Week of September 19, 2005
9/23/05Math Scores Rise
For the first time since testing began in 1999, more than three quarters of all city fourth graders -- 77 percent -- met or exceeded standards in math last year, according to results released yesterday. The scores rose by more than 9 percentage points from the previous year, with particularly large increases among black and Hispanic students. While the results were seen as providing an election year boost for Mayor Michael Bloomberg, the news was not as good for eighth graders. The older kids in the city, like their counterparts across the state, saw their scores drop slightly.
For more, see Education Links in the News
Teachers Rally to Demand Contract Talks (Newsday)
The City's Evacuation Plan (NY Sun)
Film Festival, Ayn Rand's New York, the Harlem Waterfront and More (Gotham Gazette)
Complete -- Though Unofficial -- Primary Election Results (Gotham Gazette)
Environment Links In The News (Gotham Gazette)
City officials announced yesterday that they had selected a Spanish company to install 20 freestanding toilets along with 330 newsstands and 3,300 bus shelters. The deal would bring in at least $1 billion to city coffers over 20 years. The company would install the facilities for free and pay for the right to sell advertising on them. Users will have to pay a nominal fee to use the new toilets, which could appear on the streets as early as 2007, city officials said.
MTA's New Communciation Systems Crashes (Newsday)
Rockefeller Drug Law Reform? (Gotham Gazette)
Crime Links In The News (Gotham Gazette)
The United Federation of Teachers said it would accept an arbitration panel's report as the basis for a new contract, and will consider striking if a deal is not reached soon. The panel called for an 11.4 percent raise in exchange for a longer day and other concessions. The city has agreed to use the panel's recommendations as a guide in the past, but negotiations have not resumed since the report's publication last week. Teachers' strikes are illegal -- the last one was in 1975. A spokesperson for the mayor would not discuss the possibility of a strike this fall.
Undecided Races; New Election Results
The Board of Elections continues to do recounts on three races -- for Brooklyn surrogate court, Brooklyn civil court, and the district 8 city council seat. See Gotham Gazette's Election Results Page for the latest results -- including unofficial winners of party committee and judicial convention seats.
Community Development Links In The News (Gotham Gazette)
9/20/05Cindy Sheehan in New York
A speech by anti-war activist Cindy Sheehan at a rally in Union Square Park was interrupted by police yesterday and the rally's organizer arrested, because, police said, the protesters lacked the necessary sound permit. Sheehan, who became the best-known face of the anti-war movement when she camped out near President George W. Bush's ranch in August to ask why her soldier son Casey died in Iraq, has been in New York City since Sunday, as part of a 51-city bus tour.
Gotti Jury Deadlocked (Newsday)
Manhattan's Only Known Winery (The New Yorker)
Columbus Circle's $23 M Renovation Complete (Associated Press)
Non-Citizens, Ex-Felons Campaign To Be Allowed To Vote (City Limits)
Job Hunters Get Government Help At One-Stop Centers (Gotham Gazette)
Social Services Links In The News (Gotham Gazette)
9/19/05Ferrer Gets 40 Percent, Runoff Avoided
After recounting ballots over the weekend, the New York City Board of Elections is expected to announce today that Democratic mayoral candidate Fernando Ferrer received more than 40 percent of the vote, enough to avoid a runoff election. Even though second place finisher U.S. Representative Anthony Weiner conceded last week, officials said a runoff would still be required if Ferrer did not get a sufficient number of votes. A runoff would have cost the city an estimated $12 million.
For more on the recount and other election news, see Campaign 2005
The City's Young and Future Politicians (NY Times)
Fire Response Times Still Slower (Newsday)
Coney Island's Bold Las Vegas-Like Development Plan (New York Magazine)
Katrina's Wake-Up Call For New York? (Gotham Gazette)
Transportation Links In The News (Gotham Gazette)