Letters to the Editor for Wednesday, May 15

first_imgLanotte will make district best it can beI support Patricia Lanotte for election to the Niskayuna school board and ask the district’s voters to join me in voting for Pat on May 21.As a financial analyst, Pat understands budgets inside and out. She knows that a school board must track expenditures throughout the school year to ensure that our tax dollars are being spent appropriately for the education of our students.Pat understands the need for long-range planning. The educational and mental-health issues every school district faces are ongoing and require a multi-year vision with community input. How else can any community overcome the overwhelming obstacles that schools and families grapple with daily?Pat knows the issues and articulates pertinent questions and appropriate, sensible solutions. With her experience in business, in the military and as a former Niskayuna school board member, Pat has already made positive contributions to our district. She keeps the focus on serving all students.She’s committed to providing sufficient teaching and support staffing in our schools so that no child is overlooked or under-served. As Pat says, “It is my belief that as a community, we are no stronger than our most vulnerable child.” The Constitution is not racist documentChristopher Ognibene’s May 5 letter notes that Frederick Douglass once described the Constitution as “wicked” for its supposed racism. But he ignores the fact that Douglass later took quite a different view.In a July 5, 1852, oration, Douglass said that, in the Constitution, “there is neither warrant, license, nor sanction of the hateful thing [slavery]; but, interpreted as it ought to be interpreted, the Constitution is a glorious liberty document…” He continued, “Take the Constitution according to its plain reading, and I defy the presentation of a single pro-slavery clause in it. On the other hand it will be found to contain principles and purposes, entirely hostile to the existence of slavery.”That it took our country so long to get from 1789 to emancipation is a grievous wrong, but it does not indict the Constitution itself.The letter also perpetuates a common misunderstanding about the Constitution’s three-fifths clause.The purpose of this clause, while on its face hateful, was to prevent slave-holding states from claiming slaves as full persons, which would only have increased those states’ population numbers and thus their number of seats in the House of Representatives. The three-fifths compromise was devised to reduce the representation, and thus the power, of the pro-slavery faction.Jessica Hornik EvansAlplausMore from The Daily Gazette:Cuomo calls for clarity on administering vaccineEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the census That name is fascism.Anthony J. SantoRotterdam With your support, Patricia Lanotte will work tirelessly on behalf of the community to help make our schools the best they can be.Please vote on Tuesday, May 21, at Niskayuna High School. Polls will be open from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m.Stephanie SchechterNiskayuna Greatness achieved by correcting courseThere are many slogans being bandied around in America today. Among the emptiest is “Make America Great Again.”Were we great when women were denied suffrage? When Jim Crow laws and less blatant forms of discrimination were common across the country? When American citizens of Japanese descent were interred in concentration camps during World War II?Did it make us great when our use of Agent Orange poisoned many Vietnamese and American soldiers and the environment of southeast Asia? The same can be asked about land mines, which are still causing death and injury in that area. Are we proud that we have used torture in defiance of the Geneva Accords?Do we look with pride at our destruction of Iraq and our justifying it with claims of non-existent Iraqi weapons of mass destruction while looking the other way at the atrocities perpetrated by our friends, the Saudis? Tully has experience to address needsHaving worked with Kim Tully on Rosendale Elementary’s PTO board and parented with her on the sidelines of t-ball games and at publishing parties in classrooms, I have come to know her as the exact person the Niskayuna school district needs on its Board of Education.Kim has worked collaboratively with members of the PTO, community organizations and athletic groups, with the sole goal of bettering the lives of Niskayuna’s children. She unwaveringly supports opportunities that enhance students’ experiences in our schools, and she’s an advocate for strong academics, reliable mental health services and enrichment for all who attend school here.Kim’s already substantial work in our community will allow her to serve with a clear understanding of where our district thrives and where it can improve, and Kim is someone willing to take on what faces Niskayuna school district in its future.I think the absolute best leaders for our schools are educators themselves. As a certified teacher and director of educational advisement at Tully Rinckey PLLC, Kim will be able to address the district’s needs, challenges and goals in a way that sees all sides of an issue — certainly a unique perspective in this year’s election.It is for these and so many more reasons that I will be voting for Kim Tully to represent all of us on Niskayuna’s Board of Education.Jessica LaFexNiskayuna Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionIsrael should honor Holocaust victimsAs I write this, it is Yom HaShoah, or Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day. People of all countries around the world, especially Israel, have been advocating messages of tolerance, humanity and the overall theme of “never again.” Nothing that I disagree with.But as they advocate these messages, Israel directly contradicts itself with its treatment of Palestinians. Putting aside for now the details of Israel’s illegal settlements in Palestine, in the present conflict, thousands of Palestinians (not Hamas fighters, but citizens, including children) have been killed by the Israeli government in bombings on the Gaza Strip in schools, hospitals, houses, etc. or being shot by soldiers of the IDF.So many of those not killed have been maimed, especially by IDF snipers, which according to the diagnosis of doctors in Gaza was done intentionally.And as we speak, Palestinian children as young as 12 are being held in Israeli military detention centers for small crimes like throwing stones. And some Israeli politicians have called for a genocide of the Palestinians.I wish Israel would practice what it preaches to the world on Yom HaShoah. Its treatment of Palestinian civilians is a heinous insult to the memory of those who perished in the Holocaust 70 years ago. And the idea that criticizing Israel for these war crimes is anti-Semitic is not only absurd, but also cheapens the charge of antisemitism. As a letter written by Holocaust survivors in response to the 2014 Gaza bombings said: “Never again must mean never again for anyone.”Matt OillGlenville Does it make us great to have a president who alienates long-standing allies, praises dictators and actually said he “fell in love” with one of the most cruel and absolute dictators in history?I hope the questions are rhetorical. True greatness lies in recognizing past errors and correcting course.To pursue greatness means seeking solutions to the problems that face not only our citizens, but the world’s citizens.National wealth should be used to provide a decent education, health care and child care for all Americans.Our relations with other nations must be governed by cooperation with those who share our values and goals. Greatness is a set of goals worth striving toward and includes grappling with climate change, eliminating nuclear weapons, insuring human rights and dignity for all, and preserving as much of our natural environment as possible.It will never be achieved by pandering to wealthy elites or shouts about “walls” to keep the “others” out.These tactics have a history as ugly as their name.last_img read more

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Retail Quay to retail success

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General knowledge

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Industrial – Market cabled and willing

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Green joins up with Allders takeover bid

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Indonesia revives excise plan on plastics, dirty vehicles and sweet drinks

first_imgSeveral provinces across Indonesia have announced a ban on plastic bags, the latest ones being Jakarta and Bali, with consumers’ and producers’ awareness of sustainable consumption on the rise.The Finance Ministry’s Customs and Excise Directorate General is planning to slap a plastic duty of Rp 30,000 per kilogram on plastic producers and importers, translating into Rp 200 duties per plastic sheet.Plastic bags will cost Rp 450 to Rp 500 per sheet after duties. The government has been planning to impose an excise on plastics since 2017 but has yet to receive approval from lawmakers.Indonesia, the world’s second-largest marine polluter, accumulates about 1.3 million tons of plastic waste every year, of which 70 percent goes to landfills, 15 percent ends up in rivers and oceans and only 10 to 15 percent is recycled. Indonesia is planning to impose an excise on plastics, fossil-fuel vehicles and sweet drinks in a move aimed at reducing their adverse environmental and health effects, Finance Minister Sri Mulyani Indrawati has said.She said the planned excise would reduce plastic consumption by up to 50 percent, adding the government would likely receive an excise of Rp 1.6 trillion (US$116.6 million) each year.“We are hoping that this will make plastic producers transform into producers of environmentally friendly goods,” the minister told House Commission XI overseeing financial affairs. Sri Mulyani said the excise only made sense today as it would unify regulations recently issued across the country. Indofood, Danone and Mayora are the top three producers of plastic waste in Indonesia, according to The Brand Audit Report 2019 by Break Free from Plastic. Top corporations have joined forces in driving the transition to a circular economy by boosting their recycling efforts to reduce plastic packaging waste at landfills in the country.Sri Mulyani on Wednesday also asked lawmakers for approval to impose an excise on fossil-fuel vehicles, saying the pollution in big cities influenced the government’s decision to devise a plan on limiting consumption.“Every vehicle that produces CO2 emissions is subject to the excise except electric vehicles, mass transportation and state-owned vehicles, as well as vehicles for exports,” said the minister, adding that local producers and importers were subject to multi-tariff duties.She added the government would likely receive Rp 15.7 trillion for taxing high-emissions vehicles.The Finance Ministry is also planning to put duties on sweet drinks to reduce the number of diabetes cases in the country, one of the main causes of death among Indonesians. Sri Mulyani also cited the need for people to live a healthy lifestyle.”There are a lot of countries that put duties on dangerous goods including sweet drinks,” Sri Mulyani said. “If approved by the parliament, we will impose duties on ready-to-drink beverages and powdered beverages that contain sugar, excluding non-manufactured drinks and exports.”The government would impose duties of Rp 1,500 per liter for packaged tea and Rp 2,500 for carbonated beverages such as Coca-Cola and energy drinks, she added. The government was likely to receive Rp 6.25 trillion from such duties, the minister added.The House’s Commission XI has responded to the government’s excise plan by agreeing to immediate duties on plastic bags. “The House’s Commission XI requests that the government create a road map that expands other new excise objects,” a commission document shows.The Finance Ministry is due to respond to the commission’s decision within seven working days to further proceed with next steps, which may include deliberation on the new excise regulation on plastic bags.Topics :last_img read more

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Trouble breaks out in AEON Mall, JGC as residents blame developers for flooding

first_imgHeri said the situation was calm as of Tuesday noon.“We have apprehended residents suspected of causing damage. Meanwhile, other residents have returned to their homes,” he went on to say.Heri added that the residents’ representatives had entered into discussions with JGC developers and officials from the subdistrict regarding the flooding in their area. (hol) Topics : Trouble broke out at Jakarta Garden City (JGC) township residential complex in Cakung, East Jakarta on Tuesday, as local residents blamed the complex developer for causing floods that inundated their homes following a heavy downpour across the city overnight.Dozens of people living around JGC gathered at the AEON mall – located within the property area — and the property management office. Violence broke out and windows were broken in the building.AEON Mall is a shopping area inside JGC. The township project was officially launched in September 2017. The chief of East Jakarta Police’s criminal investigation department, Adj. Sr. Comr. Heri Purnomo, said the mob attacking the mall and the office were local residents who lived around the township project. They suffered from massive flooding after heavy rain on Monday night.“They think that the housing development [at JGC] has caused flooding in their homes. They demand the developers solve the flooding problem,” Heri said on Tuesday.Read also: Despite regulations, Jakarta homeowners concrete over green spacesVideos purporting to show the trouble have been circulating on social media. A Twitter user, @Manispolos3, shared a video accompanied by a caption: “People attack the marketing office of JGC in Cakung because [they believe] JGC’s embankment has caused flooding at Tambun Rengas kampung in East Cakung subdistrict, East Jakarta.”center_img Despite the heavy rain since Monday midnight, JGC was not inundated by floodwater.Another Twitter user, @sjifa, wrote the reason why JGC did not got flooded despite the heavy rain was because the developers had elevated the land by some 3 to 5 meters.“JGC doesn’t get flooded because it guarantees it is 1,000 percent flood-free, but the kampungs around JGC are submerged. Everything has changed since the JGC was built,” @sjifa claimed on Monday.last_img read more

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McKinsey, Nikken Sekkei, AECOM hired to design Indonesia’s new capital

first_imgThe government has estimated that the new capital would cost Rp 466 trillion (US$34.06 billion) and has declared it would finance one-fifth of that through the state budget.Jokowi said that public money would fully fund the construction of the 5,600-ha downtown area of the new capital, where the new presidential palace and other government buildings would sit.The government previously appointed Blair, Son and UAE Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammad bin Zayed al Nahyan to the steering committee for the project.It was earlier revealed that the UAE government was prepared to invest $22.8 billion in Indonesia through a sovereign wealth fund, together with SoftBank and the United States International Development Finance Corporation.Topics : The Indonesian government is involving three international consulting firms in developing the masterplan of the country’s new capital city, which is to be located in East Kalimantan.Coordinating Maritime Affairs and Investment Minister Luhut Binsar Pandjaitan said on Friday that American engineering company AECOM, consulting firm McKinsey & Company and Japanese architectural and engineering firm Nikken Sekkei would design the city, which is to feature the latest technology and be environmentally friendly at the same time.Sepaku Village, Penajam Paser Utara Regency, East Kalimantan, will be the location of the nation’s capital. (JP/Gede Dharma ) McKinsey has been hired to assist the National Development Planning Agency, while Japanese conglomerate SoftBank, which has pledged to invest in the project, will work with Nikken Sekkei.“[The consulting firms] have experience designing large cities,” said Luhut during the sidelines of a meeting on the megaproject that was also attended by former British prime minister Tony Blair and SoftBank founder and chief executive officer Masayoshi Son.Read also: Jokowi’s grand vision for new capitalThe Indonesian government attracted global attention when it announced in August that it would move its capital from the flood-prone and sinking Jakarta on Java Island to a 256,000-hectare forested area straddling the regencies of North Penajam Paser and Kutai Kartanegara in East Kalimantan on Borneo, an island that it shares with Malaysia and Brunei Darussalam.last_img read more

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PREMIUMBogor develops local village into nutmeg center to spur tourism, economy

first_imgLog in with your social account West-Java bogor nutmeg agriculture agriculture-tourism Linkedin Topics : LOG INDon’t have an account? Register here In a bid to boost urban farming and promote tourism, the Bogor administration in West Java has turned a local village into a center for nutmeg production and hopefully, a popular tourist destination for the City of Rain.Many residents of Kampung Buntar in Muarasari subdistrict, South Bogor district, have already been running home-based industries that produce processed nutmeg. Inspired by their efforts, the city administration decided to tap into their potential and expand their businesses.According to Bogor Deputy Mayor Dedie A. Rachim, Bogor could one day be known and visited for its processed nutmeg with the help of Kampung Buntar.“We want to [expand] Kampung Buntar as a nutmeg village and hopefully, nutmeg can become Bogor’s signature product, especially in our efforts to bolster urban farming,” Dedie said at the initiative’s official launch in Kam… Google Forgot Password ? Facebooklast_img read more

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COVID-19: Major roads closed as regions brace for large-scale social restrictions

first_imgA number of cities and regencies have restricted access to main roads as local administrations brace for large-scale social restrictions previously mandated by President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to curb the rapid spread of COVID-19.The Bandung administration in West Java has cordoned off several major thoroughfares to limit the movement of citizens during the emergency protocol. The administration has also beefed up security in the region with the deployment of local police personnel to ensure public compliance.“This restriction is temporary,” said Bandung Traffic Police chief Comr. Bayu Catur Prabowo on Sunday as quoted by kompas.com. Topics : Trenggalek regency in East Java has imposed a partial quarantine, restricting access to 45 roads that connect it to neighboring regencies, including Ponorogo and Pacitan.Only three national roads remain accessible amid heightened virus concerns in the region. The local administration has also set up security checkpoints at the three remaining entrances to supervise traffic going in and out of the regency.“I have also instructed village heads […] to close roads that cut through their villages. Therefore, Trenggalek can only be accessed through the three remaining national roads,” Trenggalek Regent Muhammad Nur Arifin told the press on Monday while supervising the closure of one of the 45 roads in Gempolan village, Pakel district.He went on to say that the local administration would provide financial compensation to informal workers whose livelihoods would be disrupted by the emergency protocol.“As long as the country maintains its emergency response to COVID-19, access to Trenggalek will remain restricted,” Arifin said.Trenggalek is one of the few regencies in East Java that have maintained a zero-case status.East Java has reported 91 confirmed COVID-19 cases and eight fatalities at the time of writing.Meanwhile, in Central Java, provincial capital Semarang shut down five major thoroughfares on Sunday, including Jl. Pandanaran, Jl. Pemuda, Jl. Gajah Mada, Jl. Pahlawan and Jl. Achmad Yani.The restriction is in effect from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day. However, Semarang Mayor Hendrar Prihadi said the duration could be extended to 24 hours should anyone violate the rule.“We really hope that residents stay at home as much as possible. From what we’ve seen in the field, there are still people roaming the streets of Semarang,” Hendrar said.Semarang Transportation Agency head Endro Martanto said the administration, along with the Semarang Traffic Police, had restricted access to major roads to ensure that residents remain indoors to flatten the curve of the coronavirus infection.“To the public, please obey the rules for your own good. Please just stay home,” Endro said.Central Java has reported 81 confirmed COVID-19 cases and seven fatalities at the time of writing.A number of regions outside Java have taken a similar approach to prevent a nationwide contagion.As reported by tribunnews.com, Balikpapan in East Kalimantan restricted access to seven major roads into and out of the city on Tuesday, in accordance with a circular issued by the local administration.Balikpapan Deputy Mayor Rahmad Masud said he expected the public to fully comply with the policy to break the chain of viral infection in the city.The protocol, which is in effect from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. local time starting on Tuesday, affects Jl. MT Haryono, Jl. Ruhui Rahayu and Jl. Asnawi Arbain, among other roads.East Kalimantan has reported 17 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday morning.Similarly, Medan in North Sumatra also closed down 12 main roads on Saturday and more will likely follow as the health emergency continues, according to Medan Traffic Police chief Comr. HM Reza Chairul Akbar.The restriction is in effect from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., affecting Jl. SM Raja Simpang, Jl. Sakti Lubis and Jl. Al Falah, among other roads.North Sumatra has reported 13 confirmed COVID-19 cases and one death at the time of writing.Jokowi ordered his Cabinet on Monday to impose stricter rules on physical distancing coupled with “civil emergency policies” in an effort to contain the COVID-19 outbreak.”I ask that clearer regulations be prepared as guidelines for the provincial, regency and city administrations,” Jokowi said, adding that regional quarantine policies could only be enacted by the central government.Indonesia has recorded a total of 1,414 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 122 fatalities as of Tuesday morning. (rfa)center_img “Our personnel will urge the public to stay home.”The policy, which has been in effect Sunday, has affected a number of major roads throughout the region, including Jl. Asia Afrika, Jl. Braga, Jl. Kejaksaan and Jl. Diponegoro.The West Java provincial administration has recorded a total of 180 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 20 deaths as of Tuesday morning.Several other regions across Java have also implemented similar restrictions.last_img read more

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