The Storm after the Calm...

Behind The News
February 22, 2008 12:42:01 PM PST
So it snowed more than we thought it would. It's amazing how a milder-than-normal winter makes so many people forget how to walk and drive in bad weather. Which is to say - slower and more carefully. I know. I walked and drove in the storm.

Fortunately, with a million New York City school kids out for the week, traffic wasn't as bad as it would otherwise be. And while there's always the jerk out there who insist on driving as if the streets and roads weren't slippery -- yes there were many spin outs and fender benders -- most people adjusted with aplomb. Many adjusted, wisely, by staying home.

It's by far the biggest snow storm of the season; but the bar isn't very high on this topic. After all, we had about 4 inches of snow before today.

Lee Goldberg is tracking the storm for us tonight at 11 - and what it means for the weekend weather. And we have reporters out in the field, covering how the clean up is going.

And here's an interesting little factoid: It costs New York City $1 million for every inch of snow we get, and officials budget about $35 million a year for snow removal and street clearing. We're way way way under budget this year.

Also at 11, the Mets are now a $140 million a year team. That salary -- still about two-thirds of the Yankees payroll. But apparently the folks who run the Mets Baseball Academy -- a youth baseball camp -- aren't nearly as free with their money. The Academy -- operated not by the Mets, but by a company that pays to use the Mets name -- requires a 30-day notice for refunds.

So when little Timmy LaRocca of Long Island broke his arm last August, one day before camp started, his mom appealed to one of the men who runs the camp. He said sure - the check, for $300, is in the mail. Only it wasn't.

She asked him again in November. He promised to mail it again. In fact he said he did mail it. But it never arrived. Must have disappeared, he said.

But then Timmy's mom called Tappy Phillips and 7 On Your Side. And guess what? Of course, a happy ending. Tappy's story, tonight at 11.

And you can exhale now -- the wait is over. The George W. Bush Presidential Library will be located in ...... drum roll please .... Dallas, at Southern Methodist University. There had been a handful of campuses in Texas that wanted to host the library -- and the politics of the bidding got a little bizarre. Imagine that in Texas.

Not by coincidence, Dallas is where Mr. Bush will live when he leaves the White House.

I'm trying to research the issue -- but I don't think New York City was in the running for 43's library.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Scott Clark and Marvell Scott with the night's sports. I hope you can join Liz Cho and me, tonight at 11, right after 20/20.

And a couple of notes -- Liz and I, along with Lee and Scott will be here Oscar night this Sunday - updating the night's news during the Academy Awards, and with a full newscast after the Oscars.

And this column will be on hiatus on Monday and Tuesday. The Behind The News reason? We have a promo shoot that happens right on the deadline time for this column.

Enjoy your weekend!

BILL RITTER


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