Tuesday, March 26, 2013

WVTK Local & State News March 26, 2013

The woman who served as town clerk and treasurer for the town of Weybridge for more than 26 years pleaded guilty yesterday to stealing from it.  Karen Brisson admitted to embezzling hundreds of thousands of dollars between 2006 and 2012.  The initial estimate of the embezzlement was 150-thousand, but an independent audit now has it closer to 475-thousand dollars.  Brisson pleaded guilty to one count of federal embezzlement and could face up to ten years in prison.

New York State lawmakers are considering a bill that would make killing or injuring a police dog a felony.  The bill says that the loss or injury to a police dog is not only a loss to the police or emergency service department, but also to the citizens of New York.  The measure passed the New York Senate yesterday.  The legislation now moves to the Assembly.

Replacement of the ailing Moriah Center Bridge is expected to get under way very soon.  The Essex County Board of Supervisors has unanimously approved payments for temporary easements for the detour around the span on County Route 7.  The Moriah Center Bridge was built in 1920 and gets about 5,000 cars a day.  Its main problem is deterioration of the steel girders that support the wooden deck.  The new Moriah Center Bridge is expected to cost about $1.7 million, with 80 percent from the federal Highway and Bridge Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Project.

Vermont State Police are investigating an armed robbery at the Smart Shop store located on North Main Street in Wallingford.  Police say a pregnant employee was walking into the store when a male approached her with a knife and forced her inside.  The employee was then forced into the bathroom while the robber stole an undisclosed amount of cash.  The employee wasn't injured during the incident.  Police say the employee's car was also stolen, but was located on Creek Road near the overpass of Route 4 in North Clarendon.  Anyone with information is asked to contact the Vermont State Police.

A provision buried deep in New York's tentative budget shows taxpayers will get part of the bill for raising the minimum wage.  The deal to raise the state minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to $9 by 2015 includes a "minimum wage reimbursement credit" for employers.  It would make up some of the wage difference for seasonal workers ages 16 to 19 and still in school.  The credit would apply to small businesses as well as major chains.  The total cost of the credit won't be made public until after the budget is enacted.

It's crunch time for taxpayers to wrap up their federal income tax returns or in the case of some to start working on them.  Get started by collecting basic paperwork like social security numbers, wages and earning statements like W-2s, a copy of last year's tax return, and bank routing and bank account numbers if you plan on having your refund deposited or a payment automatically withdrawn.  Also Consumer Reports advises asking preparers for a fee list up front.  Some will try to tack on extra charges under headings like processing or document preparation.