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Posted: Thursday, November 21, 2013 10:30 am | Updated: 10:38 am, Wed Nov 27, 2013.

Police shootings on the rise last year, official report says

New York City police shot and killed 16 people in 2012, nearly double the nine who were slain the year before and the highest number during the Bloomberg administration, according to new NYPD statistics released Tuesday.

Thirteen officers were wounded by firearms last year, the report said, none fatally.

The spike in shooting incidents may be an anomaly, however. Police officials said that so far this year, seven people have been killed by the NYPD, according to a report in The New York Times. At this point last year, 15 of the 16 had been killed.

The Times article, which cited department spokesman John McCarthy as the source for this year’s figures, said six officers have been wounded by gunfire so far in 2013, with none of them killed.

Back to the future for ex-top cop Bratton?

Former Police Commissioner Bill Bratton, who served during the Giuliani administration and introduced CompStat, the crime-tracking system credited with helping the city reduce violence dramatically over the last two decades, may get back on the job.

Bratton told the New York Post that he sat down with Mayor-Elect Bill de Blasio to discuss the possibility on Tuesday. Chief of Department Phillip Banks is also a contender.

CompStat is a system that developed from something the Transit Police were using before the department became part of the NYPD.

Could flood insurance hikes be even worse?

Many South Queens and Rockaway residents are faced with the possibility of their flood insurance premiums jumping from as little as $400 a year to as much as $12,000 under new rules taking effect in the National Flood Insurance Program. There is an effort in Congress to delay the hikes, but the bill has not yet passed either house.

And it could get even worse for homeowners in areas hit by storms such as Hurricane Sandy. The Daily News reported on Wednesday that the director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Craig Fugate, told Congress that flood insurance premiums in the city could go as high as $31,500. The article did not say, however, if Fugate specified which areas of the city could see increases that high.

New school progress reports now available

The city Department of Education released this year’s school progress reports last week. The reports assign a letter grade to each school and include passed grades and other data.

Chancellor Dennis Walcott said this year’s reports show that more students are graduating high school prepared for college. For example, he said, the four-year college readiness rate is up nearly three points since last year, from 28.6 percent to 31.4 percent. Since 2005, the percent of students graduating college-ready in four years has nearly doubled.

The full reports are available at the DOE’s website, schools.nyc.gov. To see them, go to the “News/Announcements” section on the right side of the page and find the headline “Chancellor Walcott Announces More Students are Graduating High School Ready for College and Careers as Part of 2012-13 Progress Report Release for All Grades.”

Smoking age now 21

The legal age to purchase cigarettes and other tobacco products in the city is now 21, since Mayor Bloomberg signed a bill raising it from 18 on Tuesday. There is no law against underage people smoking, but it is illegal to sell them cigarettes and other such products. Electronic cigarettes are included in the law. City Councilman James Gennaro (D-Fresh Meadows), who sponsored the bill, said it marks a key step in reducing youth smoking. New York is the first major city to set the age at 21.

— compiled by Peter C. Mastrosimone

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