first_imgWhatsApp Twitter Linkedin Previous articleLISTEN: Camogie manager “looking forward to having a crack off Galway on Sunday”Next articlePeople’s Museum all set for summer opening date Alan Jacqueshttp://www.limerickpost.ie Séighin Ó’Cheallaigh, and Malachy McCreesh, Sinn Féin. Photo: Cian ReinhardtTHE waiting time for driving tests in Limerick is “completely unacceptable”.That’s the view of Sinn Féin councillor Séighin Ó Ceallaigh, who was responding to figures obtained by his party this week which show the target is not being met in up to half of the State’s test centres.Sign up for the weekly Limerick Post newsletter Sign Up The average waiting time in Limerick is 12 weeks.“This does not include the figure of 1,084 who are awaiting a scheduled test date for a test,” the City East representative said.“The RSA (Road Safety Authority) say they aim to have a national average waiting time for a driving test of no longer than 10 weeks. The longest number of weeks people in Limerick waiting for a driving test is 20 weeks, nearly half a year to do a driving test.”According to Ó Ceallaigh, the main factor causing this is the shortage of testers to deal with the demand.“A significant number of testers have retired in recent years. This is foreseeable, and I do not accept that new testers could not have been recruited to ensure that these retirements did not affect the service.“The recruitment process has been slow and is simply not good enough. The Minister needs to support the RSA in recruiting significant numbers of new testers to cope with demand.“This situation has been ongoing for a long time and it is completely unacceptable that this hasn’t been resolved to date.“People in County Limerick, and even in parts of the city are completely reliant on driving to get to work or education. Public transport is simply not an option for many people with either a shortage of services, or no service at all within walking distance.“Many commuters would have to take two buses and walk to their place of employment or education, and often the times don’t suit their need. It very important that these waiting times be resolved, in order to facilitate those who are ready to take their test and are reliant on driving to go about their daily business,” he concluded. Emailcenter_img NewsPoliticsWaiting times for driving tests in Limerick ‘completely unacceptable’By Alan Jacques – March 8, 2019 992 Print Facebook Advertisementlast_img read more

first_img 11SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Debbie Matz Debbie Matz was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve as the eighth board chair of the National Credit Union Administration (NCUA). After confirmation by the U.S. Senate on … Web: www.ncua.gov Details Announcing my retirement as NCUA Chairman was not a decision I took lightly. It was the culmination of a great deal of thought and soul-searching. But after serving 11 years at NCUA, including a full year beyond the expiration of my second term, it is time for the next chapter in my life.For every day of those 11 years, it has truly been an honor to protect the safety and soundness of America’s credit unions and safeguard the deposits of 103 million members.It’s amazing to reflect on everything that credit unions and NCUA accomplished to ensure stability and promote growth. Through the hard work of credit union officials and NCUA staff, the credit union system rebounded mightily from the depths of the Great Recession. Virtually every metric indicates the credit union system today is strong, resilient, and poised for even greater success in the future.Putting the Past Behind UsHowever, when I was sworn in as Chairman in 2009, the credit union system was on the brink of collapse. Survival of the system was threatened by corporate credit unions holding $50 billion in toxic assets and consumer credit unions facing billions of dollars in potential losses. Such catastrophic losses would have wiped out the National Credit Union Share Insurance Fund, which at the time had only $8 billion in assets.At NCUA we worked around the clock to stabilize the system, save as many credit unions as we could, minimize total losses, and rebuild the Insurance Fund. We focused on shoring up gaps in supervision and regulations that threatened safety and soundness. NCUA’s new safeguards stopped the hemorrhaging and prevented the system from failing.At the same time, we resolved the most severe liquidity shortfall in credit union history. Using an innovative approach never before implemented by a federal regulatory agency, NCUA successfully repackaged the seized corporate assets to raise more than $28 billion through marketplace sales of government-backed securities.Earning RecoveriesI am extraordinarily proud that NCUA became the first federal financial institutions regulator to recover losses from Wall Street firms that contributed to the Great Recession. To date, we’ve recovered over $3 billion in settlements with firms that sold faulty mortgage-backed securities to corporate credit unions.Net proceeds from these recoveries reduced the need for assessments paid by consumer credit unions, and increased the likelihood of a rebate after the Corporate Stabilization Fund expires in 2021. With 11 lawsuits still pending, I’m confident NCUA will collect even more recoveries on behalf of credit unions.Providing Regulatory ReliefAfter stabilizing the system and initiating recoveries, we were able to shift our focus to regulatory relief. My Regulatory Modernization Initiative yielded 21 areas of innovative regulatory relief, consistent with President Obama’s Executive Order 13579.These relief measures removed unnecessary burdens and empowered credit union boards and management to make strategic business decisions.Listening to Credit Union OfficialsIn fact, many of these initiatives came from credit union officials. One of the best parts of my job has been traveling the country to visit with credit union staff and volunteers, to hear suggestions and address concerns wherever possible.As part of my outreach, I held 19 in-person Listening Sessions, hosted 13 industry-wide webinars, and participated in meetings with tens of thousands of credit union officials representing every state. Credit unions’ commitment to member service is the gold standard for our nation.Serving AmericansServing the American people is a tremendous honor. So I am deeply grateful to President Obama for providing me with the opportunity to serve our nation. As I recently told the President, this has been the most challenging and gratifying position I have ever held.I chose a career in public service to make a difference in people’s lives. My two terms at NCUA have permitted me to do that in many ways. It has been a privilege working with the best staff in the federal government and the most dedicated professionals and volunteers in the financial services sector.Working together, we accomplished every goal I had set as Chairman—from helping the credit union system recover after the Great Recession, to modernizing the regulatory framework, to providing meaningful regulatory relief without compromising safety and soundness.I am more convinced than ever that the state of America’s credit union system is strong. I am leaving NCUA confident that the credit union system is firmly positioned for continued growth, innovation, and success for the foreseeable future.last_img read more

first_imgMajor League Baseball’s coronavirus-delayed season got underway on Thursday with players lining up to take a knee in a gesture of solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement.Four months after the COVID-19 pandemic shelved the start of the 2020 campaign, baseball returned with the Washington Nationals hosting the New York Yankees before the Los Angeles Dodgers entertained the San Francisco Giants.Both games took place in eerily empty ballparks, a striking contrast to the celebratory atmosphere that normally accompanies the opening day festivities of the sport regarded as America’s pastime. Several members of the Giants’ playing and coaching staff also knelt during the anthem.’Unifying moment’ “It was a really important, unifying moment for the players and staff on both sides,” said Giants manager Gabe Kapler, who was among those who knelt. “It was good to be around players who are so committed to changing the current state of systemic racism in our country.”The United States has been convulsed by nationwide protests against racism and police brutality after the May 25 death of unarmed African-American man George Floyd in Minneapolis at the hands of police officers.Taking a knee has become a widely recognized symbol of support for Black Lives Matter, adopted by protesters and professional athletes around the world in the weeks since the protests erupted.Kneeling was first used as a gesture of protest by former NFL player Colin Kaepernick in 2016, who was vilified by President Donald Trump for his protests against racial injustice. Thursday’s season-opening games marked a long-awaited return to baseball after months of uncertainty during the coronavirus shutdown that at times threatened to scupper the entire season.After bitter wrangling between team owners and players, an abbreviated 60-game season was mandated by MLB commissioner Rob Manfred. Games are taking place without fans, while players are subject to a range of strict health and safety protocols designed to prevent outbreaks of COVID-19.Players will be tested for the disease every 48 hours, while masks will be mandatory for all players not on the field of play.As well as strict social distancing, two staples of baseball — chewing tobacco and sunflower seeds — are also effectively banned. Under baseball’s new safety code, any spitting is forbidden.Thursday’s game in Washington, meanwhile, was marked by an appearance from US infectious disease specialist Anthony Fauci, a devoted fan of the World Series-winning Nationals, who tossed the ceremonial first pitch to get the season underway. Fauci’s pitch went way wide of the catcher. COVID-19, meanwhile, struck a blow to the Nationals earlier Thursday after it emerged star outfielder Juan Soto had tested positive for the disease.Nationals general manager Mike Rizzo said Soto faces an indefinite spell on the sidelines as he recovers.Soto’s absence was felt on the field by Washington, who slumped to a 4-1 defeat in a game that was called off after torrential rain halted play after the 5th inning with the Yankees leading.In Los Angeles, meanwhile, the Dodgers romped to an 8-1 defeat of San Francisco.Topics : At both Nationals Park in Washington and Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, players took part in a pre-game tribute to Black Lives Matter, dropping to one knee while lifting a giant black banner in unison.As the players knelt, a message addressing social injustice recorded by actor Morgan Freeman played on stadium screens.In Washington, all players on the field then got to their feet to stand for the US national anthem.Members of the @SFGiants kneel during the National Anthem. #BlackLivesMatter pic.twitter.com/QbvAvCZiEs— MLB (@MLB) July 21, 2020But in Los Angeles, the Dodgers’ newly signed African-American star Mookie Betts remained on one knee, with teammates Cody Bellinger and Max Muncy each resting a supportive hand on his shoulder. last_img read more

first_imgMaryland Senators Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin yesterday applauded the USACE FY2019 Work Plan, which directs the investment of more than $10 million in additional federal funding for critical navigation and ecosystem restoration projects in Maryland. The annual Army Corps Work Plan defines where project money can be spent across the country, above and beyond the itemized funding in the FY2019 appropriations bills.“Every year the Army Corps clears tons of eroded sediment from the federal navigation channels that lead into and out of the Port of Baltimore. Keeping this vital port open and the channels dredged is essential not just for Maryland, but for the nation. The Corps then uses some of the dredged material to restore natural features like Poplar, James and Barren islands, restoring critical wildlife habitat and better protecting coastal communities,” according to senators’ announcement.Projects in Maryland receiving additional funding from the Army Corps FY2019 Work Plan include:Baltimore Harbor and Channels will receive almost $5 million additional for maintenance dredging, bringing the 2019 total to $28.595 million;The James and Barren Islands (Mid-Bay) restoration project will receive an additional $4.259 million for pre-construction engineering and design efforts. No funding for this project had been included in the FY 2019 budget;The Fishing Creek dredging project, originally allocated only $10,000 in the FY2019 budget, will receive $1.36 million under the Work Plan;The Ocean City Harbor Inlet project will receive an additional $250,000 for dredging, essential to providing access to commercial and recreational fishing vessels alike, bringing the total funding to $255,000;The Chesapeake Bay Comprehensive Plan will receive $133,000 in funding from the Work Plan. These funds will complete the watershed study;The Jennings Randolph Lake project was listed in the FY19 budget at $6.285 million, but the FY19 Work Plan provided $6.324 million.last_img read more

first_imgNewly-crowned PFA Player of the Year Gareth Bale dismissed talk of a summer transfer to Real Madrid as “speculation”. “It’s a massive honour,” the Welshman said. “To be voted by your peers is one of the biggest things in the game. It’s great to win it and I am delighted.” Ronaldo scooped both the young player and the main award in 2007, some 30 years after Andy Gray become the first professional to do so. Bale won the senior award two seasons ago when he shot to fame with a series of scintillating displays domestically and in the Champions League. Now he wants to take Spurs back in to Europe’s biggest club competition, but his manager Andre Villas-Boas claims he may lose the player if they do not qualify for the Champions League. Bale insists he is not paying any attention to those who claim he is bound for the Spanish capital, though. He said: “I just take no notice, it’s all speculation, I can’t do anything about it. “I just concentrate on my football and play as well as I can and do my best for the team.” Tottenham forward Bale picked up his second Professional Footballers’ Association (PFA) Player of the Year Award on Sunday. The 23-year-old, who has scored 29 goals for club and country this term, also won the Young Player of the Year award, making him the first player since Cristiano Ronaldo to do the double at the prestigious awards night at the Grosvenor Hotel in central London. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more