Karen DeWitt

Albany Reporter

Karen DeWitt is Capitol Bureau Chief for New York State Public Radio, a network of 10 public radio stations in New York State. WBFO listeners are accustomed to hearing DeWitt’s insightful coverage throughout the day, including expanded reports on Morning Edition.

DeWitt 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 by the Women’s Press Club of New York State.

DeWitt has served as a panelist for numerous political debates, including the 2014 gubernatorial debate sponsored by WNED|WBFO

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday that a new company has agreed to take over the Fitzpatrick Nuclear Power plant in Oswego and keep it running.  It is part of the governor’s strategy for 50 percent of the state’s power to come from renewable energy by 2030.

WBFO News File Photo

Gov. Andrew Cuomo had harsh words for the state’s comptroller, a fellow Democrat, over questions about the value of the state’s economic development programs.  

WBFO News File Photo

A commission is considering granting as much as a 47 percent pay raise for state lawmakers, and the proposal is generating some backlash, including from Governor Andrew Cuomo.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

Education groups, dismayed by the federal education secretary’s threat to punish schools in New York with high opt-out rates for standardized tests, say he is re-igniting the controversy that state education officials have been trying to calm for the past year.

Karen DeWitt

A routine oversight hearing by the state Assembly turned testy when Howard Zemsky, Governor Andrew Cuomo’s economic development czar, endured over two hours of questions about Cuomo’s economic development programs, which are currently under federal investigation.

Senate Democrats hope once again to take away leadership of the Senate from Republicans in the 2016 elections. The chief engineer of strategy for the Democrats says the Presidential candidates at the top of the ticket will help his candidates win.

Kathy Willens / Associated Press

Governor Cuomo got his moment on the convention stage Thursday night before Hillary Clinton’s speech.

WBFO Albany Correspondent Karen DeWitt

Foreign trade deals are a contentious issue at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. Now New York’s Senior Senator Chuck Schumer is weighing in, saying he is against the Trans Pacific Partnership proposal, known as the TPP.

WBFO Albany Correspondent Karen DeWitt

Governor Cuomo had a full schedule Tuesday at the Democratic National Convention, aimed at showcasing some of his strengths, including supporting LGBT rights and helping the homeless. However, he first shared the stage with Hillary Clinton’s primary opponent, Senator Bernie Sanders.

WBFO Albany Correspondent Karen DeWitt

It’s supposed to be Hillary Clinton’s convention, but the focus Monday was on her primary challenger, Bernie Sanders, and his delegates, who continue to stew over a WikiLeaks release of Democratic National Committee emails that showed favoritism to Clinton over Sanders. 

Andrew Burton / Getty Images

The resignation of Democratic National Convention Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz over the release of emails showing that staff favored Hillary Clinton over Bernie Sanders is overshadowing other news at the beginning of the Democratic National Convention. 

Karen DeWitt

Now that the Republican National Convention is over, the next step for Republicans, after the Democrats are done with their gathering, is to begin the Presidential election campaign.  Carl Paladino, the head of Trump’s New York campaign, expects the state to be in play.

Karen DeWitt

New York’s delegation to the RNC is the national spotlight for casting the votes to put Donald Trump over the top for the Presidential nomination in Cleveland this week. But not all of the state’s politicians are in agreement over some of Trump’s most controversial foreign policies.

WBFO Albany Correspondent Karen DeWitt

The Republican candidate for U.S. Senate running against Chuck Schumer is facing great odds in her campaign against the powerful and popular third-term Senator. Wendy Long addressed the New York delegation Tuesday.

WBFO News File Photo

The Republican National Convention begins in Cleveland Monday, with New York State Republicans hearing from former House Speaker Newt Gingrich and Tennessee Senator Bob Corker,  who are billed as official Trump-Pence surrogates, as well as CNBC contributor Larry Kudlow.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who has offered only lukewarm support in the past for his fellow Democrats in their quest to take over the state Senate, said this week that he would back Democratic candidates in Senate races. He also somewhat reluctantly offered support to his former primary rival, Zephyr Teachout, who is now running for Congress.

Supporters of the two outsider candidates in the Presidential race are finding obstacles to attending the national conventions in Philadelphia and Cleveland, held during the next couple of weeks.

It is summer vacation for school children, but leaders of New York’s rural schools are worrying about the new school year and say they are squeezed by a tax cap and other factors.

WBFO Albany Correspondent Karen DeWitt

Governor Cuomo’s administration is facing greater scrutiny over handling of the Hoosick Falls water crisis. In recent days a Congressional committee opened an inquiry and both the state Assembly and Senate will hold hearings.

One of the centerpieces of Governor Andrew Cuomo’s economic development plans has created just a small number of jobs so far, but the governor is urging patience.

Alliance for Quality Education

It’s been 10 years since New York’s highest court ordered that more state money be paid to schools with the poorest children. But advocates say in the decade since the 2006 ruling, many so called high needs schools have fallen even further behind.


Governor Andrew Cuomo is trying to focus on positive actions in his public events in recent days as a federal investigation into his administration’s economic development programs continues.

Eileen Koteras Elibol

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders made the second stop in his ‘where do we go from here’ tour in Albany Friday afternoon. He told a small but loyal group of supporters that he will fight to get key items into the national Democratic Party platform, including a nationwide $15 minimum wage, and has been in talks with Hillary Clinton’s campaign over a greater focus on progressive issues.

courtesy wnyhomeless.org

Some Homeless advocates are dismayed by what they say is Governor Cuomo’s  failure at the end of the legislative session to follow through with promises to fund five years worth of new supportive housing and other services for the homeless. Their complaints come as the State Comptroller issues a scathing report on the state of homeless shelters across New York.

What began in January as an ambitious reform package to address a wave of corruption at the Capitol, proposed by Governor Cuomo, dwindled to just two proposals by the time the session closed in the pre-dawn hours of Saturday morning. 

Karen DeWitt

Lawmakers wrapped up the 2016 legislative session at around 5 a.m. Saturday morning, agreeing to take steps to cancel the pensions of convicted lawmakers in the future, legalize daily fantasy sports and extend New York City’s mayoral control law for another year.

Karen DeWitt

The legislature was closing down on an end of session  deal that would strip convicted lawmakers of their pensions, extend mayoral control of New York City schools for one more year and legalize Daily Fantasy sports gambling.

Hoosick Falls residents came to the Capitol on Wednesday to demand hearings on the water crisis that has revealed high levels of a toxic chemical in many people’s blood streams.

Karen DeWitt

With the legislative session down to the wire, groups for and against bills including expansion of Uber ride services and ethics reform came to the Capitol to make their voices heard.

Karen DeWitt

As part of the push to end the legislative session by Thursday, state lawmakers representing the PFOA contaminated village of Hoosick Falls want to extend the statute of limitations to bring lawsuits against polluters.