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Communities across New York State, including Brighton, have enacted bans on hydrofracking. Would they hold up if the state eventually allows drilling? The Associated Press reports a state lawmaker is introducing legislation that would allow home rule:

New York law does allow municipalities to zone mining activities that have significant surface impacts, such as gravel mines. But in 1981, state law was amended to exempt oil and gas from mining activities subject to local regulations. The home rule bills would remove that exemption.

– State senator Jim Alesi and Assemblyman Joe Morelle are sponsors of a bill that would require registered nurses to get bachelor’s degrees. There is a trend of nurses getting master’s degrees and doctorates. But in a time of growing health care shortages, would this impede entry into the profession?

Bob Lonsberry says Maggie Brooks should have exercised “justice or mercy” when Airport Director Susan Walsh was busted for DWI. She did neither:

The next day, Maggie Brooks said nothing of substance. Since then, the matter has disappeared into the black hole of an “internal investigation.” More than a week later, there is no new information or leadership from the county.

That is unacceptable. This matter has been mishandled by the county executive, to the hurt of the public interest and to the abandonment of the responsibility of leadership.

UPDATE 3:28 p.m. – Susan Walsh has resigned.

A New York Times Room for Debate asks if teachers are overpaid.

– A final note on Rochester’s lame New Year celebrations. Check out this photo from Buffalo’s festivities.

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