New York congressman introduces constitutional amendment on presidential immunity

BY Spectrum News Staff Washington, D.C.

A New York representative formally introduced a bill Wednesday that would begin the process for a constitutional amendment designed to reverse the U.S. Supreme Court's decision granting a president immunity from criminal prosecution for official acts in office.

Sponsored by Rep. Joseph Morelle, NY-25, and co-sponsored by 49 Democrats including Reps. Paul Tonko, NY-20, and Tim Kennedy, NY-26, the resolution proposes a constiutional amendment prohibiting immunity for the president, and a president from pardoning himself or herself. It was referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary on Wednesday.

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FBI searches home of former aide to New York Gov. Kathy Hochul

BY Associated Press New York City

The FBI searched the Long Island home of a former aide to New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Tuesday.

The former staffer, Linda Sun, has not been accused of wrongdoing, and an FBI spokesman declined to release details beyond confirming that agents “conducted court-authorized law enforcement activity in Manhasset."

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Local bridge conditions improve slightly in New York

BY Spectrum News Staff New York State

New York's locally-owned bridges are in better condition than they were six years ago, but 10% are still rated as poor, according to the Federal Highway Administration.

A press release from State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli's office Thursday said that New York's percentage of local bridges in poor condition is down from 12.1% in 2017, but the estimated cost for necessary work on the bridges was around $29 billion. More than half of the 81 bridges closed in 2023 were locally-owned.

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Twenty-eight health care facilities statewide to receive funding for training

BY Brian Campbell New York State

More than two dozen health care facilities across the state will receive $22.5 million in awards during the next year for training, Gov. Kathy Hochul announced Thursday.

The Increasing Training Capacity in Statewide Healthcare Facilities awards, issued by the State Health Department’s Office of Healthcare Workforce Innovation, will go to 13 hospitals and 15 nursing homes and will provide up to $1 million per year for two years to each health care facility.

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Police seek clarity on enforcement as New York cannabis office focuses on illicit shops

BY Kate Lisa New York State

Enforcement leaders in the state Office of Cannabis Management said Wednesday the department is putting pressure on New York's illicit market, but local police argue they need more direction from the state to eliminate thousands of illegal dispensaries operating statewide.

The 2025 budget included $13.4 million to hire 95 people dedicated to fight illicit marijuana sales, including 37 OCM enforcement staff, 43 to assist the state Department of Taxation and Finance and 15 workers in the Attorney General's Office to assist with related litigation.

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Exclusive: N.Y. WFP considers endorsing controversial 'Not on Our Dime' act

BY Bernadette Hogan New York City

While the war in Israel and Gaza is dividing Americans, the issue could similarly cause a rift within New York’s Working Families Party.

NY1 has exclusively learned that the small but influential political party is considering endorsing legislation that would bar charities in the state from supporting Israel’s military or settlement activity on disputed land in the Middle East, like the Gaza strip.

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A look at the history of Charter Revision Commissions

BY Kelly Mena New York City

Mayor Eric Adams’ Charter Revision Commission will vote on its five ballot questions on Thursday, which would then go to city voters this November.

The vote will mark an end to the fast work of the commission that was asked to recommend changes to the city’s governing document.

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Daniel's Law Task Force meets, moves closer to issuing recommendations

BY Jack Arpey New York State

The Daniel’s Law Task Force met virtually Wednesday as New York continues to explore reducing police involvement in mental health-related calls.

The program stems from proposed legislation known as Daniel's Law, named for Daniel Prude, who died in 2020 of asphyxiation while in Rochester police custody during a mental health incident.

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Rep. Lawler reacts to Netanyahu speech; discusses Secret Service bill

BY Susan Arbetter Albany

Since the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, there’s been a bipartisan effort underway to ensure presidential candidates have increased protection.

One bill is sponsored by 17th Congressional District Republican Rep. Mike Lawler and 15th Congressional District Democrat Rep. Ritchie Torres, both from New York. It would provide enhanced United States Secret Service protection to Trump, Vice President Kamala Harris and presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.

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Can Kamala Harris grab the youth vote? Marist College pollster weighs in

BY Ryan Whalen New York State

Just two days after President Joe Biden announced he would not seek reelection and endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris, Marist College released a poll examining the new landscape.

"It was a quick one-day poll, and normally we would be doing multi-days, but I think we were trying to get in a quickly changing environment a snapshot of how the public was reacting to this," said Lee Miringoff, Marist College Institute for Public Opinion director.

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Political memes can pack a punch, but some are misleading, professor warns

BY Brian Dwyer Watertown

Whether it's former President Donald Trump’s face photoshopped into Hulk Hogan’s body, or Vice President Kamala Harris climbing a coconut tree, the 2024 political season is the first to truly highlight the growth of social media, particularly memes.

Some are positive, some negative. Some are funny and some downright mean. But they are here to stay and could be having a much bigger influence than you think.

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State assemblyman moves to build support for North Country prisons

BY Spectrum News Staff Watertown

Days after New York state moved to close two prisons, a state assemblymember on Wednesday encouraged North Country communities to join him in opposing additional prison closings in New York.

Assemblyman Scott Gray, a Republican from Watertown, released a plan to boost support for prison facilities in the Northern New York, where there are multiple medium-security correctional facilities.

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Tonko is the latest N.Y. politician to skip Netanyahu address to Congress

BY Spectrum News Staff and Associated Press New York State
UPDATED 11:44 AM ET Jul. 24, 2024

Rep. Paul Tonko of New York's 20th Congressional District is the latest New York politician to say he will not attend Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to Congress today.

"I am more than ready to have meaningful discussions about how to end the violence & bring lasting peace to the region," Tonko posted Wednesday morning on social media. "But—through his words & actions—Prime Minister Netanyahu has made clear he has no intention to do that with his address. For that reason, I will not attend."

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Summer of Kathy Hochul: Halting congestion pricing, election pressures

BY Bernadette Hogan New York City

Gov. Kathy Hochul started the summer months by dropping a bomb: halting congestion pricing.

She’s since found herself as a key defender of an embattled President Joe Biden. Now she’s pledged support for his heir apparent — Kamala Harris — and promised to help elect Democrats in vulnerable congressional districts.

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New York state DEC crews heading to Montana to assist with wildfires

BY Spectrum News Staff New York State

New York is sending help in response to severe weather in the western part of the country, as many states are once again battling wildfires.

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced Monday that 20 state Department of Environmental Conservation fire responders are heading to Montana to help with efforts to contain fires there. New York is also sending a forest ranger to Oregon to assist with efforts there.

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N.Y. Dems, GOP weigh impact of Harris nomination on women in politics

BY Kate Lisa New York State

A Kamala Harris presidential candidacy will have a ripple effect on state and local races — giving new energy to Democrats and boosting support for women running for office. But New York political strategists said Tuesday they will be prepared as her campaign brings systemic challenges to the forefront.

In her 2016 speech conceding to Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton dreamed of the U.S. breaking the glass ceiling and electing its first woman president.

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Experts say comparisons between 1968 and 2024 presidential races require heavy dose of context

BY Jack Arpey New York State

It's hard not to draw comparisons between the events surrounding President Joe Biden’s withdrawal from the 2024 presidential campaign and the election of 1968, when President Lyndon B. Johnson withdrew from the race in March.

That election and the ensuing upheaval in the Democratic Party were catalysts for change to how primaries are run.

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Hochul talks about New York Democrats' support for Harris

BY Ryan Whalen Dunkirk

DUNKIRK, N.Y. -- Despite early questions about a delay in endorsing Kamala Harris as the Democratic nominee for president, Gov. Kathy Hochul made clear again Tuesday her support for the current vice president is complete and emphatic.

"I know about being number two. You understand the job. She's been at Joe Biden's side since he first took office and she's traveled the world and has met with countless leaders and cares about the same issues that are important to us as New Yorkers so I wanted her to know that New York state is Kamala Harris country," she said.

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N.Y. Attorney General Letitia James discusses her support for VP Kamala Harris’ presidential campaign

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

When President Biden endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris for the top job on Sunday, one of the first New York state elected officials to offer her support was state Attorney General Letitia James.

James and Harris have a lot in common: they are both graduates of Howard University; they have both served as AG; and they are both accomplished women of color.

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SUNY chancellor describes Empire State Service Corps program

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

The State University of New York system and the state are working together to create and fund a new jobs program that’s like the Empire State version of AmeriCorps or a domestic version of the Peace Corps.

SUNY Chancellor Dr. John King spoke with Capital Tonight’s Susan Arbetter about the Empire State Service Corps Program, which was funded in this year’s state budget to the tune of $2.75 million, and will employ 500 young people across the state.

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Albany mayor seeks to fill seat on Albany County Pine Hills Land Authority

BY Spectrum News Staff Albany

Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan on Tuesday called on candidates to apply for a seat on the Albany County Pine Hills Land Authority, a newly formed seven-person board that could purchase the former campus of The College of Saint Rose in Albany.

The applicant must be a resident of Albany County who is not employed by the city/county. Residents of the Pine Hills neighborhood of Albany with experience in economic development and real estate are preferred, Sheehan said.

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Commission says New York judge should be removed over profane rant at graduation party

BY Associated Press Central NY

A New York state judge who engaged in a prolonged, offensive rant after a melee erupted at a high school graduation party should be removed from office, a judicial watchdog panel ruled.

State Supreme Court Justice Erin Gall, 53, invoked her authority as a judge to try to get uninvited guests arrested, threatened to shoot Black teenagers and bragged that her 18-year-old son had “put the smackdown” on another partygoer, the state Commission on Judicial Conduct said in its report issued Monday.

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Top Democratic leaders Schumer, Jeffries endorse Harris for president

BY Kevin Frey and Joseph Konig Washington, D.C.
UPDATED 2:28 PM ET Jul. 23, 2024

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, both of New York, endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris to be the Democratic nominee for president at a joint press conference in Washington on Tuesday afternoon.

Harris — who was endorsed by President Joe Biden on Sunday afternoon as he announced he was dropping out of the race — has quickly racked up scores of endorsements from Democrats in Washington and across the country, successfully discouraged any major potential challengers from running and locked up the number of Democratic National Convention delegates needed to secure the nomination as of late Monday night, according to a tally by the Associated Press.

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Manhattan congressman joins swell of support for Harris

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

Rep. Dan Goldman has joined the ranks of state congressional delegates backing Vice President Kamala Harris to become the new Democratic nominee following President Joe Biden’s departure from the election.

“I think she's been the vice president for three and a half years, being right by Joe Biden’s side as he has passed historic legislation on infrastructure, renewable energy, lowering prescription drug prices, bipartisan gun safety—the list goes on and on,” he said during an appearance on “Mornings On 1” Tuesday. “And this is what you have a vice president for in many ways is to learn the ropes side by side with someone with the experience, wisdom and patriotism of Joe Biden.”

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N.Y. election experts: Dem presidential candidate change follows the law

BY Kate Lisa New York State

New York election experts said Monday they do not expect legal challenges to stand up in court against Democrats nominating Vice President Kamala Harris to be the party's official candidate for president after more than 14 million people voted for President Joe Biden in primary elections held earlier this year.

New York’s delegates to the Democratic National Convention have endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris for the Democratic nomination for president, the party announced Monday evening. New York sends 307 Democratic delegates to the convention, which is scheduled to take place in Chicago in mid-August.

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New York Democratic delegates endorse Kamala Harris for party's nomination for president

BY Luke Parsnow New York State

A little more than 24 hours after President Joe Biden’s withdrawal from his reelection bid turned the 2024 race upside down, New York’s delegates to the Democratic National Convention have endorsed Vice President Kamala Harris for the Democratic nomination for president, the party announced Monday evening.

Gov. Kathy Hochul and state party leaders held a virtual meeting Monday evening to discuss their path forward following Biden’s sudden exit.

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N.Y.'s swing district Democrats see new energy with Harris

BY Dan Rivoli New York City

Mondaire Jones, a Democratic former congressman looking to win a competitive House seat in the Hudson Valley, said there’s new enthusiasm in his race now that Vice President Kamala Harris is poised to be the presidential nominee this November.

“People here are enthusiastic about a new generation of leadership embodied by Vice President Kamala Harris,” Jones said.

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New York Democratic lawmakers weigh in on historic nature of a potential Kamala Harris candidacy

BY Jack Arpey New York State

State level Democratic lawmakers are reacting to the news that Vice President Kamala Harris could be topping the ticket this fall.

If she is the Democratic nominee, she would be the first Black woman and first Asian American to lead a presidential ticket, and if elected, she would be the first female president. Already the first female vice president, some lawmakers are already talking about how Harris could continue to make history.

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N.Y. Democratic chair: State party leaders likely to unite behind Kamala Harris

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

President Joe Biden’s decision to withdraw from the presidential race this late in the political calendar is unprecedented and has sent a jolt through both the Democratic and Republican presidential campaigns.

But according to the chairman of New York’s Democratic Party, Vice President Kamala Harris is the one and only choice to run for the top spot, and New York state’s leaders are behind her.

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Adams endorses Harris despite migrant crisis criticism

BY Kelly Mena New York City

As top New York Democrats began rushing to endorse Kamala Harris for president on Sunday, Mayor Eric Adams did not join the stampede.

“I have a great deal of respect for the vice president, but I think there’s a process in place and we’re going to allow that process to go through,” Adams told NY1’s Dean Meminger on Sunday after news President Joe Biden had dropped out of the race and endorsed Harris.

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New York DNC delegates believe party is re-energized by Harris as potential nominee

BY Ryan Whalen Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- New York state delegates to the Democratic National Convention had varying opinions when President Joe Biden announced he was no longer seeking reelection over the weekend.

"I was very shocked because he was really holding strong about running and continue to run into the fall but now I think that the president made the right decision," Buffalo Common Council Member Mitch Nowakowski said.

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Rep. Nick Langworthy introduces resolution demanding the firing of Secret Service director after Trump shooting

BY Luke Parsnow New York State

U.S. Rep. Nick Langworthy on Monday introduced a resolution demanding the termination of U.S. Secret Service Director Kimberly Cheatle following the attempted assassination of former President Trump more than a week ago.

Cheatle was questioned on Capitol Hill Monday by the House Oversight Committee and has been called on to resign by the top Republican and Democratic lawmakers on that panel and other bipartisan members of Congress. Cheatle acknowledged her agency failed in protecting Trump but has refused to step down.

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Former U.S. Rep. Henry Nowak, who championed Western New York infrastructure, dies at 89

BY Spectrum News Staff and Associated Press Western New York

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — Former Democratic U.S. Rep. Henry Nowak, who represented Western New York from 1975 to 1992, has died. He was 89.

“On a day of great change for Democrats, the ... community mourns the passing of one of the greatest elected officials we have ever had,” Erie County Democratic Chairman Jeremy Zellner said on X, announcing the death Sunday after President Joe Biden dropped out of the 2024 presidential race.

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Professor talks Harris seeking Democratic presidential nomination

BY Shannan Ferry New York City

As the dust settles from President Joe Biden’s decision to bow out of the 2024 presidential race, all eyes are on Vice President Kamala Harris, and the upcoming Democratic National Convention.

Alain Sanders, professor emeritus of political science at Saint Peter’s University, joined “News All Day” on Monday to share his insight on the upcoming Democratic National Convention.

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Biden's decision upends Republican line of attack, political strategist says

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

Less than a week ago, Republicans firmly held the political spotlight coming off a convention where the party rallied around former President Donald Trump. But just as quickly, Democrats have grabbed the current news cycle, with President Joe Biden announcing his decision to end his reelection campaign and choosing to endorse his vice president, Kamala Harris, as the Democratic nominee.

According to Republican political strategist Bill O’Reilly, Biden’s decision has upended the Republican’s line of attack.

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N.Y. congressman urges support for Harris

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

Bronx Rep. Ritchie Torres has thrown his weight behind Vice President Kamala Harris following President Joe Biden’s announcement that he will not seek reelection in November.

With the Democratic National Convention set for Aug. 19 and the general election just four months away, Biden’s decision has added an unexpected twist into the race. Torres, however, sees Harris as the natural successor, saying her ascension has "an aura of inevitability."

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Hochul calls for federal emergency declaration after severe weather

BY Brian Campbell New York State

Gov. Kathy Hochul has requested a federal emergency declaration from President Joe Biden to support response and recovery operations in 15 counties following a string of severe weather which recently devastated areas throughout upstate New York.

This declaration would authorize FEMA to provide reimbursement for debris removal operations, emergency protective measures like search and rescue operations, and actions to eliminate or reduce immediate threats of significant additional damage to critical infrastructure such as roads, bridges, water control facilities and utilities.

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Hochul provides update on state recovery from CrowdStrike global tech outage

BY Brian Campbell New York State

Leaders from counties across New York state are still working to get a handle on the massive computer system crash caused by the global CrowdStrike outage early Friday. These issues are expected to continue through the weekend and possibly beyond for many people, organizations and municipalities.

Gov. Kathy Hochul says that New York state officials are continuing to address the IT outage of Windows computers affected and have made significant progress in restoring systems.

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A look at the legal fight over expanding CityFHEPS

BY Kelly Mena New York City
UPDATED 11:00 AM ET Jul. 20, 2024

Arnold Fernandez is many things: a father, husband and soon to be grandfather. He’s also one of many struggling New Yorkers facing eviction.

“I’ve never been to a shelter. I’ve seen a lot of news about the shelters, but I’ve never been to one,” he said.

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As more Dems nationally call for Biden to bow out, prominent New Yorkers, including Rep. AOC, voice support

BY Kevin Frey Washington, D.C.

As calls for President Joe Biden to drop his reelection bid grew louder Friday, the commander-in-chief also got a dose of public support from several high profile New Yorkers.

In an Instagram live feed, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said people “underestimate” Biden and argued for keeping the Biden-Harris ticket intact. “I have not seen an alternative scenario that I feel does not set us up for enormous peril,” she said.

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Mixed reaction to New York state's closing of 2 prisons

BY Jack Arpey New York State

The state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision determined two correctional facilities in upstate New York can be safely closed. It comes after state budget language approved earlier this year allowed the state to close up to five prisons with 90 days' notice.

Great Meadow Correctional Facility in Washington County and Sullivan Correctional Facilities in Sullivan County will close on Nov. 6, DOCCS said Thursday. The decision comes after a DOCCS reviewed the state’s 44 prisons, taking into account diminished incarcerated populations; physical infrastructure; program offerings; whether inmates can be relocated to other institutions; security levels; specialized medical and mental health services; and areas of the state where prior closures have occurred in order to minimize the impact to communities and other factors.

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Former House speaker and HUD secretary headline Chautauqua Institution lecture

BY Ryan Whalen Chautauqua County

CHAUTAUQUA, N.Y. — The Chautauqua Institution Summer Lecture Series welcomed former Barack Obama cabinet member Julián Castro and former Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy to its stage Friday.

The topic was the future of humankind in a crowded world but with so much happening in the country lately, a lot of the focus was on current events.

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NYSERDA and PSC discuss climate transition timeline, comptroller’s audit

BY Susan Arbetter Albany

During a conversation Thursday at the Hearst Tower in New York City with reporter Dan Clark, Gov. Kathy Hochul stated the state’s aggressive climate law was becoming costly to implement, like congestion pricing. Because Hochul paused congestion pricing, Capital Tonight asked Doreen Harris, president and CEO of NYSERDA – the New York State Energy, Research and Development Authority – if the administration had plans to pause the implementation of its already delayed climate goals. Harris said no.

“Absolutely not. And instead, what we are seeing is this market response. Clearly, change takes time but at the same time, when we set these goals, we see the market responding in ways that are truly transforming our economy and, and, benefitting New Yorkers. So, our commitment remains firm,” she said.

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DOH commissioner discusses new opioid antagonist procurement; won’t commit to new standing order

BY Susan Arbetter Albany

Capital Tonight has been reporting on the push to broaden the kinds of opioid antagonists the state uses to stop overdoses. The state presently contracts with only one maker of naloxone or Narcan, but that may change.

According to the state Health Department Commissioner Dr. Jim McDonald, DOH will issue a new procurement next year to see if the state can get a better price on the drug.

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Small town's residents fear uncertain future with prison closing

BY Corey James Washington County

New York's decision to close two maximum-security prisons this fall has left small towns like Comstock in Washington County facing an uncertain future.

The state announced Thursday that Great Meadow Correctional Facility in Washington County and Sullivan Correctional Facility in Sullivan County will close Nov. 6, eliminating over 900 jobs. For Comstock, a town that has long relied on the prison for economic stability, the closure threatens to turn it into a ghost town.

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Hochul moves to 'decarbonize' Empire State Plaza with $100M in funding

BY Spectrum News Staff Albany

Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday committed $100 million to fund energy conversion aimed at "decarbonizing" the Empire State Plaza and Capitol in Albany.

Designed to reduce the environmental impacts of the 98-acre state government complex and advance New York state's climate goals, the phased project is outlined in the Empire State Plaza Energy Infrastructure Master Plan released on Friday.

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Comptroller DiNapoli releases report on 2024-25 Financial Plan

BY Brian Campbell New York State

New York Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli has released a new report on the State Fiscal Year (SFY) 2024-25 Enacted Budget Financial Plan, which forecasts a cumulative three-year budget gap of $13.9 billion by the Division of the Budget (DOB).

DiNapoli says action is needed to align projected state spending with revenues and address factors that challenge the state’s finances, economic competitiveness, and ability to offer services effectively over the long term.

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Hochul orders flags at half-staff in honor of Corey Comperatore

BY Spectrum News Staff and Brian Campbell New York State

Gov. Kathy Hochul has announced that flags at all New York state buildings will fly at half-staff in honor of Corey Comperatore on July 19.

Comperatore, a former fire chief who was shot and killed at Donald Trump's rally in Butler, Pennsylvania on July 13, spent his final moments protecting his family from gunfire in the attempted assassination of the former president.

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N.Y. GOP chair sees chance to turn state red

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

The chairman of New York state’s Republican Party on Friday praised former President Donald Trump's call for unity at the Republican National Convention and expressed optimism about flipping New York from blue to red.

"He gave a strong speech vowing to be the candidate that unites the American people," Ed Cox said during an appearance on “Mornings On 1.” "We have a shared destiny, as he said it."

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Could Biden dropping out change the dynamic of New York's competitive congressional races?

BY Kevin Frey Washington, D.C.

Joe Biden is facing growing pressure to drop his reelection bid, with Democrats worried his presence on the ticket could cost them in down ballot contests.

New York is home to several of the competitive congressional districts that Democrats hope to flip in order to win back control of the U.S. House. However, polling shows Biden’s popularity in New York has sagged compared to 2020, prompting questions whether he might be a drag on Democrats in those key congressional races.

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Judge blocks outside income limit for New York state lawmakers

BY Jack Arpey Albany

A judge temporarily struck down part of a pay raise for New York state lawmakers on Wednesday.

In exchange for the raise, lawmakers were expected to limit their outside income to $35,000 annually outside of their legislative salaries with some caveats. That part is set to go into effect on Jan. 1.

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Molinaro discusses bill to create a registry to identify immigrants who commit crimes and are in the U.S. illegally

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

The final night of the Republican National Convention is Thursday with former President Donald Trump delivering the keynote speech and officially accepting his party’s nomination for the third consecutive election.

One of the notable people in the audience will be Hudson Valley U.S. Rep. Marc Molinaro, who has introduced legislation creating a registry of immigrants in the country illegally who have committed felonies.

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City Council file advice and consent for November ballot

BY Kelly Mena New York City

The battle between the two sides of City Hall over the confirmation of mayoral appointments doesn’t seem to be subsiding anytime soon.

On Thursday, the City Council filed what’s known as its advice and consent ballot question with the Board of Elections.

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New York DOH to renew Narcan contract but consider other options moving forward

BY Ryan Whalen New York State

ALBANY, N.Y. -- Following recent pressure from addiction services organizations, the New York state Department of Health appears to be open to purchasing other brands of opioid overdose reversal drug naloxone besides the most well-known, Narcan.

However, that likely won't happen until at least next year. The DOH confirmed Thursday it will opt in to another year of the current $21 million contract with pharmaceutical subsidiary Emergent Devices.

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Hochul signs bill increasing number of family, civil court judges to help ease case backlog

BY Luke Parsnow New York State

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul signed legislation that will expand the number of judges appointed and elected statewide in an effort to help reduce the case backlog in family and civil courts, her office announced Wednesday.

The new law will increases the number of family and civil court judges by 28. Two will be assigned to Nassau County, two will be assigned to Suffolk County, and one additional judge will be assigned in each of the following counties: Cayuga, Chenango, Cortland, Erie, Jefferson, Rensselaer, Rockland and Westchester.

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War of words: After Trump shooting, Republicans and Democrats duel over who’s been more divisive

BY Kevin Frey Washington, D.C.
UPDATED 1:18 PM ET Jul. 18, 2024

After the assassination attempt on Donald Trump, leaders of both parties called for turning down the political heat.

But that has given rise to a war of words, as some Republicans argue the rhetoric of Democrats is dangerous - even though some prominent Republicans have used similar language to describe Joe Biden. Democrats say blaming them for inflamed rhetoric is cynical at best, given who leads the GOP presidential ticket.

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Public Service Commission OKs Central Hudson rate increases

BY Spectrum News Staff Hudson Valley

Central Hudson customers will pay an additional $12 and change per month for electric and gas under new rate plans established Thursday by the New York State Public Service Commission.

The "typical" residential electric customer will see a 7.85% increase, or approximately $12.65 per month, while the same residential natural gas customer will pay an approximately 9.19% increase, or about $12.25 a month, according to Central Hudson.

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New York to close 2 upstate prisons this fall following review of facilities

BY Luke Parsnow New York State

The New York state Department of Corrections and Community Supervision has determined that two correctional facilities in upstate can be safely closed, following through on state budget language approved earlier this year that allowed the state to close up to five prisons with 90 days' notice.

Great Meadow Correctional Facility, in Washington County, and Sullivan Correctional Facilities, in Sullivan County, will close on Nov. 6, DOCCS said Thursday.

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Ten years after Eric Garner’s death: What has changed?

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

This week marks the 10-year anniversary of the death of Eric Garner, a man who was placed in an illegal chokehold by police who were arresting him for selling cigarettes illegally on a Staten Island street. Garner’s dying words to police, “I can’t breathe,” became a rallying cry for protesters who were outraged at the police brutality.

Debi Rose was a former Staten Island councilwoman whose district included the block where Garner was killed. Reverend Kirsten Foy is an activist who was a major organizer around the Garner case. They both joined NY1’s Errol Louis to tell the story of Garner’s killing and the many attempts by his family to fight for justice. They also discussed what, if anything, has changed in the ensuing decade.

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On 10th anniversary of Eric Garner's death, community fights to keep memory alive

BY Nia Clark Staten Island

It has been 10 years since Eric Garner died at the hands of an NYPD officer who put him in a banned chokehold. Community members on Staten Island, where Garner lived, are still organizing to keep his memory alive.

On Wednesday, more than a dozen people marched from the Staten Island Ferry to a block party in Tompkinsville Park, across the street from the Staten Island sidewalk where Garner died.

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New York PTA, lawmakers ready to defend limiting smartphones in schools

BY Kate Lisa New York State

New York parents are expected to pose the greatest pushback to Gov. Kathy Hochul's plans to limit the use of smartphones in schools, but lawmakers and leaders with the state Parent Teacher Association said Wednesday they're prepared to defend the proposal, which will keep students the most safe.

Hochul and her staff have held meetings every day this week to shape a new policy to limit the use of smartphones and other mobile devices in New York schools — with the governor meeting with Capital Region schools Monday and districts Tuesday on Long Island. Other representatives of her office met with the state PTA on Wednesday about the proposal for elementary, middle and high school students.

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The money race: How much do N.Y. congressional candidates have after the second quarter of 2024?

BY Kevin Frey Washington, D.C.

With just four months to go until the fall election, financial disclosure filings show Democrats have the cash-on-hand advantage in most of the competitive congressional seats across New York.

In many cases, the Democrats outraised their Republican opponents in those contests in the second quarter, which includes all of April, May and June.

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Mayor Adams and MTA officials tout drop in subway crime

BY Patrick Adcroft and Samantha Liebman New York City
UPDATED 7:40 PM ET Jul. 17, 2024

The city has seen nearly six straight months of double-digit drops in subway crime since the NYPD surged officers into the system in February, officials said Wednesday.

Transit crime dropped by 15.3% year over year in June, marking the fifth straight month of double-digit decreases, NYPD data shows.

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Tornado 'worst event to ever hit the city of Rome,' Hochul says while touring storm damage

BY Shalon Stevens and Luke Parsnow Rome
UPDATED 7:36 PM ET Jul. 17, 2024

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday toured storm damage in the city of Rome after a devastating tornado touched down on the region Tuesday afternoon, following a week of multiple confirmed tornados and dozens of tornado warnings across the state.

“This is the worst event to ever hit the city of Rome in its long 228-year history,” Hochul said at a press briefing Wednesday afternoon.

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Brennan Center expert discusses Heritage Foundation’s 'Project 2025'

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

As of Wednesday, there are 111 days until Americans vote in the 2024 presidential election on Nov. 5. Between now and then, even more ink will be spilled regarding a policy blueprint drafted by the conservative Heritage Foundation called Project 2025, which was designed as a policy playbook for the next Republican administration.

The 900-page “Mandate for Leadership” includes specific policy proposals like cracking down on abortion, (including medical abortion), eliminating the Department of Education, and transforming civil service jobs within the federal government.

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Albany County DA Soares to mount write-in campaign after losing in primary

BY Spectrum News Staff Albany County

Albany County District Attorney David Soares, coming off a Democratic primary election loss last month, will mount a write-in campaign for the general election.

Soares, who has been DA for 20 years, lost the June Democratic primary election to Lee Kindlon. Ralph Ambrosio is running on the Republican line in the general election.

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Rep. Tim Kennedy calls on CDC to delay international pet travel rule

BY Brian Campbell New York State

Rep. Tim Kennedy has joined the bipartisan calls urging the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to delay new rules that would require dogs entering the U.S. from Canada to be older than six months and have a CDC-approved Dog Import Form, among other things.

“I am working across the aisle to ensure people can continue to cross the Northern Border with their canine family members,” Kennedy said in a statement. “This CDC policy places an excessive burden on U.S. citizens, especially in border communities like ours, which will contribute to increased processing time, longer border backups, and diminished economic returns. The CDC must delay implementing this rule until we find a more balanced approach.”

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Some Black NYC voters discuss their support for Trump

BY Ayana Harry New York City

As he runs for the White House again, former President Donald Trump is aggressively courting Black voters – a group that for decades has been the bedrock of the Democratic vote.

During his Manhattan criminal trial, Trump hosted rallies in New York City neighborhoods that are traditionally heavily Democratic.

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New school lockdown drill rules likely to slow other drill reforms

BY Kate Lisa New York State

State Assembly education leaders said Tuesday the Legislature should not rush to reduce the number of emergency drills conducted in New York schools each year after the Board of Regents adopted rules this week to mandate parents be notified of an exercise at least one week beforehand.

Starting this fall, about 6 million parents in the state will be informed in advance of a school lockdown or evacuation drills, according to new guidelines the Board of Regents voted to adopt Monday. Drills must also be age-appropriate for students and trauma-informed — reform education leaders have worked on after parents have complained about harmful drill practices including using fake firearms to imititate an active shooter emergency.

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New York GOP U.S. Senate candidate Mike Sapraicone at RNC meeting supporters

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

Queens native and long-time resident of Long Island Mike Sapraicone is meeting the Republican Party faithful in Milwaukee and trying to raise his name recognition within the GOP.

Sapraicone served in the NYPD for 20 years, working his way up to detective. According to his biography he “combated gang violence, illegal gun trafficking, and led high-profile homicide investigations”. When he retired from the force, he transitioned into private security, starting a 600-employee company that provides armed security services to the nation’s largest corporations.

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Mayor Adams gets fiery during weekly briefing

BY Kelly Mena New York City

A typical Tuesday at City Hall involves Mayor Eric Adams taking questions from the media.

But this week’s briefing was more intense for the mayor, who was hot under the collar, highly critical of the media and defensive of his administration.

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Following attempted assassination of Trump, political scientist weighs in on polarization of politics

BY Adriana Loh Rochester

ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Americans across all parties share many policy preferences, with overlaps on hot-button issues such as abortion, gun restrictions and even Project 2025.

“The types of issues that seem to get picked up are issues that seem to be what a lot of commentators refer to as cultural issues that cast one group against another group,” University of Rochester professor of political science James Druckman said. “So immigration is a classic example, right? And when these issues become moralized, it becomes much more difficult to find a middle ground.”

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Malliotakis rallies behind Trump running mate pick JD Vance

BY Spectrum News Staff and Joseph Konig New York City

A day after Ohio Sen. JD Vance secured his spot as former President Donald Trump’s running mate, New York Rep. Nicole Malliotakis lauded him as a “great pick.”

The Republican congresswoman, whose district includes Staten Island and part of Brooklyn, is currently attending the Republican National Convention in Wisconsin, where Vance was officially selected by delegates to be the party’s nominee for vice president.

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Staten Island community reflects on neighborhood changes 10 years since Eric Garner's killing

BY Samantha Liebman Staten Island

Tompkinsville barber Daniel Ewing said it seems like yesterday that Eric Garner was sitting in his chair, but it was July 17, 2014.

“He came, wanted to get it cut,” Ewing recalled. “He’d just get his normal cut, a shave. I laid him back. He immediately [falls] asleep because he has sleep apnea, so would get a kick out of that. After I’m done with him, he left. About 10 minutes later, I found out what happened.”

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Hochul brings up Trump attack during first roundtable talk about phones in schools

BY Kate Lisa New York State

Gov. Kathy Hochul on Monday condemned Saturday's assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, but tied political violence to one of her top legislative priorities next year: Cracking down on the use of smartphones in schools.

The governor Monday led the first of several roundtables to be held with educators across the state to shape a proposal to limit the use of smartphones in schools on the heels of signing new social media rules for minors into law.

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First female FDNY commissioner set to depart

BY Kelly Mena New York City

It’s been just a few days since Fire Department Commissioner Laura Kavanagh announced her resignation and it is still unclear who will replace her.

Mayor Eric Adams said Kavanagh will serve until a replacement is found.

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Rep. Nick Langworthy discusses Republican National Convention, Trump assassination attempt

BY Susan Arbetter and Seamus Lyman New York State

U.S. Rep. Nick Langworthy, who represents New York's 23rd Congressional District, joined Capital Tonight host Susan Arbetter on Monday to talk about the 2024 Republican National Convention, Donald Trump selecting Ohio Sen. JD Vance as his vice presidential running mate, political rhetoric and the attack on Trump.

The 23rd District is made up of parts of Western New York and the Southern Tier.

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New York lawmakers call for adjustment in campaign tone after assassination attempt on Trump

BY Jack Arpey New York State

State lawmakers reacted Monday to Saturday’s assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump, and death of bystander, Corey Comperatore, a former fire chief who spent his final moments protecting his family from gunfire.

Acknowledging heightened rhetoric in recent years on both sides of the aisle, they largely called for an adjustment in that tone.

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New York GOP Chair Ed Cox discusses JD Vance, Trump assassination attempt

BY Susan Arbetter New York State

New York state Republican Party Chairman Ed Cox joined Capital Tonight host Susan Arbetter from Milwaukee’s Fiserv Forum, the site of the 2024 Republican National Convention, to discuss the selection of Ohio Senator JD Vance as Donald Trump’s running mate.

Cox also reacted to President Joe Biden’s call to lower the “temperature” of national political rhetoric in the lead-up to the election.

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Hochul says she raised $7.3M in first half of 2024

BY Luke Parsnow New York State

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul raised more than $7.3 million in the first half of 2024, her campaign announced Tuesday morning, a record-breaking amount for any governor at this point in the election cycle.

Of that money raised, $5.8 million comes for Friends for Kathy Hochul for her re-election bid and more than $1.4 million for the state Democratic Party.

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New York state rolls out safety regulations to curb e-bike, lithium-ion battery fires

BY Spencer Conlin Albany

The growing popularity of electric bicycles are fueling concerns over the dangers associated with lithium-ion batteries. New York state is rolling out new guidelines to promote the safer use of the equipment.

More than 1.1 million e-bikes were sold across the country in 2022, four times the amount sold in 2019, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Paired with lots of sales are fires caused by their batteries, some of which have been fatal.

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Trump assassination attempt will shift 2024 election, N.Y. GOP chairman says

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City

New York state Republican Chairman Ed Cox said Monday that the assassination attempt on former President Donald Trump during a rally in Pennsylvania is likely going to reshape the landscape of the 2024 presidential election.

In an interview on “Mornings On 1,” Cox stressed that Democrats and Republicans should “absolutely” tone down their rhetoric, highlighting past remarks by President Joe Biden regarding Trump.

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N.Y. officials denounce political violence after Trump rally shooting

BY Spectrum News Staff New York City
UPDATED 9:17 PM ET Jul. 14, 2024

Reactions are pouring in from leaders across New York state after former President Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania on Saturday night after a shooting that killed at least one rally attendee.

The former president said he was "shot with a bullet" that pierced part of his ear.

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Officials, groups across N.Y. state react to attack at Trump rally

BY Adam Penale and Spectrum News Staff New York State
UPDATED 10:31 AM ET Jul. 14, 2024

Reactions are pouring in from leaders and organizations across New York state after Former President Donald Trump was whisked off the stage at a rally in Butler, Pennsylvania, on Saturday night after a shooting that killed at least one rally attendee.

The former president said he was "shot with a bullet" that pierced part of his ear.

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Hochul uses Biden's foreign policy experience, NATO summit to defend his candidacy

BY Jack Arpey and Luke Parsnow New York State
UPDATED 8:28 PM ET Jul. 12, 2024

New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Friday continued her staunch defense of President Joe Biden’s reelection bid as national Democrats splinter over the president’s future — this time using foreign policy and his briefing at the recent NATO summit as the backdrop for her argument.

“That’s who I want dealing with Putin and President Xi and everybody else and dealing with our challenges we have in the Middle East and with NATO. That is the person to preserve world order,” Hochul said of Biden Friday at an infrastructure announcement in Albany.

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Biden press conference did little to unify New York Democrats

BY Bernadette Hogan New York City

President Joe Biden’s first major press conference in more than six months did little to create unity among state Democrats who are bickering over his political future.

While Gov. Kathy Hochul continues to be a cheerleader for the president, some state delegates for the party’s national convention next month are hoping he’ll drop out of the race.

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Biden meets with Democrats in Congress to shore up support after Jeffries huddle

BY Justin Tasolides Washington, D.C.
UPDATED 5:00 PM ET Jul. 12, 2024

President Joe Biden met with groups of Democrats in Congress on Friday to shore up support amid as calls for the incumbent to step down from the ticket continue

The meetings come after a huddle with House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, which the New York Democrat detailed in a letter on Friday morning.

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