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Sherman A1

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Gender: Male
Current location: U.S.
Member since: Sat May 13, 2006, 06:37 AM
Number of posts: 26,758

Journal Archives

What Would You Do With an Extra $500 a Month? A financial experiment in five true stories.

Soon after Michael Tubbs became mayor of Stockton, California, at the age of 26 — the youngest to be elected to a city of over 100,000 and Stockton’s first African-American mayor — he directed his policy fellows to research ways to reduce poverty. Four years earlier, in 2012, the city had declared bankruptcy, and it was still mired with high unemployment and crime. The team came back to report that one way to end poverty was to give people money.

This solution had a name, “universal basic income” (or UBI), and a long history in America as a social-policy idea. It had been embraced by Thomas Paine and Milton Friedman and made a cornerstone of the Poor People’s Campaign advanced by Martin Luther King Jr. Both Richard Nixon and Jimmy Carter had proposed replacing welfare with a guaranteed income. More recently, the idea had been revived by Silicon Valley entrepreneurs, who saw it as a remedy for the burgeoning “useless class” — all those people whose jobs technology is making obsolete.

Tubbs was skeptical, but the following May he attended a conference on the future of work, where he sat next to the economist and developer Natalie Foster. Along with Chris Hughes, a co-founder of Facebook, Foster had launched an advocacy group dedicated to advancing the conversation about guaranteed income. She told Tubbs they were looking for a test city, and he suggested that Stockton might be the perfect place.

Less than two years later, this past February, the Stockton Economic Empowerment Demonstration gave 130 individuals, randomly selected from neighborhoods with a median household income at or below Stockton’s $46,033, their first monthly payment of $500, no strings attached. Over the program’s 18 months, SEED would track how the money was being spent and assess the subjects’ financial security and well-being as well as more subtle measures of the money’s impact, such as their feelings of hope and of mattering.

http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2019/10/universal-basic-income-stockton-california.html

St. Louis To Crack Down On Large Building Owners Who Don't Report Energy Use

Operators of St. Louis buildings larger than 50,000 square feet will soon face penalties if they don’t report energy and water use to the city.

The city’s benchmarking ordinance, which went into effect in 2017, requires owners of municipal and privately owned buildings to report energy and water consumption to the St. Louis Building Division. City officials will levy fines and deny occupancy permits to buildings that don’t comply within 60 days of receiving a warning letter.

The penalties strengthen an ordinance that aims to cut greenhouse gas emissions that cause climate change.

Buildings produce 77% of St. Louis’ emissions, according to a 2015 report from the city’s sustainability office.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/st-louis-crack-down-large-building-owners-who-dont-report-energy-use

Jane Smiley Wants America To Get To Know St. Louis Better

Jane Smiley recently came back to St. Louis for her 50th high school reunion. But unlike many of us, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist wasn’t content simply to explore what had changed around town. Smiley also wrote an essay about the city, and her travels here, for The New York Times.

On Friday’s St. Louis on the Air, Smiley discussed her essay, detailing her abiding love for St. Louis, particularly its foliage and its wonderful old houses.

She said she loved growing up in Webster Groves, where she lived until she was 11. “The wonderful thing about Webster is that it has all different kinds of neighborhoods all kind of smashed together, and so as you’re walking along, you’re seeing all these different houses, all these kinds of people,” she said. “It was a fascinating place to grow up and explore.”

Smiley added that she wasn’t one of those kids who dreamed of fleeing St. Louis for the big city. “I appreciated it even at the time,” she said.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/jane-smiley-wants-america-get-know-st-louis-better

This Illinois Synagogue Can Be Yours For $150,000

B’nai Sholom temple has stood on a quiet, tree-lined street in Quincy, Illinois, for almost 150 years.

But the historic Jewish synagogue — one of the oldest in the state — could soon be reduced to rubble.

The temple has sat empty since May, after its dwindling congregation was forced to confront a difficult reality: The members had to sell the building because they could no longer afford to maintain it. While they’re holding out hope that another religious organization will purchase the temple and preserve it, they’re preparing for the worst.

The synagogue, which features massive stained-glass windows and detailed brickwork, was built not long after the Civil War. Construction began in 1869 — the same year the transcontinental railroad was completed.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/illinois-synagogue-can-be-yours-150000

English Learners Make Gains; Achievement Gap Persists For Missouri's Black Students

How the Missouri education department measures student comprehension and school performance is complicated. The manual for determining a school’s performance is dozens of pages long.

Making it even more complex, students have taken four different sets of tests in six years. Just when the test saw stability, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education overhauled how it presents school performance (in short, it got more colorful and less numerical).

We had the headlines for what to make of this year’s Annual Performance Reports and Missouri Assessment Program tests. But now that there’s been some time to digest the data, here are some takeaways from what it all says:

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/english-learners-make-gains-achievement-gap-persists-missouris-black-students

Andrew Yang 10 hour Q&A Live now on Facebook

You can submit questions at his webpage.

https://www.yang2020.com

Andrew Yang 10 hour Q&A Live now on Facebook

https://www.yang2020.com

Missouri Redesigns School Report Cards -- And It's A Lot To Digest


Missouri schools are getting a different kind of report card from the state. It's now color coded instead of offering a numerical grade.

The Annual Performance Report is the state’s way of showing how school districts are doing. After years of providing a percentile score that conveyed how school districts ranked, this year’s APR instead uses color-coded bar graphs that measure not only how students did on state tests, but how much they improved.

State education officials say this new format is more nuanced. Even though the reports look different, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education said it used the same worksheet to calculate performance as in the past.

Education officials “decided that our best course of action for this year would be to provide the data so that you can actually look at, ‘How are our kids performing?’ and focus in on the areas that our communities are finding of great value,” said Commissioner Margie Vandeven.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/missouri-redesigns-school-report-cards-and-it-s-lot-digest

Missouri Redesigns School Report Cards -- And It's A Lot To Digest

Missouri schools are getting a different kind of report card from the state. It's now color coded instead of offering a numerical grade.

The Annual Performance Report is the state’s way of showing how school districts are doing. After years of providing a percentile score that conveyed how school districts ranked, this year’s APR instead uses color-coded bar graphs that measure not only how students did on state tests, but how much they improved.

State education officials say this new format is more nuanced. Even though the reports look different, the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education said it used the same worksheet to calculate performance as in the past.

Education officials “decided that our best course of action for this year would be to provide the data so that you can actually look at, ‘How are our kids performing?’ and focus in on the areas that our communities are finding of great value,” said Commissioner Margie Vandeven.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/missouri-redesigns-school-report-cards-and-it-s-lot-digest

Midwestern Farm Runoff Creates Headache For Louisiana Shrimpers

It’s only midmorning, but shrimper Thomas Olander is already calling it quits for the day in a small bayou in St. Mary Parish, on the central Louisiana coast.

There aren’t enough shrimp out there — especially the highly sought-after jumbo shrimp that fetch the highest prices at the market.

“It's just not worth it,” Olander said, of his morning burning fuel, supplies and time.

A bad day on the water typically isn’t something to fret about. Some days are good, some days are bad, Olander said, and in the end it all evens out. But over the past few years, the bad days are outnumbering the good ones.

https://news.stlpublicradio.org/post/midwestern-farm-runoff-creates-headache-louisiana-shrimpers
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