Credit Card Reform
The U.S. House of Representatives approved a bill to eliminate sudden increases in interest rates and late fees for consumer credit cards.
If passed, the new measures won’t take effect for a year. However, the requirement that customers get 45 days notice before their interest rates are increased would take effect in 90 days.
Banks opposed to the legislation have warned it could reduce the amount of credit available and make it more costly to use a credit card.
President Barack Obama is expected to sign a bill into law by late May once the Senate considers its own version of this bill next week.
Source: San Francisco Chronicle
H1N1 Flu (a.k.a. Swine Flu)
As of Thursday, health officials have confirmed 16 cases of swine flu in California.
This strain of Swine flu has spread throughout the U.S. since mid-April, and has many of the same symptoms as the common flu.
The flu has caused at least 160 deaths in Mexico and was decreed an epidemic last week. However, public health authorities in San Francisco said U.S. residents should not panic. The swine flu cases in the U.S. so far have been milder than the seasonal flu.
Medication for the flu exists, but health experts urged people not to seek medical attention unless they are seriously ill. However, children should not go to school or daycare if they have any illness, not just swine flu.
Many U.S. residents are still concerned. Some schools all over the nation have shut down because some students were tested as “probably” having swine flu.
California schools Superintendent Jack O’Connell said that just four of 9,000 public schools in California have closed due to swine flu, including Highlands Elementary School and Branham High School in San Jose.
San Francisco had its first confirmed case of swine flu, a child who recently traveled to Mexico and is currently recovering from his illness. This child’s name was not announced.
The state Department of Public Health said it was also investigating 23 probable cases of the virus in the state.There is one confirmed case in San Francisco.
The confirmed cases are in five counties: seven in San Diego County, five in Imperial County, two in Marin County and one each in Sacramento and San Bernardino counties.
Sources: The Associated Press; San Francisco Chronicle; Yahoo News