April , 2019

Statement by President Barack Obama on the Attack in France at Charlie Hebdo offices, a ...
Madigan Urges Illinois Contributors to Research Charities Before Donating                      Chicago, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa ...
(From the campaign of Cuahutemoc Morfin)                                              In wake of Tribune investigation, Morfin and Perez Elementary parents ...
By William Spriggs The weekend of May 17 marked the ...
By Chinta Strausberg   Reacting to the death of 47-year-old Rodney King who was found dead at ...
  By Chinta Strausberg   The Saint Sabina's Sabor Latino group is holding a symposium entitled, “Common Threads, ...
Chicagoland Lowest Unemployment Since 2009 Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rates Metropolitan Area Feb. 2014* Feb. 2013 Bloomington-Normal ...
States Shared Goals for Combatting Chicago Gangs CHICAGO, IL – U.S. Senator Mark Kirk (R-Ill.) announced ...
Police say shooting was ‘gang-related’ By Chinta Strausberg As Father Thulani Magwaza began Saint Sabina’s weekly ...
SPRINGFIELD, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan applauded House lawmakers for their unanimous support ...

Archive for May 5th, 2014

President Obama: “My Number One Priority as President is Doing Whatever I Can to Create More Jobs and Opportunity for Hardworking Families”

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on President Obama: “My Number One Priority as President is Doing Whatever I Can to Create More Jobs and Opportunity for Hardworking Families”

President Barack Obama’s Weekly Address: The President’s Year of Action, May 3, 2014

WASHINGTON, DC – In this week’s address, the President provided an update on the work his Administration has done to strengthen the economy and expand opportunity for hardworking Americans in this Year of Action. While Republicans in Congress are setting records in obstruction, the President is making progress for the American people and has taken more than 20 executive actions since January. The President vowed to continue taking action on his own wherever possible, but underscored that much more progress could be made if Republicans in Congress were less interested in stacking the deck in favor of those at the top, and more interested in expanding opportunity for all.

The audio of the address and video of the address will be available online at www.whitehouse.gov at 6:00 a.m. ET, Saturday, May 3, 2014.

Remarks of President Barack Obama/Weekly Address,The White House

Hi, everybody.  My number one priority as President is doing whatever I can to create more jobs and opportunity for hardworking families.  And yesterday, we learned that businesses added 273,000 jobs last month.  All told, our businesses have now created 9.2 million new jobs over 50 consecutive months of job growth.

But we need to keep going – to create more good jobs, and give middle-class families a sense of security.  And I want to work with Congress to do it.

But so far this year, Republicans in Congress have blocked or voted down every serious idea to create jobs and strengthen the middle class.  They’ve said “no” to raising the minimum wage, “no” to equal pay for equal work, and “no” to restoring the unemployment insurance they let expire for more than two million Americans looking for a new job.

That’s not what we need right now.  Not when there are still too many folks out of work and too many families working harder than ever just to get by.

That’s why, in my State of the Union Address, I said that in this Year of Action, whenever I can act on my own to create jobs and expand opportunity for more Americans, I will.  And since January, I’ve taken more than 20 executive actions to do just that.

I acted to raise more workers’ wages by requiring that workers on new federal contracts earn a fair wage of at least $10.10 an hour – and as long as Republicans in Congress refuse to act, I’ll keep working with cities, states, and businesses to give more Americans a raise.  I acted to encourage more pay transparency and strengthen enforcement of equal pay laws, so that more women have the tools they need to earn fair pay.  And I’m modernizing regulations to make sure that more Americans who work overtime get the pay that they’ve earned.  I’ve launched new hubs to help attract more high-tech manufacturing jobs to America – and ordered a reform of job training programs to make sure more Americans can earn the skills that employers need right now.  I’ve brought together business leaders to help us connect more classrooms to high-speed internet, and give more of the long-term unemployed a better shot at finding a job.

Each of these steps will make a difference.  You can check out the full list at whitehouse.gov.

But we could do a lot more if Republicans in Congress were less interested in stacking the deck in favor of those at the top, and more interested in growing the economy for everybody.  They’ve now voted more than 50 times to take apart the Affordable Care Act – imagine if they voted 50 times on serious jobs bills.

That’s why I’m going to take action on my own wherever I can.  To grow our economy from the middle-out, not the top down.  To give every American who works hard a chance to get ahead.

That’s what this Year of Action is all about, and that’s what I’m going to keep fighting for.

Thanks, and have a great weekend.

Madigan: Contractor Pleads Guilty to Fraud for Illegally Obtaining Contract for Capital Restoration Work

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Madigan: Contractor Pleads Guilty to Fraud for Illegally Obtaining Contract for Capital Restoration Work

Attorney General Investigation Reveals Minority-Owned Business Fraud in Phase Two of Illinois Capitol Restoration Project

CHICAGO, IL – Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan announced the former president of a Peoria area construction firm pled guilty to fraud in a scheme to obtain a taxpayer-funded construction contract for part of the Illinois Capitol restoration project in Springfield.

Stephen Roeschley, 65, the former president of the Morton-based Core Construction Services of Illinois, pled guilty to wire fraud earlier today before Sangamon County Circuit Court Judge Peter Cavanagh. Roeschley admitted to using a minority-owned business, BJB Enterprises in Peoria, as a front to obtain a contract for the phase two restoration of the Capitol building.

The felony conviction is the result of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Public Integrity Bureau, which Madigan created to uncover fraud, abuse and waste of government resources.

Madigan said Roeschley represented to the Illinois Capital Development Board that it would employ BJB Enterprises on the project to meet the state’s legal requirement that a portion of the work be completed by a minority- or woman-owned business. However, Madigan’s investigation revealed BJB Enterprises did not do any work associated with the contract or provide any materials for the project.

“Our investigation revealed that the company used a minority-owned business as a front to obtain a state construction contract,” Madigan said. “The pervasive evasion of the state law requiring opportunities for minority- or women-owned businesses will not be tolerated.”

Roeschley, who is no longer president of the construction firm, was ordered to pay $800,000 in restitution to the state and sentenced to 30 months of probation.

This case was investigated and prosecuted by Assistant Attorneys General David Navarro and Kathleen Duhig and Associate Director James S. Dorger of Madigan’s Public Integrity Bureau.

Conviction Part of Madigan’s Work to Restore Public Integrity
Madigan formed the Public Integrity Bureau and tasked it with using the tools afforded the office within statutory limits to uncover public corruption and enforce state law. Public Integrity investigations have led to the convictions of elected officials, public employees and government vendors – from an elected state representative and county state’s attorney to local officials, police officers and rank-and file government workers – who used their positions for personal or political gain.

Today’s conviction is the latest in a series of cases involving minority-owned business fraud in public projects. On Thursday, Madigan joined with U.S. Attorney Zachary T. Fardon to announce a $12 million whistleblower settlement with James McHugh Construction Company over allegations the company used women-owned businesses to fraudulently secure multimillion dollar public projects funded by the state and federal governments for work on Chicago area roads, highways and public transit systems, including Wacker Drive and the Chicago Transit Authority’s Red and Brown lines.

In March 2013, Madigan secured a guilty plea for fraud and obtained $1.5 million in restitution from Thomas J. Williams, the former president of the Peoria Heights-based Williams Brothers Construction Inc. Williams admitted using a minority-owned business as a front to obtain two state contracts in 2010 to restore the historic Lincoln Hall at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and to construct a new science complex at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville.

In March 2011, the Attorney General secured the conviction of Robert Blum, owner of Markham-based Castle Construction Corp., for fraudulently obtaining more than $18 million in construction contracts with the Chicago Transit Authority (CTA) and the Public Building Commission, which were awarded in part based on the requirement that Blum employ minority-owned subcontractors.

The Attorney General’s work to fight corruption has extended beyond her Public Integrity Bureau. During her tenure, Madigan’s office has investigated and prosecuted fraud against government programs, including child care, in-home care, unemployment insurance and student loan programs, Medicaid and state grant funding. The Attorney General took legal action to revoke the Emerald Casino license over deep concerns of corruption, and acted to deny taxpayer-funded pension benefits to convicted former Governors George Ryan and Rod Blagojevich.

Madigan also created the new position of Public Access Counselor in her office to serve as a watchdog to public bodies that refuse access to public records. The Public Access Counselor reviews and resolves thousands of public record disputes each year, working to reverse Illinois’ long legacy of a lack of government transparency. Her office has continued this work in the state legislature by helping to draft the State Employees and Officials Ethics Act, tightening revolving door prohibitions on state employees and requiring greater public disclosure of Inspector General investigative reports.

Earl King bristles at Clippers owner, Donald Sterling, he called unfair

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Earl King bristles at Clippers owner, Donald Sterling, he called unfair

Former pro player recalls racism way back then

by Chinta Strausberg

The world is talking about the loose lips of Clippers owner Donald Sterling long known for his racial epithets but recently banned because of his taped phone conversations that included offensive remarks about African Americans he told his girlfriend not to bring to his games.

One of those taking a trip down memory lane is Earl B. King, then a professional basketball player with the San Diego Clippers owned by Sterling.

In 1982-1983 King played for the San Diego Clippers. He had made the veterans team and was practicing one day when he was knocked out of the air during a rebound. “I almost broke my neck,” he recalled. “I hit the floor really hard.” One of those witnessing the accident was Craig Hodges, former Chicago Bulls.

“I got up, continued to try and play but I couldn’t. They told me to go to a room where they put ice on my neck. I told them I did not feel well,” recalled King.

“The next day, I was told they were cutting me from the team. They did not allow me to see a doctor. When black players got hurt, they would cut them but when whites were hurt, they were put on injured reserve.”

King said even back then, black players were treated unfairly even when the circumstances were identical. “The contract states when a player is hurt he goes on injured reserve. You cannot cut a player when he is injured, and they breached the contract.”

Injured, King said he went home in great pain the next day after he was illegally cut. He then saw Dr. James Hill at Northwestern Hospital. “At that time, Hill was a doctor for the Olympics team who worked for the NFL and NBA evaluating players if they were to be cut.

“After my evaluation, Dr. Hill told me that an injured player should not have been cut and that I should not have been walking at the time. I stayed under his care for more than a year. I pressed charges against the San Diego Clippers. We pursued this case for more than two-years.

King, and his attorney, Elliott Zinger, sued for $200,000. “They ended up paying me my salary or $30,000. We were looking to get more funds because the injury ended my career. I settled and told them I had founded the “No Dope Express Foundation” and that instead of paying me for a life time injury I would accept a contribution of $100,000 to help youth with drug and gang problems.”

“They told me that sounded very good and that they would do that. They promised to call me after they talked to the owner, Donald Sterling. They never returned my call,” King said. “They reneged on their agreement. It was a racist move because they discriminated against black vs. white players when it came to injuries.”

Attorney Elliot Zinger confirmed the lawsuit. “They cut Mr. King when he was injured. I thought it was very inappropriate. It was unfair and we ended up winning the lawsuit.” Sterling isn’t the only one being criticized for alleged inappropriate conduct.

King chided Sterling for receiving a lifetime award from the L.A. NAACP even though he was known for his racial discrimination in housing. “They were getting ready to give him a second life time award until he got caught on tape talking about blacks,” said King.

He found that ironic since at the time he had asked the Clippers to donate $100,000 for his organizations that would have helped black youth reduced the violence instead the NAACP gave Sterling a coveted award just because he contributed mega bucks to their organization.

King is still doing a slow burn because upper senior management never returned his calls. “I was trying to provide opportunities for black children and stop the killing.”

It still pains King, who was considered an interloper back in 1995 when he ran for president of the NAACP against Herb Bates, to think about the NAACP’s role in giving Sterling the prestigious award in 2009 but the same organization opposed his bid for election because he was only trying to provide alternatives to black youth.

“I recruited more than 5,000 new members for the NAACP of which 2,000 were votes from gang members,” said King. “I was going to bring corporations to the table as well as prepare a job training and educational program needed to take them away from drugs, gangs and violence. At the time, King was working with former high-ranking gang leader Harold Noonie Ward.

“I raised $50,000 for the NAACP when I ran for president through a membership drive. They saw I had 5,000 votes that included 2,000 from gang members. At that time, the NAACP only had between 300-500 memberships. King’s ability to increase youth membership reportedly frightened old timers who linked that relationship to allegations that he worked with gang leaders—a charge that was not true.

“I had to sue the NAACP in order for them to vote,” King said referring to efforts by the NAACP to block youth members from voting in the election. The NAACP’s Constitution and bylaws state that youth can vote for president or youth council if they paid a $3.00 prerequisite membership fee. “Because of my lawsuit, the NAACP changed the bylaws and constitution mandating an age of 21 to vote for president of the chapter.”

“We won twice in the lower courts for the right for the youth to vote. However, the national and the local NAACP appealed and went to the Appellate Court where they won by 1 vote. I spent $30,000 to keep this lawsuit going.

While some NAACP members felt allowing gang members would taint the reputation of the civil rights organization, Nehemiah Russell, then the assistant principal of Englewood High School where King had recruited some of his students said, working with these youth “is a plus, not a liability. We must extend our hands to groups that are trying to affirm themselves.”

In retrospect, King said, “I was trying to get black kids off the streets, into the classrooms and enrolled in job training programs to become gainfully employed, and here they (the L.A. NAACP) are in L.A. giving a life time achievement award to Donald Sterling just because he was giving them $100,000. I brought in $50,000 to the NAACP…. It was very disturbing to me.”

After the Sterling tape was made public, L.A. NAACP President Leon Jenkins resigned.

For more information, contact Earl King at 708.257.2885.

Chinta Strausberg is a Journalist of more than 33-years, a former political reporter and a current PCC Network talk show host. You can e-mail Strausberg at: Chintabernie@aol.com.

Gov. Quinn Announces $25 Million in Grants to Enhance Security at Schools, College Campuses

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Gov. Quinn Announces $25 Million in Grants to Enhance Security at Schools, College Campuses

Grants will fund more than 1,300 projects at 448 schools, campuses

SPRINGFIELD, IL – Governor Pat Quinn announced grant awards totaling $25 million to enhance security at 448 public elementary and secondary school districts, community colleges and state universities in Illinois. The grants will support 1,312 projects, including reinforced doors, shatter-resistant glass, physical locks and other security measures that will enhance safety for students, staff and visitors.

“Nothing is more important in Illinois than keeping our schools safe,” Governor Pat Quinn said. “These projects will strengthen security at main entry points, providing school personnel with critical moments to alert law enforcement, activate plans to protect students and save lives.”

The Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) announced the Illinois School and Campus Safety Grant Program earlier this year. Only one application per school district or college campus was accepted, although an application could include multiple projects. IEMA received grant applications totaling more than $54 million from 623 school districts and campuses.

More than two dozen individuals assisted with criteria development, review and evaluation of the applications, which included nearly 2,200 projects. These subject matter experts included representatives from state and local emergency management, academia, law enforcement, private security and school security.

“Our top priority for funding was to help schools establish a baseline security capability through such measures as reinforced doors, shatter-resistant glass and physical locks at primary public entrances,” said IEMA Director Jonathon Monken. “These are the types of security enhancements experts say can buy valuable time for schools to implement emergency plans.”

Sugary Drink Tax Legislation Will Bubble Up Again

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Sugary Drink Tax Legislation Will Bubble Up Again

Efforts to combat obesity-related health issues in Illinois will continue

Springfield, ILDespite reports to the contrary, efforts to pass the proposed state sugary drink tax will continue. The HEAL Act, a modest penny-per-ounce tax on sugary drinks, will help to fund public education on the impacts of sugar on the diet and the wide range of health effects that are caused by obesity. The proposed tax would raise an estimated $600 million in revenue that would be devoted to school and community health programs such as physical education, community gardens, farmers markets, and healthcare for low-income residents.

“The reports of the sugary drink tax’s demise are greatly exaggerated,” said Elissa Bassler, CEO of the Illinois Public Health Institute and the Executive Director of the Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity, which is leading the charge to pass the HEAL Act. “The issues regarding obesity-related health impacts such as diabetes, heart disease, and stroke are not going away, and we are committed to continuing with our mission to promote prevention and improve public health systems that maximize health and quality of life for the people of Illinois. The passage of the HEAL Act is vital to the success of that mission.”

“Improving Illinois’ diet is the right thing to do. We need to invest in public health and obesity prevention,” said State Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago). “I introduced the HEAL Act to begin a necessary conversation. I’m committed to revisiting this issue every year until we pass a law that encourages people to make healthy choices about sugary drinks.”

This year’s proposed bill was introduced by Representative Robyn Gabel (D-18th District) and Senator Mattie Hunter (D- 3rd District). The statewide coalition supporting the legislation, called Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity, includes groups such as: American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association, Chicago Hispanic Health Coalition, and the Illinois Academy of Family Physicians, to name a few.

According to the Illinois Public Health Institute, there is no arguing that sugary drinks have little to no nutritional value – they are simply empty calories. So the health argument is a no-brainer. But the beverage industry has taken a page from Big Tobacco’s playbook to argue that the sugary drink tax will exact an economic toll, costing jobs and adding to already steep tax burdens. However, a recent study published in the American Journal of Public Health shows that the Illinois tax would have no significant impact on employment. In fact, when one takes into account the full economic impact of the tax, including consumers shifting to untaxed beverages (also produced and distributed by the beverage companies) and the economic activity generated by the expenditure of the tax revenue, this study shows that a proposal like the HEAL Act could result in a net increase of 4,500 jobs. Beyond jobs, another study found that the health improvements brought by the tax could reduce childhood obesity by 9.3%, diabetes by 3,400 new cases, and save taxpayers more than $150 million in state and private healthcare spending.

Sugar-sweetened beverages are the single biggest source of added sugar in the American diet. Each day, more research continues to prove the harmful and dangerous impacts of sugar. Sugar found in sugar-sweetened beverages not only raises one’s risk for chronic disease and obesity, the human and financial toll is a burden we can no longer afford.

About Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity

The primary goal of the Illinois Alliance to Prevent Obesity is to ensure that trends in obesity in Illinois are stable by 2015 and moving downward by 2018.The statewide coalition of over 140 organizations works to implement solutions to the obesity epidemic through coordinated and comprehensive policy, systems, and environmental changes. It is administered by the Illinois Public Health Institute. www.preventobesityil.org

H-1B Visas, Wage Suppression and Senate Republicans

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on H-1B Visas, Wage Suppression and Senate Republicans

By  William Spriggs

Last week, Senate Republicans blocked a vote on raising the federal minimum wage. To economists, wages, goods and services must be priced in real terms-that is, adjusted for inflation-to understand their economic effects. In real terms, the federal minimum wage has been falling for five years. People who claim that “raising” the minimum wage would have bad effects, must also argue that lowering the wage has good effects.

During the past five years while the real value of the minimum wage was declining, the labor market has been the worst it has been in more than seventy-five years, and poverty has been increasing. To argue that the poor economy outweighs the falling minimum wage is to make the case that other things are far more important in determining job losses and gains than the minimum wage-precisely the point of those convinced raising the minimum wage is important to the economic health of the economy.

But, the Senate Republican effort to suppress the wages of America’s workers is compounded by the House Republican efforts to stall on extending unemployment insurance benefits and to drastically cut the Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP). Those actions hurt the annual income of working Americans and the bargaining position of workers for decent wages. The positions also contradict Republican arguments that poor workers should be helped by SNAP rather than paid higher wages.

But these are elements in a set of policies at the root of America’s growing inequality. The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) highlights this global trend in a new report this week, showing America leading the trend. The OECD is concerned because inequality is bad for economic growth and for developing trust in institutions.

The votes on the minimum wage, unemployment insurance and SNAP aren’t the only policies to suppress the incomes of the 99 percent. Last month, we learned that Silicon Valley companies in California colluded to suppress the wages of their employees. For nearly two decades, Americans have been promised that a new middle class would arise from the digital revolution and computer jobs. But, the same old anti-worker attitude prevails in the “new” economy as in the old.

The press on this collusion to suppress the earnings of engineers and computer scientists in Silicon Valley has ignored a bigger policy issue: The use of H-1B visas by Silicon Valley. On April 7, companies already reached the cap Congress allows for the visa for this fiscal year. But, if firms are colluding to suppress the wages of America’s workers, how can there be a policy aimed at a “shortage” of workers?

If wages are capped, then the demand for workers will be greater than the supply of workers. The result is that firms will observe a “shortage” of workers-one firms created.

If there is a real shortage of talents, then firms should want open competition. Bidding for talent serves many purposes. It assures workers that hard work will be rewarded. And, it sends a message to those who shirk that the firm will bid and pay to find someone else with the talent to do the work. Higher wages also send a market signal that investing in the skills will be rewarded; encouraging more people to get the skills for the job. About the time firms set in motion their collusion to suppress wages, the share of American undergraduates majoring in computer science peaked. Clear evidence the market isn’t sending the right signals.

The use of H-1B visas to fill the “gap” between the supply and demand of workers is the enforcement mechanism to make the collusion to suppress wages work. So, congressional bending to industry demands on the H-1B program is yet another policy, like doing business’ bidding on the minimum wage, keeping America’s wages down.

Internationally, May Day is set aside to honor workers. Its origins are in America, when workers gathered in Chicago in 1886 to demand making eight hours the standard work day. Since then, many policies were put in place, with bipartisan support, to tip the balance in dividing America’s growing prosperity toward creating a vast middle class. Republicans should reflect on their continued opposition to popular policies that put more money in the pockets of the 99 percent.

Follow Spriggs on Twitter: @WSpriggs. Contact: Amaya Smith-Tune Acting Director, Media Outreach AFL-CIO 202-637-5142

NAACP Responds to the Bureau of Labor Statistics April Employment Report

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on NAACP Responds to the Bureau of Labor Statistics April Employment Report

Says employment numbers show unemployment rate decreases; but employment participation rate is low

Washington, DC – The NAACP has released the following statement in response to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) April employment report which indicates that for the month of April, the national unemployment rate dropped to 6.3% with 733,000 fewer people counted as unemployed and 288,000 new jobs created. For African Americans, unemployment decreased to 11.6%; but employment participation rates also decreased dramatically.

From Dedrick Muhammad, Sr. Director of NAACP Economic Department:

“We are encouraged by the overall decrease in unemployment; but the employment participation rate also continues to decline particularly in the African American community. We cannot grow and strengthen the economy if we do not create more jobs and bring more workers into the labor market.  This is crucial to closing the racial economic divide and growing a solid middle class in the 21st century.”

The report also indicated major gains in temporary help (24,000), food service (33,000), and healthcare (19,000)  — beating expectations.  The unemployment rate for Asians was 5.7%, for whites 5.3% and Latinos 7.3%.

Graph: NAACP

Illinois Department of Insurance announces that Illinois will allow renewal of existing health plans for 2015

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Illinois Department of Insurance announces that Illinois will allow renewal of existing health plans for 2015

Insurers will now have the choice to extend transitional policies for an additional year to ease transition under Affordable Care Act

CHICAGO, IL — The Illinois Department of Insurance (DOI) announced that Illinois will comply with the federal government’s request for an extension of transitional health plans for the 2015 plan year. This extension will give insurers the option to renew existing plans with current policyholders for one year, beginning on or before October 1, 2015, in the small group and individual markets. Plans eligible for renewal under this extension will not be considered out of compliance with market reforms.

“Illinois is pleased to support President Obama’s efforts to make the transition under the Affordable Care Act as smooth as possible” DOI Director Andrew Boron said. “This extension will benefit consumers, allowing individuals to keep their current plans during this time of transition as we strive to provide better and more affordable healthcare for each and every individual.”

On March 5, 2014 the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a letter extending the transitional policy for plans in the small group and individual markets. The transitional policy was originally issued on November 25, 2013, following President Obama’s request to give insurers the choice to renew existing health insurance policies for the 2014 plan year.

Under the extension, plans sold before January 1, 2014 and renewed between January 1, 2015 and October 1, 2015 will be eligible for renewal under this extension. The Department of Insurance will join with the federal Department of Health and Human Services to forego enforcement of certain Affordable Care Act requirements. For more information, the Department of Insurance has issued Company Bulletin 2014-04 setting forth the guidelines that apply to renewals under this extension.

Stronger in technology, yet racial weakness is destroying U.S.

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Stronger in technology, yet racial weakness is destroying U.S.

By Rev. Harold E. Bailey

President of Probation Challenge and the PCC Network

It seems rather strange that in a day where modern technology has taken the U.S. and its consumers to heights unknown, that the hearts and mentalities of some have become weaker!

With modern technology in its advanced age, can you believe some incoherent heirs to the political microphones resort to broadcasting unrehearsed lies without the blinking of an eye? Is it that in a political ‘Willie-Lynch’ plight to destroy the underprivileged tax payers, many forget they’re on-the-air with stupid commentaries that are heard around the world? Carelessly, these demons-of-mass-destruction only seek to rob, steal and will destroy an entire nation.

On a mission from the pit-of-hell, these demonic-political spirits are barriers of packages which promote racism and ignorance! The well-spoken and deceiving orator often speaks with misgivings and misconceptions that could destroy the very fabric and framework for which these United States was built… justice and liberty for all people!

With all said and done, has the stench of politics beaten the majority of tax payers down? As trash is subliminally shoved down the throats of U.S. citizens, some deceivers are saying they come in the name of President Barack Obama! Foolishly some of these very same politicians are hoping that the consumers will swallow their bitter taste of bigotry like a gigantic taste of Castor oil?

As families are torn apart by shooting and killings in the Chicago area, gangs and other demonic forces have now become rampant!  Some politicians and leading organizational leaders speaking off-the-record state that administrative anti-crime efforts should take a place with ‘anti-crime established programs’ that have served successfully over the years and have proven track records.

With rough crime facts and figures staring the public in the face, it has been documented that the city’s police and mayor’s administrations has mishandled crime figures. Now without hope, many horrified mothers will have to continue peering from behind the window, curtains of their multi-locked doors, trembling as daily gunshots are no longer heard from the allies, but now heard as bold murders are committed in the main streets of Chicago.

With all the tales told, and the press uncovering what is stated to be the truth; it is fair to say that the deceiving tongues of those elected and appointed persons continue to say – Crime is Down!

The holy scriptures warn us about principalities and spiritual wicked folk sitting in high places. In private quarters a public-figure said that, “The powers-that-be continue to spit in the face of elders and the poor, who pay their salaries! This is more than despicable behavior coming from persons elected to lead, protect and to serve.”

Biblically, we have been instructed to marvel not at the things we now see and hear, for it is stated that these things must be! Why are these things happening? Simply because the heart of man has waxed cold and has become increasingly evil as the prince of darkness prevails! We have been commanded to fight a spiritually-good fight… and to remember that our reward is dispensed by God and not man!

Rev. Harold E. Bailey is President of Probation Challenge and the PCC Network

WWW.ProbationChallenge.org – The Truth Network

Rap Artist Icon Tenina “SUGA-T” Stevens Earns Master’s Degree

Posted by Admin On May - 5 - 2014 Comments Off on Rap Artist Icon Tenina “SUGA-T” Stevens Earns Master’s Degree

“SUGA-T” establishes Programs addressing needs of At-risk Girls and Disadvantaged Women

“B.L.E.N.G. Enterprise Empowers Self Exploration”

SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA, CA: Vallejo, California entertainment icon Tenina Stevens–professionally known as “Suga-T”–has grown and evolved over the years. Now a multi-faceted, modern-day renaissance woman, Suga has advanced her lyrical skills in the R&B, Gospel, Soul and Hip Hop genres along with becoming a successful social entrepreneur, motivational speaker, mentor and activist. She established B.L.E.N.G. (Build Layers That Empower Nourish & Groom) Enterprise, which incorporates a collective of social programs that provide professional, personal, and leadership development skills, along with paid internships for at-risk girls and special programming collaborations for disadvantaged women who are in transition. Stevens’ grassroots connection brings her to believe that in order to be successful, programs such as these are most effective if the approach in reaching women and girls is to meet them where they are while empowering them to explore what they can become.

Tenina “Suga-T” Stevens

Having endured and overcome teen parenting two children, domestic violence, alcoholism, low self-esteem and the male chauvinism in the Hip-Hop music industry, Stevens has emerged with a fresh resolve, stronger and better than ever for her current and future endeavors. She has the first-hand experience that deems her credible to carry the title “Transformation Specialist” with a passion to help others re-invent themselves.

This Teflon lady has overcome and excelled in her family record label, later co-venturing with Jive Records then incorporating Hip Hop Mom Productions. Suga-T is a well-respected national artist, executive producer, actress, speaker and songwriter.  She armed herself for the future by returning to school and earning an AA degree in Business & Liberal Studies, BA degree in Psychology, and recently a Masters Degree in Organizational Management and Supply Chain Management. She commented “Life should be about helping others to make it through, and without love, knowledge and purpose, our life is in vain…”

Stevens first created a fragrance production company called Suga-T Fragrances that she founded during a domestically violent marriage. “The Sprinkle Me Boutique” of Suga-T Fragrances is the co-sponsor for its social division B.L.E.N.G. Enterprise. Stevens explains, “Suga-T Fragrances is not only a fragrance packaging company that creates collections of fragrances, oils, spa & body products and fashions; the company’s non-traditional business model also includes a focus on empowering women and girls with the necessary tools that can give them a better chance of dodging unhealthy circumstances that they can encounter in their lives.”

B.L.E.N.G. Enterprise is a social enterprise that hosts a variety of coaching and consulting services.  Under the B.L.E.N.G. umbrella, individuals, families, companies and non-profit organizations regularly call upon Stevens for keynote speaking, leadership training, business development, fashion and image consultation, and career and life coaching. She currently highlights a premier service for styling fuller size and uniquely shaped woman and girls. Stevens especially makes her services available on a sliding scale for individuals who are interested in its services yet dedicates proceeds to support B.L.E.N.G.’s social programs.

About Tenina “Suga-T” Stevens:

Suga-T was a part of her family’s recording label, Sick Wid It Records coached as an executive and artist. Later she and her family label co-ventured with Jive Records and currently has a record of certified Gold & Platinum releases, within the group, her solo act, soundtracks, features and a plethora of independent releases. During her almost 30-year tenure with “The Click” (her brothers E-40, D-Shot and cousin B-Legit), known as “The First Family of Rap,” and she, as the first lady of the group, showcased untouchable lyrical prowess, singing notes and songwriting skills contributing to hits such as “Family,” “One Love” and Sprinkle Me,” which is a multi-platinum national hit. The collaboration with her sibling brother E-40 was noted the “biggest brother & sister duet ever in history.” The group amassed impressive recognition independently, and later on Jive Records, selling over 20 million records world-wide.  In 2011, Suga-T earned several music industry awards, including the Legend Award, Underground Girls of Rap Humanitarian Award and Best Rapper Award along with many other rewards.

Suga-T has also been seen on the screen, co-starring on such properties as MTV’s Lyricist Lounge Show, BET’s “Obstacles,” a movie by D Shot, “Maliboodie” by Brian Hooks, and now hosting the Bay Area Block Report Top Ten Video Countdown, producing and hosting a TV Show, B.L.E.N.G. with Suga-T. She recently released a digital singing release titled “Unbreakable Me,” that goes a long when incorporated in her keynote speaking empowerment campaign. The song speaks to the broken hearted and broken population who suffer from lack of knowledge in a generation that is distracted from the negative acting out behavior and glorified negativity through some media, negative peer influence and lack of knowledge.

To engage Ms. Stevens’ services or learn more about the programs she offers for groups, businesses and community organizations, call (888) 436-0574 or email management@beaboutit.biz. For press interviews, contact Toni Beckham at Toni@PRetCetera.com | (888) 977-6962.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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