Extra Extra : Infrastructure

Tracking federal, state aid money after the deadly Oklahoma tornadoes

An investigation by Oklahoma Watch and KGOU found that almost three-fourths of the people who applied for FEMA aid following the killer twisters in Oklahoma last year were rejected.

While tens of millions of dollars in state and federal aid were released following the storm, the process of receiving and using those funds hasn’t always gone smoothly.

According to Oklahoma Watch:

“At least three cities and a school district had requests denied because the damage was determined to be unrelated to the disaster. Others were turned away because the project was too small, under $1,000, to be eligible ...

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Extra Extra Monday: Fatal flaws in Oklahoma’s execution system, absent city council members, teacher misconduct

Fatal Flaws: How Oklahoma’s lethal injection process went wrong | Tulsa World

Nearly 15 years after Stephanie’s murder, Lockett lay dying as her family watched along with a gallery of law enforcement officials, prison administrators and journalists through the window of Oklahoma’s execution chamber.

State officials had promised in court records and interviews that Oklahoma’s new execution protocol would dispatch him swiftly and painlessly. They were so confident in this assurance that Gov. Mary Fallin ordered Lockett to be executed April 29, the same night another convicted killer was set to die.

Lockett’s death didn’t ...

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Many displaced by superstorm Sandy still wait for housing help

Seventeen months after Congress authorized up to $16 billion to fix homes wrecked by superstorm Sandy, tens of thousands of people still are living in damaged houses or paying rent on top of a mortgage as they wait for rebuilding help, reports The Wall Street Journal. About 15,000 New York City residents are seeking aid, but city officials say only 352 have so far received a check or city-provided home construction.

Lack of funding, territorial disputes allowing for crumbling railroad bridges in Colorado

The York Street railroad bridge in Colorado is one of many with serious structural damage. KDVR - Denver reviewed safety inspections for more than 150 railroad bridges and then visited dozens of the most damaged ones.

About one-quarter of those which crossed a city or county road either flunked their latest safety inspection or were deteriorating toward a state inspectors call “structurally deficient.”

The station created a list and map of the 25 worst railroad bridges in Colorado based on poor structural scores, number of years inspectors have labeled the bridge deficient, lack of repairs and additional inspection notes such as ...

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San Francisco-Oakland Bay Bridge rusting in vital areas

New York gas mains installed in 40s leaking, prone to explosions

It is a danger hidden beneath the streets of New York City, unseen and rarely noticed: 6,302 miles of pipes transporting natural gas.

Leaks, like the one that is believed to have led to the explosion that killed eight people in East Harlem this month, are startlingly common, numbering in the thousands every year, federal records show.

Functional and financial concerns for proposed radio communications network in Monroe County

It's a firefighter's worst nightmare: Trapped inside a smoke-filled basement, he radios for help. But he can't get a signal. He speaks, but his colleagues and dispatchers hear nothing.

Monroe County leaders and fire district officials agree that no firefighter should ever wind up in such a desperate position. But they are still working out how to ensure that the county's new multimillion-dollar digital radio system can prevent it from happening.

Under Christie, business booms for Port Authority's chief

It pays to be friends with Chris Christie, WNYC reported last month.

“The governorship of Chris Christie has been very good for David Samson, a close associate he installed as chairman of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey - and who has emerged as a central figure in the scandals swirling around the New Jersey governor. Records show that his law firm's lobbying revenues have skyrocketed during Christie's tenure, and its business as a bond counsel has quadrupled.

The story continued Tuesday as WNYC detailed Samson’s many opportunities to advance his own interests as Port ...

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Inside New York City’s Water Tanks, Layers of Neglect

With their quaint barrel-like contours and weathered cedar-plank sides, rooftop water towers are a constant on the New York City skyline. And though they may look like relics of a past age, millions of residents get their drinking water from the tanks every day.

But inside these rustic-looking vessels, there are often thick layers of muddy sediment. Many have not been cleaned or inspected in years. And regulations governing water tanks are rarely enforced, an examination by The New York Times shows.

Christie stuck in a jam over GWB lane closings

"A cache of private messages linking Governor Christie’s office to vindictive lane closures at the George Washington Bridge in September plunged the administration into a deep crisis on Wednesday, threatening Christie’s national profile as a straight-talker and feeding criticism that his administration has used its power to bully political enemies," northjersey.com reports. Read/watch the full story here.