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HWS Announces Commencement Speaker

On Friday, Hobart and William Smith Colleges announced John Grotzinger, the mission leader and project scientist for NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory, the speaker for the 2018 Commencement ceremony on Sunday, May 13th. The student newspaper The Herald was the first with the story and Alex Kerai, the paper's Editor-in-Chief joins us in studio.

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Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in his State of the State speech this week, floated the idea of converting the state income tax to a payroll tax to help reverse the new federal law that limits deductibility for state and local taxes. Many support the concept, but businesses say it’s not so easy to make the change – and it could bring unforeseen complications. 

2018 will be a year of criminal trials for former associates of Gov. Andrew Cuomo, as well as former leaders of the Legislature. Reform groups say they hope the lengthy court proceedings will spur lawmakers to enact some ethics reforms.

Six continuous months of corruption trials kick off on Jan. 22, when Cuomo’s former top aide Joe Percoco faces bribery charges for allegedly soliciting more than $300,000 from companies doing business with the state.

Blair Horner with the New York Public Interest Research Group said it will be a year unlike any other.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, in his eighth State of the State speech, told lawmakers that 2018 will be the “most challenging” year, and he said they will have to fight against what he said are “threats” from the federal government. He also announced steps to combat sexual harassment and reform the state’s criminal justice system.

Cuomo told lawmakers, the state’s top judges and hundreds of others assembled inside the state convention center that 2017 “was a tough year by any measure.”

But he said “2018 may be the hardest year in modern political history.”

Gov. Cuomo: State will sue to block federal tax overhaul

Jan 5, 2018

New York State will take Washington to court to challenge the new Republican tax overhaul, Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday, calling the new law an unconstitutional assault on states' rights and New York in particular.  

The lawsuit is one of several ways Cuomo, a potential 2020 presidential contender, is positioning New York to lead the opposition to President Donald Trump and Congressional Republicans. He's also calling for the state to push back on federal attempts to curb environmental protections, immigration and health care spending. 

Gov. Andrew Cuomo delivers his State of the State address on Wednesday, kicking off a challenging year of budget deficits and re-election races.

Cuomo begins his eighth year in office facing the largest budget deficit since 2011. New York is short $4.4 billion, and there’s uncertainty over federal policies, including the overhaul of the tax code, that could leave the state with even a bigger budget hole in the future.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  The new year dawns with political storm clouds bearing down on New York lawmakers and Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo. 

The New York City subway system, beset by breakdowns and delays, needs a massive investment. The upcoming corruption trial of a former top Cuomo adviser threatens to dim the Democrat's presidential chances. The state faces a $4 billion deficit, while ongoing conflicts with Republicans in Washington mean the state could lose even more health care funding. Then this fall, Cuomo and the entire Legislature face re-election. 

Bills end 17-year playoff drought with win and help

Jan 5, 2018

MIAMI GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — The Buffalo Bills snapped the longest current non-playoff drought in North American pro sports with a 22-16 victory Sunday at Miami and Cincinnati's victory at Baltimore. The Bills hadn't made the postseason since 1999.

Buffalo (9-7) will travel to Jacksonville next weekend in a wild-card game.

The Bills' anxiety was compounded by the loss of 1,000-yard rusher LeSean McCoy with a right ankle injury. He was carted off the field in the third quarter.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo is proposing measures to fight the crushing burden of student loan debt.

The Democratic governor says his proposed reforms build on the Excelsior Scholarship, which makes New York's public universities tuition-free for middle class families.

Cuomo proposes creating a student loan ombudsman in the state Department of Financial Services to help resolve student complaints, educate borrowers and assist students in default.

Governor Andrew Cuomo gives his State of the State address on Wednesday (on WXXI Radio & TV at 1 p.m.), with one of his proposals aimed at making sure students are well-nourished.

Cuomo revealed his “No Student Goes Hungry” program on Wednesday and it has five ways that the Governor wants to help the nearly 1 million kids from kindergarten to college that the state says don’t have consistent access to nutritious food.

(AP) Gov. Andrew Cuomo has pardoned 59 people for nonviolent crimes, including 18 immigrants whose years-old convictions put them at risk of deportation despite otherwise law-abiding lives.

The governor announced his latest clemency grants Wednesday.

Cuomo has issued several previous immigration-related pardons. They don't automatically end deportation proceedings but allow someone to petition for relief.

Wednesday's announcement also includes 39 “youth pardons” to clear the records of people who were 16 or 17 when convicted and have been crime-free since.

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