Governor Wolf Announces New Approvals for Low-interest Loans to Support Family Farming Operations in Seven Counties

first_img Economy,  Infrastructure,  Jobs That Pay,  Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced seven new low-interest loan approvals through the Commonwealth Financing Authority that will help small family farms make the necessary capital improvements to sustain and grow their livelihoods in Adams, Bedford, Berks, Columbia, Lancaster, Northumberland, and Snyder counties.“The survival of small family farms is not just essential to Pennsylvania’s economy, it’s critical to keeping rural Pennsylvania communities thriving,” said Governor Wolf. “By providing access to the capital necessary to acquire property, purchase equipment, and complete construction, we’re helping to keep our family farms competitive and successful.”The funding, approved through the First Industries program, will assist farmers with construction costs, help farmers start businesses, and enable them to acquire land to facilitate expansion. The First Industries program represents an important tool to support Pennsylvania’s agricultural sector and help individual farmers across the commonwealth.The following loans were approved:Adams CountyJoshua and Stacy Martin were approved for a $103,600, 10-year loan at a 2 percent fixed rate through the Adams County Economic Development Corporation to acquire a 10.05-acre farm in Straban Township and begin a business raising and selling boer goats and revive a family bakery business. The goat herd will start at 29 does and one buck and grow to 50 head, and the business may expand further onto an adjacent 50-acre property.Bedford CountyMatthew and Loretta Garman were approved for a $286,000, 12-year loan at a 3.5 percent fixed rate through the Southern Alleghenies Planning & Development Commission to construct a 22,500-square-foot cage-free layer barn on their 110-acre farm in Hopewell Township. The layer barn will house 10,000 hens and their organic eggs will be sold exclusively to Handsome Brook Farm.Berks CountyRay and Jenifer Hershey were approved for a $400,000, 15-year loan at a 2.5 percent rate with a 7-year reset through the Greater Berks Development Fund to acquire the 83.4-acre farm in Bethel Township that they currently lease. The Hersheys use the land to operate a dairy farm with more than 650 cows.Columbia CountyM&K Family Farms, LLC was approved for a $400,000, 15-year loan at a 3.5 percent fixed rate through the SEDA-Council of Governments to acquire 35 acres of farmland and construct a 55,890-square-foot layer barn in Catawissa Township. The layer barn will house 40,000 hens and their eggs are contracted to be sold to Dutchland Farms, LLC, for four years.Lancaster CountyClayton and Deanna Andrews were approved for a $400,000, 15-year loan at a 2.5 percent rate with a seven-year reset through the EDC Finance Corporation to purchase a 115.3-acre farm property on Beaver Valley Pike in West Lampeter Township with 81 tillable acres, four farm buildings, and a residence. The Andrews will utilize the land and farm buildings to expand their crop operation.Northumberland CountyRobert, Tomilee, and Callen Foresman were approved for a $400,000, 15-year loan at a 3.5 percent fixed rate through the SEDA-Council of Governments to construct two 25,116-square-foot broiler breeder houses on their farm in Delaware Township. The broiler breeder houses will allow the family to fulfil a 12-year contract with Pedigree Chicks to produce eggs.Snyder CountyJames and Megan Adams were approved for a $400,000, 12-year loan at a 3.5 percent fixed rate through the SEDA – Council of Governments to acquire a 56-acre property in Beaver Township where they will operate a hog farm. Additionally, the Adamses will purchase Energy Recyclers, LLC, which operates a methane digester on the property that generates electricity to be used on the farm and sold back to the grid.A full list of approved projects and guidelines for each CFA program can be found on the DCED website. For more information about DCED, visit dced.pa.gov. Governor Wolf Announces New Approvals for Low-interest Loans to Support Family Farming Operations in Seven Counties May 22, 2018center_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

Read More →

Dutch, German associations criticise pan-European pension proposal

first_imgPGGM, asset manager for Dutch healthcare pension fund PFZW, and Robeco recently threw their support behind the concept of a standard cross-border plan.According to the Dutch Pensions Federation, however, EIOPA’s plan would create an “uneven playing field” between EU-regulated providers and IORPs providing occupational pension schemes.It said the European Commission should focus instead on second-pillar pensions, which encourage “solidarity, risk-sharing and the participation of all participants in governance”.This, it said, has “clear advantages” over purely commercial products, which “place risk and the drive for accrual with the consumer”.The aba agreed, arguing that “we need more funded pensions in Europe but with the focus on occupational pensions”, as this pillar offered “good value for money”.It said existing systems should be “further developed and enhanced” before new systems were set up.The Dutch Pensions Federation expressed concerns that cross-border product providers would be unable to offer sufficient service locally.“It would be difficult for a Danish provider of a PEPP to advise a participant in Italy correctly about how to deal with his pension rights during a divorce, unless the provider has a local subsidiary,” it saidIt said EIOPA put too much emphasis on pension products’ accrual phase, when the payment phase was “crucial for the quality of the product”.The aba, meanwhile, highlighted the challenge of pinning down the term ‘pensions’, on which “an EU consensus has not yet been reached”.This will cause taxation problems, as “equal tax treatment for different quality requirements may not appear justifiable by all member states”.It added that an equal tax treatment for products of the same quality “already exists in Germany”. The Dutch Pensions Federation has criticised a proposal by the European Insurance and Occupational Pensions Authority (EIOPA) for a pan-European personal pensions product (PEPP). Responding to EIOPA’s consultation on the introduction of a standard, cross-border, third-pillar product, the industry organisation argued that demand for such plans would come only from the “happy few”, and fail to encourage workers to save more for pensions.Germany’s pension fund association (aba) was also critical of EIOPA’s proposal, describing it as “unconvincing” and arguing that many questions “remained unanswered”.EIOPA, at the European Commission’s request, is exploring the possibility of a standard third-pillar scheme.last_img read more

Read More →

GNF, Petronieves open public LNG station in Barcelona

first_imgImage courtesy of PetronievesSpanish LNG operator Gas Natural Fenosa opened the first public LNG-fueling station in Barcelona’s Zona Franca with the energy company Petronieves.GNF said it has invested about €800,000 ($909,000) in the project, that will serve the road transport industry and will also have compressed natural gas (CNG) fueling capabilities.The station is specifically designed to supply natural gas to large trucks and provide natural gas to about a hundred vehicles.Gad Natural Fenosa adds that there are 12 LNG stations in Catalunya currently, seven of which are owned by the company.Overall, there are more than 6,000 natural gas-fueled vehicles in Spain and 54 public LNG stations, half of which are owned by Gas Natural Fenosa.1 EUR = 1.13613 USDlast_img read more

Read More →

BMT Unveils New Hybrid Eco Ferry Design

first_imgBMT has launched a new hybrid ferry design believed that it could pave the way for a cleaner, more cost-efficient energy option for ferry operators.At 31 meters, the 149-passenger Eco Ferry has a top speed of 20 knots and offers an intelligent hybrid system delivering “smooth, silent and vibration-free power.”“Greener ferry systems have to be the future and we’re extremely excited to be launching this new hybrid design,” John Bonafoux, Managing Director at BMT said.“In our recent case study of an example river commute in New York, the Eco Ferry engines are completely off for 63% of the time. That’s a huge saving on fuel consumption and emissions, not to mention engine hours and maintenance,” Bonafoux explained.Working in collaboration with BAE Systems, the Eco Ferry uses the Hybrid-Drive system. When the upper end of power is needed, the diesel engines are there to support, keeping the batteries topped up at the same time. The vessel’s 160kWh energy storage system can also be further charged whilst alongside and by a solar array on the vessel roof, according to the company.“It’s an all-round, nicer experience for passengers. The Eco-ferry glides in and out of dock silently and smoke free, completely under electric power. No longer will there be noise and diesel fumes at the dock as passengers embark and disembark,” Bonafoux added.last_img read more

Read More →

Judges block ‘state guardian’ for every child law (Scotland)

first_imgDaily Mail 29 July 2016Family First Comment: Good decision! This was the same crazy suggestion that ex-Children’s Commissioner Cindy Kiro made about 10 years ago regarding all NZ children. Judges have blocked Nicola Sturgeon’s controversial law to appoint a named person for every child in Scotland, blasting the scheme as ‘totalitarian’.The flagship policy, introduced by the SNP administration at Holyrood, set out to appoint a single point of contact, such as a teacher or health visitor, to look out for the welfare of children under 18.Scottish courts had dismissed attempts by Christian campaigners to block the legislation but today five Supreme Court justices heard an appeal and ruled the measures were ‘incompatible’ with European human rights laws because of the requirement to share private family data.The court ruled that the current drafting of the legislation risked breaching important regulations protecting privacy and confidentiality and could result in disproportionate interference with the right to a family and private life.It is a humiliating blow for the SNP Government in Edinburgh but defiant Scottish ministers insist they will not scrap the scheme despite today’s ruling by the Supreme Court in London – the UK’s highest court.READ MORE: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3712649/Judges-block-Nicola-Sturgeon-s-totalitarian-law-appoint-named-person-child-Scotland.html    Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

Read More →

Fifa president Sepp Blatter under investigation

first_img Share Blatter is bidding for a fourth presidential term at Fifa Fifa has opened ethics proceedings against its president, Sepp Blatter.The action follows a charge by Mohamed Bin Hammam, his rival in next week’s presidency election, that Blatter knew about alleged cash payments.Bin Hammam and vice-president Jack Warner will also be at Sunday’s hearing to answer charges of bribery.Blatter issued a statement saying: “I cannot comment on the proceedings that have been opened against me. The facts will speak for themselves.”The ethics committee are bound by their rules to investigate any complaint by an executive committee member under article 16 of the ethics code.Bin Hammam and Warner face allegations from executive committee member Chuck Blazer that they offered bribes at a meeting of the Caribbean Football Union on 10 and 11 May.A file of evidence claims bundles of cash of up to $40,000 were handed over to members of the CFU at the meeting in Trinidad.In turn, Bin Hammam is effectively claiming Blatter was aware of some wrongdoing but did not report it, in itself a breach of the code.The committee, chaired by Namibian judge Petrus Damaseb, will also be under pressure to decide whether Blatter will face any charges or not.The move to place Blatter, one of the most powerful men in football, under investigtion is the latest twist in an increasingly bitter fight for the presidency of the sport’s global governing body.And it also follows weeks of damaging headlines and allegations in the wake of the vote for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.BBC sports editor David Bond said: “Fifa is now an organisation completely at war. They cannot possibly continue in this way and many people will say they should suspend the presidential election, which takes place next Wednesday.“Under Fifa’s ethics code, they are duty bound, if a member of the executive committee makes a complaint to the ethics committee, to then investigate it.“So, it may be that the allegations against Blatter don’t come to much, and the allegations against Bin Hammam and Warner could be far more serious. Ultimately it seems the evidence against Blatter is only Bin Hammam’s word against his.“It is very difficult to predict exactly what will happen next, but it’s hard to see this as anything other than a watershed moment for Fifa.“It feels like at last the dam is breaking around them. It is a bit like the scene at the end of Reservoir Dogs when everyone has a gun pointed at each other’s heads.”Blatter has been president of Fifa since 1998. Michel Platini, the president of European football’s governing body, Uefa, who is tipped to run for the Fifa presidency in four years’ time, described the latest development as “a very interesting moment”.He said there would only be a postponement of Wednesday’s presidential elections if three-quarters of Fifa’s general assembly agreed.But sports minister Hugh Robertson was in no doubt that the election should be postponed.“The Fifa presidential election campaign has descended into a farce,” he said. “With both of the candidates having allegations of corruption aimed at them the election should be suspended.”The International Olympic Committee (IOC) brought in tough new rules after the Salt Lake City bribery scandal in 1999 and Robertson said Fifa should follow suit.He added: “Sports governing bodies have to be transparent and accountable and change has to happen for the good of world football.“Fifa needs to urgently reform in the way that the IOC did after Salt Lake City. I don’t see how you can have an election process when both the candidates are accused of corruption.“The sensible thing for Fifa to do now would be to suspend the election and have a robust and independent investigation.”Platini, whose organisation have thrown their weight behind Blatter’s bid for re-election, described himself as “incorruptible”.“You know the people who are corrupt, they know who can be corruptible,” he said. “They know I am incorruptible.”He also argued that corruption was an issue not only in football, but the whole of society. “Football is the most beautiful and popular game in the world and we have to resolve these problems,” he said.“[But] it is not only a fight in football. Football is a mirror for the society and what happens in football can arrive in every part of the society.”Meanwhile, the FA is due to send to Fifa the report they commissioned by barrister James Dingemans QC into claims by their ex-chairman, Lord Triesman, that Warner and three other executive committee members made improper requests during England’s 2018 World Cup bid.It is understood that only the claims against Warner have been corroborated by witnesses.The claim that Warner asked for financial help to build an education centre has been backed up by Premier League chairman Sir Dave Richards, while Dingemans’ file also includes an email from Warner to Triesman asking the FA to pay for Haiti’s World Cup TV rights.BBC Sports NewsSports Fifa president Sepp Blatter under investigation by: – May 27, 2011 30 Views   no discussions Tweetcenter_img Sharing is caring! Share Sharelast_img read more

Read More →

Cadiz City’s No. 3 most wanted person nabbed

first_imgBacolod City – He was listed as the No. 3 most wanted person in thepolice station of Cadiz City, Negros Occidental. Police officers served the warrantissued by Judge Gwendolyn Jimenea of the Regional Trial Court Branch 60 inCadiz City dated Sept. 12, 2017.    The 20-year-old Michael Casalda wasarrested in his residence in Barangay Caduha-an, Cadiz City, a police reportshowed. Casalda – who faces a rape charge –was nabbed on the strength of an arrest warrant around 11:15 a.m. on Nov. 3,the report added.    center_img The suspect was detained in the lockupfacility of the Cadiz City police station. No bail bond was recommended forCasalda’s temporary liberty./PNlast_img read more

Read More →

Oton local nabbed over illegal gambling rap

first_imgPico’s apprehension was staged on the strength of an arrest warrant issued by Judge Rasty Ann Eapinosa- Borja of the Municipal Trial Court. Pico was brought to the Oton police station. Police identified him as 32-year-old Joey Pico, a resident of the village. ILOILO City – A man facing an illegal gambling charge was nabbed in Barangay Cagbang, Oton, Iloilo. The court recommended a P30,000 bail bond for the suspect’s temporary liberty./PNlast_img

Read More →

USC prepares for two games over break

first_imgAfter a thrilling 2-point victory against Texas A&M in College Station last Friday, USC men’s basketball has two opportunities at home to extend its undefeated start to the season this Thanksgiving week.On Tuesday night, the Trojans challenge the New Orleans Privateers at the Galen Center. The Privateers (1-2) are a high volume 3-point shooting team. They make 6.7 3s-per-game at a clip of 36.4 percent. The Privateers are also proficient defenders, averaging 9.3 steals per game and 3.7 blocks per game. However, although they have forced 17 turnovers per game  they have also committed 16 per game this season. USC will have to start and finish the game composed, dictating the pace of the game and overcoming the Privateers’ pressure. “Anytime you have offensive talent, your (opponent) is dangerous,” Enfield said. “We need to play the same type of defense we have been — holding teams to under 40 percent from the field and rebounding.”In the Privateers’ first game versus a power conference team, they were blown out at Oklahoma State, 117-72. They allowed an astonishing 68 first half points, and OSU scored 31 points off of turnovers. If the Trojans can showcase their transition offense on Tuesday night, they can experience their first run-away game. However, three close games in a row has shown that nothing can be taken for granted with this young team. USC’s biggest test of the young season is on Friday night versus Southern Methodist. The Mustangs have won three of four to start the year, including a win versus Pitt. However, SMU followed that win with a deflating 22 point loss to Michigan. Michigan hit 13 3-point shots against SMU at a rate of 41 percent — an incredible performance. On offense on Friday night, look for USC to try to emulate Michigan’s success by scoring prolifically from beyond the arc. The Trojans will also have to shut down 6”7’, 235-pound  forward Semi Ojeleye, a Duke transfer, who is averaging 20 points, nine rebounds and four assists in his first several games as a Mustang. Ojeleye has an NBA-ready body and skills to go along with his physicality. He can hit an open three, rarely turns the ball over and can rebound especially well for a wingman. He will definitely cause matchup problems for the Trojans, who have many long wingmen but no one who can match his physicality. SMU’s fatal flaw is its lack of size. The Mustangs are deep at guard and small forward, but only Australian freshman Harry Froling is taller than Ojeleye. Froling has played fewer than 15 minutes per game this year, averaging only 3 points. USC’s big men will have to overcome their early season woes to give the Trojans a victory on Friday. Redshirt senior forward Charles Buggs will have to score off the bench and freshman forward Nick Rakocevic cannot continue to put himself in early foul trouble. Metu will have to score more efficiently, and Boatwright will have to quickly shake off his offseason rust.Speed and perimeter play are the hallmarks of USC’s game, but on Friday night, SMU might be superior in length and athleticism. USC must put forth a great effort on the boards, at the line and from behind the arc this week to remain undefeated.Friday’s win against a power conference team in Texas A&M on the road was an impressive testament to the Trojan’s talent. No doubt, the victory will help the team’s resume come March. “To get a win like that means a lot to our program early in the season,” head coach Andy Enfield said. “We hope that win means something down the road, but we have to get a lot better.”The win certainly was not pretty, and USC must continue to improve to win both of this week’s match-ups. Sophomore forward Chimeze Metu identifies slow starts as a problem. “Once we get deeper into the season, teams are going to be a lot better, and they’re going to keep the lead,” Metu said. “We need to be focused at the start of games and stay focused.”So far this season, the Trojan offense has started slow in every game and then sputtered at the beginning of each second half. The team shot a meager 35.8 percent on Friday and an abysmal 5-26 from 3-point range, even with sophomore forward Bennie Boatwright making his season debut. USC is shooting 25 percent from three this season, a 13 percent drop from last year. The Trojans hope this number is low because of a limited three game sample. Another takeaway from last Friday’s win was Melton’s clutch performance. The freshman has helped his team immediately.“It means a lot that the coaches trust me to contribute right away, to close off games and to play freely,” Melton said. He hopes playing freely will enable the offense to come alive this week.Tuesday night’s game tips off at 6 p.m., while Friday’s contest starts at 4 p.m.last_img read more

Read More →

Colossal Clippers fail sets up franchise-defining Game 7 in Houston

first_imgIn one sense, you can excuse them. How would the Clippers possibly know what it takes to win a second-round playoff series?In every other sense, you can’t.Among them, they have played millions of basketball games in their lives. All of those games had a buzzer. Somehow they forgot, Thursday night, to play until they heard it.• View: Clippers fourth meltdown in photos Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error They were up 19 on Chris Paul’s layup with 2:35 left in the third quarter, and they lost the rest of the game 49-18, the fourth quarter 40-15, and the game 119-107. They have a Game 7 on Sunday in Houston when they thought they might be flying to Oakland. If they lose that one, they might want to reconsider the round trip.“We let our guard down,” DeAndre Jordan said later. “We couldn’t get stops. It just seemed like we were taking the ball out of our basket a lot. We got rushed offensively, got stagnant, and they just kept hitting shots.”The mind-blower, beyond everything else, was the fact that the Rockets did all this with James Harden safely bundled on the bench in his red-and-gold warmups.Harden had sung a brilliant aria in the second quarter, gunning Houston back into the game, but he has been ill during this series, and he missed 15 of 20 field goals here. Maybe the Clippers were waiting for him to come back, so they could have a focal point for their defense. As it was, they were bombarded by incoming fire from everywhere, right down to the last shot, when Jason “Jet” Terry sank a 3-pointer and just stood there in the middle of Staples, forearm extended, in case anybody wanted a photo.“It looked like we were trying to run out the clock,” coach Doc Rivers said of the Clippers, who will have to win a second consecutive Game 7 to keep playing. “With each miss, the pressure mounted. I thought we got very tentative offensively. But when you give 40 points in a quarter, forget the offense. When you give up 40 points, you’ve stopped playing.”McHale thought the ship began to turn right-side-up when Terence Jones swished a 3-pointer near the end of the third. But when J.J. Redick did the same with 8:17 left, the Clippers still led 97-85. Paul then made it 102-94 with 6:47 left. The next Clippers point came with 1:01 left. By then Houston was leading by 12. That’s an 18-0 run without the Most Valuable Player runner-up.“I kept thinking I should put him back in, but that group we had was playing so well,” McHale said. “I just thought I thought I’d let them go.”That’s an ex-player talking, a guy who has felt the soul of a game from floor level, in Boston Garden with Lawrence O’Brien Trophies in the hall. This is not a video-room-bred technocrat who sticks to the battle plan even when the battle rages off script.“Now James got plenty of rest,” McHale said, smiling. “He’ll be ready to rock and roll on Sunday.”The Clippers, who were leading this series 3-1 and who got those three victories by a total of 16, 33 and 25 points, have to remember how they played when they got too close to the fire Thursday. Paul and Blake Griffin were a formidable tag team for three quarters, combining for 50 points and 20 for 27 shooting. But Griffin, driving into multiple Rockets at the end, had a couple of short shots trickle off the rim. That has happened before, and if fatigue were the reason, it would be understandable. Griffin was a dervish throughout the game, taking a hard fall when Howard shouldered him in the face, sprinting downcourt when the Clippers were 16 and sliding back-first into the basket support to stop a shot.When problems arose, everyone else froze. If any Clipper bears the most pressure Sunday it is Crawford, who was 4 for 13 overall and 1 for 4 from 3-point land. In the Clippers’ three wins in this series, he is 6 for 18 from 3. In the losses he is 3 for 17. Crawford, Redick and Matt Barnes were a combined 12 for 38. Not to overstate it, but the barometer tells no tales.And Howard, who delighted the Staples crowd with every clanked foul shot, wound up with 21 rebounds and 20 points.“This game was amazing,” he said. “I mean, I just stopped looking at the clock and the score. We all gave ourselves up for the team. We played big minutes, we played hard, we played together and we never stopped believing. Our faith was tested. Instead of us folding, we just kept it together.”“We didn’t finish,” Paul said. “When we got that lead, we got comfortable.”They aren’t anymore.Before the game, Rivers talked how there would be a time in the series when the Clippers would have to win a game in which Houston played great. He had no idea they couldn’t stand up to one great quarter.center_img Salute the Houston Rockets, a team with more depth and versatility and bounceability than anyone suspected. They were down 19 points in the third quarter, about to be swept away in a tidal wave of L.A. woo-hoo, as the Clippers looked destined to win this series in Game 6 and roll into the first conference final in their history.“We fought,” said Kevin McHale, the former All-Pro forward and now the Houston coach. “The guys played their tails off. They finally started playing defensively, they got stops, they ran. They started playing downhill.”And the Clippers fell off the ski jump hill like the poor guy on the intro to Wide World of Sports.• Bonsignore: Clippers reach new low with Game 6 meltdownThey shot 4 for 22 in the fourth quarter. They watched Houston shoot 12 for 19. They got outrebounded 21-5, giving up five to Dwight Howard alone. They watched Corey Brewer pour in 15 points and Josh Smith 14. last_img read more

Read More →