GlobalFoundries continues to make unhappy noises, Stratton trieds to defend chief's overtime, rumors of more Chipotles and Fresh Markets

The Empire State Development Corporation has released more than $8.5 million for infrastructure at the Luther Forest tech park. The money was originally slated to go to the org that runs the tech park, but the state instead redirected the money to the Town of Stillwater in order to "allow for the completion of these critical infrastructure projects at the campus and the GlobalFoundries project to move forward." The ESDC recently moved to take over the park after GloFo raised concerns about infrastructure delays at the site. The company is now making noises that the delays, and issues related to taxes and inspections, could lead it look elsewhere if it decides to build two more chip fabs. [Post-Star] [Saratogian] [TU]

Andrew Cuomo -- in his role at state attorney general -- announced two lawsuits against high profile hedge fund manager Steven Rattner, as part of the investigation into the "pay to play" scandal with the state pension fund. Cuomo said Rattner "is in many ways the worst example of this fraud." A Rattner spokesman alleged that Cuomo has been spinning the press on the case through "continual improper leaks." Rattner headed the federal task force that re-organized GM and Chrysler. [TU] [State of Politics] [NYT]

Former state DEC commissioner Pete Grannis got a hero's reception a state assembly committee yesterday, with one assemblyman saying Grannis was "fired for telling the truth" in a leaked memo about the consequences of job cuts at the agency. The new acting head of DEC also testified, saying that two years of jobs cuts at agency will result in slower responses. [WNYT] [TU] [YNN]

Brian Stratton says he instituted the now-cancelled overtime pay plan for Schenectady fire chief Robert Farstad, without the consent of the city council, to "provide equity and fairness to the chief." Stratton said he intended to give the chief $117,000 over the next year because he said that Farstad wasn't in line to get what he was actually owed because of the setup of the pension system. One city council member called it "a dirty, secret deal and nothing more than pension padding." [WNYT] [Daily Gazette] [CBS6] [WTEN]

North Greenbush's town board approved a budget that includes no tax increase -- with the town supervisor voting against it. [Troy Record]

The Niskayuna town board approved a budget that includes an almost 3 percent tax increase. [Daily Gazette]

Watervliet's proposed city budget includes a 1.5 percent tax increase. [TU]

A bid by the org that backs the Brighter Choice charter schools to use tax-free bonds to re-organize to reshuffle the schools' finances has highlighted the ongoing argument over existence of the charter schools. [TU]

Former Schenectady cop John Lewis was sentenced to 16 months in federal prison for illegally having a gun. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

A small fire in the facade of the tower at the SUNY administration building in downtown Albany yesterday prompted the building to be evacuated for the day. Of course, this follows a recent flood at the building. Maintenance workers are now on the lookout for locusts. [Fox23] [TU]

All that's left at the long-fought-over Jack's Auto Parts site in Troy is dirt. [Troy Record]

Both Chipotle and Fresh Market are rumored for a spot in a Bethlehem. [TU]

RPI's hockey coach was suspended for one game after he brought a laptop to a post-game press conference to show reporters video of a disputed goal. [WNYT]

This year's holiday tree at the ESP, which came from Guilderland, is now up. The Capitol isn't getting a tree this year because of budget cutbacks. [WTEN] [Fox23]

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I had the pleasure of experiencing protected bike lanes in Montreal recently. It really made for a fast, efficient way to move both bike & car traffic. As a biker, it was easy to see how to navigate a busy road, and it was nice to have a bit of buffer/safety from traffic (or just knowing that the possibility of a car swerving in to you was incredibly low because of these features). As a driver, it was nice to see all of the bikes in one area, so that you don't have the errant biker who decides to blow through most of the traffic signals the wrong way down a street.

Pizza o'clock

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