Grateful for response from National Grid

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion We have been experiencing our lights dimming, on a frequent basis, and decided to call National Grid on Oct. 31.Within one hour, a serviceman from National Grid was at our door. He did a thorough exam of our electrical box inside and conducted a similar search on the outdoor connections.The very next day, Ron Cammie and Eric Sapone were at my house doing a field test and discovered that the line coming to the house had been invaded by the squirrels. Although it had been patched before, they requested a new line be installed. And it was, the very next day, just before the big storm the following day.On Nov. 1, both Ron and Eric were here to follow up and make sure everything was working to my satisfaction. I just couldn’t get over the quick service of all three service departments of National Grid. My hat’s off to those in charge and especially to those who rendered the service with speed and were able to accurately fix the problem.Peter V. Russo Sr.GlenvilleMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censuslast_img read more

Politicians must act to impeach Trump

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionI wonder how much longer this country has to suffer the embarrassment of a president named Donald Trump. Even the people who actually voted for him have got to be disgusted. I don’t understand how the Republicans and Democrats can’t put their heads together and get rid of a man who has no humility or common sense leadership. He is supposed to be a man of the people. He does not paint the picture of the United States I know. We are a country of immigrants. That is how we became citizens of the United States. We left our homelands to get away from all the ideals and oppression that Trump represents. Come on elected politicians, do the job we are paying you for and impeach Mr. Trump.Marty ShantyCharltonMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsPolice: Schenectady woman tried to take car in Clifton Park hours after arrest, release in prior the…EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationlast_img read more

Letters to the Editor for Wednesday, Jan. 1

first_imgCategories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionPut Lady Liberty back where she belongsI know that this is the holiday season, but when I talk about the Statue of Liberty, it is a right subject for any time of the year. She takes whatever weather that is sent her way, and still stands there, tall.In one day last week, I had the occasion to go by Gateway (Liberty) Park, twice. I saw the island from two angles. It is a beautiful looking park, very level, and colorful. I noticed that it could stand a little symbol that would stand out and add to the area.Wait a minute. What happened to that beautiful statue that stood there for over 50 years?That would really add to the area and be very recognizable for a lot of people, like me, that go by the park daily. I took a ride over Erie Boulevard and low and behold, I found her. She looked so lonely and dirty.There was no one around to talk to her because you cannot get to her. It is dangerous to stop or walk by her. With her torch and arm in the air, she seems to be calling us to help her get back home where she belongs.I still think the Statue of Liberty belongs in her rightful place, in Liberty (Gateway) Park, and I am sure that there may be a surplus in this year’s budget to move her back.James A. WilsonSchenectadyLet Thruway drivers pay tolls themselvesI am writing to comment on the Dec. 26 Gazette Editorial “Thruway hike takes a heavy toll.”Using the Thruway or any toll highway is the choice of the driver. I do not support the idea that every vehicle be equipped with E-ZPass. If I choose to drive on non-toll roads, I don’t think I should be required to pay for an E-ZPass account.Your suggestion that “In time, the state might even consider making E-ZPass a condition of vehicle registration or renewal” is totally inappropriate. How do you support telling people what roads to travel?Why should we consider paying for roads we do not travel? Government does not have the authority to make that decision. Talk about taxation without representation.Barbara HeiseSchenectadyMore from The Daily Gazette:Foss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homeslast_img read more

DTC strategy swells UK and European profits

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

Buyers are in love with Shakespeare’s theatre

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

The magnetic North

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

‘Don’t sacrifice lives’: Doubts grow in Japan over Tokyo Olympics

Japan has seen relatively few cases, with 814 testing positive and 24 dead. But some people on the streets of Tokyo voiced concern for the fans that would pour in from abroad.Koki Miura, a 27-year-old employee at an internet company, told AFP: “To be honest, even if Japan overcomes this crisis, we wouldn’t receive visitors from the world. I think we’d better not hold it.””We cannot sacrifice people’s lives for it,” added Miura, who said the Games should be postponed — if not cancelled outright. Public opinion in Japan appears to be moving against the Games. A poll for public broadcaster NHK taken March 6-9 suggested 45 percent were opposed to going ahead as planned, with 40 percent in favor. Doubts are growing in Japan about the Tokyo Olympics, with growing opposition to holding them as scheduled and some urging officials not to risk lives by pressing ahead during the coronavirus emergency.Officials like Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and International Olympic Committee chief Thomas Bach have repeatedly insisted preparations should continue to light the Olympic flame on July 24.But with events from the Premier League to NBA basketball scrapped, and Japanese sport also at a standstill, even US President Donald Trump has suggested putting the Olympics on hold. Tokyo governor Yuriko Koike has said it is “unthinkable” to cancel the Olympics but the decision rests with the IOC, which is planning emergency talks with international sports federations over the virus on Tuesday, according to an IOC source.Bach has stressed the IOC will follow World Health Organization recommendations regarding a possible postponement. But he has also acknowledged that the cancellation of qualifying events was already posing “serious problems”.At the beginning of March, Bach said the IOC would show “flexibility” regarding the qualifications for the Tokyo and encouraged “all athletes to continue to prepare” for the Games.Masao Sugawara, a 90-year-old pensioner, told AFP: “Personally, I think it would be safer to postpone the Olympics for a year, just as President Trump said. Look at the panic.” “Of course it would be disappointing, though,” he admitted.Manfred Otto, 45, a half-Japanese, half-German lawyer, said he was “worried” about the Games and stressed: “We really need to be careful.””If the outbreak does not get controlled by June or July, I think we should postpone it,” said Otto.The betting odds are increasingly shifting towards the opening ceremony not taking place on July 24. Bookmaker Paddy Power is offering 4-1 against the Games opening on time.This comes as the virus — which has killed 6,400 people worldwide — shreds the international sporting calendar, with almost no elite sporting action taking place last weekend.Scrapping the Olympics would be a heartbreaking decision for Tokyo residents who rushed to buy tickets, and authorities whose preparations have won widespread praise — with the majority of venues ready well ahead of schedule.Hisaya Suzuki, 47, said he had tickets to see baseball, Japan’s most popular sport.”It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, so I really wanted to take my son,” he said, but added: “If there will be negative consequences, it may be wiser to pause it (the Games).”Sugawara said the magnitude of the coronavirus trumped sporting considerations.”I am 90 years old. Except for wartime, I have never felt so worried.” Topics : read more

SMRC survey finds local govts rated higher for COVID-19 response than central govt

first_imgThe survey also showed that respondents across all age groups, education levels and incomes felt that provincial administrations had generally responded more quickly to the COVID-19 outbreak than the central government.In terms of the central government’s overall performance by occupation, 65 percent of ride-hailing ojek (motorcycle taxi) drivers felt that it had not responded quickly, followed by the very poor (65 percent) and wage workers (45 percent).The survey also found that 67 percent of all respondents had experienced worsening personal finances following the outbreak’s emergence – slightly more than double the 38 percent that was reported in a similar survey two weeks ago.Around 70 percent of respondents across all provinces reported a slump in income after the outbreak emerged in the country. Of this figure, 33 percent – or 25 percent of all respondents –said they could no longer meet their basic needs without taking out a loan.Meanwhile, 15 percent of all respondents said that their savings had declined to levels that could sustain them for a week at most, while another 15 percent said that they had only enough savings to sustain them for a month at most.Read also: Jakarta’s poor at risk as city drags feet on COVID-19 social assistanceThe SMRC survey found that low-income workers, especially those on daily wages, were the group most affected financially during the large-scale social restrictions (PSBB). It also said that this group had the greatest potential of violating the PSBB policy in order to make a living and survive financially during the outbreak.The pollster also found that 34 to 37 percent of respondents objected to banning ojek from transporting passengers. Applying this percentage to the population would indicate that around 60 million Indonesians might violate the PSBB.The report suggested that the government immediately offer financial assistance for these vulnerable groups through subsidies and other forms of aid to ensure the enforcement of the PSBB to “flatten the curve” of COVID-19 transmission.Topics : The results of a recent survey suggests that the public believes that the central government has been slower at responding to the outbreak of COVID-19 in the country than regional administrations.The telephone survey on COVID-19 pandemic, which Saiful Mujani Research & Consulting (SMRC) conducted between April 9 and 12, involved 2,230 respondents aged 17 and above across Indonesia.The majority of respondents (59 percent), felt that provincial administrations had responded quickly in implementing COVID-19 prevention and control measures. In a separate section regarding the central government’s response, only 52 percent of respondents felt that it had responded quickly. The survey also revealed that 61 percent of all respondents were satisfied with the performance of municipal and regency administrations in managing the outbreak. In the section on COVID-19 response at the district and village levels, 65 percent of respondents felt that lower-level administrations had responded quickly.The majority of respondents in the X provinces surveyed across the nation, excepting those in South Sulawesi and Banten, felt that the central government had responded more slowly than their provincial administrations. However, respondents in South Sulawesi and Banten generally felt that the central government had responded to the outbreak more quickly or just as fast as their provincial governments.Respondents in Bali and East Nusa Tenggara topped the survey at 82 percent each in terms of crediting their provincial administrations with responding more quickly than the government. They were followed by respondents in Central Java (73 percent), Maluku and Papua (69 percent each), East Java (68 percent) and Jakarta (62 percent).Read also: ‘Puskesmas’ move up to COVID-19 front lines amid overburdened health systemlast_img read more

Putin eases Russia’s stay-at-home orders as cases soar

first_imgThe Kremlin introduced the measures in late March, saying Russians not working in essential jobs would have to stay at home but still receive their salaries as part of sweeping efforts to contain the virus.The move brought uncertainty to the economy already grappling with low oil prices, with business owners struggling to pay full salaries to employees while shutting their doors to customers.”Starting from tomorrow, May 12, the national period of non-working days will be over for all sectors of the economy,” Putin said during a meeting with officials responsible for the country’s virus response.The president said that Russia’s regions, which were given leeway to introduce different anti-virus measures, would be able to keep in place any restrictions necessary to contain the pandemic. President Vladimir Putin on Monday said stay-at-home orders for most workers in Russia would be eased this week even as the country registered a record increase in new coronavirus infections.With more than 220,000 confirmed cases and a steady surge of more than 10,000 new coronavirus cases every day, Russia now ranks fourth in a global tally of total infections after the United States, Spain and Britain.Despite virus figures that suggest the pandemic in Russia shows no sign of slowing, Putin announced that the country’s “non-working” period to slow the pandemic would end on Tuesday. ‘Strict demands’ Health officials Monday said Russia has a total of 221,344 coronavirus infections, with around half of the total cases in the capital.Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin last week extended a lockdown in the capital until the end of May and ordered residents to wear masks and gloves on public transport.Yet Sobyanin has also said that some industries and construction sites can begin work this week.Putin on Monday said that Russia had used the self-isolation period to prepare its healthcare system, increasing the amount of hospital beds and saving “many thousands of lives”.This “allows us to begin a gradual lifting of restrictions”, he said.Russia’s reported mortality rate is much lower compared to other European countries hit hard by the pandemic, with 94 new deaths and 2,009 dead from the coronavirus as of Monday. Yet critics have cast doubt on the numbers, accusing the authorities of under-reporting deaths.With the epicenter of the pandemic in and around Moscow, some regions beyond the capital have already begun to relax the restrictions, which have seriously affected the economy.”It is in the interest of all of us for the economy to return to normal quickly,” Putin said, adding that construction, agriculture and energy should be restarted first.”The epidemic and associated restrictions have had a strong impact on the economy and hurt millions of our citizens,” he told officials during the meeting.As people begin going back to work, mass events are still suspended and “strict sanitation demands” must be observed, Putin said.Sparsely-populated Yakutia, Magadan and Yamal lifted restrictions on being outside and allowed the reopening of some businesses, requiring people to self-distance.The pandemic poses a serious political threat to Putin with the president’s approval ratings at historic lows and mass events, including a national ballot and a landmark military parade, cancelled due to the virus.Russia’s neighbors Ukraine and Georgia began to relax restrictions Monday, while Kazakhstan lifted its state of emergency. Topics : The president’s announcement, broadcast on state-run television, comes after Russia registered a record number of daily cases with more than 11,000 people testing positive over the last 24 hours.Officials have said the rise of the daily rate is in part due to aggressive testing, even of those showing no symptoms. The government says it has carried out more than 5.6 million tests and Putin on Monday vowed to double capacity to 300,000 daily tests by mid-May.last_img read more

COVID-19 helps create new normal in online shopping: Survey

first_imgTopics : “E-commerce platforms are receiving a new cohort of consumers during the pandemic which enables such growth,” Redseer Southeast Asia partner Roshan Raj Behera told The Jakarta Post on Monday.He went on to say that around 30 percent of the survey respondents said they were new to online marketplaces, 40 percent of whom said they would keep using e-commerce after the outbreak was over.“Even when the macroeconomic situation still looking bad but the pandemic is under control and there is no second wave, people have hope and are more likely to continue to spend,” Behera said.He added that the number of e-commerce users may decline within the next few weeks as the government began to ease social distancing measures, enabling people to go out including to shop. However, consumers will use e-commerce platforms again in the fourth quarter due to events such as Online Shopping Day (Harbolnas), which falls in December.  Similarly, Redseer Southeast Asia director Marigank Gutgutia said the fourth quarter was very important to Indonesian e-commerce as more online shopping events would be held to attract new users, which rolled out to the first quarter of 2020.“Our interviews with consumers reveal that there are also a lot of new consumers in groceries e-commerce,” he said, adding that more than half of the respondents had tried an e-groceries platform during the pandemic.Homegrown e-groceries marketplaces have been thriving since the COVID-19 outbreak in March as people avoid shopping in supermarkets.Gutgutia went on to say that electronics had been a key growth contributor across e-commerce platforms, but during the first quarter of 2020 categories such as beauty, fashion and personal care had been on the rise.Redseer forecast that household appliances and personal care products were expected to be the leading growth categories over the short to medium term driven by the impact of COVID-19.It further calculated that e-groceries gross merchandise value (GMV) would grow 400 percent this year, while beauty and personal care would grow 80 percent, fashion 40 percent while electronics would grow 20 percent.“We are also seeing market behavior changes. People usually use online marketplace to buy electronics but now they are buying daily needs such as personal care and food,” said Bukalapak’s display marketing head Anugrah Mardi Honesty during a webinar on Tuesday.He went on to say that in an attempt to leverage the demand and increase profitability, Bukalapak has been partnering with fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) brands.Similarly, unicorn e-commerce firm Tokopedia noted that health and personal care sales had tripled in March and the number of sellers within that category had more than doubled in the same month.Tokopedia’s external communication senior lead Ekhel Chandra Wijaya said that health, household supplies and food and beverages had been the top selling categories since March.“Hand sanitizer, vitamins and face masks are definitely the most sought-after health products during the pandemic,” he said.The Redseer survey also showed that 70 percent of online sellers in Indonesia expect the effect of COVID-19 on the industry to last less than two months, or until around July.A similar survey by the Mobile Marketing Association also showed that e-commerce and the FMCG sectors were among the most optimistic about their industry’s ability to recover rapidly from the outbreak.center_img The COVID-19 outbreak, which has disrupted almost all business sectors in the country, has had a positive impact on the e-commerce sector as the virus has created a new normal in online shopping habits, a survey indicates.A recent survey by management consulting company Redseer showed that Indonesia’s e-commerce growth trajectory would remain positive with an expected 50 percent year-on-year growth to reach US$35 billion this year from $23 billion in 2019.The e-Conomy SEA 2019 report by Google, Temasek and Bain & Company even predicted that Indonesia’s internet economy was well on track to cross the $130 billion mark by 2025.last_img read more