NCAE HAS RELEASED LIST OF DEMANDS BEFORE MAY 1 RALLY: Looking forward, the NCAE has identified the following priorities for this year's rally on May 1: Provide enough school librarians, psychologists, social workers, counselors, nurses, and other health professionals to meet national professional-to-student standards. Provide a $15 minimum wage for all school personnel, a 5 percent raise for all ESPs (non-certified staff), teachers, administrators, and a 5 percent cost-of-living adjustment for retirees. Expand Medicaid. Reinstate state retiree health benefits eliminated by the General Assembly in 2017. Restore advanced degree compensation stripped by the General Assembly in 2013.
AMONG VARIOUS BUDGET PROPOSALS IS EFFORT TO BLOCK FUTURE TEACHER RALLIES: Key state budget proposals began rolling out Friday morning, giving the public an initial look at how legislators plan to address education, pollution, public safety and other issues in the next two years. People who use Uber or Lyft may soon have to pay new taxes on their fares, under one budget provision. Another part of the budget appears aimed at stopping teachers from marching en masse at the legislature on school days, as they did last year and are planning to do again next week. Other parts of the budget are aimed at tackling projects such as cutting down the state’s backlog of untested rape kits, and trying to identify potentially dangerous chemicals in our rivers and lakes. One major topic that wasn’t in the budget documents Friday was what raises might be in the works for state employees like teachers, state troopers and others. Those details won’t be released until next week.
TWEETS BY CANADIAN RIGHT-WINGER SPURRED NY TEENS TO PLOT ATTACK ON ISLAMBERG: Vetromile attended community college with Colaneri before dropping out in 2017. By then, he was fully engaged in online conversations about immigrants living in the U.S. illegally, gun rights and Trump. Over time, his statements became increasingly militant. "We need a revolution now!" he tweeted in January, replying to a thread warning of a coming "war" over gun ownership. Vetromile directed some of his strongest statements at Muslims. Tweets from the Canadian account, belonging to one Mike Allen, seemed to push that button. In July 2017, Allen tweeted "Somali Muslims take over Tennessee town and force absolute HELL on terrified Christians." Vetromile replied: "@realDonaldTrump please do something about this!" A few months later, Allen tweeted: "Czech politicians vote to let citizens carry guns, shoot Muslim terrorists on sight." Vetromile's response: "We need this here!"
CALIFORNIA SYNAGOGUE SHOOTER HAD ALSO SET FIRE AT MOSQUE: Earnest, who is in custody, is accused of killing one woman and wounding three other people in a shooting during Passover services at the Chabad of Poway. His actions appear to have been revealed in an open letter, published on the internet forum 8chan and attributed to him. The forum is a photo-based website where people can create and moderate their own boards. Because of its limited rules, it is sometimes used anonymously by members of the far-right, white nationalist movement. The missive is riddled with strong language, hate speech and anti-Semitic epithets. In it, the author paints himself as a martyr for white people and writes that he hates “anyone who seeks the destruction of my race.” He also claims to have previously set fire to an Escondido mosque, and that he did so in support of accused New Zealand Christchurch shooter Brenton Tarrant. Tarrant, he says, was the catalyst for his actions. “I am a testament to the fact that literally anyone can do this,” he wrote. “If you told me even 6 months ago that I would do this I would have been surprised.”
TRUMP'S OPPOSITION TO MORE PUERTO RICO FUNDING IS BLOCKING RELIEF BILL: Congress last passed a broad disaster relief package in February 2018, when lawmakers slipped nearly $90 billion into a wide-ranging spending agreement. In the year since, record-breaking natural disasters have ravaged the country: wildfires in California, hurricanes in Georgia, Alabama and the Carolinas, and floods across Iowa, Nebraska and much of the rest of the Midwest. But efforts to wrangle a relief package through Congress — typically a seamless feat of bipartisanship — have repeatedly failed, not because senators do not want to help people like Mr. Cohen, some of whom cannot yet reach their land, but because President Trump does not want to give more money to Puerto Rico. Democrats are not giving up their effort to increase aid to the island, a United States territory devastated by hurricanes in 2017, as Democratic senators push to match what their House counterparts have already approved. But Senate Republicans, wary of challenging Mr. Trump, say they have acquiesced enough — and unlike the states covered in the package, Puerto Rico has already received some financial aid.