Sales Tax Holiday Is This WeekendAll items eligible this weekend;ENERGY STAR appliances tax free until July 18MONTPELIER, Vt. – With the Independence Day weekend behind us, state officials today took time to remind Vermonters that Sales Tax Independence Days are coming this weekend.”I hope the people of Vermont and visitors to our state will take advantage of this opportunity to purchase products without paying state sales tax,” said Governor Jim Douglas. “This weekend is a chance to save some much needed cash, and to help Vermont businesses.”Included in the Governor’s Economic Growth Initiative, the sales tax holiday on July 12 and 13 means all non-business purchases of property costing $2,000 or less will be exempt from state sales tax except automobiles and vehicles.Customers can purchase multiple items on one invoice totaling more than $2,000 and still receive the exemption if the selling price of each item is $2,000 or less.For example, a customer can purchase two bicycles for $1,500 each; a roof rack for $300; and two helmets for $150 each. The invoice total is $3,600, however because each item is priced below $2,000 the entire invoice is exempt from sale tax.And from July 14th through 18th, the sale tax holiday is extended on Energy Star-rated appliances costing $2,000 or less.”This a great opportunity to replace that old, inefficient clothes washer or other appliances with a new ENERGY STAR ™-model that can help lower your electricity costs and save more money over the long run,” Douglas said. “In addition to the sales tax savings, Efficiency Vermont is continuing its offer of cash rebates from $25 to $50 on selected ENERGY STAR ™-appliances.”Efficiency Vermont is the state’s provider of efficiency services and is currently operated by Vermont Energy Investment Corporation (VEIC), an independent non-profit organization under contract to the Vermont Public Service Board.”Purchasing an ENERGY STAR ™ appliance helps Vermonters lowers their energy costs,” said Scott Johnstone, executive director of VEIC. “Everybody benefits from that.””Not only do consumers get their electric bills lowered, but reducing demand means utilities don’t need to purchase as much power,” Johnstone said. “That helps reduce not only everyone’s future electricity bills but emissions as well.”The state has been promoting the sales tax holiday event in concert with retailers and Efficiency Vermont.”We are promoting this event not only to Vermonters, but to neighboring states and Quebec,” said Kevin Dorn, Secretary of the Agency of Commerce and Community Development. “Vermont is always a popular vacation destination in the summer, and this sales tax holiday can make the state even more attractive to visitors.”Learn more at: www.taxfreevt.com(link is external)-30-
…another FIFA intervention will be suspensionBy: Ras WadadaTHE current stalemate existing within the ‘Elite family’ of the Guyana Football Federation (GFF) is in need of immediate dialogue and without a doubt, some compromising among the chief stakeholders of the ‘Beautiful Game’ before it gets real ugly.It is not a year as yet since the present GFF’s executives were elected to govern the sport after just over one year of a FIFA appointed Normalization Committee’s (NC) reign.The narrow victory by Wayne Forde’s Team Integrity over Team Unity, in what is considered the most fairly contested elections in the history of the GFF, was disappointing and a bitter taste to some that perhaps still lingers. This might very well be the root cause of this current imbroglio.The sport of football, like any other sport, is governed by and must be guided by its rules and regulations without partiality. No one should be above the rules or the Sport, but here in Guyana we have inherited a culture of self-satisfaction and very little regard for guidelines.Since assuming office, it is obvious that this present Executive is striving to change that kind of mentality in order to bring the ‘Beautiful Game’ to a quality and marketable product that is well respected and supported.I often say whatever we do off the pitch can be mirrored by an on-field action and in this instance it is reflective of a game situation where the two sides think the Referee has made a wrong call that can perhaps determine the outcome of the game. In the real game scenario,the two sides will respect the referee’s decision and continue playing for the ‘good of the game’. Of course there have been very few occasions where either side or both would ignore the referee’s judgement call;thereby bringing the game into disrepute.At this juncture,Guyana can ill-afford the latter because it will mean an instant two year suspension and all parties will feel it since a lot of money have been invested by teams. More importantly, the long awaited GOAL project, which has just begun, will be halted and the big increase of FIFA’s annual grant we will not have access to.In this off-the-pitch game, the Constitution of the GFF is the referee,and it must be respected as we ‘bury the hatchet’ for the ’good of the game’; and in a positive spirit of the Game we move forward and not backward.There must be urgent dialogue and compromise if we truly love the “Beautiful Game,’ and do mean well for the family.
RAY PFEIFFER/Herald PhotoThe Badgers offense was a major concern coming into the 2006 season, but those concerns have officially been put to rest.If UW head coach Bret Bielema needed any more affirmation of this — besides watching his team enjoy back-to-back 500-yard games — it came when running back P.J. Hill became the second Badger to earn the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week award in as many weeks, with quarterback John Stocco winning it last week.Hill shared the honor with Ohio State quarterback Troy Smith. Last weekend, Hill carried the ball 35 times and ran for 249 yards — including a 60-yard run for a touchdown on the second play of the game.One of the concerns that Bielema addressed at his weekly press conference Monday was Hill’s ability to withstand the physical wear and tear of having a large number of carries week in and week out.”There are certain things that we have done during the course of the week and made certain adjustments during practice of the things that he goes through or doesn’t go through,” Bielema said. “Also, we limit the contact that he goes through from our own players during the course of the week. Our players also realize that we are a better team when P.J. is playing.”Hill split Bielema’s choice for UW offensive MVP of the week with tight end Travis Beckum, who quietly hauled in eight catches for 107 yards, both game highs, against the Wildcats.”I thought [Travis] made a giant step forward, not only in the passing game, but some of the things that he was able to do in the running game,” Bielema said.On the defensive side of the ball, cornerback Jack Ikegwuonu and defensive end Matt Shaughnessy were named the co-defensive most valuable players. According to Bielema, Ikegwuonu has been playing very well the last few weeks and had a very good game against Northwestern, even though he has not put up stellar numbers.”[He] doesn’t have as many stats as we would like to see, but this is because they are not really coming his way,” Bielema said. “There are certain things that he is doing [well], not only on defense, but also on special teams.”Take a numberThe Badgers made their debut in the rankings this week. They are now ranked No. 25 in the nation in this week’s Associated Press Poll, receiving 86 votes.However, Bielema was not flattered by the national recognition. Instead, he said he looks at it as somewhat of a distraction to his players.”I really appreciate the ranking and everything that comes into it,” Bielema said. “I knew it would become an issue, not just from the media and the questions that they were going to be asked, but now they are going to walk into the classroom and people are going to make reference to it.”He emphasized that the players must keep working hard and maintain Bielema’s mentality.”The reason we are in this situation is the focus that we have had and we have kept the ‘1-0’ mentality,” Bielema said. “If we falter off of that, we can lose that same position as fast as we earned it. “No rest for the wearyThe question arose of the Badgers not having a bye week this season. Wisconsin has hit the halfway point of a grueling 12-game stretch in consecutive weeks. This could have a big impact not only on the health of the players, but also keeping the “1-0″ mentality that Bielema has been pushing on his players and his coaches.”What we try to do is understand where we are with our players,” Bielema said. “Some guys, no matter what you do to them during the course of the game, they’re always going to come back on Sunday, and especially giving them Monday off, are going to come back on Tuesday for a strong practice.”Bielema didn’t say either way definitively whether he would prefer to have a bye week or would he rather just keep on moving through the season.”I have nothing to compare it to as a head coach,” Bielema said. “As an assistant coach, you always look forward to those off-weeks because you look forward for your players to have a chance to get healthy.”Hubbard, O-line updatesOne of the major health issues that Bielema addressed was the injury that Paul Hubbard sustained last weekend. Hubbard has been a large contributor to the young receiving core. He has had 19 receptions for 313 yards and two touchdowns on the year.”Sunday’s practice, we didn’t practice him,” Bielema said of Hubbard, who appeared to be knocked out with a concussion Saturday. “But we expect him to go out there [Tuesday] and be able to bounce back.”One of the concerns that some have had was how good the offensive line would be. The O-line lost four starters from last year, which created some skepticism among critics and fans.However, Bielema feels that they have made a lot of progress, not only from last spring, but this year as well.”This was probably the best performance this past weekend in overall pass protection from first quarter to fourth quarter,” Bielema said. “I can’t say enough positive things.”
The Dodgers now have a 6-8 record against left-handed starters this year and 36-25 against right-handers.Puig returnsPuig was able to pinch hit in the eighth inning and grounded out. It was his first plate appearance since Tuesday.“We’re still being a little careful” with Puig, Mattingly said. “We know he’s probably only going to get one at-bat. We’ll see what happens (Saturday).”Baez back, tooThe Dodgers activated reliever Pedro Baez from the 15-day disabled list and optioned left-hander Ian Thomas to Triple-A Oklahoma City prior to the game. Baez struck out all three batters he faced in the ninth inning.“It was a right-handed situation and we had some runs,” Mattingly said, “so it wasn’t like he can’t make any mistakes his first time back in the big leagues for a while, so it was a good situation for him.”Baez had not pitched since May 13 because of a strained right pectoral muscle.AlsoBrandon Beachy threw 60 pitches over four innings for Triple-A Oklahoma City. The right-hander allowed two hits, walked three and struck out two. It was his third minor-league rehab start as he works his way back from Tommy John surgery in April 2014. … Brandon League is expected to make rehab appearances with Oklahoma City on Saturday and Monday. … Paco Rodriguez’s minor-league rehab is over, Mattingly said, but the left-hander is expected to meet with team physician Dr. Neal ElAttrache before he’s cleared to return to the Dodgers, possibly Monday in Arizona. “I think it’s a matter of seeing ‘em,” Mattingly said. “Sometimes you don’t see ‘em. The ones we saw (earlier in the season) were pretty good. (Madison) Bumgarner’s not too bad. And (Jorge) De La Rosa’s given us trouble historically. We saw Bumgarner three times and De La Rosa three times. So the ones we saw were pretty good.”Backup catcher A.J. Ellis got the start against Nicolino because Mattingly said he prefered Ellis to switch-hitting starter Yasmani Grandal against a lefty. Ellis went 0 for 2 against Nicolino.Yasiel Puig, who was still dealing with a broken callus on his left palm, and left-handed hitter Andre Ethier both sat in favor of Scott Van Slyke and Alex Guerrero.Van Slyke hit a two-run home run against Nicolino in the second inning. Another right-handed hitter, Howie Kendrick, had a single and a lineout in his two plate appearances against Nicolino and finished with four hits. Guerrero finished 2 for 4.“We have some really professional hitters, especially against lefties,” Ellis said. “Scott Van Slyke is as good as anybody I’ve ever played with, as far as facing left-handed pitchers. We missed him for a while when he was banged up. Alex Guerrero is dangerous against batting against anybody, but it seems he has big hits against lefties as well.” MIAMI >> Even during the halcyon days of April, when it seemed anything the Dodgers hit left the yard, their lineup had a fatal flaw. It couldn’t hit left-handed pitching. The Dodgers finished April with a .185 average against lefties — bad for a bad team, let alone one expected to contend for a World Series. They’ve gotten better since, batting .257 against southpaws in May and .241 so far in June.Friday they did something they haven’t done all season by beating left-handed starters on consecutive days. One was a hard-throwing veteran (Jon Lester); the other a younger finesse pitcher (Justin Nicolino).Dodgers manager Don Mattingly admitted that this provided some satisfaction. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error