first_imgThe City Budget Season is upon us. It is hard to comprehend that over one year ago, Mr. Hedden partner of the Umbaugh & Associates, CPA group suggested that our City institute a “Spending Plan”  The Winnecke Administration never presented from July of 2014 to now any specifics on that recommended “Spending Plan”.   we were supplied a tweet from the Mayors Chief of Staff,  Steve Scheafer that the “Spending Plan” was the 2016 proposed budget?After reviewing the fiscal year ending June 30. 2015, the operational funds declined by $9 million dollars compared to a decline of $5.9 million  dollars for the same period ending June 30, 2014.  Obviously, we have had an approximate shortfall issue of $9.0 million  dollars which has proven to be the exact amount of overspending deficit the Administration has been recording over the last three years. an average of $9 million of deficient spending in the operational funds.The composite of total spending in the the 2016 budget for the City is $205,000,000 and the revenue estimates are $209,000,000.  It appears that City have a surplus under the way.  In 2014 the Winnecke Administration estimated that our revenues to be $202,000,000 but we only collected $185,000,000, a  collection rate of 92% . In 2013, the estimates were $198,000,000 but we collected only $180,000,000, a collection rate of 91%. History has proven, between 90% to 92% collection rate should be expected. In review of our proposed budget as presented.   the actual revenues collected would be approximately $190,000,000 and the expenditures as presented are $205,000,000 a mere $15,000,000 out of balance budget.Mayor Winnecke boosted that he spent $5 million dollars less than what the City Council authorized him to spend in 2014.  We should expect him to make the same claim in 2016.   Consequently,  City  Council  been patiently waiting for that “Spending Plan” that Mr. Schaefer’s tweeted that stated “it’s in our budget.”Could an alternative “Spending Plan” actually could be a  “Revenue Enhancement Plan”?  Mr. Lloyd indicated to City Council that “Fees and Licenses” were going to be considered.   Could an increase in the County “Income Tax Rate” be up for consideration?What a dreadful notion that Evansville could  follows the lead of Ft. Wayne and raise  the “County Option Tax Rate”.Based on the above facts, that  City Council has much to consider concerning the 2016 City budget.Respectfully Submitted,John E. Friend, CPA5th Ward City Council© 2015 Microsoft Terms Privacy & cookies Developers English (United States)FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

first_imgExpenses such baseball’s long season and the lower stadium costs of indoor sports juggle the rankings by “profit margin” — operation income vs. sales: football’s still No. 1, averaging 23 percent, then there’s basketball at 21 percent and hockey at 16 percent before baseball’s 9 percent.Knowing that context, here’s a look at how Forbes values local pro sports franchises, and how the magazine sees revenues and operating income, presented in order of valuation.#1 Lakers“Showtime” is SoCal’s MVP — Most Valuable Property — worth $3.3 billion, a value that’s No. 5 among all pro sports teams and second in the NBA. That valuation was up $300 million in a year or 10 percent.Note: This valuation was done last season before the team acquired superstar LeBron James.Revenues were pegged at $371 million and were No. 2 for sales dollars in the region. Income was $136 million, tops in Southern California. And the estimated operating margin was sky-high 37 percent, easily No. 1 in the region.#2 RamsThe return of the Rams to Los Angeles was good for business.The team is valued at $3.2 billion, No. 4 in the league and No. 7 in pro sports. That’s up $209 million in a year or 7 percent.Rams’ revenues run $366 million, No. 3 in the region. Income is at $68 million, Southern California’s No. 2. That puts margins at 19 percent, No. 3 in the region.#3 DodgersA World Series run for baseball’s Blue Crew was a money maker.The team is worth $3 billion, No. 2 in the league and No. 11 in pro sports. That’s up $248 million in a year or 9 percent.The team generated the region’s most revenue ($522 million) and was second in income ($68 million). But that translates to a margin of 13 percent, No. 6 in the region.#4 ChargersIt’s unclear if the move up the 5 freeway was a good financial idea.Forbes says the Chargers’ value was stagnant in the year at $2.28 billion, No. 22 in the league and No. 33 in pro sports.Revenues run $346 million and income’s $48 million with a 14 percent margin. All rank No. 4 in the region.#5 ClippersPlaying the Lakers’ shadow is a decent business.The Clippers are worth $2.15 billion, No. 8 in the league and No. 35 in pro sports. That’s up $141 million in a year or 7 percent.Revenues at $257 million, No. 5 in the region. Income of $35 million, Southern California’s No. 6. Margin of 14 percent, No. 5 locally.#6 AngelsHaving baseball’s top player — Mike Trout — hasn’t been a huge boost to this Anaheim-based franchise’s net worth. And one playoff appearance in nine years doesn’t help.A value of $1.8 billion — No. 8 in baseball and No. 46 in pro sports — is up $52 million in a year or a subpar 3 percent.Revenues at $334 million ranks as Southern California’s No. 5. Income of $25 million and a 7 percent margin were both next-to-last in the region.#7 PadresBeing San Diego’s only “home” team — minus the Chargers — was good for values.The Padres’ $1.26 billion worth may be No. 17 in baseball and only No. 69 in pro sports, but that’s up $145 million in a year or 13 percent — the biggest percentage jump in Southern California.It’s a relatively small business: Revenues at $266 million are Southern California’s No. 6. Income of $26 million and a margin of 10 percent, were both No. 7 regionally.#8 KingsIce hockey in this warm climate works financially for the Kings.The team is valued at $810 million, a surprisingly strong No. 6 in the NHL though No. 98 in pro sports. That’s up a noteworthy $60 million in a year or 8 percent.Revenues at $193 million, No. 8 in the region. Income of $44 million, Southern California’s No. 8. But an eye-catching 23 percent margin is No. 2 in the region.#9 DucksThe billionaire Samuelli family owns the Anaheim team for more than cash flow.Despite one of the league’s top win-loss records in the past decade, the team’s value was unchanged in the past year at $460 million, a middling No. 18 in the league and a low No. 110 out of 123 pro teams.Revenues were only $134 million as Forbes says the team had a lost $2 million in operating income — Southern California’s worst pro sports financial performance. But also ponder that pro sports teams aren’t small businesses.Local franchises had collective revenues estimated at $2.79 billion and $448 million in total operating incomes in the respective years ended in 2018. That suggests Southern California teams are proportionally less profitable, as those tallies translate to average profit margins of 16 percent vs. 18 percent among the 123 pro teams in the four leagues.Now, pro sports leagues, as businesses, each look very different by Forbes’ math. Simply put: Football is huge, hockey is tiny and baseball and basketball fit in between.Take the average league-wide team values: football is No. 1 at $2.5 billion, followed by the National Basketball Association at $1.65 billion; Major League Baseball at $1.64 billion and the National Hockey League at $620 million.Or peek at revenues: top average sales were in football ($405 million per team) then baseball ($315 million), basketball ($246 million) and hockey ($154 million). PreviousThe billionaire Samuelli family owns the Anaheim team for more than cash flow. Despite one of the league’s top win-loss records in the past decade, the team’s value was unchanged in the past year at $460 million, a middling No. 18 in the league and a low No. 110 out of 123 pro teams. Arizona Coyotes defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin, left, checks Anaheim Ducks left wing Andrew Cogliano into the glass during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Dec. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)The Lakers are SoCal’s MVP — Most Valuable Property — worth $3.3 billion, a value that’s No. 5 among all pro sports teams and second in the NBA. That valuation was up $300 million in a year or 10 percent. Los Angeles Lakers’ Tyson Chandler (5) dunks the ball in front of Brooklyn Nets’ Jarrett Allen (31) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, in New York. The Nets won115-110. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)The return of the Rams to Los Angeles was good for business. The team is valued at $3.2 billion, No. 4 in the league and No. 7 in pro sports. That’s up $209 million in a year or 7 percent. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsA World Series run for baseball’s Blue Crew was a money maker. The team is worth $3 billion, No. 2 in the league and No. 11 in pro sports. That’s up $248 million in a year or 9 percent.Los Angeles Dodgers Yasiel Puig, #66, looks to the sky after hitting a 3-run homer in game four of the World Series at Dodger Stadium on Saturday, October 27, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Keith Birmingham, Pasadena Star-News/SCNG)It’s unclear if the move up the 5 freeway was a good financial idea. Forbes says the Chargers’ value was stagnant in the year at $2.28 billion, No. 22 in the league and No. 33 in pro sports. Revenues run $346 million and income’s $48 million with a 14 percent margin. All rank No. 4 in the region. Seen here, Los Angeles Chargers running back Melvin Gordon (28) scores a touchdown in the third quarter at the StubHub Center in Carson on Saturday, Dec. 22, 2018. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze/SCNG)Playing the Lakers’ shadow is a decent business. The Clippers are worth $2.15 billion, No. 8 in the league and No. 35 in pro sports. That’s up $141 million in a year or 7 percent. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon)Having baseball’s top player — Mike Trout — hasn’t been a huge boost to this Anaheim-based franchise’s net worth. And one playoff appearance in nine years doesn’t help. A value of $1.8 billion — No. 8 in baseball and No. 46 in pro sports — is up $52 million in a year or a subpar 3 percent. The Los Angeles Angels Mike Trout celebrates in the dugout with teammates after scoring on an Albert Pujols double during the first inning at Angel Stadium in Anaheim, CA on Tuesday, August 22, 2017. (Photo by Kevin Sullivan, Orange County Register/SCNG)Being San Diego’s only “home” team — minus the Chargers — was good for values. The Padres’ $1.26 billion worth may be No. 17 in baseball and only No. 69 in pro sports, but that’s up $145 million in a year or 13 percent — the biggest percentage jump in Southern California. (AP Photo/San Diego Union-Tribune, EarHoward Lipin)Ice hockey in this warm climate works financially for the Kings. The team is valued at $810 million, a surprisingly strong No. 6 in the NHL though No. 98 in pro sports. That’s up a noteworthy $60 million in a year or 8 percent. The Los Angeles Kings host Pittsburgh at the Staples Center in Los Angeles Thursday, January 18, 2018. (Photo by Thomas R. Cordova Daily News/SCNG)The billionaire Samuelli family owns the Anaheim team for more than cash flow. Despite one of the league’s top win-loss records in the past decade, the team’s value was unchanged in the past year at $460 million, a middling No. 18 in the league and a low No. 110 out of 123 pro teams. Arizona Coyotes defenseman Ilya Lyubushkin, left, checks Anaheim Ducks left wing Andrew Cogliano into the glass during the second period of an NHL hockey game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Dec. 29, 2018. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)The Lakers are SoCal’s MVP — Most Valuable Property — worth $3.3 billion, a value that’s No. 5 among all pro sports teams and second in the NBA. That valuation was up $300 million in a year or 10 percent. Los Angeles Lakers’ Tyson Chandler (5) dunks the ball in front of Brooklyn Nets’ Jarrett Allen (31) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, in New York. The Nets won115-110. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)NextShow Caption1 of 9The Lakers are SoCal’s MVP — Most Valuable Property — worth $3.3 billion, a value that’s No. 5 among all pro sports teams and second in the NBA. That valuation was up $300 million in a year or 10 percent. Los Angeles Lakers’ Tyson Chandler (5) dunks the ball in front of Brooklyn Nets’ Jarrett Allen (31) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2018, in New York. The Nets won115-110. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)ExpandThe addition of two professional football teams to Southern California’s already crowded entertainment options seemingly has not hurt values of the nine franchises in four major leagues that call the region home, if Forbes magazine is correct.I filled my trusty spreadsheet with sports business data from Forbes and learned these nine local teams are valued at a combined $18.3 billion, up $1.16 billion or 6.8 percent over 2017 measurements. Remember, two National Football League teams relocated to Los Angeles in 2017 — the Rams, from St. Louis, and the Chargers, from San Diego.Pro sports values are on an overall upswing, according to Forbes’ math. The 123 teams in the four major pro leagues were collectively valued at $197 billion, up $14.8 billion in a year. That’s equal to an 8.1 percent one-year gain — better than the local teams’ average appreciation.Please note that recent popularity swings, wins and losses, and/or managerial or roster moves may not be fully reflected in the data. Forbes valuations are not real-time measures — basketball’s report was done in the middle of last season; football and baseball early in their respective 2018 seasons; and hockey’s study was recently released.center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorlast_img read more

first_imgHUGE CROWD TURNS UP TO TOAST McGETTIGANS’ OPENING – PIC SPECIAL was last modified: December 6th, 2013 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:clanree hotelMcGettigans Pubopening nightlast_img read more

first_imgCrescent City >> The Arcata boys and girls basketball teams swept Del Norte for important Big 5 road victories.Arcata boys beat Del Norte in low-scoring affairIt doesn’t always have to be pretty to be effective.Depending on perspective, the Del Norte Warriors and Arcata Tigers either staged a battle for the ages or a battle for the aged in their Big 5 match-up at Thunen Gymnasium in Crescent City Wednesday evening. “I think we may have set the game of basketball back about 50 …last_img read more

first_imgSophomore quarterback Shane Purcell earned his first start of the season and came up big for Arcata High, throwing two touchdown passes in a 20-7 win over visiting Willits Saturday afternoon at the Redwood Bowl.Saturday’s win counts as Arcata’s first of the season.“Our defense played solid all night. Really, it doesn’t get much better than that,” Arcata head coach Jamal Jones said.Purcell hit Raven Perez for a 3-yard touchdown with under a minute to play in the first half, sending Arcata …last_img read more

first_imgA fossil Cambrian arthropod shows a large complex brain, prompting evolutionists to propose that evolution ran backwards from there.“Complex brains evolved much earlier than previously thought, 520-million-year-old fossilized arthropod confirms” is how PhysOrg headlined a press release from University of Arizona that found “remarkably well-preserved brain structures” in a fossil from China.  A similar headline is found on Science Daily:  “Cambrian Fossil Pushes Back Evolution of Complex Brains.”  Science Now announced, “Spider ancestor had big brain.”  The press release continued the un-Darwinian refrain:The remarkably well-preserved fossil of an extinct arthropod shows that anatomically complex brains evolved earlier than previously thought and have changed little over the course of evolution. According to University of Arizona neurobiologist Nicholas Strausfeld, who co-authored the study describing the specimen, the fossil is the earliest known to show a brain.Cambrian arthropods, including trilobites, clearly had brains, but this one preserved the imprint of soft brain matter so clearly that scientists were able to trace the neural pathways from the brain to the eye stalks.  The press release states that it “represents an extinct lineage of arthropods combining an advanced brain anatomy with a primitive body plan.”  They must mean “primitive” with respect to age on the evolutionary timeline, else why would a “primitive” animal need a complex brain?  One of the researchers, Nicholas Strausfeld, said, “In principle, Fuxianhuia‘s is a very modern brain in an ancient animal.”  Live Science suggested “primitive” equates with “simple” – “The rest of the animal is incredibly simple, so it’s a big surprise to see a brain that is so advanced, as it were, in such a simple animal,” Strausfeld told Live Science.In the press release, Stausfeld, a neurobiologist at the University of Arizona, made other statements that run counter to evolutionary expectations, even though he assumed the brain evolved:The fossil supports the idea that once a basic brain design had evolved, it changed little over time, he explained. Instead, peripheral components such as the eyes, the antennae and other appendages, sensory organs, etc., underwent great diversification and specialized in different tasks but all plugged into the same basic circuitry.“It is remarkable how constant the ground pattern of the nervous system has remained for probably more than 550 million years,” Strausfeld added. “The basic organization of the computational circuitry that deals, say, with smelling, appears to be the same as the one that deals with vision, or mechanical sensation.”Another evolutionary expectation was shattered by this fossil.  Fuxianhuia protensa is a malacostracan, a group with complex brains, including crabs and shrimp.  Evolutionists preferred to believe that insects evolved from simpler-brained branchiopods (including brine shrimp).  The discovery of a complex brain deep in the Cambrian explosion shatters not only that expectation but turns evolution backwards:Because the brain anatomy of branchiopods is much simpler than that of malacostracans, they have been regarded as the more likely ancestors of the arthropod lineage that would give rise to insects.However, the discovery of a complex brain anatomy in an otherwise primitive organism such as Fuxianhuia makes this scenario unlikely. “The shape [of the fossilized brain] matches that of a comparable sized modern malacostracan,” the authors write in Nature. They argue the fossil supports the hypothesis that branchiopod brains evolved from a previously complex to a more simple architecture instead of the other way around.The paper in Nature by Stausfeld, a Londoner and two Chinese colleagues stated that “early-diverging arthropods have scarcely been analysed in the context of nervous system evolution.”  This was, therefore, the first and clearest opportunity to analyze it with Fuxianhuia, “exhibiting the most compelling neuroanatomy known from the Cambrian.”  The authors had to make the astounding claim that later branchiopods underwent an “evolutionary reduction” in brain structure instead of the progressive increase as would have been expected.  “The early origin of sophisticated brains provides a probable driver for versatile visual behaviours, a view that accords with compound eyes from the early Cambrian that were, in size and resolution, equal to those of modern insects and malacostracans,” the abstract stated. (Ma, Hou, Edgecomb and Strausfed, “Complex brain and optic lobes in an early Cambrian arthropod,” Nature 490, 11 Oct 2012, pp. 258–261, doi:10.1038/nature11495.)However they sliced it, the authors had to conclude that “the brain and optic lobes of Fuxianhuia suggest that the arthropod nervous system acquired complexity by the early Cambrian.”  The editor’s summary of the paper stated again what this fossil means for evolutionary theory:The Cambrian explosion refers to a time around 530 million years ago, when animals with modern features first appeared in the fossil record. The fossils of Cambrian arthropods reveal sophisticated sense organs such as compound eyes, but other parts of the nervous system are usually lost to decay before fossilization. This paper describes an exquisitely preserved brain in an early arthropod from China, complete with antennal nerves, optic tract and optic neuropils very much like those of modern insects and crustaceans. This suggests that if insects evolved from quite simple creatures such as branchiopod shrimps, then modern branchiopods have undergone a drastic reduction in the complexity of their nervous systems.The authors found about 50 specimens in various orientations, leading them to infer that “the eye stalk assemblage possessed a considerable degree of rotational freedom and thus allowed active vision“.  The preservation was so remarkable that they were easily able to compare structures with those from living malacostracans, insects and chilopods, each group having a similar tripartite brain.  “Indeed, it is expected that optic lobes would have already evolved sophisticated circuits even more deeply in the arthropod stem-group, enabling high-level visual processing of the kind presumed to be associated with large compound eyes belonging to the stem-group arthropod Anomalocaris.”Spin DoctoringIn the same issue of Nature, Graham E. Budd tried to rescue evolution from this evidence, using the worn-out cliche that the fossil “may shed new light” on how brain tissues evolved.  His opening paragraph is a masterpiece of spin doctoring, listing various unexpected fossil surprises as triumphs for evolution:Even to palaeontologists, the fossil record can resemble the chaotic attic of an eccentric relative, stacked with ancient bric-a-brac of dubious usefulness. But the record has recently been throwing up some surprises that are bringing new order to this jumble. Our concept of dinosaurs, for example, has evolved from what were essentially bolted-together lumps of bone into living creatures covered in graceful feathers — and in colour too. Other fossil finds have brought changes to the scale of our understanding of evolution. For example, the discovery of exceptionally well-preserved fossil muscle fibres throughout the record and fossilized embryos from at least the Cambrian period, some 500 million years ago, have provided remarkable insight into the fine-scale evolution of these tissues and life stages. Now, on page 258 of this issue, Ma and colleagues describe preserved nervous tissue from the Cambrian — a find that grants palaeontologists access to the exclusive zoological club of those who study the brain and nervous system.None of these “surprises” were anticipated by evolutionists, yet Budd described them all as providing “insight into the fine-scale evolution” of life stages.  But clearly, in his own words, the only thing that has “evolved” is their “concept” of how evolution works.  How complex muscle fibers and embryos from the earliest parts of the record could provide “insight” into evolution was left unexplained.  His reference to dinosaurs covered in colorful feathers is also dubious.From there, Budd disputed the authors’ claim that complex brains appeared early in the arthropod lineage.  His alternative?  “Convergent evolution” (see 10/08/2012) or else a grab bag of rearrangement options:However, there are two potential alternatives to this far-reaching conclusion. It is possible that the arrangement in Fuxianhuia is convergent to that in the modern crustaceans or insects; in other words, similar brain assemblies to that reported for Fuxianhuia evolved again in later arthropods. Or it may be that we need to rethink the systematic position of Fuxianhuia. That latter option would entail a substantial rearrangement of our present understanding of early arthropod evolution — not least in the highly vexed issue of the ‘great appendage problem’. This refers to the controversial identity of a large anterior appendage found in many Cambrian arthropods, and seemingly also in the Fuxianhuia specimen described here. Discovering which part of the brain this structure is innervated from will add vital information to this debate. Either way, Ma and colleagues’ findings will prompt hasty re-examination of many old specimens, and quite possibly some recasting of recent theories.(Graham E. Budd, “Palaeontology: Cambrian nervous wrecks,” Nature 490, 11 October 2012, pp. 180–181, doi:10.1038/490180a.)We want to help our buddy Budd recast some recent theories without having to do any hasty re-examination of old specimens.  Appealing to the fossil evidence, we point out abrupt appearance of all the animal body plans in the Cambrian explosion, with complex brains evident in the early Cambrian and no transitional forms.  From there, diversification and simplification occurs according to built-in variability and adaptation mechanisms, but the original complex designs endure.  This theory of descent is known as intelligent design.  Reference: Darwin’s Dilemma. (Visited 66 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

first_img1 April 2009South African consumer confidence rebounded in the first quarter of the year despite the global economy deteriorating further since November 2008, with the FNB/Bureau for Economic Research (BER) consumer confidence index rising by five points.According to First National Bank (FNB) and the BER, economic growth has contracted sharply in many countries, with share prices collapsing and millions of workers losing their jobs.“The global economy is heading for its biggest contraction since the Second World War,” First National Bank chief economist Cees Bruggemans said in a statement this week.“Consumer confidence has dropped to record lows in the USA. In light of these developments, the increase in the [FNB/BER index] bucks the US trend.”Positive developmentsAccording to Bruggemans, a number of developments supported consumer confidence in South Africa during the survey period and partly explain the increase in consumer confidence.This included the 150 basis point interest rate cut since December, with prospects for further declines (the survey was conducted before a further 100 basis points cut was announced on 24 March); a drop in the petrol price between November and February; the decline in inflation; a relatively stable rand exchange rate; and a confidence boosting national Budget announced on 11 February.“The Budget was positive for households,” Bruggemans said. “Households will benefit indirectly, as the fiscal stimulus partly counters the slump in economic activity.”The Budget included a number of measures to increase the disposable income of households directly, such as the additional R13-billion set aside for social grants and the R4.1-billion for the expanded public works programme.“Furthermore, the personal income tax scales were adjusted to fully compensate for inflation,” he said. “However, the increase in the fuel levy will partly offset the benefit of the tax rate adjustment.”Economy, households, durable goodsThe FNB/BER consumer confidence index survey is based on three questions, namely the expected performance of the economy, the expected financial situation of households, and the appropriateness of the present time to buy durable goods (such as furniture, appliances, electronic equipment, and motor vehicles).Despite the net percentage of consumers rating the present as an inappropriate time to buy durable goods remaining more or less unchanged relative to the fourth quarter of 2008, the net percentage expecting their own finances and the economy to improve during the next 12 months increased.The own finances sub-index increased from +9 to +15 and the economic performance sub-index from -5 to +4.“The reason why the own finances sub-index increased during [the first quarter of 2009] is probably because the positive impact of the interest rate cuts, lower petrol price and national budget fully countered the adverse impact of the job losses and fall in house prices,” said Bruggemans.High debt, no creditPossible reasons why consumers continued to rate the present as an inappropriate time to buy durable goods are their high debt burdens, increased difficulty in obtaining credit, a stock effect and the decline in residential building activity.The low level of the time to buy durable goods sub-index indicates dismal growth in spending on durable goods, Bruggemans said, adding that credit spending would also remain weak.“With the time to buy durable goods sub-index low and the economic performance and own finances sub-indices high, any rise in real disposable income should lead to increased consumer spending on non-durable goods and services,” he said. “Such a rise in real disposable income could happen if the positive impact of the lower interest rate and inflation continues to outweigh the negative effect of job losses.”SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

first_imgBut airport consultants dispute that claim saying that T1 only has seven gates and often they are all being used with some passengers having to walk across the tarmac to get to their plane. “The Premier, as Tourism Minister as well, needs to urgently call in all parties for a roundtable discussion to seek a resolution that secures the flights for WA,” he said. “It would be disappointing for Perth if we lost this flight on Mr Barnett’s watch.” Qantas’ plans to launch a London to Australia non-stop service appear grounded after Perth Airport all but closed the door on the airline’s hopes to run the prestigious international route on its brand new long-range 787 aircraft.At issue is the airport’s demand that Qantas operate the service from the airport’s international terminal whereas Qantas needs to operate the flight from its domestic facilities to seamlessly hub with other domestic flights connecting passengers to and from cities and towns across Western Australia and Australia. However, Qantas’ need relates to seamlessly transferring passengers off intrastate and interstate flights to the non-stop flight and this can only be done at the domestic terminal. “I would then expect Qantas to move across to the T1 international terminal,” he said. “Securing the western gateway hub through Perth Airport will be a boost to our State and I am optimistic that an agreement will be reached soon.” Qantas insists it will only operate the flights from its domestic terminal facility on the western side of the airport, which require A$25 million of upgrades to handle international flights, including customs facilities. Perth Airport has all but rejected Qantas’ proposal to develop WA into a western hub for non-stop operations to Europe. The service would be, for instance, ideal for Qantas Adelaide and Brisbane passengers who do not currently have a Qantas option to Europe without backtracking via Melbourne or Sydney. Over the weekend, the airport issued a press statement saying that while it supported a direct London flight, it would have to operated from Terminal 1 international on the eastern side of the airport. Yesterday a senior Qantas spokesman said that the airline had long supported the airport’s plan to operations to an expanded T1 “but the simple reality is that it won’t be ready for about another eight years”. Qantas is expected to grow the service from a daily flight to London to add Paris, Frankfurt and possibly Rome services building the annual potential value to WA and Australia to $650 million and 7000 jobs based on government tourism spend figures. Perth Airport’s chief executive Kevin Brown said that it “has offered Qantas a generous multi-million-dollar incentive package’’ to leverage off the existing fit for purpose facilities in Terminal 1 International.’’center_img For many Europeans the big obstacle to travelling Australia is the time and stops required and the proposed non-stop service eliminates both. Studies have shown that a non-stop will grow a route by up to 300 per cent. They point out that the highest priority for the airport is to build a new international satellite terminal – T5 – to accommodate the growth in demand. While the Qantas proposal appears dead Perth Airport added that the airline had submitted additional information to the airport in relation to the proposed new service which it is currently reviewing. The non-stop flight is expected to draw from passengers not only to and from WA but also from the eastern states. The State Premier Mr Barnett repeated his comments of last week that he was prepared to accept an “interim” solution of Qantas operating direct UK/Europe flights from T3/T4 for the next five years.  “The opportunity to create a Western Hub with the Perth-London flight will be here in 18 months, and the only place we can do that in a seamless way that actually makes it viable is the proposal we’ve put to Perth Airport to use our existing domestic terminals for international flights,” the spokesman said. “We’re optimistic that common sense will prevail.” “T1 International has the capacity to accommodate direct services to the UK and Europe, and these services can commence from T1 International at any time,” he said. Typically, the passenger mix will be split equally between Australians and international visitors. State Opposition Leader Mark McGowan said he understood it was a commercial matter to be negotiated between Perth Airport and Qantas, but it was also an important issue for the State.last_img read more

first_imgUS authorities have been warned by Asia-Pacific airlines against taking “ill-judged reactionary measures’’ that could threaten the global economy by imposing costs for no tangible security benefit.A strongly-worded statement from the Association of Asia Pacific Airlines warns that any move by the US to expand the ban on laptops and large electronic items in the cabins of aircraft operating US-bound flights could also undermine public confidence in aviation security.AAPA joins the International Air Transport Association, the European Union and travel bodies in urging the US to look again at proposals to expand the ban to European destinations and possibly wider.AAPA director general Andrew Herdman said the association understood the need to maintain the highest level of security in air transport and were committed to working with government security agencies and others.“Despite recent events, public confidence in the safety and security of air travel remains high,’’ Herdman said. “It would be a tragedy if that confidence were to be undermined by ill-judged reactionary measures being misguidedly imposed by those entrusted with maintaining public safety.“The ripple effects of such measures, and their proposed wider expansion, threaten to disrupt the global economy and impose far greater costs on society with no tangible public security benefits.“This would only serve to further the aims of the terrorists, who measure their success by how much society over-reacts to their provocations.’’Herman said past experience with terrorist threats repeatedly highlighted the critical importance of effective intelligence gathering and analysis rather than a focus on generalised screening.He urged governments to work more closely with the International Civil Aviation Organisation and the industry.“Good security is all about comprehensive threat assessment and balanced risk management, not the elimination of every conceivable risk,’’ he said. “Aviation security is a collective global responsibility and requires effective consultation to ensure that security measures are practical, cost effective and sustainable whilst minimising the impact on the wider travelling public.’’AAPA also noted airlines had invested heavily in technology to allow passengers to use their personal electronic devices on aircraft and passengers were already subject to “onerous and inconsistent” screening measures prior to boarding a flight.It said safety issues relating to big numbers of lithium battery-powered devices stowed in an aircraft cargo bay, contrary to recognized best safety practices, also remain unresolved.While the US Department of Homeland Security has yet to make a decision on expanding the ban imposed in March on North African and Middle Eastern airports, it has confirmed it is considering the option.However, it has labelled as incorrect conflicting reports it is looking at extending the ban to all flights to the US and that it has shelved the expansion proposal.Representatives from the EU and the US are due to meet for further discussions on the issue.last_img read more

first_img24 April 2014The countdown to the 2014 IRB Women’s Rugby World Cup in France reached exactly 100 days for the Springbok Women on Wednesday. They face Australia in their opening pool match in Marcoussis.The Springbok Women will be appearing in their third successive World Cup, but have been handed a tough draw in Pool C. Apart from the Australians, they will also take on hosts France and Wales.The 39-member preliminary World Cup squad, which includes the 15 contracted Springbok Women’s Sevens players, have been hard at work since January preparing for the tournament.ConfidentCaptain Mandisa Williams said in a statement that she was confident this would pay off when her teams takes to the field in Marcoussis on 1 August.“This is an exciting time for the Springbok Women,” she said. “The fact that there are only 100 days to go to the World Cup has definitely sparked excitement among the players because we have been working very hard towards this goal. But I have no doubt that this will also trigger some nerves because we now have only a little over three months to complete our preparations and reach our peak form.”Williams added: “It is amazing how time flies. We began our preparations in January and all of the sudden there is a sense of urgency to make sure all the structures are in place and that players are as fit as can be. But we are excited about the tournament and we are optimistic that all the late nights at training and the weekend field sessions will pay off.”The Springbok Women will participate in the South African Rugby Union’s Women’s Interprovincial tournament for their respective provinces in the next two months, with the competition kicking off on Friday.Training campThe preliminary squad will then be reduced, with the players set to participate in a training camp at the High Performance Centre in Pretoria from 18 to 24 June before departing for Europe on 25 June for a Pre-World Cup tour.The tour will feature two clashes against the Nomads in London and a match against France.The clash against the French, who are the Women’s Six Nations champions, in particular, will be vital in the team’s preparations for what is expected to be their toughest pool clash at the World Cup, as it will give them an idea about what to expect from the hosts, while simultaneously allowing them to familiarise themselves with the country.‘Invaluable game time’“The pre-World Cup tour will be important in our preparation because it will offer us invaluable game time against quality opposition, while also exposing us to the playing conditions in Europe close to the World Cup,” Williams said.“We are also grateful that we will face France before the World Cup because there is no doubt they will enter the tournament as one of the favourites after winning the Women’s Six Nations competition and also since they will have the luxury of home ground advantage.”The women will reassemble in Stellenbosch on 14 July for their World Cup holding camp where the final touches will be made to their game plan for the showpiece, with the final 26-member World Cup squad departing for France on 27 July.Springbok Women 2014 WRWC Pool Fixtures 1 Aug: Springbok Women v Australia – Marcoussis5 Aug: Springbok Women v France – Marcoussis9 Aug: Springbok Women v Wales – Marcoussis SAinfo reporterlast_img read more