit, nearly $72,000. Hospital President Doug DiVello says the outpouring of generosity has been “incredible.”

MITCHELL TO GO BEFORE PAROLE BOARD

A former prison employee will have her first opportunity to get released from prison next month. Ed Histed has that story…

((Joyce Mitchell, who formerly worked at the Clinton Correctional Facility, but threw that all away when she helped David Sweat and Richard Matt escape from the maximum-security facility, will appear sometime during the week of February 6th before the state Board of Parole. If she is successful, she could actually be released from prison as early as October 8th, after serving the minimum time she was ordered to serve. Mitchell was sentenced in September of 2015 to 2 1/3 to seven years in prison after she pled guilty felony charges in connection with helping Sweat and Matt escape. She is currently being held at the Bedford Hills Correctional Facility. Now, both supporters and those who are against her possible release, are invited to submit letters to the Parole Board online at www.doccs.ny.gov The only other prison employee charged in the escape was former corrections officer Gene Palmer, who served four months of a six-month sentence.))

Cigna to begin offering coverage for mental health tests under deal with AG’s office

Cigna will have to start offering policies that cover psychiatric conditions and autism spectrum disorders. Attorney General Eric Schniederman announced Monday that his office reached a deal with Cigna. He says mental health services must be covered like any other medical treatment. The investigation launched last year after a clause in Cigna’s policies read that the testing wasn’t considered medically necessary. The health insurer will now comply with Timothy’s Law, which was enacted after a 13-year-old committed suicide. His insurance company wouldn’t pay for ongoing coverage of his serious mental health issues. Cigna will also have to pay a $50,000 penalty.