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Federal Bill Would Cut TCAT Funding $200,000 Annually

Correction appended 

An amendment to a federal highway bill that passed the United States House of Representatives Wednesday proposes to cut funding for public transit and would slash 12 percent of the federal portion of TCAT funding, or $207,000 annually, according to a TCAT press release. In 2013, 10.6 percent of the TCAT’s annual budget came from federal funds, according to its website. TCAT workers plan to protest the bill along with other transit agencies in the state, according to the release. According to The Syracuse Post-Standard, the bill would cut $820 million over the course of six years statewide. New York state and New Jersey currently receives $140 million a year from the federal government for public transportation.

MYRICK '09

Mayor Svante Myrick ’09 Secures Second Term

Svante Myrick ’09 was reelected to a second four-year term as mayor of the City of Ithaca Tuesday, beating write-in candidate Phoebe Brown by a margin of 1,779 votes to 228. Brown launched a write-in campaign against Myrick in October, even as she acknowledged the unlikeliness of winning.  Currently a community outreach liaison for the Cayuga Medical Center’s Center for Healthy Living, Brown said she initiated the campaign to foster dialogue. In a social media post Wednesday night, Myrick expressed joy over his reelection. “With 89 percent of the vote I’ve been reelected Mayor of the City of Ithaca,” Myrick said. “Thank you for all of your support!”
Myrick was first elected City of Ithaca mayor in 2011, having served as an alderperson on the Common Council prior.

MYRICK '09

Mayor Svante Myrick ’09 Joins Clinton Campaign

Presidential candidate and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced that Mayor Svante Myrick ’09 is part of a team of 100 New Yorkers that will lead Clinton’s campaign in the state, according to The Syracuse Post-Standard. Myrick is accompanied on the Hillary for New York Leadership Council by the mayor of Syracuse, Stephanie Miner, and other high-profile officials such as Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) and U.S. Senators Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.). Cuomo and Miner have both made statements endorsing Clinton, according to The Post-Standard and the Observer. On his Facebook page, Myrick said he would also be endorsing Clinton because he believes that she is “the most qualified candidate for president and the best bet to build upon Barack Obama’s transformational presidency.”
“I believe that her platform will yield progressive policy successes — and I believe strongly in the power of the pioneering nature of her candidacy,” Myrick wrote. He added that he believes a Clinton presidency would make strides for women in America today.

David Skorton Formally Installed as 13th Smithsonian Secretary

President Emeritus David Skorton was officially installed as the Smithsonian Institution’s 13th secretary in a ceremony Monday afternoon. The ceremony, live-streamed on the Smithsonian’s website, marks the official beginning of his role as secretary, though he assumed his duties on July 1. Though freshly minted in his role, Skorton has already begun to make waves with comments he made in relation to the public perception of the Smithsonian, particularly that he does not appreciate when people refer to it as “The Nation’s Attic,” according to The Associated Press. “I think about an attic as somewhere that you sort of put stuff that you used to be interested in and might be interested in again someday. You don’t know for sure,” Skorton said, according to The Associated Press.

Friends of Jones ’15, Forensic Pathologist Testify in Cayea Trial

With testimony underway for the murder trial of Benjamin Cayea, which began Friday morning, Glenna Dunaway, Shannon Jones’s ’15 psychotherapist, brought to light numerous incidents of violence between Cayea and Jones. Dunaway said Jones had spoken to her about multiple altercations, including a May 2014 incident where Jones said Cayea choked her, according to The Ithaca Journal. Additionally, James Terzian, a forensic pathologist, testified that Jones’ death was a homicide, according to The Ithaca Voice. Cayea is on trial for the second degree murder of Jones last November. In the opening arguments, the defense said there “was no question” that Cayea caused Jones’ death by asphyxiation in her Cayuga Heights apartment, but urged the jury to focus on “the question of intent.”
Dunaway testified that she had been counseling Jones for two years before her death, according to The Journal.

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Physics Professor Peter Lepage Wins Sakurai Prize

The American Physical Society announced that Prof. Peter Lepage, physics, will be the recipient of the 2016 J.J. Sakurai Prize for his research in quantum field theory, according to the University. The award, which recognizes work in Lepage’s specific field, comes with $10,000. The Sakurai prize has been awarded for 30 years. Lepage is the first Cornellian to receive it since Prof. Emeritus Toichiro Kinoshita, physics, won it in 1990. Lepage and his team have been working extensively on creating new ways of speeding and streamlining the process of simulating the ways protons, neutrons and other particles interact with each other by using quarks and gluons, in a field called quantum chromodynamics, according to the University.

Police Issue Crime Alerts After Stalking, Burglary

Police issued crime alerts to the Cornell community after reports of a stalking incident Wednesday night and burglary with an attempted sex crime early Sunday morning. A student who was walking home on Campus Road near the intersection of West Avenue around 1:30 a.m. said an unfamiliar man drove up beside her and asked if he could give her a ride home. After she refused to get in his vehicle, he continued to pressure her. The student then asked him to leave her alone, but he continued to follow her, police say. The student described the driver of the vehicle — a silver Lexus SUV — as being around 40 years of age and having dark, short hair, according to police.