Paterson holding raises for state workers, police say parents let toddlers wander off, criticism of APD chief search

David Paterson says he's withholding the four percent raises that state workers were scheduled to get starting April 1. The administration is holding back the raises by not including funding for them in the next temporary budget extender -- it says the raises will proceed when the state has finalized budget. CSEA said that it will "have to take some sort of legal action because the Governor is breaking our contract." Paterson said earlier this week that the unions "want to avoid making the same sacrifices that everyone else is making." [NYT] [NYDN] [TU] [YNN] [Capitol Pressroom]

The state parks commissioner said yesterday that without funding in place, her office has to operate as if the 55 parks slated for closure will stay closed. The National Parks Service has notified the state that the parks closures could threaten money from the feds. The late state budget is holding up general maintenance work at all the state parks. [Daily Gazette $] [TU] [YNN]

Stillwater police say two parents have been charged with endangering the welfare of a child after their two toddlers allegedly wandered off -- into traffic. Police said the parents didn't know the kids were missing. Police say one child was found wearing only a diaper and the other didn't have shoes. [Saratogian] [Post-Star] [CBS6]

Two people died in a car wreck on Route 40 in Rensselaer County yesterday. State police say the car the two had been riding in was driving erratically and passing in no-passing zones before it hit a pick-up truck head on. The driver of the pick-up had minor injuries. [YNN] [CBS6] [TU] [Fox23]

The attorney general's office says it's found that many college sponsored health plans "leave students at risk while providing massive profits for insurance companies." It reports that many of the health plans collect much more in premiums than they pay out in benefits. [NYS AG] [NYT]

There might still be some fizz left in the soda tax. [YNN]

Alice Green, a member of the Albany police chief search committee, is criticizing the search process. She says the committee should have recommended just two (instead of four) candidates to Jerry Jennings. The mayor says he'll be meeting with the committee to get their input on Monday. [TU] [WTEN] [YNN]

Albany police say a man was shot in the leg in West Hill Wednesday night (map). [TU]

State police say a man stopped for DWI on Wednesday in Albany had 19 active suspensions on his license. And two kids in the car. [CBS6] [WNYT]

Saratoga Springs is lowering the towing-for-outstanding-tickets threshold to $350. [TU]

The leader of Ellis Medicine says its state mandated merger with Bellevue and St. Clare's has helped return its budget to the black. [TU]

Joe Bruno's attorney has requested Bruno's sentencing be postponed until the Supreme Court rules on a trio of theft of honest services cases. [Troy Record]

Troy Savings Bank Music Hall is apparently talking with the Egg and other venues about collaborating in some way to save money. [Troy Record]

A new private high school is opening in Schenectady this fall. [TU]

The worries about the racing industry in New York State are apparently hurting the market for horse farms in the area. [Post-Star]

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