State Police, the State Liquor Authority and the State University at Delhi conducted an Underage Drinker Initiative detail on Saint Patrick’s Day. 3 college students were used as operatives at bar checks in Stamford & Oneonta. John’s Tavern in Stamford, the Sip N’ Sail Tavern in Oneonta, & the Red Jug Tavern in Oneonta all passed, however State police arrested 23 year old Chelsea Jordan of Cobleskill with Unlawfully Dealing with a Child & Unlawful Sale of Alcohol to a Person Under 21, for serving alcohol to a minor at Legend’s in Oneonta. Jordan was issued for the City of Oneonta Court. Additional State Liquor Authority charges are pending against Legend’s.
State Senators Jim Seward & John Bonacic have been selected to serve on a new drug task force, to deal with the growing epidemic of Heroin. Federal statistics show that more than twice the amount of people admitted to heroin use from 2007 to 2012, The Senate Task Force on Heroin and Opioid Addiction will organize meetings across the state shortly.
New York is launching a program to expand access to short-term bridge loans to minority and women-owned business enterprises. Governor Cuomo said participating lenders are committing at least $20 million to the launch of the “Bridge to Success” program, where loans will be less than $200,000 with terms fewer than 2 years. The money will allow qualified businesses to hire staff, buy material and purchase equipment. More information is available at governor.ny.gov.
Governor Cuomo announced support from more than 225 elected officials for his plan to cut property taxes, as property taxes are one of the single greatest financial burdens for New Yorkers. The Governor’s plan would freeze property taxes for 2 years, in communities where the local government also takes steps to consolidate and share services, and would provide relief based on an individual homeowner’s ability to pay.
If you’re a cigarette smoker in New York, odds are that your purchase was illegally smuggled in from another state to avoid paying taxes. A new study by the Tax Foundation said 56.9% l of cigarettes sold in New York were illegally imported, which is directly related to the state’s $4.35 per pack tax, which is the highest cigarette tax in the nation. Cigarette taxes are even higher in New York City, $5.85 per pack.
The state’s new health exchange reports more than 1 million people have completed applications for insurance, while more than 717,000 have enrolled for specific coverage. The Department of Health said enrollment, for individual and family coverage since October, includes 343,000 New Yorkers, in the 16 commercial and nonprofit insurers in the exchange, and more than 374,000 in government-funded Medicaid. Open enrollments continue through next Monday for 2014 coverage at state-approved rates. Applicants with incomes up to 400% of the federal poverty line are eligible for tax credits to help offset premium payments. More information is available at health.ny.gov.
Firefighters have responded to a fully involved structure fire at 159 west Main Street in Stamford this morning. The building is known locally as the Cyr building, formerly the Rexmere Hotel, several area fire companies have responded. WCDO will have further details as they become available.
Governor Cuomo announced that the New York State Board for Historic Preservation has -recommended the addition of 21 properties, resources and districts to the State and National Registers of Historic Places. The State Review Board recommended 1 local site, which is the Loomis Family Farm in Oxford. The farm was settled in 1801 & includes an 1832 stone farmhouse, a large dairy barn, and other smaller farm buildings. More information about the recommended sites in online at paththroughhistory.ny.gov.