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  • 5 for CNY - Learn How
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City Scuffle News

The Onondaga County Legislature will Start 2023 by Discussing the Future of Jamesville Correctional Facility.

Under a plan recently announced by Onondaga County Executive Ryan McMahon and Onondaga County Sheriff Eugene Conway, the facility in Jamesville would be closed and all inmates and staff would be moved to the Onondaga County Justice Center in Downtown Syracuse. “We are going to examine all aspects of the proposed closure” says Legislature Chairman James Rowley. “By going through the committee process, Legislators will be able to get all the information they need and have their questions answered, so they will be able to make the best decision possible.” The proposal to close Jamesville Correctional Facility comes at a time when the inmate population is around 50 despite being able to handle more than 500 at one time. At the same time, Onondaga County is facing a potential hefty lawsuit for failing to comply with the Hurrell-Harring Agreement, since staff shortages have made it impossible in many cases to get inmates from Jamesville to scheduled court appearances around the county. “The best thing about this plan is that all current Jamesville employees will be offered similar jobs at the Onondaga County Justice Center” adds Chairman Rowley. “Since the two facilities are operated under different unions, we want to make sure all employees doing the same work are paid equally. That means most employees in Jamesville’s union will be getting a nearly $10,000 raise.” Discussions surrounding the closure of Jamesville Correctional Facility have been underway for years, as it has been facing dwindling incarceration numbers and problems with staffing. The proposed lawsuit is what brought it to the forefront of the Legislature’s agenda. Chairman Rowley adds, “The employees moving downtown will be getting pay increases, staffing issues should be mostly resolved, and the closure of Jamesville Correctional Facility would save county taxpayers more than $5,000,000 a year. But, some concerns have been raised in the community, and so we want to take the necessary time to review whether closure is the best option and the committee process will allow us to do that.” Committee meetings are scheduled throughout January and can be live-streamed at Facebook.com/OnondagaCountyLegislature.

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Neighborhoods News

Trailer Fire on Elevated Section of Interstate 81

Syracuse, N.Y. – On December 12th, 2022 at 7:59 a.m., Syracuse firefighters were alerted by the 911 Center to a possible tractor-trailer on fire on I-81 over E. Adams Street. Firefighters from Engine 8 (S. Salina St.) arrived to NB I-81 to find a 53-foot trailer of a tractor-trailer engulfed in fire from stem to stern. Engine 8 firefighters began fire attack with the 500 gallons of tank water that each engine carries. They immediately determined this would not be sufficient water and requested another company to assist them with getting more water from street-level hydrant up to them. Firefighters on street level set up aerial-mounted master streams to extinguish some of fire and also as a water-supply—firefighters on the highway connected their handlines to the aerial. This incident occurred during rush-hour, both on the highway and street level. Syracuse Fire and Police worked with the DPW and DOT to ensure that essential vehicles, such as ambulances, were able to continue moving through the intersection to get to the area hospitals. Firefighters remained on the highway for almost 2 hours ensuring the contents of the trailer were fully extinguished. As of this afternoon, the trailer is still on the highway and the highway is expected to be closed for a short time longer. The fire was determined to have originated under the wheel well of the tractor and cause by an undetermined mechanical issue. There are no injuries to report. “We thank our partners at the 911 Center, Syracuse Police, DOT and DPW” Syracuse Fire Department .  

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Health News

Tai Chi for Arthritis & Falls Prevention – Participants Meet Twice a Week for 8 Weeks for a One Hour Session

Online Zoom Classes – the link will be emailed to all registered participants. Dates of the Week and Time – Mondays and Thursdays from 10:00 -11:00 am Begins Monday, January 23, 2023 and continues until Thursday March 16, 2023. Tai Chi is the ancient practice that combines slow moving with deep breathing. Benefits of Tai Chi for Arthritis: Increase strength, balance and posture Prevent falls Improve mind, body and spirit Reduce stress and increase relaxation This program targets people living with arthritis. Medical studies have shown that Tai Chi relieves pain and improves the quality of life for people living with arthritis, though participants do not need to have arthritis to participate. Download flyer “click” Tai Chi January 2023 Registration Required: CLICK HERE for online registration link or Email livinghealthy@upstate.edu Please help us spread the word! *Voluntary contributions to the Office for Aging are accepted and used to expand services. No one will be denied services if unable or unwilling to contribute. A contribution in any amount is welcomed. Voluntary Contribution payable to Chief Fiscal Officer and mailed to the Office for Aging, 10th Floor, 421 Montgomery Street, Syracuse, NY.

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News

Governor Hochul Announces Launch of New Hate and Bias Prevention Unit within The State Division of Human Rights

New Unit Will Implement a Statewide Campaign Promoting Acceptance, Inclusion, Tolerance and Understanding of Diversity as Required by Legislation Signed Last Month by Governor Hochul Governor Kathy Hochul today announced that the New York State Division of Human Rights is launching a statewide Hate and Bias Prevention Unit, which is charged with leading public education and outreach efforts, serving as an early warning detection system in local communities, and quickly mobilizing to support areas and communities in which a bias incident has occurred. The Hate and Bias Prevention Unit is launching today. “New York State will use every tool at its disposal to eliminate hate and bias from our communities,” Governor Hochul said. “We will not let the rise in hate incidents that we see happening online, across the country and across the world, take root here at home.” “We cannot allow ignorance, fear, and hatred to damage the enormous amount of work we’ve done to move our state forward,” said Lieutenant Governor Antonio Delgado. “The partnerships that we’re building within communities and across the state will ensure what we know to be true which is that love always prevails over hate.” Division of Human Rights Commissioner Maria L. Imperial said, “Everyone – no matter what color they are, or who they love, or what they believe – should feel safe when they go to work, or go dancing, or visit a house of worship, or send their kids off to school.  This new unit will advance our mission of equal opportunity, access, and dignity for all in our state.” As part of this new Unit’s mandate, the Division is organizing 10 regional councils across the state made up of local stakeholders. These councils will provide a place for community members to share concerns, organize educational programming, host hate crime prevention and community healing events, conduct trainings in conflict resolution, and facilitate the filing of complaints with the Division and other relevant agencies. The Unit also will develop a rapid response team to assist communities affected by a bias or hate incident. The Hate and Bias Prevention Unit also will be responsible for establishing and implementing a statewide campaign promoting acceptance, inclusion, tolerance, and understanding of diversity, as required by legislation signed last month by Governor Hochul. The campaign will coordinate and cooperate with public and private organizations, including, but not limited to, local governments, community groups, school districts, places of worship, charitable organizations, and foundations and will develop educational materials to be published on the internet, social media, and other platforms to reach the public. The Division also works with the New York State Police to educate New Yorkers on the State’s hate crimes laws. Today’s announcement builds upon Governor Hochul’s long-standing commitment to combatting hate and violence across the state. The Governor announced $96 million in state and federal funding to safeguard nonprofit, community-based organizations at risk of hate crimes and attacks; $10 million in state funding through the Securing Reproductive Health Centers Program to improve safety and security of patients and employees at reproductive health care centers and abortion services providers that may be at risk of crimes or attacks because of their mission, services, ideology or beliefs; and established within the state Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services a Domestic Terrorism Prevention Unit and directed $10 million in state grant funds to support county governments as they develop domestic terrorism prevention plans and threat assessment and management teams in the wake of the horrific white supremist attack on the Tops Market in Buffalo. The Division annually investigates more than 5,000 complaints of discrimination from individuals across the state. The agency also has the authority to initiate investigations and file complaints alleging violations of the state anti-discrimination law and last year, the Division secured more than $6.2 million in monetary damages for individuals who have experienced discrimination. The Division also works with the New York State Police to educate New Yorkers on the State’s hate crimes laws. New York has the proud distinction of being the first state in the nation to enact a Human Rights Law, affording every citizen “an equal opportunity to enjoy a full and productive life.” The New York State Division of Human Rights is dedicated to eliminating discrimination, remedying injustice, and promoting equal opportunity, access, and dignity through enforcement of the Human Rights Law. Individuals interested in finding out more information or filing a complaint, visit the DHR website.

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Business News Near Eastside (east) Neighborhoods Syracuse - East

Syracuse Land Bank Properties: 221 E. Colvin St. & 316 Pine St.

The primary purpose of the Greater Syracuse Land Bank is to return vacant, abandoned, underutilized, and tax-delinquent properties to productive use in ways that support the community’s long-range vision for its future. “We do this by acquiring these properties, stabilizing them, selling them to responsible buyers for redevelopment, and by assembling and land banking projects for long-range redevelopment plans.  Responsible, well-planned redevelopment of these properties will increase surrounding property values, improve quality of life for surrounding residents, and stabilize the tax base making it easier for local governments to provide essential services. Ensuring that properties are redeveloped by qualified developers, with adequate plans, and for purposes that benefit the surrounding community will work to reverse the decline of property values in blighted areas.” The following properties are just two out of many available. There are a variety of programs designed to assist in the process of acquiring one of these properties. Contact the Syracuse Land Bank for additional information.     221 Colvin St. E Syracuse, NY 13205 Asking Price: $20,000 Southside two-family home with two bedrooms in each unit is for sale.  Estimated renovation cost is approximately $59K.  Contact our office at 315.422.2301 ext. 0 for more information.       316 Pine St. Syracuse, NY 13210 Asking Price: $75,000 Near Eastside two-bedroom fixer-upper home is for sale.  Home does not have to be owner-occupied.  Estimated renovation cost is approximately $28k. Contact our office at 315.422.2301 ext. 0 to learn more about our buying process.  

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Neighborhoods

Mayor Walsh honors Three of Our Community Members with “Extra Mile” Awards

On December 9th in Common Council Chambers, Mayor Walsh honored three of our community members with “Extra Mile” awards: ITC High School senior Isaiah Goodrich, STEAM @ Dr. King Elementary Social Worker Antoinette Singleton and City of Syracuse Personnel Officer Wendy Murphy for their contributions to their families, organizations, and the community. The City of Syracuse joined 523 other cities across America who recognized those people in our community who are “going the extra mile” in volunteerism and service to improve the world as part of Extra Mile America.

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News

Attorney General James Announces Arrests in New York City Deed Theft Ring

The above three individuals impersonated homeowners and have yet to be found. Images have been taken from falsified identification cards. Five Individuals Stole Homes Owned by Elderly and Vulnerable Residents in Southeast Queens New York – New York Attorney General Letitia James today announced the indictment of five members of a deed theft ring for allegedly stealing three homes worth more than $1 million in total from elderly, vulnerable homeowners in the Queens neighborhoods of Jamaica and St. Albans. The defendants impersonated the real homeowners of these properties by using forged drivers’ licenses and social security cards. They then used that forged information at contract signings and closings on the properties and forged the real owners’ signatures on deeds and real estate contracts. “No one should face the nightmare of having their home stolen from them without any warning, knowledge, or reason,” said Attorney General James. “Deed theft is a merciless crime that targets seniors, and often people of color, who are asset rich but cash poor, and reliant on their homes as a stabilizing force for their families and loved ones. My office will continue our work to combat deed theft until we can ensure no other New Yorker is forced to endure this heartbreaking, life-altering loss.” “I thank Attorney General Letitia James as well as our agency and law enforcement partners for their diligent efforts on behalf of New Yorkers,” said Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz. “Deed fraud is an increasingly pervasive crime that robs homeowners of their single most valuable asset. Though it is a growing challenge throughout Queens County, those who choose to victimize others for their own financial gain will be held to account in this borough.” “Deed Fraud continues to be a priority of our office that victimizes the most vulnerable homeowners of New York City,” according toNew York City Sheriff Anthony Miranda. “Perpetrators prey upon the elderly, the financially disadvantaged, and the medically infirmed through deception and a variety of nefarious schemes. The Sheriff’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation will continue to coordinate our effort to protect homeowners and investigate these horrific thefts along with all of our law enforcement partners in the city. We commend the actions of the New York Attorney General’s Office Real Estate Enforcement Unit for their investigation which resulted in today’s arrests and thank them for their continued efforts in this area.” The five individuals indicted are: Marcus Wilcher, 47 Stacie Saunders, 51 Anyekache Hercules, 47 Jerry Currin, 66 Dean Lloyd, 61 Beginning in September 2019, Wilcher located homes in Jamaica and St. Albans, Queens in poor or run-down condition with absentee owners. Saunders then marketed the homes to investors at prices significantly below market rate for quick sales. After an investor expressed interest in purchasing a home, Wilcher would secure personal information about the real owners, including social security numbers and birth dates, to create falsified drivers’ licenses, social security cards, and bank cards. Wilcher and Saunders then found people to impersonate the true owners of the properties at contract signings and closings. Hercules created certain forged legal documents used in the theft of the homes. As she was disbarred and could not practice law in New York, Hercules fraudulently used a practicing attorney’s email and name on legal correspondence. Lloyd or one of three other individuals that have yet to be apprehended would appear at the closings with forged deeds and contracts. Currin appeared at the closing on his family home with an individual who pretended to be his sister, the executor of the family estate. This person has not yet been apprehended. Currin also submitted a false affidavit in support of a second estate sale for a different stolen property, written as a long-time family friend. After the sales were finalized, the defendants opened bank accounts in the names of the homes’ real owners using the impostor sellers’ forged drivers’ licenses and social security cards. He and his co-conspirators then used these bank accounts and other entities and LLCs they controlled to funnel more than $1 million in proceeds to themselves. The stolen properties are: 161-14 121 Avenue, Queens, New York 112-39 176 Street, Queens, New York 168-11 119 Avenue, Queens, New York Saunders, Hercules, and Currin were arraigned yesterday before Supreme Court Judge Evelyn Braun in Queens County. The defendants, as detailed in the indictment, have been charged with the following crimes: Money Laundering in the Second Degree, a class C felony; Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class C felony; Attempted Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class D felony; Conspiracy in the Fourth Degree, a class E felony; Scheme to Defraud in the First Degree, a class E felony; Practice of Law by an Attorney Who Has Been Disbarred, Suspended or Convicted of a Felony, a class E felony; Offering a False Instrument for Filing in the First Degree, a class E felony; Forgery in the Second Degree, a class E felony; Criminal Possession of a Forged Instrument in the Second Degree, a class E felony; and Criminal Impersonation in the Second Degree, a class A misdemeanor. The maximum sentence on the top count is 15 years. The charges are merely accusations, and the defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law. While three members of the deed theft ring have been arraigned, another five remain at large: Wilcher, Lloyd, and three individuals that have yet to be identified. The Office of the Attorney General (OAG) is now seeking the public’s help in bringing them to justice. The OAG encourages anyone familiar with one or more of the co-conspirators at-large to contact OAG’s Public Integrity Bureau confidentially by calling (212) 416-8090 or emailing public.integrity@ag.ny.gov. The OAG thanks the New York Department of State for the criminal referral and its assistance with this investigation and prosecution. The OAG also thanks the New York City Department of Finance for its help. The OAG also thanks the Yeadon Pennsylvania Police Department, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Office of

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Neighborhoods News

Joint Economic Development, Downtown & Metropolitan Planning & Neighborhood Preservation (Homeless & Housing Vulnerable) Committee Meeting – Wednesday, December 14, 2022, at 10:00 a.m.

Councilor Patrick J. Hogan Chairperson – Economic Development, Downtown & Metropolitan Planning Committee and Councilor LaToya Allen Chair – Neighborhood Preservation Committee (Homeless and Housing Vulnerable) There will be a joint meeting of the Economic Development, Downtown & Metropolitan Planning & Neighborhood Preservation (Homeless & Housing Vulnerable) Committee on Wednesday,  December 14, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. in the Common Council Chambers, third floor, City Hall. The purpose of this meeting is to discuss accepting the list of developers who responded to the City’s Request for Qualifications (RFQ #23-007), and to authorize the City to enter into contract with approved developers on a per project basis, as approved by ordinance #22-295.    

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Neighborhoods

Syracuse Common Council Weekly Schedule December 12 -December 16, 2022

Meetings Scheduled in The Common Council Chambers December 12th, up to and including December 16th, 2022. Common Council meetings will be held in the Common Council Chambers, third floor of City Hall. Monday, December 12th 6:00 p.m. City Planning Commission Meeting Tuesday, December 13th 8:00 a.m. Syracuse Industrial Development Agency Meeting Wednesday, December 14th 10:00 a.m. Joint Economic Development, Downtown & Metropolitan Planning & Neighborhood Preservation Committee Meeting re: Accepting the list of developers who responded to the City’s request for Qualifications 12:00 p.m. Study Session 1:30 p.m. Public Works (D.P.W. & Transportation)Committee Meeting re: Winter operations of the Department of Public Works Thursday, December 15th 9:00 a.m. Joint School Construction Board Meeting Friday, December 16th No Meetings Scheduled    

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