Bermuda are considered the weakest team in their group but Jamaica’s coach, Andrew Edwards, says they will not take them for granted when the teams face off in the opening Group A game of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) World Cup qualifiers at the Ato Boldon Stadium in Trinidad and Tobago today. “Even though they (Bermuda) are considered the weakest team in the group, it is our first game and your first game can be tricky sometimes but we are mindful of that. We want to defend very strongly from the start and score as many goals as we can in the event things are determined by goal difference,” coach Edwards told The Gleaner via telephone from Trinidad. He believes that if the team turns in a good performance and gets a good result it would put them in a favourable position at the end of the first match day, as hosts Trinidad will play Haiti in the group’s other game. “It can be an advantage (playing Bermuda first) and we have to see it that way. It will give us an opportunity to also look at the so called stronger teams in the group and make our technical plans for those games. We want to utilise that advantage to the very best,” he reasoned. The top two teams from the group will advance to the semi-finals, where they will go up against the top two teams from Group B, which includes Cuba, Curacao, Guadeloupe and Suriname. The best third placed team will complete the list of five teams to qualify for the 2017 CONCACAF Men’s Under-17 Championship from April 21 to May 7, 2017 in Panama.
The City Mayor of Kakata, Margibi County, Eddie Z. Murphy, has disclosed that the City needs US$1 million annually to have its city cleaned and place into its perfect perspective.“Based on our economic status, a million United States dollars annually can make this city clean and put all the systems into place. This will enable the city corporation to have a waste sector, sanitation sector, among others, and build the capacity of workers,” Mayor Murphy explained.Making the disclosure yesterday to newsmen at his office in Kakata, Mr. Murphy said there has been major progress in the cleaning of the city with the cooperation of the people within the various communities, homes and the business sector as well. “Our people are now seeing the cleaning of the city as key to good health and with the emphasis being made to them about the intention of the city’s authorities to ensure that we keep the city clean. We have also designed a lot of strategies to help in cleaning the city, while we take 16 tons of waste from the street every day,” Mayor Murphy explained.He further disclosed that NC-Sanitors and Services, a waste management company, has been performing excellently in ensuring that Kakata City is cleaned and hailed the company for the level of progress made since moving to Kakata to support the city corporation’s efforts.“This company is also employing young people within their various communities, which provide job opportunity but help clean the community as well. Managing waste is expensive but with such initiative and effort, Kakata will have a facelift with young people being employed,” Mayor Murphy said. He noted that the coming of the new sanitation regime remains helpful in maintaining and giving the city a facelift. The process, according to him, is being cemented by the community dwellers and other business people through cooperation and proper maintenance.“Since the coming of the group, before 6am, people wakeup in the morning and see the streets, business areas and some homes cleaned. They are also operating now in seven communities with a plan in two months to extend the campaign to other communities,” Mayor Murphy explained.He continued, “The communities include Vai Town-one and two; Mandingo Quarter; Cassava Market; and Sugar Hill, among others. We have started deploying garbage materials within these communities – close to 30 of them. The various communities will deposit their waste and will pay 250 Liberian dollars at the end of a month.”Mayor Murphy said the community dwellers have also embraced the idea of deploying these garbage materials to ensure that the city is cleaned. They are also playing their respective roles of monitoring each other as part of their commitment to the city corporation. Also highlighting some of the progress made, Mayor Murphy said they have completed negotiations of a land, which will be used for disposing of the waste from the various communities and negotiations for a truck has already been finalized and waiting to be turned over.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Massachusetts Looks To Other States For Website Fixes Among possible ways to resolve the continuing issues, state officials are contemplating the possibility of buying or leasing technology from states where the online insurance marketplace is working. They also are considering scrapping the current website and starting over. News outlets also track developments in Maryland, California and Illinois. The Associated Press: Mass Eyes States With Functioning Health WebsitesMassachusetts officials struggling to repair the state’s hobbled health care website said Friday they’re looking at the possibility of leasing or buying technology from states with functioning insurance sites. Officials said that while they’re speeding up the processing of insurance applications, the website still has serious flaws, and may ultimately be scrapped (LeBlanc, 3/7).WBUR: Despite Continued Health Site Troubles, Progress Made On Applicant BacklogMassachusetts health care officials struggling to repair the state’s hobbled website are looking at the possibility of leasing or buying technology from states with functioning insurance sites. Gov. Deval Patrick’s special assistant, Sarah Iselin, said Friday that looking for solutions from other states is just one of four options being weighed. Others include forging ahead with the current website contractor CGI Group, looking for a new vendor that would build on the existing site, or scrapping the website and starting over (3/7).Baltimore Sun: Federal Inspector To Audit Md. Insurance SiteA federal inspector general is launching a review into what went wrong with Maryland’s health insurance exchange, the first examination focused specifically on how millions of dollars in federal money was spent by the state, according to the lawmaker who requested the probe. Rep. Andy Harris, a Baltimore County Republican and vocal opponent of President Barack Obama’s health care law, said officials with the inspector general for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services had contacted him and indicated they will look into the creation of the state’s glitch-prone exchange (Fritze, 3/9).The Washington Post: Maryland Online Exchange Problems Cloud Doctor’s Vision For Health Care [Dr. Peter] Beilenson, a physician who has spent his career improving public health in Baltimore City and Howard County, used federal loans set aside for nonprofit insurance providers to launch Evergreen Health Co-op, a hybrid creation that provides insurance coverage and health centers. In the past, such a start-up could never have competed with industry giants such as Maryland-based CareFirst BlueCross BlueShield. Now, the online marketplaces mandated by the health-care law are supposed to make it easier for customers to browse plans and pick what best fits their needs. Evergreen’s business plan called for at least 10,000 enrollees its first year. But it has signed up only 650 since October (Johnson, 3/7).The San Jose Mercury News: Obamacare: Fifteen Percent Of Covered California Enrollees Haven’t PaidWith less than a month left to sign up for private insurance under the federal health care law, California’s enrollment numbers are closing in on the magic number of 1 million as 8,000 people sign up every day. If only everyone would pay their premiums. Roughly 15 percent of the Californians who had enrolled by Jan. 31 still haven’t sent in their first month’s payment, according to four major health insurance companies participating in the Covered California exchange. So those lofty enrollment numbers could soon be dropping substantially (Seipel, 3/9). The Associated Press/Washington Post: Tool To Compare Health Plans Tested With Consumers A website that offers Illinois consumers more information about insurance costs could help address widespread confusion about choosing a plan on the government sites that are a cornerstone of President Barack Obama’s health care law. It can be frustrating now to try to compare health plans on the government online marketplaces. For instance, the federal website that serves Illinois and 35 other states has no central directory to easily show which plans include which doctors in their networks (3/7).Also in the news, a look at the financial impact for middle class Californians of enrolling in a marketplace plan -The Sacramento Bee: In California, Middle Class Feels Health Insurance SqueezeIf (Dawn and Nick LaPolla of Fair Oaks) earn less than $94,200 a year, the family of four’s preferred plan through the California health exchange would cost about $750 a month. But if they make even slightly more, they’ll pay about $1,040. That’s because they would exceed the threshold to qualify for federal subsidies. Their current high-deductible plan, which expires in two months, costs $573 a month. Unlike wealthier state residents who more easily can afford the new, often more comprehensive plans, or lower-income people aided by government subsidies, the LaPollas are part of a sizable segment of Californians slowly coming to grips with dedicating a greater percentage of their income to new policies (Cadelago and Reese, 3/8). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.