Morning Read, Upstate: $500 Million in Cuts

Former Liberal Party head Ray Harding pleaded guilty, and is cooperating with Andrew Cuomo's pension fund investigation.

Cuomo will unveil a bill this week creating a panel that oversees the pension fund.

Barack Obama is coming to New York for a high-dollar fund-raiser.

David Paterson cut agency spending by 11 percent, or $500 million.

"I'm not as much negotiating as much as I'm trying to set an example," Paterson told the Times Union. "I'm the leader and I'll throw in the first, probably, 15 percent of the cuts that we do."

E.J. McMahon called it "fiscal minimism."

The News says "it is time for Paterson to get specific" about how he will deal with the budget deficit.

Two of the counts against State Senator Hiram Monserrate were dismissed. (But four charges remain.)

This means that prosecutors will have to prove Monserrate acted intentionally, not just recklessly.

The witness list was set for Joe Bruno's corruption trial.

It includes Bill Hammond!

(Hammond wrote this week about how committing a violent felony a second time gets you a shorter sentence.)

Charlie Rangel's spokesman shoots down the Rangel-Paterson resignation theory.

Hans Von Spakovsky says Paterson consistently disenfranchises military voters.

Sheldon Silver bought a young woman raspberry passion tea in Syracuse.

Paterson cracked some jokes in Poughkeepsie this weekend.

Exactly which 2,000 jobs did Bill Owens create?

State Senator James Seward whined about the budget.

New York needs $11.6 billion for high speed rail.

Hudson Valley businesses are, sadly, getting ready to face the M.T.A. payroll tax.

Today would have been Erastus Corning II's 100th birthday.

Representative Eric Massa wants to know the strategy in Afghanistan.

And below, NYSUT president Richard Iannuzzi says he'll bring the organization's convention back to Buffalo:

Morning Read, Upstate: $500 Million in Cuts