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VOL. 45 | NO. 20 | Friday, May 14, 2021

Market rises to meet aging Boomers

Memory care offers services for various stages of need

Julia “Pudge” High was the life of the party. She was voted “wittiest” before her graduation from Coffee High School in Florence, Alabama, in 1959.

JOE ROGERS: MY TAKE

The good, the bad and the ugly of 2020 legislative session

Legislators have again decamped, signaling halftime of the 112th General Assembly, so it’s time to assess the damage they did before leaving. And, sure, the good.

RICHARD COURTNEY: REALTY CHECK

Record April sales obliterate April 2020’s record sales

Buyers and Realtors alike are lamenting the paucity of real estate inventory in the area. With enormous demand and many homes receiving more than 30 offers – many for hundreds of thousands of dollars more than over list price – April sales numbers are staggering.

Local Weather
Currently
Nashville, TN
68.0°F
Fog/Mist
Wind: Northwest at 3.5 mph
Humidity: 87%

EVENTS

Gallatin Young Professionals – Let’s Get Lunch. Join Young Professionals and meet at various local eateries and grow your network. This event takes place at a new spot every month on the third Wednesday. Wednesday, 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Starr Ranch, 170 N Water Avenue. Information

more events »

REAL ESTATE

Top Davidson County residential sales for April 2021

Top residential real estate sales, April 2021, for Davidson County, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

US mortgage rates fall for 4th week; 30-year dips to 2.94%

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mortgage rates declined this week, marking their fourth consecutive week below 3% and further evidence of the strength in the economy's recovery from the pandemic recession.

NEWSMAKERS

Zeglarksi joins Frost Brown Todd

Robert Zeglarksi, known for his work with clients in the technology, financial and entertainment industries, has joined Frost Brown Todd’s Nashville office as a member in the firm’s securities and corporate governance practice group.

BRIEFS

Study: COVID kept Metro grads from college

The 2021 Bridge to Completion report from the Nashville Public Education Foundation and the Tennessee College Access and Success Network finds unique challenges and inequities for Nashville public school graduates due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

BEHIND THE WHEEL

Go wild: Five top-rated off-road vehicles for 2021

It’s no surprise that trucks and SUVs continue to dominate the U.S. vehicle market. But in a further move, automakers are increasingly building more SUVs and trucks that are specifically designed for off-road driving.

PERSONAL FINANCE

You might be entitled to free health insurance now

The latest coronavirus relief package did more than dole out $1,400 checks. The law also made health insurance free for millions more people and reduced costs for others – at least for now.

BUSINESS BOOK REVIEW

Ready for a little less drama in your home, workplace?

Every morning, it’s the same argument. Two adult human beings, one at a time in front of your desk, complaining about the other over some office war that’s gone on too long. Both think they’re right. Neither will give up. You don’t know how this ridiculousness started but you know it’ll end because you’re going to end it.

MILLENNIAL MONEY

Cool vs. practical: Flashy credit card might be bad fit

The credit card you pluck out of your wallet can make as much of a statement as the purse or pants in which you carry it.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Gov. Lee OKs transgender youth treatment ban

NASHVILLE (AP) — After signing two bills into law targeting transgender people over the past week, Tennessee's Gov. Bill Lee has approved legislation that bans gender-confirming treatment for young minors despite objections that the series of bills unfairly discriminate against an already vulnerable population.

Tennessee comptroller's office hires former US attorney

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee comptroller's office has brought former U.S. Attorney Mike Dunavant on board to serve as chief investigative counsel.

STATEWIDE

With I-40 bridge closed, backup route gets inspection

MEMPHIS (AP) — An inspection of the Interstate 55 bridge connecting Tennessee and Arkansas began Tuesday, a week after the span became the states' primary Mississippi River crossing when a cracked steel beam prompted the indefinite closure of the nearby Interstate 40 bridge.

COURTS

Ex-Pilot president wants Black judge replaced for 2nd trial

KNOXVILLE (AP) — The white former president of Pilot Co., the nation's largest fuel retailer, wants a Black federal judge to recuse himself from overseeing the retrial of a fraud case against him.

'Let's Make a Slave' lesson lawsuit dismissed

NASHVILLE (AP) — A federal judge has dismissed a lawsuit filed last fall against the Metro Nashville Public Schools and a teacher over an elementary school assignment called "Let's Make a Slave."

Apple CEO Tim Cook to testify Friday as Epic trial nears end

SAN RAMON, Calif (AP) — Apple CEO Tim Cook will take the witness stand this Friday in a high-stakes courtroom battle over the lucrative commissions the iPhone maker has been raking in from its mobile app store.

NY attorney general says Trump Org probe is now criminal

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York attorney general's office said Tuesday that it is conducting a criminal investigation into former President Donald Trump's business empire, expanding what had previously been a civil probe.

HEALTH CARE

Medicare for 60-year-olds not guaranteed to be a better deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden and progressive Democrats have proposed to lower Medicare's eligibility age to 60, to help older adults get affordable coverage. But a new study finds that Medicare can be more expensive than other options, particularly for many people of modest means.

REAL ESTATE

How to ease out of mortgage forbearance, avoid foreclosure

American homeowners were given more opportunity to hit pause on their mortgage payments because of the financial ravages of the pandemic, but that relief is slowly coming to an end.

ENVIRONMENT

Green governor sets bold climate goals for rich German state

BERLIN (AP) — Germany's only state governor from the rising Green party on Wednesday announced ambitious new climate targets that includes boosting new technologies so that "Tesla will soon only see our tail lights."

TECHNOLOGY

Amazon to extend pause on police use of facial recognition

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon said Tuesday that it will extend its ban on police use of its face-recognition technology beyond the one-year pause it announced last year.

TRANSPORTATION

Southwest says flights are more full and fares are rising

DALLAS (AP) — Southwest Airlines said Wednesday that bookings are improving and leisure-travel fares for June are approaching pre-pandemic levels, further signs that the airline industry is recovering from a deep slump.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

EU takes big step toward relaxing travel for vaccinated

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union took a step toward relaxing travel rules for tourists from outside the 27-nation bloc Wednesday when EU ambassadors agreed on measures to allow in fully vaccinated visitors.

'City in transition': New York vies to turn page on pandemic

NEW YORK (AP) — More than a year after coronavirus shutdowns sent "the city that never sleeps" into a fitful slumber, New York could be wide awake again this summer.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks fall for a 3rd day; Bitcoin sinks after a wild ride

Stocks closed broadly lower on Wall Street Wednesday, extending the market's downturn to a third day.

Fed officials in April cautioned about inflation pressures

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy's faster-than-expected awakening from its pandemic-induced slumber had some Federal Reserve officials last month discussing whether it might be time to start planning for easing back on one of the central bank's levers for keeping interest rates low.

Colonial Pipeline confirms it paid $4.4M to hackers

NEW YORK (AP) — The operator of the nation's largest fuel pipeline confirmed it paid $4.4 million to a gang of hackers who broke into its computer systems.

EXPLAINER: Why has the price of Bitcoin been falling?

NEW YORK (AP) — The price of Bitcoin fell as much as 29% Wednesday after the China Banking Association warned member banks of risks associated with digital currencies. Other digital currencies suffered sharp declines as well.

Goodwill stores have a message: Please stop donating trash

Broken furniture. Flashlights with leaking batteries. Disfigured Barbie dolls.

Reversing Trump, Buttigieg reinstates local hiring program

WASHINGTON (AP) — Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Wednesday reinstated an Obama-era pilot program that aims to aid minority and disadvantaged people by ensuring local hiring for public works construction projects, reversing a decision by the Trump administration.

Target's profit surges as Americans cast restrictions aside

NEW YORK (AP) — Target's sales and profits surged in the first quarter as its customers, emerging from the pandemic, returned in big numbers for dresses, cosmetics and luggage.

Bill Gates' leadership roles stay intact despite allegations

SEATTLE (AP) — Despite damaging allegations suggesting Bill Gates pursued women who worked for him, don't expect changes to his roles at the two iconic institutions he co-founded, Microsoft and his namesake philanthropic foundation.

ECB sees elevated risks to financial stability in Europe

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — The European Central Bank says risks to the stability of companies, banks and financial markets remain "elevated" due to the uneven impact of the pandemic on the economy, warning that the eventual removal of relief measures could lead to a surge in bankruptcies.

UK inflation spikes as retailers respond to lockdown easing

LONDON (AP) — Britain's inflation rate more than doubled in April as energy prices soared and clothing retailers hiked prices as the country's coronavirus lockdown was eased, official statistics showed Wednesday.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Republicans rebel against mask requirement in House chamber

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans are rebelling against the requirement that they wear a mask on the House floor, stoking tensions with majority Democrats who are refusing to change the rules despite updated guidance from federal health officials.

Republican leaders turn against bipartisan Jan. 6 commission

WASHINGTON (AP) — Top Republicans in Congress are working to stop the formation of an independent commission into the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, aligning themselves with former President Donald Trump ahead of a Wednesday House vote on the proposal.

GOP seeks political opening amid tense Israel-Hamas fighting

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans trying to drive a wedge between Democrats and chip away at President Joe Biden's support are zeroing in on the violence in the Middle East, laying blame on his administration and aiming to make his liberal critics the face of the party heading into the midterm elections.


TUESDAY, MAY 18
PREDATORS

Staal, Niederreiter lift Hurricanes past Predators 5-2

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Carolina Hurricanes had a building full of rowdy fans again, players back from injury and a strong showing from their captain to help break open a close game.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee to mandate bathroom signs about transgender use

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee will become the first state in the United States to require businesses and government facilities open to the public to post a sign if they let transgender people use multiperson bathrooms, locker rooms or changing rooms associated with their gender identity.

REGION

TVA to spend $7.3M on energy training in schools

NASHVILLE (AP) — A federal utility is spending $7.3 million to train personnel in 160 public schools across seven states on how to reduce energy use and save money.

COURTS

Conservatives push big issues to fore at Supreme Court

WASHINGTON (AP) — Abortion. Guns. Religion. A Trump-fortified conservative majority is making its presence felt at the Supreme Court by quickly wading into high-profile social issues that have been a goal of the right for decades.

Tennessee man admits hate crime in attack on Muslim girls

NASHVILLE (AP) — A Tennessee man who harassed two teenage Muslim girls and then swung a knife and attacked their father has pleaded guilty to a federal hate crime.

Biden moving to improve legal services for poor, minorities

DETROIT (AP) — President Joe Biden plans to take executive action Tuesday to ensure minorities, low-income Americans and others have better access to quality legal representation after services dwindled during the Trump administration.

Supreme Court throws abortion fight into center of midterms

WASHINGTON (AP) — In agreeing to hear a potentially groundbreaking abortion case, the Supreme Court has energized activists on both sides of the long-running debate who are now girding to make abortion access a major issue in next year's midterm elections.

REAL ESTATE

US home construction falls a surprise 9.5% in April

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. home construction fell surprisingly sharply in April though that is follows the biggest jump in 15 years.

ENVIRONMENT

Kerry says US examining carbon border tax, sees risks

BERLIN (AP) — U.S. special envoy for climate John Kerry said Tuesday that Washington is looking into the possibility of introducing a fee on imports from countries that don't tax heavy polluters, but cautioned that such a move could carry risks "downstream."

Energy agency: End new fossil fuel supply investments

BERLIN (AP) — A report by the International Energy Agency says immediate action is needed to reshape the world's energy sector in order to meet ambitious climate goals by 2050, including ending investments in new coal mines, oil and gas wells.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Biden to spotlight electric vehicle future he sees for US

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is putting the spotlight Tuesday on the electric vehicle future he envisions for the United States, as a way to tackle climate change and create jobs.

Stellantis, Foxconn team up to make cars more connected

MILAN (AP) — Carmaker Stellantis and Taiwan's Foxconn on Tuesday announced plans to develop a jointly operated automotive supplier focusing on technology to make vehicles more connected, including artificial intelligence-based applications and 5-G communications.

California places Tesla's 'Full Self-Driving' under review

LOS ANGELES (AP) — California's Department of Motor Vehicles is reviewing whether Tesla is violating a state regulation by advertising its vehicles as being fully autonomous without meeting the legal definition of self-driving.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Biden adviser makes personal appeal to young to get shots

WASHINGTON (AP) — A top White House aide made his pitch for young people to get vaccinated personal, sharing the struggles his own son has dealt with on an ongoing basis since contracting COVID-19 last fall.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

A late drop leaves Wall Street indexes lower, led by tech

An afternoon drop led by big technology stocks left major market indexes broadly lower on Wall Street Tuesday.

Biden reverses Trump changes to bank antidiscrimination law

NEW YORK (AP) — The Biden administration said Tuesday it will repeal changes made by the Trump administration to a law aimed at stopping banks from discriminating against racial minorities and the poor.

Vote? Not yet. Invest? Yes. Fidelity launches teen accounts

NEW YORK (AP) — Looking to draw in the next generation of investors, Fidelity Investments is launching a new type of account for teenagers to save, spend and invest their money.

Retailer results so far show people are going out, spending

NEW YORK (AP) — At Walmart, sales of teeth whitener are popping as customers take their masks off. So are travel items. Macy's says that special occasion dressing like prom dresses are on the upswing as well as luggage, men's tailored clothing, and dressy sandals.

Macy's emerges from pandemic by swinging to surprise profit

Macy's emerged from an unprecedented year with a surprising swing back into the profit column and it boosted its guidance for all of 2021.

Walmart sales still boom as pandemic eases, stimulus helps

NEW YORK (AP) — Walmart blew past Wall Street projections in the first quarter with U.S. stimulus payments to Americans helping to boost sales and the company raised its expectations for the year.

Buffett's firm sells off financials, halves Chevron stake

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Investor Warren Buffett's company pared back its holdings in financial firms further during the first quarter and also halved its new investment in Chevron.

Japan's economy shrinks 5.1% as pandemic dries up spending

TOKYO (AP) — The Japanese economy contracted at an annual rate of 5.1% in January-March, slammed by a plunge in spending over the coronavirus pandemic, according to government data released Tuesday.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

GOP's McCarthy opposes Jan. 6 panel; McConnell hits 'pause'

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said Tuesday that he won't support a proposal to form an independent, bipartisan commission to study the deadly Jan. 6 insurrection at the U.S. Capitol, almost certainly eroding GOP support ahead of a vote and positioning his party as opposed to investigations of the attack.

AP FACT CHECK: Hyperbole from Biden, GOP on state of economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden and House Republicans alike are revising history when asserting that the new administration set records in U.S. job creation — either the best ever or among the worst, depending on the vantage point. The truth is in between.

Demings plans to challenge Rubio in Florida Senate race

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Val Demings is planning to challenge Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, giving Democrats a boost in a competitive 2022 race that could decide control of the Senate, according to two people with knowledge of the plans.

Amid threats to members, House to vote on new security

WASHINGTON (AP) — Colorado Rep. Jason Crow, a former Army Ranger who served three tours in Iraq and Afghanistan, says it took time for him to stop constantly scanning his environment for threats when he returned from war 15 years ago. But after the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, he says he's picked the habit up again.

Bidens paid 25.9% rate and earned $607,336, tax returns show

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden restored a long-standing presidential tradition Monday by releasing his tax returns, showing that 25.9% of the first couple's income went to the federal government in 2020. The average federal income tax rate is just over 14%.


MONDAY, MAY 17
PREDATORS

Preds, Hurricanes set to open first-round playoff series

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — The Carolina Hurricanes have gone from being mired in a nearly decade-long playoff drought to a division champion armed with postseason experience and success.

UT SPORTS

Softball teams in states with transgender bans get regionals

The NCAA named Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee as host schools for softball regionals on Sunday, bringing its postseason tournament to three states that have passed laws requiring athletes to compete in interscholastic sports according to their sex at birth.

STATEWIDE

Inspector who failed to catch interstate bridge crack fired

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — An inspector who failed to discover a crack in the Interstate 40 bridge linking Arkansas and Tennessee that prompted the span's closure has been fired, Arkansas transportation officials said Monday.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tennessee gov signs transgender 'bathroom bill' for schools

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has signed legislation that puts public schools and their districts at risk of losing civil lawsuits if they let transgender students or employees use multi-person bathrooms or locker rooms that do not reflect their gender at birth.

Tennessee Rep. Mike Carter dies of pancreatic cancer at 67

OOLTEWAH (AP) — Mike Carter, a member of the Tennessee House of Representatives, has died of pancreatic cancer at age 67.

COURTS

Supreme Court to take up major abortion rights challenge

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court agreed Monday to a showdown over abortion in a case that could dramatically alter nearly 50 years of rulings on abortion rights.

Supreme Court won't hear case involving the N-word

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court is declining to hear a case that would have let the justices decide whether a single use of the N-word in the workplace can create a hostile work environment.

High court won't make unanimous jury requirement retroactive

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court ruled Monday that prisoners who were convicted by non-unanimous juries before the high court barred the practice a year ago don't need to be retried.

TRANSPORTATION

US officials seek big fines against more airline passengers

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal regulators are continuing to pursue large penalties against a few airline passengers accused of disrupting flights.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Nissan begins producing new Pathfinder at Smyrna plant

SMYRNA, Tenn. (AP) — Nissan has started producing its new Pathfinder at its assembly plant in Smyrna.

MEDIA

Streaming landscape shifts with $43B AT&T Discovery deal

NEW YORK (AP) — AT&T said Monday it will combine its massive WarnerMedia media assets, which includes HBO and CNN, with Discovery Inc. to create a new media heavyweight in a $43 billion deal.

Russia won't block Twitter, but partial slowdown to continue

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian authorities on Monday backed away from threats to block Twitter, saying that the social media platform deleted most of the banned content identified by Moscow and expressed "readiness and interest in building a constructive dialogue."

TECHNOLOGY

Ransomware attack hits 4 Asian countries of AXA subsidiary

PARIS (AP) — A targeted ransomware attack hit four countries among the Asian operations of Axa Partners, the international subsidiary of Axa insurance group, with some data in Thailand accessed, Axa Partners said.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Biden to boost world vaccine sharing commitment to 80M doses

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will announce Monday that the U.S. will share an additional 20 million doses of COVID-19 vaccines with the world in the coming six weeks, the White House said.

Joy for UK pubs and hugs tempered by rise in virus variant

LONDON (AP) — Pubs and restaurants across much of the U.K. opened for indoor service for the first time since early January on Monday, even as the prime minister urged people to be cautious amid the spread of a more contagious COVID-19 variant.

Fauci says pandemic exposed 'undeniable effects of racism'

ATLANTA (AP) — The immunologist who leads the COVID-19 response in the United States said Sunday that "the undeniable effects of racism" have led to unacceptable health disparities that especially hurt African Americans, Hispanics and Native Americans during the pandemic.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

US stocks fall further from records amid inflation fears

U.S. stocks closed modestly lower Monday, tacking more losses onto last week's stumble, as worries about inflation continue to dog Wall Street.

Biden plan would pick winners, losers in move to green jobs

WASHINGTON (AP) — In Georgia, school bus-maker Blue Bird has visions of going from selling a few hundred electric buses annually to 15,000. In Michigan, Ford plans to produce an all-electric version of its F-150 pickup truck.

World Economic Forum cancels big event in 2021 amid pandemic

GENEVA (AP) — World Economic Forum organizers say they have decided to cancel their annual gathering — usually held in Davos, Switzerland each year — this year amid concerns related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Study: Hope for US boost pushes global luxury goods recovery

MILAN (AP) — Luxury brands are already cashing in on promises of a 21st-century version of the "Roaring '20s" in the United States, where hefty stimulus packages and an advanced vaccine campaign are accelerating post-pandemic recovery in high-end sales, according to a new study by Bain & Co. consultancy released on Monday.

EU, US agree to temporarily suspend tariffs in steel dispute

BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union and the United States have decided to temporarily suspend measures at the heart of a steel tariff dispute that is seen as one of the major trade issues dividing the two sides.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

As GOP restricts voting, Democrats move to expand access

Last year, for the first time in more than a quarter-century, Democrats in Virginia took control of the statehouse and the governor's mansion. Since then, one priority has become clear: expanding voting rights.

Trump critic Cheney cautions Jan. 6 riot could happen again

WASHINGTON (AP) — Rep. Liz Cheney, newly ousted from House Republican leadership for challenging former President Donald Trump, criticized GOP colleagues Sunday for downplaying the Jan. 6 riot and condoning Trump's lies that the 2020 election was stolen, saying they were "complicit" in undermining democracy.

About 88% of children qualify for monthly payments in July

The Treasury Department said Monday that 39 million families are set to receive monthly child payments beginning on July 15.


FRIDAY, MAY 14
NASHVILLE AREA

NCAA eyes host sites in states with anti-transgender laws

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The NCAA announced 20 potential host sites for the early rounds of its postseason baseball tournament Friday, including three states that have passed laws requiring athletes to compete in interscholastic sports according to their sex at birth.

Fauci urges Vanderbilt graduates to serve their country

NASHVILLE (AP) — Dr. Anthony Fauci urged Vanderbilt University graduates on Friday to get involved in public service and to help heal the country's destructive political divisiveness.

Nashville lifts mask requirement after CDC issues guidance

NASHVILLE (AP) — Nashville lifted its indoor public mask requirement Friday after federal counterparts relaxed guidance on the COVID-19 pandemic to advise that fully vaccinated people can stop wearing masks outdoors in crowds and in most indoor settings.

PREDATORS

NHL postseason: Predators among hottest teams as playoffs arrive

NASHVILLE (AP) — Goalie Juuse Saros is the biggest reason the Nashville Predators went from a potential NHL draft lottery team to their seventh straight playoff appearance.

STATEWIDE

Mississippi River traffic reopened under damaged bridge

MEMPHIS (AP) — River traffic has reopened on the Mississippi River near Memphis, Tennessee, three days after it was closed when a crack was discovered in the Interstate 40 bridge that connects Tennessee and Arkansas, the U.S. Coast Guard said Friday.

Sportsbook in 'good standing' after court blocked suspension

NASHVILLE (AP) — The operator of a sports betting app in Tennessee is now in "good standing" after it faced suspension over suspected debit card fraud by some users.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Honda returns to quarterly profit despite pandemic damage

TOKYO (AP) — Honda swung into the black in January-March, recording a 213 billion yen ($2 billion) profit despite the lingering impact of the pandemic.

Officials: Tesla in fatal California crash was on Autopilot

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A Tesla involved in a fatal crash on a Southern California freeway last week was operating on Autopilot at the time, authorities said.

TECHNOLOGY

Facebook loses court fight over halting EU-US data transfers

LONDON (AP) — Facebook lost a legal battle Friday with Ireland's data privacy watchdog over a European Union privacy decision that could result in the social network being forced to stop transferring data to the U.S.

COURTS

Gaetz associate agrees to cooperate in federal investigation

WASHINGTON (AP) — A Florida politician who emerged as a central figure in the federal investigation into Rep. Matt Gaetz has agreed to cooperate with federal investigators and admits paying an underage girl to have sex with him and other men, according to court documents filed Friday.

Tennessee prosecutor defends marriage to office subordinate

CHATTANOOGA (AP) — A Tennessee prosecutor is defending his marriage to a subordinate in his office.

Apple holds edge in app store trial despite nagging issues

SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — Apple seems to be prevailing in an antitrust trial examining whether its mobile app store illegally skims profits from smaller companies.

MEDIA

Passing on your password? Streaming services are past it

NEW YORK (AP) — Many of us were taught to share as kids. Now streaming services ranging from Netflix to Amazon to Disney+ want us to stop.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Fully vaccinated can drop the masks, skip social distancing

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a major step toward returning to pre-pandemic life, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has eased mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people, allowing them to stop wearing masks outdoors in crowds and in most indoor settings.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks close higher with help from tech, still down for week

Stocks closed higher for the second day in a row but still ended with a weekly loss after three sizable drops earlier in the week.

US industrial output rose a modest 0.7% amid shortages

WASHINGTON (AP) — U.S. industrial production increased for a second straight month in April as more factories came online after being shutdown by winter ice storms.

Retail sales were flat in April as stimulus spending waned

NEW YORK (AP) — Retail sales in the U.S. were flat in April after soaring in March, when many Americans received $1,400 stimulus checks that boosted spending.

Airbnb reports 1Q loss of nearly $1.2 billion, revenue rises

Airbnb reported Thursday that its first-quarter loss more than tripled, to $1.17 billion, as travel remained depressed by the pandemic and the company was weighed down by costs from past borrowing.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

US warns extremists may strike as virus restrictions ease

WASHINGTON (AP) — A national terrorism alert issued Friday warns that violent extremists may take advantage of the easing of pandemic restrictions to conduct attacks.

House panel has agreement on bipartisan Jan. 6 commission

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top Democratic and Republican members of the House Homeland Security Committee have reached an agreement on legislation to form a bipartisan commission to investigate the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol. The measure had stalled amid partisan differences.

Biden, GOP senators upbeat, plan more infrastructure talks

WASHINGTON (AP) — After meeting at the White House, President Joe Biden and a group of Republican senators agreed to talk again early next week as negotiations intensified over a potentially bipartisan infrastructure package that could become one piece of the administration's ambitious $4 trillion public investment plan.

What insurrection? Growing number in GOP downplay Jan. 6

WASHINGTON (AP) — What insurrection?

Conservatives seize on gas crunch to blame Biden, stir base

A graphic calling the East Coast fuel supply crunch "Biden's Gas Crisis." A tweet speculating that gas stations running dry was an "INSIDE JOB." A meme depicting the president and vice president cheering about the "Green New Deal" in front of a snaking line at a fuel station.

House GOP elects Trump defender Elise Stefanik to No. 3 post

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans vaulted Rep. Elise Stefanik into the ranks of House leadership Friday, electing an ardent Donald Trump defender in hopes of calming their searing civil war over the deposed Rep. Liz Cheney's unremitting combat with the former president.


THURSDAY, MAY 13
TENNESSEE TITANS

Titans agree to terms with Farley, 5 of 8 draft picks

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Titans have agreed to terms with first-round selection Caleb Farley and four of his fellow draft picks just before their three-day rookie minicamp.

STATE GOVERNMENT

Tim Tebow, Tennessee gov unveil anti-human trafficking push

NASHVILLE (AP) — Former NFL player Tim Tebow joined Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee at the state Capitol on Thursday to announce a multimillion-dollar partnership to fight human trafficking.

MUSIC INDUSTRY

Maren Morris, Miranda Lambert lead CMT Music Awards noms

NASHVILLE (AP) — Former tourmates Miranda Lambert and Maren Morris are the leading nominees for the 2021 CMT Music Awards, celebrating the best in country music videos.

STATEWIDE

Official: Repairs to interstate bridge could take months

MEMPHIS (AP) — Repairs to the Interstate 40 bridge linking Arkansas and Tennessee could take months after a crack was found in the span, forcing thousands of trucks and cars to detour and shutting down shipping on a section of the Mississippi River, a transportation official said Wednesday.

Roadtec to expand in Chattanooga, creating 128 new jobs

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee has announced that Roadtec, Inc. will expand its operations in Chattanooga.

MIDSTATE

Franklin couple charged with stealing $1.7M from widow, 85

FRANKLIN (AP) — A Tennessee exterminator who posed as the relative of an 85-year-old widow with dementia has been charged with defrauding the woman out of nearly $1.7 million, according to a criminal complaint unsealed Wednesday.

COURTS

Justices consider hearing a case on 'most offensive word'

WASHINGTON (AP) — Robert Collier says that during the seven years he worked as an operating room aide at Parkland Memorial Hospital in Dallas, white nurses called him and other Black employees "boy." Management ignored two large swastikas painted on a storage room wall. And for six months, he regularly rode an elevator with the N-word carved into a wall.

Suit challenges restaurant aid priority to women, minorities

NASHVILLE (AP) — A conservative legal outfit filed a lawsuit Wednesday against President Joe Biden's administration for its prioritization of restaurants and bars owned by women and certain minorities in its COVID-19 relief package, arguing white men are being "pushed to the back of the line" for aid for their eateries.

With bankruptcy tossed, what's next for the NRA?

NEW YORK (AP) — Now that a judge has rejected the National Rifle Association's bankruptcy bid, blocking its plan to reincorporate in Texas, the gun rights group is back to fighting a lawsuit that threatens to put it out of business.

ENVIRONMENT

EPA revokes Trump-era policy that loosened clean-air rules

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Environmental Protection Agency is revoking a Trump-era rule that overhauled how the agency evaluates air pollutants, a move the Biden administration says will make it easier to enact limits on dangerous and climate-changing emissions.

TRANSPORTATION

FAA approves Boeing fix for jets grounded by electrical flaw

WASHINGTON (AP) — Federal regulators have approved a Boeing procedure to fix about 100 jets that have been idled for the past month because of improper electrical grounding of some components, and some of the planes could be flying again in the next few days.

AUTO INDUSTRY

Tesla to stop accepting Bitcoin for car payments

Electric car maker Tesla will stop accepting Bitcoin as a payment, CEO Elon Musk tweeted on Wednesday, citing environmental concerns.

Crash, arrest draw more scrutiny of Tesla Autopilot system

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Federal safety regulators are sending a team to California to investigate a fatal freeway crash involving a Tesla, just after authorities near Oakland arrested a man in another Tesla rolling down a freeway with no one behind the steering wheel.

VIRUS OUTBREAK

Inside one network cashing in on vaccine disinformation

The couple in the website videos could be hawking any number of products.

Mayor: Memphis will stop enforcing mask mandate Saturday

MEMPHIS (AP) — Nearly a year after requiring people to wear face masks in many public settings to slow the spread of the coronavirus, Memphis will stop enforcing the mandate on Saturday, Mayor Jim Strickland said.

Govt eases up guidance on indoor mask-wearing

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a striking move to send the country back toward pre-pandemic life, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Thursday eased indoor mask-wearing guidance for fully vaccinated people, allowing them to safely stop wearing masks inside in most places.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

Stocks climb after three days of losses, led by Big Tech

Wall Street put the brakes on a three-day losing streak with a broad stock market rally Thursday powered by Big Tech companies and banks.

Amazon seeks to hire 75,000; offers $100 to vaccinated hires

NEW YORK (AP) — Amazon is seeking to hire 75,000 people in a tight job market and is offering bonuses to attract workers, including $100 for new hires who are already vaccinated for COVID-19.

US jobless claims sink to 473K as more GOP governors bar aid

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits fell last week to 473,000, a new pandemic low and the latest evidence that fewer employers are cutting jobs as consumers ramp up spending and more businesses reopen.

Big 0.6% April wholesale price jump catches many off guard

WASHINGTON (AP) — Wholesale prices, driven by escalating costs for services and food, jumped 0.6% in April, surprising economists and providing more evidence that inflation pressures are starting to mount with the country emerging from a recession brought on by the pandemic.

McDonald's raising US workers' pay in company-owned stores

McDonald's is raising pay at 650 company-owned stores in the U.S. as part of its push to hire thousands of new workers in a tight labor market.

Tech audit of Colonial Pipeline found 'glaring' problems

BOSTON (AP) — An outside audit three years ago of the major East Coast pipeline company hit by a cyberattack found "atrocious" information management practices and "a patchwork of poorly connected and secured systems," its author told The Associated Press.

Facebook-backed digital currency project Diem shifts to US

A once-ambitious Facebook-backed digital currency project — formerly known as Libra, now called Diem — is shifting operations from Switzerland to the U.S. and said it plans to launch a cryptocurrency tied to the U.S. dollar later this year.

China says Xiaomi removal from U.S. blacklist "beneficial"

HONG KONG (AP) — China's commerce ministry on Thursday welcomed the removal of Xiaomi Corp. from a U.S. government blacklist, a day after the U.S. reversed a ban on U.S. investments in the smartphone maker that was imposed under former President Donald Trump.

NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL POLITICS

Gaetz associate expected to plead guilty in federal case

WASHINGTON (AP) — A key figure in the federal investigation of Republican Rep. Matt Gaetz is expected to plead guilty to criminal charges next week.

Biden signs order to beef up federal cyber defenses

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — President Joe Biden signed an executive order Wednesday meant to strengthen U.S. cybersecurity defenses in response to a series of headline-grabbing hacking incidents that highlight how vulnerable the country's public and private sectors are to high-tech spies and criminals operating from half a world away.

Biden team moves swiftly to tackle pipeline political peril

The Biden administration swung aggressively into action after a primary gasoline pipeline fell prey to a cyberattack — understanding that the situation posed a possible series of political and economic risks.

Biden courts Hill leaders, but GOP won't budge on big deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — Despite sharing pleasantries at the White House, Republican congressional leaders signaled no willingness Wednesday to embrace President Joe Biden's ideas for a massive infrastructure investment, insisting instead on a much smaller package and rejecting the idea of raising taxes on corporations and the wealthy to pay for it.

GOP purged Cheney for 'unity,' but Trump bent on retribution

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican leaders insisted that purging Trump critic Rep. Liz Cheney from their ranks was necessary to unify the party ahead of next year's midterm elections.

US hits China and others for repressing religious freedom

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration on Wednesday took aim at China and a number of other countries for repressing religious freedom as it forges ahead with its aim of restoring human rights as a primary focus of American foreign policy.

Deal reached for ex-White House counsel McGahn's testimony

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former White House counsel Don McGahn will answer questions in private from the House Judiciary Committee in an apparent resolution of a longstanding dispute over his testimony, according to a court document filed Wednesday evening.

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