Good morning, CivMixers. It’s Wednesday, and there are two rather dubious anniversaries to note.
The first: On this day in 1991, police in Milwaukee arrested Jeffrey Dahmer, also known as the Milwaukee Cannibal or the Milwaukee Monster, a serial killed and sex offender who later confessed to murdering 17 men and boys.
Dahmer, who confessed to the murders that dated back to his first victim in 1978, saw his insanity plea rejected in court. He was convicted and sentenced to 15 life terms. Though he survived one attempt on his life in July 1994, Dahmer was killed by another inmate later that same year.
Also on this day in 2011, eight people died in a bombing in Oslo and another 69 people – most ranging in age from 16 to 22, some as young as 13 – died on nearby Utoya island in what was the deadliest attack in Norway since World War II.
The terror attack was perpetrated by Anders Behring Breivik, who was described as a right-wing Christian extremist with a hatred of Muslims. On Aug. 24, 2012, Breivik was judged sane and sentenced to 21 years in prison. (Norway does not have the death penalty).
Twenty-one years is the maximum possible sentence, but it could be extended if he is still considered a threat to society.
On a MUCH lighter – and perhaps well needed after all that – note…it’s National Hot Dog Day. Around 1870, Charles Feltman, a German immigrant, began to sell hot dogs out of a stand on Coney Island. He sold over 3,600 frankfurters in a bun that year alone.
And the rest, as they say, is history.
It’s going to be cloudy and humid today, with a chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon, a few of which may be severe. You know the drill there. Temperatures will be in the high 80s.
And now, the news…
President Donald Trump warned the coronavirus pandemic in the United States will probably “get worse before it gets better,” adding: “That’s something I don’t like saying about things, but that’s the way it is, it’s what we have.”
Trump resumed his White House coronavirus briefings last night for the first time since they stopped in April, speaking for almost a half-hour, calling COVID-19 the “China virus” and urging people to wear a mask in crowded areas.
Most of the relief measures included in the historic stimulus package Congress passed in March are coming to an end, even as the financial suffering of millions of Americans, and the virus to blame, shows no sign of abating.
The price tag for the next COVID-19 aid package could quickly swell above $1 trillion as White House negotiators negotiate with Congress over money to reopen schools, prop up small businesses, boost virus testing and keep cash flowing to Americans while the virus crisis deepens in the U.S.
A U.S. Senate Republican proposal on the next coronavirus relief package will include $70 billion for K-12 schools, with half that amount reserved for schools that reopen fully for in-person instruction.
New York City’s progress fighting the coronavirus is doing little to help retailers, who say business in the city that never sleeps has become worse than anywhere else in the country.
Work from home and the reduced need for employees in New York’s financial and professional-services industries have prompted some companies to consider paring their presence in the city by at least 20 percent, according to a study on the economic impact of Covid-19.
Around New York City, recruiters and hiring managers say the pandemic has upended the hiring process in ways large and small, for better and for worse.
Walmart said it would close stores on Thanksgiving Day this year, in another indication of how retailers are adapting their business to a global pandemic that shows few signs of easing.
The Plainview-based children’s clothing chain Denny’s is suing its insurance company in federal court, joining businesses across the country that are fighting for insurance payouts to cover their losses during the COVID-19 shutdown.
Tailored Brands, which owns suit sellers Men’s Wearhouse and Jos. A. Bank, is shuttering hundreds of stores and drastically reducing its corporate workforce as the coronavirus pandemic continues to decimate the retail industry.
Survey results released by the New York Farm Bureau showed that 65 percent of agriculture businesses consider themselves to be negatively or very negatively impacted by the ongoing pandemic. Just over 530 businesses responded to the survey between June 8 and June 17.
New York City recorded zero coronavirus deaths on Monday in what would be the first day without deaths in the city since the pandemic began to ravage the city in March, according to state health data.
Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy confirmed 27 new cases of coronavirus overnight yesterday, the county’s second-highest daily increase this month.
Seventy-four Long Island residents tested for COVID-19 over a five-day period earlier this month received false positive results, according to Nassau and Suffolk counties.
California is on the brink of overtaking New York with the highest number of cumulative coronavirus cases confirmed since the pandemic began.
The number of people who caught coronavirus by mid-May in New York, Philadelphia, San Francisco and other regions is likely “much” higher than official case counts suggest, a new CDC study reveals.
New research suggests that antibodies the immune system makes to fight the new coronavirus may only last a few months in people with mild illness, but that doesn’t mean protection also is gone or that it won’t be possible to develop an effective vaccine.
More than half of America is now on the tri-state quarantine list, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said, as COVID continues to surge virtually unabated across the country. A total of 31 states are now on the list, with 10 added and one removed.
State authorities have suspended the liquor licenses of four bars and restaurants — including one in Deer Park — for failing to adhere to social distancing and other mandates aimed at controlling spread of the coronavirus, Cuomo said.
All told, the state Liquor Authority has suspended 27 bar and restaurant alcohol licenses for violations of social distancing rules as public officials try to keep the coronavirus outbreak under control.
Accompanied by a slide of outdoor parties in Astoria and on the Lower East Side during a news briefing, Cuomo reiterated that it is up to local governments to enforce outdoor-dining rules and laid out what he plans to do if large groups of people continue to gather outside bars and restaurants.
Cuomo said he believes the controversy surrounding the state’s ruling that bars must serve food, too, in order to provide alcohol to customers stems from a “disconnect,” adding: “Bars are congregations of people milling about, and that is exactly what we are trying to avoid.”
Colleges and universities in New York can play football and other sports this fall, but they will have to do so without fans in the stands because of the coronavirus pandemic, according to an order from the governor.
Cuomo is warning incoming SUNY and CUNY freshmen he may have to slash the tuition relief program for middle class families because of the fiscal crisis fueled by the coronavirus crisis — unless the federal government delivers a rescue package.
Cuomo announced the largest combined clean energy solicitations ever issued in the U.S., seeking up to 4,000 megawatts of renewable capacity to combat climate change.
Democratic state lawmakers are considering legislation this week that would partially roll back generous lawsuit liability protections for hospitals and nursing homes related to the coronavirus crisis.
The Assembly passed the Protect Our Courts Act, which ensures that undocumented immigrants can participate in the justice system without fear of being deported. It would prohibit immigration related civil arrests against anyone traveling to or from a court proceeding.
The state Senate voted to stop the selling of dogs, cats and rabbits in pet stores, ending what some state lawmakers and animal advocates say was a “puppy-mill-to-pet-store pipeline.” It’s unclear if the Assembly will also take up the bill.
New York is closer to becoming the 20th state to adopt an automatic voter registration system.
Void of the chants from advocates and the buzz of an active Capitol, state lawmakers this week began voting on a flurry of legislation ranging from sustaining school aid during the pandemic to streamlining the voter registration process and removing provisions that have long led to absentee ballots being cast aside.
The State Legislature today is expected to pass a bill that would outlaw most uses of a chemical degreaser which had been used for decades on U.S. Navy aircraft and which has been a major contributor to the threat posed by the Grumman Plume to Long Island’s drinking water.
State legislators have reached a deal to designate as felonies illegally dumping construction debris or participating in a dumping scheme, a move that was sparked by the massive disposal of contaminated material that closed a Brentwood park for more than three years.
In a stunning development, community activist Emily Gallagher has apparently pulled off an upset of 46-year-incumbent Assemblyman Joe Lentol as the final absentees were counted for the Democratic primary in the gentrifying 50th district that takes in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint and Williamsburg.
A month after resigning as state Senate Republican leader, newly minted lobbyist John Flanagan is holding on to his state campaign war chest bulging with $376,018, even as the SRCC, heading into a crucial election cycle, has just under $600,000 on hand.
The New York Republican Party sees an opening to once again reclaim the mayoralty in the Big Apple after eight years of Mayor Bill de Blasio as anger builds over a surge in crimes and unruly protests.
Citigroup vice chairman Raymond McGuire has hired Jerry Goldfeder — an election attorney and New York political insider who has worked for Cuomo, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama and numerous elected local officials — to start laying the foundations for a mayoral bid. If successful, he would be the city’s second black mayor.
A banner unfurled over the Staten Island Expressway shows de Blasio smirking in a Che Guevara shirt — while holding up Lady Liberty’s severed, bloody head.
A man slugged an MTA bus driver who told him he needed a mask before getting on board — the latest in a surge of attacks on transit workers in New York City.
A 33-year-old Albany man was charged with a hate crime after he allegedly punched a Central Avenue store clerk who asked him to wear a mask earlier this month.
The MTA has quietly slashed roughly 3,000 jobs over the last year — making good on Cuomo’s promise to hack away at the Byzantine agency that employs some 70,000 workers.
Authorities have made 127 arrests and confiscated “two shipping containers'” worth of fireworks as part of an ongoing crackdown, the NYC sheriff announced.
Nina Kapur, the CBS2 news reporter who died in Brooklyn after falling from a ride-sharing electric moped, was a tremendous young talent, de Blasio said. Her death has shined a spotlight on Revel, a popular moped rental service.
Trump administration officials defended federal officers deployed in Portland after criticism that the agents were unconstitutionally “kidnapping” protesters in the city.
Trump’s top Homeland Security official denounced accusations that federal officers cracking down on protests in Portland are “Gestapo” as backlash mounted over the administration’s aggressive response to unrest in the Oregon city.
Trump raised eyebrows as he sent his best regards to Ghislaine Maxwell, the imprisoned associate of Jeffrey Epstein who’s alleged to have procured dozens of underage girls for the late pedophile’s sexual schemes.
The House of Representatives passed a comprehensive annual defense bill, fighting back a challenge from progressive Democrats to cut the spending by 10 percent and plowing past a veto threat from Trump.
Investigators believe a gun recovered from the apparent suicide scene of an attorney in Liberty, NY matches the one used to kill a New Jersey federal judge’s son and wound her husband Sunday, law enforcement sources say.
“Anti-feminist” lawyer Roy Den Hollander’s split from his Russian bride nearly 20 years ago helped trigger a women-hating tailspin that culminated in his murderous rampage at a female federal judge’s home, according to court documents and his ex-wife’s divorce lawyer.
A Minnesota judge lifted a gag order in the criminal case against four former officers charged in death of George Floyd, but said he would take a news media coalition’s request to make body camera footage more widely available under advisement.
Den Hollander wrote about posing as a Federal Express worker to track down his ex years before he allegedly used a similar ploy in his murderous rampage at the home of a New Jersey federal judge.
The Department of Homeland Security reportedly expanded the authority of its officials to collect information about protesters threatening to damage or destroy public memorials and statues even if they aren’t on federal government property.
Republican Chris Jacobs of western New York became the newest House member yesterday, taking the oath of office to fill the unexpired term of Chris Collins, who left Congress after pleading guilty to federal insider trading charges.
Planned Parenthood of Greater New York said it will ditch the name of Margaret Sanger — one of the founders of the national organization — from its Lower Manhattan clinic over her “harmful connections to the eugenics movement.”
Though the social network has served as one of the primary means of spreading the conspiracy, QAnon’s days on Twitter may be numbered, as the company announced that it will be taking “strong enforcement action” against QAnon activity that violates its policies.
Facebook is creating new teams dedicated to studying and addressing potential racial bias on its core platform and Instagram unit, in a departure from the company’s prior reluctance to explore the way its products affect different minority groups.
LinkedIn will cut about 960 jobs, or around 6 percent of its workforce, as the Microsoft-owned professional networking site grapples with falling demand for its recruitment services due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Warren County is working to trace more than 70 people who may have been exposed to the novel coronavirus after learning that a person infected with the virus recently attended two parties where many were not wearing masks.
Schalmont High School officials canceled a senior formal that had been scheduled for tomorrow due to what they described as a lack of interest, but neglected to inform the venue that was supposed to host the event.
The Covid-19 pandemic continues to take a bite out of the the prestigious Bassmaster tournament schedule in Upstate New York this summer — though two big tournaments are proceeding as planned, with some restrictions.
After 26 years of service, Saratoga County’s director of public health, Catherine Duncan, has announced she will retire.
Tipsy Moose posted on its Facebook page that the Albany restaurant on New Scotland Avenue was closed yesterday afternoon “in order to sanitize and allow staff time to be tested for possible exposure to COVID-19.
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan vetoed an ordinance that would strip the ability of the city’s Planning Board to grant developers waivers from rules within the city’s zoning code.
A statue of Philip Schuyler still stands in front of Albany City Hall as officials say they’re waiting on a team will be sent to determine its structural integrity before removal.
The Frances Young Tang Teaching Museum and Art Gallery at Skidmore College has received a $1.5 million grant from the Laurie M. Tisch Illumination Fund. The grant will build the Tang’s endowment and expand its education programs.
Price Chopper and Market 32 will stop using plastic bags on Aug. 1. The company is urging customers to bring their own reusable bags, which customers will have to pack themselves due to the pandemic.
Photo credit: George Fazio.