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  • Minutes before the Senate began its session, House Speaker John Boehner, R- Ohio, issued a brief but strong statement warning of the impact if the parts of the Patriot Act expire. Anyone who is satisfied with letting this critical intelligence capability go dark isn't taking the terrorist threat seriously, "said Boehner, who urged the Senate to pass the House bill...

  • ALBANY, N.Y.— As New York state lawmakers enter the final weeks of their session, prospects have dimmed for several formerly high-profile proposals such as a ban on potentially harmful chemicals in children's toys, a minimum wage increase and a bill to prevent discrimination against transgender people. Laws governing New York City's rent regulations and a key...

  • AUGUSTA, Maine— Lawmakers on the Appropriations Committee are making progress as they work toward finalizing their recommendations on the state budget. Paul LePage's proposal to eliminate funding for methadone treatment. It also nixed his effort to set aside $2 million for legal fees when Attorney General Janet Mills declines to represent the...

  • WASHINGTON— Bank of America has been fined $30 million for violating consumer protections when collecting debts from military customers. The OCC says Bank of America has started taking steps to correct the problems and "is committed to taking all necessary and appropriate steps" to do so. Bank of America Corp., based in Charlotte, North Carolina, said it will...

  • Obama pinned responsibility directly on the Senate if something were to go awry. "And heaven forbid we've got a problem where we could have prevented a terrorist attack or apprehended someone who is engaged in dangerous activity but we didn't do so simply because of inaction in the Senate." McConnell is calling the Senate back into session Sunday, just hours...

  • Paul LePage vowed Friday to veto every Democratic-sponsored bill that gets to his desk for the rest of the time he's in office unless the Legislature agrees to let residents weigh in on whether to get rid of the income tax. "The Maine people deserve to have a say on the income tax and until they lift it, that's my leverage," LePage said during a wide-ranging and...

  • May 29- Alpha Natural Resources Inc said it was notified by Wyoming's environment department that it no longer qualified for "self bonding," which allowed the coal miner to avoid insurance or provisions of about $400 million for cleanup of mines. The news comes a day after a Delaware judge asked Alpha Natural to pay for the legal defense of Donald Blankenship, the...

  • Asa Hutchinson signed into law Friday authorizes an $87 million incentive package to help lure a major defense project to Arkansas. The incentive proposal calls for issuing bonds if Lockheed Martin is the successful bidder for a military vehicle assembly contract for its Camden facility. Two other companies— Indiana- based AM General and Wisconsin- based...

  • ALBANY, N.Y.— A federal appeals court has ruled that drug manufacturer Actavis PLC's attempted switch of patented Alzheimer's medication, which halted distribution of the old drug before its patent expires this summer, violates U.S. antitrust law. He alleged antitrust and state law violations by Actavis in pushing about 500,000 patients to its new patented...

  • WASHINGTON, May 29- The U.S. Federal Trade Commission filed a lawsuit on Friday aimed at stopping the $1.9 billion merger of medical technology provider Steris Corp and British sterilization services provider Synergy Health Plc, according to the agency, which enforces antitrust law. Synergy Health and Steris, both of which provide contract sterilization...

  • PORTLAND, Maine— A White House pledge to veto proposed changes to federal fishing laws has divided fishermen over whether the rule changes should be saved or scrapped. The White House has said the administration "strongly opposes" the changes and President Barack Obama's senior advisers would recommend a veto if the bill to authorize them passes.

  • CONCORD, N.H.— Supporters of a plan to bring commuter rail from Boston to New Hampshire said the Senate's decision not to fund the next stage of the process is a bump in the road rather than an end to their efforts. Democrats say extending rail into New Hampshire is necessary for economic development and attracting young people; Republicans question the economic...

  • Sam Brownback told top Kansas lawmakers Friday that he has a new plan for raising taxes, with the GOP- dominated Legislature still sharply divided over how best to close a budget shortfall. But no consensus has emerged among GOP lawmakers, and some conservatives want to avoid tax increases. The state's budget problems arose after the Legislature slashed...

  • CHICAGO— An indictment against former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert accuses the Illinois Republican of agreeing to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep someone from the town where he taught high school silent about "prior misconduct." Legal experts say the fact that prosecutors noted Hastert's tenure in Yorkville, the suburban Chicago town where he...

  • Rand Paul is fighting to transform his recent Capitol Hill victory into momentum with presidential primary voters. "I think some of his ideas are a breath of fresh air," said Corey Brooks, an African-American pastor on the South Side of Chicago, where Paul campaigned on Wednesday. He says the Republican Party's reputation "sucks" in a book released this week that...

  • SAN FRANCISCO, May 28- Stockton, California, urged an appellate court on Thursday to back the city's exit from municipal bankruptcy after a holdout creditor appealed its plan. Stockton said in a brief on Thursday that the creditor, two funds managed by Franklin Templeton Investments, was trying to relitigate its case using the same flawed legal arguments that a...

  • Bolan, because it ends the SEC case against him while permitting him to go back to work immediately, "he said. The settlement was reached on the eve of a trial before an SEC administrative law judge over charges the SEC first leveled against Bolan and Ruggieri in September. The SEC had alleged that Ruggieri, who worked at Wells Fargo in New York, in 2010 and 2011 traded...

  • LAWYERS, LEGAL EXPERTS CONSULTED BY REUTERS SAY DISCREPANCY OVER THE PROPERTY COULD SPELL LEGAL PROBLEMS FOR MEXICO PRESIDENT.

  • SACRAMENTO, Calif.— California doctors would be required to check a statewide database before prescribing narcotics under a bill moving through the state Legislature. Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens says his SB482 would help reduce addictions to prescription drugs and prevent thousands of overdose deaths. The bill passed the Senate Thursday on a 28-11 vote and...

  • BRUSSELS, May 28- The European Commission said on Thursday it had asked Paris for more information on a new French law on taxis and chauffeured cars following a complaint from mobile phone taxi-booking service Uber. In November Uber filed a complaint with the Commission against the French law, arguing it favoured regular taxis at Uber's expense and that France...