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Hugh Jackman & More Call for Reinstatement of Sound Design Tonys

first_img The 2013-14 Tony Awards Administration Committee announced their decision following their final meeting three days after the 2014 Tony Awards. They noted that while the two categories would be eliminated, a special award may be given to a production when the committee determines that extraordinary sound design has been achieved. Reactions ranging from disappointment to outrage erupted online, prompting the hashtag #TonyCanYouHearMe. Tony winners Hugh Jackman, Stephen Sondheim, Lin-Manuel Miranda and Diane Paulus are among those who have have signed a petition to reinstate the categories for Best Sound Design of a Play and Musical. According to The New York Times, the petition has now been submitted to the Tony Awards Administration Committee. The committee voted this summer to eliminate the two categories, just six years after the awards were first presented in 2008. View Commentscenter_img Tony nominee John Gromada, sound designer and composer for the current revival of The Elephant Man, formed the online petition shortly after the ruling had been made public on June 11. He had collected the 32,495 signatures by July 30. In it, Gromada noted, “Sound designers are an important part of the theatrical community whose vital contributions cannot be ignored or dismissed.”last_img read more

The ‘Long-Term Problem’ Facing U.S. Coal

first_img FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Pittsburgh City Paper:Economic experts warn that coal will continue its long-term, steady decline. Pennsylvania coal-industry advocates are optimistic about coal’s future, and say coal production will remain steady and an important part of the area’s energy portfolio. But even with these diverging views of the overall future of coal, everyone seems to be in agreement about one thing: The coal jobs are not coming back. “I suggested that [Trump] temper his expectations. Those are my exact words,” said Murray Energy CEO Robert Murray, the country’s largest coal-mine owner, in a March 2017 article in The Guardian newspaper. “He can’t bring them back.”Pittsburgh City Paper analyzed U.S. Department of Labor data on jobs at coal-producing sites in Southwestern Pennsylvania, including Allegheny, Butler, Washington, Greene, Fayette, Westmoreland and Armstrong counties. (Beaver County had no coal mines, according to the data.) In 2017, the average number of workers at coal-producing sites, like underground and surface mines, in this region was 2,767, an increase of 26 workers compared to 2016, or a growth rate of less than 1 percent. Nationally, coal jobs ticked up by 771 to 54,819 jobs, an increase of 1.4 percent, according to news organization Reuters.  With the projected 370 jobs lost at the 4 West Mine, this means the region will have to add more than 344 coal jobs to have positive job growth in 2018. Seth Feaster, of the Institute for Energy Economics and Financial Analysis, a Cleveland-based group that advocates for a diverse, sustainable and profitable energy economy, says this will be an extremely difficult feat. Feaster says there was a positive jolt to the coal industry with the election of Trump, but adds that enthusiasm for coal has since waned, because the demand hasn’t really recovered. He notes that the fourth quarter of 2017 saw a drop-off in coal-industry hiring compared to early in the year.Feaster also says job numbers over the last several years indicate a bleak future for coal employment. “If you take a slightly longer view of the coal industry, just to 2015, there was still a 13,000-job loss compared to 2017,” says Feaster. “Go back to 2012, you are talking about a loss of 35,000 jobs. Coal is facing a long-term problem.”The Trump administration has made many policy changes to attempt to boost coal. Trump’s administration has rolled back several environmental regulations, many of which were specially requested by Murray and his company. On Jan. 9, The New York Times reported that just weeks before the inauguration, Murray, who owns coal mines in Washington County, provided Trump with a wish-list of environmental regulations he wanted ended. Murray told PBS’s Frontline that Trump has already enacted many of his suggestions. Trump’s Energy Secretary, Rick Perry, proposed a plan to subsidize struggling coal power plants, but the plan was rejected by a mostly Trump-appointed Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. FERC cited that the current tariffs on these coal mines were not unjust or unreasonable. Feaster says that Trump’s attempt to subsidize coal and his acquiescence to a coal CEO’s request shows that coal is facing intense competition in the energy market.“It plays really well to stand up for coal, there is cultural resonance in all of Appalachia,” says Feaster. “But there is a difference in politics and economics, and that is the problem with the coal industry. There are huge coal reserves … you could burn them for the next 150 years. But if it is not [economically viable], it doesn’t matter.” Feaster says that in the Pittsburgh region, coal is getting beat out by natural gas. Drilling for natural gas, particularly through hydrofracturing, experienced huge growth from 2012-2017 in Appalachia, including areas in southwestern and northern Pennsylvania, West Virginia and eastern Ohio. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, natural-gas production in Appalachia increased by more than 14 billion cubic feet per day from 2012 to 2017. Dozens of new fracking wells have been drilled in Southwestern Pennsylvania during this time.“The coal industry has intense competition, and that is not likely to change,” says Feaster. “Its most direct competitor, natural gas, has seen a big growth in production in the Appalachian region.”  And even though many recognize that coal jobs are unlikely to return in large numbers, the coal industry is still upping its production and profits. In Southwestern Pennsylvania, mines produced more than 2.1 million tons more in 2017 compared to 2015. However, the region lost 185 coal jobs over that time span.  Feaster says even if coal companies do better in terms of production, thanks to fewer regulations and government agencies helping them, coal-mine owners are still going to focus on profits over hiring more workers. Feaster says this is typical behavior for the coal industry. “As they talk about coal mining, they are also laser-focused on efficiency and cutting jobs. People … are going to focus on the efficiency.”More: President Donald Trump said coal miners in Southwestern Pennsylvania would be put back to work. One year later, is that happening? The ‘Long-Term Problem’ Facing U.S. Coallast_img read more

This Newport home showcases modern living at its best

first_imgMore from newsLand grab sees 12 Sandstone Lakes homesites sell in a week21 Jun 2020Tropical haven walking distance from the surf9 Oct 201918 Freya Court, Newport.“We don’t lock the door but if someone wanted to, they could,” Mrs Vella said.“Someone may want to buy the house and have someone rent it out.”She said it was the perfect living arrangement for their family because everyone had their own quiet space. 18 Freya Court, Newport.It was what enticed Lyn and Jim Vella to buy the property more than seven years ago.Mrs Vella said she and her husband had been using the apartment, while their daughter and grandson shared the house.There is a door between the two living areas, with access to a shared laundry and the three-car garage and carport. 18 Freya Court, Newport.SPACE and tranquillity make this modern home ideal for big families or buyers wanting to rent out part of the house.The 765sq m property, at 18 Freya Court, offers dual living, with five bedrooms in the main two-storey house and two in the attached apartment. 18 Freya Court, Newport.She said the suburb was a lovely area to live, with the beach, parks, Peninsula Fair Shopping Centre and train station close by.“I think this area has got the best of everything,” she said.“The beach is only five minutes away, and we can (see) the Glass House Mountains.“I’m sure someone will love it just as much as we do.”The home also has a shed in the backyard, solar power and a solar powered hot water system. 18 Freya Court, Newport.But the saltwater swimming pool with a spa and outdoor entertaining area were her favourite features of the property.“I do love the pool area because it’s a nice, big pool … and our outdoor area (because) it’s all screened,” Mrs Vella said.“It’s wonderful during seven months of the year when we love to eat out there on a balmy night.”last_img read more