Payment performance to be mandatory

first_imgNew proposals obliging large and listed companies to publish detailed information about their payment practices and performance have been unveiled by Business Minister Matthew Hancock [pictured].The changes will provide robust information making it easier for small businesses to “compare the role models with the less reputable.” Specifically, the average payment time will be revealed; the proportion of invoices paid beyond terms; and the proportion of invoices paid within 30 days, over 30 days, over 60 days and over 120 days.The new proposals show “how the government intends to use the prompt payment power” in the Small Business, Enterprise and Employment Bill which is currently going through Parliament. Reporting on a quarterly basis will be mandatory.last_img read more

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Shearings adds free wi-fi

first_imgAs part of the operators ongoing vehicle enhancement programme, Shearings Holidays has now launched free on-board wi-fi on all of its branded coaches.Jane Atkins, Managing Director at Shearings Holidays says: “We are always looking for ways to improve and update our holiday experience and this is a great addition to our branded fleet.“We know our customers are tech savvy and like to stay in touch while away and this is now easier than ever before.”last_img

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Bus patronage in early 2021 avoids return to mid-2020 depths

first_imgBus patronage in Britain predictably plummeted in the early days of 2021 after strengthened movement restrictions were introduced. But it has not plumbed the depths seen in the earlier stages of the coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic, according to figures released by the Department for Transport (DfT).Outside London, on the year’s first working day – Monday 4 January – buses carried 29% of the passenger volume recorded in the third week of January 2020, which DfT uses as a reference. That figure dropped to 24% by Wednesday 6 January. It rallied slightly to 26% on Monday 11 January, the most recent day for which data is available.Weekend ridership is at similar levels. Saturday 2 and Sunday 3 January saw 25% and 31% respectively, declining to 23% and 25% respectively seven days later. In London, usage figures have hovered in the mid- to low-30% area, bottoming out thus far for 2021 on Friday 8 January with 31%.Outside the capital, the last full working week of December saw patronage peak at 58% on Tuesday 15 December 2020. That return has been bettered on only 10 days since 18 March 2020.Bus patronage in London for the early part of January 2020 was ahead of that in the remainder of Britain, but it is still much lower than late 2020January’s decline in bus patronage has undone most of the good work done by operators during the second half of 2020.But the figures for early 2021 thus far are stronger than those seen during the first period of movement restrictions in the early months of that year.Outside London during that period, bus use was at 20% or below for 81 of 82 consecutive days from 24 March to 13 June 2020. No data was recorded on 8 May 2020. Patronage bottomed out at 10% on four of those days.Despite the low figures in the early days of 2021, bus patronage both within and outside London as a percentage of previous figures is ahead of other public transport modes. Neither national rail nor London Underground services have exceeded usage of 20% since 29 December 2020, although differing methodology is used in both those instances. In the former case, some returns are provisional.last_img read more

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2020 Census looking to hire Hoosiers for temporary jobs

first_imgIndianaLocalSouth Bend Market Google+ By Tommie Lee – July 19, 2019 0 373 Twitter WhatsApp FILE – This March 23, 2018, file photo shows an envelope containing a 2018 census letter mailed to a U.S. resident as part of the nation’s only test run of the 2020 Census. A trial will begin in federal court on Monday, Jan. 7, 2019, in San Francisco, over the Trump administration’s decision to add a citizenship question to the 2020 U.S. Census. (AP Photo/Michelle R. Smith, File) Workers are needed for the 2020 Census.The US Census Bureau is recruiting thousands of people to take temporary jobs across the nation, and there are numerous opportunities for Hoosiers.The 2020 Census Jobs website allows applicants to apply for a number of jobs in the state, including recruiting assistants, office operations supervisors, clerks, field supervisors, and census takers. People with language skills, including Spanish, are needed.Applicants under 18 can apply but they will need to be 18 years of age by the time they start work.Learn more at http://2020census.gov/jobs Twitter Pinterest Google+ 2020 Census looking to hire Hoosiers for temporary jobs Facebook Pinterest Facebook Previous articlePolice: Granger man jailed after being found with 3+ pounds of potNext articleRagu Pasta Sauce recall due to possible plastic contamination Tommie Lee WhatsApplast_img read more

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Kendallville police officer shoots suspect during struggle

first_img Google+ Twitter Facebook Facebook Previous articleVehicle crashes into Zolman Tire in MishawakaNext articleBiden endorsement from Oliver Davis Jr. Associated PressNews from the Associated Press and its network of reporters and publications. Pinterest Kendallville police officer shoots suspect during struggle By Associated Press – November 23, 2019 0 344 Google+ (“Police car lights” by Scott Davidson, Attribution 2.0 Generic) KENDALLVILLE, Ind. (AP) — Authorities say a northeastern Indiana police officer struggling with a domestic violence suspect shot and wounded the man after he pulled a handgun from his waistband.Indiana State Police say the shooting occurred about 8 a.m. Friday at a home in Kendallville.Police say the Kendallville officer arriving first at the home contacted the man and a struggle ensued outside. When the man produced the handgun, the officer fired his service weapon.Police say the suspect was taken to a Fort Wayne hospital for treatment. The extent of his injuries wasn’t clear. The officer wasn’t hurt.State police are investigating the shooting. Pinterest Twitter WhatsApp WhatsApp IndianaNewslast_img read more

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Ex-boyfriend accused of killing woman targeted in November

first_img Previous articleScrap over old Indiana gay marriage ban derails popular billNext articleTests show Porter County patient does not have coronavirus Associated PressNews from the Associated Press and its network of reporters and publications. Twitter Google+ WhatsApp Google+ IndianaNews Pinterest Facebook Twitter By Associated Press – February 2, 2020 0 239 Ex-boyfriend accused of killing woman targeted in November WhatsApp Facebook Pinterest (Photo supplied) HAMMOND, Ind. (AP) — A northwest Indiana man who was set free on bond on attempted murder charges is accused of fatally shooting his girlfriend, who he allegedly previously attempted to kill.Hammond police say Charles Goforth is charged with first-degree murder in the death of Sylvia Williams.A relative on Wednesday found the 55-year-old Williams dead in her mobile home. Goforth was charged with attempted murder for shooting Williams on Nov. 1.He was freed on a $7,945 bond and a judge allowed him to return home to Independence, Missouri, where he was arrested Thursday.last_img read more

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Too much of a good thing

first_imgAs our political leaders lamented the plight of the Union’s jobless, one of Ireland’s top business leaders was due in town. Eager to show that power and influence had not gone to his head, the intrepid captain of industry told ‘his people’ back in Ireland not to bother ordering a chauffeur-driven Mercedes to meet him – he would take a taxi.But he had failed to take into account the effect the summit would have on the availability of taxis. To put it another way, there was an enormous queue.At this point the Irish industrial mogul decided enough was enough. He turned around, got back on the aircraft which had just brought him over from Dublin and was home in time for a pint of Guinness by the banks of the Liffey.last_img read more

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Conflict prevention paper to stress Commission’s role

first_imgFrance and Germany are insisting the EU executive should not be given the right to determine whether a group of member states can press ahead with ‘enhanced cooperation’ in the foreign policy arena, although it will be able to do so in other areas of policy-making in its role as guardian of the Union treaty.French diplomats have suggested that enhanced cooperation could be used, for example, to allow some states to form a special high-level task force to deal with the conflict in the Great Lakes region in Africa even if others did not wish to take part. But Paris argues that the Commission should not be given in a say in whether this happens.France has traditionally been the strongest advocate of giving the EU a more united position on external relations issues, but through greater coordination of individual member states’ stances rather than by boosting the Commission’s role.However, Patten argues that trying to improve the effectiveness of the Union’s foreign policy while marginalising the Commission is self-defeating because the executive can provide considerable aid and controls essential policy tools for dealing with crisis situations.He emphasised the importance of his institution’s role in a speech in June, saying: “While the Commission has nothing to say – nor do we seek a role – in defence, it is impossible to separate purely military matters from related issues in which we are competent, and have a real contribution to make. Military and the non-military actions cannot be placed neatly into separate boxes. Nor should they be, because they need to be closely coordinated in the service of a single strategy.”The debate comes as EU leaders prepare to boost Solana’s role by giving him control of the Union’s new permanent political and security committee (PSC), which will run crisis management operations from next year. The paper on ‘effective conflict prevention’ will emphasise the executive’s importance in dealing with humanita-rian emergencies such as the situations in Bosnia and Kosovo, although it will not be involved in the military side of crisis management operations.It will also argue against any attempt to marginalise the Commission, while acknowledging that the Union’s usual decision-making procedures will have to be telescoped if it is to take rapid action to deal with crisis situations.The move comes as most EU governments are fighting French-led attempts to limit the Commission’s role in deciding whether some Union countries can go ahead with new foreign policy initiatives without all 15 member states being involved.last_img read more

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Bosses show little backing for Byrne

first_img“If we are the ‘main business representative body’ [as Byrne described them] then we are surprised that the Commissioner keeps reporting that there is ‘broad support’ for the plan,” said Chauvin.“That is because, from the very outset, UNICE has expressed high scepticism and has asked, from the very beginning, for clarification. “Maybe it’s time to get that clarification. The reform Byrne is proposing is far-reaching and could have an impact not only on consumers but the whole internal market. But we have not had a satisfactory response and we are not in a position to support it.”Chauvin admitted that industry was encouraged by Byrne’s initial promise to replace some of a patchwork of EU consumer protection laws covering many sectors with a single framework directive that would force companies to trade fairly with their customers.But he said this plan appears to have been scaled back and that the new directive might be an extra layer of red tape that will make life more complicated for companies – particularly small firms. “Now they [Byrne and his officials] are saying the broad framework could co-exist…it is changing, and moving like an amoeba – but the contours are not shaped,” added Chauvin. The linchpin of Byrne’s plan – to be in place when he leaves the Commission in 2004 – is a framework directive that would force businesses from plumbers to e-commerce bookstores to abide by common levels of ‘fairness’ in their dealings with customers. In an interview with European Voice last week, Byrne said a green paper outlining his proposals had received “a very good response” from business groups. However Jérôme Chauvin, head of company affairs at Brussels-based EU employers’ federation UNICE, suggested the Irish Commissioner’s statement was overly positive. The business group said it also has concerns over the way the Byrne blueprint will fit in with other pressing areas of EU policy.These include Commission President Romano Prodi’s proposals on European governance, the Convention on the future of Europe and a separate initiative on sales promotions, launched by Internal Market Commissioner Frits Bolkestein.At the same time, UNICE said it was unclear how Byrne’s plans would affect industry’s efforts to police itself.last_img read more

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War is hell, but AIDS remains our deadliest foe

first_imgDarfur is headline news – but actually, the worst humanitarian crisis in the world today is in southern Africa. I mean it. While the devastating effects of the three-year drought now appear to be receding, southern Africa is still crippled by a blight of cataclysmic proportions – the HIV/AIDS pandemic.So far, around a million people have died. This is the tip of the iceberg: with as many as one in three adults in some countries infected with the HIV virus, the deaths can only increase. There are already 11 million AIDS orphans in southern Africa; by 2010, this number is expected to swell to 20m. Imagine every child under five in France, Germany, Italy, Poland, Spain and the United Kingdom losing their parents and you begin to get the picture.One of the worst aspects of HIV/AIDS is that it hits people at the most productive stage of their lives. Southern Africa is now losing teachers, doctors and civil servants at a faster rate than it can train them. The effect this has on social services is obviously devastating. In Africa as a whole, seven million farmers have so far died of AIDS – a much more lethal blow to agricultural production than any drought.Horrific as these statistics are, they do not seem to impress donors as much as the short-term, high-profile crises caused by conflict or natural disasters. There is, for understandable reasons, something of a fire-brigade mentality among donors. A big conflagration – such as Darfur – attracts generous donations. But getting funds for a long, smouldering, but far more destructive fire is a considerably more challenging task.So why is this so important for WFP? Because food aid can make a huge difference. For most people living with HIV/AIDS, drugs are still not available or affordable. But in the battle against HIV/AIDS, good nutrition can prolong their lives and keep them active and producing. And even for those fortunate enough to have access to anti-retroviral drugs, the medicine works better for the well nourished.There is also the fact that even in areas with the highest HIV prevalence, the vast majority of children between the ages of five and 15 are free of the virus. We need to do everything in our power to keep them that way. And while scientists continue to search for a vaccine and a cure for AIDS, the best hope we currently have is to keep children in school as long as possible. A recent World Bank study showed that young people with little or no education were twice as likely to contract HIV as those with a primary school education. The study also found that in comparison to children who do not go to school, those with an education were more likely to respond to HIV prevention campaigns and thus more likely to change behaviour that puts them at risk of contracting HIV. This is not to say that it is not serious – I saw for myself the horrendous plight of some two million people forced out of their homes, their livelihoods destroyed, women raped and whole families butchered. This dreadful injustice has rightly attracted the attention of the international press and world leaders.And WFP is there. So far, we are trucking and airlifting food aid to some 300,000 internally displaced people in the Darfur region and more than 100,000 refugees across the border in Chad. center_img There is, unfortunately, a tendency in some quarters to see Africa’s struggle with HIV/AIDS as “not our problem”. But we may soon encounter what amounts to societal meltdown. You can already see it in rural areas whose small communities are being abandoned and fields lie fallow. Children are raising other children and they are all lost and hungry.I therefore have one crucial message to our already generous donors and in particular to the newly expanded and booming European Union: thank you for the big donations for the emergencies that we all see on the evening news. But it is even more important to invest now in warding off this millennium’s most deadly scourge, before it is too late.James Morris is the executive director of the United Nations World Food Programme and the UN secretary-general’s special envoy for southern Africa.last_img read more

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