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"Severe Thunderstorm Watch" Severe Thunderstorm Watch 415 remains in effect until 800 PM EDT NY . New York counties included are Bronx Columbia Dutchess Greene Kings Nassau New York Orange Putnam Queens Richmond Rockland Suffolk Sullivan Ulster Westchester , "Heat Advisory" ...Heat advisory remains in effect until 8 PM EDT this evening... * heat index values...around 100 due to temperatures around 90 and dewpoints in the lower 70s. * Timing...highest heat indices late this afternoon. * Impacts...the combination of the heat and humidity will increase the risk for heat related health issues...especially for the elderly...those with chronic health problems such as lung and heart disease...those working outdoors...and other heat sensitive groups of people. Precautionary/preparedness actions... A heat advisory is issued when the combination of heat and humidity is expected to make it feel like it is 100 to 104 degrees for two consecutive hours. To reduce risk during outdoor work the occupational safety and health administration recommends scheduling frequent rest breaks in shaded or air conditioned environments. Anyone overcome by heat should be moved to a cool and shaded location. Heat stroke is an emergency...call 9 1 1. , "Air Quality Alert" ...Air quality alert in effect from 11 am to 11 PM EDT Monday... The New York state department of environmental conservation has issued an air quality health advisory for the following areas... New York City...all of Long Island...and Westchester and Rockland counties. Air quality levels in outdoor air are predicted to be greater than an air quality index value of 100 for the pollutant of ozone. When pollution levels are elevated...the New York state department of health recommends that individuals consider limiting strenuous outdoor physical activity to reduce the risk of adverse health effects. People who may be especially sensitive to the effects of elevated levels of pollutants include the very Young...and those with pre-existing respiratory problems such as asthma or heart disease. Those with symptoms should consider consulting their personal physician. A toll free air quality hotline has been established so New York residents can stay informed on the air quality situation. The toll free number is 1 800 5 3 5, 1 3 4 5. 1053 am EDT Mon Jul 25 2016 ...Air quality alert in effect from 11 am to 11 PM EDT Monday... The New York state department of environmental conservation has issued an air quality health advisory for the following areas... New York City...all of Long Island...and Westchester and Rockland counties. Air quality levels in outdoor air are predicted to be greater than an air quality index value of 100 for the pollutant of ozone. When pollution levels are elevated...the New York state department of health recommends that individuals consider limiting strenuous outdoor physical activity to reduce the risk of adverse health effects. People who may be especially sensitive to the effects of elevated levels of pollutants include the very Young...and those with pre-existing respiratory problems such as asthma or heart disease. Those with symptoms should consider consulting their personal physician. A toll free air quality hotline has been established so New York residents can stay informed on the air quality situation. The toll free number is 1 800 5 3 5, 1 3 4 5. -- Monday Jul.25 16,05:48 PM

ASPCA Concerned Over Impact of Government Shutdown on Animal Welfare

Animal rights advocates worried about lack of inspections and regulation.

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The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is concerned that the lack of government regulation over puppy mills and other animal welfare centers and departments may lead to an increase in animal cruelty.

According to the ASPCA, the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is not able to perform all of its duties under the Animal Welfare Act (AWA). This includes puppy mill inspections, zoo, circus and hunting regulations among other things.

“With limited resources and less-than-vigorous enforcement under ordinary circumstances, we know that the shutdown is a terrible blow to dogs in puppy mills,” said Cori Menkin, Senior Director, ASPCA Puppy Mills Campaign. “Think of the mills that were scheduled for a follow-up inspection today to make sure serious issues had been resolved.”

However, puppies are not the only animals being affected. The USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service – a department that enforces the Horse Protection Act – is not able to do its duty of preventing abuse towards horses.

Additionally, the Food Safety and Inspection Service will not be able to uphold the Humane Methods of Slaughter Act during the government shutdown. This act helps to ensure that all animals bred for meat production are slaughtered in a humane fashion.

All National Wildlife Refuges are also currently shutdown. All hunting and trapping on these lands is prohibited during the shutdown. Federal law enforcement will be patrolling these areas for illegal hunting.

The AWA also enforces standards for care of animals being used in laboratories. Labs using these animals are still being maintained by employees, but there is no one there to make sure they are meeting the required ethical treatments set by this act.

While the government shutdown continues, oversight of animal welfare will continue to suffer.
With over 800,000 people out of work due to the shutdown, the ASPCA said that we still cannot overlook the effect it is having on our nation's animals.

[Source: ASPCA]