Noontime News is a snapshot of our RSS feeds from the noon (Eastern time) hour.

World central banks launch co-ordinated action to fight financial crisis – live

• Federal Reserve, ECB, Bank of England, the Bank of Japan, the Bank of Canada and the Swiss Central Bank act to prevent liquidity drying up in the financial system

Company Backs out of $45 Million Deal to Buy Troubled Wyoming Gas Field

A deal to sell a controversial central Wyoming natural gas field has fallen apart amidst allegations that drilling there has caused water pollution.

Texas-based Legacy Resources backed out of a $45 million deal to buy the field near Pavillion, Wyom., from EnCana last week, soon after the Environmental Protection Agency said it had detected cancer-causing benzene at 50 times the level safe for humans and other carcinogenic pollutants during its latest round of sampling.

BP’s 2009 pipeline spill may lead to criminal charges

Two years ago, a BP pipeline carrying a mix of oil, water and natural gas blew open on the North Slope, spilling what the oil company estimated was 13,500 gallons of crude.

Now that spill is being dissected in federal court to determine whether the circumstances leading up to it amount to criminal behavior by BP.

Feds to pay $2.5 million in ’01 anthrax attacks, admit no blame

WASHINGTON — While denying negligence by one of its premier bio-weapons labs, the government has agreed to pay $2.5 million to settle a wrongful death suit filed by survivors of the first fatality victim of the 2001 anthrax mail attacks, court papers revealed Tuesday.

GOP Willing To Raise Payroll Taxes On 113 Million Households To Spare 345,000 Millionaires From Tiny Surtax

Senate Democrats yesterday introduced legislation — as they’ve been promising to — that would extend a soon-to-expire payroll tax cut, and pay for it by implementing a surtax on income above $1 million. Republicans, of course, are opposing the plan, reviving their false claims that taxing the very wealthiest Americans will hit small businesses and job creators.

GOP Governors Hedge Bets On Health Insurance Exchanges

Obama administration officials have announced another round of grants to states to help build the insurance marketplaces, called “exchanges,” that will help individuals and small businesses buy health insurances beginning in 2014.

But the real news is who’s getting the $220 million. Nine of the 13 states in this round of grants are headed by GOP governors.

Seven of those GOP governors are part of the multi-state lawsuit accepted earlier this month by the Supreme Court to test the constitutionality of a key element of President Obama’s health overhaul law. The money for the grants derives from that law.

Chambliss: Gang of Six will try again to repair nation’s debt

ASHINGTON — Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., co-chairman of the “Gang of Six” — a bipartisan group of senators who proposed a debt solution months ago — said Tuesday the group has renewed its effort but now faces complex procedural challenges, a toxic election-year climate and tepid leadership support.

Gov. John Kitzhaber: Oregon death penalty fails ‘basic standards of justice’

SALEM — Twice, Gov. John Kitzhaber has found himself torn between his physician’s oath to do no harm and his governor’s oath to uphold the state constitution.

Twice, he chose to swallow his well-known revulsion to the death penalty and enact what he believed to be the will of the people, allowing the 1996 execution of Douglas F. Wright and the 1997 execution of Harry C. Moore to take place.

But 14 years later, as a third inmate volunteered for death, Kitzhaber’s personal convictions and frustration with the state’s capital punishment system won out.

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