Last day to register to vote for August primaries. If you’re interested in voting in the August 1 primaries, you must be registered to vote by today. You can register online here. Advance voting by mail begins July 12.Shawnee Mission teacher contract negotiations session canceled. The Shawnee Mission School District and representatives of the local National Education Association chapter have postponed the contract negotiations session scheduled for Wednesday. Interim Superintendent Kenny Southwick said both teams believed it would be beneficial to hear the oral arguments in the supreme court case on K-12 funding before discussion compensation.SM East swimmers make NISCA All-American list. The relay team that set a new state record in the 400 freestyle relay this spring has been honored by the The National Interscholastic Swim Coaches Association. SM East swimmers Evan Root, Ian Longan, Aidan Holbrook and Hayden Linscott were named to NISCA’s All-American list.Johnson County Libraries will be open as cooling centers during heat wave. The extreme heat that has settled over the area is prompting county health officials to encourage residents to take precautions, including drinking more fluids, staying indoors as much as possible, and avoiding leaving kids and pets alone inside vehicles “even for a few minutes.” All branches of the Johnson County Library will be open during normal business hours as cooling centers for people who need shelter from the heat.
ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Alan JacksonRare indeed is the business that doesn’t desire growth. Staying status quo too often leads to stagnation, and in today’s intensely competitive marketplace, stagnation can spell demise for financial institutions. Driving growth, however, is particularly challenging for FIs these days, especially if the organization’s decision-makers are unsure how to best leverage technology to fuel growth.Bank Director’s 2014 Growth Strategy Survey sheds some light on how banks are already using technology to drive profitability – and what more they need to do. Among the survey’s most notable findings are:The majority (52 percent) crave information and understanding of business intelligence and analytics, even though 40 percent are already using data to drive growth.Even though 87 percent currently offer mobile banking, and 12 percent more plan to implement it, more than half of respondents are concerned about how their bank will keep pace with the evolution of mobile banking.More than one-third said they currently use or intend to use omni-channel banking, but nearly half say they want to understand omni-channel strategies better.Half said their core processor lagged in responding to innovations, and 25 percent said their IT staff doesn’t have the resources needed to meet current operating demands and help drive growth. continue reading »
A comparison of two US national surveys points to an increase in serious psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic
While a US national survey from 2018 showed a 3.9% prevalence of serious psychological distress, national data from 2020 revealed a prevalence more than three times as large at 13.6%. This finding was recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association.Numerous studies have reported on the mental health consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic, suggesting an increased prevalence of loneliness and depression. As researchers Emma E. McGinty and her team express, the novel coronavirus brought with it numerous psychological stressors, including, “loneliness stemming from social isolation, fear of contracting the disease, economic strain, and uncertainty about the future.”McGinty and associates compared national data from two surveys taken two years apart to examine how the mental health of US citizens may have changed as a result of the pandemic. LinkedIn Share on Twitter Share Pinterest Share on Facebook Between April 7 and April 13, 2020, a total of 1,468 US adults completed the Kessler 6 Psychological Distress scale to assess the prevalence of symptoms of serious psychological distress. This data was part of the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Civic Life and Public Health Survey which was designed to be representative of the US population.Researchers then compared this data to the 2018 National Health Interview Survey which was also nationally representative and included 25,417 adults. Participants had completed an identical measure of distress — the Kessler 6 scale.While in 2018, only 3.9% of respondents showed symptoms of severe psychological distress (a score of 13 or higher on the Kessler 6 scale), in April 2020, this number was 13.6%. As the authors suggest, this jump in distress symptoms is concerning when it comes to the future mental health of Americans. “The measure of serious psychological distress derived from the Kessler 6 scale has been shown to accurately predict serious mental illness, suggesting acute distress during COVID-19 may transfer to longer-term psychiatric disorders,” the researchers say.The 2020 survey showed that young adults aged 18-29, Hispanic adults, and those with a household income below $35,000 a year were most likely to experience distress. Those who were the least likely to report serious distress were adults over 55 years old.Interestingly, while 13.8% of 2020 respondents indicated that they felt lonely either often or always, a national survey on loneliness conducted in April and May 2018 reported a prevalence that was only slightly higher, with 11% feeling lonely often or always. McGinty and colleagues, therefore, propose that “other factors may be driving psychological distress during the COVID-19 pandemic.”The authors address the limitation that sampling and recruitment methods differed between the two surveys and, therefore, selection bias may have occurred. Still, both surveys were designed to be nationally representative of US adults.The study, “Psychological Distress and Loneliness Reported by US Adults in 2018 and April 2020”, was authored by Emma E. McGinty, Rachel Presskreischer, Hahrie Han, and Colleen L. Barry. Email
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The Newport Beach City Council has voted unanimously to approve a $1.6 million contract with Innovative Construction Solutions (ICS) for removal of 8.500 cubic yards of material from the saltwater marsh in West Newport, also known as the Semeniuk Slough.The California Department of Transportation has agreed to contribute $500,000 to the dredging project, while the city will cover the remainder of the cost, the Los Angeles Times reports.The material at the bottom of the waterway is more silt and mud than sand, so it cannot be used to replenish local beaches.Instead, crews will have to dry it out and take it to a landfill, which drives up the cost of the project, according to Dave Webb, Public Works Director.It is expected that the dredging operations will start in December and last through the spring.The main goal of this cleanup scheme is to improve tidal flow and promote a healthier environment in the water.[mappress mapid=”23180″]
SC&RA presents testimony before US Labor Department to support proposed cranes and derricks safety rule
SC&RA members regularly tackle some of the most daunting and dangerous challenges covered by the proposed cranes and derricks standard under consideration today,” said Dandrea. “Our association has long been an enthusiastic supporter of efforts to update this important standard. It has not been revised since 1971 and no longer affords the protection workers in our industry need-and deserve.”Dandrea shared panel time with Doug Williams, president of Buckner Cranes, Graham, N.C., who addressed many of the specific priorities within the proposed standard, based upon practical, day-to-day considerations of the crane and rigging industry. Williams served as SC&RA’s official representative on a 23-member panel of experts from all facets of the industry appointed by OSHA in July 2003 to develop a recommended proposal for the standard. OSHA instructed these members of the Cranes and Derricks Negotiated Rulemaking Advisory Committee, C-DAC, to negotiate all aspects of a new standard within one year. C-DAC met nearly every month to accomplish that significant task.Dandrea noted that Williams worked cooperatively, clearly and, in good faith, while representing SC&RA’s goals and viewpoints throughout the negotiations that resulted in a final consensus. Over four and a half years later, SC&RA still awaits rules that will protect workers throughout the nation, he said.”In the meantime, our industry has been under attack, largely because of several high-profile incidents involving tower cranes last year,” said Dandrea. “We believe provisions agreed to by C-DAC could have prevented fatalities, injuries and property damage.”Dandrea commended OSHA for drafting the proposed standard for expanding and improving safety procedures in a number of significant areas, including tower cranes, derricks, wire rope, hoisting personnel, multiple crane lifts, overhead cranes and gantries, and design reconstruction and testing. He also cited the introduction of new protections in areas not addressed by the existing standard, including qualifications for operators and signalpersons, inspection criteria, fall protection, power-line safety, ground conditions, authority to stop operations, and operational aids.Dandrea countered testimony from other groups opposing operator certification even though that requirement would impose an additional expense for many SC&RA member companies. “Our members share the conviction that training and certification not be considered an additional cost but rather an investment in safety and our workforce,” he said.He also singled out the importance of provisions in the proposed standard that impose more stringent requirements when working around power lines, noting that power-line contact continues to be the number one killer in the industry.”The proposed standard clearly and concisely combines all the information companies need to ensure crane and derrick safety,” said Dandrea. “Unlike the existing standard, it eliminates the need to scramble for additional references from other sources.”Including all the information in a single, comprehensive volume would be particularly attractive to smaller companies that lack the staff dedicated to researching, cataloging and interpreting multiple sources, according to Dandrea. Similarly, the recent trend of local and state jurisdictions cobbling together their own guidelines because of the lack of viable federal standards unnecessarily complicates compliance for those working in multiple jurisdictions, he warned.”We see no reason why a hodgepodge of safety requirements should leave workers in one state more susceptible to worksite injury, or even death, than those in another,” said Dandrea.He emphasised that clear, concise safety regulations were especially important as the U.S. embarks on an ambitious economic plan which will depend on cranes and derricks in the lifting and shifting of components in building and repairing roads, bridges, the electrical grid and the wind- and solar-generated power sources that will increasingly feed into that grid.Transcripts of SC&RA representatives’ testimony may be viewed online at www.scranet.org/pressreleases.SC&RA is an international trade association of more than 1,300 members from 43 nations. Members are involved in specialised transportation, machinery moving and erecting, industrial maintenance, millwrighting and crane and rigging operations, manufacturing and rental. SC&RA helps members run more efficient and safer businesses by monitoring and affecting pending legislation and regulatory policies at the state and national levels; researching and reporting on safety concerns and best business practices, and providing four yearly forums where these and other relevant member issues can be advanced.
INTRO: Richard Hope reports on a cheap and simple developmentAN ECONOMICAL way of mechanising the renewal of track by lifting sections up to 270m long straight out of the ballast has been devised by Jarvis, which currently owns and operates around 55% of all on-track plant in the UK.Jarvis commissioned in 2000 a fully automated Track Renewal Train acquired from Harsco Track Technologies in the USA. Like similar machines widely used in continental Europe, the Harsco TRT replaces rails and sleepers in the track on which it is running. However, it is heavily engaged on the West Coast main line upgrade.Jarvis has now deployed the much simpler and cheaper Slinger TRT. Like the twin-jib relaying machines introduced by British Rail in the 1960s to lift out or place an 18·3m standard track panel, Slinger works off the adjacent track. Whereas this would normally be used to pass traffic in both directions on railways elsewhere, British tracks are so close together that a double-track line is normally closed whenever relaying takes place.The first version, Slinger 1, was introduced in July 2002 primarily to avoid manual handling of steel sleepers, which are now used by Network Rail in large numbers on secondary routes. The bodies of surplus curtain-sided vans were replaced by a pair of swivelling post and cantilever-beam hoists mounted on one side of the wagon. Each Slinger 1 hoist can lift 3·5 tonnes, and a rake of wagons is marshalled with a generator van at one end.Instead of dropping bundles of steel sleepers by the lineside during an earlier possession and then placing them in position manually on the scarified ballast bed, the sleepers are now pre-loaded in pallets on the Slinger wagons. They are then hooked individually to a spreader beam and placed accurately in their final position. The third version, Slinger 3, is the track renewal train. Its efficiency was demonstrated at Formby during a four-day blockade in February where it was used to replace 6·9track-km on the Merseyrail route to Southport electrified at 750V DC third rail.Slinger 3 consists of 12 wagons plus a generator at each end. With 24 synchronised hoists, 270m of old track including rails and sleepers – provided their fastenings hold – can be picked up in a single lift. The old track is placed on the wagon decks, and the process is repeated until up to 1080m is stacked four-high. Slinger 3 unloads the old track on to an adjacent stretch of the same line for cropping into shorter lengths and subsequent removal on conventional wagons. Trackbed preparation is carried out by another Jarvis innovation. Mole can excavate up to 1000 tonne/h of fouled ballast and dump it via conveyors into wagons standing on the adjacent track. The machine then prepares a bed for the new sleepers using laser-levelling techniques. Meanwhile, Slinger 3 returns to the other end of the site to pick up from loaded wagons sufficient concrete sleepers for 270m of new track. It then places them on the prepared trackbed at the correct line and spacing, as described for steel sleepers. Finally, Slinger collects the new rails and places them on the sleepers ready for welding. All lifts and drops are carried out by one operator using radio control of all the hoists. However, an 18·3m track panel with concrete sleepers weighs 11 tonnes – too much in terms of the overturning moment on the wagons. The innovation that made Slinger 3 possible was a retractable leg on the outer end of each beam, which is lowered on to the ballast on the far side of the track being lifted. Slinger 3 is fitted with 6 tonne hoists, and with props in place a pair of hoists can safely lift 12 tonnes.When Slinger is working on canted track, it is necessary to ensure that the beams on which the hoists run are level. This is achieved by jacking up the structure carrying the post and beam, which is hinged to the wagon. The outer props have a ball-jointed elephant’s foot that is lowered manually to make contact with the ground before a track panel is lifted.Slinger and Mole cost substantially less than the high-output Track Renewal Train. Being much simpler to build and operate, Jarvis hopes that they will also prove to be more reliable. A 15-wagon version able to lift 320m of track is planned.CAPTION: The 24 synchronised 6 tonne hoists on Slinger 3 can remove 270m of old track – including rails and sleepers – in a single lift CAPTION: To ensure that the hoists run level, the beams are hinged to the wagon and the support posts are carried on ball-jointed feet
1917, the critically acclaimed, multi-award-winning action spectacle, and Academy Award winner for Best Cinematography arrives on Digital Download 4th May, 2020 and on 4K Ultra HD, Blu- ray and DVD 18th May 2020 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.The universally acclaimed film combines ground-breaking film making, memorable performances, and an unforgettable insight into the human experience against the shattering background of war.In 1917 at the height of the First World War, two young British soldiers, Schofield (George MacKay) and Blake (Dean-Charles Chapman) are given a seemingly impossible mission. In a race against time, they must cross enemy territory and deliver a message that will stop a deadly attack on hundreds of soldiers—Blake’s own brother among them.1917 comes to Digital Download, 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray and DVD with bonus content showcasing the incredible craft and artistry behind the immersive feature, including a detailed look into the production design, how the film engineered a one shot, 360-degree format and interviews with the cast and crew.BONUS FEATURES ON DVD: Feature Commentary with Director/Co-Writer Sam Mendes Feature Commentary with Director of Photography Roger Deakins The Weight of the World: Sam Mendes – Academy Award winner Sam Mendes discusses his personal connection to World War 1Allied Forces: Making 1917 – Learn how the one shot, 360-degree format was executed and the pivotal role Academy Award winner Roger Deakins served in bringing Sam Mendes’ vision to life• The Music of 1917 – Composer Thomas Newman and filmmakers discuss the important role of the Academy Awardnominated scoreBONUS FEATURES ON 4K ULTRA HD & BLU-RAY, INCLUDING TWO HD EXCLUSIVES:Same as on DVD, plusIn The Trenches – Go behind the scenes with the cast of 1917Recreating History – Filmmakers offer a detailed look at the production design challenges of recreating the First World War1917 will be available on 4K Ultra HD combo pack, which includes 4K Ultra HD & Blu-ray
Share Tweet LocalNews New Calypso tent emerges by: – January 8, 2014 Sharing is caring! 69 Views 3 comments Share Share Peter Prosper (Neo-Xpression photo)A third Calypso tent has been born in Dominica and will be launched next week. The new tent named ‘Renegades’ is the brain child of Peter Prosper, Narrin ‘Trendsetter’ Murphy, Dexter ‘Derose’ Peltier and Marlon Giraudel, all former members of the Showdown Mas Camp calypso tent. Renegades will be held on the grounds of the Newtown Primary School every Thursday from 8pm. The “first and only” Serenade Band will provide musical accompaniment for the calypsonians.Peter Prosper told Dominica Vibes on Wednesday, January 8, 2014 that the idea for the tent came about because they were unsatisfied with operations of Mas Camp’s management.“We were once part of Mas Camp and we were not happy as to how things were going on so after that New York show we decided let’s do our own thing, we decided to break away and call ourselves Renegades”.So far fourteen “of the humorous type, the up-tempo type” calypsonians have expressed interest in joining the new tent and could sign contracts next week.Prosper also emphasized that the Renegades “have no problem with other tents”. “We have spoken to Stardom [Tent] already, we will be performing at Stardom and a few of stardom calypsonians will be performing at our tent so it’s a nice unity vibes no friction between tents”.Some of the calypsonians down to perform at Renegades includes the Mighty Acre, Picklock, Insighter, Mask Eruption, Energizer, Sugar S and Sour Sour among others. He said their exciting line-up of new calypsos by seasoned performers could attract a large crowd, signaling their appreciation for the mixture of political lyrics and comedy to the art form.Of the three founding members, only Trendsetter has released his song dubbed ‘Part Payment’.Prosper’s ‘I have Alice in the Palace’ will be released on Friday, January 11, 2014, while Derose will release ‘Dr. Pepper’ sometime later.The tent is expected to move to Davo’s bar in Roseau, Portsmouth, Grand Fond and Scotts Head. “I expect our tent to be very lively and humorous, a Thursday night with a difference, our tent will be something when you come there it will be a carnival party kind of atmosphere,” Prosper noted.Dominica Vibes News