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Thursday, June 16, 2011

Bronx News Roundup, June 16

Weather: Warm and sunny today, in the high 70s/low 80s. Chance of rain late tonight and into tomorrow morning.

Story of the Day: Mount Hope Dad Gets a New Kidney
We'll start off today's roundup with a feel-good piece in honor of Father's Day this weekend. New York Daily News' Patrice O'Shaughnessy brings us the story of Bronx dad Jameak Lee, who after a decade of illness, dialysis and disappointment, successfully underwent a kidney transplant this winter. This will be the first Father's Day in his 12-year-old son Justin's life that Lee will feel well enough to celebrate.

Speaking of transplants: Bronx's own St. Barnabas Hospital will be honored by the New York Organ Donor Network next week for being the top organ donor hospital in the greater New York metropolitan area. If you're not an organ donor already, you can register--it takes just a few minutes--by visiting www.donatelifeny.org and filling out an application form.

Quick Hits:
In other happy-father-son news: a man and his son have spent the last 20 years transforming a garbage-strewn lot in Highbridge into a flourishing community garden.

This New York Times editorial rundowns all the stuff the State Legislature has to tackle before they adjourn on Monday--for their cushy six months break--and how it's unlikely they'll get to everything on the list. And I thought I was a bad procrastinator.

Among the items still on Albany's agenda are the state's rent laws, which technically expired yesterday (see here for some more on that) and a bill to legalize same-sex marriage.

The gay marriage bill passed in the Assembly yesterday, as expected (unexpected: Bronx Assemblyman Nelson Castro changed his stance from a 'no' to a 'yes') but is being stalled by Senate Republicans, who have yet to bring it up for a vote.

Lots of film festivals going on in New York this weekend, including the Bronx Film Festival at Lehman College, which kicks off tonight.

City Island residents are rallying to keep their only firehouse open.

Lots of good stuff in this week's Riverdale Press, including a look at last weekend's RiverFest, how local schools are faring in their graduation rates, and some drama going down at Bronx Community Board 8.

The ongoing NYPD ticket-fixing scandal is having far-reaching, negative affects on many Bronx precincts. 

Assemblyman Jeff Dinowitz is on today's Brian Lehrer show discussing his push for New York to "opt out" of the Electoral College.

Union workers at Macy's reached a contract deal with management yesterday, avoiding a strike.

A 17-year-old Bronx boy has been arrested in connection with a string of robberies and assaults that took place Sunday morning in Morrisania. 

Your dose of local political gossip, courtesy of Bob Kappstatter--including a shout out to BxNN's attempt to get local sector crime stats from the NYPD (slight correction: our original FOIL request was for stats out of the 52nd Precinct, not the 50th.)

As Kappstatter mentions in his column, Councilman Fernando Cabrera is now drafting legislation that would require the police to release this information to the public. While we're on the topic, let's check back in with our countdown clock.

Editor's Note: BxNN will keep posting this clock in our daily news roundups -- tallying the days until the NYPD releases neighborhood sector crime stats, which we requested from them via a Freedom of Information Law request last year. For some background, see our Norwood News' editorial here.


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