Katie Toth newscast one April 11, 2014

From New York, I’m Katie Toth, with Columbia Radio News.

Mayor Bill DeBlasio celebrated his 101st day in office with a Google Hangout, to talk to New York stakeholders via web about universal pre K, the divisions between the boroughs, and other important issues.

During the hangout, promised changes to the Build it Back program, meant to pay for repairs and buy out homes destroyed by Hurricane Sandy last year. In a Google hangout marking his hundred-and-first-day in office, de Blasio said, he would work with Staten Island non profits to bring better services to the borough.

The program has faced criticism from homeowners for being too slow.  The deadline for homeowners to register was the end of October. But by the end of March, only three homeowners had been reimbursed.

A 22 year-old woman pedestrian was hit and killed by two cabs last night. Kelly Gordon of Brielle New Jersey was crossing York Avenue in the Upper East Side when one vehicle hit her and sent her into the opposite lane where she was then struck by another taxi. Nathan Oliver* is a spokesperson advocacy group Transportation Alternatives. He says that Manhattan’s avenues,

TOTH_OLIVER_MIXDOWN: Are really built more like highways than city streets. And the numbers back that up. You know these big streets account for about 10 per cent of the roads in New York City but 60 per cent of the traffic deaths. (0:13)

The accident comes three months after Bill DeBlasio unveiled Vision Zero, a plan to bring down the large numbers of pedestrians killed  in traffic. Last year, 173 pedestrians were killed in the city.

A College of New Jersey student in Ewing was exposed to a benzyl bromide this afternoon, resulting in the evacuation of three campus buildings.

Hazmat teams were brought in to clear the buildings of the hazardous chemical, which is extremely irritating and ha been used as tear gas.

Watch out commuters: President Obama is in town today. He’s touching down at JFK Airport at 3pm attending Reverend Al Sharpton’s annual civil rights conference, and will be heading to midtown this evening to the Sheraton New York on 53rd Street about an hour later to deliver remarks at the National Action Network’s Convention.

Katie Toth, Columbia Radio News.
*CORRECTION: This newscast identified a Transportation Alternatives spokesperson as Nathan Oliver. Uptown Radio spoke to Noah Budnik, the group’s policy director.

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