With the 2017 Caribbean Festival of Arts (CARIFESTA) set to be held later this year in Barbados, the nation’s Prime Minister, Freundel Stuart, has hinted at a rounded cultural experience for the hundreds of regional and international patrons expected for the Region’s premier festival.CARIFESTA XIII will be held from August 17 to 27 under the theme “Asserting Our Culture Celebrating Ourselves”.Speaking with reporters on the sidelines of the recently concluded Inter-Sessional Meeting of the Conference of Heads of Government of Caribbean Community (Caricom), the Barbadian leader outlined that his Culture, Sports and Youth Ministry which is leading the charge on the preparations for the festival, has been very active and timely in its planning.“We’re getting all of our infrastructure ready and significant numbers of countries have already indicated that they are coming to Barbados and that they are going to be participating in CARIFESTA. So we are, on present indications, on score to be ready for the day on which the festival is supposed to begin and we’re optimistic that we are going to have a very successful CARIFESTA.”According to Prime Minister Stuart, the level of enthusiasm evident not only in Barbados, but also in those member countries willing to participate gives the satisfaction of an impending successful CARIFESTA in Barbados in August.Alluding to what visitors can expect from Barbados at this year’s festival, the Head of State explained that all CARIFESTAs have their own unique characters because they take place in different countries. He noted that since the first CARIFESTA held in Guyana, the festival has since changed its character to reflect the nation where it is being held.“Each host country tries to put its own cultural stamp on the festival and therefore, we expect that Barbados, while we’re having visiting artistes from other parts of the hemisphere, there will be a peculiar Barbadian stamp on CARIFESTA 2017.”Additionally, the Barbadian Leader sought to remind that his home country had hosted CARIFESTA back in 1981 and so this is not virgin territory for them. “So we know the course. CARIFESTA 81 was, from every report that I can remember, was a successful and we intend CARIFESTA 2017 to a resounding success as well.”Local media has reported Barbados’ big plans for the usual spectacular opening and closing ceremonies, the super concerts featuring some of the Region’s top artistes, and sultry country nights.During the recent Caricom Inter-Sessional Meeting, the regional Heads of Government acknowledged the importance of the festival to the Caribbean identity and urged full participation in the event. In fact, they accepted the offers of Trinidad and Tobago to host CARIFESTA XIV in 2019 and Antigua and Barbuda to host CARIFESTA XV in 2021.
…as relief efforts continue in affected locationsAs floodwaters recede in several locations across Region Eight (Potaro-Siparuni), the Indigenous community of Kanapang remains under threat, given the reduced access to the area.Guyana Times was on Sunday informed that deploying relief to this community has proved to be a challenge as the roads in the area near the Ireng River were washed away by the floodwaters.The flooding in Kanapang as seen on SaturdayAccording to information received, boats must be utilised to reach the flood-hit village via the Orinduk route. This publication understands that there were also reports of flooding in Cheung Mouth, Region Eight, but communication difficulties have hindered contact with that community.Amerindian Peoples Association (APA) Member Michael McGarrell related to Guyana Times on Sunday afternoon that relief efforts by a number of bodies were continuing to alleviate the flood crisis. He reiterated that some 22 families lost everything as their homes were washed away.“They are really in need of food and clothing. The Amerindian Peoples Association staff has been on the ground since Friday visiting the affected communities; the situation is really grim, we are appealing for more donations,” he noted.He further highlighted that his organisation has been in collaboration with the Region Eight Regional Democratic Council (RDC) officials to take supplies to the affected locations. McGarrell pointed out that the public can donate to the Amerindian Peoples Association, Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry and the Civil Defence Commission (CDC).Residents in Chenapau get much-needed suppliesThe CDC and the Public Health Ministry, along with several local businesses and organisations, assisted the residents on Saturday morning, delivering food items as well as health-care services. The six main affected areas are Chenapau, Waipa, Kaibarupai and Itabac, Sand Hill Settlement and Kanapang. The water level in these six villages has been receding. Four planeloads of relief supplies were dispatched to Chenapau and Orinduik on Saturday, while relief supplies for Waipa, Kaibarupai and other villages were taken to the villages from the CDC’s Forward Operations Centre at Orinduik.The food items the residents received included farine, cassava bread, rice, tasso, corned mutton/beef, sardines, tuna, salted fish, salted meat, porridge stuff, milk, sugar, salt, Milo, Ovaltine, drink mixes, chowmein/pasta, peas, casareep, crackers and biscuits.Other needed items were identified as tarpaulin, mosquito nets, hammocks, sheets, blankets, towels, toilet paper, disposable napkins, sanitary pads, laundry soap/detergent, bleach, bath soap, matches/lighters, rope, garbage bags, water purification tablets, clothing, reusable plastic eating utensils, buckets and insect repellent.The Public Health Ministry has also dispatched several doctors, nurses, Community Health Workers and Environmental Health Officers to the affected communities. Junior Public Health Minister, Dr Karen Cummings had disclosed that the Ministry prepared flood kits which include antifungal creams, panadol syrup and items to prevent outbreaks in those areas.The CDC had further reported that several villages in Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) were also suffering from flooding, but these communities were not as severely affected as their Region Eight counterparts.The flood-hit Region Seven villages included Purima, Kako, Jawalla, Phillipi, Kamarang and Duebamang. Region Seven Regional Disaster Risk Management Systems (RDRMS) and Regional Disaster Risk Management Committee (RDRMC) have been activated.A team was said to have already been deployed to the affected areas to conduct assessments and reconnaissance. Farmland in the main and some residential areas has been flooded in the Region Seven villages. The flooding in both regions has persisted as a result of excessive recent rainfall in the highland regions. Many of the communities are located in mountainous valleys.
US$18M signing bonus…Regional head says MSG may have to includecontroversy in official reportBy Jarryl BryanThe fact that Government collected a legitimate US$18 million signing bonus from oil giant ExxonMobil but failed to disclose this transaction to the nation has not gone unnoticed by international watchdog Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI).Guyana became a member of the group just two months ago, with its candidature application submitted in August in Oslo, Norway.When contacted by this publication for a comment on the controversary, Regional Director of the EITI International Secretariat, Dr Francisco Paris, related via email that he was well aware of the issue.Paris, who has responsibility for Latin America and the Caribbean, said EITI anticipated that Guyana’s Multi-Stakeholder Group (MSG) would use its judgement to include the signing bonus in its report.Paris noted that the first report on Guyana is expected to cover the 2016 fiscal year.According to Section Four of the 2016 EITI Standard, titled ‘REVENUE COLLECTION’, the organisation “requires a comprehensive reconciliation of company payments and government revenues from the extractive industries. The EITI requirements related to revenue collection include: (4.1) comprehensive disclosure of taxes and revenues; (4.2) sale of the state’s share of production or other revenues collected in-kind; (4.3).”Paris noted that the Standard sets out requirements for descriptions of each revenue stream, “related materiality definitions and thresholds” to be disclosed in the report. In order to establish materiality definitions and thresholds, Paris explained, the Multi-Stakeholder Group should consider the size of the revenue streams relative to total revenues.The regional executive made it clear that the Standard mandates that revenue streams, inclusive of discovery, production and signature bonuses, have to be included in the report. Other revenue streams include profit oil and taxes, royalties, dividends, licence fees, and other significant payments.Regional Director of the EITI International Secretariat, Dr Francisco Paris“In Guyana’s case, the MSG must decide the scope of Guyana’s EITI first report, including fiscal year(s) to cover and material revenues to be included,” Paris stated. “The first report is due on 25 April 2019.”Guyana’s candidacy to EITI was approved during that body’s 38th International Board Meeting, held in the Philippines. Guyana officially submitted its application to the International Secretariat of EITI in Oslo, Norway, in August.Government officials had hitherto always either denied that Government had receiving a signing bonus, or had pleaded ignorance of this development. But, earlier this month, proof came to light that Government had collected a signing bonus when a letter dated September 2016 and addressed to Bank of Guyana Governor Dr. Gobind Ganga had instructed him to set up a special account for the money.This forced Government to admit receiving the money; and there has since been much criticism of the subterfuge, with Government explaining that the money was not disclosed because of national security implications.Government has defended itself by saying that, notwithstanding the secrecy, no part of this money was touched, and that it was to be used to pay legal fees arising out of settling Guyana’s border controversy.MSGAhead of the last round of countrywide outreaches in July, a Multi-Stakeholder Group was formed. It comprised government institutions, mining companies, and civil society organisations.This group had developed a work plan for the first few years of implementing the EITI, and will oversee the activities with support of the GYEITI Secretariat in Guyana. The National Coordinator for the Guyana EITI Secretariat (GYEITI) is Dr Rudy Jadoopat. The MSG itself is comprised of a total of 12 representatives equally drawn from the Government, the business community and civil society.The Government representatives include Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman and Guyana Revenue Authority Commissioner Godfrey Statia. Industry representatives include Exxon Country Manager Rod Henson, and Guyana Gold and Diamond Miners Association President, Patrick Harding.Under the EITI Standard, companies publish what they pay to Governments, and Governments publish what they receive in an annual EITI country report. In many countries, most of the revenues from natural resources accruing at subnational levels are not derived from company payments to local government entities, but from transfers to Central Government.Depending on the revenue-distribution frameworks in place, these transfers can be a considerably larger source of revenue for subnational entities than taxes and fees collected at local levels.The revised EITI Standard requires that such transfers are reported, where mandated by law and where material.Where companies are legally or contractually required to make social contributions, these must be disclosed under EITI standards. Where countries collect significant revenues from the transportation of oil, gas and minerals, such as pipelines, the Government would also be required to disclose the revenues received.Validation is procured and managed by the EITI International Secretariat, rather than by implementing countries. Countries undertake validation more frequently, with compliant countries being revalidated every three years, as opposed to every five years under the old rule.Guyana’s first EITI Report must be published within the next 18 months, and the country will be required to commence validation within two and a half years. Where validation verifies that Guyana has made satisfactory progress on all of the requirements, the EITI Board will designate the country as EITI-compliant.The EITI is a global standard to promote the open and accountable management of oil, gas, and mineral resources.
Re “DWP: L.A.’s best jobs” (Sept. 30): Regarding DWP pay scales, the welfare and job satisfaction of the people who reliably bring water and electric power to my house and take less pleasant things away is important to me. If you are going to publish their pay scales, please also publish the pay scales of everyone at your newspaper, in the interests of fairness. – Mike Gockel Northridge AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREChargers go winless in AFC West with season-ending loss in Kansas CityLike other folks I got back in town just in time to see our folks downtown grab, root and growl in figuring out ways to tax us once again. I am amazed that we just stand around and let it happen. I say tax the apartment dwellers $40 a unit instead of the homeowners because that’s where the gangs live. I say take $10 from every employee in the DWP and then go after every LAUSD employee who has a credit card and take it away from them. Audit their spending and charge them for personal expenses. Lastly, take away every vehicle that someone thinks they’re important enough to have and sell it. Pay them 45 cents a mile like most other people get. – Wynne Ritch Granada Hills Taking a stand Re “Deal misses DWP pay level” (Oct. 2): How long is it going to take Angelenos to realize we are being held hostage and the ransom is enormous? First, the DWP, whose equipment should have been replaced decades ago, gives their employees outrageous salaries. They are going to raise our rates, which the council will happily approve. On top of that, other city employees are demanding equally inflated salaries. Even if all demands are met, many bond issues will be on the ballot and the council will find ways to raise our property taxes. We live within our budget; why is it inconceivable to expect the city to do as well? If we don’t take a stand, the only change will be for more abuses. It is up to us. – Geraldine Thompson Los Angeles County seal Re “County seal issue may go to top court” (Oct. 3): In 1957, the Los Angeles County supervisors passed a decree requiring all county residents of the Muslim faith to affix a Christian cross to documents allowing them to own property. That same day, Jews who opened a new business found themselves having to stamp a cross on their fictitious business name statement. Hindu couples needed a symbol of Christianity on their marriage license. This un-American act was finally corrected in 2004. The Thomas More Law Center’s contortion of the Constitution is pathetic. I only hope they reimburse the taxpayers for their shameful and frivolous suit. – Martin Korn Valley Glen Traffic-light cameras Re “Red light, green light” (Our Opinions, Oct. 10): Another reality of not being able to ticket red-light runners caught on cameras is that license plates are required to make the system work. In our neighborhood, we have a family that ignores the motor vehicle code, which requires license plates on every vehicle. They have four expensive vehicles. Only one has plates (which were on them when they obtained it). The other three only have the “dealers ads” in place of the plates. The first was obtained new about three years ago, the second was obtained new about two years ago and the third was obtained about three months ago. Law enforcement needs to be more observant. Cameras or witnesses will never be able to supply the necessary license numbers if needed. – John Whitmore West Hills Keating obituary Re “Veteran of Irish war for freedom” (Obituary, Oct. 5): I was appalled to read a glowing obituary of Dan Keating, who was a radical member of a terrorist organization – the Irish Republican Army. Painting a glorified remembrance of a radical terrorist who died at the age of 105 is a complete act of disrespect to all of the victims of the terror campaigns and organizations that this criminal participated in. There is a moral and intellectual bankruptcy around attempting a moral equivalence around “one person’s terrorist is another’s freedom fighter.” Featuring an obituary of an old Irish terrorist who embraced the bloodiest and most radical of the Irish terrorist organizations is irresponsible and clearly not newsworthy. Just as we didn’t highlight and praise the convictions and actions of Zarqawi when he was killed, we should not honor this terrorist. – Ron Mechsner Stevenson Ranch160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Real Madrid star James Rodriguez in action for Colombia 1 Manchester United have tabled a £34million bid for Real Madrid playmaker James Rodriguez, according to reports in Spain.The Colombia star has dropped well down the pecking order at the Bernabeu since Zinedine Zidane took charge and his opportunities are again expected to be limited next season.According to Don Balon, Jose Mourinho is keen to add James as an attacking option to his squad next season and has sanctioned a bid.Paris Saint-Germain and West Ham have also registered an interest in the 25-year-old but it now appears United are best-placed to land him.Real president Florentino Perez would prefer to keep hold of James due to his commercial value, but Zidane has apparently stepped in and told his boss that the player’s services are no longer required in the Spanish capital.
Charlie McConalogue TD has said the Minister for Education should not proceed unilaterally with Junior Cert changes while teachers want more negotiations.Charlie McConalogue TDThe Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Education and Skills said the Government has only itself to blame for the current state of relations with teacher representatives regarding reform of the Junior Cert.Deputy McConalogue commented: “It is no wonder relations between the Department of Education and teacher unions are at an all-time low when you consider the manner in which this government approached the issue of junior cert reform from the outset. “The Minister’s comments today that she intends to proceed with planned Junior Cert reforms without agreement will only serve to worsen relations with teachers. In fact such action would be extremely provocative given the fact that teachers have said they will not proceed with further strike action but do want more negotiations. I do not want to return to a situation where students could face more disruption in the run-up to exams.”He added the reality is the Government botched this reform process from the outset and alienated teachers in process.“You simply cannot engage in a reform of this magnitude without bringing key stakeholders with you. The genuine concerns that teachers were raising simply were not take into account until they had engaged in industrial action.“The Government needs to restore a spirit of partnership to the process of Junior Cert reform and just acting unilaterally will do nothing to bring that about.” GOV REAPING REWARD OF BOTCHED TEACHER ENGAGEMENT ON JUNIOR CERT REFORM – McCONALOGUE was last modified: March 1st, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Charlie McConaloguedonegalGovernmentJunior Cert
Today is D-day for Donegal as they face neighbours Derry in the Ulster Championship at MacCumhaill Park (throw-in 5pm).Champions Donegal go into the game knowing they have never been able to defend their title successfully.A large crowd is expected in Ballybofey with high expectations of Donegal despite their recent poor league form. However Jim McGuinness’ side are favourites going into today’s game despite claims that powerhouse Michael Murphy is still not fit enough to start the game.McGuinness has brought the squad away for a number of days training in Kildare heading into today’s game.He says the training and time away together has been invaluable.He also says that he doesn’t feel under pressure to deliver the Ulster title again. “Our focus is progressing our own gameplan and we are not thinking about retaining any titles.“It’s a derby and it will be a great game of football. It’s championship football and it all counts on the day.“It’s all about pride and passion and they will bring that with them. They carry a serious threat and we have to be very wary and prepare ourselves for a serious game of football,” he said. DONEGAL HOPING TO MARCH ON IN ULSTER AT EXPENSE OF NEIGHBOURS DERRY was last modified: June 16th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:DerrydonegalUlster Championship
Galatasaray and Besiktas are set to go head-to-head to sign out-of-favour Liverpool striker Divock Origi in January.The Belgium international is yet to feature for the Reds this season and is likely to leave in January in search of regular football. Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won targets Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Latest Liverpool News latest huge blow gameday cracker REVEALED REVEALED Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? Liverpool update ‘Champions Wall’ after ending 2019 as European and world champions Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars 1 Origi, 23, is also wanted by Liverpool’s fierce rivals Everton, with reports emerging earlier this week that Marco Silva is preparing a mid-season swoop for the striker.But, according to Turkish-Football, both Galatasaray and Besiktas remain front runners to land Origi and are set to go head-to-head in a battle to snap him up.Origi spent last season on loan at German club Wolfsburg and turned down the chance to leave Liverpool in the summer due to his desire to fight for his place under Jurgen Klopp.However, with no obvious route back into the first-team picture at Anfield, it would appear Origi will be on the move in January as the race to sign him hots up. Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January shining REVEALED The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star Divock Origi last played in pre-season RANKED TROPHY Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury
It is absolutely clear the government has no intention of taking ability to pay into account in a meaningful way in the changes being made to the property tax, according to Fianna Fáil Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill.Senator Ó Domhnaill was speaking after the opening of the Seanad debate on the Finance (Local Property Tax) (Amendment) Bill 2013.Senator Ó Domhnaill stated, “The government is still insisting that a single person earning anything more than €288 gross per week or a family with anything more than €480 gross per week is not even entitled to defer the property tax liability. The government seems to have no concern whatsoever for the thousands of people who are struggling to make ends meet as it is and who simply have no means to pay this property tax. “I had hoped that the government would address the ability to pay issue in a meaningful way in this amendment bill. Instead the fundamental unfairness of the property tax has been reinforced and no tangible effort has been made to deal with the situation of people on low incomes, those living with mortgage arrears and negative equity, and those who paid large amounts of stamp duty and development levies in recent years. This tax will now disproportionately hit those on low and middle incomes and those experiencing difficulties with their mortgage.“The original Property Tax bill was rammed through the Dáil & Seanad before Christmas. The same will be done with this amendment bill this evening. This is being done to allow the Revenue to issue letters to 1.9 million households starting on 11th March, many of whom can ill afford to pay this unfair and penal tax on the family home.”Also in the Seanad, Senator Jimmy Harte launched a scathing attack on Sinn Fein, pointing out that a property tax operates in the North. ‘GOVERNMENT FAILS TO RECOGNISE INABILITY TO PAY PROPERTY TAX’ – SENATOR was last modified: March 6th, 2013 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:’GOVERNMENT FAILS TO RECOGNISE INABILITY TO PAY PROPERTY TAX’ – SENATORjimmy harte
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A conference for fruit and vegetable growers is set for Feb. 7 at the Oasis Conference Center, 902 Loveland-Miamiville Road in Loveland.The Southwestern Ohio Specialty Crop Conference offers “a little something for everyone,” said Greg Meyer, Ohio State University Extension educator in Warren County and event organizer.“We have hosted a grower school for specialty crops in southwestern Ohio for over 30 years,” Meyer said. “We decided to expand it to offer more classes and, in 2016, we moved the venue to the Oasis Conference Center to give us more space for concurrent sessions.”The conference, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., offers five concurrent sessions in fruit production, vegetable production, specialty cropping systems, pesticide safety and farm management, and marketing and food safety.In addition, some sessions offer private pesticide applicator credits in three categories, Meyer said: Core, 3 (Fruits and Vegetables) and 5 (Greenhouse). He encourages applicators to bring their license to the conference so OSU Extension personnel can check their recertification status and determine how much training they need to become recertified.Preregistration is required by Feb. 3 and is available online at regonline.com/swspecialtycropconf. The $50 fee includes a continental breakfast, buffet lunch and a USB memory stick containing handouts.For a complete session descriptions and more information, including a link to the registration page, go to go.osu.edu/swohfvsc. Anyone with questions may contact Meyer at email@example.com or 513-695-1311.