Catch Up On Recent Southern Tier New York Local News
Every Monday, I recap some of the essential local news we reported on 1290 AM/92.1 FM WNBF, our Townsquare Media Binghamton sister radio stations on-air, on our websites, and social media platforms.
Catch up here on local, regional, or state news items in a short recap we reported on for the week of December 11, 2023, from various agencies and news reporting from WNBF's Bob Joseph, Don Morgan, and the Townsquare Media staff. For the complete article (if available), click on the headline.
The operators of several Binghamton businesses want the city to do more to address criminal activity, including shootings, assaults, and vandalism. Some downtown business owners have expressed growing frustration in recent weeks about incidents that have made employees and customers fearful for their safety. In one case, a bullet damaged the window of a parked vehicle. In another recent incident, a large window at De Island Hut, a Washington Street restaurant, was shattered.
December 11th, the problem property, 35 Baxter Street, Binghamton in the First Ward was locked down according to the office of Mayor Jared M. Kraham. Multiple persons have been arrested from the residence this year stemming from charges of weapons and narcotics. The lockdown order was signed and went into effect as of December 1 by Judge Daniel Seiden, for a total of 12 months. The order states the City and the owners of the property agreed that 35 Baxter Street is a public nuisance hurting the immediate neighborhood and upon the City of Binghamton in general as defined by the City’s Property and Building Nuisance Reform Law.”
Three people who were part of a crew putting on a holiday fireworks display at Highland Park in Endwell reportedly were threatened by a man with a knife. Authorities said the incident at the town of Union Park off Hooper Road was reported around 5:20 p.m. Sunday. According to New York State Police, troopers were sent to the park after a 911 call was received. 34-year-old Joshua Bean of Endwell was arrested in connection with the incident. He was charged with three counts of third-degree menacing. Bean allegedly had a pocket knife during the confrontation.
A new state-of-the-art training center has been unveiled in the Village of Endicott. The training center was funded by a $350,000 New York State Assembly grant to help purchase a fully immersive 360-degree virtual reality platform to train officers for difficult real-world situations. Previously, the range was only rated for handguns. Now, the facility is one of just a few indoor police training facilities in Upstate New York where rifles can be used.
Environmentalists in upstate New York are calling for a ban on natural gas extraction operations with a technique that would use carbon dioxide. An out-of-state entity recently sent information to thousands of Broome, Tioga, and Chemung county landowners about the possibility of gas extraction in the region. Southern Tier CO2 to Clean Energy Solutions wants to lease at least 100,000 acres of land in the Marcellus Shale region. The company may move forward with drilling pilot wells by next spring. Walter Hang of the Ithaca-based Toxics Targeting said a statewide campaign is being launched to urge Governor Kathy Hochul to take action to block what the company hopes to do.
Tuesday, December 12th, 2023, New York State Governor Kathy Hochul announced $479 million in grants for critical water infrastructure projects which included the first funding awarded through the $4.2 billion Clean Water, Clean Air, and Green Jobs Environmental Bond Act of 2022. This act was passed by New York State voters after Governor Hochul pushed to increase the total amount by $1 billion immediately upon taking office. According to the New York State Environmental Facilities Corporation and the Village of Endicott, a NYS Water Infrastructure Improvement Act (WIIA) Grant for over $200,000 has been awarded to the Village of Endicott.
Binghamton police are working to find the suspect in connection with a shooting that occurred at an East Side home. Police officers were sent to the single-family residence at 9 Andrews Avenue around 10:35 a.m. Thursday. Authorities said a man at the home had sustained a gunshot wound to an arm. The injury did not appear to be life-threatening. Police said the man, whose name was not released, was taken to a hospital for treatment. His condition was not known. Investigators believe the man who was wounded and the shooter know each other.
New York State Governor Kathy Hochul signed legislation into law on Wednesday, December 13th, 2023, prohibiting hospitals, health care professionals, and ambulances from reporting an individual’s medical debt to credit agencies. The New York State Governor's Office notes that according to a from the Urban Institute, 740,000 New Yorkers have medical debt on their credit reports. This legislation makes it easier for people in the State of New York to get jobs, secure credit, rent an apartment, pay for their children’s education, and build long-term wealth.
An intense blaze that erupted where homeless people were staying resulted in the closure of a Binghamton bridge. City firefighters were sent to the VFW Memorial Bridge on Bevier Street around 8:20 p.m. Wednesday when several people reported a fire under the span. Smoke was seen on both sides of the bridge when the first engine company arrived on the scene. Firefighters were able to extinguish the blaze with a single water line. It was not known how many people had been living under the bridge. The encampment was located on the east side of the Chenango River, a short distance from Chenango Street.
According to the description from the CPSC, water beads look a lot like candy and are harmless, but that's far from the case. Water beads can be deadly to babies and small children if ingested, and the CPSC notes that they can lead to choking, internal injuries, and even death if left undetected. Water beads can be found in many places like craft kits and are even often sold as toys. These small beads are made of absorbent polymer and when exposed to water, can grow up to 100 times the original size.
Binghamton officials are working to lay the groundwork for a new cannabis cultivation and manufacturing operation in the city. The concept of developing such a facility remains alive, although a future project may not involve the California company that publicly expressed an interest in Binghamton. Mayor Jared Kraham announced plans for a project in July 2022. He said a firm named STIIIZY was planning to enter into an option to purchase an agreement for a site in the First Ward. The 8.2-acre parcel is between Charles Street and West Street. The land is part of the Charles Street Business Park. The site has been vacant for decades since the abandoned Anitec Image Corporation manufacturing complex was demolished.
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