FEMA distributing aid throughout region, Lark Tavern expansion approved, jewelry store chain hit twice in two days, bear sighting in North Greenbush

FEMA has distributed more than $40 million in recovery money to New Yorkers affected by Irene -- though the average award has been a little more than $5,000. FEMA teams have been going door-to-door in Schoharie County and other spots that were especially hard hit. Aid groups in Schoharie County say the need from flood victims is ongoing, and supplies are often distributed as fast they come in. [TU] [YNN] [Daily Gazette]

The Senate and House haven't worked out a deal yet to replenish funding for FEMA, which is running out of money. [TU]

The state Department of Health says it's seen an increase in calls about mosquitos since Irene. And the Columbia County Department of Health reports a crow with West Nile was found there. The cold weather forecasted for the next few days is expected to knock down the mosquito population. [Daily Gazette] [Fox23] [TU]

Wilton, Clifton Park and Ballston have stopped using water from the Saratoga County water system because of increased levels of a chlorine byproduct. The county water authority has been looking at the problem since at least last month. [Daily Gazette] [Daily Gazette]

Albany's zoning board of appeals has given the go ahead to the expansion of the Lark Tavern. The operator of "Flo's Lark Tavern" says he could open by November. [YNN] [TU]

The suicide crisis center opened in Schenectady following the suicides of four teen girls is slated to close because of a lack of funds. [Daily Gazette]

UAlbany says the alleged camera incident in an academic building's bathroom involved a mobile phone being held under a stall -- not a hidden camera, as originally reported. [YNN] [TU]

Derrick C. Smith, the man accused of an execution-style shooting outside a Schenectady bar in June 2010. has taken a plea deal. In an odd twist, Smith had gotten a jury summons for his own trial. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

There were opening arguments yesterday in the trial of Joseph McElheny, the Troy man accused of killing his baby daughter last year. [Troy Record]

Two Glennpeter Jewelry stores were robbed this week. A manager ran down the suspect who allegedly hit the Colonie Center store Wednesday. Police say they second robbery -- at a store on Central Ave early Thursday morning -- appears to be a professional hit, possibly by the same group that robbed the company's Halfmoon store earlier this year. The company's owner says the cost of replacing the broken display cases from the second robbery may be more than loss of the jewelry. [Troy Record] [WNYT] [Fox23]

Schenectady police say they've arrested a man for allegedly robbing the Trustco Bank at State and Brandywine on Saturday (map). [TU]

This week's Democratic primary for Albany County legislature seats stirred the pot on a long running feud and could have implications for the Albany mayoral race in 2013. [TU]

There was as a bear sighting in North Greenbush this week, which apparently is not too unusual. [TU]

The pumpkin crop in New York State experienced "significant losses due to Irene." [TU]

The company that makes the Saratoga Chip brand potato chips is looking to expand. [Saratogian]

After a slow year, condo sales in Saratoga are reportedly picking up again. [Post-Star]

A gym is Glens Falls is generating electricity from its spinning classes. [WNYT]

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