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Feds: Right whales should remain on endangered list

Feds: Right whales should remain on endangered list

As the North Atlantic right whale nears the end of a year of dangerously high mortality, federal ocean regulators are calling for it to remain listed as endangered, according to a report released Friday. Less than 500 of the right whales exist, and scientists have said at least 15 of them have died since the spring off the coast of U.S. and Canada. Many of the deaths were attributed to vessel strikes and entanglement in fishing gear. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s five-ye…
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Hawaii boat crash spurs new concerns about foreign fishermen

A boat that ran aground off Honolulu while transporting foreign fishermen to work in Hawaii’s commercial fishing industry has raised new questions about the safety and working conditions for foreign laborers in this unique U.S. fleet. A long, cramped journey to the United States for a group of fishermen from Vietnam, Indonesia, Philippines and Kiribati ended with a U.S. Coast Guard rescue last week after their fishing vessel smashed into a reef just off Waikiki’s shore. No one aboard the boat called for help after the crash. A 2016 Associated Press investigation revealed the Hawaii fleet exploits a loophole in federal law to employ men from impoverished Southeast Asian and Pacific nations for a fraction of the pay an American worker would get, with some making as little as 70 cents an hour. Under the law, U.S. citizens must make up 75 percent of the crew on most American commercial fishing boats. But in Hawaii, the loophole carved out to support one of the state’s biggest industries exempts commercial fishing boat owners from federal rules enforced almost everywhere else. The men do not have authorization to enter the United States, so they are confined to boats while docked in Honolulu and not eligible for most basic labor protections. The AP report revealed instances of abuse and claims of human trafficking among the fleet. When the Pacific Paradise ran aground just before midnight Oct. 10, eyewitnesses saw the wreck, and authorities raced to rescue the men with jet skis, boats and a helicopter. The 79-foot boat carried 19 foreign men and a captain, who officials say was the only U.S. citizen aboard. The 20 men were at sea for at least 12 days before they crashed, the minimum time it would take to get from American Samoa to Hawaii, according to two fishing industry experts. The Coast Guard would not confirm how long the vessel was at sea. Once rescued, the men met U.S. customs officials and were escorted to a pier to begin work on other boats. Customs and Border Protection said privacy restrictions prevented the agency from “disclosing the names of passengers, crew members and other law-abiding travelers,” spokesman Frank Falcon said in an email. Customs officials deny entry to foreign workers, but Hawaii uses federal forms stamped “refused” as proof that they are legally allowed to work after going through customs and therefore can be given fishing licenses, the AP found. The state Department of Land and Natural Resources provided fishing license records for the vessel, including the captain who was born in Vietnam and is now a U.S. citizen living in Hawaii and four foreign crew members. Hawaii state Rep. Kaniela Ing said he was concerned that only five fishing licenses were registered with the state. The 15 other workers “are completely unaccounted for, and we don’t know where they are and what they’re doing here,” he said. The vessel wasn’t carrying any fish when it crashed, the Coast Guard said. “The issue isn’t whether or not there’s evidence that they’re being trafficked, it’s that there’s no evidence to the contrary,” Ing said. “There’s nothing saying these folks are here legally and aren’t being exploited because there’s no record.” He tried in vain to get tightened regulations passed last year and may introduce legislation again but said the longline fishing industry is powerful because people love sushi. The boat is owned by Honolulu-based TWOL LLC. A man who answered a phone number associated with the company identified himself as part-owner David Tran and referred questions to his lawyer, Brian Ho. Ho refused to answer questions Wednesday. State Division of Aquatic Resources Administrator Bruce Anderson said it was unusual for a fishing boat to be in the crash area, which has no charted shipping lanes and where fishing isn’t allowed. “Either they missed the harbor or perhaps they had some mechanical problems and drifted ashore, or it was just careless seamanship, the captain was drunk or asleep or whoever was at the helm didn’t realize that they were as close to shore as they were,” Anderson said. The Coast Guard would not comment, citing its ongoing investigation. Steve Kokinos, president of Ocean Marine Brokerage Services in Louisiana, said the crash seemed suspicious. “If they’re not calling for help … they didn’t want authorities around them, they were hoping they could probably get it off or they could disappear into the night,” Kokinos said. He also thought it would be difficult to have 20 people on a vessel its size. “I would be surprised if there were more than 10 bunks, unless they had done some modifications to the boat,” Kokinos said, adding the conditions for the foreign workers were “probably deplorable.” Sean Martin, president of the Hawaii Longline Association, an industry group, said officials closely monitor vessels when departing and returning to pick up crews. Boats must go to designated piers at the direction of state and federal officials and give 120 hours advance notice of arrival when returning from American Samoa with foreign crews, he said. The Hawaii fleet’s treatment of foreign fishermen has led environmental and advocacy groups to file a complaint with the Inter-American Human Rights Commission, an autonomous body of the Organization of American States, which works to protect human rights. The U.S. is a member of that organization. The complaint asks the commission to determine the responsibility of the U.S. government for human rights abuses against foreign workers in Hawaii.
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The Latest: States suing to force insurance subsidy payments

The Latest: States suing to force insurance subsidy payments

The Latest on President Donald Trump and health care legislation (all times local): 10 p.m. A bipartisan group of governors is urging congressional leaders to support a plan to calm health insurance markets after President Donald Trump blocked federal subsidies to insurers. The letter, signed by 10 governors, says, “Stabilizing insurance markets is one of the primary areas where Congress can take action to ensure that consumers have affordable health care options.” The agreement by Sens. Lamar …
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Confusion over open meetings creates unrest on constitution panel

Can members of the powerful panel that has the authority to put constitutional amendments directly on the November 2018 ballot discuss votes in secret and lobby each other? That is the question Indian River County Commissioner Bob Solari has been trying to get answered for six months. Now, his failure to get an answer, he said, could spell trouble for the commission. As a member of the Constitution Revision Commission, Solari left the June 6 meeting of the commission baffled and confused. The m…
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Retired Vermont AG ready for deposition in records case

Retired Vermont Attorney General William Sorrell said Wednesday he was ready to be deposed by lawyers seeking information about public business he might have conducted from his private email account in a case that could have broader public policy implications for former public officials. Sorrell made the comments after Washington County Superior Court Judge Mary Miles Teachout ruled Wednesday that keeping information on a private email account was akin to keeping work correspondence in a desk d…
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2 indicted in fatal fentanyl OD death in Miami County

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No masks or water bottles: What to know ahead of Richard Spencer’s speech at UF

Tensions are rising in the small college town of Gainesville as law enforcement, faculty and students alike prepare for Richard Spencer, a white nationalist and self-described leader of the so-called “alt-right,” to speak at the University of Florida. Spencer’s initial request to speak at the school was denied, but the university relented under the threat of legal action and allowed Spencer to rent the Phillips Center from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Thursday. Auburn University, the last school …
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Pictured: The tragic eight-year-old girl who died after falling from second-story balcony inside …

Pictured: The tragic eight-year-old girl who died after falling from second-story balcony inside …

An eight-year-old girl who died after falling from a cruise ship balcony while it was docked at a port in Miami has been identified.  Investigators said Zion Smith, 8, fell off the second storey deck of the Carnival Cruise ship Glory around 8.15am ET Saturday morning.  Now her family is demanding answers. Scroll down for video    Damien Fox, the girl’s uncle, told ABC Local 10 he also wanted to see surveillance video from inside the ship.   He described Zion – who is from Nassau in the…
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Democrats accuse EPA’s Pruitt of misusing taxpayer funds

Top-ranking Congressional Democrats are calling on a federal watchdog to review whether Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt broke the law by making a video for a private group opposing an Obama-era clean-water rule. Pruitt flew to Colorado for an August event organized by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, an industry trade association representing cattle producers. While at the ranch, Pruitt recorded a video urging the group’s members to file comments supporting the repeal of EPA’s Waters of the United States rule. The 2015 rule seeks to expand the agency’s jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act to include smaller streams and wetlands. In a letter sent last week, the top Democrats on four committees with oversight of EPA asked the head of the Government Accountability Office to issue a formal legal ruling on whether Pruitt’s participation in the video violated federal rules. They cited longstanding prohibitions against federal officials using taxpayer funds “for publicity or propaganda purposes, and for the preparation, distribution or use of any kit, pamphlet, booklet, publication, radio, television, or film presentation designed to support or defeat legislation pending before the Congress.” EPA did not respond to messages seeking comment about the letter or provide the total cost to taxpayers for his trip. The Associated Press and other media outlets have previously reported about Pruitt’s frequent westward travel, which often occurs on Thursdays and Fridays to allow the EPA chief to spend weekends at his home in Oklahoma. Records show Pruitt typically travels with at least two aides and members of his full-time security detail. EPA’s inspector general is currently reviewing the “frequency, cost, and extent” of Pruitt’s trips to determine whether they adhere to federal travel polices. The trip to Colorado was billed by EPA as part of Pruitt’s “State Action Tour” to rally opposition to Obama-era environmental regulations. In the video, Pruitt criticizes the WOTUS rule as an example of federal overreach, redefining the Clean Water Act to cover “a puddle, a dry creek bed and ephemeral drainage ditches across this country.” The video was posted on YouTube and on the Beef Association’s website, along with language urging the ranchers to “Urge Congress to Stop EPA’s Unlawful Expansion” and “Let your Congressional representatives know that they should not allow EPA … to trample on your Constitutional rights.” “EPA effectively constructed a message, delivered by the Administrator, and intended for the NCBA to distribute that message through an online video,” the Democrats said. “Additionally, the viewing audience may be unable to discern the source of that message, because in the video, the EPA Administrator’s image, name, and title appear alongside the name and logo of the NCBA.” The letter was signed by Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon, the ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure; Rep. Betty McCollum of Minnesota, the ranking Democrat on the Committee on Appropriations Subcommittee on Interior and Environment; Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. of New Jersey, the ranking Democrat on the Committee on Energy and Commerce; and Rep. Elijah Cummings of Maryland, the ranking Democrat on the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform. GAO spokesman Chuck Young confirmed the letter had been received, but said it would likely be weeks before any decision is made about whether to issue the legal ruling sought by the Democrats. Colin Woodall, the senior vice president for government affairs at the Beef Association, said EPA had asked to group to organize an event where Pruitt could appear with stakeholders in the ranching community.” “In advance of the visit, NCBA requested an interview with Administrator Pruitt and worked with the EPA Office of Public Affairs to arrange the interview at the event,” Woodall said. “In the unscripted interview, Administrator Pruitt explains his State Action Tour and encourages stakeholders to submit comments on the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. NCBA filmed, edited, and published the video without any direction from EPA.” Follow Associated Press environmental writer Michael Biesecker at http://twitter.com/mbieseck More than a quarter-million people follow Tim MacRae, as “Timmac,” on a platform called Twitch. They make it possible for him to play video games and make a living doing it. Here, he offers insight into how playing video games can translate into a six-figure salary.
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Justice Dept. to help in Iowa case of slain transgender teen

The Justice Department has sent a federal hate crimes lawyer to Iowa to help prosecute a man charged with killing a transgender teenager last year, an unusual decision by Attorney General Jeff Sessions even as he takes other steps to erode the rights of transgender people broadly. The case involves Jorge Sanders-Galvez, 23, who is charged with killing 16-year-old Kedarie Johnson in Burlington, Iowa, in March 2016. Authorities have not disclosed a motive, but Johnson’s relatives say he may have …
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Family of girl who fell to death on cruise ship searching for answers

MIAMI – The great uncle of an 8-year-old girl who fell to her death on a Carnival Cruise Line ship Saturday said the family is searching for answers in the girl’s death. “We are here in Miami to find answers, to find what happened aboard the ship,” Damien Fox told Local 10 News in an exclusive interview Sunday. More Miami Headlines Girl dies after falling in cruise ship at PortMiami The Miami-Dade Police Department said Zion Smith fell from a deck inside the Carnival Glory cruise …
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Deadline on probe of Phoenix police immigration policy looms

The Arizona attorney general on Monday found that the Phoenix Police Department was not violating a state law that requires officers to inquire about the legal status of people they suspect of being illegally in the country. Republican Sen. John Kavanagh complained last month that a new police policy illegally restricted when officers can make those inquiries and violates Arizona’s 2010 law known as SB1070. Attorney General Mark Brnovich issued a written decision that rejected Kavanagh’s compla…
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Twitter CEO vows to police sexual harassment, hate, violence

Twitter CEO vows to police sexual harassment, hate, violence

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey is promising the company will do a better job weeding out sexual harassment, hateful symbols and violent groups from its short messaging service. The pledge issued in a series of tweets late Friday followed a boycott organized by women supporting actress Rose McGowan after she said Twitter temporarily suspended her account for posting about the alleged misconduct of film producer Harvey Weinstein. The movie mogul was fired last Sunday by the company he co-founded amid ac…
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Will Johnson cleared to play for Orlando City

Will Johnson has been cleared to play for Orlando City after prosecutors decided not to pursue domectic violence charges against the Canadian midfielder. Major League Soccer said Friday that Johnson reached a verbal agreement with the state to enter a yearlong diversion program that includes a 26-week domestic violence program. Johnson has already served a five-game suspension. He returned to training Monday. Johnson was arrested and charged with domestic battery Sept. 6. Orlando City holes the…
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The Latest: Sheriff: Violence part of NC prison break plan

The Latest on an attempted escape from a North Carolina prison that killed two employees (all times local): 5:30 p.m. North Carolina’s governor is ordering extra safety measures after an attempted prison breakout left two corrections officers dead and a dozen other prison workers and inmates injured. Gov. Roy Cooper on Friday suspended the inmate work program at Pasquotank Correctional Institution in Elizabeth City, the scene of Thursday’s attempted escape by four inmates. Authorities said the …
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79-foot fishing vessel runs aground off Oahu, 20 men rescued

79-foot fishing vessel runs aground off Oahu, 20 men rescued

The U.S. Coast Guard rescued 19 foreign fishermen and their American captain from a 79-foot (24-meter) U.S.-flagged commercial fishing vessel that ran aground off the shore of Waikiki Tuesday night. Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer Sara Muir said Wednesday that officials are working to get diesel fuel off the boat, which carries 13,000 gallons (49,210 liters) of gas and hydraulic oils. There was no sign that any fuel or other hazardous materials had leaked into the water, Muir said. Officials di…
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You won’t need live bait anymore with this invention

Anglers want live bait to catch as much as you can out there. But it’s not always easy to snag a small, live fish, is it? Help is on the way from Boston based startup Magurobotics: Zombait. A play on the words “zombie” and “bait,” this newfangled tool is a robotic fishing lure which makes dead bait look alive and swimming. Just insert a Zombait electronic lure into the mouth of a dead fish, attach your hook, and watch it go. Magurobotics launched the device at the fishing expo ICAST i…
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Irma-Related Lawsuits Against FP&L Smell Like Greed and Petty Politics

Irma-Related Lawsuits Against FP&L Smell Like Greed and Petty Politics

In the days following Hurricane Irma, a handful of elected officials across the state became inundated with calls from frustrated constituents who were still waiting for power to be restored. The politicians, thinking only of how Irma’s damage could hurt them at the ballot box, started pointing the finger of blame at the power companies, setting arbitrary deadlines for power to be restored, and threatened lawsuits. Hurricane Irma couldn’t have taken a more destructive path for the s…
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Miami startup raises $1M to provide affordable legal services online

Miami startup Court Buddy has raised $1 million, a milestone event that puts the company among just 14 to have raised seven figures or more in …
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No charges for man who asked if US senator’s child kidnapped

A man who was kicked out of a televised town hall for asking Republican U.S. Sen. Pat Toomey an unsettling question about whether his daughter had been kidnapped won’t face charges, a prosecutor said Monday. Simon Radecki’s question was inappropriate and offensive but was within the bounds of free speech, District Attorney John Morganelli said, overruling police who initially planned to charge him. Radecki, a 28-year-old activist, was picked ahead of time to be one of Toomey’s questioners at the Aug. 31 event at a PBS station in Bethlehem. When it was his turn, he thanked Toomey for taking questions but then veered off-script and said: “I know we’ve been here a while. You probably haven’t seen the news. Can you confirm whether or not your daughter Bridget has been kidnapped?” Police yanked Radecki off stage as he continued, “The reason I ask is because that’s the reality of families that suffer deportation … .” Nothing happened to Toomey’s daughter, and Toomey called it a “ridiculous question.” The rest of the town hall went on without incident. Radecki said Monday he was trying to make a point about the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, or DACA. President Donald Trump recently ended the Obama-era program, which shielded from deportation nearly 800,000 young immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children, and gave Congress six months to come up with a replacement. Bethlehem police initially told Radecki he would be charged, but Morganelli told them to hold off while he reviewed the case. The prosecutor said he considered two charges — disrupting a public meeting and disorderly conduct — and concluded that Radecki broke no law. “Clearly, Mr. Radecki’s question was stated in a callous manner without regard for what impact it might have on Senator Toomey” or his family, Morganelli said. “Nevertheless, the criminal law cannot be utilized to remedy insensitive conduct.” Morganelli, a Democrat, informed Toomey of his decision via text. Toomey replied that he understood, the prosecutor said. Toomey’s spokesman, Steve Kelly, called Radecki’s question “reprehensible” and “inherently threatening,” but he said the senator accepted Morganelli’s legal judgment. Witold Walczak, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union’s Pennsylvania chapter, said Morganelli made the right call. “The government can’t prosecute people for asking elected officials dumb, provocative or even offensive questions, just like prosecutors can’t charge politicians for making stupid and insulting statements (boy would they be busy!),” Walczak said via email. “Freedom of speech doesn’t always produce kind, thoughtful and wise expression.” Radecki works for Make the Road Pennsylvania, an advocacy group for Hispanic immigrants. He said the hypothetical question was planned by the group and was meant to convey how thousands of immigrant parents fear their children will be deported. Asked how he felt about Morganelli’s decision, Radecki said: “My friends who are DACA recipients are way more on my mind than what happened today. My concern (is) about what could happen to them in the next few months or next few years, the tons and tons of people who now need to prepare for who knows what.” Toomey has said that while people brought to the U.S. illegally as children are “not at fault and deserve our support,” President Barack Obama didn’t have legal authority to create the DACA program. He called on Congress to pass a comprehensive immigration overhaul that includes an accommodation for young immigrants.
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Court: Inmate fired as law librarian can sue for retaliation

A federal appeals court has reinstated a lawsuit filed by an inmate who lost his job at a Pennsylvania county jail’s law librarian, allegedly for helping other inmates conduct legal research. The Altoona-Mirror reports Monday that the 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has reinstated Gary Vaughn Jr.’s lawsuit against Cambria County prison officials and the judge who ordered him removed last year. Vaughn ran a pawn shop called Gary’s Steals and Deals and was sentenced earlier this year to federal…
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A look at the president’s immigration demands

President Donald Trump has unveiled a long list of immigration priorities he says must be included as part of any legislative package extending protections for young immigrants brought to the U.S. illegally as children. What the president is demanding from Congress: BORDER SECURITY —Construct a wall along the southern border; increase security on the northern border. —Make it easier to deport unaccompanied minor children caught crossing the border. The U.S. experienced a surge of border cro…
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University of Wisconsin approves protest punishment policy

University of Wisconsin approves protest punishment policy

University of Wisconsin System leaders approved a policy Friday that calls for suspending and expelling students who disrupt campus speeches and presentations, saying students need to listen to all sides of issues and arguments. The Board of Regents adopted the language on a voice vote during a meeting at the University of Wisconsin-Stout in Menomonie. The policy states that students found to have twice engaged in violence or other disorderly conduct that disrupts others’ free speech would be s…
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Bangladesh PM says government will continue to help Rohingya

Bangladesh’s Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said Saturday that her government would continue to support nearly 1 million Rohingya Muslims who have fled neighboring Myanmar to escape violence. Hasina said the government was pursuing a plan to build temporary shelters for the Rohingya on an island with the help of international aid agencies whom she praised for their support. She made the statement at Dhaka airport on her return from New York after attending the U.N. General Assembly session. The U…
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Las Vegas gunman’s vast arsenal included tracer bullets

After five days of scouring the life of Las Vegas gunman Stephen Paddock and chasing 1,000 leads, investigators confessed Friday they still don’t know what drove him to mass murder, and they announced plans to put up billboards appealing for the public’s help. In their effort to find any hint of his motive, investigators were looking into whether he was with a prostitute days before the shooting, scrutinizing cruises he took and trying to make sense of a cryptic note with numbers jotted on it f…
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Police in Maryland report 3 dead in gang-related violence

Three bodies, the victims of gang-related violence, have been found in the county that surrounds Maryland’s capital, and several arrests have been made in the case, police said. Those were the only details Anne Arundel County Police Chief Timothy Altomare offered about the crimes at a news conference he conducted Friday, which he said at the beginning might be “an exercise in frustration.” But the chief repeatedly urged that anyone who is in fear of gangs, which he said are present in each Anne…
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The Latest: Mother of Arizona murder suspect speaks out

The Latest on a quadruple shooting in Casa Grande, Arizona. (all times local): 3:50 p.m. The mother of one of the suspects in a quadruple shooting in Casa Grande, Arizona, says she feels shock, horror and dismay. Mary Lou Rodriguez said in a written statement that she is the mother of Alec Javier Perez, one of two suspects held in the slaying of four people Thursday in the southern Arizona city. Rodriguez says she loves her son but does not condone or accept violent behavior. Rodriguez expresse…
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Legal organization files suit over travel ban documents

Legal organization files suit over travel ban documents

A nonpartisan legal institute filed a lawsuit Monday against the U.S. State Department demanding information and documents about how the United States determined which countries were included in its latest travel restrictions. Late last month, the Trump administration announced the most recent restrictions, which impact citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen — and some Venezuelan government officials and their families. They are to go into effect Oct. 18. The su…
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Four attorneys elected as Members at McDonald Hopkins

CLEVELAND , Oct. 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — McDonald Hopkins LLC has announced the election of four attorneys to the firm’s membership. McDonald Hopkins, with offices in Cleveland , Columbus , Detroit , Chicago , West Palm Beach and Miami , named Alexa Guevara (West Palm Beach ), Joshua Gadharf (Detroit ), Jason Harley (Columbus ) and Ilirjan Pipa (Cleveland ) members, effective October 1, 2017 . “This year we are privileged to recognize and promote four attorneys for their expertise, consistent…
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South Dakota asks Supreme Court to take up sales tax case

South Dakota is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review whether retailers can be required to collect sales taxes in states where they don’t have a physical presence. Attorney General Marty Jackley announced Monday he’s petitioned the high court for review. South Dakota is taking aim at legal rulings issued mostly before the online shopping boom. As internet shopping has grown, states argue it’s costing them unfairly in sales taxes. South Dakota legislators passed a law last year requiring colle…
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Marijuana Prohibition Turns 80

October 2nd Marks Eight Decades of a Failed Policy Eighty years ago, on October 2, 1937, House Bill 6385: The Marihuana Tax Act was enacted as law. The Act for the first time imposed federal criminal penalties on activities specific to the possession, production, and sale of cannabis – thus ushering in the modern era of federal prohibition. “The ongoing enforcement of marijuana prohibition financially burdens taxpayers, encroaches upon civil liberties, engenders disrespect for the law, and…
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Pazos Law Group, PA, Opens New Boca Raton Office led by Senior Associate Emerald Williams …

WESTON, Fla. , Oct. 2, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Congratulations to founding partner, Nadia Pazos, Esq. and Pazos Law Group, P.A., on the expansion of the firm to Boca Raton . Senior Associate, Emerald Williams, Esq. will be leading the Boca Raton office located at 2500 North Military Trail, Suite 120. Ms. Williams brings a wealth of family law experience and an extensive litigation background which she gained while working as a senior assistant attorney general for the state of Florida . Pazos Law …
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Black farmer sues to block Florida from issuing set-aside medical marijuana license

Black farmer sues to block Florida from issuing set-aside medical marijuana license

An African American farmer out of Panama City is suing the state to block the issuance of a medical marijuana license set aside for minorities on the grounds that a new law cut him out of the deal. Columbus Smith, 80, says he can’t bid on the Florida Department of Health’s cultivation license reserved for members of the Florida chapter of the Black Farmers and Agriculturalists Association because the private association won’t allow new members to join. He says the association stopped acce…
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Trump pardon pains those who feel like Joe Arpaio’s victims

Former Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio is taking a victory lap now that President Donald Trump has pardoned his recent conviction, giving political speeches, raising money and boasting he’s been vindicated following a politically motivated prosecution. To people like Joe Atencio, the pardon for a misdemeanor contempt-of-court conviction ended the only real accountability for a lawman accused of a range of misconduct over his 24 years as metro Phoenix’s sheriff. Atencio’s son was killed in a 2011 alt…
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Trump weighing options as travel ban nears expiration date

President Donald Trump is weighing the next iteration of his controversial travel ban, which could include new, more tailored restrictions on travelers from additional countries. The Department of Homeland Security has recommended the president impose the new, targeted restrictions on foreign nationals from countries it says refuse to share sufficient information with the U.S. or haven’t taken necessary security precautions. The restrictions could vary by country, officials said. Trump’s ban on…
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Colorado: Some low-level radioactive waste handled illegally

Some types of low-level radioactive waste have been illegally buried in landfills that are not approved to handle them because of a contradiction in state laws, Colorado health officials said Friday. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment said the Legislature needs to change the laws so the agency has the authority to regulate the waste. The problem was first reported by The Denver Post (http://dpo.st/2xtIiwR). The agency said it did not know how much of the waste is involved …
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Zinke: Open up first Atlantic monument to commercial fishing

Zinke: Open up first Atlantic monument to commercial fishing

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke wants to open up the first marine monument in the Atlantic Ocean to commercial fishing, according to a recommendation he made in a memo to President Donald Trump. Zinke’s memo touches on his recommendations for a host of national monuments, including Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument. Former President Barack Obama designated some 5,000 square miles (12,950 square kilometers) off New England as the marine monument about a year ago. Obama’s pro…
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Zinke recommendation to cut Cascade-Siskiyou questioned

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s recommendation to President Donald Trump recommending downsizing the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument has several errors, one of the people who was behind the creation of the monument said Monday. A memo from Zinke to the president justifying his recommendation that the boundaries of the monument, which lies mostly in Oregon and crosses over into California, be “revised” says motor vehicles aren’t allowed in it. “There are hundreds of roads inside this monument…
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Interior chief urges shrinking 4 national monuments in West

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke is recommending that four large national monuments in the West be reduced in size, potentially opening up hundreds of thousands of acres of land revered for natural beauty and historical significance to mining, logging and other development. Zinke’s recommendation, revealed in a leaked memo submitted to the White House, prompted an outcry from environmental groups who promised to take the Trump administration to court to block the moves. The Interior secretary’s pl…
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