Karen DeWitt

Capitol Bureau Chief

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. She has covered state government and politics for the network since 1990.

She is also a regular contributor to the statewide public television program about New York State government, New York Now. She appears on the reporter’s roundtable segment and interviews newsmakers. 

Karen previously worked for WINS Radio, New York, and has written for numerous publications, including Adirondack Life and the Albany newsweekly Metroland.

She is a past recipient of the prestigious Walter T. Brown Memorial award for excellence in journalism, from the Legislative Correspondents Association, and was named Media Person of the Year for 2009 by the Women’s Press Club of New York State.

Karen is a graduate of the State University of New York at Geneseo.

Ways to Connect

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office

In his budget plan, Gov. Andrew Cuomo proposed imposing new higher income taxes on New York’s wealthiest residents if President Joe Biden and Congress don’t come through with enough federal aid to close the state’s budget deficit.

But at the same time, he offered a contradictory message, saying it might hurt the state’s competitiveness and cause the rich to flee the state. 

Governor Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a close ally of President Joe Biden, said it’s a “new day” with Wednesday’s inauguration of Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.But Cuomo said he remains concerned about the slow manufacture of vaccines that could finally end the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cuomo said he’s thrilled to be able to say “President Biden,” and he believes the new president will bring a more loving and healing presence to the nation’s leadership. The governor, who frequently sparred with former President Donald Trump, said the message of resiliency in Biden’s speech matters.

Governor Cuomo's office


In his budget address, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, said the state’s fiscal future is dependent on how much aid it receives from Washington under the new administration of President-elect Joe Biden and the Democratic led Congress. Cuomo is seeking $15 billion to plug two years of state budget gaps, and he’s threatening to sue if he doesn’t get it.

Governor Cuomo's office

Governor Andrew Cuomo is due to release his state budget plan this week, as the state confronts the largest budget deficit the governor has faced in his decade in office, much of it due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

The state was already facing a $6 billion  structural deficit when the fiscal year began last April, and Cuomo had been managing some of the shortfall by practicing some bookkeeping tricks, including delaying Medicaid payments due to health care providers for a few days at the end of the past two fiscal years so that they fell into the next fiscal year.

Governor Cuomo's office

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is warning of a  dangerous second wave of the COVID-19 virus, as new, more contagious  strains have begun to infiltrate the U.S.. And, as New York State struggles with its vaccination roll out, Cuomo says he’s asking on of the major manufacturers if the state can buy vaccines directly.  

Karen DeWitt/New York State Public Radio

The New York State Capitol is bracing for potential violence and armed protesters in the coming days after FBI warnings about significant threats in online chatter from white supremacy and other far-right groups.

State Police said there are no specific credible threats against the building in downtown Albany but are nevertheless stepping up patrols and taking precautions to harden security.

Governor Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday addressed major problems plaguing the state’s vaccine sign-up website, saying there are vastly more New Yorkers eligible to be vaccinated than there are vaccines.

Thousands of frustrated New Yorkers spent hours trying to sign up at the state health department website, which repeatedly crashed or shut people out before they could complete sign-up forms. Others spent hours fruitlessly on hold on a state hotline before being disconnected.

Some did get through, though, and all state facilities offering vaccines are now booked through April.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

One day after announcing that five new state-run vaccination sites are opening this week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office is warning that appointments for the limited number of vaccines at those sites are already booked through April. 

On Wednesday, Cuomo’s office announced that large-scale vaccination sites at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City, the Westchester County Center, the New York State Fairgrounds in Syracuse, State University of New York at Albany and Jones Beach are opening this week and will vaccinate thousands of New Yorkers in the coming months.

Governor Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in the last of four speeches outlining his 2021 plans, detailed billions of dollars in new and ongoing infrastructure projects that he hopes can provide jobs in the post-pandemic economy.

Cuomo on Thursday laid out a vast array of projects, including plans to create a new West Side transit hub in Manhattan that would rebuild the rest of the dilapidated Penn Station and revamp the New York Port Authority bus complex, which he described as an “eyesore.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Wednesday unveiled an ambitious plan to bring more green energy and what he said will be thousands of jobs to New York state.

Plans include new solar farms, offshore wind turbines and more transmission lines across the state.