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Atlanta's Morning News

Weekdays 4:30am - 9am

Scott Slade

Atlanta’s Morning News

(Weekdays 4:30am - 9am) Join Atlanta’s Morning News with Scott Slade weekday mornings on WSB to start your day with the news, weather and traffic you need from WSB.  

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  • Scott Slade is host of Atlanta’s Morning News, consistently one of the top-rated radio programs in metro Atlanta for over twenty years, and among the top-rated news-talk programs in the USA. The show airs weekdays, 4:30-9:00 AM, on 95.5 WSB, Atlanta’s News & Talk.

After Atlanta's Morning News with Scott Slade

  • Morgan Ward—an Assistant Professor of Marketing at Emory’s Goizueta Business School in Atlanta—has done extensive research on how people give and receive gifts. Ward tells WSB Radio’s Scott Slade that a resounding theme she has found in her research is it is sometimes better NOT to give a gift. >>LISTEN TO SCOTT SLADE’S FULL INTERVIEW WITH WARD BELOW. A few of Ward’s points include:  The wrong gift choice can do damage to your relationship with the recipient, but how do you know?  There’s a difference between giving gifts in “normal” situations, when it’s expected (i.e. the holidays and birthdays) and when the gift giving is spontaneous. In normal situations, getting something is better than getting nothing. But when it’s spontaneous, a bad gift can have a real negative impact.  Consider the resources of the gift-giver and how that might constrain the size of the gift. You might lay a foundation if that’s an issue for you this year.
  • Scott Slade pulls back the curtain to offer you a behind-the-scenes glimpse at notes he takes every day, hosting Atlanta’s Morning News: KOREA SUMMIT: Kim Jong Un sends his right-hand man to Washington. And the Wall St Journal reports the U.S. is DEFERRING launching major new sanctions... The latest signs a North Korea summit is ON. BROAD report on the economy: S&P 500 companies: corp. profits up over 24% and 78% are beating expectations.  GAS PRICES MAY HAVE PEAKED: TRIPLE A says we should catch a break soon from rising gas prices after Russia and Saudi Arabia express interest in raising oil supply. CRUDE OIL prices have dropped enough to amount to a discount of at least 10 cents at the pump in the short term.  Americans spend BILLIONS on supplements like vitamins with no real idea on whether they're getting anything for their money.  WSB NEWS ABOUT YOUR HEALTH: THE MOST COMMON VITAMIN AND MINERAL SUPPLEMENTS DO YOU NO HARM, RESEARCHERS SAY BUT THEY DON'T DO YOU MUCH GOOD EITHER. SCIENTISTS IN CANADA SAY IT SURPRISED THEM TO FIND SO FEW POSITIVE EFFECTS FROM VITAMINS C, D, MULTI-VITAMINS AND CALCIUM. THEY SHOW NO ADVANTAGE IN PREVENTING HEART ATTACK OR STROKE. FOLIC ACID AND B-VITAMINS WITH FOLIC ACID DO REGISTER A SLIGHT HEALTH BENEFIT.  Starbucks stores close at 230 PM nationwide today for diversity training.  Watching to see if the roof at Mercedes Benz stadium cranks open today; it's supposed to open for the next 10 days for final construction, including Saturday's ATL United Game.  Delta Airlines rolls out new uniforms for flight attendants and ground crews.  The president travels to Nashville to raise campaign cash for Rep. Marsha Blackburn this evening, the GOP's leading Senate hopeful in Tennessee, and headline a rally.  Tuesday, May. 29 10:30 AM Georgia Governor Nathan Deal, First Lady Sandra Deal, and Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning Commissioner Amy Jacobs hold a news conference reminding parents, caregivers, and the public about the dangers of leaving children unattended in vehicles (LOOK AGAIN campaign)  I wonder if this will come up THE VIEW on Channel 2 this morning? You know John McCain's daughter Meghan is one of the hosts. Comes out last night during the premiere of the new HBO Doc. JOHN MCCAIN FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS she had a screaming match with the senator just days after his brain cancer surgery to prevent him from flying back to Washington to vote on the GOP attempt to repeal Obamacare. He told her to stand down, snapping at her that 'IT's My Life and it's my choice.
  • Scott Slade pulls back the curtain to offer you a behind-the-scenes glimpse at notes he takes every day, hosting Atlanta’s Morning News: WED on AMN Primary election results and analysis - who's moving ahead in the race for GOV  The White House meeting over the upcoming North Korea summit  The rain that's coming between now and Mem Day - who could see some flooding. Kirk Mellish's blog - 4-5 inches of rain between now and Sunday?  How Clark Howard says you can save hundreds on hearing aids  Why the CDC says ATLANTANS are maxing out the STRESS charts  The decision on whether a former DK cop will face a murder trial  Clark Howard's travel bargains Thursday morning (Kilauea volcano is still erupting): Are we going to hear from Clark Howard on whether Hawaii is on sale? Are you tempted? Gotta admit, I wouldn't mind seeing one of the natural wonders of the world. There hasn't been excitement for a play coming to ATL like this since PHANTOM's 1st run back in the 1990's... Hamilton!  AJC entertainment writer Melissa Ruggieri even has a public service BLOG this morning on common courtesy in the theater: turn off your phone, be on time, don't crawl over a row of people to go get a glass of wine (please wait til intermission). And for all that is Lin Manuel Holy, don't sing along with the songs!!!! The guy who paid 500 bucks for the seat next to you came to hear the cast do it... ok?  The 32 NFL owners are in ATL for meetings today ... including more changes in kickoffs and how to handle Natl Anthem protests and sports gambling...asking Congress to set clear rules.  PRIMARY ELECTION DAY ... over 400 races statewide, led by primaries for GA Governor.  Gwinnett and Cobb schools dismiss for the summer tomorrow; Atlanta, and DeKalb on Friday.  APS Super. Meria Carstarphen tells Chan 2's Audrey Washington that they'll be holding ACTIVE SHOOTER drills this fall.
  • Scott Slade pulls back the curtain to offer you a behind-the-scenes glimpse at notes he takes every day, hosting Atlanta’s Morning News: Today is first week day for the new STARBUCKS policy: 'Any customer is welcome to use Starbucks spaces, including our restrooms, cafes and patios, regardless of whether they make a purchase.' If this is their plan to weed out paying customers, it might just work.  Rudy Giuliani says Special Counsel Robert Mueller's people tell him the Russia obstruction probe will wrap up by September IF the president agrees to an interview this summer.  Developments from the Santa Fe High School shooting Friday -- Former Obama Education Secretary Arne Duncan is calling for parents to BOYCOTT SCHOOLS until elected officials pass stricter gun control laws.  Singer Kelly Clarkson on the Billboard Music Awards last night with a tribute to the Santa Fe Texas high school shooting victims said moments of silence aren't working, it's time for action.  Coming up Tuesday on AMN:  Biggest rain chance days this week in Kirk Mellish's 5 DAY Forecast  South Korean President's meeting with Pres. Trump - will he get an earful for overselling NK willingness to negotiate?  Is GA Country Crooner Caleb Lee Hutchinson the new American Idol The Braves in Philadelphia playing the 2nd place Phillies  Early turnout on primary election day  Clark Howard's warning about thieves hacking credit cards with embedded chips  CDC: based on internet searches, Atlanta's ranking for stress.  TODAY  Pres. Trump says he will officially ask for formal investigation into whether the FBI had an informant inside his campaign in 2016.  Immunity hearing today for former DK officer Robert Olsen for the shooting death of an unarmed veteran; if he is not granted immunity, jury selection begins in his felony murder trial.  Atlanta City Council expected to vote TODAY on whether to spend up to $130 for backup generators at Hartsfield/Jackson International Airport. A resolution would call for the city to enter in to a contract with GA Power to install enough emergency capacity to supply 100% of the power needed to run the concourses normally...about 65 megawatts. (It could take more than two years to finish the generator project if and when it's greenlighted.)  Final day of campaigning before the GA Primary tomorrow. The candidates' biggest opponent may be voter apathy.
  • Scott Slade pulls back the curtain to offer you a behind-the-scenes glimpse at notes he takes every day, hosting Atlanta’s Morning News: Make a point to listen TOMORROW on AMN: Kirk Mellish's exclusive LONG-RANGE Summer Outlook at 620, 720 and 820 AM. Police tell the AJC, 7 of the 18 Holstein/Fresian dairy cattle (you may know them as Chick-fil-A cows) in the I-75 truck crash in North Cobb this morning did not survive. These cows were not on their way on vacation, but I'm impressed with their humane treatment by authorities.  CRIME ALERT for Morning Drive Muggings:  ATL police are mobilizing to STOP a string of car-jackings and pedestrian robberies that all occurred in a TIGHT radius including midtown and South Buckhead between the hours of 5AM and 7AM THIS WEEK.  CDC says it's now safe to eat romaine lettuce again. Tainted lettuce from AZ has aged out of the supply chain.  US House expected to continue debate on Farm Bill 12:00 PM today. Important: agriculture is GA's #1 industry worth nearly $75 billion a year. Some help for GA blueberry farmers? GA Dept. of AG says this year's blueberry crop is likely to be hit as hard as last years, around 60% off with an impact that could approach $400 million.  ON TAP TODAY  US Senate vote on CIA Dir. Nominee Gina Haspel.  Morning news conference over the future of a City of Eagles Landing.  The Cobb Development Authority meets with the Cobb School Board to talk about how big TAX INCENTIVES should be to draw several hundred high tech jobs to the Suntrust Park corridor.  THE huge new OPEN-AIR CLUB ON THE ROOFTOP OF THE FOX THEATER OPENS FOR BUSINESS TONIGHT to patrons, to the public on Saturday night ('Live From Here' with Chris Thile at the Fox Saturday). ABC: President Donald Trump's attorney Rudy Giuliani is urging special counsel Robert Mueller's team to wrap up its investigation on the eve of the probe's one-year anniversary. Giuliani tells Fox News Channel's Laura Ingraham that Mueller 'has all the facts to make a decision.' Giuliani says Mueller has 'gotten 1.4 million documents, he's interviewed 28 witnesses. And he has nothing, which is why he wants to bring the president into an interview.' He says, 'We've tortured this president enough.'  I keep hearing Clarkston, Decatur and Athens being referred to as 'Sanctuary Cities.' But wait a minute ... the GA Legislature passed a law in 2009 OUTLAWING so called sanctuary cities that refuse to report immigration violations. But the national think tank Center for Immigration Studies says there's a loophole... the GA law refers to CITIES...and Dekalb and Clayton Counties are sanctuary COMMUNITIES.

Atlanta's Morning News Anchors

Local News

  • On Tuesday, the Justice Department closed investigations into stock trading by Sens. Dianne Feinstein of California, Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma and Kelly Loeffler of Georgia. Following Tuesday’s news, Sen. Loeffler joined Atlanta’s Morning News and spoke with host Scott Slade about the investigation. >>Listen to the full interview below. The Associated Press reports that the senators came under scrutiny for transactions made in the weeks before the coronavirus sent markets downhill. >>Read more from The AP here.
  • With doubts surrounding if the Republican National Convention can happen in North Carolina, Gov. Brian Kemp has offered Georgia as an alternative site. “With world-class facilities, restaurants, hotels, and workforce, Georgia would be honored to safely host the Republican National Convention. We hope you will consider the Peach State, @realDonaldTrump,” the governor tweeted Tuesday morning. Right now, the RNC is scheduled to be held in Charlotte Aug. 24-27.  But President Donald Trump tweeted the party “will be reluctantly forced” to find another site if Gov. Roy Cooper didn’t provide immediate answers about allowing full attendance.  North Carolina is currently in Stage 2 of its reopening phase. “State health officials are working with the RNC and will review its plan as they make decisions about how to hold the convention in Charlotte. North Carolina is relying on data and science to protect our state’s public health and safety,” he said. While he initially criticized the decision, Trump and his administration have praised Gov. Kemp and Georgia’s reopening in the past few weeks.  Vice President Mike Pence toured Georgia on Friday and took part in a roundtable with restaurant executives.  “Georgia is going back to work and President Trump and I are absolutely determined to work with every state in the country to safely and responsibly reopen America again,” Pence told Channel 2′s Richard Elliot. “We’re going to see the American people through this, but Richard, we’re getting through this and Georgia is leading the way back to putting America back to work.'  WSB′s sister station WSOC-TV in Charlotte contributed to this report.
  • Sometimes we happen upon a smattering of traffic takes, oddities, news items, and trends that each deserve coverage. But with this column only dropping once per week, the sands of time move faster than relevancy. So here are a few of those observations from the Atlanta roadways: Traffic is very unpredictable now. Even AAA has thrown in the towel in trying to predict how the commuting cookie was going to crumble for the Memorial Day weekend. AAA said in their annual pre-Memorial Day travel release that 2019 saw 43 million Americans travel that weekend, the second-most ever. The lowest number the travel and road safety organization ever measured was 31 million in recession-weary 2009. They anticipate this year’s start of summer to potentially be lower than 11 years ago, but AAA simply could not predict a specific number. And that is because traffic has not really assumed any pattern just yet. Weekday mornings are still very light. Afternoons are moderately busy, though with barely even a hint of the pre-corona gridlock. And there seem to be increasing amounts of people out both running errands and attending outings. Several travel outlets, including AAA, have seen their bookings slightly rise. But that increase in interest still doesn’t raise potential travel numbers to anywhere close to what they were. Combine a sudden downward shock to the economy with the cautiousness surrounding COVID-19 and one isn’t likely to expect routinely bad traffic or busy airports any time soon. But, as we have mentioned in recent past Gridlock Guy columns, there are enough vehicles out on the roads to send a commute south in an instant. Crashes are causing sizable delays again, and copious construction work is doing the same. The expectation of a delay-free ride should be higher than back in early March, but it isn’t guaranteed. Arm yourself with the Triple Team Traffic Alerts App and our live reports on 95.5 WSB; both are still necessary. By the way, Memorial Day weekend is the kick off of AAA’s 100-day summer campaign for safe teen driving, a period that normally is the deadliest for young drivers. With an increased amount of free time and even more unpredictable conditions these days, this campaign comes into a greater focus and should be top-of-mind for all of us. Unpredictability is on display with several major wrecks. Devastating crashes have always been a part of the Atlanta traffic menu. But the disparity in speeds between the wayward daredevils and and those within a standard deviation of the speed limit seems to be making these gnarly collisions more common. One on I-285/eastbound (Outer Loop) at Riverdale Road last Wednesday morning shut it down for several hours and caused extreme delays. An out-of-control red sedan sideswiped a van and then veered into oncoming traffic, where it was hit by a big rig and several other vehicles. The sedan’s driver died. On the evening before, a couple of vehicles collided, sending a sedan sideways and perpendicular into where a cement median wall began. The wall speared the passenger side of the car, killing the passenger. The Georgia State Patrol and HERO Units shut down I-75/85/southbound in the curve just south of I-20 (Exit 247)  to investigate this horrible wreck. Rain had just begun to fall when the chaos ensued, further highlighting the importance of lowering speeds and lessening distractions. These are just two examples of how reckless driving and sudden changes in conditions can bring calamity. There seems to be at least one epic crash of this kind per day now, causing intense traffic delays and radically shifting the lives of those involved. Now is the time to start taking driving seriously again. Delays more than itsy bitsy after a swimsuit spill. You read that correctly. A bit of commuting strangeness and ephemera shaded the commute on Friday, May 15. WSB Triple Team Traffic’s Mike Shields was the first to notice a debris field on I-285/sb (Inner Loop) near E. Ponce de Leon Avenue (Exit 40) in Clarkston. One of our Traffic Troopers called us hands-free as they passed this by and told Shields that someone had lost a load of … neon bikinis. And there were quite a few sets of two-pieces, maybe several dozen, scattered in the two right lanes of four total on I-285/southbound in that stretch of DeKalb County. The HERO operators did a great job of disrobing I-285 quickly and all lanes opened just after 3 p.m. I-285/southbound backed up several miles quite quickly, again evidencing how many are taking back to the roads. There is no word if the owner ever reunited with their precious lost cargo. Doug Turnbull, the PM drive Skycopter anchor for Triple Team Traffic on 95.5 WSB, is the Gridlock Guy. He also writes a traffic blog and hosts a podcast with Smilin’ Mark McKay on wsbradio.com. Contact him at Doug.Turnbull@cmg.com.
  • After more than 50 years in business in the same Atlanta shopping center, Joe and Hattie Jordan thought the pandemic would kill their shoe repair business. Atlantans and others weren’t about to let that happen. After a story about the elderly couple appeared in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, customers and strangers appeared in the shop with shoes to be repaired and money to donate. Other contributions arrived by mail from as far away as California. Sometimes the goodwill came in $20 at a time. Sometimes $100. And once, $10,000. Joe Jordan thinks that donor, whose mother has been a customer, doesn’t want his name publicized. So far, Joe, who is 82, and Hattie, who is 75, have received about $20,000, Joe Jordan said this week. “It’s overwhelming,” he said. “I had no idea people would respond that way.” “I was pretty sure we weren’t going to make it,” he added later. The Jordans closed their shop for weeks during the coronavirus pandemic, exhausting minuscule savings. When they first reopened Cato Shoe Repair, they had just two customers in three days. Rent and bills backed up. Many small business owners around metro Atlanta and the nation face similar strains. Three GoFundMe campaigns are also under way, set up by people who say they were touched by the Jordans’ situation. Those have raised another $4,000 and counting. Miriam Strickman Levitas, a Buckhead designer, organized one of the funds after reading the recent AJC story. She and her family have been customers of the Jordans for decades. >>More on this story from The Atlanta Journal Constitution.
  • As the Memorial Day weekend drew to a close on Monday afternoon, Danny Biebricher said “busy” didn’t even begin to capture what the last three days had been like at the marina he manages on Lake Allatoona. Biebricher said he had never seen so many families head to the lake for the holiday in the 16 years he’s been at Little River Marina, either as a tenant with a boat or now as the manager. But he said the pent-up demand to get outdoors in the age of the coronavirus was evident. “There’s no Saturday sports for a lot of the families, there’s no Sunday church for a lot of the families. There’s no Whitewater, no Six Flags, there are limited options at the beach,” he said. “Most of these families just need something to do, so they’re all coming to their boat.” Across metro Atlanta, the desire to both stay safe and step out was evident in all sorts of contrasts over the holiday weekend, the first since Gov. Brian Kemp’s shelter-in-place order ended. Marinas and beaches were packed, and many city parks were busy, but most public pools were closed. Malls that had been shuttered were open on what’s usually a big shopping day, but some stores were still locked and others allowed only small groups of shoppers. Memorial Day events honoring service members who had made the ultimate sacrifice were kept tiny to stay safe, but veterans and families desperate to mark the day made their way into cemeteries to honor the dead while also social distancing. >>More on this story at AJC.com.

News

  • A Tennessee couple faces multiple charges involving the abuse of their four children after the skeletal remains of one child were found buried in their backyard over the weekend. Another child, a boy of about 15 years, was found confined to the home’s basement, where authorities believe he had been kept for years as punishment for taking food from the pantry and refrigerator, according to court documents obtained by the Knoxville News Sentinel. Michael Anthony Gray Sr., 63, of Ten Mile, is charged with abuse of a corpse, two counts of especially aggravated kidnapping, two counts of aggravated child abuse and three counts of aggravated child neglect, according to Russell Johnson, district attorney general for the Ninth Judicial District. Gray’s wife, Shirley Ann Gray, 60, faces all the same charges. Each of the defendants is being held in the Roane County Jail in lieu of $500,000 bond. The kidnapping and child abuse charges are related to two of the children and the child neglect charges are in connection with those two children, as well as a third child, Johnson said Tuesday outside the courthouse. The abuse of a corpse charge stems from the discovery early Saturday morning of bones believed to belong to the couple’s fourth child, a daughter. Her remains were found in a barn behind the family’s rural home. “Obviously, that begs the question about additional charges relative to how that child died, and who’s responsible, and how, for that child’s death,” Johnson said. Listen to prosecutor Russell Johnson speak about the case below, courtesy of WATE.  Johnson said investigators are awaiting tests on the girl’s remains to determine how and when she died. Authorities said none of the children are the Grays’ biological children, but they are the children’s legal guardians. Their exact relationship is not clear. Editor’s note: The following story contains graphic details of child abuse.  The News Sentinel reported that authorities first became aware of the situation Friday when passersby spotted one of the couple’s children walking alone on a road near the family’s home. When Roane County Sheriff’s Office investigators and Department of Children’s Services caseworkers went to the home to investigate further, they found the 15-year-old boy locked inside the basement. See a news report on the case by WBIR below.  The basement was partially flooded, had no electricity or running water and was filled with garbage and mold, the newspaper reported. The warrants, read aloud in court Tuesday, indicated the boy was forced to use a bucket to relieve himself. He had been confined to a room in the basement since the summer of 2016, shortly after the family moved to Tennessee from Meridian, Mississippi, according to the warrants. Investigators allege that the boy’s 10-year-old sister was also confined to the basement room in 2017 for stealing food. She was fed nothing but bread and water and died a few months later, according to the court documents. “She was buried just outside the door in a pole barn with the goats, chickens and the pigs,” the judge read in court. Michael Gray admitted to burying the girl, authorities said. Listen to a portion of Tuesday’s court hearing below, courtesy of WBIR. The arrest warrants allege that none of the children, who were reportedly home-schooled, had been to a doctor in more than six years, the News Sentinel reported. The couple admitted that all four had been diagnosed with “failure to thrive” the last time they had a checkup. The surviving children’s growth appears to have been stunted due to malnutrition. Despite Shirley Gray’s claims of home-schooling the children, their education was obviously lacking, the warrants allege. “(Two of the children) appear to have no formal education and were, in fact, amazed by what a refrigerator does when they observed one in their foster home,” the warrants say, according to the News Sentinel.
  • A roll-on product used to relieve pain has been recalled because it failed to meet child-resistant packaging rules. causing concerns about poisoning of children, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission said Wednesday in a news release. Sanvall Enterprises, based in Doral, Florida, recalled its Rapid Alivio Pain Relieving Roll-On, which was packaged in a 3-fluid ounce white plastic bottle with a white cap and a red, white and blue label, the CPSC said. 'Rapid Alivio,” “Maximum Strength Pain Relieving Liquid” and “Para Dolor Muscular” are printed on the label. The lot numbers 18032201, 18032301, 19040501, or 19052801 are printed on the bottom of the bottle, and the UPC code 605100014225 is printed on the side of the label. The product contains methyl salicylate and must be in child-resistant packaging as required by the Poison Prevention Packaging Act, the CPSC said in its release. However, the CPSC said the packaging was not child-resistant, posing a risk of poisoning if the contents are swallowed by young children. The CPSC said the recall involves 5,400 units, which were sold between August 2016 and June 2019. The products were sold at Navarro Discount Pharmacy and Walmart stores in South Florida, the CPSC said. Consumers should immediately store the roll-on in a safe location and out of reach of children and contact Sanvall Enterprises for a full refund, the CPSC said. Consumers with questions can call Sanvall Enterprises collect at 305-887-1090 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. EDT Monday through Friday. They also can email the company at SanarNaturals@Sanvall.com and in the body of the email provide a name, address, and photo of the product or online at www.Sanvall.com and click on “Recall -- Important Safety Information -- Rapid Alivio Roll-On” for more information.
  • More than 5.6 million people worldwide – including more than 1.6 million in the United States – have been infected with the new coronavirus, and the number of deaths from the outbreak continues to rise. While efforts to contain the COVID-19 outbreak continue, states have begun to shift their focus toward reopening their economies. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is tracking cases in the U.S. here. Live updates for Wednesday, May 27, continue below:  Walt Disney World aims to reopen in July, SeaWorld Orlando sets sights on June reopening Update 11:25 a.m. EDT May 27: Officials with Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando on Wednesday submitted reopening plans to officials in Orange County, Florida. Walt Disney World plans to reopen in two waves beginning July 11. Officials said they want to open their Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom theme parks first and follow the move up with the reopening July 15 of EPCOT and Hollywood Studios, WFTV reported. Officials with SeaWorld Orlando said the theme park plans to reopen to employees June 10 and then to the public on June 11, according to WFTV. 2,013 new coronavirus infections reported in the UK Update 11:05 a.m. EDT May 27: Officials in the United Kingdom reported 2,013 new coronavirus infections Wednesday morning, raising the country’s total number of infections to 267,240. Officials said that as of 5 p.m. local time Tuesday, the most recent date for which data was available, 37,460 people had died nationwide of COVID-19. 72 new cases of COVID-19 reported in DC Update 10:30 a.m. EDT May 27: Mayor Muriel Bowser of Washington D.C. said Wednesday that 72 new coronavirus infections have been reported in the area, raising the total number of cases in the area to 8,406. Bowser also announced five more people between the ages of 55 and 75 had died of COVID-19 in Washington D.C., bringing the total number of deaths in the District to 445. Wall Street opens higher on economic stimulus hopes Update 9:50 a.m. EDT May 27: Stocks opened higher Wednesday on Wall Street, led by financial stocks. Global stock markets rose after the European Union proposed more economic stimulus. European markets rose Wednesday after the EU commission proposed a new 750 billion-euro ($825 billion) package of financial aid meant to help the region’s economy recover from what is already considered the deepest recession in living memory. Benchmarks in Shanghai and Hong Kong, however, retreated after the White House said a proposed national security law might jeopardize the Chinese territory’s status as a global financial center. Fauci says he wears a face covering to protect self, others and set an example Update 9:45 a.m. EDT May 27: The nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, said Wednesday that he’s been wearing a face covering anytime he’s outside to protect himself and others and to set an example. “I do it when I’m in public for the reasons that ... I want to protect myself and protect others and also because I want to make it be a symbol for people to see that that’s the kind of thing that we should be doing,” Fauci said during an interview on CNN. Fauci noted that masks are “not 100% effective” at preventing the spread of the novel coronavirus, however, he said “It’s sort of (like showing) respect for another person and (having) that other person respect you.” “You wear a mask, they wear a mask -- you protect each other,”he said. National Women’s Soccer League to resume play in June Update 8:55 a.m. EDT May 27: Officials with the National Women’s Soccer League announced Wednesday that the 2020 NWSL Challenge Cup will begin next month, marking a return to play for the league’s nine teams. The 25-game tournament will kick off June 27 at Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman, Utah. Officials said the games will be played without spectators. “As our country begins to safely reopen and adjust to our collective new reality, and with the enthusiastic support of our players, owners, as well as our new and current commercial partners, the NWSL is thrilled to bring professional soccer back to the United States,” NWSL Commissioner Lisa Baird said in a statement. Officials said the tournament in June will be the league’s first competition since the 2019 NWSL Championship, in which the North Carolina Courage defeated the Chicago Red Stars to be named champions for the second consecutive year. Global deaths near 351K, total cases soar past 5.6M Update 7:47 a.m. EDT May 27: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus reached 350,876 early Wednesday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally. In the four months since the virus was first identified in Wuhan, China, it has infected at least 5,614,458 people worldwide. Meanwhile, 13 nations now have total infection counts higher than China’s 84,103.  The 10 nations with the highest number of infections recorded to date are as follows: • The United States has reported 1,681,418 cases, resulting in 98,929 deaths. • Brazil has recorded 391,222 cases, resulting in 24,512 deaths. • Russia has confirmed 370,680 cases, resulting in 3,968 deaths. • The United Kingdom has reported 266,599 cases, resulting in 37,130 deaths. • Spain has confirmed 236,259 cases, resulting in 27,117 deaths. • Italy has reported 230,555 cases, resulting in 32,955 deaths. • France has confirmed 182,847 cases, resulting in 28,533 deaths. • Germany has reported 181,293 cases, resulting in 8,386 deaths. • Turkey has recorded 158,762 cases, resulting in 4,397 deaths • India has recorded 151,876 cases, resulting in 4,346 deaths. Google plans to reopen some offices in July as coronavirus fears linger Update 7:29 a.m. EDT May 27: Specifics were sparse, but Google CEO Sundar Pichai told employees Tuesday that the company plans to reopen “more buildings in more cities” starting July 6, CNN reported. Employees at the unspecified locations will return, but only about 10% building occupancy will be allowed in the beginning, ramping up to 30% capacity by September, the network reported. “We’ll have rigorous health and safety measures in place to ensure social distancing and sanitization guidelines are followed, so the office will look and feel different than when you left” Pichai wrote in a blog post, adding, “Our goal is to be fair in the way we allocate time in the office, while limiting the number of people who come in, consistent with safety protocols.' New CDC guidance reveals COVID-19 antibody tests fail about half the time Update 7:02 a.m. EDT May 27: Antibody tests intended to detect if subjects have been infected previously with the novel coronavirus might provide accurate results only half the time, according to the latest U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance. According to the new intelligence, “Antibodies in some persons can be detected within the first week of illness onset,” but the results are not consistently accurate enough to base important policy decisions on their outcomes. “(Antibody) test results should not be used to make decisions about grouping persons residing in or being admitted to congregate settings, such as schools, dormitories, or correctional facilities ... (Antibody) test results should not be used to make decisions about returning persons to the workplace,” the CDC warned. Lawmakers urge suspension of Trump’s July 4 military parade amid pandemic Update 6:09 a.m. EDT May 27: Calling the scheduled event a “vanity project,” members of Congress representing the capital region petitioned the defense and interior departments Tuesday to suspend plans for U.S. President Donald Trump’s second annual July 4 military parade, The Washington Post reported. Muriel E. Bowser, mayor of the District of Columbia, is preparing to reopen portions of the nation’s capital, while both Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam and Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan have already relaxed some social distancing policies, yet stay-at-home orders remain in place in all three areas. “Given the current COVID-19 crisis, we believe such an event would needlessly risk the health and safety of thousands of Americans,' they wrote in the letter to the department chiefs. “Further, this event would come at the cost of millions of taxpayer dollars while we are facing an unprecedented economic downturn due to the pandemic.” Read the lawmakers’ complete letter to the defense and interior departments. “The American people have shown tremendous courage and spirit in the fight against this global pandemic just as our forefathers did in the fight to secure our independence, and both deserve celebration on America’s birthday this year,” White House spokesman Judd Deere wrote in an email to the Post. Worldwide coronavirus deaths top 350K Update 4:46 a.m. EDT May 27: The global death toll attributed to the novel coronavirus reached 350,752 early Wednesday, according to a Johns Hopkins University tally. The United States – with nearly 1.7 million cases, resulting in 98,929 deaths to date – remains the nation with the highest number of infections and virus-related deaths. Brazil now reports the second-highest number of cases worldwide with 391,222, while the United Kingdom’s 37,130 virus-related deaths rank as second highest globally. Trump gives NC governor 1 week to decide if RNC stays in Charlotte amid coronavirus concerns Update 3:27 a.m. EDT May 27: North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Tuesday dismissed President Donald Trump’s tweets threatening to move the Republican National Convention from Charlotte. “I’m not surprised by anything I see on Twitter,” Cooper said. “It’s OK for political conventions to be political, but pandemic response cannot be.” According to WSOC-TV, the governor said state health officials will continue to work with convention organizers to draft guidelines that will ensure the event can be conducted safely during the coronavirus pandemic. In a series of tweets Monday morning, the president threatened to pull the event out of North Carolina if Cooper doesn’t immediately sign off on allowing a full-capacity gathering in August, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Coronavirus has infected more than 62K US health care workers, CDC reports Update 2:10 a.m. EDT May 27: An estimated 62,344 health care professionals in the United States have contracted the novel coronavirus to date, resulting in at least 291 deaths, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed. The latest figures represent a nearly seven-fold increase in less than six weeks. According to CNN, the CDC last highlighted the number of cases among health care workers April 15, revealing a total of 9,282 cases at that time. US coronavirus cases approach 1.7M, deaths near 99K Update 12:40 a.m. EDT May 27: The number of novel coronavirus cases in the United States surged toward 1.7 million early Wednesday across all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, Guam and the U.S. Virgin Islands. According to a Johns Hopkins University tally, there are at least 1,681,212 confirmed U.S. cases of the virus, which have resulted in at least 98,916 deaths.  The hardest-hit states remain New York with 363,836 cases and 29,302 deaths and New Jersey with 155,764 cases and 11,194 deaths. Massachusetts, with 93,693 cases, has the third-highest number of deaths with 6,473, while Illinois has the third-highest number of cases with 113,195. Only 16 states and territories have confirmed fewer than 6,000 cases each. Five other states have now confirmed at least 52,000 novel coronavirus cases each, including: • California: 99,684 cases, resulting in 3,823 deaths • Pennsylvania: 72,778 cases, resulting in 5,163 deaths • Texas: 57,230 cases, resulting in 1,546 deaths • Michigan: 55,104 cases, resulting in 5,266 deaths • Florida: 52,255 cases, resulting in 2,259 deaths Meanwhile, Maryland, Georgia and Connecticut each has confirmed at least 41,000 cases; Virginia, Louisiana, Ohio and Indiana each has confirmed at least 32,000 cases; Colorado, North Carolina, Minnesota, Tennessee and Washington each has confirmed at least 20,000 cases, followed by Iowa with 17,703 and Arizona with 16,864; Wisconsin and Alabama each has confirmed at least 15,000 cases, followed by Rhode Island with 14,210 and Mississippi with 13,731; Nebraska and Missouri each has confirmed at least 12,000 cases, followed by South Carolina with 10,416; Kansas and Delaware each has confirmed at least 9,000 cases; Kentucky, Utah, the District of Columbia and Nevada each has confirmed at least 8,000 cases, followed by New Mexico with 7,130; Arkansas and Oklahoma each has confirmed at least 6,000 cases. Click here to see CNN’s state-by-state breakdown. The Associated Press contributed to this report.
  • Wednesday is the day that vacationers may find out the status of their travel plans as Walt Disney World and SeaWorld Orlando officials presented their reopening plans to Orange County’s Economic Recovery Task Force after COVID-19 forced the closings of the theme parks in March. Update 11:33 a.m. EDT, May 27: The Orange County Reopening Task Force has approved the plans for both SeaWorld and Walt Disney World. Next the plans go to Mayor Jerry Demings and then Gov. Ron DeSantis. Update 11:05 a.m. EDT, May 27: Walt Disney World will reopen in two waves. Magic Kingdom and Animal Kingdom will reopen on July 11. EPCOT and Hollywood Studios will open on July 15. Update 10:54 a.m. EDT, May 27: SeaWorld Orlando is looking to reopen on June 11. Employees will be required to wear face coverings as will guests ages two and up. The park will be marked in such a way to promote social distancing. Guests and employees will have to undergo temperature screenings. Original report: WFTV reported the presentation would be done virtually Wednesday morning. The presentation will include when the parks can reopen. The plans must be endorsed by Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings and approved by Gov. Ron DeSantis, WFTV reported. Last week the shopping and entertainment complex Disney Springs held its first phase of reopening with selected stores and restaurants that were shut since mid-March. Visitors are required to undergo temperature screenings, wear masks and abide by social distancing, park officials said in advance of Disney Springs reopening. Walt Disney World employs about 77,000 workers and is the biggest employer in central Florida, The Associated Press reported. Universal Orlando unveiled its plans to reopen last week, hoping to open the gates to visitors on June 5, the AP reported. Legoland Florida will reopen June 1. As for the West Coast, Disneyland, Universal Studios Hollywood, Six Flags Magic Mountain and SeaWorld San Diego, can reopen in California’s phase 3, The Orange County Register reported. Kate Folmar, California’s Health and Human Services Agency spokesperson, said they could reopen in stage 3 if the rate of the spread of the coronavirus and hospitalizations remain stable. Gov. Gavin Newsom said the third stage of reopening California could come within weeks, the Register reported.
  • An Oregon woman decided to sew some face coverings for her fellow employees. When they gave her money for them, she decided to play a Keno-8 spot ticket. Lorna Hewitt has never been so lucky. She won $126,784.70 in the Oregon Lottery game and claimed her prize Tuesday, lottery officials said in a news release. The winnings came at a good time for Hewitt, who was working part time at a grocery store in Sisters after being laid off from her job as a waitress because of the coronavirus pandemic. “I don’t play a lot, but thought I was doing something to help, maybe I would win,” Hewitt, of Sisters, told lottery officials. After taking a job at the grocery store, Hewitt said she got the idea to make masks. Her coworkers liked the idea. “They liked them so much, they started giving me some money for them,” Hewitt said. “So, I started selling them, because my boss couldn’t order any more, there was a shortage.” So, she made the masks and then made a small investment in the Keno 8-spot game. But when she won, Hewitt said she felt a little guilty. “I was making the masks with fabric I already had, and I just happen to get in at a good time,” Hewitt told lottery officials. After claiming her cash prize, Hewitt went to a fabric store in Salem to buy supplies for more masks. “My masks are popular, and I want to keep making them – and maybe some other things,” Hewitt said.
  • Tropical Storm Bertha formed off the coast of Charleston, South Carolina, early Wednesday, becoming the second named storm before the official start of this year’s Atlantic hurricane season. The storm moved inland shortly after forming. The National Hurricane Center issued a tropical storm warning for South Carolina’s coast and the storm was expected to bring heavy rainfall to North Carolina on Wednesday and Thursday. Officials said the biggest threat from Bertha will be heavy rainfall, along with tropical storm-force winds along portions of the South Carolina coast. Bertha’s maximum sustained winds are near 45 mph but it’s expected to weaken to a tropical depression after moving inland. Several counties across the Charlotte region are under a flash flood watch. North Carolina could see widespread rain by Wednesday afternoon and there will be a rip current risk along the Atlantic coast. Bertha started off as a low-pressure system and developed very quickly Wednesday morning thanks to warm ocean temperatures. Earlier this month, Tropical Storm Arthur brought rain to North Carolina, according to The Associated Press. It was the sixth straight year that a named storm has developed before June 1, Another system will keep rain falling in North Carolina on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, tapering off early Sunday morning. The rain will be on and off or scattered at times.