October 6: Working and Poor | Ride the Ducks ceases Philly tours | Feds talk Vision Zero

In the Philadelphia region 800,000 people live below the federal poverty line, making $24,300 or less to support a family of four. Presidential candidates aren’t talking much about poverty, but they are weighing in on issues like raising minimum wage and creating strong jobs. Between now and November 8 our WHYY colleagues Katie Colaneri and Aaron Moselle are rolling out a series called “Working and Poor” which will explore the policies that could improve the lives of people trying to make ends meet. The first looks at how people in poverty are overlooked on the campaign and how candidates instead talk about “income inequality.”

Ride the Ducks tours won’t bring boatloads of tourists in an amphibious vehicle down city streets anymore. The company has suspended its Philly operations, citing in part a 330 percent increase in insurance premiums. A duck boat killed a pedestrian in Chinatown last year, and her family is being represented by the same lawyer who won $17 million for families involved in a deadly 2010 tugboat-duck boat crash. Lawyer Robert J. Mongeluzzi told the Inquirer, “They are inappropriate for city streets, they’re a danger on the land and on the water, and I’m glad to see them go.” He added: “You don’t promote tourism by killing tourists.”

Between January and June almost 18,000 people died on U.S. roadways, up more than 10 percent from the same period last year, according to new estimates released this week by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The Washington Post report looks at the deadly trend and notes if the uptick continues through December, “2016 will see the largest percentage increase in traffic fatalities since the 1960s.” To combat these traffic deaths, the federal government is starting a Vision Zero task force called Road to Zero Coalition with the goal of bringing traffic fatalities to zero in 30 years and $3 million in seed money for Vision Zero-oriented projects.

Starting in May, Icelandair will be the fifth foreign carrier added to PHL Airport in the last three years, reports Kenneth Hilario.

At a Center City Proprietor’s Association panel, a set of Philly’s younger developers – Philip Balderson (Odin Properties), Gary Jonas, Jr. (How Property Development), David Landskroner (High Top Real Estate), Noah Ostroff (PhillyLiving), Lindsey Scannapieco (Scout) – talked shop about the challenges and opportunities of development in Philly, University City Review reports.

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