Funding for buyout of homes in flood-prone areas, investigation of alleged ammo sale to principal in school parking lot, 60 years on the job

The buyout of more than 1,100 homes in flood-prone areas of the New York State following damage from Irene and Lee will cost $194 million -- 25 percent of that total was to be a non-federal match, but the Cuomo admin announced Monday the state will be using a portion of the block grant it got from the feds for disaster recovery to cover the portion. The money will enable homeowners to get the full pre-flood assessed values. [Cuomo admin] [TU] [Daily Gazette]

State comptroller Tom DiNapoli reports the state pension fund hit an all-time high at the end of the fiscal year (March): $160.4 billion, with a rate of return of more than 10 percent. That will help local municipalities crunched by increased pension contributions -- eventually; contributions are calculated on a five-year average. The fund took a big hit in 2008 and 2009. [NYS OSC] [TU] [NYS OSC]

The state Assembly passed the Farmworkers Fair Labor Practices Act Monday, though the bill hasn't been successful in many attempts over the years in the state Senate. The bill includes provisions for overtime and collective bargaining rights. The bill is opposed by the NY Farm Bureau. There was a rally for the bill outside the Capitol Monday. [TU] [open.senate.gov] [State of Politics] [News10/AP]

A third teen -- 17-year-old Ravenal Gregory Dunbar -- has pleaded guilty in connection with the robbery and fatal stabbing of Takim Smith in a Troy apartment in February. Dunbar faces a 10-year sentence for the robbery that got him $10. [Troy Record] [TU]

The mother-in-law of the man the Albany County Sheriff's Office says was found dead in his cell at the Albany County jail after he hanged himself says she'd like to hire an independent medical examiner because she doesn't believe he would have committed suicide. [TU]

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Albany County comptroller Mike Conners recommended to the county legislature a two-step plan that could end with selling the county nursing home. Funding for the nursing home only extends through June -- and Conners says he could face stopping payroll for the home if the county exec and legislature can't work out a plan. [TU] [Troy Record]

Cohoes police say they're looking into an alleged purchase of ammunition in the parking lot of Cohoes High School by the school's principal. There apparently was no gun and the alleged sale didn't break any laws -- though it did violate the district's code of conduct.

The man accused of threatening a Skidmore student's life in March has pleaded guilty to felony first-degree coercion. He faces prison time, mental health counseling, and an order to stay away from the woman for 8 years. The threatening messages prompted a lockdown at Skidmore before the man was arrested in New Jersey. [Saratogian] [TU] [News10]

The latest turn in the drama of the Princetown town government: the clerk, justice, and court clerk have filed a complaint with the state alleging gender discrimination. [Daily Gazette]

The state is moving to clean up a contaminated former dry cleaner site in Cohoes. [TU]

A developer says the federal sequester is holding up funding that could move a Northway Exit 3 project forward -- and surrounding development. [TU]

Said a woman in Schoharie, still getting back on its feet after the Irene flooding, to the Times Union: "Tell people we are not victims anymore, we are survivors." [TU]

Farther afield: in Johnstown there was a monthlong investigation into who stole a coffee maker (and there was an arrest). [Daily Gazette]

The new Schmaltz Brewing Co. brewery in Clifton Park officially opened Monday. [Saratogian]

A nurse has worked for Albany Memorial Hospital for 60 years. [Troy Record]

An essay about Roy McDonald's vote on the Marriage Equality Act by a high school student Indiana won a national essay contest. [Daily Gazette]

Albany High School senior June Criscione got a perfect score on the ACT (and almost perfect score on the SAT), is one of 141 US Presidential Scholars, and is going to Harvard in the fall. [TU]

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Recent Comments

They should turn Maiden Lane into a stepped pedestrian street, like they have all over Europe. We don't need to reinvent the wheel, they do steep small streets pretty well across the pond, let's look for some precedents... Human scaled lighting is critical too, that goes for the whole city. And we don't need paint on the road, just signage perpendicular to the flow of traffic at the bridge entrance. I also echo the call for basic, ongoing maintenance to our current infrastructure. How about some weed removal in sidewalks, etc?

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