Tuesday, September 1, 2015

The President Addresses the GLACIER Conference (Full Speech)

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Child Nutrition Programs

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack delivers remarks on child nutrition programs ahead of the deadline for Congress to reauthorize the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act. The Center for American Progress sponsors this event.

Click here for video.

Source: C-Span

HUD 2015 National Fair Housing Conference

Part 1 - Housing and Urban Development Secretary (HUD) Julián Castro, former Vice President Walter Mondale, and Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA) are among the speakers addressing the 2015 National Fair Housing Training and Policy Conference in Washington, D.C.

Click here for video. 

Part 2 - Housing policy experts talked about residential segregation and diversity in U.S. cities.

This discussion was part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s 2015 National Fair Housing Training and Policy Conference.

Click here for video. 

Source: C-Span

Alaska Expanding Medicaid Under the Affordable Care Act

Statement by Press Secretary Josh Earnest

Governor Walker made the right decision to expand Medicaid to tens of thousands of Alaska residents, including Alaska Natives, beginning today. Alaska is the 29th state in addition to the District of Columbia to implement this option and prioritize the health of the state’s citizens over narrow political interests. Hospitals and businesses throughout Alaska will save on uncompensated care costs, and hardworking families will gain the peace of mind that comes with health security. Today’s news is an important step in ensuring that all Americans have access to quality, affordable health insurance, and we'll continue to work with the 21 states that have not yet taken advantage of Federal funds to expand Medicaid eligibility to over 4 million Americans who needlessly remain uninsured.

Source: The White House Press Office 

Cuomo: New Yorkers Should Create Emergency Plans as Part of National Preparedness Month

Governor Andrew Cuomo today announced that September is Preparedness Month across New York State and urged all New Yorkers to create an emergency plan that they can activate in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. In addition to forming an emergency plan that can help protect individuals, families and businesses in times of a crisis, the Governor also urged citizens to prepare a portable, emergency supply kit containing enough food, water, medications and other consumables to last seven to ten days. These recommendations can help save lives and reduce suffering in the event of a disaster.

"When disaster strikes, we want all New Yorkers to be prepared and ready to respond, Governor Cuomo said. “By planning ahead and taking a few simple safety steps, we can all be ready for unpredictable weather conditions and emergencies.”

Preparedness Month is a national effort sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The 2015 National Preparedness Month theme is – Don’t Wait. Communicate. Make Your Emergency Plan Today. FEMA encourages Americans to create a family emergency communications plan that includes up-to-date contact information for individuals that may need to be reached during a disaster.

In addition to the overall theme, each week of National Preparedness Month will also promote the following hazard focused themes:

· September 1 – 5: Flood
· September 6 – 12: Wildfire
· September 13 – 19: Hurricane
· September 20 – 26: Power Outage

To help New Yorkers prepare for an emergency, the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services (DHSES), in partnership with the New York National Guard, are offering Citizens Preparedness Corps training courses throughout the state. To date, more than 64,000 New Yorkers have completed a preparedness training course. Through this program, more citizens have received emergency preparedness training than at any other time in the state’s history. To register for a training course or to volunteer, visit the State’s Citizens Preparedness Corps website.

Below is a list of September’s preparedness training courses:

September 2015

Tuesday, September 1, 2015 - Syracuse
5:00 p.m. to 07:00 p.m.
New York State Fair
*Event is free with State Fair Admission*
581 State Fair Blvd.
Art & Home Center - Empire Theater
Syracuse, New York 13209

Wednesday, September 9, 2015 - Staten Island
7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Olympia Activity Center
1126 Olympia Boulevard
Staten Island, New York 10306

Tuesday, September 15, 2015 – Brookhaven (Suffolk County)
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Town of Brookhaven
1 Independence Hill
Farmingville, New York 11738

Thursday, September 17, 2015 - Jamesport (Suffolk County)
6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.
Jamesport Meeting House
1590 Main Road (corner of Manor Lane)
Jamesport, New York 11947

Tuesday, September 22, 2015 – Rosedale (Queens)
4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.
P.S. 195 William Haberle School
253-50 149th Avenue
Rosedale, New York 11422

Tuesday, September 22, 2015 - Manhattan
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Hudson Guild
441 West 26th Street
Manhattan, New York 10001

Wednesday, September 23, 2015 - Bronx
12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m.
Friendly Baptist Church
962 Ogden Avenue
Bronx, New York 10452

Wednesday, September 23, 2015 - Harlem
4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Harlem Hospital
506 Malcolm X Boulevard
Harlem, New York 10037

Thursday, September 24, 2015 – Laurelton (Queens)
7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
St. Luke Cathedral Church
133-21 232 Street
Laurelton, New York 11413

Saturday, September 26, 2015 – Erie County
10:00 AM – 12:00 PM
Cheektowaga Senior Center
3349 Broadway
Cheektowaga, NY 14227

Monday, September 28, 2015 – Forest Hills (Queens)
7:00 PM – 9:00 PM
Our Lady Queens of Martyrs School
72-55 Austin Street
Forest Hills, NY 11375 

Monday, September 28, 2015 – Montgomery County
5:00 P.M.
River Front Center
1250 Riverfront Center
Amsterdam, NY 12010 

More training classes are added frequently. To find out when Citizen Preparedness Corps training will be coming to your area, sign up to be notified of future classes at http://www.dhses.ny.gov/aware-prepare/nysprepare/registration/future-notify.cfm

John P. Melville, DHSES Commissioner, said, “New York has had 70 federally-declared disasters since 1954. This number represents two-times the national average of disasters so it reminds all of us of the need to be prepared in the event of an emergency. Developing an emergency plan, and preparing an emergency supply kit, can help individuals become better prepared. Our Citizens Preparedness training courses are a great way to get started on developing an emergency plan and knowing what to do in case of a disaster.”

To help keep New Yorkers informed of a variety of hazards, the state offers a website – NY-Alert. The state’s all-hazards alert and notification system, NY-Alert contains critical emergency-related information including instructions and recommended protective actions developed in real-time by emergency service personnel. NY-Alert sends individuals free messages on severe weather warnings, significant highway closures, hazardous materials spills, and many other emergency conditions. Additionally, the service provides response actions being taken by local and state agencies and protective actions that individuals should take to protect themselves, their family and property. To subscribe, visit http://www.nyalert.gov/. Individuals also can subscribe to the state’s new mobile app, iAlertz, for the latest alerts and notifications. 

About the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services

DHSES and its four offices – Emergency Management, Fire Prevention and Control, Interoperable and Emergency Communications, and Counter Terrorism – provide leadership, coordination and support for efforts to prevent, protect against, prepare for, respond to, and recover from terrorism and other man-made and natural disasters, threats, fires and other emergencies. For more information, visit the DHSES Facebook page, follow @NYSDHSES on Twitter, or visit dhses.ny.gov 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz: 'Governor Cuomo Should Meet with New Progressive Party Leaders'

By Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz
District 32 Bronx County, New York

It Will Be a Mistake for Governor Andrew Cuomo
Not to Meet with the New Progressive Party Leaders

You should know that New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo will be traveling to Puerto Rico next week with a delegation of Hispanic leaders to show support for the economic crisis that Puerto Rico is going through.

As a Puerto Rican who was born in Sector La Cuchilla, Hato Tejas, Bayamon, I am especially proud of and grateful to the Governor for his show of support for my brothers and sisters in Puerto Rico.  

However, I have just learned that Governor Andrew Cuomo is only planning to meet with the Governor and leaders of the Popular Democratic Party (PPD) and not with leaders of the New Progressive Party (PNP).

If this rumor is true, as a Puerto Rican and a follower of the New Progressive Party (PNP) that sympathizes with the Statehood of Puerto Rico, I believe that it will be a great mistake for Governor Cuomo to travel to Puerto Rico and not meet with the leaders of the New Progressive Party and with the Federation of Mayors.

You should know that the two major political parties in Puerto Rico are the New Progressive Party (Partido Nuevo Progresista) (PNP) and the Popular Democratic Party (Partido Popular Democrático) (PPD).  The Mayors elected under the New Progressive banner are called  Federation of Mayors, and the Mayors elected under the Popular Democratic Party banner are called the Association of Mayors. 

You should also know that in Puerto Rico there are currently 47 Mayors affiliated with the Popular Democratic Party (PPD), and 31 Mayors affiliated with the New Progressive Party (PNP).

While Governor Andrew Cuomo is in Puerto Rico, I believe he should not only meet with the leaders of the Popular Democratic Party, but that he should make every effort and room in his schedule to meet with the New Progressive Party leaders.

Ladies and gentlemen, I am confident that those leaders who are traveling with the Governor on this historic trip have already advised the Governor of this very sensitive and important political situation.  

During this trip, New York’s Governor should avoid his good intentions as being perceived as being partisan.

I am State Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz and this is what you should know. 

Patrolman Louis J. Cioci: New York State's Police Officer of the Year

Johnson City Police Department Patrolman Louis J. Cioci is the recipient of the New York State Police Officer of the Year Award. Patrolman Cioci was recognized for his actions in response to an incident in which a gunman killed a fellow Johnson City police officer and then opened fire on a busy street. He is credited with preventing the shooter from harming civilians caught in the midst of the dangerous event.

“Patrolman Cioci exhibited incredible valor and professionalism under extreme circumstances, which ended a very dangerous situation and saved lives,” Governor Cuomo said. “On behalf of all New Yorkers, I thank Patrolman Cioci for his bravery that day and for exemplifying the very best in New York's law enforcement officers.”

Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul presented the Police Officer of the Year award to Patrolman Cioci on Governor Cuomo’s behalf during a ceremony this morning at St. John’s Memorial Center in Johnson City. More than 150 people attended the event, including Patrolman Cioci’s family and department colleagues; the family of Patrolman David W. Smith, who was killed during the incident; state and local elected officials; and law enforcement professionals from throughout Broome County.

“No amount of training or time on the job can prepare an officer for the circumstances Patrolman Cioci faced last year,” Lieutenant Governor Hochul said. “Yet his unwavering courage and poise under intense pressure helped him bring the situation under control without injury – even with many innocent bystanders within close proximity of the gunman. On behalf of Governor Cuomo, we as New Yorkers are proud to celebrate in his heroism and honored to present him with this coveted award.”

Patrolman Smith responded to a call on Harrison Street, located in the middle of the Wilson Memorial Hospital Complex in Johnson City, at 7 a.m. on March 31, 2014, after receiving a report of a male employee from Southern Tier Imaging acting erratically. Seconds later, the man attacked Patrolman David W. Smith and grabbed his service weapon, shooting him in the head and killing him just as Patrolman Cioci arrived.

Patrolman Cioci ordered the gunman to drop the weapon, but the suspect began firing at him instead of complying. Rather than immediately returning fire, he paused, allowing several bystanders near the gunman to take cover. Once the area was clear, Patrolman Cioci fired from a distance of about 30 yards, striking the gunman six times.

Despite being shot in the torso, leg and face, the gunman violently struggled as Patrolman Cioci attempted to arrest him. The injured gunman tackled him, attempting to grab his service weapon. Patrolman Cioci shot the man twice more during the confrontation in an effort to end the attack. With the help of two hospital security guards, he was able to handcuff the still struggling gunman and take him into custody. The man died of his injuries at the hospital a short time later.

Johnson City Police Chief Brent Dodge said, “There is no doubt in my mind or the minds of the men and women who witnessed the event that Patrolman Cioci's heroic actions and unparalleled performance under some of the most stressful conditions imaginable saved the lives of many innocent New Yorkers that morning."

The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services coordinates the work of the Police Officer of the Year Selection Committee, which reviews nominations submitted by New York State law enforcement agencies.

Division of Criminal Justice Services Executive Deputy Commissioner Michael C. Green, who serves as the committee chair, said, “Each year, the Committee reviews nominations that exemplify what it means to serve and protect. Patrolman Cioci responded to a nightmarish scene, witnessed the execution of a fellow officer and friend, and then engaged in a life-and-death struggle with the individual responsible. His composure during these horrific events ultimately protected the lives of many others. On behalf of the entire selection committee, I am honored to recognize him for his heroic efforts.”

Patrolman Cioci has served more than 15 years with the Johnson City Police Department and is a member of the agency’s SWAT team. Previously, he was a deputy with the Chenango County Sheriff’s Office and an officer with the Owego (Tioga County) Police Department. A native of the Broome County town of Maine, he graduated from Maine-Endwell High School and attended Broome County Community College. He and his wife, Kristin, have two daughters. 

The Police Officer of the Year Award was created in 1983 to recognize a single police officer, or team of officers, for an exceptional act of valor symbolizing the service of police in New York State. The award was first presented in 1984.

Patrolman Cioci is the first Johnson City police officer to receive the award. Patrolman Smith had been nominated for the 2002 award: He rescued a sleeping, 4-year-old boy from a burning apartment building in the early morning hours of Jan. 17, 2002. A complete list of past recipients can be found here: http://www.criminaljustice.ny.gov/ops/poya/recipientspast.htm.

Since the award’s inception, 108 officers from 17 agencies across the state have received it. Of those police, 69 have been honored posthumously, including 23 officers from the New York City Police Department and 37 members of the Port Authority of New York/New Jersey Police Department killed during the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001.

Five other officers were nominated for incidents during 2014. These officers will each receive a Certificate of Exceptional Valor from Governor Cuomo:

Officer Daniel Callahan of the University Police at SUNY Canton (St. Lawrence County): On April 22, Officer Callahan observed a young man on a foot bridge with a rope around his neck preparing to attempt suicide. Officer Callahan ran to the man and tried to grab him before he could jump. When this was unsuccessful, Officer Callahan quickly cut the rope with his knife, dropping the man into high, fast moving water. He then swam to the man and pulled him to shore, where he was assisted by other responders.  

Officer Michael Konatstotis of the New York City Police Department: Officer Konatstotis was nominated for five different events: on Feb. 2, he disarmed a knife-wielding individual on a public street; no one was injured. He saved the life of a 15-month-old child by performing CPR on March 9; he intervened as an emotionally disturbed individual attempted to push a fellow officer onto subway tracks, ending the struggle without harm to anyone on July 30; he performed life-saving CPR on a woman in cardiac arrest on Nov. 4; and on Dec. 9, he again performed life-saving CPR, this time on an elderly man with the assistance of EMS personnel.

Officer Zachary McKinnon of the Poughkeepsie Police Department (Dutchess County): During the midnight shift on May 24, Officer Zachary McKinnon and Officer Renee Knapp responded in separate patrol vehicles to a call of an emotionally disturbed person. Upon arrival, the man immediately attacked Officer Knapp with a razor, slashing her repeatedly while she was still in her vehicle. While Officer Knapp attempted to defend herself, Officer McKinnon fired his weapon multiple times at the man, allowing Officer Knapp to flee from the attack. The suspect was killed.

Officer John Scaramuzzino of the Utica Police Department (Oneida County): On Oct. 11, Officer Scaramuzzino was on patrol with a New York State trooper near a local bar when they observed a man shooting a handgun into a gathering of patrons that had just left the establishment, injuring four people. The assailant then ran through a parking lot with Officer Scaramuzzino and another trooper chasing him on foot. Officer Scaramuzzino encountered the assailant as he rounded the corner of a building and exchanged gunfire, incapacitating the man and ending the pursuit. The suspect survived and is serving a 15-year prison sentence.
Trooper Bruce J. Stoffolano of the New York State Police (Troop D): On April 25, Trooper Bruce Stoffolano was dispatched to a residence in West Winfield, Herkimer County, for an armed man threatening to kill people inside. Upon arrival, he was confronted by the man, who was holding a large knife and had an electrical cord wrapped around his neck. Fearing for his own safety as the man closed in on him, Trooper Stoffolano fired one round at the man, immediately ending the threat and allowing him to render first aid to the distraught man.

In addition to the Division of Criminal Justice Services Commissioner, the Police Officer of the Year selection committee is composed of the following members: the Superintendent of the New York State Police, Counsel and Executive Director of the State Sheriffs’ Association, Executive Director of the State Association of Chiefs of Police, President of the Police Conference of New York, President of the New York State Association of Police Benevolent Associations, and President of the Patrolmen’s Benevolent Association of the City of New York.

The New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services (www.criminaljustice.ny.gov) is a multi-function criminal justice support agency with a variety of responsibilities, including collection and analysis of statewide crime data, maintenance of criminal history information and fingerprint files, administrative oversight of the state’s DNA databank in partnership with the New York State Police, administration of federal and state criminal justice funds, support of criminal justice-related agencies across the state, and administration of the state’s Sex Offender Registry. 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo 

'Save Our Youth Series': Luis J. Rodriguez - Gang Life

Published on YouTube on Oct 2, 2014
Produced by TELA SOFA Mentors and Youth

Trailblazers in Black History: Aretha Franklin, 'The Queen of Soul'

Uploaded to YouTube on Jan 9, 2012

Musical prodigy Aretha Franklin grew up in the thick of the civil rights movement. Her version of Otis Redding's song "Respect" is the quintessential example of the soul-singer's strong voice, rare talent and reputation as a strong woman.

Today in History: September 1st

Ways to Keep Your Kids Safe During Back-to-School Season

ABC News' Gio Benitez reports the news on the latest ways to make sure your children stay safe during the new school year.

California High School Football Players Hospitalized With Mysterious Brain Injuries

The two teens lost consciousness and collapsed after a routine game. School officials are now searching for what caused the sudden brain injuries.

Kentucky Clerk Refuses to Issue Same-Sex Marriage License

A judge has already denied Rowan County Clerk Kim Davis' appeal against issuing marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Brokers Protest Rule to Block Most Retirement Account Commissions

NEW YORK - For most people saving for retirement, buying a non-tradeable real estate investment trust that charges fees and commissions of 11 percent or more doesn't sound like a good deal.

But for a growing number of stockbrokers in a corner of the securities industry known as "independent" broker-dealers, such products are a big part of their income and their firms' revenue.

Many brokers are fuming over a proposed U.S. Department of Labor rule that would block them from selling any investment into a retirement account in return for a commission. Instead, the DOL would restrict a broker's compensation to a fee based on a financial adviser's hours or a flat percentage of the value of a retirement account. 

Click here for the full article.

Source: NBC News

150 Hillary Clinton Emails Released Contain Now-Classified Info

First Read: Ben Carson's Outsider Appeal

First Read is a morning briefing from Meet the Press and the NBC Political Unit on the day's most important political stories and why they matter.

Explaining the appeal of Ben Carson: Outsider + Christian

In this summer of Donald Trump, there's another political outsider is now surging in the polls: Ben Carson. In addition to Saturday's Des Moines Register poll that showed him a close second to Donald Trump in Iowa, a Monmouth poll released yesterday finds the former neurosurgeon tied with Trump in the Hawkeye State. What's going on here? Well, part of Carson's appeal can be explained by his outsider status. Remember, the Des Moines Register poll found that 75% of Republican Iowa caucus-goers said they were unsatisfied or mad as hell at their own party in Congress. But what sets Carson apart from the other GOP outsiders -- Trump and Carly Fiorina, who is in third in that Monmouth poll -- is his explicit Christian faith. Here was Carson talking about taxes at last month's Cleveland debate: "What I agree with is that we need a significantly changed taxation system. And the one that I've advocated is based on tithing, because I think God is a pretty fair guy," Carson explained. "And he said, you know, if you give me a tithe, it doesn't matter how much you make. If you've had a bumper crop, you don't owe me triple tithes. And if you've had no crops at all, you don't owe me no tithes. So there must be something inherently fair about that. And that's why I've advocated a proportional tax system." 

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