The annual report has been issued on how Shenandoah National Park helps the economy. The National Park Service says one million visitors last year spent over $72 million in surrounding communities, supporting 889 jobs. The report says $10 came back for every $1 invested in the National Park Service. But the figures are lower than they were in 2012 due to the two-week federal government shutdown in October 2013. Most visitor spending was for lodging followed by food and gasoline. The most jobs supported were in the restaurant industry.
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General health has improved worldwide, thanks to significant progress against infectious diseases and gains in fighting maternal and child illnesses.
The U.S. Congress will soon embark on a high-stakes budget negotiation with President Barack Obama that, if productive, could give Republicans the increased military spending they want and Democrats the increased domestic spending they seek.