Business Briefs – May 2, 2019

Car-Sharing Apps’ Popularity Drives Debate About Taxes

PHOENIX (AP) — A battle is heating up in Arizona and some three dozen other states over how to regulate car-sharing. Apps such as Turo gaining popularity in the U.S. They function like Airbnb for vehicles, allowing people to rent out their cars when they’re not using them. Rental car companies and airport authorities say users should pay the same taxes and fees that come with traditional rental cars. San Francisco-based Turo says rental car companies are trying to stifle competition.

Aiming at Trump, House Oks Bill To Keep U.S. in Climate Accord

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Democratic-controlled House has approved legislation that would prevent President Donald Trump from following through on his pledge to withdraw the U.S. from a landmark global climate agreement. The bill also would ensure the U.S. honors its commitments under the deal signed in Paris by President Barack Obama. The bill falls short of the Green New Deal pushed by many Democrats but is the first significant climate legislation passed by the House is nearly a decade. Trump is pledging a veto.

Trump Easing Offshore Drilling Safety Rules From Deepwater

PORT FOURCHON, La. (AP) – The Trump administration is easing safety rules adopted after the 2010 BP Deepwater Horizon blowout, the worst offshore oil disaster in U.S. history. The Interior Department was making the announcement Thursday in Port Fourchon, Louisiana, a hub of offshore drilling on the Gulf of Mexico. Port workers in hard hats and reflective safety vests applauded speakers’ calls for easing regulations. The rules pertain to procedures and inspections on oil rigs. Eleven people died in April 2010 when the drilling rig exploded, ultimately releasing more than 3 million barrels of crude into the Gulf of Mexico.

Under Trump Change, Cuba Business Partners Can Now Be Sued

MIAMI (AP) – On Thursday, Mickael Behn and Javier García Bengochea filed what were believed to be the first lawsuits against European and American companies doing business on confiscated properties in Cuba. That’s thanks to the Trump administration’s decision to activate a provision of the U.S. embargo on the island, potentially affecting foreign investment for years to come.

U.S. Steel Plows $1b Into Western Pennsylvania Operations

PITTSBURGH (AP) — U.S. Steel will invest more than $1 billion on state-of-the-art facilities in western Pennsylvania that it says will improve its steelmaking efficiency and reduce emissions at its Mon Valley Works operations. The steelmaker said Thursday that a new cogeneration facility at its Clairton Plant will feature an emissions control system that can convert some of the coke oven gas generated there into electricity to power other parts of the plant.

Beyond Meat Fattens Up As Shares Rise in IPO

NEW YORK (AP) – The Nasdaq is adding fake meat to its diet. Beyond Meat, the purveyor of plant-based burgers and sausages, saw its share price more than double Thursday in its stock market debut. It’s the first pure-play maker of vegan “meat” to go public, according to Renaissance Capital, which researches and tracks IPOs. Beyond Meat raised about $240 million selling 9.6 million shares at $25 each. Those shares rose 163% to close at $65.75.