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Thursday, June 16, 2011

CRIME
In the Wake of Bronx Ticket Fixing Investigation, Police Watch Their Backs (NYT)
A new policy in the Bronx requires police officers to turn any traffic tickets into their desk sergeants. But many officers are taking things a step further. They stand to watch the sergeant scan the ticket into the system and then note the date and time of the scan in their memo books. That way they have proof a ticket didn’t disappear on their watch. The ongoing investigation could ensnare as many as 40 officers.

 

POLITICS
NJ Lawmaker Pushes for Gay Marriage Bill (Star-Ledger)
The state’s only openly gay lawmaker, Assemblyman Reed Gusciora proposed a bill legalizing gay marriage. He says, “They’re talking about it in New York. Why aren’t we talking about it in New Jersey.” A similar measure was defeated in the Senate in January 2010 and Gov. Chris Christie doesn’t support gay marriage.


URBAN WILDLIFE
Goose: It’s What’s For Dinner (WSJ)
New York City’s department of environmental protection confirms that if the U.S. Department of Agriculture ends up having to round up excess geese this year, they will be processed and distributed to food banks and shelters in Pennsylvania. The USDA is right now counting the geese to see if it will have to result to culling the population. Animal advocates have long spoken out against the culls and news that the goose meat might be donated hasn’t appeased them. NPR reporter Bonny Wolf has tips on how to cook a goose.

INFRASTRUCTURE
Yet Another Push to Revitalize South Street Seaport (Gotham Gazette)
The South Street Seaport has been the focus of various redevelopment projects since the 1970s, but 40 years later, those efforts have been far from successful. Howard Hughes Corp., is now tackling the task. Community Board chair Julie Menin says the area needs more retail and a park space or a community center.

CRIME
Report: NJ Dept. of Corrections Too Lenient on Halfway Homes (NY Magazine)
New Jersey spends $65 million a year on privately run halfway homes, but a recent report from the state comptroller reveals a system rife with inmate escapes, shoddy buildings and lax inspections. The Department of Corrections acknowledges problems, but says the issues cited in the report have been addressed with new contracts signed this year.

TRANSPORTATION
African-American City Councilman Can’t Hail a Cab (NY Post)
Queens Councilman James Sanders says he waited for 45 minutes and was turned down by as many as 20 cabbies as he tried to hail a cab downtown to take his pregnant daughter to Yonkers. He was forced to settle for a livery cab, which he claims cost $25 more than a cab would have been. A bill currently being considered by the council would raise the fine for not picking up passengers from $350 to $500.

ENERGY
New York City is Latest to Launch Solar Map of Buildings (Reuters)
An interactive map that shows building owners how much sunlight hits their roofs goes live in New York City today. When San Francisco rolled out a similar map in 2008, the use of photovoltaic technology tripled over the course of three years.

CULTURE
Church of Latter Day Saints Tries to Capitalize on “Book of Mormon” (NY Post)
The Mormon Church is buying up billboards in Times Square and ad space in and out of taxis in hopes the popular Tony-winning musical might lead some to look into the religion.

CULTURE
Restaurants: Please Stop Taking Pictures of Your Food (New York Magazine)
Momofuku Ko and Chef’s Table at Brooklyn Fare are among the New York City restaurants who ban their diners from taking pictures of their meals. Their argument: the amateur food critics disturb other diners and the darky, murky photos are rarely flattering to their elaborately prepared dishes. The Grub Street writer takes up their cause: “I know I am not alone in being interrupted all day by phone calls, text messages, and incoming e-mails … I just want a glass of wine, something delicious to eat, a little eye contact, enough time to just enjoy myself.”

OPINION
Editorial: Mayor Bloomberg Lacks Guts To Do What It Takes to Fix Failing Schools (NY Post)
The Post editorial board takes on Bloomberg’s goal to become the “Education Mayor.” When confronted with push back from the teachers’ unions, the mayor has “folded like a beach chair” every time, it writes. Among his many failures, according to the board, are the “readiness” rates (for work or college) of students graduating from high school, getting rid of “last in, first out,” and negotiating with the unions to avoid laying off 4,100 teachers by dipping into a health insurance fund.

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