Tax season is here, and your 2014 tax return is due in about six weeks.

Local CPA David Young says the biggest change people need to be aware of this year is the requirement for proof of health insurance coverage due to the Affordable Care Act. If you did not have health insurance coverage in 2014, you could face a penalty amounting to one percent of your adjusted gross income.

Young says one common mistake he sees is taxpayers using the wrong filing status, which could be costly.

Krenzer Farms

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) New York's comptroller says agriculture contributed $37.6 billion to the state's economy in 2012, an increase of more than 22 percent over five years, while the number of farms declined slightly. 

The comptroller's office says the state ranks in the top 10 nationally in dairy production, as well as wine, apples and maple syrup. 

The 2012 report shows the vast majority of farms _ 98 percent _ were family-owned. 

More than half had sales below $10,000. 

They were operated by 56,000 New Yorkers, employing 61,000 laborers. 

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The WXXI News staff checks newspapers and websites to help keep tabs on what's happening in communities across New York state.

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Gas prices are on the rise.  says in the Rochester area we are averaging about $2.53 a gallon right now, which is up about six cents over the last week. That's a trend that's been going on nationwide, partly due to the usual seasonal change at the refineries who are getting ready to make a summer blend of fuel.

Petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan says one issue is one that happens every spring, when manufacturers have to switch their refineries over to the summer blend of fuel.

The United Way of Greater Rochester has set its goal for this year's campaign; It is $24 million, which is a little less than the $25.5 million raised last year.  

Campaign chairs Lauren Dixon and Mike Schwabl, who own the Dixon Schwabl marketing and communications company, say the goal is lower than last year partly because of changes in the local economy. With some of the larger firms cutting back over the years, there isn't the same base of potential donors.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  Two New York state lawmakers have reintroduced legislation intended to ban the use of toxic chemicals in children's toys _ but the legislation continues to face opposition from toy manufacturers. 

Republican Sen. Phil Boyle and Democratic Assemblyman Steve Englebright said Monday they will push the legislation again after it failed to pass the state Senate last year. 

The measure would require manufacturers to phase out the use of chemicals considered harmful, such as benzene, mercury, cadmium and cobalt. 

Hundreds of teachers are rallied at the State Capitol late Monday, saying they are calling out Cuomo for what they say is his anti public school agenda.

The teachers, including New York State United Teachers Union Vice President Andy Pallotta say Governor Cuomo has declared a “war” on students, parents, and teachers, and is advancing a “test and punish” agenda.

“The has no respect for public education, ” Pallotta shouted, as the crowd cheered.


Student leaders from local universities gathered with Senator Gillibrand at University of Rochester to discuss campus sexual violence legislation. The senator says the Campus Accountability and Safety Act would provide incentive for universities to address sex crimes on campus. She says it would also increase transparency, and strengthen support for survivors.