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WASHINGTON (AP) — A bipartisan senators’ group working on a $1 trillion infrastructure compromise doubled in size to 20 members Wednesday, a key threshold that gives momentum to their effort as President Joe Biden returns from his first overseas trip at a pivotal time for his big legislative priority.

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Some lawmakers are trying to stop 144 U.S. cities from losing their designations as “metropolitan areas" as the federal government updates its standards, doubling the minimum number of residents required in a city's urban core to 100,000 people.

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RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — As the coronavirus pandemic raged over the past year, Virginia prison officials released more than 2,100 inmates early to try to control the spread of the virus by reducing the prison population. That practice will end on July 1, the Department of Corrections announced Wednesday.

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DENVER (AP) — A coalition that wants to ask Colorado voters to approve higher taxes on recreational marijuana to help children make up for learning losses during the pandemic and address special needs for low-income and disadvantaged students said Wednesday it’s been endorsed by former Democratic and Republican governors.

NEW YORK (AP) — Manhattan district attorney candidate Tali Farhadian Weinstein and her husband paid no federal income taxes in four recent years because they reported negative income driven by his investment losses or used deductions to reduce their bill, ProPublica reported Wednesday.

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — A commission that reviews emergency spending requests said Wednesday that it would not approve the allocation of millions of federal dollars sought by North Dakota agencies, due to a state law that limits the panel’s spending to $50 million each two-year legislative cycle.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen assured Congress that the recent jump in inflation is being monitored very carefully by the Biden administration, but said again that any increase will prove temporary.

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BERLIN (AP) — Germany's finance minister has ordered the purchase of data on Germans with assets in Dubai as part of efforts to combat tax evasion, following similar purchases by regional authorities of data from Switzerland in the past decade.

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COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Senate’s budget plan would squash the state’s momentum toward boosting broadband access and make it harder to get more residents connected to high-speed internet in areas where the private sector isn’t stepping in, Lt. Gov. Jon Husted said.

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JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — The Alaska House late Tuesday passed a state budget that would result in a $525 dividend to residents this year and leave in doubt funding for a number of programs and infrastructure projects after it failed to garner sufficient support on a key vote.

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The effort to expand broadband internet to underserved rural areas in Wisconsin would get a $125 million boost under a provision approved Tuesday by the Republican-controlled budget committee, about $75 million less in state funding than Democratic Gov. Tony Evers proposed.

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HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut Senate on Tuesday passed legislation for the second time in about a week that legalizes the recreational use of cannabis for adults. But Gov. Ned Lamont is threatening to veto the retooled bill, arguing it opens the industry up to tens of thousands of people previously ineligible to get priority for licenses.

PHOENIX (AP) — A trial court judge on Tuesday threw out several legal challenges to a new voter approved tax on high-earning Arizonans, leaving just one additional issue raised by challengers to Proposition 208 in play while the state Supreme Court is considering whether the measure is constitutional.

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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The superintendents of Wisconsin's five largest school districts told members of the Legislature on Tuesday that they're “dismayed” that $2.3 billion in federal aid is at risk because of low funding for K-12 schools.

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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Before they wrapped up their session, Louisiana lawmakers charted the spending of nearly $1.7 billion in federal pandemic aid, creating a complex network of programs to send money to ports, water systems, tourism marketing efforts and broadband projects in underserved areas.

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LANSING, Mich. (AP) — The Michigan Senate voted unanimously Tuesday to allocate nearly $4.4 billion in federal COVID-19 aid to K-12 schools after Republican lawmakers and Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's administration reached an agreement.

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WASHINGTON (AP) — Patience running thin, Democratic leaders are laying the groundwork for a go-it-alone approach on President Joe Biden's big jobs and families infrastructure plans even as the White House continues negotiating with Republicans on a much more scaled-back $1 trillion proposal.

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice's nomination of a Republican Party operative to a public broadcasting oversight board has prompted concern about the appointee's credentials and whether the GOP governor will use his political muscle to fill multiple expired seats.

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