Diana Tickell Line manager training is key to supporting working parents

first_imgA survey by the National Advertising Benevolent Society (NABS), published in April 2016, revealed that the vast majority of respondents, both parents and non-parents, believe that working mums and dads provide a positive contribution to the advertising industry. Despite this, we also found that many working parents are still experiencing significant pressures, such as managing workloads, fatigue and guilt, which lead to many leaving the industry and contributing to a cost of churn of £184m a year.One surprising fact was that only 6% of those surveyed has received any type of training focused on how to support expectant and working parents. This is a huge error because an employee’s relationship with his or her direct manager is acknowledged as the most important factor in employee engagement and would help address the pressures described above.Having good policies in place is important, but without adequate training we run the risk of not translating these policies into active practices that result in a supportive workplace culture. Some managers are not confident in spotting the signs of when people are struggling and are therefore ill-equipped to help, meaning poor practice remains unresolved.Our survey taught us that we must ensure there is specific training on top of existing management or diversity training that focuses on expectant and working parents. Many of the organisations we spoke to that have created really supportive working cultures for working parents and are retaining their talent, train managers in appropriate maternity and paternity conversations.They provide robust frameworks to advise line managers when managing working parents, encourage and offer coaching for pregnant workers before they go on maternity leave and have robust keep-in-touch and returner programmes. Importantly, they recognise the changing roles of parents and are holding workshops for new and expectant dads too.Policies are really important in improving practices, but it’s behavioural change, which emanates from the very top, embedded throughout with training and accountability, that will ultimately change culture, and that’s the key to real, long-term change that benefits everyone; parents and their colleagues alike.Diana Tickell is chief executive officer at the National Advertising Benevolent Society (NABS)last_img read more

What role does roboadvice play in a financial education strategy

first_imgRobo-advice is fast becoming a popular method of reaching employees in the workplace with information and guidance as part of a financial education programme.Robo-advice has been in existence for a few years but it was the retail distribution review (RDR) that prompted a new era in the financial advice industry. Since 1 January 2013, independent financial advisers (IFAs) and employee benefits brokers and intermediaries have been remunerated on a fees basis rather than commission. Until that point, much of the financial education and advice had been provided by intermediaries’ commission, with some employers and employees unaware of how, and for what, they were paying.Transparency to advice costWhile RDR brought many benefits, it also created a wide chasm between those that could afford advice, and those that were unable and unwilling to pay for it. Jon Bryant, director at Aon Employee Benefits, says: “RDR had many good benefits, transparency being one of them: ensuring clarity around what services are offered and what earnings are going to be had.”However, it removed the necessity for employers to give employees access to advice and assistance, explains Bryant. “Suddenly an employer didn’t have to spend £100,000 to give member surgeries and one-to-ones,” he says. “The industry is changing, three years afterwards, and will continue to change. Part of that change is robo-advice, the principal being mass customisation.”The popularity of robo-advice got a further boost this year when the Financial advice market review (FAMR), published in March 2016 by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA), found that up to 16 million people could be trapped in that financial advice gap whereby they need advice but cannot afford it. Ezechi Britton, co-founder and chief technology officer at Neyber, says: “Automation is a good thing, having these kinds of services in place reduce the costs and can potentially increase the quality of decisions that are made.”Streamlined processRobo-advice works using algorithms that will interpret data, input by the employer and employee, and create a recommendation based on the individual’s circumstances. David Pugh, managing partner at Lemonade Reward, says: “It uses technology to streamline the process and make it more cost-effective. If [an employer] has a thousand employees going through a certain process, [it has] a brilliant audit trail, and it’s repeatable for the following year in the same process.”The programmes can give advice on many issues and, usually, employees are asking three questions regarding their retirement, explains Phil Blows, account director at Wealth Wizards. These questions are: am I investing enough to hit my retirement objectives?; am I doing this in a tax-efficient manner?; and is it invested in the appropriate mix of funds?“A 64-year-old, a year away from retirement, and a 22-year-old just out of university don’t want to be in the same investments,” says Blows. “We would look at doing a yearly health check with an employee so that they log into the system and get advice yearly.”While a robo-advice system can play an ideal role in providing employees with advice and guidance for pensions investments, it can also play into a wider financial education programme. Britton says: “A lot of the time we’re trying to solve the problem for the [older workers] and their pensions, however, we mustn’t forget the younger demographic as well: people in their early 20s who have no idea what to do with their money.“They are in a position where the right decisions at that point could have huge potential benefits for them as they get older. Historically, it’s been very difficult for people in that group to get access to quality advice because they can’t afford it and they don’t know who to go to.”By providing robo-advice alongside other channels that employees already have access to, it will provide better advice at an earlier critical stage, adds Britton.Human reassurancesFor some employees, robo-advice systems might be just the start of the journey for financial education, while for others it might offer all the recommendations and information they need. However, the consensus is that that technology is not quite at a stage where employees are confident to act on the advice given by the system alone, and many still want some form of human interaction. Dominic Fryer, head of corporate pensions at Aviva, says: “It remains the case that for big financial transactions, a lot of [employees] still want face-to face reassurance that they are doing the right thing. [With] pensions and some of the complexities that are a result of the pension freedoms, the decision on the route that [an employee] might take, for example, at retirement, is quite a complex decision.”While, in time, robo-advice might be at a stage where it can interpret an employee’s situation, the human condition is such that when making a big financial decision, people still like the reassurance of getting a response from a human being. However, any system that can streamline the process, cut costs and bring advice to those that would not necessarily have had any, is only a step in the right direction of closing that gap.Aberdeen Asset Management uses robo-advice to promote awareness of pension changesAberdeen Asset Management introduced a robo-advice platform to help employees fully understand the complex pension changes that came into effect on 6 April 2016, specifically the changes to the annual allowance and lifetime allowance for high earners.The financial services organisation worked with Lemonade Reward to introduce a platform whereby employees could enter their data, such as earnings and pension contributions, and the system worked out what their new allowance and tax bill would be.Brian Thomson, head of reward and operations at Aberdeen Asset Management, says: “It was built around those changes and we felt that, as an employer, we needed to communicate with people, so we sent out emails across the organisation. We’d kept people up to speed in the run-up as well, in terms of ‘these changes are coming’.”The online service was complemented with face-to-face seminars and presentations, and employees were also able to ask individual questions of the Lemonade team.“Even though we are a financial services [organisation], not everybody was fully aware of the changes,” says Thomson. “Some of them are quite complex, especially the annual allowance and the tapering of that. So [employees] were very appreciative of all aspects: the initial communications, the access to the online assessment, and the seminars and face-to-face support.”Of its 1,500 UK employees, around 400 accessed the robo-advice platform; more than were estimated to be at risk of pension tax charges. Thomson explains that the business reasons behind implementing the platform came down to time, consistency and cost. “We needed something that we could re-use because we don’t think this will be a one-off situation, so something that gives us a strong base to build on and repeat, if we need to, next year,” he explains. Viewpoint: Robo-advice is designed to help plug the financial advice gapThe size of the ‘advice gap’, the number of people who do not get financial advice, creates a significant risk that employees will seek to remain employed beyond the point where they are productive, because of inadequate retirement income.Recent moves, such as the so-called retail distribution review (RDR), have raised standards among financial advisers, but also made their services far more expensive; they are now unaffordable to most employees. Emerging automated advice services, sometimes called robo-advice, are designed to help address the advice gap.Most current services focus on helping consumers with savings decisions before retirement. While some may be offered on an entirely self-service basis, many benefits consultants and pension providers are looking to use these as a first-line offering backed up by human support. Although initially many such services have targeted consumers directly, the cost of attracting customers has meant that increasingly these offerings are being provided by traditional corporate advice and benefits firms.Many of the early services are presenting guidance to individuals on taking financial decisions rather than formal advice. While guidance can still be beneficial to employees it lacks the statutory protection provided with formal advice, so, while both can be valuable, it is important to understand the difference.Ian McKenna is director of the Finance and Technology Research Centre Need to know:The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) estimates that there are 16 million people in the ‘advice gap’: those that need financial advice but cannot afford it.While the retail distribution review (RDR) made the advice charging process more transparent, it also made it more expensive by raising standards.Robo-advice is seen as a solution to the gap in that it can offer advice through a streamlined process making it more affordable.last_img read more

44 of staff looking for a new job are unhappy with their

first_imgAlmost half (44%) of respondents who are looking to move jobs in the new year are unhappy with their current benefits package, according to research by Canada Life Group Insurance.Its survey of 1,002 full and part-time employees also found that 74% of respondents who are unhappy with their current benefits provision agree that this plays a role in their decision to look for a new job, and 29% feel it plays a significant role.The research also found:Half (50%) of all respondents plan to look for a new job in 2017, compared to 67% of respondents aged 25-34 years old.24% of respondents who are looking for a new position receive no employee benefits.27% of respondents looking for a new role report that their current benefits have never been communicated to them.54% of respondents who plan to look for a new job in 2017 hope to receive more money.46% of respondents who are looking to move jobs admit they could be incentivised to stay in their current role.More than half (57%) of respondents could be incentivised to stay in their current job if their pay was improved.Excluding better pay, 60% of respondents who are searching for a new job would be tempted to stay in their current role if they were offered flexible working.22% of respondents looking for a new position feel that being offered group income protection would entice them to move jobs, and 24% of respondents cite group critical illness as a benefit that could encourage them to look to work elsewhere.Paul Avis (pictured), marketing director at Canada Life Group, said: “The start of the new year acts as a natural prompt for many employees to consider their futures. Employers must be aware that members of their workforce could be tempted to head for the door, although offering the right benefits package can help prevent organisations from losing valuable staff.“It’s time for employers to recognise that employee benefits, and crucially, effectively communicating their availability, are effective retention tools in the war for talent. Products like group income protection and group critical illness demonstrate to staff that their employer values their wellbeing and cares about their financial security, making them more inclined to stay.”last_img read more

47 of defined benefit pension transfers since 2015 were suitable

first_imgLess than half (47%) of 88 recommended defined benefit (DB) pension scheme transfers advised upon since October 2015 were suitable, according to a review by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).The review, which has been conducted over the past two years in order to update current FCA guidelines, assessed the advice individuals receive from advisory firms regarding transferring their DB pension to a personal pension. The review investigated the potential risk of harm to individuals, the suitability of the advice they were receiving, as well as the FCA’s continued exploration of scams.Since October 2015, the FCA has reviewed 88 DB transfers where the recommendation was to transfer. It found that 47% of these were suitable, 17% were unsuitable, and a further 36% where it was unclear if a recommendation was suitable.The review also found that only 35% of the DB transfers had a suitable product and fund recommendation, 24% had recommended unsuitable products and funds, and for 40% the suitability was unclear. This is much lower than the FCA’s other findings regarding the wider advisory market for pensions. For example, its Assessing suitability review, published in May 2017, found that 90% of pensions accumulation advice and 91% of retirement income advice was suitable.The review also warned of the risks involved when advisory firms introduce individual clients to specialist pension transfer advisory organisations. The FCA stated that due to not sharing information sufficiently between the two advising organisations, individuals could have their pension savings invested in an inappropriate or scam investment as the specialist organisation did not have enough information about the individual’s objectives, needs and circumstances.The FCA further found instances where one of the advisory organisations made a recommendation without knowing where the transfer proceeds would ultimately be invested, or did not make a recommendation for a receiving scheme or investment. The FCA stated that individuals would not be able to make a fully informed decision without receiving advice that took all of these elements in to consideration.The review also raised concerns around transfer analysis that was based on default schemes or funds, despite these not being the actual receiving funds, and whether advisory organisations had the resources in place to deal with the increased number of referrals appropriately, with many informing the FCA that they were struggling to process cases within three months of the transfer offer.As a result of the FCA assessment, four of the 22 organisations analysed no longer advise on DB pension transfers. The review also found that since 2016, 32 organisations have stopped providing advice in this field or have decided to limit pension transfer activity.The FCA review findings will be used to direct a response to its consultation paper Advising on pension transfer, which was launched in June 2017. Furthermore, the FCA plans to carry out a further phase of supervisory assessments starting in the current business year.Steven Cameron, pensions director at Aegon, said: “The FCA update on its review of DB transfer advice suitability provides helpful insight into where [its] concerns around previous practices lie. Advisers can now review this alongside the proposals for future DB transfer advice set out in the FCA recent consultation. Both of these FCA publications highlight the importance of considering the customer’s needs as well as objectives and of taking into account the recommended receiving scheme and investment approach based on the client’s attitude to risk. This clarity will allow advisers and transfer specialists to review their approach, including how they share information to ensure they are meeting FCA expectations. This should then allow advisers and specialists to work together with confidence to begin to meet the huge pent up demand from customers.”Tom McPhail, head of policy at Hargreaves Lansdown, added: “Taken in conjunction with evidence of a rapid decline in demand for annuities, we are concerned about pension investors’ increasing dependence on non-guaranteed pensions for their retirement security. This has important implications for policy makers in government and in the FCA.”last_img read more

Nottingham and Derbyshirebased Trentbarton bus drivers strike in pay dispute

first_imgAround 160 bus drivers at transport organisation Trentbarton in Nottingham and Derbyshire, who are members of the trade union Unite, are undertaking strike action today (Monday 10 September 2018) in a dispute over pay.Unite members who work at Trentbarton voted 70% in favour of strike action, after rejecting the organisation’s offer of a 2.5% pay increase for the period of April 2018 to April 2019.The dispute concerns the fact that Trentbarton proposed a 3.5% pay increase, which combined a 2.5% pay rise and the employer’s statutory 1% pension contribution, required under auto-enrolment regulations. Unite stated that pension contributions made through auto-enrolment should be distinct from annual pay, and not combined to present a more attractive pay package.Scott Lennon, regional officer at Unite, said: “The management have muddied the waters by adding in their 1% auto-enrolment pension contribution to make the pay offer look much more attractive than it actually is. Our members would also contribute 2% of their pay towards auto-enrolment.“We believe that pay and pensions should be decoupled as they are different issues; one refers to present day pay and the other towards retirement income.”Trentbarton bus drivers plan to participate in further industrial action on 17 and 24 September 2018. Additional dates in October and November are also being reviewed.Lennon added: “We are calling on the management to get around the table and negotiate in a constructive fashion to achieve a fair pay deal for our members.“I appreciate that this industrial action will cause problems for the travelling public, but our members’ wages are lagging behind as the cost of living soars. The drivers have seen reductions in their shifts and potential earning capacity cut drastically.“Our members are living hand to mouth and some are even having to use food banks, which is a disgrace for a dedicated workforce in 2018. We have been informed of at least five cases of our members who have had to resort to food banks to augment their poverty pay.”Trentbarton is part of the Wellglade Group, which operates bus services in Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire, Staffordshire and South Yorkshire, as well as the Nottingham Express Transit tram system in Nottingham.Trentbarton is unavailable for comment at the time of publication.last_img read more

No injuries after fire in Miami homes backyard

first_imgMIAMI (WSVN) – Firefighters hosed down a fire in the backyard of a Miami home, Monday.7 Skyforce cameras captured the scene, near Northwest 43rd Place and Third Street.Firefighters have not determined the cause of the fire.No one was hurt.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img

Burglar smashes way into South Florida restaurant

first_imgOAKLAND PARK, FLA. (WSVN) – A burglar smashed his way into an Oakland Park restaurant.Surveillance video captured the thief throwing a rock through the window of “Thai Rice” on Commercial Boulevard and Northwest 15th Avenue just before 6 a.m., on May 18.The man then headed for the register and ran off with an undisclosed amount of cash.If you have any information on this burglary, call Broward County Crime Stoppers at 954-493-TIPS. Remember, you can always remain anonymous, and you may be eligible for a $3,000 reward.Copyright 2019 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.last_img read more

Sullivan Debate Over Violence Must Be Broader Than Guns

first_imgBoth he and Walker expressed concern with proposals to raise the minimum age to buy a gun, citing the state’s hunting culture. Sullivan, a Republican, was in Alaska’s capital Monday, for an annual address to the state Legislature in which he expressed optimism for Alaska’s future and touched on policy victories over the last year. But he said he wants to speak with advisers from within his administration and possibly also hear from outside voices before taking any action. He said he wants to discuss ideas other states have done to see if they would make sense in Alaska. With crime a concern for many Alaskans, Sullivan said work remains in trying to ensure that communities are safe. He said the shooting at a Florida high school earlier this month that left 17 people dead had forced a national discussion on school safety. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan said violence in video games and movies should be discussed as part of a larger debate on gun violence and suggested Monday that states should decide whether school teachers should be armed. But if that isn’t part of the discussion, “I think we’re really missing something,” he said. He also said there is an opportunity to learn from what happened in the Florida shooting, including “red flags” that had been raised about the alleged shooter that may have been missed. “However, as Alaskans, we understand how important our Second Amendment rights are,” he said. “We use firearms not only for self-defense but as a tool to feed our families. And in many ways we are unique from almost every other state in the nation on this issue.” Sullivan told reporters he has doubts about the idea of arming teachers, which President Donald Trump has floated. He suggested that’s an issue that should be decided at the state, rather than the federal, level. “I think we have to do something that will make a difference,” said Walker, a former Republican no longer affiliated with a party. Sullivan said some might scoff at that or ridicule him as a “modern-day Tipper Gore.” Gore, in the 1980s, was part of an effort that pushed for parental warning labels on music with violent or sexually explicit lyrics. Meanwhile, Alaska Gov. Bill Walker, who was in Washington, D.C. for a gathering of the nation’s governors, told The Associated Press something must be done in response to the violence. He also said the discussion about gun violence must go beyond guns, citing what he says has been a “hardening of our culture” over the last 40 years with violent movies and video games. Teenagers hunt, Walker noted. “There’s no one-size-fits-all as far as I’m concerned,” Walker said. “It is a states’ rights issue, I believe, and we need to address it as Alaskans, what makes the most sense.” He said he will evaluate proposals brought forward on the federal level aimed at preventing similar incidents in the future.last_img read more

Borough Assembly Questions Mayors Online Poll Amid Budget Negotiations

first_imgDespite the backlash among the assembly, Mayor Pierce believes “this is a his poll is excellent and has been very well received.” Mayor Pierce took to Facebook to post an online poll for members of the Borough to weigh in on the proposed budget, but some members of the assembly have voiced their apprehension to how accurate the poll might be. KPB Mayor Pierce and his administration presented the FY2019 budget to the borough assembly at their meeting on May 15. According to a post on social media, Mayor Pierce feels like his “plan was initially shot down, and  feels it is critical to listen to the people that he was elected to serve.” Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Budget talks are looming all over the Kenai Peninsula, and Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce has taken to social media in an attempt to hear from the local residents regarding his recent FY2019 budget proposal. Assemblyman Willy Dunne: “It is difficult to fully understand all of the fiscal and economic implications of the choices presented in this simplistic and biased poll.”center_img Of the nearly 400 borough residents that have taken the time to fill out the poll,  the results are pretty evenly split, with the property tax option getting the least support. Assemblywoman Kelly Cooper commented: “This poll isn’t very clear so results will be skewed. This is messaging & not fair to our constituents. They’re savvy & will understand it. As presented, it’s simply a poll weighted to get the results you want.” A vote on the finalized budget for the FY2019 will go before the assembly on June 5.last_img read more

Reminder HEA Members Will See A Rate Increase Starting July 1

first_imgFacebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Homer Electric Association, (HEA) members will see an increase in their monthly bills beginning on Sunday, July 1. According to a release, HEA proposes an increase to the Cost of Power Adjustment (COPA) rate from $0.06701 per kilowatt hour (kWh) to $0.07270 kWh, which is an increase of 8.49%. The average residential member who uses 550 kWh/month will see a $3.31 increase in theirbill. The primary driver of the increase is HEA’s greater reliance on its higher priced baseload gascontract going forward to fuel generation, compared to lower priced gas spot market opportunitiesthat HEA has been able to act upon year to date.center_img The COPA is adjusted on a quarterly basis and primarily reflects the cost of natural gas used to generate power for HEA members. This rate increase is effective to all HEA members.last_img read more

Update Troopers Request Assistance Locating Three Children Missing From Seward Area

first_imgThe foster parents allowed the children to leave with the female. Later shown a photo of the person the woman claimed to be, the foster parents confirmed it was not the same female who took the children. Additional details will be posted as they are made available. ORIGINAL POSTThe Alaska State Troopers are searching for three children that were last seen in Seward on August 5. The children are identified as Slate Erickson, age 4; Jedidiah “Fox” Erickson, age 7; and Pepper Erickson, age 9.The investigation into the children’s disappearance revealed on August 5 a female arrived at the foster home claiming to be sent by OCS. The woman provided a name that the foster parents recognized as someone who they anticipated may be taking the children, but whom they had never met. Facebook0TwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享Last updated on August 12th, 2019 at 06:12 amUPDATE 3:40pmErickson children and mother Melissa Salgado have been found safe in Cordova. On August 6, the Office of Children’s Services requested Alaska State Troopers perform a welfare check for three children in foster care. The following day it was determined the children were wrongfully removed from a foster home in the Seward area by an unknown female. Further investigation has revealed the children’s mother, Melissa Salgado, 40, of Seward, is also missing.  There is a concern the children could be anywhere along the road system.Anyone with information regarding the location of Salgado or the children is asked to contact the Alaska State Troopers in Soldotna at 907-262-4453.last_img read more

RR Donnelley Splitting into Three Public Companies

first_img Like most other printers over the last five years, RR Donnelley had been aggressively diversifying its services into other markets to bolster its more traditional print business.  The spinoffs are expected to be completed by the end of 2016 and existing RR Donnelley shareholders will end up owning shares in all three companies. Management teams and branding are still being developed, the company says. The custom marketing communications company will be the largest, which under RR Donnelley’s current structure accounted for 12-month net sales of $7 billion. The traditional printing services operation made $3.5 million in revenue and the financial communications business brought in $1 billion in the last year.  The theory goes that by separating the three units, they’ll be able to focus on their own unique strategies and independently execute on them.  RR Donnelley plans to separate into a financial communications services business, a custom marketing communications operation and a printing services company. RR Donnelley announced this week that it intends to split itself into three publicly traded companies—a process that has gained steam in the media market as companies that previously combined ancillary businesses with their core “traditional” media have started to spin off the components to try and unlock more value.  Not all of RR Donnelley’s acquisitions were from new markets—the company spent $620 million on Chicago-based printer Consolidated Graphics in late 2013 and beat out Quad/Graphics to acquire book manufacturer Courier Corp. earlier this year. Among RR Donnelley’s more recent acquisitions were digital replica producer LibreDigital and paywall provider Press+ in 2011. The company bought Bowne Financial in 2010 and EDGAR Online in 2012. Those two formed the foundation for the financial communications business.  “We see significant opportunity to unlock value by allowing these three businesses to pursue their own strategies and invest according to the unique dynamics of their respective industries,” says RR Donnelley president and CEO Thomas J. Quinlan III in a statement. “Each company will have the strategic focus, management resources and capital structure to enable it to strengthen its market position and pursue its growth opportunities, enhancing long-term value for stakeholders.” Crain’s Chicago Business reports that RR Donnelley may be separating the units for an easier path to divestment. Of particular interest would be the financial and marketing communication segments. Decoupling the higher growth businesses from the traditional printing operation makes them more convenient targets, says the report. Printers have already gone through significant consolidation and have been buying up or partnering with ancillary services, like digital magazine producers, e-commerce solutions and the like, to drive top-line growth.last_img read more

Report White House Blocking Deal to Raise Spending Caps

first_img ADC AUTHOR President Trump does not want a deal to raise mandatory spending caps, Axios reported Monday.The White House appears to be dug in on the topline numbers in the administration’s fiscal year 2020 budget request. The request pushes defense spending to $750 billion by putting extra money in the overseas contingency operations (OCO) account, which is not subject to spending caps.House Democrats and Senate Republicans have hoped to reach a deal to raise the limit on defense and nondefense spending, but the president “really wants to stick to his numbers and doesn’t want a caps deal, because that means more domestic spending,” a source told Axios.House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) last week blamed Mick Mulvaney, the White House acting chief of staff and director of the Office of Management and Budget, for derailing bipartisan talks “to use it as leverage,” Hoyer said, as On Base reported.The House Budget Committee will consider legislation to raise the caps at a Wednesday meeting.Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Westin Warburtonlast_img read more

Keely Smith JazzPop Singer Dies At 89

first_img Keely Smith: 1928–2017 keely-smith-jazzpop-singer-dies-89 Email Keely Smith: Jazz/Pop Singer Dies At 89 Facebook Twitter News The classic balladeer was known for her GRAMMY-winning duet with Louis Prima, “That Old Black Magic”Philip MerrillGRAMMYs Dec 18, 2017 – 4:14 pm Iconic pop/jazz vocalist Keely Smith died in Palm Springs, Calif., on Dec. 16. The Los Angeles Times reports the cause of death was apparent heart failure. She was 89.Best known for the classic 1958 duet version of “That Old Black Magic” with her then-husband Louis Prima, some considered her a “straight man” playing against Prima’s comedic antics. Their act became a top staple of the Las Vegas scene through the 1950s. After she filed for divorce from Prima in 1961, she signed with Reprise, a new label formed by Frank Sinatra, and began working with arranger Nelson Riddle.Smith won a GRAMMY for Best Performance By A Vocal Group Or Chorus for “That Old Black Magic” at the 1st Annual GRAMMY Awards. She was also nominated for “I Wish You Love” in the category Best Vocal Performance, Female that same year. She earned an additional nomination for Keely Sings Sinatra for Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album at the 44th GRAMMY Awards.Her iconic status was reinforced performing “That Old Black Magic” at the milestone 50th GRAMMY Awards with Kid Rock.”In a career spanning more than seven decades, Keely was celebrated by fans and critics alike, praised for her powerful vocals,” said Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow. “Keely will be greatly missed and our sincerest condolences go out to her family, friends and creative collaborators.”Rihanna To Lady Gaga: Rethinking Pop With Women In The CenterRead morelast_img read more

OBITUARY Thomas A Feindel 22

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Thomas A. Feindel, “Tom”, age 22, a lifelong resident of Wilmington, passed away unexpectedly on January 13, 2019 at the Winchester Hospital.Tom was born on February 24, 1996 in Winchester, MA; he was the cherished son of Kenneth and Janice Feindel. Tom attended Wilmington Public Schools and went on to attend Shawsheen Valley Technical High School in Billerica where he studied plumbing. Tom graduated Shawsheen Tech with the Class of 2014. While attending Shawsheen Tech, Tom went to work for Houghton Plumbing in Stoneham during his “shop weeks”. Tom loved his job and his co-workers; he was knowledgeable about plumbing and had great people skills when it came to dealing with the customers. Tom was still employed for Houghton Plumbing at the time of his death.Throughout his life, Tom was very involved with the Boy Scouts; he earned the rank of Eagle Scout by completing his Eagle Project which consisted of him adding a two bay wash sink at Camp 40 Acres in Wilmington and building a roof shelter over it for the campers. Tom enjoyed all the outdoor activities and camping that came with scouting and he met some great people along the way that became lifelong friends.Tom was a great kid who had a big heart and was always looking out for others; he took the time to listen, help, stand up for the “little guy” and he would go out of his way to do something nice for someone. Tom was not judgmental and never turned anyone away who needed help. Tom also enjoyed volunteering and he took several mission trips with his friends through the Wilmington Methodist Church; this was an eye-opening experience for this young man to see how other parts of the country and world lived. Tom always came back feeling very fortunate to have the loving family and support system that he called home.Tom’s family was the center of his life; he had wonderful parents and brothers whom he adored. Tom looked forward to the time they spent together, the fun they had, and all the wonderful memories they shared. Tom was also fortunate enough to have a great extended family and a “village of friends” who he loved dearly. Tom will forever be in the hearts of those he loved.Tom was the cherished son of Kenneth and Janice (McLean) Feindel, beloved brother of Christopher Feindel and Bryan Feindel & his girlfriend Allison Rotger all of Wilmington, dear grandson of Mary & the late Gordon “Mac” McLean of Woburn and Dorothy Nickerson & the late Kenneth Feindel of Melrose. Loving Nephew of Cheryl & Scott Reynolds of Yonkers, NY, Rick Feindel & Christine Twombly of Plaistow, NH, Robyn Feindel of Wadsworth, OH, Robert McLean of Woburn, Deb Fournier and Larry Nickerson and the late Donna Feindel. Tom is also survived by his girlfriend Morgan VanValkenberg of Danvers, his godfather Donald Wheaton & wife Kathy of Stoneham, his godmother Elaine Rockwood of Wakefield, his loving dog Diesel as well as many cousins and his village of friends.Family and friends will gather at the Nichols Funeral Home, 187 Middlesex Ave. (Rte. 62) Wilmington, on Friday, January 18th at 9:00 a.m. followed by a Mass of Christian Burial in St. Dorothy’s Church, Main St. (Rte. 38), Wilmington at 10:00 a.m. Interment will take place in Wildwood Cemetery, Wilmington. Visiting Hours will be held at the Funeral Home on Thursday, January 17th from 4:00-8:00 p.m.In lieu of flowers, donations in Thomas’ memory may be made to Neurofibromatosis Northeast, 9 Bedford St., Burlington, MA 01803.Thomas A. Feindel(NOTE: The above obituary is from Nichols Funeral Home.)Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedOBITUARY: Brandon M. Long, 27In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Janet (Colucci) O’Connor, 86In “Obituaries”OBITUARY: Carl J. Giangregorio, 37In “Obituaries”last_img read more

ELECTION UPDATE Mark Maselli Pulls Papers To Run For Selectman

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Wilmington Apple has learned that resident Mark Maselli pulled nomination papers to run for the Board of Selectmen on Monday afternoon.Maselli and his wife have been small business owners since 2002. He has three children, all of which attend Wilmington Public Schools. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sports Administration and a minor in Economics from St. Thomas University in Miami. He was born and raised in West Philadelphia, and moved to the state in 1996. He has lived in Wilmington for the past 16 years.Maselli is seeking one of the two 3-year seats currently occupied by incumbents Greg Bendel and Kevin Caira, both of whom are seeking re-election. Additional challengers include former Selectwoman Suzanne Sullivan, last year’s runner-up Rob Fasulo, and Daniel Murphy.Jomarie O’Mahony and Daryn Marsh are seeking the final year remaining on Selectman Ed Loud’s term. Loud is expected to resign from the Board at the end of the Monday, February 11 meeting after accepting a new job that requires significant out-of-state travel.To get on the ballot, nomination papers, with at least 50 valid signatures from Wilmington voters, are due back to the Town Clerk by Friday, March 8. As of last Friday, Bendel and Murphy were the only Selectmen candidates to have returned their nomination papers.The Annual Town Election will be held on Saturday, April 27, 2019.  Polls will be open from 8am to 8pm.NOTE TO CANDIDATES & CAMPAIGNS: Got announcements, press releases, letters to the editor, etc.?  Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedLETTER TO THE EDITOR: Maselli Speaks From The Heart And Is Genuine, Transparent & RealIn “Letter To The Editor”SELECTMEN NEWS: Appointments To Town’s New Economic Development Committee Gets ComplicatedIn “Government”LETTER TO THE EDITOR: A Letter In Support Of Mark Maselli From The Person Who Knows Him BestIn “Letter To The Editor”last_img read more

SELECTMEN NEWS Recreation Department Increases Number Of Town Beach Lifeguards By Nearly 50

first_imgWILMINGTON, MA — Wilmington Recreation Director Karen Campbell was in front of the Wilmington Board of Selectmen at their Monday, June 10, 2019 meeting to provide an update on happenings within the town’s Recreation Department.Campbell highlighted the Recreation Department’s popular summer playground program.“225 children are enrolled. It is full and we’ve started a wait list. We have 15 more children participating than last year,” said Campbell. “We have unbelievable supervisors running a great program, which is in its 48th year.”Campbell also praised her Department’s longstanding Tiny Tots and Kids Club programs.“They have a June 24 kickoff. The programs have unbelievable staff… The programs have been going for 43 years,” added Campbell.Campbell highlighted many of the youth activities offered this summer, including kayaking, sailing, cooking, crafts, STEM programming, comedy classes, and magic classes, as well as all the standard sports — basketball, tennis, and multi-sports clinics. Campbell was especially excited about a new sports offering — mountain biking, where kids will ride in the conservation lands behind Mill Street and Eleanor Estates, as well as the in the Town Forest.“It will be nice to the kids to explore more of Wilmington and be outside, away from screens,” said Campbell.Campbell then ran down an array of adult program offerings, including tennis, pickle-ball, golf, yoga, crafts and an assortment of trips, which are detailed HERE.“Those that come on our [day trips] don’t have to worry about traffic or parking,” said Campbell. “It’s a great opportunity to see great shows in great seats.”Campbell noted that the Department offers tickets to Six Flags, Canobie Lake Park, Water Country, and – new this summer – a Whale Watch.Campbell noted that the Concerts on the Common begin on Wednesday, July 10 with Ball in the House and run for four consecutive Wednesday nights from 6:30pm to 8pm. The lineup can be seen HERE.Campbell noted that Town Beach opened over the weekend.“We have a great new staff. We’ve increased our staff of lifeguards. We have 19 guards this summer, up from 13 last year… We have 4 gate attendants as well,” explained Campbell, who stated the increase in staffing will help with capacity issues.Campbell invited the public to the Annual Police Beach Day at Town Beach on Thursday, August 1, 2019, from 11am to 2pm. Wilmington Police Officers will be behind the grill providing food, while the Recreation Department organizes a DJ, sand castle contest, and other fun activities.Campbell also noted the new netting is going up at the Yentile Farm Recreational Facility.“If the new net saves one ball from striking a windshield of a car going by on Route 38, it’s worth it,” said Campbell.Selectmen praised Campbell and her staff from the depth and breadth of the Recreation Department’s summer offerings.“The Rec Department is one of the many reasons Wilmington is such an awesome town,” said Selectwoman Jomarie O’Mahony. “It’s amazing to have such a jam-packed schedule.  We really appreciate you as a resource and asset.”Several Selectmen were also happy to see the increase in lifeguards.“I’m real excited about having plenty of lifeguards this year,” said Selectman Greg Bendel. “And that’s a credit to you and your department. I know you started seeking out lifeguards the day after summer ended last year.”Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedWILMINGTON RECREATION: Concerts, Trips & Youth Programs Were Huge Hits This SummerIn “Community”(GOOSE) POOP HAPPENS: Town Beach Has Successful Season Despite 16-Day Swimming Ban Due To High BacteriaIn “Government”Town Officials Discuss Creating A SPLASH PAD In WilmingtonIn “Community”last_img read more

State Senator Bruce Tarr Supports Interlock Devices For FirstTime OUI Offenders

first_imgBOSTON, MA — Below is a statement from State Senator Bruce Tarr regarding his attempts to reduce drunk driving and permit the use of interlock devices for first-time offenders. Massachusetts now stands alone as the only state that does not have a law for these offenders:“Now is the time to authorize the use of interlock devices for first-time OUI offenders. We have already waited too long to authorize this important tool which can prevent tragedy on our state’s roadways. While we can no longer avoid being the last state in the nation to adopt this smart approach to public safety, we still have an obligation to take action now so that we can stem the pain and harm from the senseless loss of life at the hands of a drunk driver that could have been prevented with time-tested and road tested technology.Federal government data shows that interlocks reduce repeat drunk driving offenses by 67 percent. I urge the Joint Committee on Transportation to move in the right direction with legislation that is before them.”Tarr also noted that Massachusetts requires interlocks for all REPEAT offenders. According to Mothers Against Drunk Driving, 2016 and 2018 studies found that states with first-time offender ignition interlock laws saw drunk driving deaths decrease by 15 and 16 percent. Over the past dozen years, interlocks have prevented over 39,000 attempts to drive drunk in Massachusetts.Like Wilmington Apple on Facebook. Follow Wilmington Apple on Twitter. Follow Wilmington Apple on Instagram. Subscribe to Wilmington Apple’s daily email newsletter HERE. Got a comment, question, photo, press release, or news tip? Email wilmingtonapple@gmail.com.Share this:TwitterFacebookLike this:Like Loading… RelatedState Senator Bruce Tarr’s Bill Honors World War II Era Cadet NursesIn “Government”Tarr, Robertson & Gordon Secure $30,000 In State Funding For Wilmington Senior Center ImprovementsIn “Government”State Senator Bruce Tarr Reminds Residents Of Animal Welfare Laws & Pets Left In Warm CarsIn “Government”last_img read more

Elacs Carina speaker shaping up to be designer Andrew Jones next hit

first_imgElac Speaker designer Andrew Jones has unveiled his latest Elac series and it is the first to incorporate the company’s iconic “Jet” folded tweeter. And based on my time with it, for such a small design it had a big, big sound.The Carina series is the step-up from the excellent Uni-Fi range and consists of three products: the BS243.4 bookshelf ($1,200), the FS247.4 floorstander ($2,400) and the CC241.4 center channel ($TBC).Jones is best known for his three-way concentric designs and told me that it was a challenge to try incorporating a tweeter he hadn’t worked with before in a simpler two-way speaker (treble and mid/bass).All of the speakers are based on 5.25-inch aluminum drivers and Jones told me he sourced a different folded tweeter from the one the company typically uses to keep costs down. The BS243.4 bookshelf features a bass reflex located on the bottom of the speaker and this in combination with the tweeter achieves a frequency range of 46Hz to 30kHz.Ears-oncarina Ty Pendlebury/CNET Jones treated me to a demo of the still-in-development speaker, and despite the change from a dome tweeter to the Jet, the design unmistakably bore his signature sound. It had an ultra-wide sound stage that enveloped the room with just a slight forwardness in the upper mids, though without harshness or brightness. For a small speaker with a 5.25-inch driver, the bass was impressively deep and punchy.When Andrew first demonstrated the Uni-Fi speaker at CES 2016, the song that blew me away was Rage Against The Machine’s Killing in the Name Of. Played through the Carina, I got a similar case of the chills. The opening chunk-chunk-chunks sounded compact in a way I hadn’t heard before, and this made the transition to Zack de la Rocha’s “killing in the name of” and the band’s all-in onslaught all the more surprising and goose bump inducing. The speakers aren’t yet done, and as music played I could almost hear his brain working on the changes he wants to make. As the Carinas are now though, they look good, sound like a Jones design and the price is reasonable for a high-end speaker. Look out for the Carina range in mid-2019. 27 Photos Share your voice CES 2019: See all of CNET’s coverage of the year’s biggest tech show.CES schedule: It’s six days of jam-packed events. Here’s what to expect. Comments CES 2019 Speakers 3 Tags Best new headphones of CES 2019 CES Productslast_img read more

Google Assistant is making a run for Alexa The 359 Ep 516

first_img Turo is kind of like Uber meets Airbnb: You borrow someone’s car, but you do all the driving. I’ve used it many times and found it a great alternative to traditional car-rental services — in part because you get to choose exactly the vehicle you want (not just, say, “midsize”) and in part because you can often do pickup and dropoff right outside baggage claim.Between now and Sept. 1, the first 300 people to check out can get $30 off any Turo rental with promo code LDW30. $299 at Amazon DJI’s answer to GoPro’s action cameras is rugged little model that’s shockproof, dustproof and waterproof down to 11 meters. It normally runs $350, but this deal drops it to $261 when you apply promo code 19LABOR10 at checkout. 5:21 Share your voice 0 Subscribe: iTunes | RSS | Google Play | FeedBurner | SoundCloud |TuneIn | Stitcher The Cheapskate Apple iPhone XS Apple AirPods with Wireless Charging Case: $155 (save $45) Turo: Save $30 on any car rental See It CNET On this podcast, we talk about:Google’s ambitions to teach its Assistant more sophisticated tricks. Spotify buys Gimlet and Anchor, two podcasting companies. Apple’s retail chief, Angela Ahrendts, announces departure. Google Assistant Alexa Google Spotify,I’m shocked — shocked! — to learn that stores are turning Labor Day into an excuse to sell stuff. Wait — no, I’m not. As much as I respect the original intent of the holiday (which became official back in 1894), to most of us, it’s just a bonus day off — one that’s blissfully tacked onto a weekend. So, yeah, stores; go ahead, run your sales. I’m listening. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Labor Day doesn’t bring out bargains to compete with the likes of Black Friday (which will be here before you know it), but there are definitely some sales worth your time.For example:We’ve rounded up the best Labor Day mattress deals.We’ve also gathered the best Labor Day laptop deals at Best Buy.The 2019 Vizio P Series Quantum is back under $999.Be sure to check out Amazon’s roughly three dozen Labor Day deals on TVs and audio. Google Express is having a big sale as well, one that includes deals on game consoles, AirPods, iPhones, laptops and more.Below I’ve rounded up a handful of individual items I consider to be the cream of the crop, followed by a handy reference guide to other Labor Day sales. Keep in mind, of course, that products may sell out at any time, even if the sale itself is still running. Note that CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of the products featured on this page. $59 at eBay I thought this might be a mistake, but, no, the weirdly named HP Laptop 15t Value is indeed quite the value at this price. Specs include an Intel Core i7 processor, 12GB of RAM, a 256GB solid-state drive and a 15.6-inch display. However, I strongly recommend paying an extra $50 to upgrade that display to FHD (1,920×1,080), because you’re not likely to be happy with the native 1,366×768 resolution. Turo Share your voice See it Spotify and most other streaming services rely on compressed audio, which robs the listener of full fidelity. Enter Tidal, the only “major” service that delivers lossless audio — meaning at least on par with CD quality, if not better. Want to see (er, hear) the difference for yourself? Grab this excellent extended trial while you can. It’s just $6 for three months, and it’s good for up to six listeners. The 3:59 gives you bite-size news and analysis about the top stories of the day, brought to you by the CNET News team in New York and producer Bryan VanGelder.Check out the extended shows on YouTube. Also, don’t forget to rate and review the podcast on iTunes. Google Assistant is making a run for Alexa (The 3:59, Ep. 516) Rylo An Echo Dot makes a fine match for any Fire edition TV, because you can use the latter to say things like, “Alexa, turn on the TV.” Right now, the 24-inch Insignia Fire TV Edition starts at just $100, while the 32-inch Toshiba Fire TV Editions is on sale for $130. Just add any Fire TV Edition to your cart, then add a third-gen Echo Dot, and presto: The latter is free. $60 at Best Buy Rylo 5.8K 360 Video Camera: $250 (save $250) $210 at Best Buy Chris Monroe/CNET Lenovo Smart Clock: $59.99 (save $20) JBL Soundgear wearable speaker: $90 (save $160) What’s cooler: A snapshot of a firework exploding in front of you, or full 360-degree video of all the fireworks and all the reactions to seeing them? Oooh, ahhh, indeed. At $250, the compact Rylo dual-lens camera is selling for its lowest price yet. And for an extra $50, you can get the bundle that includes the waterproof housing.This deal runs through Sept. 3; it usually costs $500. TVs Speakers Mobile Accessories Cameras Laptops Automobiles Smart Speakers & Displays $6 at Tidal Other Labor Day sales you should check out Best Buy: In addition to some pretty solid MacBook deals that have been running for about a week already, Best Buy is offering up to 40% off major appliances like washers, dryers and stoves. There are also gift cards available with the purchase of select appliances. See it at Best BuyDell: Through Aug. 28, Dell is offering an extra 12% off various laptops, desktops and electronics. And check back starting Aug. 29 for a big batch of Labor Day doorbusters. See it at DellGlassesUSA: Aug. 29 – Sept. 3 only, you can save 65% on all frames with promo code labor65. See it at GlassesUSALenovo: The tech company is offering a large assortment of deals and doorbusters through Labor Day, with the promise of up to 56% off certain items — including, at this writing, the IdeaPad 730S laptop for $700 (save $300).See it at LenovoLensabl: Want to keep the frames you already love and paid for? Lensabl lets you mail them in for new lenses, based on your prescription. From now through Sept. 2 only, you can save 20% on the blue light-blocking lens option with promo code BLOCKBLUE. See it at LensablSears: Between now and Sept. 7, you can save up to 40% on appliances (plus an additional 10% if you shop online), up to 60% on mattresses, up to 50% on Craftsman products and more. The store is also offering some fairly hefty cashback bonuses. See it at SearsNote: This post was published previously and is continuously updated with new information.CNET’s Cheapskate scours the web for great deals on tech products and much more. For the latest deals and updates, follow the Cheapskate on Facebook and Twitter. Questions about the Cheapskate blog? Find the answers on our FAQ page, and find more great buys on the CNET Deals page. $90 at Daily Steals via Google Express Recently updated to include digital-photo-frame capabilities, the Lenovo Smart Clock brings Google Assistant goodness to your nightstand. It’s a little smaller than the Amazon Echo Show 5, but also a full $30 less (and tied with Prime Day pricing) during this Best Buy Labor Day sale. HP Laptop 15t Value: $520 (save $780) The problem with most entry-level laptops: They come with mechanical hard drives. That makes for a mighty slow Windows experience. This Lenovo model features a 128GB solid-state drive, so it should be pretty quick to boot and load software, even with its basic processor. Plus, it has a DVD-burner! That’s not something you see in many modern laptops, especially at this price. Free Echo Dot with an Insignia or Toshiba TV (save $50) $155 at Google Express See at Turo Read Google Home Hub review Preview • iPhone XS is the new $1,000 iPhone X Boost Mobile CNET may get a commission from retail offers. Though not technically a Labor Day sale, it’s happening during Labor Day sale season — and it’s too good not to share. Nationwide Distributors, via Google Express, has just about the best AirPods deal we’ve seen (when you apply promo code ZBEDWZ at checkout). This is for the second-gen AirPods with the wireless charging case. Can’t imagine these will last long at this price, so if you’re interested, act fast. Sarah Tew/CNET Read the AirPods review $999 See at Amazon Formerly known as the Google Home Hub, Google’s Nest Hub packs a wealth of Google Assistant goodness into a 7-inch screen. At $59, this is within a buck of the best price we’ve seen. It lists for $129 and sells elsewhere in the $89-to-$99 range.This is one item of many available as part of eBay’s Labor Day Sale (which, at this writing, doesn’t specifically mention Labor Day, but that’s how it was pitched to us). DJI Osmo Action camera: $261 (save $89) Read the Rylo camera preview $999 Lenovo 130-15AST 15.6-inch laptop: $210 (save $90) Now playing: Watch this: $999 $999 Tags Use promo code 19LABOR10 to get an unusually good deal on JBL’s interesting hybrid product — not quite headphones, and not quite a traditional speaker, but something you wear like neckphones to listen to music on the go. Tidal 3-month family subscription: $5.99 (save $54) Comments Angela Lang/CNET Sarah Tew/CNET Mentioned Above Apple iPhone XS (64GB, space gray) Best Buy The Daily Charge Google Nest Hub: $59 (save $70) Google Assistant is making a run for Alexa (The 3:59,… Sprint Post a comment Review • iPhone XS review, updated: A few luxury upgrades over the XR Audio Smart Speakers & Displays Read Lenovo Smart Clock review See It Best laptops for college students: We’ve got an affordable laptop for every student. Best live TV streaming services: Ditch your cable company but keep the live channels and DVR. See It Sarah Tew/CNET $261 at Daily Steals via Google Express Sarah Tew/CNET 7 $520 at HP Tags Read DJI Osmo Action preview Your browser does not support the audio element. Amazonlast_img read more