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National News

Costco to raise starting hourly wage to $16; end hazard pay

NEW YORK (AP) — Costco will increase its starting wage to $16 an hour, surpassing most of its main competitors. Costco CEO Craig Jelinek announced the increase Thursday at a Senate Budget Committee hearing, led by Sen. Bernie Sanders, to examine wages at major companies. Jelinek said the ...

Cat that vanished 15 years ago is reunited with owner

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A cat that went astray about 15 years ago has been reunited, older and maybe wiser, with its owner. Brandy, a brown tabby, was reunited Monday afternoon with Charles, who adopted her as a 2-month-old kitten in 2005. "It's amazing. I think it's unbelievable," he said ...

Mormon church gives $20M to help send vaccines globally

SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints announced Friday it has donated $20 million to help a program aimed at distributing coronavirus vaccines to poor countries around the world. The donation from the humanitarian arm of the Utah-based faith is going to UNICEF ...

NYC schools chancellor exits, citing virus’ personal toll

New York City's Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza announced Friday he will step down, citing the coronavirus pandemic's personal toll on his family. He will be replaced by Bronx Executive Superintendent Meisha Ross Porter, who will become the first Black woman to lead the nation's largest ...

California to spend $28M to help arriving asylum-seekers

SAN DIEGO (AP) — California is freeing up as much as $28 million to help immigrants arriving from Mexico and being released in the U.S. until their court dates, a sharp contrast from other border states that have emerged as foes of President Joe Biden's immigration policies. The funding, ...

4 men convicted in 1993 WTC bombing have had sentences cut

NEW YORK (AP) — Decades after going to prison, some of the men responsible for the World Trade Center bombing that killed six people 28 years ago Friday are still trying to whittle down their onetime life sentences on the remote chance that they could someday be freed. And they are having ...

Andrew Yang helps photographer facing attack on ferry

NEW YORK (AP) — A photographer who was shoved by a man who then came at him with a metal pole during a trip on the Staten Island ferry on Friday was able to get out of harm's way when New York City mayoral candidate Andrew Yang intervened. Spencer Platt, a photographer with Getty Images, ...

Judge approves $650M Facebook privacy lawsuit settlement

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A federal judge on Friday approved a $650 million settlement of a privacy lawsuit against Facebook for allegedly using photo face-tagging and other biometric data without the permission of its users. U.S. District Judge James Donato approved the deal in a class-action ...

US advisers endorse single-shot COVID-19 vaccine from J&J

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. health advisers endorsed a one-dose COVID-19 vaccine from Johnson & Johnson on Friday, putting the nation on the cusp of adding an easier-to-use option to fight the pandemic. The acting head of the Food and Drug Administration said in a statement that the agency ...

Biden surveys Texas weather damage, encourages virus shots

HOUSTON (AP) — President Joe Biden heard firsthand from Texans clobbered by this month's brutal winter weather on Friday and pledged to stick with them "for the long haul" as he made his first trip to a major disaster area since he took office. Biden was briefed by emergency officials and ...