Ice storm knocks out power, violence at Albany High said to be out of control, Freihofers sold, alleged puppy-napping in Troy

Note: The Daily Gazette's website wasn't loading this morning.

Updated: 11:25 am

The ongoing ice storm has knocked out power for about 160,000 National Grid customers in the four core counties of the Capital Region (that figure is from National Grid's website this morning at 11:25 am). National Grid says it has 150 crews in the area working on repairs. [National Grid] [TU]

An anonymous Albany High School employee tells CBS6 that violence is out of control at the school. Among the incidents collected from police reports this school year: a teacher has been pushed to the ground and kicked, another teacher was punched repeatedly in the ribs, there was a three-on-one student beating, and two students hit another student in the back of the head with a padlock. [CBS6]

An anonymous source tells the TU that "ghost" parking tickets have been circulating in the City of Albany since the early 1990s -- and the stickers that marked a car as being eligible for the no-fine tickets were distributed by the Albany Police Officer's Union. Current police chief James Tuffey was president of the union in the early 90s, but he says he never knew about the stickers. [TU]

One upside to the slowing economy: the price of electricity and natural gas is falling. The price National Grid is charging for a kilowatt hour of electricity has dropped about 15 percent over the last year. [TU]

In an effort to thin out the tangle of local government in New York, Andrew Cuomo is proposing to give voters the power to dissolve towns, villages and taxing districts. [TU]

The Appellate Division of the state Supreme Court has suspended local attorney John Aretakis from practice for a year, saying he's engaged in "frivolous conduct." Aretakis has been involved in numerous clergy sex abuse suits against the Catholic Church. On Thursday he accused Albany bishop Howard Hubbard of trying to "muzzle" him. [TU] [Troy Record]

The company that owns Freihofers has been bought by a Mexican company called Grupo Bimbo SAB. The new owner says they don't expect any layoffs. [TU]

Three men in Troy have been arrested on charges they were involved in a puppy-napping. [Troy Record]

A guy in Queensbury is one of the people leading the effort to question whether Barack Obama is a natural born citizen (and thus ineligible to be president). The evidence is pretty strong that Obama is, though. [Saratogian]

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