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Housing Starts Have Been Singing The Blues

An uptick in hiring is leading to more optimism about the economy. But housing remains stuck in a funk. New figures on housing starts are released Thursday. Morning Edition has a musical preview in this Planet Money report.
NPR

Debt Crisis Riots Take A Toll On Greece's Aesthetics

The Greece debt crisis has forced the country to look to the eurozone for a bailout. But Greece is looking less and less like part of Europe. In the capital Athens, they are still cleaning up from the weekend riots. Even in its tourist precincts, the area is shabby and covered with graffiti.
NPR

Congress May Skip Payroll Tax Showdown This Time

Congress appears to have avoided another fight over the payroll tax reduction that has been pumping billions of dollars back into the economy. There may even be a deal ahead on jobless benefits and payments to Medicare doctors. Those issues had Congress in knots back in December.
WAMU 88.5

Obama's Budget Holds Good News For Virginia, Maryland

Lawmakers in Virginia and Maryland have found gleaned some good economic news from President Obama's 2013 budget proposal, pending Congressional approval of course.

WAMU 88.5

O'Malley Finally Unveils Plan To Increase Tax On Gas

Maryland governor Martin O'Malley formally unveiled his plan for a gas tax to fund transportation projects -- it would hit drivers for two percent extra a year for three straight years.

NPR

White House Official Cecilia Munoz On Budget Plan

President Obama's $3.8 trillion budget proposal calls for spending cuts and ambitious increases in education and transportation. But critics say it is nothing more than a re-election tactic. Host Michel Martin speaks with Cecilia Munoz, Director of the Domestic Policy Council.
NPR

Can Congress Ever Restore Payroll Taxes To Their Usual Levels?

What was once considered a normal rate will now be considered a tax hike. Reverting to the status quo is now politically dicey. That could affect Social Security's financing over the long haul.
NPR

Pentagon May Cut Budget Of National Guard, Reserves

The Pentagon is deciding what to cut from its budget. Defense officials want to push many of the planned cuts onto the National Guard and Reserves. This is already leading to a campaign by Guard-backers to keep their forces strong. But active-duty military say cuts in recent years have taken too much from them, so it's the Guard's turn.
NPR

Pa.'s Gas Boom Worsens Low-Cost Housing Shortage

The natural gas boom in Pennsylvania has new workers flooding into the state. That's causing a housing crunch in some communities, as locals get priced out of the rental market. One rural county in the northern part of the state has opened its first homeless shelter.
NPR

Digging Deeper Into Obama's 2013 Budget

President Obama laid out his proposed federal budget for 2013 at a community college in Virginia on Monday. The $ 3.8 trillion plan calls for new government spending, including stimulus-style spending on roads. It also seeks to achieve $4 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade

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