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Sexually Transmitted Diseases on the Rise Uptown (Uptowner)
Ali Leskowitz reports: “Central and East Harlem rank first and second in Manhattan, respectively, in cases of male and female chlamydia and female gonorrhea in 15-to 34-year-olds. Central Harlem’s rates of male chlamydia and gonorrhea for both sexes are the highest in all of New York City. Washington Heights follows with Manhattan’s third highest rate of female chlamydia and gonorrhea, and ranks fourth for cases of male chlamydia and gonorrhea, behind Chelsea.”



Ray Kelly Heckled for Making NYC Safe for ‘White Heterosexual Males’ (Gothamist)
Gothamist offers up a video of a member of the group “Stop Stop and Frisk” heckling the police commissioner. The man yells: “I have lived in this city for 6 years and I have never been stopped and frisked. 700,000 black and Latino males stopped and frisked every year. Thank you sir, we can do better! 1 million Black and Latino males next year!"

Nurses Threaten Christmas Strikes at 4 NYC Hospitals (Crain’s)
Barbara Benson reports: “Unionized nurses at four of New York City's biggest hospitals may have a Christmas surprise for management: coordinated strikes during the holiday season, designed to maximize sympathy for the nurses' bargaining stand during unusually tough contract negotiations.”

City’s Arcade Culture Makes New Play in Brooklyn (Brooklyn Bureau)
Rodrigo Carreno reports: “Next Level is re-imagining what an arcade is in the 21st century. Instead of having blocks of stand alone machines, side by side, the emphasis is on interactive games that allow for fast-paced competition.”

Authorities Bust Strip Club Operation That Illegally Employed Hundreds (NY1)
Dean Meminger reports: “Early morning raids on nine strip clubs, including Gallagher's in Queens and the Cheetah's Gentlemen's Club in Midtown, landed 25 people in handcuffs Wednesday. Homeland Security investigators say members of the Gambino and Bonanno crime families along with Russian mobsters illegally brought hundreds of women from Russia and Eastern Europe to the U.S. to dance and strip in New York clubs.”

N.J. Workers Benefit the Most from Temporary Cut in Payroll Taxes (AP)
The Associated Press reports: “An analysis shows the average worker in New Jersey saved about $872, or 22 percent more than the national average because the state has some of the nation's highest paid workers.”

Lack of Black Males Leads to Struggle Within Urban Big Brothers Programs (Star-Ledger)
Barry Carter writes about the fact that while 38% of the boys waiting for a mentor through the Big Brothers Big Sisters Program are black, only 14% of the mentors are. “Executive Director Carlos Lejnieks says the goal is to have a responsible adult in the life of every child, but he does understand the impact a man of color can have on child living in communities like Newark, Jersey City and Elizabeth.”

2011 is Wettest in N.J. History (Star-Ledger)
Stephen Stirling reports: “It only took 11 months, but 2011 is now the wettest year in New Jersey history after Tuesday’s rains broke yet another record in an historic year for Garden State weather. Although the year’s total precipitation will almost certainly climb higher in the coming weeks, the damage of the saturating year has largely already been seen.”

Port Authority Changes Reason for Toll Hike (AP)
The Associated Press reports: “Remember this summer's bridge and tunnel toll increases that were needed to help pay for redeveloping the World Trade Center? It looks like the extra money isn't going there after all.
In legal filings this month in response to a lawsuit, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey now says none of the money from the toll increases will be used for the World Trade Center.”

State’s Testing Chief Resigns (WSJ)
Lisa Fleisher reports: “The head of testing at the New York State Education Department abruptly resigned Monday after top officials said the department's plans to implement tests that would take much longer were released too soon. David Abrams, who was assistant commissioner for the Office of Standards, Assessment and Reporting for eight years, oversaw the testing program at a time when rapidly rising scores led the department to make tests more rigorous and to raise the bar for passing.”

Told to Diversify, Dock Union Offers a Nearly All-White Retort (NYT)
Patrick McGeehan reports: “What part of diversity don’t you understand? That essentially was the question that visibly irritated members of the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor asked at a hearing in Lower Manhattan on Tuesday morning. They wanted to know why the shipping companies that operate in the ports of New York and New Jersey could not find a single black, Hispanic or Asian person who could fill a stevedore’s job.”

Quiet Aide to Liu Helped Build Donor Base Now Under Scrutiny (NYT)
David Chen and Raymond Hernandez report: “Mei-Hua Ru quietly wields considerable power in the city, having guided Comptroller John C. Liu’s rise from an obscure councilman 10 years ago to a major political force today.” Meanwhile, Liu is under fire from stakeholders in the city’s pension system because of his hiring of former MF Global executive Kevin Davis. Michael Howard Saul reports Davis, “was made head of commodities in the comptroller's Bureau of Asset Management, which helps advise the city's five public pension funds on their combined $120 billion in assets.”

City Council Members Get Human Rights Report Cards (Metrofocus)
Bridget Leahy reports: “The Human Rights Project at the Urban Justice Center recently released its annual Human Rights Report Card assessing New York City Council members’ involvement in Human Rights legislation. The report used letter grades A through F to measure the extent to which they felt Council members had responded to some of the city’s most critical social and economic inequities.”

GOP Candidate Newt Gingrich Coming to Staten Island (NY Daily News)
Jonathan Lemire and Alison Gendar report: “Move over Des Moines — it's Tottenville's time on the political stage. Foreshadowing the upcoming Republican caucus in Iowa, Newt Gingrich will appear on Staten Island Saturday — and he's already being slammed by local Mitt Romney backers.”

Taxi Commission Mulls Putting Ads On Receipts (NY Post)
Jennifer Fermino reports: “Even your taxi receipt isn’t safe from advertisements.
City officials want to put ads on the back of yellow cab receipts, a change that would resize the little white slips into larger sheets of paper the size of grocery-store tabs. The Taxi & Limousine Commission will take up the issue at a public hearing on Jan. 19, possibly voting on the change as early as that day.”

Gucci Masters Horse Competition Coming to Brooklyn’s Barclays Center (WSJ)

Sophia Hollander reports: “The Barclays Center will host the new elite show-jumping competition in 2013, drawing the world's top 30 riders to compete for $1 million in prize money, officials were scheduled to announce on Thursday in Paris. Along with events in Paris and Hong Kong, which will debut its competition next March, the New York Masters will complete what officials dubbed a "triple crown" of the sport, drawing Olympic-level competition.”