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first_imgSMSDALBANY – New York State’s Teachers Union is calling for a waiver of testing mandates amid the novel Coronavirus outbreak.The teachers are asking U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos to waive state testing mandates for children in grades 3-8 for the rest of this school year and the duration of the coronavirus pandemic as New York schools are shut down to help stem the spread of the virus.“This is not the time to create more stress for our kids,” NYSUT President Andy Pallotta said in a statement Wednesday. “It is critical that the federal government step up now and waive mandated state testing for all kids for the rest of this school year and the duration of this crisis.”NYSUT says they’ve been working with the state Education Department and state Board of Regents to ensure that the federal government waives testing mandates and that no school is penalized. The union believes that even if schools do re-open in several weeks, students would have dramatically less preparation time for the tests, putting them at a significant disadvantage and radically skewing the results. Even worse, considering the pervasive unease and uncertainty that this global pandemic has created, it simply isn’t fair or prudent to create more stress and anxiety for our students, NYSUT says.NYSUT is urging its members to contact DeVos and the U.S. Department of Education to tell them to waive mandated testing for the rest of this school year and the duration of this crisis. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)last_img read more

first_img Show Closed This production ended its run on Sept. 4, 2016 Les Miserables View Comments Do not forget his name! Earl Carpenter will return to the Broadway revival of Claude-Michel Schönberg and Alain Boublil’s Les Miserables as Javert on May 12 replacing Will Swenson, who is set to depart the production on May 10. Carpenter previously stepped into the role while Swenson went on hiatus for Bull Durham last summer.Carpenter also appeared as Javert in the Toronto production of Les Miz opposite Tony nominee Ramin Karimloo as Valjean. He began his West End career in Les Miz at the Palace Theatre in 1996, as Courfeyrac. In 2008 he played the part of Javert at the Queens Theatre and then in the 25th Anniversary U.K tour. He was then the Bishop of Digne at London’s O2 Arena concert in 2010. Other West End, UK and European stage credits include The Phantom of the Opera, Evita, We Will Rock You, Zorro, Sunset Boulevard, Beauty and the Beast, The Secret Garden, The Merry Widow, Between the Lines and The Witches of Eastwick.Directed by James Powell and Laurence Connor, the newly reimagined production is playing at the Imperial Theatre. The current cast includes Karimloo as Valjean, Samantha Hill as Cosette, Chris McCarrell as Marius, Wallace Smith as Enjolras, Erika Henningsen as Fantine, Brennyn Lark as Eponine, Gavin Lee as Thenardier and Rachel Izen as Madame Thenardier.As previously reported, Swenson will appear opposite his wife, six-time Tony winner Audra McDonald, in A Moon for the Misbegotten at Williamstown beginning August 5. Related Showslast_img read more

Microgin

January 17, 2021 | bqfdduvy | No Comments

first_imgThe microgin at the University of Georgia Tifton Campus may be small, but it makes a huge impact.The microgin is an integral part of the UGA Cotton Team’s efforts to produce improved Georgia cotton, a crop that exceeded $713 million in farm gate value in 2015. Kane Staines, research gin manager at UGA Tifton, said the quantity of cotton produced is important, but it is secondary in relation to the quality of Georgia-produced cotton.“The idea behind the microgin was to have a real-world way of processing small cotton samples from research plots. Georgia had been experiencing significant economic losses due to poor-quality cotton during that time, and the industry pulled together to address the issue,” Staines said. “In 2003, UGA scientists and the Georgia Cotton Commission, with input from the Southeastern Cotton Ginners Association, the Southern Cotton Growers Inc. and the private sector, developed a plan to build the facility.”Staines said he looks at various quality factors during the ginning process – micronaire, staple length and uniformity of fibers – among other qualities that are important to textile mills.Gin turnout, which is the weight ratio of lint to seed in cotton, is the primary factor in determining how much lint is produced. Some factors, such as moisture in the cotton, trash content, irrigation and the cotton variety, can affect gin turnout.“The cotton comes from a field plot, and after it is ginned and cleaned, we weigh the lint,” Staines said. “We then do some simple math to determine the percent gin turnout. Fiber samples are graded, usually by the United States Department of Agriculture classing office in Macon, (Georgia), or Cotton Incorporated.”Staines said that many UGA researchers send cotton samples to the microgin.“Researchers such as entomologists, agronomists, plant pathologists and many others submit samples to the gin,” Staines said. “After I look at the quality and quantity of the cotton, then I send the data back to the researchers. They look at one treatment versus the other to see if there are correlations or differences from treatment to treatment.” The microgin at UGA Tifton has the same size profile as a commercial gin, but it has only a tenth of the commercial gin’s production capabilities. Staines said the gin operates just like a normal gin.“Modern cotton gins like ours put the seed cotton through a series of precleaning machines,” Staines said. “These machines get all or most of the trash out of the cotton before it ever gets to the actual gin stand. Once the cotton passes through the gin stand and the seed is removed, the lint goes through another series of cleanings.”Staines said the microgin, like all gins, produces waste, including the cotton seed and gin trash, which consists of sticks, burs, fragments of leaves and anything that’s not cotton or seed. Seed is either crushed for oil or used for livestock feed. Trash is often used as a soil amendment.Staines said the ginning season is usually determined by the weather, which dictates the duration of the harvesting season.“If we have a really rainy season, the farmers can’t harvest and the ginning season will run into February or March,” Staines said. “Usually, the microgin starts running around mid- to late September, and it continues until the end of December. In a good year, the ginning season lasts about four or five months.”last_img read more

The Destruction of Narco Airstrips in Honduras

December 20, 2020 | bqfdduvy | No Comments

first_imgBy Dialogo March 05, 2015 La Mosquitia is located in the easternmost part of Honduras along the Mosquito Coast and is known for its lush rainforests and diverse indigenous populations. Cut-off from urban society, this region extends across 32,500 square meters, has few roads, and is best accessed by air and water routes. In spite of its difficult access by land, its location is geographically perfect for receiving aerial drug shipments from countries in South America, which is why the area is home to more than 200 clandestine airstrips, as reported by Honduran newspaper El Heraldo. In fact, the same source reports that nearly 79 percent of all narco flights originating in South American countries use the Mosquito Coast as a drop-off point for cocaine shipments. Future Operations? In a perfect world, bombing a single airstrip would be enough to impede traffickers from rebuilding in the area, but this not true here, since they consider those airstrips essential for operations and quickly move to rebuild them. El Heraldo reported on a popular strip in Brus Laguna that was bombed by Honduran authorities on three separate occasions last year. If the traffickers plan on rebuilding a bombed airstrip, they generally allow the ground to settle for a few days before doing so. At that point, hundreds of workers are hired to work during the night to meticulously repair the holes and ensure a smooth landing strip. Site Preparation Operation Morazán will continue in 2015, according to Honduran authorities. In fact, two clandestine airstrips have already been destroyed in the Brus Laguna sector of Gracias a Dios since the start of the year. As they continue to destroy clandestine airstrips, Honduran authorities hope to block strategic routes used by traffickers to move drugs, weapons, and humans through national territory, according to La Tribuna. Destruction Complete The non-essential support staff retreats 200 meters from the blast zone before the explosives experts light the fuse and move back to join the others. At the two-minute mark, smoke comes off the slow-burning fuse as the fire advances to the explosives, and the whole area begins to smell like explosive powder. A minute later, it detonates, leaving behind craters measuring approximately 18×7 meters and rendering the airstrip unusable by traffickers. Depending on the length of the landing strip, the Soldiers may need to repeat this process six or more times. Operation Morazán will continue in 2015, according to Honduran authorities. In fact, two clandestine airstrips have already been destroyed in the Brus Laguna sector of Gracias a Dios since the start of the year. As they continue to destroy clandestine airstrips, Honduran authorities hope to block strategic routes used by traffickers to move drugs, weapons, and humans through national territory, according to La Tribuna. Still, the Honduran Military continues to conduct widespread efforts to destroy the airstrips in the region in order to curb the influx of narco flights. As part of this effort, the National Inter-Institutional Security Force (FUSINA for its Spanish acronym), which is comprised of Military and police, follows a four-phase systematic approach to eradicating landing strips. According to El Heraldo, these phases include identification of airstrips, seizure, movement of explosives to destruction site, and the actual bombing. In employing this method, FUSINA reportedly destroyed 48 clandestine airstrips in 2014 as part of Operation Morazán. The majority of these was located in the Brus Laguna sector of Gracias a Dios Department, per a source cited by local newspaper La Tribuna. Identification Identification Clandestine landing strips are most commonly built in remote-access areas within the dense Honduran rainforest, including Brus Laguna, Ahuas, and Puerto Lempira. The principal means that Honduran authorities use to discover these strips include aerial reconnaissance, ground patrols, and the collection of human intelligence. Once detected, FUSINA operatives in Gracias a Dios get the exact geo-coordinates so they can plan a destruction mission if deemed necessary. La Mosquitia is located in the easternmost part of Honduras along the Mosquito Coast and is known for its lush rainforests and diverse indigenous populations. Cut-off from urban society, this region extends across 32,500 square meters, has few roads, and is best accessed by air and water routes. In spite of its difficult access by land, its location is geographically perfect for receiving aerial drug shipments from countries in South America, which is why the area is home to more than 200 clandestine airstrips, as reported by Honduran newspaper El Heraldo. In fact, the same source reports that nearly 79 percent of all narco flights originating in South American countries use the Mosquito Coast as a drop-off point for cocaine shipments. center_img Ready to Bomb Clandestine landing strips are most commonly built in remote-access areas within the dense Honduran rainforest, including Brus Laguna, Ahuas, and Puerto Lempira. The principal means that Honduran authorities use to discover these strips include aerial reconnaissance, ground patrols, and the collection of human intelligence. Once detected, FUSINA operatives in Gracias a Dios get the exact geo-coordinates so they can plan a destruction mission if deemed necessary. Site Preparation Ready to Bomb Once an airstrip is identified, explosive experts and support staff assigned to the 1st Engineering Battalion dig three 90-centimeter holes in a triangular formation. Soldiers then place 50 pounds of ANFO (ammonium nitrate/fuel oil) in each hole and attach a 45-foot slow-burning fuse to a detonation cord, which is wrapped around two dynamite cartridges and a one-pound bar of explosive emulsion and placed on top of the ANFO. Finally, they cover the hole, leaving only the slow-burning fuse visible. Once an airstrip is identified, explosive experts and support staff assigned to the 1st Engineering Battalion dig three 90-centimeter holes in a triangular formation. Soldiers then place 50 pounds of ANFO (ammonium nitrate/fuel oil) in each hole and attach a 45-foot slow-burning fuse to a detonation cord, which is wrapped around two dynamite cartridges and a one-pound bar of explosive emulsion and placed on top of the ANFO. Finally, they cover the hole, leaving only the slow-burning fuse visible. Still, the Honduran Military continues to conduct widespread efforts to destroy the airstrips in the region in order to curb the influx of narco flights. As part of this effort, the National Inter-Institutional Security Force (FUSINA for its Spanish acronym), which is comprised of Military and police, follows a four-phase systematic approach to eradicating landing strips. According to El Heraldo, these phases include identification of airstrips, seizure, movement of explosives to destruction site, and the actual bombing. In employing this method, FUSINA reportedly destroyed 48 clandestine airstrips in 2014 as part of Operation Morazán. The majority of these was located in the Brus Laguna sector of Gracias a Dios Department, per a source cited by local newspaper La Tribuna. Future Operations? Destruction Complete The non-essential support staff retreats 200 meters from the blast zone before the explosives experts light the fuse and move back to join the others. At the two-minute mark, smoke comes off the slow-burning fuse as the fire advances to the explosives, and the whole area begins to smell like explosive powder. A minute later, it detonates, leaving behind craters measuring approximately 18×7 meters and rendering the airstrip unusable by traffickers. Depending on the length of the landing strip, the Soldiers may need to repeat this process six or more times. In a perfect world, bombing a single airstrip would be enough to impede traffickers from rebuilding in the area, but this not true here, since they consider those airstrips essential for operations and quickly move to rebuild them. El Heraldo reported on a popular strip in Brus Laguna that was bombed by Honduran authorities on three separate occasions last year. If the traffickers plan on rebuilding a bombed airstrip, they generally allow the ground to settle for a few days before doing so. At that point, hundreds of workers are hired to work during the night to meticulously repair the holes and ensure a smooth landing strip. Brazilian politicians don’t let the security forces work.last_img read more

Expect auto loan growth throughout 2015

December 18, 2020 | bqfdduvy | No Comments

first_imgBetter employment picture will boost the auto industry, forecast says.Auto loan debt per borrower will continue on an upward trend, rising to $18,244 at the end of 2015, according to TransUnion.That would make 19 consecutive quarters of increases since the first quarter of 2011, when auto loan debt per borrower stood at $14,954.The TransUnion forecast calls for the national auto loan delinquency rate (the ratio of borrowers 60 or more days past due) to end 2014 at 1%, and increase slightly to 1.27% at the end of 2015.“We expect the auto loan market to continue to perform exceptionally well in 2015, with more sales leading to continued increases in auto loan debt per borrower as the national portfolio gets younger on average,” says Peter Turek, automotive vice president in TransUnion’s financial services business unit.TransUnion anticipates the economy will continue to improve in 2015, with a better employment picture boosting the auto industry.Improving labor markets, higher incomes, and pent-up demand led to fast credit union loan portfolio growth in the third quarter, Mike Schenk, vice president of CUNA’s economics and statistics department, writes in February issue of Credit Union Magazine. continue reading » 8SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

first_img“It’s a little stressful, but this community has shown to be very generous,” said Hansen. They collect money providing life-changing services to people in need. “We usually generate 20 percent of our budget during this time of the year so the red kettles are extremely important in our fundraising efforts and all of those monies stay here in Binghamton and in Broome County to service those people here at the local level,” said Captain Joseph Hansen with the Salvation Army of Binghamton. “Oh, I’m very hopefully we’ll meet the goal. I firmly believe this community will step up,” he said. (WBNG) — It’s a sound you know all too well when you’re out doing holiday shopping… Salvation Army kettle bells. If you are looking to donate, you can find kettles and bell-ringers at Walmart, Sam’s Club, Weis, and Price Chopper. “Year after year the volunteer issue is growing, just getting people to donate a couple hours at the stand.” “It is an option for people to come out. And I think as time goes on it will become more and more prevalent as people realize they don’t have to have cash to give,” said Hansen.center_img But this winter, the Salvation Army of Binghamton is at less than 30% of its campaign fundraising goal, with only about two weeks left. Hansen thinks an upcoming 24-hour kettle will help the organization reach its goal. That’s when one volunteer will be manning a kettle at the Vestal Walmart for 24 hours straight. It’s taking place December 20 starting at 4 p.m. Hansen says it’s not so much about the donors, but more so the lack of volunteers the area is seeing. The campaign ends on Christmas Eve, so there’s still time to raise money. And since the holiday season is about hope, that’s something Hansen is holding onto. He says people have actually been more than generous, especially considering ‘Kettle Pay’ was rolled out this year. That allows you to use your phone to make a donation. If you want to volunteer, you still can. Just reach out to the Salvation Army of Binghamton at (607)722-2987.last_img read more

Man injured in standoff with police

September 24, 2020 | bqfdduvy | No Comments

first_imgJENNINGS COUNTY, Ind. — A Butlerville man has been injured after a shootout with police in Jennings County on Saturday, according to the Indiana State Police.Police say around 3:30 Saturday morning, officers responded to a 911 call regarding a domestic disturbance with shots fired at 5575 North County Road 750 East near Nebraska.After the initial altercation where at least one shot was fired, a female left the residence and went to a neighbor for assistance.When officers arrived on scene, the lone male occupant of the residence, Charles L. Mays, 25, of Butlerville, exited the house and fired at the approaching officers.Multiple officers returned fire and Mays retreated back into the residence and refused to surrender.Additional officers, including Indiana State Police Negotiators and State Emergency Response Team responded to the residence.Contact was made with Mays throughout the day, but he remained barricaded until around 7:45 PM when he exited and surrendered to the officers.Mays was immediately given medical care on the scene for injuries sustained during the incident and was then transported to St. Vincent Jennings Hospital in North Vernon for further treatment of injuries which are believed to be non-life threatening.Mays is expected to be transported to the Jennings County Jail where he will face preliminary charges of attempted murder, intimidation with a deadly weapon, criminal recklessness, and battery.Police are not releasing the names of the officers involved in the shooting at this time.The investigation is ongoing.last_img read more

first_imgIndianapolis, In. — The Indiana State Fair, which runs Friday, Aug. 3, through Sunday, Aug. 19, is offering the following deals to fairgoers:Ride Safe Indiana Day Sunday, Aug. 5The first 100 motorcycles that enter Gate 6 may park on Main Street.Chevrolet Military DayMonday, Aug. 6Military personnel and their family members get in free with military ID.$2 Tuesday Presented by the Secretary of StateTuesdays, Aug. 7 and 14Attendees pay a $2 admission fee, Midway rides are $2, and concessionaires have $2 food specials.Indiana Pork Day and Farmers’ DayWednesdays, Aug. 8 and 15Attendees receive free admission when they present the ticket printed in the Indianapolis Star, and those age 55 and older ride the shuttles for free.BMV Discount DayThursday, Aug. 9Attendees pay a $6 admission fee when they present a printed voucher from myBMV.com.Hoosier Lottery DaySaturday, Aug. 11While supplies last, those 18 and older receive a free lottery ticket.First Responders DayMonday, Aug. 13Statewide firefighters, police officers and EMT personnel, along with their families, receive free admission when they present an ID or badge at the gate.AAA DayThursday, Aug. 16AAA members receive free admission when they present their card.For more information on the State Fair deals, click here.last_img read more

first_imgJAMESTOWN, N.D. (Oct. 10) – Xtreme Motor Sports IMCA Modifieds chase a $2,000 top check at Jame­stown Speedway’s Friday and Saturday, Oct. 14-15 Stock Car Stampede.The Stampede is a qualifying event for the 2017 Fast Shafts All-Star Invitational ballot. The run­ner-up earns $1,500 with $1,000 paid for third; drivers taking the main event green earn a mini­mum of $300.Heat races begin at 7 p.m. on Friday with “B” features preceding Saturday’s main event. What’s new at the 45th annual Stampede is a $500 to win, minimum $120 to start race for the top 24 Modi­fied non-qualifiers.Other non-qualifiers who finish their “B” race will be paid $50.Car and driver entry fee for the Modifieds is $90. Pit passes are $60 for Friday and Saturday or $35 for Saturday; no Friday only pit passes will be sold.Pit gates open at 10 a.m. and the grandstand opens at 3 p.m. on Friday. Tickets are $18 for adults and $45 for a family pass. Gates open at 2 p.m. and racing starts at 5 p.m. on Saturday. Grandstand admission is $23 for adults and $55 for a family pass.Kids ages 6-14 are $10 and five and under are free both nights. Advance tickets are available from the Cenex Convenience Store or Neighborhood Grocery.Camping is available on the fairgrounds for $25 a night. More information is posted on the www.jamestownspeedway.com website and on Facebook.Proceeds from the Driver Calcutta Auction will be split by the winning bidders, drivers in the respec­tive divisions and local charities.The Stock Car Stampede had been rescheduled from Sept. 23-24 due to inclement weather.last_img read more

Kay wins thriller, Freiburger repeats at Dubuque

September 23, 2020 | bqfdduvy | No Comments

first_imgBy Jerry MackeyDUBUQUE, Iowa (June 25) – The Out-Pace IMCA Late Model main event was a thriller on a fast-paced night of racing Sunday at Dubuque Speedway.Dan Shelliam quickly took the lead by using the extreme high line around the track and appeared to be planning on celebrating his anniversary in victory lane, but the late race heroics by Justin Kay changed those plans.Shelliam saw his huge lead erased by a lap 17 caution. Kay and Shelliam swapped the lead on every corner the last eight circuits by using very well executed slide jobs. When the final check­ered flew it was Kay holding off Shelliam to garner the win.While the leaders were battling it out, the race for third was hotly contested as well. Jeremiah Hurst was able to cross the line in third ahead of Joel Callahan and Luke Merfeld.The Merfeld Brothers IMCA Modified feature was another great race which saw brother-in-laws Jed Freiburger and Mark Schulte race for the win. Freiburger topped the very competitive event for his second consecutive Dubuque Speedway win. Schulte took second ahead of Tyler Madigan.Tyler Soppe again flexed his muscles in the GSI Collision Specialists IMCA Northern SportMod class. Soppe started eighth and worked his way to the front using multiple lines on the track. Soppe took the feature win by holding off a strong running Troy Bauer.The Bakey Seamless Gutters IMCA Stock Car feature win went to Dustin Wilwert. Driving Jerry Miles’ no. 4 car, Wilwert out raced Brian Meier to the 12-lap victory.The final checkered flag of the night waved at 8:59 p.m.last_img read more