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NCPR News Staff: The Associated Press

Stories filed by The Associated Press

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Late season ice on Lake Champlain. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/28555778@N00/433797414/">Rob Friesel</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Late season ice on Lake Champlain. Photo: Rob Friesel, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Vermonters warned of weakening ice on lakes

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) Vermonters are being warned to stay off the ice on the state's lakes and ponds.

Despite recent cold temperatures, the sun is shining brighter and longer and the heat is being absorbed by water below the surface, melting ice from the bottom up.

So officials from the state of Vermont and the U.S. Coast Guard are warning that even if a surface seems solid it is likely weakened significantly. Warmer temperatures forecast over the next few days will degrade the ice even more.  Go to full article
The Bills playing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Ralph Wilson Stadium in 2009. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/20456447@N03/6204627051">Matthew D. Britt</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
The Bills playing the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Ralph Wilson Stadium in 2009. Photo: Matthew D. Britt, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Bills staying put for now following Wilson's death

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Ralph Wilson fulfilled his vow in keeping the Bills in Buffalo during his lifetime. And they won't be leaving any time soon following the 95-year-old Pro Football Hall of Fame owner's death.

In what is being referred to as Wilson's parting gift to his adopted community, the Bills are locked in to playing at Ralph Wilson Stadium through the next six years.  Go to full article
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Photo: Mark Kurtz
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand. Photo: Mark Kurtz

Sen. Gillibrand asks for update of oil spill plans

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is urging the Environmental Protection Agency and the Coast Guard to upgrade contingency plans for oil spills in New York and New Jersey.

Gillibrand says safety guidelines need to be updated because the amount of oil transported by railroad through densely populated areas has more than doubled in the two years since the plan was last updated.  Go to full article
Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/mdgovpics/11425470136/in/photostream/">Maryland GovPics</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. Photo: Maryland GovPics, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY state gets $28M from feds for wildlife programs

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York state is getting more than $28 million from the federal government to fund fish and wildlife conservation and recreation projects.

That's the Empire State's share of the nearly $1.1 billion in excise tax revenues paid by sportsmen and sportswomen that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will distribute to state fish and wildlife agencies nationwide. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell announced the funding Tuesday.  Go to full article
Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders at a Veterans and Military Families Summit last week announced an agreement on legislation to award six percent of state contracts to service-disabled veteran owned small businesses. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/governorandrewcuomo/13291500255/">Office of Gov. Cuomo</a>
Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders at a Veterans and Military Families Summit last week announced an agreement on legislation to award six percent of state contracts to service-disabled veteran owned small businesses. Photo: Office of Gov. Cuomo

NY Legislature OKs contracting goal for veterans

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) The New York Legislature has approved a goal of 6 percent state contracting with companies owned by service-disabled veterans.

The bill passed by the Senate and Assembly creates a state procurement unit to develop and coordinate a statewide plan that promotes contracting by state agencies with those companies.  Go to full article

Bodies buried in Stockholm yard ID'd as missing couple

STOCKHOLM, N.Y. (AP) State police say bodies dug up behind a mobile home in northern New York have been identified as a missing couple in their 80s.

Police say the bodies of Alvin and Betty Babcock were found buried in concrete-lined boxes on their property in the St. Lawrence County town of Stockholm, about 10 miles south of the Canadian border.  Go to full article
Button for a national campaign launched by NY businessman Tom Golisano to use the popular vote count to determine the presidential winner.
Button for a national campaign launched by NY businessman Tom Golisano to use the popular vote count to determine the presidential winner.

NY lawmakers approve "National Popular Vote" bill

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York lawmakers have approved a bill that would enter the state in an interstate agreement to award its electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the majority of the popular vote.

The National Popular Vote agreement is triggered when 270 electoral votes are reached, enough to give the states who signed the compact a majority of the electoral votes.  Go to full article
A CCTA bus in Vermont. <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/afagen/8611378361/sizes/z/in/photolist-e7XyLH-e7XyAg-e7XyX8-8qeXo8-8wwzTL-8wwyyJ-aePwrN-98VAEn-98VAxn-8qi6XW-akb1J4-akb1Qv-98YJrQ-9tLwdH/">Adam Fagen</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
A CCTA bus in Vermont. Adam Fagen, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Striking Vt. bus drivers say walkout to continue

BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) Vermont bus drivers say the strike will continue following their meeting with the Chittenden County Transportation Authority over the weekend.

Speaking at a Monday news conference, leaders of the bus drivers union say CCTA did not accept parts of a union offer during a Saturday negotiating session.  Go to full article

NY loans for businesses of women, minorities

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York is launching a program to expand access to short-term bridge loans to minority and women-owned business enterprises.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says Monday that participating lenders are committing at least $20 million to the launch of the "Bridge to Success" program.  Go to full article
North Dakota crude oil spilled into wetlands near Aliceville Alabama from a train derailment. Photo: <a href=" http://www.flickr.com/photos/29184238@N06/11168835315/ ">John Walthen, Public Herald</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
North Dakota crude oil spilled into wetlands near Aliceville Alabama from a train derailment. Photo: John Walthen, Public Herald, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY asks feds to update oil spill response plans

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York officials are asking the Environmental Protection Agency to update a contingency plan for dealing with oil spills, in light of the rapid expansion of rail shipments of crude oil from North Dakota.

State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens sent a letter Monday to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. He said under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990, EPA is responsible for creating Inland Area Contingency Plans to improve preparedness for oil spills.  Go to full article

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