Morning Headlines | Selected by the WNYC News Hub

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

Deaths Rise for Drivers, Bikers and Walkers on City Streets (NYT)
Matt Flegenheimer reports: “Traffic fatalities from July 2011 through June 2012 were up 23 percent from the previous year — to 291, from 236. It was the first increase since 2007, when there were 310 traffic fatalities. Though overall crashes fell slightly for the second straight year, 176 cyclists or pedestrians were killed in crashes, up from 158 the previous year. The other 115 deaths were motorists or their passengers, a sharp rise from the 78 drivers and passengers killed the year before.”

Nets Helped Clear Path for Builder in Brooklyn (NYT)
Charles V. Bagli and Joseph Berger report: “Bruce C. Ratner did not pretend to be much of a basketball fan when he paid $300 million in 2004 for the New Jersey Nets. Before long, the team had the worst record in the National Basketball Association, and he had a reputation as one of the worst owners in professional sports. But he also had the leverage he needed to pull off a real estate megadeal.”

Dear Waldorf, Mummy Stole Your Teapot Back in 1935. So Sorry. (NYT)
James Barron reports: “Bring back our spoons, the Waldorf said. Our forks. Our long-lost teapots that had been ‘secretly checked out,’ as the hotel put it on its Facebook page. ‘We’re giving you the chance to give it back, no questions asked.’ Some newspaper articles were more pointed after the hotel announced the amnesty program in June: ‘Do you have a souvenir from New York’s legendary Waldorf-Astoria hotel that perhaps you shouldn’t have?’ USA Today wondered. ‘Perhaps Aunt Bessy had sticky fingers?’”

Analysis: Governor Christie’s Affordable Housing Policy in Flux (The Record)
Anthony Campisi reports: “Governor Christie came into office three years ago pledging to weaken the state’s strict affordable-housing rules and give towns more power to decide what gets built within their borders. Yet Christie’s attempt to unilaterally change New Jersey’s regulations — including his order to dismantle the state’s affordable housing agency — has only intensified a long-running feud over the issue and could end up making the governor’s goal more difficult to achieve.”

Book Publisher Penguin Group Sues Authors Who Skip Deadlines (NYP)
Dareh Gregorian reports: “The alleged deadbeat dozen include “Prozac Nation” author Elizabeth Wurtzel, New Yorker writer Rebecca Mead, Wonkette founder Ana Marie Cox, and Holocaust survivor/tall-tale teller Herman Rosenblat — and some of the writers have held on to the cash for years after their deals were canceled. Wurtzel signed a $100,000 deal for a book to help teenagers cope with depression back on Valentine’s Day 2003. The suit says the manuscript was due by 2008, and the publisher pulled the plug when the “Bitch” writer blew her deadline. She never returned the $33,000 advance she’d been given. The publisher wants it back, plus $7,000.”

Ex-Hospital CEO Accused of $1.4M Kickback Scheme (Crain’s)
Tania Karas reports: “John Reynolds, 63, was arrested at his home in Cataumet, Mass., Wednesday morning. He was allegedly involved in three separate kickback schemes from 1996 through 2007 where he extorted or received payments from hospital vendors, a hospital employee and a U.K.-based healthcare organization, according to a statement by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara.”

Controversial Bill Would Allow Terminally Ill Patients to Decide When It’s Time to Die (NYT)
Matt Friedman reports: “Assemblyman John Burzichelli (D-Gloucester) on Monday quietly proposed a bill that would grant doctors the right to prescribe lethal doses of drugs to patients who have less than six months to live. It’s called the New Jersey Death with Dignity Act. The South Jersey lawmaker wants suffering patients to have the option of ending their days on their own terms. He expects a long debate on the bill.”

Bronx Pol Suing City Board of Elections, Incumbent Over Irregularities (NYDN)
Daniel Beekman reports: “Defeated 84th Assembly District challenger Maximino Rivera is suing the New York City Board of Elections and longtime state Assemblywoman Carmen Arroyo. Rivera filed a lawsuit in Bronx Supreme Court Monday that accuses Arroyo of cheating her way to victory in their heated Democratic primary election last month. The last-ditch lawsuit claims the incumbent politician engaged in ‘voter intimidation’ and ‘rampant electioneering’ on Sept. 13.”

Gay Couple Sues Conservative Group, Saying It Stole Their Kiss (NYT)
Andy Newman reports: “On a May afternoon in Brooklyn in 2010, Thomas Privitere and Brian Edwards of Montclair, N.J., clasped hands and kissed in a park overlooking the Brooklyn Bridge. The moment was captured by a photographer they had hired, and the men liked the photo so much they used it to announce their engagement. Last spring, a conservative group used the same photo in a political mailer in Colorado in a somewhat different context: to illustrate the evils of same-sex unions.”

Qns. Pol Mulling GOP Chair (NYP)
Carl Campanile reports: “Rep. Bob Turner said yesterday he’s up for a new challenge — becoming the next leader of the divided Queens Republican Party. GOP insiders are touting Turner, who won Anthony Weiner’s old congressional seat on Democratic turf last year, as the man with the credibility and integrity to fuse the party’s warring factions.”

Video Shows Mouse Scurrying in Olives at Fairway (NYDN)
There’s some confusion about whether the tiny four legged critter seen sampling the stuffed green olives at Fairway is a mouse or a baby rat, but as Stephen Rex Brown reports, it’s pretty disgusting: “A revolting video posted on neighborhood blog captured a mouse scurrying about an assortment of oily olives at the Fairway supermarket. The nauseating footage was shot just after midnight on Wednesday at the olive bar inside the grocery store on Broadway near W. 74th St., the blog reported.”