Southwest to let fliers pay to reserve seats

Unlike other carriers, Southwest Airlines doesn’t give passengers assigned seats, but now for $10 each way it’s giving customers a better shot at scoring a window or aisle seat.

Southwest announced Wednesday that customers can pay extra to reserve a spot in the boarding line right behind elite regular fliers and ahead of families with young children and other travelers.

This offering comes after Southwest introduced new fees for minors traveling alone and for bringing a small pet on board. Southwest still doesn’t charge to check the first two bags, but experts and regular passengers are starting to wonder if that’s next.

Uranium mining back in northern Arizona

Uranium mining is returning to northern Arizona after an absence of more than 20 years. A rebound in uranium market price and Tuesday’s air quality permit approval by the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality has Denison Mines planning to begin production before the end of the year at its Arizona 1 mine, about 35 miles south of Fredonia.

“We’re looking forward to mining again on the Arizona Strip, and I’m sure the people of Fredonia are happy too,” Denison President Ron Hochstein said.

He said 50 or more miners, earning average salaries of about $80,000, will be put to work at Arizona 1.

Up to 110,000 tons of ore per year will be mined at the site.

Galaxy Gaming shares now on Bulletin Board

Table game provider Galaxy Gaming is now traded under the symbol GLXZ on the Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board, the Las Vegas-based company announced Wednesday.

The new symbol marks the completion of the company’s reverse merger with a financial firm earlier this year.

Galaxy Gaming offers casinos side wagers for blackjack and pai gow poker and two proprietary, nontraditional table games.

Las Vegas Sands moves toward resuming plans

Las Vegas Sands Corp. took another step toward restarting its stalled projects on Macau’s Cotai Strip.

The company announced Wednesday it had secured commitments for up to $600 million of cash through the sale of exchangeable bonds. The bonds must be exchanged into common stock of one of the company’s subsidiaries pending a successful initial public offering on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange.

Las Vegas Sands has said proceeds from an IPO in Asia would be used to resume construction on hotel-casino developments in Macau, which were halted 10 months ago when the company ran into financial trouble and credit markets dried up.


Replacement proposed for Fannie, Freddie

A mortgage industry group wants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac replaced with private companies that would be able to issue mortgage bonds formally backed by the federal government.

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s proposal, released Wednesday, offers a plan for restructuring the U.S. mortgage market, which has been torn apart by the housing bust.

The Obama administration doesn’t expect to announce its plans for the two companies until early next year. It has listed several options, including merging them into a federal agency, shutting them down, or having their bad mortgage assets split into a new government-backed company.

Abbott Laboratories to acquire Visiogen

Abbott Laboratories said it agreed to acquire Irvine, Calif.-based Visiogen Inc., a maker of artificial lenses used to treat patients with cataracts, for $400 million in cash.

Closely held Visiogen makes intraocular lenses that are implanted in patients’ eyes after removal of the natural lens that has become clouded after a cataract. The product, known as Synchrony, is sold in Europe and is awaiting approval from U.S. regulators.

Southwest adjusts flights at McCarran

McCarran International Airport’s biggest carrier announced several seasonal flight adjustments for its January and February schedules.

Southwest Airlines will add one daily flight each from Las Vegas to Baltimore and Salt Lake City in January, and two daily flights to Buffalo in February. The airline will drop one daily flight each in January and February to Albuquerque, N.M.; Denver; Los Angeles; Oakland, Calif.; Seattle; and St. Louis.

Brad Hawkins, a Southwest spokesman, said the adjustments are standard seasonal schedule tweaks.

Hawkins also noted that Las Vegas is the airline’s biggest destination, so companywide schedule changes reflect more additions and subtractions here than in other markets.

Nearly 470 of Southwest’s 3,200 daily flights go through McCarran.

Neon wraps can light up the night for advertising
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Nevada on the forefront of drone safety
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Project billed as one of the world's largest marijuana dispensaries plans to open Nov. 1
Planet 13 co-CEO Larry Scheffler talks about what to expect from the new marijuana dispensary, Thursday, July 19, 2018. (Marcus Villagran/Las Vegas Review-Journal) @brokejournalist
Oasis Biotech opens in Las Vegas
Brock Leach, chief operating officer of Oasis Biotech, discusses the new plant factory at its grand opening on July 18. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
UNLV Tech Park innovation building breaks ground
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Caesars Forum Meeting Center
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Technology reshapes the pawn shop industry
Devin Battersby attaches a black-colored device to the back of her iPhone and snaps several of the inside and outside of a Louis Vuitton wallet. The device, installed with artificial intelligence capabilities, analyzes the images using a patented microscopic technology. Within a few minutes, Battersby receives an answer on her app. The designer item is authentic.
Recreational marijuana has been legal in Nevada for one year
Exhale Nevada CEO Pete Findley talks about the one year anniversary of the legalization of recreational marijuana in Nevada. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Young adults aren't saving for retirement
Financial advisors talk about saving trends among young adults. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
President Trump’s tariffs could raise costs for real estate developers, analysts say
President Donald Trump made his fortune in real estate, but by slapping tariffs on imports from close allies, developers in Las Vegas and other cities could get hit hard.
Las Vegas business and tariffs
Barry Yost, co-owner of Precision Tube Laser, LLC, places a metal pipe into the TruLaser Tube 5000 laser cutting machine on Wednesday, June 20, 2018, in Las Vegas. Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Las Vegas Review-Journal @bizutesfaye
Nevada Film Office Connects Businesses To Producers
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Opendoor isn't the typical house flipping company
Unlike most house flippers, the company aims to make money from transaction costs rather than from selling homes for more than their purchase price.
The Venetian gondoliers sing Italian songs
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Building In Logandale
Texas homebuilder D.R. Horton bought 43 lots in rural Logandale. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Indoor farming in Southern Nevada
Experts discuss Nevada's indoor farming industry. (Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Former Fontainebleau could have become a Waldorf Astoria
Months after developer Steve Witkoff bought the Fontainebleau last summer, he unveiled plans to turn the mothballed hotel into a Marriott-managed resort called The Drew. But if Richard “Boz” Bosworth’s plans didn’t fall through, the north Las Vegas Strip tower could have become a Waldorf Astoria with several floors of timeshare units. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
LVCVA CEO Rossi Ralenkotter announces plans to retire
Rossi Ralenkotter, CEO of the LVCVA, on Tuesday confirmed a Las Vegas Review-Journal report that he is preparing to retire. Richard N. Velotta/ Las Vegas Review-Journal
Cousins Maine Lobster to open inside 2 Las Vegas Smith’s stores
Cousins Maine Lobster food truck company will open inside Las Vegas’ two newest Smith’s at Skye Canyon Park Drive and U.S. Highway 95, and at Warm Springs Road and Durango Drive. Cousins currently sells outside some Las Vegas Smith’s stores and at Fremont Street and Las Vegas Boulevard. (K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Las Vegas home prices to continue to rise, expert says
Lawrence Yun, chief economist at the National Association of Realtors, gives homebuyers a pulse on the Las Vegas housing market. (Eli Segall/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
NV Energy announces clean energy investment
The company is planning to add six solar projects in Nevada, along with the state's first major battery energy storage capacity. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
3 Mario Batali restaurants on Las Vegas Strip to close
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Nevada has its first cybersecurity apprenticeship program
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Las Vegas union members voting to authorize the right to strike
Thousands of Las Vegas union members voting Tuesday morning to authorize the right to strike. A “yes” vote would give the union negotiating committee the power to call a strike anytime after June 1 at the resorts that fail to reach an agreement. (Todd Prince/Las Vegas Review-Journal)
Small businesses struggle to find qualified candidates
A 2018 survey found that over two-thirds of small businesses in Nevada find it somewhat to very difficult to recruit qualified candidates. Bailey Schulz/Las Vegas Review-Journal
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