One in five living in poverty in Albany, Schdy, Troy; pressure on Murphy from all sides, state running out of cash, North Greenbush kid gets lead role on Broadway

New York State's poverty rate is 14 percent, according to a report from the New York State Community Action Association. More than 20 percent of the people in Albany, Schenectady and Troy live in poverty. And about one third of children in those cities live in poverty. Of the four core Capital Region counties, Saratoga had the lowest poverty rate at 6.9 percent. The poverty line for a family of four is $22,000. [NYSCAA] [Daily Gazette $] [TU] [Troy Record] [YNN]

As David Paterson's World Turns The governor said yesterday that he did not try to convince Sherr-una Booker to drop her domestic violence case against David Johnson. Paterson also said Kirsten Gillibrand threw him under the bus when she said he should resign if the allegations against him turn out to be true. Also yesterday: Marissa Shorenstein, Paterson's press secretary, resigned. "Due to the circumstances that have led to my unwitting involvement in recent news stories, I can no longer do my job effectively," she wrote in her resignation statement. Translation: I didn't know what Paterson might really have been trying to do when he told me to get in touch with Sherr-una Booker. [AP/YNN] [Fox23] [NYT] [Daily Politics] [NYT March 1]

Raucci Trial Day 12 Deborah Gray testified that her family's house and cars were vandalized on multiple occasions after Steven Raucci accused her of writing an anonymous letter to unions officials complaining about his leadership. Gray also testified that a former friend told her that Raucci was going to "take care of things" after the former friend told Raucci about her friends with a former partner (an unexploded device was later found at the former partner's house). A former co-worker of Raucci also testified that his vehicles were vandalized after he filed a sexual harassment claim after Raucci played the "man game" with him. [TU] [Daily Gazette $] [WTEN] [YNN]

Ron Canestrari says talk of a cancelled racing season at Saratoga is a pressure ploy by NYRA. Roy McDonald and Tony Jordan have written a letter to David Paterson urging to review the already-existing bids for the Aqueduct racino (money from that deal was going to prop up racing in the state). [WTEN] [Saratogian]

The Schenectady man accused of killing two dogs and torturing another has pleaded guilty. The plea deal includes two years in prison. [YNN] [Daily Gazette $]

The Rensselaer County sheriff's office says two deputies saved a man as he was attempting suicide yesterday. The sheriff's office says the deputies were serving an eviction notice when they found the gas on and the man trying to hang himself. [TU] [Troy Record]

Scott Murphy is getting pressure from all sides on how he should vote on the healthcare reform bill. Both supporters and opponents of the bill rallied outside Murphy's Clifton Park office yesterday -- even though he wasn't there. Murphy said yesterday that he's still undecided. [TU] [YNN] [TU CapCon]

State comptroller Tom DiNapoli says the state is running out of money for the current budget year, again. He projects the state will have $2 billion less in cash than expected. [NYS OSC] [NYT]

Steve Levy, the Suffolk County exec, reportedly is switching from Democrat to Republican and will be jumping into the pool for governor. Levy he says he has a plan for the state -- a "Contract for New York." [NYT] [NYDN]

A group of state senators, including Neil Breslin, is pushing a plan that they say would de-politicize the state police superintendent's job. The measure will make the job a 10-year term. [TU] [WNYT] [YNN]

HMO premiums increased 17 percent in New York State over the last year, according to New York State Insurance Department. Among the four core Cap Region counties, Albany has the smallest average increase at almost 15 percent. [NYSID]

The City of Schenectady's lawyer projects the city will end up spending $1 million trying to fire four of its police officers. [Daily Gazette $]

A local lawn care company has been fined $500k by the state. [TU]

Schenectady High School is getting $6 million from the feds to put towards its efforts to get off the "persistently dangerous" list. [Fox23]

There's a $7 million plan for renovations at Albany High School. [TU]

A woman who lives in a mobile home near the Albany landfill says the city's trying to evict her because she's opposed the expansion of the dump. [TU]

A North Greenbush boy is taking over the lead role in the Broadway musical Billy Elliot. [TU]

Maggie's Gift Shop is moving from Watervliet to Latham this weekend. [Troy Record]


one day the news is the capital region is one of the best places to live (at least for the 18-24, well-educated set who can make a lot of money and live well here) and the next day the news is that more than 20% of the population in this area lives in poverty. not to mention the unbelievable mess our state is in - from the budget to our crashing and burning governor. it all makes my head hurt. i moved to albany in 1986, went to AHS, and left for college believing i would never come back. now i live in schenectady, due to circumstances beyond my control. i've seen the capital district struggle with revitalization for almost 25 years now and it just never seems to happen. and the constant saga of our corrupt and bankrupt government is beyond depressing. i constantly wonder what it will take to bring about true change and if it will ever really happen.

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