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It is time to reboot Canadas tax and benefit system

Canada has a rich history of innovation, but in the next few decades, powerful technological forces will transform the global economy. Large multinational companies have jumped out to a headstart in the race to succeed, and Canada runs the risk of falling behind. At stake is nothing less than our prosperity and economic well-being. The Financial Post set out explore what is needed for businesses to flourish and grow. You can find all of our coverage here.It is time to reboot Canada’s tax and benefit system: it discourages work effort; it is not equipped for looming demographic challenges; and it is not ready for the changing nature of work brought on by the “fourth industrial revolution” and artificial intelligence (AI). Most importantly, if this “revolution” increases inequality and people do not perceive they are getting value for their tax dollar, such as access to suitable benefits when they need them, then any ensuing rise in inequality is likely to create greater societal tensions.Let’s take each in turn.As you earn more, you work more. Right? Well, up to a point. Work effort is determined by a number of factors, including ability to control hours of work, job satisfaction, benefits, location, whether other family members are working, availability of child care, minimum wages and so on.It also critically depends on income taxes and other payroll and social security charges.Income taxes affect the net take home pay so will impact the decision on how much to work. Currently high income workers in Canada face very high marginal tax rates — over 50 per cent. This means that for each additional dollar earned, workers take home less than 50 cents. This not only discourages work effort, it encourages workers, especially the highly skilled, to seek jobs in lower tax jurisdictions. In other words, outside the country.It is not just high-income earners who are affected, however: even though low earners pay lower taxes, the complex interaction between taxes, income and benefits can create “welfare walls” that also discourage work effort. Innovation Nation: How to boost adoption of AI — ethically Innovation Nation: Why CEOs support basic income Read the full Innovation Nation series here Against this background, it is well known that Canada, along with other advanced economies, faces slowing population growth. In this context, policies — even if well intended — should minimize disincentives to work more.To be sure, these are all long-standing issues that can require difficult trade-offs. But there are two new reasons for a renewed focus: the gig economy and AI.The gig economy is characterized by short-term contracts or freelance work — so-called “gigs,” as opposed to permanent jobs. While contract work is not new, platforms such as Uber, Fiverr and Freelancer allow even far-flung workers to fulfill advertised gigs. Nor does gig work apply only to low-skilled, repetitive jobs.For gig workers outside the country, employers are typically not responsible for either taxes or other social security charges — which can tilt hiring decisions in their favour. Conversely, local gig workers may not be eligible for standard domestic benefits such as paid vacation, additional sickness and pension benefits and so on.Interwoven with the gig economy is the rise of AI. Together, they may profoundly change the nature of work, including the displacement of workers — or greater job-to-job changes over a working lifetime, inter-spaced with periods of unemployment or training.As it stands, our tax and benefit system is not set up for this. We need to take a step back and reboot the system so that it is suitable for the future of work.First, as discussed in Automation and the Future of Work: Scenarios and Policy Options, a paper released by the Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI), the longer gaps between employment brought on by the gig economy and AI will require governments to have better and different social safety nets. This could include exploring a universal basic income with a view to completely overhaul the current system.As CIGI President Rohinton P. Medhora writes in Rethinking Policy in a Digital World, benefits also need to become person-centred, versus job-centred.Second, if automation displaces labour, income and payroll tax revenue will also decrease. However, governments still need to recoup these costs, and as a result a large share of taxes will need to be collected elsewhere. This might include a greater shift towards indirect taxes, as well as greater taxation of “negative externalities” such as pollution. But layering in new taxes will not be enough: the tax system will need a complete redesign.Third, gig employment and entrepreneurship are closely related. One way to ensure that the gig economy maximizes societal benefit is to boost entrepreneurial skills — such creativity and problem solving — so that workers in gig jobs are equipped for success. This will require a re-think of our education and training systems.This will not be an easy undertaking, but delaying these changes will only make a situation that is not sustainable even worse and potentially create greater societal tensions.Bob Fay is the director of CIGI’s Global Economy Program. read more

Annual Escarpment clean up event

In time for Earth Day tomorrow, hundreds of volunteers were out to do their part to clean-up the environment.The annual escarpment project is the largest of its kind in Canada.Volunteers put on their boots and gloves, ready to pick up trash and debris along waterfalls, stairs and trails in the Hamilton area.The Spring clean up event first started at the Devil’s Punch Bowl in 2011 with just a hundred people.Its founder, Greg Lenko says he anticipated about a thousand people to come out today.The city provides volunteers with garbage bags and supplies are provided by sponsors of the project.During the first year the event took place, they finished with an overflowing dumpster and ten pickup trucks full of garbage. read more

In phone call Ban and Kenyan President discuss governments decision to close

In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban expressed deep appreciation to President Kenyatta and the people of Kenya for decades of generous hospitality to significant populations of asylum-seekers and refugees. “The Secretary-General assured President Kenyatta that he appreciated the enormous task and responsibility involved in hosting large numbers of refugees, amidst daunting security challenges,” the statement said, noting that Mr. Ban also urged the President to continue to use the 2013 Tripartite Agreement, signed with Somalia and the Office of the UN high Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), as a basis for the voluntary return of Somali refugees in safety and dignity. Mr. Ban in the statement went on to express the United Nations support to Kenya, including the proposal by the High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, that a high-level bilateral review on the refugee situation in Kenya be conducted by the Government of Kenya and UNHCR.In the phone call, the Secretary-General mentioned that the Deputy Secretary-General and the High Commissioner for Refugees would visit Kenya at the end of May. “They look forward to discussing this issue forward with the Government of Kenya, and will underline the readiness of the United Nations to garner the support of the international community in addressing Kenya’s refugee challenges, with consideration for the host communities in Kenya as well as the sub-regional security concerns, the statement concluded.On 6 May, Kenya’s Ministry of Interior said that the Government had disbanded its Department of Refugee Affairs and was working on a mechanism for the closure of the country’s refugee camps – a decision that could affect as many as 600,000 people, according to UNHCR. read more

UN chief calls for far greater support for Cyclone Idai response

Secondary flooding risk threatens areas inlandIn Buzi, south-west of Beira, some of the flood levels are starting to recede, “but there is still risk of secondary floods and the situation may still worsen,” the OCHA spokesperson said. “Many people from Buzi have been relocated through search and rescue to other areas but for those that remain, we need to get them by any means possible.”Hervé Verhoosel from the World Food Programme (WFP) underlined the critical need for funding from countries and concerned individuals.“Now that the world is beginning to grasp the scale of devastation and despair in the wake of Cyclone Idai, we as an international community are at a crucial moment to act,” he said.“WFP and partners have been rushing to assist tens of thousands who have lost everything, but as the immense scale of the damage is becoming clearer the numbers of people in need are rapidly increasing, and more must be done. The World Food Programme needs urgent financial support from governments and individuals to reach hundreds of thousands with immediate life-saving assistance.” Quoting her, UNICEF spokesperson Christophe Boulierac in Geneva said that “the situation on the ground remains critical and there is no electricity or running water. Hundreds of thousands of children need immediate help. The priority right now is to give them shelter, food, water, education, protection.”As the destructive scale of Idai unfolds – and with vast areas under water and search and rescue missions ongoing – the UN has appealed for urgent assistance from the international community at a “crucial moment” in the humanitarian response.For Mozambique alone, the World Food Programme (WFP) is seeking more than $121 million to help 1.7 million people affected through the next three months.Hundreds of families in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe have lost everything because of #CycloneIdai.The @UN is on the ground providing life-saving assistance. But you can help too ➡️ https://t.co/WWHiqsZB8C pic.twitter.com/ivwBfpt6OS— UN Humanitarian (@UNOCHA) March 21, 2019 Describing how we was “deeply saddened by the loss of life and heart-wrenching images of human suffering” in Mozambique, Malawi and Zimbabwe, António Guterres also praised rescue teams “who have been working around the clock to save thousands of lives” in desperately challenging conditions.“These heroes have not only rescued families off roofs, but are also delivering food, water purification tablets and other life-saving humanitarian assistance to survivors after communities have literally been washed away,” Mr. Guterres said in a statement.“What is needed now are funds to support the response in the days, weeks and months to come,” he insisted, noting that although the UN has already released $20 million from its emergency fund, “far greater international support is needed.”Echoing the UN chief’s comments, UN Children’s Fund Executive Director Henrietta Fore confirmed that the situation for survivors of Idai remains “desperate.”The UNICEF chief made her comments while visiting Mozambique, which was worst-hit by the flooding and devastation caused by 150 kilometre-per-hour winds. Improvised camps house thousands in desperate conditions“Right now, we are seeing thousands of people congregating in informal, improvised camps. Many of these informal camps are in desperate conditions,” said UNICEF’s Christophe Boulierac.While the search for survivors continues, field assessments have indicated the devastating scale of the immediate and long-term needs.In Mozambique, 11,400 houses have been completely destroyed and crop losses are extensive, according to OCHA. At least 385,000 hectares of crops have been damaged, “which will impact food security in the months ahead” spokesperson Jens Laerke warned.In the Mozambican port of Beira – the epicentre of the crisis – the situation remains critical, Mr. Laerke continued, with “destruction to schools…destruction to houses of worship, destruction to factories. The city is still without power, food prices have reportedly tripled with long queues forming for staples such as for bread and for fuel.” Tragic toll set to rise with many areas still inundatedThe official death toll in Mozambique has risen to at least 242 people, “but many areas remain inundated and tragically, the counting of the dead will take some time,” said UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) spokesperson Jens Laerke.“So, we do expect the death toll to rise as that progresses.”In Zimbabwe, authorities have reported 139 deaths and 189 people missing following flooding and the cyclone, while more than 4,300 people have been displaced.Malawi was impacted far less by the cyclone than by flooding that began on 5 March, which has nonetheless affected up to 920,000 people.Helicopters and boats crucial to humanitarian and rescue effort.According to OCHA, 11 helicopters from the UN and other nations are involved in operations, and more are on the way.Thirty boats are also involved in the humanitarian effort, funded by WFP.In worst-hit Mozambique, according to OCHA, at least 65,000 people are sheltering in more than 100 temporary sites across the provinces of Sofala (73), Manica (18), Zambezia (10) and Tete (4). Most people have found refuge in schools and churches.Food, safe drinking water and shelter are also urgently needed. read more

Body recovered in Humber Estuary seven weeks after the disappearance of Libby

A body has been recovered from the Humber Estuary nearly seven weeks after 21-year-old student Libby Squire went missing.The University of Hull student was last seen in the early hours of February 1 at the junction of Haworth Street and Beverley Road.A significant investigation was launched into her disappearance, with officers searching nearby playing fields and waterways.Police said that it is too early for any identification or even to confirm the gender of the individual.A Humberside Police said: “A body has been recovered from the Humber Estuary this afternoon, (Wednesday, 20 March), in close proximity to Grimsby Docks.“At this stage it is too early for any identification or confirmation of gender to be made.“Further information will be released as soon as we are in a position that we are able to do so.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Harry Winks Tottenham must learn from Barcelona defeat

first_imgTottenham Hotspur have suffered defeats in both Champions League encounters this season, with the second loss arriving last night on home soil to Barcelona.The Blaugrana have stormed through the Wembley Stadium, sweeping the Spurs aside with a commanding 4-2 victory. Although the London outfit were outclassed by La Liga holders, some of the players in the home squad managed to exceed expectations.Harry Winks, the talented 22-year-old midfielder, who was thrust into starting role following Mousa Dembele’s injury showed glimpses of his immense potential.Incase you missed it during the game now take another look at this wonderful interception from Harry Winks.A player that grew into that second half for Spurs and showed again that capability to play on the world’s biggest stage.[@COYS_Com]#THFC #COYSpic.twitter.com/g2JPtRZ7MM— Last Word On Spurs🎙 (@LastWordOnSpurs) October 3, 2018David Villa, SpainQuiz: How much do you know about David Villa? Boro Tanchev – September 14, 2019 Time to test your knowledge about Spanish legendary forward David Villa.In the post-match interview, the former England U21 international urged his teammates to learn a valuable lesson and implement that knowledge against PSV after the international break.The British publication, Inside Football, transcribed Winks’ words after the game.“We gave everything, especially in the second half,” he explained.“We started with doing the simple things, battling, fighting, showing heart, we created chances and scored twice. On any other day, it could have gone either way and we could have come away with the three points.“At one point I said to Coco [Erik Lamela] ‘one more chance here and we’ve got it’ and then at 3-3, it would be anyone’s game.“But then they get that opportunity to score and it’s so late, it kills you…a real kick in the teeth.“It’s something we have to learn from and hopefully we’ll go into the next couple of games, take that experience and win.”last_img read more

Man assaulted at dispensary in Chula Vista

first_img Posted: June 30, 2019 KUSI Newsroom CHULA VISTA (KUSI) – A man was hospitalized with a gash to the head after an argument about ”free marijuana” erupted at a dispensary today, police said.Police arrested two people on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon outside of the business on the 900 block of Broadway at 2:18 p.m. Sunday, Lt. John English of the Chula Vista Police Department said.The unidentified victim went to the store to ask about an offer of ”free marijuana” he received from the business as a text message. Workers told him he had to buy something in the store to receive the free offer. An argument broke out between the man and store worker. As the would-be customer stepped out the door, a store security guard ”smacked the victim in the back of the head,” according to English. The weapon may have been a pipe, he said.Two others ran out of the store and continued to assault the victim, who was bleeding profusely from his head. After police arrived, the victim was taken to the hospital and two people were arrested.The business was shut down by police, who continued their search for the security guard wanted in the assault. KUSI Newsroom, Man assaulted at dispensary in Chula Vista June 30, 2019 Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

WSUV grad pushes hard for an education

first_img 906 total graduates.760 bachelor’s candidates.133 master’s candidates.13 doctoral candidates.• What: WSU Vancouver graduation. Covered, outdoor venue; umbrellas are not allowed. Concessions will be available. Accommodations for deaf and hearing-impaired guests will be available. Golf cart and wheelchair service will be provided to guests who need assistance.• When: 1 p.m. Saturday. Parking and gates open at 11 a.m.; seating opens at 11:30 a.m.• Where: Sleep Country Amphitheater, 17200 N.E. Delfel Road, Ridgefield.• Cost: Free, public event. No tickets required.• Information: WSUV commencementBecki Roggenkamp knew something was wrong with her toddler. He couldn’t carry a two-way conversation, and he made up words for objects. He was at the age to enter preschool, but he couldn’t sing a nursery rhyme or say his ABCs.“Specialists told me: ‘Brace yourself. He probably will never learn how to read or write,’” Roggenkamp said.They said Tanner Roggenkamp should plan to attend trade school and work as a manual laborer.“Thank goodness I was young and naive,” Becki Roggenkamp said. “My only thought was, ‘Well, what do we do about it?’”Instead of accepting that prognosis, she found help for her son.The La Center man is graduating from Washington State University Vancouver on Saturday with a bachelor of arts degree in human development.“It’s been a journey,” Becki Roggenkamp said. “Everything that came easily to others, he had to work twice as hard. I’m so proud of him.”Their pediatrician recommended that her son be tested at the Hearing and Speech Institute in Portland. The preschooler had a severe language delay called auditory processing disorder. Simply put, his ears and brain don’t work well together, so he can’t process information he hears the same way other people do.“It never really put me in a depressed state,” Tanner Roggenkamp said. “It just made me want to push hard and prove others wrong.” Tanner Roggenkamp, left, listens during a human development class at WSUV. Doctors and teachers said Roggenkamp probably would never learn how to read or write. He proved them wrong. He’s graduating Saturday from WSU Vancouver.last_img read more

Air stagnation advisory in effect across metroarea

first_imgVancouver — The National Weather Service in Portland on Monday announced an air stagnation advisory that includes much of Clark County.The advisory will be in effect from this evening to Friday afternoon, according to the weather service.Dominant high pressure and minimal winds will lead to stagnant air and deteriorating air quality later this week, forecasters said. The pattern will allow pollutants to accumulate in the air, which can cause adverse effects for some people.The Southwest Clean Air Agency, which monitors air quality in the area, had not yet announced a burn ban Monday.last_img read more

Work Ramped Up On New Houston Ship Channel Bridge

first_img– / 7The biggest public works project in Harris County history is stuck in the mud — and that’s a good thing.The Houston Chronicle reports crews are tying steel and drilling deep into the mud along the Houston Ship Channel — among the first steps of significant work to replace the bridge carrying the Sam Houston Tollway across the ship channel.When finished in the middle of the next decade, the bridge project will give drivers twice as many lanes, four in each direction, along with shoulders and a more gradual climb than the steep grade that anyone driving behind a heavy truck knows can be slow-going.“It’s one of the county’s great needs,” Commissioner Jack Morman said during a recent, soggy tour of the site where crews are planning for the massive foundations.Work started along the ship channel’s shoreline in April but has ramped up recently as crews assembled the massive cranes that commuters will see for the new few years.At roughly $1 billion, paid for via toll revenues, it is also county government’s most expensive single project in history. Morman said approving the expensive contract didn’t give him any concern, however.“It kind of put things in perspective, but no, I wasn’t worried,” he said, noting the explosive growth of the region and the need to make the tollway four lanes in each direction throughout Harris County.About 60,000 vehicles cross the bridge daily. With a huge jump in truck traffic and commuters, officials expect that number to swell to 158,000 vehicles a day by 2035.The project launches with a long list of superlatives and a slight change from early descriptions. Plans call for replacing the Ship Channel Bridge with two one-way bridges of four lanes each. The twin spans will be side-by-side and connected at key points, such as at the two massive towers that hold all of the cables related to the cable-stay design.The towers will be among the tallest structures in the region, slightly taller than downtown’s Market Square Tower and slightly shorter than the Penzoil Place twin skyscrapers. The distance between the main towers, 1,320 feet, will make the bridges the sixth-longest main spans in the nation and second-longest in Texas, behind the new Harbor Bridge in Corpus Christi set to open in 2020.Ship Channel Constructors, a joint venture of Traylor Bros. and Zachry Construction Corp., won the $962 million construction job. The cable-stay spans were designed by the Dallas office of Figg Bridge Group.Per terms of the contract with Harris County Toll Road Authority, or HCTRA, the companies declined to comment and referred questions to the toll road authority.Officials settled early on cable-stay, which features two large towers securely anchored to hold up the roadway, which is fused together and tied in places to the cables. The towers bear all the weight.The Harbor Bridge construction, which Harris County officials recently toured, is also cable-stayed. Figg was also the lead designer on that bridge, which like the Ship Channel replacement must cross a vast and active economic corridor.“For something with a span this long, it really is cost-wise the most effective,” said Steve Hague, project manager for the Ship Channel Bridge replacement with HNTB, which the county hired to oversee construction.Like suspension bridges such as the Golden Gate Bridge in California, cable-stay bridges have a distinctive design and become major parts of the skyline around them.For Harris County, the aesthetic was an add-on, and there are plans to light the towers. But the primary goal was to have four lanes and shoulders for safety.“We definitely want function over form,” Morman said on a recent visit to the construction area.The two massive towers, forming what appears to be a double-X pattern, will dwarf the nearby plants and pipelines. East of Houston’s business district, the only thing taller — and by less than 55 feet — will be the San Jacinto Monument.In Houston, the bridges will be built separately, starting with the southbound span. That bridge will be completed and traffic moved onto it, so crews can then demolish the existing bridge and build the northbound span.When both are finished in 2024 or 2025, the tollway will be four lanes in each direction with 10-foot shoulders on each side, giving drivers two more lanes and some much-needed breathing room on the sides.“Thank you, Jesus,” Beth Harper, 60, said when told about the shoulders. “It’s terrifying, when there is a truck anywhere near you, to be on that bridge.”In many respects, the spans are a bigger and, officials say, better version of the Fred Hartman Bridge on Texas 146, another cable-stay bridge with two towering columns that carries traffic across the ship channel.The new project goes through one of the most active shipping lanes in the country. It also crosses 106 pipelines, some carrying chemicals so dastardly that specifics were not shared with toll road officials by federal homeland security authorities.Only two pipelines needed to be relocated because of the work.Add to that the fact toll road officials cannot simply shut down the tollway, and the new bridges are shaping to be one of the most complex construction projects ever considered in the Houston area.Yet construction is not expected to significantly slow down drivers.“It is going to take us about a year to get out of the ground,” said John Tyler, the toll road authority’s deputy director and head of its engineering operations.Despite the road and towers cutting an imposing figure along the ship channel, nearly half the concrete for the project will lie underground.To secure the towers in the swampy mud along the ship channel, crews will use 97 concrete shafts poured into the ground, 48 for the southern foundation and 49 for the northern foundation. Just as someone would dig a hole for a fencepost and let the ground do the work of securing the post and keeping it steady, the towers must be solidly grounded.That’s the job of the shafts, some embedded as far as 240 feet into the earth, that will lie beneath a 20-foot-tall concrete pedestal. It is from those that the towers will be constructed out of hollow concrete.“If it was solid, it’d weigh too much,” Tyler said.The project still has plenty of weight, notably in the roadway. The tollway approaching and across the bridge will be made of sections, allowing crews to put the pieces together. Think of it like a giant Lego set made of concrete, held together by wires.The segments, nearly 82 feet wide and 16 feet tall, are nine feet, three inches wide. Building from the two towers, crews will work their way farther from the towers, placing on segment on one side of the tower and then moving to the other side.“You will do one on one side and two on the other,” Tyler said.As they move away from the towers, there will be a total of 584 segments, with 128 of those connected to the wires and then locked to the others. There are eight segments until the next cable is placed.The segments weigh 125 tons each and will be pre-cast at the construction site. Because the pieces must fit and match exactly, connecting pieces will be cast together.The companies have leased vacant land adjacent to the job site where they will stack bridge sections until they are ready for use.Once the southbound bridge is up and ready for traffic in about four years, crews will shift vehicles to the new bridge — divided with two lanes in each direction — and demolish the existing bridge, built in 1982.“Really, in bridge age, it is a teenager,” Tyler said, explaining that officials decided for a total replacement as opposed to building a companion bridge because the current span is simply too narrow for four lanes with shoulders for safety.The current bridge will come down just as the new ones are going up — piece by piece. The bridge, once the longest box-girder bridge in the Western Hemisphere, will be sliced into pieces at the joints where it is built and removed, starting at the points furthest from the pillars supporting it.Crews will then work toward the pillars and eventually remove them.Building the bridges and tearing the current one down is hard enough, but crews will be doing it over one of the busiest shipping lanes in the country.“I don’t think switching the traffic (to the new bridge) is near as complex as the channel,” said lead engineer Mike Perez, senior staff engineer for HCTRA.At points when work is directly above the channel, regulations require ship traffic to cease. For businesses, that could disrupt operations, and make timing critical.Toll authority officials, the contractors, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Port of Houston and Houston Pilots Association are all involved in discussions.“We have been working with the pilots and port for four years,” Tyler said. “We learned a lot about shipping.”The various stakeholders agreed to limit closings to two, three-hour closings during the daytime, with a five-hour gap between closings, during every 24-hour period. At night, crews can close the channel for nine hours, with a 48-hour period between closures.The contract with Ship Channel Constructors allows for 42 closings for the southbound bridge, 42 closings for the northbound bridge and 33 for demolition of the existing bridge. The company has incentives to reduce the closings, with extra money available for every closing they can eliminate, down to 21 on each bridge.Any closings in addition to those allotted cost the company money.Morman said though complex, the new bridges are a huge boost for business around the ship channel and eastern Harris County.“It is huge for the port,” he said. “The extra capacity is coming as we know it is in demand. It seems like every year is a record year for the port.”The new bridge also helps keep traffic moving at highway speeds, eliminating a tight curve south of the bridge and reducing the steep 5 percent grade on both sides of the bridge that slow-climbing trucks and many cars.Perez said the new bridges will have a 3 percent grade on the south side and a 4 percent grade on the north, which while not sounding like much, helps keep highway speeds constant.Though the biggest single project for the county, the project cost is covered by toll revenues from the system and not taxpayer funds. County commissioners, acting as the executives of the toll road authority, approved the project.“This is a great example of how well a toll system is designed to work,” Morman said. “We would not be able to do projects like this if we had to wait on tax money.”?Though toll reliance by various local and state officials has rankled some drivers, Harris County’s system remains one of the most financially healthy in the nation. The agency collected $774 million in toll revenue during its fiscal year that ended Feb. 28, 2017, a 2 percent increase over the previous year. As of last year, the agency had $1.32 billion not committed to any of its outstanding debt.The $1.50 toll on the Ship Channel Bridge has not increased since the county toll authority took control from the defunct Texas Turnpike Authority in 1994. During other rate increases in 2007 and 2013, officials declined to increase the bridge price, saying it was already higher than others around the system.Morman said he does not expect a rate hike due to this construction project, a welcome sign to some drivers.“I feel like I’ve paid plenty,” said Fred Miller, 56, who commutes via carpool across the bridge five days a week to his job at a chemical company. “Seems to me after close to 20 years, I’ve done my part. . But it’ll be nice to have a new bridge.”Miller’s mood dampened when he learned he’d have to wait years.“Well, shucks, by then I hope I’m retired,” he said of a 2024 opening day. “I’ll come back to visit it, tell my grandkids ‘I paid for that.’”___Information from: Houston Chronicle, http://www.houstonchronicle.com Sharelast_img read more

Analysis Dont Count Your Democratic Chickens until Theyre Elected

first_imgRick Mach via The Texas TribuneSan Antonio voters could provide an insurance seat in the Texas Senate for Republicans, who are at some risk of losing an incumbent or two in the 2018 elections.The GOP has a 20-11 advantage in the state Senate, if you count the chair left empty by the disgraced Carlos Uresti as a Democratic one. They’ll have a majority no matter what; they hope to have at least 19 votes — the number needed to bring legislation up for debate when the other party isn’t cooperating. Uresti resigned this year after he was convicted on multiple counts of fraud and money-laundering by a federal jury in San Antonio.Eight candidates vied for his seat Tuesday in a special election that is headed for a runoff this year. And getting a Republican candidate into that runoff — in a seat conventionally considered a Democratic one — could buy Republicans some room in a year when other seats are at risk.It would be an upset, to be sure, but the numbers aren’t as forbidding as you might expect.Democrats will be down a seat, temporarily, at the beginning of the regular legislative session in January. Because of state Sen. Sylvia Garcia’s decision not to officially resign until early that month, there’s a possibility her spot won’t be filled until after the start of the session. If a November election decides it (Gov. Greg Abbott hasn’t set a date for the special election), that Houston-based district would have a senator when the Legislature convenes on Jan. 8, 2019; if it’s later, or if a runoff is needed, it won’t.That will be a footnote in this drama: The real danger is to the Republican supermajority now in place.Democrats are hoping to overtake one or more of three state senators who are arguably in districts that Democratic candidates could win: Konni Burton of Colleyville, Don Huffines of Dallas and Joan Huffman of Houston.Burton’s Senate District 10 is the closest thing to a swing district on the current Senate map. Burton won it four years ago with 52.8 percent of the vote in a year when the average statewide Republican was getting 54 percent, according to state election data. Burton’s results were similar to Greg Abbott’s in that district, which had previously been held by Democrat Wendy Davis — Abbott’s 2014 opponent. Two years later, Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton there by 0.6 percentage points; the average statewide Republican that year got just 50.9 percent of the vote in SD-10. This year, Burton faces Democrat Beverly Powell in the general election.Huffines is up for re-election in a year in which his twin brother, Phillip, lost a bruising, negative and expensive primary race against Angela Paxton for a neighboring Senate seat in Dallas and Collin counties. That’s strike one. Strike two is that Dallas has steadily become bluer in each election cycle and is the epicenter of Democratic efforts to add seats to their Texas House delegation; half a dozen seats now held by Republicans are on the minority party’s target list. SD-16 leans more toward the GOP than Burton’s district, however, Trump lost to Clinton by more than 4 percentage points there. Huffines will face Democrat Nathan Johnson in November.Huffman is a bit lower on the alert list. Republican statewide candidates got 61.9 percent of the vote in Senate District 17 in 2014 and 53.6 percent in 2016. Trump won by 0.9 percentage points. Abbott won in 2014 by 21 percentage points. Her Democratic opponent is Rita Lucito; Lauren LaCount is the Libertarian Party nominee.The Republicans have fewer opportunities, or did, until Uresti resigned.Only three Democratic Senate incumbents are on the ballot in 2018, and all three — Kirk Watson of Austin, Royce West of Dallas and John Whitmire of Houston — are in safe Democratic districts.Garcia’s seat will be open, but it would take a miracle to get a Republican candidate into office from her district.The Uresti slot, however, opens a possibility if the GOP is lucky this year. The special election was held Tuesday, resulting in a runoff that will probably take place sometime in mid-to-late October.This has been Democratic territory for ages, but take a look at the numbers. Clinton beat Trump easily — by almost 12 percentage points. But Abbott beat Davis by a nose (0.1 percentage points) in 2014. Statewide Democratic candidates, on average, got 48.2 percent of the vote in 2014 and 51 percent of the vote in 2016.That — along with the rock-throwing and back-stabbing among the Democrats in the special election — is why Texas officeholders from Abbott to U.S. Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz to Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick all jumped in to endorse Pete Flores, a Republican running in that eight-candidate pack. Flores ran against Uresti in 2016 and lost badly, with just 40.4 percent of the votes.Still there’s no risk to the Republican hotshots in supporting him. Special elections, with their small turnouts, sometimes produce unexpected results. And with the Republican supermajority in the Senate in play, the upside for Republicans in the next legislative session could be huge. Sharelast_img read more

Riders beware Govt to crack down on use of auxiliary LED lights

first_imgKolkata: The state government will initiate a drive to check installation of auxiliary LED lights in motorbikes. Fines would also be imposed if someone is caught using the same.Use of auxiliary LED lights on motorbikes leads to visibility problems for a rider/driver approaching from the opposite direction, as the latter get blinded due to the overtly bright illumination of the same.The issue has been raised by MLAs in the state Assembly on Wednesday. While giving a reply in this connection, Suvendu Adhikari, the state Transport minister, said it is not permissible to install additional LED lights on motorbikes. Such lights are installed after registration of the two-wheelers. Steps would be taken to check the same. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that the state Transport department had taken stringent measures against the use of LED lights and loud speakers in auto-rickshaws. With steps taken against the same, the use of the same in auto-rickshaws has almost stopped. Hardly any auto-rickshaw are found now, in which LED lights and loudspeakers are still installed.It may be mentioned that the state Transport department has already made driving licence mandatory to buy a motorbike. The step has been taken to check road accidents as it was found that many of the accident victims didn’t have driving licence. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIt may be mentioned that there is a section of youth who install additional LED lights on their motorbikes and they undertake the same only after registration of the vehicles. It may be mentioned that there are provisions of slapping fine against the use of additional LED lights as per the Motor Vehicles Act. The Transport department will also be urging police to take necessary steps against the same.The state Transport department has also undertaken a special drive from July 23 to 31 to check the condition of vehicles and in some cases it was found that wires of speedgovernors were disconnected by drivers to flout the permissible speed limit.last_img read more

Summer fiesta at DLF Mall of India

first_imgWith the onset of the holiday season, it’s time to bring the fun and playful madness of summer camps for kids. Summer vacations are a perfect opportunity for kids to explore new dimensions, take up new hobbies and indulge in creative activities. Keeping in line with this thought, DLF Mall of India, Noida has organised Summer Fiesta, city’s biggest summer camp for kids. This one month camp which began from May 18 offers the following workshops:For the kids who are passionate about cooking, the camp would conduct Theos Junior Masterclass with culinary chef Gaurav Wadhwa Also Read – Add new books to your shelfFor theatrically inclined children, the Summer Fiesta offers Theatre workshop from veteran actor Avijit Dutt(No One Killed Jessica fame)For the techno geeks and freaks, there is an exciting Augmented Realty Workshop by Little KidzSpecial Photography classes by Amarjeet Maggu for the kids who have an eye for beauty and love capturing it on their frameCricket camp and bowling alley classes by Smaash for the fun filled experienceDance Camp for the ones who wish to rock and roll in the tunes of Jazz, Zumba and Hip hop Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveDLF PromenadeThis summer, DLF Promenade is offering a perfect destination for its young customers with its unique summer camp – Summer Fiesta. The fest will offer an exciting line-up of activities such as art and crafts, robotics, fun with science, aeromodelling, and portable planetarium shows etc for the little ones to help utilize their time at best during this summer break.To make this initiative more exciting, the mall has collaborated with Cartoon Network and POGO to bring in the most iconic cartoon characters such as Ben 10, Powerpuff Girls, Scooby doo, Tom & Jerry over the weekends for meet & greets. DLF Place SaketPresents ‘My World My Place’, a six-week summer extravaganza. This summer school targets the children of age group 4-15 years and is scheduled from May 13 to June 25 inside the mall. The workshop has a variety of classes on art, offering the kids a global exposure.last_img read more

Back to Basics Part 6 Using the ip command in GNULinux for

first_imgBack to Basics Part 6 — Using the ip command in GNU/Linux for beginners by Mike Turcotte-McCusker on April 15, 2018 in Linux – Last Update: April 15, 2018 – 6 commentsFor years, people used the ifconfig tool to handle their command line IP / network interface related tasks.However, ifconfig is long dead, and has since been replaced with the IP tool, although it will take users some time to make the total switch, as ip is considerably more powerful than ifconfig was.This tutorial is geared to users who are not quite absolute CLI beginners, but are ready to start getting their toes wet when dealing with networking and interfaces.IP Command in LinuxGetting right into it, the first command we will look at, checks all network interfaces, and shows information related to them such as IP address: ip addr showUse the commands ip -4 a or ip -6 a to only show IPv4 or IPv6 related informationThe same command can be used, to specifically look up information related to a certain interface. In this case, using wlp1s0 (wifi adapter) as the interface: ip addr show wlp1s0Last but not least, you may also use it to show interfaces that are active: ip link ls upNetwork interfacesEnabling or disabling a network interface is also accomplished quite easily using the ip command (Note wlp1s0 is the name of the interface, and the up/down command enables or disables the interface on the device).Enabling an interface (using the same interface from previous examples): ip link set wlp1s0 upDisabling the very same interface: ip link set wlp1s0 downYou can use the IP command to set an IP address for the computer. The general command is ip a add IP/mask dev INTERFACE, e.g.: ip addr add 192.168.2.10/24 dev wlan0Or use the command to remove an IP address again by using the del command instead of add, e.g. sudo ip addr del 192.168.2.10/24 dev wlan0Other IP commandsTo check the routing tables for your system, use:  ip route showJust like with the ‘addr show’ options, we can also pinpoint routing information down to a specific IP address: ip route get  XXX.XXX.X.X #replace X with the desired IP addressLooking up network statistics is another extremely useful way to utilize the ip command, especially if you are under suspicions about packet loss occurring: ip -s linkYou can also use the following command to quickly see all available options that ip can use: ip helpLastly, but not least, you can use the manpages if you need more information, as ip can do much more powerful things than discussed here, as this was meant for beginners: man ipAnd one more resource for you, is super handy cheatsheat that RedHat have put together, for using the ip command, found here.Last wordsYour typical home user will likely never need to actually use the ip command, for any of the usual day to day tasks.However, as soon as you start delving into any form of server/sysadmin work, be it web hosting, or even just hosting a Minecraft server for you and your neighbour, you can quickly start tumbling down the networking rabbit hole; so learning the basics of ip as well as other tools like netstat or its replacement ss should be high on your priority list.SummaryArticle NameBack to Basics Part 6 — Using the ip command in GNU/Linux for beginnersDescriptionThe IP command tutorial is geared to users who are not quite absolute CLI beginners, but are ready to start getting their toes wet when dealing with networking and interfaces on GNU/Linux.Author Martin BrinkmannPublisher Ghacks Technology NewsLogo Advertisementlast_img read more

Motorcyclist killed in Nicosia updated

first_imgA 37-year-old motorcyclist was killed in Nicosia on Wednesday afternoon after colliding with a vehicle coming from the opposite direction.Police said the incident happened at around 6.10pm. The Savvas Vlahos apparently veered into the right lane of the road and crashed into the vehicle of a 52-year-old man coming from the opposite direction on the old Anthoupoli to Kokkinotrimithia road.Both drivers were injured and were rushed to Nicosia general hospital where the motorcyclist was pronounced dead while the 52-year-old was diagnosed with a fracture to his right arm and leg, police said.The 52-year-old was found with zero indication of alcohol consumption, while the motorcyclist was wearing a helmet. You May LikeLuxury SUVWhat happens to all unsold cars and SUVs?Luxury SUVUndoMoneyNing What to Do if a Friend Asks for a LoanMoneyNing UndosoEbola.comScientists Share Their Knowledge About Fish OilsoEbola.comUndo Heroes’ welcome for Israeli teens after woman detained for false rape claim (Update 2)UndoRouhani hopes British PM Johnson’s “familiarity” with Iran will help improve relationsUndoTwo of serial killer’s victims buried in PhilippinesUndoby Taboolaby Taboolalast_img read more

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Microsofts BUILD conference this week is all about developers. But how bad is crime in the Philippines, Insurance companies will be forced to seek out alternate sources of revenue. where Norman’s father is dying and assorted family members are coming to pay their last respects and squabble over everything from which son will have to take care of Mom to who gets Dad’s Rolex watch. read more

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E. possibly because they had tapped out the region’s ground water Mattingly explains Many Garamantian structures are still standing in some form or another today but very few have been visited by archaeologists It’s hard to do fieldwork in the hot dry remote Sahara Mattingly explains “And that relative absence of feet on the ground leads to an absence of evidence” about the Garamantes and other cultures that may have thrived before the Islamic conquest of the region But because many Garamantin sites haven’t been buried or otherwise destroyed they show up in stunning detail in satellite photos By analyzing such images “in an area of about 2500 square kilometers we’ve located 158 major settlements 184 cemeteries 30 square kilometers of fields plus a variety of irrigation systems” Mattingly says Not only have he and his team been able to select the most promising sites for on-the-ground fieldwork but they can also use the images to reconstruct the Garamantes’ regional footrpint—something that would have been very hard to do by excavating one site at a time Satellite images are less helpful when it comes to the Amazon rainforest where a thick canopy of vegetation blocks the view of most signs of ancient settlement So José Iriarte an archaeologist at the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom has opted for drones to search for the region’s lost civilizations When ecologists look at the Amazon they see “virgin wilderness” untouched by humans Iriarte says But thanks to the discovery of large-scale earthworks called geogylphs and terra preta—“black earth” that was purposely enriched by humans in the past—archaeologists have concluded that at least parts of the rainforest must have been home to large agricultural settlements “Now it’s time to start quantifying past human impact in different parts of the Amazon” Iriarte says Iriarte’s drone will be outfitted with LiDAR equipment to map the ground through the trees which is very helpful for revealing large geoglyphs that may be hidden beneath the canopy But the unmanned aerial vehicle will also be equipped with tools that can analyze the distribution of the plants themselves If past cultures “farmed” the rainforest by cultivating helpful crops in specific places their practices may have shaped which species grow where even today—which could change the way we think about conservation in the Amazon “The very biodiversity that we seek to safeguard may itself be a legacy of centuries or millennia of human intervention” Iriarte says “These new technologies have just opened up these regions to us” Mattingly says But time is of the essence Sites in both the Amazon and the Sahara are being built over by modern development sometimes by people who don’t understand the archaeological importance of what they are destroying Remote sensing data may be the only way to capture information about these sites before they are gone for good Checkout our full coverage of the AAAS annual meeting What message would you send into space Tell us on Twitter and Vine with #msgtospaceNew Delhi: An adult couple has a right to live together without marriage the Supreme Court said while asserting that a 20-year-old Kerala woman whose marriage had been annulled could choose whom she wanted to live with The top court held that live-in relationships were now even recognised by the legislature and they had found a place under the provisions of the Protection of Women from Domestic Violence Act 2005 The observations came while the apex court was hearing a plea filed by one Nandakumar against a Kerala High Court order annulling his marriage with Thushara on the ground that he had not attained the legal age of marriage Prohibition of Child Marriage Act states that a girl can’t marry before the age of 18 and a boy before 21 File image of Supreme Court Reuters Nandakumar who had approached the top court will turn 21 on May 30 this year The high court had also granted the custody of Thushara to her father after noting that she was not Nandakumar’s "lawfully wedded" wife A bench of justices A K Sikri and Ashok Bhushan said their marriage could not said to be "null and void" merely because Nandakumar was less than 21 years of age at the time of marriage "Appellant no 1 as well as Thushara are Hindus Such a marriage is not a void marriage under the Hindu Marriage Act 1955 and as per the provisions of section 12 which can be attracted in such a case at the most the marriage would be a voidable marriage. "It is sufficient to note that both appellant no 1 and Thushara are major Even if they were not competent to enter into wedlock (which position itself is disputed) they have the right to live together even outside wedlock" the bench said While setting aside the order of the high court granting custody of woman to her father the apex court said that "we make it clear that the freedom of choice would be of Thushara as to with whom she wants to live" It also referred to a recent case involving a woman from Kerala Hadiya where it had restored her marriage with Shafin Jahan on the ground that it was a marriage between two consenting adults The apex court had also clarified that a court cannot interfere in the marriage of two consenting adult and cannot annul the marriage in a habeas corpus (a writ requiring a person under arrest to be brought before a judge or into court for securing the person’s release) petition She also claimed that no private party is involved in the acquisition of 36 Rafale aircrafts. she was then beaten in the first round of the Qatar Open by Romanian qualifier Monica Niculescu. “The savings that Americans would gain by the elimination of private insurance premiums and deductibles are much greater than the public insurance premiums they would pay under Bernies plan, We should not go into oppression. as a rebellious act of kindness!com.

as well as Donald Trump,上海龙凤论坛Ally, Before the courts can hear the implicated person’s version, wondered whether the birds might be using these decorations as signals of another sort. Va. has big plans for Kitchen Gremlin The name and the concept is inspired by a former co-worker who was very inventive with ingredients so much so that sometimes he said he questioned whether he should eat some of those inventions but they always turned out deliciousWhat’s on the menu is kind of a secret for now though Lefort did mention a twist on a Philly cheese steak and a bagel burgerHe said he’ll also make the place kid friendly one of the few in downtown with a kids’ menu and video-game arcadeKitchen Gremlin is expected to open Sept 20 serving lunch and dinner crowds and extending to late nights on Saturdays though Lefort said the schedule will depend a lot on how hiring goesAlmost a week later the police have not yet released the name of the individual though the family has been notified The investigation into the incident is ongoing with OSHA said Benson police on Wednesday so the name isn’t being releasedThe death occurred at the 55-megawatt biomass plant that burns turkey manure mixed with wood chips to produce electricity that it supplies to Xcel Energy which plans to close the plant soon It’s a move the company said will save Xcel customers moneyThe accident occurred last Wednesday Dec 6 at about 3:15 pm Responding to the accident were the Benson Police Department Benson Ambulance Benson Fire Department and the Swift County Sheriff’s OfficeBenson Power employees directed the rescue personnel to the injured party Life-saving measures were attempted and the person was transported to Swift County Benson Health Services police said The individual did not survive the injuries from the fall and was pronounced dead after efforts to resuscitate were not successful said a police report Broadway,rayman@time. Astronomer Bob Berman and Slooh host Geoff Fox will offer commentary during the broadcast. Thank God for the safe return of our sisters. tightened its defenses? including First Lady Michelle Obama.

20-22 to keep Malaysia afloat for a while. FargoMeet your Muslim neighborsWhat: Meet your Muslim neighbors,000. marijuana will be sold only in state-run stores,if they are traveling for reasons "unrelated to the marijuana industry. the Mirror reports.Adamawa state officials have commenced the evacuation of corpses of those killed in Girei Local Government Area of the state in the Sunday gory attack on some communities by Fulani herdsmen Trump will issue two memoranda asking to review parts of the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law: the Orderly Liquidation Authority and the Financial Stability Oversight Council, “For the adults,上海夜网Neta, Jody Genessy (@DJJazzyJody) April 25, PTI BJP’s Siddharth Kuncolienkar had vacated the seat for Parrikar as he has to get elected to the Assembly within six months of becoming chief minister.

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2018 22:33:04 IST Comment 0 Tweet This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed. mislabeling, 12 inches fell in 60 minutes in Copenhagen. read more