July 3, 2014
IN ALLOWING some employers to ignore the law that requires insurance coverage for contraception, the Supreme Court on Monday endowed corporations with new rights and, at the same time, discounted the importance of health care in the lives of individual Americans. The court's narrow 5-4 decision lets certain "closely held" corporations, like Hobby Lobby, off the hook regarding a hotly contested provision of the Affordable Care Act. Companies like family businesses, in which there is no essential difference between the business and its owners, don't have to provide female workers with comprehensive insurance coverage for contraception, the court said.
July 1, 2014 |
ATLANTIC CITY - The blows came fast and furious for this struggling resort over the last week and a half. Its newest and most expensive casino, Revel, declared bankruptcy for the second time June 19 and is threatening to close if it doesn't find a buyer. Four days later, the U.S. Supreme Court shot down New Jersey's effort to get sports betting, thus denying Atlantic City casinos an option they had long wanted to bring patrons in during the slow winters. And on Thursday, Caesars Entertainment Inc., which owns four casinos here, announced it was closing the Mardi Gras-themed Showboat by summer's end. About 2,100 employees received 60-day notices the next day. The city had already shed the Atlantic Club, a smaller, underperforming Boardwalk casino in mid-January - leaving it with 11 casinos.
June 30, 2014 |
The decor of Melinda and Grif Bates' Blue Bell Colonial reflects the couple's traditional tastes. Then there is the art: twenty colorful, surrealist paintings prominently displayed throughout the two-story residence. Combining abstract depictions of faces, birds, animals, and geometric shapes with conventional furnishings - china cabinets, an upright piano, and upholstered chairs and couches, for example - has produced a strikingly attractive home. The art is the work of Grif's father, Grif Bates Jr., a retired physician whose "passion is now painting," says his son, Grif Bates III. Dr. Bates' work has been exhibited at shows in Maryland and Vermont.
June 29, 2014 |
The New Jersey Supreme Court has rebuffed efforts by two local charter schools to delay their Department of Education-ordered closings. The D.U.E. Season Charter School in Camden and the Renaissance Regional Leadership Charter School in Pemberton Township lost their bids for emergency relief because they "failed to demonstrate a likelihood of success on the merit," according to court documents dated Friday. The schools have been told they must close as of Monday, state Education Department spokesman Rich Vespucci said.
June 29, 2014 |
The planned closure of the Showboat casino on Aug. 31 is a severe blow to its 2,100 workers and another deep bruise on the Atlantic City casino industry. But at a Friday afternoon news conference outside the Tanger Walk outlets, where a Bass Pro Shop is under construction, Mayor Don Guardian kept his chin up and said, "Atlantic City is still on the move despite this economic hiccup. " The mayor called the decision by Las-Vegas-based Caesars Entertainment Corp. to close Showboat "a shame," and said it would motivate him to "work 24/7 to bring new investment to Atlantic City.
June 29, 2014 |
THE SHOWBOAT is headed for dry dock after a 27-year voyage. Caesars Entertainment of Las Vegas yesterday made official its plans to close the Atlantic City hotel-casino Aug. 31. In a statement, Gary Loveman, the company's chairman and CEO, said: "While we regret the impact that this decision will have on our Showboat associates, we believe this is a necessary step to help stabilize our business in Atlantic City and support the viability of our...
June 28, 2014 |
ATLANTIC CITY - In another blow to this struggling Shore resort, the Showboat Atlantic City hotel and casino may be seeing its last summer. Bob McDevitt, president of Unite Here Local 54, said he was notified by Showboat's parent company, Caesars Entertainment, that employees would receive layoff notices Friday. The union represents about 900 of the casino's 2,100 employees, said McDevitt, who was angered at what the loss would mean for the city and its workers. "For Caesars to close a profitable casino is a criminal act committed upon the citizens of Atlantic City," McDevitt said Thursday.
June 27, 2014 |
When the ride-sharing evangelists of Uber and Lyft square off Thursday in Pittsburgh against staff from the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission, will it be the latest act in that timeworn drama, New Technology vs. the Old Regulatory State ? Or are officials raising timely alarms about real risks? So far, I'm not convinced either way. Both services have operated for months in Pittsburgh in defiance of state regulators. Since this drama's next act could play out here, it's a good time to see how it's unfolding.
June 26, 2014 |
HARRISBURG - A House panel on Tuesday advanced a $29.1 billion budget, setting the stage for final negotiations with the Senate and Gov. Corbett on the 2014-15 spending plan. The Appropriations Committee voted, 21-14, along party lines to move the proposal to the House floor, but it is likely to undergo significant changes before reaching Corbett's desk. The bill proposes to close a $1.5 billion budget gap by transferring funds from other sources, including the sale of state liquor stores - a plan that hasn't materialized.
June 23, 2014
With staccato bursts of horrifying news of mass shootings coming almost weekly, it's hard to fathom how the U.S. Supreme Court came within a vote of upending a cornerstone of federal gun-trafficking laws. Had one more justice joined the court's conservative bloc last week, it would have become possible for a straw buyer to purchase a firearm and hand it over to just about anybody. Thanks to a 5-4 ruling, though, such transactions will remain illegal - and for good reason. Even if everyone involved in a gun sale has the right to own a weapon, federal lawmakers and authorities understand the need to track gun ownership.