Dier hit with misconduct charge for fan-rage incident after Spurs’ FA Cup loss

first_imgERIC DIER has been charged by the FA after he climbed into the crowd to confront a fan after Tottenham’s FA Cup loss to Norwich in March.The England man, 26, leapt over advertising hoardings and raced up the West Stand after Spurs lost on penalties.3 Eric Dier has been charged by the FA for sprinting up the stands to confront a fan in March3 Dier was pictured and filmed arguing with supporters in the home endCredit: Rex FeaturesDier is said to have been protecting his younger brother, who’d got himself into a spat with a fellow supporter.But the Tottenham man has now been charged with misconduct.An FA statement read: “Eric Dier has been charged with misconduct for a breach of FA Rule E3.”It is alleged that the Tottenham Hotspur midfielder’s actions at the conclusion of the Emirates FA Cup fixture against Norwich City FC on Wednesday 4 March 2020 were improper and/or threatening.”Eric Dier has until Friday 8 May 2020 to provide a response.”The statement went on to reveal there is no estimated fine or ban in place as yet, thanks to the unusual nature of the incident.It read: “This case is being treated as ‘non-standard’, so no sanction has been offered with the charge.”If it is accepted, or found proven, any penalty ultimately imposed will be solely at the discretion of an independent Regulatory Commission.”At the time of the bizarre clash, a source revealed one fan had been screaming “horrendous” abuse in the direction of Dier.3 The incident came just minutes after Tottenham crashed out of the FA Cup on penaltiesCredit: Rex FeaturesMORE TOTTENHAM STORIESHARRY ALL FOUR ITKane admits Spurs must win EIGHT games to rise into Champions League spotGossipALL GONE PETE TONGVertonghen wanted by host of Italian clubs as long Spurs spell nears endBELOW PARRSpurs suffer blow with Parrott to miss Prem restart after appendix operationPicturedSHIRT STORMNew Spurs 2020/21 home top leaked but angry fans slam silver design as ‘awful”STEP BY STEP’Jose fears for players’ welfare during restart as stars begin ‘pre-season’KAN’T HAVE THATVictor Osimhen keen on Spurs move but only if they sell Kane this summerYOU KAN DO ITKlinsmann quit Spurs to win trophies but says Kane’s better off stayingTURBULENT PAIRINGDrogba and Mido had mid-flight brawl after stewardess prank went wrongGossipSPURRED ONTottenham table contract offer for Bayern Munich’s teenage starlet Taylor BoothExclusivePASS THE TESTEngland’s NRL-based stars urge bosses to make room for a Test this yearHis younger brother, Patrick – who was sat nearby – then tried to calm the man down.It is believed the pair got into a heated exchange and the Three Lions star jumped into the stands to protect his sibling.Numerous videos showed Dier leaving the pitch and then climbing 20 ROWS to make his way towards a section of supporters inside the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.Jose Mourinho reacts to Eric Dier incident saying he was helping his younger brother during altercationlast_img read more

Bournemouth upset Man United

first_img IMPROVING SEASON Bournemouth’s first season in the top flight is starting to get better and better. The little coastal club that almost dropped out of the country’s professional leagues six years ago beat Chelsea 1-0 away last weekend for what ranked as the biggest win in its 116-year history. Other results: Norwich 1 Everon 1; Crystal Palace 1 Southampton 0; Sunderland 0 Watford 1; West Ham 0 Stoke City 0. MANCHESTER, England (AP): First it was criticism of Manchester United’s playing style. Then came the team’s limp exit at the Champions League group stage. Yesterday, it was a loss to tiny Bournemouth in one of the Premier League’s biggest-ever mismatches. The problems are stacking up for under-pressure United manager Louis van Gaal in his second season in charge of England’s biggest club. United – depleted by a wretched run of injuries to senior players – conceded directly from a corner in the second minute on their way to a humbling 2-1 loss at Bournemouth, the latest shock result in a season of surprises in the Premier League. Earlier yesterday, Manchester City had needed a huge deflected goal just to get a 2-1 home win over Swansea, who are without a manager and on one of the worst run of results in the league. City went top on goal difference, for one day at least.last_img read more

November highest month for wildlife collisions; tips to reduce your risk

first_imgNovember is the worst month for wildlife collisions in the Peace Country, and the BC Conservation Foundation wants drivers to observe a few precautions to reduce their risk of hitting an animal on the road. Every year, approximately 31 animal strikes occur in the Fort St. John area during the month of November, contributing to a total of 19,600 animals killed by vehicles every year in British Columbia. Those accidents can often result in injury or worse; ICBC says provincially, more than 300 people are injured each year in these collisions, and RCMP figures indicate that on average, four people die each year in the province as a result of wildlife collisions.However, Gayle Hesse of the Wildlife Collision Prevention Program says there are easy ways to lessen the chance of hitting an animal on the road. Most importantly, drivers should reduce their speed, especially between the peak animal activity hours of 7 to 8am and 5 to 6pm. Hesse says it’s also important to resist the urge to speed through long flat stretches of road, as this is where most deer strikes occur. Additionally, drivers should be aware that deer often travel in pairs, so if one is in sight, there are likely more nearby.- Advertisement -As for the commercially available “deer whistles,” which are designed to frighten deer off the roadway by emitting a loud whistle, Hesse had this to say… [asset|aid=608|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=07b4c673922035baa40d9852a64fd86a-Hesse-Deer_1_Pub.mp3] More information on these tips can be found at www.wildlifecollisions.ca.Advertisementlast_img read more

Vasquez leads pack in contributions

first_img Candidate Jeff Siccama has raised $14,414, Octavio Guzman raised $12,900, and Johnny Verdugo collected $10,000, mostly from loans. Candidates Sally Torres, Larry Salazar (no relation to Kathy) and Annette Ramirez have each received more than $4,000 in contributions. Siccama, Guzman and Torres each got $3,000 from the Montebello Chamber of Commerce. Molinari and Vasquez expressed disappointment that the chamber did not support them, even after years of membership and involvement in the organization. “It concerned me greatly,’ Molinari said. “I’ve been a member for 13 years. But they gave me an agenda and said, `If you want our endorsement this is what you have to do.’ Well, I’m no one’s boy. I will do what’s in the best interest of the residents.’ Vasquez said she requested to talk to the chamber board about why they left her out. The chamber released a statement about its endorsements. “We believe these candidates have a vision to restore the confidence in city government, improve communication within the community and work on fiscal responsibility and provide residents with the types of businesses needed in Montebello,’ the statement said. Verdugo said he has been hitting the streets day and night, even visiting workers on night shifts at hospitals, the Police Department and 24-hour stores. “I have told businesses, `If you offer me money and you do business in Montebello, you may want to re-think that, because you’re not going to get any favors from me when I’m on the Council.’ I will only ever do what the residents want me to do,’ he said. @tagline columnist:Pam Wight can be reached at (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3029, or by e-mail at pam.wight@sgvn.com. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 Most of Vasquez’s contributions came from business interests, while some came from public office holders, including Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca and state Assemblyman Ron Calderon. Two of the city’s biggest developers, Hank Attina and TELACU, donated to her campaign Attina giving $1,000 and TELACU $2,000, according to finance statements. Former Mayor Kathy Salazar was the only one of the nine candidates who had not turned in campaign finance reports by the deadline last Friday. Salazar said she filed her statement Wednesday afternoon, explaining that it took her that long to complete the form. Although Mayor Bill Molinari, running as an incumbent, raised the fourth-largest amount in contributions $9,500 he had a previous balance of $4,688 in campaign funds, leaving him with a balance second to Vasquez’s. Molinari is the only incumbent and is running for his fifth term. With more than $42,000 in campaign contributions, Montebello City Council candidate Rosemarie Vasquez has left her competition in the dust, raising three times as much as her nearest rival for the three open seats in next month’s elections. Vasquez attributed her lead in campaign contributions to an early start in organizing. “I started planning back in February,’ she said. “Most of the money came out of a golf tournament fund-raiser I held in August, which a lot of businesses and organizations came to. “I’ve worked really hard to get that money. I’m a professional fund-raiser, and when you show you can raise money, people take you seriously.’ last_img

Fourteen Donegal projects share €476,000 in LEADER funding

first_imgDonegal’s Local Community Development Committee (LCDC) has approved €476,000 for 14 new projects under the LEADER Rural Development Programme. The projects funded this week range from festivals to arts, sport and heritage projects to capital works type initiatives in community centres.Chair of the Donegal LCDC Cllr Martin McDermott believes that these funds are instrumental to support development in rural areas in Donegal. He said “We have identified a number of objectives in Donegal that we want to see achieved through the LEADER Rural Development Programme including rural tourism, enterprise development, rural towns, broadband, basic services targeting hard to reach communities, rural youth, sustainable use of water resources, improvement of local biodiversity and the development of renewable energy.”The LEADER Rural Development Programme which runs from 2014 to 2020 aims to improve the quality of life in rural areas and to encourage diversification of economic activity in rural areas and almost €13m has been allocated to Donegal under this Programme.In Donegal three key themes have been identified in the roll out of this programme including Economic Development, Enterprise Development and Job Creation, Social Inclusion and Rural Environment.This funding programme is administered by four implementing partners in Donegal including Donegal Local Development Company (DLDC), Inishowen Development Partnership, Údarás na Gaeltachta and Comhar na nOileán and the final decisions on project funding rests with the Donegal LCDC Local Action Group which is supported by Donegal County Council. Cllr McDermott is urging local community groups and businesses to continue to come forward with applications to the LEADER Programme.He added “This funding presents a great opportunity for groups and businesses across Donegal to deliver innovative and meaningful projects in their local areas and I would encourage any group or business with an idea to engage with the implementing partners to see how the ambitions for their area or business can be supported.”Fourteen Donegal projects share €476,000 in LEADER funding was last modified: July 22nd, 2019 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:DLDCdonegalfundingLEADERProjectslast_img read more

SA junior miners most optimistic: survey

first_img15 March 2013 After two tough years for mining in South Africa, the country’s junior miners are optimistic about the next 12 months, more so even than their Canadian, Australian and British counterparts, according to the inaugural Grant Thornton International Mining Report. At the same time, the report cautioned that South Africa’s junior miners would need certainty about the future if they were to convert risks into growth for the country’s mining industry. Grant Thornton’s report, released on Thursday, surveyed junior miners in four countries where mining is a priority, namely South Africa, Australia, Canada and the UK (specifically for the large amount of mining companies listed on AIM, a sub-market of the London Stock Exchange). (Website Investopedia defines a junior mining company as an exploration company that looks for new deposits of gold, silver, uranium or other precious minerals, targeting properties believed to have significant potential for large mineral deposits. “Junior exploration companies are a major source of future mine supply,” the website notes.)Uncertainty ‘affects ability to raise finance’ South African junior miners surveyed by Grant Thornton said that uncertainty arising from nationalisation debates in past few years had limited growth and expansion opportunities for the junior mining sector countrywide. “Uncertainty arising from the nationalisation debate harmed the industry’s ability to raise finance, and any instability going forward will have the same negative impact,” Steven Kilfoil, mining advisory and corporate finance director at Grant Thornton Johannesburg, said in a statement on Thursday. “Thankfully the nationalisation issue has now been settled, and this stability will assist miners to access funding.” Kilfoil said the report showed that South African mining executives were “beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel following a period of mine violence, strikes, uncertainty surrounding the mineral regulatory regime and ambiguity around government’s plans on nationalisation.”SA junior miners plan to spend, hire more The report revealed that South African junior miners will spend more on capital equipment and, despite knowing that labour and energy costs will increase significantly, they also expect to be profitable, with half (49%) of the respondents in South Africa also anticipating increased revenues this year compared to 36% in Australia, 31% in Canada and 21% in the UK. In terms of future investments, nearly half (49%) of South Africa’s junior miners expect to increase their investment in plant and machinery over the next 12 months, compared to a global average of 42%, while two-thirds of South African respondents (62%) were looking forward to higher commodity prices compared to 54% globally. The survey also indicated that 44% of South African junior miners plan to employ more people, with a positive outlook also expected for the year ahead in terms of salary increases across the junior mining sector – 44% of SA respondents said they would increase salaries by more than inflation, while 46% said they would offer pay rises in line with inflation.South African market ‘robust’ Kilfoil said he had recently attended the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada annual conference in Toronto, where he said the mood on the floor was generally pessimistic. “Canada has approximately 1 200 listed junior miners of which only about 800 are expected to survive the next 12 months,” he said. “A third of them will disappear or be absorbed by major players. “[Canada] therefore has a number of economically unviable listed resource companies that were able to raise initial funding and start drilling. Now, however, they cannot access any further funds.” One way to raise finance is to go to market, and thankfully the South African market was more robust, Kilfoil said, with Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) requirements being far stricter than those of other major mining countries. “While this has to some extent stifled exploration, it has also been very positive, as investors are better protected and our exchange ensures that assets that come to market are good assets. “I have always been a huge proponent of exploration. It’s vital – but it needs to be done carefully,” Kilfoil said. “We don’t want to end up with a situation similar to that of Canada, where there is a proliferation of smaller companies that have raised money for exploration but are now cash-strapped.”Policy, red tape concerns South Africa also needed to ensure that investors were afforded the predictability they needed for resource exploration and development projects, Kilfoil said. The nationalisation concerns which were raised in Grant Thornton’s research were with specific reference to the challenges which junior mining organisations were facing in accessing finance. Half (49%) of the SA respondents in the report indicated that they would need finance for their businesses within the next two years; 26% of these said they would need funds within the next six months. South African junior miners surveyed also raised the issue of over-regulation. “Too much red tape causes needless project delays, discourages investment in the sector and dampens enthusiasm for exploration,” Kilfoil said. Another negative highlighted by the survey was the issue of bribery and corruption, with 40% of South African miners citing this as a significant concern – nearly double the global figure of 23%. Interestingly, however, access to a skilled workforce was not much of a concern to South African junior miners, and it was with the rest of the world. This was in contrast to the findings of the recent Grant Thornton International Business Report, which showed that 58% of South African businesses in general had difficulties in recruiting skilled workers. “This talks to the fact that our mining industry is mature and strong, with a significant group of people that really knows the business – and understand how to mine,” Kilfoil said. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

How to Create Great Production Design for Film & Video

first_imgProduction design is the key to creating the world in which a film exists. Let’s take a look at what it takes to develop solid production design.Top Image: JJ Abrams and Daisy Ridley on the set of Star Wars: The Force Awakens via Lucasfilm.Production design is a huge component of the filmmaking or video production process. There’s a lot that you can convey to your audience through great production design. With this in mind, we’re going to rely on the experience and knowledge of Colin Gibson (Mad Max: Fury Road), Grant Major (Lord of the Rings: Return of the King), Rick Carter (Star Wars: The Force Awakens), and the legendary Stuart Craig (Harry Potter Series).Through each one of these Academy Award-winning Production Designers, we’ll learn what we need to do to take our productions to the next level.What Is Production Design?Production design is the process of developing and creating the “look” of a film or video environment. This includes creating the initial concepts, building sets, fabricating costumes, developing makeup effects, and working with the VFX team. In the end, all of these sections come together to present the audience with visual information that establishes a sense of place and conveys an emotional response through the background elements, costumes, and props.Who Runs the Design Team?At the head of production design is the production designer or PD. The PD will work closely with the director and cinematographer to set the overall look of the film and to bring the director’s vision to life. They also oversee all aspects of the production design from concept to construction. However, they do not do this alone; there are several key crew members that work alongside the PD.Production Design Team:Art Director (AD): works directly with the PD and oversees the draftsmen, storyboards, artists, and set decorators.Production Illustrator or Concept Artist: creates the initial sketches and designs alongside the PD and AD.VFX Coordinator or Supervisor: works with the PD to ensure CGI elements match the look of the practical set.Set Decorator: develops the look of the set through research and obtains items to fill the set.Set Dresser: arranges the items from the set decorator and ensures continuity between scenes.Costume Designer: works with the AD to develop the look of the characters, pays close attention to period and place.Makeup Artist: oversees all makeup aspects of the production, from simple adjustments to special effects makeup.Why Is Production Design so Important?As mentioned above, this is the process of building the physical look of the film. The set, costuming, and makeup design all need to be reflections of one another. If one of these aspects is off, then you run the risk of pulling your audience out of the experience.One worrisome issue that production designers face in today’s industry is they must fight to retain control over the look of the film due to the reliance on CGI visual effects, as Grant Major mentioned in 2014.You often have to fight for control of the look of the film when you have the production sub-contract out to digital companies these virtual environments. — Grant MajorIn an interview with Deadline, production designer Colin Gibson stated that PDs need to push for practical sets and effects. He mentions that audiences today are far more impressed when a set is practical and crafted by an amazing production design team, which was the approach he took when designing Mad Max: Fury Road.You still need to get the hair up on the back of people’s necks. You still need real physics. — Colin GibsonOf course, there’s no stopping the advance of digital filmmaking. While some production designers see this as a possible issue, PD Rick Carter sees it as a natural progression toward a new era of hybrid filmmaking. These are the principles he employed when designing practical and digital elements for Star Wars: The Force Awakens.There’s something that’s going on with the computer and with hybrid moviemaking… Just a lot that’s physical and a lot that’s digital, and it’s all part of the new vernacular. — Rick CarterSo, as you can see from the words of these Oscar-winning designers, production design is absolutely crucial to a film or video’s success. Let’s look at the collaborative process of designing a film or video.Production Design: the Three-Part Process1. ConceptEach production design begins with the production designer reading the script to determine the initial visual style. Once this is done, meetings with the director and cinematographer take place to solidify the design. To make this happen, concept illustrations and mock-ups are researched, produced, and sent to the director and producer for approvals. These concepts and mock-up designs cover set architecture, costumes, props, VFX design, and makeup.Here’s a video from The Gnomon Workshop that features the legendary concept designer Syd Mead (Blade Runner, Tron, Aliens). In the video, Mead offers crucial design advice and demonstrates some of his storied talent and technique.2. PlanningOnce the designs are approved, the PD’s team moves into the planning stage. Additional research on build locations for the sets takes place. Blueprints for set construction are drafted. Also, budgets and property lists are developed to ensure that this portion of production doesn’t run beyond the funding allowed.3. FabricationOnce designs are approved and plans are finalized, the actual fabrication of the design begins. Construction crews come in and actually build the set if needed. Also, the set decorator, dresser, costume designer, and makeup artist begin the process of developing their individual parts of the production design. When this portion is done, the director, cast, and crew begin film production.Have you had experience with production design? Share your story in the comments below!last_img read more

Your Personal Path to Independence

first_imgYou are independent when you no longer need to rely on something or someone else.The first level of independence you need to reach is being independent of needing “this job.” This doesn’t mean that you are wealthy enough that you no longer need to work, although that is a level of independence you should pursue. At this first level of independence, you may need “a job” to survive, but not necessarily the one you are in now. Or the one after that.How do you gain this first level of independence? Through personal and professional growth and development.Personal GrowthFirst, you develop yourself personally to be so valuable that, should something happen (and given a long enough timeline, something always happens), you will have your pick of new opportunities. You work on building your own personal strengths and capabilities so that you are more valuable to many organizations in many industries.You need a list of things that you are personally studying to make you more effective as a human being. I’d start with Stephen Covey’s Seven Habits of Highly Effective People (as a workbook, not as a “book to read.”) I’d also follow the recipes in Tom Peter’s The Little Big Things. You might sign up for unlimited classes on Lynda.com for $25 a month and learn all kinds of skills and all kinds of useful software packages.Your personal growth and development is the path to independence.Professional GrowthSecond, you focus on growing professionally. You need to learn your trade or craft, whatever that is. Even though it may be your employer’s responsibility to give you the training and development you need, you should never leave that responsibility in anyone else’s hands. You do what is necessary to grow, whether that be reading, taking classes, or finding a mentor.You also need to do such good work where you are now that you are the first person on anyone’s list for the opportunity for advancement. This requires that you seek out growth opportunities, namely difficult and important projects. It also means you seek out responsibility for delivering outcomes.Your professional development is your responsibility, and it also the path to independence.Relationship GrowthYou’ve heard that “It’s not what you know. It’s who you know.” Well, now it’s who knows you and for what.The third development project you must always be working on is your personal and professional relationships. You must develop a personal and professional network of people who know you, know the value you create, and trust you so much that they’ll vouch for you anytime and anywhere.If you are doing well here, people are already presenting you with opportunities. If you are doing poorly here, you are not sure what you would do if something happened.Relationships are built on an investment of time and energy. You have to have a presence and spend time with people in order to develop powerful relationships. You also have to proactively look for ways to be valuable to the people who make up your personal and professional relationships. You don’t find ways to be helpful so that people owe you favors. You find ways to be helpful to make a contribution and to be known as someone who cares and who makes a difference.When something happens, and eventually it will, your relationships are going to be a big part of your next opportunity. They are a critical component of your path to independence.This is your path to personal independence. If you are not on this path now, step on to it in a hurry. Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Nowlast_img read more

NSF’s Science Board Criticizes Bill to Alter Agency’s Programs

first_img The presidentially appointed oversight body to the National Science Foundation (NSF) has taken the unprecedented step of publicly criticizing pending legislation that it feels would be harmful to the $7 billion research agency.The stance taken by the National Science Board (NSB), detailed in a 5-paragraph statement released today, escalates a yearlong battle between the scientific community and Representative Lamar Smith (R-TX), the chair of the science committee in the U.S. House of Representatives. Smith’s bill (H.R. 4186) to reauthorize NSF programs “impose[s] significant new burdens on scientists that would not be offset by gains to the nation,” the board declares. “We are concerned that the proposed new legislative requirements might discourage visionary proposals or transformative science at a time when advancing the decades-long U.S. leadership in science and technology is a top priority.”Those requirements include telling NSF how to vet grant proposals under its so-called merit review process. Smith has repeatedly highlighted specific grants that he feels are frivolous or wasteful and has said the legislation, called the Frontiers in Innovation, Research, Science, and Technology (FIRST) Act, is designed to make NSF more accountable and to make its grantsmaking process more transparent.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*)Science board members could not recall another instance in which the board spoke out on pending legislation, although in 1998 it was asked by Congress to comment on an NSF reauthorization bill. But “we feel that the health and prosperity of the U.S. scientific enterprise is part of our responsibility, and this is a statement of our belief,” explains Dan Arvizu, the board’s chair and director of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colorado.In particular, NSB members feel that the bill’s language “is just too constraining,” says Kelvin Droegemeier, the board’s vice chair and vice president for research at the University of Oklahoma. “There are lots of things that could be problematic for peer review and that could slow things down,” he tells ScienceInsider. The statement notes that NSF and the board “are implementing new processes that will increase both transparency and accountability. We therefore do not see a need to impose new, more inflexible, legislated requirements on NSF and our science and engineering communities.”Smith responded to a request from ScienceInsider with an e-mail that questions the sincerity of NSF’s attempts to address his concerns. “After a year of the National Science Foundation (NSF) resisting calls for more public accountability, the agency’s last-minute announcement of a new internal policy is too little too late,” Smith writes. “The internal policy would continue to allow the NSF to evade responsibility for their decisions to fund questionable grants. The NSF wants to be the only federal agency to get a blank check signed by taxpayers, without having to justify how the money is spent.”FIRST is an authorization bill, meaning it only recommends spending levels. (Congress follows a parallel process, using its appropriations committees, to determine actual yearly budgets for every agency.) And the science board objects to the fact that the bill suggests specific funding levels for each of NSF’s research directorates.That level of detail is new for NSF reauthorization bills, which have previously proposed an overall amount for spending on research. The differentiation is seen as a way for the science committee to cut funding for the social and behavioral sciences, disciplines that many committee Republicans have said are less important to the nation than research in the physical sciences and engineering.“[T]he bill’s specification of budget allocations to each NSF directorate would significantly impede NSF’s flexibility to deploy its funds to support the best ideas,” according to the board’s statement. Droegemeier fleshed out the board’s concern by noting that “the scientific community really determines our priorities by presenting us with the most exciting research opportunities, and anything that reduces that flexibility would not be wise.”Smith disagrees, arguing that Congress has a responsibility to make sure that tax dollars are spent most effectively. “The NSF’s new internal policy omits any commitment to make awards that are in the ‘national interest,’ a standard that should guide taxpayer-funded grants,” he writes. “Under the Obama administration there has been a shift in priorities from engineering and the physical sciences to more taxpayer-funded social, behavioral and economic (SBE) research. Basic research in the physical sciences drives economic growth, produces new technologies and creates jobs. The Committee’s support for NSF’s important work is reflected in the fact that the FIRST Act authorizes more funding than the President’s budget request.  But to regain America’s scientific edge the Committee will adjust priorities for taxpayer-supported research.”The FIRST bill was approved by the science committee’s research panel on 13 March and is expected to be adopted by the full committee sometime in May. Droegemeier said the board wanted to express its views before the committee met. At the same time, the bill will need to be passed by the House and the Senate—which has yet to draft its own version of an NSF reauthorization bill—before it becomes law.Although the NSF board and Smith are at loggerheads on this issue, they are not strangers; Smith attended a private session of the board last year and has talked with some of its officers. And although the science committee doesn’t set NSF’s budget, Droegemeier was careful to show deference to a legislator with considerable clout over NSF’s activities.“We appreciate his passion for science,” Droegemeier says. “He absolutely gets it. And we value our communication with him.” But Droegemeier said that “it’s hard to get into the head of an individual legislator. There are a lot of things about the legislative process we don’t understand.” National Science Board last_img read more