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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In brief: Obama announces work projects funds

From Wire Reports

WASHINGTON – The Obama administration is announcing $170 million in grants divided among 23 work projects across the country that aim to reduce the number of long-term unemployed Americans.

Administration officials say the number of workers who are jobless for more than 26 weeks has declined, but remains at historic highs and is a lingering blemish in the economic recovery. The concern is that the longer someone is out of a job, the harder it gets to find a new one.

Labor Secretary Tom Perez and National Economic Council director Jeff Zients announced the grant awards late Tuesday. The two officials will hold a meeting with top corporate CEOs today at the White House to discuss their efforts to meet commitments earlier this year to hire more long-term unemployed workers.

Court reinstates Texas voter ID law

AUSTIN, Texas – A federal appeals court on Tuesday temporarily reinstated Texas’ tough voter ID law, which the U.S. Justice Department had condemned as the state’s latest means of suppressing minority voter turnout.

The ruling by a three-judge panel of the New Orleans-based 5th Circuit Court of Appeals allows the law to be used in the November election, despite a lower judge’s ruling that the law is unconstitutional. The 5th Circuit did not rule on the law’s merits; instead, it determined it’s too late to change the rules for the election.

The NAACP Legal Defense Fund promised a quick appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

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