The U.S. budget deficit stood at $1.1 trillion through July, the Treasury Department says, making 2011 the third consecutive year that the deficit has hit at least $1 trillion. The federal government's budget year begins in October, leaving two more months in which the deficit might rise.
Looking at the numbers for July alone, the U.S. budget shortfall was $129 billion — a drop in spending from July 2010, according to Bloomberg.
Here's a piece of biology news that escaped us, last month, but was brought to our attention by a story in the BBC today: Biologist have found the reason house mice in Spain and Germany have grown immune to warfarin, a commonly used poison.
The idea of a poison-resistant mouse is a bit unsettling, but how it came to be is fascinating tale of cross-species sex. The BBC reports:
You may not have realized it, but a piece of U.S. property was recently driving around on the surface of Mars. Tens of millions of miles away from the debt crisis, the heat wave and other big events of the summer, NASA's rover Opportunity just completed a 13-mile trip to allow scientists to examine a Martian crater.
Kentucky's General Fund tax receipts for July, the first month of fiscal year 2012, were more than $638 million, a 6.9 percent increase compared to July 2010 figures. "Kentucky has seen a strengthening of General Fund revenue collections for the past five quarters and the Commonwealth’s economic recovery is continuing into the new fiscal year," state Budget Director Mary Lassiter said in a press release Wednesday. “The Consensus Forecasting Group last week affirmed that revenue growth is ahead of pace by predicting that General Fund receipts will exceed the budgeted levels by $192.0 million,” she said. “While we are cautiously optimistic about the revenue outlook, we still have a challenge ahead to balance the budget this fiscal year.”
Proponents of organic meat often make the case that it's inherently better for people's health and the environment than meat raised by conventional farming methods. But the actual impacts of organic production can be tough for scientists to prove.
Federal prosecutors contend that a terrorism-related case against Waad Ramadan Alwan, 30, should be tried in a civilian court because the Geneva Conventions don’t protect him from prosecution here. Alwan is charged in a 23-count indictment that accuses him and Mohanad Shareef Hammadi, 23, of attempting to support terrorism in Iraq. Federal authorities arrested the men May 25 in Bowling Green. A federal grand jury indicted Alwan and Hammadi on May 26.
Following a luncheon Tuesday in Owensboro, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said he was close to announcing his three appointments to the bipartisan supercommitee responsible for reducing the federal deficit. Wednesday morning, McConnell named Sens. Jon Kyl of Arizona, Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania and Rob Portman of Ohio to the committee. The Kentucky Republican spoke alongside freshman U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., at the Noon Rotary Club in Owensboro. Both McConnell and Paul spoke to the crowd before opening the floor for questions. Their messages were similar: Spending in Washington, D.C., needs to be cut, and government has grown too large.
For a moment Tuesday, it looked as if Steve Wiggins wouldn’t get to pose his question to U.S. Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., at a packed town hall meeting in Ohio County. Wiggins stood through the meeting, listening to Paul speak against what he calls big government and the over-regulation of farms and small businesses, as well as the spending problem in Washington, D.C. Finally, Wiggins got to ask his question, and the exchange arguably offered the best illustration of the mood inside the room.
Salvador Zamora's hunger strike began the day Georgia's immigration law went into effect. Yesterday, on the 40th day of his strike, Zamora, pushed in a wheelchair by a cadre of fellow activists, delivered a letter to Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal's office.
Saying there’s “too much water under the bridge to return” to Kentucky State University, fired agriculture professor Harold Benson plans to sue his former employer, his attorney says. Brenda Allen told The State Journal Tuesday that her client was unable to reach a settlement with KSU, and she’s preparing to file suit on his behalf. Allen says she is awaiting documents she requested from KSU under the Kentucky Open Records Act, and will likely file the suit in early September. She argues that her client was tenured faculty and couldn’t legally be terminated.