Quick Takes On NYC News
WEEK OF 30 May
City Test Scores Rise
Results of citywide public school tests - given in grades three, five, six and seven - marked the first time since 1991 that at least half the city's elementary and middle school students performed at or above grade level in both reading and math. The strongest improvements came in the fifth grade where the number of students meeting reading standards rose 19 percent and math standards increased 15 points. Coming two weeks after improved state test results, Mayor Michael Bloomberg said the scores demonstrate that his education reforms are working. Critics questioned the scores, arguing that unlike statewide tests, which allow city results to be compared with those of other areas, there are no comparable results for the citywide exams.
For more, see articles in City Hall news.
City Council Plans to Loosen Limits on Contributions by Unions
Nassau Leader Plans Run for Governor
NY Olympic Officials Fear Loss of Games
Fire Response Times Drop After Engines Ordered to Run Red Lights
Mayor Bloomberg's Trash Plan Stalled in City Council
New York Observer
Manhattan Housing Market Stays Strong
Crucial Court Decision on West Side Stadium Expected Today
Crime: Does Kendra's Law Work?
Beyond the Olympics
The Center for an Urban Future, a non-partisan think tank that focuses on economic issues, has analyzed the Bloomberg administration's economic development program. While the report is critical of key initiatives, like the West Side stadium, it also credits the mayor with initiating a forward-looking strategy to diversify New York's economy.
To read full report, click here (.pdf format)
East Side Park, West Side Stadium
The city plans to turn a two-mile stretch of
waterfront on the Lower East Side into a park with a
dramatic esplanade, marina and public plaza, according
to plans announced yesterday by Mayor Michael
Bloomberg. The $150 million in funding for the project
will come from federal money to help the city rebuild
from the September 11, 2001 attacks. New York would
also need $65 million in federal transportation funds
to move the entrance to the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel
and create a public plaza -- a major part of the
The East River park is among $800 million in projects
slated for the district represented by Assembly
Speaker Sheldon Silver, a key participant in the
debate over the mayorŐs proposed stadium on the West
Side. The announcement of the waterfront park comes
with the Public Authorities Control Board set to vote
on the stadium Friday. While Governor George Pataki,
who supports the stadium, controls part of the board,
so do Silver and Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno,
neither of whom have backed the stadium.
For more on the park and the stadium, see City Hall
Trump Group Sells West Side Land, Buildings for Record $1.8 Billion
Surveillance Cameras Placed in Brooklyn Subway Stations
Smoking in State Hits All-Time Low
Agencies Hiring Domestic Workers "Routinely" Discriminated, Spitzer Says
New York 1
Derailment of Work Train Snarls Subway Service
Wall Street Sees Its Power and Prestige Slip Away
Council Bill Would Require Schools to Translate, by
Vanishing Hotel Rooms
Despite a boom in tourism in New York, the number of
hotel rooms in the city declined in 2004 and is
expected to fall again in 2005, according to a report
by the Fiscal Policy Institute. Hotel employment has
dropped too as more hotel rooms in the city are
converted to luxury condominiums.
Physician Rafiq Sabir and musician Tarik Shah, both U.S. citizens, are
expected to be arraigned in federal court today on charges of conspiring in
a Bronx basement to set up a terror training camp to assist Al Queda.
Meanwhile, Governor George Pataki and Attorney General Eliot Spitzer have
introduced a series of anti-terrorism bills, according to the New York Post, including measures to
outlaw cyberterrorism and impersonation of a pilot, and "make it easier to
issue search warrants for out-of-state phone services and wireless phones."
And the plan by the New York Police Department to add about 400 new
surveillance cameras in high-crime and high-traffic areas is reportedly
being promoted as a possible weapon against terrorists as well.
While You Were Away
A new Stillwell Avenue subway station at Coney Island opened this weekend,
the post office is resisting the state's calls to stop shipping illegal
cigarettes, the Bronx terminal market faces eviction, New York police want
400 more surveillance cameras, the Independence Party endorsed Bloomberg for
mayor, etc. For details, see Recent Stories or Campaign 2005
Scheme To Train Terrorists Is Outlined In Court Papers
Transit Authority Eyes Fines For Walking From One Car To Another, Putting Foot On Seat, Etc.
Teacher Sabbaticals Plunge 45 Percent
Schools Dole Out $20 Million In Annual Pay To Suspended Employees Awaiting
Resolution Of Their Cases
New York Sun
12 Construction Projects Planned For 11 Blocks Of Upper West Side
Nine-Year-Old Girl Charged In Fatal Stabbing Of Her 11-Year-Old Best Friend
Clergy And Judges Meet In Brooklyn To Help Each Other Solve Housing And
Immigration Problems (Mocking and Cutesy-Poo, But Still Has Some Interesting
Lower Manhattan Economy
This report from the New York State Assembly adds new data on employment and
wages to their report of several months ago, and concludes that "though the
worst employment losses appear to be behind us, activity in Lower Manhattan
is still far below its pre-September 11th level." Manhattan below 14th
Street lost 68,700 private sector jobs in the three years after September
11, 2001, a decrease of about 13 percent.
To read full report, click here
Coney IslandThe station opened on the same weekend that the city beaches opened for the summer. A
Daily News assessment of city beaches found Coney Island to be one of the cleanest.
A new Stillwell Avenue subway station at Coney Island opened this weekend, after a process that cost $260 million and left area residents without full service for three years. Subway officials claim that the enormous glass station is the world's largest subway station, and compare it to the great European train stations of the industrial age. Completion of the project is also a rare bright sign for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which has recently been plagued by a series of unfortunate events, from fires to financial troubles.
Read Gotham Gazette's article about
the Stillwell Avenue project.
New York Times:
Post Office Resists State's Calls to Stop Shipping Illegal Cigarettes
New York Daily News:
The City's Cleanest And Dirtiest Beaches
New York Post:
Police Plan Surveillance Cameras for High Crime, High Traffic Areas
Past Beach Tragedies Spark Safety Campaigns
Bronx Terminal Market Vendors Face Eviction
Marines in New York for Fleet Week Commemorate 9/11
Last week's stories...
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