Boston Teachers Union brings contract dispute to JP

March 16, 2012
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SUMNER HILL—Representatives from the Boston Teachers Union (BTU) held a meeting at the Jamaica Plain Branch Library to discuss the 20-month-long ongoing contract negotiation process between themselves and the Boston Public Schools (BPS) on Feb. 16. The meeting was part of a series of meetings held all over the city to explain the BTU’s...

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Parent talks school cuts at council meeting

March 16, 2012
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Jamaica Plain resident Kieran Fitzgibbon, who has a son at the Curley K-8 School, spoke at the Jamaica Plain Neighborhood Council meeting last month about cuts in funding at that school. Fitzgibbon, who is part of a group of concerned Curley School parents, noted that funding is projected to be $6.2 million for 2013,...

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T parcel gets bids; deadline extended again

March 16, 2012
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FOREST HILLS—The MBTA has received bids on a surplus parcel south of the Forest Hills T Station on Hyde Park Avenue, but has extended its bidding deadline to April. MBTA spokesperson Joe Pesaturo told the Gazette that bids have been received for Parcel U, but would not disclose who the bidders are until after...

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Activist author talks gay rights and ‘religious left’

March 16, 2012
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It’s unusual to start a book reading with a song (“This Little Light of Mine”) and a prayer—but Rev. Osagyefo Uhuru Sekou is not a usual author. Reading from his book, “Gods, Gays and Guns: Essays on Race, Religion, and the Future of Democracy” at First Baptist Church on Centre Street on March 7,...

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Sami’s Wrap and Roll renovates

March 16, 2012
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Sami’s Wrap and Roll, a Middle Eastern eatery at 654 Centre St., has been closed for a period of time in March for renovations and has a new storefront sign saying Café Beirut. It is unclear whether the restaurant will reopen under the new name or new management. A message on its answering machine...

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JP resident named to gaming board

March 16, 2012
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Jamaica Plain resident Enrique Zuniga has been appointed to the Massachusetts Gaming Commission, which will oversee the newly legalized casino gambling in the state. “Public service is all about generating the best and most innovative outcomes for the taxpayers, and I ook forward to serving on the Gaming Commission in that spirit,” said Zuniga,...

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Man wounded in shooting

March 16, 2012
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A man was shot and wounded near Franklin Park last week, and police are seeking more information about a woman who was seen fleeing the area. The unidentified victim in the March 5 afternoon shooting transported himself to a hospital. At the time of the shooting, a witness reported seeing a woman running in...

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Wine on Tap

March 16, 2012
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Local leaders named to bank positions

March 16, 2012
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Eastern Bank has named two local leaders to its governing boards as part of its outreach to the Latino and lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender communities. Rebecca Haag, president and CEO of the Jamaica Plain-based AIDS Action Committee, and JP resident Gunner Scott, executive director of the Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC), are among...

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Police Spotlight: Fraud and ID theft on the rise

March 16, 2012
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Fraud and identity theft complaints in Jamaica Plain have been on the rise over the past three months. Seniors are especially being targeted. The frauds involve credit cards, debit cards, prepaid cards, bank checks and unfulfilled promises to provide services, among other scams. In one case, on March 11, a scammer pretending to be...

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Romney gets primary win

March 16, 2012
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Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won the state’s Republican Party presidential primary vote on March 6. Incumbent President Barack Obama was the only Democrat on his party’s ballot. The Green-Rainbow Party ballot-winner was still unclear as the Gazette went to press, though it appeared likely that Jill Stein would top the ballot, according to...

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Student dropout prevention bill moves ahead

March 16, 2012
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A bill that proposes new ways to prevent students from dropping out of school, sponsored by Jamaica Plain’s state Sen. Sonia Chang-Diaz, is gaining momentum in the State House. The bill (S. 185) would: raise the mandatory school attendance age from 16 to 18; expand a program to identify at-risk students; create a “graduation...

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Small Dig

March 16, 2012
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Tension continues between T police and youths, survey says

March 16, 2012
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The Hyde Square Task Force (HSTF) has completed a follow-up survey that, while showing some improvement, tension continues between MBTA Transit Police and urban youths. “What the findings show is that while there has been some improvements in the last 18 months, we still have major problems in how Transit Police interact with urban...

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Legislation aims to plug natural gas leaks

March 16, 2012
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There is legislation moving through the State house that aims to put a clamp on natural gas leaks, a problem one local resident says probably killed several trees on the Arborway. “Personally, I get upset,” said Sarah Freeman, a member of the Arborway Coalition, who acknowledges some trees on the Arborway have died due...

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AIDS Action

March 16, 2012
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Traffic committee reunites

March 16, 2012
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The Boston Police E-13 Traffic and Parking Committee is reconvening after a year absence. The committee, which is a collaboration among the local E-13 Police Station, residents, city agencies and elected officials geared to improving traffic safety, stopped meeting when its representative from the Boston Transportation Department retired and a replacement was not available....

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Crash victim cut out of car

March 16, 2012
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JAMAICA HILLS—A victim of a three-car accident on Parkman Drive had to be cut out of his vehicle by firefighters on March 2. The Boston Fire Department’s Egleston Square-based Rescue 2 company was called to the scene because it has heavy-duty rescue equipment, according to BFD spokesperson Steve MacDonald. “They used Jaws ...

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Occupy JP continues with fewer members

March 16, 2012
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Occupy JP, the local version of the Occupy protest movement, plans to join a St. Patrick’s Day Peace Parade this week, but is facing “dwindling” participation in its meetings, according to its website. “Do we want to continue Occupy JP?” was a question raised at a Feb. 5 meeting, according to minutes posted at...

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Rep. Sánchez looks at medicine shortage

March 16, 2012
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A State House committee co-chaired by local state Rep. Jeffrey Sánchez examined prescription drug shortages at a Feb. 13 hearing. “That came up from individual complaints—people saying there were on a cancer regimen and had to stop,” Sánchez told the Gazette. The Joint Committee on Public Health is investigating the impact of drug shortages...

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After the fire

March 16, 2012
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Urban farm aims to feed BPS

March 16, 2012
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A farm business is pushing Boston Public Schools (BPS) to include more locally-grown fruits and vegetables in school meals. City Growers, a for-profit organization that aims to transform vacant lots into intensive urban farms, is trying to join the fleet of food vendors who sell to BPS for student breakfasts and lunches. The problem...

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Police seek suspects in McDonald’s robbery

March 16, 2012
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EGLESTON SQ.—The Boston Police Department has released descriptions of two suspects in a Feb. 25 armed robbery of the McDonald’s restaurant at 3064 Washington St. The two men reportedly ate at the restaurant, then returned around 11 p.m. They entered through a back door and brandished a pistol while robbing the restaurant. The pistol...

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Kosovo president lays wreaths at cemetery

March 16, 2012
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FOREST HILLS—The president of the Republic of Kosovo visited Forest Hills Cemetery on March 4 to lay wreaths on the graves of prominent Albanian nationalists of the early 1900s. President Atifete Jahjaga paid her respects at the graves of Archbishop Fan Noli, who headed Boston’s St. George Cathedral, and Faik Konitza, who edited a...

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