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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 85,773

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

Prospect Medical, Neronha square off on Fatima, Roger Williams Medical Center

Prospect Medical Holdings, the Los Angeles-based parent company of CharterCARE Health Partners, is threatening to close Our Lady of Fatima Hospital in North Providence and Roger Williams Medical Center in Providence due to financial conditions sought by Attorney General Peter Neronha as part of an ownership change.

According to a statement from Prospect, Neronha wants Prospect to put between $120 million and $150 million in escrow “to purportedly ensure the financial viability of the hospitals,” according to spokesman Bill Fischer.

“The imposition of such an escrow is unreasonable, unacceptable, and unprecedented,” Fischer said in a statement. “The demand for such an escrow as a condition to continue to do business in RI would leave Prospect with very little choice but to initiate a wind down of its RI operations. Everyone involved in this transaction needs to understand that there are dire consequences for Rhode Island’s 3rd largest hospital system if this transaction is not approved.”

Neronha, however, pointed to concerns by a major accounting firm -- highlighted earlier this week by The Public's Radio -- showing that Prospect and its Rhode Island hospitals face financial viability risks. Prospect maintains it is well capitalized, with yearly revenue of $2.7 billion.

Neronha is expected to release Friday his decision on a proposal to allow two partial owners of Prospect Medical to take full ownership of the company, which operates 17 hospitals across the U.S.

Read more: https://thepublicsradio.org/article/prospect-medical-says-neronhas-conditions-could-close-fatima-roger-williams

Universal early education, child care would cost $5 billion in Massachusetts, MassBudget says in

Universal early education, child care would cost $5 billion in Massachusetts, MassBudget says in report

The cost of delivering universal, high-quality and affordable child care and early education in Massachusetts would exceed $5 billion a year in new public funding, according to a report, requiring the state to quadruple its commitment to an industry that has become a focal point for Beacon Hill.

The affordability of child care and access for families to high-quality programs has jumped up the priority list of legislative and Congressional leaders in Massachusetts after a year of the COVID-19 pandemic that exposed both its importance and vulnerabilities.

The report from the Massachusetts Budget and Policy Center estimated that the cost of expanding the early education and care system for children from infancy to age 4 to cover 288,000 children, or more than three times the 91,000 currently enrolled in public programs, would add $5.03 billion in cost.

The center’s estimate factors in increases in pay and benefits for early education teachers and staff and assumes a cap on the amount of money families would have to pay out of pocket, regardless of income or how many children they have in programming.

Read more: https://www.masslive.com/politics/2021/04/universal-early-education-child-care-would-cost-5-billion-in-massachusetts-massbudget-says-in-report.html

Fired Marriott Copley Workers Boycott the Hotel

What: Former Marriott Copley workers call for a boycott of their previous employer. Families at the Marriott Copley Place, the second biggest hotel in Boston, are struggling to pay their mortgages, feed their families, and potentially, find new employment after being fired in September of 2020. Former Marriott Copley workers are calling for guests and groups not to stay at the hotel until the hotel agrees to bring back fired workers when business returns and provide full severance.

When: Friday, April 30, 2021 from 10:00am-11:00am

Where: Marriott Copley Place, 110 Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02116

Who: Fired Marriott Copley hotel workers, UNITE HERE Local 26 President Carlos Aramayo, Boston City Councilor Ed Flynn

Why: Family members who used to work at the Marriott Copley Place, the second biggest hotel in Boston, are struggling to pay their mortgages, feed their families, and potentially, find new employment. Former Marriott Copley workers are calling for their return to work if and when business returns.

(no more at link)

Healey Doubles Down On Mandatory Vaccination For Public Employees

Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey reiterated her call for mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations for public employees Tuesday during her regular appearance on Boston Public Radio, calling it “just a matter of public safety.”

“Look, you’re there, you’re getting paid by the taxpayer — you have an obligation, whether it’s delivering public health or public safety,” Healey said. “You’re interacting with the public. That’s a part of your job, by definition.”

In some cases, Healey noted, individuals may be exempt from any vaccine requirements due to personal health and religious belief. But she suggested that individuals abstaining on those grounds may effectively forfeit the right to public-sector employment.

“You may have a right to refuse a vaccine,” Healey said. “It may not, though, mean you have a right to a certain job if that job requires you to meet certain standards and qualifications.”

Read more: https://www.wgbh.org/news/politics/2021/04/27/healey-doubles-down-on-mandatory-vaccination-for-public-employees

Experts: Biden efforts starting to 'pay off' at southern border

WASHINGTON (NEXSTAR) — Immigration experts told Congress on Tuesday the situation and conditions for unaccompanied migrant children at the southern border are improving.

Congresswoman Nanette Barragan (D-CA) said there’s a reason migrant children are coming to the United States.

“Northern triangle countries suffer from unspeakable violence, corruption and poverty,” she said.

Vice President Kamala Harris is leading the U.S. effort to improve the situation at the southern border. One change is children can now apply for asylum from their home countries.


But Aaron Reichlin Melnick from the American Immigration Council said the situation at the border is starting to improve.

“The number of children in border patrol custody has dropped 80% since late March,” said Melnick. “As of this morning, the number of children in border patrol custody is below 48 hours.”

Read more: https://www.wwlp.com/washington-dc/experts-biden-efforts-starting-to-pay-off-at-southern-border/

Boston mayoral hopefuls pitch workforce development ideas

BOSTON (SHNS) – Five Boston mayoral hopefuls pitched their workforce development visions and records Thursday, voicing broad agreement on the need to improve access to child care and offering ideas for how to help connect immigrants learning English and people returning from incarceration with jobs.

The Job Training Alliance, a coalition of 18 job training providers, hosted the five candidates — City Councilors Michelle Wu, Andrea Campbell and Annissa Essaibi George, state Rep. Jon Santiago and Boston Chief of Economic Development John Barros — for a virtual forum. Acting Mayor Kim Janey, who is also seeking a full term in City Hall, was unable to attend, said moderator Andre Green, the executive director of SkillWorks.

Boston’s City Council on Wednesday voted to move up the preliminary mayoral election to Tuesday, Sept. 14, a date that will fall just about three weeks after Janey’s Aug. 22 target for lifting all remaining COVID-19 industry restrictions and allowing the final group of still-closed businesses, including nightclubs, to reopen.

The city’s next mayor will help chart a course for its post-pandemic economic recovery, including for workers who lost their jobs during the COVID-19 crisis and others who left the workforce to care for children home from school and other family members.

Read more: https://www.wwlp.com/news/political-news/boston-mayoral-hopefuls-pitch-workforce-development-ideas/

Cruz Takes a Snooze, Biden's 100th Day and Gabby Douglas Teaches Jimmy & Guillermo How to Cartwheel

Vermont's troubled pension system for state workers and teachers threatens state economy

Vermont has a big pension problem.

The state is $5.6 billion short of the money needed to pay for pensions and health care promised to teachers and state workers, and the hole is only getting deeper, taking a larger percentage of the state budget.

If Vermont can't stem the bleeding in the budget and the state's credit rating drops as a result, it will hurt every Vermonter by making it harder for the state to borrow money for important projects and services it needs to keep the state moving forward.

Coming up with how to fix what seems like an intractable problem will be the mandate for a task force being formed by the state Legislature. House Speaker Jill Krowinski, D-Burlington, expects a report from the task force by September at the latest, so there's time to deal with the problem next year.

"I will say that understanding our pension system and this unfunded liability is extremely complicated and challenging," Krowinski said.

Read more: https://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/money/2021/04/28/vt-teachers-state-workers-face-possible-pension-cuts/4871532001/

Satire to be Banned in Vermont?

MONTPELIER – A number of State Representatives have introduced legislation which would make satire illegal in the Green Mountain State. Representative Woody Forrest of Woodbury says the measure is designed to upend the constant satirical suggestions of such entities like The Winooski.

Other sponsors, Toppy Hatter of Derby, Glenn Lake of Castleton, Hy Pond of Brandon and his cousin Burr Pond of Sudbury issued a joint statement supporting the measure stated “Vermont is being satirized on the World Wide Web by these outlandish purveyors of cynicism. It must end, and end now.”

House Member Ellie Moore of Elmore, and Sandy Gate of Sandgate, say a satirical ban would stimulate more introspective and passive psychological attitudes for Vermonters and visitors. Both Moore and Gates were contacted at their respective Zen businesses. Winnie Hall, Winhall’s Rep. for four decades, concurs. “Vermont is no place for satire. Having fun poked at you on a daily basis is emotionally draining and I would support a bill banning fun as well. We don’t have fun in Winhall as it is.”

Lawmakers are bantering over the penalty aspects of the measure, which some say directly targets The Winooski. Members Wally Cott and Roxy Bury both argue that this is not suppression of freedom of speech but rather a legislative cancel culture initiative that keeps Vermont pristine and satirically free.

Read more: http://thewinooski.com/index.php/2021/04/08/satire-to-be-banned-in-vermont/

Bill That Would Ban 'Forever Chemicals' Advances in Vermont House

A bid to ban consumer products that contain the kind of “forever chemicals” that polluted wells in the Bennington area passed a key committee Thursday in the Vermont legislature.

S. 20 would prevent food containers, rugs and ski wax made with PFAS chemicals from being distributed and sold in the state.

The bill received lengthy testimony and debate in the House Human Services Committee, much of it involving how firefighting foam containing the chemicals should also be phased out. The foam is used at the Vermont Air National Guard base in South Burlington, where it has polluted the groundwater, and by the petroleum industry.

The issue was complicated by concern that the state lacks the power to regulate the use of the foam by the Guard, which is governed by Department of Defense regulations but provides fire protection to the civilian Burlington International Airport.

Read more: https://www.sevendaysvt.com/OffMessage/archives/2021/04/29/bill-that-would-ban-forever-chemicals-advances-in-vermont-house
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