“Whatever your reasons, consumers should have the power to choose their preferred method of payment,” he added. Back when Torres introduced the bill in 2018, he argued that businesses going cashless would discriminate against people with impaired access to banking services. “Restaurants that do not accept cash can pose a lot of challenges to low-income people, and communities of color that may have difficulty accessing traditional banking options and access to credit cards,” Torres said, the New York Post reported at the time. “This is a matter of equity and economic justice.” A 2015 Urban Institute study found that around one in nine households in New York City in 2013 did not have a bank account. “Nationwide, millions of Americans live on the economic margins,” the study noted, citing a 2014…
SCOTTSBORO, Ala.—At least eight people were killed early Monday in an explosive fire that consumed at least 35 vessels docked along the Tennessee River.
Scottsboro Fire Chief Gene Necklaus said all eight people known to be missing were confirmed dead, and “that number could go up, because we don’t know how many were on boats” that sank.
The fire began just after midnight and quickly consumed the dock as people were sleeping. The wooden dock went up in flames and an aluminum roof that covered many of the vessels melted and collapsed, cutting off escape routes and raining debris over the area as boaters leaped into the river.
At least seven people were sent to hospitals suffering from exposure to the flames or the frigid water.
Necklaus said about 35 boats were destroyed, some of them sinking at the dock and others floating away before going under. He said divers need to locate each one and search them individually to be sure there were no other victims.
“We woke up hearing screams and popping noises,” Mandy Durham, who was with her boyfriend in a nearby boat, told The Associated Press. “When we woke up, we could see red through the window.”
“Within 15 to 20 minutes, the whole dock was in flames,” she added. “All these boats have propane tanks and gas tanks, and that’s a lot of fire.”
The blaze destroyed the B dock, about 50 yards from the A dock where the boat of Durham’s boyfriend was moored.
“There were numerous people rescued from the water who had escaped by going into the water,” Jackson County Chief Sheriff’s Deputy Rocky Harnen told The Associated Press shortly after dawn. “We’re trying to get divers down here to search for possible victims.”
People were jumping onto a boat at the end of the dock because fire had consumed the middle portion and that was their only escape. But then the flames spread to that boat, leaving water as their only way out, Durham said.
“Water was the only place they had to go,” Durham said. “Its just extremely sad. It’s horrible.”
Reaching the victims proved challenging for rescue crews.
“The damage from the dock has fallen on top of the boats, and some of the boats have drifted off,” Harnen said.
Hours after sunrise, smoke was still rising from the remains of a wooden dock, and pieces of metal that once formed the roof were partially submerged. Police and fire boats with flashing lights were positioned near the charred remains, and a yellow floating boom was being deployed around the marina to contain spilled fuel.
Most of the boats that were destroyed had people living on them permanently, but some mainly spent weekends on them, Durham said. The park includes a boat ramp, a dock and a restaurant, and offers boat rentals, according to Jackson County’s government website.
“Everybody is just hoping to find the ones they knew on that dock. There were families there. It’s devastating,” Durham said.
By Jay Reeves
Alan Dershowitz, Harvard Law professor emeritus and member of President Donald Trump’s legal team, said Sunday that he believes House managers’ case fell short of the standard that is needed to convict President Donald Trump in the Senate’s impeachment trial. “Even if the factual allegations are true—which are highly disputed and which the defense team will show contrary evidence—but even if true, they did not allege impeachable offenses. So there can’t be a constitutionally authorized impeachment,” Dershowitz, a high-profile criminal attorney, told “Fox News Sunday.” He added that the abuse of power and obstruction of Congress charges levied against Trump are vague criteria. No president in U.S. history has been successfully removed from office, as the Senate requires a 67-vote supermajority to convict. “The conduct has to be criminal in…