5:17pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Energy

A Debate Over Who Regulates Gas 'Fracking' in Penn.

A drilling rig looms behind a barn in Tioga County, Pennsylvania.
Scott Detrow StateImpact Pennsylvania

A new Pennsylvania law could curb municipalities' ability to zone and regulate hydraulic fracturing — or "fracking." And that raises questions about how much say a local government should have over what goes on within its borders.

State lawmakers are grappling with how to update Commonwealth's decades-old Oil and Gas Act to catch up with a natural gas drilling boom.

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5:17pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Energy

Big Solar Project Moves Forward Without Uncle Sam

Originally published on Thu December 1, 2011 4:05 am

SolarCity has received financing from Bank of America Merrill Lynch to install solar electricity systems on houses on military bases, like one here at Soaring Heights Communities at Davis Monthan Air Force Base outside Tucson, Ariz.
Lend Lease

We've heard a lot about Solyndra, a solar panel maker that went bankrupt despite lots of federal subsidies. But on Wednesday, a solar installation company and one of the country's biggest banks announced a billion-dollar project to put solar systems on the roofs of military housing. And they're doing it without the kind of federal help Solyndra got.

When SolarCity CEO Lyndon Rive came up with a plan to put solar on the rooftops of military housing around the country, he was sure he'd need federal backing to get loans for such a big project.

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5:13pm

Wed November 30, 2011
The Two-Way

Survey: Americans Will Forfeit $34 Billion Worth Of Vacation Days In 2011

Originally published on Wed November 30, 2011 5:28 pm

A traditional arabic Dhow sails in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Zanzibar, Tanzania.
Chris Jackson Getty Images

For the past few years, the travel site Expedia has conducted a survey about the world's vacation habits and like in years past, this year's survey found that the United States is one of the countries that gives its workers fewer vacation days and one of the countries in which workers leave the most number of vacation days unused.

CNN Money reports:

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5:01pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Opinion

A Father's Promise, Reinvented And Renewed

istockphoto.com

Ken Harbaugh is a former Navy pilot and an NPR commentator.

When I was five, my father made a promise he never intended to keep. He had returned from a long trip, with presents. I got a fossilized shark tooth, and spent the next month asking about fossils.

At some point, my father made the mistake of describing a massive fossil bed somewhere in Germany. I begged him to take me. There were good reasons that could never happen. Dad knew nothing about fossils; Germany was far away; I was five. But I would not be deterred.

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4:41pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Economy

Stocks Soar, But How Strong Is The Economy?

The U.S. economy is experiencing its strongest across-the-board growth of the year, as private companies hire more people, some manufacturers expand and the stock market surges on a plan to ease Europe's financial crisis. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 490 points Wednesday, an increase of more than 4 percent.

But analysts say the economy isn't growing robustly enough to lower unemployment, stem government layoffs or revive a housing market that remains extremely weak.

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4:19pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Lexington/Richmond

Pension Reform Pitch at the State Capitol

Lexington Mayor Jim Gray Speaking Before a Legislative Committee at the State Capitol
Stu Johnson WEKU News

Lexington’s mayor today asked state lawmakers to loosen their reigns on his city so it can enact pension reforms.   Like most Kentucky cities and the Commonwealth itself, Lexington needs to fix its pension program.  But unlike other Kentucky communities, the state must approve any pension reforms enacted by Lexington’s city leaders.  “The headline in all that is we’ve got problems there…you all know about these problems…you’ve got them at the state level to…ours is unique because you have a special legislation associated with Lexington,” said Jim Gray.

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4:12pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Business and the Economy

Rupp Talk in Frankfort

It’s not a question of if whether changes will come to Lexington’s Rupp Arena, but it’s a question of when.  Rupp, which is the basketball home of the University of Kentucky Wildcats, was discussed today by state lawmakers.  Lexington Mayor Jim Gray told them his city may ask the state to help finance a Rupp Arena project.  “What we’re doing is examining our financial options now and that will be part of the financing options that are considered..what would be the sources…how would we encourage funding and support..from private sector and the public sector,” said Gray.

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3:40pm

Wed November 30, 2011
It's All Politics

In South Carolina, A Resurgent Gingrich Attracts Jubilant Crowds

House Speaker Newt Gingrich talks with Rep. John Kasich of Ohio while President Bill Clinton signs the Balanced Budget Agreement on the South Lawn of the White House in 1997.
PAUL J. RICHARDS AFP/Getty Images

Newt Gingrich traveled across South Carolina this week appearing at a number of town-hall-style meetings where he talked to voters and answered questions — mostly the same questions at every stop. He talked about the improving the economy, creating a new immigration policy, repealing President Obama's health care reform plan and transforming Washington.

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3:38pm

Wed November 30, 2011
The Two-Way

80-Year-Old Says He Accidentally Left His Life Savings In Donated Suit

A Goodwill store.
screenshot WQAD

This is a pretty heartbreaking story: An 80-year-old man donated a suit to a Goodwill store in western Illinois. The problem is that he didn't realize until it was too late that his $13,000 life savings were in the suit's pocket.

The AP reports:

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3:00pm

Wed November 30, 2011
Economy

What Did The Central Banks Do?

Originally published on Wed November 30, 2011 6:49 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

Now, if you've been following events in the eurozone over the past few months with equal parts anxiety and confusion, you're not alone. To help put today's news into a broader debt crisis context, we're joined by Felix Salmon. He blogs about finance for Reuters.com. Felix, welcome.

FELIX SALMON: Thanks, Guy.

RAZ: In your blog today, you call this coordinated action by the central banks, and I'm quoting you, "a holiday greeting card to the financial markets." Why?

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