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Tuesday, August 02, 2011

WNYC

POLICY
In Neighborhood That’s Diverse, a Push for Signs to Be Less So (NYT)
Flushing Councilmember Peter Koo is pushing for a new law that would require store front signs of local businesses to be at least 60% English. He says the influx of Chinese, Japanese and Taiwanese languages deters those who do not speak the language from visiting the neighborhoods. But opponents say most signs are already contain English, and say it would clash with values from their native countries.

POLICY
Among Conservative Rabbis, a Wide Disagreement Over Same-Sex Marriage (NYT)
Same-sex marriage is legal in New York, but rabbis in the city have mixed feelings on the change. Some rabbis support the law and have already conducted same sex marriages in their synagogues, while others say they won’t officiate same-sex marriages. Regardless, the law is forcing rabbis across the state to address the situation directly.

LABOR
Hundreds of Hardhats Laid Off, Others Halt Work at World Trade Center Over Wages and Scabs (NY Daily News)
Hundreds of unionized concrete workers walked off their jobs yesterday to protest the use of nonunion labor and work stoppage over wages. This comes one month after their contracts expired. Work did not stop on the 9/11 Memorial but work slowed on the Freedom Tower, as well as other construction sites across the city.

EDUCATION
No Difference on Standardized Tests from Elite City High Schools (NY Post)
A study from the National Bureau of Economic Research found that students at top city schools like Stuyvesant, Bronx Science and Brooklyn Tech performed no better than smart students at other public schools.

JUSTICE
Designer’s Mugging Death Ruled a Homicide (DNAinfo)
Gerald Abramovitz, a designer who’s work is part of the permanent collection at MOMA, was mugged on the Upper West Side in mid-June. He died three weeks later and now the Medical Examiner is ruling his death a homicide. An autopsy shows Abramovitz died of cerebral hematoma--or bleeding in the brain--that resulted from blunt impact injuries. His killer is unknown.

CULTURE
Mayor Wants Grades for Food Trucks Too (WSJ)
The city’s Health Department isn’t too sure about the idea.

CULTURE
Second Avenue Subway Worker Serenades Upper East Siders (NY Post)
Local 40 Ironworker Gary Russo is trying to ease the headaches of Upper East Side residents tired of the Second Avenue Subway construction that’s causing disturbances in the neighborhood. Residents say it's brought a little cheer to an otherwise disruptive situation.

CULTURE
The Brooklyn Philharmonic is Back (Brooklyn Paper)
It’s new season boasts special guests like Mos Def, David T. Little and Sufjan Stevens. Like many performance arts organizations throughout the country, the philharmonic faced fiscal challenges that eventually forced it to cancel its 2009 and 2010 seasons. The group plans to perform all over the borough.

EDUCATION
Staten Island Parents: Charter School Recruits Handicap Kids but Doesn't Provide for Special Needs (NY Daily News)
Staten Island parents say a charter school aimed at helping children with special needs has not delivered on its promise. More than 30 percent of students enrolled at the John Lavelle Preparatory Charter School, in Bloomfield, have special needs. Parents say the school doesn’t have a counselor, mental health clinic or mental health director, despite claims they would provide these services.

OPINION
President Obama Needs A Dose of Chris Christie (Star-Ledger)
Congressional leaders and President Obama were finally able to come to an agreement over the debt ceiling, but according to Star-Ledger Columnist, Tom Moran, Republicans came out on top.  He says that’s because President Obama played it too safe. Maybe, he writes, Obama could use a bit of New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s aggressive character?

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