Boston University overcame two bids to prevent a downtown site from studying some of the world’s deadliest biological agents, the Boston Herald reports.
The Boston City Council on Wednesday voted down a proposal to prohibit locations in the city from carrying out “Biosafety Level 4” studies, which can involve diseases for which there are no known cures. The measure targeted the National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories, a 6-year-old site where Boston University wants to conduct such research.
The chief proponent of the research ban described the council’s 8-5 decision as a letdown.
“Many other surrounding communities have banned [Biosafety] Level 4 research to protect their residents from a potential risk,” said Councilor Charles Yancey, who submitted an ordinance to prohibit the sensitive scientific efforts.
“I don’t believe that the city of Boston is prepared to deal with an emergency resulting from the release of a pathogen,” he said.
Meanwhile, a university administrator praised the council’s decision.
“At the end of the day it was the safety measures and the security of the building that carried the vote,” Michelle Consalvo, assistant vice president for government and community affairs, said in the school publication BU Today.
Also on Wednesday, a state court rejected a local challenge to a National Institutes of Health finding that the laboratory constitutes a relatively insignificant hazard to the surrounding area.
“When assessing the risk … the report assumed that in each scenario, everything that could go wrong would go wrong,” Suffolk County Superior Court Judge Janet Sanders wrote in her ruling. “It then calculated the risk that this could happen using a specific methodology.”
The laboratory must still obtain authorization from the Boston Public Health Commission to conduct Biosafety Level 4 research.
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With three days until the first debate, the polls are coming fast and furious. The latest round:
- An Associated Press/Gfk poll of registered voters found very few voters committed, with Clinton leading Trump, 37% to 29%, and Gary Johnson at 7%.
- A McClatchy-Marist poll gave Clinton a six-point edge, 45% to 39%, in a four-way ballot test. Johnson pulls 10% support, with Jill Stein at 4%.
- Rasmussen, which has drawn criticism for continually showing Donald Trump doing much better than he does in other polls, is at it again. A new survey gives Trump a five-point lead, 44%-39%.
In contrast to Hillary Clinton's meticulous debate practice sessions, Donald Trump "is largely shunning traditional debate preparations, but has been watching video of…Clinton’s best and worst debate moments, looking for her vulnerabilities.” Trump “has paid only cursory attention to briefing materials. He has refused to use lecterns in mock debate sessions despite the urging of his advisers. He prefers spitballing ideas with his team rather than honing them into crisp, two-minute answers.”
Donald Trump "is on the precipice of becoming the only major-party presidential candidate this century not to reach out to millions of American voters whose dominant, first or just preferred language is Spanish. Trump has not only failed to buy any Spanish-language television or radio ads, he so far has avoided even offering a translation of his website into Spanish, breaking with two decades of bipartisan tradition."
Bill and Hillary Clinton have purchased the home next door to their primary residence in tony Chappaqua, New York, for $1.16 million. "By purchasing the new home, the Clinton's now own the entire cul-de-sac at the end of the road in the leafy New York suburb. The purchase makes it easier for the United States Secret Service to protect the former president and possible future commander in chief."