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Up on the Board: A hush in Albany, LI video slots, Chief Burke’s temper

Chief of Police James C. Burke speaks as

Chief of Police James C. Burke speaks as Suffolk County Police, along with New York State Troopers, United States Marshals and FBI agents, announce enhanced patrol and investigative efforts at a press conference at the Third Precinct in Bay Shore. (June 3, 2013) Photo Credit: Steve Pfost

The editorial board is talking about what an unusually stagnant atmosphere pervades Albany at this end-of-session time. Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver is weakened by the inquiries into how he handled sexual harassment claims against former Assemb. Vito Lopez. And Sens. Jeff Klein and Dean Skelos, sharing the leadership of the Senate, also don’t seem to be moving much legislation forward.

We’re meeting this afternoon with state Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, a former state senator, and plan to ask him about the Albany atmosphere.

Also, the board is taking a look at where gambling legislation stands. Will the legislature approve as many as 2,000 video slot machines for Long Island? And will that be affected by a planned statewide referendum on non-Indian-run casinos?

We note that critics of Suffolk Police Chief James C. Burke, who dislike his operating style, may have new fuel. He is accused of punching someone he suspected stole his gun belt, ammunition and handcuffs from his SUV.

And Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone has reversed himself on yet another decision – this time altering his proposal to merge the elected positions of comptroller and treasurer. Bellone seems to be making a habit of announcing plans before thinking them through.

Finally, we think the National Security Agency did well to foil a plot to bomb the New York Stock Exchange. We’re wondering about NYPD Chief Ray Kelly’s motives for saying that the NSA should not have kept its phone spying secret.

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Up on the Board is the editorial board's blog about what we just discussed at our weekday morning meeting. These meetings are where we talk about the news of the day and hash out our positions for the opinion sections of Newsday, Newsday Westchester and amNew York.


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