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Local Newscast: March 4, 2021

MANIRAHO: From Columbia Radio News, in New York, I’m Karen Maniraho.

MANIRAHO: Governor Andrew Cuomo has refused to resign amid allegations of sexual harassment. Cuomo said in a press conference that he was embarrassed by the allegations. He apologized and said if he made anyone feel uncomfortable, it was unintentional.

CUOMO: But this is what I want you to know, and I want you to know this from me directly - I never touched anyone inappropriately.

MANIRAHO: At least three women, including two former employees, have come forward with allegations of sexual misconduct by the Governor. The Attorney General will review the allegations in an independent investigation.

MANIRAHO: New York is planning to launch a new COVID passport app. The Excelsior Pass was developed in partnership with IBM. It’s similar to a mobile boarding pass. It will store an encrypted, digital copy of COVID test results, or proof of vaccination. The app was designed for use at indoor and outdoor venues. It has already been tested twice, at Madison Square Garden and Barclays Center.

Protestors Chanting: Save Jing Fong, Protect Chinatown. Save Jing Fong, Protect Chinatown.

MANIRAHO: Union workers in Chinatown gathered on Tuesday to protest the closing of the historic Jing Fong dining hall. They want the landlord, Alex Chu, to let the restaurant stay open past March 7, when it is required to shift to takeout and delivery. They say at least 100 workers will lose their jobs if the restaurant closes its doors. Alex Chu says Jing Fong hasn’t paid rent in 12 months. Jing Fong has been one of the largest and most recognizable dining rooms in New York City’s Chinatown since it was opened in 1978.

MANIRAHO: All five New York City District Attorneys are pushing for harsher punishments for spitting on subways. Right now, it’s a violation, punishable with a fine. But prosecutors want the act treated as a misdemeanor, with sentences of up to a year in jail. This follows calls from eight MTA unions for changes to the law.

For Columbia Radio News, I’m Karen Maniraho.


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