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Stress blamed for student tics at New York school

BUFFALO (Reuters) – State health officials have determined stress likely caused a dozen female high school students to suddenly experience tics and other neurological symptoms associated with Tourette Syndrome, they said on Friday. The Le Roy Central School District, about 50 miles east of Buffalo, scrambled to conduct environmental testing…

New York City in court over homeless shelter policy

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s administration went to court on Friday to defend its controversial new application process at homeless shelters, arguing no rules were broken when the policy was adopted without public scrutiny. The city’s Department of Homeless Services in November tried to reduce the number of…

U.S. appeals court says sex offenders have right to libraries

DENVER (Reuters) – A federal appeals court ruled on Friday that a policy barring registered sex offenders from public libraries in Albuquerque, New Mexico, was unconstitutional, a decision that could have reverberations across the nation. “The First Amendment includes a fundamental right to receive information,” a three-judge panel of the…

Congress reaches deal to fund FAA

Republican and Democratic leaders in the US Congress reached a deal for the long-term funding of the Federal Aviation Administration, Senate majority leader Harry Reid said in a statement. “I am pleased that we were able to resolve the major obstacles to an agreement in a manner that protects American…

Gingrich eyes upset in key South Carolina vote

South Carolina voters head to the polls in their pivotal Republican presidential primary on Saturday, as surging Newt Gingrich eyed an upset win that could turn the race upside-down. If the former House speaker defeats longtime frontrunner Mitt Romney, it could rekindle doubts about whether the more moderate former Massachusetts…

Congress may have power to approve Keystone pipeline on its own

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The Congress has the constitutional right to legislate permits for cross-border oil pipelines like TransCanada’s Keystone XL, according to a new legal analysis released late on Friday. The study by the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service could give a boost to Republicans drafting legislation to overturn a decision…

Romney trying hard to lower expectations in South Carolina

GILBERT, South Carolina (Reuters) – With the crucial Republican presidential primary in South Carolina just hours away, front-runner Mitt Romney on Friday lowered expectations for how well he will do and acknowledged he is in a neck-and-neck race with Newt Gingrich. “Speaker Gingrich is from a neighboring state, well-known, popular…

CIA collaboration with New York Police Department was never legally approved

The top lawyer at the CIA never approved sending one of its officers to help the New York Police Department create a domestic spying program, raising the possibility that the agency may have violated a ban on domestic spying. Last August, the Associated Press reported that the CIA had violated…

Official in botched ‘Fast and Furious’ gun program refuses to testify

WASHINGTON — A US Justice Department employee considered a key figure in a botched US program to track guns into Mexico has refused to testify to Congress, claiming a constitutional right. Patrick Cunningham, head of the criminal division of the Arizona state Attorney General’s office, said he would invoke his…

Dashcam catches cop beating 66-year-old man suffering from dementia

Technicians in Florida have recovered dashcam video of a Melbourne police officer beating a 66-year-old man who suffers from dementia even though the officer deliberately tried to disable the recording. An attorney for beating victim Albert Flowers told Florida Today that his client was prepared to sue the city of…

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