Tag: Rule

Tycoons and sports stars to be exempt from quarantine in controversial English travel rule

From Dec. 5, high-value business travelers will no longer need to self-isolate when returning to England from countries not in a travel corridor.

daniel leal-olivas/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images

Senior company executives, elite sportspeople, and television production staff are among those travelers who will be exempt from COVID-19 quarantine restrictions for international arrivals in England, the government has announced.

“From 4 a.m. on Sat 5th Dec high-value business travelers will no longer need to self-isolate when returning to ENGLAND from a country NOT in a travel corridor, allowing more travel to support the economy and jobs. Conditions apply,” transport secretary Grant Shapps said on Twitter

Under current rules, travelers from nonexempt countries have to quarantine for 14 days. However, from Dec. 15, they can cut this time to five days if they pay for a private coronavirus test under the government’s new Test to Release program. The tests will cost between £65 and £120.

Read: ‘Test to Release’ option can cut travelers’ quarantine time to five days — and make Christmas in England a possibility again

In a more detailed statement, the Department for Transport said that “individuals undertaking specific business activity which would deliver a significant benefit to the U.K. economy — including activity that creates or preserves 50+ U.K. jobs — will no longer need to self-isolate when traveling or returning from nonexempt countries.”

It added that all travelers, including those from exempt destinations, will still be required to show a complete passenger locator form on arrival into the U.K., unless they fall into a small group of exemptions.

The move was criticized by Jim McMahon, shadow transport secretary of the opposition Labour Party, who tweeted: “Are you loaded? No quarantine.

“I hope the virus has been made aware of the rules and keeps well away from them.”

Labour lawmaker Ben Bradshaw also slammed the move, tweeting: “Is this a joke? What Is high value?”

However, the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC), which represents the global travel and tourism private sector, welcomed the government’s initiative, saying the decision will bolster business travel and provide a significant boost to the fragile U.K. economy.

“Last year, international business travel contributed £7.5 billion ($10 billion) to the U.K. economy, which demonstrates how vital it will be to reviving the country’s battered economic fortunes,” said Gloria Guevara, WTTC President and Chief Executive.

The news lifted shares in British Airways owner International Consolidated Airlines
which rose 2.06%, while Ryanair

was up 1.22%, and easyJet

edged 0.81% higher in Friday morning trading in London.

New guidelines published by the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency on Dec. 2 suggest that there is no increased risk to the spread of COVID-19 from passengers arriving by air.

“Travelers should not be considered as a high-risk population, nor treated as contacts of COVID-19 cases, unless they have been in known contact with a confirmed positive case,” the guidelines said, adding:

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Welsh Covid travel rule changes unfair on pubs, say critics | UK news

The Welsh government is under fire over changes to its Covid travel rules that critics say will lead to people from Wales crossing the border for nights out in England.

From Friday, a rule that bans people from leaving Wales except for reasons such as work or education will be replaced with one that allows Welsh residents to go to tier 1 and 2 areas in England. At the same time a law comes into force that stops pubs and other licensed premises in Wales selling alcohol and forces them to close at 6pm.

Welsh pub owners said people from Wales were bound to travel into England for a drink and meal. Mark Jones, who runs the Stanton House Inn in Chirk, north Wales, said: “I’m just half a mile from the border. We’re going to close and I know some people from here will go to pubs in England. It isn’t fair.”

Ashley Rogers, the commercial director of a business council that covers north Wales, said: “It will put pubs in Wales at a competitive disadvantage. On the back of an awful year it could be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.”

Conservatives in the Welsh parliament called for the government to think again. Darren Millar, the shadow Covid recovery minister, said: “While any lifting of travel restrictions between Wales and England is to be welcomed, there can be no doubt that this news will rub salt in the wounds of the Welsh hospitality industry.

“With Welsh pubs, cafes and restaurants being banned from selling alcohol on their premises, many of their customers will be taking their custom and cash across the border to enjoy a tipple with a meal in England instead.

“The Welsh Labour-led government must rethink its new rules, engage with leaders the hospitality industry and adopt a more targeted approach to intervention that keeps the Welsh pound in Wales, and attracts the English pound into Welsh businesses too, especially in the run-up to Christmas.”

Asked if the rule change meant Welsh residents would be able to go to pubs in tiers 1 and 2 in England, a Welsh government spokesperson said there would be no legal restrictions, but added: “We strongly advise people in Wales not to travel into those parts of England and Scotland where the infection rate is lower, to help prevent them taking coronavirus with them.”

The changes mean people from tiers 1 and 2 in England can go on holiday to Wales. The spokesman said: “People in England living in tier 1 and 2 areas can enter Wales. However we are asking people to think carefully about their actions and the risk of spreading the virus. We continue to ask people to do what they should do, rather than what they can do under the law, in order to play their part in preventing the spread of coronavirus.”

Under the new rules for Wales travel to and from tier 3 areas in England, level 3 and 4 areas in Scotland

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Scugog makes recreation program rule changes due to COVID-19

SCUGOG: With the COVID-19 pandemic continuing to play a factor on day to day life in Ontario, the Township of Scugog has decided to make some sports and recreation related changes.

A township press release, posted on Thursday November 12th, stated “following the Province of Ontario’s order to move Durham Region to the Yellow– Protect level on November 7, 2020, the Township of Scugog will be supporting the government’s efforts to curtail the spread of COVID-19” by taking several actions.

One of these is to not allow anyone into the Scugog Community Recreation Centre without a reservation.

“All individual program participants will need to register online including skate programs, walking program and The Lookout youth centre,” the press release explained.

The township is also limiting the number of people in fitness classes to 10 people per room and increasing spacing to three metres for patrons in “areas of sport or recreation where there are exercise/fitness classes.”

Pickleball use will allow 12 participants using 3 courts, and play will be limited only to residents of Durham Region.

Earlier this month, the township also announced they will be keeping the Blackstock Arena on Church Street closed for the 2020/2021 ice season.

A township statement explains this decision was made “due to lack of ice demands and physical distancing challenges in the facility.”

“The main hall at the Blackstock Recreation Complex still remains available for facility bookings at this time,” the statement adds.

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N.J. sticks with 14-day quarantine travel advisory for coronavirus hot spots despite N.Y.’s rule change

New Jersey doesn’t plan to scrap its travel advisory calling for a 14-day quarantine for those arriving from coronavirus hot spots despite the announcement over the weekend that New York was ending its list and instead will require visitors from non-neighboring states to take a COVID-19 test, Gov. Phil Murphy said Monday.

Both states, along with Connecticut, have maintained a joint travel advisory for states with high COVID-19 infection rates. But New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Saturday it was dropping its list as coronavirus numbers continue to rise across the country.

New York is now requiring travelers from all non-neighboring states to test negative no more than three days before they enter. Those who arrive without proof of a negative test won’t be stopped from entering but will be required to quarantine for 14 days.

Even those who test negative will have to quarantine for three days after they arrive and then take a second test. If that’s also negative, they can cease their quarantine.

Cuomo admitted Saturday it had become increasingly difficult to enforce the travel advisory.

“The list started small and then the list got longer and longer and longer,” he said. “At one point, it was no longer a list, it was all-inclusive. Now, you don’t have a list.”

But Murphy said Monday there are no plans to make a similar change in New Jersey.

“We’re gonna stay with the current posture that we’ve got,” the governor said during his latest online coronavirus briefing.

Murphy stressed that the advisory does not apply to people who are crossing into neighboring states like Connecticut, Delaware, New York, and Pennsylvania for work or other essential reasons.

But he emphasized that people shouldn’t travel unless it’s necessary.

“We’re just asking people if you don’t have to travel, just flat out don’t travel. Period,” he said.

Things got awkward in New Jersey last month when New Jersey met the criteria to qualify for its own advisory. The Garden State has recorded 16 straight days of more than 1,000 new cases.

While violators of New York’s advisory have faced a possible $2,000 fine, New Jersey has never established fines. Instead, Murphy and other officials have asked people to practice “personal responsibility” and follow the order.

There are currently 41 states and territories on the quarantine list. Neighboring states — New York, Pennsylvania, and Delaware — are exempt from being on the list despite meeting the criteria.

New Jersey on Monday reported 1,379 more COVID-19 cases and three additional deaths. The state’s hospitals had more than 1,000 patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases for the sixth straight day, and the statewide rate of transmission decreased slightly to 1.28, but it remains above the key mark indicating the outbreak here is growing.

Thank you for relying on us to provide the journalism you can trust. Please consider supporting NJ.com with a subscription.

Brent Johnson may be reached at [email protected].

Matt Arco may be reached at [email protected].

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Fed And Treasury Asks Public For Comment On New Travel Rule For Crypto

The Federal Reserve, along with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Agency (FinCEN), an agency of the U.S. Treasury, have invited comment on a proposed rule that lowers the threshold on reporting under the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) from $3,000 to $250 for transactions outside of the United States in what is widely known as the ‘Travel Rule.’ Additionally, cryptocurrency transactions would also be required for both domestic and international reporting as the rule broadens the definition of money.

Bitcoin transactions have risen to $366 billion dollars in 2019 and $312 billion through in 2020 through August, according to the new rule. The Fed and FinCEN explains virtual assets will be defined as ‘money’ under the new proposed rule to include ‘convertible virtual currencies’ (CVC) and digital assets that are legal tender. FinCEN first addressed CVC with guidance issued in 2013 – notable in that it was the first U.S. agency to publicly address how crypto was to be regulated.

Jamison Sites, a Blockchain and Digital Asset Tax Lead at RSM, the world’s fifth-largest tax, auditing, and consulting firm in the U.S., stated, “The proposed rules give greater clarity and regulatory certainty to those operating with CVCs. This will be a positive for the industry.” According to Sites, the unintended consequence of the initial guidance that addressed cryptocurrency users was not simultaneously updating the travel rule, which the proposed rule would cure.

In 2019, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a powerful international body focused on preventing money laundering and terrorist activities, offered recommendations for countries to adopt a ‘travel rule’ as it is known in the U.S. to be applied to digital currencies with this release of new guidance. Specifically, information that is required to be recorded and transmitted with these transactions should include a customer’s name and address, the amount of the transaction, the execution date, and also the data of the recipient of the transaction as well.

Earlier this year, Michael Ou, CEO of CoolBitX, said, “The blockchain and cryptocurrency industry is at a major crossroad. As the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) continues to push its cryptocurrency guidance across the globe, compliance and preventing criminal activity can feel extremely daunting…The truth is, ‘Travel Rule’ compliance and blockchain analytics to track criminal activity are two sides of the same coin.” Ou spoke in reference to a partnership between the securities firm and Elliptic, a global leader in crypto asset risk management solutions.

The proposed rule from the Fed and FinCEN notes that, “Consistent with the FATF guidance, in May 2019, FinCEN issued guidance advising that CVC-based transfers effectuated by a nonbank financial institution may fall within the Recordkeeping and Travel Rules, on the grounds that such transfers involve the making of a ‘transmittal order’ by the sender” – i.e., an instruction to pay “a determinable amount of money to a recipient – a criterion for

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Americans Turn Hardline: 67% Want to Ban Interstate Travel, 68% Want Fines for Rule Breakers

Although America has a reputation for being rather libertarian with regards to personal rights and one’s freedom of movement, a new opinion poll by Rasmussen Reports shows that Americans are turning hardline in the face of the new and deadly Chinese coronavirus. Two out of three want to ban interstate travel and fine those who violate social distancing guidelines.

To be precise, 67% of likely U.S. voters say they want to ban all out-of-state travelers from entering their state — except for emergencies. A mere 21% are opposed, 12% are undecided. As for fining those who break social distancing guidelines: 68% support such a measure, while 20% oppose it and, again, 12% are not sure.

That’s all incredibly fascinating. But what’s even more interesting is this tidbit from the survey:

[T]here is virtually no difference of opinion on either question among Democrats, Republicans and voters not affiliated with either major political party.

So, yes, this opinion is widely held. Conservatives, liberals, ‘moderates’… They all agree that strict measures have to be taken.

The question now is: will more cities and even governors do what New York Mayor Bill de Blasio has done? In New York, police have been ordered to levy fines against rule-breakers, from $250 to $500. If Rasmussen is to be believed, a large majority of Americans want the see the same thing happen in their city (and state).

Of course, some will call on President Trump to do this, but America doesn’t have a top-down system. It’s bottom-up, not the other way around. This means that it’s up to local and state officials to make sure that their people are protected against this invisible killer. The federal government may have to get involved at a late date, but only and truly as a last resort, when the individual states can’t handle it.

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