Top Fianna Fáil councillor will reject Green coalition deal Decision to enter Phase 4 of reopening Ireland deferred to August 10 Linkedin Facebook Fianna Fáil TD Niall Collins appointed as Minister of State TAGSAlan JacquesFianna Fáilhomelesshomelessnesshousing crisisJan O’SullivanLabour PartylimerickWillie O’Dea TD Twitter Advertisement Email Politicians should work together to end homeless crisis NewsLocal NewsGovernment has failed to solve Limerick homeless crisisBy Alan Jacques – August 5, 2017 1104 RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR WhatsApp Print Previous articleLimerick’s Shadowman is making a big impactNext articleSchool days… spent falling Through the Cracks Alan Jacqueshttp://www.limerickpost.ie Limerick TD says GLAS payments welcome but ‘much more action’ needed to support Agri-sector Priority is to have a decent society with decent public services FIANNA Fáil Social Protection spokesman Willie O’Dea is of the view that the Government strategy for tackling homelessness in Limerick is not working and needs a root and branch revision.The Limerick TD was commenting on the most recent homelessness report by the Department of Housing, which shows that the number of families who are accessing local authority managed emergency accommodation in Limerick and Clare has more than doubled to 53 in May 2017 compared to 19 in May 2016.“The strategy of relying on the private rental market to transition families out of homelessness in Limerick through the HAP scheme is plainly not enough,” Deputy O’Dea said.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up “Since May 2016, child and family homelessness has more than doubled and I would have concerns that families are not transitioning out of homelessness at all.“HAP, the government’s flagship scheme to house homeless families in private rental accommodation, is failing drastically to provide secure accommodation for homeless households. The HAP scheme is fundamentally flawed in its design and needs to be reformed,” he declared.He is also of the view that HAP needs to be reformed to make it more attractive for landlords and for homeless families.“Families who accept a HAP tenancy are removed from the social housing waiting list, and are instead placed on the housing transfer list. This forces them to choose between accepting an unstable rental accommodation and forgoing their place on the housing list, or remaining in emergency accommodation and retaining the prospect of a more secure social home.“In addition, most families know only too well that they will not be able to find a landlord to accept their rent under the HAP scheme.”In solving the homeless crisis, O’Dea feels the Government need less reliance on the private rental market and to put much greater emphasis on the construction of more social housing.“If nothing else, the very fact that spending by local authorities on emergency accommodation has doubled this year, yet homelessness continues to rise so drastically demonstrates that something is seriously wrong with the Government’s strategy on homelessness,” he commented.Meanwhile, the latest Census figures, which show nearly half a million adults still living with their parents, highlights the lack of affordability in the housing and rental sector.That’s according to Labour Party Housing spokesperson, Jan O’Sullivan who believes the CSO figures show how urgent it is for the Department of Housing to act as almost 270,000 men and 190,000 women aged 18 and over remain in the family home.“That so many adults are still living at home with their parents highlights the extent to which young people in particular are finding it simply unaffordable to rent, or later buy a house,” Deputy O’Sullivan said.“It is becoming more common for young couples and families to move in with their parents when they are trying to save for a deposit on a house.“While it is great that so many people have the option to remain or indeed move back home, these figures once again highlight the extent of the problem in the housing sector here.“And for those that don’t have the option to live with family, many people and families are ending up on the streets.”The Limerick TD is now calling on the Government to address the crucial supply issue and make use of the thousands of vacant properties around the country to begin addressing this crisis.by Alan [email protected]
After an upsetting loss against No.16 Michigan, No. 15 Wisconsin (16-4, 5-3 Big Ten) bounced right back to take home an exciting win Sunday afternoon at the UW Field House. The Badgers showed improvement in every area on the court and topped the match off with an incredible energy that the No. 5 Michigan State Spartans (17-3, 6-2 Big Ten) could not compete with.Determination is what freshmen setter Lauren Carlini said brought home this big win against such a talented team.“We knew we had to prove ourselves after our loss the other night and we were hungry for it today. The game definitely becomes a lot easier when you have energy on the court, so it was really a lot more fun today.”Wisconsin’s serving was critical in helping them take home the win. Despite getting aced a season-high six times, the Badgers aced the Spartans four times and forced them out of their offense multiple times with tough serves. Along with the aces, service errors brought down the Spartans as they recorded 13 errors, compared to nine for the Badgers.“In this conference you have a lot of opportunities to get knocked around and you have a lot of opportunities to do the knocking around as well,” head coach Kelly Sheffield said.We can win with really good serving and really good ball control, knowing our assignments and being very tough and hard-nosed defensively. I thought we were great in all those areas and that’s why we were able to come out with a win.”Junior Courtney Thomas knew serving played a big role in the win as well. “We were serving and serving and taking their hitters out. We knew who they were going to set to because of who was passing.”The Badgers are also taking on a whole new identity this year, bringing out strengths no one knew they had.“We’re trying to establish some type of identity with this team,” Sheffield said. “Every team, every year is establishing some type of identity and we think we are probably a blue collar, grind it out team. I mean, who are we kidding? That’s this school, this state. You think of the great teams and the great sports over the past and that’s kind of been their personality, and we’re trying to take that personality on ourselves.”The Badgers strong service and amped-up energy also helped keep the Spartans at a .000 hitting percentage in game three.“Just balling out,” Senior Annemarie Hickey said is what kept the Badgers on their A-game.“Going for every ball, giving an effort for everything and just knowing Lauren is going to be there to set the ball. [Michigan State] is a great hitting team, we just wanted to go in there with a defensive mentality. Saying they are going to get their kills but we don’t want to get frustrated. We are going to keep setting out, keep getting those digs for our hitters to hit.”The strong service got the momentum rolling in Wisconsin’s favor and brought intense rallies that ended in their favor. Carlini knew that this momentum would work to their advantage.“We know that as those plays are going on, the momentum is switching. Whoever wins the point at the end of that is going to get that swing of momentum,” Carlini said. “For the most part we were on the winning side of those, that really helped going on to the next few points.”With their aggression coming through to the other side, the Badgers took home an exciting win, upsetting the Michigan State Spartans.“We served aggressively but we also executed and that’s one of the things we talked about,” Sheffield said. “There is carelessness behind the serving line … and then there’s executing tough serves and tonight we did both of those.”
As we did when we successfully hosted the 2010 Fifa World Cup, the people of South Africa must work together, saving electricity and planning for load shedding, to help us through the current power crisis, writes Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne Brown. Over the past 20 years, electricity has been provided to more than 5.8-million South African households, reducing the percentage of households without electricity from about 50% in 1994 to the current 14%. (Image: Media Club South Africa) Minister of Public Enterprises Lynne BrownWhen South Africans stand together, we are able overcome the odds. It is a characteristic that has long defined us as a nation. We demonstrated this tenacity when we successfully hosted the 2010 Fifa World Cup.That success demonstrated our capabilities to the world and earned us the reputation of a country that can deliver.Our national power supply remains under pressure as Eskom is at times unable to produce the full electricity required due to maintenance and unexpected breakdowns at power stations.In this instance it becomes necessary to interrupt supply to certain areas through load shedding.Our demand for electricity has reached the point where at least level one load shedding, a point which requires that 1 000 MW be removed from the grid, and sometimes level two, which requires the removal of2 000 MW.The government apologises for the inconvenience caused as a result of the unplanned electricity disruptions and remain deeply concerned over the effect it has had on the lives of South Africans. Its impact on business is equally troubling as our economy is dependent on electricity for economic growth.Click image for a larger view:The government is working to secure South Africa’s future energy supply through an energy mix made up of coal, solar, wind, hydro, gas and nuclear energy.In the meantime, let us help the country by trying to work around load shedding. We should take time to familiarise ourselves with the schedule in our areas.This way we will be able to plan ahead so that the power disruptions have less of an impact on our family life and businesses. Households and businesses are encouraged to prepare for at least two-hour power outages between 7am and 10pm daily.Be aware of the national energy alerts on radio and television, and immediately respond to them by switching off high-energy appliances such as geysers, pool pumps, ovens and air conditioners so that we pass the critical period with limited disruptions.The energy situation going forward remains extremely tight. But let’s bear in mind that we are all in this situation together and need to do everything possible to get through this short-term strain.The government is confident that its analysis of the situation and the measures it is introducing will bring relief in the foreseeable future.We are supporting the national grid through the more frequent use of diesel powered open-cycle gas turbines to help bridge the immediate gap between supply and demand.Work is under way to reduce maintenance backlogs and improve the performance of power plants to reduce unplanned outages. These are a major concern.There are also plans in place to restore 960 MW of generation capacity at Majuba Power Station by the end of the year, after one of its storage silos collapsed last year.These immediate interventions are receiving our highest priority through the Interministerial War Room established by Cabinet to fast-track the implementation of a five-point plan to turn the current situation around.The War Room is led by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, supported by relevant ministers and a Technical War Room of directors-general.Our energy crunch is a result of a number of complex factors. It includes the legacy of apartheid, where millions of marginalised black South Africans were deliberately excluded from the national grid.Over the past 20 years, electricity has been provided to more than 5.8-million households, reducing the percentage of households without electricity from about 50% in 1994 to the current 14%.Over the medium term, the government is working to secure the national grid by buying an additional 1000 MW from private power producers, which will come on stream within 18 months.The launch of an independent power producer programme that harnesses waste energy from the sugar, paper, and pulp industries to produce about 800 MW is part of the department’s plans.A number of potential gas-to-power projects have also been identified. These include both new gas-fired power stations and conversion of diesel-fired power stations to gas.Our energy situation affects all of us. In the interest of the nation, we need to work together to solve our collective problem in the spirit and manner in which we rose to the challenge of 2010.Like in our preparation for the 2010 Fifa World Cup, failure is simply not an option. We can and will overcome this tight energy situation when we stand together.
15 April 2015South Africa’s newest university – the Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University – demonstrated the government’s commitment to education and skills development, President Jacob Zuma said at the official opening on Tuesday.SMU, which has been built on the premises of the old Medical University of Southern Africa (Medunsa in Ga-Rankuwa, north of Pretoria, is South Africa’s first “standalone health sciences university”, Zuma said. It offers certificates, diplomas, degrees and post-graduate programmes.Zuma said the government will continue to invest in education and skills as the key to economic growth and development. Two new universities were opened in 2014: the Sol Plaatje University in the Northern Cape and the University of Mpumalanga. Both provinces did not previously have a university.“South Africa today is faced with an extensive shortage and an inadequate distribution of health professionals. We have an undersupply of new and appropriately trained health science graduates, which is why we need to focus intensively on producing this important health professional core,” he said.New generationThe university is named after former ANC president Sefako Makgatho, who, Zuma said, “dedicated his entire life to improving the human condition of the African masses in our country, in a noble, altruistic and gallant manner.“The university is named after a gallant son of the South African soil. It must promote the legacy of Sefako Makgatho by producing appropriately qualified, highly skilled and patriotic human resources for health.”Zuma said SMU provided an excellent opportunity for the development and training of a new generation of health professionals, who would make a positive difference in the lives of the many South Africans still marginalised by poverty and lack of access to health services.He said the new university would go beyond only training medical doctors and would produce other health professionals such as dentists, nurses, physiotherapists, medical technologists and radiographers.The new university also improves access to higher learning. Around 25% of South Africans are expected to be engaged with further study by 2030. The university has 5 034 students enrolled. Its projected growth is to have 7 000 students by 2019, and 10 000 students by 2024.“We are really forging ahead in providing more opportunities and a better future for our youth and our people in general,” Zuma said.The university would recruit students from communities with the greatest health-care needs, and provide innovative training programmes, including distance programmes, he said.FundingA university subsidy of more than R298-million had been allocated to support the university operations for the 2015/16 financial year. An additional amount of R210- million has been made available to support the establishment of the new university.Zuma said universities should ensure that they offered a range of courses and programmes that would meet the needs of the economy. “We also encourage our learners to take up mathematics and science as more opportunities are now available for further study for them in this field. We are also investing in teacher training so that we can produce students for Sefako Makgatho from our high schools,” he said.Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande said the university must aim to be judged against the best in the world.He said the department had started making funding available for Masters and PhD students, but had not receive anticipated number of applications. The department has set aside about R145-million for academics.Nzimande said his department would also make funding available for entry-level posts at universities. Students “are going to sign an agreement that says, if we have supported you as government for three years, you are going to come back and teach at a university for three years, we will create a post for you”.Introduction of new programmesProfessor Olive Shisana, chair of the SMU Interim Council, said about 15 new programmes would offered by the university in the future to address the gaps identified in the South African health sector.Although the university would lead with health science programmes, it would not kill what other universities were currently offering, she said.Shisana said the university was developing relationships with international institutions: “We brought in an international advisory committee that includes people from universities in Brazil, Washington, Uganda and the president of the Medical Council in South Africa, among others. We did this because this university is expected to provide trainees who are going to support the health system that is coming up.”Shisana said the university would also offer short courses for health-care professionals who wanted to expand their skills and knowledge.Source: SAnews.gov.za
The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology The app just launched in the App Store yesterday and makes it simple to create quick polls of your friends. Pick friends from your contacts – even if they don’t have an iPhone – and Cloudy will text them your question. Cloudy then displays the responses to your yes/no and multiple-choice questions, and allows you to easily send your decision back to your friends. You can also answer questions from your friends right in the app.Cloudy lets you create friend groups for quickly asking the same people about something over and over again. Unlike group chatting apps, Cloudy is more of a polling tool than a communication tool. That is, you create either a yes/no question or a multiple choice poll and send it to your friends. As they vote, you can see their responses on the app. Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Tags:#crowdsourcing#mobile#web mike melanson Related Posts What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Have you ever tried asking a question on Facebook and wondered if anyone ever saw it? The problem with asking all of your friends on Facebook a question through a status update is that you never know who is going to see it. Between Facebook’s algorithms, the mass of updates and the simple fact that not everyone lurks on Facebook 24 hours a day, you never know who your question will reach.Enter Cloudy, an iPhone app that “lets you quickly and easily ask groups of friends for their opinions.” Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces On the vote-creating end of things, everything was smooth as butter. On the response end of things, however, not all were satisfied (as you can see in the screenshot of the poll responses). We imagine it’s an entirely different experience when all parties have the app, but when you’re on the SMS end of things, you get one message after another and need to reply with specific words to respond – it’s almost like suddenly being thrust into dealing with the DMV’s automated phone system when you were just going about your day. There are lots of apps these days that are making sure to be inclusionary, but we’re wondering if this one might have left the SMS out of it. At what point do we leave the idea of feature phones behind, then again? That might be a question for another day, but it feels pertinent here. The in-app experience is great, whereas the SMS experience just got complaints. Nonetheless, creating polls, getting statistics and being able to ask your friends for very specific responses, rather than simply asking open-ended questions, feels like something that could be rather addictive to the right crowds. “Which pizza place is better, Pepe’s or Sally’s?” you might ask. What do you think – is a poll something you want to subject your friends to? Or do group messaging apps like Beluga or GroupMe satisfy all your needs in this realm?
Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting ‘Rebel attack’ no cause for concern-PNP, AFP LATEST STORIES Klay Thompson on Warriors’ Game 1 loss: ‘We’ll respond like the champions we are’ Jaren Dillinger joins Meralco. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—Jared Dillinger is now with Barangay Ginebra after the Gin Kings scooped him up from Meralco’s free agent list.Dillinger ended his six-year stint with the Bolts where he was known as a do-it-all wingman that could play in both the frontcourt and backcourt.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:21‘Bato’ says Robredo has to toughen up: ‘This is war…hindi ka pwedeng pa-cute cute dito’01:29Attacks vs UP Visayas students a ‘natural reaction’ from Duterte supporters – Palace02:42PH 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 Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss MOST READ Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Catholic schools seek legislated pay hike, too PDEA chief backs Robredo in revealing ‘discoveries’ on drug war DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue Dillinger failed to replicate that success with the Bolts but helped the team reach two straight Governors’ Cup finals in 2016 and 2017.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View comments Two-day strike in Bicol fails to cripple transport Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. In an article on Spin.ph, Dillinger reportedly didn’t tell Meralco’s management that he will be signing with the Gin Kings after he became an unrestricted free agent.Meralco team manager Paolo Trillo said the Bolts and Dillinger had a “gentleman’s agreement” that the forward won’t be signing with any other team while he’s in the free agent list to accommodate Meralco’s big signing center Raymond Almazan.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsDillinger, however, won’t be suiting up immediately for the Gin Kings since he’s still nursing a recurring quad injury that’s left him off the floor for two months.The 6-foot-4 wingman spent his first five years with TNT winning five titles with the franchise.
Man Utd boss Solskjaer fears Liverpool could be last gameby Paul Vegas17 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveManchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer fears a heavy defeat in their next game at home to Liverpool could see him lose his job.Solskjaer has described it as the “perfect game” for United after the international break following the club’s worst start to a season in 30 years.However, it is understood the 46-year-old is concerned that executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward will come under huge pressure to sack him if United lose heavily to table-topping Liverpool at Old Trafford a week on Sunday, says the Daily Mail.Liverpool are on a run of 17 league wins in a row.United’s 3-1 defeat at Anfield last December sealed Jose Mourinho’s fate, and an embarrassing repeat could put Solskjaer’s future in doubt. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
APTN National NewsThe man accused of pulling a rifle on the RCMP in the Nunavut community of Igloolik made a very brief court appearance Wednesday in Iqaluit.Shawn Kappianaq, 20, faces 12 charges following an armed standoff in Igloolik where police say he threatened them with a rifle.Kappianaq is scheduled to appear in court again Thursday.
BAGHDAD – Iraq says it will start receiving bids next June for projects to develop nine oil and gas fields in an attempt by the war-ravaged nation to boost energy revenues.Abdul-Mahdi al-Ameedi, who heads the Oil Ministry’s Licensing and Petroleum Contracts Department, said on Monday that detailed energy information on the nine areas in question will be disclosed at the end of this month.Al-Ameedi says companies that bid on the projects will for the first time be able to take part in the drawing up of the contract, as an incentive for the bidders.He says five of the nine fields or blocs as they are called are shared with Iran, three with Kuwait and one is located in the Persian Gulf.Iraq has the world’s fourth largest oil reserves.
MONTREAL – Transat A.T. plans to spend $750 million over the coming years to develop a hotel chain in Mexico and the Caribbean that it hopes will help to put it in a better position to face heightened competition from Canadian rivals.Co-founder and CEO Jean-Marc Eustache plans to devote the next 18 to 24 months until he retires to begin developing the chain of hotels while his heir, Annick Guerard, runs the company as chief operating officer.“It’s our main goal for the development of Transat,” he said Thursday during a conference call about its 2017 results.Eustache said a president for the hotel division will be hired within weeks to put the plan in action before he “disappears” after retiring and leaving his position as chairman.Transat (TSX:TRZ) plans to purchase and refurbish one hotel and a piece of land this year as it looks to build a network of 5,000 rooms, 60 per cent of which it will own and manage, over the next five to seven years.In October, Transat sold its 35 per cent stake in its Ocean Hotels joint venture for $186 million. The company also signed a deal last month to sell its Jonview Canada subsidiary to a Japanese company for $44 million.Transat said the hotel development and steps it has taken over the last three years to stem losses will enhance its ability to defend its turf against Air Canada Rouge, WestJet Vacations and Sunwing.The Montreal-based company has simplified its fleet to give it more flexibility, improved its digital footprint, augmented the amount of trips it sells directly and improved revenue management.“I think we are better armed to face any of those actions coming from our competitors in the future,” chief financial officer Denis Petrin added.Transat beat expectations as the travel company’s fourth-quarter net income surged due to a strong transatlantic summer season and the sale of its stake in Oceans Hotels.The company earned $148.1 million or $4 per share, up from $34.9 million or 95 cents per share a year ago.Revenues for the three months ended Oct. 31 grew 14.1 per cent to $698.6 million, helped by an 8.7 per cent increase in the number of transatlantic customers.Excluding one-time items, Transat says its adjusted profits doubled to $46.4 million or $1.24 per share.Transat was expected to earn $1.11 in adjusted profits on $662.6 million in revenues, according to analysts polled by Thomson Reuters.Analyst Cameron Doerksen of National Bank Financial said the results were strong, but he anticipates the company will face competitive pressure over the long term, noting that the hotel development will take several years to roll out.The results included a $2 million to $3 million hit in the quarter from hurricanes that disrupted travel to several Caribbean islands.Petrin said Transat doesn’t expect the storms, which hit 40 per cent of Cuba as well as other islands, will have a significant impact on the winter travel season.For the full year, Transat’s net earnings attributable to shareholders was $134.3 million on $3 billion of revenues, which compared with a $41.7 million loss on $3.89 billion of revenue last year.