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Keep Federal Horse Racing Authority rules lifted for now

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A federal judge’s decision that bars a national horse racing authority from enforcing its rules in Louisiana and West Virginia was temporarily blocked Friday by a federal appeals court in New York. Orleans.

The ruling late last month by a federal judge in Monroe said the Horseracing Integrity and Safety Authority likely exceeded its limits on three rules that went into effect July 1.

The federal government had asked that the judge’s order be blocked. The 5th United States Circuit Court of Appeals said it would temporarily block the order while it considers the case.

U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty’s ruling said the authority may have overstepped its bounds when it comes to defining which horses are covered by the rules, whether investigators can confiscate the records of anyone who owns or “turns services on” a covered horse and basic state maintenance payments partly out of race purses.

Doughty’s decision came amid a lawsuit filed by the state government and racing officials in both states. It’s unclear how long Doughty’s decision block will be in effect.

More storms predicted for flood-ravaged eastern Kentucky

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) — The National Weather Service extended a flood watch through Sunday evening for areas of eastern Kentucky ravaged by high water more than a week ago and said that there was a threat of thunderstorms in the area for much of the coming week.

There is a “persistent threat of thunderstorms” through Thursday that could produce heavy rain and cause flash flooding “especially if multiple thunderstorms pass over the same area,” the Jackson Weather Service said.

Forecasts include Monday, when President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden are expected to join Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear and his wife, Britainy, at a Federal Emergency Management Agency disaster recovery center in the east from Kentucky to investigate the damage and meet with those affected.

Meanwhile, the federal government promised additional aid for flood-ravaged eastern Kentucky on Saturday. Biden authorized an increase in the level of federal funding for emergency works and FEMA added five counties to those eligible for individual aid for a total of 12.

“This is great news and will be a big help,” Beshear said in a tweet on Sunday after visiting displaced residents the day before who have been staying in state parks since the catastrophic flooding.

“These Kentuckians have been through the unimaginable. My priority is to be there for them,” he said.

At least 37 people lost their lives in flooding after 8 to 10 1/2 inches (20 to 27 centimeters) of rain fell in just 48 hours in the mountainous region of Appalachia. Flooding also affected areas just across the border in Virginia and West Virginia.

The National Weather Service said radar-based precipitation estimates suggested 14 to 16 inches of rain fell July 26-29, “historically unprecedented” totals.

More than 1,300 people were rescued in the days following the storm as teams searched boats and raked debris-clogged stream banks. Work crews were still trying to restore power and water connections as residents sought to repair their homes and lives after the floods.

Power outages were reduced to 300 on Sunday, Beshear tweeted. The death toll stood at 37, but Kentucky State Police reported at least two people were still missing.

“The devastation is enormous. We will be there for our eastern Kentucky neighbors in the weeks, months and years to come,” Beshear said.

Man arrested for hate crime in vandalized church

ANNE ARUNDEL, Md. (AP) — Maryland police have arrested a 66-year-old man on multiple hate crime charges after racist graffiti was discovered at an Anne Arundel County church.

The Capital newspaper reports that the graffiti discovered at the Kingdom Celebration Center on Wednesday followed a similar incident last month, when a racial slur was found on the church doors ahead of a food distribution one morning.

Donald Eugene Hood Jr., 66, who has no fixed address, faces three hate crime charges and a fourth charge of malicious destruction of property in the most recent incident. Police identified him after reviewing church surveillance footage, according to a department news release.

He was arrested on Friday and later released on bail, according to the news release.

Police have not determined whether he was involved in the vandalism incident last month.

“I am appalled by these acts of hate targeting Black churches in our communities,” County Executive Steuart Pittman said in a statement Wednesday.

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