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Morning Headlines

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

TRANSPORTATION
MetroCard Swipes Fail 20% of the Time (NY Daily News)
Records from the MTA show there’s a one in five chance your MetroCard will fail when you swipe it. Transit officials say the failures are due to defective, expired or damaged MetroCards. It could also be the way you swipe your card--too fast or too slow can result in an failure.

CRIME
Tickets Fixed For Celebs Including A-Rod (NY Daily News)
Sources tell the Daily News that “star-struck cops” fixed tickets for the Yankees Alex Rodriguez, former team owner George Steinbrenner and Jay-Z’s driver. Three current (though unnamed) City Council members were also extended the courtesy. The news came out during the ongoing grand jury investigation in the Bronx. Some 40 police officers could be indicted in the case.

HEALTH
Cuts to Hospitals Could Include Elimination of Special Victims Unit (NY Daily News)
Right now there are four different teams that counsel rape victims and collect forensic evidence at the city’s 11 hospitals and under the proposed budget plan, the city is considering slashing the program. The Health and Hospitals Corporation says in-house doctors and nurses are trained to deal with such patients, but lawmakers and women’s rights advocates are outraged. Arrests for rape increased 24.5 percent in New York City this year.

OBITS
Reclusive Millionairess Huguette Clark Dies at 104 (NYT)
Having grown up the daughter of a copper baron in a 121-room mansion on Fifth Avenue, Huguette Clark was “almost certainly the last link to New York’s Gilded Age.” In recent years, she was more known as an eccentric because of her desire to live outside the limelight not in one of the many homes she owned, but in hospitals where she collected dolls. Her lawyer--accused in the news media for mishandling Clark’s finances --said, “She died as she wanted, with dignity and privacy.”

BUSINESS
Eight Television Shows Set to Begin Shooting in NYC (WSJ)
This represents a rebound for the city’s film production industry after the long running “Law & Order: Original Flavor” series was cancelled last year. The state legislature approved $420 million in film-production tax credits through 2014.

TRANSPORTATION
Tickets to Cyclists Increased 48% Over Last Year (NY Post)
Officers wrote nearly 14,000 tickets so far this year, compared to more than 9,000 tickets during the same time in 2010. Midtown North saw the biggest increase with police officers writing 10 percent of the 5,666 tickets in all of Manhattan.

CRIME
Female Inmates, Male Guards and Sex Crimes in NY Prisons (City Limits)
City Limits devotes most of its May/June issue to an investigation of sex crimes in New York state’s prisons. Deputy Editor Kelly Virella was on the Brian Lehrer Show to talk about the investigation earlier this month.

CITY
Survey Hints At Census Undercount (NYT)
The New York Times did an “informal house-to-house” survey of three blocks the Census Bureau said were vacant and found residents. The city has been discounting the Census’s count, saying it overlooked immigrant neighborhoods like East Elmhurst and Jackson Heights in Queens and Sunset Park, Bay Ridge and Bensonhurst in Brooklyn.

BUSINESS
Report: City’s Job Program Lacks Coordination (Crain’s)
A report coordinated by Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott and two deputy mayors shows over a dozen city agencies and programs assisting job seekers lack an “overarching city goal or mission” tying them together. Walcott and Deputy Mayors Linda Gibbs and Robert Steel are launching a new initiative to streamline the programs. Nearly 500,000 New Yorkers received job assistance last year.

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