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Assemblyman Dov Hikind compared Jewish leaders remaining on the sidelines or supporting the administration on the Iran nuclear deal to leaders who were silent when 6 millions Jews were murdered during the Holocaust.

LG Kathy Hochul ate a sausage sandwich at the New York State Fair with a teacher activist, who showed up hoping to protest the governor. (He’s spending time with family, but will attend the fair sometime later on in its 12-day run).

It’s Hochul’s birthday!

Democratic 2016 frontrunner Hillary Clinton called most of the Republican candidates Donald Trump “without the pizazz or the hair.”

…she also compared anti-abortion Republicans to terrorists and “people who don’t want to live in the modern world.” (Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and the RNC had something to say about that).

Former Gov. George Pataki is sticking to his strategy of trying to raise his profile by hammering Trump whenever possible.

A new Quinnipaic poll shows VP Joe Biden performing a little better than Clinton against the leading GOP candidates in a general election matchup, and his favorability is higher than that of any candidate – Democrat or Republican.

Democratic leaders are increasingly frustrated by Clinton’s failure to put to rest questions about her State Department email practices and ease growing doubts among voters about her honesty and trustworthiness.

GOP operative Roger Stone’s highly public breakup (assuming that’s what it was) with Trump has returned him to the spotlight, allowing him to put his “extraordinary wardrobe” on display.

Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan will address a Westchester County business group in White Plains next month.

Airbnb has hired Chris Lehane, a veteran Democratic operative with ties to both Cuomo and de Blasio, as it battles New York lawmakers who say the lucrative online business lets users break state and city laws and is fueling the city’s affordable-housing crisis.

Jamie Romeo is the new leader of the Monroe County Democratic party, but longtime Assemblyman David Gantt, who has clashed with the party’s leadership at times, says he doesn’t know who she is.

Douglas Lyall, who for more than 15 years kept a constant vigil for his missing daughter Suzanne, has died.

Tioga Downs, the lone bidder for a Southern Tier casino, will get an opportunity to make its case before the state Gaming Facility Location Board next month, and then the board will hold a public hearing in Binghamton on the proposal.

Rep. John Katko gave his only ticket to the Pope’s congressional address to his wife, but will conduct an on-line lottery for some of the 50 seats assigned to his office on the West Lawn of the Capitol.

NYC Council candidate Rebecca Lynch admitted that many people in the eastern Queens district she hopes to represent feel that her former employer, NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, “does not care” about their issues—though she argued that sentiment predates the current mayor.

Facing increasing pressure to curb erratic scheduling practices, Gap announced that it would stop requiring employees to make themselves available for last-minute shifts.

The New York City Campaign Finance Board released its official NYC voter guide for the 2015 primary elections on Sept. 10.

The state is launching a specialized police unit to help crack down on sexual assault on college campuses, but some victims’ advocates are wary, saying law enforcement has not been effective in tackling the issue in the past.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is taking some personal time to be with his family and has no public schedule.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is in the city had holds a closed-press meeting with Madison Mayor Paul Soglin at City Hall. He’ll also hold a closed-press roundtable discussion with elected officials and community leaders on resiliency in Lower Manhattan. This evening, de Blasio will travel to Connecticut, where his son, Dante, is preparing to start his first year at Yale.

At 8 a.m., Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie attends a UNICON meeting with Majority Leader Joe Morelle, 180 Linden Oaks, Rochester.

At 9:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul cuts the ribbon to kick off the 2015 State Fair, New York State Fairgrounds, 581 State Fair Boulevard, The Dairy Barn, Gate 2, Syracuse. (It’s Governor’s Day, but Cuomo won’t be attending the fair until later on in its run).

At 11 a.m., East NY Tenants, Tenant Rights Campaign, New York Communities for Change, Legal Aid Society and Legal Services of New York City launch anti-displacement campaign on behalf of tenants, 650 New Jersey Ave., Brooklyn.

At 11:35 a.m., Rep. Dan Donovan presents a flag that flew over the U.S. Capitol to the Marlborough Senior Center, 2298 West 8th St., Brooklyn.

At 11:30 a.m., Heastie tours Eastman Business Park, 200 West Ridge Rd., Rochester.

At 12:30 p.m., Rep. Tom Reed, state Sen. Tom O’Mara and Assemblyman Bill Nojay hold press conference to discuss the Iran Nuclear Agreement, Big Flats Community Center, 476 Maple St., Big Flats.

At 1 p.m., Heastie tours Golisano Children’s Hospital, 601 Elmwood Ave., Rochester.

At 2 p.m., de Blasio attends the OEM Preparedness Fair, Alfred E. Smith playground, corner of Catherine Street and Catherine Slip, Manhattan. (A media availability will follow).

Also at 2 p.m., Donovan hosts a Sandy-related press conference, 1145 Olympia Blvd., Staten Island.

At 2:30 p.m., Heastie meets with Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren, City Hall, 30 Church St., Rochester.

At 3 p.m., Heastie visits the Genesee Street Brownfield Site, 66-92 Genesee St., Rochester.

At 3:45 p.m., Heastie visits Quality Vision International, Inc., 850 Hudson Ave., Rochester.

At 4 p.m., NYC Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito joins representatives from the city Department of Housing, Preservation and Development, The Community Preservation Corporation and El Barrio’s Operation Fightback Inc., and others to host a neighborhood preservation HelpDesk for multifamily building owners, El Barrio’s Artspace, Community Gallery, 215 E 99th St., Manhattan.

At 4:45 p.m., Heastie visits the Public Market, 280 North Union St., Rochester.

At 6 p.m., Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and New York City Department of Parks Commissioner Mitchell Silver host ribbon cutting ceremony, Soundview Park Amphitheater, Bronx.

At 6:40 p.m., Heastie throws out the first pitch at a Rochester Red Wings game, Frontier Field, 333 Plymouth Ave. N, Rochester.

At 7 p.m., the Manhattan Young Democrats host their 7th annual “Young Gets It Done” awards, Up & Down, 244 W. 14th St., Manhattan.

Headlines…

Presidential candidates from both parties as well as the White House expressed sympathy for the death of two journalists in Virginia who were killed live on air, though some Democrats focused their messages on changing gun laws.

The NYPD will double the number of officers who patrol Times Square in the wake of calls from NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio to curb the proliferation of costumed characters, topless women and other panhandlers who seek tips from tourists there.

De Blasio created a second panel, (more like a “subgroup” of his original task force, a spokesman said), to focus on areas beyond Times Square – from Coney Island to the Battery in lower Manhattan and other parts of the city where the panhandlers have been seen soliciting tips.

Assemblyman Matthew Titone says sugar is dangerous and New Yorkers are likely consuming far more than they realize because foods and drinks aren’t labeled in a way that is easy to understand. He wants to ban the sale of large sugary drinks to children.

Amid a Wild West of consumer-ratings sites, North Shore-LIJ Health System is one of only a few hospitals in the U.S. to take matters into its own hands. The Long Island-based hospital network began posting online ratings of its doctors this week, making it the first such organization in the metropolitan area to do so.

Add Rep. Carolyn Maloney’s name to the list of New York congressional delegation members who will be voting “no” on the Iran nuclear deal. “I’m against it,” she said.

Officials with the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of New York said they’re in “serious discussions” about having the pope’s motorcade travel through part of Central Park during his visit to the Big Apple next month, enabling more people to catch a glimpse of him.

The new superintendent for Buffalo Public Schools, Kriner Cash, opened his first board meeting by saying nice things about the city. Then he highlighted the district’s low high school graduation rate, saying: “We have got to do better.”

Hillary Clinton says she hasn’t had any back-channel discussions with VP Joe Biden’s camp about whether he will challenge her in the 2016 Democratic primary. She said he’ll leave it to Biden to decide amid “the grief and the heartbreak” of the death of his son, Beau, whether to run.

Biden told members of the Democratic National Committee during a conference call that he may not have the “emotional fuel” to run for president.

More >

Extras

Two Virginia journalists – Alison Parker, 24, and Adam Ward, 27 – were killed in an attack this morning that was broadcast on live TV. The shooter was a disgruntled former employee of the station, who also shot and killed himself.

The NYPD is forming a new unit to patrol in Times Square and address quality-of-life issues amid growing concern over the chaotic jumble of costumed characters and topless women in its pedestrian plazas.

Hillary Clinton called for stricter gun control in the wake of the shooting.

Businessman Donald Trump reportedly has told several top Republicans that he will swear off the possibility of an independent bid and commit to running his presidential campaign under the party’s banner.

American Pharoah and his companion pony, Smokey, arrived at Albany International Airport today on “Air Horse One,” and then headed for Saratoga, where the Triple Crown winner will race in the Travers this Saturday.

LG Kathy Hochul, not Gov. Andrew Cuomo, will open the 2015 New York State Fair tomorrow. (So is it time to re-name “Governor’s Day”?) He plans to attend the fair some time later in the 12-day run, a spokesman said.

Strong Hearts Cafe, a Syracuse vegan/vegetarian restaurant, revealed its menu today as the first vegan food stand at the fair. (So sad we aren’t going this year).

Rep. Carolyn Maloney, a member of NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s task force to combat toplessness in Times Square, said that whatever rules the panel comes up with should apply equally to the body-painted female “desnudas” and to the Naked Cowboy, who has performed nearly nude in the area for years.

Empire State Development has yet to reject a company for participation in the state’s Start-Up NY program.

Cuomo is pushing for funds to lure GE’s corporate HQ back to New York, even as critics say the company – a major political donor – hasn’t adequately cleaned up toxic chemicals it dumped in the Hudson River for decades.

Clinton announced a multi-step plan to grow the economy and local services in rural areas, marking the latest effort for the Democratic frontrunner to firm up support for her candidacy in Iowa and broaden her appeal outside major metropolitan areas.

Seneca Falls is set to host a forum next Monday to discuss which great American woman should be featured on the redesigned $10 bill, US Sen. Charles Schumer announced.

Former Rep. Anthony Weiner says a constitutional convention “may be the only way to bring order to the broken relationship between the mayor and the governor.”

New York’s tax climate for key business sectors – with the notable exception of manufacturing – ranks at or near the bottom among 50 states, according to a new study by the Tax Foundation and the KPMG accounting firm.

Residents in the South Bronx used to be big fans of de Blasio. Now, not so much.

State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli penned an OpEd in the Times Union urging the state Legislature to pass comprehensive campaign finance reform in New York, including public funding of elections for all state offices.

A former CEO of two Schenectady nonprofit entities devoted to substance abuse treatment and housing has admitted filing false reports in excess of $600,000 with the Office of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Services.

Just in time for the start of the school year, Cuomo is warning students off buying fake IDs, saying buyers are in danger of identity theft since many come from overseas on-line sellers.

Every company has its reply-all email meltdown. Today was Thomson Reuters’ turn.

Whether it’s Lyme disease, damage to gardens or motor vehicle collisions, some people in Central New York and other communities are fed up with deer, and some are taking action.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City with no public events scheduled. He’s taking a break to spend personal time with his family. NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio is also in the city with no public schedule.

At 8:30 a.m., NYC Schools Chancellor Carmen Farina does a live interview on Univision’s Despierta America (Ch41).

At 10 a.m., Federal Reserve Bank of New York economists will provide an update on regional economic conditions, discussing NYC, the state, New Jersey and Puerto Rico, 33 Liberty St., Manhattan.

At 10:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul, Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Cuomo advisor Christine Quinn and other female elected officials mark Women’s Equality Day by calling for passage of an Equal Rights Amendment, 49 E. 92nd St., Manhattan.

At 11 a.m., Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie tours Trillium Health Care with Assemblyman Harry Bronson, 259 Monroe Ave., Rochester.

Also at 11 a.m., Democratic candidate for Albany County Executive Dan Egan will “expose Albany County Department of Aging malfeasance as well as address incumbent Dan McCoy’s lies about the privatization of the Albany County Nursing Home,” Albany County Nursing Home, 780 Albany Shaker Rd., Albany.

At 11:15 a.m., Auschwitz Holocaust survivors and elected officials, including Assemblyman Dov Hikind, and Sens. Jesse Hamilton and Simcha Felder condemn the Iran nuclear deal outside Rep. Jerry Nadler’s office, 201 Varick St., Manhattan.

At 11:30 a.m., Rep. Louise Slaughter tours General Motors’ Rochester plant, General Motors, 1000 Lexington Ave., Rochester.

At noon, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams will host about 400 senior citizens from across the borough for his second annual Senior Day, celebrated this year with a “Seniors by the Sea” theme, Kingsborough Community College, Mac rotunda, 2001 Oriental Blvd., Manhattan Beach.

Also at noon, Rep. Chris Gibson meets with local seniors and staff from the Delaware County Office for the Aging at the Delaware County Senior Picnic, 4-H Camp Shankitunk, Arbor Hill, Delhi.

Also at noon, Rep. Elise Stefanik holds a “Coffee with your Congresswoman” event followed by a media availability (at 1 p.m.), 583 Broadway St. E., Cape Vincent.

At 12:30 p.m., Heastie mets with labor leaders, Hilton Garden Inn Rochester/University & Medical Center, 30 Celebration Dr., Rochester.

At 1 p.m., Shooters Committee on Political Education President Steven Aldstadt and Aaron Price, director of Gas Odyssey, hold a press conference calling for upstate New York to secede to prevent economic decline and limits on personal freedoms, 276 Washington St., Binghamton.

At 1:15 p.m., Stefanik tours Metalcraft Marine, 583 Broadway St. E., Cape Vincent.

At 2 p.m., Heastie meets with members of the Rochester Monroe Anti-Poverty Initiative Workforce Development Workgroup, Monroe Community College’s Applied Technologies Center, 2485 W. Henrietta Rd., Rochester.

At 3:15 p.m., Heastie tours Rochester Institute of Technology, 1 Lomb Memorial Dr., Rochester.

At 3:30 p.m., Hochul and The Alliance for Coney Island host a roundtable to discuss Cuomo’s economic development strategies, 1205 Surf Ave., 2nd Floor, Brooklyn. (Media availability to follow).

At 3:45 p.m., Stefanik holds a media availability after meeting with Save the River on Plan 2014, 409 Riverside Drive, Clayton.

At 4:45 p.m., Hochul, Sen. Diane Savino, and NYC Councilman Mark Treyger tour businesses along the Coney Island boardwalk to promote tourism, 1205 Surf Ave., Brooklyn.

At 6 p.m., Hamilton, Assemblyman Dov Hikind, and NYC Councilman David Greenfield join advocates to call on New York congressional delegation members to oppose the Iran nuclear deal, in front of Jewish Children’s Museum, 792 Eastern Pkwy., Brooklyn.

Also at 6 p.m., Heastie joins Assembly Majority Leader Joseph Morelle to meet with community leaders, Constellation Brands, 207 High Point Dr., Victor.

At 7 p.m., IDC Leader Jeff Klein hosts Chubby Checker and celebrates the 55th anniversary of his song “The Twist,” Loreto Park, Morris Park Avenue between Haight and Tomlinson avenues, Morris Park, the Bronx.

Headlines…

For the many congressional Democrats in the region who haven’t taken a stance on President Barack Obama’s nuclear deal with Iran, political pressure has intensified as the White House courts their support and the pact’s opponents escalate their lobbying efforts.

The state corrections department named a new superintendent for the Fishkill Correctional Facility in Beacon – Robert Cunningham – and vowed to review “safety concerns” after the April death of a prisoner who inmates said was handcuffed and badly beaten by a group of corrections officers.

Republican 2016 contender and Florida Senator Marco Rubio left Buffalo with about $250,000 following a fundraiser last night at the Snyder home of Amy Habib. Rubio visited New Era Cap company as well as attending the Amherst event, which drew around 100 or so people.

The announcement that Paul McCartney – Beatle, knight, songwriting icon, living, breathing, you’ll-pay-anything-to-see-him, rock ’n’ roll legend – will play in Buffalo for the first time seems to elevate the city to first-tier concert destination status.

The state’s top elections watchdog quietly filed a lawsuit last month that could set a precedent curbing candidates’ ability to accept coordinated donations through the so-called “LLC loophole.” The civil suit pits Risa Sugarman, the chief enforcement counsel for the state Board of Elections, against the campaign of Shirley Patterson, a little-known candidate who ran unsuccessfully for a Brooklyn state Assembly seat in a May special election.

The Cuomo administration is losing another policy adviser. George Haggerty, deputy secretary for financial services, confirmed in an email to POLITICO New York that he will be leaving in the weeks ahead.

The teachers union and state officials argued that a lawsuit challenging New York’s tenure policy should be tossed because Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature approved a new law tightening teacher accountability.

Developers of nearly 200 small buildings in New York City have flouted the terms of tax breaks they received by failing to place their apartments on the rent-stabilization rolls, state and city officials said.

Times Square has seen a sharp decline in traffic injuries in the years since New York City closed off portions of Broadway to build a pedestrian plaza, city data show.

Construction of new office space in New York City is on track to hit a 25-year high this year and almost double that built in 2014, reflecting increasing employment and low interest rates, according to a new report by the New York Building Congress.

Former Assemblyman Darryl Towns is the latest top-level Cuomo administration staffer to leave for a job in the airline industry as the governor plans a $4 billion overhaul of LaGuardia Airport.

Eight groups representing the Democratic Party’s progressive wing plan to call on Hillary Clinton today to disavow the controversial practice of Wall Street firms paying bonuses to executives who leave for government jobs.

More >

Extras

Hillary Clinton holds a strong lead against her Democratic rivals in Iowa despite lingering concerns about her honesty, according to a new Suffolk University poll.

As questions continue to dog Clinton about her use of a private email account, a spotlight has landed on Huma Abedin, the aide so often at her side that she has been called the former secretary of state’s “surrogate daughter.”

Will LGBT voters abandon Clinton if VP Joe Biden gets into the race?

Clinton’s campaign has received commitments from four Democratic state parties – including in the crucial proving ground of New Hampshire – to enter joint fund-raising agreements with the campaign just as the nomination battle is beginning.

New Yorkers intending to vote in next year’s presidential primaries should beware of a little-publicized – but very relevant – deadline that looms a month and a half away.

Fox Network President Roger Ailes issued a lengthy statement castigating GOP presidential frontrunner Donald Trump for reviving his attacks on anchor Megyn Kelly, and demanded an apology, which was not forthcoming.

Two powerful trade organizations that control the fate of a controversial property-tax exemption known as 421-a will begin determining the program’s future as soon as late September.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s former chief of staff, Laura Santucci, was paid six figures by the city’s tourism agency for her role in the administration’s ill-fated bid to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

Freshman Assemblywoman Roxanne Persaud Read will be the Brooklyn Democratic Party’s pick to run for disgraced former Sen. John Sampson’s seat at a meeting this Thursday evening.

The aging Dunkirk power plant’s $150 million plan to transition from coal to natural gas is officially in limbo, less than two years after Cuomo and local officials held a news conference heralding the deal.

The Huntley Station power plant in the Town of Tonawanda, which employs 79 people, would be shuttered next March under a plan NRG Energy is submitting today to the state Public Service Commission.

The Cuomo administration is engaging John Mack, an ex-Wall Street titan and informal adviser to the governor, to help persuade General Electric to move its headquarters to New York.

Syracuse’s 20-year-old lead program will close by the end of the year because federal officials rejected the city’s latest application for funding. City officials learned today they will not receive the $3.5 million they requested.

Former KKK leader David Duke is a Trump supporter.

New Public Employees Federation President Wayne Spence has turned his attention to securing a new contract. But it would seem any challenges for a revote from Susan Kent could be a thorn in his side for a while to come.

Rejecting a Manhattan GOP leader’s interest in having Democrat charter school maven Eva Moskowitz run for NYC mayor as a Republican in 2017, other Republican county chairs said that they would prefer to have a registered member of their party challenge Mayor Bill de Blasio.

A group of bankers, politicians, horse breeders and real estate brokers is gaining momentum as they push Cuomo to re-privatize three New York thoroughbred tracks.

Paul McCartney will take the stage at Buffalo’s First Niagara Center for his “Out There” tour on October 22nd at 8:00 p.m. (Local leaders are psyched).

The leaders of two state Assembly committees that address poverty held an invitation-only meeting in Rochester yesterday, and the media wasn’t on the guest list.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in the New York City area. According to his press office, the governor “is taking personal time to spend the week with his family.”

At 7:25 a.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio appears on Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning.

At 9:50 a.m., Rep. Elise Stefanik holds a media availability, Jefferson Community College Veterans Orientation, 1220 Coffeen St., Watertown.

At 10 a.m., oral arguments will be made in Wright v. New York – a lawsuit challenging the state’s teacher tenure law, 18 Richmond Terrace, Staten Island. (A press conference will follow).

Also at 10 a.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams will be joined by a local resident recovering from an addiction to K2, a common street name for synthetic marijuana, to highlight the human impact of its usage across the five boroughs, Brooklyn Borough Hall rotunda, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

Also at 10 a.m., the NYS Gaming Commission kicks off a day-long forum to discuss the policy and practice of furosemide (Lasix) administration in racing, Empire State College, Saratoga Springs.

At 10:30 a.m., LG Kathy Hochul attends a press conference to kick of Sen. David Carlucci’s 4th Annual Rockland County senior fair, Rockland Community College Fieldhouse, 145 College Rd., Suffern.

Also at 10:30 a.m., Rep. Steve Israel, Dr. Calvin Butts III and others hold a press conference to call for passage of the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act, SUNY Old Westbury, Rte. 107, Old Westbury

At 11 a.m., the NYC Office of Emergency Management brings its mobile office to Harlem to discuss emergency preparedness, coordination and planning with residents, 125th Street and Adam Clayton Powell Blvd., Manhattan.

Also at 11 a.m., the NYC Athletic Commission members hold a public meeting, New York Department of State, 123 William St., Manhattan.

At 11:30 a.m., Stefanik attends a business lunch with Development Authority of the North Country, Hilton Garden Inn, 1290 Arsenal St., Watertown.

At noon, Hochul tours Tours Raymour and Flanigan’s distribution center, 30 Dunnigan Rd., Suffern.

At 1 p.m., the Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty, the NYC Department of Education, elected officials and others hand out 4,000 free kosher lunches to children from low-income families, Gravesend Park, 18th Avenue and 56th Street, Brooklyn.

Also at 1 p.m., Yonkers Mayor Mike Spano and Kidde Fire Safety will come together at a senior center in Yonkers to donate long-lasting smoke alarms to the city’s senior citizens, 680 Bronx River Rd., Yonkers.

Also at 1 p.m., the Assembly will hold a public hearing to examine the impact of poverty on children and their families and the barriers it creates in achieving self-sufficiency, Council Chambers, Binghamton City Hall, 38 Hawley St., Binghamton.

At 2 p.m., Stefanik and Rep. Chris Gibson will meet with soldiers and families from the 10th Mountain Division to hear feedback on proposed changes to the military retirement system, Fort Drum, Jefferson County.

At 2:30 p.m., Rep. Tom Reed will visit Watkins Glen International to review progress of the ongoing repaving project and learn more about the economic impact of the race track, 2790 County Route 16, Watkins Glen.

From 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., Albany City Hall hosts a “back-to-school night,” with organizations that provide after-school programs, City Hall rotunda, Eagle Street, Albany.

At 5:30 p.m., New York City Voter Assistance Advisory Committee members hold a public meeting, 100 Church St., Manhattan.

Headlines…

After a three-day rout that erased nearly $3 trillion in value from stocks globally, markets today showed signs that selling pressures were easing. Volatility continued to dominate early trading in Asia, but many regional markets swung from losses to gains for the first time in days. Stocks in Europe opened higher.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo (of Albany) sent a letter to the editor of The New York Times yesterday, rebutting an editorial that called him “to come to the table” in an effort to build a new rail tunnel under the Hudson River.

US Sen. Chuck Schumer is asking the feds to hand over $550 million in yet-unclaimed Sandy-relief funds to Amtrak so the agency can make direly needed repairs to the beleaguered East River rail tunnels.

The four-year employment contract for incoming Buffalo School Superintendent Kriner Cash makes him the highest paid leader of any major urban school district in the state, but does not lay out any specific performance expectations.

New York’s first openly gay state legislator, Assemblywoman Deborah Glick, says it’s time to appoint an LGBT person to the state’s highest court.

About a year and a half after he was appointed, state Gaming Commission chairman Mark Gearan has stepped down, citing growing responsibilities in his full-time job as a college president and other roles.

In a recent letter to Cuomo, Albany County DA David Soares said he would discontinue his office’s involvement in the death of Donald “Dontay” Ivy, a mentally ill man who died after an April confrontation with Albany police. But it’s unclear if he has followed through with that vow in the week since he sent it.

According to NYRA’s financial report on the three months ending June 30, NYRA earned $11.2 million of operating income from racing operations for Belmont Stakes Day. That was $2.3 million more than budgeted despite $693,000 in losses due to increased operating expenses.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio defended his plans to build market rate housing on land owned by the NYCHA, saying his administration’s proposal is markedly different from one advanced by his predecessor that failed to gain traction amid criticism from public housing residents.

The mayor launched a $300 million project to replace crumbling roofs at NYCHA developments – aiming to get to the root of rampant problems with leaks and mold.

NYC GOP leaders searching for a challenger to topple de Blasio in 2017 are so excited that Democratic charter-school champion Eva Moskowitz is weighing a run that they’re open to letting her enter the race as a Republican.

More >

Extras

The White House said President Obama may offer an endorsement in the Democratic primary, which could pit his former secretary of State against his vice president.

A 19-year-old man was charged by police with firing an air gun that injured a New York City police officer in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s security detail outside of Gracie Mansion, the mayor’s official residence.

In an email to a supporter, Buffalo school board member Carl Paladino warned newly appointed superintendent Kriner Cash not to “mess with me and be fitted for his career ending casket” and slammed the rest of the board as “incompetent idiots.”

Former Gov. George Pataki: “It is not right to have topless women basically trying to sell pictures in Times Square. It is wrong, it’s illegal and it should be stopped.”

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer called the idea of destroying the Times Square plaza “preposterous,” even as hand-wringing continues over the growth of topless women and costumed characters panhandling in the crossroads of the world.

Investigators spent nearly 20 minutes re-enacting the prison escape made June 6 by two convicted killers at the Clinton Correctional Facility in Dannemora.

A lawyer for Huma Abedin, a top adviser to Hillary Clinton, has accused Charles Grassley, chairman of the US Senate Judiciary Committee, of damaging Abedin’s reputation through “unfounded allegations” about her time at the State Department.

Day after sweltering Arkansas day, an anonymous RNC staffer toils inside the Clinton Library, opening file after file in search of the detail from the past that’ll sink the Democratic frontrunner.

Cathy Calhoun, a top aide to state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, has jumped to the Cuomo administration, a rare instance of cross pollination between two officials whose relations are normally frosty. Also, Elana Sigall has left her position with the administration as deputy secretary for education after less than a year.

Francisco “Frank” Tallarino Sr., the 74-year-old Democratic minority leader for the Oneida County Legislature, was arrested Saturday and charged with second-degree coercion and three counts of fourth-degree stalking.

While just about everyone on Wall Street were in various stages of losing it this morning following the stock market’s slide, state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, who controls the massive state pensions system, said he’s keeping cool.

It looks like Trump lost a lot of money on the stock market over the past several days.

Two and a half years after the Cosmos bid to build a soccer stadium at Belmont Park, the head of New York State’s AFL-CIO, Mario Cilento, urged Cuomo’s economic development chief to get the project done already.

There will be no election for the $192,191-a-year job of Suffolk County treasurer this November, leaving candidates that Republicans and Democrats nominated with no race to run.

Former Mike Bloomberg aide Jonathan Capehart agrees with Rupert Murdoch that the former NYC mayor/billionaire should run for president, but doesn’t expect him to do so.

not everyone agrees that Bloomberg would be a viable White House contender.

For the first time, the Food Bank of Central New York will hold a food drive on opening day of the New York State Fair.

Buffalo is the only NFL city without Uber, though the ride-share app company is trying to change that.

New York state wants to develop a “hut-to-hut” trail system in the Central Adirondacks, the DEC has announced. It would link lodging and public lands in the towns of Newcomb, Minerva, Indian Lake, Long Lake and North Hudson.

Here we go again.

Here and Now

Gov. Andrew Cuomo is in New York City with no public schedule.

At 11:30 a.m., Rep. Kathleen Rice and the recently appointed director of the FEMA National Flood Insurance Program, deputy associate administrator for Insurance and Mitigation Roy Wright, will hold a press availability to answer questions and discuss superstorm Sandy recovery, Long Beach Boardwalk at National Boulevard (outside the Allegria Hotel), Long Beach, Long Island. (At 9:30 a.m., they will meet with state and local officials in a closed-press event at the Long Beach city manager’s office).

At 1 p.m., Rep. Chris Gibson will visit Opportunities for Otsego and discuss the agency’s work to combat poverty, 3 W Broadway, Oneonta.

At 1:30 p.m., the Assembly Committees on Children and Families and Social Services hold a closed-press roundtable discussion on childhood poverty, the first of several meetings on the issue, Council Chambers, Rochester City Hall, room 302-A, 30 Church St., Rochester.

At 2:30 p.m., NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio will make an announcement related to roof replacement at NYCHA, Queensbridge South Houses, 21st Street and Queens Plaza North, Queens.

At 3 p.m., Assemblyman Keith Wright and a working group on Housing Development Fund Companies meets, Harlem State Office Building, 7th floor, 163 W. 125th St., Manhattan.

At 6 p.m., Sen. George Amedore, Gibson, and Montgomery County Executive Matt Ossenfort will partner with Catholic Charities Care Coordination Services to host a free community narcan training, Canajoharie High School, 136 Scholastic Way, Canajoharie.

Also at 6 p.m., Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams raises the Dominican flag over Brooklyn Borough Hall in honor of the upcoming Brooklyn Dominican Parade, 209 Joralemon St., Brooklyn.

Headlines…

Business bigwigs — some with ties to Gov. Andrew Cuomo — have reportedly begun discussing the possibility of bankrolling an early effort to go after NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio in hopes of further weakening him in advance of the 2017 elections.

A cop in de Blasio’s security detail was shot with a pellet gun last night outside Gracie Mansion. The officer and her partner were getting out of an unmarked police car near the Upper East Side residence shortly after 7 p.m. when she “felt pain in the lower back.”

The mayor and his family “were not in harm’s way at all,” police said.

Two teens are in custody in connection with the pellet gun shooting.

Over 300 topless protesters bashed de Blasio’s effort to banish the bare-breasted painted ladies of Times Square during a march yesterday.

The group of women participated in the annual Topless Parade from Columbus Circle to Bryant Park, while some men took pictures and video.

The parade was among dozens of such events staged in about 60 cities on the worldwide GoTopless Day.

The open-air malls in de Blasio’s New York may be filled with an unusual number of aggressive performers — heavily or barely costumed — but he is not the first mayor to wrestle with the consequences of turning streets into pedestrian spaces.

The NYT editorializes: “Times Square is not going to hell, or anywhere near hell’s vicinity. Mr. de Blasio’s enemies have been predicting New York’s downfall since before the mayor took office. He should not be feeding their false narrative by panicking over some localized crudeness.”

Hundreds of Nassau County contracts worth a total of nearly $10 million have been awarded in recent years at amounts just dollars below the threshold for legislative approval. Many of the pacts went to politically connected companies without competitive bidding – and were never openly discussed, debated or voted on, a Newsday investigation found.

A Brooklyn-based home health-care service, Empire State Home Care Services, has agreed to pay $6 million as part of a settlement with AG Eric Schneiderman to resolve allegations of improper Medicaid billing, highlighting the state’s heightened attention to fraud in this growing industry.

Buffalo School Board member Carl Paladino already is complaining about new Superintendent Kriner Cash’s appointment and says he will not support Cash unless he hires certain people for cabinet positions. Paladino is drawing battle lines, not just with the new superintendent, but with the new state education commissioner.

Republican 2016 candidate Donald Trump said the potential entrance into the race of VP Joe Biden won’t make any difference because the former US senator is the same sort of Democrat as Hillary Clinton, though she’s “damaged” because of her “email thing.”

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The Weekend That Was

State Police, working on behalf of the state Labor Department, descended on Times Square Saturday as the topless painted ladies and their male managers who have been preying on tourists for tips were questioned on whether their basic business practices are on the up and up.

New York State’s economic development agency quietly passed a resolution Thursday morning that seeks to prohibit any “behavior” that “has a tendency to disrupt commercial activity” in and around Times Square – a move clearly aimed at ridding the area of the topless panhandling women.

A 69-year-old woman hung out topless in Times Square on Saturday in bare-chested solidarity with the beleaguered desnudas.

NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio’s position against the women’s presence in Times Square has left some politicians – including some of his allies – scratching their heads, with some labeling his approach as sexist.

Calling it the first time in 40 years that a city police officer has been shot, Chief John Tedesco outlined this morning how a carjacking suspect allegedly shot two officers before being shot multiple times himself and Tasered. The suspect, now identified as Thaddeus Faison, 39, of Albany, died from his injuries.

Rochester police have arrested a 32-year-old city man for allegedly firing at the vehicle in last week’s drive-by shooting at the Boys & Girls club on Genesee Street. But whoever fired into the crowd — killing three and injuring four others — remains at large, authorities said Saturday.

American Pharoah is going to run in the Travers Stakes at Saratoga Race Course on Saturday. Trainer Bob Baffert said as much this morning after the first Triple Crown winner in 37 years worked six furlongs in a time of 1:10.98 (by Baffert’s stopwatch) at Del Mar Race Track in San Diego.

On “Meet the Press” this morning, Democratic California Gov. Jerry Brown said the email scandal surrounding Hillary Clinton is “like a vampire”, adding: “She’s going to have to find a stake and put it right through the heart of these emails in some way.”

Former Bush administration Attorney General Michael Mukasey said Clinton is indeed the focus of a US Justice Department probe, calling the argument that the probe is about her private email network when she was secretary of state “ridiculous.” “It is not a political witch hunt,” he said.

Vice President Joe Biden’s team has settled on a one-month window from Sept. 1 to Oct. 1 in which he could potentially announce plans to run for president.

Former New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson said he has patched up his “disagreement” with Clinton from the 2008 election and will be supporting her in her 2016 bid for the presidency.

Stephanie Yazgi, de Blasio’s controversial new “immigration organizer,” was being paid by private funds before being brought on staff — countering his excuse that taxpayers had to pay her $150,000 salary because an outside grant fell through.

No one has announced a plan to run against the mayor in 2017. But as his poll numbers sag during a summer marked by feuds and missteps, NYC’s political chattering class is buzzing about the contenders who might contemplate a Democratic primary challenge.

Town of Oyster Bay officials helped a private businessman secure loans by arranging with lenders to have the town pay in case of defaults – potentially exposing taxpayers to millions of dollars in liabilities, a Newsday investigation has found.

Florida Senator and 2016 GOP contender Marco Rubio will swing by Buffalo Tuesday night for a fundraiser at the Snyder home of Amy Habib, and organizers hope it will raise more than $250,000 for his campaign.

Two-thirds of all freshmen enrolled in WNY’s four-year colleges and universities took out student loans in the first year of their education, according to a Buffalo News analysis. The increases in borrowing amounts outpaced the average rise in costs of attending the schools.

New REBNY boss John Banks broke bread recently at the Capital Grille in Midtown with state Sen. Mike Gianaris, who heads the Democratic conference’s political arm. Is the real estate association having second thoughts about backing the Senate Republicans?

The 101st Precinct in Far Rockaway, an overgrown former beach resort dotted with Robert Moses-era public housing at the city’s eastern edge, is an early testing ground of a model of so-called community policing that fell out of favor in the 1990s as crime levels hit all-time highs.

Inmates at Bare Hill Correctional Facility were kept outside in February without hats or gloves while officers tried to gain information about an assault, which allegedly led to at least 10 inmates getting frostbite, lawsuits allege.

Undocumented children’s cases are overwhelming New York courts.

Eight months after a small Finger Lakes farm town was recommended for one of three New York casino licenses, the battle over the $425 million development is ratcheting up again. A recent appeals court ruling involving state environmental review law has suspended site construction in Tyre, between Rochester and Syracuse along the Thruway.

Orange County Democratic Chairman Brett Broge is asking a state official to investigate Sen. William Larkin Jr.’s failure to report his campaign contributions and expenditures from January to July, an accounting that he was supposed to file by July 15 and is now more than a month overdue.

The amount of unclaimed funds returned to recipients hit a new record in the last fiscal year, and in some counties the amount claimed has soared over the past five years.

NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer wants President Obama to declare the plaza outside the Stonewall Inn a national monument.

Village of Ocean Beach taxpayers could owe $750,000 in superstorm Sandy disaster recovery funds that authorities want back because the FEMA says a sewer plant and two buildings in the barrier island community were underinsured.

US Sen. Charles Schumer has joined state and Long Island officials who have expressed alarm over a federal report that says dredged sediment from Connecticut rivers could be safely buried in the Long Island Sound for up to 30 years.

Extras

Facing extraordinary pressure, Rep. Jerry Nadler became the lone Jewish Democrat from New York to endorse the president’s proposed agreement with Iran, which would lift economic sanctions in exchange for Iran’s taking steps to abandon a path to nuclear arms.

New York City’s film commissioner, Cynthia Lopez, has tendered her resignation, and will leave the de Blasio administration in late October to pursue other opportunities in the production industry.

Success Academy founder and C.E.O. says she is interested in running for mayor, and that she will “let everyone know” when she decides whether to run against de Blasio in 2017.

With Congress expected to vote next month on President Obama’s proposed nuclear deal with Iran, nearly half of New York’s congressional delegation remains undecided or did not respond to questions about their position on the agreement.

The Federal Bureau of Prisons could “jeopardize the safety of young children and families” if it moves forward with a proposal to open a halfway house in Syracuse’s Tipperary Hill neighborhood, Rep. John Katko warned.

Westchester County is tightening up rules for visitors to the county jail, a month after 13 inmates got sick on synthetic marijuana that was allegedly slipped to a prisoner by his visiting wife.

Prosecutors are urging a federal judge to throw the book at ex-Brooklyn Assemblyman William Boyland Jr. when he is sentenced next month for soliciting bribes.

Cuomo announced that attendance at New York State Park campgrounds is on pace for another record-setting year, and reminded New Yorkers that many of the state’s finest camping facilities are open for fall camping well into the autumn months.

The driver involved in the May 30th accident that killed 3-year-old Maksym Sugorovskiy and critically injured his 5-year-old sister in Buffalo’s Delaware Park will not face criminal charges. He likely will be charged with a vehicle and traffic infraction.

In an attempt to reduce deaths and injuries due to drunk driving, Cuomo announced an end-of-summer crackdown on impaired driving. The initiative, “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over,” will be a joint effort of the State Police and local law enforcement to be more vigilant and proactive when screening for impaired drivers.

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren is sending her daughter to private school. “We are Christians and we wanted to make a faith-based decision, but also one that we believe will give her the academic success she needs for her future,” the mayor said.

Former NIFA Board member George Marlin has some recommendations for his erstwhile colleagues when it comes to managing Nassau County’s deteriorating fiscal health.

How did organizers of the opt-out movement in New York Mills, a small school district in Oneida County where between 74 and 77 percent of kids didn’t sit for state English or math tests, see so much success?

Students from wealthier districts tended to perform far better on this year’s Common Core math exam than their peers in less affluent districts, but also opted out of the test at higher levels, according to analysis by POLITICO New York.

While emphasizing that Clinton’s defense cannot be judged until the content of the messages are fully analyzed, fellow diplomats and other specialists said if any emails were blatantly of a sensitive nature, she could have been expected to flag it.

A veteran of the war in Afghanistan will be the new highest ranking non-commissioned officer of the 10,500 member New York Army National Guard.