Karen Dewitt

NYS Capitol Correspondent

Ways to Connect

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo riding a motorcycle.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo | Flickr

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is trying to focus on positive actions in his public events in recent days as a federal investigation into his administration’s economic development programs continues.

Bernie Sanders speaks at the Egg in Albany
Karen DeWitt

Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders, made the second stop in his ‘Where Do We Go From Here’ tour in Albany Friday afternoon, where he told a small but loyal group of supporters that he’ll fight to get key items into the national Democratic Party platform, including a nationwide $15 minimum wage, and has been in talks with Hillary Clinton’s campaign over a greater focus on progressive issues.

  Some Homeless advocates are dismayed by what they say is Governor Cuomo’s failure at the end of the legislative session to follow through with promises to fund five years worth of new supportive housing and other services for the homeless. Their complaints come as the State Comptroller issues a scathing report on the state of homeless shelters across New York. 

The Capitol
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

Business leaders, particularly those in Upstate New York, say the 2016 legislative session, which recently concluded, was the worst for small businesses in quite some time.

Business leaders, particularly those in Upstate New York, say the 2016 legislative session, which recently concluded, was the worst for small businesses in quite some time.

United Soybean Board | Flickr

The New York State Farm Bureau is inserting itself  into a legal fight over whether farmworkers can be allowed to unionize.

Flickr/wadester16

What began in January as an ambitious reform package to address a wave of corruption at the Capitol, proposed by Governor Cuomo, dwindled to just two proposals by the time the session closed in the pre dawn hours of Saturday morning.  Here’s a look at what happened.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

New Yorkers will now be able to order a drink, or two, with their brunch, or in some cases breakfast, at bars and restaurants on Sunday morning.  The current law forbids sale of alcohol before noon on Sunday. But starting when Governor Cuomo signs the bill into law, alcohol will be available starting two hours earlier.

The Capitol
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

The legislature was closing down on an end of session  deal that would strip convicted lawmakers of their pensions, extend mayoral control of New York City schools for one more year, and legalize Daily Fantasy sports gambling.

With hours left in the 2016 legislative session, lawmakers have agreed on some items like permitting drinking at Sunday brunch, while some others, like ethics reform, are still unresolved. 

Flickr/wadester16

Hoosick Falls residents came to the Capitol on Wednesday to demand hearings on the after crisis that has revealed high levels of a toxic chemical in many people’s bloodstreams. They did not get hearings but did get a private meeting with a top aide to Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

Taxi Drivers Protest Against Uber
Karen DeWitt

With the legislative session down to the wire, groups for and against bills including expansion of Uber ride services and ethics reform came to the Capitol to make their voices heard.

Senator Kathy Marchione promotes bill to extend the statute of limitations to sue for toxic contamination, with, right to left, Hoosick Falls resident Michele Baker, Assembly sponsor John McDonald, and Environmental Advocates' Liz Moran
Karen DeWitt

As part of the push to end the legislative session by Thursday, state lawmakers representing the PFOA contaminated village of Hoosick Falls want to extend the statute of limitations to bring lawsuits against polluters.

 Alain Kaloyeros and Governor Cuomo
www.nydailynews.com

Until recently, Dr. Alain Kaloyeros, director of the SUNY Polytechnic Institute, has been the darling of the Cuomo administration. But now, he’s one of the figures at the center of federal and state investigations into alleged pay-to-play schemes for economic development projects, and is increasingly on the outs with the Cuomo Administration. 

Carl Heastie/ Twitter

Expectations for major ethics reform in the state legislature are low, even though both former leaders of the legislature are facing prison time for corruption. With just over a week to go before the session ends, only one measure — to take back the pensions of lawmakers who are convicted felons — seems to be in play.

With just a few weeks left until the end of the legislative session, a new poll finds New York voters are still craving reform in state government, and they’d rather not see a new law to expand state gambling by legalizing daily fantasy sports.

The state legislature ends its session for the year on June 16, and expectations are low for any major pieces of legislation to be resolved before the adjournment, as Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s administration faces increasing scrutiny from the U.S. attorney over economic development projects.

SUNY Poly’s Zero Energy Nano (ZEN) Building.
SUNY Polytechnic Institute

Probes into alleged corruption by former members  and associates of the Cuomo Administration deepened, as the Attorney General’s office conducted a raid at SUNY Polytechnic offices in Albany Thursday afternoon.

Governor Andrew Cuomo
Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

A board controlled by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the legislative leaders voted Wednesday to approve more than $485 million for the Buffalo Billion project. But there were some questions from board members about details of a program that is now under federal investigation.

Good government groups gather in Albany
Karen DeWitt

  It’s just over three weeks until the legislative session is scheduled to end, and hopes for reform are fading, during an unprecedented level of corruption in state government.

Andrew Cuomo
Matt Ryan

  With his former top aide facing a federal probe for potential conflicts of interest for consulting work, Gov. Andrew Cuomo has said twice now that he did not know what the former close associate of the Cuomo family was up to. Percoco left state service earlier this year for a job at Madison Square Garden.

alh1/flickr

Every day for the past two weeks, news reports have focused on a federal probe of Governor Cuomo’s Administration. It comes as both former leaders of the legislature are being sentenced to prison for corruption. Despite that Cuomo and legislative leaders say they are trying to achieve some agenda items in the closing weeks of the legislative session.

Farm workers in Albany.
Karen DeWitt

    

Advocates for farm workers are trying a new route to gain the right to form a union and be allowed benefits afforded to other laborers in New York. They are suing the state government. Governor Andrew Cuomo says he agrees with the farmworkers and won’t be defending the law in court.

Opponents of a planned fracked gas power plant in the Hudson Valley say they are hoping the US Attorney will investigate decisions made in the permitting process for the plan, now that it’s been revealed that the wife of a former top aide to Cuomo took payments from the lead engineering firm in the project, and that her husband is the subject of a federal probe.

A spokesman for New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo says the governor still plans to pursue an ethics reform package during the remainder of the legislative session, after news of a federal probe into actions by Cuomo’s former top aide and the governor’s ongoing economic development programs.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s explanation of some of the circumstances of a U.S. Attorney’s probe into his administration has left some answered questions.

A new poll finds that voters want corruption in state government addressed before lawmakers adjourn the 2016 session.

Gov. Cuomo
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, spoke for the first time since news broke that his former close associate is under federal investigation for possibly taking illegal payments from developers working on state economic development projects.

The New York State legislature has been on a three week break. In their absences, federal investigations into aides close to Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor  Bill de Blasio have intensified, spurring even more calls for reform.

Over the weekend, news broke that top aides to Governor Andrew Cuomo are being probed by the U.S. Attorney in connection with the Buffalo Billion economic development project. Here's a look at who’s been accused and what they are suspected of doing.

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