Filings Indicate Peabody May No Longer Be a Going Concern

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Taylor Kuykendall for SNL:New securities filings from Peabody Energy Corp. illustrate ongoing stress and the danger of a potential bankruptcy, a path that has become well-trodden by large coal producers in recent years.In one Feb. 29 filing, Peabody said it believes an independent registered public accounting firm may likely be required to issue an audit opinion with a paragraph expressing doubt as to the company’s ability to continue as a going concern. The inclusion of such an uncertainty paragraph would constitute an event of default under the company’s 2013 credit facility agreement.In a separate filing, Peabody disclosed it has engaged in discussions with one of the first lien lenders under its senior secured credit agreement. According to that filing, Peabody’s preference is to pursue liability management transactions, such as proposed debt exchanges, but the lender “expressed its concern that Peabody was not pursuing an in-court restructuring.”The basis of the potential going concern paragraph hinges on whether Peabody can complete a transaction with Bowie Resource Partners LLC. Peabody agreed to sell its El Segundo and Lee Ranch mines in New Mexico and its Twentymile mine in Colorado, but Bowie has had difficulty obtaining financing.Peabody’s struggle has caused “unexpected delays” in filing its annual report for 2015. The company had previously disclosed it accessed the full capacity of its $1.65 billion revolving credit facility.Full article ($): Peabody discloses going concern risk; lender pushing for restructuring in courtIEEFA FEBRUARY 2016 REPORT: PEABODY’S STRATEGIES FOR SURVIVAL IGNORE MARKET REALITIES AND RISK BACKFIRING Filings Indicate Peabody May No Longer Be a Going Concernlast_img read more

Salt Lake Tribune: ‘Utah’s Coal-Export Deal Still Faces High Hurdles’

first_imgSalt Lake Tribune: ‘Utah’s Coal-Export Deal Still Faces High Hurdles’ FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Utah Legislature last week approved a $53 million investment in an Oakland, Calif., export terminal, but the state’s coal-shipping aspirations may still be just a dream.So far, Utah is the only entity that may pledge money toward building a $275 million bulk-freight terminal at the deep-water port under construction at the site of the former Oakland Army Base.But Utah wouldn’t pay up until $200 million in private financing is secured — and the identity of those investors and the status of their contributions is unknown.Another hurdle: Utah’s money wouldn’t be released until the four rural Utah counties borrowing it for the investment have a plan to pay it back if the terminal can’t move coal profitably. No plan has been offered.The coal-producing Utah counties of Carbon, Sevier, Sanpete and Emery initially secured a loan from Utah’s Permanent Community Impact Fund to invest $50 million in the proposed terminal, in exchange for 49 percent of its 9.5-million-metric-ton loading capacity.However, the Utah Attorney General’s Office apparently declined to sign off on the loan, necessitating last week’s passage of SB246 as a legal workaround.Normally, money from the fund — derived from federal mineral royalties — is spent on civic projects in the counties where mining and drilling occur. But in recent years, county commissioners who run the Community Impact Board (CIB) have become interested in funding grander projects that would deliver commodities to market.SB246, which Gov. Gary Herbert is expected to sign, circumvented limits on how counties may spend revenues from the fund. It cycles community impact revenue — critics call it “laundering” — through the state Transportation Fund and back to the CIB in a new pool of money known as the “Throughput Infrastructure Fund,” which also can be tapped to build transmission lines, pipelines and rail.When the CIB first approved the loan in April 2015, it included an additional $3 million to cover administrative costs — such as paying consultants like Jeff Holt, a former Utah Transportation Commission chairman who brokered the deal between the counties and the CIB.The CIB’s approval was premised on Holt’s claim that the $200 million in private financing needed to build the Oakland Bulk and Oversized Terminal would be secured by June 2015.“This benchmark has been missed. That means the only player in this transaction with an open checkbook and a deep pocket is the state of Utah,” said critic Tom Sanzillo, director of finance for the Institute of Energy Economics and Financial Analysis.Full article: Utah’s coal-export deal still faces high hurdleslast_img read more

Influential U.K. Investors Say Renewable Energy Transition Is Well Under Way

first_imgInfluential U.K. Investors Say Renewable Energy Transition Is Well Under Way FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Financial Times, op ed by Anton Eser. chief investment officer, and Nick Stansbury, fund manager and commodity specialist,  Legal & General Investment Management:The global energy system is on the cusp of a revolution and investors in the sector risk sleepwalking into a period of momentous change. Most agree that future energy markets are going to look very different from how they look today but there is a real risk that the transition happens faster than many expect — with significant consequences for investors who fail to prepare now. Energy really matters to investors. The industry has nearly $10tn of invested capital and just two large energy companies providing approximately 20p in every £1 of dividend income from the FTSE 100. We are in the early phases of a transition to a low-carbon future. This marks the third “transition” that energy systems have gone through since the start of the industrial revolution. The first was the rise of coal and the second the rise of oil — this time, it is the rise of renewables. These transitions historically have had far-reaching and dramatic implications that were underestimated at the time. Some commentators are basing their expectations for the pace of this transition on that of previous energy transitions. However, prior transitions were driven primarily by economics: coal replaced biomass because new technology enabled it to become a fundamentally better energy source — the pace of change was driven by economic merit. This transition may well be different. Change is not being driven by technology (although it is enabled by it) but by social imperative and government policy. The public is no longer accepting ever-worsening pollution and the unrelenting rise of carbon emissions with the terrible consequences that would result. The pace of change may therefore be a lot faster than historic precedent would suggest. More ($): Investors Must Face History’s Third Energy Transitionlast_img read more

Low oil prices to test U.S. fracking companies

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享The Wall Street Journal ($):The rapid decline of U.S. oil prices will test the claim of fracking companies that they can now prosper at $50 a barrel or less, a price level they have found challenging in the past.For years, the companies behind the U.S. oil and gas boom, including Noble Energy Inc. and Whiting Petroleum Corp., have promised shareholders that they have thousands of prospective wells that they can drill profitably even at $40 a barrel. Some have even said they can generate returns on investment of 30%.But most shale drillers haven’t made much, if any, money at those prices. From 2012 to 2017, the 30 biggest shale producers lost more than $50 billion. Last year, when oil prices averaged about $50 a barrel, the group as a whole was barely in the black, with profits of about $1.7 billion, or roughly 1.3% of revenue, according to FactSet.The disconnect between the figures cited by companies and their corporate returns lies in the widespread use of a metric called a break-even, often defined as the selling price frackers say they need to generate a small profit on individual wells or projects. While the figure can be quite low for some companies in certain hot spots, it can be a misleading measure of their overall profitability in periods of lower prices.For one, break-evens generally exclude such key costs as land, overhead and even at times transportation. Companies also frequently tout the low break-even price point of a portion of their holdings, without citing the higher price for crude needed to profitably exploit the rest, or adjusting for the inflated cost for drilling contractors and other services that come with rising oil prices.Estimates by consulting firm R.S. Energy Group peg break-evens excluding land costs and overhead at about $37 for the Permian Basin of West Texas and New Mexico, $42 for the Eagle Ford in South Texas and $47 for the Bakken in North Dakota. But companies require much higher oil prices in order to come out ahead if more of those necessary expenses are taken into account, the consulting firm’s data show. All-inclusive break-evens are about $51 in the Permian, $57 in the Eagle Ford and $64 in the Bakken, according to R.S. Energy.More ($): Big fracking profits at $50 a barrel? Don’t bet on it Low oil prices to test U.S. fracking companieslast_img read more

Remembering a Friend

first_imgThe sun shone brightly on the rolling fields of Warren Wilson College, illuminating the pack of riders who pedaled their way to the ash garden where they watched our young friend Callum Robertson return to the ground in his final epic ride.Brave friends and family stepped up to the pulpit in the packed chapel Saturday afternoon, remembering Callum’s smile, his energy, his love, his creativity, the adoration for his family, and, like any good rider, his propensity to exaggerate for the sake of a good story.It was confusing almost, that it was a funeral, rather than a wedding, as his family was in the midst of rejoicing over his choice in Caitlin Thomas as his bride. She, dressed in the brightest colors of the sun, professed her love to him at his funeral instead.We all marveled at how closely he melded the circles of friends, leaving us all in merely two degrees of separation. More than 20 people gathered on Sunday in Brevard to ride Callum’s favorite trails, blessed by a warm and sunny day. Afterward we packed the Altamont Brewery and welcomed the parade of bikes that rode across West Asheville via Haywood Road.I hope that his family will soon find peace in this tragedy and know that they blessed us all by raising a boy filled with beauty, which he easily bestowed on those he loved.Swannanoa–Callum Miles Robertson, 27, passed away Friday January 6, 2012 at his home. He was born June 7, 1984 to Ian Charles and Victoria Elaine Muscott Robertson. He is also survived by his fiancée Caitlin Thomas; sister Hannah Robertson of Chesapeake, VA; Victoria Winters of Scotland, UK; brother-in-law Matthew Freel of Chesapeake, VA; grandparent, William Muscott of Carlisle, UK; uncle Keith Muscott, aunts Lyn and Elaine, and cousins, all of the UK; nephew Logan Miles Robertson Freel; and niece Corinna Rose Robertson Freel. Callum was a graduate of Asheville High School, and attended Sheldon Jackson College of Alaska, and Warren Wilson College.Ian, Victoria and Hannah Robertson are sad to share news of the death of their beloved son and brother, Callum (6/7/84 to 1/6/12). Callum lived life to the fullest, enjoyed adventure, and travels worldwide with friends and family. He was an avid and competitive mountain biker, loving and generous friend to many, and a joy to be around. He could create and make beautiful objects from clay, wood, or metal and bicycle parts. We had rejoiced in his recent engagement to Caitlin Thomas with whom we share our grief. We do not want flowers. If you wish to remember Callum, please donate to the Warren Wilson College Mountain Bike Team or the Montessori Learning Center of Asheville, a non-profit preschool Callum loved, and support both of these programs. We take only magnificent and wonderful memories of Callum with us into the future.Join us in a celebration of Callum’s life at 2 p.m. Saturday, January 14, 2012 at Warren Wilson Chapel, with a reception after at the Fellowship Hall. Officiating will be Steve Runholt and Jeanne Sommer. Following this, his ashes are to be placed at the Warren Wilson cemetery. We invite those who want to participate to join us on a mountain bike ride through the fields or by car to the cemetery. Time will be given to allow sharing of memories at the chapel and the cemetery. Visit our community site: Robertson and Thomas Family Support Powered by Lotsa Helping Hands.last_img read more

The Tough Get Going

first_imgNot only is the mild winter pouring cold rain down our backs as we wish our way through another “riding” weekend, but the bacteria running rampant without a good freeze are causing sniffles, sore throats and weeks of hacking coughs.I know some people like to believe that as they are coming down with something it’s best to ride hard to flush it out of the system, but I don’t believe that. I think that only causes the body to be worn down, allowing whatever virus or bacteria to take advantage of the weakened state.One good example is that whenever I go through periods of working my body really hard for several weeks, pushing every ride or run, I end up sick. I think that when all the nutrients are used up and the muscles are fatigued, slurping up every bubble of oxygen and spare B vitamin, that it takes only the smallest of germs to have its way.Those kind of riding weeks allow me to sleep better, that’s for sure, falling into bed exhausted. It’s nights like that when I don’t even move, and upon waking in the morning feel more like I’ve survived a coma and now have a numb limb from the way I’ve slept on it. Then again, it’s hard to remember that, because now I fall into bed exhausted over being beaten all day by the children. I’m lucky to get a quick ride in, and am too much of a weenie to pull the baby in the trailer any more. Or maybe it’s the argument I don’t want to have with him, because he now is adept at voicing his refusals to get in the contraption any more. Maybe I need to make it look more like a motorcycle and he’d want to. Although I find that when wearing an iPod up very loud he doesn’t complain near as much…So the bacteria in these warm winters are not getting killed off, and nearly every door handle seems to be coated in germs. I cringe every time I see my 3-year-old with his fingers in his mouth. Even my 8-year-old, who has only been sick twice in his life got the strep throat. We got it at the same time, as I cannot stop smooching my children, even through a veil of snot. I started my antibiotics before becoming miserable and was ecstatic at my planning since I was to leave on a much-needed week-long solo trip.Three days into my trip the soldiers began falling around me, fevered and groaning as I rushed to the store for Emergen C, green juice and antibacterial fluid for everything that had been touched. I’ve been working out every day, so I just know that these bugs are going to gang up on me and can almost hear them laughing out loud.Today I will not work out. I will jump on this motorcycle instead, heading up Pacific Coastal Highway 1 to Big Sur where I will soak my bones in the hot springs at Esalen Institute. A girl’s gotta’ do what a girl’s gotta do…last_img read more

Appalachian Trail Dispatch: A Cold Start

first_img Mile 0: Getting Started from Horizonline Pictures on Vimeo.Editor’s Note: Blue Ridge Outdoors contributor Chris Gallaway is currently thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail. He will be periodically checking in with BRO and sharing the story of his hike. This is his first dispatch from the A.T.Hiking in winter presents as many challenges as rewards. Leading up to my thru-hike, the winter in the Southeast had be very mild and rainy. Within a few days of starting my hike I encountered ice storms on the mountaintops, nighttime temps in the teens and single digits, and one big snowstorm that revealed a fascinating network of animal tracks crossing the forest floor. This is a collection of raw images captured in the first two weeks on the trail.Click the image to see a larger version and play a slideshow. center_img last_img read more

Nominate Your Conservation Heroes with Wild South’s 8th Annual Roosevelt-Ashe Conservation Awards

first_imgWild South Seeks Nominations for 8th Annual Roosevelt-Ashe Conservation Awards for Outstanding Contributions to Environmental Conservation in the South.Wild South invites the public to submit nominations for the 8th Annual Roosevelt-Ashe Conservation Awards. The awards recognize outstanding contributions to environmental conservation in the South during the past year. Awards will be given and top nominees recognized in each of the five categories:• Outstanding Small Business•  Outstanding Journalist•  Outstanding Educator•  Outstanding Youth•  Outstanding Conservationist.On May 7, 2016, top nominees and award winners will be honored at the 8th Annual Wild South Green Gala at The Millroom in Asheville, North Carolina.GreenGalaLogoFull2016Nominations are accepted from across the South and can be submitted online by April 1, 2016 at www.wildsouth.org/nominations. Top nominees and winners will be selected by the Roosevelt-Ashe Selection Committee. Members of this committee are conservation leaders in the region and include:•Katie Hicks, Associate Director of Clean Water for North Carolina (Asheville, NC)•Jake Wheeler, Creative Director of RootsRated (Chattanooga, TN)•Frank Peterman, Co-founder and Senior Business Manager for the Diverse Environmental Leaders National Speakers Bureau (Fort Lauderdale, FL)•Audrey Peterman, Member of the Board of Trustees of National Parks Conservation Association (Fort Lauderdale, FL)•Dusty Allison, Digital Publisher of Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine (Asheville, NC)•Kathleen Williams, Founding Executive Director of Tennessee Parks and Greenways Foundation (Nashville, TN)•Pete Conroy, Director of Environmental Policy & Information Center of Jacksonville State University (Jacksonville, AL)•Camille Bowman, Architectural Conservator (Gadsden, AL)•Mary Topa, Executive Director of Georgia Forest Watch (Dahlonega, GA)The nomination form can be accessed directly here. We look forward to reading your nomination and to recognizing your conservation heroes!last_img read more

How To: Eagle, Colorado

first_img About two hours west of Denver (126 miles to be exact) rests the town of Eagle, Colorado. If you’re like Roxy and me, then you’ve likely heard of, driven past, or even stopped in Eagle for a quick tank of gas on your way further west. We have a feeling you’ll be hearing a lot more about this town at the west end of the Eagle River Vally in the future. With a modest population of around 6,500, this beautiful small town has us wanting to come back for more.In Colorado, we are fortunate to have an endless amount of outdoor recreation at the tip of our Subaru’s tires. Eagle takes that mentality and goes above and beyond. It has the outdoor lifestyle ingrained in the fabric of their community.Eagle has integrated single track sidewalks for mountain bike commuters. They weave alongside sidewalks and allow riders to hop on and off the pavement as they choose. They have a bike rack on every corner, and bike stands for working on your bike on every other corner. There’s really no reason to drive because the town is so bike friendly. Eagle is home to Colorado’s longest pump track, and a giant BMX course that’s free to the public. There’s also a local pool and ice rink with showers for stinky riders (like us). The town is in the beginning stages of building a brand new whitewater park on the Eagle River, a stone throw from breweries and coffee shops. Eagle also has a little known secret… If you start at city hall you can bike to their incredible 100+ miles of world-class single track mountain bike trail system without having to pack your car and drive to a trailhead.EatWe started our day at Red Canyon Cafe. This cafe serves up tasty breakfast sandwiches and a great cup of coffee. Eagle has a surprising amount of highly rated coffee shops for a small town. Need to get some work done? Or do you prefer a quick post-lunch cold brew before you hit another round of trails? Yeti’s Grind is the perfect stop for a stellar cup of cold brew. Roxy snagged an iced coconut late and it was delicious. If you’re in need of lunch, why settle for smushed PB&Js when you can hop off the trail right next to the Dusty Boot. This family friendly American restaurant and bar donates $1 from every burger sold to help support Eagle County Biking Trails. Just finished a long day of crushing single track? Don’t feel like chewing? Bonfire Brewing is a must. We stopped in here to catch up on some work and try a few of the newest tap selections. Bonus! They’re completely dog friendly and will give you a free brew for 5,000 feet of climbing.Play (Our Favorite)Bike stuff… All of it. No joke, this is the most expansive trail system you can find this close to the front range. Need to be pointed in the right direction? Visit Eagle’s Website and get the lowdown on all of the trails. If you’d rather speak to a knowledgable human about the trails, or if your bike needs a little love before heading out, we highly recommend stopping in the best bike shop in town, Mountain Pedaler Bike Shop, to see Charlie Brown. Charlie is somewhat of a local legend in Eagle. His killer bike shop has received multiple awards, and he has a trail (and a beer!) named after him. As soon as you step foot in his shop, Charlie will great you with a smile and do everything he can to help you. I took a bit of a tumble on my bike the night before we stopped in Eagle. Charlie helped me get back on the trail as quick as he could.When we stopped by, we had the pleasure of riding the Haymaker trail. A short but oh-so-sweet section of single track less than a mile from town. This trail was professionally built to host the Colorado High School Cycling league State Championships. It’s the kind of trail that you can run laps on and ride it a little differently each time. It starts and finishes at the local rec-center, where you can find the longest pump track in the state. It’s a blast. You’ll also find a very well maintained, large, FREE BMX course. Let’s face it, Colorado is amazing in the summer time but unless you’re spending your afternoons at high elevation, it can get hot. Lucky for you right next to the trailhead is a pool and showers to help you cool off. One last note… The trails are open 6 months out of the year (and some year roud), which isn’t true for many of their mountain neighbors.Biking not your thing? The community of Eagle has also pledged a 0.5% tax increase to help fund a new 4.3 acre Whitewater park on the Eagle River. Anglers will find plenty of epic year-round fishing in the Eagle River, Brush Creek, and Sylvan Lake.StayEagle has several big name hotels with very reasonable rates. When we checked, a room at the Eagle River Lodge was $79.00, and a room at the Best Western Plus Eagle Lodge & Suits was $106.00. For the campers among us, there’s beautiful, free, BLM dispersed camping right up the hill off of Bellyache Road. It’s a great spot where you can bike to and from the trials. There’s also a state park campground right next to Sylvan Lake just outside of town. At Sylvan Lake, you’ll find cabins, yurts, and non-electric campsites. All of which can be reserved on Reserve America. Consider the “Fisherman’s Paradise” Loop for a spot right on the water.Next time your looking to skip the crowds in the front range and can’t justify driving 6 hours for a short weekend mountain bike trip, stop in Eagle. You won’t regret it. Sunset from Cowee Mountains Overlook, on the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina. If you like the gear we’re reppin’, or what we’re wearing, check out some of the sponsors that make this tour possible: La Sportiva, Crazy Creek, National Geographic, RovR Products, Sea to Summit, Mountain House, LifeStraw, and Lowe Alpine.last_img read more

Ultimate Virginia Biking Giveaway

first_imgOR UP TO $359 credit towards a trek bike of your choice! Locally crafted eats and brews in the heart of Old Town Winchester at Roma and Alesatian Brewing Company WEAR(2) PAIRS OF KING TECHNICAL APPAREL SOCKS This contest is over. WIN THIS FULLY LOADED GETAWAY TO WINCHESTER, VA! A unique and immersive 2-night stay FOR TWO at the new Bird’s Nest Tiny House at Hedgebrook Farm EAT + DRINKcenter_img EXPLOREA custom winery and farm market biking tour by Element Sports from your tiny house through the gorgeous surrounding Shenandoah Valley countryside RIDETREK FX BIKE from BLUE RIDGE CYCLERY Enter to win below: STAY Rules and Regulations: Package must be redeemed within 1 year of winning date. Entries must be received by mail or through the www.blueridgeoutdoors.com contest sign-up page by 12:00 Midnight EST on October 31, 2018 – date subject to change. One entry per person. One winner per household. Sweepstakes open only to legal residents of the 48 contiguous United States and the District of Columbia, who are 18 years of age or older. Void wherever prohibited by law. Families and employees of Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and participating sponsors are not eligible. No liability is assumed for lost, late, incomplete, inaccurate, non-delivered or misdirected mail, or misdirected e-mail, garbled, mis-transcribed, faulty or incomplete telephone transmissions, for technical hardware or software failures of any kind, lost or unavailable network connection, or failed, incomplete or delayed computer transmission or any human error which may occur in the receipt of processing of the entries in this Sweepstakes. By entering the sweepstakes, entrants agree that Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and their promotional partners reserve the right to contact entrants multiple times with special information and offers. Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine reserves the right, at their sole discretion, to disqualify any individual who tampers with the entry process and to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Sweepstakes. Winners agree that Blue Ridge Outdoors Magazine and participating sponsors, their subsidiaries, affiliates, agents and promotion agencies shall not be liable for injuries or losses of any kind resulting from acceptance of or use of prizes. No substitutions or redemption of cash, or transfer of prize permitted. Any taxes associated with winning any of the prizes detailed below will be paid by the winner. Winners agree to allow sponsors to use their name and pictures for purposes of promotion. Sponsors reserve the right to substitute a prize of equal or greater value. All Federal, State and local laws and regulations apply. Selection of winner will be chosen at random at the Blue Ridge Outdoors office on or before October 31, 2018 – date and time subject to change. Winners will be contacted by the information they provided in the contest sign-up field and have 7 days to claim their prize before another winner will be picked. Odds of winning will be determined by the total number of eligible entries received. One entry per person or two entries per person if partnership opt-in box above is checked.last_img read more

June 2019: Urban Adventures

first_img @VisitMeckVA The Big Cut: Trump’s New Timber Rule Threatens the Future of Our National Forests Urban Paddling Small is Beautiful: National parks grab most of the headlines, but state parks are thriving, especially in Southern Appalachia.  Features 2019 Paddling Guide You are Being Poisoned The Long Creek Gangsters are the bad boys of Chattooga paddling • Paddler attempts record-breaking 100-mile circumnavigation of Lake Lanier • Wild workouts from the world’s fittest man   On the Cover Departments You don’t have to travel far to squeeze in a day on the water. These nine rivers offer closer-to-home paddling adventure. Hometown Heroes Knoxville’s first climber to summit Everest helps rescue a critically wounded Sherpa along the way. Bear collisions with vehicles are increasing, especially in places like Interstate 40 adjacent to Great Smoky Mountains National Park. What can be done to keep the roads safe for motorists and wildlife?  QUICK HITS Blood in the Snowcenter_img TRAIL MIX Dead Bears on the Highway LAST WORD Photo by Sam Dean @sdeanphotos Top athletes from across the region reveal their 25 favorite urban adventure hotspots.  FLASHPOINT Katie Arnold made a remarkable comeback from a potentially career-ending injury to win the Leadville 100 Mile Race last year. How did she do it? Her first-person essay takes us mile by mile in her footsteps.  Sunrise on Kerr Lake in central Virginia in Mecklenburg The Secret to Winning Leadville Paddling experts pick their personal favorites for whitewater and flatwater fun. Sounds of Summer: 5 big tours rolling through the South Virginia native Bucky Bailey is the central figure in a groundbreaking new Netflix documentary The Devil We Know. Bucky takes on a corporate titan to protect his family and the health of his hometown—and helps reveal a toxin lurking in all of our bodies and homes.  THE GOODS SamDeanPhotography.comlast_img read more

Brazil, an Aspiring Power Strengthening Its Defense Industry

first_img The Brazil that will be inherited by the winner of the election on 30 October is expanding its military power and strengthening its arms industry in giant steps, with commercial objectives but also in order to establish the basis for its access to the great-power club, analysts estimate. The new occupant of the Palacio de Planalto on 1 January will be the first president expected to apply in full the new National Defense Strategy, which has modernized the Brazilian vision of this sector and laid the foundations for a powerful defense industry in the South American giant. In the last eight years, the country has acquired an unprecedented international presence, thanks in part to the charisma of President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva, playing an active role in the most important international forums. And the area of defense is no exception. At the regional level, Brazil promoted the Defense Council of the Union of South American Nations (Unasur), which the countries of the block joined. “Brazil’s transformation into a military power is a new discussion in the country, even for the military. The idea of Brazil as a developed country from the defense perspective and without its traditional alignments is new in the country,” Nelson During, an independent defense specialist, told AFP. For this expert, Brazil’s objective is to strengthen itself from the military perspective “as an independent power.” Brazil’s performance at the head of the military arm of the UN mission deployed in Haiti since 2004 allowed the country to take responsibility for this facet of an international mission in which dozens of countries are involved, achieving in addition an enormous training rotation for its soldiers in a crisis situation. “In January, Brazil lost several soldiers in Haiti (as a consequence of the earthquake), and the country accepted what had happened well. No one asked for the troops to return. Now there’s already talk of sending (Brazilian) blue helmets to Lebanon. This is to say that this active role is already following its own course,” During remarked. The international-relations specialist Sabrina Medeiros told AFP that “Brazil is already seen as a trustworthy associate, but it’s necessary to consolidate a deterrence capability as a support for this new role that the country is playing” in the international diplomatic arena. Brazil “does not suffer from classic or conventional threats, nor are there border disputes, and this demands the adoption of a modern strategy. The new National Strategy is the first step in the process,” in the summary of Carlos Alberto Teixeira, a professor at the Naval War College. Looking forward, the key to this strategy, adopted in 2008, is the decision to establish the basis for an arms industry, with the long-term expectation of turning Brazil into an exporter of military technology. For During, the development of a defense industry “will run into a natural brake, which is the market. It will be very difficult for Brazil to find space in the defense technology market, where there are very powerful actors.” Meanwhile, the country is trying to acquire packets of military technology. The modernization process includes as its most ambitious step the purchase of thirty-six latest-generation fighter planes. The competitors bidding for the project are the French firm Dassault with its Rafale model, the administration’s favorite; the U.S. giant Boeing with its F-18 Super Hornet model; and the Swedish Saab, with its Grippen airplanes. Brazil has already bought from France four Scorpene attack submarines and the shell of a fifth, which will be adapted for a nuclear motor being developed by the Brazilian Navy. The country has also bought from France 50 EC-725 transport helicopters, which will be assembled in Brazil with local workers, and this fleet of helicopters will be completed with 24 Russian Mi-35Ms. At the same time, Brazil signed an association agreement with Italy in June for an Italian firm to manufacture 2,044 armored personnel carriers on Brazilian soil over twenty years. Italy and the United Kingdom are competing with one another for the contracts for ocean-going patrol ships. The Italians want to place their FREMM frigates. Meanwhile, the Brazilian Air Force and the Brazilian civil aerospace firm Embraer are developing the powerful KC-390 airplane, designed to replace the American Hercules C-130. Embraer plans to sell seven hundred KC-390 logistical-transport and troop-transport planes, “one hundred of them in South America,” according to the firm, an emblem of the incipient local defense industry. By Dialogo October 27, 2010last_img read more

Costa Rica: Coast Guard invests in infrastructure, technology

first_imgBy Dialogo July 18, 2012 SAN JOSÉ, Costa Rica – The Costa Rican National Coast Guard Service (SNG) is on a building spree, aiming to open 12 bases along the Pacific and Caribbean coasts by the end of the year, said SNG Director Martín Arias. “We are going to have buildings that are modern and comfortable for our people and close to the communities they work with,” he added. “What the National Police Force does in security work, we are also going to have in our communities.” The SNG, which celebrated the 12th anniversary of its founding in May, has seized more than 30 tons of drugs since 2005 – an amount Arias said is roughly equivalent to US$500 million in profits taken away from international narco-trafficking organizations. The SNG seized more than five tons of narcotics between May 2011 and May 2012. “Thirty tons is an important achievement and I believe the country should feel very confident in a service like ours,” Arias said. The SNG’s growth, in terms of both new stations and new boats in the national fleet, has been funded in part by approximately US$5.5 million in aid from the United States, according to the Public Security Ministry. Of the US$5.5 million, US$3.5 million went toward building an SNG station in Puerto Caldera on the Pacific Coast that opened this past March. The United States also donated two high-tech interceptor boats worth about US$1.8 million. Arias said the SNG spent US$1.2 million to purchase seven interceptor boats from Colombia, with four having already arrived in the Central American nation. The agency is investing US$650,000 to rebuild an older patrol boat as part of a US$3.3 million investment to develop its fleet this year. “We’re looking hard at our coastal fleet,” Arias said. “We’re looking to improve our smaller boats and our interceptor boats, as well as restoring patrol boats that haven’t been used in years.” Arias said the SNG recently opened a new station on the Northern Caribbean Coast near the estuary of the Pacuare River, giving security forces access to the Tortuguero Canals, which have been used by narco-traffickers and poachers who snatch sea turtle eggs. The SNG is building a US$900,000 facility to be inaugurated near the end of August at the Caribbean shipping port in Moín. The SNG also is planning to build a station in the town of Sixaola, near the Panamanian border, Arias said. On the Pacific Coast, the SNG is expected to build a station near the town of Drake and another station, which is part of a joint project with the Environment Ministry, at Puerto Coyote. In November, the Environment Ministry and the Public Security Ministry (MSP) signed an accord to cooperate in the protection of Costa Rica’s marine resources with a focus on illegal fishing. “We are going to open a new Coast Guard station in Nandayure, which is an area where we’ve had little presence,” Arias said. “And in July, we’re going to lay the first stone of the Coast Guard station in Flamingo, in Santa Cruz, which represents an investment of US$1.25 million financed by the government of the United States.” Arias added the SNG would be investing in improvements in a station near Murciélago, close to the Nicaraguan border. Public Security Minister Mario Zamora said the SNG currently has about 44 boats stationed along the Pacific and Caribbean coasts. “The Coast Guard also is in the process of incorporating new technologies, specifically the placement of radar stations, on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts,” Zamora said. Zamora said the SNG will also be adding GPS units to patrol boats, enabling command centers to monitor the status of boats on the high sea. The units will help conserve fuel and ensure captains are patrolling assigned areas. “Today, there are manual systems and the captain of the ships can do what they desire to do,” he added. “With these technological systems, we’re going to incorporate important levels of internal controls.”last_img read more

Attacks in Chile taking a dangerous turn to terrorism

first_img The 2014 attacks By Dialogo October 07, 2014 Anarchism in Chile has been used for decades to fight for the injustices of capitalism, but up until 2014, had never been used to attack innocent civilians. Instead, Chilean based anarchist groups are known for using political inroads to beget education, tax, and political reforms. Today, these groups continue to fight for reform but differing views on how to achieve end goals has resulted in splintering of groups; some of which now have international ties to European violent extremist groups. These same European groups are believed to guide and support extremist cells in Chile. Take for example the CCF. This group is native to Greece, but as evidenced by the Santiago Metro attacks, the CCF has at least one Chilean based cell comprised of Chilean nationals. It also appears that the Chilean cell may have followed guidance released by the CCF in Greece to use everyday items to create explosive devices. This idea is evidenced by the fact that fire extinguishers filled with gunpowder were utilized in both the July and September attacks. CCF affiliation in Chile is concerning, because according to Greek authorities and information released by the news website The Perfect Storm, the CCF’s loose, horizontal structure made of individual cells makes it hard to fight. Also of concern is the fact that some security experts have described this group as a mythological serpent in the sense that once one head is cut off, another pops back up. If this is the case and there are more CCF cells operating in Chile, wiping out the remaining members is imperative to stop future attacks. From anarchism to extreme anarchism Since 2005 anarchist groups have detonated explosive devices in non-populated areas within Chile during late night hours on at least 198 separate occasions, according to Spaniard newspaper El País. Because of the timing and absence of civilian populace during these attacks, no casualties were reported. But recent attacks conducted in July and September 2014 deviated from the original pattern as they were conducted at the Santiago Metro Station, a public transit system used by an estimated 2,500,000 individuals per day. And although the Metro attacks did not result in civilian deaths, they made it clear that extremist cells of anarchist groups are willing and capable of carrying out large-scale terrorist attacks aimed at inflicting multiple casualties at any hour of the day. On July 13, 2014, the last subway car of the night pulled into Los Dominicos stop at the Santiago Metro Station. Per protocol, a subway employee began checking the train cars one by one to ensure they were all empty during which time a backpack was found underneath a seat in the first car. The bag contained a fire extinguisher filled with gunpowder and a clock wired to the device with cables. This incident was immediately reported to subway security and police. In response to the threat, the subway platform was evacuated, and shortly after, the device detonated before authorities even had a chance to look at it. Information released by Chilean news agency Emol indicated that no injuries were reported in conjunction with this attack. However, it represented the first instance in which alleged anarchists dared to detonate an explosive device in a public forum with citizens still present. On September 08, 2014, crowds gathered to enjoy lunch at a fast food restaurant located next to the Escuela Militar metro station in Las Condes neighborhood of Santiago, Chile. At 14:05, a fire extinguisher filled with gunpowder was detonated leaving 14 injured. Following this attack, Peruvian newspaper El Comercio indicated that at least two of the victims suffered full limb amputations, but as in the first attack, no deaths were reported. Hours following the September incident, the Conspiracy of the Cells of Fire (CCF) released an online statement claiming responsibility for both Metro attacks. They further blamed authorities for injuries sustained by civilians and claimed that their target was not the civilian populace, but the “structures, properties and enforcers of power.” In carrying out the two Metro attacks, the CCF not only undermined legitimate anarchist groups dedicated to creating lasting social change, it also highlighted its potential to conduct potential large scale terrorist attacks. But the question still remains, how did a small group coordinate a possible mass casualty terrorist attack and who could have helped them? El País has also reported information indicating that Chilean based extreme anarchists are believed to have ties with Spanish based terrorist groups. Just last year, two Chilean anarchists who were tried and acquitted in connection with the Santiago bombings were later arrested in Spain where they were charged with planting a bomb in a church in Zaragoza. Additionally, at least nine known Spanish terrorists have visited Chile to directly support small scale bombing attacks in recent years. For these reasons and so many more, Chilean ties to international violent extremist groups are concerning as they may serve as the influence for more high profile attacks. Extremist Chilean anarchists responsible for the Santiago metro terrorist attacks made it clear that they are willing and able to target densely populated venues during daytime hours. Possible future attacks are also of concern, but the Chilean government is determined to thwart any attempts and to prosecute offenders by enacting an anti-terrorism law first used during the Pinochet era. This law allows for anonymous witness testimony by the prosecution and greatly increased sentences. In applying it, the Chilean government likely hopes to dismantle small extremist cells with probable international ties while restoring peace and tranquility to the streets of Santiago. Thanks for the information. It was left out in Brazilian newspapers.last_img read more

U.S. Military Response to Hurricane Matthew Sets the Tone for Successful Planning and Coordination

first_imgBy CDR Ted Kim, LCDR Jeremy Greenwood, CDR Timothy Sommella* November 02, 2016 While Hurricane Matthew, a category 4 storm, was barreling toward Haiti, a small team of U.S. Coast Guard officers was hunkered down in a makeshift command center at a house in Port-au-Prince. Hurricane Matthew became the most destructive storm to hit Haiti in more than 50 years, and the planning and coordination that took place in that makeshift command center set the tone for the U.S. military response. Five Coast Guard cutter crews and more than six Coast Guard aircrews provided the first U.S. military response to Hurricane Matthew in Haiti, which was coordinated and shaped under the leadership of three Coast Guard officers – Cmdr. Ted Kim, Lt. Cmdr. Jeremy Greenwood, and Cmdr. Timothy Sommella. Less than 12 hours after Hurricane Matthew passed, an HC-144 Ocean Sentry airplane crew from Air Station Miami was the first U.S. military asset to arrive on scene. At the request of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), the aircrew carried U.S. Ambassador to Haiti Peter F. Mulrean, provisional Haitian President Jocelerme Privert, and a team of USAID disaster-response experts on an initial overflight assessment of the devastation Hurricane Matthew left behind. The next day, an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew from Air Station Clearwater provided a similar overflight for U.S. Navy Rear Admiral Cedric Pringle, commander of Joint Task Force Matthew (JTF-M). The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hamilton crew also facilitated a logistically challenging transport to get the provisional president of Haiti and the U.S. ambassador on the ground in Jeremie – one of the worst hit cities in Haiti. An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew transferred the two VIPs and the U.S. Coast Guard liaison officer to the cutter before being taken by small boat to a damaged pier in Jeremie. The U.S. military response from U.S. Southern Command grew to more than 20 aircraft, 450 Department of Defense personnel, and two amphibious naval ships carrying 2,600 additional personnel and supplies. JTF-M facilitated the delivery of more than 272 metric tons of food, shelter, and medical supplies and transported 150 relief personnel to cut-off communities in Haiti. The U.S. Coast Guard team proved integral to the formation and support of the operation, liaising with local Haitian government officials, providing critical logistics support, and serving as a conduit between the joint task force and the U.S. Embassy. *U.S. Coast Guard Lieutenant Commander Jeremy Greenwood, Coast Guard Liaison Officer in Haiti; U.S. Coast Guard Commander Ted Kim, Senior Defense Officer/Defense Attaché in Haiti; and U.S. Coast Guard Commander Timothy Sommella, JTF-Matthew-U.S. Coast Guard Liaison Officer.last_img read more

Peruvian Army Promotes Moral Values in Society

first_imgBy Gonzalo Silva Infante/Diálogo August 23, 2018 The Peruvian Army School of Psychological Operations started an unprecedented pilot program to strengthen the troops’ moral values on July 1, 2018. The semester-long program precedes the Army’s national campaign, A Better Citizen. Meant for officers who will graduate in December, the program is carried out in several facilities of the Army in Lima, such as Chorrillos Military School and the Peruvian Army Technical School. Its goal: to adjust the campaign strategy and provide officers with the tools necessary to pass on the message to the troops, all while stimulating their own moral values. The army’s objective is to create a virtuous cycle to help improve Peruvian society. It is estimated that the campaign will reach 20,000 soldiers per year and that each will be able to influence at least 10 people around them. “In the last 40 years, society as a whole has undergone a crisis in values,” Colonel Jorge Reyes Gutiérrez, commandant of the Peruvian Army School of Psychological Operations, told Diálogo. “In our case, we had to deal with terrorism and the economic crisis. Due to a lack of good role models, some people opted for the wrong path. This gave rise to the image of drug traffickers and terrorists.” Author of the campaign From the beginning of his career, Major General Oscar de Jesús Reto Otero, chief of the General Staff of the Peruvian Army, enjoyed chatting with new soldiers to understand what they longed for—a good position, enduring relationships, and helping others. Throughout the years, the spontaneous talks turned into an increasingly concrete vision: Soldiers and their values could positively impact those around them and society. As such, Maj. Gen. Reto started to give informal, educational talks to officers and noncommissioned officers that led to the creation of the moral value campaign, A Better Citizen. Developed by the Peruvian Army School of Psychological Operations, the campaign kicks off in 2019. “In his eagerness to close the loop, [Maj. Gen. Reto] came in February [2018] to talk about his concern,” Col. Reyes said. “He saw that the School of Psychological Operations was the ideal entity to provide scientific support to the work we will carry out and the time it will take—what we can transmit and how we will transmit it.” A repetitive system The School of Psychological Operations opened in 1994 in the district of Santiago de Surco, Lima. The first basic psychological operations program, however, was taught in 1984 at the Army’s premises. With the support of the school’s experts—anthropologists, sociologists, psychologists, and journalists—Maj. Gen. Reto and Col. Reyes identified ways to reinforce good habits in the troops, so these could be passed on to relatives and friends. The model, in its adjustment phase, is based on repetition. According to a 2009 study of University College London, habits are forged in about 66 days. “We’ve come to a rigorous, deliberate model,” Col. Reyes said. “With that corroborated time frame and repetitive system, we looked for free time or psychological spaces we could use within soldiers’ training to get the message across.” The officers found seven daily moments in which to reinforce service members’ habits. They will work on self-esteem orally—through prayers, mottoes, and readings from officers in charge—and through actions when fulfilling their duties. “We will work on self-esteem, which is very low,” Col. Reyes said. “That explains family violence, femicides […] that’s normal in societies that have gone through periods of generalized violence.” Good soldiers, better citizens Officials in charge of the campaign estimate the results will be visible in three years. They stressed that the support of section commanders will be essential to attain the expected results. “They are the ones out there day by day, always with [soldiers], like I used to be when I was second lieutenant,” Maj. Gen. Reto said. As part of the project, officers enrolled at the School of Psychological Operations will take part in a communications course at San Martin de Porres University in Lima. The two-month course, ending in September, will allow officers to develop products around the theme of soldiers as agents of change in society. Each year, the School of Psychological Operations collaborates with the schools of Communication of local universities to train psychological operators in this field. Thanks to the partnership, service members gain the technical tools to be able to transmit information. During its 24 years, the school has come a long way, focusing its efforts on training service members and widening its reach to civil institutions and society. In 2018, the school had yet another first: an unprecedented course for the Peruvian National Police (PNP), which took place April 16th–May 26th. PNP officers who fight against narcoterrorism in the Apurímac, Ene, and Mantaro Rivers Valley (VRAEM, in Spanish), took part in the Special Course for PNP Personnel deployed with the VRAEM Psychological Operations Team. With this training, PNP units will be better prepared to face the challenges of organized crime and protect the people. In the coming months, Maj. Gen. Reto and Col. Reyes will analyze the advances of the pilot program and set the final details. Officers of the School of Psychological Operations started talks with the Peruvian Navy, Air Force, and National Police to replicate the model in their institutions. The campaign, they said, will serve as a catalyst for social change. “My vision is to have good soldiers, better citizens,” Maj. Gen. Reto concluded. “They should not only practice values, but also demand them. If this continues to grow, we will be able to demand that our authorities, who we elect, do what they have offered to do.”last_img read more

Venezuelan Interim President Visits Trump at White House

first_imgBy Voice of America / Edited by Diálogo Staff February 19, 2020 On February 5, Venezuelan Interim President Juan Guaidó met with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House. In a statement announcing Guaidó’s visit, the White House said, “We will continue to work with our partners in the region to confront the illegitimate dictatorship in Venezuela, and will stand alongside the Venezuelan people to ensure a future that is democratic and prosperous.”Guaidó’s visit to Washington followed visits with European and Canadian leaders, part of his campaign against Maduro.The United States and other countries blame Maduro’s socialist policies for the political and economic crisis that threatens regional stability, while recognizing Guaidó as Venezuela’s legitimate interim leader. Guaidó was a guest at Trump’s State of the Union speech in Washington on February 4 and received a standing ovation.National security issueAhead of the meeting between Trump and Guaidó, a senior Trump administration official told reporters Venezuela was a national security priority “in the sense of the destabilizing effect that it has on its neighbors.” The official said the country was responsible for “harboring narcotraffickers” and “narco-terrorists,” adding that Venezuela had become a primary point of narcotics trafficking to Central America, Mexico, and therefore the United States.The official also said the U.S. was using “all of the tools in our box available” to respond.last_img read more

Pro Bono Awards: Voluntary Bar Association Service Award

first_img THE VOLUNTARY BAR ASSOCIATION PRO BONO SERVICE AWARD RECIPIENT Jacksonville Bar AssociationThe Jacksonville Bar Association is a voluntary bar which has served the greater Jacksonville Area (Duval County, Baker County, Clay County, St. Johns County, and Nassau County) since 1897. It has been a long-standing tenet of the Jacksonville Bar Association to not only serve the legal community, but the community in general. As a result, numerous programs and services have been provided throughout the years by members of the Jacksonville Bar including, but not limited to, the Special Olympics, Teen Court, Holiday Project for the Elderly, Holiday in January for children associated with the Department of Children and Families, the Mentor Program, Law School for the Public, and various seminars and forums held for both the legal community and the community at large. In keeping with their tradition of assistance and support, the Jacksonville Bar Association, in conjunction with Jacksonville Area Legal Aid, established a legal in-take clinic at the I.M. Sulzbacher Center for the Homeless in 2001.In essence, since the homeless do not have access to the legal community in a convenient forum, the legal community has gone to the homeless. Specifically, the legal clinic is held on the third Tuesday of each month from 6:45 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. at the I.M. Sulzbacher Center for the benefit of the guests at the center. Each session includes a minimum of four attorneys: two attorneys who specialize in general litigation, a family law attorney, and a public defender. The center provides a staff liaison, Freda Hodges, to assist Alan Pickert, a private attorney with the law firm of Brown, Terrell, Hogan, who coordinates the project for the Jacksonville Bar, and Sarah Jones Fowler, director of Jacksonville Area Legal Aid’s Public Service Projects, who oversees the in-take project for Legal Aid. Both Pickert and Fowler participate each month to provide continuity while the other volunteer attorneys who participate rotate through the program. Additionally, many presentations are also conducted during the course of the year at the center in conjunction with the legal clinic in-take, covering various substantive topics including employment, divorce, housing, and criminal concerns.The I.M. Sulzbacher Center averages 278 homeless guests on a daily basis, and a great number of these guests have legal problems which require an attorney’s attention. Those individuals who sign up to meet with an attorney for the legal in-take are then interviewed by the attorney and their case is either accepted by the attorney or referred to Legal Aid staff or pro bono attorneys for further follow-up. However, numerous times counsel’s advice during the in-take session resolves many of the problems.Since its inaugural debut in February, 2001, over 50 private attorneys have extended their already busy day to interview over 200 guests of the Center with issues ranging from child support to record sealings. Thus far, attorneys have donated almost 300 hours to this program, interviewing guests, administrating the project, and handling the cases pro bono for the guests.The Sulzbacher Center already views the clinic as a tremendous success. As Hodges, a life skills educator for the center, stated: “We are inundated with legal questions throughout the course of any given day by our guests. The questions can range from divorce/child custody issues to landlord/tenant disputes, to workers’ compensation or employment cases. The guests want real answers, and quite frankly we do not have the answers. The guests are always excited and look forward to being able to meet with attorneys to address their needs and to know that there are individuals out in the world who care about them.”One such example of the impact of the program was illustrated at the center’s annual fundraiser, “Transformations,” which was attended by Fowler and the past chairperson of the project from the Jacksonville Bar Association, Marianne Lloyd Aho. During the fund-raiser, the Center honors its partnership with organizations and recognizes the successful transformations of its guests. One such successful transformation concerned a guest who was wrongfully denied unemployment compensation benefits that she desperately needed to support her family until she found future employment. utilizing the program, the grateful guest was justly awarded the benefits that had been wrongly denied her, thereby moving her one step closer to achieving her goal of self-reliance for her and her children.Every month brings an entirely new flow of guests requiring legal assistance. Everyone involved in the project works diligently to refer guests to the clinic with the hope of helping them remove yet one more barrier toward their independence. As one individual stated, legal assistance was the “missing piece of the puzzle” for the Center. Now the picture is complete thanks to the Jacksonville Bar Association. Click here for more Pro Bono Awards Ceremony coverage. Pro Bono Awards: Voluntary Bar Association Service Award April 1, 2002 Regular Newslast_img read more

Stresslines – Thoughts on the holidays, balance & porfessionalism

first_img Stresslines – Thoughts on the holidays, balance & professionalism Stresslines – Thoughts on the holidays, balance & porfessionalism “ Things which matter most must never be at the mercy of things which matter least,” — Goethe “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience. We are spiritual beings having a human experience,” — Teilhard de Chardin“ He that is good with a hammer tends to think everything is a nail,” — Abraham Maslow Robert FioreOnce again, we find ourselves at that time of year, which means many things to many people. Some of us are happy; some not so happy; and some are just indifferent.We all work in a profession that at times is associated with stress, discomfort, and lots of worrying. Indeed, our profession may at times consume us to the point where little else matters.However, let us stop and think for a moment and ask ourselves the following question — Is our job really what matters most in our lives? I feel fairly certain that the vast majority of us would answer that question with a resounding, “No.”If that is true, then the next question must be, “Why do many of us live day to day as if the answer to the first question — is our job really what matters most in our lives — is, “Yes?” I feel fairly certain that the vast majority of us would answer that question with a resounding, “I don’t have any idea.”That said, we may want to take this time of year to reflect on the following: Is now the time to invest the time and energy in finding balance in my life?Let’s not kid ourselves; finding balance in life is perhaps one of the single greatest challenges we as lawyers, judges, and staff face on a daily basis. There is simply no “quick-fix” solution to this dilemma.What matters most in our lives? Is it our parents, children, brothers, and sisters? Is it our friends? Is it our spirituality? Or, is it something else?The point is simply this: many of us who have achieved success in our profession and are well intentioned have not invested the time and energy necessary to begin answering these basic questions. And, without those answers, we have not even begun the process of solving the “balance dilemma.”As the quote above from Goethe teaches, once we figure out the things that matter most in life, the journey begins to ensure that these same things are never at the mercy of the things that matter least.What does finding balance in life have to do with professionalism? Perhaps nothing, depending on our perspective. But, I suggest that “balance” and “professionalism” have a deep-rooted, synergistic relationship. In other words, those of us who have found balance in life — or at the very least have begun searching for it — are more likely to value professionalism that has at its core living by a higher set of principles, and not just the minimum requirements set forth in the ethical rules.There are few times during the year that provide a better opportunity to reflect on life than during the holidays. Maybe now is the time to start the journey. Robert J. Fiore of Miami serves as the president of the Dade County Bar Association and chair of The Florida Bar’s Standing Committee on Professionalism. This column is published under the sponsorship of the Quality of Life and Career Committee. The committee’s Web site is at www.fla-lap.org/qlsm.center_img January 1, 2005 Regular Newslast_img read more

In Memoriam

first_img In Memoriam Joseph Henry Chambers, St. Petersburg Admitted 1964; Died January 6, 2005 Robert Stephen Geiger, Boca Raton Admitted 1975; Died February 6, 2004 Julius Benjamin Griffin, Ocoee Admitted 1955; Died January 25, 2003 James H. Hartl, San Francisco, CA Admitted 1973; Died August 15, 2000 William O.E. Henry, Maitland Admitted 1952; Died March 11, 2005 Michael Francis Hofer, Indianapolis, IN Admitted 1980; Died March 14, 2004 J. Francis Hunt, Humble, TX Admitted 1973; Died June 11, 2000 Harry L. Irvine, Jr., Coral Springs Admitted 1987; Died August 23, 2004 Reginald S. Johnson, Royal Oak, MI Admitted 1972; Died March 4, 2003 Clifton M. Kelly, Lakeland Admitted 1947; Died April 12, 2005 Kenneth Gordon King, Naples Admitted 1992; Died April 18, 2005 O. Gwen Lamar King, Pensacola Admitted 1969; Died December 22, 2004 Edwin W. Lammi, Boca Raton Admitted 1954; Died February 19, 2005 John Ryle Lawson, Jr., Tampa Admitted 1955; Died January 31, 2005 Richard T. Leavengood, St. Petersburg Admitted 1979; Died March 8, 2005 Stuart Alan Levine, Winter Park Admitted 1981; Died August 20, 2004 Madison McNeil Mosley, Jr., St. Petersburg Admitted 1993; Died March 29, 2005 John Gerard O’Brien, Pensacola Admitted 1967; Died April 1, 2005 Quillian S. Yancey, Lakeland Admitted 1959; Died January 3, 2005 Glen C. Rafkin, Ft. Lauderdale Admitted 1979; Died January 25, 2005 Dale E. Rice, Crestview Admitted 1962; Died March 21, 2005 Lori R. Rosen, Minnetonka, MN Admitted 1989; Died February 15, 2005 Joel Steven Rossignolo, Orlando Admitted 1971; Died March 7, 2005 David Herrick Runyan, Madeira Beach Admitted 1977; Died April 6, 2005 June 15, 2005 In Memoriam In Memoriamlast_img read more

D’Alemberte to chair AJS

first_img September 1, 2005 Regular News D’Alemberte to chair AJS Sandy D’Alemberte was recently elected to serve as chair of the board for the American Judicature Society. D’Alemberte, president emeritus of Florida State University, previously served as the AJS president from 1982 to 1984 and received its highest honor, the Justice Award in 1996. “Sandy’s passion for an accessible, high-quality, and fair justice system; understanding of issues facing our courts; and leadership qualities are well known,” said Allan Sobel, AJS president. Two other Floridians were also elected to the AJS Board of Directors. Former U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno returned to the board and Neal Sonnett, a Miami criminal law attorney, was re-elected to the board. As chair, D’Alemberte plans to work to implement the new governance system, which places the executive director into the office of president. He will also continue to work on a new initiative, which will draw lessons from the wrongful convictions now firmly established by DNA testing. This work is to be further developed in discussions with the National Academy of Sciences and foundations interested in supporting improvements in the truth-finding function of the justice system. D’Alemberte to chair AJSlast_img read more

Suffolk Police Save Heroin Overdose Victim, Cops Say

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A Fort Salonga man who overdosed on heroin early Saturday morning was saved by four Suffolk County police officers using a prescription drug that reverses opiate overdoses, police said.The four officers—Joseph Mango, Barbara Hernandez, Shane Wild and Michael Guido—all responded to a call of an unresponsive man at 6:04 a.m., police said. The 20-year-old man was found passed out in his bedroom from an apparent heroin overdose, police said. Officer Mango administered the prescription drug, Narcan, on the victim, who was then taken to Huntington Hospital.The unidentified man regained consciousness in the ambulance on the way to the hospital, police said.The prescription drug is being used in all Suffolk County police precincts as part of a New York State Department of Health pilot program.last_img read more

Freeport Middle School Principal Accused of Sex with Teen

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York John Omard (Nassau County Police Department)The principal of Freeport’s J.W. Dodd Middle School was accused Wednesday of having sex with a teenage boy who was once enrolled at the school.Nassau County police arrested John O’Mard at his Freeport home and charged him with four counts of third-degree criminal sexual act. Bail was set at $10,000 bond and $5,000 cash at his arraignment.Investigators said the principal engaged in “sexual acts” with the then-16-year-old victim after they met through Grindr, a smartphone dating application for men. The two used the app to chat and discuss where they would meet, Det. Sgt. Carlo Maltempi of the Special Victims Squad, said at a press conference.O’Mard picked up the teenager at the meeting spot and then allegedly drove him to his Freeport house where the sexual act occurred, police said.There was “no force,” Maltempi said, adding that “there were other factors” that led to the sexual encounter. He didn’t elaborate.Though the alleged incident occurred in September 2012, it wasn’t until Friday that police began their investigation. One of the teenager’s friends heard of the encounter and alerted Freeport school officials last week, Maltempi said.Investigators said O’Mard served as the middle school’s principal for approximately 10 years and an educator for 15. The victim, now 17, was enrolled in the school while O’Mard was principal but it wasn’t until “shortly after they met that he realized that it was his ex-principal,” Maltempi said.Freeport School District Superintendent Dr. Kishore Kunchman released a statement on the district’s website notifying parents that school officials are aware of the investigation. Without identifying Omard by name, Kunchman said the “individual has been administratively reassigned pending the outcome of the investigation currently being conducted by law enforcement authorities.”“The district will continue to cooperate with law enforcement during their investigation,” Kunchman added. “As this is a personnel matter, the district is legally prohibited from discussing any specifics regarding this individual and the police investigation.”Former Assistant Principal Robert Micucci, who had been with the district for 36 years before retiring in 2011, will take over in the interim, the district said.O’Mard’s attorney couldn’t be reached for comment. He is due back in court March 25.Nassau police asked that anyone who feels they may have been a victim call Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-TIPS.last_img read more

Mastic Man DWI in Crash That Killed Grandfather, Cops Say

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A man was arrested for drunken driving in a crash that killed his grandfather, who was a passenger in the suspect’s truck in East Patchogue on Monday evening, Suffolk County police said.Gary Hendricks, 45, of Mastic, was driving a Chevrolet Suburban westbound on Sunrise Highway when he rear-ended a GMC pickup truck and veered up an embankment, causing the truck to roll over near the corner of Route 112 at 5:15 p.m., police said.Hendricks’ grandfather, 77-year-old Isaac Beal, was ejected from the backseat of the Suburban. He pronounced dead at the scene.The other backseat passenger, 62-year-old Donald Fowler of West Babylon, was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital where he is listed in critical condition.Hendricks and frontseat passenger, 47-year-old Tina Downes of Medford, were taken to Brookhaven Memorial Hospital Medical Center in East Patchogue for treatment of non-life-threatening injuries.The other driver, 21-year-old Jonnathan Penaranda of Patchogue, and his passenger were not injured.Hendricks was charged with driving while intoxicated and unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. He will be arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip.Vehicular Crime Unit detectives are continuing the investigation and ask anyone with information about this crash to call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.last_img read more

Do This: Long Island Events November 20-26

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Holiday Lights SpectacularIt’s back! After being nixed seven years ago, this 2.5-mile drive-thru seaside holiday tradition triumphantly returns with more than 150 lighted-displays, many of which are animated, synced to holiday music. It all culminates in a holiday village, where kids can have pictures taken with Santa Clause, visitors can make s’mores and revelers can hear carolers sing on select nights. Wednesday night is pet night for discounts and a chance to have a photo of Fido seated on Santa’s lap. There is also a Twofer Tuesday special—two trips for the price of one. Jones Beach State Park, West End, Ocean Pkwy. seetheholidaylights.com $20 per car weekdays, $25 weekends. Nov. 20-Jan. 4. dusk-10 p.m. Mon.-Thurs., open til 11 p.m. Fri.-Sun.David Amram’s 84th Birthday Concert: Remembering Pete Seeger Billed as “the greatest folk concert Long Island has seen in decades,” this show is not only a birthday bash for a world-renowned artist and a musical celebration of perhaps one of the world’s most influential folk artists, it’s also a benefit for the nonprofit Gold Coast Arts Center, an organization dedicated to supporting and promoting the arts through education, exhibition, performance and outreach—something that David Amram has done throughout his own long career. Topping the bill is the octogenarian birthday boy himself, David Amram, and his quintet, and Amram’s close compatriots, including Peter Yarrow (of Peter, Paul and Mary fame), Tom Chapin, Holly Near, Guy Davis, Garland Jeffreys, Kim & Reggie Harris, Joel Rafael, The Amigos, The Chapin Sisters, Bethany & Rufus and the Connecticut State Troubadour Kristen Graves. The Hillwood Recital Hall At Tilles Center, LIU Post, 720 Northern Blvd., Brookville. tillescenter.org $55. 7 p.m. Nov. 20.Ace FrehleyHere’s an interesting tidbit for Ace Frehley fans: on his newest album, Space Invaders,  his fiance, Rachael Gordon, wrote the lyrics to two songs: “Change” and “Immortal Pleasures.” The Kiss guitarist is sure to  bust out both songs when this Rock and Roll Hall of Famer storms into town to promote the album. Prepare to “rock and roll all night” as one of the most influential rock guitarists of all time brings his brand of far-out music to our little corner of the planet. With opening act Charm City Devils. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $25-$59.50. 8 p.m. Nov. 20.Deck the Halls: Original Art for Holiday Giving An opening reception for an exhibit that features the work of about two dozen local artists and artisans with all the charm of the holiday season. As in previous years, the event will come alive with a unique array of handcrafted jewelry, giftware and clothing by local and nationally recognized artisans, as well as a selection of sustainable and fair-trade items. Exhibit runs through Dec. 23. Gallery North, 90 North Country Rd., Setauket-East Setauket. gallerynorth.org Free. 5 p.m. Nov. 21.Freddie Hudson, Victoria M. Howard, Billy Haughton This trifecta of authors and horse racing experts will discuss and sign copies of a new book they co-wrote, Roosevelt Raceway: Where It All Began, which recounts the rise and fall of the then-world capital of harness racing. A must read for fans of Long Island history—or anyone who wonders why there are references to a racetrack on Corporate Drive in Westbury. Book Revue, 313 New York Ave., Huntington. Bookrevue.com Price of book. 7 p.m. Nov. 21.Dave AttellFrom Rodney Dangerfield to Jerry Seinfeld, LI is home to a laundry list of comics who made it into the big leagues. Add to that list this dark lord of the comedic arts, the not-so-family friendly former host of Insomniac With Dave Attell. When he’s not working the circuit, the always risqué joke slinger can be found on his late night stand-up show, Comedy Underground, on Comedy Central. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $45-$65. 7:30 p.m. Nov. 21.Pat Metheny Unity Group Jazz guitarist Pat Metheny, saxophonist Chris Potter, bass clarinetist Ben Williams and madman drummer Antonio Sánchez continue their mind-blowing ascension to virtuosic nirvana. Expect to be absolutely floored, no matter what your musical tastes. Not to miss! The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $45-$95. 8 p.m. Nov. 21.Sultans of StringSultans of StringThis jazzy folk/worldbeat trio known for poly-rhythms and revved up riffs melds fiery violin dances with kinetic guitar while a funky bass lays down unstoppable grooves. Acoustic strings meet electronic wizardry to create layers and depth of sound. They’ll be celebrating the release of their new album, Symphony! Our Times Coffeehouse, 38 Old Country Rd, Garden City. ourtimescoffeehouse.org $15, $6 for kids under 12. 8 p.m. Nov. 21.Mitch Ryder and the Detroit WheelsGood golly, Miss Molly, what a high-octane, super-charged pop music career has Mitch Ryder had with The Detroit Wheels. Once William S. Levise, Jr. adopted his stage name he truly took off. He and his band were the first to hit the AM airwaves with their distinctive hard-hitting sound that combined the best of Motown and the Motor City in one explosive rock ’n’ roll ride. Take a listen to “Devil With a Blue Dress On” or “Sock It To Me, Baby!” and you’ll know where he’s coming from. With Mitch Ryder in the driver’s seat, these Wheels have covered a lot of mileage over the years—and there’s many more miles still to come. Suffolk Theater, 118 Main St., Riverhead. Suffolktheater.com $49. 8 p.m. Nov. 21.Bill Nye the Science GuyUniverses will collide for this delightfully nerdy event that comes in the wake of Nye’s heated Creationist debate and his pop culture debut on Dancing With The Stars. Previously only appearing at academic institutions, he’s taking the show on the road for those who want to relive their childhood or hear his hotly debated theories in person. This performance is guaranteed to inform, inspire and stir up some nostalgia! NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $40-$85. 8 p.m. Nov. 21.Straight to Hell Giving homage to the late, great “punk rock warlord” Joe Strummer is this tribute to The Clash, the English punk rockers dubbed by music critics to be “The Only Band That Matters” (several Press staffers would have to agree). Opening the show will be Rockaway Bitch, an all-girl tribute to The Ramones (!!), Basket Case, a Green Day cover band and local hellraisers Black Mary. Do not miss this gig! 89 North Music Venue, 89 North Ocean Ave., Patchogue. 89northmusic.com $10. 7:30 p.m. Nov. 22.Mario Cantone He’s a funny guy, this Mario Cantone—handsome and talented, too. Cantone, a celebrated stage actor and comedian, gained well-deserved critical acclaim with his Tony-nominated one-man show, “Laugh Whore,” which also became a Showtime special. He previously starred in the Tony-winning production of Stephen Sondheim’s “Assassins” and in Terrence McNally’s dramatic comedy, “Love! Valor! Compassion!” Of course, some fans might have a soft spot for his role on HBO’s Sex and the City as Anthony, Charlotte’s wedding-planner-with-attitude. Who else could do a musical parody of both Judy Garland and Jim Morrison? Who else would dare! The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $32.50-$60. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Roger Street FriedmanThis New York-based musician’s genre-bending sound is a fusion of Americana, folk, rock, country and R&B reminiscent of artists like Van Morrison, Paul Simon and Joni Mitchell. He recently released his debut full-length album, The Waiting Sky. The Landmark Theatre, 232 Main St., Port Washington. landmarkonmainstreet.org $47. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Johnette NapolitanoThis uncompromisingly talented singer-songwriter from Hollywood is perhaps best known as the lead vocalist and bassist for the alternative rock band Concrete Blonde, of “Joey” fame. Napolitano’s also created a body of work as a solo artist, a sculptor and a poet. She’s composed soundtracks for movies and TV shows, as well as collaborated with Nine Inch Nails, Danny Lohner, John Trudel and Paul Westerberg, to name a few. Not too long ago she even sang lead with The Heads, a revamped Talking Heads project that went headless without founder David Byrne. Now, she’s on the road with “Rough Mix,” her memoir-cum-musical recollection of three decades spent doing what she does best. Boulton Cener for the Performing Arts, 37 West Main St., Bay Shore. Boultoncenter.org $30-$35. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Hot Autumn NightsThis hot lineup of 1960s throwbacks includes Tommy James & The Shondells, who topped music charts with “Hanky Panky,” “I Think We’re Alone Now” and “Mony, Mony,” among others. Also rocking out will be English pop sensations Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone, who will play their hits, “Mrs. Brown You’ve Got A Lovely Daughter” and “I’m Henry VIII, I Am.” Rounding out the lineup are The Grass Roots, best known for hits such as “Midnight Confessions” and The Buckinghams, who will perform “Kind of a Drag” and other hits. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $30-$75. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Chuck Loeb, Jeff Lorber and Everette HarpThe sheer power, diversity and virtuosity, really, of this Smooth Jazz super group is encapsulated in the simple-yet-telling title of their latest, Jazz Funk Soul (also the name of their recent tour). Expect to be wowed, mesmerized, converted. Not to be missed. Molloy College, The Madison Theater, 1000 Hempstead Ave., Rockville Centre. molloy.edu $50-$95. 8 p.m. Nov. 22. Steve Miller BandTake our word for it: You know every single lyric to every single Steve Miller Band song ever, which makes seeing them at a live show such a fun experience. Definitely “Fly Like an Eagle” down to see him this weekend because “Time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future” and you might miss your chance to see the guy some call the Gangster of Love (but whom others simply refer to as “Maurice.”) One thing’s for sure: Before they take your money and run, you will have the time of your life. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $55-$155. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Trio SolistiTrio SolistiMarking its 10th year as ensemble-in-residence at Adelphi University, this group has forged its reputation as “the most exciting piano trio in America,” according to The New Yorker, with a performance style that combines exceptional virtuosity and penetrating musical insight. The acclaimed ensemble possesses a broad repertoire that encompasses most of the standard trio selections, as well as many new works by contemporary composers. Adelphi University, Performing Arts Center, Concert Hall, 1 South Ave., Garden City. aupac.adelphi.edu $30-$35. 8 p.m. Nov. 22.Carol MarajNicki Minaj’s mother will sing songs from her soon-to-be-released gospel album at a Thanksgiving outreach event hosted by the nonprofit Bridges Outreach and Sisters Divinely Connected Inc. The group aims to reach out to the surrounding communities and provide encouragement, assistance, food and inspiration for Thanksgiving. Dinner is being served and there will Thanksgiving giveaways. VFW Hall, 19 Colonial Springs Rd., Wheatley Heights. Free. 1:30 p.m. Nov. 23.Lights, Sound MovementAn opening reception with be held with this exhibit showcasing untraditional elements in contemporary art from works that are concerned entirely with motion and unpredictability to work that brings ancient myth into contemporary life. Artists whose work will be featured include: Annalisa Iadicicco, who emphasizes subjects of a politically charged nature; Karen Kettering Dimit and Kenny Greenberg, who both use neon to draw in the eye; and sculptors Jack Rohe Howard-Potter and Mara Sfara. Gold Coast Arts Center, 113 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck. goldcoastarts.org 4 p.m. Nov. 23 Exhibit runs through Jan. 15.Songbirds: Women In FolkNational award-winning singer-songwriter and Huntingtonian Patricia Shih brings a multi-media tribute to five extraordinary female musicians for a lively and spirited night of music co-presented by Folk Music Society of Huntington. In this show Patricia highlights five women—Ronnie Gilbert of The Weavers, Joan Baez, Mary Travers of Peter, Paul and Mary, Judy Collins and Joni Mitchell—who have influenced generations of contemporary artists. Patricia sings full versions of these artists’ most beloved songs live, along with her husband/accompanist Stephen Fricker. After the concert there will be a CD release party for Patricia’s newest album, Gold Covered. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. cinemaartscentre.org $15 members, $20 public. 6 p.m. Nov. 23. Davi Sings SinatraThere’s a reason Robert Davi pulls out all the stops in his heart-felt tribute to Ol’ Blue Eyes. The Chairman of the Board was on hand when the young Davi made his screen debut with his boyhood idol in the 1977 TV movie Contract on Cherry Street. While they were filming at a New York social club at 2 a.m. Sinatra invited Davi to join him for a drink. When the young actor said he didn’t imbibe, Sinatra told him, “You don’t drink, you’re fired!” Then Davi said, “I’ll have what you’re having!” And he sat at the bar and Sinatra poured him some Jack Daniel’s. “It was my first one—and I’ve been drinking it ever since!” says Davi, who grew up in Dix Hills and went to Hofstra. He’s played cops, thugs, drug lords and tough guys in roles that have taken him from The Goonies to Die Hard. But on his debut album, Davi Sings Sinatra: On the Road to Romance, he shows his softer side. And that’s what he’ll present on tour. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $45-$75. 8 p.m. Nov. 23.Fight Club With David Fincher’s Gone Girl dominating American movie theaters, CAC staffer Ryan Perry presents a BIG SCREEN celebration of the 15th Anniversary of Fincher’s iconic turn-of-the-millennium masterpiece about consumerism and masculinity run amok, starring Brad Pitt and Edward Norton. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. cinemaartscentre.org $10 members, $15 public. 7:30 p.m. Nov. 25. Sleeping with Sirens & Pierce the Veil Wounded and tattooed emo at its gushiest and perhaps most hypnotizing. With special guests: This Wild Life & Beartooth. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $32.50-$65. 8 p.m. Nov. 24, 25.The Brian Setzer OrchestraThe former Stray Cats front man and hometown rockabilly hero returns to Long Island with his 18-piece orchestra on their Christmas Rocks Extravaganza! tour. The concert will include Setzer’s legendary guitar magic on hits such as “Rock This Town,” “Stray Cat Strut” and much more, as well as his re-imagined and acclaimed Holiday classics. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $50-$85. 8 p.m. Nov. 25.Halestorm The Grammy-winning rockers—metal goddess Lizzy Hale, along with drummer/brother Arejay, shredder Joe Hottinger and madman bassist Josh Smith—unleash unbridled sonic ferocity in a gig bound to cause legions of audience members to shout, raise their fists into the air, and head-bang in almost synchronized unison. With New Medicine. The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $22.50-$25. 8:30 p.m. Nov. 25.Amy Schumer This Rockville Centre native is the hilarious actress/comedian of the acclaimed Comedy Central show Inside Amy Schumer. Fans will recall seeing her in one of her guest starring roles on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm and Girls and in the major motion picture Seeking a Friend for the End of the World with Steve Carrell and Keira Knightley. But onstage, alone with a microphone, is where Schumer shines. With her colorful, often-raunchy commentary, Schumer promises side-splitting humor about life, love and sex that you won’t soon forget. The Press promises you this: she’s waaaaaay funnier then her first cousin once removed, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY). Seriously. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $50-$85. 8 p.m. Nov. 26.The Warden and FAME Blending hip-hop, reggae and rock is this Bay Shore-based quintet that have been churning out musical good vibes for the past four years with upbeat., groovy jams such as “Summertime,” “Get My Roll On” and “The Weekends Here.” Warming up the crowd will be Dune Local, Aqua Cherry, Jungle Gypsy and The Offshore Regulars. Revolution Bar and Music Hall, 140 Merrick Rd., Amityville. Revolutionli.com $12. 8 p.m. Nov. 26.—Compiled by Spencer Rumsey, Jamie Franchi, Timothy Bolger and Zack Tiranalast_img read more

Eric Paslay Plays ‘Heroic’ Show on Long Island

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Country music star Eric Paslay honored the nation’s veterans Saturday during a special “Salute to Heroes” concert at the Pennysaver Amphitheater in Farmingville.Before the Texas native took the stage, Chris Lane, Brothers Osborne and Parmalee opened up the show to give the audience a real down-home feeling. Paslay began his set with his hit single, “Song About A Girl.” Throughout the night, he played fan favorites such as “She Don’t Love You,” “Never Really Wanted,” and his new single, “High Class.”He paid the audience special attention.“I moved up to Nashville, started writing songs and pursuing this crazy dream,” Paslay said before he launched into “Even If It Breaks Your Heart.”“Thank y’all for letting us live our dreams every night up here,” he continued earnestly. “And I hope every morning you wake up and you have something to reach for, you know. Maybe you’ve got your dream and she’s lying there with you. But it’s good to have a dream that’s worth reaching for, and thank you for letting us have our music and the road to do that on. I hope you never forget how to dream. This is for all the dreamers!”Aside from creating his own hits, Paslay has also collaborated on songs with other country stars, including Jake Owen’s “Barefoot Blue Jean Night,” Love and Theft’s “Angel Eyes” plus others for Lady Antebellum and the Eli Young Band.Paslay also thanked those fans who turned out to see Rascal Flatts at the same venue the previous week despite the pouring rain. Then he sang an acoustic version of a tune that he co-wrote with Rascal Flatts called “Rewind.” Everyone in the audience sang along.The country crooner dutifully left the crowd wanting more–perhaps hoping he’d rewind the concert so they could enjoy it all from the beginning–but he concluded with his most well-known song: his breakout hit, “Friday Night.”Paslay will be playing a few more venues in New England before he heads back down south, with tour dates lasting through December.For those on hand in Suffolk, it was a Saturday night to savor one of country’s best, Eric Paslay.last_img read more

Long Island Valentine’s Day Events 2018

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Long Island Got no plans for Valentine’s Day? Good news: the romantic folks from these Long Island venues have got you covered.Sinatra Love SongsTell your special someone you love them “in other words” by bringing them to this romantic evening of dancing, dinner, and fine wine, all set to the tunes of Frank Sinatra’s best love songs performed by a live orchestra. The Suffolk Theater, 118 E. Main St., Riverhead. 631-727-4343. suffolktheater.com $36-$45. 8 p.m. Feb. 9.Valentine’s Night CabaretCelebrate with your beloved at this romantic Valentine’s show featuring two of Broadway’s most famed performers, Rebecca Luker and Howard Mcgillin, as they whisk you away for an evening of cocktails, dinner, cabaret, and an exclusive dessert with the artists. Hempstead House, 127 Middle Neck Rd., Sands Point. 516-304-5076. sandspointpreserveconservancy.org $110-$250. VIP 6-10 p.m. General 7-10 p.m. Feb. 10.Barry White Valentine TributePlaying hits such as “Can’t Get Enough of Your Love” and “Never Gonna Give You Up,” Jourdan Carroll will have the whole crowd jiving across the open dance floor! The Suffolk Theater, 118 E. Main St, Riverhead. 631-727-4343. suffolktheater.com $45. 8 p.m. Feb. 10.Couples MassageEnjoy the company of your loved one as you treat yourselves to a massage, relaxing side by side in a special couple’s room. Hand and Stone, multiple locations. handandstone.com Prices vary.ChocoVino: A Valentine Wine & Chocolate pairing dinnerIndulge your tastebuds in an extravagant five-course meal as you sip on fine wines and bite into an assortment of decadent chocolates, all while enjoying a candle lit dinner with your special someone! Long Island Aquarium and Exhibition Center, 431 East Main St., Riverhead. longislandaquarium.com $195 per couple 8 p.m. Feb. 14.Mortified: Doomed Valentine’s Day ShowMortified is a live storytelling extravaganza—a show-and-tell, if you will, of people’s most embarrassing, awkward, and often seminal moments. At this Mortified event, celebrate and commiserate February 14th with stories of past V-Days gone wrong. The event is all ages at Wanderlust, but you can still expect beer, wine, and inappropriate tales all around. YMCA Boulton Center for the Performing Arts, 37 W. Main St., Bay Shore. boultoncenter.org $15-$20. 8 p.m. Feb. 16.Be Mine Valentine’s Day Beer and Wine Couples Bus TourDid he say “Be mine?” or “Beer wine?” Have both and bring your love along for a boozy adventure which will be making stops at Baiting Hollow Farm Vineyard and Jamesport Farm Brewery. A selection of gourmet chocolates and cheeses will be included along with a couples photograph to commemorate your special day! Four different pick up locations libeerbus.com $160 per couple 11:30 a.m., 11:45 a.m., 12 p.m. and 12:15 p.m. Feb. 18.last_img read more

U.S. Open a Hole in One for Long Island

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York This month, the coveted and historic 2018 U.S. Open Golf Championship makes its retur tothe prestigious Shinnecock Hills Golf Club in Southampton. For the fifth time, June 11 to 17, the U.S. Golf Association (USGA) will kick off this annual rite of passage. Long Island has a rich history of hosting major golf events, and this year we will continue that tradition.This game is fortuitous for our county. It develops the region, cultivates tourism, delivers employment, and ultimately allows residents and audience to meet some of the most prestigious and big-name golfers in the world, including Tiger Woods.World-class events such as this offer considerable job opportunities. This year, there will be more than 2,000 temporary food service and hospitality jobs, event security and staff positions, parking attendants and shuttle/bus depot attendants jobs, and many more positions.Our partnership with companies such as Ridgewells/Purple Tie, MTK Resources, Country Club Services, and Andy Frain Services is a testament to our Suffolk County Department of Labor and local businesses helping our residents secure gainful employment.Amazingly, event security leader Andy Frain Services will also help unlicensed applicants become licensed for free. This means that even after the U.S. Open, individuals that are now licensed can go on to find other permanent positions.There is also a regional economic benefit as well. The golf championship is anticipated to generate between up to $130 million, and there is no doubt that it will attract extensive tourism. With millions of people in more than 150 countries tuning in to watch the championship, Suffolk will experience tremendous economicdevelopment through the region.Approximately 8,000 hotel rooms are expected to be booked with the anticipation of an expected attendance of more than 200,000 people, including players, fans, volunteers, vendors and media. There are also additional options for hotels. Suffolk will make available our county parks for those seeking to leisure and stay in our picturesque campgrounds.With more than 46,000 acres of parkland, 200 historical sites and 100 public beaches within its boundaries, Suffolk is a natural playground, and camping is an immersive alternative to lodging during the U.S. Open. Those looking for a convenient, low-priced  substitute for hotels can easily visit, reserve, and enjoy a scenic stay at Cedar Point, Sears Bellows, or Indian Island county campgrounds.We look forward to working together to make this, and many other future USGA events, a resounding success for both our region and the sport of golf. We are truly excited about this opportunity to allow the world to experience the hidden gems our residents enjoy daily.Steve Bellone is the Suffolk County Executive.last_img read more

The CFPB’s new cure: Final revisions to certain mortgage rules

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Shelbey NeilJust as the world of popular medicine seems to evolve (and even contradict itself), so too is the world of regulatory compliance in a constant state of flux. Nowhere is that more evident than with mortgage rules, and the CFPB has released a new mechanism for curing point and fees errors (this statement has not been evaluated by the FDA).OverviewThe CFPB has made some specific amendments to the mortgage rules under Regulation Z. Of interest to financial institutions are the final rule changes that provide a cure mechanism for overages to the points and fees limit for qualified mortgages, with the exception of FHA-insured mortgage loans. HUD is not adopting the changes to the points and fees limits for FHA-insured mortgages, but is providing guidance on curing errors to points and fees made prior to insurance endorsement.Curing Errors Related to the Limits on Points and Fees for Qualified MortgagesSection 1026.43(e)(3) of Regulation Z limits the up-front points and fees for qualified mortgages to no more than 3% of the total loan amount, with higher thresholds for various categories of loans below $100,000. Points and fees are defined as the fees and charges that are known at or before consummation.In some cases, unintended overages may occur that are not discovered until after consummation. Now Regulation Z allows lenders (or an assignee) to cure these overages so that the loan does not lose its status as a qualified mortgage and the lender is not subject to a regulatory violation and/or potential liability. continue reading »last_img read more

Credit unions thwart Wisconsin payday loan provision

first_imgby: David MorrisonCredit unions and banks in Wisconsin together urged Governor Scott Walker to veto a part of the state’s budget that could have, they said, sharply increased the numbers of services the state’s payday lenders could provide.Walker, who announced a bid to win the Republican Party’s presidential nomination this morning, signed the budget bill yesterday and vetoed the provision. continue reading » ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Two-way transparency: The gold standard for high performance

first_img 90SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Joel Trammell Joel Trammell is a successful CEO and entrepreneur with a 20-year career in IT-related software companies. He is currently CEO of Khorus, which provides a business management system for CEOs … Web: www.khorus.com Details Slowly but surely, US business leaders are realizing that transparency within their companies is no longer an option. Enterprise technology, the expectations of Millennials, and the need for faster, better collaboration have pushed the concept of institutional openness into the mainstream. Our best CEOs are now embracing it as a significant competitive advantage.These leaders know that transparency isn’t just flashing a revenue slide at staff meetings, or about seeming trendy. They know it’s about a culture change, intended to engage the team and equip them with the information they need to do their best work.The two sides of transparencyHowever, the common understanding of organizational transparency—that the CEO and top leadership team will hand down relevant information to employees—leaves out a critical piece of the equation.For transparency to work at full capacity, relevant information has to flow both ways, from the CEO and to the CEO. When this happens, a feedback loop emerges:traditional top-down transparency helps employees see into the core of the business, even asbottom-up transparency gives the CEO a clear view of day-to-day operations and the insight of his team.These two brands of transparency reinforce and supplement each other. By keeping both sides in touch with the reality of the other, they result in a more cohesive, aligned company.It’s not unlike this recent study from Harvard Business School, which tested food quality in a restaurant based on whether the cooks and patrons could see each other. When transparency was one-way, food-quality ratings increased 10 percent. But when transparency was two-way—when customers and cooks could both see each other—quality ratings went up 17.3 percent and service was 13.2 percent faster.Who’s responsible for setting up two-way transparency in your credit union? Ultimately, it’s the chief executive. As I wrote in The CEO Tightrope, the best CEOs “set up a communication infrastructure that promotes transparent information flow both from the CEO and to the CEO, and this transparency helps keep the company on course toward its vision.”Let’s look at four modes CEOs may operate in depending on how well they carry out this responsibility.The walled-off CEO: No transparency either way This CEO guards information about finances, strategy, and key decisions like they’re the queen’s jewels, even as he fails to see into the daily operations of his team. There’s a brick wall between the inner sanctum of the CEO and the on-the-ground operations of his team.This lack of transparency either way cuts a deep divide in the organization. There’s chaos in the rank-and-file, and the CEO tries to lead without the critical insights his people hold.The giver CEO: Top-down transparency aloneThis CEO understands that the modern workforce wants and needs transparency, so she regularly hands out information to the team: company strategy and goals, financial performance, key decisions, etc.What she’s not so good at is ensuring that she has transparency into how things are proceeding on the ground. She’s basically set up a one-way mirror: the company can analyze her and all her plans and thought processes, but when she looks down into the organization, she sees her own reflection. She’s achieved half-transparency, but she still fits the old cliché about CEOs: she’s the last to know when something goes wrong. Good intentions aside, she won’t be an effective leader. The surveillance CEO: Bottom-up transparency aloneThis CEO demands transparency from his people, but he’s not so good at giving it them. He may set up complex data-collection systems, and want to know what’s on everyone’s plate at all times. And so help him God if he’s not the first to know when a project goes off the rails.Despite his goal of omniscience, this CEO leaves his team in the dark, reverting to an outmoded understanding of employees as mere ditch-diggers. His team is likely disengaged by lack of clarity on the state or direction of the company, and their efforts are probably diffuse and not well aligned with the CEO’s strategy.The truly transparent CEO: Two-way transparencyThis CEO strikes the right balance. She’s set up systems for sharing the company’s strategy, goals, and performance. She doesn’t just share data; she gives her informed take on what the company is doing right and where it needs to improve. She’s publicizes big wins internally, but is honest when the company faces a material challenge.At the same time, she’s set up systems that allow her people and teams to share information with her. She regularly gathers their feedback on how they think things are going—and what they expect for the future. She’s trained her employees to not just share data; they give her their honest, informed take on what’s going well and where potential problems are developing.Knowledge is power. Nowhere is that more true than in a company operating in a competitive, dynamic environment (and how many aren’t?). The most successful CEOs treat transparency like more than just another buzzword; they proactively set up processes that help everyone share honest information about the business.I founded Khorus precisely to help leaders scale this two-way transparency across the business. Get in touch today to learn how credit unions across the country are using enterprise software to bring more transparency, openness, and achievement to their organizations.last_img read more

Holiday celebrations continue…so do scams

first_img 3SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr If the last few years have taught consumers anything, they’ve probably been schooled that scams can lurk at every turn and the security of their data can sometimes be breached–at times quite spectacularly with massive thefts of information.Although these sorts of vulnerabilities exist all the time, the holidays represent a time of increased opportunity for criminals for a number of reasons: Among them, increased shopping, decreased attention to detail, as well as a feeling of generosity and community making some feel less guarded.As holiday joviality…and shopping… continue credit unions can help their members be aware of an extensive set of resources and information for the latest scams now available via a newly launched Fraud Prevention Center from the National Credit Union Administration.The center contains information on how to recognize common scans, protect finances and take action if one becomes a victim of fraud (News Now Dec. 15). continue reading »last_img read more

CFO Focus: Best practices in benefits pre-funding

first_img 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr More than 10 years ago, National Credit Union Administration Rule 701.19 went into effect. It gave federally chartered credit unions the ability to purchase investments that would otherwise be impermissible under parts 703 and 704 of NCUA’s rules and regulations, as long as these investments directly relate to the credit unions’ obligation or future obligation to support employee benefit plans, including such things as health insurance and 401(k) plans.Over the years, there hasn’t been much discussion about the regulatory expectations, which include board oversight and approval of a credit union’s associated investment policy used to fund the pre-funding plan. This is due in large part to the Great Recession, which occurred shortly after 701.19’s implementation. At the time, the financial crisis dampened credit unions’ interest in new types of investments.Now, with the improving economic environment and the increasing need to retain and attract top talent, credit union interest in investments with higher yields to help improve employee benefits has grown. So has regulator interest. Examiner directives related to lack of due diligence and/or board and management oversight on pre-funding arrangements are now much more prevalent.In the current environment, we suggest credit unions take three steps: continue reading »last_img read more

13 things to accomplish with your money before 40

first_img 56SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Everyone’s allowed a few life mulligans, but by the time you’ve hit the big 3-0, you should have sorted out most of the reckless habits we tend to fall into as young 20-somethings.This is especially true for money matters, considering you’re close to entering your peak earning years. According to Payscale, college-educated men’s earnings peak at an average age of 48 and women’s earnings peak at 39.To prepare for your peak earning years, here are 13 milestones to aim to achieve before hitting 40:Contribute at least 10% of your income to a retirement accountYou should already be contributing towards your employer’s 401(k) retirement account, and your 30s are a time to increase that contribution. continue reading »last_img read more

4 ways decluttering your home can save you money

first_img 191SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Wendy Moody Wendy Moody is a Senior Editor with CUInsight.com. Wendy works with the editorial team to help edit the content including current news, press releases, jobs and events. She keeps … Web: www.cuinsight.com Details The turn of the season is the perfect time to take a look around your home for ways to reduce clutter. For some of us it’s natural to hold on to things, whether it’s an item that’s sentimental in nature, or an article of clothing you’re hoping to one day fit back into. If you take the time to declutter your living space, though, you may actually be putting money back into your wallet. Below are four ways condensing clutter can pay off in the end.Fewer healthcare expenses. More often than not, a cluttered home equals a dirty or dusty home. Unless you are cleaning your crowded space on a daily basis, it’s very difficult to avoid the unsanitary conditions and poor air quality associated with an unclean home. This can lead to health issues resulting in higher medical expenses.Lower living expenses. Common sense tells you that the less clutter you have, the less space you need. When you downsize you save on monthly rent or mortgage payments, which are often the largest expenditures per month. Additionally, if you own or rent a smaller home, you will inevitably have less expensive utility bills; the cost to maintain the home (yard care, for instance) will also be lessened after downsizing.More household organization. Decluttering allows you to really separate between your wants and needs. After you eliminate what is unnecessary in your home, you can organize what you are left with and go from there. Thus, on your next shopping excursion, you will know exactly what it is you already have, preventing you from making redundant purchases.Additional charitable contributions. Not only does decluttering clear space in your home, it also allows you the opportunity to donate these discarded items to local charities. Locate a Goodwill, Salvation Army, or other community organization accepting contributions. Depending on the amount you give, you may be able to write your donations off on your next tax return.last_img read more

Professional advice from my parents

first_img 39SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Wendy Moody Wendy Moody is a Senior Editor with CUInsight.com. Wendy works with the editorial team to help edit the content including current news, press releases, jobs and events. She keeps … Web: www.cuinsight.com Details As the saying goes, “you can’t pick your parents,” but I am certainly glad I got the ones I did. I can never repay them for the values they have instilled in me and I strive every day to follow their wisdom in both my personal life as a mother and my professional life in the workplace. Below are some of these tips from my parents that have been invaluable to me.Don’t choose your career solely on salary. Of course your pay is an important factor when choosing your professional field. Remember to keep in mind though, on average you will spend more time at work than you will at home. Therefore, it is essential that you enjoy where you work. Yes, it is still work, but not dreading your eight-hour day makes all the difference in the world.Never forget basic professional courtesy. My dad has always told me to be respectful and considerate, even if you don’t always want to be. When receiving a message at work, always respond within one business day; your response should always be polished and courteous no matter if you’re communicating with a CEO or low-level employee.Don’t be afraid to stand up for yourself. There is a difference between being overly opinionated and asserting yourself when necessary. This is something I work to continuously improve upon. It is okay to say how you feel and take part in constructive discussions. It is not inappropriate to give your opinion when it is asked for, especially when it can help others reflect and grow.Follow the golden rule. This seems like an obvious one, but it never hurts to remember it. No matter if you are having a bad day, put personal issues aside and treat coworkers how you would want them to treat you. You never know the personal struggles someone may be going through, so even the smallest kindness can brighten their day. When you are nice to someone, it will make you feel good too.last_img read more

2017 CUNA Volunteer Conference includes key partners

first_imgCUNA will partner with the World Council of Credit Unions and the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Unions (CCCU) for the CUNA Volunteer Conference, Jan. 15-17, in Montego Bay, Jamaica.Through the arrangement, CUNA, World Council and CCCU will work to get Caribbean credit union volunteers involved in the conference.“What’s exciting about this cooperation is that it allows us to expand the traditional audience for CUNA Volunteer Conference,” said Michelle Johnson, Instructional Design Manager at CUNA.“We can’t wait to see the unique perspectives that Caribbean volunteers will bring to the conference and look forward to providing them with meaningful professional value through its expert-led sessions, discussions and networking.”The cooperative relationship between the three organizations will focus on using CUNA Volunteer Conference to provide quality education to volunteers in the Caribbean region. For their part, WOCCU and CCCU will promote the conference to Caribbean credit unions and actively recruit board representatives from the region to attend. continue reading » 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

True or false: Your credit union website should use testimonials

first_imgYou see testimonials all over the internet. Maybe one testimonial has an eagerly smiling picture next to it. Maybe another declares a product to be the greatest thing since sliced bread. Many of the newest and sleekest credit union website designs employ testimonials (example: HFSFCU.org has testimonials all over the place). And there’s a reason for it: studies show testimonials persuade people to act.Why you should use testimonialsWhen it comes to making decisions, “Social Proof” is one of the most motivating factors out there. If humans know that other humans are doing something, they will also want to do that thing. We are naturally drawn to what others like and do, and model our behavior after them. (This is why television sitcoms use canned laugh tracks to encourage you to chuckle.)In 1968, several psychologists conducted an experiment where they had a single man stand at the corner of a busy street and stare up at the sky. Only a couple people stopped to see what he might be looking at. But when they had five people stare at the sky, the number of others who stopped to look increased exponentially. Soon, a whole crowd was assembled. The psychologists found that people simply assumed if several people were looking, there must be something interesting to look at. continue reading » 18SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Colorado credit union sues Federal Reserve Bank

first_img 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » The Fourth Corner Credit Union asked a Colorado federal judge last month to force the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City to issue a master account that would enable the Denver-based state chartered credit union to serve social groups that support legalizing marijuana.The credit union’s civil complaint filed Sept. 29 in U.S. District Court in Denver argues federal law “unambiguously creates a non-discretionary statutory obligation” that requires FRB-KC issue a master account to all depository institutions. The lawsuit alleged that FRB-KC has “invoked an illegal discriminatory procedure” by requesting information from the credit union that the FRB-KC is not entitled to receive from any depository institution that applies for a master account. The credit union is asking a federal judge in Denver to render a declaratory judgment and grant a mandatory injunction that would order the federal reserve bank to immediately issue the master account.TFCCU initially applied for a master account with FRB-KC in November 2014 after it received a state charter to serve the legalized recreational marijuana industry in Colorado. However, the credit union has since changed its business plan to serve social groups supporting the legalization of marijuana. The credit union also said it would not serve marijuana-related businesses in the state until there is a change in federal law that would authorize financial institutions to serve the pot industry.last_img read more

400 credit unions take part in Miracle Jeans Day

first_img 12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » More than 400 credit unions went casual Sept. 13 as a part of the annual Credit Unions for Kids Miracle Jeans Day event in support of Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.Credit union employees donated $5 each for the opportunity to wear jeans to work on a Wednesday. Proceeds will be donated to the credit union’s local Children’s Miracle Network Hospital.“This has been a record year for the program,” says Joe Dearborn, senior director of Credit Unions for Kids, “We are still receiving donations, but with more credit unions participating than ever before, we’re expecting to be able to help even more kids than we’ve been able to in previous years.”With more than 400 credit unions joining the cause, Miracle Jeans Day drew more credit union participants than 2016, when over 300 credit unions took part.last_img read more

3 ways direct deposit helps you save

first_img 31SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Myriam DiGiovanni After writing for Credit Union Times and The Financial Brand, Myriam DiGiovanni covers financial literacy for FinancialFeed. She is also a storytelling expert and works with credit unions to help … Web: www.financialfeed.com Details What’s more annoying: waiting in line at the DMV or paying $20 in banking fees?Believe it or not, according to a NerdWallet survey, consumers say paying banking fees is more annoying.Some 84% of consumers surveyed said would do something to avoid money management fees. Fifty-one percent say they would take one simple step to save: setting up direct deposit.Direct deposits are funds that are electronically deposited to your accounts. Rather than dealing with paper paychecks, income tax returns or Social Security payments, which can be lost or stolen, direct deposit is fast and worry-free.It’s easy to set up. Just provide your employer with the name of your financial institution, the type of account, your account number, the routing number and a voided check. Be sure to read the direct deposit form completely. When you initially set it up, it could take a few payroll cycles for the changes to take effect, so don’t assume the funds will be available via direct deposit immediately. Make sure you follow up to check on the progress of your request.In addition to it being secure, convenient and fast, setting up a direct deposit can also help you save money. Here are three ways.Goodbye monthly maintenance fees: Many financial institutions will waive monthly checking account fees when you use direct deposit for your paycheck. According to GoBankingRates.com average monthly maintenance fees can run as high as $12.Hello perks: Some financial institutions offer additional perks to make direct deposit more appealing. It can be in the form of lower interest rates on a loan or waiving other types of fees.Free your mind: It’s hard to follow the sound advice of paying yourself first to build up savings. Let’s face it, either an unexpected expense pops up or you forget to transfer the funds. Direct deposit can solve this problem; you can set it up to automatically put a set amount into your savings account from each paycheck and the rest into your checking account. The next time you get a raise, adjust your direct deposit so your extra pay goes into a savings or retirement account. You can also arrange to have your tax refund direct deposited directly to your retirement or emergency fund account. It’s painless and you won’t be as tempted spend the money if you remove the option.last_img read more

Senate likely to consider Kraninger nomination to CFPB after Thanksgiving

first_imgThe Senate intends to vote after Thanksgiving on the nomination of Kathy Kraninger to become the director of the CFPB.Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) filed a cloture petition Thursday—a move that indicates he intends to bring the nomination to the floor. That petition limits debate on Kraninger’s nomination and prevents a filibuster.The move comes as speculation grows that Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney, who also serves as acting CFPB director, is angling for a nomination as Secretary of Commerce.There is widespread speculation that the current secretary, Wilbur Ross, may be leaving the administration. President Trump has expressed his unhappiness with Ross several times. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

3 steps to help you prepare for CECL

first_img 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) has issued a new accounting standard called Current Expected Credit Loss (CECL) that will go into effect December 15, 2021. Here are three steps you can take to ensure your credit union is on track to stay compliant with this new standard. Assess your data collection and infrastructureSet aside at least several months – even up to a year – to ensure you have time to analyze your data and infrastructure and start collecting the data you need to determine the credit profile of your credit union. Not only is this step the hardest and costliest to adjust, but many of the CECL models require data that credit unions have not been collecting nor saving.Choose the CECL model that fits your needsCarefully evaluate which CECL model is best for your credit union – there is no one size fits all solution. There are a range of CECL models with differing complexities, data limitations and assumptions that you’ll need to consider while taking in account the loan portfolio of your credit union.Test your CECL model and make necessary adjustmentsOnce you select your CECL model, don’t stop there. Test your model by running data to determine if the results match your expectations and risk profile. If the data generated does not meet your expectations, then you will need to reassess and adjust how loans are marked. You’ll also want have procedures in place for handling these new reports to streamline work processes. While these steps will help you on your way to confidently implementing CECL at your credit union, they are complex. Gain confidence by attending CUNA Current Expected Credit Loss (CECL) School or eSchool, you can learn everything that goes into each of these steps to help make your transition smoother and create an action plan to take back to your credit union. last_img read more

NCUA bans former CEO

first_imgThe NCUA banned last week Linda D. Landry from participating in the affairs of a federally insured financial institution.Landry, a former president/CEO of the $6.9 million Southeast Texas Employees Federal Credit Union in Orange, allegedly stole more than $20,000 from the credit union’s bank account, according to the NCUA’s prohibition order.Through its investigation, the independent federal agency determined Landry converted these funds for her own personal use.She did not admit nor deny this allegation, however, the prohibition order shows. continue reading » 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

The perks of partnership marketing and how to do it well

first_img 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Jennifer Laud Jennifer is a credit union marketing consultant and the owner of Jennifer Laud Consulting. She has a background in strategy and a passion for positioning credit unions to find their … Web: www.jlaud.com Details Just like chocolate-chip cookies and a glass of milk, some partnerships are really a perfect match. Each side brings out the best in the other and the combination shines, elevating the whole to a new level. Co-marketing with a partner can be just as satisfying as watching a movie with popcorn or throwing around a baseball when you have a mitt. Strategically pairing up with someone to do long-term marketing initiatives or short-term campaigns can offer your credit union a number of benefits. First, co-marketing can be incredibly cost-effective. When you find a partner that complements your capabilities, you find efficiencies that you normally don’t get on your own. Some of the best partners have expertise and resources that you do not – like a larger social media following, an in-house creative designer, or fun and popular products that are great for giveaways. Ideally, you’ll be able to offer unique strengths and resources that fill in their gaps – like your physical branch space, an active membership, or specialty accounts. An extension of this benefit is the opportunity to learn new skills or techniques from your partner as you work together.Not only can you gain efficiency with a partner, you can also make your overall budget bigger when you’re able to split costs between the two organizations. So now you’re making your dollars work harder and you have more of them. This makes partnerships particularly great when you’re trying to make a big impact.Another benefit is the potential to get a brand boost when you partner with someone that your target market already likes. A good example of this association effect is in sports marketing. It’s commonplace for a team or athlete to have brands that they work with: Misty Copeland and Under Armour, Peyton Manning and Nationwide, the US Women’s Soccer Team and Nike. If you were watching the Women’s Soccer Team win the World Cup this summer, you constantly saw Nike logos. If you follow Nike, you almost certainly saw inspirational soccer ads and messages floating through your feeds. This marketing boosts visibility for both sides and if good feelings are being generated for one, it easily spills over to the other. How to do Partnership Marketing Well1. Find a Partner With a Similar Target MarketYou don’t just want a partner, you want a partner that your members will like and one that does business with people who will like you. Take a second to consider your best-fit member and what their life looks like. What are all of their different wants and needs, where do they spend their time and money, and what types of businesses would they work with throughout the day, week, or year?  A good practice when considering businesses is to make a list of organizations that your members already patronize and really like to work with. Take a look at card transactions, survey your members, ask your staff, and look for local reviews to get your brain working. The sweet spot is a business that has the same target market, but offers room for growth: not every member is already giving them their business and not every customer or client of theirs is already a credit union member. 2. Identify Your Campaign’s NeedsThere are a lot of different ways you can do a joint campaign. Narrowing down your ideas can help you identify some partners that would work best for your vision. You don’t have to have all the details nailed down – you’ll want to actively work with your partner for that – but you can identify if you’d like to do a campaign based on a contest, a game, something cause-oriented, a particular social platform, an event, etc. A contest or giveaway may get a big boost from partnering with someone who has a strong e-mail list of their own and something to add to a package of prizes. Just think about the popularity of McDonald’s and Hasbro’s annual Monopoly game, started in 1987, to get excited about making a game out of a giveaway promotion. Or, if you want to do something cause-oriented, you may need to look no further than a foundation or not-for-profit associated with a hospital or school you already work with. Maybe you’re just looking for an awareness boost. Consider how Uber partnered with Spotfiy and Pandora to make the ride even more enjoyable. By synching up their music accounts in the Uber app, passengers can listen to their own tunes while getting a ride.Your campaign possibilities are greatly expanded when you bring in a partner, so have fun with it! Consider the types of campaign you’re interested in and that can help you narrow down the list of potential businesses that would be a good fit. 3. Find Someone who Complements YouAs mentioned earlier, great partners have something to bring to the table that you do not, and vice versa. Your marketing campaign will be an easier sell to another business if the partnership has a lot of value for both sides. Look for organizations that have different strengths and weaknesses from yours. Then, consider how you can combine your pooled resources in a way that makes a marketing campaign even stronger. 4. Set the Partnership Terms EarlyA good partnership is one where expectations are clear and there’s a fair breakdown of responsibilities relative to potential gains. Early in your conversations with your partner, you want to lay down the parameters for the relationship so everyone is on the same page. You’re only going to realize all the great benefits of co-marketing if it’s a healthy working relationship.Unfortunately, even well-thought-out plans can take a turn. Maybe you have a partner that isn’t living up to their promises or something happens that drastically impacts one of your businesses. Be open with your communication and, if necessary, dissolve the partnership if things are not going according to the plan. When you’re drafting any kind of agreement, don’t forget to identify what happens in the event things don’t work out – like who owns anything already created and how the parties will handle costs already incurred that cannot be refunded. Partnership marketing can be very fun and very rewarding for your credit union. If you’re looking to try something new or want a way to expand your impact, think about finding another business to work with that can help you make a big splash with your next campaign. When it’s a good fit, these partnerships can easily evolve to produce new opportunities for future collaborations and help both businesses thrive. last_img read more

State Farm breach highlights threat of credential stuffing attacks

first_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Bloomington, Ill.-based insurance and financial services firm State Farm said it suffered a credential stuffing attack in which “a bad actor” confirmed valid usernames and passwords for State Farm online accounts.A State Farm spokesperson told ZDNet the company discovered the credential stuffing attack on July 6, 2019. The company, which filed a data breach notification with the California Attorney General, and on August 7 sent out “Notice of Data Breach” emails to affected online account users, did not reveal the number of impacted accounts.In addition to notifying impacted users, State Farm said it reset all passwords for breached accounts.Deepak Patel, security evangelist at PerimeterX, commented: “Credential stuffing is accomplished by hackers who take advantage of users who often reuse the same passwords across multiple online accounts.” Patel explained stolen credentials combined with personal information from previous breaches, can result in an account takeover. “The vast number of past data breaches means that the amount of credentials available on the dark web is massive.” Patel acknowledged this makes it more difficult than ever for website owners to protect against such attacks, even if their businesses were never involved in a breach. “In this case, hackers likely used automation – bots – to test permutations and combinations of credentials from the dark web until they found those that worked.” Patel added website owners must consider bot mitigation as part of their web application protection strategy to protect against the ongoing threat of ATO. continue reading »last_img read more

Engage employees through targeted retirement plan communications

first_imgYour work force may include a number of employees who are not taking full advantage of your retirement plan and are at risk of not having enough savings to retire comfortably. How can plan sponsors engage employees and encourage them to use their retirement plan effectively? Tailoring employee communications and education can help. Below, we answer questions you may have about targeted communications.Why do targeted communications encourage greater engagement? Different groups of employees often have different retirement planning needs. When a retirement plan communication is tailored toward a specific group, that message becomes more relevant. For example, younger employees may be more interested in a message about the importance of getting an early start on saving and the power of compounding than older employees who are getting close to retirement age.How should employees be segmented? It really depends on the demographics of your work force. Grouping employees by life stages is a relatively common approach. But other criteria, such as income or educational level, also may be useful.In addition to demographics, you may want to look at retirement plan behaviors of your employees. For example, messages can be targeted toward employees who do not participate in the plan, employees who do not contribute enough to receive the full employer matching contribution, employees who do not increase their contributions over time, and employees who take frequent loans from the plan. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading »last_img read more

The real lesson your credit union should learn from Peloton’s ad flop (it’s not what you think)

first_img 48SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Melina Palmer Why do people say one thing and do another? What really drives behavior? How does the brain actually work – and how can we best communicate with it? What does that … Web: www.thebrainybusiness.com Details By now you’ve probably seen the Peloton ad…or at least heard it mentioned at a holiday party. The big lesson for your credit union no one is talking about is the root of why it caused such an uproar–and it’s more than “make a better ad.”Unfortunately, most businesses (credit unions included) are at risk of being the next Peloton without even realizing it. At its core, the problem is with brand inconsistency and not having a well-defined niche.A tale of two PelotonsPeloton is living a double life. It is walking the line between being designed “to connect the world through fitness” (which promotes inclusivity and being for everyone, anywhere) and ads that focus on a very specific demographic (wealthy, already reasonably fit–or at least thin–people).Peloton’s problem (and one many businesses suffer from) is the ads are speaking to one person and the mission is speaking to another. This stems from not committing to a persona, a “well, it’s designed for our persona, but anyone could benefit so we are for everyone” mentality.The problem is, people evaluate brands just like they evaluate people. How long would you want to be around someone who was constantly contradicting themselves?The good news is, this can be fixed relatively simply, but it takes dedication to one singular path. It’s time to choose what matters most and put all the eggs in that basket. Here is what each scenario could look like for Peloton (and either way is perfectly fine):Go with the ads: exclusive with a high-income target marketThink about a brand like Maserati–no one is complaining about their ads not being targeted for everyone. It has clearly defined itself as being for a certain group and income level so there is no reason to get upset at a commercial targeted to those who can afford it.In this scenario, Peloton would need to come out and say, “we are a high-end product made for people who want to invest in themselves and help already fit people shed those last few pounds with the motivation of a group in the comfort of their own homes.”Now all their ads make sense and perfectly fit that brand after this slight reframe.There is no body fat percentage calculator keeping less-than-fit people from buying or using their bikes. And, because we humans are inherently aspirational and strive to be part of the group, it would likely encourage those just below this tier to buy as well.Think about it, when you read that did you have a little spot in the back of your brain think, “well, if it can help already fit people get over their plateaus, I wonder what it would do for me!” You can picture yourself getting fitter with Peloton, and you also are less likely to get offended when the people in the ad don’t look like everyone in the world. You aren’t their ideal customer…yet. (But you might get there faster if you invest in yourself today.)Go with the mission: inclusive and for everyoneHumans relate better to people like us–the ingroup–and without enough context our brains will write a story that fits our own personal narrative. Far too many people struggle with their weight and are sensitive to anything remotely resembling telling us we need to exercise more. It’s a raw nerve.A slight lack of context allowed the internet to assume the husband in the commercial was telling the woman she was fat and needed to exercise more.What if the ad started with her leaving little notes for her husband to find? Perhaps sticky note on the fridge saying, “Reminder: Order Suzie’s Peloton ;)”Or maybe missing a spin class because she got stuck at work and couldn’t make it in time–perhaps a quick text of “sorry babe, won’t make spin again today…meeting ran long :(”Now we know she wants a Peloton. It will let her fulfill her dreams and potentially convey everything the company assumed would be the accepted baseline of their ad.Unfortunately, you can’t assume everyone will have the same understanding of your protagonist as you do. These context points are critical to help everyone understand the story–especially when tapping into a touchy subject like weight.This ad would include a few shots focused on the interaction with others so it feels as though you’re in the same place, like Amazon Echo has done in their commercials. Then, you close with a grid of diverse faces, sweating and smiling with a line like, “The many faces of Peloton. Are you ready to start your journey?”Either ad works fine–but they only work if you pick a lane. Is your credit union fully in alignment throughout the entire organization…or are you set to be the next Twitter victim?last_img read more

6 college students shared their biggest financial worries during COVID-19

first_img 31SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Hannah Lang Hannah Lang is a recent graduate of UNC-Chapel Hill and a marketing coordinator at Zogo, where she writes about credit unions, personal finance and Gen Z. Web: zogofinance.com Details I don’t have much in my savings account. I’m 21 years old, freshly graduated and a string of service jobs and editing gigs at the student newspaper didn’t leave me with much cash to my name.Sometimes, especially with the uncertain times we’re living in, I find myself swimming in what feels like a whirlpool of anxiety: Am I saving enough? Am I spending too much money on groceries? Will I be able to support myself in the future? Will my accounts be cleared out after I pay rent this month?The other day, I wanted to know if I was the only one my age that stressed this much about money. So, in the name of research (and maybe just to help myself feel better), I asked a few college students about their biggest financial concerns. Here’s what they said:Chapel, 22: “I’m probably just worried about being taken advantage of, somehow or some way. I feel pretty good about managing my spending habits, but when it comes to other stuff — credit cards, loans, where I’m working with someone else — I’m worried my lack of experience could lead to me getting screwed over.”Hannah, 20: “My biggest financial concern at this current time is having to pay rent. With no steady income coming in due to the coronavirus, $650 per month is a lot along with groceries and utilities.”Carly, 22: “I’m worried about not having enough in savings to cover emergencies, like car trouble or medical bills.”Brian, 21: “I’ve only been able to support myself in college through a very large but also very finite amount of money given to me by family members. I’m worried that I will be screwed once that runs out, and I’m not being paid much by wherever I’m currently working.”Mac, 18: ”I’m scared of doing or acting in something, and not knowing the terms of it. Like getting a mortgage, but not knowing what I got into.”Kathryn, 21: “I worry about my family’s business being at risk of going under.”I was somehow both surprised and not surprised to learn that I wasn’t the only one with serious financial worries. Though we’re often trivialized or patronized by older generations, I think young people today are smart, observant and fiscally conscious — maybe because we grew up amidst the effects of the 2008 Recession, or watched older generations struggle to pay debt or retire.At Zogo, we’ve talked to hundreds of young people about personal finance, listening to the stories of all the mistakes they’ve made: accumulating heaps of credit card debt, failing to invest an inheritance, buying a car with a 22 percent interest rate. It’s a long list of financial lessons learned the hard way.I don’t want that for myself or for any of the students I talked to, and I can’t think of a credit union that would want that for its members.Even though they’re just kicking off their adult lives, Gen Zers already have their fair share of financial worries. What is your credit union doing to earn their trust?Visit www.zogofinance.com to see how 25 credit unions are using Zogo to connect with the new generation of members.last_img read more

NAFCU talks CU priorities with Biden-Harris transition team

first_imgAs President-elect Joe Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris prepare to take office in January, leaders of NAFCU’s award-winning advocacy team discussed credit union priorities with members of the Biden-Harris transition team.NAFCU Executive Vice President of Government Affairs and General Counsel Carrie Hunt, Vice President of Legislative Affairs Brad Thaler, Vice President of Research and Chief Economist Curt Long, and Director of Regulatory Affairs Ann Kossachev participated in Tuesday’s call with the transition team’s financial agencies group.During the meeting, NAFCU shared its vision for the NCUA as credit unions’ independent regulator and the regulatory and legislative issues credit unions would like addressed. The association recently outlined for Congress several areas – related to easing compliance burdens, supporting more small businesses, allowing credit unions to serve consumers in need, and more – it can address during the lame duck session to support credit unions, their members, and recovery from the coronavirus pandemic. This post is currently collecting data… This is placeholder text continue reading »center_img ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

‘Mr. Robot’: The Show That Will Save Our Summer

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York America, we have found the cure to our summer television doldrums.USA Network on Wednesday debuted its out-of-the-mainstream hacktivist thriller Mr. Robot, which dares to create its own genre of TV activism, whether intentionally or not, by eschewing conventional political norms and aggressively challenging the status quo.Mr. Robot follows a skilled and troubled hacker named Elliot (Rami Malek), who is saturated with Robin Hood-esque ideology. Elliot saunters through city streets in a dark hoodie, only revealing himself when he’s personally confronting targets or poking through their digital lives in the comfort of his dreary apartment.We quickly learn that Elliot repeatedly questions his own mental state and enjoys morphine in moderate dosages, so far as we know. But he is definitely not a fan of America’s corporate overlords. In fact, he’s convinced that the “top 1 percent of the top 1 percent” controls the world. These issues seem to inspire his illegal, yet exhilarating, intrusions into the lives of those he seeks to expose.It’s hard not to compare Elliot to serial killer Dexter Morgan (Dexter), who followed his own moral “code” that allowed him to chop up people who themselves had committed evil acts. Instead of collecting blood samples as a trophy, Elliot keeps a binder filled with CD’s of those he deems morally reprehensible. While Dexter killed to satisfy a natural urge he couldn’t suppress, Elliot seems to act for the greater good, though he does get a measure of joy by upending people’s lives.Mr. Robot pulls no punches, even taking jabs at the world’s most revered icons. Instead of genuflecting on the life of brilliant Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, Elliot can’t help but think of the deplorable conditions that Chinese workers manufacturing Apple products are forced to endure, while the company rakes in billions. The issues of economic inequality and exorbitant student loan debt are also central themes in the premiere episode. And what does he think about the world’s leading social media organization? “I hate Facebook,” Elliot says. Point taken.The pilot episode begins with Elliot uncharacteristically meeting face-to-face with one of his targets. The scene is tense, invoking visceral reactions from both characters as they stare each other down from across a small table.While the interaction is meant to shed insight into Elliot’s brilliant hacks, it also provides a glimpse into the protagonist’s life: he lost his father to Leukemia; he admits to perhaps being a little crazy; he won’t be silenced by money.Despite political views reminiscent of Occupy Wall Street, Elliot works for a computer security company that protects the very institutions he can’t stand, including E Corp., a mega-corporation which Elliot dubbed, “Evil Corp.” His best friend Angela (Carly Chaikin), an account executive at the firm, got him the job.Elliot doesn’t enjoy going to work, but he does feel an allegiance to Angela. So when an unknown hacker conducts a sophisticated Denial of Service (DoS) attack into E Corp.’s systems, Elliott is forced to play hero, despite the company’s representing everything he hates about the power that money breeds.This hack leads him to a shady character played by Christian Slater, who goes on to preach to him about an upcoming revolution, one that would bring about the largest redistribution of wealth in history. On the surface it would seem that such a cause would immediately appeal to Elliot’s own propensity for digital vigilantism, but he comes away conflicted.After several unsuccessful attempts to discover a summer series worth devoting time to, we may finally have found a winner.But the question is will Mr. Robot’s unapologetic take on America’s widening income gap amid Wall Street’s record profits be too much for some viewers to handle?The USA Network doesn’t seem to think so. After one episode it has already been renewed for a second season.last_img read more

Heat Wave to Cook Long Island & Region

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Hope you’re ready for another burst of extreme heat, Long Island.Sweltering mid-90s temperatures are in this weekend’s forecast as a heat wave surges toward the region, according to forecasters. Long Island heat wave temperaturesThe National Weather Service in Upton is predicting a blazing hot start to the weekend on Saturday with a high near 95. Luckily, the mercury should fall about 20 degrees during the evening, providing Long Islanders with a brief respite.Sunday’s expected high temperature is 91, the weather service said.As the forecast currently stands, Long Island will only have the heat to contend with this weekend as no summertime storms are expected. That’s not the case for Friday, however. Potential Friday stormsForecasters are warning of isolated showers and thunderstorms Friday afternoon that could produce small hail, gusty winds, and heavy rain.Another round of heavy rain could drench the Island later in the evening, meteorologists said.The Island is under an air quality alert until 11 p.m. Friday. The alert is triggered when forecasters believe air quality levels spark health concerns. The South Shore is also under a high rip current risk throughout the day and evening.Health officials are advising people prone to elevated levels of pollutants—traditionally the very young and people with pre-existing health problems like asthma or heart disease—refrain from strenuous outdoor activity.PSEG Long Island said it’s monitoring the heat and potential storms and encouraged ratepayers to be mindful of energy usage.The utility recommends that customers:Seal holes and cracks around window air conditionersClose blinds to keep the sun outCool the house only when it’s occupiedReplace air filters, if necessaryUse other household appliance other than ovens to heat foodExcuse us while we find a pool to take a dip in.last_img read more

Taking a look back at the Bandera Family Christmas Dinner, 30 years in the making

first_img(WBNG) — As the Bandera Family Christmas Dinner prepares to celebrate 30 years serving the community next week, 12 News is taking a look back at the event’s history. Organizer Bill Bandera explained Friday, his parents, Carolyn and Bill Bandera, started the dinner back in 1989. Then, the dinner served about 70 people. Shortly after this milestone, however, Bandera’s father passed away. Bandera said he’s working on a new dinner location in Oneonta for next year. Bandera said he never imagined the event would become what it is today, but before he knew it, the team was celebrating 20 years. After spending some time with his mom, however, and seeing just how impactful the event was on the community, Bandera had a change of heart.center_img The next ten years flew by, and the event now serves meals in Binghamton, Endicott and Norwich. “I honestly believed it was over,” he said. “My parents just were like ‘hey you know let’s give back to the community,’ I remember that conversation, ‘let’s do something for the people in this city because we can,'” he described. If you’d like to volunteer for this year’s dinner or sign up for a home delivered meal, visit the event’s website here.last_img read more

Discovery Center promotes tolerance on New Year’s Eve

first_imgThey learned about the celebrations in Japan, Sweden and Canada. Staff at the Discovery Center said learning about other cultures helps promote tolerance. “If we teach children when they’re young that children are children all over the world and they play games and they eat food and they have fun activities to do and just sharing of cultures is really important,” said Director of Special Events Director Cheryl Dutko. The Discovery Center had many New Year celebrations highlighted by a balloon drop every hour.center_img BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — Children at the Discovery Center learned about New Year Celebrations across the world Tuesday.last_img read more

‘Smoke visible from all angles’: Crews respond to Park Avenue fire

first_imgHe could not comment if any animals were inside the house when the fire broke out. Chief Gunn says smoke was visible from all angles of the house when crews arrived. The cause of the fire is under investigation. 12:43 UPDATE: Dispatchers tells 12 News departments from the city and town of Binghamton, Endicott, Endwell, Vestal and more have been called to the scene. This is a developing story. Stay with 12 News for further updates. TOWN OF BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — Multiple fire departments have been called to a 2nd alarm house fire at 658 Park Ave. in the town of Binghamton.center_img TOWN OF BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — Town of Binghamton Assistant Fire Chief Gary Gunn says no one was home at 658 Park Ave. when the fire broke out Wednesday. A 12 News crew at the scene reports Park Avenue is closed as crews work. Crews were dispatched to the scene between 9 and 9:30 a.m. The fire took about 20 minutes to put out, Chief Gunn says. State Police are also at the fire. —–last_img read more

Family reminds couple of love on 50th wedding anniversary through song

first_imgIn the Greenberg family, they say music has been a strong part of their lives. That’s why when Stacey and Mickey couldn’t celebrate, their daughter, Bess, says she and her brothers decided to make a music video with the grandchildren. “They were very surprised and very moved by it all,” said Bess when talking about the moment she video taped her parents watching the video. “Even just thinking about it now, despite the circumstances, it was a really special moment.” The video consisted of the five children singing with pictures and videos throughout the couple’s marriage. Bess says her mother was sad the morning of the anniversary, saying she just wanted to be with her family. She says while it was tough to not be able to celebrate, she says it’s so important to make family feel extra loved during this pandemic. “When we have the ability to let people know that we care, it can change a person’s day. It can change how we feel,” said Bess. VESTAL (WBNG) — When Stacey and Mickey Greenberg couldn’t celebrate their 50th wedding anniversary with their loved ones, their family went to the extra mile to recognize the special day. Stacey and Mickey Greenberg got married on April 13, 1970.last_img read more

When Broome County will be back open for business

first_imgGarnar said he is hopeful most businesses will reopen on May 15. That’s the day governor Andrew Cuomo’s New York on Pause initiative will end. The governor has said construction and manufacturing are some of the industries that will return first. The county executive said by preparing as much as possible, he wants to bring business back to normal. “Most of our businesses, in fact if not all of them, could start May 15th if we are all able to adhere to these guidelines that the state has put out for us,” Garnar told 12 News Thursday. “I think all businesses could open.” While the final decision is up to New York State, there are preparations to be made before so counties across the state can be ready.center_img (WBNG) — On Thursday, Broome County Executive Jason Garnar gave 12 News the first look at when the county will reopen. Garnar said those guidelines are part of a twelve point plan the state has developed to prepare counties to reopen. He says there will be limits in place to start, such as restaurants only opening at fifty percent capacity to begin.last_img read more

Rain doesn’t stop 2nd annual Pastor Lyle Ward Memorial Fundraiser

first_imgChapter president Curtis Hammond said the money raised will go toward putting the kids in camps and giving them real life experiences. BINGHAMTON (WBNG) – On Saturday, The Punishers Law Enforcement Motorcycle Club put on the 2nd Annual Pastor Lyle Ward Memorial Fundraiser. The club hopes the fundraiser can return to normal next summer. “My family adopted four foster care kids out of the system, so foster care is huge in my family,” Hammond said. “The foster care system around here needs as much help as we can give them so that’s why we do this event.” Hammond, who is also the grandson of Pastor Ward, told 12 News the foster care system has always been very important to his family. Due to COVID-19, this year’s fundraiser was a drive through barbecue. From late morning to early afternoon cars flooded the parking lot of the Lowe’s in Binghamton to get a barbecue dinner. The fundraiser raises money for kids in the foster care system in Broome County. last_img read more

Stray Haven holds free dog and cat rabies clinic

first_imgExecutive director Jen Woodward-Renyolds says the organization wanted to give back to those in need with pets.  Stray Haven will be conducting more free rabies clinics throughout 2021. “This gives a service that they need,” Woodward-Renyolds said. “They have pets. They need to get shots. They can’t afford or get into local veterinarians, so we are just providing this service to help pet owners.”  WAVERLY (WBNG) — Stray Haven held a free dog and cat rabies clinic for members of the community. Pet owners also could get a distemper shot and a microchip for fifteen dollars each.  In partnership with the Tioga County Health Department, the organization had veterinarians on site providing free rabies shots.  The clinic was drive thru style. The clinic expected to administer 300 rabies shots. last_img read more