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Cranberry pool in the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/usfwsnortheast/6537926433/"> U.S. Fish And Wildlife </a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Cranberry pool in the Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuge. Photo: U.S. Fish And Wildlife , Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Missisquoi delta recognized as important wetland

SWANTON, Vt. (AP) Vermont's Missisquoi Bay delta and bay wetlands are being recognized as important wetlands.

The Missisquoi National Wildlife Refuges and Vermont's Maquam, Carmen's Marsh and Rock River wildlife management areas along the northeastern edge of Lake Champlain are receiving the recognition from the international Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.  Go to full article
New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli. Photo: Comptroller's office
New York State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli. Photo: Comptroller's office

NY Comptroller discloses 2013 tax return

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli's tax return shows that he made $152,567 from his state salary in 2013, an increase from the $146,838 he made the year before.

DiNapoli reported $5,342 in dividends from AT&T, American Funds, Comcast, Verizon and Vodafone and had a capital gain of $3,246 from selling some stock.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="https://farm6.staticflickr.com/5220/5514797757_b09255c36b_o_d.jpg">4ELEVEN Images</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: 4ELEVEN Images, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY Assembly reviews auto insurance costs

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) State lawmakers want to know if auto insurers are charging blue collar New Yorkers more for insurance based on their education and occupation.

Democratic Assemblyman Kevin Cahill questioned insurance industry representatives about the practice during a hearing on auto insurance costs Thursday.  Go to full article

NY man sues doc, saying his appendix was left in

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. (AP) A New York investment banker had only one appendix. But he says two surgeons reported taking it out, in operations 14 months apart.

William McCormack is suing the first hospital, Lawrence Medical Center in Bronxville, and the surgeon, Dr. Michael Kerin.  Go to full article

Canadian sentenced for running US pot smuggling

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) A 66-year-old Canadian man has been sentenced in a northern New York court to 10 years in prison for his leading role in a multi-million-dollar marijuana smuggling operation.

The U.S. Department of Justice says Thursday that 66-year-old Nicolas Varacalli of Montreal was recently sentenced in federal court in Syracuse, where he pleaded guilty last December to conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance.  Go to full article
U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara at a lecture for Penn Law and the Wharton School in March. Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/pennlaw/12995711874/">>Penn Law</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara at a lecture for Penn Law and the Wharton School in March. Photo: >Penn Law, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Federal prosecutors taking NY commission files

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Federal prosecutors in Manhattan say they're taking the remaining files from the state anti-corruption commission now shutting down and plan to complete its investigations.

U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara requested the Moreland commission's "important and unfinished work" investigating New York political corruption. He tells the commissioners in a letter that the closing was "premature."  Go to full article
Howie Hawkins. Photo via <a href="https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=731754113516487&set=a.153413614683876.33158.123926960965875&type=1&theater">Howie Hawkins for Governor on Facebook</a>

Green Party's Hawkins begins bid for NY governor

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Green Party candidate Howie Hawkins is kicking off his campaign for New York governor, vowing to build on his third-place finish four years ago.

Hawkins announced his campaign Wednesday. He says that if elected he would
support raising the minimum wage, more investments in renewable energy and public transportation, a ban on hydraulic fracturing and higher taxes on wealthy earners.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="https://www.flickr.com/photos/intelfreepress/8598246170/in/photolist-8LuQST-e6Ng2C-8NUq62-8F1GRt-9Hb3L3-er4Ysk-6YWwXp-6FuAdr-6TVhwW-6LzRUk-6BCFa1-55TsLE-8jstrY-dUBZwd-68rFgK-e6Ng39-e6Ng2Y-ezkAcZ-a8KFqS-ecurxa-5TKcea-8LxqoL-7CoCJt-7CsswQ-9wzJbe-6AZMdx-e8fPdu-8k6njb-fM2ayo-6KEPat-7a1gjJ-cV6HRG-7CuzyH-cFhAbd-obBxG-8CXeMF-7pjLaz-bAgXr8-697dWL-5aKQs2-6S1AdZ-cckgTd-7H5WAA-6SWt65-g9oBY7-cjQptA-74zffL-74vmwM-74v8UK-74v8J6">Intel Free Press</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: Intel Free Press, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Distracted driving more likely to get you in trouble April 10-15

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) State and local police are increasing patrols and checkpoints statewide from April 10 to 15 to encourage drivers not to use their mobile phones.

Authorities say "Operation Hang Up" combines anti-texting and cell phone law enforcement with advertisements to let people know about the push and convince them to obey the law.

The first offense is a minimum fine of $50. That can increase to $400 for the third offense.  Go to full article

Report: More NYS children have health insurance

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) A new study shows continued gains in the numbers of New York children with health insurance, driven mostly by increased coverage through public programs.

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation report released Thursday shows the percentage of children without insurance dropped from 5.6 percent in 2008 to 4.3 percent in 2012.  Go to full article

NYC priest to be ordained Albany's Catholic bishop

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) The Rev. Monsignor Edward Scharfenberger of New York City is being ordained as the Catholic Diocese of Albany's 10th bishop.

The ordination Mass at the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception Thursday afternoon will be broadcast live on cable TV and on the diocesan website, www.rcda.org.  Go to full article

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