…as protestors picket AFC Headquarters…told VAT here to stayThe public education system is in a dire state and is being academically outperformed by private schools; hence, the need for those institutions.This is according to educator Swami Aksharananda. He made the comment while at a protest against Value Added Tax (VAT) on education on Monday in front of the Alliance For Change (AFC) headquarters.“There are many challenges in the public school system, everybody admits this. There is no one in this country who thinks that it is where it’s supposed to be…but as far as the public schools – if you have an objective analysis, we are in a dire state as far as public education is concerned and the ability to deliver education, it is very serious,” Swami Aksharananda told this publication. While addressing the media, he added that parents were choosing the private education system as opposed to the public education system mainly from a performance standpoint. He noted that private schools were most of the times outperforming the government schools in both the National Grade Six Assessment (NSGA) and the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) examinations.“If you look at the results of education in this country, for example the NGSA, all the top results come from private schools, which is an indication of [their better performance]. People are smart. People know where they get their results and they go there, and it is not only because people can afford, but people will make the additional sacrifice for what they consider a better value for their money,” the educator opined.When asked about the suggestion of the institutions absorbing the VAT, Swami Aksharananda, who operates the Saraswati Vidya Niketan (SVN) – one of the country’s top performing secondary schools, explained that it was not legally possible for those institutions to do so. He added that by making that suggestion, there was now the idea of private schools making large profits and that was far from the truth.In March, Finance Minister Winston Jordan said that VAT on private education was not a move to target the institutions, rather it was a move for the Government to broaden the country’s tax base, and help fund the country’s expenditure shortfall in the 2017 $250 billion budget.A parent, Shamal Zalamuddin said he refused to pay VAT on education and noted that the tax imposition was not only on tuition fees, as it extended to all educational materials inclusive of pens, pencils and erasers. This, he notes, not only affects the private school students, but also those attending public schools as well.“There is hardly any country in the world that pays VAT on education or health services or social services. My son goes to a private school, yes; I paid his fees today without paying any VAT. I am not going to pay the VAT and if they (the school) rebel, then I am prepared to take him out and I am prepared to home-school him,” Zalamuddin told reporters.The protesters told the media that they chose to exercise their constitutional right in front of the AFC headquarters, since they were informed of an executive meeting at the office. They also noted that there were some members of the AFC who were sympathetic to their plight, so they were seeking an audience with them.During the protest, AFC representatives from the office went out and engaged the protesters, informing them that they would have to be protesting for the next three terms. One representative said that the protesters would have to remain there since the VAT on education was there to stay. He added that although he was an AFC Youth Executive, he had protested against the parking meter project, but supported the imposition of VAT on education.After failed attempts to contact AFC Leader and Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman, Guyana Times contacted the party’s former head, Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan, for an update on the party’s position on the tax imposition only to be told: “I don’t speak to the Guyana Times, y’all are asses.”Parliamentary supportMeanwhile, the AFC will be put to the test when the parliamentary Opposition People’s Progressive Party (PPP) tables a motion to repeal the 14 per cent VAT on private education at the upcoming sitting of the National Assembly on May 8.Expectations are high that the junior partner in the coalition APNU/AFC Administration would now support the motion, given its solidarity with stakeholders who have for weeks been calling on Government to remove the education tax.Cabinet recently ruled that the VAT on private education would remain for the rest of the year, but it would be reviewed for the 2018 National Budget.The AFC has signalled its intention to challenge Government’s collective decision and push for an earlier review.
0Shares0000Barcelona’s Spanish defender Gerard Pique came through Barca’s youth system but moved to United, aged 17, before struggling with homesickness during four difficult years at Old Trafford © AFP/File / Pau BarrenaBARCELONA, Spain, Mar 23 – Barcelona defender Gerard Pique has told how his career was kickstarted by a rant from Roy Keane and then given a new lease of life when Alex Ferguson let him leave Manchester United.Pique came through Barca’s youth system but moved to United, aged 17, before struggling with homesickness during four difficult years at Old Trafford. Now a World Cup champion and four-time Champions League winner, Pique has explained how at United his phone once went off in the changing room, prompting Keane to let loose.“It’s dead quiet. All of a sudden, you could hear this little vibration. Very soft,” Pique told the Players’ Tribune.“I realise it’s me. It’s my cell phone. I left it on vibrate, and it’s in the pocket of my pants, stuffed in the clothes bag that’s hanging right behind Roy’s head.”Pique continued: “He screams out to everybody, ‘Whose phone is that?!’ Silence. He asks again. Silence. He asks a third time. ‘Whose. Bloody. F*****g. Phone. Is. That?!’ Finally, I spoke up, like a little boy. Very softly, I said, ‘I’m so sorry. It’s mine.’”Pique added: “Roy lost his mind! He went nuts in front of everybody! It was incredible. I almost shit myself. But it was a good lesson.”With Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand ahead of him, Pique never managed to hold down a place at United and, in 2008, Ferguson sanctioned his return to Barcelona.“I was honest with him (Ferguson),” Pique said. “I said, ‘Listen, I feel like I’ve lost your trust. Barcelona is my home. I want to go back. I hope you will let me go.’”Pique thought he would face his boyhood team when United then drew Barca in the Champions League but, before the semi-final, Ferguson paid a visit to the defender’s hotel room.“I knew something was going on, because he never came to see players before the match,” Pique said.“I opened the door and he said, ‘Gerard, I regret to inform you that I can’t play you today. The deal is almost done. If I play you, and you have a bad game, they’ll say it’s because you’re headed to Barcelona. So I can’t put you in. I just want you to know why.’“The truth is, I was pretty devastated. Even though I wanted to go home, I was ready to give everything for United and Sir Alex in that match. It was my dream to play at the Camp Nou in the Champions League.“It hurt very badly. But in the end, Sir Alex made the right decision.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)
Once I knew my girls were safe, my next concern was my Gramma. She lived alone, but thankfully only a couple of miles away. Fearing the worst, I was relieved to find the only casualty was the fall of one knickknack. Later that evening when my dad stopped by to check on his granddaughters, he asked if I heard where the epicenter was. My answer, partly in jest was, “Under this house.” As I was feeding my 2 1/2-month-old daughter, with my 3-year-old daughter seated next to me on the couch,I saw a bright flash of light. Being a native Californian I am no stranger to earthquakes, but the rumbling that ensued was the likes of nothing I had ever experienced. The sounds of glass breaking and appliances shifting off their foundations were unbelievably unnerving. I’m not sure if it was the fact that it had been several years since I felt the uncertainty that comes with an earthquake, or if my motherly instincts were on overdrive, but all I could think to do was use my body to shield my daughters and wait for the post-earthquake quiet. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Donegal-based agribusiness Donegal Investment Group Plc. has announced it will discontinue the payment of dividends to its shareholders ‘for the foreseeable future’.The group will be switching payments to a more ‘tax efficient form of a share buy-back programme’ – as revealed at the Company AGM this week.Donegal Investment Group, formerly known as Donegal Creameries, reported a significant improvement in performance of the seed potato business in the 8 month period to the 31st August 2016 as well as continued progress in the food-agri division. The Company’s Annual General Meeting was held yesterday at the Silver Tassie Hotel, Letterkenny, Co. Donegal.The group has operations across Ireland, the U.K., Holland, France and Brazil and conducts business in the produce, food-agri and property sectors.Geoffrey Vance, the company’s chairman, said that the Group’s overall performance was on plan for the new financial year to 31 August 2017 where the first six months has delivered adjusted earnings per share of 30.1c.Mr Vance stated that due to the seasonal nature of the Group’s seed potato business and animal feeds business the first six months trading represents a materially significant element of the Group’s full year performance. Turnover from continuing operations increased by 3.3% delivering adjusted earnings per share of 10.9c.Mr Ian Ireland, Managing Director, said he expected adjusted earnings per share of 30c to 32c per share for the full year.“The Board remains optimistic about the global potential of the Group’s Produce business, the high growth being delivered in the Group’s speciality dairy business and the ability of the rest of the Group’s businesses and assets to provide cash,” the AGM statement said.All resolutions were approved by shareholders at the AGM.Donegal Investment Group ends dividend payments to shareholders was last modified: May 25th, 2017 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Donegal INvestment Group
REVEALED Premier League Team of the Season so far, including Liverpool and Leicester stars smart causal gameday cracker targets RANKED Latest Leicester City News silverware Soyuncu, 22, was linked with a move to Arsenal earlier this summer but the Gunners were put off by the German club’s £35m valuation.However, Leicester would like to keep Maguire even if they can get both deals wrapped up.They have Wes Morgan, Yohan Benalouane and Jonny Evans, who arrived at the King Power Stadium this summer. Maguire excelled at the World Cup this summer Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? possible standings Every current Premier League club’s best kit from the past decade getty Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Harry Maguire is reportedly still hoping he can finalise his move to Manchester United before the summer transfer window deadline tomorrow.However, according to Sky sources, United’s move for Jerome Boateng is also in the pipeline as the Foxes turned down an offer of £60million for Maguire. Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade shining England’s most successful clubs of the past decade, according to trophies won How the Premier League table could change after the Boxing Day fixtures Told reports that Jerome Boateng turned down a move to Man United for football reasons are wide of the mark. Boateng wants to move to United and Jose Mourinho wants to sign him. Maguire also still hoping United will sign him. One source says £60m bid already turned down.— Kaveh Solhekol (@SkyKaveh) August 8, 2018Harry Maguire ‘would be crazy not to make Manchester United move happen’ – talkSPORT toldAnd it seems the 2015/16 Premier League champions could be preparing for life without Maguire, with reports emerging that Leicester are on the verge of signing two centre-backs.Croatia Under-21 international Filip Benkovic had a medical on Monday ahead of a £13.5m move from Dinamo Zagreb.The Foxes are also close to striking a deal worth £22.5m including add-ons for Freiburg’s Turkish defender Caglar Soyuncu. 1 Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January
2 MANCHESTER UNITEDGames – 21Goals – 3Goals per game – 0.14ARSENALGames – 122Goals – 60Goals per game – 0.49 Sanchez was a high-profile signing for United from Arsenal in January but has yet to show anywhere near his best form under Jose Mourinho at Old Trafford.He has scored just three goals in 21 Premier League games for United and has so far started only five league games this season.A source told The Sun: “He is totally fed up and at the end of his tether with Mourinho. He knows he can’t leave right now but is in talks with his agent about what they can do to try and sort the situation out.” Alexis Sanchez is said to be at his “lowest ebb” since moving to Manchester United.According to an exclusive report in The Sun, the Chilean striker has been “acting weird” while on international duty this week. Alexis Sanchez’s career at Manchester United has not gone to plan It comes after Sanchez was left out of the starting XI for United’s derby clash with Premier League leaders Manchester City on Sunday.The 29-year-old appeared off the bench for only the final 17 minutes in his side’s 3-1 defeat the Etihad.Sanchez was reportedly furious at his omission and “slammed his boots down” in the dressing room after the match.His frustrations are claimed to have been apparent this week, with Sanchez cutting “an isolated figure” in training with Chile.According to Chilean publication La Trecara, Sanchez sat on one of the training pitches on his own for more than half an hour after a session, while his team-mates were nearby playing football tennis.He was persuaded to join in with the other players, but his behaviour was described as “strange” by some of his fellow Chile stars. Alexis Sanchez’s career in England Alexis Sanchez made only a cameo appearance against Manchester City 2
Election candidate, Christy Galligan, has welcomed clarification from Health Minister James Reilly that there are no plans to close the maternity unit in Letterkenny General.Election candidate Christy GalliganGalligan claims this episode has been politically motivated by Fianna Fail – the timing of it alone would suggest as much.“Unfortunately, the speculation has been deeply upsetting and unhelpful for staff and patients in the hospital – they are the victims in all of this. “The fact remains that there is a review underway into maternity services in the West/North West Hospital Group following the death of Savita Halappanavar at University Hospital Galway. That is currently how things stand. However, the Minister has assured that no service reconfiguration options have been recommended and there are no plans for closures of any maternity services in the region.“Fianna Fail and their representatives locally should desist from scaremongering local people for their own naked political gain, and instead begin developing practical, workable solutions to ongoing issues in Donegal which would better serve the people they are purported to represent.” SCAREMONGERING ABOUT LETTERKENNY MATERNITY MUST STOP – GALLIGAN was last modified: May 16th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Christy Galliganfianna failLetterkenny General HospitalMaternity Services
At some point, the magic will run out. It always does. UCLA (6-0, 3-0 Pac-10), which moved up four spots to No. 8 in the Associated Press poll, trailed Washington by 10 points entering the fourth quarter, but won 21-17. The Bruins were 12 points behind California in the final 15 minutes, and won 47-40. “That’s the next step, playing like we do in the second half, in the first half,” tight end Marcedes Lewis said. Some credit the turnaround at Pullman to UCLA offensive coordinator Tom Cable, who verbally thrashed the defense at halftime. Cable, according to a few players, tossed in a few expletives in getting in their faces and saying they were playing, well, soft. But there were other adjustments, like having the linebackers get up the field more to force WSU tailback Jerome Harrison to run east-west rather than up the field. The Bruins also got their safeties more involved, and in the fourth quarter and overtime Harrison totaled 20 yards rushing – or 240 less than he had the first three quarters. UCLA also used more man coverage in the second half after the Cougars turned corners around regularly for big gains against a zone. “I think this week we’ll step it up,” Drew said. “In practice, we’ll probably hit a lot and get after it so we can get our minds set to come out in the first half and try hard.” But why are these adjustments being made at halftime? For instance, why not after the Cougars jumped to a 21-0 lead on the first play of the second quarter? WSU had three straight three-and-outs in the fourth quarter, and another in overtime. Its only first downs came on the last drive of regulation. “We can be a lot better,” UCLA coach Karl Dorrell said. “Defensively, we woke up at the right time, but we have to begin to fix some things, and to do some things better through the normal course of the game.” Notes: UCLA is ninth in the coaches’ poll. … The 21-point comeback matches a school record. The Bruins did it in 2000 against Arizona State, and in 1982 at Michigan. … The 17-point fourth-quarter comeback tied the school record, set in 1996 against USC. Brian Dohn, (818) 713-3607 email@example.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week And the Bruins spotted WSU a pair of 21-point leads in the first half, then trailed 38-21 in the fourth quarter before rallying to force overtime, and eventually win on tailback Maurice Drew’s 1-yard plunge. It makes for great theater, and has created a buzz around Westwood not felt since 2001, when the Bruins were ranked as high as fourth. But it doesn’t conceal the fact UCLA needed to outscore its past three opponents 50-3 in the fourth quarter, and that was to squeak past two bad teams, and what is shaping up to be an average Cal squad. During the three-game span, UCLA was outgained 1,248-819 yards in the first three quarters, but held a 418-192 advantage in the fourth. If the defense is playing that well in the fourth quarter of tight games, then something is missing in the first three quarters. The offense, meanwhile, scored seven points in the first three quarters, and 56 in the fourth quarter and overtime. The euphoria of fourth-quarter comebacks overshadowed everything else the past few weeks, but after needing a third straight last-minute score to offset a terrible start UCLA knows the situation is problematic. Even as players made the long walk from Martin Stadium to the visitor’s locker room after Saturday’s stunning 44-41 come-from-way-behind overtime victory at Washington State, several shook their heads in disgust about needing to rally from 17 points down in the fourth quarter.
They’re a friendly bunch at Irwins Expert Electrical Buncrana, and they were all smiles today as they welcomed the Donegal Daily cameras for an introduction to their store.Manager John Gill and the sales team, Peter Sweeney and Tony O’Loughlin, talked to us about what makes their store special: Irwins Expert Electrical has been at the heart of the community in Buncrana for over four decades, located on Maginn Road just a few steps from Buncrana Main Street. Over the years, the store has built up a loyal customer base and has developed into the leading supplier of electrical goods in the North West.The newly renovated electrical appliance showroom was voted No. 1 Store of The Year out of 67 Expert stores throughout Ireland in 2018 and the team take great pride in their customer service.Tony, John and Peter at Irwins Expert Electrical BuncranaIrwins Expert Electrical Buncrana services the entire Inishowen peninsula, they deliver, install, and take away old products for free recycling. Plus, with Click & Collect, you can shop online from the comfort of your home and have your items ready for collection prior to visiting the store.The shop stocks the biggest brands and won’t be beaten on price, due to their membership of the Expert Group, which are the largest electrical group in Ireland. So, if you’re looking for a new appliance, technology or simply want to have a browse, you’ll be very welcome to call into Irwins Expert Electrical Buncrana.Check out the Facebook page @irwinexpert for special offers and updates, visit www.expert.ie or telephone the store on: 074 9361161Watch: Meet the team at Irwins Expert Electrical Buncrana was last modified: September 27th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:buncranaBusinesselectricalsInishowenirwins expert electrical#retailShowroomvideo
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Charles Johnson Progressive Farmer Contributing EditorConserve soil, conserve water. Both go hand-in-hand on Steve Stevens’ farm, near Tillar, Arkansas. A third-generation farmer on land that’s 10 miles from the Mississippi River and 2 miles from the Arkansas River, Stevens has seen plenty of changes during his time here, and not all for the better. He’s determined to improve the land to make it more productive.To meet his goals, Stevens is focused on water, specifically rainfall as well as irrigation.“To be sustainable, we have to capture more rainfall so we’re not as dependent on underground water. That will also be sustainable for our aquifer,” Stevens said.Fifty years ago, groundwater was only about 20 feet from the surface. Today, it’s 55 feet. That’s a huge concern for Stevens.“When a well is 100 to 115 feet here, you’re getting close to the bottom. I asked our well driller what to do next. He said, ‘There ain’t no next.’ At that point, we can’t afford the well or the motor or the fuel,” Stevens said.A serious drought in 1980 was the turning point for water in the area. “If you had water, you made a crop, and prices were good, so you made some money, too. After that, wells went in big-time to irrigate as close to 100% of the fields as possible,” he said.FIRST STEPSIrrigating is great, he said. Not wasting a drop of that water is even better. A decade ago, he began using polypipe furrow irrigation with the PHAUCET program that advised on computerized hole sizes and scheduling. Setting it up was time-consuming. He spent many late nights at the computer working out flow rates from each well and turnrow elevation.It was time well spent. The program that first year alone saved him as much as $100,000 in pumping costs.His concerns grew with the amount of water pumped from the aquifer by area farmers, however. At the same time, he was bothered by criticism of cotton farms along the Mississippi River for adding to the dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico with nutrient runoff from fields.Stevens was determined to keep every drop of water possible in place on his farm. That way, he’d lose little soil to erosion and get the best possible use of the water, too.PROVE A POINTHe also wanted to prove his actions were making a difference. “Our water drains to Lake Village to Chicot on to the Gulf. I wanted to see, ‘What does a Delta cotton farm do to hypoxia? Can we make a difference?’” he said.He signed up for the Arkansas Discovery Farms Program, through the University of Arkansas. The program monitors water quality in runoff from 12 farms ranging from poultry production to row crops. It finds ways to reduce nutrient loss as well as soil loss and provides best-management practices for each farm.The best part for Stevens is that the program provides a measurement of what’s happening in the fields. His agronomic program was already making a difference. Planting no-till into the thick mat left by a cereal rye cover crop not only saved soil but also increased water infiltration, boosting the crop through dry spells.The Discovery Farm Program placed soil moisture probes at 6, 12, and 18 inches deep to monitor water movement. “They found that our water efficiency was 90% compared to an average of 50% in this area. Nitrogen (N) and phosphorus (P) runoff was less than 3%, even less than their model. So, we can apply N, P, K, sulfur and boron when the crop is using it, and put it in the root zone,” he said.“We can put 2 inches of water into the soil profile in an irrigation where we’d get less than half that before. How much water does it take to produce a bale of cotton? Not nearly as much as it used to on this farm.”GREAT COMBINATIONBill Robertson, Arkansas Extension cotton agronomist, said the cereal rye cover crop is key to the system.“For years, we’ve been telling farmers that they’re farming the top 6 inches of soil. Farming behind cereal rye, that became 15 inches or more, pulling water and nutrients from deep in the soil to support the crop,” Robertson said.It’s Stevens’ second effort with no-till. “We tried no-till in the 1990s. We went to a stale seedbed, and the planting window was about three days from too wet to too dry. With cereal rye, you stop the moisture drain. If you get rain, you hold it,” Stevens said.Combining the high-tech furrow irrigation with planting no-till into standing cover crops puts Stevens closer to that goal of capturing every drop of water for use by the crops. “We can manage the irrigation better and make a good crop in a dry year. We can cut back on the number of times we irrigate, which saves pumping costs.”Robertson said Stevens’ system provides yields equal to any other system but reduces cotton production costs 6 cents per pound. “It’s as good for soybeans as for cotton,” Stevens said.What he’s doing is still a neighborhood curiosity. Drivers stop alongside the road to peer at cotton and soybeans popping through a thick mat of cereal rye thinking the crop is doomed to fail.“We may go a month or longer and only see dead cereal rye out there. Then we get a rain and the cotton and soybeans take off. After a little while, only the cotton and soybeans can be seen. It’s just amazing how it does help with weed control, too,” he said.Seeing the water and soil savings turned Stevens into a bit of an evangelist for the program. He believes all farmers have to do their part to conserve water and soil.“The whole idea behind what I’m doing is to try to get information out so more growers can see this and say, ‘I could do that.’ We must conserve these resources now in my career so this farm can be passed on to my children and grandchildren,” he said.“We have to keep our minds open. I keep learning little things about it every year. We tried planting the crop into wheat at first but had problems with water standing in the field or running off. That isn’t going to work. Cereal rye roots open up the soil structure and make the whole thing work.”ROOM TO GROWIt’s good to verify that there’s little nutrient and sediment runoff, but Stevens is still working on tweaking the system to improve.“We have found that 80% of our nutrient runoff is caused by rainfall, not irrigation. We’ve also learned that most of that extra soak cycle of irrigation runs out of the field, so we don’t do that now,” he said.“We had a lot of questions and got a lot of answers, but still have questions about how to get better. These are typical fields for this area, nothing special, nothing different about them. This land we’re farming was mostly put together by my dad, then I added to it. We get great information from University of Arkansas research. By being a Discovery Farm, we can deal directly with researchers, and we’ve been part of their research projects for many years.”Curiosity is key to scientific work, and Stevens remains curious about improving his farm.“It isn’t just what makes it better, but also why. The ‘why’ is important. I’m a pilot and like to get up in my Seneca II airplane, a light twin-engine plane, and see things I can’t see from the ground. I look at my fields and other farmers’ fields, and I’m amazed what I can see from the air. This land is feeding and clothing the world, and we have to take good care of it,” he said.(ES/SK)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.