Georgia Power, Southern Nuclear to Assume Project Management of Vogtle    

Georgia Power, Southern Nuclear to Assume Project Management of Vogtle

$subtitles.get($x) The change in project management will not affect Toshiba’s agreement to pay $3.68 billion for the project.
Readhttp://www.power-eng.com/articles/2017/06/georgia-power-souther-nuclear-to-assume-project-management-of-vogtle.html?cmpid=enl_pe_powerengineeringe-newsletter_2017-06-30&email_address=micheletkearney@gmail.com&eid=288118515&bid=1801644
          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project.
          Comment on Street Knowledge with Chris Graham: Why no love for UVA basketball? by Nelson Jon Kane   
Rochester, Minnesota: No Brilliant Company Is Disrupting any $200 Billion Industry.
          China Completes Construction Of New Missile Shelters On Disputed South China Sea Islands   

Trump's "up and down" relationship with China may be on the precipice of taking a sharp dive into the proverbial abyss.  After frequently threatening to label China a "currency manipulator" on the campaign trail last year, Trump's relationship with China's President Xi Jinping took a decided turn for the better after a meeting at Mar-a-Lago in which China vowed to help address the "menace of North Korea" .

But apparently those efforts have officially failed:

 

And, shortly after those efforts were declared dead, the Trump administration signed a $1.3 billion arms deal with Taiwan, a deal which China has "demanded" be cancelled immediately.

Meanwhile, as the Financial Times points out today, in the midst of all the international crises, China has made great strides building out and further militarizing their disputed islands in the South China Sea.

Over the past three months, China has built four new missile shelters on Fiery Cross, boosting the number of installations on the reef to 12, according to satellite images provided to the Financial Times by the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

 

China has also expanded radar facilities on Fiery Cross and two other disputed reefs — Subi and Mischief — in the Spratly Island chain, and started building underground structures that Greg Poling, director of CSIS’s Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative, assesses will be used to store munitions.

 

“We haven’t seen any slowdown in construction, including since the Mar-a-Lago summit,” said Mr Poling. “The islands are built and they are clearly militarised, which means they already got over the hard part. Now every time they put in a new radar or new missile shelter, it is harder for the world to get angry. They are building a gun, they are just not putting the bullets in yet.”

 

The advances underscore how much progress China has made towards militarizing the man-made islands in ways that significantly enhance its ability to both monitor activity in the South China Sea and to project power in the western Pacific where the US has been the dominant power in the seven decades since the second world war.

Euan Graham, an Asia expert at the Lowy Institute in Sydney, said it was “not quite game over in the South China Sea” but that China had fundamentally altered the status quo over the islands that would be hard to change barring war or natural disasters.

 

“They already exert a strategic effect by projecting China’s presence much further out,” said Mr Graham. “They will not prevent the US Navy from operating in their vicinity, but they will complicate the threat environment for US ships and aircraft — by extending the [Chinese navy’s] surveillance and targeting net, as well as the envelope of power projection.”

 

Of course, these latest provocations come despite a promise made to Obama in 2015 that "China would not militarize the man-made islands"...a promise which the Obama administration apparently took at face value and proceeded to bury their heads in the sand.

During a visit to Washington, Mr Xi told Barack Obama in 2015 that China would not militarise the man-made islands, but in the intervening 20 months Beijing has stepped up construction, and now has runways that can accommodate Chinese fighter jets.

 

China’s legal claim to the seas around the maritime features is legally controversial since many were dredged out of coral and sand and thus not entitled to status as islands. But Vasily Kashin, an expert on the Chinese military at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow, said the goal was never legal sovereignty but to give China forward bases from which it could patrol and exercise control in their vicinity.

 

“If you have this infrastructure in the Spratlys, it allows China to constantly monitor aircraft and ships in the South China Sea. The point is that no one will be able to do anything in the area without them seeing.”

 

Ely Ratner, an Asia expert who served in the Obama administration, said Washington had failed to craft a strategy to convince China to halt militarisation of the man-made islands. “Until China believes that there will be significant costs . . . I don’t think they have any reason to slow down,” said Mr Ratner. “They have been pushing on an open door and have been surprised at how little resistance they have faced.”

 

Critics say the Obama administration took too cautious an approach to avoid creating tensions that would hurt the ability for co-operation on other issues. Meanwhile, some experts say the Trump team has given China a relatively free pass to maximise the chances it will boost pressure on North Korea to give up its nuclear programme.

Somehow we suspect the Trump administration will end up being slightly less "accommodating" over the long term...


          Chris Christie Announces New Jersey Government Shutdown, Orders State Of Emergency   

Illinois, Maine, Connecticut: the end of the old fiscal year and the failure of numerous states to enter the new one with a budget, means that some of America's most populous states have seen their local governments grind to a halt overnight until some spending agreement is reached. Now we can also add New Jersey to this list.

On Saturday morning, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency in the state, and announced a partial state government shutdown as New Jersey become the latest state to enter the new fiscal year without an approved budget after the Republican governor and the Democrat-led Legislature failed to reach an agreement by the deadline at midnight Friday, CBS New York reports.

In a news conference Saturday morning, Christie blamed Democratic State Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto for causing the shutdown. And, just like Illinois and Connecticut, Christie and the Democrat-led Legislature are returning to work in hopes of resolving the state's first government shutdown since 2006 and the first under Christie, before NJ is downgraded further by the rating agencies.

"If there's not a resolution to this today, everyone will be back tomorrow," Christie said, calling the shutdown "embarrassing and pointless." He also repeatedly referred to the government closure as "the speaker's shutdown."  Christie later announced that he would address the full legislature later at the statehouse on Saturday.

Prieto remained steadfast in his opposition, reiterating that he won't consider the plan as part of the budget process but would consider it once a budget is signed.  Referring to the shutdown as "Gov. Christie's Hostage Crisis Day One," Prieto said he has made compromises that led to the budget now before the Legislature.

 

"I am also ready to consider reasonable alternatives that protect ratepayers, but others must come to the table ready to be equally reasonable," Prieto said. "Gov. Christie and the legislators who won't vote 'yes' on the budget are responsible for this unacceptable shutdown. I compromised. I put up a budget bill for a vote. Others now must now do their part and fulfill their responsibilities."

Politics aside, the diplomaitc failure has immediate consequences for Jersey residents: Christie ordered nonessential services to close beginning Saturday. New Jerseyans were feeling the impact as the shutdown took effect, shuttering state parks and disrupting ferry service to Liberty and Ellis islands. Among those affected were a group of Cub Scouts forced to leave a state park campsite and people trying to obtain or renew documents from the state motor vehicle commission, among the agencies closed by the shutdown.

As funds run out elsewhere, it will only get worse.  Police were turning away vehicles and bicyclists at Island Beach state park in Ocean County.

A sign posted at the park entrance featured a photo of Prieto and the phone number of his district office in Secaucus, along with the caption: "This facility is CLOSED because of this man."

When asked about the sign, Christie spokesman Jeremy Rosen said the governor wanted to make sure people knew why the site was shuttered.  "Speaker Prieto singlehandedly closed state government," Rosen said, adding that the governor wanted to make sure families "knew that the facilities were closed and who is responsible."

Not all things will be affected: remaining open under the shutdown will be New Jersey Transit, state prisons, the state police, state hospitals and treatment centers as well as casinos, race tracks and the lottery. 

A major point of disagreement is the ongoing stalemate between Christie and lawmakers over whether to include legislation affecting the state's largest health insurer into the state budget.

Christie and Senate President Steve Sweeney agree on legislation to make over Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, including allowing the state insurance commissioner to determine a range for the company's surplus that if exceeded must be put to use benefiting the public and policyholders.  But Prieto opposes the plan, saying that the legislation could lead to rate hikes on the insurer's 3.8 million subscribers and that the legislation is separate from the budget.  Prieto has said he will leave open a vote on the $34.7 billion budget that remains deadlocked 26-25, with 24 abstentions, until those 24 abstentions change their mind.

Democratic Assemblyman Vince Mazzeo, of Northfield, was among those abstaining. He reasoned that if the governor did not get the Horizon bill, then nearly $150 million in school funding -- $9.6 million of which would go to his district -- would be line-item vetoed out of the budget.   And indeed, Christie said Friday during a news conference that he would slash the Democratic spending priorities if he did not get the Horizon bill as part of a package deal on the budget.  "You want me to wave a magic wand to get a budget?" Christie said. "I can't get a budget to my desk. Only the Senate and Assembly can get the budget to my desk."

But where things may get nasty quick, is that Christie said public workers should not expect any back pay. "Yeah, don't count on it." Christie said of furlough pay. "That was Jon 'I'll Fight For a Good Contract For You' Corzine. I ain't him."

Meanwhile, the fingerpointing has begun, including Democrats pointing at other Democrats.

"It seems like he's just being stubborn," Mazzeo said of Prieto. "With all due respect to the speaker, then there should be some type of negotiations." But Prieto said it's lawmakers - fellow Democrats - like Mazzeo who are to blame for the shutdown. He said he is willing to discuss the Horizon legislation but after the budget is resolved.

Christie has balked at the proposal because he says lawmakers plan to leave town to campaign for re-election and he will be a lame duck.  According to CBS, all 120 lawmakers face voters this year.

Finally, putting the sheer chaos of it all in context, Christie who is term-limited and is expected to be out of office by January, has his family staying for the holiday weekend in a state-owned house at Island Beach State Park. The park is closed because of the shutdown.


          Comment on "Will Sub-Saharan Africa's Population Hit 10 Billion? 15 Billion?" by Steve Sailer   
This strikes me as--in one form or another--the most likely long term outcome. Once the West goes down, the Chinese will be liberated from Western values "constraint". In addition, the death of the West will be a powerful reminder/reinforcement to the Chinese to be aggressively protective of their racial/national survival. If the West wises up...
          Comment on "Mark Zuckerberg Explains Why Globalist Billionaires Are Your Moral Betters" by Steve Sailer   
Most people ignore politics because they have a tiny impact on outcomes, they figure the ups and downs will even out and they'll be just fine. So they just go with the zeitgeist, which is whatever the media is pushing. Usually, they are right. Usually.
          Seasonal Warehouse Worker - Walmart - Riegelsville, PA   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. As our business needs change we will look towards our...
From Walmart - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 02:23:35 GMT - View all Riegelsville, PA jobs
          Flexible Warehouse Employee - Walmart - Riegelsville, PA   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. As our business needs change we will look towards our...
From Walmart - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 02:23:30 GMT - View all Riegelsville, PA jobs
          Seasonal Warehouse Employee - Walmart - Riegelsville, PA   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. As our business needs change we will look towards our...
From Walmart - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 02:23:09 GMT - View all Riegelsville, PA jobs
          Flexible Warehouse Worker - Walmart - Riegelsville, PA   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide. As our business needs change we will look towards our...
From Walmart - Thu, 09 Mar 2017 02:23:07 GMT - View all Riegelsville, PA jobs
           Petya virus analyzed, EU demands Google change search video    
Among the biggest tech stories this week, experts are searching for answers in the Petya cyber attack, the European Union hits Google with a $2.7 billion antitrust fine, and Nintendo reveals a new classic edition of the Super NES.
          Reading the Office of Legal Counsel on Emoluments: Do Super-Rich Presidents Get a Pass?    

 

I wrote last November that the Foreign Emoluments Clause “is on its face a national security provision designed to the protect the country from officers too enmeshed with foreign interests.” If the Justice Department’s recent court filing is to be believed, that protection is exceedingly limited. This new position marks a decisive break from the more conscientious approach long espoused by both the Comptroller General and the Office of Legal Counsel (OLC).

At the heart of the emoluments controversy is President Trump’s refusal to liquidate his business holdings. He has instead maintained ownership of the Trump Organization, a multibillion-dollar umbrella company with thousands of domestic and international investments, and placed the assets in a revocable trust managed by his sons Donald Trump, Jr. and Eric Trump. Trump now faces three lawsuits alleging that he is profiting from his business empire in violation of the Constitution. Three days after his inauguration, Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington (CREW), a government accountability watchdog group, filed the first suit in the Southern District of New York. This month, two more complaints were filed by the attorneys general of Washington D.C. and Maryland and 196 congressional Democrats, in federal district courts in Maryland and the District of Columbia, respectively.

All three suits center on the meaning and scope of the Foreign Emoluments Clause, which provides that “no person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept any present, Emolument, Office or Title of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince or foreign state” (U.S. Const. art. I, § 9, cl. 8). Citing Trump's business dealings with state governments and federal agencies, such as its lease on the Old Post Office Building that now houses the Trump International Hotel, two of the suits also allege violations of the Domestic Emoluments Clause. This provision applies specifically to the president and provides that he shall receive “for his Services” a fixed compensation during his tenure and not “any other Emolument from the United States, or any of [the states]” (U.S. Const. art. II, § 1, cl. 7).

Serious procedural challenges like standing notwithstanding, given the House and Senate’s failure to address head-on the risks posed by Trump’s financial conflicts pose, the lawsuits could prove important in forcing a much-needed conversation: Is Trump taking in profits in violation of the Constitution? And just as critically, are future presidents entitled to pull a Trump—or does the Constitution dictate that they, like Jimmy Carter, must sell their family peanut farms as a condition of taking office?

No Article III court has ever rendered an opinion on how either Emoluments Clause should be interpreted, though the Supreme Court has offered interpretations of the term “emoluments” as it appears in Foreign Emoluments Clause-related statutes periodically enacted by Congress since 1881. Because of the limited judicial precedent, the internal memoranda from the Comptroller General and the Office of Legal Counsel that have been made public over the years are among the most important sources of guidance we have on emoluments issues. And though these memoranda do not directly address the question posed by the Trump business empire, making some amount of inference and legwork necessary, in critical respects they quite clearly contradict the sweeping defense that the Justice Department put forward this month in its 70-page motion to dismiss the CREW case against Trump.

The key issue in these suits—once you get behind a set of justiciability questions that may prove dispositive—is what constitutes an emolument (though with respect to the Foreign Emoluments Clause there’s also some disagreement about what kind of entity constitutes a “foreign state”). In plain English, we are looking at an exotic presidential twist on the biggest and oldest challenge to enforcing any anticorruption law: What counts? Do the forbidden “emoluments” cover only goodie boxes, blatant quid pro quo arrangements, and employment-related compensation? Or are the profits that Trump enjoys by way of his business transactions also prohibited when they come from foreign states and domestic government entities? And if the latter, more expansive definition is the appropriate one, are the profits prohibited only when the take is in excess of  “fair-market-value”—and if so, does that definition serve as a meaningful limitation when at issue are luxury goods whose value or sales may be inflated by the fact that Trump is president and the products are prominently branded with his name?

Predictably, the dispute has taken the form of a battle for the original meaning of “emoluments.” An array of historical materials support both a limited and broad definition. The two possible interpretations are well summed up by the Oxford English Dictionary, which provides two definitions dating back to the Founding: “1. Profit or gain arising from station, office, or employment . . . . 2. Advantage, benefit, comfort.”

The Justice Department, like Trump’s lawyers at Morgan Lewis, latches onto the first definition  to argue that “the Emoluments Clauses apply only to the receipt of compensation for personal services and to the receipt of honors and gifts based on official position.” That is, President Trump is precluded only from receiving benefits in exchange for services provided to a foreign state in his official capacity as president, or—and this is crucial, given the subject matter of the OLC opinions—services provided “in a capacity akin to an employee of a foreign state.”

The plaintiffs in the three suits, on the other hand, argue for the much more expansive definition. Marshaling its own set of historical evidence, CREW asserts that emoluments are "anything of value, including money, permits, approvals, tax benefits, any other benefits, and anything else monetary or nonmonetary, regardless of whether it is given in exchange for goods or services, and regardless of whether it is part of a transaction at, above, or below market rates."

A close examination of the relevant Comptroller and OLC opinions reveals that the current Justice Department is reading the Emoluments Clauses too narrowly, while CREW and the other plaintiffs are reading them too broadly. None of the opinions approves the receipt of benefits that can even arguably be attributed to the prestige or influence conferred by an office, and together they do not support the Justice Department’s claim that presidents may, as a categorical matter, collect profits from business transactions with foreign entities and domestic government entities as long as fair value is extracted on both sides. But notwithstanding the plaintiffs’ hard pull in the other direction, the opinions also suggest that presidents may in limited cases accept certain fixed benefits—as I will explain, these might be pensions from the U.S. state that used to employ them or money damages from a foreign country against which, in a past life, they successfully won a judgment. The key is that those benefits cannot be subject to foreign or domestic government manipulation or adjustment in connection with the presidential office.

This happens to be a sensible position that accords with what the opinions repeatedly underscore as the purpose of the Emoluments Clauses and the ultimate touchstone for interpreting their meaning: “to prevent corruption and foreign influence” and to bar “payments which have a potential of influencing or corrupting the integrity of the recipient.”

 

Why Language About Emoluments Is Easily Misused

A threshold issue before turning to the OLC literature is the confusion created by cherry-picking historical materials without consideration of their factual context. For example, in its motion to dismiss, the Justice Department followed the lead of some scholars in pulling some Supreme Court language that suggests the term “emoluments” applies only to salary and other duty-related benefits. Most notably, in Hoyt v. United States, 51 U.S. 109 (1850), the Court defines emoluments as “every species of compensation or pecuniary profit derived for a discharge of the duties of office” (emphasis added).

But in Hoyt, the Supreme Court was specifically asked to decide what constitutes an “emolument of office” per a statute governing Treasury Department collectors in their official capacity; the case did not require the Court to consider or rule on the existence of emoluments of other kinds. This is a key point for purposes of properly construing any Comptroller or OLC opinion that cites Hoyt and regurgitates its definition of “emoluments.” These opinions, like Hoyt, have to be read with an eye to their facts: they do not assert that “emoluments” must derive directly from discharge of duty; rather, the kind of emoluments at issue in those opinions was the kind derived for discharge of duty. As a consequence, the reliance on Hoyt in these opinions does not serve as evidence of a limiting principle for emoluments in general.

In short, as pointed out by the plaintiffs and by assorted scholars, the proper question for purposes of discerning the historical scope of “emoluments” is not whether the term could be interpreted in a restricted way, to refer only to benefits derived from discharging the duties of an office, but whether it was necessarily so interpreted at the time the Emoluments Clauses were drafted. As John Mikhail has painstakingly documented, the answer is no—and we don’t have to look at secondary sources, however authoritative (e.g., Black’s Dictionary) to draw that conclusion. Consider, for example, some of the constitutions ratified during the first of two major waves of state constitution-making in the Founding decade. Several included “common benefits clauses” that used the word “emoluments” in a way that simply defies narrow interpretation. The Pennsylvania Constitution (1776) provides: “That government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, protection and security of the people, nation or community; and not for the particular emolument of advantage of any single man, family or sett [sic] of men, who are a part only of that community[.]” Very similar language appears in the Virginia (1776), Vermont (1777), and New Hampshire (1784) constitutions. Far more elaborate historical arguments demonstrating the broad uses of the term have been presented elsewhere: see here, here and here. The bottom line is that there is an abundance of primary Founding-era material making use of the broad definition of emoluments, so it is wrong to use language from fact-bound case law to assert that the term is an inherently limited one.

 

The Plaintiffs Define “Emoluments” Too Broadly

Does that mean, as plaintiffs assert, that all types of benefits conferred on the president by foreign countries and U.S. states are prohibited emoluments? According to the Comptroller and OLC opinions, clearly not.

A number of opinions explain that officers do not need to forego fixed benefits to which they are entitled for reasons manifestly unrelated to and uninfluenced by their office. This is a common-sense interpretation of the Clauses that avoids rigidity for rigidity’s sake, where denial of benefits would do nothing to serve the Clauses’ anti-corruption, anti-influence purpose.

For instance, the Comptroller and the OLC each independently concluded that President Ronald Reagan could collect ordinary retirement benefits from California, where he had served as the state governor, without violating the Domestic Emoluments Clause’s prohibition against the receipt of “emoluments” from a State. In its 1983 opinion, the Comptroller determined that President Reagan’s pension from California “cannot be construed as being in any manner received in consequence of his possession of the Presidency.” Coming to the same conclusion in its earlier 1981 opinion, the OLC also noted that “those [retirement] benefits are not emoluments in the constitutional sense” and their receipt does not “violate the spirit of the Constitution.” To support its reasoning, the OLC in turn relied on a 1964 opinion (not published) where it similarly decided the estate of President Kennedy was entitled to the naval retirement pay that had accrued during his presidency. Interpreting the Foreign Emoluments Clause “in the light of its basic purposes and principles,” it concluded he could receive payments to which he was entitled as a matter of law “prior to his taking office.”

The same principles support allowing officers to collect on certain kinds of money judgments, even from foreign powers. In a 1955 opinion, the Comptroller decided that an attorney in the Justice Department could receive a lump sum payment and lifetime annuity from the German government for his wrongful removal from the judgeship he held before he emigrated to the United States, as provided by German indemnification legislation. The Comptroller reasoned that those payments did not constitute emoluments from his former office, but rather “represent damages payable as a direct result of a moral and legal wrong.” Turning to its “spirit of the Constitution” analysis, the Comptroller had no trouble determining the payments were not problematic: they were “obviously . . . not intended to influence him as an officer of the United States,” were made under laws not specific to him, and were not payments voluntarily made by the German government but rather mandatory indemnification required by the Allied powers. In a 1954 opinion on the same matter, the OLC came to a slightly different place—the payments were not permitted to the extent they amounted to German retiree benefits—but like the Comptroller, it found that damages intended to redress injury were not prohibited emoluments.

Note what these opinions have in common: they generally allow the officer in question to collect payments or benefits that, patently, have nothing to do with and cannot possibly have been affected by his U.S. office. That 1983 Comptroller opinion put it best, and contains a line worth repeating: President Reagan was entitled to his pension because it “c[ouldn’t] be construed as being in any manner received in consequence of his possession of the Presidency.”

Applying this general rule, it makes sense that presidents are permitted to invest in U.S. Treasury bonds; and the rule also explains why wealth management solutions like blind trusts have long been accepted as workable resolutions to problems of conflict of interest. But it certainly doesn’t provide clearance for all profits derived from discretionary, “fair-market-value” transactions where the president is obviously and individually on one end of the sale.

 

The Justice Department Defines “Emoluments” Too Narrowly

A key move in the Justice Department’s brief is to rely heavily on a point of dubious significance: it asserts that “in every published OLC or Comptroller General opinion in which proposed conduct was determined to involve prohibited emoluments, the determination involved an employment relationship (or a relationship akin to an employment relationship) with the foreign government.”

If you think about it, there’s at least one common-sense explanation for the limited precedent: In general, the government employees on whose behalf these opinions were sought probably didn’t own hotel chains, lucrative licensing agreements, or hundreds of trademarks from which they derived significant foreign-based or domestic government-based income. Their thing of value, as civil servants, was their skill set, and thus the relevant question was whether they were constitutionally permitted to lend out that skill set to foreign governments or organizations with foreign state ties for payment.

A 1986 OLC opinion written by then-Deputy Assistant Attorney General Samuel Alito cuts against the assertion that whether the profit in question is derived from employment or personal services should be, by itself, dispositive. There, Alito determined that a NASA employee could indeed accept a fee for reviewing a PhD candidate's thesis for an Australian university. To get to this conclusion, Alito made two significant moves. First, uncertain as to whether a public university should be regarded a "foreign state," Alito instead decided to turn to the features of the proposed consultancy and consider whether they "raise[d] the kind of concern . . . that motivated" the prohibition’s enactment. This marks a functional, purpose-driven approach to the question of permissible benefits. Second, he suggested the following facts weigh against finding the fee a prohibited emolument: (1) the NASA scientist was not selected because of his position with the U.S. government, (2) the fee was an ordinary amount given the service to be rendered, (3) there was no reason for the officer to have "direct contact" with the university officials, and (4) the consultancy was "limited both in time and in substantive scope," and no "continuing relationship" was anticipated.

Note that the fact the scientist would be acting in an employment or personal services capacity did not automatically render the payment an emolument. This is the key takeaway from this opinion, and it is at odds with the Justice Department’s claim that employment is the make-or-break issue when it comes to determining whether a benefit or payment is an emolument. Second, consider the implications of the first and fourth points Alito highlighted. The scientist’s selection for the job and associated payment had nothing to do with his U.S. office, which is not a conclusion that can be readily drawn about the services purchased by foreign and state government employees newly flocking to Trump International Hotel. It may suggest the permissibility of accepting profits from truly routine transactions by truly routine hotel customers, including some government diplomats—but this possibility is undercut by Alito’s reference to the extremely limited nature of the permitted relationship and transaction in question.

The Justice Department is understandably leaning hard on the idea that an emolument must be received specifically as a function of office or employment. After all, without this very specific qualification, its argument for the permissibility of accepting profits from ordinary transactions falls apart. Two OLC opinions make this clear.

A 1982 OLC opinion determined that the Foreign Emoluments Clause barred an employee of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from working on his leave time for an American firm contracted by a Mexican government agency to review the design of a government-owned nuclear power plant. And a 1993 OLC opinion concluded that law firm partners serving as non-government advisors on the Administrative Conference of the United States could not accept partnership earnings “where some portion of that share is derived from the partnership’s representation of a foreign government” without triggering the constitutional prohibition. In the 1993 opinion, the OLC actually dismissed the argument that the conference member was not subject to the foreign government's “control” as “not decisive.” Instead, the OLC concluded that the portion of partnership profits the conference member would receive "would be a function of the amount paid to the firm by the foreign government," such that "the partnership would in effect be a conduit for that government." Acceptance of that portion of income was therefore a prohibited emolument (OLC reconsidered this opinion in 2010, but only with respect to whether the members held an “Office of . . . Trust” for purposes of the Foreign Emoluments Clause).

In these opinions, the OLC simply did not care that there was nothing out of the ordinary about the payments in these cases from a transactional or fair-market perspective. This runs contrary to the crux of the Justice Department’s argument for the innocuousness of Trump’s business-related foreign and domestic government income.

The textual kicker in all this is that even accepting the Justice Department’s insistence that “emolument” is best read to mean “profit arising from an office or employ” (Barclay’s A Complete and Universal English Dictionary on a New Plan (1774)), it doesn’t follow that all ordinary business transactions are okay: What if those transactions are, in number or value, enhanced by the prestige of the president’s office? Couldn’t the profit thereby derived then constitute “profit arising from an office or employ”? [Update, 5:17 pm: This is a line of argument that Marty Lederman compellingly and more thoroughly details here.]

It is to prevent this reading that the Justice Department argues that prohibited benefits must arise not just from the office but from the provision of services pursuant to that office. But this argument relies on a stunted conception of the power that an "Office of Profit or Trust" confers. To lift an example wholesale from Ben Wittes: If Trump owned a nondescript hotdog truck outside the White House that charged the same price for hotdogs as any other foodtruck and sold them to some incidental foreign customers, that would not be problematic under this definition of emoluments. If the truck were Trump-branded and either charged inflated prices or enjoyed inflated sales because Trump is president, and Saudi potentates lined up to put cash in his register, that would seem to constitute impermissible “profit arising from an office,” as a textual matter and in view of the historic Comptroller and OLC perspective.

At base, this is what plaintiffs are claiming—that the profits Trump is enjoying “aris[es] from” his office—so “aris[e] from” may be a definitional phrase the Justice Department is interpreting too narrowly. Trump’s status as the most powerful man in the world affects his business transactions, which are self-branded to boot. Not only is he enjoying booming business at his exclusive properties, in part thanks to foreign guests reportedly seeking to get in the president’s good graces, but he has also won Chinese trademark protection that, according to plaintiffs, he would not have received had he not become president.

Finally, on a practical note, notice the perverse upshot of the Justice Department’s fixation on employment and personal services as the place where the river divides. This assertion that payment for goods and business-related services is permissible but payment for employment and “personal services” is not means that a president can’t profit off his brain or body when it comes to cash from foreign sources or U.S. government entities, but can, without limitation, profit off the brains and bodies of those he can afford to employ in his private capacity. It’s what you might call a constitutional free pass for super-rich presidents.

The Comptroller and OLC opinions do not support such a result. They repudiate it.

***

Ultimately, the Justice Department’s view of emoluments marks a departure from the public Comptroller and OLC opinions in at least two critical respects. First, the new position is a clear abrogation of the practical “spirit of the Constitution” analysis on which the Comptroller and OLC have consistently relied to ensure a stringent rather than forgiving interpretation of what constitutes an impermissible benefit or undue influence (see, e.g., 1955 Comptroller Opinion, 1981 OLC Opinion, 1983 Comptroller Opinion; see also OLC 1962, noting “the sweeping nature of the constitutional prohibition”; OLC 1980, citing 1902 Attorney General Opinion stating the Foreign Emoluments Clause is “directed against every kind of influence by foreign governments upon officers of the United States” and the “prohibition should be given the broadest possible scope and application”). Second, the Justice Department’s quite specific argument that the president can profit from employing people to do business with foreign countries and government entities in the United States amounts to a strange carve-out, one that allows extremely wealthy officers with people in their employ to cash out as they wish on the advantages that the prestige of their office confers, without any consideration whatsoever of the sources of that cash. This interpretation is flatly at odds with executive branch tradition: I have yet to see a single opinion that has permitted an officer to collect profits even arguably enhanced by the power of his office, much less categorically benefit from discretionary, price-indeterminant transactions that foreign governments and U.S. government entities may enter into at will.

Note the issues I did not address here. What is not (yet) a point of debate in these particular lawsuits is whether these constitutional provisions apply to the president at all. The Domestic Emoluments Clause applies to the president by its express terms, and in its recent motion, the Justice Department doesn’t dispute CREW's claim, or the OLC’s preexisting determination, that the more obliquely phrased Foreign Emoluments Clause applies to the president as well (and notwithstanding the occasional argument to the contrary).

In addition, as the suits proceed in federal court, we can expect much of the legal discussion to focus on jurisdictional hurdles. There’s a strong argument that the courts don’t have a role to play, and that presidential corruption rising to the level of an emoluments violation is a political question whose resolution properly lies with Congress. Though the congressional suit spearheaded by Senator Richard Blumenthal and Representative John Conyers, Jr. alleges that Trump has failed to come to Congress for requisite permission in accepting foreign emoluments, Congress’s best recourse be impeachment proceedings. (Or if it so chose, Congress could avail itself of a lot of options short of impeachment, but in the words of Charles Black, Jr., circa 1974, “what an enormous if.” Recall that the House of Representatives has the power to demand Trump’s tax returns but has not exercised it.)

But as for the substantive question of whether the Comptroller and OLC of yore would have signed off on the Justice Department’s blessing of all monies flowing in by way of business transactions, the answer is “no.”


          What Time Of Day Is Best To Take L-carnetine   
"They make magic with the money ..."


I found the following comment, signed Corto , in an article Francis Velen (Blog from the rostrum of Geneva), about the volatile situation in Libya:


What Europeans do not see is that what happens in the 'nations' Arab is one thousandth of what the West will will take on the donut!

The Arab world and the West are just two sides of the same coin, you do not see that one side, some produce and other cars, they have oil!

You do not see that at the time the two would finally agree with a U.S. president pro-Arab, or rather pro-Iranian, is busting his nose while on the asphalt still warm in history.

You are all blind and you will see that this is just the beginning and it is not always the one who put the first goal wins the match. Frankly blindness among Arab and Western cowardice is white-hat-white hat and that he will happen if the Arabs come in a huge and incomprehensible civil war, millions of refugees in a Europe brink of bankruptcy. Here is the menu of this new century, a huge confusion in which, not only policies have no solution but did not see it coming so they anchored in corruption. Reread the comments Corto 2 years and you'll see that everything is there!

Personally when I see the UN, the European military powers did not intervene in Libya, so that everything passes was more than likely, I is not nothing wrong with Arab, on the contrary, they had the courage to confront their kleptomaniac monsters, bloodthirsty soulless and supported by the Swiss banks, but I see the sky of the Mediterranean does not planes Italian, French (Land of Human Rights) Domestic ( for once they have been used), or any civilized nation known as the Libyan civilians are being slaughtered, I even shame not to be an Arab!

Is Israel going to do the job? Ban ki Moon has 10,000 soldiers in an attempt to declare a civil war in Côte d'Ivoire, can not, this dog, sending its planes to Libya to calm things down?

We are in Geneva, a city where all the money from Qaddafi sleeps badly bloodied and where the UN welcomes daily catering trucks from Richmond, and nobody has exploded this puppet theater on a budget of tens of billion per year!

This world is screwed up, they screwed up is because you're not even fucking show your frustration on the net! it is fucked because tonight there is not much fats 10'000 Geneva outside the gates of the UN that trap these pests from reality!

A Federal Councillor who wore the headscarf of shame and not even his friend Gaddafi condemned the massacres of civilians, while she wept for not seeing the funds placed Gaddafi in Geneva migrate other paradise!

He would do what the Libyans are in Geneva and all the dictatorships in the world are buried! All the dirty money that junk sleep in Geneva!

Another little surprise, a film sponsored by Polanski on Switzerland, 23 minutes of normal madness! Here, the cultural genius is not subsidized.

A month ago wikileaks should publish documents involving Swiss banks in the dirty business, no one knows why nothing came officially break the web, but copies exist! Revenge is a dish best eaten warm.

Friends Libyan, Egyptian and Tunisian peoples all future free from the grip of dirty money and looted, remember the pressure on the Swiss political, they make magic with the money, they transform the billions millions when it comes to make the people!

Example; marcos would leave 70 million in Swiss banks, the reality was quite different, marcos left several billion! but they are gone as soon as they were to return to the Filipino people!

Corto

The
21/02/2011

          Prestige Pressure Cooker Relief Valve Repair   
Cree Egypt

A Cairene said the regime crisis

27/01/2011 The
Source: http://crisdegypte.blogs.liberation.fr/cairote/

Cairo, January 26, 2011. Second day of protests in Egypt after call webcast , and relayed by a few printed newspapers like Al Masry Al Youm and Al Shorouk. Until 25, no one knew what would happen and we joked about the revolution announced by dint of a joke. And what are you doing tomorrow? Ah, tomorrow, I revolution. But the joke was not one. We went down the street and have taken. It was so simple. Why wait so long.

The police intimidation and fear of dying tortured lead to paralysis. That is also simple to understand and that is why we cry. We live for thirty years in fear and falsehood. The Egyptians are friendly, hospitable, peaceful and a joker. Pardon me, reader. It was a lie. We live in fear. Fear of displeasing. Fear of dying of hunger. Afraid to say something wrong and being raped, beaten, humiliated in a police station or in the street before our families and our neighbors. No, reader, Egypt is not alone in moderate Middle East is one of the most sophisticated didacture, the finest, most skillful and most vicious. His talent as despicable? Control information and control what you, outside, think of it. The real talent of Egypt is that of a Master senseless filtering information, disinformation, image creation, isolation of any event likely to snowball. Courage is viral, it is said, when the dictatorship was provided with an effective antidote, the total control of society. Official sources, security forces and Egyptian intelligence count 1,500,000 people. By themselves, they represent nearly 2% of the population.

Scoop. The demonstration on January 25, 2011 is not the first. Events, there are almost daily and for years. 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011. Everywhere the people shouted his anger in the black absolute misinformation. In May 2008, Mahalla, a provincial town famous for its textile industry, thousands of workers without pay had taken possession of their factories, the street, pushed the anti-riot trucks and debunked a giant portrait of President Hosni Mubarak . In Egypt, people have seen these images do not meet the Gaumont Opera. During the events, and to control information leaks, police spotters were posted on trains and checked one by one the passengers bound for Mahalla to arrest journalists and bloggers. Challiss McDonough, VOA, was one of them.

the benefit of his own safety, the Mubarak regime leaves nothing to chance. The state allocates 15 billion Egyptian pounds (2 billion euros) to the Interior cons 4.5 billion (64 million) for education and $ 5 billion for health (71 million). Control information, therefore, at any price. Stop. Beat. Kill. Entertain.

Since January 25, the national television channels broadcast videos, soap operas and shows how essential O on rare tropical. At twenty hours, they air-finally! - Images of riots ... Lebanon, as of course. To date, access to Internet by fixed line is almost stable, but the mobile Internet is much less. Access to Twitter has been blocked on January 25 and then regained 26 to 23:00. January 26, facebook was blocked in the day then restored. Order of the Ministry of Interior, the telephone relay Mobinil and Vodafone are immediately blocked in sensitive areas, that is to say where it manifests .

But that manifests and has called for demonstrations? The Muslim Brotherhood? Fundamentalists? Triple nonsense and balderdash! Shake the specter of Islamism was the sinister strategy of the regime to justify its dictatorship in the eyes of thirty world. That we stop, out of pity and respect for those who pay for their daily bread and their lives, to support this lie worn to the bone. Those who appear, they are Egyptians free, exasperated, united, handled by individual, small, large, Muslims, Christians, atheists, rich and poor. This unit, the slogans that I translate in another post demonstrated forcefully, gaiety, humor and poetry.

But it is difficult, therefore, to communicate, coordinate, inform each other, to know where we are, what we are. You who are outdoors, sometimes in more than we know. These cries of Egypt, I will tell you what I see and read your comments to inform my countrymen on what prevents us from seeing. It is 11:10 p.m.

hours Local. An hour ago Talaat Harb Square (city center), was plunged into darkness. When the police cut the power, it is about to pull the crowd. The following

soon.

          Senate backs bill to slash car-tab taxes, eliminate dubious $12 billion price tag   

The Senate today took direct aim at Sound Transit’s controversial and inflated car-tab taxes with a vote to send an amended version of Senate Bill 5893 back to the House of Representatives for consideration. The bill, sponsored by Sen. Steve O’Ban, would slash car-tab taxes in the Sound Transit taxing district by 55 percent and […]

The post Senate backs bill to slash car-tab taxes, eliminate dubious $12 billion price tag appeared first on Steve O'Ban.


          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project....
          The Empowerment Endowment   
How have South Africa’s businesses engaged with BEE legislation? This has often been a contentious issue and the goalposts have kept moving. However, one of the exciting key outcomes has been the establishment of 27 new grant-making foundations in South Africa, mostly in the last two years, that have been endowed with a surprisingly massive amount of R32.6-billion in assets that will support charitable causes in perpetuity. This information emerged from a ground-breaking report entitled “The Empowerment Endowment” released by Intellidex, a financial research company, which gathered data from 35 companies and explored what value has been created specifically for charitable recipients through BEE deals, “including community trusts, existing charities and newly established foundations”.
          Billionaire Shipping Magnate Buys Tankers to Prepare for Oil Rebound   
John Fredriksen, a billionaire shipping magnate, is looking to buy oil tanker companies. He wants to prepare for a rebound in oil prices and expand his business empire. Fredriksen wants to spend more than $2 billion on acquisitions to overtake his competition as the largest shipping company in the world. Costas Paris writes: “We used […]
          Facebook To Buy Navigation App Waze For Up To $1 Billion [Rumor]   

Facebook is reportedly in advanced talks to acquire mobile navigation app Waze for between $800 million and $1 billion. Talks between the two companies began around six months ago, and a term sheet has already been signed, according to business daily Calcalist. Unlike traditional GPS navigation apps, Waze is community-based and uses maps and traffic data […]

(via Cult of Mac - Tech and culture through an Apple lens)


          Washington and Berlin on a Collision Course   

The Russia sanctions bill that passed the US Senate by 98:2 on June 15 is a bombshell; it directly demonizes the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, under the Baltic Sea, which is bound to double Gazprom’s energy capacity to supply gas to Europe.

The 9.5 billion euro pipeline is being financed by five companies; Germany's Uniper and Wintershall; Austria's OMV; France’s Engie; and Anglo-Dutch Shell. All these majors operate in Russia, and have, or will establish, pipeline contracts with Gazprom.


          China sanguine as Trump-Xi 'bromance' sours over North Korea, Taiwan   

China sanguine as Trump-Xi 'bromance' sours over North Korea, TaiwanBy Ben Blanchard and Christian Shepherd BEIJING (Reuters) - China reacted relatively calmly on Friday after a series of diplomatic broadsides by the United States, expressing anger over new arms sales by Washington to Taiwan but hoping ties could soon be brought back on track. U.S. officials have said President Donald Trump is growing increasingly frustrated with China over its inability to restrain North Korea's arms and missile programs. This week, the United States imposed sanctions on two Chinese citizens and a shipping company for helping North Korea's weapons programs, announced a $1.4 billion arms sale for Taiwan, and said it would like sick Chinese dissident Liu Xiaobo to be treated "elsewhere".



          Should We Kill The Dollar Bill?    
Our story begins last month inside a busy Washington, D.C. subway station plastered with posters of giant dollar bills. One of them says: "Tell Congress to stop wasting time trying to eliminate the dollar bill." Another asks: "Do you heart the dollar?" Political fights in the nation's capital normally involve billions or even trillions, not single dollars. What's going on here? This being Washington, there's a back story. The $70,000 ad blitz was part of a small lobbying war over the fate of the dollar bill. On one side, leading a legislative charge to eliminate the dollar bill and replace it with a dollar coin, are Sens. Tom Harkin, D-Iowa, and John McCain, R-Ariz. "The most important thing is it's just more efficient. It's way more efficient than a paper dollar," Harkin says. "Canada has a coin that's worth $2 ... Switzerland has one worth about $5... And yet, what have we got? We got a 25-cent piece." It's worth noting that Harkin and McCain both represent states that are home to
          White House Kills Dollar Coin Program   
The federal government will stop minting unwanted $1 coins, the White House said Tuesday. The move will save an estimated $50 million a year. Earlier this year, we reported on the mountain of $1 coins sitting unused in government vaults. The pile-up — an estimated 1.4 billion coins — was caused by a 2005 law that ordered the minting of coins honoring each U.S. president. We calculated that the unwanted coins had cost taxpayers some $300 million dollars to make. There were so many coins piling up that the Federal Reserve was redesigning a vault in Texas to help hold them all. We got to see a vault in Baltimore. It was the size of a soccer field, filled with bags of dollar coins. You can see the presidents' faces on the coins. Andrew Jackson, John Adams, James Buchanan. The mint is only about half way through the presidents. And the pile of coins has been growing. The mint makes enough of each new coin to meet initial demand. But about 40% of those coins get returned to the Fed, where
          Wide Scale Hadoop Adoption   
Good thoughts on the 'why' at the link.  Towards a universal part of IT infrastructure?

Opinion:  Digital transformation driving wide-scale Hadoop adoption  By  Marc Wilczek
The global Hadoop market has witnessed skyrocketing adoption in the recent years and is expected to reach US $84.6 billion in revenue by 2021, equaling a stellar compound annual growth rate of 63.4 percent between 2016 and 2021, according to an Allied Market Research report. ...  " 
          Has the Government's Welcome Home Loan scheme under-performed because of banks' relaxed credit policies?   

By Gareth Vaughan

Housing New Zealand's Welcome Home Loan scheme has not grown as the Government wanted it to.

We've had senior government ministers eagerly promote it, and a bank CEO extolling its virtues to participating lenders by pointing out; "It really carries no risk on our balance sheet because it's all government guaranteed."

The ministers were John Key and Nick Smith, and the CEO quoted above is SBS Bank's Shaun Drylie.

Housing NZ says, as of May 31 this year, it was "at risk" for 6,650 loans through Welcome Home Loan, with an original value of $1.469 billion. That's 150 less loans than the 6,800 - with an original loan value of $1.335 billion - at June 30, 2013. The drop, Housing NZ says, is because more loans have been repaid than taken on.

June 2013 is just before the Reserve Bank restrictions on banks' high loan to value ratio (LVR) residential mortgage lending were unveiled. Welcome Home Loans are excluded fom the Reserve Bank's LVR restrictions.

The Welcome Home Loan scheme launched in July 2003 as a two year pilot project with Kiwibank, known as “In Reach.” In July 2005, the scheme was opened to other lenders, and branded “Welcome Home Loan.” Eight lenders are actively using the Housing New Zealand scheme today. These are SBS, Kiwibank, Westpac, The Co-operative Bank, TSB Bank, NZCU Baywide, the Nelson Building Society, and the New Zealand Employees' Credit Union. 

As Housing NZ puts it; "Welcome Home Loan is offered by lenders, supported by Housing New Zealand, and, designed for first-home buyers who can afford to make regular repayments on a home loan, but have trouble saving for a large deposit. With Welcome Home Loan you only need a 10% deposit, not a 20% deposit as required by most lenders. Housing New Zealand does not issue the loan. This is done through normal lenders such as selected banks and credit unions. Housing New Zealand underwrites the loan for the lender [through lenders' mortgage insurance]. Individual applicants are required to meet the lender’s specific lending criteria. Income and house price caps apply."

'Trebling the number of loans'

Prior to the launch of the LVR restrictions, the Welcome Home Loan scheme had been going backwards. During the June 2013 year, Housing NZ settled 845 new loans, down from 1,358 the previous year.

The Reserve Bank announced on August 20, 2013 that high LVR restrictions would kick-in from October 1 that year, limiting lending to borrowers with deposits of less than 20%. Following that move the Welcome Home Loan scheme appeared, unsurprisingly, to gain in popularity given low equity loans made through the scheme are excluded from the Reserve Bank's restrictions.

Announcing Co-operative Bank's signing up to the scheme in April 2014, Building and Housing Minister Nick Smith said; "I am encouraging other banks to also join the scheme. I want as many New Zealanders as possible to have access to this Government assistance to buy their first home." At that stage ASB said its membership to the Welcome Home Loan Scheme was "currently under consideration." However three years on ASB hasn't joined, with a spokeswoman saying no decisions have been made to apply for entry. A Housing NZ spokesman said no applications from lenders wanting to join the scheme are currently under consideration.

Smith's comments came after Prime Minister John Key announced on August 11, 2013, a week before the Reserve Bank publicly unveiled its LVR move; “We will also expand the [Welcome Home Loan] scheme to treble the number of loans from about 850 loans a year to 2,500 a year."

Both in August 2013 and again in July last year as the Reserve Bank changed the LVR restrictions, Smith announced increases in house price caps for the scheme. In a rising property market, they have gone from $350,000 in Auckland, for example, to $600,000 for an existing house and $650,000 for a new one.

As it sought to "screw the scrum in favour of first home buyers," the Government also aligned the scheme's income caps with those of the KiwiSaver HomeStart scheme at $85,000 for a single person and $130,000 for a couple.

In November 2015 Smith said; "The 287 Welcome Home Loans issued for this latest quarter is also a record and shows how this programme, combined with HomeStart, is assisting families into home ownership."

'A relaxation of lenders' credit policies'

But that hasn't continued, with the 2,500 a year target looking a pipe dream. So what's going on?

Housing NZ's latest annual report, for the year to June 2016, says; "Uptake for Welcome Home Loans was lower than expected due to a relaxation of lenders' credit policies, allowing the provision of standard bank loans, rather than a Welcome Home Loan. This meant banks in the scheme did not have to draw on this product as much as in the past. Monthly demand for the Welcome Home Loan was steady over the year, but was around 10% lower than the previous year." 

Interestingly in its Financial Stability Report last month the Reserve Bank said; "Some banks have tightened lending standards over the past six months [See chart below]. In particular, banks are being more selective about their lending for residential property developments as capacity constraints in the construction industry and rising costs have contributed to increased credit risk in the sector."

The Welcome Home Loan insurance premium is 2.2% of the loan value, of which 1% is paid by the borrower and 1.2% by the Government. The Mortgage Insurance Scheme is assessed, by an actuary, three times a year to ensure the mortgage insurance liability is sufficient to cover any future claims, Housing NZ says. As of June 30 last year the total estimated liability was $29 million. At that point 40% of the original value of settled loans was with Kiwibank.

*This article was first published in our email for paying subscribers early on Tuesday morning. See here for more details and how to subscribe.


          Does Auckland have the infrastructure capacity to host the America's cup? Alex Tarrant reviews two of the Mexican stand-offs involving central government, the Auckland Council, the Airport and Watercare   

By Alex Tarrant

Emirates Team New Zealand’s America’s Cup win has certainly fired up the Auckland infrastructure debate (as if it needed more fuel). Every interested party is now reviewing their wish list trying to figure out whether their pet project could be completed in four years. Rail, roads, houses and water pipes.

The 2021 event (Auckland will also hold the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit that year) might be a Godsend for getting even more Auckland infrastructure work on the move (if we can find the labourers needed – don’t mention foreigners!).

But the multiple Mexican stand-offs between the Government, Auckland Council and other parties like Auckland Airport and Watercare need to be resolved. The key in each dispute is who pays for what, when, why and how.

This (rather long) column focuses on two of those stand-offs. Rail to Auckland Airport from the CBD, and cheaper, faster provision of water services for new housing in Auckland – including boosting incentives for cheaper densification. On Rail, there is a simple answer to get things moving if the project would indeed lead to benefits. On water, revised legislation debated in Parliament last week provides some hope.

Rail to the airport

Politicians were quick to jump on the success of ETNZ earlier this week and the expected economic benefits to Auckland from holding the Cup in 2021. The Green Party used the occasion to question the Transport Minister on whether Auckland would have capacity to host the event.

“Will the government start building rail to the airport sooner, if Auckland hosts the next America’s Cup regatta, or will Aucklanders still have to wait 30 years?” Julie Anne Genter asked Simon Bridges.

Bridges’ answers focussed on the current plan of protecting a sole purpose route that will originally be marked out for a busway to the Airport. This showed the government was prioritising the project, he claimed, being careful to add it was difficult to explain what the timeframe could be for progressing to rail. This would be driven by demand and usage numbers, Bridges said.

So why not just kick-start the project of rail to the airport? If central government were to lead on funding, couldn’t others like the Council be given time to come up with their share? The reason this National-led government isn’t making any firm commitments like this is down to the principle of, whoever benefits should pay.

Steven Joyce, Simon Bridges and other Ministers have in recent months been talking more about the use of value uplift taxes to help fund new projects – rates will be higher in areas that profit from increased transportation links, for example. These could be residential rates paid by homeowners in areas with improved access to the CBD from a new road, which would have boosted the value of their property. They could also be imposed on commercial businesses that benefit from more foot-traffic due to being closer to, say, a new train station.

The government openly admits that a value uplift tax would have been a perfect fit for Auckland’s inner-city rail loop. But, because the loop was announced before Ministers could start spraying the idea around, they feel it would be a bit rude (think a vote-loser) to suddenly turn around and clamp such a tax on business owners close to where the new stations would be, regardless of the economics.

They have to find a project that hasn’t yet started, and which would clearly benefit the areas linked by the project. Penlink has been talked about. I also give you the Airport-City rail link.

However, Bridges and Joyce are engaged in a stand-off with Auckland Airport. ‘If you come to the table, then we will too.’

Auckland Airport would clearly benefit from any rail link with the city. So, Bridges et al are waiting for them to come to the party. If we’re talking light rail – trams – then Dominion Road businesses and residential properties should also benefit in value uplift.

It’s a stand-off though. If the airport argues against paying more because the benefits won’t be that great, then the government can turn around and say, ‘ok well that’s a good argument for not needing to build the new connection’. If the government just starts funding the link itself, then it runs the risk of no-one else coming to the party. They also don't want to be seen starting the project with inclusion of value-uplift taxes that no-one agrees on - that's not the way this government wants to work.

In effect, the sticking point is a matter of principle. It’s a principled Mexican stand-off. Or a prisoners’ dilemma in a low-security prison.

Water pipe dream

The next stand-off is a key component in Auckland’s housing debate. Water pipes. A couple of weeks ago I wrote about how the National Cabinet would love to take a swipe at the monopolistic, not-for-profit Watercare in Auckland. They’re getting nearer to it.

The Local Government Amendment Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2) was introduced last year by former Local Government Minister Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga. And boy was it popular. The Local Government Select Committee heard nearly 200 submissions on the Bill. They’ve now reported back with amendments. The Bill received a second reading last week.

The stand-off between local and central government on water pipes can best be summed up by a conversation between media and Local Government New Zealand a few weeks back. A lot of New Zealand’s water pipe infrastructure was put in in the 1960s, we were told. Those pipes had an expected lifetime of 60 years, so we’re heading towards an exponential renewals curve over the next 15 years for assets worth over $100 billion.

A couple of the journalists (including this correspondent) were a tad miffed by this. Did local councils know there was only a 60-year life span? “Yeah, they did,” was the reply. ““The renewals curve is not a surprise. But it’s here, now.”

So why haven’t councils planned over those 60 years to put replacement funds aside? The problem, we were told, was that in the 1960s a lot of the pipes were paid for by central government. Now, technically only local government is on the hook. “Under our current funding model, it’s rates and debt [to pay for it]. The issue becomes, is that a sustainable position? Our view is it is not.”

That’s why local government is calling on central government to agree to a co-funding model for the replacement of water pipes nationwide that are coming to the end of their working life (even though this was all known about for 60 years).

I asked Local Government New Zealand chairman Lawrence Yule whether they’d had any indications from central government that this could be done. He said central government had always indicated a willingness to look at it “but only once you’ve made sure what you’re doing currently is being done as efficiently as it can be.”

It’s a stand-off. Local government is refusing to consider how to fund replacement pipes until central government agrees to a co-funding model. Central government won’t agree to a co-funding model until local government gets its own house in order and ensures water services operations are as efficient as possible.

The issue got to a point where central government decided to try and take the initiative. This is where the Local Government Local Government Act Amendment Bill (No 2) comes in. Central government clearly believes things aren’t being done as efficiently as possible.

The Bill will allow various councils to band together to create Transport and Water Council Controlled Organisations (CCOs) to provide services across several local authorities. Scale. It will also give greater scope for re-organisation of CCOs. As now-Local Government Minister Anne Tolley put it in Thursday’s second reading, it provides “an opportunity for the sector to show their local strategic leadership, which may require hard decisions about difficult options in order to secure a positive future for their communities.”

Let’s take Watercare. In its submission on the Bill (co-submitted with Auckland Council), it argued that since its first fully operational year in 2011/12, it has reduced the cost of water delivery to Aucklanders compared the rag-tag pricing run previously by individual councils pre-Super City.

That’s true. The $1.30 per thousand litres was below the range of $1.31-$3.50 encompassing Rodney, North Shore, Waitakere, Auckland, Manukau and Franklin. Job well done. Scale worked. But since then, that cost has risen each year to $1.44 per thousand litres in 2016/17. That’s not what central government (or Auckland residents) wanted to see.

A 2015 Cabinet paper introducing the Amendment Bill reveals what some Cabinet Ministers really wanted to do. The Local Government Minister at the time highlighted the potential benefits of requiring Watercare to have to pay a dividend (“distribute surpluses”) to the Council. This could encourage more efficient pricing of water services and allow it better access to finance.

However, due to the prospect of the move not being supported by “the community,” the idea was not included. Indeed, when the Local Government Select Committee reported the Bill back to the House in June, Section 70 was there prohibiting the distribution of surpluses by water services CCOs.

A pity. There is some exciting stuff in there, though. Central government is aiming to be imposing a number of requirements that I’m told are aimed at drastically changing the way Watercare operates.

The Productivity Commission’s 2016 report, Using Land for Housing, helped. Looking at Watercare from a housing supply lens, the Commission raised a number of concerns and recommendations which will partly be tackled by the Bill.

Firstly, Watercare’s Infrastructure Growth Charges (IGCs) do not recover the full costs of growth (new pipes for new housing), the Commission pointed out. Although initially this could produce benefits for new home buyers not paying the full cost for water infrastructure, deficits will need to be recovered from somewhere. Recovery from existing residents will reduce community acceptance of growth, limiting the supply of infrastructure-enabled land, therefore contributing to higher house prices.

Watercare needed to change how it calculates charges to better reflect the underlying economic costs of supply in different locations and for different types of dwelling, the Commission said. This linked in with criticisms of Watercare’s model of charging flat fees.

“To the extent that certain types of development result in lower infrastructure costs than others, a flat charge will result in a cross-subsidy between different types of dwelling. This might result in a situation in which smaller and more affordable dwellings are cross-subsidising larger standalone dwellings.”

The Bill requires Watercare to shift away from the IGC model to a development contribution model. It has until 30 June 2018 at the latest to figure out how to best make the switch.

Meanwhile, the Commission urged Watercare to consider development agreements, which would enable private developers to take responsibility for building trunk infrastructure. It referenced research that developers may be able to provide infrastructure solutions at lower costs than Watercare, particularly due to ‘over specification’ required by Watercare.

“Watercare notes that development agreements have a range of advantages (eg, they provide a mechanism for bringing in private capital into the provision of public infrastructure) and disadvantages (eg, the time required to prepare and finalise the agreements, especially if more than one developer/landowner is involved). The obligation to consider requests from a developer to enter into development agreements and provide the developer with a written response would not compel Watercare and other CCOs to enter agreements where there are good reasons not to. But a requirement to set out in writing why a development agreement may not proceed would provide clarity and transparency about the reasons for the decision.”

The Bill doesn’t appear to go as far as the Commission would have hoped, but it does provide legislation for Watercare to be able to enter into development agreements.

Finally, the Commission appeared horrified that for both Auckland Transport and Watercare, “supply of infrastructure to support growth is not reflected in either organisation’s performance measures.”

“While the primary accountability documents for Watercare and Auckland Transport (the Statements of Intents) are broadly aligned with the Auckland Plan vision, they do not give effect to the specific objective in the Auckland Plan to increase the city’s supply of new dwellings,” it said.

“Auckland Transport and Watercare’s SOIs should be amended to include performance measures relating to the efficient roll-out of new infrastructure to support an increased supply of new dwellings.

“The regulatory and institutional framework around the water sector can be improved. Discipline and transparency around the pricing of water services, and better performance monitoring, would improve the ability of the water sector to support urban growth,” the Commission said.

The Bill includes provision for Council input on CCO statements of intent and for performance monitoring. Each CCO – ie Watercare – must provide its shareholders the opportunity to influence the direction of the organisation, and must provide a basis for the accountability of the directors to their shareholders for the performance of the organisation.

And that performance monitoring? A local authority must undertake regular performance monitoring to evaluate a CCO’s contribution to the achievement of the authority’s objectives for the organisation, the desired results set out in its SOI and the overall aims and outcomes of the local authority.

What’s yet to be seen, however, is whether the changes would have such an effect as to fix the pending funding crisis for water pipe replacement and extension. I would think not. But with this Bill, central and local government will both be able to tap the argument that councils and their organisations have reached, or will soon reach efficiency limits.

And that’s the trigger for central government coming to the funding party.


          Lyft drivers have generated over a quarter billion dollars in tips alone   
Now that is one enviable sum. Lyft drivers have cumulatively received over half a billion dollars, or 250 million dollars in tips. That is more than what some prominent startups raise in funding, or even, what many startups value themselves at. And yes, it is also more than what Uber drivers may have received over […]
          Worldwide Cloud IT Infrastructure Revenues Grew 14.9% To $8 Billion In First Quarter Of 2017, According To IDC   
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Cloud IT Infrastructure Tracker, vendor revenue from sales of infrastructure products (server, storage, and Ethernet switch) for cloud IT, including public and private cloud, grew 14.9% year over year in the first quarter of 2017 (1Q17), reaching $8 billion.
          Christie and top Democrat at impasse as gov't shutdown looms in NJ   
New Jersey lawmakers will try again to pass a nearly $35 billion budget on Friday, hours before a midnight deadline to avert a state government shutdown.
          MS looking to invest in Facebook   
Software Giant and makers of the Xbox console Microsoft are interested in buying 5% of online community site Facebook. For Facebook this would add an extra $15 billion in terms of value to the compan, which shot to fame in a very short time span. the actual value for the shares is an estimated $400 million.

Facebook, which is led by its 23-year-old Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg, wants to raise money to expand its operations.

Google is also rumored to have interest in Facebook.
          Water Street Tampa will go vertical in fall   
A joint venture linking Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and hockey team owner Jeffrey Vinik expects to break ground this year for a $3 billion redevelopment of 50 acres along the waterfront in downtown Tampa. Strategic Property Partners (SPP), a joint venture between Gates’s Cascade Investment, LLC, and Vinik, the owner of the National Hockey League’s Tampa Bay Lightning, plans the mixed-use, multi-phase development spanning nine million square feet, called Water Street Tampa. The first phase ... [more]
          Illinois House leader: No vote on budget this weekend   

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) — Illinois lawmakers returned to work Saturday after missing a key deadline to prevent the state from starting an unprecedented third consecutive fiscal year without a budget, but the House leader said a vote wouldn’t be taken over the weekend, meaning the state is entering dangerous territory. A $36.5 billion plan to […]

The post Illinois House leader: No vote on budget this weekend appeared first on WCBI TV |News Leader - Columbus, Tupelo, Starkville, North Mississippi.


          California Is Inching Closer to Single Payer Health Care. Is It Already Doomed? - Fortune   

Los Angeles Times

California Is Inching Closer to Single Payer Health Care. Is It Already Doomed?
Fortune
On Thursday, the California state Senate overwhelmingly passed a "single payer" health care bill (the vote was 23-14) that supporters claim would lead to universal coverage and lower medical costs for consumers. But the landmark legislation still has a ...
If California goes single-payer, what happens to insurance workers?89.3 KPCC
Single-payer healthcare plan advances in California Senate — without a way to pay its $400-billion tabLos Angeles Times
California's Single-Payer Healthcare Clears Hurdle Despite Unclear FinancingForbes
The Nation. -National Review -The Mercury News -Mic
all 213 news articles »

          BofA Investment a Windfall for Warren Buffett   
Billionaire Warren Buffett's company is exercising Bank of America Corp. warrants that will work out to a paper profit of $12 billion.

Buffett's firm, Berkshire Hathaway Inc., in 2011 invested $5 billion in the Charlotte, North Carolina-based financial institution.

At the time, BofA's shares were in danger of falling below $6 as investors worried about its ability to meet regulatory capital requirements.



          Yes, California can (stick it to Trump on healthcare) - Los Angeles Times   

Los Angeles Times

Yes, California can (stick it to Trump on healthcare)
Los Angeles Times
Just when Senate Republicans are releasing the details of their Obamacare repeal bill — which would cut billions in Medicaid spending and likely leave millions of Americans with no health insuranceCalifornia lawmakers are mulling a plan to ...


          New Investments Announced for Waterfront Toronto   
The Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, the Premier of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne, and Mayor of the City of Toronto, John Tory, joined Waterfront Toronto CEO Will Fleissig earlier this week to announce joint funding of $1.185 billion for Waterfront Toronto. The Government of Canada will contribute up to $384 million to this project, and […]
          Dredging Part of Ocean City Boat Ramp Project   
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan joined Maryland Department of Natural Resources Secretary Mark Belton and Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan two days ago to officially open the public 64th Street Boat Ramp. “The boating industry is incredibly important to our state; it supports thousands of jobs and contributes $2 billion to our state economy,” said Governor Hogan. […]
          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project....
          Boeing Chief Meets With Trump About Air Force One, Fighter Costs    
The Boeing Company's CEO Tuesday had a second face-to-face meeting with President-elect Donald Trump to talk jet prices. Boeing's Dennis Muilenburg said they discussed a multi-billion dollar contract to replace the aging Air Force One jumbo jets and about new fighter jets for the military.
          Boeing And Iran Air Sign Jetliner Contract Worth $16.6 Billion   
Iran Air has finalized its historic purchase of 80 U.S.-made passenger jets, signing a deal with Boeing that's the first of its kind since the overthrow of Iran's shah in the 1970s. U.S. officials approved the deal in September , months after Iran emerged from sanctions. The sale of 50 737 planes and 30 wide-body 777 airliners will support nearly 100,000 jobs, Boeing says . The first planes are slated for delivery in 2018, with more jets following over the next 10 years, Iranian officials say. As NPR's Jackie Northam has reported : "Iran and Boeing go a long way back. Boeing was the largest supplier of civilian aircraft to Iran before the 1979 takeover of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran. Iran has kept flying those same planes for decades and its fleet of aging, worn-out commercial aircraft is in desperate need of replacement." Iran is rushing to update its aging commercial airline fleet — according to The Tehran Times , the country's state-owned airline has also placed orders for 100 Airbus
          Air Force None? Trump Threatens To Cancel New Presidential Plane Over Cost   
President-elect Donald Trump wants to clip the wings of a new Air Force One, saying the customized 747 is too expensive. "The plane is totally out of control," Trump told reporters Tuesday morning. "I think Boeing is doing a little bit of a number. We want Boeing to make a lot of money, but not that much money." Earlier in the day, Trump tweeted that the new aircraft would cost more than $4 billion and urged the government to cancel the contract. Neither Trump nor his spokespeople said where that cost estimate came from. Trump's tweet followed an article in the Chicago Tribune suggesting Trump's tough talk on trade could be bad for Boeing's export business. Last year the Air Force struck an agreement with Boeing to deliver two new 747s around 2024, by which time the two planes now in service for presidential travel will be more than 30 years old. The new models will be able to fly about 1,000 miles farther than the current planes. They'll also be slightly larger and faster, but will
          01/07/2017: PUZZLES: Holidaymakers abroad losing billions through making bad payment choices   

ALEXANDRA MORGAN but they can be even more costly. As well as adding exchange commission of around three per cent, many – including those from Bank of Scotland, Halifax, Lloyds, Santander and TSB – charge a further fee of up to £1.50 per...
          We are going to raise taxes on the middle class!   
Crowd Cheers Clinton's Call To 'Raise Taxes On The Middle Class' Hillary Clinton called for raising taxes on the “middle class” while campaigning on Monday in Omaha, NE. Joined by left-wing Democrat billionaire Warren Buffett, she received applause from those in attendance. “Because while Warren is standing up for a fairer tax code, Trump wants to cut taxes for the super-rich,” said Clinton. “Well, we’re not going there, my friends. I’m telling you, right now - we’re going to write fairer rules for the middle class and we are going to raise taxes on the middle class!” Presumably a slip...
          Crowd Cheers Clinton's Call To 'Raise Taxes On The Middle Class'   
Hillary Clinton called for raising taxes on the “middle class” while campaigning on Monday in Omaha, NE. Joined by left-wing Democrat billionaire Warren Buffett, she received applause from those in attendance. “Because while Warren is standing up for a fairer tax code, Trump wants to cut taxes for the super-rich,” said Clinton. “Well, we’re not going there, my friends. I’m telling you, right now - we’re going to write fairer rules for the middle class and we are going to raise taxes on the middle class!”
          WATCH: Crowd Cheers Clinton's Call To 'Raise Taxes On The Middle Class'   
Hillary Clinton called for raising taxes on the “middle class” while campaigning on Monday in Omaha, NE. Joined by left-wing Democrat billionaire Warren Buffett, she received applause from those in attendance. “Because while Warren is standing up for a fairer tax code, Trump wants to cut taxes for the super-rich,” said Clinton. “Well, we’re not going there, my friends. I’m telling you, right now - we’re going to write fairer rules for the middle class and we are going to raise taxes on the middle class!”
          Automotive industry enjoys record £77.5bn year - ChoiceQuote Insurance Services   

ChoiceQuote Insurance Services

Automotive industry enjoys record £77.5bn year
ChoiceQuote Insurance Services
Britain's automotive industry has enjoyed a record year after securing a turnover of £77.5 billion last year, according to the latest figures. Published by SMMT on behalf of the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders, the 2017 UK Automotive ...

and more »

          Zacks: Analysts Expect Reynolds American Inc (RAI) Will Post Quarterly Sales of $3.28 Billion   

Equities research analysts predict that Reynolds American Inc will announce sales of $3.28 billion for the current fiscal quarter, Zacks Investment Research reports. Two analysts have made estimates for Reynolds American's earnings, with estimates ranging from $3.25 billion to $3.31 billion.


          M-Commerce Global Market by Product & Data Mining, Analysis and Forecast 2022   
(EMAILWIRE.COM, June 30, 2017 ) The Global M-Commerce market is accounted for $155.9 billion in 2015 and is poised to reach $1,067.1 billion by 2022 growing at a CAGR of 31.6% during the forecast period. The major driving factors for M-Commerce market are escalating adoption of smart devices, improved...
              
Matte Black Bugatti Chiron!! #thesexyvehicles #supercar #supercars #success #motivation #bugatti #millionaire #billionaire #luxury #luxurycar#exoticcars #exoticcar #porsche #audi #lifestyle #carswithoutlimits #cargram #instacars #dream#bugattichiron #dubai #london #mclaren #mercedes #amg #ferrari #lamborghini #cars
          Capote’s ‘Breakfast At Tiffany’s’ Manuscript Sells For $306,000 In NH   
Truman Capote's 1958 typed manuscript of "Breakfast at Tiffany's" with the author's handwritten edits has sold for about $306,000 at auction to a Russian billionaire.
          The Next Pandemic Is Nearly Upon Us and Bill Gates Is Positioned to Enormously Profit   
The Next Pandemic Is Nearly Upon Us and Bill Gates Is Positioned to Enormously Profit
SOURCE

"...because Fatima is a very apocalyptic message. It says that no matter what happens there are going to be terrible wars, there are going to be diseases, whole nations are going to be wiped out, there are going to be 3 days darkness, there are going to be epidemics that will wipe out whole nations overnight (great culling), parts of the earth will be washed away at sea and violent tornadoes and storms. It's not a nice message at all." ~Fr Malachi Martin on portions of the real 3rd secret of Fatima
My oh my, we may be getting glimpse into how the Deep State will ultimately respond to the extreme scrutiny that they are undergoing. The Deep State is losing control of the narrative and they desperately need a game-changer. And the following may very well represent what is coming.

Bill Gates and the Discovery Channel are Promoting a New Show on Pandemics As a Threat to Humanity

The Discovery Channel is airing a show on July 6th which details how easy it would be for a pandemic to wipe out a significant amount of humanity. The content of the show is not newsworthy unto itself. However, when they bring the richest man in the world, who has made a large portion of his wealth from vaccines, come in and promote the show’s trailer, namely Bill Gates, that is worth noting.
Bill Gates is certainly no stranger to the subject of pandemics and it is interesting that he is featured in such a prominent manner.



If I wanted to obtain credibility on a widespread basis, I would not be selecting Bill Gates to promote anything that has to do with health, particularly in the arena of health administration. The old saying, “with friends like this, who needs enemies”, certainly applies. Please consider what Bill Gates previously did on a mass scale to young women in India. The following is from Natural News:
“In 2009, the tribal children of the Khammam district in Andhra Pradesh were gathered together and told they would be receiving healthcare shots. Even though the Gates foundation has the wealth to give these tribes access to clean water, sanitation services, nutrition and low stress living conditions, they instead push for HPV vaccines and call them “well-being” shots. The shot these young girls received was an HPV vaccine manufactured by Merck and administered by the state’s health department. The young girls, aged 9–15, were instructed to line up for three doses of the vaccine. As the months rolled on, the health of the 16,000 girls rapidly deteriorated. Five of the girls died shortly thereafter.
In Vadodara, Gujarat, another 14,000 or more tribal children were put to the test. This time the Gates Foundation carried out their humanitarian healthcare mission by providing the HPV vaccine called Cervarix, made by Glaxo SmithKline.
Giving no informed consent, the Gates Foundation coerced the tribal people on the belief that the shots were beneficial and necessary. However, when virus material, heavy metals and other preservatives foreign to the body are injected into young, developing women, drastic changes are bound to occur in their bodies. Having no idea that they were being signed up for vaccine trials, thousands of young girls were injected with these experimental vaccines purported to prevent cervical cancer.
Instead of seeing their health improve, the tribes reported numerous, bizarre adverse events in the days, weeks and months following vaccination. Young girls in India lost weight, appetite and stamina. 16-year-old Aman Dhawan had no idea he was even signed up for the vaccine trial. Soon thereafter he began to lose weight and energy, as the life was sucked right out of him. The same problem broke out among girls in Colombia, where the same vaccine had been doled out to the young girls there”.
Again, with friends like this, who needs enemies?

A New Pandemic Is the Fulfillment of Gates Self-Appointed Destiny

On February 28, 2013, Bill Gates appeared on the Charlie Rose Show and he was as candid as a globalist could be. On the show, Gates indicated that he has contributed large sums of money to numerous causes such as the Global Polio Eradication Initiative originally launched in 1988 by the World Health Organization (WHO), the CDC, and UNICEF.
Gates expressed his love affair with vaccines and his clear intention to reduce the world’s population when he stated the following:
 “The world today has 6.8 billion people… that’s headed up to about 9 billion. Now if we do a really great job on new vaccines, health care, reproductive health services, we could lower that by perhaps 10 or 15 percent.”

Quite clearly, Gates is a devoted subscriber to Eugenics and depopulation. On his television show, Charlie Rose asked Gates the following question:

“You mentioned the five or a six year plan the new initiative has learning from old lessons and therefore, coming up with new approaches. What are the new approaches?”
To that question, Bill Gates answered:
“Well, we’re able to use new technology like satellite photos to see are there people moving around, nomadic roots. You know we see if when we go out to get all the children, if there’s some settlement areas that we’ve actually missed. We also put a – – a phone in the vaccine box they carry around that looks where they’re located every three minutes and so it has that GPS data. At the end of the day you plug that in and compare it to where they were asked to go, and you can see if you’re – you’re really covering all the kids.”
Gates is clearly advocating for an extreme Orwellian society that will be monitored and targeted for vaccinations that do more harm than good. The ultimate goal is depopulation, not saving lives. Unfortunately for the fate of humanity, Gates seems to know something ominous is coming our way when we consider what Gates recently wrote in the New York Times.

Bill Gates Writes for the New York Times

On March 18, 2015, the King of vaccinations  wrote an editorial piece in the New York Times in which he stated that the “Ebola epidemic in West Africa has killed more than 10,000 people. If anything good can come from this continuing tragedy, it is that Ebola can awaken the world to a sobering fact: We are simply not prepared to deal with a global epidemic“.
Gates also stated the following:
“As menacing as Ebola was this past year, other pandemics are a greater threat to the human race.
The Ebola epidemic in West Africa has killed more than 10,000 people. If anything good can come from this continuing tragedy, it is that Ebola can awaken the world to a sobering fact: We are simply not prepared to deal with a global epidemic.
Of all the things that could kill more than 10 million people around the world…there are many things worse than Ebola”
Gates spoke about the deadly Spanish Flu and other epidemics which could (probably will) serve to threaten humanity. Frighteningly and prophetically, Gates is advocating for the United Nations should “fund a global institution” to coordinate the efforts to conduct mass vaccinations. Would anyone like to place a bet that the new round of vaccinations will be mandatory? The United Nations and the World Health Organization would be in charge according to Gates. After all, according to Gates, Ebola was terrible, but next time, “it could be much worse“.

Gates Has Already Put His Money Where His Mouth Is

Can we only imagine the enormous profits that can be realized by vaccinating every child in the third world? If we apply Gates’ penchant for investing in causes which produce a hefty “return on investment” (ROI) then one could reasonably suspect that Gates is positioning himself to profit on the $50 million he has invested in the Ebola cause which conveniently includes the CDC, the holder of the patent for Ebola and this is just one small example of how Gates has positioned himself to enormously profit from a pandemic:

“When an unsuspecting public is finally told of the existence of an Ebola vaccine, coupled with the fact that the Global Fund will be in charge of the distribution of the vaccine. Interestingly, Bill Gates has donated a total of $560 million dollars to the Global Fund. The Global Fund has also positioned themselves to be in charge of the distribution of the “newly developed”, and not yet announced vaccines for TB and HIV.  Since the goal is the vaccination of every man, woman and child on the planet with multiple vaccines, Gates’ $560 million contribution to the Global Fund is chump change compared to the expected ROI…”

If one really wants to get conspiratorial, consider that back in 2014 I previously published an article entitled:

The CDC, NIH & Bill Gates Own the Patents On Existing Ebola & Related Vaccines: Mandatory Vaccinations Are Near

Predictive Programming Supports Gates’ Prepositioning to Profit from an Engineered Pandemic

TNT is currently home to a very popular show known as The Last Ship. From a technical standpoint, the show is very well constructed particularly with regard to the military protocols embedded within the story line. The show is based on an engineered pandemic which sweeps the planet and destroys 80% of humanity. Interestingly, the show contains a sub-theme in which a group of people who are immune to the pandemic, ban together to try and form a “master race”  and also kill off the vulnerable at the same time as they try and enhance the spreading of the pandemic.
In the show’s plot a “vaccine” is developed as a cure. Bill Gates must be jumping up and down for joy at the storyline since this man virtually controls all vaccines on the planet.  Here is a further description of the show which takes on new meaning now that the discussion of a potential pandemic is taking place in combination with the Discovery Channel’s exploration, guided by Gates, into this topic. Here is a brief discussion of the show, The Last Ship.


In the first three seasons of the Last Ship, it has always debuted in June. I find it more than interesting that the season premiere has been delayed until after the Discovery Channel’s show with Bill Gates on pandemics.
TNT has chosen Sunday, August 20th,  for the fourth season premiere of its epic drama series The Last Ship. Also, I find it interesting that the show was renewed for two years which guarantees a 5th year. When have you ever seen a show be renewed for two years at a time?

Conclusion

If I were to don my conspiracy hat, which is easy to do when Bill Gates is in the neighborhood, it appears that humanity being prepared for the inevitable pandemic which will wipe out any real resistance to the Deep State.
What does this mean for the United States and for your family. Fortunately, the Obama administration left behind several documents which tells us what we are all facing and this will the future topic of these particular revelations. In the meantime, monitor your news for preliminary snippets of a coming pandemic.

RELATED:
http://tradcatknight.blogspot.com/2016/05/3rd-secret-of-fatima-epidemics.html 


Dr. Tenpenny "Global Forced Vaccines; Conspiracy Or Reality?  



          CERN Breaking Records With Unprecedented Number of Particles In Record Time    
CERN Breaking Records With Unprecedented Number of Particles In Record Time 
CERN is the evil program which will literally open the "gates of hell".   Our Lady said to wear her scapular and pray her rosary but how FEW take this message seriously.  I guess that is why 3/4 of the world will die in the 3 days of darkness...
Apocalypse 9: 1-5 with St. Jerome's commentary: "And the fifth angel sounded the trumpet, and I saw a star fall from heaven upon the earth, and there was given to him the key of the bottomless pit. [2] And he opened the bottomless pit: and the smoke of the pit arose, as the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened with the smoke of the pit. [3] And from the smoke of the pit there came out locusts upon the earth. And power was given to them, as the scorpions of the earth have power: [4] And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of the earth, nor any green thing, nor any tree: but only the men who have not the sign of God on their foreheads. [5] And it was given unto them that they should not kill them; but that they should torment them five months: and their torment was as the torment of a scorpion when he striketh a man. 

[1] "A star fall": This may mean the fall and apostasy of great and learned men from the true faith. Or a whole nation falling into error and separating from the church, not having the sign of God in their foreheads.
[1] "The key of the bottomless pit": That is, to the angel, not to the fallen star. To this angel was given the power, which is here signified by a key, of opening hell.
[3] "There came out locusts": These may be devils in Antichrist's time, having the appearance of locusts, but large and monstrous, as here described. 




An unprecedented number of particles has been reached in record time. Just five weeks after physics resumed, the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is already running at full throttle. On Wednesday 28 June 2017 the LHC established yet another record-breaking high, with 2556 proton bunches circulating in each direction of the accelerator. The beams in the LHC are made up of bunches of protons, spaced seven metres (25 nanoseconds) apart, with each one containing more than 100 billion protons. 2556 is the maximum possible number of bunches that can be reached with the beam preparation method currently used.
The particle bunches that are delivered to the LHC are prepared and accelerated by a chain of four accelerators. Since last year, a new method to group and split the bunches enables the particles to be squeezed even closer together. With an equal number of protons, the beam diameter was reduced by 40 per cent. Denser bunches means a higher probability of collisions at the centre of the experiments.
This success has led to a new luminosityrecord for the LHC of 1.58x1034 cm-2s-1. This figure may not mean much to most of us, but it's crucial for the accelerator's experts. It measures the number of potential collisions per second and per unit of area . This new peak luminosity surpasses initial expectations defined by the original designs for the LHC, which hoped it could reach a maximum of 1x1034cm-2s-1.
A higher luminosity means more collisions for the experiments collecting data: in just a few weeks ATLAS and CMS stored more than 6 inverse femtobarns, over an eighth of the total anticipated for the whole year.
Nevertheless, the operators cannot sit on their hands. Many parameters can be tuned to further improve the luminosity.
Next week, the LHC and its experiments will take a short break for the first of the two technical stops planned for the year. This will be an opportunity to carry out maintenance.

RELATED:
 http://tradcatknight.blogspot.com/2015/03/cern-gateway-to-hell.html
 http://tradcatknight.blogspot.com/2015/07/nephilim-to-return-cern-talmud-3-days.html



THE THREE DAYS OF DARKNESS

 Marie-Julie announced the three days of darkness during which the infernal powers will be loosed and will execute all the enemies of God. "The crisis will explode suddenly; the punishments will be shared by all and will succeed one another without interruption ..." [January 4, 1884] "The three days of darkness will be on a THURSDAY, FRIDAY AND SATURDAY. Days of the Most Holy Sacrament, of the Cross and Our Lady ... three days less one night."

"The earth will be covered in darkness", says Our Lady on 20th of September 1882, "AND HELL WILL BE LOOSED ON EARTH. Thunder and lightning will cause those who have no faith or trust in My Power, to die of fear."

"During these three days of terrifying darkness, no windows must be opened, because no one will be able to see the earth and the terrible colour it will have in those days of punishment without dying at once ..."

"The sky will be on fire, the earth will split ... During these three days of darkness let the blessed candle be lighted everywhere, no other light will shine ..."

"NO ONE OUTSIDE A SHELTER.. will survive. The earth will shake as at the judgment and fear will be great. Yes, We will listen to the prayers of your friends; NOT ONE WILL PERISH. We will need them to publish the glory of the Cross ..." [December 8, 1882]

"THE CANDLES OF BLESSED WAX ALONE WILL GIVE LIGHT during this horrible darkness. ONE CANDLE alone will be enough for the duration of this night of hell ... In the homes of the wicked and blasphemers these candles will give NO LIGHT."

"And Our Lady states: "Everything will shake except the piece of furniture on which the blessed candle is burning. This will not shake. You will all gather around with the crucifix and my blessed picture. This is what will keep away this terror."

"During this darkness the devils and the wicked will take on THE MOST HIDEOUS SHAPES ... red clouds like blood will move across the sky. The crash of the thunder will shake the earth and sinister lightning will streak the heavens out of season. The earth will be shaken to its foundations. The sea will rise, its roaring waves will spread over the continent. .."

 "THE EARTH WILL BECOME LIKE A VAST CEMETERY. The bodies of the wicked and the just will cover the ground."

"Three-quarters of the population of the globe will disappear. Half the population of France will be destroyed."


"And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church (Catholic), and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it."
[Matthew 16:18]

 

Anthony Patch "CERN: Opening The GateWay To Hell"




          9/11 Simplified...   
9/11 Simplified...
James Perloff

Yes, Virginia, there really were hijackers on the 9/11 planes—but not the ones we were told

This post is not intended to be taken dogmatically; I do not insist that its conclusions are correct; they are just presented for consideration.
In this post, though they have already been much discussed and debated within alternative media, I’ll address three major components of the 9/11 controversy: (1) what brought down the Twin Towers; (2) what initially struck the Towers; and (3) what happened to the original planes and passengers.
However, there is a valid complaint often voiced in the Truth Movement, which runs like this: “I really don’t care how 9/11 was done and I’m tired of all the infighting about this. What really matters is, we know the government’s story is bogus, so we need to focus on identifying the criminals and bringing them to justice.”



I consider this a very legitimate grievance. But I don’t think we can separate “who” from “how.” When a prosecutor presents his case in a courtroom, he doesn’t name a crime’s perpetrator without describing how the crime was carried out. Nor does he present the jury with the crime’s details and methodology without identifying the suspect(s).
So let’s tackle both how and who, and we’ll start with “who,” because doing so clarifies a lot of “how.”

The Who

What’s wrong with the following math equations?
3 + 3 = 68
98 – 7 = 2
58 X 7 = 35
What’s wrong, of course, are the 8s. Take away the 8s and each equation reads correctly.
I believe that, when it comes to resolving the mystery of how 9/11 was executed, the Truth Movement suffers from a major “8” (in addition to any individual doses of cognitive dissonance that have been deliberately sprinkled in). I believe that “8” is:
9/11 was an inside job.
I believe a far more correct rendering is:
9/11 was an outside job, done by Israeli operatives, but with consent and cooperation at the highest levels of the U.S. government.
To understand this, it may be helpful to compare Israel’s vicious 1967 attack on the USS Liberty. It is well understood that President Lyndon B. Johnson and Defense Secretary Robert McNamara fully cooperated, by twice recalling U.S. fighters that the Sixth Fleet had sent to rescue the Liberty, and later by ordering a cover-up. However, at the physical operational level, the attack was carried out by Israelis, not by Americans in an “inside job.”
OK, but what’s the evidence that Israel was behind 9/11? By far the best summary I’ve seen is the WikiSpooks post 9-11/Israel Did It. (Incidentally, as many of my regular readers know, I’m half-Jewish on my father’s side, so knee-jerk charges against me of “anti-Semitism” can be stuffed in the appropriate place.)
A sampling of highlights:
• The five notorious “dancing Israelis” who filmed the Twin Towers’ destruction, after which they celebrated, high-fiving each other and even photographing themselves flicking a lighter against the backdrop of the smoking ruins. They were arrested after driving off in a van whose license number was reported by a neighbor. Later it was revealed that at least two of them were agents of Mossad, Israel’s intelligence service.
• Michael Chertoff was put in charge of the Justice Department’s investigation of 9/11, despite his mother having been a Mossad agent, and Chertoff himself reportedly holding dual citizenship in Israel. Chertoff released hundreds of arrested Israelis back to Israel, including the notorious “dancing Israelis.”
• Quoting Wikispooks: “The company that ran airport security at all three airports where the alleged hijackings originated was Huntsleigh USA, a wholly owned subsidiary of ICTS International and owned by Ezra Harel and Menachem Atzmon —both Israeli Jews.”
• ”Lucky Larry” Silverstein, who became the new owner of the World Trade Center less than two months before the attacks, and earned an insurance payout of nearly $5 billion on his $124 million investment (after missing the disaster due to a fortuitous doctor’s appointment on the morning of 9/11) was such good friends with Benjamin Netanyahu that the Israeli newspaper Haaretz reported in November 2001: “Every Sunday afternoon, New York time, Netanyahu would call Silverstein. It made no difference what the subject was or where Netanyahu was, he would always call.”1
• Supported by funds from Israel’s government, Zim Israel Navigational was the world’s ninth largest shipping firm. It had its American headquarters in the World Trade Center—until about two weeks before 9/11. Zim then moved its offices and employees to a new building, claiming rent was cheaper there.
• The 9/11 Commission’s executive director was Philip Zelikow, a dual U.S.-Israeli citizen. Why should anyone with sworn loyalty to a foreign nation be entrusted with such a position?
• On 9/11, the chairman of George W. Bush’s Defense Policy Board was Richard Perle, whom the National Security Agency had caught spying on the U.S. for Israel in 1970.
• On 9/11, employees of the Israeli instant messaging company Odigo received messages two hours before the attack, warning them not to be in the World Trade Center.
• Ptech, a software firm linked to Israeli intelligence, had provided vital software being used by the FAA, FBI, and U.S. armed forces on 9/11.
• On 9/11, seated in row 9 of Flight 11 (directly behind “Mohammed Atta”) was Danny Lewin, a former captain in the IDF (Israeli Defense Force), and who served in the Sayeret Matkal, which specializes in counter-terrorism, hostage rescue, and assassination. Lewin could bench-press 315 pounds and “was trained to kill terrorists with a pen or a credit card, or just his bare hands.”2 In 2000, he had himself photographed in front of panels resembling the Twin Towers, wearing a Swatch Watch whose model name was “Hijacker.” The hour, minute and second hands were all on the “11” and the date was set to the 11th, even though the picture was taken on the 10th.




The odds against all four time indicators being on “11” are more than 20,000 to 1. Times the odds of the watch model being named “Hijacker”: unfathomable.
That’s just a small sampling of the evidence that Israel did 9/11. When police detectives try to solve a murder, among the first questions asked is: Who benefitted from the crime? In 9/11’s case, Middle Eastern Muslims did not benefit—the U.S. has been making war on them for 16 years. America did not benefit—we’re suffering the casualties and trillions in costs from the wars, as well as degradation of our liberties in the name of security. The only beneficiary was Israel—her enemies have been neutralized one by one, courtesy America, in fulfillment of the Greater Israel plan, with Iran reputedly next on the hit list.
That’s the main who; let’s talk about the how.

(1) How were the Twin Towers destroyed?

Within alternative media are three major schools of thought about this. One is nano-thermite, largely advocated by Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. Another is Directed Energy Weapons (DEWs), whose foremost advocate is Dr. Judy Wood. The third is nuclear devices, which I and a few others support. Let me be clear: I have friends in all three camps, and differing opinions on this matter don’t impede our friendships.
I’ve laid out why I believe the Twin Towers’ collapse was a nuclear event in an extensive blog post. To minimize redundancy, I’ll shrink this to a “top ten” list:

TOP TEN REASONS THE WTC COLLAPSE WAS A NUCLEAR EVENT

1. Thyroid cancer occurs at above-average frequency in 9/11 first responders more than any other type of cancer (see full post for citations). This is a signature of nuclear bombs; they emit iodine-131, which collects in the thyroid, often causing cancer. (This is why some people keep potassium iodide tablets on hand—to protect their thyroid glands in case of a nuclear attack.)
2. World Trade Center dust samples examined by the United States Geological Survey (USGS) found Uranium, Strontium, Barium, Thorium, and other products of nuclear fission, in high concentrations that only an atomic blast could explain. Although the Survey avoided calling attention to the significance, William Tahil vetted it in his pioneering 2006 book Ground Zero: The Nuclear Demolition of the World Trade Centre. (The phrase “ground zero,” incidentally, had only been applied to nuclear detonation sites prior to 9/11.)
3. There was molten steel underneath the rubble of the World Trade Center, whose fires kept burning for over three months. Extraordinary heat is yet another signature of a nuclear bomb.
(Note: I’m aware that molten steel was seen at a corner of the South Tower before its collapse; I don’t doubt that pre-planted explosives were in the Towers, probably including the incendiary thermite, but I don’t believe these explosives were what destroyed the WTC. To clarify, each Tower had six basement levels, and the thesis of my full post—which I had excellent assistance with—is that each Tower was destroyed by a suitcase nuke positioned at the lowest point in either building: the services pits beneath elevator 50. This was the only elevator that ran the full length of either Tower, and the only elevator whose service pits were carved into the bedrock beneath the World Trade Center. This location would make the ideal “launching pad” for a nuke, as the bedrock would contain the sideways and downward force of a nuclear explosion, which would follow the path of least resistance up through the shaft. See the full post for diagrams.)
4. The Towers did not simply “fall,” they exploded, throwing chunks of steel weighing multiple tons hundreds of feet. Check, for example, this piece that embedded itself in the American Express Building across the street:

No exotic weapons are needed to explain this. A nuclear bomb is the most powerful explosive known.
5. The Towers’ inner contents were vaporized: no furniture, filing cabinets (except one), computers, or toilets survived. All turned into dust. Even the buildings’ concrete became dust, instead of falling as chunks of debris. The vaporization, of course, included the people inside (whole bodies that were found belonged to people who jumped before the Towers disintegrated). Not only is a nuclear bomb the most powerful explosive known, its blast—unlike conventional explosives—endures for several seconds, enabling it to inflict considerably more damage.
6. At the times of the two Tower “collapses,” seismographs at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory in Palisades, New York, recorded enormous off-the-chart spikes consistent with huge explosions.


This shot of the South Tower exploding caught a huge singular upward burst of energy.
7. A nuclear blast explains the damage to the rest of the World Trade Center. Buildings 5 and 7 suffered enormous fires, and building 6 was cratered out. These phenomena could not have begun before the Towers’ destruction; otherwise, videos of the burning Towers would have shown additional smoke plumes, and cameras would have panned to the blazes.
Nuclear blasts originating at the lowest levels of the Twin Towers may provide the answer. Underground the World Trade Center was interconnected by pipes, not only for sewage, but a 3-foot-wide storm water drainage system.
Any building’s place at greatest risk for flooding is its lowest point. For the Twin Towers, this would have been Elevator 50’s service pits. From here flood water would be pumped through pipes to the 36-inch storm drain. Thus atomic blasts here would not only follow the path of least resistance through Elevator 50’s shaft, but through the 36-inch storm water drain, traveling through the underground pipes and shooting up through buildings 5, 6 and 7, igniting them. Falling debris could not have caused the raging internal fires seen in the smaller buildings; edifices outside the World Trade Center (American Express Building, Winter Garden Atrium) were heavily impacted by debris, but they did not catch fire. THEY WERE NOT CONNECTED TO THE WTC’S UNDERGROUND DRAINAGE SYSTEM.
Please see my full post for elaboration and documentation of the above point.
8. On 9/11, New Yorkers fled two terrifying dust clouds that engulfed the area surrounding the WTC. Anyone who watches videos of nuclear bombs detonating will see that they create sprawling ground-level clouds. Although building demolitions also routinely make dust clouds, the 9/11 ones seemed to have had a life of their own.

READ IT ALL HERE!
https://jamesperloff.com/2017/06/30/911-simplified/ 


Chris Bollyn "9-11 Deception: Greater Killsrael"  


          Planet X Incoming: Giant sinkhole swallows sleeping woman in China   
Planet X Incoming: Giant sinkhole swallows sleeping woman in China
Latest earth changes news...
SOURCE

A sleeping woman was swallowed by sinkhole in central China after her bedroom collapsed during heavy rain.

The video, filmed in Shizhuling, Hunan Province on June 25, shows how the house partially collapsed when the sinkhole opened due to the unstable terrain composed of a network of caves and waterways.

 

 

Just like Jeff Bush in Florida a few years ago! Fears are growing for a 45-year-old mother in central China who was apparently swallowed by a sinkhole while she was sleeping in her bed.


sinkhole swallows woman china, giant sinkhole swallows woman china, deadly sinkhole swallows woman china, sinkhole swallows woman china video
Giant sinkhole swallows sleeping woman in China (video). via South China Morning Post
It is her husband that rang the alarm on Saturday morning, when after hearing a loud boom, he entered his bedroom, and found a three-square-metre hole in the floor that swallowed a refrigerator, an electric fan and his wife.
The couple lives in Shizhuling, a village in the city of Lianyuan, which had been hard hit by heavy rains over the previous two days.

Search for the swallowed woman

Rescue teams launched a search for the missing woman – digging to a depth of 15 metres – but the work had to be called off when conditions became too dangerous. The excavation in the sodden ground even led to the partial collapse of a neighbouring property.


sinkhole swallows woman china, giant sinkhole swallows woman china, deadly sinkhole swallows woman china, sinkhole swallows woman china video
Rescue teams dig 15 meters deep and did not find the body of the 42-year-old mother. via South China Morning Post
The deadly sinkhole was most certainly due to geological landscape in the area made of a network of caves and underground waterways.

For the video:
 http://strangesounds.org/2017/06/giant-sinkhole-swallows-sleeping-woman-bedroom-china-video.html

 "And the Earth Shall Swallow up..." 


 

DEVELOPING: Mysterious boom shakes houses and alarms residents in St. Helens, Oregon


A mysterious sound resembling a thunderous explosion was heard around 8 p.m. on June 25 in the St. Helens area. Curious citizens flooded social media with questions about the origin of the loud boom that some said shook homes and rattled windows. According to St. Helens Police Chief Terry Moss, the first reports of the sound came in at 8:22 p.m. Moss said his department fielded 11 calls regarding the boom, mainly from residents on the west side of town.
The cause of the sound has not been determined. Moss said this time of year is marked by frequent firework and “loud boom” reports. Without more definitive information, Moss said the matter would be considered closed. There was a viral reaction to the sound on Facebook, where reports of the boom were contentiously debated and numerous theories were offered. READ MORE


BIRTH PANGS: 900 Quakes in Yellowstone, 40 quakes near Lake Tahoe, 40 Quakes in N. Iceland


There are currently several seismic swarms taking place around the world. Nobody knows when they are going to stop and more frightening what they are going to produce. Yellowstone Supervolcano earthquake swarm reaches 878 events in just two weeks. The earthquake swarm hitting the Yellowstone national Park is currently slowing down, but more than 900 quakes have already hit near West Yellowstone on the western edge of the National Park in the last 2 weeks. But there is
virtually no risk of the volcano erupting – USGS hasn’t raised either the volcano alert level or the aviation color. The current earthquake swarm began on June 12. A week later, the USGS put out a statement to say that 464 earthquakes had been recorded, with the largest being magnitude 4.4. This is the highest number of earthquakes at Yellowstone within a single week in the past five years. At the time, a spokesperson for the USGS said “slowly winding down,” adding that “no other geological activity has been detected.” However, in a newly released statement about the ongoing swarm, seismologists from the University of Utah said 878 events have now been recorded at Yellowstone National Park. READ MORE


Deadly floods and landslides hit southern China, 7.44 million affected


Floods, landslides and other disasters caused by severe weather across southern China affected more than 7.4 million people in 9 provinces since June 22, 2017, officials said today. As of early June 27, the death toll stands at 32 while 8 people are still missing. According to data provided by China’s Ministry of Civil Affairs (MCA) valid 01:00 UTC (09:00 local time) on June 26, Changde, Yueyang, Yiyang, Loudi, Shangrao, Juijiang and other places recorded between 350 and
470 mm (13.8 – 18.5 inches) of rain since the evening of June 22. By that time, severe weather affected 7.33 million people, 504 000 people were evacuated, and 186 000 needed emergency rescue. 6 500 houses collapsed while 60 000 suffered different degrees of damage. The direct economic loss was estimated at 9.46 billion yuan. At 01:00 UTC on June 27, the number of affected people rose to 7.446 million. READ MORE

Planet X Incoming: Birth Pangs May, 2017  



          By 2100, Refugees Would Be the Most Populous Country on Earth   
Poverty and deadly wars are the major drivers of displacement.

The UN Refugee Agency has announced the new figures for the world’s displaced: 65.9 million. That means that 65.9 million human beings live as refugees, asylum seekers or as internally displaced people. If the refugees formed a country, it would be the 21st largest state in the world, just after Thailand (68.2 million) and just ahead of the United Kingdom (65.5 million). But unlike these other states, refugees have few political rights and no real representation in the institutions of the world.

The head of the UN Refugee Agency, Filippo Grandi, recently said that most of the displacement comes as a result of war. "The world seems to have become unable to make peace," Grandi said. "So you see old conflicts that continue to linger, and new conflicts erupting, and both produce displacement. Forced displacement is a symbol of wars that never end."

Few continents are immune from the harsh reality of war. But the epicenter of war and displacement is along the axis of the Western-driven global war on terror and resource wars. The line of displacement runs from Afghanistan to South Sudan with Syria in between. Eyes are on Syria, where the war remains hot and the tensions over escalation intensify daily. But there is as deadly a civil war in South Sudan, driven in large part by a ferocious desire to control the country’s oil. Last year, 340,000 people fled South Sudan for refugee camps in neighboring Uganda. This is a larger displacement than from Syria.

Poverty is a major driver of displacement. It is what moves hundreds of thousands of people to try and cross the Sahara Desert and then the Mediterranean Sea for European pastures. But most who try this journey meet a deadly fate. Both the Sahara and the Mediterranean are dangerous. This week, the UN’s International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in Niger rescued 600 migrants from the Sahara, although 52 did not survive.

A 22-year-old woman from Nigeria was among those rescued. She was on a pick-up truck with 50 people. They left Agadez for Libya. ‘We were in the desert for ten days,’ she says. "After five days, the driver abandoned us. He left us with all of our belongings, saying he was going to pick us up in a couple of hours. But he never did." Forty-four of the migrants died. The six who remained struggled to safety. ‘We had to drink our own pee to survive,’ she said.

Getting to Libya is hard enough. But being in Libya is perilous. Violence against vulnerable migrants inside Libya continues to occur. The IOM reports the presence in Libya of ‘slave markets.’ Migrants who make it across the Sahara into Libya have told investigators that they find themselves in these slave markets where they are bought to be taken to private prisons and put to work or else sold back to their families if they can raise the high ransom payments. UNICEF reports incidents of rape and violence against women and children in these private prisons. One 15-year-old boy said of his time in a private prison, "Here they treat us like chickens. They beat us, they do not give us good water and good food. They harass us. So many people are dying here, dying from disease, freezing to death."

Danger lurks on the sea as well. This year already IOM reports least 2,108 deaths in the sea between Libya and Italy. This is the fourth year in a row that IOM has counted over 2,000 deaths by mid-year. Over the past five years, this averages out to about 10 deaths a day. Libya, broken by NATO’s war in 2011, remains a gateway for the vulnerable from various parts of Africa, countries damaged by IMF policies and by warfare. There is no expectation that the numbers of those on the march will decrease.

In a recent paper in The Lancet (June 2017), Paul Spiegel, formerly of the UN Refugee Agency suggests that the "humanitarian system was not designed to address the types of conflicts that are happening at present." With over 65 million people displaced, the various institutions of the UN and of the NGO world are simply not capable of managing the crisis.

"It is not simply overstretched," Spiegel wrote of the humanitarian system, "it is no longer fit for purpose."

These are shattering words. One problem Spiegel identifies is the assumption that refugee flows are temporary, since wars will end at some point. What happens when wars and occupations are permanent? People either have to live for generations in refugee camps or they will seek, through dangerous passages, flight to the West. He gives the example of Iran, which absorbed over a million Afghan refugees without using the camp strategy. They simply allowed the Afghans into Iranian society and absorbed them by putting money into their various social schemes (such as education and health). Spiegel also points out that refugees must be part of the designing the process for humanitarian aid. These are good suggestions, but they are not going to be possible with the limited funds available for refugees and with the crisis level of activity that detains the humanitarian agencies.

Spiegel does not deal with one of the great problems for humanitarianism: the persistence of war and the theory that more war—or the current euphemism, security—is the answer to humanitarian crises. This January, over 1,000 people tried to scale the large barrier that divides Morocco from the Spanish enclave of Ceuta. Looking at that barrier, one is reminded of the idea that walls will somehow prevent migration, a view driven by President Donald Trump. Violence met the migrants, a mirror of the violence that was visited among migrants along the spinal cord of Eastern Europe last year. Walls, police forces and military interventions are all seductive to an imagination that forgets why people migrate and that they are human beings on the run with few other options. There is a view that security barriers and security forces will raise the price of migrant and deter future migrants. This is a silly illusion. Migration is dangerous already. That has not stopped anyone. More humane thinking is necessary.

It is important therefore that the UN Deputy Secretary-General Amina Mohammed told a meeting on the Sahel on June 28 that the world leaders need to "avoid a disproportionate emphasis on security" when dealing with the multiple crises in the Sahara region and north of it. "No purely military solution" can work against transnational organized crime, violent extremism and terrorism, nor against poverty and hopelessness. Underlying causes are not being addressed, and indeed the surface reactions—to bomb more—only create more problems, not less.

In the July issue of Land Use Policy, professors Charles Geisler and Ben Currens estimate that by 2100 there will be 2 billion refugees as a result of climate change. These numbers are staggering. They are an inevitable future. By then, refugees will be the largest country on earth—nomads, seeking shelter from destruction of climate and capitalism, from rising seas and wars of greed.

 

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          Pyure Magic   
Planning a trip this summer? You could go to Paris. Or London. Or the Caribbean. You and a billion other people. Or, if you want to enjoy something truly unique -- a place where you'll never have to put up with annoying tourists -- you can come to beautiful Pyongyang! As we say around here, "Pyongyang is Pyure Magic!" Now, we know what you're thinking. North Korea? Isn't that the whack-a-do socialist dictatorship run by that chubby kid who keeps threatening to attack the United States? Sure. But it's so much more than that! For instance, did you know that they discovered the remains of a ancient unicorn lair right here in North Korea? It's true! Well, it's not quite true. Turns out that was a translation error. What they actually found was a kirin, which is a four-legged creature with the head of a dragon and the body of a tiger. Still though, that's pretty good! While you're here, make sure to take in some of the Big P's many, many statues dedicated to its beloved leaders! And murals. There are shit tons of those too.

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          Just Here to Make Friends   
If you watch a lot of terrible reality TV, as we do, you've heard it a billion times. "I'm not here to make friends." Yeah, we get it. It's a cutthroat competition and you're here to win, not to be Mr. or Miss Congeniality. Good for you. We, on the other hand, are here to make friends. And you know who else is? This Labrador! He's not throwing anyone under the bus. He's not voting anyone off the island. He's not proposing to one girl on national TV, only to dump her the next week and propose to the runner-up. Nope, he's here to do one thing: make friends. In fact, he wants to be your friend. So how about it? Just look at that face!

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          7/2/2017: NEWS: Finally — Waterview Tunnel open   
After years of construction and $1.4 billion in spending, the long-awaited Waterview Tunnel has finally opened. The country’s longest tunnel was due to open to traffic about 6am today. Transport Minister Simon Bridges said the opening marked the most...
          Building codes not enough to protect homes against water damage in severe storms   
The none-structural storm damage: ceiling failure due to water ingress into roof cavity. Author provided Click for a full size image   Building codes not enough to protect homes against water damage in severe storms When Tropical Cyclone Debbie made landfall in North Queensland early in 2017, it led to nearly A$1 billion in insured ...
          Meet Kenya’s John Mwangi, among the drivers who made Uber’s 5 billionth trip   
John Mwangi an Uber driver in Mombasa

Uber started in 2010 to solve a simple problem: how do you get a ride at the push of a button? In late 2015, they hit a big milestone: one billion trips. Six months later, they crossed two billion. And just a few weeks ago, on Saturday, May 20, 156 trips started

The post Meet Kenya’s John Mwangi, among the drivers who made Uber’s 5 billionth trip appeared first on Techjaja.


          Threat of Population Surge to "10 Billion" Espoused in London Theatre.   
In a lecture given at the Royal Court Theatre in London, Professor Stephen Emmott gave a chilling account of what will happen to the Earth and its resources should the population rise to 10 billion by the end of this century, from its present number of 7 billion. It's not a cheerful prognosis,...
          Oil spill: BP shrinks by Billion   
Only time will tell whether BP's accountants have included a sufficient 'haircut' in the second-quarter results to allow the new boss to begin rebuilding the firm's fortunes.
          Study: Over 2.2 Billion People Overweight Or Obese Worldwide   
There are now more than 2 billion people worldwide who are overweight or obese, according to a new study published in The New England Journal of Medicine. So, to put that in a different sort of light, there are now roughly the same number of people in the world who are overweight or obese as […]
           James Stunt's entourage move belongings into London hotel    
Billionaire playboy James Stunt, 35, left his £100m Chelsea home yesterday after being evicted by wife Petra Ecclestone. Today his belongings were transported to a London hotel.
          Regulatory Support Manager - General Electric - Marlborough, MA   
A $5 billion business with. Related to the BioProcess business at a high level. Necessary investigations, preparations and delivery of certificates, use of...
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          NHS rescue plans are in 'chaos' after weakened Theresa May backs down from fight with MPs, Labour claims   
Legislation for local health chiefs to transform the delivery of care – and, crucially, save many billions of pounds – has been shelved Reported by Independent 12 minutes ago.
          The get-up-to-speed-guide on the school voucher debate   

With a choice-friendly President and Secretary of Education now in office, private school choice programs have been cast into the national spotlight. This week has been no different: On Monday, researchers released two major studies on vouchers—one on Indiana’s program, the other on Louisiana’s—and the U.S. Supreme Court handed down a decision that may have implications for choice programs across this nation.

Among other things, this means that the debate on private school choice has moved from the periphery of the education policy conversation to center stage. As a result, some of you may be joining the conversation for the first time. As a long-time participant in the voucher wars, we at the Fordham Institute thought it might be helpful to offer a get-up-to-speed guide featuring some of our “greatest hits” on the topic.

We’ve arranged it around four questions:

  1. What does the research tell us about the impact of school vouchers on participants and on traditional public schools?
  2. What is smart policy regarding results-based accountability in the context of private school choice?
  3. How can we encourage private schools to participate in choice programs, and get high-quality schools to grow or replicate?
  4. What are the pros and cons of a big new federal initiative on private school choice?

What does the research tell us about the impact of school vouchers on participants and on traditional public schools?

Boosting student outcomes remains a key goal of private-school choice. While Fordham isn’t a program evaluator per se, we’ve been proud to assist and support several important empirical analyses on the impacts of vouchers on both participants and pupils in public schools. Back in the early 2000s, we helped support an experimental study of a privately funded scholarship program in Dayton. The analysis found that African American participants made significant progress (more so in reading). Fast forward almost a decade: Ohio lawmakers had enacted a statewide voucher program known as EdChoice. In 2008, Fordham and a number other groups released an early study offering evidence that vouchers may have improved public schools as competition increased. Eight years later, we released a rigorous analysis of EdChoice by David Figlio. His study would corroborate the “competitive effects” finding, though he also found that voucher students themselves lost ground on state tests. As we’ve discussed, however, the participant analysis has several limitations that should be kept in mind. For an accessible overview of this study, see Dr. Figlio’s slide deck presented at our February event on voucher research.

What is smart policy regarding results-based accountability in the context of private school choice?

One of the central, thorniest policy questions of private-school choice programs is whether and how to hold them accountable for results. In 2009, we interviewed twenty top thinkers on choice and accountability. They offered a variety of perspectives on matters such as testing and transparency around those results; financial disclosures; and whether low-performing private schools should be stripped of their ability to enroll scholarship students. In the end, we suggested a “sliding scale” approach—private schools with more voucher students would face closer scrutiny than those with just a handful. Five years later, we released a policy toolkit aimed at state legislators wrestling with accountability in voucher or scholarship programs. Our recommendations insisted on protecting private schools’ freedoms, while holding them accountable for student outcomes (again on a sliding scale). In a couple follow-up blog posts, we continued to make the case that choice, done well, requires accountability for student learning. We noted earlier this year that as scholarship programs have expanded, states have indeed put into place reasonable accountability provisions, debunking one of critics’ favorite claims—that voucher-accepting schools are “unaccountable.”

How can we encourage private schools to participate in choice programs, and get high-quality schools to grow or replicate?

Not every private school decides to admit scholarship students when given the opportunity. Why do some schools participate, while others decline? In Red Tape or Red Herring, we surveyed private-school leaders to find out which policies weigh most heavily on this decision. Most respondents cite regulations that restrict admissions or religious practices as deterrents, while just a minority felt that testing discourages participation. The overwhelming majority said they were motivated by the opportunity to “expand their mission to their community.” Our case study of five Ohio private schools also reveals that vouchers are seen as a way to reach more families. Yet the school leaders also are candid about the challenges of maintaining a culture of high expectations, while working on shoestring budgets. Similar themes are echoed in a Fordham report that looked inside Catholic voucher-accepting schools in Milwaukee.

What are the pros and cons of a big new federal initiative on private school choice?

This all brings us to the burning question of the day, at least for Beltway policy wonks: Should there be a federal private-school choice initiative—and what should it look like? On these questions, we’ve got you covered. Just two days before President Trump’s inauguration, we co-hosted an event that debated three options for a federal private-school choice program. Throughout February, we published the views of a dozen top-notch experts in our fourth annual “Wonkathon.” We crowned a quartet from the Foundation for Excellence in Education as our “wisest wonks” in this competition, having won a popular vote for the most persuasive proposal. In February and April, we at Fordham co-hosted events that continued to explore issues in a potential federal choice program, from both research and policy angles. After weighing the competing arguments, Mike expressed his skepticism about the wisdom of a big new federal tax credit scholarship program.

***

Needless to say, we at the Education Gadfly have logged countless hours and spilled much ink wrestling with the issues around private school choice. We’ve done everything from commenting on presidential candidate Al Gore’s position on vouchers to penning editorials in newspapers to testifying before legislators in our home state of Ohio. We’ll continue to be relentless in advocating for thriving private schools that are accessible to families of all backgrounds. We certainly don’t have all the answers to get us there, but we hope you’ll consider joining us in this effort.

***

Fordham reports

Marshall Allen, “Public Support for Catholic Schools” in Scott Hamilton (ed.) Who Will Save America’s Urban Public Schools (2008); Chester E. Finn, Jr., et al, When Private Schools Take Public Dollars: What’s the Place of Accountability in School Voucher Programs? (2009); David Stuit and Sy Doan, School Choice Regulations: Red Tape or Red Herring? (2012); Ellen Belcher, Pluck and Tenacity: How Five Private Schools in Ohio Have Adapted to Vouchers (2014); Fordham Institute, Public Accountability and Private-School Choice: A Policy Toolkit (2014); David Figlio and Krzysztof Karbownik, Evaluation of Ohio’s EdChoice Scholarship Program: Selection, Competition, and Performance Effects (2016).

Fordham commentary

Michael Petrilli, “The problem with ‘bad voucher schools aren’t a problem,’” (2014); Michael Petrilli and Chester E. Finn, Jr., “The two tracks of school reform,” (2014); Michael Petrilli, “Vouchers have changed. Maybe your position should change, too” (2017); Michael Petrilli and Richard Kahlenberg, “Two experts debate whether public funds should be used to support private school vouchers” (2017); Aaron Churchill, “Don’t neglect vouchers’ competitive effects” (2017); Michael Petrilli, “The Fordham Institute’s 2017 Wonkathon: The $20 billion school choice edition” (2017); Fordham Institute, “A new federal push on private school choice?” (2017); Fordham Institute, “A $20 billion school choice tax credit program: Yes, maybe, how so?” (2017); Chad L. Aldis, “Testimony before the Ohio House Finance Committee” (2017); Michael Petrilli, “The three miracles required for Donald Trump to become the patron saint of school choice” (2017).


          MOODY'S LOWERS AMERADA HESS'S UNSECURED DEBT RATING   
The Amerada Hess Corporation's senior unsecured debt rating was cut below investment grade by Moody's Investors Service, which cited concern over costs and the oil company's ability to meet production goals. About $4 billion in securities were aff...
          Hess to Buy Triton Energy For $2.6 Billion in Cash   
Amerada Hess will buy Triton Energy for about $2.6 billion in cash, the companies said yesterday. Though it is best known for its Hess gas stations on the East Coast and its popular toy trucks, Amerada Hess has spent the last year trying with l...
          Davido’s Brother Reacts After He Was Mentioned In Matharoo Sisters Sex Scandal   

Davido’s brother, Adewale Adeleke has reacted to being dragged out in the dirty sex scandal fight involving Kiran, one of the Matharoo sisters and a former ‘sex mate’ named Pam who was celebrating the sisters infamous arrest in Nigeria for blackmailing billionaire businessman, Femi Otedola. According to Kiran, Pam slept with Davido’s brother Adewale Adeleke […]

The post Davido’s Brother Reacts After He Was Mentioned In Matharoo Sisters Sex Scandal appeared first on Liveofofo.


          Photo Of E-Money And His Police Escort At The Airport Today   

Five star music boss, Emoney stormed the Lagos airport today with his fierced looking security guards to board Air peace to Abuja. E-money is a billionaire brother to Kcee “Limpopo” crooner and also the CEO of five star shipping line. .photos below

The post Photo Of E-Money And His Police Escort At The Airport Today appeared first on Liveofofo.


          Temi Otedola: I Once Hated My Shoulders, The Way Y’all Hate My Knuckles   

Billionaire Daughter and Mr Eazi Girlfriend, Temi Otedola shares how she once hated her back/shoulders because of the stretch marks the same way her trolls hates her knuckles at the moment. The fashionista is however done with that, as she loves herself more now.

The post Temi Otedola: I Once Hated My Shoulders, The Way Y’all Hate My Knuckles appeared first on Liveofofo.


          Olukoya Ogungbeje: “Why I Am Defending Evans, The Kidnapper” — Lagos Lawyer   

Lagos lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, has justified his decision to defend suspected billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, a.k.a. Evans, in court. Ogungbeje has come under public criticisms for accepting the brief to seek freedom for Evans from police detention, or have him charged to court, weeks after his arrest. Nigerians had taken to the media to condemn […]

The post Olukoya Ogungbeje: “Why I Am Defending Evans, The Kidnapper” — Lagos Lawyer appeared first on Liveofofo.


          Walmart Could Lose $12.7 Billion in Sales Over Next Decade if Food Stamps Are Slashed   

Walmart Could Lose $12.7 Billion in Sales Over Next Decade if Food Stamps Are SlashedWalmart Could Lose $12.7 Billion in Sales Over Next Decade if Food Stamps Are Slashed



          Renaissance draws billions in new cash as love for quants blooms - Reuters   

Reuters

Renaissance draws billions in new cash as love for quants blooms
Reuters
While Renaissance and well-known competitors like D.E. Shaw and AQR have been around for decades, they have become newly popular after a run of strong returns, as has a growing crop of smaller rivals. Another stand-out fund that has been pulling in ...

and more »

          Watch BizWireTV: Kiva.org Reaches Billion Dollar Mark in Crowd-Funding Loans and Nat Geo Releases Coal Documentary on Free Streaming Platforms   
...Store and Google Play for Android ( News - Alert ) devices. Sponsored Headline UnitedHealthcare and 4-H Extend Partnershp to Bring Food Budgeting and Nutrition Education to Additional 50,000 Children and Families. Top of the Wire Kiva.org reaches $1 billion milestone ...

          Orange County pays off $1-billion bankruptcy debt   

Orange County has paid off the last of $1 billion worth of bonds it raised to haul itself out of bankruptcy.

The Orange County Register says, after 22 years, the county on Saturday delivered the final payment to bondholders.

With interest, the repayment totaled about $1.6 billion.

The county still...


          What’s NYext For Local?   

one billion dollars dr evilGannett’s announcement yesterday that its ReachLocal division has acquired SweetIQ really pissed me off in that the day after Yext’s* IPO I had a great conversation with a Local vet where I predicted that the success of the IPO would set off a wave a M&A in the Local Marketing Tech sector and damned if […]

The post What’s NYext For Local? appeared first on Local SEO Guide.


          The Japanese Company Betting Billions to Prepare for the Singularity   
SoftBank's Big Bet on Singularity
           Nokia To Supply Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group With Advanced Wireless Networking Technology For Smart City Services    
Friday 30 June, 2017
Nokia to deploy LTE in 700 MHz band to support smart city and public safety applications in Hongkou district of ShanghaiNokia's first commercial LTE 700 MHz contract in China intended to make city services smarter in fast-growing area of China's largest city

30 June, 2017

Shanghai - Nokia is to supply a LTE network in the 700 megahertz spectrum band to the Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group, a diversified broadcasting, media, manufacturing and real estate company. The deployment will transform Shanghai's fast-growing former industrial district of Hongkou through a range of new smart city services, for which Nokia will supply advanced wireless communications based on FDD-LTE technology for smart city and public safety applications. Nokia Shanghai Bell, Nokia's JV company in China will provide the deployment and services.

The LTE network is being deployed to provide broadband connectivity for city services, specifically high-speed wireless links to video from cameras used for traffic control, video monitoring and analysis, and additional services in future. The network is based on Nokia's FDD-LTE solution and offers the data capacity needed to support a variety of bandwidth-intensive video formats, including high-definition and ultra-high definition 4K, 3D and more. This deployment marks Nokia's first for LTE technology in the 700 MHz spectrum band in China.

In addition to network infrastructure, Nokia Shanghai Bell's global services team will provide services including systems integration, network planning and implementation.

The project builds on Nokia's strong track-record supporting smart city initiatives worldwide. It also highlights the progress of Nokia's strategy of expanding its customer activities outside of the traditional telecommunications sphere, a key focus of the company.

Ding Yong, General Manager of Oriental Pearl Digital TV, said: 'Nokia has been an excellent partner for these new smart city initiatives. Their LTE 700 MHz technology performed extremely well in testing and the strong local support from Nokia Shanghai Bell has been very beneficial as well. We look forward to our continued close cooperation to bring smart city services to the people of Shanghai.

Jin Jian, head of Enterprise & Public Sector at Nokia Shanghai Bell, said: 'This collaboration with Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group is an important first step in efforts to bring smarter services to China's largest city and critical business and innovation hub. As a leading provider of wireless connectivity solutions, Nokia is honored to play a key role in such an important project.'

Key facts:

LTE currently serves more than two billion subscribers globally today and is expected to reach 75% of the world's population by 2020.Low frequency bands, such as the 700MHz, allow for excellent coverage with a reduced number of base stations.With technology enhancements, LTE not only serves mobile broadband users but also delivers efficient and reliable connectivity for the Internet of Things and critical applications needed for public safety networks.

Resources:

Connect with Nokia:

About NokiaWe create the technology to connect the world. Powered by the research and innovation of Nokia Bell Labs, we serve communications service providers, governments, large enterprises and consumers, with the industry's most complete, end-to-end portfolio of products, services and licensing.

From the enabling infrastructure for 5G and the Internet of Things, to emerging applications in virtual reality and digital health, we are shaping the future of technology to transform the human experience. nokia.com

Media Enquiries:NokiaCommunicationsPhone: +358 10 448 4900Email: press.services@nokia.com



No media attached. Please contact Pressat Wire for more information.


Distributed by http://www.pressat.co.uk/
          Chancellor Philip Hammond under pressure to find £4billion to give public sector workers a pay rise   
PHILIP Hammond is under pressure to find £4billion to give public sector workers a pay rise AND keep Theresa May in power. Cabinet colleagues are urging the Chancellor to end the seven-year wage squeeze on doctors, nurses, teachers, armed forces and care staff. They want him to make the first move now – before he […]
          Think Your Data is Safe? Think Again   
Five words or less(NewsUSA) - Sponsored News - No matter who you are or what business you are in, you're vulnerable to a cyber attack. That's the unfortunate reality of the times we live in. Think you're immune? There are millions of cyberattacks in the United States every year, with big companies like Home Depot, Adobe Systems, Sony, Citigroup, Target, Facebook, Evernote and The New York Times taking the biggest hits and falling victim. And like Fortune 500 companies that seemingly have the resources to battle data breaches, small businesses are just as exposed, if not more so. According to a Verizon Data Breach Investigations Report more than 70 percent of the businesses in the study that were breached had fewer than 100 employees. Those breaches result in huge losses. Trend Micro found that "cybercriminals steal as much as $1 billion a year from SMBs in the United States and Europe, alone." Which begs the question: If both large and small companies and the U.S. government can be compromised (even with security protocols in place), then what does that mean for individuals? It's a question that Dr. Robert Short, chief technology officer and chief technical scientist of VirnetX, struggled with and finally answered in the form of Gabriel, a set of secure encrypted communication apps derived from a CIA-sponsored Department of Defense project. "The genesis of Gabriel really was trying to solve the problem of how you make security transparent to the user. The means to automatically create a secure connection whenever a secure connection is needed to wherever it is needed, and create it on demand," says Short. "That has always been the vision behind Gabriel." The difference between Gabriel and other products, says Short, is that users do not have to transmit data to or store data with any third party, including VirnetX. In this way, data is stored only on their own devices. Essentially, users maintain control of their own data. Gabriel users also have secure, encrypted (spamless) email, text messages, free voice and video calls and picture or file share with other trusted Gabriel users in their network -- all directly from their personal device. Gabriel runs on iPhone, iPad, Android, Windows and Mac OSX. For more information or to download Gabriel go to gabrielsecure.com, the App Store or the Google Play store.
          Budget passes test run, misses deadline   
A $36.5 billion plan to rebuild Illinois’ crumbling finances passed a critical test on Friday, but a powerful legislative leader said no deal would be reached before a midnight deadline — meaning Illinois will enter its third consecutive fiscal year without a budget. The proposal would be fueled by a $5 billion income tax increase […]
          BHP chairman says $20 bln investment in shale was a mistake   
SYDNEY, June 29- BHP Billiton's Chairman Jac Nasser said on Thursday BHP's $20 billion investment in U.S. shale oil and gas six years ago was, in hindsight, a mistake. Activist shareholder and hedge fund Elliott Management, holding 4.1 percent of BHP's London- listed shares, has been trying to gain support from other shareholders to persuade BHP to sell the shale oil...
          Cruising the Web   
For all those people who think that Trump's tweets are brilliant at reaching the public and throwing his opponents off balance or whatever other bit of analysis used to show that somehow he's playing three-dimensional chess while the rest of the world can't even set up the checker board, is this really a set of tweets that makes you proud that he's your president?




These morning tweets follow other tweets touting ones supporting policy actions by his administration and the GOP. Does he think anyone will pay attention to any of that when he's tweeting comments on a morning show's appearance and the show's ratings? It's as if he's taken a master a class on self-sabotage.

Isn't he supposed to be in the middle of trying to help a GOP repeal of Obamacare?

Remember when conservatives ridiculed Obama interview talking to GloZell, the woman who is mainly known for eating cereal while sitting in a bathub of milk or going on Between Two Ferns? Well, was any of that less respectful of the office of the presidency than such tweets? I have come to regard Trump's tweets as a verbal expression of his id. That is the level he operates at and we get a glimpse at what impulses control him through Twitter. All his advisers urging him to focus on policy and presenting an image of gravitas are the ego trying to mediate between those impulses and reality. They might win out for hours, even days sometimes, but the id is there ready to take over.

There used to be a time when Republicans claimed that character mattered in the presidency. Today...not so much.

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Canada thinks it can control the Internet.
The Supreme Court of Canada ruled against Google on Wednesday in a closely-watched intellectual property case over whether judges can apply their own country's laws to all of the Internet.

In a 7-2 decision, the court agreed a British Columbia judge had the power to issue an injunction forcing Google to scrub search results about pirated products not just in Canada, but everywhere else in the world too.

Those siding with Google, including civil liberties groups, had warned that allowing the injunction would harm free speech, setting a precedent to let any judge anywhere order a global ban on what appears on search engines. The Canadian Supreme Court, however, downplayed this objection and called Google's fears "theoretical."
Charles C. W. Cooke comments,
That amusing episode of The I.T. Crowd notwithstanding, “the Internet” is not a single black box somewhere in London, but a massively decentralized network of networks that, while conforming to a few agreed-upon technical specifications, gives new meaning to the word “diffuse.” Or, put another way, “the Internet” is a patchwork quilt of cables, satellites, switches, service providers, cell phones, desktops, laptops, web-servers, and protocols that, taken together, forms the sprawling web to which we are all so accustomed. The beauty of this arrangement is that anybody can participate. Want to be the next Facebook? To start with, at least, all you’ll need is a domain name, an internet connection, and a computer, and . . . that’s it. Though there are certain breakpoints (IP allocation, root DNS, etc.), there is no central permission structure that newcomers have to navigate. It’s open. It’s wild. It’s wonderful.

Now, this is not to say that censorship is impossible. It’s not. If a government wishes to block access to a particular site within the physical borders over which it has jurisdiction, it can do so. Likewise, websites and services that contradict local law can be legally removed, and, if it so wishes, a government can demand that any organization operating on a network within its borders must conform to its rules. What it can’t do, however, is export those judgments abroad.

Suppose that I, a permanent resident of the United States, were to host a website that contained speech that was banned in, say, Germany. Certainly, the German authorities could prevent Germans from seeing my site. And, if anyone chose to mirror my site on server inside Germany, they could shut that person down quite quickly. But they couldn’t have me shut down in America, and they couldn’t prevent people in other countries from accessing my site over the web. My server would be in America, connected to a network in America, subject to the law in America, and guaranteed the protections to which Americans are entitled. The German government, annoyed as it might be, would have to accept that....

And that, ultimately, is why the Canadian Court’s decision is so hilarious. I understand why people are worried about the idea — if taken seriously, it would give any less-free-than-America country an effective veto over the First Amendment. But they shouldn’t fret too much: The judges can say what they like, but their edict is simply unenforceable. If it wishes to do so, the government of Canada can prevail upon Google to abide by its rules within Canada. In addition, it can regulate the web in Canada to prevent access to sites it dislike. But it can’t force Google in America or France or Australia or Singapore to do a single goddamned thing. And thank goodness for that, eh?
I hope that he is correct, but we've seen the EU slapping a $2.7 billion fine on Google because the EU thinks it violates antitrust for Google to promote Google Shopping sites over other shopping sites. I'm not sure what there is about a FREE service like Google that the Europeans don't understand. Are European citizens actually hurt by Google giving them a free shopping search engine and then putting their items at the top? Would they prefer to pay for their search engines? Please, just keep your hands off Google. As more countries try and figure out ways to make money off of fining Google, they should consider the unintended consequences.
“The EU has effectively decided that some companies have become too big to innovate,” Robert Atkinson, president of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation, a Washington-based think tank, said in a statement following the Google Shopping decision. “The EU’s actions have created a cloud of uncertainty that will make large tech companies overly cautious about making changes to the user experience and service offerings that would benefit consumers.”

Jonathan Tobin applies Occam's Razor
to explain why Obama didn't do more about Russia's attempts to interfere in our election last year.
But the real problem here is not so much Barack Obama’s failure to act as the most plausible reason for his inaction: Vladimir Putin’s capers didn’t impact the election results.
Despite the efforts by Democrats to blame Russia for Hillary Clinton's loss and their frustration that Obama didn't do more about it, there really is no evidence that the WikiLeaks revelations from John Podesta's emails had any effect on the course of the election.
But there’s a simpler, even more plausible explanation for Obama’s inaction: The president saw that the hacking was having almost no impact on the course of the campaign and thus wasn’t going to mess with the results. Far from the crime of the century, it was, at worst, a minor annoyance to Clinton that Obama obviously felt didn’t warrant a major dustup with Putin.

It’s true that Russia’s actions were outrageous and deserved a strong US response, both then and now. It can also be argued that the public had a right to know about it. But it was only after Clinton lost and she and her supporters began searching for excuses that Russia’s actions were considered an important factor in the outcome.

While Putin was way out of line, the impact of the WikiLeaks document dumps on Clinton’s candidacy was marginal at best.

The contents of the Democratic National Committee e-mails were embarrassing to Podesta and then-DNC chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who wound up losing her job after proof of DNC collusion with Clinton against Bernie Sanders was produced. But there was almost nothing in those documents that related directly to Clinton, let alone being enough to influence voters.

Every WikiLeaks story was also almost immediately overshadowed by other, more damaging gaffes or revelations about Trump, such as his attack on a Gold Star family or the release of the infamous “Access Hollywood” tape. Nothing the Russians did matched the damage done by either of those Trump disasters.
Instead of looking for some external events or action, just admit that Hillary was a lousy candidate. That should actually be comforting to the Democrats. With such a compromised candidate whom so many Americans just never liked, they still won the popular vote and came really close to winning the states that put Trump over the top. If they can pick a better candidate in 2020, and can make an appeal for the voters they lost in the Rust Belt, chances are pretty strong that they'll win that year. They should be more concerned about forging a message that doesn't repel independents and those voters they lost in 2016. That's their real challenge and focusing all the time on Russia, Russia, Russia won't help them achieve that goal.


Good to know.
Tell your friendly environmentalist activist. But they're not really interested.
The benefits of fracking far outweigh its costs not only economically, but environmentally, a Stanford University geophysicist said Friday.

After teaching geophysics at Stanford for 30 years Mark Zoback took the helm of Stanford's new Natural Gas Initiative three years ago, he said, because of gas's environmental benefits.

"We did it because there were so many important and obvious environmental benefits to the utilization of natural gas," Zoback said. "So it’s somewhat ironic to be asked to argue for the notion that these benefits outweigh the environmental costs, when it’s the environmental benefits that got me into this business in the first place."

Zoback's remarks opened the annual debate at Stanford's Silicon Valley Energy Summit, and were swiftly challenged by representatives of the Sierra Club and the Natural Resources Defense Counci
Zoback argued that natural gas can replace coal and "dirty diesel" at significant scale throughout the world, supporting economic growth while slashing carbon emissions. (When burned, natural gas emits about half the CO2 that coal does).

The Senate has some really dumb rules. And the minority party can use them to slow everything down to a standstill. Chuck Schumer is taking advantage of every tool that the rules provide.
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer used an upper chamber procedure Wednesday to block a national security briefing hosted by the Senate Judiciary Committee, irritating Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley.

The rule that Schumer had invoked, which he has been exercising the use of over the past two weeks, blocks Senate committee business from happening two hours after the Senate convenes session for the day. Schumer has consistently used the procedure as a way to delay business in Senate to make demands on Republicans on the health care bill.

The rarely-used tactic has cut short a committee hearing on free speech, stopped a hearing on Russian meddling in the U.S. elections and blocked a mark-up to advance bipartisan anti-human trafficking legislation....

Grassley had sent a joint letter with subcommittee judiciary chairman Lindsey Graham to the FBI Tuesday requesting all documents related to the FBI FISA surveillance requests on the Russia investigation.

“Today, the Judiciary Committee was set to hear from senior intelligence officials about highly sensitive intelligence gathering authorities that will soon require action from Congress. It’s disturbing and reckless for the Minority Leader to block the briefing. We’ve seen too many recent reminders of how unsafe the world is today. This is no time to play politics with our national security,” he said.
If they could use the nuclear option to get rid of a much more prominent rule concerning filibusters of Supreme Court nominees, why not use it to get rid of this stupid rule. If it's a "rarely-used tactic," no one except the angry members of the minority party will miss it.


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I had so much fun last night. I'm visiting my daughters in D.C. and we went to the Nats-Cubs game. I haven't seen a live baseball game in about 50 years since I was a kid and we'd go to the Cubs games. So I scheduled my trip to catch the game. After falling behind in the seventh inning, I thought it was pretty hopeless for the Cubs based on the way they've been playing this year. But they rallied in the ninth inning to go ahead on a triple by Jon Jay. It was so exciting and I could celebrate with all the other Cubs fans in the stadium including a cute little girl, about 10 years old, sitting with her family of Cubs fans in front of me who told her parents that John Jay had written five of the Federalist Papers. Exactly right and the Cubs' Jon Jay was a hero tonight. Go Federalists!


What a blast! And then as walked out of the stadium and came back on the Metro and hear all the Nationals fans complaining about the Nationals' bullpen. Eh, they're still doing well. I'm just hoping that the Cubs are recovering their mojo. At least their closer, Wade Davis, another historically relevant name on the Cubs roster


          Climate change could force billions to migrate   
Many of the climatic events occurring in nations around the world are the direct result of the 1.1-degree global temperature rise that Earth has already experienced. We will soon see how much wors ...
          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project....
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Toronto, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Mon, 19 Jun 2017 17:46:14 GMT - View all Toronto, ON jobs
          Driver Delivery - Chauffeur Livreur - Sherwin-Williams - Toronto, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Fri, 09 Jun 2017 20:40:13 GMT - View all Toronto, ON jobs
          Sales Coordinator - Sherwin-Williams - Toronto, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales
From Sherwin-Williams - Thu, 08 Jun 2017 02:34:02 GMT - View all Toronto, ON jobs
          Internal Field Auditor - Sherwin-Williams - Toronto, ON   
WELCOME TO SHERWIN-WILLIAMS Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Thu, 01 Jun 2017 14:35:27 GMT - View all Toronto, ON jobs
          Driver Delivery - Chauffeur Livreur - Sherwin-Williams - Oakville, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 05:55:09 GMT - View all Oakville, ON jobs
          Sales Coordinator - Sherwin-Williams - Mississauga, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales
From Sherwin-Williams - Thu, 29 Jun 2017 17:55:09 GMT - View all Mississauga, ON jobs
          Driver Delivery - Chauffeur Livreur - Sherwin-Williams - Mississauga, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Fri, 26 May 2017 08:34:01 GMT - View all Mississauga, ON jobs
          Management/Sales Trainee (Entry Level) - Toronto Metro District - Sherwin-Williams - Mississauga, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Sat, 06 May 2017 08:47:00 GMT - View all Mississauga, ON jobs
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Airdrie, AB   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Tue, 27 Jun 2017 17:54:13 GMT - View all Airdrie, AB jobs
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Calgary, AB   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Mon, 19 Jun 2017 23:46:39 GMT - View all Calgary, AB jobs
          Management/Sales Trainee (Entry Level) - Southern Alberta District - Sherwin-Williams - Calgary, AB   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Sat, 06 May 2017 08:47:01 GMT - View all Calgary, AB jobs
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Oshawa, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Thu, 22 Jun 2017 17:49:49 GMT - View all Oshawa, ON jobs
          Driver Delivery - Chauffeur Livreur - Sherwin-Williams - Whitby, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Fri, 03 Mar 2017 21:24:42 GMT - View all Whitby, ON jobs
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Kitchener, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Thu, 29 Jun 2017 18:03:58 GMT - View all Kitchener, ON jobs
          Driver Delivery - Chauffeur Livreur - Sherwin-Williams - Waterloo, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Wed, 21 Jun 2017 17:51:00 GMT - View all Waterloo, ON jobs
          Sales Associate - Sherwin-Williams - Waterloo, ON   
Welcome to Sherwin-Williams Sherwin-Williams is the largest coatings company in North America, and the third largest in the world. With $11 billion in sales,
From Sherwin-Williams - Wed, 21 Jun 2017 17:48:51 GMT - View all Waterloo, ON jobs
          HDMI Alt Mode for USB Type-C   
The HDMI Alt Mode for USB Type-C connector will allow HDMI-enabled source devices such as smartphones, tablets, laptops and camcorders to utilize a USB Type-C connector to directly connect to the Billions of HDMI-enabled displays (which is included with 100% of flat panel TVs), and deliver native HDMI signals over a simple cable without the […]
          Microchip ARM, PIC and AVR Microcontrollers   
Microchip acquired Atmel in 2016 for $3.56 Billion, this among other acquisitions by Microchip, grows their Microcontroller portfolio to include Atmel's ARM based SAM Microcontrollers (which I have previously filmed here: SAM S70 and E70 ARM Cortex-M7, SAM L21 ARM Cortex-M0+, Atmel BTLC1000 Bluetooth ARM Cortex-M0, SMART SAM W25 Wi-Fi for IoT with ARM Cortex-M0+, […]
          Word To The President: 'Professionalism'   
A chorus of distinguished names from President Trump's own party have condemned his personal attack on Mika Brzezinski and Joe Scarborough of MSNBC. I'd rather not repeat the president's words, which are ugly. A number of Republicans told Trump his tweets have been beneath the dignity of the presidency. "This has to stop," Sen. Susan Collins of Maine tweeted. "– we all have a job – 3 branches of gov't and media. We don't have to get along, but we must show respect and civility." Based on his campaign and five months in the White House, I do not know if calls for respect, civility and dignity reach President Trump. Please let me try another word: professionalism. I like to think New Yorkers in particular respect professionalism, when they see it in a Broadway singer, a billionaire, a politician, police officer, a street vendor, or Derek Jeter. Professionals respect the public. They treat each other with respect. They do their jobs and don't kvetch when other professionals do theirs.
          John Herzog on "A Billion to One"   

Join us for a lunchtime program with the Museum's Founder and Chairman Emeritus, John Herzog, on his new book about the legendary Wall Street firm his family founded.


          A trading startup tackling a key problem in the world's most important market has raised $10 million   

Susan Estes OpenDoorA new trading platform focused on hard-to-trade segments of one of the most important markets has raised $10 million from private investors.

OpenDoor Securities will use the funds to improve its connectivity to current customers, according to a statement.

The platform is auction based and is what's called an all-to-all marketplace for off-the-run Treasurys and Treasury Inflation Protected Securities (TIPS). In plain English, that means the platform hosts auctions for instruments at a particular time. 

The startup is trying to tackle challenging trading conditions in what is arguably the world's most important market.  The US government bond market makes up around 30% of the fixed-income market, according to the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association and American Bankers Association. In a letter to the Securities and Exchange Commission last year, they said the Treasury market is  "the most important global benchmark for pricing and hedging spread asset classes and is a key transmission mechanism for US monetary policy."

However, liquidity in the Treasurys market is divided between on-the-run Treasurys, or the most recently issued bonds and therefore the most liquid, and off-the-run bonds. Off-the-run bonds represent 98% of the total outstanding issuance in the US Treasury market, according to OpenDoor, but account for less than a third of average daily trading volume. 

The platform launched April 25, and the firm has seen more than $60 billion in orders placed since then. The firm has matched "multiple billions in US off-the-run Treasuries and TIPS orders with seamless settlement," OpenDoor said in a statement. 

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: HENRY BLODGET: High valuations mean low expected returns


          Bitcoin's 'bubble' is unlike anything we've ever seen   

There are still some question marks about whether bitcoin is in a bubble. But the speed of its price growth is already nearly unmatched.

The cryptocurrency has surged 162% in very volatile trading this year amid continued demand. But as the chart below illustrates, bitcoin's longer-term rally by as much as 1,000% was swifter than homebuilder stocks in the lead up to the housing crash. 

Jeffrey Kleintop, the chief global investment strategist at Charles Schwab, said that "the 10-year buildup is important to how embedded the bubble becomes and how much impact the bursting has on the economy and markets."

In other words, this is simply unprecedented. But arguably, a bitcoin crash probably won't have the same ripple effect on the economy as some other assets would. 

Billionaire Marc Cuban is among those who have said bitcoin prices are in a bubble. "When everyone is bragging about how easy they are making $=bubble," he tweeted

Ethereum, another cryptocurrency, is up by more than 3,000% this year

 

SEE ALSO: Millennials are flocking towards some of the most speculative ways to invest

DON'T MISS: PRESENTING: The most important charts in the world from the brightest minds on Wall Street

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NOW WATCH: An economist explains what could happen if Trump pulls the US out of NAFTA


          Warren Buffett is now the largest owner of 2 of the world's biggest banks (BAC, JPM, WFC, GS)   

warren buffett

Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway is now the biggest owner of two of the world's largest banks: Bank of America and Wells Fargo.

On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve cleared the way for Buffett to become Bank of America's largest shareholder.

It passed all the big banks on their so-called stress tests, giving them permission to use their capital for things beyond buffering against disaster, including share buybacks and dividend payments.

Bank of America raised its dividend to $0.12 a common share.

That made it compelling for Berkshire to convert its preferred shares into common stock, giving it shareholder ownership, and earning as much as $12 billion in profit. Berkshire announced on Friday that it would exercise its warrants to buy 700 million common shares of Bank of America, the third-largest US bank by market cap, instead of waiting until just before their expiry in 2021.

In a statement, the bank said it welcomed Buffett's decision.

With $2.19 trillion in assets, Bank of America ranked ninth in the world, according to an S&P Global Market Intelligence ranking released in April.

Buffett's initial investment in the bank dating back to 2011 was a thumbs-up of sorts to CEO Brian Moynihan, who had recently taken the helm. It was also a bet that the bank would recover from the fallout of toxic mortgage securities.

He acquired $5 billion of Bank of America preferred stock with a 6% dividend, or $300 million annually, in August 2011, at a time when investors worried about the bank's capital needs, Reuters reported.

The conglomerate said last July that it owned more than 10% of Wells Fargo, which on Friday amounted to nearly 537 million shares, according to Bloomberg. It's the second-largest bank in the US by market capitalization and was the 10th largest in the world by assets, according to S&P.

Berkshire Hathaway also owns smaller stakes in Goldman Sachs and JPMorgan.

SEE ALSO: Japan can help us better understand one of the biggest puzzles facing the US economy

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NOW WATCH: An economist explains what could happen if Trump pulls the US out of NAFTA


          Canadians celebrated the nation's 150th anniversary with fireworks and poutine — here are the photos   

justin trudeau

It's Canada's birthday!

July 1, also known as Canada Day, marks the 150th anniversary of the confederation. An estimated half a million people are expected to attend celebrations in the capital Ottawa, where the government spent approximately half a billion Canadian dollars (US $386 million) on the festivities.

See how Canadians and a couple of royal visitors celebrated.

SEE ALSO: How to move to Canada and become a Canadian citizen

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau kicked off the festivities in a visit with Prince Charles, whose mother, the Queen, remains Canada's head of state 150 years after its independence.



Prince Charles and his wife Camilla spent the last several days visiting museums, monuments, and even startups in Canada. July 1 marks the end of their royal tour.



The Duchess of Cornwall greeted onlookers outside the Canadian Museum of History.



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

          Silicon Valley's old boy power structure is getting toppled and the repercussions will be huge   

China slip fall soldiers

When Chris Sacca took the stage at the South by Southwest conference in March, the "Shark Tank" judge kicked off his talk by doling out cans of beers to the women sitting in the front rows. 

"We’re going to do this unlike Uber. The women get them first," Sacca said to the crowd of fans that would mob him like a celebrity afterwards. 

The beer stunt was a snipe at one of his early portfolio companies that had come under internal investigation for claims of sexism in the workplace. But now four months later, Sacca himself has issued a mea culpa, confessing that he "personally contributed" to making the tech industry "inhospitable for women" after being accused in a New York Times article of inappropriately touching a woman's face without her consent. (He later "disputed" the accusation.)

The apology from one of Silicon Valley's most visible and powerful venture capitalists comes at a time when the tech industry is confronting its shameful legacy of sexist behavior. It hasn't been a secret that women in technology face sexism, especially in venture capital where women only make up 7% of partners. But until now, the status quo went for the most part unchallenged and the offenders operated with impunity. 

That's why the events of the last few months are so remarkable. The stories of venture capitalists asking women entrepreneurs for sex or touching them underneath the table during pitch meetings have multiplied as more and more women come forward. And it's already having a profound effect. 

In the last month, Uber's CEO was asked to resign after a detailed investigation into harassment and bad behavior among employees and managers at the $69 billion startup. Another investor was forced out of his firm after initially denying accusations of sexual harassment from multiple women. 

Dave McClure, the leader of a famous Silicon Valley startup accelerator 500 Startups, was removed from the day-to-day operations after women came forward with allegations of misconduct. In one case detailed by the New York Times, McClure told a woman that he wasn't sure if he should hire her or hit on her.

Despite Silicon Valley being a place that's promoted itself as a bastion of progressive ideals and meritocracy, each domino being tipped shows that the sexism problem that had rooted itself in the boy's club of venture is worse and worse — and the old school boy's club of Silicon Valley is being toppled as a result.

The problem with power

The gender imbalance in Silicon Valley is well-documented, but the undercurrent of sexism and harassment that is its byproduct has been harder to pinpoint.

To be sure, some of the worst offenders have become "open secrets" among women entrepreneurs. There's wiki pages that list venture capitalists and tech leaders who have been accused of inappropriate behavior. And one startup accelerator, Y Combinator, keeps track of venture capitalists that have behaved badly — harassment or deal-wise — and cuts them out from ever getting a chance to invest as the startups leave its program. 

But it's tough to overstate the precarious path that must be navigated by any woman who wants to pursue the tech dream and create the next Facebook or Snapchat. 

Without having a deep network in Silicon Valley or getting into one of the accelerators, it's hard for women entrepreneurs to know who to avoid or have a support network to turn to if they feel like someone has crossed the line. Even if they do report it, they're often silenced or told to sign non-disclosure agreements so people never find out. 

Meanwhile, the men of Silicon Valley have continued to hold the power. Of the venture capitalist deal makers that fund the next generation of Facebooks, only 7% of the partners at top VC firms are women, according to a Crunchbase study.

And the money follows the same gendered lines. Women received $1.5 billion in funding last year versus $58.2 billion for men, according to PitchBook data. Just think, what kind of world-changing apps and tech products would we have today if women had the same opportunities and influence in the industry as men? 

Make no mistake: venture capitalists control the check books that can fund next America's innovation engine and too often it's been an old boys club that makes deals in hot tub jam sessions or all-male ski trips

The Trump effect

Yet the recent wave of women stepping forward after years of trying to shine light on the issue is finally crashing the power structure. 

Venture firms are scrambling to institute formal policies around harassment. LinkedIn founder and Greylock partner, Reid Hoffman, made a public plea for firms to sign the Decency Pledge to acknowledge that the relationship between venture capitalists and entrepreneurs is the same as a manager and employee. (Yes, Silicon Valley is at the point where its dealmakers are finally publicly promising to be decent to women.)

The public apology from Sacca shows that no venture capitalist can go untouched, no matter how famous or how many amazing deals they've done. In some ways, it's the opposite of the Trump effect: the President was elected despite being on tape saying lecherous things. To this day, he continues to call out reporters and women for their looks. 

Yet the general revulsion to those antics has made Silicon Valley somehow look at its own secret shame. It's harder for an investor to say they are outraged by Trump's treatment of women when they're protecting their own peers who have asked for sex or rubbed a woman's thigh when they're supposed to be making a business deal. 

And while some argue that Trump's behavior has normalized this kind of locker-room talk towards women, in Silicon Valley, its greatest offenders are now getting exposed one-by-one. Venture firms have collapsed. Uber, the most valuable private tech startup, is undergoing a cultural reformation to save its company. Individuals like Sacca are making public apologies for their role in making tech "inhospitable" toward women. The Silicon Valley people and companies in powerful positions aren't immune like Trump has been — and that's only been more clear as more women entrepreneurs speak out against what's been up until now Silicon Valley's darkest secret. 

There will be more dominoes that fall, and more "disruption," as the industry finally comes to terms with this problem. But when the dust settles, you can be sure that the startups, products, and innovation coming from Silicon Valley will be stronger than ever.

SEE ALSO: 'Shark Tank' judge Chris Sacca apologizes for helping make tech hostile to women — after being accused of inappropriately touching a female investor

Join the conversation about this story »

NOW WATCH: BARBARA CORCORAN: Chris Sacca is 'probably the most arrogant Shark we've ever had'


          Credit cards are going the way of fax machines   

fax machine

This is a preview of a research report from BI Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service. To learn more about BI Intelligence, click here.

The modern smartphone is a remarkable device. A single device that fits in your pocket can do all the tasks that once required cameras, camcorders, GPS devices, watches, alarm clocks, calculators, and even TVs.    

But the next change might be the most radical of all—it could eliminate the need to carry cash and credit cards. 

The growing importance of the smartphone as the go-to computing device for every digital activity is having a profound effect everywhere you look, but it’s only the biggest story among many exciting developments in the world of payments:   

  • Apple Pay was first out of the gate, but now mobile wallets are everywhere you look—Android Pay, Google Pay, Chase Pay and even Walmart Pay are making smartphones a real alternative to carrying credit cards. And the potential for mobile wallets to limit a merchant’s fraud liability could help them really take off in acceptance for small businesses.   
  • As consumers move more purchasing online, gateway vendors that can act as a front-end processor for online businesses are seeing explosive growth.   PayPal-owned Braintree grew 111% YoY in the number of cards on file in Q4 2015, while Stripe and Klarna now have multi-billion dollar valuations.
  • Mobile Point-Of-Sale (mPOS) startups like Square and ShopKeep have pioneered a whole new payments niche—accepting payments via tablets and smartphones.   Coupling their transactions capabilities with new apps can revolutionize a small business’ inventory management, marketing, loyalty and even payroll.   
  • Mobile Peer-to-Peer payments in the U.S. are forecast to grow from $5.6 billion in 2014 to nearly $175 billion by 2019 as consumers increasingly skip the hassle of writing a check or going to an ATM.   But smartphone vendors like Apple could cripple the dominant player of 2016 (Venmo) if they make a serious push to own the space.   

If your job or your company is involved in payment processing in any way, you know how complex this industry is. And you know that you simply can’t understand where the next big digital opportunities are unless you know the key players and roles in each step of the payments “supply chain:”   

  • Acquirers
  • Processors
  • Issuers
  • Card Networks
  • Independent sales organizations and merchant service providers
  • Gateways
  • Hardware and software providers

Fortunately, managing analyst John Heggestuen and research analyst Evan Bakker of BI Intelligence, Business Insider's premium research service, have compiled a detailed report that breaks down everything you need to know—whether you’re a payments industry veteran or a newcomer who is still getting a basic knowledge of this complex world.

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Among the big picture insights you’ll get from this new report, titled The Payments Ecosystem Report: Everything You Need to Know About The Next Era of Payment Processing:

  • The 5 key events of 2015 that have set up 2016 as a watershed year for the entire payments ecosystem. 
  • The basics of traditional card processing from the start of the process through to the very end.    
  • Why new players and innovations like prepaid cards, store cards, and PIN debit transactions are gaining market share and creating new opportunities.   
  • The effects—good and bad—of the transition to new mobile payment methods.   New players and old have surprising threats and opportunities in areas as varied as carrier billing, remittances, wearables, and more.   

This exclusive report takes you inside these big issues to explore:

  • The critical steps in credit card transactions and how they are changing.
  • The six major types of organizations involved in the payments ecosystem.
  • The significant differences for industry players who operate closed-loop networks and offer prepaid cards.
  • The challenges and opportunities facing hardware and software providers for the payments sector.   
  • The 8 reasons why mobile wallets are growing so fast and how they will disrupt all aspects of the mobile ecosystem.    
  • The exciting possibilities ahead in fast-growing payments subsectors like remittances, connected devices and mobile P2P payments.   
  • And much more.

To get your copy of this invaluable guide, choose one of these options:

  1. Subscribe to an ALL-ACCESS Membership with BI Intelligence and gain immediate access to this report AND over 100 other expertly researched deep-dive reports, subscriptions to all of our daily newsletters, and much more. >> START A MEMBERSHIP
  2. Purchase the report and download it immediately from our research store. >> BUY THE REPORT

The choice is yours. But however you decide to acquire this report, you’ve given yourself a powerful advantage in your understanding of the payments ecosystem.

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NOW WATCH: Harvard Business School professor explains the most important problem we have in finance today and how to fix it


          These are the 11 biggest hedge funds in the world   

ray-dalio

2016 was a tough year for hedge funds. 

The industry as a whole only delivered a 5.4% return for clients, well below the S&P 500's return of 11.9%, according to data from eVestment.

Poor performance and high fees drove money out of the money managers' funds, with about $70 billion pulled out of the funds last year, the biggest drop since 2009, according to data tracker HFR.

But not all firms saw their funds shrink, according to Institutional Investor's Alpha's recently released 2017 Hedge Fund 100 list. The annual list, which ranks the world's largest hedge funds by assets, shows that many of the top funds' assets have grown by double digits. 

Ray Dalio's Bridgewater Associates, a Connecticut-based firm with $122 billion in hedge fund assets under management, took the top spot on the list. Its hedge fund AuM at the beginning of 2017 were up about 17% from the same time last year. 

The funds that witnessed the most impressive growth, according to the list, were so-called quant funds. Such funds rely on algorithms or computer programs to guide their investing. Renaissance Technologies, one of the best known and oldest quant firms, saw its assets balloon by 42%, year-over-year. It moved up to the fourth spot on the list, up from twelfth last year. 

Two Sigma, another quant fund, snagged a higher spot on the list. Its assets under management are up 28% from last year. 

Here are the top 11 funds by hedge fund assets, according to the full list. 

SEE ALSO: Millennials are about to benefit from 'one of the largest intergenerational wealth transfers in history'

11. Elliott Management - $31.3 billion



10. Winton Group - $32 billion



9. Och-Ziff Capital Management - $33.5 billion



See the rest of the story at Business Insider

          Comment on Jedi Mind Skills Not Required: Check Out This $10 Billion Dollar Niche That Has Over 1.4 Billion People Attracting Things With Their Thoughts by NicheHacks   
I think whatever you're doing online you need a website even if it's Amazon FBA. You should take advantage of Amazon but you 100% need to build your brand off of Amazon too because Amazon owns Amazon and Amazon can stop you selling on their in an instant. It happens. A lot. People go from making 6 figures a month on Amazon to finding themselves banned from Amazon and Amazon selling the exact same products instead. You can't have all your eggs in one basket.
          Comment on Jedi Mind Skills Not Required: Check Out This $10 Billion Dollar Niche That Has Over 1.4 Billion People Attracting Things With Their Thoughts by Susan   
Thanks so much for all of this very, very detailed report Stewart. At this time, I don't have a website of my own, I am an FBA seller on Amazon. Do you think it is possible to make a success without the site in this market? Thanks again,
          Food Waste Is Overwhelming. Here Are Five Things People Are Doing About It   
The food world is buzzing today about the latest news on just how often we waste perfectly good food. And we admit, the statistics are pretty depressing. About 40 percent of food in the United States today goes uneaten. The average American consumer wastes 10 times as much food as someone in Southeast Asia — up 50 percent from Americans in the 1970s. Yet, 1 in 6 Americans doesn't have enough to eat, says the U.S. Department of Agriculture. And food waste costs us about $165 billion a year and sucks up 25 percent of our freshwater supply. That's all according to the report with the not-so-subtle title, "Wasted: How America Is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm to Fork to Landfill," just released by the Natural Resources Defense Council. As we've reported, there are all kinds of offenders in this game, from restaurants to regular consumers and our refrigerators . But we thought we'd bring you some info on what some folks are doing to combat the waste and reroute the food where
          Philippines' Duterte sees "springtime of relationship" in China visit   

Chinese President Xi Jinping committed more than 9 billion dollars in loans for development projects at his meeting with President Rodrigo Duterte, the Philippine presidential communications Office announced on Thursday.


          AS DAKWA JHO LOW MILIKI DUA PASPORT   
Amerika Syarikat mendakwa ahli perniagaan, Low Taek Jho atau lebih dikenali sebagai Jho Low, 36, mempunyai dua pasport, satu dari Malaysia manakala satu lagi dari St Kitts dan Nevis, lapor The Edge.
Malaysia tidak membenarkan warganegaranya memiliki pasport dari negara lain dan tidak pasti bila Jho Low mendapatkan dokumen tersebut.
St Kitts adalah sebuah negara Caribbean kecil yang mempunyai reputasi untuk membeli pasport dengan harga serendah AS$250,000 (RM1,073,500), mana-mana warga asing boleh membeli kerakyatan tanpa perlu bermaustatin di situ.
Barang kemas MO1 hanya sekadar cerita, tiada bukti
Penguatkuasaan Jenayah Kewangan (FinCEN) sebelum ini pernah memberi amaran kepada St Kitts yang memberikan pasport kepada warganegara asing yang menyalahgunakan Program Kewarganegaraan oleh pelaburan untuk terlibat dalam kegiatan kewangan tidak sah.
Sebelum ini, Jabatan Kehakiman Amerika Syarikat (DOJ) memfailkan saman sivil untuk merampas aset yang dianggarkan bernilai lebih AS$1 bilion (RM4.2 billion) di mana Jho Low dituduh bersama beberapa individu lain mencuri daripada 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) yang ditubuhkan pada tahun 2009.
Jho Low juga merupakan individu utama dalam semua urusan melibatkan pihak bank namun sehingga kini beliau tidak disabitkan mana-mana kesalahan sama ada di Singapura atau Malaysia.
          When Chris Brown kept texting Rihanna   

Los Angeles, July 2 (IANS) Singer Chris Brown had no idea that his former girlfriend and singer Rihanna had already moved on from him and kept trying to reconcile with her by sending her text messages.

"He (Brown) was actually texting her for months and even thought about trying to win her back. But now, he feels like a chump because he had no idea she had a man. As far as Chris knew she was single," said a source, reports aceshowbiz.com.

However, the "Privacy" singer wasn't worried about Rihanna's relationship with the 29-year-old billionaire, Hassan Jameel.

"Chris isn't going to lose sleep over Rihanna's new relationship because he doesn't even think it will last," the source said.

--IANS

ks/nn/


          Naqvi, Rishi Kapoor inaugurate '8th Jagran Film Festival'   

New Delhi, July 2 (IANS) Minister of State for Minority Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and veteran actor Rishi Kapoor here on Saturday inaugurated the "8th Jagran Film Festival", which will travel to 16 cities across India and showcase over 400 films.

The festival will feature a retrospective on Rishi's acclaimed films including "Do Dooni Char", "Chandni", "Bobby", "Kapoor & Sons" and a part of "Mera Naam Joker".

"I am thankful that they are showing my films. I have been working in the industry for last 45 years, but nobody has showcased a retrospective of my work. I am very humbled by this. They are showing my eight-and-a-half films. This includes eight full films and one part of 'Mera Naam Joker'," Rishi said.

Also present at the inaugural ceremony were actresses Divya Dutta and Tannishtha Chatterjee.

The eighth edition of the festival kick-started with the screening of Farhan Akhtar and Annu Kapoor-starrer "The Fakir of Venice".

The Anand Surapur directorial tells the story of an Indian conman, who is hired to find a fakir who can bury himself in sand for an installation art project in Venice. He passes off a poor slum-dweller from Mumbai as the real thing, conning the European art world successfully.

The festival will pay a homage to late actors Vinod Khanna and Om Puri with the screenings of their films "Achanak" and "Mr. Kabaadi".

Speaking on the occasion, Naqvi said: "This is a memorable occasion as people who have taken art and films to each and every house are associated with this festival. I am happy that through this festival, social messages are being transmitted to small places across India via films."

While Information and Broadcasting Minister M. Venkaiah Naidu and the starcast of upcoming film "Mom", including Sridevi, Akshaye Khanna and Nawazuddin Siddiqui, were supposed to attend the opening ceremony, they were not able to make it to the event.

This year the festival will have Morocco as its country focus.

"We are pleased to showcase Moroccan films here. Bollywood is the oldest known cinema. Surprisingly, in Morocco, there are a few cinemas that are completely dedicated to the Indian movies. People there speak Indian languages just by watching Indian films," Moroccan Ambassador Mohamed Maliki told IANS.

The five-day Delhi leg of the film festival, which is talking place here at the Sri Fort Auditorium, will showcase Indian films like "Hindi Medium", "Pink", "Agneepath", "Shivaay", "M.S. Dhoni: The Untold Story", "Phillauri", "Sachin: A Billion Dreams", "Neerja", "Jolly LLB 2" and "Trapped".

Some films from different countries across the world that will be showcased this year include "Black Cat" (US), "Last Christmas" (Italy), "The Letterbox" (Turkey), "Adios Carmen" (Morocco), "The Bench" (Iran), "Inner Court" (Brazil) and "Letter to the Night" (France), among others.

After its Delhi leg, which will conclude on July 5, the festival will travel to cities like Kanpur, Lucknow, Allahabad, Varanasi, Patna, Ranchi, Jamshedpur, Bhopal, Indore, Hisar, Meerut and Raipur. The final leg of the festival will take place in Mumbai.

--IANS

sas/nir


          Economic Output in North Dakota from Oil & Gas Remains Strong   
By The Dakota Dispatch
The petroleum industry’s economic contributions remained strong in 2015 despite struggling commodity prices, according to the preliminary findings of a Economic Effects of Petroleum Industry being conducted by the North Dakota State University’s Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics. The oil and gas industry contributed $34.25 billion dollars into North Dakota’s economy in 2015. The figure is the second highest contribution since 2005 when the first study was released and was even higher than in 2011 when oil averaged above $87 per barrel.

“This study helps confirm that the petroleum industry remains one of the largest basic-sector industries in North Dakota in both good years and bad,” said Dean Bangsund, co-author of the study and research scientist for the department at NDSU. “Although the retraction in the markets caused undue hardships on the industry throughout 2015 and on into 2016, the benefits to individuals, the state and local governments, retailers and all other economic sectors continued to be strong, which has since reinforced the industry as a mainstay in North Dakota’s economy. This is especially true as oil production, versus oil field development, is increasing in relative economic importance.”

Because the industry relies on hundreds of contractors and subcontractors, the economic contributions extend beyond the mining and extraction industries. According to the study, retail trade once again saw the largest impact, taking in $8.85 billion of the $34.25 billion. Households, or personal income, saw the second-largest impact at $7.54 billion, and state and local governments rounded out the top three with $4.1 billion in royalties, taxes and other revenues from the oil and gas industry. More than six other industries in North Dakota also benefitted from oil and gas development.

“The industry has proven itself to be resilient in the face of downturns in the market,” said Ron Ness, president of the NDPC. “Through continued innovation and development, the industry is able to do more with less and have proven that they can weather these downturns and come out even stronger.”

Economic Output in North Dakota from Oil & Gas Remains Strong - The Dakota Dispatch

read more


          North Dakota's Oil Boom Fuels Economic Growth   
By USNews.com

This isn't your father's Fargo any more.

That a state so sparsely populated and geographically remote stands among the top-five nationally in a broad measure of economic, educational, health and other metrics speaks volumes about an economic boom that North Dakota has experienced during the past decade.

Indeed it is the state's economic growth – No. 1 in the Best States rankings – that helped propel it to No. 2 in the overall measure of state economies.

With among the lowest unemployment in the nation and highest labor force participation, North Dakota also ranks highly in the roads, energy infrastructure – and even internet service – that it provides for just over three-quarters of a million residents. Its highly ranked higher education, with among the nation's most affordable tuition, has helped the citizenry reach a high level of attainment of college degrees. All measures considered, the state ranks No. 4 overall.

While 90 percent of North Dakota's land still is devoted to farming – with one-fifth of the population employed in agriculture that produces most of the nation's canola and flaxseed and ranks No. 1 in dry navy and pinto beans – it's what lies beneath the surface of this Canadian border state's wide open land that explains much of the recent growth of a domain that as recently as 2010 counted fewer residents than it had during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

It's oil and natural gas – and the technology for extracting it – that have both boosted the state's economy and also added a new dimension of social controversy surrounding pipelines that the industry is attempting to push through the state. Yet the state also is counting gains in manufacturing and high-tech ventures that have helped diversify the economy as oil has occupied a growing share of it.

"Energy and ag have always been very strong in our state, and the oil boom has moved us forward, but we've also worked to diversify," says Sandy McMerty, co-deputy commissioner for the North Dakota Department of Commerce. 

Recently elected North Dakota Gov. Doug Burgum attributes the state's business sense to a long line of governors who came from the business world – in his case, the software industry. And he points to developments that hold promise for the future: A plant manufacturing the blades for 225-foot tall wind turbines employing 1,000 people, unmanned aerial aircraft mapping agriculture lands to amass mammoth data for improvement of crops, Microsoft "tapping in" to the state's well-educated workforce as the state attracts more young people.

"Our infrastructure is in great shape,'' the governor says – indeed, it ranks No. 6 in the Best States analysis. "The economic surpluses that we've had at the state level have allowed us to invest in infrastructure."

The Bakken Formation of oil and natural gas, among the largest contiguous deposits in the U.S., once was deemed infeasible for production. That was before hydraulic fracturing – an injection of water and chemicals into the black shale, siltstone and sandstone holding the oil, a process known as "fracking."

Before the oil boom, as recently as 2004, oil and gas production accounted for just 2 percent of the state's economy. By 2014, it accounted for almost 16 percent. And, while declining world prices for oil in recent years have dampened some of the Bakken boom's luster – and placed pressure on the small state's annual budget, forcing cuts in its esteemed public universities – overall oil production has held up for the most part.

There are fewer drilling rigs at work, but overall production slid to 1.17 million barrels per day in November from a peak of 1.23 million in December 2014 as drillers have pared operational costs. Drillers are employing new techniques that enable them to drill two miles down and then two miles horizontally, the governor notes, with the precision of someone picking the lock on a house.

"We've been a little bit down in production based on pricing,'' says McMerty, who is fluent in the daily price per barrel. "But energy companies are not short-term investment companies for the most part. They can ride out the lower prices."

The state's overall economic output more than doubled in 11 years, according to a Bureau of Economic Analysis report. The state's gross domestic product in 2013 reached a record $49.8 billion, up from $24.7 billion in 2002. In 2002, the state had the second smallest economy, ahead of only Vermont's. Still, some question the long-term sustainability of an economy hinging on a volatile industry.

"North Dakota has always been a boom and bust state – there hasn't been a time of expansion that wasn't followed by contraction," says Bill Caraher, associate professor of history at the University of North Dakota. "By and large, in terms of the billions and billions of dollars that have flowed into North Dakota's economy, very little has gone into producing the kinds of things that are sustainable long-term economic engines.''

In the state's bid for economic diversification, Northrop Grumman, John Deere and Bobcat are among the manufacturers that have added facilities and jobs – Northrop hoping to employ 100 people in Grand Forks. Caterpillar Remanufacturing recently chose between South Korea and North Dakota for a facility, and chose Fargo. And Grand Forks, inundated by the devastating Red River Flood of 1997, has rebounded 20 years later bigger and better, Caraher notes.

The state also boasts of the second largest campus for the software giant Microsoft outside of Washington state – in Fargo.

More than 80,000 jobs were created in North Dakota from 2011 from 2015, the data behind the Best States rankings show. And this state whose population had long hovered at Depression levels saw its populace grow from 674,000 in 2010 to 758,000 in 2016. Among all 50 states small and large, North Dakota ranked No 1 in the Best States ranking of net migration of people into the state. "Last check, we had 12,000 open positions across the state,'' McMerty says. "We're at a place where we really need that out-of-state population to come in."

The state's unemployment rate ranked No. 3 among all states in the Best States analysis, and running at 3 percent in December it remained the sixth-lowest and well below the national average.

All of this contributed to North Dakota's high ranking in the opportunity it offers citizens – ranking No. 7 nationally, with among the nation's lowest poverty rates, higher median household incomes and most affordable housing.

The state's oil development also has created its own issues. These include the challenges of housing oilfield workers in what have become known as "man camps." And a planned Dakota Access pipeline has generated strong public protest, particularly among the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe objecting to its construction near its reservation.

The tribe celebrated late last year when the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would seek alternative routes for the $3.7 billion pipeline. Then a new president signed an order directing the Corps to "review and approve" the pipeline "in an expedited manner." Allies of the tribe, including Earthjustice, contend that review already has identified problems with the pipeline, and this may end up in court.

The quality of the state's health care – No. 10 in the rankings – is borne out in some of the measures of public health taken into account in Best States.

This includes low mortality and infant mortality rates, 12th and 14th best respectively. One of the offshoots of this is a figure that's not counted in these rankings but measured by the U.S. Census: The nation's highest ratio of people 100 years old and older – with three centenarians for every 10,000 residents, double the national average.

The governor tells the story of a 100-year-old North Dakotan driver who was stopped running a stop sign on the way to his older sisters' place. "The police officer asked, 'Didn't you see the sign?' The man said, 'Sure I saw the sign. I didn't see you.""

The state's governmental services ranked No. 7 in the Best States assessment.

This included well-balanced state accounts – ranking No. 1 in financial health, No. 3 in its operating ratio of income and expenses, No. 6 in the digitalization of state information and No. 11 in the long-term funding of its pension system.

As a measure of that fiscal responsibility, when the state recently lost a sizable share of projected revenue for a two-year budget cycle amid a slowdown in oil drilling, the governor ordered budget cuts and drew $497 million from reserves to close a $1-billion shortfall in a $14-billion budget. Yet with cuts, come pain.

Assessing the cuts at the University of North Dakota – a system ranking No. 6 nationwide – Caraher notes: "People who keep hoping that the boom-bust economies can be leveraged into sustainable growth, these are the kinds of things that give people pause… Universities are one of the major leaders of innovation."

Yet in a world in which everyone holds a miniature "super-computer'' in their hands in their smart phones, the governor suggests, access to learning transcends the traditional boundaries of school buildings, and this too is a question of technology which the state must explore as it seeks to improve education.

Click here to view the full report.

  

 



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          Back to Rockin' the Bakken: Jobs Returning to America's Oil Patch   
By Fox Business
With oil prices on the mend, and an incoming president who is no enemy to drilling, energy companies in the U.S. are hiring again.

In Williston, the North Dakota town that sits at the epicenter of the American shale boom, hiring activity has picked up in the first weeks of 2017. Shawn Wenko, executive director of Williston Economic Development, said oil companies operating in the oil-rich Bakken Formation are hosting two or three job fairs each week. Four companies are expected to add a combined 300 jobs in the first quarter, partly driven by oilfield services.

The number of active rigs in the U.S. surged by 35 to a total of 694 this week, Baker Hughes (BHI) said in its latest report. The U.S. rig count is now up 57 versus the same day in 2015. Schlumberger (SLB), the world’s largest oilfield services provider, said Friday during its fourth quarter earnings release that business was lifted during a period that saw oil companies drilling more wells.

The turnaround fueled an increase of 3,300 jobs in oil and gas extraction and support services in November, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. It was the first increase since September 2014. Over the previous two years, the industry lost over 155,000 jobs.

The uptick in drilling comes as President Donald Trump takes office. Trump and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, the President’s pick to lead the Energy Department, are proponents of new U.S. drilling. Rep. Ryan Zinke (R-MT), Trump’s pick for secretary of the Interior Department, has pledged to explore an expansion of drilling on federal land.

“America’s incredible energy potential remains untapped. It is a totally self-inflicted wound,” Trump said in a May campaign speech detailing his energy plans.

Citing Trump’s proposals to soften regulations, outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas said the energy sector, specifically oil-rig operators and pipeline builders, will regain its status as one of the hottest industries for new hires in 2017.

As drillers and job seekers flocked to the Bakken Formation, Williston’s population nearly doubled from 2010 to 2015. Officials don’t expect the same type of surge they saw at the height of the boom, but the rebound in oil prices should fuel a “significant” boost in 2017.

“This play really shows some long-term potential for us,” Wenko told FOXBusiness.com, referring to the Bakken. “It’s a good indicator for us, as far as what the industry is doing. They’re investing in the billions and putting up long-term facilities.”

Williston, the country’s fastest-growing small city five years in a row, used the oil slump to catch up on infrastructure projects, including a new $240 million airport under construction.

“One of the big misconceptions is people want to say Williston went bust,” Wenko said. “The slowdown helped us catch our breath.”

The industry is also pouring money into the Permian Basin of Texas. Exxon Mobil (XOM) acquired 250,000 acres of land in the Permian this week, paying up to $6.6 billion to nearly double the company’s footprint in the lucrative shale play.

U.S. oil prices climbed 2.2% to $52.51 a barrel on Friday, well above the sub-$40 prices seen last summer. Prices have continued to recover after OPEC’s deal to coordinate production cuts, a move that further eased concerns over swelling global supplies.

Back to Rockin' the Bakken: Jobs Returning to America's Oil Patch - Fox Business

 

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          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project....
          Ag Business Celebrates Growth   
By KX News
A $1.7 billion, international corporation celebrated an expansion of its Minot facility today.

AGT Foods is a Saskatchewan-based company that employs 2,200 people in 120 countries around the world, supplying food products based on pulse crops such as peas and beans.

The company moved in to Minot in 2011 and began an expansion of the facility located near the Port of North Dakota on Minot's east side.

The second phase of that expansion was dedicated today - with a ribbon cutting and special ceremony.

The president of AGT Foods says the Minot plant employs over 100 people and puts out more than $100 million in food products per year.

(Murad Al-Kaltib, AGT Foods President) "We're proud to be here. Agriculture is a big part of the North Dakota economy and pulse crops - peas and lentils and chick peas - the world is demanding high-protein, high-fiber, non-GMO, and gluten-free ingredients and that's what we're producing at this plant for major food companies all around the globe."

Today's event included a display and sampling of some of AGT's products including some new snacks from Sun Chips.

(Murad Al-Kaltib, AGT Foods President) "So we're showcasing some products here like a new Sun Chips that was launched by Frito Lay that has yellow peas made in this plant as the number one ingredient on the back. So it's very exciting to have international food companies embracing ingredients that are made right here in Minot."

The expansion dedicated today cost $20 million, bringing AGT's investment in its Minot plant to more than $75 million.

Ag Business Celebrates Growth - KX News

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          What Amazon wants from Whole Foods: Data on shopping habits   
NEW YORK (AP) -- Why is Amazon spending nearly $14 billion for Whole Foods ? One reason: People who buy yoga mats and fitness trackers on Amazon might also like grapes, nuts and other healthy items at the organic grocery chain....
          Commerce Announces Americorps Grants   
By ND Commerce
The North Dakota Department of Commerce today announced that North Dakota has received $705,125 in AmeriCorps funding from the Corporation for National and Community Service. The 2016 grants focus on investments in economic opportunity, education, veterans and military families, disaster services and continue a new initiative for governors and mayors. 

Below is a listing of 2016 AmeriCorps grants in North Dakota: 
  • YMCA of Cass and Clay Counties - $351,301 - 64 AmeriCorps members
  • West Fargo Public School District - $189,149 - 41 AmeriCorps members
  • YouthWorks – Bismarck & Fargo - $76,846 - 11 AmeriCorps members
  • Cooperstown Community Activities Association - $37,444 - 10 AmeriCorps Members
  • South East Education Cooperative - Fargo - $36,592 - 11 AmeriCorps members
  • Housing Authority of the City of Grand Forks - $13,793 - 4 AmeriCorps members 
“Congratulations to these outstanding organizations and thanks to all those who serve their communities through AmeriCorps,” North Dakota AmeriCorps Program administrator Ryan Volk said. “In North Dakota, more than 1,800 AmeriCorps members have served 2 million hours and earned more than $4,510,000 in education scholarships.” 

Since 1994, 980,000 AmeriCorps members have given more than 1.3 billion hours of service to their country, earning more than $3 billion in education scholarships. Later this year, the one millionth AmeriCorps member will take the AmeriCorps pledge, committing to "get things done" for America.  

The North Dakota Department of Commerce works to improve the quality of life for North Dakota citizens by leading efforts to attract, retain and expand wealth. Commerce serves businesses and communities statewide through committed people and partners who offer valuable programs and dynamic services. 

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          New Federal Regulations for Small Drones Receive Positive Feedback from North Dakota Industry Members   
By Grand Forks Herald
The Federal Aviation Administration debuted a set of long-awaited regulations governing the use of unmanned aircraft Tuesday that were met with fanfare from local and national members of the industry.

The rules are targeted at small unmanned aircraft, also known as drones, used for commercial and public applications and contain requirements for their operation and qualifications for their pilots.

David Dvorak, CEO of Field of View in Grand Forks, has been waiting years for the FAA to finalize regulations for unmanned aircraft.

"The level of restriction up until this point has been pretty horrendous so this seems like a walk in the park compared to what we have been working under," he said of the new requirements.

The rules, formally known as Part 107 of the Federal Aviation Regulations, will take effect in late August, and will apply to drones weighing less than 55 pounds.

These regulations pave the way for commercial operations utilizing unmanned aircraft, which currently are prohibited unless an exemption is obtained from the FAA. The agency had granted more than 5,000 exemptions prior to the unveiling of Part 107 — about 20 of which have gone to North Dakota-based companies.

Industry experts say the rules' release spells good news for the economy, with estimates predicting more than 100,000 jobs could be created and $82 billion generated over the next 10 years as a result.

Drone operations by public agencies such as sheriff and police departments also are included in the new regulations. Previously, these groups needed to acquire a certificate of authorization that spelled out conditions for flight.

"We are part of a new era in aviation, and the potential for unmanned aircraft will make it safer and easier to do certain jobs, gather information and deploy disaster relief," U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said in a statement Tuesday.

Requirements

The first draft of the rules for small unmanned aircraft was published last year, but regulations in general have been a long-awaited by those in the industry.

In 2012, the FAA received a congressional mandate to integrate UAS technology into national airspace by September 2015. The deadline came and went with no rules finalized, leaving the industry to await this week's release.

Dvorak and others predict the news will inspire more confidence in the technology and produce an uptick in economic activity as businesses prepare for the rule to become active.

"As a company that provides software and hardware for drone operators, I'd imagine this release will give a lot more people confidence to start investing in equipment, training and software in the next 60 days," Dvorak said.

Come August, drone pilots can fly at an altitude of 400 feet or less, cannot fly directly over people not involved in a flight operation and must maintain a safe distance from airports unless permission is received from the facilities in Class B,C, D and E airspace.

Part 107 prohibits flying unmanned aircraft in Class A airspace, which spans from 18,000 to 60,000 above sea level. Flights are allowed in Class G airspace, which is considered uncontrolled airspace, without permission from air traffic control.

Drone pilots must be certified and at least 16 years old unless supervised by someone holding a remote pilot certificate.

The certificate would be obtained by passing an initial aeronautical knowledge test at a FAA-approved knowledge testing center or through other means if a person has an existing non-student Part 61 pilot certificate. Background checks on all remote pilot applications would be conducted by the Transportation Security Administration prior to issuance of a certificate.

Other requirements include always operating a drone within line of sight, flying during the day, not exceeding a groundspeed of 100 mph and avoiding reckless operations.

Missing pieces

Though Part 107 lays groundwork for the continued growth of unmanned industry, some found there still are important provisions missing from it.

"While the approved regulations are a step in the right direction for the drone industry, we still have a long way to go, specifically when it comes to long-distance or beyond-visual-line-of-sight drones," Tero Heinonen, CEO of Sharper Shape, said in a statement.

Heinonen, whose company operates out of Palo Alto, Calif., and Grand Forks, and others see beyond-line-of-sight as crucial to the continued development of drone technology.

Those wishing to conduct operations beyond line of sight or at night need to receive a waiver from the FAA, but it's likely that will be a temporary fix much like the commercial exemption process.

"With this new rule, we are taking a careful and deliberate approach that balances the need to deploy this new technology with the FAA's mission to protect public safety," FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said in a statement. "We're already working on additional rules that will expand the range of operations."

Overall, reaction to the rule's release has been favorable with advocacy groups such as the Association of Unmanned Vehicle Systems International and the Academy for Model Aeronautics commending the FAA in allowing the industry to continue advancing.

Easier access to the industry does spell more competition for those already established within it.

"The challenge isn't over, it's really just beginning," Dvorak said. "Now everyone is kind of on an equal playing field. There have been companies that have come and gone over the years here, but now everyone has the opportunity to generate income from day one.

"It'll be interesting to see how the market handles that."

New Federal Regulations for Small Drones Receive Positive Feedback from North Dakota Industry Members - Grand Forks Herald

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          Diverse Economy Keeping State Healthy, Anderson says: State Commerce Commissioner says ND Remains in Good Shape Despite Budget Shortfall   
By The Jamestown Sun
North Dakota’s economy is more diverse than what some think and that is why it is still strong despite a $2 billion hit to the state economy, according to Alan Anderson, commissioner of the North Dakota Department of Commerce.

That kind of drop would really hurt the $18 billion North Dakota economy in 2000, and it still hurt in 2015, but the difference now is the state has a $55 billion economy, Anderson said in his keynote address Wednesday at the annual meeting of the Jamestown/Stutsman Development Corp.

“It is going to be pain for the state budget but overall North Dakota is extremely healthy from an economic standpoint,” Anderson said, adding that legislators and agencies will continue to face pressure to cut costs.

A diversified economy means the state must continue providing research dollars to universities and industry partners while also ensuring dollars for other growth and entrepreneurism, he said.

The Spiritwood Energy Park Association’s industrial park at Spiritwood is an example of best practices, Anderson said. It provides water, electricity, natural gas, rail and truck transportation and the essentials for industry at one spot. The new Jamestown Regional Medical Center facility, the Menards and economic parks are other signs of good innovation, he said.

“My hat is off to all of you,” Anderson said. “You’re doing a great job on that.”

Another key to the strong economy is the North Dakota workforce, which has gone from a labor exporter in 2000 to leading the nation in low unemployment and worker immigration for six years, he said. Despite three years of low ag prices and a 40 percent drop in oil, there are 15,000 job openings in North Dakota, he said.

“It’s not due to one particular industry like some would have you believe,” he said. “It’s been that all of our industries have done well over that time frame.”

To get people to come to North Dakota employment and opportunities are needed, he said. North Dakota has grown in population by over 100,000 people in the last 15 years and the average age is 35, the fourth-youngest population in the country. That happened by creating a business-friendly environment, supporting research and connecting universities with industry, entrepreneurship and finding export markets outside of the state and country, he said.

Anderson listed some of the major companies in North Dakota that are growing and currently list around 15,240 job openings. That is nearly twice the number of the 2.9 percent unemployment rate in North Dakota, he said.

For example, Appareo Systems started with two people and now has an average growth rate of 45 percent with close to 200 employees, he said. The North Dakota company Botink just received a $3 million investment to provide software support to the drone industry.

Northrop just made a $10 million investment in Grand Forks, he said. General Atomics has 25 high-income job openings

Agriculture has had three years of low commodity prices but North Dakota overall is still on a good trajectory, he said. The downside is labor as technology allows for higher productivity with fewer people involved in the process, but the upswing is value-added ag with corporations like Cavendish Farms helping to minimize the impact of low commodity prices, he said.

Anderson said the cost to break even in oil is around $45 a barrel when it used to be $70. This is due to efficiency and technology, he said. Bakken shale is doing better than other shale fields around the country, he said. Drilling will remain idle with $40 per barrel prices, he said, and at $50 per barrel it will stimulate more wells coming online and at $60 there will be new drilling.

“The outlook is good there and as that price continues to go up they will pick up quicker than they would have in the past,” he said.

Connie Ova, CEO of JSDC, Jamestown Mayor Katie Andersen and Mark Klose, chairman of the Stutsman County Commission, presented H&H Holdings of Jamestown with the Growing Jamestown Award. Jim Grueneich, general manager, and Dean Hafner, owner, were present to accept.

H&H received a $43,000 Flex PACE Interest buy down to help purchase a building, according to the JSDC annual report. H&H continues to operate at its current rate and has created seven full- time jobs.

Diverse Economy Keeping State Healthy, Anderson says: State Commerce Commissioner says ND Remains in God Shape Despite Budget Shortfall - The Jamestown Sun 

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          Travel and Tourism Week Highlights State's Third-Largest Industry    
By ND Commerce Tourism Division
Nationally, the travel industry contributes $2.1 trillion to the U.S. economy, and one in every nine American jobs depends on the industry. The impact of this is significant right here in North Dakota with 24 million visitors spending $3.6 billion across the state.
 
In recognition of the travel industry’s significant contributions to our state, Gov. Jack Dalrymple has declared May 1-7 “North Dakota Travel and Tourism Week.”
 
North Dakota Travel and Tourism Week is held in conjunction with the U.S. Travel Association’s National Travel and Tourism Week, an annual salute to the tourism and travel industry that recognizes the industry’s benefits and importance to communities and Americans.
 
“Tourism is an integral contributor to our state’s economic growth, generating revenue for hundreds of tourism-based businesses,” Dalrymple said. “I am pleased to declare North Dakota Travel and Tourism Week to honor the outstanding contributions the industry continues to make statewide, and look forward to welcoming millions of new and returning visitors each year to North Dakota.”
 
North Dakota’s travel industry continues to be a strong and stable contributor in our state’s economy, North Dakota Tourism Division Director Sara Otte Coleman said. “Travel spending impacts all 53 counties because of the variety of experiences offered. From the Badlands and parks, to historic sites and urban amenities, there are enticing reasons to travel in and around every corner of North Dakota.”
 
The Impact of Travel and Tourism in North Dakota:
  • Tourism is North Dakota’s 3rd largest industry and important to our diversified economy
  • 24 million people visited North Dakota in 2013. (IHS)
  • North Dakota travel generated $307 million in taxes, or the equivalent of $1,011 per household. (IHS)
  • Visitor spending totaled $3.6 billion in 2013. The majority of expenditures, 55 percent, were by visitors from other U.S. states. International travelers made up 10 percent of the total, and in-state residents traveling to other parts of North Dakota accounted for 44 percent of spending. (IHS)
  • In 2014, every $1 invested in tourism advertising for North Dakota resulted in $94 in visitor spending. (Longwoods)
  • Canadian travelers are important to North Dakota Tourism. Canadians spent more than $266 million here in 2012. (Statistics Canada)
  • The top five U.S. states requesting visitor information are Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio.
  • The top six overseas markets requesting visitor information are UK, Germany, Italy, Australia/New Zealand, Nordic region and France.
  • Tourism is North Dakota’s fifth-largest employer supporting 26,600 jobs. (IHS)
  • Approximately $787 million in wages and salaries are generated through North Dakota tourism. (IHS)
 
Travel is one of America’s largest industries
Source: U.S. Travel Association
  • Direct spending by resident and international travelers in the U.S. averaged $2.6 billion a day, $108.1 million an hour, $1.8 million a minute and $30,033 a second.
  • Travel generates $2.1 trillion for the U.S. economy.
  • Direct travel spending in the U.S. totaled $947.1 billion by domestic and international travelers in 2015.
  • One in every 9 American jobs depends on travel.
  • Each U.S. household would pay $1,187 MORE in taxes without the tax revenue generated by the travel industry.

Get connected to great information about vacationing in North Dakota by becoming a fan of Travel North Dakota at www.facebook.com/TravelND or following North Dakota Tourism on Twitter at twitter.com/NorthDakota or Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/northdakotalegendary.
 
To see a calendar of events and learn about all there is to experience in North Dakota, request a copy of the North Dakota Travel Guide by calling 800-435-5663 or NDtourism.com
 

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          Developing Dakota: State Takes Roll in Promoting Economic Growth   
By Minot Daily News
Distracted briefly by an oil boom, North Dakota's economic development focus is back on track.

The emphasis on diversification and value-added industry that has been primary since the oil bust and agricultural downturn of the 1980s hasn't lost relevance, according to Bank of North Dakota President Eric Hardmeyer.

"But when you have a boom like we had, that tends to take a lot of energy and oxygen," he said. With the oil industry slowdown, the Bank of North Dakota is regrouping and examining how to update its economic development programs to accomplish its diversification mission.

"North Dakota had been working its way down that path pretty well. Because of that, we are in a better place than we were in the '80s and '90s certainly," Hardmeyer said. "We have a much more diversified economy today."

He sees more value-added projects developing on both the agriculture and energy side in the future. In terms of state support programs, restructuring may have to occur to deal with the new paradigm of today's economy, he said.

Hardmeyer said bank officials are re-examining existing programs and visiting with community and economic development leaders around the state "to really understand the issues that they are dealing with and to proactively deal with them by coming back with maybe a slate of programs designed to take on the new economy."

Fact Box

Future metropolitan area?

Minot's growth trend has the city on course to achieve metropolitan status within the next four years, according to North Dakota's census director.

Kevin Iverson, who manages census data in the North Dakota Commerce Department, said Minot could achieve the designation of a metropolitan statistical area sometime between 2017 and 2020. Minot is designated as part of a micropolitan area that includes Ward, Renville and McHenry counties. For a micropolitan area to become a metropolitan area, there must be a core city with a population of 50,000.

The last estimate from the U.S. Census Bureau showed Minot with a population of 47,997 as of July 2014. Estimates also show Minot's micropolitan area grew by 1,855 residents from July 2014 to July 2015 to 79,814. The 2015 population estimate for the city of Minot hasn't yet been released.

One of the advantages of a metropolitan designation is the amount of statistical data that becomes available for planning and other uses. Fargo, Bismarck and Grand Forks are metropolitan areas.

Iverson also noted that North Dakota's economy of the past several years has drawn younger people to the state and encouraged more youth to stay, causing the average age in the state to drop by more than two years to just under 35 years in 2014. That has meant more young families, a demand for child care and crowded schools, especially at the younger grades.

Even with the slowdown in oil activity and tougher times in agriculture, estimates are that North Dakota gained about 17,000 people through natural increase and in-migration in 2015.

The Commerce Department reported the slowdown in oil activity and drop in agricultural commodity prices contributed to a $2 billion hit to North Dakota's Gross Domestic Product between 2014 and 2015. Officials say that's a small decline in what has been a $55 billion economy. In comparison, North Dakota's GDP in 2005 was about $25 billion.

"Now is one of those reflection points, where you really take a look at what you have and say, 'Are we meeting all the needs? What does it look like now? What should we have in place?'" Hardmeyer said.

"We are out there right now really trying to get the lay of the land," he added. "We have been directed by the Industrial Commission to go out there and begin that work, so we have. We have started that work with the idea we are out in front of this. If we need new programs, new money, we at least have an idea of how to go forward with a legislative agenda."

A program that has been a mainstay since the 1990s has been PACE, which is geared value-added and manufacturing jobs. The state followed up with Flex PACE to provide assistance beyond just manufacturers and job creation and respond more to what communities believe are essential services. The state also has beginning entrepreneur and venture capital programs that have been successful.

Each of the state's various business assistance programs have had an impact, and that's especially true of those that have been around a while, such as the North Dakota Development Fund, said Paul Lucy, director of economic development in the North Dakota Commerce Department.

"It has been kind of a stalwart program," he said of the Development Fund. "The Development Fund is a gap financing program.

As companies or projects are looking for financing, many times there's a variety of different reasons you may not be able to get all the financing with a typical commercial lender. The Development Fund can come into those projects and fill a gap."

Tax incentives and programs that target investors can't be overlooked, he added.

"Those programs that motivate the private sector to invest in those entrepreneur companies are programs that we might not see immediate results in terms of significant impact, but I truly believe that long-term for the state of North Dakota, those are some of the critical programs that we really need to have in the state," Lucy said.

Tax credits are another way the state supports businesses, including breaks on sales tax for equipment purchases and for increasing manufacturing automation to stay competitive. Expanding opportunities and creating demand for more skilled labor through automation results in higher wages, Lucy said.

North Dakota already has risen from 38th among states in per capita income to ninth in 2015, down somewhat from sixth place in 2014, according to the Commerce Department. The state's 5.1 percent income growth from 2007-2015 led all states by far.

Job training programs, another form of state assistance, have been used extensively by businesses to find employees for those more skilled, better-paying jobs.

"Any business that comes into the state, what's the biggest question they ask? Can we get the workforce? We have more people exiting the workforce than we have coming into it in the state," said Kevin Iverson, state census director.

North Dakota has a large number of baby boomers and a correspondingly small percentage of youth in their teens to replace boomers when they retire. During the time those teens were born, North Dakota was experiencing an out-migration of the young people who were starting families. That will require an in-migration of workers, beginning in about 2020 to 2022 to cover that gap, Iverson said.

Lucy said North Dakota's core industries, particularly in energy and agriculture, are so important that the state will be relying on them for decades, if not centuries. At the same time, diversification helps survive down times, and North Dakota has seen new ideas and companies coming forward that would not have been dreamed about 25 or 35 years ago, he said.

It is in tough times that the state sees more innovation and value-added projects, he said.

"If North Dakota wants to continue to grow, have a strong economy, the key to that success will all hinge on our ability to continue to diversify," he said. "There are a number of new things happening across the state. It's really an exciting time for North Dakota."

Hardmeyer agrees these post-boom years can be exciting.

"This has been painful in a lot of ways, but I think we are really set up for a really bright future," he said. "With the infrastructure in place, the fact that we know how to get the oil and all the gathering systems, I think we are in a really good place now to move forward with new initiatives."

Previously reported as, "Developing Dakota: State Takes Roll in Promoting Economic Growth - Minot Daily News".
 

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          Dalrymple Highlights State's Economic Strength, Opportunities   
By ND Governor's Office
Gov. Jack Dalrymple kicked off the first annual Demographics Conference in Bismarck today by highlighting North Dakota’s economic strength and how the state’s diversified economy is helping to weather fluctuations in the energy and agriculture industries.
 
The focus of the conference was to help participants understand important socio-economic and demographic trends in North Dakota and how those trends impact citizens, businesses and communities. The inaugural event was a collaborative effort between the North Dakota Department of Commerce, the North Dakota Compass at North Dakota State University and the University of North Dakota Department of Economics, and was held at the
National Energy Center of Excellence on the Bismarck State College campus.
 
“For more than a decade, we have worked hard and strategically to diversify our economy and expand our target industries and those efforts have produced real results with increased economic production, job growth and rising wages,” said Dalrymple. “Despite a downturn in commodity prices impacting the state’s two leading industries, our diversified economic base is strong and growing, with many exciting advancements occurring in the technology, manufacturing and aviation sectors. Our economy is strong and North Dakota continues to be a great place to do business.”
 
During his remarks, Dalrymple stated that North Dakota’s continued economic growth stems from nearly every business sector across the state and that no single industry tells the whole story of North Dakota’s progress. He highlighted the state’s economic strength relative to production growth, unemployment, job openings and per capita personal income.
 
  • The state’s Gross Domestic Product through 3rd quarter 2015 is still performing well above the 2012-2013 levels.
  • North Dakota continues to have one of the lowest unemployment rates in the nation at just 2.9 percent for February 2016.
  • As of March 2016, North Dakota has more than 15,000 job openings across the state.
  • North Dakota has one of the fastest growing populations in the nation. Up until 2008, North Dakota was losing population. In 2013 alone, more than 18,000 new residents moved to the state. Between 2010 and 2014, North Dakota’s overall population increased 9.9 percent.
  • North Dakota continues to be one of only a few states whose populations are getting younger, with 9.6 percent of residents between the age of 20 and 24 compared to 7.1 percent nationally.
  • Since the fourth quarter of 2007, North Dakota’s personal income has led the nation in growth at an annual rate of 5.1 percent. In 2015, even with the economic slowdown, the state still ranked in the top 10 for per capita personal income at number 9 in the nation. 
The Governor also highlighted some of the advancements and opportunities emerging from North Dakota’s target industries and cited examples of businesses throughout the state that are reporting job and revenue growth.
 
  • North Dakota is well positioned in the energy industry as Bakken Shale is shown as the best cost value oil in the U.S. oil plays. Efficiencies in the industry are lowering the break-even point for companies to make a profit.
  • The state’s technology-based business sector is growing and diversifying, and leading the nation in innovative advances. The state’s technology industry payroll has grown to more than $1 billion a year, providing an average wage of $79,500. Companies like Microsoft and Amazon have long called North Dakota home. They, together with other high-tech companies like NISC, Intelligent Insites and Appareo, have shown growth in the state and continue to expand.
  • North Dakota is home to a growing cluster of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) research, business and military interests. Partnerships among private businesses, universities and state government strengthen North Dakota’s position as a leader in UAS. The state is one of six Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) UAS test sites conducting research to determine how to best integrate UAS into the national airspace. The FAA certified the Northern Plains UAS Test Site as the first site ready for operations in April 2014. Northrop Grumman and General Atomics — world leaders in aviation and aerospace — are investing millions in North Dakota.
  • Manufacturers in North Dakota account for 5.8 percent of the total output in the state and employ 5.6 percent of the workforce. Total output from manufacturing was $3.25 billion in 2014. In addition, there were 25,900 manufacturing employees in North Dakota in 2015, with an average annual compensation of $55,754.


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          A Silicon Valley for Drones, in North Dakota   
By The New York Times
“California and New York want what we’ve got,” said Shawn Muehler, a 30-year-old Fargo resident, gazing at a horizon of empty fields, silos, windbreak trees and hardly any people. A winged craft traces the air, mapping a field with pinpoint accuracy for his start-up, a drone software company called Botlink. “They like drones, but they’ve got a steep learning curve ahead.”

For years, entrepreneurs have come here to farm and to drill for oil and natural gas. Now a new, tech-savvy generation is grabbing a piece of the growing market for drone technology and officials want to help them do it here, where there is plenty of open space and — unlike in other sparsely populated states — lots of expertise already in place.

Silicon Valley has the big money and know-how, Mr. Muehler and others say, but North Dakota can take unmanned aerial vehicles, as the officials prefer to call drones, from a fast-growing hobby to an industry. And just as Silicon Valley got its start with military contracts, entrepreneurs and cooperative universities, they believe they can do the same with drones.

“The potential up here is tremendous,” said Jack Dalrymple, the state’s governor. “It’s not about supporting a company or two; it’s creating the leading edge of an industry.”

North Dakota has spent about $34 million fostering the state’s unmanned aerial vehicle business, most notably with a civilian industrial park for drones near Grand Forks Air Force Base. The base, a former Cold War installation, now flies nothing but robot aircraft for the United States military and Customs and Border Protection.

Right now, private sector drones are where personal computers were in the 1970s: a hobbyist technology waiting to become mainstream. The technology research firm Gartner says that, barring regulatory hurdles, the United States drone business could be worth $7 billion in a decade.

Companies are moving fast. Last month, Amazon released a video showing its planned delivery drone, and companies like Google and Facebook are working on big drone projects. DJI, a Chinese company that is the world’s largest maker of small drones, was funded last spring at a valuation of $10 billion.

Small drones may bedevil cities with privacy concerns, even landing on the White House lawn, but rural states with farming, oil and rail lines see many practical reasons to put robots in the sky. Infrared imaging can judge crop health. Cameras can spot leaks and cracks in pipelines. Smaller copters can inspect windmill blades. Livestock can be located easily.

Judging from Mr. Muehler’s proving grounds, if the occasional experimental craft crashes, it is unlikely to hit much beyond dirt. And with money, expertise and need here, people will keep trying.

Grand Forks Air Force Base, 80 miles north of Fargo, has been an all-drone base since 2013. Big Global Hawk unmanned aerial vehicles, made by Northrop Grumman, fly reconnaissance missions from the Yukon to Venezuela from there. 

In a smaller brick building in Fargo, Mr. Muehler was once part of a North Dakota Air National Guard unit that flies missions over the Mideast and Afghanistan.

Customs and Border Protection uses the Grand Forks field to patrol from Seattle to the Great Lakes with slightly smaller Predator drones. Sometimes those pilots take over from their Customs counterparts in Texas, patrolling the Rio Grande from screens 80 miles south of the Canadian border.

Where B-52 bombers stood ready with nuclear bombs in the Cold War, the country’s first commercial unmanned aerial vehicle industrial park is under construction. Northrop Grumman and General Atomics, the Predator maker, are taking space to train pilots for international sales of the craft.

Other businessmen are looking at modifying their craft for things like high-altitude surveillance of railroad tracks and pipelines. Involta, an Iowa-based operator of data centers that has already created a windmill inspection business in Grand Forks, is looking at building facilities specialized in collecting aerial information.

A company called Field of View, near the planned site of the industrial park, makes aerial sensing equipment. An outfit called the Unmanned Applications Institute is working with providers away from North Dakota on things like local drone manufacture and warehousing.

Nearby, the University of North Dakota, which already trains many of the nation’s commercial pilots and the air traffic controllers of some 18 countries, has 200 students learning to fly drones in a four-year program that started in 2009; 61 students have graduated from it. North Dakota State University, in Fargo, has also started teaching drone courses.

Besides military contracts and educational talent, North Dakota also has high-tech talent. In 1999, Amazon purchased an online seller of tools and home improvement gear in Grand Forks, and the company now develops customer service software there. In 2001, Microsoft paid $1.1 billion for Great Plains Software of Fargo, and it now has an office there.

The area has thousands of software engineers and not a few millionaires itching to get into the next big thing.

“Every top engineer in all of Fargo works for Botlink,” Mr. Muehler boasted. “We have the top 10 engineers in town.”

Mr. Muehler, who was educated as a pilot at North Dakota State, started on what became Botlink while flying missions from the brick building in Fargo. Governor Dalrymple refers to the military site as “once a well-kept-secret facility,” since its purpose has become common knowledge in the city of about 115,000 people.

One night in early 2014, Mr. Muehler saw a report on Fox News about a hobbyist drone that flew into the airspace at La Guardia Airport in New York. That’s when he hit upon the idea for his business.

“I figured there has to be some kind of software that can give awareness, let a drone know about things like boundaries and weather,” he said.

Alex Kube, a high school friend who was working at the same facility, started making the software. Seven months later, he spoke at a meeting of local entrepreneurs and collected $500,000 in angel funding from local investors. Botlink was formed several months later when Mr. Muehler met Terri Zimmerman, a former chief financial officer at Great Plains who grew up on a farm near the Canadian border.

“We want to be the Microsoft of the industry,” said Ms. Zimmerman, who is now Botlink’s chief executive, and runs another company, Packet Digital, involved in low-power semiconductors used for, among other things, military drones.

So far, the company has raised $3 million more from private investors. “That’s like $14 million in Silicon Valley,” Ms. Zimmerman said.

A Silicon Valley for Drones, in North Dakota - The New York Times

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          Inside Fargo, America's Most Undervalued Tech Hub   
By Fortune
Editor's Note: Congratulations to the many Fargo-area businesses mentioned in this article. Many of them have participate in ND Commerce programs such as Innovate ND, Centers of Excellence and Centers of Research Excellence, Research ND and the North Dakota Development Fund.

It gets 50 inches of snow a year and is so cold that its bikeshare moves inside for the winter. But its homegrown tech community is on fire.

The morning of Nov. 12, 2014 was well below freezing in Fargo, the largest city in North Dakota. By the time Shawn Muehler took the stage before an audience of 150, the theater, located just a few blocks west of the Red River, had warmed up. Entrepreneurs, students, professors and business leaders shuffled down the aisles with free cups of coffee. For the audience, it was time for Fargo’s 1 Million Cups, a robust startup community-building initiative from the Kaufman Foundation that’s a kind of church for entrepreneurs. For Muehler, it was time to talk about drones.

Standing on stage with one of his drones, Muehler—a Fargo native, Air Force officer, and seasoned pilot—had six minutes to present his business idea, the result of several months of white-board calculating, late-night brainstorming, and endless code tinkering. He described the collision risks found in an airspace that is increasingly crowded with aircraft and drones. The software that he and his small team of pilots, developers, and engineers wanted to build, he explained, would create a safety net for drone pilots, enabling them to track their unmanned vehicles in real time using existing cellular networks.

Muehler’s presentation was followed by vigorous applause and a round of questions. As is tradition at 1 Million Cups, the entrepreneur was asked one final query: “How can we as a community help you succeed?” And so he answered. Within five days, Muehler tells Fortune, he had five funding opportunities from people in the community. The ensuing $500,000 seed investment allowed him to double his workforce and move to a larger office downtown.

Last spring the company, now called Botlink, launched the beta version of its drone-tracking application, which it says is the world’s first commercially available drone safety and control platform. In June, Botlink announced a joint venture with Fargo’s power management company, Packet Digital, to raise $15 million on the same day that it co-hosted Fargo’s inaugural Drone Focus Conference. By this fall, the company had launched its first product: a piece of data-processing hardware that’s compatible with every drone on the market.

When I visited the Botlink office in September, the staff had just returned from a drone conference in Las Vegas where they’d run out of brochures the first day and flummoxed some West Coast startups who didn’t realize they had competitors in Fargo. Half-empty containers of drones now littered the floor around the reception desk, making the office look like the home of a robot family unpacking from a long trip. In the workshop down the hall, a plane with a 14-foot wingspan sat on a desk, and Muehler, wearing a Batman t-shirt, was one of the first to tell me what makes Fargo special.

Well before I arrived in Fargo, I’d heard about Silicon Prairie—the Heartland’s version of Silicon Valley—with noteworthy startup activity in larger cities like Omaha, Des Moines, and Kansas City. I knew Fargo was on the eastern border of the state, far from the oil activity in the Bakken region. I’d read that it’s home to the country’s third-largest Microsoft  MSFT 0.65% campus and nearly 30,000 college students. The average age of Fargo residents is 31. Its unemployment rate is among the lowest in the nation. I had already grasped enough about this city of 105,000 to easily dismiss the Siberia-esque picture painted in the 1996 Coen brothers film of the same name. I envisioned a burst of Technicolor popping from a vast expanse of plains.

The tech scene that I visited in September was markedly different from the one I had first heard about in 2013. Two years ago Emerging Prairie, a startup news and events organization, was beginning to establish itself; today it co-organizes wildly popular events such as 1 Million Cups, TEDxFargo, and a monthly gathering called Startup Drinks. Thanks to local startup Myriad Mobile, which spun out of a student-run incubator, Fargo has begun hosting the annual Midwest Mobile Summit. A nonprofit has started offering coding classes for women. Meetups have launched for hackers, gamers, developers, geeks, and even bitcoin enthusiasts.

Fargo companies are also beginning to appear in the national spotlight. Intelligent InSites, which provides tracking real-time operational intelligence for the healthcare industry, is experiencing explosive growth. So is Appareo Systems, a leader in electronic and computer products for the aerospace and defense industries. A handful of gaming companies have surfaced in the area; one is developing a virtual reality horror game and another is building a woodland survival adventure game called On My Ownfor Xbox One. A team from North Dakota State University has engineered an affordable, 3D-printed prosthetic arm. Two locals have started a funeral webcasting service. Another startup has developed an autonomous tractor.

With all of this activity, how does a place like Fargo end up as one of the most undervalued, overlooked tech communities in the United States? That’s why I wanted to meet Greg Tehven, the executive director and co-founder of Emerging Prairie and affectionately known as Fargo’s ambassador, when I visited the city this fall. On a warm Sunday afternoon, I found him at a community lunch for new Americans, set up for several hundred on a basketball court on the west side of town. Characteristic of the region, the wind blew like it was trying to prove something; strong guests sent naan cartwheeling across curry vegetables and off paper plates. Young Bhutanese girls danced barefoot on the asphalt in sequined dresses the color of Gerber daisies.

Tehven is a soft-spoken, dyed-in-the-wool millennial, a fifth-generation Fargoian who grew up on a farm and came of age during the Buffalo Commons era, when people debated a proposal to let buffalo take over the Great Plains. Tehven left Fargo for college, wandered around, felt unfulfilled and returned, determined to build the type of community he wanted to call home. Today, he travels around the country speaking about community-building and teaches social entrepreneurship in India.

“Barriers are being eliminated to contribute to the community here,” he told me. “People who have moved away know they can come back here and do things quickly.” He talked about a radically inclusive culture that has an extraordinary speed of trust. In economic terms, what’s happening in Fargo is that a magnetic downtown is attracting and retaining talent. But Tehven contends that it’s really about love.

“It’s about increasing the amount of love in our community,” he said, noting that it’s hard to be successful on your own. “There’s a co-dependence here.” He said people need each other, whether it’s for harvesting crops or recovering from a flood. If emotional support is absent, innovation will falter.

The next morning, I met Tehven at Prairie Den, a new coworking space in the center of town, above a Chinese restaurant called King House Buffet. Until this summer, it was run by Minneapolis-based CoCo, but they didn’t last a year, Tehven said, because they didn’t embrace the philosophy of giving before getting. Shortly after they left, the space was resurrected as the Den, a funky, art-filled workspace that’s home to Emerging Prairie and a couple start-ups. Hearing the story of this rebirth made me think of the new growth that quickly emerges in forests after controlled burns.

One of the reasons Emerging Prairie was created was to act as a publicity machine for locals who think it’s uncouth to celebrate one’s own achievements. The organization, which is in the process of becoming a nonprofit, now has a staff of four, including a writer, Marisa Jackels, who produces daily stories about the startup scene. She never runs out of content. Tehven has each new staff member read Startup Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Your City by Foundry Group co-founder Brad Feld.

If Fargo had to limit itself to a single story, it would be that of Great Plains Software, a fledgling startup built by North Dakotan Doug Burgum over nearly two decades and acquired by Microsoft in 2001 for $1.1 billion. Today, Microsoft is located on the south side of town and has grown to four buildings with more than 1,500 employees—the company’s third-largest campus in North America.

Burgum went on to found Kilbourne Group, a downtown redevelopment company, and co-found Arthur Ventures, a venture capital group that’s investing in software companies out of a $45 million fund raised in 2013. He’s as close to a godfather as the humble Fargo community will allow. Incidentally, it wasn’t until well after a conversation with a community leader named Joe—who started a downtown farmer’s market, worked on Uber-friendly legislation and is now building a giant mobile sauna—that I found out he was Burgum’s son.

Burgum said Great Plains employees focused on service and had a lot of humility and gratitude; he sees that today in the dozens of startups that employ Great Plains alumni. Like others, he told me that the region’s land and history play a role in today’s technology growth.

“Every farmer and rancher is an entrepreneur and tinkerer and inventor,” he said, “and there’s some of that DNA here. You wouldn’t have ended up here if you weren’t a risk-taker—moving your family from Sweden to a new land with no electricity and very little infrastructure.”

Shane Waslaski, president and CEO of Intelligent InSites, also grew up in the state and said the strong tech community in Fargo can be attributed to a pioneering spirit and an “altruistic desire to nourish each other.” Tenaciousness and perseverance are rooted in the heritage, he said.

From Prairie Den, Tehven and I walked around downtown, popping into offices and meetings unannounced and intercepting folks on Broadway and Roberts Street—as was his plan. I was reminded of the familiarity and ease with which students can have impromptu and rich conversations while walking across a college quad. Time and again, talking to Muehler and other entrepreneurs, I heard stories that made it easy to root for the underdog that is Fargo. I found a level of enthusiasm typically reserved for young political candidates offering hope and promising change. More than once, I saw someone get choked up talking about the place they call home.

We ran into Drew Spooner, a baby-faced serial entrepreneur who started the Hammock Initiative and speaks deadpan about the health benefits of swaying. He now has sponsors and a national following. Then we ran into the woman behind Unglued, a shop selling locally made crafts; and one of the brewers behind Fargo Brewing Company, which makes Wood Chipper India Pale Ale. Much of the day, Tehven, wearing jeans and flannel, walked around with a cup of coffee in his hand. He told me there’s a sense in Fargo that if you talk about something enough, it will become real—whether it’s a hammocking craze or a spontaneous tailgate party.

Among the challenges in a town with so much startup activity is making sure the entrepreneurs have enough support to get over the first-generation hump and maintain momentum even when the initial spotlight fades.

“In cities like San Francisco, Boston, New York, there’s a lot of experience and expertise,” said Miguel Danielson, another Emerging Prairie co-founder. “That’s great for entrepreneurs because it’s scary to do alone. So a lot of what we do at Emerging Prairie is try to bring these folks together.” He lovingly describes Fargo—remote, hundreds of miles from Minneapolis and Winnipeg—as a Gilligan’s Island of sorts. “You’re stuck with the folks you’ve got in the immediate vicinity, so you better be nice to them,” he said, adding that in a small place, he feels especially blessed when he finds others with common interests.

Danielson grew up in Fargo and left for college and Harvard Law School. If it weren’t for the startup culture—which is helping Midwestern communities fight brain drain–he may never have returned. After practicing in Cambridge for several years, he opened Danielson Legal in Fargo, specializing in technology law, and he created Fargo Startup House, where entrepreneurs can live for free.

In the next five years, Danielson predicts a more robust Fargo tech scene, with a few wild successes and some wild failures. When the city sees its first exit success story of this new era—someone who starts with nothing and ends up with hundreds of millions of dollars—he said that will be “one that looms in the minds of people forever.”

At the end of my day in Fargo, I returned to Prairie Den. Spooner was setting up hammocks for an evening event. An Emerging Prairie Tweet read, “We sway while we work.”

That night, I watched a video of Tehven’s TEDxFargo talk. He was speaking at the Fargo Civic Center in 2014, outside of which sits a stone slab with the Ten Commandments.

“The Coen brothers were wrong,” he told the audience. “It isn’t a place of barrenness. It isn’t a place of cold. It’s a place of the most amazing people in the world.”

The following week I had dinner back home with a friend who works in the technology industry, and I told him I thought he should move to Fargo. Yes, it’s a place that gets an average of 50 inches of snow a year, and it’s so cold that the bikeshare moves inside for the winter. But there’s a lot going on there, I told him. Shortly thereafter, I woke up from a dream in which I was on my way back to Fargo. In it, I was with someone—perhaps my tech friend—and felt a sense of urgency. Eager to find housing, I sped westward, not wanting to miss out.

Inside Fargo, America's Most Undervalued Tech Hub - Fortune.com

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          Researchers say Treasure Worth Billions is Buried in North Dakota   
By Valley News Live
UND researchers are hunting for buried treasure in western North Dakota they say, is far more valuable than oil, coal and natural gas.

UND’s College of Engineering and Mines has received a federal grant, to retrieve Rare Earth Elements. Rare Earth Elements are found in western North Dakota coal and the ground that surrounds it.

Elements with names like Scandium metal and Terbium oxide can be worth hundreds of dollars a teaspoon, because they’re critical components in things we use every day.

Steve Benson, UND Engineering & Mines: “They’re used in a wide range of applications, ranging from the new batteries that are out, to components in wind turbines, to material in your cell phone.”

UND researchers now have a 900-thousand dollar grant to develop a method to commercially mine Rare Earth Elements.

The first step in the project will be trying to extract them from the stream of coal used to fire North Dakota power plants.

Steve Benson, UND Engineering & Mines: “Once we identify the best laboratory method, then we’ll build a skid mounted system we can take to a plant and test there.”

It’s research that has the potential to unlock billions of extra dollars into the State’s energy economy.

The United States currently needs to import Rare Earth Elements from China, despite the fact we have them in our own backyard.

Researchers say Treasure Worth Billions is Buried in North Dakota - Valley News Live

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          Dalrymple Highlights North Dakota's Economic Growth, Vision for Future at Economic Summit in Fargo   
By ND Governor's Office
BISMARCK, N.D. – Gov. Jack Dalrymple, along with the Greater North Dakota Chamber and Valley Prosperity Partnership, today hosted the Governor’s Summit on Economic Growth to showcase the state’s economic diversity and generate ideas for future growth. The one-day event was held at the Radisson Hotel in downtown Fargo and brought together business leaders and entrepreneurs from across the state.
 
Dalrymple kicked off the summit by touting North Dakota’s historic economic success and laying out his vision for future growth and opportunity. He highlighted the economic development strategies that over the past decade have fueled the state’s economic growth and diversification, including an emphasis on job creation, building a strong business climate and targeting key industry sectors such as value-added agriculture, technology, advanced manufacturing and aviation. 
 
The Governor cited North Dakota’s leadership position in several national rankings and studies, including best-run state, growth performer, housing growth and best state for young adults. He stated how North Dakota’s economic growth outpaced all other states in 2014, according to information released by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), a position the state has held for four of the past five years. He also focused on North Dakota’s low unemployment, population growth and how the state’s median age is getting younger.

“North Dakota’s economic growth stems from nearly every business sector, with no single industry telling the whole story of our state’s progress,” said Dalrymple. “We have worked hard to diversify our economy and grow our targeted business sectors, while capitalizing on emerging technologies and industries. This summit is a great opportunity to showcase our strengths and successes, and identify visionary and innovative ideas that will chart a course for North Dakota’s future growth.” 
 
During his remarks, Dalrymple spelled out his vision for future growth that includes building on the state’s economic development efforts and focusing on three key themes: people, places and opportunities. This vision will take North Dakota’s progress to the next level with an emphasis on quality of life and livability of communities, attracting a workforce to drive the state’s economic growth and making the state an obvious choice for those seeking diverse opportunities.
 
The Governor’s vision for growth includes such focuses as child care, affordable housing, education, outdoor recreation, Main Street revival, infrastructure enhancements, access to colleges and universities, and capital for business start-ups.
 
In addition to Dalrymple, the summit featured speakers and panelists covering topics such as attracting and retaining a workforce, accessing capital, and fostering innovation and entrepreneurial activity. Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley moderated a panel of business executives outlining a vision for building a workforce for tomorrow’s industries. The event also included a keynote by Joel Kotkin, an internationally-recognized authority on global, economic, political and social trends. He is the author of the widely praised new book, The New Class Conflict, which describes the changing dynamics of class in America.
 
Other statistics Dalrymple cited detailing the state’s economic progress included:
  • During the 2015 Legislative Session, Dalrymple signed into law an additional $397 million in tax relief. Overall, since 2009, he has worked with the Legislature to reduce property and income taxes by more than $4.2 billion. 
  • Over the past five years, North Dakota’s per capita personal income has increased nearly 42 percent, bringing North Dakota to 121 percent of the national average, according to the BEA.
  • North Dakota had $5.3 billion worth of exports in 2014, an increase of $4.3 billion since 2004 when the total value of exports was $1 billion.
  • Since 2004, North Dakota has created 123,600 net new jobs, an increase of 36.6 percent.
  • North Dakota is ranked first in growth in the number, employment and revenues of women-owned firms since 1997. 

 

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          Land Board Awards $11.5 Million in Latest Round of Energy Impact Grant Funding    
By ND Governor's Office
The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) today awarded $11.5 million in energy impact grants to local law enforcement agencies, non-profit service organizations and emergency medical services in North Dakota’s oil and gas region.  The Land Board awarded nearly $8 million to support the region’s law enforcement agencies and service organizations, and another $3.7 million for the region’s emergency medical services.
 
“These state funds will further support the region’s local law enforcement agencies, emergency medical responders as well as organizations that provide family support services,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple, chairman of the five-member state Land Board. “The Energy Impact Grant Program has been very helpful in addressing a wide range of needs associated with the region’s dynamic growth.”
 
Other Land Board members are Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt.
 
"The goal of these law enforcement grants is to put local law enforcement officers out on the streets and highways, properly trained, adequately equipped and affordably housed,” Stenehjem said.  “In addition, this year’s grants focus on prosecution by providing additional assistance to county state’s attorneys.”
 
Since 2011, the state has appropriated more than a half-billion dollars in Energy Impact Grant funds alone, a small portion of the state’s overall commitment to helping the oil and gas region’s counties, cities, schools and other political subdivisions address the challenges of rapid growth.
 
The nearly $8 million in state grants awarded today to the region’s law enforcement agencies and service organizations include:
  • $904,500 to the McKenzie County Sheriff’s Office for new police vehicles, law enforcement training, body cameras and other equipment and housing allowances for deputies, dispatch employees and corrections staff.
  • $596,935 to the Williston Police Department for six police vehicles, other equipment and salary support for three new officers.
  • $77,162 for the Williston Family Crisis Shelter to hire a services advocate and to purchase office equipment.
  • $443,057 to the Watford City Police Department for six new patrol vehicles, duty gear and other equipment, law enforcement training and housing allowances for 20 officers and two support staff.
  • $22,500 to Dickinson’s Domestic Violence and Rape Crises Center toward staff salary and operating costs.
  • $273,000 for the Killdeer Police Department to hire two additional patrol officers; to purchase two vehicles; to purchase new bulletproof vests and other equipment; and to provide officers with housing allowances.
  • $257,000 for the Tioga Police Department to purchase equipment, support officer salaries and housing allowances for three officers and one member of the department’s support staff.
  • $210,514 for the Ward County State’s Attorney Office to support the hiring of an assistance state’s attorney, victim-witness coordinator two additional support staff.
 
The Land Board today awarded 32 grants totaling about $3.7 million in support of the region’s emergency medical services. The grants approved include:
  • $485,000 to the New Town Ambulance Service for the purchase of a new ambulance and staff pay assistance.
  • $369,324 to the city of Williston for a quick-response vehicle, training, emergency equipment and staffing assistance.
  • $272,000 to the city of Tioga for a new EMS building and emergency medical equipment.
  • $332,000 to the Killdeer Area Ambulance District for the purchase of a new building and staffing assistance.
  • $200,000 to the Stanley Rural Ambulance Service District for a building renovation and expansion.
  • $100,000 to the United Rural Ambulance Service in Ward County for the construction of a new EMS building.
  • $92,750 for the Westhope Ambulance Service to complete the construction of a new building and to support staff pay.
  • $50,000 for the Ray Ambulance Service to purchase emergency medical equipment and supplies.
  • $142,200 for the Renville County Rural Ambulance Service to support staffing of ambulance services in the Mohall and Glenburn areas.
  • $60,000 for a new ambulance and emergency medical staffing assistance in Ward County.
 
For a complete list of grants approved by the Land Board today go to www.nd.gov/energyimpact.

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          Land Board Awards $15 Million to K-12 Schools, $1.3 Million to Airports in Western North Dakota   
By ND Governor's Office
The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) today awarded $15 million in Energy Impact Grant funds to K-12 schools and another $1.3 million to airports in western North Dakota’s oil and gas region.
 
On Wednesday, the Land Board awarded $11.5 million in grants to the region’s local law enforcement agencies, emergency medical services and non-profit service organizations.  Since 2011, the state has appropriated more than a half-billion dollars in Energy Impact Grant funds alone, a small portion of the state’s overall commitment to helping the oil and gas region’s counties, cities, schools and other political subdivisions address the challenges of rapid growth.
 
“Working together, we are making great progress in addressing the impacts associated with a growing economy and population,” said Gov.  Jack Dalrymple, chairman of the Land Board. “These grants are part of a much larger, ongoing commitment to working with our local leaders in western North Dakota so that we continue to build on our advancements.”
 
Other Land Board members are Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt.
 
The Land Board approved $15 million in state grants for 62 school districts The Land Board will award an additional $15 million in grants to the region’s K-12 schools next year.
 
All of the state funds awarded today will be used for school renovations and other capital improvement projects. The grants awarded today to K-12 schools include:
  • $2.65 million - Williston Public School District #1
  • $1.29 million - Dickinson Public School District #1
  • $830,999 - Killdeer Public School District                                      
  • $1.39 million - McKenzie Co. Public School District #1
  • $950,622 - New Town Public School District
  • $741,165 - Stanley Public School District #2
  • $655.655 - Bottineau Public School District #1
  • $403,754 - Mohall, Lansford, Sherwood Public School District
  • $415,429 - Tioga Public School District #15                                              
  • $581,979 - Beach Public School District #3
  • $276,734 - Bowman Public School District 
The Land Board today also awarded $1.3 million in Energy Impact Grant funds to support capital improvement projects at six airports. Today’s grant awards for airport improvements are:
  • Dickinson Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport - $642,486 for apron improvements, security upgrades and for the development of a master plan and wildlife hazard assessments.
  • Minot International Airport - $165,878 for phase-two construction of a terminal access road and develop of a master plan.
  • Garrison Municipal Airport - $178,678 for construction of fueling apron and runway rehabilitation.
  • Kenmare Municipal Airport - $157,331for runway light improvements.
  • Washburn Municipal Airport - $64,871 for apron and taxiway expansions.
  • Westhope Municipal Airport - $96,793 for an apron expansion project and development of a master plan. 
For a complete list of grants approved today by the Land Board go to: www.nd.gov/energyimpact.

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          [J.F. Sebastian] While reading a good discussion at MacInTouch.com about the current state of Ap...   
While reading a good discussion at MacInTouch.com about the current state of Apple Stores and customer experiences in them, one poster gave his opinion of the difference between Steve Jobs and the current Apple executive team that I thought was a good summary of what Apple is lacking without him around:

"Apple has been a lifestyle company since the iPhone was introduced; specifically, the iPhone has created a lifestyle, and therefore the company has filled the gap and "answered the questions" associated with having a society carrying around always-on, always connected, little super-computers. I'm not convinced that the Apple Store we know now, let alone some of Apple's products, are quite what Steve would have approved of. To be honest, when Steve Jobs was alive, he was a bit of a ringmaster and purveyor of taste. What went to production only did so, generally, if he fully approved of it. He was always coaxing out of Ive and many others the product of their talents, and when he was happy with the product of their combined talents, that is when the general public saw it.

Like many organizations which have had dynamic and irreplaceable leaders, like Jobs, no matter how many high-quality, high-talent, lieutenants are in place when that leader departs, all those heads which they used to lead, coach, and coordinate, are now left to their own devices. Tim Cook was, and still is, probably the best CFO in modern business history (of course it should be easy to be an effective CFO if the company you work for is making money). This does not make him a great CEO or leader for Apple, but he is very good an managing billions and billions of dollars in cash, and knows how to make more cash. However, he is not creative and not a tastemaker; not like Jobs. He relies on others in his organization to do that. Although folks like Ive haven't lost any of their talent or personal vision, there is no longer that driving force which is challenging them to higher levels of performance, new ideas, etc.

Which leads us to the current state of many Apple Stores (not all), the rocky introduction of Watch, the unremarkable, and at the same time remarkable, evolution of the iPhone and iPad and many other Apple missteps of recent memory. I think the Apple product line would be very different right now if Steve had lived and continued to be the tastemaker and driving force behind the company. If Steve were around, there wouldn't be 5 different iPhones on sale at the same time. The Mac Pro would never have been allowed to languish, Apple Watch may or may not have come to market when it did, or at all, and maybe not in the form we know now, and I believe that Apple Stores would be places that regular folks and programmers could go and both feel appreciated and receive the service that meets their needs. When he passed, all of those qualities of the old Apple passed with him, and mere mortals now run Apple."

          North Dakota UAV Business Grows   
By Ag Week
The UAV industry continues to grow and evolve, and Field of View is growing and evolving with it.

New regulations for unmanned aerial vehicles proposed in February by the Federal Aviation Administration “are a breath of fresh air,” says David Dvorak, CEO of Grand Forks, N.D.-based Field of View. “They provide our industry with more confidence that this is going to happen. People are finally starting to invest in the technology, which is good for us.”

The company, which he launched in 2010, seeks to “bridge the gap between unmanned aircraft and precision agriculture,” as the company’s website puts it.

By all accounts, the use of UAVs, also known as drones and unmanned aircraft systems, can be a big plus in agriculture and other industries. The Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International estimates easing current restrictions of UAVs would create 70,000 jobs and generate $13.6 billion in economic impact within three years in the U.S.

The FAA’s new proposal, which could be enacted by the fall of 2016, would pave the way for widespread commercial use of drones weighing fewer than 55 pounds. The FAA wants to balance the economic value of commercial use against the safety risk.

“The rule, as proposed, would seem to be good for agriculture,” Dvorak says. “So the regulatory side seems to be falling into place at last.”

Field of View’s flagship product, GeoSnap, generally has drawn more interest overseas because other countries have fewer restrictions on air space. Now, with the FAA proposal, domestic interest is picking up.

GeoSnap is an add-on device for multispectral cameras mounted on either manned or unmanned aircraft. Such cameras capture images in the red, green and near-infrared bands, allowing users to visualize plant stress better than they can with most other camera systems, Dvorak says.

GeoSnap takes images captured by the multispectral camera and maps them with real-world coordinates, a process known as georeferencing. That allows users to know the aerial images’ exact location on the ground.

Field of View recently came out with a less expensive version of GeoSnap, known as GeoSnap Express, “that will be useful for some of our newer customers,” Dvorak says. “Sometimes you just want to try it (the technology), and this is a really good system to help people get up and going with it.”

GeoSnap Express costs $1,450 or $1,950, depending on the model. GeoSnap Pro, the original version, costs $7,000 or $9,000, depending on the model.

Field of View also is offering a new product that involves thermal payloads.

“We’re able to map vegetation temperature across the field, which will help give us an indication of where water stress might be and to detect where plants get sick,” Dvorak says.

And Field of View has begun working with Minneapolis-based PowerOfGround to offer image processing services. For more information, visit www.powerofground.com.

“Some people want to do that (image processing) themselves,” Dvorak says. “Others want somebody to do it for them.”

Dvorak grew up in St. Cloud, Minn., and came to the University of North Dakota in Grand Forks to study engineering. At UND, he developed a special interest in the use of unmanned aircraft and multispectral cameras in precision agriculture.

He and another company employee work in Grand Forks. A third, an engineer, works in California. Field of View uses a Fargo, N.D., company for its international marketing.

“Good things are happening in our industry,” Dvorak says. “And we see that continuing.”

Previously posted in "North Dakota UAV Business Grows - Ag Week"

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          North Dakota Ranks No. 1 in 2014 GDP Growth   
By ND Governor's Office
North Dakota’s economic growth outpaced all other states last year, according to information released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Factors driving the state’s top ranking include continued growth in economic production, new jobs, rising wages and increasing export sales. North Dakota has led the nation in economic growth for four of the past five years.
 
North Dakota’s gross domestic product (GDP), a measure of total economic production, increased 6.3 percent in 2014 to top economic growth among all states. Over the past decade, North Dakota’s economy has averaged an annual growth rate of 6.5 percent compared to the national average of 1.4 percent. Since 2010, the state has averaged an 8.7 percent growth rate in GDP.
 
“This top ranking proves once again that our continued economic growth stems from nearly every business sector and that no single industry tells the whole story of North Dakota’s progress,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple. “We have worked hard to diversify our economy and expand our targeted industries, and those strategies are producing real results with increased economic production, job growth and rising wages.”
 
According to the BEA, North Dakota’s economic growth is reflected in many areas of commerce, including wholesale trade, retail trade, construction, transportation, manufacturing, energy, and finance and insurance. The BEA report can be viewed at www.bea.gov.
 
Other statistics that detail the state’s economic progress include:
 
  • North Dakota’s per capita personal income in 2014 was $54,951, an increase of $25,109 since 2004 when the per capita personal income was $29,842. This brings North Dakota to 119 percent of the national average, according to the BEA.
  • North Dakota had $5.3 billion worth of exports in 2014, an increase of $4.3 billion since 2004 when the total value of exports was $1 billion.
  • Since 2004, North Dakota has created 122,800 new jobs, an increase of 36.6 percent.
  • North Dakota is ranked first in growth in the number, employment and revenues of women-owned firms since 1997.  


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          Dalrymple Celebrates Opening of Petro Serve Headquarters   
By ND Governor's Office
Gov. Jack Dalrymple today joined West Fargo city officials, state officials and employees of Petro Serve USA to celebrate the grand opening of the fuel supply cooperative’s new corporate headquarters in West Fargo.
 
“Petro Serve USA’s new corporate office is a great addition to West Fargo,” Dalrymple said. “The company’s decision to establish its corporate headquarters in this vibrant city is a testament to our ongoing work in North Dakota to create jobs and provide for a business climate that is second to none. We’re proud to have Petro Serve USA in our business community and we’re thankful for the jobs and investment in our state.”
 
Dalrymple congratulated Petro Serve CEO Kent Satrang and other company employees on the completion of their new corporate headquarters and also recognized the customer-owned cooperative for being a leader in providing renewable fuels choices at its 24 regional convenient stores.
 
Since 2009, Dalrymple has worked with the Legislature to reduce property and income taxes by more than $4.2 billion, including a reduction of $618 million in individual and corporate income taxes.
 
Petro Serve USA invested $1.25 million to refurbish an existing building at 1772 West Main Ave. for its new company headquarters, which will support 44 company employees.  Petro Serve USA is a cooperative with about 2,200 member owners and 360 employees. In addition to its convenience stores and fuel pumps, the cooperative also supplies home heating, commercial and agricultural fuel and lubricating oil.
 
Those joining Dalrymple for the grand opening included Satrang, Petro Serve USA COO Clark Erickson, Petro Serve USA President Time Sunde, West Fargo Mayor Rich Mattern and North Dakota Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger.

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          Land Board Awards More than $12 Million in Energy Impact Grants   
By ND Governor's Office
The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) today awarded more than $12 million in Energy Impact Grants for political subdivisions impacted by rapid development in the state’s oil and gas counties. More than 130 grants totaling $12,360,242 were awarded from the Oil and Gas Impact Grant fund to political subdivisions, including cities, counties, townships and park districts.
 
The Legislature provided nearly $240 million in Energy Impact Grants for the 2013-2015 biennium to help western North Dakota address increased growth and activity. More than $18 million of that amount was allocated for political subdivisions without a specific grant round. Other grant rounds include cities, fire districts, emergency medical services, K-12 schools, higher education, airports and law enforcement.
 
“These grants are an important part of our ongoing commitment to help the oil and gas region meet the challenges created by rapid growth,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple. “This funding will help political subdivisions in western North Dakota address their immediate needs and make the necessary infrastructure enhancements to mitigate the impacts of increased energy development.”
 
Dalrymple is chairman of the five-member Land Board. Other members of the board are Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt.
 
To date, including the grants awarded today, the Land Board has committed nearly $220 million in state Energy Impact Grants and will award a total of nearly $240 million in grants during the 2013-2015 biennium. The grants are used to address a wide range of needs, including enhancements for law enforcement agencies and emergency services; upgrades to airports, as well as county and city infrastructure; and support for growing schools.
 
In all, the state will invest about $2.7 billion to support the state’s oil and gas region during the current biennium. The state commitment – more than twice the amount of the previous, two-year funding package of about $1.2 billion – includes funding for highway, county and township road improvements; water supply and water treatment projects and the development of affordable housing. Other state commitments include stationing more Highway Patrol troopers in western North Dakota; enhancements to the region’s court system and funding for dust suppression projects.
 
For a complete list of grants approved today by the Land Board, go to: www.nd.gov/energyimpact.

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          Forbes Profiles North Dakota Tourism's Legendary Impact on the State's Image   
By ND Commerce Tourism Division
Forbes recently profiled research done by Longwoods International examining the impact North Dakota Tourism’s “Legendary” marketing campaign has had on the state’s economic development image. Research results showed that while the campaign has been successful recruiting travelers to North Dakota, its “halo effect” was also successful in improving the overall perceived image of the state, which can improve opportunities for economic development.

“While our primary goal has always been to bring nonresident travelers to North Dakota, we have also served as the state’s primary marketing agency sharing positive news and opportunities with people who may not otherwise know much about North Dakota,” said Sara Otte Coleman, director of the tourism division for the North Dakota Department of Commerce.

For those targeted by North Dakota Tourism’s marketing campaign, which mainly includes residents of Minnesota, South Dakota, Montana, Wisconsin, Manitoba and Saskatchewan, research proved their more positive views on multiple aspects of the state, such as:

         A place to live? Yes, up 41%.

         A place to start a career? Yes, up 100%.

         A place to start a business? Yes, up 75%.

         A place to attend college? Yes, up 87%.

         A place to purchase a second home? Yes, up 113%

         A place to retire? Yes, up 75%.

This same research was repeated with similar results in North Carolina, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin.

Tourism economics also did a similar study with Destination Marketing Association International, which documents the positive effects that destination marketing has on a region’s larger economy. Find more on this report at: http://www.destinationmarketing.org/topics/economic-engine.

This unintended yet powerful impact means that public funding spent on tourism marketing is a multi-beneficial investment with the potential to bring additional private funds back to the state. In fact, while North Dakota Tourism’s budget ranks 39th out of 44 reporting U.S. states, its return on investment has been exceptional at over $100 in visitor spending for every $1 spent on advertising. In total, visitors spent $3.6 billion in North Dakota in 2013.

That same year, North Dakota hosted 24 million visitors, which was an increase of 22% over 2011. Visitors to North Dakota have steadily increased throughout its ND Legendary marketing campaign, which began in 2002.

Tourism is the state’s third-largest industry, which includes hospitality, attractions, and events, shopping and dining. The industry is the fifth-largest employer and contributes the equivalent of $1,011 per household to the state economy.

To read the full article from Forbes, click here. 

For more information about North Dakota Tourism, visit: www.ndtourism.com or call 701-328-2525 or 800-435-5663.

Follow North Dakota Tourism on Facebook or on Twitter and get tips on what to see and do all year long.

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          NDSU Study Gives Hard Numbers to the Impact of the Oil & Gas Industry   
KX News
People at the Capitol are learning just how drastic the impact of the oil and gas industry are having on our state. 

43 billion dollars was added to the North Dakota economy in 2013 according to an NDSU study.

To support this growth 60,000 jobs have been created since 2005.

This is a 750 percent total increase.

Dean Bangsund a research scientist from NDSU says that North Dakota still has a long way to go to keep up with the changes.

"I think the industry has expanded faster than the state could respond in terms of infrastructure, there is tremendous needs for roads, sewer and water, housing, everything that goes with maintaining a healthy economy, we now need to catch up so I think that despite all of the revenues coming in we still have some tremendous challenges for us in Western North Dakota." says Dean Bangsund, research scientist as the Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics at NDSU.

Bangsund says that he expects the number of jobs created to drop in 2015 depending on the price of oil and what the industry does in response to those changes.

NDSU Study Gives Hard Numbers to the Impact of the Oil & Gas Industry - KX News

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          ND Governor Dalrymple to Sign $1.1 Billion "Surge Funding" Bill   
By Washington Times

Gov. Jack Dalrymple has slated a signing ceremony for a bill that will fast-track $1.1 billion for highways and communities affected by North Dakota’s exploding growth.

The governor’s staff says he will sign the bill Tuesday morning at the state Capitol.

The Senate voted 46-0 on Monday to approve the “surge funding” bill that is being rushed through the legislative process so projects can begin by summer. Most of the money is slated for the booming oil-producing region in the western part of the state.

ND Governor Dalrymple to Sign $1.1 Billion "Surge Funding" Bill - Washington Times 

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          BNSF Plans to Spend $326 Million on North Dakota Projects   
By The Daily News
BNSF Railway plans to spend about $326 million this year on improving rail capacity and maintenance in North Dakota, where agricultural shippers say a backlog of railcars is hurting them financially.

The 2015 projects include building 37 miles of double track between Minot and Williston; installing of traffic control signaling near Devils Lake, Dickinson, Hillsboro and Jamestown to improve traffic flow; extending siding between Mandan and Glendive, Montana, enabling trains on the same line to pass one another; and upgrading the capacity of the rail yard in Dickinson.

The work will help connect North Dakota products to key markets and improve Amtrak's Empire Builder passenger line, which operates on the BNSF network, company spokesman Tom Albanese said.

"We know our customers are competing in a fast-paced, global economy where a smooth, efficient supply chain can be the difference between winning and losing in the marketplace," he said.

Members of North Dakota's congressional delegation issued statements saying the BNSF upgrades should help further reduce the backlog of railcars, which Rep. Kevin Cramer, D-N.D., said already has been easing in recent weeks.

"This, along with (the railroad's) record-setting commitment to improve the entire U.S. rail network, will help North Dakota's resources get to market safely and quickly," he said.

BNSF announced in November it would spend $6 billion in 2015 for capital improvements throughout its system. The railway operates in 28 states and three Canadian provinces.

BNSF Plans to Spend $326 Million on North Dakota Projects - The Daily News

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          Building a Giant in the Heavy-Equipment Industry   
By Gallup
"To be successful today, you've got to convince customers that you'll take care of them when they're down -- and you've got to walk the walk, you can't just talk it. You've got to prove it time and time again."

So says Ron Offutt, founder of RDO Equipment Co., one of the largest John Deere dealers in North America. He is also the founder of R.D. Offutt Company, the largest potato grower in the U.S.

For more than 45 years, Ron has been building an empire on lifelong relationships with agriculture and construction equipment customers by adhering to three simple principles: maintain a sense of core values, understand your stakeholders' ever-shifting needs and deliver the finest service. His family business grew steadily, got big, went public and then was taken private again, and the equipment side became a $2 billion business.

It all started along the North Dakota-Minnesota border in the metropolitan area of Fargo-Moorhead in 1968. Ron was farming in partnership with his father and renting equipment from a John Deere dealer in Casselton, North Dakota, when the dealer offered him the opportunity to buy the business.

From that initial purchase, Ron steadily acquired John Deere dealerships throughout the upper Midwest. RDO now operates in more than 100 locations across the U.S. and worldwide, with 90% domestic revenue growth over the past five years (13.9% compound annual growth rate) and nearly triple domestic operating income growth. RDO offers a wide array of construction and farming equipment for high-performance companies across the globe.

How did one dealership turn into a giant in the heavy equipment industry? With an intense focus on engaging employees and customers throughout their business.

From Private, to Public, to Private Again

A visit to RDO in late 2014 finds a workforce brimming with excitement about the company's heritage and its future. In the flagship Moorhead location, relics from the past -- classic tractors and other historical machinery -- are on display alongside cutting-edge farming equipment. In a daily storewide meeting, team members discuss the projects they are currently working on and exchange ideas, while managers motivate their employees with goals for that day, week and month.

Employees at the store are quick to say that the company is a "great place to work."

"This is a great industry to be in, and if you're going to be a part of it, we want you to choose us," says Jean Zimmerman, RDO's executive vice president of organizational development.

Zimmerman notes that the company's culture is guided by the principles of servant leadership, radical transparency, personal growth and, above all, trust.

As RDO grew throughout the 1970s, 80s and 90s, so did the enticement of taking this family-owned business public. In 1997, Ron issued an initial public offering on the New York Stock Exchange. In a booming economy, the decision seemed to be the right one. But almost immediately, things didn't turn out as planned.

"Very quickly I knew that I didn't like the public game, and I don't think my father did either. There was lots and lots of pressure to grow," says Christi Offutt, Ron's daughter and chairwoman and CEO of RDO. "But what I was learning was that the more pressure the team got to meet quarterly expectations, the worse the company was performing. We were moving away from talking about the customer, we were moving away from talking about the culture, and we were spending all of our time talking about meeting analyst expectations to keep the revenues growing."

Amid these frustrations, the board of directors chose Christi to become chief operating officer in 2001. Soon after that, the Offutt family took the company private again, where it has remained ever since. Christi stayed at the helm. Ron characterizes this time as the dividing point between what RDO originally was and what it is today.

"I think there are two cultures in the life of our business: the one that I started, and the one that Christi started," Ron says. "I was able to be successful in the business when I created a culture of tremendous loyalty on behalf of the employees who worked for me. We knew each other's families; we knew each other's personal strengths and weaknesses. As [the company] grew, that culture needed to change for the company to take the next step, which Christi brought to the house."

Shifting From a Transactional Business to a Solutions Provider

In the company's first phase, before Christi took over in 2001, RDO sold much more individual agricultural equipment. Farms were smaller then, and there were more of them.

"When I started, [RDO] was very much a transactional business -- sale by sale, customer by customer," Ron says. "Today it's more about being a solutions provider for your customer and helping that customer solve his or her problem."

In RDO's modern culture, top leaders at the company say they maintain their success internally and externally by adhering to a set of action-oriented core values for business operation. These values include collaborating with employees, building customers for life, creating opportunities and committing to doing what they say and playing to win. RDO prides itself on the principle "There are no secrets here."

"We've instilled and empowered our managers to understand what our core values are and how we operate with our stakeholders so they can make the right decision," says Chris Cooper, an executive vice president at RDO.

Keith Kreps, also an RDO executive vice president, says a culture of creativity and trust exists companywide, which fosters innovation and high levels of employee engagement. "When you don't feel like you're paralyzed by making the wrong decision that could affect your career or affect your job -- as long as you made an educated decision -- you really get people coming out with great ideas and a lot of creativity. They're willing to go out there and 'wow' our other employees and customers," Kreps says.

Toward True Engagement

In 2014, RDO worked with Gallup to move beyond employee satisfaction -- which focuses more on superficial company perks -- to true employee engagement, which is about fostering a deeper sense of connection to one's job and company. Now, 52% of RDO's employees are engaged, with 8.67 engaged employees for every one actively disengaged employee. Organizations that lead the world in employee engagement have 9.1 engaged employees to every disengaged employee, so these are "very encouraging early results," Zimmerman says.

Zimmerman credits these results to initiatives the company implemented over the past several years. Every employee now has an individual learning plan, and RDO spends 15% more on training than comparable-sized organizations. The company offers a 30-month management institute for its leaders. RDO leaders have also integrated engagement into their leadership approach and communication strategy, weaving it into their operations and day-to-day conversations.

"I truly believe that the initiatives we've developed to support our culture along with a strengths-based leadership approach leads to a more engaged workplace culture," Christi says.

Zimmerman agrees, emphasizing that the culture must promote hard work and RDO must be an enjoyable place to work. "We've taken steps of making this a place that attracts and keeps employees and attracts and keeps our customers," he says.

Growing Pains

Because of RDO's persistent growth, the company is experiencing some growing pains. In part, this is the result of the breakneck pace of North Dakota's economy and the various challenges that come with operating in nine U.S. states. Business is booming so much that there are too many jobs and not enough people to fill them.

"We've got well over 2,000 employees, but we have opportunities to continue to grow," Cooper says. "We have close to 200 open positions that we're still trying to fill."

Christi mentions that there is plenty of competition for today's skilled labor pool: "We've recruited from everywhere -- Georgia, Florida, California, Alaska -- it's a continuous challenge."

Amid these challenges, RDO continues to redefine the business of equipment in the 21st century. The company's leaders say RDO is committed to finding cutting-edge solutions for its customers.

"I think you'll see less growth in the size of the machines," Ron says. "What you're going to see is more intelligent equipment, and that will increase productivity for the producer."

This kind of "precision agriculture" may keep RDO at the forefront of offering technological solutions to its customers, and the company sees further growth from its ventures in Russia, Ukraine, Mexico and Australia in the years to come. Already these international partnerships are providing solutions to a wide range of customers, even in troubled hot spots. RDO forecasts $360 million in international revenues in 2015, of which Russia and Ukraine factor into the mix.

Ryan Offutt, Ron's son and Christi's brother, runs RDO's Russia and Ukraine operations. As someone who represents the future of RDO and the path it will take in decades to come, he reflects on how what RDO means to customers in 2015. "We're a big part of our customers' lives, and they're dependent upon on our team members to deliver solutions to them every day," Ryan says. "Having a reliable partner is critical to their success."

Building a Giant in the Heavy-Equipment Industry - Gallup.com

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          No Bust Seen as Dakota Oil Firms Keep Staff Amid Price Drop    
By Bloomberg Business
A plunge in global energy prices that has put some North Dakota oil rigs in a deep freeze has yet to chill the state’s hiring climate.

By almost any metric -- the jobless rate, payrolls, claims for unemployment benefits -- there is scant evidence to indicate the state at the epicenter of the U.S. shale-oil boom is about to stumble.

With memories still fresh in their minds of how difficult it was to find help, energy-industry employers in the fourth-smallest state by population probably won’t be quick to dismiss staff. Even those people who are let go may find their skills are transferable, filling positions to finish infrastructure projects long-delayed by a worker shortage.
 
“This won’t be a bust,” Harold Hamm, founder and chief executive officer of Continental Resources Inc., the largest leaseholder and producer in the Bakken shale play of North Dakota and Montana, said in a Jan. 28 interview with Bloomberg. “There’s plenty to do.”

At 2.8 percent in December, North Dakota’s jobless rate has been little changed since July and is the lowest of any state in the U.S. It had been as low as 2.5 percent in April, a record in data going back to 1976.

Its payrolls grew by 24,500 workers last year, or 5.4 percent -- the biggest percentage increase of any state.

Payroll Growth

Even over the past six months, when crude oil prices began to slide, payrolls in North Dakota have maintained an above-average rate of growth. Employment was up 2.4 percent from July through December, more than three times the 0.7 percent gain typical for the state over six-month periods during the U.S. economic expansion that ended in December 2007.

Job openings were up 17 percent last month from January 2013, according to data released Wednesday from the state’s labor department. There were 0.5 unemployed North Dakotans per opening in December, the latest month data were available. Vacancies have outnumbered the state’s jobless since June 2011.

Dismissals are also down. In December, 4,912 workers filed applications for unemployment insurance payments, 12.4 percent fewer than in December 2013.

“They want to retain their very best employees, anticipating a return to prior price levels,” said Michael Ziesch, manager of North Dakota’s Labor Market Information Center at the state’s labor department. “Even if things slow down somewhat, a plateauing or soft landing isn’t a bad thing -- it gives some of these jurisdictions a chance to catch their breath a little bit.”

Fewer Rigs

A global oil glut that’s sent prices plummeting for months is testing those North Dakota businesses awaiting a rebound. The number of oil and natural-gas rigs operating in North Dakota as of Jan. 30 was 143, the fewest in more than four years, according to data from Baker Hughes Inc. Still, energy companies are pledging to stay the course.

“We’re going to be training people during this downturn and taking advantage of time to increase the intensity of training,” said Continental Resources’s Hamm.

He said staffing levels in North Dakota haven’t changed and he has no plans to trim his workforce there this year.

West Texas Intermediate for March delivery closed at $53.05 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange on Feb. 3, down from a 2014 high of $107.26 in late June. WTI is up 19 percent from its Jan. 28 close of $44.45, which was the lowest since March 2009.

Tax Break

The drop in oil prices has been severe enough to trigger a self-correcting mechanism that may boost production by April, according to the state’s Department of Mineral Resources. Extraction taxes as of this month will be reduced by statute to 2 percent per barrel from 6.5 percent.

For some oil companies, the price slump could mean employees will transfer from rig operations to other projects.

“The state continues to pump a bunch of money into infrastructure, and those projects have been way behind,” said Andy Peterson, chief executive officer of the Greater North Dakota Chamber, the state’s chamber of commerce. “This will allow the state to catch up on some road building, bridge improvement, sewage plants, water plants, all kinds of things.”

State legislators are considering a $1.1 billion bill that would tap energy-related revenue to fund infrastructure needs in western North Dakota. The Senate passed the measure Jan. 29 by 44 to 2 and the House takes it up this month.

Redirect Workers

Bismarck, North Dakota-based oil producer MDU Resources Group Inc. is one company looking to allocate more workers toward its construction projects.

“In the construction business in the last couple years it’s been very difficult to find enough workers,” said Rick Matteson, the company’s communications director. “And in North Dakota, particularly with all the money that’s been directed toward the Bakken infrastructure growth, there’s just been a lot of work up there.”

In Watford City, where dirt roads connect drilling sites with a new Subway Restaurants sandwich shop and a hotel parking lot packed with rig-workers’ vans, the needs are evident. Other businesses, though, also are upbeat in the face of the oil-price drop.

“There’s always hiring” in this area, said Erin Hammel, general manager of the four-employee Anytime Fitness, which opened about four months ago. “We will of course need some more hands” when demand picks up, she said.

Broad Demand

The demand for services to accommodate the influx of oil workers is far-reaching. In Fargo, on the eastern end of the state opposite the Bakken oil formation in the northwest, the labor market is about as hot as it gets: a 2.2 percent jobless rate in November that was even lower than the state average.

That earned Fargo the No. 2 spot in the “best job markets for 2015” as ranked by ZipRecruiter, an online job-search tool, which analyzed U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

Job Service North Dakota, the state’s labor wing that provides workforce training, has targeted five areas based on priorities outlined by Governor Jack Dalrymple. Of 318 workers trained in program year 2013, a plurality of 117 were preparing for jobs in the health-care industry.

For North Dakota, the challenge is keeping those workers who streamed in to take advantage of oil-industry positions paying better-than-average wages. As labor-market conditions improve in their former states, those “commuter” workers could find themselves being drawn back, said Ziesch, the state labor agency official.

Total Payrolls

At the end of 2014, the state had 476,200 people on non-farm payrolls, up 29 percent from 2009 and almost four times the 8 percent increase in the national workforce over the same period, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics data.

To be sure, Ziesch and his data-watching colleagues project there will be some loss of jobs in the energy industry, though it may not show up for another couple months, when it becomes easier to separate changes induced by the slump in oil prices from the influence of harsh weather, he said.

In the meantime, business owners such as Simon Chan remain upbeat about prospects. The Los Angeles transplant opened Basil, a sushi bar and Asian-fusion restaurant, in North Dakota’s energy-boom capital of Williston in September 2013. He decided to move there based on a tip from a customer after spending seven years in Casper, Wyoming, another oil boomtown.

Chan has a help-wanted sign in the window even after a 15 percent drop-off in business since December that was larger than the typical post-holiday slowdown. He said a couple of workers will leave soon for reasons unrelated to the oil slump, and wants to have replacements ready to maintain a staff of 20 so service and quality don’t suffer.

“Oil is just like stock -- eventually, with time, it’ll go up,” he said.

No Bust Seen as Dakota Oil Firms Keep Staff Amid Price Drop - Bloomberg Business

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          Many Oil Firms Plan no North Dakota Layoffs Despite Cheap Oil   
Halliburton, Statoil ASA, Hess Corp and other North Dakota energy companies have decided, for now, not to lay off staff in the No. 2 U.S. oil producing state, hoping to be prepared for any prolonged rebound in crude prices.

Many oil producers and their contractors are trying to strike a balance between cutting costs and maintaining workforce reserves after a more-than 50 percent drop in oil prices since last June.

The drop has made some oil patch investors anxious that North Dakota could experience a third oil bust after slumps in the 1950s and 1980s. Local business leaders, though, say they're confident the state's economy can abide the slowdown.

Indeed, oil prices are nothing if not volatile, up about 19 percent in the past four trading days after plunging for months.

Whiting Petroleum Corp, the largest North Dakota oil producer, has no plans to lay off any of its 507 employees in the state, spokesman Eric Hagen said.

Oilfield service provider Halliburton has told its roughly 1,500 North Dakota employees that job cuts are not coming, for now. The update came in a letter to staff from Brent Eslinger, senior district manager for Halliburton in Williston, considered capital of North Dakota's oil patch.

Halliburton spokeswoman Susie McMichael added that the company "will continue to monitor the business environment" and cut costs as needed.

Hess Corp, the state's third-largest oil producer and one that uses Halliburton to hydraulically fracture wells, has no plans to cut North Dakota staff.

"We're all about lean efficiencies, but there are no plans for layoffs," Hess spokesman John Roper said.

Other large North Dakota producers, including Oasis Petroleum Inc and Statoil, have said they have no plans to reduce their workforce. EOG Resources Inc hasn't "announced any layoffs," spokeswoman K Leonard said.

To be sure, all energy-related companies in North Dakota's oil patch are hunkering down. Many of the state's oil producers, including Hess and Oasis, have cut 2015 capital budgets. Whiting and EOG release spending plans later this month.

While there are nearly 800 wells needing to be fracked in North Dakota, oil producers can wait up to a year to do so. Hess, for instance, plans to bring fewer wells online in 2015.

Halliburton's announcement last month that it will lay off 1,000 in the eastern hemisphere - as well as similar plans by peers Schlumberger NV and Baker Hughes Inc, which Halliburton is buying for roughly $35 billion - sparked concern that the companies would cull large portions of their North Dakota staffs, steps that would have a negative economic ripple effect. Such fears, for now, appear unwarranted.

Continental Resources Inc, North Dakota's second-largest oil producer, did not return a call seeking comment on staffing levels. Chief Executive Harold Hamm, though, bragged in a Tuesday press release that Continental's North Dakota acreage continues "to provide exceptional results."

Many Oil Firms Plan no North Dakota Layoffs Despite Cheap Oil - Reuters.com

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          North Dakota Hosted 24 Million Visitors in 2013   
By ND Commerce

ND Tourism announced research results including $3.6 billion in visitor spending and unveiled the 2015 travel guides, hunting and fishing guide, and state map.

Governor Jack Dalrymple and North Dakota Tourism Division Director Sara Otte Coleman today announced the state’s visitor numbers from 2013. A total of 24 million people visited North Dakota in 2013, spending $3.6 billion in-state in the process. The information was gathered by IHS as part of the Tourism Satellite Account (TSA), which is the international standard for measuring the contribution of tourism to an economy.

“North Dakota is truly a legendary place with a rich history, beautiful scenery and a variety of things to experience,” Dalrymple said. “We are pleased to have welcomed 24 million visitors to our state in 2013, and look forward to bringing more people here each year. North Dakota is increasingly becoming a destination state and we welcome the opportunity to show off all we have to offer.”

Visitation saw a 22 percent increase between 2011 and 2013, with tourism-related expenditures increasing 19 percent over the same time period. In fact, tourism to North Dakota grew so much over the last decade that domestic leisure travel alone in 2013 was equal to the state’s total visitation numbers in 2008. This includes day-trips, overnight vacations and those visiting friends and relatives. In fact, the North Dakota State Fair, State Parks and the Fargodome all boasted record attendance in 2013.

“While the major attention surrounding North Dakota’s economy is focused on energy and agriculture, tourism is an extremely valuable industry to our state’s bottom line,” Otte Coleman said. “The tourism division is pleased to continue elevating North Dakota in minds of travelers and to bring in additional tax revenue that supports industry growth.”

The $3.6 billion in tourism expenditures from 2013 resulted in $307 million in state and local government taxes paid by visitors. That is the equivalent to a resident tax savings of $1,011 per household or the equivalent of paying for the education of roughly 24,000 public school students.

The majority of expenditures, 55 percent, came from visitors from other U.S. states. International travelers made up 10 percent of the total, and in-state residents traveling to other parts of North Dakota accounted for 14 percent of spending.

All 53 of North Dakota’s counties also took in tourism revenue. The county with the highest revenue was Cass County at $537.36 million. Oliver County had the lowest at $2.08 million.

The majority of visitor expenditures were on food at just over $1 billion. That was followed by shopping at $805 million and accommodations at $544 million.

North Dakota Tourism commissions the study on TSA data every other year, which counts employment, sales and Gross Domestic Product, and allows (implicitly) for measurement of wages and taxes.

IHS is a leading business information services company based in Colorado, and provides North Dakota’s TSA information. IHS Travel and Tourism provides forecasting, research and economic impact analysis for a variety of private organizations, national tourism boards, as well as state and local tourism entities.

“The U.S. tourism industry has rebounded nicely since the Great Recession, but during that same time period, North Dakota tourism has grown by nearly 50 percent,” Shane Norton, director of economic impact analysis for IHS, said. “This explosive growth has been driven by a significant increase in visitation as well as per visitor spending, contributing to a significant rise in tourism related construction and investment.”

View North Dakota’s 2013 TSA report at http://www.ndtourism.com/information/north-dakota-tourism-facts-and-reports

Today North Dakota Tourism also unveiled the 2015 Travel Guide, State Map, and Hunting and Fishing Guide. Each of these resources helps visitors and potential visitors to plan their Legendary experiences, whether they be outdoors, urban, cultural, historical or otherwise. Both guides and the map are available at NDtourism.com.



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          Governor Dalrymple Delivers 2015 State of the State   
In delivering the State of the State address today, Gov. Jack Dalrymple said North Dakota’s strong economy and sound fiscal management make possible additional tax relief as well as investments in statewide priorities including infrastructure, education and meeting the challenges of growth.
 
“Two years ago I stood before you and reported that the state of our state was strong,” Dalrymple said. “Today, I am pleased to tell you that we’ve made great progress since then, and that North Dakota is stronger than ever.”
 
North Dakota has reduced taxes by $4.3 billion since 2009, and Dalrymple recommended that the legislature make even more tax relief a priority.  The legislature also will have an opportunity to pass a property tax reform bill that provides for more spending discipline, and makes it easier for taxpayers to understand how their tax dollars are used in comparison to other political subdivisions, Dalrymple said.
 
North Dakota has also made great progress on road and highway improvements, water supply projects and should continue to invest in the state’s infrastructure needs.  At the same time, North Dakota remains committed to advancing critical flood protection projects, Dalrymple said.
 
In just the past four years, the state has also leveraged nearly $90 million in tax credits and incentive funds to support the development of about 2,500 housing units reserved for low-to-moderate income residents and for essential service employees in western North Dakota.
 
“Never before in our state’s history have we undertaken such an ambitious, ongoing campaign to improve our roads and highways, expand water supply systems, advance flood control projects and develop affordable housing,” Dalrymple said.  “These projects enhance the quality of our lives and support our growing economy. “
 
Public Safety            
As the state’s population and commercial activity have grown, Dalrymple and the legislature have worked together so that North Dakota continues to be one of the safest states in the nation.    
 
Since 2011, the state has steadily expanded the capabilities of the Highway Patrol, the state Bureau of Criminal Investigation, the state’s judicial system and the Department of Correction’s parole and probation services.
 
For local law enforcement officers in western North Dakota, the region’s rapid growth has created significant challenges.  Within the last four years, the state has provided about $20 million in impact grants to help equip, train and staff local police departments and sheriff’s offices serving in North Dakota’s oil-producing counties.  The state has provided another $30 million to support the region’s fire and emergency medical services. 
 
Oversight of the Oil Industry
The remarkable amount of commerce throughout North Dakota requires that the state continue to strengthen its health and environmental protections as well as its oversight of the oil and gas industry, Dalrymple said.
                       
Since 2011, the state has significantly expanded its regulatory staff within the Oil and Gas Division and the Department of Health, and Dalrymple has recommended funding for 22 additional positions within the Oil and Gas Division and 19 more within the Department of Health. Additionally, the state has adopted new oil conditioning standards to improve the safety of crude oil for transport; required major reductions in the flaring of natural gas and has revised more than 60 sections of regulatory code to strengthen environmental protections.  Dalrymple has also recommended new positions within the Public Service Commission to augment federal oversight of rail safety and pipeline integrity.

“We should all be proud of the vital role our state is playing to help America strengthen its energy independence,” Dalrymple said.  “We have become the nation’s second-largest oil producer, and as our energy production has increased so has our responsibility.”
 
Education
North Dakota has steadily improved its K-12 education system, putting to rest the challenging issues of funding equity and adequacy.  The state has also significantly reduced the local cost of education by increasing the state’s funding commitment.   Dalrymple said the state has an opportunity to build on its success by maintaining strong funding for K-12 schools, by
investing in early childhood education, and by addressing the extraordinary needs of schools challenged by rapid enrollment growth.
 
North Dakota’s strong revenues also allow for continued investments in higher education, while most other states are reducing their funding.  Working together, the governor and legislature have improved the way North Dakota’s universities and colleges are funded, and have made major investments in capital projects and other improvements.

Moving forward, the state can continue to invest in the university system’s critical infrastructure needs, but should focus on programs that make college more affordable for students, Dalrymple said.

The state’s strong economy and sound fiscal management allow for continued investments in other priorities as well, including workforce development, improvements to the state’s park system and other quality-of-life enhancements.
 
“Here in North Dakota, we continue to drive an agenda for progress and a quality of life that is second to none,” Dalrymple said. “We know that progress comes with its own challenges and there is much work ahead.  But we have every reason to be optimistic about our state and the increasing number of opportunities it provides.” 
 
During his address, Dalrymple also spoke about recent declines in oil prices and the potential impact on state revenues.
 
“It’s important for the people of North Dakota to know that we are committed to a structurally balanced state budget, where ongoing spending never exceeds our available, ongoing revenues,” Dalrymple said.  “There are risks associated with any economy that relies on the value of commodities, and those risks must always be carefully considered.  We guard against these risks in several ways, including directing the vast majority of our oil and gas revenues – about 96 percent – to special reserve funds that are not used for ongoing operations.”

North Dakota’s investments in statewide infrastructure projects and other capital projects require one-time funding that doesn’t have to be repeated should state revenues decline.
In February, a new state revenue forecast will be completed and will help guide the legislature’s work, Dalrymple said.

“If adjustments to our spending plan are needed, I am confident our legislature will make prudent decisions based on the best available projections,” Dalrymple said. “In the end, I expect our legislature will find that we can continue to fund our priorities, maintain healthy reserves and provide even more tax relief.”
 

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          Taxpayers’ Income Doubles Since ND Boom Began   
By CBS Minnesota
Reported income by all North Dakotans has more than doubled to a record $30.4 billion since the infancy of the state’s oil boom in 2006, tax return filings show.

Tax Department figures released to The Associated Press show the number of taxpayers in the state has jumped 37 percent since the state’s oil bonanza began, from 339,000 in 2006 to 466,000 in 2013. Just over 440,000 tax returns were filed in 2012.

Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger said the increase in income and the number of taxpayers contributes heavily to the state’s robust economy.

“More people are buying more things with that type of income,” he said. “It has an effect on sales tax and the property tax base.”

While the total adjusted gross income has jumped a whopping 108 percent since $14.6 billion was reported in 2006, the average adjusted gross income for individuals dropped from $74,221 in 2012 to $71,538 last year. That’s still far above the average adjusted gross income on 2006 returns, which was about $43,300.

Rauschenberger attributed the dip in part to the more than 26,000 new filings over the previous year, which slightly brought down the average.

As for the millionaire list, the number of North Dakotans reporting incomes of more than seven figures in 2013 was pegged at 1,041, down from 1,126 in 2012. In 2006, 339 so-called income millionaires reported incomes of more than $1 million, records show.

That drop was due to the wealthier residents takingadvantage of tax cuts that expired the year prior.

“A lot of people moved income in 2012,” Rauschenberger said.

Reported million-dollar incomes come largely from royalties paid to mineral owners by oil companies in North Dakota’s 17 oil-producing counties, and “not from W-2 wages,” Rauschenberger said.

Historically, more than half of the oil royalties earned in those counties are paid to mineral owners who live outside of North Dakota and are not reported to the state for tax purposes, he said.

Kevin Iverson, manager of the census officeat the state Commerce Department, said most of North Dakota is benefiting from the state’s strong economy.

“There are some areas out there that aren’t doing so great, but by and large, we’re doing OK,” Iverson said. “And we’re certainly doing better that we use to.”

Taxpayer's Income Doubles Since ND Boom Began - CBS Minnesota 

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          Shale Boom Helps North Dakota Bank Earn Returns Goldman Would Envy   
By Wall Street Journal
Displaying WSJ Harmeyer.jpgIt is more profitable than Goldman Sachs Group Inc., has a better credit rating than J.P. Morgan Chase & Co. and hasn’t seen profit growth drop since 2003.

Meet Bank of North Dakota, the U.S.’s lone state-owned bank, which has one branch, no automated teller machines and not a single investment banker.

The reason for its success? As the sole repository of the state of North Dakota’s revenue, the bank has been one of the biggest beneficiaries of the boom in Bakken shale-oil production from hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. In fact, the bank played a crucial part in kick-starting the oil frenzy in the state in 2008 amid the financial crisis.

When other banks around the U.S. were curtailing lending and increasing reserves, Bank of North Dakota helped smaller banks in the state ride out the crisis by providing them with letters of credit, loan sales and bank stock. Since then, its total assets have more than doubled, to $6.9 billion last year from $2.8 billion in 2007. By contrast, assets of the much bigger Bank of America Corp. have grown much more slowly, to $2.1 trillion from $1.7 trillion in that period.

Much of that growth has been fueled by surging deposits of mineral-rights royalty payments and taxes stemming from North Dakota’s leap from the country’s sixth-largest oil producer to its second largest over the past five years. The bank taps those coffers to extend loans for new businesses, infrastructure such as hospitals and purchases of new homes, all of which have seen increased demand as oil workers flock to the state.

Set up in 1919 under a socialist-oriented government that represented farmers frustrated with out-of-state commodity and railroad owners, the bank treads a fine line between the private and public sectors in what today is a solidly Republican state. It traditionally extends credit, or invests directly, in areas other lenders shun, such as rural housing loans.

The bank’s mission is promoting economic development, not competing with private banks. “We’re a state agency and profit maximization isn’t what drives us,” President Eric Hardmeyer said. At the same time, he said “it’s important to me that we show a respectable bottom line” to taxpayers, noting that the bank historically has returned profits to the state’s coffers.

Its profit, which hit $94 million last year, has grown by double-digit percentages annually since 2010. Return on equity, a measure of profitability, is 18.56%, about 70% higher than those at Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan. To be sure, Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan are much larger institutions with more complex balance sheets.

North Dakotans can open a personal account at the bank’s only branch in downtown Bismarck, the state capital. But the bank offers few of the perks offered by traditional lenders and says retail banking accounts for just 2%-3% of its business. The bank’s focus is providing loans to students and extending credit to companies in North Dakota, often in partnership with smaller community banks.

Bank of North Dakota also acts as a clearinghouse for interbank transactions in the state by settling checks and distributing coins and currency. “We get compared to a little, mini Federal Reserve” on the prairie, said Mr. Hardmeyer, who has led the bank for nearly 14 years.

For years, Bank of North Dakota paid exactly $30 million annually back into the state’s general budgetary fund. But with North Dakota’s coffers flush with oil revenue, the legislature hasn’t requested the payments from the bank since 2010. Its loan book has expanded, but not fast enough to keep up with deposits and retained earnings.

It recently started offering mortgages to individuals in the most underserved corners of the state. But Mr. Hardmeyer dismisses any notion the bank could run into trouble with deadbeat borrowers. “We know our customers,” he said. “You’ve got to understand the conservative nature of this state. Nobody here is really interested in making subprime loans.”

Five years ago, Bank of North Dakota lent about 90% of its deposits, but that ratio shrank to around 60% in 2013.

Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services last month reaffirmed its double-A-minus rating of the bank, whose deposits are guaranteed by the state of North Dakota. That is above the rating for both Goldman Sachs and J.P. Morgan and among U.S. financial institutions, second only to the Federal Home Loan Banks, rated double-A-plus.

Lawmakers in a few other states such as Colorado and Maryland have advanced proposals to emulate Bank of North Dakota and set up state-owned lenders in recent years, so far without success. “Last year was a peak in terms of introducing these bills,” said Mathew Street, deputy general counsel at the American Bankers Association. “However many bills have been introduced, none have passed since 1919,” he said.

North Dakota officials hesitate to tout the bank as a model. “We think it’s worked well for us, but only because we’re very careful about how we use it,” said North Dakota Gov. Jack Dalrymple.

Not all of Bank of North Dakota’s initiatives have succeeded. One misfire in the early 2000s involved financing “Wooly Boys,” a film starring Peter Fonda and Kris Kristofferson. The movie, about a sheep rancher’s family, was a box-office flop. The bank, which had hoped to spark a tourism boom similar to that in South Dakota after the release of the Kevin Costner hit “Dances with Wolves,” wrote off the loss.

Shale Boom Helps North Dakota Bank Earn Returns Goldman Would Envy - The Wall Street Journal

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          Bypasses to Change Traffic Patterns "Overnight" in ND Oil Patch   
By Prairie Business
Governor Jack Dalrymple joined with state and local officials Tuesday to christen three truck bypasses in western North Dakota, paving the way for once-quiet communities to regain some semblance of normalcy amid the region’s energy boom.

“So here we are today in a place where 12,830 vehicles go by each and every day, about 5,000 of them being trucks,” Dalrymple said. “We’re in a place where the population can no longer be estimated, and we’re about to open up two critical transportation corridors that are going to change the way life feels around here overnight.”

Two Watford City bypasses will re-route truck traffic on U.S. Highway 85 and state Highway 23 around the city’s southwestern and southeastern edges to U.S. 85 south.

The other bypass in Alexander, where work started last spring, opened in September and also re-routes U.S. Highway 85 truck traffic. The final phase of that 3.7-mile bypass project included fully paved entrance roadways into Alexander at each end of the bypass.

North Dakota Department of Transportation Director Grant Levi told a packed room at a Watford City hotel that the agency he leads is “not only building roadways, we’re enhancing quality of life.”

Watford City Mayor Brent Sanford said the stories he had heard from Alexander of kids safely riding bikes to school and hearing chirping birds again, without the din of truck traffic, is something he couldn’t quite imagine.

“This is a very historic day, a very exciting day for Watford City. I still can’t imagine it’s going to be as quiet in the center of town as it’s going to be tomorrow,” he said.

Jeff Kummer , senior vice president of operations for Belfield-based MBI Energy Services, said in an interview that the opening of the bypasses will allow the company to be more cost effective.

MBI’s 715 truck drivers in the state transporting oil, water and sand used in the hydraulic fracturing process are paid by the hour, and those hours spent sitting in traffic are not helping the company financially, Kummer said.

“We are a logistics company, and bottlenecks in the transportation network area negatively impact our efficiency to move customer product,” he added.

MBI, founded in 1979, has 2,000 employees in 20 locations, but its four core spots in North Dakota generate 90 percent of the company’s revenue.

Kummer , who was born and raised in Watford City, said the opening of the bypasses is a positive step forward for the oil and gas industry as well as his hometown.

“I grew up in Watford City. It’s a huge positive. The quality of life in our little town is going to be much better,” Kummer said.

Darick Franzen , the president of the booming local Chamber of Commerce, said in a phone interview that he first came to Watford City from Illinois in January 2011, choosing to make investments in a community he was “immediately attracted” to for its small-town rural flavor.

“I don’t think anybody had a good idea what was coming around the corner,” Franzen said. “You just don’t hear people talk about a bust anymore.”

He said all of the road construction was an “absolute nightmare,” but with the opening of the bypasses a “staggering” number of trucks will no longer travel through the city.

“The amount of traffic that’s going to be shifted onto these bypasses … is really going to transform what Watford City will look and feel like,” Franzen said.

Dalrymple noted the historic significance of Tuesday’s ribbon-cuttings for the Oil Patch while also acknowledging the historic road construction investments made by the state during the 2013-14 construction seasons, with more than $1.6 billion in bids for roadway projects alone.

Watford City’s southwest bypass is a 7.5 mile-long four-lane highway and the southeast bypass, also a four-lane highway, is 5.7 miles long, at a total cost of $131 million. The Alexander truck bypass cost $28 million.

Dalrymple said the total commitment in the current biennium to western North Dakota is $2.7 billion.

“It’s not that long ago that North Dakota’s annual general fund budget was a little over $3 billion. To put that in perspective, it’s a big investment,” Dalrymple said, praising efforts by the state’s western legislators to help the Legislature to “see this is a necessary investment.”

That $2.7 billion investment in western North Dakota is more than twice the amount from the previous biennium.

For truck bypasses alone this biennium, the state is investing $409 million. Bypass projects also are underway in Dickinson, New Town and Williston.
 
 

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          Land Board Awards $5 Million in Latest Grant Round to Western Schools, Airports   
By ND Governor's Office
The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) awarded about $5 million in energy impact grants to K-12 schools and airports in North Dakota’s oil-production region. During this grant round, the Land Board awarded about $2 million to K-12 schools and another $3 million to airports in western North Dakota to help the region address the impacts of rapid growth.
 
“These grants are an important part of our ongoing commitment to help the oil and gas region meet the challenges the come with strong growth,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple, chairman of the five-member state Land Board. “By working together, we are making great progress in western North Dakota, but we know that there is much more work ahead.  We will continue working with local leaders to meet our challenges and build on our progress.”
 
Other Land Board members are Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt.
 
The Land Board approved grants for 13 school districts based on the recommendations of its K-12 school advisory committee, which is made up of school administrators from the state’s oil and gas region. The Land Board followed the committee’s recommendations to give priority to school districts that demonstrated a need for additional assistance since the start of the current school year.  The energy impact grants awarded to schools today include:
  • McKenzie Co. Public School District 1 - $336,000 for construction of additional classrooms, portable classrooms and other school upgrades.
  • Divide Co. Public School District - $274,000 for the development of teacher housing and communications equipment.
  • Stanley Public School District - $246,000 for high school renovations and fire alarm upgrades.
  • Tioga Public School District - $110,000 for high school and elementary school security upgrades.
  • Alexander Public School District 2 - $190,000 for cafeteria renovations.
  • Nesson Public School District 2, Ray, N.D. - $245,000 for modular classrooms and security upgrades.
  • Powers Lake Public School District 27 - $140,000 for teacher housing.
 
The Land Board also awarded $3 million in energy impact grants to support a wide range of infrastructure improvement projects and equipment needs at 10 airports serving western North Dakota.  The grants include:
  • Minot International Airport, $2.06 million towards construction of a new passenger terminal and other improvement projects.
  • Dickinson Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport, $108,000 to expand the aviation apron and for the design of improved runways and taxiways.
  • Williston’s Sloulin Field International Airport, $122,144 for emergency equipment and an environmental assessment.
  • Bowman Municipal Airport, $207,251 in additional state funding for the construction of a new terminal and fueling station. The state has previously provided $140,000 to support the improvement projects.
  •  Tioga Municipal Airport, $181,805 for planning and design of hangar construction improvements as well as taxiway and apron improvements.
  • Parshall’s Hankins Airport, $141,668 for apron pavement improvements.
 
For a complete list of grants approved today by the Land Board go to: www.nd.gov/energyimpact.
 
In addition to providing $240 million in energy impact grants, the state continues to support the oil and gas region in many other ways. In all, the state will invest about $2.7 billion to support the state’s oil and gas region during the current biennium. The state commitment – more than twice the amount of the previous, two-year funding package of about $1.2 billion – includes funding for highway, county and township road improvements; water supply and water treatment projects and the development of affordable housing. Other state commitments include stationing more Highway Patrol troopers in western North Dakota; enhancements to the region’s court system and funding for dust suppression projects.

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          Dalrymple, Badlands NGL Announce Largest Private Equity Project in State History   
By ND Governor's Office
Governor Jack Dalrymple along with William Jeffrey Gilliam, CEO of Badlands NGL, LLC, today announced the development of a North Dakota manufacturing plant that will convert ethane, a byproduct of natural gas processing, into polyethylene which is used to make a wide variety of end-use consumer and industrial plastics.
 
Badlands NGL, LLC, and its partners expect to invest $4 billion to build the polyethylene manufacturing facility in North Dakota. The project will be the largest private investment in state history.
 
“This project is fully aligned with our goals to reduce flaring, add value to our energy resources right here in North Dakota and create diverse job opportunities across the state,” Dalrymple said.  “By advancing the responsible development of our energy resources and by adding value to all of our resources, the opportunities in North Dakota are boundless.”
 
Joining Dalrymple and Gilliam for the announcement were Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring and Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, both of whom serve with Dalrymple on the North Dakota Industrial Commission which regulates the state’s energy industry.  Sen. John Hoeven also participated in the announcement which was held at the state Capitol in Bismarck.
 
"The role of the Industrial Commission in helping the Badlands’ project come together reflects the Commission's mission to promote oil and gas production in a manner that prevents waste and protects the rights of mineral owners," Goehring said. “When completed, this project by itself has the potential to reduce most of the flaring of natural gas in our state.  That’s real progress and good news for North Dakota.”
 
The value-added manufacturing plant will tap into North Dakota’s abundant supplies of liquid natural gas to source ethane.  The facility will convert ethane gas to low density and high density plastics which are used to make a wide range of end products for consumers and industry.  The facility will be able to produce 1.5 million metric tons of polyethylene, or 3.3 billion pounds annually, and will employ 500 highly trained people in manufacturing, marketing, administrative, safety, financial and executive positions. The project will take at least three years for full development.
 
“This is a good example of what we can accomplish by adding value to our energy resources,” Stenehjem said. “This plant will not only help us reduce the flaring of natural gas, but it will also create new, high-paying jobs and further diversify our state economy.”
 
Badlands intends to market the majority of the polyethylene products domestically, but product will also find its way to markets in Asia, South America and Europe.  Project developers say that the plant’s location in North Dakota will enable them to efficiently ship to world markets from the Pacific Northwest and from Atlantic ports.
 
“Badlands is proud to bring this manufacturing facility to North Dakota,” Gilliam said. “We are committed to maximizing the value of Bakken ethane for producers, their midstream partners and all gas processors. This facility is the solution needed to add value to North Dakota’s ethane supply and make it a commercially marketable product.  In doing so, there will actually be a market advantage for North Dakota polyethylene products.
 
“North Dakota elected officials and agencies have provided Badlands with by far the most business-friendly and pro-development environment in the United States, Gilliam said. “We have been fortunate to attract many of North Dakota’s leading business and community leaders as Badlands investors, and we continue to discuss debt and equity capital markets needs with major financial institutions.”
 
In developing the world-class manufacturing plant, Badlands is working with two strategic partners, Tecnicas Reunidas, or “TR” (www.tecnicasreunidas.es), which is based in Madrid, Spain, as well as Vinmar Projects (www.vinmar.com/projects/) of Houston, Texas. TR, one of the largest petrochemicals and polymers contractors in the world, is completing a preliminary engineering analysis for Badlands. This work is scheduled for completion in 2014 and will include technology evaluations, engineering and planning, and final site selection. 
 
Vinmar provides services in support of project finance for the development partners.  Vinmar and Badlands have signed a mutually binding, 15-year memorandum of understanding for 100 percent of the polyethylene to be produced by the Badlands project. 
 
Badlands NGL, LLC is a Delaware limited liability company. Principals and strategic partners of Badlands have considerable experience in development, construction and management of operations that convert natural gas liquid into polyolefin products.

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          North Dakota's State-Owned Mill Plans Expansion   
By The Washington Times

North Dakota’s state-owned flour mill is undergoing a more than $27 million expansion that will make it the largest wheat-grinding factory in the U.S., its chief executive said.

Vance Taylor, the mill’s general manager, said the expansion at the Grand Forks facility is necessary to meet growing flour demand.

During its budget year that ended June 30, the mill shipped record 1.2 billion pounds of flour and recorded $13.3 million in profits, the second-highest in its 92-year-history.

“We had record shipments in last fiscal year, and that adds up to record bushels of wheat ground up by the mill,” Taylor said.

The state-owned flour mill began operating in 1922. The idea was pushed by the Nonpartisan League, which said it would provide an alternative market for North Dakota farmers’ grain. Most of the mill’s profits go into North Dakota’s general fund, which finances a variety of state programs.

The state Industrial Commission this month approved $19.8 million to increase capacity at the mill. The three-member panel headed by Gov. Jack Dalrymple earlier this year approved $7.9 million for the expansion.

The mill buys most of its wheat from North Dakota farmers. It processes the state’s staple crop, hard red spring wheat, into bakery flour, which is used to make breads. It also mills durum into semolina and durum flour to make pasta. Most of the mill’s production is bulk to food makers. It also markets 5- and 10-pound bags of flour sold in grocery stores, along with packaged pancake flour and bread machine mixes.

North Dakota typically leads the nation in production of spring wheat and durum wheat.
The mill cleans, processes and mills more than 23 million bushels of spring and durum wheat ever year. The expansion, slated to begin next spring and finish next fall, will boost milling capacity by about 7.5 million bushels of hard spring week annually.

Taylor said the Grand Forks mill, the only such state-owned operation in the nation, currently grinds a near-equal amount of wheat as does a Nabisco-owed factory in Toledo, Ohio. The expansion would make the North Dakota mill the largest single milling site in the nation, he said.

Jim Peterson, marketing director for the North Dakota Wheat Commission, said the expansion also should help ease a backlog of grain shipments largely blamed on increased crude oil and freight shipments from the state’s booming oil patch.

“Logistics is a huge part of the equation,” Peterson said. “With the added pressure of oil movements, the closer the (wheat) processor and the ability to truck it to market is an added benefit.”

Bob Kuylen, who raises wheat and other crops in western North Dakota, said he trucks some of his wheat to the Grand Forks mill.

“The rail issue is one of the biggest issues there is for the farmer,” Kuylen said, while taking a break Thursday from harvesting wheat. “I think this is a good thing, especially with the rail issues. It means more capacity for farmers to get rid of some grain.”

North Dakota's State-Owned Mill Plans Expansion - The Washington Times 



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          Dalrymple Congratulates CHS Inc. for Moving Forward on Major Fertilizer Plant   
By ND Governor's Office
Gov. Jack Dalrymple said he is pleased that the CHS Board of Directors has approved final plans to build a nitrogen fertilizer plant near Jamestown, N.D.  CHS Inc. expects to invest about $3 billion to build a plant that will convert natural gas into fertilizers, providing the region’s farmers with greater supplies of nutrients essential for crop production.
 
“The board’s approval to move ahead on this major project is great news for our farmers and for the entire state of North Dakota,” Dalrymple said. “The plant will create jobs and provide our farmers with a reliable supply of fertilizers. At the same time, the CHS plant compliments our continued efforts to utilize and add value to the abundant supplies of natural gas produced in western North Dakota.”
 
Dalrymple spoke with CHS President and CEO Carl Casale following the cooperative’s board meeting.  The governor and officials at the North Dakota Department of Commerce have continued to assist CHS in developing the project ever since the cooperative began studying the project’s feasibility in 2012.
 
The fertilizer plant will be the single largest private investment project ever undertaken in North Dakota and the single largest investment in CHS history.  CHS officials said the plant will employ between 160 and 180 workers.
 
CHS plans to build the plant on a 640-acre site near the Spiritwood Energy Park.  The fertilizer plant will produce more than 2,400 tons of ammonia daily that will be distributed as urea and UAN liquid fertilizer. The fertilizers will be distributed to farmers and farm supply retailers in North Dakota and South Dakota as well as parts of Minnesota, Montana and Canada.
 
CHS officials plan to complete the plant’s construction and by operational ready in the first half of 2018. 

 

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          Land Board Awards Nearly $8 Million to K-12 Schools Impacted By Oil and Gas Development   
ND Governor's Office

The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) today awarded nearly $8 million to North Dakota K-12 schools impacted by the rapid growth of oil and gas development in the state. The Board approved 33 projects totaling $7,888,459, giving priority to safety and security needs, teacher housing, temporary portable classrooms to address increased student enrollment and other projects needed in preparation for the upcoming school year.
 
The Land Board allocated $25 million in Energy Impact Grant funds for the 2013-2015 biennium to benefit K-12 schools impacted by the state’s growing energy industry, with $12.5 million designated for each fiscal year. Prior to today’s action, the Board has awarded 65 grants totaling $15,530,000 to K-12 school districts.
 
“K-12 schools impacted by oil and gas development in the state are experiencing significant increases in student enrollment, expanding the need for teacher housing, portable classrooms and other renovations and enhancements to accommodate rapid growth,” said Gov. Jack Dalrymple, chairman of the state Land Board. “These grants will help our schools address the impacts of increased enrollments and prepare for the upcoming school year.”
 
In addition to Dalrymple, the Land Board includes Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt.
 
To date, including the grants awarded today, the Land Board has awarded nearly $196 million in state Energy Impact Grant funds and will award a total of $240 million in grants during the 2013-2015 biennium. The grants are used to address a wide range of needs, including enhancements for airports, law enforcement agencies and emergency services; upgrades to county, township and city infrastructure and support for growing schools.
 
In all, the state will invest about $2.6 billion to support the state’s oil and gas region during the current biennium. The state commitment – more than twice the amount of the previous, two-year funding package of about $1.2 billion – includes funding for highway, county and township road improvements; water supply and water treatment projects and the development of affordable housing. Other state commitments include stationing more Highway Patrol troopers in western North Dakota; enhancements to the region’s court system and funding for dust suppression projects.
 
For a complete list of K-12 school projects approved today by the Land Board, go to http://www.nd.gov/energyimpact  

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          Drones: Next Big Thing in Aviation Is Small   
By ABC News


The next big thing in aviation may be really small.

With some no bigger than a hummingbird, the hottest things at this week's Farnborough International Airshow are tiny compared with the titans of the sky, such as the Airbus 380 or the Boeing Dreamliner.

What's got aviation geeks salivating at Farnborough, this year's biggest aviation jamboree that features participants from 40 countries, are the commercial possibilities of unmanned aerial vehicles — drones to most of us.

Drones are more commonly known for their use in conflict areas. This week Hamas launched for the first time an unmanned drone into Israeli airspace that was shot down.

But drones, which can weigh less than an ounce, have potential commercial applications that are vast. The industry, military and non-military, is growing and could according to some see investments of nearly $90 billion over the next ten years.

Experts say they can be adapted to fly over fields to determine when crops need watering, fly into clouds in hopes of offering more precise predictions on twisters, track endangered rhinos, spot wildfires and search out vast stretches of land for missing children.

And like the dawn of the era of aviation a little over a century ago, innovations are often being conducted by individuals with an idea and endless enthusiasm. They won't find it easy though as the big players in the markets, such as Boeing and Airbus, are also getting involved.

A lot of the research has been taking place in big flat places such as the Plains States, where a broad expanse of land combines with universities near military bases with air space exclusions to make research possible.

Where California had Silicon Valley to drive its high-tech industries, America's central belt from North Dakota to Texas could become a new research and commercial center for the aviation industry — the Silicon Plains.

"This is open country for entrepreneurs," said Stephen McKeever, Oklahoma's secretary of science and technology. "There will be a Steve Jobs."

But things are a bit on hold at the moment for the American makers of unmanned air vehicles, or UAVs, as they await rules from the Federal Aviation Administration. Under current rules, you can legally fly drones for "recreational purposes," as long as you comply with certain basic guidelines — such as keeping well clear of airports.

Commercial operations are only allowed with special authorization, a cumbersome process that the government intends to streamline. Once they are able to do this, McKeever suggests the situation will be akin to the land rush that sent land-hungry settlers scurrying to his state in 1889.

The FAA is developing regulations to permit the widespread commercial use of drones while protecting privacy and preventing interference with larger aircraft. As part of this process, the FAA in December selected six test sites around the country where research on drones will be conducted in a variety of environments.

North Dakota is one of them, and Brian Opp, manager of aerospace business development for the North Dakota Department of Commerce, is at Farnborough, promoting the virtues of the weather. In other words, if your drone can work in the midst of a freezing North Dakota winter or its scorching summer, it will work anywhere.

"That's good news for us," Opp said cheerfully.

Drones: Next Big Thing in Aviation Is Small - abcnews.com



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          Fargo 2.0: It’s Not Like the Movie   
By Seattle Times


Growing up here, Greg Tehven heard all the jokes.

“When I’d tell people I was from Fargo, I would get laughed at. It was almost as if other cities bullied us,” said Tehven, 29, a self-appointed community booster and co-founder of Emerging Prairie, a network of local entrepreneurs and startups.

It was bad enough when the movie “Fargo” came out two decades ago. Now it’s back as a TV show, and this time, the gap between the Fargo on screen — the one with the woodchipper — and the city that surrounds him is galling.

Tehven’s Fargo is the five-block radius of downtown; a vibrant community of artists, tech entrepreneurs, college kids and possibilities. Once hollowed out, the downtown is now crowded with coffee shops, restaurants and quirky shops that draw in crowds of strolling pedestrians and cyclists.

Tehven’s Fargo is one of the nation’s fastest-growing cities.

Newcomers are pouring into the Fargo-Moorhead region, pushing its borders outward, filling the schools to capacity, but still not filling all its 5,700 current job vacancies.

Neighboring West Fargo has built so many new schools, they hold contests to come up with names. Fargo itself, population 109,000, now sprawls across 48 square miles, a footprint the size of Boston.

“You feel like you died and went to heaven,” said James Gartin, president of the Greater Fargo Moorhead Economic Development Corp. — the man in charge of encouraging economic growth in a place now ranked as the best place in America to find a job, the country’s third-safest community and its fourth-fastest growing metro region.

“It’s electric,” Gartin said. “It’s just an incredible time to be in this market. Not only with the business growth, but we have this incredible entrepreneurial ecosystem.”

These are boom times for all of North Dakota, as western oil fields bring in money and jobs at a staggering rate. The unemployment rate is near 2 percent and there’s so much revenue rolling in, the Legislature has cut taxes by $2.4 billion since 2009, yet the state still has a $500 million surplus.

The Bakken oil fields are 400 miles northwest of here, and while the region benefits from the oil boom, most of its prosperity is coming from within. The largest employers in town are the health-care companies, the region’s many universities, the banks and the tech companies, led by Microsoft.

Beyond the five-block core of downtown, Fargo levels out into a sprawl of neighborhoods and businesses, with more going up every day; 2,700 new housing permits have been issued this year.

Plenty of towns talk about revitalizing their downtowns. Fargo is actually doing it, thanks to the happy combination of a good economy, a thriving business climate and motivated residents.

“We’re building the kind of city we want to live in,” Tehven said.

The rebirth of Fargo started with one building, and one man determined to save it.

When Doug Burgum sold his Great Plains Software to Microsoft more than a decade ago, he turned his time and resources to invest in the neglected downtown.

He started with a dilapidated old school-supply building that was about to be razed for a parking lot. In 2000, the city paid Burgum $100,000 to take it off its hands.

Burgum refurbished the building and donated it to North Dakota State University. Today, it’s Renaissance Hall and houses the university’s architecture department.

Other developers stepped forward to renovate other buildings.

“People ask, ‘What’s left to do?’ ” Burgum said. “I tell them we’re just getting started.”

The downtown is an attractive city center with amenities that can make the difference in attracting new businesses and workers.

“Value what makes your community distinctive. Don’t try to look like everyone else,” said Thomas Fisher, dean of the College of Design at the University of Minnesota.

The two largest demographic groups in America today are the baby boomers and the millennials, born between the 1980s and 2000s.

Both groups, Fisher said, are being drawn to downtown living, often for the same reasons — they want the entertainment, shops and amenities you can walk to, unlike the sidewalk-free sprawl of the suburbs.

Fargo is a city of networkers. One person will notice that the downtown alleys could use some sprucing up, and in short order Alley Fair gets created, with volunteers fanning out over town to fill vacant alleys with art, plants and light. It can feel like the city has a downtown-improvement flash mob.

“Fargo is filled with really talented, creative, hardworking people that care,” Tehven said. “And we’re having the time of our lives.”

Fargo 2.0: It’s Not Like the Movie - seattletimes.com



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          North Dakota's Economic Growth Outpaces All Other States for Fourth Consecutive Year    
ND Governor's Office
For the past four years, North Dakota's economy has continued to outpace all other states, according to information released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). Factors driving the state’s robust economy include continued growth in economic production, new jobs and rising wages.
 
North Dakota's gross domestic product (GDP), a measure of total economic production, increased 9.7 percent last year to top economic growth among all states for the fourth straight year.  Mineral resources, including oil and gas extraction and coal mining, contributed 3.6 percent to North Dakota’s GDP growth.
 
“It’s very encouraging that our continued economic growth stems from nearly every business sector and that no single industry tells the whole story of the great progress we’re making,” Gov. Jack Dalrymple said. “Moving forward, we will continue to support economic growth through low taxes, a sensible and effective regulatory environment and a state government that is responsive to the needs of its people and businesses.”
 
In 2013, North Dakota’s economy produced a record $49.8 billion.  In the past four years, North Dakota’s economy has averaged an annual growth rate of about 12 percent compared to the national economy’s growth rate of 2 percent.
 
Wyoming produced the nation’s second strongest state economy in 2013, with a growth rate of 7.6 percent. The nation’s GDP growth rate slowed to 1.8 percent last year, after increasing 2.5 percent in 2012, the BEA reports.
 
North Dakota’s continued economic growth is reflected in many areas of commerce including manufacturing, agriculture, the energy industry, construction, transportation, wholesale trade, retail trade and the finance and insurance sectors. 
 
Other statistics that detail the state’s economic progress include:
  • North Dakota has created 116,600 net jobs since 2000.
  • North Dakota’s per-capita personal income of $57,084 represents the strongest income growth in the nation. In 2000, North Dakota’s per-capital personal income ranked 38th in the nation. Today, North Dakota’s personal income ranks second among all states.
  • The state continues to have the nation’s lowest unemployment rate, at just 2.6 percent.
The BEA report can be viewed at www.bea.gov.

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          North Dakota Oil Tax Fund About to Top $2 Billion   
By NewsOK

North Dakota's oil tax savings account is about to top $2 billion.

The Legacy Fund gets 30 percent of the state's oil tax collections. The money can't be touched before 2017 and it would still take a two-thirds vote of the Legislature for the state to dip into the fund.

North Dakota voters approved the fund in 2010. It received its first deposit of $34.3 million in September 2011. Monthly deposits have averaged $61 million, and the fund surpassed $1 billion in April 2013.

This month's transfer of $81.7 million will put the account over the $2 billion mark, State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt said.

"At this pace, the Legacy Fund is on schedule to receive $3 billion by the end of the 2013-15 biennium," or budget period, she said.

The fund has been growing faster than anticipated because of rising North Dakota oil production and high prices. State Mineral Resources Director Lynn Helms said this week that he expects April's oil production figures to be over 1 million barrels daily.

The State Investment Board invests the Legacy Fund money in a broad range of assets, including stocks, bonds and real estate.

North Dakota Oil Tax Fund About to Top $2 Billion - NewsOK



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          Dalrymple Promotes North Dakota Trade Mission, Exports in Talks with Canadian Ambassador Doer   
By ND Governor
Gov. Jack Dalrymple will meet in Bismarck late today with Gary Doer, Canada’s ambassador to the United States, to discuss plans for a North Dakota trade mission to Canada the week of June 9, A delegation of North Dakota exporters will travel to Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, Canada with the North Dakota Trade Office (NDTO).
 
“Canada is by far the largest buyer of North Dakota goods and services and it’s important that we continue to develop this important trade relationship,” Dalrymple said.  “The demand for North Dakota’s high-quality products and services continues to grow around the world. Sending a trade delegation to Canada is part of our ongoing work to expand North Dakota’s international business opportunities and further diversify state economy.”
 
For nearly 10 years, Gov. Jack Dalrymple and other state officials have worked to increase North Dakota’s presence in the global marketplace.  In 2005, the state created the NDTO to help North Dakota businesses market their products and services in high-demand markets throughout the world. Dalrymple, Sen. John Hoeven and the NDTO staff also successfully worked to get established in Fargo an office of the U.S. Commercial Service.  Together, the NDTO and U.S. Commercial Service are dedicated to expanding the state’s global business opportunities through advocacy, education and international business services.
 
Between 2005 and 2010, Dalrymple, who was then North Dakota’s lieutenant governor and the founding chairman of the NDTO board of directors, led successful trade missions to Cuba, China, Ukraine, South Korea and several other key markets for North Dakota businesses. The governor also led the development of the NDTO’s annual Big Iron International Visitors Program which hosts hundreds of agricultural equipment buyers from around the world in conjunction with the Big Iron Farm Show in West Fargo.
 
Lt. Gov. Drew Wrigley, who has served as the NDTO’s chairman since 2011, will lead the trade delegation to Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal, Canada in June. Wrigley has led several successful trade missions as well, with trips to China, Singapore and Kazakhstan.  The trade delegation will explore export opportunities and in-state investment opportunities involving the energy, aviation and unmanned aerial systems (UAS) industries. NDTO staff is currently developing the trade mission. All North Dakota businesses with export opportunities in Canada are invited to participate. For more information about the trade mission and export opportunities in Canada, contact the North Dakota Trade Office at (701) 231-1150 or go online to http://ndto.com/
 
Since 2005, North Dakota’s merchandise sales in foreign markets have increased 173 percent, from about $1.1 billion to about $3 billion.  Canada is by far North Dakota’s largest international buyer, accounting for more than 60 percent of North Dakota’s export sales. Other key markets for North Dakota exports include Mexico, Australia, Belgium, China, Germany and Japan.
 
The NDTO has coordinated 49 trade missions to key markets around the world and 20 reverse trade missions to North Dakota, bringing together North Dakota exporters and worldwide customers. NDTO staff also provides international business training and host the annual Global Business Conference which will be held April 29 and 30 in Fargo. The conference brings together North Dakota exporters and international business experts and includes an awards ceremony to recognize the state’s leading export businesses.
 

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          North Dakota is Leaving South Dakota in the Dust   
By Peter Coy, Business Week
North Dakota and South Dakota have been quiet rivals ever since Nov. 2, 1889, the day the Dakota Territory was split in two and they were admitted to the union as states. For most of the time since, South Dakota has been the big brother. Not only is it slightly larger, more populous, warmer, and more interesting—what with Mount Rushmore, the Black Hills, and the Badlands—but in recent years it has been richer, too.

North Dakota still lacks Mount Rushmore, but it has something even better: oil. As a result, the little brother is suddenly streaking ahead. In 2002, North Dakota’s per-capita output was 9 percent below South Dakota’s. By 2012, thanks largely to the boom in Bakken shale oil production, its per-capita output had gotten to be 28 percent higher. That’s not sitting well with everyone down south (south being a relative term). “Sure, there is some jealousy,” Derric Iles, South Dakota’s state geologist, told James MacPherson of the Associated Press two years ago. “We want a piece of the economic pie North Dakota has, plain and simple.”

North Dakota produces as much oil in two days as South Dakota produces in a year, according to the latest monthly data from the Energy Information Administration. The only hydrocarbon that South Dakota makes a lot of is ethanol, which comes from corn. South Dakota is also a leader in hydropower, which comes from the Missouri River, and wind, which seems to come from just about everywhere. All good, but no match for North Dakota’s shale.

To North Dakotans’ credit, they haven’t done a lot of crowing. Rather than splurging, petro-state style, the state has prudently been saving some of its oil and gas windfall in the North Dakota Legacy Fund, which has accumulated $1.8 billion since its 2011 launch. “Maybe someone goes to Bergdorf Goodman in New York to buy an Armani suit, but we don’t see it out and about,” John Stern of Straus Clothing in Fargo told Robin Huebner of Forum News Service this month. “It’s not really the North Dakota way.”

When the website FindTheBest.com put the two states up against each other in a totally unscientific popularity contest, South Dakota won, 55 percent to 45 percent. North Dakota is No. 2 in the nation in bee colonies, but South Dakota is No. 1 in pheasant production, according to a 2007 U.S. Agriculture Department report. North Dakota State’s football team crushed South Dakota and South Dakota State on the way to an undefeated season. But South Dakota has the Corn Palace. An so on.

The battle over bragging rights could go on forever. Still, there’s no denying that for the moment, South Dakota is eating North Dakota’s dust.

View the story on the Bloomberg Business Week Site. 

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          Land Board Awards $5 Million in Latest Grant Round to Law Enforcement Agencies   
By ND Governor
The Board of University and School Lands (Land Board) today awarded about $5 million in state grants to support sheriff offices and other local law enforcement agencies in North Dakota’s oil-production region.  The Land Board also awarded about $100,000 in grant funds to law enforcement agencies that are serving growing populations throughout the state.

Since July, the Land Board has awarded about $15.3 million to support local law enforcement agencies in western North Dakota. The funding is part of a $240-million state grant program created during the last Legislative session to help address the impacts of rapid growth in western North Dakota.

“These law enforcement funds concentrate on meeting immediate safety needs by putting peace officers on the road, appropriately trained, properly equipped and affordably housed,” Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem said. “I am confident we will be able to show legislators that these critical funds have been wisely invested and are already showing results in investigating criminal activity and prosecuting criminals.”

Gov. Jack Dalrymple is chairman of the five-member Land Board. Other board members are Stenehjem, Secretary of State Al Jaeger, Superintendent of Public Instruction Kirsten Baesler and State Treasurer Kelly Schmidt. The Land Board voted unanimously in favor of awarding the law enforcement grants.

“These grants are part of a larger strategy to help our local officials and community leaders address the challenges that come with growth,” Dalrymple said. “With the Energy Impact Fund, we can tackle a wide range of challenges. We continue to make significant progress, but we recognize that the impacts from rapid growth are very dynamic and we must always be prepared to adapt our response to meet the region’s needs.”

The law enforcement grants approved by the Land Board today will support sheriff offices, police departments, states attorney offices and regional law enforcement task forces. The state funding will also support domestic violence assistance programs, family crisis assistance and child advocacy. The grants will help pay for patrol vehicles; mobile fingerprint scans that provide immediate identification; portable scales for weight enforcement; funding for housing allowances; funding to hire additional officers, victim advocates and other public safety personnel as well as training, police safety gear and other equipment. For a complete list of law enforcement grants approved today by the Land Board go to www.nd.gov/energyimpact

State funding appropriated to support the region’s law enforcement agencies and other emergency responders during the 2013-2015 biennium includes:
• $9.6 million for Attorney General grants to law enforcement agencies.
• $7 million in Energy Impact Grant funds for sheriffs’ departments.
• $7 million for emergency medical service providers.
• $3.5 million for fire protection districts.
• $9.6 million for critical access hospitals.

In all, the state will invest about $2.6 billion to support the state’s oil and gas region during the 2013-2015 biennium.  The state’s 2013-2015 commitment – more than twice the amount of the previous, two-year funding package of about $1.2 billion – is being used to address a wide range of needs in western North Dakota, including:  highway, county and township road improvements; water supply and water treatment projects; the development of low-to-moderate income housing and assistance for growing school districts. Other state commitments include stationing more Highway Patrol troopers in western North Dakota; enhancements to the region’s court system and funding for dust suppression projects.

 

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          Inside One Of The FAA's New Drone Test Sites   
By Kelsey Atherton, Popular Science
Earlier this week, flying barely under the wire of its 2013 deadline, the Federal Aviation Administration announced the six states it had selected as test sites for domestic drone use. The goal is to figure out how unmanned aerial vehicles can safely work in U.S. skies alongside commercial planes, news and police helicopters, cropdusters, and the whole range of peopled flying machines. Twenty-four states applied, eager to lead the country in developing commercial uses for drones and grab a slice of what the Association for Unmanned Vehicles Systems International predicts will be an $82 billion industry by 2025.

The winning candidates were Alaska, Virginia, New York, Texas, Nevada, and North Dakota. Prior to test site selection, the FAA authorized over 300 much smaller test sites for drones, most of which were universities and small police departments. The FAA program is set to conclude in February 2017.

In November, I went to one of these test sites in Grand Forks, North Dakota, to see what exactly the future of domestic flying robots might look like. Full disclosure: The North Dakota Department of Commerce paid for my trip.

When I, along with four other journalists, traveled to the Roughrider State, I found a community united in avoiding the word "drone." The officials I spoke with refer to their flying machines as "unmanned aircraft." That's what the FAA is calling them, while at nearby Grand Forks Air Force Base the term is "remotely piloted vehicle."

"Unmanned is unequivocally the future of aviation," 69th Reconnaissance Group Commander Colonel Lawrence Spinetta said, speaking at Grand Forks Air Force Base. It's not just the military that has adopted this attitude. In 2010, the University of North Dakota, which has a long history in training airplane and helicopter pilots, created the nation's first civilian degree program in piloting drones. The FAA granted the University of North Dakota a special certificate that allows the school to fly unmanned vehicles.

The FAA authorized the Grand Forks County Sheriff's Department to use drones for law enforcement missions in March 2013. Canadian dronemaker Draganflyer and California drone company AeroVironment have both partnered with the sheriff's department to test their small drones. In May, the department used a drone during a police mission for the first time.

In Seattle, a plan for police to use drones was scuttled by the mayor before it had even taken off, following outcry and protest by privacy advocates. I asked North Dakota Lieutenant Governor Drew Wrigley why that didn't happen in Grand Forks. "We don't have that many Black Helicopters types," he said, before quickly clarifying, "There's a lot of trust in institutions here." He mentioned the state's status as the best-run in the nation, according to financial news company 27/7 Wall Street. Of course, not everyone in North Dakota would agree with Wrigley. Driving back from a tour of Grand Forks Air Force Base, we passed a home with "Libertarian: Less Government, More Freedom" painted on the side.

In an effort to gain community support for drone use, the University of North Dakota created the Unmanned Aerial Systems Research Compliance Committee, an academic ethics assembly that reviews and approves proposals for drone use. The committee's meetings are open to the public. I spoke with committee members Barry Milavetz and Thomasine Heitkamp about the project. Milavetz has a background in medicine; Heitkamp in social work. While neither comes from law enforcement or aviation, they both have extensive experience in the ethics of academic research.

The keys to a successful drone program are community standards, feedback, and public notification, Heitkamp and Milavetz told me. These standards, adopted voluntarily by the University of North Dakota and accepted by the sheriff's department, may have influenced the FAA's drone roadmap, which issued privacy guidelines that seem to be based on the committee's work.

One example of the committee's influence is the sign pictured at the top of this page, which informs people driving by that a police drone is in use. Another example comes from a major concert, which prompted a tremendous influx of traffic into Grand Forks. The city, with a population of 53,000, expected thousands more visitors, and the sheriff's department wanted to use drones to better manage the traffic. The public safety benefit was there--it's easier to spot and resolve traffic problems from above. But flying cameras can make people uneasy. Heitkamp and Milavetz both discussed the challenge of data retention: what happens to the video recorded by the drone? Is it stored indefinitely, and if so, by whom, and who can gain access to it? In the case of the concert, the committee tried to balance the safety benefits and privacy concerns by allowing the drones to stream live video, but not record it for future use. And they were only allowed to film cars, which matter for traffic snarls, and not people, which largely don't.

If all this sounds pretty mundane for a future of flying robots, that's because it is. The essential part of making drones work in Grand Forks, at least according to the officials I spoke with, seemed to be trustthe sheriff's department voluntarily adopted the university's standards; the university took their role as researchers and community stewards seriously; and the research compliance committee sought public input on all decisions about drone use.

Now that the FAA has selected North Dakota as a test site, the state will begin rolling out programs that have already been implemented on a small scale in Grand Forks. By participating in the FAA's research project, North Dakota, Alaska, Virginia, Nevada, Texas, and New York all stand to benefit from an economic windfall, with new industry and jobs springing up around domestic drones. For now, though, the future of unmanned aircraft is still in beta.

View "Inside One Of The FAA's New Drone Test Sites" at popsci.com

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          thoughts on canada 150   
It's Canada Day, this year dubbed Canada 150, with its own corporate brand and a carefully worded story of that number 150. We also have Canada 150+, which acknowledges that human cultures and societies have been living in what is now Canada for thousands of years.

I have mixed feelings about Canada Day.

First, I despise nationalism of all kinds, including the kind called patriotism. I used to make a distinction between the two (something I learned from my mother), but have come to feel that it is all the same: I am better than you because I live on this piece of land and you don't. In Canada, patriotism mostly translates into complacency, as if "we're much better than our neighbours to the south!" is good enough.

But more importantly, when it comes to Canada 150, are indigenous people. The very concept of Canada 150 excludes and erases the original inhabitants of this land. From an indigenous point of view, Canada 150 marks the beginning of colonialism, occupation, extermination.

This would be bad enough, if the horrors weren't still being lived right here, right now. A country that spends $500,000,000 celebrating itself should be able to bring clean water to everyone who lives here.* The Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women issue should be wrapped up by now, a shameful piece of history, not an ongoing battle. Governments should be thanking indigenous leadership on the environmental front, and trying to reverse the damage done to indigenous land and water by extraction industries.

Most of my leftist comrades eschew Canada Day for this reason, and are disgusted by Canada 150.

I agree. And yet... I have another perspective, too.

I love Canada in many ways. I am grateful that I was able to come here and begin my life anew. I love that Canada was an early adopter of equal marriage, and now leads the way in the rights of transpeople. I love Canada's public health care (and wish there was a whole lot more of it). I love that women (mostly) have full control over our reproductive lives. I love the multiculturalism, and the strong reaction when that value is transgressed. Of course there is racism here -- which only means Canadians are human beings -- but the kind of virulence and violence seen every day in the US would never be tolerated here on a large scale.

The indigenous perspective is big news here -- emphasized in the mainstream media and acknowledged by the top level of government. Many countries all over the world refuse to even acknowledge a colonial or genocidal past. Words without action are meaningless, but no action can begin without that acknowledgement; while words alone are insufficient, they are still significant.

I have spent most of my life opposing state power, and there's plenty to work on here, on every front -- peace, environment, labour, health care, gender equity. None of it is good enough. But if we widen the lens to view Canada globally, it's one of the best places to live on the planet. There's a lot I would change and fix, but if we could magically give everyone on the planet the quality of life enjoyed by most Canadians, it would be a vast improvement. (Of course, the planet would collapse, because its resources would be instantly depleted. But we're only talking metaphor here.)

Canada is far from perfect -- and Canadians know that, acknowledge it, and strive for better. Which in turn is part of why I love it here.

Canada 150 doesn't mean a lot to me. But there's no way around it. I love Canada. That's why I'll never stop criticizing it.



* To be fair, most of that money went to repairing and renovating infrastructure that will should last well beyond the July 1, 2017 party. Perhaps that highlights the issue even more starkly!



          Elon Musk’s new firm to merge human brain with machines   
Elon Musk’s new firm to merge human brain with machines

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk has founded another tech firm called Neuralink, which aims to create a much more sophisticated artificial intelligence by linking human brains with computers.

Neuralink will focus on using the neural lace technology where humans and machines will be able to interact with each other without using any physical interface.

The so-called neural lace technology works through implantation of electrodes into the brain, which allows people to communicate with machines. Such a blend will allow people to upload as well as download their thoughts as well. It will also improve humans’ cognitive skills in addition to their memory.

Mr. Musk’s SpaceX is meanwhile working on an ambitious plan to take humans to Mars. The new technology would likely be of great help in achieving that goal.

Philip Rhoades, who founded a body-freezing cryonics lab & a brain preserving firm called the Neural Archives Foundation, said, “I am convinced that I need to become a virtual person (via mind uploading) sooner rather than later … I don’t care if your average Facebook user thinks it’s all crazy...”

Electrode implants in the human brain are already used in several people diagnosed with neurological disorders like epilepsy and Parkinson’s. However, these implants aren’t as complex as Mr. Musk envisions them to be.

Companies: 
General: 
People: 

          Fruit Heights, UTAH Reason #26 Why Kroger, the Biggest Supermarket in the USA (www.kroger.com/onlineshopping), is Alligning with Pigeonship.com to Deliver Groceries for Neighborhood Smiths Food-and-Drug Store Customers in Utah   

Fruit Heights, UT -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/30/2017 -- CONTACT:
Jared Overton
PigeonShip
(801) 369-5354

Marsha Gilford
Smith's Food & Drug
(801) 973-1700

Mike Dale
New Media Strategists
(801) 550-5850

SMITH'S LAUNCHES GROCERY HOME DELIVERY SERVICE
Locally- based PigeonShip Selected as Delivery Partner

Smith's Food & Drug Stores has launched grocery delivery to customers' homes using PigeonShip, a Utah-based delivery service provider.

Utilizing Smith's online grocery ordering service, ClickList, which offers more than 40,000 items from desktop or mobile devices, customers may now also choose home delivery by PigeonShip as an option to curbside store pick up in two test market areas. The grocery delivery service will begin on June 15 from Smith's Marketplace in Saratoga Springs and on June 29 from Smith's Marketplace in Springville.

PigeonShip is a dynamic hyper-local same day delivery service, focusing on quality control and customer satisfaction, but with enormous flexibility and reach to accommodate both business and consumer demands. Although locally founded, PigeonShip's unique model is built for scale and can be operational in any State.

"Smith's ClickList store pickup has been a huge hit with our customers for its convenience and now the home delivery service brings that convenience factor to a whole new level," said Marsha Gilford, Southwest Regional Director, Corporate Affairs.

How does home grocery delivery work? A customer goes to http://www.smithsfoodanddrug.com/ClickList and selects grocery items to build their shopping cart. Once the customer has completed their online shopping list, they choose a convenient home delivery time. Customers may use the same day pick-up at the store or choose the home delivery option with the same four-hour window. Home delivery is $11.95 for each trip, with no minimum or maximum order required. The customer will track their groceries en route through an app or email link and will know the precise time the order will arrive. The driver will then carry the groceries to the door.

PigeonShip was founded in Utah, but operates in other States. Their ability to have items delivered same day and on demand has made it very popular amongst business verticals such as groceries, payroll, legal documents, floral, pharmaceuticals, classifieds, and any other business whose products need same day delivery. PigeonShip utilizes "already going there" drivers wanting to make some extra income, and connects senders who are looking for a fast, cheap and reliable delivery service. PigeonShip is the first pickup and delivery service that offers faster, smarter and hassle-free item or package delivery. Visit https://www.pigeonship.com or https://www.facebook.com/PigeonShip

Smith's Food & Drug Stores operates 140 stores in seven western states including 53 stores in Utah. Smith's charitable giving, in partnership with 18,000 associates, generous customers and suppliers, totaled $5.7 million in cash and food products to Utah organizations in 2016. Visit www.smithsfoodanddrug.com for more information.

BREAKING NEWS: Small meets Big: The Kroger Company chooses PigeonShip as delivery provider.

Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™ https://www.facebook.com/PigeonShip

Nothing epitomizes the catchphrase small meets big more than the new partnership between PigeonShip Delivery and The Kroger Company. By revenue, Kroger is the largest supermarket chain in the United States.

On May 30th 2017, the $115.34 billion dollar grocery giant signed an agreement to have PigeonShip deliver groceries to customers; PigeonShip's unique white-glove on demand delivery service is exactly what Kroger wants.  Smith's Food and Drug, one of Krogers many owned grocery store chains, will be first to experience the delivery service in Utah.

Kroger has made the grocery ordering process simple by providing their ClickList grocery ordering platform, now available for Smith's customers.  Clicklist allows an individual to order groceries online and schedule a time to pick up the order.  Delivery will now be an option.  PigeonShip will deliver those orders.

The grocery delivery service will begin June 15th and June 30th at the new Smith's Marketplace in Saratoga Springs, Utah and Springville, Utah respectively. PigeonShip is a highly efficient delivery service, focusing on quality control and customer satisfaction, but with enormous flexibility and reach to accommodate consumer demands.

https://www.pigeonship.com/#about

PigeonShip®™ is a crowed-sourced local pick-up and delivery services. In other words, local hard working citizens of Utah are now able to earn extra income while driving their cars to and from work. PigeonShip®™ has the unique ability to connect these local commuters with local-items needing to be delivered along their already existing route. https://www.pigeonship.com/contactus

PigeonShip was founded by Utah native Jared Overton. The technology instantly fills a great need currently missing in shipping services. Ship anything that fits in a car. Don't box it up. Just hand it over and a Pigeon will do the rest. Pigeons are simply people headed in that same direction, usually going to work or running errands. PigeonShip.com connects you instantly. The Sender saves money and time and the Pigeon makes a little extra going to and from work, school, or whatever. Avoid The Trip, PigeonShip.

Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™

Welcome to PigeonShip®™! PigeonShip.com is a solution to an age-old problem: Time Management. PigeonShip®™ is a new concept to that meets valuable need. Our concept brings local people together and provides convenience benefits. Our friendly couriers are willing to pick up and deliver your item. We call them "Pigeons." It may sound like a run-of-the-mill "courier" or "delivery service" for packages and parcels; but don't be fooled! Our professional Pigeons typically have careers and jobs outside of PigeonShip®™. These Pigeons simply pick up and drop off items while commuting or running errands. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™. https://twitter.com/PigeonShip

PigeonShip is, and always will be the innovator of crowed-sourced pick-up and delivery services. Originally founded in 2012, Founder Jared Overton spent nearly two years refining the technology and platform to help revolutionize the shipping industry. https://www.pigeonship.com/contactus

Locals are using PigeonShip®™ for every-day things, such as; picking up dry cleaning, groceries, take-out, and more. The service also comes in handy when you forget something and don't want to return to pick it up. Using PigeonShip®™ for classifieds has become popular. No more driving long distances to pick-up a classified service. Users of the service love the idea of not having to package things up. They simply had it over to the appointed Pigeon and wait until it's delivered.

Fruit Heights, UTAH Reason #26 Why Kroger, the Biggest Supermarket in the USA (http://www.kroger.com/onlineshopping), is Alligning with Pigeonship.com to Deliver Groceries for Neighborhood Smiths Food-and-Drug Store Customers in Utah

We eat, breathe and almost sleep logistics and deliveries because we know that by mastering what we do we make life easier for you. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

As a Sender, it is extremely important to follow the guidelines-and-protocols. PigeonShip®™ has created strict guidelines and well-defined protocols in order to increase user-satisfaction. A Sender that follows and meets these guidelines and protocols will insure proper pick-up and delivery of an item, increases their positive feedback rating, and ultimately result in significant savings and convenience for everyone. TIP: Snap a picture of your items prior to Pigeon pick up. The Pigeon will also take a snap shot. In the event of any confusion, your item-picture can easily be used to resolve any unforeseen issue. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

To send an item, simply login to the PigeonShip®™ App or visit http://www.PigeonShip.com and click PigeonShip®™

Step 1: Enter the pick-up and drop-off addresses.
Step 2: Agree to, or adjust, the suggested-price.
Step 3: Click the box that best represents the size of your item.
Step 4: Choose the 'deliver by' day and PigeonShip®™ away!

Your payment-information can be securely-saved for future use. It's always a good idea to make the pick-up and drop-off process simple and convenient for the Pigeon. Pigeons are commuting to-and-from work and have a small-window available to pick-up an item. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

You get to work at the other end of the city, on a busy morning, and you realize that you forgot your laptop (your work computer) at home. Not a very good way to start the day. Will you drive those 20 traffic-congested miles each way again just to get your laptop? What will you spent on gas, not to mention your time, to get that laptop?

PigeonShip is the brilliant solution to this not so unique problem. PigeonShip connects senders who are looking for a fast, cheap and reliable delivery service, with Pigeons who want to make a little cash on their drive. We are the first pickup and delivery service that offers faster, smarter and hassle-free item or package delivery; Any size and at any time.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

Pigeons and Senders are everyday people just like you! If you have ever needed a delivery-service, then you'd fit right in with our Senders. If you are driving a car with extra-space, and want to earn extra income, become a Pigeon and deliver items that are already headed in the same direction of your daily-commute! Pigeonship.com connects Senders who are looking for a fast, cheap, and reliable delivery-service, with Pigeons who want to make a little cash. We are the first "courier service" that offers faster, smarter, and hassle-free delivery of any item: ANY-SIZE; ANY-TIME. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

'Items' are 'Sent' with us - NOT packages and parcels. PigeonShip®™ does NOT require packaging like the typical postal services do. For this reason, people are flocking to use our service!

Our Pigeon-Flock consists of teachers, contractors, students, assistants, lawyers and more. Mom's drop-off their kids at school, pick-up and drop-off items on their way home and make extra money. You can be a Pigeon too, just sign up! I invite you to support PigeonShip®™ and our local Pigeons. Meanwhile, enjoy the convenience and save a bundle of money utilizing the empty space in vehicles. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

Our current PigeonFlock consists of teachers, contractors, students, assistants, lawyers, programmers and more. Moms drop off their kids at school and pick up and deliver items on their way back home, making extra money. You can be a Pigeon too, just Sign Up. I invite you to support PigeonShip and our Local Pigeons. Meanwhile, enjoy the convenience and save a bundle of money utilizing empty space in vehicles. Nowadays interactions may seem fleeting; impersonal. Remember when nothing beat the comfort of a good neighbor? PigeonShip®™ has re-created that relationship. Our goal is to build a cheaper, faster and friendlier way to get your stuff to where it needs to go.

https://www.pigeonship.com/#about

We are the first neighbor-to-neighbor shipping-network. PigeonShip®™ delivers local; same-day, next-day and on weekends. We help the environment since our drivers are already traveling a certain direction. What makes us different is that the Pigeons do NOT work for us; they work for you! They are your neighbors; driving on the same streets you do.

https://www.pigeonship.com/faqs/
https://www.pigeonship.com/help

Kroger - Smith's Marketplace and PigeonShip Delivery
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8iMzaeQAGI

PigeonShip is a smarter way to send, pick up, or ship items. Get anything white-glove delivered to your doorstep for a minimal delivery price by a Pigeon- a qualified person traveling the same route on a daily basis. Now get that laptop delivered much cheaper and faster than any other shipping service. PigeonShip makes your daily delivery needs as easy as it sounds. The concept brings local people together and provides benefits for everyone.

Our friendly couriers are willing to pick up and deliver items. It may sound like a courier or delivery service for just packages and parcels, but don't be fooled. You can PigeonShip unboxed and unwrapped items, like golf clubs, a surf board or a wedding cake. Our Pigeons typically have careers and jobs outside of PigeonShip™. These Pigeons simply pick up and deliver items while commuting or running errands. Notice I said 'items', and not just packages and parcels. PigeonShip™ does not require packaging like the typical postal services do. For this reason, people are flocking to use the service. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

PigeonShip has created a market that has never existed, such as same day delivery, evening delivery, weekend delivery, and holiday delivery. The innovation now also allows your favorite restaurant to now deliver, with PigeonShip!

Every day millions of people are commuting, traveling, or running errands. Ironically millions of items and packages are needing to go in that very same direction. PigeonShip has capitalized on the empty space in so many vehicles. It helps people needing stuff delivered with all those vehicles already going. The PigeonShip Classifieds platform is a breakthrough in and of itself. This service allows buyers and sellers to use PigeonShip as the middle man; payment processing and also delivery. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

Don't be surprised if get a notification-of-acceptance from Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™within minutes (via SMS and Email). Time is money. Upon receiving a notification that your item was accepted, you will be contacted by a Pigeon. Your contact information, and the Pigeons, will be electronically exchanged via SMS. Feel free to reach out to your dependable Pigeon to coordinate pick-up. You will also receive an immediate email with the Pigeon's profile information when item has been accepted. It is recommended that you meet the Pigeon at a public location for a quick and easy transaction. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

About PigeonShip
PigeonShip is, and always will be the innovator of crowedsourced pick up and delivery services. Originally founded in 2012, Founder Jared Overton spent nearly two years refining the technology and platform to help revolutionalize the shipping industry

PigeonShip has created a market that has never existed, such as same day delivery, evening delivery, weekend delivery, and holiday delivery. The innovation now also allows your favorite restaurant to now deliver, with PigeonShip.

Every day millions of people are commuting, traveling, or running errands. Ironically millions of items and packages are needing to go in that very same direction. PigeonShip has capitalized on the empty space in so many vehicles. It helps people needing stuff delivered with all those vehicles already going.

The PigeonShip Classifieds platform is a break through in and of itself. This service allows buyers and sellers to use PigeonShip as the middle man; payment processing and also delivery.

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.sbwire.com/press-releases/fruit-heights-utah-reason-26-why-kroger-the-biggest-supermarket-in-the-usa-wwwkrogercomonlineshopping-is-alligning-with-pigeonshipcom-to-deliver-groceries-for-neighborhood-smiths-food-and-drug-store-customers-in-utah-827067.htm

Media Relations Contact

Adam Green
PigeonShip
Telephone: 801-809-7766
Email: Click to Email Adam Green
Web: https://www.pigeonship.com/


          Fillmore, UTAH Reason #25 Why Kroger, the Largest Supermarket in the USA (www.kroger.com/onlineshopping), is Alligning with Pigeonship.com to Deliver Groceries for Local Smiths Food and Drug Store Customers in Utah   

Fillmore, UT -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/30/2017 -- CONTACT:
Jared Overton
PigeonShip
(801) 369-5354

Marsha Gilford
Smith's Food & Drug
(801) 973-1700

Mike Dale
New Media Strategists
(801) 550-5850

SMITH'S LAUNCHES GROCERY HOME DELIVERY SERVICE
Locally- based PigeonShip Selected as Delivery Partner

Smith's Food & Drug Stores has launched grocery delivery to customers' homes using PigeonShip, a Utah-based delivery service provider.

Utilizing Smith's online grocery ordering service, ClickList, which offers more than 40,000 items from desktop or mobile devices, customers may now also choose home delivery by PigeonShip as an option to curbside store pick up in two test market areas. The grocery delivery service will begin on June 15 from Smith's Marketplace in Saratoga Springs and on June 29 from Smith's Marketplace in Springville.

PigeonShip is a dynamic hyper-local same day delivery service, focusing on quality control and customer satisfaction, but with enormous flexibility and reach to accommodate both business and consumer demands. Although locally founded, PigeonShip's unique model is built for scale and can be operational in any State.

"Smith's ClickList store pickup has been a huge hit with our customers for its convenience and now the home delivery service brings that convenience factor to a whole new level," said Marsha Gilford, Southwest Regional Director, Corporate Affairs.

How does home grocery delivery work? A customer goes to http://www.smithsfoodanddrug.com/ClickList and selects grocery items to build their shopping cart. Once the customer has completed their online shopping list, they choose a convenient home delivery time. Customers may use the same day pick-up at the store or choose the home delivery option with the same four-hour window. Home delivery is $11.95 for each trip, with no minimum or maximum order required. The customer will track their groceries en route through an app or email link and will know the precise time the order will arrive. The driver will then carry the groceries to the door.

PigeonShip was founded in Utah, but operates in other States. Their ability to have items delivered same day and on demand has made it very popular amongst business verticals such as groceries, payroll, legal documents, floral, pharmaceuticals, classifieds, and any other business whose products need same day delivery. PigeonShip utilizes "already going there" drivers wanting to make some extra income, and connects senders who are looking for a fast, cheap and reliable delivery service. PigeonShip is the first pickup and delivery service that offers faster, smarter and hassle-free item or package delivery. Visit https://www.pigeonship.com or https://www.facebook.com/PigeonShip

Smith's Food & Drug Stores operates 140 stores in seven western states including 53 stores in Utah. Smith's charitable giving, in partnership with 18,000 associates, generous customers and suppliers, totaled $5.7 million in cash and food products to Utah organizations in 2016. Visit www.smithsfoodanddrug.com for more information.

Fillmore, UTAH Reason #25 Why Kroger, the Largest Supermarket in the USA (http://www.kroger.com/onlineshopping), is Alligning with Pigeonship.com to Deliver Groceries for Local Smiths Food and Drug Store Customers in Utah

Our current PigeonFlock consists of teachers, contractors, students, assistants, lawyers, programmers and more. Moms drop off their kids at school and pick up and deliver items on their way back home, making extra money. You can be a Pigeon too, just Sign Up. I invite you to support PigeonShip and our Local Pigeons. Meanwhile, enjoy the convenience and save a bundle of money utilizing empty space in vehicles. Nowadays interactions may seem fleeting; impersonal. Remember when nothing beat the comfort of a good neighbor? PigeonShip®™ has re-created that relationship. Our goal is to build a cheaper, faster and friendlier way to get your stuff to where it needs to go.

https://www.pigeonship.com/#about

We are the first neighbor-to-neighbor shipping-network. PigeonShip®™ delivers local; same-day, next-day and on weekends. We help the environment since our drivers are already traveling a certain direction. What makes us different is that the Pigeons do NOT work for us; they work for you! They are your neighbors; driving on the same streets you do.

https://www.pigeonship.com/faqs/
https://www.pigeonship.com/help

Kroger - Smith's Marketplace and PigeonShip Delivery
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8iMzaeQAGI

BREAKING NEWS: Small meets Big: The Kroger Company chooses PigeonShip as delivery provider.

Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™ https://www.facebook.com/PigeonShip

Nothing epitomizes the catchphrase small meets big more than the new partnership between PigeonShip Delivery and The Kroger Company. By revenue, Kroger is the largest supermarket chain in the United States.

On May 30th 2017, the $115.34 billion dollar grocery giant signed an agreement to have PigeonShip deliver groceries to customers; PigeonShip's unique white-glove on demand delivery service is exactly what Kroger wants.  Smith's Food and Drug, one of Krogers many owned grocery store chains, will be first to experience the delivery service in Utah.

Kroger has made the grocery ordering process simple by providing their ClickList grocery ordering platform, now available for Smith's customers.  Clicklist allows an individual to order groceries online and schedule a time to pick up the order.  Delivery will now be an option.  PigeonShip will deliver those orders.

The grocery delivery service will begin June 15th and June 30th at the new Smith's Marketplace in Saratoga Springs, Utah and Springville, Utah respectively. PigeonShip is a highly efficient delivery service, focusing on quality control and customer satisfaction, but with enormous flexibility and reach to accommodate consumer demands.

https://www.pigeonship.com/#about

PigeonShip®™ is a crowed-sourced local pick-up and delivery services. In other words, local hard working citizens of Utah are now able to earn extra income while driving their cars to and from work. PigeonShip®™ has the unique ability to connect these local commuters with local-items needing to be delivered along their already existing route. https://www.pigeonship.com/contactus

PigeonShip was founded by Utah native Jared Overton. The technology instantly fills a great need currently missing in shipping services. Ship anything that fits in a car. Don't box it up. Just hand it over and a Pigeon will do the rest. Pigeons are simply people headed in that same direction, usually going to work or running errands. PigeonShip.com connects you instantly. The Sender saves money and time and the Pigeon makes a little extra going to and from work, school, or whatever. Avoid The Trip, PigeonShip.

Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™

Welcome to PigeonShip®™! PigeonShip.com is a solution to an age-old problem: Time Management. PigeonShip®™ is a new concept to that meets valuable need. Our concept brings local people together and provides convenience benefits. Our friendly couriers are willing to pick up and deliver your item. We call them "Pigeons." It may sound like a run-of-the-mill "courier" or "delivery service" for packages and parcels; but don't be fooled! Our professional Pigeons typically have careers and jobs outside of PigeonShip®™. These Pigeons simply pick up and drop off items while commuting or running errands. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™. https://twitter.com/PigeonShip

PigeonShip is, and always will be the innovator of crowed-sourced pick-up and delivery services. Originally founded in 2012, Founder Jared Overton spent nearly two years refining the technology and platform to help revolutionize the shipping industry. https://www.pigeonship.com/contactus

Locals are using PigeonShip®™ for every-day things, such as; picking up dry cleaning, groceries, take-out, and more. The service also comes in handy when you forget something and don't want to return to pick it up. Using PigeonShip®™ for classifieds has become popular. No more driving long distances to pick-up a classified service. Users of the service love the idea of not having to package things up. They simply had it over to the appointed Pigeon and wait until it's delivered.

You get to work at the other end of the city, on a busy morning, and you realize that you forgot your laptop (your work computer) at home. Not a very good way to start the day. Will you drive those 20 traffic-congested miles each way again just to get your laptop? What will you spent on gas, not to mention your time, to get that laptop?

PigeonShip is the brilliant solution to this not so unique problem. PigeonShip connects senders who are looking for a fast, cheap and reliable delivery service, with Pigeons who want to make a little cash on their drive. We are the first pickup and delivery service that offers faster, smarter and hassle-free item or package delivery; Any size and at any time.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

Pigeons and Senders are everyday people just like you! If you have ever needed a delivery-service, then you'd fit right in with our Senders. If you are driving a car with extra-space, and want to earn extra income, become a Pigeon and deliver items that are already headed in the same direction of your daily-commute! Pigeonship.com connects Senders who are looking for a fast, cheap, and reliable delivery-service, with Pigeons who want to make a little cash. We are the first "courier service" that offers faster, smarter, and hassle-free delivery of any item: ANY-SIZE; ANY-TIME. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

'Items' are 'Sent' with us - NOT packages and parcels. PigeonShip®™ does NOT require packaging like the typical postal services do. For this reason, people are flocking to use our service!

Our Pigeon-Flock consists of teachers, contractors, students, assistants, lawyers and more. Mom's drop-off their kids at school, pick-up and drop-off items on their way home and make extra money. You can be a Pigeon too, just sign up! I invite you to support PigeonShip®™ and our local Pigeons. Meanwhile, enjoy the convenience and save a bundle of money utilizing the empty space in vehicles. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

PigeonShip is a smarter way to send, pick up, or ship items. Get anything white-glove delivered to your doorstep for a minimal delivery price by a Pigeon- a qualified person traveling the same route on a daily basis. Now get that laptop delivered much cheaper and faster than any other shipping service. PigeonShip makes your daily delivery needs as easy as it sounds. The concept brings local people together and provides benefits for everyone.

Our friendly couriers are willing to pick up and deliver items. It may sound like a courier or delivery service for just packages and parcels, but don't be fooled. You can PigeonShip unboxed and unwrapped items, like golf clubs, a surf board or a wedding cake. Our Pigeons typically have careers and jobs outside of PigeonShip™. These Pigeons simply pick up and deliver items while commuting or running errands. Notice I said 'items', and not just packages and parcels. PigeonShip™ does not require packaging like the typical postal services do. For this reason, people are flocking to use the service. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

PigeonShip has created a market that has never existed, such as same day delivery, evening delivery, weekend delivery, and holiday delivery. The innovation now also allows your favorite restaurant to now deliver, with PigeonShip!

Every day millions of people are commuting, traveling, or running errands. Ironically millions of items and packages are needing to go in that very same direction. PigeonShip has capitalized on the empty space in so many vehicles. It helps people needing stuff delivered with all those vehicles already going. The PigeonShip Classifieds platform is a breakthrough in and of itself. This service allows buyers and sellers to use PigeonShip as the middle man; payment processing and also delivery. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

Don't be surprised if get a notification-of-acceptance from Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™within minutes (via SMS and Email). Time is money. Upon receiving a notification that your item was accepted, you will be contacted by a Pigeon. Your contact information, and the Pigeons, will be electronically exchanged via SMS. Feel free to reach out to your dependable Pigeon to coordinate pick-up. You will also receive an immediate email with the Pigeon's profile information when item has been accepted. It is recommended that you meet the Pigeon at a public location for a quick and easy transaction. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

We eat, breathe and almost sleep logistics and deliveries because we know that by mastering what we do we make life easier for you. https://www.pigeonship.com/#get-in-touch

As a Sender, it is extremely important to follow the guidelines-and-protocols. PigeonShip®™ has created strict guidelines and well-defined protocols in order to increase user-satisfaction. A Sender that follows and meets these guidelines and protocols will insure proper pick-up and delivery of an item, increases their positive feedback rating, and ultimately result in significant savings and convenience for everyone. TIP: Snap a picture of your items prior to Pigeon pick up. The Pigeon will also take a snap shot. In the event of any confusion, your item-picture can easily be used to resolve any unforeseen issue. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

https://www.pigeonship.com/about-us/

To send an item, simply login to the PigeonShip®™ App or visit http://www.PigeonShip.com and click PigeonShip®™

Step 1: Enter the pick-up and drop-off addresses.
Step 2: Agree to, or adjust, the suggested-price.
Step 3: Click the box that best represents the size of your item.
Step 4: Choose the 'deliver by' day and PigeonShip®™ away!

Your payment-information can be securely-saved for future use. It's always a good idea to make the pick-up and drop-off process simple and convenient for the Pigeon. Pigeons are commuting to-and-from work and have a small-window available to pick-up an item. Avoid the Trip, PigeonShip®™.

About PigeonShip
PigeonShip is, and always will be the innovator of crowedsourced pick up and delivery services. Originally founded in 2012, Founder Jared Overton spent nearly two years refining the technology and platform to help revolutionalize the shipping industry

PigeonShip has created a market that has never existed, such as same day delivery, evening delivery, weekend delivery, and holiday delivery. The innovation now also allows your favorite restaurant to now deliver, with PigeonShip.

Every day millions of people are commuting, traveling, or running errands. Ironically millions of items and packages are needing to go in that very same direction. PigeonShip has capitalized on the empty space in so many vehicles. It helps people needing stuff delivered with all those vehicles already going.

The PigeonShip Classifieds platform is a break through in and of itself. This service allows buyers and sellers to use PigeonShip as the middle man; payment processing and also delivery.

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.sbwire.com/press-releases/fillmore-utah-reason-25-why-kroger-the-largest-supermarket-in-the-usa-wwwkrogercomonlineshopping-is-alligning-with-pigeonshipcom-to-deliver-groceries-for-local-smiths-food-and-drug-store-customers-in-utah-827064.htm

Media Relations Contact

Adam Green
PigeonShip
Telephone: 801-809-7766
Email: Click to Email Adam Green
Web: https://www.pigeonship.com


          July 27th: Kilmarnock - A Town That Refuses To Lie Down And Die   


20,000 people marched through Kilmarnock yesterday in protest at Diageo's plans to shut down the Johnny Walker whisky plant there and lay off 700 workers. The people of Kilmarnock were joined on the march by First Minister Alex Salmond, the entire first team of Kilmarnock FC (plus manager), bands like Hue and Cry, and even the Scottish Tory leader Annabel Goldie.

Len McCluskey of UNITE trade union hit the nail on the head when he told the rally that: "People power and organised labour can change it, and we intend to change it. Let's be absolutely crystal clear right from the outset – this decision is borne out of greed, nothing else. This is a company that made £2.2 billion profit last year and has already declared half-yearly profits of £1.6bn."

The message to the multinational drinks conglomerate was loud and clear: dinnae mess with our jobs, dinnae mess with our whisky industry. The message to other workforces whose livelihoods are threatened by greedy corporations was equally loud and clear: don't accept the dictats of the market, stand and fight.

"20,000 demand Diageo rethink on plant closure" THE HERALD
"20,000 marchers tell Diageo: don't axe jobs" THE SCOTSMAN
          July 23rd: The Great Swine Flu Panic Of 2009   


It seems to me that swine flu has gotten off very lightly when it comes to conspiracy theories. Surely shome mishtake there. Let's help get the ball rolling...

THE FACTS:

1. GlaxoSmithKline announced yesterday that they are raking in £3bilion profits from swine flu drugs this year alone. ("Drugs giant GlaxoSmithKline predicts swine flu gold rush" Guardian, 22nd July 2009)

2. The chief executive of GlaxoSmithKline, Andrew Witty, said the company had been preparing for a pandemic for the last three-and-a-half years and had spent more than £1bn to ensure its factories could crank up production at short notice. (Ditto above)

3. In November 2005, U.S. President George W. Bush requested that Congress fund $7.1 billion in emergency spending for flu pandemic preparedness (the Senate had already passed an $8.1 billion bill). Bush's plan included $1.4 billion for government purchases of antiviral drugs. (From here).

4. The leading anti-flu drug being stockpiled is Tamiflu - produced by Roche pharmateuticual company and developed by Gilead Sciences. Former US Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld was a former chairman of Roche and is a substantial shareholder in Gilead Sciences. ("Donald Rumsfeld's Controversial links to drug company" Daily Mail, 2nd May 2009)


5. From a purely British perspective, the media isnt talking about MPs expenses, Fred the Shred, executive bonuses, and bank bail outs anymore. The bastards have all got away with lining their pockets at the tax payers expense. The media have swum like a shoal of docile complicit goldfish to the next pond.

THE REALITY?

"Swine flu in Scotland may have peaked" Guardian, 23rd July 2009

A LONE VOICE AMONG THE BEWILDERED STAMPEDING HERD?


"Just two months of swine flu sniffles, and madness reigns" Simon Jenkins, Guardian, 22nd July 2009

THE GREAT BIRD FLU PANIC OF 2005

Anyone remember "bird flu"? A World Health Organisation official predicted 150 million deaths from a bird flu pandemic. ("WHO tries to play down expert warning of 150 million deaths from flu pandemic" Independent, 1st Oct 2005)

Bird flu was going to kill 750,000 of us according to the UK government's chief medical office/panic merchant Sir Liam Donaldson. On his advice the UK government ordered 14.6 million doses of Tamiflu in 2005.

Full credit to Sir Liam though, he cautiously rounded the panic down to just 65,000 deaths for swine flu. ("Swine flu could kill 65,000 in UK, warns chief medical officer" Guardian, 16th July 2009)

PANIC STATIONS! THE ARBROATH CONNECTION

"It emerged yesterday that the Arbroath FC midfielder Robert Urquhart had been diagnosed with swine flu after returning from a holiday in Ibiza."
SCOTSMAN, 4th JULY 2009

"Bird Flu panic hit close to home at the weekend when a flock of 20 hens was abandoned in woods near Arbroath and had to be destroyed."
THE ARBROATH HERALD AND GAZETTE, 14th APRIL 2006

Makes ye wonder.
          Can California fish catch break with giant tunnels? Depends   
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Gov. Jerry Brown's plan to route much of California's mightiest river into two massive tunnels poses new perils for salmon and other struggling native species, but could give them a couple of breaks as well, experts and project supporters and opponents say in the wake of two newly issued wildlife rulings on the $16 billion project....
          Digitization of Operational Technologies to Drive Transportation Cybersecurity Spending to $14 Billion by 2022   
...the sectors, and with private and public stakeholders internationally." Vendors actively engaged in deploying cybersecurity alongside transport operators include Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise, Lynx Software Technologies, NCC Group, RAD Data Communications, RazorSecure, Telefonica, ThetaRay, and Waterfall Security. In parallel to industry efforts ...


          Arun Netravali, Former Bell Labs President and Digital Video Pioneer, Awarded the 2017 Marconi Prize   
...research areas at the Labs, including packet networks, fiber optics and all scalable IP cellular networks. He led Bell Labs (Lucent) at a time when it had 22,000 employees and a budget of $3.5 billion, launched 35 ventures, turned ...

          OFS Launches InvisiLight® Facade Solution   
...energy consumers and businesses. OFS' corporate lineage dates back to 1876 and includes technology powerhouses such as AT&T and Lucent Technologies. Today, OFS is owned by Furukawa Electric, a multi-billion dollar global leader in optical communications. For more information ...

          $53.78 Billion Cloud Managed Services Market 2017 - Global Forecast to 2022 - Research and Markets   
...Systems, Inc. • Civica • DXC Technology • Ericsson • Fujitsu Ltd. • Huwaei Technologies • IBM Corporation • NEC Corporation • NTT Data Corporation • Nokia Corporation (Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise) For more information about this report visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/6qnk8g/cloud_managed Media Contact: Research and Markets ...

          Fiber Optic Connector Market to Reach $5.9 Billion by 2025 - Huge Potential to be Incorporated into a Wide Range of Applications - Research and Markets   
...other related regulatory authorities. Companies Mentioned • 3M • Optical Cable Corporation (OCC) • Sterlite Technologies Ltd. • OFS Fitel, LLC • Corning, Inc. • Alcatel-Lucent SA • Arris Group, Inc. • TE Connectivity Ltd. • Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd. Key Topics Covered: 1 Methodology and Scope 2 Executive ...

          Research and Markets - Worldwide Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi) and Light Fidelity (Li-Fi) Market: Wi-Fi and Li-Fi Markets to Grow at a CAGR of 15% and 61% to 2022   
...expected to reach $4.09 billion (Wi-Fi) and $827.9 million (Li-Fi), respectively by 2022. Companies Mentioned • Alcatel-Lucent SA • Cisco Systems Inc • Ericsson • GE Lighting • HPE • IBSENtelecom Ltd • LIGHTBEE • Lucibel • Oledcomm S.A.S. • pureLiFi • Renesas Electronics Corp ...

          Fiber Optic Connector Market to Reach $5.9 Billion by 2025 - Key Players are Corning, Optical Cable Corporation, Sterlite Technologies Limited, 3M & OFS Fitel - Research and Markets   
...regulatory authorities. Companies Mentioned • 3M ( News - Alert ) • Optical Cable Corporation (OCC) • Sterlite Technologies Ltd. • OFS Fitel, LLC • Corning, Inc. • Alcatel-Lucent ( News - Alert ) SA • Arris Group, Inc. • TE Connectivity Ltd. • Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd. Key Topics Covered: 1 Methodology and Scope ...

          Cloud Managed Services Market Worth 53.78 Billion USD by 2022   
...the forecast period. The major service providers in the Cloud Managed Services Market include Accenture plc ( Republic of Ireland ), Alcatel-Lucent S.A. ( Finland ), Cisco Systems, Inc. (US), IBM Corporation (US), Ericsson ( Sweden ), Fujitsu Ltd. ( Japan ), Huawei Technologies ( China ), NEC Corporation ...

          Global Enterprise Collaboration Market to Reach $86.9 Billion by 2025 - Advanced Technological Developments in Enterprise Collaboration - Research and Markets   
...usage of social networking websites • Advanced technological developments in Enterprise Collaboration • Growth Opportunities/Investment Opportunities Companies Mentioned • Facebook, Inc. • Alcatel-Lucent SA ( Nokia ( News - Alert ) Networks) • Atlassian Corporation PLC • Cafex Communications Inc. • Cisco Systems, Inc. • Hewlett-Packard ( News - Alert ) Development Company ...

          Passive Optical LAN Market is Expected to Reach USD 50 Billion by 2022   
...user-friendly web interface. Key Players of Passive Optical LAN Market: • Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. (China) • Ericsson Inc. (Sweden) • Alcatel Lucent SA (France) • TE Connectivity Ltd. (Switzerland) • ADTRAN, Inc. (U.S.) • ZTE Corporation (China) • Verizon Communications Inc. (U.S.) • 3M Company ...


          Oilfield Communications Market Worth 4.46 Billion USD by 2022   
...Switzerland ), CommScope ( North Carolina , US), Inmarsat Plc ( London, UK ), Tait Communications ( Christchurch, New Zealand ), Baker Hughes Incorporated ( Texas , US), Alcatel-Lucent S.A. ( Boulogne-Billancourt, France ), Ceragon Networks Ltd. ( New Jersey , US), RAD Data Communications, Inc. ( Tel Aviv, Israel ), RigNet Incorporated ...

          Tools and Components for Photonic Applications to Reach $19.2 Billion by 2021 - By Component, End Use Application & Region - Research and Markets   
...based on the functions of photonic sensors and detectors to arrive at a market estimation. Companies Mentioned • ABB Ltd. • Alcatel-Lucent ( News - Alert ) SA • Alphasense • Analog Devices Inc. • Avago Technologies Ltd. • Freescale Semiconductor Inc. • Hamamatsu Photonics K.K. • International Business Machines ...

          Global $13.41 Billion Optical Switches Market Insights, Opportunity Analysis, Market Shares and Forecast 2017 - 2023 - Research and Markets   
...Market challenges • Slow transformation of signals from routers Key market players of optical switches are • Agilent Technologies • Agiltorn Corp. • Alcatel Lucent • Cisco ( News - Alert ) System Inc. • Coriant • Emcore Corp. • Ericsson Inc. • Fujitsu Ltd. • Hewlett Packard Company. • Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd • Infinera ...

          Air Pollution and Mortality in the Medicare Population.   

Air Pollution and Mortality in the Medicare Population.

N Engl J Med. 2017 Jun 29;376(26):2513-2522

Authors: Di Q, Wang Y, Zanobetti A, Wang Y, Koutrakis P, Choirat C, Dominici F, Schwartz JD

Abstract
Background Studies have shown that long-term exposure to air pollution increases mortality. However, evidence is limited for air-pollution levels below the most recent National Ambient Air Quality Standards. Previous studies involved predominantly urban populations and did not have the statistical power to estimate the health effects in underrepresented groups. Methods We constructed an open cohort of all Medicare beneficiaries (60,925,443 persons) in the continental United States from the years 2000 through 2012, with 460,310,521 person-years of follow-up. Annual averages of fine particulate matter (particles with a mass median aerodynamic diameter of less than 2.5 μm [PM2.5]) and ozone were estimated according to the ZIP Code of residence for each enrollee with the use of previously validated prediction models. We estimated the risk of death associated with exposure to increases of 10 μg per cubic meter for PM2.5 and 10 parts per billion (ppb) for ozone using a two-pollutant Cox proportional-hazards model that controlled for demographic characteristics, Medicaid eligibility, and area-level covariates. Results Increases of 10 μg per cubic meter in PM2.5 and of 10 ppb in ozone were associated with increases in all-cause mortality of 7.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 7.1 to 7.5) and 1.1% (95% CI, 1.0 to 1.2), respectively. When the analysis was restricted to person-years with exposure to PM2.5 of less than 12 μg per cubic meter and ozone of less than 50 ppb, the same increases in PM2.5 and ozone were associated with increases in the risk of death of 13.6% (95% CI, 13.1 to 14.1) and 1.0% (95% CI, 0.9 to 1.1), respectively. For PM2.5, the risk of death among men, blacks, and people with Medicaid eligibility was higher than that in the rest of the population. Conclusions In the entire Medicare population, there was significant evidence of adverse effects related to exposure to PM2.5 and ozone at concentrations below current national standards. This effect was most pronounced among self-identified racial minorities and people with low income. (Supported by the Health Effects Institute and others.).

PMID: 28657878 [PubMed - in process]


          Live-In Maintenance Associate-Kitchener - Timbercreek Communities - Kitchener, ON   
Today we are a $5.6 billion multi-faceted investment management company focused on both domestic and international real estate investment....
From Indeed - Tue, 20 Jun 2017 16:43:22 GMT - View all Kitchener, ON jobs
          Building Administrator - Timbercreek Communities - Kitchener, ON   
Today we are a $5.6 billion multi-faceted investment management company focused on both domestic and international real estate investment....
From Indeed - Tue, 16 May 2017 15:02:05 GMT - View all Kitchener, ON jobs
          Back To Biz: The Rulebook For Starting Your Own Business   
Create a strong brand through easy to identify colours, logos and advertising. A social media marketing strategy is becoming one of the strongest tools in any business’s tool box. There are over 3 billion internet users and o... [article continues]
          4 Things to do if your Child is Injured in an Auto Accident   
One of the worse phone calls you may receive is one stating that your child has been hurt due to a car accident. However, studies show that $10 billion was the cost of motor vehicle injuries in 2013. This is sure to be nerve wracking and stressful to any parent. It’s important to be proactive and do […]
          The Swiss National Bank Owns $80 Billion In US Stocks – Here’s The Catch   
by John Mauldin  Switzerland is a small country of just 8 million people, but they make an outsized impact on economics and finance and money. Because Switzerland is considered a safe haven and a...
          Maintenance Tech - Praxair - Utah   
With annual sales over $10 billion, Praxair, Inc. is a global, Fortune 500 company that supplies atmospheric, process and specialty gases, high-performance...
From Praxair - Thu, 25 May 2017 00:00:53 GMT - View all Utah jobs
          Kenya: How tycoon with dubious Kenyan past got entangled in Tanzania's mega scam   
For a man who founded his first company at 19, Sethi knew at an early age that he could make a fortune from lucrative multi-billion shilling construction contracts from government entities
          RF Hardware Design Engineer (IMMEDIATE) - ENEA - Ottawa, ON   
Every day, more than three billion people around the globe rely on our technologies in a wide range of applications in multiple verticals – from Telecom and...
From Dice - Sat, 03 Jun 2017 04:15:26 GMT - View all Ottawa, ON jobs
          Stocks Not Expensive in This Bull Market, $44 Billion Fund Says   
“European stocks currently offer more value for money than American stocks,” Finland's Timo Ritakallio says.
          Harvard Links Billionaire Samwers, Ex-Eton Manager in New Fund   
The Avente Capital Partners I LP, with about $28 million in assets, plans to make opportunistic investments in a variety of real estate sectors.
          Renovation of San Diego Area Affordable Housing Community Completed   

WNC provided $4.4 million in LIHTC equity to aid in renovating Sonoma Court Apartments, including the installation of energy efficient modifications

San Diego, CA -- (ReleaseWire) -- 03/18/2015 -- WNC, a national investor in real estate and community development initiatives, announced today the completion of an extensive renovation to Sonoma Court Apartments, which provides 61 units of affordable housing to Escondido families. WNC provided $4.4 million in low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) equity to fund the project.

Located at 508 E. Mission Ave., Sonoma Apartments is comprised of a mix of one-, two- and three-bedroom units. Resident amenities include onsite management, a community room, swimming pool, centralized laundry facility, picnic area, extensive green belts, playground and gated entry and parking. Each unit includes central heating and air conditioning, new carpeting, a balcony or patio, and an upgraded stove, refrigerator and dishwasher.

"We are very pleased to have worked with Affirmed Housing and NEXUS for Affordable Housing Inc. to improve and maintain a vital component of Southern California's affordable housing supply," said WNC Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Michael Gaber. "Sonoma Court Apartments was originally constructed in 1978 and last renovated in 1999. This renovation modernizes and improves the community for current and future residents, while providing valuable energy efficiency upgrades and enhancements."

The renovation of Sonoma Court Apartments included the installation of a solar photovoltaic generation system, new roof, insulation, energy star appliances and energy efficient windows. The property was re-developed by Affirmed Housing Group, with NEXUS for Affordable Housing Inc. serving as the managing general partner of the project.

About WNC
WNC, founded in 1971 and headquartered in Irvine, Calif., is a national investor in real estate and community development initiatives. WNC has acquired more than $6.5 billion of assets totaling in excess of 1,225 properties in 45 states, Washington D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Since 2000, WNC has been awarded four New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) allocations, totaling $178 million, and has facilitated development of 17 low-income community projects. WNC's investor base exceeds 19,500 institutional and retail clients, including Fortune 500 companies, multinational banks, and insurance companies.

Additional information is available at http://www.wncinc.com

http://www.wncinc.com

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.releasewire.com/press-releases/release-587161.htm

Media Relations Contact

Julie Leber
Telephone: 949-427-5172, ext- 703
Email: Click to Email Julie Leber
Web: http://www.wncinc.com


          Century-Old Building Renovated Into Affordable Housing and More in Hutchinson, Kansas   

WNC provided $7.5 million in LIHTC equity to fund affordable housing units at new Wiley Plaza

Hutchinson, KS -- (ReleaseWire) -- 01/22/2015 -- WNC, a national investor in real estate and community development initiatives, announced today that the renovation of the historic Wiley Building, including the development of 40 affordable housing units, is complete. WNC provided $7.5 million in low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) equity to fund the adaptive reuse of the building, originally constructed more than 100 years ago.

Reintroduced as Wiley Plaza, the property is comprised of ground-floor and mezzanine retail space, five floors of affordable housing units, and two floors, plus a penthouse, of market rate apartments. Wiley Plaza also includes a new multi-level parking garage with 104 parking spaces.

Wiley Plaza's one-, two- and three-bedroom affordable housing units are open to individuals and families. Common amenities of the elevator-equipped building include on-site management, a community room, fitness center, computer center, elevators and security cameras.

Located at the intersection of North Main Street and East First Avenue, the eight-story building was originally built in 1913 and was expanded twice in the 1930s. The project is located adjacent to the historic Fox Theater in Hutchinson's downtown historic district.

"The Wiley Plaza is a testament to the ability of private and public entities to work together to improve our local communities efficiently and effectively," said WNC's Senior Vice President of Underwriting, Greg Hand. "State, local and federal tax credits were employed to not only renovate this beautiful structure, but to deliver terribly needed quality, affordable housing to the people of Hutchinson. We couldn't be more pleased with the result."

Wiley Plaza was re-developed by Manske & Associates, LLC. The project also received financing from Historic Preservation Partners Inc., First National Bank, Kansas Housing Resources Corporation and the City of Hutchinson.

About WNC
WNC, founded in 1971 and headquartered in Irvine, Calif., is a national investor in real estate and community development initiatives. WNC has acquired more than $6.5 billion of assets totaling in excess of 1,225 properties in 45 states, Washington D.C. and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Since 2000, WNC has been awarded four New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC) allocations, totaling $178 million, and has facilitated development of 17 low-income community projects. WNC's investor base exceeds 19,500 institutional and retail clients, including Fortune 500 companies, multinational banks, and insurance companies.

Additional information is available at http://www.wncinc.com

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.releasewire.com/press-releases/release-576553.htm

Media Relations Contact

Julie Leber
Telephone: 949-427-5172, ext- 703
Email: Click to Email Julie Leber
Web: http://www.wncinc.com


          Looking For The Best SEO Company? Here Is A Checklist   
Looking-For-The-Best-SEO-Company--Here-Is-A-ChecklistAccording to Internet Live Stats, there are over 3.66 billion internet users and the number keeps growing. Most of these people are researching brands and products online. If your business is not leveraging the internet, you are losing out on this customer-rich marketplace. A few years back, all you would have needed to capitalize on […]
          Fraudulent Obamaphone Program   
The controversial “Obamaphone” program, which pays for cellphones for the poor, is rife with fraud, according to a new government report released Thursday that found more than a third of enrollees may not even be qualified. Known officially as the Lifeline Program, the phone giveaway became a symbol of government waste in the previous administration. Now a new report from the Government Accountability Office bears out those concerns. The report, requested by Sen. Claire McCaskill, Missouri Democrat, also says the program has stashed some $9 billion in assets in private bank accounts rather than with the federal treasury, further increasing...
          Comment on I ALSO Financed BIAFRA Agitation – Evans Opens Up Again, Reveals Nnamdi Kanu’s IPOB, Radio Got Millions As Aid From Him by peaceforall   
lt's obvious that the zoo and her primitive forces of oppression has lost idea on how to stop the people's leader Nnamdi Kanu and restoration of Biafra. So the unproffessional lslamist glorified terrorists police gives out information now through online Newspaper. there is a parable in lgbo that said when lion becomes very old he starts eating fowls. May thunder fire the notorious lslamist glorified terrorists police and their notorious billionaire kidnap kingpin. lnstead of allowing peaceful Referendum on Biafra, animals in the zoo prefer continue advertizing their ignorance and stupidity. No referendum No zoo election in Biafra land.
          $69 Billion Worth of Bezos Bombshells   

Very cool graphic :   Source: Bloomberg Gadfly

The post $69 Billion Worth of Bezos Bombshells appeared first on The Big Picture.


          CMS Releases 2016 ACA Marketplace Reinsurance And Risk Adjustment Data   

On June 30, 2017, CMS released the results for the third year (2016) of the reinsurance and risk adjustment programs, two of the Affordable Care Act’s “three R” premium stabilization programs. The 2016 results from the risk corridor program, the “third R” will be announced later this year.

ACA’s “Three R” Progams Are Modeled After Medicare Part D, But Are Weaker And More Controversial Than Their Part D Counterparts

The ACA’s three R programs were modeled after similar premium stabilization programs that have operated for about a decade for Medicare Part D prescription drug plans. The Part D program also has a risk adjustment program (which adjusts premiums prospectively rather than insurer income retrospectively), a reinsurance program (which is much more generous than the ACA program and permanent rather than temporary), and a risk corridor program (also permanent, and initially more generous than the ACA program.). The part D premium stabilization programs played an important role in attracting insurers to the prescription drug program initially and have helped to keep premiums stable and premium increases low since the program was launched in 2006. They have undoubtedly been an important factor in maintaining the popularity and bipartisan support for Part D.

The ACA premium stabilization programs have proven far more controversial than the Medicare Part D programs. The risk corridor program has been criticized as an Insurer “bail-out” and was seriously undermined by appropriations riders enacted by Congress limiting program payouts to the amount collected from insurers. For 2014, the Department of Health and Human Services was only able to pay out 12.6 percent of the amounts owed insurers under the statutory formula because of this constraint, while it has been unable to make any payments for 2015 as it had to set off 2015 collections against 2014 obligations.  This no doubt contributed to the insolvency of a number of insurers and has resulted in a number of lawsuits in the Federal Court of Claims, as insurers attempt to collect the full amount they claim they are due under the statute.

The reinsurance program was supposed to collect $25 billion over its three- year life and pay $5 billion of that amount to the Treasury, apparently to reimburse it for funds spent on the Early Retiree Reinsurance program from 2010 to 2013.  Collections fell short in the first two years, and the Obama administration took the position that this reimbursement to the Treasury would only be paid after all reinsurance obligations were first met.  It paid nothing to the Treasury in 2015 and less than a half a billion dollars for 2016.  This position has been condemned by ACA critics and legislation was introduced in 2016 to force HHS to make the repayment.  The Trump administration has apparently not bowed to this pressure and is paying the full $4 billion due to insurers under the program for 2016.

The formula used by the risk adjustment program has also come in for criticism. CMS made a number of changes in its risk adjustment methodology for 2017, including factoring in preventive services and better accounting for drug cost increases.  It will incorporate even greater changes for 2018, including adjustment for partial-year enrollees and prescription drug use and setting up a separate risk adjustment pool for very high costs cases.

A Widespread Recognition Of The Importance Of Reinsurance

Despite criticism, the reinsurance program has in fact made a substantial contribution to constraining marketplace premiums. During 2014, the reinsurance program reduced net claim costs an estimated 10 to 14 percent, during 2015, 6 to 11 percent, and during 2016, 4 to 6 percent.  The end of the reinsurance program after 2016 has been a major driver of premium increases for 2017 and 2018.  Recognizing this, there is a consensus in Congress that further reinsurance funding is needed.  The House’s American Health Care Act, the Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act, and health reform legislation introduced by Democrats all include reinsurance funds for the individual market.

The federal risk adjustment program for 2016 covered non-grandfathered insurers in the individual and small group markets in every state except Massachusetts, which operated its own risk adjustment program. Transfers happened within each state.  The reinsurance program covered non-grandfathered insurers in the individual market in every state.

Participating insurers were required to set up EDGE servers through which they could transfer to CMS the data necessary to calculate reinsurance programs and risk adjustment information while retaining control of sensitive enrollee information. Nationally, 496 insurers were eligible for reinsurance payments.  Of these 445 will receive reinsurance payments.  CMS estimates that 52.9 percent of claims between $90 and $250,000 will be payable for the year, with 83 percent of that money currently available through the $3.3 billion already collected for the reinsurance program.

A total of 751 insurers participated in the risk adjustment program, which covered the individual and small group markets. Default risk adjustment charges were assessed against 42 insurers, 41 that did not submit EDGE server data and one that did but did not provide HHS with access to the required data. Of the 709 insurers that participated in transfers, 469 issued individual market non-catastrophic plans, 247 issued individual market catastrophic plans, 552 issued small group market plans, and two issued merged market plans.

The CMS report states that reinsurance and risk adjustment transfers correlate strongly with paid claims, showing that the programs are working as intended.  Insurers in the lowest quartile of claims costs were assessed on average a risk adjustment charge of 18 percent of total collected premiums, while insurers in the highest quartile of claims received risk adjust payments of 27 percent of total premiums.  Risk adjustment transfers averaged 11 percent of premiums in the individual market, up from 10 percent in 2015, while small group transfers remained steady at 6 percent of premiums.  CMS reports that there was a significant improvement in the quantity and quality of data provided by insurers for 2016, and thus a higher correlation between interim risk scores released in the spring and the final scores released on June 30.

Surprisingly, CMS reports that risk scores remained stable in the individual market and decreased in the small group market.  It was expected that as individuals had been enrolled longer in the program and insurers became more experienced in reporting the diagnoses on which the risk scores were based, the risk scores would go up, but they did not.  The data also would seem to refute the commonly held belief that the marketplace population is becoming sicker.  Risk adjustment transfers (calculated using the absolute value of net transfers for each issuer in the risk pool) amounted to 11 percent of enrollment-weighted monthly premiums in the individual market, 6 percent in the small group market, and 18 percent in the catastrophic market, for a national average of 8 percent.

Big Winners And Losers

The size of some of the transfers is remarkable.  Blue Cross of California will receive an estimated $210 million in reinsurance payments, $49 million in risk adjustment in the individual market, and $217 million in risk adjustment in the small group market.  Blue Shield of California is slated to receive $201 million in reinsurance, $265 million in risk adjustment in the individual market, and $106 million in risk adjustment in the small group market. The California Kaiser Foundation Health Plan will receive $99 million in reinsurance, but must pay in $183 million in risk adjustment in the individual market and $255 million in risk adjustment in the small group market.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Florida is slated to receive $127 million in reinsurance and  $464 million in risk adjustment payments in the individual market, while Molina Healthcare of Florida must pay in $253 million, Celtic Insurance Company of Florida $161 million, and Coventry Health Care of Florida $112 million.  Molina Healthcare of Texas must pay in $126 million in individual market risk adjustment.  Other insurers receiving nine-figure risk adjustment or reinsurance payments include Humana Employers Health Plan of Georgia, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Illinois, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Minnesota, Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina, and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas.


          UPDATE 6-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 bln in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. "support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability," but there was no change to the United States'...
          UPDATE 5-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 bln in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. "support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability," but there was no change to the United States'...
          UPDATE 4-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 bln in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. "support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability," but there was no change to the United States'...
          With bank sanctions and arms sales, US hardens line on China   
WASHINGTON— The Trump administration hardened its approach to China on Thursday, blacklisting a small Chinese bank over dealings with North Korea while approving more than a billion dollars in military sales to Taiwan. It was unlikely China would see it that way, especially given the one-two punch with the sales to Taiwan, the self-governing territory that...
          UPDATE 3-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 bln in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. "support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability," but there was no change to the United States'...
          UPDATE 2-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 bln in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. "support for Taiwan's ability to maintain a sufficient self-defense capability," but there was no change to the United States'...
          UPDATE 1-U.S. plans to sell Taiwan about $1.42 billion in arms   
WASHINGTON, June 29- The United States plans to sell Taiwan $1.42 billion in arms, the first such sale under the administration of Donald Trump and a move sure to anger China, whose help the president has been seeking to rein in North Korea. U.S. officials said in March the administration was crafting a big arms sale to Taiwan, but such talk died down as Trump sought to...
          General Motors Wins a Star   
Two years ago, when President Obama decided to spend billions to prop up General Motors, and then to guide it through a cushioned, soft landing bankruptcy, there were a lot of doubters. Many thought nature should have been allowed to take its course, and that the once-mighty General should have been allowed to die. At the time, a commentator on NBC News said As the GM bailout goes, so goes the Obama presidency. But you wont find Republicans saying that today. General Motors has come roaring back in a way thats astonished virtually everyone in the industry, not to mention those who talk for a living. Yesterday, we learned for the first time since 2004, GM ended last year with a profit -- four point seven billion dollars. That was also its biggest profit since the go-go year of 1999. Whats more, there are cautious expectations that GM will do even better this year, as the nationwide automotive market continues to recover. One strike against the General is that it still doesnt have a lot
          Ibs Symptoms - Detox May Alleviate Your IBS   
ibs bloating constipation: Nowadays, television is full of commercials advertising drugs to help people suffering from IBS, or Spastic bowel Syndrome. Apparently the multi-billion dollar pharmaceutical companies have finally taken notice of the 15% of people who deal with IBS... Ibs Symptoms
          The Global Market for IoT for Intelligent Buildings is Expected to Exceed $22 Billion in 2026   

IoT-enabled buildings support open communications and standards, contributing to reduced costs and improved integration possibilities A new report from Navigant Research examines the global market opportunity for Internet of Things (IoT) technologies for commercial buildings, providing global forecasts, segmented by region, customer, and offering, through 2026. Commercial building owners are feeling the pressure to invest in intelligent [...]
          The Global Market for Energy Efficient Building Technologies is Expected to Reach $360 Billion in 2026   

Digitization is allowing improved building performance while also changing the competitive dynamics of the industry A new report from Navigant Research examines the global market for energy efficient building products and services, providing an analysis of market issues and global forecasts for revenue, segmented by product type, service type, region, and construction type, through 2026. The landscape [...]
          150 Things to Know on Canada’s 150th Birthday   
On the occasion of Canada’s 150th birthday here are 150 things to know...

1. Today, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is one of the world’s most popular political leaders.
2. Justin Trudeau emerged out of the shadows and into the political spotlight when delivering the eulogy at his father’s funeral, the late Pierre Elliot Trudeau in September 2000.
3. The four pallbearers at the funeral were Justin Trudeau, the Aga Khan, former President Jimmy Carter and…the late Cuban autocrat Fidel Castro.
4. Justin Trudeau’s brother, Alexandre Trudeau, is a fearless filmmaker, who was Embedded in Baghdad before, during and after the U.S. invasion in 2003.
5. While Justin is a social media star, his father was the true showman, who once famously pirouetted behind Queen Elizabeth’s back.
6. In fact, this was just one of many colorful moments. To this day in Canada to give the ‘Pierre Trudeau salute’ means something, very interesting…
7. And who can forget the moment featuring the Rolling Stones, the paparazzi and the Prime Minister.
8. However, the elder Trudeau also did some amazing things for Canada. For starters, until 1982 when he brought it back to Canada, the constitution was effectively governed by the Queen of England.
9. That same year he pushed through the Canadian Charter of Rights & Freedoms.
10. This protection of Canadian rights and diversity did not emerge overnight. Back in 1971, the elder Trudeau declared the new Canadian multiculturalism policy.
11. Four years earlier, in 1967, Pierre Trudeau uttered these famous words: “There's no place for the state in the bedrooms of the nation,” when he decriminalized homosexuality in sweeping changes to the criminal code.
12. It took Canada until 2005 to legalize same-sex marriage, being the first nation outside of Europe and fourth in the world to do so.
13. However, while things were eventful under Pierre Trudeau they were also turbulent. He suspended civil liberties during the ‘October Crisis’ in 1970, when he invoked the ‘War Measures Act’ after a provincial cabinet minister was kidnapped by separatist militants.
14. He also enacted the National Energy Program in the 1980s which effectively federalized revenues from energy resources in Alberta, creating long-term hostility towards the federal Liberal Party in the years to come in Western Canada.
15. Trudeau was also an antagonist to separatist ambitions in Quebec, delivering two fiery speeches, one in 1980, and another in 1995 to thwart referendums for independence.
16. All in all, the elder Trudeau served for 15 years but he wasn’t the longest serving Prime Minister. That would be William Lyon Mackenzie King, who served for 21 years.
17. In second place was the founding Prime Minister, John A. Macdonald, who served for 18 years – and who also had a bit of a drinking problem.
18. When Canada was founded in 1867, there were only four provinces: Ontario, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.
19. In fact it was not until 1949 that the last province, Newfoundland joined Canada, and that was only after a barely won referendum.
20. Canada also has three Territories: the Northwest Territories, Yukon, and Nunavat, the latter being formed in 1999.
21. The country is extremely ‘big’, the second largest in the world with over 2 million lakes, among other things.
22. But, 75% of Canadians actually live within 100 miles of the U.S.-Canada border.
23. This may be one of the reasons why the U.S.-Canada economic relationship is the largest in the world, estimated to total US$630 billion in 2016 alone.
24. Close to 30,000 trucks cross the border every single day between the two countries.
25. While things are rosy today, it wasn’t always so. During the War of 1812, the Canadas, as the British colonies were known then, went to battle with the U.S., ultimately burning down the White House on August 24, 1814.
26. War was quite frequent back then due to competing French, British, and American ambitions. After fierce fighting, the 1763 Treaty of Paris essentially gave the British control over much of French Canadian land.
27. In addition, one cannot forget that much of Canadian land belonged to the First Nations, who have been marginalized, ostracizied, occupied and colonized throughout much of Canadian history.
28. During Canada’s first years, a group of people called the Metis who were ethnically mixed between First nations and European descent, rose up in rebellion, ultimately establishing a short-lived provisional government in 1870.
29. The leader of that rebellion Louis Riel was ultimately ranked as the 11th Greatest Canadian.
30. That battle was only one of many for the acknowledgement of the rights of First Nations. One of the worst stains on Canadian history was the residential school system that at one point put a third of all First Nations children under the care of the state.
31. Thousands of students died, and many more were subject to emotional, physical, and sexual abuse.
32. While today, people acknowledge some of these aspects of history, the fight is not over. One of the scandals that was a campaign issue for Justin Trudeau, was the plight of up to 4,000 missing or murdered aboriginal women.
33. Canada’s history has not always been one of inclusivity. The Chinese Exclusion or Immigration Act of 1923 effectively banned immigrants of Chinese origin.
34. This was a culmination of violence and protests against immigrants from East and South Asia, including riots in 1907 in Vancouver, British Columbia.
35. Today, whites are expected to become a minority in Vancouver by 2031 (although I suspect this has already happened).
36. 20.6% of Canadians are foreign-born today and 19.1% identify themselves as visible minorities. 3% of the population identifies as Muslim.
37. There are more Sikhs in the Canadian Cabinet than there are in India’s government (4 versus 2).
38. It was not until the 1940s, however, that Sikhs truly received voting rights.
39. Canadian women achieved the right to vote around the same time as women in the U.S. in the late 1910s.
40. Canada also became home to a number of Black Canadians due to the Underground Railroad, although racism has reared its ugly head in Canada as well.
41. While ethnic and racial struggles have been real, so have class struggles. A lot of this culminated in gained labor rights and ultimately universal healthcare.
42. The ‘grandfather’ of universal healthcare was actually New Democratic Party leader Tommy Douglas, who was named the Greatest Canadian in that (in-)famous poll.
43. Tommy Douglas is also the grandfather of prominent Canadian actor Kiefer Sutherland.
44. Kiefer Sutherland’s father is Donald Sutherland, who married Tommy Douglas daughter, prominent public figure, Shirley Douglas.
45. While living in the U.S. Donald Sutherland retained only Canadian citizenship but lost the right to vote due to the Conservative Party’s new laws in 2015.
46. This also led to a rallying cry by then candidate Justin Trudeau, that “A Canadian is a Canadian is a Canadian.”
47. There are almost 3 million Canadians living abroad but many retain a vibrant Canadian identity.
48. For example, the Terry Fox Run, a hallmark of Canada, has been held in over 60 countries by countless millions over the years.
49. Through these runs over $650 million has been raised for cancer research.
50. And it is all inspired by Terry Fox, who ran the Marathon of Hope in 1980 after losing one leg to cancer.
51. He ended his run after reaching 5,373 kilometres over 143 days.
52. Inspired by Terry’s courage, a fellow West Coaster, Rick Hansen embarked on a Man in Motion World Tour for two years in 1985.
53. He criss-crossed 34 countries raising $26 million along the way.
54. It also inspired the song St. Elmo’s Fire, which reached #1 on the Billboard Charts.
55. The best-selling Canadian artist of all time remains Celine Dion, who has sold over 200 million albums worldwide.
56. It appears though that fellow Canadian Justin Bieber may soon beat her on the charts.
57. There are a lot of Canadian singers, that are quite prominent, but they often live abroad, like Bryan Adams.
58. In fact, Bryan Adams and Beverley Hills 90210 star Jason Priestly went to the same high school, Argyle Secondary School in Vancouver.
59. And while Bryan Adams is known for his singing, he once mixed up the lyrics of the Canadian national anthem.
60. The Canadian national anthem, ‘O Canada’, was itself composed in 1880.
61. However, the lyrics of the anthem were originally French and were then translated into English.
62. The final English version emerged two decades later, which remains with us today.
Lol, the actress unveiled her plans this morning on snap saying this is her next mission and she is inspired by Rihanna. Recall that Riri has a new boo; Hassan Jameel, a Saudi billionaire reportedly worth $1.5bn? Yes, so Ebube is leaving for Saudi to look for hers. Lol.
          Facebook’s Sex Offender discrimination policy under attack   
Civil rights group calls on Zuckerberg to follow Supreme Court’s lead Washington, D.C. — Representing nearly a million American citizens and their families, the National Association for Rational Sexual Offense Laws (NARSOL) is asking Facebook to permit registered sex offenders to create and maintain user accounts on the world’s largest forum for social communication for the first time since early 2009. On June 19, the U. S. Supreme Court ruled that laws prohibiting access to social media sites such as Facebook are unconstitutional when applied to registered citizens who are no longer under any form of judicial sentencing such as probation or post-release supervision. A week after the unanimous decision was handed down, NARSOL’s Executive Director, Brenda V. Jones, sent a letter on behalf of the civil rights group’s board of directors calling on Zuckerberg and Facebook to end its nine-year-old policy prohibiting registered citizens from creating or maintaining accounts. Facebook—along with the then much larger MySpace—was browbeaten into a 2008 agreement with state attorneys general prohibiting registered citizens from accessing its online forum for social networking. Since then, Facebook has grown from 150 million users to nearly 1.4 billion, a fact noted by the eight supreme court justices who decided in favor of Lester Packingham and against a NC law prohibiting access to social media. NARSOL’s letter is addressed personally to Mark Zuckerberg and cites to Facebook’s newly revised mission statement: To give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together,  and its logical connection with these words from the Supreme Court’s decision: “Even convicted criminals—and in some instances especially convicted criminals—might receive legitimate benefits from these means for access to the world of ideas, in particular if they seek to reform and to pursue lawful and rewarding lives.” “This is the next logical step to take,” said Brenda Jones, NARSOL’S executive director. “Denying First Amendment rights to American citizens based solely upon status or a pejorative label has now been condemned by the highest court in the land. Now it’s time for Facebook to take this even further by removing its blanket ban.” “The world has changed considerably since 2008. It’s nearly impossible for a person to function without access to these ubiquitous forums for keeping up with family and friends, exchanging photos, discussing ideas, expressing opinions for and against whatever happens to interest you. The Court recognized this in its decision. It’s time Facebook did the exact same thing. Bring down this un-American ban, Mr. Zuckerberg!” Jones concluded.
          Exclusive: Dropbox seeks to hire IPO underwriters - sources    

By Liana B. Baker and Lauren Hirsch

(Reuters) - Data-sharing business Dropbox Inc is seeking to hire underwriters for an initial public offering that could come later this year, which would make it the biggest U.S. technology company to go public since Snap Inc , people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The IPO will be a key test of Dropbox's worth after it was valued at almost $10 billion in a private fundraising round in 2014.

Dropbox will begin interviewing investment banks in the coming weeks, the sources said, asking not to be named because the deliberations are private.

Dropbox declined to comment.

Several big U.S. technology companies such as Uber Technologies Inc and Airbnb Inc have resisted going public in recent months, concerned that stock market investors, who focus more on profitability than do private investors, would assign lower valuations to them.

Snap, owner of the popular messaging app Snapchat, was forced to lower its IPO valuation expectations earlier this year amid investor concern over its unproven business model. Its shares have since lingered just above the IPO price, with investors troubled by widening losses and missed analyst estimates. It has a market capitalization of $21 billion.

Still, for many private companies, there is increasing pressure to go pubic as investors look to cash out.

Proceeds from technology IPOs slumped to $6.7 billion in2015 from $34 billion in 2014, and shrunk further to $2.9 billion in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Dropbox's main competitor, Box Inc , was valued at roughly $1.67 billion in its IPO in 2015, less than the $2.4 billion it had been valued at in previous private fundraising rounds.

San Francisco-based Dropbox, which was founded in 2007 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi, counts Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Greylock Partners as investors.

Dropbox started as a free service for consumers to share and store photos, music and other large files. That business became commoditized though, as Alphabet Inc's Google, Microsoft Corp and Amazon.com Inc started offering storage for free.

Dropbox has since pivoted to focus on winning business clients, and Houston, the company's CEO, has said that Dropbox is on track to generate more than $1 billion in revenue this year.

The company has expanded its Dropbox Business that requires companies to pay a fee based on the number of employees who use it. The service in January began offering Smart Sync, which allows users to see and access all of their files, whether stored in the cloud or on a local hard drive, from their desktop.

(Additional reporting by Heather Somerville, Salvador Rodriguez and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler and Stephen Coates)


          Exclusive: Dropbox seeks to hire IPO underwriters - sources    

By Liana B. Baker and Lauren Hirsch

(Reuters) - Data-sharing business Dropbox Inc is seeking to hire underwriters for an initial public offering that could come later this year, which would make it the biggest U.S. technology company to go public since Snap Inc , people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The IPO will be a key test of Dropbox's worth after it was valued at almost $10 billion in a private fundraising round in 2014.

Dropbox will begin interviewing investment banks in the coming weeks, the sources said, asking not to be named because the deliberations are private.

Dropbox declined to comment.

Several big U.S. technology companies such as Uber Technologies Inc and Airbnb Inc have resisted going public in recent months, concerned that stock market investors, who focus more on profitability than do private investors, would assign lower valuations to them.

Snap, owner of the popular messaging app Snapchat, was forced to lower its IPO valuation expectations earlier this year amid investor concern over its unproven business model. Its shares have since lingered just above the IPO price, with investors troubled by widening losses and missed analyst estimates. It has a market capitalization of $21 billion.

Still, for many private companies, there is increasing pressure to go pubic as investors look to cash out.

Proceeds from technology IPOs slumped to $6.7 billion in2015 from $34 billion in 2014, and shrunk further to $2.9 billion in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Dropbox's main competitor, Box Inc , was valued at roughly $1.67 billion in its IPO in 2015, less than the $2.4 billion it had been valued at in previous private fundraising rounds.

San Francisco-based Dropbox, which was founded in 2007 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi, counts Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Greylock Partners as investors.

Dropbox started as a free service for consumers to share and store photos, music and other large files. That business became commoditized though, as Alphabet Inc's Google, Microsoft Corp and Amazon.com Inc started offering storage for free.

Dropbox has since pivoted to focus on winning business clients, and Houston, the company's CEO, has said that Dropbox is on track to generate more than $1 billion in revenue this year.

The company has expanded its Dropbox Business that requires companies to pay a fee based on the number of employees who use it. The service in January began offering Smart Sync, which allows users to see and access all of their files, whether stored in the cloud or on a local hard drive, from their desktop.

(Additional reporting by Heather Somerville, Salvador Rodriguez and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler and Stephen Coates)


          Exclusive: Dropbox seeks to hire IPO underwriters - sources    

By Liana B. Baker and Lauren Hirsch

(Reuters) - Data-sharing business Dropbox Inc is seeking to hire underwriters for an initial public offering that could come later this year, which would make it the biggest U.S. technology company to go public since Snap Inc , people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The IPO will be a key test of Dropbox's worth after it was valued at almost $10 billion in a private fundraising round in 2014.

Dropbox will begin interviewing investment banks in the coming weeks, the sources said, asking not to be named because the deliberations are private.

Dropbox declined to comment.

Several big U.S. technology companies such as Uber Technologies Inc and Airbnb Inc have resisted going public in recent months, concerned that stock market investors, who focus more on profitability than do private investors, would assign lower valuations to them.

Snap, owner of the popular messaging app Snapchat, was forced to lower its IPO valuation expectations earlier this year amid investor concern over its unproven business model. Its shares have since lingered just above the IPO price, with investors troubled by widening losses and missed analyst estimates. It has a market capitalization of $21 billion.

Still, for many private companies, there is increasing pressure to go pubic as investors look to cash out.

Proceeds from technology IPOs slumped to $6.7 billion in2015 from $34 billion in 2014, and shrunk further to $2.9 billion in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Dropbox's main competitor, Box Inc , was valued at roughly $1.67 billion in its IPO in 2015, less than the $2.4 billion it had been valued at in previous private fundraising rounds.

San Francisco-based Dropbox, which was founded in 2007 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi, counts Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Greylock Partners as investors.

Dropbox started as a free service for consumers to share and store photos, music and other large files. That business became commoditized though, as Alphabet Inc's Google, Microsoft Corp and Amazon.com Inc started offering storage for free.

Dropbox has since pivoted to focus on winning business clients, and Houston, the company's CEO, has said that Dropbox is on track to generate more than $1 billion in revenue this year.

The company has expanded its Dropbox Business that requires companies to pay a fee based on the number of employees who use it. The service in January began offering Smart Sync, which allows users to see and access all of their files, whether stored in the cloud or on a local hard drive, from their desktop.

(Additional reporting by Heather Somerville, Salvador Rodriguez and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler and Stephen Coates)


          Exclusive: Dropbox seeks to hire IPO underwriters - sources    

By Liana B. Baker and Lauren Hirsch

(Reuters) - Data-sharing business Dropbox Inc is seeking to hire underwriters for an initial public offering that could come later this year, which would make it the biggest U.S. technology company to go public since Snap Inc , people familiar with the matter said on Friday.

The IPO will be a key test of Dropbox's worth after it was valued at almost $10 billion in a private fundraising round in 2014.

Dropbox will begin interviewing investment banks in the coming weeks, the sources said, asking not to be named because the deliberations are private.

Dropbox declined to comment.

Several big U.S. technology companies such as Uber Technologies Inc and Airbnb Inc have resisted going public in recent months, concerned that stock market investors, who focus more on profitability than do private investors, would assign lower valuations to them.

Snap, owner of the popular messaging app Snapchat, was forced to lower its IPO valuation expectations earlier this year amid investor concern over its unproven business model. Its shares have since lingered just above the IPO price, with investors troubled by widening losses and missed analyst estimates. It has a market capitalization of $21 billion.

Still, for many private companies, there is increasing pressure to go pubic as investors look to cash out.

Proceeds from technology IPOs slumped to $6.7 billion in2015 from $34 billion in 2014, and shrunk further to $2.9 billion in 2016, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Dropbox's main competitor, Box Inc , was valued at roughly $1.67 billion in its IPO in 2015, less than the $2.4 billion it had been valued at in previous private fundraising rounds.

San Francisco-based Dropbox, which was founded in 2007 by Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates Drew Houston and Arash Ferdowsi, counts Sequoia Capital, T. Rowe Price and Greylock Partners as investors.

Dropbox started as a free service for consumers to share and store photos, music and other large files. That business became commoditized though, as Alphabet Inc's Google, Microsoft Corp and Amazon.com Inc started offering storage for free.

Dropbox has since pivoted to focus on winning business clients, and Houston, the company's CEO, has said that Dropbox is on track to generate more than $1 billion in revenue this year.

The company has expanded its Dropbox Business that requires companies to pay a fee based on the number of employees who use it. The service in January began offering Smart Sync, which allows users to see and access all of their files, whether stored in the cloud or on a local hard drive, from their desktop.

(Additional reporting by Heather Somerville, Salvador Rodriguez and Stephen Nellis in San Francisco; Editing by Leslie Adler and Stephen Coates)


          Pope shakes up Vatican by replacing conservative doctrinal chief    

By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - In a major shake-up of the Vatican's administration on Saturday, Pope Francis replaced Catholicism's top theologian, a conservative German cardinal who has been at odds with the pontiff's vision of a more inclusive Church.

A brief Vatican statement said Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Mueller's five-year mandate as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, a department charged with defending Catholic doctrine, would not be renewed.

The position is the most important one that a pope fills in the Vatican hierarchy after the Secretary of State. Most incumbents keep it until they retire, which in Mueller's case would have been in six years.

Mueller, 69, who was appointed by former Pope Benedict in 2012, will be succeeded by the department's number two, Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer.

Ladaria, a 73-year-old Spaniard who, like the Argentine pope is a member of the Jesuit order, is said by those who know him to be a soft-spoken person who shuns the limelight. Mueller, by contrast, often appears in the media.

"They speak the same language and Ladaria is someone who is meek. He does not agitate the pope and does not threaten him," said a priest who works in the Vatican and knows both Mueller and Ladaria, asking not to be named.

Since his election in 2013, Francis has given hope to progressives who want him to forge ahead with his vision for a more welcoming Church that concentrates on mercy rather than the strict enforcement of rigid rules they see as antiquated.

Mueller is one of several cardinals in the Vatican who have publicly sparred with the pope.

SECOND CONSERVATIVE DEPARTURE IN THREE DAYS

His departure follows the high-profile exit of fellow conservative Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican economy minister who took a leave of absence on Thursday to face charges of historical sexual abuse in his native Australia.

In 2015 both were among 13 cardinals who signed a secret letter to the pope complaining that a meeting of bishops discussing family issues was stacked in favor of liberals. The letter was leaked, embarrassing the signatories.

"Clearly, the pope and Cardinal Mueller have not been on the same page for five years," the priest said.

Mueller has criticized parts of a 2016 papal treatise called "Amoris Laetitia" (The Joy of Love), a cornerstone document of Francis' attempt to make the 1.2 billion-member Church more inclusive and less condemning.

In it, Francis called for a Church that is less strict and more compassionate toward any "imperfect" members, such as those who divorced and remarried, saying "no one can be condemned forever".

Conservatives have concentrated their criticism on the document's opening to Catholics who divorce and remarry in civil ceremonies, without getting Church annulments.

Under Church law they cannot receive communion unless they abstain from sex with their new partner, because their first marriage is still valid in the eyes of the Church and therefore they are seen to be living in an adulterous state of sin.

In the document the pope sided with progressives who had proposed an "internal forum" in which a priest or bishop decide jointly with the individual on a case-by-case basis if he or she can be fully re-integrated and receive communion.

After the document was published Catholic bishops in some countries, including Germany, enacted guidelines on how priests could allow some divorced and remarried Catholics to receive the sacraments.

But Mueller has said there should be no exceptions, making him a hero to conservatives who have made the issue a rallying point for their opposition to Francis.

(Reporting by Philip Pullella; editing by Helen Popper and Jason Neely)


          Pope shakes up Vatican by replacing conservative doctrinal chief    

By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - In a major shake-up of the Vatican's administration on Saturday, Pope Francis replaced Catholicism's top theologian, a conservative German cardinal who has been at odds with the pontiff's vision of a more inclusive Church.

A brief Vatican statement said Cardinal Gerhard Ludwig Mueller's five-year mandate as head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, a department charged with defending Catholic doctrine, would not be renewed.

The position is the most important one that a pope fills in the Vatican hierarchy after the Secretary of State. Most incumbents keep it until they retire, which in Mueller's case would have been in six years.

Mueller, 69, who was appointed by former Pope Benedict in 2012, will be succeeded by the department's number two, Archbishop Luis Francisco Ladaria Ferrer.

Ladaria, a 73-year-old Spaniard who, like the Argentine pope is a member of the Jesuit order, is said by those who know him to be a soft-spoken person who shuns the limelight. Mueller, by contrast, often appears in the media.

"They speak the same language and Ladaria is someone who is meek. He does not agitate the pope and does not threaten him," said a priest who works in the Vatican and knows both Mueller and Ladaria, asking not to be named.

Since his election in 2013, Francis has given hope to progressives who want him to forge ahead with his vision for a more welcoming Church that concentrates on mercy rather than the strict enforcement of rigid rules they see as antiquated.

Mueller is one of several cardinals in the Vatican who have publicly sparred with the pope.

SECOND CONSERVATIVE DEPARTURE IN THREE DAYS

His departure follows the high-profile exit of fellow conservative Cardinal George Pell, the Vatican economy minister who took a leave of absence on Thursday to face charges of historical sexual abuse in his native Australia.

In 2015 both were among 13 cardinals who signed a secret letter to the pope complaining that a meeting of bishops discussing family issues was stacked in favor of liberals. The letter was leaked, embarrassing the signatories.

"Clearly, the pope and Cardinal Mueller have not been on the same page for five years," the priest said.

Mueller has criticized parts of a 2016 papal treatise called "Amoris Laetitia" (The Joy of Love), a cornerstone document of Francis' attempt to make the 1.2 billion-member Church more inclusive and less condemning.

In it, Francis called for a Church that is less strict and more compassionate toward any "imperfect" members, such as those who divorced and remarried, saying "no one can be condemned forever".

Conservatives have concentrated their criticism on the document's opening to Catholics who divorce and remarry in civil ceremonies, without getting Church annulments.

Under Church law they cannot receive communion unless they abstain from sex with their new partner, because their first marriage is still valid in the eyes of the Church and therefore they are seen to be living in an adulterous state of sin.

In the document the pope sided with progressives who had proposed an "internal forum" in which a priest or bishop decide jointly with the individual on a case-by-case basis if he or she can be fully re-integrated and receive communion.

After the document was published Catholic bishops in some countries, including Germany, enacted guidelines on how priests could allow some divorced and remarried Catholics to receive the sacraments.

But Mueller has said there should be no exceptions, making him a hero to conservatives who have made the issue a rallying point for their opposition to Francis.

(Reporting by Philip Pullella; editing by Helen Popper and Jason Neely)


          Comment on Cardinal Mueller Deservedly Kicked Out by Kathleen O'Regan   
Jorge's got a big billionaire group behind him, and they're in a hurry. Many of them are old and want to see the Church destroyed with their own eyes. Of course this guy is a Modernist, sitting on the board of bringing womyn in as Bishops, which of course is already rubber stamped. I don't care what he proposed that was orthodox in 1978, etc., he'll do as he's told I'm sure. Muller tried to play the middle. Worked for a while, but, Jorge's just doing what he's wanted to do for a while. It never works permanently. Now he'll just faaade away.
          Betting on Houston’s Economy, CPPIB to Buy Parkway   
The Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB) is buying 100% ownership of Parkway, Inc., a Houston-based real estate investment trust, for US$ 1.2 billion, or US$ 23.05 per share. CPPIB has continued to expand its real estate portfolio across the United States, seeking stable, high-quality assets. Parkway owns the biggest office property portfolio in Houston, […]
          On Rainy 150th Birthday, Nation Celebrates Meaning of Canada   
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau kicked off celebrations on Saturday to mark the country's 150th birthday amid heavy security as many citizens braved incessant rains and long delays to reach the main site in the nation's capital. About 500,000 people were expected to be in Ottawa for the long-anticipated Canada Day festivities, which features a large outdoor celebration in front of the national Parliament, complete with acrobats, fireworks and musicians including Irish singer Bono and other members of the rock band U2. Trudeau, accompanied by Britain's Prince Charles, shook hands with some of the thousands of revelers who converged on Canada's capital, Ottawa. "Canada is a country made strong not in spite of our differences but because of them," Trudeau told the gathering. "We don't aspire to be a melting pot — indeed, we know true strength and resilience flows through Canadian diversity." Still, in the run-up to the celebrations, some controversy was stirred at home, particularly among First Nations who noted Canada's history of mistreatment of indigenous people. Activists erected a tepee on Parliament Hill on Thursday in protest. On Saturday, about 100 indigenous protesters marched through Toronto, carrying red flags and with some holding the Canadian national flag upside down. Giant duck Some cities are celebrating in more unusual ways. Toronto, Canada's largest city, featured a giant rubber duck floating in its harbor, while Calgary planned a "living flag" composed of people wearing red and white. The yellow duck, which cost C$200,000 ($154,273), including the rent, according to the Globe and Mail, drew criticism from some who described it as a waste of taxpayer money. Security was already ramped up in the days ahead of the celebration, and partygoers contended with road closures and concrete barriers across entrances into Parliament Hill, located in downtown Ottawa. Heavy downpours prompted Ottawa firefighters to pump water off the grounds on Parliament Hill, and the Ottawa Fire Service urged citizens to follow safety instructions. Environment Canada forecast abundant rains for Ottawa on Saturday, casting doubt on some of the planned festivities. National and local police were also out in force, with security uppermost in the minds of many Canadians in the wake of fatal attacks in London, Paris and Germany. Saturday marked the 150th anniversary of the day Canada officially became a country. Britain had ruled it before 1867. "Canada 150 years ago was a project. It was an idea to bring together four colonies with very different historical backgrounds," said Pierre Anctil, history professor at the University of Ottawa. "We should celebrate, but we should not be complacent. It's not a finished project," he added. Telegenic leader The nationwide party came as Canada has been enjoying an unusual amount of interest from the rest of the world, largely because of the election of charismatic and selfie-prone leader Trudeau. "As a society, we must acknowledge and apologize for past wrongs, and chart a path forward for the next 150 years," Trudeau said in a statement ahead of the official kickoff. Indigenous rights group Idle No More called for a national day of action on Saturday, telling supporters to hold rallies and take to social media. Events and installations celebrating the sesquicentennial have already been held across the country this year, with the total cost to the federal government reported to be half a billion dollars. Along with fireworks, free museums and outdoor concerts nationwide on Saturday, more than 50 special ceremonies to swear in new citizens were planned across the country. Twitter users were sharing their favorite Canadian songs and food, along with photos of the preparations under the hashtag #Canada150. Prince Charles and his wife, Camilla, arrived in Canada for an official visit on Thursday. The royals began a three-day tour of Canada with a trip to the northern territory of Nunavut, home to a large number of First Nations and Inuit people. The bash in Ottawa will culminate with a musical fireworks show that is billed as largest-ever such display for Canada Day. It will last for 20 minutes and 17 seconds to commemorate 2017. "One hundred fifty years? Nah. Look at us: Canada is being born today," Trudeau told the crowd soaked in rains.
          Assistant Mgr Trainee-Vallejo, CA 5609 - Walmart - Vallejo, CA   
With fiscal year 2017 revenue of $485.9 billion, Walmart employs approximately 2.3 million associates worldwide. Drives sales in assigned area....
From Walmart - Sat, 24 Jun 2017 10:44:18 GMT - View all Vallejo, CA jobs
          HVAC Refrigeration Technician (Pennsville, NJ area) - Walmart - Pennsville, NJ   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide....
From Walmart - Sat, 04 Mar 2017 00:38:55 GMT - View all Pennsville, NJ jobs
          Vision Center Mgr-WM - Walmart - Bloomington, IL   
With fiscal year 2010 sales of $405 billion, Wal-Mart employs more than 2 million associates worldwide....
From Walmart - Sat, 29 Apr 2017 13:17:40 GMT - View all Bloomington, IL jobs
          Phil Knight's Net Worth Jumps $1.9 Billion After Announcement Of Nike Deal With Amazon   
Nike cofounder Phil Knight's net worth increased $1.9 billion on Friday after Nike announced a deal to sell its products on Amazon.
          Customer Service Representative (Part Time) - Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers - Lethbridge, AB   
Customer Service Representative (Part Time) - (1700005N) Description Ritchie Bros. is a global leader in asset management and disposition, selling billions
From Ritchie Bros. Auctioneers - Tue, 23 May 2017 21:17:35 GMT - View all Lethbridge, AB jobs
          Bicycle Superhighways in Copenhagen Capital Region   
Copenhagen Capital Region Bicycle Superhighway Network
The Bicycle Superhighway Network in Copenhagen Capital Region. Orange: Built. Black: Planned and financed. Dotted: Planned but awaiting financing.

The Capital Region of Denmark is continuing its investment in Supercykelstier - or Bicycle Super Highways. With five new routes completed on May 2, 2017, 115 kilometers have been added to the three initial routes. The goal is to make inter-municipality bike trips easier for the citizens of the region. The super highways are being developed on largely pre-existing cycle tracks.

In the Capital Region, 60% of all trips less than 5 km are made by bike. This falls to 20% for trips more than 5 km. While the region is great for intermodality, connecting bikes with trains, the plans for the Bicycle Super Highway network target increasing the latter number through constructing 28 routes that connect and pass through 23 municipalities. These will give bicycle users newer, wider cycle tracks, better street surfaces, pre-green lights, in addition to better lighting and traffic calming measures where needed. This will create 3 million more bicycle trips a year, which has the potential to reduce the number of car trips by 720,000 a year. This will save the region 34,000 sick days and give a 7.3 billion DKK (€1 billion) economic gain per year.

New routes, building on success
206km of the network will be finished by 2018, out of 467 km in total. The first two routes, Farumruten and Albertslundruten, have experienced a growth in the number of bicycle users of 61% and 34%, respectively, since they were built in 2012. Those two routes, in addition to the third one, Ishøjruten built in 2016, are hub to tip routes connecting Copenhagen Municipality with surrounding municipalities. The new five routes help shape the network; adding not only more hub to tip routes (Allerødruten and Frederikssundruten), but also ring routes (Indre Ringrute connecting Sundby to Østerbro, and Ring 4 ruten from Albertslund to Lyngby-Taarbæk) and a route between outer municipalities (Værløseruten).

The five new Cycle Super Highways have cost 154 million DKK (€20.7 million), while the same road length for motorist highways would cost 17.71 billion DKK (€2.38 billion). Municipalities expect an increase of 1.5 - 2 million bicycle users with the new routes running.


Copenhagenize Design Company's Idea Catalogue for all the municipalities in the Region, as commissioned by the Capital Region in 2014.

Dialogues and Efforts
The project came with challenges on both regional and local scales. Funding the superhighways required a particular approach; normally municipalities are totally financially responsible for building their bicycle infrastructure, but some of the municipalities couldn’t afford building the superhighways or preferred to cut it from their budgets. This caused a threat that more municipalities would leave the project as its rationality depends on its continuity through all municipalities.

The solution that overcome this, so far, has been a 50% state subsidy so that municipalities only have to cover 50% of the costs. However, challenges for this approach will rise again in the future as no municipal funding exists for the project after 2019. The experience of the two initial routes also highlighted responsibilities for the municipalities during the operation of the superhighways; the Gladesaxe and Furesø Municipalities - both on the Farumruten - improved lighting conditions, asking bicycle users what their favored type of lighting was. While the Allerød Municipality focused also on traffic calming measures; building a “2 minus 1” way on Bregnerød Skovvej, a road with one track for motorists and traffic in both directions.

The municipalities have reached an agreement where each of them is responsible for running and maintaining its own part of the route(s) in close dialogue with the others. The success and rationality of a superhighway is achieved by the success of each of its individual parts in different municipalities, which raises the question of what form this superhighway will adapt to in rural, forested or urban areas along the way. It also highlights the importance of bringing all municipalities on board and keeping both the inter-municipality and citizen-government dialogues ongoing.

The Mayor Challenge
In an attempt to convince some of the more sceptical mayors in the outlying municipalities, seven of them were invited to switch to the bike for their transport needs for one month. Their health was measured before and after and, based on existing cost-benefit models, the result was clear. On average they were 11 years younger, based on their improved health.

Copenhagen Bicycle Superhighways projected on Barcelona Copenhagen Bicycle Superhighways projected on London
The Copenhagen Capital Region Bicycle Superhighway Network projected on Barcelona and London. This does not included the vast network of existing cycle tracks in the various municipalities, of which there are over 1000 km.

Copenhagen Bicycle Superhighways projected on Paris Copenhagen Bicycle Superhighways projected on Toronto
The Copenhagen Capital Region Bicycle Superhighway Network projected on Paris and Toronto

Copenhagen Bicycle Superhighways projected on Montreal
The Copenhagen Capital Region Bicycle Superhighway Network projected on Montreal.


For more information about the routes, check the website:
http://supercykelstier.dk/


          UN readies Kosovo exit stragegy   
The United Nations said Wednesday it has started planning its strategy to exit Kosovo as a decision nears on the future status of the ethnic-Albanian majority province.The UN mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) said the measures it was planning would ensure "a smooth and orderly transition" of its responsibilities to international institutions and local authorities."The joint international and local planning work now under way is essential to prepare" for the transition to the future authorities in Kosovo, UNMIK spokesman Neeraj Singh told reporters."Prudent, responsible planning for the transition will now intensify through a series of working groups that will be formed in areas including civil administration, economy, property, governance, security, legal transition, budget and rule of law," he said.Kosovo has been run by the United Nations since mid-1999, after a NATO bombing campaign ousted Serbian forces from the province because of a brutal crackdown against ethnic Albanians.Still formally a part of Serbia, its future status had been due to be resolved by the end of the year but last week was delayed until after Serbian elections on January 21.The United Nations has come under strong criticism for its heavily bureaucratic administration in Kosovo, which is estimated to have cost around 1.3 billion dollars a year.A European Union-led team of diplomats told AFP earlier this month that it had already begun planning the future role for the international community in Kosovo.
          ECB announces new five-year broadcasting deal with Sky Sports and BBC   
REUTERS: The BBC and Sky Sports have agreed a five-year deal to broadcast England's international and first-class matches played at home between 2020-2024, the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said on Friday. The new media rights deal, worth 1.1 billion pounds, will mark the return of live ...
          IOC pleased with Tokyo's budget cuts, says more possible   
International Olympic Committee (IOC) Vice President John Coates said on Friday he was pleased with Tokyo's preparations for the 2020 Summer Games, especially trimming more than US$2 billion (£1.54 billion) from costs, and pledged that organisers would work for still more cuts.
          7/1/2017: News: Apple’s 1p tax blasted   

APPLE is paying just a penny in tax for every pound it earns in Britain. The American tech giant has raked in a £7.5billion fortune from the UK since launching the iPhone here in 2007, says the Treasury. Britain’s corporation tax is set at 19% but...
          7/1/2017: News: ECCLESTONE SON-IN-LAW ROLLS OUT!   

THE billionaire son-in-law of ex-F1 mogul Bernie Ecclestone was evicted from his wife’s £100m home yesterday – in a chauffeur-driven Rolls-Royce. James Stunt, 35, was spotted smoking and looking sour-faced as he left the exclusive Chelsea...
          7/1/2017: Sport: CRICKET IN £1bn BOOST   
ENGLISH cricket lined up a £1.1BILLION jackpot yesterday in a deal that will see the sport shown on the BBC again. They won the rights to show 21 matches every summer from 2020. The agreement will see Sky remain the primary broadcaster after they saw...
          BREAKINGVIEWS-Lessons from Europe’s tricky trio of bank rescues   
"Once is happenstance. Twice is coincidence. The third time it’s enemy action." James Bond’s adversary Auric Goldfinger was not talking about ailing European banks. Nevertheless, investors may find his logic useful when interpreting what three recent rescues say about regulators’ willingness to wind down troubled lenders. On the face of it, the trio have little in common. Creditors of Britain’s Co-operative Bank have agreed to pump 700 million pounds of capital into the ailing institution. Banco Popular of Spain was sold to rival Santander for a euro after suffering a run. Meanwhile the Italian government put up 17 billion euros to cushion the blow from the failure of two Venetian lenders. Nevertheless, there are common themes. The first is that regulators are happy for junior creditors to take the pain. Subordinated bondholders in the Spanish and Italian banks were wiped out; in Co-op’s case their bonds were swapped for equity. The second is that senior bondholders have escaped
          EU proposes new pension product to boost private savings   
The European Commission proposed on Thursday establishing a new pan-European pension product to increase private savings for old age and boost the growth of an EU industry currently worth some 700 billion euros ($800 billion). The measure is part of policy efforts to defuse a demographic time bomb that could hit the ageing continent over the next 50 years when the ratio of retirees to working-age people is estimated to double. As EU states' stretched public finances are already struggling to cover the current levels of pensions, the European Commission is trying to encourage personal savings to make up for lower pensions. The proposed Pan-European Personal Pension Product (PEPP), if approved by EU states and the EU parliament, will give consumers a new savings option and is expected to increase the number of people subscribing to a personal pension, the Commission said. Currently only 27 percent of working-age EU citizens have bought personal pensions, which complement occupational
          About That Tax Cut for the Rich   

On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell came to terms with reality and announced that he would delay the health care vote he had been planning to hold this week. Since then, Republican members of Congress have been negotiating terms, trying to strike a health care agreement before flying back to their home states on Friday to screw around for 10 days. Though they were making progress by Thursday morning in narrowing the options, senators still had to get through that little part where they make impossible decisions on the issues that have bitterly divided them.

Some of the more obvious tweaks have been made. Senate holdouts representing states hollowed out by the opioid crisis—West Virginia Sen. Shelley Moore Capito, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman, and others—are likely to get the full $45 billion in grant funding that they’ve been seeking all along, Politico reported Wednesday night. The bill will also likely be adjusted to allow people to use their health savings accounts to pay for premiums, something conservatives fought for in this bill.

But these changes still fall within the realm of tinkering. Capito, for instance, has said that the opioid money would not be enough—she wants the stingy long-term growth rate for the bill’s Medicaid caps raised, too. That’s something conservatives would be loath to do.

A lot of senators, including many in the rank-and-file, still want to see the bill’s refundable tax credits for individuals boosted. And the most conservative wing of the party, including Utah Sen. Mike Lee and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, want more market deregulation. The “grand bargain,” then, still amounts to conservatives giving way on Medicaid cuts and other spending, while moderates give way on market regulation.

Here’s what that might look like, per the current discussions.

The Congressional Budget Office analysis, you’ll recall, left McConnell about $188 billion in additional funds to spread around to buy votes. The opioid crisis funds and HSA changes could exhaust about half of that. If senators wanted to substantially increase the tax credits to those with lower and middle incomes—or even dependents on employer plans—that could exhaust the savings, and a new stream of revenue would be needed.

That’s why some senators are now talking more seriously about keeping the Affordable Care Act’s 3.8 percent net investment tax, as Bloomberg first wrote Wednesday afternoon. This is not a new conversation: Since December, there’s been a debate over whether to keep any of the ACA’s taxes to help fund elements of replacement legislation. Opinions have varied. But the House-passed American Health Care Act chose to repeal nearly all of the taxes and finance the bill through Medicaid cuts. And the Senate kept that framework. The very correct depiction of Trumpcare as “cutting Medicaid to finance tax cuts for the wealthy” has caused a lot of political headaches for the party, and now some senators are having second thoughts.

South Dakota Sen. Mike Rounds said Wednesday that he wanted the party to reconsider ditching the investment tax, which only affects individuals making more than $200,000 and families making more than $250,000, and using that money to bump up the individual tax credits.

“If we did that, that would be another $172 billion that could then be utilized to perhaps offset some of the areas in which people have expressed concern,” Rounds said, “or as a way to allow for individuals who have never been helped by Obamacare, in the group market.”

Rounds has always been receptive to keeping the investment tax. He now has more support—and more importantly, it appears that this wouldn’t be a deal-breaker for conservatives. Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson, a conservative holdout, said on Thursday that he could live with keeping the Obamacare tax. Cruz said that he doesn’t want to keep it but didn’t answer when asked whether it would be a deal-breaker. Rep. Mark Meadows, the chairman of the conservative House Freedom Caucus, told reporters on Thursday that keeping the tax wouldn’t be a deal-breaker in his chamber either.

The conservative holdouts would demand a price, though: Give us deregulation, and we’ll stomach the losses.

Cruz has been selling one particular deregulatory proposal hard over the last week, which leaders are now taking seriously as something they’ll have to engage with to get conservative votes. As my colleague Jordan Weissmann wrote Thursday, the amendment would allow insurers within a state to sell cheaper plans that don’t comply with the ACA’s regulations so long as they also sell one plan that does.

One might call this “the MacArthur amendment by other means.” The MacArthur amendment, which sealed conservatives’ support for the House bill, allowed states to waive the ACA regulation, called community rating, that barred insurers from charging sicker people more. Eliminating that regulation would bring down premiums for healthier people while sequestering those with pre-existing conditions in high-risk pools. The Cruz amendment, essentially, would embed the high-risk pool within the traditional market: All the healthy, younger people would sign up for the cheaper, noncompliant plan, causing an increase in prices for the regulated plans as only sicker people enroll in them. In other words, it could undermine protections for people with pre-existing conditions, much as experts fear would happen under the MacArthur amendment. Cruz believes that the federal subsidies and stabilization money would be enough to ensure that premiums remain within reach for those most in need of care. But his more moderate colleagues, after witnessing the shellacking the House bill got with the MacArthur amendment, are leery of such a move. And yet South Dakota Sen. John Thune, a member of the Senate leadership, said leaders could consider it if there was a way to ensure it didn’t unravel markets. (There’s also, as with all regulatory changes considered under the reconciliation process, concerns about whether the Senate parliamentarian would allow it.)

Again, senators have about 24 hours to reach an agreement under McConnell’s latest artificially imposed deadline. That means that senators who have been fighting for the last two months will have 24 hours to miraculously come together around an agreement where conservatives abandon some of their deeply held priors on tax cuts and spending while moderates assent to market reforms that could undermine protections for those with pre-existing conditions.

Maybe they’ll need the weekend.


          China Protests U.S. Arms Sale to Taiwan   
China on Friday strongly protested a United States plan to sell $1.4 billion worth of arms to Taiwan and demanded that the deal be canceled. Chinese foreign ministry spokesman Lu Kang said the sale would severely damage China's sovereignty and security interests and run counter to Washington's commitment to a "one-China" policy. ... The US State Department approved the arms sale on Thursday, the first such deal with Taiwan since President Trump took office. ... China considers Taiwan to be part of its territory and has long opposed any arms sales to the self-governing island by foreign entities. It insists on eventual reunification, through force if necessary.
          Confusion And Incivility In Our World   



Volume XXXVI Issue VII July 2017
Last Trumpet Ministries, PO Box 806, Beaver Dam, WI 53916
Phone: 920-887-2626 Internet: http://www.lasttrumpetministries.org




"The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings."


Jeremiah 17:9-10

"O generation of vipers, how can ye, being evil, speak good things? for out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh. A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things."


Matthew 12:34-35

"Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment."

Matthew 22:37-38

"For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints."
I Corinthians 14:33



In this issue of the Last Trumpet Newsletter, we will examine a world run amok with confusion, chaos, and incivility. At this present time, there are throngs of people walking about in a state of confusion, seemingly uncertain of many things, including something as simple and basic as one's gender. In Genesis 1:27 we read, "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them." Yet, today we live in a world where some women want to be men, some men want to be women, and some people do not want to be either man or woman. Those who refuse to be called either male or female are now referred to as "non-binary" human beings. (1)

In June 2017 it was announced that Oregon will become the first state in the United States to allow individuals to choose a third gender for their state issued identification or driver's license. On these identification cards, male will be marked with the traditional M, female will be marked with an F, and the third "non-binary" gender will be marked with an X. (2) The new policy came about largely on the efforts of a man named Jamie Shupe who became the first person in the United States to be legally pronounced neither male nor female in 2016. Shupe had previously tried to transition to the female gender but eventually decided he did not want to be female either. "I only became a female because I had no other choice. All of the systems channeled me in that direction, both medical and government, until I took a stand against that. It wasn't until I got to Portland [Oregon] and got exposure to the queer community that I then understood how wrong all what had been done to me was," Shupe stated. Despite Shupe's claim to be neither male nor female, he seems to acknowledge that he was born with a male body. "Turning a male body, especially an older male body into female, I think it really sets the stage for people committing suicide. I mean you had to maintain a hyper-feminine appearance 24-7 or you were back to getting called sir," Shupe lamented. (3) It is my personal belief that this individual is being tormented by evil spirits. Shupe even uses the pronouns "they," "them," and "their" as personal identifiers which suggests that there is more than one evil spirit involved. Needless to say, Shupe does not think highly of Christians. "All the Bible-thumpers believe that there's only males and females according to the Bible. I'm the person who destroyed that in the United States," Shupe boasted. (4) The new policy will take effect in Oregon on July 1, 2017. (5)

Following Oregon's lead the American capital city of Washington, D.C., also announced that they will begin issuing identification cards and driver's licenses with a non-binary gender option on June 26, 2017. (6) A similar change in policy might soon be implemented in the state of New York where New York Assistant Speaker of the House Felix Ortiz has introduced legislation that if passed would allow a non-binary gender designation on driver's licenses and identification cards. "Our governmental agencies should reflect the society we live in. While this change may seem small, it is a step forward to change the rigid mindset often faced by many today," Ortiz stated. (7)

Why are a growing number of men finding it so painful to be part of the male gender? In recent decades, we have seen an effort from the liberal left to villainize manhood. We are often told that men are responsible for all of the world's woes and that being a masculine man is a bad thing. Leftists frequently refer to this so-called problem as "toxic masculinity." (8) Consider the words of the famous singer and actress known as Bette Midler who posted a message online in response to a recent terrorist attack in London. In this message, Midler wrote: "More sorrow and grief at the hands of madmen. Men and religion are worthless." (9) Instructors at college campuses will often preach against masculinity too. For example, the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill published a website in 2016 which asked, "How has the concept of masculinity contributed to the perpetration of violence in our society?" (10) It was also reported that students at Gettysburg College in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, were subjected to a mandatory orientation video which declares that the three most damaging words a boy can hear are "be a man." (11) Is it any wonder that some men are so desperate to not be members of the male gender?



Oddly enough, despite the fact that the male gender is so often disparaged, some women in these modern times have decided that they want to be men. This includes a woman living in Portland, Oregon, who claims to be a transgendered male. She has undergone testosterone treatments to deepen her voice and enable her to grow facial hair while presenting herself as a very masculine person. Yet, she is pregnant and will soon have a biological child with her homosexual husband. The couple has two adopted children, one of which claims to be very excited about her "dad's" pregnancy. "What I was thinking about a baby that my dad's having, it's really, really fun, it's really, really exciting," the child said. (12)

We now live in a bewildering world where we are told that transgender men can give birth to babies, and a growing number of people are so tormented that they do not want to be the gender they were given by God, nor any gender at all. This is a spirit of confusion at work, and we know that God is not the author of confusion. People are accustomed to being told that they can be whatever they want, and they are often advised to follow their hearts. Yet, the Scriptures tell us in Jeremiah 17:9, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?" In like manner, Jesus tells us in Matthew 12:35, "A good man out of the good treasure of the heart bringeth forth good things: and an evil man out of the evil treasure bringeth forth evil things." It is for this reason that we must surrender our lives to God and give Him our hearts. For as we read in Matthew 22:37, "Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind." If you have not yet repented of your sins and given your heart to God, I urge you to do so now. In so doing, you feel find that God enables His people to overcome all the confusion of this world.

USA: A Hotbed Of Incivility

On June 19, 2017, CBS News published an article with a headline that declares, "Americans say U.S. political debate is increasingly uncivil." (13) Of course, if you have interacted with people in the United States at all lately, you do not need a poll published by a news outlet to declare this blatantly obvious fact. The election of Donald Trump as President of the United States last year divided the nation, and bitterness has been festering in this country ever since that time. Despite the fact that it has been nearly one half of a year since Trump was inaugurated as President, the ugliness has not subsided.

In recent weeks we have seen numerous celebrities and public figures insinuate or otherwise suggest that the current President of the United States should be assassinated. For example, in March 2017 the rapper known as Snoop Dogg released a music video which portrayed him firing a toy gun at a clown named Ronald Klump who strongly resembled the President. Speaking of his video, Snoop Dogg was quoted as saying, "I don't ever expect or look for a reaction. I just put it out because like it's something that's missing. Anytime I drop something, I'm trying to fill in a void. I feel like it's a lot of people making cool records, having fun, partying, but nobody's dealing with the real issue with this… clown as president." (14)

Perhaps the vilest of all celebrities in Hollywood is the so-called comedienne Kathy Griffin. In 2007 Griffin made headlines after she mocked Jesus during her acceptance speech at the Emmy Awards. During this speech Griffin said, "A lot of people come up here and thank Jesus for this award. I want you to know that no one had less to do with this award than Jesus." She then made a remark aimed at Jesus that is so blasphemous that I cannot even publish it in this newsletter. Finally, she told the audience, "This award is my god now." (15) Griffin, who once made a television special entitled "Straight to Hell," (16) stirred controversy again in late May 2017 when she published a photo of herself holding a fake and bloodied decapitated head, which very strongly resembled the head of Donald Trump. The grotesque image was so offensive that even liberal public figures such as Chelsea Clinton condemned it. After calling the photo "vile and wrong," Clinton said, "It is never funny to joke about killing a president." (17) First Lady Melania Trump was also deeply offended. "As a mother and a wife, and a human being, that photo is very disturbing. When you consider some of the atrocities happening in the world today, a photo opportunity like this is simply wrong and makes you wonder about the mental health of the person who did it." (18) After being fired by CNN and losing at least one endorsement deal, Griffin apologized. "I sincerely apologize… I'm a comic. I cross the line. I move the line, then I cross it. I went too far. The image is too disturbing; I understand how it offends people. It wasn't funny. I get it. … I beg for your forgiveness," Griffin claimed. (19) Days later, Griffin blamed Trump for her downfall rather than admitting that she was at fault for her actions. "I don't think I'm going to have a career after this. I'm going to be honest, he broke me. A sitting president of the United States and his grown children, and the First Lady, personally, I feel, are trying to ruin my life forever," she lamented. (20) I suspect that the same evil spirits who once inspired a woman named Herodias, who was the wife of Herod, to demand the head of John the Baptist are now working in Kathy Griffin.

Actor Johnny Depp has also hinted that perhaps President Trump should be put to death. Speaking at a film festival in Glastonbury, England, on June 22, 2017, Depp told the audience regarding Trump, "It is just a question - I'm not insinuating anything. By the way, this is going to be in the press. It will be horrible. I like that you are all a part of it. When was the last time an actor assassinated a president? I want to clarify, I am not an actor. I lie for a living. However, it has been a while and maybe it is time." (21) Depp apologized the next day saying, "I apologize for the bad joke I attempted last night in poor taste about President Trump. It did not come out as intended, and I intended no malice. I was only trying to amuse, not to harm anyone." (22)

Sadly, the bitterness that is so prevalent in our country today does sometimes result in violent acts. Such was the case on June 14, 2017, when a gunman targeted Republican lawmakers during a baseball practice session in Alexandria, Virginia. Four individuals were wounded in this assault, including Steve Scalise, who is the majority whip for the United States House of Representatives. (23) The shooter, who was identified as James T. Hodgkinson of Belleville, Illinois, was a fervent supporter of former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders. He was shot and killed by police officers on the scene. According to media reports, Hodgkinson often posted messages on the Internet regarding his hatred for President Trump and the Republicans, even writing at one point, "It's time to destroy Trump and Co." (24)

Donald Trump is a polarizing figure to be sure, and as he is human, he is certainly prone to make mistakes. Whether you like or dislike the President, the bitterness, strife, and incivility on display in our land is appalling and shameful. I believe there are forces at work who hope to see the United States ripped to shreds because a nation in a weakened state is much easier to manipulate and control. Meanwhile, the folks who publish the Global Peace Index have lowered the ranking of the United States by eleven spaces since last year. According to their reckoning, the United States is now the 114th most peaceful nation in the world. "The U.S. deterioration is primarily driven by the growing intensity of internal conflict within the country, which was partly seen in the divisive 2016 Presidential election, as well as increases in the perceptions of criminality across American society," the latest edition of the index report said. (25)

The Leading Edge Of A Technology Tsunami

As I study the news and read of the advancements of technology, it can be a struggle to keep up with all that is happening. I cannot help but marvel at how quickly technology is developing and how rapidly our world is changing. With the advent of the Internet, more and more people today are connected to a global system that is certainly advantageous in some ways, while frightening and invasive in others. According to a report issued by Pew Research Center in September 2016, only 13 percent of Americans today do not use the Internet. The majority of those who still live in an offline world are senior citizens aged 65 years or older. Conversely, only 1 percent of Americans aged 18 to 29 do not use the Internet. (26) Amongst this group of young people, Pew reports that 36 percent report being online "almost constantly," while 50 percent of them go online multiple times each day. (27) Even as more Americans connect to the Internet on a daily basis, traditional forms of media are dying out. In June 2017, it was reported that the circulation of daily newspapers in the United States has fallen to its lowest rate in 77 years. (28)

The Internet has also dramatically changed the shopping habits of Americans. Whereas most purchases were once made in brick and mortar retail locations, more shoppers today are opting to conduct their purchases online. As a result, a multitude of retailers today are facing extinction. In April 2017 Business Insider reported that more than 3,200 stores are closing throughout the United States. This figure includes 552 RadioShack electronics stores, 400 Payless shoe stores, 240 Family Christian bookstores, 138 J.C. Penney department stores, 108 Kmart mass merchandiser stores, 70 Staples office supply stores, and 70 CVS drugstores. (29)

Even as retail stores continue to shutter and shopping malls become abandoned, the online store known as Amazon.com is thriving. In fact, this online entity that started as a book store in 1995 has grown to such an extent that 52 percent of all books in the United States, whether in paper or electronic form, are sold by Amazon, and a full 43 percent of all e-commerce transactions are facilitated through the company. (30) The online behemoth has continued to grow over the years, and in recent days the company has sought expansion beyond the confines of the online world. In June 2017 it was announced that Amazon had purchased the grocery store chain known as Whole Foods for 13.7 billion dollars. This development has raised fears that Amazon will eliminate many employment positions at Whole Foods, opting instead to use robots and automation to cut operational costs. "Amazon's brutal vision for retail is one where automation replaces good jobs. Sadly, the hard-working men and women who work at Whole Foods now face an uncertain future," said Marc Perrone, who is president of the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union. (31) While Amazon has not announced any plans to cut jobs at Whole Foods, it is interesting to note that the company announced plans in 2016 to open a futuristic grocery store known as Amazon Go. This store, which recently opened in Seattle, Washington, is entirely cashless. To shop, customers must use a smartphone equipped with a special program. As you enter this store, you scan your phone, and as you shop, the store automatically tracks what you put in your shopping cart or if you put something back. When your shopping is completed, you simply walk out the door, with no need to check out with a cashier. The purchases are automatically billed to your Amazon account. (32) It is not far-fetched to think that Amazon may have similar plans for their Whole Foods stores.

While Amazon makes plans to launch their automated grocery stores, Sam's Club locations in the United States already allow customers to use a similar automated process. The retailer now offers a downloadable program for smartphones called "Scan and Go." As customers browse the store, they can simply scan the barcodes on products with their smartphone, and when they are ready to check out they use the phone to pay for the purchases as well. (33)

Additionally, the iconic fast food chain known as McDonald's has announced plans to replace cashiers at 2,500 locations with automated ordering kiosks. Since the announcement, McDonald's has attempted to assuage fears that the rollout of automated kiosks will result in a loss of employment for the company's current workers. "Our CEO, Steve Easterbrook, has said on many occasions that self-order kiosks in McDonald's restaurants are not a labor replacement. They provide an opportunity to transition back-of-the-house positions to more customer service rules such as concierges and table service where they truly engage with guests and enhance the dining experience," said a spokeswoman for McDonald's. (34) I cannot help but be skeptical of McDonald's claim that these kiosks will not result in a loss of jobs. Do they really believe that McDonald's customers want table service? It is far more likely that McDonald's is making this change to counter the rise in minimum wage in various areas around the country. For example, the minimum wage in San Francisco, California, has been increased to fifteen dollars an hour. Following this increase, sixty restaurants have closed in San Francisco since September 2016. (35)

It is logical that automation will result in a massive loss of jobs. "If it is doing the same thing over and over again, and it doesn't require analysis, it's going to be automated. We're on the leading edge of a technology tsunami," stated Professor Ed Hess of the Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia. He further went on to say, "The question is, is this automation going to produce enough new jobs that technology itself can't do?" (36)

Another casualty of mankind's technological advancements could soon be paper money. I have noticed on numerous occasions that cashiers at grocery stores in this area are often startled when I pay with cash. On one occasion a cashier at our Piggly Wiggly store assumed I would be paying with a credit or debit card and curtly informed me that my payment "didn't go through." It was at this point that I handed her the cash that I had been holding in my hand to which she reacted with a noticeable surprise. Reactions like these are an indicator that the United States may soon go the way of nations such as Sweden where cash is seldom used. Here let it be noted that about 2,000 people in Sweden have already received a microchip implant in their hands. According to a report by The Independent, the state-owned Swedish rail company known as SJ is now allowing passengers to pay their fares with these embedded microchips. Speaking of this development, a spokesperson for SJ was quoted as saying, "As north Europe's largest train operator and one of the top 10 digital companies in Sweden, we are at the forefront of digital developments. This is an interesting project that gives us ideas of how to enhance the digital customer experience even further." In another remark, the spokesperson said regarding the microchip, "It's just a matter of days before everyone has it." (37)

The Battle For Life Is Raging

Abortion is the most heinous of all sins committed in the United States, and it happens every day. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, for every 1,000 live births in the year 2013, 200 babies were slaughtered using this barbaric practice. (38) Although abortion rates have been falling in some areas, there are still many determined Democrats and liberals who vow to continue fighting for their "right" to murder babies. In June 2017 the governor of the state of Delaware, John Carney, signed a bill that allows women in his state to abort babies in the womb at up to nine months of gestation, removing all restrictions. (39) This is truly disheartening, but thankfully there are efforts being made elsewhere to stem the tide of innocent blood.

On June 22, 2017, the liberal news outlet known as the Huffington Post published a panicked headline which declares, "Republicans Might Actually Defund Planned Parenthood This Time." (40) The article is referring to the new Senate healthcare bill, which if passed, would prevent Medicaid patients from accessing Planned Parenthood's services for one year. (41) While this is a step in the right direction, the defunding of Planned Parenthood should be permanent. Nevertheless, when news broke of this possibility, Planned Parenthood president Cecile Richards threw a fit. "It's as bad as we thought. The text of the Senate bill was just released, and now there's no denying the truth: This bill would devastate Planned Parenthood patients and leave millions of Americans without access to care." (42) Of course, what Richards really means by "access to care" is access to abortion, because that is the so-called service that they primarily perform. Planned Parenthood murdered 328,348 babies in 2015. (43)

Remarkably, the United States opposed a recent United Nations resolution that called for greater access to "safe abortions" under the guise of preventing violence against women. After hearing the resolution presented by Canada, United States First Secretary to the United Nations Jason Mack told the Council, which was assembled in Geneva, Switzerland, "We do not recognize abortion as a method of family planning, nor do we support abortion in our reproductive health assistance." (44) It is my hope and prayer that efforts to stop abortion in the United States will be successful.

In closing, I urge every reader of this newsletter to continue to watch and pray as we see the condition of this world deteriorate. The mess is not pretty. However, we have the promise of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, who tells us in Matthew 28:20, "Lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." Jesus also promises us in John 14:18, "I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you." No matter what happens, God is always with His people!

Thank you all for your kind support of this newsletter. We could not do what we do without your help. Please keep us in prayer as we endeavor to continue this ministry during these challenging days. As always, our team of intercessors is ready and willing to pray for you or any prayer requests you may have. Please do not hesitate to send them our way. Each request is always given individual attention. Grace and peace be unto you in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.


Samuel David Meyer

Acknowledgements

01. USA Today, June 21, 2017, By William Cummings, http://usatoday.com.
02. Ibid.
03. Ibid.
04. Ibid.
05. Ibid.
06. The Washington Post, June 21, 2017, By Rachel Siegel, http://washingtonpost.com.
07. NBC News, June 20, 2017, By Mary Emily O'Hara, http://nbcnews.com.
08. National Review, June 7, 2017, By Ben Shapiro, http://nationalreview.com.
09. Ibid.
10. The College Fix, November 2, 2017, By William Nardi, http://thecollegefix.com.
11. Ibid.
12. Life Site News, June 20, 2017, By Claire Chretien, http://lifesitenews.com.
13. CBS News, June 19, 2017, By CBS News, http://cbsnews.com.
14. The Washington Post, March 15, 2017, By Elahe Izadi, http://washingtonpost.com.
15. Reuters News Service, September 11, 2007, By Reuters News Service, http://reuters.com.
16. Bravo TV, http://bravotv.com.
17. National Public Radio, May 31, 2017, By Miles Parks, http://npr.org.
18. Ibid.
19. Ibid.
20. Time Magazine, June 2, 2017, By Melissa Chan, http://time.com.
21. The Guardian, June 23, 2017, By Press Association, http://theguardian.com.
22. Fox News, June 23, 2017, By Fox News, http://foxnews.com.
23. The New York Times, June 14, 2017, By Michael D. Shear, Adam Goldman, and Emily Cochrane, http://nytimes.com.
24. Ibid.
25. The Washington Times, June 1, 2017, By Jennifer Harper, http://washingtontimes.com.
26. Pew Research Center, September 7, 2016, By Monica Anderson, http://pewresearch.org.
27. Pew Research Center, December 8, 2015, By Andrew Perrin, http://pewresearch.org.
28. Newsmax, June 1, 2017, By Cathy Burke, http://newsmax.com.
29. Business Insider, April 17, 2017, By Hayley Peterson, http://businessinsider.com.
30. USA Today, June 26, 2017, By Elizabeth Weise, http://usatoday.com.
31. The Washington Post, June 16, 2017, By Danielle Paquette, http://washingtonpost.com.
32. Business Insider, June 16, 2017, By Kif Leswing, http://businessinsider.com.
33. Chicago Tribune, December 12, 2016, By Lauren Zumbach, http://chicagotribune.com.
34. CNBC, June 22, 2017, By Tae Kim, http://cnbc.com.
35. The Fresno Bee, June 13, 2017, By Jeremy Bagott, http://fresnobee.com.
36. New York Post, April 30, 2017, By Ed Zwirn, http://nypost.com.
37. The Independent, June 16, 2017, By Helen Coffey, http://independent.co.uk.
38. Centers For Disease Control and Prevention, http://cdc.gov.
39. The Christian Post, June 20, 2017, By Jay Gotera, http://christianpost.com.
40. The Huffington Post, June 22, 2017, By Laura Bassett, http://huffingtonpost.com.
41. Ibid.
42. Life Site News, June 22, 2017, By Steven Ertelt, http://lifesitenews.com.
43. Ibid.
44. Reuters News Service, June 22, 2017, By Stephanie Nebehay, Geneva, Switzerland, http://reuters.com.

To learn more about the history of our ministry and our founder, Pastor David J. Meyer, please visit http://pastormeyer.org.

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Source



          Comment on Three Books on Marxist Political Economy (Pt 6) by Boffy   
Noa, I did make clear that I was talking about the functions of money as tokens, the discussion of the distinction between hoards and reserves is one you have focussed on. I initially wrote, "The role of money tokens as means of circulation, or means of payment, and even as a store of value similarly has no necessity of the equivalent amount of gold, silver or copper being present, either in the country, or in bank vaults as a reserve. All that is required is that the tokens issued, be they gold, silver or copper coins, or paper notes, are only issued in proportion to the amount of gold, silver or copper they purport to represent, in other words, that they represent that equal amount of value, that equal amount of social labour-time." However, just for clarification, your comments about hoards, and the quote from Capital I, also reflect a further misunderstanding on your part. In the quote you give, Marx talks about the amount of gold and silver being held as hoards in a country being greater than the amount of coin in circulation. The only reason he talks in that vein at that point is that the discussion of credit money and currency is not properly developed until Volume III. He could just as easily have said that the amount of notes and coins held as hoards is always greater than the amount of notes and coins in circulation as currency. The reason being that is discussion of hoarding here is about the need for pools of money or money tokens to be held in excess of what is immediately required for means of circulation and means of payment, because what is required for these functions continually rises and falls, and its necessary to keep these hoards into which this excess currency can return and out of which it can flow when required. I have described it in dealing with that discussion as a bit like the pools kept near to canals, so that at one time the water flows out of the pool when the canal level drops, and into which excess canal water flows, when it is too high. Understood properly as Marx describes that function your objection about long term hoarding of notes and coins becomes irrelevant. In fact, in Britain, the Bank of England has noted recently that around £1 billion of its note issuance has disappeared into hoards, as people have felt that their money was safer under their bed. In 2000, when the Euro was introduced, there was an outflow of huge amounts of currency held in hoards across Europe, not just from criminal activity, but also from people who had built up cash hoards from various forms of minor tax dodging. Much of it flowed into the purchase of Spanish Villas, which was one reason those prices rose sharply at the time. The Central Bank itself holds hoards in the form of notes and coins, as discussed by Marx in Capital III, and they perform exactly this same purpose, as Marx describes, i.e. when the currency circulation requires more notes and coins, the Bank reduces its hoard, and when it requires less it takes notes back in. There would be little point actually destroying notes taken out of circulation (unless they were actually worn out, which the introduction of polymer notes is intended to address) only then to have to print more notes a few days later, when the circulation required more currency.
          ABC settles lawsuit for "pink slime" fake news story (no replies)   
“Pink slime” defamation case settled
(Elk Point, SD) -- The $1.9 billion defamation lawsuit between a South Dakota meat processor and ABC News and reporter Jim Avila has been settled. According to the Union County Clerk, an agreement has been reached between the two parties.

In a released statement, Beef Products Inc, said: “We are extraordinarily pleased to have reached a settlement of our lawsuit against ABC and Jim Avila. While this has not been an easy road to travel, it was necessary to begin rectifying the harm we suffered as a result of what we believed to be biased and baseless reporting in 2012. Through this process, we have again established what we all know to be true about Lean Finely Textured Beef: it is beef, and is safe, wholesome and nutritious. This agreement provides us with a strong foundation on which to grow the business, while allowing us to remain focused on achieving the vision of the Roth and BPI family.”

ABC News also released a statement: “ABC has reached an amicable resolution of its dispute with the makers of “lean finely textured beef.” Throughout this case, we have maintained that our reports accurately presented the facts :pinnochioand views of knowledgeable people :pinnochioabout this product. :pinnochio Although we have concluded that continued litigation of this case is not in the Company’s interests, we remain committed to the vigorous pursuit of truth :pinnochioand the consumer’s right to know about the products they purchase.”

The trial ended after four weeks at the Union County courthouse in Elk Point, South Dakota, to a 16-person jury. The amount of the settlement has not been disclosed. The defamation lawsuit brought by a South Dakota meat processor against ABC News began June 5. BPI was suing ABC News claiming the show caused the company to lose money after news reports in 2012 referred to their product as “pink slime.”

:shrug:Even when they have to pay the price for manufacturing fake news, they still won't publically admit they did anything wrong. :shrug:
          Withdrawal From the UN Gains Logic as a Reform In the Era of Trump   
Liberals shrieked last week when President Trump proposed cutting American funding for the United Nations by 50 percent. Nr, Trump dismisses the United Nations as a "waste of time and money." That's the least of it.American taxpayers bankroll the organization to the tune of $10 billion a year. Our hard-earned money perpetuates an organization that validates the most savage human-rights abusers on the globe, regularly votes against America and targets America's ally Israel for extinction.The...
          Gaming M&A hit $4B in 2012   
Digi-Capital investment bank released a research report about global gaming industry recently. The report noted that last year global gaming market recorded an all-time high M&A volume at up to US$ 4 billion, up 18% from 2011’s US$ 3.4 billion. However, transactional volume dropped 27 percent with fewer blockbuster deals being made over the course […]
          Work: Is Rihanna Dating A Billionaire?   
Rihanna‘s pool buddy has been identified, and he’s got an impressive profile. The Diamonds siren was spotted kissing a handsome mystery man while splashing around in Spain over the weekend, which would explain why she was a no-show for the BET Awards. But who is Rihanna’s possible new boo? TMZ.com reports that he is none […]
          Orange County pays off $1-billion bankruptcy debt   

Orange County has paid off the last of $1 billion worth of bonds it raised to haul itself out of bankruptcy.

The Orange County Register says, after 22 years, the county on Saturday delivered the final payment to bondholders.

With interest, the repayment totaled about $1.6 billion.

The county still...


          Health risks of Mobile Usage   
Mobile phone has become an integral part of life in today’s lifestyle but besides providing various benefits it also poses numerous health risks. The total number of mobile subscriptions in the world comes to an estimated figure of around 5 billion out of which 303 million subscribers were alone reported in USA in the year 2010. Around 66% of the users take their phones during lunch and 65% has a feeling that they will become better parents if they have a cell phone. 
Read more »
          Service Desk Technician II or III   
OH-Columbus, Corporate One Federal Credit Union is one of the nation’s largest and most progressive corporate credit union with more than $5.5 billion in assets under management and serving nearly 900 credit unions nationwide. We offer credit unions a full, innovative menu of payments, investments and funding services to help credit unions serve their members. Employment with Corporate One includes being a par
          Rams stadium opening delayed a year   
Record winter rainfall in Southern California pushes back scheduled opening of Stan Kroenke's $2.6 billion Inglewood stadium until 2020.
          Here is how popular Dhinchak Pooja is on Youtube   

[India], July 1 (ANI): Dhinchak Pooja is the latest viral sensation on Youtube and social media in India. After viral hits like 'Swag Wali Topi', 'Daaru', 'Selfie Maine Leli Aaj', she recently went live with 'Dilon Ka Shooter'.

Here is a look at her popularity on Youtube and her earnings from her videos as per Vidooly's data-

? Dhinchak Pooja's youtube channel currently receives an average of 2.65 million views per month.

? Across her 12 videos she has accumulated almost 29 million views. While in the last 30 days alone views on her channel have shot up by 59%. In May alone her videos chalked up to 16 million views while in June they have reached 10 million views.

? While she has over 118,000 subscribers on Youtube, she continues to add an average of 2630 subscribers a day. In the last 30 days alone she has added 59,834 subscribers and registered a growth of 51% in subscribers.

? While three of her videos have crossed the hallowed million views mark she continues to pull in over 600,000 views a day given her recent video "Dilon Ka Shooter" which has crossed four million views already.

? In terms of demography majority of her viewers are male with 89.74% of the views while 10.12% of views are by women viewers.

Youtube is the most popular video sharing platform in the world with over 1.3 billion users. With over 300 million smartphone users in India, Youtube reaches over 180 million users in India alone.

With the rise in affordable devices, faster data networks and a growing base of content creators, content creators have ample opportunities to reach out to wider audiences with their unique content. (ANI)


          News In Brief    

President Francesco Cossiga asked Prime Minister Bettino Craxi to form a new government yesterday, four days after he resigned as prime minister. Politicians expect him to resurrect the same coalition that fell apart over the Achille Lauro hijacking. Hopes for a solution to the latest of many government crises in postwar Italy apparently boosted prices on the Milan Stock Exchange. Shares regained two-thirds of the 6 percent they lost after Mr. Craxi's resignation.

The success of Craxi's effort appeared to depend largely on his talks with Defense Minister Giovanni Spadolini's Republican Party, which precipitated the collapse by withdrawing its three ministers from the Cabinet.

All previous partners but the Republicans have said they would join a new Craxi government. The Republicans set conditions that include closer consultation during times of crisis and clear definition of foreign policy, particularly on the US and the Mideast.

The Republicans quit over the decision to release PLO official Muhammad Abbas, whom the US accuses of masterminding the hijacking.

Mr. Cossiga's decision followed three days of consultations with leaders of the five political parties in the former coalition.

Craxi's aides said they expect the makeup of a new government to emerge by Thursday, when Craxi is to go to New York for a meeting of Western leaders called by President Reagan to discuss his November summit with the Soviet leader, Mikhail S. Gorbachev.

Politicians saw the Republican Party's move as a face-saving gesture in response to widespread criticism by the other coalition partners of its decision to quit. Public opinion polls showed general approval of how the government handled the hijacking.

Antigovernment protesters fired on in downtown Manila

Police yesterday fired on antigovernment demonstrators in downtown Manila who resisted police efforts to disperse them. Hospitals said a 17-year-old demonstrator was killed, and the official news agency said 27 people were wounded. The clash came after 3,000 protesters, mostly from farm groups, demonstrated peacefully in front of the US Embassy and were moving toward a downtown plaza.

The march was organized to protest government economic policies and US support for President Ferdinand E. Marcos.

Mr. Marcos ordered an immediate investigation of the violence, a palace news release said. The National Assembly will also investigating.

16 foes of apartheid plead not guilty in treason case

Sixteen leading opponents of South Africa's apartheid race laws pleaded not guilty yesterday to charges of high treason, which can carry the death penalty. The accused, including senior leaders of the main internal anti-apartheid group, the United Democratic Front, also pleaded not guilty to alternative charges of furthering the aims of unlawful organizations, and terrorism.

Much of the evidence against them is based on speeches they made and songs they asked crowds to sing at meetings.

The trial formally opened in May, but defense lawyers have been battling for months to get more details from the government on how the accused were alleged to have acted treasonably.

Nicaraguan chief accuses US of `state terrorism'

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega accused the United States yesterday of ``state terrorism'' and said the state of emergency in his country will be suspended when the US stops its ``policy of aggression.'' Nicaragua last week imposed new restrictions on freedom of speech, travel, and assembly, the right to strike, and protection of privacy in the home and the mails.

Supreme Court to adjudge airline policy on handicapped

The Supreme Court set the stage yesterday for an important ruling on rights of handicapped people. The justices said they will review a ruling, challenged by the Reagan administration, that the government must guarantee the rights of handicapped air travelers. A decision is expected by July.

In other cases, the court:

Set the stage for a potentially sweeping ruling over whether property owners are entitled to be compensated when local governments prevent land development.

Agreed to decide what evidence is needed to support search warrants authorizing seizure of allegedly obscene movies.

Agreed to resolve a dispute the government says could force it to guarantee billions of additional dollars in bank-provided credit.

US withholding nuclear data about China, Cranston claims

Sen. Alan Cranston (D) of California, objecting to President Reagan's proposed nuclear cooperation agreement with China, charged yesterday that the administration has ``withheld, suppressed, and covered up information'' about Peking's role in spreading nuclear material. In a Senate floor speech, Senator Cranston said China has had either negotiations or nuclear trade with five ``nuclear outlaw'' nations that are developing atomic weapons programs.

Major tax hike needed to cut federal deficit, Stockman says

A major tax increase is necessary to reduce the federal deficit, preferably a value-added tax, former Budget Director David Stockman said Monday. In the five years of the Reagan presidency, great strides have been made in reducing the growth of federal spending, but the deficit remains a major threat to the nation, Mr. Stockman told the annual convention of the Food Marketing Institute.

US and USSR break off talks on resuming direct air links

The United States and the Soviet Union have broken off negotiations to resume direct air travel between the two countries in a dispute over giving Pan Am, the American carrier, a ``fair share'' of the market, State Department officials said yesterday. No date was set for a resumption, making it virtually impossible that an agreement could be reached in time for President Reagan and Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev to sign at their summit meeting in November.

Sanctions on South Africa satisfy Commonwealth chiefs

Commonwealth leaders who wanted Britain and its former colonies to impose strong sanctions against South Africa said Monday they were satisfied by agreement over a less-stringent compromise package. The 49-nation group, whose meeting ends today, emerged late Sunday from five days of closed-door negotiating with a package of limited economic sanctions.

The accord provides for a nine-point package of immediate sanctions. Most of the measures, such as bans on arms and oil sales, nuclear cooperation, and discouraging cultural and scientific contact, have been enforced by many nations for years.

String of fires quenched in southern California

A week after brush fires cut a swath across more than 100,000 acres of southern California canyons under the lash of Santa Ana winds, the last of more than 20 blazes has been controlled. One man was killed, 21 homes burned, and at least six firefighters injured in the fires that began last Monday, many of them believed ignited by arsonists.

A photograph that appeared on Page 7 of the Monitor's Oct. 9 issue was incorrectly identified as one of Panamanian General Noriega. The original UPI photo was miscaptioned, and the man pictured is Gen. Rub'en Dario Par'edes.

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          France launches two new high-speed rail lines   

France launches two new high-speed rail linesFrance inaugurated two new high-speed rail lines on Saturday linking the capital to the western cities of Bordeaux and Rennes in what is likely to be the last launches of their kind for years as public cash becomes increasingly scarce. The state-owned SNCF railway operator expects 35,000 passengers to use the new route to Bordeaux daily and 30,000 to use the line to Rennes. Nearly eight billion euros (7.02 billion pounds) were invested in the stretch to Bordeaux while 3.4 billion euros went into the Rennes line, both under public-private partnerships, SNCF said.



          The Taiwanese Cable, IP & OTT STB Industry, 2Q 2017 Market Report; Launched via MarketResearchReports.com   

Market Research Reports, Inc. has announced the addition of “The Taiwanese Cable, IP & OTT STB Industry, 2Q 2017” research report to their website www.MarketResearchReports.com

Lewes, DE -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/30/2017 -- Shipment volume of cable, IP (Internet Protocol), OTT (Over-The-Top) STB (Set Top Box) in Taiwan reached nearly 20 million units while shipment value stood at US 2.5 billion in 2017. Of three kinds of STBs, OTT STB shipments outperformed or others with 18.4% year-on-year growth in the first quarter, bolstered by the increase in shipments of mid-range and high-end models for brands like Amazon, Roku, and Google, and the increasing demand in the Chinese OTT market. MIC predicts shipment volume of cable, IP, and OTT STB industry in Taiwan will grow over 8% year-on-year in the first half of 2017.

List of Topics

This research report presents Taiwanese cable, IP and OTT STB industry shipment volume and value forecast and recent quarter review of shipment volume, value and ASP, and manufacturer volume ranking. The report also examines price trends, production locations, shipment destinations, business types, and customer portfolios. The content of this report is based on primary data obtained through interviews with cable, IP and OTT STB makers.

Table of Contents
- Taiwanese Cable/IP/OTT STB Shipment Volume, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2018
- Taiwanese Cable/IP/OTT STB Shipment Value and ASP, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2018
- Taiwanese Cable STB Manufacturer Volume Ranking, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Manufacturer Volume Ranking, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Manufacturer Volume Ranking, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Volume by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Share by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Volume by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Share by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Volume by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Share by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB ASP by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB ASP by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB ASP by Function, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Volume by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Share by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Volume by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Share by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Volume by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Share by Production Location, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Volume by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Share by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Volume by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Share by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Volume by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Share by Shipment Destination, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Volume by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Share by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Volume by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Share by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Volume by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Share by Business Type, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Volume by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese Cable STB Shipment Share by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Volume by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese IP STB Shipment Share by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Volume by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Taiwanese OTT STB Shipment Share by Customer Portfolio, 1Q 2015 - 1Q 2017
- Research Scope & Definitions

Please visit this link for more details: http://www.marketresearchreports.com/market-intelligence-consulting-institute/taiwanese-cable-ip-ott-stb-industry-2q-2017

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Related Report;

The Taiwanese Wrist Wearable Industry, 2Q 2017; visit - http://www.marketresearchreports.com/market-intelligence-consulting-institute/taiwanese-wrist-wearable-industry-2q-2017

About Market Research Reports, Inc.
Market Research Reports® Inc. is world's largest store offering quality market research, SWOT analysis, competitive intelligence and industry reports. We help Fortune 500 to Start-Ups with the latest market research reports on global & regional markets which comprise key industries, leading market players, new products and latest industry analysis & trends.

Contact us for your market research requirements: http://www.marketresearchreports.com/contact

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          Global Soap and Cleaning Compounds Market Report 2017; New Report Launched   

Market Research Reports, Inc. has announced the addition of “Soap And Cleaning Compounds Market Global Report 2017” research report to their website www.MarketResearchReports.com

Lewes, DE -- (SBWIRE) -- 06/29/2017 -- The global soap and cleaning compounds market is expected to reach over $350 billion in 2020. New technologies are expected to drive the soap and cleaning compounds market growth. The introduction of new products varying in terms of fragrance, shape and cost will drive growth. Many companies will increase their R&D spend to capitalize on these new opportunities.

Soap And Cleaning Compounds Market Global Report 2017 from The Business Research Company provides the strategists, marketers and senior management with the critical information they need to assess the global soap and cleaning compounds market.

Reasons to Purchase
- Outperform competitors using accurate up to date demand-side dynamics information.
- Identify growth segments for investment.
- Facilitate decision making on the basis of historic and forecast data and the drivers and restraints on the market.
- Create regional and country strategies on the basis of local data and analysis.
- Stay abreast of the latest customer and market research findings
- Benchmark performance against key competitors.
- Develop strategies based on likely future developments.
- Utilize the relationships between key data sets for superior strategizing.
- Suitable for supporting your internal and external presentations with reliable high quality data and analysis
- Gain a global perspective on the development of the market.
- Report will be updated with the latest data and delivered to you within 3-5 working days of order.

Description
Where is the largest and fastest growing market for soap and cleaning compounds? How does the market relate to the overall economy, demography and other similar markets? What forces will shape the market going forward? The soap and cleaning compounds global market report from the Business Research Company answers all these questions and many more.

The report covers market characteristics, size and growth, segmentation, regional and country breakdowns, competitive landscape, market shares, trends and strategies for this market. It traces the market's historic and forecast market growth by geography. It places the market within the context of the wider chemicals market, and compares it with other markets.
- The market characteristics section of the report defines and explains the market.
- The market size section gives the market size ($b) covering both the historic growth of the market and forecasting the future. Drivers and restraints looks at the external factors supporting and controlling the growth of the market.
- Market segmentations break down market into sub markets.
- The regional and country breakdowns section gives an analysis of the market in each geography and the size of the market by geography and compares their historic and forecast growth. It covers all the regions, key developed countries and major emerging markets. It draws comparisons with country populations and economies to understand the importance of the market by country and how this is changing.
- Competitive landscape gives a description of the competitive nature of the market, market shares, and a description of the leading companies. Key financial deals which have shaped the market in recent years are identified.
- The trends and strategies section highlights the likely future developments in the market and suggests approaches companies can take to exploit this.
- The soap and cleaning compounds market section of the report gives context. It compares the soap and cleaning compounds market with other segments of the chemicals market by size and growth, historic and forecast. It analyses Expenditure Per Capita, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Indicators Comparison, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Enterprise And Employee Comparison, Energy Consumption In The Soap And Cleaning Compounds Industry, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Industry International Trade And Production.

Scope
Markets covered: Soap and other detergent manufacturing, polish and other sanitation goods manufacturing, and surface active agent manufacturing
Companies mentioned: Procter & Gamble Co., Unilever, Colgate-Palmolive Co., Ecolab Inc., and S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.
Countries: China, India, Japan, UK, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, Russia, USA, Brazil
Regions: Asia, Western Europe, Eastern Europe, North America, South America, Middle East, Africa, Oceania.
Time series: Five years historic and forecast.
Data: Ratios of market size and growth to related markets, population, GDP, Expenditure Per Capita, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Indicators Comparison, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Enterprise And Employee Comparison, Energy Consumption In The Soap And Cleaning Compounds Industry, Soap And Cleaning Compounds Industry International Trade And Production.
Data segmentations: country and regional historic and forecast data, market share of competitors, market segments.

Spanning over 250 pages "Soap And Cleaning Compounds Market Global Report 2017" report covers Soap And Clean Compounds Market Characteristics, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Size and Growth, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Trends And Strategies, PESTLE Analysis, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Customer Information, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Segmentation, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Regional And Country Analysis, Global Soap And Clean Compounds Market Comparison with Macro Economic Factors, Asia Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Asia Soap And Clean Compounds Market: Country Analysis, Western Europe Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Eastern Europe Soap And Clean Compounds Market, North America Soap And Clean Compounds Market, South America Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Middle East Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Africa Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Oceania Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Soap And Clean Compounds Market Competitive Landscape, Key Mergers And Acquisitions In The Soap And Clean Compounds Market, Market Background: Global Chemicals Market, Appendix. This report Covered Companies - Procter & Gamble Co., Unilever, Colgate-Palmolive Co., Ecolab Inc., and S. C. Johnson & Son, Inc.

Please visit this link for more details: http://www.marketresearchreports.com/tbrc/soap-and-cleaning-compounds-market-global-report-2017

For related reports please visit: Soap And Cleaning Compound Market Research Reports

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About Market Research Reports, Inc.
Market Research Reports® Inc. is world's largest store offering quality market research, SWOT analysis, competitive intelligence and industry reports. We help Fortune 500 to Start-Ups with the latest market research reports on global & regional markets which comprise key industries, leading market players, new products and latest industry analysis & trends.

Contact us for your market research requirements: http://www.marketresearchreports.com/contact

For more information on this press release visit: http://www.sbwire.com/press-releases/global-soap-and-cleaning-compounds-market-report-2017-new-report-launched-826665.htm

Media Relations Contact

Sudeep Chakravarty
Director - Operations
Market Research Reports, Inc.
Telephone: 1-302-703-9904
Email: Click to Email Sudeep Chakravarty
Web: http://www.marketresearchreports.com/tbrc/soap-and-cleaning-compounds-market-global-report-2017


          Drake Surprised Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez Moving On From Him With New Boyfriends   

drake jennifer lopez rihanna split boyfriends romance

Drake can’t seem to get over the fact that Rihanna and Jennifer Lopez have both moved on from him, making it evidently clear that there’s no chance he’ll be reconciling with either of them anytime soon.

Jennifer, who has openly gushed to being happier than ever before, is said to be in a committed relationship with Alex Rodriguez, whom sources say is the man Lopez can definitely see herself marrying if the romance continues to go as well as it has in recent months.

Meanwhile, recent photos of Rihanna making out with her billionaire boyfriend, Hassan Jameel, was enough to let Drake know that he’s a thing of the past.

Rihanna had waited long enough for Drake to make things right, especially in October when the singer reportedly called it quits after the rapper made it known he wasn’t ready to settle down just yet.

Click here to continue and read more...


          Here’s Why Barrister Ogungbeje Will Be Defending Evans The Kidnapper In Court   

Lagos lawyer, Olukoya Ogungbeje, has justified his decision to defend suspected billionaire kidnapper, Chukwudumeme Onwuamadike, a.k.a. Evans, in court. Ogungbeje has come under public criticisms for accepting the brief to seek freedom for Evans or have him charged to court, weeks after his arrest. But, speaking with Saturday Sun yesterday, Ogungbeje, accused a section of [&hellip

The post Here’s Why Barrister Ogungbeje Will Be Defending Evans The Kidnapper In Court appeared first on NixusBlog.com.


          DUP will use £1bn to cut suicide 'epidemic' in Northern Ireland   


THE Tories’ £1 billion deal with the DUP will help end a suicide “epidemic” in Northern Ireland, deputy leader Nigel Dodds said.
          Opioids As The New Big Tobacco   
Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit STEVE INSKEEP, HOST: Some state attorneys general have been filing lawsuits against the biggest companies in the opioid market. They are suing drug companies over the hazards of their products the same way states once sued the tobacco industry. Ailsa Chang of NPR's Planet Money podcast asked what is similar about the two fights and what is not. AILSA CHANG, BYLINE: When lawyers look at tobacco and opioids, they see two powerful industries that raked in billions of dollars. Both pushed an addictive product that sent the country spiraling into a public health crisis. There was misleading marketing, downplayed health risks. And all this overlap may explain why there's a returning cast of characters. May I ask how much money you personally made in the tobacco cases? JOE RICE: You may ask. I'm not going to answer. CHANG: Joe Rice of Charleston, S.C., was the lead negotiator for plaintiffs in a $250 billion settlement with the tobacco industry in 1998.
          What Amazon wants from Whole Foods: Data on shopping habits   
NEW YORK (AP) -- Why is Amazon spending nearly $14 billion for Whole Foods ? One reason: People who buy yoga mats and fitness trackers on Amazon might also like grapes, nuts and other healthy items at the organic grocery chain....
          Apollo Jeans Shorts   
Images of Apollo Jeans Shorts

What’s Inside
Exhibit Hall in Apollo Rooms Friday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM Saturday 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM No T-shirts, jeans, shorts, sneakers or sandals! • Feel free to wear tuxedos, ball gowns, and other evening wear. ... Read Content

Basic Patch, Screen Print And Spray Paint Stencils - DIY Fashion
I've used a few of these in a yellow fabric to trail down the leg of a pair of jeans. Make Pants and Shorts; Make Skirts and Dresses; Create the Latest Fashion Trends ... Read Article

Apollo Jeans Shorts Pictures

© 2010 Maps.com OMBAY UMBAI
1 The Gateway of India is built on Apollo Bunder Pier to commemorate the arrival of King George V and Queen Jeans or something similar are acceptable almost anywhere. Shorts are not worn in city ... Get Content Here

Photos of Apollo Jeans Shorts

Boy Scout Resident Camp 2012 Camp Noyo Leader’s Guide
1000 Apollo Way, Suite 106, Santa Rosa, CA 95407 (707) 546-8137 www.redwoodbsa.org [ ] T-Shirts (3 minimum) [ ] Socks (6 pairs) [ ] Sturdy Pants (Jeans – 2 pairs) ... Document Viewer

Packing Light For Greece - About Greece Travel - Travel To ...
1 pair light-colored (but preferably not blue) cotton slacks, jeans, or other medium or heavyweight pants. 1 pair dark pants 1 pair shorts 1 windbreaker or other light jacket ... Read Article

Images of Apollo Jeans Shorts

Seph.macrophile.com
The bulge snaking down my left leg ached inside my jeans, straining the fabric past my knee. Well, the cathedral bells rang that day when a god in beige shorts descended the stairs and sat two and my tail wagged when a particularly good idea came to mind, “I think I'll call you Apollo.” ... View This Document

What An Incredible Day - YouTube
Alex Lamb and I shredding englewood: Alex is in the white shirt and shorts and I am in the brown shirt and jeans. 7:41 Watch Later Error NASA Apollo 11 moon mission original footage by tvinsider4 177,987 views ... View Video

Pictures of Apollo Jeans Shorts

Www.ocean.edu
United Nations Tour & International Buffet in the Delegates Dining Room: A dress code is strictly enforced – no jeans, shorts, or sneakers, and Apollo Theatre & Harlem Tour with Lunch at Sylvia’s: Backstage tour of The Apollo; see President Bill Clinton’s office, Schomburg Center ... Retrieve Doc

100% Stretch Nylon Low-Rise Boy Cut Brief Trunks - YouTube
3:48 Watch Later Error GOGO BOY APOLLO 2 by claudiosanjr 11,214 views 3:43 Watch Later Error Sexy Brazilian Style Moleton Jeans - Miami Fashion Show by 1:11 Watch Later Error Never Wear White Shorts by jameslos7 912,871 views ... View Video

Glove - Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia
Gloves and gauntlets are integral components of pressure suits and spacesuits such as the Apollo/Skylab A7L which went to the Dress pants; Jeans; Jodhpurs; Overall; Parachute pants; Phat pants; Shorts; Sweatpants ... Read Article

Apollo Jeans Shorts Images

GABRIELE HACKWORTHY GILLIAN WILKINS Brisbane To London ...
Lean Leg Cargo Shorts $49.95 Casper (right) is wearing: Block Stripe Tee $24.95 Lucy is wearing: Camo Print Tank $49.95, Skinny Stretch Jeans $99.00, Sydney to London, editor, Apollo magazine. “I miss not having to wear socks everyday…” ... Fetch This Document

Apollo Jeans Shorts

Everybody Can Change: Rocky IV
Choice is a pair of sagging blue jeans with a plain white t-shirt (also baggy). his heart-patterned boxer shorts. Zach observed that this particular cultural phenomenon (sagging Apollo is internally tortured, as Rocky points out when he says, “Hey, uh, Apollo, uh, you ever ... Fetch Here

Photos of Apollo Jeans Shorts


U.N. Tour & Buffet in Delegates Dining Room: Dress code strictly enforced (no jeans, shorts, sneakers - men must wear jackets. Apollo Theatre & Harlem Tour with Lunch at Sylvia’s: Apollo backstage tour, Bill Clinton’s office, Schomburg Center, Hamilton Heights, Sugar ...

NASA: Apollo 40th Anniversary Documentary "The Journeys of Apollo"










Return Document

Apollo Jeans Shorts


American Eagle Outfitters Toddler Girl Pants and Shorts http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10154.html Apollo Jeans Apollo Jeans Active Wear DIVA Girls' Hooded Jackets with Drawstrings ... Return Doc

Images of Apollo Jeans Shorts

JIPA SEMINAR
jeans, pants, jackets and T-shirts” Decision → Refusal Affirmed (11) In re Apollo Colors, Inc. “intimate apparel, namely, nightshirts, pajamas, underwear, socks, robes, slippers, boxer shorts, nightcaps ... View Full Source

Apollo Jeans Shorts Photos

Se­Jong Camp 2012
206 Falcon Lane, Apollo, PA 15613 Home Phone: 724‐727‐1309 Mr. V. Cell Phone: 412‐215‐9968 3 pair shorts Swim trunks/bathing suit 1 towel 5 t‐shirts 1 pair of jeans ... Doc Viewer

Apollo Jeans Shorts Images

Red Wheelbarrow - Welcome To De Anza College
Before Apollo | Liza Porter 150 Old Photo | Shirley Powers 161 motion, he lifts her, strips off her jeans, and backs her up onto the table, are just boys, teenagers wearing baggy shorts and no shirts, sporting ... Read Content

YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.
Spotlight Neil Armstrong, First Man on the Moon, Passes Away. Neil Armstrong, astronaut on the famed 1969 Apollo 11 mission and the first man to walk on the moon, died Saturday at the age of 82. ... View Video

Apollo Jeans Shorts Pictures

Download.microsoft.com
PC-based POS systems that have more processing power than the Apollo spacecrafts are the norm now, and one study from 2001 stated that 92.1% of American Eagle Outfitters is a $1.5 billion mall-based retailer sells casual apparel and accessories (shirts, jeans, shorts, sweaters, skirts, footwear ... View Doc

Apollo Jeans Shorts

Standard School Attire
General Guidelines Jeans of any style or color are not allowed. Pants or shorts Apollo Orange, Green Bailey Red, Purple, Yellow, Green ... Read Here

Apollo Jeans Shorts Pictures

Golf 4A - 2008 Tournament Guide
Apollo Independence Prescott Sandra Day O’Connor Sunnyslope Thunderbird Jeans, bathing suits, tank tops, tee shirts, halter tops, cutoffs, short shorts, tennis shorts, sweats, ... Get Doc

Pictures of Apollo Jeans Shorts

AIR PACIFIC LTD
Apollo: L{FJ/A (enter) LOFJ/A/Q/25DECLAXNAN10P. Worldspan: G/AIR/FJ (enter) @FJA25DECLAXNAN10P*! Women: Dresses of medium or long length; Long tailored slacks/pants or skirt with coordinating blouse, shirt or sweater - No shorts or jeans ... Retrieve Here

Apollo Jeans Shorts Pictures

By Direction Of The Official Receiver
50 2 pairs of ladies jeans. 51 - 52 are 2 similar lots 270 1 X Silver/Blue Apollo Mountain Bike. 271 7 X Radio Facias, 1 X Bluetooth Device 433 2 X Pairs Of Shorts, 1 X T-Shirt, 10 X Pairs Of Socks, 1 X Red/White Check Shirt, 2 X Pairs Of ... Retrieve Here

Photos of Apollo Jeans Shorts

East Bay High School
All shirts and blouses must extend beyond the waistband of the jeans, pants, or skirt and be long ALL PANTS AND SHORTS SHALL BE SECURED AT THE WAIST. Apollo Beach-Home Tues 8/28 Lennard Apollo Beach-3pm ... Doc Viewer


          DoD FY 2018 Navy ship and submarine modernization & procurement funding   
WASHINGTON. Funding slated for major shipbuilding and maritime systems totals $30.4 billion under the Department of Defense (DoD) Fiscal Year (FY) 2017 acquisition funding request, an increase of $3.4 billion over the FY 2017 request.

          Ground system funding in FY 2018 DoD budget   
WASHINGTON. Funding slated for major ground systems totals $11.2 billion under the Department of Defense (DoD) Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 acquisition funding request, an increase of $1.4 billion over the FY 2017 request.

          Manned & unmanned aircraft procurement & modernization: FY 2018 DoD budget   
WASHINGTON. Funding slated for major aircraft and related systems totals $49.9 billion under the Department of Defense (DoD) Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 acquisition funding request an increase of $4.6 billion from the FY 2017 request.

          No MicroHoo? Hallelujah!   
When I saw the headline, I smiled: "Microsoft Abandons Yahoo Acquisition." Absent a surprise ending, the behemoth of Redmond's attempt to go head-to-head with Google in Web advertising by paying billions to snap up Yahoo has failed. And I'm relieved--if...

          Movie Review: Ferrell, Poehler crap out against “The House”   
This past week’s best misdirection play wasn’t a tweet from a doomed, bratty not-really-a-billionaire in the White House. It was from the cast and director of a comedy, dishing on how they’d cut Mariah Carey out of their movie for … Continue reading
          What Amazon wants from Whole Foods: Data on shopping habits   
NEW YORK (AP) -- Why is Amazon spending nearly $14 billion for Whole Foods ? One reason: People who buy yoga mats and fitness trackers on Amazon might also like grapes, nuts and other healthy items at the organic grocery chain....
          Comment on How Israeli/Saudi ‘Alliance’ Plays Trump by Westrn Insurgent   
Spot on observations Joe. The situation you describe in relation to Americas role in the Middle East (a growing disconnect between people who still think for themselves and the majority that passively consume whatever the MSM throws at them) is happening all over the Western world...from the US and Canada to the UK, France, Germany etc. It's not just about the US and the Middle East, it is about the future of western democracy and how the global order is organized. The stakes could not be higher. The MSM no longer reports "news" it feeds people a narrative that pushes continued globalization and the dissolution of the nation state, utopian multiculturalism and a world run for and by a handful of cosmopolitan "elites" who would be happy to see the rest of us turned into 21st century serfs. Russia, China, Syria, Iran etc. are "enemies" because they aren't prepared to give up their national sovereignty to a bunch of bankers, tech billionaires and other unhinged parasites who feel it is their divine right to rule the entire planet. The Middle Eastern fracas described by Crooke is part of this bigger trend. The hard-selling of identity politics, ostensibly about "respect" and "caring" about all people, is mainly about control. Using shame and guilt and anger over legitimate grievances to drive people apart and while we all fight among ourselves they consolidate their power and control over us. That is the plan anyway. I have a feeling it won't play out quite like the "elites" expect.
          31 MAYO 2017   



  • - IMPORTACION MARITIMA, PUERTO DEL CALLAO

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: BBC QUEBEC


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    SHANGHAI
    HYOSUNG CORPORATION................¦AUTOTRANSFORMADOR MONOFASICO HYOSUNG 10058125-01 AUTOTRANSFORMADOR AUT¦691510

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: BRIO FAITH


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    MANZANILLO
    DAIMLER VEHICULOS COMERCIALES MEXIC¦N3 FREIGHTLINER M2 112 VE:MEXICO A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCAD¦324960
    DAIMLER VEHICULOS COMERCIALES MEXIC¦CABINA SKELETON CL120 FREIGHTLINER SKELETON CAB CL 120 48 " MR PARTES.¦2000
    DAIMLER VEHICULOS COMERCIALES MEXIC¦N3 FREIGHTLINER CL 112 VE:MEXICO A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCAD¦241076
    KENWORTH MEXICANA SA DE CV.........¦N3 KENWORTH T880 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCADOR MC:KENWORTH P¦25460
    KENWORTH MEXICANA SA DE CV.........¦N3 KENWORTH T800 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCADOR MC:KENWORTH P¦38552
    KENWORTH MEXICANA SA DE CV.........¦N3 KENWORTH T800 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCADOR MC:KENWORTH P¦62729
    KENWORTH MEXICANA SA DE CV.........¦N3 KENWORTH T660 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 CA:REMOLCADOR MC:KENWORTH P¦31480
    NAVISTAR MEXICO SA DE CV...........¦N3 INTERNATIONAL PROSTAR+122 6X4 2017/2018 VERSION:REMOLCADOR -CA:REMO¦41140
    MAZATLAN
    DEACERO SAPI DE CV.................¦ALAMBRON DE ACERO MEDIDAS: 5.5MM 1008 SAE ALAMBRON BAJO CARBON........¦208691
    DEACERO SAPI DE CV.................¦BARRAS DEACERO DE ACERO MEDIDAS: 3/8 X 9.00M CORRUGADAS BARRA CORRUGAD¦5478811

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: EVER UNIFIC


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    ACAJUTLA
    CLEAN GENERATION SA DE CV..........¦BATERIAS USADAS.......................................................¦109004
    ALBERT VICTOR (BEHER
    ARIESCOPE EL MEJOR TRADING PTE LT..¦HILADO DE ALGODON NE 30/1-TIPO FIBRA: FIBRA CORTA O DISCONTINUA; TIPO.¦22654
    BUENAVENTURA
    AMTEX SA...........................¦CARBOXIMETILCELULOSA AMTEX BIG BAG X 1000KG 20 TM B.Q. 000829-17 INFOR¦21034
    CABLES DE ENERGIA Y DE TELECOMUNICA¦CABLES TELEFONICOS INTERIORES TENSION MENOR A 1 KV CONDUCTORES ELECTRI¦17907
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    CHONGQING
    CENTRAL-CHINA CO...................¦POLYVINYL ALCOHOL SUNDY -POLYVINYL ALCOHOL-EN KILOGRAMOS..............¦17170
    CHONGQING LIFAN INDUSTRY GROUP IMP.¦L3 LIFAN LF150GY-4 VE:LF A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2017 CA:MOTOCICLETA PM:9¦15120
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    CHONGQING LIFAN INDUSTRY GROUP IMP.¦MOTOR LIFAN 162FMJ A¥O: 2017-MOTOR NO.: 162FMJ H1235571-MOTOR CG150 A/¦36279
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    CHONGQING LIYANG JIAYU MOTORCYCLE C¦L5 ACTIVA AC300ZH-1 VE:S/VERSION 2017/2017 NC:1 CC:300 CH:LC4HDPXL3HF8¦62038
    CHONGQING POPULAR MOTOR MACHINERY E¦TRICICLO EN CKD Y REPUESTOS...........................................¦20287
    DALIAN
    GUANGZHOU FU DE LU TRADING CO LTD..¦CONGELADORES HATTKE D07W2B -1850*850*850MM-ISLAND FREEZER.............¦4796
    FOSHAN
    FOSHAN ANZHE MEDICAL INSTRUMENT CO.¦DENTAL UNIT ANZHE AZ-201 UNIDAD DENTAL CON ACCESORIOS DENTAL UNIT.....¦4535
    FOSHAN EVERBRIGHT IMPORT AND EXPORT¦VENTILADOR PRIMA LF-SF1892RCR-18PULG STAND FAN RED COLOR-18PULG COLOR.¦11050
    JIANLIAN HOMECARE PRODUCTS CO L....¦SILLA DE RUEDA JIANLIAN HOMECARE IAWCA05ALUMINIO ECONOMICO PARA MINUSV¦7101
    FUZHOU
    FUAN MOWEI ELECTRONIC TECHNOLOGY CO¦SILLONES MASAJEADORES VERSATO KSY-850 UNIDAD MASAJEAR DE MOVIMIENTO ME¦4100
    JIALING-HONDA MOTORS CO LTD........¦GENERADOR HONDA EP2500CX-TIPO: LDH; N° DE SERIE: EAHC-1398867; N° DE M¦9180
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    GUANGZHOU
    DONGUAN CITY ZOHAR YOME INDUSTRIAL.¦DETERGENTE EN POLVO PRESENTACION: SACOS DE 25KG USO:SKY BLUE SZ14 WASH¦24598
    HO CHI MINH CITY
    BEST LUCKY INTERNATIONAL...........¦BATERIA YACHT 12N9-3B-BATERIAS CON SOLUCION ELECTROLITICA-PARA EL TRAN¦11211
    HONG KONG
    AMPARTS LP.........................¦EJE 77.5 DE TRACK AMPRO LEVAS LARGAS CL604 (L598MM) DE 10 ESTRIAS SLAC¦21660
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    WOFOO INTERNATIONAL HONG KONG LIMIT¦ACEITE DE AJONJOLI SOFIT 657 CTNS INGREDIENTE DE COCINA ACEITE DE AJON¦18875
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    ZHUHAI KINDLY MEDICAL DEVICES CO...¦JERINGA DESCARTABLE SIGMA EMPAQUE INDIVIDUAL TIPO BLISTER CONTENIENDO.¦7610
    HUANGPU
    ALYRUK INTERNATIONAL CORPORATION...¦SULFATO DE ZINC LOTE: 20170310 ZINC SULPHATE HEPTAHYDRATE (ZN21%).....¦75180
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    JAKARTA, JAVA
    PT BANDO INDONESIA.................¦FAJAS PARA AUTOMOVILES BANDO DIV. CODIGOS REPUESTOS PARA VEHICULOS AUT¦6042
    PTBANDO INDONESIA..................¦FAJAS DE VENTILADOR BANDO A100 -PARA USOAUTOMOTRIZ-...................¦6189
    VINCENT SHEPPARD INDONESIA.........¦SILLA VINCENT SHEPPARD CH E72-PA 90 SILLAS LILY OAK PARA USO EN HOTEL.¦721
    JIANGMEN
    IMS INTERNATIONAL LTD..............¦EQUIPO DE VENTILACION PARA VENTILAR AMBIENTES CFP-120 TUB815C8........¦3130
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    KAOHSIUNG
    ERUI INTERNATIONAL ELECTRONIC......¦POLIPROPILENO HOMOPOLIMERO 1250D-1250D-POLYPROPYLENE ALTO FLUJO.......¦112822
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    LAEM CHABANG
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    LIANYUNGANG
    SUQIAN EASY DECORATE CARPET CO.....¦GRAS ARTIFICIAL DECORATIVO X MT LINEAL DIMENSIONES: 2 X 0.47..........¦62750
    MANZANILLO
    ACCIMIN SA DE CV...................¦DICAMEX 437 DE 20 KG. C/U EN 6 X 40` H.C. BULTOS SUELTOS DE PAPEL MULT¦109180
    AMC WORLD WIDE SA DE CV............¦CONTENEDOR VACIO 20 ; ; -.............................................¦2250
    CONDUCTORES MEXICANOS ELECTRICOS Y.¦CABLE COAXIAL CONDUMEX 801355AM 801355AMCABLE COAXIAL.................¦72960
    CUPROSA SA DE CV...................¦SULFATO DE ZINC LOTE: DC-295 DC-296 DC-297 DC-298 PARA USO INDUSTRIAL.¦41000
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    DAEWOO ELECTRONICS HOME APPLIANCES.¦REFRIGERADORA DAEWOO RGP-460DPH-CAPACIDAD DE 460 LITROS ACABADOS EN CO¦9352
    DAL-TILE MEXICO COMERCIAL S DE RL..¦CERAMICO ESMALTADO DALTILE GRADO DE DIMENSIONES Y ESPESOR: 045.00CMX09¦24762
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    NAGOYA, AICHI
    KASHMIR CO LTD.....................¦26 VEHICULOS..........................................................¦29510
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    NANSHA
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    NINGBO
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    FST INTERNATIONAL ENTERPRISE.......¦ALICATE UNIVERSAL PULIDO 8 DKTOOL SD-28 3 SD-283 ARTICULOS PARA LA FER¦14605
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    OSAKA, OSAKA
    TGL JAPAN CO LTD...................¦VEHICULOS USADOS TOYOTA: SEGU4164465 TOYOTA NOAH SR40-0230041 TOYOTA..¦10690
    PENANG (GEORGETOWN)
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    PUSAN
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    YOKOHAMA, KANAGAWA
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    ZAPU
    BON VOYAGE LOGISTICS INC...........¦TORNILLOS DE DIFERENTES CARACTERISTICAS SEGUN FACTURA COMERCIAL.......¦24727

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: FREEDOM


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    AGUAS INTERNACIONALE
    FETICHE LLC........................¦VELERO MORGAN CLASSIC 41 A¥O: 1986EMBARCACION DE RECREO VELERO NOMBRE:¦17000

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: GWEN


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    HOUSTON
    PHILLIPS 66 CO.....................¦GASOLINA DE AVIACION 100LL LIQUIDO A GRANEL USO:DERIVADO DEL PETROLEO.¦866525

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: HOEGH ANTWERP


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    BREMERHAVEN
    AUDI AG............................¦M1 AUDI Q7 VE:3.0 TFSI QUATTRO TIPTRONIC- AMBITION A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MO¦114432
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    VOLKSWAGEN AG......................¦M3C3 VOLKSWAGEN CRAFTER VE:PASAJEROS 20+1 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2017 CA¦90146
    RIO DE JANEIRO
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    VIGO
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    IVECO SPA..........................¦N3 IVECO 380T42H VE:S/V A¥O FAB:2017 A¥OMOD:2017 CA:CHASIS CABINADO MC¦183406
    PROFECON-FDEZ Y MONTOTO SL.........¦PALA MIXTA CATERPILLAR 428 PALAS MIXTAS O RETROEXCAVADORAS TIENEN LA F¦14286
    SEAT SA............................¦M1 AUDI Q3 VE:PI 1.4 TFSI STRONIC A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2017-CH:WAUZZZ8¦17542
    ZEEBRUGGE
    A HARTRODT DEUTSCHLAND GMBH AND C..¦N3 MERCEDES BENZ ACTROS 3344 K VE:ALEMANIA A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2018 N¦66608
    ATLAS COPCO ROCK DRILLS AB.........¦CAMION MINERO ATLAS COPCO MT2010 VE:20172017/2017 NC:6 CC:8900 CH/VIN:¦24400
    AUDI AG............................¦M1 AUDI Q7 VE:3.0 TFSI QUATTRO TIPTRONIC- AMBITION A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MO¦5191
    AUTOMOBILES CITROEN................¦M1 CITROEN NEW C3 2017/2018 VERSION:NEW C3 1.6 HDI 90 BVM5 FEEL NC:4 C¦29150
    AUTOMOBILES PEUGEOT................¦M1 PEUGEOT 208 2017/2018 VERSION:ACTIVE 1.6 TIP 1PIAA5LCALG0A0G0 NC:4.¦97435
    DAIMLER AG.........................¦M1 MERCEDES BENZ AMG C 43 4MATIC VE:AMGC43 4MAT A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2¦30920
    DAIMLER AG.........................¦M1 MERCEDES BENZ GLC 250 4MATIC VE:GLC250 4MATI A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2¦9150
    JAGUAR LAND ROVER LTD..............¦M1 LAND ROVER DISCOVERY VE:V6 A¥O FAB:2017 A¥O MOD:2017-CH:SALRA2BV7HA¦26930
    MAGYAR SUZUKI CORPORATION..........¦M1 SUZUKI VITARA 2017/2018 VERSION:NEW VITARA GLX MT 4WD VVT NC:4 CC:1¦85096
    ORIENT.............................¦EXCAVADORA VOLVO EC290BLC 2006 SERIE: EC290V80165 USO:A¥O: 2006 USADA.¦30200
    ORIENT.............................¦EXCAVADORA HIDRAULICA CATERPILLAR CAT 325BLN A¥O: 1999 COLOR: AMARILLO¦28000
    VOLVO TRUCK CORPORATION............¦N3 VOLVO FH 6X4R VE:FH 64R A¥O FABR.:2017 A¥O MOD.:2017 NC:6 CC:12800.¦36654
    VOLVO TRUCK CORPORATION............¦N3 VOLVO FE 6X4 R VE:FE A¥O FABR.:2017 A¥O MOD.:2017 NC:6 CC:7200 CH:Y¦7501

    IMPORTACIONES CALLAO: EXPORTADORES
    FECHA: 31 MAYO 2017(CALLAO)
    BUQUE: MOL PARADISE


    ORIGEN..¦EXPORTADOR..........¦PRODUCTO..............................................................¦KILOS
    IQUIQUE
    IMPORTADORA Y EXPORTADORA JOTARA LT¦UTENCILIOS DE COCINA ROMANIA 401-5-A CODIGO: 5CU-401-5-A PARA USO DOME¦12868
    IMPORTADORA Y EXPORTADORA JOTARA LT¦TETERA ROMANIA S666 CODIGO: TK-S666 DE USO DOMESTICO INCLUYE TAZA Y CU¦11406
    K S CHILE SA.......................¦SAL DE MESA LOBOS CODIGO: P3000478 USO DOMESTICO 7200 CAJAS CON BOLSA.¦73800
    K+S CHILE SA.......................¦SAL DE MESA LOBOS CODIGO: P3000478 USO DOMESTICO 11760 CAJAS CON BOLSA¦121722
    K+S CHILE SA.......................¦SAL DE COCINA BELL`S CODIGO: P3000507 USO DOMESTICO 2 400 CAJAS CON BO¦24600
    NIPPON YUSEN KAISHA................¦CONTENEDORES VACIOS...................................................¦0
    PATAGON LOGISTICS SPA..............¦DISCO OPTICO MASTER-G 50DMR47MGBK4 EMPAQUE:CILINDRO; DISCOS X EMPAQUE:¦25568
    PATAGON LOGISTICS SPA..............¦CAJAS DE CARTON, TIPO DISCOS COMPACTOS DVD. CARDBOARD BOXES, TYPE COMP¦25480
    SQM INDUSTRIAL SA..................¦NITRATO DE SODIO SQM 19200 SACOS DE 25 KG C/U. USO INDUSTRIAL NITRATO.¦492144
    SQM INDUSTRIAL SA..................¦QUIMICOS..............................................................¦49253
    ULTRAMAR AGENCIA MARITIMA LTDA.....¦CONTENEDORES VACIOS...................................................¦197500
    LIRQUEN
    AGROINDUSTRIAL PEDREGAL SA.........¦AVENA PELADA AGROPEL AVENA PELADA ESTABILIZADA COMERCIALIZACION - LOS.¦24048
    AGROINDUSTRIAL PEDREGAL SA.........¦A