Governor Cuomo is maintaining a strong lead over potential challengers despite a sharp drop in his job approval rating among voters according to a new poll released Thursday.  The NBC/Wall Street Journal/Marist Poll has Cuomo leading just-announced Republican candidate Rob Astorino by a 65% to 25% margin.  The poll shows a 10 point drop in the percentage of voters who believe Cuomo is doing a good or excellent job, dropping to 42%, the decline attributed to minority voters & upstate voters.   The poll surveyed 658 registered voters and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points.


The state Assembly passed a bill this week that would delay portions of the Common Core education standards.  The bill would prevent schools from using Common Core-based test scores on staff evaluations for 2 years and prevents schools from using scores to decide whether a student will advance to the next grade.  The bill was sent to the state Senate where there is no sponsor on a companion bill.


Congressman Chris Gibson announced that the House of Representatives passed the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act.  Congressman Gibson stated that the bill permanently removes the home sale/new policy rate increase trigger for primary residences, Reinstates grandfathered rates by decoupling rate increases from FEMA remapping & Ensures greater solvency of the program by authorizing a $25 annual fee on residential policies and $250 on business/ non-primary residence policies, with the revenue placed in a reserve fund.


Firefighters from New York & Pennsylvania battled a blaze at 247 Grange Hall Road in the Town of Windsor early this morning.  Fire fighters from Windsor, Kirkwood, as well as Hallstead and Susquehanna Pennsylvania battled the blaze, the cabin was a total loss and the cause of the fire in under investigation by Broome County fire investigators, no injuries were reported.


The state Senate approved legislation to hold criminals responsible for the environmental damage occurring during their crimes. Sponsors said current criminal mischief statutes don’t address environmental devastation, so the bill would make crimes that result in large-scale environmental damage, a class C felony. The bill follows an incident in western New York in which criminals, who broke into an electrical transformer to steal copper, caused an oil spill that resulted in $1 million worth of environmental damage. The bill was sent to the Assembly.


The state Assembly passed a package of bills to increase access to childcare and establish paid family  leave. The measures include increased funding for childcare by nearly $400 million over the next four years and a one-time investment of $11 million for childcare subsidies. Another bill would require employers to provide a paid family leave insurance policy for employees, which would be partially funded through an initial weekly employee contribution of up to 45 cents.  The bill moves to the senate for consideration.


Daylight savings time means that clocks will be moved forward 1 hour, officially at 2:00 AM this coming Sunday morning, make sure to move your clocks ahead one hour when you go to bed Saturday night.


The Oneonta Farmers’ Market is currently accepting applications from local farmers and artisans at their open-air Saturday market, located in downtown Oneonta.  Applications are available at OneontaFarmersMarket.com. The Application deadline is March 15th; more information is available at 437-0158.  The Oneonta Farmers’ Market is held every 2nd and 4th Saturday of the month from 9am – 1pm in the Main Street Garage Walkway.



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