Public enterprises were doing better until Coalition Govt took over

first_imgDear Editor,The Honorable Finance Minister, in his Budget 2018 speech, forecasted a deficit of $12.8 billion in the overall performance of the public enterprises (PEs). He further pointed out that even though GNNL, GRDB, MARDS, GPOC, GUYOIL, GNSC and GNPL had a combined surplus of $2.5 billion, this was effectively eroded by GUYSUCO and GPL. Some of these entities, such as GuySuCo, GRDB, GPL and GPOC, are virtual monopolies, yet they are generating deficits.However, it was reported in the press — on August 9th, 2017, under the caption, ‘GuyOil earns $18 billion in first half of year’ — that the Finance Minister said GuyOil is expected to post a deficit of $328.4 million from an originally projected surplus of $813.1 million. On the other hand, in May this year, Mr Jordan had said that GuyOil is projected to earn a surplus of $3 billion.This is not illuminating at all. He should have given more details since earlier. The said minister had boasted that GuyOil stands ‘like a financial beacon in an ocean of economic woes’, while noting that the entity had always enjoyed an operating surplus. It must be noted that it is not very enlightening to have all these entities bundled together in his presentation, since it is difficult to gauge the loss-makers. From all indications, nearly all of these entities made losses.In another article, dated August 10th, 2017, under the caption, ‘Public Enterprises show mixed performance at end of mid-year’, it was reported that there was an 8.7 % decline in the total revenue of the PEs; and this would have included GPL, GuySuCo, GNNL, GRDB, and GPOC. It was stated that employment costs are more than 40 per cent of total revenue, and there was an increase of operating costs of 12 %.GPL and GuySuCo were forecasted to record deficits of $5 billion and $8.4 billion respectively. These two PEs alone would have given a total deficit of $13.4 billion, which would be above the $12.8 billion that he forecasted in his Budget speech.It is important to note that even though the decline of GuySuCo began under the previous Government, this downward slide was greatly accelerated from the time this Government took office. In December 2015, CEO Dr Clive Thomas boasted about the achievement of Skeldon Estate, and GuySuCo as a whole. Skeldon achieved its target of 30,594 tonnes, and exported 1,184,000 kilowatts of electricity to GPL; yet, in 2016, the same person said that it was a ‘ticking time bomb’. Furthermore, the CoI in 2015 never reported that the factory was ‘falling apart’. Now the entire GuySuCo is falling apart, with the lowest output predicted for 2018.It is quite evident that the other public enterprises are rapidly following in the footsteps of GuySuCo, and it manifests the fact that Governments should not run businesses. All of the entities were doing better until the Coalition Government took over, and this was pointed out by the Finance Minister. There is a strong belief that these losses will increase, since the increased wages and inefficient spending will drain the resources of the Government.These entities are a dumping ground for rewarding political patronage. Therefore, the Government will have to continue to depend on raising taxes and implementing new tax measures to meet its budgetary allocations, as in evidenced by the 2018 Budget.Public enterprises must be capable of generating surpluses, and from the evidence submitted by the Finance Minister, deficits are forecasted. Furthermore, it is expected that from these surpluses generated, the Government would have at its disposal fresh capital to invest and improve the production and productivity of these PEs. In addition, this will create employment. However, this is now an elusive dream. It is evident that political interference and political patronage will always take precedence over pragmatic business decisions.Drastic surgery should be done to these PEs before it’s too late. It simply defies logic that monopolies can fail so miserably but public enterprises have an ingrained political component which acts as a catalyst for failure.Yours sincerely,Haseef YusufRDC Councillor –Region 6last_img read more

Read More »

Chasing a dream

first_imgMOST READ Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college LATEST STORIES SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball PLAY LIST 05:02SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold02:43Philippines make clean sweep in Men’s and Women’s 3×3 Basketball02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Photo from Fiba.comPhilippine basketball’s young, rough jewel will get the polishing that it needs—but overseas.Kai Sotto, the sought-after high school star seen by many as the face of the country in future international events, has set his sights on pursuing his NBA dreams, dumping several offers to play in the country for the meantime.ADVERTISEMENT Sarah Geronimo’s ‘Tala’ enters Billboard’s world digital song sales chart “I will train very hard and sacrifice and focus in the next few years so that one day soon, you will be very proud of me.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next The 16-year-old prodigy also reportedly has offers from several club teams in Spain and another in Germany.“I want to devote the next two to three years to single-mindedly focus on my goal of joining the NBA by 2021 (or) 2022,” he said.In saying that, it is not clear, though, if Sotto will be available for national duty with Batang Gilas—or even the men’s team—while he is away.Sotto believes training abroad gives him the international exposure he needs as he tries to become the first full-blooded Filipino to make the NBA.“After a lot of effort by me and my dad to assess all the opportunities presented to me, I strongly feel (with his advice and the advice of other experienced mentors) that leaving immediately to start my training and getting the right exposure will go a long way to help me realize my dream,” the post read.ADVERTISEMENT Comelec assures no disruption in operations with retirement of execs Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption Sarah Geronimo’s ‘Tala’ enters Billboard’s world digital song sales chart P260,000 each in aid to displaced Marawi folk released by US View comments ‘Duterte legacy:’ Gov’t boasts achievements so far Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Cooper sees great talent for Azkals after Bangkok camp The 7-foot-2 Sotto announced his immediate plan to leave the country and train overseas.“Nakapag-decide na po ako at ang pamilya ko (My family and I have already decided). I’ll be leaving soon to start training full time,” Sotto wrote on his Instagram account on Monday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets‍‍‍ offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsSotto also bid farewell to Ateneo, which he led to two UAAP juniors Finals appearances, including a championship run in Season 80.Recognizing his talent and knowing that its high school star is the future of the UAAP, Ateneo has a standing offer for Sotto to play in the UAAP and be trained by a group that will be assigned by the Blue Eagles’ coaching staff. Tim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’last_img read more

Read More »

‘Overhyped and not good enough!’ England fans react to Jack Grealish news

first_imgThe wait is over! Jack Grealish has decided to play for England, not Republic of Ireland.The Aston Villa midfielder had played his international football as a youth for the Boys In Green as recently as August 2014 but, having never played a senior match, could still opt to play for England – his country of birth.And now, having become a star with the Villans under Tim Sherwood, Grealish has decided to make the switch.Fans of the Three Lions, though, don’t appear to be as excited as you might think. You can see how they reacted below… Aston Villa midfielder Jack Grealish 1last_img

Read More »

McPhee survives close call on ‘Idol’

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBasketball roundup: Sierra Canyon, Birmingham set to face off in tournament quarterfinalsBefore Daughtry’s elimination was announced, Cowell declared McPhee “should go” to a chorus of boos. After the loser’s identity was revealed, even host Ryan Seacrest called the decision “surprising.” McPhee may have agreed: During Wednesday evening’s live broadcast, she seemed to be the most nervous of the contestants as they awaited the results. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “American Idol” sweetheart Katherine McPhee survived to sing another day – but just barely. The Sherman Oaks resident, the only woman remaining in the fifth season of the reality phenomenon’s competition, landed in the bottom two Wednesday after her poorly received performances on Tuesday. In a week devoted to the hits of Elvis Presley, McPhee performed “Can’t Help Falling in Love with You,” which judge Simon Cowell dismissed as “Apple pie (with) a gallon of cream on top,” and a medley of “Hound Dog” and “All Shook Up,” which the Washington Post described as “spastic.” Nonetheless, one-time favorite Chris Daughtry – who performed “Suspicious Minds” and “Little Less Conversation” the previous evening – got the boot. last_img read more

Read More »

Ex-St. Paul standout shines at WSU

first_img10 a.m. Former St. Paul High School multisport athlete Dwight Tardy is making the of his opportunities playing football for Washington State University. The red-shirt freshman running back is No. 2 on the depth chart but leads the Washington State Cougars in rushing after gaining 62 yards on 11 carries in Saturday’s 28-22 loss to USC. Tardy has 274 yards and two touchdowns on 53 carries and is averaging 5.2 yards per trip playing behind sophomore DeMaundray Woolridge, who has 251 yards but no touchdowns on 46 carries (5.5 ypc). Tardy also has five receptions for 49 yards and two touchdowns, one of them a little swing pass for 10 yards that closed the Cougars’ deficit to six points late in the game against USC. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Read More »

Arsenal transfer news: Turkish giants set to swoop for star striker?

first_imgOlivier Giroud could be set for a move away from the Premier League this month, with Fenerbahce keen to bring him to Istanbul.The Frenchman has been used sparingly this season, often playing second fiddle to international colleague Alexandre Lacazette.Former Arsenal striker Robin van Persie is entering the final six months of his contract and the Turkish giants want Giroud to replace the Dutchman.The 31-year-old is keen to cement his place in France’s World Cup squad before they head to Russia this summer, and was recently linked with a move to Italian side AC Milan.And according to Turkish publication Fanatik, Fenerbahce could be willing to offer him the opportunity to get regular game time. Could the Frenchman be waving goodbye to the Emirates this month? 1last_img

Read More »

Following too Closely Results in Drug Arrest

first_imgTwo from Ohio were arrested Friday afternoon after a traffic stop.Arrested were Brooklyn Wagner, age 23, and Kortinee Glenn, age 26, both of Springfield, OH. Both were charged with Dealing and Possession of Meth.  Friday afternoon at 2:55, an Indiana State Police Trooper was working along Interstate 70.The Trooper observed a grey 2008 Mercury Mariner traveling westbound near the 48-mile marker in violation of following too closely.A traffic stop was initiated and during the stop, several indicators of possible criminal activity were detected.A K-9 unit was called and a free air sniff was conducted resulting in a positive alert for narcotics.A subsequent search of the vehicle yielded 15-pounds of suspected methamphetamine with an estimated street value of $30,000 dollars. The methamphetamine was individually vacuum sealed into 14 individual plastic bags.Both were Incarcerated in the Putnam County Jaillast_img read more

Read More »

Junior Leaders Selling Cheese Balls

first_imgAll cheese balls must be picked up at the Extension Office if ordered through the Extension Office.If ordered through a Junior Leader, the Junior Leader will deliver the cheese ball to you.The Purdue Extension-Washington County Office is located on the lower level of the Washington County Government Building at 806 Martinsburg Road, Suite 104, in Salem.The Jr. Leader cheese balls cost $8 each and are made of cream cheese, chipped beef, and spices.They can be rolled in parsley or pecans, or left plain.A portion of the sales price of this product will be used to promote Washington County    4-H Jr. Leader educational programs.No endorsement of the product by 4-H is implied or intended. The Washington County Purdue Extension Office and the 4-H Junior Leaders are takingorders for Thanksgiving cheese balls. Call 812-883-4601 or contact a 4-H Junior Leader to order your cheese ball.Cheese balls will be made on:Monday, November 25th – Pick up orders between 5:00-7:00 p.m. Call in order byMonday, November 18th.last_img read more

Read More »

Universal Orlando Preview — Week of January 13, 2018

first_imgUpcoming Events & HighlightsA Celebration of Harry Potter returns to Universal Studios Florida January 26-28.  The event features an Expo center, panels on the films, trivia challenges, house sorting, and film screenings at the Music Plaza Stage if you need to cool off your broom. The celebration is free for all guests of Universal Studios Florida.Universal’s Mardi Gras returns nightly from February 3 through April 7. This year the event runs nightly with the Mardi Gras parade with new Greek mythology-themed floats and a New Orleans carnival set up with food carts and a brass band. On select weekend nights the Music Plaza Stage will be host to major musical acts like The Beach Boys, Sean Paul, Macklemore, Fitz and the Tantrums, 311, Fifth Harmony, and more. Admission to Mardi Gras is included with standard admission to the parks.That is all for this week. See you next week and make sure to leave a question below for the Mail Bag! Share This!We are in the middle of winter in North America, but Universal is turning up the heat by announcing an amazing Mardi Gras concert line up. This week we also cover what activities guests can find at resort hotels, The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle coming to Islands of Adventure, and a new character breakfast at Sapphire Falls.Weekly Crowd LevelsDetailed crowd level information can be found here. Cold weather comes to Florida as temperatures reach the low 60s and high 50s. Make sure to pack for the weather. Volcano Bay could close due to cold weather; check the Universal Orlando and TouringPlans Twitter accounts for the latest operating information.Winter weather around the United States will affect travel plans. Keep an eye out for delayed and canceled flights. Notable NewsUniversal announced The Nighttime Lights at Hogwarts Castle, a new nighttime projection show in Islands of Adventure. The show is brought over from Universal Studios Hollywood where it debuted last summer. The show will have intermittent dates during A Celebration of Harry Potter, January 31, February 5, and February 7-12. More dates will be announced soon.Mardi Gras 2018 is around the corner and Universal has unveiled the musical acts playing select weekend nights. It’s a star-studded lineup spanning generations and musical styles:Feb. 3: Sean PaulFeb. 10: The Beach BoysFeb. 17: Kelsea BalleriniFeb. 18: Andy GrammerFeb. 24: MacklemoreMarch 3: 311March 4: Phillip PhillipsMarch 10: To Be AnnouncedMarch 11: Fitz and the TantrumsMarch 17: ForeignerMarch 18: Fifth HarmonyMarch 24: To Be AnnouncedMarch 25: BUSHMardi Gras concerts are included with standard admission to the parks. As such, guests line up early for the bigger acts. If you visit the park during a concert night and do not care to see the musical act, then avoid the area between Despicable Me: Minion Mayhem, Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon, and Monster’s Cafe.Sapphire Falls is testing a character breakfast this Saturday, January 13 (9 a.m. and 10:30 a.m.) at the outdoor Cayman Court. Universal Orlando characters will mingle with guests as they partake in an American-style breakfast buffet. Breakfast costs $35.26 per adult and $22.35 per child and tickets are required from the Loews ticketing site. A free digital download of a photo is offered per group. Park Hours and AdmissionCityWalk is open until 2 a.m. with free self parking starting after 6:00 p.m.Single-day park tickets are at Anytime pricing. One-day base tickets to Universal Studios Florida or Islands of Adventure will run you $124 per adult and $119 per child (plus tax). 2-Park 1-Day tickets are $179 per adult and $174 per child (plus tax).Volcano Bay tickets are at Anytime pricing at $67 per adult and $62 per child (plus tax). Weather Report Mail BagThe next few weeks of questions come from the TouringPlans Universal Orlando Lines App chat. To have your questions answered leave a message in the comments below or check out the Lines App.This week’s question comes from Marycap from the UO Lines App:What extra things can you enjoy if staying onsite? Like WDW has movies, etc.Disney’s resort activities for guests are one of the great reasons to stay at a Disney hotel. Universal and Loews host similar activities and more under the “Loews Love Kids” program.Universal hotels offer movie nights of popular Universal and non-Universal movies by the pool area (yes, expect lots of Minions). Check the hotel lobby for movie titles and times. Games and sports equipment are available to borrow from the front desk areas and all the hotels have an arcade with modern video games. I would be remiss to not mention Cabana Bay’s Galaxy Bowl bowling alley.The resort pools feature pool games directed by Team Members, Cabana Bay and Hard Rock Hotel feature DJs, and Cabana Bay has a lazy river. If you wish to visit Cabana Bay’s pool or another resort’s pool note that unlike at Walt Disney World, Universal encourages pool hopping.last_img read more

Read More »

3 Reasons Why Everyone Needs to Learn Markdown

first_imgYou’ve probably heard of Markdown. Maybe you’ve heard the name for years. Perhaps you just encountered it, since it’s enjoyed a renaissance lately. But do you know what it is? Are you using it? You should be. Here are three good reasons to use Markdown. There are no good reasons not to.Wait… What Is Markdown Again?If you don’t know what Markdown is, here’s the introduction from the Markdown project page:“Markdown is a text-to-HTML conversion tool for web writers. Markdown allows you to write using an easy-to-read, easy-to-write plain text format, then convert it to structurally valid XHTML (or HTML).Thus, ‘Markdown’ is two things: (1) a plain-text formatting syntax; and (2) a software tool, written in Perl, that converts the plain text formatting to HTML.”We’re here to discuss No. 1, using Markdown whenever you’re typing to format your text – whether or not you plan to post that text on the Web. Installing it allows you to directly post Markdown documents as blog posts or Web pages, but that’s up to you.One of its key strengths is that you can use HTML in Markdown. If there’s something you can’t do in Markdown, or if you can’t remember the Markdown syntax, you can switch back and forth freely between HTML and Markdown within one document. It understands both.You don’t have to have Markdown installed on your site in order to use it. It’s amazingly useful just as a writing language. Even if you don’t have to convert to HTML at all, it’s still an appealing way to format plain text without having to deal with Microsoft Word or another goofy rich-text editor.But if you write for the Web, or you work with people who do, you just have to try it. Here’s why.Easy On The Eyes“The overriding design goal for Markdown’s formatting syntax is to make it as readable as possible,” writes John Gruber of Daring Fireball, creator of Markdown. “The idea is that a Markdown-formatted document should be publishable as-is, as plain text, without looking like it’s been marked up with tags or formatting instructions.”HTML tags add lots of in-line noise. They make a document hard to read. For people unfamiliar with HTML, it could be impossible. Reading a Markdown document should make plain sense to anyone.Here’s an example of the difference:HTML read more

Read More »