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NEWS
June 29, 2014 | By Joseph A. Slobodzian, Inquirer Staff Writer
Demolition contractor Griffin Campbell will remain in prison pending trial in last June's disastrous Center City building collapse, a Philadelphia judge ruled Friday. Common Pleas Court Judge Benjamin Lerner said the Pennsylvania constitution did not give him discretion to grant the bail motion filed by Campbell's attorney, William D. Hobson. The constitution permits bail for all crimes except where the possible penalty is death or life in prison. Although Campbell, 50, is charged with six counts of third-degree murder, state sentencing law includes a provision for mandatory life in prison without parole for someone convicted of two or more counts of third-degree murder.
BUSINESS
June 29, 2014 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
Penn National Gaming Inc. has dropped its bid to build a $480 million Hollywood casino in South Philadelphia, the Wyomissing, Pa., company said Friday. "A contributing factor in our decision to withdraw our proposal was the City of Philadelphia's vocal support for a Center City casino location, despite the fact that two-thirds of the profits from our proposed casino were dedicated to the city's education and pension fund liabilities," said Timothy J. Wilmott, Penn National's president and chief executive.
BUSINESS
June 25, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Drugmaker Shire P.L.C., which is trying to fend off a $46.5 billion takeover offer from AbbVie, told investment analysts Monday that it hopes to double its revenue by 2020. Shire is officially headquartered in Ireland, but has operations in Wayne and Exton. The Irish base is a big part of why Shire is being pursued by AbbVie. Companies, especially in health care, have been scrambling of late to buy other companies so they can reregister in Ireland, which has lower corporate tax rates than the United States.
BUSINESS
June 22, 2014 | By David Sell, Inquirer Staff Writer
Drugmaker Shire P.L.C., which is based in Ireland but has operations in Wayne and Exton, said Friday that its board has rejected a $46.5 billion takeover offer from AbbVie Inc. Like some other pharmaceutical companies, AbbVie wants to buy a company that would allow it to shift its official residence to Ireland and avoid the higher corporate tax rate that exists in the United States. In most cases, relatively few employees move to Ireland. AbbVie was spun off last year from Abbott Laboratories and became a separate drugmaker, while the new Abbott focused on the medical products side of the business.
NEWS
June 20, 2014 | By Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writer
U.S. District Judge John E. Jones III on Wednesday denied a county row officer's request to intervene and appeal his ruling that overturned Pennsylvania's same-sex marriage ban. Schuylkill County Register of Wills Theresa Santai-Gaffney had asked Jones to halt same-sex marriages in the state until the U.S. Supreme Court weighs in on the issue. She argued that marriage is for states to decide and said Jones' May 20 ruling - which declared Pennsylvania's marriage ban unconstitutional - left her duties as Schuylkill County's issuer of marriage licenses unclear.
NEWS
June 8, 2014 | By Troy Graham, Inquirer Staff Writer
  Philadelphia joined the race Friday to host the 2016 Democratic National Convention, trumpeting the city's record of handling huge events and its history as home to the nation's first convention - the one to draft the Declaration of Independence. "We've been holding great conventions ever since," Mayor Nutter said at a City Hall news conference. The mayor also cited the city's location and infrastructure, and added that Philadelphia was chosen to host the 2015 World Meeting of Families, a Catholic gathering expected to draw 2 million people.
NEWS
May 30, 2014 | By Claudia Vargas, Inquirer Staff Writer
A year after enthusiastically announcing that Philadelphia was throwing in its hat to seek the 2024 Summer Olympic Games, Mayor Nutter has pulled that hat back. Citing concerns about cost and the logistics of hosting other large events here in the near future, Nutter said the timing was just not right. "The time, the effort, the fund-raising, the prospect of creating new venues . . . it is a tremendous, costly endeavor," Nutter said Wednesday. "We decided that, at this time, we would not put in or submit a bid. " The mayor notified the U.S. Olympic Committee earlier this month of the city's decision not to pursue a bid to host the 2024 summer games.
NEWS
May 29, 2014 | BY CHRIS BRENNAN, Daily News Staff Writer brennac@phillynews.com, 215-854-5973
MORE THAN once yesterday, Lewis Katz and H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest seemed more than a little surprised to still own the two newspapers and website they bought two years ago. An acrimonious ownership feud ended when Katz and Lenfest bid $88 million yesterday to buy out three other investors in the company that owns the Daily News , the Inquirer and Philly.com. "I would have bet anything I was cashing a big check today," Katz joked to employees after the auction. He then turned serious, adding, "I apologize to each and every one of you for being part of creating some of the chaos.
NEWS
May 29, 2014 | By Jeremy Roebuck, David Sell, and Thomas Fitzgerald, Inquirer Staff Writers
Inquirer co-owners Lewis Katz and H.F. "Gerry" Lenfest won a private auction for the newspaper and its parent company Tuesday, ending a fractious battle for control that prompted the business' sixth ownership change in eight years. Their $88 million bid bested a group led by co-owner George E. Norcross III and was $27 million more than the partners spent two years ago to form Interstate General Media Holdings L.L.C. Held at a Philadelphia law firm and closed to the media, the auction capped months of litigation between IGM's owners and turmoil for the company, which employs about 1,800 people at The Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News, three websites, and a printing plant in Conshohocken.
NEWS
May 22, 2014 | By Jessica Parks and Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writers
The hotly contested race for the Democratic nomination in the 13th Congressional District turned out to not be much of a race at all: State Rep. Brendan Boyle was declared the winner by 9:45 p.m. Tuesday. By the time all but a few polls had reported hours later, the 37-year-old from Philadelphia was celebrating a decisive victory over his closest contender, former U.S. Rep. Marjorie Margolies. "We moved forward, we kept the faith, we worked like hell, and tonight we have won," Boyle, a state legislator since 2009, told more than 100 cheering supporters at a Fraternal Order of Police lodge in Northeast Philadelphia.
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