WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

James Brown

Before coming to WXXI News, James spent a decade in marketing communications, while freelance writing for Rochester City Newspaper. While at City, his reporting focused primarily on arts and entertainment.

James cut his teeth in journalism as an associate producer and weekend assignment editor at WHEC-TV.

A Rochester native and an East High School graduate, James earned a Bachelor of Communications degree from Niagara University where he won awards for his poetry and resurrected the school’s radio station.

U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer called the $2 trillion coronavirus stimulus package “the exact kind of medicine” that the nation and the state needs. 

During a conference call with U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand on Wednesday, Schumer said nearly every New Yorker will likely be touched by the aid package.

“We can tell New Yorkers that help is on the way,” said Schumer. “It's quick aid and large aid, big aid.”

The package includes billions for state and county governments, including $128 million for Monroe County, and funding for transit systems like RTS, hospitals, small businesses, nonprofits, Native American reservations, and extended unemployment payments. 


Keeping plastic bags out of landfills and the environment is the goal of New York State’s ban of the bags in grocery stores, but Foodlink’s CEO Julia Tedesco said there could be other consequences.

“We are also acutely aware and have had concerns that it could have a negative impact on low-income households who might not be able to afford these reusable bags,” said Tedesco.

Five years ago, a retired school administrator from Batavia named Loren Penman had a conversation with her neighbor. What she didn’t know then is that talk would inspire the next phase of her life. 

Penman said her neighbor was hoping that her grandson Ali, who lives in Albany, could get back to Letchworth State Park soon. She told Penman that Ali was a different kid inside the park.

The former chief diversity officer at The College at Brockport who was fired Friday issued his first public statement on the matter Monday.

Cephas Archie received a wave of support from people across the community, including East High Superintendent Shaun Nelms and Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren. Students and community members protested on campus and online using the hashtag #weseeyou, or the phrase: "We stand with Dr. Archie."

State Sen. Rich Funke wants harsher penalties for people who assault sports referees during games. 

As he made the announcement at the Schottland YMCA in Pittsford, numerous Section V referees joined him. They say a growing level of disrespect toward referees is driving people out of the business. That’s why Funke has submitted legislation specifically protecting them.


Federal and state agencies are nearing the end of a project to bring Lake Sturgeon back to the Genesee River. 

Webster Piersall from the State Department of Environmental Conservation says the project started in 2003 after the federal government required the restoration of those fish.


Two board members of the National Women’s Hall of Fame addressed one of their most controversial inductees Tuesday. 

Actress Jane Fonda, along with the late Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, activist Angela Davis and eight other groundbreaking women, will become the newest members of the hall in September.

Landlords and tenants are dealing with the ripple effects of New York state’s updated rent laws. 

Housing attorney Nicholas Miraglia, from Burgess & Miraglia, specializes in evictions. He said that he handled more than 3,000 evictions in Rochester, Buffalo and Syracuse last year and noted three key changes for renters.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and state agency officials were in Rochester on Monday to kick off a new commission that will work to toughen the infrastructure along the Lake Ontario shoreline.

The Lake Ontario Resiliency and Economic Development Initiative, or REDI, commission is part of the state’s response to the flooding that has hit the south shore of the lake this year, just two years after the last wave of floods that damages homes and other properties.

Cuomo says a number of state agencies will be involved.

 The U.S. Census is an accounting of everyone who lives in the country.

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