Category: ksplfsam

  • Canada looks to hit record vehicle sales in 2017 after strong September

    first_imgRICHMOND HILL, Ont. – DesRosiers Automotive Consultants says it’s looking increasingly likely that Canadians will buy more than two million vehicles this year after another record-setting month.The consulting firm says September sales hit about 186,800 vehicles for a 7.7 per cent increase from the same month last year.Last month’s numbers brought total sales this year to 1.59 million, up 5.5 per cent from last year, with every month but April hitting a new record.Ford retook the top spot from General Motors with 30,881 sales in the month compared with GM’s 27,237 units sold, putting Ford about 14,000 units ahead of its chief rival for total sales so far this year.Many brands with a smaller footprint in Canada saw double-digit sales gains in September, including a 50.5 per cent increase for Volkswagen, 32.3 per cent increase for Jaguar, and 24.1 per cent increase for Maserati.DesRosiers said September’s total sales included 129,731 light trucks, making every month this year a record for the heavier segment that includes SUVs, pickup trucks, and vans, while cars sales of 57,106 in the month remain below records set as far back as the late 1980s.last_img read more

  • Man fined 800 for burnout on Pride crosswalk in Grande Prairie

    first_imgGRANDE PRAIRIE, A.B. – One man has been charged with two traffic offences for vandalizing a rainbow crosswalk in Grande Prairie.Cst. Melanie McIntosh with the Grande Prairie RCMP said that just before 8:00 p.m. Thursday, a witness reported to police that a Ford truck did a burnout on the recently repainted Pride crosswalk at the intersection of 98 Street and 103 Avenue. The crosswalk was marred with black tire tracks.With the information provided, police were able to locate the truck and the owner of the vehicle was issued two tickets under the Traffic Safety Act with fines totalling over $800.00. Cst. McIntosh said that the RCMP extended thanks to the citizens of Grande Prairie for their continued efforts to help solve crime in the community.last_img read more

  • Golden oldie Pizarro out to spoil Bayern’s double dreams

    first_imgBerlin: Werder Bremen’s Peruvian veteran Claudio Pizarro hopes to ruin Bayern Munich’s dreams of a domestic double when he faces his old club in the German Cup semi-final this week. Pizarro is an icon at both Bayern and Bremen, having scored over 100 goals for each club, and is chasing a record ninth appearance in the German Cup final when the two teams meet in Bremen on Wednesday. In a Bundesliga career spanning two decades, the 40-year-old made over 300 appearances for Bayern and is in his fourth spell at Bremen. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over ChandigarhBayern recently offered him a job as club ambassador after his playing career, but with a place in the German Cup final at stake on Wednesday, there is no question where Pizarro’s loyalties lie this week. “If I come off the bench, it won’t be easy for Bayern,” said the ageing striker last week. “I texted a few of the Bayern guys after the draw. They know it won’t be easy, and I think they would have preferred different opponent.” The game is the second of two back-to-back clashes between the teams. Bremen showed how tough an opponent they can be in a hard-fought Bundesliga game in Munich on Saturday. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced laterTen-man Werder were eventually sunk by a late Niklas Suele goal, but Pizarro said that the cup tie in Bremen would be “a completely different story”. “We will pick ourselves up. When it is 11 against 11 in our own stadium, we will show that we are able to score goals,” he said on Saturday. Bremen will also be hoping to count on Pizarro’s German Cup pedigree on Wednesday. The Peruvian has appeared in eight German Cup finals, more than any other player in history. He has won the competition five times with Bayern and once with Bremen in 2009. He also lost two finals with Bremen, both against Bayern, in 2000 and 2010. Pizarro admitted that he is itching to experience one more final at Berlin’s Olympiastadion. “I try to tell the players who have never played in a Berlin final how amazing it is,” he said last week. “I tell them almost every day how special it is in Berlin, in order to prepare them for Wednesday.” Pizarro may make a rare start for Bremen on Wednesday, after first-choice striker and captain Max Kruse picked up a knock to his thigh during Saturday’s league defeat. Bayern, meanwhile, are hoping that Mats Hummels and James Rodriguez will return to full fitness in time for the cup clash. The other semi-final pits Bremen’s traditional rivals Hamburg against Bundesliga high-fliers RB Leipzig on Tuesday.last_img read more

  • Azelio to Partner with Morocco’s MASEN to Build Full-Scale Verification Project

    Rabat – Private Swedish company Azelio  will team up with Morocco’s Agency for Sustainable Energy (MASEN) to build a “full-scale verification project” in Morocco this year.The company, which specializes in Stirling-based energy solutions,  also opened an office in Morocco to work “closely with MASEN and Moroccan suppliers,” reported  Renewables Now.The reporte added that Azelio’s first market installation is also planned in Morocco for the 2020 year. Read Also: Morocco’s MASEN Concludes Integrated Partnership on Solar TechnologyThe company is now looking forward to expanding its presence internationally.In addition to a headquarter in Sweden, the company also has an office in China.“The company is currently in an extensive expansion phase, finding new partners and establishing presence all over the world,” said Azelio.Morocco has recently attracted several international industrial companies. The country is keen on becoming a commercial and industrial hub for the African continent, and renewable energy sources have become one of the most crucial sectors for Morocco’s aspirations. Morocco’s Minister of Energy and Mining Aziz Rabbah said last month that Morocco produced 35 percent of its electricity output from renewable energy sources by the end of 2018.Earlier this month, Bloomberg ranked Morocco among the 22 countries that invested more than $2 billion in clean energy. read more

  • Pakistan UN upgrades hospital for Afghan refugees

    19 August 2008A hospital in an area in south-west Pakistan where many Afghans have taken shelter has received a facelift thanks to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and its partner, the American Refugee Committee (ARC). The Refugee Affected and Hosting Areas (RAHA) scheme was inaugurated at District Headquarters Hospital in Pishin, Balochistan province, yesterday.UNHCR contributed nearly $14,000 for the upgrade of the reproductive health-care unit – including a new labour room – at the facility, where over two-thirds of patients are believed to be Afghan. For its part, the ARC purchased medical equipment and hygiene kits and trained staff.“Afghan refugees have been part of the local communities for over 25 years, and the RAHA project is our ongoing programme that is aimed at compensating the local communities that have been affected due to the prolonged presence of refugees,” said John Soleck, who heads the UNHCR office in Quetta.Most of the roughly 400,000 registered Afghans in Balochistan live in urban settlements, and the new initiative – which also will cover the North West Frontier Province – seeks to help both the refugees and their host communities by boosting their health, education and water and sanitation facilities.Under this programme, UNHCR has also contributed to other projects in Balochistan, including improving healthcare for mothers and newborns. read more

  • HérouxDevtek acquires UK landinggear firm APPH for 128million

    MONTREAL — Canadian aerospace manufacturer Heroux-Devtek has made its first major acquisition since selling its aerostructure business 17 months ago, purchasing a British landing-gear company for $128 million.The Montreal-area company said the purchase of APPH from BBA Aviation PLC will expand its manufacturing reach in Europe, diversify its customer base and give it a greater presence in the lucrative repair and replacement part business.“The acquisition of APPH brings significant and immediate strategic benefits to Heroux-Devtek, while strengthening its global competitive position and status as a leading landing gear system provider for aircraft weighing less than 100,000 pounds,” Heroux-Devtek CEO Gilles Labbe said in a conference call from Britain on Monday.Based in Longueuil, Que., Heroux-Devtek is acquiring four plants in the United Kingdom and one in Wichita, Kan., a key centre for business jets in North America. The APPH plants have a combined workforce of about 400 employees.Heroux-Devtek’s shares hit a 52-week high of $11.74 in early trading Monday and were up 88 cents or 8.2% at $11.60 in the afternoon on the Toronto Stock Exchange.Labbe said the company expects to realize an unspecified amount of cost savings as it integrates the operations into its own network.“We are confident we can extract some significant synergies during that transition and also this will position us very well in Europe and Canada and the U.S. to cover all the customers around the world,” he told analysts.The acquisition will increase Heroux-Devtek’s revenues by about 30% with the addition of US$77 million of APPH revenues last year and US$12.5 million in adjusted pre-tax operating earnings.That will partially replace the US$130 million of revenues that were lost with the August 2012 sale of its aerostructure and industrial products division to Precision Castparts Corp. of Portland, Ore. for $300 million.Heroux-Devtek sold the division to concentrate on its core landing gear operations. APPH specializes in the design, engineering and manufacturing of landing gear, hydraulic systems and assemblies for European military and global civilian aircraft.APPH’s proprietary products and after-market parts and service will help to provide more balance and generate more stable and higher revenues and earnings than Heroux’s operations, which are more focused on building systems for aircraft manufacturers, including Bombardier, Boeing, Embraer and Dassault.Labbe said the company will now take a pause from additional acquisitions while it integrates APPH over the next two years and also supply complete landing gear systems for Boeing’s 777 and 777X aircraft.Cameron Doerksen of National Bank Financial said the APPH acquisition is a “perfect fit” for Heroux-Devtek. APPH operates in Heroux’s core landing gear segment, has a high degree of higher-margin proprietary products and a good mix of revenue, including aftermarket sales.The key proprietary programs included the Hawk jet trainer, which accounts for 20% of sales, the SAAB Gripen fighter and AW101 helicopter. In fact, proprietary products will contribute one quarter of overall revenues, up from 11% before the transaction.While APPH has similar mix of commercial and military business, Heroux is mainly exposed to the U.S. military.APPH is also focused on Britain and Europe.Doerksen raised his target price for Heroux-Devtek 18% to $13 on anticipation that APPH will add 10 cents per share in earnings.Heroux-Devtek reports its third-quarter results on Friday. It is expected to record nine cents per share in adjusted profits on $60 million of revenues, compared with 11 cents per share on $61.74 million a year earlier.The Canadian Press read more

  • Niagara prepares for winter

    We’re exactly one month from Christmas and Environment Canada says we could see the first winter storm of the season specifically in the Niagara Region in the next two days. London received a good dumping over the weekend, but that was lake effect snow. This time a storm system is making its way from the southern U.S. to here and a special weather statement has been issued. Freezing rain is also expected. But that’s not all. And while there’s not a lot of snow expected Monday night in the Niagara, Hamilton and Halton areas, there could be flurries which means many drivers will be brushing off their cars ahead of the morning commute.Meanwhile, the Niagara Peninsula is preparing for the first real blast of winter. As Lauran Sabourin tells us, there’s a mad dash right now for salt, shovels and snow tires.Just seeing the pictures of London buried under 30 centimetres of snow this weekend, sent drivers in Niagara, scurrying to get their snow tires on.Jim Pitul is with Niagara Battery & Tire: “Busiest time of year, yes.”At Niagara Battery and Tire, the wait for snow tires is two and a half hours.Shaeleen DiGilaramo knew there would be a wait: “I called this morning and I knew there was going to be a long wait.”Canadian Tire has been selling a lot of shovels. More than 24 hours ahead of this storm, Niagara Region is out putting up snow fence and brining the roads. Seventeen hundred lane kilometres of roads.Dave MacLeod is with Niagara Region Public Works: “So with the flurries that blow in. Over the roads. It prevents the ice from forming. And prevents it from sticking to the pavement. And creating hazardous driving conditions.”They have weather stations around the region and sensors in the pavement. These weather sensors will tell you the temperature of the road. If there’s precipitation on the roadway. Even if it’s been treated or not.They’ve been watching the weather computers all day. And the computers are saying with the temperatures plummeting Monday night there’s a potential for black ice.Dave: “And with the onset of the storm, we’re going to monitor the situation. We’re pretty much ready for it. And have been for a couple of weeks now.”The sanders and salters are certainly ready and by the end of this weather event, they expect to put around 15-hundred tons of salt on the road. 00:00:00 | 00:00:00::Projekktor V1.3.09 read more

  • Turkmenistan has long way to go in ensuring human rights says UN

    “Respect for human rights and the rule of law are essential to transform the effects of economic development into social change leading to a democratic society, lasting peace and security and the well-being of all who live in Turkmenistan,” Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Šimonovic said in a statement at the end of his two-day visit to the Central Asian nation. “Some significant laws have been adopted or amended. However, a lot more work is needed to complete this process and to ensure practice is in line with international standards.”He noted, for example, that criminal legislation was amended, defining the crime of torture and exclusion of evidence obtained through torture. However, there have been no cases of application of the exclusion provision in court proceedings, nor have there been any criminal prosecutions for torture. Also, the Prosecutor General’s Office is in charge of monitoring all places of deprivation of liberty. “However, I was informed that it has not received any cases alleging torture from detainees or their lawyers, nor has it initiated an investigation of possible cases ex officio.“This illustrates the need for independent monitoring of detention facilities in line with the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture,” he stated. Mr. Šimonovic, who visited the country from 24 to 25 May, also noted that his discussions with the Ministry of Justice, the Supreme Court and the Prosecutor General’s Office led him to conclude that “there is no independence of the judiciary” and that court proceedings are still subject to an oversight of legality by the Office of the Prosecutor General.“Without the appointment and promotion of judges in accordance with the internationally recognized principles of merit and separation of power, there will be no guarantees of their impartiality and independence,” he stated.Among the issues he raised in his meetings was the representation and participation of women in public life, in particular in law enforcement bodies. “I understand that there are a few women police officers but no female prosecutors at all,” he said. “Empowerment of women and their inclusion in the justice system is a prerequisite for fighting discrimination and domestic violence.”He also discussed human trafficking, juvenile justice, health, HIV/AIDS, education, human rights and counter-terrorism, enforced disappearances, as well as the situation of vulnerable groups such as persons with disabilities, refugees, asylum-seekers and stateless persons. Regarding pending requests for visits by several independent human rights experts appointed by the UN Human Rights Council, Mr. Šimonovic emphasized the importance of granting their requests, especially for the Special Rapporteur on Torture, who has already been received by Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. He also highlighted in his meetings that independent civil society is “indispensible” for democratic state-building, through ensuring effective enjoyment of the freedoms of expression, association, peaceful assembly, religion or belief. “I hope that the recently adopted laws on political parties and the mass media may be steps in the right direction that will lead to a widening of the democratic space,” he said, adding that the UN human rights office (OHCHR) is willing to support and cooperate with the Government if it decides to move in this direction.The next stop on Mr. Šimonovic’s visit to Central Asia, which has already taken him to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan, is Uzbekistan. read more

  • Gareon Conley confident in young secondary Malik Hooker

    OSU redshirt sophomore safety Malik Hooker (24) carries the ball after an interception during the spring game on April 16 at Ohio Stadium. Credit: Lantern file photoLast season was a standout year for the Ohio State secondary. The Buckeyes excelled in 2015 with the likes of now NFL players Vonn Bell and Eli Apple. Redshirt junior cornerback Gareon Conley is now the veteran member of the unit—and only returning starter—with fans eager to see how he and the rest of the defensive backs will respond to the immense pressure of living up to expectations. Conley had a solid 2015 campaign where he recorded two interceptions and 49 tackles and earned high praise from the OSU coaching staff. During his freshman campaign, he also found his way into a role with the special teams, and he contributed as a reserve cornerback. Coach Urban Meyer believes Conley is the next cornerback in a lineage of NFL-ready players“Gareon is playing, man, he’s playing at a high, high level right now,” Meyer said. “He’s an NFL corner someday.”With Conley the go-to guy, the secondary for the Scarlet and Gray has a scarcity of snaps played under their belts. The young players will turn to the now No. 1 defensive back for guidance, and Conley feels ready for the challenge. “It’s going to be a great challenge because I got a lot of guys who I’ve gotta bring up,” Conley said. “I just gotta help the guys right now learn the game.”Even though the task is tall, Conley feels the unit will respond to the pressure with poise, and there should be no drop off from last year’s secondary. “They all play at a high level already,” Conley said. “It’s just getting that experience right now so we can be ready for that first game.”One of the top candidates for the secondary for OSU, redshirt sophomore Marshon Lattimore, is coming off a season-ending hamstring injury. The injury ultimately led to a redshirt season for the Cleveland native, but his teammates expect he won’t be affected in 2016. “When he’s out there, he’s going full speed,” Conley said. “He looks real good. You can’t even tell when he’s out there.”Of all the candidates to start as a defensive back for the Scarlet and Gray, Conley said redshirt sophomore Malik Hooker has been one of the top performers of the summer so far. Hooker played in all 13 games last season, where he earned 10 total tackles on the year. He was listed as the No. 1 safety in the spring and has been named as a possible replacement for Vonn Bell and Tyvis Powell.“(Hooker), that’s my best friend,” Conley said. “He’s always been a great athlete. I say he’s one of the best on the team. His game right now, he’s playing at a high level. Off the charts.”The former New Castle, Pennsylvania, standout wide receiver and cornerback knows he has plenty of expectations by coaches and players. However, Hooker said he feels the backing of Conley is a testament to the effort he has put forth during the offseason, and his teammate’s confidence will keep him putting forth as much effort as possible. “For (Conley) to be a major key in the defense this year and last year, to say something like that just motivates me to work even harder and be the best I can be for the defense,” Hooker said.While starters have yet to be named for most of the team, Hooker appears to have an edge with two weeks before the season starts. Only time will tell if OSU enjoys another year of dominance in the secondary. read more

  • Bird flu confirmed in chickens and ducks in Wales as disease spreads

    first_imgTurkeys on a farm 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. It means extra biosecurity measures for all poultry and captive birds to protect them from the risk from wild birds.The zone covers the whole of Wales and is due to remain in place until Jan 6.It requires the immediate and compulsory housing of domestic chickens, hens, turkeys and ducks, or where this is not practical, their complete separation from contact with wild birds.For farmed geese, game birds and other captive birds, keepers should take practical steps to keep them separate from wild birds.  Bird flu has been confirmed in chickens and ducks in Wales, in the latest instance of the spread of the avian disease across Britain. The decision was taken to cull the birds before confirmation, amid strong suspicion of avian influenza H5N8 on a premises near Pontyberem, Carmarthenshire.It follows previous outbreaks across the country, including cases last month in Dumfries and Galloway in Scotland, and Somerset and Leicestershire.  Welsh Government environment secretary, Lesley Griffiths said: “This case of Avian Influenza H5N8 in a backyard flock near Pontyberem in Carmarthenshire follows the findings of infection in wild birds and a confirmed case in Lincolnshire.”It serves to reinforce the need for all bird keepers, particularly back yard flock keepers, to adhere to the requirements set out in the Prevention Zone, remain vigilant for signs of disease and practice good biosecurity at all times.”center_img Show more The disease has also affected other parts of Europe where thousands of farmed birds have been slaughtered following outbreaks. A 3km protection zone and 10km surveillance zone have been put in place to limit the risk of the disease spreading in the latest instance, as part of the wider surveillance and disease control measures.An avian influenza prevention zone declaration was made by Welsh ministers on Dec 6 last year. Restrictions have been placed on poultry farming following bird flu outbreaksCredit:Niall Carson /PAlast_img read more

  • Ivanplats reports on Platreef PGMnickelcoppergold project progress

    first_imgFollowing a site visit to the Platreef PGM-nickel-copper-gold asset in South Africa just after this month’s Mining Indaba, Ivanplats has provided an update on progress at the project.In July 2017, Ivanhoe, which indirectly owns 64% of the Platreef project through its subsidiary, Ivanplats, issued an independent, definitive feasibility study (DFS) for Platreef covering the first phase of production at an initial mining rate of 4 Mt/y. The DFS estimated Platreef’s initial, average annual production rate would be 476,000 oz of platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold, plus 21 MIb (9,525 t) of nickel and 13 MIb (5,897 t) of copper.In the latest update, Ivanplats said good progress continued to be made on Shaft 1’s 850-m-level station. This is the second of three horizontal mining access stations planned for Shaft 1 at Platreef on the northern limb of the Bushveld Complex.Platreef said: “The first underground mining access station has been constructed at the 750-m level, following earlier development of a water-pumping station at the 450-m level. The third mining access station will be developed at a mine-working depth of 950 m.”Shaft 1 is expected to reach its projected, final depth of approximately 980 m below surface, complete with all four of the stations, in early 2020, Ivanplats said. The mining zones in the current Platreef mine plan occur at depths ranging from approximately 700 m to 1,200 m below surface.Construction also is underway on the concrete foundation for the project’s main production shaft ─ Shaft 2, according to Ivanplats. “This foundation will support the 103-m-tall concrete headgear (headframe) that will house Shaft 2’s permanent hoisting facilities and support the shaft collar,” the company said.Shaft 2 will have an internal diameter of 10 m and will be equipped with two 40-t rock-hoisting skips with a capacity to hoist a total of 6 Mt/y of ore – the single largest hoisting capacity at any mine in Africa, according to Ivanplats.The South African beneficiaries of the approved broad-based, black economic empowerment structure have a 26% stake in the Platreef project. The remaining 10% is owned by a Japanese consortium of ITOCHU Corp; Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation; and Japan Gas Corp.last_img read more

  • Extremely unlikely Peter Mathews says hed need to win the lotto to

    first_imgREFORM ALLIANCE TD Peter Mathews has admitted he would need to win the lotto in order to run in May’s European elections, admitting it is now “extremely unlikely” he will do so.Mathews has been talked about as a possible high-profile independent candidate in the three-seat Dublin constituency, but has admitted that he does not have the money to contest the election on 23 May.He told TheJournal.ie that in recent weeks he has been assessing “the pragmatics and the practicalities” of being able to launch a campaign and succeed in getting elected, saying that if he doesn’t win a seat it will be “hugely expensive”.“That’s something that impacts not just on oneself, but one’s family,” the former Fine Gael TD, who was expelled over his vote against the abortion legislation last summer, added.He said it would cost upwards of €100,000 to run an effective election campaign and pointed out that as a non-party candidate he is at a disadvantage when it comes to donations.Mathews said that without one of his prize bonds coming in or a lotto win it would be “financial too daunting” to contest the election.“I’d have to win the lotto, that’s the reality. It looks extremely unlikely,” he said.Mathews previously said he wanted the backing of all political parties in a bid to unite all 11 Irish MEPs behind a push to secure debt write down of €53 billion for Ireland.He said Irish people needed “political statesmanlike leadership” and a “straight-talking team” of 11 “robust individuals” to advance the attempts to secure an extensive debt write down for Ireland.The Dublin South deputy was rumoured to have held informal talks with Fianna Fáil about running as their candidate in the capital but nothing materialised and the party has since chosen Mary Fitzpatrick as its candidate.Sitting MEP Nessa Childers is the only independent candidate in Dublin. Also running are Emer Costello for Labour, Paul Murphy for the Socialist Party, Brid Smith for People Before Profit, Lynn Boylan for Sinn Féin, Brian Hayes for Fine Gael, and Eamon Ryan for the Green Party.Mathews added that he would continue to focus on his work with the Reform Alliance of expelled Fine Gael TDs and Senators as well as advancing his private members’ bill which would allow parliamentarians a free vote on issues of conscience.FG Ireland South candidate: ‘If you’re in Bantry, Brussels or Bruges it’s the same.’Pat ‘The Cope’: Fianna Fáil’s European election strategy could be ‘dangerous’Read all our local and European election coverage here >last_img read more

  • Morning Press Politics paying tribute aid to needy

    first_img Were you away for the weekend? Catch up on some big stories.There are rumors that we’ll see our first frost this week. Local weather coverage is online here.Conservative side dominates county elections resultsIn the wake of Tuesday’s election, Clark County’s political leadership is as conservative as it’s ever been, with Republicans picking up seats formerly held by Democrats.Across the nation and in Southwest Washington, the Republican strategy worked. That was evident in Clark County, where Republicans outnumber Democrats and worked hard to get out the vote.They micro-targeted voters and then made sure to get their message across.“Republicans got better at their ground game this election,” said Carolyn Long, a political scientist at WSU Vancouver. Three examples:o Republican state House candidate Lynda Wilson, the former county GOP chairwoman, beat incumbent Rep. Monica Stonier, D-Vancouver, in what was seen as a “swing” district in east Vancouver.o Clark County commissioner candidate Craig Pridemore, a Democrat, conceded Friday to Jeanne Stewart. He led on election night, but the late votes went Stewart’s way. Jeanne StewartWon County Commissioner seatlast_img read more

  • Consumer Reports Launches Redesign

    first_imgConsumer Reports-which is published by Yonkers, New York-based nonprofit the Consumers Union-has experienced significant growth over the last five years, the publisher said, with newsstand sales reaching 190,000 in 2008, up from 83,845 in 2002. Subscriptions this year are 4.3 million, up 12 percent from 3.9 million in 2002.ConsumerReports.org has 3.2 million paid subscribers making it the largest paid subscriber site in the world, according to the publisher. Consumer Reports tapped renowned consultant Luke Hayman to help launch a major redesign, unveiled with the October issue which hits newsstands today.Hayman, a designer with Pentagram, worked with Consumer Reports creative director Tim La Palme to develop the magazine’s new look. The redesign features a new logo, a simplified color palette, re-organized editorial sections, an updated ratings section with new best buys and recommended products logos, a new section for updates on “big-ticket” products and a new Q+A feature section.Hayman in July signed on with Manhattan Media to help redesign Harvard “lifestyle” magazine 02138, which the community newspaper and magazine publisher acquired earlier this year. In February, Hayman was hired by Radar magazine as a creative consultant.last_img read more

  • Hatirjheel not cleared of illegal structures despite HC order

    first_imgIllegal structures including restaurants are not removed from Hatirjheel area despite the High Court ordered the removal within 17 September. Photo: Galib AshrafMore than 20 food shops around Dhaka’s Hatirjheel lake that are declared illegal structures, have not been removed despite expiry of a 17 September deadline issued by the High Court.On Tuesday (25 September) afternoon, this correspondent found at least 20 food kiosks were still operating. Some food trucks were also selling items there.Salespersons in the area denied receiving any notice for stopping their business although some of them said they had watched such report on television.Kiosks on the pavement hamper movement of vehicles as well as aesthetic value of the Hatirjheel project.The directive for removal of illegal structures inside the Hatirjheel-Begunbari project came from the court on 10 September, following a public interest litigation filed by Human Rights and Peace for Bangladesh (HRPB) based on a newspaper report on 1 August.A High Court bench of justice Md Nazrul Islam Talukder and justice KM Hafizul Alam asked the authorities to demolish and remove structures built in violation of the layout of the project within next seven days that ended on 17 September.Mustafa [single name], a representative of YOD restaurant in Hatirjheel, told Prothom Alo that they did not get any such directive in the past two weeks.“We are doing business as usual and we were not served with any notice from the police or any other authorities,” he claimed.Another salesperson of a makeshift kiosk near Gulshan Police Plaza said they have seen such a report but no one prevented them from operating the business there.Petitioner Manjil Murshed of HRPB said, “I have sent the certified copy of the court to the Rajuk (capital development authority) chairman. But it is sad that they are yet to act on that.”The High Court, too, has instructed the Rajuk chairman, the Dhaka metropolitan police commissioner, the officer in charge of Hatirjheel police station and the project director to ensure regular supervision of the area to prevent construction of illegal structures.Project director of Rajuk Jamal Akhter Bhuiyan said he is not aware of any copy that is said to have been sent from the High Court to take actions as directed.Asked about approval of those structures defying the project layout, he said, “Rajuk gave the approval for setting up restaurants and other structures based on public demand. There was not even any place to drink water and visitors faced problems for lack of facilities. We gave the permission in view of the visitors’ sufferings.”The official, however, mentioned that they would “definitely follow the court order”.Manjil Morshed expressed frustration at the inaction of authorities, saying, “I am not sure why they are killing time to take any action.”“We would take next course of action after the court opens on 1 October.”Rajuk chairman Md Abdur Rahman could not be reached over mobile phone after repeated attempts on Tuesday evening.last_img read more

  • Report Russia writes off most of NKoreas debt

    first_img Sponsored Stories Top Stories Clean energy: Why it matters for Arizona Construction begins on Chandler hospital expansion project Comments   Share   Mary Coyle ice cream to reopen in central Phoenix How men can have a healthy 2019center_img Quick workouts for men MOSCOW (AP) – Russian media report that the country has written off most of North Korea’s $11 billion debt.The Russian finance ministry on Tuesday confirmed that it has signed a debt deal with North Korea, but refused to provide immediate details.Interfax quoted deputy finance minister Sergei Storchak as saying that Russia has written off 90 percent of the Soviet-era debt.Storchak told Interfax that the remaining $1 billion would be used as part of the “debt for aid” program in implementing energy, health care and educational projects with Pyongyang. Bottoms up! Enjoy a cold one for International Beer Day North Korea’s state news agency KCNA said the agreement would create conditions for “boosting the relations of economic cooperation between the two countries.”(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.) Former Arizona Rep. Don Shooter shows health improvementlast_img read more

  • Travel Agent reputation diminishes with every Travel Agency collapse

    first_imgTravelManagers AustraliaTravel Agent reputation diminishes with every Travel Agency collapseThe travel industry has unfortunately in the last two weeks received further negative consumer press with the Gold Coast based travel company Australian Escapes being placed into voluntary administration earlier this month as reported in Sydney’s The Daily Telegraph and the Gold Coast Bulletin on 16 March and the 22 March smartcompany.com.au e-newsletter, with “well in excess of 15,000 consumers affected.”TravelManagers’ Chairman Barry Mayo says the question must be asked – what are the views of the individual state governments to the increasing number of travel agency collapses and resulting consumer losses after having abandoned the Travel Compensation Fund (TCF)?“If nothing else, the significant number of Australian consumers that have incurred losses as a direct result of eight reported collapses since May 2015 prove consumer protection against a minority of travel agent insolvencies is clearly an issue.”TravelManagers is a true customer advocate and Mayo has consistently lobbied following the closure of the TCF for the industry to retain some form of industry-wide consumer protection.“The situation being experienced by Australian Escapes’ members and customers from previous travel agency collapses is precisely what TravelManagers was fearful of when it first voiced its concerns. I’m confident the now reportedly thousands of customers out of pocket due to recent travel agency collapses would wholeheartedly support a consumer protection component being a requirement for industry participation in an accreditation scheme,” says Mayo.Mayo strongly believes the state governments are guilty of disbanding the TCF without ensuring the travelling public was provided with an effective form of consumer protection against travel agent insolvency.“It can no longer be disputed that consumer losses now being experienced are as a direct result of state governments disbanding the TCF and replacing it with an industry accreditation scheme that fails to demand robust financial criteria or deliver consumer protection. Government and individual members of the industry must now acknowledge these consumer losses are not going to cease and recognise that an accreditation scheme without consumer compensation is questionable from both consumer and industry perspectives.”Mayo highlights that the travel industry as a whole needs to be concerned with the declining consumer confidence in travel agents that grows with each negative media report.“The real risk to the travel agent community is that more and more people will lose confidence in travel agents and may opt to book directly with suppliers both in Australia and overseas. How many customers and potential customers will now choose to book their travel arrangements direct with individual suppliers instead of obtaining the professional advice and multiple benefits a travel agent will provide? It will be future bookings that will be affected and when the impact of negative press in the consumer realm starts to really become apparent.”Mayo believes the question the state governments need to answer is simple.“Will the state governments take action to insist on an alternative form of consumer protection against travel intermediary insolvency that is consistent and universal before more consumers are out of pocket and the integrity of the Australian travel agent industry is further compromised?”“Why do the state governments find this so hard to answer?” asks Mayo.About TravelManagers TravelManagers operates in all Australian States and is a wholly owned subsidiary of House of Travel, Australasia’s largest independent travel company which has a forecast turnover of $1.5 billion for 2015. TravelManagers is a sister company to Hoot Holidays, also owned by House of Travel, and has more than 490 personal travel managers throughout Australia with a dedicated support team at the company’s national partnership office in Sydney. TravelManagers places all customer money in a dedicated and audited Client Trust Account which is separate from the general business accounts, ensuring client funds are only used for client purchases.Other related links: Gold Coast Bulletin Daily Telegraph SmartCompany.com.auSource = TravelManagers Australialast_img read more

  • Attention All HELOC Issuers Please Report to CFPB

    first_img in Daily Dose, Featured, Government, News The CFPB announced last week that the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), enacted in 1975 requiring financial institutions to maintain, report, and publicly disclose information about mortgages, has been temporarily changed for banks and credit unions that offer Home Equity Lines of Credit (HELOC).The change, which was originally proposed in July 2017, is in response to reporting thresholds that currently require financial institutions to report HELOCs if they made 100 of the loans in the last two years. In the final rule, this threshold will be increased to 500 through 2018 and 2019. The temporary modification allows the CFPB to decide whether it will make a permanent adjustment.”The Home Mortgage Disclosure Act is a vital source of information on the health and fairness of the mortgage market,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Today’s amendments show that the Consumer Bureau is committed to ensuring that financial institutions are able to comply with the rule, and to promoting transparency across the largest consumer financial market in the world.”Key terms were also addressed in the final ruling, such as “temporary financing” and “automated underwriting system”. The CFPB also focused on establishing transition rules for reporting certain loans purchased by financial institutions and a change that will facilitate reporting the census tract of a property using geocoding.“The CFPB is committed to well-tailored and effective regulations and has sought to carefully calibrate its efforts to ensure consistency with respect to consumer financial protections across the financial services marketplace,” the report cited.The National Association of Federal Credit Unions submitted a letter on the CFPB’s proposal in early August to request further defining changes to the proposed rule. This included better defining a small credit union and urging the threshold change to not only be permanent, but raised higher. However, the NAFCU said they will be re-engaging with the bureau to ensure the recommendations they submitted are addressed.To see the final ruling, click here. Attention All HELOC Issuers: Please Report to CFPB August 25, 2017 585 Views center_img Share HELOC Home Mortgage Disclosure Act 2017-08-25 Brianna Gilpinlast_img read more

  • The Haboob Blog obviously isnt a place to wade in

    first_img The Haboob Blog obviously isn’t a place to wade into the political arena, but here’s a story most sports fans can agree upon.Somebody needs to tell Louisiana Sen. Bill Cassidy that sometimes, life isn’t fair. And when things are unfair in games, that is probably a lesser priority than when things are not fair because the government is currently shut down. Debate the reasons for that over in the comments section of your news website of choice, but can we all find agreement that what Bill did on the Senate floor Friday doesn’t look important juxtaposed to said government shutdown? On Friday, Cassidy spoke on the Senate floor, complaining about the pass inference and helmet-to-helmet hit that wasn’t called on the Los Angeles Rams last Sunday, which helped them force overtime and beat the New Orleans Saints in the NFC Championship Game.Bill begins his remarks noting that the government is shut down — and then proceeds to puts together a very nice presentation about Rams cornerback Nickell Robey-Coleman very clearly hitting Saints receiver Tommylee Lewis well before the ball arrived AND without turning his head AND in the head. (Screenshot) Grace expects Greinke trade to have emotional impact 4 Comments   Share   Top Stories We get it!But now’s just not the time to bring this up, Bill, even if we admit you put forth a lot of effort with the presentation and even got a glossy high-resolution image of the play at Kinko’s. Derrick Hall satisfied with D-backs’ buying and selling .@SenBillCassidy on #NFCChampionshipGame: “The state of Louisiana is outraged because of what happened in the Superdome last Sunday…What happened in my belief, and the belief of many, was the most blatant and consequential blown call in NFL history.” pic.twitter.com/35h2LwZzki— CSPAN (@cspan) January 25, 2019All the arguments Bill makes are true!The NFL even halfheartedly admitted a missed call or three by fining Robey-Coleman for the helmet-to-helmet hit on Friday.That play indeed changed the game, forcing New Orleans to hit a field goal instead of scoring a potential touchdown. That allowed Los Angeles to tie the game up in regulation, and while Drew Brees threw an interception in overtime and that played a role in the Saints losing, it still doesn’t feel great that they needed overtime at all. Former Cardinals kicker Phil Dawson retires The 5: Takeaways from the Coyotes’ introduction of Alex Meruelolast_img read more

  • This image released by Disney shows a scene from M

    first_img This image released by Disney shows a scene from Marvel Studios’ “Black Panther.” (Matt Kennedy/Marvel Studios-Disney via AP) NEW YORK, N.Y. – It took six weeks but “Black Panther” has finally been unseated as the top film at the North American box office. The monsters vs. robots science-fiction sequel “Pacific Rim: Uprising” dethroned the superhero sensation with $28 million in ticket sales over the weekend, according to studio estimates Sunday.But the result for “Pacific Rim: Uprising,” a Universal Pictures-Legendary Entertainment release that cost $150 million to make, was soft — at least domestically. Like the recently released “Tomb Raider,” its biggest business was in China. “Pacific Rim: Uprising” debuted there with $65 million for Legendary, which the Chinese conglomerate Wanda Group acquired in 2016.And even though “Black Panther” slid to second place with $16.7 million in its sixth weekend, Ryan Coogler’s film notched another box-office milestone. It’s now the highest-grossing superhero film ever in North America, not accounting for inflation. The film’s $631 million in domestic ticket sales has surpassed the $623 million of 2012’s “The Avengers.” ”Black Panther” also becomes the fifth highest grossing film of all-time, rising above “Star Wars: The Last Jedi.”Yet the record-breaking hit of “Black Panther” has been followed by a string of lacklustre performers, including “Tomb Raider,” ”A Wrinkle in Time” and “Red Sparrow.” ”Pacific Rim: Uprising” may have taken down the champ, but a blockbuster heir to “Black Panther” is yet to be found. Next weekend, Steven Spielberg will try with his big-budget virtual-reality spectacle “Ready Player One.”Hollywood has essentially already squandered the early lead “Black Panther” gave it. Despite the firepower of “Black Panther,” the year is running 2.6 per cent behind 2017 at U.S and Canada theatres, according to comScore. This weekend was down 36.5 per cent from last year when “Beauty and the Beast” was in its second week and the surprisingly successful “Power Rangers” debuted.“One movie isn’t enough to support a whole marketplace,” said Paul Dergarabedian, senior media analyst for comScore. “We need a real shot in the arm here. ‘Pacific Rim,’ that’s a fine opening. But we need bigger numbers to be put up.”“Pacific Rim: Uprising” could point to better results abroad, where it grossed $122.5 million over the weekend. The July 2013 original, directed by Guillermo del Toro, was likewise conceived as an East-West hybrid tailored after classic kaiju movies, the Japanese giant monster genre. It launched with $37.3 million domestically and $45 million in China.The $411 million worldwide haul for del Toro’s film was enough to prompt a sequel, even if enthusiasm for a second installment was considerably higher in Asia. Steven S. DeKnight co-wrote and directed “Uprising,” which critics largely slammed. It scored a 46 per cent fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes.“The domestic market was a very important part of it and we really came in above any reasonable expectations,” said Jim Orr, domestic distribution chief for Universal. “This was always engineered to be a worldwide event film.”The strategy was similar for Warner Bros.’ “Tomb Raider” reboot, starring Alicia Vikander. Domestically, it dropped steeply in its second week, sliding 56 per cent with $10.4 million. Sales have been brisker overseas, where “Tomb Raider” has grossed $170 million thus far.MGM and Paramount Pictures’ animated family sequel “Sherlock Gnomes” disappointed with a $10.6 million debut. Forecasts had been higher for the sequel to “Gnomeo & Juliet,” which grossed $194 million worldwide in 2011.The results were also modest for Steven Soderbergh’s “Unsane,” a psychological thriller starring Claire Foy (“The Crown”) that the director shot with iPhones. The Bleecker Street-Fingerprint Releasing film opened with $3.9 million in 2,023 theatres. Though both were inexpensively made, neither of Soderbergh’s first two films following his brief retirement from Hollywood has made much of a dent at the box office. Last year’s “Logan Lucky,” starring Channing Tatum, tapped out at $27.8 million domestically.But there were also bright spots. The Christian drama “I Can Only Imagine” held especially strongly in its second weekend. The Lionsgate-Roadside Attractions release grossed $13.8 million, bringing its two-week total to $38.5 million. “I Can Only Imagine” has emerged as the clear faith-based film of choice ahead of Easter, likely to the detriment of “Paul: Apostle of Christ,” which took in $5 million this weekend for Sony’s Affirm Films.And in limited release, Wes Anderson’s stop-motion animated “Isle of Dogs” got off to a healthy start with $1.6 million in 27 theatres. Fox Searchlight, coming off its best-picture win at the Academy Awards for “The Shape of Water,” carefully selected the opening-weekend theatres to cater to Anderson’s die-hard fans.“We just wanted to be out there to give his audience an opportunity to find the film,” said Frank Rodriguez, distribution head for Searchlight.Anderson is coming off the biggest box-office hit of his career. “The Grand Budapest Hotel” grossed $175 million worldwide in 2014. “Isle of Dogs,” about a Japanese island of misfit canines in a future dystopia, has been received with nearly equal fanfare. Critics gave it a 93 per cent fresh Rotten Tomatoes score, audiences gave it an “A” CinemaScore and Searchlight noted its opening-weekend audience was more than 60 per cent under the age of 30. But it has also sparked questions of cultural appropriation .“I don’t know how that’s going to affect most of the audience,” said Rodriguez. “We know that audiences want to see it. We can hope that people make their own decisions and hopefully look at the film as an homage to a great culture and great filmmakers. It’s pretty much Wes.”Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at U.S. and Canadian theatres, according to comScore. Where available, the latest international numbers also are included. Final three-day domestic figures will be released Monday.1. “Pacific Rim: Uprising,” $28 million ($122.5 million international).2. “Black Panther,” $16.7 million ($12.9 million international).3. “I Can Only Imagine,” $13.8 million.4. “Sherlock Gnomes,” $10.6 million.5. “Tomb Raider,” $10.4 million.6. “A Wrinkle in Time,” $8 million.7. “Love, Simon,” $7.8 million.8. “Paul, Apostle of Christ,” $5 million.9. “Game Night,” $4.2 million.10. “Midnight Sun,” $4.1 million.___Estimated ticket sales for Friday through Sunday at international theatres (excluding the U.S. and Canada), according to comScore:1. “Pacific Rim: Uprising,” $122.5 million.2. “Tomb Raider,” $34.1 million.3. “Peter Rabbit,” $28 million.4. “Black Panther,” $12.9 million.5. “The Boss Baby,” $7.8 million.6. “Red Sparrow,” $6.2 million.7. “Operation Red Sea,” $6.2 million.8. “The Shape of Water,” $5.2 million.9. “Be With You,” $5.1 million.10. “Coco,” $4.5 million.___Follow AP Film Writer Jake Coyle on Twitter at: http://twitter.com/jakecoyleAP ‘Pacific Rim: Uprising’ dethrones ‘Black Panther’center_img by Jake Coyle, The Associated Press Posted Mar 25, 2018 9:27 am PDT Last Updated Mar 26, 2018 at 3:01 pm PDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Emaillast_img read more