While You Were Out: Sept. 10, 2019

A busy, busy day, from a news perspective, CivMixers. I hope it was a productive Tuesday for you, too.

There were big doings at the White House, where President Trump announced he had fired John Bolton, his third national security adviser, amid fundamental disagreements over how to handle major foreign policy challenges like Iran, North Korea and most recently Afghanistan.

Elsewhere…

Democratic 2020 candidates broadly agree that Trump has shaken the presidency loose from its constitutional limits and say the White House needs major new legal curbs, foreshadowing a potential era of reform akin to the post-Watergate period if any of them wins the election.

A court filing in Roger Stone’s case has been quietly replaced, raising questions about whether the original document improperly included personally identifiable information, including Trump’s cellphone number.

Seven states and the District of Columbia have sued the SEC, saying the regulatory agency is putting investors in jeopardy by relaxing rules for brokers.

“With this rule, the SEC is choosing Wall Street over Main Street,” said New York Attorney General Letitia James, who’s leading the coalition, in a statement. “Instead of adopting the investor protections of Dodd-Frank, this watered-down rule puts brokers first.”

James said her office filed a motion to block the Trump administration from implementing a rule change that would deny green cards and visas to immigrants who are seeking social services and other welfare programs.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo and 11 other Democratic governors sent a letter to Trump and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell urging the Republican leaders to pursue stricter federal gun-control measures.

About 24,000 SUNY and CUNY students used New York’s Excelsior scholarship in its second year, Cuomo announced. Recipients tend to have higher on-time graduate rates, and more freshmen are taking 15 credits in the first semester, he said.

Democratic Rep. Paul Tonko called on Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross to step down after reportedly threatening officials at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Apple kicked off its annual fall product launch today, announcing new iPhones, release dates and pricing for Apple TV+ and Apple Arcade, a new $499 Apple Watch Series 5, as well as a refreshed $329 iPad.

JCOPE denied a request from the New York chapter of Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM-NY) to keep its donors private. The decision can be appealed – a tactic that has been a successful option for organizations initially denied an exemption.

Former St. Clare’s Hospital workers have turned their anger over the loss of their pension benefits toward the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, which purchased the land where the hospital was built in the 1940s.

…Dozens of former St. Clare’s Workers are filing a lawsuit over the hospital’s pension fund.

Abby Tilsner, a 53-year-old nurse at Saint Peters Hospital, will challenge Albany County Executive Dan McCoy on the Socialist Workers line.

A 12-year-old boy stabbed another child, aged 13, in Schenectady and stole the wounded child’s bicycle, police said. The victim, who was stabbed in the back, needed to go to the hospital for treatment.

St. Peter’s Health Partners is entering into a joint venture agreement with a fast-growing chain of urgent care centers that will just about double its urgent care presence in the Capital Region.

Matthew Peter, the Albany Parking Authority executive director, former chief of staff to city Mayor Kathy Sheehan and the Democratic candidate for the county Legislature’s 5th District, was appointed to fill the vacant seat left by outgoing Legislator Chris Higgins.

The Rensselaer County Legislature will not be banning Styrofoam products itself, but will urge the state to consider the ban.

September is Suicide Prevention Month, and Siena College is launching a new campaign to address it head-on. It’s called, “Saints Say Suicide,” and it encourages direct communication as a means of intervention.

The declaration of emergency affecting the Village of Chatham following a water main break has now been lifted. However, a boil water advisory remains in effect until further notice.

The Fulton County Board of Supervisors believes it is the first county government in the state to pass a resolution formally opposing the new license plate replacement and fee requirement recently announced by the Cuomo administration.

Duanesburg schools Superintendent Frank Macri is expected to leave the district in December to take the superintendent job in Voorheesville, where he lives with his family.

The Democratic elections commissioner of upstate Onondaga County has been accused of driving for ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft during his regular business hours.

The Rochester Police Locust Club, the union representing city police officers, has filed a lawsuit to stop a referendum on a proposed law that would create a Police Accountability Board (PAB) with the power to discipline police officers.

Farm-to-table cuisine is coming to local school cafeterias in New York this fall thanks to a new state grant.

The judge in the insider trading case against Rep. Chris Collins has made his biggest decision in the case so far this year, and while it’s a secret for now, a bare-bones order the judge filed publicly appears to bode badly for the Republican WNY lawmaker.

After trying and failing to make headway in breakfast time and time again, Wendy’s is recommitting to the first meal of the day with a plan to invest $20 million and hire 20,000 additional employees in order to launch a nationwide breakfast menu in 2020.

An analyst at KeyBanc Capital Markets estimates Popeyes sold about 1,000 chicken sandwiches per store a day. The sandwich also accounted for about 30 percent of the fast-food chicken restaurant’s sales in the time it was available while store traffic doubled.

A new study says naps aren’t a lazy indulgence. In moderation, they may actually be good for your heart.

A Massachusetts man has posted a video online that appears to show the driver of a Tesla sleeping as the car speeds along a highway.

Photo credit: Colleen Ryan.

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