More Government Data Released Publicly

first_imgNew data collections on air quality, confirmed flu cases and post-secondary scholarships are among the new data sets being released to Nova Scotians today, Nov. 6, through the government’s open data portal. “We are committed to increasing the number of user-friendly government datasets available through the open data portal,” said Internal Services Minister Patricia Arab. “The data can be used by Nova Scotians for personal and professional research, as well as to improve business opportunities and innovations.” Among the 27 new data collections are: The Government of Nova Scotia has regularly published non-sensitive data collections for public use since February 2016. Nova Scotians can go to the open data portal to access data in formats that can be analyzed, manipulated and shared. The portal has received more than 490,000 page views and almost 22,000 downloads since it was first launched. There are currently 460 datasets available. The website is data.novascotia.ca. air quality measurements from various provincial locations confirmed flu cases people boarding flights at Halifax Stanfield Airport African-Nova Scotian post-secondary scholarships pre-primary programs across the province various fisheries and aquaculture licences. last_img read more

Lenders extend Jet Airways sale deadline by a week to August 10

first_imgMumbai: The lenders to the defunct Jet Airways Saturday decided to extend the deadline for submitting expression of interest by a week to August 10. Late last month, the resolution professional Ashish Chhawchharia had floated EoIs for selling stake in the airline that stopped flying mid-April. Today was the deadline putting in the EoIs and have so far received preliminary interest from four parties. “On the basis of the requests received from credible interested resolution applicants for some additional time, the deadline for submission of EoI is been provisionally extended by a week to August 10,” the lenders said in a regulatory filing. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalThe extension is to ensure the objectives of the IBC are achieved and also to maximise the value of assets of the debtor, it said. “The revised deadline for submission stands at 4 pm, August 10,” it added. Earlier this week, the lead banker to the airline State Bank of India had approved a Rs 10 crore interim funding and other banks are also in the process of approving the same. This was after the NCLT had on July 23 asked the RP to discuss the salary concerns with the lenders. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostThe tribunal said even if 100 percent cannot be paid to the employees a portion of the salary has to keeping the human interest in mind. The lenders, who own the airline since March 25 with 51 percent stake, had on June 17 sent the airline, which stopped flying on April 17, to the NCLT as they could not get a buyer. As of July 4, the RP had received claims worth over Rs 25,500 crore, including over Rs 200 crore from founder Naresh Goyal, submitted by the holding company of the airline JetAir, but was rejected. State Bank has made a claim of Rs 1,644 crore, including cash credit inclusive of interest, term loans and bank guarantees, followed by Yes Bank with a claim of Rs 1,084 crore, PNB at Rs 963 crore and IDBI Bank at Rs 594 crore.last_img read more

CoucheTard hasnt given up hope of selling cannabis in Western Canada CEO

first_imgMONTREAL – Alimentation Couche-Tard Inc. hasn’t given up hope of selling cannabis as some Western Canadian provinces turn to the private sector for over-the-counter sales, the convenience store operator’s CEO said Tuesday.Brian Hannasch said the large convenience store chain, which operates as Circle K outside Quebec, has a proven track record of selling age-restricted products like cigarettes and beer.“We welcome the opportunity to work with one of the provinces here in Canada to demonstrate we can be a good partner in the space,” he said during a conference call about its second-quarter results.“And we are open to other formats that in the near term meet the concerns of these regulators.”While most provinces plan to sell marijuana in government-owned stores, Alberta, British Columbia and Manitoba are looking at partnering with the private sector.Hannasch told analysts that he anticipates more markets around the world opening to cannabis sales.His comments came in response to an analyst’s questions after he discussed Couche-Tard’s strong quarterly results.The Quebec-based retailer’s earnings surged 35 per cent to a record US$435.3 million in its latest quarter as the CST Brands acquisition more than offset the negative impact of hurricanes in the U.S. south.The company, which reports in U.S. dollars, said it earned 76 cents per diluted share in the second quarter of its fiscal year, up from 57 cents or $321.5 million a year earlier.He said the strong performance was realized despite challenges from hurricane Harvey in Texas and hurricane Irma in the southeast United States.“At one point we had over 1,300 of our stores closed during the storms, including every store at one time in our Florida market,” he said.No employees were injured but the company took a $4.8-million financial hit from the loss of sales, incremental expenses to replace inventories and cleaning up costs.Excluding one-time charges, Couche-Tard (TSX:ATD.B) earned $458 million or 80 cents per share for the three months ended Oct. 15. That compared to $328 million or 58 cents per share in the prior year.Analysts expected Couche-Tard would report 71 cents per share in adjusted profits, according to analyst Derek Dley of Canaccord Genuity.“This was notably impressive as the company was unfavourably impacted by numerous store closures related to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma during the quarter,” he wrote in a report.Revenues were $12.1 billion, up 44 per cent from $8.44 billion in the second quarter of fiscal 2017.Hannasch said the company took a hit that likely equalled more than one per cent of sales because of distribution problems in Quebec following the acquisitions of Esso and Ultramar.“We underestimated the impact of adding both these networks to our Quebec distribution centre and we had significant supply disruptions.”Hannasch said the U.S. industry faces challenges as shoppers, particularly low-income consumers, reduce the number of automobile trips that spawn convenience store sales.“Despite an eight-year bull run in the stock market, real wage growth in much of our geographies have been fairly anaemic,” he said.In Canada, Couche-Tard faces minimum wage increases in Ontario and Alberta that is forcing it to become more efficient and reduce costs, in part, through the use of new technology, said chief financial officer Claude Tessier.Couche-Tard’s shares hit a 52-week high of C$66.53 in early Tuesday trading but closed up just 49 cents to C$64.75.last_img read more

Top 20 Global Concert Tours from Pollstar

The Top 20 Global Concert Tours ranks artists by average box office gross per city and includes the average ticket price for shows Worldwide. The list is based on data provided to the trade publication Pollstar by concert promoters and venue managers. Week of July 31, 2019:TOP 20 GLOBAL CONCERT TOURS1. BTS; $12,386,483; $121.57.2. Spice Girls; $9,750,671; $112.13.3. Ed Sheeran; $6,088,526; $84.21.4. Paul McCartney; $4,330,870; $157.40.5. Pink; $3,049,565; $145.22.6. Dead & Company; $2,725,223; $88.69.7. Ariana Grande; $1,967,915; $119.92.8. Cher; $1,464,791; $114.58.9. André Rieu; $1,462,385; $91.65.10. Michael Bublé; $1,426,383; $124.52.11. Rod Stewart; $1,406,386; $106.97.12. Bob Seger & The Silver Bullet Band; $1,274,383; $103.46.13. Elton John; $1,249,084; $116.75.14. Hugh Jackman; $1,208,115; $91.64.15. Backstreet Boys; $1,113,285; $82.70.16. Shawn Mendes; $1,002,843; $70.68.17. New Kids On The Block; $941,735; $80.39.18. Kenny Chesney; $904,984; $90.60.19. Twenty One Pilots; $820,699; $59.28.20. Hootie & The Blowfish; $809,014; $62.32.For free upcoming tour information, go to www.pollstar.com___The Associated Press read more

Mens Basketball No 14 Ohio State takes on No 3 Purdue in

Ohio State redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop (33) guards a Hoosier in the first half against Indiana on Jan. 30 in the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorNo. 14 Ohio State (20-5, 11-1 Big Ten) will face No. 3 Purdue (23-2, 12-0 Big Ten) in its biggest road game of the season so far at 8:30 p.m. Wednesday night in Mackey Arena.The Boilermakers are currently leading the conference, one spot ahead of Ohio State, with an unblemished 12-0 Big Ten record. A Purdue win would give the Boilermakers a two-game lead over the Buckeyes in the conference, while an Ohio State win would put the Buckeyes in a tie for first with the tie-breaking head-to-head matchup giving Ohio State the leg up.  The Boilermakers have won their past 19 games and are coming off a win in which they held off Rutgers for a 78-76 road win. The Buckeyes most recently defeated Illinois at home, 75-67.Projected Starters for PurdueC — Isaac Haas — Senior, 7-foot-2, 290 lbs., 14.5 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.3 apg F — Vincent Edwards — Senior, 6-foot-8, 225 lbs., 15.5 ppg, 7.8 rpg, 3.1 apgG — Dakota Mathias — Senior, 6-foot-4, 200 lbs., 12.4 ppg, 3.8 rpg, 4.4 apgG — Carsen Edwards — Sophomore, 6-foot-1, 200 lbs., 16.6 ppg, 3.7 rpg, 3.0 apgG — P.J. Thompson — Senior, 5-foot-10, 185 lbs., 8.6 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 2.0 apgProjected Starters for Ohio StateF — Kaleb Wesson — Freshman, 6-foot-9, 275 lbs., 11.3 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.1 apg F — Keita Bates-Diop — Redshirt junior, 6-foot-7, 235 lbs., 20.2 ppg 8.9 rpg, 1.7 apgF— Andre Wesson — Sophomore, 6-foot-6, 220 lbs., 2.2 ppg, 1.8 rpg, 1.0 apgF — Jae’Sean Tate — Senior, 6-foot-4, 230 lbs., 12.8 ppg, 6.0 rpg, 2.8 apgG — C.J. Jackson — Junior, 6-foot-1, 175 lbs., 12.8 ppg, 4.1 rpg, 4.3 apgPurdue leads the Big Ten in both scoring offense, averaging 84 points per game, and 3-point field goals made, averaging 10 per game. The Buckeyes rank sixth in the league in 3-point defense.Purdue presents a challenge to the Buckeyes defensively because of its size and the combination of both the long-range and interior offensive threats from all five starters.“They have a lot of size down low. They’re a very smart team, veteran team,” senior forward Jae’Sean Tate said. “I like their team composure. I don’t think there’s a lot of teams like that, the way they show how together they are. [Wednesday] we’re going to have to be smart about the shot selection we take and driving in with such length in the post.”But senior center Isaac Haas is one player in particular who will be difficult for the Buckeyes to defend because of his size. In the past four games, the 7-foot-2 Haas averaged 19.3 points and six rebounds per game, while shooting 60 percent from the field. Redshirt junior forward Keita Bates-Diop said it will require a team effort to attempt to defend him.Another challenge for the Buckeyes is the road environment at Purdue. Ohio State is facing a tough Big Ten road environment for one of the first times this season, with a lot at stake.“I’m anxious to see how we perform in a very hostile environment against an elite team,” Holtmann said. “Anxious to see what we can take from that good and bad. There will be a lot of good in stuff and then a lot that we will have to continue to work on.”Holtmann compared the game preparation to the challenge of when the Buckeyes faced then-No. 1 Michigan State in December. There are some key differences, but the Buckeyes are now preparing for a battle as an underdog against a potential national championship contender.“It’s been a while since we were the underdogs and I think that’s a good thing for us. I actually enjoy being the underdog,” Tate said. “It’s been so long and we kind of got used to it. We are motivated and excited for the opportunity.”Kam Williams will not travel with teamOhio State head coach Chris Holtmann said Tuesday redshirt senior guard Kam Williams will not travel with the team to West Lafayette, Indiana, but will have his status re-evaluated Thursday. Sophomore forward Andre Wesson started in place of Williams against Illinois. “[Williams has] got class he needs to attend to tomorrow,” Holtmann said. “So he’ll be here in Columbus, finishing up work. He’s got a project and going to class.”Holtmann added he believes Williams has “accepted responsibility” and that the team expects him return to the starting lineup in “short order.” read more

IAMGOLD announces 100 million cost reduction program

first_imgIAMGOLD has initiated a program to reduce annualised spending by $100 million.   This will be achieved through cost-cutting initiatives aimed at reducing mine operating costs, exploration expenditures and mine site and corporate general and administrative costs. The company ended 2012 with over $1 billion in cash and gold bullion.“We have a long track record of generating attractive returns on capital employed,” said President and CEO, Steve Letwin. “The need for a robust return on capital is not a new concept at IAMGOLD, and we continue to approve only projects that will generate a return surpassing our risk adjusted cost of capital. Our recent share price performance is unacceptable. We are determined to intensify our return on capital and improve our operating performance. In this period of lower gold prices and rising costs we have launched an aggressive cost reduction program to remove $100 million from our 2013 plan.”While improving operating efficiency and containing costs are on-going priorities, the company has targeted cost reductions across all aspects of its global operations. These cost reductions will counter the cost pressure from inflation and an increasing amount of hard rock at Essakane and Rosebel. The higher proportion of hard rock at these operations increases the demand for power to grind and crush the ore.Letwin added, “Our assault on costs will continue until we have exhausted all possible opportunities to reduce spending. Our management team is fully focused on meeting this goal and intends to report on our progress as we move forward.”last_img read more

Chicago Blackhawks celebrate Stanley Cup with WWE title

first_img Now Playing Up Next Courtesy of WWE.com:Chicago Blackhawks celebrate Stanley Cup win with WWE World Heavyweight ChampionshipWith their third Stanley Cup in six seasons, the Chicago Blackhawks have entered into dynasty territory. To help the ‘Hawks celebrate the 13th Cup in franchise history — matching 13-time World Champion Triple H — WWE sent them a special gift: a custom WWE World Heavyweight Championship.Three days after clinching the Stanley Cup in Chicago for the first time in 77 years with a 2-0 win over the Hulk Hogan supported Tampa Bay Lightning, Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and the ‘Hawks celebrated with the Windy City faithful down Michigan Ave. before heading inside Soldier Field for a rally.Before the rally, Conn Smythe winner — aka playoff MVP — Duncan Keith, captain Toews, defenseman Brent Seabrook and forward Patrick Sharp thanked Vince McMahon for the title and added it to their trophy collection.Seabrook particularly loved the WWE gold, and according to the Blackhawk’s Twitter, it wasn’t just during the photoshoot: “…The belt was kind of his baby.”Recommended videosPowered by AnyClipIs WWE Losing Its Audience?Video Player is loading.Play VideoPauseUnmuteDuration 0:29/Current Time 0:04Loaded: 100.00%0:04Remaining Time -0:25 FullscreenUp NextThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Replay the list Vince Mcmahon Videos Articles Pinterest WWE celebrates five years of the WWE Network, Gargano vs. Cesaro on Smackdown Facebook WhatsApp Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Now Playing Up Next Vince McMahon Sends Supportive Message To Roman Reigns Wrestling Fans Mourn The Loss Of WWE Legend Mean Gene Okerlundcenter_img WWE Smackdown Results – 4/9/19 (WrestleMania 35 fallout, Kingston celebrates victory) Jason Namako RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Videos Articles WWE Rescheduling San Jose NXT Is WWE Losing Its Audience? Seth Rollins Defends WWE On Two Separate Occasions Now Playing Up Next Ring of Honor announces Pacific Northwest debut with two events this June Google+ Triple H Twitterlast_img read more


Kali Uchis To Allie X 10 Stand Out Female Acts At Lollpalooza

first_img Email Twitter Facebook Kali Uchis To Allie X: 10 Stand Out Female Acts At Lollpalooza 2018 News 10 Standout Female Acts At Lollapalooza kali-uchis-allie-x-10-stand-out-female-acts-lollpalooza-2018 Take a look at just a few of the female acts you missed this weekend in Chicago if you weren’t able to make it to LollaJacklyn KrolGRAMMYs Aug 7, 2018 – 9:54 am With a four-day lineup as sprawling as they come, Lollapalooza 2018 had something for everybody. Let’s take a look at 10 notable female acts who delivered memorable sets at Chicago’s Grant Park.The Regrettes Not only performers, but fans of music The Regrettes took time to play and catch other artists; sets at the festival, even tweeting about Brockhampton’s set. The band took to Twitter once again to get fan’s input on their setlist for both their after show and Lollapalooza set. Plus, The Regrettes have style and edge. Their set brought the punk back to Lollapalooza, complimented by their cohesive look: matching Bulls jerseys!Camila CabelloCurrently performing as support to Taylor Swift’s reputation stadium tour, Camila Cabello took to social media to express that she still gets nervous about fan turnout at festivals. They showed up in numbers with the crowd stacking blocks long. Cabello’s set contained most of her debut album Camila. She kicked off her set with “Never Be The Same” and proved her pop prowess with her choreography while simultaneously keeping her vocals near perfection.Daya GRAMMY winner Daya hit the Lollpalooza stage to perform songs from her forthcoming album. The crowd was so massive for her set, it extended to the stage across the way. Daya also made a special guest appearance, singing “Feel Good” and performing the remix of her GRAMMY-winning song “Don’t Let Me Down” during Illenium’s set to end an epic Lollapalooza.Kali Uchis GRAMMY nominee Kali Uchis hit the stage right as the afternoon sun started to heat up the park. Uchis donned fringe pants and, on top of her dancing, found the energy to belt out her hits. A stand out moment came during “Gotta Get Up,” which festival-goers rejoiced, and online live streamers commented on with much adoration.Grace WeberGrace Weber is a hidden gem that deserves to be heard. She brought out special guest Nico Segal on the BMI stage and even took time out of her day to create some art on-site at the festival.Allie XA self-taught writer, producer and performer, Allie X is taking the world by storm with her brand of alternative-pop. Her Lolla set list included songs she’s been releasing monthly from her upcoming album, Super Sunset.Bebe RexhaWith roots in not only pop music but country, electronic, and rap, Bebe Rexha is beyond a triple threat when it comes to music. Rexha’s Lollapalooza set fit all of her hits along with her new tunes. She also took the time to not only meet fans but bring a lucky one on stage. Rexha later expressed that it was her “best show yet”.Terror JrPairing stunning visuals with enormous energy, Terror Jr took over the Bud Light stage, and their after show sold out with fans still eagerly waiting in line to purchase tickets. Frontwoman Lisa Terror punctuated the set by bringing out-of-this-world vocals from Bop City.Pale WavesFuture stars-in-the-making, Pale Waves bring pop-rock to a whole new level. The band toured as support for The 1975 prior to their festival set to a beyond-thrilled crowd. The quartet bend genres and have a special ability to pull people into their music.Larkin PoeThis bluesy rock sisters-duo impressed more than a handful of passers-by during their set. Larkin Poe’s Lollpalaooza takeover was kicked off by an after party supporting Tyler Childers the night before to a sold-out crowd.Catching Up On Music News Powered By The Recording Academy Just Got Easier. Have A Google Home Device? “Talk To GRAMMYs”Read morelast_img read more

Sweetheart Lake dam project moves closer to permit

first_imgFederal regulators are seeking public feedback on Juneau’s new hydroelectric dam project that aims to provide additional electrical reliability to meet the city’s growing electric demand.The Juneau Empire reports that members of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission arrived in Juneau Wednesday to hear public feedback on the Sweetheart Lake Hydroelectric Project draft environmental statement. Three people provided testimony during the meetings, including Mayor Mary Becker. All spoke in favor of the proposed dam.The project includes a 111-foot-tall concrete dam with overland and undersea cables connecting a powerhouse to existing power transmission lines.Alaska Electric Light and Power has previously raised several concerns with the project, including its effect on rates and whether Juneau’s electrical grid can support a new dam.The public comment period ends Dec. 29.last_img read more

Alaska News Nightly Wednesday Feb 13 2019

first_imgStories are posted on the APRN news page. You can subscribe to APRN’s newsfeeds via email, podcast and RSS. Follow us on Facebook at alaskapublic.org and on Twitter @AKPublicNews Governor Dunleavy unveils budget proposalAndrew Kitchenman, KTOO – JuneauGovernor Mike Dunleavy’s proposed budget revealed today would slash spending across many state funded programs. Public schools, the university, Medicaid and the ferry system are among the areas that would be hardest hit.Gov. Dunleavy faces political, legal obstacles to enacting far-reaching budget cutsNathaniel Herz, Alaska’s Energy Desk – AnchorageGovernor Dunleavy’s power to reduce Alaska’s budget only goes so far – there are legal and political obstacles that stand between the governor and his goal of a balanced budget.‘Devastating’ and ‘significant’: Educators react to Dunleavy’s budget proposalWesley Early, Alaska Public Media – AnchorageEducation leaders are deeply worried about how the cuts will affect schools.GOP House members propose plan to move bills without permanent speakerCasey Grove, Alaska Public Media – AnchorageA group of House Republicans has proposed limiting the rules to allow the House to operate until it has a permanent speaker. Normally, bills are heard first in committee and then advance to a floor vote.Interior political giant Jack Coghill dies at 93Tim Ellis, KUAC – FairbanksFormer state lawmaker Jack Coghill died this morning at the age of 93.Signal detected from missing Guardian Flight planeJacob Resneck, CoastAlaska – JuneauSearchers have detected an underwater beacon from the Guardian Flight air ambulance that vanished en route to the Southeast community of Kake, the company said in a statement Tuesday.Armed alleged thief shot and killed by Fairbanks policeDan Bross, KUAC – FairbanksFairbanks Police shot a violent crime suspect to death along the Elliot Highway yesterday afternoon.So far, seals are adapting to shrinking sea iceJohanna Eurich, KYUK – AnchorageIce seals thought to be most affected by the disappearance of arctic sea ice seem to be doing well, according to data presented at the Alaska Marine Science Symposium last week.Unexpected end-of-race storm hampers remaining Yukon Quest mushersLex Treinen, KUAC – FairbanksA winter storm hit Yukon Quest mushers heading to the finish line in Fairbanks yesterday. Several teams had to take refuge at checkpoints on either side of Eagle Summit.last_img read more


3 killed 8 injured in suicide blast at a Pakistani hospital

first_imgDera Ismail Khan: At least three people were killed and eight others sustained injuries in a suicide blast at a public hospital in the Dera Ismail Khan district of Pakistan’s Khyber Pakhtunkhwa province on Sunday morning. Radio Pakistan reported local police as saying that the suicide bomber blew himself up when a rescue vehicle carrying dead bodies of police constables was entering the trauma centre of the hospital. Further details are awaited. Earlier in the day, two police constables were killed after being shot at by unknown assailants at a security check post in the Kotla Saidan area.last_img read more

Visa lifeline for IT US H1B premium visa processing is back on

first_imgUS Citizenship and Immigration ServicesReutersAfter almost six months, there comes some relief for Indian techies who want to fly to the US on work visas. The US has resumed fast processing of H-1B work visas in all categories subject to Congress-mandated limit, Mint reported.Earlier, the US administration temporarily suspended visa issuance to handle the huge rush of applications for the work visas which are popular among Indian IT professionals.Back in June, US Labour Secretary Alexander Acosta called for increasing minimum salaries of foreign workers on H-1B visas from the existing $60,000 to at least $80,000.”Congress has not updated that $60,000 threshold over time. If Congress were to update that simply for inflation, it would bring it up to well over $80,000, and many, if not most of the situations like you have identified would be eliminated because they would be below that $60,000 threshold,” Acosta told members of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Labour, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies.The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) resumed premium processing on Monday for all H-1B visa petitions subject to the fiscal year 2018 cap of 65,000, Mint reported, quoting a media release.Premium processing has also been resumed for the annual 20,000 additional petitions which are set aside to hire workers with US higher educational degrees, the USCIS release said.After Donald Trump came to power as president of the United States, his narratives like ‘Buy American, Hire American’ have led to a decline in the number of Indians entering the US. The number of Indians in the US who are currently searching for jobs in India has surged 10 times between December 2016 and March 2017, according to research firm Deloitte.The technology companies depend on H-1B visas to hire tens of thousands of employees each year. Employees work at their desks inside IT company Tech Mahindra office building in Noida in the outskirts of New Delhi March 18, 2013.Reuters fileIndian IT companies like HCL, Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Cognizant, Wipro and Infosys send thousands of workers to the US every year, mostly due to low labour costs. This crackdown has led to an uncertain future for engineers working in the US and potential aspirants hoping to make it to that country.While visiting India, last month, Cisco Executive Chairman John Chambers said taking people from India to the US on work visas to take advantage of lower labour arbitrage may be a mistake.”You can’t go in and take a whole bunch of H-1B visas and displace American workers for a lower cost. That is just a mistake. The jobs which are being created have to be created in both countries. It is not a win-lose (situation); both the countries can have dramatic job creation by working together,” Chambers said.”Premium processing remains temporarily suspended for all other H-1B petitions, such as extensions of stay,” the USCIS said, adding that it plans to resume premium processing for all other remaining H-1B petitions not subject to the fiscal 2018 cap, as agency workloads permit.H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows US companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations that require theoretical or technical expertise.last_img read more


Trump at White House with Obama

first_imgUS president-elect Donald Trump(C)is greeted by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama(L) as he arrives at the White House in Washington, DC 20 January, 2017. Photo: AFPUS president-elect Donald Trump arrived at the White House Friday for his final meeting with outgoing leader Barack Obama, before heading to the Capitol for his swearing-in ceremony.Obama and First Lady Michelle greeted the Republican billionaire leader-in-waiting and his wife Melania on the steps of the presidential mansion.“Mr President-elect, how are you?” Obama asked.The two couples headed inside for traditional tea and coffee with their vice presidents and congressional leaders—but not before a mini-commotion caused by an unexpected gift from the incoming first lady to her predecessor.After a hesitant embrace, Melania presented Michelle with a large box from the high-end jeweler Tiffany’s—located next door to Trump Tower in New York—in the store’s iconic blue tone, which complemented her own outfit.An awkward sequence ensued, with the world looking on, as Michelle spun around, seemingly perplexed about where to place the surprise gift while the four posed for a photograph.Neither of the Marines standing guard beside them were authorized by protocol to break their salute to hold the box, and the snafu was only resolved when Obama himself ducked back inside the White House to spirit away the gift—whose contents remain a mystery for now.last_img read more


Desperate relatives hunt for Colombia mudslide survivors

first_imgAerial view of the extensive damage caused by mudslides as a result of heavy rains, in Mocoa, Putumayo department, Colombia. Photo: AFPRescuers clawed through mud and timber Monday searching for survivors of a mudslide in southern Colombia that killed 262 people, including 43 children, and left relatives desperately seeking loved ones.Survivors told of scrambling onto roofs or hanging onto trees as a sea of mud, boulders and debris engulfed the village of Mocoa late Friday.Some watched as their children and relatives were swept helplessly away.Among them was Ercy Lopez, 39, who was left hanging to a tree after the deluge tore away her home.Lying on a mattress in a shelter for survivors, she said people were still searching for her 22-year-old daughter Diana Vanesa.“The hopes of finding her alive are slim now,” she said.Debris was everywhere in the remote Amazon town: buried cars, uprooted trees, children’s toys and odd shoes sticking up out of the mud.Survivors gathered at the local hospital and at the cemetery to search for family members and friends.People, houses swept awayThe National Disaster Risk Management Unit raised the death toll to 262 on Monday. Colombia’s President Juan Manuel Santos earlier said that at least 43 children were among the dead.“I regret to announce that the number of dead continues to rise,” Santos said.The Red Cross counted a further 262 people injured and 220 missing.Desperate relatives continued to search for missing children.Yulieth Rosero had just buried her sister, but was holding out hope of finding her seven-year-old nephew, Juan David Rueda.“I found his little brother, William. He’s alive. He’s in shock, injured and has no clothes, but he’s OK,” said Rosero, 23.Santos has flown into the disaster zone for three straight days to oversee the relief effort. He declared an economic emergency Monday to free up relief funds, amplifying the public health and safety emergency he had already declared.Hundreds of rescuers were working at the scene of the disaster, using mechanical diggers in the search.Locals said it was never safe to live so close to the three rivers that overflowed after days of torrential rain.Wilson Chilito, 22, said he scrambled onto the roof of a house from where he watched “people, fridges and houses” being swept away.He lost his sister, mother-in-law and at least two other relatives.“This was foreseen for a long time,” he told AFP as he packed up belongings from his home, his boots full of mud.Founded in 1563, “the town has about 10 rivers running through it,” said Mocoa’s Mayor Jose Antonio Castro, quoted by newspaper El Espectador.“That means it is not a place where a town should be located.”Vomiting mudCarlos Acosta survived by clinging to a tree branch.“I was dying due to a lack of air—so what did I do? I stuck my finger in my mouth and vomited a lot of mud,” Acosta, 25, told AFP.“I sneezed out mud until I could breathe again.”He could not save his three-year-old son, Camilo, however.The two were swept away together. But Acosta was knocked unconscious, and when he woke up the child was gone.Residents began burying their loved ones as the identified bodies were returned.A mass funeral was held at a local cemetery, where workers toiled to dig enough holes for the piles of coffins.Spate of floodsSantos said the mudslide destroyed a local aqueduct and knocked out power to much of the surrounding department.He said four emergency water treatment plants would be set up to avoid epidemics of diseases such as cholera.Most of the hardest-hit neighborhoods in the town of 40,000 are poor and populated with people uprooted during Colombia’s five-decade-long civil war.The Pacific northwest of South America has been hit hard by recent floods and mudslides, with scores killed in Peru and Ecuador.Colombia’s worst ever disaster was a volcanic eruption in 1985 that triggered a landslide and destroyed the city of Armero, killing 25,000 people.last_img read more


Climate Change Runaway Development Worsen Houston Floods

first_imgStacy ThreattHighway 288 at Southmore Blvd. the morning of May 26, 2015.HOUSTON (AP) — With clay soil and tabletop-flat terrain, Houston has endured flooding for generations.Now the nation’s fourth-largest city is being overwhelmed with more frequent and more destructive floods. The latest calamity occurred April 18, killing eight people and causing tens of millions of dollars in damage.Climatologists say extreme downpours have doubled in frequency over the past three decades in part because of global warming. The other main culprit is unrestrained development in the only major U.S. city without zoning rules. That combination means more pavement and deeper floodwaters.Critics also blame cozy relations between developers and local leaders for inadequate flood protection.Since 1998, the Federal Emergency Management Agency has paid more than $3 billion in today’s dollars for flood losses in metropolitan Houston.Related: Houston Will Get More Heavy Downpours Because Of Climate Change Say Scientists Sharelast_img read more


Agape Embassy Ministries hosts Annual Community Fair

first_imgAgape Embassy Ministries, 5775 Barclays Dr., Suite 7, is scheduled to host their annual community fair on Sept. 23 from noon – 4 p.m. The fair will feature food, music, rides and games for the Kingstowne community. The event is free and open to all ages.last_img


Road safety workshop to be held

first_imgKolkata: The Howrah City Police is organising a workshop on traffic safety for drivers and helpers of commercial vehicles.The workshop is going to be held at Sarat Sadan where drivers and helpers of buses, taxis and even totos will be involved.They will be going through different video footages and they would pick up lessons on road safety. A senior police officer said drivers and helpers are considered to be first respondents when an accident takes place. So, during the workshop they would also learn what to do on an immediate basis to rescue people.last_img read more


Negotiating in the worlds happiest country

first_imgSee also: 4 things you need to know before investing in a local startupSomehow they forgot to teach us this in school. One of the single most important skills we will ever need, negotiation is not only for business people: It can become handy when trying to squeeze a discount from your mechanic, compromising on chores with your partner, and convincing an industry leader to be your mentor. However, as with any relational skill, it is heavily dependent on culture. We don’t negotiate the same way in Latin America as they do in Asia, the United States or Europe. Through my work as a consultant, I have had the opportunity to witness how little idiosyncrasies turn negotiation into more of an art than a science. Here are a few tips for negotiation survival in “the happiest place on Earth.”1. Expect extremes.Old-school negotiation is still the king in Latin America. What does that mean? It is customary to open negotiations with extreme offers with the hope of meeting in the middle, sometimes even in spite of external facts like market price or valuations. If you are not used to it, you might find some proposals outrageous, but hang in there: It’s usually just a starting point so that haggling can commence.The problem with the “meet in the middle” logic is that it puts too much emphasis on the price, potentially turning the whole exercise into a tug-of-war or even offending one of the parties. What you can do is acknowledge that although many negotiations take place between extremes, you suggest using impartial or external criteria to come to a figure on which to base your discussions.2. You’ll be dealing with hot-blooded people.Let’s face it; we as Latin Americans are more prone to being swayed by emotions than the rest of the planet. From the corner-shop attendant to the general manager of a big company, I’ve seen many (good) deals fall through simply because somebody loses his or her head for five minutes.Our emotional nature can certainly bring a lot of positives to the table, such as enthusiasm and friendliness, but be aware of the other side of the coin: Make sure Dr. Jekyll doesn’t turn into Mr. Hyde. If you find yourself or the other party becoming more agitated than you all would like, suggest taking a break to gather your thoughts and let things cool down. Also, try to build up on the positives – the shared views or agreements you have already identified – to lighten the mood.3. Power and status plays out differently here.Although the nature of success in Latin America has started to change in recent years, we still don’t have many overnight successes in the business world, or hundreds of average Joes who started with nothing and built empires. Wealth usually comes from families; that ties social distinction to money and in turn, to power. This makes our societies more vertical than in some other parts of the world.This inevitably affects how people negotiate. The power that a party assumes he or she has on the basis of status can spiral out of proportion here, making a horizontal discussion tougher to achieve.New generations are perhaps more irreverent now and are willing to challenge the pecking order a bit more, but this doesn’t always go down well with powerful people, especially older folks, who might not think twice before inviting you to leave. In short: Be aware that the straight talk and sauciness that might work well in other parts of the world could well be frowned upon here.4. Invest in the relationship before the deal.Just as in many parts of Asia, including China, Latin Americans are more oriented toward building a relationship before a deal takes place. Whereas in more direct cultures like the United States or some northern European countries the focus might be on the content of the negotiation (what’s being said), our culture places more attention to the context (the how, who and when). This means that it might take a while, sometimes several meetings, before you can get down to business. Rushing this “natural” process might be perceived as rude, so be willing to slow down a little. We are also known for getting personal, asking about family and personal life. This might not be well received in other cultures, but it is a way to establish trust.There are without a doubt many subtleties that make or break negotiations, especially cross-cultural ones. In future posts I will be getting into more detail on how to become more successful at it, which, as with any other skill, is a matter of practice. In the meantime, if you are interested in the subject, feel free to drop me a line.Read other “Doing Business” columns here.Randall Trejos works as a business developer, helping startups and medium-sized companies grow. He’s the co-director of the Founder Institute in Costa Rica and a strategy consultant at Grupo Impulso. You can follow his blog La Catapulta or contact him through LinkedIn. Stay tuned for the next edition of his new Tico Times column “Doing Business.” Facebook Comments Related posts:4 things you need to know before investing in a local startup The different flavors of starting a business Want to launch an app startup in Costa Rica? Read this first Beyond the carrot and the stick: persuasion hacks that get resultslast_img read more


The dream of a community called La Carpio

first_imgOn Tuesday, March 21, the first phase of construction of La Carpio’s new primary school was officially inaugurated by President Luis Guillermo Solís, First Lady Mercedes Peñas, Education Minister Sonia Marta Mora (read more here). The new three-story building required a $6.4 million investment and will serve 1,735 elementary school students and 400 preschool students.In 1993, people from rural areas of Costa Rica and abroad, especially from our northern brother country of Nicaragua, migrated to settle down on a property belonging to the Social Security System, or Caja (CCSS) in the district of Uruca in the province in San José. Two years after that, some residents started to worry about reserving a piece of land so that their children could study. With few resources, they began work on a humble building for their boys and girls.That’s how a transcendental decision was made that would change the course of thousands of lives: a decision to fight for a small school. What the old school in La Carpio looked like before construction began. Courtesy of Marielos Méndez A scene from the old school. Courtesy of Marielos MéndezThat simple building, which featured a few classrooms made out of wood and cans, became a place of learning. Soon there were so many children coming in that there was no room for them all. The teachers at that time had to adapt to the precarious conditions that merged with the arid landscape of the location. Classes were given in churches or in the hallways of neighbors’ houses. Little by little, the process was shaped into what became hte Escuela Finca La Caja.The name Escuela Finca La Caja, for a long time, was emblematic of the community’s longing for learning. Through these classrooms various generations of La Carpio’s sons and daughters have marched, most of them managing – with the help of God, their families and teachers– to move on and be good, productive people. The school under construction. Courtesy of Marielos Méndez The children in charge of carrying a school crest, which reads: “Kindergarten La Carpio”. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Kindergarten students pose for the camara. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesDespite the economic contributions from the Public Education Ministry (MEP), through which improvements have been made to three impoverished buildings at three locations in the community, these became more and more inadequate over time to respond to a student population of more than 1,600.For all these years, the school, because of limited space, has had its student attend in three shifts of only 3.5 hours each. This short school day placed its students at a disadvantage compared to the rest of the country’s institutions. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times A teacher guiding her kindergarten students. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesIt’s important to point out that throughout all this, La Carpio witnessed years of violence between gangs, generated in large part by how difficult it was for its young population to access education and thereby a dignified job. This intensified efforts by education authorities to put into action the right to an obligatory and free education, established by the Costa Rican Constitution.It was more than 20 years of waiting, of battling, of requests and paperwork, until an administration came along that decided to look back at a community forgotten by previous governments, that decides to listen to the voice of a group that has knocked on many institutions’ doors. That’s how the government decided to join the effort, creating links between the MEP and the Ministry of Housing (MIVAH), the Mixed Institute for Social Aid (IMAS), the Municipality of San José, and many other institutions that look for a solution that responded to the educational needs of the children of La Carpio. A girl from elmentary school wears a bow with the colors of the Costa Rican flag. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Happy children at their new school. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesFinally, yesterday, the administration of President Luis Guillermo Solís Rivera delivered a grandiose achievement, one that the citizens and educators decided to Escuela La Carpio. This educational institution will allow its students to develop their intellectual, athletic, cultural, and technological potential, being an inclusive school were everyone has the opportunities to learn in conditions of equality. Where all students have the chance to achieve their goals.The construction of these buildings will allow the children of La Carpio to study in comfort, in enjoyable spaces and with technology. They’ll have the necessary tools to deal with personal, educational and professional challenges of the future, given that this is a community of working people that, with great effort, contribute daily to the country’s development. Students from one of SIFAIS’s music ensembles performed at the inauguration. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Kindergarten students paying attention at the speech. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times A kindergarten student poses for the camara. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesThis new building represents the hopes of a citizenry that believes in education as a motor for development, for human growth. We believe in education as the way in which our girls and boys will build their present with effort and enthusiasm, and look to the future with hopes of a better tomorrow.Education is a source of development; it’s an essential tool to achieve the transformation of societies, and La Carpio has not been the exception. President Luis Guillermo Solís. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times A kindergarten student poses for the camara. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesThe implementation of the Education Ministry’s Programs of Different Modalities in the community has been indispensable to improve the living conditions of its inhabitants, which shows that a country’s wealth lies its children and youth. Investing in education inevitably moves us toward the construction of a better future for all citizens. Kindergarten students pose for the camara. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Kindergarten students pose for the camara. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico Times Joyful children enjoying the inauguration. Elizabeth Lang / The Tico TimesThe author of this piece has worked as a teacher of Special Education at La Carpio’s Escuela Finca la Caja since 2001. She works with primary school students who have cognitive disabilities as well as coordinating with regular teachers and families to enable successful educational inclusion. During her 18 years of working with the community, she has experienced La Carpio’s evolution through education.   Facebook Comments Related posts:PHOTOS: La Carpio opens new school, 23 years in the making In this holiday season, finding ways to make a difference Costa Rica top ‘out-performer’ in 2016 Social Progress Index World Cup 2018: Two Costa Rican fans travel to La Sele’s rival countriescenter_img PHOTOS: La Carpio opens new school, 23 years in the makinglast_img read more