Video – Interviews

Tax Foundation VP Explains New York State’s Ranking

The Tax Foundation has changed its analysis of New York’s tax climate after the passage of the 2014-15 state budget. In fact, if the changes in the budget had been in place a few months ago, New York would have ranked much higher in the corporate tax category and moved up in the property tax category. Even the overall ranking would improve, from 50th out of 50 to number 48. And despite these changes, the foundation’s new report still says “New York is not a low-tax state.” The author of the new analysis, Tax Foundation Vice President for Legal and State Projects Joseph Henchman, joined us to explain.

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EPA Regional Administrator Explains #NatureSelfie

In 1970, a U.S. Senator from Wisconsin decided to bring environmental protection to the forefront of the national political agenda, thus creating Earth Day.
Next Tuesday, the 22nd, is Earth Day. But locally, organizations are starting the celebrations this week. In Albany, the EPA along with the Nature Conservancy are using social media to encourage participation. Judith Enck, the EPA’s Regional Administrator, joined us to discuss.

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Coalition For More Family Court Judges Discusses Latest Effort

$5 million dollars was included in this year’s state budget for the hiring of 20 more Family Court Judges. members of the New York state Coalition for More Family Court Judges say this would help reduce backlog that has been a serious problem within the system. Stephanie Gendell and Denise Kronstadt, both with the Coalition for More Family Court Judges, joined us to explain.

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The Insiders

Governor Cuomo said from the beginning that the Moreland Commission on Public Corruption would be a temporary commission until the legislature passed ethics reforms. Well, they did that in this year’s budget. But, Cuomo’s decision continues to receive political fallout from both a U.S. attorney and state Republicans. And this comes as the election season approaches. This week’s Insiders, Bob Bellafiore and Steve Greenberg, sat down to discuss this and other top political stories of the week.

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Congressman Higgins Discusses The Ryan Budget, Buffalo Bills Future

Congress members are back in their districts this week after a very close budget vote last week. The spending plan was drawn up by Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan. And Democrats argue that it drastically cuts services. Congressman Brian Higgins joined us to talk about this and other news from Washington.

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NYISO Vice President On Their New Control Center

Monday, the New York Independent System Operator unveiled its $38 million control center in Rensselaer. The control facility will serve as the primary operations center for NYISO to better meet energy demands across the state. Tom Rumsey, Vice President of the New York Independent System Operator, joined us to discuss the new facility and changing energy demands

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State Rifle And Pistol Association President Discusses SAFE Act Deadline

Not only is April 15th the deadline for submitting taxes, but it’s also the deadline for registering assault weapons under the New York SAFE Act. Those who choose not to register their assault rifles can face a misdemeanor charge or even a felony charge. And, as seen by the April 1st rally outside the state capitol, many gun owners say they plan to ignore the deadline. There are other ways to avoid breaking the law, such as making modifications to the firearm to make the military-style features inoperable. Tom King, President of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association, joined us to discuss.

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Senator Robach On Tackling The Issue Of Heroin Use

The state Senate’s new task force on heroin and opioid addication will host two forums Tuesday in Rochester and Utica. The task force was formed just last month. And last week they met on Long Island to begin looking at options for preventing and treating addiction. Senator Joe Robach is hosting the Rochester forum and joined us to talk about the task force’s work.

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Tax Commissioner Explains Tax Fraud Prevention Program, E-Filing

It’s that time of year that seems to sneak up on a lot of people – April 15th is tax deadline day. Monday, the state tax department released the results of its fraudulent refund prevention program, which stopped more than $400 million from being collected in bad refunds in 2013. State Tax Commissioner, Thomas Mattox, joined us to discuss this and other tax-related issues.

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Reporter Roundtable

Every so often, it seems that U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara likes to flex his political and prosecutorial muscle in a way that sends shockwaves through the capitol. Last year, Bharara busted a slew of corrupt politicians. This week, he cricized Governor Cuomo himself for his disbanding of the supposedly corruption-busting Moreland Commission. Our reporter roundtable sat down to discuss this and other top political headlines from the past week.

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