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Today's Top Stories - Friday, June 23, 2017

MILLER CONVICTED ON 2 OF 4 COUNTS
Dakota Miller was convicted of second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter of his girlfriend's infant son, Ian, yesterday. The defense presented its closing argument portraying Codie and Louis Baker as perpetrators of violence to the 17-month-old baby. Prosecution spent 70 minutes for its closing arguments, using a timeline proving a match to Codie’s story with the medical staff’s testimony while Miller’s story was inconsistent with the time of Ian’s injury as well as the arrival time at the hospital in treating the child. Miller will be sentenced at 9:00 A.M. on Tuesday, September 5th in Steuben County Court.

 

NEW AGENDA PROPOSED FOR STEUBEN COUNTY LEGISLATORS
Steuben County legislators will discuss a new legislative agenda on Monday at 10:00 A.M. which includes a shared services agreement providing security for town courts requesting a trained, qualified law enforcement officer to be present during standard court hours. This next agenda will also propose allowing town taxpayers to pay current year taxes via credit card, accepting a Community Development Block Grant installing water and sewer improvements to Hornellsville’s Woodlands project, reappointment of members to the Corning Community College’s Regional Board of Trustees and other items.

 

NYS HEALTH DEPARTMENT MAKES CHANGES TO STATE’S MEDICAL MARIJUANA PROGRAM
The New York state Health Department is making changes to make the registration process easier for practitioners looking to prescribe medicinal cannabis. The Department has also made a second course about the medical uses of marijuana a prerequisite before they can participate in the state’s Medical Marijuana Program. Practitioners registering online with the Department can certify patients on the same day and will be listed publicly online. Currently, there are about 1,066 practitioners and 21,760 patients registered under New York’s Medical Marijuana Program.

 

NEW GOP HEALTHCARE BILL BOASTS PROPERTY TAX CUTS
Yesterday the Senate GOP revealed the new healthcare bill, which was drafted by Republicans behind closed doors. The legislation contains a provision that would bring an end to New York State charging its counties for a portion of the cost funding Medicaid. Proponents of the bill like Congressman Reed say the bill would save homeowners 40 percent in property taxes. New York counties contribute $2.3 billion annually to support Medicaid as part of an unfunded mandate with Steuben County paying $20 million yearly. It is estimated over one million New Yorkers would lose health coverage as a result of the bill in 2020 and most of these middle class and low-income beneficiaries would be working adults who cannot afford insurance otherwise. This legislation will be deliberated on the Senate floor in the coming weeks.

 

 

ATTORNEY GENERAL SCHEIDERMAN PRAISES OPERATION PIPELINE
Attorney General Eric Schneiderman Wednesday announced the indictment of 16 individuals for trafficking heroin throughout Monroe County and elsewhere in New York State – marking the fifth drug bust in his crackdown on suburban and upstate opioid and narcotics trafficking. The indictments are part of “Operation Pipeline,” a joint initiative between Schneiderman  and the NYSP.  In a press statement, the Attorney General said “the opioid and narcotics crisis is destroying families across New York State – and we’re committed to cutting off the pipeline that is fueling this epidemic.”

 

CAMPBELL FIRE DEPARTMENT RECEIVES FEDERAL GRANT
The Campbell fire department is getting a boost thanks to some federal funding. U.S. Senators Charles Schumer and Kirsten Gillibrand announced that the volunteer agency will receive nearly $68,000. The funding will help the department purchase self-contained breathing apparatus units. The funding was allocated through the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program (AFG).

 

NYS SENATE APPROVES INDUSTRIAL HEMP BILL
This week, New York State Senate gave final approval to legislation sponsored by Senator Tom O’Mara to treat industrial hemp like other agricultural products in New York State. Since 2014, O’Mara has worked with Southern Tier Assemblywoman Donna Lupardo (D-Endwell) and the Cuomo administration to enact new laws that have jump-started the industry’s growth in New York State and are helping secure an economic foothold for state farmers in the nation’s burgeoning industrial hemp industry.

 

SUNDQUIST CHALLENGES REED AS DEMOCRAT
Another name has been added to the growing list of Democrats who want to unseat Congressman Republican Tom Reed. Eddie Sundquist, a 28-year-old of Jamestown will kick off his campaign.  Sundquist has been a school teacher and recently became an attorney. The political newcomer says the economy and agriculture will be key issues in his campaign.

 

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