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Extras

GOP House leaders delayed their planned vote on a long-promised bill to repeal and replace “Obamacare,” in a stinging setback for House Speaker Paul Ryan and President Donald Trump in their first major legislative test.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo continued his attack on a Republican amendment in Congress that would end New York counties’ requirement to pay a portion of Medicaid, calling it unconstitutional and threatening to sue.

Trump’s administration is asking a U.S. court to quickly hear its appeal of a ruling that blocked the president’s revised travel ban.

Bill Hammond fact checks some of the many statements made by Cuomo and several members of New York’s congressional delegation about how the AHCA would impact the state.

Judge Neil Gorsuch, Trump’s pick to serve on the U.S. Supreme Court, faced a critical blow as Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer said he would join with other Democrats in attempting to filibuster the nomination — a move that could complicate his confirmation and lead to a total revamp of how the U.S. Senate conducts its business.

Schumer said he decided to vote “no” on Gorsuch, and will encourage fellow Democrats to do the same, because he thinks the 10th Circuit Court jurist has a “deep-seated conservative ideology” and lacks “a strong independent backbone.”

Israeli police arrested a 19-year-old Israeli Jewish man as the primary suspect in a string of bomb threats targeting Jewish community centers and other institutions in the U.S., marking a potential breakthrough in the case after an international manhunt with the FBI.

According to more than a dozen former colleagues and longtime friends interviewed on and off the record, former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara isn’t running for any public office – no matter how many reports to the contrary are published.

New York State’s private sector job count increased by 12,300, or 0.2 percent, to 8,045,400, a new all-time record high, according to preliminary figures released today by the state Department of Labor.

A New York City agency charged with investigating police wrongdoing forced an employee to resign after discovering that the employee had leaked the disciplinary history of the officer who placed Eric Garner in a fatal chokehold.

Cristina Cuomo, wife of CNN’s Chris Cuomo and sister-in-law of the governor, is starting a new media business and glossy magazine centered on the monied East End of Long Island.

Due to ongoing state budget talks, the governor won’t be making a trip to the Mohawk Valley this week, as planned.

The governor tweeted: “I am directing @nyspolice to coordinate with NYPD + FBI to determine if the senseless murder of Timothy Caughman is part of larger pattern.”

Donald Trump Jr. is facing criticism for a tweet sent in the hours after yesterday’s London attack that included a months-old comment from London Mayor Sadiq Khan that terror attacks are part of living in a big city, but left out that Khan was noting residents need to “be prepared.”

The Westbury schools superintendent, one of the highest paid educators on Long Island, has resigned with one more school year left on her five-year contract, Board of Education members confirmed.

Senate and Assembly lawmakers in their budget resolutions have come out against a proposal to add a Medicare surcharge for so-called high income public sector retirees, similar to what the federal government imposes.

Rensselaer County DA Joel E. Abelove filed a civil complaint in state Supreme Court that seeks to overturn an executive order Cuomo signed two years ago giving the state attorney general the authority to usurp local district attorneys in cases in which unarmed civilians are killed during confrontations with police.

In other news…In what’s being considered one of the biggest “wine and cheese busts” in recent Italian history, a group of 10 people have been arrested by police for stealing more than $250,000 in fine wines and gourmet cheeses.

Here and Now

The House is scheduled to vote on its bill to overhaul Obamacare, but it remains unclear whether the Republicans have enough votes to actually pass it.

A frenzied 24 hours filled with hushed deliberations on Capitol Hill, senior-level meetings at the White House and back-to-back phone calls with the president came to an end quietly and unceremoniously and with no deal in sight on the health care bill as a vote looms today.

But as of late yesterday, roughly 30 Republicans had said they either would vote against the measure or had not made up their minds. That left the bill’s sponsors short of the 216 votes needed, and last night, House Speaker Paul Ryan scheduled a meeting in the Capitol to try to win over skeptics.

Members of the House Freedom Caucus, a conservative group, said they’re still negotiating changes to the American Health Care Act with the president and remains cautiously optimistic they’ll get what they want.

The conservative Koch network is promising to spend millions of dollars to defeat the health care overhaul measure, calling it “Obamacare 2.0.”

But in trying to satisfy conservatives, the Trump administration and House Republican leaders risk jeopardizing support for the bill among more moderate Republicans.

Rep. Charlie Dent, a Pennsylvania Republican and co-chairman of the centrist Tuesday Group, said in a statement that the bill to repeal and replace the 2010 healthcare law “misses the mark” and he plans to oppose it.

Also planning to vote “no” is Staten Island Rep. Dan Donovan, the lone Republican member in the NYC House delegation.

Meanwhile, North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik still hasn’t said which side she’ll be on when the vote occurs.

Senate Democratic Minority Leader Charles Schumer did his best to drive a stake through the heart of the Ryan bill, warning in a conference call that cuts to Medicaid under the AHCA would be “devastating for upstate New York in a variety of ways.”

The Cuomo administration went on the defensive against an amendment pushed by Reps. Chris Collins and John Faso that would shift the counties’ Medicaid burden to the state, releasing detailed outlines of how much the move would cost each congressional district across New York.

The governor also warned of big tax hikes and/or service cuts if the House health care plan is enacted.

The plan blocks tax credits from going to policies that include abortion provisions. But under New York State rules, insurers are required to provide abortion coverage.

The president and vice president are scheduled this morning to meet yet again with the House Freedom Caucus members. (In the afternoon, the two plan to welcome truckers and CEOs to the White House and hold a listening session with them after the president lunches with Secretary of the Treasury Steve Mnuchin and Nelson Peltz).

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with no public schedule as state budget negotiations continue.

A full calendar of the day’s events appears at the end of this post.

Some non-health care headlines…

An Albany County grand jury indicted two Republican state senators – one sitting (Rob Ortt) and one retired (George Maziarz) – on felony election law violations, as part of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s probe of election law fraud in Niagara County.

A spokeswoman for Ortt acknowledged the senator faces three counts of offering a false instrument for filing. Just hours earlier, he voluntarily appeared before the grand jury probing the campaign finances of Maziarz and the Niagara County Republican Committee.

Ortt, who was elected to replace Maziarz in 2014 after the former senator’s abrupt resignation, will not resign and intends to fight the charges, according to his spokeswoman.

Ortt’s indictment, which a source said involves the disclosure of money that his wife earned while working for two vendors that were contracted by the Niagara GOP, compromises the Senate GOP’s hold on the majority.

Mewanwhile, former Niagara County Republican Chairman Henry Wojtaszek pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor as part of a deal involving the Maziarz case, according to two sources familiar with the situation. Details of his plea are yet to be revealed.

The Seneca Nation of Indians is ending all casino payments of more than $110 million a year to the state government effective next week, setting up a confrontation with the Cuomo administration.

More >

Maziarz, Ortt Indicted On Felony Election Law Violations

We’ve learned Republican State Sen. Rob Ortt and his predecessor, George Maziarz, have been indicted on felony election law violations. A spokeswoman for Ortt confirmed the Niagara County-based senator faces charges for three counts of offering a false instrument for filing.

The news of the indictment comes on the same day Ortt volunteered to testify in front of an Albany County grand jury convened by state Attorney General Eric Schniederman. A spokesperson for Ortt told us earlier in the day the senator volunteered to testify as part of an investigation surrounding Maziarz. A source said he waived immunity.

“As someone who fought and sacrificed for our country, I am sickened that a career politician and hyper partisan like Eric Schneiderman can concoct baseless charges to serve his own political agenda. One thing is clear: the only reason I am included in this is to make their case politically appealing,” Ortt said in a statement.

“As multiple news organizations have documented, Eric Schneiderman has been obsessed with using his political office to persecute his political enemies and protect his political allies. We look forward to telling voters the truth about Eric Schneiderman and exposing him for the power hungry, political opportunist he is and I will fight this ridiculous charge.”

Ortt is being represented in court by Albany-area attorney Steve Coffey. Calls to the attorney general’s office have not yet been returned.

A source close to the Ortts said he believes the charges stem from an agreement the senator’s wife Meghan had with Synor Marketing and Regency Communications. Meghan Ortt apparently did graphic design work and was under retainer with company.

The source said payments were made directly to Mrs. Ortt, and all the appropriate disclosures were made.

Extras

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer declined to take a position on the Medicaid amendment at the center of an ongoing battle between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Rep. Chris Collins, saying it is a distraction from the larger problem of the American Health Care Act, the Republican plan to replace Obamacare.

Bill Hammond runs the numbers and finds it’s possible that block grant funding of Medicaid won’t actually hurt – and perhaps might even help – New York.

Hammond also considers what would happen if the Collins amendment included New York City. (In short, it would shift a greater shift of the cost burden onto upstate and Long Island).

Staten Island Rep. Dan Donovan explained in an OpEd in his local newspaper why he’s voting “no” on health care reform tomorrow, saying that “recognizing that the status quo is failing isn’t, on its own, a compelling reason to vote ‘yes’ on the current replacement plan.”

North Country Rep. Elise Stefanik said she wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act but isn’t ready yet to embrace the GOP replacement, even though an amended version of the bill exempts the rural counties that she represents from helping fund state Medicaid costs.

Asked today how Rep. Pete King intends to vote, the Long Island congressman’s spokesman said his boss is still looking at the legislation and has not come to a decision, adding that there were many moving parts.

State Sen. Robert Ortt was scheduled to voluntarily testify before an Albany County grand jury today in connection with the ongoing probe of former state Sen. George Maziarz and his campaign finances that has also produced its first guilty plea.

Hempstead Town Councilwoman Erin King Sweeney, Rep. King’s daughter, appears on her way to becoming a media star.

An attack outside Parliament plunged London into turmoil, leaving at least four people dead and 20 injured, and prompting the hasty evacuation of the prime minister in a confusing swirl of violence that traumatized the seat of British power.

President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman, Paul Manafort, secretly worked for a Russian billionaire to advance the interests of Russian President Vladimir Putin a decade ago and proposed an ambitious political strategy to undermine anti-Russian opposition across former Soviet republics, The Associated Press reported.

House Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes said new intelligence reports show some conversations involving members of Trump’s transition team were collected by intelligence officials, but said those conversations appeared to be collected “legally” in the course of “normal, foreign surveillance.”

Major upstate and Long Island transportation system heads implored state lawmakers and Cuomo to boost by roughly $10 million their operating aid for the coming fiscal year.

Despite alleged and recurring pushback from Cuomo, the New York Farm Bureau said it hopes a long-sought, twice-vetoed tax credit for food donations will pass with the state budget next month.

The Legal Aid Society of Nassau County spent more than $400,000 without proper authorization and inappropriately used nearly $230,000 from its petty cash bank account, according to an audit released today by Nassau Comptroller George Maragos.

NYC Mayor de Blasio says he’s retaining the same election lawyer whose campaign-fundraising legal advice put him under the scrutiny of federal and state prosecutors.

After successfully repealing the sales tax on feminine hygiene products, Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal wants to make tampons and other feminine hygiene products free in low-income schools, homeless shelters and prisons.

A Washington, D.C. distiller has named a whiskey after Hillary Clinton – it’s called “Rodham Rye.”

Oneida County Executive Anthony Picente Jr. said the Oneida Indian Nation officials previously talked with him about wanting to expand in the region, so he took a chance and approached them about building a casino in Utica.

A Syracuse firefighter has been suspended without pay pending an investigation into his role in a hit-and-run car crash involving an investigator in the Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office.

When Biden (the former VP) met Biden (the Golden Retriever puppy).

Here and Now

President Donald Trump is scheduled this morning to “drop by” the Women in Healthcare panel hosted by Seema Verma, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and then will host a legislative affairs group meeting.

In the afternoon, Trump will meet with the Congressional Black Caucus executive committee. He’s scheduled to have dinner with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City and Albany with no public events scheduled as of yet.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is in New York City with no public schedule.

At 8:30 a.m., the NYC Food Policy Center at Hunter College hosts a seminar titled, “Inner Workings of New York City’s Water,” CUNY Institute for Sustainable Cities, Hunter College Silberman School of Social Work, 2180 Third Ave. second floor, Manhattan.

At 9:30 a.m., NYC Councilman Carlos Menchaca, United Neighborhood Houses and others call for the city to invest in English classes as low-literacy immigrant communities make sense of immigration policy and learn their rights, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 10 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul is spending the day promoting the governor’s Excelsior Scholarship affordability program, starting out at SUNY Binghamton, Innovative Technologies Complex, Engineering & Science (ES) 2008, 85 Murray Hill Rd., Vestal.

Also at 10 a.m., the MTA board holds a public meeting, MTA Board Room, 2 Broadway, 20th floor, Manhattan.

Also at 10 a.m., Sen. Rich Funke, Assembly members Francisco Moya and Phil Palmesano, New York Farm Bureau and others ask Cuomo to fund the “Farm to Food Bank” bill in the final state budget plan, state Capitol, Room 124, Albany.

Also at 10 a.m., Assemblymember Linda Rosenthal will unveil legislation to increase access to feminine hygiene products in New York, LCA Pressroom, Room 130, LOB, Albany.

At noon, Hochul will be at SUNY Cortland, Brockway Hall, 35 Graham Ave., Cortland.

At 12:30 p.m., Sens. George Amedore, Fred Akshar, and John DeFrancisco, along with Assemblymember John McDonald, will join school and municipal officials and business groups to call for the state budget to include “meaningful workers’ comp reforms,” Room 124, state Capitol, Albany.

Also at 12:30 p.m., Assembly members Jeffrey Dinowitz, Amy Paulin, Steve Englebright and Brian Kavanagh call for answers regarding the PSC’s Zero-Emissions Credit program, Legislative Office Building, LCA Room 130, Albany.

Also at 12:30 p.m., labor, community and faith groups call on Cuomo and the state Senate majority to join the Assembly in supporting fair-share tax policies on billionaires and millionaires in this year’s budget, Million Dollar Staircase, state Capitol, Albany.

At 1 p.m., a funeral service will be held for the late newspaper columnist Jimmy Breslin, Church of the Blessed Sacrament, 152 W. 71st St., Manhattan.

Also at 1 p.m., NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito and The Legal Aid Society call on Albany to enact reforms that fully raises the age of criminal responsibility in New York state, City Hall steps, Manhattan.

At 1:30 p.m., parents, students, educators and advocates from the Alliance for Quality Education call on Sens. George Amedore and Jim Tedisco to to fund “real” Foundation Aid for public schools and not “need-neutral” aid, lobby outside state Senate chamber, 3rd Floor, state Capitol, Albany.

At 2 p.m., dozens of people with disabilities, allies and advocates will rally at Rep. John Faso’s district office in order to press upon him the importance of preserving access to community based Medicaid services, 2 Hudson St., Kinderhook.

At 3 p.m., Hochul will appear at SUNY Oswego, Sheldon Hall Ballroom, 301 Washington Blvd., Oswego.

At 6 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina will attend a meeting of the Panel for Education Policy, which is set to vote on proposed school closings, The High School of Fashion Industries, 222 W. 24th St., Manhattan.

Also at 6 p.m., Manhattan BP Gale Brewer, NYC Councilwoman Margaret Chin, and Office of Administrative Trials and Hearings Commissioner Fidel del Valle host a town hall on how to navigate the city’s process for contesting summonses, P.S. 124’s Yung Wing auditorium, 40 Division St., Manhattan.

At 7:30 p.m., Mount Vernon Mayor Richard Thomas delivers his 2017 State of the City address, Mount Vernon City Council Chambers, 1 Roosevelt Square North, Mount Vernon.

Headlines…

Rep. Chris Collins, a Western New York conservative and top Trump ally, has long loathed Cuomo, and is now getting a chance to stick it to him – and the state – with his Medicaid health care reform amendment. (He wouldn’t even take the governor’s complaining phone call).

Collins’ amendment will let the counties off the hook for their collective $2.3 billion worth of annual local Medicaid payments. It’s aimed at winning over upstate GOP moderates who have complained about high property taxes, and immediately earned some derisive nicknames: the Buffalo Buyout, the Empire State Kickback, the Gotham Giveaway and the Tammany Haul.

“This is a huge win for our constituents,” insisted Collins, who worked on the amendment with freshman Capital Regin Rep. John Faso. “Year after year, Albany’s leadership relies on counties to foot the bill for New York State’s out-of-control Medicaid costs. Enough is enough.”

The Buffalo News deems Collins’ amendment “disastrous,” calling the savings to counties “blood money” and calling on members of Congress to reject the proposal.

That the national fight over Medicaid has suddenly focused on New York is not entirely surprising: The state has long had one of the nation’s most expensive Medicaid programs, with a generous and expansive definition of who qualifies for the joint state-federal program.

White House press secretary Sean Spicer said “it’s possible” President Donald Trump will seek more changes to the Republican health care bill before tomorrow’s expected House vote.

Trump personally warned wavering House Republicans that their jobs were on the line in next year’s elections if they failed to back a GOP bill that would overhaul Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act.

Cuomo announced 27 new hires, including a dozen people who either worked for former President Barack Obama, the Hillary Clinton presidential campaign or elsewhere in the federal government. Their hirings come as the governor is being talked up as a potential Democratic presidential candidate for 2020.

While Supreme Court nominee Judge Neil Gorsuch answered questions during his confirmation hearings, the U.S. Senate’s top Democrat, Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, questioned whether he should be confirmed at all amid an FBI investigation into Trump’s campaign.

Gorsuch sought to assure the Senate and the nation on that he would be a fair-minded and independent justice, and would not hesitate to rule against Trump if the law required it.

Trump is poised in the coming days to announce his plans to dismantle the centerpiece of former President Barack Obama’s climate change legacy, while also gutting several smaller but significant policies aimed at curbing global warming.

Spicer wouldn’t commit to whether Trump would address his now-debunked wiretapping claims, as ally Rep. Peter King, a Long Island Republican, urged Trump to walk back or explain the tweets.

A majority of young adults — 57 percent — see Trump’s presidency as illegitimate, including about three-quarters of blacks and large majorities of Latinos and Asians, a new poll found.

Rex Tillerson said the job of secretary of State wasn’t a role he sought out. “I didn’t want this job,” he told the Independent Journal Review in an interview during his recent Asia trip, adding that he took the post because his wife told him he was “supposed” to.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio said Cuomo, his long-time fellow Democratic political nemesis, should stick to running the state jail system as the city continues to work towards reforming Rikers Island.

More >

Extras

President Donald Trump warned House Republicans they will lose their seats in Congress if their plan to repeal and replace Obamacare fails, even telling one conservative member something along the lines of “I’m gonna come after you,” according to several people in the room.

White House spokesman Sean Spicer said that Trump “continues to meet with members and walk away with a very, very optimistic view of where the bill is headed.” Spicer also said he didn’t want to “rule anything out” with regard to further changes to the bill.

Hours after being personally upbraided by Trump over his opposition to the Republican health care plan, Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows delivered a message of his own: The legislation set for a vote on Thursday remains in real trouble.

Trump’s Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch said he has “offered no promises on how I’d rule to anyone on any case,” but also refused to say how he would rule on many issues, including abortion, gun rights and the travel ban.

Gorsuch declined to say whether Roe vs. Wade, the landmark Supreme Court case that legalized abortion, was correctly decided more than four decades ago, but did say that if Trump had asked him to rule in a certain way involving Roe, “I would’ve walked out the door. Not what judges do.”

Self-professed “dirty-trickster” Roger Stone, 64, is the best known of the Trump associates under scrutiny as part of an F.B.I. investigation into Russian interference in the election.

Healthcare groups are ramping up their opposition to the ObamaCare replacement bill ahead of a House vote this week.

Democratic Rep. Brian Higgins said he would back GOP Rep. Chris Collins’ plan for the federal government to hold back on some healthcare reimbursement if state leaders continue to take money from counties for Medicaid.

Collins’ plan, which has been added to the Obamacare repeal bill the House is likely to vote on later this week, would force New York to pick up the $2.3 billion tab that upstate and Long Island counties now contribute to the health care plan for lower-income state residents.

Bill Hammond takes a closer look at how much a full state takeover of the counties’ share of Medicaid would cost the state – and its taxpayers.

Rep. John Katko has postponed a public forum in Oswego that had been scheduled for Thursday after House Republicans decided to vote on the Obamacare repeal bill on the same night.
There’s truth to the president’s claim that his iconic Midtown skyscraper was wiretapped during the Obama ​a​dministration — only Trump wasn’t the target.

Cuomo is expected to travel to Oneida County on Thursday to make a major announcement about SUNY Polytechnic Institute and his $1.5 billion Nano Utica initiative.

The state Attorney General’s office has been tracking data breaches for more than a decade and last year saw a nearly 60 percent rise in data breaches.

Cuomo’s plan to bail out upstate nuclear plants could end up raising electricity expenditures for health systems around the state by at least $13.4 million, according to a report by a consumer utility advocacy group.

Donald Trump’s business, The Trump Organization, is in violation of New York City law, because it is not registered this year with the New York City Department of Housing Preservation & Development.

Ivanka Trump’s new office in the White House was cleared by White House lawyers and the federal government’s ethics watchdog, press secretary Spicer said.

CKE Restaurants Holdings Inc., parent company of Carl’s Jr. and Hardee’s, has named Jason Marker as CEO, succeeding Andy Puzder, who was supposed to be Trump’s Labor secretary but withdrew his name from consideration as opposition to his appointment mounted.

A $7.5 billion Kushner family skyscraper project at 666 Fifth Ave. in Manhattan has been complicated by Jared Kushner’s White House role.

Does the nation need to know more about the president’s brain? Alternative medicine promotor Deepak Chopra is the latest medical professional to suggest we do.

The possibility of a tax-code overhaul is casting a shadow over the $10 billion affordable-housing industry, which receives tax credits so valuable they often determine whether or not projects get off the ground.

A Syracuse University course on rhetoric and popular culture will focus on Trump next semester.

A​ NYC tax auditor ​was reportedly busted for pocketing nearly $250,000 in ​taxpayer funds​ ​—​ ​and using ​some of the stolen cash for ​breast enhancement surgery.

Keith St. John, a former counsel for the Senate Democrats and ex-Albany Common Council member, has joined JCOPE as director of ethics.

Tom Hanks, Alec Baldwin and Tina Fey are among the stars set to appear on Facebook Live as part of a March 31 fundraiser for the American Civil Liberties Union.

Another stop has been announced on U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s visit to the Capital Region next month. She will speak with students at Russell Sage College on April 4, and also receive an honorary degree from the school.

Hillary Clinton aide Huma Abedin and her son, Jordan, spent a day at Disneyland with actor Tony Goldwyn, who plays the president on “Scandal”, and one of his daughters. (The two became friends during the 2016 campaign).

Here and Now

President Donald Trump is scheduled to meet this morning with the Republican House conference at the Capitol. In the afternoon, he will host a legislative affairs group meeting.

In the evening, Trump will make remarks at the National Republican Congressional Committee March Dinner at the National Building Museum.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany and New York City.

At 8:30 a.m., Crain’s New York Business hosts its 2017 Arts and Culture Breakfast on new strategies for finding private and public allies featuring a discussion with NYC Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, Con Edison Conference Center, 4 Irving Place, Manhattan.

From 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., the New Yorker’s Family Research Foundation (NYFRF) is scheduled to hold its annual Legislative Day in Albany, hearing from a variety of elected officials and speakers. (Sens. Fred Akshar and Rubén Díaz Sr. as well as Assemblyman Dean Murray are scheduled to appear).

At 10 a.m., Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner and members of the Rebuild New York Now coalition urge New York State leaders to support funding in this year’s state budget, Mayor’s Office Lobby, Syracuse City Hall, 233 E. Washington St., Syracuse.

At 10:30 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio holds a press conference on Vision Zero, quadrangle outside Tillary Street between Adams and Jay streets, New York City College of Technology, 300 Jay St., Manhattan.

From 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., 1199SEIU healthcare workers at Albany’s Hudson Park Nursing Home, (C.N.A.s, recreation aides, dietary laundry and housekeeping workers), elected officials, clergy, community and labor allies hold an informational picket, 325 Northern Blvd., Albany.

Also at 11 a.m., LG Kathy Hocul makes a clean energy announcement, Albany Convention Center, 55 Eagle St., Albany.

Also at 11 a.m., elected officials and supporters of New York is Music will join with video game industry professionals from around the state to urge Cuomo to sign bipartisan legislation that supports the creation of thousands of jobs in the two industries, Million Dollar Staircase, stet Capitol, 3rd Floor, Albany.

At 11:05 a.m., Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan joins WCNY’s Capitol Pressroom with host Susan Arbetter to provide a budget update.

At 11:30 a.m., Assemblyman Charles Barron calls for some of the Excelsior Scholarship Fund to be allocated to create a $50 million Martin Luther King Jr. Scholarship Fund for low-income families at SUNY and CUNY, LCA Press room, Legislative Office Building, Room 130, Albany.

Also at 11:30 a.m., Senate Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins will be a guest on WCNY’s Capitol Pressroom.

Also at 11:30 a.m., NYC Councilman Jumaane Williams sits on the Police Accountability panel during the New York advisory committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights’ public meeting, CUNY School of Law Auditorium, 2 Court Square, Queens.

At 11:45 p.m., Cuomo makes an announcement, 633 Third Ave., 38th Floor, Manhattan.

At noon, former NYPD Det. Bo Dietl announces his independent run for NYC mayor, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 12:30 p.m., AG Eric Schneiderman will highlight the “drastic effects” Trump’s proposed budget cuts to the EPA will have on New York, 365 Bond St. (alongside the Gowanus Canal, an EPA Superfund site), Brooklyn.

At 1:30 p.m., the Legal Aid Society holds a press conference calling on the NYPD to release disciplinary documents, 60 Centre St., Manhattan.

Also at 1:30 p.m., a proclamation event declaring March 21st as Developmental Disability Awareness Day is held in special recognition of the Bfair2DirectCare Campaign, Common Council chambers, City Hall, Buffalo.

At 2 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina joins de Blasio and Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito for a press conference on immigration guidance for schools, Tweed Courthouse, 52 Chambers St., Manhattan.

At 3 p.m., Hochul promotes the governor’s Excelsior Scholarship affordability program, SUNY Adirondack, 640 Bay Road, Building C, Queensbury.

At 4 p.m., de Blasio holds a public hearing on several bills, and then signs them into law, Blue Room, City Hall, Manhattan.

At 5:30 p.m., Assemblyman Chad Lupinacci holds a $300-a-head fundraiser at the Fort Orange Club Trustees Room, 110 Washington Ave., Albany.

At 6 p.m., Assemblymen John McDonald, Peter Abbate (both $350) and Kevin Cahill ($500) hold fundraisers at the State Room, the Fort Orange Club and the Renaissance Hotel, respectively, Washington Avenue and State Street, Albany.

At 6:30 p.m., Ulster County Executive Michael Hein hosts a public forum on health care and the Affordable Care Act, Ulster County Legislative Chambers, Ulster County Office Building, 244 Fair St., Kingston.

Also at 6:30 p.m., Sen. Diane Savino holds a $750-a-head fundraiser at The University Club, 141 Washington Ave., Albany.

At 7 p.m., de Blasio appears on NY1’s “Inside City Hall.” (This interview is pre-taped).

Also at 7 p.m., de Blasio hosts a Greek Independence Day reception, Gracie Mansion, 88th Street and East End Avenue, Manhattan.

Also at 7 p.m., Sen. Joe Addabbo holds a $500-a-head fundraiser at El Mariachi, 289 Hamilton St., Albany.

Headlines…

Creating a treacherous political moment for President Trump, FBI Director James Comey testified before a House Intelligence Committee hearing that the agency is investigating whether members of Trump’s 2016 campaign colluded with Russia to influence the election.

Andrew Napolitano, the senior legal analyst for Fox News, has been temporarily sidelined following his unproved assertion last week that former President Barack Obama had asked for British assistance in spying on Trump.

White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer, in response to Comey’s testimony, maintained there’s “no evidence” of collusion with Russia – and said Trump is not withdrawing his allegation against Obama, either.

Western New York political consultant and conservative radio host Michael Caputo’s name came up during the House Intelligence Committee hearing, as members of Congress attempt to link him to Russian interference in the U.S. election. (He did work in Russia for six years, but denies any connection to this particular scandal).

House Republican leaders, trying to lock down the votes of wavering upstate New York Republicans, inserted a last-minute special provision in their health care bill that would shift Medicaid costs from New York’s counties to its state government.

The amendment, pushed by Buffalo Republican Rep. Chris Collins and supported by Reps. John Faso and Claudia Tenney, would impact the Empire State only, and could save could save county governments outside of New York City $2.3 billion a year.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s response (in part): “Congressmen Collins and (John) Faso are calling their amendment a ‘tax savings plan for the county.’ Really it’s a deathtrap as there is no way to make up the shortfall. The Upstate New York and Long Island economy will falter or collapse if the health sector is damaged.”

Collins’ response (in part) to Cuomo’s response: “I am happy to remind Governor Cuomo that it was his support of the absolute failure that Obamacare is that has gotten New York’s taxpayers into such a bind. The collapse of Health Republic in the New York Obamacare CO-OP cost taxpayers more than $265 million and left thousands of people looking for new coverage.”

In a sign of deepening concern among Republicans about the bill’s future, Trump will speak to the party’s lawmakers in Congress today about the healthcare overhaul.

Trump rallied supporters last night in Louisville, Kentucky, alongside Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell after meetings and phone calls in Washington aimed at steadying the troubled health care legislation.

While in Kentucky, Trump took a few whacks at free agent Colin Kaepernick — laughing as he told the crowd about a recent report that said no team would sign the NFL player because they feared a tweetstorm from the president.

Bitter partisanship marked the start of U.S. Senate confirmation hearings for Trump’s Supreme Court pick, Neil Gorsuch, as Democrats angrily condemned Republicans for refusing to act on Obama’s nominee last year.

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley says the Senate is aiming to confirm Gorsuch before a two-week break that starts April 10.

Rep. John Katko said that agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Endowment for the Arts and grants that fund Meals on Wheels may see their budgets trimmed, but Congress will not let them be eliminated entirely.

A California-based retailer filed a lawsuit claiming Ivanka Trump’s clothing company gets an unfair advantage because of its association with her name — and because of her name’s association with the current president of the United States.

Cementing her role as a powerful White House influence, Ivanka Trump is working out of a West Wing office and will get access to classified information, though she is not technically serving as a government employee.

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Extras

FBI Director James Comey confirmed that the bureau is investigating Russian attempts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election — including any links or coordination between members of Trump’s campaign and Moscow.

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called for Trump to apologize after Comey told Congress that there’s no information to support the president’s claims that ex-President Obama had Trump Tower wiretapped during the 2016 election.

Despite Comey’s testimony, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer indicated the president is sticking with his wiretapping allegations.

In a series of tweets, the president himself denied he colluded with Russia in the election, lashing out at Democrats ahead of today’s public hearing.

Longtime GOP consultant and Trump advisor Roger Stone says he welcomes the opportunity to publicly testify before lawmakers because neither he nor the president “have anything to fear in a fair, balanced inquiry.”

The proposed Republican Obamacare replacement plan would hurt the wallets of Syracusans more than residents of almost every other U.S. city, according to a study conducted by WalletHub.

Rep. John Katko doubled down on his opposition to the Republican plan to repeal and replace Obamacare, saying he didn’t see any scenario in which he would vote in favor of the replacement bill later this week.

Rep Claudia Tenney touted an amendment to the House plan, pushed by Rep. Chris Collins, that would relieve counties of their current local share of Medicaid, and said she won’t vote on the America Health Care Act if that doesn’t go through.

While the amendment stands a good chance of passing the House, it may not comply with the Senate’s strict rules and its ultimate fate is in the hands of the parliamentarian, who Collins met with last week to plead his case.

Trump’s U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch spoke for the first time at his Senate confirmation hearing, insisting he will – if appointed to the nation’s highest bench – strive for independence and integrity.

David Rockefeller, the U.S. banker, philanthropist, presidential adviser and heir to one of history’s most fabled fortunes, has died. At 101, he was the world’s oldest billionaire.

Sen. Mike Gianaris, deputy minority leader, said that for the second time in the past week, a vandal sprayed the outside of his Queens office with the words “Obama f—-t.”

Opaque pork barrel spending in the proposed state executive budget has increased by $2 billion this year, to $4.3 billion, the good-government group Citizens Union said in a report issued today.

Feminists battered Trump and U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in Lower Manhattan today over their plans to cut grant programs created under the Violence Against Women Act.

Members of the NYPD rescued a duck from the subway tracks in Brooklyn.

According to Trump’s budget director, “the only way to get truly universal care is to throw people in jail if they don’t have it.”

Trump’s son Eric is expecting his first child with his wife, Lara. The baby will be the president’s ninth grandchild.

Apartment hunters can live in NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Park Slope, Brooklyn home for $1,825 a month, according to a new ad on real estate site Streeteasy that describes the rental as a “sunny & sweet 1 bedroom in a private house.”

The de Blasio administration underestimated charter school tuition payments by $21 million to $136 million, according to the NYC Independent Budget Office.

The mayor nominated his former city planning chief Carl Weisbrod to sit on the MTA board.

Four of the five men who wrongly spent years in prison for the notorious 1989 rape of a Central Park jogger are urging Assembly Democrats to drop their opposition to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposals to cut down on wrongful convictions.

Stacey M. Robertson has been named the new provost State University of New York at Geneseo — a position that oversees 18 departments, two schools and other academic affairs at the college.

Here and Now

This morning, President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence meet in the Oval Office with House Speaker Paul Ryan, Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price, and Dr. Zeke Emanuel. (Prior to this meeting, the president sits down with Bill Gates).

In the afternoon, Trump and Pence hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi of Iraq, after which Pence will host the Pro-Life Caucus in his ceremonial office.

This afternoon, the president meets with Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. And then this evening, Trump holds a “Make America Great Again” rally in Louisville, KY. (Kentucky Exposition Center).

FBI Director James Comey and Adm. Mike Rogers, director of the NSA, will appear today before the House Intelligence Committee to speak about alleged Russian meddling in the 2016 elections, including potential connections between Trump’s inner circle and the Kremlin.

Also happening on the Hill this morning: The start of Senate confirmation hearings for U.S. Supreme Court nominee Neil Gorsuch.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in Albany with no public schedule as of yet. Both houses of the state Legislature are in session, and budget conference committees start meeting with an eye toward the April 1 deadline.

NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito is headed to Albany today to “meet with state leaders” on a variety of issues concerning the Big Apple.

At 9 a.m., NYC Council members Daniel Dromm and Vanessa Gibson speak at day one of the New York Advisory Committee’s U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, CUNY School of Law, 2 Court Square W., Queens.

At 10 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul attends the funeral of NY State Police Trooper Brian Falb, St. Peter’s Church, 114 Cornelia St., Plattsburgh.

At 10:30 a.m., health advocates, including the American Heart Association and national outdoor co-op REI; environmental advocacy organizations and Assemblywoman Pat Fahy announce their support for the governor’s Empire State Trail proposal, LOB Press Room (130), 198 State St., Albany.

From 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., Rebuild NY Now, a broad-based coalition seeking to raise public awareness about the challenges facing New York State’s infrastructure, will hold a rally and lobby day, LOB, Albany.

Also at 11:30 a.m., Rep. Carolyn Maloney, NOW-NY President Sonia Ossorio and others launch Take Rape Seriously NOW Campaign to protect women and preserve VAWA funding, Bowling Green Fountain, Broadway and Whitehall Street, Manhattan.

Also at 11:30 a.m., Citizens Union releases the latest edition of its report, Spending in the Shadows, on unspecified lump sum spending in the fiscal year 2018 executive budget, state Capitol, third floor, outside LCA Room, Albany.

At noon, clergy will hold a press conference and deliver a petition signed by over 100 faith leaders calling for the Millionaire’s Tax to be expanded and the 2 percent spending cap eliminated in order to invest in fighting poverty and inequality, War Room, 2nd Floor, state Capitol, Albany.

Also at noon, Assemblywoman Shelley Mayer and other Democratic female Assembly members discuss budget priorities and call for the inclusion of those priorities in the final enacted budget, LCA room, state Capitol, Albany.

Also at noon, Manhattan BPGale Brewer, NYC Councilwoman Margaret Chin, and OATH Commissioner Fidel del Valle announce their upcoming town hall on how to navigate the city’s process for contesting summonses issued by city enforcement agencies, Chinese-American Planning Council, 150 Elizabeth St., Manhattan.

Also at noon, Assemblyman Felix Ortiz presents a check to the American Italian Cancer Foundation, Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, 545 60th St., Brooklyn.

At 12:30 p.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina delivers remarks at the Hispanic Federation Education Summit, CUNY Graduate Center, 365 Fifth Ave., Manhattan.

At 2 p.m., NYC veterans voice their concerns about the issues they face in the city, including homelessness, substance abuse and lack of mental health services and job training, V.F.W. Post 3427, 136-06 Horace Harding Expressway, Queens.

At 4:30 p.m., Assembly and Senate General Budget Conference Committee meets, Hearing Room B, Legislative Office Building, Albany.

At 5 p.m., the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City hosts a panel discussion on the role social media plays in gun violence, with New York University’s Dr. Shabnam Javdani and others, John Jay College, Moot Court Room,524 W. 59th St., Manhattan.

At 5:30 p.m., Assembly members Dan Stec, Joe Errigo, Mark Johns, Angelo Morinello, Peter Lawrence, and Ken Blakenbush all have separate fundraisers in various rooms and for various ticket prices at the Fort Orange Club, 110 Washington Ave., Albany. (Assemblyman Marc Butler also has a fundraiser there at 5 p.m.)

At 6 p.m., Bronx BP Ruben Diaz Jr. and Brooklyn BP Eric Adams co-host public hearings of the “Gifted & Talented Task Force,” Bronx High School of Science, 75 W. 205th St., Bronx.

Also at 6 p.m., Assemblyman Michael Fitzpatrick has a fundraiser at el Mariachi, 289 Hamilton St., Albany.

At 7 p.m., Declaration 17 will host a public reading by signatories of the “Declaration of Independence in Opposition to the Policies and Practices” of Trump, a document signed by hundreds of concerned citizens, Society for Ethical Culture, 2 W. 64th St. and Central Park West, Manhattan.

Headlines…

Most Trump cabinet members do not yet have leadership teams in place or even nominees for top deputies. But they do have an influential coterie of senior aides installed by the White House who are charged — above all — with monitoring the secretaries’ loyalty.

President Trump’s approval rating sank to a new low of 37 percent yesterday, while 58 percent of those questioned disapprove of the job he has been doing since Jan. 20, according to the latest Gallup poll.

The man tasked with shepherding the Republican plan to replace Obamacare – Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price – defended Trump’s campaign promise to cover every American, saying that the multi-layered GOP proposal would give everyone access to the care they want.

As Republicans continue to debate their plan for health care overhaul, Sen. Ted Cruz, of Texas, said that he won’t vote for the bill as it stands because it will not solve the problem of rising insurance premiums.

The Republican chairman and ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee said new documents provided to Congress by the Justice Department provided no proof to support Trump’s claim that his predecessor had ordered wiretaps of Trump Tower.

Larry Johnson, a former intelligence officer, said he served unknowingly as a source of Fox News senior analyst Andrew Napolitano, who incorrectly used his information to back the claim that British intelligence wiretapped Trump Tower.

Trump told reporters that North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un was “acting very, very badly” hours after the rogue state test-fired a new type of high-thrust rocket engine.

White House budget chief Mick Mulvaney reiterated that Trump’s newly released budget — which would gut foreign aid, the EPA, crucial anti-poverty programs and scientific research — actually shows “compassion” to the mogul’s supporters.

Jeff Jones, president of the embattled ride-hailing company Uber, has resigned just six months after taking the job.

Democrats should avoid mimicking the obstructionism Republicans applied with former President Obama’s U.S. Supreme nominee, Merrick Garland — whose nomination they refused to act on at all — and instead ply Neil Gorsuch with critical questions, former NYC Mayor Mike Bloomberg said.

Gorsuch told students that “many” female job seekers abuse maternity leave and must disclose plans to become pregnant, a former attendee at the University of Colorado Law School has alleged.

Democratic state AG Eric Schneiderman has hired Howard Master, one of the top public-corruption prosecutors under former Manhattan U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, to focus specifically on issues involving the Trump administration.

First lady Melania Trump and President Trump’s 10-year-old son Barron will reportedly be moving to the White House in June, at the end of the school year. (The source: TMZ).

A Washington lawyer is suing the president for allegedly obscuring the extent of his personal debts on his federal financial disclosure form.

The Secret Service detained a man late on Saturday after he drove his car up to a checkpoint near the White House and said he had a bomb, according to the police, an episode that resulted in his arrest and in security on the grounds being beefed up.

Upset with a state Senate Republican budget plan to boost charter schools, the powerful city and state teachers union bombarded GOP senators last week with nearly 20,000 faxes and 1,500 phone calls warning the plan would damage neighborhood public schools.

IDC Leader Jeff Klein says NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s plan to build 90 homeless shelters across the city over five years is “a terrible idea.” (He prefers Assemblyman Daniel Hevesi’s rental subsidy proposal).

De Blasio struck out with Big Apple baseball fans yesterday as he rooted for his favorite team, the Boston Red Sox, during a spring-training game in Florida.

Bradley Tusk, a former Bloomberg aide who has been seeking – without success – someone to challenge de Blasio this fall, considered approaching Bharara to run, but lost interest after the former U.S. attorney’s office declined to bring any charges against the current mayor for his political fundraising.

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The Weekend That Was

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo of New York endorsed a plan to tear down a road built 50 year ago by Robert Moses, the Sheridan Expressway, and replace it with a tree-lined boulevard that could stitch the community of the South Bronx back together.

Hillary Clinton said she’s “ready to come out of the woods” and reengage in the political discourse.

Rep. Paul Tonko, a Capital Region Democrat, condemned the American Health Care Act, calling it a disaster and thoughtless. He accused the Republicans of rushing the bill through so that a vote can be held on Thursday – the seven-year anniversary of President Obama signing the Affordable Care Act.

Days before a pivotal vote, House Speaker Paul Ryan said he will seek changes to the GOP health care bill to provide more help to older people.

Rep. Chris Collins said he will work to preserve funding for the federal programs that serve Western New York and were targets of cuts in Trump’s budget, but also insisted it’s too soon to worry about the fate of popular programs.

U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed to fight Trump’s plan to slash anti-terror funding for NYC.

The president wants to eliminate $700 million in Homeland Security grants to law enforcement across the country, and New York would lose out on $190 million.

Donations to Meals on Wheels, a popular program that would see deep cuts in Trump’s budget, surged 50 times their daily rate after the White House proposed eliminating the Community Development Block Grant program.

Former Democratic National Committee chair and ex-CNN contributor Donna Brazile, in a piece published this weekend in Time magazine, acknowledged funneling inside info to the Clinton camp before two debates with Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.

The Trump administration is relying on Special Operations forces to intensify its promised fight against the Islamic State and other terrorist groups as senior officials embrace an Obama-era strategy to minimize the American military’s footprint overseas.

The administration rejected a statement from other leading economies that warned against the perils of trade protectionism, the latest sign of how its more combative approach to diplomacy could create rifts with U.S. allies and leave traditional partners in the dark about the direction of U.S. policy.

Trump has sowed chaos in his own West Wing, and talked or tweeted his way into trouble, over and over again.

Longtime Trump advisor Roger Stone says he has been asked by the Senate intelligence committee to retain any documents that could be related to its investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 election.

The president’s proposed budget could derail some big transit projects in Buffalo.

Bartenders at a West Village hot spot served up discrimination — with a liberal twist — refusing to serve a Philadelphia customer because he was wearing a “Make America Great Again” hat, according to a lawsuit.

After supporting Trump during the 2016 campaign, Patriots owner Robert Kraft flew on Air Force One today with the former businessman.

Donald Trump Jr. is the Trump who has not always seemed at ease with being a Trump, but he’s coming into his own.

Eric Trump says he “honestly” misses his father since he was elected to the White House, but insists the two no longer speak about business matters.

Citing an anonymous source, the NY Post reports former U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara is angling for a TV gig that could help launch a run for elected office.

Michael Kimelman, who served two years in prison for insider trading after getting caught in a web of prosecutions by Bharara, accuses the former U.S. attorney of only caring about “brownie points” and “easy headlines.”

Republican politicians in New York have been putting together short lists of potential candidates to replace the top U.S. prosecutors in New York City, a hub for terrorism, insider-trading and anticorruption trials.

Top Trump advisor Kellyanne Conway, whose Secret Service code name is “Blueberry,” is the subject of a New York magazine cover story.

Special Commissioner of Investigation for city schools Richard Condon recently announced the agency received 100 more pre-K complaints in 2016 than it did in 2015, a rise he attributed to the program’s wide expansion and “stringent reporting” of incidents.

CUNY, the largest urban public university system in the United States, is moving to fundamentally rework its traditional remedial programs.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio occasionally lectures his staff about what he calls teachable moments — mistakes they or others have made that provide an opportunity for reflection and a change of course, but when he was cleared in recent probes into his political fundraising, he declared it a vindication.

Ricardo Morales, the only NYC official fired in the just-concluded federal and state probes into de Blasio, says he was axed for one reason — to let other civil servants know that they had better keep their traps shut, or else.

New subway fares went into effect today, and New York City residents aren’t happy.

Bob McCarthy tracks the political tensions simmering just below the surface at the Buffalo Irish Center’s St. Patrick’s Day luncheon celebration.

RIP Jimmy Breslin, the New York City newspaper columnist and best-selling author who leveled the powerful and elevated the powerless for more than 50 years with brick-hard words and a jagged-glass wit. He died today in Manhattan at the age of 88.

Chris Churchill takes the Cuomo administration to task for condoning – or, at the very least, allowing – an OASAS official to “bully” long-time Albany addiction treatment advocate Father Peter Young.

Chris Bragg takes a look at the symbiotic relationship between the Senate Republicans and the state Independence Party, in which the former gets endorsements and the later gets jobs for local officials.

NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer and parents in the five boroughs are calling for a fix to a flawed Education Department computer system blamed for ruining the educations of kids with special needs.

Vanessa Glushefski, a Democrat, certified public accountant and legislative director for Assemblywoman Monica Wallace, said she will soon make a formal announcement of plans to challenge Republican Erie County Comptroller Stefan Mychajliw.

Chelsea Clinton has joined the board of Expedia.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie was back at KeyBank Center in Buffalo Saturday for Notre Dame’s second-round game against West Virginia, two days after he rooted the Irish to victory over a team from his home state.

The situation at Rikers Island has become “intolerable” and the site must be closed, Cuomo said — suggesting Wards Island as a possible location for a jail to help replace it.

The potential closure of Rikers Island has ignited the imaginations of city planners, developers, park advocates and transportation experts.

A multi-year effort to move customs formalities to the downtown Montreal train station, the Adirondack’s northern terminus, is moving ahead. Under the plan, U.S. and Canadian customs officers would clear passengers on their arrival and before their departure, and the trains would no longer have to stop at the border.

Buffalo attorney Steven Cohen, litigation chair at the law firm of HoganWillig, announced his candidacy for State Supreme Court today.

Since Jan. 1, 2016 there have been 389 exotic animal complaints in the Big Apple — and nearly half of those have been for keeping roosters, public records show.

Empire State Development has issued a “request for expressions of interest” to gather proposals for redevelopment of 288 acres in the Town of North Hudson, which is the centerpiece of Cuomo’s Gateway to the Adirondacks master plan for the former Frontier Town property.

Syracuse basketball coach Jim Boeheim has received an extension to coach beyond the 2017-18 season, the university announced.

Onondaga County is taking an unusual step to keep animals from falling into the hands of people who have abused or mistreated them.

RIP rock and roll legend Chuck Berry, who died at the age of 90.