NEW YORK (Reuters) - Hurricane Irene could cost U.S. state and local governments billions of dollars in damages, but funds from the federal government might ultimately cover much of this expense. It is too early to estimate the cost of the storm, but New Jersey Governor Chris Christie said New Jersey alone may have suffered tens of billions of dollars in damage. The timing is terrible for municipalities as they dig their way out of their bleakest economic period in decades after the financial crisis and recession sank budgets and forced widespread cuts in expense and increased taxes. But Maryland said the federal government will reimburse the state for 75 percent of what it spends on emergency preparedness and the immediate response to the storm in a trend that may be replicated across the region. Just how well the United States can handle the unexpected expense is a different question as it battles record budget deficits and growing fears of a double dip recession. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said the cost to the state would be high, but mitigated by a federal disaster relief declaration. Cuomo told ABC News said the bill would come to millions of dollars. "It's my guess costs will be in the tens of millions," he said. He added that President Barack Obama's declaration of emergency for New York would allow the state to be reimbursed for many of the costs of the hurricane. New York State adopted an on-time budget in April that cut millions of dollars from many high-priority areas, such as education. "It's the last thing we needed now," Cuomo said. "We just came through a tough budget session and we didn't need any additional costs." New York City did not suffer as much damage as had been feared, but still the city's costs will mount up. Asked if the federal government would pick the overtime the city was spending to keep thousands of employees working in the aftermath of the storm, Mayor Michael Bloomberg on Sunday said, "My guess is probably not. Keep in mind, it's is substantial, but the city runs with overtime all the time." In New Jersey, however, the governor said he expected the costs to be astronomically high. "I've got to imagine that the damage estimates are going to be in the billions of dollars, if not in the tens of billions of dollars," Gov. Chris Christie said in an interview on Sunday on NBC's "Meet the Press" program. Obama has declared Virginia was in an emergency, but the state was not certain it had enough damage to meet criteria for a major disaster, which would send it extra federal funds. "This storm wasn't a catastrophe. We can't get in a helicopter and fly by and...call the president and say, 'Yeah this one's a go.' What we have to do is go through a damage assessment process," said the State Coordinator of Emergency Management Michael Cline. FEMA BEGINS ITS DAMAGE REVIEW The U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency announced on Sunday that it has begun its damage review of states affected by the hurricane that left at least 11 people dead. "We are starting assessments in North Carolina," FEMA administrator Craig Fugate said. Many of the actions governors must take to mitigate the impact of the storm can be expensive, though he said an emergency declaration "helps offset the costs with 75 percent funding from the federal government." He later told a briefing that there are "no dollar figures, not at this point" and that it would take the federal government several days to begin creating estimates. The recession hit states' budgets hard, leaving them fewer funds to respond to emergencies and in fiscal 2010, the latest year data is available, the median budget for crisis response fell to $3.3 million from $3.41 million the year before, according to the National Emergency Management Association. North Carolina, for example, pulled money from its disaster relief funds and other reserves to patch a budget this fiscal year. To save money last year, New York consolidated its homeland security, emergency management, fire control and infrastructure offices. And New Jersey has implemented spending cuts of 10 percent and cut aid to local governments. Then there are the insured losses to consider. Catastrophe modeling company EQECAT estimated Irene caused between $200 million and $400 million in insured losses in North and South Carolina, with most of them in North Carolina. Combined with its estimate of $300 million to $600 million in insured losses in the Caribbean, EQECAT puts Irene's total damage so far at $500 million to $1 billion. EQECAT expects to release loss estimates for more states on Monday. (Reporting by Ben Berkowitz, Chip Barnett and Joan Gralla in New York and David Morgan and Lisa Lambert in Washington; Writing by Chip Barnett and Christopher Sanders; Editing by Marguerita Choy)
- Yahoo Life
The "Truth Be Told" actress previously spoke to Yahoo Life about taking time for self care, which can include just a few quiet moments.
A 10-year-old was forced to cross state lines for an abortion after Ohio's ban went into place. The Indiana doctor who helped her will soon be unable to assist others.
As Ohio outlawed abortions after six weeks, doctors in neighboring Indiana described an influx of patients from out-of-state seeking the procedure, including a pregnant 10-year-old.
- The Telegraph
Sergio Garcia's graduation to pariah-in-chief on the DP World Tour is complete after an astonishing outburst in the locker room in the wake of being fined and banned from the Scottish Open for appearing on the Saudi rebel circuit.
- CBS News
One of the girl's family members jumped in the water and beat the shark off of her until she was free, officials said.
- Country Living
Prince Harry's former nanny, Tiggy Pettifer, and childhood mentor, Mark Dyer, are reportedly baby Archie's godparents—find out more here.
A judge in Brazil ordered a 10-year-old rape victim to be removed from her family and sent to a shelter to prevent her from having an abortion
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- NBC Sports Boston
The Nets are, understandably, asking for a massive return package in any Kevin Durant trade during the 2022 NBA offseason.
Former Trump White House senior counselor Kellyanne Conway says Ron DeSantis has done a 'remarkable' job as Florida's governor
Conway told David Axelrod that DeSantis "has been really smart to focus on his own reelection" and "not get too involved with too many other races."
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"I was deeply unhappy, barely containing secrets that would soon devastate me emotionally and send me to the brink of suicide at the height of my fame."
- Associated Press
Three law enforcement officers were killed and five wounded in eastern Kentucky when a man with a rifle opened fire on police attempting to serve a warrant, authorities said. Police took 49-year-old Lance Storz into custody late Thursday night after an hourslong standoff at a home in Allen, a small town in the hills of Appalachia. The responding officers encountered “pure hell” when they arrived on the scene, Floyd County Sheriff John Hunt told reporters Friday afternoon.
Nearly 850,000 people signed a petition demanding that Justice Clarence Thomas should be booted from the Supreme Court following Roe v. Wade ruling
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- Fox News
January 6 committee's Kinzinger: Secret Service agent who may dispute Hutchinson claim 'likes to lie'
Rep. Adam Kinzinger, a member of the Jan. 6 committee, said a Secret Service agent who may testify against Cassidy Hutchinson's retelling of events "likes to lie."
- ABC News
White House aide Cassidy Hutchinson's dramatic testimony this week has provided not only a new account of the actions of then-President Donald Trump and chief of staff Mark Meadows before and on Jan. 6, 2021, but it's also raised questions about where the House select committee's investigation will go next, including concerning Trump's potential legal liability. In a nearly two-hour hearing Tuesday, Hutchinson painted a picture of Trump, who, after speaking at his "Save America" rally on the Ellipse, insisted on being taken to the Capitol as Congress met to certify electoral votes, demanding to join his supporters, she said, despite having been told some were armed with weapons.
- AZCentral | The Arizona Republic
In a Republican gubernatorial debate full of cringe-worthy moments, their answers on whether the 2020 election was stolen were the creepiest of all.
- Ukrayinska Pravda
ROMAN PETRENKO - SATURDAY, 2 JULY 2022, 09:46 Ukrainian artillery units destroyed a Russian Pantry-1S anti-aircraft missile system worth $15 million with one direct hit. Pivnich (North) Operational Command shared footage of the operation.
- The Holland Sentinel
The victims’ families said they hold the owners and the park accountable, not the dog.
- The Columbus Dispatch
After the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade, it's left some in Ohio to travel outside the state for an abortion. Among them is a 10-year-old girl.