Andrew Cuomo

Supporters of raising New York’s minimum wage have not given up hope of getting a bill passed this session.

With just three weeks left in the legislative session, demonstrations and efforts to put the bill on the Senate floor continue.

Becoming co-chair of the Democratic Party in New York state will allow Syracuse Mayor Stephanie Miner to do more of what she already does. Miner is expected to be elected co-chair of the party when members meet this week.

The head of the state ethics commission, Janet DiFiore, says she has “done nothing wrong,” after allegations she used her influence as Westchester County DA to obtain welfare benefits for her maid.

DiFiore spoke after a lengthy closed door session of the ethics commission.

Governor Andrew Cuomo is attempting to revive New York’s iconic "I Love New York" tourism promotion campaign with some new ads.

The governor says the state not been aggressive enough in its promotions in recent years.

The "I Love New York" campaign, with its distinctive logo featuring a red heart, was a major advertising and promotional innovation in the 1970s, when it was created.  In fact, says Governor Cuomo and his top economic development aids, it was too successful, and countless other groups and causes have adapted the now iconic image.

Governor Andrew Cuomo gave a rousing speech at a meeting of the State Democratic Party, but stopped short of endorsing a democratic take over of the State Senate.

At the meeting, the new co-chairs of the party, chosen by Cuomo, were introduced.

For weeks, there’s been a stalemate in Albany over the issue of raising the state’s minimum wage, with Assembly Democrats backing the idea, Senate Republicans opposing it, and Governor Andrew Cuomo remaining neutral in the middle.

Cuomo says he generally backs the measure, but feels that the GOP can’t be convinced.   

Governor Andrew Cuomo has taken the reigns of the troubled New York Racing Association Board, saying he needs to “restore the public trust” in a rapidly changing gaming industry.  

Cuomo convinced members of the independent board that oversees horse racing in New York to agree to a restructuring that will give the governor the majority of appointees on a new, slimmed down board.

The move comes after a series of controversies at the troubled New York Racing Association, which led to the recent firing of its president and top legal counsel over allegations that NYRA knowingly withheld millions of dollars owed to bettors.

Governor Andrew Cuomo, speaking by phone to a gathering of advocates for the poor, says he’s rescinded a 14-year-old state regulation that required food stamp recipients be subject to fingerprinting before receiving benefits.  

“Poverty and hunger are not crimes,” said Cuomo. “So we shouldn’t treat the poor or the hungry as criminals.”

The New York Racing Association is defending its authority to name its officers and operate freely in what they believe is the best interests of thoroughbred racing.

NYRA promoted two executives while the state is investigating allegations the association intentionally held back roughly $8.5 million in winnings from bettors. State government officials have threatened to replace NYRA, which operates the Belmont, Aqueduct and Saratoga thoroughbred tracks under a state franchise.

Governor Andrew Cuomo came to Syracuse today to promote his legislation for protecting people with special needs and disabilities.

The legislation creates a center which would have primary responsibility for investigating allegations of abuse and neglect of disabled people in state operated or licensed facilities. Last year there were 10,000 such allegations.

Democrats in the State Assembly approved a bill to increase the state’s minimum wage.

The Republican leader of the State Senate offered a spirited defense of his position opposing the measure, but did not rule the issue out altogether.

Democrats in the Assembly approved a bill to increase the state’s minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 an hour.  Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, who has championed the measure, calls it a “moral imperative”.

“It is, I keep saying it, a moral issue,” said Silver.

Steve Rhodes via Flickr

Governor Cuomo, who won national praise and attention  for championing the passage of same sex marriage in New York, calls President Obama’s support of gay marriage a “major advancement for equal rights in this country."

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says he didn't discuss the effort to legalize gay marriage during his private conversations with President Barack Obama Monday, and doesn't intent to push the issue.

Syracuse’s mayor hopes her appointment to a state infrastructure commission will mean more funding for central New York.

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced a major reform package aimed at ending the abuse and neglect of people with disabilities in state care.

The governor was joined by legislative leaders, district attorneys, and people with disabilities at the state Capitol on Monday.

Many school budgets across New York state have been hit hard by the recession. Tax revenues are down at the same time that costs are rising.

The Catholic Church is weighing in on raising the state’s minimum wage, but Governor Andrew Cuomo says the chances of an increase becoming law are "dubious."

Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed his second blue ribbon panel of the week - this time to oversee infrastructure and capital projects including road and bridge repairs for the state.

wallyg / via Flickr

The New York Racing Association (NYRA) is under fire for skimming $8.5 million from bettors.

In a new report, the Cuomo administration says NYRA pocketed a larger-than-allowed "takeout" percentage on "exotic bets" - special wagers on multiple horses or races.

The report alleges that NYRA then tried to cover up the wrongdoing.

Governor Cuomo cast further doubt on issues like campaign finance reform and increasing the states minimum wage to become law this year, and says he’s “shifting” to a new phase of governing instead.

Patja / Flickr

Governor Andrew Cuomo says he has some goals for the rest of the legislative session, including reforming the campaign finance system and possibly raising the state’s minimum wage.

-JvL- / Flickr

The State Assembly has introduced a bill to permit voluntary public financing of some election campaigns for the first time in New York State.

Pro-choice advocates promoting the women’s reproductive health act say they are counting on Governor Andrew Cuomo to help the bill become law this year.

Governor Cuomo has vetoed over half a million dollars of legislative member items, saying he’s following through on a promise to ban the funds, which have been used in the past to finance lawmakers’ pet projects.

Some New York State lawmakers are trying to reinvigorate the debate over the minimum wage. Governor Cuomo admits it could again be on the table in Albany.

Governor Andrew Cuomo stopped in Syracuse Wednesday, fresh off the passage of the second straight on time budget under his administration. Cuomo called the $132.6 billion budget part of a series of actions that will transform New York State. 

New York lawmakers are very optimistic about getting a budget done on time again this year. They say 99% of the state’s spending plan has been closed down, and they will pass bills before the end of the week.  

The New York Senate and Assembly have approved new district lines, as Governor Cuomo and legislative leaders announced agreement on a number of other unrelated issues, including expansion of the state’s DNA data base, pension reform, and an amendment to allow more gambling in New York.  

A new bi partisan coalition of former elected officials,  business and civic leaders, is endorsing Governor Andrew Cuomo’s plan for campaign finance reform.  

Karen Dewitt

Actress Debra Winger and Gasland filmmaker Josh Fox were among hundreds of anti fracking protesters who descended upon the State Capitol Monday, in one of the largest demonstrations against the natural gas drilling process so far.

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