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Local
South Tulsa businesses to get relief from loitering
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South Tulsa businesses to get relief from loitering

South Tulsa businesses to get relief from loitering

South Tulsa businesses to get relief from loitering

Tulsa police are cracking down on loitering on South Memorial between 41st and 51st. 

Some businesses now have signs saying "no loitering." 

Police wrote more than 30 tickets on Friday for trespassing and traffic violations. 

One business owner said she knows of fights that have started on parking lots on the east side of Memorial. 

Police say they will continue to patrol the area to try to keep everyone safe.

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  • Climate change in the Western U.S. means more intense and frequent wildfires churning out waves of smoke that scientists say will sweep across the continent to affect tens of millions of people and cause a spike in premature deaths. That emerging reality is prompting people in cities and rural areas alike to gird themselves for another summer of sooty skies along the West Coast and in the Rocky Mountains — the regions widely expected to suffer most from blazes tied to dryer, warmer conditions. “There’s so little we can do. We have air purifiers and masks — otherwise we’re just like ‘Please don’t burn,’” said Sarah Rochelle Montoya of San Francisco, who fled her home with her husband and children last fall to escape thick smoke enveloping the city from a disastrous fire roughly 150 miles away. Other sources of air pollution are in decline in the U.S. as coal-fired power plants close and fewer older cars roll down highways. But those air quality gains are being erased in some areas by the ill effects of massive clouds of smoke that can spread hundreds and even thousands of miles on cross-country winds, according to researchers. With the 2019 fire season already heating up with fires from southern California to Canada, authorities are scrambling to better protect the public before smoke again blankets cities and towns. Officials in Seattle recently announced plans to retrofit five public buildings as smoke-free shelters.
  • First lady Melania Trump announced Tuesday that her director of communications, Stephanie Grisham, has been named as the new White House press secretary. >> Read more trending news  'I can think of no better person to serve the Administration & our country,' Trump said in a statement posted on Twitter. The first lady said Grisham will also serve as White House director of communications, a position that's been vacant since former Fox News executive Bill Shine left the role in March. Axios reported President Donald Trump wanted Grisham in the position and that he's said he likes and trusts her. The news site noted she's one of the few officials who has been with President Trump since his campaign. She will continue to serve as the first lady's spokeswoman as well, CNN reported. Grisham will become the fourth woman to serve as White House press secretary. President Trump announced two weeks ago that the third woman to serve in the role, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, plans to step down at the end of June. Before serving as the first lady's spokeswoman, Grisham worked under Trump's first press secretary, Sean Spicer, The Washington Post reported. She also previously worked on Republican Mitt Romney's 2012 presidential campaign, according to the newspaper. “During the campaign, she developed a good relationship with the president, and that’s carried through,” Sanders said of Grisham in an interview late last year, according to the Post. “She has developed a great amount of trust from both the president and the first lady, which is a pretty high commodity here. There aren’t a lot of people who have a lot of regular interaction with both of them.”
  • The Forsyth County, Georgia sheriff's office has released body camera footage of the moments deputies rescued an abandoned newborn found in a plastic shopping bag. >> Read more trending news  Neighbors heard a baby crying and discovered 'Baby India' tied up in the bag earlier this month, WSB-TV reported.  The new video shows deputies tearing open the bag to find the newborn with her umbilical cord still attached. The video shows officers frantically wrapping the crying baby in a jacket. She has since been taken into the custody of the Division of Family and Children services' care and is in good health.  Deputies hope releasing the body camera footage will generate more leads and help find the infant's mother. WARNING: Graphic video below. Police are asking anyone with information to call the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office at 770-888-7308. Callers can remain anonymous. 
  • A sleeping passenger on an Air Canada flight said she woke up “all alone” in a “cold, dark” plane after arriving in Toronto earlier this month after a weekend trip to Quebec. >> Read more trending news  Passenger Tiffani Adams recounted what she called a “nightmare” in a social media post shared by a friend June 19. “I wake up around midnight (few hours after flight landed) freezing cold still strapped in my seat in complete darkness (I’m talking pitch black). As someone with an anxiety disorder as is, I can tell you how terrifying this was. I think I’m having a bad dream [because], like seriously, how is this happening!!? Adams said in the Facebook post. She first tried to call a friend, but her cellphone battery died and there was no power in the plane, so she couldn’t recharge it. She said she was “full on panicking” by the time she reached the cockpit looking for a means of calling attention to her plight, but nothing worked in the cockpit. >> Trending: Mysterious feline species called a cat-fox discovered prowling around French island She said she found a flashlight in the cockpit and tried shining the light out the windows but nobody came to her assistance. Finally, Adams managed to get a cabin door unbolted and was considering the steep drop to the tarmac below when she spotted a ground crew worker, who helped get her out of the jet. After realizing the mistake, Air Canada employees offered her a limo ride and a free hotel stay, but Adams said she refused the offer because she just wanted to get home. Now she’s having a tough time sleeping after the scary ordeal. “I haven’t got much sleep since the reoccurring night terrors and waking up anxious and afraid I’m alone locked up someplace dark,” she said. The airline said it is investigating how the flight crew missed Adams when they deplaned. >> Trending: Enormous, furry head of 40,000 year old Ice Age wolf found in melting Siberian permafrost  The airline confirmed the incident took place, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, but refused to comment on disembarking procedures or how Adams could have been left on the plane.
  • A consumer watchdog group says high levels of arsenic were found in bottled water sold at three major retailers. The website Investorplace.com reports testing done by the non-profit Center for Environmental Health found arsenic in the Starkey brand sold at Whole Foods and the Peñafel brand sold at Target and Walmart. The exact levels were not disclosed because the group is in the process of suing Whole Foods and Keurig Dr. Pepper, which makes Peñafel. But they say it's above the level requiring a health warning under California’s consumer protection law. You can read more about the story here.

Washington Insider

  • In a flurry of motions by prosecutors and lawyers for indicted Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA), government attorneys submitted to a federal judge a number of examples of how Hunter allegedly used money contributed to his campaign to instead pay for romantic outings with a series of women who were not his wife. 'Shortly after he arrived in Washington, Hunter began to use funds contributed to the Duncan D. Hunter for Congress Campaign to carry out a series of intimate relationships,' a new document filed on Monday detailed for a federal judge. 'At trial, the evidence will demonstrate that Hunter improperly used campaign funds to pursue these romances wholly unrelated to either his congressional campaigns or his official duties as a member of Congress,' prosecutors said in a 'statement of facts.' Stating there was a 'voluminous nature' of evidence against Hunter, the document set out an image of a Congressman who had affairs with lobbyists and Congressional staffers, paying for their meals, trips, and nights on the town with campaign funds. 'In March 2010, for example, the couple took a weekend “double date” road trip to Virginia Beach with their friends, one of whom was also a congressman. Hunter spent $905 in campaign funds to pay for the hotel bar tab and room he shared with (Individual-14) that weekend,' the documents related. The documents listed evidence about Hunter's relationships with: + Individual 14 - a lobbyist,  + Individual 15 - a staffer who worked in the office of a member of the House leadership,  + Individual 16 - a staffer in his Congressional office,  + Individual 17 - a lobbyist,  + Individual 18 - a lobbyist. The court submission sometimes left little to the imagination, as it noted Hunter engaging in 'intimate personal activities' with these individuals, which was not related to his campaign or duties as a lawmaker. The release of the information by prosecutors came as lawyers for Rep. Hunter asked the judge in the case to exclude a number of pieces of evidence, as Hunter has alleged he is the victim of a political persecution. 'The investigation of Congressman Hunter by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of California began shortly after his public endorsement of candidate Trump,' Hunter's lawyers wrote in one of a series of evidence challenges, alleging that two prosecutors involved in the case were supporters of Hillary Clinton. 'Any explanation the Government gives now for initiating the investigation of Congressman Hunter should be viewed with total skepticism through the lens of their attempts to cover up the partisan political activities of the prosecutors that initiated the investigation,' lawyers for Hunter added.
  • Flanked by several progressive Democrats from the U.S. House, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) unveiled plans on Monday to zero out well over $1 trillion in college student loan debt held by Americans, part of a broader call by some lawmakers to make tuition much more affordable for students at public colleges and universities. 'If you can bail out Wall Street, you can bail out the middle class of this country,' Sanders said at a news conference outside the U.S. Capitol. 'We have a generation of people who are drowning in debt,' said Sanders, as he urged older Americans to realize that times have dramatically changed since they were able to use Pell Grants or a part time job to help pay their college tuition. 'It was literally easier for me to become the youngest woman in American history elected to Congress than it is to pay off my student loan debt,' said Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY). There were different pieces of legislation released today on the issue - one from Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) is titled the 'Student Debt Cancellation Act of 2019' - and focuses just on the issue of erasing student debt. Omar's bill would also prevent the loan forgiveness from being considered taxable income for an individual, and does not allow any refunds of payments already made. 'Corporations and the wealthiest Americans have repeatedly gotten tax breaks and bailouts,' said Omar. 'It’s time for a bailout for the 45 million Americans who are shackled with student debt.' The immediate reaction among Republicans and conservatives was skeptical - to say the least. 'Universities will be able to increase tuition at will if they know the gov’t is just going to forgive the debt anyway,' tweeted Rep. Anthony Gonzalez (R-OH). The plan from Sanders and others would apply to all with student loan debt - no matter their current income levels. His bill would also aim to drastically reduce the cost of tuition at public colleges and universities - with a total cost estimate of $2.2 trillion. 'The estimated $2.2 trillion cost of the bill would be paid for by a tax on Wall Street speculation,' Sanders said in a release about the legislation. The plan would institute a transaction tax of 0.5 percent on stock trades, as well as a 0.1 percent fee on bonds, and a .0005 percent fee on derivatives.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Monday that a government ban on the registration of what federal officials believe are 'immoral or scandalous' trademarks violates the First Amendment, saying it was not right that free speech would protect 'good morals,' but not trademarks which 'denigrate those concepts.' 'The registration of such marks serves only to further coarsen our popular culture,' Justice Elena Kagan wrote for the Court. 'But we are not legislators and cannot substitute a new statute for the one now in force.' The case involved artist and entrepreneur Erik Brunetti, who wanted a trademark for his clothing like 'FUCT' - which he says is pronounced not as a word, but with the individual letters, F-U-C-T.  'But you might read it differently and, if so, you would hardly be alone,' Kagan wrote for the Court, as patent and trademark officials refused to approve Brunetti's request, labeling it a 'total vulgar.' This ruling overturned those decisions. While agreeing with the basics of the decision, Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote in a concurring opinion that while the decision protects free speech, the results might offend many people. 'The Court’s decision today will beget unfortunate results,' Sotomayor wrote in a concurrence with Justice Stephen Breyer. “Everyone can think of a small number of words (including the apparent homonym of Brunetti’s mark) that would, however, plainly qualify,” Sotomayor added. The decision could have implications past trademarks, as states routinely reject vanity license plate applications because of certain words which would be used. You can read the full ruling here.
  • With a new Acting Secretary of Defense taking charge at the Pentagon on Monday, the Trump Administration continues to feature a number of leaders in top federal agencies and departments of the Executive Branch who have been appointed on a temporary basis, many without ever being officially nominated to fill that position. For President Donald Trump, that's not a bad thing. 'Acting gives you much greater flexibility. A lot easier to do things,' the President told reporters last week when Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan withdrew as a possible nominee for the post Defense Secretary.  Some in Congress - in both parties - see it differently. 'When you have 'acting' after your name, you're not it,' Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK) told reporters after the President notified him of Shanahan's departure. 'Every position at DHS (Department of Homeland Security) with responsibility for immigration or border security is now held by a temporary appointee,' said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL). Experts on the workings of government see the trend in 'Acting' officials in simple terms - it's a question of power. 'I argue that presidents strategically use their prerogative to immediately fill vacancies with unconfirmed 'acting' officials, or leave them empty, to expand their executive power,' said Christina Kinane of Yale University's Department of Political Science. But the Federal Vacancies Reform Act puts a limit of 210 days on how long there can be 'acting' officials in some of these posts, though there are a variety of ways to circumvent that time frame. Here are some examples from federal agencies and departments on what their leadership rosters look like: 1. The Department of Defense. With the departure of Acting Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan, President Trump announced his intent to nominate Army Secretary Mark Esper for the job of Secretary of Defense. While that nomination is not official as yet, two things should be noted: because of the laws governing how long someone can temporarily fill that job, Esper might only be able to serve as 'Acting Secretary' until July 30. And if he is officially nominated for the post, someone else would have to take that 'Acting' job during his confirmation process.  At the Pentagon, that's not the only top job with a temporary appointee. The number two slot of Deputy Secretary of Defense - that was Shanahan's old job - is being temporarily filled by the military's Comptroller David Norquist, who is 'Performing the Duties of the Deputy Secretary of Defense.' Like Esper, the President says he will nominate Norquist for that post, but it has not happened as yet. The number three job at the Pentagon is in the hands of Lisa Hershman, as the Acting Chief Management Officer. In terms of the service branches, there is an Acting Secretary of the Air Force, and with the Army Secretary moving up, there will soon be an Acting Secretary of the Army as well. In other words, much of the Pentagon leadership is in an 'acting' mode at this point - and will be that way for months to come. 2. Department of Homeland Security. In terms of high-profile positions in the Trump Administration, DHS may be the most clear cut example of where temporary leaders are being used. The Acting Secretary is Kevin McAleenan, the former head of the Border Patrol. He's well respected, but has not been nominated for the DHS post. His top aide is a 'Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Deputy Secretary.' According to the DHS website, there are 13 senior officials working in an 'Acting' capacity in the various agencies in DHS. There is an Acting head of FEMA. USCIS - the agency for legal immigration - is led by an Acting official who has not been nominated for the post. His top deputy is an Acting Deputy Director. The Border Patrol doesn't even have an 'Acting Director' but rather a 'Senior Official Performing the Duties of the Commissioner.' Immigration and Customs Enforcement has an 'Acting' leader, who has not been nominated for the job. 3. Interior Department. Like the Department of Homeland Security, the Interior Department has a series of agencies with temporary leaders. For example, the Bureau of Land Management doesn't have an 'Acting Director,' but instead, the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Land and Minerals Management, Casey Hammond, is 'exercising the authority' of BLM Director. Under Hammond, there are six top slots in the BLM organizational chart which are listed as 'Acting.' The National Park Service, like the BLM, does not have an 'Acting Director,' but rather a Deputy Director - Dan Smith - who is 'exercising the authority of the Director.' The Park Service has a number of acting officials in other top slots - Acting Deputy Director of Operations, Acting Chief of Staff, and five Acting Assistant Directors for various functions. The Acting Deputy Director, David Vela, was nominated by President Trump in 2018 for the job of Director at the Park Service, but the nomination was never voted on. President Trump has not sent the Senate a new nominee for the Park Service in 2019 as yet. It's the same story at Fish and Wildlife Service. Like the BLM, there is no Acting Director of the Fish and Wildlife Service, but instead, Margaret Everson is the 'Principal Deputy Director Exercising the Authority of the Director.' No one has been nominated to head the agency. 4. In charge, but not nominated. There are plenty of examples in federal departments and agencies of officials being charge, with no nominee in the pipeline before the U.S. Senate, as it's not a question of delays on Capitol Hill for why a top official is not in a certain federal post. Norman Sharpless is the acting head of the Food and Drug Administration; there is no nominee for the position. OSHA - the Occupational Safety and Health Administration - has an Acting leader, Loren Sweatt, but no nominee for the post. One could rattle off many more 'acting' officials in various Undersecretary, Assistant Secretary, and Deputy Secretary jobs in the federal government. How long can people serve in an 'Acting' capacity? The Federal Vacancies Reform Act says 210 days - but there are a lot of ways that can be extended, or the clock can be reset. 5. Office of Personnel Management. This may be one of the most interesting situations where a federal agency has an acting leader. OPM is basically the Human Resources department for the federal government, and the temporary leader in charge is also serving as a top White House official, pressing a plan to entirely get rid of the department. Oddly enough, while the White House is trying to do away with OPM, President Trump nominated Dale Cabaniss to head the agency back in March.
  • With new reports of migrant children being held in facilities with inadequate food, water and sanitation along the Mexican border, Democrats on Friday finally unveiled a $4.5 billion plan to care for the surge of migrants being held by the U.S. Government, but it's not clear if Congress will act before the end of June as lawmakers get ready to leave town for a July Fourth break. The bill from House Democrats was along the same lines as a $4.6 billion measure approved by a Senate panel on Wednesday - but there was no guarantee either measure would be voted on in coming days on Capitol Hill. 'This bill is a sensible compromise that reflects American values by promoting the just and humane treatment of migrants,” said Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-CA). But Republicans said the lengthy delay from House Democrats in introducing a plan was unacceptable, coming over seven weeks after President Donald Trump officially asked for over $4 billion in humanitarian aid. As the weekend arrived, the new bill from Democrats was not yet scheduled for a vote in the full House; in the GOP-led Senate, there was no date certain either for when a vote might take place on the extra money, as outside groups demanded immediate action. The bills from both the House and Senate are only about money - as they don't include any changes to immigration laws demanded by President Trump and GOP lawmakers in the Congress. 'But what the hell, let’s throw $4.5 billion at the problem with lots of perverse incentives to make the crisis worse, make no changes to laws, and wash our hands of it,' tweeted Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX), who has criticized the lack of action by Democrats in the House. 'That’ll do it!' In a series of tweets, Roy said the extra money - while well intentioned - won't do anything to help in the long run. 'This is not the system we should have. This will not secure our nation,' Roy said. But the extra immigration law reforms desired by Roy - and demanded by the President - have not moved ahead in either the House or Senate. Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who chairs the Senate Judiciary Committee, had wanted to press ahead on a bill to deal with immigration law changes, but delayed that on Wednesday, saying he was trying to work out a bipartisan agreement with the White House. It's left both parties pointing the finger of blame at each other, with no guarantee of action even on money for humanitarian needs. With Congress as yet unable to act, the Governor of Texas on Friday authorized the dispatch of 1,000 National Guard soldiers to go help at the border. 'The crisis at our southern border is unlike anything we’ve witnessed before and has put an enormous strain on the existing resources we have in place,' Gov. Greg Abbott said.