Rent!

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• The Rent Guidelines Board last night split the difference between a tenants' proposal and one from landlords and settled on renewal increases of 3 and 5 percent for one- and two-year leases, respectively, in rent-stabilized apartments. Both sides, predictably enough, railed against the decision. [NYP]

• Rebecca Charles of Pearl Oyster Bar is taking former sous-chef Ed McFarland to court for being so brazen as to open his own clam shack, supposedly "derivative" of hers. No word on whether the state of Maine plans to file a similar suit against her. [NYT]
• In a kind of sequel to yesterday's landmark study revealing that subway trains are sometimes packed, the Citizens Budget Commission notes today that parks in rich neighborhoods are nicer than those in poor neighborhoods. Shocking! [NYT]
• Bloomberg once again "secretly" gave $30 million to the Carnegie Corporation to distribute to nonprofits. And once again we wonder why he doesn’t give us any money. [NYP]
• Police Commish Ray Kelly touted "one of the largest fireworks seizures" ever in New York City — a Sheepshead Bay bust that netted 9,000 pounds of pyrotechnics. The mother-in-law of one of the five men arrested wasn't convinced: "He's not a gangster. What's the big deal with fireworks? Why make such a big deal about it?" [amNY]
• And a Manhattan money manager and ten of his colleagues have raised $1 million dollars to post bail for a 21-year-old Georgia man they've never met — he was sentenced to ten years in prison for a blow job he received from a 15-year-old girl — though he was only 17 at the time. Finance guys: selflessly keeping the world safe for blow jobs. [Metro NY]