NATIONWIDE: TSA screeners get union vote
After nearly a decade of wrangling, the Transportation Security Administration on Friday gave more than 40,000 airport screeners the right to vote on limited collective bargaining rights, strengthening their voice in work conditions but barring them from striking or negotiating over pay or security procedures. The decision - though limited - won praise from government worker unions and many TSA workers, who fought to win the same protections as other federal employees despite claims from Republican lawmakers that union demands could jeopardize national security or slow response times in a crisis.
Boost for Gulf seafood business
Sales of Gulf of Mexico seafood are getting a boost from the military after being hammered by last year's BP oil spill, which left consumers fearing the water's bounty had been tainted. Ten products including fish, shrimp, oysters, crab cakes, and packaged Cajun dishes such as jambalaya and shrimp etouffee are being promoted at 72 base commissaries along the East Coast, said Milt Ackerman, president of Military Solutions Inc., which is supplying seafood to the businesses.
NEW YORK: Rescued last month, dog dies in fire
A German shepherd who was pulled from the frigid waters of New York's Hudson River last month after falling off her owner's yacht has died in a fire. Chloe died early Friday in a fire on the same yacht at Chelsea Piers on Manhattan's West Side. The dog's owner, Mark Stoss, was treated for smoke inhalation and hypothermia. He said he tried desperately to get to the dog but was overcome by flames. "I couldn't get to her. I couldn't," a grieving Mark Stoss told the Daily News in the emergency room of Bellevue Hospital. In early January, Chloe made headlines when she fell into the river and was trapped under a dock, whimpering and paddling to stay afloat. A police scuba diver pulled her from the icy waters.
FLORIDA: Soccer player charged in brawl
A Florida high school soccer goalkeeper has been charged with a felony count of hitting an opposing player during a postgame brawl. The Suwannee County Sheriff's Office booked 18-year-old goalie Jared Andrew Hendry on a felony battery charge Friday, according to its website. He was released on bond. The Gainesville Sun reports that a dispute broke out after the Ocala Trinity Catholic team defeated Hendry's Suwannee High School team 4-2 in a playoff game Friday. An arrest report obtained by the Sun says Hendry struck an opposing player in the mouth, breaking two teeth.