Extra Extra : January 2013

Iowa hospital sends $180,000 in food waste to landfill

University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics threw away 355,000 servings of food worth $181,600 last year, according to The Gazette in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. The hospital prepared roughly 3 million total servings of food in 2012, not counting patient meals. The Gazette found that the hospital's dining room serving doctors and nurses from operating rooms threw away 32 percent of its food.

ATF storefront sting led to thousands of dollars stolen and a machine gun on the streets

In an attempt to bust criminal operations in Milwaukee by purchasing drugs and guns from felons the ATF set up a storefront sting.

However, "the effort to date has not snared any major dealers or taken down a gang. Instead, it resulted in a string of mistakes and failures, including an ATF military-style machine gun landing on the streets of Milwaukee and the agency having $35,000 in merchandise stolen from its store, a Journal Sentinel investigation has found."

Another free pass for Ivan the Incorrigible

"This long-running spree of crime has led US immigration officials to try, at least three times in the past 12 years, to detain and deport Vaclavik. But each time he has challenged the effort with a lawsuit — and each time immigration has backed off and set him free," according to The Boston Globe's story.

Extra Extra Monday: Unfilled prison staffs, overfilled fire departments, nonprofit political spending and gun laws

Center for Public Integrity
Nonprofit spends big on politics despite IRS limitation
“The American Future Fund’s investment in California was part of a nationwide, political advertising spree in 2012 that exceeded $29 million, according to a Center for Public Integrity analysis of state and federal records.”

The Boston Globe
Another free pass for Ivan the Incorrigible
“This long-running spree of crime has led US immigration officials to try, at least three times in the past 12 years, to detain and deport Vaclavik. But each time he has challenged the effort with a lawsuit — and each time immigration has backed ...

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"Star" El Diario reporter's murder case remains unsolved

"Choco was the first journalist to fall victim to the turf war between the Juarez and Sinaloa cartels that engulfed the state of Chihuahua from 2007 to 2011. He was not the last. In July, the special prosecutor for crimes against journalists in Mexico testified that 67 journalists had been killed in that country since 2006. An additional 14 others have disappeared without a trace," according to the Texas Observer. "Only one person has been sentenced for any of these crimes," the story notes.

 

Yahoo, Dell arrangements reveal role of Netherlands as tax haven

Yahoo! Inc. has taken advantage of Dutch laws to quietly funnel millions of dollars to island subsidiaries, Bloomberg News reports, which has cut its worldwide tax bill. The computer maker Dell has used the law to avoid roughly $4 billion in income taxes since 2004. Bloomberg reports that the arrangements demonstrate how the Netherlands have become one of the most important tax havens for multinational companies, and that Dutch parliament is debating the fairness of the country's tax system.

Extra Extra Roundup: Pension shortfalls, gun laws, insider loans and unsolved murders

The Minneapolis Star Tribune
Murderous 'monster' acquires an arsenal

A Minnesota man who killed his mother with a firearm in 1995 and was later committed to a state mental hospital was still able to obtain a permit to purchase firearms last May, the Star Tribune’s Paul McEnroe and Glenn Howatt reported.  Dozens of other Minnesotans judged by a court to be mentally ill have also found that designation no barrier to obtaining deadly weapons. A review of state court records found case after case in which individuals deemed mentally ill in judicial proceedings later wound up in possession of ...

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Gun laws, state by state

"President Obama has indicated a move towards strengthening federal gun control measures, but the reality is that the majority of gun legislation in the US is enacted at the state level. That has brought broad variations across the country, with states taking different approaches to issues ranging from sales, permits, licensing, self-defense and carry laws." Use The Guardian's interactive app to view gun laws on a state by state basis.

A stark geographic divide in Chicago's homicide rate

Chicago's overall rise in killings hasn't been spread across the city, The New York Times reports. Most of the homicides -- which authorities told the Times are gang-against-gang shootings, happened mostly in neighborhoods west and south of the city's downtown. A map from the Times found that more than 80 percent of the city's homicides happened in only half of the city's police districts. The police district including the business district downtown reported no killings.