Haiti UN agricultural agency kick starts irrigation clearing programme

8 February 2010The United Nations agricultural agency has launched a scheme for some 600 Haitians affected by the Caribbean country’s devastating earthquake to quickly clear irrigation canals in a bid to save this season’s bean and maize crops, the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) announced today. The United Nations agricultural agency has launched a scheme for some 600 Haitians affected by the Caribbean country’s devastating earthquake to quickly clear irrigation canals in a bid to save this season’s bean and maize crops, the Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) announced today.FAO is providing a small payment for each worker and 600 hand tools for the task that will remain the property of farmer’s organizations in the rural areas near Léogâne, the coastal city at the epicentre of the quake which struck Haiti on 12 January.“For the farmers around Léogâne the earthquake could not have come at a worse time,” said FAO Emergency Coordinator in Haiti Alex Jones. “Damage to irrigation works threatens their current crops not yet harvested, while breakdowns in the supply of seed and fertilizer inputs may limit planting in the main spring agricultural season,” added Mr. Jones. An early FAO assessment in the agricultural area around the Haitian farming town that was almost completely destroyed found that earthquake debris and subsequent landslides had blocked canals threatening crops that were just weeks away from being ready to harvest. Further inspection found that there had been substantial damage to vital infrastructure such as canals and feeder roads in and around Léogâne, which has an estimated 80 per cent of its buildings destroyed. FAO has also provided financial support and technical assistance, as well as mobilizing a Canadian Army backhoe – a piece of heavy earth-moving equipment – for some of the large-scale removal. The clearance operation is slated to continue for about a week, and next Monday a small team of FAO experts will start a full and accurate assessment of the damages, needs and plans for agriculture and food security rehabilitation, which will feed into the larger Post Disaster Needs Assessment, coordinated by the UN and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).In addition, FAO is working to secure funding to help poor Haitian farmers make the spring planting season, which accounts for 60 per cent of the country’s national harvest. read more

Feds ask Canadian telecoms to disclose private customer information 12 million times

OTTAWA — The federal government asks Canadian telecom companies for private customer information about 1.2 million times each year, documents released Tuesday by the federal privacy commissioner’s office show.It is unclear how many of those requests are made without a warrant. But figures provided to the office in late 2011 show wireless telecom companies complied with the government’s requests for customer data at least 784,756 times.However, the actual total is likely even greater, since only three of nine telecom companies told the commissioner’s office how many times they granted the government’s requests for customer data.I’m not disputing that there are times when there is no time to get a warrant — life is in dangerThe numbers came to light Tuesday as Canada’s acting privacy commissioner revealed that telecom companies have refused to disclose how often they release confidential customer information to the federal government without a warrant.Don Healy / Postmedia News Chantal Bernier, the interim privacy commissioner, said her office has repeatedly asked telecom companies to disclose statistics and the scope of warrantless disclosure of data, but to no avail.“I’m not disputing that there are times when there is no time to get a warrant — life is in danger,” Bernier said.“What we would like is for those warrantless disclosures to simply be represented in statistics so that Canadians have an idea of the scope of the phenomenon.”Bernier said the companies have only provided her office with aggregate data, which shows how many times the telecom industry as a whole gives the government customer information without a warrant.In 2011, the privacy commissioner’s office asked 12 telecom companies for information about their customer-disclosure data.The Canadian Wireless Telecommunications Association, which represents the industry, replied with aggregate data from nine of the 12 companies.On Tuesday, Bernier’s office provided media outlets with a copy of the association’s response, which reveals that as of December 2011, the aggregate average number of requests was 1,193,630 a year.We have tried many times. We have sought out information from the telecoms to find out“We have tried many times. We have sought out information from the telecoms to find out,” Bernier said. “They’ve given us very general comments.”The association confirmed it provided the privacy commissioner’s office with “an aggregate number of lawful access requests” a few years ago.“It was a one-time exercise and hasn’t been repeated since,” spokesman Marc Choma said in an email.NDP consumer affairs critic Glenn Thibeault said the documents show privacy laws must be modernized and strengthened to better protect Canadians’ personal information.Last month, the Chronicle Herald newspaper in Halifax reported the Canada Border Services Agency alone accessed telecom customer data almost 19,000 times over one year — and no warrant was used more than 99% of the time.Brent Lewin/Bloomberg The law allows Canadian telecom companies and Internet providers to hand over customer information without a court order to help law-enforcement investigations.Bernier said she would like to see statistics published so Canadians know how many times their personal information is given to the government without a warrant.“It would give a form of oversight by empowering citizens to see what the scope of the phenomenon is.”In January, Bernier’s office released a report calling on Communications Security Establishment Canada — the federal government’s electronic eavesdropping agency — to tell Canadians more about what it’s doing.One of the recommendations, intended to bolster protection of privacy rights in national security efforts, called on CSEC to disclose annual statistics on cases in which it assists other federal agencies with requests for interception, which can include monitoring of Canadians.Bernier spoke to reporters after her appearance at a Senate committee looking into changes to Bell Canada’s privacy policy.The privacy commissioner’s office has received 170 complaints about the way Bell collects and uses its customers’ personal information to target online advertisements, she said.Her office is investigating Bell’s privacy policy and Bernier says a finding is expected by the end of the year.Representatives from Bell are scheduled to appear before the same Senate committee on Wednesday. read more

UN chief praises potential of cooperatives to empower communities and combat hunger

During a ceremony to close the International Year of Cooperatives at UN Headquarters in New York, Mr. Ban also highlighted the contributions that cooperatives make to achieve sustainable livelihoods and social protection for many people in developing countries.“We know there continues to be a hunger for policies and approaches that address social and economic goals that go beyond a one-dimensional bottom line,” Mr. Ban said in a message delivered on his behalf. “By emphasizing core values, cooperatives help advance a vision that embraces social objectives into the business model.”Cooperatives – member-driven business enterprises in which decisions balance the pursuit of profit with the needs and interests of members and their communities – have been found to generate significant financial turnover. In October, the UN General Assembly declared 2012 as the International Year of Cooperatives, with the theme ‘Promoting Cooperatives Beyond 2012,’ to highlight their role in development. Governments, civil society and representatives of cooperatives, from various sectors, gathered at UN Headquarters over the past two days to mark its closing and share the major outcomes from the year as well as lessons learned from cooperatives around the world, with the aim of influencing policy dialogues on development.“As a strong partner in development, the cooperative movement works with the United Nations every day to empower people, enhance human dignity and help achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs),” Mr. Ban said, referring to the anti-poverty targets set to expire on 2015.In his remarks, Mr. Ban also noted how cooperatives can help mobilize youth by providing them with their own productive enterprises and facilitating engagement in their communities. Events to mark the closing of the International Year at UN Headquarters included an interactive panel discussion on global food security and the role of cooperatives took place, a special event featuring a forum on cooperatives and youth, and a news conference.The world’s largest 300 cooperatives generated revenues of $1.6 trillion and employ nearly 100 million people worldwide, according to the International Cooperative Alliance. A majority of the organizations surveyed were in the insurance and food and agriculture sectors.In recent years, cooperatives exhibited an ability to withstand tests brought by market failures, as was the case during the economic crisis endured by Europe in 2011. Additionally, agricultural cooperatives have an increasing role to play in future action plans for global food security, according to the European Research Institute on Cooperative and Social Enterprises. read more

Rights to safe water sanitation must not remain mirage for millions of

Photo: IRIN/Richard LoughIndependent experts or special rapporteurs are appointed by the UN Human Rights Council to examine and report back on a country situation or a specific human rights theme. The positions are honorary and the experts are not UN staff, nor are they paid for their work. “Kenya is in a critical transitional moment for the provision of water and sanitation,” Catarina de Albuquerque, the Special Rapporteur on the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation, said in a statement. “Kenya is often invoked as a model at the international level due to the constitutional recognition of water and sanitation as human rights.”However, there is still a long way to go to realize the human rights to water and sanitation for all. Much more has to be done to translate the law into reality for the millions of Kenyans for whom these human rights are still only a mirage.”Following her 22 to 28 July visit, Ms. de Albuquerque urged the Parliament to adopt the Water Bill, and the Government to subsequently develop a new national water and sanitation strategy, which should be translated into real action at the county level.A news release on the visit noted that only 30 per cent of Kenya’s population has access to improved sanitation, while 13 per cent of people still have no choice but to defecate in the open. “This is a daily indignity for over 6 million people,” said the expert. In Turkana county, which Ms. de Albuquerque visited during her mission, over 80 per cent of the population practice open defecation. “This is not only an absolute denial of the right to sanitation, but also a serious threat to public health and the security of women and girls who have to walk into the bush at night. These women and girls are exposed to daily risks due to the lack of proper sanitation,” she stressed. “Realizing human rights costs money. Without dedicated budgets for sanitation, water and hygiene, the constitutionally recognized rights to water and sanitation will never materialize,” she added. “By investing in sanitation, Kenya would make significant economic gains,” stated the expert, noting that the country loses at least $330 million every year due to premature death, health care costs and productivity losses resulting from the lack of access to adequate sanitation. “This is the moment to make it happen. The Kenyan Government must seize the opportunity. The rights to water and sanitation should not remain a dream for so many.” read more

Alex Rodriguez Blues Benched Trade Talk Caught Chasing Woman

Alex Rodriguez has been in a worldwind, and not a good one. He’s been benched by New York Yankees manager Joe Giradi, which is bad enough. Now comes word that he tried to pick up a woman during Game 1 of the series against the Detroit Tigers and that he could be trade fodder for the Miami Marlins. And you thought you had a bad week.New broke via The New York Post late Wednesday that Rodriguez, who had been removed from the game for a pinch hitter in Game 1 of the ALCS, had written a note on the ball in search of a woman’s phone number and had a ball boy deliver it to the fan. The newspaper identified the women as Kyna Treacy, an Australian bikini model, who was with her friend Kate Quinn.“It’s true,” the team source was quoted by the newspaper. “It was witnessed in the dugout. The whole thing is true.” When asked about the Post report Tuesday, Rodriguez told ESPNNewYork.com’s Wallace Matthews, “Don’t believe any of that (expletive).”Meanwhile, it is somewhat ironic that a joke between Yankees’ president Randy Levine and Miami Marlins owner Jeffrey Loria evolved into the serious discussions about the slumping third baseman being traded to the Marlins.Levine and Loria discussed the possibility of A-Rod playing in Miami, his hometown, according to ESPN, but characterized it as a joke between old friends.According to the source, Loria said, “Alex is Mr. Miami, it would be great if he played here for us.”To which Levine is said to have replied, “You can have him.”A second source with knowledge of Rodriguez’ thinking said the likely only place Rodriguez eventually would accept a trade to is Miami. Rodriguez has five years and $114 million remaining on his contract, not including milestone home run bonuses. He also has veto power over any trade.The conversation between the Yankees and Marlins initially was reported by Keith Olbermann on his MLB.com “Nerd Blog.” Variety also reported the news.Yankees general manager Brian Cashman said he has had no trade talks regarding Rodriguez with anyone and described the first report as “false.”Levine refused to comment on the conversation with Loria, and when asked if he would look to shop Rodriguez in the offseason, he said, “That’s something we would need to discuss.”Appearing Sunday on Ian O’Connor’s show on ESPN New York 98.7 FM, Levine told O’Connor the following regarding A-Rod’s future as a Yankee:“That’s like one of those questions: Where’s the stock market going to be in 2017? Who’s going to be president on Nov. 15?” he said. “If I had a crystal ball to predict all of that stuff, I’d be a lot smarter than I am. I’m not going to go there.”Rodriguez has been marginalized in the Yankees’ lineup this postseason. He is 3 for 23, including 0 for 18 with 12 strikeouts against right-handers, and repeatedly has been benched and pinch hit for in the playoffs. Rodriguez was benched for the third time this postseason in Game 4 of the ALCS on Wednesday night.“For all our fan base: Let’s root for Alex, the contract is what it is, and he’s there, and we hope he gets hot,” Levine told O’Connor. “It’s part of what we deal with all the time, just like any other contract.” read more

Mens Basketball No 17 Ohio State welcomes Indiana in first matchup of

Ohio State redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop (33) works his way into the lane in the first half of the game against Penn State on Jan. 25 in the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorNo. 17 Ohio State (18-5, 9-1 Big Ten) suffered a devastating loss at home to Penn State, falling 82-79 on a buzzer-beating, near-half-court shot from guard Tony Carr for its first Big Ten loss of the season.After four days of rest, which ties their longest break of the season, the Buckeyes will try to get back in the win column at 7 p.m. Tuesday when they welcome Indiana (12-10, 5-5 Big Ten) to the Schottenstein Center.Projected StartersIndiana:G — Josh Newkirk — Redshirt senior, 6-foot-1, 195 lbs., 8.1 ppg, 2.3 rpg, 2.9 apgG — Zach McRoberts — Redshirt junior, 6-foot-6, 205 lbs., 2.8 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 1.5 apgG — Robert Johnson — Senior, 6-foot-3, 195 lbs., 14.0 ppg, 4.6 rpg, 2.5 apgF — Juwan Morgan — Junior, 6-foot-8, 230 lbs., 16.3 ppg, 7.1 rpg, 1.2 apgF — Justin Smith — Freshman, 6-foot-7, 220 lbs., 5.5 ppg, 2.9 rpg, 0.3 apgOhio State:G — C.J. Jackson — Junior, 6-foot-1, 175 lbs., 13.0 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 4.4 apgG — Kam Williams — Redshirt senior, 6-foot-2, 185 lbs., 8.0 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 0.6 apgF — Keita Bates-Diop — Redshirt junior, 6-foot-7, 235 lbs., 19.9 ppg, 8.6 rpg, 1.3 apgF — Jae’Sean Tate — Senior, 6-foot-4, 230 lbs., 12.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.8 apgC — Kaleb Wesson — Freshman, 6-foot-9, 270 lbs., 11.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg, 1.1 apgMiller vs. HoltmannBefore accepting the head coaching position at Indiana, Archie Miller was Dayton’s head coach from 2011 to 2017 and an Ohio State assistant coach under Thad Matta from 2007 to 2009. His Ohio roots made him appear to be the most-likely successor when Ohio State and Matta parted ways.However, Miller took the Indiana job in March, three months before Matta was fired by Ohio State. Five days after Matta‘s tenure ended, Ohio State hired former Butler head coach Chris Holtmann to run the sputtering program.Indiana was not exactly a program coming off a sterling 2016-17 season. But given Ohio State’s losses of Trevor Thompson, JaQuan Lyle and Marc Loving, most people viewed the Hoosiers as the more potent Big Ten team. Instead, the Hoosiers have trudged through an inconsistent season while Ohio State has become a surprise Big Ten title contender. Still, it is too early for either coach’s tenure to be judged. But the rapid rise of the Buckeyes and the tradition of the Hoosiers makes Tuesday’s game the first installment of a new-era matchup between two coaches assigned with the task of getting their programs back to the top. Holtmann said he has not put too much thought into the narrative of the game between two of college basketball’s up-and-coming coaches, but knows those conversations will circulate around the programs.“Obviously, there were, what, three new coaches in the league. So to some degree, you recognize that there’s always going to be some comparison when you have three new coaches in the league,” Holtmann said. “How are they doing? What’s their year shaped up like? And I’m sure that will continue in the years to come.”Scouting IndianaIndiana has been involved in a number of close games lately, with each of its past three games being decided by single digits. Unfortunately for the Hoosiers, two of those were losses, including a 73-71 defeat at home to a middling Illinois team. Miller’s squad has been strong in the interior, shooting with 54.2 percent on 2-point field goals and holding teams to just 47.9 percent inside the 3-point arc. Both percentages place the Hoosiers in the top-100 teams in the nation. Outside the perimeter has been a different story. The Hoosiers have allowed opponents to shoot 37.8 percent from 3-point range, 297th-best in the country. Offensively, they have only mustered a 30.5 percent 3-point shooting percentage, which is 335th-best out of 351 total teams. Forward Juwan Morgan, who typically starts at center, leads the Hoosiers with both 16.3 points and 7.1 rebounds per game this season. Like the team, he has struggled to shoot from 3-point range with only a 26.5 percent clip, but has shot 65.2 percent inside the perimeter.While Ohio State does not rely on 3-point shooting, it is a team that can shoot from beyond the arc with accuracy. The Buckeyes’ 3-point percentage of 36.3 percent is the 113th-highest rate in the country. They also defend teams well, both outside the arc (34.1 percent allowed) and inside (46.1 percent allowed). With interior defenders like redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop and freshman center Kaleb Wesson, Ohio State will force the Hoosiers to find production outside of the paint and will make Miller rely more heavily on his guards than usual. read more

Nearly half of online GPs providing unsafe care for patients health watchdog

first_imgThe CQC, which has inspected every company that provides such online services in England, said that by February, 43 per cent were not providing “safe” care or adhering to regulations.It warned that technological advances should never be used at the expense of quality care, which prioritised patient safety.The CQC said it would continue to hold providers to account until they became as safe as general practices. It’s very concerning to see that even now, 43 per cent of online consultation providers have been deemed unsafe in some respectProfessor Helen Stokes-Lampard, chairman of the Royal College of GPs Nearly half of online GPs are providing unsafe care for patients, the health watchdog has warned.Independent online services, including pharmacies, websites and apps, are prescribing high volumes of painkillers without talking to the patients’ GPs and are inappropriately prescribing antibiotics, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) said.It also expressed concern that approaches to safeguarding children and those lacking the mental capacity to understand or consent to a consultation may be unsatisfactory and that the prescribing of medicines for long-term conditions could be inappropriate.Providers were also failing to collect patient information or share it with the relevant doctor, who should have accurate records of treatments and health problems. The watchdog did highlight positive findings, including a company that provides sexual health services online, with partner notification services where, with consent, it can confidentially trace at-risk sexual contacts. Show more The CQC found online consultations had the potential to improve access and the convenience of some patients, including those who found attending clinics or surgeries difficult through disability or through living in rural areas with poor transport.Professor Steve Field, CQC chief inspector of General Practice, said: “New methods of service delivery that increase access to care and give patients more control over how and when they see a GP have huge potential for patients and the health system.“However, it must never come at the expense of quality. Patient safety must be at the heart of all decisions around what kind of care is offered and how it is delivered.” The CQC noted that the 43 per cent deemed unsafe was an improvement from the 86 per cent it found on its first round of inspections.Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, chairman of the Royal College of GPs, said: “It’s absolutely right that the Care Quality Commission holds organisations that provide online primary care services to the same high standards as any other healthcare provider.“But it’s very concerning to see that even now, 43 per cent of online consultation providers have been deemed unsafe in some respect.“When patients’ health is at risk urgent, swift action must be taken to comprehensively address these before the service is rolled out further.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings.last_img read more

NagaCorp boss increases majority stake

first_img NagaCorp to begin Naga3 construction in late September: McNally NagaCorp welcomes Cambodia directive to halt online gambling Dr Chen gained control of the company last August after exercising conversion rights in respect to TSCLK Complex Convertible Bonds and NagaCity Walk Convertible Bonds issued to him in 2016. The TSCLK Complex Convertible Bonds were originally issued to him following the acquisition of his former company TSC Inc by NagaCorp.TSC holds the rights to the neighboring TSCLK Complex, better known as Naga2, which launched late last year. The NagaCity Walk Convertible Bonds relate to a separate deal which saw NagaCorp acquire City Walk Inc, the holding company for the NagaCity Walk project that connects NagaWorld with Naga2. Mass growth leads the way for NagaWorld as revenue, profit soar in 1H19 NagaCorp CEO Chen Lip Keong has increased his shareholding in the company with the purchase of 5.4 million shares for a total consideration of HK$39.6 million.In a filing to the Hong Kong Stock Exchange overnight, NagaCorp said that Dr Chen had completed the on-market purchase of the shares, lifting his total stake in the company to approximately 2.86 billion, representing 65.84% of NagaCorp’s issued share capital RelatedPosts Load Morelast_img read more

Department for Education reports a 53 mean gender pay gap

first_imgThe Department for Education has reported a mean gender pay gap of 5.3% for hourly fixed pay across its UK-based workforce.The government department has recorded its snapshot data for 31 March 2017 in compliance with gender pay gap reporting regulations. The data has been published on the government’s gender pay gap viewing service.The median gender pay gap for hourly fixed pay is 5.9% at 31 March 2017.The mean gender pay gap for bonus pay, which is awarded based on performance, is 0.8% in the year up to 31 March 2017, and the median gender pay gap for bonuses is 0%. Over this period, 67% of men received bonus pay, compared to 72% of women.Just over half (53%) of employees in the highest pay quartile at the Department for Education are women, compared to 55% in the second quartile, 61% in the third quartile, and 61% in the lowest pay quartile.The Department for Education has introduced a range of measures to help close its gender pay gap and to support women in the workplace. This includes talent management schemes, a women’s equality network that runs upskilling events and talks, monitoring pay to identify and address any differences, and ensuring gender equality is a central part of the department’s diversity and inclusion strategy.The government department has also made changes to its recruitment process by anonymising the application process, and ensuring that interviewers have undergone unconscious bias training. Support to help women back into the workplace has also been made available, including job sharing or part-time opportunities, and updated guidance for staff returning from maternity or adoption leave.The gender pay gap reporting regulations require organisations with 250 or more employees to publish the difference between both the mean and median hourly rate of pay for male and female full-time employees; the difference between both the mean bonus pay and median bonus pay for male and female employees; the proportions of male and female employees who were awarded bonus pay; and the proportions of male and female full-time employees in the lower, lower middle, upper middle and upper quartile pay bands.The Government Equalities Office launched the online gender pay gap viewing service in April 2017 to allow the public to see the data that employers have published so far to fulfil their gender pay gap reporting obligations.Justine Greening, the secretary of state for education and minister for women and equalities, said: “I’m proud that the Department for Education has taken an important step in reporting its gender pay gap, setting an example to other employers as we build a stronger economy where success is defined by talent, not gender or circumstance.“The UK’s gender pay gap is at a record low, but we are committed to closing it. As one of the UK’s largest employers, the public sector has a vital role to play in leading the way to tackle the gender pay gap which is why the [Department for Education’s] step to publish our gender pay gap matters.“Through transparency we can find out what the situation is, where there is best practice and create pressure for more progress.”last_img read more

Sound Royalties Millions In Royalties Undistributed

first_img Sound Royalties: Millions In Royalties Undistributed How Much In Royalties Never Get To Artists? sound-royalties-millions-royalties-undistributed Email Facebook News Twitter Sound Royalties has been digging into revenues for artists where the trickle has mysteriously stoppedPhilip MerrillGRAMMYs Oct 6, 2017 – 4:13 pm Offering an innovative approach to royalty financing, Sound Royalties has announced its internal research indicates $14 million in artists’ royalties go undistributed.Sound Royalties CEO Alex Heiche estimates $15,000 is the average amount of undistributed royalties per artist, generalizing from all those his organization investigated. Even stars such as Mariah Carey and Pharrell Williams can be victimized by glitches in the system that stop the money from moving.Heiche said sometimes collecting societies “will freeze the payments, and they don’t necessarily notify everybody. If we see something is frozen, that’s a match.”Diligent digging into unpaid royalties lets Sound Royalties present itself as a potential agent for owners of rights to contract with to get musicians the money they are entitled to.Royalty Shares Of Eminem’s Songs Put Up For Salelast_img read more

Child First Authority A Baltimore Afterschool Program Celebrates Successes Seeks Funding

first_imgParents, children, and representatives from a Baltimore enrichment program gathered May 21 at Morgan State University to celebrate their achievements. They also called on Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake for more funds.“People saw and celebrated what happens with young people when you invest in them,” Child First Authority’s Executive Director Carol Reckling said about the event. “Our students were playing instruments, they were dancing, they did a play, they did jump rope, [spoke] Japanese. We had a student who is now in college who had been in our program when he was in middle school.”Child First offers afterschool and in-school services. The group meets for about two hours each day after school. Children have opportunities to get help with homework, take part in educational activities, and even get a free meal. They also go on cultural and educational field trips.Right now, the program is in 10 Baltimore city schools but would like to be in more. The group’s executive director says that members of the city council committed themselves to finding $4 million to increase services to city schools, but Rawlings-Blake hasn’t brought that plan to fruition.“The mayor is one who is not hearing. She made a promise that she would double funding for afterschool programs and she has not lived up to that promise,” Reckling said. “We actually came about at a time not unlike what’s happening now when people were saying we need more opportunities for youth.”The group has been around since 1994. Reckling said parents of children who participate in the program love it, but wish more children had access.Takira Robinson is a parent investment coordinator at Robert W. Coleman Elementary School. She has had the position for about a year, but started as a parent volunteer. Her son, who is in kindergarten, takes part in the program. Robinson said that the academic hour they offer each day helps give participants a leg up on classroom learning.“It makes it easier for the kids to ask questions, get an understanding,” she said. “When they go back to regular school it’s easier for them to learn.”At Robert W. Coleman, they serve over 100 students.“If we could get 10 schools to serve 100 more kids, that’s a thousand who would have something productive to do after school,” she said.It’s not just education, either. Robinson said that they plan lots of fun things for children and their families to take part in together.“The thing that the children really like is when we get together and do something rewarding for them. I don’t know if it’s the extra effort or they like to get free things,” she said.last_img read more

Join Tech Titans to Save Net Neutrality

first_img Democrats Won’t Stop Fighting for Net NeutralityBurger King Fries FCC in ‘Whopper Neutrality’ Ad Stay on target Happy Day of Action to Save Net Neutrality!Today’s event, organized by Fight for the Future, is a response to plans by the FCC to curb a free and open Internet.In 2015, President Obama led the reclassification of broadband as a telecom service under “Title II” of the Communications Act, rather than an information service.But the new Republican administration is, once again, regressing to previous policies, which enable companies like AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon to introduce “slow lanes” and force users to pay more for access to specific sites.Which is why it came as a huge surprise when AT&T announced plans to join the Day of Action, with one major caveat: It doesn’t actually support the FCC’s current rules—specifically the Title II reclassification.Fellow conglomerates Comcast and Verizon second that, saying that while approving of “strong, legally enforceable net neutrality protections,” they advocate for the reversal of the Title II designation.In the other corner, however, stand a number of organizations and activists—including titans Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, and Netflix—fighting for your right to party on the Internet.The list of participants reads like a who’s who of the Web: Etsy, Kickstarter, Twitter, Vimeo, GitHub, Internet Association, Reddit, Y Combinator, Mozilla, Pornhub, ACLU (American Civil Liberties Union), Airbnb, BitTorrent, BoingBoing, Change.org, Code Academy, Creative Commons, Dropbox, Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Foursquare, iFixit, Imgur, Medium, Opera, Pinterest, Sonos, Spotify, ThinkGeek, Tumblr (a surprise, since the Yahoo-owned network is owned by Verizon), and Yelp.And that’s just a few of the partners listed on Fight for the Future’s website.Today’s protest, which comes five days before the first public comment deadline on the FCC’s proposal, is a concerted effort to stop Internet service providers (ISPs) and the government from regulating the Web.To join the Day of Action, sign up online with your full name and email address.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

Update At the polling stations to vote

first_imgPeople are turning up in numbers to cast their vote in this year’s local municipal elections, taking place today.Municipal elections are held every five years to elect councillors who will be responsible for governing a municipality for the next five years.Voting stations around town and in surrounding rural areas are open until 7pm tonight.If you have not already made your way to a polling station to make your mark next to your political party of choice, then do it now before it’s too late! The future of the country is in your hands!DID YOU KNOW? WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite WebsiteWebsiteWebsite Click on the words highlighted in red to read more on this and related topics.If you are reading this on your cellphone and there are telephone numbers provided in the text, you can call these simply by clicking on them.To receive news links via WhatsApp.For the latest news, visit our webpage or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Join us there!last_img read more

Vatican bank profits soar as recovery reform continue

first_imgVATICAN CITY (AP) — The Vatican bank said Monday its profit soared by more than 20 times last year as it recovered from a trading loss and continued its reform process away from its scandal-marred past.The bank, officially called the Institute for Religious Works, said it earned 69.3 million euros ($77.37 million) in 2014, up from 2.9 million euros the previous year.Its net trading result jumped to 36.7 million euros from a loss of 16.5 million euros in 2013, when it lost money on investments and saw the value of its gold holdings drop. New Valley school lets students pick career-path academies Ex-FBI agent details raid on Phoenix body donation facility Top Stories Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Comments   Share   Milstead says best way to stop wrong-way incidents is driving sober Profits were also boosted by a drop in operating costs. In 2013, operating expenses jumped by some 8 million euros as it paid outside consultants to help review its client base and bring it into compliance with anti-money-laundering norms.That review resulted in some 4,600 accounts being closed, either because they were dormant or because clients no longer fit the revised client base approved by the bank’s board, which include religious orders, Catholic institutions, clerics, employees or former employees of the Vatican, as well as embassies and diplomats accredited to the Holy See.Bank President Jean-Baptiste de Franssu said the bank’s focus now is to improve services to the remaining 15,181 account holders and offering low-risk asset management services.One area that is out of the picture for now is de Franssu’s proposal for the Holy See to invest some assets in a Luxembourg-based investment scheme with variable capital known as a SICAV. Pope Francis nixed the proposal earlier this year, Italy’s La Stampa newspaper reported.De Franssu was named president last summer as the bank, which has been caught up in money-laundering probes over the years by Italian magistrates, began the second phase of a reform process aimed at cleaning up its operations. Parents, stop beating yourself up Sponsored Stories The difference between men and women when it comes to painlast_img read more

AP PhotoRoss D Franklin

first_img(AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin) The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelo The Arizona Cardinals need a new head coach.After firing first-year coach Steve Wilks on Monday, the team begins a coaching search for the second consecutive offseason. Team president Michael Bidwill said Monday that the Cardinals will be somewhat secretive about their actions in what he characterized as a competitive process.As we do our best to piece together reports from around the league combined with contextual clues, we’re keeping track of potential names to watch for as the next coach of the Cardinals. Dan Campbell — Saints assistant head coach/tight ends coach98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s John Gambadoro reported Campbell is set to interview with the Cardinals on Saturday.On Sunday, Schefter reported that the two sides completed the interview Saturday night.Campbell, 42, has been with the Saints as an assistant coach since 2016. Prior to his time in New Orleans, Campbell worked for the Dolphins from 2010-15, taking over as interim head coach in 2015 following the team’s firing of Joe Philbin. He compiled a 5-7 record as the interim.Last year, Campbell reportedly interviewed for the offensive coordinator position with the Minnesota Vikings. John DeFilipo ended up getting the job, but was later fired in the season.In addition to the Cardinals, the Browns and Packers have reportedly also interviewed with Campbell.Zac Taylor — Rams quarterbacks coachMultiple reports surfaced on Dec. 31 indicating that the Cardinals were the first team to put in a formal request to interview Los Angeles Rams quarterback coach Zac Taylor. CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora added that Arizona “very likely won’t be the last” team to want to interview the former Nebraska QB. Here are a list of possible candidates to replace Steve Wilks:Has interviewed with CardinalsAdam Gase — Former Dolphins head coachESPN’s Adam Schefter on Tuesday reported former Miami Dolphins coach Adam Gase will interview with the Cardinals on Wednesday.Gase, 40, was fired Monday by the Dolphins after posting a 23-25 record in three seasons.The Dolphins gig was Gase’s first as a head coach.Gase is known as an offensive mind and was the offensive coordinator for the Denver Broncos and Chicago Bears before taking the Dolphins job in 2016.Jim Caldwell — former Lions and Colts head coachCaldwell interviewed with the Cardinals on Thursday, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter.So far, the former Detroit Lions (2014-17) and Indianapolis (2009-2011) head coach has the most NFL experience among those who have interviewed for Arizona’s job.Caldwell did not hold an NFL job in 2018.A defensive back by trade, the 63-year-old Caldwell has extensive experience as a quarterbacks coach in college and the NFL. He held quarterback assistant coaching duties with Penn State (1986-1992), the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (2001), the Colts (2002-08) and the Ravens (2012-13).The New York Jets announced Monday that they had interviewed Caldwell. Kingsbury, 39, has five years of heading coaching experience in college and compiled a 35-40 record with Texas Tech.Known as an offensive-minded, young, up-and-comer, as a college quarterback Kingsbury finished ninth in the Heisman Trophy voting in 2002. He played for three seasons in the NFL.Declined an interview requestMike McCarthy — Former Packers head coachMcCarthy’s name has been a popular one tossed around in the head coaching rumor mill, and Cardinals president Michael Bidwill said on Dec. 31 that the team had reached out informally to those who were currently without jobs.But hat doesn’t mean the Cardinals have contacted McCarthy, and reports from some, including NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, indicate he has his eyes on jobs like the Jets and Browns but does not have interest in the Cardinals. That is apparently due to the desire to remain close to his wife’s high-school-aged children, who plan on finishing high school in Green Bay, added ESPN Packers reporter Rob Demovsky.McCarthy was fired by the Packers after their 20-17 loss to the Cardinals in Week 13. He was the head coach in Green Bay for 13 seasons.Eric Bieniemy — Chiefs offensive coordinator Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling Fox Sports and NFL Network’s Peter Schrager reported the day Wilks was fired that the Cardinals were among the teams to put in a request to interview Chiefs offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy.Two days after the Cardinals let Wilks go, Bieniemy had decided against interviewing with Arizona. He instead scheduled meetings with the Jets, Bucs, Dolphins and Bengals, reported NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.Bieniemy has led a Chiefs offense that ranked first in the NFL this season in points, yards, yards per play and passing touchdowns under head coach Andy Reid. This was Bieniemy’s first season as offensive coordinator after spending five seasons as the team’s running backs coach. 68 Comments   Share   On Monday, 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station‘s John Gambadoro reported the Cardinals interviewed Taylor.Related LinksNFL head coaching job tracker: Cards hire Kingsbury as next head coachTaylor was expected to meet with Arizona on Saturday, according to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport.Taylor was formerly with the Miami Dolphins from 2012 to 2015. He served as the assistant quarterbacks coach for a year before being promoted to quarterbacks coach. He held that position for a little more than three seasons before taking over interim offensive coordinator duties for the final five games of the 2015 season.Following his time in Miami, Taylor went to the University of Cincinnati as the quarterbacks coach for the Bearcats in 2016.He joined the Rams’ coaching staff in 2017 as an assistant wide receivers coach before being promoted to quarterbacks coach in 2018.Will interview with CardinalsKliff Kingsbury — USC offensive coordinatorThe title is somewhat misleading as Kingsbury was the coach of the Texas Tech Red Raiders in 2018. Kingsbury was not retained by Texas Tech at the end of the 2018 season but was hired on Dec. 5 to be the offensive coordinator of USC.USC had reportedly blocked NFL teams from interviewing Kingsbury, but on Monday, multiple reports indicated that Kingsbury would begin interviewing for NFL jobs. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport reported Tuesday that the Cardinals were going to interview Kingsbury that same day. Multiple reports stated Kingsbury met with the Jets on Monday. Top Stories last_img read more

Rep Julie Alexander schedules March district hours

first_img State Rep. Julie Alexander today announced her monthly district meetings for local residents. Constituents can meet one-on-one with Rep. Alexander to discuss their concerns.Upon announcing her March district hours, Rep. Alexander emphasized the importance of accountability and availability to her constituents.“Accessibility is important for good representation,” said Rep. Alexander. “I want to encourage anyone with questions, comments, or ideas about their state government to attend.”Rep. Alexander’s March district hours will be held on the following dates:Monday, March 13 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at the Jackson County Tower Building, 120 W. Michigan Ave. in Jackson;Friday, March 24 from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at the Jackson County Tower Building, 120 W. Michigan Ave. in Jackson.For those unable to attend, Rep. Alexander’s legislative office can be reached at any time by phone at (517) 373-1795 or by email at JulieAlexander@house.mi.gov. Tags: #SB Categories: Alexander Newscenter_img 07Mar Rep. Julie Alexander schedules March district hourslast_img read more

House approves Rep Hughes bill to allow Michigan drivers to warm up

first_img The Michigan House today approved state Rep. Holly Hughes’ bill allowing Michigan motorists to leave their vehicles warming up in private driveways.“I introduced this bill after a Michigan driver was issued a $128 ticket for leaving his car unattended in a driveway while warming his vehicle,” said Hughes, of Montague. “People across our nation were rightfully outraged when they learned people could be ticketed for warming up their cars. An officer testified in committee that $128 is not a lot of money. I’m sorry, that is someone’s grocery or gas money! This is a matter of personal property rights.”While the current rules may be well-intended, warming up a vehicle or cooling it down in the summer has been common practice in Michigan for probably as long as cars have had heaters and air conditioners.House Bill 4215 moves to the Senate for consideration.### 02May House approves Rep. Hughes bill to allow Michigan drivers to warm up their cars on private property Categories: Hughes Newslast_img read more

Statement from Rep Theis on auto insurance reform legislation falling short

first_img State Rep. Lana Theis, of Brighton, chair of the House Insurance Committee, issued a statement expressing her disappointment in the House voting down House Bill 5013“I am extremely disappointed that House Bill 5013, which makes much-needed changes to the current auto no-fault insurance system, fell short in the House.“I do not understand why some of my colleagues voted against no-fault reform which 80 percent of drivers across the state said was needed, and would have given drivers hundreds of dollars in premium savings. The very same people they represent – the people living paycheck to paycheck, facing financial hardships due to out-of-control insurance rates – will continue to be hurt by this broken system.“It remains clear just how much special interest groups politicize this very important issue. They profit off the status quo, make a quick buck and pretend like they have the interest of people in mind.“Hard-working families will have to continue to choose between putting food on the table or driving illegally, ensuring Michigan’s uninsured driver rate will continue to climb and ensuring all drivers across Michigan will continue to see their auto insurance premiums rise.“It’s been over 40 years, and still, nothing has been done to change a system that only benefits big players such as hospitals, trial lawyers and other well-funded special interest groups. It’s obvious, once again, nothing has changed in Lansing on this particular issue.“This legislation was never going to take away the unlimited personal injury protection coverage from anyone. It was simply giving drivers a choice – a choice they’ve never been able to make.“I want to thank all my colleagues who voted ‘yes’ on this measure – all of who had the same desire to deliver real, viable rate relief to their residents across the state.“With this legislation falling short, here’s what will happen:“Hospitals will continue to charge more for auto accident patients, trial lawyers will continue to make lavish livings off court cases, courtrooms will continue to be clogged, unlimited health care coverage will continue to be mandated and most importantly, auto insurance rates will only continue to go up.” Categories: Theis News 06Nov Statement from Rep. Theis on auto insurance reform legislation falling shortlast_img read more

Rep Alexander announces May office hours

first_img State Rep. Julie Alexander announced her monthly in-district office hours with local residents, emphasizing the importance of being available to the community.“I am committed to making state government accessible and accountable,” Rep. Alexander said. “I encourage anyone with questions or ideas about their state government to join me for conversation.”Rep. Alexander’s office hours will take place at the Jackson County Tower Building, 120 W. Michigan Ave. in Jackson at the following dates and times:Friday, May 11 from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m.;Monday, May 14 from 3 to 4 p.m.;Friday, May 18 from 12 to 1 p.m.; andFriday, May 25 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.Rep. Alexander will also sponsor a special Milk Break meeting at Napoleon Café, 6816 Brooklyn Road in Napoleon on Friday, May 25 from 9 to 10 a.m.No appointments are necessary. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Alexander at 517-373-1795 or via email at JulieAlexander@house.mi.gov. Categories: Alexander News 27Apr Rep. Alexander announces May office hourslast_img read more

Rep Glenn sets local office hours

first_img“As your representative in Lansing, remaining open and accessible to you is one of my top priorities,” Glenn said. “I look forward to discussing thoughts, ideas, and concerns with residents of our community, and I welcome anyone to attend.”No appointments are necessary to attend office hours. Those unable to attend may contact Rep. Glenn’s office at (517) 373-1791 or AnnetteGlenn@house.mi.gov. State Rep. Annette Glenn announced her first set of in-district office hours for 2019. The representative will be available at the following times and locations:Friday, Feb. 87:30 to 8:30 a.m. at H&H Bakery and Restaurant, 200 S. Mable St. in Pinconning; and9 to 10 a.m. at Nori’s Restaurant, 963 W. Midland Road in Auburn. Friday, Feb. 157:30 to 8:30 a.m. at Coffee Chaos, 6201 Jefferson Ave. in Midland. Categories: Annette Glenn News,News 05Feb Rep. Glenn sets local office hourslast_img read more