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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9:09am

Fri November 14, 2014
NPR Story

Green Party candidate says he will not go away

Originally published on Fri November 14, 2014 8:50 am

Howie Hawkins, with the Green Party, performed well in the 2014 governor's race. (file photo)
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Green Party candidate for governor Howie Hawkins says he’s not going away now that elections are over. He says he intends to continue drawing attention to issues like raising the minimum wage and building his party, instead.

Hawkins says the Greens, who were the only party to gain voters in the elections, intends to build their membership in the coming months. Hawkins says 70 percent of voters did not bother coming to the polls, and he sees potential in the disaffected electorate.

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3:38pm

Thu November 13, 2014
Politics

Schools say New York surplus should fund additional aid

Bob Lowry, with the New York State School Council of superintendents, says schools are falling behind.

The board is made up of the state’s teachers, school boards, superintendents and the PTA, among others. They agree that school spending must increase significantly in the New Year. Chairman John Yagielski says the groups want $1.9 billion additional dollars for the 2015-16 school year.

They say even though the recession has eased and the state has a substantial surplus, schools are still getting less money than what they got before the 2008 stock market crash .

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9:31am

Thu November 13, 2014
Politics

Watchdog groups urge prudence with state's $5.1 billion surplus

Originally published on Thu November 13, 2014 9:55 am

Gov. Andrew Cuomo meets with residents on Staten Island while on a tour highlighting the Superstorm Sandy recovery effort. (file photo)
governorandrewcuomo Flickr

New York state will begin 2015 with the largest one-time windfall budget surplus since the end of World War II, due to settlements with major banks after the financial crisis. Fiscal watchdog groups are warning lawmakers not to go crazy with ideas for how to spend it.

The settlements from Bank of America, PricewaterhouseCoopers and other financial institutions have netted the state $5.1 billion in settlements over alleged misconduct during the 2008 Wall Street meltdown.

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10:56am

Fri November 7, 2014
Energy

Election over, will Cuomo decide on fracking?

Credit Karen DeWitt/WXXI

Now that elections are over, supporters and opponents of hydro fracking are wondering what will be Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s next move on the long stalled gas drilling process in New York state.

New York has had a de facto moratorium on fracking for several years. Most recently Cuomo has said he’s awaiting results of an over two-year long health review being conducted by his administration.

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9:58am

Fri November 7, 2014
Politics

Supporters say yes vote on Prop 1 conveys appetite for reform

Originally published on Fri November 7, 2014 7:31 am

-JvL- Flickr

All three propositions on the New York state ballot passed Tuesday. Supporters of the measure to change the redistricting process say the vote shows New Yorkers are hungry for reform.

Voters approved a change in the state’s constitution that will require the legislature to appoint a commission to redraw state Senate, Assembly and congressional district lines after the 2020 census.

Dick Dadey, with Citizens Union, a group that supported the amendment, says the 57 percent of voters who said yes shows that the public craves reform of the present system.

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