Tomorrow is the last day for early voting in New York State

first_imgClick here to get more information from the Broome County Board of Elections. Registered voters can cast their ballot at the Broome County Library, the Oakdale Mall, the George F. Johnson Memorial Library, or the Taste of N.Y. building of the Cornell Cooperative Extension. After a high number of early voters this election year, the Broome County Board of Elections has expanded the hours of operation of the polls, but Sunday is the last day for early voting. The Broome County BOE is holding early voting from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. NEW YORK (WBNG) — Early voting for New York State resident wraps up tomorrow, Sunday, Nov. 1. last_img

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Haidara escapes serious injury

first_imgNewcastle defender Massadio Haidara has escaped serious injury from Wigan forward Callum McManaman’s horror tackle last weekend, the club have announced. The Magpies feared the worst when the 20-year-old Frenchman was carried off on a stretcher last weekend after a knee-high challenge – which Newcastle have branded “dangerous”. However, after a number of examinations this week the news is better than expected, and a club statement said: “We can confirm that results of the latest scan on Massadio Haidara show that the player has very fortunately escaped any significant bone or ligament damage following the dangerous tackle by Wigan Athletic’s Callum McManaman on Sunday.” The statement continued: “We are very pleased that the extent of his injury is less severe than first feared and is limited to bruising to the bone and soft tissue damage. “Depending on the speed of his recovery, he should be fit to play again in early April. “Massadio will continue to be assessed over the coming days. “He has been very lucky that he has not suffered more serious injury and this positive diagnosis in no way lessens the club’s views with regard to the severity of the tackle from which it resulted.” McManaman escaped punishment for the tackle as it was seen by a match official, meaning the Football Association could not retrospectively ban the player using video evidence. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

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MMIWG inquiry asks for twoyear extension and 50M more

first_imgKathleen Martens APTN NewsA national inquiry reviewing the causes of violence against Indigenous women and girls has finally made good on a promise to ask for more money and time.The remaining four commissioners signed a five-page letter to the federal minister in charge of the probe Tuesday – after first saying they’d have the request in by Christmas.So while the formal request to Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Carolyn Bennett is not a surprise, some of the reasons for seeking another two years and $50 million are eye-opening.Not the least of which is the revelation the inquiry expects to run a deficit for the next fiscal year.“We tried to hit the ground running and underestimated the infrastructure and resources required,” the commissioners say in the letter, a copy of which was obtained by APTN News.“There are several key expenditures that were not included in government’s original costing.”The expenditures are not explained in the letter but they don’t seem to deter Bennett. The minister said in a statement her government was committed to finding answers to the ongoing violence.And, she said action would soon be taken on recommendations the inquiry offered in its interim report in November.“The families of these women and girls needs answers to the systemic and institutional failures that lead to the murder of so many Indigenous women,” Bennett said.It was what Francyne Joe, president of the Native Women’s Association of Canada, wanted to hear.“We want to ensure that this national inquiry does the best work it can possibly do,” she said in a telephone interview.Joe said commissioners showed her and others a comprehensive work plan last month to help eliminate fears about ongoing internal dysfunction.“This is a plan that we wish had been prepared at the start of this whole national inquiry.”The inquiry has been plagued by staff turnover – including the resignation of a Metis commissioner – and key firings. It has lost two executive directors and senior lawyers.However, it sounds like it has been working behind the scenes to calm those waters and show it can get the results survivors, families and interest groups want.“We did have unprecedented solidarity on this issue in regards to all of the leadership in Manitoba, including the province of Manitoba, to move forward with the inquiry,” said Arlen Dumas, grand chief of the Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs.Dumas says that support should come with some strings.“The commission has not told parties how they would be carrying out Part 2, which are the expert hearings and the institutional hearings,” he said.“Canada should consider – if it extends the time – to ensure that it comes with a plan to properly inform families and survivors and parties with standing on what those next steps will be.”Pauktuutit, the Inuit women’s organization, also wants more information from the inquiry.“We’ve had our frustrations,” said president Rebecca Kudloo. “Poor communication, and our recommendations don’t seem to be taken too seriously sometimes.”Kudloo will pass her board’s opposition to an extension onto Bennett. She says her directors feel another 24 months is too long to wait for solutions.“We have the highest rates of family violence in Canada,” she said.Bennett says she will survey “families, Indigenous partners, provincial and territorial counterparts, and my Cabinet colleagues” before advising the prime minister on the request.Chief commissioner Marion Buller says the inquiry can conclude its work by the original deadline of December 2018, but it won’t be as detailed as she would like.“With an extension, the national inquiry will use the additional time to reach out to vulnerable populations, such as Indigenous women and girls who are in prisons and penitentiaries… are homeless…are involved in the sex trade…are being trafficked, or those who are living in violent circumstances,” she said in a conference call with reporters.They could easily double the number of witnesses and deepen the information they receive, she added.“The interest in participating is increasing every day.”So far, commissioners have heard from about 1,000 people at 11 public hearings and five statement gathering events.But they still want to hear from more, specifically members of the Metis Nation and the 2SLGBTQ communities, Buller said.“We don’t want to do a superficial job,” she added, “because that will reflect on our recommendations.”Buller and Commissioner Michele Audette listed a number of areas that need further research to help inform their recommendations. The result, they said, would be something all levels of government could adopt.Finally, they said they would change their leadership structure to one suggested by Manitoba Keewatinowi Okimakanak last week, which will see the four of them co-lead the inquiry going forward.“Leaders talked about a compromise with us,” said Audette. “We listened carefully (to) their concerns.”last_img read more

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Canada Post strike reveals the shifting nature of the postal service

first_imgIan Bickis, The Canadian Press TORONTO — The Canada Post of today that finds itself struggling through rotating strikes is a very different organization from the postal service that last saw labour disruptions.Back in 2011, as the company faced a labour dispute that led to its first loss in 17 years, then-CEO Deepak Chopra unveiled a plan to restructure the centuries-old institution to adapt to major structural changes brought on by the internet, including both a plunge in lettermail and a rise in packages.“Starting in 2007, letter volumes started to collapse like a stone,” said Ian Lee, an associate professor at Carleton University’s Sprott School of Business, who has studied the crown corporation.“That was their bread and butter, their core business, and their most profitable. Vastly, by far their most profitable product was lettermail. They charged lots of money, and it cost very little to deliver it.”By 2011 the Canada Post Group of Companies, which includes subsidiary Purolator Holdings Ltd. and others, was handling about 10 billion pieces of mail a year for a 1.8-billion drop from 2007. Last year, total volume came in at 8.4 billion as the service has sustained a steady drop in its core business of transaction mail made of up letters, bills, statements, invoices and other paperwork that’s now gone digital.In response, the company switched emphasis to its parcel service, which for years had stood at a fairly stable level. But the transition hasn’t been easy, said Lee, since unlike lettermail, parcel services have stiff competition from major international players like UPS and Fedex.“People say, ok well great, you lost one product line, you get another product line. It’s not that simple…this is a very competitive space, there is no monopoly.”Still, a rapid rise in overall parcels being sent out to consumers has helped Canada Post record significant gains in the space.Last year, parcel revenue came in at $2.1 billion, or about 33 per cent of Canada Post revenue, up from about $1.3 billion or 21 per cent of revenue in 2011.Parcel volume has climbed from about 143 million packages in 2011 to 242 million last year for an almost 70 per cent increase, as the service has also looked to increase convenience of the service with delivery lockers, self-service drop-offs, and same day delivery in Toronto and Montreal.In a 2016 annual report, Canada Post said it delivered nearly two thirds of online orders by Canadians.Lee said the service has been competitive, offering somewhat cheaper rates than private operators, but it’s been saddled with labour costs, a large pension obligation, and a culture slow to change.“Canada Post, which for over 200 years was a protected monopoly of the state, is dying before our eyes, but the culture hasn’t caught up,” he said.Pivoting has been hampered by difficult labour relations, pension obligations, as well as the structure of the service itself, said Malcolm Bird, associate professor of political science at the University of Winnipeg.“They’ve got difficult labour relations, political interference in their operations, they’ve got to deliver mail to everywhere regardless of the cost, so there may be a few little advantages, but I suspect they would be far outweighed by their public service role.”A government discussion paper noted that labour costs are about 41 per cent higher than comparable businesses in the private sector.Canada Post has to deliver to every address in Canada, but the number of addresses are increasing while each customer is using the service less. Parcel deliveries is a way to offset some of its costly obligations, said Bird.“Canada post, in raw political terms, it provides mail and package delivery services to rural and small town Canada, and the north, places where private companies provide limited service, if at all….this universal service obligation is at the absolute core of its political mandate.”The requirements of delivery are what pushed the service into the community mailbox program and away from door-to-door delivery, a move that was expected to save about $400 million a year before the Trudeau government shelved the plan. Despite steady declines of between around four and eight per cent per year, lettermail still provides the bulk of Canada Post’s revenues. Last year transactional mail pulled in $2.9 billion to make up 45 per cent of revenue, down from $3.2 billion or 54 per cent in 2011. Advertising, or direct marketing mail, makes up the other main segment for the service at $1.1 billion in revenue last year.The strike, however, threatens its core business further, since companies have been using it to encourage more people to switch to digital, said Bird.“Every single company that still provides paper letters, paper bills to people, is trying to use these rotating strikes to make even more people go on to electronic bills and get rid of paper.”The rotating strike has also shown the waning necessity of the postal service, said Lee.“They had enormous leverage in the 1960s, ’70s, ’80s, ’90s because the strike would cripple, literally cripple the economy because it brought the payment system to its knees.”Today it is an inconvenience for small businesses and customers ordering online, but hardly critical, he said.“It’s a bit of an inconvenience, but it’s not the end of the world like it once was.”last_img read more

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Eurozone ministers reach compromise deal on reform package

first_imgBRUSSELS — Eurozone finance ministers have agreed to strengthen the single currency bloc’s defences against any future financial crisis.Eurogroup President Mario Centeno said early Tuesday that “after several months of intense negotiations and a very tough and long meeting we delivered a comprehensive plan to strengthen the euro.”Centeno said that new measures will be introduced to keep on top of any further financial crisis and to enhance debt sustainability. One proposal will see the bailout fund, the European Stability Mechanism, provide financial assistance in times of need.The discussions among the 19 eurozone finance ministers pitted France against several northern European nations.The plan now moves to next week’s EU summit of government leaders.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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City staff help rescue ducklings caught down storm drain

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – Staff from the City of Fort St. John’s Bylaw Enforcement and Public Works department stepped out of their usual duties this week to help the North Peace SPCA rescue a brood of ducklings that had gotten stuck down a storm drain.North Peace SPCA branch manager Candace Buchamer said the SPCA got a report at around noon on Wednesday of a number of ducklings that had fallen down a storm drain near the Fort St. John Hospital. Buchamer said that with the SPCA being short-staffed that day, one of the city’s bylaw officers responded to the situation, and managed to rescue all but one of what was believe to be a group of five baby ducks.The fifth was reportedly too scared of the officer and managed to scurry out of reach, and the SPCA resolved to get the duckling rescued the next day.On Thursday, staff with the City’s Public Works Department went back out to the storm drain and were able to rescue not one, but two more ducklings from the drain. Sadly, though the area is known as prime duck territory, a search was unable to find the mother duck and her remaining brood. Buchamer said that though the ducklings fell directly onto the cement at the bottom of the storm drain, the ducklings are all in excellent health. She said that the group of infants have left the SPCA, having been sent to the Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre in Smithers to give them a chance at being released into the wild.last_img read more

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Kovind Naidu Modi greet nation on Buddha Purnima

first_imgNew Delhi: President Ram Nath Kovind, Vice President M. Venkaiah Naidu, and Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday greeted the nation on the occasion of Buddha Purnima. “Greetings and good wishes to fellow citizens and to the global Buddhist community on #BuddhaPurnima. Lord Buddha’s message of peace, non-violence and compassion hold even greater significance today. May his teachings guide us towards universal fraternity,” Kovind tweeted. Naidu in a series of tweet extended greetings and good wishes to the people of the country. “On this happy occasion, let us commit ourselves to the path of Dharma (righteousness), Karuna (compassion) and Maitri (universal friendship) shown by Lord Buddha,” he said. In another tweet, he said: “His eternal message of non-violence and compassion continues to inspire humanity across the globe to strive towards a more fulfilling life and a world where all people live together and shape it together into a peaceful, inclusive, sustainable globe.” “Lord Buddha was one of the most illustrious spiritual leaders to have walked this earth. He preached the most profound truths,” Naidu said. Modi also took to Twitter, and said: “Greetings to all countrymen on the occasion of Buddha Purnima. Messenger of truth, non-violence, mercy, compassion and peace, Lord Buddha’s message will continue to inspire the countrymen forever.”last_img read more

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Building Hockeys Advanced Stats Dream Team

Last week, the basketball website Ballislife.com tweeted a fun exercise, asking NBA fans to pick their dream starting five. The catch? It assigned dollar values to each legend and set up a monetary constraint which no lineup’s total cost could exceed. Do you want Michael Jordan as your starting shooting guard? OK, but he’ll cost you $5 of the $15 you have, so now you have just $10 of cap money to spend on four other players.It’s an entertaining spin on the classic “dream team” debate (although I’ll leave the basketball arguments to others). A few days later, though, Matt Henderson created his own version for hockey, giving us $18 to spend on our post-expansion NHL all-star team:Neil Greenberg, who runs The Washington Post’s Fancy Stats blog, posted his dream team analysis Thursday, and I thought it would be fun to take another look at the pros and cons of dream team building from an advanced stats point of view.GoalieEven at $4, Dominik Hasek is a steal. (As Greenberg noted, Hasek’s save percentage was much better than that of contemporaries like Martin Brodeur, even though Hasek is worth only $1 more than Brodeur by Henderson’s values.) In fact, during his career, Hasek was the outlier of all goaltending outliers. Because of the large influence of random variation in save percentages, most goalies can’t consistently distinguish themselves very much from an average netminder. But Hasek seemed to be the exception. In his career, he allowed 79 percent as many goals per shot as the league did, and was one of the only goalies ever to consistently sustain a very high level of play over a number of consecutive seasons. Hasek’s basically a no-brainer as the goalie for this team.As an aside, if Hasek had not been available, it might have made sense to buy the $1 goalie (in this case, Ed Belfour, a fine goalie who allowed 93 percent as many goals per shot as the league over his long career) and spend more on building a strong lineup of skaters. Because it’s difficult to predict how well a goaltender will play in a given season (much less a series or a game), it doesn’t usually make much sense to sink a huge percentage of a team’s payroll into one of them — a good piece of strategy in this exercise and in life.DefensemenThe four most valuable non-goalie seasons ever according to Tom Awad’s all-in-one stat Goals Versus Threshold (GVT; think Value Over Replacement Player for hockey) belong to Bobby Orr. Orr costs the maximum “salary” here ($5), but the difference between his production at his peak (an average of 45.6 goals above replacement per year in his best five seasons, with a career-high of 49.5 in 1970-71) and that of the next-best defenseman is truly massive. Among the next-best available D-men, neither Paul Coffey, Larry Robinson nor Denis Potvin ever produced a GVT better than 31.1 in any of their seasons.Speaking of Larry Robinson, it’s worth noting that he costs only $2 in salary despite putting up some of the best seasons by a defenseman in NHL history. In 1976-77, Robinson notched 85 points (ranking 12th among all players, not just defensemen) and set the non-Orr record for highest plus/minus in a season with a +120 mark. That performance was worth 30.4 goals above replacement in GVT’s estimation; Robinson also had five other seasons of at least 19.9 GVT, giving him a higher five-year peak than Nicklas Lidstrom despite Lidstrom costing more than twice as much in Henderson’s dollar values.CenterThe second-best non-goalie ever by peak GVT is Wayne Gretzky, who owns the two best non-Orr seasons ever by a skater (each were worth more than 43 GVT). Gretzky also costs the maximum ($5), which, when combined with the salaries of Hasek, Robinson and Orr, will leave only $2 to spread across two wingers. But like Orr and Hasek, Gretzky’s production was such a radical outlier that he’ll be worth the price. (For one thing, there’s plenty of evidence backing up the notion that super-elite playmakers, such as Gretzky and Mario Lemieux, can have a dramatic positive influence on teammates’ shooting percentages.)WingsOn the wings, we’re now essentially “stuck” with $1 pickups Jari Kurri and Johnny Bucyk as Gretzky’s linemates. There are a couple of reasons why this isn’t a bad thing, though. First (and this should be self-evident): Kurri and Bucyk are both Hall of Famers! It’s not like we’re picking from the dregs of the hockey universe here. In fact, Kurri and Bucyk had better GVT numbers in their best five seasons than Brett Hull and Luc Robitaille did in theirs, despite Hull costing four times as much as Kurri and Robitaille costing five times as much as Bucyk. Secondly, statheads have found evidence that — despite the importance placed on strong depth in hockey’s conventional wisdom — building a top-heavy team with a few stars and a bunch of lesser players is not such a bad thing.So, there you have it, the best team our $18 could buy: Hasek, Orr, Robinson, Gretzky, Kurri and Bucyk. According to the average of each player’s best five seasons, our team would produce 200.3 GVT in a hypothetical full season.In a perfect universe, our team would face that of Greenberg (Hasek, Mark Messier, Bobby Hull, Mike Bossy, Lidstrom and Zdeno Chara) and everyone else in the Twittersphere, and settle the matter on the ice. Obviously, that can never happen — and maybe it’s more fun this way anyhow. read more

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5 things to watch for Ohio State in the NCAA Tournament

2. Do the Buckeyes have a second scorer? Do they even need one?Since Thomas left for the NBA Draft at the end of last season, OSU has been looking to fill the hole he left behind. Junior forward LaQuinton Ross is the predominant scorer for the team, leading the Buckeyes with 15.4 points per game. But Matta’s squad has seen numerous players step up — only to falter — as the second guy. Everyone ­— from senior guards Aaron Craft and Lenzelle Smith Jr. to junior forward Sam Thompson and junior guard Shannon Scott — have at times looked like the player OSU can look to for points. Scott most recently put up 18 points in a loss against Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament semifinals, but perhaps the Buckeyes don’t need someone to step up on a consistent basis. Were it not for a missed 3-pointer by Craft, OSU would have had an opportunity to advance to the Big Ten title game against Michigan State, a team it beat a week earlier. If OSU has won 25 games this season with a rotation of players scoring behind Ross, what is to say they need a second strong shooter now? If OSU does make a deep run in the Big Dance, do not be shocked to see different names at the top of the scoring sheet following each game. 5. Buckeye post playIt’s no secret that OSU hasn’t looked for much from its postgame all season. Junior centers Amir Williams and Trey McDonald combine to average just 10.1 points per game, a far cry from what Sullinger used to do two years ago. But Williams, the starter, found himself on the bench during the important moments of the loss to the Wolverines Saturday in favor of McDonald. Matta is known for sticking with a hot lineup when his team needs a boost, so it will be interesting to see which player comes to play in the tournament. Winning in the postseason is very difficult without a solid low post game, so for OSU to have a chance, one of (or both) players will need to step up. OSU coach Thad Matta encourages his players during a game against Nebraska March 14 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. OSU won, 71-67.Credit: Shelby Lum / Photo editorThe Lantern sports editors share their insight on what fans should know about Thursday’s matchup against Dayton in the second round of the NCAA tournament. 1. Does Thad Matta extend his streak of Sweet Sixteens to five?Even with the departure of players like Evan Turner, Jon Diebler, William Buford, Jared Sullinger and Deshaun Thomas, coach Thad Matta has helped the Buckeyes sustain a consistent level of success in the NCAA Tournament. In each of the last four years, Matta has led OSU to at least the Sweet Sixteen — twice advancing even deeper into the Big Dance — the only coach in the country to do so. But this season might prove one of the tougher challenges for Matta. With Dayton in the second round providing a stiff challenge with talented 3-point shooters, OSU will likely have to fight to win their first game. But it is in the next round that looms perhaps the bigger challenge. No. 3-seed Syracuse, who started the season 25-0 before losing five of its final seven games, is heavily favored to advance past No. 14-seed Western Michigan in the second round, and sports a zone defense that is likely to be difficult for OSU to handle. The Buckeyes have struggled at times this season against a zone, and perhaps no one runs the zone better than Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim. Not the easiest road for a team that is 208th in the country in points per game. 3. Defense wins championshipsAll the talk of OSU’s below-average offense this season leads to one thing seeming to get ignored: the Buckeyes still have a phenomenal defense. On the season, OSU is 12th in the country in average points allowed per game with just 59.8, and is led by two players who were named to the Big Ten all-defensive team. Craft in particular — who was named Big Ten defensive player of the year for the second time in three years and is the conference’s all-time leader in steals — will be the rock for a defense that will hope to cover the holes created by offensive issues. It is often said that offense sells tickets and defense wins championships. If that is the case, OSU must like its chances to make a run. Although, if the Buckeyes allow more than 70 points to their opponent — second-round matchup Dayton is averaging 73.4 this year — Matta’s squad might be in danger. This season, OSU has only allowed 70 or more points six times, going 0-6 in those games. The Buckeyes are good on defense, but it might not be enough this year. 4. A proper senior sendoffAll season long, players like Thompson and Scott have had nothing but good things to say about the two Buckeye seniors in Craft and Smith Jr. Both were the fastest players in program history to 100 wins, doing so Nov. 29 with a 99-64 win against North Florida in their 119th game for the Scarlet and Gray. After falling to Michigan in the Big Ten Tournament, Craft and Smith Jr. — along with the rest of the roster — watched Selection Sunday in Columbus for the first time in their careers. The team is a No. 6 seed in the Big Dance, the first time its been lower than a No. 2 in the guards’ careers. But sending the two seniors off properly is sure to be on the rest of the team’s mind heading into the second round game against Dayton. An early exit surely will put a dent on their illustrious careers. read more

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Japan ready for Colombia with or without Rodriguez

first_imgAmid the growing uncertainty surrounding James Rodriguez’s availability for Colombia in their World Cup opener, Japan’s Yuto Nagatomo insists that they will not change their approach regardlessThe Bayern Munich loan star produced a man-of-the-match display in Colombia’s 4-1 thrashing of Japan in the 2014 World Cup at Brazil.However, his availability for the Tricolors for Tuesday’s Group H opener appears to be in doubt due to a left calf problem.Rodriguez had been absent from Bayern earlier this season with a similar calf problem and he trained separately from the national squad on Thursday and was absent altogether the next day.But for Nagatomo it changes nothing as Japan prepare for their sixth successive appearance at a World Cup.James Rodriguez, Real MadridZidane hails ‘quality’ James Rodriguez after Real Madrid’s win Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Zinedine Zidane reserved special praise for James Rodriguez after his starring role in Real Madrid’s 3-2 win over Levante.“Nothing changes. Whether (Rodriguez) plays or not, no matter who lines up for our opponents, the way we approach the game doesn’t change,” said Nagatomo, according to Japan Times.“The team and coach (Akira) Nishino have a strategy in place that doesn’t depend on whether a certain player is or isn’t in the opposing lineup.”While the Samurai Blue are prepared, either way, midfielder Genki Haraguchi admitted that they would prefer for Rodriguez to be unavailable for Colombia.“He’s their key player, so from our point of view, if he’s not playing, it makes things easier,” said the 27-year-old.The match will take place at the Mordovia Arena in Saransk on Tuesday.last_img read more

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