Paul Ryan is pictured.
Yuri Gripas/Reuters

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What’s the GOP getting for Christmas: The holiday scramble begins this week for Republicans in Congress, as the GOP aims to pass a tax bill and get a budget deal to avoid a government shutdown by the end of the week. The tax plan’s final language emerged Friday and many small tax credit programs were spared from previously drafted cuts. Kriston Capps writes that even with the updates, the bill presents a challenge to addressing America’s continuing inequality:

So while Congress avoided some of the worst-possible outcomes with this bill with regard to affordable housing, municipal development, infrastructure, and transit, it still makes all these things harder to do. ... In broad strokes, the Republican tax reform bill means that your city and state just got a budget cut.

The cap on state and local tax deductions will still hit high-tax states like California and New York, making it harder to raise revenue in urban areas without such a subsidy.

Delta blues: Speaking of holiday scrambles, the world’s busiest airport, Atlanta’s Hartsfield-Jackson International, has restored power after a 12-hour outage Sunday that delayed about 5,100 flights. Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed said an electrical fire started in a Georgia Power underground electrical facility, damaging two substations that serve the airport.

After the storm: Puerto Rico’s governor has ordered a review of every death on the island since Hurricane Maria. The official count of 64 is far below the figures compiled by news agencies. After three months, parts of the island are still without power—and now the island faces a looming foreclosure crisis. CityLab context: Is solar the answer to Puerto Rico's blackout?

Just in: Reports of an Amtrak derailment just outside of Seattle on I-5. Check CityLab later for more on this story.


More on CityLab

Teaching Civility in the Age of Trump

As bias incidents at American schools surge, one Maryland high school requires all freshman to take a new course designed to encourage open minds and civil dialogue.

Stories From the Rust Belt, For the Rust Belt

“I think it’s important for these writers to say, ‘Look, your creativity, your writing, your research, your journalism, matters just as much in Pittsburgh as it does in New York and D.C.”

Switzerland's Border-Busting Streetcar Rolls Into France and Germany

A new extension makes it the world’s only tri-national tram system.

What Can Cities and States Do About Net Neutrality?

The plans so far are to be defiant and take the FCC to court. Beyond that, there’s a limited slate of options.

The Ambitious Design and Low Density of Toronto's Newest Subway Stations

Despite its shortcomings, the scope of the 5.3-mile Spadina line addition is ambitious.

L.A.'s Air Pollution May Be Harming Teen Brains

A new study from the University of Southern California suggests a link between air pollution and adolescent delinquency.

Why Don't America's Rich Give More to Charity?

They could certainly afford to donate bigger sums, but something seems to be holding them back.

The Urban Lens:

Instagram photo from @rznagle

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What We’re Reading

No halt to evictions around the country as temperature fall (NPR)

What Target’s CEO thinks about the ‘retail apocalypse’ (Bloomberg)

Ford’s new start-up-style base in Detroit (New York Times)

‘Innovations that made the city’ is like an advent calendar for urbanists (Sidewalk Labs)

Will the suburbs swing the House to Democrats in 2018? (New York Times)


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