The List: Five things in the US you should be paying attention to

Category:  Opinions
Wednesday, March 20th, 2019 at 5:29 PM

Floods in the Midwest
Nebraska, Wisconsin and Iowa have each declared a state of emergency due to heavy flooding. A winter storm brought rain that combined with melting snow to overflow streams and rivers. There have been four deaths already (three in Nebraska) and farmers are anticipating over $800 million in losses, according to The Washington Post. Also planting season is approaching and there are fears the land won’t be cleared in time to plant crops.

The college admissions scandal
Last week, 50 people were charged in an alleged racketeering scheme involving college admissions. Those people include parents, coaches and administrators. Lori Loughlin (“Full House”) is one of the people charged. William “Rick” Singer, leader of the company that helped parents do this, plead guilty and agreed to cooperate with the prosecution. The group of people are accused in cases of bribing and cheating in order to get their kids into certain colleges.

Flint, Michigan  
It’s been discovered that 90 percent of Flint’s water has tested for the lowest levels of lead since the crisis began.
The water came in at 4ppb (parts per billion) in the second half of 2018 after testing at 6ppb in the first half of 2018, according to CNN. Legally, this means that Flint is acting in accordance with the lead and copper rule for tap water, however, the water may still be unsafe to drink directly. Their free water bottle program ended in 2018 as Michigan Governor Rick Snyder says the water has been returned to its normal state, according to CNN.
According to PBS, none of those set to be put on trial for the crisis have faced jail time, and seven of the 15 have plead to misdemeanors.

Oil drilling in the Everglades
A state court in Florida has said that the order allowing for Everglades drilling was “issued in error.” Previously, Kanter Real Estate planned to drill for oil in some of the land they own in the Everglades. Florida’s environmental department refused to give them permission to drill and the company then won “a series of court victories,” according to the Sun Sentinel. The First District Court of Appeal refused to rehear the case and upheld their opinion on Tuesday.

2020 Election
The election field continues to grow, as does the speculation, and those looking to be informed on politics should keep track of what is going on. See the story above for details on the newest candidates.

Erica Burkholder | voices.spectator@gmail.com

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