PM Holness on Official Working Visit to Chile

first_img The prime minister is accompanied by Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade,  Her Excellency Alison Stone Roofe,  Ambassador of Jamaica to Chile as well as the Economic Growth Council and Ambassador Nigel Clarke. Prime Minister Andrew Holness is to hold a series of bilateral engagements with the Government of the Republic of Chile. Prime Minister Andrew Holness is to hold a series of bilateral engagements with the Government of the Republic of Chile.The prime minister left the island this afternoon (August 29) for a one day official working visit to the South American nation.Prime Minister Holness will meet with President of Chile, Her Excellency Michelle Bachelet, to enhance bilateral co-operation between the two countries.He will also explore other areas of co-operation including tourism and business development as he is slated to have dialogue with senior managers and national businessmen of the tourism and hotel industry at the National Chamber of Commerce, Services and Tourism of Chile.The prime minister is accompanied by Senator the Hon. Kamina Johnson Smith, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade,  Her Excellency Alison Stone Roofe,  Ambassador of Jamaica to Chile as well as the Economic Growth Council and Ambassador Nigel Clarke.The Prime Minister will return on Thursday, August 31.While he is off the island, the Hon. Dr. Horace Chang, Minister without portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation will be in charge of the government.center_img Story Highlightslast_img read more

Shanmugam is TN Chief Secretary Tripathy new DGP

first_imgChennai: Tamil Nadu government on Saturday said K. Shanmugam, Additional Chief Secretary in Finance Department has been transferred and posted as Chief Secretary. Shanmugam will replace incumbent Girija Vaidyanthan who retires on June 30. The government also said it has appointed J.K. Tripathy as the Director General of Police (DGP) and Head of Police Force in place of T.K. Rajendran, who retires on Sunday, as well, after completion of two years of his tenure.last_img

People across the globe get in the way of animal movements study

first_imgA global study shows animals are moving distances two to three times shorter in areas disturbed by humans than in the wilderness.The study, which is to be published Friday in the journal Science, brought together GPS data on 803 animals from 57 different mammal species on six continents and compared it with a human footprint index.It involved a total of 114 scientists — including some who study wildlife in Western Canada — who used an animal-tracking database to archive material.One of those scientists, Mark Hebblewhite, said the study brings information together to make the big-picture conclusion that animals are changing their day-to-day and migratory movements because of people.“We’ve got elephants. We’ve got bushy-tailed opossums, and animals in Barro Colorado Island in Panama,” said Hebblewhite, a professor of wildlife biology at the University of Montana. “Yet, across all of these different species, the overwhelming effect of human activity is to reduce their movements.”Another co-author, Adam Ford, said it’s concerning that animals are moving less in areas disturbed by humans.“What makes animals unique and special is that they move,” said Ford, an assistant professor in biology at the University of British Columbia Okanagan. “They need to move to get food. They need to move to get shelter and to find mates.”He pointed to research by Hebblewhite that shows wolves couldn’t get to parts of the Bow Valley in Alberta, which changed the entire ecosystem in the area.“Those barriers to movement were caused by people, even in an area such as Banff National Park,” said Ford.Hebblewhite and Evelyn Merrill, a professor of biological science at the University of Alberta, have been studying wolves and elk in and around the national park since 2001.They’ve had similar findings in research on elk in Alberta and B.C.“The road networks, highway fragmentation, dams, reservoirs, fences — all of these things — are making it more difficult to migrate in the first place,” said Hebblewhite.“The second thing we’re doing is supplementing them with food,” he said pointing to animals on golf courses.Hebblewhite said lower population numbers result when animals move less.“Studies have shown that if the Serengeti wildebeests didn’t migrate, there would be 50,000 to 100,000 of them instead of 1.5 million,” he said.Work on elk has had similar results.“Twenty years ago, 90 per cent of the population was migratory; 20 years ago, there were 2,000 elk,” said Hebblewhite. “Now, 30 to 40 per cent of the population is migratory and we have 500 elk.”Fewer elk means less food for hunters and predators such as wolves and grizzly bears.“The loss of elk are leading to declining wolf and grizzly bear populations in places like Banff.”Merrill, also a co-author on the study, said the latest results support earlier findings.“The fact we can do this at the global scale now is really the significance of this paper,” she said. “It reinforces that what we are finding at the small scale is happening more globally.”All of the researchers said the paper is important because it shows the importance of wildlife to be able to move freely.“Our efforts in terms of conservation are important,” said Merrill. “It’s important not only for the persistence of the species, but also for the role in the ecosystem that they play.”last_img read more

Former European Commissioner Praises Moroccos Military Justice Reform

first_imgMadrid – Benita Ferrero-Waldner, former European Commissioner for External Relations and European Neighborhood Policy, said that the adoption of a draft bill on military justice by the council of ministers is a sound decision to uphold human rights in Morocco.Waldner, who held the position of the European Commissioner from 2004 to 2009, told MAP that the draft law, adopted on Friday by the council of ministers under the chairmanship of King Mohammed VI to stop civilians from standing trials before military courts, is a very sound decision to uphold human rights in Morocco.The new military draft bill, prepared in accordance with the Royal guidelines, is meant to ensure the coherence of national legislation with provisions laid in the Constitution and international standards, in order to guarantee the requisites for a fair trial before all courts of the Kingdom.last_img read more

Closing Bell TSX closes up after brighter US retail data

TORONTO — The Toronto stock market closed modestly higher Tuesday as traders balanced economic data showing a better than expected read on U.S. retail sales against the standoff over raising the U.S. government’s debt ceiling.Here are the closing numbersTSX — 12,641.97 +38.88 +0.31%S&P 500 — 1,472.34 +1.66 +0.11%Dow — 13,534.89 +27.57 +0.20%Nasdaq — 3,110.78 -6.72 -0.22%The S&P/TSX composite index gained 38.89 points to 12,641.97, led by advances in gold stocks and defensive sectors, including telecoms and utilities. The TSX Venture Exchange gained 2.26 points to 1,231.79.Fitch Ratings warned Tuesday that the United States could lose its top credit rating for the second time if there’s a delay in raising the ceiling.Congress has a March 1 deadline to increase the country’s debt limit or face a potential default. There are fears that the debate will descend into the sort of squabbling and political brinkmanship that marked the last effort to raise the ceiling in the summer of 2011.“People are concerned about it,” said John Stephenson, portfolio manager at First Asset Funds Inc., but added that he doesn’t expect a repeat of the summer of 2011 when a large number of newly elected Tea Party Republicans held up the increase.“(The) thing that’s become apparent to the market is the Republicans don’t have the muscle (to do that) anymore.”The Canadian dollar closed down 0.03 of a cent at 101.62 cents US as worries about raising the debt ceiling strengthened the greenback. The U.S. currency is perceived to be a safe haven for money managers and often gains strength in times of turmoil.The Dow Jones industrials gained 27.57 points to 13,534.89 as the U.S. Commerce Department reported that December retail sales were up 0.5%, better than the 0.2% rise that economists had expected.The Nasdaq dropped 6.72 points to 3,110.78, and the S&P 500 index added 1.66 points to 1,472.34.Stephenson added the tone on markets early in 2013 is much more positive.“People are starting to differentiate between good performers, bad performers. It’s not like it’s, oh geez, Europe is blowing up, sell everything,” he said.“When we see days like today when the market is weak, we’re not seeing a lot of selling. We’re really seeing reluctance to sell. And on the days when it’s stronger we’re seeing reluctant buying but we’re not seeing anyone throwing the baby out with the bathwater.”The gold sector was the biggest advancer, up about 0.85% as February bullion gained $14.50 to US$1,683.90 an ounce. Barrick Gold Corp. (TSX:ABX) was ahead 36 cents at C$34.03 and Goldcorp Inc. (TSX:G) improved by 38 cents to $36.86.The utilities sector was up 0.76 % with Canadian Utilities (TSX:CU) 86 cents higher to $73.99.The telecom sector gained 0.56% as BCE Inc. (TSX:BCE) ran ahead 43 cents to $42.54.The base metals sector was up 0.24% as March copper on the New York Mercantile Exchange shed early losses and closed unchanged at US$3.64 a pound. Inmet Mining (TSX:IMN) climbed 68 cents to C$70.43.Anglo American Platinum, the world’s largest platinum producer, said it will close some South African mines and sell another, cutting 14,000 jobs. The announcement came only months after South Africa suffered massive labour unrest along with 46 deaths in the mining sector.Anglo American said a financial review concluded that four mine shafts needed to be closed and one mine sold because of unprofitable operations.On the TSX, Eastern Platinum (TSX:ELR) gained 3.5 cents or 15.22% to 26.5 cents.February crude closed 86 cents lower at US$93.28 a barrel. The energy sector rose 0.4% and Cenovus Energy (TSX:CVE) rose 33 cents to C$33.70.The information technology sector led losses, down 1.05% as Research In Motion Ltd. (TSX:RIM) gave back some of Monday’s 10% surge, down 43 cents to $14.27. Elsewhere in the group, Celestica Inc. (TSX:CLS) fell 13 cents to $8.17.Elsewhere in the tech sector, Facebook shares were down 2.74% to US$30.10 after CEO Mark Zuckerberg unveiled a new search feature. Called “graph search,” the new service lets users search their social connections for information about people, interests, photos and places. Until now, Facebook users were unable to search for friends who live in a certain town or like a particular movie.And Apple fell $15.83 or 3.15% to US$485.92. The stock hasn’t closed below $500 in almost a year. Apple slumped 3.6% Monday on concern that demand for its iPhone 5 is slowing.Corporate earnings from the fourth quarter also focused traders attention. The calendar Tuesday was relatively light but Wednesday will see the release of key earnings reports from the American banking sector, including JPMorgan Chase and Goldman Sachs group.In Canada, Corus Entertainment Inc. (TSX:CJR.B) will raise its dividend by more than 6%. The entertainment and media company announced the increase late Monday as it reported higher first-quarter earnings. Net income attributable to shareholders was $52.2 million or 62 cents per diluted share, up 3% from the year-earlier period.However, Corus said its consolidated revenues slipped to $226.1 million, down 5% from $236.9 million the previous year. Corus shares gained 22 cents to $24.45.Lululemon Athletica Inc. (TSX:LLL) shares fell $2.93 or 4.12% to $68.24 after it said Monday that it now expects diluted earnings per share of 74 cents for the current quarter. That compared with earlier guidance of between 71 and 73 cents per share. But it forecast revenue near the $475 million to $480 million previously forecast, below analyst expectations of $488.1 million. Here’s the news investors were watching today:Facebook unveils ‘Graph Search’Canadian home sales slump in double-digit drop year over year Apple slips under US$500, stock trading at ‘critical level’Germany’s economy shrinks most in 3 years as crisis hits eurozone powerhouse Gary Shilling’s 10 ways to invest in the ‘Grand Disconnect’ON DECK WEDNESDAYECONOMIC NEWSUNITED STATES8:30 a.m.Consumer price index: Economists expect no growth from the month before, 1.8% year over year 9:15 a.m.Industrial production: Economists expect 0.3% rise Capacity utilization: Economists expect 78.5% Manufacturing production: Economists expect 0.5% CORPORATE NEWSUNITED STATESGoldman Sachs Q4 earnings: Analysts expect US$3.65 a share JPMorgan Chase & Co Q4 earnings: Analysts expect US$1.20 U.S. Bancorp Q4 earnings: Analysts expect 74¢ BNY Mellon Q4 earnings: Analysts expect 54¢ Northern Trust Q4 earnings: Analysts expect 75¢ eBay Q4 earnings: Analysts expect 69¢ read more

BJP wants Tamils protected

BJP MP and General Secretary Kumar is also the Chairman of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on External Affairs. “Human rights have to be safeguarded and we want a united secular Sri Lanka where all the citizens have equal rights and are not discriminated against. We will take all steps to ensure this when we come back to power,” Kumar said. “The only way forward is how diplomacy is used and we should not shy away from strongly and effectively conveying our feelings and concerns to the Sri Lankan authorities,” he said.The foreign policy of BJP will be on the lines of national interest with a clear decisiveness, he said. India’s opposition BJP says Tamils in Sri Lanka should be given special protection and their safety must be assured.BJP leader Ananth Kumar who is on a visit to the US with BJP chief Rajnath Singh, said the Sri Lankan government should come out with a model where the Tamils will have a major say in the socio-political and economic development of the island-nation and contribute to the growth of the nation and are not discriminated against, the Press Trust of India reported. read more

Living conditions in Gaza more and more wretched over past decade UN

A decade after Hamas seized the Gaza Strip, the living conditions for two million people in the Palestinian enclave are deteriorating “further and faster” than the prediction made in 2012 that the enclave would become “unlivable” by 2020, a new United Nations report has found.“Gaza has continued on its trajectory of ‘de-development’, in many cases even faster than we had originally projected,” said Robert Piper, the UN Coordinator for Humanitarian Aid and Development Activities, in a press release on the new report, “Gaza – 10 years later.” In an intra-Palestinian conflict, Hamas took over Gaza in 2007. Israel has sought to isolate the group by restricting the movements of goods and people in and out of the strip. It was also administratively separated from the West Bank. The report, compiled by the UN country team in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, took stock of some key indicators identified in an earlier 2012 UN report that predicted Gaza would become “unlivable” by 2020 unless underlying trends were reversed. The new report found that real gross domestic product (GDP) per capita had decreased and the provision of health services continued to decline in Gaza, where average Palestinians are trapped in a “sad reality” and their daily lives are “getting more and more wretched” . The report called on Israel, the Palestinian Authority, Hamas and the international community to take action towards more sustainable development investments, reinvigoration of Gaza’s productive sectors, improvement of freedom of movement for both people and goods, as well as respect for human rights and international humanitarian law. “The alternative will be a Gaza that is more isolated and more desperate,” warned Mr. Piper. “The threat of a renewed, more devastating escalation will increase, and the prospects for intra-Palestinian reconciliation will dwindle – and with them, the prospects for peace between Israel and Palestine.”Thanks in large part to the scale of services provided by the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), Gaza has maintained high education standards, but average daily classroom time for students remains as low as four hours. While an earlier projection that the coastal aquifer would become unusable by 2016 has been revised to the end of 2017, Gaza’s only water source is predicted to be irreversibly-depleted by 2020, unless immediate remedial action is taken. Access to materials, which are necessary to allow the Gazan economy, infrastructure and basic services to recover from the 2014 conflict, remains highly restricted. Electricity supply – this year “the most visible deterioration in the living conditions in Gaza” – is as low as at 90 megawatts in recent days against the 450 megawatts needed. “Ongoing humanitarian assistance, especially through UNRWA’s services, are helping slow this descent, but the downward direction remains clear,” said Mr. Piper.Yesterday, the UN and non-governmental organizations conducted a field visit to Gaza with nine members of the diplomatic community from Australia, Canada, the European Union, Germany, Turkey, and the United Kingdom, to witness first-hand the cumulative impact of 10 years of closures and internal divide. read more

How church choirs could hold secret to reinventing Islam as English faith

first_imgThe peer, who was the first Muslim woman to sit in Cabinet, has also suggested building mosques without minarets to make them look more like “quintessentially English” places of worship as much as any village church.She is calling on architects and designers to come up with new styles for Islamic places of prayer to blend in closely to their surroundings.The event is being held at the Woking Peace Garden, where Muslim soldiers who died in the two world wars are buried.A local school choir has been invited to sing Muslim hymns in English, presented in the English choral style. peace-garden Mosques are being encouraged to draw inspiration from church choirs as part of a drive to develop a distinctively “English” brand of Islam led by the former Conservative Party chairman Baroness Warsi.Muslim devotional verse and music could be adapted to sound similar to hymns sung in parish churches, drawing from the centuries-old traditions of English choral music, it has been suggested.The idea is among a series of proposals being discussed at a “very English” tea party in Surrey hosted by Lady Warsi and organised by the think-tank British Future. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. Dr Avaes Mohammad of British Future added: “We have a British Islam, one that most Muslims here identify with, but with the union now looking more fragile and Englishness growing in importance, we may need an English Islam too.“An inclusive national identity can help bring us together as a society.“For that to happen, Englishness will need to feel open to ethnic and faith minorities.“Understanding our shared history can help.“Islam didn’t arrive in England with South Asian migrants after the war – its heritage here goes back much further.“It includes the Victorian converts who opened England’s first mosques and the 400,000 Muslims who fought for Britain in the First World War.“Knowing that, for Muslims and non-Muslims alike, can help us understand the multi-ethnic, multi-faith country that we live in today.” We have a British Islam, one that most Muslims here identify with, but with the union now looking more fragile and Englishness growing in importance, we may need an English Islam tooDr Avaes Mohammad Baroness Warsi said: “Recent polls have indicated that ethnic minority communities in England have tended to feel a much stronger association with Britishness than Englishness.  “Post-Brexit this question becomes more urgent.“An inclusive sense of national identity can bond us together. “How we use the physical spaces that we all share can help do that – whether it’s a new mosque that blends into its local surroundings or a peace garden in Woking.” Post-Brexit this question becomes more urgentBaroness Warsi Woking Peace GardenCredit:British Futurelast_img read more

Eating bogies is good for teeth and overall health scientists conclude

first_img“Nature pushes us to do different things because it is to our advantage to have certain behaviours, to consume different types of foods,” said said co-author Dr Scott Napper, professor of biochemistry at the University of Saskatchewan, Canada.”So maybe when you have an urge to pick your nose and eat it, you should just go with nature.”From an evolutionary perspective, we evolved under very dirty conditions and maybe this desire to keep our environment and our behaviours sterile isn’t actually working to our advantage.”Austrian lung specialist Professor Friedrich Bischinger, who also contributed to the study, said research show people who pick their noses are healthy, happier and probably better in tune with their bodies.”Eating the dry remains of what you pull out is a great way of strengthening the body’s immune system,” he said. It might be wise to look away now if you are eating or have a weak stomach, but scientists have discovered that ingesting bogies is good for teeth, and overall health.Scientists at a number of universities including Harvard and the University of Saskatchewan and say parents should not discourage their children from picking their noses because they contain ‘a rich reservoir of good bacteria.’Eating snot can also prevent bacteria from sticking to teeth, according to the article published in the journal of the American Society for Microbiology. The findings even suggest snot could defend against respiratory infections, stomach ulcers and even HIV.The researchers are even working on a synthetic mucus toothpaste and chewing gum to harness the dental benefits of bogies.  There are many beneficial bacteria in the nose, according to scientistsCredit:Tom Merton “Medically it makes great sense and is a perfectly natural thing to do. In terms of the immune system, the nose is a filter in which a great deal of bacteria are collected.”And when this mixture arrives in the intestines it works just like a medicine.”center_img Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. There are many beneficial bacteria in the nose, according to scientistslast_img read more

Fidel Castros eldest son commits suicide — Cuba state media

In this file photo taken on February 12, 2010 Fidel Castro Diaz-Balart, son of former Cuban President Fidel Castro, presents two books of his about technology and science at the XIX International Book Fair in Havana.HAVANA, Cuba (AFP) — The eldest son of the late Cuban president Fidel Castro committed suicide on Thursday, state media reported. He was 68 years old.“Fidel Castro Diaz-Balart, who had been treated by a group of doctors for several months due to deep depression, took his life this morning,” Cuba’s official newspaper Granma reported.“Fidelito” — as he was known on island nation — had initially been hospitalised for his condition and then continued with outpatient follow-ups.Born on September 1, 1949, he was the son of the revolutionary Castro’s first marriage to Mirta Diaz-Balart.A scientist who trained in the former Soviet Union, Fidel Jr helped usher in the development of a nuclear power programme in the Communist-ruled country.At the time of his death he had served as a scientific adviser to the Cuban government and was vice president of the country’s Academy of Sciences.Funeral arrangements will be made by the family, state media said. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedChanging Cuba pays homage to Fidel Castro ahead of 90th birthdayAugust 13, 2016In “latest news”Fidel Castro, Cuba’s iconic leader of revolution, dies at 90November 26, 2016In “latest news”Venezuela’s Maduro makes surprise visit to CubaAugust 16, 2017In “latest news” read more

Spotify allowing artists to sell merchandise on site

first_imgMUSIC ARTISTS ON SPOTIFY will have a new way of making money after the streaming service is now allowing them to sell merchandise on the site.The service, which is now available to Irish artists, will allow musicians to advertise their merchandise on the site. Artists can advertise up to three items at any time and will appear on their page.Artists are required to have a Topspin account, a site that specialises in promoting and selling goods for artists and can display up to three items at a time. Both Spotify and Topspin say it won’t take any fees or commissions from sales and can link to existing merchandise anywhere on the web.The service is available to a number of English speaking countries such as Ireland the US, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Iceland.Both selling merchandise and allowing concert listings for each artist for free, which it introduced back in December, is part of Spotify’s efforts to win artists over and encourage them to use the service.It came under criticism after it was accused of paying artists less than €0.05 per song play. The company responded with its own report explaining its business model, saying that a “niche indie album” could expect to earn roughly €2,400 during the month of July 2013.It also revealed that it receives 30 per cent of revenues while the remainder 70 per cent goes to either the music label or the artist, depending on who owns the music, although it says that it negotiates royalties with labels and publishers in each country.Read: Spotify introduces unlimited streaming for web users >Read: Spotify given a dressing down over Lily Allen “F*** You” recommendation >last_img read more

Pat Whelan fined €3k for failing to keep proper record of fraudulent

first_img Short URL Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article THE FORMER DIRECTOR of lending with Anglo Irish Bank, Pat Whelan, has been fined €3,000 for failing to keep a proper record of a fraudulent €8 million loan to his colleague William McAteer.McAteer, who was director of finance in the bank, will be sentenced next week for obtaining the loan from Anglo on 29 September 2008, as the bank was on the brink of collapse.Last month McAteer (66) of Greenrath, Tipperary Town, Tipperary, pleaded guilty to obtaining a loan of €8 million from Anglo on 29 September 2008 which he secured against his shares in the bank. He then used the money to pay off a personal loan he obtained from Bank of Ireland.The court was told today the loan was formulated by Anglo’s executive board of directors to prevent the Anglo shares being sold off which would have further damaged confidence in the bank.Whelan (54) of Coast Road, Malahide pleaded guilty to an offence of failing to maintain a register in respect of the granting on September 29, 2008 by the bank a loan to another director of the bank.Judge Martin Nolan noted that Whelan’s offence was a regulatory one which doesn’t carry a custodial sentence.He said the recording of loans to directors was “of great importance” but that he was satisfied Whelan was not aware of the precise regulations.The judge imposed a €3,000 fine. The maximum he could have imposed was €12,697.McAteer, who is currently serving a three and a half year sentence for other offences he committed while with Anglo, will be sentenced next Monday. He faces up to seven years in prison and a €63,486 fine.Comments are off as McAteer is yet to be sentenced.Read: Pat Whelan and Willie McAteer arrested over alleged €8m Anglo fraud> By Declan Brennan and Conor Gallagher 18,684 Views http://jrnl.ie/3189372 Monday 16 Jan 2017, 2:30 PM Share20 Tweet Email center_img Pat Whelan Image: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie Jan 16th 2017, 2:30 PM Image: Laura Hutton/RollingNews.ie No Comments Pat Whelan Pat Whelan fined €3k for failing to keep proper record of fraudulent €8m loan His colleague William McAteer will be sentenced next week.last_img read more

Im going to raise the tricolour high Galway man to make history

first_img‘I’m going to raise the tricolour high’: Galway man to make history after 7 weeks rowing the Atlantic alone Gavan Hennigan is approaching Antigua with a world record in his sights. The42 is on Instagram! Tap the button below on your phone to follow us! https://the42.ie/3216819 Gavan Hennigan. Image: www.gavanhennigan.com Wednesday 1 Feb 2017, 1:37 PM By Alan Waldron Source: Gavan Hennigan/Twitter Follow us: the42.ie *UPDATE* Time to dust off the Tricolour, i’ll be in Antigua late tonight.Absolutely flying it here in 20k wind & strong current #rowgavrow— Gavan Hennigan 🇮🇪 (@soulogav) February 1, 2017 Short URL Image: www.gavanhennigan.comcenter_img GALWAY MAN GAVAN Hennigan is on track to create history by completing a solo row across the Atlantic Ocean in record time tomorrow.Hennigan began the Talisker Atlantic Challenge in the Canary Islands 49 days ago and is now fewer than 100km from the finish line in Antigua.Italy’s Matteo Perruchini currently holds the world record for the feat, having completed the crossing in 52 days just under 12 months ago.Hennigan, 35, is leading the solo category and third in the overall race, which means he is currently ahead of boats which contain teams of up to four people.“I’m focused on controlling the controllables,” Hennigan said today from the Atlantic.“I know about the chasing teams but I can’t do anything about what they’re doing. I can only focus on rowing my boat and pushing myself to the limit to get to Antigua as fast as I possibly can.“My goal before this race was to be the first solo man home and to set a new Irish record. I’m going to achieve that. I’m fighting hard out here with my body and my mind.“I’m focused on the next stroke and the one after that.“I’ve got plenty of water in front of me and I’ll be pulling hard each and every minute I’ve got left out here.“I’m going to get to Antigua with style and raise that flare and tricolour high when I get there.”Hennigan, who is raising money for Jigsaw Galway and Cancer Care West, is expected to complete the race early tomorrow, on his 50th day of racing.He is an experienced endurance athlete who has adventured to all seven continents, his exploits encompassing mountaineering and ultramarathon running, distances beyond the standard 42.2km. Gavan Hennigan. Feb 1st 2017, 1:37 PM Previous achievements of Hennigan’s include posting the third fastest time in the world’s coldest adventure race — the Yukon Arctic Ultra — which involves running 300 miles in five days in -30C. 14 Comments 19,638 Views Share Tweet Email1 Women’s relay team the latest Russian athletes to be stripped of Olympic medalsOCI reverse decision to ban media from presidential elections Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this articlelast_img read more

Cudicini hails unique Cesc Fabregas

first_imgCarlo Cudicini has described Cesc Fabregas as ‘one of a kind’ after his appearance in Chelsea’s 2-0 win against Nottingham Forest at Stamford Bridge on Saturday.Fabregas has been linked with a move to French club Monaco in the January transfer window and his appearance in Chelsea’s FA Cup victory appeared to be his last for the club.The midfielder came off to a standing ovation by the crowd and his team-mates in the second half and came back on the pitch after the game in tears as Chelsea fans sang his name.“I personally don’t know. If it was his last game it was very good that he played in front of his fans and that he was able to have a nice reception. But I don’t know, so I can’t comment,” Cudicini, standing in on press duties for Maurizio Sarri, told Sky Sports.Premier LeaguePremier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“What can I say about Cesc? Five hundred games, he is a player who is unique, he has an unbelievable awareness and vision of where his team-mates are on the pitch.“I think he is one of the few that has the ability to give balls behind the defensive line that are so precise.“He is one of a kind player. He has been fantastic for the teams he played for before us and the contribution he has given this club and to this team has been amazing. Cesc is a top, top player.”last_img read more

California Assembly approves phone bill fee to improve 911 system

first_img June 18, 2019 Posted: June 18, 2019 California Assembly approves phone bill fee to improve 911 system SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California lawmakers are negotiating a pair of proposed tax increases as the deadline approaches for Democratic Gov. Gavin Newsom to sign a $214.8 billion operating budget.Lawmakers approved the budget bill last week, but lawmakers still must pass more than a dozen “trailer bills” that detail how the money must be spent.Monday, the state Senate approved a plan to raise taxes on some business income and give that money to people who earn less than $30,000 a year in their annual tax refunds. The Assembly, meanwhile, approved a fee of up to 80 cents per month on phone bills — including cell phones — to pay for an upgrade to California’s aging 911 system following the most devastating wildfire season in state history.The businesses taxes are a tough vote in the Assembly , where Democrats in power have concerns about voting to align the state’s tax code with a portion of the 2017 federal tax law signed by Republican President Donald Trump. The 911 fee is a tough vote in the Senate, where lawmakers are wary of voting again on a cell phone fee after a similar proposal fell one vote shy of passing last year.Lawmakers in both chambers breezed through a series of trailer bills on Monday that did things like temporarily suspend taxes on diapers and tampons and extend the state’s paid family leave program by two weeks. Lawmakers passed each one with little debate and with bipartisan agreement on several points.But the Legislature is poised for a pair of critical votes on Thursday on the 911 fee and business taxes, with leaders in both chambers trying to pressure the other one to vote.“It is really kind of part of our strategy to make sure one house takes a vote that may feel difficult by the other house, and vice versa,” said Sen. Holly Mitchell, a Los Angeles Democrat and chairwoman of the Senate Budget Committee. “I think those are appropriate dots to connect.”The business tax changes are part of a plan to selectively adopt some of the federal tax changes Trump signed into law in 2017. Some items would lower taxes and others would increase them. Overall, the state would get an additional $1.6 billion in revenue during the fiscal year that begins July 1.Newsom wants to use most of that money to triple the state’s earned income tax credit program, which boosts the size of annual tax refunds for low-income people. The plan would make about 1 million more people eligible for the credit. Plus, it would give $1,000 to people who make less than $30,000 a year and have at least one child under 6.But the plan would still not include immigrants who pay taxes but do not have Social Security numbers. Newsom would not include that in the budget because he said it was too expensive, but pledged to work toward it in future years.In an effort to win votes, lawmakers have stopped referring to the bill as “conforming” to the federal tax code, but instead call it “loophole closure.” Assemblyman Adam Gray, a moderate Democrat from Merced, supports the bill. He said he has never seen “so much consternation” about a tax bill, noting lawmakers often conform to federal tax changes without controversy.The 911 fee is an effort to upgrade the state’s system so it can handle text messages, photos and videos. But the fund that pays for the system is based on a fee for each phone call. The fund has been steadily declining as more people opt to send text messages.Assemblyman Jay Obernolte, R-Big Bear Lake, argued that the state should use some of its surplus to pay for the changes rather than raise fees on consumers. But Assemblywoman Christy Smith, D-Santa Clarita, argued that the state’s 911 system is essential and requires funding beyond a short-term surplus.“Yes, we have a surplus. But we don’t always have a surplus in California,” she said. “We will always have emergencies.” Categories: California News, Local San Diego News FacebookTwitter AP, AP last_img read more

BNP Paribas to discuss benefits alignment at Employee Benefits Live

first_imgIan Mackenzie (pictured), head of pension and benefits at BNP Paribas, will discuss aligning a benefit and compensation strategy to an organisation’s goals at Employee Benefits Live 2015 on 21 September.The session, entitled ‘Developing a benefit and compensation strategy to meet your organisation’s long-term goals’, will examine how to design a benefits package to drive employee performance, and using employee benefits to unify a group of businesses, which is something BNP Paribas has first-hand experience with.In November 2014, BNP Paribas implemented a new single benefits scheme to align previous programmes in place at seven different core businesses, each with varied workforce profiles and cultures.Mackenzie said: “We wanted to use benefits to create one vision with all our organisations, and show our staff the advantages of being part of a larger organisation.”Mackenzie’s session will also examine the reasons why BNP Paribas wanted to align its benefits packages.Mackenzie said: “Internal mobility between the seven businesses was a huge aim of ours. As the benefits will all be the same now, something that was once a barrier to mobility isn’t anymore.“Mobility keeps talent within an organisation and creates opportunities for staff to develop.”The organisation clocked up five wins at the Employee Benefits Awards 2015 in recognition of its efforts: best healthcare and wellbeing benefits – large employer; best flexible benefits plan – large employer; best alignment of benefits to business strategy; best benefits communications – large employer; and the Grand Prix.At Employee Benefits Live, BNP Paribas’ Mackenzie will speak alongside L’Oreal UK’s compensation and benefits director, Ben Marks.Employee Benefits Live 2015 will take place at Olympia National, London, on 21-22 September.View the full conference programme and register to attend.last_img read more

Tampa officer pays entire vet bill for homeless mans dog

first_imgTAMPA, FLA. (WSVN) – A Florida police officer came across a homeless man with his dog, and instead of giving the man money, the officer took both of them to a veterinarian and paid the entire bill.According to a Facebook post by Vets4Pets Charitable Clinic, Tampa Police officer Bart Wester was driving in Downtown Tampa when he pulled up next to the homeless man, who was panhandling with his dog, Karma.“Instead of arresting the homeless man, Officer Wester put he and Karma in his police car and drove them to Vets4Pets,” the Vets4Pets Facebook post said.Wester paid for the entire vet bill.“We were just informed that Officer Wester has been with the Tampa Police Department for over 10 years and does special things like this all the time!” wrote Vets4Pets.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

How to preorder Oculus Quest and Rift S right now

first_imgThe Oculus Quest and Rift S VR headsets are now available for preorder. Oculus At its F8 developer conference this morning, Facebook said starting today you can preorder its Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S. The two VR headsets and controllers will ship May 21, the company said.The all-in-one Quest will start at $399 and is a solid step up from the company’s entry-level Oculus Go VR headset — which starts at $199. The focus of the Quest is on VR games, Facebook has said. The new Quest headset will not require a computer but will still be powerful enough to run many of the Rift’s popular games, and developers have already announced games for the standalone headset.Read more: Oculus Quest reviewThe other VR headset Facebook announced today,  Oculus Rift S, will require a PC and is the replacement for the Oculus Rift. The Rift S also starts at $399, can use the Quest and Go controllers, and will have the ability to play Quest games.That $399 price for the Oculus Quest and Rift S converts to £305 and AU$565, roughly. Here’s how you preorder the Oculus Quest and Oculus Rift S.CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. See it Review • Oculus Quest is amazing, even months later CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Wearable Tech We took Oculus Quest on vacation 5:18 43 Photos Oculus Quest Oculus Quest is fully mobile VR Share your voice • $398 Now playing: Watch this: reading • How to preorder Oculus Quest and Rift S right now Mentioned Above Oculus Quest News • Oculus Quest may have its first killer app with Beat Saber 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. 0 Apr 30 • Facebook’s new Oculus Rift S vs. Oculus Quest: Which VR headset is for you? Post a comment See All Game Developers Conference Game Developers Conference Mar 21 • Intel intros 9th-gen Core H mobile CPUs, Graphics Command Center Mar 21 • Google Stadia puts Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC gaming on notice To preorder the Oculus QuestYou can preorder the Quest from Amazon or straight from the Oculus website. The 64-GB model will cost $399, and the 128-GB version will go for $499. Both will ship by May 21. Setup will require an iPhone or Android phone and the Oculus app.See Quest at AmazonTo preorder the Oculus Rift SAfter putting on and then taking down the page to the Oculus Rift S this morning, you can now preorder the VR headset on the Microsoft Store for $399 at Microsoft’s online store, or at Amazon. The Rift S will come with a pair of Touch controllers, a headset cable and adapter. It will also ship by May 21.See Rift S at Amazon Tags Oculus Virtual Reality Facebooklast_img read more

IndiGo launches New Year Sale offers flight tickets starting Rs 899

first_imgIndiGoMany domestic carriers offer discounts around the New Year holiday season to attract passengers during a period marked by high demand. The latest on that list is IndiGo Airlines.IndiGo has announced a New Year Sale on air tickets, with fares starting as low as Rs 899 on selected routes. Bookings for the New Year Sale opened on January 8, 2018. The offer is available for three days and is applicable on travel between February 1 and April 15.Under the new offer, IndiGo tickets on flights between Delhi and Chandigarh are available for a fare of Rs 899. Some other starting fares offered are Rs 999 on flights from Delhi to Jaipur; Rs 1,099 from Delhi to Amritsar; Rs 1,299 from Delhi to Dehradun, and Rs 1,399 from Delhi to Nagpur, according to the airline’s website — goindigo.in.Additional 10 percent cashback of up to Rs 600 and IndiGo Special Service Vouchers of up to Rs 600 on payments made with HDFC Bank Credit Cards will also be available, subject to conditions, said the IndiGo website.The offer will be available for bookings made via its website and its mobile app, besides other booking websites. Group bookings will not be eligible for the offer.The offer is available on a limited number of seats on selected sectors and flights. If these seats are filled, regular fares will apply.Fares in the New Year Sale offer are non-refundable upon cancellation by the customer. ”On cancellation, only statutory taxes will be refunded,” said the airline’s website.Rs 600 is the maximum amount of cashback or IndiGo vouchers that can be earned on a round-trip ticket, IndiGo added. This offer is subject to a maximum of Rs 300 upon booking of a one-way flight, and Rs 600 on a return flight.last_img read more