Regional Briefs – October 29, 2015

Cuomo: Too Soon to Decide If Backing de Blasio for 2017

KANSAS CITY, MO. – Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday it was “way premature” to discuss endorsing Mayor Bill de Blasio’s reelection, the New York Post reported. The pair’s 20-year friendship has soured over the past year. De Blasio is holding his first 2017 fundraiser on Thursday.

New Jersey Natural Gas Cuts Winter Rates

WALL TOWNSHIP, N.J. – New Jersey Natural Gas customers will pay 28 percent less this winter due to a decline in wholesale prices, The Associated Press reported. Customers will receive an average credit of $166 between Nov. 1 and Feb. 29, or $25 more than expected.

Alarms Didn’t Sound During Passaic Apartment Fire

PASSAIC, N.J. – Fire alarms didn’t sound during a blaze that ripped through a Passaic apartment building last week, displacing hundreds, NJ.com reported. A preliminary investigation showed the Oct. 21 fire was accidental. The three injured firefighters are in good condition.

NY to Award Flags to Families Of Fallen Police Officers

ALBANY – The flags that fly at half-staff at the Capitol in Albany when a police officer is killed will now be given to the officer’s next of kin, after Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed the provision into law on Monday. Until now, only families of military members received the flags.

Band Leader Arrested For Duct-Taping Boy’s Mouth

NEW YORK – The leader of a school marching band in Brooklyn was arrested Tuesday for duct-taping the mouth of a 9-year-old student the day before, The Associated Press reported. Kenyatte Hughes, 39, led the East New York band for more than a decade. The tape left marks and a cut to the boy’s lip.

Student Punished for ‘ISIS’ Caption on Photo of Muslim

WOODBRIDGE, N.J. – A high school student who captioned “ISIS” on photos of a female Muslim student wearing a head scarf was disciplined and cellphones banned from the cafeteria, The Associated Press reported. The school superintendent on Wednesday called the June post on Saira Ali “hateful.”