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Seattle to begin charging fee on shopping bags

BY Alaric DeArment

SEATTLE Seattle’s city council approved a 20-cent charge for plastic and paper bags at retail stores in a 6-1 vote Monday. The council also voted unanimously to ban some plastic foam containers.

City officials estimate that Seattleites use 360 million paper and plastic bags each year, The Seattle Times reported.

The two votes follow bans on plastic bags that passed in San Francisco and Los Angeles.

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Rachael Ray launches high-end dog food and treats

BY Alaric DeArment

NEW YORK While she’s better known as a TV chef, Rachael Ray is launching a brand of high-end dog food and treats.

Rachael Ray Nutrish dog food comes in two flavors, Real Chicken and Veggies and Real Beef and Brown Rice. They contain no byproducts, fillers, artificial flavors or preservatives, and they provide antioxidants, omega fatty acids, calcium and other nutrients.

The treats, called Isaboo Booscotti and named after Ray’s dog, Isaboo, come in crunchy bacon and peanut butter flavors and chewy beef and bacon flavors.

Proceeds from sales of the food and treats will go to Rachael’s Rescue, Ray’s animal-rescue organization that helps at-risk animals and provides that with veterinary care and new owners.

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Minimum wage raised to $6.55 per hour

BY DSN STAFF

NEW YORK The national minimum wage increased to $6.55 per hour as of July 24, as part of the Fair Minimum Wage Act of 2007. The minimum wage had been $5.15 an hour since 1997.

The Minimum Wage act mandates a third increase, scheduled to take place on July 24, 2009, that will raise the minimum wage to $7.25 per hour. This would be the final increase under the act.

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