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    By ADAM BEAM | The Associated Press SACRAMENTO – Gov. Gavin Newsom says California will pay off all the past-due rent that accumulated in the nation’s most populated state because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, a promise to make landlords whole while giving renters a clean slate. Left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo. Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30. California had passed its own protections that applied to more people. Newsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately to decide what to do, part of the negotiations over the state’s roughly $260 billion operating budget. An extension of the eviction ban seems likely to give California more time to spend all the money to cover unpaid rent. But landlords and tenants’ rights groups are arguing over how long that extension should last. “The expectation for people to be up and at ’em and ready to pay rent on July...
    California will pay off all the past-due rent accumulated by residents during the coronavirus pandemic, says Gov. Gavin Newsom. The move would fulfill a promise to help landlords break even – while giving renters a clean slate, according to reports this week.  "California is planning rent forgiveness on a scale never seen before in the United States." Newsom wrote on Twitter Monday night, attributing the post to a report by the New York Times.    CALIFORNIA UNIVERSITY HOLDING ADDITIONAL GRADUATE CEREMONIES FOR STUDENTS BASED ON RACE, SEXUAL ORIENTATION California Gov. Gavin Newsom talks during a news conference at Universal Studios in Universal City, Calif. Newsom and state legislative leaders are negotiating about whether to extend the state's ban on evictions for unpaid rent on June 15, 2021.  (AP Photo/Ringo H.W. Chiu, File) The state has about $5.2 billion from federal aid packages approved by Congress to pay off people’s rent, which should be enough to cover, said Jason Elliott, senior counselor to Newsom on housing and homelessness. What's unclear is whether California will continue to ban evictions...
    California Governor Gavin Newsom has already said the state will pay off all the past-due rent accumulated by struggling residents because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, a promise to make landlords whole, while giving renters a clean slate. Left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for its residents' unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo. Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30, but California has passed its own protections that applied to more people than had been approved by Congress. Newsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately this week to decide what to do about evictions. Residents said they're hoping for an extension.  "The expectation for people to be up and at 'em and ready to pay rent on July 1 is wholeheartedly unfair," said Kelli Lloyd, a 43-year-old single mother who hasn't worked consistently since March 2020. Millions face eviction when federal moratoriu... 02:38 Lloyd is supposed to pay $1,924 a month for her two-bedroom...
    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Gavin Newsom says California will pay off all the past-due rent that accumulated in the nation’s most populated state because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, a promise to make landlords whole while giving renters a clean slate. Left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo. READ MORE: Exploitative And Misogynistic: Protesters Greet Return Of 26-Foot Marilyn Monroe Statue In Palm Springs Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30. California had passed its own protections that applied to more people. Newsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately to decide what to do, part of the negotiations over the state’s roughly $260 billion operating budget. An extension of the eviction ban seems likely to give California more time to spend all the money to cover unpaid rent. But landlords and tenants’ rights groups are arguing over how long that extension should last. “The expectation for people to be...
    SACRAMENTO (CBS SF/AP) — With a possible eviction crisis looming across the nation, Gov. Gavin Newsom says California will pay off all the past-due rent that accumulated in the nation’s most populated state because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic. While such a promise could make landlords whole while giving renters a clean slate, what’s left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo. READ MORE: UPDATED: 3 Dead, 5 Wounded In Richmond Fathers Day Gathering Mass Shooting Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30. California had passed its own protections that applied to more people. Newsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately to decide what to do, part of the negotiations over the state’s roughly $260 billion operating budget. An extension of the eviction ban seems likely to give California more time to spend all the money to cover unpaid rent. But landlords and tenants’ rights groups are arguing over how long...
    SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Gov. Gavin Newsom says California will pay off all the past-due rent that accumulated in the nation's most populated state because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, a promise to make landlords whole while giving renters a clean slate.Left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo.Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30. California had passed its own protections that applied to more people.RELATED: Here's how California's 2022 budget may pay your rent, parking tickets, and get you a $600 checkNewsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately to decide what to do, part of the negotiations over the state's roughly $260 billion operating budget. An extension of the eviction ban seems likely to give California more time to spend all the money to cover unpaid rent. But landlords and tenants' rights groups are arguing over how long that extension should last."The expectation for people to be up and at 'em...
    SACRAMENTO (AP/CBS13) – Gov. Gavin Newsom says California will pay off all the past-due rent that accumulated in the nation’s most populated state because of the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, a promise to make landlords whole while giving renters a clean slate. Left unsettled is whether California will continue to ban evictions for unpaid rent beyond June 30, a pandemic-related order that was meant to be temporary but is proving difficult to undo. READ MORE: It Really Doesnt Feel Real: Sister Of UC Davis Grad Killed In Russia Searches For Answers Federal eviction protections also are set to expire on June 30. California had passed its own protections that applied to more people. Newsom and legislative leaders are meeting privately to decide what to do, part of the negotiations over the state’s roughly $260 billion operating budget. An extension of the eviction ban seems likely to give California more time to spend all the money to cover unpaid rent. But landlords and tenants’ rights groups are arguing over how long that extension should last. “The expectation for people to...
    As Daily Kos continues to cover, Republicans are wasting no time in trying to distract from failures related to the novel coronavirus pandemic (or in general). Among other attempts to cause hysteria, Republican state lawmakers across the country are pushing anti-trans bills that hit a number of areas, including health care, athletics, and forms of identification, like birth certificates. While some bills have fizzled in early stages, others have actually been signed into law, thanks to Republican governors. When it comes to school athletics—and specifically the Republican effort to ban trans girls from competing on girls’ sports teams—many have wondered if the federal government will step up in a more specific way. President Joe Biden has, for example, expressed support for trans Americans both in general and in terms of athletics, as you might remember from his address to Congress back in April. But advocates have pushed for more explicit protections for trans students, and on Wednesday, the U.S. Education Department (DOE) got one step closer to delivering on that promise, per a Notice of Interpretation, as reported by The New York Times. Let’s...
    Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds (R) amped up riot protections for police and other public and civil servants by signing the “Back the Blue Act” on Thursday. Reynolds enacted the legislation — SF 342 — during a news conference at the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. “In Iowa, we Back the Blue,” a tweet from Reynolds said in part. The act increases qualified immunity protections and elevates charges related to riots and unlawful assemblies. In Iowa, we Back the Blue. Proud to sign the “Back the Blue Act” this morning at the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy! pic.twitter.com/pX0mYgLwsu — Gov. Kim Reynolds (@IAGovernor) June 17, 2021 The legislation increases the penalty for anyone who participates willingly in a riot to a “Class D Felony,” according to the text. Charges will also be elevated to a Class D Felony for anyone who assaults and seriously injures a public or civil servant and/or brandishes a dangerous weapon in the process. Assault resulting in bodily injury or mental illness will warrant an aggravated misdemeanor charge. More upgrades: Unlawful assembly considered an aggravated misdemeanor Interference with public...
    The Biden administration has announced that Title IX protections will be expanded to cover transgender students in schools that accept federal funding. On Wednesday, the Biden Department of Education said that the protections in the 1972 civil rights rule that prohibits sex-based discrimination in schools will now also cover transgender people. The rules change is in keeping with the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling that the 1964 Civil Rights Act also covers transgender people in the workplace. “Today, the Department makes clear that all students — including LGBTQ+ students —deserve the opportunity to learn and thrive in schools that are free from discrimination,” Biden Education Secretary Miguel Cardona said, according to USA Today. “The Supreme Court has upheld the right for LGBTQ+ people to live and work without fear of harassment, exclusion, and discrimination – and our LGBTQ+ students have the same rights and deserve the same protections,” Cardona added. The Education Dept. announcement nullifies a Trump ruling that blocked Title IX protections from transgender students. However, the rule will clash with new laws in a growing number of states that...
    'Happy Pride. Now, abolish the damn filibuster and pass the Equality Act,' tweeted Rep. Mondaire Jones. With Pride Month celebrations in full swing, there are at least four bills sitting in or about to be introduced to Congress right now that lawmakers could vote in favor of to help advance LGBTQ equality. Democratic members of Congress have introduced legislation that would advance LGBTQ equality this session, from prohibiting discrimination in child welfare services to mandating the collection of data on violence against LGBTQ people. The bills introduced in Congress are H.R. 5, the Equality Act; H.R. 3488 and its companion S. 1848, the John Lewis Every Child Deserves a Family Act; the LGBTQ Essential Data Act; and H.R. 3672, to expand protections for transgender dependents of members of the Armed Forces. Advocates for LGBTQ people say that they would direct resources to prevent violence against transgender people, ensure that sweeping federal nondiscrimination protections last well past equality-friendly presidential administrations, and provide vulnerable children with a better quality of life. It's...
    More On: discrimination School district asks students, staff to report ‘microaggressions’ Kathryn Garcia claims ignorance about unequal pay charge — despite evidence to contrary ‘Alarming’: Mayoral rivals on Post report of women pay inequity under Kathryn Garcia Southwest flight attendant told Muslim woman she’d ‘bring whole plane down’: report The US Department of Education will say Wednesday it’s their view that a Supreme Court ruling last year that barred workplace discrimination for gay and transgender employees extends to students in federally funded schools, a report said. The department plans to say that discrimination against gay and transgender students is barred by Title IX, a decades-old law that prohibits sex discrimination in schools funded by the US, Education Secretary Miguel Cardona told the New York Times. The interpretation of the ruling is in stark contrast to the Education Department under former President Trump, which threatened to withhold funds from federally funded schools that allowed transgender students to play on sports teams. But it’s unclear what impact the new interpretation of ruling will have on bills brought by Republicans...
    (CNN)The Education Department on Wednesday issued guidance that Title IX prohibits discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity, a reversal of the Trump administration's stance that gay and transgender students are not protected by the law."The Supreme Court has upheld the right for LGBTQ+ people to live and work without fear of harassment, exclusion, and discrimination -- and our LGBTQ+ students have the same rights and deserve the same protections. I'm proud to have directed the Office for Civil Rights to enforce Title IX to protect all students from all forms of sex discrimination," said US Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona said in a statement. "Today, the Department makes clear that all students -- including LGBTQ+ students -- deserve the opportunity to learn and thrive in schools that are free from discrimination." The New York Times was first to report the new guidance.The Trump administration in 2017 withdrew protections for transgender students in public schools that let them use bathrooms and facilities corresponding with their gender identity. And in January, the Department of Education under then-President Donald Trump issued...
    Ronel Remy, an organizer with City Life/Vida Urbana, speaks during a "Rally to Stop Evictions and Foreclosures" at the Boston Common Fountain in Boston on Oct. 11, 2020.Matthew J. Lee | Boston Globe | Getty Images Many of the more than 10 million Americans who remain behind on their rent will be at risk of eviction when the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's national ban on the proceeding lifts on June 30. But thanks to a growing number of local protections, struggling renters in a number of states and cities will be able to stay in their homes past that date. In Vermont, for example, most evictions are barred until 30 days after its state of emergency concludes, which means that as of now, struggling renters are safe until at least the middle of July. New York, meanwhile, has extended its eviction ban until September. And renters in New Jersey can't be kicked out of their homes until mid-August. More from Personal Finance:Climate change is impacting retirement plansCongress wants to make more changes to the U.S. retirement systemWhat to...
    ANTIOCH — A judge has struck down a voter-approved open-space preservation measure but kept intact the growth boundary line attached to it. Costa County Superior Court Judge Edward Weil nullified Measure T and all of its growth-control and open-space protections in his June 7 ruling. He said the measure conflicts with the recently approved state Senate Bill 330 “Housing Crisis Act” of 2019 because it reduces the number of homes allowed. Oak Hill Park LLC/Richfield had filed the lawsuit against the city of Antioch in February, saying the measure was illegal because “the city cannot modify its land-use regulations in a way that would lessen or prohibit housing development.” The lawsuit was one of the first of its kind since Senate Bill 330 passed and could have statewide implications. That bill aims to fight the state’s housing crisis by restricting local governments’ authority to block residential developments through Jan. 1, 2025. A successful ballot initiative against an Oceanside development was also overturned by a San Diego County Superior Court on May 6. However, in Contra Costa, the judge said a...
    House on Fire Indian ruins in Mule Canyon, part of the Bears Ears National Monument in southeast Utah. Secretary of Interior Debra Haaland has recommended to President Joe Biden that he restore the boundaries and protections of three national monuments—Grand Staircase-Escalante designated by President Bill Clinton in 1996, and Bears Ears and the Northeast Canyons and Seamounts, designated by President Barack Obama in 2016. In the latter case, Republicans whined about the naming as a supposed abuse of authority by Obama. Donald Trump subsequently gutted the protections and shrunk those boundaries, in part it seemed, like so many of his decisions, out of personal animus toward Obama. The background details and reasoning in Haaland’s recommendation, which she sent to Biden June 2, have yet to be released. In any event, the final decision is up to the president who, on his first day in office, called for a review to determine if restoring the monuments’ original “boundaries and protections would be appropriate.” Now Biden has a chance to restore those boundaries, or perhaps even expand them. Shortly before he left office, Obama established the 1.35 million-acre monument under the Antiquities Act...
    Immigrants and allies celebrate the Supreme Court's DACA decision last year Tuesday, June 15, marks the ninth anniversary of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which allows young undocumented immigrants to work legally and live free from the fear of deportation. Undocumented youth won the program by pressuring the Obama administration, and for nearly a decade, they have protected it from anti-immigrant attacks. When the previous administration tried to kill the program, they fought back and won. Their power is undeniable. But while DACA survived at the Supreme Court and is now fully reopen to new applications and renewals, it remains under threat due to an anti-immigrant judge in Texas, who may issue a decision on the program any day now. While undocumented youth and their allies are commemorating their win, they are also marking this anniversary by pushing leaders to act on permanent relief. “Democrats cannot allow Republicans to keep progress from happening this year,” United We Dream (UWD) executive director Greisa Martinez Rosas said. “Democrats can and must lead on their own through the reconciliation process.” Undocumented youth and their allies...
    By: KDKA-TV News Staff HARRISBURG (KDKA) — State lawmakers will unveil updated legislation to try to stop discrimination against members of the LGBTQ+ community. READ MORE: 2k Dead From COVID-19 In Allegheny County As US Death Toll Tops 600k The Pennsylvania Fairness Act would prohibit people from being denied employment and housing based on their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression. READ MORE: 3 Found Dead Inside Carnegie Home Governor Tom Wolf, Democratic State Rep. Dan Frankel and other lawmakers spoke in support of the bill today. “This legislation is long overdue in our commonwealth and will provide needed protections to members of our LGBTQIA+ community,” Wolf said. “As public servants, we have a duty to all of our constituents, to ensure that their rights are protected, and their interests are served. It is past time for our commonwealth to stop ignoring this infringement on the rights of LGBTQ Pennsylvanians and pass the Fairness Act.” MORE NEWS: Pennsylvania House Committee OKs GOP Bill To Ban Employer Vaccine Mandates While individual municipalities have certain protections for the LGBTQ+ community...
    U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland delivers remarks on voting rights at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, June 11, 2021.Tom Brenner | Pool | Reuters Attorney General Merrick Garland said Friday that the Justice Department will swiftly increase its resources dedicated to enforcing voting rights protections, citing a 2013 decision by the Supreme Court as well as bills being pushed by conservatives across the country that aim to tighten election procedures. In a speech delivered at the department's headquarters, Garland said that in the next 30 days he will double the civil rights division's staff dedicated to protecting the right to vote. The department, he said, had already begun scrutinizing new laws that he said "seek to curb voter access," as well as policies and measures that are already on the books. In particular, Garland said the department was reviewing recent studies that showed that, in some jurisdictions, nonwhite people wait in line much longer than white people to vote. "To meet the challenge of the current moment, we must rededicate the resources of the Department of Justice...
    Republican Ohio Rep. Jim Jordan and House Judiciary Committee Republicans reintroduced legislation Friday that would amend Section 230’s immunity from liability for internet content providers. The Daily Caller first obtained the legislation, titled the Protect Speech Act, which was put together by Reps Jordan, McClintock, Bishop, Tiffany, Spartz, Steube, Johnson, Fitzgerald, Issa, and Fischbach. The bill would amend Section 230, which is the portion of the law that gives internet companies immunity from lawsuits over content that users post to their sites. READ THE LEGISLATION HERE:  (DAILY CALLER OBTAINED) — … by Henry Rodgers “Big Tech’s out to get conservatives. The Protect Speech Act will crush tech’s ability to hide behind Section 230 and censor conservative speech. Judiciary Committee Republicans are proud to reintroduce this legislation today and stand up for the First Amendment on the internet,” Jordan told the Daily Caller. (RELATED: EXCLUSIVE: Senior Trump Advisers Anticipated Twitter Ban, Urged Trump To Switch To Parler In Early 2020) The legislation was originally introduced in October of 2020. “This bill modifies the immunity from liability of a provider or user of...
    Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled Senate on Thursday voted to end Gov. Tom Wolf's COVID-19 emergency lockdown order while keeping certain pandemic protections intact. Pennsylvanians voted in May to strip from Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf the emergency powers that he imposed last year. "Today we delivered on our promise to the citizens of Pennsylvania who voted yes to end the state of emergency at the ballot box in the primary," Republican State Sen. Kim Ward said in a video posted to Twitter. The move came a week after the state's Republican legislature voted to block Wolf's emergency declaration in an effort to keep businesses open and block stay-at-home orders. PENNSYLVANIA STATE TROOPERS UNION DEMANDS GOV. TOM WOLF APOLOGIZE FOR REMARKS The Pennsylvania Senate's Democratic Caucus tweeted Thursday that while it disagrees with Republican senators' vote to end Wolf's emergency declaration, it will support HB854, "which extends many important protections of such a declaration through Sept 30." Protections include continued statewide telehealth services and "more flexibility in health care to continue to combat COVID19," Democratic state senators said. Wolf renewed the emergency disaster order...
    Pennsylvania’s Senate on Thursday voted to end Gov. Tom WolfTom WolfGovernors can protect civil liberties, too Pennsylvania voters back limits on governor's emergency powers The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Biden wants Congress to pass abortion bill, pushes for Mideast cease-fire MORE’s (D) COVID-19 emergency declaration, following a move earlier this week by the state’s House. Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled legislature also ended Wolf’s ability to close businesses, implement occupancy requirements or initiate stay-at-home orders.  At the same time, the Senate passed legislation that extends waiver protections initially put into effect during the COVID-19 pandemic to hold until Sept. 30. The move to end the governor’s emergency declaration comes only a month after a majority of Pennsylvanians voted in favor of two ballot constitutional amendments that would curb the governor's pandemic response.  “Today we delivered on our promise to the citizens of Pennsylvania who voted yes to end the state of emergency at the ballot box in the primary,” said State Sen. Kim Ward (R).   But some Pennsylvania Democrats were upset over the move to end the emergency declarations. “While I...
    The Biden administration is rolling back another Republican gift to polluters with an Environmental Protection Agency announcement that the Trump administration's repeal of the Waters of the United States rule, crafted during the Obama administration, will itself be undone so that a new version of the rule can be crafted. This was expected; actually crafting a new version, though, will be the hard part. In a New York Times report, however, EPA administrator Michael Regan suggests that a return to the exact Obama-era rule is unlikely. Instead, newly developed rules will take from "the lessons learned" by both the Obama and Trump versions. The heart of the issue is a long-running battle over just what ought to count as the "waters" of the United States, when it comes to providing the anti-pollution protections of the Clean Water Act. The Obama administration's rule greatly broadened the scope of the act by including wetlands, streams, and other small waterways that had previously gone unprotected. This meant that polluters leaking fertilizers or other toxins into small streams, including streams that might flow only during...
    In an aerial view, low water levels are visible at Lake Oroville on June 01, 2021 in Oroville, California.Justin Sullivan | Getty Images The Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army on Wednesday announced their intent to expand the number of U.S. waterways that receive protections under the Clean Water Act. The move would reverse a rule adopted last year by the Trump administration, which limited the bodies of water that could receive federal protection. The Biden administration wants to expand protections to streams, ditches and wetlands that feed into larger bodies of water. EPA Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement that the Trump administration policy had led to "significant environmental degradation." The EPA and the Army said they discovered that the Trump rule significantly reduced clean water protections, a major issue as the U.S. West grapples with a severe drought and water supply shortages. In New Mexico and Arizona, the agencies found that almost all of more than 1,500 streams assessed were non-jurisdictional and thus unable to receive protection from the federal government. Jaime Pinkham, acting assistant...
    The Biden administration will seek to expand the scope of waters covered by federal protections beyond the Trump administration definition, again throwing water pollution mandates into limbo. “The EPA and Department of the Army have determined that this rule is leading to significant environmental degradation,” Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan said in a statement. BIDEN BUDGET WOULD AX MORE THAN A DOZEN FOSSIL FUEL TAX BREAKS “We are committed to establishing a durable definition of ‘waters of the United States’ based on Supreme Court precedent and drawing from the lessons learned from the current and previous regulations, as well as input from a wide array of stakeholders,” he added. Which waters are covered by federal protections has been a point of regulatory tension for years, following the Obama administration’s Waters of the U.S., or WOTUS, rule. Republican politicians and industry groups have long complained the Obama rule is a prime example of regulatory overreach. The Trump administration’s rewrite, known as the Navigable Waters Protection rule, outlined four types of waters that are covered by federal protections: traditional navigable waters,...
    When President Joe Biden meets with European leaders next week, he will commit to dropping tariffs protecting U.S. steel and aluminum and resolving other trade disputes this summer, according to a report from Bloomberg News. The Trump administration put in place tariffs on steel and aluminum that it said were necessary to prevent the U.S. from becoming dependent on foreign metals, a situation that an extensive government review said would be a threat to national security. China’s share of global crude steel production increased from 53.3 percent in 2019 to 56.5 percent in 2020. Although the U.S. imports little to no steel from China directly, China’s overproduction depresses prices in the global market. Part of the concern over becoming import metals dependent is that other countries could attempt to use their steel and aluminum production to constrain U.S. policy. Even a close ally such as France or Canada could attempt to use our oil dependence to influence U.S. policy on climate change or threaten to cut off supply seen as supporting the U.S. in a military conflict those countries oppose. An...
    The Seattle City Council has passed some of the strictest tenant protections to date, weeks before Washington's eviction moratorium is set to end. The new protections stem from three bills passed by the nine-member council on Monday afternoon by a vote of 7-2 for each bill. Seattle City Council members Debora Juarez and Alex Pedersen were the lone "no" votes on the three bills. The first bill restricts landlords from issuing evictions for families of school-aged children and teachers over the school year. For Seattle Public Schools, the school year typically runs through early September through mid-June. San Francisco passed similar legislation in 2016. The second bill bans landlords from evicting tenants due to non-payment if they defaulted during the city's declared state of emergency over COVID. Landlords would be able to "recover rent owed through a separate civil action." A third bill passed by the city council on Monday will have landlords give tenants the right to turn down a new lease by the end of their current lease, "unless the landlord has just cause...
    BOSTON (CBS) — A bill set to be debated Thursday in the Massachusetts would extend some pandemic emergency policies beyond June 15, which is when the state of emergency will expire. The State House News Service reports extensions for early voting by mail, remote-only public meetings, takeout cocktails and eviction protections are on the table. Cocktails-to-go would be allowed through March 1, 2022 under the bill. Early voting by mail could take place for any local and state elections until Dec. 15, 2021. Remote meetings could continue until April 1, 2022, which is when eviction protections would also expire. READ MORE: Baby Born Prematurely At 1.9 Pounds Leaves Franciscan Childrens Hospital Just In Time For First Birthday The bill has been endorsed by the Senate Ways and Means Committee. READ MORE: Representation Matters, Sales Of Diverse Dolls Booming At Mall Kiosk In Brockton Last month, the Senate declined to add budget amendments that would have extended pandemic-era help, including takeout cocktails and a cap on fees charged to restaurants by delivery apps. MORE NEWS: John Parker Ordered Held Without Bail...
    The Supreme Court handed down its landmark ruling legalizing same-sex marriage six years ago this June, a decision that was especially resonant because it occurred during Pride month. This month, the Senate is likely to to have the chance to pass civil rights legislation with similar significance for LGBTQ Americans, if it isn't stymied by Republican opposition. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced last month that the Senate could take up the Equality Act, which would enshrine legal protections for LGBTQ Americans, in June. Still, it's not yet clear whether the Senate will actually consider the House-passed bill during Pride month. Twenty-nine states do not have laws that explicitly shield LGBTQ Americans from discrimination, resulting in a patchwork of protections that vary from state to state. The Equality Act would extend protections to cover federally funded programs, employment, housing, loan applications, education and public accommodations. "This would, for the first time, give us a comprehensive blanket of protections across the country that are badly needed," said Zeke Stokes, a consultant for GLAAD, which is leading the organization's Summer of Equality...
    More On: Coronavirus Foo Fighters to play first concert back at Madison Square Garden Food for thought: Plant-based eaters have an advantage when it comes to COVID, study says TSA sees highest number of travelers in airports since start of the pandemic Study finds postpartum mental health visits increased during pandemic GENEVA — Envoys from World Trade Organization member nations are taking up a proposal to ease patents and other intellectual property protections for COVID-19 vaccines to help developing countries fight the pandemic, an idea backed by the Biden administration but opposed in other wealthy countries with strong pharmaceutical industries. On the table for a two-day meeting of a WTO panel opening Tuesday is a revised proposal presented by India and South Africa for a temporary IP waiver on coronavirus vaccines. The idea has drawn support from more than 60 countries, which now include the United States and China. Some European Union member states oppose the idea and the EU on Friday offered an alternative proposal that relies on existing World Trade Organization rules. The 27-nation bloc said those...
    Sharks don’t have the best reputation amongst humans, even though humans kill way more sharks every year than sharks kill humans. In media and consequently, many people’s imaginations, sharks are ruthless animals that will kill someone if given the chance. The truth of the matter is, sharks are much more scared of humans than people can imagine. Furthermore, some sharks don’t even have the big, pointy teeth that make humans so afraid of them.   Basking sharks, which can be up to forty-five feet long and ten thousand pounds, are the second-largest fish after whale sharks. Despite their intimidating size, these sharks are harmless to humans. Their main food source is plankton, which they catch by swimming near the surface with their mouths open. Sadly, these amazing animals are currently listed as endangered on the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species. While there are many protections currently in place for basking sharks, this wasn’t always the case. They used to be heavily hunted for their liver oil, fins, and meat. Ireland, a...
    DHS Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas meets with Haitian community leaders following the redesignation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status. Nearly 120 local and national organizations, including African Communities Together and U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants, are calling for an 18-month extension and redesignation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Somalia. The nation’s designation is set to expire in September but “armed conflict and extraordinary conditions” make a safe return for Somali nationals “impossible,” the groups tell Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas. “New and escalating government corruption and natural disasters qualify Somalia for redesignation as well,” the groups said. “Both extension and redesignation are vital to safeguard the lives of both current TPS holders and Somalis who have arrived in the United States since the last redesignation in 2012. Given current conditions in Somalia, the maximum protection of an 18-month extension and redesignation is both legally and morally warranted.” The ask to Mayorkas and the Biden administration follows the redesignation of TPS for Haiti late last month, marking a huge victory for Black immigrants and advocacy groups that had been leading the fight. “TPS protects...
    (CNN)The Biden administration announced on Friday plans to review and revise a handful of Trump-era regulations that critics feared rolled back protections for endangered and threatened species.The reviews, conducted by the US Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service, are being cheered by environmental groups, which said the Trump administration rules would have allowed for more oil and gas drilling and limited how much regulators consider the impacts of the climate crisis, in addition to weakening protections on endangered species.The Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, which the National Marine Fisheries Service is a part of, said in Friday's announcement that they will target five specific regulations, and their plan includes recommendations to rescind certain critical habitat regulations, as well as to reinstate some protections for species listed as "threatened" under the act. The recommendations "will undergo a rigorous and transparent rulemaking process," according to the Fish and Wildlife Service and NOAA. Biden administration to suspend oil and gas drilling leases in Arctic refuge, undoing a Trump-era decision"The U.S. Fish and Wildlife...
    The gap between LGBQT+ inclusive states and noninclusive parts of the U.S. is widening, with the top 25 states improving their protections of members for the community and the bottom 25 moving backward, according to the latest ranking of the 50 states from Out Leadership. Out Leadership, a global LGBTQ+ business advisory that helps companies advance LGBTQ+ equality, has released its third annual "State LGBTQ+ Business Climate Index for 2021" ranking states based on how inclusive and protective they are of members of the community.  The index was released in time for Pride Month in June, a period that President Biden said marks both a time to reflect on the trials the LGBTQ+ community has endured and an opportunity to celebrate its triumphs in the fight for full equality.  The index, according to Out Leadership founder Todd Sears, is a barometer of progress made and "seeks to explain and really clarify and shine a light on the discrimination that still exists all across the United States." "Unfortunately, when marriage equality passed, too many Americans thought the fight was over,...
    More On: Coronavirus Fauci’s emails should put an end to the cult media built around him First cases of black fungus from Indian COVID variant found outside country House Republicans demand briefing on White House ‘gain-of-function’ policies Bahrain offers Pfizer booster for some who got Chinese shots Customers are noshing on free samples in the grocery aisle again — albeit with more pandemic protections than before. Two weeks ago, grocery chain Stew Leonard’s began handing out bite-sized samples of its homemade cheesecake stuffed into tiny paper cups — but only after building 28 plexiglass booths to keep employees at a safe distance from customers. Just last week the New York metro area chain added five more food items to its giveaway –watermelons, pineapples, chicken burgers, salad and Stew Leonard-branded chocolate cream pies — all of which are being handed out through a small opening at the bottom of its handcrafted plexiglass booths by masked and gloved employees. The quirky chain known for its petting zoos and animatronic displays only reintroduced the practice after polling customers via its...
    Newark, New Jersey.Sean Pavone | iStock | Getty Images Since September, most renters across the country have been protected from eviction, thanks to an unprecedented moratorium on the proceedings ordered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Now that ban will expire in less than a month, and millions of Americans could find eviction notices on their front doors. "We're going to see what we've been managing to stave off: this wave of evictions that is just going to crush some of these areas," said John Pollock, coordinator of the National Coalition for a Civil Right to Counsel.  Yet there a handful of states that will continue to ban evictions beyond June 30. Zoom In IconArrows pointing outwards New York has extended its eviction moratorium until September for tenants who've endured a Covid-related setback or for whom moving could pose a health risk. To qualify, renters must submit a hardship form to their landlord. New Jersey won't allow evictions to proceed until two months after its state of emergency status is lifted, which is expected to occur in mid-June, meaning...
    Former Vice President Mike Pence travels to New Hampshire Thursday, where he will deliver a speech condemning Democratic plans to overhaul voting laws, kicking off Republican primary season. He is the first of the likely 2024 runners to visit the early primary state since the election. Pence will address the Hillsborough County Republican Committee’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Awards Dinner in Manchester, where $250 VIP tickets sold out. He is one of the frontrunners in a field that includes former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, as everyone waits to see what Donald Trump decides.  It follows an appearance in another early state, South Carolina, where Pence promised to keep pushing back on the 'liberal agenda' of President Biden. A source close to Pence said he was planning to attack Democrats' plans to overhaul voting laws. Former Vice President Mike Pence will attack Democrats plans for overhauling voter laws when he addresses Republicans in New Hampshire on Thursday evening $250 VIP tickets have sold out for the Hillsborough County Republican Committee’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Awards Dinner at the...
    A Louisiana Senate committee turned back an effort Tuesday to lessen lawsuit protections for law enforcement officers who engage in “unreasonable” and “unconstitutional” conduct. Under the concept of “qualified immunity,” law enforcement officers accused of violating citizens’ constitutional rights can be protected from civil lawsuits if the officer didn’t have prior knowledge the behavior was unconstitutional. Qualified immunity does not affect criminal liability. Rep. Edmond Jordan, a Democrat who represents parts of East and West Baton Rouge parishes, said the principle, in effect, means a citizen can’t win a lawsuit against law enforcement unless the exact same set of facts has been established as a violation, which he argued is not a reasonable standard. He mentioned examples, such as a seven-months-pregnant woman who was handcuffed and tased, where the court ruled that an officer’s behavior was both unreasonable and unconstitutional but still was protected by qualified immunity. “Qualified immunity has become absolute immunity,” said Jordan, author of House Bill 609. Michael Ranatza, executive director of the Louisiana Sheriffs' Association, endorsed the bill, which he said would codify how Louisiana courts...
    The Biden administration and the Democrats in Congress have made it clear that they will stop at nothing to advance their radical agenda. With President Biden’s proposed budget failing to include Hyde Amendment protections, taxpayers will be footing the bill for the Democrats' abortion dreams.  From his first week in the Oval Office, Biden is shaping up to be the least pro-Life president in history. Forcing taxpayers to fund abortions in direct violation of conscience rights will have tragic consequences for unborn babies. Provisions like the Hyde Amendment, first passed by Congress in 1976 to prevent the federal funding of abortions, have historically had bipartisan support, including the support of then-Senator Biden. Even President Obama signed an executive order supporting the Hyde Amendment, but that’s not the case in this far-left administration. In just his first week in office, President Biden reversed President Trump’s policy that banned taxpayer funds from supporting groups that provide abortion services overseas. BIDEN BUDGET EXCLUDES DECADES-OLD PROVISION BARRING TAXPAYER FUNDING OF ABORTIONS  In February, Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee blocked Ranking Member Cathy McMorris Rodgers’ amendment to include Hyde...
    President BidenJoe BidenBill that would mandate Asian-American history lessons in Illinois schools heads to governor's desk Five things to know about the new spotlight on UFOs Biden shows little desire to reverse Trump's Cuba policies MORE on Tuesday issued a proclamation recognizing June as Pride Month and underscoring the need to keep fighting to ensure equal rights for members of the LGBTQ community. "Pride is both a jubilant communal celebration of visibility and a personal celebration of self-worth and dignity. This Pride Month, we recognize the valuable contributions of LGBTQ+ individuals across America, and we reaffirm our commitment to standing in solidarity with LGBTQ+ Americans in their ongoing struggle against discrimination and injustice," Biden said in the proclamation. Biden's recognition of Pride Month is notable given former President Donald TrumpDonald TrumpBill that would mandate Asian-American history lessons in Illinois schools heads to governor's desk Five things to know about the new spotlight on UFOs Biden shows little desire to reverse Trump's Cuba policies MORE did not take note of the annual celebration of the LGBTQ community last year. Instead, the Trump administration...
    A group of university professors and scholars on Tuesday signed onto a statement calling for increased federal voting protections, warning that U.S. democracy is “now at risk” with the wave of recent GOP-led legislative proposals across the country seeking to implement sweeping voting overhauls. The dozens of academics, which included political science and government professors at schools like Stanford, Harvard and Cornell, in the letter called themselves “scholars of democracy who have watched the recent deterioration of U.S. elections and liberal democracy with growing alarm.”  “Specifically, we have watched with deep concern as Republican-led state legislatures across the country have in recent months proposed or implemented what we consider radical changes to core electoral procedures in response to unproven and intentionally destructive allegations of a stolen election,” they added.  “Collectively, these initiatives are transforming several states into political systems that no longer meet the minimum conditions for free and fair elections,” the scholars added in the statement, which was published by public policy think tank New America.  The scholars went on to say that with these proposed election changes, “our entire...
                        On Sunday U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA-01) announced that he co-signed a letter to the U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and demanded investigations into the Wuhan lab. Carter, in a newsletter he emailed to constituents Sunday, said “China allowed this virus to spread and they need to be held accountable” and that “we need to fully understand what happened and make sure it never happens again”. “In our letter to Speaker Pelosi we wrote, ‘we request that you instruct the appropriate Democrat committee chairs to immediately join Republican calls to hold the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) accountable for its role in causing the global COVID-19 pandemic. There is mounting evidence the pandemic started in a Chinese lab, and the CCP covered it up. If that is the case, the CCP is responsible for the deaths of almost 600,000 Americans and millions more worldwide. These questions about the CCP’s liability are not a diversion, as you falsely claimed. To the contrary, every American family that lost someone...
                        U.S. Rep. Buddy Carter (R-GA-01) and U.S. Rep. Vern Buchanan (R-FL-16) this month wrote U.S. President Joe Biden and expressed concerns about the president’s support for waiving Intellectual Property (IP) protections related to the COVID-19 vaccines. This, according to a newsletter that Carter emailed his constituents. “Waiving the IP protections for the COVID-19 vaccines will be a disaster. The insane move from the Biden Administration not only counters our patent system, it will stifle the innovation of lifesaving drugs and cures by removing the incentives for investment,” Carter said. “It is also a gift to China who has spent decades trying to steal American innovation, and who spent all last year trying to steal COVID-19 vaccine IP. We cannot allow this to happen.” Members of Carter’s staff published the letter to Biden on the congressman’s website. “We remain committed to working together to address the global needs of vaccine distribution, but this proposed waiver will not help us meet that goal. Intellectual Property (IP) protections have fostered life-saving...
    By Chris Hacker SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (CBS) — Two bills introduced in response to a CBS 2 investigation unanimously passed the Illinois House of Representatives Thursday, clearing the way for them to become state law. READ MORE: Man Shot While In Car With 7-Year-Old Boy On 95th Street Near Stony Island Avenue The two pieces of legislation were created after a pair of CBS 2 reports uncovered the sensitive personal details of young survivors of sexual violence had been left visible in Cook County court records. That exposure of private information violated a 1986 state law that required such information — including names, phone numbers, addresses and more — be removed from any court documents available to the public. When CBS 2 brought its findings to the person responsible for maintaining court documents, then-Court Clerk Dorothy Brown, her office resisted taking action for weeks before finally promising to fix the problem. But months after Brown’s staff did finally commit to making changes, CBS 2 found the records still hadn’t been fixed. READ MORE: 2 People Rushed To Hospital From Fire In Norwood...
    Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) said he is a “no” vote Thursday on a China bill because it does not protect against intellectual property theft. “I support a real #China bill And a real China bill is one that has in place safeguards to prevent billions of dollars of research being stolen I will not vote to end debate on the China bill until those safeguards are in place,” he tweeted: I support a real #China bill And a real China bill is one that has in place safeguards to prevent billions of dollars of research being stolen I will not vote to end debate on the China bill until those safeguards are in place — Marco Rubio (@marcorubio) May 27, 2021 Rubio spoke Monday to Breitbart News’s Matt Boyle about the bill in which he said the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) senses an “opportunity” with Democrat President Joe Biden in the White House regarding the legislation: Rubio pointed to bipartisan legislation the U.S. Senate is considering this week called the Endless Frontier Act as an example of the United States being weak...