Where is the Money Going?

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Debt Collectors’ Dream: Nebraska makes it Easy to Go after Poor for Unpaid Medical Debts

Suing someone in Nebraska is cheaper and easier. The cost to file a lawsuit in that state is $45. About 79,000 debt collection lawsuits were filed in Nebraska courts in 2013 alone. Suing became an irresistible bargain for debt collectors. It’s a deal collectors have fought to keep, opposing even the slightest increase. For debtors, unaffordable debts turn into unaffordable garnishments, destroying already tight budgets and sending them into a loop.   read more

Loophole in Enforcement of “Living Wage” Laws: State Governments Kept in Dark on Compliance

Evidence of compliance is plain to see on most pay stubs, but state and federal laws don't require employers to routinely provide this crucial detail to the government. Without this data, wage enforcers who are empowered to investigate generally wait until a worker complains. And many workers — especially those in precarious situations — fear they'll be fired if they speak up. "It's pretty shocking how common the violations are," said Donna Levitt, a labor enforcement director in San Francisco.   read more

Health Law Seen as Reducing Medical Debt of Low-Income Americans

One in five Americans still struggle to pay a medical bill, even after the health law. But studies show the number has declined as insurance coverage has expanded. Also, the lower debt burden for the newly insured indirectly helps others. Insurance coverage means more bills are paid to doctors and hospitals — but also to banks, utilities and landlords. That receives less attention than the health law’s more obvious effects on access to health care. But they're an important effect of the law.   read more

In Separate Cases, CIA and Supreme Court Approve Paths for Benefit Payments to Terror Victims’ Families

The CIA has secured funds to begin paying out death benefits of up to $400,000 each to families like the Dohertys who are survivors of federal employees or contractors killed in acts of terrorism overseas. The benefits will be available to families of victims dating back as far as 1983, when suicide bombers killed dozens of people at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut. The agency has not released the specific number of families who qualify, but it's believed to be several dozen.   read more

“Made in USA” Label No Match for Lower Sticker Price for Most Americans

Presidential candidates like Trump and Sanders may vow to bring back millions of American jobs lost to foreign competitors. But a mere 9% say they only buy American. Asked about a real world example of choosing between $50 pants made in another country or an $85 pair made in the U.S., 67% say they'd buy the cheaper pair. Only 30% would pony up for the more expensive American-made one. People in higher earning households earning more than $100,000 a year would also go for the lower priced item.   read more

New Treasury Dept. Rules Torpedo Pfizer-Allergan Tax-Avoidance Merger

The rules wiped out Pfizer's financial incentives and rationale for the merger. It was Pfizer's third, and most expensive, failed attempt at an inversion, leaving analysts to speculate Pfizer will drop the strategy for good. The merger would have moved Pfizer's address on paper to Ireland, where it would have paid hundreds of millions of dollars less in annual U.S. corporate taxes. Pfizer had $23.3 billion available at the end of 2015, when it posted a profit of $9.1 billion.   read more

Fraudulent Cancer Charities Agree to Close Shop in Settlement with FTC

All 50 states had joined the FTC in a complaint against four cancer charities, saying they wasted and misused $187 million in charitable contributions. Each of the charities claimed to directly support people with cancer - saying donation dollars bought patients medications, transportation to doctors and hospice care. The government said none of the organizations provided any such services. Instead, they went to "fund someone's lavish lifestyle."   read more

After 7 Years and $86 Million, DEA’s Spy Plane for Afghanistan Never Used on Afghan Missions

The plan to buy and modify the plane ended up costing four times as much as the agency's original $22 million estimate, in part because the DEA bought a model that didn't meet its technical needs and failed to keep the records necessary to guarantee a DOD subcontractor performed the right changes to the aircraft. The report called the program "an ineffective and wasteful use of government resources." A hangar in Afghanistan, specifically built to house the aircraft, has stood empty since 2013.   read more

Indian Tribe Claims V.A. Withholds Lawful Reimbursements for Veterans Care

In a complaint filed in federal court on Tuesday, the Gila River Indian Community claims the department owes them for health care provided to veterans going back to March 2010. Under Obama's health care law, the VA must reimburse Indian tribes for health care services to veterans who seek care from tribal clinics or hospitals instead of a VA facility. Gila officials say they have tried for years to negotiate with the VA and even sent a delegation to meet with officials in Washington, D.C.   read more

Does Banks’ Withdrawal from Coal Financing Mean Industry’s End is near?

JPMorgan Chase announced two weeks ago that it would no longer finance new coal-fired power plants. The retreat follows similar announcements by Bank of America, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley that they are backing away from coal. Wall Street’s broad retreat is an ominous sign for the industry. “There are always going to be periods of boom and bust,” said Chiza Vitta, a metals and mining analyst. “But what is happening in coal is a downward shift that is permanent.”   read more

Leading Candidates and 83% of Americans want Lower Prices for Medicare Drugs…but it’s not going to Happen

Most Americans support it. All other developed countries already do it. And the two leading presidential candidates say: government should lower drug prices. But experts say the chances for government action in the near-term are close to nil. The reasons are familiar: political gridlock, pharmaceutical industry influence and the structure of the U.S. health system itself. "There's not much they can do, that's the sad truth," says Ira Loss. "They can't do much so they're not gonna do much."   read more

Gender Pay Gap Outlives Reasons Thought to Have Caused It

Even when women join men in the same fields, the pay gap remains. Men and women are paid differently, not just when they do different jobs but also when they do the same work. Research has found that a pay gap persists within occupations. Female physicians earn 71% of what male physicians earn, and lawyers earn 82%. One union said its female members working full time at Dow Jones publications made 87 cents for every dollar earned by their full-time male colleagues.   read more

After 22 Years, Federal Government Finally Meets its Goal of Awarding 5% of Government Contracts to Women

Small companies captured 26% of the government’s contracting dollars last year, representing $90.7 billion, the SBA announced Wednesday. About $17.8 billion of that total went to businesses owned by women during the fiscal year. A Commerce Department analysis recently showing that businesses owned by women are 21% less likely to win government contracts than otherwise similar companies. Firms owned by women tend to be younger and smaller than other businesses, but the disparity remains.   read more

FEC Complaint Filed Over Huge Rubio Super-PAC Donation from Secret Donor

An election watchdog filed a complaint Friday with the FEC over a $500,000 donation to a super PAC aiding Marco Rubio from a mystery firm headed by a New York investor. Efforts by good government groups to stem the use of shadowy corporate entities to channel large political donations have been long stymied by the FEC's internal political paralysis. The complaint seeks an investigation into IGX LLC for masking the donation.   read more

Energy Department Considers Burying Nuclear Waste in 3-Mile-Deep Holes

The federal government plans to spend $80 million assessing whether its hottest nuclear waste can be stored in 3-mile-deep holes, a project that could provide an alternative strategy to a Nevada repository plan that was halted in 2010. The five-year borehole project was tentatively slated to start later this year on state-owned land in rural North Dakota, but it has already been met with opposition from state and local leaders.   read more

Navy Might Put Electric Gun on New Destroyer

Development of a futuristic weapon depicted in video games and science fiction is going well enough that a Navy admiral wants to skip an at-sea prototype in favor of installing an operational unit aboard a destroyer planned to go into service in 2018. The Navy has been testing an electromagnetic railgun and could have an operational unit ready to go on one of the new Zumwalt-class destroyers under construction at Bath Iron Works.   read more
1 to 16 of about 1738 News
1 2 3 ... 109 Next

Where is the Money Going?

1 to 16 of about 1738 News
1 2 3 ... 109 Next

Debt Collectors’ Dream: Nebraska makes it Easy to Go after Poor for Unpaid Medical Debts

Suing someone in Nebraska is cheaper and easier. The cost to file a lawsuit in that state is $45. About 79,000 debt collection lawsuits were filed in Nebraska courts in 2013 alone. Suing became an irresistible bargain for debt collectors. It’s a deal collectors have fought to keep, opposing even the slightest increase. For debtors, unaffordable debts turn into unaffordable garnishments, destroying already tight budgets and sending them into a loop.   read more

Loophole in Enforcement of “Living Wage” Laws: State Governments Kept in Dark on Compliance

Evidence of compliance is plain to see on most pay stubs, but state and federal laws don't require employers to routinely provide this crucial detail to the government. Without this data, wage enforcers who are empowered to investigate generally wait until a worker complains. And many workers — especially those in precarious situations — fear they'll be fired if they speak up. "It's pretty shocking how common the violations are," said Donna Levitt, a labor enforcement director in San Francisco.   read more

Health Law Seen as Reducing Medical Debt of Low-Income Americans

One in five Americans still struggle to pay a medical bill, even after the health law. But studies show the number has declined as insurance coverage has expanded. Also, the lower debt burden for the newly insured indirectly helps others. Insurance coverage means more bills are paid to doctors and hospitals — but also to banks, utilities and landlords. That receives less attention than the health law’s more obvious effects on access to health care. But they're an important effect of the law.   read more

In Separate Cases, CIA and Supreme Court Approve Paths for Benefit Payments to Terror Victims’ Families

The CIA has secured funds to begin paying out death benefits of up to $400,000 each to families like the Dohertys who are survivors of federal employees or contractors killed in acts of terrorism overseas. The benefits will be available to families of victims dating back as far as 1983, when suicide bombers killed dozens of people at the U.S. Embassy in Beirut. The agency has not released the specific number of families who qualify, but it's believed to be several dozen.   read more

“Made in USA” Label No Match for Lower Sticker Price for Most Americans

Presidential candidates like Trump and Sanders may vow to bring back millions of American jobs lost to foreign competitors. But a mere 9% say they only buy American. Asked about a real world example of choosing between $50 pants made in another country or an $85 pair made in the U.S., 67% say they'd buy the cheaper pair. Only 30% would pony up for the more expensive American-made one. People in higher earning households earning more than $100,000 a year would also go for the lower priced item.   read more

New Treasury Dept. Rules Torpedo Pfizer-Allergan Tax-Avoidance Merger

The rules wiped out Pfizer's financial incentives and rationale for the merger. It was Pfizer's third, and most expensive, failed attempt at an inversion, leaving analysts to speculate Pfizer will drop the strategy for good. The merger would have moved Pfizer's address on paper to Ireland, where it would have paid hundreds of millions of dollars less in annual U.S. corporate taxes. Pfizer had $23.3 billion available at the end of 2015, when it posted a profit of $9.1 billion.   read more

Fraudulent Cancer Charities Agree to Close Shop in Settlement with FTC

All 50 states had joined the FTC in a complaint against four cancer charities, saying they wasted and misused $187 million in charitable contributions. Each of the charities claimed to directly support people with cancer - saying donation dollars bought patients medications, transportation to doctors and hospice care. The government said none of the organizations provided any such services. Instead, they went to "fund someone's lavish lifestyle."   read more

After 7 Years and $86 Million, DEA’s Spy Plane for Afghanistan Never Used on Afghan Missions

The plan to buy and modify the plane ended up costing four times as much as the agency's original $22 million estimate, in part because the DEA bought a model that didn't meet its technical needs and failed to keep the records necessary to guarantee a DOD subcontractor performed the right changes to the aircraft. The report called the program "an ineffective and wasteful use of government resources." A hangar in Afghanistan, specifically built to house the aircraft, has stood empty since 2013.   read more

Indian Tribe Claims V.A. Withholds Lawful Reimbursements for Veterans Care

In a complaint filed in federal court on Tuesday, the Gila River Indian Community claims the department owes them for health care provided to veterans going back to March 2010. Under Obama's health care law, the VA must reimburse Indian tribes for health care services to veterans who seek care from tribal clinics or hospitals instead of a VA facility. Gila officials say they have tried for years to negotiate with the VA and even sent a delegation to meet with officials in Washington, D.C.   read more

Does Banks’ Withdrawal from Coal Financing Mean Industry’s End is near?

JPMorgan Chase announced two weeks ago that it would no longer finance new coal-fired power plants. The retreat follows similar announcements by Bank of America, Citigroup and Morgan Stanley that they are backing away from coal. Wall Street’s broad retreat is an ominous sign for the industry. “There are always going to be periods of boom and bust,” said Chiza Vitta, a metals and mining analyst. “But what is happening in coal is a downward shift that is permanent.”   read more

Leading Candidates and 83% of Americans want Lower Prices for Medicare Drugs…but it’s not going to Happen

Most Americans support it. All other developed countries already do it. And the two leading presidential candidates say: government should lower drug prices. But experts say the chances for government action in the near-term are close to nil. The reasons are familiar: political gridlock, pharmaceutical industry influence and the structure of the U.S. health system itself. "There's not much they can do, that's the sad truth," says Ira Loss. "They can't do much so they're not gonna do much."   read more

Gender Pay Gap Outlives Reasons Thought to Have Caused It

Even when women join men in the same fields, the pay gap remains. Men and women are paid differently, not just when they do different jobs but also when they do the same work. Research has found that a pay gap persists within occupations. Female physicians earn 71% of what male physicians earn, and lawyers earn 82%. One union said its female members working full time at Dow Jones publications made 87 cents for every dollar earned by their full-time male colleagues.   read more

After 22 Years, Federal Government Finally Meets its Goal of Awarding 5% of Government Contracts to Women

Small companies captured 26% of the government’s contracting dollars last year, representing $90.7 billion, the SBA announced Wednesday. About $17.8 billion of that total went to businesses owned by women during the fiscal year. A Commerce Department analysis recently showing that businesses owned by women are 21% less likely to win government contracts than otherwise similar companies. Firms owned by women tend to be younger and smaller than other businesses, but the disparity remains.   read more

FEC Complaint Filed Over Huge Rubio Super-PAC Donation from Secret Donor

An election watchdog filed a complaint Friday with the FEC over a $500,000 donation to a super PAC aiding Marco Rubio from a mystery firm headed by a New York investor. Efforts by good government groups to stem the use of shadowy corporate entities to channel large political donations have been long stymied by the FEC's internal political paralysis. The complaint seeks an investigation into IGX LLC for masking the donation.   read more

Energy Department Considers Burying Nuclear Waste in 3-Mile-Deep Holes

The federal government plans to spend $80 million assessing whether its hottest nuclear waste can be stored in 3-mile-deep holes, a project that could provide an alternative strategy to a Nevada repository plan that was halted in 2010. The five-year borehole project was tentatively slated to start later this year on state-owned land in rural North Dakota, but it has already been met with opposition from state and local leaders.   read more

Navy Might Put Electric Gun on New Destroyer

Development of a futuristic weapon depicted in video games and science fiction is going well enough that a Navy admiral wants to skip an at-sea prototype in favor of installing an operational unit aboard a destroyer planned to go into service in 2018. The Navy has been testing an electromagnetic railgun and could have an operational unit ready to go on one of the new Zumwalt-class destroyers under construction at Bath Iron Works.   read more
1 to 16 of about 1738 News
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