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Posts Tagged ‘New York’

First wage theft complaints filed in Houston

I hope these workers get the justice they seek. For three years Erik Lopez and his three brothers say they each often worked 80-hour weeks, building highway ramps and trash landfills for city projects. Yet they say their employer refused to pay them overtime. Nor did the company provide tax forms, such as a W-2, […]

Uber uber alles

Very interesting. Uber rolled out a new service in Manhattan [last] Tuesday that foreshadows the five-year-old company’s plans to become much more than a platform for e-hailing taxi and town car rides. Now, with UberRUSH, the company is piloting a bike and ped-courier service designed to move stuff, rather than people. For at least $15 […]

So where are the jobs he’s been trying to poach?

There’s an obvious question to ask about this story, but I don’t see it being asked. After a couple of high profile job-poaching trips to California and Illinois, Gov. Rick Perry is planning a new raid — this time on the Big Apple. And he’s putting big money behind the state’s big mouth: $1 million […]

A personal view of judicial elections

I’ve mentioned in this space before that my father Charles A. Kuffner, Jr. was a Supreme Court justice in New York. (Note: The Supreme Court in New York is basically the equivalent of a District Court in Texas. The top court in New York is the Appellate Court.) He was elected to that position in […]

The case against the food trucks

Reggie Coachman, president of the Greater Houston Restaurant Association, tries to make a case against giving food trucks freer rein downtown. Currently there are more than 939 active mobile units permitted in the city of Houston, including 774 trucks and trailers equipped with kitchens. The Mobile Food Unit Coalition primarily represents a small number (less […]

No Medicaid expansion for you!

So much for that. Texas will not expand Medicaid or establish a health insurance exchange, two major tenets of the federal health reform that the U.S. Supreme Court upheld last month, Gov. Rick Perry said in an early morning announcement. “I stand proudly with the growing chorus of governors who reject the Obamacare power grab,” […]

Stimulate the economy with marriage equality

​If New York can do it… New York City made quite a bit of money on gay marriage — 200,000 bucks, in fact. Cash flow into the city’s marriage bureau shot up since August, when same-sex nups got enacted, according to the New York Post. The office took in $2.26 million — up from $2 […]

Casinos expanding nationally

I have no idea what the political or budgetary climate will be like for the gambling industry here in Texas when the Lege next convenes in 2013, but they have been gaining a lot of ground elsewhere in the country. States have embraced casinos, after years of trepidation about their societal costs, for two simple […]

A step forward for online gambling

Interesting. The Justice Department has reversed its long-held opposition to many forms of Internet gambling, removing a big legal obstacle for states that want to sanction online gambling to help fix their budget deficits. The legal opinion, issued by the department’s office of legal counsel in September but made public on Friday, came in response […]

Bike sharing comes to New York

You’d have thought – or at least, I’d have thought – that New York City would have been a very early adopter of bike sharing. Turns out they’re just getting started now. At a press conference [last Wednesday] afternoon, the Department of Transportation announced that it has selected Portland-based Alta Bicycle Share, which runs similar […]

States looking at online gambling

Until the economy returns to the point where states aren’t completely strapped for revenue, I expect them to look at all possible sources of new money. It’s an idea gaining currency around the country: virtual gambling as part of the antidote to local budget woes. The District of Columbia is the first to legalize it, […]

Hey, Houston! Steal this idea!

Something like this needs to happen here in Houston. The BigApps competition, in which [New York City] made its data available to developers so they could make apps out of them that would be helpful to citizens, and offered prizes to the best entries, closed last night with a ceremony and the announcement of three […]

If we’re looking for revenue to help deal with that budget gap…

We could always follow the lead of many other states and adopt our own climate plan. Already, ten states in the Northeast have put their electric utilities under a cap-and-trade system known as RGGI. Eleven Western states and Canadian provinces are now laying the groundwork for their own cap-and-trade system, known as the Western Climate […]

Uncle Dan wins re-election

For some more pleasant election-related news, I’m happy to note that my uncle Dan Kuffner was re-elected to the Dutchess County (New York) Legislature. In District 7, Legislator Dan Kuffner, D-Hyde Park, beat Republican Yancy McArthur. [...] On Nov. 3, Kuffner led by only 44 votes. After 118 paper ballots were counted Friday, Kuffner had […]

Friday random ten: It’s a helluva town

I don’t really have anything new or original to say about this anniversary of 9/11. What I published back in 2002 is as meaningful as anything I could say today. What I can do is give you some music in honor of my hometown, which is always in my thoughts no matter how long it’s […]

Good times and bad for museums

Nice to hear that a couple of local museums are thriving in these hard times. Sadly, they’re very much the exception. On the heels of the March 14 opening of a seven-gallery addition to its Hermann Park-area building, the [Children's Museum of Houston] this week announced plans to add 25 positions to its 177-member workforce. […]

Houston Have Your Say 2.0

So last year I got to serve as an on-the-spot blogger for KUHF’s production of Houston Have Your Say, which was about immigration. I blogged some of it at Kuff’s World and some of it at a blog that was set up for the show. Tonight I’ll be back in the KUHF studios along with […]