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News stories tagged with "albany"

Paterson fined over Yankees tickets

Governor Paterson has been fined over $62,000 by the state's ethics panel, which accuses him of illegally soliciting free tickets to a Yankees World Series game for himself, his son, his son's friend and aides, then lying about it in a cover up. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

Poll: skeptical view of fixing Albany

One day after the State Senate's failure to approve a bail out bill for New York City's OTB, leaving nearly a thousand people out of a job, comes a poll that finds New Yorkers have little hope for fixing Albany anytime soon, even with the advent of a new governor, Andrew Cuomo, in January. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article
The state of New York owes Northville Central School hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid property taxes (Photo:  Northville CSD website)
The state of New York owes Northville Central School hundreds of thousands of dollars in unpaid property taxes (Photo: Northville CSD website)

Are state property tax payments to Adirondacks a sure thing?

In many parts of the Adirondack Park, the biggest engine of the local economy isn't tourism or timber or mining. The main driver of the cash economy is the state of New York.

The state funds thousands of jobs in the Park at prisons, hospitals, schools, and mental health facilities.

But Albany also makes tens of millions of dollars in direct property tax payments every year to local governments and school districts, while asking for almost no services in return.

With New York's budget deficit expected to top ten billion dollars next year, community leaders are worried that those tax payments could be squeezed.

In part one of a two part series, Brian Mann looks at communities in the Park that have already seen the state cut off their property tax payments.  Go to full article
A decrease in state money and we're going to be limited on what we can raise locally? It is going to be a very, very difficult year.

Cuomo wants property tax cap for schools

As Governor Andrew Cuomo prepares to take office, one of his most high-profile agenda items is a proposed cap on the local property taxes that fund public schools.

It's not exactly a hard cap, but Cuomo wants to limit annual increases to just 2%.

That would be a big change from the double-digit increases that some North Country districts have seen in recent years.

The idea of some kind of property tax relief is supported by a wide range of politicians and tax-reform activists.

But many educators say other ideas should be on the table as well. And they say schools could be squeezed dangerously, forcing them to cut more teachers and more programs.

Brian Mann has our story  Go to full article
The state is in a real hole here and the counties have no interest in them simply passing the hole on to us.

Counties fear squeeze of state mandates, tax cap

If Albany approves a cap on property tax increases this winter, counties in the North Country could find themselves squeezed tighter than ever before.

They already facing rising demand for government services, at a time when costs for pensions, insurance, and fuel are also going up.

And the state pays less and less each year to cover the costs of programs that are mandated by New York's legislature.

With revenues already slipping in many counties, a property tax cap could push them deep into the red. Brian Mann has our story.  Go to full article

Albany DA to decide whether to prosecute Paterson for perjury

It's now up to the Albany County District Attorney to decide whether Governor David Paterson should be prosecuted for perjury, following a report that found Paterson misled an ethics panel over payment for tickets to a Yankees World Series game. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

Inmates to be excluded from North Country districts

A measure to change where prison inmates are counted when drawing political districts was slipped into the budget bills passed Tuesday night. Beginning with redistricting based on 2010 census data, inmates will be counted at their home addresses, not at the prison where they're locked up. Supporters called the change a victory for equal representation. But the North Country stands to lose more political clout. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article

Legislature returns for special session this week

Governor David Paterson is calling the legislature back to Albany later this week, demanding that they finish work on the now fifteen-week late state budget. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article
Andrew Cuomo meets and greets at the county fair
Andrew Cuomo meets and greets at the county fair

Cuomo's the front-runner, but voters still want to know more

Andrew Cuomo and his RV are making a swing through eastern half of the North Country today. The Democratic candidate for Governor has appearances in Port Henry, Plattsburgh, and Saranac Lake. He'll march in the Seaway Festival parade in Ogdensburg tomorrow. The stops are part of Cuomo's plan to visit all 62 counties in his "Drive for a New New York" campaign. Yesterday, Cuomo held rallies in Watertown and Speculator, and he toured the Lewis County fair in Lowville. That's where David Sommerstein found the Democrat greeting fairgoers. He reports many voters still have questions before choosing New York's next Governor.  Go to full article

North Country Power Authority bill passes Assembly

A bill paving the way for a municipally owned power company in St. Lawrence and Franklin counties passed the state Assembly yesterday. The bill to create the North Country Power Authority has already passed the state Senate. Robert Best of the Alliance for Municipal Power has been working on the project for almost 20 years. He expects Governor Paterson to sgn the bill into law soon. Martha Foley reports.  Go to full article

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