City Lit: Harlem Benighted

A book review of Harlem: The Making of a Ghetto, by Gilbert Osofsky, Ivan R. Dee, Publisher, 1997 (orig. 1966), 276 pages, paper $14.95.

The Fed’s Bad Credit Report

Is your bank making enough loans to businesses in low-income neighborhoods? The Federal Reserve’s new CRA database probably won’t tell you much more than you already know.

Dreading the Needle

The Clinton Administration knows that needle exchange programs protect addicts against HIV and even give them access to the help they need to kick the habit. Yet, politics and timidity have kept Washington from giving harm reduction the seal of approval.

Elva’s Endgame

An East New York apartment complex suffered for years under HUD’s un-watchful eye. Now they are moving toward a future of tenant ownership and better living conditions–if only the city will give them a tax break.

Left Behind in Sandtown

The Enterprise Foundation spearheaded an effort to rebuild a blighted Baltimore neighborhood. They spent too much time on construction–and not enough on renewing a community.

Garbage Wars

Rudy Guiliani has vowed to close down Staten Island’s Fresh Kills dump by New Year’s Day 2002. All he needs to do to meet that deadline is redesign the city’s entire rail and road infrastructure, figure out a way to float 13,000 tons of garbage a day to Virginia and convince the city’s poorest neighborhoods that they would love a reeking waste transfer station in their backyard. Four years and ticking.

Immigrant Song and Dance

The city and the state have hyped their effort to rescue welfare and food stamps for legal immigrants. But the bureacracy is having a hard time changing gears.

Parental Dissent

School councils are supposed to be a forum for parent participation and a tool for power, but Rudy Crew is keeping them under wraps and under his thumb.