New Bright Ideas recognizes innovative government programs

first_imgToday the Ash Center for Democratic Governance and Innovation at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, announced 173 government programs selected for its newly created Bright Ideas program. In its inaugural year, Bright Ideas is designed to recognize and share creative government initiatives around the country with interested public sector, nonprofit, and academic communities.Bright Ideas seeks to complement the long-standing Innovations in American Government Awards Program by providing government agencies with a collection of new solutions that can be considered and adopted today. This new program serves to recognize promising government programs and partnerships that government officials, public servants, and others might find useful when faced with their own challenges.This year’s cohort of Bright Ideas was chosen by a team of expert evaluators made up of academics, practitioners, and former public servants. Selected from a pool of nearly 600 applicants including smaller-scale pilots, 2010 Bright Ideas address a range of pressing issues including poverty reduction, environmental conservation, and emergency management.“For over 20 years we have been honoring the country’s most creative public sector initiatives through our Innovations in American Government Awards Program,” said Anthony Saich, director of the Ash Center. “The creation of Bright Ideas was a natural next step to shed light on an even greater number of noteworthy programs and practices across our nation and to encourage practitioners to make these ideas work in their own backyards.”The 2010 Bright Ideas will be showcased on the Center’s Government Innovators Network, an online marketplace of ideas and examples of government innovation for policymakers and practitioners. The inaugural group of Bright Ideas will serve as a cornerstone of a new online community where innovative ideas are proposed, shared, and disseminated. The Ash Center also envisions that these Bright Ideas have the potential to become future Innovations in American Government winners.Bright Ideas is an initiative of the Ash Center’s Innovations in Government Program, which spotlights exemplary models of government innovation and advances efforts to address the nation’s most pressing public concerns. Throughout its history, the program has generated a wealth of research based on award-winning government innovations and the study of how innovation occurs.The Ash Center will be accepting applications and recognizing more Bright Ideas on a rolling basis throughout the year. Read Full Storylast_img read more

Drum majors lead marching band to excellence

first_imgAfter three short blasts to a whistle, six white-gloved hands flash through the air, transforming the organized chaos of a 380-member band practice into a harmonious swell of chromatic scales. These are the same white gloves that twirl thick, elongated batons called maces and conduct the nation’s oldest university marching band through daily practice, weekly marches and game-day performances. They belong to the drum majors, three seasoned band veterans who bridge the gap between directors and members. Senior Leo Mironovich, head drum major of the Band of the Fighting Irish, and senior assistant drum majors Betsy FitzGerald and Nicole McMillan spoke to The Observer about their journeys through high school and college band and the responsibilities and challenges of serving a group under so much public scrutiny, especially at the National Championship Game in January. “The National Championship experience was surreal,” Mironovich said. “We were absolutely ready for it; we had some of the best rehearsals of the year. We had the best morning of rehearsal pretty much in [director Dr. Kenneth] Dye’s history at Notre Dame. And we put on a fantastic halftime show. “In terms of the professional product that we put out on the field, on this big stage, we nailed it. We did really, really well.” Talking about performing to 80,000 fans in Notre Dame Stadium left the band leaders at a loss for words.  “I can’t,” FitzGerald said. “You just can’t. It’s just total sensory overload.” “It is really indescribable,” McMillan said. “It’s exhilarating; it’s a rush. … I feel very lucky to get to experience that.” The drum majors said their responsibilities demand much more than performing in the traditional spectacle of football games. “A lot of times people only see the glamorous aspects of drum majors, especially on game day,” Mironovich said. “It’s such a humbling position and such a powerless position. You’re completely reliant on the respect of the band members. “If they don’t view you as their leader, if they don’t want to work for you, the band is going to crash and burn.” The drum majors said their main role is to facilitate dialogue.  “We kind of serve as communicators between directors and the rest of the students,” FitzGerald said. “We facilitate rehearsal. We don’t run the rehearsal, we just kind of pull it all together.” Mironovich served as an assistant drum major in 2012-2013 but assumed the lead role this year. FitzGerald and McMillan joined him for the first time this season. All three endured a four-month audition process in 2012 that tested their marching, twirling and conducting skills. “It’s like waiting for your college acceptance letters,” McMillan said. Mironovich said auditioning for a second time and for the lead role was a personal journey.  “The second time around, it was extra nerve wracking because I felt a great deal more pressure,” Mironovich said. “I felt I had to show how much I had grown. … I had to prove I could take it to the next level, go to the next step to be the head drum major.” FitzGerald and McMillan said their motivation for auditioning sprung from a deep love for and commitment to the Band of the Fighting Irish. “Being able to serve our 380 best friends is such a privilege,” FitzGerald said. “Deciding to make that journey, deciding to say, ‘Yes, I want to hold myself up to a higher standard because I love band, because I love all the people I get to meet. … I want to be the one to put in all that extra time and show how much I really deeply care about these people.’” All three drum majors kicked off their marching careers in high school after learning their instruments in middle school. Mironovich, originally a trumpet player, said he switched to French horn and the mellophone, its mobile equivalent, when he joined the marching band as a sophomore. “When I was deciding colleges, I just knew music had to be a part of it,” Mironovich said. “There was just no other option. I knew for a fact that I had to do marching band. Notre Dame had such a prestigious marching band – very, very traditional. I loved it since Day One.” McMillan said her father is a musician who pushed his daughters to hone their own musical talents. “He just told each girl in our family that we had to pick a different instrument so we could form a family band,” she said. “So I picked flute because it could fit in my backpack and I thought it sounded pretty.” The three seniors said they missed playing their instruments with the band, but Mironovich said he had found his niche with the drum majors. “I found the right spot for me within the band,” he said. “I’m just so blessed to be doing what I’m doing.” Contact Lesley Stevenson at [email protected]last_img read more

Beach Reading: Carol Ruckdeschel’s New Book Is the Defining Natural History of Cumberland Island

first_imgIf you read only one book about Cumberland Island, this is it: Carol Ruckdeschel’s A Natural History of Cumberland Island is the authoritative guidebook and encyclopedia for Georgia’s largest and southernmost barrier island. This book tells the story of everything that lives on Cumberland Island, from coyotes and bobcats to the ticks that feed on them.Cumberland Island is a national seashore, wilderness, and global biosphere reserve—recognized internationally because it shelters so many rare and endangered species. Ruckdeschel has observed and studied every one of them, and her detailed accounts in this book contain breathtaking first-hand encounters and notes from the field.It’s filled with insightful details into island life, including the diets of the first aboriginal people to live on Cumberland (mussels, clams, mullet, shrimp, deer, and the occasional alligator, sea turtle, and manatee, along with abundant berries, nuts, and leaves). It’s filled with other fascinating facts: Cumberland Island’s shoreline was once 78 miles east of its present location and Whitney Lake is the largest natural body of freshwater on the Georgia barrier islands (and it almost completely dried up during a 1981 drought).No one knows more about Cumberland Island than Carol Ruckdeschel. She has lived on the island for the past 45 years, and she has devoted much of her life to researching and writing this book. For over four decades, Ruckdeschel has been studying the wildlife of Cumberland Island—wading into alligator dens, climbing trees to survey bald eagle nests, and autopsying endangered sea turtles that wash ashore.Ruckdeschel also powerfully and definitively describes the geology and ecology of Cumberland with lucid, lively, and engaging prose. She also tells the island’s human story, from the earliest indigenous inhabitants to the Carnegie and Rockefeller families today. The influence of their agriculture, timber harvesting, and expanding development on natural communities has been profound. The introduction of feral animals and the suppression of fire has also significantly altered the diversity and health of island ecology.The opening chapters provide sweeping summaries of the island—from a spit of sand 40,000 years ago to the 18-mile barrier island today. Most of the book is dedicated to species accounts, which provide incredibly detailed, first-hand, extraordinary insights into every fish, amphibian, reptile, bird, mammal, and parasite that inhabit the island. Her accounts are supported with authoritative research from leading scientists in every field.This is not necessarily a light read for summer vacation, but it is an essential companion for anyone visiting the island or seeking to understand its living community. A Natural History of Cumberland Island is a groundbreaking, landmark publication for Southern ecology, and it provides powerful new insights into the natural and human history of the South’s wildest island. last_img read more

Cuomo Announces Proposal For LIPA’s Future

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The Long Island Power Authority could be hit with a severe power downgrade if New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo gets his way.The governor laid out a proposal Monday that would shift the embattled utility company’s day-to-day operation to PSEG, the New Jersey-based company slated to replace National Grid next year, and would freeze rates for three years, slash LIPA’s staff considerably and reduce LIPA’s debt load.Essentially, LIPA would become a holding company, but would remain under government ownership for tax purposes and to ensure reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the governor said.“Simply put, LIPA is broken,” Cuomo said at the afternoon briefing.The governor’s long-awaited announcement regarding the utility’s future comes more than six months after Superstorm Sandy pummeled LI, knocking out power to more than 90 percent of the 1.1 million homes and business that LIPA serves. LIPA came under intense pressure amid the storm’s aftermath from local and state officials, including Cuomo, who at his state-of-the-state address in January said “the time has come to abolish LIPA. Period.”The governor didn’t go that far Monday, nor did he call for LIPA to be privatized, which he suggested early on after the Oct. 29 storm. But he made clear that the utility’s power would be diminished considerably.“I think the storm was the straw that broke the camel’s back,” Cuomo said, joined in Albany with Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano and Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone. “It is the status quo and it has failed.”Cuomo is seeking to privatize much of the utility’s operation by transferring duties to PSEG come January, improve customer service during storm response and stabilize rates—partly by instituting a rate freeze through 2015. He’s also calling for more government oversight of the utility.“Getting rates down is essential,” Cuomo said, “getting the cost of power down is essential.”He decided against privatizing the LIPA altogether, noting that doing so could endanger future reimbursement from FEMA. Sandy aid has already been allocated to cover the cost of raising or relocating LIPA’s power lines so property owners don’t have to foot the bill as they continue construction of their storm-ravaged homes.The proposal would also impact LIPA’s staff, cutting it from 90 to 20, the governor said, and would slash the number of board members from 15 to five.Cuomo is looking to push the proposal through this legislative session, which ends at the end of June. The top leaders in the state Senate and Assembly gave no indication that they would pass the bill through their respective chambers.Dean Skelos (R-Rockville Centre), co-leader of the state Senate, said he “will closely review this plan,” and added that officials are moving the in “right direction.”“I think this is a thoughtful plan that has many great ideas,” said Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver (D-Manhattan). “It’s an important step in the right direction.”Both Mangano and Bellone accepted the governor’s recommendations.“I think we have a critical moment to be responsive to this issue,” Cuomo said.“There is no alternative because the status quo is dangerous for Long Island.”last_img read more

Broome County hospitality industry braces for ‘new normal’

first_imgWik-Grimm says when she and her husband decided to open a Bed and Breakfast, they knew Binghamton was the place to do it. But, as discussions about reopening the economy ramp up that could soon change. “We need to eliminate some of the gathering spaces within the building so we don’t have groups of guests gathering together which has always been a big part of the B&B experience,” she says. (WBNG) — As of May 4, Broome County regulations don’t allow hotels and Bed and Breakfasts to book guests from outside the county. “We may end up providing that breakfast buffet but not allowing guests into the dining area so it’ll be more of a take it to go and eat in your room kind of thing,” he says. On the other hand, Wik-Grimm stresses that if guest houses like hers are going to survive in a post COVID world, they are going to need to work with event planners to make sure tourists feel comfortable coming to stay in the area. Now she says as the Bed and Breakfast is eyeing a June 1 reopening, the COVID-19 crisis has forced them to turn the classic business model for a bed and breakfast upside down. “It really comes down to lowering occupancy instead of ever allowing full occupancy at most we’re going to be doing a few rooms at a time that allows space between guests,” says Pamela Wik-Grimm, owner of The Park House Bed & Breakfast on Park Ave in Binghamton. center_img Marcus Peeples, manager of the Farfield Inn by Marriott Binghamton says the need to eliminate socialization is not unique to the Bed and Breakfast experience. Not only that, but with many big-draw summer events cancelled, Peeples says local hotels need to shift their marketing focus. “As an industry we need to communicate with event partners that we’re here to make their guests feel comfortable,” she says. “We’re not going to give up on that now and we’re not going to walk away from that now.” Experts in the local hospitality industry say for that to happen, operators need to understand that there is no going back to the way things were before. “We did a lot of market research and really thought about where we wanted to be,” she told 12 News. “I think there will be a greater need for health care travelers or even those who are in the construction industries,” he suggests. last_img read more

Arena Hospitality Group helps Pula General Hospital

first_imgAHG donated 35 LCD TVs to the hospital to make it easier for patients to stay, donated about 100 “lunch packages” a day for the hospital’s medical staff, and made their employees available to help prepare for moving into the new hospital premises and cleaning. recent immigration to hospital wards. Due to the crisis situation caused by the COVID-19 coronavirus epidemic, Arena Hospitality Group dd is making its opportunities available to help the local community and the population to overcome the difficult situation in which we all find ourselves. “Arena Hospitality Group wants to make its contribution with the desire that the extraordinary situation in which we live ends as soon as possible with the easiest possible consequences, but will also continue to monitor the situation and continue to help the community and citizens of Pula, Istria and Croatia”Point out the Management Board of Arena Hospitality Group.center_img Due to the long-standing good cooperation with the General Hospital Pula, they decided to help financially, but also by making their employees available according to their abilities.last_img read more

Governor Wolf Vows to Protect PA Medical Marijuana Patients from Federal Government

first_img Medical Marijuana,  National Issues,  Press Release Harrisburg, PA – In a letter to U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions, Governor Tom Wolf today said the federal government should not get in the way of Pennsylvania delivering relief via medical marijuana to suffering children, families and veterans. The letter comes after reports that Attorney General Sessions had personally asked Congress to repeal an amendment that protected state-approved medical marijuana programs from disruption by the federal government.“Last year, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed bipartisan legislation to legalize medical marijuana that I was proud to sign into law,” Governor Wolf wrote. “The legislation was the result of conversations with Republicans and Democrats and fierce advocacy from families of children who were stricken with terrible illnesses that could be helped by medical marijuana.“Given the bipartisan and medical consensus for medical marijuana in Pennsylvania and many other states, I am disturbed to know that you are actively pursuing a change in federal law to go after medical marijuana suppliers. We do not need the federal government getting in the way of Pennsylvania’s right to deliver them relief through our new medical marijuana program. “In the letter, Governor Wolf told the U.S. Attorney General that should he continue to pursue this federal shift and Congress were to agree, he would seek legal action to protect patients and legal producers.More information on Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Program can be found here.To view the letter in its entirety, click here (Scribd). View a PDF version here.The full text of Governor Wolf’s letter:Dear Attorney General Sessions:Last year, the Pennsylvania General Assembly passed bipartisan legislation to legalize medical marijuana that I was proud to sign into law. The legislation was the result of conversations with Republicans and Democrats and fierce advocacy from families of children who were stricken with terrible illnesses that could be helped by medical marijuana.We talked to kids who suffer dozens of seizures each day. We met veterans who have seen absolute terror and seek relief from the effects of their post-traumatic stress. We approached the responsibility of providing relief to the people of Pennsylvania very thoughtfully.Since I signed the legislation, we have taken very careful and deliberate steps to implement the law so that those who are suffering can get relief while ensuring that the state is a responsible steward of the program.Given the bipartisan and medical consensus for medical marijuana in Pennsylvania and many other states, I am disturbed to know that you are actively pursuing a change in federal law to go after medical marijuana suppliers.We do not need the federal government getting in the way of Pennsylvania’s right to deliver them relief through our new medical marijuana program.Your action to undo the protections of the Rohrabacher-Farr amendment, which prevents the use of federal funds to disrupt states’ efforts to implement “their own State laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession or cultivation of medical marijuana” is misguided.If you seek to further disrupt our ability to establish a legal way to deliver relief of medical marijuana to our citizens, I will ask the Attorney General of Pennsylvania to take legal action to protect our residents and state sovereignty.Sincerely,TOM WOLFGovernorGovernor Wolf Letter to Attorney General Sessions Regarding Medical Marijuana by Governor Tom Wolf on Scribd SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Governor Wolf Vows to Protect PA Medical Marijuana Patients from Federal Governmentcenter_img June 15, 2017last_img read more

Would you pay $2m for this – in rent, for a single summer?

first_img Could this be our quirkiest house? The home is newly built and soon to be finished. Source: Realtor.com The former owner attempted to rent it out at $12,800 a week when she was struggling to land a sale – though she eventually let it go at a major discount for $10.138m. The front yard, with tennis court, long driveway and richlist neighbours. Source: Realtor.com 11/10 for this wine bar idea. Source: Realtor.com“Southampton Oceanfront Home Goes For $1.5M As A Summer Rental!” she tweeted.She told The New York Post that “in past years, we’ve hit the $1 million-plus rental mark, but this far surpasses it”.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus13 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market13 hours ago“People don’t go to the Hamptons to get away from New York. They go to see the same people they do business with in the city, but in a more casual setting.”If it is indeed just for the 12-week US summer season, that would amount to a crazy $US125,000 a week. Compare that to one of the most expensive rental prices asked in Queensland in recent times – $12,800 for Christopher Skase’s old house Bromley in Hamilton. Out with the old, in with the new The Skase home was laid out across nine blocks of land in bluechip Hamilton.The former owner had listed it at that price after it failed to land a sale. It’s not been revealed if anyone ever took up the rental offer either, but the home eventually sold for $10.138m – a major discount considering over $30m had been spent on the property over the years.The Hamptons home, listed on Realtor.com by Vincent Horcasitas of Saunders & Associates, has a significantly bigger pricetag at $76.335m of our dollars or around $US53.9m.Mr Horcasitas described it as a “prime oceanfront Meadow Lane address on Southampton’s highly prized Billionaire’s Row”. The estate was “ultramodern” on 2.96 acres and will have been newly completed by the time the tenants move in for the summer party season.It has over 11,000sq feet of living space with two master suites, a study, a VIP suite and six other bedroom suites on the first floor. Add to that an infinity edge pool and spa, a panorama of the ocean and sky, state of the art full kitchen with its own prep kitchen, oversized wine display, wet bar, home theatre, hard surface tennis court, 6.5 car garage under the house, extra parking for 10 vehicles, and a long walkway to the beach. The key to surviving your kids FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOK The Hamilton home built by Christopher Skase was on the rental market for $12,800 – making it the highest residential rental ever asked in the area.A staggering $12,800 a week may be the most expensive rent asked here — for Christopher Skase’s old house — but an ultramodern Hamptons’ home has blown everyone out of the water.The Southampton oceanfront home – in the mighty playground of the rich and famous of New York, the Hamptons – has just been rented out for the upcoming American summer at a whopping $US1.5m. In Australian dollars that’s $2.124m for a season.Even veteran New York real estate agent Dolly Lenz was impressed, calling it a “real estate record”. MORE REAL ESTATE NEWS Australia’s cheapest suburb is by the beach Seymour family buys $7.75m riverfront house The backyard with pool, deck and a long walkway to the beach. Source: Realtor.com Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:58Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:58 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD432p432p216p216p180p180pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenHow much do I need to retire?00:58 The property at 1400 Meadow Ln, Southampton, NY, has been rented out for the summer for $1.5m. Source: Realtor.com Christopher Skase had this home in Hamilton built, reportedly for about $35m.last_img read more

Conf Cup: Horoya’s Bolaji Sarkin eager to face Enyimba

first_img Promoted Content5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme ParksBirds Enjoy Living In A Gallery Space Created For Them7 Universities In The World Where Education Costs Too Much9 Facts You Should Know Before Getting A TattooTop 10 Tiniest Phones Ever Made6 Interesting Ways To Make Money With A DroneMind-Bending Technology That Was Predicted Before It AppearedBest Car Manufacturers In The World7 Thailand’s Most Exquisite Architectural Wonders8 Things To Expect If An Asteroid Hits Our Planet7 Action Movies That’ll Give You An Adrenaline RushWhy Go Veg? 7 Reasons To Do This The pacy striker only recently revealed his readiness to face Enyimba noting that it will offer him an opportunity to reconnect with Nigerian football on one hand and also prove that he is still in top shape and ready to deliver for his Guinean side. ““I will be very happy to meet Enyimba because I even want to come home so that I will meet some of my fans and my friends. So it will be a very good game, “he enthused in a recent chat with Brilla fm. The former Abia Warriors ace will no doubt be seeking for opportunity to shine at the expense of the homers. The current shape of both teams however is an indication that fans are in for celebration of fireworks. Read Also CAF CL: Hard work, Dedication will be crucial for Horoya’s qualification–Sakin In other clashes billed for Sunday, Zanaco hosts Pyramids, Al-Nasr take on Hassania Agadir, while Al-Masry locks horn against RSB Berkane. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Loading… center_img All roads lead to the Aba Township Stadium Sunday as Enyimba host Horoya AC of Guinea in the first leg Quarterfinals of the CAF Confederation Cup. The peoples Elephants who are currently the only Nigerian team still in contention following the exit of Rangers International will be hoping to post an impressive performance at home before heading for the return leg away to Conakry on March 8. Already Enyimba fans we gathered are being mobilised for massive turnout for the all-important Sunday clash. It is safe to say the Enyimba are a good shape going into Sunday’s clash after winning four out of their last five league matches, with only the 2-0 defeat to Nasarawa United as the only sour point. Interestingly Horoya has equally lost just one match in their last four league matches  going into the clash. If there is one player who is however eager to face Enyimba and perhaps play the spoiler it is Nigerian striker and Horoya forward Bolaji Sakin. Enyimba set to host Horoyalast_img read more

Negros Occ. meat supply ample for holidays – PVO

first_img Janoya said consumers may expect price surges starting next week until the end of the month./PN In terms of price, the PVO reported that, as of last week, almost all commodities remained steady except chicken which increased by P0.3 per kilogram. Janoya also said demand for pork dropped in recent months mainly due to the “scare” created by the African swine fever (ASF). The demand for meat usually peaks during holiday season, Janoya said. “But by the beginning of December, demand for pork started to increase,” he said. BACOLOD City – The Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) assured the public there won’t be a shortage of meat in Negros Occidental this Christmas and New Year celebrations. Dr. Ryan Janoya, head of the Animal Health and Meat Inspection Services of the PVO, said the province has abundant supply of meat. Current average price of pork is also the same, at P220 per kilogram. The ASF scare eventually died down as Negrense consumers realized local pork products were safe for public consumption.last_img read more