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Sound Bites: In appeal, Santos ordered to reveal bond cosigners

Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., leaves a House GOP conference meeting on Capitol Hill on Jan. 25, 2023.
Andrew Harnik
Rep. George Santos, R-N.Y., leaves a House GOP conference meeting on Capitol Hill on Jan. 25, 2023.

Good morning. A federal judge ordered U.S. Rep. George Santos (R-NY) to reveal the names of his family members who helped him post bail in a criminal case. The bond documents will be unsealed on Thursday.

News outlets, including NPR, called for the New York federal court to order Santos to reveal the identities of the cosigners of a $500,000 bond. Cosigner names are typically disclosed for the public record in criminal cases, but Santos’ attorney tried to keep the identities hidden, warning they would receive harassment. 

Santos pleaded not guilty in May to wire fraud, money laundering, theft of public funds and making false statements to the House of Representatives.

He’s scheduled to appear in court on June 30. If his cosigners withdraw, Santos will need to post bail, or be taken into federal custody.

Here’s a bite-sized look at what else we are hearing:

The Federal Emergency Management Agency will reimburse over $125 million to Connecticut for buying and distributing personal protective equipment during the pandemic. The state Department of Correction distributed 78 million gloves, masks and other items during the first year of COVID-19. In total, FEMA has provided the state with over $813 million in Public Assistance Grants to reimburse pandemic expenses.

Voters rejected a second proposed budget for Wainscott schools on eastern Long Island.  The tiny school district might struggle to provide proper education services after the student population jumped to a record high of 92 students. Most of the $6 million budget would have covered student tuition costs, transportation and special education services. Instead, the school will seek state financial relief through an increased tax levy.

The Connecticut Department of Transportation is seeking volunteers for a mileage use fee study. Conducted by the Eastern Transportation Coalition, the study will determine the feasibility of replacing gas taxes. It’s in response to electric cars becoming more prominent throughout the state, which has generated less gas tax revenue and fewer funds for road and bridge maintenance.

Norwich and New London City Council members were criticized for not canceling meetings for Juneteenth. Monday was the first Juneteenth recognized as a state holiday, commemorating the end of slavery in 1865. However, City Council members were still called in for work despite other towns and cities closing for the holiday. Norwich became the first city in Connecticut to hold a Juneteenth celebration in 1989.

New York’s electricity grid will connect Long Island’s offshore wind projects with the rest of the state. This project, Propel Alternate Solution 5, will bury three underground transmission cables under Long Island Sound to provide 3,000 megawatts of wind energy to the state. New York has a goal to generate 9,000 megawatts by 2035. The project is expected to be complete by May 2030 and will cost an estimated $3.26 billion.

Lights outside Connecticut state buildings will be shut off at night to protect birds, according to a law signed by Governor Ned Lamont. The “Lights Out” law requires all state buildings to turn off or dim all non-essential outdoor lights after 11 p.m. until 6 a.m. year-round. Outdoor lights often disrupt nighttime bird migratory patterns which use light from the moon and stars to navigate. Artificial lights cause many birds to crash into buildings.

The New York State Assembly approved a bill to protect abortion and reproductive health service providers using out-of-state telehealth services. The bill specifically protects reproductive health providers from litigation from other states where abortion services are illegal. Since Roe v. Wade was overturned in 2022, people from states from across the country have sought reproductive help from New York as a sanctuary state for abortion access.

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Eric Warner is a news fellow at WSHU.