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NY fruit farmers to appeal for federal disaster aid

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Matt Richmond
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WSKG
Cornell University orchards manager Eric Shatt stands in front of an apple orchard the morning after an April snowstorm.

Happy Friday! Here's today's Trail Mix:

New York fruit farmers want help.

Domestic solar manufacturers get a boost from the government.

And: Cuomo biting the hand that feeds him?

Economy

The results of this spring's strange weather are in and it's bad news for New York's apple growers (Sean Dobbin, Democrat & Chronicle).

The U.S. will slap a tariff on Chinese-made solar panels. The penalty will apply to about 31 percent of Chinese-made panels. While domestic manufacturers praise the move, American solar installers who benefit from the low-priced panels are criticizing it (Keith Bradsher, New York Times).

Rochester added 7,100 private sector jobs during the 12-month period ending in April. That's more than Buffalo, Syracuse and Albany combined (Tom Tobin, Democrat & Chronicle).

Buffalo is gaining jobs - but far below state and national averages (David Robinson, Buffalo News).

New York State approved Erie County's application to start a land bank, allowing for the creation of a non-profit that can take control of vacant properties (Aaron Besecker, Buffalo News).

Wal-Mart is adding 30,000 square feet, mostly for groceries, onto its store in East Syracuse. The store had previously been slated for closure while the company looked to open a new store elsewhere (Bob Niedt, Post-Standard).

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is buying newspapers. That's right, newspapers - 63 of them, including the Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Winston-Salem Journal (Associate Press).

Hydrofracking

Assemblywoman Barbara Lifton (D-Ithaca) appeared on Capital Tonight to talk about legislation that would support local bans on hydrofracking by strengthening Home Rule (Capital Tonight).

While some towns in the Southern Tier are debating gas drilling bans (Matt Richmond, WSKG/Innovation Trail), others have begun passing resolutions in support of drilling (Mary Perham, Corning Leader).

Politics

The much-touted Americans for Tax Reform pledge - a promise to never vote for a tax increase signed by all but 6 of the current batch of House Republicans - may be losing its iron grip over Congress. The pledge's author, Grover Norquist, doesn't appear to be too worried (Kate Nocera, Politico).

A law proposed by Gov. Andrew Cuomo may force the Committee to Save New York, a group that backs Cuomo, to reveal its donors. The group has collected more that $17 million, mostly from a few large donors (Associated Press).

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