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State tries to make registration easier
5:21 pm
Wed May 21, 2014

Conn. launches voter registration app

A screen shot from the new voter registration app.
Credit Secretary of the State's website

Connecticut Secretary of the State Denise Merrill says state residents with valid driver’s licenses can now register to vote using an app on their smartphones and tablets.  The app can be downloaded here.

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Most school budgets pass
7:36 am
Wed May 21, 2014

3 of 4 schools fail to pierce tax cap

Then gubernatorial candidate Andrew Cuomo promoted his property tax cap in 2010.
Credit AP/Mike Groll

Three of the four Suffolk County school districts that attempted to pierce the state tax cap last night failed. A 2011 law requires that schools in New York must get a supermajority of voters to approve a budget that hikes property taxes by more than 2%. 

Only East Hampton was able to do that. Bridgehampton and West Babylon failed to get the required two-thirds of voters. And Sayville failed to get a simple majority. 

The districts that failed must resubmit their budget and if they fail again, last year's budget will be enacted. 

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6th illegal dumping site found
12:58 am
Wed May 21, 2014

More Illegal dumping found in Babylon

One of six sites being investigating for possible toxic dumping
Credit Gabrielle Fonrouge

The town of Babylon says it has learned of another illegal dumping site, this time in Deer Park. Officials are investigating to see if this latest site is connected to the 32,000 tons of toxic debris found at Roberto Clemente Park in Islip. 

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Refund for "illegally high interest"
12:44 am
Wed May 21, 2014

NYAG: online lender will refund $20M to New Yorkers

New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, speaks during a news conference in 2013.
Credit AP/Matt Rourke

An online payday lender will begin refunding borrowers in New York up to $20 million in what regulators call "illegally high interest" rates. 

Western Sky Financial was a prominent online lender that offered short-term loans at triple digits interest rates. New York sued along with several other states with strict usury laws that cap interest rates. In New York the interest rate cap is 16%.  

Officials say the users of the site who register with settlement manager will get refunds based on the difference between the legal interest rate and the rate charged.  

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"Tax Freeze" made schools weary of big hikes
10:26 pm
Mon May 19, 2014

Few Long Island schools aim to pierce tax cap

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo touting new "tax freeze" law.
Credit AP/Mike Groll

Long Island schools put their budgets up for vote Tuesday. Most school districts hope to increase their tax levies at or just below the 2% cap on property tax increases that New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law in 2011.

Four Suffolk schools are attempting to exceed that cap: West Babylon, Sayville, East Hampton, and Bridgehampton. Officials say the districts received less state school aid than they were hoping and so piercing the cap is necessary.

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