05 February 2014
Weather in the World : 34 degrees in Philadelphia with rain, 30 degrees in New York City with freezing rain, 28 degrees in Boston with heavy snow and freezing fog, Washington DC has drizzle. Denver has -13 degrees, and Montréal has 16 degrees in Minneapolis -2 with light snow
78 Degrees in Crown Bay St. Thomas. Under clear skies.
76 % humidity
Barometric pressure is 30.02 inches
Wind is from East at 17 MPH
Point 1 inches of rain at WSTA in the last 24 hours.
National Weather Service says : Showers and thundershowers likely. High 78F. Winds E at 10 to 20 mph. Chance of rain 60%. An upper level trough extending across the Leeward Islands will remain in place over the next several days and will bring a sharp increase in moisture with scattered showers. An upper level ridge of high pressure will then build over the region next week leading to a drier weather pattern. A Small Craft Advisory remains in effect for the offshore Atlantic waters as seas average seven feet with winds to 19 knots
Cruise Ship News : The Eclipse, the Royal Princess, Carnival Conquest are at Havensight Dock
Westerdam and Allure of the seas is at Austin Monsanto Marine Terminal:
Headlines : good news from the HOVENSA closure, the fish are back at Kean school, should our EDC program be reorganized, and be careful what you throw away.
At the top of the news on !!AIR – February 5 Wednesday
You weren't expecting good news from the HOVENSA closure, but a new report from the Environmental Protection Agency says that our toxic emissions are way down. In 2011 the four facilities in the Virgin Islands that have to report their toxic releases dumped some 1.8 million pounds of toxic materials in the atmosphere onto the land or into the water. By 2012 that's down to point .3 million pounds. That's a reduction of 1.5 million pounds of nasty stuff that did not get into our environment. Almost all of that reduction is because HOVENSA was closed. 83 percent reduction in toxic substances in our environment.
The fish are back. Over at the Ivanna Eudora Kean High School, the tilapia farm has fish again. Remember back in October someone poisoned most of the fish. The aqua politics program teetered on the brink of closure. They rebuilt it. New freshwater, new plants, new filtration system, new security enhancements and as of yesterday 100 new fish hatchlings that came over from St. Croix. A big thank you to Gerard “Luz” James III who flew them over in his airplane. Students expect the harvest lettuce within a month. Oh and if someone wants to poison these fish they'll be on camera and visible online.
Should our economic development programs be reorganized? Senators asked that question yesterday in committee. They heard from Percival Clouden the executive director of the Economic Development Authority – He says 2,000 jobs of been created, and a half billion dollars invested in the community through the EDC program. But of 31 recent applicants only 13 actually started new businesses. Why? Because the benefit packages in other states and territories are more favorable than ours. Senators considered enhancing our program. Give tax breaks for 30 years instead of 20 years, reduce the residency requirement, make it easier to get approval. In the end, they held the bill in committee. Senators also examined the delinquent loans made by our Government Development Bank. There's some $9.3 million in total outstanding debt of which 6.7 million is past due. That’s 72 percent delinquent, most banks have around three percent delinquency. And some of our bad loans go back to the 1970s. There were no good answers why the authority is not more aggressive in collecting the debt. And why aren't the names of the debtors published? Wops, some of the debtors are former Senators and public figures.
Legislation is coming before our Senators to allow low income residents to use their supplemental nutrition assistance program benefits to purchase food from local farmers in farmers market. The idea is to make it easier for farmers to accept electronic benefits transfer cards from SNAP recipients when they pay for vegetables, fruit, meat, fish and dairy products at farmers markets. Senators sent the bill to the rules committee and said they'd find the funding source it gets to the full Senate.
Think about what you throw away. Someday some archaeologist may dig it up and try to figure out who you were and how you lived. In downtown Charlotte Amalie, archaeologists are sorting through a 2000-year-old trash pile. And they say it's one of the most compelling excavation sites in the region. On Main Street between market square and Club 75, the archaeologists are pulling up shells, bones, pottery, some of which is painted and engraved. Public works crews found shards of pottery as they were digging sewer line, then the archaeologists moved in. They call it a “Midden” or trash pile belonging to the people who were the first residents in the Virgin Islands, around 2,000 years ago. Time is limited. The site has to be closed by Carnival, so they are digging frantically - unearthing what was trash then, but now - looks like treasures to us. By digging up the artifacts and preserving them, we get a window one what life was like here 2,000 years ago.
You're listening to Good News Headlines on WSTA. More news, first this
Cancer Support Virgin Islands meets first Wednesday of the month at noon at the Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute Bennie Benjamin Auditorium. Feb 5: Dr. Sklar, will be talking about building a holistic safety net to support quality of life. The lecture is free on Wednesday, February 5 at noon at the Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute.
coming up tomorrow Delegate Dr. Donna Christensen is hosting a workshop on federal contracting. On Thursday on St. Thomas and Friday on St. Croix the delegate is bringing in representatives from Washington to help you get more business with the federal government it's called doing business with the federal government 101. For more information contact the delegates office.
Tomorrow is also Virgin Islands our squadron day, as the governor issued a proclamation acknowledging the role of US power squadron in developing safe boating in our region. February 6 these United States power squadron day in celebration of 100 years of service of the power squadron, and commemorate the contributions of the same domicile and power squadron to the boating community the Virgin Islands.
Are you a GERS member looking for your 1099? GERS Administrator, Austin L. Nibbs would like to advise retirees that their 1099 will be in the mail this week. “This is the first year that the Retirement System has generated and printed the 1099s in house and the process has taken a bit longer than anticipated,” Nibbs apologized for the delay.
Here comes National Digital Learning Day today. The idea is to showcase how teachers and students are using digital tools to advance the Department’s priorities: Look for of teacher and leader effectiveness, student achievement and positive school cultures. The St Croix district technology coordinator, Dr. Everett Ryan says “We are collaborating with K-12 school administrators and teachers from ten elementary schools and five secondary schools to select a focus that exemplifies the use of technology and media among students and staff at their respective sites,” Ryan explained. “We will also engage UVI graduate students enrolled in educational technology courses to facilitate some school-based activities.”
At the Lew Muckle School they are using iPADS and Kindles to teach students how to download interesting books to help encourage them to read more. Over at Arthur Richards Junior High School they have a technology contest for students and the technology contest for faculty and staff. They will also have a television broadcast on integrating technology into the classroom. At Juanita Gardine Elementary School, they are planning a WebQuest - like a treasure hunt where they have to find things on the Internet and create PowerPoint deliverables. And at Alfredo Andrews Elementary School students will complete digital stories about the influence of technology on their lives. Digital learning Day is Wednesday.