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The Ledger - EST. 1978 - Nashville Edition
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VOL. 45 | NO. 30 | Friday, July 23, 2021

We have a winner!

State Fair’s move to Wilson County looks like a best-in-class merger

The first Tennessee State Fair was held at the Walnut Race Course in North Nashville in 1855. It was the same year poet Walt Whitman first published “Leaves of Grass,” Isaac Singer patented the sewing machine motor and Congress approved $30,000 to test camels for military use (clearly, that didn’t work out well).


Tennessee might have listened to Frist on COVID-19

I’ve long been of the belief that the best thing Bill Frist did for Tennessee and the whole of the United States was to retire from the Senate in 2007. I have now reassessed that stance.


Fannie, Freddie take a load off by dropping 0.5% fee

In 2012, interest rates for 30-year mortgages dipped to less than 4% for the first time in history, a full 14 points less than the 18% rate of 1981. When this phenomenon hit nine years ago, homeowners sprinted to their favorite mortgage lenders to refinance their homes at the new rates.

Local Weather
Nashville, TN
Wind: from the Southwest at 10.4 gusting to 17.3 mph
Humidity: 33%


Mayor Randall Hutto. Meet with Mayor Randall Hutto. Lebanon Wilson County Chamber of Commerce, 149 Public Square. Wednesday, 1-2 p.m. Information: Wilson County Courthouse, 615 444-1383.

more events »


Top Davidson County commercial sales for June 2021

Top commercial real estate sales, June 2021, for Davidson County, as compiled by Chandler Reports.

US average mortgage rates dip for 4th week; 30-year at 2.78%

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mortgage rates fell for the fourth straight week, undercut by worries that the surging delta coronavirus variant and the worsening pandemic in hotspots around the world could derail what has been a strong economic recovery.


Grant selected for TN Supreme Court board

Charles K. Grant, a shareholder in the Nashville office of Baker Donelson, has been appointed by the Supreme Court of Tennessee to serve on its Board of Professional Responsibility.


MacNeill Pride Group buys outdoor gear maker

Nashville-based MacNeill Pride Group, a designer and manufacturer of outdoor products and sporting goods, has acquired Klymit, a leading outdoor gear designer.


Five likely reasons your check engine light just lit up

Americans are holding onto their vehicles longer than ever, with the average age of a car in 2020 rising to a record 12.1 years, data from IHS Markit reveals. But if you own a car for long enough and something goes wrong mechanically, you’re likely to see an amber check engine light somewhere in the gauge cluster.


Americans deserve better credit reporting system

In some ways, the U.S. credit reporting system has improved. Credit freezes, which lock our credit information to deter identity theft, are now free and fast. We have free weekly access to our credit reports, courtesy of the credit bureaus Equifax, Experian and TransUnion, until April 20. Free credit scores provided by banks, credit card issuers and other companies allow us to easily monitor for signs of fraud and other problems.


Credit card shopping? Don’t overlook credit unions

When you’re frequently bombarded with ads for credit cards at big banks, it’s easy to overlook credit cards at a local credit union. These not-for-profit organizations typically require membership based on location or affiliation with an employer, a family member or an organization.


Some companies don’t understand shifting landscape

There’s a shortage of workers. It’s hard to say exactly how we got here since there are so many factors involved. But, you can see the results of this shortage everywhere you look.


File this one away under ‘surprisingly good read’

You need it.... now. Actually, the document you’re looking for was needed yesterday. You had it then, it was here five minutes ago, and it’s gone now – probably buried beneath 50 other pieces of paper you’ll also need soon and won’t be able to find.


Rangers sign No. 2 overall pick Leiter with $7.9M bonus

Second overall pick Jack Leiter signed Wednesday with the Texas Rangers, getting a $7,922,000 signing bonus that is the largest for a drafted pitcher in 10 years.


Tannehill, Titans get on board with NFL COVID-19 protocols

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Titans quarterback Ryan Tannehill had no intention of getting vaccinated against COVID-19. The NFL's extensive protocols for unvaccinated players ultimately changed his mind.

Cannabis company files suit against Julio Jones, others

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee Titans wide receiver Julio Jones is facing allegations of illegally harvesting and selling millions of dollars of cannabis in California, according to court records.


Senate GOP leaders urge public to get COVID-19 vaccine

NASHVILLE (AP) — A group of Tennessee Senate Republicans are urging the public to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, a move that comes as case numbers are beginning to once again climb throughout the state.


Tennessee State, other schools sending mementos into space

NASHVILLE (AP) — Mementos from Tennessee State University and 13 other historically Black colleges and universities will be launched into orbit aboard Boeing's CST-100 Starliner this week.


Interstate bridge over Mississippi River to begin reopening

MEMPHIS (AP) — The Interstate 40 bridge linking Arkansas and Tennessee that was closed after a crack was found in the span will begin reopening to traffic next week, transportation officials said Wednesday.


Gun maker offers $33M to settle suit by Sandy Hook families

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The maker of the rifle used in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting has offered some of the victims' families nearly $33 million to settle their lawsuit over how the company marketed the firearm to the public.

Prosecutors won't seek retrial in 3 Pilot Flying J cases

NASHVILLE (AP) — Federal prosecutors indicated Tuesday that they won't pursue a new trial against the former president of Pilot Flying J and two of his former employees in connection to a rebate scheme aimed at cheating trucking companies out of millions of dollars.


Ford posts 2Q profit; factory output better than expected

DETROIT (AP) — Sky-high sales prices for its pickup trucks and SUVs helped Ford Motor Co. turn a surprise second-quarter profit despite a global shortage of computer chips that cut production.

Nissan returns to profit, forecasts profit for year

TOKYO (AP) — Nissan reported a 114.5 billion yen ($1 billion) profit for the April-June quarter as its sales and profitability improved, especially in the U.S. market.


US moves to better protect infrastructure from cyber threats

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration is eyeing ways to harden cybersecurity defenses for critical infrastructure, announcing Wednesday the development of performance goals and a voluntary public-private partnership to protect core sectors.


Pfizer hikes 2021 outlook after vaccine boosts sales, profit

Strong sales of its COVID-19 vaccine and other medicines helped Pfizer nearly double its second-quarter revenue and boost its profit an impressive 59%, beating Wall Street expectations and leading the drug giant to sharply hike its 2021 sales and profit forecasts.


Facebook profits top $10B as revenue soars

Facebook doubled its profit in the second quarter thanks to a massive increase in advertising revenue, especially the average price of ads it delivers to its nearly 3 billion users.

NBC's Tokyo Olympics viewership gets off to rough start

NEW YORK (AP) — If there's going to be a surge in viewership interest in the Tokyo Olympics, NBC Universal is still waiting.


Should vaccinated people mask up with COVID-19 cases rising?

Should vaccinated people mask up with COVID-19 cases rising?

New CDC guidelines set off rush to reimpose mask mandates

States and businesses scrambled Wednesday to change course after the federal government issued new guidance calling for the return of mask wearing in virus hot spots amid a dramatic spike in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations nationwide.

Google delays workers' return to office, mandates vaccines

SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — Google is postponing a return to the office for most workers until mid-October and rolling out a policy that will eventually require everyone to be vaccinated once its sprawling campuses are fully reopened in an attempt to fight the spreading Delta variant.


Stocks end mixed after Fed notes progress on the economy

Stock indexes capped a wobbly day of trading on Wall Street with mixed results Wednesday after the Federal Reserve said it was seeing improvement in the economy, but not enough to start dialing down its support measures.

Fed's Powell downplays delta variant's threat to the economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — The spread of the COVID-19 delta variant is raising infections, leading some companies and governments to require vaccinations and raising concerns about the U.S. economic recovery.

After rocket ride of growth, Robinhood heads to the market

NEW YORK (AP) — After a rocket rise where it introduced millions of people to investing and reshaped the brokerage industry, all while racking up a long list of controversies in less than eight years, Robinhood is about to take the leap itself into the stock market.

EXPLAINER: Risks underlie tumbling Chinese company shares

BEIJING (AP) — Foreign shareholders in China's tech companies are learning what its entrepreneurs have long known: The ruling Communist Party's decisions about what is good for the economy can hurt your business.

Delivery apps expand reach to meet customer demands

Spurred by skyrocketing consumer demand during the pandemic, restaurant delivery companies like DoorDash and Uber Eats are rapidly expanding their services to grocers, convenience stores, pharmacies, pet stores and even department stores.

Boeing, for first time since 2019, has a profitable quarter

Boeing reported its first quarterly profit since 2019 and revenue topped expectations, as the giant aircraft maker tries to dig out from the most difficult stretch in its history.

Crispy chicken and open dining rooms; McDonald's sales soar

McDonald's posted better-than-expected sales in the second quarter as dining rooms reopened and new products like its crispy chicken sandwich brought in customers.

High profile: Cannabis chemical delta-8 gains fans, scrutiny

NEW YORK (AP) — A chemical cousin of pot's main intoxicating ingredient has rocketed to popularity over the last year, and the cannabis industry and state governments are scrambling to reckon with it amid debate over whether it's legal.

Starbucks hits sales record as customers return to stores

Starbucks saw record sales in the third quarter as the impact of the pandemic receded and customers flocked to its stores.

3 tech giants report combined profits of more than $50B

Three tech companies — Apple, Microsoft and Google owner Alphabet — reported combined profits of more than $50 billion in the April-June quarter, underscoring their unparalleled influence and success at reshaping the way we live.


Infrastructure deal: Senate ready to move ahead on $1T bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Republicans reached a deal with Democrats on Wednesday over major outstanding issues in a $1 trillion infrastructure package, ready to begin consideration of a key part of President Joe Biden's agenda. An evening test vote was possible.

US, Russia hold 'professional' arms talks despite tensions

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senior diplomats from the United States and Russia held what the State Department described as "substantive and professional" talks on arms control and other strategic issues on Wednesday despite myriad other differences that have sent relations into a tailspin.

Infrastructure talks leave Biden's entire agenda at risk

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden's latest leap into the Senate's up-and-down efforts to clinch a bipartisan $1 trillion infrastructure deal comes with even more at stake than his coveted plans for boosting road, rail and other public works projects.

Can Biden's plans manufacture more US factory jobs?

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will be trying to connect with blue-collar workers Wednesday when he travels to a truck factory in Pennsylvania to advocate for government investments and clean energy as ways to strengthen U.S. manufacturing.

Capitol police testimony blunts GOP's law-and-order message

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Republican Party's self-portrayal as champions of law and order is colliding with searing testimony from police officers themselves. Officers on Tuesday described in vivid, personal terms the terror of defending the U.S. Capitol from violent insurrectionists inspired by then-president Donald Trump on Jan. 6.


Report: Tennessee murders increased in 2020, many other crimes down

NASHVILLE (AP) — The number of murders in Tennessee jumped 37% last year compared to 2019, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation's 2020 Crime in Tennessee report reveals.

4 Tennessee horses test positive for Potomac horse fever

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee officials say four horses have tested positive for a bacterial illness known as Potomac horse fever.


Tennessee corrections commissioner to retire this fall

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee's corrections leader plans to retire this fall after almost four decades with the department.


Designer who won't make same-sex wedding websites loses case

DENVER (AP) — A U.S. appeals court has ruled against a web designer who didn't want to create wedding websites for same-sex couples and sued to challenge Colorado's anti-discrimination law, another twist in a series of court rulings nationwide about whether businesses denying services to LGBTQ people amounts to bias or freedom of speech.

Tennessee man sentenced in scheme that duped cancer patients

NASHVILLE (AP) — A Tennessee man who ran a Ponzi scheme disguised as a holistic wellness business was sentenced to eight years in prison on Friday.


US home prices surge 17% in May, most in 17 years

WASHINGTON (AP) — Prices for U.S. homes rose faster in May than they have in 17 years as surging demand for housing outstripped the supply.


Biden mileage rule to exceed Obama climate goal

WASHINGTON (AP) — In a major step against climate change, President Joe Biden is proposing a return to aggressive Obama-era vehicle mileage standards over five years. He's then aiming for even tougher anti-pollution rules after that to forcefully reduce greenhouse gas emissions and nudge 40% of U.S. drivers into electric vehicles by decade's end.

Tesla reaches milestone with first $1B quarterly profit

SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — Tesla's quarterly profit has surpassed $1 billion for the first time thanks to the electric car pioneer's ability to navigate through a pandemic-driven computer chip shortage that has caused major headaches for other automakers.


Airlines cite concerns about fuel shortages at some airports

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — The fuel needle is moving closer to "empty" at some U.S. airports.


Biden considers requiring all federal workers be vaccinated

WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden says that requiring all federal workers to get vaccinated against the coronavirus is "under consideration," as the more infectious Delta variant surges across the United States and a significant chunk of Americans still refuse the shot.

EXPLAINER: Employers have legal right to mandate COVID shots

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The state of California. New York City. Hospitals and nursing homes. Colleges and universities. Employers are putting COVID-19 vaccine requirements into place and it's getting attention. But what happens if workers refuse?

California, NYC to workers: Get vaccine or face weekly tests

California and New York City announced Monday that they would require all government employees to get the coronavirus vaccine or face weekly COVID-19 testing, and the Department of Veterans Affairs became the first major federal agency to require health care workers to receive the shot.

Moderna expanding kids vaccine study to better assess safety

WASHINGTON (AP) — Moderna said Monday it plans to expand the size of its COVID-19 vaccine study in younger children to better detect rare side effects, such as a type of heart inflammation recently flagged by U.S. health authorities.


Weakness in tech stocks pulls Wall Street back from records

Stocks closed lower on Wall Street, pulling major indexes back slightly from the records they set a day earlier.

A dozen years after last minimum wage hike, is $15 new norm?

WASHINGTON (AP) — The signs and banners are dotted along suburban commercial strips and hanging in shop windows and restaurants, evidence of a new desperation among America's service-industry employers: "Now Hiring, $15 an hour."

Consumer confidence up slightly in July

SILVER SPRING, Md. (AP) — U.S. consumer confidence was largely unchanged between June and July, holding to the lofty heights that were last seen near the beginning of 2020, just before the coronavirus pandemic throttled the U.S. and global economies.

IMF forecasts 6% global growth this year as economies reopen

WASHINGTON (AP) — The International Monetary Fund is sharply upgrading its economic outlook this year for the world's wealthy countries, especially the United States, as COVID-19 vaccinations help sustain solid rebounds from the pandemic recession. But the 190-country lending agency has downgraded its forecast for poorer countries, most of which are struggling to vaccinate.

Study: Only half of American households donate to charity

For the first time in nearly two decades, only half of U.S. households donated to a charity, according to a study released Tuesday. The findings confirm a trend worrying experts: Donations to charitable causes are reaching record highs, but the giving is done by a smaller and smaller slice of the population.

UPS earns $2.7 billion but volume dips as stores reopen

ATLANTA (AP) — Free from the pandemic lockdowns of last year, more shoppers are venturing into stores and relying just a bit less on brown UPS trucks.

Bitcoin jumps on speculation that Amazon considering crypto

NEW YORK (AP) — Bitcoin's price surged again Monday after speculation that Amazon may be entering the cryptocurrency sector after it posted a job seeking a "digital currency and blockchain product lead."


'This is how I'm going to die': Officers tell Jan. 6 stories

WASHINGTON (AP) — "This is how I'm going to die, defending this entrance," Capitol Police Sergeant Aquilino Gonell recalled thinking, testifying Tuesday at the emotional opening hearing of the congressional panel investigating the violent Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection.

AP-NORC poll: Many Republicans uneasy about party's future

WASHINGTON (AP) — Most Republicans want former President Donald Trump to have at least some influence over their party's direction even as many who side with the GOP say they are uneasy about its future.

Senators, White House in talks to finish infrastructure bill

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senators and the White House were locked in intense negotiations Tuesday to salvage a bipartisan infrastructure deal, with pressure mounting on all sides to wrap up talks and show progress on President Joe Biden's top priority.

Old bugaboo complicates US-Russia search for new arms deal

WASHINGTON (AP) — In their search for a new approach to arms control, Moscow and Washington are likely to soon encounter an old bugaboo: Russia's demand that the U.S. stop resisting limits on its missile defenses, which the Russians view as a long-term threat and the Americans see as a deterrent to war.

Biden's 1st visit to intel agency to contrast with Trump's

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is making his first visit to an agency of the U.S. intelligence community, looking to emphasize his confidence in national security leaders after his predecessor's incendiary battles against what he often derided as the "deep state."


SEC takeover: Expansion would just mean more power, wealth

Barring a dramatic change of direction, Texas and Oklahoma are moving toward taking the Red River Rivalry to the Southeastern Conference in a seismic shift that will have repercussions in college sports from coast to coast.


Records: State spent $11K on influencers for airfare promo

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee paid thousands of dollars for social media influencers to promote a contentious new initiative that uses $2.5 million in taxpayer dollars to offer flight vouchers largely to out-of-state residents.


Integrated Biometric Technology bringing HQ, 142 jobs to Franklin

Integrated Biometric Technology, LLC officials announced today that the company will establish new operations and locate its corporate headquarters in Franklin.


Tennessee museum to open Confederate bust to public

NASHVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee State Museum will soon allow the public to view the busts of three military leaders, including a former Confederate general and early Ku Klux Klan leader.


8 US attorney picks by Biden would include historic firsts

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is nominating eight new leaders for U.S. attorney positions across the country, including in the office overseeing the prosecutions of hundreds of defendants charged in the Jan. 6 insurrection at the Capitol.


Sales of new homes fall 6.6% in June

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sales of new homes fell for a third straight month in June, dropping by 6.6%. to the lowest level in more than a year.


Airports in the US West dealing with shortage of jet fuel

A shortage of jet fuel, coupled with supply chain issues and an urgent demand from firefighting aircraft, continues to cause problems at airports around the West.


China launches 6-month campaign to clean up apps

BEIJING (AP) — China's industry ministry has announced a 6-month campaign to clean up what it says are serious problems with internet apps violating consumer rights, cyber security and "disturbing market order."


UN chief: World hunger worsened by climate change, conflict

ROME (AP) — U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres on Monday warned that climate change and conflict are both a consequence and a driver of poverty, income inequality and food prices.

Carbon-capture pipelines offer climate aid; activists wary

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) — Two companies seeking to build thousands of miles of pipeline across the Midwest are promising the effort will aid rather than hinder the fight against climate change, though some environmental groups remain skeptical.


VA requires COVID-19 vaccination for health care workers

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Department of Veterans Affairs on Monday became the first major federal agency to require health care workers to get COVID-19 vaccines, as the aggressive delta variant spreads and some communities report troubling increases in hospitalizations among unvaccinated people.

With virus surge, US to keep travel restrictions for now

WASHINGTON (AP) — The United States served notice Monday that it will keep existing COVID-19 travel restrictions on international travel in place for now due to concerns about the surging infection rate  because of the delta variant.

Fauci: US headed in 'wrong direction' on coronavirus

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — The United States is in an "unnecessary predicament" of soaring COVID-19 cases fueled by unvaccinated Americans and the virulent delta variant, the nation's top infectious diseases expert said Sunday.

Pandemic Olympics endured heat, and now a typhoon's en route

TOKYO (AP) — First, the sun. Now: the wind and the rain.

Europe's summer tourism outlook dimmed by variants, rules

LONDON (AP) — Chaos and confusion over travel rules and measures to contain new virus outbreaks are contributing to another cruel summer for Europe's battered tourism industry.

French parliament OKs restaurant COVID pass, vaccine rules

PARIS (AP) — France's parliament approved a law early Monday requiring special virus passes for all restaurants and domestic travel and mandating vaccinations for all health workers.


Stocks shake off a wobbly start and finish slightly higher

Stocks shook off a wobbly start and finished slightly higher on Wall Street, edging major indexes a bit further into record territory.

Fed to discuss a pullback in economic aid with inflation up

WASHINGTON (AP) — With inflation uncomfortably high and the COVID-19 Delta variant raising economic concerns, a divided Federal Reserve will meet this week to discuss when and how it should dial back its ultra-low-interest rate policies.

Inflation fears and politics shape views of Biden economy

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden is banking on the idea of making life more affordable for middle-class families — and that's where the recent bout of inflation poses both a political and an economic risk.

Warming rivers in US West killing fish, imperiling industry

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Baby salmon are dying by the thousands in one California river, and an entire run of endangered salmon could be wiped out in another. Fishermen who make their living off adult salmon, once they enter the Pacific Ocean, are sounding the alarm as blistering heat waves and extended drought in the U.S. West raise water temperatures and imperil fish from Idaho to California.


Infrastructure talks face new trouble as pressure mounts

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senators ran into new problems Monday as they raced to seal a bipartisan infrastructure deal,  with pressure mounting on all sides to show progress on President Joe Biden's top priority.

'We have to get it right,' Dem vows as Jan. 6 probe begins

WASHINGTON (AP) — The chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, Bennie Thompson, didn't realize the severity of the Jan. 6 insurrection until his wife called him.

Biden, Iraqi PM to announce end of US combat mission in Iraq

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden and Iraqi Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi are expected to announce on Monday that they've agreed to end the U.S. military's combat mission in Iraq by the end of the year, according to a senior Biden administration official.

Pelosi appoints 2nd GOP critic of Trump to Jan. 6 committee

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Sunday named a second Republican critic of Donald Trump, Rep. Adam Kinzinger, to a special committee investigating the Capitol riot and pledged that the Democratic-majority panel will "get to the truth." Kinzinger said he "humbly accepted" the appointment even as his party's leadership is boycotting the inquiry.


Country star Morgan Wallen addresses his use of racial slur

NASHVILLE (AP) — In his first interview in six months, disgraced country star Morgan Wallen said it was ignorant of him to use a racial slur.


Injuries might force former Predator Weber to retire

MONTREAL (AP) — Montreal Canadiens general manager Marc Bergevin said captain Shea Weber will not play next season because of injuries and that the defenseman's career may be over.


Conservative Nashville talk radio host with COVID regrets vaccine hesitancy

NASHVILLE (AP) — A conservative talk radio host from Tennessee who had been a vaccine skeptic until he was hospitalized from COVID-19 now says his listeners should get vaccinated.

Vanderbilt's James Lawson institute honors rights activist

NASHVILLE (AP) — Vanderbilt University announced the launch Thursday of the James Lawson Institute for the Research and Study of Nonviolent Movements, honoring the influential activist who taught non-violence to protesters during the civil rights struggles last century.


Confederate bust moved from Tennessee Capitol building

NASHVILLE (AP) — The bust of a Confederate general and early Ku Klux Klan leader that had been prominently displayed inside the Tennessee Capitol for decades — over objections from Black lawmakers and activists — was removed from its pedestal Friday.


TVA launches web series to promote electric vehicles

KNOXVILLE (AP) — The Tennessee Valley Authority is launching a five-episode web series to promote electric vehicles, according to a news release from the utility.


Tennessee panel picks 3 options to fill judicial vacancy

NASHVILLE (AP) — A Tennessee panel has sent Gov. Bill Lee three options to fill a judicial vacancy that covers five counties.

$35M settlement reached in Tennessee opioid lawsuit

NASHVILLE (AP) — A drug manufacturer announced Thursday that it has reached a $35 million agreement that would settle a Tennessee lawsuit by local governments and a child born dependent to opioids over the company's role in the opioid epidemic, though steps remain to finalize the deal.


GM issues 2nd Bolt recall; faulty batteries can cause fires

DETROIT (AP) — General Motors is recalling some older Chevrolet Bolts for a second time to fix persistent battery problems that can set the electric cars ablaze.


Effort to fund racially diverse climate groups gets momentum

Efforts to increase how much philanthropic funding goes to minority-led environmental organizations are gaining momentum, with one group's push for transparency from the nation's top climate donors drawing big-name support.


Germany toughens rules for travel from Spain, Netherlands

BERLIN (AP) — Germany is listing Spain and the Netherlands as "high-incidence areas," meaning that most people arriving from those countries who aren't fully vaccinated will have to go into quarantine from next week.

In shift, GOP ramps up vaccine push as resistance hardens

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republican politicians are under increasing pressure to speak out to persuade COVID-19 vaccine skeptics to roll up their sleeves and take the shots as a new, more contagious variant sends caseloads soaring. But after months of ignoring — and, in some cases, stoking — misinformation about the virus, new polling suggests it may be too late to change the minds of many who are refusing.

Should vaccinated people mask up with COVID-19 cases rising?

Should vaccinated people mask up with COVID-19 cases rising?

England quarantine rules being relaxed to avoid shortages

LONDON (AP) — The British government has sought to ease food supply pressures in England by exempting more than 10,000 workers from quarantine rules that led to staff shortages and empty shelves and fears of panic-buying.


Wall Street closes a tumultuous week with more record highs

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street notched more record highs on Friday, ending the week on a strong note after opening it with a stumble.

Americans spend again, American Express profit surges

NEW YORK (AP) — Spending at restaurants, shops and entertainment venues has come back in force as vaccines become more common and it fueled a revenue surge at American Express during the second quarter.


Yellen outlines to Congress emergency measures on debt limit

WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen told Congress on Friday that she will start taking emergency measures next week to keep the government from an unprecedented default on the national debt, warning that a default would cause "irreparable harm to the U.S. economy and the livelihoods of all Americans."

As Herschel Walker eyes Senate run, a turbulent past emerges

ATLANTA (AP) — At first glance, Herschel Walker has a coveted political profile for a potential Senate candidate in Georgia.

Pelosi says 'deadly serious' Jan. 6 probe to go without GOP

WASHINGTON (AP) — Unfazed by Republican threats of a boycott, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi declared that a congressional committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection will take on its "deadly serious" work whether Republicans participate or not.


Willis makes 7 saves in Nashville's scoreless draw with Crew

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — Joe Willis made seven saves and Nashville played a scoreless draw with the Columbus Crew to extend its unbeaten streak to six games.


Texas, Oklahoma talk to SEC about joining league

The last time Texas got a wandering eye for another conference it fueled a series of realignments in college sports that nearly killed the Big 12.


Black lawmaker hopes Nashville highway project can right an old wrong

NASHVILLE (AP) — Harold Love Jr. raised his voice over the blare of traffic from the interstate above as he stood near the spot where his family's home was razed to rubble a half-century ago. Love recounted the fight his father put up in the 1960s, before he was born, to reroute the highway he was sure would stifle and isolate Nashville's Black community.


Gov defends agency's vaccine chief firing, outreach rollback

NASHVILLE (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Lee on Thursday came out in full defense of his administration's firing of the state's vaccination chief and rollback of outreach for childhood vaccines, both of which have sparked national scrutiny over Tennessee's inoculation efforts against COVID-19.

Confederate bust to be removed from Tennessee Capitol

NASHVILLE (AP) — A decadeslong effort to remove a bust of a Confederate general and early Ku Klux Klan leader from the Tennessee Capitol cleared its final hurdle Thursday, with state leaders approving the final vote needed to allow the statue to be relocated to a museum.

Lawmakers: Parental OK needed for minors to get COVID shot

NASHVILLE (AP) — Two Tennessee Republican lawmakers said Wednesday they received assurances that the state's health agency won't vaccinate minors for COVID-19 without parental consent, doubling back on a decades-old provision about children's vaccination rights that was a lightning rod in the firing of the state's top vaccine official.


Tennessee to add electric car charging in state parks

NASHVILLE (AP) — Tennessee officials say they are partnering on an initiative to add electric vehicle charging stations at state parks.


Hamilton Co. DA approved supplemental pay for relatives

CHATTANOOGA (AP) — Tennessee's district attorney for Hamilton County used county funds to supplement state pay for his wife and brother-in-law, the Chattanooga Times Free Press reported.

Garland: To help combat gun violence, confirm ATF leader

WASHINGTON (AP) — Attorney General Merrick Garland said Thursday he hoped the Senate would confirm the head of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, to help front the federal effort against gun violence.


Existing US home sales up in June; prices reach new heights

Sales of previously occupied U.S. homes rose in June, snapping a four-month losing streak, while strong demand for higher-end properties and ultra-low mortgage rates helped push prices to new highs.

Mercedes sketches out all-electric scenario by decade's end

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Daimler AG's luxury car brand Mercedes-Benz says it is stepping up its transition to electric cars, doubling the share of sales planned by 2025 and sketching out a market scenario in which new car sales would "in essence" be fully electric by the end of the decade.


Southwest, American post 2Q profits as air travel picks up

DALLAS (AP) — American Airlines and Southwest Airlines both posted second-quarter profits on Thursday thanks to generous federal pandemic relief that covers most of their labor costs.


Dutch data protection authority fines TikTok over privacy

THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — The Netherlands' Data Protection Authority said Thursday it has fined TikTok 750,000 euros ($885,000) for not offering a privacy statement in Dutch, saying many children who use the popular video sharing app would be unable to understand the information.


Experts: Spend opioid settlement funds on fighting opioids

As a $26 billion settlement over the toll of opioids looms, some public health experts are citing the 1998 agreement with tobacco companies as a cautionary tale of runaway government spending and missed opportunities for saving more lives.


Biden says getting COVID-19 vaccine 'gigantically important'

CINCINNATI (AP) — President Joe Biden expressed pointed frustration over the slowing COVID-19 vaccination rate in the U.S. and pleaded that it's "gigantically important" for Americans to step up and get inoculated against the virus as it surges once again.

Tokyo new virus cases near 2,000 a day before Olympics open

TOKYO (AP) — Tokyo hit another six-month high in new COVID-19 cases on Thursday, one day before the Olympics begin, as worries grow of a worsening of infections during the Games.

AP FACT CHECK: Biden goes too far in assurances on vaccines

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden offered an absolute guarantee Wednesday that people who get their COVID-19 vaccines are completely protected from infection, sickness and death from the coronavirus. The reality is not that cut and dried.


Indexes inch higher on Wall Street, preserving weekly gains

Major indexes edged higher on Wall Street after a day of muted trading, preserving their gains for the week.

Small businesses lifted by return of summer tourists

Small businesses in the U.S. that depend on tourism and vacationers say business is bouncing back, as Americans rebook postponed trips and spend freely on food, entertainment and souvenirs.

ECB says low rates to stay until the job is done

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — Facing unease over the spread of a more-contagious variant of the coronavirus, the European Central Bank said it would maintain its stimulus in the form of ultra-low interest rates until inflation "durably" reaches its 2% target.

US jobless claims rise to 419,000 from a pandemic low

WASHINGTON (AP) — The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits rose last week from the lowest point of the pandemic, even as the job market appears to be rebounding on the strength of a reopened economy.

Germany's Merkel says pipeline deal with US good for Ukraine

BERLIN (AP) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday that a compromise deal that will allow the completion of a Russian gas pipeline to Europe without the imposition of further U.S. sanctions is "good for Ukraine."

CSX 2Q profit more than doubled as railroad hauled 27% more

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — CSX railroad's second-quarter profit more than doubled as the economy continued to rebound from the depths of the coronavirus pandemic and it hauled 27% more freight than a year ago.


Pelosi says Jan. 6 panel to move ahead without GOP's choices

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi says a committee investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection "will do the job it set out to do" despite Republicans' vow to boycott the probe.

Dems renew questions about FBI background check of Kavanaugh

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats are raising new concerns about the thoroughness of the FBI's background investigation into Supreme Court Justice Brett Kavanaugh after the FBI revealed that it had received thousands of tips and had provided "all relevant" ones to the White House counsel's office.

US imposes new Cuba sanctions over human rights abuses

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Biden administration announced new sanctions Thursday against a Cuban official and a government special brigade that it says was involved in human rights abuses during a government crackdown on protests on the island earlier this month.

Dems hit McConnell, who says GOP won't back debt limit boost

WASHINGTON (AP) — Senate Democrats accused Republicans Wednesday of a "shameless, cynical" ploy that would damage the economy and the government's credit rating after the chamber's GOP leader said his party would vote against raising the federal debt limit.

AP-NORC poll: Parties split on some infrastructure proposals

WASHINGTON (AP) — The overwhelming majority of Americans -- about 8 in 10 -- favor plans to increase funding for roads, bridges and ports and for pipes that supply drinking water. But that's about as far as Democrats and Republicans intersect on infrastructure, according to a new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research.

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