Project managers, increased cabinet involvement among remedies – Harmon

first_img… for slow implementation of PSIPGovernment plans to deal with the slow pace of spending allocations for public sector investment programmes (PSIP) by tightening its top-down supervision of department and ministry spending, and seconding project managers to ministries.This is according to Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, who revealed that while capital spending has been woefully slow, cabinet would now take an increased supervisory role. Addressing media operatives at a post- cabinet press conference, Minister Harmon also disclosed that the Finance Minister has provided an extended Cabinet — which includes ministers within the ministries and the permanent secretaries of the ministries — with a report of spending under the public sector investment programme for the first half of 2017.“The PSIP, with an allocation of $56.7 billion for 2017, is the main mechanism for Government spending. The report indicated that capital spending had been very slow in the initial months of 2017, but it improved significantly towards the end of the first half of the year,” Minister Harmon detailed.Harmon said Cabinet was informed about the reasons behind the slothful implementation of projects under the PSIP. He related that discussions centred on finding ways and means to assist budget agencies to improve their capital spending.Asked about the issues hindering implementation of the PSIP, Harmon said they included unfamiliarity with the procurement system by some of the permanent secretaries in the ministries.“Many of the issues we highlighted in the first quarter had to do with unfamiliarity with the procurement system by some of the permanent secretaries in the ministries,” Harmon explained.“Additionally, what they had to do was come to grips with the fact that VAT was actually being charged on some Government services; therefore, when the initial contracts were awarded, they did not include that, so that accounted for some amount of delay,” he explained.Claiming that the way contracts were awarded had previously been criticised, Harmon said procuring entities have now been doing a lot of “checking and double-checking”, which has caused delays.Project managersAccording to the Minister of State, the Government is also looking to have Project Management Officers in all the Ministries. He said that while Government has commenced this measure, not all the Ministries have had these project officers seconded to them.“Additionally, in the Ministries there was a recommendation that we employ Project Management Officers, who will be attached to each of these Ministries. And I believe that is having an effect already, because some of the Ministries already have these officers in there. And those that don’t have, the Finance Ministry (will) assist them,” Harmon explained.“We also believe that the better streamlining of the procurement process — from the time that a contract is awarded up to the time that the mobilisation is given to the contract and he starts work — what we are trying to do is to narrow that gap, so that things can happen at a faster pace.”Finance Minister Winston Jordan only recently admitted that Government is more than 30 per cent behind in its public sector investment.The Minister made this admission during the opening of the Ministry’s budget 2018 preparation and sensitization training workshop on Monday. According to the Minister, at the end of June 2017, less than 30 per cent of the money intended for expenditure on the public sector investment programme (PSIP) had been expended.In August 2015, months after entering office, the coalition Government presented its first budget. A second budget soon followed, in January, for the fiscal year 2016. And a third budget was presented in November 2016, before the start of fiscal year 2017. Government plans to unveil its fourth budget, for fiscal year 2018, in November of this year.But despite this, the continuously slow rate of Government spending, due to poor planning from budget agencies and execution from the relevant departments, remains a contributing factor to slow overall economic growth rate. It is a fact that even the Finance Minister has acknowledged.But this backlog comes against the backdrop of deficiencies in services provided by regional officials.last_img read more

Urban Rustic: Choosing and Installing a Ductless Minisplit

first_imgEditor’s note: This post is one of a series by Eric Whetzel about the design and construction of his house in Palatine, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago. A list of Eric’s previous posts appears below. For more details, see Eric’s blog, Kimchi & Kraut.   The plan for our house was to combine an HRV or an ERV (for a continuous supply of fresh air) with a ductless minisplit air-source heat pump system for our ventilation, heating, and air conditioning needs. Almost all of the projects I had read about utilized this same combination, especially here in the U.S.RELATED ARTICLESHow To Buy a Ductless MinisplitDuctless Minisplits for DIYersRules of Thumb for Ductless MinisplitsAre Ductless Minisplits Overpriced?What’s the Greenest Option for Home Heating? The only real debate, apart from specific brand options, was whether to use a single distribution head on our main floor, as opposed to installing multiple heads for a more dialed-in level of comfort (e.g., in the basement or the bedrooms). Suggested equipment was grossly oversized Our original builder had called for one head in the kitchen/family room and one in the basement, which was pretty standard for a Passive House level project. It was, therefore, pretty shocking to find that our second builder (there were two partners) and their HVAC subcontractor were suggesting a system that was grossly oversized for our needs. You can read about the details here. This was just one of many red flags that convinced us to move on and GC the project ourselves. It’s also a reminder that old habits die hard, meaning that even seasoned contractors, in any trade, need to be willing to learn new ideas and techniques if they want to truly be considered professionals and craftsmen. One of the disappointments associated with our build is, in fact, the disinterest (in some cases even outright hectoring contempt) shown by various tradespeople in our area for green building generally. Doubtless, at least a partial explanation for why much of the Midwest seems so far behind in adopting green building techniques, especially when it comes to air sealing, insulation, and indoor air quality beyond code minimum standards. Hopefully this changes significantly in the coming years. Right sizing starts with a Manual J calculation Consequently, I took Steve Knapp’s advice (from the comments section of my Q&A post on GBA) and contacted Home Energy Partners (their new name is HVAC Design Pros). Isaac responded quickly and eventually did our Manual J, confirming that we needed a much smaller system, one that is more consistent with a Passive House project. Once we were on our own, in addition to going with a Zehnder ERV and a Mitsubishi ductless minisplit air-source heat pump system, we also pursued the possibility of using a Sanden heat-pump water heater. After seeing it used on a Hammer and Hand project, we thought it was a really interesting piece of cutting-edge technology. Unfortunately, after getting a quote from Greg of Sutor Heating and Cooling, and a poor response from Sanden on questions we had about the system (they were unresponsive to emails), we decided to stick with our Zehnder, the Mitsubishi heat pump, and go with a Rheem heat-pump water heater. (Going with the Rheem saved us just over $6,000 in initial cost.) Hopefully, as it becomes more popular in the U.S., the Sanden can come down significantly in price, or maybe less expensive copycat products will someday show up on the market. Greg was initially willing to work with us, even though we were technically out of his service area. He was nothing but professional, taking the time to answer any number of technical questions and offering what proved to be sage advice regarding various details for our system. But because we were installing only the minisplit and not the Sanden, he suggested we find an installer closer to us. Finding our installer We were lucky to find Mike from Compass Heating and Air. He came out to the job site and we walked through the details together. He proved to be knowledgeable, helpful, detail-oriented, and extremely professional. Installing our Mitsubishi ductless minisplit system with Mike proved to be one of the easiest portions of our build. We never felt like we had to look over his shoulder, making sure he got details right, or that we had to constantly confirm that he did what he said he was going to do — in fact, it was the opposite: Mike’s on site, so that’s one less thing I have to worry about. Mike also confirmed what Greg and Isaac also pointed out: comfort issues may develop if we tried to get by with just one distribution head on the main floor. In fact, looking back through old emails, Greg was nice enough to walk me through some of the options employed by those trying to get by with a single head for an entire floor (sometimes even two floors), including leaving bedroom doors open throughout the day (ideally, even at night), and even the use of Tjernlund room-to-room ventilators. Again, to his credit, Greg tried to stress how important it was that homeowners have realistic expectations regarding the overall effectiveness of these techniques and options. He also was at pains to make clear how the work of any competent HVAC installer can be easily undermined by a structure that underperforms. In other words, they can design an appropriately sized HVAC system for a Passive House, but if shortcuts occur during the build and the final blower door number comes in higher than expected, or the budget for insulation gets cut, reducing R-values in the structure, then the system they designed has little chance of working as intended. Based on what he wrote, I’m guessing he has dealt with exactly this outcome in the real world — not fun for him, or the homeowners to be sure. By the time Mike got involved, we had pretty much decided to use multiple heads. In the end, we decided to delete the head in the basement, instead going with three separate heads on the main floor — the largest in the kitchen/family room, and the other two in our bedrooms. Here are the specs for our system: Hyper-Heat Compressor (30,000 Btu). MSZ-FH15NA  (kitchen/family room). MSZ-FH06NA  (master bedroom). MSZ-FH06NA  (2nd BR).   This is the Mitsubishi head in the master bedroom. The Zehnder supply is to the right. Both are covered to protect them from construction debris. Living with a ductless minisplit Having lived with the HVAC system, both the heat pump and ERV, for about a year now, our only real complaint is summer humidity, which I discussed in a previous post. This summer we’re going to try using a dedicated whole-house dehumidifier, which we think should resolve the issue. Otherwise, our system has been trouble-free. In winter, the heads do make some noise, tending to crack or pop, especially when first turning on, or when they come out of defrost mode. Although I’ve read complaints about this online, it’s never really bothered us. I remember how loud our conventional gas-fired furnace was in our last house, especially when it first turned on, so I think it’s important to remember the level of certain sounds in their appropriate context. Also, this crack or pop sound is, I suspect, louder than it otherwise would be in, say, a conventionally built home. Passive Houses are known to be significantly quieter because of all the air sealing and, in particular, all of the insulation surrounding the structure. There’s also a noticeable humming sound when the compressor is going through a defrost cycle (especially noticeable at night when the house is otherwise quiet). The heads also temporarily send out cooler air during this defrost cycle, but the cycle is short enough that it hasn’t posed any real comfort issue for us. In other words, having blocked out, or at least muffled, most of the noise from outdoors (due to extensive air sealing and extensive insulation), any noise indoors becomes much more noticeable and pronounced. The Rockwool we installed between bedrooms-bathrooms, and the kitchen-utility room for sound attenuation definitely helps in this regard (more on this in a later post). Just how quiet is a Passive House? Well, one example would be the train tracks that are just a couple of blocks away: When the windows are closed the noise from a passing train is mostly canceled out — as opposed to when the windows are open, and the train, in contrast, sounds like it’s thundering through our next door neighbor’s yard. Performance at very low temperatures As far as extreme cold outdoor temperatures are concerned, the system experienced a real test with our recent Polar Vortex weather. Mike was nice enough to check in with us the day before it started just to remind me that the system could shut down if temperatures fell below -18° F, which is what our local weather forecast was predicting. In fact, this proved entirely accurate. As temperatures eventually fell to -24°F overnight, the system was, in fact, off for a few hours (the Mitsubishi shuts off to protect itself). With the Zehnder ERV already set to low, and using just a couple of small space heaters (one in each bedroom — roughly equivalent to running two hair dryers simultaneously), it was easy to get the interior temperatures back up to 68-70°F in less than an hour (from a measured low of 61° F when we first woke up), at which point we turned off the space heaters. And it was just under two hours before the temperatures rose enough outdoors for the heat pump to turn back on. On the second day, the system again turned off, but the interruption was even shorter this time, so we didn’t even bother to turn on the space heaters. On both days the sun was shining, which definitely helped as light poured in through our south-facing windows, mainly in the kitchen and family room. Even with no additional heat, either from the heat pump or the two small space heaters, the kitchen remained a comfortable 70°F throughout that first day, regardless of the temperature outside. In the summer, when we have the AC running, we just set the desired temperature on the remotes and largely forget about the system. The three heads together, even in each individual space, have no problem keeping the house and individual rooms cool enough. In this case, it no doubt helps that we have a substantial overhang on the southern portion of our roof, mostly denying the sun an entry point into the home during the hottest days of the year (and the Suntuitive glass on our west-facing windows takes care of afternoon summer sun). Single or multiple heads? As far as using a single head to try to heat and cool the entire first floor, in our case about 1500 sq. ft., I can only say that I’m glad we chose to use multiple heads. This really hit home as I was completing interior finishes. For instance, there were times when only the head in the family room/kitchen area was running. When you walked into the bedrooms you could definitely feel the temperature difference since those heads had been turned off (roughly a 5-10° difference). As Greg, Isaac, and Mike — to their credit — were all quick to point out, for some homeowners this temperature swing would be acceptable, even something that could be calmly ignored, while for other homeowners it might well be a heartbreaking and deeply frustrating realization. Depending on how sensitive someone is to these temperature differences, it could  prove a devastating disappointment if the homeowner is expecting uniform consistency throughout their home. Also, since much of the selling point of Passive House techniques is, in the end, occupant comfort, and not just reduced energy consumption, moving from a comfortable kitchen, for example, to a bedroom that some would find outright chilly, might induce some homeowners to wonder what the point was of all that air sealing and insulating. Obviously it’s only our opinion, but if it’s at all possible to fit it into the budget, by all means utilize more than one distribution head. Even if you yourself never feel compelled to turn on any of the other heads in a multi-zone system, a spouse, one of your kids, or a guest probably will want to have the option at some point.   The compressor with finished charred siding and decorative gravel-cobblestone border. The one real risk we took with our HVAC set-up was foregoing any direct conditioning in the basement, either heat or AC. In the summer, no matter how high the temperatures outdoors, the basement stays within 5 degrees of the upstairs temperatures and humidity, so no comfort issues in this regard have presented themselves. In the winter, however, the temperature remains in the 59-61° range, with almost identical humidity readings as the main floor. Mitsubishi wall-mounted heads: beauty or beast? I’ve read that some interior designers, and even some homeowners, have expressed aesthetic concerns about the distribution heads. If you go on design-oriented websites like Houzz you can come across some really strong negative opinions on the topic. For us, they’ve never been a problem. Much like the Suntuitive glass on our west-facing windows, or even a dark or bright color on an interior accent wall, after a few days, like anything else, you just get used to it. I never found them to be ugly in the first place though. The appearance of the ductless minisplit distribution heads have never been an issue. I also grew up with hydronic metal baseboards for heat, while in apartments and our first home we had the typical floor supply and wall return grilles for a gas furnace. Point being, the details of any HVAC system are never completely absent from any living space. There’s always something that shows up visually and, typically, that needs to be cleaned at some point. In addition, the Zehnder ERV and the Mitsubishi heat pumps meant we didn’t have to use any framed soffits or duct chases (at least in the case of our specific floor plan) in order to hide bulky runs of traditional metal ductwork, typical in most homes when using a normal furnace. Unless designed with great care, these tend to be obtrusive, taking up premium ceiling, wall, or floor space. And if randomly placed simply for the convenience of the HVAC contractor, they can be downright ugly. In other words, it doesn’t really matter if you’re building conventionally or if you’re building a Passive House, all the details of an HVAC system — whether it’s individual components, or even how these components will be placed inside a structure — should be carefully thought through (again, ideally before construction begins) to address any performance or aesthetic concerns. Operation and maintenance As far as the remote controls for the individual heads, we haven’t had any issues. For the most part, we set them to either heat or AC (roughly 70° and 74° respectively), and then forget about them. And when the weather is pleasant outdoors, we take every opportunity to turn off the system completely and open windows. The system could be combined with a Kumo cloud set-up, but we’ve been happy with the hand-held remotes so far. I try to check the filters for the individual heads at least once a month (more like once a week when I was still doing interior finishes). Just as it takes much longer for the Zehnder filters to get dirty now that construction is over, and the same has proven true for the blue filters in the Mitsubishi heads. It seems like about once a month is sufficient to keep up with the dust in the house. Overall, we’ve been very happy with our HVAC set-up, including the Zehnder ERV and our Mitsubishi ductless minisplit. As long as the units don’t have any durability issues, we should be happy with these systems for many years to come.   Other posts by Eric Whetzel: Installing an ERV Choosing Windows Attic Insulation Installing an Airtight Attic Hatch Air Sealing the Exterior Sheathing Installing a Solar Electric System Prepping for a Basement Slab Building a Service Core Air Sealing the Attic Floor Ventilation Baffles Up on the Roof A Light Down Below Kneewalls, Subfloor and Exterior Walls Let the Framing Begin Details for an Insulated Foundation The Cedar Siding is Here — Let’s Burn It An Introduction to a New Passive House Projectlast_img read more

Short-handed Bolts rally to thwart Fuel Masters

first_imgPBA IMAGESShort on personnel but long in determination, Meralco rebounded from its first loss in the PBA Governors’ Cup on Friday night by pulling off what coach Norman Black feels is as the Bolts’ most satisfying win yet.“It was just an incredible effort from my guys tonight,” Black said after the Bolts—with three aces out of the roster—carved out a come-from-behind 107-104 win over Phoenix Petroleum to creep closer to a playoff berth at Smart Araneta Coliseum in Cubao.ADVERTISEMENT The next Meralco game will be on Sept. 6 against sister team TNT KaTropa, and that game would mean a seat in the playoffs should the Bolts escape with a win.“Good thing is that all three of them will be back for our next game,” Black said as Allen Durham chipped in his share with 33 points 16 rebounds and seven assists. Chris Newsome and Reynel Hugnatan also finished in twin digits with a combined 33.Phoenix paraded a new import in Brandon Brown and almost hammered out a victory.But the Fuel Masters, who broke in Jeff Chan after acquiring the left-handed gunslinger from Rain or Shine just over a week ago, couldn’t hold on to a 77-62 lead late in the third quarter and went down for the fourth straight game after a 2-0 start.Brown, playing in lieu of the injured Eugene Phelps, finished with 38 points, while Chan wound up with 27 in his biggest offensive game of the season.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding SEA Game: Active PH Volcanoes ready to erupt Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses Brown, though, missed the potential game-tying basket as time expired. Read Next SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief Flags of SEA Games countries raised at Athletes Village Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES View comments LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games “We had to deal with a lot of adversities in this game and we really needed to get a win, especially after coming off a loss,” added the multi-titled coach, who didn’t mind playing his remaining players extended minutes with an 18-day break coming their way.Garvo Lanete fired 14 points in the third period and finished with 27, effectively plugging the holes created by the absence of Baser Amer and Mike Tolomia as the Bolts completed a rally from as big as 15 points down to rise to 5-1.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAmer, a prime candidate for the Most Improved Player of the year award who has stepped up to become the team’s best point guard, and Tolomia, whom Black described as his second best point guard, are both in Kuala Lumpur playing for Gilas Pilipinas in the Southeast Asian Games.Aside from his two guards, Black also missed his best defender in Cliff Hodge, which meant that the Bolts were “not strong defensively,” allowing Phoenix to nearly get away with a victory. Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Man sworn in as lawyer by judge who sentenced him to prison as a teen 20 years agolast_img read more

Napa disappointed with Knights’ lack of ‘team effort’

first_imgCatriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. ‘Disappointment’ if no cases filed vs ‘ninja cops’ – Gordon PLAY LIST 01:09‘Disappointment’ if no cases filed vs ‘ninja cops’ – Gordon00:50Trending Articles03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games LATEST STORIES Man sworn in as lawyer by judge who sentenced him to prison as a teen 20 years ago MOST READ WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding Read Next Down at the cellar at one point of the season at 1-3, Letran has went on to rack up four straight victories before Lyceum halted that run, 75-68, on Friday.It was undeniable that Jeo Ambohot’s wrist injury, which he got in the Knights’ last game against San Sebastian, may have had a hand in the recent loss as the team scampered to fill up the hole left in the middle.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s a big factor that we lost Jeo because he’s part of our rotation. We’re losing eight points, eight rebounds, and three blocks from him,” said the multi-titled coach.However, Napa argued that it wasn’t an excuse for Letran to be in disarray, as evidenced in the defeat to the Pirates where big men Daryl Pascual and Irvin Mandreza both fouled out of the game. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netAfter Letran finished the first round with a 5-4 slate, coach Jeff Napas said there was still a lot to be desired with the way his team is playing this NCAA Season 93 men’s basketball tournament.“I’m still not satisfied because I feel that we still lack effort. We’re still not giving a total team effort. That’s going to be our focus in the second round,” the Knights mentor said in Filipino.ADVERTISEMENT UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Calisaan shocked by ejection, rues missed chance to play on home floor SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chief “We shouldn’t use that as an excuse. It’s a matter of stepping up from whoever I pull from our bench,” he said.As disheartening as the defeat was, Napa said that the Knights’ final game of the first round should serve as a lesson for his bench.“My bench players didn’t step up. We still depend on our main guys to play heavy minutes and that’s where we suffered,” he said. “But the players are still positive. We just have to adjust and check the mindset of our players, especially the ones on the bench, for them to recall their roles.”Napa ended: “Every game, we learn a lot. It’s all a matter of executing our game plan. That’s what we want to achieve, that for our bench players to compliment our main guys.”ADVERTISEMENT View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Flags of SEA Games countries raised at Athletes Villagelast_img read more

Froome’s teammate Thomas crashes out of Tour de France

first_imgRobredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Valtteri Bottas wins Austrian GP; Sebastian Vettel second El Nido residents told to vacate beach homes LATEST STORIES Britain’s Chris Froome, wearing the overall leader’s yellow jersey, talks to a team BMC rider during the eighth stage of the Tour de France cycling race over 187.5 kilometers (116.5 miles) with start in Dole and finish in Station des Rousses, France, Saturday, July 8, 2017. (Photo by PETER DEJONG / AP)CHAMBERY, France — Geraint Thomas has crashed on a descent and been taken to a local hospital with a suspected broken collarbone, depriving Chris Froome of a key Sky teammate as he seeks a fourth Tour de France title.Thomas went down on a slick road coming off the Col de la Biche with slightly more than 100 kilometers (60 miles) remaining in Stage 9 – which is considered one of the race’s toughest.ADVERTISEMENT LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR MOST READ China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Thomas began the stage second overall, 12 seconds behind Froome, despite having crashed in several other stages, including Stage 8 on Saturday, when he tumbled over a barrier on a descent.It’s been an unfortunate year for Thomas, who also exited the Giro d’Italia in May following a crash caused by a police motorbike.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsSeveral other riders also crashed in the 181.5-kilometer (113-mile) stage from Nantua to Chambery.Robert Gesink of Team Lotto Jumbo and Manuele Mori of UAE Team Emirates were also forced to abandon. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

Sachin Tendulkar retorts, says his absence from Parliament is due to family emergency

first_imgSachin Tendulkar speaks during a felicitation programme for the Indian contingent for the Commonwealth Games 2014 in New Delhi on Friday, August 8, 2014. Photo: PTI.Sachin Tendulkar on Friday said that his absence from Parliament has been discussed too much and he doesn’t mean to disrespect any institution.Sachin cleared the air and said that his absence in Parliament is due to a family emergency.”My absence in Parliament is discussed. There is an emergency in my family. My absence in Delhi was due to my brother’s surgery,” he said. Sachin Tendulkar’s elder brother Ajit undergoes bypass surgery Speaking at a sports function in Vigyan Bhawan not far away from Parliament, he said when he was back from England he wanted to be in Delhi. In a veiled reference to the raging discussion about him in Parliament and outside by media, he said ” They are discussing everything about you in the media but I think you should be focussed on your job and nothing else”.He was addressing the medal winners of the Commonwealth Games at a function organised by the Sports Ministry.”I feel happy about my presence in Delhi”, the batting legend said.”My father once told me that there will be a lot of arms that will try to pull you down but as long as you stay in the right direction you will see that at one point of time you have gone beyond them. They will join hands to praise you” he said in his address to the athletes.”Not always everyone will like you. There will be obstructions but the energy should always be focussed on doing the right things and not get distracted”, the batting icon said. Tendulkar, Rekha questioned over Rajya Sabha absence advertisement”As sportspersons, your performance will be analysed and criticised. But one thing that outsiders can’t judge is the satisfaction that you will get when you give your 100 per cent. If you give 100 per cent and still the opposition team wins, you should not feel bad about it”, Tendulkar said.”I think it is important to accept everything with humility. Stay humble and stay grounded. Try to achieve more for India and we will all be behind you”Tendulkar and Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal took turns to give away the awards at the felicitation function, organised by the Sports Authority of India.A large contingent of media personnel, who had gathered at the venue were surprised to see Tendulkar on the dais as invitation letter had not mentioned anything about his presence.The batting legend, dressed in a black-and-white check shirt and black trousers was seen exchanging greetings as he handed over the awards to the medal winners, which included stars such as boxer Vijender Singh, shooters Gagan Narang and Jitu Rai and shuttlers P. Kashyap and P.V. Sindhu.Apart from Tendulkar and Sonowal, Minister of State for home affairs, Kiren Rijiju, BJP leader and sports administrator Anurag Thakur, Sports Secretary Ajit Sharan and SAI DG Jiji Thomson were also on the dais.India had finished in the fifth position with a total haul of 64 medals, including 15 gold, at the Glasgow Games.Tendulkar and yesteryears Bollywood star Rekha earlier the day came under attack in the Upper House for attending the House for only three and seven days, respectively, since their nomination two years back.P. Rajeeve of CPI-M raised the issue of long-duration absence of celebrities as he wanted to know whether they have sought permission for it.Responding to this, Deputy Chairman P.J. Kurien said Rajeeve and some other members had raised the issue earlier but there was no violation of the rules.”As per Article 104 of the Constitution, if a member is absent from either House of Parliament for a period of 60 days then the seat is considered vacant. In case of Sachin Tendulkar, he has not attended the Parliament for 40 days whereas Rekha’s absence is less than this,” he observed.Kurien said Tendulkar was nominated to the Upper House in April 2012 and has attended the session for three days. “Last time he had come to the House on December 13, 2013,” he said.last_img read more

10 months agoBrighton midfielder Solly March on Chelsea defeat: We had nothing to lose

first_imgBrighton midfielder Solly March on Chelsea defeat: We had nothing to loseby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveBrighton midfielder Solly March from positives from defeat at home to Chelsea.March pulled a goal back for the Seagulls after first-half strikes from Pedro and Eden Hazard, and Hughton decided to focus on his team’s second-half reaction, as they created chances to equalise against the Blues.March said, “We had nothing to lose. We wanted to get at them and show them that we were better in the second half.“We did that after the break and we won the half. But at the end of the day it wasn’t good enough, so we’re a bit disappointed.“I think we looked okay at times, but perhaps we tried forcing it too much with our final ball and when we got into the final third.“We will work on that for the next game and hopefully we will improve.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

Fisheries Sector To Benefit From Major Aquaculture Project

first_img The project targets the production of the imported Silver Tilapia species of fresh water fish Story Highlights The pilot project demonstrates the possibility of double growth rates for the Silver Tilapia The initiative is spearheaded by newly established entity, Sunshine Aquaculture Limited The fisheries sector is poised to benefit significantly from a multimillion dollar aquaculture project, which targets the production of the imported Silver Tilapia species of fresh water fish, for sale to the local and overseas markets.The initiative, for which a four-month $10 million pilot project was recently concluded, is spearheaded by newly established entity, Sunshine Aquaculture Limited, in partnership with Aqua Wilson Farm, a 100-acre fresh water fish sanctuary in Hill Run, St. Catherine.Sunshine Aquaculture is seeking to introduce the new Silver Tilapia  as well as improved nutrition and management processes within the local sector, which should serve to complement the indigenous Red Tilapia, regarded as a local culinary favourite, and boost the local industry’s output, enabling it to generate earnings of up to US$200 million per annum.Agriculture and Fisheries Minister, Hon. Roger Clarke, and other officials of the Ministry were taken on a tour of the Aqua Wilson Farm, on August 2, to view the operations.Sunshine Aquaculture Director, Mark Wildish, said the pilot project demonstrates the possibility of double growth rates for the Silver Tilapia, based on the results of the pilot project, conducted at their Kew Park Farm in Westmoreland, and Aqua Wilson Farm.He informed that fingerlings at Kew Park grew from 26 grams to 400 grams in 66 days, while those at Aqua Wilson recorded growth of up to 322 grams over the same duration. This contrasts sharply to the 107 days it takes the Red Tilapia fingerling to grow to 26 grams, and 180 days to get to 322 grams.“The main advantage of the Silver Tilapia is that through improved efficiencies, we can significantly reduce the cost of production, and this will allow a lower price for the consumer. We expect that the Jamaica Tilapia will continue to sell. But, our aim is to make sure we can compete with much of the frozen fish which currently comes in from abroad, like the Mangrove Snapper and Grunt,”  Mr. Wildish said.Noting that local production declined to 800 tonnes in 2012, Mr. Wildish is optimistic that introduction of the Silver Tilapia will boost output to well over 4,000 tonnes within three years, with the potential to generate earnings of between US$150 million and  US$200 million“Jamaica has great competitive advantage in fish…we have great land, great water, and we have already got a lot of the existing farms. In a study done as to the aquaculture potential of Jamaica, it is not impossible to imagine Jamaica producing 50,000 tonnes of Tilapia  a year,”  he added.Mr. Wildish disclosed plans by Sunshine Aquaculture to commence the development of a fish nursery by year end, with some US$10 million being earmarked for investment in the first phase.“It will be based in Westmorland. But most of the farming is likely to be done, initially, on the Clarendon and St. Catherine plains, where most of the existing farms are, because we intend to contract farms with existing farmers,” he informed.Mr. Wildish said that the Minister (of Agriculture and Fisheries) “has been very supportive” of the venture.Meanwhile,  Minister Clarke welcomed the initiative,  and emphasized that the project demonstrates that local Tilapia production can be significantly advanced with proper genetics and proper feeding systems, thus ensuring that “we can compete in a significant way” in the global market.“As far as marine fish (is concerned), we are being challenged. The fact (is) that…with all that we have been doing with our sanctuaries, the stock is still depleting, and if you look worldwide, aquaculture is growing in a significant way. We must catch up with the world, because that is where our future lies,” the Minister said.Mr. Clarke gave an undertaking to work with Sunshine Aquaculture and other industry stakeholders in safeguarding and enhancing the sector’s output. This, he added, is part of the administration’s efforts in consolidating the nation’s food security.“In our programme and our policy, we want Jamaicans to be able to access nutritious foods at a more affordable rate, and this (aquaculture) is one area through which I believe we are going to make a difference,” the Minister said.Owner and operator of Aqua Wilson Farm, Noel Wilson, said he was approached by Mr. Wildish, who was seeking a partner to undertake the pilot project, and willingly consented to participate in the venture.Pointing out that prior to participating in the pilot project, he only reared Red Tilapia, Mr. Wilson said he intends to remain in Silver Tilapia production.Mr. Wilson, who noted that 60 per cent of his farm is currently under production, said he currently employs approximately 10 persons, and can produce as much as 10 tonnes of fish per month.“We see the pilot project helping to advance our operations greatly. I plan to remain with Sunshine and rear the Silver Tilapia, which is much cheaper to grow and would enable us to be very competitive against other exporters,” he said.Mr. Wilson also disclosed that he plans to convert another 20 acres of his property into fish ponds within the next two months.last_img read more

Say NO to mass immigration ads pulled Bernier blames leftist mob

first_imgVANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – Citing overwhelming public backlash, Pattison Outdoor Advertising is removing a series of nation-wide ads promoting People’s Party of Canada leader Maxime Bernier, and his stance on immigration.The billboards — featuring Bernier’s photo and the words “say NO to mass immigration” — had been a source of controversy after they popped up in Vancouver, Calgary, Halifax, and Regina. The ads were paid for by True North Strong and Free Advertising Corp., a registered third party.For Anne Cooper, who lives in East Vancouver near where one of the billboards popped up, the message doesn’t reflect what she thinks Canada should be.“I don’t want that, I don’t want people attacking me or my family — you know, no to nuclear families or no to this, no I don’t want that,” she said.And that’s all she wrote for now. The ad is gone. @NEWS957 pic.twitter.com/zdkZeKKdOM— Dave Heintzman (@HEINTZMANEWS957) August 26, 2019Early Sunday, Pattison said in a statement the campaign did not contravene the Canadian Code of Advertising Standards, and that it was not up to the company to be “the judge or arbiter of what the public can or cannot see.”But hours later, company president Randy Otto reversed course, saying “it was never my or Pattison Outdoor’s intention to offend, alienate or in any way insult the public by allowing this ad to be run.”Otto promised to review the company’s advocacy guidelines relating to political messaging, and inform True North Advertising the ads will be removed as soon as possible.“Fantastic, well good for them if they’re going to take a stand,” Cooper said after learning the billboards were being taken down due to public backlash. “It shows the power of the people.”Well that was fast. A contractor is already here to cover up the Bernier billboard. A dog walker who lives in this area says she’s fine with it, since the message runs counter to her values @NEWS1130 pic.twitter.com/x2N9uwUaXz— Kurtis Doering (@KDnewsguy) August 26, 2019Reacting to the statement on Twitter, Bernier accused the company of caving in to the “leftist mob”, adding “the authoritarian Left want to censor and silence anyone who disagrees with them. They will fail.”The billboards will be removed after censorship calls from the leftist mob. The PPC is the only party that rejects mass immigration and proposes to have fewer, better integrated immigrants who fulfill our economic needs.What do you think? Vote and RT. https://t.co/YANzKkJj8c— Maxime Bernier (@MaximeBernier) August 25, 2019The People Party of Canada is so far not being allowed to participate in the upcoming federal leaders’ debates. A final decision on Bernier participation will be made by mid-September.last_img read more

Can College Football Schedules Be Fixed

FiveThirtyEight Embed Code Welcome to the latest episode of Hot Takedown, FiveThirtyEight’s sports podcast. On this week’s episode (Aug. 22, 2017), we ponder the Indiana Pacers’ allegations that the Los Angeles Lakers tampered with the Pacers by trying to lure Paul George to L.A. Next, we’re joined by SB Nation writer Bill Connelly to preview college football. We talk about the validity of preseason polls, the lack of parity in NCAA football, and which metrics are most important. Plus, a significant digit on Felix Hernandez.Here are links to what we discussed during the show:Tom Ziller at SB Nation wrote about whether tampering should still matter in the NBA.Check out more of Bill Connelly’s work in SB Nation’s 2017 College Football Preview.On Monday, the Associated Press released its first poll of the college football season, and results were mixed, according to The Ringer’s Shaker Samman.Significant Digit: 51.8, the number of wins above replacement that Felix Hernandez has produced in years the Mariners did not make the division series of the playoffs. More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed read more