Regional Briefs – February 16, 2015

NY Health Exchange Extends Sunday Deadline

ALBANY – New York’s health exchange extended it Feb. 15 application deadline for another two weeks for those who have begun the process. They will have until Feb. 28 to finish their application and enroll in a commercial or nonprofit insurer’s health plan in the system to get coverage starting April 1.

Newark Sells Vacant Lots For $1,000 to Couples

NEWARK – Newark officials on Saturday sold 100 vacant lots exclusively to couples for just $1,000 on a first-come, first-served basis — on condition they build a home there within 18 months and live there for five years. Some people camped overnight. Buyers were required to make a $500 down payment Saturday and pay the additional $500 at closing.

NY Breaks Ground on Coney Island Beach Project

CONEY ISLAND – The city on Saturday broke ground on a $25 million project to protect Coney Island’s shoreline. The Army Corps of Engineers will replenish beachfront areas damaged by Superstorm Sandy in 2012 with a series of rock jetties.

9,400 Former Inmates Find Jobs Under State Program

ALBANY – More than 9,400 former inmates have found work through a 3-year old state program, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Friday. Work for Success pairs ex-inmates with a counselor who works to get them a private-sector job. Those at high risk of returning to crime get extra help.

Fake Cop Hails Cabs In Order to Rob Driver

NEW YORK – A gun-wielding man pretending to be an NYPD officer has been hailing livery cabs near JFK Airport and robbing the driver, seven times since Feb. 2, the Daily News reported. The suspect has already stolen $1,000 and two cell phones.

Cuomo Requests Analysis Of Mass. School Takeovers

ALBANY – Mulling a takeover of failing New York schools, Gov. Andrew Cuomo wants a detailed analysis of Massachusetts’s takeover program to determine what made it successful. In a letter to Education Chancellor Merryl Tisch, Cuomo cites 178 failing schools, including 77 that have been failing for a decade with more than 250,000 students.