Local News

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(The Center Square) – A restaurant owner in Lancaster County said this week he used grant funding from the state’s COVID-19 relief fund to raise wages for his workers. Read more

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WASHINGTON, D.C. - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reversing course on some masking guidelines. Read more

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430 people are hospitalized with COVID-19. Of that number, 97 patients are in the intensive care unit with COVID-19. Read more

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HARRISBURG — Montgomery County ranks among the Top 10 counties that recorded the highest number of animal abuse cases since a state anti-cruelty law known as Libre’s Law strengthened the protection of animals and went into effect in 2017, according to statistics compiled by the Administrative Office of Pennsylvania Courts. Read more

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ArtsQuest announced the evening will be headlined by Hector Tricoche.  Read more

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Dorman Products Inc., the Bucks County-based supplier of aftermarket automotive parts, produced another quarter of outstanding results. Read more

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Ticks are most active during warmer months, which is why we typically see more instances of tick bites and cases of tick-borne diseases this time of year.  Read more

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(The Center Square) – Pennsylvania’s per-capita rate of long-range bonded debt is less than the national average, according to a newly released analysis. But figures elsewhere continue to portray the weight of the state’s debt burden. Read more

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Arson hasn't been ruled out, and people nearby believe suspicious activity may have been involved. Read more

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A judge has denied a Lehigh County man's request to use information from another homicide case in his own murder defense. Read more

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Several hospitals in our area were ranked among the top in Pennsylvania. Read more

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In early June the Berks County Detective’s Office say they began investigating alleged reports of sexual abuse of a 9-year-old girl.  Read more

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Police are expecting heavy delays between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. on Wednesday on major and secondary roads around Lehigh County. Read more

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(The Center Square) – Pennsylvania Department of Labor & Industry Secretary Jennifer Berrier announced the department will extend its partnership with virtual identity verification vendor ID.me to provide identity verification for all new Unemployment Compensation claims. Read more

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'The plan is to continue as it is, and not mess it up. If I can keep it up as they did, it will be great.' Read more

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This is the last hot day of the forecast, as highs pop back up to near 90 degrees, but with tolerable humidity levels by mid-summer standards. Read more

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The attorney for the Berks man accused in the South Philadelphia shooting says the man who died had his client in a chokehold, squeezing his neck. Read more

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Jeffrey Knopf of  Boyertown Community Ambulance says he has been noticing a shrinking number of EMS workers across Pennsylvania. Read more

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'Matters between individuals in the neighborhood have gotten worse as more people are getting tickets.' Read more

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The money will help offset losses experienced by the Santander Arena and the Performing Arts Center as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more

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Borough Manager Scott McElree noted the pool's style, slide, splash pad and baby pool "have been narrowed down." Read more

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The White House revealed Monday that Biden will visit Mack Trucks in Lower Macungie Township. Read more

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Two Spring Township residents addressed the board about flooding from water runoff from the Alcon manufacturing plant. Read more

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UPPER MOUNT BETHEL TWP., Pa. - Fire heavily damaged a home in Northampton County Monday afternoon. Read more

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57 of the nation's top medical groups say it's time to mandate COVID vaccinations for health care workers. Read more

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A cemetery deed dating to 1802 started the mystery. Read more

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Declaring the Northern Goshawk as an endangered species could protect them from human activity. Read more

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The township says the arrow was never a functioning arrow for regular traffic to have the green light to turn. Read more

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US and World News

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In their search for a new approach to arms control, Moscow and Washington are likely to soon encounter an old bugaboo: Russia’s demand that the U.S. stop resisting limits on its missile defenses. The Russians view U.S. missile defenses as a threat to their security, while the Americans see them as central to defending the nation and deterring war. The dispute has shot down past efforts to broaden the scope of arms control negotiations. Now it is among several disagreements that are likely to determine whether the world’s two biggest nuclear powers can avoid a new arms race. On Wednesday, U.S. and Russian officials open a “strategic stability” dialogue in Geneva. Read more

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The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The state of California. New York City. Hospitals and nursing homes. Colleges and universities. Employers are beginning to put COVID-19 vaccine requirements into place and it’s getting attention. The Justice Department said individuals must be informed of their “option to accept or refuse administration” of an emergency use vaccine like the coronavirus shot. But it said that doesn't prohibit employers from mandating vaccinations as a condition of employment. Employment lawyers say workers can seek medical or religious exemptions. Employers may also go for “soft mandates” that give hesitant workers options like masking up. Read more

An unreleased Wu-Tang Clan album forfeited by Martin Shkreli after his fraud conviction has been sold. Federal authorities announced the sale Tuesday, saying proceeds would fully satisfy the remainder of what Shkreli owes on a $7.4 million forfeiture order he faced after his 2018 sentencing. Court documents show he'd already paid off about $5 million. The entrepreneur known as “Pharma Bro” once boasted of paying $2 million in 2015 at auction for “Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.” The Wu-Tang Clan spent six years creating the 31-track double album. Shkreli's lawyer declined comment. The 38-year-old Shkreli is scheduled for release from prison in October 2022. Read more

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Aaron Rodgers has made it to Green Bay on the eve of the Packers’ first training-camp workout. Rodgers was seen arriving at Lambeau Field on Tuesday morning, the day after NFL Network and ESPN had reported the reigning MVP was closing in on a deal that would keep him with the Packers this season. The Packers open training camp Wednesday. Rodgers hadn't participated in organized team activities this spring and skipped the Packers’ mandatory minicamp. His return makes the Packers legitimate Super Bowl contenders. Read more

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A former Air Force intelligence analyst has been sentenced to 45 months in prison for leaking top-secret information about the U.S. government’s drone strike program to a journalist. Daniel Hale told a federal judge he felt compelled to disclose the information out of guilt over his own participation in a drone program that he believed was indiscriminately killing civilians in Afghanistan far from the battlefield. But U.S. District Judge Liam O’Grady told Hale he had other avenues for airing his concerns besides leaking to a journalist.  Read more

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Stocks closed lower on Wall Street, pulling major indexes back slightly from the records they set a day earlier. Weakness in big technology companies was the biggest factor for the decline Tuesday. The S&P 500 fell 0.5% while the tech-heavy Nasdaq fell 1.2%. Markets have been choppy as investors try to get a clearer picture of how well the economy is recovering from the pandemic and when the Federal Reserve will eventually ease up on its support for the economy. The central bank will release its latest report on Wednesday. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note fell to 1.24%. Read more

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NEW ORLEANS -- Louisiana’s health department is reporting 6,797 new COVID-19 cases and 20 new deaths. Read more

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An internal audit says the Defense Department has dragged its feet on protecting service members from toxic “forever chemicals.” A recent inspector general's report says the Pentagon delayed issuing an alert for years after learning about potential danger to drinking water from so-called PFAS chemicals used in firefighting foam. The report says the department plans to test military firefighters' blood for the chemicals but has no strategy for comprehensive tracking of the results. It also urges the department to deal with PFAS contamination from materials other than firefighting foam on military bases. Read more

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The leader of Tunisia’s Islamist party and speaker of parliament said Tuesday that his party is working to form a “national front.” Ennahdha party head Rachid Ghannouchi said that the front would counter President Kais Saied’s decision to suspend the legislature, fire top government officials and take control of the fragile democracy amid the country’s multi-layered crisis. Ghannouchi told The Associated Press on Tuesday that the goal is to pressure the president “to demand the return to a democratic system.” He cited plans for peaceful protests and sit-ins. There has been widespread concern in Tunisia and from allies over the president's moves which Ghannouchi says amount to a coup. Read more

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American star Simone Biles withdrew from the women’s gymnastics team final competition following one rotation on Tuesday night, opening the door for the team of Russian athletes to win gold for the first time in nearly three decades. Jordan Chiles, Sunisa Lee and Grace McCallum guided the U.S. to silver while Biles cheered from the sideline in a white sweatsuit, at peace with a decision that revealed a shift not only in Biles but perhaps the sport she’s redefined. Biles is the latest in a series of high-profile athletes, including tennis star Naomi Osaka, who have used their platforms to discuss their mental heath struggles. A subject that was once taboo has become far more accepted and embraced.  Read more

The first day of the House investigation into the Jan. 6 uprising at the U.S. Capitol exposed daytime television viewers to profane language and racial slurs. The emotional testimony by four police officers was accompanied by video clips of mayhem and profanity, and one officer described how a racial slur was repeatedly directed at him. The hearing was carried widely, although some CBS and NBC stations opted out. It was also aired in full on Fox News Channel, the network of choice for many Republicans — some of whom have sought to minimize the events of that day. Fox's Bret Baier says it was an ‘eye-opener’ for anyone who thought it was non-violent. Read more

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The lead investigator in the death of University of Iowa student Mollie Tibbetts says he's confident the right man was convicted of murder and rejects claims that her abduction could be tied to two other men. Division of Criminal Investigation agent Trent Vileta said Tuesday that had they known, detectives searching for Tibbetts in 2018 would have looked into another woman’s claim that she’d been lured by a man from Tibbetts’ hometown and held in a nearby home for sex trafficking. But the woman’s complaint didn't lead to charges and Vileta says it should be disregarded given the evidence tying Tibbetts' death to local farmhand Cristhian Bahena Rivera. He testified at a hearing on whether to grant a new trial to Bahena Rivera. Read more

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U.S. officials who are trying to adopt out wild horses captured on public land say they are tightening protections to guard against the illegal resale of animals for slaughter. Advocates say the government needs to do more, including ending incentive payments for adoptions. The Bureau of Land Management said in announcing the changes that the agency is committed to the health and safety of adopted wild horses and burros. It says it intends to begin making additional inspections after adoptions, improve screening of potential adopters and other measures. The bureau says an estimated 86,000 wild horses and burros living in 10 Western states is three times as many as public lands can sustain. Advocates dispute that. Read more

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A man accused of killing eight people, most of them women of Asian descent, at massage businesses in Georgia has pleaded guilty to four of the murders. Robert Aaron Long was handed four sentences of life without parole on Tuesday in Cherokee County. He still faces the death penalty in the four other killings, which are being prosecuted in Atlanta. His shooting spree in March raised fears among Asian Americans. And at Tuesday's sentencing, a prosecutor said Cherokee County investigators saw no evidence of racial bias. That’s at odds with the hate crime and domestic terrorism prosecution Long faces in Atlanta. Read more

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UPS had another strong quarter with shipments to homes continuing at a blistering pace, though revenue at home was a little weaker than some had expected. Its stock fell in afternoon trading Tuesday. Domestic revenue still grew 10.2% to $14.40 billion in the second quarter, with per-piece revenue rising 13.4%. However, Wall Street had projected domestic revenue of $14.76 billion. Revenue from international operations spiked 30% to $4.82 billion, which was better than the $4.57 billion analysts had expected. For the three months ended June 30, UPS earned $2.68 billion, or $3.05 per share. Stripping out one-time costs, earnings were $3.06 per share, easily beating the $2.75 that Wall Street was looking for. Read more

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is reversing course on some masking guidelines. The agency announced new recommendations Tuesday that even vaccinated people should return to wearing masks indoors in parts of the U.S. where the coronavirus is surging. Scientists cited new information about the ability of the delta variant to spread among vaccinated people. The CDC also recommended indoor masks for all teachers, staff, students and visitors to schools, regardless of vaccination status. The new guidance follows recent decisions in Los Angeles and St. Louis to revert to indoor mask mandates amid a spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations that have been especially bad in the South. Read more

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Japan won its second straight Olympic softball gold medal, beating the United States 2-0 in an emotional repeat of their 2008 victory in Beijing that again left the Americans in tears. Yukiko Ueno took a one-hitter into the sixth inning five days after her 39th birthday, and Japan snuffed out an American rally attempt with an acrobatic double play in the sixth inning. Mana Atsumi, the No. 9 batter, had a run-scoring infield hit in the fourth inning and Yamato Fujita lined an RBI single off Abbott in the fifth. Softball will not return to the Olympics until at least 2028. Read more

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Robinhood is disrupting another stock market norm _ and taking a big risk _ by giving ordinary investors access to a huge slice of its initial public offering. The popular online brokerage is taking the unusual step of allowing users to buy up to a third of its IPO shares before they begin trading on the Nasdaq Thursday under the ticker symbol “HOOD.” But expanding early access to an IPO beyond Wall Street insiders isn’t without risk. The move could backfire if many individual investors, often referred to as retail traders, are tempted to flip their shares immediately for a quick profit, rather than hold them. Read more

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An explosion at an industrial park for chemical companies in Germany has killed at least two people, with 31 others injured and several still missing hours later. Fire officials who tested the air said there did not appear to be a danger to nearby residents after authorities initially urged people to shelter inside. The explosion at the waste management facility of the Chempark site in Leverkusen, near Cologne, sent a large black cloud into the air on Tuesday morning. It took firefighters almost four hours to extinguish the fire that took hold after the explosion. Read more

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The Vegas Golden Knights have traded reigning Vezina Trophy-winning goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury to the Chicago Blackhawks. The return of a minor leaguer Mikael Hakkarainen indicates it was a salary dump. Fleury counts $7 million against the salary cap next season. Chicago was not on the 36-year-old's 10-team no-trade list. Agent Allan Walsh says Fleury will be taking time to talk to his family and seriously evaluate his hockey future. Among other goalie moves around the NHL, Vancouver's Braden Holtby and San Jose's Martin Jones will become free agents after going on buyout waivers. Read more

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Robert Saleh and the New York Jets were focused on football again after spending the last several days mourning the loss of their friend, colleague and mentor. The death of assistant coach Greg Knapp last Thursday stunned the organization and the entire NFL community. The Jets are preparing to hit the field for their first practice of training camp Wednesday. Knapp died of his injuries from an accident on July 17 when he was struck by a car while riding his bicycle near his home in California. He was 58. Meanwhile, rookie quarterback Zach Wilson was the only Jets player to not report Tuesday as he continues contract negotiations.  Read more

Secretary of State Antony Blinken is condemning an incident in which a swastika was carved into an elevator wall at the State Department. Blinken says in a message sent to all department employees that the vandalism is a painful reminder that antisemitism remains an issue in the U.S. and around the world and must be combatted relentlessly. He said the swastika has been removed and the incident is being investigated. The swastika was discovered on Monday. Blinken sent his message to employees on Tuesday. Read more

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The International Monetary Fund has boosted its forecast for gross domestic product in Latin America and the Caribbean, fueled by stronger outlooks for its two largest economies. The IMF expects the region will grow 5.8% this year, up 1.2% from a forecast released in April. The IMF says in its report that the brighter regional perspective reflects favorable spillover to Mexico from the improved outlook for the United States and booming terms of trade for Brazil. The updated perspective for Brazil is in line with the median outlook from economists surveyed by the nation’s central bank, who have increased their projections for 14 straight weeks.  Read more

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Alex Ovechkin has re-signed with the Washington Capitals for $47.5 million over five years. Ovechkin will count $9.5 million against the salary cap through the 2025-26 season. The Russian superstar captain and 2018 playoff MVP during Washington's Stanley Cup run held off signing a new contract until after the Seattle expansion draft. There was never any real chance Ovechkin would play for another NHL team. Ovechkin turns 36 in September. He's fifth on the career goals list with 730 and sits 164 back of Wayne Gretzky for the record. Read more

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In a major step against climate change, President Joe Biden is proposing a return to aggressive Obama-era vehicle mileage standards over five years. He's then aiming for even tougher anti-pollution rules after that to forcefully reduce greenhouse gas emissions and nudge 40% of U.S. drivers into electric vehicles by decade’s end. That's according to proposed rules from the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Transportation that are expected to be released as early as next week. Industry and government officials who have been briefed on the plan tell The Associated Press the requirements would start for model year 2023. Read more

Prince's “Welcome 2 America,” the first complete, previously unreleased record to come out since Prince died in 2016, offers a stunning glimpse at the depth, and quality, of what he left behind. In a review, The Associated Press’ Scott Bauer says “Welcome 2 America” manages to be as relevant, or maybe even more, relevant today than when it was recorded in 2010. From the first song and title track, which starts off with Prince bemoaning the power of the iPhone and Google, the tone of “Welcome 2 America” is made clear. It's almost as if Prince knew the record would mean more now than when he recorded it. Read more

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North and South Korea exchanged messages in communication channels that have been dormant for more than a year and agreed to improve ties. That still leaves any resumption of stalled negotiations to rid the North of its nuclear weapons a long way off. Seoul officials said that liaison officials from the Koreas had several phone conversations Tuesday including one on a military hotline and agreed to resume speaking regularly. The rivals use the channels to lay out their positions on issues and even propose broader dialogue. The links are also critical to preventing any accidental clashes along their disputed sea boundary. Read more

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Towns around Italy’s Lake Como have been hit by mudslides and floods in yet another example of extreme weather phenomena that an agricultural lobby says have intensified in recent years. Italian firefighters carried out more than 60 rescues Tuesday after storms wreaked havoc around the picturesque lake ringed by mountains in northern Italy. Coldiretti estimates 14 billion euros ($16.5 billion) of damage over the last decade to agriculture production, buildings and infrastructure because of climate change-provoked events like flooding and landslides.  Read more

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Human Rights Watch has accused the Israeli military of carrying out attacks that “apparently amount to war crimes” during an 11-day war against the Hamas militant group in May. The international human rights group issued its conclusions on Tuesday after investigating three Israeli airstrikes that it said killed 62 Palestinian civilians. It said “there were no evident military targets in the vicinity” of the attacks. The report also accused Palestinian militants of apparent war crimes by launching over 4,000 unguided rockets and mortars at Israeli population centers. The report, however, focused on Israeli actions during the fighting.  Read more

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The United States says it will keep existing COVID-19 restrictions on international travel in place for now due to concerns about the surging infection rate because of the delta variant. It was the latest sign that the White House is having to recalibrate its thinking around the coronavirus pandemic as the more infectious variant surges across the U.S. and a substantial chunk of the population resists vaccination. It was also a reversal from the sentiment President Joe Biden voiced earlier this month when he said his administration was “in the process” of considering how soon the U.S. could lift the ban on European travelers bound for the U.S.  Read more