White House eyes executive action to keep unemployment benefits flowing

The White House is considering executive action to provide more money for unemployment benefits, following the exhaustion of funds made available by President Trump’s previous administrative maneuvering.

“We’re looking at all possible avenues to continue giving relief to Americans from an executive standpoint, in lieu of Democrats agreeing to a legislative deal,” said Ben Williamson, a senior adviser for Mark Meadows, Trump’s chief of staff.

Trump, through a memorandum in August, made available up to $44 billion from the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s Disaster Relief Fund to provide assistance to workers sidelined by the pandemic in the form of a $300-a-week federal boost to unemployment benefits, to be matched by $100 from state governments. The additional jobless aid is known as Lost Wages Assistance.

Over $30 billion of those dollars have already been distributed. With money running low, the agency has said that total funding will be limited to six weeks, in total, for every state that has applied so far, a spokesman told the Washington Examiner. The administration has had to start cutting off certain states, including Texas, Iowa, Montana, Tennessee, and New Hampshire.

The impetus behind Trump’s executive order on the enhanced payment was Congress’s inability to extend added unemployment benefits, which had been enacted in the March CARES Act at a rate of $600 a week. The program has been expired for over a month. Lawmakers in both parties support extending the enhanced benefit, but they have so far failed to agree on a dollar amount for the payment.

The White House is considering using an executive order to authorize FEMA to provide more assistance to states by making additional funds available to them through the $300-a-week federal boost to unemployment benefits, a former senior administration official said. This would allow more FEMA funds to be used after the current $44 billion is exhausted.

There is a fear, however, of overusing FEMA’s funds and leaving the agency vulnerable as it deals with hurricane season as well as the wildfires on the West Coast.

“I take what the administration is doing as a good-faith effort to give assistance to people who haven’t had work for many weeks,” said Matt Weidinger, a fellow who focuses on unemployment and poverty at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank.

“I’m sure every unemployed person would like to keep getting an additional $300 every week,” Weidinger said.

He said, however, that any potential executive actions to provide more unemployment aid could affect the incentives to return to work and would add to the debt in a harmful manner.

Until the $44 billion in additional unemployment aid is exhausted, FEMA will continue working with states to provide jobless help.

“On August 8, President Trump took decisive and unprecedented action to help unemployed Americans due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” FEMA press secretary Lizzie Litzow told the Washington Examiner. “FEMA continues to work with states and territories to fulfill their requests for six weeks of Lost Wages Assistance.”

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White House puts off action on surprise medical bills, punts to Congress

The White House is putting off executive action to crack down on surprise medical bills, instead calling on Congress to act on the issue.  

The Trump administration had been working on a potentially far-reaching proposal to protect patients from getting stuck with massive “surprise” medical bills when they get care from a doctor who happened to be outside their insurance network, according to people familiar with the plans. 

But after pushback from health care provider groups, GOP lawmakers, and debate within the administration, the White House is instead issuing a much more limited executive order simply calling on Congress to act on the issue. 

Reining in surprise medical bills has been a priority for both parties for months, and is seen as a key patient protection.  

The order released Thursday calls on the administration to take executive action if Congress does not act by Jan. 1, but it does not specify what that action would be, Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar said on a press call. 

The announcement comes as part of a speech President TrumpDonald John TrumpBiden on Trump’s refusal to commit to peaceful transfer of power: ‘What country are we in?’ Romney: ‘Unthinkable and unacceptable’ to not commit to peaceful transition of power Two Louisville police officers shot amid Breonna Taylor grand jury protests MORE is making Thursday afternoon in North Carolina, where he is seeking to tout his record on health care, an issue where Republicans are being battered by Democrats, ahead of the election. 

The White House had been considering a surprise billing order that would have been the more substantive part of the announcement, coupled with a largely symbolic order on pre-existing conditions. 

But the surprise billing order is now essentially punting the issue to Congress, where both parties have been calling for action for over a year, but nothing has yet passed. 

The White House declined to comment on changes to the surprise billing order.  

One of the options that had been considered, sources say, was an executive order to ban health care providers from surprise billing patients as a condition of participating in the Medicare program, a serious enforcement stick.  

Health care providers pushed back on that idea with the administration, according to a lobbyist. 

Some GOP lawmakers, including members of the conservative Republican Study Committee in the House, also pushed back on the surprise billing ideas being discussed by the White House, according to a House GOP aide. Conservative outside groups also contacted the White House to object. 

There was also internal debate on the issue within the administration, according to an administration official.  

The result is a far narrower order that simply calls on Congress to keep working on the issue. Lawmakers have so far been unable to reach agreement, despite support for taking action from both parties, amid a variety of turf battles between committees and lobbying from powerful doctor and hospital groups, including some backed by private equity companies. 

Azar said on the press call

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Country Garden Forest City Released the Ecological Development Action Plan to Create a Green and Ecological Future City

JOHOR BAHRU, Malaysia, Sept. 21, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — On 21st September, Country Garden Forest City published Forest City Ecological Development Action Plan, which outlined the mission of Forest City ecological development, and clearly defined the goals and targets of eco city development, operation and management in phases. Following this plan, Forest City will carry out green infrastructure development as a foundation, leverage on high-tech industries to enhance urban economic development, and eventually become a green and vibrant city with diversified industries and cultures. On the same day, Forest City Eco Museum Phase 1 exhibition hall was officially opened. 

Forest City Eco Museum

The Forest City Eco-Museum, which is located beside the beach of Forest City, is open for public today. The eco museum adheres to an open concept and breaks through the limitations of traditional museums. It integrates outdoor greeneries, ecological corridor, seagrass conservation areas, exhibition halls and laboratories into one system, and creates an immersive experience for the visitors with a real scene eco system.

Phase 1 of the museum, comprising of an exhibition hall, a laboratory building and part of the eco corridor, have already been completed. Over 100 biological samples are displayed in the exhibition hall to showcase the rich marine ecosystem around Forest City, its sustainable development mission and the environmental protection achievements over the past years. The laboratory will be used as a research and education center to facilitate the R&D and educational works of the research institutions and universities around Forest City. Meanwhile, phase 2 construction has started while phase 3 is under planning.

Forest City Eco Museum Phase 1 Exhibition Hall

On the same day, Forest City published Forest City Ecological Development Action Plan which outlined the goals and targets of eco city development, operation and management from the start of project development in 2014 towards the future. Following this plan, Forest City will carry out green infrastructure development as a foundation, leverage on high-tech industries to enhance urban economic development, and eventually become a green and vibrant city with diversified industries and cultures.

The newly published Forest City Ecological Development Action Plan encompasses three phases, for each phase, there will be a set of development indicators set out from the areas of “Industry, City, and People” in urban operations.

Phase 1, from 2014 to 2019, is the basic stage of the urban green ecosystem development, applying environmental concept throughout the urban planning, development, construction, and city operations. Forest City has never stopped its investment in green development, from the environmental assessment at the beginning of project, to multiple environmental measures such as the set-up of double layer silt curtain during the reclamation work, the establishment of enterprise-level environmental management system, mangrove conservation via satellite sensing and daily patrols, seagrass conservation and hydrological dynamic monitoring, just to minimize the environmental impact during the development. Forest City has also established long-term cooperation with research institutions and universities to carry out scientific monitoring and analysis of the natural environment around Forest City, providing scientific support for effective recovery and maintenance of the ecosystem.

Since 2016,

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RSA murderer William Bell takes action against Corrections after losing kitchen job amid hostage allegation

William Bell during his court appearances for the RSA murders, in 2001.

Stuff

William Bell during his court appearances for the RSA murders, in 2001.

Triple murderer William Bell is taking legal action against Corrections after allegations that he planned to kidnap a female prison staffer saw him lose his kitchen job.

Bell is serving New Zealand’s longest minimum non-parole period, 30 years, on a life sentence for the murders of William Absolum, Wayne Johnson and Mary Hobson, and the attempted murder of Susan Couch, during an aggravated robbery of the Mount Wellington Panmure RSA in 2001.

Bell had been working towards an NCEA qualification in Auckland Prison’s new state-of-the-art kitchen when he was moved from the role. Stuff understands a former prisoner called Crimestoppers alleging Bell had plotted to take a hostage.

Corrections’ suspicions were further raised after an officer found a note in Bell’s cell with reference to a remote-controlled toy helicopter.

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Bell denies the allegations. Police wouldn’t confirm whether the allegation was the subject of a criminal investigation citing privacy reasons.

Corrections confirmed Bell had been moved to a different type of employment within the prison – understood to be the laundry – but said of the allegation, “there has been no threat to the wider security of the prison and no threat to public safety at any time”.

It’s understood Bell was classed as a low-medium security prisoner but that rating was increased to maximum before being dropped again by Corrections.

Bell filed an application in the High Court at Auckland for a judicial review of the rating before it was reduced, but it’s understood Bell is continuing with the legal action as Corrections hasn’t reinstated him in the kitchen.

The matter will be in court on Monday and Bell will appear remotely. The court has appointed an amicus curiae to assist him.

Up to 50 Auckland Prison inmates work in the kitchen cooking for other inmates, and can work towards gaining an NCEA qualification in hospitality and catering. They work under Corrections staff supervision in the new, modern kitchen, built under the $300m upgrade of the prison, which was finished in 2018.

Bell’s mother, Georgina Tahana, said Bell was extremely disappointed after losing a job he loved. Security classifications can inform parole reports, and the types of rehabilitation programmes available to inmates.

“He was trying, and he was motivated. He was so proud. He was really, really enjoying what he was doing. He would say, ‘so what are you having for lunch, what’s for dinner, here’s what you can do’. I know what it’s like when you want to do something and you want to make a good job of it. I don’t know why (Corrections) did this,” she said.

A security classification is given to prisoners serving a sentence of more than three months, and is meant to convey an escape risk,

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6 Action Process on How to Design Your Bathroom

The bathroom is such a cozy place for us. In fact, it has been given the name 'restroom'. Isn't the name perfect! According to me perfectly alright! These days the bathrooms are designed with more meticulousness and people are ready to pay a big amount for it; and why not? One earns to spend the way one wants. Here is a six action process to help you design your 'Home Sweet Home':

Developing Ideas: Before we begin any process, we first of all jot down all the rough ideas that come to our mind. So, if we can get the best of the ideas for other things then why not for designing our bathroom also. So, what are you waiting for? Let us take a piece of paper and a pen to write all the unique and different ideas which rule your mind.

Online 3D Space Planning: Technology is a blessing. It has given us almost every material thing and can help us predict the things better in many ways. One of them is getting the things designed on the system with the help of some software and see how it would look like if finalized. We have software with 3-dimensional impact to plan the design of the bathroom. Space can this way be utilized well as bathroom is comparatively smaller than other rooms.

Researching the Electronic or Print Media: The Internet has become a great source to find out information on every topic. These days it is being used like never before. Everybody is fond of it for various reasons. We have the bathroom design ideas to search for. So, the next step is to make a thorough research on the internet or any other source like a magazine. This is crucial to know the latest trends in the market.

Consulting the Designer: The designer is a must if you want a very perfectly and professionally designed bathroom. You can definitely share your ideas and research that you have made until the last step of yours and you can ask him to customize the design as per your wish and your job is more than half done. Here it only involves the consultation with the designers and deciding which suits you best.

Calculating Budget: Now, this is time to calculate the budget as it would be a concern because you will select from multiple numbers of designers and the designer will not necessarily be pocket-friendly but according to your choice. So, calculation of budget is an astute decision as it will make you bring the things and articles listed by the designer.

The Final Execution: Here comes the final step to execute all the planned activities and give a shape to your imagination. The designer will do his work, the laborers will do their work and all the other people employed will do their work including you if you have planned any and soon your 'bathroom' will be ready to be called as the 'restroom'.

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