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Governor says Cut another 3% I'll have all the news for you in just a second, First this... µ 8am Discount Travel µ 9am Ace It's 78° Fahrenheit 65% humidity. Clear Skies Wind out of the East North East at 6 mph Barometric pressure is 29.98 rising Water temp: 79° in Charlotte Amalie St. Thomas We had point 01 inches of rain in the last 24 hours. Doppler radar shows: widely scattered showers. µ The Satellite Photo shows: Clear Skies The national weather forecast calls for Partly cloudy in the morning then becoming variably cloudy. Isolated showers. Highs 83. East winds 10 to 15 mph. Chance of rain less than 20 percent. On this Thursday March 3 we welcome : Ruby Princess to Austin Monsanto Marine Terminal At the top of the news on Thursday March 3 Federal Emergency Management Agency officials just announced the approval of $555,000 to the United States Virgin Islands under its Public Assistance funds. The grant funds cover damages to infrastructure as a result of the rain and flooding caused by Hurricane Earl in August 29 to 31 in 2010. More than 300,000 is for the Department of Public Works and Waste Management Authority gets 72,000. Smaller sums to Juan Luis Hospital, Schneider Hospital, Magen’s Bay Beach Authority Housing Finance Authority and others. News from the top. Governor John DeJongh sent letters to all government agency heads telling them to make another 3% cut in their spending. The Office of Management and Budget advised the budget appropriations will be reduced by 3% as of April first. The OMB wants a report from each agency by March 14 as to where they will be making reductions in their spending. The Governor sent letters went to the heads of the Supreme court and Superior court asking them to make the same 3% reductions in expenses. The Governor reminded the public that the courts are independent autonomous agencies, but asked them to come along with the budget reductions. The Governor says the burden of cutting budget will fall on the shoulders of ALL agencies to help weather the present financial challenge. Shared sacrifice is the Governor’s term. Delegate Dr. Donna Christensen met with her fellow delegates from the territories and the Interagency Group On Insular Affairs on Tuesday at the Department of Interior. The other territories mostly envy us. We have a huge trade advantage compared to the others – mostly due to the presence of HOVENSA on our shores. The delegate quizzed the Department of Education about why the territories are excluded from programs like Race to the Top and Promise Neighborhoods. She also asked Homeland Security about a special visa to allow residents of neighboring islands to come to the Virgin Islands for shopping. And health care. And she had a Big Thank You to the USDA Rural development program for their substantial investment in broadband connectivity for the islands. And finally the delegate had a Big Thank You to the Dept. of Health and Human Services for their support for including the territories in the health care reform movement. And our inclusion in consumer provisions and the insurance exchanges and for working to lift the cap on Medicaid I love it when crooks make stupid mistakes. Police on St. John arrested Edward Richards, and Mariano Amaro, The men were charged with Possession of Stolen Property. A woman had her purse stolen from her car . Later the same day Edward Richards tried to sell her the stolen jewelry from the purse. Richards sold some of the stolen jeweler to another person, later identified as Mariano Amaro. Amaro was also located and arrested by St. John police about an hour later. The message – when you get out of your car, lock the doors and don’t leave valuables in cars. The message to the crooks, don’t be stupid. News from WAPA – they have Tip Top construction on the job installing the new Anna’s retreat Phase one water line extension. They will excavate trenches and lay pipe from Route 384 in Old Tutu along McGregor Lane and Olson Route to Route 40 at the Donoe Bypass. The roads will be closed during construction except for residents going to their homes. Wapa is having water trouble and will effect water conservation from 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM and from 10:00 PM to 5:00 AM in Lindberg Bay, Contant, Anna’s Fancy, Altona, Solberg., Upper Savan, Agnes Fancy, Frenchtown, Hospital ground, Berg’s Home and Estate Thomas. Senate Committee on Government Operations, Energy and Veterans Affairs heard from hotel developers about creating new hotel rooms on St. Croix and developments on all islands. Financing is the problem. The bankers want all the permits in place before they lend money Senators heard from Robin Bay’s Seven Hills Beach resort and casino and from William and Punch and from Golden Resorts. All had the same thing to say. They all need renewals of expired permits or new permits form the Corp of Engineers or other permits but all three are optimistic that they can resolve these issues and move forward. Paul Golden says they will have fund by September and start construction by year’s end. William and punch need permission to move the main road by their property. The committee told the government agencies – move these permits along. Senate Committee on Planning and Environmental Protection is meeting on St. Thomas to take testimony on a modification to the Coastal Zone Permit to Marriott's Frenchman's Reef and Morning Star Resort. Here comes another Cultural Education “Virgin Islands Personality Essay Competition”. Students in the middle, junior and senior high students are invited to write an essay for March about Mrs. Myra Keating-Smith in the St. Thomas-St. John District and Mr. Ulmont James in the St. Croix District. Essays must have a minimum of 300 words, citing a minimum of three sources. Entries must be hand delivered by 4:45 p.m. March 25th NO ELECTRONIC SUBMISSIONS. For more information contact the Cultural Education Offices at: 774-0100on St. Thomas or 718-3645, on St. Croix. World Day of Prayer is coming up Friday March 4 at Nisky Moravian Church the children service is at 6:30 PM and the main World Day of Prayer service is at 7:00 PM. Women are asked to wear white. Men are asked to come and be creative. World Day of Prayer service is on Friday March 4 at the Ebenezer Methodist Church in Estate Richmond Christiansted. – the service will begin at 7:00 PM. Yesterday you heard that Governor John DeJongh signed new rules and regulations for day care and early child care services. that will go into effect on April 1st. The new rules call for more accountability from day care providers, educational requirements of the staff, requirements for annual training, training in first aid and CPR and the layout of facilities Now here is the Department of Human Services Office of Childcare and Regulatory Services hosting an Early Learning Guidelines training on St. Croix on today and Fridayat the Arthur Able Complex in Frederiksted; On St. Thomas the presentations are Thursday, March 10th and Friday, the 11th at the Sugar Estate Head Start complex. For more information please contact 773-2323 ext 2078 or 774-0930 ext 4183. Do you know what sexting is? Some 80% teenagers have the use of a cell phone all day long. One in five teens has sent a photo of themselves nude or semi-nude or used their cell phone to send explicit sex massages using the phone. Now the VI Bar Association is teaming up with federal law enforcement and the Department of Justice to teach the community about the illicit use of cell phones. High School students are going to get lessons on what’s illegal to do with a cell phone.

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