To sell Obamacare, officials should learn from state success stories

first_imgSelling the public on the insurance requirement in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) — making sure people are aware of the opportunities and helping them find a plan — has proven to be a tremendous marketing challenge. So far, fewer than 10 percent of uninsured people in the U.S. have signed up for a plan through the federal health insurance exchange. However, several of the states that set up their own exchanges have provided bright spots during the ACA roll-out.Connecticut, through the quasi-state agency Access Health CT, has signed-up about 65 percent of the state’s uninsured people. John Quelch, professor in the Department of Health Policy and Management at Harvard School of Public Health, has co-authored a Harvard Business School case on Connecticut’s success story.“This is not like Field of Dreams, where if you build it they will come,” Quelch said in a Forbes magazine interview published July 16, 2014. “There are distinct categories of consumers, each of which needs to be addressed in a different way,” he said. This marketing approach helps policymakers ensure that the laws they write benefit those who need them. Read Full Storylast_img read more

She Loves Me, Starring Laura Benanti & More, Sets New Dates

first_img Laura Benanti View Comments Zachary Levi You’re going to have to wait a little longer for that “Vanilla Ice Cream!” The Broadway revival of She Loves Me, starring Laura Benanti, Zachary Levi, Jane Krakowski and more, will now begin previews on February 19, 2016 (instead of February 5) and officially open on March 17 (from March 3). Directed by Scott Ellis, the limited engagement will play through June 5 (instead of May 22) at Roundabout’s Studio 54.Featuring a book by Joe Masteroff, lyrics by Sheldon Harnick and music by Jerry Bock, She Loves Me follows Georg (Levi) and Amalia (Benanti), two parfumerie clerks who aren’t quite the best of friends. Constantly bumping heads while on the job, the sparring coworkers can’t seem to find common ground. But little do they know, the anonymous romantic pen pals they have both been falling for happen to be each other! Will love continue to blossom once their identities are finally revealed? The score features favorites such as “Vanilla Ice Cream,” “A Romantic Atmosphere,” “Dear Friend” and “She Loves Me.”The musical comedy’s cast will also includue René Auberjonois, Gavin Creel and Michael McGrath.She Loves Me is based on a play by Miklos Laszlo, whose story was also the basis for the 1940 James Stewart film The Shop Around the Corner and the 1998 Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan film You’ve Got Mail. Ellis directed Roundabout’s She Loves Me in 1993, which marked the first Broadway musical in the company’s history. The show was originally seen on the Great White Way in 1963 in a production helmed by Harold Prince.Broadway.com customers with tickets to canceled performances will be contacted with information on refunds or exchanges. She Loves Mecenter_img Show Closed This production ended its run on July 10, 2016 Star Files Related Showslast_img read more

Panama: Counter-narcotics fight is paying off

first_img PANAMA CITY, Panama – Thanks to Panama’s counter-narcotics investment of US$1.5 billion dollars since 2009, authorities seized 224.7 tons of drugs between 2009 and 2013. Between January and April, authorities seized 10.2 additional tons of drugs – mainly cocaine, marijuana and heroin – after 43.79 tons were confiscated during all of 2013, according to the National Integrated System for Criminal Statistics. “Drug trafficking is Panama’s greatest problem because [it uses the country to transfer] drugs from Colombia toward Honduras before the shipments are sent to the United States and Europe,” Minister for Public Security José Raúl Mulino said. The latest major seizure occurred during operation “Christ Lives” in early March, when Panama’s National Aeronaval Service (SENAN) seized 1,525 kilograms of cocaine contained in 61 sacks which were thrown overboard by the crew of a vessel about 16 nautical miles northeast of Tigre Island. No arrests were made. “We’ve managed to secure the country against drug trafficking,” Mulino added. “This is due in large part to the cooperation strategies we have developed with [Colombia and the United States] for this international fight.” Particularly important is the information exchange through Panama and Colombia’s Binational Border Commission, according to Frank Ábrego, the managing director of the Panamanian National Border Service. “This intelligence and communication work with Colombian security forces has allowed us [since 2008] to provide peace of mind and security to law-abiding citizens in our border areas and throughout the country as a whole,” Ábrego said. “This is because of the major commitment and unquestioned support of Colombian civil servants in training our civil servants so our country and people don’t suffer in the same way as our cousins to the south have because of criminal activity.” Colombian operatives train their Panamanian counterparts in monitoring inaccessible areas used by drug traffickers. Operation MARTILLO also has been essential in Panama’s success in the fight against drug trafficking. The initiative, which includes Canada, Belize, Colombia, Costa Rica, El Salvador, France, Guatemala, Honduras, the Netherlands, Nicaragua, Panama, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States, fights international criminal organizations by limiting their ability to use Central America as a transit area. “The surveillance carried out by U.S. Coast Guard planes and patrol boats in the Central American region has been crucial for the success of the large drug seizures that we have carried out in recent years,” Mulino said. In 2010, Panama also signed a US$250 million bilateral cooperation agreement with Italy for the purchase of 19 radar systems, eight helicopters and a digital mapping system. Under this agreement, Panama received two patrol boats in April to bolster a counter-narcotics arsenal that features four speedboats that have patrolled the country’s coasts since 2013. With these vessels, security forces can react with greater speed and scope in seizure operations, according to SENAN Deputy Director Luis Ruiz. “[These] vessels, which are practically automated, [along with] aircraft equipped with night vision that fly much faster than traditional helicopters, have added to the success of the operations,” he added. Additionally, Panama has built 14 aeronaval stations nationwide since 2011. “Guarding our country by land, sea and air from organized crime is the main point of the construction of these bases,” Mulino added. Panama accounts for 50% of seizures of drugs heading toward the United States, according to Mulino. “In the area of security, [Panama] is one of the main regional partners in the fight against drug trafficking and organized crime,” Gen. John Kelly, the commander of the U.S. Southern Command (USSOUTHCOM), said in January during the inauguration of the Punta Coco aeronaval station in the Las Perlas archipelago that was funded with a US$3.5 million investment by the U.S. Mulino said the base completes Panama’s security cordon in the Pacific Ocean. “The main challenge for the future will be to continue to safeguard the land, sea, and air with the help of technological equipment in order to continue to fight this international scourge,” he added. *Correspondent Alma Solís contributed to this report. By Dialogo May 28, 2014last_img read more

Nominations sought for annual pro bono awards

first_imgNominations sought for annual pro bono awards September 15, 2003 Regular News Nominations sought for annual pro bono awardscenter_img Lawyers who donate services to the needy are being sought for public recognition by the Supreme Court and The Florida Bar.One lawyer from each judicial circuit and an out-of-state recipient will receive the Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Award. The chief justice will give the Tobias Simon Pro Bono Service Award to the lawyer who is deemed an outstanding example of dedication to the legal needs of the poor.Nominations also are being solicited for the Chief Justice’s Law Firm Commendation and the Voluntary Bar Association Pro Bono Service Award. The awards recognize a firm and a voluntary bar association that have provided significant pro bono legal assistance to individuals or groups which cannot otherwise afford legal services.Nominations may be made by any person or organization by contacting the circuit representative shown below. Nomination forms are available from the Bar’s Public Information Department, telephone (800) 342-8060, ext. 5669, or via e-mail at jkrell-davis@flabar.org or can be downloaded off the “What’s New” section of the Bar’s Web site at www.flabar.org.Eligible lawyers must be licensed to practice in Florida and not be employed by an organization which primarily delivers free legal services to the poor. The nominee should be a lawyer who, with no expectation of receiving a fee, provides direct delivery of legal services in civil or criminal matters to a client or group that does not have the resources to hire counsel.The deadline is September 26.The Florida Bar President’s Pro Bono Service Awards were established in 1981 to recognize individual service in specific Florida judicial circuits.The Tobias Simon Pro Bono Service Award commemorates Miami civil rights lawyer Tobias Simon, who died in 1982.The chief justice’s awards are believed to be the first of their kind in the nation conferring recognition of a state’s highest court on a firm and voluntary bar for pro bono services.last_img read more

Increasing non-interest income: 3 ways analytics can help

first_imgHistorically, credit unions’ major focus was on interest income earned from loans. Prior to 2010, it accounted for 80% of overall income and was plentiful enough to push other sources down the list of priorities.It’s a different environment today. Interest rates have remained low for the last decade, and regulatory changes are squeezing revenue in areas like interchange income. As a result, credit unions’ focus has strategically shifted toward boosting sources of non-interest income.Regardless of size, most credit unions have increasing non-interest income as a goal in 2020 – and fortunately, there are numerous opportunities for growth. Here are three ways we help credit unions achieve non-interest income growth.Lift interchange-income through increased credit card usage.Many credit unions are looking for ways to revive lagging interchange income after regulatory changes such as Dodd-Frank substantially reduced what they earn on debit card transactions. One logical and effective avenue is to increase members’ credit card usage – the interchange income can be more than four times higher for each transaction.Using data analytics, it’s possible to identity which segments of a CU’s membership are the most likely to migrate from debit to credit card usage. An extensive analysis that incorporates data mining techniques, an examination of spending habits and patterns, and identification of unengaged members can lay the groundwork for a sophisticated marketing strategy. Analytics enables CUs to offer personalized, relevant incentives that members will respond to.Introduce new and innovative rewards-based checking accounts. Loan-to-share ratios are increasing, and the financial product landscape is more competitive than ever. Credit unions are looking for ways to improve product offerings to attract attention and deliver superior member experience.Traditional checking accounts just aren’t producing the right results anymore. But with analytics-driven insights, credit unions can create new suites of fee driven products with the rewards-based structures that members’ want, which will also deliver the non-interest income benefits they need.CBC, a California based credit union, used data analytics to launch new checking products that were highly popular with members. The analysis enabled them to buck the trend of more no-fee products, and instead roll out a new suite of checking products that provided the freedom to choose services and add-ons for a small recurring fee. CBC doubled the account balances in its premium checking accounts and increased debit card spend by more than 25%.Offering Courtesy Pay and Overdraft ServicesMost credit unions offer features like overdraft protection and debit courtesy pay that allow members to use their debit cards even when they have an insufficient balance. These services provide an immediate value to members – for a fee that’s assessed only when it is used.Each CU has a segment that’s more likely to benefit from and use these services – but many members may not know it’s even available.  Using data analytics, a credit union identified members with the highest likelihood to opt-into overdraft programs and pay the corresponding fees. The credit union was then able to focus efforts on the 25% of its membership that had three times the probability of usage.The path to generating more non-interest income is made up of a series of steps. Make sure each step is data-driven, relevant, and impactful. 1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Suchit Shah Suchit Shah is the COO of CU Rise Analytics, a Virginia-based CUSO. CU Rise helps credit unions that want to focus their time and resources on the most advantageous strategies … Web: www.cu-rise.com Detailslast_img read more

Baby Left at Wantagh Fire House

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York A 3-hour-old baby girl was left at a Wantagh fire house on Thanksgiving morning, Nassau County police said.Officers and medics responded to a report that a 4lb., 2oz baby was left at the fire house on Park Avenue, which is a dedicated AMT Children of Hope Baby Safe Haven drop off  location, at 11:46 a.m. Thursday, police said.Medics checked the baby before she was taken to a local hospital for further evaluation.The incident came about a week after a 6-week-old baby was found in a shoe box behind a Brentwood home.Police noted that the Wantagh baby is the 3,299 child that the Safe Haven organization has received nationally since it was founded in 1998 and 15th child this year in New York State.The foundation can be contacted at 1-877-796-HOPE (4673).last_img read more

Biden lands key endorsement as Democrats campaign in South Carolina

first_imgDemocratic presidential candidate Joe Biden won the endorsement of an influential black congressman from South Carolina on Wednesday, which could prove pivotal as he competes with national front-runner Bernie Sanders for the support of the state’s African-American voters in Saturday’s primary.Recent opinion polls show Biden, once the leading candidate in the race to be the party’s candidate in November, losing ground nationally with black voters to the surging senator from Vermont.US Representative James Clyburn’s endorsement carries weight in a state where African Americans make up about 60% of the Democratic electorate and where Biden is counting on a good showing after a fourth-place finish in Iowa, fifth place in New Hampshire and second in Nevada. Sanders, a democratic socialist, has taken command of the Democratic race after his resounding win in Nevada last week. Three days after South Carolina’s primary, voters in 14 states will go to the polls for the crucial Super Tuesday contests.At an event in North Charleston on Wednesday, Sanders touted his momentum and went after Biden by name, saying he would not be able to generate the turnout needed to defeat Republican President Donald Trump on Nov. 3.”We have come a long, long way,” Sanders said of his position in the top two of the state’s most recent opinion polls, along with Biden.Clyburn, the No. 3 Democrat in the US House of Representatives, endorsed Biden at a news conference, saying he could “think of no one with the type of integrity, no one more committed to the fundamental principles to make this country what it is than my good friend.” Biden responded: “I’m here, heart and soul, with everything I’ve got to earn the support of the people of South Carolina. Nothing is expected or guaranteed.”Most of the Democratic candidates started Wednesday with speeches at a breakfast in South Carolina hosted by the National Action Network, founded by civil rights leader Al Sharpton. The event focused on mobilizing black churches to get out the vote.Rep. James Clyburn announces his endorsement of Democratic U.S. presidential candidate and former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden in North Charleston, South Carolina, U.S., February 26, 2020. (REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz)UNPRECEDENTED AD SPENDINGThe South Carolina and upcoming Super Tuesday elections come amid unprecedented spending on advertising by candidates and their supporters.Led by the two billionaires in the race – progressive activist Tom Steyer and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg – campaigns and political action committees (PACs) backing them have spent nearly $900 million on TV and digital ads since January 2019, according to the Wesleyan Media Project, which tracks campaign spending at Wesleyan University in Connecticut.Bloomberg has spent the most, dropping $377 million on 444,000 ads since entering the race just three months ago, while Steyer has spent $145 million. Those amounts dwarf the $62 million spent by this time in the campaign by a super PAC supporting Republican Jeb Bush in 2016, then the highest amount spent up to this point in a presidential nominating race.So far this cycle, Sanders has spent about $20 million and Biden $4.7 million, the university said. Trump has spent about $17 million on ads so far.Biden’s campaign announced on Wednesday that it was making a six-figure broadcast and digital ad buy in Super Tuesday states including Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina, where the Democratic electorates also have a high percentage of black voters. Cash-strapped Biden is also counting on a wave of free media should he win South Carolina.Denise Washington of Georgetown whispers into the ear of Democratic U.S. presidential candidate and former U.S. Vice President Joe Biden during a campaign event in Georgetown, South Carolina, U.S. February 26, 2020. (REUTERS/Elizabeth Frantz)SHOTS AT SANDERSThe candidates acknowledged the sharp jabs they threw at each other hours earlier – in Tuesday’s debate they repeatedly attacked Sanders as a risky choice to lead the party in November – but pledged to eventually unify behind one candidate.Pete Buttigieg, the moderate former mayor of South Bend, Indiana, criticized Sanders during the debate for the changing estimates on the costs of his proposals such as government-run healthcare.”I can tell you exactly how it all adds up. It adds up to four more years of Donald Trump,” Buttigieg said.Sharpton, in introducing Sanders at the breakfast, urged the crowd not to get caught up in the “socialist” branding, noting that the tag has been used in the past to discredit leaders of movements.”Socialism, capitalism, it all has not worked out for black folks,” Sharpton said. “If socialism is on your mind, read about what they said about Martin Luther King Jr. and others.”Senator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts has also sought to differentiate herself from Sanders, a friend and progressive ally. She campaigned at the historically black South Carolina State University in Orangeburg on Wednesday, hoping that strong back-to-back debate performances would give her a boost after disappointing finishes in the first three states.”I’m the woman who’s going to beat Donald Trump,” she said, before listing policies to combat combating racial inequities such as voter disenfranchisement, as well as funding historically black colleges and ending the criminalization of marijuana.Topics :last_img read more

​Green Investment Bank ‘very confident’ on fundraising for wind farm fund

first_img“There is already some co-investment going on with the Saudi Arabian fund,” he told attendees at the event in London.A spokeswoman for the GIB said she was not familiar with the fund alluded to by the MP, but added that any fundraising announcements would be made in due course.The bank earlier this week singled out pension and sovereign wealth funds as the target market for its wind farm vehicle.Saudi Arabia’s central bank, the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority, has so far managed the currency reserves and revenue from the country’s oil production – estimated at $730bn (€536bn) – but there have been discussions to launch a formal sovereign wealth fund.The GIB’s chief executive, Shaun Kingsbury, was also confident pension funds would be interested in the proposed wind farm fund, as he said the asset class was “perfect” for the industry due to its low operating costs and resulting high cash outflows.A trustee of the BT Pension Scheme previously said banks such as GIB would be “quite critical” in creating co-investment vehicles that would allow for the financing of smaller deals, sharing out the risk of each transaction.Kingsbury joked that he would need “a little while” before the next fund was announced, as the wind farm vehicle was only unveiled this week, but he was nonetheless positive about its potential impact on the market.“We will see if we can get BT interested in the first [fund], and then of course if we do it and it works, and it’s successful, then the market will copy us,” he said.“Then, not only will we be raising the next fund, but there will be other folks out there doing it, and that’s great.” The UK’s Green Investment Bank is “very confident” it will be able to attract third-party capital to its investment funds, as wind farms are the “perfect” asset for pension schemes.Lord Smith, chairman of the state-backed institution, said that while the £1bn (€1.2bn) offshore wind farm fund was only recently announced, the GIB had done “a wee bit of homework” and was sure it would see outside investors commit capital to both the fund and the fund management subsidiary.Speaking as the bank launched its annual report, Michael Fallon, government minister in the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills and Department of Energy & Climate Change, indicated that Lord Smith’s certainty could stem from more than simple confidence.The Conservative MP said that while privatisation of the GIB was one option for attracting private capital, co-investment with other institutions would be another “preliminary route” that would enable the bank to become an “enduring institution”.last_img read more

‘Pushers’ arrested in drug buy-bust

first_imgCasiple and Sodusta were caught after theyallegedly sold a sachet of suspected shabu to an undercover officer for P6,000around 6:05 p.m. on Dec. 14. Police identified them as Daryl Casiple andArjay Sodusta, both residents of Barangay Monpon, Barotac Nuevo. Thesuspects were detained in the municipal police station’s custodial facility, facing charges for violation of Republic Act 9165, or theComprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002./PNcenter_img ILOILO City – Two suspected drug pushers werearrested in a buy-bust operation in Barangay Tabucan, Barotac Nuevo, Iloilo.last_img

National team secures valuable sponsorship to attend World Chess Olympiad

first_imgTHE Guyana chess team,scheduled to depart for the 42nd chess Olympiad in Baku, Azerbaijan, received a significant donation for their voyage, the latest coming on Friday from the National Sports Commission (NSC).Sport Director Christopher Jones, in handing over his contribution, commended the team for its efforts in gaining corporate sponsorship;and was heartened by the generous responseAttorney-at-law,James Bond,also came on board with sponsorship, giving a sizable amount to assist the team with their travel expenses.Efforts from companies such as Somwaru Travel Service, Kings Jewellery World, Dr Sengupta and Associates, Hardware Depot, Jumbo Jet Auto Sales, and William Walker of Oasis Café were significant in ensuring the team’s participation.The 42nd chess Olympiad will take place from September 1-14, and Team Guyana consists of six males in Candidate Master (CM) Wendell Muesa, CM Anthony Drayton, Haifeng Su, CM Taffin Khan, CM Ronuel Greenidge and Roberto Neto.It also includes WCM Maria Varona Thomas, Sherrifa Ali, Julia Clementson, Yolanda Persaud and Jessica Clementson as the females.Muesa will also double- up as the Coachlast_img read more