Good Morning, Brooklyn: Friday, November 4, 2022
SCOTUS REJECTS LATEST CHALLENGE TO STUDENT LOAN PLAN: Applicants to the student debt relief plan may be able to breathe easier, as Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett on Friday rejected a challenge to President Joe Biden’s student debt relief plan, her second time doing so in recent weeks. Six Republican attorneys general have tried to block Biden’s relief program with their lawsuit, and they’ve been temporarily successful; a federal judge allowed a temporary stay on the Education Department’s ability to hand out relief while the group filed an appeal.
The hold notwithstanding, 16 million Americans have been approved for debt cancellation, and the Department of Education is continuing to accept and process applications despite the program being blocked, the White House announced on Thursday; although the relief will not appear on their accounts while the legal challenge plays out.
PROTECTING NEXT TUESDAY’S ELECTION: Assistant United States Attorneys will be present and available at polling place next Tuesday to protect the election process, voters and poll workers, United States Attorneys Breon Peace and Damian Williams announced yesterday. For the Eastern District-New York (Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island, Assistant US Attorney Erik Paulsen has been appointed to serve as the District Election Officer responsible for overseeing the Districts’ handling of Election Day complaints of voting rights, threats of violence to election officials or staff, and election fraud, in consultation with Justice Department Headquarters in Washington.
Federal law protects against such crimes as threatening violence against election officials or staff, intimidating or bribing voters, buying and selling votes, impersonating voters, altering vote tallies, stuffing ballot boxes, and marking ballots for voters against their wishes or without their input. It also contains special protections for the rights of voters,
BUILDINGS COMMISSIONER RESIGNS: Eric Ulrich, commissioner of the New York City Department of Buildings resigned earlier today after only eight months in the role, amid reports that prosecutors were questioning him as part of an investigation into illegal gambling, according to the Associated Press and other news agencies. Ulrich resigned to avoid unnecessary distractions to Mayor Eric Adams’ administration, a spokesman for the mayor said.
A former City Councilmember for the 32nd District representing Queens neighborhoods, the 37-year-old Ulrich joined the Adams administration in January of this year before he was tapped as Buildings Commissioner on May 3.
CITY’S ANNUAL ‘DUSK AND DARKNESS’ PROGRAM BEGINS: Mayor Eric Adams has revived of the city’s annual “Dusk and Darkness” traffic enforcement and education campaign ahead of the end of Daylight Saving Time this coming Sunday, to keep pedestrians, cyclists, and all road users safe during fall and winter evenings. This year, the Dusk and Darkness campaign will focus on promoting safe practices for the carting of commercial waste — handled by private companies — to protect workers and other road users.
New York City Police Department (NYPD) will also expand traffic enforcement of dangerous moving violations during the more dangerous evening and overnight hours.
NEW LAW HAS HELPED AMERICANS REIN IN HEALTHCARE COSTS: The Inflation Reduction Act is beneficial to millions of Americans across party affiliations who need help in being able to afford health care and prescription costs, according to new data that Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney (D-12/northern Brooklyn), chair of the Committee on Oversight and Reform, has presented. This landmark law, which Congressional Democrats passed, and President Joe Biden signed into law, will allow people across the country to obtain more affordable prescription drugs and lower health insurance premiums, by extending critical tax credits set to expire this year.
However, even though some their constituents may have enrolled; top Congressional Republicans have prioritized repealing the law.
RELIGIOUS LEADERS WANT CHRISTIAN NATIONALISM EXAMINED: A group of prominent Christian leaders, including the heads of major denominations, submitted a letter earlier this year to the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol, urging members to examine Christian nationalism, on the grounds that the ideology factored strongly in the insurrection, according to an article published yesterday in the Religion News Service. The letter read, in part, “This investigation into Christian nationalism is important so that history does not repeat itself and so that we understand this threat to our country’s historic commitment to religious liberty and the importance of defeating it.”
The letter, which speaks to increasingly vocal criticism of Christian nationalism among faith leaders, mainline Christian and Black Protestant voices. The Christians Against Christian Nationalism statement alone has accrued more than 30,000 signatures.
ANOTHER LEGAL VICTORY AGAINST TRUMP ORGANIZATION: New York Attorney General Letitia James today won a major victory in her office’s ongoing lawsuit against Donald Trump and the Trump Organization, with the Honorable Arthur Engoron of the New York County (Manhattan) State Supreme Court granting Attorney General James’ motion for a preliminary injunction and finding that the claims in the suit are likely to succeed at trial. Justice Engoron ruled also that Trump Organization cannot transfer any material assets to another entity without court approval, are required to include all supporting and relevant material in any new financial disclosures to banks and insurers, and ordered to appoint an independent monitor to oversee compliance with these measures.
Beyond the continuation of that fraud, the Trump Organization appeared to be taking steps to restructure its business to evade the reaches of OAG’s lawsuit.
NURSING STUDENTS EARN THEIR WHITE COATS: Qi Ting Liu from Brooklyn (Fort Greene/11205) was among 31 students in New York Institute of Technology’s Class of 2024 nursing program who recently received their white coats. The Nursing White Coat Ceremony, signifies the transition from classroom learning to clinical learning and represents a formal welcome into the nursing profession.
The ceremony is held each fall semester of the students’ junior year, before they begin their first clinical experience in health facilities.
NYC MARATHON FEATURES 26.2-MILE ROUTE THAT WILL CLOSE TO TRAFFIC ON SUNDAY: The TCS New York City Marathon, considered the largest in the world, returns this Sunday, November 6, taking runners on a 26.2-mile journey through all five boroughs, and bringing with it myriad street closures. Among the more major closures is that of the Verrazzano‐Narrows Bridge (VNB), which will be closed to all vehicular traffic between 7 a.m. and approximately 4 p.m. on Sunday, with the upper roadway being closed starting the night before, November 5, at 11 p.m. for preparation. Starting on Staten Island, the runners will cross the Verrazzano before wending their way down Fourth Avenue, through Clinton Hill, Williamsburg and Greenpoint, before entering Queens.
The highest elevation that runners will encounter within Brooklyn will be on the Verrazzano Bridge, and the six-mile stretch of Fourth Ave., toward Downtown. Runners will also experience another elevation peak along Lafayette Ave. in Clinton Hill and Fort Greene
GRACE CHURCH MARKS 175TH YEAR WITH EVENSONG: Grace Church Brooklyn Heights, a landmark Episcopal Church, celebrates All Saints Day and the parish’s 175 anniversary this Sunday evening, with a festive Evensong with the Parish Choir. The event is one of several being held during the parish’s 175th year.
During the 1840s, a small group of Episcopalians incorporated a parish, Emmanuel Church, selling the property to the newly-established St. Charles Borromeo Roman Catholic parish when the Emmanuel parishioners outgrew the space. The Episcopal group re-incorporated as Grace Church, whose first rector, the Rev. Dr. Francis Vinton, Henry Evelyn Pierrepont secured land on Grace Church and commissioned famed architect Richard Upjohn to design their new building.
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