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Weekend in review

Jan 12, 2015 6:51 am
Some of the stories that made the news Fri., Jan. 9 through Mon., Jan. 12:

[caption id="" align="alignright" width="150"] Bob Megna (right)
with Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo in 2011.
(Courtesy Governor's Office.)[/caption]

Lauren Stanforth is reporting in the Times Union Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo announced several state appointments Sun., Jan. 11, including that budget director Bob Megna has become Acting Executive Director of the New York State Thruway Authority. Megna, who has been director for the New York State Division of the Budget since 2009, will take over the Thruway Authority amid questions over tolls, its operations and how it will pay for the new Tappan Zee Bridge. The appointment still must be confirmed by the state Senate. Cuomo also announced his secretary Lawrence Schwartz is entering the private sector, and is being replaced with Bill Mulrow. Mulrow, was most recently a senior managing director at Blackstone, a New York City-based asset management and advisory firm.

William J. Kemble reported in The Daily Freeman the four developers competing for state Public Service Commission approval to upgrade the electric transmission grid all filed revised proposals Jan. 7. The proposals include alternatives to adding transmission lines and towers in Greene, Columbia, and Dutchess counties. One of the Central Hudson Gas & Electric proposals is to remove existing towers instead of building parallel to existing towers, according to a company spokesman. The New York Transco filing contains up to nine alternatives for new lines and equipment that do not expand the existing corridor or require land acquisition. The Public Service Commission has received considerable local feedback about three proposals that would add a third 345-kilovolt electric power line largely following an existing corridor from Leeds in Greene County through Columbia County and points south. A fourth plan would largely use an existing corridor that runs from Hudson to Kingston and then south to Ramapo.

The Daily Freeman is reporting a public meeting will be held Wed., Jan. 14, of the Windham Planning Committee. The purpose of the meeting is to provide information about the state-sponsored New York Rising community reconstruction program. The program is intended to assist communities severely damaged by Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee, to facilitate community redevelopment and resiliency planning. The Windham committee will present the projects and initiatives it is recommending for implementation. The meeting will be held at Center Church, located at 5329 state Route 23 in Windham.

Two Columbia County brownfield sites are among 13 municipally owned locations across the state to receive $8.4 million in NY Works II funding for the cleanup and remediation of the sites for redevelopment, state Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Joe Martens announced Fri., Jan. 9. Funding will go to the former Hettling Property Site in Clermont, and the Foster Refrigeration Site in Hudson's North Bay. The sites are part of the state’s Environmental Restoration Program. The DEC will undertake the remediation work directly; the municipality will pay 10 percent of the project costs.