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Orange State is a news/talk radio show on Z89 WJPZ 89.1FM; Syracuse, N.Y.
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Friday, April 23, 2010

Orange State, Central New York's Graduation Rates, and Education - 3-12-10

It was another great week of Orange State!  Don't forget to check us out on iTunes and our Twitter!

Orange State's big story was one that touches every community including Central New York. The 2009 graduation rates for the high schools around the state of New York were released. Overall, the graduation rates in Central New York are up, but not quite where they should be. (Click here for the rates over the past 3 years!) There is a glaring difference between the city and suburbs. Corcoran High School was at 53%, Nottingham High School had a 51% graduation rate, Henniger High School had a rate of 47% (Down 5% from 2008), and at the bottom Fowler High School had a 33% graduation rate (Down 3% from 2008). In comparison Onondaga High School had an 82% graduation rate, North Syracuse had an 85% rate, and Liverpool had an 81% graduation rate. Fabius-Pompey High School had a whopping 99% graduation rate. So why is there such a difference between the urban and suburban schools? Rashaud thinks that urban schools do not get as much funding as suburban schools since property taxes in suburban areas are higher.

Meanwhile, the Obama administration will be giving $4.3 million to the states with the best school reform plans next month as part of the Race to the Top Plan. The tactics the Obama administration is using is now under some heavy criticism from teachers' unions for their tactics. The best example was the tactics used at Central Falls Senior High School. The district's Board of Trustees decided to fire all 74 teachers at the school, which had about a 48% graduation rate of 4-year-students. The Obama administration supported the decision. Matt ended up going off on an epic rant that it is everybody's fault. People cannot solely blame the teachers as so many people do. The teachers work very hard, but they can tell a student to do well on a standardized test (which has become one of the most important aspects of education), but if the student doesn't care about doing well, they will not do well. Parents need to take part of the blame because they have to support their children. Finally, the administrations of school districts need to make things easier on teachers as well.

Rashaud brought us the headlines as usual. A deal has been reached on a settlement that could pay up to $657.5 million to responders who became ill by the dust from the destroyed World Trade Centers. Most of that money will be coming from a grant from FEMA. A judge still has to approve the deal. In other big news, Barack Obama has announced how he will use the prize money that he received for winning the Nobel Peace Prize. He will be giving $250,000 to the Fisher House, which provides housing for families of people being treated in military and veteran medical centers and $200,000 toward the Clinton-Bush Haiti Fund. A number of other organizations will be receiving part of the prize money including the Posse Foundation, United Negro College Fund, and the Hispanic Scholarship Fund. Finally, how long would you think is the longest marriage on record? Try 85 years. The couple is respectively 101 and 104 years old. The best part, they Tweet, that's right, Tweet marriage tips! By the way check Orange State's Twitter. Haha, we found a way to do the promo.

Locally, Syracuse has a new anti-street violence program called Operation Snug (Guns spelled backwards). The state money given to the city for the program will be used to do street mediation. A mile of I-81 is still closed because of a building that is crumbling near it. There are so many chemicals in the building that the whole buidling has to be treated as hazardous waste. That means getting rid of the building could be worth $2 million.

In the fun segments Rashaud tried to make up for his trouble with geography in the Orange State of Disarray. One story hit pretty close to home, a state senator is trying to get the state of New York to regulate salt.  That's right, no salt in New York.  *Sigh*  In another state, a booster club at a school was having a book rummage sale, but the books included pornographic and rascist books.  To make it worse, it was an elementary school classroom booster club.  Anyway, nobody won OSD (Doesn't say much for us!).  Jim brought the Audacity of Dopes.  What would you do if you had a really espensive water bill to pay?  You probably wouldn't burn your home down like one man did.  And a Central Pennsylvania man has been charged for 3 different incidents with police officers in, get this, 3 HOURS!!!  Finally, what would you do if a thief was in your car?  One car owner kept hitting the remote-controlled lock on their car every time the thief unlocked the car.  Eventually the thief gave up.  Haha, nice police work.  That's all for Orange State this week!  Tune in in two weeks for the next episode! 

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Orange State and Governor David Paterson's Problems - 3-5-10

Hey everyone!  March is finally here!  That has excited the Orange State staff.  Remember to keep tuning in from noon to 1:00 on Fridays.  Plus check out our Twitter and podcast! 

It was a great day on Orange State as the gang had Casey Seiler of the Albany Times-Union come on the show to talk about the Governor Paterson's scandals, including a possible cover up of a domestic violence charge against his aide David Johnson and the Governor's acceptance of gifts including World Series tickets.  Seiler said the Governor is also in political jeopardy since the month of March is when the "heavy lifting" gets done on the formulation of the state's budget.  The fiscal year starts on April 1.  Right now the state of New York is facing a potential budget defecit between $9 billion and $9.5 billion through the end of March 2011.  Some say this may the most crucial budget of the state in the last two decades and possibly the most crucial since the Great Depression.  Some have suggested that Lieutenant Governor Richard Ravitch lead the way in the creation of the budget.  Obviously, there have been a number of calls for Paterson to resign.  Seiler says that there are many in the legislature who view Paterson's resignation as a fate accompli, either it will happen soon or when Attorney General Andrew Cuomo puts out his report on the issue regarding David Johnson.  Of course, he also said that he could be found not guilty, and he should be presumed innocent until that report says otherwise.       

Rashaud brought the day's headlines as usual.  The House of Representatives passed a major jobs bill, which is always good to see.  In some scarier story, an air traffic controller at JFK International Airport allowed his two kids, both under the age of 10 to direct air traffic (at JFK!).  The pilots did not seem worried, in fact one pilot told the boy he did an awesome job.  Maybe the pilots were ok, but they obviously didn't ask the passengers.  The controller was suspended.  While staying on airports, 11 airports are getting the new body scanners to look through peoples' clothing to detect hidden weapons.  Finally, the Chile earthquake altered the Earth's axis, shortening the day by 1.2 microseconds.  (That's depressing.)  In local news, a mile of I-81 north is still closed and there is a fight over who should pay for the repairs for the building. 

No Orange State would be complete without the Orange State of Disarray.  A town is informing residents to stay indoors and has moved recess indoors after a hawk has been attacking residents.  The hawk has already taken headphones off of a man on a lawn mower and attacked a car.  A country is keeping their ban on chewing gum to reduce gum related litter and vandalism.  CJ rolled to a victory.

In the Audacity of Dopes Jim told us about a deputy in Kentucky who accidently locked himself in jail and then tried to shoot his way out of it.  (Echoes of Barney Fife anyone?)  A lawyer is threatening to sue the Houston George Bush Intercontinental Airport for keeping his $800 coat when he left it in the airport.  Finally, a 54-year-old man who was determined to go to jail tried to steal an officer's gun after he was told the police had nothing to arrest him on.   Finally, a man burned down his house when he tried to melt the icicles on his house with a blow torch.   

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Orange State and President Obama's Healthcare Summit - 2-26

Hey everyone!  It was another great week of Orange State!  Don't forget to check our Twitter and Podcast

This week Matt, CJ, and Rashaud talked about President Obama's Healthcare Summit.  The joint summit was done in front of C-SPAN's television cameras.  Although one representative said that it was the longest he had ever seen the Democrats and Republicans sit in a room and behave in front of so many TV cameras, yet the guys felt the summit did not help accomplish much.  The meeting's most awkward moment when John McCain started talking about what he and Obama were promising during the campaign.  Obama reminded McCain that the election is over.  Is anyone bitter?  John Boehner, the House Minority Leader suggested starting over with a clean slate.  The Orange State guys felt that would do nothing to help, but get the Congress back to where they are now. 

Rashaud brought some breaking news that New York Governor Paterson will not be running for re-election, just shortly after announcing that he will be running for re-election.  Among other gubernatorial news, the Manhattan Madame, Kristin Davis, will be running for governor.  Finally, the guys talked about Tilikum the orca who killed one of his trainers at Sea World.  Is it really a good idea to have killer whales in captivity?

In local news, a New York state bill was passed giving families more control over end of life care.  In other local news, the guys are excited for the Syracuse-Villanova game, the largest home crowd in NCAA history as 34,616 fans will be in attendance.

In Orange State of Disarray we had some interesting stories including a criminal being left handcuffed in a courthouse for 10 hours. (Yes, for the first time in the show's history we showed compassion for a criminal.)  Plus, a country is putting up signs to protect frogs and toads.  Yes, frogs and toads.  You'd be surprise which country is protecting them.  Jim had a great Audacity of Dopes.  A couple of robbers dialed 911 while robbing a car.  A rather idea while stealing a car.  In one of our best dopes stories ever, a man violated his probation to appear on the Jerry Springer Show.  (Only the Jerry Springer Show.)

Of course, this week Orange State had our final Winter Olympics update.  The United States is on track to their best Olympics ever with 32 medals and 8 golds.  The U.S. won a Nordic Combined gold (Combination of ski jumping and cross country) for the first time ever since it has been an event in 1924.  We also saluted Canadian Joannie Rochette who skated for a silver in the women's singles figuring skating despite the death of her mother just a week before.  As we go into the final weekend Orange State would like to say Go USA and Go World!  The final medals table is now listed below.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Orange State, Tiger Woods' Apology, U.S.-China Relations, and Medicaid Cuts - 2-19-10

Hey everyone!  It was another great week of Orange State!  Don't forget to check out our podcasts and Tweets! 

This week Matt, Rashaud, and CJ discussed Tiger Woods' apology.  This happened to be breaking news since the press conference started just an hour before our show.  The Statesmen felt Woods' apology seemed a little too scripted (He was reading it off a piece of paper.).  They also discussed if he really had to apologize.  The crew also talked about the current state of U.S.-China relations in the wake of President Obama's visit with the Dalai Lama.  The U.S. is heavily in debt to China, but both nations rely heavily on each other.  Finally, the Statesmen discussed how some states are considering cutting Medicaid benefits; quite ironic considering the fight to pass healthcare legislation. 

Rashaud gave the headlines of the day as usual.  In one of the biggest stories of the week, a man crashed a small plane into an IRS office in Texas.  Plus, one school district has bought every student a laptop in which the camera can be activated if the computer is stolen, but one student claims the school spied on him

Erich returned with the CNY Local News.  DestinyUSA won a court decision to get up to $100 million in tax credits.  Could this mean we will see construction?  We also highlighted some local Olympians in Vancouver including SU's first Winter Olympian, hockey player Stephanie Marty, who had a hat trick against Slovakia while playing for Team SwitzerlandErin Hamlin, of Remsen, New York, finished 16th in the women's luge event in Whistler.  Of course there are a couple of Central New York hockey players as well.  We are glad to announce that the U.S. is leading the medal count after week 1 with 18 medals (6 gold).  Germany is in second with 11 medals.  Lindsey Vonn, who we thought would win despite being hurt did get gold.  Rashaud called it!  Some other gold medalists included Shaun White (Snowboarding), Shani Davis (Speedskating), and Evan Lysacek (Men's Figure Skating).  And the Olympics became the first television show to ever beat American Idol in the number of overall viewers.  Yeah for quality television! 

The guys played the Orange State of Disarray.  Believe it or not, recently a state has introduced legistlation to make it illegal to marry your first cousin.  You'd be surprised to know it is actually Maryland.  CJ got his first win!  Jim brought us the Audacity of Dopes as always.  A man within an hour of being charged and bailed of other break-ins was out stealing from cars, offices, and a cathedral.  He was caught by dropping his police charge sheet at one crime scene and the DVD of his police interview at another crime scene.  Enjoy!