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Weekend in review

Feb 01, 2016 12:02 am
Some of the stories that made the news Fri., Jan. 29 through Sun., Jan. 31

Jillian Nadiak reported in the Register-Star the Columbia County Democratic Committee on Sat., Jan. 30, chose native son Will Yandik over Zephyr Teachout as its preferred candidate in the 19th Congressional District race. News of the endorsement was first reported by blogger Sam Pratt, Saturday afternoon. Yandik, a Livingston Town Board member and fourth-generation co-owner of a family farm, and Fordham law professor Teachout made presentations to the committee at a meeting held in a packed Kinderhook Town Hall. Both candidates made 30-minute presentations outlining their top priorities in the district and then took questions. Following the presentations, the committee unanimously endorsed Yandik by acclamation. After hearing from four candidates, including Yandik and Teachout, Democratic committee chairs in the 19th Congressional District endorsed Teachout in a closed door meeting held in Hudson on January 16.

Scott Waldman reported at Politico New York the state wants to maintain its active nuclear facilities, with the exception of Indian Point, until federal licenses expire. State officials are now considering a Clean Energy Standard that would preserve nuclear facilities as it grows its renewable energy portfolio. On Thu., Jan. 28, at a state hearing on energy and environment policies in the budget, Public Service Commission chairwoman Audrey Zibelman said the state views nuclear plants as an important source of power for the coming decade, at least, as the renewable industry grows. Yet even as Cuomo administration officials speak of nuclear as an important part of the state’s energy mix, they have carefully crafted policy that excludes Indian Point. Cuomo has repeatedly said he wants to close the Westchester plant, which is still profitable, because it presents a safety risk to New York City.

Jim Planck reported in The Daily Mail approximately 70 of Greene County’s Democratic leaders and party faithful met potential 46th Senate District candidate Sara Niccoli last week. Niccoli is the Palatine town supervisor, labor-religion coalition leader, sheep farmer and resident of Stone Arabia, a hamlet in Montgomery County. Niccoli is still exploring the potential run against incumbent first-term Republican George Amedore and came out to speak at the Greene County Democratic Committee's annual reorganization meeting, held in Cairo. Earlier the same evening, she spoke with the Ulster Democratic Executive Committee. Niccoli said she wants to use her success in Palatine developing a coalition government at the town level, and to bring that concept and skill to state office. As a senator, Niccoli said, she would bring her experience bringing together people of very disparate points of view, and pledged to run a grassroots campaign. Greene County Democratic Party Chair Doreen Davis said Niccoli was well received by the group. She said Niccoli is a strong candidate with a good background. She said Niccoli provides the voters of the 46th district with a viable, real choice.

Matthew Hamilton reported at Capitol Confidential state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman announced last week the concert and sports ticket industry has prevented New York consumers from being able to purchase event passes, if tickets are available at all. The multi-year investigation revealed that for top concerts, a sizable chunk of tickets are never made available to the general public. And an average of 54 percent are reserved for industry insiders, such as promoters and artists. The investigation also acknowledged that venues and ticket sellers tack on extra fees and that third-party brokers resell tickets well above face value. In a statement issued by his office, Schneiderman said the crackdown on those who prey on ordinary consumers will continue and that this investigation was just the beginning.

Michael Ryan reported in the Windham Journal plans are underway for the construction of senior housing in Prattsville. A public hearing on the site plan for the 44-unit residential complex, called The Mews, will be formally presented to the Prattsville Planning Board Wed., Feb. 3. The project is being developed by Kearney Realty Group. If approved by the board, the construction of sewer and water systems and an access road off of Washington Street, would begin after the official groundbreaking this summer. The complex will contain 36 one-bedroom and eight two-bedroom senior units, plus 16 cottages. Cooperstown-based Bassett Hospital will be a partner in the accompanying medical center, which will be located nearby. The Mews would attract as many as 161 new residents to Prattsville, as well as two permanent employees. The project is expected to cost $15 million.

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