Karen DeWitt

Capitol Bureau Chief, New York State Public Radio

Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio.

Karen DeWitt reports for a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990. 

She is also a regular contributor to the statewide public television program about New York State government, New York NOW. She appears on the reporter's roundtable segment, and interviews newsmakers. 

Karen previously worked for WINS Radio, and has written for numerous publications, including Adirondack Life and the Albany newsweekly Metroland

She is a past recipient of the prestigious Walter T. Brown Memorial award for excellence in journalism, from the Legislative Correspondents Association, and was named Media Person of the Year for 2009 by the Women's Press Club of New York State.

Karen is a graduate of the State University of New York at Geneseo.

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Tensions between upstate Senators and the Mayor of New York City were highlighted during a budget hearing on aid to local governments in Albany, when lawmakers questioned the mayor for over five hours.


  A budget watch dog group is giving Governor Cuomo a mixed grade on his budget proposals, saying he’s done a good job reigning in spending, but is making a mistake by shifting some significant costs to New York City.

The Citizens Budget Commission analyzed Governor Cuomo’s budget plan, and gives him high marks for controlling spending, says the group’s Tammy Gamerman.

Three of seven regions in competition in upstate New York were awarded $500 million each in economic development money on Thursday, in a contest by Governor Cuomo that critics have called the “Hunger Games."

The annual awards ceremony took on a game show atmosphere, with lots of slick videos and an enthusiastic announcer.

Hydrofracking has been banned in New York State for nearly a year now,  but opponents of the natural gas extraction process have other concerns, including new pipelines.

Weather.gov

Governor Cuomo says he’s already making  preparations, in case Hurricane Joaquin hits New York full force in the coming days.

Cuomo says he’s staffing up emergency operations centers, notifying national guard offices that they might have to be deployed,  and having work crews clear any trouble spots known to be prone to flooding, even though the track of the storm is still somewhat uncertain.

“I have learned the hard way that it is better to prepare for the worst,” said Cuomo , who has as governor  faced three major hurricane type storms, Sandy Irene and Lee as well as a seven foot snowfall in Western New York.

“In the past we did not take the worst case scenario into consideration and we paid the price,” Cuomo said.

Cuomo says the state is much better prepared with new seawalls, 4 miles of barriers , submarine doors at some tunnels and hundreds of new generators, including generator powered  pumping stations. But the governor cautions that “you never know” how a storm will play out, and concedes “you cannot be ready for everything”. 

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