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Amtrak ridership reaches reord high

Amtrak on Friday reported record ridership and revenue figures for the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, leading officials to predict the heavily subsidized railroad could eliminate operating losses as soon as next year.

The government-owned passenger railroad said it provided 32.5 million passenger trips, an increase of about 800,000 over the previous fiscal year. Ridership numbers were affected the last two years by summer repair work at New York's Penn Station that forced some service cutbacks.

Total operating revenue rose more than 3% to $3.3 billion with an operating loss of just under $30 million. That's the smallest loss in Amtrak's 48-year history. Amtrak reported an operating loss of about $170 million in 2018.

Officials said they expect to break even by the end of the next fiscal year, which would mark a first in Amtrak's history. Last year, they had projected eliminating operating losses by 2021.

 

Facebook deletes whistleblower name

Facebook says it is deleting the name of the person who has been identified in conservative circles as the whistleblower who triggered a congressional impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump's actions.

The company said Friday that mention of the potential whistleblower's name violates Facebook's "coordinating harm policy," which prohibits material that could identify a "witness, informant, or activist."

Facebook says it is removing mentions of the alleged whistleblower's name and will revisit this decision if the name is widely published in the media or used by public figures in debate.

On Twitter, though, the alleged whistleblower's name was circulating widely on Friday. The company does not have a policy against identifying whistleblowers by name and is not removing the posts.

 

Ben & Jerry's sued for happy cow claim

Ben & Jerry's is facing a lawsuit accusing the ice cream maker and its parent company of false advertising by saying the milk and cream in its products comes from "happy cows."

In a complaint filed Oct. 29 in federal court in Burlington, Vermont, where Ben & Jerry's was founded, environmental advocate James Ehlers said that many of the farms that produce the milk and cream are factory-style, mass production dairy operations and only some are part of the company's "Caring Dairy" program.

"In contrast to what Unilever has told consumers, the Products are made from a mixture of (1) milk that comes from farms participating in the "Caring Dairy" program and (2) milk that comes from cows on factory-style, mass-production dairy operations," the complaint said.

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