FOCUS Forums


Special Evening Forum: Thursday, Jan. 31, 2019

FOCUS and Leadership Greater Syracuse invite you to

a conversation with

Syracuse Mayor Ben Walsh and

Onondaga County Executive J. Ryan McMahon

For More information on FOCUS Forums, Click HERE

Meet the Police Chief: Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019


invite you to join in the discussion over morning coffee with


Syracuse Police Chief Kenton Buckner

at the Syracuse University Community Engagement Offices, 4th floor of the Nancy Cantor Warehouse, 350 W. Fayette St., Syracuse, NY.

Register HERE

HeatSmart CNY

For more information contact: 

Lindsay Speer  Campaign Manager, HeatSmart CNY  833-315-4328

HeatSmart CNY community initiative schedules four free public workshops and open house events

Winter is finally here, a polar vortex is making the news, and many of us are suddenly way too cold in our homes instead of feeling safe and snug. It’s a great time to learn about HeatSmart CNY, how to improve the comfort of our homes and buildings, and how to save money on heating

HeatSmart CNY has scheduled four events during the next three weeks. 

WHEN & WHERE      

Geothermal Open House

January 19, 2:00PM to 4:30PM 

118 Shirley Road  Syracuse 13224

Free Public Workshop

January 24, 6:00PM to 8:00PM

Southwest Community Center

401 South Avenue  Syracuse 13204

Free Public Workshop

January 31, 7:00 to 8:30 PM

Bishop Harrison Center,

1340 Lancaster Road, Syracuse

Geothermal Open House

February 2, 2:00PM to 4:30PM

7375 Song Lake Road  Tully 13159


At workshops about the HeatSmart CNY program, participants learn about efficient heat pump technologies including ground source (or "geothermal") and air source (sometimes called "ductless mini-splits") heat pumps and insulation improvements.  Expert installers are present to answer technical questions.  Information will be provided about links to the incentives and tax credits available.  for people to make building envelope improvements and to install more efficient heating and cooling systems in residences, businesses, and community buildings.

At open house events, people can visit local homes with heat pumps in operation and talk to the homeowners and installers about the experience and the process, as well as get an abbreviated introduction to the HeatSmart CNY initiative.

All events are free and open to the public.

WHO (Available for Interviews)        

  • HeatSmart CNY Program Director Chris Carrick

  • HeatSmart CNY Campaign Manager Lindsay Speer

  • HeatSmart CNY Partner-Installers: representatives from A.C.E.S. Geothermal, Geotherm Inc, Halco, and Snug Planet

  • Steering Committee community volunteers

  • Homeowners who had ground source (geothermal) heating

  • Homeowners who are enrolling in the HeatSmart CNY program


  • Displays about geothermal systems

  • Attendees at an event

  • Images of local CNY homes heated with heat pumps available upon request.

What is HeatSmart CNY:  HeatSmart CNY is a grassroots community initiative to support residents, businesses, and community groups in exploring ways to improve how they heat and cool their buildings. We will connect you to local heating and cooling experts who offer energy efficiency retrofits and the latest energy efficient technologies, such as geothermal systems, cold climate air source heat pumps, and hot water heat pumps, and building envelope improvements such as air sealing and insulation. The campaign is a partnership between the Central New York Regional Planning and Development Board and Alliance for a Green Economy, and it is directed by community leaders who are volunteering their time to support this effort.

How HeatSmart CNY works:  Through community events, open houses, and workshops, HeatSmart CNY provides information about sustainable heating and cooling systems and provides access to vetted and trusted installers.  HeatSmart participants will learn what they can do to improve the efficiency and comfort of their homes and buildings, and receive a free site visit and evaluation to determine which clean heating and cooling technologies are best suited for their home or business.  In select communities, targeted campaigns may provide additional savings on installation costs by signing up multiple homes in a short time period. We also have some grants available for low and moderate income households to help defray the up-front costs to switching to a heat pump.



CNY Arts has received the first key grant to develop Arts and Entertainment District Master Plans for Syracuse and the communities of Oneida, Cortland, Auburn and Oswego — Master Plans aimed at spurring growth of the non-profit arts sector, and entertainment venues and other arts-related businesses.  The $100,000 grant from Empire State Development Corporation in partnership with the CNY Arts Regional Economic Development Council will help underwrite the Phase 1 Master Planning for our pilot cities, which we anticipate will be completed by late winter 2019. 

Below is a link to an online questionnaire you can use to share your input with CNY Arts and the Lakota Group team working on the CNY Arts and Entertainment District planning in your city.  Please keep in mind that we are aware that each community has different issues and approaches to cultural planning. We gathered a significant amount of input already, and we will take it all into consideration when drafting our planning recommendations.

You can find the survey HERE

Thank you for your time participating in this CNY Arts project – an outcome of your regional cultural plan ENGAGE CNY! Again, your contribution and participation are vitally important.

Stephen Butler, Executive Director
421 Montgomery Street, 11th Floor
Syracuse, New York 13202
Phone: 315-435-2155

Nick Kalogeresis, AICP, Associate Principal
116 West Illinois Street, Floor 7
Chicago, Illinois 60654
Phone: 312-467-5445

OCRRA Textile drop off event: October 20th



 October 20, 2018

Clean your closets and donate your old textiles and clothing, even if they are torn, missing buttons, or have broken zippers at OCRRA's Textile Drop Off Event happening Sat., Oct. 20 from 8 am to 12 noon at Destiny USA's Pink Parking Lot (off of Solar St, behind the Hiawatha pedestrian bridge).

Shoes and other textiles including clothing, hats, linens/sheets, towels, curtains, stuffed animals, backpacks, etc. are accepted at this event. These items do not have to be in wearable condition, but they must be clean and dry.

If these items can't be reused or resold locally, they can be recycled into industrial cloths or insulation!

This event is free for Onondaga County residents, no appointment is necessary.

Can't make the event? You can donate textiles and clothing year-round at any of the drop-off locations listed here