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Watch out for this kind of phishing

It's 79° Fahrenheit  73% humidity. partly cloudy skies
Wind out of the East North East at 21 mph  
Barometric pressure is 30.04 and rising  
Water temp: 78.8° in Charlotte Amalie  St. Thomas
We had  .02 inches of rain in the last 24 hours.
Doppler radar shows: Mostly Clear Skies  The Satellite Photo shows: Clear Skies

The national weather forecast calls for Mostly cloudy with numerous showers. Highs 85. Breezy. East winds 20 to 25 mph. Chance of rain 70 percent.

On this Tuesday March 5 we welcome the Liberty to Havensight  Dock – it’s a one ship day

At the top of the news on Tuesday March 5  

St. Croix the Joint Board of Elections made short work of a long list of complaints about elections. Four issues top the list. First they want the law changed to allow people to use paper ballots. Second, make sure the voting machines are federally certified and define what functions they should perform. Third, the Joint board wants to hire its own legal counsel and they want to be able to operate separately from the Dept. of Property and Procurement as a means of becoming a more independent entity. They plan to send the four issues to the Senators as separate items rather than part of a long laundry list of issues.   Former Senator Bert Bryan was elected chair of the group and he said he will ask representatives of the companies that manufacture federally certified voting machines to come demonstrate their machines in the territory.

Today the Senators will take testimony on Act 7240 – the proposed Next Generation project that intends to bring high speed internet to all islands.  The world’s fiber optics all pass though our area but our links to the state-of-the-art technology is like a dirt path leading to an Interstate highway.  The idea of Next generation is to open the link from the Internet providers to the global fiber optic system.  The federal government will put up 68 million dollars and the Virgin Islands is the only US jurisdiction to win all four of the possible grants for this project.  BUT the local government has to invest 42 million and that calls for fresh bonds and senators to approve that plan.  The hearings are on Tuesday 9:30 AM on St. Thomas . With few African America and Hispanic households making use of high speed internet, the issue is which side of the digital divide do we want the Virgin Islands to land. On the side with the havs or on the side with the have nots.

GERS Board of Trustees  are meeting on St. Croix at the Westin for the annual three day Investment managers review presentations.  They will be ther working through Wednesday. One topic is the rolling impact of the Japanese Tsunami on businesses all over the world. With so many parts coming from Japanese factories, the shutdown of some business is having an impact throughout the financial markets and the situation in the Middle East is also rippling through the financial markets – all of this impacts the GERS investments.

News from Country Day School – that weekend fire in the art building was investigated – Accidental cause, not arson.

The month of April is National Alcohol Awareness month encouraging everyone to get information on alcohol and alcoholism.  This is an Alcohol free week and everyone is encouraged to go alcohol free for three days.  If you experience discomfort in 72 hours then you are perhaps an alcoholic and should see a medical doctor about this disease. Alcoholism is a treatable disease, not a moral weakness. – people can and do recover from alcoholism. Coming Up April 28 on St. Croix and 29 on St. Thomas the University and COAST will have public forums with an in depth look at alcohol and alcoholism. Call 775-1255

Be on the lookout for bogus e-mail asking for your bank numbers or personal information.  One of the nation’s largest marketing service companies had a breach of their security. Epsilon had data  from some 2,500 corporate clients stolen. They contain lot of people’s e-mail addresses and what banks and businesses these people use.  There is expected to be an unswing in phishing attacks where crooks send messages that LOOK like they come from companies like Wal-Mart, Best Buy, Citigroup, J.P. Morgan, Walgreens, Capital One Financial, Barclay's Bank, TiVo and Kroger. The bogus mail will ask for confirmation of personal information.  DO not respond and send the crooks your personal information.
News on the Government Access Cable channel – now a new show called Eye on the Islands a 30 minute talk show format dedicated to the people and issues of the Virgin Islands.  The host is Sara Lezama and she will be joined by local guests who can talk about our islands and upcoming events.  The program is produced by Lambert Media and will air on Government Access Channel on Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 7:00 PM and again at 10:00 PM . Saturday and Sunday at noon and 6:00 PM.

The month of April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month in the Virgin Islands Governor John DeJongh issued a proclamation an  urges all people in the Virgin Islands to be aware of the impact of sexual assault. Sexual violence has profound consequences over a lifetime. On April 5th – everyone is encouraged to wear blue to show their awareness of sexual assault. And April 16 the Women’s coalition will hold an event to speak out against sexual violence. at Caribbean Museum Center of the Arts in Frederiksted.

This month is also Autism Awareness month and the Governor asks all citizens to become aware of autism and the global autism epidemic and encourage everyone to become aware of early diagnosis and intervention.  Autism is a lifelong disability that arises in a child’s first three years of life. Early diagnosis helps improve the lives of children. Coming Up – April 19 at UVI St. Thomas campus and April 20 on th St. Croix campus there will be an Autism Conference.

Finally some hard news.  The Bureau of Economic Research completed their living wage study that began back in the 27th legislature then Senator Basil Ottley passed a bill to have the Bureau establish what is a living wage in the Virgin Islands?  Food costs are 30% higher in the Virgin Islands than on the continent. Child care costs average $539 per child all the most significant with the number of households with children under 18 headed by a single female, medical insurance, a whopping 29% of our population is uninsured  while only 16% of the continentals are uninsured.  The price of an average home here $465,000 and the rate of homeownership is a low 49% compared to 67% homeownership on the continent.  The cost of living is higher here.  The report is supposed to spur our government to enact a minimum wage that will cover the cost of living.

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