Export Development Canada to pay 969M dividend to federal government


first_imgOTTAWA – Export Development Canada is paying a $969-million dividend to the federal government this year.The payment compares with a dividend of $786 million the agency paid last year and $500 million paid in 2016.EDC generates revenue primarily from interest on loans, fees on its guarantee products, and premiums on its insurance products.The crown corporation says it finished 2017 with $60 billion in assets and earned $1 billion for the year.EDC’s full annual report will be released in the second quarter.last_img

CP NewsAlert Manitoba premier moves up election date to Sept 10


first_imgThe Canadian Press WINNIPEG — Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister says he is moving up the next provincial election by more than a year.The next vote was scheduled for October 2020, but Pallister has set the day for this Sept. 10.He had been hinting for months that he was preparing to go early.By law, the campaign can’t officially start until 28 to 35 days before Manitobans go to the ballot box.Pallister’s Progressive Conservatives were elected in 2016 with 40 of the legislature’s 57 seats — the largest majority government in Manitoba in a century.The Tories recently fulfilled their biggest campaign promise by cutting the provincial sales tax to seven per cent from eight.The cut is to take effect July 1, six years to the day after the former NDP government raised the tax.last_img read more

George Takei Receives Honorary Doctorate At Cal State LA Commencement


first_imgGeorge H. Takei, the highly accomplished actor and tireless champion for the arts and social justice, received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Friday during Cal State LA’s Commencement.Actor and activist George H. Takei received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters Friday during CommencementCredit/Copyright: J. Emilio Flores/Cal State LAStudents gave Takei two standing ovations during the ceremony.The 79-year-old Takei, who is best known for playing the character Mr. Sulu on the original, award-winning television series Star Trek, also delivered the keynote address during the undergraduate ceremony for the College of Natural and Social Sciences.His address was a prism into the trials and tribulations that Americans have endured during the 20th and 21st centuries.Takei recounted growing up with Mexican American families on Los Angeles’ Eastside, not far from Cal State LA. But that life was interrupted when World War II broke out. He and his family were among more than 100,000 people of Japanese ancestry in the U.S. who were rounded up and sent to internment camps.Living behind barbed wire at Camp Rohwer, in the swamps of Arkansas, and Camp Tule Lake, on a scrub-covered plain of northern California, left a lasting impression.“I can never forget the tall sentry towers with the machine guns pointed down at us. I remember the search light that followed me when I made the midnight runs from our barrack to the latrine,” he recalled. “Throughout my acting career, because of my childhood imprisonment, an unjust incarceration, I have always been mindful of the preciousness of my rights as an American as well as my responsibilities as a citizen.”Takei, who earned a B.A. and M.A. in theater from UCLA, has more than 40 feature films and hundreds of television guest-star roles to his credit. He boasts more than 9.7 million fans on his Facebook page and has used the platform to advocate on behalf of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights.He was a former board member of the Southern California Rapid Transit District and helped establish the Arts in Transit program, which led to each Los Angeles Metro station having its own distinctive artwork. He was appointed by President Bill Clinton to the board of the Japan-United States Friendship Commission and received the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Rosette, from Japanese Emperor Akihito for his contributions to improving relationships between the two nations.In closing his Commencement address, Takei noted that the democratic process can be unruly, even unjust. But as Americans, he told the crowd, we have a responsibility to be engaged and to strive to make our country a better place for all people, regardless of their differences.“We, your generation and mine, have a challenge to boldly go where we have never gone before,” he said, referencing a well-known line from the opening of Star Trek. “Let us learn from the lessons of history, and, as the founding fathers did, shape a new nation to fit the ever advancing, constantly innovating, dynamic challenges of the 21st century,” Takei said. “Let us boldly go where we have never gone before.”last_img read more

Why Shape of Water Director Guillermo del Toro Loves Shooting in Canada


first_imgAdvertisement Advertisement The film’s producer J. Miles Dale reveals why Toronto has become the helmer’s home base and what del Toro might be working on next.The Baltimore of 1962 is meticulously re-created in Guillermo del Toro’s multi-Oscar-nominated sci-fi romance, The Shape of Water. From an iconic, neon-lit diner to an ornate movie theater, the film revels in Americana from another age, making the fact that it was shot in and around Toronto all the more impressive. The film marks del Toro’s third collaboration with producer — and Toronto native J. Miles Dale and is the director’s fourth consecutive feature to be shot in Canada. Dale talked to THR about why the Mexican auteur now calls Toronto home and the Oscar odds for Shape of Water.Toronto hosted shoots for earlier Oscar best picture winners like Chicago and Spotlight. What’s different with The Shape of Water? LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Login/Register With: Courtesy of Fox Searchlight Picturescenter_img Facebook Advertisement With Chicago, there were no Canadian designers on that. And even Spotlight, it wasn’t a heavy design movie. On The Shape of Water, other than the cinematographer and a couple of special effects and makeup artists, every single person from the production and costume designers, the sound team, the editor — they’re all Canadian. It tells the world: “We can play with anybody now. Our top people are right up there. You don’t have to go anywhere else.”Does that mean you and del Toro will make all your future movies in Toronto?The script will always tell you what it needs to be. If you need to do something on a mountain, you can’t do that here. If you’re stranded in the Pacific, you can’t do that here. Twitterlast_img read more

Respiratory disease rates in Nunavut known for years why has so little


first_imgKent Driscoll APTN National NewsA study recently confirmed what most living in the North already knew.Infants in Nunavut and Nunavik suffer from the worst rates of respiratory disease in the world.The reason? Well, the same information has been published for years.APTN went to ask Nunavut’s health department if they’ve known what the problem is for so long, why has so little changed.last_img

US productivity shows no gain in fourth quarter


first_imgWASHINGTON – U.S. productivity showed no gain in the fourth quarter, the poorest performance since an outright decline in the first quarter of 2016. It was further evidence of the struggles the country is facing in boosting worker efficiency.The flat reading the Labor Department reported Wednesday was a slight improvement over an initial estimate a month ago that productivity had actually fallen at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 0.1 per cent last quarter. Labor costs rose at an annual rate of 2.5 per cent in the fourth quarter, a modest gain that followed a 1 per cent increase in the third quarter.For the year, productivity rose 1.2 per cent, a weak performance but a slight improvement from no gain at all in 2016. Boosting productivity is seen as the country’s biggest economic challenge.The zero growth in productivity in 2016 was the poorest performance in 35 years, since productivity fell by 1 per cent in 1982.Productivity, the amount of output per hour of work, is the key factor governing rising living standards. If productivity improves, it allows companies to pay their workers more without having to boost the cost of their products, a move that can increase inflation.Without improvements in productivity, the Trump administration will have difficulty achieving its goal of doubling the rate of economic growth to 3 per cent or better. An economy’s potential for growth is determined by growth in the labour force, which is determined largely by birth rates and immigration, as well as the growth in productivity.Productivity is the amount of output per hour of work. The small revision to the fourth quarter figure reflected the fact that the government last week made a slight revision to overall output, as measured by the gross domestic product, showing the GDP grew at a 2.5 per cent annual rate rather than the 2.6 per cent gain initially estimated.last_img read more

Ontario asks court to toss application from Tesla over electric vehicle rebates


first_imgTORONTO – Ontario’s Progressive Conservative government has asked the province’s Superior Court to throw out a petition from the Canadian arm of Tesla Inc. that claims the U.S. company has been treated unfairly in the government’s cancellation of an electric vehicle rebate program.The provincial government’s ministry of transportation said in a response filed Tuesday that there is no merit to the electric car maker’s application for judicial review, arguing the decision is government policy that does not fall within the court’s jurisdiction.“While framed as a judicial review of an ostensibly administrative decision, the application is essentially an attack on a core policy decision made by Ontario’s cabinet,” it said in the court filing.“Such a decision is not reviewable by the court and is not a basis to quash the decision.”In July, the government announced the cancellation of the rebate program but said that incentives would be honoured for vehicles ordered through a dealership if they are delivered and registered by Sept. 10.Tesla sells vehicles directly to customers rather than through a dealership, making its vehicles ineligible for the incentives under the new rules.Tesla Motors of Canada said in its application that the decision by Premier Doug Ford’s government to halt the program left hundreds of its customers no longer eligible for rebates they expected to get when they ordered their vehicles.It claims Tesla was also left out of a program that allows purchasers of other brands to receive rebates during a transition period and that the government has given it no reason for its exclusion.Tesla said the government’s decision has “already inflicted substantial harm” on the company in the form of lost sales and potential damage to its reputation because it leaves the impression that Tesla “may be singled out for future arbitrary treatment.”It asked the Ontario Superior Court to quash the government’s move.However, the government’s response said the decision to revoke the rebate program was made for “valid public reasons.”The government said it decided to include only independently owned franchised dealerships in the transition funding in order to minimize negative impacts to small- or medium-sized businesses, and that such dealerships may have vehicle inventory or made orders with manufacturers that could not be returned.“Tesla Canada is effectively asking this court to make a declaratory order at the behest of its customers to provide them a grant from public funds.”last_img read more

Door is open for India to bring serious trade plan to table


first_imgWashington: Observing that trade has been an area of frustration in bilateral ties, the US has said that the door is open if India is prepared to bring a serious proposal to the table to address the issues related to trade and market access.The US in November last year revoked duty-free concessions on import of at least 50 Indian products, mostly from handloom and agriculture sectors, reflecting the Trump administration’s tough stand on trade-related issues with New Delhi. Also Read – Ensure strict implementation on ban of import of e-cigarettes: revenue to CustomsA senior State Department official said Friday that the US is proud to be India’s largest export market and most important economic partner. “But we have struggled with regulatory issues that get in the way of the ease of doing business and market access for American companies and products,” said the official. “Trade has frankly been an area of frustration in the relationship, but the door is open if India is prepared to bring a serious proposal to the table,” he said. Despite intensive engagement with the Government of India for nearly a year, India did not assure the US that it would provide equitable and reasonable access to its market, which led to its termination from the Generalised System of Preferences programme, the official said. Also Read – Coking coal shipments rise 15 pc to 29 MT at 12 state-run ports in Apr-Sep”While we were pleased that the growing US exports to India, largely crude oil and LNG, led to a 7.1 per cent reduction in our bilateral goods trade deficit last year, many structural challenges in our trade relationship have yet to be resolved,” said the senior State Department official. During the just concluded visit of the Foreign Secretary, while the focus was on strategic, defence and regional issues, in particular Pakistan and Afghanistan, but the visiting diplomat is believed to have been conveyed that the ball is in India’s court on resolving the trade related issues. The US is understood to have told India that the Trump administration is willing to review its decision to revoke its GSP privileges to India, if New Delhi comes with a credible proposal to address the market access issues that America has been talking about for nearly a year. The GSP notification is still within the 60 days period, after which the benefits would formally be withdrawn, it is reliably learnt that the US has told India that it is not too late. But it is unlikely to happen, given that India is now into an election campaign mode, officials on both sides said. While India argues that it is difficult to take any policy decision at this point of time because of the elections and the model code of conduct, American points out that it has decided to take its decision on revoking GSP privileges only after it exhausted all its options with India. During talks with India, America is believed to have said that “there are creative ways of solving” all the trade related issues that addressed concerns of both the countries.last_img read more

HC stays till Apr 8 interim fee hike by pvt unaided schools


first_imgNew Delhi: The Delhi High Court Wednesday stayed till April 8 interim hike in fees by private unaided schools in the national capital on a plea of the AAP government challenging its single judge order allowing the same.A bench of Justices S Muralidhar and I S Mehta also issued notice and sought response of Action Committee Unaided Recognised Private Schools, in which a number of private schools are members. The Delhi government on Tuesday had challenged in the HC its single judge order allowing private unaided schools in the national capital to go ahead with the interim hike in fees to implement the recommendations of the Seventh Central Pay Commission on salaries of teachers and other employees. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderThe single judge on March 15 had permitted the interim fee hike by quashing a Delhi government circular of April 13 last year, which had prohibited private unaided schools functioning on government land from hiking tuition amounts without approval of the Directorate of Education (DoE). The government order was selectively applied to private schools which were on government land and as per a ‘land clause’ in the lease agreement, they needed to seek prior approval of the DoE before hiking fees. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsThe division bench on Wednesday said that till April 8, the next date of hearing, none of the ‘land clause’ schools will proceed to collect the interim hiked fee. It also asked the Delhi government to produce on the next date, the orders passed by it on the proposals given by different ‘land clause’ schools for hiking fees. The Delhi government, through its standing counsel Ramesh Singh and additional standing counsel Santosh Kumar Tripathi, said the findings of the single judge that the interim fee hike was perfectly in order in view of an earlier order of the high court is “ex-facie unsustainable”. Seeking to set aside the order of the single judge, the government said the court had erred in holding that no prior approval of DoE was required in case of interim fee hike as the same was not an act of fee increase by the school, but a dispensation by the department itself. “The single judge failed to appreciate the interim fee hike as contemplated in the circular of October 17, 2017 could not have obviated the mandatory requirement of prior approval in DDA land clause cases, even though, the same was a dispensation by the DoE as the said dispensation was merely an interim measure subject to detailed scrutiny and prior approval of the DoE once the accounts of the schools have been scrutinised,” the Delhi government said in its appeal. Meanwhile, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal Wednesday hailed the Delhi High Court’s order staying the interim hike in fees by private unaided schools in the city till April 8. Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia also welcomed the court’s order. “Delhi government, in it audit report of schools that were willing to increase their fees, found that they had excess money than they were spending. Delhi has an honest government which understands the pain of parents. Schools have a right to charge fees according to their expenditure but this government will not allow them to increase their arbitrarily,” he posted on Twitter. Kejriwal tweeted there was anger among parents due to the fee hike but the AAP government appealed in the High Court.last_img read more

Oil hits 5month high above 71 on Libyan supply threat worries


first_imgLONDON: Oil hit a five-month high above $71 a barrel on Tuesday, supported by concern that violence in Libya could further tighten supply, although Russian comments signalling willingness to pump more dampened the rally. Supply curbs led by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries have underpinned a more than 30 per cent rally this year for Brent crude, despite downward pressure from fears of an economic slowdown and weaker demand. Also Read – Thermal coal import may surpass 200 MT this fiscalBrent, the global benchmark, rose to $71.34 a barrel, the highest since November, and by 1046 GMT or 4:16 pm IST was down 3 cents at $71.07. US crude also hit a November 2018 high of $64.79 and was later up 6 cents at $64.46. “The mood is increasingly turning bullish, but several feedback loops are about to start spinning that stand in the way of a prolonged oil rally,” said Norbert Ruecker of Swiss bank Julius Baer. “Russia already signalled its willingness to raise oil output from June. Fuel remains costly in emerging markets, with soft currencies adding to high oil prices.” Russia, a participant in the OPEC-led supply cuts that currently expire in June, signalled on Monday it wanted to raise output when it meets with OPEC because of falling stockpiles. Also Read – Food grain output seen at 140.57 mt in current fiscal on monsoon boostEnergy Minister Alexander Novak said on Tuesday there would be no need to extend the supply-curbing deal if the market was expected to be balanced in the second half of the year. US sanctions on Iran and Venezuela have deepened the OPEC supply cut and concern has grown this week about the stability of Libyan output. The OPEC member pumps around 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd), just over 1 per cent of global supply. “The oil market is already undersupplied, so if supply from Libya also falls away the supply deficit will become even bigger,” said Carsten Fritsch, oil analyst at Commerzbank. On Monday, a warplane attacked Tripoli’s only functioning airport as eastern forces advancing on the Libyan capital disregarded international appeals for a truce. Yet despite generally bullish sentiment, concerns that an economic slowdown this year will hit fuel consumption have been preventing crude prices from rising even higher, traders said. Recent increases in US crude inventories have also put a lid on gains. US crude stocks are forecast to have risen by 2.5 million barrels last week, the third straight weekly addition. The American Petroleum Institute, an industry group, issues its supply report at 2030 GMT, ahead of Wednesday’s official figures.last_img read more

Wilmington Little League Celebrates WHS Senior Riley Zaya


first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — This is the eleventh (and final) in a series of profiles celebrating the former Wilmington Little League’s seniors playing on the Wilmington High School baseball team. Little League’s motto is courage, character, and loyalty. Through playing with and against each other, these student athletes the embodiment of the motto.Riley ZayaThere is always that one kid who, when you watch them they look like they were born to be a ballplayer.  Riley Zaya is that type of kid.  He always seems to be in the right place, is fundamentally sound, and looks like he belongs on the baseball diamond.   He comes from a family of ballplayers and spent a lot of his formative years with his dad and brother at baseball camps, run by the coach of Reading High. He is also the kind of player who would run through a wall for you. He once gutted out an entire game with a sore arm, never letting the coach know so that he could help his team. Riley is a quick witted kid who knows how to keep everyone loose, but also knows when to buckle down and get serious.Riley began his WLL career in Rookie ball playing for the Yellow Jackets, coached by Fred Russell.  Once on the field, his skills and ability were evident to anyone who saw him play.  That first year on the small diamond was filled with many exciting memories.  He remembers getting his first hit, catching his first popup, turning his first double play, and turning a single into a double.   He remembers how much fun it was go to the field, get dirty and play baseball.Drafted by the Indians as a ten year old, he played his first season under Coach Jim Dee. His final two seasons he played for Coach Fred Russell.  The highlight of his Majors career was getting to play one season with his brother Connor.He was selected to play on the All Star tournament team each of his three seasons.  Other memorable moments included pitching a complete game, getting his first hit as a 10 year old,  and turning a game saving double play during a 11 year old All Star tournament game.  He really enjoyed playing for Coach Russell, and helping the Indians to the playoff semifinals during his final year in the Majors.  Riley played on the Indians with future Wildcats Jack Boyle and Jarred Aucoin.  He also always enjoyed marching in the Opening Day parade and hanging with his friends on the outfield fence watching the other teams play their games.Riley finished his WLL career playing two years in Juniors.  Along with the spring teams, he also played for the Jimmy Fund, Pony, and Northeast teams in the summer. He was a valuable contributor to the first Wilmington Middle School team. He helped lead the Wildcats to a 16-5 record and a trip to the semifinals of the playoffs. He also played on the 2016 Northeast team, which was the first Wilmington team to win a Northeast League Division championship.This will be Riley’s second year playing Varsity Baseball for the Wildcats, having competed at the Freshman and JV level for the his first two years. He was a member of the 2017 Middlesex Freedom division championship team last year.  He also played four years on the WHS Soccer team.Riley is thankful for all the years his mother Claire, Father Tom, brother Connor, and sister Mackenzie made the time to see him play. He is grateful to have gotten the opportunity to play that one year in the Majors with his brother.  He is planning on attending the University of New Hampshire in the fall to study business. (NOTE: The above profile is from Wilmington Little League.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWilmington Little League Celebrates WHS Senior Jarred AucoinIn “Sports”Wilmington Little League Celebrates WHS Senior Jack BoyleIn “Sports”Wilmington Little League Celebrates WHS Senior Graham SmithIn “Sports”last_img read more

Protests continue against Rohingya persecution


first_imgNearly 400,000 Rohingyas crossed into Bangladesh from Myanmar in the last three weeks. Photo: UNBDifferent political, social and religious organisations across the country on Thursday staged demonstrations protesting at the persecution of the Rohingya community in Myanmar.In Chandpur, a religious organisation, Bangladesh Chhatra Hizbullah, formed a human-chain at Faridganj in Sadar upazila around 12:00pm protesting at the mass killing, torture and harassment of the Rohingya people in Rakhine.The speakers at the human-chain urged the global Muslim community to lend their helping hand towards the Rohingya refugees.The journalists of Sunamganj Reporters’ Unity held another human-chain at traffic point of Sadar upazila condemning the arson attacks, rapes and barbarism committed by the Myanmar security forces.In Sherpur, different cultural and social organisations held a human-chain at district central Shaheed Minar in Chawkbazar in the afternoon.District human rights commission, Mahila Parishad, Udichi, Rabindra Sangeet Sommilon Parishad, Human Rights Defender Forum, Women Blood Donation Association, Alor Misil and students of different schools and colleges attended the human-chain.In Dinajpur, progressive teachers’ forum of Hajee Mohammad Danesh Science and Technology University formed another human-chain in front of the campus on Dinajpur-Dhaka Highway around 12:00pm.The speakers at the human-chain said Myanmar is trying to eradicate the Rohingya community by committing genocide, rape and arson attack.They also asked the Bangladesh government along with global community to put pressure on the Myanmar Government to take back Rohingyas and provide them national identity.last_img read more

DMCH Ansar member held with Yaba


first_img.Detectives arrested an on-duty Ansar member along with Yaba tablets from Dhaka Medical College Hospital (DMCH) early Monday, reports UNB.The Ansar member was Asad Miah, 35.A team of Detective Branch of Police arrested Asad from the Ansar camp of DMCH around 1:00am along with the Yaba tablets.last_img

RMG workers block road in Dhaka

first_imgRMG workers block Tejgaon`s Saat Rasta intersection road in Dhaka. Photo: Google Map grabTraffic movement in Tejgaon Saat Rasta intersection in the city remained halted for around one and a half hours on Thursday morning as several hundred readymade garment workers put up barricade on the busy street for a hike in their wages, reports UNB.The workers of several RMG factories including those of Standard Group took to the street around 8:00am, creating severe gridlock on Mohakhali-Moghbazar road and its adjoining areas, said Abdul Rashid, officer-in-charge of Tejgaon Industrial Police.The workers of the factories have been staging demonstration for the last couple of days demanding salary hike, he added.The workers took to the street when they found the main gate of a factory closed in the morning.Commuters had to suffer immensely due to the aggravated traffic condition during the rush hour.However, the traffic congestion became normal around 9:30am after police intervention.last_img

With Brady At CPAC Constituents Prepare For Empty Chair Town Hall


first_imgListen X flickr Congressman Kevin Brady fielded questions about tax reform at CPAC, the annual conservative political conference near Washington, D.C., on Friday afternoon. Some constituents had hoped he would attend a town hall before the end of this week’s congressional recess. They’re planning to go ahead with the event, with or without the congressman.Brady attended a town hall in The Woodlands during the last congressional break in January. At the time, he faced occasionally hostile questioning over Republican plans to repeal the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare. Brady, who chairs the House Ways and Means Committee, is one of those leading that effort. A group of Montgomery County residents who attended the January forum arranged another one for this Saturday.“I guess we’ll just have an extended question and answer period with our experts and the people that are there,” says Kevin Thompson of Porter, one of the organizers.Thompson says he hopes the town hall won’t be a purely partisan affair. “If Republicans came, we would love it,” he says, “because they would see the commonalities we all share on like, the Affordable Care Act and Social Security and Medicare and education. You know, cause we all really have a lot more in common that we do differences. It’s just, a lot of times, the shouting gets in the way.”The event is scheduled to take place in Conroe, Saturday morning from 10 a.m. to noon. Share 00:00 /01:09 To embed this piece of audio in your site, please use this code:last_img read more

Political Roundup Remembering Council Member Green And Texas Primary Results


first_img Share Houston City Council members are remembering their colleague, Larry Green, who was found dead yesterday morning. News 88.7’s Andrew Schneider was at City Hall and tells us what Green’s fellow council members had to say about him. He says the mayor will soon call a special election to fill Green’s seat.Then, we recap the results of the Texas Primary Election in detail with political experts Brandon Rottinghaus from the University of Houston and co-host of Houston Public Media’s Party Politics podcast and Mark Jones from Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy.last_img

Libertarians Independents And WriteIns Here Are Texas NonMajor Party Options in 2018


first_imgBob Daemmrich for The Texas TribuneA “vote” sign in a yard in west Austin on March 6, 2018.Today’s Texplainer question was inspired by reader Karen.Hey, Texplainer: I don’t like the Republicans or Democrats running in 2018. What are my other choices?For Texans who aren’t fans of either of the nation’s two major parties, writing in a random person — or meteor — may sound appealing. (Yes, voters in 2016 cast ballots for Giant Meteor, Deez Nutz, Oprah Winfrey, Harambe or just left a somber message like “America U R Broken.”)No, those votes don’t count. But you still do have some real options besides the chosen Democrats and Republicans.Third party candidatesTexas Libertarians have fielded a candidate in nearly every statewide race this election season, according to Mark Tippetts, the party’s nominee for governor. A full list of the Libertarians that will be on the ballot this fall can be found on the party’s website.In order to get their candidates on the general election ballot without a petition, third parties must have at least one candidate win more than 5 percent of the vote in a statewide race during the previous election cycle. Libertarian petroleum engineer Mark Miller barely cleared that hurdle for his party in 2016, winning 5.3 percent of the vote in the race against Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian.“We’ve maintained ballot access throughout the state by running candidates and getting the percentages needed,” Tippetts said. “It is a really good feeling to have ballot access and it really takes away the argument of the Democrats and Republicans that they are the only ones you can vote for.”Despite enthusiasm from the state’s only third party to clinch ballot access this year, a Libertarian has never won a statewide race in Texas. According to Tippetts, however, winning an election this fall isn’t the only goal. Rather, he hopes to prove that third parties can compete against the nation’s two major parties and have at least one Libertarian statewide candidate earn enough votes to ensure they’ll be on the ballot again in 2020.“We must maintain ballot access and we have enough statewide candidates running that I think we should be able to do that,” Tippett said. “We believe we have the best platform and the best principles, but we also realize a party grows little by little and our intent is to keep the party going and maintain ballot access.”Independent candidatesCandidates unaffiliated with a political party are allowed access to the general election ballot as long as they file the necessary paperwork and gather a certain number of signatures — depending on the office sought — from people who didn’t attend either the Republican or Democratic party conventions this year or vote in either party’s primary.“It’s up to their personal campaign on how they want to portray themselves [but] when you’re an independent, you haven’t attended the convention of another party,” said Sam Taylor, a spokesman for the secretary of state’s office.Independent candidates were required to register with the appropriate office by June 21. This year, eight candidates are registered as independents — seven in congressional races and another vying for a state House seat. None are running for statewide office. Independent U.S. Senate candidate Jonathan Jenkins missed the filing deadline for the November ballot.Here’s the full list of independent candidates: Ben Mendoza in El Paso’s 16th Congressional District. Benjamin Hernandez and Kesha Rogers in Houston’s 9th Congressional District. Scott Cubbler in the 2nd Congressional District in the Houston area. James Duerr in Texas’ 27th Congressional District along Texas’ Gulf Coast. Kellen Sweny in the Houston area’s 22nd Congressional District.center_img Write-in candidatesFive parties in Texas made an effort this year to get November ballot access — America’s Party of Texas, the Christian Party of Texas, the Green Party of Texas, None of the Above and the Texas Independent Party. However, none of the parties secured the nearly 50,000 valid signatures needed for ballot access this fall.There’s a last-ditch effort these parties can utilize, however: filing a declaration of write-in candidacy. The window to file declarations opened on July 21 and will close Aug. 20, Taylor said.As of Friday, Taylor said, only one candidate had filed a nominating petition: Samuel Lee Williams Jr. (who will appear on the ballot as Sam Williams). According to his campaign filing, Williams is running as a candidate for the Independent Party against Democrat Veronica Escobar and Republican Rick Seeberger in the race fill the U.S. House seat that’s being vacated by Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso.But don’t be surprised if more write-ins file to get on the ballot over the next several weeks. Jan Richards, a Green Party of Texas candidate for governor, told The Texas Tribune she plans to send her paperwork to the secretary of state’s office in the final days leading up to the declaration deadline — but first she said she needs to collect the $3,750 needed to be eligible as a write-in. She said she wasn’t aware of other candidates in her party that planned on doing the same.“My own platform represents the needs of a large number of Texans,” Richards said. “There’s a huge number of people who could be served by a candidate like me. What I’m trying to accomplish is talking about issues relevant to people — like education, universal healthcare and workplace improvement.”Andy Prior, the former state chairman for America’s Party of Texas who’s the party’s nominee for land commissioner, also said he’s considering filing paperwork to be an eligible write-in. According to its website, America’s Party supports a pro-life and pro-liberty platform.“I plan on making a final decision probably this week, which would give me two weeks to get everything done that would be necessary,” Prior said.Spokespeople for the Christian Party of Texas, None of the Above and Texas Independent Party did not immediately respond to requests for comment regarding their plans for the November election.The bottom line: For Texans who don’t want to vote for either the Democrat or Republican on the ballot, there are other options available. Libertarians fielded a candidate in nearly every statewide race this year, and there are eight eligible independent candidates running. Neal Katz, in Texas House District 6 in Tyler. Martin Luecke in Texas’ 25th Congressional District, which spans from Fort Worth to Austin. Sharelast_img read more

IATA posts Agents Handbook


first_imgSource = e-Travel Blackboard: N.J International Air Transport Association is putting agents in the loop, releasing its current edition of the Travel Agent’s Handbook (TAH) online.With information effective from 1 June this year, each handbook contains the Passenger Agency Conference decisions covering practices and industry regulations. Australian Federation of Travel Agents chief executive Jayson Westbury noted that in this manual all Local Criteria has been shifted to Section 3.“IATA has also posted to the website the updated BSP Manual for Agents 2011, information on ITDI’s new e-learning courses for Agents and the latest information on IATA’s e-Services,” Mr Westbury said. “Also, there is nothing of a significant nature that impacts the Australian BSP in this update, but for the purpose of having the latest information on record, you may find it worthwhile reading through the updated handbook.”last_img read more

Vivendibacked telco and IPTV provider SFR has lau


first_imgVivendi-backed telco and IPTV provider SFR has launched two quad-play offerings.SFR, which launched its Multi-Packs offering in 2010, has added two ‘special editions’. The first offers quad-play with unlimited fixed and mobile phone calls in France and unlimited fixed calls to 100 international destinations, including 170 TV channels with an option to take 200 more, and TV and video-on-demand, from €55.90 a month. The second offering, for €69.90, includes international mobile calls.last_img

Gary Alfonso Fox Networks Group has hired a former


first_imgGary AlfonsoFox Networks Group has hired a former senior CNBC executive to become general manager of a restructured African operation.Gary Alfonso will lead FNG Africa,taking control of sub-Sahara operations for the broadcast group and sister business National Geographic Partners.In Africa, FNG operates pay TV networks Fox, FX, FoxCrime, Fox Sports, National Geographic, Nat Geo Wild, Nat Geo Gold and BabyTV.Nami Patel and Makhosazana Khanyile have also landed senior roles in a rejigged FNG operation, Patel is promoted from VP, business development, Europe and Africa, to CFO, UK and Africa, while FNG Africa marketing head Khanyile has been named director of sales and marketing.New chief Alfonso has worked in broadcasting for almost three decades. He joins from Nigeria-based broadcaster Gotel Communications, where he was COO, and was previously managing director of CNBC Africa and GM of Summit TV.“Our genre defining brands are market leaders in Africa, delivering year on year growth over the past three years,” said Adam Theiler, FNG’s executive VP, Nordics, Turkey, Greece, Israel and Africa.“Gary’s 29 years of leading industry experience will continue to drive our success, evolving our businesses to meet the changing media landscape as we bring the best in entertainment, factual and sports programming to audiences across the continent.”Alfonso, who will report to Theiler, said: “Working with the highly talented team in the FNG Africa office, I look forward to helping the business increase its regional footprint, in a challenging and dynamic media environment.”The news comes soon after Theiler tweaked FNG management in Turkey, promoting Cenk Soner and Mehmet Icagasioglu to new top-level positions.It is also the latest change at FNG Europe and Africa, which came into being in January with the 21st Century Fox-owned networks business dropped its Fox International Channels moniker and said goodbye to long-serving international chief Hernan Lopez in the process.last_img read more