News from the Associated Press - July 7, 2014

Associated Press
July 7, 2014

Budget on his desk, Corbett has a lot to consider

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett isn't saying what he'll do with a no-new-taxes budget bill sitting on his desk.

It landed on Corbett's desk July 1, giving him 10 days to sign it, veto the entire thing or veto certain objectionable spending items before it becomes law.

He's got a lot to think about after a roller-coaster legislative session for Republicans who control the Legislature.

Corbett's budget secretary, Charles Zogby, says the Republican governor is considering whether the spending plan takes too many risks to balance and whether it's acceptable without some sort of relief from rising pension costs.

Corbett had wanted lawmakers to approve pension legislation first. But House Republican Whip Stan Saylor suggests that it's up to Corbett to persuade more lawmakers to support the pension bill he wants.

 

No appeals filed over Attica report release

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - No court appeals have been filed challenging limited release of an investigative report about the 1971 Attica prison riot.

Attorney General Eric Schneiderman sought disclosure of remaining Meyer Commission documents examining the nation's bloodiest prison rebellion and an alleged cover-up of police crimes in retaking it.

Altogether, 11 staff members and 32 inmates died - all but four shot by state police and corrections officers.

The report's published volume found no intentional cover-up by prosecutors but poor evidence gathering by troopers investigating their colleagues.

Scheiderman's office says it will carefully comply with Justice Patrick NeMoyer's order to leave out grand jury testimony from remaining volumes with investigative details.

The appeal deadline passed last week.

Lawyer Jonathan Gradess, representing victims' families, says it's disappointing Schneiderman didn't appeal and the cover-up continues.

 

Central NY city mulls public housing smoking ban

AUBURN, N.Y. (AP) - The city of Auburn in central New York is considering a ban on smoking in public housing complexes, joining a growing national trend.

A total of 326 apartments would be affected by the ban as of Sept. 1 if the Auburn Housing Authority enacts it. A public hearing is scheduled Monday afternoon, followed by a vote from the authority's commissioners.

Stephanie Hutchinson, authority director, tells the Auburn Citizen that health and safety were the main reasons for the ban. Non-smoking residents are often exposed to second-hand smoke from other apartments.

One violation would result in termination of a tenant's lease.

The state of Maine bans smoking in all subsidized housing units. A number of cities also have bans, including Toledo and Houston, and Boston has one in the works.

 

NY offers new tours of Capitol, Empire State Plaza

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Visitors to New York state's Capitol this summer will be able to take advantage of new free tours of the historic building and the nearby Empire State Plaza.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo says the 30-minute tours of the plaza will focus on its history and design. The tour will include stops at the plaza concourse, the Egg Center for the Performing Arts and the outdoor plaza, which is adjacent to the Capitol and includes several state buildings and memorials.

The plaza tours are offered at 11:15 a.m. and 1:15 p.m. Monday through Friday, through Oct. 30.

In addition, two additional tours of the state Capitol have been added throughout the summer.

Reservations are required for groups of 10 or more.

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