By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO Calif. (Reuters) - Californians paid a quarter of a billion dollars in health insurance premiums during a 15-month period ended last year that were deemed excessive by state regulators, a consumer group said Wednesday. Santa Monica-based Consumer Watchdog, which released the figures on Wednesday, is pushing Proposition 45, a ballot initiative that would give regulators the power to reject rate increases determined to be excessive. "Patients are powerless against these rate increases," said Paul Song, a physician and activist based in Los Angeles who is working to support the ballot initiative. "This system has been deleterious to our patients." Using data from the California Department of Insurance and the California Department of Managed Healthcare, the organization said that from April 1, 2012 though November 1, 2013, regulators found $250 million worth of planned insurance increases for people who buy their own individual insurance policies to be unreasonable, the group said.
By Kim Palmer CLEVELAND (Reuters) - A healthy 18-year-old Ohio high school wrestler died last month from an overdose of powdered caffeine, a county coroner said on Wednesday. Logan J. Stiner, who was a senior at a high school in LaGrange, Ohio, and a state-qualified wrestler, was found dead by his brother in late May, authorities said. Stiner had consumed at least a teaspoon of powdered caffeine before his death and tests for caffeine level were ordered after police found a bag of what turned out to be powdered caffeine at his home, Lorain County coroner Dr. Steven Evans said. Evans said Stiner had a lethal level of caffeine in his system, the highest he had ever seen.
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office rejects airline’s request to trademark slogan
Why water surges are killing people in India
By Lisa Maria Garza DALLAS (Reuters) - Facebook has removed some photographs of a Texas teenager posing with freshly killed animals she hunted during a recent safari in South Africa that had been criticized by users as inappropriate, the company said on Wednesday. Kendall Jones, 19, a cheerleader at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, set off a social media storm after she posted a series of photos of animals she killed, smiling in one picture as she hugs a lifeless leopard hanging limply from her arms. Facebook said some photos were deleted from her page because they violated its policies regarding animal images. "We remove reported content that promotes poaching of endangered species, the sale of animals for organized fight or content that includes extreme acts of animal abuse," the company said.
The U.S. government's road safety agency is accusing Chrysler of moving too slowly to fix some Jeep SUVs in a recall announced more than a year ago.
The New England Patriots don't owe "another penny" to former tight end Aaron Hernandez, who is charged in three killings, a team lawyer told a judge Wednesday.
Shrimp farmers are trying to meet the growing demand for their product, but in an environmentally responsible way.
PHOENIX (AP) — Authorities say an American Airlines flight was diverted to Phoenix because of an unruly passenger.
NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — Gov. Chris Christie vetoed a gun control bill Wednesday that would have banned ammunition magazines holding more than 10 rounds.
A Seattle police officer shot and killed a man near Beacon Hill east of I-5 last night. The shooting followed a chase by the State Patrol.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — One of the 10 victims of a weekend shooting on New Orleans' Bourbon Street died Wednesday.
A double-decker Qantas Airways flight bound for Australia sprung a leak and was forced to return to Los Angeles, airline officials have said.
NEW YORK (AP) — Two construction safety companies dispatched cooks, hairdressers, bellhops and musicians to sign off as licensed safety experts — one of them dead — on inspections at dozens of high-rise sites, authorities said Wednesday.
As noted in the earlier blog post, Russell Wilson will be revealed tonight somewhere in numbers 11-20 of the NFL Network's countdown of the Top 100 Players of 2014.
BOSTON (AP) — A jury has been selected for the obstruction trial of a friend of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (joh-HAHR' tsahr-NEYE'-ehv).
NEW YORK (AP) — Ariana Grande will perform at the MTV Video Music Awards on Aug. 24.
Five reasons why US will win World Cup - some day
DENVER (AP) — Newly unsealed court documents show the FBI thwarted a Denver woman's attempt to help a terrorist organization by arresting her before she boarded a flight in April.