We have our own meditation garden now in Quepos. It is located next to the fire station. It is very pretty and tranquil inside, but it needs a little financial help to complete. If you can help, please contact Ivan Esteves at 8629-0023 or email IE77@live.com.–Jennifer Rice firstname.lastname@example.org Facebook Comments No related posts.
Marauding tourists are hardly the only threat to sea turtles on Costa Rica’s northwest coast. Last Friday, two Coast Guard officers patrolling Junquillal beach near the town of Flamingo, Santa Cruz caught two poachers with hundreds of Olive Ridley (Lepidochelys olivacea) sea turtle eggs, according to the Public Security Ministry.The suspects, identified with the surnames Carrera and Gutiérrez, were carrying their loot of 315 lora turtle eggs in several bags when law enforcement found them Friday evening. Coast Guard officers handed both suspects over to the flagrancy court in Flamingo. Commander Rodolfo Coto, director of the Flamingo Coast Guard station, said that the eggs were no longer viable and had to be destroyed, according to a statement from the Security Ministry.Olive Ridley turtles are listed as a “vulnerable” species by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. Egg harvesting, bycatch from industrial fishing and impacts to their habitat are listed as possible reasons for the sea turtles’ downward population trends.Coto said that Coast Guard officials have increased their patrols along the beach recently as Olive Ridley turtles come ashore in droves to lay their eggs between September and October along the northwestern coast.See also: Ojochal beach besieged by turtle poachers, biologists say Facebook Comments Related posts:5 more green sea turtles rescued by Costa Rican police in Caribbean Police find 9,400 sea turtle eggs in car trunk outside Nicoya US government sued over sea turtles snared in shrimp nets Following threats, poachers allegedly attack sea turtle conservationists in Costa Rica, Sea Shepherd says
Categories: News Rep. Bumstead participates in the 2nd Annual Polar Plunge benefitting the Special Olympics 28Feb Polar Plunge
Lawmaker unveils legislation to address concerns in Shelby TownshipMichigan townships would have the ability to regulate the setback distance between oil drilling operations and residential homes under legislation introduced today by Rep. Peter J. Lucido that updates an archaic state law created in the 1940s.Michigan cities and villages can establish their own rules regarding gas and oil drilling setbacks but townships are regulated by the state. After hearing ongoing complaints from township residents, the state Department of Environmental Quality recently issued new rules for townships, but Rep. Lucido said the guidelines don’t properly address the setback issue.“Township residents have inherent rights to their safety and well-being, and those rights are not being properly addressed by the DEQ,” said Rep. Lucido, a Republican from Shelby Township. “They’re still taking a 1940s approach to a 21st century reality. Townships today are much more densely populated, and these municipal governments deserve to properly monitor drilling operations to keep people safe and help maintain their quality of life.”Rep. Lucido said more than 90 percent of all drilling operations in Michigan occur in townships, and it doesn’t make sense that township officials are unable to regulate the operations to best serve residents. Rep. Lucido’s bill would repeal a portion of the Michigan Zoning Enabling Act that prohibits townships from regulating or controlling gas and oil drilling operations within their boundaries.“I fully support drilling because it’s an important way to lessen our dependence on foreign oil and keep costs down, but these companies need to be good neighbors,” said Rep. Lucido. “The state’s current policy is not sufficient to protect the health, safety and well-being of township residents. My legislation will empower township governments and give residents the rights they deserve. ”Rep. Lucido said Shelby Township residents are concerned about recent drilling operations in the area, but currently have no genuine recourse to address their concerns. He said giving township governments the opportunity to set their own parameters, especially when it comes to establishing setbacks, will benefit all residents.“Townships make up the largest majority of municipal governments in our state, but because of a 1940s mindset, hundreds of thousands of Michigan residents who live in townships have no real options if an oil rig locates near their homes,” Rep. Lucido said. “This legislation is about local control and common sense. It’s about giving township residents the basic rights that are afforded to people who live in cities or villages.”House Bill 4237 has been referred to the House Committee on Energy Policy.### 24Feb Townships need more control over drilling operations — Rep. Lucido Categories: Lucido News
Rep. Holly Hughes, R–Montague, honored former office intern Loryn Blink with a tribute during the state House session on Tuesday.Blink, a resident of Muskegon County, will be graduating in May 2016 in the top five of her class at Cooley Law School in Lansing.“I want to thank Loryn for her service to our hometown and the State of Michigan!” said Rep. Hughes. “She is off to bigger and better things.”The office of Rep. Hughes, representing the majority of Muskegon County in the state’s 91st District, is currently looking to fill internship positions for the 2016 Summer and Fall semesters. Interns would have the opportunity to assist Rep. Hughes and her staff in general office operations including constituent relations, communications, monitoring legislation, and more. Students will gain valuable hands-on office and legislative experience in a fast-paced environment. Hours are flexible.Please send resumes and cover letters to HollyHughes@house.mi.gov Categories: Hughes News,News 14Apr Rep. Hughes honors Muskegon County native following internship
Categories: News The House Workforce and Talent Development committee today heard testimony on a measure that would allow more flexibility in the Michigan Merit Curriculum by allowing for expanded options in meeting high school graduation requirements, including that of a computer coding class.State Rep. Lisa Posthumus Lyons (R-Alto), sponsor of House Bill 5463, was joined by Michael Lomonaco of Open Systems Technology in Grand Rapids and Forest Hills Public Schools Superintendent Dan Behm, as well as a teacher and two students from the school district. They shared testimony with the committee that job providers are looking for students who have 21st century skills, and students face a credit crunch when it comes to required courses impeding their ability to also take electives where they learn important and valuable skills.“Michigan’s graduation requirements must meet the needs of our students, and every student is different,” said Rep. Lyons. “This bill has the potential to enhance and increase foreign language opportunities while adding flexibility for all students so that they are able to learn skills that not only enrich their lives, but prepare them for the 21st century workforce.”House Bill 5463 replaces the current K-12 requirement of at least two foreign language credits and one credit in visual arts, performing arts, or applied arts with a total of three credits in “21st Century Skills.” 21st Century Skills credits can be satisfied by any of the following: a language other than English; visual arts, performing arts, or applied arts; computer science or computer coding, or a combination of these; an approved formal career and technical education programThe committee plans to continue testimony on HB 5463 next week.### 28Apr Rep. Lyons’ bill prepares students through more graduation requirement flexibility
24Apr Rep. Rendon votes for budget addressing northern Michigan’s top needs Health care. New doctors would have incentives to work in underserved rural areas. Access to mental health services will be improved so residents can live healthier, happier and more independent lives, reflecting the House CARES initiative. Categories: Daire Rendon News,News Job preparation programs, increased access to health care in rural areas, and record-high investment in schools and roads are part of a budget plan approved today by Rep. Daire Rendon and the Michigan House.“This is a plan that will help the great communities of northern Michigan and make the region an even better place to live and raise a family,” said Rendon, of Lake City. “We’re getting help to where it is needed most while being very careful to eliminate waste and hold down overall spending statewide.”Rendon represents the residents of Crawford, Kalkaska, Missaukee, Roscommon and Ogemaw counties in the Michigan House.The House plan for the budget year beginning Oct. 1 focuses on:More than a quarter of the House’s overall budget proposal goes to K-12 schools. School funding would increase to $14.8 billion, a new state record for K-12 investment, with the largest annual per-student increase in 15 years – ranging from $120 to $240 per student. Early literacy and support for academically at-risk students are priorities. Workforce development. More than $100 million is added to talent development and workforce preparation programs at the K-12 level. Significant investments in other programs such as Going PRO also will help prepare residents for high-demand jobs. Support for families. More money would be invested in child welfare services, foster care and services for seniors. Savings for taxpayers. A prison would be closed, reflecting successful efforts to reduce Michigan’s inmate population. Budgets for several state departments would decline as state government becomes more efficient and eliminates waste. Overall, the House plan spends less money next budget year – continuing a trend of spending less annually while prioritizing what’s most important. Road repairs. Funding will rise to the highest levels in Michigan history as the state addresses one of its biggest needs. Overall, the state will have pumped more than $2 billion in additional funds into roads and bridges over a three-year period by the upcoming budget year – with more money coming in the future. House Bills 5578-9 advance to the Senate as work to finalize the next state budget continues.###
Categories: Vaupel News 10Jul Reading contest hosted by Rep. Vaupel underway State Rep. Hank Vaupel of Fowlerville is holding his annual summer reading contest for students first through fifth grade. The contest concludes Sept. 1, where the winners will be invited to Lansing to be “Rep. for a Day.”“I am excited to host this reading program for the young people of our community,” Rep. Vaupel said. “Studies show reading over the summer helps students with learning retention, preparing them for the following school year. It also provides a great opportunity for our youth to learn about the legislative process and how their government works.”To enter, students must fill out a special contest bookmark with 10 books they have read over the summer. The bookmarks can be found at the Howell, Hartland, and Fowlerville libraries, and there is no limit to the number of entries. The winners will be randomly drawn and invited to Lansing with their families to serve with Rep. Vaupel as “Rep. for a Day.”Questions related to the contest or other state issues should be directed to Rep. Vaupel’s office by calling (517) 373-8835 or by email at HankVaupel@house.mi.gov.PHOTO INFORMATION: State Rep. Hank Vaupel poses with the 2017 Michigan Reads selection to promote childhood reading.
Share3Tweet2ShareEmail5 SharesMarch 31, 2016; WEMU-FMMany attribute the dire situation in Flint, Michigan to the fact that it was an emergency manager who decided from where the water would be sourced, speculating that for that manager, the financial state of the small, low-income, largely African-American city took precedence over the health of its residents. Darnell Earley, the emergency manager sent into Flint, recently resigned a similar position over Detroit schools where parents were similarly frustrated with having little to no voice in the face of crumbling facilities. These issues have brought emergency manager laws into the public eye. Are they anti-democratic, especially when the problems of a locality result less from mismanagement than from structural poverty?The Sugar Law Center for Social and Economic Justice has filed a brief asking the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals to reverse a Detroit federal judge’s order to retain the majority of Michigan’s 2012 emergency manager law, which built on a law in place since 1988 allowing state takeovers of localities.The brief assets that the law is used most often in poor communities and that it violates voting rights.This appeal seeks to restore to the constitutional rights of all residents in Michigan who have lost their voting rights and/or had their 1st Amendment rights infringed by Michigan’s novel experiment in local governance.John Philo, an attorney for the Center, wants to test the legality of the state’s transferring decision-making power from local elected officials to a political appointee. “That hasn’t been seen before,” he said. “It’s a novel issue for the court. It’s important, we believe, for the courts to finally say, look, if a person has the legislative power to make laws, they have to be elected.”The state must now respond before the appeals court decides whether to hear arguments.—Ruth McCambridgeShare3Tweet2ShareEmail5 Shares
Share52TweetShare13Email65 Shares“Americans With Disabilities Act Annual Celebration,” by Jay Baker at Baltimore County, MarylandMarch 14, 2017; PasteMedia coverage of murder rarely if ever rationalizes the crime—unless the victim is a person with a disability. In an interview with Paste, David M. Perry, a disability-rights journalist, discussed his review of media coverage published between 2011 and 2015 of cases of filicide (the murder of one’s son or daughter) in which the victim had a disability. What he found was that the media perpetuates a narrative in which people with disabilities are dehumanized and discriminated against.A recent Ruderman Family Foundation report written by Perry indicates that at least one person with a disability is killed each week by the very people who are supposed to take care of them. The number of murders is astounding, especially considering this counts only those cases that are reported, but what’s also disturbing is that these murderers are walking away with incredibly light sentences that do not fit the crime. For instance, the Huffington Post compares the sentences of two very similar manslaughter cases, each involving a mother killing her son. In the case of the child with a disability, the mother received only a three-year sentence, but in the case of the child without a documented disability, the mother received a 43-year sentence—the maximum for the crime. Why is the murder of one child deemed worthy of a significantly longer sentence than the other?Vilissa Thompson, founder of the disability advocacy group Ramp Your Voice!, sums this up: “It really goes back to the misunderstanding about disability—that disability is this horrendous life experience nobody wants to have. When you have these stories of ‘mercy killing’ and the way they’re portrayed, it expounds on the ableism and the inaccurate understanding further.”A report of the murder of Alex Spourdalakis by his mother and godmother seems to show more compassion for the murderers than for the victim: “Alex was severely autistic; nonverbal and prone to fits of raise [sic]. Dorothy said she was at the point where she was unable to care for him or even control him. She’d spent years seeking out healthcare options and had come up empty.” The article paints Alex out to be a troublesome child that no one could handle, whereas his mother was an exhausted caregiver out of options. The entire story is about the suffering of Alex’s caregivers; it does not read how an article about a gruesome murder should.Sadly, it isn’t a new or unheard-of phenomenon for people with disabilities to be treated unfairly by the justice system and by the media. NPQ has extensively covered how people with disabilities face excessive force from police and are often victims of police shootings, but aside from reporting the facts, these issues are largely overlooked by mainstream media. Perhaps Perry’s white paper will generate conversation and force the media to reconsider how they frame stories of violence against people with disabilities.—Sheela NimishakaviShare52TweetShare13Email65 Shares
Vincent Bolloré is to join the supervisory board of Vivendi following his company’s crossing of a 5% shareholder threshold in the French media and telecoms giant as a result of the latter’s acquisition of Direct 8 and Direct Star – now renamed D8 and D17 – from Bolloré Group. “The supervisory board welcomes the presence in Vivendi’s capital of an industrial, family-owned French group, who has now become one of the largest Vivendi shareholders,” said Vivendi chairman Jean-René Fourtou. “Confirming what I declared at the shareholders’ meeting on April 19, 2012, we will propose that Vincent Bolloré joins Vivendi’s supervisory board.”Bolloré Group has said it will remain at its current level of participation in Vivendi and that it planned to remain a shareholder for the long term. The 5.01% stake gives Bolloré the status of the leading institutional shareholder in the company, followed by Black Rock with 4.6% and Société Générale with 4.55%.Bolloré’s joining of the supervisory board comes amidst speculation that Vivendi is moving to dispose of non-media assets including mobile and fixed-line telco SFR, as well as stakes in telcos outside Europe.
Russian broadcaster CTC Media has appointed Timur Weinstein to its board of directors, replacing Dimitry Afanasiev, who has resigned to pursue other interests.Weinstein is one of three board members designated by Bank Rossiya affiliate Telcrest Investments.“On behalf of the board of directors, we would like to thank Dimitry for his contribution to the company and wish him the very best for the future. We are delighted to welcome Timur Weinstein to the board. We are convinced that his background and experience will contribute to the continued growth and success of the company going forward,” said Hans-Holger Albrecht, co-chairman of CTC Media.
Eutelsat Communications and RSCC (the Russian Satellite Communications Company) have selected Astrium to build its Express-AMU1/Eutelsat 36C satellite.Due to launch in 2015, the new satellite will provide follow-on and expansion capacity for the Eutelsat 36A broadcast satellite operating at 36° East.The high-capacity satellite will include up to 70 transponders and is designed to transform the broadcasting infrastructure at 36° East to support more television services and IP-based interactive services for Russia’s digital entertainment market.The Express-AMU1/Eutelsat 36C satellite will provide coverage for broadcast services in the European part of the Russian Federation in Ku and Ka bands, and ensure service continuity and growth for broadcast markets developed by Eutelsat in sub-Saharan Africa.
Danish cable operator has launched Bredbånd med Bland Selv, its previously announced broadband offering that allows users to mix upstream and downstream speeds according to their requirements. YouSee chief executive Mathias Berg said the move reflected the growing demand from customers for more choice both in TV and broadband.YouSee is offering a range of four options for the service. The most basic allows users to choose, for DKK219 (€29), between 15Mbps/3Mbps, 12Mbps/9Mbps or 9Mbps/9Mbps, while the highest tier offers 100Mbps/20Mbps, 80Mbps/40Mbps or 60Mbps/60Mbps for DKK399.
US-based second screen TV app Viggle has acquired celebrity gossip and entertainment news site Wetpaint. The deal closed for a reported US$30 million (€22 million) and will see Viggle integrate “brand new Wetpaint-tastic features” into its service.Announcing the acquisition in a statement on its website, Viggle said that the addition of Wetpaint would take its service “beyond primetime.”“Wetpaint is the place to indulge your TV obsessions 24/7, from breaking news to red-hot spoilers, hilarious recaps and in-depth coverage of the Housewives’ catfights. Vigglers, get ready to know your favorite shows on a whole new level,” the firm said.In November 2012 Viggle agreed to acquire rival social TV app provider GetGlue for US$25 million (€20 million) and 48.3 million shares. However, the deal fell through earlier this year, and GetGlue was eventually bought by US mobile TV guide app i.TV last month.
At800, the UK body set up to test for interference from 4G networks on DTT in the UK, has scaled back plans to pre-emptively curb service disturbances, claiming that disruption to Freeview will be “less widespread than initially estimated.”Announcing at800’s new approach to at a press briefing in London, CEO Ben Roome said that from February the organisation will start a six-month trial of no longer pro-actively sending free filters, designed to correct 4G interference, to households, and will instead retrospectively respond to issues.“We will be focusing our support, and offering more support, to people who we believe have been affected by 4G at 800Mhz, as opposed to trying to guess in advance who would be effected by it,” said Roome.To date at800 has sent out 1 million filters to households in the UK, following an initial estimate that 900,000 houses could be at risk of service disruption.However, last summer the organisation revised this figure down to 90,000 in what Roome this week described as an “upper limit.”Explaining why the new approach made more sense, he said that tests so far had shown that interference was “lower than originally predicted,” was only found within 900 metres of 4G masts and that areas with strong DTT signal are less likely to experience disruption.Roome also promised “quicker response and resolution times” under the new system, cutting service restoration times from 15 to 10 days for homes that have their own aerial, where Freeview is the primary means of watching TV and if 4G is diagnosed as the service problem.However, Roome admitted that at800 has cut its number of regional contractors that supply accredited filter installers from eight to three. Outsourced call centre staff numbers have been cut by a third from a peak of 100, while at800’s own in-house staff has shrunk from 36 to 20.At800 is an independent organisation but is funded by the UK mobile operators licensed to offer 4G mobile services at 800 MHz – EE, O2, Three and Vodafone.The operators provided a ringfenced fund of £180 million (€218 million) for at800 to operate for a period that will run until 2017, when coverage obligation ends. At800 would not reveal how much of this £180 budget it has used, but said it did not expect to overspend. All unspent funds will be returned to the mobile operators.
Broadcast technology company Motive Television is preparing to launch its Tablet TV Freeview product in the UK, after signing a final agreement with South Korean digital adapter firm, icube Corporation.Motive said it is set to release retail products that will enable “full-featured and certified Freeview broadcast TV to be received on mobile devices in the United Kingdom.”Motive first announced it was partnering with icube to combine software and make a Tablet TV product in December 2013.
Amazon’s streaming service Prime Instant Video has secured six American titles from Viacom International Media Networks for its UK operation.The shows are Awkward, Kung Fu Panda, Legend of Awesomeness, Penguins of Madagascar, Winx Club, Legend of Korra and The Hard Times of RJ Berger.Also included in the multi-year agreement are the non-exclusive renewal of thousands of episodes of show such as Dora the Explorer and Avatar: The Last Airbender.Viacom International Media Networks, Viacom’s global arm, sells the shows across the world.“With hugely popular shows available to stream unlimitedly ranging from family friendly Penguins of Madagascar to American teen comedy Awkward, there’s something to suit every age group, taste and mood,” said Amazon’s director of content strategy Chris Bird. “Varied, quality content is our top priority so we’re always looking out for opportunities to forge partnerships which help make this possible.”
Swedish cable operator Com Hem’s TiVo advanced TV user base now stands at over a fifth of its TV base, with the company adding 30,000 in the quarter to September to take its TiVo total to 132,000. Com Hem posted solid third quarter results on the back of a generally strong operational performance, with its subscriber base growing by 15,000 to 861,000 and its digital TV base growing by 8,000 to 607,000.Broadband subscribers increased by 17,000 to 594,000 revenue generating units, while the fixed telephony base grew for the first quarter since 2011 by 3,000 RGUs and churn declined from 16.4% in the prior quarter to 14.8% in the third quarter.Com Hem’s revenue for the quarter stood at SEK1.21 billion (€130 million), up 9.6% year-on-year, while underlying EBITDA stood at SEK576 million, up 1.1%. The operator turned in a net profit of SEK7 million excluding one-off costs associated with its IPO, against a loss of SEK82 million last year.“The third quarter demonstrates that we continue delivering on our growth strategy. All key metrics show significant progress. Total revenue was up almost 10% compared with the corresponding quarter last year, with consumer revenue rising by 5% – on the back of our sales momentum, lower churn and higher consumer ARPU,” said CEO Anders Nilsson.“Broadband has been our key focus during the quarter as we upgraded a significant proportion of our customer base and strengthened our market proposition, raising our minimum entry level speed to 50Mpbs – five times faster than the competition – and making it more attractive for customers to upgrade to higher speeds. These changes were supported by significant marketing activity and resulted in an all-time high number, since 2007, of 17,000 net additions to our broadband subscriber base in the quarter combined with a material improvement in the proportion of new customers choosing 100Mbps and above.”
The UK government has called for evidence to be submitted to its independent review into whether non-payment of the TV licence fee should be decriminalised. The government first announced its review last September, looking at whether the current sanctions for failing to buy a TV licence are “appropriate, fair, and represent value for money.”The options being considered include decriminalising TV licence evasion and instead imposing a civil monetary penalty or a civil debt.Other ideas include leaving the current offence as it stands but reforming the current criminal enforcement system or allowing out-of-court settlements.The review will investigate whether these options would represent an “improvement to the existing system.”Currently a person who uses a TV receiver without a TV licence is guilty of a criminal offence under the Communications Act 2003 and may be fined a maximum of £1,000 (€1,350).In some cases where there is a refusal to pay the fine a person can be sent to jail for non-payment of a court-imposed fine.Earlier this month peers in the House of Lords narrowly voted against moves to decriminalise non-payment of the licence fee before 2017. However the independent review keeps open the possibility of introducing the change in legislation.The current consultation will run until May 1, 2015 and the review will report by the end of June 2015, with the findings to be presented to parliament and the BBC Trust.