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North Country News

Vermont Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Vermont Lieutenant Governor David Zuckerman is going to be seeking to oust incumbent GOP Governor Phil Scott in the November General Election. 

Emerald Ash Borer
courtesy NYS DEC

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation confirmed this week that an invasive beetle that kills ash trees has been found in the southern Adirondacks for the first time.

Plattsburgh Mayor Colin Read proposes annexation of town land in August 2018
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Plattsburgh Common Council recently approved a measure authorizing the mayor to formally petition the adjacent town annex over 200 acres of land.  The plan has been pending for two years.

SUNY Plattsburgh President Alexander Enyedi
SUNY Plattsburgh

SUNY Plattsburgh has issued its Fall 2020 Restart Plan. The 68-page document outlines physical and procedural changes the college has implemented to make the campus safer for students, faculty and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.  The plan says the college is working toward a “blended academic delivery model.” College President Dr. Alexander Enyedi tells WAMC’s North Country Bureau Chief Pat Bradley when college officials began working on the plan, they knew having a regular face to face semester would be impossible.

Congresswoman Elise Stefanik
U.S. House

Campus leaders have been working for months to plan the fall semester in the midst of a global pandemic. Northern New York Congresswoman Elise Stefanik has been holding conference calls with various sectors of the economy to discuss COVID-19. On Monday she met virtually with higher education officials from across the district.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is surrounded by regional officials as she discusses the need for local government aid
Pat Bradley/WAMC

New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand was in Plattsburgh Friday afternoon to make the case for the Senate to pass legislation that provides direct financial relief to local governments struggling with the economic fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Snowplow with salt/sand (file)
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The New York state Legislature has passed a measure that will create a pilot program to reduce the use of road salt in the Adirondacks.

Aerial photo of the Trudeau Institute in Saranac Lake (file)
Trudeau Institute

The Saranac Lake Chamber of Commerce recently named Adirondack Health and the Trudeau Institute joint businesses of the year due to their work to help the regional community during the COVID-19 pandemic.  As the award was presented, the conversation included a look at what role the Institute plays in global pandemic vaccine research.

Adirondack Park sign
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The Adirondack Common Ground Alliance is a diverse group representing advocates, educators, government and residents of the park.  It meets once a year to craft strategies to communicate key priorities for the Adirondacks in one voice.  This year’s forum was held virtually due to the pandemic and focused on the demographics of the Park.

COVID-19 was first identified in December 2019 in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China and has now been detected in 37 locations across the globe, including in the U.S., according to the CDC.
Composite Image by Dave Lucas (WAMC / cdc.gov)

The Clinton County Health Department says three people who attended a party in northern New York have tested positive for COVID-19.

map of Saranac River from Lake Champlain to Imperial Dam
NYS Department of Environmental Conservation

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has released its final plan to refurbish a dam on the Saranac River near Plattsburgh.

Officials installed a new interpretive panel at the base of the Champlain Monument in Plattsburgh
Pat Bradley/WAMC

A statue of Samuel de Champlain overlooks Lake Champlain in Plattsburgh.  A Native American and a guideboat are below him on the pedestal. There are a number of factual errors on the statue — most obvious, a Plains Indian headdress on the native guide.  Rather than tear down the monument due to the inaccuracies, Plattsburgh officials have instead installed a plaque explaining the errors.

U.S. Canada border crossing at Champlain-LaColle
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The U.S. and Canada have agreed to keep their shared borders closed to non-essential traffic until at least late August because of COVID-19.

Rep. Elise Stefanik
WAMC/Pat Bradley

State travel restrictions and the closure of the U.S./Canada border during the coronavirus pandemic has put severe stresses on northern New York’s tourism industry.  New York’s 21st Congressional District spans the state’s northern region and straddles the border from Watertown to Lake Champlain. Representative Elise Stefanik recently held a virtual roundtable to discuss the pandemic’s impact and update the industry leaders on remedial actions in Washington.

A school district in northern New York is retiring the school’s mascot and nickname: the Indians.

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand tours a Trudeau Institute lab
The Trudeau Institute

New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand was in Saranac Lake this morning to tour the Trudeau Institute and to promote legislation to get people back into the workforce.

A black bear
New York State Department of Environmental Conservation

Campsites and lean-tos that were temporarily closed in some areas of the Adirondacks have been re-opened.

From left: Garry Douglas, Jim Malatras and Ray DiPasquale hold partnership agreements
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The president of Empire State College was in Plattsburgh today to sign separate partnership agreements with the local chamber of commerce and the community college.

Absentee ballots from a ward's district stacked and ready to be processed
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Seeking a second term, the mayor of Plattsburgh has lost the Democratic primary. The Clinton County Board of Elections counted absentee and mail-in ballots for last Tuesday’s primary this morning.

The New York state Department of Health is investigating possible exposure to COVID-19 during a church service in Ticonderoga.

Champlain Centre mall logo on a podium
Pat Bradley/WAMC

Although New York’s North Country region is in Phase 4 of re-opening from coronavirus shutdowns, indoor malls remain closed. Officials gathered in front of the Champlain Centre mall in Plattsburgh Monday to call on the Cuomo administration to issue guidance to reopen malls.

Democratic Plattsburgh mayoral candidates (from left) Chris Rosenquest, Colin Read and Tenzin Dorgee
Facebook campaign pages

In a three-way Democratic primary, Plattsburgh’s incumbent mayor is trailing one of his challengers before absentee ballots are tabulated.

View of the Adirondacks from the Keene Valley area
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation has released an interim report with recommendations to deal with overuse of the High Peaks region of the Adirondacks.

Plattsburgh police car at night
Pat Bradley/WAMC

The city of Plattsburgh’s Police Department recently revised its Use of Force Policy to incorporate the national “8 Can’t Wait” recommendations and codify de-escalation requirements.  The mayor then announced a citizens’ panel to advise city leaders on community policing and make recommendations on further police oversight.

Democratic Plattsburgh mayoral candidates (from left) Chris Rosenquest, Colin Read and Tenzin Dorgee
Facebook campaign pages

There are three Democrats running for mayor in northern New York’s largest city including the incumbent. While one challenger doubts he will win today’s primary, the other two are expected to contend the race all the way through Plattsburgh’s general election.

View of the Adirondacks from the Keene Valley area
Pat Bradley/WAMC


Plattsburgh City Hall
WAMC Photo

Plattsburgh Mayor Colin Read is discussing his proposed 2021 budget, which is being criticized for being released early and close to the Democratic mayoral primary.

U.S. Canada border crossing at Champlain-LaColle
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The border between Canada and the U.S. will remain closed to non-essential travelers for another month.  While North Country interests had expected the border to remain closed, they are blasting federal officials for not crafting a plan for future opening.

Plattsburgh City Hall
WAMC

Three individuals are running in Tuesday’s Democratic primary for mayor of Plattsburgh including the incumbent. They recently debated in a sparsely populated auditorium due to coronavirus restrictions.

U.S. Canada border crossing at Champlain-LaColle
WAMC/Pat Bradley

Canada and the U.S. have extended to July 21 an agreement that keeps the border between the two countries closed to non-essential travel during the coronavirus pandemic.

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