Updated 01/15/2012 04:44 PM
A "Look Ahead" at this week's headlines
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Martin Luther King Day casts a spotlight over the week's start.
As Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "There will be no rest, there will be no tranquility in this country until the nation comes to terms with our problems."
While Monday marks the official federal holiday, the Capital Region's interfaith memorial service to honor Dr. King will be held on his birthday, Sunday, at Saint Francis on Delaware Street. As for the day itself, many may see it as one less workday. For others, it's a day of action. Martin Luther King Jr. was a man who fought for civil rights in our country, and others want to pay him their respects through various charitable acts. In Albany, you can be part of this Day of Service by donating a new or gently worn coat at Burlington Coat Factory. They'll be donating them to www.onewarmcoat.org
A case causing political headaches and voter angst for over two years makes its way into court. The Rensselaer County absentee ballot fraud trial is set to start Tuesday. Questions surfaced after the September 2009 Troy primary, about a number of absentee ballots allegedly filled out by Working Family Parties members. But many of the voters claimed they never filled out a ballot. Two Democrats indicted in the investigation, County Elections Commissioner Edward McDonough and Councilman Michael LoPorto face second-degree forgery and criminal possession of forged documents charges. A county grand jury indicted them in January. LoPorto's attorney is filing to dismiss charges, because a special prosecutor in the case noted the councilman's handwriting does not appear to be on forged ballots. Meanwhile, a second grand jury is underway, hearing testimony against Council President Clem Campana, Councilman John Brown and his brother Dan. Former City Clerk William McInerney already pleaded guilty to one felony count of second-degree forgery.
After weeks of discussion, Corinth's village voters head to the polls Tuesday to determine whether they should merge with the town of Corinth. Villagers have to weigh the potential for shared services with the possibility that they may not see a tax decrease. Paying fewer taxes was the initial reason those in favor of dissolution filed a petition to do so. Town residents who live outside the village aren't eligible to vote, because the petition was brought under dissolution, not consolidation. Though both reorganization types would technically merge the two areas, under dissolution, only those living in the village are able to vote, whereas under consolidation, surrounding areas would have been eligible to do so too. Voting takes place from noon to 9 p.m.
Governor Cuomo is unveiling his 2012 New York State budget plan this week. Trying to get rid of a ten billion dollar deficit last year, Cuomo made state spending cuts. This year, he's expected to announce an additional 2.5 percent cut to all state agencies. Schools and health care saw cuts in last year's budget. Some good news for them this time around -- they're expecting a four percent funding increase in 2012. The new budget will also include just under two billion dollars in added revenue, thanks to a new tax code that replaces a surcharge on those making over $200,000 a year.