Trouble over bridge

first_imgScottish and Southern Energy (SSE) will restore power to the lights on the Northern side of Magdalen Bridge next week after a power fault which has left it in darkness for more than a month.The company are now in breach of statutory requirements as the repair has not been rectified, despite stipulations that “energy contractors must repair street lighting faults within 20 working days” of the initial referral.As a result of enquiries made by Cherwell and City Councillor Tony Brett, it has been announced that the required works will take place late next week.Tony Brett, a Liberal Democrat Councillor for Carfax, originally made a complaint to the County Council on the 9th December and repeatedly contacted the Council about the problem. Brett expressed concern that there may be “tragic consequences” if “without street lighting a cyclist in dark clothing or lights pulls out and a car, or worse, bus driver, doesn’t see them,” and asked that the matter be given priority.Both female and male students have reported feeling increasingly fearful when crossing the bridge in darkness. “It feels much less safe at night”, Heidi Grek, a visiting student currently living near Cowley Road, told Cherwell. “I try to avoid walking home alone but that’s not always possible.”A number of students also admit to cycling without bike lights or safety measures.A spokesperson for the County Council has confirmed that SSE will be penalised, stating, “We will claim penalty payments at £10 a day, for every day over the 20 working days the fault is outstanding.”The fine seems insufficient to some of those affected. “It just seems to be a nominal penalty”, commented Grek. “£10 per day isn’t a lot to a company whose individual shares routinely trade at ten times that.”Anger remains over the time it has taken SSE to rectify the fault. Councillor Brett commented, “It’s a real shame this repair has taken such a long time, leaving Magdalen Bridge so dangerous at this late-dawn and early-dusk time of the year. “I’d like to know why SSE didn’t repair the fault before term started as I know that many students feel unsafe enough as it is walking over the bridge, without having to do it in the dark.”last_img read more

CSLC introduces language element to Humans Vs Vampires

first_imgBeginning today, Notre Dame’s campus will be the site of an epic battle between humans and vampires.Tuesday marks the first day of the annual Humans vs. Vampires game, sponsored by the Center for the Study of Languages and Cultures (CSLC). According to Joachim Castellano, technology and administrative program manager for the CSLC, the game will run through Saturday and ends with an awards ceremony Sunday.“Basically, it’s a game of tag,” Castellano said. “There are two teams, the Humans and the Vampires, and every student who participates will be assigned to one team. [Each team] has to kill each other. There are five missions throughout the games that take place at night, so [students] will see a lot of people running around shooting NERF guns at each other.”According to Castellano, this is the second year the CSLC has sponsored the event. Before the CSLC took over the event, it was sponsored by the Student Activities Office (SAO), he said.Denise Ayo, assistant director for academic programs for the CSLC, said after the center took over the game, they began to incorporate foreign language elements into game play.“For example, [players] receive clues or directions in, for example, German or another foreign language offered at Notre Dame,” Ayo said. “Last year, they had [a mission] where you had to take a big heavy box of dirt across campus. When the humans arrived to figure out their mission, the person there to describe the mission only spoke Korean. So they were sitting there talking in Korean. Also, there are hidden items that will help [members of the team] and give [players] immunity, but the riddles to find [these items] will be in a foreign language.”Originally Humans vs. Zombies was played on Notre Dame’s campus, Ayo said. However, after the CSLC became involved with the game, the center changed the game to Humans vs. Vampires, as Bram Stoker’s “Dracula” is one of the most widely translated texts in the world.“You can find ‘Dracula’ in Catalan, German, French — all the languages we teach and have instructors here that speak the language,” she said. “That’s why we made the switch from zombies to vampires.”According to Ayo, the “Dracula” aspect of the game and the foreign language aspect of the game intersect throughout play time and during the awards ceremony.“[The game] culminates in a public reading of Dracula in the various languages, which is really exciting,” Ayo said. “It’s the biggest event where students can really interact with the professors. We have professors reading from the texts, we have peer tutors reading from the text, we have foreign language teaching assistants reading from the texts. It’s a great way to integrate students who don’t come into [the CSLC] normally and they come to get their awards and pizza and talk about the game and then they are exposed to foreign language.”Castellano said the main goal of the CSLC is to get students involved with foreign languages. Though the foreign language requirement varies depending on a student’s college, the CSLC wants to engage all students in the study of languages, and this game is a way for the CSLC to reach out to every student, regardless of their language requirement, or lack thereof.“We want students to be passionate about learning a foreign language, so we try to expose students to learning and practicing a language outside of the classroom,” Castellano said. “For anyone who really takes up a foreign language, there are a lot of opportunities to fall in love with it when you are using it in real life. It becomes less of an academic exercise and more like something that is part of everyday life.”By incorporating elements of foreign language into a fun game, Castellano said he believes the center can reach more students.“This event creates a space to use languages in a game-like environment, and we are basically trying to say to Notre Dame students that learning a language is a lot of fun — it is more than what you do in the classroom, and it can open up your world to different opportunities in your life,” he said. “It might start with a Humans vs. Vampires game, but hopefully it will inspire students to study foreign language more deeply and it may lead them to a future career or future life.”Tags: CSLC, Dracula, German, language, vampires, zombieslast_img read more

March Freeze Hits Georgia Crops Hard

first_imgA month after a bitter early-February freeze, Georgia farmers have taken it on the chinagain. Another deep freeze and damaging winds blasted the state’s vegetable, fruit andgrain crops March 8-9.”Every county, every field and every stage of Vidalia onions have been hurt,”said Rick Hartley, Toombs County director of the University of Georgia Extension Service.”The total impact to Georgia’s economy could exceed $100 million in losses.”Hartley said freeze itself may not have badly damaged Vidalia onions.”The onions are alive but suffered extreme damage to their leaves,” he said.”The wind and sand caused more physical damage than the cold, but the cold damagewon’t be visible for several weeks.”Even onions that stay healthy may be lost in the end, Hartley said.”March temperatures of 20 degrees and a chill factor of zero degrees generallytrigger the reproductive mechanism in Vidalia onions,” he said. “This causesthem to flower,” he said. “And onions which flower aren’t consideredharvestable.”Vidalia onion farmers “could lose as much as $50 million,” Hartley said, ifthe seed stems show up as growers fear. “They’ve already lost half of a 14,000-acrecrop.”Terry Kelley, an Extension vegetable specialist in Tifton, agreed that the seed-stemthreat is Vidalia onion growers’ main concern from the latest freeze.”But I’m still concerned that it may have hurt us worse than we think,” hesaid. “I don’t think we’ve seen all the damage yet from the February freeze.”The freeze hit other vegetables hard, too.”Much of the mustard and turnip greens were replanted after the last freeze,”Kelley said. “As young and tender as these plants were, we could see someproblems.”Collards, cabbage and kale crops were also damaged, he said, but not as much as themustard and turnips. Like onions, collards and cabbage may have problems with floweringlater.”We’re going to have a later crop of just about every winter vegetable,” hesaid. “We just haven’t had the temperatures for development.”The state’s peaches will be hard-pressed to appear as more than a shadow of a normalcrop.”What percent of a crop we’ll have, we don’t know,” said M.E.”Butch” Ferree, an Extension peach specialist in Fort Valley. “Somevarieties are totally wiped out, and we can find buds on others.”Assessing the peach crop damage is tough, he said.”It’s not easy to see. We have to look at a tiny flower,” he said. “Andit’s a miracle that we’ve got something to look at, with the weather we’ve had.”It will be a few days before we can know the damage any better,” he said.”And then we’ve got four more weeks of weather that could hurt us. We don’t feel likewe’re out of the woods until Easter.”Brooks County Extension Director Johnny Whiddon, whose farmers are among the state’stop peach growers, said losses would likely be heavy.”We really won’t know until the blooms that were killed fall off and we can get abetter look at it,” Whiddon said. “But the best projection we can make right nowputs (Brooks County) losses at 75 percent to 80 percent.”Dewey Lee, an Extension grains specialist in Tifton, said the state’s wheat cropappears to have been damaged.”We won’t know for several more days exactly how much of the crop was hurt,”he said.Wheat plants with grain heads eight to 10 inches above the soil were most affected.”It’s most likely the grain heads froze,” he said. Once they freeze, they die.But wheat is able to make up for lost grain heads. “Just because we lose, forexample, 80 percent of the grain heads from freezing,” he said, “doesn’tmean we’ll lose the same percentage of our yield.”last_img read more

Mineola Man Convicted of Manslaughter in Fatal Crash

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A cement truck driver was convicted Wednesday of killing a 45-year-old school bus driver and seriously injuring a 64-year-old attendant in a crash in Locust Valley two years ago.A Nassau County jury found Raymond Ragen guilty of manslaughter and assault, but acquitted him of vehicular homicide and vehicular manslaughter.Authorities said the 45-year-old was driving his truck eastbound on Oyster Bay Road when he crashed into a Long Island Rail Road overpass near Matinecock Court on July 23, 2012.The truck then hit a westbound school bus, killing its driver, 45-year-old Jorge Guevara of Locust Valley. Four boys and a 64-year-old man on the bus were treated for minor injuries.Ragen faces 5-to-15 years in prison on the manslaughter conviction when he’s sentenced May 23 by Judge William Donnino.last_img

Is my financial adviser shady?

first_img Share Share 243 Views   no discussions Share Tweetcenter_img Money Magazine) — My financial adviser recently moved to another company and has invested my IRA in a program he calls “active trading.” He assures me that the professionals doing the trading know how to make considered movements based on market conditions. I’m not so sure. What’s your advice? — Gary S., Augusta, MaineI think you’re absolutely right to be wary about this arrangement. Granted, I don’t know how long you’ve worked with this adviser, what sort of relationship you have with him and how much you feel you trust him.But I’ve seen investors separated from their money so many ways over the years — from Bernie Madoff-type ripoffs to auction-rate preferred securities that were pitched as money fund equivalents to hedge funds run by supposed superstars that imploded — that simple assurances that these guys know what they’re doing just won’t cut it.What you need are real answers to serious questions. And if your retirement stash is already invested with these traders, you need the answers pronto. What kind of questions am I talking about?Well, to start with who are these professionals? What are their qualifications? Do they work for the same firm as your adviser? Or do they work for an outside firm that invests money for your adviser’s firm and others? How did your adviser choose this program, and what others were considered? Why, specifically, does your adviser see this program as a fit for your IRA?How to safely invest your retirement cashYou’ll also want to know exactly what these people are trading. Stocks, bonds, options, precious metals, pork belly futures? How often do they buy and sell; just how “active” are they? Do they have a strategy? How long have they been following it and what are their performance results in both up and down markets? Is their track record audited? And how much are you paying for their services?Is it an annual fee based on a percentage of assets they oversee? If so, what’s the charge — 1% a year, 2% a year, more, less? Do they also get a percentage of any trading profits? (Many hedge funds operate on “2 + 20” basis — that is, 2% of assets plus 20% of profits.)And does your adviser get a portion of the traders’ fees — or does he collect his own on top of the traders’ take? And about those trades — do you pay separately for them or are they included in the management fee?Ultimately, you want to know what you’re paying in total fees on your account. Once you start getting much above 1% or so a year, I think you have to wonder whether it’s possible to generate performance superior enough to compensate for the drag of fees.A reputable adviser should be happy to answer such questions. But you can also find answers to most of these questions by checking out the “ADV” form that advisory firms are required to file with the Securities and Exchange Commission or state securities office.The form comes in two parts. You should read both, but it’s part 2 that provides info on the services offered, fees, the background of the advisors, potential conflicts of interest and describes run-ins, if any, with regulators.Starting this year, investment advisers are required to provide plain-English versions of part 2 of the ADV, so it shouldn’t be a problem for your adviser to give you one for whichever firm is running this investment program (and his own firm, if they’re not one and the same).For more on what’s in the ADV form, how to get one on your own and how to evaluate advisors, click here and here. While you’re at it, make sure you know where your investment stash is being held.Get your retirement back on trackNeither your adviser nor the traders should have direct access to the balance in your account. Rather, your account should be overseen by an independent trustee, such as a trust company or custodian bank.You should also get statements from that trustee in addition to any you might receive from your adviser or his firm. That reduces the chances of an unscrupulous adviser fooling you with fake performance reports.I have to tell you that even if this operation proves to be on the up and up — and I’m not suggesting you’ll find otherwise — I’d still be wary of having a significant portion of my retirement savings riding on someone’s trading prowess.The more an investor trades, the more costs he or she incurs, which makes it harder to generate enough extra return to outweigh the effects of those costs.That’s one reason why it’s so tough for actively managed funds to outperform basic market indexes over the long-term after taking fees and risk into account. And even if your adviser shows you an impressive performance record racked up by these traders, I’d still have reservations.Fact is, it’s very difficult to tell how much of ostensibly superior performance is the result of skill vs. luck, not to mention how much is the result of a particular strategy being well suited for a particular set of market conditions that may or may not prevail in the future. (For an insightful look at this issue, check out this recent analysis titled Untangling Skill and Luck by Legg Mason chief investment strategist Michael Mauboussin.)All of which is to say that, if this were my money, I’d be more inclined to invest it in a way that gets the most of the gains the financial markets deliver over the long term than to bet on the ability of traders to somehow enhance the markets’ underlying return.And the best way to harness the power of the markets, while managing risk, is to create a diversified portfolio of stocks and bonds (or stock funds and bond funds) and keep costs down.I think the best way to do that is to build a portfolio of low-cost index funds, devoting enough to stocks to have a decent shot at long-term capital growth and enough to bonds to provide stability and income.For more on how to settle on a mix that makes sense for you, you can read our MONEY 101 lesson on Asset Allocation and check out our Fix Your Mix calculator.If, after establishing such a core portfolio with your IRA and other retirement savings, you feel you have enough extra money you want to devote to a strategy with more panache, fine.But even then I think you have to ask yourself (and your adviser) what’s so special about this particular trading program when there are so many investment pros peddling all manner of strategies.So start asking those questions I outlined above. If the answers don’t completely assuage the doubts that you obviously have about this program, maybe you need another strategy or another adviser, or both. Financial PlanningLifestyleMoney Is my financial adviser shady? by: – February 21, 2011 Sharing is caring!last_img read more

Paul John Wiegand

first_imgPaul John Wiegand was the youngest of three children born to the late Rev. J.C. Wiegand and his wife Laura. Paul was born on Nov. 16, 1921 in Celina, Ohio. In 1926 the Wiegand family moved from Ohio to Dillsboro, Indiana. Paul attended and graduated from Dillsboro High School in 1939. After High School he attended Barber College in Indianapolis. From 1942 to 1946 he served his Country in the U.S. Navy. Most of his service time was spent in the Pacific theatre. After returning home from the war he continued his Barber skills working in Aurora, Indiana. Paul was employed at Indiana Michigan Electric Co. from 1955 until he retired in 1983. He remained a part time Barber until he closed his shop in 2005. Paul has been a member of St. John Lutheran Church in Aurora since the 1950’s. He also served as a board member for River View Cemetery Association for a number of years.On April 26, 1950 Paul married Adelyn Lorraine Brauer, she precedes him in death. Surviving sons, Terry Wiegand (Tammy) of Osgood, IN; John Wiegand (Kristy) of Newburgh, IN; Vance Wiegand (Connie) of Taylor Mill, KY; Paul also has five grandchildren, Kimberly (David) Penrod, Nicholas Wiegand, Noelle Wiegand, Corey Green, Alison Wiegand, and great grandson, Robert Green.He was preceded in death by parents, John Christian Wiegand, Laura Wiegand.Friends will be received Tuesday, August 30, 2016, 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm at the Rullman Hunger Funeral Home, Aurora, Indiana.Services will be held at St. John Lutheran Church Aurora, 223 Mechanic Street, Aurora, IN., Wednesday at 11:00 am with Pastor Edward Davis, officiating.Interment will follow in the Riverview Cemetery, Aurora, IN. Military graveside services will be conducted by members of local Veterans Service Organizations.Contributions may be made to the Aurora Life Squad, St Johns Lutheran Church or Our Hospice of South Central Indiana. If unable to attend, please call the funeral home office at (812) 926-1450 and we will notify the family of your donation with a card.Our family would like to thank the staff of Ridgewood Health Campus, and Our Hospice of South Central Indiana for the care and compassion they have given Paul.Visit: www.rullmans.comlast_img read more