SAINT AUGUSTINE, Fla. — On Tuesday, Aug. 25, Virginia “Honey” Eckardt, 56, died after a nearly two-year struggle with cancer. Honey had served as the executive director of the Chesapeake Automotive Business Association (CABA) from 1992 through 2004, when she moved from Maryland to be near her children in Northeast Florida. Concurrently, she had been the CEO of the CAWA Federal Credit Union (now the Automotive Aftermarket Employee Federal Credit Union) from 1985 through 2004.AdvertisementClick Here to Read MoreAdvertisement Honey grew up in the automotive aftermarket working closely with her father, Dominick Amantea, who preceded her as the CEO of the Chesapeake Automotive Wholesalers Association, which became CABA in their merger with the Maryland Tire Dealers Association in 2001. She was a graduate of the University of Maryland with a B.S in Business Administration. “Hon loved the small business aftermarket and the people in it,” said Skip Potter, current executive director and CEO of both CABA and Automotive Aftermarket Employee Federal Credit Union. “She was their advocate and took her passion for them across the country as a member herself of both the Alliance of State Automotive Aftermarket Association Executives and the Tire Industry Association Executives. A memorial service for Honey will be held by the family on Thursday, Sept. 3, 5 p.m., at the Craig Funeral Home, 1475 Old Dixie Hwy, Saint Augustine, FL, 32084.,Lubrication Specialties Inc. (LSI), manufacturer of Hot Shot’s Secret brand of performance additives and oils, recently announced the expansion of senior leadership. Steve deMoulpied joins LSI as the company’s chief operating officer (COO). AdvertisementClick Here to Read MoreAdvertisement DeMoulpied comes to LSI from the Private Client Services practice of Ernst & Young where he managed strategy & operations improvement engagements for privately held client businesses. Some of his prior roles include VP of strategic development, director of strategic initiatives, and Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt at OptumHealth, UnitedHealth Group’s health services business, as well as Lean Six Sigma Black Belt at General Electric, where he applied operations improvement principles to customer service, supply chain and product development. A successful entrepreneur, deMoulpied is also the founder of PrestoFresh, a Cleveland-based e-commerce food/grocery business. DeMoulpied has a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Management from the United States Air Force Academy and a Master of Business Administration degree from the University of Dayton in Marketing and International Business. He served six years with the USAF overseeing the development of technology used on fighter aircraft and the E-3 Surveillance aircraft, finishing his career honorably as Captain. LSI President Brett Tennar says, “Steve’s success in developing operational strategies that improves the bottom line, builds teamwork, reduces waste and ensures quality product development and distribution checks many of the boxes of what we were looking for in a COO. This, coupled with his career in the Air Force working with highly technical systems and his in-depth understanding of Lean Six Sigma and Business Process Management sealed our offer. As our tagline states, our products are Powered by Science. This data driven approach is one reason why our company has grown exponentially as we employ the most advanced technology to product development. I am confident that Steve is the right person to drive operational strategy for our diverse and growing brands.” Advertisement With more than 20 years of experience across multiple industries and functional areas, deMoulpied has particular expertise in organizations with complex technical products. Combined, his prior positions have required a spectrum of skills in corporate strategy, operations improvement, product quality, and revenue cycle management. He has an impressive history of utilizing data driven problem solving (Lean Six Sigma) and project management (PMP and CSM) to achieve strategic goals surrounding customer satisfaction, operational efficiency and improved profit.
Scene from Santa Fe National Forest. Courtesy/Kyle MaxwellSFNF News:SANTA FE — The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) will waive fees at many day-use recreation sites and amenities Monday, Jan. 20, 2020, to honor the legacy of civil rights leader Martin Luther King, Jr.All SFNF offices will be closed Jan. 20 for the federal holiday, resuming regular business hours Tuesday, Jan. 21.Fees will be waived at SFNF sites that normally charge a day-use fee and campgrounds that are not on the recreation.gov system. Since many recreation sites on the SFNF are closed for the winter, visitors are encouraged to contact the appropriate Ranger District Office to determine which sites are open and will waive fees.Fees at all national forests and grasslands will be waived at many day-use sites, such as picnic grounds and developed trailheads, in cooperation with other federal agencies under the Federal Lands Recreation Enhancement Act. The remaining fee waiver dates for 2020 are:President’s Day: Feb. 17, 2020National Get Outdoors Day: June 13, 2020National Public Lands Day: Sept. 26, 2020Veterans Day: Nov. 11, 2020
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Op-ed by the Hon. Saboto Caesar, Minister of Agriculture in St. Vincent and the Grenadines Over the past eight (8) years, I had the opportunity as a policy maker to traverse the hemispheric front line of food production. COVID-19 has brought to the fore the paramount importance of food sovereignty. Never again in our lifetime should anyone dream or even imagine to slight the critical role of food producers. Share this:PrintTwitterFacebookLinkedInLike this:Like Loading… Six Eastern Caribbean countries deemed safe for travel – CDC The following are achievable targets for the Caribbean’s Agriculture Sector that we must seek to achieve when the COVID-19 dust “clears”:1. There must be a virtual market place for food products made in CARICOM so that consumers throughout the region can access;2. Intra-regional trade in agriculture products should be prioritised and increased;3. Strengthening of local food production value chain will reduce national food import bills;4. The decline in tourism employment will shift labour and capital towards food production investment, until we see a revival of the tourism sector;5. Emergence of a modern and competitive food production platform; and6. Establishment of a working cadre of innovative entrepreneurs across the region working to promote regional import substitution. You may be interested in… (Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States Press Room) A united approach to regional agriculture is the only way the agriculture sector in the Caribbean can be hopeful – even amidst the avalanche of seemingly insurmountable challenges.It is often said that, “God will not give us more than we can bear”. St. Vincent and the Grenadines is currently experiencing one of its worst droughts in over fifty (50) years and the regional forecast for the 2020 Caribbean Hurricane season is not reassuring. It is critical that we restate that there is a consensus among all regional policy makers that food security is vital. This is a clear expression of a political will to creatively advance the cause of food production and productivity. CMO says Saint Lucia at critical stage of COVID-19 outbreak Oct 15, 2020 Minister of Agriculture of St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Saboto Caesar. (Photo via IICA) Honourable Saboto S. Caesar is a former Island Scholar and lawyer by profession, with a specialisation in Banking and Finance Law. He is the youngest elected member of Parliament in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and currently serves as the Minister of Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries, Rural Transformation, Industry and Labour. Regional barriers to trade must be removed now! The unfounded belief that our ‘lamb’ is bad, but lamb from distant lands must be better must become a myth of the past. The Way Forward: About the Honourable Saboto S. Caesar: Both the OECS and CARICOM Secretariats are busy today, seeking modern modalities to address the food production sector. For the first time, we have seen such speed to create virtual purchasing platforms for food, utilising website platforms, and social media to engage stakeholders within and across Member States. Firstly, there will be a shift in labour towards the food production sector;Secondly, capital invested in agriculture will have greater projected returns on investment than other sectors; andThirdly, technology will provide greater utility in the expansion of agriculture since a new generation of producers will enter the food production value chain. This will encourage the State to increase its support to agriculture investment. Oct 15, 2020 I anticipate that the aggregated State budget for regional food production will increase significantly in the decade 2020–2030 as a result of three (3) important factors: The aim is that wholesalers, retailers, and consumers can use their cell phones and laptops to make orders of food which will be delivered to their door steps. Currently, logistics and distribution platforms are being designed. More deaths from COVID-19 recorded in CARICOM countries,… These challenges are the day to day concerns of farmers and fishers as they continue to follow national advisories on COVID-19 health protocols. However, giving up is not an option! Our resilience as a region can be a global successful showcase if we combine our efforts to effectively grapple with the vagaries resulting from our challenges. Oct 16, 2020 Effective communication among producers, traders and technicians will be critical for the success of our modern agriculture. Man-made self-centered barriers must be removed. We must collectively own this dispensation. In a truly functioning single market, food products must move freely. I have confidence that we can and will achieve success! St. Lucia records more cases of COVID Oct 16, 2020 Enabling agricultural investment in Caribbean for effective response, post-COVID-19 recoveryTop stakeholders in agriculture and economics in the Caribbean are among officials who will participate in a webinar on Thursday 7 May, to discuss agricultural investment during and post-COVID-19. The online discussion is one of several coordinated by the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations Regional Office…May 5, 2020In “Agriculture”IICA Will Assist Caribbean To Boost Trade in Goods, Agricultural Information Exchange, Strengthen Food SecuritySan Jose, 20 April 2020 (IICA Press Release) Thirteen Caribbean Ministers of Agriculture participated in a videoconference with the Director General of the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), in which they discussed strategies to bolster agricultural activity and to safeguard the food supply amidst the ongoing health crisis,…April 21, 2020In “Agriculture”Media Advisory – Webinar on Enabling agricultural investment in Caribbean for effective response, post-COVID-19 recoveryThe Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) of the United Nations’ Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean has taken the task to coordinate and carry out a series of discussions, through online conferences, focused on the effects of COVID-19 on the agri-food system. The fifth webinar of the FAO-COVID-19 and…May 6, 2020In “Agriculture”Share this on WhatsApp This advent is a creation of the “social and physical distancing” advisories advanced by COVID-19 health protocol officials. Young people are becoming excited and businessmen who are engaged in the distribution of goods are finding interesting possibilities from the virtual marketing of Agriculture produce. It is the way to go!CARICOM Member States are all urged to create supportive platforms for food production stakeholders through special budget allocations. This is certainly necessary, since farmers and fisher folk will be witnessing significant increases in the cost of production because of climate change and inevitable slowdowns resulting from the pandemic.
I’ve been proposed to three times, accepted twice and married once. So, I know a thing or two about commitment and lack thereof.In the time of COVID-19, commitment takes on whole new meaning. Shacking up is in and hook ups are out.The question is front and center in Italy where a new directive has been issued giving a green light for people to visit certain people. The word they use is “congiuniti” and the edict translates that those allowed to visit are spouses, cohabitating partners, civil union partners, and people who are linked by a stable emotional bond. Hello, explosion on Google as “congiuniti” (not an often-used term) becomes the most frequently searched word by Italians. Could this be your lover, girlfriend, boyfriend, clearly not a friend, but how about a friend with benefits? Would Romeo even be allowed to visit Juliet?Come on, this is the original romantic culture of flirting and trysts and handsome men with pretty girls in flowing dresses riding a Vespa. But stable emotional bonds as a single person? Not sure that is on any Italian’s Bumble profile. One Italian woman felt that the new edict was an intrusion on her privacy with the government asking her to define her relationship. The Rome Bureau Chief for the New York Times weighed in on the confusion saying “Freedom rests between Like and Like like.”Think about translating “a stable emotional bond” in America. We are a disposable culture where our biggest moral victory has been eliminating plastic straws. An article in the New York Times cites a statistic that before this virus hit some 34 percent of American singles had engaged in sex before an “official first date.” Like meaning even before the Vespa ride?While we are all living casual Friday every day, casual sex is (mostly) gone from the landscape. As we are thinking about leaving normal in the dust and creating a new normal that is better for the planet, our health, our mental health, addressing financial inequality, food sources and who we want as our leaders, why not think about a new and healthier way to conduct our love lives? Notches on the bed post (or on Fit Bit) is so 2019. If singles were addicted to a different “snack” every day, how about a more nourishing diet of stable emotional bonds?Some relationship experts say that this imposed distancing is forcing people in the dating world to slow down and get to know each other, often over the phone or a video chat before even meeting in person. Are people willing to reveal their true selves and what is really important to them?It’s not about him picking you up in a fancy car and impressing with an expensive dinner. She can be in a ponytail and in sweats and reveal (quelle horreur) what she looks like without makeup. What are the questions you ask one another? What are the answers you give? What if your give a s**t is broken for tolerating unkind or uncaring people? What if it’s not based on looks and bank accounts? Is someone intellectually curious and able to share meaningful life experiences? I know there is fear of rejection, but with so many other things to fear in the world we live in, why not bury that in the backyard with the skinny jeans and the scale?Is variety the spice of life? Or does the depth of a relationship give life its flavor? For me in my myriad experiences with commitment, the most important thing is someone who has your back, especially now.I am opening up Kiss & Tell to a special edition where I will take readers’ relationship questions, sort of a non-judgmental Dear Abby. I will keep the questioners’ identities anonymous but give my answers, and there may even be a special prize. You can send to email@example.com@gmail.com Share
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So when is the government going to publish its Justice Bill, containing the legal aid reforms, Jackson proposals on civil litigation funding and sentencing reforms? This is the question to which everyone wants an answer. Speculation on the date has been rife, with dates suggested from the end of May, 8 June, 15 June and 20 June. Sources close to justice secretary Kenneth Clarke indicated to the Gazette last week that the bill has to be laid by 16 June at the latest in order for it to get through parliament in the current session. However, the widespread reports today that Clarke may have to shelve key planks of his proposed sentencing reforms, has prompted speculation that the bill will be delayed by some weeks. As reported in the Gazette last week, it appears that proposals to save £130 million by reducing the prison population are to be dropped. Clarke had proposed that defendants would get a 50% reduction in their prison sentence if they entered a guilty plea at the earliest opportunity. But following a backlash from some sections of the media over Clarke’s comments on rape, and opposition to the proposals from some Tory MPs, it seems that the prime minister David Cameron has intervened to ask the Ministry of Justice to go back to the drawing board on the plan. The MoJ is giving nothing away. It will not comment on what will or will not be in the bill, or on speculation in the media. When asked for an indication of when the bill will be published, the MoJ replies over the last couple of weeks have been ‘in due course’ and ‘shortly’. Today, the most that a spokesman would say was that ‘publication is expected in the next few weeks’. The Home Office said the bill and its timing was a matter for the MoJ, even though home secretary Teresa May had given briefings on sentencing reform this morning, and was reported to have said that the bill has been delayed. Number 10 would neither confirm nor deny the prime minister’s involvement in the process, or that the sentencing proposals are to be amended. All its spokeswoman would say was that the government had consulted on ‘proposals’ set out in the green paper, and a policy announcement will be made in due course. What seems to be clear is that things are definitely up in the air, and the various government departments themselves do not seem to know what the situation is. Reading between the lines from the scraps of information being dragged out of government spokespeople, and piecing together the morsels gathered from our sources, it appears that the MoJ is keen to get the bill out there as soon as possible. That’s because if the MoJ cannot find the £130m savings it had planned to from its sentencing reforms (because it was overruled by Downing Street), it wants the Treasury to stump up the cash instead. The MoJ does not want the bill to be pushed back until it comes up with an alternative savings plan. Instead it wants to use the imminent publication of the bill as leverage to encourage the Treasury to cough up. Or so some experts believe. The Treasury would not comment on whether it had been approached for assistance from the MoJ, but a spokeswoman said it will ‘not be reopening the settlement in the spending review’. What does this mean for legal aid lawyers? Well, if Clarke can persuade the Treasury to bail him out, he may not need to look to the legal aid budget, which is already facing a £350m cut, to find further savings. So, perhaps legal aid lawyers should hope that the bill is published as soon as possible. A delay might imply that Clarke has been unable to do a deal with the purse holders, and has to find further savings. And no doubt the legal aid pot would seem one of the most likely for him to raid.
Justice secretary Kenneth Clarke opined this week that he did not know ‘why’ legal aid was so expensive. Considering ‘if’ it is expensive would be a more pertinent point. By most measures in a western economy the healthy balance between private and public is about 60:40 – a ratio that is sustainable and arguably desirable. Yet the £19bn legal economy is radically skewed towards the private. In round terms, legal aid, the largest line item in that spend, is just 10% of that figure. The £29m spent on legal fees through the government’s central panel, and the £106m spent by local authorities, pushes the figure to the heady heights of just over 11% of the legal economy. That reaches maybe 14-15% when you include the 2,000 lawyers working across the Government Legal Service. The message from this is clear – the public element of the legal economy is, in military parlance, already ‘running hot’. In common with areas such as higher education, individuals are already doing more with less, and, in many instances, clearly pricing what they do below the market rate for their individual or corporate services. This thought does not seem to have crossed Mr Clarke’s mind.
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