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06/12/2021   Seattle PI Business

SAO PAULO — Brazil’s President Jair Bolsonaro led a throng of motorcyclist supporters through the streets of Sao Paulo on Saturday and got hit with a fine for failure to wear a mask.

Sao Paulo’s state government press office said a fine — equivalent to about $110 — would be imposed for violation of a rule that has required masks in public places since May 2020.

Bolsonaro’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Bolsonaro, who tested positivie for the coronavirus last year, also was fined for failure to wear a mask during a rally with supporters in May in the northeastern state of Maranhao.

The conservative president waved to the crowd from his motorcycle and later spoke from atop a sound truck to helmeted but largely maskless backers. They cheered and chanted while he insisted that masks were useless for those already vaccinated — an assertion disputed by most public health experts.

Vaccines are designed chiefly to protect recipients from getting sick, not necessarily from being infected. While studies show many vaccines reduce viral load and likely spread, not all varieties have been fully studied.

Less than 12% of Brazil’s population has received both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, according to the Ministry of Health.

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MORE ON THE PANDEMIC:

— Brazil President Bolsonaro fined for no mask during motorcycle rally

— U.S. governors weigh ending emergency orders as virus cases wane

— US air travel at 2 million on Friday, rebounds with more vaccinations

— Aid groups appeal to G-7 for logistical support, cash to get shots into arms to limit variants, dent global pandemic

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— Follow more of AP’s pandemic coverage at...

06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
A sniffer dog being trained to detect coronavirus from human sweat samples at the Small Animal Teaching Hospital at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand, last month.
06/12/2021   Seattle PI Business

DALLAS (AP) — The airline industry’s recovery from the pandemic passed a milestone as more than 2 million people streamed through U.S. airport security checkpoints on Friday for the first time since early March 2020.

The Transportation Security Administration announced Saturday that 2.03 million travelers were screened at airport checkpoints on Friday. It was the first time in 15 months that the number of security screenings has surpassed 2 million in a single day.

Airline bookings have been picking up since around February, as more Americans were vaccinated against COVID-19 and – at least within the United States – travel restrictions such as mandatory quarantines began to ease.

The recovery is not complete. Friday's crowds were only 74% of the volume compared to the same day in 2019. However, the 2.03 million figure was 1.5 million more travelers than the same day last year, according to the TSA.

The 2-million mark represents quite a turnaround for the travel industry, which was hammered by the pandemic. There were days in April 2020 when fewer than 100,000 people boarded planes in the U.S., and the CEO of Boeing predicted that at least one major U.S. airline would go bankrupt.

Most of the airlines are still losing money. Southwest eked out a narrow first-quarter profit thanks to its share of $64 billion in federal pandemic relief to the industry, and others are expected to follow suit later this year.

The fear of large-scale furloughs has lifted. United Airlines, which lost $7 billion and threatened to furlough 13,000 workers last fall, told employees this week that their jobs are secure even when the federal money runs out in October.

That's because airlines like United are upbeat about salvaging the peak summer vacation season. International travel and business...

06/12/2021   Seattle PI Business

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — An auction for a ride into space next month alongside Jeff Bezos and his brother ended with a winning $28 million bid Saturday.

The Amazon founder's rocket company, Blue Origin, did not disclose the winner’s name following the live online auction. The identity will be revealed in a couple weeks — closer to the brief up-and-down flight from West Texas on July 20, the 52nd anniversary of Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin’s moon landing.

It will be the first launch of Blue Origin’s New Shepard rocket with people on board, kicking off the company’s space tourism business. Fifteen previous test flights of the reusable rocket and capsule since 2015 — short hops lasting about 10 minutes — were all successful.

Saturday’s auction followed more than a month of online bidding that reached $4.8 million by Friday. More than 7,500 people from 159 countries registered to bid, according to Blue Origin. More than 20 bidders — the high rollers — took part in Saturday's auction.

Bezos announced Monday that he and his younger brother, Mark, would be on board New Shepard’s first crew flight; the news quickly boosted bidding. The winning amount is being donated to Blue Origin’s Club for the Future, an educational effort to promote science and tech among young people.

The completely automated capsule can carry up to six passengers, each with their own big window. Blue Origin's top sales director, Ariane Cornell, said following the auction that the fourth and final seat on the debut crew flight will be announced soon.

Blue Origin has yet to open ticket sales to the public or divulge prices.

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The Associated Press Health and Science Department receives support from the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Department of Science Education. The AP is solely responsible...

06/12/2021   Seattle PI Business

FALMOUTH, England (AP) — Turbulence from the divorce between the U.K. and the European Union provided an unwanted distraction at the Group of Seven summit taking place in southwest England, with British Prime Minister Boris Johnson saying Saturday that post-Brexit agreements will fail if the EU continues to take a “theologically draconian” approach to the rules.

Johnson held meetings with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Emmanuel Macron and the bloc’s top officials on the sidelines of the summit he is hosting. Afterwards, the prime minister claimed the EU was not taking a “sensible or pragmatic” approach to post-Brexit arrangements, and he threatened to use an emergency clause to suspend agreed upon rules if the bloc did not compromise.

Britain and the EU are locked in an escalating diplomatic feud over Northern Ireland, the only part of the U.K. that borders the 27-nation bloc. The EU is angry over the British government's delay in implementing new checks on some goods coming into Northern Ireland from the rest of the U.K., while Britain says the checks are imposing a big burden on businesses and destabilizing Northern Ireland’s hard-won peace.

U.S. President Joe Biden has gotten drawn into the spat, raising concerns about the potential threat to Northern Ireland’s peace accord.

The new arrangements, designed to keep an open border between Ireland and its northern neighbor, have angered Northern Ireland’s British unionists, who say they weaken ties with the rest of the U.K. Tensions over the new trade rules were a contributing factor to a week of street violence in April, largely in unionist areas of Northern Ireland, that saw youths pelt police with bricks, fireworks and firebombs.

European Commission President Ursula Von der Leyen tweeted after...

06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
Stephen A. Schwarzman, Blackstone Group’s chief executive, with President Donald J. Trump in 2017.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
The F.B.I. headquarters in Washington. The bureau has resources to recover stolen cryptocurrencies that are beyond the reach of most law enforcement agencies.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
When restaurants closed to slow the spread of the coronavirus, the nationwide market for oysters cratered. That’s not the end of the story.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
Dr. Janet Woodcock has been with the Food and Drug Administration since 1986 and is its acting commissioner.
06/12/2021   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — Democrats are committed to passing legislation this year to curb prescription drug prices, but they're still disagreeing on how to cut costs for patients and taxpayers while preserving profits that lure investors to back potentially promising treatments.

It boils down to finding a balance: How big a stick should Medicare have to negotiate prices with pharmaceutical companies?

With hundreds of billions of dollars in potential savings, the stakes are enormous. Medicare spends upward of $200 billion a year on prescription drugs, a category that keeps growing as costly new drugs enter the market. An Alzheimer’s medication approved this past week comes with a price of $56,000 a year, for example, and co-payments could skyrocket for patients who use it.

A successful bill would advance a key plank of President Joe Biden's domestic agenda even as Democrats struggle to make progress on other fronts. Allowing Medicare to negotiate drug prices consistently wins strong public support in opinion polls.

In the House, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is steering legislation that imposes a steep tax on drugmakers that refuse to deal with Medicare, while using an average of prices in other economically advanced countries as a reference point for fair rates here. Her bill would limit price increases and allow private health plans to receive Medicare's negotiated rates.

In the Senate, Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore, is also working to craft legislation. His starting point is a less ambitious bipartisan bill from a previous Congress. It would have limited price increases for drugs already on the market, but not initial prices. It would have capped Medicare recipients' out-of-pocket costs for pharmacy drugs, which is in the Pelosi bill.

Wyden said he...

06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
Unemployed Broadway actor Max Kumangai started a bread baking business during the pandemic.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
These complex takeover vehicles serve an important purpose that’s worth protecting.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
Britain downgraded Portugal from an approved holiday destination to a potentially dangerous breeding ground for coronavirus variants. At the beach in the Algarve, before the new Covid rules.
06/12/2021   New York Times Business News
Opener’s Black Fly during a test flight near Hollister, Calif.
06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

NEW DELHI (AP) — Ram Babu moved from his village to the Indian capital New Delhi in 1980, to clean cars. Soon, he learned to drive and got a job as a tour bus driver. Decades later, he set up his own company, Madhubani Tours and Travels.

In March 2020, a stringent nationwide lockdown to fight the coronavirus pandemic froze economic activity overnight. Babu's business collapsed, and he drove his family back to their village.

“Since March last year, we haven’t earned a single rupee,” he said. “All of my three buses are standing still for more than a year. We are completely broken.”

India’s economy was on the cusp of recovery from the first pandemic shock when a new wave of infections swept the country, infecting millions, killing hundreds of thousands and forcing many people to stay home. Cases are now tapering off, but prospects for many Indians are drastically worse as salaried jobs vanish, incomes shrink and inequality is rising.

Decades of progress in alleviating poverty are imperiled, experts say, and getting growth back on track hinges on the fate of the country’s sprawling middle class. It’s a powerful and diverse group ranging from salaried employees to small business owners like Babu: many millions of people struggling to hold onto their hard-earned gains.

The outbreak of the pandemic triggered the worst downturn since the Great Depression of the 1930s and as it gradually ebbs, many economies are bouncing back. The World Bank foresees 5.6% global growth for 2021, the best since 1973.

India's economy contracted 7.3% in the fiscal year that ended in March, worsening from a slump that slashed growth to 4% from 8% in the two years before the pandemic hit. Economists fear there will be no rebound similar to the ones seen in the U.S. and other major economies.

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06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

BEIJING (AP) — Eight people died and three others were injured when a toxic chemical leaked Saturday at a plant in the southwestern Chinese city of Guiyang, authorities said.

The leak happened as workers were unloading a shipment of methyl formate from a vehicle at a chemical handling facility. An investigation is underway, according to the China National Emergency Broadcasting.

Methyl formate is used in a variety of chemical processes and as an insecticide. It can cause skin irritation and may be toxic if ingested or inhaled.

The Chinese economy’s emphasis on chemicals and heavy industry has led to frequent deadly accidents, often traced to weak adherence to safety standards and corruption among enforcement bodies. Those responsible are often handed harsh punishments, but high demand and the desire for profits often trump such concerns.

Industrial accidents, many involving chemicals, have killed hundreds in recent years, including 78 at a plant in eastern China in 2019.

Among the worst accidents was a massive 2015 explosion at a chemical warehouse in the port city of Tianjin that killed 173 people, most of them firefighters and police officers. The blast was blamed on illegal construction and unsafe storage of volatile materials.

06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
Allowance, holidays and … cryptocurrency.
06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. General Assembly on Friday approved the nomination of Costa Rican economist Rebecca Grynspan to head the U.N. agency promoting trade and development, the first woman and Central American to lead the Geneva-based organization.

She was nominated by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres as secretary-general of the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, known as UNCTAD. It supports developing countries in their efforts to benefit from the globalized economy and to deal with potential drawbacks from economic integration.

Since 2014, Grynspan has been secretary-general of the Ibero-American General Secretariat, which supports preparations for Ibero-American summits. From 2010 to 2014, she was the deputy administrator of the United Nations Development Program.

She previously served as UNDP’s regional director for Latin America and the Caribbean, a member of the high-level panel on financing for development, and second vice president of Costa Rica from 1994 to 1998.

Grynspan called UNCTAD “a key partner for all countries facing the challenges of post-pandemic recovery,” adding, “I believe that, at this critical time, UNCTAD can make an essential contribution for a more just, sustainable and inclusive recovery for all.”

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

President Joe Biden might have persuaded some of the world's largest economies to hike taxes on corporations, but the U.S. Congress could be a far tougher sell.

White House press secretary Jen Psaki said Friday that leaders of the Group of Seven — which also includes the United Kingdom, France, Canada, Germany, Italy and Japan — agreed with Biden on placing a global minimum tax of at least 15% on large companies. The G-7 leaders, participating in a three-day summit in England, affirmed their finance ministers who earlier this month endorsed the global tax minimum.

“America is rallying the world to make big multinational corporations pay their fair share so we can invest in our middle class at home,” Jake Sullivan, the president's national security adviser, said Friday on Twitter.

A minimum tax is supposed to halt an international race to the bottom for corporate taxation that has led multinational businesses to book their profits in countries with low tax rates. This enables them to avoid taxes and encourages countries to slash rates. The minimum rate would make it tougher for companies to avoid taxes, and could possibly supplant a digital services tax that many European nations are imposing on U.S. tech firms that pay at low rates.

Biden administration officials believe the use of overseas tax havens has discouraged companies from investing domestically, at a cost to the middle class. The president hopes a G-7 endorsement can serve as a springboard for getting buy-in from the larger Group of 20 complement of nations.

The agreement is not a finished deal, as the terms would need to be agreed upon by countries in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and implemented by each of them. The president needs other countries to back a global minimum tax...

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq’s oil sector is rebounding after a catastrophic year triggered by the coronavirus pandemic, with key investment projects on the horizon, Iraq's oil minister said Friday. But he also warned that an enduring bureaucratic culture of fear threatens to stand in the way.

Iraq is currently trading oil at $68 per barrel, close to the approximately $76 needed for the state to operate without reliance on the central bank to meet government expenditures.

Oil Minister Ihsan Abdul-Jabbar Ismail took over the unenviable job of supervising Iraq’s most vital industry at the height of an oil price crash that slashed oil revenues by more than half last year. Since then, he has had to balance domestic demands for more revenue to fund state coffers and pressure from OPEC to keep exports low to stabilize the global oil market.

With the sector rebounding, Ismail told The Associated Press, he can now focus on other priorities. In the interview, he offered a rare glimpse into the inner-workings of the country’s most significant ministry — Iraq’s oil industry is responsible for 90% of state revenues.

He said cutthroat Iraqi politics and corruption fears often derailed critical investment projects during his tenure and those of his predecessors — a source of long-term frustration for international companies working in Iraq.

“In the Ministry of Oil, the big mistake, the big challenge are the delays in decision-making or no decision-making at all," he said, attributing indecisiveness to fears of political reprisal from groups or powerful lawmakers whose interests are not served.

He described what he said was a warped work culture where allegations of corruption are used as tools by political players to get their way. He alleged that the mere possibility is often enough to...

06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
A nurse preparing a dose of Johnson & Johnson’s Covid-19 vaccine at a pop-up clinic in Staten Island.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif. Apple and Microsoft turned over so-called metadata of people who worked in Congress, including phone records, device information and addresses.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
The experience that makes jumping through the hoops worth it: A beach in Waimanalo on Oahu.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
The federal agency that enforces workplace discrimination laws says companies can require vaccines, but most business leaders are hoping to avoid a mandate.
06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

SAN RAMON, Calif. (AP) — Seeking to protect its image as a guardian of personal privacy, Apple maintains it was blindsided and handcuffed by a Trump administration probe that resulted in the company handing over phone data from two Democratic congressmen.

Apple delivered its version of events Friday in response to news reports detailing the U.S. Justice Department's aggressive attempts to use its legal power to identify leaks tied to an investigation into former President Donald Trump's ties to Russia.

The Justice Department was able to persuade a federal grand jury to issue a subpoena that culminated in Apple turning over the metadata — information that can include general records of calls and texts — about House Intelligence Committee members Adam Schiff and Eric Swalwell, both California Democrats, during 2018. Both lawmakers were key figures on the committee looking into Trump's connections with Russia; Schiff is now the panel's chair.

Neither Schiff and Swalwell knew some of the information had been seized until May 5, after a series of gag orders had finally expired, according to the company.

The revelation of Apple's compliance with the subpoena emerged at a time when the company has been ramping up efforts to frame privacy as “fundamental human right" in its marketing campaigns. Apple also upped the privacy ante in April when it rolled out privacy controls on the iPhone as part of an effort to make it more difficult for companies such as Facebook to track people’s online activities to help sell ads.

In a statement, Apple emphasized it will continue to fight unjustified legal demands for personal information and keep customers informed about them.

But in this instance, Apple said it was constrained by a nondisclosure order signed by a federal magistrate judge...

06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
Attorney General William P. Barr said in an interview that he was “not aware of any congressman’s records being sought in a leak case” while he was in office.
06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

GURNEE, Ill. (AP) — Six Flags Great America has settled a class-action lawsuit by agreeing to pay $36 million over the use of fingerprint scanners at its Illinois theme park.

Pass holders and others who visited the Gurnee park between October 2013 and Dec. 31, 2018 could get up to $200 each, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Texas-based Six Flags declined to comment Friday.

Six Flags was accused of violating an Illinois law that requires companies to get permission before using certain technologies to identify customers. The company denied that it was collecting biometric identifiers and claimed visitors had given consent.

The Illinois Supreme Court in 2019 allowed the class-action case to continue, saying the privacy law doesn't require someone to show an actual injury such as identify theft.

A final hearing in a Lake County court is scheduled for Oct. 29. Lawyers are seeking a third of the settlement for legal fees.

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — President Joe Biden’s nominee to oversee federal lands in the U.S. West is facing Republican pressure to withdraw over her ties to environmental activists convicted of spiking trees to sabotage a national forest timber sale more than 30 years ago.

U.S. Sen. John Barrasso, the ranking Republican on the Senate energy committee, said Friday that U.S. Bureau of Land Management nominee Tracy Stone-Manning should be disqualified for her collaboration with “extreme environmental activists.”

As a 23-year-old graduate student at the University of Montana, Stone-Manning sent a letter to federal officials in 1989 saying spikes had been inserted into trees in Idaho’s Clearwater National Forest. The profanity-laced letter warned “a lot of people could get hurt" if logging proceeded, according to court documents obtained by The Associated Press from federal archives.

Spiking trees involves inserting metal or ceramic rods into trunks so they can't be safely cut down, and the tactic has sometimes been used to halt timber sales.

Stone-Manning testified against two friends who were convicted in the case, saying she mailed the letter at the request of one of them and to prevent people from getting hurt. She was given immunity to testify and was never charged with any crimes.

The case received extensive media coverage at the time, and Stone-Manning years later had to explain her involvement to Montana lawmakers prior to her confirmation to lead the state’s environment agency under former Gov. Steve Bullock.

Its resurfacing comes as some Republicans have sought to undermine Stone-Manning's nomination, characterizing her as a partisan Democrat and environmental radical.

Barrasso, of Wyoming, said after seeing the documents in the case that Stone-Manning's...

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

CARBIS BAY, England (AP) — Group of Seven leaders brought pledges to share vaccine doses and make a fairer global economy Friday to a seaside summit in England, where British Prime Minister Boris Johnson said the coronavirus pandemic should not be allowed to leave a “lasting scar” on the world.

The wealthy nations’ leaders were all smiles and unity as Johnson greeted them on the freshly raked sand of Carbis Bay, but they jostled over who was doing most to help the world’s poorer nations fight COVID-19.

Recovery from the pandemic was set to dominate their discussions, and members of the wealthy democracies club committed to sharing at least 1 billion vaccine shots with struggling countries. That includes a pledge from U.S. President Joe Biden to share 500 million doses, and a promise from Johnson for another 100 million shots.

Host Britain said the G-7 will also announce a package of measures aimed at reducing the chances of another pandemic. The U.K. government said the grandly titled “Carbis Bay Declaration” will aim for a 100-day goal to develop vaccines, treatments and diagnostics for future disease and to bolster surveillance for new illnesses.

The group will also pledge to strengthen the World Health Organization, which former President Donald Trump pulled out of and Biden rejoined.

Johnson said the goal of the measures was “to make sure that never again will we be caught unawares.”

Opening three days of talks in Cornwall, southwest England, Johnson warned that world leaders must not repeat errors made over the past 18 months — or those made in the recovery from the 2008 global financial crisis.

“It is vital that we don’t repeat the mistake of the last great crisis, the last great economic recession in 2008, when the recovery was not uniform across all parts of...

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — Top regulators pledged Friday to push reforms in a key corner of U.S. financial markets that the Federal Reserve and Treasury had to rush to support after it was roiled during the coronavirus outbreak in the spring of 2020.

Members of the Financial Stability Oversight Council discussed the reforms aimed at the so-called short-term funding markets, which include money market mutual funds holding trillions of dollars.

The oversight council is an interagency group headed by Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, who said the 2020 crisis prompted “extreme policy interventions” by the Federal Reserve and Treasury to restore order in the market.

Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell, also a member of the council, said the 2020 crisis was triggered by a “dash for cash” that prompted the Fed to step in with back-up financing to calm the turmoil.

“Rapid redemptions at money market funds resulted from and in turn exacerbated the liquidity pressures,” he told the panel.

Powell said after the Fed created a Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility with $10 billion in backing from the Treasury Department, the “turmoil subsided, conditions in short-term funding markets improved and access to credit increased.”

The council received a closed-door briefing from the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission on the comments it has collected on what reforms need to be pursued to make short-term funding markets more resilient at times of financial crisis.

SEC Chairman Gary Gensler told the group during its open meeting that he has directed SEC staff to prepare recommendations that can be voted on by the five-member SEC. Yellen said she fully supported the efforts by the SEC to reform the current system.

Council members also expressed concern that the global financial...

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — A group of House lawmakers put forward a sweeping legislative package Friday that could curb the market power of Big Tech companies and force Facebook, Google, Amazon or Apple to sever their dominant platforms from their other lines of business.

The bipartisan proposals are the culmination of a 15-month investigation by the House Judiciary Committee’s antitrust subcommittee, led by Democratic Rep. David Cicilline of Rhode Island. It concluded that the four tech giants have abused their market power by charging excessive fees, imposing tough contract terms and extracting valuable data from individuals and businesses that rely on them.

“Right now, unregulated tech monopolies have too much power over our economy,” Cicilline said in a statement. “They are in a unique position to pick winners and losers, destroy small businesses, raise prices on consumers and put folks out of work. Our agenda will level the playing field and ensure the wealthiest, most powerful tech monopolies play by the same rules as the rest of us.”

The proposed legislation targets the structure of the companies and could break them up, a radical step for Congress to take toward a powerful industry. The tech giants for decades have enjoyed light-touch regulation and star status in Washington, but have come under intensifying scrutiny and derision over issues of competition, consumer privacy and hate speech.

As a candidate, President Joe Biden said breaking up big tech companies should be considered, though he hasn’t spoken on the issue as president. If such steps were mandated, they could bring the biggest changes to the industry since the federal government’s landmark case against Microsoft almost 20 years ago.

Rep. Ken Buck of Colorado, the senior Republican on the antitrust panel,...

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- California Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed an executive order that will lift most of the state’s coronavirus rules.

The order Newsom signed Friday takes effect Tuesday. It will end the state’s stay-at-home order and its various amendments.

Starting Tuesday, there will be no capacity limits or physical distancing requirements for businesses. Fully vaccinated people can stop wearing masks in most places.

Newsom said he will not end the statewide declaration of emergency. That ensures the governor has the power to alter or suspend state laws in the future. That has angered Republican lawmakers who say the declaration is unnecessary.

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MORE ON THE PANDEMIC:

— AP source: J&J doses to be released, some tossed in U.S.

— Britain registers highest coronavirus cases since late February

— Leaders of G-7 nations gather to pledge 1B vaccine doses for world

— Reports of rising coronavirus cases in Russia

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— Follow more of AP’s pandemic coverage at https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-pandemic and https://apnews.com/hub/coronavirus-vaccine

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HONOLULU—Honolulu is loosening some restrictions on social activity now that more than half its population has been vaccinated against COVID-19.

The new rules allow outdoor social gatherings of up to 25 people and indoor gatherings of up to 10.

Karaoke bars and nightclubs may operate at 50% capacity if all attendees are tested for the disease or show proof they have been fully vaccinated.

The city will allow gatherings of 25 indoors and 75 outdoors once 60% of the population has been vaccinated. All limits will be lifted...

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

The Tri-Cities is becoming a center for Instagram-worthy barn-style homes after a pair of Tri-City entrepreneurs with a big social media following built one for themselves. Olivia “Liv” and Tanner Berg converted an old pole barn on their Kennewick property into a family home. The process was so rewarding – and interest from followers so…

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06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

A Tri-Cities architectural and engineering firm was bursting at the seams when the owner’s wife spotted an obvious solution. Christelle Walker-Prickett advised her husband, Harvey, to lease space in the building he was designing for Tri-Cities Insurance Professionals in Pasco. Harvey Prickett, president and principal of Wave Companies, took his wife’s suggestion. In September, he…

The post Wave Design Group needed space. Its client had office space for rent appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

A medical office complex in downtown Kennewick is getting a makeover to appeal to tenants who do not need a hospital across the street. The Kennewick Medical and Dental Center faces the former Kennewick General Hospital across Auburn Street and provided office space for hospital-adjacent businesses such as doctor and dentist offices, a laboratory and…

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06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

The Port of Kennewick’s efforts to revitalize a stretch of the downtown waterfront are being called into doubt over a last-minute addition to the concept: low-income housing. The port wants to incorporate low-income and other supportive housing at The Willows, the 6.55-acre former manufactured home site on Clover Island Drive, near the Columbia River and…

The post Is there room for low-income housing at Kennewick’s waterfront? appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

DETROIT (AP) — In a reversal from Trump administration policies, U.S. auto safety regulators say they will move to require or set standards for automatic emergency braking systems on new heavy trucks.

The Department of Transportation, which includes the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, announced the change Friday when it released its spring regulatory agenda.

It also will require what it said are rigorous testing standards for autonomous vehicles, and set up a national database to document automated-vehicle crashes.

The moves by the administration of President Joe Biden run counter to the agency's stance under President Donald Trump. NHTSA had resisted regulation of automated-vehicle systems, saying it didn't want to stand in the way of potential life-saving developments. Instead it relied on voluntary safety plans from manufacturers.

NHTSA had proposed a regulation on automatic emergency braking in 2015 before Trump took office, but it languished in the regulatory process. The agency says it has been studying use of the electronic systems, and it plans to publish a proposed rule in the Federal Register in April of next year. When a regulation is published, it opens the door to public comment.

“We are glad to see NHTSA finally take the next step in making large trucks safer by mandating AEB," said Jason Levine, director of the Center for Auto Safety, which was among the groups that petitioned for the requirement in 2015. “Unfortunately, at this rate, it will still be years until the technology that could help stop the 5,000 truck crash deaths on our roads is required,” he said in an email.

A trade group representing independent big rig drivers says the technology isn't ready for heavy vehicles and can unexpectedly activate without reason.

“Our members...

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Registration open for Fall Home Show in Pasco The Home Builders Association of Tri-Cities is accepting registrations for its 2021 Fall Home Show, to be held Oct. 1-3 at HAPO Center in Pasco. Exhibitor guides have been mailed to members and previous exhibitors. Digital copies are available at hbatc.com. Call 509-735-2745. HBA members receive a…

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06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Bellevue-based TerraPower, founded and helmed by Bill Gates to develop safe, carbon-free power, has selected a coal plant site in Wyoming for its next-generation nuclear project. TerraPower, together with partner PacifiCorp and Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordon, announced its “Natrium” technology will be built at the site of one of PacifiCorp’s retiring coal plants in Wyoming…

The post Tri-Cities loses TerraPower advanced nuclear plant to coal site in Wyoming appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

WASHINGTON (AP) — Former President Donald Trump’s signature border wall project would lose much of its funding as well as the fast-track status that enabled it to bypass environmental regulations under a Biden administration plan announced Friday.

President Joe Biden suspended construction of the wall upon taking office while his administration reviewed the project. That angered Republicans in Congress eager to see it go forward amid an increase in apprehensions of migrants along the southwest border.

The new plan does not cancel the wall project outright, but it's still likely to face opposition in Congress, where many Republicans are eager to promote a project closely associated with the former president.

Biden plans to return more than $2 billion that the Trump administration diverted from the Pentagon to help pay for the wall and use other money appropriated by Congress to address “urgent life, safety, and environmental issues” created by the construction. It also asks lawmakers not to provide any additional funding for what the Biden team believes is an unnecessary effort.

“Building a massive wall that spans the entire southern border and costs American taxpayers billions of dollars is not a serious policy solution or responsible use of federal funds,” the Office of Management and Budget said in a statement outlining the plan.

The government has built walls and other barriers along the 2,000-mile (3,200-kilometer) U.S.-Mexico border for decades to eliminate some of the easier routes of avoiding checkpoints. Trump turned the issue into a centerpiece of his political identity.

Trump vowed to build a “virtually impenetrable” wall, insisting it would be paid for by Mexico, which never happened. Instead, his administration set aside about $15 billion through a...

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

The city of Hermiston breaks ground July 7 on work to extend utilities to prepare the South Hermiston Industrial Park, known as SHIP, for future tenants. At full buildout, SHIP will feature 16 parcels ranging from 1.5 to 20 acres. It is expected to attract up to $70 million in private investment with future tenants…

The post Hermiston readies industrial park that could bring 250 jobs, $70M investment appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

NEW HIRES Miramar Health Center in Kennewick has announced the addition of two certified physician assistants to its team. Hiep Nguyen earned his master of clinical health services degree and physician assistant certification from MEDEX Northwest at the University of Washington, in Seattle. Seeing firsthand the hardships of a single mom emigrating to the U.S.…

The post Networking – June 2021 appeared first on Tri-Cities Area Journal of Business.

06/11/2021   Seattle PI Business

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — Dakota Access oil pipeline opponents asked a judge Friday to require the pipeline company and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to provide detailed monthly status reports while the federal government conducts an extensive environmental review of the project.

The request comes after U.S. District Judge James Boasberg ruled in May that the pipeline, which carries oil from North Dakota to a shipping point in Illinois, may continue operating while the Army Corps of Engineers conducts the review known as an environmental impact statement.

In court documents, attorneys for the pipeline company said Boasberg should not require the monthly reports and also renewed their longstanding request to have the case dismissed.

Boasberg issued his May ruling after attorneys for the pipeline’s Texas-based owner, Energy Transfer, argued that shuttering the pipeline would be a major economic blow to several entities, including North Dakota, and the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation, in the heart of the state’s oil patch.

Earthjustice attorney Jan Hasselman, who represents the Standing Rock Sioux and other tribes, said a decision on whether to appeal that order could come later.

Attorneys for the Standing Rock Sioux and other tribes say the pipeline is operating illegally without a federal permit granting easement to cross beneath Lake Oahe, a Missouri River reservoir near the Standing Rock reservation that is maintained by the Corps. They said preventing financial loss should not come at the expense of the other tribes, “especially when the law has not been followed.”

The Standing Rock Sioux, which more than four years ago sued the Corps for granting permits that led then-President Donald Trump to approve pipeline construction, draws its water from the Missouri...

06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Bankruptcies are filed under the following chapter headings:Chapter 7 — Straight Bankruptcy: debtor gives up non-exempt property and debt is discharged.Chapter 11 — Allows companies and individuals to restructure debts to repay them.Chapter 12 — Allows family farmers to restructure finances to avoid liquidation for foreclosure.Chapter 13 — Plan is devised by the individual to…

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06/11/2021   Tri-City Area Journal of Business

Top property values listed start at $700,000 and have been rounded to the nearest hundred figure. Property values are public record and can be found by visiting the county assessor’s office. BENTON COUNTY 623, 625, 627, 631, 635, 643, 647, 651, 648, 644, 622, 614 Marysville Way and 2968 Cashmere Drive, Richland, 13 parcels for…

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06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
The annual awards recognized journalism on the murder of George Floyd, including a special citation for Darnella Frazier, the teenager who filmed the killing. The public service prize went to The New York Times for Covid coverage.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook chief, testifying via video last year before the House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
The gap between workers and C.E.O.s widened during the pandemic as public companies granted top executives some of the richest pay packages ever.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
From reporting on the coronavirus pandemic to an investigation of China’s internment of Uyghurs, here’s the full list of winners and finalists.
06/11/2021   New York Times Business News
“The new regulations will have an impact on the entire economy,” said Christine Lambrecht, Germany’s minister of justice.
06/10/2021   Small Business CEO

When you want to keep your company running smoothly, one of the things you have to consider is how well your business can adapt to change. Companies — and individuals — who aren’t good at adapting may find that they’re not having the level of success they’d hoped for. That’s because the world of business moves and changes rapidly, and if you’re not keeping up with it your competitors can easily leave you behind.

Change management

Customers want to work with companies that are staying up with the latest and greatest in their industry. You can be one of those companies, if you’re committed to focusing on the value of change.…

The post Adapting to Change Can Help Protect Your Business appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/10/2021   Small Business CEO

Sheenstar

Juice filling machine - Sheenstar

A great innovative company that offers complete package solutions for all types of water used for drinking and beverage production lines and turnkey projects, is none other than “SheenStar”. It offers multiple solutions of systems systems of treatment of water, moulding machines (bottle blow), filling lines of liquids including (water, carbonated drinks, juice, beverages) labelling machines, 5 gallon water filling line, film shrink and cotton packing machine. It also provides good quality manufacturing.

Founded in 2010, Zhangjiagang Sheenstar Technology Co., Ltd focuses on production of water and beverages. It’s in Leyu town, Zhangjiagang City, Jiangsu Province, China, at NO88 Lezhong Road.…

The post The Filling Machine of Juice Bottle appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/10/2021   Small Business CEO

Investing in Section 12J has been quite popular among South Africans for a while now. Why wouldn’t it be? It’s the most effective tax saving option that allows small and medium businesses to grow by working towards increasing their equity finance access.

Property investment consultation

Since the Section 12J has been written into the Tax Act, SMMEs have seen an increase in investors, since those have been given the opportunity to achieve a 100% tax deduction by making those investments. This has turned out to be a win-win situation for everyone and the process of doing it has become much easier, as explained here.…

The post How & Where To Get Section 12J Property Investments In South Africa? appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/09/2021   Small Business CEO

The number of online buyers is expected to reach 2.14 billion in 2021. And that’s great news for entrepreneurs that are thinking of launching their own business. Even though the competition can be fierce, the opportunities to make sales and leverage digital business tools allow almost anyone to create a store and find their audience.

Start an online business

photo credit: Adomas Aleno / Unsplash

But getting started can be scary as well. You have to navigate countless regulations, figure out your place in the market, and be ready to meet customer expectations from day one.

To help you get started with all of that (and more), let’s go over a few of the key steps you’ll need to take to kickstart your online business in 2021.…

The post 4 Essential Steps to Kickstarting Your Online Business appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/09/2021   Small Business CEO

Regardless of the type of business you run, the industry you’re in, or the clients you service, you and your team surely collect data about customers frequently. In this day and age, when data is more prevalent and vital than ever, not to mention lucrative to hackers, it’s crucial to track, manage, secure, use, and preserve client details effectively.

Customer data management

This idea may sound a little overwhelming, but the practice doesn’t have to be. There are multiple steps you can take to manage data in your business successfully.

Work Out Your Goals

It’s essential to get clear on exactly which goals you’re pursuing with data management, so you can be more focused on collecting and managing relevant information.…

The post Tips for Successful Customer Data Management appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/09/2021   Small Business CEO

Whether you’re planning on investing in CNC machinery or already use it as part of your process, learning G Code could be a real feather in your cap. Don’t worry if you’ve never coded before or aren’t sure where to start, it’s incredibly easy to pick up with a little time and effort. Although you won’t become a master on your very first go, it’s an essential skill when it comes to making the most out of your CNC machine.

CNC machine programmed with G Code

photo credit: Peter Martin Hall / Flickr

Whether you’re interested in G Code milling commands or looking to develop a more general understanding of operations, your small business could really benefit from any newfound knowledge.…

The post Add to Your Small Business Skillset with G Code appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/08/2021   Small Business CEO

Solo entrepreneurs usually run small businesses. A small business is most likely to have budgetary constraints. In such a situation, the business owner would wear many hats, doing most of the work including accounts.

Small business accountant

Accounting is a very important activity and not giving it sufficient time and focus can cause problems in the long-run. Since entrepreneurs are more focused on business growth, they may not be able to devote time for accounting. This is why it makes sense to hire a small business accountant to ensure accounting operations are managed effectively.

There are many reasons why a small business should hire an accountant.…

The post Reasons to Hire a Small Business Accountant appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/08/2021   Small Business CEO

Generally when you’re running a business (even a small one), generating a decent amount of profit is going to be one of your main priorities. However, optimising the way you run your business in order to earn the biggest profit possible isn’t always easy.

Small business owners managing orders

photo credit: Amina Filkins / Pexels

You need to consider your expenses, your marketing, your physical space and so many other factors, but it’s not impossible to achieve a boost in your profits in 2021. Keep reading as we discuss five steps you can take now to change things up.

Get Specific and See Growth

Growing your client base and seeing happy customers is one of the most rewarding parts of owning a business.…

The post 5 Things You Can Do For Your Small Business to Boost Profits Today appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/08/2021   Small Business CEO

You might dream of creating a startup but wonder if you have what it takes to successfully helm it. You can take some inspiration from looking at the habits of the most successful entrepreneurs.

Businesswoman planning her day

Setting Boundaries

One thing that may surprise you is that successful entrepreneurs tend to be good at boundaries. Far from working 24/7, most make time for other things in their lives. The truth of the matter is that what your work life looks like at the beginning of a startup is probably not the same as when you are more successful, and the early days will be demanding ones.…

The post Emulate These Habits of Successful Entrepreneurs appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.

06/06/2021   Small Business CEO

Have you ever stopped to think of the number of small businesses in your locality? Every locality has its fair share of small business entities as they play an integral role in contributing to the overall net revenue. Apart from acting as an essential medium for promoting culture and tradition, businesses such as personal injury lawyers in Lakeland also maintain society’s ecosystem and encourage the spirit of entrepreneurship for future generations.

Marketing team devising marketing strategy

Even so, small businesses keep changing with regards to consumer behavior. Due to this, these businesses face budget constraints, which makes it difficult for them to compete with more established companies.…

The post Top Marketing Techniques for Small businesses in 2021 appeared first on SMALL BUSINESS CEO.