News Previous articleHSE to launch Donegal ‘green gyms’Next articleWoman dies in Kilmacrennan crash News Highland Pinterest Twitter Three factors driving Donegal housing market – Robinson LUH system challenged by however, work to reduce risk to patients ongoing – Dr Hamilton RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR A US based Irish priest has launched a legal attempt to remain on bail while he fights extradition over an alleged rape in Donegal82 year-old Fr Francis Markey now living in the US state of Indiana, has been accused of allegedly raping a 15-year-old boy ib two occasion, once at Lough Derg and once in Galway in 1968.Fr Markey has been battling attempts by the DPP to bring him back to Ireland to face charges for the past 18 months.In written briefs filed in court this week, lawyers for the priest argue he should remain free on bail while he files more motions fighting the extradition.The assistant US attorney for northern Indiana, Kenneth Hays, pointed to case and statutory law which, he says, requires Fr Markey to be jailed once the court certifies extradition.Judge Christopher Nuechterlein has accepted that evidence of a crime may be “weak” but said it was up to the Irish courts to argue it and that the retired priest must face the charges.Fr Markey was arrested in November at his Indiana home in connection with the alleged rape. The priest, formerly based in Monaghan, is accused of raping the child twice in 1968.The 57-year-old man complained to gardai in June 2006 after reading the Ferns report. Twitter WhatsApp WhatsApp Google+ Google+ Facebook Business Matters Ep 45 – Boyd Robinson, Annette Houston & Michael Margey Priest facing Donegal rape charge launches another legal challenge in the US Guidelines for reopening of hospitality sector published By News Highland – February 20, 2010 Pinterest Calls for maternity restrictions to be lifted at LUH Facebook Almost 10,000 appointments cancelled in Saolta Hospital Group this week
February brought copious rain to most of Georgia, drastically reducing drought conditions in all but the southeast corner of the state. Cloudy conditions associated with the rain kept temperatures near or below normal for the month.While final rainfall reports from across the state are not all in yet, February 2013 is likely to be one of the wettest Februarys on record for Georgia. Due to the wet conditions across most of the state, drought conditions were significantly reduced everywhere except in far southeast Georgia, where drought conditions persisted due to the lower rainfall. At the beginning of February, 12 percent of Georgia was in exceptional drought and 44 percent of the state was in extreme drought. Both of those categories of drought were completely eliminated by the end of the month due to the heavy rains, although some lingering longer-term drought conditions were still noted. The wet weather was caused by a front that stalled over central Georgia, concentrating rainfall from numerous passing low-pressure centers along a line through southern Georgia. The only areas of the state that received less than their normal amount of rainfall were the areas right along the Florida line on the Atlantic coast and the far northern counties, which were very wet in January before the nearly stationary front sagged south. The highest monthly total precipitation reported by National Weather Service stations was 12.87 inches in Macon (8.51 inches above normal), and the lowest recorded amount was in Brunswick, with 3.77 inches (0.30 inches above normal). Athens received 6.36 inches (21.88 above normal), Atlanta received 7.50 inches (2.83 above normal), Savannah received 9.75 inches (6.96 above normal), Columbus received 12.47 inches (8.03 above normal), Alma received 9.54 inches (5.74 above normal) and Augusta received 9.40 inches (5.48 inches above normal). Monthly records were set in Columbus, where the monthly precipitation reached 12.47 inches, surpassing the city’s 1961 record of 9.41 inches. In Macon, the city’s 1929 record for February precipitation, 12.04 inches, was broken with 12.87 inches of rain. Savannah also set a new monthly record of 9.75 inches, surpassing the 1874 record of 9.71 inches. A number of daily rainfall records were also set in February. The highest single-day rainfall reported by a Community Collarborative Rain, Hail and Snow Network station was 5.62 inches near Valdosta in Lowndes County on Feb. 25. Two other observers near Valdosta reported over 5 inches and a number of other nearby observers reported over 4 inches on the same day. The highest monthly total rainfall reported by a network station was 19.01 inches, observed east of Putney in Dougherty County. Another observer west of Sylvester in Worth County reported recording 18.87 inches of rainfall. Sixty-nine other CoCoRaHS observers reported more than 10 inches in February. An observer in Hiawassee in Towns County reported 4.0 inches of snow on Feb. 3, and a number of other observers in the northern part of Georgia reported snow on either that day or Feb. 19. While farmers welcome the end of drought conditions, February’s excessive rain made it hard for some farmers to prepare their fields. Localized flooding was seen in many places. Several rural school systems in southern Georgia had to close for one or two days because flooded roads made travel treacherous. The wet soils have delayed field preparation and planting of greenhouse plants but have also recharged aquifers, boosting prospects for a good growing season if farmers are able to plant soon. With all of the rain and clouds, February saw temperatures that were slightly cooler than normal. In Atlanta, the monthly average temperature was 46.6 degrees F (0.6 degrees below normal), in Athens 45.2 degrees (2.0 degrees below normal), Columbus 51.2 degrees (0.1 degrees above normal), Macon 48.4 degrees (1.6 below normal), Savannah 53.1 degrees (0.1 above normal), Brunswick 56.7 degrees (2.2 above normal), Alma 53.9 degrees (0.3 below normal) and Augusta 47.6 degrees (1.5 below normal). Isolated severe weather was observed on Feb. 12, 24, and 25, but no significant damage was reported from these storms.
12SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,John San Filippo John is the co-founder of OmniChannel Communications, Inc., a company that specializes in B2B marketing to community financial institutions. He started out in the savings and loan industry, but wisely … Web: www.omnichannelcommunications.com Details (For all you youngsters, that’s the opening narration to The Six Million Dollar Man.)As I write this, I’m one day away from the total replacement of my left knee. It blew the first time during Hell Week of my senior year in high school in 1979, and has been scope-cleaned a couple of times since. And while my new knee probably won’t enable me to jump over buildings, I doubt it will cost anyone $6 million either. I know I don’t have a co-pay.Pondering my own date with the orthopedic surgeon, I got to wondering about what things credit unions still do that make about as much sense as holding onto my 55-year-old arthritic knee. Here are my top three. Buying Computer HardwareWould you buy and maintain your own car if it were cheaper and safer to have Jimmie Johnson drive you everywhere in the #48 car? I know I wouldn’t.It’s the same with computer hardware. Buying it is expensive. Updating it is expensive. Maintaining it is a hassle. Securing it is an increasingly complex specialty. The list of reasons to not be in the hardware business is extensive.When you move everything to the cloud, that entire list vanishes. Back in a previous life, I championed the idea of a paperless credit union. Today I’m telling you that every credit union should be a serverless credit union. It just doesn’t make sense any other way. Developing Software InternallyA few years ago, it was en vogue for the more technologically sophisticated credit unions to develop their own applications. I’m talking about things like online and mobile banking. I didn’t think it was a great idea then, and I’m not afraid to call it what it is now: dumb.To be clear, I’m not talking about CUSOs, i.e., separate entities that have the time and resources to stay focused on such things and develop them for the betterment of multiple credit unions. I’m talking about that lone wolf credit union that thinks it’s so special, no mere software company could ever give it what it needs.These credit unions are falling hopelessly behind. If I’m describing your credit union, please, for the sake of your members, as well as the sake of your own sanity, stop this madness today. Not Hiring Technology ConsultantsMany years ago, I read a book co-authored by Donald Trump in which he said, if you need to hire a consultant, it means you don’t understand your own business. I believed this for many years, thinking credit unions that used consultants were getting duped.Maybe that was never true, but I’m certain it’s not true today. For the same reasons you need to jettison all your computer hardware, and the same reasons you’re dumb to develop your own software, you need to consider a consultant for all your major technology projects. You’re not in the technology business, and you shouldn’t be in the technology business. Getting it right the first time is so, so critical today, why wouldn’t you want a team of skilled professionals on your side?It all comes down to a saying (one of many sayings, actually) that I try to live by: Pay the experts to do what they’re trained to do, and don’t be cheap about it.
Open enrollment season is here, and with a projected five percent increase in health care costs for 2018, employers are looking to control spending. As a result, employees selecting their benefit plans for 2018 will see higher costs, more cost sharing, and in most cases, a high-deductible health plan (HDHP) option.Large employers project health care benefit costs to exceed $14,000 per employee next year, according to an annual survey of large employers by the National Business Group on Health. Its “Large Employers’ 2018 Health Care Strategy and Plan Design Survey” found that 90 percent of survey respondents will offer at least one type of consumer directed health plan (CDHP) in 2018, up from 84 percent in 2017. And, among those employers offering a CDHP option, 80 percent will offer an HDHP paired with a health savings account (HSA).This is good news for credit unions offering HSAs to their members as there is a direct correlation between the increasing number of HSAs and the growth in CDHPs. Open enrollment season gives credit unions an opportunity to promote their HSA offerings and educate members who are in the process of selecting their health benefits about the advantages of an HSA. Many Members Not Aware of HSA’s Triple Tax BenefitsAn HSA is unlike any other tax-advantaged savings vehicle in that it offers a triple tax benefit:Contributions to an HSA are tax-deductible (pretax if made through payroll deduction). The interest earned in an HSA is tax-deferred.Distributions for qualified medical expenses are tax-free. An HSA can also be used to save for medical expenses in retirement.That said, members may not be aware of these HSA benefits, so educating them about an HSA and its financial opportunities is important. The 2016 Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI)/Greenwald & Associates’ “Consumer Engagement in Heath Care Survey” reported that 14 percent of privately insured adults were enrolled in a CDHP. And, while more than half of CDHP enrollees (56 percent) opened an HSA, the survey reported that 25 percent of CDHP enrollees were enrolled in an HSA-eligible plan but had not opened an HSA.Data Shows Continued HSA GrowthDespite what seems to be a general lack of knowledge about how HSAs work, HSAs experienced double-digit growth last year, as they have every year since they became available. Credit unions that offer HSAs recorded a more than 17 percent increase in HSA deposits last year and held $1.38 billion in HSA deposits as of year-end, up from $1.17 billion as of year-end 2015, according to call report data analyzed by the Economics and Statistics Department of the Credit Union National Association (CUNA). Yet credit unions held just a fraction of the almost $37 billion in HSA deposits in 2016, according to the “2016 Year-End Devenir HSA Market Survey,” which surveyed primarily the top 100 HSA providers. That is because less than 15 percent of credit unions offer HSAs to their members.HSA providers surveyed by Devenir in 2016 projected that HSA assets would grow by 20 percent this year and estimated that their own HSA business would grow by 24 percent. Based on the “2017 Mid-Year Devenir HSA Market Survey,” growth so far from 2016 to 2017 actually surpassed 20 percent. In its 2016 and 2017 surveys, Devenir projects that the HSA market will exceed $50 billion in HSA assets by the end of 2018, and $60 billion by the end of 2019.Credit Unions Can Drive Their Own HSA GrowthCredit unions can use the open enrollment season to build their HSA portfolios as members select HSA-compatible HDHPs as their health plans for the coming year. Following are tips to help credit unions build their HSA programs.Contact local insurance agents and brokers to make them aware of HSA program offerings. Their small business customers may be looking to offer an HSA-compatible HDHP and want to use a local financial organization as the HSA provider. Credit unions offering a competitive HSA program often find that insurance agents and brokers are happy to refer their clients to a local credit union offering HSAs, especially because not all banks and credit unions offer HSAs. Credit unions that enter into relationships with insurance agents to provide HSA services to their customers often find that this leads to new credit union memberships and the opportunity to offer these new members other credit union services.Promote HSA program offerings to small business and self-employed members. These members have already chosen the credit union for their business accounts and lending needs. Along with access to business credit, small businesses also struggle with the high cost of health insurance. Many are switching to an HSA-compatible HDHP to reduce health care costs. Providing HSA services to these small business and self-employed members can help them reduce costs and improve benefits for their employees. And as employees of these small businesses open HSAs, they help to build a credit union’s HSA program.Offer a free HSA educational seminar to help educate members and potential members about the benefits of an HSA. Although the HSA is becoming more popular, much confusion remains, and members may not fully understand the powerful tax advantages an HSA provides. Credit unions are already a trusted source of consumer financial information so helping educate members about the HSA ensures that members will understand the benefits and avoid the pitfalls. Credit unions that offer retirement planning seminars should include a discussion of how an HSA can be used to save for medical expenses in retirement. Credit unions have an opportunity to start capturing their share of the HSA market during the open enrollment period. Credit unions that offer HSAs are finding success, with 225 credit unions holding more than $1 million in HSA deposits and 61 holding over $5 million in HSA deposits, according to Devenir. Ascensus® partners with Devenir to offer the Devenir myHSAinvestments® solution and private-label HSA investment platform to credit unions. 29SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Dennis Zuehlke Dennis is Compliance Manager for Ascensus. Mr. Zuehlke provides clients with technical support on tax-advantaged accounts (including individual retirement accounts, health savings accounts, simplified employee pension plans, and Coverdell education … Web: www.ascensus.com Details
Asked to opine on the key takeaways from the election, Mr. Tuberville said he was concerned that Mr. Biden, a mainstream, centrist Democrat, had promoted a vision that he claimed “leads more to a socialist type of government.”“That’s concerning to me, that we’re to the point now where we’ve got almost half the country voting for something that this country wasn’t built on,” Mr. Tuberville said. “I tell people, my dad fought 76 years ago in Europe to free Europe of socialism.”World War II was a global battle against fascism.- Advertisement – Mr. Tuberville also said he planned to use his Senate office to raise money for two Republican senators in Georgia who are facing runoff elections that will determine control of the chamber. Senate ethics rules bar the use of official resources for campaign purposes.And in another exchange, he erroneously said that Mr. Gore, the Democratic presidential nominee in 2000, was president-elect for 30 days during an intense, protracted recount and legal battle. Neither Mr. Gore nor George W. Bush were considered the president-elect during that process. – Advertisement – Asked if he thought Republicans could still use their potential Senate majority to pass legislation in divided government, with Democrats controlling the White House and House of Representatives, Mr. Tuberville replied that he had been given a mandate to “help people,” adding, “I don’t care if you’re a Republican or Democrat.”“Our government wasn’t set up for one group to have all three branches of government — wasn’t set up that way,” Mr. Tuberville said. “You know, the House, the Senate, and the executive.” The three branches of the federal government, as laid out in the Constitution, are the legislative, including both the House and Senate; the executive, or presidency; and judicial, which includes the Supreme Court.- Advertisement – The interview amounted to the most in-depth remarks Mr. Tuberville had given since he was elected last week. He cut a low profile on the campaign trail, rarely making himself available to reporters other than those at conservative outlets, but had positioned himself as a staunch supporter of President Trump. In his first big interview as a senator-elect, Tommy Tuberville, Republican of Alabama, misidentified the three branches of the federal government, claimed erroneously that World War II was a battle against socialism and wrongly asserted that former Vice President Al Gore was president-elect for 30 days.Mr. Tuberville, a former Auburn University football coach who decisively defeated Senator Doug Jones, a Democrat, last week, gave the remarkable interview to The Alabama Daily News on Thursday after attending orientation for new senators in Washington.- Advertisement –