EVERY MORNING, TheJournal.ie brings you nine things you need to know as you kick off your day.
1. #COALITION: Backbenchers from Fine Gael and Labour are reported to be unhappy at plans to include farm and business assets in the means testing of third level grants. Discussions are being held at Cabinet level in response to proposals that assets worth more than €750,000 should be included in the assessment.
2. #SEÁN FITZPATRICK: The former chairman of Anglo Irish Bank, Seán Fitzpatrick, is back in court today, as he faces 12 charges which include making misleading statements to auditors of Anglo Irish Bank during the 2000s.
3. #SAVITA: The final report into the death of Savita Halappanavar is to be presented to government next Friday. The chairman of Regional Health Forum West told TheJournal.ie that around 30 people are named in the report.
4. #POST-MORTEM: A post-mortem is to be carried out today on a body which was found in a burnt-out car last night. The discovery was made on Gyles Quay near Lordship in Dundalk, Co Louth.
5. #MICHAELA: A number of senior detectives from the PSNI are assisting local police in Mauritius, as the investigation into the death of Michaela McAreavey continues. It is over two years since McAreavey was killed while on honeymoon.
6. #AMERICA: Both democrats and republicans are blaming each other for the country’s failure to avoid $85 billion in spending cuts, which come into effect from today. Congressional leaders are set to meet in order to determine how the cuts should be made.
7. #MILK PRODUCTION: CSO figures have revealed that milk production fell by 12 per cent in January. Farmers have blamed a “perfect storm” of rising production costs and falling market prices for the decline.
8. #SOUTH AFRICA: There has been international outrage over footage which showed a man being dragged behind a police van in South Africa. The man in the footage was later found dead in his police cell. Police in Johannesburg are to hold a press conference related to the incident later today.
9. #WIKILEAKS: Bradley Manning, the US Army private who leaked thousands of classified cables to the Wikileaks website, has pleaded guilty to misusing classified material. Manning, who faces up to 20 years in prison, has denied a charge that he aided the enemy.