CVPS reports increase in earnings for 2009

first_img Central Vermont Public Service Corporation – Consolidated Earnings Release (dollars in thousands, except per share amounts) Three Months Ended Twelve Months Ended December 31 December 31Condensed income statement 2009 2008 2009 2008 ———- ———- ———- ———-Operating revenues: Retail sales $ 71,997 $ 71,732 $ 277,529 $ 283,073 Resale sales 13,027 8,211 54,279 48,641 Provision for rate refund (561) (234) (1,689) (296) Other 2,490 2,975 11,979 10,744 ———- ———- ———- ———-Total operating revenues 86,953 82,684 342,098 342,162 ———- ———- ———- ———-Operating expenses: Purchased power – affiliates and other 40,091 41,132 157,982 165,451 Other operating expenses 44,084 42,059 160,195 153,403 Income tax expense 492 (947) 5,033 4,878 ———- ———- ———- ———-Total operating expense 84,667 82,244 323,210 323,732 ———- ———- ———- ———-Utility operating income 2,286 440 18,888 18,430 ———- ———- ———- ———-Other income: Equity in earnings of affiliates 4,276 4,022 17,472 16,264 Other, net 3 13 1,511 (879) Income tax expense (1,632) (1,512) (5,640) (5,862) ———- ———- ———- ———- Total other income 2,647 2,523 13,343 9,523 ———- ———- ———- ———-Interest expense 2,753 2,968 11,482 11,568 ———- ———- ———- ———-Net income 2,180 (5) 20,749 16,385Dividends declared on preferred stock 92 92 368 368 ———- ———- ———- ———-Earnings available for common stock $ 2,088 $ (97) $ 20,381 $ 16,017 ========== ========== ========== ==========Per common share dataEarnings per share of common stock – basic $ 0.18 $ (0.01) $ 1.75 $ 1.53Earnings per share of common stock – diluted $ 0.18 $ (0.01) $ 1.74 $ 1.52Average shares of common stock outstanding – basic 11,697,392 10,863,926 11,660,170 10,458,220Average shares of common stock outstanding – diluted 11,764,277 10,863,926 11,705,518 10,536,131Dividends declared per share of common stock $ 0.00 $ 0.00 $ 0.92 $ 0.92Dividends paid per share of common stock $ 0.23 $ 0.23 $ 0.92 $ 0.92Supplemental financial statement dataBalance sheet Investments in affiliates $ 129,733 $ 102,232 Total assets $ 632,152 $ 626,126 Notes Payable (reclassified to long-term debt) $ 0 $ 10,800 Common stock equity $ 231,423 $ 219,479 Long-term debt (excluding current portions) $ 201,611 $ 167,500Cash FlowsCash and cash equivalents at beginning of period $ 6,722 $ 3,803 Cash provided by operating activities 42,042 28,400 Cash used for investing activities (52,931) (40,498) Cash provided by financing activities 6,236 15,017 ———- ———- Cash and cash equivalents at end of period $ 2,069 $ 6,722 ========== ========== Refer to our annual 2009 Form 10-K for additional information.Source: RUTLAND, VT — (Marketwire) — 03/15/10 — CentralVermont Public Service (NYSE: CV) 2009 results compared to 2008Operating revenues decreased $0.1 million year-over-year, including a $5.5 million decrease in retail revenues, an increase of $1.4 million in the provision for rate refunds, partially offset by a $1.2 million increase in other operating revenues, and a $5.6 million increase in resale revenue. The decrease in retail revenues resulted from lower average usage resulting from the sluggish economy, energy conservation, and the loss of three commercial and industrial customers due to plant closures, partially offset by higher average unit prices due to customer usage mix. The provision for rate refund is related to the 2009 deferrals of over-collection of power, production and transmission costs as required by the power cost adjustment clause within our alternative regulation plan. The over-collection of power costs is being returned to retail customers through the second quarter of 2010. Other operating revenues increased primarily due to increased sales of transmission rights and renewable energy credits and increased wholesale rates. Resale revenues increased due to higher volumes of excess power available for resale, partially offset by lower average market prices.Purchased power expense decreased $7.5 million, primarily due to a $9.7 million reduction of short-term power purchases and a $3.9 million decrease in purchases from Independent Power Producers. These reductions were partially offset by an increase in other power costs of $6.1 million. This was primarily due to higher output at the Vermont Yankee plant in 2009 and because there were no refueling outages at the Vermont Yankee or Millstone III plants in 2009. Other operating expenses increased $6.8 million, primarily due to a $5.7 million increase in transmission expenses due to higher rates and higher costs from Vermont Transco LLC (“Transco”) for its capital projects, offset by higher NOATT reimbursements. Other increased costs included higher regulatory amortizations of $2.2 million, primarily related to the recovery of 2008 major storm costs, higher depreciation expense of $1.3 million, higher property taxes of $1.3 million and higher reserves for uncollectible accounts of $0.5 million. These higher costs were partially offset by a $3.8 million decrease in maintenance expenses, primarily due to lower service restoration costs. There were several major storms in 2008, but just one major storm in 2009.Equity in earnings of affiliates increased $1.2 million, principally due to the $3.1 million investment that we made in Transco in December 2008, and other accumulated adjustments. Other income, net increased $2.4 million, largely due to an increase in the cash surrender value of variable life insurance policies held in trust to fund a supplemental employee retirement plan.Fourth quarter 2009 results compared to 2008Fourth quarter operating revenues increased $4.3 million for many of the same reasons described above.Purchased power expense decreased $1 million for the same reasons described above. Short-term purchases decreased $5.9 million, partially offset by an increase in other purchases of $4.8 million.Other operating expenses increased $2 million, including a $2.4 million increase in transmission expenses, and for many of the same reasons described above. These higher costs were partially offset by lower maintenance costs for the same reasons described above.Equity in earnings of affiliates increased $0.3 million for the same reasons described above.2008 Common Stock IssuanceEarnings per share for 2009 reflect the impact of the November 2008 common stock issuance. On November 24, 2008, CV issued 1,190,000 shares, resulting in net proceeds of approximately $21.3 million. The net proceeds of the offering were used for general corporate purposes, including the repayment of debt, capital expenditures, investments in Transco and working capital requirements. The common stock issuance decreased per-diluted-share earnings by 18 cents in 2009. There was no significant impact to per-diluted-share earnings for the fourth quarter of 2009.2010 Financial GuidanceCV anticipates annual 2010 earnings to be in the range of $1.55 to $1.70 per diluted share. As part of the alternative regulation plan base rate filing approved by the Vermont Public Service Board, the company’s allowed rate of return for 2010 will be 9.59 percent, down from 9.77 percent for 2009.WebcastCV will host an earnings teleconference and webcast on March 15, 2010, beginning at 2 p.m. EDT. At that time, CV President and CEO Robert Young and CV Chief Financial Officer Pamela Keefe will discuss the company’s financial results, as well as progress made toward achieving the company’s long-term strategy.Interested parties may listen to the conference call live on the Internet by selecting the “CVPS Q4 2009 Earnings Call” link on the “Investor Relations” section of the company’s website at www.cvps.com(link is external). An audio archive of the call will be available later that day at the same location or by dialing 1-877-660-6853 within the U.S. or internationally by dialing 1-201-612-7415 and entering Account 286 and Conference ID 341962.About CVCV is Vermont’s largest electric utility, serving approximately 159,000 customers statewide. CV’s non-regulated subsidiary, Catamount Resources Corporation, sells and rents electric water heaters through a subsidiary, SmartEnergy Water Heating Services.Form 10-KOn Monday, March 15, 2010, the company filed its annual 2009 Form 10-K with the Securities and Exchange Commission. A copy of that report is available on our web site, www.cvps.com(link is external), under the “Investor Relations” section. Please refer to it for additional information regarding our condensed consolidated financial statements, results of operations, capital resources and liquidity. Central Vermont Public Service (NYSE: CV) reported consolidated earnings of $20.4 million, or $1.74 per diluted share of common stock, for the 12 months of 2009, compared to $16 million, or $1.52 per diluted share of common stock, for the same period in 2008.CV reported fourth-quarter 2009 consolidated earnings of $2.1 million, or 18 cents per diluted share of common stock, compared to a loss of $0.1 million, or 1 cent per diluted share of common stock, for the same period last year.”Perhaps most significant, Moody’s Investors Service rated the company at investment grade in the fourth quarter, markedly improving our borrowing capability,” President Bob Young said. “These ratings will allow CVPS to borrow short-term capital at lower rates than we could otherwise expect to receive, and will reduce or eliminate collateral requirements in many power purchase and power sales contracts, so this expands our options as we look to secure new power supply in the future.”We also plan to continue to make significant capital investments in our company and Vermont’s transmission system through Transco, providing customers with good reliability and investors with a solid return,” Young said.Financial Highlights– 2009 earnings of $20.4 million, or $1.74 per diluted share, 22 cents higher than 2008 — $0.1 million decrease in operating revenue — $7.5 million decrease in purchased power expense — $6.8 million increase in other operating expenses — $1.2 million increase in equity in earnings of affiliates — $2.4 million increase in other income, net– Fourth-quarter earnings of $2.1 million, or 18 cents per diluted share, 19 cents higher than 2008 — $4.3 million increase in operating revenue — $1.0 million decrease in purchased power expense — $2.0 million increase in other operating expenses — $0.3 million increase in equity in earnings of affiliates– Earnings for 2010 are forecasted to be in the range of $1.55 to $1.70 per diluted share Forward-Looking StatementsStatements contained in this press release that are not historical fact are forward-looking statements intended to qualify for the safe-harbors from the liability established by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Statements made that are not historical facts are forward-looking and, accordingly, involve estimates, assumptions, risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results or outcomes to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. Actual results will depend, among other things, upon the actions of regulators, performance of the Vermont Yankee nuclear power plant, effects of and changes in weather and economic conditions, volatility in wholesale electric markets, volatility in the financial markets, and our ability to maintain our current credit ratings. These and other risk factors are detailed in CV’s Securities and Exchange Commission filings. CV cannot predict the outcome of any of these matters; accordingly, there can be no assurance that such indicated results will be realized. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements that speak only as of the date of this press release. CV does not undertake any obligation to publicly release any revision to these forward-looking statements to reflect events or circumstances after the date of this press release. Reconciliation of Earnings Per Diluted Share Twelve Months Fourth Quarter 2009 vs. 2008 2009 vs. 2008 ————– ————–2008 Earnings per diluted share $ 1.52 $ (0.01)Year-over-Year Effects on Earnings: Lower purchased power expense 0.42 0.06 Higher equity in earnings of affiliates 0.09 0.02 Higher operating revenues 0.00 0.25 Higher transmission expense (0.32) (0.14) Common stock issuance (Nov. 2008) – 1,190,000 additional shares (0.18) 0.00 (Higher) lower other operating expenses (0.02) 0.01 Other (mostly variable life insurance) 0.23 (0.01) ————– ————–2009 Earnings per diluted share $ 1.74 $ 0.18 ============== ==============(a) The additional shares from the November 2008 stock issuance were excluded from the 11,764,277 average shares of common stock – diluted for the fourth quarter and the 11,705,518 average shares of common stock – diluted for the twelve months, for the purposes of computing the individual EPS variances shown above in order to provide comparable information for 2009 vs. 2008.last_img read more

Smithtown Highway Superintendent Arrested

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York The elected Superintendent of Highways for the Town of Smithtown was arrested Wednesday for allegedly covering up that a paving project he ordered had violated New York State regulations, authorities said.Glenn Jorgensen pleaded not guilty at Suffolk County court to felony charges of tampering with public records, falsisying business records and offering a false instrument for filing as well as a misdemeanor count of official misconduct.Prosecutors said the 63-year-old St. James man allegedly ordered road construction reports be altered to conceal his approval of paving of at least eight Smithtown streets in freezing temperatures in November, then directed a highway foreman to alter the records to misrepresent the weather conditions during the repaving work. The contractor was identified as Selden-based Suffolk Asphalt Corporation.“State Department of Transportation construction standards dictate asphalt must not be applied to a road surface in freezing temperatures, and in fact, the town’s own engineer has said repaving in freezing weather would result in the asphalt falling apart,” Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said.  “The repaving of a residential street doesn’t happen that often and when it does, residents are paying for a job done correctly, not a faulty repaving that will soon need pothole repair work.”Jorgensen allegedly stole the work order for the improper repaving and took the official documents home, where investigators found the records in his bedroom, under his bed, in his house on Hope Place, authorities said.Jorgensen’s Hauppauge-based attorney, Anthony La Pinta, maintained his client’s innocence.Jorgensen, who worked for the Smithtown highway department for 37 years, was elected in 2009 to lead a staff of 140 employees tasked with snow removal as well as paving, drainage and other maintenance of more than 450 miles of roads and curbs in the town. The department has a $30 million annual budget. He was re-elected two years ago.last_img read more

Derby manager Phillip Cocu self-isolating after CEO Stephen Pearce tests positive for coronavirus | Football News

first_imgpreview image Derby manager Phillip Cocu will not be in the dugout for his side’s match against Barnsley on Saturday after the club’s chief executive officer Stephen Pearce tested positive for coronavirus.Derby released a statement confirming Pearce has Covid-19 and after meetings with chairman Mel Morris and Cocu earlier on Thursday, all three will now self-isolate.- Advertisement – – Advertisement – “As a result of individual meetings with executive chairman Mel Morris CBE and manager Phillip Cocu over the course of today, they must also take part in a period of self-isolation, for 14-days, under UK Government and club protocol.“Derby’s first-team coaching staff will oversee Saturday’s Sky Bet Championship fixture at home to Barnsley in Cocu’s mandatory absence.”Assistant manager Chris van der Weerden is expected to lead the Rams alongside first-team coaches Twan Scheepers and Liam Rosenior. – Advertisement – “County can confirm that its chief executive officer, Stephen Pearce, has this evening (Thursday) tested positive for Covid-19 during a routine test,” said the statement.“Pearce is currently asymptomatic and, in line with UK Government and club protocol, will now self-isolate. Highlights of the Sky Bet Championship match between Derby and QPR 2:03 – Advertisement –last_img read more

Honor Flight treated vets like heroes

first_imgI was a hero, if just for one day, all because of the Leatherstocking Honor Flight.Buses full of Vietnam-era veterans pulled up to the Albany airport escorted by the Patriot Guard Riders. Inside the airport were a band, speeches and more greeters. What a send-off. Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion We flew to Baltimore and boarded buses to tour the monuments in D.C. Traffic was no problem because a motorcycle policeman ahead of us used his lights and siren to move the cars to the shoulders and let us pass. At the intersections, a police cruiser stopped traffic. We never had a red light all day.First stop was the Vietnam Memorial, where we laid a wreath and “Taps’ was played; then we looked for the names of soldiers we knew who had fallen. From there we were taken to Arlington National Cemetery to watch the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknowns. Don’t make a sound if you go there. We stayed the longest and took the most pictures at the World War II Memorial. Each monument evokes a different emotion. The grand tribute of the World War II Memorial celebrates a victory. Long perfect rows of markers at Arlington turn your thoughts inward. The black granite of the Vietnam wall reflects the futility of everything that went wrong in Vietnam.To visit all of them in one day would be impossible unless you were on the Leatherstocking Honor Flight. The planning and execution was unbelievable. For 90 of us, the first group of Vietnam-era veterans, the Honor Flight gave us a day we will always remember. The Patriot Guard Riders were there to see us off in the morning and greet us when we returned.Thank you to the Leatherstocking Honor Flight organization for giving us this gift and to all the donors who make it possible. “Thank you for your service” was the phrase of the day, the day we were heroes.Paul DonahueNiskayunaMore from The Daily Gazette:Puccioni’s two goals help Niskayuna boys’ soccer top Shaker, remain perfectFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristslast_img read more

Red Bull Leipzig set price for Arsenal to sign Dayot Upamecano

first_img Comment Metro Sport ReporterWednesday 7 Aug 2019 9:51 amShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link1.9kShares Advertisement Red Bull Leipzig will not listen to offers for Dayot Upamecano (Picture: Getty)Arsenal will have to pay Dayot Upamecano’s £92million release clause to sign the Red Bull Leipzig defender before the transfer window closes.The Gunners have shown interest in the Frenchman as Unai Emery looks to strengthen at centre-back following the departure of Laurent Koscielny.The 20-year-old is believed to be keen on a move to the Emirates and the Gunners had been ready to fund a £40m move for the France U21 international.However, the Mirror claim Leipzig have no intention of letting Upamecano go and have told Arsenal the only way of prising him away this summer is to pay his £92m release clause.ADVERTISEMENT Red Bull Leipzig set price for Arsenal to sign Dayot Upamecano Upamecano is keen on a move to Arsenal (Picture: Getty)There has been some suggestions that Leipzig could be swayed on allowing the defender to leave should Arsenal allow Emile Smith-Rowe to move in the opposite direction.AdvertisementAdvertisementThe midfielder spent last season on loan at the German club and they wish to re-sign him.More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing ArsenalHowever, his arrival would not compensate for Upamecano’s departure and it’s unlikely that Arsenal would break their club record for a second time this summer to sign the defender.The Gunners remain keen on Celtic left-back Kieran Tierney and are expected to place a third bid for the Scot in the next 24 hours.MORE: Romelu Lukaku unhappy with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer over Paul Pogba handling and Mason Greenwood claims Advertisementlast_img read more

Dutch giant APG pays 500 staff average bonus of €63,500

first_imgThe €417bn asset manager APG paid about 500 employees bonuses of €63,500 on average last year.According to its annual report, APG said it paid almost €32m in total in bonuses, amounting to 25% of the average salary.Variable pay makes up 10% of salary costs at the asset manager for the €359 civil service scheme ABP.Executive board members, including chief executive Gerard van Olphen, are ineligible for bonuses. At the €114bn MN, the average bonus as a percentage of salary is about half that of APG’s.MN – asset manager for the large metal schemes PME and PMT – capped bonuses at 20% of the basic salary and reported that 5% of its 1,200 employees were eligible for variable pay, compared with 14% at APG.APG said it set a similar maximum for workers reporting directly to its executive board but that variable pay for asset management could increase to as much as 40% of the basic salary.It added that, for its New York and Hong Kong-based workers, it tried to strike a balance between what was acceptable in the Netherlands and what was needed locally to retain valuable employees.APG emphasised that its remuneration policy was aimed at attracting, retaining and motivating qualified staff and said the bonuses it paid in New York were in-line with those for similar positions in the city.last_img read more

Berkshire Pension Fund to buy 20% of Gresham House for alternatives push

first_imgThe Royal County of Berkshire Pension Fund is to take a 20% stake in specialist asset manager Gresham House, backing a new alternative investment platform for other local government pension schemes.The Berkshire fund will provide the cornerstone investment for a new £300m (€353m) fund Gresham House plans to launch on the platform, called the British Strategic Investment Fund (BSIF).The BSIF is targeting investment in housing, infrastructure and “innovation” – three themes identified by the UK’s chancellor Philip Hammond in his 2016 Autumn Statement as being of strategic importance to the UK, said Gresham House.John Lenton, chairman of Berkshire Pension Fund, said the platform would enable the pension fund “to reduce costs and obtain diversity in our investments”. He added that the pension fund will target niche areas and smaller and longer-term investments than those that interest “the major investment houses”.“These give us the potential of a higher long-term return which is so important to a pension fund like ours that has to plan for pensions that will be drawn down many years in the future,” Lenton said.The new investment platform is intended to provide investors with access to illiquid alternative investments in niche asset classes that are often “overlooked” and difficult to access by larger funds, according to Gresham House.“For example, it becomes uneconomical for £25 billion pension ‘super-pools’ to monitor and manage sub-£50 million investments,” said the asset manager.The platform is aimed at local government pension schemes (LGPS) like Berkshire, but is also open to private sector pension funds, endowments, family offices, and other investors.“Initial discussions with a limited number of LGPS have confirmed interest in the objectives of the new Gresham House platform,” said the asset manager.UK LGPS are pooling assets to create larger funds capable of benefitting from economies of scale and, as desired by the government, investing in infrastructure.The Gresham platform is intended to allow investors to be involved in the investment process or engage directly with the manager, and to grant discretionary co-investment rights to “top-up” investments in preferred sectors or areas on a deal-by-deal basis.Berkshire’s acquisition of the 20% stake in Gresham House is subject to a vote at a general meeting on 10 March.Its move to enter into a strategic relationship with Gresham comes after the pension fund late last year announced a £15m investment in commercialisation of UK university research as part of an overhaul of its private equity portfolio.Tony Dalwood, CEO of Gresham House, said that the announcement “represents a further significant step in delivering the growth strategy that we set out when repositioning the group two years ago”.The asset manager’s board has identified alternative asset management as “a structural growth area”, it said in a statement.last_img read more

Study – Condom programmes increase teen fertility rates!

first_imgThe Corner 17 June 2016Family First Comment: No surprises. But the media may not report this one! Perhaps you could take the study and show the school nurse  A new study by a pair of Notre Dame economists received some media attention this week. It found that school districts that instituted condom distribution programs in the early 1990s saw significant increases in the teen-fertility rate. This study fills an important gap in the existing research on contraceptive programs. There has been a considerable amount of academic research on Long Acting Reversible Contraceptives (LARCs) and oral contraceptives. However, there has been almost no academic research on high-school condom-distribution programs.The study is very rigorous. The authors identified 22 school districts in twelve states that launched condom-distribution programs during the 1990s. Some of these school districts are among the largest in the country including New York City, Los Angeles, and San Francisco. Overall, the study analyzes teen-fertility data from 396 high-population counties over a span of 19 years. A range of demographic and economic factors are held constant. It finds that if 100 percent of high-school students attended a school with a condom-distribution program, the teen-fertility rate would increase anywhere from 10 to 12 percent. Furthermore, this finding was fairly consistent across school districts with condom-distribution programs.The researchers were unable to determine how exactly the condom-distribution program increased teen-fertility rates. There is a possibility that these programs reduced the usage of oral contraceptives which tend to be more reliable. There is a possibility that after condom-distribution programs were instituted, there was less emphasis on programs encouraging teens to delay sexual activity. Finally, there is a possibility that condom-distribution programs resulted in more teen sexual activity. Interestingly, the study finds sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) increased in counties with condom-distribution programs. While this provides evidence that condom-distribution programs encouraged sexual risk taking — the authors warn that this finding has to be interpreted cautiously.Thus study has received some coverage from some mainstream-media outlets such as Vox and Slate. However, their spin is that condom-distribution programs need to be coupled with either counseling programs or sex-education curricula in order to be effective. The study does find that counseling programs result in reductions in the teen-fertility rate. However, most of the regressions find these reductions fail to offset the increase in teen fertility associated with the condom-distribution program.Overall, the study adds to an impressive body of research which shows that efforts to encourage contraceptive use either through mandates, subsidies, or distribution are ineffective at best or counterproductive at worst. In many countries, increases in contraception use are correlated with increase in the abortion rate. Additionally, this study is very similar to a recent University of Michigan study which showed that increases in the price of oral contraceptives on college campuses resulted in less sexual activity among college-age women. Unfortunately, such research typically receives scant attention from the mainstream media.http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/436798/condom-distribution-programs-1990s-increased-teen-fertility-rateREAD MORE: http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2794728Keep up with family issues in NZ. Receive our weekly emails direct to your Inbox.last_img read more

With Support from IICA, Caribbean Countries Mobilize to Strengthen Food Security

first_imgWith support from the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), Caribbean countries are working to develop projects aimed at strengthening food security and risk management in the agriculture sector, which represent key issues during the Covid-19 pandemic.Projects currently being implemented include the renovation of an abattoir in Grenada, the sowing of drought-resistant forage for livestock in Antigua and Barbuda, and the provision of training in the use of drones for agricultural disaster risk management in Suriname.IICA’s food security initiatives in Grenada are focused on the Mirabeau abattoir, where activities are currently underway. In collaboration with the ministries of Agriculture and Finance, respectively, IICA obtained grants from the CARICOM Development Fund (CDF) last year to assist in renovating and procuring equipment, as well as providing training in and improving procedures in the facilities.The staff at the Mirabeau Abattoir are safer in their workplace thanks to personal protective equipment, first aid materials and disinfectants donated to the Ministry of Agriculture and Lands by the IICA Delegation in Grenada.National Specialist for IICA in Grenada, Derek Charles, stated that the equipment and materials donated were part of IICA’s Agricultural Health and Food Safety Hemispheric Program that was implemented in Grenada in 2019.Before the Covid-19 pandemic, IICA received external funds from the Australian High Commission Direct Aid Program to establish four demonstration plots in Antigua and Barbuda to produce a variety of drought tolerant grasses and legumes, such as mulberry, vetiver and dwarf elephant grass.In light of the pandemic and mill feed shortages that could result from shipment delays, this project will enable famers to rapidly multiply forage material for livestock to replace feed manufactured in mills.Planting material is currently being prepared as part of the project, which was launched in February 2020. The initiative will provide 250 mulberry plants, 150 glyceria plants and 200 dwarf elephant grass plants. Other high protein forages will be propagated and planted in each of the four plots, which will be watered using only drip irrigation.The project will benefit more than 35 livestock farmers who form part of the National Livestock Association, and the Ministry of Agriculture will establish a demonstration plot at a government station.In Suriname, IICA held a workshop on geospatial 3D-modeling tools and drone usage aimed at improving technical and institutional capacities for agricultural disaster risk management (ADRM) and sustainable agriculture.In addition to agricultural and environmental planning, these same knowledge and skills sets can be utilized in socioeconomic development planning, particularly in the many remote rural communities in Suriname. Share 43 Views   no discussions Sharing is caring! About IICAIICA is the specialized agency for agriculture in the Inter-American system, with a mission to encourage, promote and support its 34 Member States in their efforts to achieve agricultural development and rural well-being through international technical cooperation of excellence. CoronavirusLifestyleNewsRegional With Support from IICA, Caribbean Countries Mobilize to Strengthen Food Security by: – April 24, 2020 Share Share Tweetlast_img read more