August 2016: Business Briefcase


New talent takes the air at Tunes 92.5 FM

Pam Summers, a new radio show host with Intrepid Broadcasting, Inc., launched her first show Aug. 8 on Tunes 92.5/104.5 FM, WBLH Radio, Watertown.

Ms. Summers’ new show runs from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays. She previously worked as on-air talent with Stephens Media, Watertown.

Tunes 92.5/104.5 FM is live from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. and is looking to hire radio show hosts to work from 7 p.m. to midnight. Other openings include account executive, board operator and internship positions.

Intrepid Broadcasting is owned by State College, Pa.-based Magnum Broadcasting, Inc. It launched the Watertown station in August 2008.


RSI Roofing receives excellence award

RSI Roofing, Inc., Gouverneur, was named recipient of the Carlisle’s 2016 Excellence in Single-Ply award from Carlisle SynTec, a manufacturer of single-ply roofing solutions in Carlisle, Pa.

The award is considered one of the most prestigious in the commercial roofing industry and was created to identify and reward Carlisle SynTec’s most successful contractors.

RSI Roofing has installed and warranted 15.9 million square feet of Carlisle SynTec’s single-ply roofing systems and has completed 921 Perfect 10 installations, a Carlisle SynTec roof installed to the highest standards judged by an inspection process by the manufacturer.

RSI Roofing has installed more than 52 million square foot of roofing and its more prominent projects include the Pentagon, Washington, D.C.; the Frederic Remington Art Museum, Ogdensburg; Robert Moses Power Dam, Massena; Boldt Castle, Alexandria Bay; and Jones Apparel Group, South Hill, Va.


Barley crop insurance expands state coverage

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Risk Management Agency announced last month that it would expand conventional barley crop insurance to 13 new counties in New York and an additional 16 counties for crop year 2017.

This expansion comes after U.S. Sen. Kirstin Gillibrand, D-NY, called on U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack to provide crop insurance for barley in all New York counties where production is possible. Before the expansion, barley crop insurance was only available in 28 counties across New York. Since 2011, there has been a 72 percent increase in farm-based breweries, cideries, and distilleries in the state York, which has created significant demand for barley and other small grains.

In her letter to the agriculture department, Mrs. Gillibrand explained that many producers outside these areas could benefit from crop insurance for barley. By expanding the current barley crop and developing a production history, insurers would have the data they need to create coverage for valuable malting barley that already covers nearly 2,000 acres of New York farmland.

Due to the New York State Farm Brewing Law passed in 2012, a percentage of gain used in production must be grown in New York. The legislation was designed to increase demand for locally grown products to further increase economic impact and create new businesses surrounding the brewing industry.


New eatery opens in downtown Postdam

A new downtown Potsdam restaurant, Bourbon Barrel Bar-b-que, opened last month at 6 Elm St., above Between the Buns.

The restaurant, owned by Marc C. Morley and wife, Megan, specializes in burgers and sandwiches, and has a selection of 20 different bourbons.

The restaurant offers meats from the smoker, including barbecued brisket, pulled pork, ribs, sausages and chicken.

Seafood and steak dishes are also available plus cold salads like macaroni, potato and pasta. Warm side dishes such as baked beans, macaroni and cheese and mashed potatoes will be offered. Catering is also available.

The dining room has been remodeled to seat up to 100 people. The upstairs was split into two rooms. Food is prepared separately from Between the Buns in a new kitchen area. The eatery employs 15.


National real estate companies to merge

Realty USA and Howard Hanna Real Estate Services announced in early July that the two companies would merge, providing Realty USA offices with new services to benefit customers and real estate agents.

Howard Hanna will acquire more than 270 offices and 9,000 employees, making the company the third-largest real estate firm in the country.

Other than access to new tools, the merger is not expected to impact either company’s operations or staff numbers. The only change will be the additional tag line “A Howard Hanna Company.”

The merging companies’ combined performance in 2015 was $16.2 billion in closed sales volume and 89,737 closed transactions.


St. Lawrence among best liberal arts colleges

St. Lawrence University, Canton, was ranked 29 on a list of the best liberal arts colleges in the U.S. and 10th in best colleges for merit aid by Money magazine.

The school was ranked 95 overall out of 705 schools.

The university was recognized for its common first-year program, 85 percent graduation rate within six years, and high levels of student involvement in athletics and student organizations. Also mentioned were that 55 percent of students received need-based aid and 35 percent received merit aid from the school.

Anonymous student reviewers said they appreciated things like the diversity of campus, the alumni network and even the area’s frigid winters.

In the overall rankings Clarkson University, Potsdam, was ranked 137, Syracuse University 294, SUNY Oswego 529 and SUNY Potsdam 571.

Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art, New York City, was the highest-ranked school in the state, at eighth. Princeton University, New Jersey, was the top-ranked school in the magazine’s list.


Excellus recognizes north country nonprofits

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield recently presented grants to the Cornell Cooperative Extension Association of Jefferson County, Watertown, and the Community Health Center of the North Country and GardenShare, Canton.

The three north country nonprofits were among those selected from a pool of 185 upstate New York applications to receive Excellus BlueCross BlueShield’s 2016 Community Health Awards.

Each award recipient received up to $4,000 of the $87,000 allocated by the company to help fund health and wellness programs in the company’s 31-county upstate region.

The Community Health Center of the North Country, Canton, will use the money to make 250 carbon monoxide detectors and 300 informational brochures available to St. Lawrence County residents, 26 percent of whom do not have a carbon monoxide detector in their homes.

Cornell Cooperative Extension Association of Jefferson County, Watertown, will use its award to fund “4-H Up for the Challenge” at after-school programs in Jefferson, Lewis and St. Lawrence counties. The program’s research-based curriculum helps youths set goals and make healthy decisions regarding physical activity, health and nutrition.

GardenShare has already allocated its grant money to make bonus Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits available to low-income St. Lawrence County residents who shop at farmer’s markets.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield presents its Community Health Awards as part of its mission to improve the health and health care of the residents of the communities it serves.

The company’s Community Health Awards are granted to Central New York institutions that positively influence the health of the community. Awards are based on scope of need, goals of the program, number of people expected to benefit from the program and positive impact on the community’s health status.