Four in ten (40%) respondents want additional annual leave from their employer, according to research by recruitment firm Robert Half.The study, which surveyed 1000 employees and 200 employers, also found that 28% of employee respondents want more flexible working hours.The survey also found:3% of employee respondents want additional corporate perks, such as ironing services or a subsidised gym.12% of staff respondents would like the opportunity to work from home or telecommute.5% of employer respondents believe their staff want additional corporate perks.Just over half (56%) of employer respondents think their employees would like more flexible working hours.Almost a quarter (23%) of employer respondents believe their workers would like more annual leave.9% of employer respondents think their staff would like to be offered the opportunity to work from home or telecommute.Phil Sheridan, managing director at Robert Half UK, said: “The focus on employee recruitment and retention sharpens in a robust economy and many executives may be undervaluing a perk their workforce wants most. Flexible working is slowly becoming an expectation for many employees, particularly those negotiating their job offer, while having additional paid time off is even more highly valued.“It’s tempting in our ‘always-on’ economy to let the lines between home life and work become blurred, but it’s worth remembering that to maintain a productive and loyal workforce, employers need to give their staff the opportunity to switch off and recharge. Offering extra time off over the holidays will mean that employees return with higher levels of motivation and morale in January.”
Peel Ports uses salary sacrifice arrangements to support staff Peel Ports Group offers its 1,000 employees several benefits via salary sacrifice to support them in both their work and personal lives. These include its contributions to its stakeholder pension scheme and childcare vouchers. Its most popular benefits offered on a tax-efficient basis are pension contributions, which 90% of its workforce takes up; its iPad salary sacrifice scheme, which 10% use; and its childcare voucher scheme, which 4% of its staff have taken up.Howard Sloane, HR director at Peel Ports, believes that the government simply may not be able to afford to not dispose of the schemes. “Salary sacrifice has a much wider benefit to the economy in areas such as encouraging people to save, supporting working people with childcare and reducing carbon footprint,” he says.“Without salary sacrifice, the amount payable to pension schemes could be affected, which would affect employee’s retirement plans. This knock-on effect would have UK-wide implications. In addition, the complexity and costs associated with unravelling salary sacrifice would not be insignificant.” Find out more about all the latest developments impacting reward and benefits at Employee Benefits Live 2016 on 11-12 October at Olympia National, LondonIn the policy paper that was released following Chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement and Spending Review on 25 November 2015, the government outlined that it will continue to consider what action will be taken around salary sacrifice arrangements. In the Spending review and autumn statement 2015 policy paper, the government expressed its concern at the growth of salary sacrifice arrangements, echoing the sentiments expressed in the Summer Budget 2015 when the government stated it would actively monitor salary sacrifice arrangements and their impact on tax.This raises the question as to what employers’ options would be if the government was to alter the way it operated salary sacrifice schemes, or even removed them altogether. Julian Foster, managing director at Computershare, explains: “The government must weigh the cost that comes from reductions in tax revenues against the value that salary sacrifice schemes offer to employers and employees. It’s important that employers and providers work together to ensure that schemes are not abused and continue to represent good value.”Cost efficienciesCar salary sacrifice schemes are a prime example of popular tax-efficient arrangements among employers and employees. Alison Argall, business development director at Tusker, says: “Employees’ average monthly saving is £80 on vehicle costs and £50 in fuel, and it’s a fixed cost so the employee will know exactly how much they’re spending each month making budgeting easier.”In fact, 92% of teacher respondents said they would consider taking up a car via a salary sacrifice arrangement if they were offered it as a benefit, according to a study by Tusker published in November 2015.In October 2015, Danone reported an 82% engagement rate with emails communicating its salary sacrifice car scheme following its introduction in September 2015. The organisation also saw 140 active users in the system and more than 50 quotes saved in the two weeks immediately following the launch.Such take-up reflects employees’ appetite for accessing tax-efficient benefits such as car schemes through salary sacrifice arrangements. Removing the method therefore could cause employees to become seriously disengaged with their employer and their benefits package. Kim Honess, head of flexible benefits consulting at Willis Towers Watson, explains: “These benefits are the cherry on top of the icing; taking them away would disengage so many.”Jo Dalby, finance director at Busy Bees Benefits, adds: “It’d be very difficult for employees who are using and enjoying a scheme to suddenly have it taken away.”Some salary sacrifice arrangements can bring additional benefits, as well as create tax savings. “Salary sacrifice benefits such as bikes-for-work schemes can boost employee health and form part of an organisation’s green agenda,” says Honess. Impact on reward strategiesIf the government was to remove tax-efficient benefits from the reward space, it would not only mean removing employees’ available tax savings, but also savings on national insurance contributions (NICs) for both the employee and employer.This would also mean that organisations would have to adapt reward packages to suit any new arrangements in order to attract and retain staff. Dalby explains: “If the government did get rid of salary sacrifice, employers would be forced to change their benefits packages.“Savings for employers from salary sacrifice [arrangements] mean they’re more likely to put effort into promoting it, so why would the government take that away?”Dalby adds that cars, bikes-for-work and pensions arrangements would be particularly difficult to get rid of because of the wealth of communication the government has done to emphasise the importance of saving for retirement and greener travel. As Computershare’s Foster says: “Reductions in salary sacrifice schemes by government would be detrimental. Without the tax incentive it’s likely [employees’] options would be less far less comprehensive.”Tax-efficient prospectsOverall, the industry has mixed views on the future of salary sacrifice arrangements. For example, Alastair Kendrick, director at accounting firm MacIntyre Hudson, believes it is likely that the government could scrap these because they are expensive to implement. “It would be an easy option to get rid of salary sacrifice schemes,” he says.However, Willis Towers Watson’s Honess says it was a positive step for the government to express concern at the growth of salary sacrifice arrangements because staff could actually be overusing it due to how much tax they can save. “Salary sacrifice could become a victim of its own success, just like the M25,” she says. “Staff can overuse it because it’s so beneficial for them, not so much so for the government because of the lack of NI.”She adds that tax-efficient benefits can actively mould employees’ behaviour, so, motivationally speaking, it would be counterproductive for the government to remove the salary sacrifice arrangements. For example, research by the Cycle to Work Alliance published in December 2015 found that almost two-thirds (60%) of employee respondents believe cycling to work improves their productivity.While the future of salary sacrifice arrangements is unclear, the value these bring to both employers and employees cannot be disputed.Viewpoint: Salary sacrifice can benefit both employer and employeeSalary sacrifice arrangements are very simple, highly effective and potentially beneficial to both employee and employer. It is almost too good to be true.At the heart of a salary sacrifice arrangement is an agreement between an employer and an employee to change the terms of the employment contract to reduce the employee’s entitlement to cash pay. This sacrifice of cash entitlement is usually made in return for some form of non-cash benefit such as more holidays, a better car or enhanced health insurance.Salary sacrifice can be financially beneficial for both employer and employee. For example, when part of an employee’s remuneration shifts from cash, on which tax and national insurance contributions (NICs) are due, to non-cash benefits that are wholly or partially exempt from NICs, both sides can be better off.While simple in principle, and capable of being changed, suitable documentation is required. If an employee wants to opt in or out of a salary sacrifice arrangement, their employer must alter their contract with each change. Employees’ contracts must be clear on what their cash and non-cash entitlements are and, once the entitlements are clear, it is the employer’s responsibility to make sure that they pay and deduct the right amount of tax and NICs for cash and benefits.Following the significant increase in salary sacrifice arrangements over the years, the government is becoming concerned about the potential loss of NICs. Concerns were raised in the Summer Budget, and the government announced in the Autumn Statement 2015 that it was launching consultation among employers, which seems likely to form part of a wider evidence-gathering process on the use of salary sacrifice.At present, there is no clear indication as to which way the Treasury is likely to move. With the prospect that income tax and NIC maybe harmonised in the foreseeable future, it is unlikely that Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) will remove any of the tax advantages from salary sacrifice.However, HMRC is almost certain to take a tougher approach to ensuring that every detail of salary sacrifice schemes is implemented correctly, whether or not the harmonisation of income tax and NIC actually happens. Employer failures in implementation may mean that what looks too good to be true is proved by HMRC to be just that.George Bull is senior tax partner at RSM UK Tax and Accounting Need to know:Salary sacrifice arrangements are currently under review by the governmentSuch arrangements can be costly for government in terms of tax revenues but create valued tax savings for employers and staff.Organisations and workers could be demotivated if the government removed salary sacrifice arrangements all together.
Global digital agency organisation Wunderman UK has launched a new wellbeing programme for its 400 London-based staff, which includes the completion of an on-site wellness studio.The new programme, called Well Beings, was launched on 2 January 2018 to help staff own and take control of their wellbeing-related goals, as well as to set a high standard for health management within the business. The wellbeing programme will additionally help the organisation to future-proof its existing teams by supporting staff to maintain their health.Well Beings features a range of events and activities that are tailored to support employees’ mental, physical and spiritual health. It includes a running club, meditation sessions, martial arts classes, nutrition support, mental health first aid sessions, reflexology and yoga, massages, and business coaching talks to name a few. The calendar of events will also include alternative health remedies, such as forest bathing.As part of the new programme, managers will also have the remit to identify employees within their team who may be under particular pressure and suggest Well Beings activities that might help.To support the launch of Well Beings, Wunderman UK has built an on-site wellness studio at its London head office. Designed with a vintage glamour theme, the studio includes equipment such as ballet barres and punch bags. Additionally, the organisation will be launching a corresponding app in summer 2018 to better guide staff through the year’s wellbeing schedule.The Well Beings programme and the design of the wellness studio were created taking into account feedback obtained via staff surveys that were completed over the course of 2017. This was to ensure that Wunderman UK employees were achieving the work-life balance that they desired.The wellbeing programme was launched to staff using a visual campaign involving plasticine. Each employee received a tub of plasticine so they could craft their own version of wellbeing or their wellbeing goals in a physical shape or format. The campaign was also shared via the organisation’s social media channels, such as Twitter.Pip Hulbert (pictured), chief executive officer at Wunderman UK, said: “We have put an understanding of how it feels to work at Wunderman at the centre of all our talent and cultural plans going forwards. Building our own studio is a massive step for us and shows how seriously we are taking the health and wellbeing of our staff, offering fun and inspiring activities that fit easily into the working day.“I definitely believe we now offer one of the best wellbeing initiatives in our industry. Classes will be designed to support people in the face of specific stresses that can arise in the workplace and help staff discover what wellbeing really means to them as individuals. We want to signal to everyone that they have ‘permission’ to take time out and that wellbeing is seen as a priority by the business.”
More than two-fifths (42%) of employee respondents who have taken up a death-in-service benefit do not know how much would be paid out to their loved ones in the event of them passing away, according to research by Direct Line Life Insurance.Its survey, which canvassed the opinions of 2,004 individuals and 100 senior HR professionals whose organisations offer a death-in-service benefit, also found that 17% of employee respondents do not know what this benefit is, and 11% do not know if they would be covered by their employer.The research also found:89% of employer respondents offer employees a death-in-service benefit, with 5% of employers paying less than a years’ wages, 18% paying three to four times an employee’s salary and 5% paying more than five times an employee’s annual salary as standard.68% of employer respondents who offer this benefit increase the cover for employees in senior management positions.43% of employer respondents set the qualifying period for their death-in-service benefit as the completion of a probation period, compared to 40% who make it available from an employee’s first day and 18% who do not pay out until an employee has been at the organisation for at least one year.34% of employee respondents think they would be automatically entitled to receive a death-in-service benefit within their probation period.43% of employee respondents believe their death-in-service benefit will only pay out if they were to die in a workplace-related incident.14% of employer respondents would not release funds for up to three months or more, and 32% would not automatically pay out a death-in-service benefit to an employee’s chosen nominee, instead paying into a discretionary trust.Jane Morgan (pictured), business manager at Direct Line Life Insurance, said: “There is a great deal of confusion and misunderstanding regarding death-in-service. While it would be an invaluable employee benefit for many families if the worst were to happen, the amount paid out is unlikely to cover their outstanding mortgage balance. This could leave families in a financially vulnerable position, especially having lost an income, adding extra pressure at an already emotional and difficult time.”
HOLLYWOOD, FLA. (WSVN) – New surveillance video has been released of a worker who found himself under the gun at a South Florida business.Surveillance video showed a man and woman leaving a Home Depot, located on Oakwood Boulevard and Stirling Road in Hollywood, on June 6, with a cart full of lights they had not paid for.A loss prevention officer ran after them when the woman pulled a gun from her purse and threatened to shoot him in the face.The shoplifters ran to the parking lot and drove off.The employee was not injured.If you have any information on these shoplifters, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
TALLAHASSEE, FLA. (WSVN) – A Florida State University research team may have discovered a breakthrough in the search for a cure for Zika.The team made the discovery that certain existing drugs can help stop the virus from reproducing in the body and damaging brain cells in newborns.They are continuing to run tests to help determine a specific treatment regimen.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
HIALEAH, FLA. (WSVN) – A former Hialeah police officer has been sentenced to spend several years behind bars.Former Hialeah Police Officer Raul Castellon has been sentenced to five years in prison.Prosecutors said he illegally accessed a police database, stole residents’ personal information and gave it to another man who used it to commit identity fraud.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
CORAL GABLES, FLA. (WSVN) – Hundreds gathered in Coral Gables for the unveiling of the new additions to Miracle Mile.The new additions and improvements made their debut during the Miracle Mile Back to Beautiful event, Saturday.The long remodeling process saw the addition of expanded sidewalks, improved lighting, outdoor dining and public art.Guests spent their day enjoying live music, artist drawing charicatures and activities hosted by local businesses.The event was hosted in partnership with the Business Improvement District of Coral Gables, the City of Coral Gables, and the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
MIAMI (WSVN) – A crash that closed a portion of the northbound lanes of Interstate 95 has killed one person.Officials temporarily closed I-95 heading north, just beyond Exit 4B for eastbound Interstate 195 due to a crash Monday morning.According to Florida Highway Patrol, a car was heading down I-95, approaching Northwest 62nd Street, when the driver lost control of the vehicle and collided into the center median concrete wall.The driver was ejected from the car and pronounced dead at the scene.Another crash involving a tanker truck also took place heading north on I-95 at Northwest 79th Street. The express lanes and several general lanes were blocked and have since reopened.It is unknown if weather was a contributing factor in either crash.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
MIAMI (WSVN) – Newly-released surveillance video shows a different view of a burglar who, police said, swiped a flat-screen TV from an apartment complex in Miami.The security footage captured the subject, seen wearing a hoodie, as he came in through the gate outside of the building near Northwest 36th Street and 22nd Avenue, Jan. 12.Minutes later, he could be seen casually leaving with the TV set under his right arm.Video from inside the building showed the thief breaking the lock before entering the victim’s unit.If you have any information on this burglary, call Miami-Dade Crime Stoppers at 305-471-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $1,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
During the last few minutes, Dusek addressed some transportation issues pertinent to Homer students, which will be addressed further on Thursday at West Homer Elementary Library. Dusek urged viewers to get involved in the budget process because over the past four years the school district has already reduced budget expenditures by nearly $8 million. Later a viewer asked Dusek, “Please remind us about the emergency procedures- for example had that been an earthquake at 12:30 p.m.” District Superintendent Sean Dusek began with an update since no questions had been posted yet: “So what really has happened now is we’re looking at a $3.3 million deficit and as a part of that we will use a little bit of our savings to offset some of that deficit but we’re likely going to have to find over $2 million in budget reductions.” He says that on February 1, Assistant Superintendent Dave Jones will be hosting a Facebook Live Budget Discussion, followed by four in-person budget forums around the Peninsula. Dusek: “Again it is dependent upon the severity of the situation, but if something like that would’ve happened yesterday we would have done Duck, Cover, Hold, we would have moved our kids to safe locations within the building or to evacuation zones.” Dusek also thanked all of the first responders who jumped into action early Tuesday morning to assist with the tsunami warnings and shelters in the KPBSD schools. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Last updated on January 25th, 2018 at 10:39 amAt least 40 people tuned in Tuesday night to the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District’s Live Q and A event where the topic of budget dominated. Story as aired: Audio PlayerAshley-on-live-event-1.mp3VmAshley-on-live-event-1.mp300:00RPd
The American Society of Business Publications Editors has launched an ethics advisory program to offer advice on ethical issues in both editorial and advertising to its members via e-mail.Once an e-mail is received, the ethics committee will then review the issue and respond within 10 business days, the society says. Keeping the e-mailer’s identity undisclosed, ASBPE says it will post the response in the members-only section of its Web site.Each ASBPE response will review “relevant factors” and will cite the applicable portions of ASBPE’s Guide to Preferred Editorial Practices, the society says. To e-mail the committee, click here.
Cygnus Business Media today said it has laid off 50 employees across editorial, sales, sales support and graphic design—representing about 12 percent of its overall workforce.In addition, the trade publisher is suspending publication of several of its titles. A Cygnus spokesperson declined to say how many or which titles are affected. Sources, however, said Modern Jeweler, Lustre, RV Trade Digest and Wood Digest are among them.“The areas that are affected are related to media that remains viable, but are currently depressed due to market conditions,” the company said in a statement.UPDATE: According to multiple sources, Cygnus has received at least one offer to purchase Wood Digest and Surface Fabrication magazines. A company spokesperson declined to comment. In addition to the staffing reduction, Cygnus said it is reorganizing its pavement, fire and emergency medical services sectors—moving those operations under a centralized sales and marketing group. That group will be able to “provide larger, more integrated opportunities for marketers that include print, expositions, interactive, video, digital and social media programs,” the company said.“Some of our groups are seeing signs that their markets are stabilizing—with requests even coming in for Q4 proposals,” said Cygnus Publishing president Mike Martin. “That’s a positive sign, similar to what the overall economy might be suggesting. But no one is projecting a rapid turnaround next year. Because of that, the decisions and steps taken today have positioned our operations, to the best of our knowledge and visibility, to remain sound this year and next year, should we not see some improvement in the economy.”In March, Cygnus eliminated 30 employees, the result of a consolidation of the company’s production and design teams. At the time, Cygnus suspended publication of Photo Trade News (PTN) and Studio Photography, as well as Imaginginfo.com.Earlier this year, Cygnus eliminated its 401(k) contribution program and froze employee salaries.Cygnus owners ABRY Partners has been exploring a sale of the b-to-b publisher since last summer and is said to be negotiating a debt-for-equity exchange with GE Commercial Finance, its senior lender. That deal was expected to be closed in May but negotiations are still “ongoing,” according to the spokesperson.
The deal follows the purchase of News Corp’s IGN Entertainment gamer and lifestyle group, which included IGN.com, UGO.com, 1UP.com and AskMen.com. That deal reportedly went for under $100 million. Terms of the NetShelter acquisition were not released, but j2 says the financial impact will not be material. Tech, gaming and men’s lifestyle media company Ziff Davis has purchased NetShelter, a network of approximately 150 independent tech blogs, including MacRumors.com, SlashGear.com and AndroidCentral.com, from InPowered.Ziff Davis, which became a division of j2 Global when it was purchased last November, says the deal makes it the number-one tech property per comScore numbers, with 29 million uniques in April.The company will integrate its proprietary BuyerBase ad-targeting platform with the NetShelter portfolio.
McGovern began his career in publishing in 1959 with a part-time editorial job at Computers and Automation magazine where he ultimately became associate editor and associate publisher.McGovern founded the International Data Corporation in 1964, which is now a subsidiary company of IDG. By 1967 he launched IDG’s flagship publication, Computerworld. And in 1972 he exported the concept to Asia with the launch of Shukan Computer in Japan.His push for global IT is underscored by his investments in the People’s Republic of China where he was recognized with the International Investment Achievement Award at the CCTV 2007 China Economic Leadership Awards.McGovern has also received other honors including lifetime achievement awards from American Business Media, the Magazine Publishers of America and the American Society of Business Publications Editors.IDG will remain a privately held company overseen by its board with Kirk Campbell, president and CEO of IDC and Michael Friedenberg, CEO of IDG Communications Worldwide, remaining at their posts.“Pat always believed that each of IDG’s business units should run like independently managed companies and that structure and process will continue,” says Ted Bloom, IDG’s president and CFO, in a statement. “The best way we can all honor Pat is for us to continue being successful with the structure he set up 50 years ago.”You can view the full IDG announcement of McGovern’s passing here. International Data Group (IDG) founder and chairman Patrick J. McGovern passed away on March 19 at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif., according to a company announcement Thursday. “IDG has lost a true visionary,” says newly elected IDG Board Chairman Walter Boyd in a statement, “and the IT community has lost one of its most exceptional citizens.”The lauded information technology media pioneer and generous philanthropist spent 50 years developing, championing and expanding IDG’s network of magazines, digital properties and events. Ultimately, he oversaw IDG’s launch of roughly 300 magazines and newspapers, 460 websites, 200 mobile bile apps and 700 events in 97 countries.“Pat’s foremost desire was for IDG to make the world a better place through the medium of information technology,” Boyd says. “We have an outstanding leadership team in place to ensure that the company he created will continue to grow and prosper.”
<a href=”https://eventmarketing.wufoo.com/forms/s1cbryzy072cjxp/” title=”html form”>Fill out my Wufoo form!</a> For all the buzz in the media industry about the mounting vitality of maintaining a unified, organized, and practical audience database, most publishers’ systems for managing such data remain rudimentary at best. To gain a better understanding of where most publishers fall on the spectrum of data-literacy — and how they expect their needs to evolve in the coming months and years — Folio: surveyed publishers, marketing directors, and editors from across the media and publishing space. The results highlight what could be a major missed opportunity for publishers and media companies looking to stay ahead in a rapidly changing industry. Also included is our Marketplace Snapshot: a survey of the handful of companies offering data-management solutions to the industry, and a table of the different products and services offered by each.
Dan Cohen AUTHOR Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) filed cloture Thursday on the conference report for the fiscal 2016 defense authorization bill, setting up a procedural vote to limit debate most likely on Tuesday.Earlier on Thursday, the House adopted the conference report for the legislation, H.R. 1735, but not with enough votes to override a threatened veto of the bill by President Obama. House members voted 270-156 to advance the conference report, with Democratic opposition sufficient enough to sustain a veto. The House would need a two-thirds majority — at least 290 votes — to override the promised veto from the president.While the Obama administration opposes numerous provisions in the compromise legislation — including its failure to approve a BRAC round in 2017 and restrictions on closing the prison at Guantánamo Bay — the most significant objection stems from the measure’s reliance on DOD’s overseas contingency operations (OCO) account to sidestep the Budget Control Act spending caps.The bill would authorize $612 billion in national security spending, the same amount the White House requested. The measure leaves the discretionary budget caps in place, and authorizes only $496 billion for DOD’s base budget. To make up the shortfall, it shifts $38 billion in operation and maintenance funds from the base budget to DOD’s OCO account, which is not subject to the caps. The bill would authorize a total of $89 billion for that account.The White House has demanded that Congress lift the caps on both defense and non-defense spending, and return the $38 billion to DOD’s base budget.Much of the debate prior to the House vote focused on the veto threat, which Republicans criticized given that the total amount of spending authorized under the bill equals the administration’s budget request, reported CQ.“Frankly whether you call it base funding, OCO funding or pumpernickel it doesn’t matter. It is money that goes to the troops,” said House Armed Services Chair Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), who accused the White House of “playing politics.”The committee’s ranking Democrat, Adam Smith (Wash.), acknowledged the legislation was “by and large a good bill,” but said the GOP budget framework evaded the larger issue of the discretionary spending caps.“Is this good for our country? Is it good for our troops?” Smith said. “I don’t believe that it is.”
Dan Cohen AUTHOR The Navy’s plan to add 36 EA-18G Growlers at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island in northwest Washington would trigger a four-field increase in field carrier practice landings at Outlying Landing Field Coupeville under the service’s preferred option for expanding its fleet of electronic warfare aircraft. The move faces strong opposition, however, from some residents on Whidbey Island over noise and the strain on local resources resulting from an influx of personnel, reports the Seattle Times. The Navy is scheduled to publish an environmental impact statement later this year, followed by a final decision on the planned expansion by the Navy secretary.Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Scott Wood
News Photo: studioEAST/Getty Images Who Will Voters Pick For Best Latin Pop Album? Facebook 5 Ways BTS Won Our Hearts At The 2019 GRAMMYs Album Of The Year Nominees | 61st GRAMMY Awards Record Of The Year 61st GRAMMY Award Nominees 61st GRAMMYs: Here’s Your Apple Music Playlist H.E.R.Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage Cardi BPhoto: Dan MacMedan/WireImage 2019 GRAMMY Awards Red Carpet TLC Photo: Alison Buck/Getty Images Who’s Nominated For Song Of The Year? Relive GRAMMY Week 2019 In Pictures Record Of The Year 61st GRAMMY Award Nominees H.E.R.Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage Backstage At The 2019 GRAMMYs | Photo Gallery 2019 GRAMMY Awards Telecast | Photo Gallery Cardi B, Post Malone Among 2019 GRAMMYs Performers 2019 GRAMMY Awards Red Carpet Prev Next Amy Winehouse Best New Artist winner for 2007 | Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images Brandi Carlile, H.E.R. To Play The 61st GRAMMYs Who Will Voters Choose For Best Alternative Album? Album Of The Year Nominees | 61st GRAMMY Awards Cardi BPhoto: Dan MacMedan/WireImage Relive GRAMMY Week 2019 In Pictures Kacey MusgravesPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Who Will Voters Pick For Best Latin Pop Album? 5 Ways BTS Won Our Hearts At The 2019 GRAMMYs Email Album Of The Year Nominees | 61st GRAMMY Awards Best New Artist Nominees Revealed | 61st GRAMMYs 61st GRAMMYs: Here’s Your Apple Music Playlist BTSPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Meet The GRAMMY Man: How GRAMMYs Are Made Who Will Voters Pick For Best Pop Album? Who Is Eligible For The Best New Artist GRAMMY? Who Will Voters Pick For Best Pop Album? John BillingsPhoto: Jesse Grant/WireImage/Getty Images Album Of The Year vs. Record Of The Year Explained 2019 GRAMMY Awards Premiere Ceremony BTSPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images 2019 GRAMMY Awards Red Carpet Artists React To Their 2019 GRAMMY Nominations TLC Photo: Alison Buck/Getty Images Who Will Voters Pick For Best Pop Album? Who Will Voters Pick For Best Latin Pop Album? Who Will Voters Choose For Best Alternative Album? Who Will Voters Choose For Best Alternative Album? GRAMMY In The Schools Live! Presents Alumni Performers For GRAMMY Week Lady GagaPhoto: Christopher Polk/Getty Images Twitter Cardi BPhoto: Dan MacMedan/WireImage Who Will Voters Pick For Best Rap Performance? 61st GRAMMY Awards: Full Nominees & Winners List Brandi Carlile, H.E.R. To Play The 61st GRAMMYs 2019 GRAMMY Awards Premiere Ceremony Album Of The Year vs. Record Of The Year Explained 61st GRAMMY Awards TLC Photo: Alison Buck/Getty Images 5 Ways BTS Won Our Hearts At The 2019 GRAMMYs 2019 GRAMMY Awards Premiere Ceremony Lady GagaPhoto: Christopher Polk/Getty Images Who Will Voters Pick For Best Rap Performance? Who’s Nominated For Song Of The Year? Poll: Who Will Voters Choose For Best Rap Album? Photo: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images John BillingsPhoto: Jesse Grant/WireImage/Getty Images Album Of The Year vs. Record Of The Year Explained Photo: studioEAST/Getty Images Poll: Who Do You Want To See On The Red Carpet? Amy Winehouse Best New Artist winner for 2007 | Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images GRAMMY In The Schools Live! Happening GRAMMY Week grammy-schools-live-presents-alumni-performers-grammy-week Alumni from the GRAMMY Museum’s many music education programs will perform at the special event on Feb. 7Philip MerrillGRAMMYs Jan 28, 2019 – 1:58 pm The GRAMMY Museum and Ford Motor Company Fund have announced the tenth annual GRAMMY In The Schools Live!—A Celebration of Music & Education. The GRAMMY Week event will take place on Feb. 7 at The Montalbán in Los Angeles.GRAMMY Museum Foundation’s music educational programs, which Ford helps support, include GRAMMY Camp, the GRAMMY Museum Summer Session, GRAMMY Career Day, and the Music Educator Award. Alumni of these varied music industry education programs will take the stage to perform at the special event.The still-to-be-announced recipient of the 2019 Music Educator Award will attend the festive evening, along with Ford Motor Company Fund Director of Community Development Pamela Alexander, Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow, and GRAMMY Museum Executive Director Mchael Sticka.GRAMMY Camp brings together talented high school students who are passionate about music from across the country, with eight educational tracks including instrumental performance, vocal performance, audio engineering, music journalism and more. The passion these young students bring to their performances is electrifying, suggesting more great things ahead. One GRAMMY Camp alumni, Maren Morris, is now a GRAMMY-winner, and is currently up for more wins this year, including for her feature on Zedd’s “The Middle.” Additionally, the GRAMMY Museum Summer Session matches young songwriters with industry professionals to help newcomers get a leg up on their own careers in the music business. The application deadline for this summer’s GRAMMY Camp in Los Angeles is March 31. The deadline to submit nominations for the 2020 Music Educator Award is March 15.Tickets are available for GRAMMY In The Schools Live! at The Montalbán’s website. GRAMMY Week culminates with the 61st GRAMMY Awards on Sun. Feb. 10 on CBS.GRAMMY Jazz Band Plays Duke Ellington, Count Basie & More | 2018 GRAMMY Week Backstage At The 2019 GRAMMYs | Photo Gallery Relive GRAMMY Week 2019 In Pictures 61st GRAMMYs: Here’s Your Apple Music Playlist Backstage At The 2019 GRAMMYs | Photo Gallery John BillingsPhoto: Jesse Grant/WireImage/Getty Images Artists React To Their 2019 GRAMMY Nominations Photo: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images Cardi B, Post Malone Among 2019 GRAMMYs Performers Kacey MusgravesPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images 61st GRAMMY Awards: Full Nominees & Winners List Poll: Who Will Voters Choose For Best Rap Album? Poll: Who Do You Want To See On The Red Carpet? Cardi B, Post Malone Among 2019 GRAMMYs Performers 2019 GRAMMY Awards Telecast | Photo Gallery Lady GagaPhoto: Christopher Polk/Getty Images Brandi Carlile, H.E.R. To Play The 61st GRAMMYs Record Of The Year 61st GRAMMY Award Nominees Poll: Who Will Voters Choose For Best Rap Album? Who’s Nominated For Song Of The Year? Amy Winehouse Best New Artist winner for 2007 | Photo: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images Poll: Who Do You Want To See On The Red Carpet? Best New Artist Nominees Revealed | 61st GRAMMYs Kacey MusgravesPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Photo: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images H.E.R.Photo by Prince Williams/Wireimage Who Will Voters Pick For Best Rap Performance? Who Is Eligible For The Best New Artist GRAMMY? Meet The GRAMMY Man: How GRAMMYs Are Made Meet The GRAMMY Man: How GRAMMYs Are Made BTSPhoto: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images Artists React To Their 2019 GRAMMY Nominations Best New Artist Nominees Revealed | 61st GRAMMYs Who Is Eligible For The Best New Artist GRAMMY? Photo: studioEAST/Getty Images 61st GRAMMY Awards: Full Nominees & Winners List 2019 GRAMMY Awards Telecast | Photo Gallery Read more
LAWRENCE, MA — Jeanne Burns, Assistant Principal and Academic Dean at Central Catholic High School, has announced the Academic Honor Roll of Students for the First Quarter of the 2018-2019 school year.The following Wilmington students were honored:High Honors (weighted GPA of 4.5 or higher)Andrew ReganAllison FischerHonors (no grade below a B)Jason BerubeMadison GuyCameron MarzilliAbigail ReganAs a college preparatory school offering four distinct academic levels of challenge to students based on their achievement and effort, CCHS recognized and celebrates all students who are achieving academic success in their custom curricular programs.(NOTE: The above announcement is from Central Catholic High School.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email email@example.com.Thank You To Our Sponsor:Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedSTUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Wilmington’s Rachel DiFronzo Named To Honor Roll At Bishop FenwickIn “Education”STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: 6 Wilmington Students Earn Academic Honors At St. John’s PrepIn “Education”STUDENT SPOTLIGHT: Wilmington’s Lanesha Joseph Named To Honor Roll At St. Joseph PrepIn “Education”
WILMINGTON, MA — Below are job listings previously published on Wilmington Apple during the week of February 3, 2019:Full-Time Warehouse Person (Loader) at Pepsi Co.Part-Time Merchandiser at Pepsi Co.Full-Time Customer Service Manager at Serur AgenciesFull-Time Shipper/Receiver at AJ Mailing CompanyFull-Time Customer Service Representative at Parts4HeatingFull-Time Customer Service Rep at SpeedwayFull-Time Claims Representative at AmetrosFull-Time Customer Support at AltroPart-Time Worker at Garrick-Santo Landscaping Co.Full-Time Team Leaders at TargetPart-Time Crew Member at McDonald’sPart-Time Summer Coaches & Directors at Skyhawks Sports AcademyFull-Time Receptionist at Stuffed FoodsFull-Time Office Manager at Super Service TodayFull-Time Maintenance Technician at Stafford Manufacturing Corp.Full-Time Data Presort & Laser Printing at AJ Mailing CompanyFull-Time Warehouse Loader at Pepsi Co.Full-Time Manufacturing Technician at AmetekFull-Time Construction Project Manager at Channel BuildingFull-Time HR Business Partner at Charles River LabsFull-Time Service Technician at Cochrane VentilationFull-Time Sample Program Manager at Analog DevicesFull-Time RF Test Technician at Analog DevicesFull-Time Driver/Courier at Kirkwood PrintingFull-Time Operations Manager at Patterson CompaniesPart-Time Assistant Preschool Teacher at Abundant Life Christian Learning CenterPart-Time Residential Life Coach at NuPathFull-Time Account Executive at ComcastFull-Time Club Manager at Planet FitnessFull-Time Assistant Manager at Planet FitnessFull-Time Counter Sales Associate at Lennox InternationalFull-Time Solar Site Surveyor at Vivint SolarPart-Time Engineering Intern at Analog DevicesPart-Time Marketing Events Intern (Summer) at Charles River LabsFull-Time Sanitation Worker at Stuffed FoodsFull-Time Warehouse Associate at NAPA Auto PartsFull-Time Movers & Drivers at Two Men And A TruckFull-Time QA Manager at SpectraPart-Time Security Officer at Allied UniversalFull-Time Manufacturing Technician at Kelly ServicesFull-Time Customer Service Representative at Heilind ElectronicsFull-Time EMC Lab Technician at Analog DevicesFull-Time Technician I at Charles River LabsFull-Time Medical Network Manager at AmetrosFull-Time Sales Office Manager at Harrington Industrial PlasticsFull-Time Warehouse Lead/Back Up Driver at Harrington Industrial PlasticsFull-Time ABA Classroom Counselor at May InstituteFull-Time Clinical Supervisor at May InstitutePart-Time Package Handler at FedEx WarehouseFull-Time & Part-Time Servers at 99 Restaurant(NOTE: Wilmington businesses — Feel free to send me your job postings at firstname.lastname@example.org.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email email@example.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedNOW HIRING: 50 New Job Openings In Wilmington (Week of August 18, 2019)In “Business”NOW HIRING: 50 New Job Openings In Wilmington (Week of June 23, 2019)In “Business”NOW HIRING: 60 New Job Openings In Wilmington (Week of June 30, 2019)In “Business”
WILMINGTON, MA — The Wilmington High School Varsity Softball team (12-5) defeated Lowell Catholic by a score of 1-0 on Friday, May 24, 2019.Both team’s pitchers threw three hitters and had great defense behind them. Neither team could put forth serious threats.In the top of the first inning, Ashley Crawford doubled. She advanced to third and eventually scored on passed balls.Chase Andersen made two excellent plays at third base and was a vital part of a combination play in the bottom of the sixth that helped to preserve the victory. With two outs, Lowell Catholic’s number two hitter doubled to left field and was awarded third on an obstruction call. With the third hitter at the plate, she attempted a steal of home, but was erased on a 2-5-3 play. Ashley Crawford received the pitch from Ally Moran and she chased the runner back to third before throwing the ball back to third basemen Chase Andersen. Andersen forced the runner back towards home plate and threw to first basemen Bella Kieran covering the plate for the third out of the inning.Ally Moran retired the side in order in the seventh for another shutout victory for the Wildcats.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWHS SOFTBALL: Wildcats Win Back-To-Back Games, Moran Gives Up 3 Hits While Striking Out 22In “Sports”WHS SOFTBALL: Wildcats Defeat Lexington, Moran Picks Up Another WinIn “Sports”WHS SOFTBALL: Wildcats Lose To Melrose By 1 Run, Storm Back With 12-Run Win Over Greater LowellIn “Sports”
See It Read Google Home Hub review Galaxy’s Edge from every angle: We take you along for… Rylo 5.8K 360 Video Camera: $250 (save $250) $59 at eBay Mentioned Above Apple iPhone XS (64GB, space gray) Post a comment Other Labor Day sales you should check out Best Buy: In addition to some pretty solid MacBook deals that have been running for about a week already, Best Buy is offering up to 40% off major appliances like washers, dryers and stoves. There are also gift cards available with the purchase of select appliances. See it at Best BuyDell: Through Aug. 28, Dell is offering an extra 12% off various laptops, desktops and electronics. And check back starting Aug. 29 for a big batch of Labor Day doorbusters. See it at DellGlassesUSA: Aug. 29 – Sept. 3 only, you can save 65% on all frames with promo code labor65. See it at GlassesUSALenovo: The tech company is offering a large assortment of deals and doorbusters through Labor Day, with the promise of up to 56% off certain items — including, at this writing, the IdeaPad 730S laptop for $700 (save $300).See it at LenovoLensabl: Want to keep the frames you already love and paid for? Lensabl lets you mail them in for new lenses, based on your prescription. From now through Sept. 2 only, you can save 20% on the blue light-blocking lens option with promo code BLOCKBLUE. See it at LensablSears: Between now and Sept. 7, you can save up to 40% on appliances (plus an additional 10% if you shop online), up to 60% on mattresses, up to 50% on Craftsman products and more. The store is also offering some fairly hefty cashback bonuses. See it at SearsNote: This post was published previously and is continuously updated with new information.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page, and find more great buys on the CNET Deals page. Amazon Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. Rylo $520 at HP Tidal 3-month family subscription: $5.99 (save $54) 0 The Cheapskate $999 Sarah Tew/CNET $999 Share your voice Spotify and most other streaming services rely on compressed audio, which robs the listener of full fidelity. Enter Tidal, the only “major” service that delivers lossless audio — meaning at least on par with CD quality, if not better. Want to see (er, hear) the difference for yourself? Grab this excellent extended trial while you can. It’s just $6 for three months, and it’s good for up to six listeners. $155 at Google Express I thought this might be a mistake, but, no, the weirdly named HP Laptop 15t Value is indeed quite the value at this price. Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB solid-state drive and a 15.6-inch display. However, I strongly recommend paying an extra $50 to upgrade that display to FHD (1,920×1,080), because you’re not likely to be happy with the native 1,366×768 resolution. Studio Ghibli’s Totoro and The Catbus at MCM London Comic Con. Ollie Millington/WireImage/Getty A Studio Ghibli theme park is being built in Japan, reports say.The park, based on the Tokyo anime studio’s films, will be in Expo 2005 Aichi Commemorative Park near Nagoya, according to Variety, and will open in fall 2022.It’s expected to have five themed areas, including Princess Mononoke and Howl’s Moving Castle. My Neighbor Totoro will also be featured in the park, IGN reported. Academy Award-winning film Spirited Away was not mentioned in either report.During a press conference Friday, Studio Ghibli producer Toshio Suzuki reportedly said film creator Hayao Miyazaki is working on the park’s creative side.”[Miyazaki] can’t leave anything up to other people. He’s a meddlesome old man,” Variety reported Suzuki as saying. “[He] is not the type to look on supportively from a distance. He starts in right away with ‘do this’ and ‘don’t do that.'” $261 at Daily Steals via Google Express Read DJI Osmo Action preview The problem with most entry-level laptops: They come with mechanical hard drives. That makes for a mighty slow Windows experience. This Lenovo model features a 128GB solid-state drive, so it should be pretty quick to boot and load software, even with its basic processor. Plus, it has a DVD-burner! That’s not something you see in many modern laptops, especially at this price. Read Lenovo Smart Clock review Culture TV and Movies,I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn that stores are turning Labor Day into an excuse to sell stuff. Wait — no, I’m not. As much as I respect the original intent of the holiday (which became official back in 1894), to most of us, it’s just a bonus day off — one that’s blissfully tacked onto a weekend. So, yeah, stores; go ahead, run your sales. I’m listening. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Labor Day doesn’t bring out bargains to compete with the likes of Black Friday (which will be here before you know it), but there are definitely some sales worth your time.For example:We’ve rounded up the best Labor Day mattress deals.We’ve also gathered the best Labor Day laptop deals at Best Buy.The 2019 Vizio P Series Quantum is back under $999.Be sure to check out Amazon’s roughly three dozen Labor Day deals on TVs and audio. Google Express is having a big sale as well, one that includes deals on game consoles, AirPods, iPhones, laptops and more.Below I’ve rounded up a handful of individual items I consider to be the cream of the crop, followed by a handy reference guide to other Labor Day sales. Keep in mind, of course, that products may sell out at any time, even if the sale itself is still running. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. Sprint $999 Angela Lang/CNET Formerly known as the Google Home Hub, Google’s Nest Hub packs a wealth of Google Assistant goodness into a 7-inch screen. At $59, this is within a buck of the best price we’ve seen. It lists for $129 and sells elsewhere in the $89-to-$99 range.This is one item of many available as part of eBay’s Labor Day Sale (which, at this writing, doesn’t specifically mention Labor Day, but that’s how it was pitched to us). See at Turo Preview • iPhone XS is the new $1,000 iPhone X Best Buy Sarah Tew/CNET Comments Now playing: Watch this: What’s cooler: A snapshot of a firework exploding in front of you, or full 360-degree video of all the fireworks and all the reactions to seeing them? Oooh, ahhh, indeed. At $250, the compact Rylo dual-lens camera is selling for its lowest price yet. And for an extra $50, you can get the bundle that includes the waterproof housing.This deal runs through Sept. 3; it usually costs $500. 15:04 Turo: Save $30 on any car rental Share your voice Free Echo Dot with an Insignia or Toshiba TV (save $50) See It Lenovo Smart Clock: $59.99 (save $20) Lenovo 130-15AST 15.6-inch laptop: $210 (save $90) Apple iPhone XS Tags $90 at Daily Steals via Google Express Tags Chris Monroe/CNET An Echo Dot makes a fine match for any Fire edition TV, because you can use the latter to say things like, “Alexa, turn on the TV.” Right now, the 24-inch Insignia Fire TV Edition starts at just $100, while the 32-inch Toshiba Fire TV Editions is on sale for $130. Just add any Fire TV Edition to your cart, then add a third-gen Echo Dot, and presto: The latter is free. Turo Turo is kind of like Uber meets Airbnb: You borrow someone’s car, but you do all the driving. I’ve used it many times and found it a great alternative to traditional car-rental services — in part because you get to choose exactly the vehicle you want (not just, say, “midsize”) and in part because you can often do pickup and dropoff right outside baggage claim.Between now and Sept. 1, the first 300 people to check out can get $30 off any Turo rental with promo code LDW30. Read the AirPods review DJI’s answer to GoPro’s action cameras is rugged little model that’s shockproof, dustproof and waterproof down to 11 meters. It normally runs $350, but this deal drops it to $261 when you apply promo code 19LABOR10 at checkout. $299 at Amazon $999 Google Nest Hub: $59 (save $70) See it JBL Soundgear wearable speaker: $90 (save $160) Use promo code 19LABOR10 to get an unusually good deal on JBL’s interesting hybrid product — not quite headphones, and not quite a traditional speaker, but something you wear like neckphones to listen to music on the go. See at Amazon 7 See It $210 at Best Buy Review • iPhone XS review, updated: A few luxury upgrades over the XR DJI Osmo Action camera: $261 (save $89) TVs Speakers Mobile Accessories Cameras Laptops Automobiles Smart Speakers & Displays Sarah Tew/CNET Sarah Tew/CNET Boost Mobile $60 at Best Buy Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $155 (save $45) CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Though not technically a Labor Day sale, it’s happening during Labor Day sale season — and it’s too good not to share. Nationwide Distributors, via Google Express, has just about the best AirPods deal we’ve seen (when you apply promo code ZBEDWZ at checkout). This is for the second-gen AirPods with the wireless charging case. Can’t imagine these will last long at this price, so if you’re interested, act fast. Read the Rylo camera preview $6 at Tidal HP Laptop 15t Value: $520 (save $780) Recently updated to include digital-photo-frame capabilities, the Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant goodness to your nightstand. It’s a little smaller than the Amazon Echo Show 5, but also a full $30 less (and tied with Prime Day pricing) during this Best Buy Labor Day sale.
7:38 OnePlus was “inspired by classic geometric progression” for its TV logo. OnePlus OnePlus sought ideas for the name of its smart TV from fans shortly after revealing its plans to enter that market last September. It announced its decision Wednesday in its forum: OnePlus TV. Along with this “simple yet to-the-point” name, the Chinese company opted for a straightforward logo, by adding “TV” to its standard symbol.”We believe there’s no other name that can best represent our value, vision and pride than naming it with our own brand,” a spokesperson wrote.The post didn’t hint at the OnePlus TV’s release date, but The Next Web reports it’ll launch in September. OnePlus didn’t immediately respond to a request for further comment.Earlier this month, MySmartPrice highlighted a Bluetooth SIG listing that refers to OnePlus’ offering as a “unique Android TV” that uses an LED display, rather than OLED, along with hints that it’ll range in size from 43 to 75 inches. We dunk the OnePlus 7 Pro underwater Now playing: Watch this: Share your voice TVs Tech Industry Post a comment 24 Photos Originally published at 3:02 a.m. PT.Update, 3:20 a.m. PT: Adds more detail. 0 OnePlus OnePlus 7 Pro is big, blue and budget friendly Tags
Could it be an autonomous off-road machine? Audi Audi has so far revealed three AI-branded concept cars in the past few years, but it’s ready to complete the quartet with what it calls the AI:Trail concept.On Friday, the German luxury brand revealed a teaser for the upcoming concept vehicle ahead of its premiere at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show in September. The company called it an “electrically driven off-roader” and the shadowy photo appears to underscore that it will, indeed, focus on off-roading. There’s a set of knobby tires present and the AI:Trail looks to sit pretty high off the ground, which would bode well for tougher terrains. The main set of doors appear hinged in the middle in a more untraditional fashion and the vast amount of glass teases an open and airy cabin. All of Audi’s AI concepts have focused on self-driving technology and this concept car should follow the same trend.It’s hard to tell what’s going on at the front and rear, but the taillight design appears to mimic the look from previous AI concepts. The past three concepts debuted in Frankfurt and China: the Aicon, Elaine and the AI:Me (is that like “Amy?”). The Aicon focused on Level 5 self-driving, which is the highest on the SAE scale of autonomy, while the Elaine showed off Level 4 autonomous technology. The AI:Me from the Shanghai Auto Show earlier this year presented a vision of urban autonomous driving and even boasted a virtual reality-infused cockpit.Each of the three concept cars have showcased an ambitious and optimistic look at future technology down the road. I wouldn’t say any of the four concepts directly hint at a specific upcoming vehicle, but perhaps we’ll see autonomous off-roaders at some point in our lifetimes. 2019 Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 Bison: A tougher off-roader 0 2019 Jeep Cherokee can handle the rough stuff Now playing: Watch this: Acura MDXMoving up one slot to sixth place on the American Made Index is the non-hybrid variant of the Acura MDX. With its SH-AWD system, the MDX is one of the better handling midsize luxury crossovers, and for 2019 the company gives us the A-Spec treatment with a new front fascia and side skirts, 20-inch wheels, wider exhaust tips, unique gauges, a new steering wheel, carbon fiber trim and various Alcantara interior touches.However, both the standard and A-Spec models get a 3.5-liter V6 engine, rated for 290 horsepower and 267 pound-feet of torque going through a nine-speed automatic transmission. The Acura MDX is made in East Liberty, Ohio. 2019 Acura MDX adds new features and an A-Spec model 3 Honda RidgelineAgain keeping the status quo, the Honda Ridgeline maintains third place on the American Made Index. This crossover-that-looks-like-a-truck provides a better ride than a traditional pickup and gets an awesome lockable trunk right in the floor of the bed. And it doesn’t do the truck stuff too badly, either, as it’s able to carry 1,860 pounds of payload and tow 3,500 pounds.The Ridgeline is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 good for 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. That is channeled through a six-speed automatic transmission with available all-wheel drive. It’s built in Lincoln, Alabama. 2019 Acura RDX A-Spec: Sharp handling, sharper looks 69 Photos 2019 Chevrolet Corvette Grand Sport loves to hustle Honda PilotDropping down to seventh place for 2019 is the Honda Pilot. Like its two-row Passport sibling, the three-row Pilot offers parent-focused technology like Cabin Talk as well as myriad standard driver-assistance features through the Honda Sensing tech suite. Honda’s largest crossover offers up nearly 84 cubic feet of cargo space. Honda’s 3.5-liter V6 engine shows up again, making a serviceable 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Touring and Elite trims get a nine-speed automatic transmission while lower trims have to make do with a six-speed auto. The Honda Pilot is made in Lincoln, Alabama. Post a comment 2019 GMC Canyon: A fancier Colorado Concept Cars Electric Cars Comments Frankfurt Motor Show 2019 Audi 2020 Mercedes-Benz GLC-Class first drive: If it ain’t broke… Audi’s Aicon is an autonomous EV concept writ large 68 Photos Honda PassportThe Honda Passport is a new (well, reborn) entry to both the Honda lineup and the American Made Index. This midsize crossover comes to the fray with great driving dynamics and plenty of tech like the standard Honda Sensing suite of active safety features. An available 8-inch touchscreen gets Apple CarPlay and Android Auto as well as a Wi-Fi hotspot.Under the hood is the stalwart 3.5-liter V6 producing 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. However unlike the Ridgeline, the Passport sends that power through a nine-speed automatic transmission. Having said that, just like the Ridgeline, this is the only powertrain available. The Honda Passport is built in Lincoln, Alabama. Honda OdysseyThe feature-rich Honda Odyssey minivan also retains its number-two slot from last year’s list. While the 2019 model doesn’t see any changes from last, it’s still a darn good choice for families on the go with reconfigurable seats, Wi-Fi and an excellent rear-seat entertainment system. The Cabin Watch video system lets parents keep an eye on their little darlings without turning around in their seats, while Cabin Talk amplifies their voice so no yelling is required.The Odyssey is powered by a 3.5-liter V6 rated for 280 horsepower and 262 pound-feet of torque. Most trims get a nine-speed automatic but the top Touring and Elite trims now use a 10-speed automatic with stop-start technology. The Honda Odyssey is made in Lincoln, Alabama. More From Roadshow 52 Photos 2020 Bentley Continental GT: Concept looks with a surprise inside Audi’s Aicon offers Level 5 autonomy on a grand scale 10 Photos 2019 Honda Ridgeline review: Light duty, heavy punch 1:41 Share your voice 2019 Chevy Colorado ZR2 Bison: An off-road animal Audi,Enlarge ImageIt’s all in a day’s work for the Jeep Cherokee, the most American-made car in 2019. Jeep With high trade tensions looming and increasing talk of tariffs, more and more consumers are looking to buy American. Cars.com has released its annual American Made Index, showcasing companies that use the most American-sourced parts and labor in their vehicles. The results may surprise you.Cars.com analyzed more than 100 US-built vehicles for five key data points: manufacturing location, parts sourcing, US employment, engine sourcing and transmission sourcing. You might think something like the Ford F-150 would top the list, but it drops from its No. 5 spot for 2018 and out of the top 10 completely. Even the first-place holder, the Jeep Cherokee, is a pretty global product. It’s a Jeep, sure, but that brand is part of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles, an Italian-owned business.Cars.com surveyed 1,000 people and found that half are concerned about automotive import tariffs, with 41% saying they are unsure if tariffs would make them more likely to buy American. Either way, we’re big fans of all the vehicles on this list. These days, buying American doesn’t necessarily mean sticking with a US-based automaker. General Motors Chevrolet Honda Jeep Acura 49 Photos 2019 Honda Pilot Elite: A smoother, tech-rich crossover SUV Tags 26 Photos 2019 Honda Odyssey offers plenty of room and features for families 71 Photos Tags 2019 Honda Passport: A well-rounded midsize offering Chevrolet CorvetteMoving up from the 10th-place slot last year is the 2019 Chevrolet Corvette. While we’ve all been ogling the new mid-engine Corvette, it’s easy to forget what a performance bargain the current-generation ‘Vette is. From the base trim to the Grand Sport to the bonkers ZR1, the Corvette is an American icon.My preference is for the Grand Sport, which strikes a perfect balance between everyday drivability and canyon-carving performance. The 6.2-liter V8 puts out 460 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. You can get it with a seven-speed manual or eight-speed automatic transmission, but the kicker is the borrowed chassis and aero parts from the beefier Z06. Like I said, perfect balance. The Corvette is made in Bowling Green, Kentucky. GMC CanyonIf you’re looking for a slightly fancier version of the Colorado that’s more focused on luxe than dirt, check out the GMC Canyon. The top Denali trim gets standard heated and ventilated front seats as well as a heated steering wheel. Maximum payload capability is 1,665 pounds while max towing is a fairly healthy 7,600 pounds.The Canyon is available with the same 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, 3.6-liter V6 or 2.8-liter diesel as the Chevrolet Colorado. It’s also built in Wentzville, Missouri. Jeep CherokeeKeeping its top-of-the-list placement, the Jeep Cherokee is 2019’s most American-made car. Refreshed for 2019, the compact crossover now features more tech, better cargo space and a slightly tweaked look. It’s available in no fewer the nine trims, including the off-road specific Trailhawk and a fancy-pants Trailhawk Elite.For 2019, the Cherokee gets a new 2.0-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine with 270 horsepower and 295 pound-feet of torque, though naturally aspirated I4 and V6 choices are also available. Regardless of engine, a nine-speed automatic transmission gets the power to the pavement — or dirt as the case may be. The Cherokee is made in Belvidere, Illinois. Car Industry 81 Photos 27 Photos More From Roadshow Chevrolet ColoradoMaking its debut in the top 10 is the Chevrolet Colorado. Shown here in the tough ZR2 Bison off-road spec, the Chevy Colorado is an excellent truck and one of the two midsize pickups you can get with a diesel engine. Adding to the ZR2’s two-inch lift and front and rear locking differentials, the Bison gets beefier skid plates (trust me, that’s a good thing), steel bumpers and integrated recovery points. Heck, you can even get a snorkel.Base models get a 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine with a six-speed manual transmission, but a more popular choice is the 3.6-liter V6 gas engine with 308 horsepower and 275 pound-feet of torque, mated to an eight-speed automatic transmission. Meanwhile, the 2.8-liter diesel pumps out 186 horsepower and a delicious 369 pound-feet of twist and is mated to a six-speed automatic. The Chevy Colorado is built in Wentzville, Missouri. 2019 GMC Sierra Denali review: So close to greatness Share your voice 2019 Honda Ridgeline: The commuter’s pickup truck Acura RDXThe third-generation Acura RDX squeaks into the top ten list with larger proportions, plenty of interior space and better handling than its predecessor. Forward collision warning with collision mitigation braking, adaptive cruise control that works even in low-speed traffic, lane-keeping steering assist and road departure mitigation are all standard across the board. Like its MDX counterpart, the RDX is available with the A-Spec styling package.The RDX sports a 2.0-liter, turbocharged, four-cylinder engine. Output is stated at 273 horsepower and 280 pound-feet of torque, and it’s mated to a 10-speed automatic transmission. The new RDX is built in East Liberty, Ohio. 2020 Mini JCW Clubman first drive: A fast alternative for the crossover-averse 18 Photos 12 Photos
Sealaska holds its annual shareholders’ meeting Saturday near Seattle. A new CEO will take over, as will a new board chairman or woman. And, at least one new board member will be seated.All will face the challenges of a new economic reality. The Juneau-based regional Native corporation has been losing money and plans for recovery are uncertain.Download AudioSealaska recently told its about 22,000 shareholders about its financial problems.The corporation’s annual report showed operational losses of about $57 million last year. Revenues from investments and other sources brought that down around $35 million, but it’s still a lot of money.Outgoing CEO Chris McNeil Jr. says Sealaska is doing fine. It has a three-point plan to bounce back.“One, of course, is achieving our land entitlement before Congress. The second is making one or more highly profitable acquisitions in 2015. And then also, it would have to significantly increase its federal contracting with higher margins.”The first is controversial federal legislation turning 70,000 to 80,000 acres of Tongass National Forest timberland over to the corporation.Sealaska Plaza, the corporation’s headquarters.It’s stalled in Congress. But if it’s passed, it will allow Sealaska to reinvigorate its shrunken logging subsidiary, once the corporation’s economic powerhouse.Rick Harris is executive vice president of the corporation.“We will be effectively running out of timber by the end of this year or sometime early in 2015,” Harris says.Some of the targeted timberlands have high-value, old-growth forest. Others have, or will have, second- or young- growth trees big enough to fell and sell.Harris says Sealaska is developing markets for those smaller trees, which already make up a fifth of timber sales.“We’re working with the customer, we’re working with them to identify the supply we have, both for mature timber and second growth. And then helping build a plan, with our customers, so we will be able to supply their needs and that they have the mills that are capable of handling the type of wood that we can deliver,” Harris says.Carlton Smith is one of four business-oriented shareholders running for the board as a slate.“The board has struggled with replacing timber income. And we’ve had 20 years to plan for this,” Smith says.He says Sealaska would do better getting involved in Alaska’s oil and gas industry and helping shareholders find employment there.One way, he says, is to join other Native corporations campaigning against repealing the state’s oil and gas tax structure.“We need to make a commitment to the future of Sealaska’s involvement in Alaska commerce. And that takes place in Anchorage,” Smith says.Smith wants the corporation to open an office in the state’s largest city.Karen Taug, another member of the shareholders slate, says it’s time to close or at least move Sealaska’s office in Bellevue, Wash. That’s the home of several subsidiaries, as well as the CEO’s main office.“They could very well pay rent somewhere else at a much cheaper rate, rather than in a high-rent area of Bellevue. Q: Does it seem to you that that was created so Chris McNeil could live and work down south? A: Yes,” Taug says.Corporate officials won’t give many details of the second part of their recovery plan, to buy one or several new, profitable business. That’s because it’s still being developed.But McNeil says they’re considering areas that could employ shareholders in Southeast Alaska or the Pacific Northwest.“We’ve taken another look and will continue to look in the fisheries sectors,” McNeil says.Other areas include organic foods and expanded mariculture.Sealaska’s already backing small, tribally-owned oyster farms. VP Harris says it creates businesses that take a realistic approach to village employment.“Jobs that are the kind of thing people that want to do. And it’s consistent with the way they live their lives, instead of us coming and saying you have to change the way you live in order to have a job. We’re saying, let’s create jobs that meet your needs,” Harris says.Shellfish farming is part of Sealaska’s Haa Aani division, which focuses on job development within Southeast.But Smith and some other critics say that’s not where to look if you’re trying to boost corporate profits.“I don’t know how a company that’s not making money by itself can be generating economic development elsewhere. And even though it theoretically does touch the lives of our shareholders, it certainly would not be the No. 1 priority at the moment,” Smith says.Corporate officials say Sealaska needs to try to get more leverage out of government contracting.But contracting is part of the corporation’s problems. About $26 million was lost when that subsidiary badly underestimated two federal construction projects in Hawaii.The independent slate’s Ross Soboleff also wants to lower costs by reducing pay and bonuses for board members and top managers.“My personal opinion about the board compensation now is it’s high. And when the top levels of your company tighten their belts and cut their own expenses, it sets a very important precedent and the tone of the company,” Soboleff says.Soboleff, Taug and Smith are three of 13 candidates running for Sealaska’s board. Their slate also has a fourth member, Margaret Nelson.Three board incumbents are seeking re-election: Sidney Edenshaw, Ed Thomas and Rosita Worl.Other candidates running independently are Myrna Gardner, Mick Beasley, Michelle McConkey, Will Micklin, Edward Sarabia Jr. and Ralph Wolfe.CEO McNeil will officially retire at the annual meeting. Treasurer and chief investment officer Anthony Mallott will take his place.
Nude is what is it is called. Nude is artsy and sophisticated. But when I crumpled onto the small wooden platform, I was just plain old naked. And then when I crawled the several feet between me and my robe, I was even more naked.Download AudioApparently, I am told by everyone I have ever told this story to that if one stands with locked knees for too long with locked knees, one faints. Apparently, everyone knows this. I wish I could say collapsing onto a wooden platform, while naked, was the hardest thing that happened as an art model.It wasn’t.Walking into the classroom for the first time, naked under my robe, was harder than pretty much anything else I’ve done. Wedding day – easy. Childbirth – pudding. Climbing mountains – yawn city.The classroom door had a small glass window that I could peer through. I saw them all in there, waiting. I had applied for the job. I had agreed to work. I did want the best paying college job on campus, but I could not open the door. Staying behind the door meant I could still run away. I told myself it would be good for me. I tried to think of other things that would be good for me, but scary, tweezing nose hairs, eating eggs without toast. I still couldn’t open the door.I told myself the artists didn’t know me. After all, I was one of many models. I would act aloof. I would pretend experience. I would feign boredom, ‘Oh, naked in front of strangers again.’I opened the door. I walked in. I stepped up on the stage.“Here’s the model,” the instructor said, “Let’s make her feel welcome, it’s her first time.”I had been naked before. I was naked before. In fact, I had been naked in front of other people, a few. Sure, it was more like slinking naked in front of one person, or dodging naked in front of another. I had never stood face on in front of 20. And certainly not face on in the bright light that streamed through the windows and surrounded by hot floodlights.“Model, model – we’re ready,” the instructor said. My sweaty hand pulled the robe tie. My shoulder shrugged the robe off and tossed it off to the side. And then I stood there and didn’t breath. And I’m sure I didn’t breath for at least a couple of minutes.I did note that that not breathing could cause fainting, so despite the thundering heartbeat in my ears, the cold sweat on my neck and an intense need to urinate, I eventually took a breath.And then I modeled.Although the first time was quite traumatic, when I’m asked what the hardest part of the job was, it wasn’t being barenaked, it was not moving. Unless one is getting paid to sit, or stand, or lie down motionless, I don’t think one would ever try this. One pose could last for 45 minutes. Let’s say it’s a reclining pose, one arm down on my back, the other arm bent and resting across my forehead. The pose feels fine, for a minute.Three minutes into it, my arm, resting on my forehead, becomes heavy. Five minutes into it, my arm becomes The Arm. Eight minutes, I begin to worry about nerve damage to the arm. Then I worry about nerve damage to the forehead. At 12 minutes, I’m certain the brain is at risk. 17 minutes, breathing, trying to stay calm. 21 minutes trying to pretend I am somewhere else, somewhere without a log pressing on my forehead.26 minutes and I’m walking on a white sandy beach. Breath in, Breath out. 35 minutes and I’m sure I will quit, no job is worth brain damage. 42 minutes and I think about tweezing my nose hair. 45 minutes and the instructor says, “That will be all, model.”And then using the arm that is still my arm to pry the arm that is a log off the forehead and then placing the log next to the body and then trying to get up, trying to pretend that it is easy to get up.Stepping off the stage numb, aloof and barenaked.
Fairbanks city councilman David Pruhs is sponsoring an ordinance that would ban marijuana clubs. Clubs, which do not sell the drug, but provide paying members a venue for its consumption, are not currently covered by state regulations, but the state marijuana control board is looking at requiring them to be licensed, like cannabis retailers. Pruhs says his ordinance would allow for clubs licensed as part of retail operations.Download AudioCannabis Plant. (Photo by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service)“We’ll be amending the city code for public use for that. So anyone who wants to have a marijuana club in the city of Fairbanks, go out and get a retail license and add it to your marijuana club.”Pruhs says retail license status would put clubs under the same regulations as other marijuana businesses, including local zoning.Fairbanks’ only marijuana Club, “The Higher Calling,” is across the street from a downtown daycare, a location that would violate borough zoning if it were a retail operation. The club’s owners have said they’re considering relocation, and will get a license if required to.The city marijuana club prohibition ordinance is being introduced at tonight’s Fairbanks City Council meeting.
Joar Leifseth Ulsom at the 2016 Iditarod ceremonial start in Anchorage. (Photo by Emily Schwing/KNOM)Red, white and blue flags flew high at this year’s Iditarod start line, but they weren’t the flags one might expect at an American race.These flags bear the Scandinavian cross and they were flown by fans who came out to cheer on more than ten percent of the race field.There are more Scandinavians in this year’s Iditarod than ever before.Iditarod – Day 1Two Anchorage-based Team Norway fans at the 2016 Iditarod starting line in Willow. (Photo by Ben Matheson)“Ve elskar deg.” It’s one of the cheers a group of fans threw out as a dog teams surged down the trail out of Willow.Dan Lien appears to be the group’s ring leader.“We are proud members of the sons of Norway in Anchorage and so we bring our flags and yell a few phrases at ‘em,” Lien said.Lien says they come every year, but this one is special because there are eight mushers from Norway – and one Swede.“We yelled at him down the trail, we said we don’t have any Swedish flags, and he said close enough,” Lien said.It comes as no surprise that a region packed with wilderness, mountains and a winter season on par with Alaska’s is home to mushers, like Robert Sorlie. He brought a dog team from Norway for a sixth shot at a top finish.“It’s the biggest and the most powerful race in the world so everybody wants to do this race, you know,” Sorlie said.Musher Robert Sorlie at the 2016 Iditarod ceremonial start in Anchorage. (Photo by Zachariah Hughes/KSKA)In 2003 and 2005, Sorlie drove his team to victory. He’s the only champion that isn’t American. He’s also been known to sing to his dogs.“Yeah I think I will sing some songs for them, but I will not sing it for you, because when … I’m not ready to sing it on the radio, no,” he said.Sorlie’s competitor, Sigrid Ekran also brought a team from Norway. She says she doesn’t have big expectations for her fourth Iditarod, but she could be a worthy competitor, having won three European world championships in the last five years.She’s claimed victory in both of Norway’s largest and longest sled dog races: the Femondsløpet once and the Finnmarksløpet twice.“Scandinavia is definitely a good place to run dogs and there’s a lot of good dog mushers there now,” Ekran said. “I think everyone that runs long distance ahs a dream of running the Iditarod. The Iditarod is like the Olympics of long distance, you know.”“Yeah, that’s true. Absolutely,” Mats Pettersson said. He is this Iditarod’s lone Swede. “When you’ve done this one time, you want to be here.”“It’s the number one race, but I hope also more people from the U.S. can come over to Scandinavia in the long run and we could have more races. That would be the best I think.”Race officials from the Finnmarksløpet reportedly visited with Iditarod Trail Committee officials earlier this winter to discuss future cooperation, but the outcome of that meeting is unclear.In the meantime, Pettersson will shoot for a top-ten finish in this his third run to Nome. He says the most competitive among the Norwegian teams don’t intimidate him.Pettersson: “I get along with all these Norwegians and we are really friends out on the trail.”Schwing: “So, there’s no Swedish-Norwegian rivalry?”Pettersson: “No, only in skiing – the Norwegians are better in that, but we are better in ice hockey!”There’s one Scandinavian whose race plan stands out more than any other – Ketil Reitan.“I’m going to do a long camping trip after the race,” he said.Sigrid Ekran. (Photo by Ben Matheson)It’s been 21 years since Reitan has driven a team on the Iditarod trail.From Nome, he says he’ll mush back to his home in Kaktovik, more than twice the distance of the actual race.“There’s no trail and no trail markers,” Reitan said. “So we are looking forward to that and we are going to stop in the villages and visit and meet lots of people, so we are looking forward to that.”Reitan says the seeming Scandinavian Iditarod invasion is really nothing new.“Ten percent is nothing,” he said. “In the earlier races in Nome, a hundred years ago, almost half the mushers were Norwegian, so 10 percent is nothing.”But a hundred years ago, Alaska was only a U.S. territory and the famous Serum Run to Nome hadn’t even taken place.
Big Brothers Big Sisters of Alaska will no longer make new matches between youths and volunteers in four Alaska communities: Haines, Homer, Hoonah and Sitka.Listen nowThe organization, which matches volunteers and youth for one-on-one mentoring, says it’s a matter of reduced federal and state grant funding.Rosalie Loewen opens a filing cabinet at the Big Brothers Big Sisters office in downtown Haines, filled with file folders for hundreds of mentors and youths they’ve served.“Well, it’s packed in there so tight that I can’t actually fit any more in there,” Loewen said.As she’s getting ready to close the office, Loewen says she’s been reflecting on all the lives that have been touched by the program over its 15 years in Haines.“I remember that it is not just the names that are in that filing cabinet but their siblings and their parents and all of the other kids in their classroom and just, it’s just a big piece of the way the fabric holds together for this community,” Loewen said.Loewen is the community director for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Haines, where for the past two years she has been responsible for all aspects of the program.The non-profit specializes in helping kids connect with adult mentors.Loewen said the program serves about 10 percent of youth in the Haines School.The change was announced Friday and goes into effect after May 31, 2018.Big Brothers Big Sisters will close their offices in the four communities and consolidate them to Anchorage or Juneau, where a dedicated staff specialist will focus on serving existing matches.Loewen said the closure is unfortunate.“It’s a little frustrating to see the program close now because research is showing us more and more that kids who experience developmental trauma, one of the most important things that you do that will create more positive outcome in their lives and help them overcome that challenge, is to match them with an adult mentor with a stable, healthy, positive relationship,” Loewen said.Loewen said that relationship creates a buffer for the child and it can mean that a level of stress for a child is manageable rather than toxic.That buffer is sometimes hard to find in rural communities.Divorce, death, incarceration, addiction — those are the big four reasons that a parent is unable to be involved with their kids and which create an opportunity for mentors to fill the gap.Even though serving rural kids through Big Brothers Big Sisters is expensive, like just about everything in rural Alaska, Loewen said it’s critical.“It’s a mistake to close this program down because in the rural areas the kids don’t have other programs that can fill in,” Loewen said. “Sometimes it’s a geographical issue where the people who sit on the statewide board are located in Anchorage and it’s hard for them to get that perspective.”In 2017, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Alaska served more than 580 youths across the state.The organization has an annual budget of $1.6 million and 20 employees.Big Brothers Big Sisters currently serves 19 matches in Haines, 19 in Hoonah, 14 in Sitka and 26 in Homer.The organization will continue making new matches in Anchorage, Fairbanks, Juneau and the Mat-Su Valley.The organization gets about half of its funding from federal and state grant monies, which are disappearing, Heather Harris, CEO for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Alaska, said.“We’re in a difficult financial place and we have to make incredibly difficult decisions. And this is not a decision that was made lightly by any means,” Harris said. “These communities and the youth that are in them are incredibly important to us and to the organization as a whole and we know we’ve done life-saving work in those communities.”Big Brothers Big Sisters has been working in Alaska since 1972.Harris is hopeful the organization will eventually be able to reopen their offices in the communities.Although she’s heartbroken about the Haines office closing, Loewen is also realistic, saying the days of big grants and free-flowing funds to solve the state’s social problems are over.“Things will have to be homegrown, come up from the bottom. But I feel not entirely pessimistic about that because, in my mind, that’s what Alaskan’s are really good at, pulling themselves up by the bootstraps and being independent and making things work,” Loewen said. “We’ve gotten used to a lot of top-down economics and now it’s time for a little bit of bottom-up work.”Staff in the four communities have been given the opportunity to continue on a part-time basis.Loewen will not be one of them. Loewen has one more young person on the waiting list for a mentor match and she plans on making that connection before she closes the Big Brothers Big Sisters office door in Haines one last time on April 13.
Stories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via email, podcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @AKPublicNewsListen nowWalker administration doubles down as cyber-security experts warn of China’s threat to AlaskaRashah McChesney, Alaska’s Energy Desk – JuneauGovernor’s office says there’s no conclusive proof China is spying on Alaska.Man in custody for fatal Alaska apartment fireAssociated PressA 30-year-old Alaska man has been taken into custody in connection with a 2017 Anchorage apartment complex fire that killed three people and injured others.Alaska man faces life in prison for Florida airport shootingAssociated PressAn Alaska man faces a life prison sentence in the January 2017 Florida airport shooting that left five people dead and six wounded.Kodiak-based district sees challenger to caucus-switching RepublicanAndrew Kitchneman, KTOO – JuneauThe Alaska primary on Tuesday could help determine who sets the agenda for the next legislature. Most of the contested primaries are among Republicans.Napakiak gets federal funding for erosion, climate change impactsTeresa Cotsirilos, KYUK – BethelThe village of Napakiak received $449,000 in federal funding on Thursday that could help them respond to the “imminent threat” of climate change.Cash from Congress will boost Alaska-based system that protects planes from volcanic ashNathaniel Herz, Alaska’s Energy Desk – AnchorageA $12 million budget boost from Congress will help modernize the instruments that protect transcontinental jet planes from threats posed by volcanic ash.Unalaska approves plastic bag ban, to take effect Jan. 1Laura Kraegel, KUCB – UnalaskaStarting next year, Unalaska retailers won’t be allowed to distribute single-use plastic bags to their customers. If they do, they’ll be hit with $100 fines each time.AK: One year after tragedy, stakes are high for Kake VPSOsAlanna Elder, KFSK – PetersburgLike many communities in Alaska, the Village of Kake has an on-again, off-again history of local law enforcement. A year after the tragic death of a teenage girl – a case that still hasn’t been solved – the lights in the Village Public Safety Office are now back on. At least, they will be again in November, when the VPSOs return from training.49 Voices: Cece Esparza of KodiakDaysha Eaton, KMXT – KodiakThis week we’re hearing from Cece Esparza in Kodiak. Esparza has been a social worker all over the state and is the longest volunteer host at KMXT in Kodiak. She’s originally from California.
The appointment of the U.S. Forest Service’s top official in Alaska was recently made permanent. Dave Schmid oversees 22 million acres in the Tongass and Chugach national forests.He replaced Beth Pendleton who spent eight years in the job.Schmid didn’t tip his hand to where he stands on proposals to roll back back the federal roadless rule in Tongass National Forest.The state of Alaska has repeatedly taken the agency to court over the rule, though public hearings held in recent weeks were largely packed with roadless rule supporters.He said six alternatives are currently under consideration by his agency.“One of those is the ‘no action’ alternative, and bookending the other is a full exemption (to the roadless rule),” Schmid said.Asked about the balancing act required for managing the Tongass and Chugach national forest lands, Schmid spoke of his office’s commitment to all facets of the region’s economy, including timber.“Recreation, tourism, fishing are a vital part of our economy, as is mining and timber development,” Schmid said in an interview. “And right now, the mill at Viking Lumber on Prince of Wales is kind of of the last of the moderate-sized mills. And while it’s not very big it’s a very important piece of those communities.”Schmid also reaffirmed that the agency seeks to eventually move away from old-growth timber sales. But he said it’ll be a gradual process; indeed, a new old-growth sale was recently announced.“Regeneration is not a problem in this part of the world,” Schmid said. “And if you walk through some of these legacy, larger clear-cuts, trying to manage those into the future is really important. And so trying to actively thin for wildlife and habitat is really important.”He also said the Forest Service is moving to improve the work environment for its staff at all levels.The Forest Service’s chief in Washington resigned earlier this year over allegations of serial sexual misconduct. A subsequent investigation found widespread complaints at the regional level.“We’ve spent time internally with our employees,” he said. “We’ve done a number of things, including chartered an employee advisory group, that I meet with regularly to hear from a cross-section of folks, and we have taken several steps both nationally and in the region for our work environment.”Schmid had served as the acting regional forester for Alaska since April before being made permanent in November. He was previously the deputy regional forester for the Northern Region. That region manages over 25 million acres of federal forestland in five states. Much of his agency career has been in Alaska. He worked 23 years in both the Chugach and Tongass national forests.
Kirsten Swann: What kind of overall impact does Alaska’s legal cannabis industry have on the state’s economy?Karinne Wiebold: “The legal marijuana industry in Alaska is kind of a bright spot in that we have been in a recession for the last three-plus years, and so overall the state’s been losing jobs, and cannabis is one of the few industries where we see job growth consistently throughout that period, and it’s because it’s a new and emerging industry. But it’s important to keep in mind that it’s a very, very small component of the overall economy. When we looked at the number of jobs in the marijuana industry compared to the number of jobs overall for Alaska, it’s less than 1 percent that we can tie to the marijuana industry. And when we talk about the state tax revenue, it’s a similarly very small component of overall tax revenue; less than 1 percent.”KS: How has the impact of this sector changed since the market began to develop a few years ago? Have you seen anything shift since then?KW: “I did a study back in May that was published in Alaska Economic Trends, and I was looking at the wages and employment that we could tie to marijuana. And we tied it through licensing and the unemployment insurance claim filings for the businesses that held marijuana licenses.In early 2016, the employment numbers were very low; so we’re talking less than 100. And as we moved through 2016 and into 2017, employment grew exponentially. So when we looked at workers, we were talking, in 2016, of — I’m sorry, not even less than 100, but less than 20. Very small numbers. When we got into 2017 early, we had about 100 in January. By the time we ended in December, there were over 500 jobs in marijuana, so we saw a steady, robust, incremental, month-to-month increase in the number of workers that we could tie to the industry.”KS: Is there anything that you can tell us about this industry going forward, or any forecasts that the Department of Labor has about this?KW: “It’s still a very new industry, so I would expect that it’s going to continue to grow. I checked this morning, and there were 271 active licenses. But when I took another look at what was in the queue, there’s almost 200 more permits that are in some process of review and approval. There’s a lot of reason to think that the industry’s going to continue to grow, we just don’t know right now how much and for how long it will continue to grow. We do need to keep in the back of our minds that it’s a very, very small component of the state’s economy, and that I don’t see changing. It’s always going to be a very small part of our economy, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t ultimately going to be a very important component.” For nearly three years, Alaska’s cannabis industry has generated steady job growth, tax revenues and new businesses around the state. In this edition of Ask an Economist, Alaska Department of Labor & Workforce Development economist Karinne Wiebold explains how the industry fits within Alaska’s overall economy.
Lawmakers across party lines penned a letter last month urging the Dunleavy administration to keep a close eye on Canadian mines in shared watersheds. There was no specific mention of mining in the governor’s letter. Lawmakers had raised concerns over the roughly dozen B.C. mines that are permitted, operating or lie abandoned in shared watersheds with Southeast Alaska. Gov. Mike Dunleavy has pledged to engage with British Columbia to protect Alaska’s natural resources and environment. That’s in response to lawmakers’ concern over potential threats from transboundary mining. Last year Gov. Walker had urged B.C. to require mine operators post reclamation bonds before work starts. That’s in line with Alaska regulations designed to ensure mining companies can afford to pay for clean up later. It’s also insurance toward catastrophes. Twenty-two legislators signed the letter urging the governor and lieutenant governor to pick up where the Walker administration left off. “They said in the letter that they were going to continue with the process, so I was heartened by that,” said Ketchikan independent Rep. Dan Ortiz. “But it was not quite as energetic as I would have liked to seen.” This month they got an answer. A two-page letter signed by the governor catalogued high-level contacts between state and provincial officials. He called it “important work” to remain engaged over transboundary rivers. Environmental and fishing groups on both sides of the border have been pushing B.C. reform its mining regulations for years. Jill Weitz is with Salmon Beyond Borders in Juneau. “There’s a need for financial assurances, essentially liability and accountability, to be placed on the B.C. mining industry for impacts to our shared water,” said Jill Weitz with Salmon Beyond Borders in Juneau. “As opposed to the communities of Southeast Alaska having to pay the burden of those impacts from their mining practices.” Gov. Dunleavy’s letter didn’t get into specifics. But it said a teleconference between his cabinet and B.C. ministers is planned for June 18.
Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekar Rao has directed officials to follow tri-policy method to achieve qualitative governance in the State. Adding that the strict implementation of the three policies – Telangana Rural Policy, Urban policy and Revenue policy– will bring qualitative governance in the State, the Chief Minister said the Telangana rural policy should be aimed at providing relief from various problems and issues being faced by the people. Also Read – TSBB, NGC promotes eco-friendly Ganeshas Advertise With Us The Revenue policy would ensure that the the bribe culture is curbed and the urban policy will aim at zero level corruption, he said, while holding a review on the progress made in formulating the new Municipal Act, provisions to be incorporated in it and the duties and responsibilities of the public representatives under the Act. “We are going to see a positive change in the village in three months. We fought elections in the rural Telangana and won. The people gave us a landslide majority in the Assembly polls and blessed us. We have taken up overall welfare,” he said and added that the government has decided to bring in qualitative change to pay as gratitude to the people. Also Read – CM KCR praises PRO for his books on Telangana Advertise With Us The Telangana new Municipal Act would be brought in to eradicate corruption. This time, people are expecting from the government best practices and best policies, KCR said, adding that people will get benefit from the best policies. The Municipal Act should be made to serve the people and to take care of their problems and issues. The Act should be stringent and help development of towns in a better way, he emphasized. “The act would be made with all the seriousness and commitment and should not be taken in a lighter vein,” the Chief Minister said instructing the officials concerned to organise an orientation and training programme for the Municipal Commissioners to create awareness about the new act.
London: Priti Patel, an ardent Brexiteer who was among the most vocal critics of Theresa May’s Brexit strategy, on Wednesday took charge as Britain’s first Indian-origin Home Secretary in the newly-unveiled Boris Johnson Cabinet. Priti Patel had been a prominent member of the “Back Boris” campaign for the Conservative Party leadership and was widely tipped for the plum post in his frontline team. Also Read – Uganda: Traveling girl from Congo dies of Ebola Advertise With Us “It is important that the Cabinet should represent modern Britain as well as a modern Conservative Party,” she said, just hours before her appointment was announced. A long-standing Eurosceptic, Priti Patel had steered the Vote Leave campaign in the lead up to the June 2016 referendum in favour of Britain’s exit from the European Union (EU). Also Read – At corruption retrial, Samsung scion may end up being jailed Advertise With Us The 47-year-old was first elected as a Conservative MP for Witham in Essex in 2010 and gained prominence in the then David Cameron led Tory government as his Indian Diaspora Champion. She went on to be appointed to junior ministerial posts, Treasury minister in 2014 and then Employment Minister after the 2015 General Election, before Theresa May promoted her to Secretary of State in the Department for International Development (DfID) in 2016 until she was forced to resign the post in 2017. Advertise With Us “With Boris Johnson leading the Conservative Party and as Prime Minister, the United Kingdom will have a Leader who believes in Britain, will implement a new vision for the future of the country and a roadmap to move forward and thrive as a self-governing nation that re-establishes our ties with our friends and allies around the world such as India,” she told PTI after Johnson won a landslide victory in the Tory leadership contest this week. “He is committed to securing new and improved trading relationship with our friends in India and ensuring that the values we share – the rule of law, democracy, and dynamic entrepreneurial spirit should be at the heart of one of our most important partners on the global stage,” said Patel, who has been a champion of India-UK ties ever since her time as Indian Diaspora Champion. The Gujarati-origin politician, who is a prominent guest at all major Indian diaspora events in the UK, is seen as an avid supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in the UK. As a member of the UK Parliament’s influential Foreign Affairs Committee (FAC), she was part of the team that recently released its damning report warning that the UK was falling behind in the race to engage with India at the end of a lengthy Global Britain and India parliamentary inquiry. “Our report calls for the government to look again at the relationship between the UK and India,” Patel said, in reference to the ‘Building Bridges: Reawakening UK-India ties” report released last month to mark the first-ever India Day in the UK Parliament. “This should be a special relationship based upon the living bridge between our two great countries and a partnership we should be nurturing. The report covers many of the missed opportunities where the UK should be proactively and bilaterally enhancing our ties. We are soon to have a new PM in the UK, which will provide a welcome change in how we engage India’s re-elected PM Modi,” she said at the time. She once again returns as the senior-most British Indian member of the UK Cabinet, having been forced to resign in November 2017 as International Development secretary amid a scandal over allegedly failing to disclose meetings with officials in Israel without informing the UK Foreign Office. She had maintained it was a private visit and Boris Johnson, then UK foreign secretary, spoke out at the time to back her. Describing Patel as a “good friend” with whom he worked closely together for Global Britain, he had said it was “quite right that she meets with people and organisations overseas”. But Priti Patel was effectively sacked by Theresa May, forcing her to the Parliament backbenches from where she continued to voice her criticism of May’s Brexit plan. She was among the rebel Tory MPs who consistently voted against the former Prime Minister’s Withdrawal Agreement with the EU as a “bad deal for Britain”, which ultimately sealed Theresa May’s term as Prime Minister.
MANGALURU: After a massive search operation that went on for almost 36 hours, CCD Owner VG Siddhartha’s body was finally recovered from the Netravati River near Mangaluru. The body was found early on Wednesday, as confirmed by the Mangaluru city police. Mangaluru Police Commissioner (city) Sandeep Patil said, “The body was found floating near Hoige Bazar at around 6.30am. The next process will go as per law and family members have been informed.” The coffee baron’s body is being shifted to Wenlock Hospital where a post-mortem is scheduled. His last rites will be performed in Chikkamagaluru.
Karnataka: Karnataka Chief Minister B S Yediurappa, on Tuesday, urged MPs from the state to put extra efforts in pursuing with the Centre all pending projects to make the state number one in the country. He was speaking at a meeting of state MPs here on the penultimate day of Monsoon Session of Parliament. The meeting was attended by MPs from the BJP and the Congress. Union ministers Nirmala Sitharaman, D V Sadananda Gowda, Pralhad Joshi and Suresh Angadi were also present in the meeting. Also Read – NRC in Assam to be released : list to finalize if a person is Indian or Foreigner Advertise With Us The MPs discussed issues related to Karnataka for nearly two hours, Yeddyurappa told reporters after the meeting. “We have decided to hold the MPs’ meeting every three months,” he said. Several pending issues related to railways, highways and irrigation, like proposed Mekedatu project were discussed in the meeting, the chief minister said. Also Read – Subramanian Swamy cross-examined in National Herald case Advertise With Us Earlier addressing the MPs, he said, “In order make Karnataka number one state in the country, MPs should put in extra efforts in seeking funds for the state from the central government.” “I expect your cooperation and support to get central help for the development of the state. In cooperative federalism, central and state cooperation is important. There is a need to raise issues related to state’s land, water and language in Parliament,” an official statement quoted the chief minister as saying. Advertise With Us Yeddyurappa said he had discussed with the prime minister and Union ministers the pending projects and issues related to minimum support price, coal block allocation, MNGREGA and highways. He informed the parliamentarians that the five districts in northern Karnataka are affected by floods and some parts of the state are facing drought. The state government is prepared to meet any untoward situation, he said. “The situation is under control and the support of MLAs and MPs is required to get the central relief fund for the state,” he added. Yeddyurappa is visiting the national capital for the first time after assuming charge as Karnataka chief minister. Earlier in the day, he met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and several Union ministers.
Uri: Pakistan Army on Tuesday violated ceasefire along the Line of Control (LoC) in Uri sector. Earlier on Monday, heavy ceasefire violation was reported from two locations in Poonch, Indian Army sources said. India has repeatedly urged Pakistan to “respect” the 2003 ceasefire arrangement between the two countries.
When US prosecutors this week charged two Israelis and an American fugitive with raking in hundreds of millions of dollars in one of the largest and most complex cases of cyber fraud ever exposed, they also provided an unusual look into the burgeoning industry of criminal hackers for hire.The trio, accused of orchestrating massive computer breaches at JPMorgan Chase & Co and other financial firms, as well as a series of other major offences, did little if any hacking themselves, indicate the federal indictments and a previous civil case brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission.Rather, they constructed a criminal conglomerate with activities ranging from pump-and-dump stock fraud to Internet casino break-ins and unlicensed Bitcoin trading. And just like many legitimate corporations, they outsourced much of their technology needs.”They clearly had to recruit co-conspirators and have that type of hacker-for-hire,” said Austin Berglas, former assistant special agent in charge of the FBI’s New York cyber division, who worked the JPMorgan case before he left the agency in May. “This is the first case where it’s that clear of a connection.”Berglas, who now heads cyber investigations for private firm K2 Intelligence, said additional major cases of freelance hacking will come to light, especially as more people become familiar with online tools, such as Tor, that seek to conceal a user’s identity and location.This week’s indictments accused a hacker referred to as “co-conspirator 1″ of installing malicious software on the servers of multiple victims at the direction of Gery Shalon, the alleged mastermind of the scheme now under arrest in Israel. A second indictment charges a man referred to as John Doe, believed to be in Russia, for an attack on online trading firm E*Trade.Officials have not said if the co-conspirator and John Doe was the same person, or if the FBI knows their true identities.Law enforcement and computer security officials say outsourced cyber-crime services â€” including rented time on networks of previously compromised personal computers and custom break-ins â€” are most readily found on underground Russian-language computer forums, where skilled attackers advertise their services.The forums are tight-knit communities where newbies must be vouched for by multiple known members and pay membership fees that cost thousands of dollars, said Daniel Cohen, who oversees an undercover team at EMC Corp’s RSA Security that monitors the forums.”You can find anything you want for an operation. Hackers, servers, software, code writing. They are all available,” said Cohen. Individuals hide their identities even from each other, making infiltration and arrests rare.In this case, the ringleaders are accused of hiring hackers to steal contact information and other data they then used to help convince ordinary investors to buy little-regulated stocks. Prosecutors have not disclosed how the hackers were compensated.Fees vary greatly in the cyber underground, depending on the complexity of the assignment and supply of talent available to do a particular job. Elite hackers who pull off the most technically challenging attacks might get a percentage of profits, while others might earn an hourly rate or get paid a few thousand dollars for winning access to a target’s network, said researchers.All three of those accused this week â€” Shalon, Joshua Samuel Aaron, who is at large, and Ziv Orenstein, who is also in jail in Israel â€” began promoting penny stocks before the hacks took place, according to US government claims.Orenstein’s lawyer declined to comment, and Shalon’s lawyer did not return messages seeking comment.
Game of Thrones season 8 episode 4Game of Thrones (@gameofthrones/Instagram)Game of Thrones season 8 episode 4 “The Last War” will feature Daenerys Targaryen finally coming on terms that Ser Jorah Mormont is no longer with her and she has to march King’s Landing with her remaining allies. Jon Snow will probably accompany her but as per a recent fan theory, she will be betrayed by Tyrion Lannister.Game of Thrones season 8 showed reunions of several major characters. On one hand, we saw Arya Stark reuniting with Jon Snow, and then we saw that emotional reunion between Sansa Stark and Theon Greyjoy. But there was a moment in episode 2 “A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms” where we saw Tyrion Lannister approaching Bran Stark. Their conversation by the fireside was not shown but it looked like the duo talked about several instances for example how Bran became Three-eyed-raven and how Jon is actually Aegon Targaryen.”Bran told Tyrion who Jon actually is and it will be the driving force behind him switching sides. A lot of us couldn’t see Jon releasing the information on his own to get the throne. What if Tyrion tells the world that Jon is the true heir because he doubts Daenerys’ intentions or honor! This would force Jon into a situation of conflict,” writes the fan on Reddit.Since Jon Snow is Aegon Targaryen, he is the true heir to the Iron Throne. Even Daenerys Targaryen holds no right to the throne till Jon is alive. At the same time, Tyrion knows very well what is going on between Jon and Daenerys and back in season 7, we learned that Tyrion was heartbroken after seeing Jon Snow knocking at Daenerys Targaryen’s door in the middle of the night. Game of Thrones season 8 episode 3 leakGame of Thrones (@gameofthrones/Instagram)Furthermore, few of Tyrion’s wrong decisions has cost a lot to Dany. Her ordering her own Hand to stay in Winterfell crypts during the battle of Winterfell could suggest that she has lost all faith in him and would try to push him further away in the remaining two episodes.If Daenerys will ask Tyrion to stop serving her as her Hand, he would simply reveal to everyone that she holds no right to the throne as it is Jon Snow who is the destined King of all the Seven Kingdoms. If Tyrion does that then it will come as a blow to Khaleesi who has lost everyone she has ever loved.
IKEA, the Swedish furniture company, 10 percent of whose global cotton suppliers are from India, plans to buy more of the crop from the country for its textile requirements, says a PTI report. In 2015, the company bought 35 percent of its global cotton requirement from India. The textile component accounted for about 70 percent of its overall India purchases valued at about â‚¬315 million. This, the company said, is poised to grow in the coming years.”Till now, IKEA retail was not present in India. Given the retail plan which we have till 2025, obviously sourcing of sustainable textiles from India would increase dramatically even for the local market,” IKEA Cotton Leader Pramod Singh told the agency. The company does not have a preference for genetically-modified cotton over the traditional one, he said. “We are technology neutral in this. It depends on the farmer’s choice,” Singh told PTI.IKEA has firmed up plans to set up a manufacturing base in India, in addition to setting up retail stores. “It is important for us to set up our production (unit) in India,” Peter Agnefjall, IKEA Group President and CEO, was quoted as saying in another PTI report.Earlier in March this year, the company bought land from Tata group company Rallis India in Mumbai on lease basis for Rs. 214 crore.Besides, IKEA purchased land in Karnataka to set up four retail stores entailing an investment of about Rs. 2,000 crore.IKEA plans to have 25 stores in India by 2025.
Nasscom has urged policymakers from the European Union (EU) and the UK to adopt measures to alleviate impact of Britain’s exit (Brexit) on the Indian IT services exporting sector, says a PTI report.”NASSCOM urges policy makers in Brussels and London to provide greater clarity and guidance on the next steps as soon as possible, so that our businesses have the certainty they need to continue to invest in UK and Europe,” NASSCOM President R Chandrashekhar was quoted as saying.Indian IT companies expressed concern over short-term risks to businesses as they get ready to pull through the consequences of Brexit from the EU.Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka said the company was “watching the situation closely” and that he was expecting a possible short-term impact on currency and business.The company’s chairman R Sheshasayee told the Economic Times that political events like Brexit are beyond the scope of business operations but added that the company is working on “hedging strategies” to temper macro level risks. “There is also an immediate impact due to the currency, the GBP has already fallen by 8-10%,” said Sangeeta Gupta, senior vice president of Nasscom.Wipro was quoted as saying that the immediate risks were labour mobility, currency fluctuation and a different financial system.”Wipro has been present in the UK for over two decades and today employs over 4,000 people there. We remain committed to the UK and are optimistic that the close ties between India and the UK will further strengthen in the long run and open up new opportunities for us,” the company said.There was no comment from TCS and HCL.A 2016 Grant Thornton India Tracker report provided a picture of Indian business scene in Britain. India’s investment in the UK increased 65% in 2015, making it the third largest FDI source for the country, says the report.Two IT companies figured in the report’s list of largest Indian employers. HCL Technologies was named the 7th largest employer with above 3,100 employees, while Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) took a close 8th place with more than 3,000 employees.The report also said the combined tax revenue payed by the Indian firms to the UK went up by Â£150 million in 2015 compared to the previous year.Echoing Nasscom’s earlier warnings, Ganesha Natarajan, former vice-chairman of Zensar Technologies, said: “Lots of UK companies have trans Europe operations, Britain’s exit will mean reorganization and impact on their business volumes as well, it would shrink their wallets and thereby spending on IT will be hit immediately.”
Close Ola electric vehiclestwitterIndia is planning to order ride-hailing giants like Ola and Uber to go electric by having a fleet of 40 percent electric vehicles by 2026. The plan includes a step-by-step increase in the conversion of the fleet.According to reports, the companies could have a fleet of 2.5 percent electric vehicle units (EVUs) by 2021, five percent by 2022 and gradually increase the electrification process to about 40 percent of the fleet by 2026.The emphasis on electrification is due to rising aspects of oil imports and growing pollution. There have been several meetings by the Niti Aayog with ministers on the EV policy. The clean-chit towards the support of electric vehicles was given on May 28 by Niti Aayog, ministries of road transport, power, renewable energy, steel, and heavy industries.Future electrification plans for private and public transport Tata Tiago and Ultra Electric busTata MotorsAccording to the plans explained to Reuters, 2026 would play a vital role in the electrification of public and private transports. The government plans on selling only electric cars and buses from April 2026, irrespective of the modes of usage. The same applies to scooters and motorcycles used for commercial purposes.Major companies like Tata Motors and Ashok Leyland have been informed about the plans of manufacturing electric buses for intra-city travel. Estimations on targets of electrification by the government are expected to be five percent of the fleet by 2023 to 30 percent of the fleet by 2026.Other initiatives taken worldwideChina has taken the biggest initiative of electrifying its auto market through its target of electric vehicle sales. It also lured taxi operators by offering incentives. It holds a record of selling 1.3 million electric vehicles in 2018, which is the highest in the world.There has also been a collaboration between BMW and Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) to build better electric engines and transmissions for a new generation of EVUs.Ola is trying to raise money from auto giants like Hyundai and Kia Motors and also partner with South Korean giants to build India-specific electric vehicles.India has been pushing forward the idea of having electric vehicles for public transport to meet its commitment to the Paris Agreement. Electric vehicles become new trend in AP to fight pollution IBTimes VideoRelated VideosMore videos Play VideoPauseMute0:01/0:58Loaded: 0%0:02Progress: 0%Stream TypeLIVE-0:57?Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedSubtitlessubtitles settings, opens subtitles settings dialogsubtitles off, selectedAudio Trackdefault, selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window. COPY LINKAD Loading …
Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley at the 21st GST Council meeting in Hyderabad on Sept 9, 2017. Also seen Union MoS Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla, Revenue Secretary Hasmukh Adhia and Chief Economic Adviser Arvind Subramanian.IANSWith less than 15 days before the Union Budget 2018 is presented, the Goods and Services Tax (GST) Council plans to cut rates on as many as 70 items in its next meeting, reported Business Standard.It is also learnt that the council can amend rules to simplify filing of GST returns and also plug some existing loopholes in the system.”Around 40-50 services will be taken up for a rate revision in the council meeting. These are services that were earlier exempt but were taxed under the GST regime. They are facing issues,” a government official told the business daily.After the implementation of GST, the Union Finance Ministry has no discretionary capacity to bring in changes in indirect taxes; GST council has been given the exclusive authority in terms of indirect taxes.The official further said the council is likely to prune the rates for agriculture implements — a move to boost agricultural sector, which is reeling under pressure.Earlier this week, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said the agriculture sector would be given the top priority by the government in Union Budget 2018.”Among the priority areas, the agriculture sector is on top. Ensuring the benefits reaches the agri-sector and growth is visible — this is among the priority areas for us,” Jaitley said.The meeting is scheduled for Thursday, January 18. This is the last council meeting before the finance minister presents the Union Budget on February 1.”Agriculture implements that are currently taxed up to 18 percent may come under the 12-percent or the 5-percent bracket,” the official said.He added that the council may bring in some change in tax rates of bio-diesel buses. Currently, bio-diesel buses attract the highest slab of GST, i.e. 28 percent, which may be revised downward.On the services front, job works may be allowed as part of the composition scheme, which will imply a flat rate of tax and easier compliance, reported BS.”Currently, only a few services such as housekeeping, carpentry, etc., are subject to 18 percent GST, if provided through an e-commerce platform, without the benefit of the threshold limit of Rs 20 lakh. We are expecting the rate to be reduced to 5 percent in such cases. Many job work services could also come under lower rate,” the business daily quoted Pratik Jain, partner, PwC India, as saying.
Anuj Puri is Chairman of ANAROCK Property Consultants. Views are personal. The above graph confirms that a large chunk (67 percent) of unsold inventory to be completed in 2018 will be added in National Capital Region (NCR), Mumbai Metropolitan Region (MMR) and Bangalore.· Over the past few years, NCR – largely an investor-driven market – has been a front-runner a mong the top 7 cities in terms of churning out new residential launches. However, developers’ focus on completions has been minimal. Now, the entire new launch activity seems to have shifted to a slow track due to the combined effect of demonetization, RERA and GST. Among NCR’s many developers, those that had been relying of deceit and misinformation are now having a rough time as the real estate business as a whole re-orients itself to the rebooted market conditions where focus on project execution has become a paramount consideration.· MMR’s real estate market is driven by a good mix of investors and end-users, and has also been flooded with new launches over the past few years. While the many structural changes and policy reforms in the recent past have taken the sheen off the high-end and luxury real estate segment, mid-range and affordable housing projects will remain in focus in MMR for the foreseeable future. With massive growth potential and huge latent demand in the suburbs and peripheral areas, housing requirements in these regions will make a comeback sooner than in other parts of the city.· Bangalore, largely an end-user driven market, has always adjusted as per market guiding circumstances and developers have accordingly restricted new launches to align with realistic absorption potential in such a market. This time around too, Bangalore’s developers are concentrating on completing existing projects rather than adding new ones to the market.In terms of affordability, buyers scouting for ready-to-move-in homes priced below Rs 80 lakh will have a bracing spread of options across the top 7 cities. Overall, buying ready-to-move-in properties in a buyer-favouring markets is always beneficial:· No execution delay· Attractive pricing· Buyers can relocate immediately to save on additional rentals· WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get)The major disruptive structural changes and policy reforms are now behind us. As 2018 begins on the right note of transparency and the right approach by developers, ready-to-move-in homes are indeed the flavour of the season. If Union Budget 2018-19 takes the right direction for the Great Indian Middle-Class, the sales uptick of these properties could be very significant indeed.Anuj Puri Real estate [Representational Image]A whopping 7 lakh residential units had remained unsold across top 7 cities of India at the end of December 2017. Add to this around 1.7 lakh unsold apartments that will be completed in 2018. Does that invoke grim concerns for the Indian real estate sector? Or, is there light at the end of the tunnel? Is the return of a bullish buyer market round the corner? More importantly, how will the upcoming Union Budget 2018 help the expected realty resurgence? The Indian real estate market is waiting with bated breath to see how it can benefit as the year 2018 unfolds. In fact, it has never been a better time for aspiring homebuyers, as there is a more than generous stock of ready-to-move housing options across most Indian cities.Ready properties are the pièce de résistance of 2018, not least of all because they are the most de-risked purchase proposition, do not attract GST and offer instant gratification. After all, owning a house is the culmination of almost every Indian’s lifetime efforts and aspirations.The sense of security, achievement and social stature linked to home ownership is what has for long been driving the demand for – and supply of – residential developments across India. All major roads, railway stations and airports are flanked by hoardings that advertise real estate projects.With a massive urbanization rate of more than 30 percent (estimated to reach 40 percent by 2030), the demand for homes in India is an assured long-term story in which chapters will continue to unfold. However, due to wavering economic growth, an uncertain job market and rising property prices, residential real estate demand has remained largely subdued over the last few years.Paradoxically, developers continued their protracted project launch spree – leading to a huge unsold inventory pile-up.Due to the structural changes and policy reforms such as demonetization, Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA) Bill and Goods and Services Tax (GST), the new launch activity slowed down in 2017. Nevertheless, December 2017 saw more than 7 lakh units remaining unsold across top 7 cities of India.Under the RERA regime, stringent guidelines and financial discipline have now been force-fed into the systems and processes governing the real estate business in India. Unsurprisingly, developers are now focusing on completing existing projects to avoid being entrapped in compliance hassles.This sharp focus on project completion is a blessing for homebuyers. The mammoth unsold inventory has already turned the Indian real estate arena into a strongly buyer-favouring market.Now, at the beginning of 2018, there is a huge opportunity to cherry-pick ready-to-move-in house as around 1.7 lakh unsold units are likely to get completed in this year. With the right kind of boosts to the Indian consumption story, we could see a massive return of buyers who are hoping to snap up ready-to-move homes but need that last decisive ‘last-mile’ incentive push.
Union Finance and Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman chairs the 36th GST Council meeting, in New Delhi on July 27, 2019. Also seen Union MoS Finance and Corporate Affairs Anurag Singh Thakur.IANSIndia Inc has sought a stimulus package of Rs 1 lakh crore to push investment and demand and take the economy and industry out of a slowdown. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Thursday met industry captains to seek consultations for boosting industrial growth in which India Inc placed a demand for a stimulus package of over Rs 1 lakh crore to beat the slowdown.Industry top officials said the government has assured them to take steps soon to boost the economic growth.In a meeting with top industry leaders, called by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman to discuss ways to revive the growth, Assocham President BK Goenka said amid the current slowdown in the global and domestic market, there is a need to have quick-fix solutions.”The economy requires a critical intervention by introducing a stimulus package. We have suggested for a package of over Rs one lakh crore,” he said.After the three-hour meeting, India Inc also said the government has assured them that it would take action soon to revive the industry and push economic growth, he said.JSW Group Chairman Sajjan Jindal said: “It was decided that the government is going to take action very soon to revive the industry and it is a matter of sentiments. We got positive feedback from the finance minister”. The industry is suffering from issues in sectors like steel, NBFC, and automobile.Piramal Enterprises Chairman Ajay Piramal said that the industry raised several matters such as reluctance of banks to lend to the industry. “It is not that there was a lack of liquidity in the banks, but lending is not taking place. There is stress on the economy as far as NBFC sector was concerned,” he told reporters after the meeting.He added that the NBFC issue is impacting sectors like auto, home loan, and MSME. aceI am told that there will be action soon. So, we will wait for that,” he said.Goenka said to boost exports and ensure stability, tax policies and schemes on refunds and incentives should be made steady and continuous, without intermittent changes. Given the fiscal constraints, the government can raise resources by monetising idle government land. In turn, such land can be used for affordable housing and new projects.”While India’s exports are declining, exports in June itself showing a drop of over 9 per cent year-on-year, the unabated US-China trade war throws many opportunities for India, which needs to be tapped.Higher rate of corporate taxes in India also make Indian businesses uncompetitive. Reviving private sector capex is also key to the economic growth. One of the growth drivers would be investment allowance and accelerated depreciation in green field project. There should be incorporation of accelerated depreciation system in first year or over 3 years. Tax rebates can be given for profits ploughed back as investment in new projects, he said.Though there has been rationalization in the category of goods falling under 28 per cent GST, there are still 33 items which remain in the highest slab. “It is recommended that the rate of other goods falling under such category such as cement, consumer durables, automobiles including parts thereof etc should be reduced to 18 per cent”.The Government is also said to have assured that punitive penal provisions concerning non-compliance with CSR spending norms under the companies law would not be pursued.Piramal said the industry demanded that oversight on CSR spending should not result in any imprisonment.Vice-President CII T V Narendran said the government sought views on ways to further stimulate the country’s economic growth. “Across the board, we discussed the key issues,” he said, adding slowdown in the auto industry would have an implication on the steel sector.Sandip Somany, President, FICCI, said transmission of cut in interest rate to consumers by banks is a big issue. “Banks must be encouraged to pass on the benefits of rate reduction to consumers and borrowers. We are hopeful of further rate cut. It is encouraging that the RBI has reduced rates by cumulative 110 basis points,” he said.Goenka strongly advocated setting up a ‘development bank’ which will support startup risk capital. He also sought the Finance Minister’s consideration on Accelerated Depreciation on investments as another measure to encourage investmentEmphasising the immediate need for revival of exports, Assocham president said there are sectors such as textile and garments, are suffering due to constant review and frequent changes being brought in tax refunds/incentives schemes.
Wikimedia [Representational Image]Two Boeing 737 passenger planes of SpiceJet suffered technical glitches forcing them to make emergency landing ahead of their scheduled routes on Saturday.The SpiceJet flight SG 8720 from Bengaluru to New Delhi made an emergency landing at Nagpur airport during the wee hours of Saturday. The aircraft was carrying 152 passengers.The airline officials said that the aircraft took off from Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru at 11.30 pm and had made an emergency landing at Nagpur because of fuel tank lid problem. The passengers were shifted to another plane after they were made to wait for eight hours.In a similar incident, a Chennai-bound SpiceJet flight SG-611 which departed from Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport in Mumbai at around 7.30 am also suffered technical snags and had to return to the airport. The pilots had to terminate the journey after being airborne for about 16 minutes.A SpiceJet spokesperson confirmed the return of its Chennai flight to Mumbai due to a “technical” issue. “The aircraft has already departed back for its destination around 10 am after the engineers rectified the glitch,” the spokesperson said, reports PTI.In a statement, the airlines said, “On 11th May 2019, SpiceJet flight SG-611 operating from Mumbai to Chennai returned back to Mumbai due to a technical issue. The issue has been rectified and boarding has started and the aircraft will depart shortly.”
-Around 6000 professionals have been working round the clock to complete construction work on the 1,320MW coal-fired Payra power plant at Dhankhali in Patuakhali’s Kalapara upazila.Being built by Bangladesh-China Power Company Ltd (BCPCL), the plant, if completed, would be country’s largest coal-fired power plant.The BCPCL is a 50:50 joint venture between Bangladesh’s North-West Power Generation Company Limited (NWPGCL) and China National Machinery Import and Export Corporation (CMC).During a visit to the project on Friday, around 1,500 Chinese and some 4,500 local workers were seen busy working on the completion of the project on time.Around 35 per cent of the construction work of the project, including piling for infrastructure building, constructing an iron frame for first unit’s boiler, project roads, and more is already complete, said BCPCL officials.They expected they would be able to bring in the required machineries for the plant in the first half of 2018.The estimated cost of the project is $1.6 billion, 80 per cent of which is expected to come as a loan from China’s Exim Bank. The rest would be invested by NWPGCL and CMC.The EPC contractor, which won the contract, is a consortium of First Northeast Electric Power Engineering Company (NEPC) of China and China National Energy Engineering and Construction Company Ltd (CECC).NWPGCL managing director AM Khurshedul Alam told Prothom Alo that there would be two 660MW units in the project.The first unit of the power plant is expected to supply electricity by April 2019 and the second unit will start generation in October, he added.The NWPGCL has been allotted land of 1000 acres near Payra port. Besides the 1,320MW plant, a 3,600MW LNG-based power plant, a 100MW solar plant, and a 50MW wind turbine plant will be set up here in the 100-acre land.State minister for power, energy and mineral resources Nasrul Hamid visited the Payra project on Friday.He said that the power plant project at Payra will produce a total of 900 megawatts of electricity and for this $12 billion would be invested.*The article, originally published in Prothom Alo print edition, has been rewritten in English by Imam Hossain.
Major Rohingya refugee camp populations in Bangladesh. AFPA plan to start repatriating Rohingya Muslims back to Myanmar is premature and the refugees are “terrified” about leaving Bangladesh where they sought refuge, dozens of aid agencies working in the region said Friday.More than 720,000 Rohingya Muslims fled Myanmar’s northern Rakhine state after a heavyhanded army crackdown in August last year that survivors say involved mass rape and extrajudicial killings.UN officials say the country’s military leaders should be investigated for genocide but Myanmar has rebuffed the calls, arguing it was only defending itself against Rohingya militants who attacked police posts.Both Bangladesh and Myanmar signed a repatriation agreement in November last year to allow Rohingya to return but many fear going back without guarantees of citizenship, freedom of movement and safety.However the governments confirmed in recent weeks that they were pushing ahead with the first large-scale repatriation set for mid-November, prompting an outcry from activists who say conditions on the ground in Rakhine are not adequate to take the refugees back.Rohingya Camp”They are terrified about what will happen to them if they are returned to Myanmar now, and distressed by the lack of information they have received,” the group of 42 aid agencies and civil society groups said in a statement that referred to the push as “dangerous.””They fled to Bangladesh to seek safety and they are very grateful to the Government of Bangladesh for giving them a safe haven.”Oxfam, World Vision and Save the Children were among the groups working in Myanmar and Bangladesh that signed the statement.They said refugees fear living in enclosed settlements like the one in central Rakhine state, where more than 120,000 Rohingya have been confined to camps for six years since intercommunal violence erupted in the region in 2012.Myint Khaing, the Maungdaw township administrator in northern Rakhine, told AFP that November 15 is the estimated repatriation start date and that the plan is to receive more than 2,200 people in total at a rate of 150 per day.But he seemed unsure if it would go ahead.”We can confirm only on the 15th whether the people from our given list are coming or not,” he said.Northern Rakhine has been largely sealed off since the crackdown except for tightly organised government trips for media and senior visiting diplomats.The UN has been granted access to the area to assess conditions on the ground but the approvals have been slow and the amount of territory accessible has been limited.Authorities in Bangladesh worry that Rohingya may once again risk travelling to other parts of Southeast Asia by boat, a route previously popular with those seeking economic opportunities outside the grim camps.This week Bangladesh’s coast guard rescued 33 Rohingyas and detained six alleged human traffickers from a fishing trawler headed for Malaysia in the Bay of Bengal.