Gov. Andrew Cuomo says superstorm Sandy ran up a $42 billion bill on New York and the state, and New York City will make big requests for disaster aid from the federal government. Cuomo also announced the state will hire more than 5,000 unemployed residents in temporary positions to help clean up debris and distribute supplies in stricken areas. The jobs will pay roughly $15 an hour and could last as long as six months. A federal grant of nearly $28 million would pay for the positions.
A special primary to replace outgoing U.S. Rep. Jesse L. Jackson Jr. will be held in February, Gov. Pat Quinn announced Monday, as numerous potential candidates were already floating their names, calling leaders in search of financial and political backing. Quinn also announced a general election for March 19, to comply with requirements in state law that the election be held within 115 days. But the governor said that he will urge legislators to allow the election to be delayed until April 9 -- a day when local elections are already being held -- as a way to save money.
At least 16 people died in the eastern city of Lahore after drinking tainted cough syrup, and a homicide investigation was opened involving the factory it came from, police said. Another six victims were hospitalized, two in critical condition, after drinking the syrup. Government officials sealed the factory where the syrup was been manufactured and ordered the seizure of all outstanding stocks from shops. Pakistan has been plagued by deaths from adulterated medicine, including a wave of at least 100 deaths this year involving a tainted heart drug.
Rebels believed to be backed by Rwanda and Uganda let a midnight Monday deadline for their withdrawal expire in the key eastern Congolese city of Goma, which they seized last week. Trucks loaded with fighters belonging to the M23 rebel group patrolled the empty streets of the regional capital. The rebels announced that they plan to move their headquarters to Goma later this week, an indication that they did not intend to respect the demands of mediators.
An Austrian photo gallery says a camera used by a photographer who documented the life of artist Pablo Picasso has sold for a world record price of $2.19 million. The WestLicht gallery in Vienna says the Leica m3d belonged to David Douglas Duncan. The 96-year-old former photographer for LIFE magazine was a close friend of Picasso and published hundreds of exclusive photos of him. Manufactured in 1955, the camera is one of four ever made, and the price is a record for a commercially produced camera.