Reaction to State of the State, rally in downtown Albany, more weird twists in Kathina trial, sewage might have ended up in vegetable compost, pet deer attacks man

Elected state leaders praised David Paterson for being direct about the state's situation in yesterday's State of the State speech. (They also apparently envy his memory.) But some said the speech was short on specifics. (The Record has put together an extensive compilation of reaction from interest groups and local elected leaders.) [Fox23] [Troy Record] [CapNews9] [Troy Record]

About 4,000 people got together in downtown Albany before the speech for a protest organized by the civil service unions. They turned out to oppose Paterson's proposed budget -- to the sounds of Twisted Sister. [Troy Record] [NYT]

After control of the state Senate passed to the Democrats yesterday, Dean Skelos' name was scratched off the door of the majority's office space. [Daily Politics] [TU]

Paterson's proposals for more research into renewable energy and efficiency could benefit the Capital Region. [Daily Gazette]

Another prosecution witness in the trial of Jermayne Timmons, the teen accused of firing the shot that killed Kathina Thomas, has testified that he had lied during his earlier testimony. The 15-year-old witness said on the stand yesterday that his dad told him to tell police he saw Timmons fire the shot. More weirdness: police arrested a man for harassing Thomas' mother at the trial and acting as if he was a member of her family. [TU] [TU] [Fox23]

A memo from Saratoga Springs' settlement with the state DEC over a string of environmental violations reports that raw sewage was spread at the city's compost facility -- which might have posed health hazards for the compost's use on vegetable gardens. The settlement has led to more squabbling between former city officials. [TU] [Saratogian] [Daily Gazette]

A clerk with the state Department of Health pleaded guilty yesterday to embezzling $40,000 from CSEA, for which she was a treasurer. [TU]

About 20 percent of the churches in the Albany Catholic Diocese are slated to be closed or merged, according to Bishop Howard Hubbard. There's speculation that six churches in Troy are on the list. [TU] [CapNews9]

A developer and the Schenectady zoning board are fighting over whether a new Wallgreen's should be allowed to go up in "a sea of asphalt." [Daily Gazette]

The Troy Library says a budget crunch is forcing it to close two branches. [Troy Record]

There were 159 patents awarded to people living in Albany during the last quarter of last year, according to an intellectual property law firm. [Biz Review]

A snowy owl that had taken up residence in downtown Albany, to the great interest of office workers, was killed this week by a parasite. [TU]

Police say a man was attacked by his pet deer this week in Rensselaer County. [Fox23]

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