Haircuts Are Phase 2

Broome County’s Executive Jason Garnar said if the region continues to fulfill the reopening criteria set by the state, it could see Phase 2 on May 29th.

Akshar Accusations Talking Point In Broome DA Race

Last week, a story broke that 52nd District State Senator Fred Akshar had an intimate relationship with the mother of a murder victim. It’s a case Akshar supervised while with the Broome County Sheriff’s office. This week, the story hasn’t gone away. It’s become part of the Broome County District Attorney race.


New Head Appointed For Broome County’s Public Nursing Home

Consultants have recommended closing Willow Point Nursing Home in Vestal, New York, but now it’s close to having another permanent director. Broome County Executive Jason Garner appointed Ryan LaClair on Tuesday. LaClair was most recently at the Country Manor Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Carthage. In his time at that facility, he improved the quality to a five-star rating based on the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services Quality Measures. Willow Point has been without a permanent leader for four months now. The county-run nursing home had a budget in the red for years.


What Happens When Social Workers Go On Police Calls? The Southern Tier Is Trying It Out

  Sarah Harding has a police radio and a bullet proof vest. She checks in with 911 dispatch as she starts her day.  But she’s not a police officer. Harding is a clinical social worker with the Mental Health Association of the Southern Tier. Meeting People In A Crisis Harding goes on police calls when a person might be having a mental health crisis. Sometimes, people are a bit wary of speaking with her. “They see you coming and [they say] ‘who’s that? what’s that for?'” she said.


The Head Of Broome’s Public Nursing Home Resigns

Kevin Carey is resigning from his position as administrator for Willow Point Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, a public service that’s become a source of tension in Broome County. When Carey came to lead Willow Point in 2014, the nursing home was projected to be a few million dollars in the red. Consultants have recommended selling or closing Willow Point. But, Carey has said, no matter what the county decided, he’d run the place efficiently. “Kevin has worked hard to help Willow Point through some difficult years,” said Broome County Executive Jason Garnar in a statement.

State Of Emergency In Broome County

BINGHAMTON  (AP) — More than 40,000 utility customers are without power after powerful thunderstorms packing high winds rolled across upstate New York. NYSEG reports half of its 34,000 outages Tuesday morning are located in the Binghamton area, where Broome County officials have declared a state of emergency after trees and utility poles were toppled by high winds during Monday night’s storms. Some 40 roads in the area are closed because of fallen trees or poles. A few thousand other homes and businesses in the Southern Tier and eastern New York remain without power. The National Weather Service says it will investigate whether a tornado touched down in neighboring Chenango and Otsego counties Monday evening. More than 6,700 utility customers in Chenango County are waiting to have power restored.


Preston Pleads Guilty To Misusing A Credit Card

At the Binghamton City Court Monday morning, former Broome County Executive Debbie Preston pleaded guilty to charges of “official misconduct.” Preston was accused of getting credit card in her name and in the Town of Conklin’s name back when she was town supervisor. Then, she bought stuff for herself and continued to do so even after she was told not to, racking up a balance of over $20,000. She could’ve gotten jail time. Instead, she paid a $1,000 fine. The prosecutor, Joseph Fazzary, district attorney in Schuyler County, said he couldn’t find evidence she’d tried to steal anything or falsify documents.


Former Broome County Executive Arrested For “Official Misconduct”

At about 8:15 Monday morning, former Broome County Executive Debbie Preston turned herself in to the New York State police barracks in Kirkwood, NY. She’s charged with misusing a credit card back when she was supervisor for the Town of Conklin. Preston served as supervisor from 2003 to 2011. She became county executive in 2012 and lost a bid for re-election last November. She’s accused of getting a credit card in the town’s name and her name and buying things for herself.

The Photography of Joseph K. Noyes | Chords of Memory

In this episode of Chords of Memory we highlight the photography of Joseph K. Noyes, an amateur photographer from Binghamton, New York. Robert Perez provides the musical arrangement, playing his song “My Life”. Photographs courtesy of the Broome County Historical Society.

Chords of Memory is a web series from WSKG that combines historic photographs with local musical talent. In each episode, a local artist provides the musical backdrop to a showcase of hand-selected images from various photographic archives.

Binghamton Noir | Chords of Memory

The photographs in this episode of Chords of Memory were taken in Binghamton, New York between 1937 and 1947. Phil Westcott provides the musical arrangement on his saxophone. Photographs courtesy of the Broome County Historical Society.

Chords of Memory is a web series from WSKG that combines historic photographs with local musical talent. In each episode, a local artist provides the musical backdrop to a showcase of hand-selected images from various photographic archives.


Nicknamed the Magic City, the Village of Endicott started as a planned village by the Endicott Land Company in 1900. Within 6 years, the new community was incorporated and included major factories built and operated by the Endicott Johnson Shoe Company.

Funding provided by a grant from Empire State Development.

Johnson City

In 1890, the Lester Brothers Boot and Shoe Company purchased farmland in the Town of Union to build the Pioneer Factory in their planned community of Lestershire. In 1892, while the company faced financial ruin, Lestershire became a village. The company was sold to Henry B. Endicott of Massachusetts, who kept on foreman George F. Johnson – making him a partner in renamed Endicott Johnson Shoe Company. In 1916, Lestershire was renamed Johnson City in honor of George F. Johnson.

Funding provided by a grant from Empire State Development. Links:
Path Through History:
WSKG’s Path Through History:


Tom Libous Dies

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) – A longtime New York state senator who helped lead its Republican majority before his conviction last year for lying to the FBI has died. Tom Libous, who was 63, died Tuesday after a prolonged battle with cancer. His death was announced in a statement from his family. Libous lost his seat as the Senate’s deputy majority leader after being convicted in July. Prosecutors say he lied to agents asking how his son Matthew got a $150,000-a-year law firm job.


Cornwell Secures Broome County DA Post

Republican Stephen Cornwell will soon be Broome County’s new District Attorney. He emerged victorious in the tight race after absentee ballots were counted on Tuesday. The DA contest ended too close to call on November 3, with Democratic incumbent Gerald Mollen trailing Cornwell by fewer than 600 votes. With absentee ballots in, unofficial totals are 20,121 for Mollen and 20,630 for Cornwell. That count does not include about 15 votes that are to be hand-counted.


Harpursville Parent Lawsuit Fails At Court

A Broome County judge has dismissed a lawsuit Harpursville parents brought against their school. The parents sued their district for violation of open meetings laws and financial irresponsibility earlier this summer. The judge told parents to take their case to the ballot box. He said court isn’t the right forum for their complaints, and he also more or less rejected every one of the claims. On violation of open meetings, he said communities don’t have the right to debate all board decisions. They can observe, not necessarily discuss.


Parents Sue So. Tier School For More Say, Lower Taxes

Parents in Harpursville, New York, are taking their school district to court. A group sued the school earlier this year over what they say is a lack of transparency. The case went before a Broome County judge Tuesday. The group is called STOP, or School Transparency Organization for Parents. They say their school used a secretive process to get rid of two administrators last year and hire replacements.


NY Cities Struggle Against Child Poverty

Child poverty rates in four upstate New York cities are more than double state averages. The issue spurred an anti-poverty campaign in Rochester earlier this year, and now Binghamton is getting on board, too. Johnson City School District Superintendent Mary Kay Frys spoke at a public meeting two state legislators held in Binghamton this week. She says there’s a poverty crisis in the district. “We have had elementary students dumpster dive in restaurant receptacles in the village in order to get food that has been thrown out,” she says.


Dropping Down A Wall … For A Good Cause

Binghamton’s DoubleTree hotel turned into a rappelling wall today in a first-of-its-kind fundraiser for Catholic Charities of Broome County. Lisa Beach of Binghamton’s Indulgence salon was one of 30 people who each raised $1,000 for the chance to rappel. The crowd craned their heads back to watch as she stepped off the ten-story hotel. Her son Dominick cheered his mom on as she neared the ground without holding on to the ropes. “She was fearless, with her arms out like this,” he gestured, throwing his arms wide.

Broome Repairs Flood-Prone Facility That Stores Voting Machines

Listening… /

The warehouse where Broome County stores its electronic voting machines has experienced several flooding incidents within the last two years. County Executive Debbie Preston announced plans to move the voting machines from sites in Vestal to the former Ramp Industries building on Floral Avenue in Binghamton in 2012. The decision was presented as a cost-saving measure. The minority leader of the Broome County legislature, Jason Garnar, says he found out about flooding that has occurred at the site since then from county workers.