Plan to Revamp Police Force Proceeds in Ithaca, New York

ITHACA, N.Y. — Officials in an Ivy League town in upstate New York voted to proceed with a hotly debated plan to revamp the police force as part of the nationwide reexamination of law enforcement after the killing of George Floyd.

The Ithaca Common Council unanimously approved a series of reform recommendations Wednesday night that included reconstituting the city police force to add unarmed officers to handle nonviolent calls like petty thefts. 

The Finger Lakes city, home to Cornell University, is among hundreds of municipalities across New York directed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo last year to submit a police reform plan by Thursday or risk a loss of state funding.

The newly approved resolution calls for a task force to design how the new department would work. A report is due Sept. 1. The council would have to vote on additional legislation at that time and the measure could ultimately have to go to a city-wide referendum before approval, WSKG reported.

Armed officers of the 63-officer force would be able to keep their positions, and supporters of the plan said the new unarmed officers would be able to engage more with communities distrustful of police.

"That's what the hope is, is that we're taking this moment to really hit the reset and build something, a new something, again, built for our community and not enhancing a system that frankly there isn't much trust in," said Councilor Stephen Smith.

The proposal led to weeks of debate in Ithaca. Many police officers said it could threaten public safety, while some social justice activists dismissed it as a mere rebranding of the police that would do little to help Black communities. 


ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A serial killer who admitted he was responsible for the deaths of five Alaskans, including committing the first when he was only 14, has died in an Indiana prison, officials said.

Top Stories


A pregnant woman was driving in the HOV lane near Dallas.

General News

NEW YORK – Meropi Kyriacou, the new Principal of The Cathedral School in Manhattan, was honored as The National Herald’s Educator of the Year.


Alberto, Season’s First Named Tropical Storm, Dumps Rain on Texas and Mexico, Which Reports 3 Deaths

TAMPICO, Mexico (AP) — Tropical Storm Alberto rumbled toward northeast Mexico early Thursday as the first named storm of the season, carrying heavy rains that left three people dead but also brought hope to a region suffering under a prolonged, severe drought.

DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip  — Israeli forces shelled tent camps for displaced Palestinians outside Gaza's southern city of Rafah on Friday, killing at least 25 people and wounding another 50, according to the territory's health officials and emergency workers.

LEIPZIG, Germany  — Kylian Mbappé watched from the substitutes’ bench as France and the Netherlands finished 0-0 in a heavyweight European Championship clash on Friday.

NEW YORK – Greek-American long-distance runner Alexi Pappas was featured in Vogue magazine for her latest role as an ambassador for the outdoor brand Merrell and a film project with Merrell and Vogue.

ATHENS - A total of 64 fires broke out in mixed farm and forest land in the last 24 hours, with 46 of them controlled from the very start, the Fire Brigade said in a briefing earlier on Friday.

Enter your email address to subscribe

Provide your email address to subscribe. For e.g. [email protected]

You may unsubscribe at any time using the link in our newsletter.