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Arkansas Governor thanks CUs for meeting member needs

first_img continue reading » Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson thanked credit unions for their work on behalf of communities across the state, particularly with so many impacted by the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic. Hutchinson has served as governor since 2015.“In the midst of difficult times, Arkansans always find a way to help their neighbors in need. It’s people helping people, which just so happens to be the motto of Arkansas credit unions,” he said. “As you know, the need for many at the moment is financial and our credit unions are assisting Arkansas with that very need in communities across the state.”Hutchinson notes that the support isn’t merely financial, that credit unions across Arkansas have hosted community food drives, supported first responders and worked to encourage and support impacted members.“As we begin to rebuild our economy, credit unions will play a vital role,” he added. ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more


Eco Domus – Certification program for eco-friendly accommodation in the County of Istria / Petra Baldaš Beato, Village experience Baldaši

first_imgPhoto: Village experience Canopies The Eco Domus labeling program is implemented with the aim of increasing social and environmental responsibility in tourism. It is in line with global guidelines for sustainable development and guarantees comprehensive protection of the environment and health.  You mentioned trends. What can we expect in the future?  Tell us something about the Eco Domus program: when was it launched, who is it for and what are its goals? For this purpose, this year, with the aim of promoting sustainable tourism development, informing about existing eco-friendly content in Istria, monitoring trends in the world, and raising awareness of the importance of ecology and networking stakeholders of ecological offer in Istria, we decided to produce the first brochure on eco-friendly content in Istria under the title Istria ecoxperience – All eco from Istria. The brochure also includes Eco Domus facilities, which are thus promoted, both among the domicile population and among domestic and foreign guests. The brochure is distributed through the system of tourist boards in Istria and beyond.  The environment is shaped positively. The local community increased the number of green islands and successively replaced public lighting with an acceptable ecological one. Residents are adapting to the requirements of the new standards. In the certification process itself, the most important thing for us was the availability of a professional advisor. It would be difficult to cope without quality information about manufacturers, types and characteristics of products, or the expected effects. ENERGY: With the aim of saving, energy consumption is monitored and energy-saving lamps are used in at least 80% of lighting fixtures and at least one device of A or more energy class. Our parents had the rare privilege of diverse and fulfilling tourism careers. We have fond memories of the ‘important logistical tasks’ that we, as children, responsibly presented to our guests. I guess it already started there. Tourism is in our home every day and always. This was followed by schooling, language learning, various specializations, first work experiences, focusing on new challenges, IPARD programs, ‘bolder’ borrowing and, today we are shaping – OPG Village Experience Baldaši. Guests react positively. They are currently collaborating. They are happy to take care of the environment even in small communities. They seem to be more environmentally conscious. Eco Domus is intended for small tourist accommodation facilities with a capacity of up to 30 beds, and its goal is to encourage private renters to operate in accordance with the principles of sustainable development and sustainable tourism. Sustainable tourism development is very important because it meets the needs of tourists and the domicile population. It seeks to achieve resource management in such a way that economic, social and environmental needs are met by maintaining cultural integrity, basic ecological processes, biodiversity, and the systems on which life rests.  Joining the Eco Domus program is recommended, because it complements our thinking, motivates the way of life and improves business results. Our goal is to continuously work on promoting and attracting new private renters to get involved in the program. In the next few years, we would like to gather between 50-100 such facilities in Istria that operate in an environmentally friendly manner. As part of the program, we will, as before, organize trainings for the involved landlords about new trends, the importance of sustainable and responsible behavior towards the environment and everything else that can help them in their business. And we will also help them with promotion and connecting with the market. Facilities bearing the Eco Domus sign they met at least 50 basic criteria in 12 categories, which are as follows:  Petra Baldaš Beato is the owner of the Baldaš family farm, which realized this beautiful project in the village of Baldaši near Vižinada, about 15 km from Poreč in the interior of Istria. WE TALKED ABOUT THE ECO DOMUS PROGRAM WITH NADA PRODAN MRAKOVIĆ, HEAD OF THE ADMINISTRATIVE COUNTRIES ADMINISTRATION DEPARTMENT After the first 11 facilities to which they were provided free consulting services about adapting their eco-label facility and who met the criteria and were handed them appropriate tables and promotional materials for marking their accommodation facility, during the last year, 15 new buildings underwent the same procedure, and acquired the right to display the Eco Domus label. We started gradually. In the end, it wasn’t that hard. After a year of doing business with a certificate, how do you look at it now, how does it affect your business? LOCAL VALUES: Local cultural and natural heritage, local lifestyle and traditional fairs and customs are valorized and promoted with the aim of preserving Istrian heritage and authenticity. NOISE AND LIGHT POLLUTION: Silence is important for the health of humans and other living beings. The alternation of day and night, light and darkness, is extremely important for normal biological processes. Therefore, efforts are made to remove sources of noise and light pollution and use luminaires with light temperatures up to 3.000 K. HYGIENE: Only eco-certified toiletries and personal hygiene products are used in order to protect the health of guests and avoid releasing harmful substances into the environment. Was it difficult for you to harmonize your business with the 50 criteria required to obtain the Eco Domus certificate? FOOD AND DRINK: Local food and beverage producers and local cuisine are promoted. Would you recommend others to join the Eco Domus program? Photo: Village experience Canopies What was your motivation for joining the Eco Domus program? It is a continuation of the activities started by the Istra Bike & Bed project with the aim of diversifying and raising the quality of private accommodation in the County of Istria in accordance with the principles of sustainable tourism development.  MOBILITY: When exploring local attractions, it is suggested to use public transport, bicycles that the host can offer or walking instead of using motor vehicles.  WASHING, CLEANING AND DISINFECTION: Only eco-certified washing and cleaning products are used. The introduction of eco-certified products protects the health of staff, guests, the environment and the wider community. As part of the Eco Domus Certification Program for Eco Friendly Accommodation, initiated by the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County, we present one of the first landlords to join the program in early 2017. In addition, we presented specialized facilities, the so-called “Green” channels of promotion and sales, which will connect them with environmentally conscious guests who are looking for just such accommodation.  For this purpose, criteria for the implementation of certification, visual identity and project logo were developed, and over the past two years, public calls for expressions of interest for involvement in the project were conducted in cooperation with external expert Milena Radošević from Aktivist doo from Pula. Photo: Village experience Canopies With the aim of including new facilities in the Eco Domus program, a public call is underway inviting all interested landlords from Istria to join this program, which encourages sustainable and responsible business. Photo: Village experience Canopies How did your guests react to the fact that you have an Eco Domus certificate? For more information about the landlord visit:  What was the hardest for you, and what was the easiest? What is your opinion about the certification process itself and what helped you the most? The public invitation was published on the website of the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County, where you can find all the necessary information, forms and conditions for obtaining the Eco Domus certificate.  WATER: With the aim of saving, water consumption is monitored and jet reducers are used on taps and showers, which reduce consumption by up to 70%.  Initially, we found the 50 criteria of the Eco Domus program very demanding. We singled out the group we cater to, focusing on the group we need to cater to. We consulted the profession, the external advisor of the Istrian County, Mr. Milena Radošević. Little time, little investment – the sequel was not difficult.  WASTE: Waste generation is avoided, natural materials are used, waste is collected and recycled separately. How many renters met the criteria and what are those criteria? GOVERNANCE AND COMMUNICATION: The staff who manage the accommodation facility have been educated about the Eco Domus rules and a policy for the sustainability of the facility has been developed.  INTERIORS AND EXTERIORS: They try to use natural materials and eco-certified products when choosing textiles, paints and varnishes, furniture and other useful items. Eco Domus facilities have undertaken a responsible purchase in the future.  Has Eco Domus encouraged change in other areas of your business or family life? The modus operandi of our family has basically not changed much. It is interesting that on the one hand, no guest complained about, for example, poorer water flow, and we, on the other hand, were surprised by significant economic savings. In particular, our water and electricity bills are, on an annual basis, about a third lower than in previous years! How can those interested apply for the Eco Domus program? SOCIAL ENGAGEMENT: Social engagement in the local community is one of the key elements of sustainable tourism development. Eco Domus facilities create examples of good practice and the owners are often involved in additional activities important for sustainable development. One of the general goals of the Administrative Department for Tourism of the County of Istria is the sustainable development of tourism in Istria, and the development of Istria as a quality tourist destination. Following these goals, which are based on the Master Plan for the Development of Istria Tourism from 2015-2025, the Administrative Department for Tourism of the Istrian County in 2016 launched a new certification program for eco-friendly accommodation called Eco Domus.  In the family farm, he encouraged and brought closer reflections on new thematic services, and individually – it seems that we all read product declarations in turn. These are those prints written in ‘small print’. Let’s choose the least damage !! Life in the countryside gives a stronger ‘touch’ with nature. Nature is the most valuable resource in tourism. This criterion ran from the initial design of the space to the construction and selection of materials, from the planning and selection of content to the final services. We were motivated to join the Eco Domus program. Currently, 3% of international holiday trips are motivated by ecotourism, with a strong tendency to increase in the coming years. Namely, the growing ecological awareness conditions the annual growth of ecotourism between 10-20%. Such facilities are already in high demand in the world today and according to a survey by Tripadvisor, 57% of passengers on their trips choose accommodation, transport or food that meet and apply eco-friendly standards and practices. In addition, 50% of travelers would pay more for accommodation in an eco-friendly accommodation facility. Tell us something about yourself, how did you start doing tourism and why? Criteria for obtaining a certificate can be viewed at this link:  How did your environment react? What are the further activities within the Eco Domus program? Therefore, whether it is done to attract new guests, or for themselves, it is definitely worth investing in raising the environmental standards of accommodation. In addition to the savings that are achieved in the business itself, the environment is preserved, and each invested kuna is returned many times over.last_img read more


The Norwegian government came out with recommendations for travel, Croatia in the “red” group of countries

first_imgThe Norwegian government’s decision takes effect on July 15, and according to the announcements, the Norwegian Institute of Public Health will make a new assessment of which countries meet the new criteria in two weeks. The Norwegian government has come out with a list of countries to which their residents will be able to travel freely from 15 July. The countries are marked in green and red, which means that Norwegians will be able to go on holiday to the “green” countries and return home without going to quarantine. The government has also lifted restrictions on entry to Norway for those countries. On the other hand, the “red” states, including Croatia, have limitations. First and foremost, Norwegian tourists returning to their country from Croatia will definitely have to undergo a ten-day quarantine. There are only seven “red” countries of the European Union and the European Economic Area, which are on the map of the Norwegian government, and in addition to Croatia, there are also Bulgaria, Luxembourg, Portugal, Romania, Hungary, and one part of Sweden. center_img Source and photo: Norwegian Institute of Public Health, Government of the Kingdom of Norwaylast_img read more


France death toll passes 28,000 as virus hits abattoirs

first_imgFrance’s health directorate, the DGS, was not able to tell AFP why there had been a sudden rise in the figures for deaths at care homes. The figures had been updated from those provided by the regional health authorities, they said.The figure for care home deaths have been corrected several times in recent days, reflecting the challenges officials face in collecting and collating the data. Topics : Deaths from the new coronavirus in France passed 28,000 Sunday, the health ministry announced, as officials tried to contain outbreaks in two abattoirs.The latest daily toll, of 483, the largest in several weeks, was made up mainly of deaths in care homes: 429 deaths, compared to only 54 in hospital.Those numbers took France’s total number of deaths from the virus to 28,108.center_img Abattoir ‘clusters’ Health officials meanwhile were battling to contain two outbreaks of the virus at abattoirs that are so far known to have infected around a hundred people.One abattoir is in the central Val de Loire region near the city of Orleans. The other is in the northwestern region of Brittany.Regional health officials said 63 of the 209 workers at the Breton slaughterhouse had so far tested positive for the virus.At the slaughterhouse in Fleury-les-Aubrais, near Orleans, officials there said they had detected a “cluster” of 34 cases among the 400 workers. Another 40 were tested on Sunday with others following on Tuesday. “According to the company’s human resources department, there were masks, gels, temperature readings at the entrance to the slaughterhouse and it seems that the protocol was followed,” said regional prefect Pierre Pouessel.The overall picture in France, however, with a continuing fall in both hospital deaths and admissions for the virus, was better news.Four regions, in the north and the east of the country — including the Paris region — account for 74 percent of the number of people being treated in hospital.Since the virus arrived in France, 98,569 people have been hospitalized, of whom 17,500 had to be treated in intensive care. More that 61,000 have recovered and been allowed home.last_img read more


PensionDanmark meets UK unions over claims of wage-undercutting

first_imgRepresentatives of two of the biggest trade unions in the UK met staff at PensionDanmark this morning over a dispute regarding Croatian workers on two biomass plants the fund invests in.The unions – Unite and GMB – claim Croatian workers are being underpaid in contravention of union agreements at two power plants owned by Copenhagen Infrastructure Partners (CIP). PensionDanmark, the DKK221bn (€29.7bn) labour-market pension fund, is CIP’s biggest investor, alongside other institutional backers.The two power plants concerned are the biomass-fuelled power plant in Rotherham, and a biomass-fired combined heat and power plant project in Kent.Jens-Christian Stougaard, director of PensionDanmark, told IPE: “We had a very pleasant meeting this morning with four representatives from the UK unions. “When we invest – being directly or through CIP – we have, among other things, clauses regarding wage and work conditions which also apply to subcontractors. Of course we do not support undercutting rates.”Some of the points discussed at the meeting had been put forward before, Stougaard said. There had been an ongoing dialogue between the parties involved: Babcock & Wilcox Vølund, Burmeister & Wain Scandinavian Contractor (BWSC), and the two unions.The meeting was part of a programme of action scheduled today in Copenhagen by members of Unite and GMB, which together have around 2m members across various UK industries.Union members handed out leaflets in the city encouraging the Danish public to sign a petition calling on the Danish government to launch an investigation into what the unions called social dumping.The unions claimed that at the Rotherham project, Babcock & Wilcox Vølund was sub-contracting work to Croatian company Duro Dakovic, which had ignored the appropriate collective agreement and was paying workers the minimum wage of £7.20 (€8.44) an hour, less than half the rate in the collective agreement for engineering construction workers (NAECI).Meanwhile at the Kent project, BWSC did not allow trade unions on their site and refused to follow the NAECI agreement, Unite and GMB said.Unite national officer for construction, Bernard McAulay, said: “It is the height of hypocrisy when companies turn a blind eye to allow the exploitation of workers in the UK to boost profits, when such practices are illegal in Denmark.”After the meeting, McAulay told IPE PensionDanmark had said they would come back to the unions and that further meetings would take place.“The key for us is that they listened, and I do believe they’ll do something going forward,” he said.While trade union collective agreements are legal and binding in Denmark, they are not in the UK.last_img read more


Asset management roundup: AXA quant arm adopts AI techniques

first_imgGideon Smith, Europe CIO of Rosenberg Equities, said: “This is the first step in us using neural network techniques and advanced artificial intelligence in client portfolios, but is a natural progression of the advanced quantitative techniques we’ve adopted over the last 30 years.“We believe this is a considered step and consistent with our investment approach of modelling and managing investment risk for clients. It’s an area where we have a wealth of knowledge and expertise and we are excited to leverage these techniques with the aim of improving client results in all areas of the investment process.”The company is also looking at “unstructured data sets” to use alongside traditional financial data, including a language processing tool that can analyse various text-based filings from companies to monitor investor sentiment.BNP Paribas cuts out oil and gas related assetsFrench financial services giant BNP Paribas will stop working with companies involved with extracting oil and gas from tar sands and shale methods. It has also declared it will not finance operations to extract oil from the Arctic region.The company said it was “committed” to aligning with a global initiative to keep global warming below 2°C by the end of the 21st century.Jean-Laurent Bonnafé, CEO of BNP Paribas, said in a statement: “We’re a long-standing partner to the energy sector and we’re determined to support the transition to a more sustainable world.“As an international bank, our role is to help drive the energy transition and contribute to the decarbonisation of the economy. As we have announced, we’re committed to working with and supporting those energy sector partners who have decided to make environmental issues a central part of their business policy.”The bank had previously announced a range of other aims, including €15bn of financing for renewable energy projects by 2020, €100m of investment in startup companies involved in energy transition projects, and withdrawal of financing for coal mines and coal-fired power plants.JP Morgan to launch first European ETFsJP Morgan Asset Management (JPMAM) is to list exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in Europe for the first time. The two strategies are based on strategies “typical of hedge funds”, the company said – specifically, a long-short equity product and a managed futures product.The two funds will list on the London Stock Exchange “imminently”, JPMAM said.Bryon Lake, international head of ETFs at JPMAM, said the launches would be the “first wave”, adding that the company was seeking to build out its “active, strategic beta and alternative beta ETF capabilities”.The company currently runs $2.2bn (€1.9bn) through 13 ETFs listed in the US. Rosenberg Equities, the quantitative investment arm of AXA Investment Managers, has begun using a form of artificial intelligence in its investment process.The company announced today that it had introduced “advanced modelling techniques that specifically utilise neural networks”.Rosenberg has incorporated a neural network system into its sustainable equity strategy. The company said the new model would “improve the strategy’s ability to identify stocks that are at risk of extreme price events”, as well as mitigate tail risks and ultimately seek to improve risk and return outcomes.Neural networks are computer systems designed to “learn” information in a similar way to humans. The technology hit global headlines last year when DeepMind, a machine learning company owned by Google, used its algorithm to learn the boardgame Go and subsequently beat one of the world’s top players.last_img read more


Teacher charged over euthanasia drug

first_imgCharges laid over importing euthanasia drugStuff 28 October 2016Family First Comment: And this is why the police must be vigilant and investigate any risk to people of them being encouraged – and given the means – to commit suicide. A Hutt Valley teacher has been charged with importing a drug used for euthanasia.Susan Dale Austen, 65, listed as a teacher from Maungaraki, faces one charge of importing the narcotic sedative pentobarbitone between March 2012 and October 2016, and one of importing on September 30.She appeared before a Wellington District Court registrar and was remanded until February without entering a plea.A previous application for name suppression was not renewed. read more


Candle light vigil in honor of Jeff Joe tonight

first_img Share Tweet Jeff JosephThe community of St Joseph will be staging a special event tonight in honor of the late Jeff Joseph.Parliamentary Representative for the Layou Constituency Kevler Darroux says a candle light vigil will be helf to recognize the contributions which Jeff Joseph made to St Joseph.He says several officials are expected to attend the candle light vigil which will commence on the Jeff Joe’s lane on Backstreet.“We want to recognize him and his contribution to the community and Dominica. Officials from the Ministry of Tourism, Discover Dominica Authority and musicians will also be present. Others whose lives have been touched by Jeff Joseph are also expected to attend. He has contributed significantly both to the musical and cultural aspect of the country,” he said.Darroux said Joseph would want the nation to remember him in a joyous way and not in a sorrowful manner.“I know this is the way he wants us to remember him. He wouldn’t want us to cry over him,”.Dominica Vibes News 8 Views   no discussions Sharecenter_img Sharing is caring! LocalNews Candle light vigil in honor of Jeff Joe tonight by: – November 25, 2011 Sharelast_img read more


Trump Tweets on Abortion Ban Exemptions

first_imgPresident Trump is chiming in on the abortion debate, as more states pass laws prohibiting the procedures.Trump tweeted on Saturday evening that he favors certain exemptions in abortion bans.….for Life in 2020. If we are foolish and do not stay UNITED as one, all of our hard fought gains for Life can, and will, rapidly disappear!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2019 Georgia Governor Brian Kemp this month also signed into law the so-called “fetal heartbeat” bill. It bans abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected, which can happen as early as six weeks, before most women know they are pregnant. As most people know, and for those who would like to know, I am strongly Pro-Life, with the three exceptions – Rape, Incest and protecting the Life of the mother – the same position taken by Ronald Reagan. We have come very far in the last two years with 105 wonderful new…..— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2019 ….Federal Judges (many more to come), two great new Supreme Court Justices, the Mexico City Policy, and a whole new & positive attitude about the Right to Life. The Radical Left, with late term abortion (and worse), is imploding on this issue. We must stick together and Win….— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2019 Trump’s position differs from the one taken by Alabama Republicans, who last week passed a near-total ban on abortions. That ban allows exceptions only “to avoid a serious health risk to the unborn child’s mother,” in cases of ectopic pregnancy and if the “unborn child has a lethal anomaly.”An attempt by Democrats to exempt rape and incest victims failed.As most people know, and for those who would like to know, I am strongly Pro-Life, with the three exceptions – Rape, Incest and protecting the Life of the mother – the same position taken by Ronald Reagan. We have come very far in the last two years with 105 wonderful new…..— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 19, 2019last_img read more