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  • March 26- New Jersey lawmakers sent a bill to Governor Chris Christie on Thursday that calls for more money from environmental settlements to fund cleanups. The legislation came after the Christie administration announced a controversial $225 million deal with Exxon Mobil Corp on March 5 over environmental contamination from two of its former New Jersey...

  • *Measure spares doctors 21 percent pay cut if passes Senate vote. WASHINGTON/ NEW YORK, March 26- The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday overwhelmingly approved a bill to permanently repair the formula for reimbursing Medicare physicians, marking a rare bipartisan achievement and sending the issue next to the Senate. The measure drafted and driven...

  • BIRMINGHAM, Ala.— Embracing proposed new rules aimed at payday lenders, President Barack Obama on Thursday said working families need protections from heavy debt burdens and warned Republicans that he would veto attempts to unravel regulations that govern the financial industry. Obama praised the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau for its proposal to...

  • The investigation led by the Federal Trade Commission and law enforcement resulted in 252 enforcement actions and $2.6 million in consumer refunds and fees. Officials say the more recent investigation in U.S. and Canada involved the Justice Department and state prosecutors. "The clear message is that across this country, and indeed internationally, law...

  • SACRAMENTO, Calif.— A plan to pump $1 billion of water spending into drought-stricken California cleared the Legislature on Thursday and was sent to Gov. The California Assembly voted unanimously, 74-0, on AB91 a day after the Senate approved bills that would expedite infrastructure spending; offer aid to communities hit hard by dry conditions; and authorize...

  • PROVIDENCE, R.I.— The legal battle over the state's 2011 public pension system overhaul moved forward in court Thursday, even as some of the plaintiffs are agreeing to settle. Lawyers for the public employees and retirees who are suing and the state's attorneys returned to court in Providence for pretrial motions. Attorney John Tarantino, who represents the...

  • Bill would put Christie's tax incentives under microscope Thursday, 26 Mar 2015 | 12:08 PM ET

    TRENTON, N.J.— Details of business tax incentives like the $5 billion handed out under Gov. Chris Christie would have to be more extensively disclosed under a bill moving in the Legislature. In particular he has touted several companies' moves to Camden after receiving tax incentives.

  • TRENTON, N.J.— The New Jersey Assembly may rebuke the Christie administration's handling of the state's medical marijuana program. Chris Christie's Health Department has placed "arbitrary and unnecessary" restrictions on the program. The measure says that 10 regulations enacted by the state Department of Health are contrary to the Legislature's intent...

  • LAUSANNE, Switzerland— CORRECTS: Officials: US considers letting Iran run centrifuges at fortified underground bunker.

  • Watchdog says senior Homeland official broke no laws Thursday, 26 Mar 2015 | 3:14 AM ET

    WASHINGTON— A senior Obama administration official violated agency ethics policies but did not break any laws when he intervened in three visa cases involving foreign investors with ties to prominent Democrats, a government watchdog told Congress Thursday. The Homeland Security Department's now deputy secretary used his post as head of the department's...

  • WASHINGTON— In uncommon bipartisan harmony, the House approved a $214 billion bill on Thursday permanently blocking physician Medicare cuts, moving Congress closer to resolving a problem that has plagued it for years. The lopsided 392-37 vote shifted pressure onto the Senate, where its prospects have brightened as Democrats have muffled their criticism...

  • Senate pushes conservative budget toward approval Thursday, 26 Mar 2015 | 3:08 AM ET

    WASHINGTON— Republicans slowly pushed a balanced-budget blueprint toward Senate approval Thursday, laying down conservative markers for a likely veto struggle with President Barack Obama over their plans to erase deficits through trillions in spending cuts and repeal of the health care law. Separately, legislation to stabilize the system for paying...

  • Judge appoints examiner in bankruptcy of Caesars division Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 7:20 PM ET

    CHICAGO— A former Watergate prosecutor who was later involved in efforts to secure the release of Americans during the Iran hostage crisis while assistant secretary of the Treasury is now investigating business deals made by Caesars Entertainment Corp. before the casino giant's debt-heavy operations division filed for bankruptcy in January.

  • GOP-controlled House oks balanced budget plan Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 7:00 PM ET

    The blueprint itself is non-binding, but sets Republicans on a path to pass legislation that repeals the health care law, remakes Medicare and overhauls the tax code, in addition to other steps to implement their plan. The GOP- controlled Senate is at work on a slightly different budget plan, with a vote expected by week's end. Republicans won control of Congress in...

  • The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimated Wednesday that the bipartisan bill preventing cuts in doctors' fees for treating Medicare patients would total $214 billion in costs over the coming decade. —$6 billion, extends expiring Medicare payments, including to some hospitals, doctors and ambulance services. —$1 billion, increases...

  • UPDATE 1-RadioShack auction headed for courtroom showdown Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 5:34 PM ET

    March 25- An auction for RadioShack Corp failed to resolve whether the electronics retailer will remain in business as bidders attacked each in court filings, setting up a showdown before a judge on Thursday. By early Wednesday, however, one of RadioShack's lenders, Salus Capital Partners, asked the U.S. Bankruptcy Court judge overseeing the case to intervene.

  • House panel votes to repeal federal estate tax Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 4:12 PM ET

    WASHINGTON— A divided House panel has passed a bill that would repeal the federal estate tax. The House Ways and Means Committee voted 22-10 Wednesday to pass the bill, sending it to the full House. The nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation says less than 1 percent of estates pay the tax.

  • TRENTON, N.J.— The board that oversees New Jersey's nearly $80 billion public pension fund is moving ahead with an investment of up to $100 million in a private equity firm whose chairman gave millions to a political group once headed by Gov. The State Investment Council decided Wednesday to invest money with Denver- based KSL Capital Partners, whose chairman,...

  • GOP-controlled House passes budget to erase deficits Wednesday, 25 Mar 2015 | 3:04 PM ET

    WASHINGTON— Normally quarrelsome House Republicans came together Wednesday night and passed a boldly conservative budget that relies on nearly $5 trillion in cuts to eliminate deficits over the next decade, calls for repealing the health care law and envisions transformations of the tax code and Medicare. Tom Price, R- Ga., chairman of the House Budget...

  • WASHINGTON— IRS workers would be prohibited from using private email to conduct official business under a bipartisan bill passed Wednesday by the House Ways and Means Committee. The issue gained attention following revelations that Democrat Hillary Rodham Clinton and Republican Jeb Bush used personal email addresses to conduct government business.