MGM Resorts is MLBs official gaming partner after NBA NHL

first_imgNEW YORK — MGM Resorts has made its third deal in four months with a major U.S. sports league, becoming Major League Baseball’s official gaming partner in the U.S. and Japan.Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred said Tuesday that MGM will become an MLB-authorized gaming operator and will promote itself with teams and on the MLB Network, MLB.com and the MLB At Bat app.MGM in August became the exclusive official gaming partner of the NBA and WNBA, and the first official sports betting partner of the NHL last month.___More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_SportsThe Associated Presslast_img

H1N1 vaccine may now cover more people but still inadequate UN warns

25 September 2009Global production capacity for H1N1 flu vaccines now stand at 3 billion doses per year, 2 billion less than projected in the spring, but potentially covering more people – even if inadequate – since a single dose may be sufficient, according to the United Nations health agency. “These supplies will still be inadequate to cover a world population of 6.8 billion people in which virtually everyone is susceptible to infection by a new and readily contagious virus,” the World Health Organization (WHO) warned in its latest update. “Global manufacturing capacity for influenza vaccines is limited, inadequate and not readily augmented.”Noting that pandemic vaccines have their greatest impact as a preventive strategy when administered before or near the peak incidence of cases in an outbreak, it praised both regulatory authorities and vaccine manufacturers for their “extraordinary efforts to expedite the availability of vaccines.”Many affluent countries have previously contracted with manufacturers to obtain sufficient vaccine supplies to cover their entire populations, but most low- and middle-income countries lack the financial resources to compete for an early share of limited supplies, WHO said. Vaccine supplies in these countries will largely depend on donations from manufacturers and other countries.Last week, donations of pandemic vaccines for developing countries were announced by the United States in concert with Australia, Brazil, France, Italy, New Zealand, Norway, Switzerland and the United Kingdom. “Similar support from additional countries is anticipated and warmly welcomed,” WHO said, noting that it will be coordinating their distribution, expected to begin in November.The agency also stressed the need for early treatment with the antiviral drugs, oseltamivir or zanamivir, for patients who are at increased risk of developing complications, have severe illness or show worsening signs and symptoms.At the same time, it warned clinicians to be alert to two situations that carry a high risk for the emergence of viruses resistant to oseltamivir – in patients with severely compromised or suppressed immune systems who have prolonged illness, have received oseltamivir treatment but still have evidence of persistent viral replication; and in people who receive oseltamivir preventively after exposure to someone and then develop the illness. read more

World Bank launches green index of businesses in emerging markets

10 December 2009The private sector arm of the World Bank today launched the first ever eco-friendly stock market index that allows investors to track the carbon efficiency of companies doing business in emerging economies. The private sector arm of the World Bank today launched the first ever eco-friendly stock market index that allows investors to track the carbon efficiency of companies doing business in emerging economies.In partnership with the giant financial services corporation Standard and Poor’s (S&P), the International Finance Corporation (IFC) established the S&P/IFC Investable Emerging Markets Index expecting it to mobilize more than $1 billion for carbon-efficient companies over the next three years.The pioneering index is meant to encourage carbon-based competition among emerging-market businesses, give carbon-efficient companies access to long-term investors and result in lower carbon emissions in developing countries, as well as reducing the carbon footprint of investors’ portfolios.“With growing pressure on investors to diversify and maintain returns by increasing exposure to emerging markets, and with more and more investors keen to demonstrate a preference for sustainability… IFC hopes that the launch of this index will help ensure that carbon efficiency is rewarded,” said IFC Vice-President for Business Advisory Services Rachel Kyte.The announcement comes on the fourth day of the United Nations climate change conference in Copenhagen, where over 100 heads of State and government are slated to convene next week in a bid to wrap up an international pact to curb greenhouse gas emissions. read more

Famine warning signs must never again be ignored as they were in

“Not only must the international emergency response system become more flexible in responding to early warnings, we must have more regular support for risk reduction at national and community level,” Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s Special Representative for Disaster Risk Reduction Margareta Wahlström said of the non-governmental organization (NGO) initiative launched at a mini-summit on Somalia at UN Headquarters last Saturday. The campaign – Never Again: A Charter to End Extreme Hunger – has five essential elements: fixing the flaws of the international emergency system; supporting local food production; ensuring services and protection for the poorest; making available food everyone can afford; and reducing armed violence and conflict.Tens of thousands of Somalis have already starved to death and more than 3.2 million others are on the brink of starvation in a drought and famine that has affected 13.3 million people there and in three other countries, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya. “The Horn of Africa crisis is a wake-up call for aid agencies, governments and donors alike. Given the collective experience of responding to drought emergencies over the last 50 years it seems almost beyond belief that we are once more desperately fighting a drought-fuelled famine which is threatening the lives and livelihoods of 13 million people,” said Ms. Wahlström, who heads the UN’s disaster risk reduction office (UNISDR). “As Oxfam, Save the Children, ONE and others rightly point out in this charter, all the warning signs were there in the Horn of Africa two years ago but the warnings were not acted on. The result is that more lives will be lost and more money will be spent because there was little or no support to timely and low-cost measures that would have reduced the risk of drought turning into a famine.” She particularly welcomed the charter’s call for disaster risk reduction and climate change adaptation to be put at the heart of sustainable development. The signatories commit to linking non-political, needs-based early warning signs of disasters with a timely and appropriate response, with donors supporting national and community preparedness plans to avert the worst effects such as acute malnutrition. The charter criticizes “decades of under-investment in small scale food producers and ineffective management of natural resources” and calls for longer-term plans to fight food insecurity and malnutrition.The signatories commit to protect at an absolute minimum the poorest 10 per cent of the population from the impact of food crises with safety nets, including direct cash payments based on need alone, specifically addressing the food and nutrition needs of women and children. They also commit to scaling up strategic and emergency food reserves, tackling the causes of high and volatile food prices, and providing sufficient aid based on need where insecurity is destroying the chances of life and sustainable development.Meanwhile the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) reported today that over 57,000 Somali households had now received monthly food rations, and almost 30,000 households had benefitted from hot meals at transit points.About 20,000 acutely malnourished children were being treated through feeding centres, and UNICEF was working to expand to reach over 30,000 per month, spokesperson Marixie Mercado told a news briefing in Geneva.The number of people overall receiving food aid nearly doubled from July to August and is on pace to do so again in September, Corinne Momal-Vanian, Director of the UN Information Service in Geneva, told the briefing. In July, 770,000 Somalis received food aid and that figure stood at 1.39 million as of 19 September. 27 September 2011Stressing that the warning signs of impending disaster were evident, but ignored, long before drought and famine began killing tens of thousands of people in the Horn of Africa, the United Nations today swung its support behind a ‘Never Again’ campaign to end extreme hunger. read more

Income splitting with a twist the key to a fairer tax system

OTTAWA — A controversial federal policy that would allow families to split their incomes for tax purposes would make a lot of sense, as long as it is accompanied by other measures so that the benefits would be shared by all kinds of families, says University of Calgary economist Jack Mintz.In a research paper, Mintz and doctoral student Matt Krzepkowski argue that the current tax system is unfair because it penalizes single-earner families.“Given that Canada’s income system aims to treat people in similar circumstances as equally as possible, it is certainly time to let couples split their income so they do not face a penalty in higher tax rates than those faced by couples bringing home the same amount of total pay,” they write.But they say the tax reform should also recognize that single-earner families have some advantages that dual-earners do not, such as more unpaid time spent raising children and taking care of the home.One way to account for this would be to change the way the basic personal tax exemption works, said Mintz, director of the university’s School of Public Policy.Under the current rules, one spouse can transfer the unused portion of the exemption to the other spouse. If Ottawa were to require both spouses to be earning income in order to qualify for the transfer, it would smooth out some of the rough edges of the income-splitting proposal, he said.“We particularly have a twist on the original Conservative proposal of splitting income up to $50,000 that I think would achieve quite a bit in terms of equal taxation of different types of families with children,” Mintz told an audience of MPs and others.Critics have said the policy would do little for low-income families and would encourage women to stay at home rather than join the paid workforce.The Krzepkowski-Mintz analysis recognizes these points, but argues they can be fixed.“In our opinion, introducing income-splitting, along with restrictions on the transferability of the basic tax exemption, is a far better approach for personal taxation, as it directly increases equality between family earnings and corrects for labour-market distortions due to home production provided by at-home spouses,” the authors write.The Conservatives pitched the family income-splitting idea in the last federal election campaign, saying they would allow individuals to transfer up to $50,000 to a spouse as long as they had at least one dependent child under 18. However, since the measure would cost billions every year in foregone tax revenue, the Conservatives said they would not implement the measures until the federal deficit was eliminated.The Conservatives have pegged the cost at about $2.5 billion in lost tax revenue, but Mintz said it would cost somewhat less if the government were to adopt his proposal.The research paper raised eyebrows even before it was published Monday, mainly because it was being showcased on Parliament Hill by the socially conservative Institute for Marriage and Family Canada, and co-hosted by Conservative MP Stella Ambler and Liberal MP John McKay.The NDP’s Niki Ashton said the event makes it look like Liberals are backing a policy that would erode a woman’s position in the family.But McKay said he is personally “agnostic” on income-splitting, and his party is inclined to be against it for now. By co-sponsoring the event on Monday, McKay said he hoped to help de-politicize the issue.“There’s maybe some hope here that we can take the edge off the wedge,” he said.The institute’s executive director, Andrea Mrozek, said the event is meant to explore and debate tax policy — a discussion that is meant to help voters of all stripes.The Canadian Press read more

Parties pushing equality agenda could face gender fatigue from voters expert

OTTAWA — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau received a lot of attention with his line about the calendar year when asked why he named an equal number of men and women to cabinet after his newly elected Liberal government was sworn in.Nearly four years later, the Liberals have made the push for gender equality a defining feature of their mandate, their message and the personality of their prime minister, which could help — and hurt — them on the campaign trail.Kate Bezanson, an expert on feminist policy, said any government that sets out to disrupt the status quo on equality issues can find itself vulnerable to criticism on two fronts: from those who think they are spending too much energy in that area, and those who think they are not doing enough.“There can be a kind of fatigue with those kinds of policies that can sometimes be received as perhaps less understanding of the broader constituency that might be apprehensive about enhancing gender equality,” said Bezanson, an associate professor of sociology at Brock University.On the other hand, setting expectations for change so high can leave a lot of people feeling disappointed.Story continues belowThis advertisement has not loaded yet,but your article continues below. Liberals’ feminist agenda undermined by their reaction to cabinet resignations: opposition Trudeau’s cabinet may be gender-balanced, but the male ministers still dominate the question period Andrew Coyne: Trudeau cabinet should be based on merit, not gender Katherine Scott, a senior researcher at the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives, said the Liberals made some big moves internationally, such as dedicating $1.4 billion annually to the health of women and girls, including sexual and reproductive health rights, beginning in 2023 as part of an announcement at this spring’s Women Deliver conference.She also applauded the Liberals for their $100-million gender-based anti-violence strategy, proactive pay equity legislation, the national inquiry into missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls, and for bringing gender-based analysis into the budget-making process.“What does that mean for women on the street? That will play out over a much longer time. So when you look at those sorts of questions, I’m not sure how much traction we’ve gained,” she said.David Coletto, chief executive of Ottawa-based polling firm Abacus Data, said he does not expect much campaign talk about feminism — at least not beyond the Liberals trying to convince voters the Conservatives are against abortion rights.But he does think gender can play into the issue of affordability — a focus for all political parties in the Oct. 21 election.The Conservatives made a play in that area this summer by promising to introduce a non-refundable tax credit for new mothers and fathers receiving employment insurance benefits while on maternity or parental leave.I’m not sure how much traction we’ve gainedThe New Democrats, who have devoted an entire section of their election platform to advancing gender equity, are once again promising universal, affordable, not-for-profit child care right across the country.Coletto, also said the data suggests female voters, who made up about 52 per cent of the electorate in 2015, tend to remain undecided longer than men.That means political parties will, and should be, thinking about how to bring them on side.“They are obviously going to have a huge impact on the election in how they react to the parties,” Coletto said.Meanwhile, some women’s advocacy groups are hoping to place gender issues more squarely on the agenda.A coalition calling itself Up for Debate is pushing for a national televised debate on the topic, an effort that failed in the 2015 election after Thomas Mulcair, then the NDP leader, backed away from an earlier commitment because former Conservative prime minister Stephen Harper was not going to join the others onstage.This time, NDP Leader Jagmeet Singh and Green Party Leader Elizabeth May have agreed to participate, but organizers have not yet received any commitment from Trudeau or Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.Obviously there has been a lot more attention to women’s rights issues under this Liberal government mandateLauren Ravon, director of policy and campaigns at Oxfam Canada, said the landscape has changed when it comes to the role feminism plays in politics.“Obviously there has been a lot more attention to women’s rights issues under this Liberal government mandate, as well as attention in the public sphere,” she said.A debate, Ravon said, would be a way for leaders to challenge each other on these issues and get their positions on the record: “What are the promises this time around? What is the plan?”Bezanson said that while much of the talk about the feminism of the Liberal government has centred around Trudeau himself, she thinks one of the biggest changes, which could survive a change in government, is a stronger commitment to gender-based analysis across all departments.That involves thinking about how every program and policy impact men and women in different ways, while also taking things like age, income, ethnicity and other intersecting factors into account.“The policy record of this government is the most feminist that Canada has ever had,” she said. read more

Ohio State wide receivers impress in fall camp

Cody Cousino / For The LanternThen-junior Corey Brown avoids the defense during a game against Michigan on Nov. 24, 2012 at Ohio Stadium. OSU won, 26-21.Prior to coming to Ohio State, Urban Meyer’s teams had at least one thing in common: a healthy pass offense.It is an area that Meyer is looking to improve on in his second season at OSU, and he is counting on the wide receivers to grow and develop this fall into a group that could be similar to what he had when he was the coach of the Florida Gators.While Meyer was at Florida, the Gators only had one season where they averaged less than 213 yards per game through the air, a total that in his first season at Ohio State the Buckeyes fell far short of.During their undefeated season, OSU failed to reach the 200 yard mark through the air in all but four games, including only throwing for 97 yards during a 21-14 overtime victory at Wisconsin Nov. 17.Part of the problem with the Buckeyes’ passing game last year was the receiving corps, which only had two players who racked up more than 300 receiving yards. But with another year under their belts, along with an influx of young talent from Meyer’s second recruiting class, the OSU wide receivers are looking to make a big difference in the offense this season.Wide receivers coach Zach Smith said the receivers were weak last year, but in the offseason they have grown to become threats in the offense.“They’ve had trials, tribulations, had hard times, had great successes and so they have grown and learned from mistakes to the point where now they’re able to be a mature group and able to use those learning points in the past to make sure they don’t happen again and grow from them,” Smith said. “I’m pleased with the growth from them in the last year.”Junior quarterback Braxton Miller hinted that he’s looking to spread the ball around more this year, with his top two receivers senior Corey “Philly” Brown and junior Devin Smith returning this season.“We did less throwing last year, and there is going to be a lot of throwing this year,” Miller said.Brown, who led the team with 669 yards and 60 catches in 2012, is expecting a big jump in the team’s offensive production.“I think this year you can expect our offense to shoot up the charts if we keep doing what we are doing and try to eliminate the stupid mistakes, we could be one of the top offenses in the country,” Brown said.A lot of talk from fall camp surrounds junior Evan Spencer and his development into a potential star receiver.“What (Spencer has) shown flashes of at times, he’s really done consistently,” Zach Smith said. “He’s probably the one receiver that I’m most pleased with the step he’s took. That’s not to take away from Philly or Devin or guys that have taken steps. Evan has really taken a bigger step.”Offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Tom Herman made it clear Spencer is a starter and the rest of the receivers have also improved this fall.“The first thing that I’ve said earlier in camp was that our veterans are improved,” Herman said. “They’re better. Evan Spencer’s had a great camp. Evan Spencer’s a starting wide receiver at The Ohio State University. Philly Brown is better, Devin Smith is better. We’re better.”At OSU Media Day Aug. 11, Meyer said the top three receivers on the team were Devin Smith, Brown and Spencer, but that Spencer was having a great camp.An issue Spencer said he had last year was with hitting his routes and winning balls in the air, but has become much more confident as a player heading into the 2013 season.“Myself personally, I feel like I’m developing a little more as a route runner,” Spencer said Aug. 10. “That was my main thing this year that I was focusing on, making sure I am lowering out of my cuts, making sure every time the ball is up in the air I’m going up and getting it.”Spencer said he has taken on more of a leadership role this offseason, trying to get some of the younger players to feel more comfortable in the offense.“As an older guy, I take it upon myself to make sure that they know what they’re doing,” Spencer said. “I try to pride myself and make sure that they know what they’re doing all the time so they can go 100 percent.”Known as a big play receiver last year when he averaged 20.6 yards per catch, Devin Smith is hoping to have a big year with Miller throwing him the ball.“We talked all summer, trained all summer, we know where he’s going to place the ball, how I’m going to run my route and things like that,” Smith said about his relationship with Miller. “So it’s all about timing and we certainly got that down.”Spencer likes what he sees out of his fellow receivers, and said the offense is starting to come together.“Devin is running great routes with good speed and getting hands off, and Philly (is) explosive as always,” Spencer said. “It’s just good to see it’s all coming along.”Zach Smith is looking for his guys to have a big year, and help Miller improve on the weak passing numbers from last season.“Every guy that we’re counting on, every guy that we think is gonna be a contributing factor in our offense is capable and has shown the capability to be a dominate player,” Zach Smith said. “At least a good, functional player. We just need to see that consistently from every rep from every guy that we’re counting on.” read more

Best independent schools in the UK Compare league table results for GCSEs

Westminster School is at the top of the tree when it comes to GCSE performance among independent schools, according to the latest available data.The private boys’ school achieved a 98.61 per cent A*-C/9-7 rate – one of four schools to surpass 95 per cent for the top grades, according to the Independent Schools Council (ISC).Our interactive league table allows you to search these results by school and compare private schools of your choice against one another.Some independent schools decline to release their results in this fashion, so it may be possible that there is a better performing school out there. However, Westminster School is the best among the roughly 300 schools who entered at least 25 candidates and agreed to have their results published.Search for the best independent schools for 2019 A-level resultsSearch for the best grammar schoolsSearch for your school or town to find out where it ranks As many as 95.6 per cent of independent school entries received a C/4 grade or higher, compared to 67.3 per cent for all schools nationally and up 0.1 points compared to last year.The proportion of relevant entries that were awarded a level 9 – the highest available under the new reformed system – was 23.1 per cent this year, more than five times the national average.Barnaby Lenon, chairman of ISC, said: “Independent school pupils and their teachers should feel incredibly proud of their achievements, especially in light of the significant exam reforms that have taken place – the impact of which is still being felt by many schools regardless of sector.“It is very impressive to see such a high proportion of entries awarded a grade 9. Additionally, and given many independent schools are not academically selective, the fact nearly every exam entry was passed (C/4 or higher) is noteworthy. This year’s Year 11 GCSE exam results have revealed that nearly two thirds – some 62.1 per cent – of GCSE entries at ISC schools were awarded an A/7 or higher. This is nearly three times the national average of 20.8 per cent.In total, 20 schools with more than 25 students managed to get 90 per cent of their entries gaining an A/7 or above, according to the ISC. Guildford High School for Girls and North London Collegiate School came second and third in our table with 97.27 per cent and 96.29 per cent of grades at A/7 or better respectively.King’s College School in Wimbledon came in fourth place, with 95.88 per cent of entries achieving either a 9-7 or A/A*. This is the third year since changes in the GCSE regime meant that a new numerical system was used to mark several subjects.In an attempt to toughen up GCSEs, the new system uses grades nine to one, rather than A* to G – with grades 7-9 being equivalent to A/A* in the old system.The new grades are being phased in to account for more and more subjects each year. “Our schools are committed to providing a broad education and offering extra-curricular activities, all with a view to enabling every child to find the right path so they can fulfil their potential.”Search for small independent schools for 2019 GCSE resultsYou can also search the following table to compare the performance of schools fielding fewer than 25 candidates. Those that field fewer than 10 are excluded from our rankings altogether. You can also:Search for the best primary schools near youSearch for the best schools near you for GCSE resultsSearch for the best schools near you for A-levelsNote: Schools have been ranked by their rate for A*-A or 9-1 grades, for both GCSE and IGCSE results combined to two decimal places.*Results for d’Overbroeck’s school are for UK candidates only. d’Overbroeck’s also has a separate international section where pupils complete a one year GCSE programme. Results for international students, for whom English is not their first language, are not included in the statistics stated in this article. If you’re having problems with this interactive on our mobile app, click here to load the article in your phone’s internet browser. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. read more

Coast Guard seizes 6 million worth of cocaine

first_imgThe Coast Guard offloaded $6 million worth of cocaine in the Dominican Republic, Tuesday.The cocaine was seized when a Customs and Border Protection plane spotted a suspicious boat on Dec. 14.Three smugglers were also detained.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img