Here is the latest news from The Associated Press at 1:40 p.m. EST | State News

NEW YORK (AP) – Medics rush to save the lives of people knocked out or trapped in their apartments by a fire that sent smoke into a New York City skyscraper. Seventeen people, including eight children, died in the Bronx fire on Sunday. Dozens of people were in hospital on Monday, and as many as 13 people were in critical condition. The fire is already the deadliest in the city for three decades. Investigators determined that a faulty electric heater was to blame. The flames damaged only a small part of the 19-story building, but smoke seeped through an open door and turned the stairwells into gloomy, ash-choked horrors.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The man who bought an AR-15-style rifle for Kyle Rittenhouse did not dispute a reduced charge of contributing to juvenile delinquency under a deal with prosecutors to avoid jail. A Wisconsin judge accepted Dominick Black’s plea on Monday. Prosecutors dropped two counts of intent to deliver a dangerous weapon to a minor. Contributing to the delinquency of a minor is a non-criminal citation. Black was 18 when he bought the rifle in May 2020. Rittenhouse was 17 and too young to buy a gun. Three months later, Rittenhouse used the rifle to shoot three people during a demonstration in Kenosha. He killed two. A jury acquitted him of several charges in November.

CHICAGO (AP) – The leader of the Chicago Teachers Union blames the city’s mayor for a continuing standoff over COVID-19 protocols. Chicago Teachers Union president Jesse Sharkey said the union and district “remained separate on a number of key features,” including more tests and lower thresholds to close the school for teaching in person during an epidemic. Chicago schools face the same pandemic issues as others nationwide, with a growing number of districts reverting to distance learning as infections explode during the omicron-fueled outbreak. .

BOSTON (AP) – New England states are bracing for extreme cold that is already shutting down some schools and threatening the electricity grid this week. Boston, the state’s largest public school district, announced Monday that schools will not open Tuesday due to the expected extremely cold temperatures. National Weather Service forecasters say the city’s high on Tuesday is expected to be 12 degrees Fahrenheit, with wind chills dropping it as low as minus 8. A Maine utility is also advising customers to take action beforehand. the temperature drop in this state. .

WASHINGTON (AP) – This year’s tax filing season will begin on January 24, 17 days earlier than last year. The Internal Reveue Service warned Monday that a resurgence of COVID-19 infections in addition to less funding from Congress than what the Biden administration had requested could make this filing season particularly difficult. IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig urged Americans to file electronically this year to avoid delays and get their refunds through direct deposit.

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