Latest Pennsylvania news, sports, business, and entertainment

 

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – Gov. Tom Corbett is taking more time to decide whether to challenge Attorney General Kathleen Kane’s rejection of his effort to hire a British firm to manage the $3.5 billion Pennsylvania Lottery. A Department of Revenue spokeswoman said Friday the administration and London-based Camelot Global Services agreed to extend the firm’s bid through March 18. Spokeswoman Elizabeth Brassell says the administration has a March 16 deadline to appeal Kane’s decision in court. Kane said last week she wouldn’t approve Camelot’s 20- to 30-year contract because state law doesn’t allow the governor to privatize the management of the lottery nor does it allow the expansion of gambling that the contract would permit. The contract’s legality is also being challenged in court by Democratic lawmakers and the union that represents lottery employees.

 

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) – A Republican state lawmaker is publicly urging Gov. Tom Corbett to support a Medicaid expansion, a sign that Corbett’s facing a split in his own party as several other Republican governors embrace the expansion. House Human Services Committee Chairman Gene DiGirolamo said Friday that rejecting an offer of increased federal funding to expand Medicaid eligibility threatens hospital finances and ensures many low-income Pennsylvanians will miss out on primary health care. Republican governors of three other heavily populated states, Florida, Michigan, and Ohio, say they’re going along with the expansion. However, Corbett says he won’t take part unless Pennsylvania gets more ability to shape Medicaid’s insurance plans. Corbett’s insurance commissioner, Michael Consedine, said Thursday that the Corbett administration isn’t willing to build on a system that they think is broken.

 

(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)

 

The latest business news

 

NEW YORK (AP) – Stocks closed higher Friday, but the S&P 500 still posted its first weekly loss of the year. The Dow rose 120 points to close at 14,001. The S&P 500 rose 13 points to 1,516 but still had a loss of 0.3 percent for the week. The Nasdaq rose 30 to 3,162.

 

NEW YORK (AP) – There’s little change in the price of oil after a 5 percent fall over the last two days. Benchmark crude for April delivery rose 29 cents to finish at $93.13 a barrel. Bent crude, used to price oil that many U.S. refineries use to make gasoline, rose 57 cents to end at $114.10 a barrel. The national average for a gallon of regular gasoline is at $3.78, about where it was yesterday.

 

LONDON (AP) – Moody’s has downgraded Britain’s government bond rating one notch from the top AAA to AA1. The credit ratings agency cites weaknesses in the economy’s medium-term outlook.

 

DUBLIN (AP) – Ireland’s government says an Irish meat processor has been caught labeling horsemeat as beef and shipping it to a company in the Czech Republic. Ireland says its fraud detectives identified the practice at a small slaughterhouse in County Tipperary and immediately shut down the facility.

 

NEW YORK (AP) – A federal judge is blocking Apple from conducting a shareholder votes on a package of governance proposals. This is victory for a rebel investor who is trying to persuade the company to share more of its cash with investors. Apple’s stock fell 31 cents to $451 in extended trading after the ruling came out.

 

(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)

 

Features & Entertainment

 

DETROIT (AP) – A Michigan hospital has settled a lawsuit that accused it of agreeing to a man’s request that no black nurses care for his newborn. Hurley Medical Center and four nurses who sued said Friday the lawsuit was “amicably resolved.” The Flint hospital says the conduct wasn’t consistent with hospital policies and that it “fundamentally opposes” racial discrimination. The hospital says the father showed a supervisor his swastika tattoo.

 

LOS ANGELES (AP) – The economy may have remained sluggish last year but Americans refused to scrimp on their pets, with animal lovers spending upwards of $53 billion on food, veterinary care, kennels, and other services in 2012. That’s up 5 percent from 2011, when spending first broke the $50 billion barrier, says the American Pet Products Association, a trade group based in Greenwich, Conn. In addition, APPA President and CEO Bob Vetere predicts another 4 percent gain this year. At about $34.3 billion, food and vet care represented about two-thirds of total spending, with money spent on supplies and over-the-counter medications rising by more than 7 percent. Spending on the growing market of alternative vet care, such as acupuncture, totaled about $12.5 billion. Vetere says spending on services like grooming; boarding, hotels, and pet sitting grew nearly 10 percent during 2012 to almost $4.4 billion.

 

LOS ANGELES (AP) – “Argo” has been picking up steam the past several weeks and could ride the wave to a win for Best Picture at the Oscars this Sunday. If it does, Ben Affleck would win an Oscar for producing the film, making up for his snub for Best Director. If Daniel Day-Lewis wins Best Actor for “Lincoln,” he’ll be the first to do so three times. Lincoln director Steven Spielberg is also expected to win his third Oscar. Anne Hathaway’s considered a shoo-in for Best Supporting Actress and Jennifer Lawrence looks like she’ll be named Best Actress.

 

(Copyright 2012, The Associated Press, All Rights Reserved)