Big fire in Green Island, Albany school board asks for pay freeze, 9th DWI arrest for woman

There was a huge fire at the R.K. Freedman scrap yard in Green Island yesterday evening. The building that caught fire is an old railroad building that dates back to the 1870s -- it was currently being used for office space. There was a fire "as big as a football field" at the scrap yard this past fall. At the time, Green Island's fire chief said they're called to the site about three times a years for fires. [Troy Record] [TU] [Fox23] [YNN] [Troy Record 2010] [TU 2010]

A former Troy city council candidate alleged a city councilman John Brown intended to forge voters' signatures on absentee ballots in 2009, according to an affidavit filed in court this week. The councilman denies ever saying would do so. Democratic elections commissioner Edward G. McDonough and city councilman Michael LoPorto have already been indicted as part of the investigation into alleged voter fraud. The special prosecutor in the case says has not ruled out more indictments. [Troy Record] [TU] [Troy Record]

The Albany school board approved a motion asking district employees for a pay freeze, and approved an extension of the contract for superintendent Raymond Colucciello. A charter school advocacy group had been running radio spots criticizing the school board for what the org says was a "sneaky vote" to extend Colucciello's contract ahead of a possible superintendent salary cap. But the district says Colucciello contract is being extended at the rate of $170k/year -- $5k less than the proposed cap limit. The advocacy group shares connections with the Brighter Choice Foundation, whose non-profit status is now being questioned because of the huge signs it hung on school buildings criticizing Albany's city treasurer.. [YNN] [CBS6] [TU] [Fox23] [WNYT] [TU]

Brian Stratton's last day as mayor of Schenectady will be April 3. [Daily Gazette]

Sheldon Silver's latest inscrutable action: his position on the extension of the income surcharge for people who make $200k or more. [TU]

Albany police say a 90-year-old woman was held at knife point, tied up, and then robbed at her West Hill home -- the second time it's happened to her in two weeks. She says her entire life savings was stolen. [TU] [WNYT] [Fox23]

Schenectady police say they arrested a woman for DWI who's already been convicted 8 times of driving while intoxicated. [TU]

Troy police say they were able to track down a suspect in a serious car-on-bike crash on the Menands Bridge last month thanks to some old-fashioned police work. [Troy Record]

The former Shen elementary school teacher convicted of abusing young boys has been granted visitation with his own son at prison. [Saratogian]

Albany police distributed a surveillance cam grab of the man they allege robbed the Key Bank at Washington and Lark Thursday morning. [YNN]

The Saratoga County DA now figures a former member of the Wilton Elks club stole more than $170k from the org -- and spent some of the money on scented candles and king crab legs. [Saratogian] [Daily Gazette]

The Troy city council has approved the sale of the Marshall Ray building in North Central to the developer of the Harmony Mills Lofts. [Troy Record]

The Clifton Park town board is moving toward a law that would require planning board approval of residential solar panel arrays. [TU]

Residents of Albany's Park South neighborhood say they're worried about the size of a planned development for student housing in the neighborhood. [TU]

Students at Slingerlands Elementary school are literally on the ball. [WNYT]

The high school in Whitehall has a bobsled team. [CBS6]


Here's Video I took of the fire

About the DWI woman:
"She was ordered to serve four months in the county jail, a sentence that was served on weekends"

Wait, you can do that? Really? That's incredibly bizarre. And how the heck does she still have a valid driver's license?
Rehab+no driving>weekends in jail.

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