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Turn back the clock just a couple of centuries, and to our ancestors, the alchemy of electricity would seem like magic: with the single flip of a switch, our rooms are bathed in light.

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Economic incentives like loans and tax breaks for companies have been a controversial subject in recent years. And now a new study shows Connecticut doesn’t follow national best practices in monitoring the effects of its own generosity. 

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Lawmakers will examine a proposal to raise Connecticut’s sales tax this week. The Connecticut Conference of Municipalities wants to see an increase in the sales tax from 6.35 percent currently, to 6.99 percent. The idea is that the additional revenue should be given to cities and towns so they can control a rise in property taxes. 

United Airlines announced that it will compensate all passengers who were on board United Express Flight 3411 Sunday night. That's the Chicago-to-Louisville flight in which a 69-year-old man was dragged off the plane because he didn't want to give up his seat.

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The president of the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities system is recommending tuition hikes. 

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State Rep. Vincent Candelora proposed legislation that would impose a six percent tax on medical marijuana.

A new report finds that the Republican bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act would reduce the federal deficit by $337 billion over a decade but would also leave 24 million more Americans uninsured during that same period.

We tracked the action on Capitol Hill Wednesday as two House committees — Ways and Means, and Energy and Commerce, reviewed and amended the American Health Care Act. (It's the GOP plan to replace The Affordable Care Act.) Check in with us Thursday for more on the health law overhaul, including a live Tweetchat answering questions about the overhaul proposal, #ACAchat, from 12-1 pm ET.

Ryan Caron King / WNPR

At least one of the health insurance industry's mega mergers is off for good. Aetna and Humana said Tuesday they will not appeal the judge's ruling in the recently decided anti-trust case, which denied their $34 billion tie-up. Hartford-based Aetna will now pay Humana a $1 billion break-up fee.

Environmental advocates say a planned natural gas pipeline in New England could cost ratepayers more than twice what’s currently projected. And they point to a study that says the pipeline could be unnecessary by as early as 2023.

As Republicans move to overhaul the health law, should people bother paying the penalty for not having health insurance when they file their taxes this year? Or will they be able to sign up on the exchange for 2018 after their COBRA benefits end?

Here are some answers to recent questions from readers.

I didn't have health insurance for part of last year and thought I'd get stuck paying a penalty. Now the new administration is talking about not enforcing the insurance requirement. Could I really be off the hook at tax time?

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Oh by gosh by golly, it's time of gifts for your favorite gardener. I may not be much of a singer, but I know gifts a gardener in the family might like.

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Buying local doesn't just need to be for produce. That's the message of a program trying to get consumers to think bigger about the so-called "locavore" lifestyle.

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Connecticut has a program that allows electric customers to buy renewable energy credits. But some officials want to eliminate the program, and are getting pushback from environmentalists and the state office of Consumer Counsel.

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Federal and state authorities are being urged to do more to help families in Connecticut who struggle to afford utility bills. 

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