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Morning Headlines | Selected by the WNYC News Hub

Monday, August 27, 2012

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

ENVIRONMENT
Talking Trash: Burn it (Crain’s)
Andrew Hawkins reports: “City residents throw away almost 50,000 tons of trash every day. That's 12.5 pounds of garbage for each man, woman and child. Banana peels. Box springs. Bulky construction material. Everything. And the city's running out of places to bury it. Staten Island's Fresh Kills landfill is long-filled. And the states that accept the city's trash—Pennsylvania, Ohio, Virginia—are running out of room themselves. Mayor Michael Bloomberg sees a solution. He wants to turn a portion of the city's garbage into energy, in hopes of reducing truck traffic and the reliance on out-of-state landfills. But the idea—and the company that may be best suited to make it happen—is running into trash politics.”

EDUCATION
Back-to-School Special. Not! (Crain’s)
Mary Shell reports: “It's back-to-school time, and along with the familiar pinch of tuition hikes, students at New York University, Columbia and the City University of New York are in for another unpleasant expense: double-digit increases in student health insurance premiums. NYU students face a 33% hike, and Columbia's students will look to an 11% rise in basic health plan costs on top of "health services" fees that can approach $1,000.”

HEALTH
Health Insurance Could Cost NYC-ers More Than $100K Annually (NYDN)
Kenneth Lovett reports: “Insurance premiums for those who are unemployed or don’t get coverage through work have risen — mostly by double digits — annually for more than a decade. As the costs kept growing, many healthy New Yorkers simply went without coverage, leaving mostly chronically ill patients who need insurance to foot the bill.”

ENERGY
Indian Point Shutdown Could Trigger Blackouts: Study (NYP)
Bill Sanderson reports: “Gov. Cuomo ought to be careful what he wishes for when it comes to closing Indian Point. Cuomo’s desire to shut the two nuclear-power generators in upper Westchester could bring electricity shortages and blackouts as soon as 2016 from the Catskills to Long Island, say the managers of the state’s power grid. On summer days and other times when the system is under “stress conditions,” closing Indian Point would leave New York’s electric grid “degraded,” says a draft report on the state’s electricity needs over the next decade.”

POLICE
NYPD: Muslims' Conversations About Anti-Muslim Bias Justify Spying on Muslims (Mother Jones)
Adam Serwer reports: “Muslims talking about anti-Muslim discrimination is proof the New York Police Department should spy on Muslims—at least according to the NYPD. The NYPD official in charge of the department's massive surveillance of local Muslims told a court in June that two conversations in Urdu overheard by his unit prove the worth of the spying program—a program that, as the Associated Press first reported on Tuesday, never led to a single lead, arrest, or investigation.”

PARKS
A Law to Expose City Parks’ Inequalities Is Neglected (NYT)
Jacob Hodes reports: “Four years ago, the City Council passed a law to shed light on how much money was flowing into different parks across the city. Advocates were concerned that the parks system was splitting in two: in wealthy areas of the city, gleaming, innovative green spaces, buttressed by private financing sources; elsewhere, ailing parks with far fewer resources at their disposal. The legislation required the Department of Parks and Recreation of New York City to prepare an annual report that would detail, park by park, the contributions of nonprofits and other private donors.”

POLITICS
Embattled Queens State Sen. Shirley Huntley Steered Thousands to Family Members (NYDN)
Kenneth Lovett reports: “State campaign records show Huntley’s campaign wrote seven checks to her daughter Pamela Corley in September 2010 for a total of $50,700. The records note the payments were for wages, polls, consulting and office expenses — but Huntley would not provide further explanation.”

CRIME
No Background Checks for N.J. EMTs (The Star-Ledger)
Susan K. Livio reports: “State health officials and ambulance companies say only a fraction of New Jersey’s nearly 29,000 certified EMTs have committed crimes or violations that would jeopardize their status. But some health care advocates and lawmakers want a tougher law, saying New Jerseyans don’t realize the people answering a call for help and entering their home might not be properly vetted. Over the past dozen years, the state disciplined 104 people, detailed on a list field professionals call the ‘wall of shame.’”

POLITICS
USTA Pulls Free US Open Tickets for City Politicians (NYP)
Sally Goldenberg reports: “The US Tennis Association yanked all invitations to elected city officials and city employees last week because the Conflict of Interest Board quietly ruled that they can’t accept the freebies, The Post has learned. The perk — doled out for decades — usually lands officials in choice seats for whatever match they choose.”

EDUCATION
Home Schooling on the Rise in NYC (DNAinfo)
Farran Powell reports: “... For a growing number of local students, their classroom is their living room and their teacher is their mom or dad, as the number of parents choosing to home school — or even ‘unschool’ their children — climbed to nearly 3,000 students, according to New York City Department of Education.”

MEDIA
Times Agrees to Sell About to Diller’s IAC (NYT)
Michael J. De La Merced reports: “The New York Times Company has agreed to sell the About Group, which includes the About.com network of topic sites, to Barry Diller’s IAC/InterActiveCorp for about $300 million in cash, the company said on Sunday. The deal, which is expected to close in the next several weeks, continues a corporate overhaul that is refocusing The Times on its core newspaper and Web site operations.”

CULTURE
Patrick Stewart’s Move to Park Slope Spoofed on Tumblr (DNAinfo)
Leslie Albrecht reports: “Park Slopers, take heart. The captain of the Starship Enterprise dreads his work shift at the Park Slope Food Coop just as much as you do. That's one of the jokes on a new Tumblr page, Park Slope Patrick Stewart, that imagines the famous actor and the characters he's portrayed ruminating on local issues such as bike lanes, a car-free Prospect Park and the Barclays Center. Stewart reportedly bought a $2 million house in Park Slope recently, and the Tumblr homage, first reported by F---ed in Park Slope, popped up a few days after news of the actor's arrival broke.”

 

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