Weight of the World: Challenges in Property Preservation

first_img Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Weight of the World: Challenges in Property Preservation The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago November 1, 2019 3,534 Views  Print This Post Seth Welborn is a Reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of Harding University, he has covered numerous topics across the real estate and default servicing industries. Additionally, he has written B2B marketing copy for Dallas-based companies such as AT&T. An East Texas Native, he also works part-time as a photographer. Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago 2019-11-01 Seth Welborn Previous: The Week Ahead: The State of Property Preservation Next: Apple Joins Fight Against California’s Housing Crisis Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Home / Daily Dose / Weight of the World: Challenges in Property Preservation Subscribe Related Articles Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Editor’s note: This feature originally appeared in the November issue of DS News, now available onlineHousing remains a bright spot in economic growth, according to commentary from the Fannie Mae Economic and Strategic Research (ESR) Group. Risks to the ESR Group’s forecast remain biased to the downside, while trade tensions between the U.S. and China continue to pose the greatest threat to growth, but housing is expected to be a source of strength in the near term. With this improved economic activity in housing, competition between service providers remains strong.However, according to Chad Mosely, Chief Relationship Officer at MCS, competition brings its own complications when it comes to maintaining a top-notch team.“As we are currently experiencing a strong economy, we have seen that finding vendors and employees can often be challenging,” he told DS News. “In addition to not having as many vendors and employees looking for work, we are also competing against a robust homebuilding industry.”Alan Jaffa, CEO, Safeguard Properties, noted that current employment conditions, at least in the property preservation space, could be impacting costs.According to Xactware pricing trend data, 2018 average property preservation and maintenance retail labor rates rose by an average 4.3% across the board, with drywall installers showing a 10% increase.“The labor market also is tightening for skilled talent for inspector/contractor networks,” said Martin. “As volumes decline, it is not as profitable for them to invest time and money in maintaining their mortgage field services businesses.”The price of property preservation and maintenance has also been in flux in recent years, according to Rob Martin, Product Manager for Property Solutions at Xactware, and with pricing so volatile, costs may not be what they seem.“Cost data indicated price volatility throughout many categories during 2018 and early 2019,” Martin said. “These price fluctuations, some of which were quite sudden, rendered older and outdated pricing data sets too unreliable for making business decisions.”Cheryl Travis-Johnson, COO, VRM Mortgage Services, noted that one of the biggest challenges in property preservation is costs between the servicer and the vendor.“The seller wants to keep costs down, and the vendor needs their costs to cover their profit margin,” Travis-Johnson said. “If they don’t meet in a good place, you risk having the vendor compromise to remain sustainable.”Staying on the Same PageAnother ongoing challenge on the property preservation front is working to ensure that all stakeholders in the property preservation chain are the same page. Jaffa noted that timeframe problems can often crop up, as not every vendor and service provider works exactly the same way.“Completion timeframes differ among investors, and local codes often require services beyond the scope of the work assigned to property preservation companies by clients,” Jaffa said.“Another current challenge we have seen in the industry is the enhanced oversight of cities with vacant properties,” Mosely said.Over 1.5 million U.S. single-family homes and condos are vacant, representing 1.6% of all homes, according to a new report from ATTOM Data Solutions. The report revealed that there are a total of 9,612 “zombie” homes or properties facing possible foreclosure which have been vacated by their owners nationwide, with the highest number of zombie properties in New York (2,428), followed by Florida (1,634), Illinois (985), Ohio (891), and New Jersey (463).When it comes to managing these properties, Mosely told DS News that communication is key.“As more and more cities establish new legislation to protect and preserve their communities, we are constantly evolving our property registration process to keep up with these updates,” Mosely said. “This includes maintaining communication with code officials, reviewing ordinances, and updating our property registration matrix to determine the risk of properties.”A Daunting ForecastOf course, damaging natural disasters, ranging from storms to wildfires, earthquakes, and floods, all present an increasingly significant risk to the property preservation industry. Chad Mosely suggested that leveraging technology is the key to staying ahead of these dangers, and to responding to them properly when they do occur.Advancing technology can allow servicers and vendors to track the paths of storms and identify the properties at the highest risk of damage, Mosley said.“This permits servicers to prioritize which properties need to be addressed first, and also enables them to prioritize customer outreach immediately.”Costs, of course, can also be elevated following disasters, as Jaffa pointed out, thanks to factors such as debris disposal.Many of the challenges associated with disaster preparedness come down to the bottom line of money, both on the servicer and vendor front.Jane Mason, Founder and CEO of Clarifire, stressed how servicers are going to need to change their previous notions about natural disasters moving forward, at least in part to reduce the current high costs associated with disaster preparedness.“As any mortgage servicer will attest, managing through natural disaster events can wreak havoc on the cost of servicing,” Mason said. “This is why today’s technology needs to help reduce risk for servicers, as well as their borrowers and investors, when a disaster occurs. The goal is to minimize expenses and add controls during events that can quickly go in the other direction if planning and proactive strategies are not in place.”In disaster areas, servicers are going to face competition among vendors and local resources, and cooperation is required.“Not only are we sharing vendors in the affected areas, but many times, the vendors are personally affected by the disasters and may either not be able to perform the work or be limited in the amount of work that they can accept,” Mosely said.Jaffa concurred, stating, “Property preservation companies need to assess the capabilities of their inspector and contractor networks in the affected area. Often, because those inspectors and contractors in the area of the disasters have been impacted themselves, preservation companies need to reallocate resources for periods of time and adjust as needed.”According to Alan Jaffa, “time is of the essence” when it comes to these events. This means vendors and serviers must prioritize ahead of time by establishing allowables so affected properties can be preserved on the property preservation provider’s first visit.“With the volume of properties affected and the potential for serious damages heightened, property preservation vendors cannot get delayed by lengthy bid cycles with the client or investor,” Jaffa said. He also recommended prioritizing damage repairs in a descending manner from most critical to least critical.“For example, vendors need to address any leaks before they begin cleanup services, like removing water-soaked items and debris,” Jaffa said.The U.S. has  experienced 36 major disasters so far in 2019, according to data from Fannie Mae, and for those homes in disaster-areas, preparation begins at the building process. Mike Hernandez, VP for Housing Access and Disaster Response & Rebuild at Fannie Mae, stated that “preparedness should include far more than financial steps and logistics.”A study by the National Bureau of Economic Research found that mortgages written on homes in these “exposed locations” are being shed by banks and absorbed by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. “This implies that homeowners and investors have been making location decisions without properly pricing the cost of potential peril, and that the government has been enabling the oversight,” the Harvard Business Review reporter.Chad Mosely also noted that the number of homes in high-risk areas has grown.“As growth and population have increased, properties affected by natural disasters have increased,” Mosley said. “As a result, there are more homes in areas that could be affected by natural disasters. As such, it is critical that we continue to perfect processes and technology to address these risks as they arise.”Mosely added that the most important part of preparation is to have the finances available ahead of time in the event of a disaster, especially those in disaster-prone areas.“We recommend that servicers have a pre-approved emergency allowable for natural disasters that allow completion of certain emergency work to prevent additional damage (such as drywall removal and water extractions),” he said. “These services could make the difference in a property having repairable damage versus catastrophic damage.”The problem with preparing, Mosely added, is that storms are often unpredictable.“There are many instances where servicers will spend time and money protecting homes from damage, but then the storm changes its course and hits many homes not protected,” he said.To alleviate the headache of dealing with the unexpected, making you sure there are clear guidelines in place between servicers and vendors can make all the difference.“It would be helpful if investors provided more specificity on how each investor wants mortgage servicers to behave following a major storm or disaster,” Jaffa  said. “Some investors have procedures in place while processes can remain unclear for others. Establishing clear guidelines and continuously updating them following a major storm or disaster will alleviate some of the challenges when managing affected properties.”The Tech Factor“Technology needs to help reduce risk for servicers, as well as their borrowers and investors,” Mason said. “Consider implementing technologies that can seamlessly take the customer from onboarding through each phase of servicing, including loss mitigation—with no gaps. Such capabilities are valuable for servicing in general but even more important when evaluating an uncontrollable event such as a natural disaster.”According to Mason, disasters, tragic as they are, can be a time for advancement.“The bottom line is that natural disasters do not need to create workflow disasters—nor should they,” she said. “They offer a prime opportunity for servicers to enhance customer service and take a giant technological leap forward. The key is to capitalize on technologies emerging out of digital disruption to manage disaster recovery and win customer allegiance at the same time. By letting automation handle the ups and downs of disaster mitigation, as well as its complexities, servicers can create eternal customer loyalty.”New technology is already making disaster response easier, as servicers are able to react faster.“Coupled with improvements in technology like weather-mapping and geo-fencing, clients have the ability to be more targeted in their disaster responses,” said Alan Jaffa.Of course, the benefits of advancing tech are not just limited to disaster prep and recovery.Kerry Medel, Client Relationship and Operations Manager for Brookstone Management’s Property Preservation Division, notes how new tech can impact not only costs, but cut time in the QA process.“Companies today are constantly reevaluating their field services QA processes in the quest to not only reduce timelines but also their exposure by exploring new avenues to integrate automation into their QA procedures,” she said.“The most successful QA model will not be built solely on the paragon of technology,” she continued. “It will consist of a coalescence of technological exploitation, alongside team members with the most creative, knowledgeable, and analytical minds, who live among the patterns, embracing the errors much more than the successes—it will be a fine balance between man and machine.”“It is critical that we continue to perfect processes and technology to address these risks as they arise,” Mosely said. “By continuously improving processes, developing our employees, and improving technology, we are able to make our business more efficient and, in turn, be prepared for the future.” Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, News, Print Features Share Save Sign up for DS News Daily About Author: Seth Welbornlast_img read more

Highland’s Farming News – Thursday 5th January

first_imgNewsPlayback Previous articleGardai launch investigation following overnight burglary in Convoy PharmacyNext articleNew look Derry side to start against Armagh admin By admin – January 5, 2017 NPHET ‘positive’ on easing restrictions – Donnelly Highland’s Farming News – Thursday 5th January Twitter Google+ Facebook Guidelines for reopening of hospitality sector published Facebook LUH system challenged by however, work to reduce risk to patients ongoing – Dr Hamilton Google+center_img Calls for maternity restrictions to be lifted at LUH RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Pinterest WhatsApp Twitter Three factors driving Donegal housing market – Robinson Pinterest A 15 Minute Programme presented by Chris Ashmore every Thursday at 7.05pm highlighting all that’s happening in the farming community.Audio Playerhttp://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/01/Farming16.mp300:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume. Nine Til Noon Show – Listen back to Wednesday’s Programme WhatsApplast_img read more

HSE defends Lifford Hospital closure proposal

first_img By News Highland – February 20, 2012 Facebook Newsx Adverts Twitter Previous articleHijacked taxi burned out in DraperstownNext articleLabour Cllr Frank McBrearty says he will quit party if Lifford hospital closes News Highland The HSE is defending the proposal to close Lifford Community Hospital, saying the level of staff cuts being imposed on the service in Donegal locally means the hospital is no longer sustainable.Staff and patients are expressing dismay at the proposal.Dr Martin Coyne is a GP and medical officer at Lifford Hospital, he says the decision is a devastating blow for all concerned………….[podcast]http://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/coyne1pm.mp3[/podcast]John Hayes is the HSE Area Manager for Donegal.Speaking to Greg Hughes on the Shaun Doherty Show today, he said while efficiencies have been secured across all services in Donegal, budget cuts and staffing constraints men difficult decisions have to be taken……….[podcast]http://www.highlandradio.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/hayes1pm.mp3[/podcast] 75 positive cases of Covid confirmed in North Pinterest Further drop in people receiving PUP in Donegal 365 additional cases of Covid-19 in Republic Gardai continue to investigate Kilmacrennan fire HSE defends Lifford Hospital closure proposalcenter_img Facebook WhatsApp Main Evening News, Sport and Obituaries Tuesday May 25th RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Google+ Man arrested on suspicion of drugs and criminal property offences in Derry WhatsApp Google+ Twitter Pinterestlast_img read more

Woman charged with son’s assault says he deserved it

first_img By News Highland – January 4, 2012 Woman charged with son’s assault says he deserved it Main Evening News, Sport and Obituaries Tuesday May 25th Pinterest 75 positive cases of Covid confirmed in North Man arrested on suspicion of drugs and criminal property offences in Derry Previous articleStrabane man with terminal cancer overwhelmed by fundraising responseNext articleHundreds still without power as storm clean up continues News Highland Facebook RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR 365 additional cases of Covid-19 in Republic Pinterest Twittercenter_img Google+ A brother and sister have been remanded in custody after they appeared at Derry Magistrate’s Court charged with assaulting the woman’s son.22-year-old Steven Smith, from Bradley’s Park, Derry is charged with causing grievous bodily harm to his 18-year-old nephew on New Year’s Day during the incident in St. Eithne’s Park in the city.The court was told that 37-year-old Tracey Smith, from Glenview Street, Derry shouted “he deserved it” after her son was alleged beaten unconscious and bitten by his uncle.The court was told that both defendants were alleged to have gone to the 18-year-old’s home to confront him about why he had not spent New Year with them.Witnesses were said to have told police that Steven Smith allegedly punched, head butted and bit his nephew, who then fell unconscious on to the kitchen floor.The teenager was later treated in hospital for bite lacerations to his ear and cheek.A police officer told the court the actions of the two defendants were fuelled by drugs and alcohol, and she said the youth’s mother had made no attempt to protect her son.Tracey Smith was also charged with burglary and assaulting a police officer. Her brother Steven Smith is also charged with burglary.District judge Barney McElholm, described the details of the case as “absolutely disgraceful”.Both defendants were remanded in custody and will appear again later this month. Newsx Adverts WhatsApp WhatsApp Facebook Twitter Further drop in people receiving PUP in Donegal Gardai continue to investigate Kilmacrennan fire Google+last_img read more

Red Kettle Campaign successful

first_img Remember America’s heroes on Memorial Day Red Kettle Campaign successful Book Nook to reopen Published 11:00 pm Tuesday, January 8, 2013 Email the author Print Article In 2011, the Pike County Salvation Army’s Red Kettle Campaign raised $25,175.“This year, we topped that by $8,000 with $33,200,” May said. “It was a very good year for our Red Kettle Campaign.”May attributed the success of the Red Kettle Campaign to dedicated volunteers, the generosity of people from all walks of life and the additional kettle site in Luverne. Pike County Sheriff’s Office offering community child ID kits Troy falls to No. 13 Clemson The Pike County Salvation Army has a strong presence in the county and also in the three other counties that it serves, Bullock, Barbour and Crenshaw.The Salvation Army also has strong support in those counties and that was evident during its holiday Red Kettle Campaign, which is its major annual fundraiser.“This year was the best ever for our Red Kettle Campaign,” said Kim May, Pike County Salvation Army director. “With the economy the way it is, people were still very generous.” The Penny Hoarder Issues “Urgent” Alert: 6 Companies… Skip Latest Stories By Jaine Treadwell Around the WebMd: Do This Immediately if You Have Diabetes (Watch)Blood Sugar BlasterIf You Have Ringing Ears Do This Immediately (Ends Tinnitus)Healthier LivingHave an Enlarged Prostate? Urologist Reveals: Do This Immediately (Watch)Healthier LivingWomen Only: Stretch This Muscle to Stop Bladder Leakage (Watch)Healthier LivingRemoving Moles & Skin Tags Has Never Been This EasyEssential HealthMost 10 Rarest Skins for FortniteTCGThe content you see here is paid for by the advertiser or content provider whose link you click on, and is recommended to you by Revcontent. As the leading platform for native advertising and content recommendation, Revcontent uses interest based targeting to select content that we think will be of particular interest to you. We encourage you to view your opt out options in Revcontent’s Privacy PolicyWant your content to appear on sites like this?Increase Your Engagement Now!Want to report this publisher’s content as misinformation?Submit a ReportGot it, thanks!Remove Content Link?Please choose a reason below:Fake NewsMisleadingNot InterestedOffensiveRepetitiveSubmitCancel Sponsored Content Donna McLaney, Red Kettle coordinator, said the efforts to extend the fundraising campaign to Eufaula were not forthcoming but the Salvation Army did get a foot in the door and the outlook for 2013 is promising.“We appreciate all of those who volunteered during the holidays as bell ringers and the businesses that allowed us to ring at their locations — Piggly Wiggly, Food World, Wal-Mart, Walgreen’s and Dollar Tree in Troy; Piggly Wiggly in Brundidge and Piggly Wiggly and Food Depot in Luverne,” McLaney said. “Jim Wadowick and Gene Omasta played the accordions at the Dollar Tree and people came out and sang with them. That was really special. Like Christmas should be.”May said sales have been good at the Salvation Army Thrift Store and food and toy donations were up during the Christmas season.The Salvation Army provided snacks and drinks for those who worked the disaster sites following the Christmas Day tornadoes that hit Pike County and will begin assistance to the victims this month. Plans underway for historic Pike County celebration You Might Like Pike Piddlers storytelling festival tickets available When the weather turns cold and dreary and the wind whips around every corner, then it’s storytelling time. And, there’s… read more By The Penny Hoarder “The Pike County Salvation Army will offer ServSafe’s Introduction to Disaster Training from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 19 at the Colley Senior Complex on Elm Street,” May said. “The introductory course will include first responder and safety training.“Anyone who is interested in being a member of the Pike County Salvation Army Disaster Team and would like to take the training course is asked to call 334-808-1069.Pre-registration is required.last_img read more

USU Men’s Basketball Set To Compete At MGM Resorts Main Event

first_img Brad James June 14, 2018 /Sports News – Local USU Men’s Basketball Set To Compete At MGM Resorts Main Event Tags: Arizona State/MGM Resorts Main Event/Mississippi State/Saint Mary’s/T-Mobile Arena/USU Men’s Basketball Written by FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailLOGAN, Utah-Per information released Thursday, the Utah State men’s basketball team will compete against Saint Mary’s in the opening game of the MGM Resorts Main Event in Las Vegas at T-Mobile Arena November 19.The Aggies and Gaels will be joined by Arizona State and Mississippi State with championship and consolation games slated to be played November 21.The MGM Resorts Main Event tournament is in its fifth year of existence and previous winners include UNLV, Valparaiso, Creighton and Oklahoma State.For the third consecutive year, a team from Utah will be in this tournament as BYU lost in the championship game in 2016 and Utah fell in the championship game in 2017.This tournament will also feature a pair of home games for the Aggies in the weeks leading up to this event although the rest of the teams to participate have yet to be announced.last_img read more

EPA to Provide Relief for Certain Marine Diesel Engines

first_imgThe Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is proposing to amend the national marine diesel engine program to provide relief to boat builders and manufacturers of lightweight and high-power marine diesel engines that are used in high-speed commercial vessels such as lobster fishing boats and pilot boats.“This proposal will provide boat builders the flexibility they need to meet EPA standards while they continue to manufacture products that are critical to marine industries,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler.  “This action reflects our mindset that environmental progress is best achieved by working with states and the regulated community to advance sound and attainable regulatory solutions.”“This proposed rule is very important for both our bar pilots and our port in Savannah,” said Congressman Earl L. “Buddy” Carter (GA-01). “The current standards have made it impossible for the bar pilots to purchase any new vessels because there simply is not a single manufacturer that can meet the requirements. The new guidance will give the pilots the ability to purchase new vessels, so they are able to continue to do their important job while ensuring there won’t be any disruptions to the shipping traffic or other unnecessary delays at the port. I thank the EPA for working with us to correct the current flawed guidance to ensure the growth at our port and in our region isn’t negatively impacted by standards that are impossible to reach.”“Due to the unique design of Maine lobster boats, at this time there are not Tier 4-compliant diesel engines available on the market that can safely fit in these types of vessels. This delay in the implementation of the Tier 4 emission standards for commercial lobster-style boats should provide engine manufacturers time to design and certify engines that will both comply with Tier 4 emission standards and work safely and efficiently in these boats. It also prevents lobstermen from being burdened by requirements that are impossible to meet with the currently available technology,” said U.S. Senators Susan Collins and Angus King and U.S. Representatives Chellie Pingree and Jared Golden in a joint statement.  “We are pleased to have worked together with the EPA to find a commonsense solution that supports Maine boat builders and lobstermen.”EPA’s proposal will help boat builders whose production capabilities have been impacted by a lack of certified engines available with the desired size and power characteristics. The proposal will provide additional lead time to meet the agency’s Tier 4 standards for qualifying engines and vessels and includes a new waiver process, which would allow for continued installation of Tier 3 engines for certain vessels if suitable Tier 4 engines continue to be unavailable. The proposal also includes changes to streamline the engine certification process to promote certification of engines with high power density.This rule also includes a proposed technical correction to the national marine diesel fuel program. This change will clarify that fuel manufacturers and distributors may sell distillate diesel fuel that meets the 2020 global sulfur standard adopted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). The proposed correction will help U.S. fuel manufacturers and distributors to meet the IMO standard on time and without creating additional burdens for the industry.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more

IS IT TRUE JULY 26, 2017

first_imgIS IT TRUE that the Evansville City Councilwoman from the Third Ward, Anna Hargis has announced her resignation from the City Council?…the Evansville City Council will now be without a Certified Public Accountant for the first time since former Councilman John Friend decided not to seek re-election?…competent financial analysis is something the Evansville City Council does not seem to listen to with or without a CPA on the dais so Councilwoman Hargis may have been wasting her talent on the tax and spend cast of elected officials anyway?…Hargis will be moving on to bigger and better things like managing other people’s money at Merrill Lynch as a financial advisor?…that sort of takes advantage of the time spent on the City Council where all that happens is taking money from one person and giving it to others in one form or another?…at least the role of financial advisor has a profit motive involved and the accountability of customer disappointment if the profits are not realized?…we certainly wish the University of Evansville graduate a long and successful career as a financial advisor and hope to God that Wayne Parke and the Vanderburgh County Republican Party appoints someone who has the brains to do analysis and the chutzpah to keep the tax and spend club known as the Evansville City Council from driving the city into bankruptcy?IS IT TRUE that the founding general manager of the downtown Doubletree Hotel has tendered his resignation but has not yet disclosed where he will be going?…this is not a sign of any trouble in paradise as start-up general managers and plain old every day general managers are cut from a different cloth?…we do understand by virtue of a text message from Mole #12 that there was some trouble in paradise last Saturday night at the Doubletree when 3 guests were trapped in an elevator on the fourth floor and had to be extricated because the elevator which had lost its ability to stop where it was supposed to?…we have gotten several reports of growing pains over the course of the last 5 months since the Doubletree opened?…we are confident with the start-up general manager leaving town that everything at the downtown Evansville Doubletree will be utopian and free unicorn rides will be available on the proposed 10th floor rooftop martini bar?IS IT TRUE that Evansville’s Olympic Gold Medalist Lilly King has made news again?…the former Reitz Lady Panther has broken the world record in the 100 meter backstroke at the World Championships in elegant form as she did last summer at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics?…the City County Observer and all of Evansville is very proud of what this likable young lady has accomplished in the pool?IS IT TRUE that Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell and President Donald Trump finally got a win yesterday with the passage of the bill that will allow discussions on the floor of the Senate regarding what to do about the Affordable Care Act (ACA), also known in some circles as the Unaffordable Care Act for its over 100% rise in insurance premiums, sky high deductibles and oppressive co-payments?…people have not forgotten that the ACA was born in deceptions like “if you like your doctor you can keep your doctor”, “If you like your plan you can keep your plan”, and “the average family will be saving $2,500 per year if we (Democrats) pass the ACA?…the chickens of those deceptions have come home to roost and are not appreciated at all outside of a small group with pre-existing conditions and some people who are getting a free ride?…it is now up to all of the members of congress to own up to the problems created by this partisan monstrosity and work together to repair whatever the heck the ACA actually turned out to be?Todays READERS POLL question is: Do you feel that former 3rd Ward Councilwoman Anna Hargis-CPA did a credible job for the taxpayers of Evansville?Please take time and read our newest feature articles entitled “LAW ENFORCEMENT, READERS POLL, BIRTHDAYS, HOT JOBS” and “LOCAL SPORTS” posted in our sections. You now are able to subscribe to get the CCO daily.If you would like to advertise in the CCO please contact us City-County [email protected]’S FOOTNOTE:  Any comments posted in this column do not represent the views or opinions of our advertisers.FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailSharelast_img read more


first_imgThe cost of utilities such as energy and fuel, and their potential impact upon pricing, will be the key challenge for our supply base and ourselves in the year ahead. This has only begun to emerge as a major issue over the past few months but will inevitably snowball.Other challenges will include decision-making in relation to the amount of shelf-space given to functional foods and other products marketed as healthy, both ‘soft’ health (such as wholegrain and organic) and ‘hard’ health products (fortified goods, such as Omega 3).We will be re-launching own-brand morning goods in the New Year, focusing upon health and clean ingredients labels. We will also focus on convenience. For example, we are looking at single-packed items that can be put into a lunchbox and re-sealable products. We’re trying to adapt to how people are living, and the rising number of single-occupied homes will obviously have an impact on how people eat.Pre-packed cakes will be an interesting area, as the market continues to polarise between ‘cheapest on display’ products and, at the other end of the market, an emphasis upon ‘better’ ingredients such as free-range eggs and the removal of hydrogenated vegetable oils. Consumers are looking closely at food labels now and they’re looking beyond fat and sugar.Interest in speciality breads continues. We’ve seen the La Brea bread brand come into the market last year – that’s been interesting and it’s driving premiumisation. Currently, Waitrose has offered a speciality range, where representation of Anglicised ranges such as Cranks and Duchy Originals has been high and this has worked well for us. Now, there is room to move further into Mediterranean breads, developing both continental and British traditional areas because we have customers to which both appeal.last_img read more

Cuomo Slams CDC’s Reversal On COVID-19 Testing Guidance: ‘It Makes No Sense’

first_imgImage by Darren McGee / Office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo.ALBANY — Wednesday marked the 179th day since the Coronavirus arrived in New York and Governor Andrew Cuomo says the data continues to trend in the right direction statewide.Across New York, 71,189 COVID-19 tests were conducted Tuesday with 566 coming back positive — an infection rate of .79%. It was the 19th straight day of an infection rate less than 1%. The governor said three New Yorkers died Tuesday and 492 New Yorkers remain hospitalized with the virus.“Situation was good all across the state, but we still have a caution flag in Western New York, which was at 1.4%,” Gov. Cuomo said. “It’s better today than where it was, but not where it should be.”The governor questioned the CDC’s new guidelines which say that if someone is in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, they don’t need to get tested. “The CDC reversed their guidance, saying that ‘if you’re in close contact with someone who has COVID you don’t need a test,” Gov. Cuomo said. “I’ve spoken with medical experts, this makes no sense. It’s the president’s policy of denying the problem.The CDC changed the recommendations on its website Monday in a surprise move.The site now says: “If you have been in close contact (within 6 feet) of a person with a COVID-19 infection for at least 15 minutes but do not have symptoms, you do not necessarily need a test unless you are a vulnerable individual or your health care provider or State or local public health officials recommend you take one.”“Shame on the people of the CDC,” Gov. Cuomo said. “This will not look well in the scope of the history. What plausible rationale would say, ‘if you’re in close contact with a person who has COVID, you don’t need a test.’”“This is indefensible from a public health standpoint,” said New York State Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker. “It makes no sense. I’ve talked to CDC scientists and they say this is all political.”Dr. Leana Wen, an emergency physician and public health professor at George Washington University, agrees with Dr. Zucker, telling CNN that the changes make no sense.“These are exactly the people who should be tested … I’m concerned that these recommendations suggest someone who has had substantial exposure to a person with Covid-19 now doesn’t need to get tested,” Dr. Wen said.The governor was also critical of President Donald Trump’s nomination of Chad Wolf, acting Homeland Security Secretary, to take over the role on a more permanent basis. Gov. Cuomo blamed Wolf for his role with the Trusted Traveler Program dispute with the federal government, spurred by the Green Light Law in New York state.The governor called Wolf a political operative and said he isn’t qualified for the position. He previously called on the Department of Justice to investigate Homeland Security over the incident. Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)last_img read more