While You Were Out: Dec. 27, 2019

The big breaking news of this post-Christmas Friday: Radio shock jock Don Imus is dead.

He passed away at the age of 79 this morning at Baylor Scott and White Medical Center in College Station, Texas, after being hospitalized on Christmas Eve, a representative said. The cause of death was not given.

Known for his outspoken comments and off-color humor, he hosted “Imus in the Morning” in New York for nearly 50 years. He ended the show in 2018.

The stock market is closing in on its best year in two decades. With only two days of trading to go, the S&P 500 could fare better than it has since 1997.

President Donald Trump fired off a few tweets before hitting the links while on vacation today, lavishing praise on actor Jon Voight, quoting a critic of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and boasting about the roaring stock market while vowing “THE BEST IS YET TO COME!”

In a rare show of bipartisan unity, Republicans and Democrats are planning to try to force Trump to take a more active stand on human rights in China, preparing veto-proof legislation that would punish top Chinese officials for detaining more than one million Muslims in internment camps.

Video recordings of interviews were obtained by the New York Times of the men of Alpha platoon, SEAL Team 7, whose blistering testimony about their platoon chief was dismissed by Trump when he upended the military code of justice to protect Chief Gallagher from the punishment.

Citing New York’s looming $6 billion budget deficit, a state commission has rejected proposed pay raises for New York state judges that would have rolled out over the next four years — even though a majority of the seven-person panel’s members voted in favor of the modest increases.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced a proposal to launch a consumer friendly website where New Yorkers can look up and compare the costs of different medical procedures at hospitals around the state.

The Centers for Disease Control said 28 states were now reporting high flu activity – seven new states since last week.

Beginning Jan. 6th N.Y. employers can no longer ask about salary history. The legislation is an effort to close the gender wage gap in N.Y., according to a press release from the N.Y.S. Department of Labor.

Investigators are focusing on DNA evidence in their efforts to build a case in the killing of Tessa Majors, the Barnard College student who was stabbed during a park mugging in Manhattan early this month, officials said.

The chief financial officer of Domino’s Pizza Group, David Bauernfeind, 51, has died in a snorkeling accident.

Former Brooklyn Republican state Sen. Marty Golden received an unsolicited gift from city inspectors Christmas Eve when they slapped a Bay Ridge apartment complex he co-owns with a stop-work order for failing to protect pedestrians with scaffolding.

Four Jewish women were targeted in two more anti-Semitic attacks in Brooklyn this week, police said.

Albany’s Arbor Hill and Buckingham Lake neighborhoods, located on the city’s east and west sides, were the focus of a National Public Radio (NPR) report last week which highlighted racial divides in access to health, nutritional, and educational opportunities, a reality for kids in urban areas across the nation.

Rensselaer County Sheriff Patrick Russo announced he won’t run for a third term four years from now.

A man was found dead in a vehicle parked at a Northway rest area Friday in Queensbury.

This year’s version of Stewart’s Shops’ annual Holiday Match program raised over $1.79 million for several local children’s organizations.

A Saratoga Lake resident is concerned with the rapid pace of development around the recreational waters and has asked its governing body to fund a comprehensive and independent study on its watershed.

Hoppin’ into a Black & White is no longer an option for the City of Troy.

A Watervliet driver was charged with driving while intoxicated on Christmas Eve after smashing into a vehicle occupied by four people on Glenmont Road, town police said.

A village of Ravena man is in Albany County jail on $25,000 bail after being arrested on weapons charges, Albany County Sheriff Craig D. Apple Sr. said.

The Saints on Sunday will host their second annual Sensory Friendly and Autism Awareness Game, taking on Holy Cross at 2 p.m. at the Times Union Center.

A raccoon has moved into a Brooklyn subway station and is not at all interested in departing.

Looking for an environmentally friendly way to get rid of your Christmas tree? Try feeding it to some goats.

Check out Sen. Jessica Ramos’ “Grub Street Diet” in New York magazine, she says anything from Queens is “always better.”

Photo credit: George Fazio.

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