Federal charges dropped in fatal Schenectady arson case, push for earlier last call in Saratoga, Spector's closing after almost a century

Federal prosecutors have dropped all charges against Robert A. Butler, the man who had been accused of starting the fire that killed David Terry and three of his children in Schenectady last year. The US Attorney's office says it will continue the investigation of the case. "Those with knowledge of the case" tell the Times Union investigators are now focused on different man who's alleged to have sent a text message threatening to kill Terry. [Daily Gazette] [US DOJ] [TU]

A few more details of the death of Richard Englander, the elderly man Albany police say was killed last: Sara Moore, a home health aide, has pleaded not guilty to a second-degree murder charge. Albany police say Moore had tried to cash one of Englander's checks at a local bank, the bank called Englander, and there was an altercation -- the bank called police after hearing the struggle. APD says Englander suffered blunt force trauma to his head and cuts on his head and neck. [TU] [News10] [WNYT]

The state Department of Environmental Conservation has reversed an earlier decision and will now require the company hoping to build a heating facility for transferring shipments of crude oil at the Port of Albany must follow guidelines for informing the nearby neighborhood of its plans. [TU] Earlier: Why Albany is playing a major role in the transportation of oil, and why that concerns some people.

An unreleased report evaluating the state's response to Superstorm Sandy obtained by the Times Union criticizes the Cuomo admin for setting up a state command center in Manhattan, instead of working from the long-established bunker at the Harriman State Office Campus, stretching the state's the emergency management staff. [TU]

One of the owners of the Saratoga Casino and Raceway has taken a look at other potential Capital Region casino sites as part of possible consideration of a Plan B. [Capital New York] Earlier: Capital Region casino site odds

The Saratoga Springs public safety commissioner is again pushing for an earlier last call at bars in Saratoga County. [Daily Gazette]

The chairmen of Troy's ethics commission say the panel will be discussing the appearance of city councilman Bob Doherty at a State Liquor Authority meeting related to Kokopellis. [Troy Record]

As the Saratoga County Water Authority faces an upgrade that may cost as much as $10 million, its chairman says the authority isn't breaking even in part because GlobalFoundries isn't buying the amount of water expected. [TU]

Troy mayor Lou Rosamilia was #46 on the city employee list for compensation in 2013, due in large part to overtime in the fire and police departments. [TU]

Troy is hoping for $9 million from the feds to help rebuild the crumbling sea wall along the Hudson River. [TU]

Watervliet police say a man arrested for allegedly robbing a Bank of America in the city Friday has also allegedly admitted to knocking over the First Niagara in Troy on Wednesday. [TU]

State Police say two brothers stopped on Route 787 in Cohoes last week for speeding tried to impersonate... each other. [NYSP]

Colonie's town attorney wants to move the alleged deer-hunting-at-night case against Paul Mahan, the son of supervisor Paula Mahan, to Watervliet because of conflicts of interest. [TU]

From the Annals of D'oh!: The Warren County Sheriff's Office says it appears to men managed to flip a pickup truck on frozen Lake George while doing doughnuts in the vehicle. [Post-Star]

An Albany County epidemiologist said the child recently admitted to Albany Med with measles appears to have picked up the infection outside the country. [TU]

In Schenectady there's some friction between landlords and tenants over who should -- and can -- pay for bedbug extermination. [Daily Gazette]

Scotia's mayor says the village is no longer interested in consolidating its court operations with the town of Glenville. [Daily Gazette]

The Albany Devils are struggling to draw fans to their games at the TU Center. [TU]

These guys have a better backyard than you do. [TU]

Ravenous in downtown Saratoga Springs has new owners. [Saratogian]

Spector's Clothing is closing after 95 years in business. [TU]

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