Reaction to Senate Republican health plan, multiple households displaced in Albany fire, from Pakistan to Schenectady to a diploma

Senate Republican health care plan
New York reaction to the Senate version of the Republican health care legislation:
+ Chuck Schumer said the Senate plan is "meaner" than House version, playing on Donald Trump's earlier comments about the House version being "mean." [TU]
+ From a Kirsten Gillibrand statement: "The Senate bill presented today, which was crafted behind closed doors by 13 men, would fundamentally harm Americans young and old, do severe damage to a fragile economy, and bankrupt state governments across the country." [Gillibrand office]
+ The Senate plan includes the New York-specific provision backed by John Faso that would shift more than $2 billion in Medicaid costs from counties to the state, and he said doing so would relieve a burden from property tax payers. [TU]
+ A spokesman for Elise Stefanik says she's reviewing the legislation. [Press Republican]
+ From a Paul Tonko statement: "This bill will lead to historic drops in coverage and major increases in premiums for those who can least afford them." [Tonko office]

North Manning Blvd fire
Multiple buildings in a row of homes along North Manning Blvd caught fire Friday morning, displacing as many as 30 people. AFD chief Warren Abriel said the fire started in a vacant building and spread. Workers at the nearby Bimbo bakery (formerly Freihofer's) are being credited with noticing the fire and alerting residents of the homes to get out. [News10] [@JohnCraigWNYT] [Spectrum] [TU] [@EmilyMasters]

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Troy police drug unit
"City government and police sources" tell the Times Union that two members of the Troy police drug unit are back on duty because they were the ones who raised questions about an alleged attempted cover up of a warrantless search -- and one of them is the son of another member of the unit who's under review. [TU]

Alleged Schenectady murder-for-hire case
Authorities say the alleged murder-for-hire arrangement that resulted in the death of Charles Dembrosky was a scheme to collect on life insurance. [TU]

Alleged drug ring bust
The state Attorney General's Office announced the bust of an alleged Capital Region drug distribution operation that included charges against 19 people. The AG's office say the operation moved cocaine from New York City to Albany, Rensselaer, and Schenectady counties. Those charged include multiple people from Schenectady and Albany. AG Eric Schneiderman says the bust is part of recent surge focused on combatting drug trafficking. [NYS OAG] [Daily Gazette] [News10]

Richard Hartunian
Reviewing the tenure of Richard Hartunian as the US Attorney for this district as it comes to an end. [TU]

State legislature session end
And now the finger-pointing portion of the discussion about why the state legislature session ended without a handful of key topics being addressed. [TU]

Albany tax break error
+ A big overview by Mike DeMasi of the situation surrounding that error in interpreting a state tax break program made by the Albany assessor, including background and the political fallout. [Biz Review]
+ The state comptroller's office says it's aware of the error, but didn't comment on whether it'd be looking into it. [TU]

Albany auditor leaving office early
Albany city auditor Leif Engstrom is leaving office at the end of June to take a job with the Albany Housing Authority. (His term was up at the end of this year.) [TU]

Stewart's at odds with Voorheesville
Melissa Hale Spencer on the tension between Stewart's and the Voorheesville Planning Commission over the board invoking a full-length environmental review of the store the company wants to build at the site of the former Smith's Tavern. [Altamont Enterprise]

Airbnb founder back in Niskayuna
Talking with Airbnb co-founder Brian Chesky as he's back in Niskayuna as the commencement speaker for Niskayuna High School. [Daily Gazette]

"She said we are dreaming really big."
Tracing a family's path from Pakistan to Schenectady and the high school graduation of their daughter -- she's the first person in her family to accomplish that. [Daily Gazette]

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