While You Were Out: Oct. 10, 2019

I’m a little bit late to the party with today’s roundup, CivMixers. But you know what they say: Better late than never…We kick things off with some very interesting political news, that ups the ante considerably when it comes to the congressional races to watch in the coming year.

Westchester Democratic Rep, Nita Lowey, 82, the first woman to lead the powerful House Appropriations Committee, unexpectedly announced that she would not seek re-election in 2020.

In an interview following the announcement, Lowey, who is Jewish, said the decision came after reflection during the High Holy Days, but claimed speculation that she decided not to run due to primary challenges she faces was “ridiculous.”

Lowey’s retirement could open the door for a political newcomer with big political name — Chelsea Clinton.

A representative for Clinton did not immediately respond to an email seeking comment. Lowey said she has not spoken to Clinton or her representatives.

Two associates of the president’s private lawyer Rudy Giuliani, who helped fund efforts to investigate one of President Trump’s political rivals, were charged with violating campaign finance laws in a new criminal case that touched on their work in Ukraine and alleged financial ties to Russia.

Attorney General William Barr met privately last night with Rupert Murdoch, the media mogul who is one of Trump’s frequent confidants but whose Fox News is viewed by the president as more hostile toward him than it used to be.

The 21-year-old man charged with capital murder in the fatal shooting of 22 people at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, pleaded not guilty during a brief initial hearing.

After California passed a law last week enabling college athletes to cash-in on their stardom without fear of penalty, multiple New York lawmakers are wading into the debate with their own bills shaking up the business model of intercollegiate sports.

Attorneys for the families of victims killed in last year’s Schoharie limousine crash say the company’s operator is still culpable despite recent court filings that allege Mavis Discount Tire employees in Saratoga Springs falsified invoices and failed to perform brake work on the vehicle several months before it crashed.

A coalition of advocacy groups this week released a letter urging the commission determining the specifics of New York’s system of publicly financed campaigns to make public a draft report of its potential recommendations.

Bronx Democratic Councilman Fernando Cabrera threw his hat in the ring to challenge democratic socialist Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the Democratic primary, vowing to run as the pro-Amazon, pro-capitalist candidate.

A coalition of 20 organizations that range from advocates for the environment, transportation, local government and business urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo to sign a measure that would pave the way for municipalities to allow electric bikes and scooters on their streets.

The Colonie Police Department is investigating an incident caught on video in which a man claiming to be a police officer confronted two teenagers before punching one in the chest and calling the other a racial slur.

Daniel Harrigan Sr. said his new role as Scotia’s police chief won’t stop him from getting out in the field and continuing to be a visible presence in the community.

General Electric Co. is set to begin taking down the 400,000 square feet of buildings that used to comprise the firm’s electrical capacitor factory, which closed in 2016.

The state Department of Environmental Conservation is ordering the operators of the S.A. Dunn landfill to upgrade the facility’s gas collection system designed to keep hydrogen sulfide odors from escaping.

Rotterdam Town Board member Steve Signore is pushing to add a third judge to the bench in the Rotterdam court system instead of boosting the annual salary of the two part-time local justices to $60,000, which is about the average median household income in this suburb.

The 37-acre public park the town of Colonie purchased after a contentious referendum will receive $250,000 from the state.

A $30.4 million renovation has been completed at the University at Albany, the Dormitory Authority of the State of New York said.

The Saratoga Performing Arts Center will continue its 2019 season through December with eight events, including performances by the Vienna Boys Choir and another ensemble visiting from Austria.

State Police say a man from Bronx was driving 134 miles per hour on the Northway this morning.

The Nobel Committee waded into controversy yet again with its prize in literature, awarding it to a right-leaning writer, Peter Handke, who delivered a eulogy at the funeral of Slobodan Milosevic, the former leader of Yugoslavia who was tried for war crimes.

Gymnast Simone Biles secured her fifth all-around world championship —in what could reasonably be considered the least suspenseful international title event in all of sports this year.

The biomusical about Michael Jackson will open on Broadway next summer, his estate said.

Two years after Matt Lauer was abruptly fired by NBC News for sexual misconduct, more questions are emerging about the former “Today” show host’s behavior and whether bosses looked the other way at problems involving one of the network’s biggest stars.

Flags will be flown at half-staff across the state tomorrow to honor Sergeant Francis Currey – the last living New Yorker to have earned the Medal of Honor during World War II.

Photo credit: George Fazio.



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