SBA implements higher maximum loan sizes

first_imgOn the heels of completing final approvals of loans to nearly 2,000 firms that has been in its loan queue waiting for final approval of the Small Business Jobs Act, the US Small Business Administration has finished implementation of another major element of the bill: increasing maximum sizes in several of its loan programs.The changes – effective today – are permanent for general small business loans under SBA’s 7(a) guaranteed loan program, fixed asset loans through the 504 Certified Development Company program, Microloans, and International Trade, Export Working Capital and Export Express loans.  A temporary increase for SBA Express loans is good for one year. “Across the country, there are small businesses owners who are in a position to take that next step to grow and create jobs, and these larger loan sizes provide another tool to help them do just that,” SBA Administrator Karen Mills said.  “Whether they’re in the start-up phase and could use a microloan or are looking to take advantage of lower real estate prices and interest rates to buy a new building to expand, SBA loans can now be an even greater resource to help entrepreneurs and small business owners get the capital they need.“Additionally, temporarily increasing the cap on SBA Express loans from $350,000 to $1 million will allow more small businesses to take advantage of the streamlined approval process for working lines of credit and other capital they need,” Mills said.Under the Jobs Act provisions, SBA has permanently increased 7(a) and 504 limits from $2 million to $5 million, and for manufacturers and certain energy-related projects seeking 504 loans, to $5.5 million.  The maximum for International Trade and Export Working Capital loans also has been increased from $2 million to $5 million. SBA also permanently increased microloan limits from $35,000 to $50,000, helping larger entrepreneurs with start-up costs and small business owners in underserved communities. It also raised the limit on Export Express loans, from $250,000 to $500,000, and made the program permanent.SBA Express loan limits have been temporarily raised from $350,000 to $1 million for one year.  These loans offer a streamlined application process with reduced paperwork and approval often in a matter of days.  Unlike traditional 7(a) loans, SBA Express loans carry a 50 percent guarantee and can be used as revolving lines of credit – to help restock inventories and support larger revenue sales – which are particularly critical for small businesses as they emerge out of the recession.SBA’s own trends show increasing demand for larger loans.  The percentage of lending volume for guaranteed loans greater than $1.5 million has grown, from 13 percent of total dollars approved in fiscal year 2005 to 21 percent in fiscal year 2010, with many loans actually at the $2 million maximum.  In the 504 program, the percentage of loan volume committed to loans greater than $1.5 million also has grown, from 15 percent of total dollars approved in fiscal year 2005 to 25 percent in fiscal year 2010.SBA has already put in place the alternate size standard that expands eligibility for SBA-backed loans that was included in the Jobs Act, increasing the alternate size standard to include those small businesses with less than $15 million in net worth and $5 million in average net income.Additionally, Administrator Mills announced on Tuesday that all loan applications placed in the SBA’s loan queue by small business borrowers had received final approval, amounting to 1,939 loans for nearly $970 million.  The loans were able to make use of loan guarantees up to 90 percent and reduced fees extended under the Jobs Act. Many of the loans had been in the queue waiting for the extension since May.The bill provided the agency with enough funding to support an estimated $14 billion in lending to small businesses with the extension of higher guarantees and reduced fees in the top two loan programs, first implemented as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.The Jobs Act also includes additional resources to help increase lending to small businesses, including the State Small Business Credit Initiative announced today by the Department of Treasury that will support $15 billion in lending through local programs and the Small Business Lending Fund, which will provide capital to local, community banks to increase their lending to small businesses.Additionally, the new law contains $12 billion in tax credits targeted to small businesses, including higher deductions for investing in new machines and equipment, zero capital gains for those who buy and hold small business stocks for five years, and a doubling of the maximum deduction for startups to $10,000.  It also allows self-employed Americans to completely deduct health insurance costs for themselves and their families.  Source: SBA. 10.8.2010last_img read more

Lady Bulldogs Finish 2nd At New Castle

first_imgThe Batesville High School Swim team traveled to New Castle High School on Thursday evening. The Lady Bulldogs finished in second place to New Castle and defeating Eastern 3-way resultsTEAM SCORESWomenNew Castle Spartans 71; Batesville Bulldogs 52; Eastern Hancock Royals 38BULLDOG WINNERSWomenGwen Martin — 50 Freestyle (28.34)Maria Lopez — 100 Backstroke (1:19.61)NOTABLESBHS finished first in the 400 Free RelayMaria Lopez lead the team in individual points for the second meet in a rowUP NEXTThe Batesville Bulldogs swim team will be visiting Connersville for a multi-team meet against opponents the Connersville Spartans and Eastern Hancock Royals on Dec 3 at Connersville High [email protected] sure to keep up with all the latest news on Batesville Swimming teams on social media — Facebook and Instagram Courtesy of Bulldogs Coach Greg McMullen.last_img read more

Caz grad plays in FCS Bowl all-star game

first_imgHis father, Paul Shaffner, is currently the defensive coordinator and inside linebackers coach for the Colgate Raiders football team. Prior to joining the Raiders, he coached at Buffalo State.“In elementary school I would stay at Buffalo State for their August camp,” Shaffner said. “I would sit in on my dad’s meetings with his players and [stay up for] all the late nights. This was the first time that my love for football was apparent.”A three-year letterman for Cazenovia High School, Shaffner was named the 2015 New York State Sportswriters and Coaches Class B Player of the Year after helping his team to achieve a 13-0 record and the Class B state title.During his time as a Laker, the player contributed to a three-year Cazenovia record of 32-2.“The run that we had as a team my senior year of high school — all the way to the state championship — was one of the biggest thrills of my life,” Shaffner said. “[That] was something that I could not have dreamed of without the help of my high school coaches and my team. Without them, I never could have been honored as [player] of the year.”In Feb. 2016, Shaffner signed his national letter of intent to become a Colgate student and athlete.“[He] handled all of Colgate’s long-snapping duties for nearly his entire football career, in addition to his every-down role as a reserve linebacker,” said Colgate University Director of Athletic Communications John Painter. “The senior helped Colgate placekicker Chris Puzzi set program field goal records for ‘made in a season’ and ‘accuracy’ in both a season and career. Shaffner also helped Barney Amor punt for a 42.1-yard average that set Colgate’s season mark for a minimum of 40 attempts.”Shaffner points to a game-winning field goal against James Madison University (JMU) in the second round of playoffs as a highlight of his college football career.“I was the long snapper for that play, which usually goes unnoticed, and I would not have it any other way,” he said. “The moment someone notices a long snapper, they messed up . . . The second moment [that stands out] was going out to my dad on senior day. He has coached me my entire life, and it was an extremely emotional thing for me.”Shaffner has dreamed of playing in the NFL since he was in first grade.In January, he will play in front of scouts at exposure events in Dallas, Texas and Mobile, Alabama.Following these two events, Shaffner expects to have a much better understanding of his chances at playing professionally.Outside the realm of football, Shaffner is interested in pursuing a career in commercial real estate development.“Basically, I have to wait and see how things go for me,” he said. “In the meantime, I will continue to work my butt off both in the weight room and on the field.”Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Tags: all-star gameCaz gradCazenovia footballCazenovia High SchoolCazenovia High School athleticscolgate universityFCS BowlJake Shaffnerpostseason college footballstudent athlete The game is open to collegiate players who have completed their eligibility in NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision (FCS).“To be selected, it was a huge honor,” Shaffner said. “To be recognized for all of the hours and work I put into my craft is just something that makes [me] feel so good. Playing in the game was a very cool experience. I was surrounded by so much talent, [and it was] so fun to just go out and play. All star games . . . are a simplified version of football which brings you back to being a kid and playing in the backyard with all of your friends.”Although Shaffner did not start playing football until sixth grade, the game has always been a big part of his life.center_img By Kate HillStaff WriterIn December, Cazenovia High School graduate and Colgate University football player Jake Shaffner played in the sixth annual FCS Bowl — a postseason college football all-star game.Held in Deland, Florida, the game provided players from smaller colleges with the opportunity to shine in front of scouts from various professional football leagues, including the National Football League (NFL) and Canadian Football League (CFL).last_img read more

Six Nations 2019: Gregor Townsend has mixed feelings after loss to Wales

first_imgClinical Wales led 15-6 at the break, tries from Josh Adams and Jonathan Davies putting Wales on course to make it four wins in four matches.Scotland dominated the second half but only had a Graham try to show for its superiority as Wales dug in with its backs to the wall to stand on the verge of a Grand Slam, with Ireland to come in Cardiff on the final weekend. Related News Six Nations 2019: Ireland captain Rory Best set to retire after RWC 2019 “The players had to handle some things that went against them, injuries early on and reshuffling the backline and players out of position, but we showed what we were made of in that second half in terms of the rugby we want to play and in our character.”We had enough pressure in the second half to win. Strong defenses will force errors, but we forced a lot of penalties out of Wales.”I think [there were] five in the 22 that should normally lead to yellow cards with that pressure, but obviously we are very frustrated that didn’t happen.” Townsend was encouraged by a much-improved performance from his side but was left to reflect on what might have been after Scotland suffered its third loss in a row.FULL TIME | A win for Wales. A compelling game of rugby comes to an end as the visitors secure a victory by 7 points. #AsOne— Scottish Rugby (@Scotlandteam) 9 March 2019″There is partly frustration but a lot of pride,” he told BBC Sport. “We gave a true picture of what we are capable of.center_img Six Nations 2019: Wales edges Scotland to set up shot at Grand Slam Coach Gregor Townsend said there was “partly frustration but a lot of pride” for injury-hit Scotland after it was beaten 18-11 Saturday by Six Nations leader Wales at Murrayfield.Scotland lost its entire back three of Tommy Seymour, Blair Kinghorn and try-scorer Darcy Graham in a tight contest, with Stuart Hogg already missing.last_img read more

Conway Springs gets a big early-season win with 21-6 victory over Caney Valley

first_img Close Forgot password? Please put in your email: Send me my password! Close message Login This blog post All blog posts Subscribe to this blog post’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Subscribe to this blog’s comments through… RSS Feed Subscribe via email Subscribe Follow the discussion Comments Logging you in… Close Login to IntenseDebate Or create an account Username or Email: Password: Forgot login? Cancel Login Close Username or Email: Password: Lost your password? Cancel Login Dashboard | Edit profile | Logout Logged in as Admin Options Disable comments for this page Save Settings You are about to flag this comment as being inappropriate. Please explain why you are flagging this comment in the text box below and submit your report. The blog admin will be notified. Thank you for your input. There are no comments posted yet. Be the first one! Post a new comment Enter text right here! Comment as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments Comments by IntenseDebate Enter text right here! Reply as a Guest, or login: Login to IntenseDebate Login to Login to Twitter Go back Tweet this comment Connected as (Logout) Email (optional) Not displayed publicly. Name Email Website (optional) Displayed next to your comments. Not displayed publicly. If you have a website, link to it here. Posting anonymously. Tweet this comment Cancel Submit Comment Subscribe to None Replies All new comments by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Conway Springs had this game circled as one that was going to test the mantle of the young Cardinals so early in the season.Conway Springs would win 21-6 in a highly entertaining game. Cardinal Travis Wood would rush for 188 yards on 24 attempts – 74 of those came in the first quarter when he broke open at the 10:40 mark to give Conway Springs a 7-0 lead.The Cardinals would not score until the 9:15 mark of the second quarter when Luke Fisher ran for 11 yards. Bryce Davis, who was 3-of-3 on PAT kicks, would make the score 14-0 at the half. Fisher, who had 39 yards rushing and two touchdowns, scored his second at 9:14 in the third to make it 21-0.Caney Valley scored its only touchdown when Levi Wyrick completed a pass to Jacob Matthews for 7 yards with 24 seconds to go in the third.Conway Springs ended the game with 269 yards offense. Caney Valley had 228. Caney Valley had two turnovers, while Conway Springs had none.Caney Valley had 15 first downs to Conway Springs 10.Fisher led the Cardinals with 12 tackles including 10 solo and four assists. Jacob Koch had the team’s interception.Full stats are as follows: Conway Springs – Box Score Report – 9_14_2013last_img read more

Case dismissed against immigration officers

first_imgConspiracy to traffic drugsThree immigration officers and a security guard were on Wednesday freed from a conspiracy to traffic drugs charge.The four were charged following the discovery in 2016 of $1.3 million worth of cocaine on a Dynamic Airways flight, which left Georgetown for JFK International Airport.Immigration officers Oral David, 31; Orin Parris, 26; Raduskie Wright, 26; and security guard Diane Jackson, 33, were on trial before Magistrate Leron Daly for the offence.The Magistrate on Wednesday ruled that the prosecution failed to prove its case, as there was a lack of evidence to substantiate the charge. As such, the Magistrate dismissed the case against the defendants.It was alleged that on February 2, 2016, at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Timehri, the defendants conspired with each other and other persons to traffic the narcotics.The defendants were represented by Attorneys-at-Law George Thomas and Sandil Kissoon.According to reports, a package of cocaine was discovered in the baggage hold of the Dynamic Airways flight after it landed at JFK on February 2, 2016.Reports are that the cocaine was placed into the baggage hold by a local handler and was found by handling staff while they were clearing luggage from the aircraft upon its arrival in the USA.After the discovery, the Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) launched an investigation, which led to the arrest of the three immigration officers and the security guard.last_img read more


first_imgAodh Ruadh GAA NotesFootball Aodh Ruadh showed commendable grit to take full points from Burt on Saturday evening with a 0-10 to 0-11 win just sealed deep into injury time with a long range place kick from Peter Boyle. The first half started with the homesters getting the better of the play, but Aodh Ruadh worked their way back into the match with points from David Dolan, Anthony Boyle and Diarmaid McInerney making it a draw game at half-time, 0-7 apiece. At the break there was a torrential downpour with thunder and lightning thrown into the mix for good measure. Eamonn McGrath got the first score of the second half, but the Inishowen men reasserted themselves once more to take a two point lead. Again patience was a virtue for the Ernesiders in a game where massed defences and treacherous conditions didn’t exactly make for free-flowing football. Diarmaid McInerney hit two close range frees to tie things up for a second time before Boyle stepped up to smash the size five over the dixie with almost six minutes of added time gone. We have a team sheet and pictures from the game up on reserves returned to winning ways with a double scores away victory over Burt, 0-14 to 0-7 in a game where discipline wasn’t what it might have been from either side. Aodh Ruadh were quickest out of the traps, racing into a 0-4 to no score lead, but Burt came back to narrow the margin to a point. As the game moved into the second quarter Ballyshannon pushed on again to establish a three point half time lead. The pattern was repeated in the second half, with the visitors forging ahead and Burt doing their level best to reel them back in. However Aodh Ruadh remained in control through to the final whistle and consigned the Hibernian Park outfit to their first defeat of the season. Fine performances across the pitch for the Ernesiders, with Anthony Coughlan clearly enjoying the freedom around lar na páirce, with Michael McNeely providing the legs. There was a lot of solid defensive work especially from Calum ‘Cookie’ O’Halloran, Ryan Patton and Ciaran Slevin. Up front Michael ‘Sticky’ Ward was a great point man, ably supported by Dermot Slevin. We have pictures from the game up on aodhruadh.orgThe weekend’s results see Aodh Ruadh sitting on top of the division three and division three reserve tables. They will aim to maintain that momentum this weekend when they host fellow promotion-chasers Naomh Columba in Father Tierney Park this Saturday evening. The reserve game is at 6pm followed by the senior game at 7.30pm.The under 14s enjoyed a good, but hard fought 4-13 to 2-11 win in their away game against Ardara on Wednesday evening. The Aodh Ruadh men played their best football in the first half against a very strong breeze with Dylan Gallagher, Michael McKenna and Owen Doherty all in fine attacking and helping the visitors to a three point half time lead. The first 15 minutes of the second half saw the Ernesiders lying back expecting a strong wind advantage to do the work for them and the Ardara men drew level for the first time in the game. With some great defensive work from Tiarnan Flood Dolan, Pauric Keenaghan and Senan Rooney the Ballyshannon lads found the Ardara goal once again and finished the game very strong giving them an eight point advantage at the final whistle. The next outing is away to Four Masters on Wednesday evening in a must win game to keep their championship hopes alive. Throw in at Tír Chonaill park is 7.15pm and we’d like to see a good showing of Ballyshannon support down to that one. It has been a busy few days for the under 12s. They were in Enniskillen on Saturday where they won the plate competition. Check out the Aodh Ruadh CLG Facebook page for some pictures from Brewster Park. Then they braved biblical weather conditions on Monday evening to travel to Dungloe. Aodh Ruadh came from the Banks with a 3-3 to 1-9 draw against a fancied home town outfit. The next assignment for Aodh Ruadh is another trip, this time to Mountcharles next Monday where the senior game will be throwing in at 6.30pm. Training on Wednesday evening at 6.15pm and on Saturday at 10.45am.Aodh Ruadh under 10s travelled to Killybegs for a blitz last Saturday. The seniors got two good wins in their games against Killybegs and Bundoran, playing some super football in the process. Meanwhile the juniors also gave a good account of themselves in their matches against Killybegs, Bundoran and Pettigo. The Aodh Ruadh team that travelled to Fintra was: Ronan Barron, Danny Breen, Conor Cleary, Oisin Daly, Padraig Daly, Shane Delahunty, Darragh Flood Dolan, Michael Doogan, JJ Doran, Jack Gallagher, James Gallagher, Aaron Horan, Niamh Hughes, Eoghan Kelly, Art Mag Fhionnghaile, Lorc Mag Fhionnghaile, Grainne Maguire, Aoibheann McGarrigle, Shane McGloin, Cian McKenna, Ronan McKenna, Cillian Meehan, Aaron Neilan, Aonghus Sweeny, Aidan Sweeny, David Roper, Drew Ryan and Kerry Ryan. Many thanks to Killybegs for an enjoyable and well organised competition. Training on Wednesday at 6.30pm.The first under eight skills test of the year took place at training last Friday. There was a very high standard on the day and all ran off very smoothly thanks to the help of parents who marked at the various stations. We will have results for all players at this Friday’s training with medals for the top scores. Training at the usual time of 6.30pm.Under 6 training continues this Friday in Páirc Aoidh Ruaidh at 6.30pm.LadiesAodh Ruadh hosted an enjoyable blitz on Saturday in Father Tierney Park with teams attending from Killybegs, Saint Naul’s, Four Masters and Bundoran. The Aodh Ruadh team played very well, growing in confidence as the day went on. Pulling on the white and green for Ballyshannon were: Eva Breen, Ella Clancy, Alicia Clyne, Chloe Connolly, Mary Kate Finnegan, Aisling Gallagher, Ciara Gallagher, Danielle Gallagher, Laoise Kelly, Síofra Hughes, Ciara Lynch, Bridin Maguire, Laoise McGee, Sorcha McGonigle, Caitlin McLaughlin, Katie McMullin, Ruth McNulty, Danielle Masterson-Burrows and Leah O’Brien. We have some pictures from the day’s action up on HurlingAodh Ruadh put in their best performance of the year to date to take a 4-12 to 2-8 victory over Warrenpoint from Garvaghey in the Ulster Táin League. Most of the damage was done in a ten minute purple patch just before half time when the inside forward line of Peter Horan, Chris Kilgannon and Declan Browne caught fire. They blasted Ballyshannon to 4-6 to 1-5 half time lead. The Ernesiders took their foot off the pedal somewhat in the second half and the two goals conceded were both preventable, but overall it was a very pleasing team performance from Aodh Ruadh. Apart from the full forward line Conor McNeely worked his socks off at half forward, while out at midfield Paul Sheridan was calmness itself and made economical use the ball throughout. There will be no club action this week with Donegal facing Down at noon in the senior Ulster hurling championship quarter-final in Clones on Sunday. Aodh Ruadh will be represented by Paul Sheridan, Chris Kilgannon, Ciaran Kilgannon, Paul Hughes and Stephen Sheerin on the Donegal panel. That game will be the curtain raiser to the Tyrone Monaghan match.Congratulations and well done to Brendan Gillespie and Oisín Rooney who have been selected for the Ulster GAA Phoenix Academy 2014. This is a residential camp to be held at University of Ulster, Jordanstown on the 30th June and 1st July, where the top under 16 hurlers from throughout Ulster are brought together for a training camp in preparation for games against Galway and Connacht later in the summer. It’s a great honour for the two lads and the club to be selected for this Academy.Things are quiet on the playing fields at the moment due to the state exams, but the under 12 and under 16 leagues are beginning on 26th June when both teams are in action against MacCumhaill’s.Training as normal for all age groups on Sunday at 12 noon. We’re very encouraged by the large numbers we have training at under 8 and under 10 level and to see how well they’re improving since the start of the season. We would like to see more numbers turning out at under 12 so come along and try your hand at our great ancient game you’ll be surprised at the fun to be had.Cash for ClothesCash for Clothes for the month of June the Aodh Ruadh Juvenile Hurling Committee are having their annual Cash for Clothes fund-raising collection. We’re collecting unwanted clothing in good condition, shoes, belts and handbags, we’re also collecting blankets, sheets, curtains once they’re bagged separately. This is a good chance to clean out your wardrobes and help us raise funds for the promotion and development of underage hurling in Aodh Ruadh. Contact any of the following who will arrange collection of your unwanted clothing etc Tara Keenaghan 086-3331903, Fionnuala Gillespie 087-6668634 and John Rooney 086-2587793. Fantasy race for SamAfter a massive six games in the championship this weekend, there is a lot of movement on the leaderboard this week. Despite all the movers though, no one has been able to shift Gerry Gallagher and his team of Belleek Boys from the top. He has amassed 74 points. Hot on his heels is John Patton Jr and his team of Yes Patsy with 71 points along with Pat Gruddy and his team Mayo This Time also on 71 points. Philip Patton and his team County Colours are in joint fourth place along with John Kennedy and his team Tilly Lad, both on 67 points. High score of the week goes to Michael Melly and his team The Kop Kids with a total of 44 points. (Armagh-10, Mayo-10, Waterford-5, Kildare-10, Tubridy-6, Brosnan-3). At the opposite end of the table, we have Dan Warnock and his team Dan’s Your Man in last place with 13 points. A further point up the road on 14 is Sean O’Mahoney and his Rathmore Rebels. We then have four players on 17 points. Jim McGrath with I’d Say So, Shane McLoone with Young Boys Of Sound, Rebecca Patton with Legal Eagles and Pearse O’Neill with Best Cones Around. As always the leader board is available every Tuesday on, as well as Ballybookies, The Bridgend Bar, Owen Roe’s Bar and upstairs in Aras Aoidh Ruaidh.LottoCongratulations to Liam McGowan of Clyhore who won the €9,300 Aodh Ruadh Lotto jackpot last Sunday. The numbers drawn were 2, 4, 7, 9, 11 and 16. Next draw is in Dicey Reilly’s on Sunday at 8.30pm. The jackpot is €1,000 so get out there and buy your ticket; if you’re not in, you can’t win!The lotto team for McCosker’s Centra this Saturday is: SENIOR FOOTBALLERS.The lotto team for Kernan’s Spar this Saturday is: LADIES.You can receive the club notes by e-mail every Tuesday morning. To subscribe, enter your details on the website,, or e-mail your request to [email protected] NEWS: AODH RUADH EARN CRUCIAL WIN WITH 1 POINT VICTORY OVER BURT was last modified: June 10th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:Aodh RuadhGAANoticesSportlast_img read more

Blackburn v Fulham line-ups: Two Whites midfielders missing, Rovers make four changes

first_imgFulham make two changes to their side for the trip to Blackburn Rovers, with Sakari Mattila and Luke Garbutt starting in a five-man midfield.Head coach Slavisa Jokanovic keeps faith with the 3-5-2 formation used in the 3-1 win over QPR on Saturday, with Mattila replacing Scott Parker and Garbutt coming in at left-wing for the injured Lasse Vigen Christensen.There is no Rohan Ince on the bench, but Tim Ream and January signing Zakaria Labyad are both named as substitutes.Former Blackburn midfielder Tom Cairney starts against his old club.Rovers make four changes with captain Grant Hanley restored to the line-up after a shoulder injury, replacing Elliott Ward.Elliott Bennett comes in for Craig Conway and boss Paul Lambert changes his strike partnership, with Chris Brown and the fit-again Danny Graham ousting Tony Watt and Simeon Jackson.Blackburn Rovers: Steele; Marshall, Duffy, Hanley, Spurr; Lenihan, Evans, Gomez, Bennett; Brown, Graham. Subs: Raya, Henley, Watt, Ward, Grimes, Conway, Jackson.Fulham: Lonergan; Madl, Burn, Amorebieta; Fredericks, Matilla, O’Hara, Cairney, Garbutt; Dembele, McCormack. Subs: Lewis, Richards, Ream, Hyndman, Kacaniklic, Labyad, Smith.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

Our passengers who make your flight hell survey results

first_imgWho is your passenger from hell?The seat recliner, the passenger who lets their children run riot, the chatterbox or the lurking smelly traveler, who you wish would travel somewhere else?The smelly passenger, who we’ve dubbed ‘Smellus Maximus’ has soared up to be the number two hate of air travelers. This “hell” passenger comes in just behind those who recline their seat, affectionately known by us as ‘Reclinus Maximus’.According to the annual “Passengers Who Make Your Flight Hell” survey of air travelers, almost 35.4 per cent of the more than 1550 respondents put the passenger who reclines their seat as their number one nightmare.However, with 25.5 per cent naming Smellus Maximus as the most despised, it raises the question, has hygiene slipped?According to editor, Geoffrey Thomas, while it was expected that Reclinus Maximus would rate highly, the level of frustration for the smelly passenger reflects a decline in hygiene standards.“There has been a significant shift in passengers’ gripes about their fellow travelers, who are either not conscious of their odour or don’t care,” said Mr Thomas.“With online or cell phone check-in now widespread, offending passengers are slipping through the traditional checks and only coming into contact with airline agents at the boarding gate. The agents, under pressure to get the flight away, let offenders slip through.”Mr Thomas continues, “Dress standards have declined on planes and so has appearance and hygiene. We have noticed an increase in people complaining about these issues.”Commenting on the survey Australian Business Traveller’s founder David Flynn “it doesn’t surprise me that “passenger pong” is a hate of travellers.”“A lot of people tell me eye-rolling nose-holding tales of whiffy seatmates,” said Mr Flynn.“After all, you’ve got several hundred people crammed together in this tin can – and it’s especially tight quarters in economy – with plenty of recirculated air.”Mr Flynn adds that you’ve got passengers who’ve been rushing to the airport or dashing between flights to make a connection, and people who take their shoes and socks off during the flight.“Stir in some hot humid sticky summer weather, or pretty much any day in an equatorial city like Singapore, and it’s a perfect storm of bad smells.”This year, two passengers made global headlines because of their odour and were kicked off planes in Canada. In the past month, three US domestic flights have been diverted over arguments related to knee defenders, which prevent seats reclining.Authorities in the US have not banned knee defenders but have instead left it up to the airlines to regulate. However in Australia, both Qantas and Virgin Australia have banned these devices.In the survey, the parent who let their children run riot ‘Parentus Slapdashi’ came in third with 20.1 per cent while fourth went to ‘Armrest Grabbis’ at 13.5 per cent and the non-stop talker ‘Chatterbox Majorus’ came in fifth with just 5.54 per cent.(e) [email protected] Geoffrey on twitterlast_img read more

REITs to boost SA property investment

first_img1 August 2012 The new Real Estate Investment Trust (REIT) structure, scheduled to become available to the South African property sector in early 2013, will both benefit local property structures and increase foreign investment opportunities, according to consultancy Grant Thornton. The adoption of the REIT structure, which is recognised in most key property markets internationally, will revive South Africa’s current systems, which are dated and often tedious, through the introduction of a scheme that has been tried and tested internationally, Grant Thornton said last week. At the same time, the REITs will “bring about much-needed tax and regulatory changes that local property structures could certainly benefit from in the long term,” the company said in a statement.Treasury, SA Revenue Service lauded The National Treasury’s proposal to introduce this listed property investment regime, aimed at aligning the South African listed property sector with its international counterparts, will also create a more attractive investment structure, significantly enhancing international interest. AJ Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen, head of tax at Grant Thornton Johannesburg, said the main reason for the overhaul “is because existing local structures, property loan stocks (PLS) and property unit trusts (PUT) are unevenly regulated and subject to different tax treatments, prompting the need for a shared set of regulations. The Tax Amendment Bill proposing REITs, which was tabled in July, will unify the approach to local property investment schemes and provide greater certainty for international investors. “The proposed tax framework reflects that global best practice for REITs has been carefully considered, and National Treasury and Sars [the South African Revenue Service] should be commended for taking international considerations into account,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said.International lessons learnt “Some of these lessons were clearly learnt from the UK REIT regime, which at first levied a conversion charge of 2% of the value of the property portfolio of REITs wanting to convert and limited the REITs’ listing to the main exchange.” In an effort to be more competitive with other REIT markets like Australia and the US, the UK dropped the conversion charge, has expanded listings to the AIM exchange, and has temporarily relaxed the gearing limits. According to Grant Thornton, South Africa’s draft proposals do not contain any of these onerous provisions. Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said the new framework would modernise the rules governing South Africa’s property investment regime and attract foreign investment. PUT and PLS structures that comply with the proposed REIT requirements will benefit from certain tax dispensations, specifically, an exemption from capital gains tax (CGT). “These tax features are certainly strong benefits of the proposed structure,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said.Listing requirements He also pointed out that a company wishing to register as a REIT had to be listed, or intend to list, on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) and comply with all listing regulations. At present, there are no listing requirements for PUTs, although they are regulated closely by the Financial Services Board (FSB). “The introduction of REITs will expand the investment options available to those PUT structures that elect to register.” Despite the increased flexibility, tradability and tax relief offered by REITs, Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said that PUTs and other property investment entities would have to consider the increased administrative and regulatory burden of listing before making a decision.Additional requirements REIT-registered companies will have to satisfy four additional requirements, according to Grant Thornton. “The levels for each requirement are yet to be finalised, but as it currently stands, companies must have a minimum gross holding of direct or indirect property assets of R300-million.” In addition, a REIT “must distribute at least 70% of its profits annually, and its gearing is limited to 60% of net asset value.” A PLS, South Africa’s more dominant vehicle for property structures, is a share-linked debenture structure that is indivisibly tradable on the JSE and taxed at a normal rate of 28% with an effective CGT rate of 18.6%. Under the PLS structure, most profit is paid out to investors as interest, which is tax-deductible in the PLS and taxable income in the hands of the investor, meaning that the PLS vehicle attracts low levels of income tax. “Yet in substance, the revenue authorities have always contended that the distribution is more akin to profit than interest, and this contradicts general tax principles,” Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said. The new framework will improve the tax treatment for PLSs, seen to be problematic and a major factor behind the proposal to introduce REITs in South Africa. Grant Thornton advises companies looking to register as REITs in South Africa to ensure that they adhere to all of the requirements to avoid profits being taxed. “Similarly, each merger or acquisition must be closely examined to ensure that the target does not compromise the company’s REIT status.” SAinfo reporterlast_img read more