Solar Up Broome and Tioga! Southern Tier Solar Works, a program to bring affordable solar power to the people in Broome and Tioga Counties, is now accepting sign ups to have solar installed onto residential homes.
· Visit on-line and sign up to attend a workshop near you at www.southerntiersolarworks.org .
· Visit STSW at the Southern Tier Home & Garden Show booth #170 at the Binghamton U Events Center, Saturday, March 29 (9AM-7PM) and Sunday, March 30 (10AM-4PM)
Incentives and pricing is better than ever. Financing and leasing means you can go solar for NO upfront cost.
Southern Tier Solar Works (STSW) is a community-led initiative to bring solar energy to homes and businesses in our region, starting with Broome and Tioga Counties. STSW’s first solar initiative is a volume-purchasing program that uses state and federal tax credits and incentives to markedly reduce the costs of going solar. This collaborative pilot program of the Binghamton Regional Sustainability Coalition, the Susquehanna group of the Sierra Club, Catskill Mountainkeeper and the Natural Resource Defense Council, is a time-limited initiative designed to help people “go solar” via a streamlined process and group discount. For this first ever program in our area, STSW has partnered with ETM Solar, a NABCEP certified solar installer in Broome and Tioga with 26 years of experience. Our growing list of area co-sponsors includes Cornell Cooperative Extension of Broome County and Revitalize Tioga. Those wishing to take advantage of the volume purchase incentive must sign up to participate before the enrollment deadline of May 20, 2014. The more people who sign up, the lower the price for everyone, so be sure to encourage your friends and neighbors to participate!
The Federal Elections Commission has estimated that in 2012, the first presidential election since the Supreme Court’s so-called Citizen United decision, a total of $7 billion was spent just to elect a president. On that same Election Day 2012, the states of Montana and Colorado each passed, with an average 75% of bi-partisan voters in favor, a resolution calling for a constitutional amendment to limit money in politics. Since then, 14 other states have passed such resolutions. In our own state, several local communities, including nearby Ithaca and Corning, as well as Albany, New York City and Buffalo, have passed a resolution in their local city councils to call for an amendment to the Constitution to overturn the Citizens United decision. It is time for our Greater Binghamton communities to speak out and join them.
It has become clear to increasing numbers of our citizens that our democracy is not just being influenced by, but is being taken over and controlled by, fewer and fewer, larger and larger entities like big corporations. We can no longer term this control and manipulation of our elections, extending even to the state and local level, a growing problem; as a result of Citizens United, the problem has been raised to the level of a full-blown catastrophe for our democratic process.
No matter our political affiliation, Americans have always believed that we could rely, at least to some extent, on our vote to speak for us in terms of our civic needs and opinions. However, we citizens are now faced with the obvious reality that our votes mean less and less, since elections, like arenas and baseball stadiums, are now being virtually bought and paid for by these large corporations with their almost unlimited budgets.
City of Binghamton To Announce Release Of Draft Comprehensive Plan
Plans Are Result Of Extensive 18-Month Community Outreach Effort
(CITY of BINGHAMTON, N.Y.) The City of Binghamton will announce the release of its draft Comprehensive Plan and Main/Court Street Corridor Plan on Monday, March 24 at 1:30 p.m. at City Hall’s 2nd Floor Art Gallery. Mayor Richard C. David will join members of City Council to announce the release. The plans are the result of an extensive 18-month community outreach effort known as Blueprint Binghamton: Forward Together.
“It’s important to raise awareness for public input in this process,” said Mayor David. “It’s important that residents voice their opinions and ideas about this plan, which will be a guiding blueprint for the growth and development of our community for years to come.”
A Comprehensive Plan is a state-mandated document that describes municipal policies and actions related to land use, neighborhoods, transportation, infrastructure, economic development and quality of life. The City’s last Comprehensive Plan was adopted in 2003.
The 2014 Comprehensive Plan is divided into seven mini-plans, including: Economic Development, Housing, Transportation, Infrastructure, Environment & Open Space, Land Use & Zoning and Community Building. Each mini-plan includes an analysis of existing conditions and summary of key issues, an overview of community input, a series of goals and objectives that relate to the overall vision of the plan and strategy recommendations and action steps to guide implementation.
The Main/Court Street Corridor Plan is a revamped zoning code for the 1.7 mile Main Street-Court Street corridor, excluding the downtown district. The new zoning code is “form-based,” focusing less on land use and density and more on size, form and placement of buildings and parking.
The proposed Code encourages mixed use development and walkability while significantly streamlining the approval process. Upon adoption of the Code, property owners and developers with find a clear, accessible set of zoning requirements.
Blueprint Binghamton was one of several initiatives funded by a $486,058 grant from the Partnership for Sustainable Communities, a federal collaboration between the Departments of Housing and Urban Development, Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation.
The following public meetings are scheduled to collect and discuss comments on the plans:
· Monday, May 5th 6:30PM - Planning Commission Public Hearing – City Council Chambers
· Wednesday, May 7th 6:30PM - City Council Public Hearing 1 – City Council Chambers
· Monday, May 12th 5:00PM – Joint City Council & Planning Commission Session 1 – Broome County Public Library, Decker Room
· Wednesday, May 14th 5:00PM – Joint City Council & Planning Commission Session 2 – Broome County Public Library, Decker Room
· Wednesday, June 18th 6:30PM – City Council Public Hearing 2 – City Council Chambers
A perfect storm is gathering and all the elements are aligning for what may be one of the most intriguing and exciting summers that Binghamton has ever seen.
For several years, a group of local people of all ages, who call themselves the DPA (Department of Public Art) have been planning for the time when all the forces are right, and it appears that the time is this spring and summer.
On a parallel plane, a group of students at Binghamton University have also been planning to create dynamic and exciting art for the public. These two groups will converge on the 26th of March at 7pm at the Cooperative Gallery to share and plan for this exciting time.
ManOne, a graffiti and mural artist is coming to Binghamton University campus on March 25th the old Union Hall to talk about how he helped transform downtown LA with his art. The Department of Public Art has asked that he join in the meeting on the 26th share their common goal.
The theme of this 19th Annual FAST is protecting our community’s neediest with a moral NYS budget. The fast will begin at 8:00 P.M. on Tuesday, March 18th, and conclude at 12:00 Noon on Thursday, March 20th.
The Press Conference will provide information about the Labor-Religion Coalition of New York State and the Annual 40-Hour FAST, its purpose and history. Speakers will remind the community of the importance of joining with people of conscience and faith who will sacrifice to right the ethical wrongs of poverty and income inequality. . The event will serve as an invitation to all in the wider community to participate in a forty-hour period with workers, those who labor, their friends, and families are encouraged to participate in the “fast for justice and a wage one can live on.”
The Greater Binghamton Labor-Religion Coalition is one of several chapters associated with the Labor-Religion Coalition of New York State, a network of people of faith and labor which calls upon our values and morality to give a voice to workers. The annual FAST provides a time to alter our daily habits and to focus upon the personal needs of self and those around us. Fasting is a process which can bring a closer awareness of abundance and want, excess and scarcity, justice and injustice.
In addition to the invitation to fast, the Labor-Religion Coalition invites all citizens to help implement a more equitable society. During this special period and in the coming weeks across New York State, individuals, religious congregations, and labor communities will be calling upon our elected leaders and enlightened employers to develop a more moral budget for New York State and for employers to work toward implementing a living wage for all workers.
About 100 of us + one small dog were waiting at the SUNY Event Center for Cuomo's arrival to speak on Emergency Preparedness. He should start with No Fracking NY!!
Adapted from Seventh Generation blog:
The bees, bats, butterflies, hummingbirds and other species we depend on to pollinate and produce 80% of Earth's flowers and one out of every three bites of food we eat are disappearing. Altogether, pollinators supply $29 billion worth of crops each year in the U.S. Are you ready to say goodbye to apples, almonds, or avocados not to mention strawberries, blueberries, cranberries, melons, peaches, pumpkins, peppermint, tomatoes, wine, etc?
With some important species having declined over 95% in the last decade, this spring is an excellent time to boost the fortunes of our friendly neighborhood pollinators. And there's plenty we can all do at home to help:
On March 25 AND 26th, ManOne will be in Binghamton to engage with the Binghamton and BU Communities about public art. He has just agreed to speak at a community meeting sponsored by the Dept. of Public Art on Wednesday March 26th (gather at 6:30 program at 7 pm) at the Cooperative Gallery 213 State St. Binghamton.
BU's GEN10, whose mission is to lead innovation and creativity in our city, to change mindsets, and transform culture, is flying an urban artist from LA, Man One, into Binghamton to visit and interact with people in the community. Man One transformed downtown L.A. with the power of art, and now he wants to do the same in Binghamton!
Along with a number of other highly involved community members and organizations we will be hosting a speaking event where he will share his story and offer guidance on how to make Binghamton a better place to live, work, and enjoy. The Tuesday March 25th event will be held at 7pm in Old Union Hall on the Binghamton University Campus.
This is part of a bigger plan to put on a downtown Binghamton Mural Festival in May, with Man One as the catalyst for change. This will involve all segments of the community and the meetings he will have with residents will inform the murals we can create. For more information contact binghamtonbridge@ gmail.com.
A peace vigil assembles in downtown Binghamton every Monday evening from 4:30pm to 5:30pm. This picture was taken at about 5pm on my way to the State Office Building for the Moral Monday protest.
Reverend Fred Brooks and others rally and speak out against the proposed State Budget of New York State at the State Office Building on Hawley St., Binghamton. A flyer they handed out at the event make the following key points about the budget, targeting the proposed tax breaks for banks:
"Big Banks Don't Need Tax Breaks