UVU Wrestling’s Orndorff Places Third, Qualifies for U.S. National Greco Team
Written by FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailTULSA, Okla.-Friday, Utah Valley University wrestling standout freshman heavyweight Tate Orndorff earned a place on the U.S. National Greco-Roman team as he placed third at the 2018 Senior Greco-Roman World Team trials Thursday and Friday at Tulsa, Okla.Orndorff, a 6’0″ 285-pounder out of Spokane, Wash. earned a second-place finish in the challenge portion of the tournament, placing third overall after going 3-1 at the event at 130 kilos.He obtained victories in his first two bouts over the Minnesota Storm’s Donny Longendyke and Malcolm Allen of St. Paul, Minn. respectively.Orndorff fell just short of the reaching the championship finals as he was defeated by Michigan’s decorated two-time NCAA Championships finalist Adam Coon.Nevertheless, he resiliently bounced back, taking a 6-5 victory over Sunkist Kids Wrestling Club team member Dom Bradley, ensuring himself a place on the U.S. National Greco Team.Orndorff will commence competition on the mat for the Wolverines as a redshirt freshman this upcoming season.His UVU teammate, Taylor LaMont, also competed at this event, as he finished the world team trials with a 1-1 showing. Brad James June 23, 2018 /Sports News – Local UVU Wrestling’s Orndorff Places Third, Qualifies for U.S. National Greco Team Tags: Adam Coon/Dom Bradley/Donny Longendyke/Greco-Roman National Team/Malcolm Allen/Tate Orndorff/Taylor LaMont/UVU Wrestling
Indiana Forward Wants To Make 2019 The Year A Hate Crime Law Passes
Mike Leppert, who serves as Indiana Forward’s campaign manager, and Mindi Goodpaster, United Way of Central Indiana’s vice president of public policy, are championing the effort, which includes support from the likes of Indiana giants Eli Lilly and Company, Salesforce Inc. and Cummins Inc. Its executive committee is dotted with names from the Indiana Youth Group, the Muslim Alliance of Indiana and the state’s American Civil Liberties Union.Leppert said Tuesday the coalition is pushing for specific language in the law that would protect people targeted on the basis of their race, ethnicity, religion, national origin, sex, disability, gender identity or sexual orientation and that would push courts to further consider sentence aggravators or enhancements in such crimes. The group views these elements as “non-negotiable,” he added.A sentence aggravator would allow a judge to increase the severity of a sentence within a certain crime classification. This is determined if more than half of the evidence indicates an underlying motive, such as attacking a person because of their race.Sentence enhancements are similar but allow the crime to be charged at a higher level, such as moving a charge from a Level 1 felony to a Level 2 felony. Such a decision must be determined beyond a reasonable doubt.Indiana currently provides a definition for bias crimes in general terms, noting any crime in which a person, group of people or property was harmed or damaged due to its association with a “color, creed, disability, national origin, race, religion, or sexual orientation,” granting those involved in the judicial system a basis to determine aggravating factors.The Indiana Supreme Court also determined in a 2003 case, Witmer v. State, that judges can consider a victim’s characteristics to justify an enhanced sentence. In this case, the court determined a murder victim, 17-year-old Sasezly Richardson, was targeted because she was black and used this conclusion to justify a longer sentence for the perpetrator, Alex Witmer.Sen. Mike Young, R-Indianapolis, and former Senate President Pro Tem David Long, R-Fort Wayne, used this ruling and Indiana courts’ virtually limitless power in considering case evidence as justification for blocking last session’s hate crimes bill, which never received a vote.While Leppert agreed these powers exist, he said case decisions show they are rarely used.“What’s lacking is the state’s response to things that are illegal and intolerable,” Leppert said.Goodpaster and Leppert added the state has little to lose by enforcing Indiana Forward’s legislation, which can only be enacted when a crime occurs.“The biggest misconception is that we’re trying to control thoughts or beliefs. Someone has to commit a crime to be punished,” Goodpaster said. “It is not a crime to think or believe, but as soon as you commit a crime against a person, a group of people or their property, this law will affect you.”“If I were them, I would pass this as soon as possible,” Lepper added, noting that extended support from Gov. Eric Holcomb is placing considerable weight on Republican leaders in both chambers.Holcomb first called for legislation in a tweet this summer after a Jewish temple in Carmel, Congregation Shaarey Tefilla, was vandalized with anti-Semitic symbols. He further outlined the necessity of the law in his legislative agenda presented earlier this month, where he modeled his recommendation on the state’s existing workplace harassment prevention policy.“I fully appreciate the ‘where does the list stop’ discussion,” Holcomb said Tuesday, referring to prior hate crimes law debates. “However, we’ve had an employment policy in place in this office since 2005 that’s worked just fine, and so I didn’t want to take a step back from that.”The harassment policy includes protections for all of the characteristics Indiana Forward wants included in a bias crimes law, as well as guidance for those harassed for their national origin, ancestry and veteran status.“It’s not just the right thing to do, it’s long overdue. I’ll take some responsibility for it not being checked off the list already,” Holcomb said.The Indiana Forward website provides additional information about the group’s 2019 policy goals. Lawmakers will reconvene for the legislative session on Jan. 3.Erica Irish is a reporter for TheStatehouseFile.com, a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students. FOOTNOTE: Editor’s note: Mike Leppert writes a column for TheStatehouseFile.com. FacebookTwitterCopy LinkEmail Indiana Forward Wants To Make 2019 The Year A Hate Crime Law PassesDecember 18, 2018 By Erica IrishTheStatehouseFile.com INDIANAPOLIS—There’s little doubt the hate crimes discussion in Indiana will dominate conversation through the next legislative session.And a coalition of several hundred state business leaders and interest groups want to see to it that lawmakers do more than talk by upping the pressure on them to finalize a bill that better defines and punishes bias crimes.Earlier in December, the United Way of Central Indiana announced the coalition as the Indiana Forward movement, a campaign designed to lobby for a bias crimes bill in 2019. The self-described “broad and bipartisan group” encompasses voices from the state’s faith communities, colleges and universities, nonprofits, employers and more.
Speech: Post-Brexit State Aid in the UK
Juliette Enser, Director, State AidIntroductionI am Juliette Enser and I am currently leading the CMA’s preparations to take on an entirely new role: that of the post-Brexit state aid authority for the UK. I am here to talk about those preparations and what the future regime might look like.What are the current state aid rules?The EU’s state aid control rules can be seen in the context of much broader attempts, historically, to bring about a level playing field between EU member states in order to underpin their economic integration. From the earliest days of the European Economic Community, the European Commission was entrusted with controlling state subsidies to undertakings, acting as a neutral arbiter between the member states and limiting the ability of those states to distort competition and trade through state support of industry.The UK government has been a strong supporter of the EU state aid framework. It is therefore perhaps unsurprising that the issue of ongoing state aid control, overseen by a body independent of government, has formed an important part of discussions about the future trading relationship between the EU and the UK. While the discussions about the UK’s future state aid regime tends to focus on its relevance to that trading relationship, it is also doubtless the case that a commitment by the UK to independent state aid control – which is deeper than the basic anti-subsidy regime applicable to all WTO members – may be attractive to other trading parties with whom the UK may negotiate trade agreements in the future.What is meant by the state aid rules?As some of you may not practise regularly in this area, it might be worth summarising how the system currently works.Articles 107 and 108 of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union provide that all aid granted using state resources is subject to upfront control by the European Commission. The concept of aid is a broad one, covering virtually any advantage conferred on a business by the state or through state resources, whether at a local, regional or national level and whether through expenditure (for example, in the form of grants or preferential loans), guarantees or reliefs and exemptions from taxes and charges.Article 107 is structured as a prohibition on the grant of aid. However, Article 107 (and certain other Treaty articles in respect of specific sectors such as transport and agriculture) provides that aid granted for certain objectives can, and in some cases must, be approved as being ‘compatible with the internal market’. In addition, Article 106 of the Treaty operates to permit member states to support undertakings in the provision of ‘services of general economic interest’ (for example, certain activities in the postal sector).Many aid measures are now exempt from the requirement for prior approval under a series of block exemptions (or similar measures) that cover so-called industrial aid, as well as agricultural and fisheries aid and aid to support services of general economic interest. This enables the European Commission to concentrate its resources on dealing with those cases which are most liable to distort competition and trade. Indeed, the latest available data from the European Commission suggests that over 90% of new aid measures fall under a block exemption. Aid falling within block exemptions is subject to certain reporting and transparency requirements but, importantly, it can be implemented without prior approval. In addition, low-value aid is often exempt from controls.Aid which does not fit within a block exemption falls to be reviewed by the European Commission on a case-by-case basis, which gives rise to a standstill obligation meaning that the aid measure cannot be implemented until approval has been obtained.To assist in this process of analysing notifiable aid measures, the European Commission has adopted a series of detailed guidelines outlining how it exercises the discretion afforded to it by the Treaty. This includes sectoral guidelines (such as broadband network connectivity) as well as horizontal guidelines (for example, on rescue and restructuring aid or regional aid).In areas where no guidelines exist, the European Commission will assess the aid against a set of broad principles. In all cases, the European Commission seeks to answer a number of well-defined questions: whether the aid is directed at achieving an acceptable policy objective; whether the aid is an appropriate policy instrument to address that policy objective; whether the aid has an incentive effect such that it will change the behaviour of the aid recipient; and whether the aid is proportionate and involves only limited distortions of competition and trade.Much of the European Commission’s casework consists of examining aid which has been notified to it for approval. It also receives complaints and is under an obligation to consider sufficiently reasoned complaints from parties whose interests might be affected by the granting of the aid. In addition, the European Commission carries out its own monitoring of aid granted under the block exemptions and it may also carry out ‘own initiative’ investigations.In cases where the European Commission decides that aid which has come to its attention through a notification or otherwise is not approvable, it can block the aid or (in cases where the standstill obligation has not been observed and the aid has already been granted) order its recovery from the beneficiary. However, this is extremely rare – since 2000, there have been only 11 negative decisions in respect of aid measures in the UK.The EU regime operates for the most part in a bilateral way, involving only the European Commission and the member states. While the standstill obligation is directly effective – and can ground a declaration of illegality in the context of domestic judicial review proceedings – private litigation is rare in the UK.Clearly, there is much more that can be said about the legal concepts underlying the EU regime. Indeed, in contrast to the relative lack of national litigation, the European Commission’s state aid decisions are frequently challenged in the European Court. For example, if an advantage is conferred on all businesses (rather than one or a select few) the measure will not qualify as aid and the question of whether a particular measure is selective in its application such that it constitutes state aid has sometimes proved a difficult one for the European Commission and the European Court. However, there are plenty of sources of information about substantive state aid law, so instead I will now speak about my area of relative expertise which is the potential future UK regime and the CMA’s role within it. However, before I do so, it is worth noting that those EU legal concepts, and the case law that has grown up around them, are likely to be of continuing relevance to the UK’s post-Brexit state aid regime.When will there be a new UK regime and what will it look like?The question of when the new state aid regime becomes operational remains subject to the outcome of negotiations between the EU and the UK.However, as has been widely reported, the UK government is seeking to negotiate, as part of a Withdrawal Agreement with the EU, a period of adjustment beginning in March 2019 – the ‘implementation period’. Assuming that these negotiations are successful, the UK will remain within the EU’s state aid regime for the duration of the implementation period and the European Commission will continue to receive and assess notifications from UK aid grantors. In that scenario, the CMA will take on its new role only at the end of the implementation period.However, at this stage there remains uncertainty as to the outcome of the Withdrawal Agreement negotiations. We, alongside BEIS, and consistent with the overall UK government policy, are therefore working to ensure that the new regime is ready for March 2019 if necessary.The substance of the new regimeIn relation to the substance of the new regime, the government is intending to pass legislation in autumn 2018 under the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 to bring over the EU state aid rules, subject to certain technical modifications to ensure that the regime operates effectively in a domestic context. This includes bringing across the existing block exemptions covering all sectors of the economy and also giving effect to existing European Commission approvals. The expectation is that, from a substantive perspective, the regime will look very much like it does today – aid grantors and beneficiaries can work on the basis that it will be ‘business as usual’ in terms of rules they are used to applying.Section 6 of the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018 provides for the retention of EU law, modified as necessary to take account of the new domestic context. It also provides that EU case law, as it exists on or before exit day, will (or may) continue to be of relevance to the interpretation of retained EU law (whether or not in a modified form). At the risk of repeating myself, the substantive body of EU case law on the interpretation of the state aid provisions of the Treaty, and related case law, is likely to remain important for state aid practitioners at least in the short term, whatever shape our exit from the EU might take.The other point that is worth noting is the prospect that, as part of any future agreement with the EU, the UK may agree to remain in step with the EU state aid rules beyond the implementation period. In other words, the UK may commit to what is being called ‘dynamic alignment’ with the EU rules. Of course, the extent to which this will be the case is a matter for negotiation between the UK government and the EU, the outcome of which remains uncertain.The CMA as enforcerIn April, the government made public its intention that the CMA should take over the European Commission’s existing role of monitoring and enforcing the state aid rules for the whole of the UK. However, the framework for state aid law and policy will be the responsibility of government, as is now the case for the framework for competition law and policy.What does this mean for the CMA?Firstly, in practical terms, we need to make sure that we have the people, skills, and infrastructure to take on this new function from March 2019. Since April, we have been pursuing a programme of work to make sure we achieve this.Our new role means we will need to examine notified aid, investigate complaints and, more generally, ensure compliance with the rules. We anticipate that we will be dealing with 20 to 30 cases annually, spanning a wide range of industries. However, that estimate is based on past practice, which has seen the UK give relatively low amounts of aid compared to many other EU countries, as a percentage of GDP – we are alive to the possibility that economic turbulence or political changes could give rise to an expansion in UK state aid figures. As an organisation, we would need be in a position to respond to such changes and we are actively considering how we might do so quickly should the need arise.Our current thinking is that to deal with a workflow based on historic levels of aid, we will need to add staff to the organisation, most but not all of which will sit in a dedicated state aid group that we are establishing to ensure that we can expand our skills in this new area as quickly as possible. This group – which will be led by a Senior Director who we will be recruiting for shortly – will take forward our casework, deal with complaints and monitor aid which has been granted. We anticipate that it will contain individuals with a range of skills and experience, including lawyers and economists and those with a background in financial analysis. We anticipate that staff working on state aid matters will be based in our London, Edinburgh, Cardiff and Belfast offices.Our campaign for the first recruits to our state aid teams closed last week and I hope that some of you have already decided to apply. If not, however, do not worry as our plan is to build up the team to full strength over time so this will not be the last opportunity to join the team. I should underline that this is a genuine opportunity: a rare and – to my mind – exciting chance to join the team at the inception of a new regime and therefore coming with the opportunity to shape that regime.Those new recruits will be joining an organisation which obviously already has expertise across a broad range of markets and competition issues, much of which will be valuable in considering how to approach state aid cases. We are also fortunate within the CMA to have a number of staff who have already practised in the area of state aid. And we have been adding to the skills of our existing staff through a programme of state aid-specific training, which we will be enhancing for the benefit of our new recruits.We have also been working on establishing the infrastructure needed to support the operation of the state aid regime. For example, we will need a new IT solution to accept notifications and reports about aid. Those of you who have been involved with implementing IT solutions will know that this can be demanding work, but we have an experienced team working on the project and are comfortable that we are on track to accept notifications through an online system in March 2019, if we are called upon to do so.We are still considering how to go about investigating and taking decisions with respect to state aid cases. However, we are acutely aware that the state aid portfolio involves making decisions on expenditure by elected public bodies and that some of our cases will be politically controversial. Clearly, we have a demonstrable track record of independence in how we go about our work. Indeed, it is this independence that makes the CMA attractive to trading partners as a state aid authority. We are therefore thinking hard about how the design of the regime can support that independence.To reiterate, we are still working on our processes. It is thus too early for me to set out in detail how we intend to liaise with aid grantors, beneficiaries and third parties. However, I can confirm we are expecting that many of the key elements of the EU system, including pre-notification discussions, annual reporting of aid, transparency of aid measures, complaints and evaluations, will be included in the domestic system.Having spoken to users of the EU system, I know that the duration of cases – the time taken to reach a decision – can sometimes be a source of frustration. In that context, we have some advantages when compared to the European Commission. For example, our lines of communication with those who have relevant information may be shorter and we will not face the same linguistic challenges as the European Commission. However, I do not wish to raise expectations prematurely – we will be delivering an entirely new function and it would be unrealistic for us at this stage to make any commitments about the speed with which we will tackle cases.Finally, we are aware that users of the state aid system, including potential complainants, will want to understand how the new regime will operate. We are therefore working to produce guidance, which we expect to publish early next year – this guidance will explain how we will conduct substantive assessments as well as how to notify us of a new aid measure or initiate a complaint. This will supplement the legislation being prepared by government which we expect to be brought forward this year.
Twiddle Announces 2017 Fall Tour Dates & Halloween Show
After a successful Tumble Down last weekend, which saw Grateful Dead bassist Phil Lesh sit in with the Vermont quartet, Twiddle has announced their 2017 fall tour dates. In addition to their previously scheduled performances to close out the summer, which includes two nights at the Boulder Theater with Kitchen Dwellers and Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, two nights with Railroad Earth to replace moe. in their co-headlining tour, and more throughout the midwest, Twiddle has just announced a complete 22-date Fall tour.Bernie Sanders Pens Letter Of Appreciation To TwiddleTwiddle’s Fall tour will begin with a three-night run at The Warehouse FTC in Fairfield, CT on 8/31-9/2 and extend through Salt Lake City, UT at The State Room on 10/31 for a special Halloween performance. Joining Twiddle on their Fall tour are the Hip Abduction and Gene Evaro Jr. Check out their Fall dates below, and head to the band’s website for a complete tour schedule.[photo by Daniel Ojeda]
County Dems Endorse Lawyer For County Executive Bid
Share:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window) Image via the Law Office of Richard J. Morrisroe.MAYVILLE – The Chautauqua County Democratic Committee has endorsed a Dunkirk City Attorney as its candidate for Chautauqua County Executive.County Chair Norman Green says 45-year-old Attorney Richard Morrisroe will take on Chautauqua County Executive PJ Wendel in this fall’s election.Wendel was appointed as the county’s next Executive by lawmakers during the legislature’s re-organization meeting in January after New York State Senator George Borrello left the office.Morrisroe has a general law practice with offices in Dunkirk and Buffalo. He currently lives in Dunkirk with his wife, mother-in-law and two sons. Green additional says the Democratic Committee endorsed Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson for re-election and Congressional candidate Tracy Mitrano.
Hagen announces NCUA breach investigation
1SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr by: Heather AndersonNCUA Inspector General James Hagen said Monday he would investigate the agency’s mishandling of sensitive member data. An external flash drive was lost earlier this year during an exam at the $13 million Palm Springs FCU.Hagen’s investigation will go beyond an audit to determine if the NCUA had adequate controls in place to protect the information. The IG also said he would review the agency’s decision to keep the incident from the public and investigate an NCUA leak regarding the breach. continue reading »
Leading hoteliers support the enactment of the Law on Unrated Construction Land
“Despite the proposal of the tourism sector that the price of land lease as one of the essential elements of the future relationship between landowners and tenants be regulated by law, the text of the bill still leaves it regulated by a Decree or bylaw. Such a solution, in the absence of a proposal for the text of the Lease Agreement, unfortunately leaves the price unknown at this time. In addition, the bill provides for different rents for individual coastal counties, through the so-called. coefficient of economic profitability, which in HUT and HUP they consider unnecessary, unargued and from the aspect of business under equal market conditions a questionable solution” The Government of the Republic of Croatia instructed on the issue of the law on unrated construction land Bill on unrated construction land in the second parliamentary reading, which will be held on Wednesday, April 15, 2020. The Croatian Tourism Association (HUT) and the Croatian Employers ‘Association (HUP) together with the two largest national professional associations in tourism, the Croatian Camping Association and the Croatian Hotel Employers’ Association, support the adoption of the Law on Unrated Construction Land adopted by the Government. to solve one of the most important issues important for the development of Croatian tourism, especially camping. However, the full assessment of this legal solution is prevented by two open issues: lease price i proposed difference in the amount of the lease depending on the area of activity, point out in their joint statement HUT, HUP, the Croatian Camping Association and the Croatian Hotel Employers’ Association. HUT and HUP support the adoption of the Law on Unrated Construction Land and consider its adoption one of the key issues of Croatian tourism The tourism sector has been pointing out for years that the unresolved issue of tourist land is one of the key obstacles to opening the full investment potential in the tourism sector. HUT and HUP believe that the final text of the law as well as bylaws and other acts that follow will enable its implementation, which unfortunately was not the case with the existing law, and emphasize that it is necessary to adopt all acts necessary for the implementation of the new legal solution. . RELATED NEWS: PROPOSAL OF THE LAW ON UNPRECEDENTED LAND SENT FOR SECOND PARLIAMENTARY READING It is especially important for tourism companies to change the land use model from a co-ownership community to a lease model that ensures a long-term legal certain land use, given that the lease term is 50 years. Attachment: Bill on unrated construction land
Arsenal’s board tell Freddie Ljungberg to ‘wait and see’ after he demands managerial appointment
Advertisement Comment Ljungberg has won just one of his five matches in charge (Picture: Getty)‘I’ve said to them [the board] they need to make a decision.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘We are here to help and the staff are trying to chip in but a decision has to be made so we can have the same resources as other clubs.“When I say that they say I “have to wait and see”.Arsenal were second best throughout their defeat to City and the Gunners face in-form Everton at Goodison Park in their next fixture.Questioned further on his message to the board, Ljungberg believes the uncertainty is affecting his side’s performances on the pitch.‘It’s a great honour to do this but Per (Mertesacker) is an academy manager and is doing two jobs in one go,’ said the Swede.‘I’ve said I think it needs to be cleared up, to make a decision so everyone knows.‘That’s something I’ve said but it’s totally up to the club. I’m very honoured and I’ll do what I can but it’ll be good to make a decision regardless of what it is.’MORE: Freddie Ljungberg pins blame on Sead Kolasinac as Manchester City punish 10-man Arsenal Metro Sport ReporterMonday 16 Dec 2019 5:47 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link2.5kShares Arsenal’s board tell Freddie Ljungberg to ‘wait and see’ after he demands managerial appointment Advertisement Freddie Ljungberg has urged the Arsenal board to take action (Picture: Getty)Freddie Ljungberg has revealed Arsenal’s board have told him to be patient after the Swede urged the club’s hierarchy to make a managerial appointment.The Gunners lost 3-0 to Manchester City at the Emirates on Sunday to continue Ljungberg’s poor run as interim boss in north London.The club had been willing to let Ljungberg take charge for the remainder of the season when he was named interim boss following Unai Emery’s sacking in late November but one win in five games has all but ruled the Swede out of the running.
UPDATED: Governor Wolf: Title IX Proposals Hurt Crime Victims and Weaken Sexual Assault Protections
UPDATED: Governor Wolf: Title IX Proposals Hurt Crime Victims and Weaken Sexual Assault Protections SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Education, National Issues, Press Release This release has been updated to include the Wolf Administration’s final public comments, submitted today to U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos on proposed Title IX Changes Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf sent a letter to U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos expressing his deep concern for the department’s proposed regulations addressing K-12 and postsecondary institutions’ obligations to respond to allegations of sexual harassment and sexual assault under Title IX.“I’m appalled at the proposed Title IX changes that could make it more difficult for students who have experienced sexual violence to find the support they need on campus,” Governor Wolf said. “Today marks three years since my administration launched It’s On Us. Pennsylvania’s program was the first statewide effort to combat sexual violence on college campuses and we are making progress. While Pennsylvania is doing more for victims, the federal government is turning its back. Secretary DeVos must reverse course.”Working with advocates, educators, administrators, law enforcement and campus safety officials, Title IX coordinators, and experts, Pennsylvania sought to identify prevention and response efforts that help break down the formal and informal barriers that so many survivors face.From that work, Pennsylvania launched the first state-level “It’s On Us” campaign in the nation and has invested nearly $3 million in evidence-based programs on college and university campuses that create better systems and standards for sexual assault reporting and response.Gov. Wolf’s letter to Sec. DeVos outlines the reasons why the proposed Title IX changes will set back the work being done in Pennsylvania.From the letter:“These proposed changes send a dangerous message that sexual harassment and sexual assault do not warrant action from our schools and campuses. If adopted, they would also undermine decades of progress built on the foundational understanding that schools have an obligation to effectively prevent and address gender-based discrimination, harassment, and violence to ensure that all students have equal access to a full education.“These protections did not come easy – they were the result of hard-fought battles, personal sacrifice, and tireless advocacy on the part of victims of crime and their families who demanded more from elected officials and from those leading education institutions to move from a place of “that is not our role” to an understanding that we cannot separate the impacts of violence on the ability of students to access the opportunities that education provides.”“In recent years, survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault have bravely stepped forward to share their stories and demand change. However, for every survivor that makes that choice, there are many more who keep quiet, concerned they will not be believed, or that speaking up could lead to more harm than good.“By proposing to eliminate many of the tools and approaches that have chipped away at longstanding challenges of underreporting and unsafe climates that permit sexual violence, harassment, and discrimination to take place, the U.S. Department of Education will effectively take us back to a time where these issues were hidden away, unacknowledged and unaddressed.“We cannot go back. We cannot tell survivors that they cannot be helped unless their victimization fits narrowly-defined criteria, or if they are willing to undertake the significant burden of a prescribed disciplinary process that prioritizes unfounded fears over evidence-based concerns for individual and collective safety and well-being.“I strongly urge the Department to reconsider its proposed rulemaking and encourage members of Congress to explore ways to strengthen our laws to ensure all education environments are ones where students can come forward and access the rights, resources, and supports they deserve, and that Title IX should guarantee.”Pennsylvanians are encouraged to submit a comment to the U.S. Department of Education here. Submissions close at 11:59 p.m. today, Jan. 30. The Governor’s Office’s will also submit comments, which can be viewed here.Read the full letter here or view on Scribd. Read the full comments here or view on Scribd.Full text of the letter:Dear Secretary DeVos:As governor of Pennsylvania – and as a parent and grandparent – I write to express my deep concern regarding the U.S. Department of Education’s proposed regulations addressing K-12 and postsecondary institutions’ obligations to respond to allegations of sexual harassment and sexual assault under Title IX of the Education Amendments Act of 1972.These proposed changes send a dangerous message that sexual harassment and sexual assault do not warrant action from our schools and campuses. If adopted, they would also undermine decades of progress built on the foundational understanding that schools have an obligation to effectively prevent and address gender-based discrimination, harassment, and violence to ensure that all students have equal access to a full education.Since launching the first statewide It’s On Us program in the nation to address campus sexual violence in 2016, my administration has listened to and partnered with students and professionals who are on the front lines of this work – advocates, educators, administrators, law enforcement and campus safety officials, Title IX coordinators, and experts – to identify prevention and response efforts that help break down the formal and informal barriers that so many survivors face. I’m proud that Pennsylvania has invested nearly $3 million in evidence-based programs on college and university campuses that create better systems and standards for sexual assault reporting and response.These efforts were born from a simple premise: Sexual harassment, violence, and discrimination should not be part of any student’s education. Unfortunately, data suggest that these experiences are far too common, and often go unreported and unaddressed:Nearly 20 percent of girls between the ages of 14 and 17 experience sexual assault. More than one in five women and one in 20 men experience sexual violence during their college years. One in three adolescents will experience dating violence. One in four students who are sexually assaulted drop out of school. These statistics are deeply troubling and a call to action for educators, community members, and leaders entrusted with ensuring the safety and well-being of all students.In recent years, survivors of sexual harassment and sexual assault have bravely stepped forward to share their stories and demand change. However, for every survivor that makes that choice, there are many more who keep quiet, concerned they will not be believed, or that speaking up could lead to more harm than good.The Department’s proposed rules would make an already impossible choice more impossible. They would further disincentivize, and in many ways prohibit, decisions and actions taken by our education systems – both K-12 and postsecondary – to do right by students and communities. And they would restrict our educational institutions’ ability to meaningfully address violence, harassment, and discrimination that force too many of our young people to ask the question: do I want to feel safe, or do I want to stay on track with my education? By creating a system where sexual violence is more narrowly defined and even more difficult to report, the Department would help to continue a dangerous cycle of silence and violence that endangers the health and well-being of millions of students.Pennsylvania has long been a place where we demand more from our institutions of learning to ensure the safety of students. In 1988, the commonwealth became the first state in the nation to require that higher education institutions develop policies and procedures to prevent and address violent crime – including sexual assault – and other safety concerns on campus. Two years later, the federal Jeanne Clery Act – named in memory of a Pennsylvania student who was raped and murdered in her dorm room – was signed into law by President George H.W. Bush, extending those requirements to all postsecondary institutions across the country. The law would later expand to include explicit rights for campus sexual assault victims, as well as survivors of dating violence, domestic violence, and stalking.These protections did not come easily – they were the result of hard-fought battles, personal sacrifice, and tireless advocacy on the part of victims of crime and their families who demanded more from elected officials and from those leading education institutions to move from a place of “that is not our role” to an understanding that we cannot separate the impacts of violence on the ability of students to access the opportunities that education provides.By proposing to eliminate many of the tools and approaches that have chipped away at longstanding challenges of underreporting and unsafe climates that permit sexual violence, harassment, and discrimination to take place, the U.S. Department of Education will effectively take us back to a time where these issues were hidden away, unacknowledged and unaddressed.We cannot go back. We cannot tell survivors that they cannot be helped unless their victimization fits narrowly-defined criteria, or unless they are willing to undertake the significant burden of a prescribed disciplinary process that prioritizes unfounded fears over evidence-based concerns for individual and collective safety and well-being.I strongly urge the Department to reconsider its proposed rulemaking and encourage members of Congress to explore ways to strengthen our laws to ensure all educational environments are places where students can come forward and access the rights, resources, and supports they deserve, and that Title IX should guarantee.Sincerely,TOM WOLFGovernor  David Finkelhor et al., Children’s Exposure to Violence: A Comprehensive National Survey, U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, Office of Justice Programs, October 2009. Campus Sexual Violence: Statistics, RAINN. Dorothy L. Espelage, et al., “Bullying, Sexual, and Dating Violence Trajectories From Early to Late Adolescence,” U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, National Institute of Justice, April 2014. Michelle V. Porche et al., “Childhood Trauma and Psychiatric Disorders as Correlates of School Dropout in a National Sample of Young Adults,” Child Development, May 2011.Letter to Secretary Betsy D… by on ScribdGovernor’s Office of Pe… by on Scribd January 29, 2019
Church Commissioners co-file climate change resolution with Exxon
The Church Commissioners for England, who run the Church of England’s £6.7bn (€8.7bn) endowment fund, have co-filed a shareholders’ resolution calling on ExxonMobil to disclose the resilience of its business model in the wake of the Paris Agreement on climate change.The Church Commissioners said it was the first climate-related resolution they had filed with a US-based company.Alongside the Church Commissioners, the resolution has been led by the New York State Common Retirement Fund – the third-largest public pension fund in the US – with co-filers also including the Vermont State Employees’ Retirement System, the University of California Retirement Plan and The Brainerd Foundation.Altogether, the group of investors represents nearly $300bn (€275bn) in assets under management and more than $1bn in Exxon shares. The Paris UN Climate Conference concluded with world leaders committed to holding the rise in global temperatures well below 2˚C and to seek to restrict warming to 1.5˚C.The shareholder proposal asks ExxonMobil to publish an assessment of how its portfolio would be affected by a 2˚C target through, and beyond, 2040.Specifically, it said the assessment should include an analysis of the impacts of a 2˚C scenario on the company’s oil and gas reserves and resources, assuming a reduction in demand resulting from carbon restrictions.The resolution will be voted on at ExxonMobil’s annual general meeting unless it is withdrawn because of action taken in response by the company, or the company seeks to have the resolution struck off by the Securities and Exchange Commission.Edward Mason, head of responsible investment for the Church Commissioners of England, said: “Climate change presents major challenges to corporate governance, sustainability and ultimately profitability at ExxonMobil. As responsible investors, we are committed to supporting the transition to a low-carbon economy.”Mason added: “We need more transparency and reporting from ExxonMobil to be able to assess how they are responding to the risks and opportunities presented by the low-carbon transition.” Thomas DiNapoli, New York State comptroller and trustee of the New York State Common Retirement Fund, said: “The unprecedented Paris agreement to rein in global warming may significantly affect Exxon’s operations.“As shareholders, we want to know Exxon is doing what is needed to prepare for a future with lower carbon emissions.”DiNapoli added: “The future success of the company, and its investors, requires Exxon to assess how it will perform as the world changes.” Last year, Shell and BP agreed to disclose how they would be impacted by efforts to lower greenhouse gas emissions in response to similar shareholder proposals co-filed by the Church Commissioners and other investors and endorsed by the boards of both companies.More recently, 10 global oil and gas companies, including Shell and BP, announced their support for lowering greenhouse gas emissions to help meet the 2˚C goal.