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The new St. Lawrence County jail. Photo: smrtinc.com
The new St. Lawrence County jail. Photo: smrtinc.com

NY provides $5M aimed at jail alternatives

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York officials say 23 programs statewide will share more than $5 million in grants to support alternatives to jail and reduce recidivism.

The grants are administered by the state Division of Criminal Justice Services.  Go to full article
The Legislative Office Building in Albany. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/70323761@N00/3810412442/">Wally Gobetz</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
The Legislative Office Building in Albany. Photo: Wally Gobetz, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

NY legislative budget hearings scheduled

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Joint Legislative hearings for the 2014-15 state budget are scheduled to begin on Jan. 27, with the first one focused on local government.

The 13 hearings, which continue through Feb. 11, are intended to provide legislative committees with public input on the executive budget proposal. They can be viewed on the Senate and Assembly websites.  Go to full article
Bassmaster Elite angler Randy Howell reels in a small mouth during a tournament practice session. Photo: David Sommerstein
Bassmaster Elite angler Randy Howell reels in a small mouth during a tournament practice session. Photo: David Sommerstein

Officials eye tourism boost from NY fishing events

AUBURN, N.Y. (AP) Officials in central New York anticipate a boost in tourism this summer with two competitive fishing events-- one featuring Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

A four-day Bassmaster Elite Series tournament will bring professional anglers to Cayuga Lake Aug. 21-24. On the opening day of that tourney, Cuomo will host the "Governor's Challenge" on Owasco Lake. He announced the event during his State of the State address last week, saying he and others will engage in a friendly contest to promote local tourism.  Go to full article
Hunters John and Brenan Quinn head back to camp. Photo: Brian Mann, 2002
Hunters John and Brenan Quinn head back to camp. Photo: Brian Mann, 2002

NY's computerized sporting license up and running

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) The state Department of Environmental Conservation's new computerized system for hunting, fishing and trapping licenses is up and running.  Go to full article
Chairlift at Haystack. Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/49727137@N03/4561305577/">Joseph Leotta</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Chairlift at Haystack. Photo: Joseph Leotta, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Vermont ski area reopens as private resort

WILMINGTON, Vt. (AP) Vermont's former Haystack ski area in Wilmington has reopened as a private ski club.

The Hermitage Club is now a four-season private club that includes skiing on Haystack Mountain. It opened for the season last month.  Go to full article
Past flooding along the Salmon River  in Malone, NY. Photo: Franklin County Emergency Services
Past flooding along the Salmon River in Malone, NY. Photo: Franklin County Emergency Services

Upstate NY getting warm-up, rain after deep freeze

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) The National Weather Service has issued flood watches for this weekend most of New York state as temperatures rise just days after some upstate areas received up to five feet of snow.  Go to full article
National Grid using my backyard as a fix-it shop. Photo: David Sommerstein.
National Grid using my backyard as a fix-it shop. Photo: David Sommerstein.

NY power grid meets new record electrical demand

RENSSLEAR, N.Y. (AP) The operators of New York state's power grid say the system has successfully met a new record peak winter demand for electricity resulting from this week's arctic weather conditions.

The New York Independent System Operator said Thursday that electricity demand hit a winter record high of 25,738 megawatts on Tuesday evening. The old record was 25,541 megawatts on Dec. 20, 2004.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/50546088@N00/7212923168/">Chris Barker</a>, Creative Commons, Some rights reserved.
Photo: Chris Barker, Creative Commons, Some rights reserved.

NY school lunch yogurt pilot program expanded

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) Based on the success of a three-month pilot program in New York and three other states, officials say the U.S. Department of Agriculture has decided to expand a program adding Greek yogurt to school lunches.

Sen. Charles Schumer on Thursday said participating schools in New York, Tennessee, Idaho and Arizona consumed 200,000 pounds of Chobani Greek yogurt during the three-month pilot program last fall. Chobani is made in New York, which leads the U.S. in Greek yogurt production.  Go to full article
North Congregational Church, St. Johnsbury, VT. Photo: <a href=http://www.flickr.com/photos/34674104@N02/504064943/">Dominic Labbe</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
North Congregational Church, St. Johnsbury, VT. Photo: Dominic Labbe, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Vermont community discusses prescription drug abuse

ST. JOHNSBURY, Vt. (AP) Community members in the Vermont town of St. Johnsbury are holding a forum on prescription drug abuse.

The forum on Tuesday night is inspired by Barnet filmmaker Bess O'Brien's documentary "The Hungry Heart," which profiles recovering addicts in St. Albans.  Go to full article
Photo: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/53627445@N06/6201657004/">West Annex News</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
Photo: West Annex News, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Toronto mayor backs pot decriminalization

Toronto Mayor Rob Ford is weighing in on another hot topic. He told a U.S.-based radio talk show today that Canada's government should decriminalize marijuana but he doesn't think it will happen.  Go to full article

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