Passed! Minimum Wage Set at US$6/day

first_imgAt long last, the House of Representatives finally concurred with the Liberian Senate Tuesday in setting a “minimum wage” for Liberian workers.The House agreed to set the minimum wage for skilled workers at US$6.00 per day, while unskilled and domestic workers are subject to US$4.00 per day.Said legislation covers all sectors of the economy, including government and concessionaires.The latest decision is based on recommendations from the Joint Committees on Labour, Ways, Means and Finance and Judiciary which reported to plenary after working on the proposed legislation.Both houses last summer passed the bill with conflicting versions, forcing both chambers to constitute a Conference Committee to further discuss and agree on a single position.According to the Constitution, both houses must agree under the same accord before sending said legislation to the President for signature.In Representative Acarous M. Gray’s motion, plenary concurred with the Senate while taking into consideration the protection of employers and employees under this proposed legislation.However, Gray’s fellow Montserrado County representative, Edwin Snowe, filed a motion for reconsideration and expected to reopen the debate soon.In the midst of Snowe’s motion, plenary agreed that a Minimum Wage Board is constituted after two years in order to study the economic variables of the nation and make increments in wages when necessary.The bill is now on its way to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for signature and onward submission to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to be printed into handbills.Passage of the bill by the Legislature comes as a relief to many industrial workers and organizations, including the Liberia Labor Congress, a body of labor advocates.The group has over the years, advocate for said legislation, staging several protests on the grounds of the Capitol Building and prevailing upon their lawmakers to act in their best interest.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Will AOL Use Seed to Fuel Its Hyperlocal News Site?

first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Tags:#AOL#crowdsourcing#news#web Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai…center_img AOL is continuing with its push to create content on a massive local scale, according to a story by the Silicon Valley Insider. The story says that AOL is looking to “expand Patch, its network of local news blogs, from 30 sites to ‘hundreds’, by the end of 2010.”AOL recently announced a similar 0-to-60 sort of initiative with its attempt to cover every single band at this year’s South By Southwest festival with its content distribution project Seed.The article quotes an internal communication, saying that AOL is looking “to be leaders in one of the most promising ‘white spaces’ on the Internet” as well as “in sourcing, creating, producing and delivering high quality content”. Patch is a “hyperlocal” website that offers news, photos and videos, discussions and information about local businesses. It is run by “professional editors, writers, photographers and videographers who live in or near the communities [they] serve”. As such, Patch seems like a perfect candidate for the type of service offered by another arm of AOL, crowdsourced content provider Seed.While the article declares the intention to go from 30 sites to hundreds “quite the ambitious goal,” we wonder if having a system like Seed already in place wouldn’t make an otherwise potentially daunting task a bit easier. Actually, the SXSW coverage seems like a good testing ground for doing the same sort of coverage in hundreds of locations throughout the country.As Paid Content wrote last month, Saul Hansell left the New York Times’ Bits Blog in December to join Seed, with the purpose of “leveraging Seed across all of AOL’s platforms”.Looking at the site, it would seem that the only issue in growing from 30 to hundreds would be general scalability, as each location is identical, but with different content. With an army of content providers at your fingertips, it would seem that the expansion is the obvious next step more than anything else. mike melanson Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…last_img read more

Getting Into Hot Water — Part 2

first_imgIn my last blog, I discussed the basics of our domestic hot water (DHW) load, and looked briefly at adding a solar hot water system to satisfy most of that load. What I decided to do first was to try a heat-pump water heater (HPWH), partly because it was a much simpler and less costly installation, and partly because I was just curious to see how well one would work.Since I already had the 85-gallon Marathon electric water heater, I didn’t need additional storage, so I looked at the add-on products available and chose the Geyser, which is made in Maine by Nyle Systems. It costs in the range of $1,000, plus installation. Monitoring performance with water meters and a Kill-a-Watt meterSince this is a new technology for me, I wanted to understand how well it was working. I installed a DLJ75 water meter on the cold water feed line to the water heater, before it splits to the thermostatic mixing valve, so I would be able to measure how much DHW we were using. This is a simple, time-tested mechanical water meter. We’re installing a couple of others right now that have a pulse output that can be counted and totaled, so they won’t need to be read by a human daily to get a sense of the usage patterns.The Geyser is a 120-volt machine that simply plugs into an outlet, so I’m tracking its electrical usage with a Kill-A-Watt meter. I also have been using the two exterior channels of my Hobo logger to measure cold water inlet and DHW outlet temperatures. With flow and temperature differential I can calculate the energy demand of the DHW system, and with the kWh I can calculate the system efficiency at satisfying that energy. As a HPWH extracts heat from the air, it also cools it, which means that it acts as a dehumidifier as well, with one key difference. Conventional dehumidifiers cool the air, condense moisture out, and then reheat the dehumidified air, so they remove moisture and add heat to the air. Since warming the air lowers its relative humidity, the twin effects of moisture removal and heat addition are exactly what we want — lower relative humidity means lower moisture absorption by materials in the space being dehumidified, and therefore less mold.A HPWH removes moisture from the air, but cools it rather than heats it, because the heat goes into the DHW, so it isn’t as effective a dehumidifier. I put a Hobo four-channel data logger in place to look at the effects of the HPWH on the basement environment.The normal Geyser installation uses a clever tube-in-tube fitting that is inserted in the drain fitting on a conventional electric water heater (or other water heater tank). This allows the Geyser to both extract water to be heated, and return heated water through the same port on the water heater. RELATED ARTICLES Heat-Pump Water Heaters Come of AgeAll About Water Heaters An add-on heat-pump water heaterThe Geyser is a small cube (about 1 1/2 feet on a side) which can sit on the floor or on a platform adjacent to the water heater tank. The way it (and other HPWHs) operates is that it removes heat from the air in the space in which it is located and transfers that heat to the water.The Geyser has a compressor to operate the refrigeration cycle to take the heat out of the air (like an air conditioner or dehumidifier), a fan to move air across its refrigerant coil, and a pump to circulate water to and from the adjacent storage tank. It connects to the tank at or near the bottom, so it heats the coldest water, maximizing the efficiency of the heat pump. Image 2 (below) shows a the interior of the Geyser, including its key components. BLOGS BY MARC ROSENBAUM Getting into Hot Water — Part 1Getting into Hot Water — Part 3Getting into Hot Water — Part 4Basement Insulation — Part 1Basement Insulation — Part 2Seasonal Changes in Electrical Loads [Editor’s note: This series will continue; stay tuned for “Getting into Hot Water — Part 3.”]center_img Handling the condensateLike dehumidifiers, HPWHs remove moisture from the air and therefore generate liquid water as that water vapor condenses on the coil. The Geyser has a drain pan to catch this condensate and a tap that can be connected to a plumbing trap or a condensate pump. Mine is simply draining to a 5-gallon pail.Interestingly enough, in the middle of the summer, when the basement temperature and relative humidity was highest, there was a puddle on the concrete below the unit, which went away as we left the peak cooling season behind. I tried to determine the issue and the folks at Nyle were very helpful, but in the end I think that somehow there is a leak in the drain pan, probably at the corners, that only is operative when the rate of condensate is high. Alternatively, there may be condensation on a component that is not above the drain pan. I may need to wait to next summer to resolve this one.I have been pleased that the machine is fairly quiet, and so far, completely reliable. Add-on or integrated unit?If I had decided at the beginning that I wanted to install a HPWH, I probably would have selected an integrated unit, that has the heat pump built-in on top of a storage tank. These are made by Stiebel Eltron, GE, A.O. Smith, and Hubbell, amongst others.There is an excellent report on the field performance of HPWHs authored by Steven Winter Associates.In the next post, I will comment on other aspects of the DHW installation; then in a subsequent post I’ll share some data on the performance of the HPWH and its effect on the temperature and moisture level of the basement air. Removing the Marathon’s lower heating elementIn the case of the Marathon, the drain port location precludes this. I chose to do something a bit unconventional — I removed the lower electric heating element (residential electric water heaters have an upper element and a lower one, and only one operates at a time) and used an adapter to connect the heated water returning from the Geyser to this location. The water to be heated comes from the drain connection.This approach loses the functionality of having the lower element as back-up to the HPWH — only the top element is usable. The Geyser uses the existing line voltage thermostat on the water heater to tell it when to operate. In a typical electric water heater, the controls first ensure that the top thermostat, that controls the upper element, is satisfied, then the lower thermostat and the lower element, which properly prioritizes the water at the top of the tank, which is drawn off first.In my set-up, once the upper thermostat is satisfied, the power is switched to the lower thermostat, which can call for the Geyser to operate if needed. I’ve set the upper thermostat to about 90°F, and the lower thermostat to 120°F, which forces the heat pump to do all of the water heating.I installed the Geyser on July 5, 2011, and we haven’t used any power for electric resistance heating since then; all water heating has been done by the Geyser. Note that HPWHs are slow heaters relative to typical water heaters. The Geyser’s output is under 2 kW, whereas an electric water heater is typically 4.5 kW, and gas or oil heaters are much more. This is why the tank size is large for a HPWH. We’ve had a house full of guests a number of times this summer and fall, and no problem with enough DHW. Marc Rosenbaum is director of engineering at South Mountain Company on the island of Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts. He writes a blog called Thriving on Low Carbon.last_img read more

DMA to Abolish Special Shipping Requirements in Denmark

first_imgzoom Out of the 33 special requirements that Denmark has for ships flying the Danish flag, four have been abolished and the remaining requirements will be revised or abolished, according to the Danish Maritime Authority (DMA).A benchmark analysis, carried out by financial advisory firm Deloitte on the basis of a decision by the Danish Government’s Implementation Committee, examined to what extent Denmark gold-plates five international conventions or has other additional special requirements compared to Germany, Malta, Norway, Singapore and the United Kingdom.The analysis has identified 33 special requirements, which include, inter alia, requirements related to the construction of ships, inspections, certification and reporting obligations.The Implementation Committee has asked the Danish Maritime Authority to align the requirements with those of the neighbouring countries.“We have been alleviating burdens for a long time and we have already abolished four of the 33 special requirements identified in the analysis. Now, with this analysis in hand, we will take initiatives to make it even more attractive to fly the Danish flag,” Andreas Nordseth, Director General from the Danish Maritime Authority, said.As of 1 January 2017, four of the 33 special requirements have been abolished, including a requirement to report information on the signing on and signing off. In the coming months, additional revisions of requirements will be initiated in order to further alleviate the burdens imposed on the maritime industry.last_img read more

401 Richmond arts haven facing huge tax hike

first_img“But the message here is, ‘No, sorry — we don’t care.’ That really speaks to the issue: What do we want the downtown core to become?” Facebook Advertisement Advertisement Advertisement Twitter 401 Richmond, a long-standing downtown haven for dozens of non-profit arts and culture organizations, is grappling with a property tax increase in January likely to cripple the many tenants it has long sheltered from skyrocketing market rents.In a matter of weeks, tenants will see their property tax bill, which they pay to the city separately from their rent to building owner Urbanspace, jump by about 85 per cent. By the end of the current assessment period in 2020, taxes will have nearly tripled from today, threatening the heritage building’s status as a vital cultural hub.“There are those who would look at a company like Urbanspace, which believes in the creative community and has actively supported it for 23 years, and think maybe they deserve some kind of break,” says David Plant, executive director of Trinity Square Video, one of many non-profit artist-run centres in 401 Richmond, a former factory at the corner of Richmond St. and Spadina Ave. Login/Register With: LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment last_img read more


first_imgAdvertisement Facebook Advertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement The Paramount video game adaptation, in which the actor plays the villain, was delayed after a fan outcry.Jim Carrey is speaking out for the first time about backlash over his upcoming Sonic the Hedgehog movie.The film was delayed by three months after the first trailer was widely mocked on social media over the character design of Sonic, the popular Sega video game character being voiced by Ben Schwartz. In March, Sonic the Hedgehog director Jeff Fowler said the Paramount film would now open Feb. 14, 2020 while the team retooled the character’s look. Carrey plays the villain Robotnik in the film. Login/Register With: Courtesy of Paramount Pictures and Sega of America Twitterlast_img read more

Mohawks oppose radioactive shipment

first_imgAPTN National NewsThree Mohawk communities are banding together stop the transportation of steam generators containing radioactive material through the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway system.The band councils of Akwesasne, Kahnawake and Tyendinaga released a joint statement Wednesday pledging to fight the shipment, which was authorized by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission Friday.“We wish to make it clear that we are absolutely, 100 per cent against this plan,” said Tyendinaga Chief Don Maracle. “We have an obligation to protect Mother Earth and her inhabitants.”The commission has given a one year license to energy firm Bruce Power to ship 16 decommissioned steam generators to Sweden for recycling.The generators would travel from Lake Huron, down the St. Clair River through to Lake Erie, Lake Ontario and then on through the St. Lawrence Seaway to the Atlantic Ocean before arriving in Sweden.The welded-shut generators, weighing about 100 tons, contain some radioactive waste, including plutonium 239.Bruce Power contends that the radioactive material is not dangerous. The company says a person standing a meter away from a generator for an hour would face exposure equal to that contained in one X-ray.The shipment, planned for sometime in the 2011 shipping season, has triggered strong opposition from cities and communities along the route.A coalition of 73 cities from Thunder Bay to Rimousky, Que., have also stated their opposition to the plan.There is also concern across the border. U.S. Republican Rep. Candice Miller has called on the U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to review the shipping plans.The Anishinabek Nation, representing 39 First Nations communities in Ontario, has also said it opposes the plan.Akwesasne Grand Chief Mike Mitchell said no First Nations were consulted about the shipment despite the route will take it through the territorial waters of the Mohawks.“It is disturbing that the CNSC has placed the interest of Bruce Power before the concerns shared by our Mohawk brothers and sisters,” said Mitchell, in the statement.“The St. Lawrence River provides drinking water to some 40 million people…If there is an accident, there is no place for us to go. This is our home. We cannot and will not tolerate the passage of nuclear waste through our territory,” said Kahnawake Grand Chief Michael Ahrihron Delisle, Jr.last_img read more

Ohio State mens soccer topples Indiana in overtime

OSU senior forward Kenny Cunningham (19) celbrates after a goal during a game agaisnt Penn State on Sept. 20 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. OSU tied 1-1.Credit: Ed Momot / For The LanternSenior defender Liam Doyle converted a penalty kick in overtime, extending the Ohio State men’s soccer team’s unbeaten streak to seven with a 1-0 victory at Indiana.The Buckeyes improved to 6-4-2 overall and 2-1-1 in Big Ten play, while the Hoosiers fell to 7-4-1 on the season and 1-3-0 in Big Ten conference action.The Hoosiers came out strong as they immediately took charge of the game.By the 12th minute in the first half, shots were 2-0 Indiana.The Hoosiers continued to pile up offense, but OSU redshirt senior goalkeeper Chris Froschauer came across with two saves in the 17th minute to prevent the Hoosiers from putting a point on the board.In the 21st minute Indiana earned a corner kick, but Froschauer blocked the corner attempt keeping the game scoreless.The Hoosiers came close to scoring in the 29th minute when a shot hit off the post in a one-on-one break.Froschauer gained his fifth save of the game in the 30th minute after a diving save to keep the Indiana off the board.OSU junior forward Danny Jensen tried to get it going for the Buckeyes when he attempted a header near post off a free kick. However, Indiana’s junior goalkeeper Colin Webb was able to save it. The final action of the first half came from the Buckeyes when OSU earned its first corner kick of the night in the 38th minute, but the kick was knocked away leaving the score at 0-0 heading into the second half.After a scoreless first half, both teams began the second frame looking to break the game open. In the 52nd minute, OSU earned another free kick that was taken by OSU senior defender and co-captain Liam Doyle. His shot barely missed sophomore forward Marcus McCrary in front of the net.The Hoosiers went for a shot attempt in the 61st minute, but Froschauer came up with another diving stop to keep the game scoreless. In the 73rd minute, Doyle took another free kick for the Buckeyes but Webb denied the attempt, keeping his clean sheet intact for the time being. McCrary fired another shot from a distance in the 85th minute, but his shot went wide of the net.The final five minutes of play resulted neither team finding the back of the net, sending the match to overtime. Neither team could manage to score as it headed into the final three minutes of overtime.In the last three minutes of the game, the Hoosiers earned a yellow card, giving the Buckeyes an opportunity for a penalty kick.Doyle made that opportunity count, finding the back of the net to win the game for the Buckeyes.Overall shots were 18-4 in favor of the Hoosiers, with a 6-2 lead in corner kicks.Froschauer had a season-high seven saves and improved to 6-4-2 on the season.The Buckeyes will continue on the road against Kentucky at 7 p.m. on Wednesday in Lexington, Kentucky. read more