Vermont treasurer cautions US debt ceiling impasse could impact state’s credit rating

first_imgWhile federal negotiations continue on raising the U.S. debt ceiling, Vermont’s State Treasurer is cautioning that the seeming impasse could negatively impact Vermont’s hard-earned Triple-A bond credit rating.                 ‘Yesterday, we learned from Moody’s Investor Services that even the highest-rated states, including Vermont, would have their ratings reviewed next week in light of the continued U.S. debt ceiling debate,’ said State Treasurer Beth Pearce. ‘However, I’m confident Vermont’s track record of fiscal responsibility will serve us well in any rating review. Vermont has the highest credit rating in New England, one of the highest ratings in the country, a strong cash position and healthy reserves.’                 Pearce said such disappointing news concerns her because the State’s high bond rating enables Vermont to borrow funds for critical infrastructure needs at very low rates and save taxpayers millions of dollars in interest payments. On July 13, Moody’s placed the U.S. government’s debt ratings on review for possible downgrade. Moody’s informed the Treasurer’s Office that it also was concerned that states would be negatively impacted by disruptions caused by the failure to raise the U.S. debt ceiling.                 State and federal governments sell bonds to investors to borrow money to make investments in areas such as public infrastructure. In Vermont, money raised by a bond sale funds a wide range of capital purposes, including State building construction and maintenance, health and public safety, and pollution control projects. The higher such bonds are rated, the more creditworthy a rating agency evaluates the bond issuer to be. Vermont bonds are rated Triple-A by Moody’s and Fitch Ratings and Double-A+ by the Standard & Poor’s Ratings Service.                 ‘The debate in Washington is a painful reminder that even though Vermont is fiscally sound and we are responsibly managing our finances through this economic downturn, we also are affected by national public policy decisions. It would be regrettable if all of the hard work and sacrifice that State government, employees and taxpayers have made to earn Vermont’s excellent ratings is put at risk due to events beyond our control,’ said Pearce.                 Vermont’s next general obligation bond sale is not scheduled until mid-October and Pearce said the State has sufficient cash balances and receipts to delay that sale even further if necessary.                 ‘We are fortunate that we can get through any short- or even medium-term bond market disruption,’ explained Pearce. ‘Many states are not in such an advantageous position. If a resolution to the debt ceiling issue is not forthcoming, debt markets will be volatile. States and municipalities with lower credit ratings may have difficulty accessing the market at affordable interest rates, if at all. I remain hopeful, however, that a resolution will take place before the deadline.’                 The Treasurer’s Office has worked closely with State officials to review rating agency concerns and to develop contingency plans. Vermont has sufficient liquid cash reserves to manage delays in receipt of federal funds, and all of its existing debt is fixed rate and long term, which protects it from both rising interest rates and ‘rollover’ risk.last_img read more

Long Beach Police to Get Shotspotter Technology

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York Long Beach city police officers will soon be responding more quickly to shootings thanks to ShotSpotter, a sophisticated gunshot detection system being deployed amid rising concerns about shootings on the barrier island.Nassau County Legis. Denise Ford (R-Long Beach) secured $500,000 to fund the technology, which uses acoustic sensors and software to pinpoint the location of gunfire within milliseconds of the shot going off. Within 30-60 seconds of shootings, police officers are directly notified of gunshots—bypassing 911 and dispatchers—enabling them to dramatically decrease response times to these incidents.“This technology will enable [police officers] to capture the gunmen more quickly, and even more importantly, the victim will receive medical attention and care much, much sooner,” Ford said during a news conference Tuesday at the Evangel Revival Community Church. “For too long, the good residents of these neighborhoods have lived in fear, and it is time that we take action to restore a sense of security.”Nassau County police have credited Shotspotter with reducing gunfire by 80 percent in Roosevelt and Uniondale, where the system debuted in 2010. Suffolk County deployed Shotspotter in Huntington Station, Brentwood, North Amityville, Wyandanch and North the following year. And Hempstead village police began using it after that. ShotSpotter is similarly used by U.S. troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, who have used it to track snipers.“This is a vital tool to really help us eliminate this issue from our neighborhood to make it safe,” Acting Nassau County Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter said.Recent shootings in Long Beach include a 4-year-old boy being grazed by a bullet last month, a man hit by gunfire in April and a 28-year-old man who was killed last fall. Arrests were made in all three cases.The Shotspotter funding came from the county legislature’s discretionary Community Revitalization Projects program. The half-million dollar budget is enough to fund the Shotspotter program for five years.Aside from helping catch shooters and save victims, ShotSpotter also aids citizens in communities where there is a fear of retaliation for calling 911. The technology provides all of the data necessary about the gunshots in order to prosecute suspects without eyewitness testimony, although officials continue to urge the public to still call 911.In response to privacy concerns, ShotSpotter officials noted that the sensors’ microphones are not constantly recording or listening, except for the milliseconds before and after gunshots are fired. The devices do not record video and are placed high on top of buildings in order to cover more area, typically 50-100 feet above street level.Officials said they hope that the mere presence of ShotSpotter will help deter shootings in the community.“We’re not gonna take it anymore,” said New York State Assemb. Todd Kaminsky (D-Long Beach). “We have the city, we have the county, we have the state, we have different parts of the community—and we’re all standing here saying that whatever resources are necessary, whatever investigations are necessary…to protect our communities, we are going to take those necessary steps.”Long Beach city police officials, who did not attend the press conference, did not return a call for comment.“The number of shootings have been steady in Long Beach while they have been increasing all around us,” Long Beach Police Commissioner Michael Tangney told the Long Beach Herald earlier this month, although no shooting statistics for the city were provided in that story.last_img read more

Celebrate the Fourth of July in Sunrise!

first_imgThe City of Sunrise is hosting a full day of free celebrations on Wednesday, July 4. Looking for a traditional start to your Independence Day? Be in position at 9:00 a.m., when our “Animation Comes to Life” Parade winds its way west along Sunset Strip from NW 12th Street to City Park (6700 Sunset Strip, Sunrise 33313). You’ll see colorful floats, costumed characters, marching musicians, and more! From the end of the parade until noon, enjoy a Family Fun Day complete with refreshments and activities for kids. The excitement continues with a Concert and Fireworks outdoors at the BB&T Center (One Panther Parkway, Sunrise 33323). The gates open at 4:30, and parking and admission are free.  This year’s live entertainment includes three amazing bands and a fantastic fireworks display: 5:00 p.m. – Skotch Bonnett Band (reggae and R&B) 6:15 p.m. – Mr. Nice Guy (classic rock) 7:45 p.m. – Grand Funk Railroad (classic rock from The American Band) 9:15 p.m. – Fireworks The event also features a children’s fun zone, and a wide selection of food and beverage vendors. For attendees’ safety, the following items cannot be brought into the event area at the BB&T Center: backpacks, bags larger than 12” x 12”, coolers, glass bottles, alcohol, weapons, drones, fireworks, pets, and bicycles. (Bring a lock to secure your bike in the lot.) All bags will be searched. The City of Sunrise Concert and Fireworks celebration is presented by Wheelabrator Technologies and sponsored by the BB&T Center, the Florida Panthers, Ed Morse Sawgrass Automall, Metropica, Memorial Healthcare System, the Sun-Sentinel Media Group, The Beach 102.7 FM, The Ticket 790 AM, and Bahama Breeze. For more information, visit, or call the City of Sunrise Leisure Services Department: (954) 747-4600.last_img read more

Wimbledon Women’s Singles Final, Serena Williams vs Angelique Kerber: As it happened

first_imgHello and Welcome to our LIVE COVERAGE of the women’s singles final of the Wimbledon 2016.@serenawilliams v @AngeliqueKerber @Wimbledon Serena = champion! Incredible effort. You’re a class act. #22 Hugh Jackman (@RealHughJackman) July 9, 2016Congratulations to the best ever! Serena Williams ! Amazing achievement ?????? Kim Clijsters (@Clijsterskim) July 9, 2016Serena: “It was difficult not to think about (the record). Knowing how hard I worked, it makes the victory sweeter” Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Feeling 22.#Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Kerber: “Congrats to Serena. You really deserved this. It is always an honour for me to play you in the final” Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Catch 22…Two legends, nothing to separate them. #Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016The legend grows.Serena is warmly congratulated at the net by Kerber after winning her 22nd Grand Slam title. Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Champion. Again.Serena Williams joins Steffi Graf on 22 Grand Slam titles after clinching a 7th #Wimbledon crown Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201620.09 IST: That’s it! Serena Williams beats Angelique Kerber 7-5, 6-3 to win her seventh Wimbledon title, equals Steffi Graf’s record of 22 Grand Slam crowns 20.04 IST: Serena Williams breaks Kerber 5-3 in the second set. Serving for the championship. PM: Huge congratulations to @GordonReid91 & @alfiehewett6 on their victory in the Men’s Wheelchair Doubles at #Wimbledon today #BackTheBrits UK Prime Minister (@Number10gov) July 9, 201619.55 IST: Former tennis star Billie Jean King is also present in the stands. Kerber makes it 3-3. advertisement19.46 IST: Pop star Beyonce and Jay Z are in the stands to watch Serena vs Kerber clash. It’s 2-2 in the second set. How I’m feeling about this women’s final so far. #Wimbledon Laura Robson (@laurarobson5) July 9, 201619.39 IST: Kerber holds on. It’s 1-1 in the second set. 19.37 IST: Serena Williams opens second set with a 1-0 lead. The numbers tell the story of that first set…#Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201619.32 IST: Serena Williams finally breaks Angelique Kerber to take the first 7-5 19.28 IST: After three wonderful serves, Serena gets herself out of trouble to lead 6-5 in the first set. A wonderful embrace at the net as Potapova beats Yastremska to become the 2016 girls’ singles champion #Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201619.24 IST: Kerber makes it 5-5 in the first set. Centre Court is being treated to some super tennis. Serena holds again – she has yet to face a BP – to go 5-4 up Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201619.21 IST: Serena holds, leads 5-4 in the first set. 5 aces.16 winners.8 UFEs.Serena posting some excellent numbers but Kerber’s holding her own. On serve at 4-3. Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201619.16 IST: No break of serves yet. It’s 4-4 in the first set. 19.12 IST: Serena Williams makes it 4-3 in the first set. It’s been a high quality tennis so far 19.07 IST: Bit of fortune helps Kerber make it 3-3 in the first set. 19.05 IST: Serena Williams holding her serves. She leads 3-2 in the first set. 19.01 IST: Angelique Kerber showing signs of early nerves. 2-2 in the first set. 18.57 IST: Serena Williams races to 2-1 lead vs Angelique Kerber in the first set. Serena has lost just two points in her first two serves.18.54 IST: Angelique Kerber manages to hold on, it’s 1-1 in the first set. 18.47 IST: Serena Williams holds on to her serve, leads 1-0 in the first set. 18.37 IST: The two players warm-up before the big match. 18.33 IST: Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber make their way to the Centre Court, which is absolutely packed. ???? good luck @AngeliqueKerber for the final! #doitagain #Wimbledon Nico Rosberg (@nico_rosberg) July 9, 201618.15 IST: Gordon Reid and Alfie Hewitt become Men’s Wheelchair Doubles champions. In pursuit of history… #WimbledonWeekend Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 201618.00 IST: We are just 30 minutes away from the start of the final. Serena hasn’t won any majors since Wimbledon last year.The atmosphere is building inside Centre Court… #Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Angelique Kerber goes through some final preparations ahead of her first #Wimbledon final… Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016The final preparations…@serenawilliams warms up for Grand Slam singles final No.28.#Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016″She hates to lose”From one champion to another: @BillieJeanKing on Serena#Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Three hours to go…#Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016Rise and shine! It’s Ladies’ Final day ??? #Wimbledon Wimbledon (@Wimbledon) July 9, 2016PREVIEWWhen Serena Williams and Angelique Kerber walk onto Wimbledon’s Centre Court for the women’s final today, the legacy of Steffi Graf will loom large.The showdown will see world number one Serena try to equal Graf’s professional era record of 22 grand slam singles titles, while Kerber will seek to become the first German woman to lift the Wimbledon singles crown since her idol Graf 20 years ago.It would be the second time this year she had beaten the American in a grand slam final, having triumphed at the Australian Open in January.Kerber, 28, would also become the first woman apart from Williams to win two grand slams in a season since Justine Henin in 2007, when the Belgian player was world number one.Williams, who turns 35 in September, is a six-times Wimbledon champion and the clear bookmakers’ favourite. But the Graf milestone is nevertheless sure to be weighing on her mind.last_img read more