Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says all Jamaicans who requested evacuation assistance from hurricane-ravaged Eastern Caribbean islands have returned home.He told the House of Representatives on September 26 that 200 Jamaicans were airlifted home from the affected territories where they were based, including the Turks and Caicos, and the British Virgin Islands, at a cost of $50 million.Mr. Holness said several persons opted to remain in those countries to assist with recovery and rebuilding efforts, citing the gesture as “commendable” and reflective of the “Jamaican spirit”.He informed that they have, however, sent their children back to Jamaica to continue their education, consequent on the resulting disruption in the education system.Meanwhile, Mr. Holness said the Government is exploring what additional assistance can be extended to affected Eastern Caribbean islands, particularly Antigua and Barbuda, and Dominica, for which Jamaica has already committed financial resources and personnel to assist with recovery and rebuilding efforts.The Prime Minister, who was responding to a query from Central St. Mary Member of Parliament, Dr. Morais Guy, cited the provision of accommodation and educational support services for students whose schools have a similar curriculum to Jamaica’s, particularly those preparing for the 2017/18 Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate (CSEC) and Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE).Additionally, he said consequent on discussions with Dominica’s Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, the Government will explore the possibility of completing a bridge, construction of which the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) commenced following extensive flood rains previously impacting that island.“My understanding is that we went, did some assessments and started (work), but did not complete it,” he indicated.Mr. Holness said the Government will determine whether the JDF’s 120-man Disaster Assistance Response Team (DART), being deployed to Dominica in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria following Prime Minister Skerrit’s request for support, can assist with that and other infrastructure repairs after assessments of damage and dislocation sustained are completed.The DART’s deployment is among the assistance which Mr. Holness advised the House that the Government has committed to Dominica’s recovery efforts.He indicated that the deployment is being done in three phases, with the first team having been dispatched on September 26. The remaining two teams are scheduled to land in Dominica on September 27.The team will be assisting with security and distribution of relief supplies; the provision of limited medical care; conducting damage assessments; recovery planning; basic engineering work; and logistics management.Additionally, Mr. Holness said the Government has committed to providing Dominica with a four-man technical and advisory support team to be led by the JDF’s Colonel, Jamie Ogilvie.This intervention, he said, is intended to assist with efforts to restore the integrity of Dominica’s national security systems and develop a plan for the recovery and rebuilding of that nation.The Government has also committed the equivalent of US$100,000 each to the redevelopment funds for Antigua and Barbuda, and Dominica.Meanwhile, Mr. Holness said members of the JDF were also deployed as part of the CARICOM Disaster Response Unit to provide immediate relief in Tortola, British Virgin Islands, in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma.He advised that they remain in that territory “working tirelessly” on behalf of Jamaica and CARICOM.Mr. Holness said the latest information he has received puts the death toll at 160, and the overall value of damage sustained in the Caribbean and United States at some US$100 billion.“We again extend our sympathies to all countries that were impacted by what has been described as the ‘ferocity and brutality’ of these recent hurricanes, which left a trail of destruction never before seen in the Caribbean. I have great confidence that, as a region, we will rebuild and not just replicate what was there before,” he said.The Prime Minister pointed out that this approach will be one of systematic renewal, with planned, structured development; with stronger homes and supporting amenities; and infrastructure that is strong, resilient and sustainable.“We pray for our brothers and sisters and remind them that out of adversity will come opportunity,” Mr. Holness said. Additionally, he said consequent on discussions with Dominica’s Prime Minister, Roosevelt Skerrit, the Government will explore the possibility of completing a bridge, construction of which the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) commenced following extensive flood rains previously impacting that island. Mr. Holness said several persons opted to remain in those countries to assist with recovery and rebuilding efforts, citing the gesture as “commendable” and reflective of the “Jamaican spirit”. Prime Minister, the Most Hon. Andrew Holness, says all Jamaicans who requested evacuation assistance from hurricane-ravaged Eastern Caribbean islands have returned home. Story Highlights
FiveThirtyEight’s model calls Monday night’s NCAA men’s basketball championship game between Kentucky and Connecticut a tossup. If it’s as close as each team’s win probabilities are, the game will probably come down to free throws. If it does, advantage, UConn.The Huskies have hit 77.4 percent of their free throws this season, good for fifth out of the 351 teams in Division I. That’s the highest free-throw percentage ranking for a Final Four team since Michigan State ranked third in the nation in 2005. And if UConn shoots well at the line and beats Kentucky, the Huskies will have the highest free-throw percentage ranking of any champion since before the 1998 Final Four, the earliest for which stats are available. Kentucky is hitting 68.4 percent of its free throws, just 228th overall.Hitting lots of free throws is, not surprisingly, helpful for winning college basketball games, and in Storrs, Conn., free-throw shooting has become a key part of success. During the 2010-2011 season, current UConn associate coach Glen Miller found and shared a video of Steve Nash shooting from the free-throw line (Nash is a career 90.4 percent shooter in the NBA). That year, the Jim Calhoun-coached Huskies won the championship while finishing 11th nationally in free-throw shooting. UConn hit 82 percent of its free throws in the tournament. It was a big improvement from the Huskies’ No. 312 ranking the prior time they won the title under Calhoun, in 2004. (That was the lowest ranking in free-throw accuracy for a champion on record.)Last season, its first under coach Kevin Ollie, UConn ranked 31st. During his four years as a Husky in the 1990s, Ollie improved his accuracy from the line, going from 71.8 percent his freshman year to 80.6 percent in his senior year. And under Ollie, UConn has improved, too. All three players to shoot at least 80 free throws last year and this year for UConn have a higher percentage this season.Even if you don’t appreciate the aesthetic value of Shabazz Napier’s free-throw shooting as much our Grantland colleague Louisa Thomas does, you should appreciate its value to the Huskies. Napier has hit 86.9 percent of his free throws this season, up from 81.9 percent last year. He’s also taken 64 percent more foul shots. He’s been even better in the tournament, missing just twice on 31 tries.To approximate the importance of free-throw accuracy for the Huskies’ success, I checked a few simple what-if scenarios. If they’d shot free throws in each game this season at the rate they shot last year (74.3 percent), or the national average rate this season (69.8 percent), the Huskies would have lost two more games during the season and been forced into overtime in a third. A loss in that overtime game could have jeopardized their tournament berth.At the national average rate, UConn would have hit just 15 of 22 free throws in both its Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight games — instead of hitting 20 and 21, respectively. Both games would have gone into overtime, which would have jeopardized its Final Four berth. And if the Huskies had shot in each game at the same rate as their opponent in that game, they would have lost their Sweet Sixteen game against Iowa State.Of course, these are overly simplified scenarios; games probably wouldn’t have played out exactly the same way with different free-throw results. But that could cut both ways: Perhaps a team of Huskies who were weaker from the line would have done even worse because they wouldn’t have gotten to shoot the back end of one-and-ones, or because opponents would have fouled them more often and prevented more field goals. Then again, the record of recent Final Fours shows plenty of teams can succeed while laying lots of bricks from the free-throw line. One conclusion is clear: UConn almost certainly wouldn’t have gotten this far without Napier’s deadeye accuracy with the clock stopped, or without that Steve Nash video. Oklahoma2002Final Four7 Ohio State1999Final Four297 Florida2014Final Four275 Butler2011Final69 Butler2010Final27 Duke1999Final76 Duke2010Champion8 Connecticut2009Final Four207 Syracuse2003Champion163 Marquette2003Final Four6 West Virginia2010Final Four121 Florida2006Champion33 Syracuse2013Final Four235 Memphis2008Final318 Michigan State2005Final Four3 Ohio State2007Final134 Villanova2009Final Four17 Kentucky1998Champion148 Ohio State2012Final Four107 Michigan State2010Final Four185 Wichita State2013Final Four167 Michigan State2001Final Four55 Duke2001Champion127 George Mason2006Final Four249 Michigan State2000Champion28 Connecticut1999Champion26 Kansas2002Final Four71 Kentucky2011Final Four108 UCLA2008Final Four55 Florida2007Champion168 Louisville2005Final Four62 Georgetown2007Final Four105 UCLA2007Final Four252 Illinois2005Final45 North Carolina2000Final Four102 North Carolina2009Champion18 Kansas2003Final276 North Carolina2005Champion53 Connecticut2004Champion312 Kansas2008Champion131 North Carolina1998Final Four54 Duke2004Final Four26 Michigan2013Final158 Georgia Tech2004Final157 Oklahoma State2004Final Four150 Connecticut2014TBD5 Louisville2013Champion118 Arizona2001Final17 Michigan State1999Final Four24 Kentucky2012Champion63 Indiana2002Final135 UCLA2006Final168 Final Four TeamYearFinishFT% rank Michigan State2009Final138 Texas2003Final Four79 Maryland2001Final Four128 Louisville2012Final Four191 Louisiana State2006Final Four170 Wisconsin2014Final Four26 Kansas2012Final169 Wisconsin2000Final Four169 Utah1998Final28 North Carolina2008Final Four13 Virginia Commonwealth2011Final Four97 Florida2000Final64 Kentucky2014TBD228 Connecticut2011Champion11 Maryland2002Champion56 Stanford1998Final Four14
Updated: 3:47 PM Today California politicians banned travel to South Carolina for its “anti-gay” laws. Same idiots also applaud Gov. Gavin Newsom for traveling to El Salvador to stand in solidarity with that country. Guess they don’t care about the anti-gay laws in El Salvador. *sigh*— Carl DeMaio (@carldemaio) April 2, 2019 KUSI Newsroom, Posted: April 2, 2019 April 2, 2019 California’s State employees cannot travel on state business to South Carolina.Attorney General Xavier Beccerra imposed the rule of law because South Carolina now allows Christian based foster homes to deny placement of children, if the potential guardians are not of that faith.It is California law that the state can sanction travel to states that restrict access to gays, transgender people, or in this case, faiths from the rights of the general population.The South Carolina law is likely to be challenged in court, and is judged by many to be patently unconstitutional.The Office of the Attorney General in the State of California Department of Justice released the following information regarding the decision to ban state funded travel to South Carolina:SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today announced that, effective April 15, 2019, California will prohibit state-funded and state-sponsored travel to South Carolina as a result of a discriminatory provision buried deep within a general budget bill enacted on July 5, 2018 in South Carolina. The law, H-4950 Paragraph 38.29, enables private faith-based child-placing agencies to discriminate against those who do not conform to their religious beliefs or moral convictions, including members of the LGBTQ community. Although H-4950 does not mention sexual orientation explicitly, it is written broadly enough to authorize such discrimination, subjecting it to the provisions of California’s Assembly Bill 1887 (AB 1887).“The State of South Carolina recently enacted a measure that sanctions discrimination against families in the placement of children in need of homes. The State of California stands strongly against any form of discrimination. AB 1887 authorizes my office to make that promise real,” said Attorney General Becerra. “Pursuant to AB 1887, California will now bar state-funded or sponsored travel to South Carolina.”South Carolina’s discriminatory measure comes on the heels of other actions taken in the state prior to the enactment of H-4950. Earlier in 2018, South Carolina’s Governor Henry McMaster requested that the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services waive all applicable anti-discrimination regulations to permit the faith-based foster care agency Miracle Hill, as well as other such agencies receiving public funds, to discriminate on any basis consistent with their religious beliefs. As a result of these discriminatory laws, Miracle Hill is able to collect information on the faith of those applying to be foster parents and use it to reject families who want to provide foster care solely on the basis of those beliefs. In one instance, these policies led to the exclusion of a Jewish woman who simply sought to mentor foster youth. This is particularly egregious in light of the fact that Miracle Hill accounted for 15% of all South Carolina foster placements and is reportedly the largest provider of foster families for children who do not have significant special needs in the state. Shortly after requesting an exemption from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Governor McMaster then issued an executive order propping up this discriminatory practice. In January 2019, the Trump Administration granted the waiver requested by Governor McMaster, sanctioning this form of discrimination in South Carolina’s foster care system.AB 1887, which took effect in 2017, prohibits state-funded and state-sponsored travel to states with laws that authorize or require discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression. AB 1887’s restriction on using state funds for travel applies to California state agencies, departments, boards, authorities, and commissions, including an agency, department, board, authority, or commission of the University of California, the Board of Regents of the University of California, and the California State University.For additional information on AB 1887, including the list of states subject to its provisions, visit: www.oag.ca.gov/ab1887. California bans state employees from traveling to South Carolina KUSI Newsroom South Carolina recently enacted a law allowing child-placing agencies to discriminate against prospective parents. We stand strongly against any form of discrimination, so, effective April 15, California will restrict state-funded travel to South Carolina. https://t.co/yUhXt8y3gS pic.twitter.com/eodf91atly— Xavier Becerra (@AGBecerra) April 2, 2019 Categories: California News, Local San Diego News, Politics FacebookTwitter
Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. Now playing: Watch this: Tags Gadgets TVs Comments Adorable MemoBird printer prints out love notes like a receipt 12 Photos 1:15 The Cheapskate Send high-tech ‘telegrams’ with this Wi-Fi printer 10 Bonus deal: Thought all the TV deals were over? Think again. For a limited time, Walmart has the Sceptre 32-inch LED TV for just $89.99. List price: $180.See it at WalmartThis is about as basic as TVs get these days, with no built-in smarts (for streaming), just two HDMI inputs and a 720p resolution — though that’s ample for a screen of this size.What’s particularly telling is the review average: 4.5 stars from over 3,300 buyers. To me that translates to a TV you’re all but guaranteed to like — for a pretty incredible price.Want something a little bigger? Also on sale at Walmart: The Sharp LC-40Q3070U 40-inch LED TV for $149.99 — normally $229.99.See it at WalmartThis one is a 1080p model with three HDMI inputs — but, again, it’s BYO streaming capabilities. The reviews here are a little less stellar — 4.2 stars from just 50 buyers — but still pretty good overall.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on PCs, phones, gadgets and much more. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page. Find more great buys on the CNET Deals page and follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter! Walmart Amazon Available in gray, pink or green, the Memobird is an adorable little thermal note-printer. Sarah Tew/CNET Can a printer be fun? It can when it’s a little internet-connected job that cranks out cute receipt-style notes and doesn’t need any ink. And don’t forget the fun of scoring it for the cheapest price anywhere, courtesy of yours truly.For a limited time, and while supplies last, ZDNet Academy has the Memobird mobile thermal printer for $48 when you apply promo code CNETMB20 at checkout. That’s an extra $12 off the current price, which is already $10 off Amazon’s price. Update: Apparently shipping is not included in the price. My apologies for the error.See it at ZDNet AcademyAvailable in your choice of three colors, the Memobird is compact and portable, though it does require AC power. It uses no ink, instead relying on the same thermal technology as most cash register receipts. So there are no pricey ink cartridges — instead, the only consumables here are the special paper rolls. Fortunately, they’re pretty cheap. Here’s an eight-roll supply for just $12.99, for example. And a three-pack of assorted colors for $9.99. If you want adhesive paper, you can get three rolls of that for $9.99 as well. Update: The 8-roll option is now showing a price of $27.99. I’m not sure why it jumped so suddenly — and significantly. Share your voice The printer connects to both your phone and the internet via Wi-Fi. That means you can print locally to it (reminders, shopping lists and so forth), but also share it with friends and family. I could see giving a Memobird to the grandparents, then having everyone in the family send little notes and greetings.The app lets you create notes very easily, complete with any mixture of text, stickers, doodles and photos. You can also install templates for things like memos, lists and labels.Now for the bad news: It may take as long as two weeks to arrive. (Current expected-delivery range is Feb. 17 to 20.)I must admit, I really like this little thing. I’d be less enamored with it at $70 (or even $80, which was the price at Amazon a few days ago), but $48 works for me.Your thoughts?
D.C. Internships is accepting applications for programs in the Institute on Political Journalism for summer 2016 positions. Students can earn up to 35 hours a week in competitive internships around the D.C. metro region. Deadline for early applications is Dec. 10. For more information, visit 202-986-0384 or dcinternships.org