While You Were Out: June 28, 2019

Hello, weekend! I hope you managed to get out and soak up some of the sunshine, CivMixers. It was a beautiful summer day, the kind of day that makes you happy to be alive and well in upstate.

Remember how I mentioned that New York has closed primaries, which means you have to be a member of a party to participate in its contest? Well, apparently that’s not common knowledge…

The election for the Cohoes Common Council seat being vacated at the end of the year by Steve Napier may have to be redone after 20 voters not enrolled in the party cast ballots in the Democratic primary. Elections officials are investigating the votes cast in the 5th Ward race after they discovered about 20 voters who were added to the poll books by poll inspectors.

At the national level…

The U.S. Supreme Court will decide whether the Trump administration may shut down a program that shields some 800,000 young, undocumented immigrants from deportation. Arguments will be heard next term, which starts in October, and the court will probably issue its decision in the spring or summer of 2020 – just in time for the 2020 presidential campaign.

A day after a bruising debate in which Sen. Kamala Harris laced into his history on civil rights, former Vice President Joe Biden provided a lengthy and vigorous defense of his record, saying that “30 seconds to 60 seconds on a campaign debate exchange can’t do justice to a lifetime committed to civil rights.”

Among the takeaways from the two nights of Democratic debates: Biden is a fragile front-runner. Harris has a big chance to build political momentum. And the competition between Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders is intensifying.

Was Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand disrespected by the NBC debate moderators? Jerry Zremski of The Buffalo News sure thinks so, noting that due to her insistence on interrupting early on, she never got a stand-alone question, and was treated “not like a 10-year senator with a host of detailed policy proposals, but as a nuisance.”

While in Israel, Gov. Andrew Cuomo visited some of its the holiest sites — the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Old Jerusalem and the Western Wall, as well as Yad Vashem, the country’s official memorial to victims of the Holocaust.

Authorities in the Dominican Republic announced that they have arrested the man behind the shooting of baseball great David Ortiz in an apparent case of mistaken identity.

Former President Jimmy Carter cast doubt on the legitimacy of Donald Trump’s presidency.

Closer to home…

The state Attorney General’s Office announced it created the first-ever Diversity and Inclusion Office within the agency, which will be led by Sandra Grannum.

Persons convicted of sex offenses in New York do not have to specifically disclose to the state that they have, and use, an account on Facebook, so long as they register their email address and don’t use a fake name, the state’s highest court ruled.

Schoharie limo crash driver Nauman Hussain’s attorney Lee Kindlon says that Hussain has provided his DNA test, as ordered by the court last month.

Pete Philo, a former NBA scout with ties to the Capital Region, was once jailed for raping and impregnating a 15-year-old girl who formerly was one of his students. Despite the criminal conviction, he went on to a long career working in the front offices of the Dallas Mavericks, Minnesota Timberwolves and Indiana Pacers.

The town of Schodack is again facing a legal challenge from homeowners over its approval of a commercial project next to a residential neighborhood. A Castleton couple is suing the zoning board due to its granting to Stewart’s Shops a variance from the local quality control.

Plans to create a computer chip design hub in Saratoga Springs took a major leap forward today when officials with the Saratoga Economic Development Corp. revealed that they have convinced one of the Big Three design firms to become a partner in the effort.

The Troy Police Department is months away from launching its pilot program for body cameras, though City Council President Carmella Montello originally called for them over two years ago.

Today was the last day on the job for East Greenbush Chief Christopher Lavin, who has been in charge of the department for almost three decades.

Walter Kelly, the 69-year-old man found hurt in a parking lot near SPAC last week, has now died.

For all you “Seinfeld” fans out there, a pilgrimage to NYC might soon be in order.

In the market for a new Bentley? The state has one its going to auction off on July 10. (It was seized and forfeited earlier this year to pay restitution to the Medicaid program).

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