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Chemical draws FDA concern

WASHINGTON — The Food and Drug Administration has reversed its position on the safety of Bisphenol A, a chemical found in plastic bottles, soda cans, food containers and thousands of consumer goods, saying it now has concerns about health risks.

Growing scientific evidence has linked the chemical to a range of problems, from cancer to sexual dysfunction to heart disease.

"We have some concern, which leads us to recommend reasonable steps the public can take to reduce exposure to BPA," Joshua Sharfstein, the FDA's deputy commissioner, said in a conference call to reporters Friday. They include discarding scratched baby bottles and infant feeding cups and not putting very hot liquid into bottles containing BPA while preparing them for a child.

Arizona board votes to shut 13 state parks

PHOENIX — An oversight board has voted unanimously to close 13 of Arizona's state parks in response to budget cuts.

The move by the Arizona State Parks Board on Friday will keep two-thirds of the state's parks shuttered.

Some of Arizona's iconic Old West landmarks will be closed, including the Tombstone Courthouse and the Yuma Territorial Prison. The decision also closes parks such as Red Rock State Park in Sedona that draw tens of thousands of tourists a year.

The Legislature has cut 61 percent of the state parks budget since July. Parks Board member Walter Armer says the board has no other options but to close parks.

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