Province to Invest in Health Care

first_imgThe departments of Health and Health Promotion and Protection have confirmed that budgets for hospital-based services will increase in 2009-10. The information has been shared with districts to allow for business planning for the new fiscal year. All nine health authorities and the IWK Health Centre will receive a four per cent increase to operational or non-wage budgets, as well as full funding for wage and benefit increases. The Department of Health has provided the district health authorities and the IWK with consistent increases in operational funding since 2003-04. In addition to the four per cent increase, another $10 million will be provided for medical equipment. “Despite challenging economic conditions, investing in our health system is the right thing to do for Nova Scotians,” said Health Minister Karen Casey. “We are pleased that we were able to continue to provide new money in this difficult financial climate. We know other provinces have not been so lucky. “And we are pleased to be providing a specific amount for replacing or adding new equipment because maintaining our facilities is extremely important.” The nine districts receive operational funding for public health and addictions services from the Department of Health Promotion and Protection. The nine districts and the IWK receive all other operational funding from the Department of Health. “We worked hard this year to protect as much funding as possible for public health and addictions services in the district health authorities,” said Health Promotion and Protection Minister Pat Dunn. “We are continuing to invest in quality programs and services to help more Nova Scotians be healthy and safe.” Nova Scotia is one of the only provinces to provide increases to the health system while balancing its provincial budget. District health authorities and the IWK Health Centre received $1.398 billion in 2008-09 for health-care budgets, including wages and benefits.last_img read more

"Province to Invest in Health Care"

Risks rewards accompany speedier cleanup of closed nukes

PLYMOUTH, Mass. — Companies specializing in nuclear demolition and radioactive waste storage are buying up aging U.S. reactors and promising to decommission them in dramatically less time than their utility owners had planned — eight years instead of 60 in some cases.Viewed by experts as an emerging trend in the nuclear power industry, the sales of these retired or soon-to-be-retired reactors present a paradox for residents, state officials and nuclear watchdogs.Once a reactor is shut down, the radioactive mess left behind must be cleaned up, spent nuclear fuel packed for long-term storage and the plant itself dismantled. Few argue that decommissioning a facility within a matter of years is less preferable than the decades-long approach called “safe storage,” in which shuttered plants are left dormant while radioactive elements slowly decay.Yet the speedier approach raises questions about whether the timetables are consistent with environmentally safe cleanups, and whether the buyers have the experience and money to manage multiple projects.“When it was 60 years, we were up in arms that it was 60 years,” said Janet Tauro, chair of New Jersey Clean Water Action, referring to initial plans for decommissioning Oyster Creek in Forked River. The nation’s oldest commercial reactor closed last year , shortly after owner Exelon Generation announced the sale to Holtec International.“And then we hear it’s going to be expedited to eight years,” Tauro continued. “It’s great to get it over with but are there corners that are going be cut?”Holtec, a privately held, global corporation that manufactures giant containers for storing spent radioactive fuel after it’s removed from reactor cores, also has deals in place to buy several plants owned by Entergy Corp., including: Pilgrim in historic Plymouth, Massachusetts, closing May 31; Palisades in Covert, Michigan, slated for closure in 2022 ; and two reactors expected to close within two years at Indian Point in Buchanan, New York, according to public statements and documents filed with the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.“Our commitment to the nuclear industry includes taking ownership of shutdown nuclear plants so that we can safely and efficiently decommission the plants so that the land can be returned to productive use,” Holtec spokeswoman Joy Russell said in an email.The company did not make officials available for interview, but strongly defended its 30-year nuclear industry track record.The proposed sales await NRC approval, with decisions expected in the coming weeks and months, agency spokesman Neil Sheehan said. In March, the NRC asked Holtec for additional guarantees that its decommissioning subsidiary has sufficient resources to handle multiple cleanups simultaneously.In a response letter, Holtec outlined a plan for corporate oversight of the decommissioning projects and said “dedicated leadership” at each site would include some current employees who will remain on during the transition.In legal briefs filed with the NRC, Massachusetts officials including Attorney General Maura Healey have expressed skepticism about Holtec’s plan to “decommission Pilgrim on an expedited schedule never before achieved,” despite having never owned a nuclear plant nor managed a decommissioning start to finish.Holtec executives tout “cutting edge technologies” that speed the removal of superhot spent fuel from the reactor pool. Fuel that can no longer sustain a nuclear reaction remains radioactive and still generates substantial heat.Under federal protocols, spent fuel rods are typically placed in pools filled with water and reinforced with concrete to prevent leakage. Used fuel generally stays in the pool for at least five years, and 10 years is the industry norm, according to the NRC, allowing for enough cooling so it can be safely moved into so-called “dry storage” casks.Holtec has designed a cask it says can accept spent fuel after only two years, allowing for a complete transfer from the “wet storage” pool within three years.While there are clear risks attached to transferring spent fuel too quickly, experts also note there remains a slight risk of a catastrophic leak or fire for as long as the fuel remains in the pools.Seven U.S. reactors have closed since 2013 and at least a dozen more could follow over the next decade, many pushed into retirement by factors such as competition from cheaper energy sources like natural gas.“Due to the lowering gas prices, it’s a very difficult market to run a nuclear power station,” said Patrick O’Brien, spokesman for Pilgrim, which got a 20-year extension to its original 40-year license but ultimately is shutting down after 47 years.In January, privately held NorthStar Group Services completed the purchase of Vermont Yankee from New Orleans-based Entergy after federal and state regulators approved the sale of the reactor, closed since 2014. It marked the first permanent transfer of an operating license to a nuclear cleanup specialist for accelerated decommissioning. NorthStar hopes to announce another transaction soon.“It saves a lot of money and that’s what allows these projects to happen now instead of 50 years from now,” said Scott State, New York City-based NorthStar’s president.There’s more at stake than just demolishing the plants. Once removed from the plant itself, the spent fuel has nowhere to go and must remain indefinitely at or near the site, under 24-hour guard, because picking a permanent national nuclear waste storage site has proven too politically radioactive.NorthStar and Holtec have proposed interim waste storage facilities in Texas and New Mexico, respectively, which could allow for the centralized storage of spent fuel but which also face legal and regulatory hurdles.As Holtec moves to become a key player in decommissioning and nuclear waste storage, it has been fending off scrutiny for its role in a mishap during decommissioning of the San Onofre nuclear plant in San Diego County last August. No radiation was released, but the NRC called the incident a “near miss” and fined plant owner Southern California Edison $116,000, according to agency documents.An inspection report determined some Holtec procedures had been inadequate or not properly followed, and the company’s own evaluation cited oversight shortcomings.Massachusetts officials have stopped short of asking the NRC to block Pilgrim’s sale, but they have cited the incident at the California plant while questioning whether the money in Pilgrim’s decommissioning trust fund is enough to cover unexpected delays or cost overruns.By Holtec’s own accounting, the estimated $1.13 billion decommissioning would conclude with $3.6 million to spare in the trust fund, a cushion described as “meagre” by state officials. Potential shortfalls could pose “significant health, safety, environmental, financial and economic risks,” the state argued in a request for public hearings.Holtec said its equipment had never been involved in a major accident and stood by its cost estimates, noting it will save by foregoing decades of maintaining and monitoring plants during safe storage.“There’s a natural tendency to say, ‘Oh, they’re doing it fast, they’re going to make mistakes, it’s not going to be safe,’” said Rod McCullum, senior director of decommissioning and used fuel at the Nuclear Energy Institute, a Washington-based advocacy group for nuclear power. “You’re actually getting safer by getting faster.”Situated along scenic, environmentally sensitive Cape Cod Bay, Pilgrim has a history of unscheduled shutdowns and was only recently removed from an NRC list of the nation’s least safe reactors .The citizen’s group Pilgrim Watch, which has long advocated for the fast-approaching day when the plant closes for good, remains wary of what lies ahead in decommissioning.“The story isn’t over. There’s a sequel,” said Mary Lampert, the organization’s longtime director. “And sometimes the sequel, like in the movies, is worse than the main show.”Bob Salsberg, The Associated Press read more

"Risks rewards accompany speedier cleanup of closed nukes"

Recording star Christina Aguilera lends her voice to UN efforts against hunger

Grammy Award-winning singer Christina Aguilera has joined the growing chorus of celebrities committed to using their voice to spotlight global hunger as ambassadors for the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP).“Christina Aguilera’s passion and dedication to hungry children runs deep, and it will make her a wonderful champion in the fight against hunger,” said WFP Executive Director Josette Sheeran. Ms. Aguilera has demonstrated her strong commitment to hunger issues in numerous ways, including travelling to Guatemala last year to see WFP’s maternal and child health programmes, the agency noted. In January, the five-time Grammy winner performed in MTV’s ‘Hope for Haiti’ telethon that raised more than $60 million for disaster relief in the earthquake-hit Caribbean country, including for WFP relief work. Later this month she plans to travel with WFP to Haiti to see first-hand how food assistance projects are helping to rebuild devastated communities. “I want to check on the situation there and help to deliver food. I want to visit orphanages and schools there and try to do my part in helping,” said the singer, who has described her work with WFP as life-changing. Ms. Aguilera revealed her appointment as an Ambassador Against Hunger for WFP during an appearance on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on Friday. “A child dies every 6 seconds of hunger which is a huge statistic for me,” she said during the talk show. “After having my own child I just had to be a part of it and do something about it and help change that situation.” The growing roster of WFP’s celebrity partners includes musicians, film stars and athletes such as footballer Ronaldinho, actress Penélope Cruz, basketball star Dikembe Mutombo and actor Sir Sean Connery. 8 May 2010Grammy Award-winning singer Christina Aguilera has joined the growing chorus of celebrities committed to using their voice to spotlight global hunger as ambassadors for the United Nations World Food Programme (WFP). read more

"Recording star Christina Aguilera lends her voice to UN efforts against hunger"

Brit helped 6 Sri Lankans reach UK with fake Indian passports

Before she was caught in March for allegedly aiding four Sri Lankan nationals to illegally travel to the UK with forged Indian passports, a British woman also helped six other Sri Lankans make the journey, the Indian Express reported.The Sahar police have identified British national Julie Ann Warner and Sri Lankan agent Rayappen Thevakumaran (52), who was arrested at Chennai airport on May 4, as the main conspirators in the racket to send Sri Lankans to UK using forged Indian passports. Another Sri Lankan travel agent Mahamuni Logorajan and an Indian agent Rajan, both currently absconding, are also allegedly involved in the racket. Chennai immigration officers handed over Thevakumaran to the Sahar police on May 5, the latter have claimed that between January and February this year, six Sri Lankan nationals travelled to London from Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport. On March 10, immigration officers at the Mumbai airport had first intercepted four Sri Lankans as they attempted to board the London flight under assumed names and later caught Warner and her three compatriots who were flying to Ahmedabad, before returning to London. All eight accused are currently in judicial custody.According to the police, the UK government had placed restrictions on Sri Lankans entering the country after an influx of refugees in the 1990s during the Sri Lankan civil war, leading some Sri Lankans to approach the travel agents who acquired forged Indian passports for them.According to the police, in January and February, Warner had roped in British nationals Phillip Gary Hodder, Paul Lovett, Richard James, Terrence John Mackay and Dutch national Andreasa Marie Stoffels and made forged Indian passports in their names. Like in March, the Sri Lankan nationals were first flown to Mumbai and booked into rooms in a hotel near the international airport. The police said the travel agents simultaneously flew down British nationals to Mumbai and made forged Indian passports bearing their names.On the day of the flight, the British nationals would collect boarding passes and hand them over to the Sri Lankan nationals, who would use the forged passports to board British Airways flights. The two would meet in the departure lounge after clearing security to board different flights on which they were booked simultaneously. According to the Sahar police, the accused facilitated the illegal travel of Sri Lankan nationals Velummylum Subaharan, Vadivelu Sivarpalingam and Arunthavale Sivathas to London on February 11, 2017. In documents submitted by the police to the Andheri court last week while seeking Thevakumaran’s custody, the police said that on February 26, 2017, three others — Thangavadivel Partheepan, Krishnamoorthy Sanjon and Annalingam Sivakumar — also made the trip to London. An officer at Sahar police said that during each trip, Rajan would meet the Sri Lankans in Mumbai, book them into hotels and take them to the airport. “Logorajan would meet the Sri Lankans at the airport, give them them their forged passports and instructions to board the London flight and introduce them to the British nationals — part of the identity switch,” said the officer. “We are also investigating how many other Sri Lankans were sent illegally to the UK in this manner,” said Baburao Mukhedkar, senior inspector, Sahar police station.The police are yet to find agents Rajan and Logorajan. An officer who is part of the investigation said that Logorajan is suspected to have returned to Sri Lanka on March 10.Advocate Prabhakar Tripathi, who is representing Warner and three other jailed British nationals, said that he will soon move the sessions court seeking bail for his clients, since the police has arrested Thevakumaran, who, Tripathi claims, is the prime conspirator in the case. (Colombo Gazette) read more

"Brit helped 6 Sri Lankans reach UK with fake Indian passports"

UN strong civil society needed more than ever at this crucial period

“At this time, we must reaffirm our commitment to multilateral cooperation, broad-based action, and tolerance and understanding,” Ms. Fréchette said, opening the UN Department of Public Information’s (DPI) 56th annual conference for non-governmental organizations (NGOs) at the world body’s headquarters in New York. “The world needs the United Nations more than ever…[and it] also needs active and committed NGOs and a strong civil society,” she added.This was the vision to which world leaders committed themselves three years ago in the Millennium Declaration, she said. Since then, however, the world had been shocked by violence and beset by division.That was why the theme of this year’s conference – “Human Security and Dignity”- was timely, the Deputy Secretary-General said. “It reminds us of our collective responsibility to all the world’s people…and reminds us of the commitment of world leaders to strengthen the United Nations, and to advance the cause of peace, development of the environment and respect for human rights,” she added.The three-day conference – the premier NGO event at the UN – will highlight these issues and give civil society organizations a forum to express their ideas about human rights, people’s empowerment and global well-being. About 2,000 representatives associated with DPI and the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) from more than 100 countries around the world are expected to attend. The Conference will for the first time also be webcast live through an interactive site (http://www.ngodpiexecom.org)Also speaking at the Conference opening, General Assembly President Jan Kavan of the Czech Republic said human security could only be achieved by building on people’s strengths to create strong civil society and institutions. NGOs had participated in the work of the UN almost since its inception, and their participation has expanded dramatically during the series of international conferences throughout the 1990s.He said the UN had a vast array of functions to implement its mandate. The Organization was needed as the only legitimate forum to resolve transnational problems that could not be solved by individual States. Recognizing the support of civil society in the prevention of armed conflict, he had convened an open meeting last week to explore how best to link the work of civil society with the work of governments and the United Nations.Speaking at a press briefing, former Brazilian President Fernando Henrique Cardoso, Special Adviser to Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Chair of the High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on UN-Civil Society Relations, told reporters it was his view that “We have to insist on the construction of a peaceful world and this cannot be done without international public opinion and the very active presence of NGOs.”Mr. Cardoso, who was joined by fellow panel member Mary Racelis, said that following the Iraq crisis, there was a need for a kind of revitalization of a peace movement across the world and new views on how to guarantee that peace. It was also clear that it was not enough for any one government to “take care of peace,” as there was ample room for worldwide civil society and international public opinion to have a say.“The fact is that nowadays there is an international public opinion may be the only countervailing force towards the power of some governments. So national public opinion is more sensitive to international public opinion and this is how we can move towards a better world,” he said.Ms. Racelis, who is a research scientist at the Institute of Philippines Culture at Ateneo de Manila University, added that “All of us believe that in the end, if the citizenry – especially those who are more poor, disadvantaged, marginalized – becomes articulate and understands rights, knows issues and can speak to their representatives as peers, that is what really changes government policy significantly, and we have seen it.” Listen to UN Radio report read more

"UN strong civil society needed more than ever at this crucial period"

General Assembly discusses designation of Holocaust Remembrance Day

Introduced by Israel, and co-sponsored by some 90 Member States, the draft resolution rejects any denial of the period in time as an historical event, urges States to develop educational programmes that will instruct future generations about the horrors of genocide, and condemns all manifestations of religious intolerance, incitement, harassment or violence against persons or communities based on ethnic origin or belief.Jan Eliasson, President of the GA said that the memory of the Holocaust must be “a unifying historic warning around which we must rally; not only to recall the grievous crimes committed in human history but also to reaffirm our unfaltering reserve to prevent the recurrence of such crimes.”The Israel Representative to the UN, Dan Gillerman said that the Holocaust “brought us face to face with the full extent of man’s capacity for inhumanity to his fellow man,” and that it served as a “critical impetus” for the development of human rights, the drafting of landmark international conventions on Genocide, and the very establishment of the UN.In addition to establishing “International Day of Commemoration to honour the victims of the Holocaust,” the draft resolution also calls for actively preserving the sites of the Holocaust, including Nazi death camps, concentration camps, forced labour camps, and prisons, and to establish a UN programme of outreach and mobilization on Holocaust remembrance and education.January 27, 1945 is currently officially recognized as a day of remembrance for Holocaust victims in several countries, including the United Kingdom, Italy and Germany, because it marks the day when an advancing Soviet army liberated the largest Nazi death camp, Auschwitz-Birkenau, in Poland.”As the generation of Holocaust survivors and liberators dwindles, the torch of remembrance, of bearing witness, and of education must continue forward,” Mr. Gillerman said. read more

"General Assembly discusses designation of Holocaust Remembrance Day"

Annan to visit Jordan tomorrow following terrorist suicide attacks

Mr. Annan, who is at present on a Middle East tour, was scheduled to visit the Jordanian capital today, but the trip was postponed following last night’s attacks because he felt that it would be an added burden to the Jordanian authorities.When he called the King from Saudi Arabia today to express his condolences, “it was made clear that the Secretary-General’s visit would be appreciated by the King and the people of Jordan,” spokesperson Marie Okabe told the press in New York.“So the Secretary-General will be travelling to Jordan tomorrow to express his support and pay his respects and to meet with the UN staff there,” she added. The Security Council today called on all states to help bring the perpetrators behind the attacks to justice and reiterated its determination to combat all forms of terrorism in accordance with its responsibilities under the UN Charter.“The Security Council reaffirms that terrorism in all its forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security, and that any acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable, regardless of their motivation, wherever, whenever and by whomsoever committed,” the 15-member body said in a Presidential Statement. “The Security Council condemns in the strongest terms the terrorist bombings that took place in Amman, Jordan on 9 November 2005, which fell victim to a yet another heinous act of terrorism,” it added in a statement read out at the session by Ambassador Andrey Denisov of Russia, which holds the rotating Council presidency for November.The Council underlined “the need to bring the perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these intolerable acts to justice,” and urged all States to cooperate with and provide support and assistance, as appropriate, to the Government of Jordan.“The Security Council further reaffirms the need to combat by all means, in accordance with the Charter of the United Nations, threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts,” the statement added. The President of the General Assembly, Jan Eliasson of Sweden, opened today’s proceedings with by paying tribute to “all those affected by the abhorrent terrorist attacks.“Theses attacks are a further stark reminder of the importance and urgency of the work we are doing to adopt a Comprehensive Convention on Terrorism,” he added. In a statement Wednesday night, Mr. Annan also reiterated his longstanding call for the adoption of a comprehensive international treaty to fight the scourge of terrorism. read more

"Annan to visit Jordan tomorrow following terrorist suicide attacks"

Stanford Volleyball Looks Unstoppable But Challengers Are Lurking

Percentage returning Stanford brings back a lot of talent this seasonPercentage of 2018 contributions produced by players returning in 2019 for top NCAA women’s volleyball programs 2018 RankTeamKillsAssistsDigsBlocksAces Stanford women’s volleyball faced a tough challenge just a week into the season, making a trip across the country last Wednesday to take on the then-No. 7 Florida Gators.But the match was hardly a struggle. The Cardinal — led by the trio of seniors Kathryn Plummer (21 kills), Jenna Gray (37 assists) and Morgan Hentz (15 digs) — dispatched Florida in straight sets, 25-22, 25-17, 25-19. Four days later, the team added a win over No. 3 Texas to improve to 4-0. As a result, Stanford was the unanimous top team in Monday’s coaches poll.The Cardinal finished 2018 with a 34-1 record, avenging its early-season loss to BYU in the national semifinals before beating Nebraska in the final. After rolling through the NCAA last season, the Cardinal return more of last year’s squad than almost any other top-ranked team.1The top 11 teams in last year’s end-of-season poll all started the 2019 season back in the top 11. But the road won’t be easy for the talented favorites, who will have to beat stalwarts from the Midwest and upstarts from the South.Stanford was the only school with three 2018 First-Team All-Americans, all of whom were juniors. The team’s biggest loss was middle blocker Tami Alade, a Second-Team All-American and the only senior who consistently played last season. Gray, the two-time defending Pac-12 Setter of the Year, was the only non-senior setter to earn First-Team All-American honors last year. Hentz, Mayor of Hentz-Ville, is the two-time defending Pac-12 Libero of the Year and last year’s Final Four Co-MVP.And then there’s Plummer, the two-time defending National Player of the Year, a dominant force on the outside who’s already racked up more awards than can comfortably fit on her bio page. Plummer, Hentz and Gray might be the NCAA’s top players at their respective positions. The trio has won a pair of titles together and may be in line for a third. 11Florida84.545.083.277.280.0 The toughest competition, as is often the case in volleyball, comes in the Big Ten, which claimed five of the top eight spots in the preseason coaches poll.The Wisconsin Badgers may present the biggest challenger to Stanford as the only top-11 team returning a higher percentage of contributions. The preseason coaches poll put Wisconsin fifth, behind Nebraska and Minnesota, but Big Ten coaches named UW the conference favorite. The Badgers looked the part early but suffered a pair of close losses to ranked teams over the weekend and will need to bounce back.Wisconsin is led by a junior class featuring Sydney Hilley, Dana Rettke and a redshirted Molly Haggerty. The 6-foot-8 Rettke, a nearly unstoppable blocker, spent the summer competing with the U.S. national team. Haggerty was the 2016 Big Ten Freshman of the Year, but a back injury cost her all of 2017, and she struggled to return to form last year. Hilley, a Second-Team All-American, ranked fourth in the country in assists per set last year and is one of just three setters named to an All-American team who returns this season.And Illinois retained All-American outside hitter Jacqueline Quade from its Final Four team but lost setter Jordyn Poulter to graduation (she now plays on the national team). The Illini will likely replace her with Mica Allison — a transfer from Auburn, a former top recruit and one of the nation’s best underclassman setters. Illinois has also struggled early, losing a pair of matches this weekend, though Allison has barely played because of an injury.And perennial contenders Nebraska and Penn State enter the season with strong young teams. Nebraska, national champions in 2015 and 2017 and last year’s runners-up, can never be counted out, especially if setter Nicklin Hames makes a substantial leap her sophomore year. The Huskers are off to a 4-0 start with no seniors on the roster. Penn State has won at least 22 matches in each of the 41 seasons played under head coach Russ Rose. The Nittany Lions, with 15 underclassmen on their roster, have jumped out to a 5-0 record but face their first big test when Stanford comes to town on Friday.Minnesota made the biggest jump among last year’s top-10 teams, coming in third in the preseason rankings despite being upset by Oregon in last year’s regional semifinals. That loss marked the Gophers’ fourth-straight tournament upset; they were the No. 2 seed three of the last four years but haven’t reached the championship match since 2004. Replacing All-American setter Samantha Seliger-Swenson is the biggest challenge for the Gophers this year, who have struggled early this season.Outside the Big Ten, a pair of Big 12 Teams are off to hot starts. No. 3 Texas swept Minnesota and took Stanford to five sets. And Baylor, a program that hasn’t reached even the Sweet 16 in 10 years, shot up to No. 5 after winning at Wisconsin and at Marquette to reach 5-0.The under-the-radar contender could be Kentucky. The SEC favorite is one of the best teams in terms of returning contributors. Junior setter Madison Lilley will try to make a case for player of the year, and there’s plenty of All-American talent around the roster.2Lilley and Leah Edmond were Second-Team All-Americans, while Gabby Curry was an honorable mention But the Wildcats struggled out of the gates, suffering an early-season straight-sets upset at the hands of then-unranked Utah.Stanford’s early-season challenges are far from over: The Cardinal face three top Big Ten teams in the next week, culminating next Wednesday with a rematch of the national championship game against Nebraska. And there will be challenges throughout the year from other top teams, especially come December. But if last year is any indication, the Cardinal will be ready. The programs that finished last season ranked in the top 11 last year were all ranked in the top 11 in the 2019 preseason poll.Sources: School websites, ACVA rankings 1Stanford85.1%99.9%98.4%68.7%98.8% 3Illinois76.613.579.949.870.4 9Oregon45.77.242.747.740.2 8Wisconsin86.199.798.982.099.3 5Texas54.398.790.832.486.2 4BYU55.210.741.764.943.3 7Minnesota92.111.768.485.447.9 2Nebraska69.489.057.083.954.0 10Kentucky82.098.387.471.272.8 6Penn State57.615.666.566.669.0 read more

"Stanford Volleyball Looks Unstoppable But Challengers Are Lurking"

Age Concern chief executive stole £700000 from charity by paying cheques into

John Briers, centre, is pictured leaving Newcastle Crown Court on April 30 Briers made no comment during police interview and later claimed payments were diverted to his account simply so he could pay suppliers in cash.The trial continues. 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. John Briers, centre, is pictured leaving Newcastle Crown Court on April 30Credit:Will Walker/NNP John Briers (pictured covering his face) is pictured leaving Newcastle Crown Court on April 30 “He made most of those payments simply by writing out cheques to himself.”He then covered his tracks by pretending that those fraudulent payments were either payments to companies who had supplied goods and services to Age Concern or bonus payments that were approved by the charity’s board of trustees or special payments, also agreed by the board, or a sub-committee of the board.”The defendant created false documents to explain those fraudulent payments.”In the end, he was caught out because one of the documents he created contained obvious mistakes and the finance manager with the charity noticed.”In total, he stole over £700,000 from the charity through these means.”The court heard the money was taken from the two limbs of the organisation, one being the charity, which he was chief executive of, and the other was the trading company, which he was secretary of. John Briers (pictured covering his face) is pictured leaving Newcastle Crown Court on April 30Credit:Will Walker/NNP Prosecutors claim Briers pocketed £433,236 through fraudulent cheques which he claimed were for suppliers, that he paid himself £105,560 in bonuses, including a special, additional monthly salary of £5,756, on one occasion, and that he used £169,703 of the charity’s cash to top-up his pension.Mr Dunne said Briers used fake invoices and even fraudulent minutes of board meetings in a bid to cover his tracks. Prosecutor Anthony Dunne told the court: “The defendant is charged with three offences of fraud by abuse of position.”The position he held was that he was chief executive of a charity, Age Concern South Tyneside.”The case against him is he dishonestly used that position to fraudulently pay to himself large amounts of Age Concern’s money. An Age Concern chief executive has been accused of stealing more than £700,000 from the charity by paying cheques into his own account and awarding himself bonuses. John Briers pocketed huge amounts of the organisation’s money in an abuse of his trusted position during a fraud spanning eight years, a court heard.The 57-year-old, of Woodstock Road, Gateshead, who was chief executive officer at Age Concern South Tyneside at the time, denies all charges – three allegations of fraud between 2007 and 2015.Newcastle Crown Court heard he is accused of paying 60 cheques into his own account, awarding himself 12 unauthorised bonuses and 19 additional pension top-ups.Jurors heard Briers was suspended from his post when a financial manager noticed a supporting document for one of the payments appeared to be fraudulent and an investigation was launched.Templates of blank invoices for firms the organisation had dealt with were allegedly found when Briers’ office was searched, the court heard. read more

"Age Concern chief executive stole £700000 from charity by paying cheques into"

Numérisation 100 des écoles en haut débit pour 2012

first_imgNumérisation : 100% des écoles en haut débit pour 2012France – Luc Chatel, le ministre de l’Éducation nationale, vient de présenter un rapport sur la numérisation des établissements scolaires. L’objectif est de généraliser le haut débit dans 100% des établissements scolaires en 2012.Les écoles françaises ont un “retard” à rattraper au niveau de la numérisation et du haut débit. Le Premier ministre, François Fillon, a ainsi commandé un rapport afin de franchir avec succès cette nouvelle étape dans les établissements scolaires. Pour cela, l’État a mis les moyens puisque 1 milliard d’euros devraient être injectés dans ce projet.À lire aussi”Trash Tag Challenge” : le défi utile qui incite Twitter et Instagram à nettoyer la planète Au programme, 70 mesures ont été proposées où figurent 12 priorités comme la formation des cadres et enseignants, le développement des équipements pour l’apprentissage des langues et le prolongement du parcours scolaire par le numérique afin de favoriser l’égalité des chances. Le rapport ambitionne de généraliser le haut débit dans les écoles pour 2012 et de former 6.000 personnes qui seront les “ambassadeurs du numérique” d’ici la fin de l’année. A partir de 2011, tout manuel scolaire sortira aussi en version numérique. “Je souhaite que d’ici avril, je puisse présenter un plan très ambitieux, pluriannuel, pour que le numérique soit le quotidien de nos élèves”, a assuré Luc Chatel. 50.000 emplois pourraient être créés durant ces trois prochaines années.Le 16 février 2010 à 10:55 • Emmanuel Perrinlast_img read more

"Numérisation 100 des écoles en haut débit pour 2012"

Is Annabel Scholey the 13th Doctors New Companion

first_img HBO Max Scores Exclusive ‘Doctor Who’ Streaming RightsJo Tro Do Plo Plo No: ‘Doctor Who’ Welcomes Back Familiar Monster Stay on target Before she takes over the TARDIS, the 13th Doctor stopped by Hogwarts! Jodie Whittaker & Annabel Scholey with the #CursedChild London cast. pic.twitter.com/ieuflsNQXk— Cursed Child Play (@HPPlayLDN) October 10, 2017The image of Cursed Child‘s London cast features an excited-looking Whittaker hugging actor Annabel Scholey—who seems to have nothing to do with the play.The pair go back at least five years, having starred together in the National Theatre’s 2012 production of Antigone, alongside Ninth Doctor Christopher Eccleston. So, they either attended the show together, or came separately and were both invited onstage for a photoshoot and reunion.Thirty-three-year-old Scholey, best known for her role as Lauren Drake in UK TV series Being Human, has been working steadily since 2005, appearing in British soaps Holby City and EastEnders. Last year, she played Contessina de Medici in a mini-series about the Italian dynasty, starring Dustin Hoffman and Game of Thrones‘ Richard Madden.The BBC remains tight-lipped about the Thirteenth Doctor’s latest associate; the production company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.In August, rumors tipped quiz show host, comedian, actor, and (IMO), unlikely TARDIS traveler Bradley Walsh as the front-runner.There is no word when we’ll get the heads up. But I suppose there’s plenty of time to ponder, since the next season of Doctor Who isn’t scheduled to begin for at least a year.If the Beeb is still stuck for a sidekick, I’ve got a few suggestions of my own (in alphabetical order, because it’s too difficult to rank them by perfectness):View as: One Page Slides1. Amanda Abbington(via BBC)The “Sherlock” star would be a perfect fit for the TARDIS.2. Gemma Arterton(via BBC)She’s played an anarchic schoolgirl, a Bond Girl, and a witch hunter. Here’s to hoping she can add space-and-time traveller to the list.3. Zawe Ashton(via BBC)Unrecognizable by most US viewers, “Fresh Meat” star Zawedde “Zawe” Ashton could bring some much-needed color to a whitewashed program.4. Hayley Atwell(via BBC)I want to be Hayley Atwell when I grow up: The London-born beauty works well in teams and can definitely kick ass.5. Charlotte Beaumont(via ITV)Whittaker already has chemistry with her on-screen daughter (“Broadchurch”). And there is precedence for family ties on the TARDIS.6. Sacha Dhawan(via BBC)Earlier this year, Dhawan expressed great interest in the role of the Thirteenth Doctor, telling Radio Times “I SO would love to.”7. Anna Friel(via BBC)I still miss “Pushing Daisies.” Another dose of the adorable Anna Friel could go a long way to healing that wound.8. Miranda Hart(via BBC)The TARDIS could use another funny lady. (Plus, it’s bigger on the inside, so the six-foot-tall actor would never have to stoop.)9. Sally Hawkins(via BBC)The hip aunt you always wanted.10. Ruth Negga(via AMC)She wowed in “Loving” and is currently occupied with her starring role in AMC’s “Preacher.” But she could be the Doctor’s first (on-screen) Irish companion.11. Sue Perkins(via BBC)The former “Great British Bake Off” host is another hilarious option.12. Sheridan Smith(via BBC)I’m thinking a musical “Doctor Who” episode with this theater whiz (who is currently killing it in the West End’s “Funny Girl”).13. Ben Whishaw(via BBC)I will never not want Ben Whishaw to play all the part ever.center_img The Doctor has a penchant for plays: Peter Capaldi last year visited his then-unannounced companion Pearl Mackie during her run in London’s The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.The two reportedly pretended not to know each other when Capaldi came backstage, hoping to maintain an air of mystery before the BBC’s official cast announcement.So it’s no surprise that when the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child production this week tweeted a photo of Doctor-in-waiting Jodie Whittaker with the Hogwarts student body, suspicions turned to a possible new companion.last_img read more

"Is Annabel Scholey the 13th Doctors New Companion"

Final Reminder Recruiters Redeem Your Points by Dec 31

first_imgNeed a gift for that hard to shop for person? ASA encourages recruiters to visit  the Recruiter Reward Center online and cash in on your hard work. ASA wants to make sure you have every opportunity to cash in on your success. Recruiter Rewards Points earned in fiscal year 2013 (Oct. 1, 2012 to Sept. 30, 2013) for recruiting ASA/state members. Points MUST be redeemed by Dec. 31, 2013 or they will be forfeited.Recruiter points can be redeemed for a selection of more than 50 gift cards, including dining, shopping, travel, special bundles and pre-paid cards from the Recruiter Reward Center. Some of the stores in the Recruiter Reward Center include: Build a Bear Workshop, Barnes and Noble, J C Penny, Kohls, HomeGoods and Macy’s.Click here to find out how many points you have and select stores to redeem points. Any points earned for recruiting between Oct. 1, 2013 and Dec. 31, 2013 may be combined with fiscal year 2013 points for redemption.For questions contact ASA’s Farris Haley at fhaley@soy.org or 314-754-1284.last_img read more

"Final Reminder Recruiters Redeem Your Points by Dec 31"

7s Nerey serves up halfhour Bite with Belkys

first_imgMIAMI (WSVN) – Fans of 7News anchor Belkys Nerey’s foodie segment “Bite with Belkys” got an extra helping of delicious, easy-to-make dishes on Saturday.Nerey served up a super-sized half-hour installment with the help of the Miami Culinary Institute. Together they created sausage and bell pepper sliders, stuffed jalapeños and zucchini galettes with a shrimp relish.Nerey also sent a special shout out on Twitter, thanking her foodie fans in South Florida for their support. 5-4-3-2-1 blast off to the #bitewithbelkys 30 minute special @wsvn thanks for all your support South Florida. I ❤you pic.twitter.com/w9aPGx3rgk— Belkys Nerey (@belkysnerey) March 25, 2017For your continued “Bite” helpings, tune in to 7News on Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m and Sundays at 7 a.m. for of all her delicious creations.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

"7s Nerey serves up halfhour Bite with Belkys"

OBITUARY Hazel Dean Barnes 81

first_imgTupelo, MS — Hazel Dean Barnes, 81, passed away Monday, January 21, 2019, at Tupelo Nursing and Rehab Center. On May 20, 1937, she was born to Joseph Bailey and Zera Fleming Bailey in Booneville. She was married to her soul mate and love of her life, the late Norman Barnes for 33 years and they made their home in Wilmington, Massachusetts. Hazel was quite the homemaker and a passionate dedicated foster mom. She possessed a selfless soul with a giving heart who had a passion for taking care of others, especially her family and foster children. She will forever be remembered for her nurturing spirit as she was a wonderful mother.  She enjoyed spending time with her family and especially her grandchildren.Survivors include her sons, James Barnes of Tupelo, Richard Barnes and his wife, Meredith of Tupelo, Scott Barnes of Mantachie and Stephen Barnes of Canada; seven grandchildren, Jennifer Norris and her husband, Brian of Newbury Port, Massachusetts, Krystal Alfreds and her husband, Charlie of Tupelo, Amanda Barnes of Charlotte, North Carolina, Brianna Barnes of Tupelo, Natalie Barnes of Tupelo, Randall Barnes of Memphis, Tennessee and Joey Barnes of Tupelo; eight great-grandchildren; three sisters, Earnestine White of Booneville, Brenda Little and her husband, Randy of Tupelo and Faye Foster and her husband, Tony of Tupelo.She was preceded in death by her husband, Norman Barnes; parents, Joseph and Zera Bailey; and brother, Jake “JC” Bailey.Visitation was held from 10 a.m. until 11 a.m. on Wednesday, January 23, 2019 at W.E. Pegues, Tupelo. Graveside services honoring her life were held on 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, January 23, 2019 at Tupelo Memorial Park.(NOTE: The above obituary is from W.E. Pegues Funeral Directors.)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 wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedOBITUARY: Verda J. Murray, 90In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Phyllis (Lanzilli) Catalogna, 98In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Janet (Colucci) O’Connor, 86In “Obituaries”last_img read more

"OBITUARY Hazel Dean Barnes 81"

Wall collapse kills 2 workers

first_imgTwo construction workers were killed and another was injured as an under-construction wall of a bridge on the embankment of Singho river collapsed on them in Keraniganj on Tuesday morning, reports UNB.The deceased were Awlia, 25, and Moshiur Rahman, 40.Abu Hena Mostafa Kamal, sub-inspector of Keraniganj model police station, said the wall and mud collapsed around 9:00am while a group of workers was working there, leaving the duo dead on the spot and another injured.last_img

"Wall collapse kills 2 workers"

Galveston Researchers And The French Government Have A Question What To Do

first_img Share Sargassum seaweed covers a Galveston beach.In the summer of 2014 on the beach in Galveston, the sargassum seaweed dominated the landscape.“It was a nuisance, it stunk. It drove tourists away,” said Gil Rowe, a professor at Texas A&M University at Galveston.The sargassum that showed up in Galveston has perplexed researchers ever since it left in 2014. Now, four years later, the sargassum mystery has brought scientists, a United Nations representative, and a special, French government attaché, all the way to Galveston, just to talk about the seaweed. Tom Linton heads the Galveston research lab and was one of the organizers of the international meetup. He says this whole thing — it started with a simple question:“Why did we in 2014 have sargassum on the Galveston beaches hip deep? In 2015 2016 2017, not a sprig of sargassum. Not enough for graduate students who had that is an integral part of the research to conduct their research,” Linton said. “So how do we get sargassum here?”A sargassum is no good for beaches. It smells bad, it’s unsightly, and it disrupts tourism, but sargassum also makes for good deep sea fishing, so some people want it out off the coast, where they can use it, but not smell it. Since different groups want more or less sargassum in different places, it’s useful for researchers to understand how it moves and where it’s going. To figure out why sargassum wound up on the Galveston beach, Linton and his team pulled every copy of the Galveston Daily News from eighteen-forty-two until twenty-fourteen.“So we started plotting it and it looked like there was a seven or eight year cycle to when it’s really heavy and when it’s really light,” Linton said. “2014 blew that out of the water. It didn’t fit. And nothing is fit since 2014.”But that’s not the last anyone has seen of sargassum. Since 2014, the seaweed has shown up on beaches in the French Antilles, and on the African coast at mouth of the Congo River.“So it’s a real problem because the massive strandings of sargassum on the beach is a problem for tourism. It’s also a problem for local activities, for the coastal sailors, also for the fishermen,” said Frederic Menard, one of French researchers visiting Galveston to learn more about sargassum.The fishermen he’s talking about — those aren’t people out deep sea fishing who like sargassum, they’re fishermen who depend on other types of fish for their livelihoods. Sailors off the coast of Nigeria and other countries have come back with nets full of nothing but the seaweed.The sargassum problem isn’t just a smelly, tourism and food-supply threatening issue. There’s a chance sargassum appearances are an indicator of something larger, something that has marine biologists like Tom Linton worried. The sargassum, he says: “It is a freeloader. It rides the tide. It rides the currents — the Gulf Stream brings it in or doesn’t bring it in.”And what the Gulf Stream does, it turns out, is really important.“You think of the effect of the Gulf Stream not only on the Gulf of Mexico but the Caribbean coast and when it goes back around England and Scotland and whatever it makes the temperature so that they can live there,” Linton said. “If it’s changing that needs to be found out and you get to use the sargassum as a marker.”So in addition to figuring out how to manage sargassum, knowing where and how the algae is moving can provide one look into the way the planet’s climate is changing. For the rest of us, it’s just helpful to know when the beach smells bad. last_img read more

"Galveston Researchers And The French Government Have A Question What To Do"

WSSC Calls for Delay of Purple Line Construction in Hyattsville

first_imgBy Mark F. Gray, Staff Writer, mgray@afro.comMetro purple line expansion – which is supposed to speed up travel time between Prince George’s and Montgomery Counties for commuters – is facing another delay.  However, unlike previous delays regarding jurisdictional boundaries or financial responsibility, the next hurdle facing the project appears to be a construction issue.According to a story first reported by WTOP-FM, the Washington Suburban Sanitary Commission (WSSC) has asked that the light rail project “cease and desist” construction near a major water main in Hyattsville at the Glenridge Rail Storage Yard.  WSSC officials have repeatedly told the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) that its construction of the purple line threatens a 66-inch water pipe and the state must relocate the pipe around the rail yard.WSSC called for a delay of Purple Line construction in Hyattsville after reports of the rail being built on top of a water pipe. (Courtesy Photo)“I am writing to demand that you cease unauthorized construction work at the Glenridge Rail Storage Yard until further notice,”  WSSC General Manager Carla Reid wrote in a letter to MTA administrator Kevin Quinn.WSSC reportedly claims the pipe has to be relocated around the rail yard because they need immediate and unobstructed access to the pipes, which are crucial to water service for residents of southern Prince George’s County.   The commission is responsible for more than 5,500 miles of water mains in Prince George’s and Montgomery counties and it provides water to 1.8 million residents.“These water mains, especially a water main of this size, they’re under tremendous amounts of pressure, holding millions of gallons of water,” said WSSC’s Chuck Brown. “So if something were to happen, if this main were to break, it could be devastating.”MTA officials claim to be sensitive and cautious while trying to make up for delays that have hampered the start of the overall project, which is already behind schedule and over budget.  The purple line construction project already costs $5.6 billion and the delays will likely add about $215 million to it.“We have not constructed anything atop their pipe and we’re working to address their other concerns to keep the Purple Line moving forward,” said MTA Director of Project Delivery and Finance Jeff Ensor.Ensor also reportedly said that the MTA is working through details now of helping to find a way to relocate the pipe around the rail yard after touring the area with its contractor.The purple line has been delayed by a series of legal proceedings and environmental issues.  In 2017, a federal court dismissed a lawsuit aimed at stopping the project. Another delay occurred when the contractor building the purple line found it more difficult than expected to coordinate with the CSX railroad. The state of Maryland also missed some of its own deadlines for buying land and reviewing environmental plans.Research indicates delays and cost overruns are fairly typical of major public transportation projects. University of Oxford scholar Bent Flyvbjerg analyzed 258 transportation infrastructure projects from around the world and found that nine in ten exceeded their cost estimates. The overruns were greater on rail projects than road projects but averaged 28 percent across the board.The Purple Line already began construction a year behind schedule following the lawsuit so it won’t open at the earliest before February 2023.   However, the February 2023 opening date is possible only if work is accelerated according to the Purple Line Transit Partners (PLTP). The PLTP, a team of companies building the 16-mile line and helping to finance its construction, has also told the state, it could open as late as June 2024.MTA officials issued a statement in January stating, “we are still working on developing a recovery schedule to open the Purple Line for revenue service by the end of 2022.”last_img read more

"WSSC Calls for Delay of Purple Line Construction in Hyattsville"

Study shows female frogs susceptible to decoy effect

first_img Play A chorus of túngara frogs in Gamboa, Panama. Choruses, from which females choose their mates can be composed of a handful or many males. (Noise outside of the range of calls has been filtered for clarity). Credit: Amanda M. Lea The researchers do not really know why the females responded they way they did, but plan to conduct more studies to see if they can find out—they suspect it may have an evolutionary impact that is not readily apparent. Vision stimulates courtship calls in the grey tree frog Explore further PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen (Phys.org)—A pair of researchers has found that female túngaras, frogs that live in parts of Mexico and Central and South America, appear to be susceptible to the “decoy effect.” In their paper published in the journal Science, Amanda Lea and Michael Ryan describe lab experiments they carried out with female frogs and recorded calls by males, and what they found during their observations. Citation: Study shows female frogs susceptible to ‘decoy effect’ (2015, August 28) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-08-female-frogs-susceptible-decoy-effect.html Male túngara frog calling within a chorus in Gamboa, Panama. Males gather in choruses to advertise for potential mates. Females approach male callers and show preferences for males based on call properties. Credit: Amanda M. Leacenter_img More information: Irrationality in mate choice revealed by túngara frogs, Science 28 August 2015: Vol. 349 no. 6251 pp. 964-966. DOI: 10.1126/science.aab2012ABSTRACTMate choice models derive from traditional microeconomic decision theory and assume that individuals maximize their Darwinian fitness by making economically rational decisions. Rational choices exhibit regularity, whereby the relative strength of preferences between options remains stable when additional options are presented. We tested female frogs with three simulated males who differed in relative call attractiveness and call rate. In binary choice tests, females’ preferences favored stimulus caller B over caller A; however, with the addition of an inferior “decoy” C, females reversed their preferences and chose A over B. These results show that the relative valuation of mates is not independent of inferior alternatives in the choice set and therefore cannot be explained with the rational choice models currently used in sexual selection theory. Journal information: Science © 2015 Phys.org This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. In the wild, male túngaras offer one of two types of calls when looking to attract a female; one sounds a little like a whine, while the other has more of a chuck sound—the males also alter the duration of the call. Prior studies have shown that females tend to prefer calls that are low (indicating a bigger frog) and that last a little longer. But, the research duo report, the females can be caused to change their mind under the right circumstances.Scientists that study human behavior have found that there is an odd thing that happens when people go to buy something, a used car for example. If shown two cars, a cost minded customer is more likely to choose a cheap small car over a bigger more expensive one—unless they are also shown one that is similar to the bigger one, but costs more—that can cause some customers to change their minds and pick the intermediate option, rather than the one that is cheapest—something that has been called the “decoy effect.” And now it appears that some female frogs are susceptible to it as well.In their study Lea and Ryan placed female frogs in an enclosure that also held three speakers, placed some distance apart. The researchers played male frog noises on the speakers and watched to see which speaker attracted the female. They noted that as expected, when given two options, a very attractive call and one considered intermediate, the female generally went with the more attractive call option. But when three calls were made, that were highly attractive, intermediately attractive, and of low attractiveness, the females tended to go with the intermediate choice instead.last_img read more

"Study shows female frogs susceptible to decoy effect"

Tahiti to develop into a smart island nation

first_imgThe French Polynesia Ministry of Tourism announced a new partnership with Tahiti Innovation Labs and Florida-based Travel Startups Incubator to develop the Tahiti Smart Tourism initiative.The long-term project goals include expanding free Wi-Fi access beyond the resorts, boosting visitor arrivals by digitalising the guest experience, and developing new opportunities for local job growth and economic development.The strategy hinges on developing a more robust, multi-layered Internet backbone. The Tahitian islands have had broadband access since the installation of fibre optic connectivity to Hawaii in 2010. To help boost the quality and reach of service, local telecom companies such as Smart Tahiti Networks and Open Garden are developing peer-to-peer ‘mesh’ networks that don’t require cellular service, which instead take advantage of apps like FireChat.Thierry Lehartel, Co-founder of Tahiti Innovation Labs and Smart Tahiti Networks, stated that the islands need to develop a digital ecosystem to attract next generation consumers who rely on fast and free Internet to navigate their travel journey and communicate with their social networks.Through the Ministry’s Smart Tourism initiative, if visitors can easily connect anywhere without any cost barriers, that will pave the way for a full array of new tech-oriented travel experiences. These include geo-location apps for self-guided tours, friend-finder apps, on-island instant messaging, and 24/7 assistance networks in multiple languages.last_img read more

"Tahiti to develop into a smart island nation"

Maastricht The Netherlands – Reported by Elite Tr

first_imgMaastricht, The Netherlands – Reported by Elite Traveler, the Private Jet Lifestyle MagazineThe overall results at TEFAF Maastricht 2010 confirms that the art market has remained robust during the economic crisis. The Fair’s importance to the market cannot be underestimated. This year’s TEFAF Art Market Report states that in 2009 just over 50% of all sales in the global marketplace took place in the EU and that 55% of all sales are generated by dealers. TEFAF Maastricht provides a dynamic forum attracting 263 dealers from 17 countries and collectors from around the world. The visitor figures for the 2010 Fair will be around 72,500, representing an increase of circa 7%. TEFAF Maastricht took place in the MECC (Maastricht Exhibition & Congress Centre) Maastricht between March 12-21, 2010.Many international collectors traveled to the fair by private jet. Maastricht/Aachen Airport reported 171 private aircraft landing during the course of the Fair with 82 planes arriving in time for the Private View on Thursday 11th March. US collectors, both private and institutional, were back in force and their re-found confidence was reflected in sales. A leading dealer also commented on the increasing importance of European collectors, who over the last decade have grown both in number and spending power, describing them as ‘knowledgeable and decisive’.TEFAF Maastricht is often described as a museum where everything is for sale and exhibiting dealers appreciate the fact that the Fair is taken so seriously by museums worldwide. Representatives from more than 150 museums and institutions from over 17 countries visited the Fair and museum sales and reservations were reported throughout the Fair.The new section TEFAF on Paper was very well received. It was beautifully presented and showcased a wide range of works on paper from prints, drawings and photographs to books and Japanese screens. Parisian dealer Tanakaya had a very good Fair, selling amongst other items, two very rare early prints by Hashiguchi Goyô entitled Kami sukero Onna, 1921 and Keshô no Onna, 1918, which sold for €32,000 and €30,000 respectively. An oil and tempera painting with pencil underdrawing on canvas, circa 1832-3, entitled The Gleaning Field by Samuel Palmer was sold by London specialist Lowell Libson to an American private client. Photography dealer, Johannes Faber from Vienna, sold eight photographs to a mixture of new European and American clients, including Nude with Skull, multicolor bromide print, Prague 1922, signed by the artist, Frantisek Dritikol for €22,000.The section of Paintings, Drawings and Prints has long been considered one of the great strengths of TEFAF Maastricht and required viewing for any serious collector of such works. Sales were solid, particularly of works that were new to the market. Galerie Canesso, Paris sold Portrait of a Man by Cornelis Cornelisz van Haarlem (1562-1638) to an American collector while De Jonkheere from Paris sold twelve round oil on panel paintings, a number of which are signed and dated 1599, entitled The Twelve Months of the Year, by Abel Grimmer (1570-1618). Daxer & Marschall from Munich were delighted with the fair and sales included Interior, Strandgade 30, a view of the interior of the painter’s house on the first floor in Copenhagen by Vilhelm Hammershoi (1865-1916), which sold to the Kunsthalle Hamburg.Antiques & Works of Art is the largest section in the Fair, encompassing a very wide range of disciplines and eras. London sculpture specialist, Daniel Katz was delighted to sell a good number of sculptures, including a portrait bust of Louis XIV by François Girardon (1628-1715), was used for the TEFAF 2010 catalogue image, to an American Museum. Modern decorative objects also sold well. Adrian Sassoon from London had an excellent Fair, selling nine works by the Japanese artist Hiroshi Suzuki, including a hammer raised and chased 22 ct gold vase, the only solid gold piece by the artist. Furniture sold during the Fair ranged from 18th-century fine French furniture to 20th-century English Arts & Crafts and much else besides. A Louis XVI bureau plat, circa 1780, made for Denis-Pierre-Jean Papillon, the intendant des Menus-Plaisir du Roi, was sold to an Italian Collector by Perrin Antiquairs, Paris. An important macassar ebony library table, 1904, by Ernest Gimson (1864-1919), with satinwood and walnut banding and silvered handles made for Lord Bathurst, Cirencester Park, was sold by Blairman & Sons, London also to a private collector. Blumka Gallery, New York sold several early Limoges enamel pieces including a plaque of a cross, 1190-1195, a champlevé enamel on engraved copper central panel of a processional cross formerly in the Keir Collection. London jewelry dealer, Hancocks was delighted to sell a rare, important Egyptian revival necklace circa 1880, designed as a graduated fringe of varying motifs, known as the Lillie Langtry necklace, because it was bought by Edward VII for her when she was his mistress.Antiquities dealer Rupert Wace, London sold an Egyptian Wood Mummy Mask, 1069-715 BC with an asking price of €150,000 to a private collector, as well as a Roman bronze statuette of Aphrodite wearing a silver diadem, 1st century AD which is destined for a private museum in France.Sales in the Modern Art section were strong, supporting the thesis that blue-chip 20th-century and contemporary art has remained firm in that particular market. Hauser & Wirth, Zurich, London, New York made a number of sales including Wrapped Walk Way: Sonsbeek ’71 by Christo (b. 1935) from the Lauffs Collection, which sold to a European private collector. The project was planned for two parks in the city of Arnhem but never realized. Amongst the sales on the stand at Gallery Thomas, Munich was a gouache on black cardboard work entitled Walking Couple 1916 by Wassily Kandinsky (1866-1944), which sold for a price in the region of €400,000 and an oil on panel painting by August Macke (1887-1914) entitled, Two Riding Persons, 1911 with a sale price in the region of €250,000. An oil on panel painting by Paul Klee (1879-1940), See-Gespenst, 1933 formerly in the collection of Daniel Henry Kahnweiler was sold by Salis & Vertes from Zurich to a private collector.Summing up the mood at the end of the Fair, Ben Janssens, Chairman of TEFAF commented, ‘TEFAF has a solid base of European and American collectors, which in the last two years has enabled it to stand the test of the economic downturn and this year we have seen the emergence of a significant number of the international collectors affirming the Fair’s place in the international arena’.The next TEFAF Maastricht will take place from March 18-27, 2010 in the MECC (Maastricht Exhibition and Congress Centre) in Maastricht.AXA Art is the principal sponsor of TEFAFAXA Art’s partnership with TEFAF provides an important platform to profile the company’s expertise to the art collecting community and to bring attention to subjects of collection management such as the fragility of art objects and important strategies to maintain a collection in optimum condition.www.tefaf.comlast_img read more

"Maastricht The Netherlands – Reported by Elite Tr"