KINGS COUNTY: Greenwich Connector/Trunk 1 Intersection Motorists are advised that effective Monday, June 14 to Saturday,July 31 intersection improvements will be carried out at theintersection of Trunk 1 and the Greenwich Connector (Route 358),Greenwich. There will be intermittent lane closures and traffic control willconsist of traffic control persons. Work will take place between 6 a.m. and 7 p.m. Motorists mayexperience delays and are advised to use alternate routes wherepossible. Local area office: 902-542-6344 Fax: 902-542-6342 -30-
New Delhi: The black waters of the Yamuna river on its Delhi stretch have been declared unfit for drinking and bathing purposes, but that did not deter 65-year-old newspaper hawker Ashok Upadhyay to do his bit in protecting the river from further pollution. On the last Sunday of every month, Upadhyay comes to the Chhath ‘ghat’ (steps) of the river near ITO to clear the waste accumulated on the banks. He is joined by about 100 other newspaper hawkers of the city who have taken upon themselves to be the change that they want to see. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! Before setting up the ‘Maa Shri Yamuna Seva Samiti’ group of volunteers in October last year, who are also referred to as Friends of Yamuna, Upadhyay, while on his way to the newspaper centre every morning, used to go alone to pick up the trash on the riverside. He also planted saplings near the banks to make it look greener. Some of his family members and friends started joining him in the cleanliness drive and as the group grew bigger, they decided to devote at least three hours (between 8-11 a.m.) on the last Sunday of every month to the cause. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killed “After the death of my mother, I was broken up from the inside. One day I realised that Yamuna Ji is also our Goddess (‘Ma’) and I must take care of it and it is our duty to clean the river,” Upadhyay told IANS. “I felt that my late parents would be happy to see me serving Ma Yamuna. So I started doing the cleaning job at my level. I felt that the river, which we consider our Goddess needs to be saved,” he said. “We bring tools such as brooms and gloves from our own houses. We also do not want any monetary help from people or from any government. What we actually need is manpower and pure dedication towards cleaning the river,” he added. After collecting all the waste from the river banks, they dump the collected garbage in the dumpers provided by the East Delhi Municipal Corporation. “We have plans to expand the drive once more people join us. The work on Chhath ghat is just the start and bigger things are coming. It is in our capable hands to make this change,” said B.N. Singh, a member of the group. According to Asha Chaubey, another member who has joined the cleanliness drive, it is very important for people to come forward and do their bit for the environment. “It really saddens me to see the conditions of our rivers. People have mistaken our water bodies as garbage dumping areas,” Chaubey lamented. “With the groundwater depletion in various parts of the country, keeping our rivers clean is the need of the hour and people should start taking it seriously before it is too late,” Chaubey told IANS. The newspaper hawkers are now planning to plant more trees on the banks of the Yamuna and their only appeal to people is not to throw any garbage into the river. Although the Yamuna river flows only for 54 km through Delhi, from Palla to Badarpur, the 22-km stretch from Wazirabad to Okhla, which is less than 2 per cent of the river length of 1,370 kilometres from Yamunotri to Prayagraj, accounts for about 76 per cent of the pollution level in the river, according to the findings of a committee. Though housands of crores have been spent to clean the river, the pollution levels have shown no serious signs of decline. The total expenditure incurred on river conservation under the Yamuna Action Plan (YAP) alone, introduced in 1993, has surpassed Rs 1,500 crore.
OTTAWA – Tax experts say Finance Bill Morneau’s plan to adjust his controversial tax proposals is easier said than done.Morneau has tried to calm the anger surrounding the federal government’s small business tax package with some hints on how he might address some of the concerns.But tax experts who have studied the government’s tax proposals warn that while there are some options, delivering on many of Morneau’s tweaks will be challenging.Even Finance Department officials have acknowledged at least one expected change is posing a major problem.Earlier this week, as a 75-day consultation period on the three-part plan came to a close, Morneau conceded that “changes are going to be required” to the proposals he announced in mid-July.Morneau said the government’s next steps will guided by the several “key principles” based on the concerns it received during the consultation.He has offered a few clues on where some adjustments to the proposals might be made.The highlighted concerns that Morneau has signalled he will seek to fix include: avoiding any change that would complicate the intergenerational transfer of family farms; ensuring women entrepreneurs will be able to put away money within their firms for maternity leaves; and making sure businesses won’t be subjected to additional, onerous administrative work.Morneau also said this week that he would make sure angel investors and venture capitalists — whose financing so often helps start-up firms grow — won’t face “unintended consequences” from the tax changes.The finance minister has tried to reassure owners of farming and fishing businesses on the family succession issue by saying “technical fixes” may be on the way. There are concerns the reforms could add significant costs for those who seek to keep these businesses in the family.“Is the challenge that they’re dealing with difficult? No question,” said Kim Moody, a director at Moodys Gartner Tax Law.“And, frankly, I don’t have any easy suggestion for them, either, because I’ve racked my brain in terms of how they could solve what they’re trying to solve.”Officials from Morneau’s own department have also admitted that finding a fix to the succession issue hasn’t been easy.“We’re still struggling to find another approach to this and, to the extent, when we’ve been talking to farm groups and others we’ve really been trying the emphasize the point that we’re looking for comments on this,” Brian Ernewein, the department’s general director of legislation in the tax policy branch, told a Senate committee Tuesday.“I can’t say that we’ve…looked at all the submissions because most of them just landed with us in the last couple of days with the consultation period closing.“We’re hopeful that there’s something in there that will give us inspiration.”Morneau argues the proposals are designed to create a fairer tax system, especially for those in the so-called middle class. He also hopes the tax reforms will unlock cash for business investment and help lift the country’s “productive capacity.”His proposal package includes restrictions on the ability of business owners to reduce their tax rate by sprinkling their income to family members in lower tax brackets, even if those family members do not contribute to the company.Morneau has also proposed limits on the use of private corporations to make passive investments that are unrelated to the company. Another change would limit the ability of business owners to convert regular income of a corporation into capital gains, which are typically taxed at a lower rate.Critics of the plan say it would hurt entrepreneurs who take personal financial risks when they decide to open a business, hire staff, save for retirement, save for maternity leave and sock away funds for economic downturns.Tax experts, including Moody, do see a couple of ways the government can make changes to the reforms to fit the principles Morneau laid out this week.To address a number of those issues, Moody suggested the government “dramatically simplify” the income-sprinkling rules by extending the existing regime to only allow business owners to split income with family members aged 24 and above. He also recommended that the system should continue to allow income transfers with spouses.“I think that would be a big one,” Moody said.“What they’ve got right now is just a whole bunch of complexity and a whole bunch of uncertainty, and both of those just are not good policy tenets.”Jack Mintz, a tax expert with the University of Calgary who has been critical of the proposals, agrees that dropping spouses from the legislation and raising the age of family members eligible for sprinkling — even to 28 or 30 — would solve some of the problems.On the succession issue, Mintz said changes are needed to help families avoid double taxation, but making it happen will be difficult.Mintz said some of Morneau’s other potential fixes will also be complicated to pull off, including making sure the reforms will enable women to save for leaves through their corporations.He said there are many reasons why someone would want to retain earnings in a company and that it will be difficult to carve out selected categories.“He’s just putting a band-aid on a bad proposal,” Mintz said.Moody said he didn’t know how the proposals could be adjusted for women business owners. One possibility, he noted, could be making women entrepreneurs eligible for Employment Insurance.When it comes to ensuring angel investors and venture capitalists are not hit by unintended consequences of the changes, Mintz said the government would likely have to eliminate the passive investment income proposal altogether.He said these investors would be “heavily hit” by the new passive income rules.“I think (the proposal) is completely unworkable,” he said.“I would drop it altogether, but I suspect that’s not necessarily going to happen.”Follow @AndyBlatchford on Twitter
CALGARY – A Canadian environmental group wants a United Nations agency to warn the federal government about the possible impact of holding Winter Olympic events in Banff National Park.The Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society has written a letter to UNESCO saying ski events at Lake Louise could threaten the values that have made the park a World Heritage Site.“We are asking that the World Heritage Committee make a recommendation to Canada or a statement against large-scale events or development that would have negative long term impacts in the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks World Heritage Site,” said the letter sent in April.A feasibility study presented to Calgary city council, which is considering bidding for the 2026 Winter Games, suggests Lake Louise should be considered as a venue for ski speed events.Concerns have been raised about how the park would be affected by crowds attending the races, as well as by grandstands, media facilities and other infrastructure that would be required.An Olympic bid committee has suggested that Nakiska ski resort might be an alternative. Nakiska is outside the park and was the site for ski events during the 1988 Winter Games.However, a spokesman for the bid committee acknowledged that Lake Louise is still in the mix.“They’re exploring all options,” said Chris Dornan. “Nothing’s been finalized. It’s a very early stage.”Banff National Park is part of the Canadian Mountain Parks World Heritage Site that includes Banff, Jasper, Kootenay and Yoho national parks and Mount Robson, Mount Assiniboine and Hamber provincial parks.“With rugged mountain peaks, icefields and glaciers, alpine meadows, lakes, waterfalls, extensive karst cave systems and deeply incised canyons, the Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks possess exceptional natural beauty,” says UNESCO’s description.UNESCO monitors its sites and can request member nations to report on them and propose ways to fix problems. The federal government is currently developing plans to improve Wood Buffalo National Park after UNESCO raised concerns about it.The letter says Banff is already overloaded with visitors and carrying as much infrastructure as it can stand.“Visitation to the Park has skyrocketed and the government of Canada has failed to safeguard the ecological integrity of the area. The park is bursting at the seams, and crowding, traffic and human-wildlife conflict have become major problems,” it says.“The scale, scope, and cachet the Olympic Games have will greatly and inevitably (exacerbate) the pressures and impacts the park is already challenged with.”The letter points to a 2016 Parks Canada assessment that suggests Banff’s ecosystems are only in fair condition.Dornan said no official venue proposals will be made for a while. He said concerns such as those raised in the letter will be heard.“There’s a lot of parties involved here. We’re listening to everybody.”Lake Louise holds regular World Cup ski races.A non-binding citywide plebiscite is expected for the late fall on whether Calgary should proceed with a bid.The Parks and Wilderness Society said it’s not opposed to the Olympics, just using national parks as a venue. It warned that doing so would increase controversy around an event that is intended to bring people together.“The idea that the Olympics may be held in a national park and World Heritage Site is a contentious issue and will divide Canadians,” the letter says.— By Bob Weber in Edmonton. Follow him on Twitter at @row1960
Food Bank For New York City, the city’s major hunger-relief organization working to end food poverty throughout the five boroughs, will honor its partners in the fight against hunger — Tom Colicchio and Lori Silverbush, Stavros Niarchos Foundation and Sandra Lee-Simply Living Publishing — at the 13th Annual Can Do Awards Dinner, presented by Bank of America, on Wednesday, April 21st, at Cipriani Wall Street.Mario Batali and Susan Cahn, long-time Food Bank supporters and the 2013 Can Do Award honorees, serve as this year’s Honorary Chairs.Nashville’s Grammy Award-winning country music group, Little Big Town will be the special musical guest, bringing some of their biggest hits to the Can Do Awards. More than 600 guests are expected to fill the room in support of Food Bank For New York City’s fight against hunger. The evening unites an extraordinary array of people including musicians, artists, actors, culinary greats and other caring New Yorkers in the fight to end hunger in New York City.“Tonight’s gala celebrates our city’s diversity and honors the dedication and perseverance of each of you in the fight against hunger, wherever you find it in our little big town,” said Margarette Purvis, President and CEO of Food Bank For New York City. “It is your support that allows us to connect people with solutions. I applaud our honorees for their courage, their commitment, and for providing a voice for many who go unheard. When others say I can’t, you always respond, I “Can Do.” Food Bank For New York City is very grateful for your service.”Can Do Honorees Tom Colicchio and Lori Silverbush are being honored for their commitment to giving a voice to the millions who struggle to afford food, and for shining a light on the inequalities that exist in our society, thus inspiring many to action. Together, they have been a leading force for change and true advocates for those struggling to put food on the table every day.Can Do Honoree Stavros Niarchos Foundation has supported Food Bank For New York City’s hunger-relief efforts since 2009. In 2011, The Foundation made a transformational gift to help create a technology solution that enables Food Bank to connect New Yorkers in need with emergency food and other services. The initiative tracks New Yorkers accessing food and other services through Food Bank’s network of 1,000 community partners. The project will play a key role as part of Food Bank’s strategic vision to create networks of organizations connecting clients with food and other benefits in an effort to reduce and eliminate the “meal gap” (the city’s official measure of food insecurity).This year’s Corporate Can Do Honoree is Sandra Lee-Simple Living Publishing, who has made ending hunger a cause she is deeply committed to, having known first-hand what it is like to live with the worry of not knowing where a next meal was coming from. Sandra has partnered with Food Bank on many campaigns over the years, including helping raise critical support for Food Bank’s Sandy Relief efforts. In 2013, she hosted the World’s Largest Bake Sale, which raised more than $50,000 for Food Bank’s vital programs.The Can Do Awards Presenting Sponsor is Bank of America. The evening will include a cocktail reception, dinner, and both a live auction hosted by Lydia Fenet of Christie’s Auction House, and an exciting silent auction.The Can Do Awards Dinner is instrumental in helping provide support for the 1.5 million New Yorkers who rely on Food Bank programs and services, including one in five children. New York’s most vulnerable families have lost more than 134 million meals as a result of the November 2013 cuts to SNAP (formerly known as food stamps). Food pantries and soup kitchens have confronted additional need without an adequate supply of food. Can Do celebrates what each of us ‘can do’ to help fight hunger in New York City. Since its inception, the Can Do Awards have raised more than 12 million dollars, helping to provide 60 million meals for New Yorkers in need. Every dollar donated to Food Bank For New York City helps provide five meals.Tables/Tickets can be purchased by calling the Can Do Awards Benefit Office at 212-867-1777, by emailing email@example.com/ or click here.
By Hinna SheikhRabat – As many as 23 people are dead and numerous others are wounded during Friday prayers in the tribal district on Mohmand in Northern Pakistan.Whilst attending Friday prayers in a mosque located in the northwestern village of Anbar Tehsil, 23 worshippers were killed whilst various others were wounded in the attack. The village lies on the border with Afghanistan, where the Pakistani army have been combatting the Pakistani Taliban.According to the news agency Reuters, that the bomber shouted ‘Allahu akbar’ (God is greatest) before detonating himself. Eyewitnesses further reported that the majority of casualties came after part of the mosque collapsed in on the worshippers.Responsibility for the attack is yet to be claimed, but it is known that the Pakistani Taliban attack targets such as schools, mosques and courts.Pakistani Prime Minister, Nawaz Sharif, has come out and condemned the attacks and further reinforced the country’s commitment to combatting terrorism.In June 2014, the army launched an operation to rid the country of its armed group located in the northwestern region. Since such initiatives, security in the country has improved, with terrorist incident dropping from 125 in 2014 to 74 in 2015.The country has struggled with terrorism for many years and with the rise of ISIL (the Islamic State Iraq and Levant), groups have started pledging their allegiance to them. Last month in the city of Quetta, 74 people were killed in an attack against the regions lawyers, claimed by ISIL.
In this Saturday, Nov. 9, 2013 photo, a bowl of free items is shown in a tent set up by Generation Opportunity, a national conservative organization that targets young adults, outside Sun Life Stadium before the start of an NCAA college football game between Miami and Virginia Tech, in Miami Gardens, Fla. The 100-yard stretch of free pizza and party tents, is also a carefully crafted strategy aimed at getting students to opt out of President Barack Obama’s controversial new health law. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee) by Kelli Kennedy, The Associated Press Posted Jan 1, 2014 7:55 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Efforts to get young invincibles to sign up for health insurance ramp up-but are they working? MIAMI – The so-called “young invincibles” are so important to the success of the Affordable Care Act that supporters and detractors are spending millions to reach them with racy ads, social media campaigns and celebrity endorsements. The president is even (gasp) asking their mothers to help convince them to sign up for insurance.The federal government and states running their own exchanges have launched marketing efforts for this crucial demographic of healthy young adults, but it’s unclear if the messages are getting through.Eric Fisher, a 28-year-old from Salt Lake City, said he still hasn’t seen any of the social media campaigns — one of which targets Utah residents with images of people snowboarding and rock climbing.He tried to sign up online when the federal marketplace first launched but couldn’t because of the long wait times and other website glitches. He said he’ll try again at some point. He added that the historic health care overhaul isn’t a topic he and his friends spend much time talking about.“It’s not like a coffee table conversation,” Fisher said.According to a recent Harvard survey, many of Fisher’s peers are undecided.A poll by Harvard’s Institute of Politics shows about 40 per cent of people between the ages of 18 and 29 are on the fence about whether to sign up, with the rest split fairly evenly between those likely to enrol and those who probably won’t.The survey of 2,000 young adults was conducted from Oct. 30 to Nov. 11, after the first month of enrolment on the health care exchanges and when sign-up problems were at their peak.Consisting of healthy college students and twenty-somethings, the so-called “young invincible” demographic is the holy grail of the Affordable Care Act. Insurers need their participation to offset the costs of covering older, sicker Americans. If enough young people decide not to buy insurance through state or federal marketplaces, it could throw off the market’s equilibrium and cause insurance rates to rise dramatically the following year.Federal officials haven’t released detailed demographic information on who’s enrolled so far, so it’s not clear how many young people have signed up.Ad campaigns in many states are courting undecided young adults. In Colorado, a non-profit group created a series of provocative “got insurance?” ads. One features a blonde standing next to a life-sized cut-out of celebrity heartthrob Ryan Gosling with the caption, “Hey girl, you’re excited about easy access to birth control and I’m excited about getting to know you. She got insurance.” Another touting “Brosurance” encourages men doing a keg stand not to tap into their beer money to cover medical bills. When the exchange launched, models wearing nothing but underwear and “Get Covered” signs passed out fliers in downtown Denver.Arizona and Utah ads targeting weekend warriors and other athletes note the risks of getting hurt without health insurance.Shmuel Johnson, who works in Los Angeles at a small sound studio, hasn’t seen any ads or perused the state’s health exchange.“There’s this elitist attitude that (politicians) think they know what’s better for us than ourselves and that’s part of why I take issue with this. I’m being forced to do something that’s not necessarily in my best interest,” said Johnson, a 31-year-old who’s never had insurance. “I don’t need insurance, man. I’m healthy.”He’ll wait until March to enrol and says he’ll select the cheapest, lowest-level of coverage available simply to avoid the fine. Experts expect many young adults, like Johnson, to wait until March.In 2012, 18 million 19 to 34-year-olds lacked insurance — or 27 per cent of all people in that age group, according to U.S. census data.The Obama administration is making the rounds on college campuses to encourage people to sign up and has enlisted celebrities including Lady Gaga and Kerry Washington in its Get Covered social media campaign. Jennifer Hudson and Olivia Wilde were featured in skits pushing the Affordable Care Act on the humourwebsite FunnyorDie.com. In the latest push, an Obama impersonator encourages young adults to tell their friends to get covered in an online rap.The president himself recently told a group of mothers visiting the Oval Office that: “Moms can tell young people who think they’re invincible that they’re not and prod them to at least get information.”California state exchange officials even tried to persuade women to pay the first month’s premium as a Christmas gift to their adult children and grandchildren.Experts say engaging young invincibles requires a nuanced touch. They prefer to talk with their peers about pragmatic things they can do to impact the world, but aren’t interested in ideological debates, said Morley Winograd, author of 3 books on millenials, including “Millenial Momentum.”But the cost of coverage will play the biggest role, experts say.More than 3 million young adults have health insurance thanks to the Affordable Care Act because they remained on their parents’ health insurance, according to the feds. The law extended the age that children can stay on their parents’ plan to 26.Joshua Benson stayed on his parents’ insurance until he turned 26 last year. After that, Benson, who had his pancreas removed and needs daily insulin for his Type 1 diabetes, struggled to find coverage. He was either denied or quoted $2,000 monthly premiums, said the South Florida resident, who works part-time as a grocery store cashier.He recently enrolled in a platinum plan with no deductible that costs him $170 a month and even covers his endocrinologist. The federal government kicks in another $200 a month.Benson says he was amused by the Funnyordie.com skits, but said many other ads “are focusing more on getting our attention than actually giving us any valid information.”On the other side of the aisle, groups that oppose the health overhaul such as Generation Opportunity are spreading their message at college tailgate parties. The organization gained a following after disturbing-by-design social media videos featuring a creepy Uncle Sam popping up at gynecological and proctology exams went viral. The tagline urged young adults to keep big government out of their personal health decisions.The group’s recent tailgate party at the University of Miami had all the markings of the South Beach club scene: hired glossy-haired models handing out swag, free alcohol and a sea of sweaty twenty-somethings bumping and grinding to a live DJ.Mette Jensen, a 22-year-old student, says she supports “Obamacare” even though she signed a petition against it.“Well, why not. I love free stuff.”__Follow Kelli Kennedy on Twitter at www.twitter.com/kkennedyAP__Associated Press writers Brady McCombs in Salt Lake City, Utah and Gillian Flaccus from Los Angeles contributed to this report.
“The Secretary-General extends his heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and to the Government and people of Cameroon and wishes a speedy recovery to those injured in the terrorist attacks,” says a statement issued yesterday evening by the UN Spokesperson. The Secretary-General, adds the statement, reiterates his support for the Government of Cameroon and countries of the region, encouraging them to further strengthen their cooperation in addressing the threat posed by Boko Haram, as well as ensuring strict compliance with international humanitarian, human rights and refugee law. According to the media, two women detonated bombs attached to their bodies in crowded markets, killing at least 13 people.
Transport News Brief Week 15, Tuesday 10 April 2007 Mixed fortunes in March van and truck registrations Figures last week from the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders show the rolling year’s total van and truck registrations down 1.2% to 379,083, but still strong compared to the five year average. Medium van registrations are up 74.7% to 43,092 and truck registration are down 25.5% to 52,036 for the rolling year to the end of March. “We’re seeing structural changes in the van market as some previously light vans, for example Astra and Caddy, move into the medium sector and some operators use heavy vans as a more hassle-free alternative to heavier trucks,” said Christopher Macgowan, SMMT chief executive. “Truck registration comparisons with last Spring are of limited value as the bungled introduction of digital tachographs on 1 May 2006 caused massive market distortion in the months immediately before. Overall, the immediate economic outlook is quite bright and we’re confident that this will be another good year.” More from Robin Dickeson on +44 (0)2 073 449 222 or firstname.lastname@example.org New Drivers’ Hours law – simple, flexible analysis The new Drivers’ Hours Law start on 11 April and many drivers and operators will be subject to new rulings on Weekly Rest criteria and definitions for key terms such as ‘carriage by road’. At this year’s CV Show Stoneridge Electronics will run free seminars on its stand nr 5221. These will detail the effect of the changes and the firm says say that both of its tachograph analysis products Optac+ (digital tachograph analysis) and Optac2 (Mixed Drive Analysis) have been upgraded to include the new legislation. More from Sandra McKillen on +44 (0)8 000 731 577or email@example.com Vehicle speeds in Great Britain: 2006 The Department for Transport just published National Statistics of vehicle speeds in Great Britain in 2006. These show the speeds at which drivers travel in free-flow conditions across the road network and indicate the degree to which different groups broke speed limit law in 2006 compared to the year before. There are wide variations between driver groups and their behaviour on different road types, but in the main seems slightly more drivers of motor bikes, cars and trucks stick to speed limits. More from ID=5130454&s=147244029 href=”http://rd.bcentral.com/ ID=5130454&s=147244029″>www.dft.gov.uk Fontaine says it had the drop on trailer report Following Jost’s announcement of what it believed is the first report on dropped trailers – accidents when a tractor looses its trailer, Fontaine says it got there first. The firm published a report in 2005 following a survey that questioned 1,053 drivers from the UK, France, Germany and Benelux in March that year. More from Katie Burbidge on +44 (0)8 453 455 606 or Katie.firstname.lastname@example.org Knorr-Bremse launches ‘next generation’ kit CV show Knorr-Bremse will be launch its next generation products, including its trailer electronic bra king system, Tebs G2 and a trailer information module, Tim G2 on its stand 5480 at the CV Show in Birmingham. Visitors can try a “larger than life” working model of Tim G2 and see the firm’s new Neo System Diagnostics, designed to help workshops deal professionally with all common truck and trailer electronic braking systems. Knorr-Bremse will also have its new Trailer Handbook and slack adjuster catalogue available. The firm won a European Excellence Award last autumn and earlier this year reported record growth, taking its earnings to a record Ã¢â€š¬3.1bn. More from Rebecca Stone on +44 (0)1 179 846 207 or email@example.com New cab conversion from Hatcher Hatcher Components plans to launch a brand new cab conversion design on its stand 5590 at the CV Show. “We’ve chosen this year’s event to show a brand new cab conversion design and several new innovative product developments,” said the firm’s Brian Getley, who says Hatcher is Europe’s leading cab conversion and aerodynamics specialist. “It has a proven track record of pioneering product innovation and delivering quality parts on time, no matter what the distance.” More from Brian Getley on +44 (0)1 728 723 675 or firstname.lastname@example.org Van drivers shamed but want to do better Van drivers cause more than two-thirds of the accidents they are involved in but there is hope – more than half want to improve driving skills in 2007, according to insurance firm Royal & SunAlliance’s own claim statistics. The data shows almost 60% of van drivers had caused an accident in the past 12 months, costing about £30m in claims and the firm says van drivers are Britain’s most feared drivers. A separate study of over 1,200 showed most UK van drivers planned to improve their behaviour on the road during 2007. More from www.fleetnews .co.uk CV Show debut for award-winning fleet tracking system AutoAlert will use its stand at the CV Show to launch what it says is an innovative combination of satellites and telecommunications technology. “This brings affordable vehicle tracking whether you have one, two or 50 vehicles or more,” says the firm’s Richard Harris. “Its our first time at the event and we’ll be show how our system allows you to monitor your vehicles even when you’re out in the field. Unlike existing technology, with AutoAlert you can monitor your vehicles simply and easily through your existing mobile telephone, with wide ranging reports available cost effectively using a standard web browser.” More from Richard Harris on +44 (0)2 073 947 457 or email@example.com Citygate upgrades Colindale VW centre Volkswagen retailer group Citygate is upgrading its retail centre in Colindale, London, making space for vans for the first time. It will offer ready-bodied vehicles, including tippers, drop siders, box vans and ready-racked panel vans. Citygate says it offers repair and maintenance deals and its workshops will be open from 0600 to 2200 from Monday to Friday, from 0800 to 1600 on Saturdays from 1000 to 1600 on Sundays. The upgrade should be finished in August this year and the site will stay open during the work. Citygate runs Volkswagen dealers across North West London, Buckinghamshire, Middlesex and Hertfordshire, employing 330 people. More from Christabel Saunders on +44 (0)1 189 395 900 or firstname.lastname@example.org New technology car transporter Car transporter firm Ryders says it will launch a new-generation and car transporter at the CV Show. The vehicle uses aircraft industry style aluminium honeycomb panels to cut unladen weights and so incerase payloads. The firm, which celebrates its 75th anniversary at the event, says it thinks this material has not been used before in the commercial vehicle industry. More from Colin Pinchen on +44 (0)1 519 334 338 or email@example.com Volvo delivers its first Euro 5s Volvo Bus says it has delivered its first batch of coaches to Euro 5 emission levels just a few months after Euro 4 levels became law. The Oxford Bus Company just took 10 Euro 5 Volvo B12Bs. These will produce 40% lower emissions than a Euro 4 coach. The firm will use the new 48 seat, Plaxton bodied coaches on its scheduled service to Heathrow airport. Each has a 420 bhp Volvo 12 litre engine driving through an I-Shift gearbox. Also each coach has a ‘Magic Floor’ lift at the front entrance for wheelchair access. Euro 5 emission levels are due to be a legal requirement from October 2009. Many continental operators are working to these standards to take advantage of ‘early uptake’ incentives like lower tolls and taxes on the mainland. More from Adrian Wickens on +44(0)1 926 414 518 or firstname.lastname@example.org RHA offers website deals The Road Haulage Association says that during the CV Show and then till the e end of June 2007, RHA Icon is offering a 10% discount on all orders based on enquiries received via its website, ID=5130453&s=147244029 href=”http://rd.bcentral.com/ ID=5130453&s=147244029″>www.iconvehiclesafety.co.uk “Nearly every week we are in the very pleasing position of having to recognize the improvements being made in the safe operation of vehicles,” says Grahame Cook, managing director. “At the CV Show this year Chamberlain Transport will be awarded its Gold Certificate, adding its name to the growing list of Icon Certificate holders.” Cook says increasing numbers of operators are getting real financial benefits from better driver training and safety. He hopes the deals he’s offering will help get the message to the entire industry. More from Grahame Cook on +44 (0)8 704 439 496 or email@example.com New chassis cab range from LDV at CV Show Van maker LDV says it will launch its new Maxus chassis cab range at the CV Show in April. “This is by far our most comprehensive display of Maxus vehicles, says Steve Miller, marketing director. “We’ll show vehicles never seen before, including our new chassis cab range. The CV Show is always a home-coming for LDV and we’re sure we won’t disappoint visitors this year.” The show will also be the first time for new owners GAZ International and GAZ president, Eric Eberhardson will be there with chairman Martin Leach and chief executive Steve Young. More from Steve Miller on +44 (0)1 213 223 089 or firstname.lastname@example.org RHA Training Conference goes to Jaguar The Road Haulage Assaocaition says its 10th Training Conference, on Thursday 10 May will b at Birmingham’s Jaguar Cars. “Training is now one a vital issue for today’s road transport operator,” says the RHA. “With profit margins tighter than ever, a skilled workforce really can mean make or break for even a small transport operation.” Chaired by Graham Westcott, chairman of the Association’s Careers and Training Committee, the agenda for the day covers a wide range of topics, including a Policy Update from the Driving Standards Agency. All aspects of the Driver CPC will come under scrutiny from a DSA-led presentation covering “What you need to know” followed by “What you need to do” from Ian Hetherington of Skills for Logistics. More from Ruth Pott on +44 (0)1 932 841 515 or email@example.com Irtec’s first four National Awards Alan Halton, John Pitt, Ian Smith and Robert Mitchell are the first four Irtec licence holders to win the irtec National Awards, run by the Institute of Road Transport Engineers. The four winners will collect their prizes on the Society of Operations Engineers stand 5731 at the CV show, on Tuesday 24 April at 17.00. More from Gareth Jenkins on +44 (0)2 076 301 111 or firstname.lastname@example.org Maywood at the NEC again Maywood Equipment Group, on stand 5035 at the CV Show and ATS have a bigger space than last year. “We’ve decided to go back to one large stand rather than have a smaller one in both halls, said Trevor Homewood, managing director. “We feel we can give better care and attention to our visitors as well as the fact that all our staff will be available in one place. Our stand will cater for both car and commercial product customers.” The firm will show a range of workshop and garage equipment products including items from both the Finkbeiner and Hofmann ranges of vehicle lifts with capacities up to 50 tonnes. More from Trevor Homewood on +44 (0)1 622 718 044 or email@example.com Allison Transmission to reveal truck test results at CV Show Allison says it plans to use the CV show to reveal whole-life cost comparisons between auto and manual truck gearboxes. The firm, on stand nr 2356 says it has analysed a constant stream of data including fuel consumption, down time and operating hours from vehicles operating in the same on-highway application. “We have some very interesting results,” promises Riccardo Sardelli, UK area manager. More from Eilidh Forster + 44 (0)1 295 277 050 or firstname.lastname@example.org Luxi Lighting comes to CV Show Show debutants Luxi Lighting, on stand 5201 says it will show its new LED interior lamps for refrigerated vehicles and a cost efficient harness system for trailers. More from John Grote on +34 946 270 360 or email@example.com Battery tester forms centre-piece of Rohart’s ATS debut Automotive Trade Show newcomer Rohart Enterprises will present live demonstrations of its Electro-pro battery tester on stand 1428. The firm says that while vehicle reliability is improving, electrical faults are increasing – and the battery is the main culprit. The beauty of Electro-pro is its ability to identify a flat battery as either ‘Flat / OK or Flat / Bad’ says Rohart. More from Tony Benson on +44 (0)8 450 956 751 or firstname.lastname@example.org Merridale unveils combination fuel management dispenser. New products from MIS Fuel Monitoring at the CV Show include the Merridale GST combination fuel management dispenser. Making its debut at the CV Show, and designed for easy installation the new unit brings together fuel dispensing, key or card activated security and management and tank gauging together into a single enclosure with options for single and twin pump dispensers. More from Steve Hannan on +44 (0)1 902 870 037 or email@example.com Teleroute to preview future online freight ‘dating agency’ The pioneering freight-exchange organisation, Teleroute, will show previews of forthcoming new products and features at this year’s CV Show. “Teleroute has been in operation across Europe for more than 20 years and gives hauliers access to information across 40 countries,” says Alix Elvin. This allows them to match freight with vehicle space. Effectively we act as an online service to marry up vehicles returning empty with freight requiring road transport.” Although well established, Teleroute has big plans for the future and will use the NEC as a shop window. More from Alix Elvin on +44 (0)2 082 471 461 or firstname.lastname@example.org SMMT stand better than ever at CV Show The Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders says there will be more reason than ever to visit its stand, 5701, at the CV Show. There will be presentations on the Society’s services and the benefits of membership, while people from member firms will be able to talk with technical managers about the Society’s new Type Approval Advisory Service. They can also get free use of the four person meeting room, between 0900 and 1630, though it will be available on a first booked first served basis. More from Rachel Bell on +44 (0)2 073 449 234 or email@example.com Skills Zone offers solid careers advice “If you’re looking to develop your career over the coming year then head to the Skills Zone at this year’s CV Show.” The main base is in Hall 2 but for the first time the Zone will spread into the CV Show itself. “A number of companies will have their own Zone staff on their stands,” explained Gareth Jenkins. “You’ll be able to spot them thanks to their green badges.” There is also a special event planned for school careers advisors, on 24 April. “We’re telling them about the variety of careers our industry offers so that they can go back and inspire the next generation.” Gareth Jenkins on + 44 (0)2 076 301 111 or firstname.lastname@example.org Knapen Trailers go Dutch Dutch firm Knapen Trailers say quality and innovative design drives the lowest operating costs for their customers. CV Show-goers can find out more by visiting the Dutch Pavilion, stand 3341 More from Stephen Collins on +31 (0) 493 320330 or email@example.com Experts debate new moves to tackle vehicle crime Senior police officers, insurance experts, members of Government and representatives of vehicle manufacturers will be discussing the latest measures to tackle auto theft at the National Vehicle Crime Conference in Warwickshire, from 24 to 25 April at the Heritage Motor Centre at Gaydon. The event will highlight recent developments in tackling vehicle theft across a range of market sectors, including cars, motorcycles, construction plant, trucks, trailers and road freight crime, and leisure vehicles such as caravans and motor homes. The event is organised by the International Association of Auto Theft Investigators. The two day delegate rate is £97. More from Jacqui Gay on +44 (0)1 889 561 400 or firstname.lastname@example.org First Scottish Euro 4 Citaros The first Euro 4 Mercedes-Benz Citaros for a Scottish operator just went to work for McGill’s Bus Service on its route linking Largs, Greenock and Glasgow. The two new buses are amongst the first Euro 4 buses to work in Scotland. More from Christiane Rieger at +44 (0)2 476 626 000 or email@example.com Plaxton’s Yorkshire century Plaxton, which says it ist Britain’s biggest coach builder celebrates its centenary this month. The firm has been based in Scarborough since 1907 and has been building vehicles since the earliest days of the charabanc. Today’s 500-strong workforce builds touring coaches and modern easy-access urban buses for customers around the British Isles and creates a turnover of over £60m. More from Andrew Warrender on +44 (0)1 723 581 500 or firstname.lastname@example.org FTA’s Scottish manifesto Freight Transport Association just published a Freight Transport Manifesto for Scotland, its says, to help candidates in the Scottish Parliament and Local Government elections. The document outlines the transport and distribution needs for industry seeking to deliver goods and services within Scotland, to England and beyond, and for goods coming inwards. More from Geoff Dossetter on +44 (0)1 892 552 255 or email@example.com Robinson’s road train for CV Show The CV Show organisers say that Stafford based haulier Stan Robinson hopes to bring its road train to the CV Show to join Denby Transport’s Eco-Link trailer. Both extra long trucks offer opportunities to cut both congestion and pollution through increased efficiency. “We’re delighted to give space to these innovative trucks,” said Bob Sockl, marketing consultant to the CV Show and ATS. There are trials on the continent and a UK government study under way, so there is growing interest in the UK and we’re pleased to have the opportunity to help stimulate discussion – and what better place than at Europe’s biggest annual commercial vehicle and road transport show ” Both the trucks will be in an outside display area and the organisers expect them to attract a lot of attention. More from Robin Dickeson +44 (0)2 073 449 222 or firstname.lastname@example.org Riverside buys Trio Widnes-based Riverside Truck Rental Limited, a division of NRG Fleet Services Ltd, says it just bought Milton Keynes-based Trio Hire Direct for an undisclosed sum. The move will increase Riverside’s 600 strong fleet by 15% and see Trio Hire Direct change its name to Trio Truck Rental More from Russell Markstein on +44 (0)1 514 233 000 or Russell@riversidetruckrental.comDownloadClick to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)
A Melbourne doctor who mistakenly prescribed penicillin to a 73 year old fatally allergic patient has escaped incrimination and fines. According to a coroner’s finding, Dr Arthur Papagelis prescribed and organised the administering of a shot of penicillin to Mr. George Perdikaris, although his patient notes indicated that Mr. Perdikaris was allergic to the antibiotic. Coroner Paresa Spanos found that Dr Papagelis, “did not refer to the notes until it was too late, and that Dr Pagagelis, “carefully asked Perdikaris whether he was allergic to any antibiotics…and finally whether he was allergic to penicillin.” But the coroner said Dr Pagagelis’s claim was “unsworn and self-serving.” The elderly man died on July 23, 2005 after returning home to collapse in front of his wife, Niki and two granddaughters. A formal hearing conducted by the Medical Practitioners Board last week concluded that the doctor had engaged in unprofessional conduct and that he had given an injection of penicillin to his patient when he ought to have known Mr. Perdikaris might have been allergic to penicillin. The panel ordered that the reprimanded doctor undergo counselling in relation to the role of clinical records, prescription, administration of medication, and recording of allergies.Mr. Perdikaris’ daughter, Nea Farquharson, who had previously called on the board to deregister and fine Dr Papagelis, is distraught with the outcome and is sending a letter to the board to express her disagreement. In expressing her anger to Neos Kosmos English Edition (NKEE) “Our law stinks when it comes to doctors. This doctor has killed my father and as far as I’m concerned because they have a doctor title next to their name they can get away with things like this. If I killed my friend by accident I would be in jail,” she says.“We will never ever know what happened in that room while he gave that injection because the doctor did not give evidence in person to the coroner, or the board and our legal system allows us to do that again because he is a doctor and it might incriminate him,” she adds.Whilst Ms. Farquharson alludes to the difficulty of laying criminal charges, the family’s lawyer, Andrea Tsalamandris from Holding Redlich confirms that a claim was made by Mr. Perdikaris’s widow, which has settled informally for a six figure sum. “The family are satisfied with the settlement achieved in the case, but of course no amount of money can make up for the loss of a loved one,” she says. “The Medical Practitioners Board finding that Dr Papagelis engaged in unprofessional conduct is a very significant finding against him but sadly for the family the Medical Board’s findings are too little, too late.”When asked why Dr. Papagelis did not receive a harsher penalty, a spokesperson for the Medical Practioner’s board would not comment directly however said that,”The role of Board is to protect public and to assess whether or not it is safe for medical practioners to practice, and whether they provide an acceptable level of care.” Ms. Farquharson is not only disappointed of the Board’s outcome but also distressed that Dr Papagelis, “has been allowed to practice as a doctor for three and a half years after he killed her father.“He knew my father for over 10 years and in that time since he has shown no remorse and has never apologised to my family”.NKEE attempted to contact Dr. Papagelis at the Hillcrest Health Centre in Broadmedows twice but did not receive a response at the time of publication. Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram
WASHINGTON — A budget scorekeeper for U.S. lawmakers projects that federal debt compared to the size of the economy will reach 78 percent this fiscal year, the highest level in nearly seven decades.The Congressional Budget Office predicts the debt will grow even as government revenue flattens out in the next few years. Meanwhile, spending on Social Security and Medicare is projected to take a larger share of the pie.Keith Hall, the CBO’s director, says the prospect of large and growing debt poses substantial risks for the nation.The CBO’s report says more of the government’s spending will be dedicated to servicing the debt, to the point that interest payments will about equal spending on Social Security in 30 years.
The federal government is cracking down on the Juneau School District because its website discriminates against people with disabilities. People living with conditions like low vision and deafness use special features on their computers to make surfing the web possible.Listen nowBrin Marx builds websites for the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation. He uses high-contrast accessibility features and reading software to compensate for his low vision. (Photo by Quinton Chandler, KTOO – Juneau)The Juneau School District was called out by the U.S. Department of Education’s Office of Civil Rights after receiving a complaint about the district’s website.Kristin Bartlett is the school district spokeswoman. Bartlett said, “A complaint had been filed with them because certain pages of its website were not accessible to people with disabilities.”The department found similar problems with 10 other schools and education groups in seven states including the Montana School for the Deaf and Blind.The Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act prohibit government agencies and any entity that gets federal money from discriminating against people with disabilities.In a settlement with the Department of Education, the district and the other education groups agreed to fix their sites.“In July we’ll be transitioning to a new website and that service provider operates by what’s called the web content accessibility guidelines,” Bartlett said.Bartlett said those guidelines are like best practices for web building.The Department of Education lists examples of problems disabled people might have with a website in a press release. It might be hard to understand, so we found somebody who could show us.Brin Marx works for the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation. He has low vision and works in IT writing webpages.Brin Marx says this backlit keyboard is extremely helpful for helping him deal with low vision. (Photo by Quinton Chandler, KTOO – Juneau)At his desk, he works on the agency’s website and other internet applications. He has pretty standard equipment. PC, dual computer screens. It could be any workstation in any office — until you notice his operating system narrating webpages.To read from a computer screen, Marx turns on special settings that most PCs have. He runs his mouse cursor over words and a narrator reads to him. He also has a backlit keyboard that illuminates the numbers and letters. He bought it back when his sight was normal but now it’s extremely helpful. His most valuable tool is a high contrast display made for people with low vision.“What that means is that most colors are black, and there’s no background images or colors, and the text is just white, and the webpage is very plain – usually just the text and the occasional image. Most of the images are gone,” he said.Marx had normal vision up until three years ago. He said he has a genetic disorder called FEVR, where causes the retina to detach slightly in the later teen years.“I’m unable to differentiate a lot of colors, seeing in low light and very bright lights – it’s fairly difficult to navigate, recognize people and faces,” he said.He said there’s been stem cell research into reattaching a retina to the back of the eye, but it’s still just theory and probably wouldn’t help him anyway. So he’s had to adapt.Marx visits the Juneau School District’s website and gave us his take.“So this page is pretty interesting actually because normally if I mouse over these links it would read off what the link says obviously, but in this case they don’t and I’m not sure why it doesn’t. You’d have to go out of your way to turn that off,” he said.Besides the screen reader-hyperlink problem, Marx said the biggest issue is that the website uses a lot of PDFs. Screen readers can’t read PDFs and the high contrast mode he uses to read doesn’t work with them either.“A lot of PDFs will just be black text on a white background. Maybe people like white text on a black background and that’s just not possible. They’re not able to enlarge the font size if they need to,” Marx said.Marx said it’s pretty common for websites to be designed without considering people with disabilities. He thinks a lot of designers try to make their websites flashy, which can hurt accessibility.“One of the biggest problems is people using images instead of real content. They tend to put text in images, which really doesn’t work for screen readers. It’ll either be hidden or they simply won’t be able to read what is in the text,” Marx said.As part of a deal with the Department of Education, the Juneau School District will eventually have regular compliance audits of its new site.“A good design should be usable by anyone. That’s really what I strive for. To be good at my job I have to be able to write accessible webpages,” Marx said.Marx said government websites have among the worst accessibility, ironic considering the federal government passed the laws that protect people with disabilities from discrimination.
Visakhapatnam: YSRCP Anakapalle MLA Gudivada Amarnath on Sunday said that people were happy with the decisions taken by Chief Minister Y S Jagan Mohan Reddy in the past one month. The MLA said that Jagan initiated measures to resolve the water woes in the State. As part of it, Amarnath said the Chief Minister has plans to divert the Godavari water to Srisailam by adopting friendly attitude with the neighbouring state Telangana. However, he pointed out that it was unfortunate that the TDP was finding fault with such initiative taken by the Chief Minister for the welfare of people.
Stock market indices worldwide have been crashing through key psychological levels to new all-time highs: 7,000 on the FTSE 100, 5,000 on the technology-heavy Nasdaq index in the US and 12,000 on the key DAX index in Germany.But most people have missed out on this market rallyWhile this stock market rally sounds very glamorous, one of the key features of the current run-up in stock markets worldwide is how few people in Europe have actually taken advantage.Take the example of the UK: only 18% of households hold exposure to shares directly or indirectly via unit trusts or other funds (Figure 1). That means 82% of households have seen no direct benefit from the doubling in value of the FTSE 100 index since the early 2009 crisis lows.In fact, matters are even worse in Germany, where only 13% of all households had any exposure to shares or equity funds of any sort.And you may think the doubling in value of the FTSE 100 over six years is impressive. Well think again. The German DAX index of Germanys largest 30 stocks has risen from 3,600 in early 2009 (a similar level to the FTSE back then) to over 12,000 today, more than tripling in value over the same six years.The 2008-09 financial crisis took its toll on stock market confidenceClearly, the big hit to stock markets from the 2008 global financial crisis (when the FTSE 100 fell nearly 50%) has put many people off investing in stocks and shares, as we can see from the drop in value of unit trusts held in Isas from 2005 to 2008 (Figure 2).Interestingly, the total value of funds held in Isas only rose 84% from the low in 2008 to the end of 2014, while the FTSE 100 doubled. Clearly, a lot of the money held in funds in Isas was not invested in shares but rather in other assets such as government bonds.Yet again, more evidence that many investors have not taken full advantage of the current stock market rally.Mostly about housingSo where is the net worth of UK households held? Unsurprisingly, given the strong rebound in the UK property market over the past few years, 42% is held in housing (both primary residences and second homes, plus buy-to-let; Figure 3). Meanwhile, 35% is held in private pensions and life insurance policies (including annuities). And a full 16% of total household wealth is still held in cash savings, despite the historically low interest rates on offer. In stark contrast, only 7% of total household wealth is held directly in shares or unit trusts exposed to shares.Time to build up your share exposureThese statistics serve to highlight most people have not benefited anything like as much as they could have from the rise in the FTSEs value. But it is never too late.Looking today, I would make two observations. Firstly, Europe could be a good home for new share-based fund investments given the economic recovery under way and the consequent improvement in corporate profits. And secondly, one of the best low-cost ways to achieve this is through exchange-traded funds (ETFs), which are as easy to buy as any share and can be held in any self-select stocks and shares Isa.Dont forget, time to fill up your IsaRemember the limit for contributions to an Isa are £15,000 for the 2014-15, which ends on 5 April, two weeks from now. So if you havent put much or even any money into a stocks and shares ISA, now could be a good time if you have any spare cash lying around earning a minimal rate of interest in a savings account.A good ETF to buy to get exposure to the strong recovery in Continental Europe is the iShares MSCI Europe ex-UK UCITS ETF (code: IEUX), which is priced in pounds but gives exposure to the largest companies in France (21%), Germany (21%) and Switzerland (21%) within Europe.Edmund Shing is the author of The Idle Investor (Harriman House), an expert columnist and a global equity fund manager at BCS AM. He holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence. Close
Share AP Photo/Wilfredo LeeAnxious family members wait for news of students as two people embrace, February 14th, 2018, in Parkland, Fla. A shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School sent students rushing into the streets as SWAT team members swarmed in and locked down the building. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)For a brief moment after the Las Vegas massacre last fall, Republicans and Democrats in Congress talked about taking a rare step to tighten the nation’s gun laws. Four months later, the only gun legislation that has moved in the House or Senate instead eases restrictions for gun owners.The October deaths of 58 people in Las Vegas and other mass shootings have sparked debate but have had scant impact on the march toward looser gun laws under the Republican-controlled Congress. There’s little sign that the shooting deaths of 17 people at a Florida high school Wednesday will change that dynamic.The conversation at the Capitol Thursday followed a familiar pattern. Many Democrats revived calls for tighter gun laws, while Republicans focused on the mental health of the accused shooter.“As a parent, it scares me to death that this body doesn’t take seriously the safety of my children, and it seems like a lot of parents in South Florida are going to be asking that same question,” said Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., a leading advocate of tighter gun control.In the wake of the Las Vegas shooting, Murphy and other lawmakers from both parties pushed to ban bump stocks, the device that allowed the shooter’s semi-automatic rifles to mimic the rapid fire of machine guns.Those efforts soon fizzled amid opposition from Republican leaders. Instead, the GOP-controlled House approved a bill in December making it easier for gun owners to legally carry concealed weapons across state lines.The concealed carry measure, a top priority of the National Rifle Association, would allow gun owners with a state-issued concealed-carry permit to carry a handgun in any state that allows concealed weapons.The bill includes a provision to strengthen the FBI database of prohibited gun buyers — a response to another shooting in which a gunman slaughtered more than two dozen people at a Texas church in November.House Speaker Paul Ryan said Thursday that Congress should focus on whether existing laws — including those designed to prevent mentally ill people from getting guns — are working.“We need to think less about taking sides and fighting each other politically” and should instead pull together, Ryan said in comments that have become familiar. The Florida massacre was the 17th school shooting so far this year.President Donald Trump, in a solemn address to the nation, promised to “tackle the difficult issue of mental health,” but avoided any mention of guns.The 19-year-old suspect, Nikolas Cruz, is a troubled teenager who posted disturbing material on social media. He had been expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, for “disciplinary reasons,” Broward County, Florida, Sheriff Scott Israel said.The latest deadly shooting prompted Florida Sen. Bill Nelson to declare, “enough is enough.”Addressing those who say it’s too soon to talk about gun violence, Nelson asked, “When is the right time? How many more times do we want to do this? How many more folks have to die?”Nelson and other Democrats said Congress must do more than talk about mental illness. “Let’s get to the root cause . let’s get these assault weapons off our streets,” he said.The accused Florida shooter was armed with his own AR-15 rifle, the same type of weapons used in Las Vegas and Texas last fall, as well as in earlier shootings at a nightclub in Orlando, Florida and a school in Newtown, Connecticut.In a rare comment that appeared unscripted, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said he would speak to Trump and fellow Cabinet members about gun violence.Testifying on the president’s budget, Mnuchin called the school shooting a tragedy and said, “I urge Congress to look at this issue.”Mnuchin’s remark seemed at odds with the White House, which has not sought legislation or additional money to curb gun violence.Other Republicans stuck largely to a now-familiar script.Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called for a moment of silence, adding: “To say that such brutal, pointless violence is unconscionable is an understatement.”Democrats, meanwhile, urged expanded background checks and renewed their call for a special committee to examine gun violence.Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Calif., said the nation is in the midst of a crisis. “You can’t turn around without there being a mass shooting,” he said.Thompson’s criticized Republicans for failing to respond to the spate of mass shootings. “If I was a Republican member I’d be embarrassed that my leadership wouldn’t address this issue,” he said.Ryan said legislation expanding concealed carry is a good “self-defense” measure, and he blamed the Senate for not acting to address loopholes in the instant background check system.The House bill would penalize federal agencies that don’t properly report required records and reward states that comply by providing them with federal grant preferences. The measure, which is pending in the Senate, was drafted after the Air Force acknowledged that it failed to report the Texas gunman’s domestic violence conviction to the National Criminal Information Center database.Asked whether authorities should be able to confiscate guns from mentally ill people, Ryan said, “This is not the time to jump to some conclusion not knowing the full facts.”Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., said it was legitimate for Congress to debate how to respond to the shooting, but said lawmakers must acknowledge their power is limited.“If someone has decided, ‘I’m going to commit this crime,’ they will find a way to get the gun to do it,” Rubio said Thursday on the Senate floor.“I think it’s also wrong to say that there is nothing we can do,” Rubio added. “This is hard, but we need to do it.”
Feature | May 04, 2015 | Greg Freiherr Detectors Versus Tubes: CT Vendors Prepare for Battle A dual-energy CT shows perfused blood volume in a patient suspected of pulmonary embolism. First proposed 40 years ago, selective energy CT is finally beginning to have a clinical impact through products that either transmit dual-energy CT beams or ones that detect the different energies of photons in a conventional beam.A battle is taking shape in computed tomography (CT), one that pits the tubes that deliver X-rays against the detectors that record them. It is a fight over how to use X-rays of different energies — variations on the decades-old concept of selective energy CT (SECT), which promise to make diagnoses more accurate and patient management more effective. In a sense, it is radiology’s version of the matchup between Blu-ray and HD DVD a decade ago. Vendors are squaring off much like Microsoft and Sony did in 2005 with Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. And the outcome may be similar. On the exhibit floors of trade shows and in presentations by luminaries, CT’s big three are promoting their own brands of SECT. Siemens offers two products, each of which delivers dual-energy CT. One is built around a single X-ray tube, which uses rapid kVp switching technology to alternate the X-ray tube between two distinctive energies. The other has two X-ray tubes, arranged perpendicular to each other, delivering X-rays at different energies.GE and Philips are proponents of spectral CT. Rather than delivering two X-ray beams at different energies, they have focused on the detector. Their products fire conventional X-ray beams into detectors that record the different energies of photons included in these beams.Whether one approach is better than the other is anything but clear. Theoretically, said Hugo Bouchard, Ph.D., senior research scientist at the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) in the United Kingdom, the detector-based approach should have an advantage. Spectral imaging, he noted, is not limited to two energies. “But no one has yet shown the benefits of one energy-selective CT method over the other,” he said, “likely because the technologies are too recent.”Although SECT was proposed in the 1970s, the technology was not commercially available until less than a decade ago, according to Bouchard. The first peer reviewed clinical results were published in 2006. Since then, clinical research has uncovered a range of potential applications. Dual-energy and spectral CT may distinguish more effectively than conventional CT tissues of different types, as well as urinary stones of differing chemical composition; enhance stroke evaluation through the improved detection of brain infarcts; help uncover lung cancer lesions by improving contrast-to-noise ratio, overall image quality and tumor delineation; identify calcium-based plaques, even in the presence of iodinated contrast agents; and even reduce artifacts due to beam hardening. Selective energy CT also may, in some instances, reduce radiation dose to patients by reconstructing a “virtual non-contrast CT image” from the contrast-enhanced image by filtering out the iodine in the contrast medium, thereby eliminating the need for a second CT scan. Bouchard noted that two energies “could be sufficient for our current clinical needs.” If so, spectral CT and its ability to discriminate photons at several energies would offer only “marginal benefit,” he said. Spectral CT may be limiting itself, in this regard. GE describes its approach as “dual-energy spectral CT,” made possible by its detector using “rapid kV switching to acquire the dual-energy samples.” And Philips uses “dual-energy filters.” The means for obtaining the information, therefore, might matter less than the ability to perform selective energy CT. The gaming industry shows how this might happen.Ten years ago, Sony and Microsoft were locked in battle over Blu-ray and HD DVD. Blu-ray won. But its victory did not stop Microsoft. Today Xbox One owners can download an app that allows them to play movies on Blu-ray disks, an app that matters less with each passing day as more movies and programs are streamed over the Internet.The battle over selective energy technologies may be resolved in much the same way. If the concept of SECT proves itself clinically, energy-specific protocols might one day be provided by vendors to suit their machines, which will deliver the goods using whatever means they have handy, much as gaming consoles play movies today.If so, it will conclude a battle in which everyone, most importantly the patient, wins … a battle that has only begun.Greg Freiherr has reported on developments in radiology since 1983. He runs the consulting service, The Freiherr Group. Read more of his views on his blog at www.itnonline.com. FacebookTwitterLinkedInPrint分享
Brown also signed an agreement with China’s Minister of Environmental Protection, Zhou Shengxian, pledging to cooperate to improve air quality, protect public health, promote clean energy and protect the environment and natural resources.China is known for heavy pollution, much of it from the nation’s massive manufacturing industry. Earlier this year, the air quality in Beijing was rated as hazardous and residents were advised to stay inside.Some of that pollution also makes it across the Pacific Ocean to California, cutting into Brown’s own efforts for cleaner air at home.In the springtime, about 10 to 20 percent of the total dust in high elevation sites in California is believed to come from Asia, according to the California Air Resources Board.The cooperative agreement includes enhancing pollution control for industry and transportation, Brown’s office said in a news release.“Reducing pollution takes great political struggle,” Brown said in the release. “We know in America it’s not easy, so it won’t be easy in Beijing. But to the extent that we can help, we would like to help.”On Thursday, Brown will highlight the state’s interest in infrastructure by traveling from Beijing to Shanghai on China’s high-speed rail system, which is the longest in the world. The first agreement involves pursuing joint opportunities to boost trade and investment, although Brown acknowledged the state’s reputation for red tape and his own limited willingness to offer tax incentives. The Democratic governor said the state’s $1.9 trillion economy remains a magnet for risk-taking investors, startup entrepreneurs and other creative people.“There’s a problem there,” Brown told the American Chamber of Commerce in China. “But somebody is getting part of that $1.9 trillion. If you don’t want some of that, well then stay out.”The message contrasts with the usual sales pitches by governors who tout the advantages of their states. While Brown’s administration seeks more Chinese trade and investment, California is already a well-known destination for the Chinese.Chinese Vice Commerce Minister Wang Chao told Brown on Wednesday that a third of Chinese exports to the U.S. end up in or pass through California, and that China imports electronics, machinery, chemicals, fruit and other goods from the state.The agreement signed Wednesday sets up a joint task force between California, China’s Commerce Ministry and six Chinese provinces and regions to look for ways to expand investment and trade. Sectors identified for cooperation include infrastructure, environmental protection, agriculture and bio- and information technology. Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day Top Stories Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvement Plans call for construction to start next year on 3,100 residential units, 200,000 square feet of retail and commercial space, and 30 acres of parks and open space.Brown said the development would create up to 10,000 jobs.“This project is just one example of what’s possible when business leaders in two of the world’s most dynamic regions connect,” Brown said in a statement released by his office in Sacramento.While Brown helped get the project approved as mayor, the deal with Oakland-based Signature Development Group was negotiated independently of the governor’s office, the Los Angeles Times reported, although the timing of Brown’s trade mission helped motivate the Chinese partners to sign the paperwork sooner.“It meant a lot to our investor to have some sort of celebratory affair,” Michael Ghielmetti, president of the Oakland-based developer, told the newspaper.The governor also signed nonbinding agreements on trade and the environment on the second day of meetings with officials from the world’s second-largest economy. He has been joined by about 90 California business leaders from a range of industries and regions of the state. Comments Share 5 people who need to visit the Ultrastar Multi-tainment Center Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix Sponsored Stories Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project The rail line benefits from heavy government financing and faces few of the environmental and legal hurdles that such projects do in California. For example, the land needed to build the Chinese system is often forcibly procured at below market prices.At a dinner he attended Tuesday night, the governor marveled at the pace of construction in China, where the national government faces few of the political constraints endemic to U.S. decision-making.“Boy, you’ve done a lot of building,” Brown said, according to a report in The Sacramento Bee. “When I get back to California, the bulldozers are going to roll.”___Associated Press writer Juliet Williams in Sacramento, Calif., contributed to this report.(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Arizona families, Arizona farms: working to produce high-quality milk BEIJING (AP) – Gov. Jerry Brown announced a $1.5 billion Chinese investment in an Oakland construction project on Wednesday during the start of his weeklong trade mission to China.He also signed symbolic agreements on boosting trade between California and China and helping the world’s most populous nation improve its air quality.He announced at the U.S. Embassy in Beijing that China-based Zarsion Holdings Group will invest $1.5 billion in the 65-acre housing project on the Oakland waterfront, which has been in the works since Brown was mayor of Oakland from 1999 to 2007. How do cataracts affect your vision?
In order to entice the European travellers, Kerala Tourism has planned to target Europe with a budget of INR 7.5 crore following the phase-II of the Promotional Campaign 2017-18.Emphasising on the European market, Kadakampally Surendran, Minister for Tourism, Co-operation and Devaswom, Government of Kerala said, “Considering Europe holds the top slot in the list of high-potential markets for overall tourism growth, Kerala Tourism has activated a rigorous promotional campaign involving diverse products that have the capability to attract travellers from the European countries to Kerala.”Highlighting the growth of state tourism, Rani George, IAS, Secretary, Tourism and Culture, Government of Kerala stated, “Through this promotional and marketing campaign, Kerala Tourism aims to double the foreign tourist arrivals and increase domestic tourist arrivals by 50 %, by 2021. This would require a year-on-year growth of 8.45% for domestic tourists and 14.87% for international tourists.”Under the Promotional Campaign 2017-18 in Europe, Kerala Tourism has planned to utilise all forms of promotional tools under various categories, including television campaigns (INR 3.5 crore), Out of Home (OOH) campaign (INR 2.5 crore), Consumer Travel Mart (INR 1 crore) and Kerala Blog Express (INR 50 lakhs).Bala Kiran, IAS, Director, Kerala Tourism and Managing Director of Kannur International Airport stated, “Under this campaign, Kerala Tourism has continued its focus on promoting the unexplored and pristine destinations of North Kerala such as Bekal, Kannur, Malabar, Wayanad etc. The aim is to scale up the trade and tourism business of the state while establishing new trade connections in the potential markets.”
Where Does Mortgage Availability Lie? in Daily Dose, Featured, Market Studies, News, Origination Credit Ellie Mae Joel Kan MBA mortgage availability Mortgage Bankers Association mortgage index 2018-12-06 Scott_Morgan December 6, 2018 1,983 Views Mortgage credit availability increased by a little over 1 percent in November, according to the latest Mortgage Credit Availability Index released Thursday by the Mortgage Bankers Association. The index is based on data from Ellie Mae.The 1.1 percent uptick brought the overall index to 188.8 in November and is, according to MBA, a sign of loosening credit.The overall index is the result of ups and downs in sub-indexes. According to MBA, the index measuring conventional mortgages increased 2.4 percent last month. That coincides with increases of 1.1 percent in the jumbo sector and 4 percent in the conforming sector.Those gains, however, were offset by a 0.1 percent dip in government mortgage availability.“The supply of credit continues to drift higher, driven once again by growth in the conventional credit space, while credit supply in government loans was essentially unchanged from the previous month,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s AVP of economic and industry forecasting. “There were more mortgage programs offered with high LTV and low credit score characteristics – likely attributable to rising demand from first-time buyers. As seen in our weekly mortgage applications survey, average purchase loan amounts have moved lower in the second half of the year, which also supports first-timers’ increased presence in the market.”Kan added that even with the deceleration in price growth in many areas, “still-high home prices continue to lead to increased credit supply for jumbo loan programs.”Charts following the various credit availability sectors show all but the government sector on an essentially upward trajectory for the past four years. The government sector, though, has been on a steadily downward slope since the spring of 2017.The index was benchmarked to 100 in 2012. Prior to that, it had been at 900. That number took a steep dive to 100 in the second half of 2008, according to MBA. Share
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