Stormy Daniels to visit Oxford Union

first_imgStormy Daniels, the adult film star who alleges she was paid “hush money”, by Donald Trump is coming to the Oxford Union on the 15th November.Daniels, whose accusations were confirmed when President Trump’s personal lawyer said he paid Ms. Daniels “at the direction of the candidate”, and “for the principal purpose of influencing the election”, will be speaking on how “stigmatizing the adult industry and people who work in it is bad for society” according to the Union’s Term Card.Union President Stephen Horvath told Cherwell “For some, Stormy Daniels is a feminist icon for unashamedly standing up to President Trump; to others, she is merely an opportunist seeking fame.“No matter your stance, it is undeniable that Stormy Daniels has challenged the President in a prominent and public way, and we are looking forward to hearing that story.”Daniels’ talk at the Union is entitled “Sex, Guns & Other Fluff:  How Porn Can Set You Free”, and will reportedly focus on the importance of destigmatising the adult entertainment industry.Having appeared on talk shows ranging from Jimmy Kimmel to Fox and Friends as well as playing herself in a cameo on Saturday Night Live, Daniels’s book “Full Disclosure” which details her alleged encounters with President Trump was released earlier this year.The talk will be held at the Oxford Union 5PM on Wednesday 15th November.last_img read more

Legal Considerations For Startups Presented By Martin Law Group

first_imgFacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmailShare Legal Considerations for StartupsPresented By The Martin IP Law Group, P.C.When:  March 15, 2017  10:00 – 11:00 a.m.Where: Perry County Public LibraryTell St & Dauby Ln, Tell City, IN  47586Cost: FREEPresentation Insight:Startups are the lifeblood of our economy – creating change, jobs, new products, dreams, and disruption.  The entrepreneurs behind these startups put their blood, sweat, and tears into the venture to bring their ideas to life.  But, unfortunately, half of all startups fail in the first four years of existence.  One way to protect yourself from becoming such a statistic is to make sure you take the proper steps to comply with the law in setting up your business.  Another way is to timely file for protection of your valuable intellectual property (cover your assets).This presentation is designed for entrepreneurs who are looking to start a company as well as those in the process of building one.  Come see exactly what you need to do to get your business up and running and protect your valuable intellectual property rights.Martin IP Law Group will be partnering with An Island, LLC. An Island LLC is a Parent and Flagship company located in Indiana, the USA which is mainly focusing on High end IT strategy and compliance to large corporate companies. Consulting practices include implementation of ERP applications like SAP, Sox Compliance, Business Process Reengineering, etc.Their expertise includes cloud computing, project management, project implementation, business process automation, business continuity, training, and managing data centers.EDITORS FOOTNOTES:  Martin IP Law Group is not a typical law firm.  Their practice focuses on Intellectual Property – Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights, and Trade Secrets. They will help you build value in your business by protecting your ideas, inventions, and identity, including:Identifying and assessing the value of intellectual property;Preparing and prosecuting the US and International patent and trademark applications.Preparing freedom-to-operate opinions, validity/invalidity opinions and infringement/ non-infringement opinions.Conducting due diligence of third-party IP portfolios for acquisition, litigation and/or design-around.Conducting negotiations and drafting agreements relating to assignment, licensing, and other transactions affecting the intellectual property. If you have any questions concerning Patents | Trademarks | Copyrights please contact Mr. Martin at 318 Main Street | Suite 503 | Evansville, IN 47708 ( 812.492.4478  | [email protected]  or |www.IPSolutionsLaw.comlast_img read more

Elkhart County no longer issuing mask order fines

first_img Pinterest Elkhart County no longer issuing mask order fines By Brooklyne Beatty – March 9, 2021 3 475 IndianaLocalNews WhatsApp Twitter Facebook Google+ Google+center_img Facebook Pinterest (Photo Supplied/Indiana State Prison) Elkhart County is no longer issuing fines to people not wearing masks.WSBT reports the Board of Commissioners voted to remove that portion of the mask ordinance this week, saying the county has reached a point in the pandemic where it is no longer necessary.The County’s Health Department has been able to issue fines to customers and businesses caught violating the mask mandate since December. Previous articleMore than 1.1 Hoosiers have received their first COVID-19 shotNext articleElkhart County issues new rental, utility assistance program Brooklyne Beatty Twitter WhatsApp TAGScoronavirusCOVID-19Elkhart Countyfineshealth departmentIndianamask mandatemask order last_img read more

PHOTOS: John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring Bring “Meeting Of The Spirits” To Austin

first_imgLoad remaining images Last night, the “John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring: A Meeting Of The Spirits” tour swept through Austin, Texas at the Paramount Theatre for one of their final nights of tour. The “Meeting Of The Spirits” tour is comprised of John McLaughlin and the 4th Dimension and Jimmy Herring and the Invisible Whip. The tour has sparked wild reactions nationwide to what is perhaps the most exciting tour of the year, where Widespread Panic‘s Jimmy Herring opens the night with a set with The Invisible Whip–featuring Jeff Sipe, Matt Slocum, Kevin Scott, and Jason Crosby–then Mahavishnu Orchestra’s John McLaughlin takes the stage with The 4th Dimension. At the end of the sets, the two bands merge together for enormously collaborative encores each night. Herring & McLaughlin are easily two of the most influential guitarists of our time, and seeing the two join forces on a nightly basis is the stuff of dreams for fans–especially for McLaughlin’s final tour on the road.EXCLUSIVE: Jimmy Herring Talks New Band, This Year’s Losses, And The Unknown Future Of PanicPhotographer Erik Kabik was on site to capture the glory of Thursday night’s performance in Austin, as you can see in the gallery below.2017 John McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring: A Meeting Of The Spirits Dates12/5/17 Seattle, WA, Moore Theatre12/6/17 Portland, OR, Revolution Hall12/8/17 San Francisco, CA, The Warfield12/9/17 Los Angeles, CA, Royce Hall-UCLAJohn McLaughlin & Jimmy Herring: A Meeting Of The Spirits Tour | Austin, TX | 11/30/17: Photos by Erik Kabiklast_img read more

‘The story of us’

first_img Related Somewhere in Senegal, or maybe France, a student taking the HarvardX course “Fundamentals of Neuroscience” is anesthetizing a cockroach and studying the insect’s legs, in order to watch the electric patterns and hear the sound of its neurons at work.You couldn’t ask for a better illustration of course creator David Cox’s belief that science is for everybody and, at its best, a DIY-endeavor.Initially rolled out three years ago, “Fundamentals of Neuroscience” was one of the first MOOCs (massive open online courses) offered by HarvardX and it remains one of the most ambitious, both for its subject matter and its presentation.It’s also been a popular success, with participants from more than 150 countries at last tally. The course, more like a sequence of stackable or standalone modules, has seen more than 210,000 unique visitors spend 120,000 hours exploring it.“We cover the full range of biophysics, from the smallest part of a neuron up to the collective action of the brain,” says Cox, assistant professor of molecular and cellular biology and of computer science. “It’s a big, broad survey that builds up to the full organism, and we’ve organized the course from small to big.”Three of four planned parts have been offered so far: “Electrical Properties of the Neuron” covers the fundamentals of how the components work; “Neurons and Networks” shows how they interact with each other; and “The Brain” examines how the organ functions and how sensory perception works. An academic reality show ‘PredictionX’ brings together faculty from across the University to discuss the human need to know the future But when those concepts are translated into the online format, the real fun begins. And yes, fun is the operative word: Cox and his collaborators favor a vibrant visual and directorial style for their course, taking full advantage of multimedia. The course sections come with futuristic synthesizer music, moving charts and graphs, and fanciful animations.One such piece, “The Synapse” — produced and narrated by Nadja Oertelt, the course’s original senior project lead and producer — verges on the psychedelic with its Claymation imagery. Deep red electric charges shoot through the animated brain, a floating skull and crossbones represent psychic disorders, and, when Oertelt mentions how perception is seasoned over time, a guiding hand “opens” the head and seasons the brain with a shaker of salt.“I think that it’s arbitrary to make a distinction between what is entertaining and what is educational,” Oertelt says. “The reality is that we need a more diverse scientific workplace, and we need to open that space to everybody. The way to do that is to make it feel friendly, not like something only a faculty member could understand.”Cox met Oertelt when both were at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he as a graduate student and she as a research assistant. She is currently a senior producer at the digital media website Mashable. Both were inspired by the educational TV they grew up watching, and Cox credits Oertelt for giving the course its coherent look and feel.And lest you conclude that online education isn’t brain surgery, sometimes it is. For one grittier segment, Oertelt interviewed a patient with Parkinson’s disease, and the camera followed the patient into the operating room where he received deep-brain stimulation to improve his motor functions.,The course also visited Harvard’s Warren Anatomical Museum — the home of the skull of Phineas Gage, a 19th-century railroad worker who survived an accident that sent a steel spike through his frontal lobe, prompting some of the first major brain research.Students’ own brains get a workout through the course’s “guided interactivity” sections. In these, the video narrator presents a choice, and the students’ actions determine what happens next.“The students don’t always realize these sections are coming,” Cox says. “We’ll lay out a topic and ask you to predict what you’d say if, for example, you increased the diameter of a neuron. And then we give you the simulation to see if your answer was right or not.”Finally, the course invites students to do hands-on experiments at home. The partner group Backyard Brains has developed a “spiker box” that allows anyone to see and hear insects’ neurological activity — something previously not possible outside a well-equipped lab. If you isolate a cockroach leg, the box amplifies the actual sounds of the “spiking,” or neurological activity, of the still-living leg. An iPhone app allows you to watch the spiking patterns. You can even stimulate the neurons through music and make the leg move and dance.“You’re basically eavesdropping on the cockroach’s nervous system,” Cox says. “When students try these experiments, it gives them a sense that they could be a scientist. And there is research showing that such students will do better in their exams and rate themselves as being more effective.”The democratization of science is the course’s true agenda.“The important thing to realize is that there’s no stable truth in science,” Oertelt says. “Every piece of knowledge that we teach and that the students take in is a product of hugely collaborative effort across time and space by scientists trying to get closer to some kind of physical truth. You’re not trying to discover some nugget. Instead you’re always questioning and testing hypotheses as to how the world works. That’s an ongoing process, and it’s something that the students can be part of.”According to Cox, the course’s appeal is designed to be universal.“Some people are viewing it as a recreational activity, and I have no problem with that,” he says. “What makes us unique is our brains, so it’s really something that everybody is interested in. At the end of the day, it’s the story of us.”last_img read more

FLU CONFERENCE COVERAGE H5N1, other flu viruses show signs of drug resistance

first_imgJun 22, 2007 – TORONTO (CIDRAP News) – Scientists are uncovering naturally occurring resistance in influenza to the antiviral drugs that can prevent or treat it, potentially complicating plans by international authorities and many countries to build large drug stockpiles as a hedge against a pandemic.In presentations yesterday at the International Conference on Options for the Control of Influenza, researchers outlined the discovery of mutations that appear to reduce the susceptibility of H5N1 avian flu to the leading antiviral drug, oseltamivir (Tamiflu). Other findings uncovered mutations in a seasonal flu strain, H1N1, that could reduce the effectiveness of another antiviral, zanamivir (Relenza), and a not-yet-released antiviral, peramivir.The mutations, which were discovered via laboratory assays, appear to be spontaneous and not the result of inappropriate use of the drugs on avian flu patients, the researchers said. But they represent a daunting development in a field where the pharmaceutical options for containing influenza have diminished as H5N1, feared as the possible precursor to a pandemic strain, has extended its range.”Nature has surprises in store,” said Dr. Jennifer McKimm-Breschkin of Australia’s CSIRO Molecular Health Technologies. “If oseltamivir has lower effectiveness against these isolates, this is not good news.”Indonesian, Cambodian isolates appear resistantIn the most surprising paper, McKimm-Breschkin revealed that isolates from two of the H5N1 virus’s three main groupings, or clades, have developed partial resistance to oseltamivir.Viruses recovered from domestic birds in Cambodia, a clade 1 country, became 6 to 7 times less sensitive to oseltamivir between 2004 and 2005, as measured by lab tests. And 2005 isolates from Indonesia, the country where the clade 2 grouping arose before spreading west as far as Europe, were 25 to 30 times less sensitive to oseltamivir than any of the clade 1 viruses collected in 2004.In an unusual finding, McKimm-Breschkin said, the virus remained virulent despite the mutation—which might explain why Indonesia has the world’s highest case-fatality rate for H5N1 (80%).Influenza’s ability to resist the action of antiviral drugs is a particular concern because only four licensed drugs in two classes work against it: oseltamivir and zanamivir (the neuraminidase inhibitors), and the older drugs amantadine and rimantadine (the adamantanes). Both drug resistance and concern over its implications have been increasing recently.In December 2005, Dr. Menno de Jong and colleagues reported that 2 out of 8 patients treated at the Hospital for Tropical Diseases in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, died of oseltamivir-resistant H5N1 flu. In January 2006, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention urged physicians treating seasonal flu not to use the two older drugs, after routine tests revealed that 91% of isolates were resistant to them.And in April 2007, Dr. Shuji Hatakeyama of the University of Tokyo published an account in the Journal of the American Medical Association of 8 children who had been stricken with seasonal influenza B, were treated with oseltamivir, and subsequently showed mutations conferring resistance against the drug. Three of the children were infected with the partially resistant strain by others, the paper said.Higher doses may overcome resistanceBecause the oseltamivir-resistance mutations reported yesterday were found in lab tests of bird isolates, it is difficult to draw conclusions about human treatment, McKimm-Breschkin said. But in another presentation yesterday, Dr. Elena Govorkova of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis kept a clade 2 virus from Turkey from replicating in ferrets by administering the equivalent of 2.5 times the standard human dose of oseltamivir, signaling that the drug may be able to overcome the mutation if administered early enough and in high enough doses.The World Health Organization (WHO) currently is revising treatment recommendations for both dosing and timing of oseltamivir, based on the shared experience of clinicians who have treated H5N1 patients, said Dr. Frederick Hayden of the agency’s Global Influenza Programme. Hayden, who was the lead author of a 2005 review of H5N1 drug resistance, said experience in several countries has shown that earlier and longer treatment and higher doses may make a difference to patients’ survival.That input is needed, McKimm-Breschkin said: If patients infected with less-susceptible strains of virus receive drug doses that are too low to overcome the mutation, the strains will survive and could develop greater resistance.She said the discovery should signal the need to include other drugs such as zamamivir in pandemic planning: “Relying solely on oseltamivir for stockpiles poses the risk that we will be left behind without an effective drug.”But other research presented yesterday found mutations in H1N1 seasonal flu that could affect the usefulness of other drugs. Four isolates from the Philippines, analyzed as part of a routine review at the WHO’s Influenza Collaborating Center in Melbourne, Australia, showed changes that could interfere with the action of zanamivir and peramivir, said Dr. Aeron Hurt of the center. Because zanamivir is little-used in the Philippines and peramivir is still in phase 1 trials, the researchers assume the mutations are spontaneous and not due to inadequate drug treatment.”Whether this would confer clinical resistance is still unknown,” Hurt said.But if the findings are bad news for the remaining influenza drugs, presentations and posters at the conference demonstrated that there are other drugs entering the pipeline—a change from the last Options conference, which was held 4 years ago when H5N1 avian flu was just beginning its intercontinental spread.An experimental drug called Fludase bypasses the flu virus altogether and instead temporarily blocks the lung-tissue receptors where the flu virus binds to replicate, Dr. Jessica Belser of Emory University said in a presentation yesterday. In a small mouse study, the compound worked prophylactically to protect against H5N1 infection and as a treatment after exposure to the virus.The compound, made by NexBio of San Diego, will enter phase 1 clinical trials this summer, Belser said.See also:Apr 19 WHO summary of recommendations on clinical treatment of human H5N1 cases 29 CIDRAP News story “International network to study high-dose Tamiflu”Dec 22, 2005, CIDRAP News story “Tamiflu resistance in avian flu victims sparks concern”De Jong MD, Thanh TT, Khanh TH, et al. Oseltamivir resistance during ttreatment of influenza A (H5N1) infection. N Engl J Med 2005 Dec 22;353(25):2667-72 [Full text]Hatakeyama S, Sugaya N, Ito M, et al. Emergence of influenza B viruses with reduced sensitivity to neuraminidase. JAMA 2007 Apr 4;297(13):1435-42 [Abstract]CDC announcement on adamantanes read more

ZAGREB TOURFILM FESTIVAL: The Dubrovnik Riviera won the Grand Prix of the festival

first_imgAt the gala dinner at the Esplanade Hotel, where the participants of the 8th ZAGREB TOURFILM FESTIVAL gathered, awards were presented to the best tourist films. This year, over 300 films arrived, from a total of 41 countries from Spain, Portugal, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Ecuador, Brazil, and the winners were chosen by an international jury of ten members. All awarded prizes as well as films, by categories, are attached.AWARDS AT THE 8TH ZAGREB TOURFILM FESTIVAL The Grand Prix of the festival was won by the film Dubrovnik Riviera, which was also named the best Croatian tourist film. Nagradu za životno djelo “Promocija turizma – stil života” koju Zagreb Tourfilm Festival dodjeljuje zaslužnim pojedincima  koji su gostima Hrvatske  i njihovom ugodnom boravku u njoj, ali i promociji naše zemlje u svijetu, posvetili cijeli život, ove godine zasluženo  je dobila Dagmar Meneghello, novinarka, izdavačica, kolekcionarka, galeristica, mecena i vlasnica i voditeljica stoljetnog turističkog posjeda na Palmižani otvorenog 1906. godine, čijem je oplemenjivanju posvetila čitav svoj život. Iz zabitnog otočića daleko od civilizacije, bez vode, struje, telefona, organizirane veze s kopnom, ogromnom strašću kroz 50 godina stvorila je jedan od najljepših hrvatskih brendova kulturnog turizma poznatog u čitavom svijetu. ZAGREB TOURFILM FESTIVAL, whose director is the famous producer Spomenka Saraga, is part of the international association of film festivals CIFFT based in Vienna, which has a total of 17 world festivals.  GRAND PRIXThe Best of the Zagreb TourFilm Festival 2019DUBROVNIK RIVIERA (Croatia) Best Tourist Destination 20191st place – CountryI DREAM OF ECUADOR (USA) Best Tourist Destination 20192nd place – CountryAZERBAIJAN: TAKE ANOTHER LOOK (Azerbaijan) Best Tourist Destination 20193rd place – CountryGERMAN SUMMER CITIES (Germany) Best Tourist Destination 20191st place – RegionDUBROVNIK RIVIERA (Croatia) Best Tourist Destination 20192nd place – RegionGRAN CANARIA, FAIRYTALE ISLAND (Spain) Best Tourist Destination 20193rd place – RegionWANT TO DISCOVER MY ALENTEJO? (Portugal) Best Tourist Destination 20191st place – CityWE LOVE ZAGREB (Croatia) Best Tourist Destination 20192nd place – CityMADRID EMBRACES YOU (Spain) Best Tourist Destination 20193rd place – CityWHAT MAKES AN EXTRAORDINARY STORY (UAE)#inAbuDhabi Best Tourism Services Film 201940TH ANNIVERSARY OF MADRID PRIDE Best Events, Festivals and Congress Film 2019CZECH TOURISM – CHRISTMAS COMMERCIAL (Czech Republic) Best Nature and Rural Tourism Film 2019GRAN CANARIA, FAIRYTALE ISLAND (Spain) Best Sport Tourism Film 2019BLUE AZORES OUTDOOR STORIES (Portugal) Best Wine and Gastronomic Film 2019ENOTURISMO ALENTEJO (Portugal) Best Hotels and Resorts Film 2019BARUT COLLECTION (Turkey) Best Cultural Tourism Film 2019ANDREW BONE: CAPTURING AFRICAS WILD SIDE (South Africa) Best Adventure Tourism Film 2019INSIDE (Brazil)The Best Environmental Film 2019STOLEN APES (Kenya)The Best TV Reportage 2019THE SNOWFIELD, A JOURNEY INTO THE WILD (Japan) Best Ethnography and Society Film 2019CULTURAL ROUTE OF BECHARAC & GANGA (Croatia) Best Art, Music, Culture Film 2019RAIF (Bosnia and Herzegovina)The Best Ecology Film 2019VANILLA BROWN GOLD (Germany)The Best Advertising Campaign 2019THE AZORES: ESCAPE TO AUTHENTIC (Portugal) Best Video Travel Bloggers (vlog) 2019ICELAND BIKE FARM (Slovenia) Best Croatian Film 20191st placeDUBROVNIK RIVIERA (Croatia) Best Croatian Film 20192nd placeVISIT LIKA (Croatia) Best Croatian Film 20193rd placeWE LOVE ZAGREB (Croatia) Jury Mention 2019PLEASANT PLACE OF HAPPY PEOPLE (Slovenia) Jury Mention 2019PINGTUNG, WHERE AMAZING HAPPENS (Taiwan)Special Jury Mention 2019ETHIOPIA (Croatia)Directors Award 2019STROLLING THROUGH TOKYO:WHERE ANCIENT AND MODERN MEET (Japan)Directors Award 2019THE UNDAMAGED (Slovenia)Directors Award 2019THE ART OF TRAVEL (Croatia) read more

Jokowi deploys TNI, police to enforce ‘new normal’

first_imgJokowi said the basic reproduction number (R0) of COVID-19 had fallen below one in several provinces, indicating a decline in the transmission rate in those areas. Read also: Health minister issues ‘new normal’ guidelines for workplacesHadi said there were approximately 1,800 places that would be guarded by TNI and police personnel, including shopping malls, traditional markets, tourism spots and other places with high traffic.“What we will do is ensure that health protocols are carried out with discipline. Firstly, we will ensure that everyone is wearing face masks. Secondly, everyone has to maintain a safe distance. And third, we will prepare places to wash hands or provide hand sanitizer,” he said. President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo announced on Tuesday that the Indonesian Military (TNI) and National Police would be deployed to guard crowded places in preparation for the so-called “new normal”.During a visit to the Hotel Indonesia traffic circle MRT station with TNI commander Air Marshal Hadi Tjahjanto, National Police chief Gen. Idham Azis and Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan on Tuesday, Jokowi said security forces would help to ensure that residents abided by physical distancing rules.“Starting today, TNI and police personnel will be deployed in crowded places to make sure society continues to abide by the health protocols,” he said at a press conference after the visit, adding that the personnel would be deployed in four provinces and 25 regencies and cities. Last week, Jakarta Governor Anies Baswedan decided to prolong large-scale social restrictions (PSBB) in the city for the third time. They will now last until June 4. At the press conference, Anies said that the administration’s decision to stop or continue PSBB after that date would depend on how well Jakartans complied with the protocols over the next two weeks. “These two weeks are the two weeks that will determine whether this will be the last period of PSBB or whether there will be another extension of PSBB,” he said.On Saturday, Health Minister Terawan Agus Putranto issued new health protocols for workplaces to usher in the “new normal”.According to the official government count, Indonesia had 23,165 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 1,418 deaths as of Tuesday. (trn)Topics :last_img read more

Among today’s auction results was a home that hit the market for the first time in 60 years

first_img34 Prince Street, Grange was full of history.According to auctioneer Phil Parker, the owner’s children were feeling the emotion of the day. “For 60 years it’s been a terrific family home for five siblings,” Mr Parker said.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus23 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market23 hours agoThere was certainly a crowd for the event with late registrations seeing the scheduled 1pm start time pushed back by 15 minutes.When Mr Parker finally called for an opener, the 50+ crowd contained more than 20 registered bidders — an extraordinary number for a Brisbane auction.A cheeky opener of $750,000 was gratefully accepted by Mr Parker, who then kept control of proceedings as six different parties had a go.A pause at $1.195 million to seek vendor’s instructions resulted in the home declared “on the market!” and we were away again.It was a tennis match of bids between two prospects as the figure climbed by $3000 to $5000 increments.In the end, a family buyer won out, purchasing the home for $1.235 million.After the sale, one of the estate’s executers, John Kyle, said it was an emotional day for his family as he recalled a few memories from growing up at the home.“A couple of the mango trees have got names — there’s John, Peter and Christine — and we built the space under the house with dad — those memories really stand out,” Mr Kyle said.Mr Kyle said he was pleased to see it go to a new family for its next chapter.“I feel confident whatever happens it’s going to fit in with the family vibe of the area,” he said.It wasn’t today’s only northern suburbs success story today with 18 Thirteenth Avenue, Kedron also finding new owners today at $1.1 million. Auctioneer Phil Parker declares the home at Grange sold after fierce bidding by family buyers.A BIG chunk of history went under the hammer today as a Brisbane home on a huge, near-city block called for all comers. 34 Prince Street, Grange was offering some very serious real estate. 34 Prince Street, Grange was a classic piece of Brisbane suburbia.The home was being sold as part of an estate finalisation after having been in the one family for 60 years. The rambling, medium-set weatherboard colonial sat of a huge 915sq m corner site, positioned within a short stroll of the Days Road retail precinct.Ray White Ascot sales consultant Ian Cuneo said interest in the home had been huge, and not just from those looking to live there.“The number of registered bidders is probably split 50/50 between developers and owner-occupiers,” he said.“The big block size means the end user could be a family that’ll spend a significant amount on a rebuild and keep this as a family oriented area — look over your shoulder [he points] and you’ll see kids with a cake and lemonade stand — it’s a classic family area,” Mr Cuneo said.center_img 18 Thirteenth Avenue Kedron also found new owners todayRay White Everton Park sales specialist Melissa Goudge said it was smiles all around.“The buyers were ecstatic and the sellers were very happy,” Ms Goudge said.“It was a New Zealand couple who bought it off a New Zealand couple!”Ms Goudge said there were six registered bidders and crowd of around 60 people at the event today.Follow Kieran Clair on Twitter at @kieranclairlast_img read more

Trade union threatens universities over USS deficit plans

first_imgA trade union representing members of the Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) is set to ballot for industrial action over proposals from university employers to amend the scheme’s structure.The university employer representative, Universities UK (UUK), is currently consulting on four options to present to USS, a £41.6bn (€50.3bn) scheme, on how to reduce the “substantial” deficit expected to come out of the scheme’s triennial valuation results.UUK’s preferred option is to see the complete closure of the final salary section of the scheme, shifting all final salary members to the career-average scheme, which USS set up in 2011.This would include an upper-salary threshold of £40,000, with an additional defined contribution (DC) section for pay above this limit, while still receiving an employer contribution. However, financial modelling on the impact of UUK’s reforms found that the impact on members’ pensions was too high for the union to accept.Affected members would lose “tens of thousands of pounds” on their annual pension under the reforms, it said.According to modelling, undertaken by consultancy First Actuarial on behalf of the union, some of the members stand to lose between £98,000 and £230,000 on the total value of their pension.The union is now balloting members at 67 UK universities over boycotting examinations and coursework assessments.“Since 2011 [when the final salary section was closed to new members], the fund’s investments have grown by £8bn, the number of members has grown by 18%, and returns on investment have outperformed both average earnings and inflation,” the UCU said.Michael MacNeil, head of bargaining at the UCU, said the union had issues with the valuation method used at USS and argued that UUK’s plans were prompted by the expected deficit increase.Earlier this year, USS announced annual investment returns of 7.6%.However, the chairman warned that the scheme was set to see a dramatic increase in its deficit level once the triennial review was complete.This was despite the fund’s reporting a £4.3bn fall in its deficit, calculated on an annual basis.“The approach USS has adopted says the key risk to the scheme is instability over time, and this amount is determined by the valuations and scheme investment,” MacNeil said.He said the fund should scrap its UK Gilts-plus approach to determining investment returns and swap to an internal rate of return method.“We think this would give a more accurate picture of the scheme’s financial health and reduce volatility in the valuation result, with assets and liabilities moving more in line with one another,” he said. “It would mean the future would look less bleak for the pension scheme than the current picture.”He said the proposals were to the detriment of the majority of the union’s members, and that the £40,000 cap was something it would fight strongly.“There are a number of variables with pensions, so what we need is the employers to get in a serious discussion with us to try and reach an agreed position to put to the USS board,” he said.He added that the Union would be willing to discuss other variables such as the accrual rate and reevaluation rate.last_img read more