Jim James Releases Universe-Inspired Track To Promote NASA’s Mission To Jupiter

first_imgIn efforts to promote “The Juno Mission,” NASA has partnered with Apple Music to recruit artists to contribute new music to celebrate their mission to Jupiter’s orbit on July 4th. The songs are all universe-inspired, and are designed to “enhance the agency’s efforts to inform and excite the public about dramatic missions of exploration like Juno.” In addition to Weezer, Trent Reznor, GZA, and others, Jim James of My Morning Jacket has also contributed to the project in marking the historic occasion.The song, “Everything (The Universe),” features Lydia Burrell and is currently available on iTunes. You can listen to a clip of it below:According to Rolling Stone, the song morphs from a “spectral, moody opening” to “travelling at warp speed, finally exploding into a psychedelic guitar freak out in the latter quarter of James’ space opera.” The song’s final lyrics read: “The universe can only be as big as my mind.”The Juno Mission’s Twitter account has been keeping up to date with all developments, including this sound bite of the exact moment the spacecraft entered the planet’s magnetic field:According to NASA’s website, “Juno will plunge into uncharted territory, entering orbit around the gas giant and passing closer than any spacecraft before…But first it must pass the trial of orbit insertion.”[Photo by Jason Koerner Photography]last_img read more

Saint Mary’s students gather to support victims of sexual violence

first_imgAs Saint Mary’s students walked around campus Wednesday they may have seen sporting violet t-shirts. On Monday, one fourth of the Saint Mary’s student body were handed t-shirts that read “One in Four” — representing the statistic that one in four college women have been or will be effected by sexual violence in their lifetime. On Wednesday, Belles Against Violence Office (BAVO) and Saint Mary’s Campus Ministry held a Belles for Healing Vigil in support of survivors of sexual violence. The prayer service featured reflections, music and prayer. As students gathered on Alumnae Green, the director of Campus Ministry, Regina Wilson, and BAVO student representatives invited students to stand, gave opening remarks and led the group in song. Wilson said it was important for the Saint Mary’s community to gather in support of those effected by sexual violence. “It’s an opportunity to come together and, since we’re a faith-based institution, to express our hope that there is hope for everyone and to pray in solidarity with all those who have suffered — and to stand together as a vision, as a community in prayer and solidarity,” she said.Wilson said the vigil allowed the Saint Mary‘s student body to lift up violence survivors in prayer.“Anytime people gather for prayer, I hope it gives comfort,” she said. “I hope it gives language to people’s feelings of confusion or their feelings of feeling alone. When we’re all here, we’re a sign that we are not alone, even when we feel a deep loneliness.”Between songs, students read the poem “Still I Rise” by Maya Angelou and passages of scripture on healing. Students were invited to write the names of survivors, messages of hope or their personal stories on slips of dissolvable paper and to place them in water. Students also lit candles and observed a moment of silence. Assistant director of campus ministry Liz Palmer said she hopes students walked away from the event with “a spirit of solidarity.” “Life is one of relationships and one where we should all support and be with one another,” Palmer said.Senior Courtney Driscoll, BAVO Student Advisory Committee (SAC) member and co-chair for the events and campaigns committee, explained BAVO is led primarily by Student Advisory Committees, each with two co-chairs who lead a group of 10 to 15 allies. “Liz Coulston recently joined BAVO as the new director. With my experience working for BAVO the last three years, we could not ask for a better director,” she said. “Liz is everything Saint Mary’s needs. She is punctual, creative and displays all-around leadership.”Driscoll said the vigil was organized in the hope of creating an inclusive space for the Saint Mary’s community to unite and promote a message of hope and healing for those affected by sexual violence.“I aim to create unique visual campaigns,” Driscoll said. “I believe through this — making students more aware and supporting them — will cultivate a safer environment and potentially lower sexual violence in our campus community.” Junior Katelyn Edwards, a committee ally entering her first year working for BAVO, said the event was an emotional and inspiring experience for her.“It supplied students with a safe space to let go and heal from whatever they have been affected by,” she said. “It allowed the community to support them in a silent and respectful way. I look forward to working with BAVO this next year and help plan the events to come.”Tags: BAVO, saint mary’s, sexual violencelast_img read more

Dodgers give their fans plenty to sing about in 14-0 win over San Diego Padres

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error PreviousLos Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu throws to home plate against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado follows through on a foul ball against the San Diego Padres during the fifth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsLos Angeles Dodgers Chase Utley acknowledges the crowd at his first at-bat after in the sixth inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp is greeted in the dugout after hitting a solo home run in the second inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu throws to the San Diego Padres during the fifth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers Enrique Hernandez, Chris Taylor and Chase Utley, from left, leave the dugout after beating the San Diego Padres 14-0, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Justin Turner (10) scores past San Diego Padres catcher Francisco Mejia after a single by Max Muncy during the fifth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Austin Barnes hits a two-run home run against the San Diego Padres during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)San Diego Padres starting pitcher Joey Lucchesi, right, is pulled from the game by manager Andy Green (14) during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Dodgers Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp drives in two runs with a single against the San Diego Padres during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado drives in a run with a single against the San Diego Padres during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu (99) scores past San Diego Padres catcher Francisco Mejia after a single from David Freese during the fourth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Austin Barnes (15) celebrates his two-run home run with teammate Matt Kemp during the fourth inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp points skyward as he reaches home plate after his solo home run against the San Diego Padres during the second inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp (27) celebrates his solo home run with teammate Yasiel Puig during the second inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado, center, celebrates his solo home run with teammate Matt Kemp, left, during the second inning of a baseball game against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu singles against the San Diego Padres during the second inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu throws to the San Diego Padres during the first inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado hits a solo home run against the San Diego Padres during the second inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)San Diego Padres starting pitcher Joey Lucchesi, left, stands on the mound after giving up a solo home run to Los Angeles Dodgers’ Manny Machado, back right, during the second inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Austin Barnes (15) is greeted at home by Matt Kemp (27) after hitting a two-run homer in the fourth inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Matt Kemp hits a single that scored two runs in the fourth inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu connects for a single in the fifth inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers’ Hyun-Jin Ryu scores past San Diego Padres catcher Francisco Mejia on a single by Max Muncy in the fifth inning, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers Chase Utley acknowledges the crowd at his first at-bat after in the sixth inning against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu throws to home plate against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)NextShow Caption1 of 25Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu throws to home plate against the San Diego Padres, Sunday, Sept. 23, 2018, at Dodger Stadium. (Photo by Michael Owen Baker)ExpandLOS ANGELES – The San Diego Padres were batting in the fifth inning when a familiar song arose from the right-field bleacher seats at Dodger Stadium. A group of fans was singing “Happy Birthday” to Matt Kemp, who turned 34 on Sunday. The song was interrupted by an infield single by Francisco Mejia, and Kemp pointed to his personal troubadours once the play ended. It was Fan Appreciation Day, after all.“They were turning up out there,” Kemp said.In the Dodgers’ final regular-season home game of 2018, there was plenty of appreciation to go around.Kemp went 3 for 4 with a home run. Pitcher Hyun-Jin Ryu threw six shutout innings and went 3 for 3 at the plate. Manny Machado hit his second home run in as many days from the cleanup hole, and the Dodgers walloped the Padres 14-0. The win allowed the Dodgers to take two of three games against the Padres (62-94), the fifth-place team in the National League West.“It’s a major league club,” Manager Dave Roberts said. “We came out and did what we needed to do. We have a big series in Arizona and I expect us to play well.”Ryu (6-3) got more help than he needed. He allowed four hits, did not walk a batter, and struck out eight in another masterful home performance. In two starts this week, the left-hander threw 13 innings without allowing a run.Ryu’s three hits equaled a career high set in his third major league game, back in 2013. More importantly, Ryu burnished his reputation as a ballast at Dodger Stadium. Only three Dodgers pitchers have recorded a lower home ERA in a single season than Ryu (1.15) since the franchise moved to Los Angeles. That might make him the favorite to start here in October if the Dodgers extend their season.“He’s certainly in the conversation,” Roberts said. “The game tells you. Performance and things have become clear the more games you play. He’s doing what he’s supposed to do.”The Dodgers trail the Atlanta Braves (88-68), their probable NL Division Series opponent, by one game in the race for home-field advantage. If the standings hold, Game 3 of the NLDS will be in Los Angeles. If the Dodgers host games 1 and 2, Roberts might be inclined to give one start to Ryu, and the other to Clayton Kershaw or Walker Buehler.Ryu is one of five pitchers who have an ERA of 2.00 or lower in at least 75 innings this season. For his part, Ryu said he is optimistic he can start a postseason game – something he hasn’t done since 2014.The Dodgers’ postseason bullpen picture is almost settled, but the final three innings gave Roberts something to consider.Right-hander Josh Fields, pitching consecutive games for the first time all month, threw a scoreless inning of relief. Left-hander Julio Urías threw two shutout innings, struck out four batters, and cracked a season-high 97 mph on the radar gun.Both pitchers have spent significant parts of 2018 recovering from injuries. Now they could be hard to leave off a postseason roster.Urías said 97 mph marked the fastest he’s thrown a baseball since undergoing surgery on his left shoulder in 2017.“I’m not really thinking about (the playoff roster),” Urías said through an interpreter. “The main thing is to stay healthy. If I’m healthy and the opportunity is there, I’m going to help in whatever way I can.”center_img Sign up for our Inside the Dodgers newsletter. Be the best Dodger fan you can be by getting daily intel on your favorite team. Subscribe here.The Dodgers (87-69) reduced their magic number to clinch a playoff berth to six with six games remaining. They will head to Phoenix for a three-game series beginning Monday, and might have a berth clinched by the time they leave Wednesday night for San Francisco.If the idea Sunday was to give the announced crowd of 50,250 a going-away gift, the Dodgers succeeded.Machado and Kemp hit solo home runs in the second inning off Padres starter Joey Lucchesi (8-9). Six runs scored in the fourth inning, including two on a home run by Austin Barnes. When the Dodgers took a 10-0 lead after five innings, Ryu’s margin of error swelled to the size of an ocean.By the seventh inning, all but one Dodgers starter had been replaced, allowing 19 players to participate in the romp. Ten collected hits.Chase Utley got a standing ovation in perhaps his final home game. Fourth-string catcher Rocky Gale got into his first major league game since October 2017. Max Muncy contributed four RBIs off the bench.last_img read more

Rock of Redemption

first_imgIn regards to the University of Pittsburgh, Hubbard Hollensworth and Harry Ray Wooten were the first student athletes enrolled at Pitt in 1911. However it would take until 1945, 34 years for any genuine notice to be given to them or any other African American athlete to attend the University.In 1944 Jimmy Joe Robinson, who eventually became Rev. Jimmy Joe Robinson was an outstanding running back from the small town of Connellsville, Pa. In 1945 he was awarded the first full football scholarship given to a Black athlete to attend and play at Pitt.Reverend Robinson reflects: “I was recruited by Clark Shaughnessy who came in to coach Pitt from Stanford. I was attending Connellsville High School. I was the first ‘recruited’ Black football player to play at the University of Pittsburgh. I can’t recall the impact that the first Black athletes admitted to Pitt might have had. I was 17 years old from a small town and I had no idea about any Black role models or heroes that might have attended the University of Pittsburgh before I did. I was from a small town. I had no idea about racism at Pitt or anywhere else. One incident stands out in my mind. I went out to dinner one day with a group of young White players that had been recruited.We went into a restaurant in Oakland. We sat down at our tables to order our meal. The waitress kept zipping by us. One of the young men inquired as to what was going on?The waitress responded, ‘My manager says that we can’t serve him,’ and pointed to me. This was in Oakland. So the group of players that I was with took the tables and turned them upside down and walked out angry. I was so naïve I continued to sit there wondering what was going on because I was taught as a youngster to know my place. There were formal Jim Crow laws in the South but there were unwritten laws in the North. Up to that point I had not experienced racism because I played football in high school with a lot of White players that had also made the Pitt squad.The team and the University were not the real problem it was Oakland. When we played other teams they were not teams from the South. Mostly all of the teams that we played were northern teams, Big Ten teams, etc. I was called a lot of names but it was nothing like what Jackie Robinson had to face when he integrated Major League Baseball two years [1947] after I received my football scholarship. Rev. Robinson also felt that his contribution has had a minimal impact the athletes of the present.What we endured and sacrificed for the most part has never been taught to the youth of today because most Black parents nowadays don’t really teach their kids about the struggles of the past.”As far as race being a factor in determining his grades Rev. Robinson had this to say; “As far as my grades being affected by my race, I really have no evidence of that.” Reverend Robinson went on to “congratulate Pitt and the African American Alumni Council [for hosting] The Forefront of a Century of Change celebration which will be held May 10 at the Petersen Events Center celebrating this historical event.” He also said that he would “participate and function in any role that the University asked of him.”Linda Wharton-Boyd, current president of the Pitt African American Alumni Council spoke with me from her office in the nation’s capital and said that “while traveling the country she had a vision to reconnect African American alumni to the University. Over the past few years I have been attempting to re-connect the University of Pittsburgh to its national African American alumni base. The sports alumnus represents just one of the segments that should be reconnected. The ultimate goal is to connect to, health care professionals and legal professionals as well.” She has also spearheaded a fundraising effort to raise five million dollars toward that effort of which close to 3 million dollars of that sum has been realized to date.“This is a monumental event for the University of Pittsburgh, embracing both the past and the future,” said University of Pittsburgh Athletic Director Steve Pedersen. “We are excited and honored to be welcoming back many Panther greats to this celebration.“The unprecedented event will commemorate the achievements of African-American student-athletes the past 100 years at the University of Pittsburgh. The celebration will be hosted by famed sports­caster Bob Costas.Costas, winner of 21 Emmy Awards, is one of the most recognized and accomplished figures in sports broadcasting. Costas—with NBC Sports since 1979—has covered nearly every major sport, but is most identified with the Olympics and baseball.Herb Douglas, president emeritus of the International Amateur Athletic Association, Inc. and a member of the University of Pittsburgh Board of Trustees, is serving as dinner chair.“The contribution of African-American student-athletes has been significant in the history of the University of Pittsburgh. This event is an evening to celebrate where we are and where we have come the last 100 years,” said Douglas. “There is, however, always room for improvement and we have to engage ourselves and strive for continued excellence from all our athletes” (from the University of Pittsburgh press release).(For event and ticket information call the University of Pittsburgh at 412-624-2939.) (Aubrey Bruce can be reached at [email protected]­courier.com or 412-583-6741.) The year was 1911. The industrial revolution was going strong in the industrial capital of the world. South of the Mason-Dixon line, Jim Crow laws were etched in stone. Pittsburgh was situated just above the North-South boundary. There were no official “James Crow” laws in place but the unacceptable law of racial exclusion was imprinted on the hearts of some from all points, north, south, east and west in America.last_img read more

Bump 2.0 Is Live, Adds Social Networks, Wireless Photo Transfer

first_imgTop Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting marshall kirkpatrick Bump, the innovative mobile app that lets you exchange contact information by bumping your phone together with someone else’s, just announced the availability of version 2.0 in the iTunes app store. The app is newly redesigned and has added some features that are simply awesome.The app uses your phone’s location and accelerometer features to send a signal to the Bump server whenever the app is running and your phone shakes. If Bump detects that two users have their phones jostled in the same place, at the same time, the service presumes those two people want to exchange contact info. It’s a great little system, and with the new version users can do even more. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#Product Reviews#web Users can now connect on Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn. They can even opt to see who they have connections in common with on those social networks. They can send photos from their phone’s photo albums to each other – how cool is that? The company says you can share calendar events between bumpers, too, but I haven’t figured out how to turn that on yet myself.Bump has already proven itself the easiest way to replace business cards – and actually save peoples’ info – between smartphone users. Now it’s even more powerful. The company opened its mobile data sharing API to the world in February, but there’s something to be said for advanced features right inside one single app.Bump 2.0 is an upgrade to the existing app, or can be downloaded via iTunes at this link. Bump 2.0 for Android will be released later this Summer, the company says. Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img read more

Miami (OH) Cornerback Marshall Taylor Transferring To Auburn, Eligible To Play This Fall

first_imgAuburn’s defensive backfield is getting some experience reinforcement, courtesy of the MAC. Marshall Taylor, a standout cornerback from Miami (OH), graduates this spring, and will be eligible to play right away for the Tigers in 2016. Taylor confirmed the commitment to Auburn to AL.com earlier this week:“I’m excited. Auburn’s been to two national championships in the last five years, not a lot of programs can say that… I just believe in what Coach (Gus) Mazlahn and the whole staff has going on. They have a really good team and I’m just trying to come in and be another piece to the puzzle.”Louisville held a slight edge for Taylor prior to his visit to Auburn. He has canceled his planned official visits to Michigan State and Florida.“I’m done,” he said. “I’m a Tiger. I’m done.” The Miami Student has more on Taylor’s career with the RedHawks.The 6-foot-2, 199-pound corner was a standout during his freshman year at Miami. He led all freshmen with 40 tackles and started five of the 11 games in which he played.He redshirted the next year, but started all 12 games of the 2014 season alongside current Green Bay Packers cornerback Quinten Rollins. He totaled 30 tackles, one interception and nine pass breakups.Last season, he played in 11 games, starting 10. He totaled 39 tackles and two interceptions, including a pick-six against Akron University. He had a collegiate career-high nine tackles against University of Wisconsin early in the season.Taylor’s Twitter account is private, but he’s already changed his profile picture and bio to reflect his new football home.marshall taylor auburn twitterTaylor is a Georgia native. He’ll have a chance to play in his home state for the first time as a college athlete on November 12, when the Tigers travel to face UGA.[AL.com]last_img read more

New 60s Scoop proposed class action lawsuit filed in Federal Court

first_imgThe Canadian PressTORONTO – Yet another proposed class action related to the so-called ’60s Scoop alleges the federal government was negligent in allowing Indigenous children to lose their cultural identities when they were taken from their homes and placed with non-Indigneous families.The new claim, filed in Federal Court this week, comes hard on the heels of a ruling that the government was liable for the harm suffered by on-reserve children in Ontario who were placed in non-Indigenous homes, and weeks after Ottawa announced it wanted to negotiate with all scoop victims across the country.According to the unproven statement of claim in the latest case, the proposed class comprises all Aboriginal children in Canada taken from their families and placed with non-aboriginals, who did not raise them “in accordance with the Aboriginal person’s customs, traditions and practices.”Among other things, the proposed suit alleges the federal government failed to prevent the children’s loss of cultural identity and to ensure they were made aware of their Aboriginal status, effectively depriving them of their treaty rights.“Canada was careless, reckless, wilfully blind, or deliberately accepting of, or was actively promoting, a policy of cultural assimilation,” the unproven statement of claim states.The representative plaintiff in the proposed lawsuit is Wendy Lee White, 44, of St. John’s, N.L. According to the statement of claim, White was born Pauline Numa in North West River, Labrador. She was taken from her Innu mother as a toddler before being adopted by non-Aboriginal parents just before her third birthday.The proposed suit, filed by lawyers for the firm Koskie Minsky in Toronto, seeks $500 million in damages for breach of fiduciary duty and negligence, and $100 million in punitive damages.The claim specifically excludes the on-reserve ’60s Scoop victims in Ontario who won last month after a bitterly fought years-long battle with the federal government.In that landmark ruling, Ontario Superior Court Justice Edward Belobaba ruled that Canada failed to take reasonable steps to prevent thousands of on-reserve children from losing their Indigenous heritage after they were placed with non-Indigenous families between 1965 and 1984. Damages, in that case have yet to be determined.Shortly before he was set to rule, Indigenous Affairs Minister Carolyn Bennett announced the government wanted to negotiate with all scoop victims, prompting an 11th-hour effort by federal lawyers _ which they later gave up _ to block Belobaba from releasing his decision.Bennett did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the new action, which is one of several others already filed years ago in provinces across the country. None of them has been certified.A meeting took place in Toronto with lawyers representing these suits to negotiate an out of court settlement.Koskie Minsky, which has been in a fight with another class-action firm over the 60s Scoop in western provinces, said the issue is a “Canadian problem” and the proposed Federal Court action is an attempt at getting quicker justice for victims.“There is a lot of procedural wrangling going on in the provincial cases,” said Scott Robinson, an associate with the law firm. “Class members have been left without access to justice for years in those cases _ until we got involved _ and we have tried to push them forward.”Morris Cooper, co-counsel in the successful Ontario action, said, however, that the plethora of Scoop suits highlights problems with Canada’s class-action rules that have led to ongoing fights between law firms, with millions of dollars in the form of legal fees at stake.“The nature of class-action litigation is it has become more analogous to staking mining claims than to actual progress of litigation,” Cooper said. “They are now coming in as the government says ‘we’d like to sit at the table to settle,’ purporting to represent people for their financial gain, not because they have some interest in protecting this disadvantaged group.”[email protected]last_img read more

BCs cities call for tax and rule changes to make housing more

first_imgVANCOUVER – Local politicians in British Columbia are calling for an overhaul of the housing system with significant tax and regulatory changes in order to bring skyrocketing real estate and rental prices back to a level local residents can afford.The Union of B.C. Municipalities has issued a report containing 32 recommendations for provincial and federal governments based on research and best practices from across Canada and around the world.Mayor Greg Moore of Port Coquitlam led the initiative for the union and said there are numerous reasons for the crisis in housing affordability that require a “multitude of solutions.”“The frustrating part that I see is many individuals and associations come out and say, ‘Well if we just did (housing) supply then everything would be solved.’ Well it’s much more sophisticated than that,” he said.“It has to look at the continuum of housing. Rental plays an extremely important part in that, but so does the demand management side of it.”Speculation by foreign and domestic investors has contributed to escalating real estate prices in Metro Vancouver, which has had a spillover effect on other B.C. communities and the rental market, he said.Using taxes as a tool along with stronger regulations at the municipal level is a “winning combination” to fix a complex issue, Moore said.To curb real estate speculation, the union wants the province to consider expanding its 15 per cent tax on foreign buyers in Metro Vancouver to include other areas, such as Victoria, where markets have been heating up. It also wants a review to determine if the 15 per cent rate is sufficient.The strategy also calls for more transparency around who owns property.University of B.C. geography professor David Ley, who contributed to the report, said the United Kingdom provides a good example where regulatory changes now require identifying the owner, preventing foreign investors from dodging taxes or laundering money.“We want a declaration of who the actual owner is,” Ley said, noting that property in B.C. can be owned by trusts or companies, hiding the person behind the purchase.Taxes are also being suggested to cut at the heart of the issue of profit-driven property flipping that has fuelled some B.C. markets, Ley said.The strategy includes a sellers tax on those who flip their homes within a few years of purchase to make a profit. It also calls for a more progressive tax system that hits luxury properties at a higher rate.“What we need to recognize here is that we’re in a very abnormal situation in Vancouver, abnormal in the scale of the affordability crisis, and it does require determined response from government,” Ley said, adding a similar strategy could be helpful in Toronto where affordability has reached similar crisis levels.While housing supply is a problem, Ley said it’s too simplistic to expect that increasing the overall supply will be a solution for the market because many units are being built every year.“The problem is that those are not affordable units and they’re not targeted to a local market or at least to the local wage structure, they’re targeted to an investment market,” Ley said.The strategy calls for tax breaks on developers building affordable units, and also giving municipalities power to create a progressive property tax system so that those types of developments are provided longer-term breaks.Moore said giving municipalities more power to zone areas for rental developments would ensure that new buildings remain as rental stock.The union has been in talks with the provincial government, and Moore said he hopes to see some of the recommendations included in the upcoming budget.The B.C. Green party released its housing strategy Wednesday that also focuses on speculation, the supply of affordable housing, financial relief for renters and improved transparency and data collection on ownership.“British Columbians have awaited action for far too long,” said Leader Andrew Weaver in a statement.“It is time to move past rhetoric and get to work delivering solutions.”Housing Minister Selina Robinson said in a statement that the province has already taken steps to address the housing crisis by improving supports for tenants and landlords, increasing housing for the most vulnerable, and cracking down on tax cheats.She said the government welcomes the strategy put forward by municipalities and the upcoming budget will include a plan that “looks at the big picture.”—Follow @Givetash on Twitterlast_img read more

Energy giant BP says 3Q earnings more than double

first_imgLONDON – Energy giant BP says third-quarter earnings more than doubled as it reaped the benefits of higher oil prices and streamlined operations.Underlying replacement cost profit jumped to $3.84 billion, the highest quarterly figure in five years, from $1.87 billion in the same quarter last year. The figure, which excludes one-time items and fluctuations in the value of inventories, is the industry’s preferred gauge of earnings.Net income rose 89 per cent to $3.35 billion.Oil companies are profiting after they cut costs and sold assets to adjust to an era of lower oil prices when crude dropped below $30 a barrel in January 2016. Brent crude averaged $75.16 a barrel for the most recent quarter — 44 per cent higher than a year earlier.last_img

Former Fort St John resident in custody following home invasion robbery in

first_imgPRINCE GEORGE, B.C. – A former Fort St. John resident is in custody and facing multiple charges following an early morning home invasion robbery of a senior citizen in Prince George.According to Prince George RCMP, at approximately 3:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 12, a lone male suspect entered the patio door of an apartment in the downtown area of Prince George. The apartment was occupied by an elderly female who was asleep in her bed at the time.Police say the suspect forced his way through the apartment, assaulting the victim in the process. A number of items including a small quantity of cash were taken when he fled a few minutes later. The suspect was located a short distance away and was taken into custody.37-year-old Phillip Christopher Wood, currently of Prince George, has been charged with the following Criminal Code offences:• Break & enter to commit robbery• Robbery• Assault causing bodily harm• Fail to comply with UndertakingRCMP say the victim was transported to hospital by paramedics for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.Wood is expected to appear in court at a later date.last_img read more