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ALBANY -- The governor's SUV is gone from his parking area outside the Capitol, and he is not expected back today. So, for teacher evaluation watchers, sources say any announcement of a deal between the state and the New York State United Teachers union will be tomorrow at the Capitol. {Gov. Andrew Cuomo has vowed he will propose his own system for evaluating teachers…

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The Buffalo and Erie County Botanical Gardens in Lackawanna glows during its "Night Lights at the Gardens" event late last month. The light show continues through Saturday. (Robert Kirkham / Buffalo News) Maybe next year. That was the message Erie County Executive Mark C. Poloncarz had for the Botanical Gardens in response to its request for operational fund…

As part of a regular weekly feature on the Politics Now blog, Tom Precious of The News' Albany Bureau posts an audio interview with a newsmaker from the Capitol.  ----- ALBANY -- State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli insisted today that he maintains a good working relationship with Gov. Andrew Cuomo, but said he is concerned some of the governor's budget plans end up "en…

ALBANY – A Bronx Democrat is calling upon the Senate’s top Republican to investigate the violent incident Buffalo Sen. Mark Grisanti got into last Friday night at the Seneca Nation casino in Niagara Falls. “There are too many versions of what happened the night of February 10, 2012 in the Seneca Niagara Casino," Sen. Ruben Diaz wrote in a mailing Wednesday. Diaz noted…

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Comments posted online by a restaurant owner seeking the city's permission to expand his business may have thrown a wrench into whether his Elmwood Avenue establishment will be allowed to move ahead with plans. Paul Tsouflidis, owner of Acropolis, has faced opposition from some neighbors primarily due to their concerns about loud noise coming from the business. A rece…

<a href="http://www.coveritlive.com/mobile.php/option=com_mobile/task=viewaltcast/altcast_code=76f74fa660" _mce_href="http://www.coveritlive.com/mobile.php/option=com_mobile/task=viewaltcast/altcast_code=76f74fa660" >Mayor's State of the City address</a> --Aaron BeseckerFollow me on Twitte…

ALBANY -- Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, who has worked with State Sen. Mark J. Grisanti on everything from the gay marriage law to a University at Buffalo expansion plan, said he left the senator a message over the weekend but that they have not communicated since a Friday night brawl at a Niagara Falls casino involving Grisanti and a Seneca businessman. "As I understand it, …

Last week in Congress: How our representatives voted with analysis from News Washington Bureau Chief Jerry Zremski  ----- WASHINGTON — Amid a series of largely predictable House votes on the budget process, both the House and the Senate last week finalized a hugely important piece of legislation: a bill reauthorizing funding for the Federal Aviation Administration and…

ALBANY -– In today’s version of the Albany-sure-can-be-predictable files, comes this entry. Besides the contracting wars (see earlier item) between Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli, the fight over whether to create a new pension tier for government workers is also getting nasty. Cuomo wants future employees to pay more, but also to have an option to enroll…

ALBANY -- The state comptroller's office is disputing claims by the Cuomo administration that auditors have been slow in reviewing contracts for goods and services by state agencies. The Cuomo administration in a Buffalo News article today said its plans to take away some of the pre-auditing powers of Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli are, in part, meant to streamline …

Buffalo News Washington bureau chief Jerry Zremski discusses President Obama's fiscal 2013 budget and other stories from the nation's capital that will be important to Buffalo in the coming week.  

Work on a former downtown hotel and a former school highlight Tuesday's city Planning Board agenda. On Wednesday, the Zoning Board of Appeals' agenda also includes the former Greystone Hotel and Elmwood Village Charter School projects, among others. Check out the rest of this week's public meetings in city government. --Aaron BeseckerFollow me on T…

Politics

Every Sunday, we'll publish a quick Q&A with someone from the local political world. Instead of touching on the latest in policy issues and proposed legislation, the intent is to catch a glimpse of the person behind the title. The interviews are done via email.   Council Majority Leader Demone A. Smith addresses his colleagues during a Common Council meeting…

Cuomo's trip to Buffalo. Schneiderman's reaction to the foreclosure settlement. Brown in New York. Here's a look at what others said about Western New York's politicians and political issues this week: It costs money for Gov. Andrew Cuomo to jet into Buffalo, and private donors are lending a helping hand. Kenneth Lovett of the Daily News repor…

ALBANY -– The Seneca Nation of Indians is expanding its lobbying and communications presence in an effort to block proposals at the state Capitol threatening to bring new casino competition to its gambling ventures in Western New York. The tribe has added a lobbying firm whose partners include former Buffalo mayor Anthony Masiello. Seneca officials declined to immediately …