Tag: officials

Hotel Lincoln demolition set to go before Metro Council, officials said item will be removed | Business

The demolition of the Hotel Lincoln is set to be introduced at Tuesday’s East Baton Rouge Metro Council meeting, but officials said plans are still underway to restore the historic property.

Anthony Kimble, who owns the hotel at 400 Eddie Robinson Sr. Drive, said the demolition item will be removed from the Metro Council agenda. The demolition was set for introduction Tuesday, then to go before the council for a vote December 9.

“It’s taken care of,” Kimble said.

Historic Hotel Lincoln renovation to start soon, plans to open in 2020; see renderings

The Hotel Lincoln catered to Black entertainers, such as Aretha Franklin, James Brown and B.B. King. Plans are in the works to turn the building into apartments and short-term rentals. The hotel, which opened in 1955, has been closed since the 1980s.

Hotel Lincoln re-developers seek tax incentive for $1.75M conversion into apartment, retail space

According to a report from a city parish building inspector filed with the agenda, the Hotel Lincoln was found to be “in a dilapidated and dangerous condition”.

Planning Commission to look at redevelopment of historic Hotel Lincoln where Aretha Franklin, James Brown and B.B. King stayed

Davis Rhorer, executive director of the Downtown Development District, said he spoke to Planning Director Ryan Holcomb about the demolition motion. Holcomb said the hotel had been secured and the item will be removed from the agenda, Rhorer said. The DDD has been supportive of efforts to get the Hotel Lincoln back in business.

Rhorer said the redevelopment of the hotel is still underway. “This is an important building,” he said.

Source Article

Continue reading

Despite officials’ warnings and pleas, travel over Thanksgiving is expected to hit a pandemic peak.

The nation’s health experts on Sunday pleaded with Americans to stay home over the Thanksgiving holiday and forgo any plans to travel or celebrate at large family gatherings, even as airports have recorded a significant rise in passengers.

Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the country’s top infectious disease specialist, and other health experts relayed a clear message on Sunday morning news shows: with coronavirus cases surging to record levels across the country, turning nearly every state into a hot zone of transmission, the risk of getting infected, whether in transit or in even small indoor gatherings, is high.

Up to 50 million people could be traveling on roads and through airports in the United States over Thanksgiving this year, according to AAA, the biggest travel surge since the pandemic began, despite strong cautions from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other health authorities. A video of a packed airport in Phoenix has been circulating widely on social media. As of Sunday, 47 states — all but Hawaii, Maine and Vermont — were considered high-risk zones for viral transmission, and nationwide hospitalizations were at a record 83,227.

“Please seriously consider decisions that you make,” Dr. Fauci said on the CBS show “Face the Nation.” Encountering large numbers of people in airports and on planes is particularly dangerous, he said. Although airlines have invested in air circulation and ventilation systems to minimize viral transmission, Dr. Fauci said, “sometimes when you get a crowded plane, or you’re in a crowded airport, you’re lining up, not everybody’s wearing masks — that puts yourself at risk.”

And gathering indoors, whether you travel or not, carries risk. “When you’re eating and drinking, obviously, you have to take your mask off,” Dr. Fauci said. “We know now that those are the kinds of situations that are leading to outbreaks.”

Dr. Tom Inglesby, director of the Center for Health Security of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said on Fox News on Sunday that because about half of infections are spread by people who don’t have any symptoms, “you can’t assume that you don’t have the virus, and you can’t assume that the people whose home you’re about to enter don’t have the virus, at this point in our pandemic.”

He recommended celebrating Thanksgiving only with the people you live with. People who choose to visit others’ homes should spend as much time as possible outdoors and “should be wearing masks indoors when they’re together, and only removing them when they’re eating.”

In Tulsa, Okla., Victory, a megachurch, canceled a “Friendsgiving” service on Sunday that had called on members to bring a friend after it prompted an outcry, instead opting to give away boxed meals, NBC News reported. The church did not respond to a request for comment regarding its planned “Thanksgiving Day Brunch,” which, according to its website, is set to be held on Thursday in the church’s cafeteria.

Dr. Fauci and others warned that Americans’ behavior over Thanksgiving would have critical implications for

Continue reading

Michigan GOP officials were pictured drinking champagne in the lobby of Trump’s luxury DC hotel after meeting the president to discuss attempts to overturn the election result



a close up of a train station: US flags are seen at the entrance to the Turmp International Hotel at Pennsylvania Avenue on the eve of the 2020 US presidential election Yegor AleyevTASS via Getty Images


© Yegor AleyevTASS via Getty Images
US flags are seen at the entrance to the Turmp International Hotel at Pennsylvania Avenue on the eve of the 2020 US presidential election Yegor AleyevTASS via Getty Images

  • Michigan GOP officials were pictured drinking Dom Perignon champagne in the lobby of President Trump’s luxury Washington DC hotel on Friday night. 
  • Hours earlier, the officials met Trump at the White House, amid the president’s campaign to pressure state officials to overturn the election result. 
  • In a joint statement after the meeting, state GOP leaders said they were not “made aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election in Michigan.” 
  • The lawmakers told CNN they had paid their own bills at the hotel. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Michigan Republican Party officials were pictured enjoying champagne in the lobby of President Donald Trump’s luxury Washington DC hotel after being hosted by the president at the White House.

Michigan House Speaker Lee Chatfield and other members of his group were pictured at Trump International Hotel in Washington DC Friday evening drinking Dom Perignon champagne in a lobby bar, in images acquired by the Detroit Free Press. 

Both Chatfield and Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey stayed overnight at the hotel, located a few blocks from the White House. Trump had earlier held a meeting with the lawmakers, reported CNN. 

 

The following morning, Shirkey and state Republican official Dan Lauwers were pictured leaving the hotel by Detroit News’ Washington correspondent Melissa Nana Burke. They did not answer any questions from her. 

In a tweet, a staffer for Democratic Michigan Rep. Dan Kildee accused the lawmakers pictured in the lobby of violating coronavirus guidelines, with none of the group wearing masks or observing social distancing. 

 

Spokespeople for Chatfield and Shirkey told CNN that the lawmakers had paid their own expenses at the hotel. 

 

The lawmakers did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Business Insider. 

Loading...

Load Error

Earlier on Friday, the lawmakers met Trump at the White House. Trump has continued his long-shot bid to overturn the election result by pressuring state Republican officials to delay certifying vote counts. Biden was projected winner in Michigan by media organizations more than two weeks ago. 

After the meeting, Chatfield and Shirkey in a joint statement said that they had not been “made aware of any information that would change the outcome of the election in Michigan” and said “as legislative leaders, we will follow the law and follow the normal process regarding Michigan’s electors, just as we have said throughout this election.”

They claimed that a coronavirus relief package for Michigan was the focus of their talks with the president. 

In response to the statement, Trump said in a tweet Saturday that evidence of fraud would be shown in court. 

“This is true, but much different than reported

Continue reading

Negative COVID-19 test ‘not a passport’ to travel, officials warn, as demand surges

California residents who think a negative coronavirus test gives them the greenlight to travel this holiday season should think again, officials say.



a group of people with luggage at an airport: A flight crew wearing personal protective equipment walks through Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)


© Provided by The LA Times
A flight crew wearing personal protective equipment walks through Tom Bradley International Terminal at LAX. (Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times)

Public health officials across the state are warning that using testing to justify hitting the road or gathering in other ways doesn’t work.

As California struggles amid an unprecedented surge in coronavirus cases, and Thanksgiving and other holidays are right around the corner, demand for testing in Los Angeles and San Francisco counties has skyrocketed. The same situation is playing out nationwide, straining testing sites that are running short of key supplies.

“We have seen the repeated failure of this type of testing strategy across the country, including in Washington, D.C.,” Dr. Grant Colfax, San Francisco’s director of health, said at a briefing this week. “A negative test cannot be an excuse to put yourself or others at risk.”

A person who tests negative can still carry the virus if it’s early in their infection, health officials say.

Testing “is an identifier at that moment,” Los Angeles County public health officer Dr. Muntu Davis said Thursday, noting that it isn’t a preventative measure nor a barometer for future illness.

Even before the statewide spike in cases, officials were strongly advising against nonessential travel. Anyone leaving the state or arriving from out of state should quarantine for 14 days, regardless of their test results, Davis said. Even the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is urging Americans to stay home.

San Francisco officials have asked residents not to misuse testing facilities in an effort to travel, adding that the services are intended for essential workers, those who are symptomatic or who have been exposed to the virus.

“If people need tests for any other reason — like travel or visiting — they need to go to their private provider,” the city said in a statement. “City resources cannot support testing for behaviors, such as travel and visits with extended family, that are currently not recommended during this surge.”

San Francisco currently tests about 6,000 people a day, with results available in one to two days, officials said.

Los Angeles officials stopped short of advising residents to avoid testing, but health officials warn that test results are merely a snapshot in time and not intended as a free pass to willfully disobey health orders or recommendations.

“Your test result that you got Saturday morning was from Thursday when you got tested, and it said, ‘On Thursday, you were negative,’ ” said Barbara Ferrer, Los Angeles County’s director of public health. “It says nothing about whether you’re still negative on Saturday.

“That’s actually a false sense of security. It’s a false narrative.”

Though testing demand has shot up in recent weeks, a spokeswoman for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said that capacity has not been reached at city sites. Officials anticipated the increased

Continue reading

Negative COVID test ‘not a passport’ to travel, officials warn

California residents who think a negative coronavirus test gives them the greenlight to travel this holiday season should think again, officials say.

Public health officials across the state are warning that using testing to justify hitting the road or gathering in other ways doesn’t work.

As California struggles amid an unprecedented surge in coronavirus cases, and Thanksgiving and other holidays are right around the corner, demand for testing in Los Angeles and San Francisco counties has skyrocketed. The same situation is playing out nationwide, straining testing sites that are running short of key supplies.

“We have seen the repeated failure of this type of testing strategy across the country, including in Washington, D.C.,” Dr. Grant Colfax, San Francisco’s director of health, said at a briefing this week. “A negative test cannot be an excuse to put yourself or others at risk.”

A person who tests negative can still carry the virus if it’s early in their infection, health officials say.

Testing “is an identifier at that moment,” Los Angeles County public health officer Dr. Muntu Davis said Thursday, noting that it isn’t a preventative measure nor a barometer for future illness.

Even before the statewide spike in cases, officials were strongly advising against nonessential travel. Anyone leaving the state or arriving from out of state should quarantine for 14 days, regardless of their test results, Davis said. Even the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is urging Americans to stay home.

San Francisco officials have asked residents not to misuse testing facilities in an effort to travel, adding that the services are intended for essential workers, those who are symptomatic or who have been exposed to the virus.

“If people need tests for any other reason — like travel or visiting — they need to go to their private provider,” the city said in a statement. “City resources cannot support testing for behaviors, such as travel and visits with extended family, that are currently not recommended during this surge.”

San Francisco currently tests about 6,000 people a day, with results available in one to two days, officials said.

Los Angeles officials stopped short of advising residents to avoid testing, but health officials warn that test results are merely a snapshot in time and not intended as a free pass to willfully disobey health orders or recommendations.

“Your test result that you got Saturday morning was from Thursday when you got tested, and it said, ‘On Thursday, you were negative,’ ” said Barbara Ferrer, Los Angeles County’s director of public health. “It says nothing about whether you’re still negative on Saturday.

“That’s actually a false sense of security. It’s a false narrative.”

Though testing demand has shot up in recent weeks, a spokeswoman for Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said that capacity has not been reached at city sites. Officials anticipated the increased interest, expanding hours and adding supplies.

The city is testing an average of 27,000 people a day, with a capacity to test about 34,000 people daily, the mayor’s

Continue reading

Officials approve plan for managing recreation on Madison River | News

Montana officials amended and approved new regulations intended to reduce crowding on the Madison River at a virtual meeting Wednesday, wrapping up a three-year long process.

The Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission spent six hours Wednesday hearing public comments and wrangling with proposed rules to limit commercial use on stretches of the Madison River. They voted unanimously to pass a version of the regulations drafted by Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks officials that will go into place in three parts.

The first part is about gathering data on noncommercial use and setting up a working group for the river. The second would put in place a cap on commercial use and the third would test restricting certain uses on certain days.

“Madison River recreation management is one of those issues where developing a solution that makes everyone happy is close to impossible,” said Eileen Ryce, FWP’s fisheries chief. “In developing a recommendation, our goal was to try and find some middle ground or a moderate approach that addresses the major concerns raised in public comment.”

Now that the regulations have passed the commission, they will go to the secretary of state’s office for filing, according to Becky Dockter, chief legal counsel for FWP. Commissioners said the rules would likely be filed by Dec. 15 and go into effect on Christmas Day.

FWP already drafted a series of rules reflecting recommendations found in petitions from the Fishing Outfitters Association of Montana (FOAM) and a coalition of the George Grant Chapter of Trout Unlimited, the Anaconda Sportsmen Association and the Skyline Sportsmen Association. The department collected more than 700 public comments on those proposals, then drafted its own set of recommendations.

To give FWP staff time to evaluate the effectiveness of the new rules, the approved regulations will be adopted in phases, according to Ryce. Each phase will be evaluated and regulations will receive a full review every five years.

In 2021, the commission plans to appoint a working group responsible for regulating commercial and non-commercial river users. The working group is expected to include a commissioner and a member of the Bureau of Land Management.

Additionally, in 2021, all non-commercial river users will have to report their trips to FWP officials through a system devised by the department. The department suggested it may track non-commercial recreation via sign-in boxes, rather than mandatory stamps, as petitioners had originally proposed. Trail cameras are also being considered. The data collected from the project will help inform future non-commercial river use management.

In 2022, FWP plans to set the number of guided trips allocated to commercial river users at 2019 or 2020 levels, choosing whichever is higher for the outfitter. The new working group will continue to develop and monitor caps on the number of guided trips allocated to outfitters.

Further caps would be enforced based on levels recommended by the working group and approved by the commission. Information gathered from the non-commercial reporting requirements will allow the department to draft any regulations restricting such

Continue reading

South Australia officials reject calls to stop Covid medi-hotel staff working multiple jobs | Australia news

South Australia’s police commissioner has said it would not be possible to run the state’s hotel quarantine program without allowing staff to work multiple jobs, despite the Victorian inquiry into the failures of its program specifically recommending staff hold only one posting.

South Australia has entered the first day of a six-day lockdown to prevent the further spread of a Covid-19 outbreak out of the Peppers quarantine hotel in Adelaide. There are now 23 cases associated with the outbreak after the virus transferred from a returned traveller from the UK to a cleaner, on to two security guards and then into the community.

Contact tracers in the state are now attempting to track down people who attended the Woodville Pizza Bar between 6 and 16 November, after it was revealed on Wednesday one of the two security guards also worked at the venue.

The path the virus took through casual workers in two high-risk settings echoes how the virus spread in Victoria at the start of its second wave, with the state’s hotel quarantine inquiry hearing of a security guard who continued to work both at the hotel and as an Uber driver while infectious.

The spread was partly put down to casual workers fearing they would not be paid if they needed to isolate. Eventually the Victorian and federal governments made payments to those needing to isolate while waiting for test results, or for the two-week infectious period.

A key recommendation of the interim report delivered by the head of Victoria’s inquiry, Jennifer Coate, earlier this month stipulated that “every effort must be made to ensure that all personnel working at the facility are not working across multiple quarantine sites and not working in other forms of employment”.

“Every effort should be made to have personnel working at quarantine facilities salaried employees with terms and conditions that address the possible need to self-isolate in the event of an infection or possible infection, or close contact exposure, together with all necessary supports, including the need to relocate if necessary and have a managed return to work,” the report recommended.

Under South Australia’s model for hotel quarantine, known as medi-hotels, the state has police at hotels, but also uses private security.

On Thursday, the South Australian health minister, Stephen Wade, said the health department and the SA police commissioner, Grant Stevens, had reviewed the findings in Victoria, but Stevens said it was an “unreasonable” expectation.

“They have mortgages to pay, they have other bills to pay, and this is simply a necessity in order for us to fulfil our obligations,” he said.

“They have lives beyond their responsibilities in any hotel, and we need to find that balance and it’s simply not possible for us to bring in the total number of people required to run this function in South Australia, and have them not participate in other activities that they consider necessary for their personal circumstances.”

Stevens argued it would mean people working in the system would need to isolate

Continue reading

VMRDA officials seal hotel in Vizag

In an early morning crackdown, officials of the Visakhapatnam Metropolitan Region Development Authority (VMRDA) sealed a hotel, located adjacent to Gurajada Open Air Theatre, at Siripuram here on Sunday on the charge that the proprietor Harshavardhan had got the lease extended in violation of the norms.

The leaseholder had got his lease extended by the erstwhile Visakhapatnam Urban Development Authority (VUDA) in 2015 reportedly in violation of the rules. The then VUDA Vice Chairman had extended the lease by nine years, without considering the fact that the State government had already rejected the plea for extension of licence/lease, according to the vacation notice issued by VMRDA.

The VMRDA officials seized the hotel and sealed it reportedly after issuing a notice saying that the leaseholder had got the lease extended in violation of the rules. The lease rent is very less and the revenue of VMRDA is down due to the pandemic situation. Fresh tenders would be called to allot the premises to the highest bidder as per the rules.The VMRDA officials are also believed to have said that since it was more than three years that the extension was given, a decision on further extension of the lease cannot be taken at the local level and only the State government is competent to deal with it. Mr. Harshavardhan reportedly is a Telugu Desam Party (TDP) sympathiser. It may be recalled that an employee of Mr. Harshavardhan’s restaurant at the airport had attacked the then Opposition Leader and Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy with a knife at Visakahaptnam Airport in October 2018.

“The lease for my hotel was renewed till 2024. I was not served any notice and last night, they got the notice printed, though it was a holiday on account of Deepavali, and pasted it on the gate. The land was leased to me and I had constructed the hotel building, after obtaining permission from VUDA, under PPP mode. I have paid all dues and I am not directly connected with any political party,” Mr. Harshavardhan told The Hindu.

Officials of the VMRDA could not be reached over the phone for a clarification.

Source Article

Continue reading

Canadian Officials Concerned with Raptors’ Cross-Border Travel Amid Pandemic | Bleacher Report

Toronto Raptors' Marc Gasol, right, celebrates a basket against the Brooklyn Nets with Fred VanVleet, left, and Kyle Lowry during Game 1 of an NBA basketball first-round playoff series, Monday, Aug. 17, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (Kevin C. Cox/Pool Photo via AP)

Kevin C. Cox/Associated Press

Dr. Howard Njoo, Canada’s deputy chief of public health, said Friday the Toronto Raptors have presented a good plan to host games at Scotiabank Arena during the 2020-21 NBA season amid the COVID-19 pandemic but that cross-border travel between Canada and the United States “continues to be an issue,” per the Canadian Press.

Njoo also noted that following protocols that were in place during the league’s 2019-20 season finish at Walt Disney World would be “tough on everyone involved” since teams won’t be in isolation. The bubble was a resounding success, with zero positive COVID-19 cases emerging.

The Canada-United States border is closed to non-essential travel, and those who do cross the border are subject to a 14-day quarantine, per the Canadian Press.

If the Raptors cannot play their home games in Toronto, the Tampa, Florida, area will be their most likely backup option, per Michael Grange of Sportsnet.

Per Grange, the Raptors would need clearance from three levels of government to play in Toronto, which is the team’s clear preference.

If we can get it done in Toronto, we’d do it tomorrow,” a team executive told Grange.

COVID-19 cases in Ontario and the United States are on the rise. Per CBC, Ontario recorded a daily record of 1,575 new cases Thursday. According to the COVID Tracking Project, the United States had 150,526 cases Thursday, a daily record for the country.

A 72-game NBA season is scheduled to begin Dec. 22.

Continue reading

CA health officials issue COVID-19 travel advisory

If you were planning to travel for Thanksgiving, the State of California is asking you not to do so.

But if you must, the state Department of Public Health has issued a travel advisory urging travelers to the state to observe a 14-day self-quarantine upon arrival.

The advisory, which applies to California, Oregon and Washington, states that people traveling should limit their interactions to just those within their immediate household. The recommendation does not apply to those engaging in essential travel, such as those traveling for work, critical infrastructure support or for immediate medical care.

With coronavirus cases surging, the advisory encourages Californians to stay home or in their home region and to avoid non-essential travel to other states or countries.

“We’re encouraging Californians to stay close to home,to avoid non-essential travel to other states, and frankly, across the state, if that’s avoidable,“ said Health and Human Services Secretary Mark Ghaly during a Friday press conference.

The state is recommending that families engage in virtual gatherings as much as possible.

The state travel advisory, which is a recommendation and not mandatory, differs from the approach taken by the state of New York, which has issued a mandatory two-week quarantine period for all non-essential travelers from non-bordering states.

Ghaly stressed that the advisory was just that.

“It isn’t a ban. It isn’t a restriction. It’s an advisory,” Ghaly said. “(Yet) we certainly hope that the fact that it’s an advisory doesn’t lessen the voice and the emphasis on how important it is.”

Ghaly said that the state opted for a voluntary approach, instead of something more restrictive, in part because of Californians’ exhaustion with coronavirus lockdown orders. He has begun using the term “COVID resentment” to describe what some are experiencing.

He said state officials still hope that other measures they recommend, including wearing masks and avoiding mixing with members of multiple households, will avoid more restrictions that could hurt California businesses.

Ghaly said it would be difficult to police a state of 40 million people, and that the preferred approach is to work in partnership with Californians on voluntary measures.

“We are not looking today at a statewide stay-at-home order. We know many Californians are fatigued and tired,” Ghaly said. “All of that said, this is a quickly, rapidly evolving situation. Certainly these rates of rise are very concerning.”

Ghaly said self-quarantine means people should only have contact with immediate family members with whom they have regularly had contact. People in quarantine should not have in-person contact with others outside of their household, he said.

“This isn’t the time to put our guard down,” Ghaly said.

Related stories from Sacramento Bee

Andrew Sheeler covers California’s unique political climate for the Sacramento Bee. He has covered crime and politics from Interior Alaska to North Dakota’s oil patch to the rugged coast of southern Oregon. He attended the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Source Article

Continue reading