Uber fined $98G for underreporting lobbying spending

ALBANY (AP) — Ride hailing service Uber has been fined $98,000 by the New York State ethics commission for underreporting about $6.3 million in lobbying spending.

The Joint Commission on Public Ethics announced the settlement agreement with Uber on Thursday.

The fine covers activities in 2015 and 2016 when Uber successfully battled New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio’s attempt to limit its service in the city and pushed to expand upstate.

The settlement says most of the underreporting was due to an oversight by a compliance firm that Uber used.

Uber spokeswoman Alix Anfang said “Uber NY has revised its processes” and no longer uses the firm that prepared the disclosure statements.

Last month, Uber admitted to underpaying its New York City drivers tens of millions of dollars.

New York child marriage ban heads to Cuomo’s desk

ALBANY (AP) — The New York Legislature has overturned a state law that allows 14-year-olds to legally wed, paving the way to end child marriage in the state.

The Democratic-led Assembly passed a bill Thursday that would increase the age of marriage to 17. The Republican-led Senate passed the measure earlier this week.

New York is one of three states that allows children as young as 14 to marry with parental and judicial consent. The other two are Alaska and North Carolina.

Child advocates say the New York law can trap minors in forced marriages, sexual abuse and domestic violence.

Health department data shows that between 2000 and 2010, 3,853 minors were married in New York. Eighty-four percent were girls married to adult men.

The bill the Legislature approved would prohibit marriage for individuals under 17 years old; those ages 17 to 18 would need court approval. The bill outlines a process of interviews and statements of rights to ensure a 17 year old enters a marriage by free will.

The legislation now heads to Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo for approval. Cuomo designated the proposal a top priority in February and praised the Senate and Assembly Thursday for passing legislation to end the “intolerable practice.”

Woman killed in multi-vehicle crash on Thruway near Buffalo

LANCASTER (AP) — Authorities say a 45-year-old Rochester woman has died in a multi-vehicle crash on the Thruway’s westbound lanes outside Buffalo.

State police say around 9:45 a.m. Thursday, a westbound 2016 Freightliner box truck hit the rear of a 2009 Honda driven by 45-year-old Ellen Volpe of Rochester. Volpe was pronounced dead at the scene.

Troopers say Volpe’s car struck multiple other vehicles and one person was taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

The crash happened in Lancaster between Exit 48a and Exit 49. It shut down the left lane until around 2 p.m., backing up traffic in the right lane for miles.

Pit bull owner charged after 2 dogs attack 12-year-old girl

HERKIMER (AP) — A 12-year-old central New York girl is recovering after she was attacked by two pit bulls while waiting for her school bus.

Herkimer police charged the dogs’ owner, 25-year-old Aaron Brown, with reckless endangerment on Monday. He was then turned over to police in nearby St. Johnsville, where he faces a trespassing charge.

The girl told police the dogs attacked her May 31 without provocation while they were running loose. Firefighters responding to a 911 call found the girl with puncture wounds and broken bones in her arm. She’s currently undergoing treatment.

Police say Brown didn’t have the two pit bulls licensed.

It couldn’t be learned from Herkimer County prosecutors if Brown has a lawyer who could comment on the charges.

The dogs are currently being held by a local humane society.

Groovy: Woodstock site gets
national historic recognition

ALBANY (AP) — The site of the 1969 Woodstock music festival is now officially recognized for its place in history.

Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced on Tuesday that Bethel Woods Center for the Arts in the Hudson Valley town of Bethel has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Cuomo says the festival that drew nearly half a million people to Max Yasgur’s dairy farm was a “pivotal moment in both New York and American history,” and the recognition will preserve the landmark for future generations.

Bethel Woods Center CEO Darlene Fedun says the recognition furthers educational and cultural initiatives at the museum and surrounding grounds that embody the “spirit of the ‘60s.”

The 800-acre (323-hectare) Bethel Woods campus is 90 miles (144 kilometers) north of New York City.