- - Thursday, August 2, 2012

SAN BERNARDINO — Officials in San Bernardino, which is facing an expected $45.8 million budget deficit this year, have formally filed for Chapter 9 bankruptcy protection, a move city leaders approved last month.

Interim City Manager Andrea Travis-Miller said Wednesday there would be “no immediate service reductions or changes in service to the community as a result of the filing.”

City officials are working on a plan for the city’s operational budget during bankruptcy. Once the plan is complete, reductions may occur, said Mrs. Travis-Miller, who is aiming to submit a plan for the City Council’s consideration within the next three weeks.

The city of 210,000 people, about 60 miles east of Los Angeles, declared a fiscal emergency July 18. It has become the third California city to declare insolvency this year, joining Stockton and Mammoth Lakes.

ILLINOIS

Double-decker Megabus crashes into bridge

LITCHFIELD — A packed double-decker Megabus blew a tire and slammed head-on into a concrete bridge support pillar on an interstate in Illinois on Thursday, officials said.

Illinois State Police Trooper Doug Francis said he had no reports of fatalities or number of injuries about two hours after the crash of the discount charter bus, which the company said was traveling from Chicago to Kansas City. He said 30 ambulances and 10 medical helicopters were sent to the scene.

“We received a report it had blown a tire, which caused it to run off the road,” Trooper Francis said. “The bus did stay upright.”

Television helicopter footage shows numerous emergency vehicles surrounding the bus and rescue crews climbing ladders to reach inside its crumpled front end. Some passengers could be seen being aided along the side of Interstate 55, which was closed in both directions.

Megabus spokeswoman Amanda Byers said the bus was at full capacity, carrying 81 passengers, when it crashed near Litchfield, about 55 miles northeast of St. Louis. The bus also was to stop in St. Louis and Columbia, Mo.

NEW YORK

Police: Missing swimmer spotted in S. Carolina

MASSAPEQUA — A man reported missing in waters off Long Island is believed to be alive and well and en route back to New York after apparently spending some time in Florida, police said Thursday.

“He’s not drowned and dead,” New York State Park Police Capt. Bruce Marx said at a briefing.

Raymond Roth, 47, of Massapequa was reported missing Saturday after his son told authorities the two had gone to Jones Beach and his father had gone swimming but never returned. Police marine units, helicopters and officers searched for several days with no results.

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