U.S. and Guatemala Conclude Joint Anti-Drug Operation

first_imgBy Dialogo October 26, 2012 Senior Guatemalan Military officers announced the end of the joint counter drug operation with the United States on October 24, after two months of operations in the south of the country, in which 2,000 kilos of cocaine were seized. “We have significant results including 598 air, land, and sea operations that were successful, which paid off since 2,000 kilos of cocaine were seized in different locations, particularly in international waters,” Guatemalan President Otto Pérez told the press. In addition, eight speedboats and nine firearms were confiscated, and 14 people were arrested due to different crimes related to drug trafficking. As the joint operations were finalized, 171 U.S. Marines left the country, and now the Guatemalan forces will continue with the operations, said Guatemalan Army spokesman Erick Escobedo. “The operation will not stop, but it will be reduced. The Military and counter drug agents gained experience and the necessary training to continue with the fight against drug trafficking groups,” said the Military spokesman. Since the beginning of the operation last August, the Armed Forces also found weapons and dismantled three laboratories that manufactured synthetic drugs. Guatemala, as well as other countries in Central America, has become a bridge and drug cartel warehouse for smuggled narcotics from South America to the United States.last_img read more

Modernized bylaws proposed by CUNA board: Membership vote to come

first_img 1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr The Credit Union National Association’s (CUNA’s) board of directors has voted to adopt and advance restated bylaws to a membership vote.CUNA Board Chair Susan Streifel reported the decision to CUNA members Monday and outlined for them the board’s plan to present the bylaw restatement to membership for review and then a vote.The main issues addressed in the restatement include: choice regarding membership in CUNA; the ability of the board to address CUNA’s dues formula; and board structure and governance.Streifel said a membership vote to approve the bylaws would “modernize our structure and enable us to be more nimble, effective and accountable in serving your needs.” continue reading »last_img read more

A simple core strategy for any credit union to be a relevant “core” in your community

first_imgYour credit union needs to be relevant to the core if it is going to continue to exist in (or more likely reclaim) its privileged position as an epicenter of your community.Correction, your credit union needs to be relevant from the core. Your core technology, and a business strategy built around that technology, should be the primary engine and energy driving your institution deeper into your community.  By that, I mean it should be empowering you to increase and strengthen your credit union’s position as a gravitational force on consumers, businesses, merchants, and other organizations in whatever community you serve.Despite the various, manifold, and predictable outcries I’ll inevitably receive from (irrelevant) core vendors as a result of writing this piece, I assure you of the following: this idea of core driven relevance is not a theory, it’s an easily verifiable fact.To understand the immediacy of this fact, all you have to is turn on your smart TV, your phone, your laptop, or whatever digital device you prefer and use your favorite non-financial services/non-banking technology.  Better yet, turn on your favorite non-financial services app on all of the above devices at the same time.Their formula for success and consumer satisfaction is not complex:Amass and control data about you as a customer in a centralized, person-centric, extensible/accessible database.Use that data profitably, and protect it as if it were gold (because it is).Extend that data out to the consumer via consistent, unified, adaptable digital experiences. The third prong of this common sense strategy is where things tend to get tricky for credit unions.  Put simply and succinctly, this is because most credit unions control very little when it comes to their ‘best of breed’ digital channels and modern member services.  We are now living in what DaLand CUSO is calling the Platform Predisposed or Platform Saturated era.  This era is largely the result of the ways in which the same tired, traditional, and aged core vendors (struggling to support steps 1 and 2 above) also (temporarily) solved your online, mobile, and digital channel demand problems (in the 90s and 00s) by buying and/or reselling bolt-on solutions (which then came to be known as ‘best of breed’ options) around their core.  Rather than looking ahead and supporting/anticipating a need to modernize your operations from the core, most core vendors created complex and cluttered universes of platforms around your core.  The result for your institution is expensive, inefficient, high-friction operations and fragmented/siloed (less profitable) data.  The result for your member is the functional equivalent of needing two different remote controls and an AOL dial up modem to access/view their favorite shows on-demand, on a limited few of the devices they desire (only after receiving a one-time pass code from a free Wi-Fi enabled toaster they received for opening a free checking account!).The bottom line for your bottom line is this: if your core isn’t empowering you to follow a common sense roadmap for relevance in the digital era, then it’s not a relevant core.  More accurately put, if you find yourself (especially as an executive of a financial institution) constantly confronting reasons why your business objectives and strategic initiatives can’t be accomplished, then you’re allowing your outdated, overcomplicated core to drive your financial institution into irrelevance.And yes, there are relevant core technologies and vendors serving the credit union marketplace which can position your financial institution to develop and execute a strategy around the three-step formula above.  There are at least three of them.  No, they’re not (necessarily) the three you ran into at your favorite annual or regional vendor or governmental affairs conference.  If you would like a map to get to one of them, we can help. And no, we won’t charge you a portion of your core contract or savings to get there.  That’s also an antiquated mode of business.I recently read an article by an industry peer which mentioned the usual suspects and players, and profiled the challenges they’re facing modernizing their cores and keeping their client bases relevant (the other author’s opinion, btw, not only mine).There were two things which struck me as core issues (pun intended) in the above mentioned article:The article spent an excessive amount of time predictably pontificating on how these vendors might solve their problems of relevance (and thereby the financial institutions’ crises of survival!) by simply adding some new features, new screens, and some desired new buttons and screens (or, what we affectionately refer to as obsession with button clicking and screen surfing).The author (astutely) remarks on the current trend of evaporation and consolidation happening in the community and small bank market.  Further, he connects this to the struggles and limitations these local financial institutions are facing as a result of their core platforms and core vendors. Regarding point one, above: your future as a credit union will not solidify or strengthen by talking to your core vendor about button clicking or teller screen surfing.  Sure, this stuff is important; but, it doesn’t amount to a strategy or IT road map to keep you relevant. Further, can we as an industry finally agree to dispense with the dogma, stigma, and excuses around the intricacies of commercial services and business loans and why that’s an alleged reason to remain on outdated solutions!? These alleged complexities of the commercial business universe don’t seem to be preventing outside players (like fin-techs) from foraying into commercial accounts, investments, financial services, and lending.  I would suggest that if you find a relevant core processor who has modern architecture and can amass and use data in an efficient and adaptable way (see non-financial/non-banking IT strategy steps 1-3 above), then that core can also support your aspirations and ambitions to dip your toes into commercial banking in your community. We know this, b/c we’ve seen it (and helped our clients actualize this reality!).Concerning point two: your credit union is no different.  Sticking by your antiquated legacy core is going to drive you into irrelevance. This will impact the lives of your members and the vibrancy and financial future/opportunities of the community around you.  That said, the fact community banks are evaporating (in part because of irrelevant core vendors) is good news for your credit union. Perhaps the best news our industry has heard in 100 years. Savvy, sustainable, technologically sound credit unions can cement their position as an epicenter in their community using modern digital tools and strategies driven from their core.  The evaporation of local banks is creating a vacuum into which your credit union should be attempting to expand its gravitational influence and mass.  As consolidation occurs in community banking, and as more consumers are forced into relationships with mega/big banks and national players, there’s a pool of potential members likely looking for a relevant, digitally savvy, competitively priced, local steward for their data and financial future!Don’t drop the ball!  Or, rather, don’t lose the opportunity to strategically pick up the local data, keep it stored locally, and put it to use (profitably) in and for your local community!!In an era of rapid technological innovation, modernization, and democratization (increasingly affordable, accessible, and usable to the general public) of powerful technology, there are only a few valid reasons to continue to tolerate technical limitations from your core processor: (1) an expensive termination clause in your existing contract; (2) broader benefits or strategic relationships with the parent vendor of the core processor; (3) a personal preference for awesome games of golf and great steak dinners the core showers upon you when they make their annual or quarterly visits!The first two are easily overcome, especially if you have a strategy and map to move past them and offset their impacts to your institution.  The third one … well, enjoy the steaks and tee times while they last! Hopefully your favorite steakhouse isn’t a local one in need of a capable local financial institution partner to keep them thriving.center_img 5SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Jon Ungerland Jon Ungerland believes the core philosophy underlying credit unions is the plausible and sustainable model for preserving healthy financial institutions and promoting financially dignified and strong communities in the 21st … Web: www.dalandsolutions.com Detailslast_img read more

Produce firm names winners of E coli research grants

first_img National Food Safety and Toxicology Center, Michigan State University, Elliot T. Ryser, PhD: Quantifying the risk of transfer and internalization of E coli O157:H7 during processing of leafy greens Western Institute for Food Safety and Security, University of California–Davis, Linda J. Harris, PhD: Factors that influence the ability of E coli O157:H7 to multiply on lettuce and leafy greens “Fresh Express is committed to bringing healthy, safe products to consumers, and we plan to share any research findings as widely as possible to help stimulate the development of advanced safeguards within the fresh-cut industry,” Viviani said. See also: The nine research teams, with their principal investigators and research topic, are as follows: Besides Osterholm, members of the scientific panel include Dr Jeff Farrar, California Department of Health Services; Dr. Bob Buchanan, US Food and Drug Administration; Robert Tauxe, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Dr Bob Gravani, Cornell University; and Dr Craig Hedberg, University of Minnesota. Tanios E. Viviani, president of Fresh Express, said the company was extremely pleased with the depth and scope of the projects the advisory panel selected. Food Technology and Safety Laboratory, Animal and Natural Resources Institute, USDA Agricultural Research Service, Manan Sharma, PhD: A novel approach to investigate internalization of E coli O157:H7 in lettuce and spinach Ohio State University Department of Microbiology, Ahmed Yousef, PhD: Sanitization of leafy vegetables by integrating gaseous ozone treatment into produce process Advisory panel chair Michael T. Osterholm, PhD, MPH, said in the news release that the panel was pleased with the quality of the proposals. “We were all extremely impressed by the innovative approaches and new directions being applied to E coli O157:H7 research to better understand and ultimately minimize the threat of this pathogen in fresh produce,” said Osterholm, who is director of the University of Minnesota Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, publisher of the CIDRAP Web site. Apr 11 Fresh Express news releasehttp://freshexpress.biz/assets/news/freshnews/pr070411.pdfcenter_img Apr 13, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – A scientific advisory panel assembled by Fresh Express, a California produce company, has selected nine research teams to receive awards up to $250,000 each to study how to keep Escherichia coli O157:H7 from contaminating fresh produce. University of Arizona Department of Immunobiology, Jorge A. Girón, PhD: Interaction of E coli O157:H7 with fresh leafy green produce In an Apr 11 news release, Fresh Express said the nine research teams that were awarded the 1-year research grants were chosen from 65 research proposals. Oklahoma State University Department of Entomology and Plant Pathology, Jacqueline Fletcher, PhD: Movement of E coli O157:H7 in spinach and dissemination to leafy greens by insects University of Georgia Department of Food Science and Technology, Mark A. Harrison, PhD: Fate of E coli O157:H7 on fresh and fresh-cut iceberg lettuce and spinach in the presence of normal background microflora University of Georgia Center for Food Safety, Michael P. Doyle, PhD: Subsurface contamination and internalization of E coli O157:H7 in preharvest lettuce Clemson University Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition, Xiuping Jiang, PhD: Determining the environmental factors contributing to the extended survival or regrowth of foodborne pathogens in composting systems Jan 19 CIDRAP News article “California produce firm to fund E coli research” In January 2007, Fresh Express, which produces bagged salads and other produce products, announced it would provide up to $2 million for E coli research and asked its volunteer scientific advisory panel to evaluate research proposals based on five priorities. The company’s initiative came in the wake of several nationwide E coli outbreaks that were linked to fresh produce, though the firm said its products have never been associated with any foodborne illness outbreaks.last_img read more

Letters to the Editor

first_imgDonors, volunteers made a big differenceThe year 2018 was another year marked by record-breaking disasters across the United States, with millions of people turning to the American Red Cross for help in their darkest hours. Time and again, we called on our community for support, and you answered generously with gifts of time, money, and blood.  Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionPost office must do more to stop thievesRe Dec. 7 article, “No holiday for the thief and the scammer”:  I’m so glad you wrote that article.  I’m somewhat disabled and can’t do much walking, so I shop QVC and HSN, which means my packages arrive in the mail.Last year, my post person (female) was wonderful. She always put my packages out of sight. This year, it’s a different story. My packages are left in plain sight of the street. Thankfully, I’ve been home every time and have gotten them.I’ve told the postmen, I have several, to put them where they won’t be seen. Some do, Some don’t. It’s like talking to a wall. I’ve spoken to the post office several times as well. They told me they will leave a note for the person delivering them. It didn’t help. One day when a package was left, to be seen again, I called the post office for three-and-a-half hours straight. No one answered. A recording said: “A supervisor was unavailable at this time.”UPS puts my packages where they won’t be seen and also knocks on my door. It only takes a few seconds to do this. The post office should have meetings once in a while and the subject should be brought up. I’m sure I’m not the only person this has happened to.The article mentioned what the people should do. May be the post office should read the article and then do their part. Hoping for improvements.Carol LeipSchenectadycenter_img Red Cross volunteers from the Capital Region played a critical role in responding to local and national disasters alike.From Hurricanes Florence and Michael, to the devastating California wildfires, to the tragic limousine accident in Schoharie, local volunteers were on the front lines offering comfort and hope in the face of heartbreak.Home fires were the emergency we responded to most frequently in 2018. More than 800 families across our region experienced home fires this year, at a rate of more than one fire a day. That’s why in addition to providing immediate assistance to families affected by fires, we visited nearly 2,500 homes and installed nearly 6,000 free smoke alarms to help end home fire tragedies in our community.As 2018 draws to a close, and I look back on another year of incredible work made possible by our generous donors and volunteers, I simply want to say thank you. The Red Cross delivers help and hope 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, and we couldn’t do it without you. Please visit redcross.org/eny to learn more about our work in 2018 and see how you can get more involved in 2019. Thank you, and happy holidays!Gary StriarAlbanyThe writer is the Regional CEO of the American Red Cross Eastern NY Region.More from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusCuomo calls for clarity on administering vaccineGov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationlast_img read more

Facebook closes political ads loophole ahead of US presidential election

first_imgTopics : Zuckerberg has touted transparency tools in response, arguing that voters should be able to examine statements from would-be political leaders unimpeded.In a USA Today op-ed on Tuesday, he pledged to display a Voting Information Center at the top of US users’ news feeds. He also said the company would aim to help 4 million people register to vote, double its goal for 2016. “Previously the thinking here was that these were organic posts, and so these posts did not necessarily need to contain information about ads,” said Sarah Schiff, a Facebook product manager overseeing the change.After receiving feedback, Schiff said, the company now considers it important to disclose if a post “was at one point an ad.”Facebook introduced a similar labeling approach for state news media earlier this month, but that label also sometimes drops off with sharing and does not appear when users post their own links to those outlets.The company is facing demands to do more to combat false viral information before the Nov. 3 presidential election, including by presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, who last week called on Zuckerberg to reverse his decision to exempt political ads from fact-checking.center_img Facebook Inc said on Tuesday it would affix labels to political ads shared by users on their own feeds, closing what critics have said for years was a glaring loophole in the company’s election transparency measures.The world’s biggest social network has attached a “paid for by” disclaimer to political ads since 2018, after facing a backlash for failing to stop Russia from using its platforms to influence the 2016 US presidential election.But the label disappeared once people shared the ads to their own feeds, which critics said undermined its utility and allowed misinformation to continue spreading unchecked.last_img read more

Colonial beauty decked out in cool style

first_imgThe living area at 8 Maine Rd, Clontarf. “It’s just beautiful out there. We have barbecues out on the back deck and also downstairs. “We’ve even had a wedding (at the home) so there is plenty of space for entertaining.”The home is close to local shops, schools, public transport and the waterfront. It also has easy access to the highways to Brisbane city and the airport. The property is being marketed by Stephan Siegfried and Johanne Fenton of One Agency Redcliffe for $729,000. The front deck at 8 Maine Rd, Clontarf.On the lower level of the home there is a master bedroom with walk-in wardrobe and access to the two-way bathroom, which has dual basins and separate bath and shower.More from newsLand grab sees 12 Sandstone Lakes homesites sell in a week21 Jun 2020Tropical haven walking distance from the surf9 Oct 2019Two of the three other bedrooms have built-in robes.There is also a tandem carport on this level along with a patio at the front and a porch at the back.Internal stairs lead up to the big open-plan living, dining and kitchen area with toilet and sunroom — perfect for use as an office. The kitchen at 8 Maine Rd, Clontarf.The big kitchen has plenty of bench and cupboard space, stainless-steel appliances and pantry.There is also front and back verandas for enjoying a cool afternoon drink or family barbecue.“The deck with its breezes and water glimpses is probably my favourite part of the home,” Ms McVay said.center_img The home at 8 Maine Rd, Clontarf.THIS beautifully remodelled Queenslander is just moments from the waterfront in Clontarf.Sue McVay and Ash Mason bought the property at 8 Maine Rd 10 years ago after falling in love with its character charm.“It’s just got that quintessential Queenslander style,” Ms McVay said.“It’s the style of home we love.“It was completely remodelled before we bought it but we did redo the gardens from scratch. “We’ve also freshly painted inside and out.”last_img read more

Buying now a capital idea

first_imgDAISY HILL: 484 Springwood Road. Renovated using timeless finishes and is conducive to relaxed family living. Price: Offers over $749,000; Agent: Nathan Strudwick, Elders Shailer ParkEAST Cleveland: Enjoys bayside living and genuine choice when it comes to value for families and their needs in a home. TW Balmoral: Restaurants and bars within walking distance and the suburb with multiple public transport options. Earmarked major multistagemixed-use development will impact the suburb also. DH Camp Hill: The Inner East continues to be unbeatable for families and the lifestyle so close to the city. BW Manly: Lovely bayside lifestyle choice for families. Escape the high density, and enjoy the larger blocks. JI Wynnum: The family’s first pick for eastern Brisbane living. Great schools, relaxing bayside living and lifestyle. This suburb wasmade for families in mind. PA WESTSherwood, Graceville and Chelmer: Some of the most beautiful and long established suburbs in Brisbane. There’s still good buying in this price bracket hereto but you have to move fast. TW Indooroopilly: Local golf course and shopping centre and close to major thoroughfares leading to the CBD and west. DH Kenmore: Country living in the city, homes perfect for the family. Top rated public and private schools. BW More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus16 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market16 hours agoKenmore: With its changing demographic towards younger families, neighborhood bars and eateries are on the rise. New builds, renovationsand redevelopments are now the focus in this transitioning suburb. JI Auchenflower: This tightly held community is great for young families wanting to be close to everything, including the city, great schoolsand just around the corner from Paddington. PA GOLD COAST Palm Beach: A fabulous blend of community on the beach. Only minutes from the airport and heart of Surfers’ Paradise. JI Elanora: Big homes on large lots at affordable prices and close to the beach. DH Robina: It has it all. Great retail precincts and good links to the nearby lifestyle suburbs. TW Ormeau: Family-friendly area with lost of new infrastructure going in or planned. BW Bundall: This suburb is undergoing a resurgence and is close to Surfers Paradise. Very family friendly. PA SUNSHINE COASTMoffat Beach: Moffat is becoming a favorite for family’s due to its easy lifestyle. It’s an all-embracing community, with many locals callingthis pocket home for generations. JI Coolum: Affordable beachside living surrounded by infrastructure and new developments. DH Buderim: A beautiful established high land suburb that enjoys coast living and often has great views. TW Kawana: Affordable and close to the beach and amenities with a lot of new developments and infrastructure. BW Buderim: Close-knit community with good schools and perfect for families. PA *** LUXURY – $1 million-plus NORTH Bridgeman Downs: It is becoming more popular with people who are after acreage not too far from the CBD, while the traditional dress circlesuburbs of Ascot and Hamilton will never go out of style or vogue. TW Ashgrove: Heritage homes, close to schools and public transport, with plenty of parks. DH Clayfield: Grand homes on large allotments. Prestige plus. BW Hamilton: Hamilton has a perfect blend of community vibes, heritage aesthetics and entertainment culture, and is home to top-tier villasand large estates. JI Clayfield/Kalinga: With so much growth potential. there is a reason why all the astute prestige buyers are coming to these two suburbs. PA SOUTH South Brisbane: It offers wonderful opportunity in a myriad of high quality property. Close to CBD and always sought after for its lifestyle.TW Sherwood: Borders the Brisbane river so many homes feature river frontage and stunning views. It is well connected by public transportto Brisbane’s CBD and Ipswich. DH Highgate Hill/Yeronga: Beautiful riverfront to green leafy homes with all the amenities close by. BW Coorparoo: Maintains a balance of old and new, with enduring character-rich homes and entertainment and lifestyle developments movinginto the area. It’s well renowned for its elevated prestige residences. JI Coorparoo: Quickly becoming the luxury hub of Brisbane’s south, Coorparoo represents a prestige location with the convenience of inner-cityliving. PA EAST Norman Park or Bulimba: These suburbs offer truly unique Queensland colonial style properties right through to mega mansions on the riverfront. TW Hawthorne: Average price of $1.2 million with the suburb featuring a retail and food hub. Plenty of green spaces and a cinema. DH Coorparoo: Mix of young, urban affluence with funky cafes and restaurants. BW Hawthorne: Within easy reach of the CBD and Oxford Street café district. Hawthorne’s style and quality can’t be argued. JI Manly: The Bayside boasts some of the best luxury homes in Brisbane, with stunning views close to the city. PA WESTPaddington: The western suburbs of Brisbane has always been popular for prestige buyers. There’s some outstanding properties on the marketright now in Paddington. TW St Lucia: Many homes have impressive river, mountain and city views. Multiple public transport options. DH Ashgrove/The Gap: Proximity to the city with large blocks, family feeling. BW St. Lucia: With it’s prestigious, renovated Queenslander and Federation homes, St. Lucia’s residential pockets are highly sought-after.Its consistent ranking in the top suburbs of Brisbane is of no surprise. JI The Wester Waterfront Corridor: This includes Indooroopilly, St Lucia, Chelmer, Sherwood, Yeronga, Corinda, Tennyson all the way down to Fig Tree Pocket.PA GOLD COASTCoolangatta: Retains the old Australia coastal lifestyle vibe with the world’s most insanely beautiful beaches. BW Broadbeach: Towering high-rise and contemporary apartment plus its bar and dining scene just keeps outdoing itself. Away from the bustle,family abodes and contemporary houses line cul-de-sacs along the canals in Broadbeach Waters. JI Palm Beach: Lots of new homes being built close to lifestyle amenities and the beach. DH Broadbeach Waters: Genuine GC living opportunities with both narina and est homes within beach lifestyle and amenities. TWMain Beach: A lot of luxury units but there is the odd luxury home amongst them and each has good rental possibility. PA COOLANGATTA: 61 Rutledge Street. Brand-new home with clear views from the Hinterland, beaches and out to sea. Price: $1,550,000-$1,650,000; Agent: Ben Gazal, Harcourts BMGSUNSHINE COASTBuderim: Perfect location for a tree change. Close to beaches and hinterland with terrific infrastructure. BW Sunrise Beach: The sea and tree change is certainly on, as the old makes way for the new. There is a renewed focus on prestige new buildsand renovations in this highly desired location. JI Noosa: Stunning luxury homes in arguably one of the best beach locations. DH Alexandra Headlands: Coastal luiving in a high land position with views and renovated or establish new homes. TW Noosa: It is hard to go past Noosa in terms of location and luxury. Great amenities and cafe culture. PA *** Holly Robinson with partner Michael Webb, are selling Holly’s mother’s home in East Brisbane. (AAP Image Steve Pohlner)QUEENSLAND’S enviable lifestyle, climate, opportunities and affordable housing is expected to drive strong growth in the southeast’s property market for years to come, with Brisbane and the wider region consistently outperforming their southern counterparts. The Courier Mail has spoken with the people who know the market the best – the agents – to get their predictions for the rest of the financial year, and the top spots to buy across the state’s capital.“Brisbane and southeast Queensland are in a very good position,” Ray White Surfers Paradise CEO Andrew Bell said. “They are the beneficiaries of a changed perception … where we are seen as a viable area in which to live with a good lifestyle and excellent employment opportunities.”Mr Bell said he was seeing a growing trend of people exiting the major markets like Sydney and Melbourne for a number of reasons but mainly lifestyle, affordable housing and to free up cash for retirement.Australian Bureau of Statistics data shows Queensland recorded its highest interstate migration in more than a decade last year, with jobs growth and more affordable house prices behind the trend.But local agents say Brisbane, and the southeast was still largely undervalued and prices will likely continue to go up, albeit steadily rather that astronomically as in Sydney.“If I was a buyer I’d be buying in Brisbane,” Sarah Hackett of Place Bulimba said. “There isn’t that vulnerability of prices going up or down like other markets … we just have good, steady growth.”Buyers agent Meighan Hetherington of Property Pursuit said her interstate client list had doubled in recent times. “I would say our interstate clients sat at around 15 per cent but now it is more like 30 per cent,” she said. “And we have quite a lot of expats.”Ray White East Brisbane agent Madi Roach said she expected the Brisbane market to ‘hold steady, with an increasing amountofinquiries from interstate expected. One of the houses currently on her books is 48 Didsbury St, East Brisbane, which has already garnered local and interstateinterest. Owner Holly Robinson said she had many fond memories of the house, which was given to her deceased mother by a family friendwhom she cared for. “It is a lovely character Queenslander in a fantastic location and in a quiet street,” she said.“We would love to keep it but we have bought a hobby farm and it is time to move on.”Ms Roche said she expected the Brisbane market to “hold steady”, and is predicting more price growth in her East Brisbanepatch. “There’s a huge amount of money being spent on infrastructure and with more restaurants, bars and coffee shops opening, thelifestyleappeal is only getting better as well,” she said. “We’re finding that young couples, families and expats are wantingto livewithin a proximity to the school they choose for their kids. “We’re fortunate that we have one the Brisbane’s best private boys’ schools in East Brisbane. “A recent example of this was theproperty we sold at 103 Mowbray Terrace, where all eight registered bidders were Churchie families.” Ms Roche said both East Brisbane and Wolloongabba had experienced “fantastic growth” in recent years, and she expected that to continue. But it is not just East Brisbane that is on the property watchlist.Five property experts have shared their top spots for first home buyers, families and luxury buyers. Those key players are Damian Hackett (Place Estate Agents CEO), Tony Warland (Ray White Qld CEO), Brendan Whipps (Harcourts Qld CEO), Jon Iceton (Belle Property Qld) and Paul Arthur (Queensland Sotheby’s International Realty CEO)*** FIRST HOME BUYERS – under $500,000 NORTHRedcliffe Peninsula/Woody Point: It’s on the water and it has a new rail line too which is perfect for access to the city. TW Stafford: It has its own retail precinct and cinema, bike paths and green space, along with walking paths along the Kedron Brook creek.DH Banyo: A great place to live that’s close to Nundah Village, CBD and public transport BW Boondall: Striking distance to CBD, good sized blocks and easy access to Motorway and two train stations. JI Chermside/Aspley: Great value with great growth potential for future capital gains. center_img 5 Humpybong Esplanade – Cute cottage in a prime location and within walking distance to shops, schools and public transport. Price: Offers over $489,000; Agent: Andrew Campbell, Ray White RedcliffeSOUTH Browns Plains: It has always provided fantastic infrastructure and amenities for the needs and requirements of first home buyers. TW Rocklea: Close to main thoroughfares and connected to the CBD by public transport. It’s also home to the long-standing Brisbane Markets.DH Springfield Lakes: Continued investment in the area makes this a terrific starting point for young buyers BW Springwood: Easy access to the Gold Coast or Brisbane. Entry level market with good opportunity to value add. Plenty of schooling optionssurround. JI Mount Gravatt: Quickly getting outpriced, first home buyers must act quickly to secure entry level homes in this quickly thriving suburb.PA EAST Alexandra Hills: Nice, steady suburb for homebuyers and investors with good returns. TW Murrarie: It is well-connected Eastern suburb on the fringe of some of Brisbane’s blue chip suburbs, Murrarie presents a great opportunityto enter the market. DH Wakerley: City is accessible, big blocks for young families, great opportunities for buyers. BW Murrarie: hard to find but good proximity to the city. Post war homes that can easily be updated. JI Wynnum West: Great place to enter the property market in an emerging area. PA WESTIpswich: The Ipswich corridor has long been the most affordable place to buy in all of SEQ and it has great schools and amenties.TW Oxley: Located on the Western train line, Oxley is now starting to benefit from the start of new development and change in the localarea. DH Oxley: Leafy, family orientated, quiet neighbourhoods, value for money. BW River Hills: Affordable leafy area in the Centenary Suburbs. Plenty of parks, and a nice area to bring up the family. JI Ferny Hills/Arana Hills: These are great growth and infrastructure suburbs. PA GOLD COASTCoomera/Hope Island: Within reach of the beaches and an easy commute to Brisbane, the Coomera/Hope Island districts offer some great opportunitiesfor the entry level buyer. JI Upper Coomera: New homes and developments keep this area evolving DH Oxenford: A solid market with the blessing of easy access to the beaches, Brisbane city, and both airports. TW Coomera: Good access to the M1 to get to Brisbane or the Gold Coast and beyond. Retail, schools, plenty of amenities. Affordable.BW Carrara: Plenty of new infrastructure post-Commonwealth Games. PA SUNSHINE COASTMaroochydore: With an urban community feel and backed by quality infrastructure, here you’ll find some of the Coast’s most affordable living.JI Sippy Downs: Plenty of affordable housing close to amenities. DH Kawana: Close to the coast with lots of new development including the new hospital. A lot more infrastructure underway or in the works.TW Sippy Downs: Heaps of new infrastructure and house and land packages. Easy commute to Brisbane. BW Peregian Springs: Close community surrounded by good infrastructure and amenities and the beach. PA *** FAMILIES – $500,000 to $1 million NORTH Bracken Ridge: I’m a long time fan. Buy your family home here and you’ll be set. It’s close to good arterials and shopping centres. TW Red Hill: Heritage listed suburb in walking distance to the CBD and Roma Street Parklands, with many properties boasting city views. Wavell Heights: It doesn’t get more family than Wavell Heights and the location continues to be a hotspot. BW Shorncliffe: Lovely area with public transport, surrounded by water, great local school and beautiful older homes. JI Grange. A Fantastic suburb suburb for new and established families, with excellent schools nearby, infrastructure and so close tothe city. PA SOUTH Rochedale: Offering small and large family value in well established communities. TW Moorooka: Connected to the Brisbane CBD and the Gold Coast via rail. Boasts own shopping area with more than 100 businesses. DH Daisy Hill: Great area to buy for a forever home, lovely homes. BW Tarragindi: Rolling hills. Plenty of parks, local cafes and close to the CBD. JI Holland Park West: So close to the Brisbane CBD, this is Brisbane’s best kept secret, where over 60 per cent of all home owners are families,and the average sales price is still around $800,000. PA last_img read more

Dad’s inspiration lives on in daughter’s award-winning house

first_imgThe riverfront property at Sinnamon Park.VEETA Bassi moved house 35 times by the age of 40 and she’s about to do it again, leaving the Sinnamon Park home she designed seven years ago. Custom-made pivoting glass doors channel breezes into the house.A lawyer by profession, Mrs Bassi hired Neo Building Design architects to realise her vision and builder, Scott Russell.The Windermere Estate house has a media room that is custom-made with a sound barrier wall similar to those used in convention centres. A rosewood staircase tapers from double width at ground level to single width on the first floor with Mexican-inspired battens. The rosewood staircase provides internal access while an external staircase also connects the two levels.Extinct wood from 100 year old Chinese fishing boats has been turned into tiles and used as a feature wall in one of the living rooms.Despite all these incredible features, communal areas are where Mrs Bassi feels most at home.“It’s the kitchen I feel connected to, a big communal area,’’ Mrs Bassi said. Rooms are enhanced by views to the Brisbane River.“I said I’m taking the best of every house you ever made and putting it into my home.”More from newsDigital inspection tool proves a property boon for REA website3 Apr 2020The Camira homestead where kids roamed free28 May 2019The result is 32 Burdekin Drive, Sinnamon Park, with 650sq m of living space designed to enjoy Brisbane River views from every angle, with pivoting glass doors. FIND MORE HOUSES FOR SALE IN SINNAMON PARK This is where Mrs Bassi and her family love to hang out.“We have three outdoor areas that come off the kitchen, the pool area, as well as two living spaces.“The back is the Brisbane City Council Reserve and the river.”Mrs Bassi’s father passed away last year, but his knowledge will be carried forward through Veeta and Harry Bassi’s daughters.“It’s in my blood and I’m going to teach the girls,’’ Mrs Bassi said. Relax by the pool at 32 Burdekin Drive, Sinnamon Park.Her father, Sukha Sandhu, was a builder in Canada with over 400 homes to his credit, and she was his greatest apprentice. “I designed the inside layout and my Dad came over and helped me with the structural things,’’ Mrs Bassi said. <<>>last_img read more

Asthma pill hailed in early test

first_img 64 Views   no discussions Share HealthInternationalLifestylePrint Asthma pill hailed in early test by: Associated Free Press – August 8, 2016 Share Sharecenter_img Sharing is caring! Tweet (File photo)PARIS, France (AFP) — The first new asthma pill in nearly 20 years has led to a sharp improvement in symptoms for chronic sufferers of the disease, according to an early test of the drug.A treatment called fevipiprant eased asthma symptoms, improved lung function, reduced inflammation and repaired the lining of airways, researchers reported on Friday.“This new drug could be a game-changer for future treatment of asthma,” said Chris Brightling, a professor at the University of Leicester, central England, who led the study.Asthma is a long-term disease in which the immune system in the airways goes into overdrive, and wheezing, coughing and restricted breathing are the result.People with chronic asthma can prevent or ease the symptoms by using an inhaler or steroids, but these can have hefty side effects.Fevipiprant seeks to prevent immune cells called eosinophils from moving into the bronchial walls, where they restrict and inflame the airways.In the trial reported in the British journal The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, researchers enrolled 61 asthmatics and divided them into two groups.One group was given 225mg of the drug twice a day for 12 weeks and the other participants were given a dummy lookalike pill, called a placebo.A key goal was to monitor levels of eosinophils in sputum — a long-used biomarker of asthma.People who do have not have asthma typically have an eosinophil count of less than one percent, while those with moderate-to-severe asthma have a reading of about five percent.Those who took the drug in the experiment and had moderate-to-severe asthma saw their average count of 5.4 percent fall to 1.1 percent over 12 weeks.No adverse effects were reported.Those who took the drug also reported extensive easing of symptoms, the team said.“We already know that using treatments to target eosinophilic airway inflammation can substantially reduce asthma attacks,” Brightling said in a press release issued by the university.“This new treatment, fevipiprant, could likewise help to stop preventable asthma attacks, reduce hospital admissions and improve day-to-day symptoms.”– Test hurdles –Bigger studies are needed before the prototype drug, made by Novartis, can be approved under the three-phase process to test a novel medicine for safety and effectiveness.“More research is needed and we’re a long way off seeing a pill for asthma being made available over the pharmacy counter,” Samantha Walker, director of research at the charity Asthma UK, said through Britain’s Science Media Centre.“But it’s an exciting development and one which, in the long term, could offer a real alternative to current treatments.”Novartis, on its website, says fevipiprant is now in Phase III testing, with a hoped-for date of 2019 for filing for a licence.Around 334 million people have asthma, a figure that inflicts a major burden on economies and health systems, according to a 2014 investigation, the Global Asthma Report.Fourteen percent of the world’s children experience asthma symptoms, it said — a trend that seems to have risen sharply in poor- and middle-income countries in the past couple of decades.Lifestyle and environmental influences, such as tobacco smoke, house dust mites, types of pollen and airborne particulate pollution, are known factors in asthma.But many aspects of the disease are unclear and vulnerability varies greatly according to the individual.last_img read more