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78 Degrees in Crown Bay St. Thomas.  Under clear  Skies.
78  %  humidity
Barometric pressure is 30.01 inches
Wind is from East at 10 MPH
No rain at WSTA in the last 24 hours.  

National Weather Service says :    Partly cloudy. High 77F. Winds SE at 10 to 15 mph.

Cruise Ship News:  the Norwegian Gem Is at Havensight Dock, Eurodam is at Austin Monsanto Marine Terminal:

Headlines :  Governor has a plan to save the GERS, Department of Health has new emergency vehicles on St Croix and here comes news about the Virtues of the week.

At the top of the news on !!AIR – March 13 Thursday

Well it's about time. The Governor charged a task force with developing a plan to save the GERS. Here comes that plan. We all know about the unfunded liability. More money goes out and comes in. GERS Is in the hole to the tune of $1.8 billion dollars. In 2012 the annual deficit was $138.3 million a year. $105 million in.  $244 million out.  
Now the governor has submitted draft legislation to the legislature with major reforms to the government's pension system. Some of these ideas will be bitter pills to swallow but the governor says we cannot wait to take action. We must safeguard the system and protect the retirement savings for retirees. He calls the planned changes a priority that we must address now. On its current trajectory the system will run out of money by 2023. The Governor is proposing four steps to reduce the existing pension debt:
First, ask employers and employees to contribute a larger amount toward pension benefits. The bill raises employee contributions one percentage point each year for the next seven years so government employees will pay 15 percent by the year 2021. The government's contribution would also increase hitting 31.5 percent by 2021. The bill would also raise contribution rates for Senators and Judges.
Second - reduce benefits already being received. Current retirees benefits would drop by 10 percent. The bill calls for increasing the age and years of service needed before retiring.  Early retirement would rise from age 50 to age 55 and regular retirement age would rise from age 60 to age 65.
Third step is to limit the annual cost of living increase. Under the bill - cost of living increases will be suspended until the year 2019. At that time the GERS board will review cost-of-living increases every five years.  The fourth step is to change the formula used to calculate benefits.    

Senate President Shawn Michael Malone said the Finance Committee will take up the governor's bill, along with similar legislation submitted by GERS. The Senate will examine all the issues and develop a consensus approach. Malone said "It is going to be tough. There won't be any easy decisions. But if we don't do something, it will jeopardize the whole system.” He went on saying “Everyone is being squeezed right now, with high electric rates hurting everyone and government insurance costs going up, making it that much more difficult to impose yet another burden on government employees and retirees.

The Department of Health, Office of Emergency Medical Services, in St. Croix has purchased three new Emergency Medical Services Rapid Response Vehicles.  They bought a Chevrolet Silverado Truck that can secure up to ten backboards for emergency treatment in response to a Mass Casualty Incident.  It can also tow the Emergency Medical Services trailer that has equipment and medical supplies for a high casualty emergency. They bought two SUVs as rapid response vehicles for Emergency Medical Technicians.  Plans are in place to purchase the same rapid response vehicles for the St. Thomas/St. John District.  Commissioner of health Darice Plaskett said the new emergency vehicles will ensure that EMS continues to meet and exceed national standards of pre-hospital emergency care.

Here's a chance to make some good news. Two of our local soccer students have won scholarships to study at the University in the states, play soccer, and develop their skills. Coach Dale Richards says these are two of his best soccer players ever. On his word alone Southern Nazarene University in Oklahoma offered our two best soccer players a scholarship. Partial scholarship the first year full-scale up to full scholarship after that. They need more money for that first year. Freddie “Dinya”, a senior at CAHS and Danny Smith a sophomore at the University are poised for greatness in soccer. They need an Angel. They need someone to help pay the balance that isn't covered by the first year scholarship. You can help call coach Dale Richards. Here comes the phone number, 244-4045.

You're listening to Good News Headlines on WSTA. More news, first this
When you need Taxi, you need Yogi Call 626-5695. That’s 626-5695. Yogi  

The Office of Veterans Affairs has a workshop this evening on St Croix. It’s about “Survivors Benefits”.  This evening at 6:30 pm Croix at the Bromley Berkley Post 133 in Frederiksted.  Harry Daniel says all survivors, spouses of veterans, caretakers of veterans – you should attend this workshop to be better prepared when the times come to receive survivor’s benefits. Sometimes loved ones have problems when the VA doesn’t know about the relatives.  Workshop is this evening on St Croix call 773-6663

The next Chamber Business After Hours will be hosted by The Virgin Islands Waste Management Authority on this evening  from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Petite Pump Bar & Restaurant.   

St. Thomas Cricket association is planning for the 2014 Neil Carty Cricket league games.  They are asking managers and team captains of last season’s teams to meet this evening at 7:00 PM at Cancryn School Cricket grounds.  Virgin Islands One, Owalie Stars, Progressive, New generation and Nevis teams.  This evening at 7 at Cancryn school cricket ground.

Is your estate planned? Is it clear who inherits what? The Lieutenant Governor says many people attempt to recover a deceased relative’s financial assets or resolve property ownership and have a lot of trouble that could have been easily avoided with basic estate planning. The Lieutenant Governor’s Office is hosting free estate planning seminars.  
On St Croix on Saturday, March 15, at the UVI Great Hall.  
On St. Thomas the workshop is on Saturday, March 22 at the Charlotte Kimelman Cancer Institute.  The workshop is from 9:00 am to noon.  The public is invited, No charge.  You will get tools to make the best decisions about protecting your assets for your children and spouse. call 773-6459

The Department of Tourism is creating a new commercial about summer in the Virgin Islands. Tell Tale Pictures is hiring people to be in that commercial. They want Virgin Islanders of all ages and ethnic backgrounds to participate in the "Virgin Islands Nice" Tourism Commercial. You’ll get paid.
Casting call:
on St John Saturday, March 15 from 9 to noon at the Marketplace,
on Saint Thomas on Saturday, through 2:00 PM to 5:30 at Tutu Park Mall in the center court.
on St. Croix Sunday March 16 from 11 am to 3 pm at sunny isle shopping center amphitheater.
Talent will be paid. For more information call 917-865-7427 or email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ,

Every week on Monday you hear me tell you the virtue of the week. The virtues Project is a global initiative in 100 countries to instill the practice of virtues and everyday life. Now, Dara Feldman chairman of the virtues Project has been teaching government staff in human services and the Department of Education about the virtues. More than 300 people taking introductory course. 60 have been certified. Dara Feldman gave virtues workshops at Project Link, the Women’s Coalition, in  the high schools and at the Youth Rehabilitation Center. She says the young people at the Youth Rehabilitation Center “totally get it,” Justice, kindness, cleanliness and reliability are some of the 52 virtues discussed in books published by the Virtues Project. I give you one virtue each week.Learn more at www.virtuesproject.org.

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