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Friday, March 27th

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Global IMC Network

The Southern Tier is going solar!

March 24, 2015 by pegjohnston

Southern Tier Solar Works (STSW), a program of the Binghamton Regional Sustainability Coalition (BRSC), is launching Solarize Southern Tier East (SSTE), to bring solar energy to our area.  SSTE offers homeowners and small businesses a path to energy savings that are fixed, predictable, and long-term.
The SSTE campaign will serve Broome, Tioga, Chenango, Delaware and Otsego Counties, and will partner with three competitively-selected, installer partners—Astrum Solar, ETM Solar/TAITEM Engineering, and Renovus Energy—with the goal of doubling existing residential solar in the five counties. The SSTE 2015 campaign is a limited-time initiative designed to incentivize “going solar” with the help of a streamlined site-assessment process and group discounts. Online enrollment will run thru June 10th. Early enrollment and contracting is rewarded through higher State incentives and earlier installations. Registration and all program information will be available at:
The public will have 10 weeks to enroll during this campaign.  The more people who sign up, the lower their cost becomes. Installations will begin this summer, with most completed before winter of 2015. Financing is available through NYSERDA’s Green Jobs Green New York program and through select banks and credit unions.
Two program launch events and more than 30 community meetings, brown bag lunches, and solar home tours across the five-county region – all free and open to the public – will give participants opportunities to learn what it takes to go solar.
Solarize programs jump-start regional solar markets, lower price volatility and bring energy independence to our communities. By increasing our energy efficiency and our use of renewable energy sources, New York can become a national leader in the clean energy economy. Solar power is the most plentiful, free, and constant source of energy on our planet.
Don’t be left out!  Be a part of an energy future that will benefit our entire society—from local job growth, to lower energy costs, to the improved health and well-being of our communities. Come to a Solarize Community Meeting this spring!

Community Meeting
Wednesday, April 15th: Vestal Public Library
320 Vestal Parkway East, VESTAL, NY  7:00-9:00 pm
Solar Tour
Saturday, April 18th: Owego-Apalachin
10 am - 2 pm
Registration information available by calling 607-342-3159
Community Meeting
Monday, April 20th: Broome County Public Library
185 Court Street, BINGHAMTON, NY  6:00-8:00 pm
Southern Tier Earth Fest - Exhibition
Saturday, April 25th: SUNY Broome Community College
907 Upper Front Street, BINGHAMTON, NY 10 am–4 pm
Community Meeting
Wednesday, April 29th: Spencer Town Hall
79 E Tioga Street, SPENCER, NY  7:00-9:00 pm

and other locations and time, please call

Orchid Photo/Art Submissions Sought

March 20, 2015 by pegjohnston

The Southern Tier Orchid Society hosts its annual orchid show May 2-3 at the Oakdale mall and part of the Exhibit is a a contest in Painting and Drawing, Photography, and Sculpture/3D/Other Media. Also a k-12 category.  Submissions must be presented Friday May 1 from 3- 7:30 More info on the attached form.


File Attachment: 

Fracking May Not Have Been Banned in New York

March 19, 2015 by imc-editor

Contrary to Widespread Opinion Shale Fracking May Not Have Been Banned in New York

It is a huge mistake in politics to declare victory before you are absolutely certain that you have won. The applicable rule is "trust, but verify." That is why we must clarify the Cuomo administration's recent landmark decision to prohibit shale fracking in New York. When the New York State Department of Health (DOH) released A Public Health Review of High Volume Hydraulic Fracturing (HVHF) for Shale Gas Development on December 17, 2014, it was widely reported that shale fracking had been banned in New York.

Unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that we do not know that for certain. The Public Health Review recommended that Shale fracking "should not proceed in New York," but we do not know if it will be banned for good. This is a critically important distinction for reasons explained below. The Public Health Review report makes no mention of banning shale fracking or enacting any kind of permanent shale fracking prohibition. You can read the report for yourself:  When the Cuomo administration announced the Public Health Review, no shale fracking ban was declared by Governor Cuomo, Health Commissioner, Dr. Howard A. Zucker, or Environmental Conservation Commissioner, Joe Martens.  You can watch the meeting in its entirety:

What Does the DOH Public Health Review Actually Recommend?

The Public Health Review simply concludes on page two: "Until the science provides sufficient information to determine the level of risk to public health from HVHF to all New Yorkers and whether the risks can be adequately managed, DOH recommends that HVHF should not proceed in New York State (emphasis added)." Unfortunately, the Public Health Review does not say how long shale fracking "should not proceed in New York" or how authorities in our state should determine that "the science provides sufficient information to determine the level of risk to public health from HVHF to all New Yorkers and whether the risks can be adequately managed..." After all our incredible hard work, these extraordinarily important questions cannot be left to chance and must be fully resolved before it is too late. That is why I write today.

Preventing Adoption of an Inadequate Final SGEIS is More Important Than Ever

DEC Commissioner Martens stated during the cabinet meeting that the Public Health Review findings and recommendations would be implemented by adopting a Final Supplemental Generic Environmental Impact Statement (SGEIS). We have no idea what is going on due to a total lack of openness and transparency about the scope of the Final SGEIS. Nevertheless, it could be released any day. Extreme caution is warranted in this matter because the SGEIS was originally intended to permit shale fracking in New York State. That is made perfectly clear by its title: "Well Permit Issuance for Horizontal Drilling and High-Volume Hydraulic Fracturing in the Marcellus Shale and Other Low-Permeability Gas Reservoirs." In short, it is imperative that we prevent any Final SGEIS from being adopted until we are certain that it would translate the Public Health Review's critically important findings and recommendations into public policy reality. In addition, shale fracking must not be permitted by the Final SGEIS until all of the documented concerns about that proceeding are fully resolved.

Read a formatted alert:

That is the purpose of our latest self-explanatory coalition letter:


For more than five years, the New York Marcellus Shale campaign has focused on preventing adoption of an inadequate Final SGEIS that could greenlight shale fracking. Achieving that goal is more important than ever. The Public Health Review notes: "Based on this review, it is apparent that the science surrounding HVHF activity is limited, only just beginning to emerge, and largely suggests only hypotheses about potential public health impacts that need further evaluation (emphasis added)." See page one. At a minimum, we must make sure that no shale fracking is allowed in New York: "Until the science provides sufficient information to determine the level of risk to public health from HVHF to all New Yorkers and whether the risks can be adequately managed..." If that onerous requirement can be enforced, shale fracking might not be permitted in New York for decades to come, if ever. If the Cuomo administration actually bans shale fracking by adopting a permanent, legally binding prohibition, so much the better.

Mural Fest April & Path Through History

March 3, 2015 by pegjohnston

Save the Date!  Mural Fest scheduled for April 26th, along the riverwalk, with mural painting, interactive art, musical entertainment and much much more.

Also note Path Through History June 20th, a Sat. We will be doing a mural tour downtown as well as lots of other historical tours and events.


Pi Day 3/14/15 Time to Stand up for Science

March 3, 2015 by pegjohnston

The Pi Day of the century, 3.14/15 is only a little over a week away. For a time now Pi Day has been all about fun and of course pie, but with the way in recent years, science and even reality itself have come more and more under attack, I’m thinking maybe this year it’s time for Pi Day to emerge as something more than just fun.
For so much of our history, the people of our country and the world have benefited greatly from the science-based reality that has shaped America’s future. Science may be based on numbers, but science's actual value is in its humanity. It's beyond doubt that through science and the honest representation of reality our lives have become safer, healthier and happier.
Yet today the very science that has done so much to reduce suffering in our lives is now under attack. From the climate, to vaccines, to Wisconsin's own Governor Walker’s belief that there are more votes in denying evolution than there are in embracing it, clearly somewhere something has gone very wrong. There is more than enough blame to go all around for how we got here, but maybe this is one of those times that where we are is not nearly as important as where we need to be.
Maybe rather than a debate of our differences, what we need is a celebration of what we share. We think Pi Day could grow into just the holiday we need. There really is no time to lose to get on to celebrating the truth of science-based reality and the math behind it. And there is also no time better than now to get back to celebrating the kindness, compassion and the nurturing nature of our shared humanity that has always been behind the very best that science has brought to our lives.
In Pi, the number is all the value and beauty and wonder that is at the heart of the reality science holds. In the gift of a good slice of pie, the desert is all the kindness and compassion that our shared humanity encompasses. Pi Day really is ready to become so much more. And could there be a better day to relaunch Pi Day as the holiday we truly need than 3.14/15; the Pi Day of the Century?

THE TAKERS DO NOT WANT TO SHARE - What the Press will not print.

March 1, 2015 by activ60

While billionaires buy their own islands at $15 million a clip to park their yachts, the top 10 hedge fund managers only pay 15% tax on their $12 billion(compared to 70% in the past) while you pay 20% if you are lucky to make $40,000, or you may have lost your home in the mortgage debacle or from your health care bankruptcy. Citigroup with $6.4 B and J.P. Morgan with $17.2 B in 2013 paid NO taxes. The MAKERS are all on Wall Street along with the banks like HSBC who laundered money to dodge taxes while George Will’s TAKERS wait in the food line for over an hour. What George does not tell you(Press Jan 22) about his policy wonk Nicholas Eberstadt is that he is funded by the neoconservative American Enterprise Institute, a right-wing, pro-business think tank. Even though George and Eberstadt state the growth in their ‘welfare state’ occurred to those who were ‘means- tested’ (which means they qualified by the Puritanical hoop they jumped), they blame it on a lack of personal character. And where do the CEOs of the media empires who spread the greed message take responsibility? The wealthy do not like it that the paupers picked up their cocaine habits and want one of their tvs. Even though 80% of the middle class has awoken to the lack of jobs sent overseas and that the bill was sent to them, these economists will not take the responsibility for these policies and the income inequality, instead they cry foul. The lower-skilled workers have known this for 25 years as the manufacturing jobs vanished. Instead they should tell the capitalists to make more jobs. The gall of dumping people on charity and then blaming them. The playing field is not fair nor level. “Privilege is not knowing that you’re hurting others and not listening when they tell you.”—Dashanne Stokes So how does the trickle down of greed play out locally? Foremost it began with shallow giveaways to millionaire developers that pay no taxes and then leave town while local four-unit landlords had a 30% tax increase. Then came raising the bus rates. The lack of a seat and your claustrophobia does not matter. More rural Tioga lost bus service. Further proof we are eliminating human services was the closure of the County mental health clinic. Some private providers already closed the intake door, other mentally ill are jammed up waiting months for treatment. Even though you do not know them, someone who cannot afford their medication lurkes in the health care shadows. The proposed TPP will extend monopoly drug patents for pharmaceutical giants maintaining high prices. And will the poor elderly be easily visited by their family and protected by local accountability in the County nursing home or tossed aside like the mentally ill? Heed the words of John Adams: “Government is instituted for the common good; for the protection, safety, prosperity, and happiness of the people; and not for profit, honor or private interest of any one man, family, or class of men..”

Panel discussion on law enforcement and minority communities

03/05/2015 - 5:00pm
Decker Health Building, SUNY Broome, Front St. Binghamton NY

From protests over the deaths of Eric Garner and Michael Brown to the #BlackLivesMatter movement on social media, the relationship between law enforcement and communities of color has become a focus of national dialog and media coverage.

Learn how the local community stands on the issues at a panel discussion and open forum from 5 to 7 p.m. March 5 in SUNY Broome’s Decker Health Sciences Building Room 201.

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