On Wednesday the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee held a hearing on the confirmation of Andrew Wheeler to serve as Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).Wheeler has been serving as the acting EPA Administrator since Scott Pruitt resigned. While many of the questions and most of the media reporting on the hearing have focused on climate change issues, Wheeler was asked about the granting of Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) waivers under the “small refinery exemptions” category.Some Senators raised concerns with the increasing number of waivers that were granted and questioned the eligibility of large oil and gas companies for small refinery waivers.Wheeler indicated the agency could not deny a waiver to a small refinery based on its parent company owner. In response to questions about whether EPA intends to reallocate the waived gallons, Wheeler stated that he does not see a lot of leeway and reallocating waived volumes would adversely impact other refiners and potentially lead to more requests for economic hardship waivers.ASA and our biodiesel industry partners are concerned with the issuance of waivers, the lack of transparency around the waiver requests and determinations, and the EPA’s reluctance to reallocate waived volumes.
A Vancouver man who died late Monday when his motorcycle veered off the road near the intersection of East Seventh and C streets was identified as 27-year-old Nickolas Meyer.An investigation found Meyer “failed to negotiate” a curve between East Sixth and Seventh streets. Traveling northbound, he slid off the east edge of the road and ran into a tree. He came to rest against a utility pole at the southeast corner of East Seventh Street and C Street intersection. The crash was reported at about 8:45 p.m.Meyer was wearing a helmet. Speed is believed to have been a factor in the fatal crash.
Closure notices and a new chain-link fence are now spreading the message that east Vancouver’s weekend warriors have lost a prime battle field.The softball field, outdoor basketball court and walking track at Nautilus Inc.’s headquarters were closed officially on Monday and construction permits have been granted to turn the sports site into additional parking stalls in preparation for new tenant Hewlett-Packard, expected to move into 68,000 square feet, or one floor of the three-level building, this year.Building owner Portland-based Pac-Trust is constructing the parking lot to accommodate HP, which will share the massive 480,000-square-foot building with Nautilus. Times have changed for the now-struggling fitness equipment company, which today employs about half the 500-person staff it had when it took over the building near Mill Plain Boulevard and 164th Avenue as a world headquarters in 2005. The company spent $15 million converting the former manufacturing building into upscale offices with curved lines inspired by the company’s circular logo, and putting in sports facilities, such as the softball diamond, basketball hoops and track.The sporting areas and an adjoining football/soccer field were always available to the public and it appears the football field will remain open directly behind the Nautilus building, south of the Columbia Crossing retail center. But plans for 448 new parking spaces would pave over the softball diamond and basketball courts. The existing parking lot now accommodates 770 vehicles. City officials say they have not received any citizen comments about Pac-Trust’s plans to develop the parking, proposed since October. Development proposal notices were mailed out to residents within 500 feet of the project on Oct. 18. The public comment period lasted through Nov. 1, said Jon Wagner, a senior planner with the city’s Development Review Department.
Call it a Valentine’s Day tradition on a monumental scale.A 4.3-magnitude earthquake occurred 6 miles north of Mount St. Helens on Monday morning — exactly 30 years to the day after an even bigger earthquake occurred at nearly the exact same spot. Monday’s quake was followed by more than a half-dozen much smaller aftershocks, all in the same general area.Scientists said the seismic activity does not indicate magma rising at Mount St. Helens. They’ve detected none of the shallow quakes or gas typically associated with an imminent volcanic eruption.But they said Monday’s quake — just like the one 30 years ago — is at least indirectly related to the volcano.Felt as far away as south Puget Sound and Astoria, Ore., Monday’s first temblor was the biggest in the Pacific Northwest in two years. Scientists suspect the quake, at 10:35 a.m., may have occurred in a bit of post-eruption settling in the landscape surrounding Mount St. Helens, which last erupted between 2004 and 2008.The quake generated a specific kind of shear wave felt over a wide area, said Bill Steele, seismology lab coordinator at the University of Washington in Seattle.In a curious twist of timing and fate, this type of surface wave is named for the scientist who discovered it: early 20th-century British geophysicist Augustus Love.
A man who lives off East Lucas Street in La Center reported this morning feeling the ground shake against his bare feet and items on his computer bounce around at about 10:36 a.m. for up to nine seconds.About 50 miles away, the U.S. Geological Survey is reporting two earthquakes, including a 4.3 magnitude, six miles north of Mount St. Helens.“I travel every week,” said Jason Johnson of La Center. “I’ve been in a lot of earthquakes down in the San Diego area. I felt the ground shaking.”Karrie Humphries of Orchards emailed The Columbian, “I think we had a small earthquake.”As of about 11 a.m., 450 people from as far south as Portland and north to Randle reported having felt the earthquake, according to Leslie Gordon, a spokeswoman for U.S. Geological Survey. “It was felt very weak to light shaking,” she said.The 4.3 magnitude earthquake came first. It was 3.1 miles deep and occurred in the Mount St. Helens seismic zone at 10:35 a.m. A magnitude 2.5 earthquake occurred two minutes later in the same area, at a depth of 1.7 miles.
After a foot chase, Longview police arrested a man who allegedly used a hatchet to slice off most of a Fred Meyer employee’s ear after being accused of shoplifting.Adrian Jess Kramer, 31, was booked into the Cowlitz County Jail on suspicion of first-degree assault, first-degree robbery, first-degree burglary and third-degree theft, according to bulletins from the Longview Police Department.Police said the employee’s ear was severed shortly after noon Monday in the store at 3184 N.E. Ocean Beach Highway in Longview. Kramer escaped after the assault, the bulletin said.An anonymous source told police on Wednesday that Kramer was hiding in a home in South Kelso.Longview police detectives watched the home and took positions around it in case Kramer ran. Kelso patrol officers also responded.Kramer did run and was captured in the 1100 block of Elm Street, the bulletin said. He was not armed and no one was reported injured. The employee was taken to OHSU Hospital in Portland to have his ear reattached. Wednesday evening, a Longview police spokesman did not return a call seeking information on whether the surgery was successful.However, a story in The Daily News of Longview said the victim is David Morrison and his brother is Steven Morrison. Here is part of the report from the Longview newspaper:David Morrison, 33, of Longview has worked for Fred Meyer since 2006 and has managed security at the Longview store since 2010. He is married and has four children.Steven Morrison said surgeons at Oregon Health & Science University worked on the ear for three or four hours, but it could not be reattached because they couldn’t properly reconnect tiny blood vessels and other tissues.
Fireworks explode during the Fourth of July celebration at Fort Vancouver on Wednesday. Folks of all stripes flocked to Independence Day at Fort Vancouver on Wednesday to celebrate, but one thing united them all — their love of putting a flag on it.All-American red, white and blue reigned supreme as the fashion trend of the day as thousands took the Fourth as an opportunity to wear their patriotism on their sleeves, literally.While most chose simple outfits — blue shorts and a red shirt, for example — some people’s ensembles could almost upstage the massive fireworks show later in the evening.Denise Buchanan headed to donate blood for the Red Cross wearing American flag shorts, a U.S.A. necklace and a T-shirt with wolves superimposed on a flag. The Vancouver resident brought along her foster children and also invited former foster children along. Every single one of them was dressed up and ready. One boy, she added, even shaved U.S.A. into the back of his head.The shorts she wears every year, but she said she picks a new shirt at Walmart each year, and all make an appearance only on the Fourth of July.
Key sponsors of Operation Homefront Vancouver Freedom Walk were Fred Meyer, AdvoCare and Creekside Mortgage.Operation Homefront Washingtonwes.email@example.comThey all had reasons to be in Sunday’s Operation Homefront Vancouver Freedom Walk.“My husband was in the Army, my father was in the Air Force and my grandfather was in the Army,” said Vancouver’s Libbey Holloway. Her girls, Gracie, 9, and Emily, 7, decided to run, not walk, along the Columbia River waterfront on a bright afternoon. The 2.5-mile walk went from the Grand Central Fred Meyer parking lot to the waterfront, over the Vancouver Land Bridge, through the historic district and back to the store.The event was meant to honor service members and veterans, police officers and firefighters, and to be a reminder of our freedoms and to allow for reflection on 9/11. About 60 people participated.Holloway noted her husband, Officer George Holloway, is with the Portland Police Bureau. Another reason to walk.Wes Forgey said he organized the event to also bring awareness to Operation Homefront, which provides emergency assistance to military families and wounded service personnel.“We want them to know we are here,” said Forgey, who is the Southwest Regional Coordinator for Operation Homefront.Retired from the Air Force, Forgey was asked why he is involved in the effort.“I like to consider myself a patriot, and I like to help young military folks because of all the deployments and the rigors of military family life,” he said.Last month, the chapter provided 250 backpacks filled with school supplies to local military families, Forgey said. He said when families in need receive help “there’s tears, there’s joy and relief, they’re emotional.” Forgey works with about 20 other volunteers. He said there are many Freedom Walks across America every September.
Keystone XL pipeline WASHINGTON — The long-delayed Keystone XL oil pipeline cleared a major hurdle toward approval Friday, a serious blow to environmentalists’ hopes that President Barack Obama will block the controversial project running more than 1,000 miles from Canada through the heart of the U.S.The State Department reported no major environmental objections to the proposed $7 billion pipeline, a bone of contention in the political debate over climate change. Republicans and some oil- and gas-producing states in the U.S. — as well as Canada’s minister of natural resources — cheered the report, but it further rankled environmentalists already at odds with Obama and his energy policy.The report stops short of recommending approval of the pipeline, but gives Obama new support if he chooses to endorse it in spite of opposition from many Democrats and environmental groups. Foes say the pipeline would carry “dirty oil” that contributes to global warming, and they also express concern about possible spills.Republicans and business and labor groups have urged Obama to approve the pipeline. The pipeline is also strongly supported by Democratic politicians in oil and gas-producing states.The 1,179-mile pipeline would travel cross Montana and South Dakota, carrying oil derived from tar sands in western Canada to a hub in Nebraska, where it would connect with existing pipelines to carry more than 800,000 barrels of crude oil a day through Kansas and Oklahoma to refineries on the Texas Gulf Coast.
One of “Washington’s Most Wanted” fugitives, Derral Kenneth Mosby, is still on the loose after he was traced to the Gee Creek rest area off Interstate 5 on Thursday.“We don’t have any reason to believe he’s in the area,” said Sgt. Fred Neiman, spokesman for the Clark County Sheriff’s Office.A black Saturn believed to be associated with the 36-year-old wanted man from Mossy Rock was found in the parking lot of the rest stop south of Ridgefield, and police tracked his cellphone to the area, according to Washington State Patrol Trooper Will Finn.Mosby’s father reported to 911 at 2:22 p.m. Thursday that his son had called him and told him he was in the rest area with a gunshot wound in his leg. Police searched the thick woods south of the rest area for several hours, but came up empty.Mosby is described as 6 feet 8 inches tall and 220 pounds, with blue eyes, brown hair and a fishhook tattoo on his neck. He has multiple felony warrants out of Lewis County for robbery and drug possession, Finn said.
On the WebThe “Give More 24!” window closes at 7 a.m., but you can always give to charity via the Community Foundation for Southwest Washington at https://www.cfsww.org/Ice-bucket challenges for charity? That’s so last month.A local, 24-hour, online crowdfunding event called “Give More 24!” began at 7 a.m. Thursday. Just after 5 p.m., the constantly updated website that tracked donations to nearly 100 local charities throughout the day had logged more than 1,200 individual gifts totalling nearly $260,000 for local charities.Final totals won’t be available until approximately noon Friday.Coordinated by the Community Foundation for Southwest Washington, the daylong campaign to activate new philanthropists at every level of income and generosity was in keeping with a new world of online giving, according to spokesman Maury Harris. The minimum donation was just $10.“Philanthropy is moving from analog to digital,” Harris said. “It is focusing on a younger generation that’s more comfortable online. That’s not our normal constituency, but our goal is to reach the whole community with the idea that everybody can be a philanthropist.”Nearly 90 groups signed up to be beneficiaries of the event. The Community Foundation made it not only easy but extra rewarding to make online donations on Thursday and into the wee hours Friday. Every donation will be automatically multiplied via a “stretch pool” of $75,000 contributed by clinical psychologist Candace Young and Nancy Lematta, the widow of businessman and philanthropist Wes Lematta.
Oklahoma State cornerback Ramon Richards (18) breaks up a pass intended for Washington wide receiver Brayden Lenius during the first half of the Cactus Bowl on Friday, Jan. 2, 2015, in Tempe, Ariz. (AP Photo/Matt York) TEMPE, Ariz. — Washington started the Cactus Bowl in practice mode, unable to get much of anything going while falling into a deep halftime hole.The Huskies managed to rev up in the second half, but never could make it all the way back.Washington fell behind by 17 points in a sluggish first half and had its second-half rally fall short in a 30-22 loss to Oklahoma State on Friday night.“For whatever reason, we didn’t have it in the first half,” Washington coach Chris Petersen said. “The second half they did, but it was too little, too late.”Oklahoma State (7-6) needed a late rally over rival Oklahoma in the season finale to become bowl eligible and played the Cactus Bowl without its most dynamic offensive player.The Cowboys closed out the season with a flourish behind freshman quarterback Mason Rudolph, with some offensive help from defensive lineman James Castleman.A freshman making his third start, Rudolph kept his composure against Washington’s vaunted front seven, overcoming three turnovers to hit 17 of 26 passes.Desmond Roland kept the Huskies off balance by tearing off big runs up the middle, finishing with 123 yards on 32 carries.Then, there was Castleman.Though he had never played offense before, the 300-pound defensive tackle lined up in the shotgun to score on a 1-yard run in the first half, helping Oklahoma State build a 17-point halftime lead.
What’s open and what’s closed on Presidents Day:• MAIL: Post offices closed Monday. The postal unit at Shell, 1605 N.W. Sixth Ave., Camas, is open 5 a.m. to 2 a.m. every day of the year. No home delivery except Express Mail.• GARBAGE: Waste Connections, in Vancouver and most of Clark County, will operate on its regular schedule Monday. In Camas, normal Monday collections will be made Tuesday with Tuesday’s regular collections.• PUBLIC LIBRARIES: Closed Monday.• PUBLIC SCHOOLS: Closed Monday.• COLLEGES: Clark College is open Monday. Washington State University Vancouver has no classes Monday, but offices will be open.• CLARK PUBLIC UTILITIES: Offices open Monday. For 24-hour customer service, call 360-992-3000. For outages or emergencies, call 360-992-8000.• GOVERNMENT OFFICES: Offices closed Monday. Washington Legislature in session.• PARKING METERS: On-street parking in Vancouver is free Monday.• BUSES: C-Tran buses follow reduced schedule Monday. TriMet buses, MAX, WES and Portland Streetcar follow regular schedule.• DRIVER’S LICENSING: Closed Monday.• EMISSIONS TESTING: Closed Monday.• VEHICLE LICENSING: Closed Monday.• FINANCIAL MARKETS: U.S. markets closed Monday.• BANKS: Most closed; check your bank for details. Some in-store branches may be open.• ZOO: Oregon Zoo open Monday.• MARSHALL COMMUNITY CENTER: Open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday.• FIRSTENBURG COMMUNITY CENTER: Open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday.• ANIMAL SHELTERS: Humane Society for Southwest Washington closed Monday. West Columbia Gorge Humane Society open regular hours Monday.• THE COLUMBIAN: Open regular hours, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on Monday. Circulation lines, 360-694-2312, open 4:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.
New Chief Executive vows to protect Macau’s gaming and tourism industry from harm In the International segment, revenue fell 1% at constant currency to US$172 million due to a 5% fall in gaming to US$81 million. Gaming sales were down 15% to US$30 million while product sales, including terminals, grew 4% to US$51 million.Lottery revenue was strong across the board, up 5% to US$74 million internationally and 3% to US$204 million in Italy, but Italy’s gaming revenue was down 13% to US$153 million.North America Lottery was stable at US$296 million while North America Gaming and Interactive fell 1% to US$140 million.“Our first quarter results confirm the consistent growth profile of our global lottery business and the progress we’ve made in sales of gaming machines, where global unit shipments increased 20%,” said IGT’s CEO, Marco Sala. “The results of our Italy operations are also noteworthy, with further growth in lottery and resilient machine gaming performance. As we look to the future, our focus remains on improving revenue and profits from gaming activities, innovating with new lottery games and technologies and pursuing emerging growth opportunities.” RelatedPosts Strong VIP growth sees Okada Manila GGR climb 72% in August Lack of premium mass strategy begs questions of SJM’s Grand Lisboa Palace launch: analysts Load More Declines in both its International and Italian business segments saw global gaming giant IGT’s financial results fall away in the three months to 31 March 2019, with revenue down 5% and operating income 10% compared with the prior year period.Consolidated revenue in 1Q19 was US$1.15 billion, representing a more steady 1% decline at constant currency, with net income of US$178 million and Adjusted EBITDA of US$417 million – down 4% in real terms but steady at constant currency.
70% of Macau gaming market driven by 400,000 premium players: brokerage RelatedPosts Load More Constance Hsu appointed Group COO of Sihanoukville’s Jin Bei Group Sihanoukville authorities threaten legal action against 10 building owners over demolition orders China is set to establish a consulate and an information center for Chinese nationals in Sihanoukville to bolster security and law enforcement and to improve awareness of Cambodia’s laws among Chinese nationals.The move follows a massive influx of Chinese into the city in recent years, with Preah Sihanouk province revealing earlier this month that more than 90% of all businesses in Sihanoukville are Chinese-owned, including 150 of its 156 hotels and guesthouses, 48 of its 62 operational casinos plus 41 karaoke bars, 46 massage parlors and 95% of its 436 restaurants. At the same time, rising crime rates across the city and serious safety violations at some new developments have raised concerns over the incredible speed of Sihanoukville’s expansion.According to The Phnom Penh Post, local officials have now asked China for help during a meeting between provincial governor Kuoch Chamroeun and Chinese ambassador Wang Wentian last week, with Wang agreeing to the request.“Provincial governor Kuoch Chamroeun requested the establishment of a consulate and a Chinese information center to raise awareness of Cambodia’s laws among Chinese nationals living and investing in Preah Sihanouk province,” said spokesperson Cheang Phearum.“The aim is to help them learn about Cambodia’s culture and laws. When a consulate is established in Preah Sihanouk province, it means there will always be someone there to provide accurate information and statistics about Chinese nationals living in the province.“A consulate will also make it easier for Chinese investors and tourists when issues arise in terms of security or other pressing concerns.”Cambodian National Research Organisation director Sok Sokhom told The Phnom Penh Post that the establishment of a Chinese consulate would provide a huge boost for overwhelmed local officials“By working closely together, it shows a concerted effort to resolve the issues that are bound to arise in the target areas,” he said.“If there continues to be no consulate like in the past, when there are issues, only Cambodian officials themselves in the area can enforce the law – without the participation of partner countries’ law enforcement agents. When a consulate is established, joint mechanisms will be devised to achieve common goals and solve issues.”Five Chinese nationals were charged last month after a new Sihanoukville hotel development collapsed, killing 28 people, while in March a casino was ordered to close due to multiple health and safety breaches including pumping raw sewerage straight into the sea.
New Zealand-based telecommunications organisation Spark has committed to a higher pay benchmark for staff.Under the organisation’s Spark Pay scheme, all non-commission based full-time employees will earn a minimum of $40,000 (£30,729) a year.Commission-based employees will be able to earn an average of $42,000 (£32,266) a year, although take home pay could exceed this if employees outperform targets.The organisation, which employs 5,000 full and part-time members of staff, has committed to the pay benchmark with the aim of ensuring all staff receive a fair and competitive wage.Thus far, the organisation’s pay policy has benefitted 250 employees, who have received pay rises over the last two years to bring them up to the higher level.Staff also receive an employee benefits package that is valued at an estimated $2,500 (£1,920) annually.Benefits offered at Spark include $150 (£115)-worth of Spark account credit, life insurance, income protection, and critical illness insurance, an employee share scheme, holiday purchase scheme, paid volunteering leave, and a flexible working policy, which includes adjusted hours during the summer so that Friday afternoons can be taken off.Danielle George, general manager of HR at Spark, said: “We’ve looked at what other [organisations] have done or are doing, but decided our best approach was to talk to our own people, listen to them and figure out what works best for them; and the [organisation]. As one of the largest technology employers in New Zealand, we believe it’s vitally important that our people are paid at a level that recognises the complexity of our industry, yet is at a level for us to remain competitive.“We want to do the right thing for our people and to attract the best people to a career in Spark: if that sets a standard that encourages others to follow, that’s got to be a good thing for New Zealand. We’ve tried to come up with innovative ways of rewarding, recognising and compensating our people.“We have revised our entire value proposition, exploring how we can best deliver base pay and meaningful benefits, all designed to meet the needs of a very diverse workforce.”
POMPANO BEACH, FLA. (WSVN) – Police are looking for a man who broke into and drove off with a truck in Pompano Beach.Surveillance cameras captured the crime outside a business on South Dixie Highway near Southwest Third Street, two weeks ago.A man is seen on the footage breaking in through the passenger door of the truck and driving off.If you have any information on this theft, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) – Police are investigating after, they said, a man’s body was found inside a car parked in a Northwest Miami-Dade business, Tuesday.The body was found in the parking lot of a car rental facility, on Northwest 42nd Avenue and 26th Street.Police have identified the deceased as 48-year-old Juan Alberto Miraldo. They are investigating his death as a homicide.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) – More than half of Broward County’s schoolteachers will be receiving what could be the highest raises for teachers in the state this year, officials said.Over 50 percent of the teachers will receive a five percent raise. Top teachers, meanwhile will get a $2,000 increase.Officials said the raises will be retroactive to July 2016. “We absolutely want to continue to make it clear that our focus is to support our teachers and continue to invest in them,” said Broward Public Schools Superintendent Robert Runcie.Additional gains for teachers involve more planning time and improvements to how and when teachers can be evaluated.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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