Local News: September 15, 2023

- More details about Cornell’s New Payment Agreement with Ithaca -

The new payment agreement between Cornell University and the City of Ithaca was announced on September 14. In it, the Ivy League university agrees to pay its host city $4 million dollars a year with regular increases for inflation over the next 21 years. Ithaca currently gets $1.6 million. The payments are in place of property taxes because the university is tax-exempt. Mayor Laura Lewis has stated that the assessed value of Cornell’s property is  $33 million dollars. The City asked for $8 million dollars a year in the new agreement. The request was later reduced to $5 million but Lewis says Cornell ended negotiations in August saying they would only give $3 million. If the new agreement is approved by Ithaca’s Common Council the City would receive an additional $2.4 million payment this year. The Common Council is scheduled to vote on the plan at a special meeting on September 20.

- State Public Service Commission votes to continue NYSEG audit -

New York’s Public Service Commission unanimously voted on Thursday to continue it’s audit of NYSEG. The audit will look into the power company’s operations and management. The action comes as NYSEG is asking for a rate increase.  Customer complaints about service and billing have risen over the past five years. The Commission has the legal authority to conduct audits every five years. The last time NYSEG was audited was in 2017.

- CVS and others Cancel New COVID-19 vaccination appointments over insurance issues -

If you have an appointment for the latest COVID-19 vaccine you might want to check with your insurance provider. The Albany Times Union is reporting that people in some parts of New York with appointments at CVS and Walgreens have been told their insurance company will not cover the cost. The problem isn’t affecting all insurers. It seems to be mostly with Empire Blue Cross and the reason seems to be a technical one. Some insurers haven’t updated the billing codes for the vaccinations. The shots could cost $200 out-of-pocket. The CDC approved the latest vaccine on September 12. It was made to protect against XBB variants and scientists say it may provide some protection against newer variants.

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