Headlines for November 1, 2022

Ithaca’s Streets and Facilities Division is requesting that residents not pile their leaves in the street. The city municipal code forbids leaf piling, since leaves can act as slipping hazards, cover potholes, and cause floods by clogging storm sewers. Leaves should instead be placed in bags or waste bins, and labeled with yard waste tags for pickup.   

The Ithaca Voice reports that Common Council approved funding of seven unappointed police officers in the IPD on Wednesday. The positions were originally planned to be left vacant under Acting Mayor Laura Lewis’ proposed 2023 budget. However, an amendment brought by Ithaca Alderpersons Cynthia Brock and George McGonigal, created the jobs and pulled an extra $52,843 out of Ithaca’s fund balance. Largely a symbolic effort, the decision signals that the city is supportive of the police department's recruiting efforts and is willing to invest in new officers. Two dissenting votes, Alderpersons Jorge DeFendini and Phoebe Brown, argued that the amendment reinforced what they called a “false narrative” that Ithaca’s Reimagining Public Safety (RPS) initiative is making the department an unappealing workplace. Acting Mayor Lewis, who also dissented, said the money would be better spent for other purposes. 

Republican members of the New York State Board of Elections have stymied an investigation into alleged campaign violations by Lee Zeldin’s gubernatorial campaign. On Tuesday, they successfully blocked an attempt by the board’s chief enforcement counsel to subpoena records by simply not showing up for the hearing. According to the Times Union, Zeldin is facing increased scrutiny for his campaign's close ties to two political action committees—Save Our State NY and Safe Together New York. Election laws prohibit PACs from working too closely within or alongside political campaigns.

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