Not guilty plea in deaths of two women, Hoosick Falls board tables settlement offer, GE engineer held up by immigration order back in Niskayuna

Arrest in connection with deaths of two women
Edward Mero of Albany pleaded not guilty to two counts of second-degree murder in the deaths of two women: Shelby Countermine, whose body was found on land owned by the Albany Water Department in Coeymans in May 2015, six months after she was last seen in Schenectady; and Megan Cunningham, whose body was found after a house fire on Arcadia Ave in Albany in January of 2013. State Police said Monday it was only recently that they felt they had enough information for an arrest. Mero's attorney, Cheryl Coleman, pointed to leaks to the media ahead of the indictment being unsealed and criticized the prosecution's case: "[W]hat they did is they clearly opened an investigation where they had two weak cases, put them together and hoped to strengthen them both that way." [News10] [WNYT] [TWCN] [TU]

Hoosick Falls
The Hoosick Falls village board voted to table the proposed $1 million settlement with Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics and Honeywell International over PFOA contamination of the water supply. The meeting featured many speakers against the settlement. Resident Brian Bushner, who's running unopposed for a village trustee spot: "People here deserve better. We deserve to have our bills paid, but we also deserve not to give up our future." [News10] [WNYT] [TU]

Company records: State Senator Brad Hoylman, a Democratic member of the Senate's Environmental Conservation Committee, is pushing for the legislature to release to the public records subpoenaed from three companies involved in PFOA contamination of water supplies in Rensselaer County. [TU]

Missing man in Poestenkill Gorge
The Troy police and fire departments continued to search for man who fell into the Poestenkill Gorge over the weekend has not been seen since. Among the tools used Monday: a drone. [Troy Record] [TU]

Bomb threats against JCCs
After another round of bomb threats against Jewish community centers around the country -- including a handful downstate -- Andrew Cuomo said he's directing State Police "to work with our federal and local law enforcement partners to investigate these threats and apprehend those responsible." [NPR] [Cuomo admin]

Labor rights
A look at the legal fight over whether farm workers in New York State should be able to organize, and whether international human rights law could play a role in the decision. [TU]

Correctional officers
The union that represents the state's correctional officers has voted down the contract on which there had been a tentative agreement with the Cuomo admin. [TU]

Sanctuary cities
There was a group of people back at the Schenectady City Council meeting Monday pushing for Schenectady to become a sanctuary city. [Daily Gazette]

Back home
Sirin Hamsho -- the GE engineer from Niskayuna (and Syrian native of French citizenship) who was stuck in Qatar with her children during the implementation of the Trump administration immigration order -- is back home, according to a status on her Facebook page. [Daily Gazette]

Regeneron
The East Greenbush town board approved the plan for Regeneron to build a new warehouse, a project expected to include 100 new jobs. [TU]

Spikes
How Bethlehem police used a spike strip to end a recent car chase. [TU]

Dairy Circus
The owners of the Dairy Circus in Scotia -- destroyed last year by a fire -- are planning to rebuild. [Daily Gazette]

Heinrich Medicus
Remembering RPI physicist and local philanthropist Heinrich Medicus, who died over the weekend at age 98. [TU]

Stuff going on today

Science on Tap
A new drink-and-discuss series -- Science on Tap -- starts up at the Albany Pump Station with a panel of UAlbany professors talking about "what science is, why it is important, why it should be funded, and if it should inform public policy": atmospheric scientist Kristen Corbosiero, biologist Gary Kleppel, sociologist Beth Popp Berman, and anthropologist Adam Gordon. Tuesday 7 pm -- free admission

Music: Colony House at Lucky Strike
Indie rock. With: Deep Sea Diver. 7 pm -- $15

Music: Mardi Gras Soiree at Parish Public House
With two sets of music from Hartley's Encore. Tuesday 8 pm -- free admission

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