Tuesday, August 09, 2011
Specific IQ genes still elusive, latest hunt finds
ALICIA CHANG and MALCOLM RITTER ― Associated Press

LOS ANGELES (AP)—Scientists who hunt for “intelligence genes” used to think there were fewer than half a dozen of them.

In recent years, they determined there may be at least 1,000 - each with just a tiny effect on the differences in people’s IQ. A study released Tuesday found new evidence that many genes play a role in intelligence, but scientists still couldn’t pinpoint the specific genes involved.

Pauleen Brewer 08:14 PM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Military launches probe into helicopter crash
PAULINE JELINEK and LOLITA C. BALDOR ― Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP)—The military has opened an investigation into Saturday’s devastating helicopter crash in eastern Afghanistan that killed 30 U.S. troops and eight Afghans.

Pentagon officials would not discuss the details of the probe, but it will no doubt address a host of questions surrounding the crash, including a look at the insurgent threat and the instructions given to the special operations team crowded into the Chinook helicopter as it raced to assist other U.S. forces.

Pauleen Brewer 08:13 PM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
London tries tripling police presence to end riots
DAVID STRINGER and RAPHAEL G. SATTER ― Associated Press

LONDON (AP) - Thousands more police officers flooded London streets Tuesday in a bid to end Britain’s worst rioting in a generation as nervous shopkeepers closed early and some residents stood guard to protect their neighborhoods. An eerie calm prevailed in the city, but unrest spread across central and northern England on a fourth night of violence driven by poor, diverse and brazen crowds of young people.

Scenes of ransacked stores, torched cars and blackened buildings frightened and outraged Britons just a year before London is to host the summer Olympic Games, and brought demands for a tougher response from law enforcement.

Pauleen Brewer 08:11 PM | (6) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
AP IMPACT: Japan ignored own radiation forecasts
ERIC TALMADGE and MARI YAMAGUCHI ― Associated Press

NAMIE, Japan (AP)—Japan’s system to forecast radiation threats was working from the moment its nuclear crisis began. As officials planned a venting operation certain to release radioactivity into the air, the system predicted Karino Elementary School would be directly in the path of the plume emerging from the tsunami-hit Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear plant.

But the prediction helped no one. Nobody acted on it.

Pauleen Brewer 08:10 PM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
From Facebook

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Pauleen Brewer 08:59 AM | (2) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Comprehensive Plan Design Charrette to be Held Aug. 11

The 2012 Comprehensive Plan update process is now underway. Public input is essential to produce a new plan that reflects community consensus and identifies ways to maintain Charles County as an ideal place to live, work, shop and play.

Several Charles County Comprehensive Plan design charrettes have been scheduled for citizens. The series of similarly-structured, regionally specific follow-up meetings or “charrettes” are intended to give the community an opportunity to review and refine three distinct land use scenarios. Illustrated in three conceptual maps, the various scenarios have been developed as a result of public input on the visions, goals, and issues that should be addressed during the update process.

The next design charrette will be held on Thursday, August 11, at Mt. Hope/Nanjemoy Elementary School (9275 Ironsides Road) in Nanjemoy.

Sammy 06:10 AM | (1) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
For-profit schools challenged on $11B in U.S. aid
Daniel Malloy ― Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The U.S. Department of Justice and four states joined in a suit against Pittsburgh-based Education Management Corp. on Monday, alleging that the for-profit college company illegally compensated recruiters and thus was ineligible for $11.1 billion in federal funding over an eight-year span.

The lawsuit was filed under the False Claims Act in U.S. District Court in Western Pennsylvania by two former EDMC employees in 2007, and the Justice Department announced in May that it would join the complaint.
[...]
Under a 1992 law, schools are ineligible for federal grants and loans, which form the vast majority of their revenue, if they pay recruiters solely on the number of students they enroll.

Sammy 05:56 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Comcast rolls out Internet access for low-income families
USA TODAY

Cable and Internet provider Comcast is launching a new program to offer discounted Internet service and computers to low-income families.

The program, called Internet Essentials, will “provide low-cost access to the Internet and affordable computers, as well as digital literacy training to families with children who are eligible to receive free lunches under the National School Lunch Program,” according to the company’s blog.

Sammy 05:51 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Town OKs Sewage Treatment Plant Expansion
Dick Myers ― The Bay Net

The Commissioners of Leonardtown have given the go ahead for an expansion of the town’s sewage treatment plant. The approval at Monday’s town meeting paves the way for an expansion of the plant from 680,000 gallons per day to 940,000 gallons per day and the addition of Enhanced Nutrient Removal (ENR).

The estimated cost is $20 million, with funding from the state’s Chesapeake Bay Restoration Program for existing conditions and ENR and the balance from impact fees paid by developers for new construction. Estimated completion of the project is expected in 2014, according to the town consulting engineer H. Jeff Sturdevant of Bowie-based Stearns & Wheeler.

Sammy 05:48 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Hughesville 12U Orioles Win Big on the Road
The Bay Net

Hughesville Orioles were at it yet again this past weekend competing against 16 teams on the east coast. Starting off on Friday afternoon Hughesville had a 17-4 win over York Rampage, and then it was on to Friday evening when Hughesville had an 11-6 win over Hershey Chili Dogs. Saturday Morning Hughesville went on to defeat NJ Super 12 with a 6-2 win. Immediately following that game Hughesville went on to defeat Avon Grove Hurricanes with a 14-3 win placing them as 2nd seed of the tournament. Sunday Morning Hughesville played DT Bomber with a 14-6 win placing them into the Semi-Finals against the Smithsburg Lightning. Hughesville yet again defeated that team with a 9-1 win advancing them into the Championship game. Hughesville played Delco Thunder in the Championship defeating them with a 6-1 win. The boys each received a jacket and ring for winning the tournament.

Sammy 05:45 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
U.S. banks get more cash than they want
USA TODAY

The European debt crisis is poised to flood U.S. banks with something they don’t want and can’t use: more money.

Cash held by U.S. banks surged 8.4% to a record $981 billion during the week ending July 27, the Federal Reserve said in an Aug. 5 report. That’s more than triple the amount they had in July 2008, before the collapse of Lehman Bros. almost froze bank-to-bank lending.

Even more money may be deposited with U.S. lenders if investors pull away from European banks amid concern the Greek debt crisis may spread to Italy or beyond, said Brian Smedley, a strategist at Bank of America Merrill Lynch in New York. Those funds may not be so welcome: With few opportunities to lend them out profitably, U.S. firms may have to slap fees on depositors to keep returns from eroding.

Sammy 05:41 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
PSC wants answers from utilities on power cuts
Gazette

Four public utilities in Maryland, including Pepco, are under orders to report details of what happened when they cut customers’ electricity to cope with high user demand during the height of a heat wave last month.

The Public Service Commission issued its order Friday to Pepco, Delmarva Power, Baltimore Gas and Electric and Southern Maryland Electric Cooperative Inc. regarding their performance July 22.

The order comes two weeks after thousands of BGE customers who enrolled in that utility’s voluntary Peak Rewards program called the utility to complain their air-conditioning had been cycled off too long during the heat wave.

Sammy 05:38 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
West Virginia town weighs water quality vs. corporate gifts
Daily Record

Mayor Lucille Blum and the other elected leaders of New Martinsville thought they were doing a good thing when they banned Marcellus shale gas drilling in their small town on the Ohio River. The unanimous vote had only one purpose, Blum said — protecting water wells from a potential threat.
[...]
Gas industry workers packed a council meeting to object, the president of the West Virginia Independent Oil & Gas Association threatened to take its business elsewhere, and Chesapeake Appalachia followed up with a letter urging council to reconsider.
[...]
Last month, Chesapeake withdrew a promised $30,000 gift for band instruments at Wellsburg Middle School.

“As a publicly traded company with many stakeholders, we must direct our expenses and philanthropy to communities that will work with us, not against us,” spokeswoman Stacey Brodak said, adding that Chesapeake will continue to work with others in the industry to oppose municipal bans. “We do not have to choose between the environment or the economics,” she says. “We are benefiting both.”

Sammy 05:33 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Fed gets its chance to stimulate economy
Daily Record

When it meets Tuesday, the Federal Reserve could signal what it can or will do to help the nation avoid another recession.

Since the Fed last met in June, Standard & Poor’s has downgraded long-term U.S. debt, stock markets have plunged, Europe has struggled to contain its debt crisis and a range of indicators have shown the U.S. economy struggling to grow.

Some economists say the Fed might offer a clearer indication of how long it intends to keep long-term interest rates at record lows. More explicit language on interest-rate policy might boost investors’ confidence at a dangerous moment for the global economy. But economists don’t expect the Fed to hint at another round of Treasury bond purchases.

Sammy 05:32 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
Teachers union rejects pension commission proposals
Len Lazarick ― Daily Record

The state teachers union is rejecting most of the final recommendations of the special pension commission, particularly its proposal to shift half the funding of pensions onto county school boards or governments.

In a strong letter to the governor and legislative leaders, the union also wants county governments to be forced to fully fund school budgets and to give them authority to raise more taxes or disregard local tax caps.

Sammy 05:29 AM | (0) Comments | Email this post | Permalink
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