Legislature passes another extender and higher taxes on tobacco, Phish scene reportedly calmer this year at SPAC, Troy businessman indicted for alleged Ponzi scheme

The state legislature passed two emergency budget extenders last night, keeping the government open for another week. One of the bills included a tax increase on tobacco products -- the state tax on a pack of cigarettes will go from $2.75 to $4.35. The bill also includes a provision that would attempt to collect taxes on cigarettes sold on Native American lands -- a Seneca leader said recently such a move would be considered "an act of war" (when the state tried this in the 90s, a group of Native Americans shut down the Thruway in western New York). The other budget extender was an appropriations bill -- Roy McDonald was the sole Republican state senator to vote in favor. The bill was passed after the deadline for ensuring state employee paychecks will go out on time, so some state workers could see a delay. [NYT] [TU] [Daily Politics] [Fox23] [Buffalo News] [WNYT] [WTEN] [AP/TU]

A Watervilet man has charged in the stabbing deaths of his child and former girlfriend in Bath, New York. An order of protection had been issued against Bryan Ashline in Watervliet last year after a string of domestic incidents. He had been a star basketball player at Watervliet High School. [Fox23] [TU] [Troy Record]

Albany police say two men were shot in West Hill last night (map). [WTEN]

State park police say they arrested 68 people at the Phish concerts over the weekend at SPAC. The crowd was reportedly calmer this year, compared to years past. [Saratogian] [TU]

The hearing officer presiding over the City of Schenectady's attempt fire eight police officers has recommend suspension -- not termination -- for an officer accused of getting in a bar brawl. [TU] [Daily Gazette $]

Financial consultant Matthew J. Ryan has been indicted by a federal grand jury on 10 felony counts related to an alleged Ponzi scheme he's accused of running out of his downtown Troy office. [TU] [Troy Record]

The Albany common council will have two public committee meetings related to the nomination of Steve Krokoff for police chief. [TU]

The Schenectady city council will be forgoing Monday meetings this summer to go out and personally investigate dilapidated buildings. [Daily Gazette $]

Cohoes police say three teens have been arrested for the recent rash of graffiti around town, some of it anti-Semitic. The teens have pleaded not guilty. [Troy Record] [Fox23]

The mixed martial arts industry is continuing to press the legislature to legalize the sport in New York State. [WTEN]

After a fatal wreck this weekend at Route 40 and Fogarty Rd, residents say the Speigeltown intersection is notoriously dangerous. [YNN]

The new air conditioning system at a Colonie town library has been held up -- by the FAA. [TU]


I don't see why the State would just put up toll booths outside the Indian reservations and check the cars as they leave the Nation. they want to be a Sovereign government, then lets do the same thing the Feds do at the Canadian border. Watch the tax dollars flow in!!!!

Gee, I wonder if there's any correlation between the calmer Phish crowd and the relatively small size of the police presence (compared to the DMB show).

If the Seneca want to charge a toll through that section of the thruway, more power to 'em. They can also mow the grass, pick up trash, fill potholes, and do whatever maintenance their stretch of highway requires.

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