Happening Today: Storm Cleanup, Trump's Taxes, Rex Tillerson, Iditarod

What to Know

  • Dangerous black ice poses a threat to travelers as the Northeast continues to dig out from Tuesday's storm
  • Secretary of State Rex Tillerson is vising Asia, where he'll find tensions are high
  • A record was set at the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race

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Dangerous Ice, Plunging Temps After Storm

Concerns about falling temperatures and icy conditions on roads and sidewalks across the Northeast followed a late-season storm that plastered the region with sleet and snow. Tuesday's powerful nor'easter paralyzed much of the region from Washington northward, but fell short of the predicted snowfall totals in New York, Boston and Philadelphia. Plunging overnight temperatures threatened to turn the snow, sleet and sloppy mix into a slippery mess, raising fears of black ice for morning motorists and slick sidewalks for pedestrians. Boston canceled school for a second day as cleanup efforts continued. 

Trump Paid $38M in Taxes in 2005

President Trump earned more than $150 million and paid $38 million in income taxes in 2005, paying a roughly 25 percent effective tax rate thanks to a tax he has since sought to eliminate, according to highly sought-after tax documents. The two 1040 pages from Trump's federal tax return, the first federal return to be seen by the public, show the then-real estate mogul also reported a business loss of $103 million that year, although the documents don't provide detail. The forms show he paid an effective tax rate of 24.5 percent, a figure well above the roughly 10 percent the average American taxpayer forks over each year, but below the 27.4 percent that taxpayers earning 1 million dollars a year average, according to data from the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation. The form was obtained by Pulitzer prize-winning journalist David Cay Johnston. 

Government: New Travel Order 'Substantially Different'

President Trump's revised travel ban is "substantially different" from the original and a judge shouldn't apply a previous restraining order to the new version, federal lawyers said in a court filing. Justice Department lawyers filed the documents in U.S. District Court, two days before the executive order is set to go into effect. Washington and several other states are trying to block the revised ban that affects six mostly Muslim nations, saying it's unconstitutional. Government lawyers say the new version removed provisions that "purportedly drew religious distinctions — erasing any doubt that national security, not religion, is the focus." Trump's revised ban applies to Somalia, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya and Yemen and temporarily shuts down the U.S. refugee program.

Secretary of State Heads to Asia 

On his first trip to Asia as top U.S. diplomat, Rex Tillerson wants to forge cooperation with Japan, South Korea and China against the nuclear threat from North Korea and demonstrate "America First" does not mean a U.S. diplomatic retreat from the volatile region. Tillerson will find shared anxiety at the North's saber-rattling but less agreement about how to deal with it, and unresolved questions about how the United States and China, the world's two largest economies, can manage growing differences.

Man Breaks Iditarod Record

Mitch Seavey became the oldest and fastest musher to win the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, in year marred by an abnormally high number of dog deaths. After bringing in his dog team off the Bering Sea ice and under the famed burled arch on Front Street in Nome Tuesday, the 57-year-old winner greeted each of his dogs and thanked them with a frozen snack. He later posed with his two lead dogs, Pilot and Crisp. Seavey set a time record of eight days, three hours, 40 minutes and 13 seconds, the Iditarod said. That shaved several hours off the record his son set last year: eight days, 11 hours, 20 minutes and 16 seconds.

Loud Sounds May Be More Harmful Than We Thought

Scientists have been finding evidence that loud noise — from rock concerts, leaf blowers, power tools and the like — damages our hearing in a previously unsuspected way. It may not be immediately noticeable, and it does not show up in standard hearing tests. But over time, a Harvard researcher says it can rob our ability to understand conversation in a noisy setting. It may also help explain why people have more trouble doing that as they age.

Misusing Dogs Causes Harm: Advocates

There are many benefits to service and therapy dogs for those who really need them, but it becomes a problem when people start abusing the system. It's really easy to buy a service vest and throw it on your dog, it's also illegal. The President of BioScent K9 says misusing any of the four types of support dogs hurts those who need one.

Ben Affleck Says He's Finished Alcohol Treatment

Ben Affleck says he has recently completed treatment for alcohol addiction. The actor and director said in a Facebook post that it's the first of many steps toward a positive recovery. He added that he wants to be the best father he can and show his kids there's no shame in getting help. He also thanked Jennifer Garner for supporting him and caring for their three kids. Affleck previously entered rehab for alcohol addiction in 2001.

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