Morning Read: school budgets, graduates, and casinos

Photo: Sander Spolspoel, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Photo: Sander Spolspoel, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

OK – Nora Flaherty’s on vacation, so I make no promises about matching her lively tone here…but there is new this morning, and somebody’s got to do it.

Brian Mann and I sorted through a lot of school budget proposals, and a lot of the challenges North Country schools face, again, this year. There’s flat, or worse, state aid, shrinking school populations and the state cap on property tax increases. Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin is to sign his state’s end-of-life bill. And Matt Richmond reports  on the fine line undocumented farm workers must walk, living “illegally” in New York State. It isn’t a new story, but immigration reform may have some answers.

The Watertown Daily Times has pictures and all from commencement exercises at St. Lawrence University and SUNY Potsdam. Also a report that counties may get the state’s OK to close their old law libraries in favor of offering inmates electronic access to legal materials. It’ll save money, but inmate advocates  worry.

In the Syracuse Post Standard,  Oneida Nation leader Ray Halbritter reflects on the deal he just made with Gov. Cuomo, to share  a quarter of the revenues from the Oniedas’ big Turning Stone Casino with the state. The deal came after Cuomo announced his push for three new non-Native casinos in upstate New York — it also guarantees no one but the Oneidas will be opening a casino in the 10-county region around Turningstone. (Halbritter says he’d never met Andrew Cuomo before, called him “a reasonable man.” But  he recalled the negotiations with Gov. Mario Cuomo that led to the 1988 compact allowing native casinos in New York, “his sleeves were rolled up and he just impressed me as a very hard-working and very respectful person and very much involved in understanding the issues, understanding what was involved.”

3 Comments on “Morning Read: school budgets, graduates, and casinos”

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  1. The Original Larry says:

    I have long wondered how Newcomb can afford to educate students from around the world at nominal cost, and now I know. A 24% increase in spending, covered primarily by the state of NY and non-resident owners who pay about 5X what residents pay. So, those who don’t use the services pay the lion’s share of the cost. That’s exactly the kind of financial lunacy that has to stop before we are all bankrupted.

  2. Sunday’s Post-Star offered a great example of burying the lede. They called for Sheldon Silver to resign but it was a token sentence at the very end.

  3. For once, I think Larry might have a point. I like the concept of Newcomb but they’re spending a ton of money per pupil to educate a relatively tiny number of locals. I think Newcomb might be better re-fashioned as some sort of regional specialty high school, similar to what they have in NYC. That way they could keep the fairly unique programs but expand their access to beyond 6 or whatever per class. This would also spread out funding too.

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