Local News
8:18 am
Wed March 13, 2013

US Braces For Another Bad Fire Year

Credit BLM

Despite the slowest start to a wildfire season in a decade, the head of the U.S. Forest Service says his agency is preparing for another busy year, but with fewer firefighters.

Chief Tom Tidwell tells The Associated Press that late winter storms have helped, but the South and Southwestern U.S. are expected to dry out heading into May and June.

That will give way to a season much like last year, when more than 14,500 square miles were charred. That's an area bigger than the state of Maryland.

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Local News
8:16 am
Wed March 13, 2013

NM Lawmakers OK Expanded Film, TV Incentives

Certain television projects and films in New Mexico could receive increased tax incentives under a measure heading to Republican Gov. Susana Martinez.

New Mexico offers a 25 percent refund for certain film and TV production expenses.

The legislation would increase the incentive to 30 percent for a TV show producing at least six episodes in New Mexico, and for film and TV projects using a studio in the state over an extended time.

Annual incentives are capped at $50 million, but the bill would allow unused subsidies up to $10 million to carry over to the next year.

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Local News
8:15 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Senate Approves Tax Break For Horse Racing Tracks

The Senate has approved a proposal for tax breaks to New Mexico's horse racing tracks and casinos.

Supporters said Tuesday the tax credits would help tracks stay in business because they're struggling to compete with tribally operated casinos.

To qualify for the tax incentives, a track would have to increase the horse races it conducts during a season.

The tax breaks are projected to cost the state about $2.6 million in reduced revenue in the 2015 budget year when they are proposed to take effect.

The Salt
6:58 am
Wed March 13, 2013

How To Find A Food Desert Near You

Food deserts mapped from coast to coast, plus Alaska and Hawaii.
USDA

Originally published on Thu March 14, 2013 11:30 am

Want to know where you can't buy fresh, healthful food? The USDA has the map for you.

The feds' new Food Access Research Atlas lets you find out just where it's difficult to buy broccoli or bananas in counties across the U.S. Forget walking to the store in St. Louis, Minn., where most people live more than a mile from a grocery store. Ditto for Hyde, N.C., and Pushmataha, Okla.

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The Two-Way
6:45 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Retail Sales Rose In February; Spending Was 'Relatively Robust'

Retail sales rose an estimated 1.1 percent in February from January and were up 4.6 percent from February 2012, the Census Bureau says.

Kathy Bostjancic director of macroeconomic analysis at the The Conference Board research group, says in an analysis sent to reporters that the report's a sign that "consumer spending remains relatively robust." And since consumers buy about 70 percent of all goods and services, their willingness to spend is a key economic driver.

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The Two-Way
6:08 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Steubenville Rape Trial Begins

Steubenville, Ohio.
Jason Cohn Reuters /Landov

The case has already been "tried" in the social media, as The New York Times writes.

But Wednesday in Steubenville, Ohio, a real court will be the setting as two high school football players in a town that's obsessed with high school football go on trial for the alleged rape of a 16-year-old girl last summer.

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The Two-Way
5:17 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Book News: Michael Vick Cancels Book Tour Because Of Threats

Michael Vick of the Philadelphia Eagles on the sidelines during a game against the Arizona Cardinals.
Christian Petersen Getty Images

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

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The Two-Way
5:17 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Winning Musher Is Oldest Champion In Iditarod History

On their way to victory: Mitch Seavey and his team as they left White Mountain, Alaska, on Tuesday in the last leg of the Iditarod.
Bill Roth/Anchorage Daily News MCT /Landov

"Mitch Seavey scored one for the AARP-eligible crowd Tuesday night by becoming the oldest champion in Iditarod history," the Anchorage Daily News writes this morning.

According to Alaska Public Telecommunications, the 53-year-old Seavey crossed the finish line at 10:39 p.m. local time on Tuesday — 2:39 a.m. ET Wednesday. It has "checkpoint to checkpoint" coverage of the race posted here.

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The Two-Way
4:23 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Day 2 Of The Conclave; Will There Be A New Pope?

Black smoke rose from the chimney on the Sistine Chapel at midday Wednesday in Vatican City. That means the cardinals have not yet chosen a new pope.
Pool Reuters /Landov

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 10:07 am

Update at 6:41 a.m. ET. The Smoke Is Black:

Smoke just started pouring from a special chimney above the Sistine Chapel in Vatican City — and its dark color means the 115 cardinals meeting inside the chapel have not yet agreed on a successor to Pope Benedict XVI.

If all has gone as planned inside the chapel, where the cardinals are meeting in secret, they have now cast three ballots and no one name has been written on at last two-thirds of the slips of paper. It takes two-thirds — 77 votes — to become leader of the Roman Catholic Church.

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Religion
3:38 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Can't Read Smoke Signals? Try A Pope Alert Via Text

Originally published on Wed March 13, 2013 3:36 pm

Transcript

RENEE MONTAGNE, HOST:

Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. Even if the cardinals now locked away in the Sistine Chapel are losing sleep over who will become the next pope, that does not mean that you have to, thanks to Popealarm.com. The service is provided by the Fellowship of Catholic University Students. It lets eager Vatican watchers sign up for a text or an email alert that will go out as soon as the pope is chosen.

Their slogan? When the smoke goes up, you'll know what's going down. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

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