Albany police chief pick praised, another budget extender, fatal stabbing in Troy, former RPI employees allege age discrimination

Reaction to Jerry Jennings' pick of Steve Krokoff for Albany police chief seems to be generally positive. Multiple members of the common council have expressing their support, praising Krokoff for his efforts to push the department toward more community policing. The council must still sign off on the pick -- council president Carolyn McLaughlin says she expects "unanimous confirmation." Jennings said this weekend that Krokoff's performance as acting chief prompted the pick. [TU] [YNN] [CBS6] [WTEN] [Fox23] [WNYT]

There's another state budget extender up for a vote today in the legislature. The latest bill includes a big increase in taxes on tobacco -- taxes on cigarettes would go from $2.75 to $4.35/pack, the highest in the nation. On Friday, the legislature passed a bunch of budget bills -- but the "big ugly" cuts to education aid still remain. The state budget is now more than 11 weeks late. [TU] [AP/Troy Record] [CFTFK] [TU] [YNN]

Troy police say a man was fatally stabbed near a bike path early Sunday morning in North Central (map). [Fox23] [TU]

Albany police say a man was shot in front of his house Friday night in the South End (map). [Fox23] [WTEN]

There have 10 muggings in Albany's Center Square neighborhood over the last five weeks. The latest: five people were charged with mugging two women on Lancaster Street last week (map). [WNYT] [TU]

There's some criticism that Andrew Cuomo's gubernatorial campaign doesn't have enough diversity. Over the weekend, Cuomo said state government has deteriorated and praised the government under his father. [TU] [WAMC/State of Politics]

State Senate Democratic conference majority leader John Sampson says the bid information he gave to Aqueduct racino bidder AEG was not confidential -- though there are some doubts about that. [AP/TU] [NYT City Room]

Another project slowed by the state budget crunch: the restoration work on the roof of the state Capitol building. Jack McEneny called the funding hold-up for the job "penny-wise and pound-foolish." [Fox23] [TU]

An attorney for the boater involved in the boat-on-kayak collision that killed a Troy man on Lake George is arguing the kayaker was at a fault. [WNYT]

Seven former RPI employees have filed suit against the school alleging age discrimination. They argue the 2008 layoffs at the school disproportionately targeted older employees. [Troy Record] [TU]

A Troy city employee has filed preliminary paperwork for a lawsuit over allegations he was outed as a whistleblower in an investigation of drug use by city employees. That investigation came up publicly when the head of the Troy police officers' union mentioned it during a public meeting. [TU] [Troy Record]

George McNally, the Albany police detective who pleaded guilty to DWI hitting parked cars while driving home from an Albany bar in 2009, has retired. [TU]

The City of Schenectady is trying to save money by consolidating all of its health plans under one plan. [Daily Gazette $]

A group is trying to organize a new charter school in Schenectady. [TU]

Chuck Schumer is pushing legislation that would prohibit sex offenders from working jobs such as karate instructor or clown. [AP/Fox23]

Scott Murphy's pushing legislation that would make it easier to place online horse race bets using a credit card. [TU]

Roy McDonald is pushing for a "Veterans Bill of Rights" for New York State. [Saratogian]

A group in Schenectady is trying to bring healthier food options to areas of the city that don't have a supermarket. [Daily Gazette $]

TV8 is expanding its signal include areas as far south as Malta. [Post-Star]

Collins Park in Scotia is now largely free of geese, thanks to a boarder collie. [Daily Gazette $]

Comments

I'm appalled, but not surprised, by the news of the fatal stabbing on or near the Troy bike path.

I travel that route often, though never at night, and I frequently encounter menacing behavior in the two-three blocks at the beginning of the trail where this incident occurred.

We do not know all the details yet. And I realize that this stabbing could have occurred elsewhere.

However, this incident appears to be somehow related to the adjacent Martin Luther King "Apartments." Which gives further reason to rethink the practice of cramming people into low-income housing projects.

Housing projects are unnatural monocultures. Cities like Troy used to deploy a more healthy, integrated fabric of housing options for people of different income levels. It is far more beneficial for everyone in a community when low-income housing options are integrated with middle and high-income housing options. That earlier type of living arrangement fosters more "eyes on the street" as Jane Jacobs once said. It also encourages people of all walks of life to interact with and get to know each other. It's always better to know your neighbors because we can all learn from and help each other.

On the other hand, vast tracts of middle-income suburban developments, low-income housing projects, and exclusive gentrified city neighborhoods are all monocultures that conflict with the natural order of urbanism. Psychological isolation, violence, and xenophobia are just some of the unhealthy symptoms that arise when we segregate -- and self-segregate-- our built environment.

It's time we come to a new consensus about these things.

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