first_imgStudent Senate met in LaFortune Student Center on Wednesday night to discuss potential issues with the revised O’SNAP program and possible future budget cuts.“I think there’s been some concern about the ways that SafeWalk and O’SNAP are being utilized. … There have been some issues with dispatching SafeWalk; I know it’s not an isolated thing,” St. Edward’s Hall senator and sophomore Jake Wittenberg said. “There have been a few issues with dispatching and a little clarification that we could take back to dorms, or some discussion on the procedures and efficiency of the program would be helpful.”While the topic will not enter into a formal discussion for a few weeks, other senators shared similar sentiments.“I feel like there’s been some discrimination with size and gender,” Keenan Hall senator and junior Ryan Rizzuto said. “… A few weeks ago, I called, and I had to keep belaboring a point that I was concerned for a girl who was very intoxicated.”Rizzuto also said he experienced an issue several weeks ago when he called to be picked up with a few of his friends. He was told there was no danger or reason for O’SNAP to pick them up if it was a group of six or more.“I don’t think they have any right to do that,” Rizzuto said. “If O’SNAP is a shuttle service, then we really need to hone in that message to the student body and figure out why it’s harder to be picked up if you’re a guy than a girl.”Student body vice president and senior Matthew Devine brought up the issue of newspaper subscription and distribution on campus.According to Devine, the University currently spends about $50,000 on newspaper subscriptions annually, but only about 100-150 papers are actually picked up per day.“I think we need to reassess,” Devine said. “… We’re looking to see if we can do individual subscriptions, but that doesn’t necessarily stay true to the purpose of making it available to everyone.”Alumni Hall senator and sophomore Scott Moore proposed potentially decreasing the order, if possible.“If we can’t get a smaller quantity, I’d rather see it disbanded,” Moore said.The Senate will continue the conversation on the topic throughout the remainder of the semester, ultimately deciding whether to keep all of the subscriptions for the 2015-2016 school year.“It’s going to be contentious, whatever the decision is, so we’re trying to make sure we get the most comprehensive thoughts from everyone,” Devine said.The Senate also unanimously passed a resolution moving Off Campus Council elections to the third week of April, as opposed to April 1.“The purpose behind this is essentially is that there can’t be a comprehensive list of all the students living off campus in about mid-February, when we’re asked for one, which makes it hard to have elections,” Judicial Council president and off-campus senior Kathryn Peruski said.Tags: ND student senate, Notre Dame Senate, Senate, student senatelast_img read more

first_imgSold Home For Sale Sign in Front of Beautiful New House.DID you find selling your home to be one of the most stressful things in your life?Is so then you are not the only one.According to a recent survey of Aussie property owners many people find the process of selling a home to be one of the most stressful experiences of their lives.The LocalAgentFinder Seller Sentiment Survey asked Australian property owners their thoughts on the process of selling a property.The 1058 owners surveyed had either sold property in the last year or were planning to sell over the next year. More from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach Northless than 1 hour agoNew apartments released at idyllic retirement community Samford Grove Presented by Of those surveyed, 57 per cent said that selling a property was one of the most stressful experiences in their life.Finding the right agent can cause a lot of the problems, with 51 per cent agreeing that this was the cause of most of the stress. When it came time to pick an agent, 30 per cent said they would hire ones they had used before, 27 per cent said they asked family and friends for referrals and 23 per cent said they searched online. LocalAgentFinder CEO, Matt McCann said the survey results show that the right agent can help lower the stress of selling.“The data points to a long-held view by LocalAgentFinder that the future is bright for real estate agents as consumers really do value what they have to offer,” he said. So to lower the stress, he recommended people do a bit more research to try and find an agent suited to their needs.“This insight in the context of the survey data suggests that savvy vendors might be prudent in investigating agent comparison sites to broaden their agent options because this could lead to the appointment of the right agent for their needs and reduce the overall stress involved in the selling process,” he said.last_img read more

first_imgMuch of Silver’s book is a description of the UK’s financial system covering equity and bond markets, the major institutional investor bases of pension funds and insurance companies, and the role of intermediaries in the form of banks and asset managers. He argues that, ultimately, savings are not being channelled by companies into productive investments, while banks are channelling their loans predominantly into property, giving rise to property bubbles in the UK.The price of all financial assets has been boosted by a steady decline in interest rates, while the price of individual companies’ shares has been boosted by share buy-backs, reduced investment and reduced staff costs.The financial framework is, as Silver describes, based around a few key theories, namely: the Capital Asset Pricing Model, which postulates relationships between risk and return; the Efficient Market Hypothesis, which argues that securities are usually fairly priced reflecting information available; and the Black-Scholes option pricing model, the most widely used general model for pricing options.But, says Silver, the financial system operates on a set of norms which equate all human values with financial value, and measures value as the market price. This is proving catastrophic for the economy, society and the planet.Financiers, says Silver, work in “Potemkin markets”, where every aspect is dominated by government. Financial markets are largely the creation of governments, they fulfil certain services for governments and they run in a way specified by governments.The problem is that, while governments encourage people to save for a pension to reduce the fiscal burden arising from an ageing population, it is not working because they have only managed to persuade the rich people to save – the very section of society who would not be a burden when they retire as they can afford to look after themselves.This, says Silver, is the result of the savings glut caused by governments encouraging people to save in combination with the actions of central banks in trying to repair the damage caused by the same savings being mismanaged. Interest rates have been driven to close to zero, making pensions unaffordable. Given the high charges of the finance industry, Silver argues that it is people who do not save for a pension who are the sensible ones.Silver’s key argument is that the current financial system is a by-product of financial intermediaries allocating capital to maximise their own revenues, with no guarantee that this will be in the best interests of society or the economy – in fact, it is likely that it will not be.Silver certainly raises many issues which should be debated more widely and are at the heart of many government policies. The problem with his book, however, is that the final chapters suggesting ways forward appear to be a random collection of ideas. They range through Scandinavian-style pension models, introducing a financial transaction tax or Tobin tax, finding alternatives to fractional reserve banking, better accounting of externalities, and ideas such as impact investing.I am reminded of Winston Churchill’s assertion that “democracy is the worst form of government, except all those others that have been tried”. Silver has certainly pointed out very many valid flaws in the Anglo-Saxon financial framework which need to be addressed. But he has not come out with a coherent description of anything better. Nick Silver, in his recently released book Finance, Society and Sustainability, argues that the financial framework behind the Anglo-Saxon economies of the US and the UK in particular is the construct of flawed economic theories which purport to efficiently allocate society’s capital.Instead, says Silver, the finance sector allocates savings and investments to maximise its own revenues, with a resulting collateral damage to the economy, society and the environment.John Kay led a review of the UK equity markets and long-term decision making, published in 2012. One conclusion was that UK equity markets were no longer a significant source of funding for new investment by UK companies.Silver argues that this means asset managers who dominate the market are not actually doing the job they are supposed to be doing – yet the people who work in this field are highly paid not to do their job. His book then attempts to explain how this has happened.last_img read more