Outdoor Updates: The Conservation Alliance changes leadership

first_imgA new leader will take the helm of The Conservation Alliance on November 1. Brady Robinson has been named the latest executive director of the alliance, a collective of businesses that support the efforts of grassroots environmental organizations and their efforts to protect wild places where people recreate. Brady takes over from John Sterling, who served on the board of the organization since 1996 and became the first executive director in 2004. The Conservation Alliance changes leadership, Brady Robinson to serve as executive director “I am incredibly honored and excited to have the opportunity to help lead this organization,” Robinson said. “With a crystal clear mission, 30-year history and healthy financial foundation, The Conservation Alliance is perfectly positioned to grow and play an even greater role in protecting wild places.” One of Robinson’s first responsibilities will be participating in the organization’s three-year strategic planning retreat with a goal of identifying long-term intentions for the organization.  Robinson was selected for the role after a nine-month search. He has many years as a conservationist, climber, and educator, including more than a decade at Outward Bound and 11 years at the Access Fund, which keeps climbing areas preserved and open for climbing. He was also the founding board chair of the Outdoor Alliance, a coalition partner with The Conservation Alliance. In his most current role, he served as Director of Strategy and Development for Tompkins Conservation, which creates land and marine national parks in South America.center_img Robinson spent his childhood in rural Minnesota. Trips to the Boundary Waters Canoe Wilderness Area instilled in him a lifelong love of the outdoors. Robinson grew to be an accomplished climber and alpinist, with first ascents in both Patagonia and Pakistan.  Since The Conservation Alliance began in 1989, it has awarded 650 grants of over $22 million to protect more than 52 million acres of wildlands and 3,112 miles of river. The alliance has also stopped or removed 34 dams, designated five marine reserves and purchased 14 climbing areas.last_img read more

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Disparate impact studies especially tough on dynamic matrix systems

first_img 4SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Richard Miller Richard joined JMFA after a 23-year career in banking, providing JMFA and our clients with a broad base of management experience in community banking, from chief lending officer to president … Web: www.jmfa.com Details As regulations on financial products and services continue to rank among the top concerns for credit unions, many institutions are re-evaluating the viability of the products they offer to their members.Overdraft matrix systems are complicated algorithms that have come under increased scrutiny insofar as their effect on protected classes.  These programs are not transparent and are based on an abstract set of parameters or a complex matrix of eligibility requirements that are suspected of having a disparate impact on certain member segments.When program eligibility favors one group of potential users over others or restricts a member from accessing the service based upon abstract or subjective factors, compliance violations and damaged account holder relationships may occur.Avoid risk of disparate impact with consistent overdraft program eligibility criteriaWhen it comes to on-going regulatory review of overdraft solutions, credit unions can rest easy if their program is fully disclosed and provides specific eligibility requirements for all members.  For example, the use of unbiased criteria that pertain to everyone reduces the likelihood of criticism or negative consumer impact.Also, programs based on ad hoc decisions were common in the days when a credit union officer or branch manager would review account overdrafts early every morning and decide whose check to pay and whose to deny, often based on subjective criteria. Today that practice could be equated to having a disparate impact on account holders who were denied the service.With the availability of fully transparent overdraft solutions, credit unions can avoid inconsistent decisions when it comes to overdraft program eligibility requirements.  The key is to select a program provider that uses criteria that are objective and based on conditions that are common to all account holders. This will help to alleviate any compliance concerns regarding discrimination or disparate impact against any member segment.For best results, look for a compliance-tested, regulator-approved programFinancial institutions and outside vendors that have created their own eligibility criteria – based on an abstract set of parameters or a complex matrix of eligibility requirements – run the risk of negative examiner reaction and the possibility of adverse action by a class of consumers.Did your credit union turn off your overdraft program as a result of increased regulatory scrutiny? Or, could your current eligibility requirements put the institution at risk of being cited for discrimination and disparate impact by examiners?In either case, it’s time to find an overdraft program that can provide you with regulatory peace of mind and an easy-to-manage, reliable source of non-interest income. Likewise, more of your members will have the opportunity to access a compliant service that helps them maintain a healthy bottom line, as well.last_img read more

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Letters to the Editor for Wednesday, Oct. 2

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionParaprofessionals deserve a pay hikeLet me start by saying that though my wife works as a paraprofessional in the Schenectady school district, this is my perspective alone and reflective of my thoughts. Superintendent Larry Spring is at it again.He cannot seem to stop himself from being a disrespectful elitist.The lesson that the city’s chief educator wants to promote is that people working entry-level jobs that require less education don’t deserve a living wage.His elitism is so blinding that he seems to have no idea of the scope of responsibilities covered by paraprofessionals throughout a given school day. He doesn’t acknowledge the physical and psychological risk of the position.Paraprofessionals help to deliver curriculum, develop lessons, are the front line in dealing with behavior management and school safety. My wife had a tooth knocked out and comes home with bruises, bites and scratches weekly, sometimes daily.She works on projects and is in contact, day and night, with the teacher about classroom issues.Because the position requires less training and education, Mr. Spring believes these contributions don’t deserve a living wage.He stated that these lowest paid positions with the worst contracts should have to give something back instead of experiencing the well-deserved increase in pay and benefits.I agreed with one thing, that more training should be provided, more opportunities to better the education and skills of all district employees. If that happened, perhaps, Mr. Spring would have known the word he was searching for was amenable, not amendable.James CiminoSchenectadyNo debate among experts on climateDr. Walcek’s Aug. 10 letter suggests we should listen to all sides of the climate change debate.There is no debate. Global climate change is a fact and is ongoing. For example, global land temperatures have increased more than 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit since the late 1800s and mostly since the 1980s (https://tinyurl.com/y6rv28z9). We’ve known the relationship between CO2 and air temperature since Arrhenius quantified it in 1896. We also know the additional CO2 comes from burning fossil fuels (by using the geochemical fingerprint of fossil fuel CO2).I know the survey Walcek writes of, and the same group published another survey two years later (in 2016) showing 81 percent of American Meteorological Society members understand humans are causing the warming (not a subset this time, total membership).When only scientists actually studying climate change are surveyed (i.e., experts), this percentage goes up to 97 percent agreeing that  global climate change is human caused (Cook et al. 2013, 2016).Walcek is right, science isn’t done by consensus. But acceptance of scientific ideas is done by consensus of scientists, and the experts have reached consensus. He knows this.David GillikinAmsterdamThe writer is a professor of geology at Union College.More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristslast_img read more

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Borr Drilling sees strong case for jack-up market recovery

first_imgAttractive rates ahead? “The combination of accelerating contracting activities, increasing number of tenders and our continued discussions with our customers provide support to our view that jack-up rig utilization levels are expected to continue to improve at an accelerated pace as we move into 2019,” Borr said.Borr feels that the recent drop in oil price might, if continued, slow down the pace of the recovery, however, the driller still finds room for optimism. Borr Drilling says that the oil price drop is not likely to significantly impact the current outstanding tenders which to a large extent have been initiated in an oil price environment that is lower than today.In support of this optimism, the driller cites a recent run of relatively high oil prices (Brent crude went over $80 in 3Q occasionally) and on strong results posted by oil majors, which could lead to growth in offshore drilling spending.“According to Rystad, global oil companies will have a free cash flow in 2018 after investments of US$590 billion, up 100% y/y and the highest level in real terms since 1979. We maintain our view that falling reserve levels, lower project breakeven costs, and strong free cash flow performance will lead to increased investments by our customers,” Borr Drilling said.Article continues below the graphBorr’s rig under construction with expected delivery dates (Source: Bassoe Analytics) Jack-up drilling company Borr Drilling is seeing an increase in jack-up rig utilization, especially in the premium jack-up rig segment, mostly in the Middle East, West Africa, Mexico, and the North Sea.Illustration only. Image source: PixabayThe driller, which currently owns 20 premium jack-ups delivered in 2001 and after, on Wednesday said that the during the third quarter of 2018, global jack-up fleet utilization continued its upward trend driven primarily by increasing utilization of modern jack-up rigs.“Global competitive jack-up rig utilization stood at 75% at the end of September, an increase of one percentage point quarter-on-quarter. Jack-up rigs built after 2010 have experienced a similar increase in competitive utilization which stood at 78% at the end of September 2018, an increase of two percentage points quarter-on-quarter and over five percentage points year-to-date,” Borr Drilling said.Per the driller, in some regions, competitive utilization is above 90%, which is starting to drive pricing higher.“We continue to notice operators’ preference for modern units as evidenced by jack-ups built after the year 2000 receiving approximately 70% of the total backlog awarded year-to-date, and the inclusion of age restrictions in various recent tenders.“Customers’ focus on modern equipment continues, and we see the introduction of age limitations on rigs for participation in several tenders, including large multi-year multi-rig tender processes. This effectively limits a large part of the available jack-up rig fleet from participating in the tenders,” Borr said.Age restriction – No gigs for old rigsThe fact that the operators are increasing in for modern jack-ups, and the fact that older rigs, if not stacked already, will find it hard to compete for future gigs, might boost rates further. If they’re both old and stacked, Borr thinks there’s hardly a chance there may be any economic proposal that could see those rigs back in action.We maintain our view that a significant number of the over 100 jack-up rigs that are more than thirty years old and uncontracted will remain uncompetitive and unlikely to return to the active fleet in the near future, or at all.Borr said: “We maintain our view that a significant number of the over 100 jack-up rigs that are more than thirty years old and uncontracted will remain uncompetitive and unlikely to return to the active fleet in the near future, or at all. In addition, 52 jack-up rigs have been cold stacked for more than two years. Taking into consideration the assumed cost of reactivating these old units, we are of the opinion that these rigs are not economically marketable in current environment.”The driller itself has taken an important role of reducing the global jack-up fleet size. Borr Drilling has recently sold the 1981-built jack-up rig “L1112” ( ex- Ed Holt”), making it the company’s 27th jack-up rig to be divested and retired from the international jack-up rig fleet by Borr and Paragon (bought by Borr) combined since the beginning of 2018.Borr today owns 20 premium jack-up rigs, six standard jack-up rigs (built before 2001) and one semi-submersible. It also has contracts for delivery of nine rigs from yards until the fourth quarter 2020. When all newbuild rigs have been delivered the fleet will consist of 36 rigs, of which 29 premium (27 built after 2011). Higher rig count, higher production? On the number of contracted rigs worldwide, Borr Drilling on Wednesday said there are currently 325 jack-ups under a contract, “up from the trough of 299 in January 2017.”The contracted number of jack-up rigs at the peak in 2014 was 420 units. Apart from the technical specs, age, and the oil price factor, Borr has also selected Saudi Arabia and Mexico examples to prove a case that, in part, an increased rig count leads to increased production, and lower rig count leads to a drop in oil output.The number of land-based and offshore drilling rigs operating in Saudi Arabia is currently 153, which is 14 rigs more than before oil prices collapsed in 2014. Saudi production has in the same period increased by 1 mbd to 10.7m, Borr said.In order to maintain or grow oil production, you need to increase rig activity.“The number of offshore rigs operating in Mexico is currently 19, while the activity levels in 2014 peaked at 52 units. Mexican production has in the same period fallen by 0.8 mbd to 1.7 mbd. These developments illustrate that in order to maintain or grow oil production, you need to increase rig activity. This is partly caused by the fact that the reservoirs become deeper and more complex and need higher drilling intensity.” Tenders accelerating – 75 gigs up for grabs“During the third quarter of 2018, on the back of strong oil prices, operators have continued to display increasing levels of confidence in their future offshore programs,” Borr said.The increased confidence in offshore programs has, Borr says, translated into a noticeable acceleration in tendering activities and direct negotiations across all regions.Citing a report by IHS, the jack-up specialist says there are currently over 75 outstanding jack up tenders equating to a total of 122 rig years on offer, a number that represents an increase of 106% since the beginning of the year. Most of these tenders are for projects starting within the next 12 months.“The combination of accelerating contracting activities, increasing number of tenders and our continued discussions with our customers provide support to our view that jack-up rig utilization levels are expected to continue to improve at an accelerated pace as we move into 2019.” On the back of what it saw as a promising tendering activity, Borr in October 2018 decided to start the activation for an additional four newbuild rigs, on speculation and without a contract secured.Current estimated fixture dayrates for jack-up rigs (Source: Bassoe Analytics)The driller, which has earlier said it won’t be locking its rigs on long-term deals on breakeven rates, now thinks it’ll be able to find employment for the four rigs within the next six months and at attractive dayrates. The company did not say what cash amount constituted an attractive dayrate.Commenting on Wednesday, Borr said: “Supported by the inquiries we today see in the market and the strong focus on modern equipment, we see a good likelihood that we in the next 6 months will be able to contract the 4 rigs currently under activation as well as further units at attractive rates. The increased activity will to a large extent be focused around markets in the Middle East, West Africa, Mexico, and the North Sea.”According to Borr drilling the underlying recovery of the jack-up market is supported by two strong fundamentals: more than 40% of the fleet is more than 30 years old; and shallow water offshore production has significantly lower cash-break even than the marginal shale oil production and also lower cost and shorter pay-backs than deepwater developments.Borr Drilling currently has 14 committed jack-up rigs in total. The company has nine rigs in operations; four in the North Sea, two in the Middle East, two in West Africa and one in South East Asia, and another five premium jack-ups contracted, all of which are expected to start operations between December 2018 and the second quarter of 2019.“During the first half of 2019, we anticipate our operating rig count to be up to 14 rigs and see upside potential to these numbers for the second half of 2019 as we continue to experience increased jack-up tendering activity and customer interest in our fleet,” Borr said.Offshore Energy Today Stafflast_img read more

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2 ‘pushers’ fall in drug bust

first_imgSuspected shabu contained in two sachetsvalued at around P10,000 were seized from 30-year-old Ruseel Palahiyao ofBarangay Imbang Grande, Passi City and 29-year-old Ariel Alumbro of BarangayAbaca, San Enrique, Iloilo, a police report showed. ILOILO City – Two suspected drug pusherswere arrested in Barangay Gines Viejo, Passi City. Palahiyao and Alumbro were nabbed afterthey sold a sachet of suspected illegal drugs to an undercover officer around 8p.m. on Oct. 11, police said. center_img The suspects were detained in the lockupcell of the Passi City police station, facing charges for violation of Republic Act 9165, or theComprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002./PNlast_img read more

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Switzerland County Robbery Suspect Held In Cincinnati

first_imgSWITZERLAND CO., Ind. – Police say one man has been arrested in Cincinnati in connection to a store robbery in Switzerland County.Justin Gosciniak, 30, of Switzerland County, was apprehended without incident Wednesday night at the Rest Inn Motel on Central Parkway in Cincinnati.Earlier in the day, police responded to a robbery report at Fisk’s General Store located at 2794 Main St. in Patriot, Indiana.Detectives say a man entered the store around noon and purchased an item. When the store clerk opened the cash drawer after ringing up the price the suspect allegedly grabbed a handful of money from the register and ran out of the store.Gosciniak remains behind bars at the Hamilton County Justice Center awaiting extradition to Indiana.last_img read more

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Bulldogs Blank Cubs In Soccer Play

first_imgThe Batesville Bulldogs competed against the Madison Bears on Saturday, September 9th, winning 4-0.The Bulldogs started out strong and worked the ball around as a unit. 20.47 on the clock, the first ball was put into the back of the net by Batesville. Garth Griffith crossed the ball high over the top of the box, Johnathan Lynch jumped up to head the ball down, and Michael Ripperger finished to goal. 11.56 Ripperger got his second goal dribbled in close to keeper and placed the ball towards the back post. 6.25 Miles Bowser played it in, Zach Harmeyer got a touch, and then Ian Yorn tapped it in around the keeper. First half ended 3-0 and we were able to outshoot them 12 to 7.Second half continued without as many shots. The last goal of the game was shot with a single touch off of Miles Bowser after a deflecting off keeper of Zach Harmeyer’s initial shot. Batesville win 4-0.Courtesy of Bulldogs Kyle Hunteman.last_img read more

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Police need help finding missing North Vernon man

first_imgNorth Vernon, IN—The Jennings County Sheriff’s Office is asking for your help in locating a missing person. Brian K. Kirby, a male, 52-year-old, 5’ 09” tall, 180 lbs. , with blue eyes, red hair, and beard.  Kirby was last seen on Friday, March 27, walking in Country Squire Lakes wearing a gray sweatshirt, blue jeans, and an orange hat. If you have any information where Brian Kirby is located, please contact Jennings County Dispatch at (812)-346-4911.last_img

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Terry ready for tough night

first_img “I played in one (final) and was very disappointed in the one in Moscow, but delighted for the side to go on and win it the way we did,” Terry said. “But as an individual you want to be playing in those games, in those moments and that’s what I’m aiming to do.” This season could provide his last opportunity to do so at Chelsea, with his contract expiring at the end of the campaign. Terry steered clear of the subject of his future. “The manager was honest with me at the start of the season and said ‘listen, if you play well and stay fit, you’ll be in the side’,” he added. “If that’s not the case, I won’t be in the side, which then puts everything else up in the air. “I’m just concentrating on playing well, which I feel as if I’m doing at the moment. “Hopefully everything else takes care of itself.” Chelsea are without Ashley Cole (ribs), but Andre Schurrle (leg) could return. Terry could be partnered by Gary Cahill in defence, with David Luiz making way following an error-strewn display against Cardiff. John Terry wants Chelsea to wrest control of Champions League Group E from Schalke by winning in Gelsenkirchen. Chelsea responded to their opening round defeat against Basle by winning at Steaua Bucharest and on Tuesday night face the first game of a potentially decisive double-header with group leaders Schalke, who have maximum points from their first two games. The Chelsea captain said: “We had a minor blip at home (against Basle). Win this game and we’re in a much stronger position. “We’re not coming here under false pretences that we’re going to come here, pick up three points easily. We understand it’s going to be a tough night.” Jose Mourinho knows the bouts with the Bundesliga’s Royal Blues could be key, but is calm about Chelsea’s position. The Chelsea boss said: “We need points over these two matches. That’s obvious. “But we’re in condition to play without thinking about finishing first or second. “I don’t think it’s yet the time to have the calculator and to be counting the number of points you need to qualify.” The Veltins Arena contest is Chelsea’s first in Germany since the 2012 Champions League final, when Terry lifted the European Cup following the penalty shootout defeat of Bayern Munich, despite being suspended for the final. It is also the teams’ first meeting since November 2007, shortly after the abrupt end of Mourinho’s first spell in charge, at the beginning of a season which ended in a Champions League final shootout loss to Manchester United. In Moscow it was Terry who missed the decisive kick and he is eager to experience a European Cup win on the field. Press Associationlast_img read more

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Rooney Salvages Point for United with Record Strike

first_imgWayne Rooney fired home a spectacular injury-time equaliser to break Bobby Charlton’s Manchester United goalscoring record and force a 1-1 draw with Stoke City in yesterday’s Premier League clash. Rooney couldn’t have chosen a better way to grab his 250th goal for the club from a free-kick with time running out after United had trailed since the early stages to an unfortunate own goal by Juan Mata.While Rooney was delighted with his personal record, the point did little to advance United’s title claims as they trail Chelsea by 11 points with the leaders due to play struggling Hull today.Rooney’s strike was appropriately enough witnessed by 1966 World Cup-winning star Charlton sitting in the director’s box. “It means a hell of a lot,” said Rooney. “It is a great honour and I am very proud. “It is difficult at the minute to be over-pleased because of the result but in the grand scheme it is huge honour. It is not something I expected when I joined. As I said before, I am proud and I hope there is more to come.”United manager Jose Mourinho said the record allowed Rooney to be termed a legend. “The record is the record. It is the record of the biggest club in England and one of the biggest in the world,” said the Portuguese coach.“Before him the record belonged to a legend of English football. Now Wayne becomes a legend of Manchester United.”United had gone behind to a lame goal in the 19th minute. Erik Pieters was picked out by Marko Arnautovic’s astute pass and his low cross was deflected past David De Gea by Mata at his near post.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

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