Political news

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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo’s tax-reduction plan includes a much-discussed property tax cap. But there’s another part that has unfolded with less fanfare. It pushes local governments to consolidate services in order to save money.

What does that consolidation look like? The Tompkins County 911 center is a good example. It runs 911 operations for the whole county. Assistant dispatch director Brian Wilbur lists the agencies that use the dispatch center:

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A bill that would repeal a few provisions of New York’s controversial gun law – the SAFE Act – heads to the state Assembly. But, that chamber is not likely to pass it.

It’s no secret the SAFE Act has been unpopular among pro-gun groups since its passage in 2013.

And Monday, the Republican-controlled Senate voted to get rid of certain pieces of the law. With their changes, family members could inherit semi-automatic guns when the owner dies. And it would ban background checks for people buying bullets.

Lawmakers are struggling to reach end of session deals, as the corruption scandals and on going federal investigations seem to be hampering their progress.  

With just over one week left until the session is scheduled to end, lawmakers seem far apart on many key issues. New York City’s rent regulations expire next week, along with a property tax break for real estate developers who agree to set aside some of their project for affordable housing, known as 421a.  

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With the 2014/15 legislative session coming to a close, state lawmakers, who’ve been ‘distracted’ by corruption scandals, still have some major pieces of legislation to tend to.

On that docket are the state’s rent control laws. They mostly affect New Yorkers in the 5 boroughs and nearby counties but the decision to renew, alter or even repeal them is a point of contention in Albany.

Former New York Gov. George Pataki is the latest Republican to get into the race for president. Pataki formally announced his candidacy late Thursday morning in Exeter, New Hampshire.