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Associated Press

The Associated Press is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering, supplying a steady stream of news to its members, international subscribers and commercial customers. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, it's a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  The New York State Senate has passed a new collection of bills aimed at battling the state's increasing rates of opioid and heroin abuse. 

The Senate on Monday passed eight bills to staunch heroin, opioid and synthetic drug use that lawmakers and Gov. Andrew Cuomo have declared a statewide crisis. 

Six measures target the use of synthetic or designer drug mixers such as fentanyl that escape criminality in current laws. 

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York state is launching an outreach campaign to remind motorists to move over for emergency vehicles.

Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the week-long effort Monday. It's intended to raise awareness of the state's 2011 "Move Over Law," which subjects drivers to fines and other penalties if they fail to slow down and move over for police cars, firetrucks, ambulances and highway maintenance and construction vehicles.

New York Now

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  An engineer who served as an undersecretary for the U.S. Department of Energy during the Obama administration has been named the next leader of New York State's public university system.

The State University of New York says its board of trustees approved  Kristina  Johnson's appointment as SUNY chancellor Monday afternoon. Her selection was first reported by The New York Times early Monday.

She'll replace Nancy Zimpher, who has overseen the nation's largest public university system for the past eight years.

siena.edu

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  New York voters say they are uninspired with the state's new budget overall, but are optimistic about headline items promoted by lawmakers and Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

A Siena College poll released Monday found only 22 percent of voters ranked the budget as excellent or good.

PBS.org

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP & WXXI News)  A group of health care providers, drug reform advocates and former users is launching a new effort to bring supervised drug consumption centers to New York State.

The facilities allow drug addicts to shoot up or consume their drugs in a safe, secure location under the supervision of medical personnel who can intervene in the event of an overdose.

Similar facilities are in use in other countries around the world but have faced political opposition in the U.S.

WXXI photo

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP)  The New York State Canal System is getting a spring cleanup.

More than 100 volunteer cleanup events have been scheduled Friday through Sunday along the 524-mile (843-kilometer) canal system and its trails.

The cleanup weekend is organized by Parks & Trails New York, a nonprofit group working with the New York State Canal Corporation.

New York's canal system dates back 200 years to the founding of the Erie Canal. The system runs from Buffalo to Albany and into northern New York.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo reports earning $400,000 on his federal tax return for 2016.

The Democratic governor made his tax returns available to journalists Tuesday afternoon, revealing a sharp increase in royalties from his 2014 memoir "All Things Possible."

The nearly $168,000 Cuomo accrued from his gubernatorial salary is boosted by $218,000 from the book and some investment income.

The returns show Cuomo donated $20,000 to HELP USA, a charity for the homeless he founded decades ago.

Animal Adventure Park/Facebook

HARPURSVILLE, N.Y. (AP)  The long-awaited arrival of April the giraffe's baby in upstate New York has made Animal Adventure Park the second most live-viewed channel in YouTube's history. 

YouTube says April's livestream had more than 232 million live views and 7.6 billion minutes of live watch time since February, second only to League of Legends eSports, which has been around since 2012. 

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York officials are asking residents to help prevent wildfires now that spring is here.

State environmental and homeland security officials are holding a news conference Monday at the Albany Pine Bush Preserve to talk about what the public can do to help prevent seasonal wildfires.

Wildfires spread when it is dry and breezy. They can be started by unattended campfires, burning leaves or even cigarettes tossed from cars.

New York has more than 18 million acres of forested land.

npr.org

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Will New York's first-in-the-nation free tuition program for middle-class college students spread to other states?

That's the hope of proponents such as Bernie Sanders and Hillary Clinton, who made debt-free college a key talking point in their Democratic presidential campaigns. And that's the prediction of its main champion, Democratic New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who called the plan a "model for the nation."

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