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Daily Audio Newscast - June 17, 2024

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News from around the nation.

Audio file

Young New Yorkers prioritize living-wage jobs at the ballot box; Community Action Agencies celebrate 60 years, renew calls to battle poverty; Financial-justice advocates criticize crypto regulation bill; Tug-of-war for more access to IL streams continues.


The Public News Service Dela Newscast for June the 17th, 2024.

I'm Mike Clifford.

A new report finds New York's rising cost of living and having living wage jobs are priority issues for young voters.

Research shows a single person has to make almost $27 per hour to afford to live in New York State.

On average, tipped wage workers make almost $18 an hour with tips.

One way to help young voters is eliminating the $10 sub-minimum wage.

Saru Jayaraman with One Fair Wage says this could slow down so-called tipflation.

As long as the restaurant industry gets this exemption that they don't have to pay the minimum wage, every other industry that's facing staffing crises, rather than doing what they should be doing of raising wages, they are also attempting to introduce tipping as a way to replace what they really need to do, which is to raise wages.

A bill ending the sub-minimum wage for restaurant workers has been introduced in New York's legislature but faces opposition from groups such as the National Restaurant Organization.

Restaurants in different states are seeing dividends from paying workers a full minimum wage with tips.

Several states have ballot measures this year for voters to decide whether to end the sub-minimum wage.

I'm Edwin J. Vieira.

Studies show female tip workers in states using the federal sub-minimum wage experience sexual harassment twice as often.

Meantime, police identified Michael William Nash, age 42, as the gunman who opened fire at the Rochester Hills splash pad and injured nine people, that from the Oakland County Sheriff's Office.

Investigators still do not know why Nash of Shelby Township went to the splash pad.

Nash was described by police as walking calmly back to his car after the mass shooting.

Click on Detroit Reports police tracked Nash at home Saturday night in Shelby.

When sheriff's deputies entered the home, Nash was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.

Community action agencies in Utah and across the nation are celebrating 60 years of battling poverty.

Jennifer Godfrey with Utah Community Action says there are a total of nine community action agencies in the Beehive State, with each one aiming to help Utahns in their own unique way.

She adds all nine organizations have the ability to provide services that can change people's lives.

Not only is it incredibly humbling to be a part of that work, but it's also such an honor to be working with these individuals who are experiencing poverty, because everybody deserves a second chance from time to time.

Godfrey says people who experience poverty aren't a monolith.

She says because poverty is a complex issue, there isn't a single reason behind it for many people.

In Utah, Native Americans experience the highest rate of poverty at just above 27 percent.

I'm Alex Gonzalez reporting.

Utah's poverty rate sits just below 9 percent, which is below the national average of around 12 percent.

This is Public News Service.

Next to California, where a startup is blending artificial intelligence with an ancient Japanese method of fish processing.

More in this Sentiment Solutions journalism, California News Service collaboration.

Process is called ekejime, which means brain spike.

It kills the fish more quickly and with less pain when performed correctly.

Lynn Sneddon is a lecturer at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, who has researched fish pain for more than two decades.

She says most fish caught commercially experience very painful deaths, but that is changing.

If that is done incredibly quickly, it's more humane than the animals, for example, just suffocating and dying on deck of a boat.

Some species, it can take up to 15 minutes for a fish to die.

Ekejime was developed in the early 1600s, but it was revived in the 1970s as the fishing industry began looking for ways to kill fish in a more humane fashion.

Currently, artificial intelligence is used to evaluate the fish and insert a spike directly into the brain, quickly ending its life.

Mark Richardson reporting.

Meantime, federal law and Illinois law are at odds over ownership, access and use of the state's streams, lakes and rivers.

A fraction of the waterways fall under Illinois law, which permits public access.

Federal law allows private ownership of most of Illinois waterways.

House Bill 4708, which saw little action in the 2024 legislative session, proposes that any lake, river or stream that can support commercial or recreational activities should have open access.

The Illinois Environmental Council wants the bill passed.

Land Use Programs Director Elliott Clay is optimistic lawmakers will hear the bill in the future.

We've still got a ways to go in terms of passing this.

We had gotten it into the legislature this last year, and we definitely intend on bringing this back up, especially during the next legislative session in 2025.

There was pretty stiff opposition to this bill, especially from the agricultural communities.

I'm Terry Dee reporting.

Finally, from a Mike Bowen, on average, nearly 40 percent of traffic fatality victims in Minnesota are 55 and older.

The Minnesota legislature has approved cutting in half the driver safety class hours Minnesota seniors are required to take to get an auto insurance discount.

Supporters note that class participation is lagging, with only 30 percent of those eligible signing up.

Joe Biernat of the Minnesota Highway Safety and Research Center says with an aging population, more older drivers will likely be on the roads, but not enough are up to speed on evolving traffic trends and rules.

Minnesota spends so much money on infrastructure every year, but we spend very little on the driver that uses that infrastructure.

Biernat acknowledges it might be a challenge fitting all the necessary information into a reduced class schedule.

This is Mike Clifford, and thank you for starting your week with Public News Service.

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