Associated Press

Springfield Mayor Domenic Sarno has selected MGM Resorts International as the developer for a proposed casino in the state's third-largest city, rejecting a competing bid by Penn National Gaming.

Sarno announced Tuesday he had negotiated a host community agreement with MGM, which has proposed a more than $800 million resort casino on a 10-acre downtown site damaged by a June 2011 tornado.

MGM has committed to making annual payments of more than $25 million if the casino is built.

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Democratic Massachusetts Senate candidate Stephen Lynch has canceled most public events on the eve of the primary election because he is ill.

U.S. Rep. Lynch's campaign says all public events have been canceled Monday except for a scheduled rally at the Iron Workers Hall in South Boston at 7 p.m.

Lynch is facing off against fellow U.S. Rep. Edward Markey in the Democratic primary on Tuesday.

State Rep. Daniel Winslow, businessman Gabriel Gomez and former U.S. attorney Michael Sullivan are squaring off in the Republican primary.

FBI

BOSTON (AP) — A court official says the surviving suspect in the Boston Marathon bombings is facing federal charges and has made an initial court appearance in his hospital room.

FBI

WATERTOWN, Mass. (AP) — Boston Police say a 19-year-old college student wanted in the Boston Marathon bombings is in custody after a manhunt that left the city virtually paralyzed and his older brother and accomplice dead.  

Police announced via Twitter that Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (JOH'-kahr tsahr-NY'-ev) was in custody. His brother, 26-year-old Tamerlan, was killed Friday in a furious attempt to escape police.

 BOSTON (AP) — The FBI has released photos of two suspects in the Boston Marathon bombings and is asking for the public's help in identifying them.

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Authorities aren't saying whether they have a suspect in the mailing of what's believed to be poisonous ricin to Sen. Roger Wicker of Mississippi.

But a fellow senator is commenting. Missouri Sen. Claire McCaskill says the person believed to have mailed the envelope writes a lot of letters to lawmakers.

The envelope containing the suspected deadly toxin was never delivered to Sen. Wicker. It was intercepted at a Senate mail facility and will be tested again to confirm its contents.

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says the explosions at the Boston Marathon are being investigated as an act of terror, although authorities still don't know who is responsible.

BOSTON (AP) — Two explosions at the finish line of the Boston Marathon have resulted in injuries. 

NEW YORK (AP) — New York state Sen. Malcolm Smith, a New York City councilman and four other politicians are facing charges in a public corruption probe.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Federal agriculture researchers will again be doing a census of New York maple syrup production in April and May.    

The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the state ranked second to Vermont in last year's survey of producers in 10 states. Inspectors will collect information about the number of taps, yield, prices and the overall value of the maple products from New York. The results will be released in June. Copyright 2013 The Associated Press.

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's administration says it backs the state police commander who discussed the Newtown school shootings at a law enforcement seminar and won't punish him. 

The Journal Inquirer reports that Mark Ojakian, Malloy's chief of staff, called Col. Daniel Stebbins to ask how information about what he discussed at the seminar in New Orleans was published in a column in the New York Daily News earlier this month.

Anti-fracking signs
WAMC News

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A formal complaint filed with New York's lobbying board asks it to investigate whether Artists Against Fracking, a group formed by Yoko Ono and son Sean Lennon, is violating the state's lobbying law.

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo
WAMC Photo by Dave Lucas

New York has its third straight on-time budget after decades of missed deadlines.

The Assembly passed the final bills of the $135 billion spending plan just before midnight Thursday.

The budget approved by the Senate Wednesday is due Sunday, the start of the new fiscal year.

Major elements of the budget negotiated by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders includes $350 tax rebate checks for most middle class families and a new minimum wage that will rise to $9 over three years.

Flickr/Andy Arthur

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Albany Mayor Jerry Jennings says it's time National Grid reviewed the city's aging underground infrastructure, after the third incidence of exploding manhole covers downtown.

Fire officials and National Grid say an underground electrical fire sparked an explosion early Saturday that sent four manhole covers flying into the air in a downtown neighborhood. It was the third such incident in less than six months.

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York legislators will need much of this week to pass the $135 billion budget it negotiated with Gov. Andrew Cuomo.

New Haven Colony Historical Society and Adams National Historic Site

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — The Connecticut Historical Society has purchased a collection of letters written in the 1830s and 1840s by a woman describing the lives of the African captives from the slave ship Amistad.

The society paid $66,000 Tuesday for the letters written by Charlotte Cowles, whose abolitionist family took in one of the former Amistad captives.

Cowles described a captive showing her where she was burned on her shoulder with a red-hot pipe in Africa and her interactions with the leader of the captives.

popturfdotcom's photostream Flickr

BOSTON (AP) — Film companies have been awarded $44 million in Massachusetts tax credits for projects filmed in 2011, with nearly two-thirds of new spending generated by the productions going to individuals and businesses located out-of-state, including many individuals making more than $1 million.

That's a jump over the $18 million in credits in 2010.

The Department of Revenue report credited the increase on the return of multiple major feature films being made in Massachusetts.

BOSTON (AP) — Several candidates vying in the special U.S. Senate campaign in Massachusetts are working to define their positions on abortion.

U.S. Rep. Stephen Lynch, a conservative Democrat, has been trying to reconcile his stated anti-abortion position with the more nuanced stance he has taken since entering the race. Lynch has emphasized that he would not vote to make abortion illegal.

Lynch's Democratic opponent, U.S. Rep. Edward Markey, has been endorsed by two major abortion rights groups.

Burt Lum

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut's Department of Labor says the state unemployment rate fell to 8.1 percent in January.

The department says the state added 4,700 jobs in January -- a sign of considerable improvement in the state's labor market.

The agency's research director says the data shows the state's job market is continuing on a modest but positive recovery path established in 2011.

BOSTON (AP) — A state review has found no "serious wrongdoing" by former early education commissioner Sherri Killins, who participated in an internship outside of her state job.

But Education Secretary Matt Malone says some administrative procedures apparently were not followed.

Killins stepped down from her post earlier this week amid questions about whether her participation in the school superintendent training program, which required her to spend 300 hours in the town of Ware, was distracting from her ability to perform her nearly $200,000-a-year state job.

Wikimedia Commons/Aibdescalzo

Argentine Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio has been elected pope — first pontiff from the Americas. His papal name will be Francis.

HERKIMER, N.Y. (AP) — Police say they're searching an upstate New York village after exchanging fire with a man suspected of killing four people and wounding two others.

State police Superintendent Joseph D'Amico says SWAT teams and other officers were fired on from an abandoned building in Herkimer early Wednesday afternoon while looking for 64-year-old Kurt Myers.

CLIFTON PARK, N.Y. (AP) — Police say one person is dead after an upstate New York wreck involving a bus carrying a college lacrosse team from Vermont.

Transportation officials say the accident happened just before noon Tuesday on Interstate 87 in Saratoga County, about 150 miles north of New York City.

State police say a person in one of two other vehicles involved has died. Police tell local media outlets the injuries on the bus were minor.

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — The National Rifle Association is showing a stepped-up presence in Connecticut.

MANCHESTER, Conn. (AP) — Manchester police say the Manchester Community College campus has been cleared after officers searched campus buildings for several hours when a student reported seeing a man with what she believed to be a gun in his waistband.

Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — Gov. Andrew Cuomo denies he was close to approving limited hydrofracking for natural gas last month before talking with environmental lawyer Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

Cuomo says an Associated Press report citing state officials and an interview with Kennedy was wrong. State officials close to Cuomo and Kennedy had said Cuomo was near a decision last month to order limited drilling. 

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Most business economists opposed the automatic spending cuts that took effect Friday night amid the gridlock between President Obama and Congress.

But they overwhelmingly support efforts to reduce the deficit over the next 10 years.

That's according to a survey released Monday of 196 members of the National Association for Business Economics.

The survey, done from Jan. 21 to Feb. 13, gave some support to both sides in the U.S. government budget debate.

U.S. Navy / John Narewski

BOSTON (AP) — The Pentagon says New Hampshire could be facing $5.8 million in Defense Department civilian payroll cuts if automatic government spending cuts kick in March 1.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told Congress on Wednesday that if a budget deal isn't reached, he may have to shorten the workweek for the "vast majority" of the Defense Department's 800,000 civilian workers. They'd lose one day of work per week, or 20 percent of their pay, for up to 22 weeks, probably starting in late April.

Flickr / Quique Lopez

BOSTON (AP) — The Modern Lovers' "Roadrunner," an iconic 1970s ode to the joys of driving along Route 128 when it's late at night, was unlike any song of its era.

Office of Governor Andrew Cuomo

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York's licensed handgun owners can keep their information private using a new form from State Police.

The forms, available online, should be submitted at county offices where pistol owners registered.

They can exempt their information from the state Freedom of Information Law, which some newspapers have used to identify owners.

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