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House committee votes out Vermont jobs bill

first_imgThe House Committee on Commerce and Economic Development on Friday voted out its jobs bill with a favorable vote of 9-1-1. The bill assembles two dozen initiatives and focuses on the urgency of supporting business expansion and job creation in Vermont. It places special emphasis on enhancing the manufacturing and value-added agricultural sectors in Vermont.‘This bill sets forth a clear strategy for economic development and job growth,’ said Representative Bill Botzow, Chair of the Commerce Committee. ‘These are real, concrete programs we can employ even in times of constrained resources.’The bill enhances workforce training programs to help maximize opportunities for employees and provide a well trained pool of job applicants for employers. Workplace internships would be substantially expanded with state-wide coordination and administration. A tuition repayment program for graduates seeking jobs in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics will encourage young people to stay or return to Vermont.Several elements expand and enhance programs to bring new capital into the market for business expansion in Vermont. A new initiative creates an Office of the Creative Economy will provide support to creative enterprises like software development, new media, and innovative commercial goods. The bill also streamlines the process for housing developers who include low and moderate income housing in designated neighborhoods.A substantial part of the bill focuses on expanding the value-added agriculture sector through support of the Farm-to-Plate initiative, local food coordinators for sales to institutional customers, skilled meat-cutter apprenticeships, and technical assistance for manufacturing compliance with good agricultural practices.The Committee worked closely with the House Committee on Agriculture to shape policy on the agricultural economy. The bill was drafted in collaboration with the new administration and was informed by testimony from a wide variety of businesses, agencies, industry groups, lenders, and advisors. The bill now heads to the House Ways and Means Committee for further consideration before heading to the full House for its approval.last_img read more

Basketball in Seesaw Petitions!

first_imgAfter the injunction restraining order filed on the Liberia Basketball Association two days congress, which was to begin on Friday, August 7, the Rufus Anderson’s leadership overturned the petition.Reports said the Aggrieved Stakeholders’ bond for their petition valued about US$50,000 but the Anderson leadership upturned it with a bond of US$100,000.His Honor Judge Yusuf D. Kaba of the Sixth Judicial Circuit Court, Montserrado County, gracefully lifted the Injunction and Temporary Restraining Order; hence Rufus Anderson’s administration has a “new march order” to go ahead with congress.After 24 hours – on Wednesday, August 12, the Aggrieved Basketball Stakeholders, through the Sayeh and Sayeh Law Firm, headed by Cllr. Wilfred Sayeh, filed another Stay Order, to halt the Anderson’s order.In a telephone interview with the spokesperson of the aggrieved stakeholders, Calvin Diggs, he said they are expected to appear before Judge Kaba today (Thursday) at 2:00pm to give or provide evidence why the stay order should be maintained.Unconfirmed report said the aggrieved stakeholders, which include Malcolm Joseph and Ali Sylla are expected to display dossier of constitutional crisis and inappropriate financial records to defend their action.Also, in a telephone interview with Rufus Anderson, he explained that the “Stay Order” came in the conclusion of finalizing a “new day” for the congress.Though, he minced his words, Anderson stated that the LBA is resolved to “win the case” and stage the congress.The Ministry of Youth and Sports – the political governing body of the sports in the country and the “failed” negotiator between the Rufus Anderson administration and the aggrieved party has promised not intervene in the court’s proceedings.Deputy Minister for Sports, Henry Yonton, said the Ministry respects the court and would abide by any decision.The President of the Liberia National Olympic Committee, Philipbert Brown, said the court is the right place to settle disputes, so the LNOC also supports any decision.It may be recalled that the court, in its June Term AD 2015, ordered the writ under the hand of Ellen Hall, Clerk of Court to stop the fifth planned basketball congress. The first date was January 28; later to February 6 and 7, and to February 17 and 18 and then to April 7.“Respondents are hereby ordered restrained, enjoined, refrained and prohibited from conducting 1st Respondent (LBA) Congress and elections until otherwise ordered by this court,” the writ said.Since January 2015, with the resumption of all sporting activities across the country after the Ebola outbreak, there has been wrangling over illegitimacy, bogus clubs and financial misapplication in the Liberia Basketball Association.The Ministry of Youth and Sports in collaboration with the Liberia National Olympic Committee (LNOC) fruitlessly intervened to resolve the crisis between the LBA leadership, headed by Rufus Anderson and the Aggrieved Stakeholders, led by Calvin Diggs, Malcolm Joseph, Ali Sylla and Edwin Fahnbulleh.Recently, during a protest against Rufus Anderson’s administration, two entrances of the Sports Commission were sealed off (wielded) and players displayed placards, which was climaxed with a bloody fight between the parties at the Liberia Baptist Seminary.After several unsuccessful attempts, the Ministry of Youth and Sports wrote the continental governing body of basketball, FIBA-Africa to intervene in the LBA leadership case.Deputy Sports Minister Henry Yonton said in his letter dated 3 April that on the ongoing stalemate was due to the unremitting contestation for “legitimacy and expiration of tenure” by some aggrieved members, structured under the named: Liberia Basketball Presidents Association.Other issues included accusation against the MYS for releasing funds to Anderson’s leadership when the crisis was yet to be resolved, and accusing the MYS as deceptive practice in the resolution of the case.Though Minister Yonton rejected the accusation of any form of deception in the search for solution in the LBA crisis, it could not address why it released U$58,000 to Anderson’s administration.In spite of their argument an MOU was signed and an elections commission, headed by Yanqueh Borsay appointed.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

LIB’s Female Artist Managers Speak Up

first_imgHere is the reality: behind the scenes, women work. They are in the thoughts behind directed videos, produce music and manage the careers of up and coming artists. Those that manage artists, when equipped with the right skills, professional passion, patient and most importantly, belief in their artists, are the most important persons when it comes to getting the artist a major deal. Just ask Alice Yawo and Bernice Mulubah.Sadly, women in the music industry are mostly invisible, underrepresented and ignored. But that is except for these two: Alice Yawo and Bernice Mulubah, two of Liberia’s top entertainment promoters.These two women, one a blogger, entertainer and artist manager, and the other a popular Afro/Gbema/R&B artist and DenG’s manager, are running the business side of some of the biggest names in Liberia’s music scene. And that means having to put aside fickleness, unprofessionalism, bias, being disrespectful and not being transparent, for their careers to flourish.“Jon Bricks and I had a personal relationship before I started managing him; and I managed him for a few months. As of late, we are no longer together intimately or professionally due to some legal issues that we are facing with one another,” stated Bernice Mulubah, Jon Bricks’s former manager.The mixing of business with pleasure has, however, led to unmanaged Liberian artists viewing the females who manage the careers of their counterparts as someone they could possibly have intimate relationships with. They also view them as devotees, best friends and breadwinners. “Everyone has been wondering this for some time now so I am glad that I can publicly announce it. DenG and I are not in a relationship. As much as I hate discussing whether or not I am in a relationship, I will proudly say DenG and I aren’t in a dating relationship,” said Alice. “Our current relationship is strictly business and far from personal; and I try to stay away from his personal life as much as I can. DenG is a great man, very humble, quiet and any woman who gets to be with him will most certainly be a blessed woman. However, that woman is not me, my blessings lie somewhere else.”For now, mixing professionalism with a relationship is “played out.” The exploits of artists like DenG, whose career is being steered by a female manager, has led to a lot of artists admitting that the role of a female manager is not to marry you, but to make you rich.According to Alice, who has heard the numerous allegations that DenG’s career is “failing” because he lacks a sound management team and music videos, DenG’s career is not dipping, nor is it soaring either.“DenG’s career isn’t taking a dip as far as I am concerned. And if it was, it most certainly wouldn’t be due to the media or a social propaganda. I am very cautious of his career and if I felt as though it was taking a plunge I would rapidly act upon it and get it where I need it to be. I wouldn’t consider any Liberian musician’s career as ‘soaring,’ so most certainly DenG’s career isn’t soaring,” she added via Facebook. “I have slowed down work for DenG, which may seem to most as his career taking a plunge; however, that is not the case. DenG’s brand is still a big brand internationally and a few days ago he won “Best Artist” and “Song of the Year” at the Liberia Entertainment Award; so, DenG’s career isn’t taking a plunge, not on my watch, lol.” In the meantime, more male artists are now optimistic about finding a female manager, because, according to them, females are more devoted to their work.“There is a lot that goes into being a successful manager. I will say sacrifice is very important in playing a good managerial role. Working with DenG, I had to sacrifice many of my personal life to reach our team’s yearly goals. Being a young woman I have many relationship offers but I have to turn them down because I do not have time to invest in a boyfriend because my entire day is dedicated to DenG and how we could better his brand. (Well that’s past tense now) But yeah, sacrifice is very prominent,” she said.“On the behalf of my team, I will like to apologize for the poor action displayed by us publicly on social media in the past. My team is a family, and just like every other family there will be disagreements, arguments and even fights. We are far from perfect, trust me, but we will disagree to agree and then get back to business. My team hasn’t broken up, we have gone through worst situations than the public may be able to comprehend, but God built our bond and that bond won’t be broken unless God himself let it loose. So may the Holy Ghost fire burn all those who are trying break us up. Amen.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more