Dene battle territorial govts power grap

first_imgAPTN National NewsDene leaders from across the Northwest Territories are meeting this week to raise concerns over the territorial government’s controversial devolution agreement with Ottawa.The deal would give the territory province-like powers over land and resources.Not everyone is convinced that the agreement is in the best interest of the people that live there.APTN National News reporter Cullen Crozier has this story.last_img

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On Muskrat Falls PM Trudeau says relationship with Indigenous peoples based on

first_imgAPTN National NewsPrime Minister Justin Trudeau on Tuesday said Canada’s relationship with Indigenous peoples was based on “science.”Trudeau made the statement during question period after he was pressed on Ottawa’s perceived inaction on the ongoing Muskrat Falls controversy which has seen occupations, protests, RCMP raids and arrests.Trudeau said during question period it is up to the Newfoundland and Labrador government to consult and engage with the Innu, Inuit and Metis on the project.“The relationship with Indigenous peoples is extraordinarily important for this country, based on respect, based on science, based on partnership,” said Trudeau. “That is why we are ensuring that the province continues to consult and engage on this project with the full respect that we all expect will be shown towards Indigenous peoples.”Click here for APTN’s coverage on Muskrat FallsMulcair, who usually leads the round of questioning for his party in the House of Commons, referred to a recent comment by Newfoundland and Labrador Liberal MP Nick Whalen who suggested the Innu and Inuit should just eat less fish if they’re worried about methylmercury poisoning. Whalen later apologized.“Hunger strikers and their supporters travelled all the way from Labrador to bring concerns about Muskrat Falls to the prime minister here in Ottawa,” said Mulcair. “All they got in return was a flippant, insulting comment from a Liberal backbencher…What is the prime minister doing, specifically to address the concerns raised by the Inuit and Innu about poisoning of their fishery with methylmercury?”Inuit hunger strikers Bill Gauthier, Delilah Saunders and Jerry Kohlmeister are currently in Ottawa to meet with MPs about their concerns about the project’s impact on their traditional foods and way of life.The protests against the Muskrat Falls hydro-electric project in Labrador was triggered by science following a Havard University report that warned flooding caused by the dam would cause methylmercury to seep into the fish and land if the flood zone wasn’t cleared of topsoil and vegetation.news@aptn.ca@APTNNewslast_img read more

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Cenovus makes oilsands cuts to avoid low prices not for charity says

first_imgCALGARY – Cenovus Energy Inc. says it is cutting oilsands production, putting more barrels in storage, ramping up rail shipments and may delay producing from a nearly completed expansion project to avoid current steep price discounts.The cutbacks will likely help relieve a glut of oil in Western Canada blamed on not enough export pipeline space, but CEO Alex Pourbaix said Wednesday the Calgary-based company is doing it strictly for the benefit of its shareholders.“We’re not going to carry the industry on our backs,” he said on a conference call to discuss third-quarter results.“We’re going to do this as long as we can justify that we’re creating value for our shareholders … But we are not doing this for charity, we’re doing it because it’s the right thing for our company and hopefully other players would have a similar view.”Last week, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley called on Ottawa to help increase Canadian crude-by-rail capacity as a short-term solution to improve market access and support prices.On Monday, analysts with RBC suggested the province could help relieve the oil glut by giving the industry a temporary royalty holiday — essentially paying producers not to produce — a suggestion the province promptly rejected.Pourbaix clarified that he’s not calling for a concerted industry production curtailment or government action but simply wants to point out that even a small reduction of less than 300,000 bpd in overall output would improve spot prices.On the call, Drew Zieglgansberger, senior vice-president of operations, said Cenovus will use “dynamic storage” to leave warmed bitumen underground at its Foster Creek and Christina Lake steam-powered oilsands wells south of Fort McMurray.A similar method was used to cut bitumen production by 40,000 to 50,000 barrels per day for six or seven weeks early this year to avoid low prices, but the new cutbacks would be for lower volumes because they would likely have to be in place longer, he added.Cenovus said it is starting to load bitumen from its Edmonton area rail terminal under a three-year deal signed recently with Canada’s two major railways to move 100,000 bpd to the U.S. Gulf Coast to be refined. Shipments from a second terminal in central Alberta are to begin next year.The 100,000-bpd capacity Cenovus terminal is being expanded to about 120,000 bpd — big enough to load two unit-car oil trains per day — by early 2019, said Keith Chiasson, senior vice-president of downstream.Cenovus’s 50,000-bpd Christina Lake G steam-driven oilsands expansion project could start production next year, Zieglgansberger reported, but the company won’t commission it unless market access is assured.Analysts applauded Cenovus on Wednesday for reduced capital spending in the three months ended Sept. 30 and a cut in its expected spending for the year by $250 million to a midpoint of $1.35 billion.They were also impressed by its announcement that net debt had been paid down by about $1.6 billion to less than $8 billion, using cash from operations and the $625-million sale of a northwest Alberta liquids-rich natural gas project.“While the company remains relatively disadvantaged given its exposure to wide crude oil differentials, this was a much improved quarter … as strong refining results helped mitigate the impact of the wide differentials on the production side,” said Edward Jones analyst Jennifer Rowland in a report.Cenovus reported better-than-expected third-quarter revenue of $5.86 billion, up from $4.39 billion a year ago, on strong production and higher realized prices.It reported New York-traded West Texas Intermediate crude prices increased almost 45 per cent versus the third quarter of 2017, while Western Canadian Select bitumen blend crude increased only 23 per cent, resulting in the difference widening to an average of US$22.25 per barrel compared with US$9.94 a year earlier.In the current quarter, those discounts have peaked at more than US$50 per barrel.The company reported a net loss from continuing operations of $242 million, versus expectations of a net profit of $270 million according to Thomson Reuters Eikon, and the year-earlier profit of $275 million.The current loss was mainly due to non-cash losses of $795 million on the gas project sale and $630 million on a reassessment of its real estate portfolio after it sublet eight floors of unneeded Cenovus office space in The Bow tower in downtown Calgary.Follow @HealingSlowly on Twitter.Companies in this story: (TSX:CVE)last_img read more

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Lets make this year count Pandya tells KL Rahul

first_imgNew Delhi: Their TV reality show controversy now firmly behind them, India all-rounder Hardik Pandya urged compatriot K L Rahul to make the most of this year as both get ready to play for the country in the World Cup starting May 30. Rahul and Pandya were both named in the 15-member World Cup squad led by Virat Kohli, months after the pair were briefly suspended by theA Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for their mysogynistic comments on a popular reality show. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over ChandigarhOn Rahul’s 27th birthday, Pandya posted a picture with the opener on his Instagram account which read: “Brothers for life !!!!! No matter what !!! Love u bro @rahulkl happy birthday. Let’s make it our year.” Rishabh Pant, Axar Patel and Krunal Pandya were also seen in the picture. Rahul came back strongly after the suspension was lifted pending an inquiry by the BCCI ombudsman. The stylish right-hander turned out for India ‘A’ before faring well for India in the two-match T20I series against Australia at home in February. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced laterIn the IPL so far, Rahul has looked in the pink of form for Kings XI Punjab. He is second on the list of batsmen with most runs with 387 in 9 matches, including a hundred, at 64.50. He has already hit four fifties so far. Pandya has also been in form with the bat and has amassed 186 runs in 8 games at 46.50 with a strike rate of over 191. He has also picked 7 wickets so far at 33.28 including a man-of-the-match winning performance against Chennai Super Kings.last_img read more

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Norwegian premier to cochair UNbacked advisory group on climate change financing

Mr. Stoltenberg replaces the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom (UK) Gordon Brown.“Prime Minister Stoltenberg will now work with the other co-chair, Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, to complete the work of the Advisory Group,” a statement issued by the spokesperson of the Secretary-General said.Mr. Ban thanked Mr. Brown for his service as co-chair of the advisory group until last month.The Secretary-General also announced that he had received a communication from the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, David Cameron, in which he expressed his country’s continued support for the work of the advisory group.Mr. Cameron has nominated UK’s Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, Chris Huhne, as a member of the advisory group, Mr. Ban said.The Advisory Group, which Mr. Ban launched in February, is tasked with drafting practical proposals to boost both short- and long-term financing for climate change mitigation and adaptation strategies in developing countries. Its membership includes President Bharrat Jagdeo of Guyana, as well as senior ministers and officials from central banks and other experts on finance and development.The group is expected to issue its recommendations before the next conference of parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), to be held in Mexico later this year. 6 June 2010Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today announced that the Prime Minister of Norway, Jens Stoltenberg, has accepted his invitation to become the co-chair of the United Nations-appointed high-level advisory group on climate change financing with immediate effect. read more

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RIM dismisses biting BlackBerry 10 dead on arrival report

Meanwhile, the company said it had won U.S. security clearance for devices based on the new platform.RIM announced early Thursday that it had received the crucial Federal Information Processing Standard certification, known as FIPS 140-2.The certification would enable government agencies to deploy the new devices.“This is the first time BlackBerry products have been FIPS certified ahead of launch,” RIM said.Many political staffers, journalists and others swear by the BlackBerry over other devices for one main reason —its keyboard, which can make writing on the fly fast and easy compared with the touch screens offered by RIM’s competitors.The BB10 line will include a touch screen option, but RIM maintains that its operating system will make typing faster than on other smart phones.The company said earlier this month that its new BlackBerry smartphones were being tested by 50 phone carriers around the world.RIM aims to have the new devices on store shelves in the first quarter of 2013, after the crucial holiday tech sales season.The Canadian Press OTTAWA — Research In Motion turned to core supporters Wednesday in Ottawa, hoping to upsell its new BlackBerry 10 operating system as the company’s shares fell after a biting report from a securities analyst.The company invited federal politicians and their staff to a sneak preview of the yet-to-be-released devices, an event that RIM’s Canadian managing director acknowledged was a bit like preaching to the converted.“Government is a critical constituency for RIM and for BlackBerry,” said Andrew MacLeod.“It’s where we got our start, in many ways, and it’s an area that we are going to continue to innovate and deliver value.”RIM shares fell by more than 8% Wednesday to US$8.23 after a report from an analyst at Pacific Crest Securities warned the BlackBerry 10 software may be “dead on arrival.”We’re focused on delivering value and innovating, and we think if we do that, then we’ll get the rest of the stuff to follow“We believe BB10 is likely to be DOA,” James Faucette was quoted saying in a research note obtained by Bloomberg. “We expect the new operating system to be met with a lukewarm response at best.”MacLeod dismissed Faucette as “not a fan” and as just one voice in a varied landscape of people looking at the new platform.“Two other analysts came out this week with some very, very positive reactions to the platform and some positive reactions to our prospects,” MacLeod told The Canadian Press.“We’re focused on delivering value and innovating, and we think if we do that, then we’ll get the rest of the stuff to follow.”The Waterloo, Ont.-based company’s stock had been on a rally of late, lifting steadily in the past week to a four-month high. Wednesday’s tumble nearly wiped out all of those gains.[np-related]Besides showcasing the BB10 for politicos and business people, RIM was planning to announce Thursday how it would migrate some of the key security features of its current suite of devices to the new model.“We’re really going to make sure the core DNA — what made Blackberry so attractive to government customers, to enterprise customers — will of course be a key part of the BlackBerry 10 and architecture and system moving forward,” said MacLeod.Getty Images/Justin Sullivan read more

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Sick of all your bank fees Take these simple steps to save

OTTAWA — Complaining about bank fees is a bit like complaining about the weather. We all do it.But unlike the weather, those in the know say Canadians can do something about the fees they pay their bank with a little negotiating and shopping around.Alterna Savings branch manager Angela Dzinas said someone with more than one account as well as a mortgage and a line of credit all with the same bank may be in a position to have some fees waived.“Loyalty counts a lot with financial institutions, so the more products and services you have with us does count for something,” Dzinas says.“We typically try to work with our members and customers to deliver a package and a product that suits them and saves them money.”But keeping fees to a minimum means picking the right account and that starts with understanding what you need.Dzinas said you should think about often you use your bank card and what you use the account for. How often do you take out money from a bank machine and how often do you pay using your debit card? Do you need cheques? How many do you write?For some, an account with no monthly fee that offers relatively few free transactions each month might be the right choice, while for others an account with a higher monthly fee, but more or unlimited transactions might end up being cheaper.Ottawa should ban ‘pay-to-pay’ fees charged by big banks, NDP saysFederal budget 2015 to give consumers ‘cooling off period’ for banking decisionsThe editor of RateSupermarket.ca, which helps you compare bank fees and mortgage rates, said while a monthly fee may not seem like much, they can add up over time.“If you’re paying let’s say $10 per account per month and you stay with the bank for a number of years, you’re potentially looking at thousands of dollars that you’re spending on fees,” Penelope Graham said.The Financial Consumer Agency of Canada has an online tool to help you review the various options offered by Canada’s big banks and other financial institutions.The website includes 243 products from 30 financial institutions and is updated regularly by banks and credit unions.Agency spokeswoman Natasha Nystrom says the online tool allows you to narrow your search by account type and feature and then compare them.“It is up to the consumer to really take a look and take an informed decision as to which account would best meet their needs and according to their habits,” she said.Nystrom suggested Canadians looking to save may want to consider accounts that require a minimum balance, but carry no or a lower fee, or look for discounts if you have more than one account or financial product with a bank.She says you shouldn’t be afraid to ask questions about things you don’t understand and be careful to read the fine print for your account.“Really take the time to read your terms and conditions, to understand what you’re getting into,” she said.The Royal Bank sparked outrage earlier this year when it decided to raise its fees including a change that will charge customers a fee to make a mortgage or other preauthorized payment if the customer had already used up all of their free transactions for a month.However, the Royal Bank wasn’t alone. All of Canada’s big banks raised at least some of their fees by a lesser or greater degree in recent months.But there are alternatives to the big banks including credit unions and online banks.“The competitive landscape is much broader than it ever was,” Dzinas says. read more

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Fatal crash in Fort Erie

(Video added) Niagara Police are reporting a fatal crash in Fort Erie.Police say a motorcyclist was going eastbound on Dominion Road, west of Kraft Road, and collided with a SUV. The driver of the motorcycle was pronounced dead at the scene.Dominion between Kraft and Brighton Avenue is still closed for an ongoing investigation.The victim’s name has not been released.00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09

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Quebec suspends antiUber bill 90 days to negotiate with ridehailing company

by The Canadian Press Posted Jun 7, 2016 4:48 pm MDT Last Updated Jun 8, 2016 at 7:00 am MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email Quebec suspends anti-Uber bill 90 days to negotiate with ride-hailing company QUEBEC – The Quebec government will suspend the implementation of an anti-Uber bill for 90 days in order to have more time to negotiate with the ride-hailing company.Transport Minister Jacques Daoust said Tuesday the suspension gives company representatives time to come up with a pilot project that satisfies the government and which would allow Uber to operate legally in the province.The Quebec taxi industry lobby said it was a “satisfactory compromise,” but still demanded Uber stop all its operations in the province until an agreement on the pilot project can be reached with the government.In response, taxi drivers said they were ready to cancel all planned protests during the Canadian Grand Prix weekend in Montreal.Daoust said he still wanted his anti-Uber bill passed by Friday, but his amendment would delay the bill’s implementation by three months.The bill would force Uber drivers to obtain taxi permits and licences in order to operate, something the company said would force it to leave Quebec.“Uber is maybe the way of the future,” Daoust told reporters. “But at the end of the day they have to be respectful of Quebec.” read more

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Panasonic trims the semirugged Toughbook 53 down to 56 pounds

first_imgThis morning Panasonic officially announced the Toughbook 53, an update to the company’s popular Toughbook 52. Despite the minor change in name the Toughbook 53 features substantial differences from the older model, including moving from a 15.4-inch display to a 14-inch one.  This change allows the semi-rugged 53 to start at 5.6 pounds, substantially lighter then the previous model’s 7.2 pounds. This changes didn’t stop there either, the 53 is one of the few semi-rugged notebooks that can stand up to vehicle-mounting and this summer the 53 will ship with 4G LTE compatibility, making it the first Toughbook to do so.In addition to the smaller, LED-backlit display and external changes, the components inside were all upgraded to the latest Sandy Bridge (second generation Intel Core i3/i5) gear. There is now the option for a 7200RPM hard drive, which Panasonic will use to bring increased storage performance for buyers that don’t opt for SSDs (which they see as largely unnecessary given the Toughbook’s extreme hard drive protection). Like the 52, a resistive touchscreen version will be made available.Why move to the smaller display? Panasonic closely follows customer demand and they found that the weight/size saving was worth it over the 15.4-inch LCD on the older models. The 53 has both VGA and HDMI outputs so if multiple people will be viewing it’s easy enough to connect to an extra display or projector.The toughen design and magnesium body mean that if you ever lose your grip on the notebook’s handle it is rated to survive a 2.5-foot drop. A lot of other notebooks, like HP’s Elitebook line, tout their 810G (mil-spec) testing but few can stand up to a 30-inch drop. Even fewer will come with the Toughbook 53’s more rugged features, like covered ports and that handle. Not to mention the useful perks like a quick release hard drive, backlit keyboard, optional dual ethernet, and multitouch trackpad. There is also USB 3.0 and an SDXC slot.As always, Panasonic made battery life a priority with the 53. The model should be good for up to 10 hours of battery life with the Core i5 model and the Long Life battery pack.The Toughbook 53 won’t entirely be replacing the 52, that system will remain on sale (in the Core i5 configuration) for the time being.The Toughbook 53 (Core i5/4GB RAM) will start shipping in June for $1899 while the Core i3/2GB model will ship in August and start at $1599. The touchscreen Toughbook 53 will hit in July for an estimated $2449. Don’t get too attached to those prices though, the Toughbook 53 can be outfitted with a SmartCard reader, 128GB SSD, 1.3MP webcam, dual antenna pass-through and a number of other upgrades.toughbook_53_01toughbook_53_0153_LeftTouchUp-High-res53_Head_OnTouchUp-High-res53_Closed_HdOnTouchUp-High-reslast_img read more

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Samsung Reveals Galaxy Fold Three Galaxy S10s

first_img The Witcher’s ‘Gwent’ Coming Soon To MobileSteelSeries Arctis 1 Is World’s First USB-C Wireless Gaming Headset Stay on target If you choose to pronounce it correctly (which you shouldn’t) the “X” in iPhone X represents the ten years it’s been since Apple changed the smartphone game. So that means it’s also been about ten years since Samsung started Apple’s main Android rival the Galaxy series. Two billion sold devices later Samsung just revealed a suite of new Galaxy smartphones at its recent Unpacked event, proving the company hasn’t just been twiddling its thumbs and making batteries blow up for the past decade.The most interesting device on display was the Galaxy Fold, the smartphone you can fold up like a piece of paper Samsung first detailed last year. For me the most exciting part is that you can use this thing as a relatively small 4.6-inch phone. But for most people the key gimmick is how you can unfold the phone into a 7.3-inch tablet.There’s a lot of cool engineering going on to make this work. The (potentially colorful) hinge is a hidden system of gears. There are two batteries funneling into one power source. Six cameras are spread across different parts of the interior and surface. And the 7nm processor and 12GB of RAM power impressive app multitasking and “App Continuity” features like looking at Google Maps on the front and then unfolding to seamlessly see a bigger picture.This Nintendo DS for the modern era comes at a cost though. At $1,980 you’re basically paying for the price of the two phones you’re buying. And that’s before upgrades like 5G and more storage than the base 512GB. But the Galaxy Fold doesn’t launch until April 26, so there’s plenty of time to decide.You may in fact choose to get one of the three new Galaxy S10 phones instead. Like the current iPhone X series, the 6.1-inch S10 now has a cheaper 5.8-inch S10E model to complement the larger 6.4-inch model.Beyond the new range of options the S10 series also introduces some nifty new features, as part of Samsung’s desire to prove there’s still room left for smartphone hardware innovation. The sensors are housed in a tiny hole notch that lets the AMOLED display be even more expansive. The display also has better color accuracy and less blue light. There’s a more secure ultrasonic fingerprint scanner and upgraded Wi-Fi 6 for better connections in crowded areas.Cameras got a lot of love, as they often do at these things. The new lens lets you take wider pictures than before and the camera is smart enough to offer composition advice. Adobe is putting out a version of Premiere Rush for video editing right on the device. And specs are powerful enough not just for productivity apps but also Unity-powered games through adaptive performance.Honestly though the most courageous news is that these Samsung phones still have headphones jacks. Yeah you can use the new Galaxy Buds wireless headphones, and even charge them wirelessly. But a phone should support cool wireless headphones and traditional wired headphones at the same time.The new Samsung Galaxy S10 line starts at $749 and ships March 8. While you wait, why not check out some other cool Android smartphones? Or take a look at Samsung’s new monitors?last_img read more

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Weather Eye: Winter has arrived but chance of snow for holiday is slim

first_img We discussed on Tuesday cooler weather for the holiday weekend and that is still on track. The chance of a white Christmas is slim here in the lowlands but those in the foothills may have one. Snow levels will lower Friday as a low pressure system slides to our south causing a northerly and easterly flow of air to settle in. However, precipitation chances lower and there isn’t really any Arctic air to lock us in a deep freeze.There is still plenty of snow-covered ground just about everywhere east of the Cascades as seen on visual satellite photos yesterday. And speaking of visual, persistent fog was in the western valleys causing a “Bah! Humbug!” attitude for some. Meanwhile in the mountains and at the ocean beaches it was clear and sunny. Most locations along the coast had afternoon temperatures in the balmy 50s and light winds.Wednesday was a classic ‘inversion’ due to warm air aloft and colder valley surface temperatures. Long nights, moist air and calm winds are the main ingredients. The sun is so low in the sky this time of the year it does little to burn the sticky fog away.Was it a fitting arrival for the first official day of winter? Temperature-wise I guess, but the fog can disappear gladly! So expect a little rain later today with a continued chance of showers through Christmas Eve. As mentioned, those in the hilly areas may see snowflakes accumulate and any showers that fall here in the city could have a wintry mix embedded. There is always an outside chance we get a dusting as the weather pattern unfolds but as of this writing late Wednesday, it goes the way of the Grinch.We remember Christmas 2008 as the last official “White Christmas” with over a foot of the white stuff on the ground. It was a year to rejoice for snow lovers as it began to accumulate well before the holidays. Patrick Timm is a local weather specialist. His column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Reach him at http://patricktimm.com.last_img read more

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NAS Pensacola Limits Visitor Access in Response to Navy Guidance

first_imgNaval Air Station Pensacola, Fla., will close its main gate to most visitors starting next week to bring the base in line with security directives issued by the secretary of the Navy, Commanding Officer Capt. Keith Hoskins announced Monday.The change in access at the air station, which Hoskins said would be permanent, will force unescorted visitors who do not possess DOD identification or a visitor’s pass to use the base’s west gate. For visitors to three public attractions on the base — the National Naval Aviation Museum, Fort Barrancas and Pensacola Lighthouse — the new policy will require an eight-mile detour around the air station, reported the Pulse. Visitors to Barrancas National Cemetery, however, still will be able to use the main gate.“The safety and security of everyone who works, lives or visits NAS Pensacola is my priority,” Hoskins said. “This change will bring the installation in alignment with security directives issued by the Secretary of the Navy and are not in response to any specific threat,” he said.The change is not expected to affect access to open-base events such as the annual Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show, reported the Pensacola News Journal.The policy also does not appear to be related to one announced by DOD earlier this month affecting visitors with driver’s licenses from states that have not implemented measures mandated by the REAL ID Act.The new restriction at Pensacola could deter some visitors from coming to the National Naval Aviation Museum, according to museum director Sterling Gilliam.“The lifeblood of a museum is our visitors and our patrons,” Gilliam said, reported the Pulse. “Anything that impacts that is of concern to us. We’ve had extensive discussions and we feel the plan that the base put in place is the best way forward given the security concerns throughout the Department of Defense.”Hoskins emphasized that officials considered the needs of visitors in developing the new policy.“We can’t speculate on what impact this is going to have in terms of tourism onboard NAS Pensacola or the Pensacola area,” Hoskins said. “But I can tell you throughout the process we partnered with all the stakeholders to ensure this was done in the most efficient manner to ensure that we have those folks that want to visit our public attractions that they have that opportunity,” he said. Dan Cohen AUTHORlast_img read more

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Budget 2017 Personal computer tablet sales could get a fillip

first_imgIf Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Finance Minister Arun Jaitley were to accept a suggestion by computer manufacturers in India, you could get a loan at 3-4 percent per annum to buy personal computers (PCs). The icing on the cake would be income tax exemption for the amount spent to buy a PC; this should herald “achche din” for manufacturers such as Dell, Lenovo and HP.It would also encourage Indians to go digital and embrace cashless transactions, a new fad in India ever since the government scrapped Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes.”To increase PC penetration, it was also proposed that easy loans (3-4% per annum ) should be provided by banks for the purchase of personal computers and cost of PC should be allowed for deduction under Section 80C of Income Tax Act,” a finance ministry official said on Saturday, after the customary pre-budget consultative meeting with the IT industry.The proposed incentive to buy PCs will be “catalyst for a transformation of the country to a digital economy and knowledge economy,” the ministry said, summing up the meeting with the industry leaders that comprised both software and hardware segments.The two bodies representing the IT industry in India are Nasscom (software) and MAIT (hardware). MAIT was represented by Nitin Kunkolienker, vice president.PC sales in India stood at 11.2 million units in the financial year 2015-16. NaMo’s DeMo hits industry hardSales of PCs and other devices have been hit as a result of demonetisation (DeMo), also referred to as “surgical strike” on black money. “Demonetisation induced cash crunch has indeed impacted consumer’s PC purchase, as lower cash velocity is forcing consumers to postpone their discretionary purchases. More than half of PC buying from retail and exclusive stores in India is done through cash, hence we are anticipating that demonetisation should further bring down the consumer market by 33 percent in Q4 2016. The lower tier cities are more cash driven and the magnitude of impact will be larger compared to metros,” Manish Yadav, associate research manager, client devices at IDC India, said in a statement last month.The sale of tablets is expected to drop significantly in the quarter ended December 2016.”From 1.06 million units in Q3 (September quarter) 2016, considering the seasonal decline in Q4 and impact of demonetisation, the tablet shipments is expected to sharply decline sequentially by 23 percent in Q4 2016,” Karthik J, senior market analyst, client devices, IDC India, had said in a statement last month.In the September quarter, 2.5 million PCs were sold overall, marking a decline of 22.5 percent on a year-on-year basis though there was a sequential growth of 17.3 percent over June quarter. The commercial segment accounted for 1.13 million units while the consumer segment accounted for the rest, according to an update by IDC on November 21, 2016.Top PC sellers in India are Dell, Lenovo and HP. As is well known, India’s top software companies include TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Tech Mahindra, HCL Technologies and Mindtree.last_img read more

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Trawler sinks in Jamuna 3 missing

first_imgAt least three people including two minors went missing as a trawler with around 150 passengers on board capsized in the Jamuna river in Char Shivalaya area on Tuesday morning, reports UNB.The trawler coming from Kajirhat in Pabna district sank in the morning when it was heading towards Aricha ghat, said Habibullah Sarkar, officer-in-charge of Shivalaya police station.All of the passengers except the missing three managed to swim ashore, he said.On information, a firefighting unit from Paturia Ghat and a team of divers from the capital rushed in and started a rescue drive, he added.last_img read more

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Return of abused Bangladeshi maids from Saudi calls for govt action

first_imgBangladeshi maids return from Saudi Arabia prompts for government action. File photoMore than 100 Bangladeshi female workers abused or exploited in Saudi Arabia returned home this week, according to human rights activists, fuelling calls to stop sending Bangladeshi women to the Middle East to work as housemaids.Bangladeshi non-government organisation BRAC said an increasing number of women were returning from the Middle East after being mistreated, with about 227 coming back in February – including the latest 100 – compared to 180 in January.The number of Bangladeshi women going to Saudi Arabia to work jumped to about 83,000 in 2017 from about 20,000 in 2015 when the two governments signed an agreement on domestic workers, according to government data.But human rights groups said the surge in numbers had been accompanied by an increasing number of reports of female workers being mistreated and returning home, prompting calls to review Bangladesh’s policy of sending housemaids to the Middle East.Shariful Hasan, head of BRAC’s migration programme, said the women who returned this week were tortured mentally and physically.”They don’t receive their wages properly. They are also physically beaten and tortured,” Hasan told the Thomson Reuters Foundation.”In the last two years we found 25 to 30 women workers from the Middle East who suffered from major mental disorders. We also found five to six of them who were pregnant.”Bangladesh is one of the largest exporters of manpower, with a record one million people going overseas to work in 2017, and the money sent back is the country’s second-highest source of foreign currency earnings after clothing manufacturing.According to data from BRAC’s migration programme, last year about 1,300 women returned from Saudi Arabia, saying they had been tortured or exploited.Raunaq Jahan, a senior civil servant at the Ministry of Expatriates Welfare and Overseas Employment (EWOE), said the Bangladesh government has yet to build a comprehensive system to count the number of returning migrants.EWOE’s airport officials estimated that at least 950 Bangladeshi female workers returned home in 2018 and more than 100 returned this week.Jahan said the government was in the process of interviewing the workers to try to understand the problems they faced.”It will take some time but we will solve this,” she said.But the country’s National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has called for the government to take immediate action.”The stories of torture that we heard from these women were inhumane. Bangladesh should avoid sending housemaids and look at other professions,” said Kazi Reazul Hoque, chairman of the NHRC, an autonomous public body.Nasima Akter, 24, who returned from Saudi Arabia last month, backed fast action by the government.”I used to work for 18 hours a day. At the end of the day, I never had any energy to do anything but collapse and go to sleep. Despite this, I did not get paid for three months. I used to get shouted at whenever I asked for my salary,” she said.”I thought working in Saudi Arabia would make me rich. But if this is the kind of pain you have to go through for that, it’s definitely not worth it.”last_img read more

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Guadalupe County Commissioners Deny Float Fest Permit Promoter Appealing Decision

first_imgFLOAT FEST – CURRENT EVENTS, LLC.Float Fest 2017Guadalupe County commissioners denied a permit to promoters of Float Fest, a two-day event featuring tubing down the San Marcos River and music concerts. The event was expected to attract more than 30,000 tubers and concert-goers, beginning July 20.Float Fest is the brainchild of Marcus Federman, owner of Current Events LLC. Since 2014, Federman has expanded the number of bands playing at the two-day annual event, which takes place five miles east of San Marcos near the town of Martidale.The festival’s neighbors complain that with every festival, traffic in the area and drinking along the river both intensified, sparking safety concerns and noise complaints.Federman told commissioners his company has done everything possible to address those concerns. But commissioners like Jack Shanafelt were not convinced.“You did admit that last year you failed, as far as security goes,” said Shanfelt to Federman. “And now you’re saying this year you’re going to fix it — everything’s going to be fine. I don’t know I can trust that you’re going to do that.”Guadalupe County commissioners rejected Float Fest’s permit for 2018.Federman said he plans to appeal that decision to a district court judge and vowed that the festival will still take place this summer.Here’s to the feeling of summer never fading. #ThisIsFloatFest pic.twitter.com/CN8ltPxrc0— Float Fest (@FloatFest) July 24, 2017Ryan Poppe can be reached at rpoppe@tpr.org or on Twitter @RyanPoppe1 Sharelast_img read more

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What Is Spotify Thinking With its Dance Like Nobodys Paying Ad Campaign

first_img Popular on Variety To promote a free 30-day promotion on its premium platform, Spotify recently launched an ad campaign featuring a hipster euphorically dancing next to the slogan “Dance like nobody’s paying.” The campaign comes after longstanding complaints about the company’s royalty payments, not to mention its attempts to appeal the Copyright Royalty Board’s decision to increase songwriter rates by 44% over the next five years and its recent determination that it had overpaid music publishers by an undisclosed amount in 2018 and is requesting a refund. Predictably, songwriters and music industry pros aren’t happy about the new campaign, which seems to add insult to injury after the above incidents.“Nobody’s paying?,” musician and activist Blake Morgan asked over Twitter. “We musicians are, with our lives.” Executive Vice President of ECR Music Group Amy Gardner also expressed anger over the ad on the social media platform. On its face, the campaign appears to be a careless, if callous, mistake, but what if it’s actually working exactly in the way the Swedish-based music streaming giant intended? Save for this recent campaign, Spotify has built a steadfast reputation for creating some of the most compelling ad content in the music industry. In 2017, Adweek praised the company for converting its user’s listening data into emotionally compelling ads. It’s safe to ask if a company as intelligent, resourced, and influential as Spotify knew exactly what they were getting themselves into by creating an ad like this.Not surprisingly, at the core of many complaints is how it shamelessly the campaign presents music as a free commodity. After Spotify’s free trial period ends, users pay just $10 a month for uninhibited access to as much music as they can listen to, which roughly translates to the cost of a Chipotle burrito and the spare change floating around my car at any given moment. The music industry has long complained about how little Spotify compensates artists, but they’re hardly the worst offender. At $0.00069 per-view, an artist would need to rack up a staggering 2,133,333 monthly plays on YouTube to earn the US’s monthly minimum wage of $1,472. Through Spotify, it takes an average of 336,842 streams to generate that amount. A culture that declares music to be worthless and disposable gets worthless, disposable music. How much longer till we all #DeleteSpotify? Spotify Draws Fire For ‘Tone Deaf’ Ad Campaign: ‘Dance As If No One Is Paying” https://t.co/ztRHO6bABA#IRespectMusic— David Poe (@poedavid) July 9, 2019Similar to the way many people bite into a cheeseburger with no consideration for the cow and farm of its origin, campaigns like Spotify’s widens the growing divide between listeners and creators. Audiences intellectually understand that music doesn’t magically materialize out of nothingness for the exclusive purpose of entertaining them, but as music continues its irreversible transition to all things digital, listeners are becoming less aware and interested in how artists create, record, produce, and share music. With a 2017 Nielsen Music report showing that, on average, Americans now spend over 32 hours a week listening to music, it’s clear that music is hugely important in the lives of listeners — just not in ways that provide meaningful visibility and support to musicians.Spotify’s newest ad campaign and the general philosophy adopted by most other major music streaming platforms communicates the message to audiences that they can have it all: Guilt-free, uninhibited access to unfathomably vast amounts of music for little or no cost. Musicians are pushed far into the background of this offer.Spotify’s recent ad campaign has angered many, but between the flood of new music being shared over the platform and its status as the world’s leading paid subscription service, the company has little incentive to change the tune of its messaging anytime soon.center_img ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15 Reps for Spotify did not immediately respond to Variety’s requests for comment.last_img read more

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Punjabi by Nature

first_imgPhulkari is  the popular embroidery technique of Punjab and  also a happy blend of colours and culture. Mela Phulkari aims at reviving this art and will bring in a fresh whiff of all pretty and popular things from Punjab. Like colourful pakhis (hand fans), madanis (butter churner) tilla jutis (footwear), Manja (village cots), parandis (the festive hair accessory) and textiles and embroideries.The mela will also feature the sounds of  traditional musical instruments like sarangi, nagada, dilruba and dhad as well. The show will exhibit over 150-year-old phulkaris, some of which belongs to the brand, while a few that have been borrowed from the personal collections of royal families for public viewing. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Harinder Singh, the Creative Head of 1469 said,  ‘From agriculture to the handmade, from the interiors of a Punjabi household to the bylanes of the glorious city, and from the literary to the musical traditions, all objects on display will give an insight into the rich Punjabi heritage’.‘Phulkari Mela is not a profit-making extravaganza. It’s a cause that will touch the chords of people in the city. Phulkari is a metaphor not just as a textile on which the women of Punjab embroider their dreams and their lives but a leitmotif that represents the complex web with which the crafts and culture of the land are enmeshed. The fest is free for all, after all Punjabis are known for their largesse,’ Pande shared.When: 11-24 AprilWhere: Open Pal Court, India Habitat Centrelast_img read more

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Jamaican fraud probe reveals links to politicians

first_img Think Tank analyzes the second round of Democratic debates What, if anything, he got for such largess is unclear, but the court finding is feeding demands for campaign finance reforms in Jamaica, where, as in many countries across the Caribbean and Latin America, political parties have no obligation to declare any funding sources or campaign expenditures. Taxpayers have no clue if huge sums are being donated by criminals or by special interests seeking favors or influence.“This affair emphasizes the need for urgent reform of the law relating to the financing of political parties,” said Lloyd Barnett, chairman of advocacy group Citizens Action For Free and Fair Elections, one of several associations pushing for legislation that would require public disclosure reports, impose contribution and spending limits and ban donations from unregistered investment schemes like that of Smith.A Florida court last year sentenced Smith to 30 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to 23 counts of wire fraud and money laundering. He was earlier sentenced to 6 1/2 years in the Turks and Caicos Islands, where his assets were frozen.Starting in early 2005, Smith built his Olint investment club by offering interest rates as high as 100 percent a year, allegedly by pooling money from investors for currency trading. 5 ways to recognize low testosterone Meghan McCain to release audiobook on conservatism, family New high school in Mesa lets students pick career paths Sponsored Stories ___David McFadden on Twitter: http://twitter.com/dmcfadd Top Stories 5 things to look for when selecting an ophthalmologistcenter_img More Valley freeways to be closed this weekend for improvements (Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Associated PressKINGSTON, Jamaica (AP) – David Smith was a large-living and influential figure in Jamaica before courts in two countries knocked him down as a fraud artist. He splurged on luxury cars and mansions, flew in a Learjet and sponsored concerts and athletic events. Now court documents say he also was spreading his Ponzi-scheme wealth to the country’s politicians.A confiscation order by the Turks and Caicos Islands’ Supreme Court alleges that Smith contributed nearly $9 million in tainted money to both of the island’s major parties, and to several prominent individual politicians even as he was defrauding thousands of people across the Caribbean and the United States of at least $220 million. Comments   Share   But the party’s former prime minister P.J. Patterson, has acknowledged that Smith contacted him ahead of the 2007 election and said he was “disposed to increasing what he had previously given to the party’s campaign fund.” Patterson denied an allegation in the order that he had solicited or received a $1 million gift.The Turks and Caicos order last month demanded Smith repay $20.9 million, including $9 million the court found he had donated to Jamaican politicians. Even before the allegations in the order, Jamaica’s Electoral Commission had filed a report to parliament proposing campaign finance reforms. Pressure for the measure has increased since and the country’s largest newspaper, the Jamaica Gleaner, has demanded in an editorial that politicians give the money back.Trevor Munroe, head of the watchdog group National Integrity Action Limited, said sustained advocacy must highlight the murky workings of special interests since bilked investors have stayed remarkably quiet about their losses, likely due to embarrassment.“After all, who is to say that in the last elections similar shady characters would not have been making political contributions?” Munroe said in Kingston. “The taxpayers and electorate should be aware of who is paying the piper because they well may be calling the tune.” Smith helped fund Jamaica’s athletics team at an international meet in 2007 and sponsored the popular Jazz and Blues Festival in 2008. He often traveled by private jet and helicopter, drove a Range Rover and had property in Florida and Jamaica as well as a $2 million house in the Turks and Caicos. But instead of investing the money in trades, he used it to pay off redemption requests from other investors and funneled money into his personal bank account.In March 2006, the government’s Financial Services Commission raided his Kingston offices and barred it from operating in the country, prompting Smith to move to the Turks and Caicos, another Caribbean nation.But Jamaican politicians continued to take his campaign contributions even as he battled, ultimately in vain, to overturn the government order.The opposition Jamaica Labor Party has acknowledged that Smith was a contributor but could not confirm if he gave $5 million, as the Turks and Caicos order states. The party’s former information minister, Daryl Vaz, acknowledged receiving $50,000 from Smith for his campaign in Portland parish ahead of the 2007 general elections.The order also alleges Smith gave more than $2 million to the ruling People’s National Party, which says it has no record of that. 5 treatments for adult scoliosislast_img read more

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