Print This Post The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago in Daily Dose, Featured, Foreclosure, News The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Foreclosure Filings Foreclosures Maryland RealtyTrac 2014-11-12 Brian Honea Share Save About Author: Brian Honea Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Related Articles Brian Honea’s writing and editing career spans nearly two decades across many forms of media. He served as sports editor for two suburban newspaper chains in the DFW area and has freelanced for such publications as the Yahoo! Contributor Network, Dallas Home Improvement magazine, and the Dallas Morning News. He has written four non-fiction sports books, the latest of which, The Life of Coach Chuck Curtis, was published by the TCU Press in December 2014. A lifelong Texan, Brian received his master’s degree from Amberton University in Garland. Home / Daily Dose / Maryland Overtakes Florida for Nation’s Highest Foreclosure Rate Previous: President to Nominate Investment Banker for Treasury’s Senior Domestic Finance Position Next: Foreclosure Filings See Largest Monthly Increase In Four Years Tagged with: Foreclosure Filings Foreclosures Maryland RealtyTrac Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Maryland Overtakes Florida for Nation’s Highest Foreclosure Rate Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago A surge in foreclosure activity for Maryland in October pushed the state into the top spot among states with the highest foreclosure rate in the nation, according to RealtyTrac’s October 2014 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report released Thursday.Maryland overtook Florida, which had held the number one position for 12 consecutive months, according to RealtyTrac. Before October, the last time Florida did not have the nation’s highest foreclosure rate for a month was in September 2013, when Nevada held the top spot.Foreclosure filings, which include default notices, scheduled auctions, and bank repossessions (REOs), totaled 5,943 for Maryland in October (one in every 400 residential housing units), an increase of 68 percent from September and 30 percent from October 2013. It was the highest number of foreclosure filings for the Old Line State for a single month since July 2010, a total of 51 months.All three phases of the foreclosure process jumped up year-over-year in Maryland in October: foreclosure starts rose by 4 percent, scheduled foreclosure auctions increased by 12 percent, and REOs skyrocketed by 190 percent, according to RealtyTrac.Foreclosure activity declined in Florida in October on a year-over-year basis for the 15th consecutive month, according to RealtyTrac. Month-over-month, foreclosure activity in the Sunshine State declined by 2 percent. One in every 444 residential properties in Florida had a foreclosure filing in October, giving it the second-highest rate among states.Nevada had the nation’s third-highest foreclosure rate in October with one for every 596 residential properties, according to RealtyTrac. Foreclosure activity in the Silver State was up 34 percent from September but down 31 percent from October 2013. In Ohio, foreclosure filings increased by 51 percent from September to October, ranking the Buckeye State fourth with one foreclosure filing for every 674 housing units. Even with the significant month-over-month increase, foreclosure activity in Ohio was down by 22 percent from October 2013.In Illinois, foreclosure filings increased by 11 percent from September to October but like Ohio, they declined by 22 percent year-over-year. The Prairie State’s foreclosure rate of one for every 712 housing units was the fifth highest rate in the U.S. for October, according to RealtyTrac.Rounding out the top 10 for the highest foreclosure rate among states in October, according to RealtyTrac, were Delaware (sixth, 1:752), Indiana (seventh, 1:762), South Carolina (eighth, 1:814), New Jersey (ninth, 1:878) and Georgia (10th, 1:899).Maryland’s spike in foreclosures can be attributed to the enormous year-over-year increases in October for two of the state’s largest metro areas. In Baltimore, foreclosure completions surged by 212 percent and in Hagerstown-Martinsburg, foreclosure completions saw a 178 increase, according to RealtyTrac. Baltimore had the fifth-highest foreclosure rate in the U.S. among metropolitan areas with a population of more than 200,000, with one foreclosure filing for every 435 housing units, according to RealtyTrac. The metro areas with the four highest foreclosure rates were all in Florida.Baltimore’s foreclosure rate of 1:435 was the third-highest among the nation’s top 20 most populated metro areas. The top two were Miami and Tampa. November 12, 2014 1,664 Views The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Sign up for DS News Daily Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Subscribe
Radio NZ News 17 October 2014A Coroner says Child Youth and Family should not cut troubled teenagers adrift when they turn 17.Ian Smith made the comments while investigating the death of Jack Lindsay, who died in 2012 when he took several medicines which proved toxic because he was epileptic.The coroner said Mr Lindsay was periodically under the care of Child Youth and Family but fell out of its jurisdiction when he turned 17.He continued to get some support but the coroner said more help was needed.Ian Smith said the case mirrors others he has dealt with where people under CYF care feel cut adrift once they turn 17.http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/national/257157/lack-of-older-teen-support-criticised
If evolution is true, the number of species coming and going should track the number of rock layers in which they are fossilized, at least roughly. The more sediments per unit time, the more new genera should arise within them. Shanan E. Peters (U of Michigan) decided to test this “novel” approach with marine fossils (the most abundant in the fossil record) over most of the geologic column, from Cambrian to Pliocene, and did indeed find a correlation. He wrote his conclusions in PNAS.1 Peters compared two databases: one that counted genera of marine organisms in the worldwide geologic column, and one that counted rock sections in the geologic column in the USA. (A section is a record of continuous sedimentation bounded by gaps, or unconformities.) First, he graphed genus richness against rock quantity; these measurements correlated well until the Cretaceous, when they diverged sharply. The divergence, he explained, could have been a statistical artifact of sampling called the “pull of the recent”; i.e., the tendency for recent epochs to be better represented than ancient ones. That’s OK, he explained; one would expect the correlations to be seen better at macro rather than micro scales. Second, he graphed first and last appearances of genera against the bottoms and tops of rock sections. These correlated fairly well for extinctions (r=0.75), but not as well for originations of genera (r=0.54 or less). “This finding means,” he tells us, “that the average longevity of a genus in the fossil record is comparable with the average duration of a sedimentary section. In fact, the entire frequency distribution of genus longevities is remarkably similar to that of section durations.” Third, he compared genus turnover with section turnover and also found similar positive correlation, though with some data points as prominent outliers. In his concluding discussion, he tried to explain what these correlations mean.These results demonstrate that the temporal distribution of genus first and last occurrences in the marine animal fossil record is intimately related to the temporal continuity and quantity of sedimentary rock. Determining why this result is the case is more challenging than demonstrating that it is so. (Emphasis added in all quotes.)Since the two databases (genus counts and section counts) were presumed “as independent as two data sets that share the same timescale could possibly be,” he felt the correlations, rough as they were, indicated something significant. Either the results were artifacts of preservation bias (the luck of the fossilization process), or had a common-cause relationship. The former, he argued, seems unlikely: “Thus, if stratigraphic correlation and the shared timescale are the only reasons for statistical similarity, then virtually all temporal patterns derived from the geologic record must be little more than methodological artifacts of binning and correlation. This possibility seems extremely unlikely (although quantifying the magnitudes of the statistical contributions of these factors is very important).” That being agreed, which explanation – selection bias or common cause – best explains the data?Assuming that macroevolutionary patterns derived from genus first and last occurrences have the potential to be meaningful in a biological sense, the task then becomes to explain why patterns in the genus fossil record are closely duplicated by analogous patterns in the sedimentary rock record. As discussed above, there are two possibilities, (i) preservation bias and (ii) shared forcing mechanisms (common cause).He showed that the latter possibility makes better predictions, but does admit one caveat: “because only unconformity and rock quantity biases are being measured here, it is possible that facies biases and/or asymmetries in environmental preservation within sedimentary sequences are causing the stronger section-genus extinction correlation”; i.e., the beginning and end of the story don’t always reveal what happened in the middle. Nevertheless, he felt confident that taxonomists and geologists had not conspired to bias the conclusions: “it seems unlikely that the work of hundreds of taxonomists has been so nonrandom as to render the survivorship patterns of >32,000 genera from across the tree of life little more than a quantification of the structure of the sedimentary rock record.” Why, however, would the genus extinction count correlate with the end of the rock section better than the origination count correlate with the beginning? Aha, the common-cause hypothesis predicted it would. The answer is in the way evolution works:Under the common-cause hypothesis, however, genera are expected to originate early in a sedimentary basin’s history as new habitats and environments expand and to go extinct abruptly when environmental changes eliminate the basin environments altogether. Thus, similar average durations for sections and genera as well as corresponding peaks and troughs in rates of origination and extinction are expected. Interestingly, the common-cause hypothesis also predicts that the genus-section extinction correlation should be stronger than the genus-section origination correlation because genus extinction can match the timing of rapid environmental shifts that result in section truncation, whereas genus origination may not be capable of responding instantly to the macroevolutionary opportunities afforded by basin expansion. This possibility is sensitive to choice of timescale, but it is supported by analyses that find less empirical support for pulsed genus origination [i.e., punctuated equilibria] than for pulsed genus extinction at the same level of temporal resolution in the Phanerozoic.The remainder of Peters’ discussion delved into the meaning of these correlations for theories of environmental forcing of macroevolution and timing of mass extinctions. He favored gradualism over saltation for origination of species, and discounted the need for major catastrophes to explain extinction rates. He defended the challenging concept that “much of the macroevolutionary history of marine animals is driven by processes related to the formation and destruction of sedimentary basins.” If some evolutionists believe that extinctions and explosions of biological diversity can be forced by a meteorite impact, for instance, why not consider the possibility that macroevolutionary change can also be forced by slower geological changes? Thus, “it would seem prudent to revisit some of the classic unifying hypotheses that are grounded in the effects of continually operating processes and to reevaluate seriously the extent to which unusual or episodic events are required to explain the macroevolutionary history of marine animals.” In conclusion, he admitted that more work will need to be done to rule out taxonomic biases. These “remain a potential obfuscator of macroevolutionary patterns in all global taxonomic databases,” he says; though he has shown some correlation, he is not trying to push his point too far. “Further quantifying the relationships between the large-scale temporal and spatial structure of the geologic record and the distribution of fossil occurrences within this structure will be important,” he ended, “in overcoming persistent sampling biases and in testing the extent to which common-cause mechanisms have dominated the macroevolutionary history of marine animals.”1Shanan E. Peters, “Geological constraints on the macroevolutionary history of marine animals, “ Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences USA, August 30, 2005, vol. 102, no. 35, 12326-12331, published online before print August 16, 2005, 10.1073/pnas.0502616102.This lengthy entry is exhibited here to show how evolutionists can fool themselves into thinking the observations support Charlie’s tall tale. In the first place, he used evolutionary assumptions to calibrate evolutionary assumptions: the “common timescale” of both databases is the geologic column, a theoretical arrangement of global sediments built on the assumption of evolution and millions of years. This is reminiscent of the joke about the church bell ringer who set his watch by the clock tower on the parliament building, only to find out that the clock tower maintenance man set his clock by the church bell. Second, the correlations are only marginally significant. His charts show severe outliers. Sometimes the anomalous data points have an important story to tell. Third, his use of gap-bound rock sections only concentrates on the beginning and ending of continuously-deposited sediments. In the old Dr. Seuss book The Cat in the Hat, the first and last pages of the book, showing the children contentedly at ease in a clean living room, belies all the chaos and commotion that occurred in the middle. Last, Peters trusted in the “if you build it, they will come” theory of evolution. He didn’t explain how new genera of marine organisms would “emerge” when the sea level rose or fell; he just assumed that whenever organisms are given a safe haven, presto! macroevolution happens. In short, the evolutionary story rigged, controlled, operated and guaranteed the outcome of the entire analysis. Evolution is a self-fulfilling prophecy. For a side dish, consider what EurekAlert recently reported: most scientific papers are wrong. Whether from financial interest, prejudice, unseen biases, conflict of interest, peer pressure or the desire to prove relationships that don’t exist (false positives), “There is increasing concern that in modern research, false findings may be the majority or even the vast majority of published research claims.” Iain Murray, writing for Competitive Enterprise Institute, reflected on what this means – much authoritative-sounding science talk is inconclusive and, frankly, politically or selfishly motivated. The paper by Peters, reviewed here, fits the description. For all its graphs and jargon, it is trying to prove something that isn’t necessarily true, built on a bias for a certain brand of Darwinian evolution. Even if there were a correlation between sediment counts and genus counts, could there be a non-evolutionary explanation? Naturally. In a flood scenario, for instance, more genera are likely to be buried in sediments corresponding to the volume of the material. The first appearance of a genus would either represent the chance placement in the layers or a mechanical artifact of the burial process, such as liquefaction or hydrodynamic sorting. Extinction would occur, but not origination by evolution. No great time periods need transpire. Since Peters’ radar screen was not tuned to this possibility, he missed it.(Visited 29 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0
By Mduduzi MalingaBrand South Africa in collaboration with the Eastern Cape Department of Transport, Tourism and National Heritage Council hosted the second annual Eastern Cape SUV Challenge Tour from the 31 October – 3 November 2019. The challenge kicked off in Port Elizabeth, through Makhanda and Hamburg, making a stop at Mngqesha Great Place, then proceeded to East London, Butterworth, and Mqhekezweni and ended up at Coffee Bay.The event was part of a road-safety campaign, which not only connects communities, but is also an effective tool that creates awareness on profiling and promoting the Eastern Cape as a tourist and investment destination. Over 70 vehicles took part in the 500km expedition through the Eastern Cape, visiting towns, villages, schools and communities, relaying the message of road safety.This is in line with Brand South Africa’s mandate to promote road safety to empower rural communities to play their part through encouraging road to respect the rules and regulations on our roads.“The SUV challenge was instrumental in bringing together various stakeholders from government, universities and corporate South Africa, to affirm their commitment to road safety, as well as showcasing the heritage and tourism features of the province. These elements feed into the attractiveness of the South African Nation Brand. The tour illustrated the effectiveness of collaboration across sectors,’’ said Ms Toni Gumede, Strategic Relationship Manager for government at Brand South Africa.Event organizer, Siya Mbete said: “Our intention is to address the issue of road carnage but at the same time we want to assist learners to make informed choices as they go into universities and colleges.”Brand South Africa would like to thank Nissan South Africa, the Eastern Cape Department of Transport, Tourism and the National Heritage Council for playing their part in promoting the Nation Brand.
Water trucks for the wealthy“The very rich,” as F. Scott Fitzgerald wrote, “are different from you and me,” and that apparently holds true even in a severe drought.As Ann Louise Bardach reports at Politico, California’s wealthiest neighborhoods are managing to stay lush even while most of the state goes dry.In Montecito, an upscale community near Santa Barbara, well-heeled residents like Oprah Winfrey pay to have water brought in on 5,000-gallon tankers. “These days, tankers can be seen barreling down Montecito’s narrow country roads day and night, ferrying up to 5,000 gallons of H20 to some of the world’s richest and thirstiest folks,” Bardach writes.This follows the start of water rationing in February — no new homes, no new swimming pools, and no refilling of existing pools with town water. The town has cut its water consumption by a whopping 48%, but some residents are paying hefty fines for using too much water, and others are bringing in the trucks.There’s one other unconventional solution to lawns that turn brown from a lack of water: hire a painter. As The National Journal reports, business is brisk for lawn painters who apply a coat of paint to make lawns look lush again. The treatment is said to be effective for as long as six months. Old measures still work, but new ideas are being triedWater shortages are affecting the region in many ways. In some areas, drinking water supplies are dangerously low. Farmers are hiring well-drillers to tap new groundwater supplies, prompting alarmed state lawmakers to impose new controls. Air quality is declining in the Los Angeles basin. Water levels in Lake Mead are plummeting, threatening drinking water supplies for Las Vegas and turning marinas into parched prairies.All the conventional water-saving strategies still apply: low-flow shower heads and faucets, hot-water circulation that eliminates the wait for hot water, low-flow or composting toilets, and more efficient appliances. Western communities also are responding by instituting a number of other conservation measures, everything from better water meters to incentives for people who tear out their lawns. Here’s a look at what’s being done. New pricing strategies can lower water useIn the San Francisco Bay Area, an organization known as SPUR (originally the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association) earlier this year listed a number of steps that cut water use, including subsidized home audits, rebates for efficient appliances and plumbing fixtures, landscaping that uses less water, and lawn-removal incentives.Among the programs that SPUR’s report highlighted was tiered water pricing. “The price of water can create a strong incentive to conserve, and pricing water consumption through tiers can be one of the most effective ways to reduce demand,” the report said.In a tiered system, customers pay one rate for an initial amount of water. If they exceed that limit, they pay a higher rate and, depending on the particulars of the system, may run into further rate hikes the more water they use. Tiered rate structures leave decisions of how much water to use in the hands of consumers, but also give them a financial incentive to use less.SPUR said that a similar approach, called water budgeting, assigns a water limit to a household based on such factors as the number of people living in the house or the size of the yard and type of vegetation. If the household goes over its budget, it pays higher rates. Water budgets, however, are complicated, which has limited the number of communities putting them in place.Another policy strategy, SPUR says, is to “decouple” utility sales from overall profits. Under conventional pricing structures, when customers use less water, the utility earns less money, a disincentive to encourage conservation (this is exactly the same situation many electric utilities have found themselves in as more homeowners install photovoltaic (PV) panels on their roofs).With decoupling, however, a private utility is reimbursed for lost revenue if it does not reach sales goals, SPUR says, but must all return excess revenues to its clients if it goes over its goals. This approach, which was first adopted by private California water utilities in 2008, still allows a utility to earn a “modest” profit for investors. Limiting how much water is used for landscapingIn the Coachella Valley, California, region east of Los Angeles, The Desert Sun reports, new housing developments must include drought-tolerant landscaping and irrigation systems that reduce water consumption.Landscaping is a major consumer of water. The Sun reports that overall water use averages 700 gallons per person per day, two thirds of which is used outdoors. Eliminating a single square foot of grass in favor of desert landscaping saves between 50 and 60 gallons of water.KB Home, a Los Angeles-based developer, last year built a house in Lancaster that uses recycled drain water from sinks and showers to water plants outside. The system can save 150,000 gallons of water per year over a more typical home, the newspaper said.As early as 2009, the Coachella Valley Water Efficient Landscape ordinance imposed a number of rules aimed at limiting water use, including guidelines for desert plants, water-saving irrigation systems, and even turf on new golf courses. Officials said the ordinance was 29% more efficient than state rules passed in 2006.A number of cities, including Palm Springs, offer financial assistance to homeowners and homeowner associations to replace grass with drought-tolerant landscaping. In Palm Springs, a total of 52,500 square feet of grass has been removed since 2011, saving roughly 2.9 million gallons of water, The Sun said. Los Angeles has paid homeowners more than $1 million since 2009 to get rid of their lawns, and in Austin, Texas, police are on the lookout for anyone running lawn sprinklers before sunset. The fine is $475.In Las Vegas, where turf replacement programs have been in place for a number of years, the Southern Nevada Water Authority’s Water Smart Landscape Rebate gives customers $1.50 for every square foot of grass that’s replaced with desert landscaping, up to 5,000 square feet per property per year. Better water meters and improved software also helpSPUR’s report details two other approaches that have been used with success in parts of the state. One of them is a device that allows customers to get accurate real-time information on how much water they’re using without expensive plumbing upgrades or meter replacement. The gizmo, called The Barnacle, attaches to an existing water meter. It captures data in 10-second intervals and transmits the data via a cellular network.SPUR said that the device is useful in old buildings where installing new meters would cost too much money. According to the developer, the device has cut water consumption by as much as 26% in pilot studies.A device called Unmeasured-Flow Reducer is designed to measure water flows too small for ordinary meters to detect.Getting better information into the hands of water users is the idea behind software called WaterSmart. Customers get access to reports on consumption as well as recommendations for saving water via a web portal. WaterSmart has been adopted by the East Bay Municipal Utility district and the city of Palo Alto. In California and other parts of the West, a prolonged drought is severely taxing water supplies and prompting state and local governments to push for strict conservation. Water conservation has been a longstanding part of the green-building credo, but until fairly recently was more of an option than a necessity.In February, University of California professor B. Lynn Ingram told The New York Times that the state was on track for having the worst drought in 500 years. Total rainfall in Los Angeles between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2014 was less than 12 inches, the driest such period on record. (Compare that to parts of the East: Portland, Maine, got 6.4 inches of rain in a single day in August, more than fell on Los Angeles in the most recent July-to-June period.)Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency in January and urged a drop in water consumption of 20%. The State Water Resources Board set a $500 fine for wasting water.