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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Bronx News Roundup, Wednesday, June 8

Weather: Stay thirsty, my friends, and drink lots of water. It's going to be a scorcher today in the Bronx, with highs reaching the mid- to upper-90s. Should be similarly toasty tomorrow and Friday before it cools down this weekend.

Story of the Day: Bloomy: FDNY to Aid in Illegal Subdivision Inspections
In late April, a 12-year-old and his parents were killed during a fire that quickly engulfed the illegally subdivided Belmont-area row house they were living in. The tragedy highlighted the dangers of illegally subdivided houses and buildings throughout the city and underscored the difficulty the city has in policing the problem. Yesterday, Mayor Bloomberg and the City Council got proactive about it, announcing a new program designed to urgently target "high-risk" buildings where illegal subdivisions have been reported and use city firefighters to help gain access to buildings during inspections. Prior to the deaths of the 12-year-old and his parents, the city had received several complaints about the row house being dangerously chopped up into single-room units. But after twice attempting and failing to gain access to the building, the Department of Buildings, as is the agency's policy, stopped trying to get in and inspect he place. In a test run of the new program, the city targeted 16 buildings and was able to inspect 93 percent of them.

Quick Hits:
Last Friday, in reaction to series of violent incidents in the Bronx this spring, students staged an anti-violence rally outside of Fannie Lou Hamer Freedom High School.

In anticipation of a rally against proposed school closures and layoffs, Bronx teachers met to commiserate, drink and talk strategy.

A former Bronx transit cop, Jorge Arbaje-Diaz, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for using his uniform and badge to steal cocaine and $4 million in illegal drug proceeds.

WNYC takes a look at the Botanical Garden's new Resplendent Roses show.

Students unveiled a new art exhibit in the Bronx's Crotona Park.

A Bronx mom who killed a 67-year-old woman after running a red light on the Upper West Side was sentenced to a year in prison.


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