21SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Credit union bribery is illegal.Perhaps this is news to no one, but I was reminded of this recently when asked by a NAFCU-member whether a credit union employee could accept a monetary gift of thanks from a member. While gifts of appreciation and other gratuities from members to credit union employees are, in most cases, innocent and well-intentioned, an employee’s receipt of such gifts can raise bribery concerns.Code of ConductNCUA has an old, but still effective, Interpretive Ruling and Policy Statement (IRPS) from 1987 (See, IRPS 87-1) that provides guidance to federally insured credit unions with respect to the Bank Bribery Act. See, 18 U.S.C. §215. Among other things, IRPS 87-1 “encourages federally-insured credit unions to adopt codes of conduct that describe the prohibitions of the bank bribery law” and recommends procedures to ensure compliance with the law.By way of brief background, the Bank Bribery Act generally prohibits a credit union “officer, director, employee, agent, or attorney ” from seeking or accepting anything of value, with the corrupt intent to be influenced or rewarded in connection with any business or transaction of the credit union. The law also prohibits anyone from offering or giving anything of value to a credit union officer, director, employee, agent, or attorney in connection with any business or transaction of the credit union, with the intent to corruptly influence or reward that person. continue reading »
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest The vexing problem of phosphorus in the water continues to make big headlines and haunt animal agriculture. This political hot button, however, has led to some positive developments in research regarding on-farm practices and technology. One of the most recently announced innovations addressing this problem is the Phosphorus Recovery System (PRS) from Quasar Energy that removes nearly all of the phosphorus from manure.The Brown family dairy farm near New Bremen, in the heart of one of Ohio’s key livestock regions, hosted an event in conjunction with the Quasar Energy Group demonstrating the new Phosphorus Recovery System (PRS) in July.“It’s funny that we are doing this here because I’m probably the one that helped start this phosphorus problem in the first place,” Alvin Brown said. “I used to want every inch of every field covered with manure, and now, we are working to reverse that idea and the growing problem.”Alvin started his farm with 10 dairy heifers in 1959, and his son, Lou, is now running the farm with about 275 milking cows along with 180 heifers at a near-by farm. Lou has put great effort into helping find new ways to reduce the phosphorus issues in his area. He is a member of the Auglaize County Soil and Water Board, Lake Loramie Advisory Board, Ag Solutions, Great Lakes Initiative, and Top of Ohio. On top of all those organizations, he is also currently serving as the Director of Ohio Dairy Producers.“It was not just random luck that our farm was chosen for this demonstration with Quasar,” Lou said. “Our whole family has put so much time and focus on this issue, that it only makes sense to have it here today.”Lou Brown hosted the Phosphorus Recovery System (PRS) demonstration from Quasar Energy on his farm near New Bremen.Lou’s son, Dan, obtained his master’s degree in biodigesters at The Ohio State University in Wooster where he actually worked with Quasar on the research and other aspects of the project to develop the PRS. They started this project three years ago hoping to develop a digester to help lower the amount of phosphorus in the manure from their livestock.On the Brown farm alone, their cows will produce up to eight tons of manure per day. In order to be able to move this large amount of manure off the farm, the Browns have a nutrient management plan in place with more than 1,000 acres of land where they are allowed to spread the manure. Everyone who raises livestock in a distressed watershed, such as theirs, must have one of these plans set up with their local Natural Resources Conservation Service in order to spread any manure on the land. This practice is progressively being recommended to other watersheds as well for prevention of phosphorus issues in the future.According to the Quasar Energy Group, farmers are not solely responsible for the current phosphorus management issues. There are 1,200 wastewater treatment plants between Wapakoneta and Lake Erie that contribute to these problems, At peak flow, 710,000 gallons of water flow into Lake Erie just from the Maumee River every second with phosphorus from farms and water treatments facilities collected along the way.This is where the Phosphorus Recovery System can be beneficial. As of right now, a farmer is not allowed to spread manure within 200 feet of surrounding waterways because of phosphorus run-off concerns. By removing the phosphorus from the manure, it opens up the possibility of removing those barriers. This can also add other opportunities for manure application including sidedressing corn, depending on the nitrates in the test results, or selling the phosphorus that was removed. This dried form of phosphorus removed from the manure through the process is easy to transport, and it has the possibility to be extremely valuable to the farmers, wastewater treatment plants, and cities who choose to remove the phosphorus from the manure and other wastes.Quasar has not been able to completely remove the phosphorus, but the group has been able to reduce the levels from 204 parts per million to just .3 parts per million in their tests.Quasar is able to accomplish this through a five-step system. First, the manure is pumped into the system from the holding pond. The manure is then processed through the centrifuge that separates the solids from the liquids. The solids from this separation have a total solid content of approximately 25% and contain 90% to 95% of the manure’s phosphorus. Those solids get conveyed to a different storage unit where liquids from the segregates drain into the collection tank located below the centrifuge where it is mixed with liquid hydrated lime. The lime helps control the pH to at least 10.5 to enable thickening and precipitation of the remaining solids that were not captured in the first separation process.A pump sends this material to a lime mixing tank where it gets further mixed to ensure a uniform pH. The material will overflow out of the top of the mixing tank into a lime settling tank. The solids settle to the bottom of the tank and the liquids leave through a top outlet during this phase. The settled solids and liquids then get pumped out of the tank into a filter press or plate frame press. It will squeeze the liquids out of the material, and this liquid material will have a phosphorus content less than 1 milligram per liter, which can be used for irrigation. The separated lime solids, or lime cake as the Quasar Energy Group likes to call it, can be blended with the solids that were collected from the centrifuge and transported out to another farm or away from the distressed watershed.The work for the PRS was funded through a USDA-NRCS Conservation Innovation Grant of almost $1 million. Quasar Energy Group is now currently partnering with the Parker-Hannifin Corporation of Columbus that makes many of the fittings for the PRS to make it more affordable for the farmers. The two groups believe that they can achieve the same results with fewer costs and a smaller-scale system that farmers can have easier access to and could afford to purchase for themselves or at least with a group of neighboring farmers. Brown thinks farmers would only have to put in two to three hours a day into separating if they had the system directly on their farm each day. Depending on the value of the removed phosphorus, this could easily be worth the extra time put into this process.The demonstration that took place at the Brown’s farm was only the second public demonstration for the PRS.“This is not a well-known John Deere tractor; it is the first of its kind,” Lou said. “Some people are bit gun shy of the new technology while others are willing to lead this project. Regardless, the wide variety of people in attendance from neighboring farmers to the local NRCS, Farm Bureau, Extension, and even senators goes to show how important and beneficial this system could be for Lake Erie and other distressed areas.”
Tricks of the TradeImage: Monty Python and the Holy Grail via Michael White ProductionsIf you’re interested in recording your own sounds, check out Recording Foley and Sound Effects: The Fundamentals. Here are a few common tricks you can practice recording on your own.Breaking bones: break a stalk of celery or head of lettuceBody punches: hit a phone bookFlapping bird wings: wave a pair of leather glovesCrunching snow: crush a leather pouch filled with corn starchWhoosh: wave around a thin stick or arrowHorse hooves: clap together two coconut shells cut in half — as seen above in Monty Python and the Holy Grail Modern Foley ArtistsToday, foley artists create entire atmospheres. They record the sounds of characters, props, and even clothing. Gary Hecker is a veteran foley artist who works on many of today’s blockbuster films. He started his professional career in the 1970s and 80s, working on films like The Exorcist, Friday the 13th, The Empire Strikes Back, and Back to the Future.Hecker now has well over 300 credits to his name. In this video from the SoundWorks Collection, Hecker shows you how he used classic foley techniques to create sound effects for the film Robin Hood, starting with the process of recording the footsteps of the main characters. From snapping celery stalks to slapping phone books, learn how foley artists use everyday objects to create realistic sound effects in film.Top image via SoundWorks CollectionFoley is the art of creating sound effects for radio, film, and television. The term actually comes from a man, Jack Donovan Foley, who made sound effects for live radio broadcasts. He focused on creating realistic sounds with the tools he had around him rather than using generic sounds made in other programs. This was reminiscent of the theatrical sounds of vaudeville shows.Image: Jack Foley via The Art of FoleyJack Foley started working for Universal Studios in 1914. By the time “talkies” came around in the 1920s, studios wanted to create authentic sound effects for their films. On set, microphones were only used to record dialogue. Therefore sound effects would have to be recorded after the film was shot.Foley assembled a team that would project the film onto a screen while recording an audio track of sound effects — mostly footsteps. The earliest films had them adding the sounds of walking and doors opening and closing.Foley became the expert in sound effects audio recording. He continued to perform up until his death in 1967. Many of the techniques he developed are still used today.Three Types of FoleyFoley artists do not create every sound in a film. Complex sounds like car engines or computer noises fall under the direction of a Sound FX Editor, who uses a library of sounds. The foley artists focus on three key areas: footsteps, movement, and specific props.Image: Universal Studios Foley Pit via The Studio Tour1. FootstepsThis category is self-explanatory. The footsteps of the main character are recorded very early in the process. This isn’t as easy as walking by a microphone. Foley artists wear certain shoes and walk on specific surfaces to attain the right sounds for a film.These surfaces are called foley pits, which offer all sorts of different flooring types. This allows the foley artist to instantly record the sounds of a character walking across a lawn, onto a sidewalk, and into a home. This also includes footsteps of animals, like the famous sound of galloping horse hooves.2. MovementMovement focuses on the sounds of clothing a character is wearing. This isn’t just loud clothes like a knight’s armor — even denim blue jeans make a sound when a character crosses their legs or squirms in a chair.Image via Shutterstock3. PropsCreating the sounds made by props can fall under the foley artist or sound editor. Foley artists tend to work with props that characters interact with, like a sword being unsheathed.In this video from CBS Sunday Morning, foley artist Marko Costanzo shows how he used leaves to create the swirling sound of the witch from Into the Woods and how he cracked celery to create the sound of breaking bones for The Big Lebowski. Also, don’t forget you can complement your foley work with the Essential SFX packages found right here on PremiumBeat!
OKLAHOMA CITY – MARCH 13: The Oklahoma State Cowboys mascot during the Phillips 66 Big 12 Men’s Basketball Championship Semifinals at the Ford Center March 13, 2009 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)The basketball version of the Bedlam rivalry is taking place tonight in Stillwater, and No. 24 Oklahoma and Oklahoma State are involved in a tight contest midway through the second half. Both teams need a victory not only for bragging rights but to keep on track for an NCAA berth. It’s been a quiet night so far for Oklahoma State’s star forward Le’Bryan Nash, but the 6-foot-7 senior does have one major highlight. It came early in the second half, in the form of a gorgeous no-look pass to teammate Michael Cobbins for a dunk.Flashy and effective. This is an entertaining game right now between two bitter rivals.[ H/T: @pistolsguy ]
New Delhi: Following India’s World Cup exit in the semi-finals, legendary India batsman Sunil Gavaskar has questioned why Virat Kohli has automatically continued in his position as skipper even though his appointed ended with the showpiece event in England and Wales. The former India skipper feels that there should have been a formal meeting to re-appoint Kohli. “That they selected the team for West Indies without first having a meeting to select the captain brings up the question of whether Virat Kohli is the captain of the team at his or the selection committee’s pleasure,” Gavaskar wrote in his column for Mid-Day. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh “To the best of our knowledge his (Kohli’s) appointment was till the World Cup. After that, it was incumbent on the selectors to meet even if it was for five minutes for his reappointment,” he added. However, the M.S.K Prasad led selection committee named Kohli as captain of the team across all the three formats for the Windies tour that starts with T20Is. Further, the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) has stated that they will not review the performance of the team in the showpiece event and only the manager’s report will be looked into. Also Read – Vijender’s next fight on Nov 22, opponent to be announced later Gavaskar also went ahead and questioned the way Kohli is getting his choice of team. “Speaking of lame ducks, the Indian selection committee appears to be one. After the reappointment, he (captain) gets invited to the meeting for his views on the selecting the players for the team. By bypassing the procedure, the message that goes out is that while the players like Kedar Jadhav, Dinesh Karthik get dropped after below expectation performance, the captain continues despite much below par expectations where the team did not even reach the finals,” Gavaskar said. Certain sections in the BCCI have also been vocal that spliting the captaincy could be a way forward for the Indian team as they now look to plan for the 2023 World Cup.
“I am growing increasingly troubled by the lack of respect Mr. Zuckerberg, and Facebook continues to show our nations and the citizens we represent by once again declining our calls to give testimony,” said Zimmer. “There are still many unanswered questions and new concerning revelations that I believe only Mr. Zuckerberg, as CEO of Facebook, can respond to. Just this week came news that Facebook had pulled down 115 accounts from its platforms that ‘may be engaged in coordinated inauthentic behaviour’.”“By rejecting our calls to appear, it calls into question how seriously Mr. Zuckerberg and Facebook take protecting our citizens’ privacy and ‘fake news’ vulnerabilities,” Zimmer continued.“That is why I am once again adding my name to the growing list of Parliamentarians from around the world who are calling on Mr. Zuckerberg to answer our questions in person.” OTTAWA – Parliamentarians worldwide are renewing the call for Mark Zuckerberg to appear before an international joint committee in London.Bob Zimmer, Member of Parliament for Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies and Chair of the Standing Committee on Access to Information, Privacy and Ethics, as well as Damian Collins, Member of Parliament and Chair of the UK Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, have been joined by Committee Chairs from Australia, Argentina and Ireland in calling on Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, to appear before a special international joint committee on disinformation and ‘fake news’.Last week Zimmer and Collins called on Zuckerberg to give testimony at a hearing in London on November 27. Facebook has declined this invitation.
FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – The Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training was at the Fort St. John Hospital on Friday to announce that a Nursing Degree Program will be coming to Northeast B.C.According to the Government, this program will ensure more patients in the region can access care that will improve their quality of life, while students can pursue health-care education and training closer to home.Education Minister, Melanie Mark, says students have been advocating for a nursing program for years and that this new program is a result of the efforts made by local stakeholders. “For years, students in the northeast of the province have been advocating for the education and training to pursue a career in registered nursing closer to home. We know that people are more likely to stay and work in the communities where they get their education and training. The new nursing degree program is the result of strong partnerships and engagement with local stakeholders. Our government is proud to invest in the next generation of healers and health-care professionals.”The first class of 16 student spaces, to be operated out of Northern Lights College in Fort St. John, is expected to be in operation by September 2020.Total Provincial funding for this new program is $1.1 million.The full announcement can be seen here:
Lucknow: Can Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra or other members of the Gandhi family distinguish between sugarcane and chari, a locally-grown fodder crop, asked Uttar Pradesh minister Suresh Rana. This was his reply when he was asked about Priyanka Gandhi’s attack on the government over a recent news report that claimed dues of sugarcane farmers had crossed Rs 10,000 crore in Uttar Pradesh. “When the Congress was in power, it did not pay dues to the farmers. If Priyanka Gandhi or any other member of the Gandhi family can distinguish between sugarcane and chari, I will start believing that they have the right to speak on farmers,” he told PTI in an interview. Also Read – Uddhav bats for ‘Sena CM’ The UP minister of state (independent charge) for sugarcane development and sugar mills also claimed that Congress president Rahul Gandhi has “accepted moral defeat” and has “fled from Amethi”. On the steps taken by the Yogi Adityanath government for cane farmers, Rana said, “When our government was formed, there were pending cane dues but so far, dues amounting to nearly Rs 60,000 crore have been paid.” He said the amount was bigger than the budgets of some states, but the government paid it. Also Read – Farooq demands unconditional release of all detainees in J&K “In the previous regimes of the SP and the BSP, nothing was done for the sugarcane farmers and as a result, they died of starvation,” he alleged. The minister said that sugarcane cultivation area in the state has increased by 22 per cent to 28 lakh hectare which showed that the Adityanath government has worked for the welfare of sugarcane farmers. Out of 119 sugar mills in the state, there are 70 whose dues for 30-45 days had to be paid, Rana said, adding that there were some mills where the dues were pending only for the current season of 2-2.5 months. Sugarcane season is generally from November to April and it might extend to May, he said. When asked whether the BJP has been able to overcome last year’s shocking defeat in the Kairana bypolls, Rana said, “The by-elections were not for electing or deciding the prime minister of the country or the chief minister of the state.” “Everybody knew that Prime Minister Narendra Modi will continue to be at the Centre, while Yogi Adityanath will continue to be in the state. This (Lok Sabha) election is to make Modiji the prime minister once again. Areas which witnessed more than 70 per cent polling in the assembly elections saw nearly 50 per cent polling in bypolls,” he said. Rana is an MLA from Thana Bhawan constituency in Shamli district. The seat is an assembly segment of Kairana parliamentary constituency. The minister said the party’s margin of win in the Lok Sabha elections will be bigger than the 2014 polls. Taking a jibe at Congress president Rahul Gandhi on contesting from Wayanad in Kerala in addition to Amethi, he said, “Rahul Gandhi has fled from Amethi. People of that place have seen a glimmer of development (vikaas ka diyaa) only during the five years of Modi government.” “He (Rahul Gandhi) has accepted moral defeat and has fled apprehending that the voters of Amethi will seek an answer from him for duping them,” Rana claimed. On the SP-BSP-RLD alliance, he said, “There have been attempts to forge alliances on the basis of caste, but these are not natural unions. This is only an alliance of leaders, and not of their votes or party workers. People have forged a natural alliance with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.” On the importance of western Uttar Pradesh, Rana said, “Since it is situated in close proximity to the National Capital Region, hence the western part of the state also has its share of importance in national politics.” “Western UP has always been associated with major agro-political movements. Secondly anti-national forces tried to expand their footprints during the previous governments in the region. The news of exodus also first emanated from western UP,” the UP minister said. The BJP has done a lot of work on these issues, and hence the voters are enthusiastic about the saffron party, he said.