Texas Senate approves legislation aimed at curbing municipal restrictions on rooftop solar

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Houston Chronicle:The solar industry has run into obstacles over the past few years as it tries to convince Texans to install solar panels to generate their own electricity. The industry has battled homeowner associations that don’t want panels in their neighborhoods, doesn’t benefit like it does in other states from laws that require utilities to buy excess power and faces restrictions from some cities, especially in the Dallas area, that prohibit the panels on rooftops.But the industry may be getting some traction to fight municipal restrictions after the Texas Senate passed a bill this week that would prevent cities from placing restrictions on solar panels.A companion bill in the Texas House has not moved forward since it was introduced, according to legislative records, but Katherine Gensler, vice president of regulatory affairs for the Washington, D.C.,-based Solar Energy Industries Association, urged the Texas House to take up the measure.More: Bill would stop Texas cities from barring solar panels Texas Senate approves legislation aimed at curbing municipal restrictions on rooftop solarlast_img read more

Trauma Tuesday: Winter Olympic Wipeouts

first_imgOlympians prime themselves for glory, practicing and conditioning for years leading up to their shot for a medal. While athletes that seize gold and silver are revered as champions, those who massively wipeout are perhaps just as memorable. From ice to snow, here are some of the best Winter Olympic wipeouts from over the years.Eight-time American medalist Apolo Ohno will be forever remembered as an Olympic great. Watch as he literally “takes out” the competition at the 2002 games in Salt Lake.Hermann Maier’s crash at the 1998 Nagano games is legendary for his massive body-contorting tumble. What’s even more legendary are the two gold medals he won just days after this run. Check it out.Last but certainly no less painful is this compilation of Winter Olympic crashes, falls, and wipeouts. They say pain is totally mental but we’re not so sure after watching this.last_img read more

To discover what you have to give, Put yourself there

first_imgHave you ever felt a calling to help, but you weren’t entirely clear what form that help should take? It’s a puzzle many credit union leaders confront. That’s because the credit union movement has rallied around the collective battle cry of “people helping people.” While most everyone working in or leading a credit union is aware of the mission, quite a few wonder, what exactly does “people helping people” look like in our cooperative? How can we live out the industry’s mission in our community? Who needs our help the most and how do we find them?The answers are clearer for some than others. Yet, even those with a solid giving-back plan in place often discover even more ways to contribute after they begin. The key, according to LiFE Federal Credit Union (LiFE FCU) CEO Dustin Fuller, is simply to put yourself in the place you believe you’re needed. The rest, he insists, usually happens naturally.Take Fuller’s recent credit union-sponsored mission trip, for instance. Fuller and LiFE FCU’s former chief lending officer (now CU Evolution CEO) Deke Alexander had a crystal clear vision for how their credit union employees could impact the lives of some of the world’s poorest people. Modeling their outreach after traditional church-sponsored mission trips, the pair gathered a group of employees and credit union members together and organized a mission trip of their own. continue reading » 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Samsung Highlights Upcoming One UI 3.0 Features, Could Begin Rollout This Month

first_imgSamsung has highlighted some key features of One UI 3.0 on its Malaysian website. It will include an improved lock screen, full-screen calls, and an enhanced Quick panel. The South Korean tech giant has been testing One UI 3.0, based on Android 11, for the past couple of weeks. As per the website, One UI 3.0 may be launched this month or soon after. Samsung Galaxy S20 received One UI 3.0 with Android 11 as a developer beta recently, and now Samsung has updated its website to include features of the upcoming user interface.One UI 3.0 will provide a simpler, more convenient experience, as per Samsung. One UI 3.0 will have an enhanced Quick panel that will let users switch back and forth between their music and videos. The notification panel will provide more information at a glance, even when the phone is locked. It will also support full-screen calls.- Advertisement –last_img read more

What it means for U.S. antitrust probes

first_imgMeanwhile, the EU hasn’t yet filed legal charges against Amazon, so it could be years before it announces any penalties. It could also reach a settlement with Amazon or drop the case altogether.Shared concerns Regulators in both Europe and the U.S. have objected to Amazon’s dual role as a marketplace operator and seller, arguing that this may foster anticompetitive conduct. They’ve pointed out that Amazon’s role as a marketplace service provider gives it privileged access to non-public third-party seller data, such as order volume history, shipping data and sellers’ past performance, that isn’t available to merchants. EU officials and Democrats in the House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee share the view that this data from third-party sellers is used to inform Amazon’s first-party business decisions, such as what products to introduce and where to set the price. The insight “allows Amazon to focus its offers in the best-selling products across product categories and to adjust its offers in view of non-public data of competing sellers,” the EU said in a statement on Tuesday.Similarly, the antitrust subcommittee included testimony from third-party sellers in its investigation who said their businesses were damaged when Amazon launched competing products. For example, one retired third-party merchant was forced to exit his seller business after Amazon allegedly copied his products, “down to the color palette,” undercut him on price and “took over the Buy Box for his listings, ‘killing his sales,’” the antitrust subcommittee said, citing an interview with the seller.Amazon has long maintained that it doesn’t look at individual sellers’ data to build private-label products, as it would violate internal policies. The company has acknowledged, however, that it may refer to aggregate data in the process of building its own products. Amazon has also rebutted regulators’ claims that it exploits its control over the “Buy Box” to give preferential treatment to its own products and those featured by sellers who use its logistics and delivery service, called Fulfillment By Amazon. The “Buy Box” refers to a section off to the side of a product page where sellers compete for their offers to be featured. Amazon has maintained that the Buy Box show the offer it thinks customers will prefer, while factoring in things like price and delivery speed. At a July hearing in front of Congress, CEO Jeff Bezos acknowledged the Buy Box algorithm “indirectly” favors offers that can be shipped with Prime when determining which sellers are featured.The House antitrust subcommittee probe and the EU investigation raised questions about third-party sellers’ ability to reach Prime users.In the October report, U.S. lawmakers said they spoke to third-party sellers who feel they have “no choice” but to pay for Fulfillment by Amazon, which makes their products Prime eligible, in order to “maintain a favorable search result position, to reach Amazon’s more than 112 million Prime members, and to win the Buy Box.” Winning the Buy Box is crucial for third-party sellers products to be successful. The antitrust subcommittee estimated that roughly 80% of Amazon sales go through the Buy Box and “the percentage is even higher for mobile purchases.”Prime members are also an important source of revenue for third-party sellers because they tend to generate more sales on Amazon’s marketplace than non-Prime users, the European Commission said. Prime members don’t just spend more money per purchase, but they also tend to shop on the site more frequently. With the EU and the U.S. questioning Amazon’s market power over sellers, it’s now up to Amazon to provide proof that it treats merchants fairly.The company flatly disputed the House antitrust subcommittee’s findings, calling them “fringe notions.” Amazon can reply to the Commission’s conclusions in writing or via an oral hearing.“The ball is in Amazon’s court to disprove these allegations,” said Shaoul Sussman, a legal fellow with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance, a nonprofit.What’s nextThe EU and U.S. identified similar issues with Amazon’s treatment of sellers, but the potential penalties and remedies they could settle on are likely to be different.Democratic staffers in the House Judiciary subcommittee on antitrust recommended a wide range of remedies, including forcing companies to prove mergers would not harm competition and splitting different business units. For Amazon, this could result in it spinning off the third-party marketplace from its core retail operations.As for the FTC probe, Amazon could be hit with fines or the company could reach a settlement with the agency where it agrees to certain business restrictions.Similarly, the EU has a range of penalties it could propose, including a fine of up to 10% of Amazon’s annual global revenue, or up to $28 billion based on 2019 figures.The EU could also propose behavioral remedies, which attempt to preserve competition by requiring the companies to refrain from certain business conduct. But behavioral remedies can be “hit or miss” in terms of effectiveness, since some companies may find it “more profitable to violate the remedy and just pay the fines if they’re found in violation again,” Sussman said.The most aggressive tool in the EU’s arsenal would be to recommend a line of business separation, Sussman said. For Amazon, this might mean that the EU orders it to stop selling its private-label brands in Europe.“That type of decision won’t affect the U.S. or any other market where Amazon sells those goods, but they could say, if you’re transacting in Europe, you’re not allowed to be a brand owner or manufacturer and operator of the platform,” Sussman said.Sussman and other antitrust experts said they remain skeptical of whether the U.S. will be successful in bringing a case against Amazon and even if antitrust officials do, the remedies are likely to be limited. By contrast, European regulators have stepped up their efforts to crack down on big tech companies like Facebook, Google and Apple in recent years, earning them the reputation of being more aggressive.The U.S. and Europe have different approaches when evaluating whether a company is engaging in anticompetitive conduct.U.S. antitrust law is centered on the consumer welfare standard, which relies heavily on increased prices as an indication of harm. That standard has been hard to apply to tech companies because many of the products and services offered are free, or low cost, in the case of Amazon.In the U.S., a company like Amazon can argue that whatever harm it’s causing competitors is offset by any benefits to consumers, i.e. lower prices and greater selection, Sussman said.That argument is harder to prove in front of European antitrust enforcers. The EU takes a wider view when determining whether a company’s business practices are anticompetitive, including harms to consumer choice, potential competitors and innovation.As a result, it can be easier to bring an antitrust case in the EU than it is in the U.S., said New York University law professor Eleanor Fox. This is part of the reason why the U.S. is trying to catch up with EU regulators, Fox said, which have carried out a crackdown on U.S. tech giants including Google, Facebook and Apple.“That difference is what we’re struggling with and it’s why the U.S. has been so slow to make any claims at all,” Fox said. Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos on October 02, 2019.Elif Ozturk | Anadolu Agency | Getty Images The European Commission is still carrying out its investigation, but if it finds Amazon violated antitrust rules, the probe could provide new material to strengthen similar antitrust cases being built against Amazon in the U.S.Congress and the Federal Trade Commission are also investigating Amazon’s treatment of third-party sellers. It’s unclear what the scope of the FTC’s investigation is, but the agency has been interviewing third-party sellers as part of the probe, Bloomberg reported last September. The House Judiciary antitrust subcommittee published the results of its 16-month investigation into Amazon and other tech giants last month, where it found Amazon has monopoly power over third-party sellers on the marketplace.Both investigations are in different stages. After publishing a sweeping report on the competitive practices of Amazon, Apple, Google and Facebook, lawmakers are expected to introduce legislation based on their policy recommendations.- Advertisement – Amazon is facing renewed pressure to answer questions about its use of third-party seller data after European Union regulators brought antitrust charges against the company on Tuesday. Europe’s top antitrust watchdog, the European Commission, accused Amazon of violating competition law by using nonpublic data it gathers from third-party merchants to unfairly compete against them. It also opened a second investigation into Amazon’s business practices related to the Prime label and the “Buy Box,” which offers customers a one-click button to add a product to their shopping cart.Amazon rejected the European Commission’s accusations and said it supports thousands of businesses in Europe. – Advertisement –center_img – Advertisement – – Advertisement –last_img read more

Wolf Administration Approves Two More Facilities to Begin Medical Marijuana Production

first_img December 19, 2017 SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Wolf Administration Approves Two More Facilities to Begin Medical Marijuana Productioncenter_img Human Services,  Medical Marijuana,  Press Release,  Public Health Harrisburg, PA – The Pennsylvania Department of Health today announced GTI Pennsylvania, LLC, Montour County, and Pennsylvania Medical Solutions, LLC, Lackawanna County, have been approved to begin growing and processing medical marijuana at their facilities.“Pennsylvania now has six grower/processors that are fully operational, bringing us one step closer to providing medical marijuana to patients,” Governor Wolf said. “We expect more grower/processors to become operational in the coming days. The program is moving forward to deliver medication to patients with serious medical conditions in the next few months.”In order to become operational, the grower/processors underwent several inspections from the Department of Health. The facilities also are fully integrated with the seed-to-sale tracking system. The grower/processors will now be able to begin accepting seeds and clones to grow medical marijuana.“More than 9,300 patients have registered to participate in the program, and are in the process of visiting an approved practitioner to get their patient certification,” Acting Health Secretary and Physician General Dr. Rachel Levine said. “More than 200 physicians have been approved as practitioners, with nearly 300 more going through the process.”The Medical Marijuana Program was signed into law by Governor Tom Wolf on April 17, 2016. Since that time, the department has:Completed the Safe Harbor temporary guidelines and Safe Harbor Letter application process, as well as approved more than 300 applications;Completed temporary regulations for growers/processors, dispensaries physicians and laboratories, all which have been published in the Pennsylvania Bulletin;Issued permits to grower/processors and dispensaries;Developed the Medical Marijuana Physician Workgroup;Approved four training providers for physician continuing education;Approved two laboratories to test medication before it is delivered to patients;Launched the Patient and Caregiver Registry; andContinue to work with permittees to ensure they will be operational within six months.The Medical Marijuana Program became effective on May 17, 2016, and is expected to be fully implemented by 2018. The program will offer medical marijuana to patients who are residents of Pennsylvania and under a practitioner’s care for the treatment of a serious medical condition as defined by the Medical Marijuana Law.Questions about the Medical Marijuana Program can be emailed to RA-DHMedMarijuana@pa.gov. Information is also available on the Department of Health website at www.health.pa.gov.For more information, follow us on Facebook and Twitter.last_img read more

Flash Flood Warning For Ripley And Dearborn Counties

first_imgThe National Weather Service in Wilmington has issued a Flash Flood Warning for Ripley County and Northwestern Dearborn County until Sunday, February 25, at 4:15 AM.At 939 PM EST, radar indicated that heavy rain had fallen across the warned area. Up to one inch of rain has already fallen. Heavy rain continues to fall with another one inch possible. Runoff from this excessive rainfall will cause flash flooding to occur.Some locations that will experience flooding include Batesville, Bright, Versailles, Milan, Osgood, Dillsboro, Moores Hill, Logan, Manchester, Sunman, St. Leon, Holton, Napoleon, Millhousen, Rexville, Cold Springs, Penntown, Interstate 74 at US Route 52, Friendship and Versailles Lake.Move to higher ground now. Act quickly to protect your life. Be especially cautious at night when it is harder to recognize the dangers of flooding.last_img read more

Turkey’s Guliyev stuns field to win 200 metres

first_imgBy Mitch PhillipsLONDON, England (Reuters) – Ramil Guliyev, representing Turkey after switching allegiance from Azerbaijan, pulled off a shock 200 metres victory at the World Championships yesterday, edging an emotional favourite Wayde van Niekerk into second place in a blanket finish.The 27-year-old Guliyev, who had never won a medal in a senior global event, finished just the stronger to triumph in 20.09 seconds before setting off on a lap of honour carrying the flags of both of his nations.South African van Niekerk, who took the 400m title on Tuesday, had been seeking to match American Michael Johnson’s achievement of doing the 200/400m double at the Gothenburg worlds in 1995, but had to settle for silver in 20.11 seconds.Jereem Richards of Trinidad and Tobago was given the same time but was relegated to third by one thousandth of a second.Isaac Makwala of Botswana, the crowd favourite after his illness travails initially saw him barred from competing this week, started strongly but faded to sixth.In the absence of Usain Bolt, who had won the event in the last four championships, it always looked a wide open race, but even with the most level playing field for a decade, few were looking at lane five for the likely winner.van Niekerk, Makwala, Richards and U.S. duo Isiah Young and Ameer Webb all looked stronger on paper, while the home crowd also focused on local favourite Nathaneel Mitchell-Blake, who eventually came through for fourth.Those with a keen athletics eye might point to the fact that Guliyev’s junior best is second only to Bolt’s but, after a decade of minor medals in minor championships, and at the age of 27, his chances of global gold looked slim to say the least.NO SHOCKGuliyev, who became a Turkish citizen in 2011 and was cleared to represent his new country in 2013, did fire out a warning in the semi-finals when he won his heat ahead of Webb and van Niekerk and, though he slipped into the final pretty much under the radar, he had been confident all along.“This is not a shock,” he said. “But it does not feel real.“I have shown my best throughout this competition. I delivered my best race at the right time. I’m so happy to be world champion. This is the best moment of my career.“I was competing against some of the best athletes in the world, so it didn’t bother me that the attention was on them. Maybe at the next competition everyone will look at me instead.”A choked-up van Niekerk could barely speak and was upset by what he said was a lack of respect for his 400m victory.“It was a tough week, there were a lot of people who felt I didn’t deserve it,” he said.“I worked just as hard as every other competitor and showed everyone respect, but I don’t believe I got the respect I deserved after the 400.”Makwala said: “I’ve had one of the craziest championship journeys ever. I pray I won’t have to face this again.“I was feeling good but the last 50m I was feeling tired.”last_img read more

Williamson century guides Black Caps past Pakistan

first_imgA century from Kane Williamson helped New Zealand to a 61-run win over Pakistan via the Duckworth-Lewis method in their rain-hit opening one-day international.Captain Williamson (115) scored his 10th ODI century to get the Black Caps to 315-7 after they were put in to bat at Basin Reserve in Wellington on Saturday.Colin Munro (58) and Henry Nicholls (50) scored half-centuries and Pakistan were never in the chase in the first of five ODIs.The tourists were reduced to 37-4 by Tim Southee (3-22) and Trent Boult (2-35) and got to 166-6 when the rain hit, ending the game in the 31st over with Fakhar Zaman unbeaten on 82.On a hard pitch with a tinge of grass, Pakistan opted to bowl and they were put under early pressure as Munro made a flying start, bring up his fifty off 33 balls.Hasan Ali (3-61) had Munro caught behind to slow the Black Caps down before Williamson was dropped on 26, edging Faheem Ashraf (1-58) behind, but Sarfraz Ahmed was unable to hang onto the catch.That would prove to be costly as Williamson and Martin Guptill (48) combined for a 73-run partnership.Ross Taylor (12) was out cheaply at the hands of Hasan and Tom Latham (3) also went quickly.Nicholls and Mohammad Amir (1-57) were involved in a nasty mid-pitch collision in the 44th over, but both were able to continue.Williamson flashed Ali through point for four to bring up his century – the first in an ODI at the Basin Reserve in 43 years – as the Black Caps made 87 off the final 10 overs despite the captain and Nicholls’ departure.Pakistan’s chances of a successful chase were ruined early.Southee had Azhar Ali (6) lbw and the Pakistan opener unsuccessfully reviewed, before Babar Azam (0) was trapped in front two deliveries later.Mohammad Hafeez (1) hooked Boult to Southee on the boundary in the fourth over to leave Pakistan at 13-3.Shoaib Malik (13) was the next to go, poking at a Southee ball to be caught behind, while Sarfraz (8) was trapped in front by Todd Astle (1-29).Zaman (82 not out) and Shadab Khan (28) rallied for Pakistan with a 78-run partnership before that was broken by Boult.Rain then ended Pakistan’s slim hopes of pulling off an unlikely victory, giving the Black Caps a 1-0 series lead ahead of game two on Tuesday. (Omnisport).last_img read more

UNILAG Set to Host University Games

first_img“Without being immodest, I can confidently tell you that the University of Lagos is prepared to make the 2019 NUGA Games a memorable one. We believe in the ideals of NUGA and in the capacity of its sporting competitions to raise all-round graduates who are equipped for solid service to the nation and humanity. That is why we will spare no effort in our preparations.“The Local Organising Committee (LOC) and its various sub-committees have been set up and their members have been working diligently. Our sporting facilities have been upgraded to world-class standard, such that our young athletes now have the platform to showcase their talents unhindered,” the VC said.The University of Lagos made a bid to host the 26th edition of the NUGA tournament last year beating the University of Jos for the hosting right to emerge the winner.“The forthcoming NUGA Games to be hosted by the University of Lagos will the mother of all editions,” Ogundipe boasted. President of the UNILAG alumni, John Momoh, who also doubles as the Chairman LOC, said the occasion was an epoch-making event. “We are all looking forward to a very successful event,” the Chairman Channels Television said.In his reaction, the President of NUGA, Professor Stephen Hamalyfeto, admitted that it was not an easy task giving UNILAG the nod to host the 26th edition of the games as many other universities contested for the hosting right.He, however, hopes the games would open the door to discover talents that would represent the country at the World University Games and other international competitions.“We are confident in UNILAG because it has the facilities and the clouts to host the competition. We want to see the best out of UNILAG,” Hamalyfeto said.The highlight of the occasion was the handing of the NUGA flag to Professor Ogundipe, who then handed it over to Mr. Momoh.This will be the third time that the University of Lagos will be hosting the games, 51 years after it hosted the first one in 1968 and the second in 1998. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram • Signs MOU with NUGAThe Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Professor Oluwatoyin Ogundipe yesterday at the institution’s Senate Chamber during the signing of Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the university and the Nigerian Universities Games Association promised to host an unprecedented NUGA Games.Professor Ogundipe promised to make the 2019 NUGA Games a memorable one.last_img read more