* What impact state Sen. Shirley Huntley’s arrest yesterday has on her Democratic primary next month has yet to be seen, but the campaign of a challenger, New York City Councilman James Sanders, is betting that the news will sway voters. “I think any time there’s an election, character of the candidates is one of the main factors people weigh when they choose who they’re going to vote for,” said Steve Behar, Sanders’ campaign manager. “That’s going to be the impact in this race.” Behar said he saw no indication that Huntley would drop her re-election bid, and pledged that Sanders would continue to “vigorously campaign and not change anything we do based on the fact that Sen. Huntley has been indicted.” “It’s been a weird few weeks,” he added. “I’ve been working campaigns for almost a decade, and I’ve never been in a race where three weeks before an election the opponent gets arrested.” A spokeswoman for Huntley did not immediately return a request for comment.
* Last week state Sen. George Maziarz and 13 fellow lawmakers sent a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo criticizing the Champlain Hudson Power Express, a proposed transmission line to send energy from Canada to the New York City area. The project comes as Cuomo is looking to boost the state’s energy infrastructure and generating capacity, but lawmakers like Maziarz want to prioritize existing, in-state power producers and want to block the new project. “It’s bad long-term policy because it’s going to make us reliant on an out-of-state – in this case, out of country – source for our energy needs when we have plenty of resources in state,” Maziarz said. The company spearheading the project argues it will create jobs, relieve congestion and won’t cost the state anything. “We’re not asking for state ratepayers to pay for this line,” said Donald Jessome, Transmission Developers Inc’s president and CEO. “We know the state has very scarce resources to invest in different projects, and by having a private sector company build part of the transmission system, it allows the state and other agencies to use their scarce resources for other areas.”
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