Governor Jan Brewer signed legislation Monday that will force a host of cities to change their election dates.
Right now cities can choose candidates for council and mayor on any of four days any year. This new law limits that to just two days on even-numbered years -- the same days as elections for state and federal officers. The move came over objections from local officials. They fear forcing consolidation will mean local races will be buried on the statewide ballot and ignored. Tucson city attorney Mike Rankin is one of the foes.
The sound of school buses is familiar during the school year.
But residents of Chino Valley now hear those sounds only four days a week.
Jon Scholl, with the Chino Valley Unified School District, says cutting back on bus service saved the district money.
“We go to school Monday through Thursday," Scholl said. "It did not decrease the minimum number of minutes that we still need. Whether you’re on a five-day week or a four-day week, it’s the same. Our students just go to school a little bit longer to make up for that fifth day.”
Xing Wei, who raises pigeons for lucrative races in China, is shown in Beijing with his favorite bird, Ike. He sells Ike's offspring to wealthy buyers for $15,000.
Credit Louisa Lim / NPR
These pigeons belong to Yang Shibo, who breeds them in an enclosed balcony on the 13th floor of a Beijing apartment building. His best bird cost him $1,000; its descendants have earned him $150,000 in prize money.
To the average observer, they look like ordinary pigeons, caged into a balcony in a high-rise Beijing apartment. But make no mistake. These cooing birds, according to breeder Yang Shibo, are like top-of-the-line sports cars.
"These are the Ferraris of the bird world," he says. "They're the most expensive, and the fastest."
The price of racing pigeons is soaring sky-high, pushed up by wealthy Chinese buyers.
Americans Elect, the nationwide effort to launch a credible third-party presidential campaign, has money, media attention and — most importantly — access to the ballot in dozens of states.
What it doesn't have is a candidate for president.
So if it follows its own rules, the nonprofit, nonpartisan organization won't field a presidential candidate alongside President Obama and presumed Republican nominee Mitt Romney on Nov. 6, it announced Tuesday.
But the group also left the door open to bending those rules.
Two soundbites from CEO Jamie Dimon at today's shareholders meeting
The Justice Department has begun looking into JPMorgan Chase's $2 billion-and-counting loss from a hedge account, The Wall Street Journal reports. It cites "a person familiar with the matter" as its source.
The Journal adds that "the probe is at an early stage and it isn't clear what possible legal violation federal investigators may be focusing on."
The school year is winding down, and lots of young people are in the market for a summer job. But finding one in this economy can be hard, especially for teenagers. Host Michel Martin speaks with Labor Secretary Hilda Solis about what the Obama Administration is trying to do to help.
With the economic troubles of the past few years, it's no surprise that the number of people using food stamps is soaring. The U.S. Department of Agriculture reports that an average of 44 million people were on food assistance last year; that's up from 17 million in 2000.
What might be surprising, though, is one subgroup that's taken a particularly hard hit.