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Morning Headlines | Selected by the WNYC News Hub

Friday, August 10, 2012

checkbook (J Ridgeway Photography/flickr)

Must-reads headlines from around the city, curated by the WNYC Newsroom.

HEALTH
Health Insurer Refunds May Stall in Employers’ Hands (NYT)
Nina Bernstein reports: “It was the great health insurance giveback: $1.1 billion in premiums returned to policyholders under the Affordable Care Act. But while many people who buy their own insurance found a check in the mail last week, millions insured through employers are still wondering what is happening with the money.”

ENVIRONMENT
At Hearing, Customers Complain of Unfair and Inaccurate Water Bills (NYT)
Eric P. Newcomer reports: “A woman from Queens said her quarterly water bill jumped by more than $500. A small-business owner said his bill for the quarter rose to $10,000 from about $1,000. They were among nine New Yorkers who recounted the frustrating details of their interactions with the city’s Department of Environmental Protection, which manages the city’s water meters, during a public hearing on Thursday organized by the city’s public advocate, Bill de Blasio. The hearing was spurred by his collecting bills from hundreds of customers who complained about unfair billing by the department.”

POLITICS
444G Payback Just Fine By Bill (NYP)
Sally Goldenberg reports: “Mayoral candidate Bill Thompson yesterday got a huge boost in his bank account that could help him pay down nearly $600,000 in old campaign fines from his last run for City Hall. Thompson, the former city comptroller and a Democratic hopeful for mayor next year, received $444,029 from the city Campaign Finance Board — matching funds he was still owed from his unsuccessful bid to unseat Mayor Bloomberg in 2009.”

ENVIRONMENT
Law Forces Sewage Alerts (Times Union)
Sally Goldenberg reports: “If there's one thing worse than having untreated sewage discharged into rivers or streams, it's not knowing about it. Starting in May, New Yorkers will get the bad news when such discharges occur, thanks to a bill signed Thursday by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. Dubbed the "Sewage Pollution Right to Know" law, it requires publicly owned sewage treatment plants and sewer systems to notify the state Department of Environmental Conservation and the public whenever the facility releases untreated or partially treated sewage.”

POLITICS
Rangel Rallies with Former Leader of Alianza Dominicana (NYDN)
Amanda Moses reports: “Save the Alianza Dominicana. That was the message delivered by Rep. Charlie Rangel on Thursday as he stood beside Washington Heights residents to call for the revival of the once-proud social services agency. The non-profit has been struggling to survive since it was buffeted by a city investigation and state scrutiny for alleged corruption and mismanagement.”

TRANSPORTATION
City Island Bridge Plan Ripped (NYP)
Jennifer Fermino reports: “It’s the Bronx version of a bridge to nowhere, according to critics. The city has greenlighted the construction of a $149.5 million bridge to City Island, a futuristic-looking mega project that many locals claim is wildly ugly and overpriced.”

SCIENCE
Princeton Physicists Win $12M From Russian Billionaire (Times of Trenton)
Joshua Rosenau reports: “A physicist whose work on understanding matter has contributed to a different concept of the universe is among four faculty members at the Institute for Advanced Study who have won $12 million in prizes given by Russian billionaire Yuri Milner for their advanced work in theoretical physics.”

TRANSPORTATION
Edge Is Lost in NJ Commuter Platform Race (WSJ)
Ted Mann reports: “For a few months, a select group of NJ Transit commuters shared a secret edge over their rush-hour rivals: early insight into unpredictable track assignments at Penn Station. But that crucial advantage evaporated last week when the railroad blocked a data feed used to decode track assignments. Clever Commute, a start-up website, had begun selling a premium train information site for $3.99 per month that include the track listings—without NJ Transit's blessing.”

TRANSPORTATION
Queens Residents Say Noise From Aircraft Is Plane Awful (NYDN)
Vera Chinese reports: “Experts tracking the uptick in airplane noise say there are two major culprits for the overall increase — the recently implemented New York/New Jersey/Philadelphia Airspace Redesign and satellite technology which narrows the path that planes follow.”

OPINION
Columnist: If Guns Do Not Kill, Tax the Bullets (NYT)
Jim Dwyer re-visits an idea from Daniel Patrick Moynihan: “His solution: Increase the tax on bullets. He wouldn’t raise the tax on ammunition typically used for target shooting or hunting. But he proposed exorbitant taxes on hollow-tipped bullets designed to penetrate armor and cause devastating damage. ‘Ten thousand percent,’ Mr. Moynihan said. That would have made the tax on a 20-cartridge pack of those bullets $1,500.”

 

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