Judges approve new Congressional districts for New York, new head of RensCo jail a first for Capital Region, new airlines express interest in ALB, military dog to retire with former handler

It's the first day of spring. Today's forecast: sunny and 78. [NWS]

A panel of federal judges has approved the lines for new Congressional districts for New York State (interactive map). The lines, drawn up by a federal magistrate, had been criticized for not protecting incumbents -- to which the judges essentially said, "too bad." The greater Capital Region will now be included in three districts. Noted: the cities of Albany, Saratoga Springs, Schenectady, and Troy are now all in the same district (NY-20 / currently rep'ed by Paul Tonko). [NYT] [NYT] [State of Politics] [TU] [Saratogian]

Irked by the new "Tier VI" pension reform, CSEA says it's decided to "immediately suspend all state political endorsements and contributions" in order to "re-evaluate our political relationships and make judgments about the criteria we use in determining who has earned and deserves our support." The public employees union has been one of the bigger donors to the state legislators' campaigns. Sheldon Silver was typically unimpressed with the situation. [CSEA] [TU] [State of Politics]

An org that represents county governments is pushing for the state to give counties the power to set their own sales tax rates without approval from the state legislature. [Saratogian]

David Cook -- the Glens Falls man accused of sexually assaulting a 7-week-old baby -- has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him. Court documents include statements allegedly made by Cook in which he describes how he had abused the child after he'd been drinking. He also reportedly wrote to the baby's mother apologizing, and asking her to stay with him. [WNYT] [YNN] [Post-Star]

Schenectady police say an armed man robbed the Dollar General store on Broadway in Bellevue last night (map). A witness apparently followed the man and reported to the SPD that he entered a house a block away (map).Police surrounded the house, but didn't find the man. [YNN] [Daily Gazette] [TU]

Schenectady police say a man was stabbed near the old YMCA downtown late yesterday afternoon (map). They're looking for the suspect. The victim is living at YMCA facility. [WTEN] [Fox23] [Daily Gazette]

Candidates -- Republican and Democrat -- are lining up for the newly created 46th state Senate district, which stretches across the southwestern side of the Capital Region. [Daily Gazette]

Troy mayor Lou Rosamilia is asking the city council to approve higher-than-budget salaries for a few members of his administration -- salaries the city has already been paying for almost three months. [Troy Record] [TU]

The new chief of corrections for the Rensselaer County Jail is Ruth Vibert. She's the first woman to direct a county jail in the Capital Region and just the fourth statewide. [Troy Record] [TU]

The city of Schenectady is looking at using federal money to convert some of the cities many two-family homes in one-family homes. [Daily Gazette]

Virgin America and Frontier are apparently interested in flying out of ALB -- but JetBlue is still cool to the idea. [TU]

Some officials in Saratoga County are pushing for the Saratoga County Homestead in Providence -- "the haunted hospital" -- to be sealed or torn down because it's a draw for young people. [Daily Gazette]

A military dog will get to retire with his former handler in Rockland County -- both were wounded in Iraq while detecting IEDs -- after Chuck Schumer leaned on the Marines and Air Force to re-unite the two partners, according to the senator's office. [Chuck Schumer]

Comments

The beginning of the Gazette article about the Saratoga County Homestead mentions:

"The January death of a high school student has prompted town firefighters to call for the old county infirmary— known in some youthful circles as the “haunted hospital” — to be sealed up or torn down...."

I've searched the news for other articles related to this incident, but I can't find anything. Anyone else know what's up with that? I don't remember hearing about a death there.

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I don't think that's what's meant by "serpentine belt replacement".

Albany is expanding its pay-by-plate parking meters and mobile parking payment

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Stuff to do this weekend

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The Capital Region's home ownership rate ticked upward last year for the first time in a while

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No. No. No. No. No. No. No.

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Albany City Hall carillon concerts

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