Ruling delayed on legal sports betting

Supporters of legalized sports gambling in New Jersey and several other states were dealt a no-decision of sorts Tuesday when the U.S. Supreme Court delayed a ruling on whether it will take up the states’ challenge to a federal ban.

The court invited the solicitor general to file a brief on behalf of the government, meaning a decision could take several more months. The high court had been expected to include the sports betting case in its announcement Tuesday on which cases it will hear this year.

New Jersey is challenging a 1992 federal law that restricts sports betting to Nevada and three other states that already had approved some form of wagering. In recent briefs to the Supreme Court, lawyers representing the state have argued that the federal law violates the Constitution by preventing states from repealing their own laws.

Several states, including Mississippi, West Virginia, Arizona, Louisiana and Wisconsin, have joined New Jersey’s effort.

In 2012 New Jersey enacted a law allowing betting at racetracks and casinos. The four major professional sports leagues and the NCAA sued to block the law from taking effect, arguing that the integrity of their games would be threatened and that there would be more game-fixing. A trial judge and federal appeals court ruled against the state.

New Jersey then enacted a law in 2014 that repealed prohibitions against sports gambling at casinos and racetracks. But that law was defeated by a federal judge in New Jersey and a federal appeals court in Philadelphia.

— Associated Press

Fewer late, canceled flights in November

The federal Department of Transportation reported Tuesday that 86.5 percent of U.S. flights in November arrived on time, an improvement over the previous month and November 2015.

Fewer than one-third of 1 percent of domestic flights were canceled, the lowest rate since the department started keeping comparable records in 1995.

Hawaiian Airlines and Delta Air Lines posted the best rates for on-time arrivals, over 90 percent. Virgin America had the worst mark, 81.4 percent.

Delta reported no canceled flights for the entire month but diverted 79 flights to alternative airports. Alaska, Frontier, Hawaiian and Virgin America canceled fewer than 20 flights each.

ExpressJet and SkyWest, which operate flights for brands such as American Eagle and United Express, each canceled more than 300 flights.

The airlines reported about two mishandled bags for every 1,000 passengers, the lowest rate in figures dating to 1987, the department said. Virgin America and Alaska had the best rates for bag handling, while ExpressJet and Frontier had the worst.

— Associated Press

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