When the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union last month, the seaside town of Port Talbot in Wales eagerly went along with the move. Brexit was approved by some 57 percent of the town's residents.

Now some of them are wondering if they made the wrong decision.

The June 23 Brexit vote has raised questions about the fate of the troubled Port Talbot Works, Britain's largest surviving steel plant — a huge, steam-belching facility that has long been the town's biggest employer.

Solar Impulse 2 has landed in Cairo, completing the penultimate leg of its attempt to circumnavigate the globe using only the power of the sun.

The trip over the Mediterranean included a breathtaking flyover of the Pyramids. Check it out:

President Obama is challenging Americans to have an honest and open-hearted conversation about race and law enforcement. But even as he sits down at the White House with police and civil rights activists, Obama is mindful of the limits of that approach.

"I've seen how inadequate words can be in bringing about lasting change," the president said Tuesday at a memorial service for five law officers killed last week in Dallas. "I've seen how inadequate my own words have been."

Mice watching Orson Welles movies may help scientists explain human consciousness.

At least that's one premise of the Allen Brain Observatory, which launched Wednesday and lets anyone with an Internet connection study a mouse brain as it responds to visual information.

The FBI says it is giving up on the D.B. Cooper investigation, 45 years after the mysterious hijacker parachuted into the night with $200,000 in a briefcase, becoming an instant folk figure.

"Following one of the longest and most exhaustive investigations in our history," the FBI's Ayn Dietrich-Williams said in a statement, "the FBI redirected resources allocated to the D.B. Cooper case in order to focus on other investigative priorities."

This is the first in a series of essays concerning our collective future. The goal is to bring forth some of the main issues humanity faces today, as we move forward to uncertain times. In an effort to be as thorough as possible, we will consider two kinds of threats: those due to natural disasters and those that are man-made. The idea is to expose some of the dangers and possible mechanisms that have been proposed to deal with these issues. My intention is not to offer a detailed analysis for each threat — but to invite reflection and, hopefully, action.

Alabama authorities say a home burglary suspect has died after police used a stun gun on the man.  Birmingham police say he resisted officers who found him in a house wrapped in what looked like material from the air conditioner duct work.  The Lewisburg Road homeowner called police Tuesday about glass breaking and someone yelling and growling in his basement.  Police reportedly entered the dwelling and used a stun gun several times on a white suspect before handcuffing him.  Investigators say the man was "extremely irritated" throughout and didn't obey verbal commands.

It can be hard to distinguish among the men wearing grey suits and regulation haircuts on Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington. But David Margolis always brought a splash of color.

It wasn't his lovably disheveled wardrobe, or his Elvis ring, but something else: the force of his flamboyant personality. Margolis, a graduate of Harvard Law School, didn't want to fit in with the crowd. He wanted to stand out.

Montgomery Education Foundation's Brain Forest Summer Learning Academy was spotlighted Wednesday at Carver High School.  The academic-enrichment program is for rising 4th, 5th, and 6th graders in the Montgomery Public School system.  Community Program Director Dillion Nettles, says the program aims to prevent learning loss during summer months.  To find out how your child can participate in next summer's program visit Montgomery-ed.org

A police officer is free on bond after being arrested following a rash of road-sign thefts in southeast Alabama.  Brantley Police Chief Titus Averett says officer Jeremy Ray Walker of Glenwood is on paid leave following his arrest in Pike County.  The 30-year-old Walker is charged with receiving stolen property.  Lt. Troy Johnson of the Pike County Sheriff's Office says an investigation began after someone reported that Walker was selling road signs from Crenshaw County.  Investigators contacted the county engineer and learned signs had been reported stolen from several roads.

Pages

As FEMA's Sandy Cleanup Continues, Questions Arise About Long Term Help

Nov 14, 2012
Originally published on November 14, 2012 6:15 pm

Political leaders from the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast have not been shy about their intent to seek as much federal funding as possible for their storm-struck states. Damages and lost economic activity as a result of Hurricane Sandy have been estimated as high as $50 billion.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo, D-N.Y., wants $30 billion in federal assistance to help rebuild his state. This request, and others, come at a time when Congress is already consumed with reducing the deficit.

Rep. Joseph Crowley, D-N.Y., whose New York City district is among those suffering from the effects of Sandy, says what hurts New York hurts the nation.

"If New York — the region around New York in the tri-state region — turns into an economic downturn because of the effects of the storm, it will certainly affect the entire nation's economy," says Crowley. "And so I think it's in all of our interests to get the region back up and running at full throttle so that it doesn't become a drag on the rest of the country."

President Obama, who visited parts of storm-damaged New Jersey shortly after Sandy hit, is scheduled on Thursday to visit parts of New York affected by the storm.

Crowley is among those from both parties who have written to congressional leaders seeking more funding for the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which is coordinating government aid efforts. FEMA has some $7 billion now available for disaster aid. Crowley says the agency is burning through that at the rate of about $200 million to $300 million a day, much of that for short-term housing assistance.

But it's the longer-term costs that are most problematic. Cuomo says his state needs help for rebuilding housing, transportation infrastructure, even upgrading the state's electrical grid.

Some wonder, though, whether taxpayers across the nation should be on the hook for the needs of one region. Richard Sylves, a professor of disaster management at George Washington University, says it's time to look for alternative means of paying for infrastructure repairs.

"With infrastructure, you can have income streams. Bridges can charge tolls. You can have highway tolls," says Sylves. "There can be different types of use or rental fees. so it doesn't fall on the national taxpayer in Anchorage, Alaska, or Austin, Texas, or Bangor, Maine, to pay for something that is hugely concentrated in one area of the country."

If the past is any guide, there are likely to be fights in Congress over whether federal funds for rebuilding after Sandy should be offset with cuts elsewhere in the budget.

And it's far from clear how aid money should be spent. There is widespread infrastructure damage throughout the region. In New York, the city's road and subway tunnels were flooded.

Stephen Flynn, a professor at the George J. Kostas Research Institute at Northeastern University, says spending smartly is key.

"Making sure that critical components like generators are above where ... water may be coming," he says. "Can we put plugs like airbags in tunnels that we can roll out just before a storm of this size comes in place? Minimum, do we have pumps that we can quickly put in place to de-water so that we don't have a lot of extensive damage? But it really involves us looking at infrastructure through the lens of, 'What if?' "

FEMA has generally gotten high marks for its response to the storm from officials in the region. Obama, at his news conference Wednesday, says it shows that the federal government can make a difference:

"People are still going through a really tough time. The response hasn't been perfect, but it's been aggressive and strong and fast and robust, and a lot of people have been helped because of it," Obama said.

After Hurricane Katrina struck Louisiana and affected a wide swath of the Gulf Coast in 2005, the federal government spent some $120 billion rebuilding levees and infrastructure and providing housing and other needs. At this point, the tab for Sandy doesn't look quite so high, but it's clear that government leaders from the area hit by this storm are insisting on the same treatment that their counterparts received on the Gulf Coast.

Copyright 2013 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

President Obama heads to New York tomorrow to view the damage from Hurricane Sandy and the ongoing recovery efforts, and requests for federal aid are starting to come in. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo is seeking $30 billion to help rebuild his state.

But NPR's Brian Naylor reports these requests could hardly come at a worse time, with Congress and the country focused on how to cut spending.

BRIAN NAYLOR, BYLINE: Political leaders from the mid-Atlantic and Northeast have not been shy about their intent to seek as many federal dollars as possible for their storm struck states. Damages and lost economic activity as a result of the storm have been estimated as high as $50 billion.

Democratic Congressman Joseph Crowley, whose New York City district is among those suffering from the affects of Sandy, says what hurts New York, hurts the nation.

REPRESENTATIVE JOSEPH CROWLEY: If the region around New York and the tristate region turns into an economic downturn, because of the effects of the storm, it will certainly effect the entire nation's economy. And so, I think it's in all of our interests to get the region back up and running at full throttle, so that it doesn't become a drag on the rest of the country.

NAYLOR: Crowley is among those from both parties who've written to congressional leaders seeking more funding for FEMA, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which is coordinating government aid efforts.

FEMA has some $7 billion now available for disaster aid. Crowley says the agency is burning through that at the rate of some 200 to $300 million a day, much of that for short-term housing assistance. But it's the longer term costs that are most problematic. New York Governor Andrew Cuomo says his state needs help for rebuilding housing, transportation infrastructure, even upgrading the state's electrical grid.

But some wonder whether taxpayers around the nation should be on the hook for the needs of one region. Richard Sylves, a professor of disaster management at George Washington University, says its time to look for alternative means of paying for infrastructure repairs.

RICHARD SYLVES: With infrastructure you can have income streams; bridges can charge tolls. You can have highway tolls. There can be different types of use or rental fees and it doesn't fall on the national taxpayer in Anchorage, Alaska or Austin, Texas, or Bangor, Maine, to pay for something that is hugely concentrated in one area of the country.

NAYLOR: If the past is any guide, there will likely be fights in Congress over whether federal funds for rebuilding after Sandy should be offset with cuts elsewhere in the budget. And it's far from clear how aid money should be spent. There's widespread infrastructure damage throughout the region. In New York, the city's road and subway tunnels were flooded.

Stephen Flynn, a professor at the George Kostas Research Institute at Northeastern University, says spending smartly is key.

STEPHEN FLYNN: Making sure that critical components like generators are above where there may be - water may be coming. Can we put plugs like airbags in tunnels that we can roll out just before a storm of this size comes in place? Minimum, do we have pumps that we can quickly put in places to de-water so that we don't have a lot of extensive damage? But it really involves us looking at infrastructure through the lens of what-if.

NAYLOR: FEMA has generally gotten high marks for its response to the storm from officials in the region. President Obama, at his news conference today, says it shows the federal government can make a difference.

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: And people are still going through a really tough time. The response hasn't been perfect, but it's been aggressive and strong and fast and robust, and a lot of people have been helped because of it.

NAYLOR: After Katrina, the federal government spent some $120 billion rebuilding levees and infrastructure, providing housing and other needs. At this point, the tab for Sandy doesn't look quite so high. But it's clear that government leaders from the area hit by this storm are insisting on the same treatment as their counterparts received on the Gulf Coast.

Brian Naylor, NPR News, Washington. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.