“The humanitarian community in Haiti reiterates its opposition to forced evictions, which only exacerbate existing vulnerabilities of camp populations,” UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Haiti Nigel Fisher said.“It recalls that eviction of displaced persons without adequate housing alternatives is a violation of their rights, as outlined in the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement,” he added, noting that these principles underscore the State’s responsibility to protect the rights of those within its territory and ensure the establishment of safe and dignified conditions for sustainable returns.Since the quake struck on 12 January 2010, killing more than 200,000 people and displacing 2.3 million others, 67,162 people have been affected by evictions, with the number of camps under threat increasing 400 per cent over the past year, from 87 in July 2010 to 348 camps this July.The statement welcomed President Michel Martelly’s reaffirmation of his opposition to forced evictions and his request to municipalities to show patience and refrain from counterproductive actions.“The humanitarian community is committed to providing all necessary support to the Haitian authorities to ensure that camp closures are conducted in a manner which safeguards the rights of those affected,” Mr. Fisher said, stressing the need to plan camp closures predictably and in consultation with those affected, within the broader framework of improving access to adequate housing while also recognizing property owner’s legitimate rights.“In support of this process, the humanitarian community proposes to set up a platform that links relevant ministries, local authorities, the Haitian National Police, the private sector and the humanitarian community,” he added. “The proposed structure would allow for effective planning for progressive camp closures, while identifying alternative housing solutions in both urban and rural settings.”Earlier this month, the independent UN expert on human rights in Haiti, Michel Forst, urged that the police receive clear instructions not to support the forced eviction of people living in formal and informal camps, outside of procedures established by Haitian law, regardless of whether camps are on public or private land. 13 September 2011Voicing concern at the evictions, some of them forcible, of nearly 70,000 survivors of Haiti’s devastating 2010 earthquake from camps sheltering them, the United Nations and its partners have pledged to help the authorities plan closures so as to respect the rights of those affected.
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedTwo attacked, carjacked in separate armed robberiesDecember 16, 2017In “Crime”Taxi Driver robbed of car by female, male banditsAugust 26, 2015In “Crime”Two in custody after car stolen in Kitty found in EssequiboMay 11, 2018In “Crime” A taxi driver attached to the Kitty Cabs Taxi Service, Sheriff Street was on Sunday night attacked and robbed of his Toyota Allion motorcar on Carmichael Street, Georgetown.Ramesh Persaud, 53, of Lot 4 Triumph, East Coast Demerara (ECD) was hired by a female to take her to Carmichael Street at around 17:00hrs.This publication understands that upon arriving at the destination, the victim exited the vehicle and was attempting to assist the woman unload her bags from the car’s trunk.While Persaud was doing so, two armed men unexpectedly approached him and ordered him away from the motorcar.He reportedly complied and the two men and lone woman boarded the vehicle and made good their escape east on Middle Street, then South on Waterloo Street.The matter was reported to the Police who say they are investigating it.Of recent, many of the carjacking reports, perpetrated on taxi drivers in Georgetown, were centered around them (drivers) dropping off a female passenger to a specified location, where they are then robbed by gunmen waiting.
Aug 26th 2019, 6:03 PM Image: Shutterstock/abd Short URL Image: Shutterstock/abd 32,750 Views GARDAÍ IN MAYO have said that a missing teenager has been found safe and well.Ellen McDonagh (15) had been missing from Castlebar since yesterday.Following a public appeal earlier today, gardaí confirmed this evening that she has since been located. Missing Mayo girl located safe and well Gardaí had issued a public appeal for information on the missing 15-year-old girl. https://jrnl.ie/4783174 5 Comments Monday 26 Aug 2019, 6:03 PM By Sean Murray Share397 Tweet Email Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article
Douglas Bush A registered sex offender who poses a risk to re-offend recently became a transient in Vancouver, according to the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.Douglas Bush, 30, is described as 5 feet 9 inches tall, 175 pounds, with black hair and brown eyes. He is not wanted by police at this time.In August of 2006, Bush pleaded guilty to the rape of a child, after he sexually assaulted a 15-year-old female whom he knew.He was recently released from Airway Heights Corrections Center near Spokane and will be monitored by the Washington State Department of Corrections, the Clark County Sex Offender Registration Unit and the Vancouver Police Department Sex Offender Tracking Unit.
Alaska Attorney General Craig Richards announced a plan for a new Public Integrity Unit aimed at improving trust in government.Download AudioThe unit would focus on shootings and other cases in which law enforcement officers use force, as well as death in jails and prisons, and allegations of corruption.“Just in a post-Ferguson world, I think in general that the public side is increasingly looking to make sure that officer-involved shootings are scrutinized appropriately,” Richards said. “And we’re certainly aren’t suggesting that they aren’t now, this just ensures, with a criminal investigator, that Law has its own resources to do some independent investigation.”Richards said the administration wants the public to know there’s an independent unit devoted to these issues.The current budget for the Department of Law would pay for the unit. It would include two attorneys, a forensic auditor, an investigator, and a staff member.The fate of the plan depends on how much money is included in the state budget. If the legislature cuts Governor Bill Walker’s budget proposal, state officials would decide whether they can afford the unit.
Caribou are captured in a photograph taken last summer by a digital camera mounted in a small aircraft. (Photo courtesy ©Alaska Department of Fish and Game)The Porcupine caribou herd, whose range includes the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, has grown to the highest number seen since monitoring started back in the 1970s. That’s according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, which just released the results of a photocensus they did this summer.Listen nowThat census is done by mounting cameras to small aircraft, and taking aerial pictures of the herd during the short window they aggregate during the summer.The new count puts the herd at an estimated 218,000 animals. For comparison, the low point was 123,000 – back in 2001.The growth is part of an upward trend for the Porcupine herd; the surveys taken in 2010, 2013, and 2017 all show an increase.“We’ve definitely had an improvement in calf production and adult female survival,” said Jason Caikoski, a wildlife biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game. But he says that while they can identify things that explain how this caribou population is growing, they still don’t know the underlying causes that explain why.“Predation, changes in weather, changes in habitat… all those types of things affect all those demographics,” Caikoski said. “And currently we don’t have any studies specifically looking at what factors are affecting those demographics.”Photocensus counts are used by state and federal wildlife managers to help set hunting limits and seasons. Sometimes a finding will prompt a change in regulation, but in the case of the Porcupine caribou herd, which has a moderate population and low hunting pressure, no changes are anticipated.
Vijayawada: The 108 Emergency ambulance service contract employees staged a protest at Dharna Chowk here on Thursday. They demanded that the government consider them as the government servants and run the 108 service in the state by the government. They are working for the past 13 years, 12 hours a day and demanded that the government reduce working hours to 8 hours a day. They did not get pending allowances from the previous contractor GVK for the past two years. Also Read – DGP Gautam Sawang warns over objectional posts on social media Advertise With Us Speaking on the occasion, AP 108 services contract employee’s union president B Kiran Kumar wanted the government to pay the salaries, allot house sites for the emergency medical technicians and the pilots working in 108 service at their mandal headquarters and to set special mechanism for the maintenance of the 108 Ambulance service in the state.
Related posts:Deadline to resolve Panama Canal expansion receives extension to Feb. 1 Panama Canal expansion slowed by $1.6 billion financial dispute New proposal made to break Panama Canal expansion deadlock Strike halts work on Panama Canal expansion DAVOS — Work to enlarge the Panama Canal will be completed in 2015 no matter what, Panamanian Finance Minister Frank De Lima said Wednesday, despite thecontinuing feud over cost overruns with contractor GUPC.The Panama Canal authority “has strongly affirmed that the canal would be complete in 2015, with or with out” the GUPC consortium, the minister told AFP on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos.The consortium Grupo Unidos por el Canal (GUPC), led by Spanish builder Sacyr, has threatened to shut down the project unless the government agreed to pay $1.6 billion in unforseen costs.On Tuesday, the consortium proposed that local authorities help pay the overspending that has threatened progress on a project seen as crucial to the regular flow of international maritime trade.The minster acknowledged that the proposal was made, but said Panama was exploring “other alternatives” in case the GUPC abandoned the project, though he refused to say whether other builders had been approached.“For Panama as well as for everyone, it is important that the canal enlargement work ends as soon as possible,” he said.He added that ports up and down the North American coast were expanding to receive the jumbo sized ships designed to fit through the enlarged waterway.The overall canal upgrade was supposed to cost $5.2 billion.Already facing delays, the project aims to make the 80-kilometre (50-mile) waterway, which handles five percent of global maritime trade, big enough to handle new cargo ships that can carry 12,000 containers.Work on the canal began in 2009 with the goal of being done by 2014 to coincide with the waterway’s 100th birthday.But completion was pushed back to 2015 after a first disagreement between the canal authority and GUPC over cement quality.In the current dispute, GUPC says it ran into costly overruns because the canal authority gave the builders the wrong information regarding the area’s geology. Facebook Comments
Avalon Waterways is making life a little less costly for solo travellers, waiving single supplements for all 2017 cruises, as well as the cruise line’s 2018 preview cruises – a move that will deliver thousands of dollars in savings per cruise.Available on both Avalon’s Europe and Asia departures, the offer applies to all cabin classes except Royal Suites (Europe) and Category A (Asia), for bookings made before 4 April 2017.One of the popular itineraries that demonstrates the saving is Fascinating Vietnam, Cambodia and The Mekong River – 13 days from Ho Chi Minh to Siem Reap, departing 31 July 2017 and priced from $6159* per person – a saving of $3517.*Prices based on lead-in stateroom accommodation and include taxes, subject to availability and conditions. Cannot be combined with other offers except 5% Journeys Club discount. Avalon Waterwayssingle supplements
Go back to the enewsletterAustralia’s Aurora Expeditions has confirmed its founder and Australian explorer and mountaineer, Greg Mortimer OAM, will be the expedition leader aboard the maiden voyage of Aurora Expeditions’ new ship, the Greg Mortimer, departing Ushuaia, Argentina on 31 October, 2019.Construction of the new, purpose-built ship is progressing ahead of schedule, with the new vessel set to feature the latest innovations in naval technology, enabling Aurora Expeditions to continue pushing the boundaries in remote exploration. The Greg Mortimer will be the first expedition ship to use the patented Ulstein X-BOW, which allows for more gentle sea crossings, faster transit speeds as well as lower fuel consumption and air emissions.Aurora Expeditions Managing Director, Robert Halfpenny, said construction of the ship is progressing quickly, with more than 60% of the build now complete.“Everyone involved is incredibly excited to see the ship take shape, with the structural framework and exteriors now complete,” Halfpenny said.“Work on the interiors commenced earlier this month and once the cabins are complete, the focus will turn to soft furnishings.”Aurora Expeditions founder Greg Mortimer said the ship embodies the company’s commitment to sustainable and efficient expedition cruising.“Various teams from crew members, voyage leaders and operational specialists have been consulted on the ship design to ensure all details align with Aurora Expeditions’ steadfast pursuit of sustainable practices,” Mortimer said.“Antarctica is simply the most extraordinary place on earth and holds a very special place in my heart. I’ve been back almost every season for 25 years and can’t wait to head up the maiden Greg Mortimer voyage and share the experience with guests.”Greg Mortimer has always been at the forefront of adventure and exploration – in 1984 along with his expedition partner Tim Macartney-Snape, the duo became the first two Australians to reach the summit of Mt Everest, and even more impressively – they did so without the aid of supplementary oxygen.Departing on 31 October, 2019 from Ushuaia, Argentina, Greg will escort the maiden 12-day Spirit of Antarctica voyage taking guests through pristine Antarctic landscapes where whales are starting to arrive, penguins are breeding and fur seal pups are being born.There are spots available on the maiden voyage, but they are filling up fast with an exclusive early bird offer of 10% off all cabin categories when booked before 31 December, 2018.For more information, please visit www.auroraexpeditions.com.au.Go back to the enewsletter
20Jan Sheppard, special guests attend Gov. Snyder’s State of the State address State Rep. Jason Sheppard, R-Temperance, was joined by his wife, Melissa (not pictured), and special guests Adam McLaughlin of LPL Financial (right) and Tracy Oberlieter (left), Monroe Bank & Trust senior vice president and Monroe Ducks Unlimited chairman, for the 2015 State of the State address at the Capitol.### Categories: Sheppard News,Sheppard Photos
Tags: #SB 22Sep Rep. Crawford welcomes ‘Rep. for a Day’ contest winner to the Capitol Categories: Crawford News,K-Crawford Photos Novi Meadows student takes oath as ‘Junior Representative’State Rep. Kathy Crawford today hosted a very special guest in Lansing when Lexi Maxton joined the lawmaker as “Representative for a Day.”Lexi was selected as the winner of Rep. Crawford’s summer reading contest. The reading contest—which took place between June and September—invited elementary school students to fill out an entry bookmark each time they completed reading 10 books to win a trip to the Capitol.“The dedication that Lexi has shown both inside and outside the classroom is something that shouldn’t go unnoticed,” said Rep. Crawford, R-Novi. “The importance of reading cannot be stressed enough, as it is crucial to students’ future success. Students like Lexi set a prime example for their peers.”Lexi was sworn in as “junior representative” and participated in a mock committee hearing where the students met to decide the official state dessert. Lexi and her parents toured the Capitol alongside Rep. Crawford and then had lunch with the representative.“It was such a pleasure to have Lexi at my side today,” Rep. Crawford said. “It is clear that she will go on to do great things and will continue to set a positive example.”Rep. Crawford plans to host a similar reading contest next summer.###
Bill removes unnecessary regulationThe Michigan House today approved legislation introduced by state Rep. Scott VanSingel to exempt vehicles towing trailers from having to stop at a weigh station.An example of this type of vehicle would be an employee of a lawn care company driving a pickup truck or van towing a trailer with equipment.Currently, pickup trucks and vans operated as commercial vehicles are required to stop at a weigh station.“Weigh stations are checkpoints where weight and safety inspections are performed. Commercially used pickup trucks and vans towing trailers are rarely, if ever, even close to their maximum weight,” said VanSingel, of Grant. “This legislation reduces a regulatory burden on small businesses by allowing certain vehicles to legally bypass without being weighed.”VanSingel’s bill also clarifies that the driver of a semi-truck who fails to stop at a weigh station will be issued a ticket instead of being charged with a misdemeanor.House Bill 5090 now moves to the Senate for consideration.### Categories: VanSingel News 22Mar House approves Rep. VanSingel’s bill clarifying rules for vehicles towing trailers at weigh stations
Categories: Leutheuser News,News 28Jun Rep. Leutheuser’s measure helping charities keep more revenue signed into law Rep. Eric Leutheuser’s measure allowing many Michigan schools, churches and charities to keep more of their own fundraising revenue was signed into law by Gov. Rick Snyder today.The new law will exempt a qualifying non-profit’s first $10,000 in fundraising sales from Michigan’s sales tax. The measure will apply to tax-exempt organizations raising less than $25,000 a year through sales – including many schools, churches, hospitals and other groups in communities across the state.The previous sales tax exemption – set at $5,000 in annual fundraising sales – had not been increased in nearly 25 years, Leutheuser noted. He called the update long overdue.“Schools, churches and neighborhood groups are doing good charitable work all across Michigan,” said Leutheuser, of Hillsdale. “This change will allow organizations to spend more of their fundraising revenue directly on improvements for their neighborhoods and communities.”The change will have benefits in communities across Michigan, particularly boosting smaller-scale fundraising sales efforts. Each qualifying group could have hundreds more dollars to spend on their charitable efforts because they would send less sales tax money to the state.Leutheuser said the issue was brought to his attention by a constituent from the 58th House District.House Bill 4115 is now Public Act 249 of 2018.###
ShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares January 28, 2014;Rolling StoneRolling Stone’s Tim Dickinson published 27 statistics on the true state of the union to accompany President Obama’s State of the Union address. They counter the opening few paragraphs of the president’s speech in which he tried to present an upbeat, confident view of socio-economic progress in the nation.Among the devastating indicators, Dickinson included information on the proportion of new income that has gone to the top one percent since 2009 (95 percent), the financial wealth controlled by the bottom 60 percent of Americans (2.3 percent), and the record combined wealth of the 400 richest Americans ($2 trillion). The point didn’t go unnoticed by the president. “Inequality has deepened. Upward mobility has stalled,” the president said in his speech. “The cold, hard fact is that even in the midst of recovery, too many Americans are working more than ever just to get by—let alone get ahead.” But that language hardly gets at the depth of the income inequality revealed by Dickinson’s statistics. The commentary among pundits is that the president’s advisors convinced him to tone down some of the inequality language, and perhaps the use of devastating social indicators such as those cited by Dickinson, as undermining the overall upbeat, positive, hopeful tone of the speech.In the upbeat opening to the address, the president celebrated “the lowest unemployment rate in over five years…a rebounding housing market…[and] a manufacturing sector that’s adding jobs for the first time since the 1990s.” The official unemployment of 6.7 percent is high in and of itself, despite its decline during the president’s years in office, but Dickinson included an additional statistic: the percentage of the population that has given up looking for work (that is, left the labor force) plus those who have only been able to find part-time work when they really want and need full-time jobs, for an alternate, higher unemployment rate of 13.1 percent. In fact, the nation’s labor force participation rate is the lowest it has been in decades.Although the president may be correct that the nation is now creating manufacturing jobs, Dickinson points out that the number of jobs in the country is still 1.69 million less than it was at its peak in 2008. The nation is a long way from even replacing the jobs lost to the recession, not to mention generating new jobs for people who are—or should be—entering the labor force. No wonder that when president did get specific in the address, it was by calling for Congress to extend long-term unemployment benefits. Chad Stone of the Center for Budget and Program Priorities (CBPP) notes that the current long-term unemployment rate of 2.5 percent is almost twice as high as the 1.3 percent rates in December 2003 and February 1994 when long-term unemployment insurance benefits were terminated at the end of those earlier recessions.The president endorsed Senator Tom Harkin’s pending bill to increase the minimum wage to $10.10 an hour from the current federal minimum wage of $7.25. The $7.25 minimum wage is unchanged from July 2009. That’s the nominal rate, but due to the cost of living in some places, the “effective” minimum wage is actually a couple of dollars an hour lower in high-cost metropolitan areas such as New York City and Washington, D.C.That $7.25 an hour adds up to an annual income of $15,080. Some occupations typically found in the nonprofit sector show low average hourly wages, such as social and human service managers, with average hourly compensation of $15.77 and median hourly wages of $14.77, with typical workweeks of around 30 hours. Dickinson reports that 3.6 million Americans work for incomes at, or even below, the minimum wage. In the past, some nonprofits have tried at times to exempt themselves from paying a living wage, and our guess is that a slice of nonprofits are among those low-wage establishments, with a considerable number opting to pay less than the proposed “new” minimum of $10.10 an hour.Just recently, President Obama noted that the enforcement of drug laws has adversely affected blacks, resulting in racially disproportionate and possibility discriminatory criminal justice statistics. Dickinson noted that 5.9 million Americans are actually not allowed to vote in elections because of felony convictions and that the black proportion of that population is 37 percent. There is a nation-sized population behind bars: 2.3 million Americans incarcerated and another 4.8 million on probation and parole. However, these racially unbalanced, drug enforcement–related, disenfranchising statistics, which contribute to the nation’s problems of social mobility, were not mentioned in the president’s state of the union.Although the number of SOTU-viewers has declined over the years, millions of Americans still tune in to watch a presidential “State of the Union” address, a national political event that has continued with little change since the time of George Washington and John Adams. It is something of a ritual to hear the sergeant at arms announce the President of the United States as he enters the House of Representatives to deliver the address. Dickinson’s selection of statistics would have added depth and context to the issues discussed—or sidestepped—in the president’s address. Every year, no matter who occupies the White House, the State of the Union misses teachable moments for the viewing public to understand the dimensions of the challenges the nation faces.—Rick CohenShareTweetShareEmail0 Shares
Share28Tweet36Share12Email76 SharesPixabay. Creative Commons. Public domain.October 10, 2017; CBS SportsLast weekend, Vice President Mike Pence conspicuously departed an Indianapolis Colts NFL game post-anthem protest in an apparent pre-planned protest that cost the nation some $250,000.At 6:30AM, on October 10, @realDonaldTrump tweeted, “Why is the NFL getting massive tax breaks while at the same time disrespecting our Anthem, Flag and Country? Change tax law!” As of this writing, that tweet received nearly 100,000 likes.This tweet was part of a four-tweet predawn outburst that included a shot at Democrats concerning immigration, a promise to provide healthcare “with the power of the pen,” and his ratings-based criticism of ESPN’s Jemele Hill. By 8:13 a.m., Trump was tweeting about a new self-help book about himself, The Art of the Donald: Lessons from America’s Philosopher-in-Chief.We assume that by tax breaks, Trump is talking about the league’s former tax-exempt status. But, if this is the case, President Trump cannot use federal tax law to penalize the National Football League because it already voluntarily relinquished that status as an unincorporated nonprofit 501(c)(6) trade association in 2015 following public criticism. Today, the NFL is subject to tax like each of the NFL teams—except for the nonprofit, community-owned Green Bay Packers. The NFL also no longer has to publicly disclose its tax returns, which include the salaries of its top executives. In terms of the NFL paying taxes, the Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that the cost to the taxpayer of the NFL exemption was previously only about $10 million a year.Fast forwarding to the present-day national anthem controversy, President Trump might be tweeting about the tax breaks the NFL gets at the state level, including subsidies for stadiums. As in the case of the New Orleans Saints, these are local incentives and tax breaks. New stadiums are sometimes built in cooperation with cities and states that float municipal bonds (exempt from federal taxes), but that was probably not the threat President Trump was making in his 6:30 a.m. tweet.It is unclear whether Trump can target one sports league and not the others. NPQ reported on this issue in 2015. Republican congressman, Representative Matt Gaetz of Florida recently revived this debate on Capitol Hill. Gaetz mistakenly asserts, “Though individual teams are not tax-exempt, the NFL League Office is.” Nevertheless, like Trump’s tweet, the kneeling controversy is causing many eruptions with consequences.It could be that Trump’s Twitter outburst had to do with his long history of antagonism with the NFL. Once the owner of the New Jersey Generals in the defunct United States Football League, Trump and other league owners won an antitrust lawsuit against the NFL, but the jury awarded only $3.76 (including interest) instead of the $1.2 billion in claimed damages. The league folded in 1985.NFL spokesperson Joe Lockhart clarified the issue by the end of the day, saying, “The idea that we receive some sort of tax break is not true, so there’s nothing really here to give up.”It would seem that this president continues to use the urgent and visceral Twitter platform to forgo the strenuous and conventional methods of governing, leaving bewildering wakes of anxiety and confusion for all those affected. But Twitter rants do not ultimately replace the traditional apparatus of government. Perhaps as with the actual tax status of the NFL, Trump is missing an important point about his own tax plan. While the NFL’s nonprofit status provided it very little tax benefit while it lasted, his administration is planning the biggest gift of all to the NFL.Much of that money gets distributed back to the teams—and that’s where the potential for a giant loophole occurs. Almost none of NFL’s teams are public corporations but so-called pass-through businesses. Under the tax framework negotiated by the White House and Republican leadership, owners and investors of pass-through businesses would see their tax rates fall from a maximum of 39.6 percent to just 25 percent.The Tax Policy Center estimates the measure would result in $770 billion in lost tax revenue over a decade.“This pass-through loophole is several orders of magnitude bigger than other issues,” said Seth Hanlon, a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, a left-leaning think tank. “It’s just an enormous windfall.”Trump’s tax plan also greatly benefits him. And that is as predictable as his disconcerting morning tweets.—Jim SchafferShare28Tweet36Share12Email76 Shares
Share29TweetShareEmail29 Shares“Don’t pull that lever!” Pete BeardSeptember 13, 2018; Next CityNational politics often grabs more attention than local government. Certainly, US voting rates, not exactly high even in presidential elections, are far lower in local elections. An article in City Lab noted that half of the top 30 cities had seen fewer than one-in-five voters go to the polls in mayoral elections. Yet, as Nikki Fortunato Bas writes in Next City, local organizing can build equity and restore “the wealth and resources that have historically been taken from people of color and marginalized communities.”Bas led the East Bay Alliance for a Sustainable Economy (EBASE), an organization that builds labor-community coalitions to advance economic and social justice, in Oakland, California, for eight years (and then spent four years at the helm of a national coalition that includes EBASE), before she stepped down to run for City Council.Bas adds, “The future I’m working towards is a vibrant democracy where everyone has a real voice, where there’s deep organizing, combined with city leaders who view their roles as being both in service of and accountable to the communities they represent. With those ingredients in place, we can leverage the powers of cities to help us all thrive.”EBASE forms part of a national network of similar organizations across dozens of cities, known as the Partnership for Working Families. Before leaving the Partnership, Bas coauthored a report titled Unmasking the Hidden Powers of Cities, which details many ways activism can help achieve equity at the local level, with Roxana Tynan of the Los Angeles Alliance for a New Economy and Donald Cohen of In the Public Interest. In particular, this report outlines seven policy levers. These are: 1) direct spending, 2) procurement and contracting, 3) economic development and sectoral strategies, 4) proprietary power (i.e., the city as owner), 5) land use, 6) regulation, and 7) taxation.As Tynan, Bas, and Cohen explain, local governments—cities, counties, special districts (like transit), and school districts—together spent $1.618 trillion in 2012—one-tenth of our nation’s total economic activity that year. Spending, taxation, and regulation may be the most obvious paths to leveraging those dollars, but they are not the only ones. Some examples are:Procurement and contracting: In Denver, community organizing led to a 20 percent targeted hire agreement along with apprenticeship requirements on a $1-billion highway infrastructure project. In Pittsburgh, a community-led campaign led the city government to mandate a $15-an-hour minimum wage for workers on all city contracts.Economic development and sectoral strategies: In Seattle, community groups in 2016 won 77-percent voter approval to require hotel workers to be covered by health insurance and receive other protections.Local ownership: Nationwide, communities own over 25,000 water systems and more than 4,000 airports, but public agencies also own 127 seaports, 14 stadia, over 300 convention centers, 32 hotels, 460 internet networks, and over 2,000 power companies. Ports and airports alone, the authors note, support 22.9 million jobs nationwide. As owners, localities can impact the wages and working conditions of millions of people. For instance, Philadelphia raised airport worker minimum wages to $12 per hour, which benefitted the local workforce, many of whom were people of color.Land use: Building permits are another area where local government’s role is often under-appreciated. In Los Angeles, for instance, the city on average issues 141,000 building permits a year with an estimated value of $6.8 billion. Here zoning and related mechanisms can support affordable housing. A study last year from the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy found that 373 communities implemented such requirements nationally that over time has led to the development of over 173,000 units of affordable housing.Local economic organizing leads to other achievements as well. For instance, last January, as NPQ covered, the city of Nashville passed a policy that requires firms seeking economic development incentives to “disclose details like how many county residents they’ll hire, the wages they’ll pay and whether they’ve had any safety violations in the past.” But this didn’t just happen, it involved a major community organizing campaign led by Stand Up Nashville. As coalition co-chair Odessa Kelly explains in a case study featured in the report,When you think of change and tradition in the South, it’s not just about reaching people who are suffering the most; it’s about reaching people like me who are getting by but are unwittingly contributing to things staying the same… We’re helping people develop a habit of really examining those situations and searching for solutions. For people of color, it’s always implied that we are beneficiaries of the system—not that we are the system. And once we shift that perspective, that’s when we start to change things.—Steve DubbCorrection: This article has been altered from its original form to indicate that Bas was executive director of EBASE not for 12 years, but for eight and then worked for four years as director of the national coalition (Partnership for Working Families), before stepping down to run for City Council.Share29TweetShareEmail29 Shares
Satellite operator Eutelsat has unveiled the winners of its Hot Bird TV Awards.Best chidren’s channel was Russia’s Carousel. The cinema channel award went jointly to Russia’s Kino Soyuz and Sky Cinema 1 HD from Italy. Italy’s Babel won in the culture/education category, while the documentary channel award went to DMAX from Germany.SkyUno Italy won in the fiction/general entertainment category, while the lifestyle channel award went to Rai 5.France Ô won the music channel award, with BBC Arabic taking the news channel award.Best national window award went to Spain’s TVE Internacional, while the best sports channel was Trace Sports from France.The People’s Choice award went to Poland’s MiniMini, while the best new channel award went to Italian news channel TG Norba 24. The best programme award was given to Deutsche Welle TV’s The Beethoven Project.
Satellite operator Intelsat has unveiled plans to deploy new technology on its satellites that will enable the use of multiple frequency bands, a combination of widebeams and spotbeams and frequency re-use.The Epic NG platform will take the form of a complementary overaly that will be integrated with Intelsat’s existing satellite fleet and global IntelsatONE terrestrial network.Initially, the platform will feature two next-generation satellites. Intelsat is evaluating proposals by several manufacturers. These satellites, Intelsat 29e and Intelsat 33e, have projected launch dates in 2015 and 2016, and combined will serve every populated region in the world, according to the operator.According to Intelsat, the platform will deliver higher performance and lower cost per-bit, multi-band frequencies aligned to region- and application-specific requirements, backward compatibility and use of existing network infrastructure and customer-preferred network topology, high throughput, high efficiency and high availability, will enable smaller terminals, will support applications such as mobility and aero, and will benefit increasingly data-centric services like cellular backhaul.“The Intelsat Epic NG platform represents the next generation of satellites, a progressive evolution of the Intelsat fleet,” said Intelsat CEO Dave McGlade. “As the global demand for bandwidth surges and penetration of communications reaches ever further into developing regions and mobile applications, we are strategically investing in this platform to support our customers with a highly reliable and efficient broadband infrastructure as they launch new services and enter new geographies.”