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Since Hurricane Sandy pounded the Northeast on Oct. 29, 2012, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has worked diligently, together with its federal, state, local and industry partners, to complete construction on more than 106 authorized and funded coastal storm damage risk reduction projects. Extending from Maine to Virginia, the efforts of the Army Corps’ North Atlantic Division (NAD) have been laser focused on reducing coastline community vulnerability through repairing, restoring and constructing regional storm risk management projects authorized and funded by Public Law 113-2, the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2013.In addition to repairing and restoring all 25 of the Corps’ previously constructed beach nourishment projects under the Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies program, the Corps has finished repair work on 90 percent (77 of 86 projects) of navigation channels and structures impacted by Sandy under NAD’s Operations and Maintenance (O&M) program.Of the remaining nine projects, four are expected to be completed this year, with the last five wrapping up the O&M program by next summer.“I am immensely proud of the outstanding effort of our entire team,” Brig. Gen. William Graham, NAD commander, said. “For decades, the Army Corps of Engineers has been known as one of the largest and most respected engineering and construction organizations in the world. That reputation is based on the selfless dedication and professionalism of its workforce. Many years ago, the Corps had a motto, ‘The Corps Cares.’ Its efforts surrounding the recovery from Super Storm Sandy certainly prove that!”To restore engineered dunes and berms to their authorized specifications, the Corps has placed more than 50.1 million cubic yards of sand, enough to fill MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey, more than 25 times, on coastlines from New York to Virginia since federal funds were appropriated 45 months ago.Feasibility cost-sharing agreements have been executed for all 17 federally-funded coastal storm risk management studies – one of which transitioned last year from a study to a construction project. Nine of 10 additional studies are projected to transition to construction projects by next summer.At the request of the non-Federal sponsor or, per Corps policy, the remaining six have transitioned, or will transition, out of the Sandy Recovery Program.The Corps has completed four “authorized but unconstructed” (ABU) projects.ABU projects constitute the bulk of the recovery program and include beach nourishment projects which had been designed and congressionally authorized prior to Sandy but had not been built or were only partially built when the hurricane struck.Seven more ABU projects are now in construction, and the remaining eight will be ready to build pending coordination with state and local officials.Since the third anniversary of Hurricane Sandy (October 29, 2015), the Corps has completed 19 projects including 16 O&M and 3 ABU projects.
LPC graduates face a pretty tough time getting training contracts at the moment. Not only is there an ever-increasing number of students graduating from the course – with training providers only too happy to offer more places – but the number of firms prepared to offer the training contract is dwindling.Things may have got worse as a result of the current economic woes, but aspiring lawyers have been struggling to break into the profession for some time. I recall writing a feature back in 2005 about how paralegals were being expected to perform fee-earning work for very low pay on the basis that they would ‘one day’ be offered a training contract, which all too often never materialised. Because they have not yet clasped their palms around that training contract holy grail, paralegals do not enjoy the protection of its guaranteed minimum salary. More than that, the minimum salary actually damages their chances of ever winning a training contract, because it makes it too expensive for firms to offer. Many firms are not being deliberately exploitative when they take on LPC students as paralegals. They would like to offer them a route to qualification, but they worry, often justifiably, that they can’t afford it. If they could take on their best paralegal staff as trainees, without having to up their salary (although of course the minimum salary level of £16,650 outside London or £18,590 in the capital, for someone who has already invested so much time and cash in their degree and LPC course, is not exactly big bucks) then I think that many firms would gladly offer this opportunity to their staff. True, a training contract will still involve a bigger regulatory burden than just employing someone as a paralegal, but surely the main barrier for firms is the financial obligation to pay a set wage. Groups such as the Junior Lawyers Division are against scrapping the minimum salary level. They are concerned that without it, trainees will be paid a pittance, and as well as being unfair, that could be detrimental to diversity in the profession, with only the better off able to afford to qualify. That is a fair point. There’s little doubt that if the Solicitors Regulation Authority does choose to stop laying down a minimum salary, many trainees will indeed find themselves facing a pay cut, and that could be seen as exploitation. But the fact is that many LPC graduates out there working as paralegals are already being exploited, and the only salary protection they have is the government’s minimum wage. Some LPC graduates are so desperate to secure a training contract that they are even prepared to conduct ‘work experience’ for free. After all, what is the justification for the SRA to interfere with firms’ freedom to decide what they should pay their staff? This doesn’t happen in most other walks of life. The only reason I can see is that the regulator is attempting to protect trainees, and the financial investment they have made in their education and training so far. But in doing so, it is making matters worse for the many talented individuals who have still to get their first foothold into the profession. The time has come to let the market, not the regulator, decide what trainees should be paid – and in doing so, open the door to many more aspiring lawyers.
The justice secretary copped some stick for – allegedly – nodding off during chancellor George Osborne’s budget speech last week. But while Ed Miliband accused the lord chancellor of catching 40 winks, and Ladbrokes revealed it had paid out a four-figure sum to a customer who had presciently bet that Clarke would doze off, the minister himself was not admitting to anything. Clarke’s spokesman reportedly told press, ‘of course he didn’t fall asleep’, while the man himself provided further enlightenment as to precise events in the Guardian. Clarke told the broadsheet: ‘It wasn’t anything to do with George’s speech. It was early on. I sat there, snuggled in alongside my colleagues, and I was conscious of nodding for a moment. ‘I wasn’t conscious of going to sleep, actually. I don’t want to cause a dispute with Ladbrokes, but my head was dropping and – [I was] wide awake by the end of the speech. ‘I assure you it wasn’t lack of interest… But I had had a bad night the night before.’ Could the minister’s sleep problems indicate a pang of conscience over legal aid cuts? Sadly not. ‘I’m having gout in my wrist and the blasted thing kept me awake the night before. So I was generally short of sleep,’ he said.
FILE – Luka Doncic #77 of the Dallas Mavericks dribbles the ball against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on January 19, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. Andy Lyons/Getty Images/AFPNEW YORK — With Dallas’ Luka Doncic and Atlanta’s Trae Young leading the way, the top five NBA draft picks from 2018 have been selected as the top five NBA rookies this season.Doncic and Young were unanimous first-team selections for the NBA All-Rookie team, which was announced Tuesday. Phoenix’s Deandre Ayton, Memphis’ Jaren Jackson and Sacramento’s Marvin Bagley III are also on the first team, which was chosen by 100 voters who cover the league.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Doncic and Young join other unanimous first-team all-rookie picks over the last decade: Ben Simmons and Donovan Mitchell (2018), Malcolm Brogdon and Dario Saric (2017), Karl-Anthony Towns and Kristaps Porzingis (2016), Andrew Wiggins (2015), Michael Carter-Williams (2014), Damian Lillard (2013), Kyrie Irving (2012), Blake Griffin (2011) and Tyreke Evans, Brandon Jennings and Stephen Curry (2010).Others receiving votes: Phoenix’s Mikal Bridges, New York’s Kevin Knox and Allonzo Trier, Minnesota’s Josh Okogie, Dallas’ Jalen Brunson, Brooklyn’s Rodions Kurucs, Chicago’s Wendell Carter Jr., Charlotte’s Mile Bridges, Detroit’s Bruce Brown, Sacramento’s Harry Giles III, Orlando’s Mo Bamba and Indiana’s Aaron Holiday.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LeBron James stretches lead in NBA All-Star Game fan voting The Witcher series prompts over 500,000 reprints of Andrzej Sapkowski’s books Eduard Folayang gets new opponent for ONE Manila card Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption Ayton, Bagley, Doncic, Jackson and Young were the first five picks in the last year’s draft.This marks the first time since the 1984 draft that the first five picks ended up as first-team all-rookie — the selections that year being Hakeem Olajuwon, Sam Bowie, Michael Jordan, Sam Perkins, Charles Barkley. That was the entirety of the rookie team that season; the NBA didn’t start doing first- and second-team selections until 1988-89.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsThe Hawks had two all-rookie selections this season, with Kevin Huerter on the second team to join Young. Also on the second team were a pair of Los Angeles Clippers, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and Landry Shamet, along with Cleveland’s Collin Sexton and New York’s Mitchell Robinson.Rookie of the year will be announced at the NBA Awards show in Los Angeles on June 24. Doncic, Young and Ayton are the finalists. Pagadian on tighter security for 100,000 expected at Sto. Niño feast Gilas women’s team scores whopping win to kick off Fiba 3×3 Asia Cup bid Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college MOST READ NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption PLAY LIST 02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award03:05Malakanyang bilib sa Phivolcs | Chona Yu Solon urges Solgen to reconsider quo warranto petition vs ABS-CBN Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard