While You Were Out: Sept. 11, 2019

We’re over the hump, CivMixers. It’s all downhill to the weekend from here.

Headlines…

President Donald Trump said his administration will propose banning thousands of flavors used in e-cigarettes to combat a recent surge in underage vaping.

The FDA will develop guidelines to remove from the market all e-cigarette flavors except tobacco, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told reporters during an Oval Office appearance with the president, first lady Melania Trump and the acting FDA commissioner.

Purdue Pharma and its owners, members of the Sackler family, have tentatively reached the first comprehensive settlement with lawyers representing thousands of municipal governments, tribes and states nationwide that are suing the pharmaceutical industry for the devastation resulting from the opioid epidemic.

A Chinese businesswoman charged with lying to a Secret Service agent and trespassing at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago club in Florida was found guilty following a bizarre trial.

A bill meant to make it easier for state workers who volunteered at the World Trade Center site in the aftermath of the Sept. 11 to file claims for sick leave was signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo today.

Family members of the nearly 3,000 victims of 9/11 once again gathered at the Ground Zero memorial site to mark the 18th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks.

Trump laid a wreath at the Pentagon, telling victims’ relatives there: “This is your anniversary of personal and permanent loss.”

Former President George W. Bush, who was president during the attacks, placed a wreath at the site where Flight 77 hit the Pentagon, killing 184 people.

Sept. 11 commemoration events also took place across the Capital Region.

America is more racially diverse than at any point in history, and racial minorities are becoming more geographically dispersed than ever before.

In a major first, scientists have detected water vapor and possibly even liquid water clouds that rain in the atmosphere of a strange exoplanet that lies in the habitable zone of its host star about 110 light-years from Earth.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division is monitoring developments in the collapse of Clifton Park-based MyPayrollHR and is prepared to step in if there’s no quick resolution, a spokesperson confirmed.

The NYC Council is planning to repeal the ban on conversation therapy it passed with much fanfare just two years ago, an unusual maneuver designed to sidestep a lawsuit from an anti-LGBTQ hate group based in Arizona.

Cars belonging to Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie’s office have been caught speeding by traffic cameras an astounding seven times since 2016, including two times in 2019, according to data scraped by traffic-ticket bot HowsMyDriving.

A bill introduced this week by Democratic Assemblyman Angelo Santabarbara would require all U.S. and New York state flags sold in the state be made in America with American labor.

More than half of the former St. Clare’s Hospital employees who were fully vested in the now-shuttered hospital’s pension plan have been told that they will never receive a dime for their retirement.

After speaking with state Sen. Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie said there’s no appetite within the Legislature to heed the governor’s call to combine the presidential primary with another primary election for congressional and state seats.

The governor announced 20 firefighters from the state DEC will be traveling to California to assist in fighting wildfires.

State education officials have been bombarded with more than 140,000 public comments opposing a plan that would boost governmental control over private and religious schools.

Frontier Town, the state’s newest Adirondack campground, opened June 28 with promises to be a “unique, world-class” facility for traditional tent campers, RVers and equestrian campers alike. Horse riders are thus far unimpressed.

Organizers of the country’s largest bull-riding tour are chipping in to repair the Financial District’s “Charging Bull” statue, which was vandalized last week by a religious zealot.

NYPIRG’s Blair Horner weighs in on the start of work by a commission tasked with establishing a statewide public campaign finance system.

Scientists at General Electric Co.’s Global Research Center in Niskayuna have been awarded a four-and-a-half-year, $8.6 million grant through the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to create a new computer hardware security system.

Elected officials and business owners unveiled a plaque in Riverfront Park in Rensselaer marking the first Grand Slam ever recorded by Major League Baseball back in 1881.

Two Saratoga County 4-H members will be competing at national and international levels for Dairy Cattle Judging Contests.

An ostrich – or maybe an emu? – was on the loose in Guilderland today. It was captured and is safely home with its owner.

Legendary oil tycoon and corporate raider T. Boone Pickens, who reveled in giving millions to his favorite charities, has died at age 91.

Photo credit: George Fazio.

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