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Assembly bypolls across six States mostly peaceful

first_imgBy elections were held in nine Assembly constituencies in six States on Sunday. Barring Ater in Madhya Pradesh, where incidents of firing were reported from two places, polling was by and large peaceful.Polling took place in two Assembly constituencies each in Karnataka and Madhya Pradesh and one each in West Bengal, Assam, Rajasthan, Himachal Pradesh and Delhi.Eighty-two per cent votes were polled in the Kanthi Dakshin Assembly by-election in Purba Medinipur district of West Bengal. “The number is likely increase once the final figure arrives tomorrow (Monday),” a senior Election Commission official told The Hindu.Lower turnoutA moderate polling of around 63% was reported from the Bhoranj assembly segment of Hamirpur district in Himachal Pradesh. Faulty EVMs caused some delay in a few booths in the morning. But the machines were quickly replaced. Polling was around 4% less than what was seen in the 2012 polls.Former Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal claimed that his party would win the seat with a record margin. Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh, who was in Nahan, said the people would vote for his good work and his party’s fine performance in the past four years. 46.23% in RajouriThe by-poll in west Delhi’s Rajouri Garden constituency witnessed a low voter turnout. The State Election Commission recorded 46.23 per cent when the voting closed at 6 pm. Last time, the turnout was 72%Polling was slow in stations across the 166 polling booths in the constituency. It, however, picked up from 21.73% at 1 pm to touch 42.89% by 5 pm.Delhi Congress leader Ajay Maken, who is a resident of the area, cast his vote early in the day. “This by-election will be a referendum on [Chief Minister Arvind] Kejriwal’s two years’ work,” he told the media.74% in DholpurIn Dholpur Assembly constituency in Rajasthan, where the BJP is in power, 74 per cent polling was recorded till 5 pm.Dhemaji seat in Assam had a turnout of 66.97 per cent, while it was 65 per cent in Bandhavgarh and 60 per cent in Ater in MP. Polling percentages in Gundlupet and Nanajanagud Assembly seats in Karnataka, where Congress is in power, was 78 per cent and 76 per cent respectively till 5 pm.last_img read more

Goa approves 14 new projects worth Rs 717 cr

first_imgPanaji, Jun 20 (PTI) Goa government today cleared 14 new projects worth Rs 717 crore, which will help generate employment to 2,600 persons.The Goa Investment Promotion Board (GIPB) meeting chaired by Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar approved the project proposals.”Total proposals worth Rs 717 crore were cleared by the Board. In all, 14 projects were cleared and some were deferred. Once these projects attain completion, it will provide employment to 2,600 people,” Parsekar told reporters.A senior GIPB member said that the board deferred the decision on proposal of Hindustan Coca Cola Beverages Private Limited to expand its existing plant at Verna.The proposal ofSpark Healthline Private Limited for grant of in-principle approval for construction of floating jetty for water sports activity and boat cruise in the Mandovi bay area at Reis Magos near here was also deferred, he said.Sources said GIPB approved proposal of Alkesh Mangesh Dessai for grant of in-principle approval for setting up of agro-eco-tourism project on 1,360 square meters land at Shristhal in south Goa.Other proposals which were cleared include the project for capacity expansion in existing facility of Andrew Telecommunication India Private Limitedin Verna Industrial Estate.It also gave a go-ahead for expansion in the manufacturing capacity of tablets and capsules from the existing capacity of 6,000 million numbers per annum to 8,000 millions numbers per annum at Watson Pharma Private Limited situated at the Verna Industrial Estate.Alcon Cement Company Private Limited has been allowed to expand its manufacturing facility by setting up a new cement plant costing Rs 53 crore on an area of 2,300 sq. mtrs within the existing premises at Surla.advertisementWith regard to the hospitality sector, the Board approved the proposal by Alagoa Resort for grant of in-principle approval for expansion of existing Amigueiro Eco Boutique Resort at Betalbhatim in South Goa with an investment of Rs 9.86 crore. PTI RPS NRB MRlast_img read more

Aamir used steroids to get Dangal body? Coach Rahul Bhatt won’t say yes or no

first_imgOn Nov 28, the makers of Aamir Khan’s upcoming film Dangal released a video which showed how Aamir Khan gained weight up to 97 kg to portray the older Mahavir Singh Phogat on screen and then lost a drastic amount of weight within five months to sport no less than six packs.While releasing the video, Aamir had said, “I would like to mention that putting on weight and losing it so fast is very unhealthy. I did it for my film under the supervision of experts, but it is very unhealthy for any regular person.”On December 2, a week ago, fitness expert Ranveer Allahbadia released a video on YouTube where he suggested that Aamir might have had used steroids to get his physique right for Dangal.ALSO READ: This statue of Jesus Christ can give Dangal’s Aamir a run for his moneyALSO READ: Aamir’s physical transformation for Dangal is impressive but unhealthy ALSO READ: While SRK-Salman get close, it’s Aamir who’s left out Now Aamir’s fitness coach Rahul Bhatt, who trained the actor to achieve the weight loss in six months, is neither denying nor confirming the charges.Speaking to DNA about Allahbadia’s insinuations, Bhatt said, “It would amount to breach of confidentiality for me to talk about this. All I can say is, steroids are an occupational hazard in the entertainment industry. It would be nave to believe that its consumption is nil, and to deny its existence.”When Rahul was asked if his non-committal reply meant that he is admitting to Aamir’s use of steroids, he clarified that he is simply not at liberty to talk about his methods.advertisement”I am not admitting to anything. Just how my client got that physique, or how any entertainer gets into shape is a matter between the client and the coach. I am not at liberty to talk about this,” Rahul said.On a final, more personal note, Rahul added, “Let’s put it this way. If I had a son and he wanted to be an actor I’d never let him mess around with steroids. And only a qualified fitness coach can guide you through a proper regime where you don’t mess up your metabolism with mindless abuse.”Directed by Nitesh Tiwari, Dangal is the story of real life Haryanvi wrestler Mahavir Singh Phogat who trained his daughters Babita Kumari and Geeta Phogat to become world-class wrestlers. While Aamir plays Mahavir Singh Phogat, his daughters Babita and Geeta are played by Sanya Malhotra and Fatima Sana Shaikh respectively. The film is releasing in theatres on December 23 this year.WATCH: Aamir’s fat to fit journey for Dangallast_img read more

Here’s Video Of Jim Harbaugh Wearing Michigan State Gear In 1999

first_imgHead coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines (L) jogs off the fiedl with his brother Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh (R) following halftime of the Michigan and Maryland Terrapins.COLLEGE PARK, MD – OCTOBER 03: Head coach Jim Harbaugh of the Michigan Wolverines (L) jogs off the fiedl with his brother Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh (R) following halftime of the Michigan and Maryland Terrapins game at Byrd Stadium on October 3, 2015 in College Park, Maryland. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)It’s a safe bet that Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh, who also played for the Wolverines, isn’t a fan of Michigan State. But for at least one day in 1999, he intentionally wore Spartan green. This week, WXTZ-TV in Detroit unearthed footage of Harbaugh celebrating with the 1999 Michigan State basketball team during their national title run.Why does this exist? Harbaugh’s sister, Joani, is married to Tom Crean, who was then MSU’s assistant coach. Crean is now the head coach at Indiana.Harbaugh probably isn’t thrilled that this footage exists. But if his team beats MSU tomorrow, he probably won’t care.last_img read more

Lewis Hamilton starts 2019 F1 season with record 6th successive pole at Australian GP

first_img Next Associated Press MelbourneMarch 16, 2019UPDATED: March 16, 2019 13:36 IST Mercedes locked the front grid in Australian Grand Prix qualifying (Reuters Photo)HIGHLIGHTSHamilton collected the 84th pole position of his career and his 8th in AustraliaBottas was second and will start alongside his Mercedes teammate on the front of the gridSebastian Vettel was third and Red Bull’s Max Versteppen split the Ferraris by finishing fourthLewis Hamilton produced the fastest lap ever at the Australian Grand Prix to take pole position at the Formula One season opener for the sixth consecutive year.The five-time world champion overhauled teammate Valtteri Bottas’ leading time with seconds remaining to top qualifying Saturday in 1 minute, 20.486 seconds.”Oh man. I’m shaking it was so close out there,” Hamilton said in a post-session TV interview. “I’m so proud. Valtteri did an exceptional job out there, so close.”Bottas was second in 1:20.598 and will start alongside his Hamilton on the front of the grid in Sunday’s Grand Prix. Two-time defending champion Sebastian Vettel was third and Red Bull’s Max Versteppen split the Ferraris by finishing fourth in front of Charles Leclerc.Hamilton collected the 84th pole position of his career and his eighth in Australia.Asked about matching Michael Schumacher and Ayrton Senna’s record for most pole positions at an F1 circuit, the British driver was slightly taken aback.”I didn’t even know about that,” Hamilton said. “That’s news to me.”He’ll be focused more on the race, having only been able to convert one of his five most recent pole starts here into a victory in 2015.The Ferraris appeared to be the fastest cars in winter testing, but so far haven’t been able to top the Mercedes in any of the three practice sessions or qualifying in Melbourne.That doesn’t bother Vettel, who has won here the last two years despite finishing behind Hamilton in qualifying.Asked if Ferrari can make it three in a row in Australia, Vettel said: “Of course, I think we can. We have a good race car. We’re in good form.”advertisement”Obviously Mercedes are clear favorites, but we’re here to race.”Leclerc had the quickest time in the first of the three qualifying sections but slipped back to third and then fifth.Both Renault drivers missed the last stage of qualifying with Nico Hulkenberg 11th after the second run and Daniel Ricciardo 12th in his first qualifying session for his new team.Pierre Gasly ended his first qualifying run for Red Bull in the garage and was among the five drivers who failed to progress out of the first qualifying section.He was joined by Williams drivers George Russell and Roberta Kubica, who slid off the track after puncturing a tire and had the slowest time of all 20 vehicles in his comeback to F1 following injuries he sustained in a serious rallying accident before the start of the 2011 season.For sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byrohan sen Tags :Follow Australian Grand PrixFollow Aus GPFollow Lewis HamiltonFollow Valtteri BottasFollow Mercedes AMGFollow F1Follow Formula One Lewis Hamilton starts 2019 F1 season with record 6th successive pole at Australian GPFive-time world champion Lewis Hamilton overhauled teammate Valtteri Bottas’ leading time with seconds remaining to top qualifying Saturday in 1 minute, 20.486 seconds.advertisementlast_img read more

Speaker rejects resignation of 8 MLAs for not being in proper format

first_imgBengaluru: Days after 13 Congress-JD(S) MLAs submitted their resignation from the Assembly pushing the Karnataka coalition on the brink of collapse, Speaker K R Ramesh Kumar Tuesday rejected letters of eight such legislators for not being in order and asked them to send letters as per the correct format.”I have to make a conscious decision. Every step I take will become history, so I can’t be committing a mistake. Future generations should not look at me like an accused,” Kumar said. Follow LIVE UPDATES Here Also Read – IAF Day: Tributes paid to soldiers killed in line of duty in Jammu The Speaker also asked five MLAs whose resignations are in order to meet him personally on Friday and Monday. Meanwhile, his office is also examining the letter of suspended Congress MLA Roshan Baig who submitted his resignation earlier in the day. Congress party supporters climb atop police barricades during a protest near the Indian parliament in New Delhi. (AP) Questioned on whether the Congress legal cell had written to him that the resignations should not be accepted, Kumar said he has not seen the letter yet. “I left the office on Saturday. I came only today. Whichever cell has written, I have to go through it now,” he told journalists at the Vidhana Soudha. “Whether I will decide it today or in the next two hours, doing it two years later, these are all irrelevant questions to me. I have to respond to the sentiments of the people.” Also Read – Shashi Tharoor writes to PM Modi: Don’t let your ‘mann ki baat’ become ‘maun ki baat’Congress leaders protest ‘BJP conspiracy’ in front of the Gandhi statue between Vidhana Soudha and Vikasa Soudha in Bangalore. Express Photo/Darshan Devaiah The Speaker’s decision asking dissident MLAs to resend their resignations is likely to give some much-needed breathing time to the coalition parties as BJP looks to gain momentum over the spate of resignations. The resignations have left the coalition with 103 MLAs in the reduced house while the BJP has 105 MLAs and the support of two independents who withdrew support to the coalition on Monday. The rebel MLAs — along with two independent MLAs — are said to be camping somewhere in Maharashtra and have most likely switched their loyalty to the BJP.(With inputs from Indian Express)last_img read more

New Brunswick follows PEI and signs childcare funding deal with Ottawa

first_imgOTTAWA – New Brunswick and P.E.I. have signed child-care funding agreements with Ottawa, one year after the four Atlantic provinces demanded the Liberal government provide extra cash to cover what they said were their unique regional needs.After signing a funding deal Tuesday with the Island government, Social Development Minister Jean-Yves Duclos travelled to New Brunswick with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Wednesday to finalize a second deal, the third since negotiations began earlier this year.“Since the beginning of our mandate, supporting Canadian families has been one of our government’s top priorities,” Trudeau told a news conference at a child-care centre in Moncton, where he was flanked by New Brunswick Premier Brian Gallant and a gaggle of provincial and federal cabinet ministers.“Not all children are lucky enough to have a healthy environment in which to grow and that has to change.”Trudeau said the federal government would invest $30 million over three years on early learning and child-care in New Brunswick, and he said the province would kick in another $41 million.The decision to sign deals comes just over a year after the premiers of New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia and P.E.I. asked Trudeau for extra child-care cash to cover the higher costs of covering rural populations.The letter to Trudeau was the second effort by the four provinces to secure extra money to address challenges in their region with accessibility to regulated child care — a key Liberal requirement to access funding.Federal officials reviewing the request told Duclos in October 2016 that the four provinces provided no evidence that they have higher costs compared with other provinces and territories. A briefing note at the time suggested the existing federal offer would be more than enough to cover each province’s costs.The Canadian Press obtained copies of the letters and briefing note under the Access to Information Act.The federal government is offering each province a base of $2 million in annual funding, topped off with extra cash calculated on a per-capita basis. That means roughly $3.5 million a year for P.E.I., and about $145 million annually for Ontario, the first province to sign on.“Over the last couple weeks, we have worked with provinces and territories to ensure available funding goes to the programs they feel are the most important,” said Duclos spokeswoman Emilie Gauduchon-Campbell.P.E.I. plans to spend its money on creating more spaces for children whose parents work seasonally or non-standard hours, as well as Acadian and French-speaking communities, and provide professional development courses for early childhood educators.A spokeswoman for Doug Currie, P.E.I.’s child-care minister, said the province was pleased with the funding in its agreement, believing it would address the concerns raised in the letters.The New Brunswick government says the new money will be used to create more child-care spaces, including 200 more spaces for infants and toddlers.The new funding will also be used to transform at least 300 child-care providers into designated New Brunswick Early Learning Centres, which will provide more spaces, have lower fees and implement inclusion policies for francophone minority communities.Trudeau said the centres will reduce the cost of services for almost 10,000 children, with priority given to low- and middle-income families.A spokeswoman for Nova Scotia’s education department said the province believes federal cash will be instrumental in helping it support its child-care goals.Newfoundland and Labrador appeared content with their funding. Spokeswoman Vanessa Colman-Sadd said the province would be happy to receive about $7.5 million annually once their agreement is signed.The federal government plans to spend $1.2 billion on child care over the next three years under the three-year funding agreements it is seeking with provinces.The money is part of the $7.5 billion the Liberals promised to spend on child care over 11 years, beginning with $500 million this year and increasing to $870 million annually by 2026 in order to pay for spaces — or improvements — in provinces and territories.That also includes funding for Indigenous child-care both on and off-reserve.last_img read more

Indigenous woman says shut down of Saskatchewan bus service will cost lives

first_imgThe Canadian PressAn Indigenous woman in Regina says she believes “people are going to die” because of the Saskatchewan government’s decision to shut down the provincial bus service.Connie Deiter said that’s why she has filed a complaint with the human rights commission alleging that the decision discriminates against her and other Indigenous women.Deiter said First Nations women took the bus because they couldn’t afford couldn’t afford cars.Read the Notice: STC“If you’re poor, you don’t have access to a vehicle, a lot of our people don’t, the only option is to hitchhike and that’s already happening,” Deiter said Thursday.“You’ll see people hitchhiking on the road now where they probably would have been taking (the bus). You never used to see them hitchhiking before … but now you’re seeing men and women with their luggage and their children. I saw that in Fort Qu’Appelle just a couple of days ago.”A friend picked up a First Nations elder who was walking with a cane and suitcase, Deiter said.She said a woman disappeared about two weeks ago while hitchhiking from Yorkton to North Battleford.“And this has been less than a month since the STC closed, so yeah I think we are looking at ‘Highways of Tears’ all over the province,” she said.Her reference was to a notorious stretch of highway in northern British Columbia that became known as the “Highway of Tears” after 18 women were murdered or disappeared since the 1970s.The Saskatchewan government said it would be inappropriate to comment on the complaint because the matter is before the human rights commission.The government shut down the 70-year-old Saskatchewan Transportation Co. at the end of May as part of an effort to tackle a $1.3 billion deficit.STC reported a net loss of $13 million in the 2015-2016 fiscal year and the government said it would need $85 million over the next five years to keep operating.The government hopes private companies will fill the void.Deiter said she’d like to see a system that’s partially funded or organized by the Saskatchewan government.In British Columbia, First Nations leaders and mayors pushed the government to fund transportation along Highway 16, which stretches between Prince George and Prince Rupert.The B.C. government finally came up with a transportation plan last year, but only after a decade of advocacy and a 2012 report from a missing women inquiry that recommended bus service along the 700-kilometre corridor where people often hitchhike to get around.Deiter said the change was only made after women died.She hopes Saskatchewan doesn’t wait for that to happen.“I just hope that the provincial government shows some sympathy or some empathy for those people who are going to be hitchhiking,” said Deiter.“I hate to be the one that’s being a foreteller of bad times, but I mean people are going to die and I’m hoping that there’s going be some sort of a change.”news@aptn.calast_img read more

Less than 15 aircraft of Jet currently operational Aviation Secy

first_imgNew Delhi: Less than 15 aircraft of Jet Airways are currently operational, Civil Aviation Secretary P S Kharola said on Wednesday. The SBI-led consortium of lenders had taken over the management of the cash-hit Jet Airways last month. Asked about the active fleet of the beleaguered airline, the Civil Aviation Secretary said here that “yesterday, it was 28”. On the airline informing stock exchanges on Tuesday evening that 15 more aircraft have been grounded, Kharola said the current fleet “would be less than about 15”. The airline has around 119 aircraft in its fleet. In the last few weeks, the airline has been grounding its aircraft in tranches due to non-payment of dues to lessors. Regarding funding issues of the airline, Kharola – who was speaking on the sidelines of an event – said, “The issue is between bankers and Jet management. So they are discussing with each other.” The private carrier Tuesday said it has grounded 15 more aircraft due to non-payment of rentals to lessors. Till last month, the Mumbai-headquartered airline, which is now under the new ownership, had taken 54 planes out of operations due to lease rental defaults. On March 25, Jet Airways’ board approved a resolution plan formulated by SBI-led domestic lenders. Under the plan, lenders decided to take control of the airline and make a fund infusion of Rs 1,500 crore.last_img read more

Target Fiscal 1Q Earnings Snapshot

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) _ Target Corp. (TGT) on Wednesday reported fiscal first-quarter profit of $795 million.The Minneapolis-based company said it had net income of $1.53 per share.The results topped Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of 10 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.43 per share.The retailer posted revenue of $17.63 billion in the period, also topping Street forecasts. Five analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $17.54 billion.For the current quarter ending in August, Target expects its per-share earnings to range from $1.52 to $1.72. Analysts surveyed by Zacks had forecast adjusted earnings per share of $1.58.The company expects full-year earnings in the range of $5.75 to $6.05 per share.Target shares have risen 9% since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has risen 14%. The stock has dropped 6% in the last 12 months._____This story was generated by Automated Insights (http://automatedinsights.com/ap) using data from Zacks Investment Research. Access a Zacks stock report on TGT at https://www.zacks.com/ap/TGTThe Associated Press read more

On Mother Earth Day UN Member States urged to promote harmony with

Today is a “chance to reaffirm our collective responsibility to promote harmony with nature,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon told the Interactive Dialogue on Harmony with Nature held to mark International Mother Earth Day.Noting this year’s theme, Faces of Climate Change, Mr. Ban urged the UN General Assembly “to confront the hard truth that our planet is under threat.” He noted that unsustainable exploitation of natural resources is eroding fragile ecosystems, destroying biodiversity, depleting fish stocks by short-sighted commercial fishing and threatening marine food chains by raising the acidity in oceans.“When we threaten the planet, we undermine our only home – and our future survival,” Mr. Ban said, calling on countries to ensure that upcoming development strategies include measures to support and sustain Mother Earth.“On this International Day, let us renew our pledges to honour and respect Mother Earth,” Mr. Ban urged.In his speech, Mr. Ban also noted the growing momentum among world leaders to support sustainable development, citing in particular the efforts of Bolivia, which adopted a legal framework that specifically protects Mother Earth, with the rights of nature included in the national Constitution, and which led the effort to create the Day. Since 2009, the UN General Assembly has marked International Mother Earth Day on Earth Day or 22 April, expressing its conviction that, to achieve a just balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations, “it is necessary to promote harmony with nature and the Earth.”The General Assembly’s current president, Vuk Jeremic, emphasized that “the irreversible torrent of physical and ecological transformations across the globe is threatening us with a future reality that is profoundly different from anything that we have experienced until now.”As a result, the General Assembly is planning for a series of events to boost the efforts towards the 2015 anti-poverty targets known as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and the post-2015 agenda. These include the Secretary-General’s high-level panel of eminent persons created in the wake of the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (Rio+20). To take place at the end of May.The General Assembly also plans to hold a thematic debate on 16 May on the nexus of water and energy, organized in collaboration with the newly established UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network and the United Arab Emirates, Mr. Jeremic said. Meanwhile, the UN Environment Programme (UNEP) and the UN Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) today launched the “Think-Eat-Save: Reduce Your Footprint” Campaign aimed at reducing at least one-third of all food produced that never makes it from the farm to the fork. The countdown comes ahead of World Environment Day, marked annually on 5 June.As part of the effort, UNEP is calling on people across the world to share their traditional knowledge and ideas of food preservation whether it be biltong in South Africa, pickling or jam making, sauerkraut in Germany, or the way shark meat is ripened and preserved in ice in Iceland. “Every loss and waste of food represents a loss of the energy involved in growing the food in the first place, and the fuel spent needlessly on transporting produce from farms to shops and homes, often across the globe,” UNEP Executive Director, Achim Steiner said in his message for the Day.Mr. Steiner added that a “small but significant amounts of methane – a powerful greenhouse gas – are linked to food thrown away into the globe’s landfills, in addition to emissions linked with livestock and forests cleared for food that is never eaten.”In addition, FAO today announced that it has adopted the first Global Plan for Action for the Conservation, Sustainable Use and Development of Forest Genetic Resources. According to a news release, FAO’s Commission on Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture adopted the plan last week and are set for final approval of it in June.Among the key priority areas for action include improving the availability of and access to information on forest genetic resources; development of the worldwide conservation strategy; and sustainable use, development and management of forest genetic resources.The UN just wrapped up a two-week Forum on Forests in Istanbul, Turkey, to promote the management, conservation and sustainable development of all types of forests and to strengthen long-term political commitment.Estimates of the number of tree species worldwide vary from 80,000 to 100,000, UNEP said. Forest ecosystems remain essential refuges for biodiversity, and 12 per cent of the world’s forests are designated primarily for the conservation of biological diversity.Following his presentation to the Mother Earth Day event, Secretary-General Ban today spoke to partners of his initiative called Sustainable Energy for All. Given the threats to the planet from energy consumption and the fact that over a billion people lack of access to electricity, Mr. Ban said: “We need a paradigm shift – a transformation – in the way we produce, use and share energy.” read more

A Simple KnicksProof Proposal To Improve The NBAs Draft Lottery

Pelicans3850.5100.4 That’s more proportionate to the small difference separating Minnesota, New York and Philly in the standings.Here’s how the lottery balls would have been distributed in each of the past 10 seasons.4For 2012, which was shortened by a labor dispute, I’ve prorated loss totals to an 82-game schedule. On average, the worst team would have had about a 25 percent chance of winding up with the top pick, as it does now. But those chances would have been as high as 38.5 percent (for the record-setting 2012 Charlotte Bobcats) or as low as 19.0 percent (for the 2013 Orlando Magic), depending on how much separated the very worst team from the almost-as-bad ones. In a year like 2010, in which there was a big gap between the second-worst team (the 15-67 Timberwolves) and the third-worst (the 25-57 Sacramento Kings), that’s where the sharpest break in lottery chances would have been.It’s not the radical change that I’d prefer! But it’s a simple enough reform that even the Knicks couldn’t screw it up.CORRECTION (April 15, 3:36 p.m.): An earlier version of the chart in this post gave the incorrect location of the second-worst NBA team in 2005. At that time, the Hornets were located in New Orleans, not Charlotte. Suns4360.6100.4 TEAMLOSSESLOTTERY BALLSCHANCE OF FIRST PICKLOTTERY BALLSCHANCE OF FIRST PICK Lakers6011911.936112.7 Nets4470.7100.4 Hornets49171.7642.3 76ers6415615.652918.6 Knicks6519919.957620.3 Jazz4480.8100.4 Magic57888.82569.0 Timberwolves6625025.0%62522.0% Kings54636.31696.0 Nuggets52434.31214.3 Pistons50282.8812.9 CURRENT SYSTEMREVISED SYSTEM The New York Knicks did something unusual Monday night: They won a basketball game — just their 17th this season. What wasn’t so unusual — from a franchise that starred in such tragicomedies as Amar’e Stoudemire punching a fire extinguisher and Andrea Bargnani nearly snatching defeat from the jaws of victory — was the Knicks’ poor sense of timing. Having spent most of the season ridding their roster of anyone who could possibly help them win, the Knicks have now won twice in a row.Those two wins could make a lot of difference to the Knicks’ chance of drafting Jahlil Okafor or Karl-Anthony Towns. With one game left for each team, the Knicks are 17-64, a game better than the Minnesota Timberwolves at 16-65. The Philadelphia 76ers have the third-worst record at 18-63.Let’s say each team loses its final game. Under the NBA’s lottery formula, the Timberwolves would have a 25.0 percent chance of landing the first pick, the Knicks would have a 19.9 percent shot, and the Sixers a 15.6 percent chance.That seems like an awfully big difference for teams that are separated by just one or two games in the standings. But it’s how the NBA’s rules work. The number of losses doesn’t matter, only the order of the teams.1The league does, at least, split the difference in the event of ties, so if the Knicks and Timberwolves each finish at 17-65, they’ll each have about a 22.5 percent chance at the first pick.There’s a better way to award those pingpong balls, one that maintains the spirit of the current lottery system without allowing a one-game difference to matter so much.Here’s how it works. Take each team’s number of losses. Subtract 41 (41-41 represents a breakeven record in the NBA). Then square the result. That’s how many pingpong balls a team gets. (OK, one more provision: A team gets a minimum of 10 lottery balls, including if it has a winning record.2Otherwise, a team with a winning record would get more lottery balls than a team with a 41-41 record, since subtracting 41 from a number less than 41 and squaring the result would produce a positive number.)That might seem arbitrary — but it produces results that are remarkably similar to the current formula, only fairer. What chance would each team have at the first pick this year, for example? Assuming each team’s final game goes according to the FiveThirtyEight NBA Power Ratings,3Meaning that the Wolves, Knicks and Sixers all lose. that would leave the Wolves with a 22.0 percent chance at the first pick, the Knicks at 20.3 percent and the Sixers at 18.6 percent. Heat45111.1160.6 read more

Can An Astrophysicist Change The Way We Watch Sports

The vast majority of our collective sports-viewing is on television. Around 21 million people watch an average Sunday Night Football game on TV, for example — some 300 times more than the 70,000 who are able to see it in person. Our sports experience is, to a first approximation, a television experience. I’ve seen Tom Brady play dozens of times, even though I’ve never seen Tom Brady play.And television has been enhancing — or, at the very least, altering — how we watch sports ever since TV was invented. NBC coverage of the 1936 Olympics in Berlin, the first sporting event ever televised, used slow motion footage to “show the form, the poetry of motion” of a pole vaulter.It seems a natural fit. Cameras and technology can do many things our eyes can’t. If we can see closeups of Pluto, surely we deserve a crystal-clear view of Odell Beckham Jr.’s catch. “Keep your eye on the ball” is the child’s earliest and most universal sports lesson. And nowadays we can see just about every little thing that happens to the ball. Or puck.Nearly 20 years ago, on Jan. 20, 1996, at the NHL All-Star Game, FoxTrax made its debut. FoxTrax is better known as a glowing hockey puck whizzing around the screen. Matt Ginsberg’s technology may be able to tell us mortals what the universe already knows — it may let the universe whisper in our ear. We may not have to wait for a resolution. We may, for example, have been able to hear Cinderella’s death knell just a little bit sooner. Rather than “keep your eye on the ball,” it’s now “keep your eye on where the ball will be.”Sportvision — the company behind football’s 1st & Ten, baseball’s PITCHf/x, sailing’s LiveLine and other tech — has undertaken some real-time projections of a different sort. It has tech that tells TV viewers when one car is expected to pass another in NASCAR, for example. But Hank Adams, Sportvision’s CEO, told me he wasn’t aware of any other technology like Ginsberg’s. It seemed reasonable. “I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he could predict, with some accuracy, whether a ball was going to go in or not,” Adams said.Adams also mused on the implications of Ginsberg’s technology. Its use as a TV storytelling tool may be limited, he said, given the mere second or two that it allows us to see into the future. He was also skeptical that the NBA would allow any in-game use by teams. It could be a valuable coaching tool, he thought. Or in training. Perhaps in a golf telecast. Maybe for players in a volleyball game. Neither of us was really sure. Watch FiveThirtyEight’s Oliver Roeder and Jody Avirgan talk about Ginsberg’s invention. The development of this tech, which looks quaint in retrospect, was a major undertaking. In 1994, an executive vice president at News Corp. promised to develop glow puck technology within two years, for $2 million, according to a 2003 article in IEEE Spectrum. He scooped up a team of 10 with military engineering experience — in radar, underwater sensors and radio-positioning systems — and sought outside help from other defense engineers. It was all hands on deck to track a hockey puck.But the system was discontinued after three years. FoxTrax’s main problem was probably aesthetics. It was distracting, and the puck’s “tail” looked better suited to a comic book than a hockey game. Hockey fans protested, the broadcast rights changed networks, and the phenomenon died.But its developers were undeterred. They turned their attention to a problem that sounds easier, but was much trickier. A couple years later — on Sept. 27, 1998 — the middling Cincinnati Bengals and Baltimore Ravens met in Baltimore. At 8:20 p.m. local time, a technology called 1st & Ten debuted. It’s better known as the yellow first-down line. The yellow line isn’t official — as anyone who’s ever watched a football game on TV could tell you — but the yellow line is beloved. I had 13 good football-watching years under my belt before its introduction, but I can’t remember watching a single game without it. The yellow line is ubiquitous. The yellow line won an Emmy. The yellow line is here to stay. Truth No. 1: Most of us watch sports to see the unexpected. Truth No. 2: Plenty of us want to predict the future.Somewhere, where those two contradictory truths meet, there has been a movement afoot. For decades now, sports-crazed statheads — the sabermetricians and forecasters and moneyballers bent on winning their fantasy leagues, assembling an actual professional team or simply understanding the sports world — have been honing their techniques, trying to find the signal hiding in the noise. In baseball alone, an alphabet soup of player projection systems have been born — ZiPS, CAIRO, CHONE. We just introduced CARMELO to basketball. The movement is trying, in other words, to predict the unexpected.There are some in the movement who want to project the future, quite literally, on the screens in front of our eyes. Somewhere in the foothills of Oregon’s Cascade Mountains, an astrophysicist and his son are working, with the backing of an outspoken billionaire, to bring us just such a glimpse. Armed only with a camera, a laptop and their custom code, they’re working on a system that calls a 3-pointer a swish or a brick, a volleyball serve in or out, a soccer shot over the bar or in the goal, all before the ball completes its flight. If the system works — and that’s a big “if” — it would be equivalent to a minor superpower: flash precognition. The sports fan would become, if only for a second or two, a superhero.And the system is almost done. This, right here, could be the future of sports: Matt Ginsberg is tall and fit with sharp features and, aside from his closely cut grey hair, resembles a 40-year-old rock climber more closely than the 60-year-old technologist and businessman that he is. He’s affable but deeply serious. I first met him in Stamford, Connecticut, in March, at the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament, where he was operating Dr. Fill, his artificial intelligence crossword puzzle solver. In the crossword community, he’s both loved and hated — he’s the guy who might be a little too clever for his own good who’s trying to ruin all the fun with his fancy computer program.His would-be revolution in sports technology grew out of his role as unofficial statistical analyst for the University of Oregon’s women’s volleyball team. He has, among other things, imported basketball’s adjusted plus-minus system to volleyball, and convinced the team’s coach that the way timeouts were traditionally used was inefficient. Last November, while Ginsberg was watching a game, a player hit a serve that, from Ginsberg’s bleacher seat, looked like it was sure to go out. The returning players should’ve simply let the ball go out but they didn’t. Ginsberg was annoyed. “I can fix this. We can have a computer help,” he told me. “I did not realize how hard it would be.”While the development of FoxTrax and 1st & Ten resembled military contracts, Matt Ginsberg’s purported crystal ball was developed in a son-and-pop shop in Eugene, Oregon. Navarre Ginsberg is a 21-year-old programmer and Matt Ginsberg’s son. When I reached Navarre Ginsberg by phone in early October, his dad told me not to take up too much of his time — he had to get the camera working. It was the younger Ginsberg who first suggested to his dad that this technology could be taken far beyond just volleyball. Matt is in charge of the big picture; Navarre is responsible for handling coding issues as they arise, and making sure the damn thing works.The result looks like this. Here’s a Rajon Rondo shot that misses right — as correctly called by the computer: Technologies like these told us more about what we were looking at by putting a visual layer between us and a game on our TV. FoxTrax told us where the puck was at all times. 1st & Ten tells us where a team is trying to go. But they were just building blocks. Data was the next frontier.A torrent of new innovations followed in their wake. The NFL and Zebra Technologies have strapped radio-frequency identification chips onto players this season. The camera-tracking system SportVU has been hailed as the future of the NBA by our friends at Grantland. ProTracer technology has given golf fans something to stare at other than the warm plasma-screen glow of the summer sky. Hawk-Eye technology in tennis powers replay challenges and can track a ball to within mere millimeters. LiveLine, another Emmy winner, does its best to make sailing interesting to watch. And one word — in press releases, company websites and media coverage of these technologies — appears over and over again: “revolutionary.” Layering data on top of a sports broadcast is the frontier.But, as with most revolutions, there is a staunch establishment that leans against the shifting winds. In April, Vice published a philippic against K-Zone, the imaginary strike zone projected on the screen during baseball games. “The calculus at the root of this experiment seems to be that we prefer perfect information to beauty, precision to custom,” Robert O’Connell wrote. And some even rebel against television itself. Each season, the supremacy of radio-baseball to TV-baseball is vocally declaimed by acolytes. “Listening to a game on the radio, while driving along through the night hits some sort of cosmic level of perfection, especially if you can find it on an AM station, with a slight whine from some other signal, scratchy static calling the game in from across time and space,” Todd VanDerWerff, Vox’s culture editor, wrote in his newsletter earlier this month. “The fall of baseball could certainly be tied to the slow decline of radio as well,” he added.The natural-human-beauty-vs.-cold-mechanical-statistics sports debate has been thoroughly litigated, including on FiveThirtyEight. The jury is hopelessly hung. Do you want a dressed-up broadcast? Do you want a television screen augmented with pitch counts and wind speeds and strike zones and Bryce Harper’s velocity running to first? Or do you simply want to tune your dial to AM 720 for the crack of the bat and the passionate, pained voice of Ron Santo, may he rest in peace?I’d guess the split is largely generational. As the aesthetics of real televised sports approach those of sports video games, with their elaborate heads-up displays and options, the younger set may feel more at ease. But there’s more than just aesthetics that sports share with video games. The outcomes of events in both are pre-known, if you know where to look. When you kick a field goal in Madden 16, for example, the path of the ball is already written. Sure, you’ll see the ball fly through the air for a few seconds, and perhaps drift slowly toward the right upright, causing you to clench. But the game and your Xbox already “know” if it’s good or wide right — the kick’s power and distance, the wind, etc. have already been thrown into whatever algorithm and the result already spat out. The anticipation is just an illusion. But isn’t that the same in real life? When Butler’s Gordon Hayward launched the shot that would’ve beaten Duke in the 2010 NCAA final, it hangs in the air for-seemingly-ever — in fact it’s just shy of two seconds — and we don’t know whether it will go in or out. (See Truth No. 1, above.) But the universe “knows.” Physics “knows.” Again, the idea is simple. Almost comically so, judging by illustrations in the patent application.The execution, on the other hand, is not simple. Matt Ginsberg’s training is in astrophysics. He got his Ph.D. from Oxford when he was 24 years old. His doctoral advisor there was the famed mathematical physicist Roger Penrose, and he recalls rubbing elbows with the academic rock stars Stephen Hawking and the late Richard Feynman. He created an artificial intelligence crossword puzzle solver called Dr. Fill and a computer bridge world champion called GIB.Unsurprisingly, there’s pretty heavy math involved to make this real-time sports predictor work. For one element of the system’s calculations, Ginsberg sent me a pdf with eight dense pages of physics diagrams and systems of equations and notes on derivations. It uses something called the Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm. It requires Jacobians and the taking of partial derivatives and the solving of quartics, and code efficient enough to calculate it all up to the split second. If predicting the future were easy, I suppose everybody would do it. (See Truth No. 2, above.)One thing this project can’t predict, however, is its own future. Its uses are, so far, largely speculative, and cashing in on a minor superpower might not be easy. Even gamblers who bet during play would struggle to make much money from a half-second heads-up that a shot is going in. But Ginsberg’s system would find a natural place in the long line of sports technologies that have been used for a singular end — TV. The footage is from a Dallas Mavericks game against the San Antonio Spurs in March. What you see was calculated in real time, but for demonstration purposes the shot itself is slowed down. A computer tracked the ball’s position as well as its projected position, and the three red bars underneath the action indicate the system’s confidence that the ball would miss left, go in, or miss right, respectively. In this clip, it was a Monta Ellis jumper that went in, just as the tech predicted.“Many decisions in sports relate to the trajectory of a ball or similar object, such as a puck or shuttlecock,” reads the patent application for this technology filed in late August. There are three names on the patent application: Matthew L. Ginsberg, Navarre S. Ginsberg and Mavericks owner Mark Cuban. The Ginsbergs have ambitions to spread their technology far and high, including to the NBA and its billionaire owners, including Cuban.When Matt Ginsberg first mentioned this project to me, back in March, he began the conversation like this: “I’m going to revolutionize sports.”His idea is simple: Find a ball with a camera and have it tell a computer what’s up with the ball (or shuttlecock or javelin or frisbee or whatever). Then have the computer calculate, in real time, where the ball’s going. Then turn that into some useful piece of information, knowing what sport we’re watching and the dimensions of that sport’s infrastructure — lines on the ground, baskets in the air, and so on. Have the computer tell you, maybe along with some measurement of its certainty, “that basketball will go in the basket” or “that volleyball will land outside the lines.”Then do something interesting with that fact. Have a red light go off to signal an out-of-bounds serve to the returning team. Have a soccer goalie’s smartwatch buzz if a shot is going to clear the bar, telling her she needn’t parry it and concede a corner kick. Put it on the TV screen for the folks at home. The Ginsbergs are aware of their system’s imperfections, but they share an enthusiasm for what it can become. And they want to get it out into the world, perhaps as soon as this NBA season.“If we haven’t figured out why that’s valuable to a sport yet, we just haven’t thought hard enough yet,” Navarre Ginsberg said.Looking for investors, and an eventual outlet for his project, Matt Ginsberg approached Mark Cuban, the billionaire owner of the Mavericks, in January. The idea had applications beyond volleyball, Ginsberg had realized. Cuban was hesitant, Ginsberg said, until Ginsberg proposed a deal: Give me $50,000, he said, and I’ll develop it, and the Mavericks can use it in one game.“$50,000 to win an NBA game of your choice is incredibly cheap,” Ginsberg recalled telling Cuban. “And you don’t care about the 50 grand but I do. And I’ll also give you a right of first refusal across the NBA.” Cuban wanted two years, and Ginsberg could keep the right of first refusal. Ginsberg agreed. A lawyer came in to iron out the finer points of the deal. The lawyer was suspicious. What the hell were the Mavs even buying? It could be unicorns.Cuban described his involvement in the project to me as “active” — providing tech and design recommendations. But Ginsberg is the brains behind the coding, he said in an email last week. The most promising use of the project, in Cuban’s view? “Real-time predictions on court that can be relayed to the sidelines.” He wouldn’t comment on how the Mavericks intend to use it, if at all.When I asked Cuban how he thought the NBA would respond, he deflected a bit: “It will have amazing real-time applications in the future — things like detecting whether or not a shot was goaltended, in real time, and relaying that information to officials or displaying it on the backboard.”“If we can make basketball more fun to watch on TV, how much is that worth? I am completely clueless.”Ginsberg’s views on the technology’s uses have been evolving dramatically since we first talked in March, but they’ve always been broad. Some uses seem doable; some no doubt pie-in-the-sky. Goaltending, as Cuban suggested, is one humble but useful application. The technology could ensure that goaltending is always called correctly — it analyzes a ball’s arc, so finding the apex of a given ball’s trajectory to check for goaltending would be easy pickings. Another use is volleyball serves. A system like this is legal in NCAA volleyball — or at least it’s not illegal. Yet. (The Ginsbergs are unabashed Oregon Duck homers. “I’m excited about helping my team,” the elder said.) Another is for soccer goalies. The tech could prevent them from ceding unnecessary corner kicks. Another is tennis. Tennis players could train with the technology, and learn in real time what types of passing shots they should let go at the net and which they should go all out to try to volley.But the killer app, in many of our conversations, has been basketball tactics. Imagine, Ginsberg would describe, if the home team’s players knew when their opponents’ shots were going to go in. They’d be signaled — a flashing light, maybe — and most of them could immediately race down to their offensive end, knowing they needn’t play any more defense on that play. A huge advantage; a sea change in basketball strategy.Now, whether that’s practical or would be allowed by the NBA seems questionable, at best. And Ginsberg has backed off this idea somewhat. At the very least, he doesn’t want this tactic available to just one team.“I don’t want to have every basketball fan who doesn’t live in Dallas hating me,” he said. “That would not make my life better.”So what about TV?“There are going to be media applications that I can’t predict, because I’m not a media guy,” he said. “The other thing that’s really become apparent to me, as we’ve gotten closer here, is that I don’t know what I’m doing. In the sense that there’s huge economic value to this. If we can make basketball more fun to watch on TV, how much is that worth to NBC? And I am completely clueless” — so clueless he didn’t realize the NBA hasn’t aired on NBC since 2002. But the system’s not perfect — not yet. It occasionally doesn’t even recognize a shot is happening, or it thinks a pass is a shot, or it simply makes the wrong call after identifying a shot. Here, it thinks a long pass is a long shot: This technology’s future may become a lot clearer very soon. Ginsberg has been taking meetings over the phone. This month, he talked with an NBA executive vice president to discuss what impact this technology should have on the game. And he talked with Marc Lasry, the billionaire hedge-fund manager and co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks, who Ginsberg thinks can help advise him on the economics.But here’s the thing about predicting the future: You’d better be right. In the 13-minute video Ginsberg sent me, the computer was right on 23 of its 30 calls — about ​​77 percent accuracy. It also didn’t recognize a shot, or thought a pass was a shot, on 10 occasions. Even just miscalling a few shots in a game could doom a project like this. If this tech is ever integral to the game — for a broadcaster or a pro team — it’ll be a fine line between the computer as Oracle of Delphi and the computer as useless hunk of junk.The Ginsbergs know this, and have been so busy hammering away at the last pesky nails sticking out of their project that they haven’t even named the thing yet. The patent application calls it Real-Time Sports Advisory System Using Ball Trajectory Prediction — and RTSASUBTP doesn’t exactly roll off the tongue. My suggestion: The tRuth. The technological Babe Ruth. He called his shot, after all. read more

Un village du Var affronte le roi des poubelles

first_imgUn village du Var affronte le “roi des poubelles”Hier, le village de Bagnols-en-Forêt dans le Var s’est confrontée, devant le tribunal correctionnel de Draguignan, au groupe Pizzorno Environnement, soupçonné de pollution dans une décharge.Le tribunal correctionnel de Draguignan a reçu hier, dans sa salle d’audience, un grand nombre des habitants du petit village varois de Bagnols-en-Forêt. En effet, la petite commune a assigné en justice le puissant groupe Pizzorno Environnement qu’elle accuse d’avoir déversé entre 2004 et 2009 plus de 80.000 tonnes de mâchefers, résidus de la combustion de déchets urbains, issus de l’incinérateur d’Antibes.Le maire, Michel Tosan, qui évoque “une mobilisation citoyenne” plutôt qu’une action d’écologistes, a fait campagne aux municipales de 2008 contre la décharge, située sur un terrain de la commune. Sitôt élu, il porte plainte et le parquet de Draguignan ouvre une enquête en 2009, confiée aux gendarmes qui entendent rapidement un témoin anonyme.La plainte porte sur le fait que le groupe Pizzorno a violé l’arrêté préfectoral d’exploitation de la décharge, interdisant l’importation de ce type de déchets sauf autorisation expresse. Pour sa défense, le groupe met en cause le déroulé et la fiabilité de l’enquête et affirme que ces mâchefers étaient “valorisables” et donc licites sur le site. Une pollution des eaux environnantes et souterraines À lire aussiLa Méditerranée est officiellement la mer la plus polluée par le plastiqueL’accusation, elle, soutient le contraire en faisant valoir que leur collecte a été assujettie à une taxe réservée aux déchets voués à être éliminés, qu’ils n’ont pas été réutilisés de façon adéquate et ont donné lieu à des faux en écriture.L’enquête qui a été menée a également révélé la présence, au beau milieu des ordures ménagères, de pneus, de gravats de chantiers et de boues de stations d’épuration. Couplés aux mâchefers et sous la pluie, ils ont engendré une pollution des eaux environnantes et souterraines, imputée à Pizzorno. Le volume perdu dans l’environnement a été évalué à 200 mètres cubes.Il semblerait par ailleurs que le groupe, qui emploie plusieurs milliers de personnes en France et en Afrique, n’en soit pas à son coup d’essai. Ayant réalisé 190 millions d’euros de chiffre d’affaires en 2010, il a obtenu de nombreux marchés publics dans le Var, département dans lequel l’association Environnement Méditerranée a recensé entre 35 et 40 décharges “sauvages”. Il s’agit parfois même de vallons situés en zone Natura 2000, où des entreprises de BTP viennent enfouir leurs gravats à meilleur coût que dans les sites autorisés.Le 7 octobre 2011 à 18:19 • Maxime Lambertlast_img read more

Deputy Governor Extends Best Wishes To Miss HJ Contestants

first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, TCI, November 2, 2016 – Deputy Governor Her Excellency Anya Williams on Tuesday, November 1st, 2016 met with the contestants of the 2016 Miss Helena Jones Robinson High School.  The pageant which is in its 3rd year, will take place on Saturday November 5th, 2016 and was launched as a part of the schools calendar of events.  The theme of this year’s pageant is “Our Heritage” and there are 8 contestants from Forms 3-5.While addressing the group, the Deputy Governor reminded:  “The road to success is paved with many obstacles, but the key is to remain determined and to persevere.  As young ladies you are reminded to always carry yourself in such a manner that exudes poise and grace.  Your high school and college years will later become a part of your legacy as such it is important that maximize every opportunity that is presented to you.”“The purpose of your participation in this pageant is not to win a title or a trophy, but to have an opportunity to publicly display yourselves and your schools in a positive manner.  I would hope that this pageant will help to motivate and to build confidence in your public speaking and leadership amongst other areas.”“I commended the principal and staff of the school on ensuring the continuation of this event and am happy to have assisted in providing sponsorship for this years’ trophies and awards.  I encourage both students and members of the public to give their full support and wish the contestants and school much success.”In closing she added; “I would someday as well like to see a Mr. H.J. title being added to the slate of events as well.”last_img read more

Small brush fire breaks out off Interstate 8 in Descanso

first_img , DESCANSO (KUSI) —The Sweetwater Fire that broke out Friday morning remains at eight acres and holding two hours after it ignited in the East County near Interstate 8 in Descanso, authorities said.The blaze erupted about 9:30 a.m. south of I- 8 just west of Japatul Valley Road, according to Cleveland National Forest firefighters.The fire is mostly contained.The blaze broke out minutes before county officials briefed reporters on the Lilac Fire, which erupted for unknown reasons at about 11:25 a.m. Thursday just west of Interstate 15 and north of Lilac Road in Pala Mesa amid gusty, arid weather.Strong and gusty Santa Ana winds drove the Lilac Fire on Thursday and most of the county remained under a “red flag” wildfire warning Friday due to the winds and low humidity levels. But those conditions were somewhat improved today with weaker winds and higher humidity levels, though the fire threat was still heightened.This is a developing story, we will update the story as information becomes available. Small brush fire breaks out off Interstate 8 in Descanso December 8, 2017center_img Posted: December 8, 2017 Categories: Local San Diego News FacebookTwitterlast_img read more

More Research Needed to Determine Effectiveness of PCS Support Programs RAND Study

first_imgThe need to relocate to a different installation every several years is one of the most stressful aspects of military life, a requirement that hinders the ability of spouses to maintain careers and frequently interferes with children’s progression in school. A new RAND Corp. study found that the multitude of programs, policies and services DOD has implemented to help military families cope with the disruptions caused by permanent change of station (PCS) moves is comprehensive, and it did find evidence of a need for new programs.On the other hand, the researchers were unable to demonstrate that those efforts work. “We don’t have good evidence of the efficacy of the current policy and services,” RAND researcher Patricia Tong told Military.com. “In terms of whether we found that there were gaps in existing policy and services to cover this broad list of disruptions — we didn’t find any,” Tong said.The results, however, indicated there is room to improve the PCS move process to further alleviate family disruptions, particularly by increasing the lead time before a move is scheduled so that service members and their families have more time to plan their relocation. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. William Farrow Dan Cohen AUTHORlast_img read more