Two Killed in Ithaca Car Crash:
Emergency officials say two people were killed and two others were injured after their car went off the road and hit a utility pole yesterday on Route 13 in Ithaca. The victim’s names haven’t been released, but police say only the one vehicle was involved. The section of Route 13 at Cascadilla Street was temporarily closed. Investigators say there is no official cause for the crash yet, but they do know the vehicle’s speed played a factor in the incident.
Corning Projects will Affect City Traffic:
Construction projects soon to be under way are expected to create some traffic inconveniences in Corning. City Director of Planning and Economic Development, Steven Dennis says two city projects, a $7.6 million transportation center off Denison Parkway and a $5.7 million rehabilitation of the old Centerway footbridge, are expected to begin early this summer; and according to Corning Police Chief Sal Trentanelli work on the transportation center project will cause some minor traffic delays and reduce the amount of parking spaces. The traffic delays will primarily be when the existing buildings are being razed or when pipe is being installed. He added that the Centerway bridge project will primarily impact foot traffic. Also to take into account during your drive is the Corning-Painted Post School District’s $97.4 million facilities project, which is expected to begin shortly. Trentanelli says of it, “The project will have an impact on traffic flow, especially when kids are going to school or at school closing time.”
New York to Raise Minimum Wage?
The New York State Legislature could make a decision to raise the minimum wage later this month, and officials have proposed raising it from $7.25 to $8.50. Their proposal also includes an annual increase to minimum wage to meet rising inflation. Kevin Keeley, president of the Chemung County Chamber of Commerce, says raising the minimum wage will be great for some workers, but a potential disaster for others. “In a small business payroll, it’s going to necessitate them to make a change that could mean fewer hours or fewer employees. So some could benefit, but someone is going to be the casualty,” he said. Assemblyman Phil Palmesano said, “It would increase the cost of business, and not just pay roll cost. It would increase insurance costs and unemployment costs.” According to a recent University poll, 78% of voters do support raising the minimum wage, with 52% of voters supporting an increase to more than $8.50 an hour.
Ford Focus Recall:
Ford has announced that it’s recalling more than 140,000 of their focus compact cars because the passenger side windshield wiper can fail. Federal safety regulators say a seal in the wiper motor may be missing which could allow water to get inside and cause the wiper to stop working, increasing the risk of a crash. The focus compacts under recall were built from August 2010 through mid-October of last year. Ford dealers will fix the problem for free. Repairs are expected to begin in late May.
Teacher Evaluations Could Go Public:
The results from the teacher evaluations each New York school district must implement by January could go public – which means you would be able to see the performance, or lack there of, of the person teaching your children. Local law makers say there’s no proposed bill in legislature to vote on yet… but it’s expected to be a major topic of discussion in the next legislative session, which starts later this month. Assemblyman Phil Palmesano says this could be beneficial to parents, but that he doesn’t know yet how much information in the evaluations will be made public or who specifically would be able to access it.
NYSEG Offers Safety Tips:
New York State Electric and Gas wants to remind contractors and others who are planning outdoor projects to be mindful of overhead power lines and underground utilities. Mark Lynch, President of NYSEG, says, “Ladders, gutters, and aluminum siding can all conduct electricity. Making contact with a power line with any of these items could be deadly. Digging into underground utilities could also have very serious consequences.” NYSEG advises to carefully check work areas for potential hazards and to call 1 – 800 – 962 – 7962 or to visit http://www.digsafelynewyork.com before beginning any excavation work.