Monday, April 23, 2012
WINTER STORM IN NORTHEAST
It looks like Winter's not quite done with us. We've got a cold snap and strong winds expected today, but we're getting off easy. Even though everything's bloomed and blossomed-out, residents may get a foot of snow in New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia and Maryland.
TN SEES MORE TAX MONEY, GOOD ECONOMIC SIGN
There seems to be more good economic news for Tennessee... which means more jobs, more money: Tennessee had a jump in tax revenue at the end of the last fiscal year... which means we were spending more money. Economists at the University of Tennessee say the state is bouncing back from the Recession at a faster pace than many other states in the region.
HEALTH: HOW LONG WILL SOCIAL SECURITY, MEDICARE LAST?
Medicare and Social Security trustees are expected to release their annual report today projecting how long funding for the programs will last. Last year's report showed Social Security will last through 2036, then more than 20% of eligible people won't get it, and that although President Obama's Healthcare reform law should help some... Medicare part A would still last only through 2024.. then drop to paying 90% of healthcare costs.
HEALTH: STUDY: EXERCISE HELPS SMOKERS QUIT
Scientists say if you're trying to quit smoking, try some exercise. Smokers who exercise as little as 15 minutes a day are 55-percent more likely to quit, and less likely to relapse. And even if you DON'T quit smoking, daily exercise can help you live four years longer.
GAS PRICES DOWN
Don't you love to hear this? Gas prices are going back down. Average U.S. gasoline prices are down six cents over the past two weeks for their first drop since December. The average price is now $3.92 a gallon.
TCAP TESTING STARTS
Students across the state are getting ready for the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program -- or TCAP -- tests this week. What are TCAPS?
This is the first year the kids' test scores will count toward their end-of-the-year grades, and will count in teachers' evaluations.
HEALTH: TENNESSEE AMONG LEAST ACTIVE STATES, KIDS IMPROVING
You might have been able to guess this, since Tennessee is consistently among the fattest, unhealthiest states... but a new list of most and least active .... shows Tennessee has one of the lowest levels of activity in any state in America. New Hampshire, utah, Idaho, Colorado and Minnesota are most active. Mississippi, and West Virginia join us on the lazy list.
CIGARETTE BUTTS NUMBER ONE LITTER ON NASHVILLE STREETS
What's the number one litter in the country? Cigarette butts. Anti-smoking group Legacy for Health says in spite of campaigns like the "No butts" campaign in Hillsboro Village that involved putting out lots of ash cans, and decreased butts on the ground by 40%... they're still a major environmental problem, ending up on the roads and in our waterways.
CUMBERLAND PARK CLOSED AFTER CHILD INJURED
The recently opened Cumberland Park in downtown Nashville has been closed down again while inspectors do safety checks. A nine year-old boy hurt his thumb when a piece of the climbing wall came loose Friday afternoon. The sub-contractor who installed the tiles will attach fasteners to each one, and a third party company will be called in to inspect the final work. The park is closed till then. (The park opened to the public on Sunday, April 15.)
ROBIN GIBBS WAKES UP FROM COMA
Bee Gee member Robin Gibb has come OUT of a coma, after more than a week. He had pneumonia and liver failure, had been weakened by aggressive chemotherapy and two emergency operations, and doctors didn't expect the 62 year-old to recover. But now, Gibb is conscious and speaking with family. His doctors though say his prognosis is still uncertain. ... but credit his Iron Will for him even coming OUT of the coma.
DICK CLARK CREMATED; MEMORIAL PLANS NOT FINALIZED
Dick Clark, who died last week in Los Angeles, has been cremated, and his publicist says his ashes will be scattered in the Pacific Ocean. The family says it hasn't made a decision about a memorial service.
TREE PLANTING CEREMONY TODAY
Chances are good that you've been a victim of a crime, or know someone who has. Most of us have. Today there's a tree-planting ceremony honoring and remembering crime victims. The keynote speaker will be Virginia Trimble Ritter, mother of murder victim Marcia Trimble. The ceremony will be at 10:00 this morning at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. You're invited to attend, or to learn more about Crime Victims' week online. The Board of Probation and Parole www.tn.gov/bopp
NEIL DIAMOND GETS MARRIED
Singer Neil Diamond has gotten married, for the third time! He married his manager, Katie. He's 71, she's 42. Diamond kicks off a tour June 1 in Sunrise, Fla.
OUSTED 'IDOL' HOPEFUL COLTON DIXON INTENDS TO STAY IN MIDDLE TN
20 year-old Murfreesboro resident Colton Dixon was sent home from American Idol last week, and says he's coming home. Some thought he might move off to pursue his music career, but the 20-year-old says he has friends in and around Nashville who love to write, and he wants to do Christian music.
RESIDENTS NOT RECYCLING
Recycling officials hope events such as Earth Day will make us recycle more. Almost one out of three households where Nashville's free curbside recycling program is available don't make use of it.
ALAN JACKSON ESTATE UP FOR SALE
And you looking for a new home? Alan Jackson's three-point-six-acre estate is up for sale. It'll cost you about four-million dollars to move in. It's on Center Hill Lake in Smithville. Jackson says his decision to sell the family's home of more than 20 years stems from his girls getting older and he and his wife, Denise, re-evaluating their future plans after her fight with cancer last year.
FLORIDA MAN CHARGED WITH TRAYVON MARTIN MURDER OUT ON BAIL
Florida man George Zimmerman is out on bail. He's charged with second-degree murder of teenager Trayvon Martin. Zimmerman says he shot the unarmed teen in self defense.