Karen DeWitt

Capitol Bureau Chief at New York State Public Radio

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.

A regular contributor to 'New York NOW,' she frequently appears on the Reporters' Roundtable segment and often 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.

Karen at a Mike Bloomberg press conference in Albany.
Karen at a Mike Bloomberg press conference in Albany.

Karen interviewing SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher
Karen interviewing SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher

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Legislation & Policy
1:30 pm
Fri November 21, 2014

Per diem reform could be on a special session agenda

State lawmakers are pushing for their first pay raise in fifteen years, and they say in exchange, they might even be willing to give up the practice of a daily stipend for each day they spend in Albany, known as per diems, that has sometimes led to abuse.

Legislators receive $172 dollars for every day that they spend in Albany, above normal travel and lodging expenses, and in addition to their $79,500 a year base pay.

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Health & Environment
4:40 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Cancer Society say NYS underspends on anti smoking programs

On the anniversary of the Great American smoke out, a leading anti cancer group says Governor Cuomo’s Administration should be spending more to cut back on smoking.

The American Cancer Society’s Michael Burgess says while the Centers for Disease Control recommends New York State spend $200 million dollars a year on tobacco cessation programs, the current state budget has just under $40 million dollars allotted for it. Burgess says in the past, it’s been demonstrated that spending the money on things like a smokers quit line works.

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Health & Environment
4:01 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

Report critical of Cuomo adm attempts to get clean water loan for Tappan Zee Bridge project

An independent review board has found fault with the Cuomo Administration’s attempts to convert a federal clean water fund loan into construction work for the Thruway’s Tappan Zee Bridge.

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Health & Environment
3:15 pm
Thu November 20, 2014

AG says WNY weather provides more evidence of needed action on climate change

The State’s Attorney General says the Buffalo snowstorms are more evidence that climate change is happening, and that New York and the nation need to work harder to combat the causes of global warming.

State Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says this week in Western New York is another example of weather patterns that are changing, and won’t go back to normal by themselves.

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Legislation & Policy
5:03 pm
Wed November 19, 2014

Conference examines state's infrastructure needs

State lawmakers say they want to act quickly to spend the state’s $5 billion dollar and growing surplus on an infrastructure fund to fix up roads and bridges, among other things. At a conference on the state’s infrastructure, sponsored by a think tank, participants said there are deep needs, and they warn lawmakers not to spend the money frivolously.

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