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story.lead_photo.caption John Roberts (left) and Jake Bisbee tend water pumps Friday in the yard of a neighbor in Monona, Wis., as floodwaters threatened. Dane County, which includes the capital, Madison, received 11 inches of rain in the past week.

Musk says he won't take Tesla private

Elon Musk, the chief executive of electric-car maker Tesla, said he and the company's board had concluded that they would not turn Tesla into a privately owned company.

The move, announced late Friday, halts a process set in motion by Musk in a Twitter post Aug. 7. The reversal is the latest upheaval for the company, which has struggled with production challenges for its first mass-market car, the Model 3.

"I knew the process of going private would be challenging, but it's clear that it would be even more time-consuming and distracting than initially anticipated," Musk wrote in a statement that Tesla posted on the company's Twitter account and blog shortly after 11 p.m.

"After considering all these factors, I met with Tesla's board of directors yesterday and let them know that I believe the better path is for Tesla to remain public," he said.

In a separate statement, six of Tesla's directors said that at the meeting, Musk "reported on the work he and his advisers have been doing in connection with this effort."

"Elon communicated to the board that after having done this work and considered all factors, he believes the better path is to no longer pursue a transaction for taking Tesla private," the directors said in the statement.

Lawmaker says wife misused funds

SAN DIEGO -- Indicted Republican Rep. Duncan Hunter is suggesting that his wife is to blame for misuse of campaign funds after the couple was indicted on using up to $250,000 in campaign funds for trips, clothing purchases and school tuition

Hunter in an interview with Fox News on Thursday after the couple pleaded innocent to illegally using the campaign account for personal expenses said his campaign made mistakes and that his wife was his campaign manager.

Hunter had said a year ago that his campaign would stop paying his wife, Margaret, as the spending was investigated.

Hunter defended some of the spending, saying trips paid for with campaign funds were for fundraising

Hunter and his wife arrived and left separately from federal court to enter their pleas.

Verizon removes data caps in disasters

SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- A nationwide telecommunications company rolled out changes Friday as state lawmakers said they were upset to learn that Verizon slowed Northern California firefighters' Internet service while they battled what became the state's largest-ever wildfire.

Verizon said it removed all speed-cap restrictions for emergency workers fighting wildfires on the West Coast and for those in Hawaii, where emergency crews were rescuing people Friday from areas flooded by Hurricane Lane. The company promised to lift restrictions on public safety customers and provide full network access when other disasters arise.

The announcement came hours before the state Assembly Select Committee on Natural Disaster, Response, Recovery, and Rebuilding held an informational hearing on the incident.

Lawmakers are angered by the incident and committed to making sure it never happens again, said Democratic Assemblyman Marc Levine of San Rafael.

The Santa Clara County Fire Department said Verizon slowed its Internet communications at a wildfire command center three weeks ago, crippling the emergency communications truck's data speeds and forcing firefighters to use other agencies' Internet connections and their personal cellphones.

The county disclosed the problem in a court filing last week supporting a lawsuit brought by 22 state attorneys general seeking to restore net neutrality rules repealed by the Federal Communications Commission.

3 people charged in N.C. statue toppling

RALEIGH, N.C. -- Police filed charges Friday against three people accused of helping tear down a century-old Confederate statue during a protest this week at North Carolina's flagship university.

The University of North Carolina's campus police department filed warrants for the three on misdemeanor charges of rioting and defacing a public monument, according to a news release. The release said the three aren't affiliated with the university.

The suspects hadn't been arrested as of Friday afternoon, said spokesman Randy Young.

The department said more people face charges. Another protester was charged earlier in the week with misdemeanor counts of resisting officers and wearing a mask shortly before the statue came down.

Several hundred protesters on the university's campus in Chapel Hill used ropes Monday night to bring down the statue known as "Silent Sam." The organized protesters took advantage of a nonconfrontational police response to topple the statue that stood since 1913 in a main quad.

University and legislative leaders have condemned the protesters' actions as "mob rule," demanding a hard look at the police response and a full criminal investigation. The State Bureau of Investigation has been brought in to assist.

-- Compiled by Democrat-Gazette staff from wire reports

The USS Constitution, also known as Old Ironsides, sails past Fort Independence off the shore of Castle Island on Friday in Boston. The vessel, which patrolled from 1797-1855, is the world’s oldest commissioned warship still afloat.

A Section on 08/25/2018

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