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Olympia purchases Itron water modules

The city of Olympia will buy nearly 20,000 advanced water utility communications modules from Liberty Lake-based Itron, the company announced Tuesday.

Itron said city officials in the state capital are buying Itron’s utility-networking devices to increase operational efficiency and better manage water resources.

The 19,500 new modules will provide upgrades to 59,000 Olympia customers, covering about 26 square miles, a news release said.

Itron did not disclose the contract’s total price.

United Airlines targets May 20 for 787 flights

CHICAGO – United Airlines expects to start flying its Boeing 787s again May 20.

The 787s had been grounded because of concerns about smoldering batteries, but they have been returning to the skies. Ethiopian Airlines was first to fly a 787 again, April 27.

The first United flight will be from Houston to Chicago. A spokeswoman for United Continental Holdings Inc. said the first flights will be around the U.S. She says international flights will begin June 10.

Boeing is putting a new battery system on 50 of the 787s that have been delivered around the world. Ethiopian Airlines’ CEO said his company will seek compensation from Boeing for the grounding of its 787s.

Court upends NLRB rule on posters for unions

WASHINGTON – A federal appeals court has struck down a National Labor Relations Board rule that would have required millions of businesses to put up posters informing workers of their right to form a union.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia says the board went too far in trying to force employers to display the posters or face charges of committing an unfair labor practice.

The rule was supposed to take effect last year, but the appeals court had blocked that from happening until legal questions were resolved.