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SPACE TELESCOPE

Corning donates $1.8M in parts for space telescope

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Corning Inc. has donated $1.8 million in high-tech components for a telescope a private group wants to launch into space.

The not-for-profit BoldlyGo Institute wants to put its ASTRO-1 telescope in orbit by the mid-2020s. The group says obtaining the components for a roughly 6-foot telescope primary mirror marks a major step toward the ambitious goal.

The institute says the space telescope would be used to study planets orbiting nearby stars, as well as the Milky Way and other galaxies.

The components donated by the Corning, New York-based specialty glass maker had been intended for a NASA program that was canceled.

The institute was formed this year to privately raise funds to increase the variety of space science missions. The group also wants to fund an unmanned trip to Mars.

ORGAN DONORS- NEW YORK

New Yorkers lag as potential organ donors

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - Fewer New Yorkers have signed up as organ donors than most Americans, prompting the state to seek help boosting enrollment and shortening its list of patients who die waiting.

A study from Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield shows 22 percent of New York adults in the donor registry, compared with 48 percent nationally.

The study also shows 539 New Yorkers died awaiting a transplant last year while others became too sick and ineligible.

Currently 8,667 people are on New York's list for a kidney and 1,352 for a liver, some waiting more than five years.

The Health Department is drafting a bid request for outside help expanding registration.

So far, 3.4 million adults statewide have indicated their intent or given legal consent to donate their organs after they die.

SOLDIERS' DEBT

Authorities say soldiers get $92M in debt relief

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) - New York and 12 other states have settled an investigation into improper lending with a court agreement to shut down the company and expected to provide $92 million in debt relief for 17,800 U.S. military personnel.

New York's Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says deceptive practices by Rome Finance Co. based in California and Georgia included failing to accurately disclose charges and interest rates and helping retailers inflate prices, with repayments taken from soldiers' paychecks.

Authorities say military personnel will keep financed merchandise like computers and gaming systems with debt forgiven, including $2.2 million for more than 550 New York residents.

Rome Finance did business recently as Colfax Capital Corp. and Culver Capital LLC.

Other states are Colorado, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Indiana, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, North Carolina, Tennessee and Vermont.

BILLS FUTURE

Trump says his Buffalo Bills bid unlikely to win

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) - Donald Trump says he'll submit a bid to buy the Buffalo Bills but that it's unlikely his offer will be the winner.

The billionaire businessman told Fox News that's because he's "not going to do something totally stupid" to make the team his.

Trump spoke on the eve of Tuesday's deadline for prospective owners to submit initial bids for the National Football League franchise.

The team is for sale following the death of owner Ralph Wilson in March. Trump is one of many who have shown interest in buying it. Others include Buffalo Sabres owner Terry Pegula, rock star Jon Bon Jovi and former Sabres owner Tom Golisano.

Trump's lawyer Michael Cohen tells The Associated Press the Trump bid package will be submitted Tuesday.

CHEMICAL PLANTS

Govt fails to vet chemical plants for terror risk

WASHINGTON (AP) - Congressional investigators say the government has failed to inspect virtually all of the chemical facilities that it considers to be at high risk for a terror attack and has underestimated the threat to densely populated cities, including some in New York.

A year-long investigation by Republican staff on the Senate Homeland Security Committee paints a picture of inspection delay, government errors in risk assessment and industry loopholes in a $595 million terror prevention program. A copy of the report was obtained by The Associated Press.

The report said the Department of Homeland Security failed to conduct security inspections on 3,972 chemical facilities, or 99 percent of those deemed higher risk.

Roughly half of the higher-risk facilities are in 10 states: California, Texas, Ohio, Illinois, Pennsylvania, New York, North Carolina, Florida, Michigan and New Jersey.

SEVERE WEATHER-UPSTATE NY

Western New York drying out from heavy rain storms

RICHMOND, N.Y. (AP) - Some roads remain closed in western New York after flooding from two days of heavy rain caused washouts and flooded basements in several communities.

The National Weather Service in Buffalo says nearly four inches of rain fell on the Rochester area on Sunday, followed by another two-plus inches on Monday.

Emergency officials in Richmond in Ontario County tell the Democrat and Chronicle of Rochester (http://on.rocne.ws/UzjPj7 ) that about seven inches of rain washed out several roads and damaged homes near Honeoye (HUHN'-ee-oy) Lake.

Officials say the flooding was worse than what occurred in May when thunderstorms dumped more than two inches of rain across the western Finger Lakes region.

In neighboring Monroe and Livingston counties, officials are reporting damaged roads and other problems from flooding.

HEROIN ARRESTS

Feds arrest 9 in Hudson Valley heroin sweep

MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. (AP) - Nine suspects have been arrested in the second phase of a federal sweep targeting heroin trafficking in the Hudson Valley.

Authorities say all nine suspects in custody have Middletown addresses, but the arrests stretched as far as York, Pennsylvania.

All the arrests occurred about 6 a.m. Tuesday when a SWAT team was deployed. One suspect is still being sought.

The suspects face federal charges of conspiracy to distribute heroin. If convicted, they could face federal prison terms between 10 and 20 years.

In the first phase of the sweep last November, authorities arrested 12 men and two women. They were accused of running a large-scale, Middletown-based trafficking operation dating back to at least 2007.

FATAL HIT-AND-RUN

New York man charged in fatal hit-and-run accident

TIOGA, N.Y. (AP) - State police say a 33-year-old man has been charged in the hit-and-run accident that killed a man and injured his wife as the couple jogged along an upstate New York road.

Troopers say Jason Townsend of Nichols was charged with leaving the scene of an accident.

Officials say he was driving the sport utility vehicle that struck 41-year-old Daniel Manwaring and 43-year-old Karen Manwaring as they ran Saturday morning on a road in the town of Tioga (ty-OH'-guh), 25 miles west of Binghamton.

Daniel Manwaring was declared dead at the scene. Karen Manwaring was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Troopers say Townsend didn't stop. He later turned himself in to police after they later located his SUV.

Townsend is being held in the Tioga County Jail. It couldn't be determined if he has a lawyer.

WEGMANS-EXPANSION

Wegmans plans 10 new supermarkets in 5 states

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (AP) - Wegmans Food Markets says it plans to add 10 new stores in the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions over the next year or two.

The Rochester-based supermarket chain says it's planning to open four stores in Virginia, two each in Massachusetts and New Jersey, and one each in Pennsylvania and Maryland.

The first of the new stores will open this fall in Burlington, Massachusetts. Two others are scheduled to open in 2015 in Alexandria Virginia, and Westwood, Massachusetts, while opening dates for the others have yet to be determined.

Wegmans currently has 84 stores in New York, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Virginia, Maryland and Massachusetts.

The company is continuing to upgrade or replace stores in older markets, including New York state, where Wegmans has 46 stores.

LAKE DROWNING

New Jersey man drowns while boating in New York

GREENWOOD LAKE, N.Y. (AP) - Authorities say a 40-year-old New Jersey man has drowned in a New York lake while swimming during an outing with friends.

Police in the Orange County village of Greenwood Lake tell the Times Herald-Record of Middletown (http://bit.ly/WLhLpP ) that Ronald Huffin of Paterson was boating Monday on the lake on the New York-New Jersey border with his girlfriend and a male friend.

Officials say Huffin jumped off the boat before noon and swam around to the back, where he went under the water and didn't surface. The other man went in to the water to assist Huffin, but couldn't find him.

Greenwood Lake police responded, along with divers from the New York State Police and the West Milford Police Department in New Jersey. They recovered Huffin's body about 5 p.m.

MURDER-SUICIDE

New York couple's deaths ruled a murder-suicide

ELLENBURG, N.Y. (AP) - State police say autopsies have confirmed that a northern New York man fatally shot his wife, then committed suicide by turning the weapon on himself.

Troopers say they received a request last Saturday to check on the welfare of a couple at a home in the Clinton County town of Ellenburg, near the Canadian border.

A trooper entered the home and found the bodies of 44-year-old Pamela Williamson and 58-year-old Larry Williamson in an upstairs bedroom. A shotgun was found near the husband's body.

Police say autopsies conducted Monday at the Plattsburgh hospital determined that Pamela Williamson died from a gunshot wound to the head. Larry Williamson died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

TV SHOW-NEW PALTZ

Scenes for "Girls" to be shot as SUNY New Paltz

NEW PALTZ, N.Y. (AP) - Some scenes for the HBO series "Girls" will be shot at the State University of New York at New Paltz.

The Times Herald-Record of Middletown reports that series star and creator Lena Dunham will be directing scenes Tuesday afternoon on the campus 75 miles north of New York City.

Scenes will be shot outside the Haggerty Administration Building and at the campus quad. Some students and staffers will serve as extras.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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