Category: General

Belief in Debt Relief?

Should forgiving student loan debt be the next federal bailout to stimulate our nation’s struggling economy?  Robert Applebaum, a New York lawyer and organizer of the aptly-named Facebook movement, “Cancel Student Loan Debt to Stimulate the Economy,” thinks so.  While the title isn’t catchy, the words “cancel” and “debt” used in the same sentence is

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Back to school for immigrant parents

Schools can provide strong footholds for immigrant children in their new communities. Aside from access to critical learning opportunities, such as English as Second Language classes, they are able to become involved in sports teams, clubs, and other community activities that help ease the transition to life in a new place. Immigrant parents, however, do

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The Gulf Oil Spill: Economic Impact

The Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is shaping up to be one of the worst environmental disasters that has ever hit the United States.  What’s worse, being just five years after another devastating disaster, Hurricane Katrina, the Gulf Coast region is no doubt in grave danger as the oil continues to

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The Gulf Oil Spill: could local water supplies be affected?

The immediate damages resulting from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill are many: oil-soaked seabirds, warnings of seafood contamination and tar balls washing ashore. Damages to beaches are another prominent concern. Panama City Beach, Fla., hotels are fielding calls from would-be vacationers checking the status of beaches. The City of Destin, located in Florida’s panhandle, added

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Choose Your Neighborhood in Life and in Death

Land uses change.  Before you know it, the elementary school down the block is converted into loft condominiums, that run-down strip mall is replaced with an upscale shopping and entertainment destination, and the 40-acre family farm becomes eighteen 4,000 square foot McMansions.  But one land use is etched in stone for all eternity—the cemetery. Many

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Making Livability a Law

Following on the heels of the 2009 announcement of the joint initiative on livability between the United States Department of Transportation’s (DOT), Department of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD), and Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA), members of both the Senate and House have introduced bills that would make coordinating housing and transportation in an environmentally responsible

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Public Invited to Comment on New and Small Starts Transit Projects

The Federal Transit Administration is looking for cities to comment on the proposed changes to the “New Starts and Small Starts” transit project criteria for federal funding.  In the beginning of the year, Transportation Secretary LaHood announced that DOT intended to expand the definition of “cost effectiveness” used evaluate federal support for local public transportation

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Life on the Sidewalk

Many cities are blessed with neighborhoods that offer cafes, restaurants and small parks with tables and chairs or benches out on the sidewalk. In Washington, D.C. the neighborhood around the historic Eastern Market is a vortex for public life, especially on a weekend when merchants and shoppers sip coffee amidst strollers, kids in sports uniforms,

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