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NEWS DIGEST

Number of homeless veterans declines

MANCHESTER (AP) — The departments of Housing and Urban Development and Veterans Affairs say the number of homeless veterans nationwide has declined slightly.

Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson told reporters Tuesday in New Hampshire that the number of veterans who are homeless fell by 2% between 2018 and 2019.

That follows a decline of 5% from a year earlier and is down by almost 50% from 2009.

Carson largely credits the progress to an approach started under the Obama administration. It centered on a program called the HUD-VA Supporting Housing Program, which Congress boosted funds to in 2008. It gives homeless veterans permanent housing while also providing them a case manager and clinical care services.

Names of 2 who died in accident released

MEREDITH (AP) — New Hampshire authorities released the names Tuesday of two friends who died after their boats collided on Lake Winnipesaukee.

The state police Marine Patrol said initial reports indicated that a 20-foot boat had possibly struck bottom near Bear Island on Saturday night.

First responders found the boat’s operator dead, and an injured woman. They have been identified as James Hanson, 76, and his wife, Carmella Hanson, 75, of Meredith. Carmella Hanson was reported to be in fair condition at a hospital.

The patrol found a second boat on Sunday in about 48 feet of water. Divers found a man’s body within the submerged boat, identified as Harold Lyon Jr., 84, of Meredith.

Authorities are still investigating what happened but believe the boats collided. The Laconia Daily Sun reports both men were experienced boaters who were on course to make a turn around the Bear Island Post Office dock at the same moment, according to John Hopper, a longtime summer resident there who has written a book about the island’s history.

“Part of the shock to have a boating accident like this is, it is unfathomable that it is those two,” Hopper said. “Both Jim and Hal were careful, respectful of the lake, they wouldn’t be doing anything crazy. To have two such good friends in such a circumstance, there couldn’t have been more than four or five boats on that whole end of the lake there, there’s just nobody out there.”

Steyer signs up for N.H. primary

CONCORD (AP) — Businessman Tom Steyer says the presidential race is more unsettled than it’s ever been.

Steyer, a billionaire progressive activist who was late to join the crowded Democratic field, signed up for the New Hampshire presidential primary Tuesday. He says he won’t be surprised if more candidates get in the race, and that he felt compelled to jump in because other candidates were ignoring what he sees as the key problem facing the nation: a broken government that has been taken over by corporate interests.

Steyer says other candidates are debating issues like health care, education and gun control without realizing they won’t be able to address any of them without first tackling the core problem.

He said term limits in Congress and allowing voters to make laws directly via national referendum would be a start.

Researchers tag 50 sharks off Cape Cod

BARNSTABLE, Mass. (AP) — Researchers have fitted 50 great white sharks found in Cape Cod waters this season with tracking and data-logging devices to study how the species kills seals to benefit public safety.

The Atlantic White Shark Conservancy uses two tags to study behavior — a standard acoustic tag to identify the shark and an accelerometer that records body position, speed and acceleration.

Researchers say the data is used to determine when the animal is resting, chasing prey, feeding and how much energy it is using.

State shark researcher Gregory Skomal tells the Cape Cod Times the primary focus is where and how white sharks kill seals,” which will be used to determine when and where sharks are more likely to be present.

Court rules against warrantless searches

BOSTON (AP) — A federal court in Boston has ruled that warrantless U.S. government searches of the phones and laptops of international travelers at airports and other U.S. ports of entry violate the Fourth Amendment.

Tuesday’s ruling came in a lawsuit filed by the American Civil Liberties Union and the Electronic Frontier Foundation on behalf of 11 travelers whose smartphones and laptops were searched without individualized suspicion at U.S. ports of entry.

ACLU attorney Esha Bhandari said the ruling strengthens Fourth Amendment protections of international travelers who enter the United States every year.

The ACLU describes the searches as “fishing expeditions.” They say border officers must now demonstrate individualized suspicion of contraband before they can search a traveler’s device.

The government has vigorously defended the searches as a critical tool to protect America.