AP Morning Brief and Thursday's Forecast

Posted: March 21, 2013


WINCHESTER WEATHER: A chilly start and it won't get much warmer with a high of only 36 on a day where the average high is 62. Mostly cloudy today. Becomes partly cloudy overnight with a low of 25. Partly cloudy and a little warmer for Friday with highs closer to 45.

Morning News Briefs from the Associated Press

Rockets hit Israel as Obama meets Palestinians
RAMALLAH, West Bank (AP) — U.S. President Barack Obama is meeting Palestinian officials on the second day of his Mideast tour to emphasize the importance of reaching an Israeli-Palestinian peace deal, a message underscored Thursday when Palestinian militants in Gaza launched rockets into southern Israel. After a visit to Israel's national museum — where he inspected the Dead Sea Scrolls, which highlight the Jewish people's ancient connection to the land that is now Israel — Obama headed to the West Bank to tell the Palestinians that the creation of a Palestinian state remains a priority for his administration.

Cyprus has 4 days to come up with new plan
NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Cyprus has four days to agree on a new plan to raise funds to avoid bankruptcy after the European Central Bank warned that it would pull the plug on the country's banks at the start of next week if no bailout deal is agreed. Facing the ultimatum, the Cypriot government was trying Thursday to drum up support for a new proposal that will please lawmakers in Parliament as well as the country's potential international creditors.

House on track to pass budget plan with deep cuts
WASHINGTON (AP) — A familiar budget plan to sharply cut safety-net programs for the poor and clamp down on domestic agencies performing the nuts-and-bolts programs of the government is cruising to passage in the tea party-flavored House. The Republican measure is advancing to the finish line in the House as the Senate starts a lengthy slog toward passage of a rival budget measure. It takes a sharply different view, restoring automatic cuts to agency budgets and increasing taxes by $1 trillion over the coming decade.

Survey: Low-wage workers missing out on training
WASHINGTON (AP) — As they struggle to get ahead, many low-wage workers are not taking advantage of job training or educational programs that could help them make the leap to better-paying jobs. They are often skeptical about whether such programs are even worth the trouble, a new survey shows. In many cases, workers in low-wage positions are not using the training programs their employers offer because they don't even know they exist, the two-part AP-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research survey of both workers and employers found. Two-thirds of employers said they offer coaching or mentoring programs and 61 percent provide on-the-job training. But only 36 percent of low-wage workers reported that their employers offer such programs.

NKorea suspected in cyberattack despite China link
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Investigators have traced a coordinated cyberattack that paralyzed tens of thousands of computers at six South Korean banks and media companies to a Chinese Internet Protocol address, but it was not yet clear who orchestrated the attack, authorities in Seoul said Thursday. The discovery did not erase suspicions that North Korea was to blame. IP addresses are unique to each computer connected to the Internet, but they can easily be manipulated by hackers operating anywhere in the world. The investigation into Wednesday's attack could take weeks.

Influential pediatricians group backs gay marriage
CHICAGO (AP) — The nation's most influential pediatrician's group has endorsed gay marriage, saying a stable relationship between parents regardless of sexual orientation contributes to a child's health and well-being. The American Academy of Pediatrics' new policy, published online Thursday, cites research showing that the parents' sexual orientation has no effect on a child's development. Kids fare just as well in gay or straight families when they are nurturing and financially and emotionally stable, the academy says.

Colo. Corrections Dept. chief shot, killed at home
MONUMENT, Colo. (AP) — In the weeks before Colorado's top prisons official was fatally shot after answering his front door, he carried out a variety of functions including requesting execution chemicals and speaking to legislators about security issues. It's unknown what role Tom Clements' position as executive director of the Colorado Department of Corrections might have played in the shooting Tuesday, but investigators said they aren't ruling out any possible motives, including whether it was random or a work-related attack.

Simon & Garfunkel song among those to be preserved
WASHINGTON (AP) — A popular tune by Simon and Garfunkel written after John F. Kennedy's assassination and Chubby Checker's 1960s dance hit "The Twist" will be among 25 recordings selected for preservation at the Library of Congress. These are just a few sounds of the 20th century being added to the National Recording Registry on Thursday for long-term preservation due to their cultural, artistic and historic importance. The library said Checker's rendition of "The Twist" became a symbol for the energy and excitement of the early 60s after "American Bandstand" host Dick Clark chose Checker to record a new version of the song.