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News stories tagged with "jefferson-county"

Thousand Islands want help on what's scenic

This summer, the Thousand Islands region is on a mission: to prove to the State of New York that it deserves recognition as an area of "Scenic and Statewide Significance." And today, leaders of the effort have launched a website where they're asking people to help make the case.  Go to full article

Life in Jefferson County? Good, not perfect

People in Jefferson County are pretty happy with their quality of life, but they have some worries. The annual Jefferson Community College survey finds 75 percent of residents think life's "getting better" or "staying the same."

Statistics students, working with the college's Center for Community Studies research staff, completed 422 telephone interviews in early April. It's a snapshot, now taken for the 15th straight year, that the college shares with the public and community leaders.

Martha Foley talked with the Director of the Center for Community Studies, Dr. Ray Petersen. What's good? Shopping, access to higher education (at the highest rate recorded since the first year of the survey), and availability of housing. And, what's not so good? The cost of energy, real estate taxes, the availability of good jobs, and the overall state of the local economy.  Go to full article
Elise Stefanik declares victory in Glens Falls Tuesday night, with her family and GOP county leaders behind her. Photo: Brian Mann
Elise Stefanik declares victory in Glens Falls Tuesday night, with her family and GOP county leaders behind her. Photo: Brian Mann

Stefanik overwhelms Doheny in NY-21 GOP primary

November's ballot is set after yesterday's primary elections. Among the races decided yesterday, Elise Stefanik beat Matt Doheny in the GOP primary for the 21st District Congressional seat opened up by Democratic Congressman Bill Owens' decision not to run this year.

Stefanik's win sent shock waves through the North Country last night. She was unknown before moving to Willsboro in Essex County last year. Yesterday, she won 60 percent of the votes in the Republican primary for the region's House seat. She toppled Watertown businessman and investment banker Matt Doheny, who was running for the third time.

After a sometimes bruising and bitter campaign, Stefanik, who is 29 years-old, won every county in the sprawling district.

We have two reports this morning, the first from Brian Mann -- who was at Stefanik's victory rally last night in Glens Falls, then from David Sommerstein, who was with Doheny supporters in Watertown.  Go to full article
A driverless tractor. Photo: <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Driverless_tractor#mediaviewer/File:Case_IH_745_XL,_Claas-M%C3%A4hdrescher.jpg">Lifetec18</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
A driverless tractor. Photo: Lifetec18, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Robots are coming to North Country farms

A Potsdam-based startup company called Agbotic is working on machines that can till soil, plant seeds, and even kill pests without a human operator. The company plans on testing the devices on St. Lawrence and Jefferson county farms this summer.  Go to full article
Baker/chef George Stevens preps chocolate chip cookies at Jean's Beans in Watertown. Photo: Todd Moe
Baker/chef George Stevens preps chocolate chip cookies at Jean's Beans in Watertown. Photo: Todd Moe

Jean's Beans in Watertown serves up six decades of home cooking

Every community has a popular cafe, coffee shop or burger joint--the place for pie or a home cooked meal. Since the early 1950's, a family-run business in Watertown has been serving up take-out food, and lots of it.  Go to full article
Taken yesterday from the Thousand Islands Bridge, looking upstream at the freighter Federal Kivalina, which had lost steering as it approached the bridge yesterday afternoon. Photo: Emmett Smith
Taken yesterday from the Thousand Islands Bridge, looking upstream at the freighter Federal Kivalina, which had lost steering as it approached the bridge yesterday afternoon. Photo: Emmett Smith

Freighter aground at Thousand Islands Bridge, salvage team on the way

Update 4:37 p.m.: The Federal Kivalina, a Hong Kong-flagged freighter carrying canola seeds, lost steering just upriver from the Thousand Islands Bridge yesterday.

Last night and this morning, a team of divers determined that the boat had run aground but is stable.

"Since then a salvage team actually arrived on the scene this afternoon," said Nancy Alcalde, director of public relations for the St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation. "They are reviewing the hull inspection as well as the water and weather conditions and are developing a plan for the safe removal of the vessel."

Two tugboats are on their way Montreal. The St. Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation and the Coast Guard have to figure out where they'll take the 656-foot freighter.

Shipping remains suspended until further notice.***

A Hong Kong-flagged freighter is anchored just upriver from the Thousand Islands Bridge, after it lost steering earlier yesterday. The Associated Press reports that shipping is suspended this morning.

There are no reported injuries to the crew and no reported pollution at this time.  Go to full article
Soldiers in the River Hospital program created these "PTSD masks", now on display at the Antique Boat Museum. Photo: David Sommerstein
Soldiers in the River Hospital program created these "PTSD masks", now on display at the Antique Boat Museum. Photo: David Sommerstein

St. Lawrence River as therapy for Ft. Drum soldiers with PTSD

A new collaboration in the Thousand Islands will allow Fort Drum soldiers with post-traumatic stress disorder to harness the healing qualities of the St. Lawrence River.

River Hospital in Alexandria Bay runs the nation's first outpatient therapy program for active-duty servicemen and women. 30 soldiers, many of them veterans of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, spend every weekday at the hospital. They use group therapy and art therapy to learn to cope with the after effects of war.

Now the soldiers will display their art work at the Antique Boat Museum in nearby Clayton.  Go to full article
Darrel Aubertine as NYS Commissioner of Agriculture in 2012. Photo: NYS
Darrel Aubertine as NYS Commissioner of Agriculture in 2012. Photo: NYS

Aubertine denies link to vote trading allegations

Allegations surfaced in the New York Post this week that longtime North Country politician Darrel Aubertine traded votes for campaign cash in 2008. The Cape Vincent Democrat denies the claims.

Martha Foley spoke with David Sommerstein to sort out who's saying what.  Go to full article
Several CSX trains carrying crude oil derailed and exploded last week in Lynchburg, VA. Photo: Elyssa Ezmirly, used with permission
Several CSX trains carrying crude oil derailed and exploded last week in Lynchburg, VA. Photo: Elyssa Ezmirly, used with permission

Feds order disclosure of crude oil train shipments

Railroads will have to tell emergency responders when and where shipments of crude oil are traveling on the rails. That's according to a new order the U.S. Department of Transportation released yesterday.

The rule comes following a string of oil train spills and explosions dating back to last summer's deadly blast in Quebec. The latest occurred last week in Lynchburg, Virginia. The DOT is also "strongly urging" oil companies to pull the most dangerous tanker cars off the rails as soon as possible.

New York Sen. Chuck Schumer praised DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx's order yesterday. "A week ago, I asked the secretary to implement this rule," Schumer said by video release, "because the number of tanker cars containing flammable crude oil that are going through our communities in upstate New York is on the dramatic increase and should, god forbid, one of those tank cars derail, it could create an explosion."

David Sommerstein joined Martha Foley to talk about the new rules.  Go to full article

Search continues for missing Black River canoeist

The search continues for a man who went missing in the Black River near Watertown when his canoe capsized 11 days ago.

The Watertown Daily Times has identified the man as John Villafranco, a 24-year-old fishing guide originally from Texas. The paper reports that Villafranco and his wife, Lydia, were canoeing together when the boat capsized. She was pulled ashore by Fort Drum soldiers and he was swept away.

The Jefferson County Sherriff's Department would not confirm the man's name. They said they have been in constant communication with the man's family, and plan to release his name once the investigation is over and his body is found.

The department says it has searched with divers, helicopters and on foot. It encourages the public to call the police if they see anything suspicious in the river, and encourages everyone to exercise caution near waterways.  Go to full article

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