CHICAGO (AP) - In a private ceremony attended by a handful of lawmakers, Gov. Pat Quinn signed landmark legislation Thursday to reform Illinois' massively-underfunded pension system, though labor unions immediately threatened a lawsuit challenging the new law.
From California to Ohio, a big chunk of the U.S. is getting a blast of wintry weather. Frigid temperatures are following a storm that's bringing snow and ice to many areas. The conditions are making travel difficult, raising concerns about citrus crops and prompting the cancellation of fights, holiday festivities and football games. Even one outdoor ice rink in cold-accustomed South Dakota is shutting down.
BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - With the wind chill falling to almost minus 40, Steve Hendershot's mind was elsewhere Thursday as he and his crew of roustabouts worked an oil rig in North Dakota's booming oil patch.
Fast-food NEW YORK (AP) - Fast-food workers and labor organizers marched, waved signs and chanted in cities across the country on Thursday in a push for higher wages.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. economy is growing faster, corporate profits are rising and companies are laying off the fewest workers in six years.
VISALIA (AP) - Officials say temperatures in the citrus-rich San Joaquin Valley dropped to the low 20s overnight, but it was too early to tell whether there was any crop damage.
NEW YORK (AP) - William Bratton, whose tenure as New York City police commissioner in the 1990s was marked by a steep decline in crime and clashes with then-Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, has been chosen to lead the nation's largest police force again.
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) - The passage of a landmark bill to address Illinois' worst-in-the-nation pension crisis means the yearslong fight over how to address the massive shortfall now likely shifts to the courts, where its fate - and much-needed relief for the financially troubled state - remains highly uncertain.
ELOY, Ariz. (AP) - Skydivers from around the world returned to the air Wednesday at a popular Arizona skydiving location that was the site of a deadly mishap involving two parachutists a day earlier.
CHICAGO (AP) - New research on face transplants may help guide future operations for accident victims needing this kind of drastic surgery.
YONKERS, N.Y. (AP) - An engineer whose speeding commuter train ran off the rails along a curve, killing four people, experienced a hypnotic-like "daze" and nodded at the controls before he suddenly realized something was wrong and hit the brakes, a lawyer said.
DETROIT (AP) - A judge has given Detroit the green light to cut pensions as a way out of the largest municipal bankruptcy in U.S. history, a decision that puts the case in the laps of thousands of retirees who had hoped that the Michigan Constitution would protect them from getting smaller checks in their golden years.
NEW YORK (AP) - Investigators looking into a deadly train derailment said Tuesday that no problems had been found with the train's brake system or track signals along its route and that its engineer was being questioned again.
BIRD STEALS CAMERA IN AUSTRALIA, RECORDS JOURNEY: SYDNEY (AP) - A brazen bird snatched a video camera that was recording crocodiles in northwest Australia and captured fascinating footage of its 110-kilometer (70-mile) journey across the country's remote landscape. Wildlife rangers in Western Australia's Kimberly region released video on Monday that reveals the sea eagle's caper. The bird's flapping wings can be seen as it grabs the device and takes off, and the eagle later poses for a selfie, poking its face into the camera lens. Rangers set up the motion-sensor camera along the Margaret River in May ...
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (AP) - An Alabama man who went into surgery for what was supposed to be a routine circumcision filed a lawsuit contending doctors mistakenly amputated his penis, but a hospital said Thursday the claims were without merit.
ALIQUIPPA, Pa. (AP) - The father of two toddlers who died after a dresser fell on them is facing involuntary manslaughter charges because he heard a crash and didn't immediately check on his daughters, a prosecutor said Thursday.
MIAMI (AP) - Federal officials have capped the amount of money scofflaws will be forced to pay if they don't buy insurance this year at $2,448 per person and $12,240 for a family of five.
SEATTLE (AP) - Shares of Amazon.com Inc. fell Thursday after the e-commerce retailer reported a deeper-than-expected second quarter loss as expenses outpaced a surge in revenue.
OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Union Pacific Corp. said Thursday that its quarterly profit climbed 17 percent as the railroad hauled 8 percent more freight and raised shipping rates.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The risk of losing your job is getting smaller and smaller.
NEW YORK (AP) - Starbucks said Thursday its revamped breakfast sandwiches and other food offerings helped boost sales at its U.S. cafes.
DETROIT (AP) - Recall expenses chopped $1.5 billion from General Motors' bottom line in the second quarter, as it added up the costs of repairs for nearly 30 million cars and set aside funds to compensate victims of small-car crashes.
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Staking out a populist stand ahead of the midterm elections, President Barack Obama on Thursday demanded "economic patriotism" from U.S. corporations that use legal means to avoid U.S. taxes through overseas mergers.
WEST SACRAMENTO (AP) - California's attorney general said Thursday she is helping secure lawyers to represent minors from Central America during immigration hearings.
SACRAMENTO (AP) - A state appeals court on Thursday upheld a proposed route for California's high-speed rail line connecting the San Francisco Bay Area to the Central Valley.
LOS BANOS (AP) - A Central California man has been sentenced to 14 years and eight months in prison following his conviction on charges that he drugged and raped two men.
COTATI (AP) - A rare redwood tree in a small Northern California city will be replanted instead of being sawed down to make way for planned railway tracks.