Good Morning, Brooklyn: Wednesday, July 14, 2021
AG JAMES WINS RESTITUTION FOR TEACHERS: New York Attorney General Letitia James announced yesterday that TIAA-CREF Individual & Institutional Services, Inc., a subsidiary of the Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America (TIAA), has agreed to pay $97 million in restitution to tens of thousands of customers who were fraudulently misled into moving their retirement investments out of employer-sponsored retirement plans. Over the course of six years, TIAA advisors were accused of pressuring tens of thousands of customers to move their investments to significantly more expensive individually-managed accounts, a scheme that generated hundreds of millions of dollars in fees for TIAA.
The restitution agreements, which resolve parallel investigations by the Office of the Attorney General and the Securities and Exchange Commission, stipulate that TIAA will provide significant relief to its customers, and will undertake significant internal reforms.
FÊTE NATIONALE ICI: Bastille Day, celebrated on July 14 each year, comes to Industry City this weekend. Carreau Club is taking over the entire Courtyard at Industry City for the inaugural “La Brooklynaise” open pétanque tournament and fête on Sunday afternoon, July 18th. Pétanque is similar to its Italian counter- part, bocce; the object is to throw one’s ball underhand toward a target ball, with the closest ball winning.
French cuisine also reigns, with specialty dishes and treats in- cluding an Oyster Cart, Soca Bar, and the classic Jambon Beurre from D’Artagnan and M. Wells, alongside a Pastis Patio popup by Ricard. In addition, there will be a DJ’s playing the latest in French music all afternoon.
RUGBY LIBRARY IS BACK: City Councilmember Farah Louis’ office celebrated Monday’s reopening of the remodeled Rugby Library on Utica Avenue in East Flatbush. The bustling branch was closed in March 2017 for a $10.2 million renovation that included 22,000 books and items, new shelving, seating and service areas, and an entire area for kids and teens. Councilmember Louis, who represents this District 45 area, was instrumental in finding and keeping up the fight for funds for this renovation originally planned for 2005.
The venerable building dates to 1957 and is two blocks from the childhood home of Jackie Robinson.
GLORIA GAYNOR HEADLINES SUMMERSTAGE: Legendary Gloria Gaynor comes to the Coney Island Amphitheater stage (3052 W 21st St.) for a special 7 p.m. performance this Saturday, July 17th, with doors opening at 5 p.m. The concert is part of Capital One City Parks Foundation SummerStage. Best known for her 1978 chart-topping, GRAMMY®-winning, platinum disco single “I Will Survive,” Gaynor has shifted into making faith-based songs later in life, balancing R&B and electronic dance music with gospel sensibilities.
Gloria released her latest, TESTIMONY, in 2019 which she co- wrote and recorded in Nashville, TN with a multi-GRAMMY® Award winning team of fellow songwriters, producers, musicians, and special guest vocalists. She won Best Roots Gospel GRAMMY® at the 2020 Award Ceremony.
KEEPING KIDS SAFE IN CARS: New York Attorney General Letitia James on Tuesday co-led a coalition of 18 attorneys general in calling on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to take stronger measures to protect children while traveling in car seats. The coalition asks NHTSA to implement side-impact testing standards for child car seats as quickly as possible, after 20 years of delay that has endangered children’s safety, and to require that all child car seat labels include guidance that says every child should remain in his or her current car seat until exceeding its height or weight maximum. While all childcare safety experts, as well as NHTSA itself, endorse this language, NHTSA does not currently require it to appear on seat labels.
Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death for children aged 1 to 13. Almost 5,000 children under 15 have died in car crashes from 2015 to 2019, which equates to about 19 children each week over that time period.
MILLENNIAL CREDITED WITH MIRACLE: The Roman Catholic Diocese Of Brooklyn tomorrow will receive the relic of the first Millennial (youth born after 2000) to be considered for saint- hood in the Roman Catholic Church. The youth, Carlo Acutis, who lost his battle with Acute Myeloid Leukemia at age 15 in 2006 in Italy, had attended Mass daily from the age of seven and designed a website listing “The Miracles of the Eucharist,” documenting every miracle worldwide that is associated with Holy Communion.
Since Carlo’s death, a miracle was attributed to him after a boy with a malformed pancreas was healed after the child came in contact with one of his shirts. Acutis could become a saint if a second verified miracle is attributed to him and is recognized by the Pope.
BLENDING OF CULTURES: Sacred Hearts & St. Stephen Roman Catholic Church (on Summit Street between Hicks and Henry streets) is in the heart of Brooklyn’s Italian Carroll Gardens neighborhood. But this coming Sunday, the parish will be celebrating Asian culture and the ordination to the diaconate of Vincent Vu during the 10 a.m. Mass. Following Mass will be a special presentation and performance by award-winning pianist Donna Weng Friedman.
A soloist, chamber musician, teacher, curator and app developer, Donna Wang Friedman has released her new EP Heritage and Harmony: Silver Linings, featuring exclusively AAPI/BIPOC artists, aims to promote understanding and tolerance and combat racism, with all proceeds do- nated to supporting the Asian American-Pacific Islander community. This season, she is also collaborating with Ariel Rivka Dance to share her of heritage and harmony through dance and music.
URGES PASSAGE OF SENATE’S PRAY SAFE ACT: The Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America (Orthodox Union) has urged the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee to approve the Pray Safe Act (S.2123) at a committee markup session Wednesday. The bipartisan legislation that Sens. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) crafted and introduced in June, would establish a federal clearinghouse on safety and security to govern best practices for faith-based organizations. The clearinghouse would provide at-risk houses of worship and other faith-based organizations with the most up-to-date safety and security recommendations, as well as information on federal resources and relevant grant programs.
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