Assemblyman John McDonald | WAMC

Assemblyman John McDonald

Cohoes Mayor Bill Keeler speaking Feb. 25, 2020.
Jackie Orchard / WAMC


Environmental groups, community activists and elected officials are ramping up concern over potentially dangerous burning in the city of Cohoes.

Ezra Prentice Community Room, February 25, 2020
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Global Partners, a closely-watched business in Albany’s South End, hosted a meeting Tuesday with nearby residents who have long raised concerns about the environmental conditions in their neighborhood.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The troubled Cohoes Senior Center was the venue for today’s State of the City address by new Mayor Bill Keeler. WAMC's Capital Region Bureau Chief Dave Lucas was there.

New York state Assemblyman John McDonald & Albany County Legislator Sam Fein
Composite Image From Twitter

An Albany County legislator will try to unseat the incumbent in the Democratic primary to represent the 108th district in the New York State Assembly. 

James presented the mayor and city officials with an oversized check.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

New York Attorney General Letitia James has announced a $1 million grant for housing and code enforcement efforts in the city of Albany.

Officials flank NY Senator Neil Breslin at Unity House in Troy.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Concerns over lack of an early voting site in Troy, New York have led to a push for new state legislation.

Composite Image by Dave Lucas

Next week, voters in Troy will decide on a public library budget proposal that includes a 6.2 percent increase to the tax levy.

'X' Marks The Spot - three vacant buildings huddled together along Albany's Delaware Street acted as backdrop during Wednesday's presser.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

State and local officials gathered Wednesday in downtown Albany to highlight legislation awaiting the governor’s signature that addresses the issue of vacant and abandoned buildings.

NYS Assemblyman John McDonald is also a licensed pharmacist.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The city of Cohoes in Albany County is going to have three mayors in under five months. On Tuesday, first-term Democrat Shawn Morse pleaded guilty to felony wire fraud. That night, the Common Council swore in Council President Christopher Briggs as acting mayor. June’s Democratic primary winner Bill Keeler is all but certain to take office in January in the heavily Democratic city. We covered the situation in his home city and some state issues with New York state Assemblyman John McDonald, a Democrat from the 108th district who served as mayor of Cohoes for 13 years.

Right before a busy week in city politics, a longtime former Cohoes City Clerk died.

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo signs a bill into law banning single use plastic shopping bags in New York State at a ceremony held on Earth Day, Monday April 22, 2019 at Long Island University.
Governor Andrew Cuomo's Office

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo declared the legislative session that wrapped up Friday “the most productive in modern history.” WAMC's Capital Region Bureau Chief Dave Lucas garnered reaction from local lawmakers.

NYS Assemblyman John McDonald is also a licensed pharmacist.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Saying he's "not exactly a fan" of the online retail giant, New York state Assemblyman John McDonald, a Democrat from the Capital Region, is calling Amazon's decision not to base a new headquarters in Queens "terribly unfortunate." McDonald spoke with WAMC News Thursday about the Amazon news and state budget negotiations. He called the Amazon project a "once in a century opportunity, and unfortunately it looks like it's been blown."

Composite image by Dave Lucas/WAMC

This week started on a down note in New York state government when Governor Andrew Cuomo and State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli announced a $2.3 billion budget shortfall. Cuomo blames the deficit on federal tax changes. WAMC got reaction from local politicians.

Officials say the Northeast is experiencing an alarming shortage of the shingles vaccine that, left unsolved, could spread the painful and harmful virus to many this winter.

With state lawmakers back in Albany, a new Siena Poll shows half of New Yorkers view the governor and the legislature favorably, but pay raises are another story.

Legislators have a number of issues to tackle including marijuana, education, climate change and infrastructure spending.
Composite photo by Dave Lucas/WAMC

With Gov. Andrew Cuomo promising an aggressive agenda during the first 100 days of his third term, it figures to be a busy session when the full state legislature convenes in Albany January 9.

Composite photo by Dave Lucas/WAMC

It looks like New York's 213 state lawmakers are getting a pay raise despite some last-minute hopes the package could be modified.

"Gray Death" powder was found inside one of the  socks of an Albany County Jail inmate found dead in his cell.
Albany County Sheriff

The Albany County Sheriff is sounding the alarm about a dangerous synthetic drug seen in the Capital Region for the first time — at the county jail.

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Awards were announced today at the Capital Center in Albany for the eighth round of Regional Economic Development Council funding.

St. John the Evangelist and St. Joseph Church on Herrick Street, Rensselaer
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Funeral services were held this morning for longtime Rensselaer Mayor Dan Dwyer.

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand at the Whitney M. Young Jr. Health Center in Albany

U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand visited the Whitney M. Young Jr. Health Center in Albany Thursday, touting a new bill that would expand New York’s basic health plan.

Embattled Cohoes Mayor Shawn Morse
WAMC image by Dave Lucas

In an extraordinary press conference Monday, beleaguered Cohoes Mayor Shawn Morse defied calls from the governor and others to resign.

Mayor Morse
Lucas Willard/WAMC

Cohoes Mayor Shawn Morse is defying calls to resign, including from the governor of New York, after the Times Union reported more details of alleged domestic violence on Sunday.

Residents and community leaders are mobilizing in Albany to save a downtown pharmacy from imminent closure.

Cohoes city councilor Steve Napier shared this photo to Facebook.
Steve Napier

In January 2018 Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Albany was asked by the City of Cohoes to provide disaster case management services to help survivors of the fire that devastated much of downtown Cohoes. The organization released a report Thursday.

An Albany police officer signals Mayor Kathy Sheehan it's time to ride down Clinton Avenue on Bike To Work Day 2018.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

It's become a rite of spring in New York's Capital City:  "Bike To Work Day."

WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

Albany-area officials gathered today to mark Arbor Day near the New York state capitol.

WAMC Elizabeth Hill

The Preservation League of New York State has released its annual list of the seven “most threatened” historical sites.

Assemblymember Pat Fahy Thursday night at the Albany Public Library for a community forum about the New York budget.
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

With the  deadline for adopting the New York state budget days away, Albany area Assemblymembers John McDonald and Pat Fahy conducted a "community conversation" Thursday to bring constituents up to date.

Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner
WAMC photo by Dave Lucas

The Preservation League of New York State is asking legislators to support changes to historic tax credits.