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A matter of trust

Bill Ritter's daily take on the news.

March 15, 2012 1:20:48 PM PDT
We send our kids to school and trust - often blindly - that they'll be okay. This year in New York City public schools has proven that we can't really do that anymore.

At least 7 examples of sexual assault or inappropriate contact and touching with students have been logged. And then this afternoon, the floodgates opened even more. The Dept. of Education acknowledged that, in the past two weeks, 8 school employees have either been reassigned or fired after reviewing the files of sex abuse cases.

It is hard to call this anything other than scandalous.

Tonight Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott - talking about how things will change, but there are many parents who wonder about the safety of their kids on campus.

It's a big story, and we'll have the latest, tonight at 11.

Also at 11, on the heels of the new HBO series "Luck" with Dustin Hoffman getting cancelled after three horses died during production, New York's racing industry is coming under scrutiny. Gov. Cuomo today called on the Racing Assn. to hire an outside investigator to look into the recent deaths of 16 horses at Aqueduct race track.

On another front, there's a quid pro quo for most public employees. Work for the government for less money than you could make in the private sector, and the trade-off will be a chunky retirement plan, with health care and a fat pension. It's worked for teachers and firefighters and police and the rest of the public employee workforce.

And it's worked for taxpayers - as long as the economy grew every year. But the new century has brought a new reality, and economic growth has been an elusive concept. Paying the pensions of all those workers - especially with life expectancy increasing - has become a financial burden.

There are certainly no guarantees like that for private-sector workers.

Now, Gov. Cuomo has carved out a pension reform package. Rightly, it doesn't renege on past agreements, but it will hurt those who sign up for public employment in the future.

Maybe it's time we bring these jobs up to private-sector wages, and level the playing fields of the two sectors?

I'm just sayin'.

We'll have the latest in Mr. Cuomo's growing list of political victories, tonight at 11.

Also at 11, we take a closer look at the incredible safety features in new cars - like those warning lights on side mirrors if you're getting too close to something. So how do they really work? Consumer Reports goes to the test track for us.

We'll also have any breaking news of the night, plus Meteorologist Lee Goldberg's AccuWeather forecast, and Rob Powers with the night's sports. I hope you can join Sade Baderinwa and me, tonight at 11.


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