• Firefighters too big, but girl just right to rescue kitten

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    LANCASTER, Pa. (AP) — Firefighters were too big to rescue a kitten from a storm drain in south-central Pennsylvania, but a 6-year-old girl's size proved to be just right. Lancaster Township firefighters responded when the girl, Janeysha Cruz, and her friends saw the trapped kitten Tuesday afternoon. The girl's mother called 911 and then gave firefighters permission to lower the kindergartner nearly 3 feet down into the drain, which was too small for the firefighters to enter. The girl was able to coax the kitten to come to her and handed it to the firefighters. The Fire Department reported the incident on its Facebook page, along with a picture of Janeysha, Deputy Fire Chief Glenn Usdin and the kitten.

  • Scientists: Plastic waste in Great Lakes creates many woes

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — About 80 percent of human-made debris found in the Great Lakes is plastic, ranging from tiny micro-beads found in cosmetics and clothing fibers to bottles and plastic wrap, scientists said Thursday during a meeting of Great Lakes scientists being held at the University of Vermont. While the big pieces can be ugly, the smaller pieces can attract dangerous chemicals, such as pesticides or herbicides, which can then be eaten by plankton, mussels, fish or birds, the scientists said. "The concern is ... these plastics act as a means to move ... toxic compounds into the food web and into us," said Sherri Mason, a chemist who led a Thursday session on micro-plastics at the 58th Annual Conference on Great Lak

  • Nebraska ends ban on driver's licenses for immigrant youths

    Updated: 6 hr ago

    LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — Nebraska ended the nation's last ban on driving privileges for young people brought into the United States illegally as children, after the Legislature voted Thursday to override a veto from the state's new Republican governor. Senators in the one-house Legislature voted 34-10 to override Gov. Pete Ricketts, who has backed the strict policy of his GOP predecessor that left Nebraska as the only state to deny the licenses to the youths granted temporary protection from deportation. Senators said Nebraska youth who have been granted deferred-action status are active contributors to the state's economy and should not be penalized for their parents' actions. "Forty-nine other states recognize this hypocrisy

  • Obama: TX, OK storms a reminder to prepare for disasters

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    MIAMI (AP) — President Barack Obama said Thursday that deadly flooding in Texas and Oklahoma is a reminder that the U.S. needs to toughen its response to the effects of natural disasters. He said climate change is affecting both the pace and intensity of storms. Making his first visit as president to the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Obama said that, while the nation is more prepared than ever for today's storms, "the best scientists in the world are telling us that extreme weather events, like hurricanes, are likely to become more powerful." "When you combine stronger storms with rising seas, that's a recipe for more devastating floods," he said. Obama said storm forecasting has improved along with the means to

  • FIFA probe shines light on middle-man sports marketing firms

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — The U.S. Justice Department's targeting of FIFA, soccer's global governing body, has put a spotlight on the powerful role that marketing firms play in the global sports arena. Such firms act like talent agencies: They work with athletes, teams and athletic associations to sign sponsorships and advertising deals. In some cases, they buy and resell media and licensing rights. Big names in the United States include IMG, which was acquired last year by talent agency William Morris Endeavor, and Learfield Sports. The big four U.S. pro team sports organizations — the National Basketball Association, the National Football League, Major League Baseball and the National Hockey League — sell their broadcasti

  • Memo: Eliminating DNR positions could take more jobs with it

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker's plan to eliminate about 30 scientist and educator positions in the Department of Natural Resources could result in the agency losing dozens of additional positions his proposal doesn't account for, according to a report from state fiscal analysts. The governor's budget calls for eliminating 18.4 scientist positions within the DNR's Science Services Bureau and 11 natural resource educators — part of a larger proposal to slash 80 positions within the agency. The DNR would be left with 18.6 scientist positions in the science bureau and seven educator positions. According to the nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau, four scientist positions and two educator positions are currently vac

  • Hartford mayor calls strategy meeting in wake of shootings

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Hartford's mayor is calling a strategy meeting with a group of community and religious leaders and parents to discuss what more can be done to stem of a recent wave of violence in the city. There have been five homicides in the last two weeks and several other incidents, including a drive-by shooting that left a minister seriously wounded outside his church Sunday. Mayor Pedro Segarra says he does not believe the city will be able to arrest its way out of the problem. He says he hopes the private meeting on Friday can spawn some new ideas. The mayor says there is often a spike in violent crime during the summer and the city is putting money into summer jobs and recreation programs to help combat

  • Review shows Bevin holding lead in Kentucky GOP primary

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — Matt Bevin held on to his 83-vote lead after a state review of vote totals Thursday in Kentucky's Republican primary for governor, but his rival did not concede and suggested he was not done contesting the result. Secretary of State Alison Lundergan Grimes announced shortly before 3 p.m. that vote totals for Bevin and Comer did not change following the review of electronic voting machines and absentee ballots in all 120 counties, known as a recanvass. But she did not declare Bevin the winner, and Agriculture Commissioner James Comer said through a spokesman that he would interrupt his Florida vacation Friday to announce "the next steps he will take in this race." The election results won't be certified

  • Federal prosecutors indict ex-US Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert on bank-related charges

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    CHICAGO (AP) — Federal prosecutors indict ex-US Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert on bank-related charges.

  • Pope joining gallery of murals on Philadelphia buildings

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Philadelphia boasts a large and colorful cast of characters painted on buildings across the city — and now Pope Francis will join the crowd. Officials announced Thursday that hundreds of residents and visitors will help create a mural honoring families and the pontiff, who is scheduled to visit the city for the World Meeting of Families in September. The multigenerational portrait, titled "The Sacred Now: Faith and Family in the 21st Century," will show the pope with his arm around a youngster and surrounded by a diverse group of parents and children. Flowers and grapevines will border the triptych, which will span more than 4,000 square feet over three sections of the future St. Malachy school.

  • Uber, Lyft push back against proposed NYC regulations

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    NEW YORK (AP) — Representatives of Uber and Lyft warned Thursday that a New York City effort to regulate app-based ride-hailing services will stall innovation and threaten competition. The regulations "will be crushing to our thousands of drivers," Michael Allegretti, New York head of public policy for San Francisco-based Uber, said at a public hearing of New York's Taxi and Limousine Commission. But commission Chairwoman Meera Joshi said the proposed rules changes are minor adjustments to existing regulations that have been mischaracterized by opponents.

  • New Jersey Gov. Christie's shifting position on Common Core

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie's position on the Common Core education standards has shifted as he has positioned himself for an expected presidential run. Here's a look at how the Republican's statements on the topic have evolved in recent months. ___ AUGUST 2013: Less than two years ago, Christie was touting his state's commitment to the standards, which he'd signed onto as part of an application for Race to the Top funds. "We're doing Common Core in New Jersey and we're going to continue. And this is one of those areas where I've agreed more with the president than not," Christie told the audience at a school summit in Las Vegas on August 2013, according to video footage of the event.

  • Woman, 51, pleads guilty in politics-fueled drunken killing

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    DETROIT (AP) — A Detroit-area woman accused of killing a friend with a slow cooker during a political dispute while very drunk pleaded guilty to second-degree murder on Thursday in a deal with prosecutors. Tewana Sullivan was awaiting trial next week on a first-degree murder charge. She pleaded guilty but mentally ill with an understanding that she will get 23 to 50 years in prison. First-degree murder carries a mandatory sentence of life in prison without parole. Wayne County Circuit Judge Michael Hathaway set her sentencing for June 15. The mental illness plea doesn't affect the prison term itself but provides for prison officials to evaluate her mental health and treat her as needed.

  • Sedalia police release photos of crate where woman was held

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    SEDALIA, Mo. (AP) — Police have released photos of the crate where they say a Missouri man held a woman captive before she escaped and was later shot to death. James Barton Horn, of Sedalia, was accused of holding Sandra Sutton captive off-and-on for months before she escaped last month. Sutton and her 17-year-old son, Zachary Wade Sutton, were found shot to death last week at a relative's home in Clinton, where Sutton had gone to live after escaping Horn. Horn was being sought on kidnapping charges and later for the Suttons' deaths. Police found and killed Horn Saturday in a rural area in western Missouri.

  • Marine veteran from Edmond reflects on her World War II service

    By Matt Patterson, Staff Writer | Updated: 7 hr ago

    Grace Davis, 92, of Edmond, served in the U.S. Marine Corps from 1943 to 1946.

  • Automakers, gov't reveal models in expanded Takata recall

    Updated: 7 hr ago

    DETROIT (AP) — Car owners are beginning to find out if their cars or trucks are included in a big expansion of a recall of air bags made by Takata Corp. Automakers, as well as Canadian and U.S. safety regulators, are posting documents that spell out the vehicles being recalled to replace air bag inflators that can explode with too much force, spewing shrapnel into the passenger compartment. Six people have been killed and more than 100 injured due to the problem. Last week the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said that Takata of Japan agreed to double the number of inflators it recalled to 33.8 million. But the makes and models were not available. The increase made it the largest auto recall in U.S.

  • Ex-Miss America's divorce case scandalized Tulsa in '34

    BY DEBBIE JACKSON and HILARY PITTMAN, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, May 28, 2015

    Two weeks of racy divorce court testimony filled with revelry, adultery and a tipsy toddler, shattered in 1934 the demure image most Tulsans had of our very own Miss America, who had married oilman Thomas Gilcrease. The crowning of Norma Des Cygne Smallwood was hailed as an anti-flapper victory by the Tulsa World. Smallwood didn’t bob her long, chestnut hair but wore it rolled into buns on either side of her face, somewhat like Princess Leia in “Star Wars.” “Chosen for beauty, intelligence and personality, Miss Tulsa … is a type entirely apart from the bobbed-haired, boyish flapper popularly acclaimed as the exponent of American girlhood,” read the Associated Press story bannered on the front page of the Tulsa World on Sept. 11, 1926. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Rules aim to protect imperiled bird's habitat in 10 states

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — Interior Secretary Sally Jewell revealed plans Thursday to preserve habitat in 10 Western states for an imperiled ground-dwelling bird, the federal government's biggest land-planning effort to date for conservation of a single species. The proposal would affect energy development. The regulations would require oil and gas wells to be clustered in groups of a half-dozen or more to avoid scattering them across habitat of the greater sage grouse. Drilling near breeding areas would be prohibited during mating season, and power lines would be moved away from prime habitat to avoid serving as perches for raptors that eat sage grouse. Some will say the plans don't go far enough to protect the bird, Jewell sai

  • Keystone Lake nearing flood stage

    BY RHETT MORGAN, Tulsa World | Published: Thu, May 28, 2015

    MANNFORD — The town administrator from Mannford is seeking to ease fears of flooding in a city that sits alongside ever-rising Keystone Lake. City hall took an estimated 300 calls Wednesday from people worried about water overtaking the community, Town Administator Mike Nunneley said. Sand bags four to five feet high have been placed around the doors of Mannford High School gymnasium, whose floor sits at 754 feet, he said. At 2 p.m. Thursday, the lake measured at 751.37 which is roughly three feet below flood stage. Keystone has a surcharge (above flood pool) of 757 feet. Read the rest of this story at TulsaWorld.com.

  • Rebates drive grass removal frenzy during California drought

    Updated: 8 hr ago

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — There's a torrent of Californians taking advantage of rebates for ripping out water-guzzling lawns during the drought, and that's providing a big boost to landscapers. In Southern California in particular, things are poised to get even better for an industry that was battered by the recession and slow to recover. This week, the board of the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California voted to replenish its turf removal and other water conservation programs with $350 million to meet booming demand. In communities across the state, homeowners are swapping out traditional lawns for drought-tolerant plants and shrubs, changing the look of many yards and the business outlook for landscaping and nurserie