Cuomo to float plan for free college tuition, how local police are trained, focus on Albany demolitions, first baby of the year

Free state college tuition proposal
Andrew Cuomo is scheduled to announce a plan Tuesday that would offer free tuition to SUNY and CUNY schools for students from middle- and low-income households. [NYT]

Cuomo vetoes plan for state to pick up costs of legals services for the poor
On Saturday Andrew Cuomo vetoed a bill that would have eventually had the state pick up the cost from counties for providing legal services to for low-income people. Pat Fahy, who represents Albany in the Assembly, was the sponsor of the bill -- she said remains "fully committed" to working toward a deal on the issue. [NYDN] [TU]

Minimum wage increase
As of New Year's Eve, New York State's minimum wage is now $9.70 per hour (up from $9) around Upstate, and higher downstate. The increase is part of a schedule that eventually will raise the minimum $15 downstate and $12.50 (or more) upstate. The Cuomo admin says it's put together a task force to provide information and enforcement for the increase. [NYS DOL] [TU]

Training police
A look at how the police academy that trains the large majority of local police officers has changed its curriculum -- and why the Albany Police Department created its own police academy in order to focus more on community policing. [TU+]

Albany demolitions
Albany city auditor Leif Engstrom says his office is looking into why there were double the number of emergency demolitions during 2016 compared to 2015. [TU+]

Fight over zoning for apartments near SUNY Poly
The Albany County Planning Board has released an explanation for why it rejected the city of Albany's bid to rezone land along Sandidge Way (formerly Loughlin Street) to allow a multi-building residential project next to SUNY Poly. [TU]

Watervliet plea for Troy police unit
Watervliet's police chief has sent a letter to Troy officials noting concern about the elimination of the TPD Emergency Response Team because of budget cuts -- the special unit also responds to situation in surrounding municipalities. [Troy Record]

Deciding fate of Clifton Park land
Advocates pushing for undeveloped land in the Clifton Park town center owned by the Shen school district to become a park -- instead of being sold for development -- say they have enough signatures to prompt a public vote on the sale. [TU+] [Daily Gazette]

Nott Street closure
Nott Street at Erie Boulevard in Schenectady will be closed for the next month for the replacement of a railroad bridge. [Daily Gazette]

Solar power
+ A Florida company is proposing to build a solar power facility in Selkirk that would produce enough power for roughly 1,300 homes. [TU]
+ Rotterdam is working toward new rules for roof-mounted and ground-mounted solar panels, as well as commercial solar energy production facilities. [Daily Gazette]

Responding to swastika vandals
Residents of Esperance in Schoharie County have been working to remove swastikas painted around the village overnight Saturday to Sunday. [Daily Gazette]

Unexpected delivery
A Valatie woman says she was expected a delivery of toys -- and got seven pounds of pot instead. [TWCN]

Snow wedding
Visit Albany, for all your snow wedding needs. [TU]

First baby
Amanah Santos was the first Capital Region baby born in 2017, at 12:01 New Year's Day at Bellevue.

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