Bryce Bird, director of the state's Division of Air Quality and Amanda Smith, executive director of the Utah Department of Environmental Quality explain the new air quality alert system on November 26, 2012.
Utah’s new air pollution alert system has some health advocacy groups concerned. Under the new system announced Monday by the Utah Division of Air Quality, there will be fewer days that will trigger a Red Air Action alert. Red Air days are considered to be unhealthy for everyone. In the current system, they are triggered when PM2.5 levels are at 35 micrograms per cubic meter. The new system raises the threshold to 55.
The Utah Supreme Court has ruled in favor of a Florida father who did not want his daughter put up for adoption here. The Court found that Utah’s adoption law was "constitutionally defective" in this case.
Six Democratic candidates hoping to fill a vacant state senate seat met in a debate last night organized by the Alliance for a Better Utah. The seat in Senate district 2 is left open by Ben McAdams who was elected the Salt Lake County Mayor earlier this month.
Pioneer Theatre Company is putting on a musical production based on Charles Dickens’ classic story, “A Christmas Carol”, but there’s a twist. They’re asking the audience to participate.
This will be Karen Azenberg’s first production as the new Artistic Director of Pioneer Theatre Company, and she’s trying something a little different. Azenberg is asking people to take a lesson from Ebenezer Scrooge – the quintessential miser who learns to give after a transformative encounter with the ghosts of Christmas past, present and yet to come.
A market for locally made arts and hand-made goods opened Friday at Gallivan Center in Salt Lake City. The Downtown Holiday Market consists of about a dozen festive red huts decorated with lights, and a large tent which houses numerous artists and crafts people. Emily Cooper is a vendor selling framed drawings of owls. Cooper told KUER that at the Market, it’s not Black Friday, it’s Plaid Friday.
City Creek Center is hosting its first ever Black Friday. No one is quite sure how much money the Salt Lake City shopping center will bring in this holiday, but expectations are high.
Linda Wardell is General Manager of City Creek Center. When asked about expectations for the holidays, she laughed.
“It’s a great question,” said Wardell, “We still have a lot of first-time visitors to City Creek Center. That does make it unique for us, and a bit daunting for us when we start thinking about our first time holiday season.”
For those who enjoy spending time in the Wasatch Canyons, traffic and parking can make trips difficult. Salt Lake County officials are considering some changes that could alleviate problems in the future. The recommendations are the result of a year-long series of canyon transportation studies which are now complete.
Let's turn now to the urgent diplomatic efforts underway. Secretary of State Clinton is now in Cairo, meeting with Egyptian leaders in efforts to reach a ceasefire. NPR's Leila Fadel joins us from Cairo to discuss the latest.
LEILA FADEL, BYLINE: Good morning.
MONTAGNE: So what do you know about what's happening on the diplomatic front today there in Cairo?
There were 410,000 first-time claims for unemployment insurance last week, down 41,000 from the level of the week before — when the number of applications soared because of the lingering effects of Superstorm Sandy.
Good morning. I'm Renee Montagne. As the story goes, pardoning a turkey dates back to Lincoln, when his young son Tad begged his father to let the White House Thanksgiving meal live. Today, President Obama pardons two turkeys - Cobbler and Gobbler. Ahead of their big moment, the birds have been staying at the swanky W hotel, nibbling on organic meals prepared by the hotel's chef. And once pardoned, the turkeys will retire to Mount Vernon. It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.
Good morning. I'm Linda Wertheimer with a Thanksgiving dessert that goes way past pumpkin pie a la mode. An Arizona ice cream shop is creating an entire Thanksgiving dinner in ice cream form. Scooptacular is offering sweet potato ice cream, also cranberry. And for the adventurous, corn and even turkey by the scoop. Can you get hot fudge with that? Would you want hot fudge with that? It's MORNING EDITION. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
Originally published on Sun November 25, 2012 7:58 am
After a week of bloodshed, Israel and fighters in the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip agreed to "hold fire" beginning at 2 p.m. ET today, Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohamed Kamel Amr announced at a joint news conference this afternoon with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Egypt had been trying to broker a truce to end the exchange of rockets and air strikes between Israel and militants in Gaza.
We'll post more on the agreement, which was announced at 12:35 p.m. ET., as the story develops.
NPR's business news starts with a costly misstep by HP.
The California-based technology giant is writing down an $8.8 billion loss. CEO Meg Whitman says much of that comes from new revelations about Autonomy, a software company HP bought last year. She says the company lied about the state of its finances. HP plans to sue, and has asked authorities in both the U.S. and the U.K. to investigate. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.
In Washington, lawmakers are trying to work out a deal to keep the economy from going over the fiscal cliff. Many economists predict those automatic tax hikes combined with deep spending cuts set to go into effect on New Year's Day would throw the economy back into recession.
A group of top CEOs has been urging lawmakers to reach a deal to keep that from happening. Mark Bertolini is one of them. He's CEO of the health insurer Aetna and he said tax increases are as important as spending cuts. We called him to talk more.
Afghan officials welcomed the release of Taliban prisoners by Pakistan in an attempt to jump-start a shaky peace process with the militant group. But many Afghans are wondering about the timing and the motive. They say mistrust born of decades of duplicity won't vanish with a few declarations or small gestures.
Secretary-General of the Afghan High Peace Council Mohammad Stanekzai was part of the delegation that recently traveled to Pakistan to discuss how the countries can cooperate and bring the Taliban to the negotiating table.
There has been a small but potentially important breakthrough in the faltering Afghan peace process. In what is considered a good-faith gesture, Pakistan last week released at least nine Afghan Taliban prisoners. The move is seen as part of an emerging new strategy by Pakistan as it eyes the looming drawdown of U.S. and Western troops in Afghanistan.
Uncle Sam wants you to email your doctor. A federal law passed in 2009 says that physicians have to start offering their patients online communication, or Medicare will start docking how much it pays them in the future.
Some patients hope that having online access to their doctors will mean they can cut down on how often they have to go to the doctor's office. But fresh research suggests that patients with online access actually schedule more office visits.
Like many other brick-and-mortar retailers, Wal-Mart is trying to attract shoppers increasingly accustomed to online shopping. In one experiment, it's offering same-day delivery in four select markets.
With the holiday shopping season shifting into high gear, retailers are doing everything they can to win consumer dollars. Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, is trying out one new strategy this season: same-day delivery. In a few select markets, it's joining online retail giant Amazon and eBay's "Now" service in offering super-quick delivery, straight to your door.
A few months ago, I let you in on a little secret about Greek yogurt. Not all of this extra-thick, protein-rich yogurt is made the old-style way, by straining liquid out of it it. Some companies are creating that rich taste by adding thickeners, such as powdered protein and starch.
Thanksgiving is Thursday, and that means more than 43 million Americans will be on the road, driving to family gatherings. For many parents, the crowded roads can bring another challenge: Keeping a 9-year-old entertained along the way. And sometimes, DVDs are not enough. These days, kids love to tinker with smartphones and tablets, as well.
With that in mind, NPR's Renee Montagne spoke with an actual 9-year-old, Jane Frauenfelder, and her father, Mark. Together, they host the podcast Apps for Kids.
Originally published on Wed November 21, 2012 5:30 am
Despite my outward 30-something appearance, deep inside my chest beats the heart of an old Jewish grandmother. I want to make my friends sweaters when it's getting cold, or throw them parades when they've mastered some feat. But mostly, I want to feed them. Especially when they need a little help.
Over the past few years, I've brought dozens of meals to friends who are nursing new babies or broken bones. And I've learned a few things about how to help when it comes to feeding people in need — specifically, that an extra meal or two for the freezer can be the best gift of all.
A trivia question for you: Who today is the leading jockey who was born in the U.S.?
The answer is Rosie Napravnik. Yes, of all our American jockeys, the one with the best record is a woman.
Napravnik's mounts have earned more than $11 million this year, and none of the seven jocks who have earned more began life in this country. So, even in a dangerously athletic job like race-riding, a woman can sometimes compete straight up with men.
Greg Taylor holds up his release papers after he was unanimously exonerated by a three-judge panel in Raleigh, N.C., in 2010. Taylor, who had been in prison since 1993 for murder, is now suing several people who worked at a crime lab, claiming their erroneous findings landed him in jail.
Three years ago, a report from the National Academy of Sciences exposed serious problems in the nation's forensic science community. It found not only a lack of peer-reviewed science in the field, but also insufficient oversight in crime laboratories.
Little has changed since that report came out, but concerns are growing as scandals keep surfacing at crime labs across the country.
Originally published on Tue November 20, 2012 4:19 pm
The 2012 general election may be slipping into the past, but elements of President Obama's successful campaign aren't likely to go away anytime soon.
Just as it did after the president's 2008 election, the Obama campaign appears very likely to keep alive parts of the grass-roots effort that contributed to victory. And, just like four years ago, the idea would be to use the corps of Obama organizers and volunteers to push for the president's second-term agenda.