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This Hour: Latest Massachusetts news, sports, business and entertainment

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New arrest linked to gun used after Boston attacks

BOSTON (AP) - A man believed to have provided the gun used by Boston Marathon bombing suspects to kill a college police officer has been arrested on drug and weapon charges.

Stephen Silva made an initial appearance in federal court Tuesday on charges related to heroin trafficking and possession of a handgun with an obliterated serial number.

Two people with knowledge of the investigation say the gun is the one that was used to kill Massachusetts Institute of Technology police officer Sean Collier during the manhunt for bombing suspects Dzhokhar (joh-HAHR') and Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

The people spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the investigation.

Silva is a friend of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev who graduated from Cambridge Rindge and Latin School with him in 2011.

An attorney for Silva, Jonathan Shapiro, said Tuesday evening that he received the case only a few hours earlier and was not in a position to comment.


State health officials reviewing court rulings

BOSTON (AP) - Massachusetts health officials say a pair of seemingly contradictory federal appeals court rulings on a key element of President Barack Obama's health care law is reinforcing their commitment to remain a state-based marketplace.

One ruling questioned subsidies that help millions of low- and middle-income people afford their premiums, concluding financial aid can be provided only in states that have their own insurance markets, or exchanges.

The second ruling found the Internal Revenue Service correctly issued regulations allowing health insurance tax credits for consumers in all 50 states.

A Massachusetts Health Connector spokesman said the agency is reviewing the decisions announced Tuesday, but will continue a dual-track approach that calls for buying software to help overhaul its troubled website while laying the groundwork for a switch to the federal health insurance market if necessary.


Gun safety activists rally at Statehouse

BOSTON (AP) - Police chiefs and gun safety activists are pressing Massachusetts lawmakers to give the chiefs discretion over issuing firearms identification cards needed to buy rifles or shotguns.

Former Boston Police Commissioner Ed Davis spoke at the Statehouse rally Tuesday and recalled an incident where a man killed an 80-year-old and then held police hostage using a shotgun after Davis had issued him an FID card.

Davis said he only learned later the man had mental health problems.

Davis said the House version of the bill, which gives police chief more discretion on issuing FID cards, could have helped him prevent the man from obtaining the gun.

The Senate version of the bill strips out that measure.

Gun rights activists, including the National Rifle Association and Massachusetts Gun Owners Action League, have praised the Senate.


Massachusetts House to debate abortion clinic bill

BOSTON (AP) - The Massachusetts House is planning to debate a bill designed to tighten security around abortion clinics.

The bill would let police disperse groups substantially impeding access to abortion clinics. After a dispersal order is issued in writing, those individuals would have to stay at least 25 feet from the clinic's entrances for up to eight hours.

The 25-foot boundary would have to be clearly marked and the new regulations must be posted.

The House is scheduled to debate the bill Wednesday. The Senate approved by the legislation last week.

The bill is a response to the recent Supreme Court ruling striking down a 2007 Massachusetts law that established protest-free 35-foot "buffer zones" around the entrances of abortion clinics.

Abortion opponents have said they would head back to court if the bill is approved.


Towns struggle with debate over immigrant services

LYNN, Mass. (AP) - The debate over unaccompanied Central American young people entering the country illegally is roiling at least one Massachusetts community.

Officials in the town of Lynn complain their schools are being overwhelmed. They even say some students are older than they say and shouldn't be in school. But students and immigrant advocates say the claims are baseless. Advocates rallied Tuesday in front of City Hall to denounce the administration.

In Michigan, a plan to house child immigrants in the town of Vassar has prompted demonstrations.

Advocates and officials say the influx is a result of the unprecedented wave of Central American children and teens entering the country illegally. The government continues to transfer them from overcrowded holding facilities to sponsors in the U.S. until their immigration proceedings can be completed.


Massachusetts Senate delays debate on PAC bill

BOSTON (AP) - The Massachusetts Senate has postponed debating a bill requiring political action committees reveal donors in a timely manner.

The Senate was scheduled to debate the bill Tuesday, but will take up the legislation Wednesday.

A version of the bill approved last month by House lawmakers would require so-called super PACs disclose their contributors within seven days of running an ad.

The Senate version would also require disclosure of contributors within seven days.

Both bills would also double the amount an individual could donate to a candidate in a calendar year from $500 to $1,000. The $500 limit was put in place 20 years ago.

The bill would also strike out the $12,500 aggregate campaign contribution limit

A 2010 Supreme Court ruling allowed outside groups like super PACs and nonprofits to take unlimited contributions.


Massachusetts congressional hopefuls rake in cash

BOSTON (AP) - Candidates in Massachusetts' most closely watched congressional contest are raking in hundreds of thousands in campaign donations as the race heads toward the September primary.

During the past three months, Republican candidate and former state Sen. Richard Tisei raised the most - nearly $424,000 - ending June with $820,000 in his campaign account.

Incumbent Democrat U.S. Rep. John Tierney collected more than $415,000, bringing his cash total as of June 30 to more than $1.2 million.

Democratic challenger and former U.S. Marine Seth Moulton raised about $414,000 in the past three months, ending June with $791,000 in his account.

Another Democrat, Marisa DeFranco, raised about $11,000 during that past quarter, ending June with $30,000 in her account.

Republicans see the 6th Congressional District as their best hope of picking up a seat in Massachusetts.


Task force collects $15.6M in unpaid wages, taxes

BOSTON (AP) - A multi-agency task force charged with recovering money lost in the underground economy has collected more than $15.6 million.

Massachusetts Labor Secretary Rachel Kaprielian said the money included unpaid wages, back taxes, unemployment insurance premiums, fines and penalties. It was collected through thousands of compliance checks and investigations in 2013.

One investigation the task force participated in focused on two farm labor camps in Western Massachusetts where workers and their families were exposed to unsafe living and toiled long hours with little pay.

In April 2013, the U.S. Department of Labor ordered the company to pay workers $305,500 in back wages and permanently banned it from exploiting future workers.

The task force was created by a 2008 law and has collected nearly $56 million from unlawful businesses by enforcing labor, licensing and tax laws.


New CEOs urge Market Basket workers to return

TEWKSBURY, Mass. (AP) - The Market Basket supermarket chain's new co-CEOs are urging protesting employees to go back to work, saying they are committed to continuing its "tradition of excellence and dedication."

Felicia Thornton and Jim Gooch said Tuesday they saw no alternative but to fire eight employees, including some protest leaders, over the weekend because those individuals "took significant actions that harmed the company."

Workers stopped some deliveries, leaving empty shelves at stores, and held rallies demanding the return of former CEO Arthur T. Demoulas. He was fired in June by a board controlled by his rival cousin, Arthur S. Demoulas, in a long-running feud over leadership of the family business.

Arthur T. Demoulas said Monday the workers shouldn't have been fired and should be reinstated.

Thornton and Gooch say they are committed to earning the trust of workers and customers.


State warns about tax telephone scam

BOSTON (AP) - State authorities are warning Massachusetts residents about a nationwide phone scam that aggressively targets taxpayers.

The state attorney's general's office says it has received several complaints about the scam.

The scammer usually claims to be from the Internal Revenue Service or another government agency, and tells the target they will be arrested because they did not pay or did not correctly file state or federal taxes.

Victims are told they must settle the debt over the phone by providing a debit or credit card number or by wiring funds, to avoid arrest. If the victim refuses, the caller becomes hostile and abusive and threatens the victim with arrest or deportation.

The Better Business Bureau says thousands of calls have been made across the country with total losses around $1 million.


GateHouse Media parent to buy Providence Journal

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - The parent company of Gatehouse Media has announced an agreement to buy The Providence Journal and related print and digital assets from A.H. Belo Corp. for $46 million in cash.

New York-based New Media Investment Group Inc. said Tuesday it expects to complete the deal for the Rhode Island newspaper in the third quarter.

New Media President Michael Reed says he's "excited to welcome the paper, its employees and the community into the growing New Media family."

A.H. Belo President Jim Moroney says he's confident New Media "will continue the great journalistic tradition" of the Journal, which it has owned for 17 years. Dallas-based Belo said in December it was for sale.

The sale announcement says the Journal was first published in 1829 and has a circulation of 72,000 daily and 96,000 on Sundays.


Liverpool practices at Fenway for friendly vs Roma

BOSTON (AP) - Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers says the team is moving on after Luis Suarez was sent Barcelona for a $130 million transfer fee.

Rodgers said on Tuesday "Liverpool is bigger than any one player."

The Uruguay national scored 82 goals in 133 Liverpool appearances. But his three years in England were overshadowed by bans for racial abuse and biting. He was suspended for four months by FIFA for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini during the World Cup. Suarez cannot join his new team in Spain until after the suspension is over.

Rodgers spoke at Fenway Park before the Reds practiced for Wednesday night's friendly against A.S. Roma. Liverpool is owned by Boston Red Sox owner John Henry, and Roma is owned by Boston Celtics minority owner Jim Pallotta.

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