ICYMI: Off-Beat Business

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You’ve seen the headlines, read the front pages and checked out the business section. But In Case You Missed It, here are a few, under-the-radar business stories you might have overlooked.

Macy's Plans Massive Shoe Department
Macy's plans to showcase 300,000 pairs of shoes for sale at what it says will be the world's largest women's shoe department, according to BusinessWeek. The expansion comes as several retailers, including Saks Fifth Avenue and Barneys expand their shoe selections, chasing a lucrative market.

Quinn Plans Bill for Minority-Owned Businesses
Minority and women-owned businesses aren't getting their fair share of business contracts, so City Council Speaker Christine Quinn plans to introduce a bill to send more contracts their way, according to The New York Times.  Currently, city agencies award women and minorities a certain percentage of contracts for work that will cost less than $1 million, but Quinn's bill would expand the guideline to contracts for more than $1 million as well.

A New City Casino Plan in the Works
A resort and casino could make its way to Coney Island or Willets Point, reports the New York Daily News.  Proposals for casinos in other locations are coming in, but Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver says he doesn't want one in Manhattan.  He's said he'd rather a casino open in a destination area or a place that could become one.

Midtown Rent Prices Jump
Higher demand has led to a 19 percent increase in Midtown rents in the last year, reports Crain's New York Business.  Technology and media leased a total of 700,000 square feet in July, amounting to a five-year high, and helping to kick rents higher.

GED Changes Could Stump Job Seekers
The cost of taking a high school equivalency test could rise, possibly making it harder for many New Yorkers to get into college or get jobs, according to Crain's New York Business. Planned changes to the GED test, including making the test harder to pass, are expected to be put in place in 2014, but education experts say those changes can't be effectively implemented by then.