WXXI AM News

Payne Horning

Payne Horning is a reporter and producer, primarily focusing on the city of Oswego and Oswego County. He has a passion for covering local politics and how it impacts the lives of everyday citizens. Originally from Iowa, Horning moved to Muncie, Indiana to study journalism, telecommunications and political science at Ball State University. While there, he worked as a reporter and substitute host at Indiana Public Radio. He also covered the 2015 session of the Indiana General Assembly for the statewide Indiana Public Broadcasting network.

The historically high water levels on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence River this year have presented those in the shipping industry with both challenges and opportunities.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is not signing a bill the New York State Legislature passed last week that would provide grants for flood victims along Lake Ontario. 

Officials working on the Harriet Tubman Home in Auburn, which Congress established as a national historical park in January, say there's a lot in store for the facility over the next few years. 

The executive director of the Tubman home, Karen Hill, says with the recent national park designation and upcoming release of the $20 Tubman bill, the revered conductor of the underground railroad is finally getting the kind of recognition she deserves.

The del Lago Casino in Seneca County has opened its doors. The  $440 million facility is one of several casinos opening in upstate after after New Yorkers approved a referendum in 2013 that allows for the creation of four non-Indian casinos upstate.

A third of the city of Utica lives below the poverty line, including 47 percent of its children. That is the starting point for the city's new poverty reduction initiative task force. At its first public forum last week, those involved with the project revealed that the problem is even worse for African American children, 72 percent of whom are affected.

The proposed nanotechnology center in Marcy is losing its main investor after the project has become entangled in the state corruption scandal involving the governor’s upstate development programs.

The Austrian company AMS, AG has pulled out of the 450-acre Nanocenter, a chip fabrication project at the campus of SUNY Polytechnic Institute.

The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) voted unanimously Thursday to approve the sale of the FitzPatrick Nuclear Power Plant, an essential component to its completion. 

For the first time in more than 20 years, the state senate seat in New York's 54th district is open. A crowded field of mostly Republican candidates are vying to replace longtime Republican State Sen. Mike Nozzolio, who's retiring. The district encompasses all or portions of Ontario, Wayne, Seneca, Cayuga, Tompkins and Monroe counties. 

The town of Canandaigua's supervisor Pam Helming is considered the GOP favorite. She won endorsements from all six of the county Republican parties. Helming said her top priority in Albany would be to roll back regulations. 

The New York Public Service Commission (PSC) has adopted a 12-year plan to support the state's financially impaired nuclear power plants. The Clean Energy Standard (CES), a component of Gov. Andrew Cuomo's initiative to double the state's renewable energy providers and cut carbon emissions 40 percent by 2030, was approved unanimously at a meeting in Albany Monday.

New York Rep. John Katko (R-Camillus) said his position on climate change is "evolving." The Republican representative recently signed onto a resolution that acknowledges a human role in causing climate change related to erratic and damaging weather patterns. That's a reversal from his 2014 campaign when he said it was unclear if human activities had any influence.

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