Ads to run in support of school tax credit ahead of Albany budget deadline

ALBANY — With about a week until the state budget deadline, supporters of an education investment tax credit are going on the air with ads in English and Spanish to pressure lawmakers to include the controversial measure in the final spending plan. In what is being called a "significant" buy, the ad starting Monday will run for at least a week on cable television in New York City and broadcast and cable in Albany. The Spanish language version is only running in New York City. SEE THE AD IN ENGLISH SEE THE AD IN SPANISH In the ad, Yohan Garcia, executive director of the League Of United Latin American Citizens Queens Council, says students need "not just math and science, but art and music" and labels the proposed tax credit for those who donate to schools the "mostly widely supported idea in a generation." While strongly backed by Timothy Cardinal Dolan and the state’s Catholic bishops, private and parochial schools, and state Senate Republicans, it is vehemently opposed by many legislative Democrats, who say it would take away needed funding from public schools. But some Democrats, including Senate Democratic Minority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Marcos Crespo, the chairman of the Assembly Hispanic Task Force, support the measure. Gov. Cuomo has tied the tax credit to passage of a state DREAM Act that would provide taxpayer tuition assistance money to the college kids of undocumented immigrants — an issue supported by Garcia and legislative Democrats but opposed by Republicans. Continue Reading

Tom Brady’s appeal in DeflateGate scandal won’t be heard by Wednesday deadline

Two people familiar with the situation tell The Associated Press that Tom Brady’s appeal of his four-game suspension for his role in the deflated footballs scandal won’t be heard by Wednesday’s 10-day deadline. Both sources spoke on condition of anonymity Monday because no date for the appeal has been set. MYERS: HERE'S HOW TOM BRADY VS. ROGER GOODELL WILL PLAY OUT The collective bargaining agreement calls for it to be heard within 10 days. However, the league and the players’ union can agree on delaying the hearing. The two sides don’t agree on much else. The union asked Commissioner Roger Goodell to recuse himself from hearing the appeal because it said he lacked impartiality and he would be called as a witness. Goodell will not withdraw from what he considers his responsibility of hearing the appeal, according to several people with knowledge of the decision. Troy Vincent, the league’s executive vice president of football operations, handed down the suspension to three-time Super Bowl MVP Brady, one of the sport’s biggest stars. Vincent also fined the Patriots $1 million and stripped them of a first-round draft pick next year and a fourth-rounder in 2017. Patriots owner Robert Kraft said last week he will not appeal the team’s penalties. Continue Reading

Iran nuclear talks faltering as deadline approaches

Negotiations over Iran’s nuclear program entered a critical phase on Monday with differences still remaining less than two days before a deadline for the outline of an agreement. With the March 31 target fast approaching, the top diplomats from the five permanent members of the U.N. Security Council, Germany and Iran were meeting to try to bridge remaining gaps and hammer out the framework deal that would be the basis for a final accord to be reached by the end of June. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and his Iranian counterpart, Mohammad Javad Zarif, have been meeting in the Swiss town of Lausanne since Thursday in an intense effort to reach a political understanding on terms that would curb Iran’s nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief. Officials say the sides have made some progress, with Iran considering demands for further cuts to its uranium enrichment program but pushing back on how long it must limit technology it could use to make atomic arms. In addition to sticking points on research and development, differences remain on the timing and scope of sanctions removal, the officials said. And, in a sign that a deal is unlikely on Monday, Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov will leave the talks, just a day after arriving, to return to Moscow for previously planned meetings, according to his spokeswoman Maria Zarakhova. Lavrov will return to Lausanne on Tuesday if there is a realistic chance for a deal, she said. White House spokesman Josh Earnest said on Sunday it was up to the Iranians to make the choice to accept what has been presented to them. By accepting the restrictions, the Iranians would “live up to their rhetoric that they are not trying to acquire a nuclear weapon,” he said in Washington on ABC’s “This Week.” The Obama administration says any deal will stretch the time Iran needs to make a nuclear weapon from the present two to three months to at least a Continue Reading

People scrambling to make April 15 tax deadline have options, but must file return on time

Getting your taxes done by the April 15 deadline is enough of a headache without worrying about whether you’ll have enough cash on hand to pay the IRS. “While foresight and preparation are essential to tax preparation, it’s also a fact of tax season that a large swath of taxpayers will be left scrambling as April rolls around, often wondering if they have the means to get Uncle Sam off their backs,” Odysseas Papadimitriou, CEO of personal finance websites CardHub and WalletHub, told the Daily News. “The good news is that there are options. Everyone should file a return by the deadline no matter what, but after that, the particular route you take, and the cost of your tardiness, will depend on how long it takes to come up with the requisite funds.” For those taxpayers in a bind, here are the best steps to take if you can’t pay the government by Tax Day, courtesy of CardHub and WalletHub: - Don’t try to hide. You’re not going to slip through the cracks, and the IRS has proven far more willing to work with people when they’re straightforward about their ability, or lack thereof, to meet tax obligations. Submit your return by the April 15 deadline even if you don’t have the money to pay and establish an open dialogue with the tax collection agency. - File no matter what. The IRS levies separate penalty fees for failing to pay taxes and failing to file a tax return. At a minimum, you want to eliminate the latter since it’s entirely within your control. - Watch for scams. There are plenty of companies out there that will be quick to promise miracle fixes to even the most severe tax problems. View them with intense suspicion. Thoroughly research any company you’re considering working with in order to verify they are reputable. And remember, if an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. - Reevaluate withholdings. While it won’t help you this time Continue Reading

Lindsay Lohan may not finish community service by deadline, faces possibility of arrest

Say it isn't so, Lilo. Lindsay Lohan has come up "woefully short" with her remaining community service hours and should face arrest as soon as she returns to the U.S. from London, a California prosecutor said Wednesday. The "Mean Girls" star is due for a probation progress report Thursday, and so far she's completed less than 20 hours of the 125 additional community service hours she agreed to complete by May 28, Santa Monica City Attorney Terry White told the Daily News. "We'll probably ask that her probation be revoked," White said Wednesday. "It doesn't appear she's taking it very seriously." Lohan received the extra hours after White challenged the log sheet she submitted in January to satisfy the sentence in her 2012 reckless driving conviction. "She's had more than enough opportunity to finish. But she turned in some hours that were extremely suspect, that the court disallowed, and now, given the last chance of all last chances, she's come up woefully short," he said. Lohan, 28, has been logging her time at the London-based charity Community Service Volunteers. She posted an Instagram photo Tuesday showing a stack of paperwork and the caption, "Community Service -office day." If the group gives her a full-time schedule for the next three weeks, it's possible she still could make her deadline. She's worked close to the wire before. She rushed to complete her original 240-hour requirement back in January and thought she made the deadline until White lowered the boom. He questioned how Lohan was able to complete 10 hours on Jan. 19 considering she went to an emergency room that day for treatment of a mosquito-borne virus she purportedly picked up in Bora Bora. "(A) note says she received acute care for three days, but on those three days, again, 10 hours were served," he said with exasperation in late January. "I'm having trouble not only with the quality of the work but whether or not the work was actually done," he told the Continue Reading

NYC misses deadline to fix 16 dangerous family homeless shelters

The city blew a deadline Tuesday to fix up more than a dozen dangerous and decrepit family shelters — and now faces a loss of millions of dollars in state aid. On April 28, Gov. Cuomo gave the de Blasio administration seven business days to remedy dozens of serious building and housing code violations at the shelters, ranging from vermin to fire safety violations. By the Tuesday deadline, the city Department of Homeless Services had yet to address the situation at 16 shelters across the city that house families with children. “The violations range from severe electrical and plumbing issues that have gone uncorrected for a significant period of direct violation of the building code,” Sharon Devine, executive deputy commissioner of the state Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, wrote in a letter to city DHS Commissioner Gilbert Taylor. Several shelters now house families “despite serious structural issues that could endanger their health,” including 12 with fire safety issues, Devine wrote. The 16 were among 25 red-flagged in March by the city Department of Investigation for hundreds of serious code violations, including dead rats and blocked fire exits. The state provides the city with $635 million toward homeless aid. Because DHS failed to meet the deadline, on Tuesday the state began withholding funds for the 16 problem shelters. On Monday, Mayor de Blasio held a press conference outside a Queens shelter to announce he’d formed a task force to clean up the shelter system. That same day, Controller Scott Stringer rejected contracts with two providers of shelters cited for dozens of code problems. The homeless census in the city has grown to record levels, peaking near 60,000 in December and dropping down to 56,000 this week. In response, Taylor slapped back at the Cuomo administration, stating, " Instead of spending scarce resources to re-inspect shelters and issue Continue Reading

Greek finance chief says country won’t pay $1.8 billion debt by Tuesday deadline

ATHENS, Greece —  Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis confirmed that the country will not make its payment due later to the International Monetary Fund. When asked while walking into the Finance Ministry about whether Greece will pay the 1.6 billion euros — about $1.8 billion — due to the IMF, Varoufakis said "no." His comment came amid speculation that Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras is trying to craft some sort of last-minute deal with creditors before the payment is due and before the European part of Greece's bailout comes to an end. A Greek official said Tsipras has spoken with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi and European Parliament president Martin Schulz. The official did not reveal what was discussed.    The European part of Greece's international bailout is set to expire Tuesday, and with it any possible access to the remaining rescue loans it contains that it needs to pay its debts. With banks shut and Greeks limited to cash withdrawals of $67 per day, long lines formed once more at ATM machines. Capital controls began Monday and will last at least a week, after a weekend bank run prompted by the prime minister's call for a referendum on creditor demands in return for bailout loans. European officials and Greek opposition parties have warned that a rejection of the creditor proposals in Sunday's popular vote will lead Greece out of the eurozone and potentially out of the European Union itself. The government has responded by saying this is scaremongering, and that a "no" vote will mean the country is in a better negotiating position. But European Council President Donald Tusk has warned that will not be the case. The crisis has roiled global markets as investors fret over the repercussions of a Greek debt default and its exit from the euro — developments that Continue Reading

Nuclear talks with Iran will miss deadline

VIENNA — A senior U.S. official acknowledged Sunday that Iran nuclear talks will go past the June 30 target date, as Iran’s foreign minister prepared to head home for consultations before returning to push for a breakthrough. Iranian media said Mohammed Javad Zarif’s trip was planned in advance. Still, the fact that he was leaving the talks so close to what had been the Tuesday deadline reflected both that the talks had a ways to go and his need to get instructions on how to proceed on issues where the sides remain apart. FOLLOW THE DAILY NEWS ON FACEBOOK. CLICK HERE TO "LIKE." Among the issues is how much access Tehran should give to UN experts monitoring his country’s compliance to any deal. The U.S. insists on more intrusive monitoring than Iran is ready to give. With these and other disputes still unresolved, the likelihood that the target deadline for an Iran nuclear deal could slip was increasingly growing even before the U.S. confirmation. ON A MOBILE DEVICE? WATCH THE VIDEO HERE.  Continue Reading

Lindsay Lohan may flee to Monaco to avoid jail time if community service hours aren’t completed by deadline: report

In her latest act, LiLo may be going from floozy to fugitive. Lindsay Lohan is plotting to flee to Monaco to avoid another jail stint if she doesn’t complete her community service on time, TMZ .com reported Saturday. The perpetually-troubled star managed to show up for community service at a Brooklyn daycare last week in a bid to avoid jail. The 28-year-old actress must complete 115 hours before May 28 to satisfy the probation requirement in her 2012 reckless driving case in California. Santa Monica prosecutors say they will likely ask for six months of jail time if Lohan isn't able to meet the deadline. “If she doesn’t get it done, she won’t go back to California for her court hearing,” reported. One of Lohan’s wealthy friends apparently owns a hotel in Monaco — and has made it clear that she can stay as long as she wants, the gossip site reported. Lohan couldn’t be reached — but she said Monday that she was thrilled to be back in New York. “Happy to be home in nyc with my family and friends. Missed this place,” the actress said in a Twitter message. Her father blasted the TMZ report. “Why would she even come back and attempt to do it, if she plans on leaving?” Michael Lohan told the Daily News. “By no means do I ever think Lindsay would flee to go anywhere.” Join the Conversation: Continue Reading

More than 65,000 sign up for de Blasio’s pre-K program as deadline looms

With about 24 hours left in the application period for the upcoming school year, 65,623 families had applied for Mayor de Blasio’s signature program of free, full-day prekindergarten, city officials said Thursday. City officials hope to enroll 70,000 kids in the universal pre-K programs for the term starting in September. The official application deadline is April 24. Deputy Mayor Richard Buery said families will still have a chance to enroll over the summer if they miss the deadline, but will have a better chance of landing a seat in a preferred program if they sign up now. “Don’t wait, apply by Friday,” said Buery. “That’s going to give you the best chance to get into the center that works for you.” On Saturday, de Blasio joined 2,000 volunteers to promote enrollment in pre-K programs at public schools and community-based organizations in all five boroughs. To enroll, call 311 or visit Continue Reading