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NEWS SCAN: H5N1 cases in Egypt, virus-sharing impasse, NYC’s new health commissioner

first_imgMay 18, 2009Egypt reports two new H5N1 cases, one fatalEgypt’s health ministry recently reported two new H5N1 avian influenza cases in young children, one of them fatal, according reports from Strengthening Avian Influenza Detection and Response (SAIDR). A 4-year-old girl with a history of contact with sick poultry died from her infection today at a hospital in Dakahliya governorate. She got sick on May 9 and was hospitalized May 17. The second case involved a 3-year-old boy from Gharbia governorate. He got sick on May 12, was hospitalized on May 15, and was listed in good condition. His family said the boy had contact with sick poultry. If the World Health Organization confirms the cases, they will be listed as Egypt’s 71st and 72nd cases, with the girl’s death marking the country’s 27th fatality. In other developments, the WHO on May 15 confirmed an H5N1 infection ion a 5-year-old girl from Sohag governorate. She became ill on May 7, was hospitalized 2 days later, and remains in stable condition. On the same day the WHO also noted the deaths of three previously confirmed case-patients from Egypt: a 6-year-old by from Qaliobia governorate, a 33-year-old woman from Kafr el Sheikh governorate, and a 25-year-old woman from Cairo governorate. The WHO confirmations raise the global H5N1 total to 424 cases, 261 of them fatal.[May 15 WHO statement]WHO virus-sharing meeting ends without agreementAn intergovernmental group convened by the World Health Organization (WHO) met in Geneva on May 15 and 16 but did not complete an agreement to share influenza virus samples and vaccines, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported yesterday. In a statement, the group said they reached an agreement on most elements of the “pandemic influenza preparedness framework for sharing of influenza viruses and access to vaccines and other benefits.” The unresolved issues are sharing of data between laboratories and intellectual property rights relating to viruses. The dispute over virus-sharing began in December 2006 when Indonesia, the nation hardest hit by the H5N1 virus, stopped sending samples to the WHO to protest the high cost of vaccines made by pharmaceutical companies from the isolates the country provided. Since then, the intergovernmental group has met several times but has not forged a final agreement. At the last meeting, in December 2008, the group asked Margaret Chan, WHO director general, to help them flesh out a traceability mechanism, set terms of reference for WHO collaborating centers, revise a material transfer agreement, and outline needs and priorities for benefits such as vaccine stockpiles and financing. Chan’s office published a report on the four tasks, dated Apr 30, in advance of the recent meeting.[Apr 30 WHO director-general’s report on virus sharing issues]New York City names new health commissionerMayor Michael Bloomberg announced today that Dr. Thomas Farley, a pediatrician and epidemiologist from Louisiana, will head the city’s health department. He will replace Dr. Thomas Frieden, who was named this week by President Barack Obama as the new director of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Reuters reported. Farley heads the Department of Community Health Sciences and the Prevention Research Center at Tulane University in Louisiana but has worked as a senior advisor to Frieden since 2007. He will step into his new position in June. Farley said today that his top priority would be handling novel H1N1 influenza issues, but he also intends to continue Frieden’s fight against obesity and smoking. Farley.[May 18 Reuters story]last_img read more

Amazon Announces Plans to Open New Delivery Station in Boca Raton

first_imgOnline retailer Amazon announced Wednesday that it plans to open a new delivery station in south Palm Beach County later this year.Amazon Logistics, the company’s delivery service, has signed “various leases” in an effort to open the delivery facility in Boca Raton.The new station will expedite deliveries for customers in the Boca Raton area, according to the company.Delivery stations allow “Amazon Logistics to supplement capacity and flexibility to Amazon’s delivery capabilities,” the company added in a written statement.Hundreds of full-time and part-time jobs, paying a minimum of $15 per hour with benefits, will be available.last_img read more

ODDS-ON FAVORITE VALE DORI CRUISES BY 2 ½ LENGTHS IN GRADE II, $200,000 LA CANADA STAKES; SMITH & BAFFERT TEAM TO GET 1 1/16 MILES IN 1:44.95

first_imgARCADIA, Calif. (Jan. 14, 2017)–Sent from her inside post from the outset, heavily favored Vale Dori took no prisoners as she waltzed gate to wire to a 2 ½ length win under Mike Smith in Saturday’s Grade II, $200,000 La Canada Stakes at Santa Anita.  Trained by Bob Baffert, the newly turned 5-year-old Argentine-bred mare notched her third consecutive win as she negotiated a mile and one sixteenth over a main track listed as “good” in 1:44.95.With second choice Wild At Heart in close attendance down the backside, Smith called upon Vale Dori approaching the three furlong pole and opened up immediately, making the La Canada a race for the minor placings at that point.“It’s important to have her versatility,” said Smith.  “I think she’s got to the point where she’s not a one dimensional horse and I think she’d even sit off of someone now if they wanted to get crazy…I look for her to do some great things.  She’s got a long year ahead of her and hopefully she won’t run into my other big mare (Jerry Hollendorfer’s Songbird) and I get to ride them both.”Owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Khalifa al Maktoum, Vale Dori, who was making her sixth start for Baffert in Southern California, came off an impressive three length win in the Grade II Bayakoa Handicap at Del Mar Dec. 3 and she now has four wins in combination with Baffert.Off at 1-5 in a field of five older fillies and mares, she paid $2.60, $2.10 and $2.10.  (With $632,101 out of the total show pool of $682,814 bet on her, Vale Dori created a minus show pool of $119,663).“She’s come a long way,” said Baffert.  “It was tough to get a bridle on her before.  She was tough.  She’s improving, we see it.  I’m just glad she’s doing well.  We’ll get her ready for the big guns.  I wonder if Mike will stay on her (laughing).”Trainer Art Sherman’s Show Stealer, next to last going into the far turn, picked up the pieces and ran second, some 7 ½ lengths clear of Autumn Flower.Ridden by Tyler Baze, Show Stealer was off at 13-1 and paid  $5.80 and $3.40.Autumn Flower, who was ridden by Drayden Van Dyke, was content to lag well back in last, but kept to her task through the drive, as she came up the rail to finish third by a half length.Off at 20-1, Autumn Flower paid $5.00 to show.Fractions on the race were 23.63, 47.58, 1:12.43 and 1:38.37.First post time for a nine-race card on Sunday at Santa Anita is at 12:30 p.m.  Admission gates open at 10:30 a.m.last_img read more

Palmdale man shot to death at his home

first_imgPALMDALE – A Palmdale man was found shot to death Monday evening in his home, sheriff’s officials said Tuesday. Frank Luna, 50, was found by his wife, dying from a gunshot wound shortly after neighbors called the Palmdale sheriff’s station, reporting that they heard gunfire, officials said. The shooting was at 8 p.m. in the 12000 block of East Avenue Q. Paramedics summoned to the home pronounced Luna dead on the scene. Sheriff’s homicide detectives are investigating. Assuming that the case is ruled a homicide, it would be the third such reported in the Antelope Valley this year and the first in Palmdale. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Tax Overhaul Keeps Breaks for Wind and Solar

first_imgOne reason that existing solar and wind incentives will continue, according to The New York Times, is the rising influence of the renewables industry, even among Republicans. Charles Grassley of Iowa and Dean Heller of Nevada, for example, both objected to the rollback of incentives in the House bill. Grassley may not be convinced that global warming is a problem, but Iowa gets more than one-third of its electricity from wind turbines. Heller’s home state is where Tesla is building a giant factory to make batteries for its electric vehicles.Wind and solar together accounted for about 6.5% of all U.S. electricity in 2016, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.“As wind and solar projects have soared in the U.S., in both red and blue states, so has the industry’s influence in Washington, D.C., on both sides of the aisle,” Dan W. Reicher, director of the Center for Energy Policy and Finance at Stanford, told The Times. Expired tax credits lower salesUntil the end of 2016, consumers could take advantage of federal tax credits for energy-related improvements made to their primary homes, including heating and cooling equipment, water heaters, windows, and insulation. Those benefits have expired.Ground-source heat pumps (also called geothermal systems) had been eligible for the 30% credit, and the industry experienced a sharp decline in sales after it expired. Manufacturers were encouraged by an early version of the tax bill in the House of Representatives, which restored the credit and made it retroactive to the beginning of 2017. But in the end, the provision was not included.“It was a kick in the pants,” said Ryan Dougherty, the chief operating officer of Geo Exchange, the trade group representing the ground-source heat pump industry in the U.S.Along with other “orphan technologies” like fuel cells and small wind, the industry has been left behind, despite what Dougherty said was support from a “broad coalition” of Democrats and Republicans in Congress.The 30% tax credit was especially useful for heat pump manufacturers because it made the relatively expensive systems competitive with other HVAC options, Dougherty said by phone. When the credits were no longer available, sales fell by as much as 50%. Allowing tax credits to expire amounted to the government telling consumers the “technology is not worth your money,” he said. “It’s leaving the little guys behind. Our industry is the little guys.”Mike Bergey, president and CEO of Bergey Wind Power, a manufacturer of small wind turbines, expressed similar views. The loss of tax incentives was “pretty devastating,” he said in a call, and “completely killed” the company’s residential market. Loss of sales persuaded many of Bergey’s mom-and-pop distributors to begin selling PV modules instead of wind turbines, and rebuilding the retail network won’t be easy.Bergey found the disparity between continued tax credits for PV modules that are largely made overseas and the lack of any credit for residential wind turbine buyers in the U.S. disturbing. “It’s just not a good narrative,” he said.A sliver of good news for the small wind industry, however, is a continuing tax credit for small commercial customers, such as ranches and farms. That credit is 24% this year and will drop by 6 points per year until it’s gone. That appears to be untouched in the new tax bill. Some concerns remainOne sour note for environmentalists is the provision that will open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil drilling. Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski and other Republicans have been pressing for the change for years and argue it can be done without harming the 19.6 million-acre refuge, what has been described as one of the most pristine regions in the U.S. Democrats have fought the move.Another sticking point for renewable energy advocates was the Base Erosion Anti-Abuse Tax (BEAT), a provision designed to prevent big corporations from moving their profits overseas to avoid federal taxes.The American Council on Renewable Energy had warned in November that BEAT would have “a devastating if unintended impact” on the solar and wind industries by undermining the use of renewable energy tax credits to pay for new projects.The final version of the bill, Greentech Media said, lets corporations continue using the Investment Tax Credit and the Production Tax Credit to lower taxable income, although at a lower rates.BEAT is not something, however, that residential renewable energy customers are going to spend much time worrying about. (For a detailed explainer on how BEAT works, read this.) The tax overhaul passed this week by Congress leaves tax breaks for solar and utility-scale wind projects in place, but does not restore tax credits for ground-source heat pumps and small wind turbines as those two “orphan technologies” had hoped. The Associated Press reports that the $1.5 trillion package does nothing to change tax credits for the wind and solar industries. Under terms of a bill passed in 2015, the incentives for utility-scale wind run through 2020 and solar benefits until 2022.The bill also includes a tax credit of up to $7,500 for plug-in vehicles, despite earlier attempts in the House to kill it. (If you’re interested in wading through the 560 pages of the bill, you can find it here.)Of key importance to homeowners is survival of the 30% federal Investment Tax Credit (ITC) for photovoltaic (PV) systems and solar hot water systems. The ITC will drop to 26% in 2020 and 22% in 2021. After that, the residential credit drops to zero while the commercial and utility credit goes to 10% permanently, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association.While the solar industry benefits, the bill does nothing to restore tax credits that would have helped manufacturers of small wind turbines and ground-source heat pumps — a bitter pill for both of those industries. Still a ‘glimmer of hope’Dougherty sees a “glimmer of hope” in a House bill sponsored by Tom Reed, a New York Republican, that would restore tax credits for geothermal and small wind systems. But, Dougherty said, Congress is unlikely to consider stand-alone bills — that is, bills with a single purpose rather than proposals that become part of omnibus legislation — and the chance of passage at the moment looks “slim to none.”“It’s not that heavy a lift,” he said of the bill’s $2.3 billion price tag over five years. “It won’t break the bank.”But the situation appears fluid. Dougherty and Bergey were hoping to get language to restore the credits into an “extender bill” for the federal budget that could be considered in January. Bergey said he understands there’s interest in that approach, and its chance of approval could be as high as 60%.“These are tough times,” he said. “We’ve seen tough times before. We’ll come out of this OK.” RELATED ARTICLES Tax Bill Would Deal a Blow to RenewablesDeciphering the Tax Creditslast_img read more

City taking action against five properties with illegal suites on 109A Street

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – A motion was carried at Monday’s Council meeting authorizing City staff to file Bylaw Contravention Notices on five properties on 109A Street in the Sunset Ridge neighbourhood of Fort St. John.The notices have been put onto the titles of the properties, which are all located in the same block of 109A Street between 105th and 108th Avenues, under Section 57 of the Community Charter.The notices were issued to the following five properties: Jackson added in her report that to date, no applications have been received nor have the owners contacted the City with regard to the bylaw contraventions.This is the second instance of the City issuing notices on property titles for secondary suite bylaw contraventions.In July, notices were issued against six properties in three duplexes located on 77th Street, 101st Avenue, and 104A Avenue.The City’s Planning Manager Renee Jamurat said then that the Bylaw Contravention Notice on the properties’ titles mean that the current and future owners of the properties will be made aware of the issues. 10611 109A Street; PID Number 029-142-27010612 109A Street; PID Number 029-142-42310615 109A Street; PID Number 029-142-28810703 109A Street; PID Number 029-142-29610708 109A Street; PID Number 029-142-393. A house at 10611 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10611 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10612 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10612 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10615 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10615 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10703 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10703 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10708 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A house at 10708 109A Street that has had a bylaw contravention notice issued for an illegal secondary suite. Photo by Chris Newton A building permit was issued for one of the five single-family detached homes in November 2013, while the other four were all approved on November 19, 2014.Final inspections of the five homes were conducted between May 22, 2014, and November 16, 2015, with occupancy being granted to each home on the same day as their inspections.In her report, Planner Charlene Jackson said that complaints were filed with the City on April 26th, April 30th, May 4th and May 8th of this year against the five properties.Jackson said that in each case, the City requested to schedule a secondary suite inspection via a registered letter sent on June 19th, with a deadline to contact the City to schedule an inspection of July 22nd.On July 27th, a second notice was sent informing the Owner that, under Section 57 of the Community Charter, the Building Inspectors were recommending that a notice be registered on the title.center_img She said that though titles have been issued for the properties, the City won’t be taking the approach of getting property owners to have the illegal suites removed.last_img read more

Jhoot boot campaign on by BJP says Akhilesh

first_imgLucknow: Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav on Thursday asked the BJP whether it was pursuing a “jhoot and boot” campaign, a day after the party was embarrassed by its two legislators who attacked each other during a meeting, with one of them using his shoe.By “jhoot” (lies), Yadav appeared to be referring to the multi-crore Rafale aircraft deal, which the Opposition has alleged involved corruption. His comments came a day after the BJP-led government at the Centre told the Supreme Court that documents related to the agreement had been “stolen” from the Defence Ministry. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity!”First there were parallel negotiations. Then the (Rafale) files were stolen. Meanwhile in Uttar Pradesh, MP-MLA used shoes for dispute resolution at a meeting to discuss development. Now BJP workers are asking their leaders as to what campaign is on? The ‘jhoot’ and the ‘boot’ or the youth and the booth?” Yadav said in Lucknow. His “boot” dig was aimed at the fracas in Sant Kabir Nagar, where two elected representatives of the BJP hit each other during a meeting in presence of minister of in-charge of the district, Ashutosh Tandon, son of Bihar Governor Lalji Tandon. Also Read – Encounter under way in Pulwama, militant killedOne of the legislators involved in the fight, caught on tape, used his shoe to hit the other. On Thursday, Yadav’s ally in Uttar Pradesh for the general election, BSP chief Mayawati, too had a dig at the Centre’s disclosure about “stolen” Rafale jet deal documents. Mayawati said in a tweet it was a “very strange and irresponsible chowkidari” that the documents were “stolen”. “The Modi govt made a sensational disclosure in the Hon’ble Supreme Court that secret documents pertaining to Rafale fighter deal were stolen from the Defence Ministry.” ‘Very strange & irresponsible chowkidari. Is national security & interest in the safe hands? Think long & loud,” she tweeted. Later in a statement, she said it was “most irresponsible, most unfortunate and shameful” that Rafale deal-related documents were stolen from the ministry. She asked the Modi government to apologise for failing on the matter of national security. “Before making the stunning revelations (about documents being stolen) in the Supreme Court, the Narendra Modi government ought to have apologised to the nation for failing on the matter of national security,” the BSP chief said in the statement. She said the Supreme Court should now get the entire matter probed under its supervision to satisfy the country.last_img read more

What Pat Summitt Did For The Game Of Basketball

Embed Code FiveThirtyEight If you’re a fan of our podcasts, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and leave a rating/review. That helps spread the word to other listeners. And get in touch by email, on Twitter or in the comments. Tell us what you think, send us hot takes to discuss and tell us why we’re wrong. Welcome to the latest episode of Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight’s sports podcast. On this week’s show (June 28, 2016), we discuss legendary women’s basketball coach Pat Summitt, who died Tuesday. Kate Fagan describes what she meant to generations of young women desperate to play the sport. Then, The Wall Street Journal’s Chris Herring joins us to chat about the trade of Derrick Rose to the New York Knicks, and we wonder why the Knicks never seem to acquire quality talent. Finally, Chris sticks around to talk about this year’s NBA free agents and whether the Golden State Warriors would be set up for an 82-0 season if they got Kevin Durant. Plus, a significant digit on Buddy Ryan, the NFL defensive coordinator who helped lead the New York Jets and the Chicago Bears to Super Bowl titles. He died Tuesday at the age of 85.Links to what we discuss are here:Kate Fagan tells us what Pat Summitt meant to her and generations of women basketball players.Neil Paine dives into the numbers that show Summitt built the best women’s college basketball program of all time.Gary Smith’s 1998 profile of Summitt in Sports Illustrated looks at her through the eyes of a 16-year-old college basketball prospect.In 2012, Dave Zirin asked in The Nation: Are we brave enough to say goodbye to Pat Summitt?Chris Herring wonders how Derrick Rose will fit in with the Knicks.Chris also writes that the Knicks are setting their sights on Kevin Durant now that Rose is on board.But Matt Borcas at The Ringer thinks Durant will never go to the Knicks.Neil Paine thinks a Durant-led Thunder will be a better team without Serge Ibaka.The Washington Post’s Neil Greenberg agrees.Significant Digit: 72. That’s the number of sacks Buddy Ryan’s 1984 Bears put up — the most in a single NFL season. More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed read more

Real Madrids plan to protect Vinicius Junior

first_imgAfter the fiasco against Atletico Madrid during last week’s Third Division match, Real Madrid has come up with a new plan to protect Vinicius Junior.Last week’s match between Real Madrid Castilla and Atletico Madrid B, was a clear red flag in regards to Brazilian winger Vinicius Junior. The Flamengo product needed to make a great impression on his second match with the academy because he failed to score any goals during the first match, pressure started mounting on him and this was the game in which he needed to make an appearance. The reaction to all the criticism from Vinny was quick, he gave an incredible performance in which he scored two amazing goals and led Real Madrid Castilla to a draw against the young Colchoneros. But there was also a very negative note about his match, it was clear that Vinicius awakened a lot of envy on all of his rivals and they Atletico players dedicated the whole match to provocations against the player and rough tackles. This is something that will become more repetitive on the Third Division for the Brazilian, which is something that manager Julen Lopetegui quickly realized after watching last week’s game.O atirador! Bob lee Swagger ?? pic.twitter.com/iKQ6h9bg6e— Vinicius Jr (@vini11Oficial) September 2, 2018This Wednesday there was an emergency meeting between the boss and Real Madrid Castilla’s coach, Santiago Solari. They spoke about the schedule of games in which Vinicius will feature for the academy, they reached an agreement in which the winger won’t travel to any game away from the Alfredo di Stefano Stadium in Valdebebas for his own protection. Solari completely understood this because Vinicius is a player who is well above the Third Division level, it is only a matter of time before Lopetegui takes him to the major squad on a full-time basis and the Argentine Castilla coach knows that having him in a few games for his squad is already a great luxury that will help his team win more matches. The Real Madrid staff quickly saw the danger that Vinicius would go through if he played in other Third Division stadiums because it’s not the same playing against other academies than against professional clubs that want to obtain promotion.Brinque com ela ⚽️ … pic.twitter.com/cDiaQnILoc— Vinicius Jr (@vini11Oficial) September 5, 2018Sergio Ramos, Real MadridZidane reveals Sergio Ramos injury concern for Real Madrid Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane has put Sergio Ramos’ availability for Real Madrid’s trip to Sevilla next weekend in doubt after withdrawing him against Levante.Vinicius as part of the Champions League squad.The Brazilian winger actually took the whole biting attempt from the Atletico Madrid player very lightly, he even accepted an apology after the game and both players hugged it out. The Flamengo product is cut from the same cloth as Neymar, he knows that fouls are something that will accompany him for the rest of his career because of the style of football he loves playing. These types of players usually get very obsessed with new flicks and tricks during practice that they can later produce in an official match, this creativity is always rewarded and that’s why manager Julen Lopetegui has already included Vinicius Junior amongst the players who form the roster for this year’s Champions League. This will obviously be the player’s first opportunity to compete in such a prestigious tournament, this is the stage for which players like him were made and he has been training his ass off for years in order to get an opportunity like this one.?? ¡El equipo trabaja en #RMCity sin los jugadores convocados por sus selecciones! | #HalaMadrid pic.twitter.com/B5k4acO8w7— Real Madrid C.F. (@realmadrid) September 3, 2018During the international break, Vinicius Junior is already under Julen Lopetegui’s command and he will keep working hard this next two weeks with the hope of soon getting that first call-up for any La Liga match that will come after the national team matches this weekend. Protecting this €45 million player has suddenly become a top priority for Real Madrid, Lopetegui had his doubts about the kid but this last match against Atletico cleared all of them. There is no question that Vinicius will get his chance to shine this season, it’s up to him to cease the opportunity before management decides to send him on a loan to another club from Madrid where he can grow even more as a player. Sending him to another La Liga club is not actually a bad idea, this is something that is also being discussed for Vinicius’ most immediate future but a decision hasn’t been made yet on this subject. We’ll have to wait and see what happens this season.?¡IMAGEN EXCLUSIVA!? Vinicius y Tachi SE ABRAZARON tras el DERBI entre Real Madrid Castilla y Atleti B. Ahora, con @alexsilvestreSZ en #ElChiringuitoDeMega pic.twitter.com/ba65YWfhSu— El Chiringuito TV (@elchiringuitotv) September 4, 2018What do you think is the best option for Vinicius’ most immediate future, keep playing for Real Madrid Castilla or leave on a loan? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.last_img read more