The driving ban is lifted in storm ravaged Buffalo; Americans back Ukraine; and Bill Cosby’s new comedy tour. These stories and more highlight your midday rundown, aimed straight down the middle, for Thursday, Dec. 29, 2022.
Buffalo’s blizzard conditions ease
The city of Buffalo, New York is slowly cleaning up after its most deadly storm in generations blanketed the city and killed more than 30 residents.
Roads were unable to be driven on for six days, but the driving ban has been lifted on Thursday as crews work to clear several feet of snow.
“We still have a ways to go, but we have come a long way in just a couple of days. This will allow our residents to get back to work, allow them to get to supermarkets, pharmacies, and to get to medical appointments,” said Mayor Byron Brown.
With temperatures set to reach the 40’s today and 50’s tomorrow, officials are also watching for possible flood conditions in Buffalo as the snow melts away.
American support grows for Ukraine
Americans are feeling more optimistic on Ukraine’s position in the war against Russia, and feel better about President Biden’s efforts in aiding Ukraine as a result. That’s according to a new poll.
Nearly one out of three Americans now believe Ukraine is winning the war. That might seem low but that’s up from just 14% in June. In six months, support for Ukraine grew nearly 20%. Now it’s flipped, with 14% believing Russia is winning.
41% of Americans rated Biden’s handling of the Ukraine invasion as excellent or good. That’s up from 31% in June. But still a close 39% disagree with how he’s handling the war overseas.
The poll was conducted as the U.S. passed the defense bill. Which includes $45 billion of additional financial support for Ukraine.
Cosby planning comedy tour for 2023
Disgraced TV star Bill Cosby is planning a comedy tour in 2023. The 85-year-old was convicted back in 2018 of sexual assault.
After serving three years in prison, Pennsylvania’s highest court threw out his sexual assault conviction and he was released in 2021.
Cosby was convicted of drugging and violating Andrea Constand in 2004, but 60 women have accused him of sexual assault.
Now, Cosby is planning his comeback tour. He announced the news on a commercial AM radio station Wednesday. When asked if he would return to comedy in the coming year, Cosby responded “yes,” adding that he would be able to be the Bill Cosby his audience knows him to be.
Exxon sues EU over windfall levy
Exxon is suing the European Union after authorities said oil and gas companies would have to hand over a portion of what the EU considers “excess profits.” Energy prices in Europe rose sharply this year when its gas supply was restrained by Russia. With the lack of supply but high demand, companies like Exxon hiked their gas prices.
The EU imposed a windfall levy on energy companies’ high profits, demanding they hand over one-third or more of excess profits.
Exxon argues the EU proposal is a direct income tax and is asking the court to remove the windfall levy policy.
Bats survive hypothermic shock
A cold snap in Texas wasn’t just hard for people to bear. Hundreds of bats went into hypothermic shock because of the icy conditions. The good news is the Humane Society of Houston was there to nurse more than 1,500 bats back to good health.
The bats were so cold the little mammals were falling out from their roosting habitat under city bridges. They were scooped up and revived in warming incubators and given fluids needed to survive.
Now they’re being released back into their natural habitat, since temperatures in Texas are back to the 70’s.
“A lot of people think you get attached and you don’t want to release them. it’s the exact opposite. you’re attached, but you’re so happy to see them out where they’re supposed to be and free. it’s just there’s no feeling like it,” said Mary Warwick from the Houston Humane Society.
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KARAH RUCKER: AFTER A NIGHTMARE OF BLIZZARD CONDITIONS IN BUFFALO NEW YORK…RESIDENTS TRAPPED AT HOME FOR NEARLY A WEEK ARE FINALLY ABLE TO LEAVE THEIR HOMES FOR GROCERIES AND NECESSITIES.
THIS IS YOUR MIDDAY RUNDOWN. AIMED DOWN THE MIDDLE WITH STRAIGHT ARROW NEWS.
BUFFALO’S BLIZZARD CONDITIONS EASE
THE CITY OF BUFFALO, NEW YORK IS SLOWLY CLEANING UP AFTER ITS MOST DEADLY STORM IN GENERATIONS BLANKETED THE CITY AND KILLED MORE THAN 30 RESIDENTS.
ROADS WERE UNABLE TO BE DRIVEN ON FOR SIX DAYS…BUT THE DRIVING BAN HAS BEEN LIFTED TODAY AS CREWS WORK ENDLESSLY TO CLEAR SEVERAL FEET OF SNOW.
Mayor Byron Brown | (D) Buffalo: “We still have a ways to go, but we have come a long way in just a couple of days. This will allow our residents to get back to work, allow them to get to supermarkets, pharmacies, and to get to medical appointments.”
RUCKER: WITH TEMPERATURES SET TO REACH THE 40’S TODAY AND 50’S TOMORROW…
OFFICIALS ARE ALSO WATCHING FOR POSSIBLE FLOOD CONDITIONS IN BUFFALO AS THE SNOW MELTS AWAY.
AMERICAN SUPPORT GROWS FOR UKRAINE
AMERICANS ARE FEELING MORE OPTIMISTIC ON UKRAINE’S POSITION IN THE WAR AGAINST RUSSIA…AND IN-TURN FEEL BETTER ABOUT PRESIDENT BIDEN’S EFFORTS IN AIDING UKRAINE. THAT’S ACCORDING TO A NEW POLL.
NEARLY ONE OUT OF THREE AMERICANS NOW BELIEVE UKRAINE IS WINNING THE WAR.
THAT MIGHT SEEM LOW BUT THAT’S UP FROM JUST 14 PERCENT IN JUNE. IN SIX MONTHS…SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE GREW NEARLY 20 PERCENT. NOW IT’S FLIPPED….WITH 14% BELIEVING RUSSIA IS WINNING.
41 PERCENT OF AMERICANS RATED BIDEN’S HANDLING OF THE UKRAINE INVASION AS EXCELLENT OR GOOD. THAT’S UP FROM 31 PERCENT IN JUNE.
BUT STILL A CLOSE 39 PERCENT DISAGREE WITH HOW HE’S HANDLING THE WAR OVERSEAS.
THE POLL WAS CONDUCTED AS THE U.S. PASSED THE DEFENSE BILL. WHICH INCLUDES 45 BILLION DOLLARS OF ADDITIONAL FINANCIAL SUPPORT FOR UKRAINE.
COSBY PLANNING COMEDY TOUR FOR 2023
DISGRACED TV STAR BILL COSBY IS PLANNING A COMEDY TOUR IN 2023. THE 85-YEAR OLD WAS CONVICTED BACK IN 2018 OF SEXUAL ASSAULT.
AFTER SERVING THREE YEARS IN PRISON, PENNSYLVANIA’S HIGHEST COURT THREW OUT HIS SEXUAL ASSAULT CONVICTION AND HE WAS RELEASED IN 2021.
COSBY WAS CONVICTED OF DRUGGING AND VIOLATING ANDREA CONSTAND IN 2004. BUT 60 WOMEN HAVE ACCUSED HIM OF SEXUAL ASSAULT.
NOW, COSBY IS PLANNING HIS COMEBACK TOUR. HE ANNOUNCED THE NEWS ON A COMMERCIAL AM RADIO STATION WEDNESDAY. WHEN ASKED IF HE WOULD RETURN TO COMEDY IN THE COMING YEAR, COSBY RESPONDED “YES”. ADDING THAT HE WOULD BE ABLE TO BE THE BILL COSBY HIS AUDIENCE KNOWS HIM TO BE.
EXXON SUES EU OVER WINDFALL LEVY
EXXON IS SUING THE EUROPEAN UNION AFTER AUTHORITIES SAID OIL AND GAS COMPANIES WOULD HAVE TO HAND OVER A PORTION OF WHAT THE EU CONSIDERS “EXCESS PROFITS.”
ENERGY PRICES IN EUROPE ROSE SHARPLY THIS YEAR WHEN ITS GAS SUPPLY WAS RESTRAINED BY RUSSIA.
WITH THE LACK OF SUPPLY BUT HIGH DEMAND…COMPANIES LIKE EXXON HIKED THEIR GAS PRICES.
THE EU IMPOSING A “WINDFALL LEVY” ON ENERGY COMPANIES’ HIGH PROFITS…DEMANDING THEY HAND OVER ONE-THIRD OR MORE OF EXCESS PROFITS.
EXXON ARGUES THE EU PROPOSAL IS A DIRECT INCOME TAX AND IS ASKING THE COURT TO REMOVE THE WINDFALL LEVY POLICY.
BATS SURVIVE HYPOTHERMIC SHOCK
A COLD SNAP IN TEXAS WASN’T JUST HARD FOR PEOPLE TO BARE…
BUT HUNDREDS OF BATS WENT INTO HYPOTHERMIC SHOCK BECAUSE OF THE ICY CONDITIONS.
THE GOOD NEWS IS THE HUMANE SOCIETY OF HOUSTON WAS THERE TO NURSE 15 HUNDRED BATS BACK TO GOOD HEALTH.
THE BATS WERE SO COLD THE LITTLE MAMMALS WERE FALLING OUT FROM THEIR ROOSTING HABITAT UNDER CITY BRIDGES.
THEY WERE SCOOPED UP AND REVIVED IN WARMING INCUBATORS AND GIVEN FLUIDS NEEDED TO SURVIVE.
NOW THEY’RE BEING RELEASED BACK INTO THEIR NATURAL HABITAT…SINCE TEMPERATURES IN TEXAS ARE BACK TO ITS NORMAL 70’S.
Mary Warwick | Houston Humane Society: “A lot of people think you get attached and you don’t want to release them. It’s the exact opposite. You’re attached, but you’re so happy to see them out where they’re supposed to be and free. It’s just there’s no feeling like it.”