canada getting rid of its penny
Canada has announced it is scrapping the penny. Finance Minister Jim Flaherty announced in the federal budget Thursday that the Royal Canadian Mint will strike the last of the 1-cent coins this fall. The budget says the cost of minting a penny has risen to 1.6 cents or $11 million a year. Pennies will still be legal tender, but as they slowly vanish from circulation, prices will be rounded up or down.
Japan admits nuke plant poses danger
Damage to the core of at least one of the meltdown-stricken reactors at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant could be far worse than thought, raising fresh concerns over the plant's stability and complicating the cleanup, a recent internal investigation shows. The results, released this week by the plant operator, also cast doubt on the Japanese government's declaration three months ago that the site is under control.
Effort to end oil tax breaks is blocked
The Senate blocked an effort to end billions of dollars in tax breaks for the oil industry, brushing aside President Barack Obama's argument that the five big oil companies are doing "just fine" while consumers are struggling with high gas prices. The measure to kill the industry tax preferences failed on a 51-47 procedural vote Thursday.
Guilty plea entered in mine blast case
The former superintendent of a mine where an explosion killed 29 workers pleaded guilty Thursday to a federal fraud charge. Gary May, the highest-ranking Massey Energy official charged in the 2010 blast at the Upper Big Branch mine, faces up to five years in prison when sentenced Aug. 9. Prosecutors said he manipulated the mine ventilation system during inspections and disabled a methane monitor on a cutting machine.
Judge delays start of Sandusky trial
The judge overseeing former Penn State assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky's child sexual abuse case on Thursday delayed the start of the trial by three weeks to early June, and prosecutors filed a lengthy court document that said the case should not be dismissed. Judge John Cleland said the extra time was needed "to accommodate various logistical contingencies that have arisen." The Attorney General's Office supported the delay.
Washington: New satellite imagery appears to show preparations beginning for a long-range rocket launch in North Korea despite international objections.
Michigan: After twice finding out lottery winners used food stamps after collecting the jackpot, Michigan lawmakers passed legislation Thursday to keep it from happening again.