Barack Obama makes stops in western and central New York, head of Troy Uncle Sam found in Mechanicville, where the bison roam

Barack Obama made stops in Buffalo, Rochester, and Syracuse Thursday. At the stops he focused on the cost of college education and pitched his administration's plan to create a federal rating system for colleges. (Transcript from the president's speech at a Syracuse public high school.) Today the tour is scheduled to move on to Binghamton and Pennsylvania. [Buffalo News] [Rochester Democrat and Chronicle] [Syracuse Post-Standard] [TU] [NYT] [Post-Standard] [Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin]

Five firefighters were injured by falling bricks in a large house fire in Schenectady overnight -- they were treated and released. Fire officials say the apartment home, which housed two families, will be demolished later today. [YNN] [CBS6] [News10]

One firefighter was injured in a scrap metal yard fire in Rensselaer last night. [TU]

City of Schenectady employees have the highest average pay of any local public employees in the Capital Region, according to a report by the Empire Center. The highest-paid local public official in Capital Region: psychiatrist with the Rensselaer County Mental Health Department. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

Schenectady school district superintendent Laurence Spring says poverty in his district "is the primary barrier that our kids have." [TU]

UAlbany School of Business Weekend MBA ad 2012 summer

The 14 year old Fort Edward police say was holding a shotgun when it fired and killed a 13 year old last summer has been charged with manslaughter and will be prosecuted as a juvenile. [WNYT] [Post-Star]

A Washington County man has been charged with manslaughter for an incident in which police say he tried to kill himself by driving into oncoming traffic, but ended up killing someone else instead. [Saratogian]

The Saratoga County man who was one of the first people in the state to face charges under the NY SAFE Act has taken a plea deal that substitutes the SAFE Act charges for misdemeanors. The man was accused of unlawfully selling an assault weapon, and doing so without a background check. [Daily Gazette] [Saratogain] [TU]

Rensselaer county legislature leaders are arguing that the plea deal offered to a former county department clerk accused of embezzling $200k -- which doesn't include jail time -- isn't stiff enough. [Troy Record]

The head of the Rensselaer County Sheriff's Office internal affairs department is suing several members of the sheriff's office and other county officials alleging discrimination and undue workplace stress. [Troy Record]

Glenville police say a fatal car crash earlier this month may have been caused by a driver assuming a light was green when it was not. [Daily Gazette]

Troy police say the missing head of the rainbow Uncle Sam statue was found in Mechanicville. Issue: the head can't be immediately returned because it needs to be held as evidence. [Troy Record] [TU]

A Schenectady man is accused of video recording woman in his bathroom using a camera disguised as a clock. [Daily Gazette]

The anti-gun violence group SNUG held a rally at the scene of a shooting in Albany's West Hill neighborhood last week. [YNN]

Lieutenant governor Bob Duffy pushed back on the idea that his recent purchase of a home from the head of business group was somehow improper: "It's very public. Nothing was hidden whatsoever." [TU]

Families of students in Troy's School 2 picked up the new uniforms that are part of an overhaul of the school. [TU] [Troy Record]

The breakaway bison herd in Schoharie County had its fourth day on the lam Thursday. [TU] [Daily Gazette]

Freedompalooza is this Saturday at the Altamont Fairgrounds. [TU]

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