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first_imgShares in The Zoopla Property Group (ZPG), which recently acquired energy provider comparison site uSwitch, dropped by 15.9p to 258.7p at the tail end of last week, following an Ofgem investigation into whether two or more companies providing a supporting service for the energy industry breached competition law.Following shareholder and FCA approval, ZPG last week completed its acquisition of uSwitch, the comparison website and lead generation engine for energy and communications switching. But while ZPG said that the deal was designed to reaffirmthe company’s mission to be the most useful resource for consumers and most effective marketing partner for professionals operating within the property industry, the acquisition may actually prove to have been badly timed.The concern for ZPG is that uSwitch, along with MoneySupermarket, has been asked by Ofgem to provide information in relation to an investigation over whether companies supporting the energy industry have broken any rules.Despite the pending investigation, the enlarged ZPG group is now working on developing products which will directly benefit ZPG members by allowing them to source the best gas, electricity, broadband, TV and phone deals in the market and earn fees whilst saving money for their clients.The aim is that over the coming months, ZPG members will benefit from further investments in product and marketing, enhanced consumer engagement and greater insight into their property requirements, a further differentiated and expanded audience and opportunities to generate revenues from saving their clients money.Reflecting on the deal to acquire uSwitch, Alex Chesterman (left), Founder & CEO of ZPG described it as “another important milestone” in his company’s journey to create the “ultimate property market resource, and in the evolution of the property portal.”He added, “Being able to help consumers both find their next home and save money on their household bills is a great fit and we are excited about the new products that we are working on and which will create revenue opportunities for our members.”Despite the controversy, members of ZPG who purchased discounted shares in ZPG as part of the exclusive Member Offer in last June’s Initial public offering (IPO), which have since seen a rather impressive return of over 55 per cent on their investment, are now being offered the opportunity to purchase the same amount of shares on the upcoming IPO anniversary date. The shares are available at the same fixed price of £1.76 per share, which would allow them to score a significant instant profit, based on the current ZPG share price.Mr Chesterman added, “At the time of our IPO last year we were happy to be able to offer our agent members the opportunity to buy shares at a discounted price and become shareholders and were delighted with the take up by our members. Those who took us up on the offer have made a healthy profit and over 90 per cent of them remain members today and are eligible to buy more shares at £1.76 as part of the anniversary offer. It is great that we have been able to reward these members for their loyalty with over £5.5 million over the last year.”Ofgem portals share prices energy and communications switching uSwitch Zoopla ZPG June 11, 2015The NegotiatorWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles 40% of tenants planning a move now that Covid has eased says Nationwide3rd May 2021 Letting agent fined £11,500 over unlicensed rent-to-rent HMO3rd May 2021 BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 Home » News » Zoopla share prices dip after Ofgem probe previous nextRegulation & LawZoopla share prices dip after Ofgem probeZoopla’s £160 million acquisition of uSwitch, which was only completed last week, may have caused investor concern.11th June 20150558 Viewslast_img read more


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first_imgDescription/Job SummaryOverview of position: Summary of position’sresponsibilitiesAn (title) is responsible for the:1. Adjunct instructors are hired to instruct students in theclinical/laboratory/classroom setting and must be knowledgeable intheir subject matter as well have training and experience2. Based upon master syllabus, design & teach assignedclass or clinic session(s), levering digital content and multimediasources3. Complete required reports on student progress; provideremediate to students as necessary4. Assist in maintenance of the EMS patient care skillslab5. Assist students in preparing for national certificationexamsEmployees in this classification receive supervision fromAssociate Dean, Health Professions.Required QualificationsMinimum Qualifications :AAS Degree from an accredited institution in Paramedicine orrelated health professions disciplineCurrent and active national certification and Maryland licensedparamedicFour years of experience providing direct patient care inemergency medical servicesPreferred QualificationsPreferred Qualifications:Bachelor’s degree or higher in any disciplineMICRB [Maryland Instructor Certification Review Board]certificationKnowledge of the national EMS education standards andcontentlast_img read more


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first_img Foch said he had served England as if she were his own country. In our final year of First World War centenary commemorations, it is right that we mark the appointment of Marshal Foch so future generations remember the pivotal role he played in the outcome of the war. The decision to coordinate military operations under Foch’s leadership was crucial. It united the Allied forces who then fought as one to victory and peace in November 1918. The descendants of Field Marshal Haig and Marshal Foch joined Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and dignitaries from the UK and France at a ceremony dedicated to Ferdinand Foch.His appointment marked the first time the Allied forces fought under one strategic commander and was a significant factor in the successful coordinated defence against the German Spring Offensive and the gains made by the Allies in the summer of 1918.Attendees laid wreaths to honour Marshal Foch at the statue honouring him in Lower Grosvenor Gardens, Victoria, London.Matt Hancock, Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, said:center_img On 26 March, 1918, Marshal Foch was appointed Supreme Allied Commander on the Western Front. This was in response to the start of the German Spring Offensive, which pushed the Allies back to their 1914 lines.This event is the first in the Government’s 2018 programme that will help people understand how the nature of the war changed during the summer of 1918 and led to the signing of the Armistice on 11 November. The appointment of Marshal Foch as Supreme Allied Commander and the strategic leadership he brought were instrumental to the Allies’ success at the Battle of Amiens and the subsequent Hundred Days Offensive.Read the Order of Service.Matt Hancock speaks at Marshal Foch commemorationlast_img read more


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first_imgWhen you discuss venues that are bucket list places to travel to and see a show, George, WA’s The Gorge Amphitheatre is arguably at the top of the list. The venue has hosted such legendary acts as Phish, Pearl Jam, Dave Matthews Band, and Bob Dylan, along with festivals like the H.O.R.D.E. Festival, Rock The Bells, Sasquatch!, and so much more. With its breathtakingly majestic views overlooking the Columbia River, along with panoramic sight lines of the gorge cliffs and valleys, just the thought of seeing one of your favorite bands put on an epic performance is enough to give you the chills.The space itself was formed from one of the more recent geological catastrophic events, occurring approximately 50,000 years ago. When a broken ice dam in Canada sent waves of floodwaters down through the Columbia River, the Gorge was carved in just two years time. You can learn all about it in the upcoming documentary Enormous: The Gorge Movie. Watch a teaser trailer below.But the story of how this geological phenomenon became one of the most beloved venues is a fascinating one.Back in 1980, neurosurgeon Vincent Bryan II and his wife Carol purchased the several hundred acre piece of land to start their own vineyard, as the latitude, soil and microclimate was similar to that of the famed growing regions in France. They didn’t quite know just how fortunate they actually had been. With Champs de Brionne Winery being born out of those first grape plantlings, the Bryans needed to figure out how to get people to come and join them at their gorgeous (get it?) expanse of land.It was during a hike of the “little gorge” with some friends, as Dr. Bryan decided to stay at the top of the bowl while Carol and some friends trekked to the bottom (over 1,000 feet below), that he realized the natural acoustics the bowl provided. He could literally hear every word that the group was saying below. At that point, the proverbial bulb went off, and the decision to bring music to the vineyard came to fruition. This was more of a tactic to bring people to a local, premier estate winery to enjoy Champs de Brionne wines rather than turn it into the massive operation that we see today, but as they say, everything starts small.With “a small wooden stage, and a few hastily-laid sod terraces,” the Champs de Brionne Amphitheatre was born and hosting small music gatherings with the concentration on the delicious wines the land had harvested.“People came, the band played, the wine wasn’t very good, and people still had a good time,” he said.Unwittingly, the Bryans created a concert amphitheater that, through the next decade, they built into a 24,000-seat venue. It went from “in the middle of nowhere” to “in the middle of everywhere,” the couple often explained. It’s infectious scenery, sense of peace, and intimate community was undeniable. “When musicians picked up their instruments and began to play and opened their mouths and began to sing, all of it: the entire, visceral experience of it all – had a profound effect,” according to the Cave B website.In 1993, they sold the entire operation — minus the surrounding vineyards — and today it is the world-famous Gorge Amphitheatre. The winery that spawned it, Champs de Brionne, was shuttered. Bryan, a Seattle neurosurgeon, went on to invent the artificial disc for the human spine.They continued to sell their grapes to other wineries, and in 2000, the Bryans approached winemaker Brian Carter about making a little wine for them under the name Cave B. Soon, they were busy building a beautiful winery next to the Gorge Amphitheatre, followed by a restaurant and lodging. For the past several years, Freddy Arredondo has been crafting gorgeous wines to match the amazing setting.From downtown Seattle to Cave B and its stunning views and facility, it’s just 150 miles, all interstate driving. It’s a remarkable destination that’s close to home and provides an experience you won’t soon forget. If interested in learning more about this facility, visit their website.For those of you traveling back from the beloved Gorge Amphitheatre this weekend, perhaps you’ll stop by for some tastes from their Loving Cup before you exit what is perhaps known as one of the most scenic concert locations in the world. Safe travels, Phish phans!With writing contributions from Chris Meyer, Eric Farnan, Kendall Deflin, and Dave Melamed in 2016.last_img read more


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first_imgPaying hospitals to improve their quality of care, known as pay-for-performance, has gained wide acceptance in the U.S., and Medicare has spent tens of millions of dollars on bonuses and rewards for hospitals to improve. However, little is known about whether pay-for-performance (P4P) actually improves patient outcomes over the long term. A new study from Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) finds no evidence that the largest hospital-based P4P program in the U.S. improved 30-day mortality rates, a measure of whether patients survive their hospitalization.Given that the Affordable Care Act calls for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to expand pay-for-performance to nearly all hospitals in 2012, the findings call into question whether this payment approach will have a beneficial effect on patient care.The study appears online March 28 in the New England Journal of Medicine.“These results suggest that the way we have currently conceived of pay-for-performance is unlikely to have any meaningful impact on patient outcomes,” said Ashish Jha, associate professor of health policy and management at HSPH and lead author of the study.The researchers, including senior author Arnold Epstein, professor and chair of the Department of Health Policy and Management at HSPH, analyzed data provided by 252 hospitals participating in Medicare’s Premier Hospital Quality Incentive Demonstration program. They examined 30-day mortality rates for more than 6 million patients with acute myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure, pneumonia, or coronary artery bypass graft surgery between 2004 and 2009. Non-Premier hospitals — those not part of Medicare’s pay-for-performance program — were used as a control group.The results showed that there was no impact on patient outcomes for hospitals in the Premier pay-for-performance program compared with non-Premier hospitals. In addition, no difference was found in outcomes even for conditions in which mortality rates were explicitly incentivized — acute myocardial infarction and coronary bypass graft surgery. Even among poor-performing hospitals, which have the most to gain by improving quality of care, improvements were comparable to poor-performing non-Premier hospitals.“Our findings suggest that both the size of the incentives and the targets matter. In the Premier demonstration, the incentives were small and patient outcomes were not the major focus. It is not surprising, in retrospect, that this program failed to improve patient care,” said Epstein.“We need to better align financial incentives with delivery of high-quality care,” said Jha. “This study suggests that in order to improve patient care, we are going to have to work a lot harder to identify and implement an incentive program that works.”The study was funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.last_img read more


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first_img The Best Sound Design of a Play and Best Sound Design of a Musical categories will be eliminated from the established list of competitive categories, beginning with the 2014-2015 season. A special Tony Award may be given to a production when the committee determines that extraordinary sound design has been achieved.  The 2013-2014 Tony Awards Administration Committee met June 11  for the last time this season to determine the eligibility rules for the 2014-2015 season. The Committee has determined that authors of plays and musicals that have not been previously produced on Broadway, but have been determined by the Tony Award Administration Committee to be part of the popular repertoire, and therefore have been deemed eligible in the Best Revival of a Play/Musical categories, will be included, along with producers in the Best Revival of a Play/Musical categories.  center_img View Commentslast_img read more


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first_imgFrom Prince to King! Original Pippin star John Rubinstein revisits the magical musical as he steps into the Tony-winning revival beginning June 19, a day earlier than scheduled. Rubinstein will play Charles, Pippin’s father. The Tony winner will join the Broadway big top at the Music Box Theatre through July 27, filling in during Terrance Mann’s leave of absence. View Comments Show Closed This production ended its run on Jan. 4, 2015 Pippin features music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Roger O. Hirson and tells the story of a young prince searching for his corner of the sky. In addition to Rubinstein, the current cast includes Kyle Dean Massey as Pippin, Ciara Renee as Leading Player, Annie Potts as Berthe, Charlotte d’Amboise as Fastrada and Rachel Bay Jones as Catherine. Pippin In addition to making his Great White Way debut in Pippin in 1972, Rubinstein received a Tony Award for his performance in Children of a Lesser God. His other Broadway credits include Ragtime, Getting Away With Murder, Love Letters and M. Butterfly. Related Showslast_img read more


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first_imgCentral Vermont Public Service (NYSE-CV) today announced that it has reached a settlement with the Vermont Department of Public Service, the Town of Proctor Selectboard and Omya Inc. for the purchase of the assets of and consolidation of service territory of the Vermont Marble Power Division of Omya.The transaction has already been approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, which regulates the hydro sites and transmission facilities involved in the sale, but must also be approved by the Vermont Public Service Board.Under the settlement, the purchase price of the previously announced sale will decrease from $33.2 million to approximately $29.25 million, including $28.25 million for Vermont Marble’s hydroelectric facilities and about $1 million for the other assets.  The agreement includes a five-year, six-step phase-in of residential rate changes for existing VMPD customers, which will be funded by Omya up to an amount estimated to be approximately $1.125 million.  The agreement also requires creation of a value sharing pool that provides for certain excess value received by CVPS to be split between CVPS’s customers, Omya and CVPS shareholders if energy market prices and hydro improvements create more value than anticipated.‘The Department of Public Service raised concerns about the purchase price, which led to further negotiations and a reduced price,’ CVPS Executive Chairman Bob Young said.  ‘The Town of Proctor was also helpful in suggesting ways to reduce the impact of rate changes on customers, which led to the long-term phase-in for residential customers.’CVPS’s current rates, though among the lowest of any investor-owned utility in New England, are higher than Vermont Marble’s rates because Omya has largely subsidized local electrical service in Proctor.  Absent the sale, Omya planned significant, needed infrastructure upgrades that would have affected rates.Included in the sale are rights to serve about 875 customers in Proctor, including the Omya industrial facility in Florence, which will become CV’s single-largest customer.  The sale also includes four hydroelectric facilities with a current combined capacity of 18.5 megawatts.  After the acquisition, CV will own and operate the largest fleet of hydroelectric generating stations in all of New England.‘The DPS and town leaders helped make this an even better deal for customers, both in Proctor and in the larger CVPS service territory,’ Young said.  ‘This purchase will provide economies of scale, and will allow CVPS to significantly expand renewable generation by adding the hydro facilities to our fleet, improving their performance over time, and expanding their nameplate capacity by about 3 megawatts.  That increase alone will provide enough clean energy for 3,000 homes.’CV plans to invest an estimated $15 million to upgrade the Vermont Marble facilities and operate them in consort with CV’s existing Otter Creek and East Creek hydro operations.  The company said it would also: Invest in the Vermont Marble system, immediately replacing the main substation at the Proctor hydro site and spreading the approximate $1.5 million cost over CV’s 159,000 customers rather than just Vermont Marble’s customers.Provide Proctor residents and businesses with greater resources.  For example, in the event of major storms, CV has nearly 30 line workers within an hour’s drive of Proctor.Offer choices and services Vermont Marble customers don’t have today, including automatic bill payments through CVPS Electripay, on-line bill payments, CVPS Cow Powerâ ¢, various rate choices, budget billing, on-line bill review and outage information, and in the near future, CVPS SmartPowerâ ¢, an advanced automated meter reading, outage detection and power management system. Vermont Marble’s seasonal and block-structure rate designs will be replaced with year-round flat rates.  Residential rates for existing Vermont Marble customers will be frozen at current levels initially, but will rise each January, based on pre-established rate credits, until they match CVPS’s rates.  Given the disparity between the companies’ current rates it is expected to take five years to complete the phase-in.  The rate credits become smaller each year until they reach zero.  The rate credits were developed to narrow the gap between current CVPS rates and current Vermont Marble rates while limiting the phase-in rate increases to no more than 10 percent per year.  Vermont Marble customers will also be subject to any change in CVPS rates on a going-forward basis, so combined rate changes for Vermont Marble residential customers may be more or less than 10 percent. ‘CV will represent a good value for our new customers,’ Young said.  ‘We continue to provide extremely competitive rates within the greater Northeast, and customer satisfaction and service quality remain high. CVPS is the only utility in Vermont to meet every one of its service quality standards over the pasts seven years, and reliability and customer service will remain a top priority in the years ahead.’ Source: CVPS. 3.2.2011last_img read more


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first_img April 1, 2006 Regular News PEC moves three items An expanded local lawyer referral service, a disability survey, and a new Bar award were all recommended by the Bar’s Program Evaluation Committee and approved by the Board of Governors at its Tallahassee meeting.The survey is intended to elicit information from lawyers with disabilities about barriers they face in their practice — from finding work to physical impediments that hinder their performance.PEC member Richard Tanner said the Bar had a polling expert review the questionnaire and he found it well done, needing only some minor edits. He did warn, though, that some lawyers might find the survey too long and that could affect the number of responses.The survey will be posted on the Bar’s Web site, www.floridabar.org, for interested members.The survey is part of the Disability-Diversity Initiative being conducted by the Disability Independence Group.“The goal of the initiative is to identify attitudinal, physical, and communication barriers that prohibit the full participation of Florida attorneys with disabilities and to propose creative recommendations and solutions to these barriers,” according to information provided to the board.The board approved the final survey form.The board also approved the PEC’s recommendation that the Broward County Bar Association’s Lawyer Referral Service be allowed to expand to take calls from Miami-Dade County.“The Miami-Dade Bar Association thinks it’s a grand idea, The Florida Bar has signed off on it, Broward County thinks they can handle it,” Tanner said. He added that only lawyers who are members of the Miami-Dade County Bar Association will be able to take referral calls from that county.The action means The Florida Bar’s Lawyer Referral Service, which handles referral calls around the state in areas where local bars do not provide that service, will no longer take calls from Miami-Dade.And acting on the recommendation of the Board of Legal Specialization and Education, the PEC approved in concept the BLSE creating an annual Excellent in the Promotion of Board Certification Award. Tanner said the award would recognize a lawyer who has done an outstanding job promoting the certification program.PEC will review the recommendation one more time and then bring it to the board for final approval at its April meeting.center_img PEC moves three itemslast_img read more


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first_img 23SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr Volkswagen is a cheater.There is just no other way to put it. The company outfitted roughly half a million diesel vehicles with software that turned on full pollution control only during official pollution testing. After the test concluded, the software turned off the pollution control system.Think about that. Someone (likely many people) developed a computer program that deceived inspections. Either the programmers knew when vehicles were being tested, or someone else supplied that information. How many people knew about what was going on in Volkswagen?The automaker is facing fines estimated at nearly $20 billion. And Volkswagen’s CEO now says that he is deeply sorry for the manipulation. continue reading »last_img read more


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