Saturday, September 3, 2016

NY Braces for Hermine: Gov Directs Additional Pre-Deployment of Essential Assets to New York City and Long Island


Governor Andrew Cuomo today urged New Yorkers to prepare for potentially hazardous weather due to Tropical Storm Hermine that is moving up the East Coast, and will impact Southern Westchester, New York City and Long Island – areas which are now both under a Tropical Storm Warning – beginning Sunday through Tuesday. The storm is expected to last longer than initially anticipated across the downstate region. The Governor is activating the State Emergency Operations Center beginning Sunday at noon, and State Emergency Personnel are actively monitoring the storm as it approaches. Stockpile resources in the downstate region – including sandbags, high-axle vehicles, pumps and generators – are prepared for deployment, and the National Guard is on alert throughout the region.

"As Hermine approaches, we are taking every action necessary to protect New Yorkers and our most vulnerable infrastructure across downstate,” Governor Cuomo said. "We are monitoring the storm's progression around the clock and, while the latest forecasts spare our state from the brunt of the storm, I have directed emergency response officials to pre-deploy high axle vehicles and swift water rescue teams in the event of localized flooding. I urge residents and visitors to check local weather reports before traveling tomorrow and Monday and to stay informed by using NY Alert‎."

Tropical Storm Hermine is moving east/northeast and is expected to slow down Sunday and into Monday and stall over Long Island through Wednesday. All coastal areas in New York are in a Storm Surge Watch and it is expected to escalate into a Storm Surge Warning as the storm nears New York State. The storm will bring heavy rains, dangerous rip currents, high waves, beach erosion and coastal flooding, especially in the back bays of Long Island. Wind gusts of 60 mph are predicted for the Long Island area beginning Sunday morning. While the center of the storm is expected to remain south and eventually east of Long Island, impacts will occur well away from its center.

Governor Directs Additional Pre-Deployment of Essential Assets to Region

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority has deployed additional personnel to assist with storm preparations throughout the region. Most weekend work has been canceled and their Incident Command Center will be activated as of 8 p.m. this evening. Crews are out inspecting pumps and drains throughout the system and pump trains are also being staged and readied for deployment. Trains are also being moved out of the Coney Island and 207 St Yards to secure areas of the system ahead of rainfall. Additionally, the NYC Subway system, the Long Island Railroad, New York City Buses and Bridges and Tunnels are preparing for any storm surge and are closely monitoring wind conditions that could impact any part of the system.

The Port Authority of NY and NJ has positioned and is prepared to deploy nearly four miles of flood barriers to protect critical transportation facilities, in addition to more than 170 generators and pumps to ensure continuity of service. The Port Authority will have a full complement of staff at all of its transportation facilities to ensure that the hundreds of thousands of customers are safely accommodated, and will continuously coordinate with its federal, state and local partners throughout the storm.

The Public Service Commission is in constant communications with all utility companies and starting communication with partner utility companies in the case that requirements exceed capability. PSEG has also secured 500 additional foreign linemen and 250 additional tree personnel. Utilities in the region are ready to respond in the event of wide spread power outages.

The New York State Office of Parks, Recreation & Historic Preservation has closed Long Island ocean beaches beginning tomorrow to swimming until further notice, and will continue to monitor surf conditions. Nassau County has also requested the use of one sandbagger and one pallet of sandbags to prevent flooding. While all state parks will remain open, water areas will be closed to the public.

The Department of Transportation has more than 1000 operators and supervisors positioned in the Hudson Valley and on Long Island ready to respond with 379 large dump trucks, 86 loaders, 29 chippers, 9 bucket trucks, 9 excavators, 2 graders, 6 vacuum trucks with sewer jets, 14 water pumps, and 14 traffic signal trucks.

The New York State Thruway Authority has over 150 supervisors and staff in the region. Assets ready to respond include 47 large dump trucks, 67 medium dump trucks, two low boy trailers, one tilt bed trailer, two flatbed trailers, four backhoes, 30 portable variable message systems, three chippers, eleven front end loaders, 27 chain saws, 25 generators, 13 pumps, and seven aerial trucks.

The Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has prepositioned three High Axle Vehicles to the Brentwood stockpile location. Each has been equipped with personal flotation devices, hand lights, hand tools (forcible entry and shovels), blankets and an inflatable boat. Additionally, two, three-person DHSES OFPC Swift Water Rescue Teams are pre-deployed to the Brentwood stockpile along with four logistics and planning staff and the STR communications team, ready to respond if necessary.

The National Guard is on alert and prepared to immediately respond as necessary to any coastal storm which impacts New York City, Long Island, and the lower Hudson Valley. The National Guard has Initial Response Forces throughout the region – personnel and equipment include 180 Soldiers and Airmen and 45 vehicles that include high-axle trucks and high mobility multi-purpose vehicles. The National Guard also has two Engineer Initial Response Forces with front end loaders, dump trucks and smaller Bob Cats available for use if necessary.

The State Police has swift water teams prepped and on standby and is fully staffed in the region.

The Department of Environmental Conservation has 64 Department of Environmental Conservation police available in the downstate area, 23 boats, 14 ATVs, and 64 four wheel drive patrol vehicles. Governor Activating State Emergency Operations Center
At the direction of Governor Cuomo, the New York State Emergency Operations Center will be activated on Sunday at noon. The following agencies will be represented:
    · Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services
    · New York State Police
    · Division of Military and Naval Affairs
    · Metropolitan Transportation Authority
    · Port Authority of NY and NJ
    · Office of Emergency Management
    · Office of Fire Prevention and Control
    · Office of Interoperable Emergency Communications
    · Department of Health
    · Department of Transportation
    · New York State Thruway Authority
    · Department of Environmental Conservation
    · Public Service Commission
    · Information Technology Services
    · American Red Cross
Additionally, personnel from State Office of Emergency Management, State Police, Department of Transportation, Military and Naval Affairs, and MTA are staffing the Nassau and Suffolk County Emergency Operations Centers in advance of the storm. 

Stockpile Resources Prepared for Deployment 
In addition to the assets pre-deployed ahead of the storm, New York State stockpiles in Brentwood and John F. Kennedy International Airport contain additional resources available for use:
    · 29 generators
    · 58 light towers
    · 252,000 bottles of water
    · 97,104 ready-to-eat meals
    · 19,200 Kosher ready-to-eat meals
    · 155 pumps that range from 2”, 3”, 4” and 6”
    · Two sandbaggers; 200,000 sandbags
Through NY Responds, the State’s incident management system, Nassau County Emergency Management has requested the use of one of the two sand baggers and one pallet of sandbags for use in some of their typical coast line inundation areas. 

Additional resources from stockpiles and agencies across the state are available for transport to the affected region if necessary. 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Weekly Address: Building Upon the Legacy of Labor Day


West Wing Week: 9/02/16


Here's Hillary Clinton's Back-to-School To-Do List

Labor Day may no longer be the kickoff of to presidential campaigns, but it now marks their homestretch: Americans come back from vacations, spend more time watching TV (including political ads, news and debates), and begin to focus on the election.

Heading into the holiday, Hillary Clinton enjoys some obvious advantages over Donald Trump that most presidential candidates would kill for: She's ahead in the polls, has raised more money, has run more ads, built the bigger ground game, enlisted more bold-named allies, peeled off more defections from the opposing party and inherited a better electoral college outlook.

It's easy to see why Democrats are feeling confident, with David Plouffe predicting to Politico Friday that Clinton is already sitting on 347 electoral votes — a landslide over the 270 needed to win.

"I think the campaign is fundamentally over," said veteran Democratic strategist Bob Shrum. "It formed in August, post-convention. Trump always had a very steep mountain to climb. And instead of climbing the mountain, he keeps falling off it." 

Click here for the full article. 

Trump Attends Detroit Church with Protests Outside


Strong Oklahoma Earthquake Felt From Nebraska to Texas

PAWNEE, Okla. — One of the largest earthquakes in Oklahoma rattled the Midwest on Saturday from Nebraska to North Texas, and likely will turn new attention to the practice of disposing oil and gas field wastewater deep underground.

The United States Geological Survey said a 5.6 magnitude earthquake happened at 7:02 a.m. CT (8:02 a.m. ET) Saturday in north-central Oklahoma, a key energy-producing region. That matches a November 2011 quake in the same region. No major damage was immediately reported. 

Click here for the full article.

Source: NBC News

90 Murders in Chicago in August, Deadliest Month in Last 20 Years, CPD Says


Chicago crime numbers released early Thursday morning confirm August 2016 was the deadliest month the city has seen in two decades. (WLS)



Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson joined ABC7 News This Morning to discuss what the department plans to do to stop the violence and make the city safer. 

Source: ABC 7 News (via The Empire Report)

Dr. Boyce Watkins: 'I Talked About Donald Trump on CNN Today. Here's What Happened'


This video was published on YouTube on September 2, 2016. 

Source: Boyce Watkins (via Your Black World News)

Emails Raise New Questions About Clinton Foundation Ties to State Dept.


WASHINGTON — A top aide to Hillary Clinton at the State Department agreed to try to obtain a special diplomatic passport for an adviser to former President Bill Clinton in 2009, according to emails released Thursday, raising new questions about whether people tied to the Clinton Foundation received special access at the department.

The request by the adviser, Douglas J. Band, who started one arm of the Clintons’ charitable foundation, was unusual, and the State Department never issued the passport. Only department employees and others with diplomatic status are eligible for the special passports, which help envoys facilitate travel, officials said.

Mrs. Clinton’s presidential campaign said that there was nothing untoward about the request and that it related to an emergency trip that Mr. Clinton took to North Korea in 2009 to negotiate the release of two American journalists. Mrs. Clinton has long denied that donors had any special influence at the State Department. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: The New York Times

NYC Beaches Will Close For Hermine and The "Most Intense" Riptides In Decade


All New York City beaches will be closed to swimming starting Sunday, as tropical storm Hermine is expected to stall offshore and generate the most dangerous riptides New York City has seen in a decade or more, Mayor de Blasio announced at a press conference on Friday. The city is also preparing for coastal flooding and high winds, and residual downed trees and power lines.

"The number one concern is riptides right now," de Blasio said. "This is a very unusual situation. We could see some of the most intense riptides in literally ten or fifteen years. The phrase used by the National Weather Service is 'extremely dangerous' riptides… once the riptide grabs you, you can no get out in many, many cases."

"Do not even put your foot in the water on Sunday, and most likely several days after," he added. Beaches will be open to foot traffic, but beach goers can expect signage and warning flags at the water's edge, as well as Parks enforcement telling people in a "very direct and powerful way" not to go in. 

Click here for the full article.

Source: Gothamist

New York Farm Bureau: Drought Worst in Generations


New York farmers are experiencing the worst drought conditions in generations, and while the industry may suffer a setback, it will persevere.

That's from Dean Norton, the President of the New York Farm Bureau, a lobbying group for agribusiness.

Norton says one immediate concern is for dairy farmers.

He says the dairy industry is going through a price downturn, and as they receive lower prices for their products, dairy farmers are also facing the prospect of a shortage of feed this fall.

Click here for the full article. 

Source: WXXI News

Friday, September 2, 2016

Hermine: Here’s What to Expect from the Storm as it Moves North


Hermine, which made landfall in Florida as a hurricane, is expected to move inland until it shifts to run parallel along the East Coast. TODAY’s Al Roker says storm surge could be as high as nine feet off the coast of Florida, while there’s risk of tornadoes from northern Florida to the Carolinas. 

Click here for video.

Source: NBC News/TODAY

NBA Star Dwyane Wade Speaks Out After Cousin's Death by Crossfire

 

Wade speaks exclusively with George Stephanopoulos about the murder of his cousin Nykea Aldridge who was gunned down in the streets of Chicago. 

Click here for video.

Source: ABC News

Senator Bill Cassidy on Louisiana Flooding


Senator Cassidy (R-LA) talked by remote video from Baton Rouge about flooding in Louisiana, including federal and state response efforts, and his past record on disaster relief funding. He also talked about the 2016 presidential campaign and the fall congressional agenda. 

Click here for video. 

Source: C-SPAN

Christian Science Monitor Breakfast with AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka


Trumka spoke to reporters at a Christian Science Monitor breakfast on the labor movement agenda in the 2016 election. He harshly criticized Donald Trump, calling him a fraud and saying he was increasingly losing support among union members. In addition, Mr. Trumka discussed the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) saying he was confident the agreement would not pass in Congress. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Hermine Brings Rain, Heavy Winds to South Carolina


President Islom Karimov of Uzbekistan Dies

 
Statement from President Obama

At this challenging time of President Islom Karimov’s passing, the United States reaffirms its support for the people of Uzbekistan.  This week, I congratulated President Karimov and the people of Uzbekistan on their country’s 25 years of independence.  As Uzbekistan begins a new chapter in its history, the United States remains committed to partnership with Uzbekistan, to its sovereignty, security, and to a future based on the rights of all its citizens.  

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary 

Note: Information on President Karimov's legacy and life is available here

National Security Council Notes: The Explosion in Davao City, Philippines


Statement by National Security Council Spokesperson Ned Price

 The United States offers deep condolences to the families and other loved ones of the victims of the explosion in the Philippines’ Davao City, and our thoughts and prayers are with the injured. We understand that local authorities continue to investigate the cause of the explosion in the night market, and the United States stands ready to provide assistance to the investigation. The President will have an opportunity to offer his personal condolences to President Duterte next week, when the two leaders plan to meet on the sidelines of the ASEAN Summit in Laos. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

Note: Information on the explosion is available here

President Obama Delivers a Statement to the Press


First Lady Michelle Obama to Honor 2016 National Student Poets


On September 8, at 1 p.m., First Lady Michelle Obama will welcome the fifth annual class of the National Student Poets Program to the White House. The Kennedy Center's Artistic Director for Hip-Hop Culture, Q-Tip, will be featured at this year's poetry reading.

For the past five years, Mrs. Obama has joined the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities (PCAH) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to honor the top student poets in the country. Since its inception in 2011, the National Student Poets Program has showcased the essential role of writing and the arts in academic and personal success for audiences across the country. In addition, the First Lady will recognize the first class of the Spoken Word Ambassador Program, which was established to recognize students who demonstrate an exceptional ability to tell stories, to critically and creatively analyze their worlds, and to present that information in a way that is accessible to large and diverse audiences.

Representing five different regions of the nation, the 2016 National Student Poets are: Stella Binion, Chicago, IL (Midwest Region), Maya Eashwaran, Alpharetta, GA (Southeast Region), Gopal Rman, Dallas, TX (Southwest Region), Joey Reisberg, Towson, MD (Northeast Region), and Maya Salameh, San Diego, CA (West Region). 

To learn more about the National Student Poets Program, visit www.artandwriting.org/nspp.  

Source: The White House, Office of the First Lady   

Vice President Joe Biden Responds to Heckler at Ohio Campaign Rally

 

Reacting to an audience member who shouted, "My friends died," Vice President Joe Biden responds, "So did my son." He invites the man to speak to him privately after the campaign rally.

User-Created Clip
by Caitlin Hillyard
September 2, 2016 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Cuomo Statement on Latest Arrest in Carey Gabay Murder Case

 

“Law enforcement officials have arrested a fifth person in connection with the murder of Carey Gabay. Carey exemplified the very best in all of us – he was a person of principle and integrity, a devoted public servant who worked every day to better the lives of others. As we approach the one year anniversary of Carey's tragic death, we all mourn his loss and honor his memory. This arrest is another step forward in the pursuit of justice for Carey’s family and loved ones. I thank law enforcement for their relentless commitment to ensuring those responsible for Carey’s death are held fully accountable.”  

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Note: Additional information on the arrest is available here.

A Discussion on Teacher Pay


Economic Policy Institute President Lawrence Mishel discusses his organization’s new report which finds that weekly teacher pay is 17 percent lower than that of comparable workers. He also talks about the implications for teachers and their students. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Statement on the Employment Situation in August


WASHINGTON, DC – Jason Furman, Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, issued the following statement today on the employment situation in August.
 
Summary: The economy added 151,000 jobs in August, as the unemployment rate and labor force participation both held steady.

The economy added 151,000 jobs in August following robust job growth in both June and July as the unemployment rate held steady at 4.9 percent. U.S. businesses have now added 15.1 million jobs since early 2010, and the longest streak of total job growth on record continued in August. So far in 2016, job growth has averaged a solid 182,000 jobs a month, well above the pace of about 80,000 jobs a month needed to maintain a low and stable unemployment rate, and hourly earnings for private-sector workers have increased at an annual rate of 2.8 percent, much faster than the pace of inflation. Nevertheless, more work remains to sustain faster wage growth and to ensure that the benefits of the recovery are broadly shared, including investing in infrastructure, implementing the high-standards Trans-Pacific Partnership, and raising the minimum wage. 

The complete statement is available here.

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

Voices from the Civil Rights Movement: Paul Robeson


'Flashback Friday': The Night James Brown Saved Boston


This video was uploaded to YouTube on November 24, 2008. The entire series is available on the site. 

Trailblazers in Black History: The Mills Brothers


The Mills Brothers, sometimes billed as The Four Mills Brothers, and originally known as The Four Kings of Harmony, were an African-American jazz and pop group vocal quartet of the 20th century who made more than 2,000 recordings that combined sold more than 50 million copies, and garnered at least three dozen gold records. The Mills Brothers were inducted into The Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 1998.

In 1934, The Mills Brothers became the first African-Americans to give a command performance before British royalty. They performed at the Regal Theatre for a special audience: King George V, Queen Mary, and their mother. 

Donald Trump's Detroit Church 'Script' Leaks; Biden Stumps for Hillary Clinton


FDA Orders Antibacterials Removed From Consumer Soaps

Say goodbye to those "antibacterial" soaps. The Food and Drug Administration says they do little or nothing to make soap work any better and said the industry has failed to prove they're safe.

Companies will have a year to take the ingredients out of the products, the FDA said. They include triclosan and triclocarban. Soap manufacturers will have an extra year to negotiate over other, less commonly used ingredients such as benzalkonium chloride. 

Click here for the full article. 

Samsung Pulls 2.5M Galaxy Note 7s Over Battery Fires

 

Samsung has recalled 2.5 million Galaxy Note 7 smartphones amid reports some of their batteries exploded while being charged. Coming less than one week before Apple releases its latest iPhone, the record recall is a strike against the South Korean tech company, which saw billions of dollars removed from its share value this week. Shares rose after the recall was announced Friday morning.

In a statement released Friday, the tech giant said it would prepare replacement devices for those already sold. Retailing in the U.S. at around $850 per phone, the recall is a huge setback for the world's largest smartphone maker. It was not immediately clear when new sales of the devices would begin.

Samsung Electronics launched the Note 7 on August 19 in markets including the U.S. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: NBC News

West Calumet Housing Complex Faces Wrecking Ball Due to High Lead Levels

Residents of an Indiana housing complex are scrambling to find new homes after dangerously high levels of lead were found in the soil and the mayor proposed demolishing the 44-year-old development.

But as the 1,100 tenants of the condemned West Calumet Housing Complex were looking for an exit, an attorney representing some of the soon-to-be-displaced families said federal, state and city officials in East Chicago, Indiana, have known for years that residents were living atop a ticking environmental time bomb.

"The tragedy is that this could have all been avoided," attorney Barry Rooth told NBC News. He said 85 of the children he represents have been diagnosed with unsafe lead levels. "We've had at least seven years of lead exposure to a whole generation of children." 

Click here for the full article. 

Colin Kaepernick Pledges $1 Million to Charity as Anthem Protest Spreads

 
San Francisco 49ers star Colin Kaepernick is putting his money where his mouth is — pledging to donate $1 million to community organizations Thursday.

Kaepernick's anthem protest spread as the quarterback was joined by teammate Eric Reid in taking a knee before their preseason game against the Chargers. Seahawks cornerback Jeremy Lane also sat during the national anthem before his team's preseason game against the Raiders Thursday. 

Click here for the full article.

Source: NBC News

As Zika Spread, Paralyzing Guillain-Barré Syndrome Skyrocketed

There's more evidence that Zika virus infection can cause a paralyzing side effect called Guillain-Barré syndrome.

Instances of Guillain-Barré skyrocketed in countries hit by Zika virus epidemics — by as much as 877 percent in Venezuela, health officials and researchers from Latin America reported. At the very least, rates doubled, the officials said in a letter to the New England Journal of Medicine.

"During the weeks of Zika virus transmission, there were significant increases in the incidence of the Guillain-Barré syndrome, as compared with the pre-Zika virus baseline incidence, in (Brazil's) Bahia State (an increase of 172 percent), Colombia (211 percent), the Dominican Republic (150 percent), El Salvador (100 percent), Honduras (144 percent), Suriname (400 percent), and Venezuela (877 percent)," they wrote. "When the incidence of Zika virus disease increased, so did the incidence of the Guillain-Barré syndrome." 

Click here for the full article.

Moderators Chosen, Presidential Debates Set

 
The three presidential debates and one vice presidential debate are now set as the Commission on Presidential Debates have announced the hosts and moderators, Friday Morning.

Per the press release:
 
First presidential debate:
Lester Holt, Anchor, NBC Nightly News
Monday, September 26, Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY
 
This debate will have six sections of 15 minutes each on topics chosen by the moderators.
 
Vice presidential debate:
Elaine Quijano, Anchor, CBSN and Correspondent, CBS News
Tuesday, October 4, Longwood University, Farmville, VA
 
This debate will consist of nine sections of ten minutes ueach. 

Click here to review the full schedule. 

Source: NBC News

Hurricane Hermine Slams into Florida; Flooding, Power Outages Reported


NY State Emergency Operations Center to Be Activated for Tropical Storm Hermine

 
Governor Cuomo today announced the New York State Emergency Operations center will be activated on Sunday at noon, and has directed State officials from responding agencies to immediately be on alert in advance of Tropical Storm Hermine. State Emergency Personnel are actively monitoring the storm as it approaches, and stockpile resources in the downstate region – including sandbags, high-axel vehicles, pumps and generators – are prepared for deployment.

As Tropical Storm Hermine continues up the east coast, the state will be taking all necessary precautions to support our local partners and keep our residents safe,” said Governor Cuomo. “While there is still uncertainty as to how far west the storm will track as it approaches New York State, we stand ready and prepared to respond with emergency equipment, supplies and personnel. I strongly urge all New Yorkers – especially those in the path of the storm – to stay updated by checking local weather reports and using NY Alert‎ to follow the storm's progress throughout the weekend."

Tropical Storm Hermine, which hit landfall in Florida last night, is forecasted to bring heavy rains, dangerous rip currents, high waves and coastal flooding to Long Island and New York City as early as Sunday evening. This morning, Tropical Storm Hermine was located over southwestern Georgia with sustained winds at 70 mph. While the center of the storm is expected to remain south of Long Island, impacts will occur well away from its center.

State Officials and National Guard Closely Monitoring Storm

At the direction of Governor Cuomo, the New York State Emergency Operations Center will be activated on Sunday at noon. Representatives from the Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Services, Office of Emergency Management, Office of Fire Prevention and Control, Department of Health, Department of Transportation, Department of Environmental Conservation, New York State Thruway, State Police, Public Service Commission and the Division of Military and Naval Affairs have been directed to report to the Emergency Operations Center for this activation.

The National Guard is on alert and prepared to immediately respond as necessary to any coastal storm which impacts New York City, Long Island, and the lower Hudson Valley. The National Guard has Initial Response Forces throughout the region – personnel and equipment include 100 Soldiers and Airmen and 45 vehicles that include high-axel trucks and high mobility multi-purpose vehicles. The National Guard also has two Engineer Initial Response Forces with front end loaders, dump trucks and smaller Bob Cats available for use if necessary.

Stockpile Resources Prepared for Deployment

New York State stockpiles in Brentwood and John F. Kennedy International Airport that are immediately available for deployment include: 29 generators, 58 light towers, 252,000 bottles of water, 97,104 ready-to-eat meals, 19,200 Kosher ready-to-eat meals, 155 pumps that range from 2”, 3”, 4” and 6”, two sandbaggers; and 200,000 sandbags. 

The Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Services has five High Axle Vehicles ready to respond. Each has been equipped with personal flotation devices, hand lights, hand tools (forcible entry and shovels), blankets and an inflatable boat. Additionally, DHSES OFPC Swift Water Rescue Teams are on stand-by. 

Additional resources from stockpiles across the state are available for transport to the affected region if necessary. 

Source: Press Office, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo

Thursday, September 1, 2016

'Brutal Night': Hurricane Hermine Looms Just Off Florida Coast

Parts of the Florida Gulf coast were under hurricane warnings as Hurricane Hermine rotated toward the state packing 80-mph winds Thursday night.

Gov. Rick Scott urged areas along a long stretch of the coast centered on the so-called Big Bend — the elbow where the state's peninsula meets the Panhandle — to lay in food and water and make sure they had shelter ahead of the "life-threatening" hurricane — the first for the state since Wilma 11 years ago.

"You can rebuild a home. You can rebuild property," Scott said. "You cannot rebuild a life."

Hermine was "just looming off the coast" Thursday night, said Ari Sarsalari, a meteorologist for The Weather Channel. "The whole Big Bend is in for a brutal night."

The National Weather Service said Hermine, which was centered about 40 miles southeast of Apalachicola at 9 p.m. ET, was expected to make landfall late Thursday or early Friday somewhere between Apalachicola and Horseshoe Beach.

President Obama Delivers Remarks at the 2016 Pacific Islands Conference of Leaders


National Security Council Notes: The Removal of Chemical Weapons Precursors from Libya


The following statement was issued today by National Security Council Spokesperson Ned Price. 

Today we mark an important achievement in our ongoing efforts to halt the spread of weapons of mass destruction - the final steps of an international effort to remove from Libya and destroy nearly 500 metric tons of chemical weapons precursors.  The dual-use industrial chemicals removed from Libya in recent days are the remains of the chemical weapons stockpile accumulated by Muammar Qaddafi's regime.

The removal was completed at the request of the Libyan Government of National Accord, both to make responsible progress toward fulfilling Libya's obligations under the Chemical Weapons Convention and to ensure that the chemicals did not fall into the hands of ISIL or other terrorists.  The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) and the international community responded immediately to Libya's request for assistance, recognizing the need to ensure these hazardous chemicals are destroyed in an environmentally safe, secure, and verifiable manner, and do not threaten the well-being of Libya's population.

We thank the OPCW and the members of the international community for uniting to take swift action to help eliminate the vestiges of Libya's chemical weapons stockpile.  We appreciate the important role of Denmark, which has provided maritime assets to safely remove the chemicals from Libya, as well as the significant support provided by Germany, the United Kingdom, Canada, and Finland.  The United States helped organize and support this group - the same coalition that enabled the removal of Syria's declared chemical weapons in 2013 and 2014.  These efforts reflect our shared commitment to the OPCW's vision of ridding the world of chemical weapons and preventing their use by state and non-state actors alike. 

Source: The White House, Office of the Press Secretary

President Obama Remarks on Lake Tahoe Restoration

 
President Obama delivered keynote remarks at the 20th Lake Tahoe Summit, an annual gathering of federal, state, and local officials in the Lake Tahoe basin of California and Nevada to discuss ways to continue cleaning up the once environmentally damaged lake.

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Vice President Biden Campaigns for Hillary Clinton in Warren, Ohio

 

Vice President Joe Biden campaigned for Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton at an event in Warren, Ohio, at the Local 1714 United Auto Workers Union Hall. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

Donald Trump American Legion Speech

 
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump addressed the American Legion National Convention in Cincinnati. He outlined his proposals to help veterans, including improving their access to health care. He also spoke about his meeting with Mexican President Nieto, saying the U.S. and Mexico can work together to stop illegal border crossings, end drug cartels, and keep jobs within the hemisphere. 

Click here for video.

Source: C-SPAN

YouTube Stars Are Blowing Up Over Not Getting Paid (Update)

  Philip DeFranco

By Bryan Menegus

For the past year YouTubers have been trying to navigate a deluge of false copyright claims and a changing algorithm that rewards needlessly-long videos. Now, allegedly, the platform is starting to withhold paychecks.

For professional or semi-professional YouTubers, monetization through advertising is almost always their main source of revenue. Exurb1a, MrRepzion, Philip DeFranco—who alone has 4.5 million subscribers and has been on the platform for over a decade—and others have recently made videos claiming YouTube has pulled ads from their videos, citing a new* policy. 

Click here for the full article. 

Source: Gizmodo