Judge upholds SAFE Act

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

A judge has ruled that the NY SAFE Act does not violate the Second Amendment. The decision from state Supreme Court Justice Thomas McNamara also rejected claims that the gun law was improperly pushed through the legislature by Governor Cuomo, who issued a "message of necessity" that let lawmakers approve the measure without the usual waiting period for the consideration of bills. The SAFE Act bans the sale of many semi-automatic firearms and is unpopular in many areas of rural New York. The Plaintiff in the case, Robert Schulz stated that he plans to appeal the ruling to the Court of Appeals, which is the state's highest
court. Attorney General Eric Schneiderman stated that the law established necessary safeguards without
infringing on gun rights. Meanwhile, hundreds turned out for an anti-SAFE Act rally in Gouverneur, including Lewis County Sheriff Mike Carpinelli, a long-time opponent of the SAFE Act who stated that overturning the SAFE Act means voting for a new Governor in November.

Independence Party files objection to Stefanik petition

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

The New York state Independence Party has filed an objection to a petition submitted by a candidate for the 21st Congressional District. Party officials report that Elise Stefanik's petition to get on the Independence primary ballot against Matt Doheny only included 137 signatures. Based on party enrollment, state law requires 1,222 signatures. A ruling on the objections is expected this week. Stefanik's campaign did not comment on the matter.

Hanna calls for safeguards for taxpayers

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

With the income tax filing deadline now behind us, Congressman Richard Hanna has called on the IRS to make protecting taxpayers' private information and cracking down on tax fraud a top priority. Hanna said the government has a responsibility to protect hard-working upstate New Yorkers from identity theft, and the IRS needs to do better. Each year, millions of Americans fall victim to identity thieves on Tax Day.

Walk/Run for Wellness to be held in May

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

The Lewis County Hospital Foundation's Walk/Run for Wellness will be held on May 17th & will include a 5k walk/run, a 10k run and a half-mile fun run. The event is in conjunction with Lewis County General Hospital's Community Health Awareness Day and is co-sponsored by Lewis County Public Health. Registration check-in begins at 8:00 am at the farmer's market booth in parking lot four on the Hospital campus. The 5k and 10k start at 9 a.m. with the fun run beginning at 10 am. The donation for the 5K and 10K is $25.00 and $5.00 for the fun run. T-shirts are only guaranteed to 5K and 10K participants who register by May 1st. All participants registered for the 5K or 10k will be entered into a drawing for a Nike Fuel Band. All fun runners will receive a medal for their participation. For registration information please visit the Foundation's Facebook page or contact the Hospital Foundation office at 376-5110.

Owens refunding campaign contributions

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

Congressman Bill Owens is refunding campaign contributions due to his not running for re-election. The federal Election Commission's campaign finance report for the first quarter of the year states that Owens has refunded over $122,000 that people contributed to his campaigns. Owens also transferred $1,000 from his
campaign fund to 5 congressmen running for reelection this year.

Disaster assistance programs re-established

on Monday, 21 April 2014.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency announced that farmers can sign-up for disaster assistance programs, reestablished and strengthened by the 2014 Farm Bill. The Livestock Indemnity Program will provide payments to eligible producers for livestock deaths that have occurred since the expiration of the livestock disaster assistance programs in 2011, and including calendar years 2012, 2013, and 2014. Enrollment also begins for producers with losses covered by the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program and the Tree Assistance Program in 2011, when the programs expired, through 2014. Information on the types of records necessary can be provided by local FSA offices. Producers also are encouraged to contact their county office ahead of time to schedule an appointment.

Local News for 4/19/14

on Saturday, 19 April 2014.

Schumer tours flood damage

on Saturday, 19 April 2014.

U.S. Senator Charles Schumer visited Lewis County yesterday to get a first-hand look at the flood damage. The Senator toured a farm in Castorland & urged the USDA to issue a secretarial disaster declaration for Lewis and St. Lawrence counties due to the severe flooding, which has caused a widespread displacement of cattle and loss of feed and milk. The disaster declaration would make emergency low-interest loans from the USDA immediately available to impacted farmers in Lewis and St. Lawrence Counties, as well as any county that borders either of them. Some of the farmers in the flood areas transported their animals to the Lewis County Fairgrounds, where they were kept in the livestock barns. Now that the flood waters are receding, Lewis County officials say that the next step is dealing with contamination and debris. Lewis County Public Health is offering tetanus shots for anyone who has come into contact with flood waters and warning about well contamination. County officials also state that they have to wait until the water fully recedes until they can decide what equipment is needed to clean up the debris, adding that the state is in contact with the county EMS office and they are ready to ask for assistance.

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