THIS WEEK IN THE NEWS
June 2 to June 6, 2014
Attorney General Schneiderman’s proposed legislation to address the increase in abandoned, “zombie” properties plaguing communities statewide received further support this week from 16 mayors, who sent a letter to the leadership of the State legislature urging for the bill’s quick passage. This letter followed a press conference held in Albany by the New York Conference of Mayors echoing those calls for the legislation’s passing. The Plattsburgh Press-Republican editorial board also expressed its support for this measure. Finally, in an op-ed published on the Huffington Post, Attorney General Schneiderman urged the legislature to take up his legislation with a simple point: “Passing the Zombie Kill-Bill is a no brainer.”
It is currently estimated that, in New York, there are more than 15,000 derelict, zombie homes in the midst of foreclosure, all of which are vulnerable to crime, decay, vandalism and arson. If passed, the Abandoned Property Neighborhood Relief Act – also known as the Zombie Kill Bill – would bring necessary support to localities overrun by vacant homes by making lenders financially responsible for the upkeep of abandoned properties soon after they have been deserted, instead of at the end of a lengthy foreclosure process.
The Attorney General announced the arrest of two employees and the indictment of seven other employees of the Medford Multicare Center for Living on Long Island. The employees are accused of criminal negligence, including intentionally ignoring several alarms indicating the distress of a resident, leading to the 72-year-old patient’s death. All the defendants face up to four years behind bars, if found guilty of the 27 felony counts charged in the indictment.
Schneiderman Reaches $105 Million National Settlement With GlaxoSmithKline, Ending Deceptive Advertising And Off-Label Promotion Of Several Prescription Drugs
Joining 43 other attorneys general, Attorney General Schneiderman reached a $105 million settlement with GlaxoSmithKline, resolving charges of improper marketing and promotion of several prescription drugs. GlaxoSmithKline also allegedly promoted one drug, through its “Happy, Horny, Skinny Pill” campaign, for off-label uses that were not approved by the FDA. Under this agreement, GlaxoSmithKline will change the marketing of its drugs and cease off-label promotion. New York will receive more than $4.1 million.
Attorney General Schneiderman commended the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) proposed rules, which would, for the first time, limit emissions of climate change pollution from existing fossil fuel power-plants. This proposal follows the Attorney General’s ongoing work with the EPA to ensure the agency fulfills its obligations under the Clean Air Act, including a 2011 settlement that established a schedule for the EPA to set limits on emissions. The proposed rules would also offer states and power companies flexibility in fashioning strategies to achieve needed reductions in climate change pollutions, expanding on the model of New York’s successful Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
Through his settlement with a Broome County limo service, Attorney General Schneiderman secured the return of $20,000 to the company’s drivers, who were illegally cheated out of their tips. The company will also pay $20,000 in penalties to the State and will now fully company with the law. This agreement is the latest action in the Attorney General’s ongoing efforts to stand up for workers and New York’s middle class.
Attorney General Schneiderman announced the arrest of a nurse at the Golden Hill Care Center in Kingston who allegedly failed to administer CPR when an 80-year-old resident stopped breathing – a move that was in direct violation of the wishes expressed by the resident and the resident’s family. The resident died as a result. If found guilty, the defendant faces up to four years in prison.
Please join Attorney General Schneiderman for a Nassau County Community forum on June 26 at the Nathan L.H. Bennett Pavilion in Hempstead. See the flyer below for complete details.
The Mid-Hudson Valley Community forum originally scheduled for June 9 has been rescheduled to Thursday, July 17 at 6pm at Marist College. See the flyer below for complete details.
In Other News…
As part of his statewide program, Attorney General Schneiderman held another successful gun buyback in Niagara Falls. The buyback helped take a total of 130 unwanted or unused firearms off of New York streets.
Attorney General Schneiderman’s Office was honored by the National Association of Attorneys General with the “Best Brief Award,” in recognition of the office’s Supreme Court amicus brief in the case Harris v. Quinn.
Attorney General Schneiderman praised the SEC for announcing new market reforms to curb unfair advantages for high-frequency traders.
A representative of the Attorney General’s Office joined Congresswoman Nita Lowey and other officials in Westchester to advise seniors on how to avoid scams targeting them, including a new Grandparent Scam.
The Attorney General also commemorated the 70th anniversary of the D-Day invasion.
Attorney General Schneiderman attended Albany County Executive Dan McCoy’s Soldier On benefit concert, the proceeds of which will help fund the construction of a housing center for local veterans.
For more info on the Attorney General or other political figures don’t hesitate to hit us up at RandyKFisher@gmail.com.
Posted by Charles Fisher and Randy Fisher (Twitter @HHSYC).