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$9.5 million in penalties in platform blast, Gulf violations

Kevin McGill, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 8:12pm

An oil industry services company will pay $9.5 million in penalties for Gulf of Mexico safety violations and for pollution from a 2012 offshore platform fire that killed three workers.

Montana abortion bill would make doctors try to save fetus

Bobby Caina Calvan, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 7:10pm

Montana lawmakers pushed forward with a measure Thursday that would effectively ban all abortions after 24 weeks of pregnancy, regardless of the medical risks to a woman, by requiring doctors to deliver the fetus and try to save it.

Conservatives urged not to 'squander' Trump presidency

Julie Bykowicz and Andrew Taylor, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:44pm

President Donald Trump's vice president and top aides delivered one overriding message Thursday to the thousands of conservative activists gathered for their annual conference outside of Washington: Don't blow it.

Lawmakers hear from passenger at train crash hearing

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:44pm

New Jersey lawmakers investigating an NJ Transit train crash that killed one person and injured more than 100 others have heard testimony from a passenger who says he doesn't know when he'll ever be able to ride a train again.

Google-bred company accuses Uber of self-driving car theft

Michael Liedtke, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:29pm

A self-driving car company founded by Google is colliding with ride-haling service Uber in a court battle revolving around allegations of betrayal, high-tech espionage and greed.

Homeland Security chief: No use of military for deportations

Josh Lederman, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:26pm

Seeking to tamp down growing unease in Latin America, U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly pledged Thursday that the United States won't enlist its military to enforce immigration laws and that there will be "no mass deportations."

AP FACT CHECK: Trump claims, and gets, undue credit

Calvin Woodward and Alicia A. Caldwell, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:13pm

President Donald Trump is giving himself too much credit for sending criminal foreigners out of the country and saving money on fighter planes. He's getting too much credit from one of the few women with a top White House job for elevating women in the administration.

Sessions: US to continue use of privately run prisons

Eric Tucker, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 6:05pm

Attorney General Jeff Sessions signaled Thursday his strong support for the federal government's continued use of private prisons, reversing an Obama administration directive to phase out their use. Stock prices of major private prison companies rose at the news.

Dakota Access oil pipeline camp cleared of protesters

James MacPherson and Blake Nicholson, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 5:57pm

Authorities on Thursday cleared a protest camp where opponents of the Dakota Access oil pipeline had gathered for the better part of a year, searching tents and huts and arresting dozens of holdouts who had defied a government order to leave.

NAFTA in Trump era is focus at US-Mexico trade forum

Astrid Galvan., Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 5:47pm

Mexican and U.S. business leaders attending a large trade conference in the border town of El Paso said Thursday that their sectors will survive despite threats by President Donald Trump to dismantle or renegotiate the North American Free Trade Act — which he has labeled the worst deal in U.S. history.

Hospitalized asylum seeker returned to detention center

Claudia Lauer, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 5:05pm

A Salvadoran woman seeking asylum in the United States was returned to a Texas detention center after spending almost two weeks in a hospital, U.S. immigration officials said Thursday.

The Latest: 46 protesters arrested while police clear camp

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 4:46pm

The Latest on the closing of a protest encampment near the Dakota Access pipeline construction site in North Dakota (all times local):

Solar farms banned after complaints in North Carolina county

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 4:15pm

County commissioners in eastern North Carolina have imposed an indefinite ban on the construction of solar farms after neighbors complained that they seem unsightly and said they're afraid of flying glass in the event of severe weather.

US factory CEOs to Trump: Jobs exist; skills don't

Christopher S. Rugaber, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:48pm

President Donald Trump brought two dozen manufacturing CEOs to the White House on Thursday and declared their collective commitment to restoring factory jobs lost to foreign competition.

Latest wilderness plans draw fire from New Mexico ranchers

Susan Montoya Bryan, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:26pm

New Mexico's two senators have introduced legislation they say has been years in the making to set aside tens of thousands of acres as wilderness on opposite ends of the state in areas already designated as national monuments.

Former House speaker predicts 'Obamacare' won't be repealed

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:17pm

Former House Speaker John Boehner predicted on Thursday that a full repeal and replacement of "Obamacare" is "not going to happen."

Fugitive search at JFK Airport sparks new travel ban scare

The Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:17pm

Federal border officials say they were looking for a fugitive, not doing a random immigration check, when they met a plane at New York City's Kennedy Airport and asked passengers for their IDs.

St. Louis ordinance seeks to pre-empt Missouri abortion laws

Katie Kull, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:10pm

A new ordinance in St. Louis prohibits discrimination based on "reproductive health decisions," an effort by the heavily Democratic city to pre-empt a slew of anti-abortion measures advancing through Missouri's Republican-controlled Legislature.

Plight of company towns: finding a new identity

Sara Burnett, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:04pm

Peoria Mayor Jim Ardis planned to open this year's State of the City speech by thanking Caterpillar Inc. for its longtime commitment to the central Illinois town, declaring "We wouldn't be Peoria without Caterpillar."

Former tech CEO gets prison in US after self-exile in Africa

Tom Hays, Associated Press  |  Posted   Feb 23rd - 3:04pm

A wealthy former CEO who dodged securities fraud charges by spending a decade in Africa with a $50 million nest egg was sentenced Thursday to 30 months in prison by a judge in New York City who blasted him as "foolish" for hatching his scheme and fleeing justice for so long.