Regional Briefs – April 24, 2017

Engineer to Become Chief Of NY State University System

ALBANY – An engineer who served in the Obama Energy department was voted the next leader of New York state’s public university system, The Associated Press reported. State University of New York trustees on Monday approved Kristina Johnson as chancellor to replace Nancy Zimpher.

NY’s Madison County Mulls Ban on Plastic Shopping Bags

WAMPSVILLE, N.Y. – Madison County may join two Long Island counties in banning plastic shopping bags, The Associated Press reported. Legislators are holding a public hearing on May 9. NYC’s attempt to impose a fee last winter was blocked by the state.

NYers Unexcited With Budget Cuomo Termed Historic

ALBANY – New Yorkers are uninspired with the state’s new budget, though they’re optimistic about a water infrastructure fund, allowing Uber upstate and free college for some, according to a Siena poll released Monday. Only 22 percent ranked the budget as good.

$4M in Public Matching Funds Spent in NJ Gov Race

TRENTON – Nearly $4 million in public funds have been given out in this year’s race to succeed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, The Associated Press reported. Republican Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno got the most, followed by Democrats Jim Johnson and John Wisniewski, and Republican Jack Ciattarelli.

New Virtual Reality Ride Has Extreme Heights, Spiders

JACKSON, N.J. – A theme park is unveiling the world’s tallest and fastest virtual reality drop ride that will prey on people’s fears of heights and spiders, The Associated Press reported. Six Flags Great Adventure says riders of Drop of Doom VR will plunge 41 stories at speeds of 90 mph while battling mutant spiders. It opens May 5.

Christie Commutes Sentence Of Marine Over Gun Charge

TRENTON – New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie on Friday commuted the sentence of a Marine days before he was to start a three-year prison sentence for possessing a weapon. Hisashi Pompey had a permit in his home state of Virginia.