US ends oil, gas lease sales from public land through June

BILLINGS, Mont. — The US Interior Department is cancelling oil and gas lease sales from public lands through June amid an ongoing review of how the program contributes to climate change, officials said Wednesday. The action does not affect existing leases and the agency has continued to issue new drilling permits during an open-ended review of the program that was ordered by the White House, said Nada Culver, deputy director of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management. Lease sales were scheduled in at least two states — Nevada on June 8 and Colorado on June 27. Details on the cancellations were obtained by The Associated Press in advance of their public announcement.

Anthem pushes beyond expectations in Q1

INDIANAPOLIS — Anthem delivered a better-than-expected first quarter and pushed its 2021 forecast past expectations as enrollment growth lifted the health insurer. A 20% jump in membership for state and federally funded Medicaid plans that Anthem manages spurred a 3% overall enrollment gain compared to last year’s opening quarter. The Blue Cross-Blue Shield insurer has 43.5 million customers and is the nation’s second-largest health insurer, trailing only UnitedHealthcare.

Harrah’s, Caesars get $170M upgrades

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. — Two Atlantic City casinos will be getting a $170 million makeover of their hotel rooms this summer as part of a $400 million investment their parent company is making in the city over the next three years.

Caesars Entertainment said Wednesday it will begin the project by redoing hotel rooms at Harrah’s and Caesars.

The company pledged a minimum $400 million investment in Atlantic City during hearings last year before state gambling regulators on the merger of Caesars Entertainment and Eldorado Gaming, which was approved. The new company retained the Caesars name.

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