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PAETEC to be sold to Arkansas firm

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In your Trail Mix today:

Rochester's PAETEC is being sold, as are HSBC's upstate branches.

The DEC doesn't have enough inspectors to deal with gas wells.

The attorney general on renewing Indian Point nuclear power plant.

Plus, a look back at the years of burning rivers.

Business

Rochester's PAETEC is being sold to Arkansas company Windstream, for about $891 million.  That leaves the fate of PAETEC's massive headquarters project (the lynchpin of Rochester's downtown redevelopment strategy) unclear (Democrat and Chronicle).

PAETEC isn't the only firm with an Arkansas deal in the works - Seneca Foods is considering a merger with Allens Inc., an Arkasas vegetable processor with plants in Genesee County (Andrea Deckert, Rochester Business Journal).

HSBC's upstate New York branches are being sold to First Niagara for about a billion dollars - it's also trimming about 10 percent of its work force internationally (Jonathan Epstein, Buffalo News).

The governor says that's the "best possible outcome for HSBC's employees and branches" (Jimmy Vielkind, Capitol Confidential).

Canadians shoppers clustered on the three bridges to the U.S. on Sunday afternoon as a rise in their dollar against the U.S. dollar coincided with a national holiday (Democrat and Chronicle).

The Niagara Falls airport is pushing a "gambling, golfing and shopping" deal to encourage tourism to the region (Thomas J. Prohaska, Buffalo News).

New York colleges made $3.5 million in 2010 on credit card offers that bear the school's name or logo (Brian Tumulty, Gannett).

Energy

New York only has 14 inspectors capable of reviewing 13,000 wells, a number an energy economics professor calls "woefully short" (Edward McAllister, Reuters).

Madison County's landfill could soon be run entirely using the energy produced by a series of solar panels (Alaina Potrikus, Post-Standard).

Anti-fracking activists are taking people on a "Marcellus Shale Reality Tour" to show them drilling sites in person (Matt Hughes, Wilkes-Barre Times Leader).

New York isn't the only place that's looking to Pennsylvania's experience with natural gas drilling for advice - Austria has been visiting PA's drilling fields to see how the process is unfolding (Donald Gilliand, Harrisburg Patriot News).

Pennsylvania officials are still having trouble tracking how many jobs have been created by the natural gas boom (Alyssa Murphy, Williamsport Sun-Gazette).

New York attorney general Eric Schneiderman was on New York NOW over the weekend, arguing that Indian Point nuclear power plant shouldn't be relicensed in 2013 because of its proximity to population centers.  You can watch the video with Karen DeWitt below.

Drilling firm Chesapeake Energy is "doubling down" on the yet-to-be-plumbed Utica Shale after big earnings (Scott Detrow, Pennsylvania State Impact).

Last year the Innovation Trail's Daniel Robison brought you the story of Lackawanna's mayor, hell bent on transitioning a brownfield into a wind farm.  Now six new turbines are going up on the property (Jay Tokasz, Buffalo News).

Politics

The layers of committees are getting thicker, as the governor adds a "chairman's committee" to his regional councils (My-Ly Nguyen, Press & Sun-Bulletin).

New York City now has an economic council, to be co-chaired by the chancellor of CUNY and the CEO of American Express (Colby Hamilton, The Empire).

County executives are still wary of how the state's new tax cap will affect what they call unfunded mandates like Medicaid.  See video of the executive director of New York's Association of Counties discussing his concerns (Maureen McManus, State of Politics/Capital Tonight).

The governor and the lieutenant governor spent last week making up for "lost time" on the regional councils initiative (Tom Tobin, Democrat and Chronicle).

But the councils missed the ball on drawing more young professionals into the fold, argues Democrat and Chronicle columnist Todd Clausen.

Infrastructure improvements around the U.S. are stalled as the House argues about how to pay for upgrades (Jill Terreri, Democrat and Chronicle).

Environment

An invasive clam that helps foster algae infestation has been found in the Finger Lakes.  Bad news for the lakes from a mollusk that's ironically called the "good luck clam" in parts of Asia (Mary Esch, AP).

Homeowners in Buffalo are mad that their homes are no longer part of a promised noise abatement program near the airport (Aaron Besecker, Buffalo News).

Great Lakes Law has a review of "Burning Rivers: Revival of Four Urban-Industrial Rivers that Caught on Fire."  Spoiler alert: Buffalo makes an appearance!

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