Extra Extra : Transportation

St. Louis County municipalities block access to driver's licenses to collect unpaid fines

Several municipalities in St. Louis County have used the Missouri Department of Revenue to force residents into making court payments, according to an investigation by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

Residents in Northwoods, Hanley Hills and Breckenridge Hills have been threatened with possible license suspensions, even though city officials have no such authority. A woman from Northwoods was even blocked from renewing her license because of unpaid fines. A local judge said that should not have been done.

Freddie Gray not the first to come out of Baltimore police van with serious injuries

Freddie Gray was not the first person to get seriously injured during a ride in a Baltimore police van.

Gray, 25, died from a spinal injury earlier this month after he was handcuffed and placed in a police van. The Baltimore Sun found that others have been injured during "rough rides," a term used to describe the unsanctioned technique of driving a police van to cause injury or pain to unbuckled and handcuffed detainees.

In 2005 a man was left a paraplegic after riding in a police van. His family won a $7.4 million verdict against the cops. Another ...

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University of Wyoming experiences sharp rise in parking tickets

The University of Wyoming is seeing a spike in parking tickets this year, according an analysis by the Casper Star-Tribune. Already more than 7,100 students have received tickets this year, putting the university on track to collect about $45,000 more in parking ticket revenue than it did last year.

At the same time, the university’s parking enforcement team has begun more aggressively ticketing drivers, changing officers’ inspection routes and hiring more employees.

Snow plows hit a Chicago alderman's street - five times

Snow removal crews hit a Chicago alderman’s quiet block five times in three days, according to a report by the Chicago Sun-Times.

Teaming with the plow tracker service clearstreets.org, the Sun-Times found that crews visited the alderman’s street twice on Sunday, twice Monday and a final time Tuesday morning, clearing the street down to the pavement. Meanwhile, nearby side streets remained unattended to and covered by deep snow as late as Monday afternoon.

The area of West 51st Street is home to Ed Burke, Chicago’s longest-serving alderman, and his wife, Anne, a justice of the Illinois ...

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Unlimited permits strain Boston’s parking system

Boston is reviewing its parking policies after the Boston Globe reported that the city gives away unlimited amounts of residential parking permits for free. While most homes claim just one permit, the Globe found that more than 300 people have five or more.

One couple had 11 in a neighborhood where parking is scarce. A city worker in another dense neighborhood had five vehicles, but just one private parking space; the rest were on the street.

Officials said they would review the decades-old program to see if there are ways to alleviate the parking problems. Potential changes could include limiting ...

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This Is What Happens to Your Bike After It’s Stolen

The actual number of bikes stolen in Seattle last year was likely far greater than the reported 1,121, the Seattle Met reports. A study in Montreal found that while about half of the city’s cyclists had been victims of bike theft, only about a third (one-sixth of all cyclists) reported their theft to police. Here, where biking, like espresso and drizzle, is part of the city’s essence, an estimated 4.1 percent of commutes are by bike, according to the Seattle Department of Transportation.

And it’s probably going to get worse. The city is pouring as ...

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Extra Extra Monday: Florida law allows troubled charter operators to keep running schools

Shuttered: Florida’s Failed Charter Schools | Naples Daily News

As charter schools have boomed in Florida — 622 operated in 2013-14, up from 257 in 2003-04 — many have also busted. Since charter schools were first permitted in 1996, 269 out of nearly 900 opened charter schools have closed, a failure rate of about 30 percent. That tally includes six schools closed in Lee County and two closed in Collier County.

To better understand Florida’s charter school failings, the Daily News undertook a first-of-its-kind task, examining all charter schools that have closed since 2008. The newspaper reviewed hundreds of closure documents ...

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Aggressive police take hundreds of millions of dollars from motorists not charged with crimes

They were pulled over for a minor traffic violation and, instead of getting just a ticket, they had their money confiscated by police. An aggressive brand of policing has led to the seizure of hundreds of millions of dollars in cash from American motorists and others not charged with crimes. It’s a largely hidden side effect of the government’s push to have the police become the eyes and ears of homeland security on highways since the 9/11 terror attacks.

In a three-part series, The Washington Post examines how thousands of people have been forced to fight legal ...

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Pedestrians dying at disproportionate rates in America's poorer neighborhoods

A national analysis of traffic fatality data finds that, in most areas, it’s the poorer neighborhoods that experience the highest pedestrian death rates.

Governing magazine analyzed accident location data for more than 22,000 pedestrian fatalities reported in federal data from 2008-2012. Within metro areas, low-income census tracts recorded fatality rates approximately twice that of more affluent neighborhoods. Similarly, tracts with poverty rates below the national rate of 15 percent registered 5.3 deaths per 100,000 residents over the five-year period. By comparison, poorer neighborhoods where more than a quarter of the population lived in poverty had a ...

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Extra Extra Monday: Peace Corps medical care, homeless students in the suburbs, license plate cameras

Trail of medical missteps in a Peace Corps death | The New York Times

A Peace Corps spokeswoman called Nick Castle’s death, from a gastrointestinal illness, “a tragic experience.” To examine its own conduct, the agency took the unusual step of engaging an outside American expert, whose report concluded that despite medical missteps by a Peace Corps doctor who missed signs of serious illness, Mr. Castle’s death could not have been prevented.

But the story of his death — pieced together from interviews and confidential reports and documents, including his autopsy — raises serious questions about Peace Corps medical care and ...

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