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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- A Wind Chill Advisory has...

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Orange County Sheriff's Department(LOS ANGELES)...

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iStock(SAN ANTONIO) -- Two people are dead and ...

Scientists find evidence of oldest impact structure on Earth

beyhanyazar/iStock(NEW YORK) -- New geologic data reveals that a crater in Western Australia is likely the oldest impact structure on Earth, according to a paper published Tuesday in the journal Nature Communications.

At roughly 2.2 billion years old, the approximately 40-mile wide Yarrabubba crater was previously considered to be among the Earth...

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/21/2020

Three rockets fired into Baghdad's Green Zone as protests grow; no casualties

CT757fan/iStock(BAGHDAD) -- Three rockets were fired into Baghdad's Green Zone, the heavily fortified area of the capital that houses the U.S. embassy, government buildings and U.S. service members.

The Katyusha rockets landed "in the vicinity of the Green Zone," but caused no casualties, according to Iraqi officials.

A U.S. military spokesman in...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Prince Harry leaves UK for Canada to reunite with Meghan, Archie

BEN STANSALL/AFP via Getty Images(LONDON) -- Prince Harry has left the U.K. and is flying to Canada to reunite with his wife, Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, and their 8-month-old son Archie, according to ABC News royal contributor Omid Scobie.

Harry, 35, boarded a flight late Monday afternoon, according to Scobie. Buckingham Palace has not comme...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Prince William, Kate step out at reception after Harry, Meghan royal family exit

iStock(LONDON) -- Prince William and Kate, the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, made their first public appearance Monday since the announcement of Prince Harry and Meghan's exit from the royal family.

William and Kate hosted a reception at Buckingham Palace on behalf of Queen Elizabeth to mark the U.K.-Africa Investment Summit that took place in L...

Author: Dana Schaeffer
Posted: 01/20/2020

Prince Harry makes first comments on split from royal family

Chris Jackson/Getty Images for Sentebale(LONDON) -- Prince Harry has made his first public comments about the decision he and his wife Meghan, the Duchess of Sussex, made to no longer be "working members" of Britain's royal family.

"The decision that I have made for my wife and I to step back, is not one I made lightly," Harry, 35, said Sunday n...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

17 new cases of SARS-like virus reported in China, officials say

nopparit/iStock(BEIJING) -- Chinese officials have announced 17 new cases of the new coronavirus, a SARS-like illness that began to spread in Wuhan, China, in December.

The total number of coronavirus infections in Wuhan, the epicenter of the outbreak, is now at 62, Hong Kong's Department of Health reported in a statement.

Two patients, both older...

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/19/2020

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex are no longer 'working members' of royal family: Buckingham Palace

Paul Grover- WPA Pool/Getty Images(LONDON) --  Prince Harry and Meghan Markle are no longer "working members" of the royal family, according to Buckingham Palace.

With the queen's blessing, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex are embarking on the "next chapter of their lives" by stepping back from their royal duties and will no longer receive public f...

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/18/2020

London man reports fake bomb threat to delay flight he was running late for: Police

Sussex Police Department(LONDON) --  A London man running late for his flight reported a fake bomb threat to try and delay it, police said.

Rashidul Islam, 32, was going to meet his fiancee in Marrakech, but had issues with public transport on the way to his flight out of Gatwick and worried he would miss it, according to a statement from Sussex ...

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/18/2020

Australian wildfires prompt $11,000 fine for tossing lit cigarette out of car

Brett Hemmings/Getty Images(SYDNEY) --  Drivers in Australia can now face a penalty of up to $11,000 if they are caught tossing a lit cigarette out of their car.

The new punishment, which went into effect on Friday in New South Wales, can also apply to automobile passengers if they throw a cigarette. Passengers would be fined $1,320.

The hefty fin...

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/18/2020

Fact checkers expose alleged news site run by far-right media company

spyarm/iStock(NEW YORK) -- EU DisinfoLab, in cooperation with newsroom fact-checkers, has uncovered a far-right Polish media operation running a website that was making slight changes to real, existing stories and re-posting them to sow discord.

The non-governmental organization, which collaborates with newsrooms throughout the European Union to ...

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/18/2020

Military: 11 US service members treated for blast injuries in Iran missile attack

scyther5/iStock(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. military confirmed late Thursday that some American troops were evacuated for blast injuries sustained in Iran's ballistic missile attacks on bases in Iraq last week.

Ten service members injured at Al Asad Air Base in western Iraq were flown out of the country on Wednesday, and another service member was f...

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/17/2020

Iran's supreme leader: Military base strike took shot at US stance as a 'superpower'

Iranian Supreme Leader Press Office / Handout/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images(TEHRAN, Iran) -- Ayatollah Ali Khamenei said Friday that Iran's attack against a U.S. military base was "a blow to the U.S. image as a superpower."

Iran's supreme leader, who was leading prayers in Tehran for the first time in eight years, used the occasion to praise t...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/17/2020

"For 35 years -- I've only wanted Pamela": Producer Jon Peters marries Pamela Anderson in secret ceremony

Peters and Anderson in 1989/ Photo by Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- It's said that love waits for no one, but if you're veteran producer Jon Peters, it does.  The Hollywood Reporter notes he tied the knot with Pamela Anderson in a private ceremony in Malibu on Jan. 20 -- some 30 years after they first dated.

It is the fifth marriage for both the former Baywatch star and the producer of movies including Batman and two versions of A Star Is Born -- the earlier incarnation of which starred his former flame, Barbra Streisand.

"There are beautiful girls everywhere. I could have my pick, but -- for 35 years -- I’ve only wanted Pamela," the 74-year-old filmmaker notes, recalling that when they first met, Anderson, now 52, was 19. "In 30 years, our age difference won't mean so much," he said he told her at the time. 

"Pamela has never seen her full potential as an artist," he gushed to the trade. "She has yet to shine in a real way. There is much more to her than meets the eye, or I wouldn't love her so much."

For her part, Anderson literally waxed poetic about their relationship. "He's been there all along/Never failed me/I’m ready now and he’s ready too," in her poem she sent to the trade about the "original 'bad boy'" of Hollywood. "I'm a lucky woman/Proof God has a plan," she concluded.

Anderson was previously married to Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee -- he of their infamous sex tape -- with whom she has two adult sons. She was also married to Kid Rock and producer Rick Salomon, whom she married twice.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.
Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

'John Wick', 'Hobbs & Shaw' director David Leitch directing big-screen version of Kung Fu

Eric Charbonneau/Universal Pictures(LOS ANGELES) -- Stuntman turned director David Leitch, who called the shots on the first John Wick with Chad Stahelski before tackling the hits Deadpool 2 and Fast & Furious Presents: Hobbs & Shaw on his own, is on a vintage martial arts kick -- pardon the pun.

Leitch, who will reportedly direct a remake of the Bruce Lee classic Enter the Dragon for Warner Bros., has just signed on to also direct a big-screen version of the 1972 TV series Kung Fu for Universal.

The series, which ran until 1975, featured Kill Bill star David Carradine as Kwai Chang Caine, a Chinese Shaolin monk and martial arts master trying to stay on the peaceful path as he wandered the American Old West.  But of course, every week there would be some excuse for him to fight someone.

Ironically, Bruce Lee was passed over for the role of Caine in the series in favor of the non-Asian Carradine.  It's also been asserted that Lee himself developed the idea for Kung Fu, which was then appropriated by the show's producers.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.
Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

Netflix grabs Bradley Cooper's 'A Star Is Born' directorial follow-up, about composer Leonard Bernstein

ABC/Craig Sjodin(LOS ANGELES) --  After his directorial debut, A Star Is Born, was nominated for seven Oscars, fans have been wondering what Bradley Cooper would be up to next behind the camera.

Now Variety reports Netflix is betting Cooper's next directorial effort, a drama about famed composer Leonard Bernstein, could be on next year's Oscars short list.

The trade notes that the project will stream on Netflix but also hit theaters, in an attempt to make it eligible for awards season.  Netflix's The Irishman, The Two Popes, and Marriage Story are all nominated for Academy Awards this year.

By the way, Cooper's also headed to the Oscars again next month: he's one of the producers of the Oscar-nominated Joker.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

Jason Momoa shares sweet photos of visit to children's hospital

ABC/Rick Rowell(PENNSYLVANIA) -- The King of Atlantis himself, Jason Momoa, recently delighted fans as he paid a visit to patients healing at a children's hospital.

The star shared heartwarming photos on his Instagram page of himself greeting a number of kids at UPMC children's hospital of Pittsburgh, writing, "The greatest part of him being aquaman is making children happy spreading aloha."

One photo showed the hulking star mock-arm wrestling a young patient in a wheelchair as they're all smiles.

"Me and Joshua bet that if he beat me in arm wresting he gets to have my trident," Momoa wrote in reference to one of his young fans. "See u on set of Aquaman 2 Joshua. Stay strong."

This isn't the first time Momoa has come through for the children. In July, the former Game of Thrones actor worked with the Make a Wish Foundation. He also opened a climbing wall for kids at the Variety Boys and Girls Club in Los Angeles.

Momoa can currently be seen in the Apple TV Plus series See, and will once again diving into the undersea world as Aquaman when production on Aquaman 2 starts this year.  The film comes out in 2022.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

Billy Porter dishes on his "Fab G" role in 'Cinderella', says film's inspired by the "#MeToo era"

ABC News/Steve Iervolino(NEW YORK) -- Emmy-winner Billy Porter will officially get to live out a lifelong dream in Sony's upcoming re-imagined Cinderella.

Porter will play the fairy godmother in the movie musical, which stars Camila Cabello in the titular role. Porter tells ABC Audio that he's already renamed and remixed his new gig.

"I know that I'm the fairy -- the Fab G," he says. "The slot is the fairy godmother. The slot, I keep joking is the Whitney Houston part. So I get to play the Whitney Houston part. I'm really excited about that, because I always wanted to be the male Whitney Houston. So here I get to live out that dream."

As you may recall, Houston played the fairy godmother in The Wonderful World of Disney's Cinderella in 1997. She starred opposite Brandy, who played the pauper-turned-princess in the film. Although he remains tight-lipped about the details of his role, Porter says fans can expect a "fierce" wardrobe and some quality music.

"You know, I've seen the costume, I've developed it with the costume designer. It's fierce," he reveals. "And I know the song that I get to sing. I can't tell you any of it, any of that. But like, it's good."

Regarding the film, which is based on an original idea from James Corden, Porter shares the perfect description.

"I call it a Cinderella for the #Metoo era," he says. 

Cinderella is set to hit theaters in 2021.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

Did Ed Sheeran play an alien in 'The Rise of Skywalker?'

Lucasfilm(LONDON) -- Pop star Ed Sheeran may have had a secret cameo in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker -- but it's not like you would have recognized him or anything.

Last year, it was rumored that Ed would be playing a Stormtrooper in the latest installment of the Star Wars franchise, after the release of a behind-the-scenes video showing the singer wearing the Stormtrooper costume on set.

But now, according to an article on Oh My Disney titled “7 Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker Easter Eggs You Might’ve Missed,” it’s been revealed that Ed actually plays an alien member of the resistance.  Since the actor who's playing this particular alien wears a costume that covers his entire head, it could be anyone under there...including Ed.

So, is it really true? The Stars Wars official Twitter account tweeted the article, so it would seem to be legit, though Ed has yet to confirm it.

It wouldn’t be the first time Ed scored a bit part in one of his favorite series: Who could forget his brief but much-ridiculed cameo in Game of Thrones?

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Stephen Iervolino
Posted: 01/21/2020

Jennifer Aniston reveals just how far she went to keep her SAG Awards gown wrinkle free

Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic(LOS ANGELES) -- Any woman in the history of ever knows that some dress materials wrinkle a lot worse than others. That said, Jennifer Aniston knew she was playing with fire when she donned a form-fitting satin dress for Sunday's SAG Awards.

Thankfully, the Golden Globe winner seemed to know exactly how to keep those pesky creases from forming on her silky smooth ivory gown.

The Morning Show actress demonstrated on Monday the extreme measures she underwent to ensure a picture-perfect entrance on the red carpet. 

Aniston posted a photo of her reclining all the way back in the back seat of her ride to the award show with the cheeky caption, "No wrinkles... harder than it looks!"

The 50-year-old, who went on to win the SAG Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series for The Morning Show, is flashing the peace sign and a proud open-mouthed grin at the camera as she lays practically flat as her knees comically press against the front seat of the vehicle.

The second photo in her hilarious Instagram post shows the aftermath of the SAG Awards, with her actor statue perched atop her marble tub.  In addition, the dress Aniston labored to keep wrinkle-free is hilariously draped over the rim of the tub next to her shoes that look like they had been kicked off.

"Somewhere between these two photos, my peers gave me a gift I will cherish and a night I will never forget," Writes the Murder Mystery actress. "Thank you @sagawards, @themorningshow, and our incredible cast and crew. Let’s get back to work!"

The Morning Show, which is available exclusively on Apple TV+, was recently greenlit for a second season, which will premiere in November 2020.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/21/2020

'The Bachelor' recap: Sydney calls out Alayah in front of Peter, leading to a shocking elimination

ABC/John Fleenor(LOS ANGELES) -- On Monday’s episode of ABC’s The Bachelor, Hannah Ann and Kelsey attempted to smooth things out between them, while a new rivalry between Sydney and Alayah led to a shocking elimination.

The episode kicked off with a one-on-one date between Victoria P. and Peter, who enjoy a fun day of line dancing, before Victoria confides to him a heartbreaking story of her father’s death when she was very young, which led to her mother’s slide into drug addiction.  The tragic series of events took a toll on Victoria, who admittedly feels insecure in her romantic relationships.  However, she confesses to being smitten with Peter, which makes him he feel “inspired” by Victoria, so he offers her the date rose.

Meanwhile, back at the mansion, Hannah Ann and Kelsey try in vain to put "Champagne-gate" behind them, to the frustration of the other ladies.

Another group date includes Kiarra, Sarah, Tammy, Kelley, Shiann, Savannah, Sydney and Alayah, who are warned that Peter “likes surprises” and hopes they do too.

The first surprise is the return of The Bachelor Season 23’s Demi Burnett, who helped out Hannah Brown during season 15 of The Bachelorette, and wants to do the same for Peter.  She brings along a couple of “henchmen” who rouse the girls out of bed with an early morning pillow fight.  Next, all the girls are asked to choose one of eight shopping bags, each containing some form of sleep ware, leading to the next surprise: an extreme pillow fight at a packed local saloon – emceed by Bachelor host Chris Harrison and actor/comedian Fred Willard. 

Alayah “The Royal Pain” and Sydney “Syd Vicious” are the two finalists deemed worthy of fighting it out for Pete’s heart.  Alayah decides to throw her weight around -- literally -- by sitting on Sydney and is declared the winner.  That victory only riles Sydney all the more, who already has daggers out for the former beauty pageant queen.

She exacts her revenge by telling Peter that Alayah is fake, both privately and in front of the other ladies on the date, explaining that she doesn’t want him to get hurt.  Peter believes Sydney is sincere and offers her the group date rose.

The following day, Harrison informs all of the ladies that instead of the usual pre-rose ceremony cocktail party, Peter will be joining them for a pool party.  It’s there he discovers that several of the other women share Sydney’s opinion of Alayah.

However, it’s Victoria P. who delivers the final bombshell.  It turns out that, unbeknownst to the show’s producers, she and Alayah knew each other before the show, and that Alayah has pressured Sydney to keep their friendship a secret.

There's more.  Victoria also disclosed that Alayah was "open to all the opportunities that will come after this" even if she didn't marry Peter, adding, "So, maybe she's not the one for you."

When Peter confronts Alayah, she admits to the cover-up, explaining she did it because she thought it would protect both women from disqualification.

Peter, who feels a connection with Alayah, is then forced to decide on following his heart or his head.  Then, in a dramatic rose ceremony, he sends Alayah packing, along with Alexa and Maurissa.

The Bachelor returns Monday at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/21/2020

Christina Milian welcomes "simply perfect" newborn son with Matt Pokora

Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images(LOS ANGELES) -- Looks like model Ashley Graham wasn't the only celebrity who announced the birth to a baby boy on Monday. Actress Christina Milian is head over heels in love with her little bundle of joy, who came into the world on Martin Luther King Day.

The Love Don't Cost a Thing actress and boyfriend Matt Pokora sweetly announced the arrival of baby Isaiah on Monday with dual Instagram posts.

Wrote Milian against a black and white photo of Isiah's tiny hand wrapped around her finger, "And so we begin. Isaiah 1/20/20. Simply perfect. The world is yours Son. Love, Mom & Dad."

Pokora gushed about his newborn son, his first child, in his native French language that roughly translates to, "Once upon a time there was Isaiah, born on 20/01/2020 ... it's up to you to write the rest ... Welcome my son."  He also included a black and white photo of his child sweetly holding onto his index finger.

Milian's friends rushed to congratulate her on her new bundle of joy.  

"Ahhhhh congratulations!!!!," Gushed pregnant Jenna Dewan, who is expecting a child herself sometime this year. " So happy for you!!!!" 

Gabrielle Union also congratulated, "OMGGGGGG so happy for you mama!!! Congratulations!!!!!" and spammed her with a series of golden heart emojis.

Isiah is the "Dip It Low" singer's second child.  He joins his nine-year-old half-sister Violet Madison, whom Milian shares with ex The-Dream.  

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/21/2020

Hate shoveling snow? Martha Stewart spent almost 3 hours plowing four miles of roads

Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for New York Times(BEDFORD, Connecticut) -- A good chunk of Americans had to shovel a sizable amount of heavy snow over the weekend.  One of those Americans buried under six inches of thick snow was no one other than Martha Stewart.

However, instead of hiring a team of professionals to do the laborious task of shoveling and plowing, the TV personality took it upon herself to clear her property.

"After a beautiful but cold snowstorm my farm was covered with four to six inches of moderately heavy snow," the 78-year-old cheerfully wrote on Instagram Sunday.  

So, how much snow did she have to move?  "Got up early to plow the four miles of [sic] roads on the farm," revealed Stewart alongside a series of videos of her happily bustling around and clearing away the compacted snow like a champ.  "I plowed non stop for two and a half hours and I think I did a great job!"

Luckily, the businesswoman had a little help with her Polaris UTV, in which she gratefully shouts out for allowing her to manicure her trails just the way she likes, which explains why she spent nearly three hours making sure the roads were just right.

"I don't like to damage the defined crown of my carriage roads, nor do I like to disturb the gravel topping," Stewart explains before jumping into the nitty-gritty of her routine, "So I plow leaving an inch or two of snow cover. Looks prettier and I can use the roads for horseback riding as well as cross country skiing."

That said, the next time you rue the day you have to shovel the driveway or porch, just know 78-year-old Martha Stewart is out there somewhere spending a minimum of two and a half hours plowing about four miles of roads.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/21/2020

"Who knew?" Eddie Murphy shares the worst advice he's ever received

ABC/Randy Holmes(LOS ANGELES) -- It's a good thing Eddie Murphy decided to forge his own path early on in his career, because according to the legendary comedian, he received some pretty "bad advice" when he first started out.

In a new feature with W Magazine, Murphy reveals that the worst advice he's ever received was from late comic legend Rodney Dangerfield.

"In the early days, I don't remember getting any good advice. I remember some bad advice I got years ago," Murphy recalls. "I played the Comic Strip in Fort Lauderdale, and I was maybe 17, 18 years old. And Rodney Dangerfield comes in, he bumps everybody. It was like, 'Dangerfield is here. Dangerfield's going up.'"

"I was really full of myself back then," he continues. "So I would say, 'Mr. Dangerfield, after the show, will you watch my set?' And he was like, 'Yeah, yeah, sure kid.' "

Murphy then explains what Dangerfield witnessed.

"Back then, I was really dirty and did edgy, racial stuff," Murphy says. "And so, afterward, Dangerfield sees me and he's like, 'Hey, kid, I don't know where you're gonna go with that, you know? The language, and the race stuff,' and I was crestfallen."

However, according to Murphy, Dangerfield's criticism didn't quite inspire him to switch up his comedy style.

"Cut to two, three years later, I got on Saturday Night Live, and had gotten really successful," he says. "And I was in Vegas in the bathroom at Caesars Palace. I was at the urinal, and Rodney Dangerfield comes to the urinal right next to me. And I look over, and he looks at me and says, 'Hey, who knew?'"

It's safe to say Murphy's still doing pretty well, with a number of film projects and a comedy special lined up.

The issue of W Magazine featuring Murphy hits newsstands on February 4.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/21/2020

Watch now: Mark Wahlberg & Winston Duke team up in 'Spenser Confidential' trailer

Netflix(LOS ANGELES) -- In the '80s, an ABC series called Spenser: For Hire -- based on Robert P. Parker's bestselling detective novels -- was a popular crime drama.  It starred the late Robert Urich as Boston private eye Spenser and Avery Brooks as his friend and enforcer, Hawk. Now, Netflix has reimagined the series as an action comedy called Spenser Confidential, streaming March 6.

The new version stars Mark Wahlberg as Spenser and Black Panther's Winston Duke as Hawk, but the characters and the relationship between the two men are very different.  In this version, Spenser's an ex-cop who's sent to prison after being framed by the bad guys he was investigating. When he gets out, his old boxing coach, Henry, played by Alan Arkin, introduces him to Hawk, a promising MMA fighter played by Duke.  Spenser and Hawk then team up to investigate the murder of two of Spenser's former colleagues.

The movie's inspired by the novel Wonderland by Ace Atkins, who took over writing the Spenser book series after Parker died in 2010.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Music News Group
Posted: 01/20/2020

GlaxoSmithKline halts production of some Excedrin products

littleny/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline has temporarily stopped production of Excedrin, its popular over-the-counter migraine medication.

The company ceased nationwide production and distribution of its Excedrin Extra Strength and Excedrin Migraine products because of "inconsistencies in how we transfer and weigh ingredients," a GSK spokesperson told told ABC Syracuse affiliate WSYR.

GSK confirmed to ABC News it is a nationwide issue, although the company said it is short-term and production is expected to resume shortly. WSYR reported the company said there is not "a definite date as to when supply will resume."

"Patient safety and product quality are our utmost priorities at GSK," a company spokesperson said in a statement obtained by ABC News.

While the company does not believe Excedrin products pose a safety risk to consumers, the spokesperson said, GSK was temporarily discontinuing the medicines as a precautionary measure.

Other GSK pain medicines and generic drugs are still available, but they may be in different dosage, and GSK advises consumers to consult their pharmacists for alternatives, the spokesperson said in their statement.

Some patients say those options don't provide them with the pain relief they need.

"I've been suffering for about 10 years. I've gone to the doctors. I've tried prescription medicines. I had Botox. I've tried medical marijuana and I still end up going back to Excedrin," Ashleigh Eldred, who discovered that her preferred pain medicine wasn't available when she tried to purchase it at a Walgreens in Clay, New York, told WSYR.

Customers looking for Exedrin in Central New York faced empty shelves in some chain stores and pharmacies, including Wegmans, Tops, Walmart and Walgreens, as well as in independent pharmacies, WSYR reported.

"If I have a migraine attack, I'm not sure if I was to not have any on me, what I would do," Eldred said.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/21/2020

Climate change and inequality loom large as the powerful descend on Davos

makasana/iStock(DAVOS, Switzerland) -- The world's political and economic elite are descending on the small Swiss Alps town of Davos this week for the annual World Economic Forum meeting where they hope to set this year's "global, regional and industry agendas."

Approximately 3,000 people will be attending this year -- from President Donald Trump to German Chancellor Angela Merkel to climate change activist Greta Thunberg -- and the theme is Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World.

The convention of the most powerful comes at a time, however, when global income inequality is soaring and a majority of people believe capitalism in its current form is not working.

Here is what to expect from this year's conference:

'Stakeholder capitalism'

The WEF explains that this year's theme is about using "stakeholder capitalism," or a system where the interests of all stakeholders are weighed equally, as a means "to overcome income inequality, societal division and the climate crisis."

"Business has now to fully embrace stakeholder capitalism, which means not only maximizing profits, but use their capabilities and resources in cooperation with governments and civil society to address the key issues of this decade," forum founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab said in a statement.

"They have to actively contribute to a more cohesive and sustainable world," he added.

Issues like climate change and "fairer economies" are at the top of the agenda this year.

The invitation-only guest list has expanded to welcome young activists including 17-year-old Greta Thunberg and others in addition to the usual crowd of the ultra-wealthy.

The schedule is jam-packed with things to watch for. On Tuesday, Trump will be giving a special address shortly after Thunberg participates on a panel about "Averting a Climate Apocalypse." Han Zheng, the vice-premier of the People’s Republic of China, will also speak on Tuesday afternoon.

Another theme of this year's conference will be the role of technology in our society and how it can be used "for good."

Many executives from big tech will be present: Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei will discuss "A Future Shaped by a Technology Arms Race" on Tuesday. Google CEO Sundar Pichai will speak on Wednesday. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg will also reportedly be in attendance this year.

Capitalism 'doing more harm than good'

The gathering of the business elite comes at a time, however, when a majority of people believe that "capitalism in its current form is now doing more harm than good in the world," according to a survey from global communications firm Edelman published Monday.

Despite a strong economy on paper and low unemployment rates, a majority of those surveyed also said they did not believe they would be better off in five years' time.

CEO Richard Edelman called the findings a "trust paradox," saying, "Since we began measuring trust 20 years ago, economic growth has fostered rising trust."
 
"Fears are stifling hope and long-held assumptions about hard work leading to upward mobility are now invalid," he added.

The findings shed light on a series of perceived global threats -- 83% of employees globally said they are worried about job loss "due to automation, a looming recession, lack of training, cheaper foreign competition, immigration and the gig economy." Moreover, 57% of people said they were worried about losing their "respect and dignity."

The 'inequality crisis is spiraling out of control'

This year's conference also comes at a time when the world's billionaires hold more wealth than 4.6 billion people, or 60% of the Earth's population, according to a report on inequality released Monday from the nonprofit group Oxfam.

The report's findings are just "another indication that the inequality crisis is spiraling out of control," according to Paul O’Brien, the vice president of policy and advocacy at Oxfam America.

"The richest are clearly rigging our economy for themselves, starting with America’s billionaire President," O’Brien said. "While the president of the United States is rubbing elbows in Davos with the global elite, his administration is seeking to cut food assistance to nearly a million poor people, while expanding tax loopholes and other benefits for the wealthy and large companies."

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde will be among those speaking this year on the topic of creating “fairer economies," according to the WEF website.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Couple used side hustles to pay off $114K debt

Pineapple Studio/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Anthony and Jhanilka Hartzog paid off a debt of $114,151 in two years.

When the couple realized they were in over their heads with their finances, they set a goal at the start of 2017 to pay off their debt by Jhanilka Hartzog's 30th birthday.

They got to work by first calculating all their expenses and making a realistic budget that accounted for everything.

"There is a restaurant budget. There's our entertainment budget. There's a transportation budget," said Jhanilka Hartzog. "The dog has like $150 a month. He has to have his own budget."

And instead of just reining in their spending, the Hartzogs also put themselves to work to supplement their incomes from their regular, 9-to-5 jobs. Jhanilka Hartzog, 31, is a licensed mental health counselor and Anthony Hartzog, 33, works as a director for a New York-based IT firm.

"We increased our income as much as we can," said Anthony Hartzog, who, along with this wife, took on an extra job at their local gym. "It's like, well, I'm getting a free gym membership at a high-end gym. I'm getting paid to be here."

The couple also turned to apps to take on extra side hustles and bring in extra cash.

They started working for Turo, a peer-to-peer car rental service, and Rover, a dog-sitting company.

"Since I work from home, it was just easy," Jhanilka Hartzog said of the dog-sitting tasks. "And our dog was pretty shy around other dogs, so it made him more comfortable."

The couple also started their own cleaning service to make extra money.

By December 2018, 23 months after they started and the same month as Jhanilka Hartzog's 30th birthday, the couple had paid off their $114,151 debt.

Now that they are debt-free, the Hartzogs were able to purchase a new car and pay it off in one year.

They are also taking advantage of their love for travel, planning trips this year to Greece, Morocco and Brazil.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Tesla calls unintended acceleration complaints 'completely false'

jetcityimage/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Tesla is disputing claims that all three models of its electric vehicles could unexpectedly accelerate without the driver taking action.

The car company issued a statement on Monday afternoon, saying a stock short-seller was behind the claims, which resulted in a National Highway Traffic Safety Administration inquiry over the weekend. Short-sellers are investors who borrow shares in a company's stock to sell it on the market with plans of buying it back at a cheaper price later.

"We investigate every single incident where the driver alleges to us that their vehicle accelerated contrary to their input, and in every case where we had the vehicle's data, we confirmed that the car operated as designed," the company said in a statement Monday. "In other words, the car accelerates if, and only if, the driver told it to do so, and it slows or stops when the driver applies the brake."

The NHTSA said it would review the petition that was filed and decide whether to launch a full investigation. The petition covers about 500,000 Tesla Model 3, Model S and Model X vehicles manufactured between 2013 and 2019. The petitioner, Brian Sparks of Berkeley, California, claims Tesla owners had filed 127 government complaints, covering 110 crashes and 52 injuries.

NHTSA said it would "carefully review the petition and relevant data," according to a statement released Friday. "The Office of Defects Investigation will conduct a technical analysis and decide whether or not to grant or deny the petition. If the petition is granted, a defect investigation will be opened."

Tesla called the petition "completely false" and said it had previously discussed the majority of the complaints alleged in the petition with the NHTSA. In every case it reviewed, the data proved the vehicle functioned properly, according to Tesla.

"Unique to Tesla, we also use the Autopilot sensor suite to help distinguish potential pedal misapplications and cut torque to mitigate or prevent accidents when we’re confident the driver’s input was unintentional," Tesla said. "Each system is independent and records data, so we can examine exactly what happened."

"We are transparent with NHTSA, and routinely review customer complaints of unintended acceleration with them," it added.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

All eyes on potential Trump vs Greta Thunberg showdown at Davos

iStock(NEW YORK) -- Twitter adversaries President Donald Trump and teen climate change activist Greta Thunberg may come face-to-face at the annual World Economic Forum meeting this week, and all eyes are on their potential showdown at Davos.

Trump, 73, is slated to give a special address at the conference of world and business leaders at 11 a.m. local time on Tuesday. Thunberg, 17, will speak shortly after.

While Thunberg has become a symbol of the youth-led movement, calling for urgent action on climate change, the Trump administration has taken steps to show it does not consider it a priority, including withdrawing the U.S. from the Paris Climate Agreement. Trump has previously called climate change a hoax.

The last time the two were in the same room, at the United Nations Climate Action Summit in September, a photo emerged on social media showing them crossing paths. It quickly went viral.

"I think both voices are necessary," he said. "The environment will play a particularly important role during this meeting."

Thunberg made headlines late last month when she said she "wouldn't have wasted my time" speaking to Trump about climate change.

"I don't think I would have said anything because he's obviously not listening to scientists and experts, why would he listen to me?" she told the BBC's Today radio program. "I probably wouldn't have said anything, wouldn't have wasted my time."

The teen added that she thinks Trump may see the growing climate movement among young people as a "threat."

While it is unclear what Trump will say during his special address at Davos Tuesday, Thunberg will speak on a panel about “Averting a Climate Apocalypse.”

She wrote in an op-ed for The Guardian last week, saying she is going to Davos to call on leaders to divest from fossil fuels.

“We demand that at this year’s forum, participants from all companies, banks, institutions and governments immediately halt all investments in fossil fuel exploration and extraction, immediately end all fossil fuel subsidies and immediately and completely divest from fossil fuels,” she wrote.

The president has frequently attacked the teen climate activist on social media, tweeting that it is "so ridiculous" that Thunberg was selected as Time magazine's 2019 person of the year and telling her to "chill."

"Greta must work on her Anger Management problem, then go to a good old fashioned movie with a friend!" the president wrote. "Chill Greta, Chill!"

Thunberg seemed to take it in stride. Shortly after, Thunberg changed her Twitter bio to read: "A teenager working on her anger management problem. Currently chilling and watching a good old fashioned movie with a friend."

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Dana Schaeffer
Posted: 01/20/2020

Climate change and economic inequality loom large as the powerful descend on Davos

astra490/iStock(DAVOS, Switzerland) -- The world's political and economic elite are descending on the small Swiss Alps town of Davos this week for the annual World Economic Forum meeting where they hope to set this year's "global, regional and industry agendas."

Approximately 3,000 people will be attending this year -- from President Donald Trump to German Chancellor Angela Merkel to climate change activist Greta Thunberg -- and the theme is Stakeholders for a Cohesive and Sustainable World.

The convention of the most powerful comes at time, however, when global income inequality is soaring and a majority of people believe capitalism in its current form is not working.

Here is what to expect from this year's conference.

'Stakeholder capitalism'


The WEF explains that this year's theme is about using "stakeholder capitalism," or a system where the interests of all stakeholders are weighed equally, as a means "to overcome income inequality, societal division and the climate crisis."

"Business has now to fully embrace stakeholder capitalism, which means not only maximizing profits, but use their capabilities and resources in cooperation with governments and civil society to address the key issues of this decade," forum founder and executive chairman Klaus Schwab said in a statement.

"They have to actively contribute to a more cohesive and sustainable world," he added.

Issues like climate change and "fairer economies" are at the top of the agenda this year.

The invitation-only guest list has expanded to welcome young activists including 17-year-old Greta Thunberg and others in addition to the usual crowd of the ultra-wealthy.

The schedule is jam-packed with things to watch for. On Tuesday, Trump will be giving a special address shortly after Thunberg participates on a panel about "Averting a Climate Apocalypse." Han Zheng, the vice-premier of the People’s Republic of China, will also speak on Tuesday afternoon.

Another theme of this year's conference will be the role of technology in our society and how it can be used "for good."

Many executives from big tech will be present: Huawei founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei will discuss "A Future Shaped by a Technology Arms Race" on Tuesday. Google CEO Sundar Pichai will speak on Wednesday. Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg will also reportedly be in attendance this year.

Capitalism 'doing more harm than good'


The gathering of the business elite comes at a time, however, when a majority of people believe that "capitalism in its current form is now doing more harm than good in the world," according to a survey from global communications firm Edelman published Monday.

Despite a strong economy on paper and low unemployment rates, a majority of those surveyed also said they did not believe they would be better off in five years time.

CEO Richard Edelman called the findings a "trust paradox," saying, "Since we began measuring trust 20 years ago, economic growth has fostered rising trust."

"Fears are stifling hope and long-held assumptions about hard work leading to upward mobility are now invalid," he added.

The findings shed light on a series of perceived global threats -- 83% of employees globally said they are worried about job loss "due to automation, a looming recession, lack of training, cheaper foreign competition, immigration and the gig economy." Moreover, 57% of people said they were worried about losing their "respect and dignity."

The 'inequality crisis is spiraling out of control'


This year's conference also comes at a time when the world's billionaires hold more wealth than 4.6 billion people, or 60% of the Earth's population, according to a report on inequality released Monday from the nonprofit group Oxfam.

The report's findings are just "another indication that the inequality crisis is spiraling out of control," according to Paul O’Brien, the vice president of policy and advocacy at Oxfam America.

"The richest are clearly rigging our economy for themselves, starting with America’s billionaire President," O’Brien said. "While the president of the United States is rubbing elbows in Davos with the global elite, his administration is seeking to cut food assistance to nearly a million poor people, while expanding tax loopholes and other benefits for the wealthy and large companies."

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchen and European Central Bank President Christine Lagarde will be among those speaking this year on the topic of creating “fairer economies," according to the WEF website.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/20/2020

Snickers teases Super Bowl commercial with Guinness World Record candy bar

Samohin/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Snickers raised its own bar with a whopping world record and a big promise for the brand's Super Bowl commercial.

Mars Wrigley, the company behind the candy bar, created a version of its confection that weighed in over two metric tons and set a new Guinness World Record for the largest chocolate nut bar.

The huge chocolate candy bar was made at the Mars Wrigley plant in Waco, Texas, and weighed in at 4,728 pounds -- the size of 43,000 regular-sized bars combined.

The candy bar was made with over 1,300 pounds of caramel, peanuts and nougat combined and nearly 3,500 pounds of chocolate, according to a press release.

Congrats to @SNICKERS on creating the world's LARGEST chocolate nut bar! Weighing in at a hefty 2,144 k (4,728 lb), it includes 3,500 pounds of chocolate and 1,300 pounds of caramel 😍🍫😛 https://t.co/XGuEWmj7eS

— GuinnessWorldRecords (@GWR) January 16, 2020

The brand's employees around the country will all get a taste of the giant Snickers, and once it's completely consumed, the Snickers bar will "officially be recognized and recorded by Guinness World Records as the largest chocolate nut bar."

The press release hinted at the reason the brand decided to make an enormous bar -- besides your typical quest for greatness.

"What better time than the Super Bowl to satisfy something on the biggest scale yet?" Snickers said in its press release.

Snickers has been tweeting out hints that "maybe the world just needs a SNICKERS" along with the date Feb. 2 -- the same day as the Super Bowl.

We’re back! February 2nd, 2020. pic.twitter.com/ef47QogkaX

— SNICKERS (@SNICKERS) December 18, 2019

"It's a big year for the Snickers brand," Josh Olken, brand director, said in a statement. "We're not only celebrating the 90th anniversary of the brand, but the Super Bowl will also mark ten years since the iconic 'Game' spot launched the award-winning 'You're Not You When You're Hungry' campaign.

That slogan kicked off during the 2010 Super Bowl with a commercial featuring Betty White getting slammed into the mud playing a hard-hitting game of football.

Hope you have a satisfying birthday #BettyWhite! You will always be MVP on our team. pic.twitter.com/b5B8OwvN2e

— SNICKERS (@SNICKERS) January 17, 2020

Snickers was sidelined from the big game for the last two years when Mars marketed both M&M's and Skittles, but according to AdAge, Snickers will be the only Mars Wrigley chocolate product airing during the Chief's vs. 49ers game.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/20/2020

Why Stitch Fix CEO Katrina Lake turned down a multimillion-dollar offer

Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images for The Business of Fashion(NEW YORK) -- Stitch Fix founder and CEO Katrina Lake made history in 2017 when she became the youngest female founder to take a company public at just 34.

Founded in 2011, the online personal styling service became profitable within three years and now serves more than three million clients, generating over $1.5 billion in sales.

"The original thesis was marrying humans and data and analytics to build this personalized shopping experience," Lake told ABC News' Rebecca Jarvis on the "No Limits with Rebecca Jarvis" podcast.

Her vision was to transform the way that people shop while democratizing a personal styling experience.

Users fill out a "Style Profile," which a personal stylist uses to handpick items fitting a customer's tastes, needs and budget. Items are shipped monthly to customers, who have three days to decide which pieces they want to keep. A $20 styling fee is applied as a credit toward any items the customer wants to buy.

"We've sold about $5 billion of clothes, all sight unseen. And that's kind of an amazing thing -- that no one is clicking on something, adding it to their cart and buying ... 100 percent of that is recommended to our clients." Lake said on the podcast.

Equally as crucial to the personal stylists of the company are the more than 100 data scientists developing algorithms to better understand customers. A new feature the company offers is called "Shop Your Looks," which uses machine learning to provide customers with a selection of 30 to 40 items based on things they've decided to purchase.

While Stitch Fix joins a myriad other companies looking to transform online shopping, including Rent the Runway, Instagram and Amazon, Lake said data-driven features like "Shop Your Looks" help differentiate her company.

"Our focus on personalization, our focus on apparel, our focus on recommendations at the core of what we do is what's going to differentiate us," she said.

The success of the company is undeniable. In its financial results for the first quarter of 2020 (which ended Nov. 2, 2019 as per the company's financial results report), Stitch Fix increased active clients by 17% to 3.4 million and net revenue by 21% to $444.8 million from the previous year. When Lake thinks about the worst advice she never took, to sell her company in the first year, this type of growth reaffirms her decision to decline the offer.

"We'd raised less than a million dollars, and we had a tens-of-millions-of-dollars offer of a company that wanted to acquire us, and I mean, it had to give us pause," Lake told Jarvis.

Lake was in her late 20s, living paycheck to paycheck, and the offer would have made her a millionaire only a year into her first company. A lawyer she was working with recommending taking it.

"He's like, 'This is so lucky. This is so lucky.' And I'm like, 'Well, do I think that I'm lucky or do I think that I'm actually good at this? And if I'm actually good at this, then I should actually double down on myself and invest in myself,'" Lake told Jarvis.

She turned it down.

"Ultimately, it actually did end up feeling like an easy decision to make -- a feeling like I believe in this. I believe in myself. I believe in the company, and this is the right thing," Lake continued.

Today, Stitch Fix is valued at more than $2 billion.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

Why SpaceX is blowing up a Falcon 9 rocket for a safety test

Andrei Stanescu/iStock(NEW YORK) -- SpaceX is intentionally blowing up one of its Falcon 9 rockets shortly after it launches Sunday, during what it hopes will be the final unmanned test flight before the private aerospace company can send NASA astronauts to the International Space Station.

"We are purposely failing a launch vehicle to make sure that our abort system on the spacecraft that will be flying for our crews works, and so that’s a very, very different way for us to normally conduct a mission,” Kathy Lueders, the manager of the Commercial Crew Program at NASA said at a news conference Friday. "So, this is a very important test."

 The in-flight abort test, which was initially scheduled for a Saturday morning launch from NASA's Kennedy Space Center in Florida, is meant to try out the spacecraft Crew Dragon's "escape capabilities" or its ability for astronauts to jettison if there were an emergency during launch, according to a statement from NASA.

NASA and SpaceX canceled Saturday's launch due to "poor splashdown and recovery weather" and moved it to 8 a.m. Sunday, with a six-hour launch window.

SpaceX via NASA

Saturday's SpaceX launch is part of NASA's Commercial Crew program.

It comes just under a month after a separate NASA Commercial Crew launch done in coordination with Boeing did not go as planned and did not make it to its destination at the ISS.

As part of Saturday's test, SpaceX will trigger a launch escape of the Crew Dragon spacecraft from the Falcon 9 rocket at just slightly under two minutes after takeoff, to see if the spacecraft can safely separate from the rocket.

 The Falcon 9 rocket will continue on, following a trajectory meant to mimic a journey to the ISS before eventually -- intentionally -- exploding in the air. A SpaceX team will recover the debris following the break up in the air.

"We expect there to be some sort of ignition and probably a fireball of some kind, whether I would call it an explosion that you would see from the ground I don’t know, we’ll have to see what actually happens," Benji Reed, the director of crew mission management at SpaceX said at a news conference Friday. "But I wouldn’t be surprised and that wouldn’t be a bad outcome if that’s what we saw. "

 If this test succeeds, SpaceX could soon send American astronauts to the ISS from American soil for the first time since the U.S. ended NASA's Space Shuttle mission in 2011.

"Critical test launch before flying astronauts is green for Jan 18," SpaceX CEO Elon Musk tweeted a week ahead of the launch.

Musk previously indicated in a tweet that he hopes to send a crew on the Dragon in 2020. NASA's Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley are tapped to be the first SpaceX Commercial Crew astronauts.

 Saturday's launch will "provide valuable data toward NASA certifying SpaceX’s crew transportation system for carrying astronauts to and from the International Space Station," the NASA statement added.

You can watch the launch and explosion live on NASA TV.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Anthony Ali
Posted: 01/18/2020

New software issues could delay return of Boeing's 737 Max

sanfel/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Boeing potentially faces more delays for the return of its 737 Max jets after another software issue surfaced during an audit meeting with regulators last weekend, sources tell ABC News.

The 737 Max has been grounded for almost 10 months after it was connected to two crashes that killed a total of 346 people.

Boeing decided to not just rewrite the software for the MCAS flight control system, which is believed to have contributed to both MAX crashes, but the entire flight computer software.

The new software intends to have the 737 Max's two separate flight computers communicate with each other for the first time. In the past, one of the 737’s flight computers would operate independently and switch to the other during the next flight.

During the audit last weekend, they found that the two flight computers were not talking to each other at start-up.

This is the second time regulators have asked Boeing for additional work to be completed before approving the audit.

The Federal Aviation Administration must complete the software audit before a certification test flight can be scheduled -- a key step in the eventual ungrounding of the troubled jet.

“We are making necessary updates and working with the FAA on submission of this change, and keeping our customers and suppliers informed," Boeing said in a statement to ABC News. "Our highest priority is ensuring the 737 MAX is safe and meets all regulatory requirements before it returns to service."

Boeing was not able to tell ABC News if a fix will take days or weeks, but the company confirmed it will work on fixing the new software problem and other 737 Max related tasks simultaneously.

The 737 Max's return to service has already been pushed back several times, resulting in thousands of cancellations for the airlines.

All three airlines that fly the Max have extended cancellations related to the 737 Max through early June.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.


Author: Anthony Ali
Posted: 01/17/2020

A fee for rideshares to the airport may be unconstitutional, Arizona AG says

Anatoliy Sizov/iStock(PHOENIX) -- A $4 fee for hailing an Uber or Lyft to or from the airport in Phoenix has garnered a firestorm of reaction from residents and ride-share companies, and now Arizona's attorney general says he believes it's likely unconstitutional.

The fee tacked onto any ride to or from the Sky Harbor airport has led Uber and Lyft to threaten to discontinue operating at the international hub, and faced backlash from local politicians.

Moreover, Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich said Thursday he believes the city of Phoenix violated the state's constitution with it, citing an article that prohibits a city from increasing or imposing a new tax on a person or business for providing a service in Arizona.

"The Phoenix City Council is placing its policy preferences above the rights of the people to whom the government must always answer," Brnovich said in a statement.

“We will now take this matter to the Arizona Supreme Court and seek an expedited ruling," he added. "This is the most definitive way to provide clarity on the law, protect Arizona taxpayers, and hold the city of Phoenix accountable."

Phoenix councilman Sal DiCiccio has argued the new fee hurts working and middle-class families that rely on the services.

He called Brnovich's announcement Thursday "fantastic news for everyone who drives for or uses rideshare at the airport" in a statement.

"I believe it is clear that this horrible tax is not only a direct attack on working- and middle-class families in Arizona, but it is also an outrageous violation of our constitution, and I am confident that the Supreme Court will throw out the horrible burden that Phoenix politicians recklessly imposed," he added.

Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego, however, supports the fee, saying that companies must pay their fair share for using city infrastructure.

"The Phoenix approach of ensuring that companies profiting from the airport pay their fair share is smart – and legal," Gallego said in a statement to ABC News. "This fee is no different from the fee every other vendor has paid at our airport since its creation."

In a series of tweets, Annie Degraw, the communications director for the mayor's office, defended the fee, blasting the "mind-boggling amount of misinformation being tossed around regarding Lyft and Uber's decision to possibly cease operations" at the airport.

Degraw said the rideshare companies account for 80% of commercial ground traffic at the airport and "pay nowhere near their fair share to actually use airport infrastructure."

She argued that Uber and Lyft's threats to pull out of the airport are because they "are trying to set an example in Phoenix to scare other airports."

Uber declined ABC News' request for comment Friday. In the past, the company has said they are prepared to end operations at Sky Harbor airport if the fee increase goes into effect.

Lyft did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment Friday. Lyft has also previously said it would stop curbside pickup at the airport if the fees go into effect on Feb. 1.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/17/2020

Apple could be forced to abandon its lightning cable by EU regulators

Wachiwit/iStock(NEW YORK) -- European lawmakers are pushing for a universal cellphone charger, arguing it is more environmentally friendly and more convenient for consumers, a move that could bring an end to Apple's exclusive lightning cable.

Members of the European Parliament are calling for "binding measures for chargers to fit all mobile phones and other portable devices," according to a statement issued on Monday after a debate.

The common charger could be used for "all mobile phones, tablets, e-book readers and other portable devices," the statement added.

The policymakers argued the move will reduce electronic waste "and make consumers' life easier," and that old device chargers generate more than 51,000 metric tons of electronic waste every year.

Apple argued in a public feedback form that the proposal would impede innovation and be disruptive for the more than one billion consumers using Apple devices with a lightning cable.

"Regulations that would drive conformity across the type of connector built into all smartphones freeze innovation rather than encourage it," the company argued. "Such proposals are bad for the environment and unnecessarily disruptive for customers."

"We want to ensure that any new legislation will not result in the shipment of any unnecessary cables or external adaptors with every device, or render obsolete the devices and accessories used by many millions of Europeans and hundreds of millions of Apple customers worldwide. This would result in an unprecedented volume of electronic waste and greatly inconvenience users," Apple added.

The proposition was originally introduced more than than five years ago but lawmakers at the time took the approach of encouraging the industry to develop a common charger without any enforcement.

Parliament members argued this week that the "voluntary agreements between different industry players have not yielded the desired results."

The parliament will next hold a vote on the common charger proposal though a date has not been set.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/17/2020

Report: Browns to hire Bill Callahan as offensive line coach

33ft/iStock(NEW YORK) -- The Cleveland Browns are said to be tapping Bill Callahan as their next offensive line coach.

A source tells ESPN the team plans to hire the 63-year-old, who last served as the interim head coach of the Washington Redskins following the firing of coach Jay Gruden. Prior to replacing Gruden, Callahan served as the Redskins’ offensive line coach, a position he held since 2015.

Callahan’s resume also includes stints as the head coach of the Oakland Raiders from 2002 to 2003 as well as the Nebraska Cornhuskers from 2004 to 2007.

He will join Kevin Stefanski on the sidelines, who earlier this month was hired as Cleveland’s new head coach.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Scoreboard roundup -- 1/20/20

iStock(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Monday's sports events:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
Washington 106, Detroit 100
Toronto 122, Atlanta 117
Philadelphia 117, Brooklyn 111
Milwaukee 111, Chicago 98
New Orleans 126, Memphis 116
New York 106, Cleveland 86
Oklahoma City 112, Houston 107
Orlando 106, Charlotte 83
Miami 118, Sacramento 113 -- OT
Boston 139, L.A. Lakers 107
Denver 107, Minnesota 100
Utah 118, Indiana 88
San Antonio 120, Phoenix 118
Portland 129, Golden State 124 -- OT

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
Colorado 6, Detroit 3
Florida 5, Minnesota 4

TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL
Baylor 61, Oklahoma 57
West Virginia 97, Texas 59

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

NBA player Chandler Parsons faces potentially career-ending injury after car hit by drunk driver, law firm says

iStock(NEW YORK) -- NBA player Chandler Parsons was in a potentially career-ending car accident, reportedly involving a driver who was under the influence, according to the law firm Morgan & Morgan.

Chandler, who is a small forward with the Atlanta Hawks, was reportedly driving home from practice around 2 p.m. on Jan. 15 when his vehicle was struck. Parsons, according to his attorneys, "suffered multiple severe and permanent injuries including a traumatic brain injury, disc herniation and a torn labrum."

Parsons' attorneys, John Morgan and Nick Panagakis, said his injuries could potentially end his nine-year NBA career.

"Chandler is having a difficult time accepting the consequence of the defendant's reckless conduct on the roadway," his lawyers said in a statement to ABC News.

The alleged suspect was not identified by the firm, but it said the driver was arrested and charged with a DUI. The driver who allegedly hit Parsons was unconscious at the wheel when police arrived, according to USA Today, citing an incident report. A 7-Up bottle filled with alcohol was reportedly found in the driver's seat, the outlet reported.

The Hawks, in a statement on the day of the incident, said Parsons was involved in an accident after practice. The team said he was diagnosed with a concussion and whiplash and that he would enter the NBA's concussion protocol. They announced Monday he was out of their next game with "concussion/whiplash/associated disc injury."

The team has not disclosed any further details about his injuries or the crash.

"Chandler was in peak physical condition at the time of the wreck," Parsons' legal team said in a statement. "He is now working with a team of doctors to regain his health, and at this time, his ability to return to play is unclear. Our focus right now is on helping him make a full recovery, while we also work to hold any and all responsible parties fully accountable."

Parsons is on the last year of a four-year, $94 million contract. He was traded from the Memphis Grizzlies to the Hawks prior to the start of the 2019-2020 NBA season.

The forward was selected by the Houston Rockets in the first round of the 2011 NBA Draft. He has also played for the Dallas Mavericks. In college, Parsons was named an NCAA All-American while playing for the Florida Gators.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Dana Schaeffer
Posted: 01/20/2020

Coco Guaff beats Venus Williams in Australian Open first round

Scott Clarke / ESPN Images(MELBOURNE, Australia) -- "I was a bit shocked. I'm sure everyone was a bit shocked."

That was Coco Gauff's reaction to facing  Venus Williams again for the first round at a Grand Slam tournament.

Just as Gauff, 15, bested Williams, 39, at Wimbledon last year, she's done it again at the Australian Open. Gauff beat Williams 7-6 (5), 6-3 on Monday at the start of the first major tennis tournament of the year.

"That was really difficult. She played really well," Guaff said of the match, adding that she was "really nervous."

Gauff said she was "more positive coming into this match," after growing her confidence playing on "big courts."

Other women who played and won in notable matches on Monday were defending champion Naomi Osaka, Serena Williams -- a 23 time major champion, top-ranked Ash Barty and 2018 Australian Open winner Caroline Wozniacki. Wozniacki plans to retire after this Australian Open, according to ESPN.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/20/2020

49ers to face Chiefs in Miami for Super Bowl LIV

33ft/iStock(NEW YORK) -- The stage has been set for Super Bowl LIV.

The championship game, less than two weeks away, will feature the San Francisco 49ers against the Kansas City Chiefs.

Both teams advanced to the big game after winning their conference titles on Sunday. The 49ers took home the NFC Championship title after defeating the Green Bay Packers 37-20, and the Chiefs were crowned the AFC Champions after beating the Tennessee Titans 35-24.

Super Bowl Sunday will kick off in Miami on Feb. 2 at 6:30 p.m.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

Three horses euthanized in three days at Santa Anita Park

oska25/iStock(LOS ANGELES) -- Three horses were euthanized this weekend at Santa Anita Park, the famed Southern California horse racing track that gained notoriety last year for the deaths of dozens of horses.

A 5-year-old gelding named Uncontainable was euthanized after fracturing its front right ankle on Saturday, and a 6-year-old gelding named Harliss was euthanized Friday for the same reason, ABC Los Angeles station KABC-TV reported. Tikkun Olam, a 4-year-old gelding, was euthanized for undisclosed reasons after a training accident Sunday.

A fourth horse, a 3-year-old gelding named Truest Reward, died after suffering an injury during training last month.

A spokesman for the racetrack did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment.

The most recent euthanizations bring the total number of horse deaths at the park to 42 since December 2018.

In a statement prior to Sunday's death, PETA Senior Vice President Kathy Guillermo said, "Two horses dead in two days means horses are being forced to race when they shouldn't be."

"Uncontainable had two very long periods last year when he wasn't raced, which likely indicates injury and the need for special attention by veterinarians," Guillermo said. "If we at PETA can see that by looking at his racing record, surely the state veterinarians can too. The only acceptable fatality rate is zero, and if racing can't be done without horses dying, it shouldn't be done at all."

Santa Anita Park has been under intense scrutiny since the number of horse deaths began to rise last year.

In June, after the death toll had climbed to 29, California Gov. Gavin Newsom called for the park to be shut down after it did not heed the California Horse Racing Board's recommendation to suspend racing.

Santa Anita decided to continue racing because it believed that the reforms enacted earlier in the year were working, a spokesman for The Stronach Group, a company that owns the park, told ABC News in June.

The park announced a series of changes surrounding horse safety last March, including a "zero-tolerance" policy for the use of almost all medication on racing day. The California Horse Racing Board further voted to limit whips on racing day.

Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey announced in April that a task force would investigate whether unlawful conduct or conditions affected the welfare and safety of the horses.

Mike Marten, spokesman for the California Horse Racing Board, said in a statement to ABC News Sunday that the board "is committed to reducing the number of racing and training fatalities."

"We already have introduced many safety measures and still others are going through the regulatory process," Marten said.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/20/2020

Scoreboard roundup -- 1/19/20

iStock(NEW YORK) -- Here are the scores from Sunday's sports events:

NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
San Antonio 107, Miami 102
Indiana 115, Denver 107

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
Pittsburgh 4, Boston 3
Carolina 2, NY Islanders 1 -- SO
Chicago 5, Winnipeg 2
Columbus 2, NY Rangers 1

NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE PLAYOFFS
Kansas City 35, Tennessee 24
San Francisco 37, Green Bay 20

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

New Orleans police toss the arrest warrant for Odell Beckham Jr.

Chris Graythen/Getty Images(NEW ORLEANS) --  A New Orleans security officer who filed a complaint against Cleveland Brown's wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. for allegedly slapping him on the buttocks has decided not to pursue the charges.

The officer, who works at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome, was seen in a viral video with Beckham, who appears to slap him on his behind in a stadium locker room Monday night.

The officer filed a complaint with the New Orleans Police Department on Thursday and an arrest warrant was obtained for a "simple battery" charge.

At some point, the officer had a change of heart, telling police on Saturday he didn't want to pursue the charges, a law enforcement source confirmed to ABC News. Officials then rescinded the arrest warrant.

"Absent a complaining witness, this is not a case our office intends to pursue," said Ken Daley, a spokesman for Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro.

The allegations stemmed from the aftermath of the College Football Playoff National Championship in which Beckham's alma mater, Louisiana State, was celebrating after defeating Clemson 42-25.

Beckham was seen in a video apparently slapping the officer's behind, at which point he turned around and looked at Beckham, who continued joking around with LSU players and officials.

The "simple battery" charge would have been a misdemeanor.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/19/2020

Scoreboard roundup -- 1/17/20

iStock(NEW YORK) --  Here are the scores from Friday's games:

 

 NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION
 Final  Philadelphia  100  Chicago        89
 Final  Indiana       116  Minnesota      114
 Final  Toronto       140  Washington     111
 Final  Memphis       113  Cleveland      109
 Final  Miami         115  Oklahoma City  108
 Final  Atlanta       121  San Antonio    120
 Final  Dallas        120  Portland       112
   ------
  NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE
  Final OT  Anaheim      2  Carolina   1
  Final OT  Pittsburgh   2  Detroit    1
  Final  Tampa Bay    7  Winnipeg   1
   ------
  TOP-25 COLLEGE BASKETBALL
  (13)Dayton        78  Saint Louis   76
  (15)Michigan St.  67  Wisconsin     55
  Iowa              90  (19)Michigan  83

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Leighton Schneider
Posted: 01/18/2020

San Francisco Giants hire 1st female coach in MLB history

33ft/iStock(SAN FRANCISCO) -- The San Francisco Giants announced that Alyssa Nakken will be an assistant on the coaching staff, officially making her the first female coach in Major League Baseball history.

Nakken, a four-time Academic All American softball player for Sacramento State, joined the Giants in 2014 as an intern and worked on a variety of projects, according to a Giants press release.

Last month, she was nominated by her peers and co-awarded the 2019 Sprinkles of Love Award, a Giants honor, for her ethics, professionalism and humanitarianism.

Referring to Nakken and Mark Hallberg, who was also added to the coaching staff as an assistant, Giants manager Gabe Kapler said in a statement, "Alyssa and Mark are highly respected members of the organization and I'm delighted that they will now focus their talents on helping to build a winning culture in the clubhouse."

The team now has a total of 13 coaches.

Before her promotion, Nakken was responsible for leading a number of the team's health and wellness events, including the Giant Race Series. She currently chairs the Giants' first Employee Resource Group, aimed at creating a company culture that encourages diversity and equity.

"In every organization, environment affects performance, and baseball clubhouses are no different. That's why in addition to assisting the rest of the coaching staff on the field, Mark and Alyssa will focus on fostering a clubhouse culture that promotes high performance through, among other attributes, a deep sense of collaboration and team," said Kapler.

Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.

Author: Anthony Ali
Posted: 01/17/2020

How 'two kind strangers' on TikTok helped a user detect, avoid skin cancer

Anatoliy Sizov/iStock(NEW YORK) -- TikTok has millions of active users who show off dance moves, lip-sync routines and more but the video-sharing social network may have also helped save one young man's life.

When Alex Griswold shared a video on T...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Ozzy Osbourne opens up about Parkinson's diagnosis

ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Ozzy Osbourne is known as "the Prince of Darkness" and for his crazy antics on and off stage, but the singer and entertainment personality is opening up about something more serious.

In an exclusive interview with Robin Rober...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Mom does 5,332 burpees in 12 hours to help daughter with rare birth defect

fizkes/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Gena Laielli, a 37-year-old mom of two, completed 5,332 burpees in 12 straight hours.

The number -- a staggering feat for anyone who has tried to do one burpee -- is poised to break a world record.

The world record will b...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/21/2020

Human-to-human transmission of new coronavirus reported in China

nopparit/iStock(NEW YORK) -- The new coronavirus that has infected more than 200 people in China has been transmitted between humans, according to Chinese health authorities.

Zhong Nanshan, who heads up China's National Health Commission, told Xinh...

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/20/2020

Woman goes from weighing 350 pounds to four-time marathoner

Liz Rock(NEW YORK) -- Liz Rock started her transformation journey four years ago weighing 350 pounds.

The 29-year-old Boston resident is now 150 pounds thinner, a four-time marathoner and a fitness instructor.

"At 350 pounds there were a lot of thi...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

2-year-old missing half a heart gets surprise 'snow day' after missing family trip

Sandee Walker(NEW YORK) -- A 2-year-old girl who was too sick to attend her family's winter vacation just got a surprise "snow day" from her neighborhood's first responders.

Quinn Walker was born in 2017 missing the left side of her heart. She's h...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/20/2020

3 US airports will screen passengers from Chinese city for new virus

anyaberkut/iStock(NEW YORK) -- Three airports in the United States will screen passengers arriving from Wuhan, China, the epicenter of an outbreak of a new coronavirus that's in the same family as SARS, MERS and the common cold, health officials s...

Author: Anthony Ali
Posted: 01/17/2020

Flu shot isn't an exact match, but you should still get it

Pornpak Khunatorn/iStock(NEW YORK) -- This year's flu shot isn't an exact match for the flu strain that's been circulating most widely, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't get it, health experts say.

"The influenza vaccine protects against various...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/17/2020

Risque condom packaging leads to HIV campaign suspension

CatLane/iStock(SALT LAKE CITY) -- An HIV campaign in Utah was suspended over raunchy condom packaging it featured, according to the state's health department.

Condom wrappers had taglines that Gov. Gary Herbert deemed inappropriate, prompting him ...

Author: JTP
Posted: 01/17/2020

Binge drinking is on the rise: What to know about the risks

Peopleimages/iStock(ATLANTA) -- The number of drinks Americans are consuming per bingeing episode has increased dramatically, according to a new study.

The annual number of binge drinks among adults who reported binge drinking jumped on average fro...

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/17/2020

Already forgot your New Year's resolutions? Here are four tips to reset 2020

HAKINMHAN/iStock(NEW YORK) -- A few weeks into January can be a time New Year's resolutions starts to die.

Jan. 17 has even become known as "Ditch New Year's Resolutions Day" because it's such a common time for resolutions to slowly fade away.

If yo...

Author: CJC
Posted: 01/17/2020

Japan reports latest case of SARS-family virus that's sickened dozens in China

smolaw11/iStock(TOKYO) -- Japan on Thursday reported its first case of a new coronavirus, which has infected 41 people in China, sparking concern about the virus's potential to spread during Chinese New Year next week, when millions are expected t...

Author: Anthony Ali
Posted: 01/16/2020
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