Justin CharlesWhen Avicii announced that Radio City Music Hall would be the host of his New York City tour stop this fall, many fans were understandably skeptical. Radio City is a legendary in the minds of New Yorkers, however it is most famous for hosting it’s annual Rockettes Christmas show and seated events like the NFL Draft and the MTV Video Music Awards. How would several thousand extremely excited young music fans react to being confined to a seat during a full set of electronic dance music?The answer is about exactly how you would expect. Organized chaos. Young adults decked out in neon filled the nearly 6,000 person capacity theater. Ushers heavily guarded the rows, and for the most part people danced wildly within the confine of their row. It was quite the sight to behold – thousands of being flailing the arms and jumping around, yet unable to move forwards or backwards. For all of the pre-show concerns, once Avicii’s massive stage set up was revealed to the crowd and the lights were dimmed, it seemed that no one seemed to mind the unorthodox seating arrangements.Before anything else, much credit must be given to Avicii and his visual production team. The stage set up was absolutely massive – earlier this year Avicii debuted a giant head that he would DJ atop of, while a massive array of lights project all sorts of images onto the stage. Words cannot accurately describe it – it truly is a sight to behold and is worth the ticket price alone. While Avicii gets a lot of flak from hardcore electronic fans whom see his productions as too main stream or safe – the producer does deserve a lot of credit for being forward thinking, pushing boundaries, and exceeding expectations with one of the better stage set ups this side of Amon Tobin.That is all not to say that Avicii musically disappointed. Far from it. His set weaved in between his own classics like ‘Seek Bromance’ , newer hits like ‘Sunshine’ which was co-produced by David Guetta, and some favorites from other artsits that are dominating the airwaves like Swedish House Mafia’s ‘Don’t You Worry Child’. He constantly teased some of the more memorable songs from his repertoire before changing the pace and dropping something else, keeping the capacity crowd on their feet. He even experimented with some progressive dubtep towards the end of his set, much to the delight of the crowd. By the time the familiar opening chords of Zombie Nation’s ‘Kernkraft 400′ blared through the house speakers, it seemed like the crowd had been given everything they expected and more. One word you could not use to describe the set would be safe.For all the confusion of seeing a DJ in a seated venue, it was really a remarkable feat for an electronic artist to accomplish. Avicii has seemingly lead a charge this year in trailblazing a path for electronic artists to fully enter the mainstream, for better or worse. He brought in the New Year to huge demand at Pier 94, an ‘outside the box’ idea for a venue. In March, he brought Madonna on stage with him at Ultra to huge controversy. Over the summer, he became the first EDM artist to take over the main venue at the Revel in Atlantic City. And now he has christened Radio City Music Hall, one of America’s premiere theaters, as an EDM-friendly venue. It can only be assumed that 2013 will be a similar year for the Swedish superstar as he continues his dominance over the EDM genre.
I don’t remember writing a single line in those first few weeks, while I attempted to calm the rising panic in the house.I became the IT fixer, cook, teacher, college advisor, nanny, bank negotiator, therapist, nurse, dental hygienist, hairdresser, and veterinary nurse, everything but, a writer. In an even shorter time, tempers frayed, and long-held annoyances and fears were voiced at decibels which left our neighbors blushing.My, ‘light-bulb’, moment came after revisiting the biscuit tin for the umpteenth time one morning. If Covid didn’t kill me then the stress might. I swallowed my pride, like 90% proof bourbon, gathered the family and announced I couldn’t do it all. You should have seen their faces! Complete disbelief.RELATED: 5 Growth Hacks To Help You Adapt And Thrive During Challenging TimesNow for the delegation of duties part. I set about the room asking each one of them what their preferred chore was and what hidden skill sets they possessed, pointing out, we didn’t need any twerking done in the house. I was pleasantly surprised and not a little relieved as they took it upon themselves to take responsibility for household chores, communication with the outside world, and scheduling.In late 2020, we were months into the lockdown and bracing ourselves for the second wave. Our perspective as a family had shifted—it’s no longer ‘poor me’, it’s now ‘what can I do to be useful?’.MORE: Writer Starts a Pandemic Pen Pal Project – Now 7,000 People Are Mailing Joy to Strangers With LettersFinally, I was writing more furiously and with more conviction and creativity than ever before. I looked at my family, one of the millions on the planet and thought, “wow, these people support me and I support them—and in turn, we support our community”. It was a ripple effect. I’m not alone. We are not alone.Writing under the pen name Pandora, Claire Pandora Gearty lives in Devon, England with her husband and two daughters. Her debut novel, The Balance-Pilgrim, selling in nine countries since 2015, was adapted for a screenplay, and her follow up novel, Pilgrim and the Geometry of Fear, was published in 2016. She’s working on the third in the trilogy, Pilgrim and the Fall of Kings.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreYou might quite naturally jump to the conclusion that COVID-19 has provided the opportunity through lockdowns and enforced isolation to create the perfect storm in which writers can work on their book.For some this may be true, however, for others—and I include myself among them—it has created a barrage of situations that have shrunk my writing time, instead of expanding it. On the face of it, my fingers should be running across the keyboard like a woman possessed. So, why aren’t they? I can sum it up in one word – family – and I use that all-encompassing word with a smile. Despite, the fact my writing time is now at least halved from before, I don’t begrudge it, because I actually feel the need to nurture, comfort, support, and teach those I love during this unique opportunity for my family to develop a deeper understanding of one another.Family, are like the pieces of a puzzle where the picture is continually changing and everyone is trying to fit themselves together as best they can. Under normal circumstances; pre-Covid; any family difficulties, sibling disagreements, home boundary issues, household chores and finances; could be easily avoided or postponed; by simply exiting the family unit on the pretext you’d be late for school, work, or friends. In my case, any unpleasantness could be shelved until after the first glass of red.Enter stage right; Covid 19. My daily routine was erased and I found myself sitting opposite a bewildered family at breakfast, who hadn’t said good morning to me in years, as I was out the door by 7am. If asked, pre-Covid, I would have said, ‘we’re a highly adaptable family, we’ve lived in a few countries, we have some experience of the world – bring it on! The reality landed a punch that made my knees wobble. I believe we pulled off the description, ‘plucky’, but that was about it.Before the week was out, our house had become the center of all operations, with each of us acting autonomously to what was in our individual best interests. My husband was determined to stockpile every can of beans within a thirty-mile radius. My eldest daughter (who has a young son and apartment in the next town) needed to know immediately what my babysitting schedule was looking like for the next year and that I was in her, ‘support bubble’(?), and my youngest daughter believed she was destined to become a spinster. I began planning how to sneak into the garage to write and leave them all to it.CHECK OUT: Walking Through the Doorway of Change – How to Thrive Through UncertaintyThe pandemic forced me to step-up and be emotionally present for my family. The first weeks were the hardest, with no routine and no idea of what I was expected to do, other than cruise the supermarkets for toilet paper. I was hit with what felt like collective shrapnel: upcoming exams, work interviews, medical exams and a speeding ticket – all of which had to be taken online using a webcam. I reminded myself, ‘you’ve relocated across continents with a 3-and-6-month-old – I can do this!’
Diana Jeanna de Waal may have been born in England but since she was a girl, she dreamed of life on stage in New York. As a kid, she would visit the Big Apple. “Our flight would land and we’d head straight to a theater.” She then added, “I didn’t know that Manhattan was bigger than Times Square.”De Waal is getting ready to play Diana, Princess of Wales in the new bio-musical Diana, but she’s had a rock ‘n’ roll career. She studied musical theater at the prestigious performing arts school LIPA—founded by Paul McCartney—and made her West End debut in Ben Elton’s Queen jukebox musical, We Will Rock You. Soon after, de Waal traveled across the Atlantic and made her Broadway debut as a replacement in American Idiot, playing Heather. After joining the Wicked tour in 2012, another big break came in Broadway’s Kinky Boots, where de Waal stepped in as Lauren in 2014.Now, de Waal is returning to her English roots, taking on the role of the people’s princess in Diana, a part she helped develop at Vassar College and La Jolla Playhouse. Recently, de Waal sat down with Paul Wontorek on Show People to talk about how Diana is a celebration of the late princess’s empowering legacy. Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 27:40Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -27:40 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedEnglishAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button. Star Files On visiting Broadway as a kid: “[My sister and I] were at a performing arts boarding school—just musical theater-obsessed, brutally obsessed—from across the pond. Our favorite holiday was coming to New York and seeing a bunch of Broadway shows. Sometimes the flight would land a little early, and we’d literally head straight to a theater and leave our suitcases in the lobby. [Broadway] has this exclusivity, like, ‘What’s going on in that place?’ It really has the ability to create this enviable excitement. We were just desperate for it.”On that time she met Prince Harry: “I was at [LIPA] and over the holidays, I would cater for this very fancy events company. They paid very well, but you had to be based in London. I would literally go stay at a hostel in London and wait for the calls. One of the events was catering for the Royals, and I was personally in charge of making sure that Harry’s glass was always topped up with champagne. He was very friendly, and he was the last person on the dance floor at the end of the night.” Jeanna de Waal Related Shows Jeanna de Waal performing in 2014 when she was in “Kinky Boots” (Photo: Gary Gershoff/Getty Images for Tony Awards Productions) On how Princess Diana was misunderstood: “She had no support system. She was 19 [when she married Prince Charles], and I think she was often painted as silly or stupid, but she wasn’t. She had very strong gut instincts about the Camilla affair before they were married, but how do you pause a roller coaster that’s on all the news channels? There’s memorabilia being printed, your whole family is set on you doing this—this could be the culmination of your life, everything you’ve dreamed of. But you have doubts. At 19, how do you stop that? She didn’t have the strength, and she went along with it. She was left in the mess of what happens when something snowballs out of control. And there you are, married and alone in a castle.”On what she’s learned from Princess Diana: “It was really up to her to find her strength. Everything that she became and is today was because she found that little nugget inside of herself to say, ‘I’m not going to let go.’ She molded that and grew to become this role model who is still very much in our zeitgeist today. [Playing Diana], it’s helpful to be older than her when all this happened, so I could reflect on how complicated and challenging that must have been, considering how badly I handled my 20s with far fewer challenging moments.” Here are a few highlights: from $49.00 Did you know Show People with Paul Wontorek is available as a podcast? Check it out on iTunes and Spotify. View Comments Jeanna de Waal
Public Assets Institute Vermont’s economy has been slowly recovering since the end of the recession. But its labor force has not. The number of Vermonters working or actively looking for work decreased more than 3 percent from 2009 to 2014 — the biggest drop in New England. This year through July, Vermont’s labor force has inched up by 0.2 percent.Job growth near the top Five years after the official end of the recession, Vermont showed the second-best job growth in New England. Non-farm payroll jobs reported by employers rose just over 4 percent from 2009 to 2014. The pace of Vermont’s job growth has slowed since the 1990s, as it has in many states. But in 2014 Massachusetts and Vermont were the only two New England states with more payroll jobs than before the recession.Economy at No. 3Since the recession, economic growth in Vermont ranked third among the New England states. After adjusting for inflation, Vermont’s gross state product grew 7.4 percent from 2009, when the recession officially ended, to 2014. After job growth, the next sign of recovery should be healthier incomes. But Vermont’s median household income declined in 2012 and 2013. Income data for 2014 will be released next month. Source: publicassets.org Montpelier(link is external)
The QuikTrip station on Shawnee Mission Parkway at Metcalf is now a pile of rubble.The QuikTrip station on Shawnee Mission Parkway just west of Metcalf has been turned into a pile of rubble. But QuikTrip has no plans to abandon the location for a gas station and convenience store.In fact, QuikTrip has acquired the car wash that adjoined the station to the west and north and plans to build a larger store on the expanded footprint.The new station will be able to serve 16 cars at one time for fuel and will have a 5,800 square foot store, more than 20 percent larger than the previous store. The new store and station are expected to open in April 2016, according to a company spokesperson.The site will be upgraded to a new generation of QuikTrip stores which offer a full service kitchen with some food prepared on the spot in addition to what it already offers on the shelf. To see what the new store will be like, customers only need to travel to Johnson Drive in Merriam and visit the QuikTrip next to IKEA.The larger store will be moved slightly to the west, closer to Foster, and will have a service entrance in the rear. It will lose one entrance from Shawnee Mission Parkway but have additional access points on side streets. Part of the old car wash land not needed for the expansion will be turned into a landscaped green space.
JCPRD offers discounted learning hub rates for qualifying familiesJohnson County Park & Recreation District is offering discounted rates for qualifying families to participate in its learning programs.In a recent announcement, the district reported that a portion of Johnson County’s new CARES Act funds will subsidize the district’s school-age remote learning and child care programs.“We’re grateful to the county for these funds, which will provide much-needed support to families throughout our community,” said Jennifer Anderson, manager of children’s services for the district.The funds are available to eligible families who live or work in Johnson County, so long as they meet at least one of the following requirements:Employed full timeAttending school full timeParticipating in a certified workforce training programLooking for full-time workLacking another safe option for child careThe district will award funds on a sliding scale based on income at 25%, 50%, 75% and 100% discounts. Discounted rates began Sept. 28. Applications are available on the district’s website.Mission Community Food Pantry to host grand opening Oct. 22The Mission Community Food Pantry, based out of Trinity Lutheran Church at 5601 W. 62nd Street, is hosting a grand opening on Oct. 22 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.Those who wish to participate should enter the parking lot from the Nall Avenue entrance. The pantry will also be open on Nov. 12 and Dec. 10.Shawnee approves $24 million in bonds for Phase 1 of Westbrooke GreenThe Shawnee City Council on Oct. 12 unanimously agreed to authorize the issuance of up to $24 million in industrial revenue bonds for Westbrooke Green, a mixed-use residential/commercial project on the northeast corner of 75th Street and Quivira Road. The bonds finance construction of Phase 1, which comprises plans for the apartments being built by Northpoint Development.Citing inquiries from nearby residents, Councilmembers Lindsey Constance and Jill Chalfie asked for the developers, Mission Peak Capital and Northpoint Development, to provide details on the status of the project as well as guidance for keeping apprised of progress.Brad Haymond with Northpoint Development said they are completing the permitting processes to begin grading and site work. He expects demolition of remaining buildings and grade work to begin “within the next month, but hopefully sooner than that.” Haymond said the development team can communicate with city staff and leaders on creating monthly updates.
February 1, 2016 Disciplinary Actions February 1, 2016 publication and further placed on Disciplinary Actions Disciplinary Actions Prepared by The Florida Bar’s Public Information and Bar Services Department ___________________________________________________________ The Florida Supreme Court in recent court orders disciplined 15 attorneys — permanently disbarring one attorney, revoking the license of one attorney, suspending eight attorneys, and publicly reprimanding six. Four attorneys received more than one form of discipline. Michelle Erin Berthiaume, 188 Cory St., Port Charlotte, suspended for two years, effective retroactive to December 5, 2011, following an October 26 court order. Further, Berthiaume is also publicly reprimanded. (Admitted to practice: 2000) Berthiaume displayed a lack of competence. She settled a claim for a client in a discrimination suit against his former employer, the Lee County School Board. Eight months later, Berthiaume filed a lawsuit on behalf of the same client against a Lee County School Board member and others. The court found that Berthiaume’s legal arguments were not meritorious nor did they form a good faith basis to modify the law. (Case No. SC13-2432) Renee Binns, 1306 S.E. 46th Lane, Suite 2, Cape Coral, suspended until further order, effective 30 days from a November 12 court order. (Admitted to practice: 1994) Binns was found in contempt for noncompliance and failure to respond to an official Bar inquiry regarding a case. (Case No. SC15-1734) John Richard Geiger, P.O. Box 860217, St. Augustine, suspended for 45 days effective 30 days from a November 5 court order. Further, Geiger is placed on probation for two years. (Admitted to practice: 1994) A Bar audit found that Geiger was not in substantial compliance with Bar rules governing trust account. At times during the audit period, Geiger improperly commingled his trust funds with personal funds. (Case No. SC15-1886) Joseph P. Hoffman, 1617 Hendry St., Suite 409, Ft. Myers, to be publicly reprimanded following a November 5 court order. The public reprimand shall also be published in the Res Gestae magazine for the Lee County Bar Association. (Admitted to practice: 1979) Hoffman behaved unprofessionally while representing a client in post-dissolution of marriage proceedings by making disparaging comments in pleadings directed toward the opposing party. Also, during the Bar’s investigation, Hoffman revealed that he charged nonrefundable fees for his legal services in all the cases he handled, without having written fee agreements with clients. He also deposited all fees into his operating account because he did not have a trust account. (Case No. SC15-1885) Julie Boggan Kaminsky, P.O. Box 3010, Auburn, Ala., suspended for 91 days, effective 30 days from an October 15 court order. (Admitted to practice: 1985) Kaminsky is also a member of the Alabama State Bar. This is a reciprocal discipline action based on an order from the Alabama State Bar and the Supreme Court of Alabama. Kaminsky admitted that she was inadvertently issued a check from the Social Security Administration in the amount of $5,097, which she failed to timely return. In another matter, Kaminsky failed to diligently pursue her client’s case by requesting two extensions of time to file an appeal brief, but failing to file the required brief. (Case No. SC15-1066) Richard Sam Lehman, 6018 S.W. 18th St., Suite C1, Boca Raton, to be publicly reprimanded following an October 22 court order. (Admitted to practice: 1969) Lehman commingled funds. While acting as ancillary personal representative for a deceased client, he withdrew funds from the client’s estate account and transferred them into his operating account. Lehman then used the funds to pay the estate expenses from his operating account, thus violating Bar rules. (Case No. SC15-1011) Scott Gregory Millard, 1211 Orange Ave., Suite 200, Winter Park, to be publicly reprimanded and further placed on probation for two years, following an October 29 court order. (Admitted to practice: 2014) Millard had been conditionally admitted to The Florida Bar and was placed on probation for one year during which time he was to be monitored by Florida Lawyers Assistance. Millard violated the terms of his contract with FLA by failing to meet in person with his monitor once a month during the first six months of the contract. (Case No. SC15-688) Christopher Michael Ochoa, 4237 Salisbury Road, Suite 407, Jacksonville, to be publicly reprimanded following an October 15 court order. (Admitted to practice: 2011) Ochoa hired NVA, a non-attorney third-party out of Virginia to do case processing. Although the company did the initial intake, Ochoa and other network attorneys provided supervision. Ochoa later learned that despite his supervision, NVA acted outside the scope of his authority. Instead of complying with his instructions, the company modified approved forms and randomly switched clients from one attorney to another without explanation. In addition, some clients complained that NVA was neglecting their cases and was not communicating appropriately. (Case No. SC15-1432) Garry Lee Potts, P.O. Box 17651, Clearwater, suspended until further order, effective 30 days from an October 15 court order. (Admitted to practice: 1988) Potts was found in contempt of court for failure to respond to an official Bar inquiry. He also failed to appear and failed to produce records related to a client as directed in a subpoena served upon him by The Florida Bar. (Case No. SC15-1571) John Rex Powell, 1714 Cape Coral Parkway E., Cape Coral, permanently disbarred effective retroactive to July 17, following an October 15 court order. (Admitted to practice: 2007) Powell was sentenced in federal court in the Southern District of Indianapolis, Ind., and sentenced to federal prison for 30 years for felonies including engaging in a child pornography enterprise and sexual exploitation of a minor. In addition, Powell failed to pay annual Florida Bar membership fees and failed to complete his basic skills continuing legal education credits within three years of his admission to the Bar. (Case No. SC15-1116) Andre Keith Sanders, P.O. Box 66465, St. Petersburg. The Supreme Court granted Sanders’ request for a disciplinary revocation, effective 30 days from a November 5 court order, with leave to seek readmission after five years. (Admitted to practice: 1991) Sanders had several matters pending including an order entered by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division, permanently and indefinitely terminating his admission to practice, based on findings that Sanders had previously practiced law in that jurisdiction while ineligible. (Case No. SC15-1806) Christopher LeGrande Scileppi, 100 N. Stone Ave., Suite 508, Tucson, Ariz., suspended for 60 days, effective 30 days from a November 5 court order. (Admitted to practice: 2000) Scileppi received a 60-day suspension along with six months’ probation in an Arizona court for his poor communication with a client and failure to comply with court obligations. In three separate matters, he failed to appear for court hearings. (Case No. SC15-855) Nadine Rhodes Smith, 13300 S. Cleveland Ave. Suite 406, Ft. Myers, suspended for 91 days following an October 15 court order. Further, Smith is required to pay the arrearages of her monthly monitoring fee before she can file a petition for reinstatement. (Admitted to practice: 1994) Smith was found in contempt for violating the terms of a June 17, 2013, report of minor misconduct. Smith was required in part to submit to an evaluation with Florida Lawyers Assistance within 30 days of the acceptance of the report. During the two-year contract period, Smith was required to remain alcohol- and drug-free. She tested positive for alcohol, failed to appear for two randomly scheduled tests, and failed to record her monthly meeting attendance. (Case No. SC15-1380) Clyde M. Taylor, Jr., 2303 N. Ponce de Leon Blvd., Suite L, St. Augustine, to be publicly reprimanded by publication and further placed on probation for six months, following a November 12 court order. (Admitted to practice: 1970) Taylor’s poor communication with a client resulted in the client filing unauthorized pro se documents in the case. (Case No. SC15-1887) Danielle E. Weber, 1807 Columbus Drive, Tampa, suspended for 91 days, effective immediately, following an October 29 court order. (Admitted to practice: 2006) Weber represented a client on criminal charges and fell asleep in court, causing the court to defer consideration of the case. She was denied access to visit clients at a jail because she was impaired due to alcohol and/or other substances. Weber failed to respond to multiple inquiries from The Florida Bar regarding her conduct. In addition, Weber pleaded no contest and was adjudicated guilty of a misdemeanor for driving under the influence. In representing another client, Weber appeared late to at least one hearing and failed to appear for another. (Case No. SC15-141) Court orders are not final until time expires to file a rehearing motion and, if filed, determined. The filing of such a motion does not alter the effective date of the discipline. Disbarred lawyers may not re-apply for admission for five years. They are required to go through an extensive process that rejects many who apply. It includes a rigorous background check and retaking the bar exam. Historically, fewer than 5 percent of disbarred lawyers seek readmission.
Jan 29, 2010H1N1 still active in some global regionsAlthough pandemic flu has declined in most of the Northern Hemisphere, transmission remains active in some regions of North Africa, eastern and southeastern Europe, and South and East Asia, the World Health Organization (WHO) reported today. Global H1N1 deaths now total at least 14,711. Novel H1N1 remains dominant in most nations, according to a separate WHO update, but in China 49% of flu isolates are the seasonal B strain. Other countries are detecting some seasonal flu, too.http://www.who.int/csr/don/2010_01_29/en/index.htmlJan 29 WHO weekly updateUS flu activity stayed low last weekH1N1 flu activity stayed at about the same low level last week as the week before, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said today. No states had widespread cases; five had regional activity. Five flu-related deaths in children were reported. The share of medical visits ascribed to flu-like illness was 1.7%, below the national baseline of 2.3%, but the fraction of deaths due to flu and pneumonia remained above the epidemic threshold. All but two tested viruses were novel H1N1.http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/?date=012910Jan 29 CDC weekly flu updateFlu down, vaccine availability up at collegesFlu activity at US colleges declined again after leveling off the previous week, the American College Health Association (ACHA) reported. The attack rate was 2.3 per 10,000 students. Though the number of vaccinated students was around 9%, the ACHA reports some encouraging signs. Some institutions are reporting vaccine uptake rates exceeding 25% to 30%. Vaccine availability has improved, with 86% of campuses reporting that they have it.http://www.acha.org/ILI_Project/ILI_Surveillance.cfm/?date=012910ACHA report for week ending Jan 22Vaccine from 1918, 1976 strains may fend off novel H1N1In an experiment to learn more about pre-existing immunity, researchers found that mice vaccinated with 1918-like and classical (from 1976) swine flu vaccines had complete protection against pandemic H1N1, according to a study in PLoS Pathogens. In contrast, vaccines based on more recent seasonal H1N1 strains afforded only partial protection. The authors say their findings underscore the importance of having people under age 35 receive the pandemic vaccine.http://www.plospathogens.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.ppat.1000745Jan 29 PLoS Pathog articleChina denies vaccine-miscarriage linkChina’s government denied a link between H1N1 vaccine and miscarriages after an official said “several” miscarriages occurred among 10,000 pregnant women who had been immunized, Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported today. The official added the miscarriages were coincidental and that most were seen in women in their first trimester. He emphasized that global experience so far shows the vaccine is safe and effective in pregnant women, who are at high risk for flu complications.http://www.mysinchew.com/node/34657Jan 29 AFP story
By CAROL A. CLARKLos Alamos Daily Postcaclark@ladailypost.comThe Regional Coalition of LANL Communities (RCLC) Board of Directors held its April meeting virtually Friday afternoon due to the state mandate for social distancing.Among the routine agenda items was a presentation by the RCLC’s contracted legal counsel Nancy Long. Long presented what was described as a final assessment of all audits and reports over previously uncovered financial mismanagement identified in fiscal years 2013-2018. Long went through a detailed review of available data including audits dating back to 2013 and the Adams + Crow report, commissioned by Los Alamos County. Long stated that the audits and reports demonstrated that the original financial problems had been born out of neglect and that the findings indicate no criminal activity or attempt to deceive was made by any of the parties.And while most of the questionable expenses have been properly accounted for by the RCLC, Long said that disagreements remain about how to categorize certain expenditures, which could mean up to $8,000 was improperly reimbursed. Those reimbursements in question went to former RCLC Executive Director Andrea Romero. In 2018, Romero paid back to Los Alamos County some $2,200 in reimbursed expenses deemed inappropriate at that time. Her contract with the RCLC ended in early 2018 and was not renewed. She now serves as a state representative for Santa Fe County Dist. 46.In the meeting, Los Alamos County Councilor and RCLC Treasurer David Izraelevitz asked Long for recommendations, and after board discussion, the RCLC board instructed Long to prepare a letter asking Romero to reimburse those questionable reimbursements. Responding to a request for comment from the Los Alamos Daily Post, Romero said early this morning in an email, “Until I see the letter from the RCLC, I won’t be able to comment.”During the discussion, Long also said the RCLC board has recently adopted strong financial procedures that should prevent future financial findings. Beginning in 2018, the RCLC Board has adopted the Office of State Auditor recommendations and new financial procedures, hired an independent accountant and legal counsel, conducted six years of Tier 4 procedures audits, and performed one full compliance audit.The independent auditor firm of Kubiak, Melton and Associates (KMA), reported the final results of the FY19 audit in a March 20, RCLC Board meeting. At that meeting, KMA informed the RCLC Board that KMA had submitted a “Full Financial Procedures” audit conducted for fiscal year 2019 to the New Mexico State Auditor and reported an unmodified or clean opinion. KMA said RCLC accounts are now considered accurate and in full compliance with state audit requirements.RCLC Chair Henry Roybal spoke with the Post Saturday about the final audit results.“It’s been a long road and I’m glad to see this chapter closed … it is our fiduciary responsibility and we’ve hired an attorney and independent auditors to ensure everything is in order and we are sending a letter to Ms. Romero to request that the funds be returned,” Roybal said. “I am really proud of our board and our Executive Director Eric Vasquez … they are all doing a great job and I’m honored with the confidence they have placed in me in electing me their chairman. With all this behind us we can now become the organization we were meant to be.”The next RCLC Board meeting is scheduled for May 15.
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