Invasive Box Tree Moth Found in Western New York

08192021_Boxwood Hedge_PA Dept of Ag

(Boxwood plants grown to form a hedge / Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture)

08192021_box tree moth_nys dept of ag

(Box Tree Moth / New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets)

ITHACA, NY -- The Box Tree Moth has been found in parts of Western New York. This invasive pest is a serious threat to boxwood plants, which are important in the U.S. nursery industry.

Boxwood plants are shrubs, and are often grown to make decorative low hedges. Signs of infestation include chewed up leaves, and defoliation. Box tree larvae are green and yellow with, white, yellow and black stripes as well as black spots.

The box tree moth’s presence in New York was confirmed on Wednesday by the State Department of Agriculture.

They’re asking for signs of infestation to be reported. You can do by going to agriculture.ny.gov, and filling out their Box Tree Moth Public Report.

Kendal at Ithaca Reaches 100% Vaccination

By Felix Teitelbaum | October 5, 2021

An Ithaca nursing home has become one of the first in the state to reach 100 percent vaccination of both residents and workers. According to WSYR the Kendal at Ithaca facility is one of just 13 nursing homes to reach the mark in New York State. The facility houses 340 residents over the age of…

Not all healthcare workers in New York State are required to have a Covid-19 vaccination.

By Felix Teitelbaum | October 1, 2021

Not all healthcare workers in New York State  are required to have a Covid-19 vaccination.  Governor Cuomo’s August  mandate requiring vaccinations by September 27th only covers agencies regulated by the state Department of Health or the state university system.  Governor Hochul announced on Thursday that she “did not have the authority” to mandate employee vaccinations…

Tompkins Health Department Releases Guidance for COVID Booster Shots

By Felix Teitelbaum | September 29, 2021

Tompkins County Health Department has released new guidance for third and booster doses of the Pfizer COVID vaccine. A booster dose is recommended for certain adults who received the second of two doses of the vaccine at least 6 months ago including those: 65 or older, living in a long-term care facility, or those 50-64…

“Steppin’ Into My Shoes” Radio Play with the Civic Ensemble – September 11, 18, and 25, 2021

By Felix Teitelbaum | September 7, 2021

The in-person listening party and talkback at the Cherry ArtSpace was on September 25 and it was a beautful experience. Based on the oral history interviews that members conducted in Fall 2020, the play was produced  exploring themes of family, harm reduction, and hopes and dreams of those who have experienced incarceration. Aiming to disrupt…

Active COVID Cases Reach New Heights, Hospitalizations Remain Low

By WRFI News Staff | September 2, 2021

TOMPKINS COUNTY, NY – There are 428 active cases of COVID-19 in Tompkins County, burying the previous all time high of 330 active cases on January 8th, 2021. On August 26th,  there were just 186 active cases. There have been an average of 60 new cases every day for the past week. While the rates…

CALL-IN SHOW: “1000 Conversations,” Ithaca’s Green New Deal w/ Luis Aguirre-Torres

By WRFI News Staff | September 2, 2021

Two years ago, the City of Ithaca passed the Green New Deal resolution, promising that whatever it does to fight climate change will benefit the whole community, especially people with limited means.  As the city moves to decarbonize transportation and electricity sources and change the way it heats and cools its buildings, it’s also asking…

Push is On for Stronger NY Retirement Savings Program to Become Law

By Michayla Savitt | September 1, 2021

ALBANY, N.Y. — A bill to bolster the New York Secure Choice Savings Program will reach Gov. Kathy Hochul’s desk in the coming months. Proponents of the measure said its approval will allow New Yorkers to save for retirement more easily. The legislation would apply to companies with at least 10 employees that don’t already provide a…

Record for New and Active COVID Cases Broken in Tompkins Co.

By WRFI News Staff | August 31, 2021

TOMPKINS COUNTY, NY – Tompkins County’s record for new cases of COVID-19 has been broken. The Health Department is reporting 130 new positive cases of COVID today, and a total of 364 active cases. The rise in cases is largely being attributed to the arrival of college students. In response to the sharp increase, Tompkins County…

EPA Built a Lead Containment Wall at Ithaca Falls. Will it be Enough?

By WRFI News Staff | August 31, 2021

      And that was the voice of Walter Hang, talking about Ithaca Falls: a spectacular natural area, that’s contaminated with lead.  Efforts to clean up the lead have gone on for almost 20 years, and now the EPA is near completing a limestone wall to contain the pollutants. Once that wall is done,…

Taxi Driver Robbed of Vehicle at Gun Point

By WRFI News Staff | August 30, 2021

ITHACA, NY – An Ithaca taxi driver was robbed of their vehicle on Saturday.  The Ithaca Police department reported two suspects in the robbery. The victim told police that one of the suspects pointed a rifle at them, demanding the keys to their taxi while they were sitting in the vehicle. The two suspects fled…