Sunday, May 26, 2024

AP morning news brief – May 19, 2023

by BIZ Magazine

Detroit enclave built on auto industry struggles under $20M water debt

HIGHLAND PARK, Mich. (AP) — A small enclave of Detroit is considering municipal bankruptcy to help rid itself of a decades-old water debt that has grown to about $20 million and threatens to swamp the already financially struggling city. Highland Park and the Great Lakes Water Authority are in court-ordered mediation over how the debt will be paid. It’s a hit in the decline of Highland Park, which was built a century ago on the strength of the area’s auto industry and had more than 50,000 residents in 1930. Now, fewer than 9,000 people live in the city, which only expects about $12 million in revenue for the coming fiscal year.

More than 30 million US drivers don’t know if they’re at risk from a rare but dangerous airbag blast

DETROIT (AP) — More than 33 million people in the United States are driving vehicles that contain a potentially deadly threat: Airbag inflators that in rare cases can explode in a collision and spew shrapnel. Few of them know it. And because of a dispute between federal safety regulators and an airbag parts manufacturer, they aren’t likely to find out anytime soon. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is demanding that the manufacturer, ARC Automotive of Knoxville, Tennessee, recall 67 million inflators that could explode with such force as to blow apart a metal canister and expel shrapnel. But ARC is refusing to do so, setting up a possible court fight with the agency.

Most say pair debt limit increase with deficit cuts, but few following debate closely: AP-NORC poll

WASHINGTON (AP) — A new poll finds that most U.S. adults say they are highly concerned about how the nation’s economy would be affected if the debt limit isn’t increased and the government can’t pay its debts. That’s according to a survey from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The poll shows 6 in 10 adults say they want any increase in the debt limit to be coupled with agreed-upon terms for reducing the federal budget deficit. At the same time, Americans are more likely to disapprove than approve of how President Joe Biden and congressional negotiators in both political parties are handling negotiations.

TikTok content creators file lawsuit against Montana over first-in-nation law banning app

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Five TikTok content creators have filed a lawsuit to overturn a planned ban on the video sharing app in Montana. They argued in a legal complaint filed in federal court in Missoula on Wednesday that the law is an unconstitutional violation of free speech rights. They also say the state doesn’t have authority over matters of national security. Republican Governor Greg Gianforte signed the bill into law Wednesday and said it would protect Montana residents’ private data and personal information from being harvested by the Chinese government. The ban is scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2024.

Sean Penn, backing WGA strike, says AI dispute is ‘a human obscenity’ at Cannes Film Festival

CANNES, France (AP) — Sean Penn has strongly backed the current Hollywood screenwriters strike while speaking at the Cannes Film Festival on Friday, saying the dispute over artificial intelligence is “a human obscenity.” Penn addressed the ongoing Writers Guild of America strike in a press conference for his new film, “Black Flies,” director Jean-Stéphane Sauvaire’s harrowing, gritty drama about New York paramedics. Asked about the strike, Penn says “the industry has been upending the writers and actors and directors for a very long time.” Penn’s comments come as the potential for a wider work stoppage in Hollywood may be growing, with directors and actors considering their next steps.

Stock market today: Wall Street ticks higher as it heads for best week since March

NEW YORK (AP) — Wall Street is ticking higher as it heads toward its best week since March, despite a long list of worries hanging over it. The S&P 500 was 0.2% higher in midday trading Friday and on pace for a 2% gain for the week. That would break a long, listless stretch where it failed to rise or fall by 1% for six straight weeks. The Dow was also up 0.2%, while the Nasdaq composite was nearly flat. Rising hopes that the U.S. government can avoid a disastrous default on its debt have been one of the main engines for the market this week.

Britain unveils $1.2B strategy to boost computer chip industry

LONDON (AP) — Britain’s government has unveiled its long-awaited semiconductor strategy. It’s catching up with similar efforts by Western allies seeking to reduce reliance on Asian production of the computer chips in everything from smartphones to washing machines. Under the U.K. plan revealed Friday, the country’s semiconductor industry will get up to $1.2 billion in government investment over the next decade. The amount is dwarfed by the U.S. Chips Act and the European Union’s chip program, which are offering tens of billions. The strategy is aimed at boosting the domestic chip industry, as well as alleviating supply chain disruption and protecting Britain’s national security.

False claims of a stolen election thrive unchecked on Twitter even as Musk promises otherwise

NEW YORK (AP) — Election falsehoods are thriving on Twitter after former President Donald Trump dug in on those claims during a recent CNN town hall. That’s going on despite Twitter owner Elon Musk insisting that stolen-election claims on the platform “will be corrected.” An analysis for The Associated Press shows the 10 most widely shared tweets promoting a “rigged election” narrative in the five days after the town hall have not been labeled or removed. Tech accountability experts say monitoring content on such a large scale is difficult. But they say Musk has reinstated notorious election deniers, overhauled the site’s verification system and gutted much of the staff that had moderated such posts.

Russia-Georgia flights resume despite protests, strained ties

TBILISI, Georgia (AP) — Direct flights have resumed between Russia and Georgia amid protests and sharp criticism from the South Caucasus nation’s president. The move on Friday came just over a week after the Kremlin unexpectedly lifted a four-year-old ban despite rocky relations. Protesters gathered at Tbilisi airport to meet the first flight arriving from Russia since July 2019. They held signs and shouted slogans criticizing Moscow and what they said were the Georgian government’s attempts at rapprochement. Russia and Georgia fought a short war in 2008 that ended in Tbilisi losing control of two Moscow-friendly separatist regions and the rupture of diplomatic ties.

Philanthropy helps boost manufacturing in areas with high job vacancies

CLEVELAND (AP) — Manufacturers in Cleveland and other cities, including Buffalo, Chicago, and Milwaukee, are dealing with a retiring workforce that’s left thousands of jobs unfilled. Nationally, the industry’s job gap is projected to hit 2 million by 2030, according to the National Association of Manufacturers. And now with $5 million in federal stimulus money, they expect to help create thousands of new manufacturing jobs over the next few years. Philanthropy is investing millions of dollars in the Manufacturing Advocacy & Growth Network, a Cleveland nonprofit consulting group that’s leading the hiring push. The Cleveland Foundation has given $2.5 million as a capital building grant to the nonprofit and to help it set up the internships.

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