long term – Expo Monet http://expo-monet.com/ Fri, 25 Feb 2022 23:24:04 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://expo-monet.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/icon-63-120x120.png long term – Expo Monet http://expo-monet.com/ 32 32 ESSEX PROPERTY TRUST, INC. Management’s Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations (Form 10-K) https://expo-monet.com/essex-property-trust-inc-managements-discussion-and-analysis-of-financial-condition-and-results-of-operations-form-10-k/ Fri, 25 Feb 2022 23:24:04 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/essex-property-trust-inc-managements-discussion-and-analysis-of-financial-condition-and-results-of-operations-form-10-k/ The following discussion and analysis should be read in conjunction with the accompanying consolidated financial statements and notes thereto. These consolidated financial statements include all adjustments which are, in the opinion of management, necessary to reflect a fair statement of the results and all such adjustments are of a normal recurring nature. OVERVIEW Essex is […]]]>
The following discussion and analysis should be read in conjunction with the
accompanying consolidated financial statements and notes thereto. These
consolidated financial statements include all adjustments which are, in the
opinion of management, necessary to reflect a fair statement of the results and
all such adjustments are of a normal recurring nature.

                                    OVERVIEW

Essex is a self-administered and self-managed REIT that acquires, develops,
redevelops, and manages apartment communities in selected residential areas
located on the West Coast of the United States. Essex owns all of its interests
in its real estate investments, directly or indirectly, through the Operating
Partnership. Essex is the sole general partner of the Operating Partnership and,
as of December 31, 2021, had an approximately 96.6% general partner interest in
the Operating Partnership.

The Company's investment strategy has two components: constant monitoring of
existing markets, and evaluation of new markets to identify areas with the
characteristics that underlie rental growth. The Company's strong financial
condition supports its investment strategy by enhancing its ability to quickly
shift acquisition, development, redevelopment, and disposition activities to
markets that will optimize the performance of the Company's portfolio.

As of December 31, 2021, the Company owned or had ownership interests in 252
operating apartment communities, comprising 61,911 apartment homes, excluding
the Company's ownership in preferred equity co-investments, loan investments,
three operating commercial buildings, and a development pipeline comprised of
one consolidated project and one unconsolidated joint venture project.

The Company’s apartment communities are primarily located in the following major regions:


Southern California (primarily Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, and Ventura
counties)
Northern California (the San Francisco Bay Area)
Seattle Metro (Seattle metropolitan area)

As of December 31, 2021, the Company's development pipeline was comprised of one
consolidated project under development, one unconsolidated joint venture project
under development, and various predevelopment projects aggregating 371 apartment
homes, with total incurred costs of $156.0 million, and estimated remaining
project costs of approximately $61.0 million, $32.6 million of which represents
the Company's estimated remaining costs, for total estimated project costs of
$217.0 million.

From December 31, 2021the Company also had an interest in three commercial properties in operation (totalling approximately 281,000 square feet).


By region, the Company's operating results for 2021 and 2020 and projection for
2022 new housing supply (defined as new multifamily apartment homes and single
family homes, excluding developments with fewer than 50 apartment homes as well
as student, senior and 100% affordable housing), projection for 2022 job growth,
and 2022 estimated Same-Property revenue growth are as follows:

Southern California Region:  As of December 31, 2021, this region represented
43% of the Company's consolidated operating apartment homes. Revenues for "2021
Same-Properties" (as defined below), or "Same-Property revenues," increased 3.2%
in 2021 as compared to 2020. In 2022, the Company projects new residential
supply of 31,750 apartment homes and single family homes, which represents 0.5%
of the total housing stock. The Company projects an increase of 310,000 jobs or
4.0% in the Southern California region.

Northern California Region:  As of December 31, 2021, this region represented
37% of the Company's consolidated operating apartment homes. Same-Property
revenues decreased 5.6% in 2021 as compared to 2020. In 2022, the Company
projects new residential supply of 18,250 apartment homes and single family
homes, which represents 0.8% of the total housing stock. The Company projects an
increase of 157,000 jobs or 4.7% in the Northern California region.

Seattle Metro Region: As of December 31, 2021, this region represented 20% of
the Company's consolidated operating apartment homes. Same-Property revenues
decreased 1.7% in 2021 as compared to 2020. In 2022, the Company projects new
residential supply of 14,800 apartment homes and single family homes, which
represents 1.1% of the total housing stock. The Company projects an increase of
63,000 jobs or 3.6% in the Seattle Metro region.

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In total, the Company projects an increase in 2022 Same-Property revenues of
between 7.0% to 8.5%. Same-Property operating expenses are projected to increase
in 2022 by 3.5% to 4.5%.

The Company’s consolidated operating communities are as follows:

                                                               As of                                         As of
                                                         December 31, 2021                             December 31, 2020
                                                Apartment Homes               %               Apartment Homes               %
Southern California                                     22,190                  43  %                 22,560                  43  %
Northern California                                     19,123                  37  %                 19,319                  37  %
Seattle Metro                                           10,341                  20  %                 10,217                  20  %
Total                                                   51,654                 100  %                 52,096                 100  %



Co-investments, including Wesco I, Wesco III, Wesco IV, Wesco V, Wesco VI,
BEXAEW, BEX II, BEX IV, and 500 Folsom communities, developments under
construction, and preferred equity interest co-investment communities are not
included in the table presented above for both periods. A community previously
held in the BEX III co-investment was consolidated in the second quarter of 2021
and is excluded from the December 31, 2020 table but included in the December
31, 2021 table.

The COVID-19 Pandemic

The United States and other countries around the world are continuing to
experience impacts related to the COVID-19 pandemic and its related variants
which has created considerable instability, disruption, and uncertainty.
Governmental authorities in impacted regions are taking extraordinary steps in
an effort to slow down the spread of the viruses and mitigate its impact on
affected populations. Federal, state and local jurisdictions have implemented
varying forms of requirements related to sponsors and patrons of public
gatherings and required businesses to make changes to their operations in a
manner that negatively affects profitability, resulting in job losses and
related financial impacts that may affect future operations to an unknown
extent. While the California eviction moratorium sunsetted during the third
quarter of 2021, other state and local eviction moratoriums and laws that limit
rent increases during times of emergency and prohibit the ability to collect
unpaid rent during certain timeframes continue to be in effect in various
formats at various regions in which Essex's communities are located, impacting
Essex and its properties. The Company is working to comply with the stated
intent of local, county, state and federal laws. In that regard, the Company has
implemented a wide range of practices to protect and support its employees and
residents. Such measures include instituting a hybrid work model for corporate
associates to work at the Company's corporate offices and remotely, and
transitioning many public interactions with leasing staff to on-line and
telephonic communications;

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the Company's residents, their health,
their employment, and, thus, their ability to pay rent, have been and may
continue to be impacted. To support residents, the Company has implemented the
following steps, including, but not limited to:
•assembling a Resident Response Team to effectively and efficiently respond to
resident needs and concerns with respect to the pandemic;
•structuring payment plans for residents who are unable to pay their rent as a
result of the outbreak and waiving late fees where required or applicable for
those residents; and
•establishing the Essex Cares fund for the purpose of supporting the Company's
residents and communities that are experiencing financial hardships caused by
the COVID-19 pandemic.

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the U.S. and world economies generally,
and on the Company's results in particular, has been, and may continue to be
significant. The long-term impact will largely depend on future developments,
which are highly uncertain and cannot be predicted, including, but not limited
to, whether employees and employers will continue to promote remote work if and
when the pandemic concludes. This includes new information which may emerge
concerning the severity of COVID-19 and related variants, the success of actions
taken to contain or treat COVID-19, future laws that may be enacted, the impact
on job growth and the broader economy, and reactions by consumers, companies,
governmental entities and capital markets. The labor shortage due partly to
various government mandates and vaccine requirements implemented during the
COVID-19 pandemic and supply chain disruptions may negatively impact the
Company's results of operations.

Primarily as a result of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company's cash
delinquencies as a percentage of scheduled rental income for the Company's
stabilized apartment communities or "Same-Property" (stabilized properties
consolidated by the Company for the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020)
remained higher than the pre-pandemic period but improved from 2.5% for 2020 to
1.9% for 2021. The Company has executed some payment plans and will continue to
work with residents
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to collect such cash delinquencies. As a result of continued analysis of the
collectability of delinquencies, reported delinquencies as a percentage of
scheduled rent for the Company's Same-Property portfolio was 2.0% for the year
ended December 31, 2021. As of December 31, 2021, the delinquencies have not had
a material adverse impact to the Company's liquidity position.

The COVID-19 pandemic has not negatively impacted the Company's ability to
access traditional funding sources on the same or reasonably similar terms as
were available in recent periods prior to the pandemic, as demonstrated by the
Company's financing activity during the year ended December 31, 2021 discussed
in the "Liquidity and Capital Resources" section below. The Company is not at
material risk of not meeting the covenants in its credit agreements and is able
to timely service its debt and other obligations.

                             RESULTS OF OPERATIONS

Year Ended Comparison December 31, 2021 to the year ended December 31, 2020


The Company's average financial occupancy for the Company's stabilized apartment
communities or "2021 Same-Property" (stabilized properties consolidated by the
Company for the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020) increased 40 basis
points to 96.4% in 2021 from 96.0% in 2020. Financial occupancy is defined as
the percentage resulting from dividing actual rental income by total scheduled
rental income. Actual rental income represents contractual rental income
pursuant to leases without considering delinquency and concessions. Total
scheduled rental income represents the value of all apartment homes, with
occupied apartment homes valued at contractual rental rates pursuant to leases
and vacant apartment homes valued at estimated market rents. The Company
believes that financial occupancy is a meaningful measure of occupancy because
it considers the value of each vacant apartment home at its estimated market
rate.

Market rates are determined using the recently signed effective rates on new
leases at the property and are used as the starting point in the determination
of the market rates of vacant apartment homes. The Company may increase or
decrease these rates based on a variety of factors, including overall supply and
demand for housing, concentration of new apartment deliveries within the same
submarket which can cause periodic disruption due to greater rental concessions
to increase leasing velocity, and rental affordability. Financial occupancy may
not completely reflect short-term trends in physical occupancy and financial
occupancy rates, and the Company's calculation of financial occupancy may not be
comparable to financial occupancy disclosed by other REITs.

The Company does not take into account delinquency and concessions to calculate
actual rent for occupied apartment homes and market rents for vacant apartment
homes. The calculation of financial occupancy compares contractual rates for
occupied apartment homes to estimated market rents for unoccupied apartment
homes, and thus the calculation compares the gross value of all apartment homes
excluding delinquency and concessions. For apartment communities that are
development properties in lease-up without stabilized occupancy figures, the
Company believes the physical occupancy rate is the appropriate performance
metric. While an apartment community is in the lease-up phase, the Company's
primary motivation is to stabilize the property, which may entail the use of
rent concessions and other incentives, and thus financial occupancy, which is
based on contractual income is not considered the best metric to quantify
occupancy.

The regional breakdown of the Company's 2021 Same-Property portfolio for
financial occupancy for the years ended December 31, 2021 and 2020 is as
follows:
                             Years ended
                            December 31,
                          2021           2020
Southern California         96.8  %     96.0  %
Northern California         96.2  %     96.1  %
Seattle Metro               96.2  %     96.0  %



The following table provides a breakdown of revenue amounts, including revenue attributable to 2021 comparable properties.

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                                                                                         Years Ended
                                                 Number of Apartment                    December 31,                      Dollar              Percentage
Property Revenues ($ in thousands)                      Homes                     2021                 2020               Change                Change
2021 Same-Properties:
Southern California                                    20,800                $   557,906          $   540,771          $  17,135                      3.2  %
Northern California                                    16,072                    490,513              519,746            (29,233)                    (5.6) %
Seattle Metro                                          10,218                    239,819              243,900             (4,081)                    (1.7) %
Total 2021 Same-Property Revenues                      47,090                  1,288,238            1,304,417            (16,179)                    (1.2) %
2021 Non-Same Property Revenues                                                  143,180              181,733            (38,553)                   (21.2) %
Total Property Revenues                                                      $ 1,431,418          $ 1,486,150          $ (54,732)                    (3.7) %



2021 Same-Property Revenues decreased by $16.2 million or 1.2% to $1.3 billion
for 2021. The decrease was primarily attributable to an additional $5.3 million
of cash concessions and $1.2 million in delinquencies compared to the prior year
and due to a decrease of 1.5% in average rental rates from $2,349 for 2020 to
$2,313 for 2021.

2021 Non-Same Property Revenues decreased by $38.6 million or 21.2% to $143.2
million in 2021 compared to $181.7 million in 2020. The decrease was primarily
due to property dispositions in 2020 and the sale of Hidden Valley, Axis 2300,
Park 20, and Devonshire Apartments in 2021 partially offset by the acquisition
of The Village at Toluca Lake.

Management and other fees from affiliates decreased by $0.5 million or 5.2% to
$9.1 million in 2021 from $9.6 million in 2020. The decrease was primarily due
to a decrease in revenues used to calculate management fees as well as a
decrease of the management fee rate for one of the joint ventures.

Property operating expenses, excluding real estate taxes increased by $1.5
million or 0.6% to $264.9 million in 2021 compared to $263.4 million in 2020,
primarily due to an increase of $3.8 million in utilities expenses offset by a
$2.4 million decrease in administrative expenses. 2021 Same-Property operating
expenses, excluding real estate taxes, increased by $5.3 million or 2.2% to
$241.8 million in 2021 compared to $236.5 million in 2020, primarily due to
increases of $4.1 million in utilities expenses, $2.2 million in insurance and
other expenses, and $1.2 million in maintenance and repairs expenses, offset by
a decrease of $2.2 million in administrative expenses.

Real estate taxes increased by $3.4 million or 1.9% to $180.4 million in 2021
compared to $177.0 million in 2020, primarily due to increases in assessed
valuations and tax rates. 2021 Same-Property real estate taxes increased by $3.6
million or 2.4% to $155.0 million in 2021 compared to $151.4 million in 2020
primarily due to increases in assessed valuations and tax rates.

Enterprise-level property management spending increased by $1.6 million i.e. 4.6% to $36.2 million in 2021 compared to $34.6 million in 2020 due to the costs of centralizing certain functions at the building level.


Depreciation and amortization expense decreased by $5.4 million or 1.0% to
$520.1 million in 2021 compared to $525.5 million in 2020, primarily due to a
decrease in amortization expense resulting from certain lease intangibles
becoming fully amortized during 2020 and the sale of Hidden Valley, Axis 2300,
Park 20, and Devonshire Apartments during 2021.

Gain on sale of real estate and land of $143.0 million in 2021 was attributable
to the sale of Hidden Valley, Axis 2300, Park 20, and Devonshire Apartments
during 2021. The Company's $65.0 million gain on sale of real estate and land in
2020 was primarily attributable to the portfolio sale of One South Market and
Museum Park, and the sales of Delano and 416 on Broadway during 2020.

Interest expense decreased by $17.5 million or 7.9% to $203.1 million in 2021
compared to $220.6 million in 2020, primarily due to various debt that was paid
off, matured, or regular principal payments during and after 2020, and lower
average interest rates, which resulted in a decrease in interest expense of
$49.8 million for 2021. These decreases in interest expense were partially
offset by the issuance of new senior unsecured notes which resulted in an
increase of $23.8 million interest expense for 2021 as compared to 2020.
Additionally, there was a $8.5 million decrease in capitalized interest in 2021,
due to a decrease in development activity as compared to the same period in
2020.

Total income from yield swaps of $10.8 million in 2021 consists of monthly settlements related to the Company’s four total return swap contracts with an aggregate notional amount of $224.4 million.

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Interest and other income increased by $57.7 million or 140.7% to $98.7 million
in 2021 compared to $41.0 million in 2020, primarily due to increases of $34.3
million in insurance reimbursements, legal settlements and other driven by a
one-time legal settlement claim, $20.6 million in unrealized gains on marketable
securities, $7.9 million in marketable securities and other income, $4.9 million
in income from early redemption of notes receivable, and $1.3 million in gain on
sale of marketable securities. These increases were offset by a $11.8 million
decrease in interest income resulting from the maturity of a mortgage backed
security investment in 2020.

Equity income from co-investments increased by $45.2 million or 68.0% to $111.7
million in 2021 compared to $66.5 million in 2020, primarily due to increases of
$50.3 million in equity income from non-core co-investments and $11.6 million in
income from preferred equity investments including income from early
redemptions. These increases were offset by decreases of $8.8 million in equity
income from co-investments and $6.5 million in co-investment promote income.

Deferred tax expense on unrealized gain on unconsolidated co-investment of $15.7
million in 2021 resulted from a net unrealized gain of $53.7 million from an
unconsolidated co-investments.

Loss on early retirement of debt, net of $19.0 million in 2021 was primarily due
to the early termination of the Company's
five interest rate swap contracts in conjunction with the partial repayment of
the Company's unsecured term debt and the early repayment of $300.0 million of
senior unsecured notes.

Gain on remeasurement of co-investment of $2.3 million in 2021 resulted from the
Company's purchase of BEX III's 50.0% interest in The Village at Toluca Lake
community in the second quarter of 2021. Gain on remeasurement of $234.7 million
in 2020 resulted from the Company's purchase of Canada Pension Plan Investment
Board's ("CPPIB") 45.0% co-investment interests during the first quarter of
2020.

Year Ended Comparison December 31, 2020 to the year ended December 31, 2019


For the comparison of the years ended December 31, 2020 and December 31, 2019,
refer to Part II, Item 7 "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial
Condition and Results of Operations" on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended
December 31, 2020, filed with the SEC on February 19, 2021 under the subheading
"Comparison of Year Ended December 31, 2020 to the Year Ended December 31,
2019."

Cash and capital resources


The following table sets forth the Company's cash flows for 2021, 2020 and 2019
($ in thousands):
                                             For the year ended December 31,
                                          2021             2020            2019
Cash flow provided by (used in):
Operating activities                  $   905,259      $  803,108      $  919,079
Investing activities                  $  (397,397)     $ (416,900)     $ (527,691)
Financing activities                  $  (533,265)     $ (383,261)     $ (461,689)



Essex's business is operated primarily through the Operating Partnership. Essex
issues public equity from time to time, but does not otherwise generate any
capital itself or conduct any business itself, other than incurring certain
expenses from operating as a public company which are fully reimbursed by the
Operating Partnership. Essex itself does not hold any indebtedness, and its only
material asset is its ownership of partnership interests of the Operating
Partnership. Essex's principal funding requirement is the payment of dividends
on its common stock and preferred stock. Essex's sole source of funding for its
dividend payments is distributions it receives from the Operating Partnership.

From December 31, 2021, Essex held a 96.6% general partner interest and the limited partners held the remaining 3.4% interest in the Operational partnership.


The liquidity of Essex is dependent on the Operating Partnership's ability to
make sufficient distributions to Essex. The primary cash requirement of Essex is
its payment of dividends to its stockholders. Essex also guarantees some of the
Operating Partnership's debt, as discussed further in Notes 7 and 8 to our
consolidated financial statements included in Part IV, Item 15 of this Annual
Report on Form 10-K. If the Operating Partnership fails to fulfill certain of
its debt requirements, which trigger Essex's guarantee obligations, then Essex
will be required to fulfill its cash payment commitments under such guarantees.
However, Essex's only significant asset is its investment in the Operating
Partnership.
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For Essex to maintain its qualification as a REIT, it must pay dividends to its
stockholders aggregating annually at least 90% of its REIT taxable income,
excluding net capital gains. While historically Essex has satisfied this
distribution requirement by making cash distributions to its stockholders, it
may choose to satisfy this requirement by making distributions of other
property, including, in limited circumstances, Essex's own stock. As a result of
this distribution requirement, the Operating Partnership cannot rely on retained
earnings to fund its ongoing operations to the same extent that other companies
whose parent companies are not REITs can. Essex may need to continue to raise
capital in the equity markets to fund the Operating Partnership's working
capital needs, acquisitions and developments.

At December 31, 2021, the Company had $48.4 million of unrestricted cash and
cash equivalents and $191.8 million in marketable securities. The Company
believes that cash flows generated by its operations, existing cash and cash
equivalents, marketable securities balances and availability under existing
lines of credit are sufficient to meet all of its anticipated cash needs during
2022. Additionally, the capital markets continue to be available and the Company
is able to generate cash from the disposition of real estate assets to finance
additional cash flow needs, including continued development and select
acquisitions. In the event that conditions become further exacerbated due to the
COVID-19 pandemic and related economic disruptions or otherwise, the Company may
further utilize other resources such as its cash reserves, lines of credit, or
decreased investment in redevelopment activities to supplement operating cash
flows. The Company is carefully monitoring and managing its cash position in
light of ongoing conditions and levels of operations. The timing, source and
amounts of cash flows provided by financing activities and used in investing
activities are sensitive to changes in interest rates and other fluctuations in
the capital markets environment, which can affect the Company's plans for
acquisitions, dispositions, development and redevelopment activities.

As of December 31, 2021, the Company had $5.4 billion of fixed rate public bonds
outstanding at an average interest rate of 3.3% with maturity dates ranging from
2023 to 2050.

As of December 31, 2021, the Company's mortgage notes payable totaled $639.0
million, net of unamortized premiums and debt issuance costs, which consisted of
$415.4 million in fixed rate debt at an average interest rate of 3.5% and
maturity dates ranging from 2022 to 2028 and $223.6 million of tax-exempt
variable rate demand notes with a weighted average interest rate of 1.1%. The
tax-exempt variable rate demand notes have maturity dates ranging from 2027 to
2046. $224.4 million is subject to total return swaps.

As of December 31, 2021, the Company had two unsecured lines of credit
aggregating $1.24 billion, including a $1.2 billion unsecured line of credit and
a $35.0 million working capital unsecured line of credit. As of December 31,
2021, there was $340.0 million amount outstanding on the $1.2 billion unsecured
line of credit. The interest rate is based on a tiered rate structure tied to
the Company's credit ratings and was LIBOR plus 0.775% as of December 31,
2021. There was $1.3 million outstanding on the Company's $35.0 million working
capital unsecured line of credit as of December 31, 2021. The interest rate on
the amended line is based on a tiered rate structure tied to the Company's
credit ratings and is currently at LIBOR plus 0.775%.

The Company's unsecured lines of credit and unsecured debt agreements contain
debt covenants related to limitations on indebtedness and liabilities and
maintenance of minimum levels of consolidated earnings before depreciation,
interest and amortization. The Company was in compliance with the debt covenants
as of December 31, 2021 and 2020.

The Company pays quarterly dividends from cash available for distribution. Until
it is distributed, cash available for distribution is invested by the Company
primarily in investment grade securities held available for sale or is used by
the Company to reduce balances outstanding under its lines of credit.

Spin-off activity


The Company uses interest rate swaps, interest rate caps, and total return swap
contracts to manage certain interest rate risks. The valuation of these
instruments is determined using widely accepted valuation techniques including
discounted cash flow analysis on the expected cash flows of each derivative.
This analysis reflects the contractual terms of the derivatives, including the
period to maturity, and uses observable market-based inputs, including interest
rate curves. The fair values of interest rate swaps and total return swaps are
determined using the market standard methodology of netting the discounted
future fixed cash receipts (or payments) and the discounted expected variable
cash payments (or receipts). The variable cash payments (or receipts) are based
on an expectation of future interest rates (forward curves) derived from
observable market interest rate curves. The Company incorporates credit
valuation adjustments to appropriately reflect both its own nonperformance risk
and the respective counterparty's nonperformance risk in the fair value
measurements.

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The Company has four total return swap contracts, with an aggregate notional
amount of $224.4 million, that effectively converts $224.4 million of mortgage
notes payable to a floating interest rate based on the Securities Industry and
Financial Markets Association Municipal Swap Index ("SIFMA") plus a spread. The
total return swaps provide fair market value protection on the mortgage notes
payable to our counterparties during the initial period of the total return swap
until the Company's option to call the mortgage notes at par can be exercised.
The Company can currently call all four of the total return swaps, with $224.4
million of the outstanding debt at par. These derivatives do not qualify for
hedge accounting.

As of December 31, 2021 and 2020, the aggregate carrying value of the interest
rate swap contracts was a liability of zero and $2.4 million, respectively. As
of December 31, 2021 and 2020, the swap contracts were presented in the
consolidated balance sheets as a liability of zero and $2.4 million,
respectively, and were included in other liabilities on the consolidated balance
sheets. The aggregate carrying and fair value of the total return swaps was zero
at both December 31, 2021 and 2020.

Hedge ineffectiveness related to cash flow hedges, which is reported in current
year income as interest expense, net was zero, zero, and a loss of $0.2 million,
for the years ended December 31, 2021, 2020, and 2019, respectively.

Issue of common shares


In September 2021, the Company entered into the 2021 ATM Program, a new equity
distribution agreement pursuant to which the Company may offer and sell shares
of its common stock having an aggregate gross sales price of up to $900.0
million. In connection with the 2021 ATM Program, the Company may also enter
into related forward sale agreements, and may sell shares of its common stock
pursuant to these agreements. The use of a forward sale agreement would allow
the Company to lock in a share price on the sale of shares of its common stock
at the time the agreement is executed, but defer receipt of the proceeds from
the sale of shares until a later date should the Company elect to settle such
forward sale agreement, in whole or in part, in shares of common stock.

The 2021 ATM Program replaces the prior equity distribution agreement entered
into in September 2018 (the "2018 ATM Program"), which was terminated upon the
establishment of the 2021 ATM Program. For the year ended December 31, 2021, the
Company did not sell any shares of its common stock through the 2021 ATM Program
or through the 2018 ATM Program. As of December 31, 2021, there were no
outstanding forward purchase agreements, and $900.0 million of shares remain
available to be sold under the 2021 ATM Program. For the year ended December 31,
2020, the Company did not issue any shares of its common stock through the 2018
ATM Program. For the year ended December 31, 2019, the Company issued 228,271
shares of common stock through the 2018 ATM Program at an average price of
$321.56 per share for proceeds of $73.4 million.

Capital expenditure


Non-revenue generating capital expenditures are improvements and upgrades that
extend the useful life of the property. For the year ended December 31, 2021,
non-revenue generating capital expenditures totaled approximately $1,914 per
apartment home. These expenditures do not include expenditures for deferred
maintenance on acquisition properties, expenditures for property renovations and
improvements which are expected to generate additional revenue or cost savings,
and do not include expenditures incurred due to changes in government
regulations that the Company would not have incurred otherwise, costs related to
the COVID-19 pandemic, retail, furniture and fixtures, or expenditures for which
the Company expects to be reimbursed. The Company expects that cash from
operations and/or its lines of credit will fund such expenditures.

Development and pre-development pipeline


The Company defines development projects as new communities that are being
constructed, or are newly constructed and are in a phase of lease-up and have
not yet reached stabilized operations. As of December 31, 2021, the Company's
development pipeline was comprised of one consolidated project under
development, one unconsolidated joint venture project under development and
various consolidated predevelopment projects, aggregating 371 apartment homes,
with total incurred costs of $156.0 million, and estimated remaining project
costs of approximately $61.0 million, $32.6 million of which represents the
Company's estimated remaining costs, for total estimated project costs of $217.0
million.

The Company defines predevelopment projects as proposed communities in
negotiation or in the entitlement process with an expected high likelihood of
becoming entitled development projects. The Company may also acquire land for
future development purposes or sale.

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The Company expects to fund the development and predevelopment communities by
using a combination of some or all of the following sources: its working
capital, amounts available on its lines of credit, construction loans, net
proceeds from public and private equity and debt issuances, and proceeds from
the disposition of assets, if any.

Other sources of capital


The Company utilizes co-investments as an alternative source of capital for
acquisitions of both operating and development communities. As of December 31,
2021, the Company had an interest in 264 apartment homes in communities actively
under development with joint ventures for total estimated costs of $102.0
million. Total estimated remaining costs total approximately $58.0 million, of
which the Company estimates that its remaining investment in these development
joint ventures will be approximately $29.6 million. In addition, the Company had
an interest in 10,257 apartment homes in operating communities with joint
ventures and other investments for a total book value of $565.3 million.

Real estate and other liabilities

The following table summarizes the Company’s unfunded real estate and other future commitments as of December 31, 2021 (in thousands of dollars):

                                                                                                                    Remaining
                                                               Number of Properties           Investment           Commitment
Joint ventures (1):
Preferred equity investments                                               4                $   128,000          $     27,867
Mezzanine loans                                                            2                    140,000                52,734
Non-core co-investments                                                    -                     37,000                16,020

Consolidated:
Real estate under development                                              1                     91,162                 3,000
                                                                                            $   396,162          $     99,621


(1) Excludes approximately $29.6 million from the Corporation of the estimated project costs for Scripps Mesa Apartments which were fully funded.

AT December 31, 2021the Company had operating lease commitments of $167.4 million for land, construction and garage leases expiring from 2025 to 2083. $7.0 million of this commitment is due within the next twelve months.

Variable interest entities


In accordance with accounting standards for consolidation of variable interest
entities ("VIEs"), the Company consolidates the Operating Partnership, 18
DownREIT entities (comprising nine communities) and six co-investments as of
December 31, 2021. As of December 31, 2020, the Company consolidated the
Operating Partnership, 17 DownREIT entities (comprising nine communities), and
five co-investments. The Company consolidates these entities because it is
deemed the primary beneficiary. Essex has no assets or liabilities other than
its investment in the Operating Partnership. The consolidated total assets and
liabilities related to the above consolidated co-investments and DownREIT
entities, net of intercompany eliminations, were approximately $909.3 million
and $320.1 million, respectively, as of December 31, 2021, and $898.5 million
and $326.8 million, respectively, as of December 31, 2020. Noncontrolling
interests in these entities were $122.4 million and $120.8 million as of
December 31, 2021 and 2020, respectively. The Company's financial risk in each
VIE is limited to its equity investment in the VIE. As of December 31, 2021, the
Company did not have any other VIEs of which it was deemed to be the primary
beneficiary and did not have any VIEs of which it was not deemed to be the
primary beneficiary.

Critical accounting estimates


The preparation of consolidated financial statements, in accordance with U.S.
GAAP, requires the Company to make estimates and judgments that affect the
reported amounts of assets, liabilities, revenues and expenses and related
disclosures of contingent assets and liabilities. The Company defines critical
accounting estimates as those estimates that involve a significant level of
estimation uncertainty and have had or are reasonably likely to have a material
impact on the financial condition or results of operations of the Company.  The
Company's critical accounting estimates relate principally to the following key
areas: (i) accounting for the acquisition of investments in real estate
(specifically, the allocation between land and buildings during the
                                       50

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Table of contents year completed December 31, 2020); and (ii) the assessment of events and changes in circumstances indicating whether the Company’s rental properties may be impaired. The Company bases its estimates on historical experience, current market conditions and various other assumptions believed to be reasonable under the circumstances. Actual results may differ from estimates made by management.


The Company accounts for its acquisitions of investments in real estate by
assessing each acquisition to determine if it meets the definition of a business
or if it qualifies as an asset acquisition. We expect that acquisitions of
individual operating communities will generally be viewed as asset acquisitions,
and result in the capitalization of acquisition costs, and the allocation of
purchase price to the assets acquired and liabilities assumed based on the
relative fair value of the respective assets and liabilities.

In making estimates of fair values for purposes of allocating purchase price,
the Company utilizes a number of sources, including independent land appraisals
which consider comparable market transactions, its own analysis of recently
acquired or developed comparable properties in our portfolio for land
comparables and building replacement costs, and other publicly available market
data. In calculating the fair value of identified intangible assets of an
acquired property, the in-place leases are valued based on in-place rent rates
and amortized over the average remaining term of all acquired leases. The
allocation of the total consideration exchanged for a real estate acquisition
between the identifiable assets and liabilities and the depreciation we
recognize over the estimated useful life of the asset could be impacted by
different assumptions and estimates used in the calculation. The reasonable
likelihood that the estimate could have a material impact on the financial
condition of the Company is based on the total consideration exchanged for real
estate during any given year. The allocation of the value between land and
building was a critical accounting estimate during the year ended December 31,
2020 as result of the potential material impact of the Company's acquisition of
a land parcel and six communities for a total purchase price of $463.4 million.

The Company periodically assesses the carrying value of its real estate
investments for indicators of impairment. The judgments regarding the existence
of impairment indicators are based on monitoring investment market conditions
and performance for operating properties including the net operating income for
the most recent 12 month period, monitoring estimated costs for properties under
development, the Company's ability to hold and its intent with regard to each
asset, and each property's remaining useful life. Although each of these may
result in an impairment indicator, the shortening of an expected holding period
due to the potential sale of a property is the most likely impairment indicator.
Whenever events or changes in circumstances indicate that the carrying amount of
a property held for investment may not be fully recoverable, the carrying amount
is evaluated. If the sum of the property's expected future cash flows
(undiscounted and without interest charges) is less than the carrying amount of
the property, then the Company will recognize an impairment loss equal to the
excess of the carrying amount over the fair value of the property. Changes in
operating and market conditions may result in a change of our intent to hold the
property through the end of its useful life and may impact the assumptions
utilized to determine the future cash flows of the real estate investment.

The Company bases its accounting estimates on historical experience and various other assumptions believed to be reasonable under the circumstances. Actual results may differ from these estimates and these estimates may differ under different assumptions or conditions.

Funds from operations


Funds from Operations ("FFO") is a financial measure that is commonly used in
the REIT industry. The Company presents FFO and FFO excluding non-core items
(referred to as "Core FFO") as supplemental operating performance measures. FFO
and Core FFO are not used by the Company as, nor should they be considered to
be, alternatives to net income computed under U.S. GAAP as an indicator of the
Company's operating performance or as alternatives to cash from operating
activities computed under U.S. GAAP as an indicator of the Company's ability to
fund its cash needs.

FFO and Core FFO are not meant to represent a comprehensive system of financial
reporting and do not present, nor do they intend to present, a complete picture
of the Company's financial condition and operating performance. The Company
believes that net income computed under U.S. GAAP is the primary measure of
performance and that FFO and Core FFO are only meaningful when they are used in
conjunction with net income. The Company considers FFO and Core FFO to be useful
financial performance measurements of an equity REIT because, together with net
income and cash flows, FFO and Core FFO provide investors with additional bases
to evaluate operating performance and ability of a REIT to incur and service
debt and to fund acquisitions and other capital expenditures and to pay
dividends. By excluding gains or losses related to sales of depreciated
operating properties and excluding real estate depreciation (which can vary
among owners of identical assets in similar condition based on historical cost
accounting and useful life estimates), FFO can help investors compare the
operating performance of a real estate company between periods or as compared to
different companies. By further adjusting for items that are not considered part
of the Company's core business operations, Core FFO allows investors to compare
the core
                                       51
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operating performance of the Company to its performance in prior reporting
periods and to the operating performance of other real estate companies without
the effect of items that by their nature are not comparable from period to
period and tend to obscure the Company's actual operating results. The Company
believes that its consolidated financial statements, prepared in accordance with
U.S. GAAP, provide the most meaningful picture of its financial condition and
its operating performance.

In calculating FFO, the Company follows the definition of this measure published by NAREIT, which is the leading association for the REIT industry. The Company believes that, under the NAREIT FFO definition, the two most significant adjustments to net income are (i) the exclusion of amortization at historical cost and (ii) the exclusion of gains and losses from sale of previously depreciated properties. The Company agrees that these two NAREIT adjustments are useful to investors for the following reasons:


(a)historical cost accounting for real estate assets in accordance with U.S.
GAAP assumes, through depreciation charges, that the value of real estate assets
diminishes predictably over time. NAREIT stated in its White Paper on Funds from
Operations "since real estate asset values have historically risen or fallen
with market conditions, many industry investors have considered presentations of
operating results for real estate companies that use historical cost accounting
to be insufficient by themselves." Consequently, NAREIT's definition of FFO
reflects the fact that real estate, as an asset class, generally appreciates
over time and depreciation charges required by U.S. GAAP do not reflect the
underlying economic realities.

(b)REITs were created as a legal form of organization in order to encourage
public ownership of real estate as an asset class through investment in firms
that were in the business of long-term ownership and management of real estate.
The exclusion, in NAREIT's definition of FFO, of gains and losses from the sales
of previously depreciated operating real estate assets allows investors and
analysts to readily identify the operating results of the long-term assets that
form the core of a REIT's activity and assists in comparing those operating
results between periods.

Management believes that it has consistently applied the NAREIT definition of
FFO to all periods presented. However, there is judgment involved and other
REITs' calculation of FFO may vary from the NAREIT definition for this measure,
and thus their disclosure of FFO may not be comparable to the Company's
calculation.

The table below is a reconciliation of net income available to common shareholders to FFO and base FFO for the years ended December 31, 20212020 and 2019.

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Contents

                                                                       As 

from and for the years ended the 31st of December,

                                                                      2021                  2020                2019
                                                                       ($ in thousands, except per share amounts)
OTHER DATA:
Funds from operations attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders:
Net income available to common stockholders                    $       488,554          $  568,870          $  439,286
Adjustments:
Depreciation and amortization                                          520,066             525,497             483,750
Gains not included in FFO attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders                                          (145,253)           (301,886)            (79,468)
Impairment loss                                                              -               1,825               7,105
Impairment loss from unconsolidated co-investments                           -                   -              11,484

Depreciation and amortization from unconsolidated
co-investments                                                          61,059              51,594              60,655

Minority interests related to Operational partnership
units

                                                                   17,191              19,912              15,343

Depreciation attributable to third-party ownership and other

                                                                     (571)               (539)             (1,805)
Funds from operations attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders                                   $       941,046          $  865,273          $  936,350
Non-core items:

Expensed acquisition and investment related costs                          203               1,591                 168
Deferred tax expense on unrealized gain on
unconsolidated co-investment (1)                                        15,668               1,531               1,457
Gain on sale of marketable securities                                   (3,400)             (2,131)             (1,271)
Unrealized gains on marketable securities                              (33,104)            (12,515)             (5,710)
Provision for credit losses                                                141                 687                   -
Equity income from non-core co-investment (2)                          (55,602)             (5,289)             (4,143)
Interest rate hedge ineffectiveness                                          -                   -                 181
 Loss (gain) on early retirement of debt, net                           19,010              22,883              (3,717)
Loss (gain) on early retirement of debt from
unconsolidated co-investment                                                25                 (38)                  -
Co-investment promote income                                                 -              (6,455)               (809)
Income from early redemption of preferred equity
investments                                                             (8,469)               (210)             (3,562)

Accelerated interest income from the maturity of the investment in mortgage-backed securities

                                                  -             (11,753)             (7,032)

General and administrative and other, net                                1,026              14,958               1,181

Insurance reimbursements, legal and other settlements, net

                                                                    (35,234)                (81)               (858)
Core funds from operations attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders                                   $       

841 310 $868,451 $912,235
Weighted average number of shares outstanding, diluted (FFO) (3)

                                                               67,335              67,726              68,199
Funds from operations attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders per share - diluted               $         13.98          $    12.78          $    13.73
Core funds from operations attributable to common
stockholders and unitholders per share - diluted               $         

12:49 $12.82 $13.38




(1)Represents deferred tax expense related to net unrealized gains on technology
co-investments.
(2)Represents the Company's share of co-investment income from technology
co-investments.
(3)Assumes conversion of all outstanding OP Units into shares of the Company's
common stock and excludes DownREIT units.

                                       53
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  Table of     Contents
Net Operating Income

Net operating income ("NOI") and Same-Property NOI are considered by management
to be important supplemental performance measures to earnings from operations
included in the Company's consolidated statements of income. The presentation of
Same-Property NOI assists with the presentation of the Company's operations
prior to the allocation of depreciation and any corporate-level or
financing-related costs. NOI reflects the operating performance of a community
and allows for an easy comparison of the operating performance of individual
communities or groups of communities. In addition, because prospective buyers of
real estate have different financing and overhead structures, with varying
marginal impacts to overhead by acquiring real estate, NOI is considered by many
in the real estate industry to be a useful measure for determining the value of
a real estate asset or group of assets. The Company defines Same-Property NOI as
Same-Property revenues less Same-Property operating expenses, including property
taxes. Please see the reconciliation of earnings from operations to NOI and
Same-Property NOI, which in the table below is the NOI for stabilized properties
consolidated by the Company for the periods presented ($ in thousands):
                                                       2021            2020            2019
Earnings from operations                            $ 529,995      $  491,441      $  481,112
Adjustments:
Corporate-level property management expenses           36,188          34,573          34,067
Depreciation and amortization                         520,066         525,497         483,750
Management and other fees from affiliates              (9,138)         (9,598)         (9,527)
General and administrative                             51,838          65,388          54,262
Merger and integration expenses                             -               -               -

Acquisition and investment costs expensed 203 1,591

             168
Impairment loss                                             -           1,825           7,105
(Gain) Loss on sale of real estate and land          (142,993)        (64,967)          3,164
NOI                                                   986,159       1,045,750       1,054,101
Less: Non Same-Property NOI                           (94,755)       (129,158)        (77,204)
Same-Property NOI                                   $ 891,404      $  916,592      $  976,897



Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements in this "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial
Condition and Results of Operations," and elsewhere in this Annual Report on
Form 10-K which are not historical facts may be considered forward-looking
statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as
amended (the Securities Act") and Section 21E of the Exchange Act, including
statements regarding the Company's expectations, estimates, assumptions, hopes,
intentions, beliefs and strategies regarding the future. Words such as
"expects," "assumes," "anticipates," "may," "will," "intends," "plans,"
"projects," "believes," "seeks," "future," "estimates," and variations of such
words and similar expressions are intended to identify such forward-looking
statements. Such forward-looking statements include, among other things,
statements regarding the Company's expectations related to the continued impact
of the COVID-19 pandemic and related variants on the Company's business,
financial condition and results of operations and the impact of any additional
measures taken to mitigate the impact of the pandemic, the Company's intent,
beliefs or expectations with respect to the timing of completion of current
development and redevelopment projects and the stabilization of such projects,
the timing of lease-up and occupancy of its apartment communities, the
anticipated operating performance of its apartment communities, the total
projected costs of development and redevelopment projects, co-investment
activities, qualification as a REIT under the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as
amended, 2022 Same-Property revenue and operating expenses generally and in
specific regions, the real estate markets in the geographies in which the
Company's properties are located and in the United States in general, the
adequacy of future cash flows to meet anticipated cash needs, its financing
activities and the use of proceeds from such activities, the availability of
debt and equity financing, general economic conditions including the potential
impacts from such economic conditions, including as a result of the COVID-19
pandemic and governmental measures intended to prevent its spread, trends
affecting the Company's financial condition or results of operations, changes to
U.S. tax laws and regulations in general or specifically related to REITs or
real estate, changes to laws and regulations in jurisdictions in which
communities the Company owns are located, and other information that is not
historical information.

While the Company's management believes the assumptions underlying its
forward-looking statements are reasonable, such forward-looking statements
involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors, many of which
are beyond the Company's control, which could cause the actual results,
performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any
future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such
forward-looking statements. The
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  Table of     Contents
Company cannot assure the future results or outcome of the matters described in
these statements; rather, these statements merely reflect the Company's current
expectations of the approximate outcomes of the matters discussed. Factors that
might cause the Company's actual results, performance or achievements to differ
materially from those expressed or implied by these forward-looking statements
include, but are not limited to, the following: the continued impact of the
COVID-19 pandemic and related variants, which remains inherently uncertain as to
duration and severity, and any additional governmental measures taken to limit
its spread, and other potential future outbreaks of infectious diseases or other
health concerns, which could continue to adversely affect the Company's business
and its tenants, and cause a significant downturn in general economic
conditions, the real estate industry, and the markets in which the Company's
communities are located; uncertainty regarding ongoing hostility between Russia
and the Ukraine and the related impact on macroeconomic conditions as a result
of such conflict; the Company may fail to achieve its business objectives; the
actual completion of development and redevelopment projects may be subject to
delays; the stabilization dates of such projects may be delayed; the Company may
abandon or defer development or redevelopment projects for a number of reasons,
including changes in local market conditions which make development less
desirable, increases in costs of development, increases in the cost of capital
or lack of capital availability, resulting in losses; the total projected costs
of current development and redevelopment projects may exceed expectations; such
development and redevelopment projects may not be completed; development and
redevelopment projects and acquisitions may fail to meet expectations; estimates
of future income from an acquired property may prove to be inaccurate; occupancy
rates and rental demand may be adversely affected by competition and local
economic and market conditions; there may be increased interest rates and
operating costs; the Company may be unsuccessful in the management of its
relationships with its co-investment partners; future cash flows may be
inadequate to meet operating requirements and/or may be insufficient to provide
for dividend payments in accordance with REIT requirements; changes in laws or
regulations; the terms of any refinancing may not be as favorable as the terms
of existing indebtedness; unexpected difficulties in leasing of development
projects; volatility in financial and securities markets; the Company's failure
to successfully operate acquired properties; unforeseen consequences from
cyber-intrusion; the Company's inability to maintain our investment grade credit
rating with the rating agencies; government approvals, actions and initiatives,
including the need for compliance with environmental requirements; and those
further risks, special considerations, and other factors discussed in Item 1A,
Risk Factors, of this Form 10-K, and those risk factors and special
considerations set forth in the Company's other filings with the SEC which may
cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be
materially different from any future results, performance or achievements
expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Additionally, the
risks, uncertainties and other factors set forth above or otherwise referred to
in this Annual Report on Form 10-K and the other reports that the Company has
filed with the SEC may be further amplified by the global impact of the COVID-19
pandemic and related variants. All forward-looking statements are made as of the
date hereof, the Company assumes no obligation to update or supplement this
information for any reason, and therefore, they may not represent the Company's
estimates and assumptions after the date of this report.

© Edgar Online, source Previews

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Sanne: nominated for the Hedge Fund Management European Services Awards https://expo-monet.com/sanne-nominated-for-the-hedge-fund-management-european-services-awards/ Wed, 16 Feb 2022 08:44:06 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/sanne-nominated-for-the-hedge-fund-management-european-services-awards/ The awards annually recognize and reward European hedge fund service providers who have demonstrated exceptional customer service, innovative product development and strong and sustainable business growth over the past 12 months. It is always a great honor to receive this type of recognition for our exceptional work in the field of hedge fund administration. As […]]]>

The awards annually recognize and reward European hedge fund service providers who have demonstrated exceptional customer service, innovative product development and strong and sustainable business growth over the past 12 months.

It is always a great honor to receive this type of recognition for our exceptional work in the field of hedge fund administration. As a company, we are living in an exciting time of growth and innovation, all centered on delivering exceptional service and value to our customers to enable their success. Our teams of experts have deep experience in the hedge fund industry and are committed to developing long-term relationships to meet the ever-changing and evolving needs of our clients. I am extremely proud of our hedging business.”

Richard Murray

Global Product Manager

Congratulations to all the other shortlisted companies. The winners will be announced on Thursday April 21, 2022 at an awards ceremony at the iconic Victoria and Albert Museum in London.

Warning

Sanne Group plc published this content on February 15, 2022 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by publicunedited and unmodified, on February 16, 2022 08:43:02 UTC.

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Licoricia of Winchester: Prince Charles visit, road closures, timetables and traffic management https://expo-monet.com/licoricia-of-winchester-prince-charles-visit-road-closures-timetables-and-traffic-management/ Wed, 09 Feb 2022 14:07:21 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/licoricia-of-winchester-prince-charles-visit-road-closures-timetables-and-traffic-management/ The city of Winchester is gearing up for a royal nomination as Prince Charles is due to attend the grand unveiling of the Licoricia statue on Thursday February 10. Preparations intensified ahead of the big day on Monday, with the bronze sculpture of the influential Jewish financier and her son, Asher, driven from Stroud in […]]]>

The city of Winchester is gearing up for a royal nomination as Prince Charles is due to attend the grand unveiling of the Licoricia statue on Thursday February 10.

Preparations intensified ahead of the big day on Monday, with the bronze sculpture of the influential Jewish financier and her son, Asher, driven from Stroud in Gloucestershire to its new home outside the Winchester Arch in Jewry Street.

Workmen lifted the statue onto its base using a small crane, where it currently remains partially covered, ready for the Prince of Wales to reveal the finished piece.

The unveiling will mark the end of a successful long-term campaign by the Licoricia of Winchester appeal, which has spanned five years and raised over £150,000.

Large crowds are expected for the occasion, with road closures and traffic management measures planned to accommodate spectators.

Here’s everything you need to know ahead of Thursday’s event.

What road closures will be in place?

Jewry Street at the top of St George’s Street will be fully closed from 9.30am to 4.00pm.

On St George’s Street, one lane will be closed to traffic turning right at the junction with Jewry Street. However, traffic may turn left at the junction to Main Street.

Tower Street will be closed between the Jewry Street and Tower Road junctions.

Access to an exit from the Tower Street car park will still be possible from the entrance and exit on Sussex Street and Tower Street.

When should I arrive?

Spectators are advised to congregate either at the Arch in Jewry Street or near Castle Avenue near The Great Hall from 11.30am, with the unveiling expected shortly after midday.

Traffic and event officers will be in place during the tour, supported by police officers to ensure a safe and secure occasion.

How should I get there?

Winchester is expected to be busier than normal, and Hampshire County Council has advised anyone entering the town to travel by public transport, use Park & ​​Ride and walk where possible.

There are four P&R car parks: South Winchester, Pitt and East Winchester – Barfield and St Catherine’s car parks.

Why is Prince Charles unveiling the statue?

The Prince of Wales has worked for many years to encourage inter-religious dialogue and has been Patron of the Jewish Museum since 2008; World Jewish Relief since 2015; Holocaust Memorial Day Trust since 2015; and Jewish Lads and Girls Brigade since 2020.

Her Royal Highness will also see a statue of HM Queen Victoria during her visit, which was commissioned to mark her Golden Jubilee.

Who is Licorice?

Licoricia of Winchester was a leading figure in the community in the 13th century.

Although she was twice widowed, she managed to raise her family, run her business and thrive in a hostile society.

She was one of the main financiers of Henry III and his queen, Eleanor. Money raised from Licoricia and the estate of her second husband David helped build Westminster Abbey and its rich shrine to Edward the Confessor.

She was murdered along with her Christian maid in the city, with the perpetrator never brought to justice.

The five-year project to install a statue of Licoricia aims to educate people about England’s little-known but significant medieval Jewish community; to be a new gateway to the study of Winchester’s royal medieval past; promote tolerance and diversity in today’s society; inspire women and show the importance of education to provide opportunities; and to be a lasting artistic enhancement to the town of Winchester.

On the base of the statue are words from Leviticus: “Love your neighbor as yourself” – in English and Hebrew.

Maggie Carver, Chair of the Licorica Appeal, said: “The trustees are deeply honored that Her Royal Highness has agreed to unveil Winchester’s Licoricia statue. In doing so, the Prince underlines the historical significance of medieval Jewry in Winchester’s royal past and the continued importance of strong interfaith understanding.

“We also welcome the presence of Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and other religious leaders. His blessing of the statue will celebrate the difficult history of Jews in England across a thousand years and embody the continued need to educate today’s citizens about the relevance of their common heritage in creating a better society.

Jews were part of the English community from 1067 until the expulsion in 1290, arriving after the Norman Conquest in 1066 almost a thousand years ago. They contributed to the building of iconic places of worship such as Westminster Abbey and Lincoln Cathedral, among other institutions, as well as to commerce and culture.

Jewry Street in Winchester was where the Jewish community was based.

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Sunburn — The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics — 1.20.22 https://expo-monet.com/sunburn-the-morning-read-of-whats-hot-in-florida-politics-1-20-22/ Thu, 03 Feb 2022 06:17:46 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/?p=1004 Good Thursday morning. Jacksonville-based logistics juggernaut Crowley announced that it’s bringing Marcus Jadotte on board as senior vice president of Government Relations. In his new role, he will helm Crowley’s legislative and regulatory advocacy efforts and boost awareness of its growing defense and civilian government services offerings among federal, state and local officials. He will […]]]>

Good Thursday morning.

Jacksonville-based logistics juggernaut Crowley announced that it’s bringing Marcus Jadotte on board as senior vice president of Government Relations.

In his new role, he will helm Crowley’s legislative and regulatory advocacy efforts and boost awareness of its growing defense and civilian government services offerings among federal, state and local officials. He will be based in Washington, D.C.

“I am pleased to join Crowley and look forward to advancing the company’s best-in-class solutions for the U.S. maritime industry and beyond, including the company’s burgeoning energy, transportation and technology services,” Jadotte said.

Marcus Jadotte takes the helm as Crowley’s head lobbyist.

Jadotte most recently worked as vice president of federal government relations at Raytheon Technologies, one of the largest aerospace and defense contractors in the U.S. He has also worked in the C-suite at aviation services provider AAR and NASCAR.

He also served as assistant secretary for industry and analysis for the International Trade Administration at the U.S. Department of Commerce during the Barack Obama administration and the U.S. Department of Labor during the Bill Clinton administration.

Jadotte’s Florida connections include stints as chief of staff to U.S. Reps. Peter Deutsch and Debbie Wasserman Schultz, as well as an economics degree earned at Florida State University.

“Through his extensive experience bridging the public and private sectors, Marcus will further strengthen Crowley’s engagement with policymakers through leadership and outreach that builds trust, innovative policies and effective advocacy across our services for commercial and government customers,” said Parker Harrison, Crowley’s senior vice president and general counsel.

___

Florida Politics’ roster is expanding next week, with the addition of Gray Rohrer.

Rohrer comes to Florida Politics from the Orlando Sentinel, where he has worked as the Tallahassee Bureau reporter covering a wide range of news beats, including the Legislature.

At Florida Politics, he will use his expertise to provide Florida Politics’ readers with timely, insightful coverage on economic development and budget issues in a Legislative Session where lawmakers are poised to OK another $100 billion-plus budget.

Rohrer is a graduate of the University of Central Florida, where he earned a degree in political science. He has written for numerous publications throughout his 15-year career covering politics in the Sunshine State.

He launched his career covering local politics for the Beaches Leader Newspapers and the Cape Coral Daily Breeze before focusing jumping up to statehouse coverage, first for Sunshine State News and later at LobbyTools, where he anchored their coverage of property insurance, gambling, economy, labor, real estate, transportation, technology and budget issues.

In 2015, after working as a freelancer covering the special redistricting Session for The Associated Press, he joined the Orlando Sentinel.

Look for his first Florida Politics byline next week.

— SITUATIONAL AWARENESS —

@PBump: [guy on Twitter] “i am certain about this thing that I am wrong about”

@SamStein: Some folks will be surprised that (Joe) Biden said he was surprised by how stalwart Republican opposition to him would be.

@GovRonDeSantis: Protecting life does not end with the unborn. This Session, I called on the Legislature to promote adoption & foster care, so all Floridians have a fair chance in life. Florida has 4,000 more licensed caregivers than in 2019 & I am proposing additional funds for foster parents.

@NikkiFried: As Governor, I’ll protect a woman’s freedom to decide.

Tweet, tweet:

@JasmenRogers: Rep. Erin Grall (the bill sponsor) mentions that her sister had an abortion … says she’s pushing this bill to honor her sister. HOW can you honor your sister’s autonomy and decision to do what’s best … by restricting that choice?!?

@HeatherGBarwick: She honors me because that was the biggest mistake I made in my entire life. And more than honoring me, she honors my lost child.

@RepJoseOliva: @JoeGruters A government-enforced mandate requiring private business to engage in displays of allegiance for the purpose of advancing freedom is the antithesis of freedom. Let’s rethink that one.

@NateMonroeTU: the capitolist is just fulfilling every journalist’s ideal: comfort the comforted and afflict the afflicted.

@MDixon55: As I just heard it put: “Broward days, the one day of year the Capitol is full of Democrats”

Tweet, tweet:

@MattNorlander: Simply incredible. Florida State wins a 13th straight overtime game. Never been done before. FSU 79, Duke 78. Never get involved in a land war in Asia, and never get involved in an overtime game against Leonard Hamilton.

@BChesky: Starting today, I’m living on Airbnb. I’ll be staying in a different town or city every couple weeks

— DAYS UNTIL —

‘Ozark’ final season begins — 1; ‘Billions’ begins — 3; Red Dog Blue Dog charity event — 5; James Madison Institute’s Stanley Marshall Day Celebration in Jacksonville — 8; XXIV Olympic Winter Games begins — 15; Super Bowl LVI — 24; Will Smith’s ‘Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ reboot premieres — 24; Discover Boating Miami International Boat Show begins — 27; season four of “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel’ begins — 27; Synapse Florida tech summit begins — 28; ‘The Walking Dead’ final season part two begins — 31; Daytona 500 — 31; Special Election for Jacksonville City Council At-Large Group 3 — 34; CPAC begins — 35; St. Pete Grand Prix — 36; Joe Biden to give State of the Union — 40; ‘The Batman’ premieres — 43; the third season of ‘Atlanta’ begins — 62; season two of ‘Bridgerton’ begins — 64; The Oscars — 66; Macbeth with Daniel Craig and Ruth Negga begin performances on Broadway — 68; Grammys rescheduled in Las Vegas — 73; federal student loan payments will resume — 101;’ Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’ premieres — 106;’ Top Gun: Maverick’ premieres — 127;’ Platinum Jubilee’ for Queen Elizabeth II — 133;’ Thor: Love and Thunder’ premieres — 170; San Diego Comic-Con 2022 — 181; Michael Mann and Meg Gardiner novel ‘Heat 2’ publishes — 201; ‘The Lord of the Rings’ premieres on Amazon Prime — 225;’ Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’ sequel premieres — 260; ‘Black Panther 2’ premieres — 295; ‘The Flash’ premieres — 298; ‘Avatar 2′ premieres — 330;’ Captain Marvel 2′ premieres — 393;’ John Wick: Chapter 4′ premieres — 428; ‘Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania’ premieres — 554;’ Dune: Part Two’ premieres — 638; Opening Ceremony of the 2024 Olympic Games — 918.

— TOP STORY —

Donald Trump spent weekend stewing that ‘wiseguy’ Ron DeSantis won’t kiss his ring“ via Asawin Suebsaeng and Adam Rawnsley of Yahoo News — In recent weeks, if you’ve run in the ex-President’s inner circle or floated in and out of his social or political orbits, chances are high that you’ve heard Trump casually insulting DeSantis, even in conversations that initially had absolutely nothing to do with DeSantis. Ever eager to protect his turf and with an eye on 2024, Trump has gossiped with certain confidants and advisers about DeSantis’ political vulnerabilities and “weaknesses.” On several occasions, the twice-impeached former President has lately told associates that if they’re asked about the DeSantis-Trump tensions on TV, they should decline to confirm or deny the existence of a simmering cold war between the two conservative icons.

Wiseguys: Is the Trump/DeSantis feud heating up?

—“Looks like DeSantis could turn into Trump’s personal nightmare” via Charlotte Klein of Vanity Fair

Lincoln Project teases ‘divorce’ between Trump and DeSantis” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics — The ex-Republican operatives at the Lincoln Project are gleefully exploiting the latest GOP crackup, with an ad buy promoting the so-called “divorce” between Trump and DeSantis. The spot is a rerun. “Sad!” was first launched in September. But the context is fresher, with Trump and DeSantis seemingly engaged in a rhetorical Cold War that could heat up on little notice. The placements are deliberate and provocative, with ad buys in Palm Beach, where Trump could see it, and Tallahassee, where the Governor might view it. A co-founder of the group contextualizes the most recent buy.

To watch the ad, click on the image below:

Roger Stone slams DeSantis for ‘disloyalty’ to Trump” via Lisa J. Huriash of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — Notorious provocateur Stone warned DeSantis to step aside for Trump in 2024, slamming DeSantis’s “disloyalty” to Trump and implying the former President could pull his support. His warning came after reports that a rift was growing between Trump and DeSantis over COVID-19 vaccines and their shared aspirations for the 2024 Republican nomination. “Gov. Ron DeSantis refuses to put his own presidential ambitions on hold until President Donald Trump has decided to whether he wants to run again,” Stone said in a YouTube video posted Wednesday. “I consider that to be an incredible act of disloyalty and ingratitude.” Stone called DeSantis “an unknown congressman with a bad haircut, an ill-fitting suit and an undistinguished record in Congress until President Donald Trump’s endorsement lifted him to the Republican nomination” in 2018.

Lara Trump says DeSantis needs ‘another opportunity’ to endorse Trump in 2024” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics — On Wednesday, Lara Trump discounted rumors of “bad blood” between Trump and DeSantis while suggesting Florida’s Governor may just need “another opportunity” to demonstrate his support for Trump ahead of the 2024 election. Lara Trump was on Varney & Company on the Fox Business Network, where she was asked to respond to a report that it was “too much to ask” for DeSantis to preemptively endorse another Trump term in 2024.

—DATELINE TALLY —

15-week abortion ban passes first test in Legislature” via Skyler Swisher of the Orlando Sentinel — A House committee advanced a 15-week ban on most abortions on a 12-6 party-line vote in the first legislative debate on the controversial bill. Abortion is presently legal up to the 24th week of pregnancy in Florida. Rep. Grall, the bill’s sponsor, said abortion needs to be limited because medicine and science have changed since the 1973 Roe v. Wade U.S. Supreme Court decision that established a constitutional right to abortion. “This is not an abortion ban,” she said. “This is about 15 weeks. This is about having all your available options at the ready for you for 15 weeks.” But Democrats said it would interfere with what should be a private medical decision and particularly hurt low-income women and people of color who lack access to health care.

Erin Grall’s abortion bill takes a big step forward.

Democrats swarm abortion bill at first committee stop” via Jason Delgado of Florida Politics

Florida abortion bill will affect access across the South, advocates say” via Kirby Wilson of the Tampa Bay Times — The ban on abortion after 15 weeks proposed by Florida Republicans won’t just affect Florida if it becomes law. For years, as nearby states have passed laws to limit abortion access, Southerners have made their way to the Sunshine State to take advantage of Florida’s relatively strong abortion protections. If a 15-week ban passes, access to abortion for people from out of state could be curtailed, advocates on both sides of the issue say. “If you look at Texas, they haven’t had access to abortion care beyond six weeks for four months,” said Laura Goodhue, executive director of the Florida Alliance of Planned Parenthood Affiliates. “You can imagine if access were eliminated in Florida, what it would look like in the South.”

Senate approves Governor’s emergency fund, but slashes price tag — The full Senate voted in favor of establishing a pot of money for the Governor to use during states of emergency. As Matt Dixon of POLITICO Florida reports, the chamber’s plan sets the account balance at $500 million, which is just half of $1 billion DeSantis requested in his budget proposal. The proposal was pitched last year but fell through after it was determined that the state could not seed the account with federal money. The Senate’s 2022 plan (SB 96/SB 98) would fill the pot of money with general revenue dollars. The House version of the bill, introduced Tuesday, would provide the full $1 billion.

Wilton Simpson says he’d vote for constitutional carry bill” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics — Simpson says he would support removing laws requiring a concealed-weapons permit to carry a gun if it comes to a vote. Simpson made the comment to reporters Wednesday after conservatives at the Republican Liberty Caucus said they met with the Senate President. The group has been among a cohort of pro-gun rights organizations pushing for “constitutional carry.” However, Simpson said he would not get involved in constitutional carry legislation until it gets to the Senate floor. That differed from comments one gun rights organization said Simpson made during the meeting. “Simpson told the group he ‘would support, vote yes, and challenge senators to bring a constitutional carry bill,’” according to an email.

Locked and loaded: Wilton Simpson is good with constitutional carry.

Senate passes health care liability protections as providers look to House to do the same” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics — A must-pass bill for Florida’s nursing homes, doctors and hospitals cleared the Florida Senate Wednesday by a mostly partisan 22-13 vote. Democratic Sen. Linda Stewart was the only member of her party in the chamber to support the bill. Sponsored by Sen. Danny Burgess, the bill (SB 7014) extends through June 1, 2023, the protections health care providers currently have from COVID-19 related lawsuits. Senate Democrats all voted against the measure. Four senators have excused absences and did not vote. The current law that shields businesses and health care providers from COVID-19-related lawsuits was one of the first measures passed by the Legislature during the 2021 Session. The law clarifies that to successfully sue a health care provider for COVID-19, the plaintiff must prove gross negligence or intentional misconduct.

Senate presidential search exemption proposal diverges from House version as it approaches final committee” via Kelly Hayes of Florida Politics — Legislation that would provide a public records exemption on information about applicants seeking a state university or college presidential position is headed to its final committee stop after clearing the Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee. However, the Senate bill looks a little different from the House version, which is on to its second committee after garnering approval at its first stop Tuesday. The measure (SB 520), filed by Sen. Jeff Brandes, cleared its second committee with one amendment that provided the bill be effective upon becoming law. The Senate legislation approaches its third committee without a key amendment tacked on in a House meeting Tuesday, an alteration that changed guidelines in the bill.

—ETCH-A-SKETCH—

Senate ignores DeSantis’ redistricting map, moves forward with plan less friendly to GOP” via Skyler Swisher and Steven Lemongello of the Orlando Sentinel — The Florida Senate moved forward with a congressional redistricting map that carves out fewer Republican-friendly districts than a surprise proposal put forth by DeSantis earlier this week. The Senate map is seen as the plan to keep much of the status quo in place, reinforcing the 16-11 Republican advantage over Democrats in congressional seats and even giving Democrats a good shot at a new seat being created. The House must still vote on its version of the map, one draft that would radically reshape many districts. The final map must also be signed into law by DeSantis, or he could veto it. The Senate discussed the maps without mentioning DeSantis’ plan. Sen. Ray Rodrigues, who is leading the Senate’s redistricting efforts, said he only learned of the Governor’s plan this week, and senators are following the legislative process.

Ray Rodrigues is ready to give the Governor’s redistricting map the brush off.

DeSantis’ office disses Al Lawson district as ‘unconstitutional gerrymander’” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — The Governor’s Office labeled Florida’s 5th Congressional District an “unconstitutional gerrymander.” The harsh assessment comes as draft congressional maps moving through the Florida Legislature all include a similar configuration. Ryan Newman, General Counsel for DeSantis’ office, surprised lawmakers by submitting a draft congressional map on Sunday. Lawson condemned the Governor’s proposal Tuesday. “It is evident that DeSantis is trying to restrict minority representation, specifically African American voters,” the Congressman said. But Christina Pushaw, DeSantis’ press secretary, said CD 5 as it exists now should not stand. Asked if the Florida Supreme Court five years ago put an unconstitutional district into play, Pushaw asserted it had.

Senate debates legislative map that will shape its 2022 political environment” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — A draft map (S 8058) reached the Senate floor six days after the Senate Reapportionment Committee cleared it for full debate. While the Florida House must also sign off on the map, the chambers traditionally have allowed one another to craft their own district boundaries for legislative maps. The maps will ultimately become law without any involvement of the Governor’s Office. This map holds significant political consequences for chamber members, and under its current configuration, places several incumbent Senators seeking re-election into shared districts. Sens. Dennis Baxley and Keith Perry both live in the proposed Senate District 9. Neither to date has said how they will deal with that situation.

Shevrin Jones proposes change to the Senate’s draft congressional map” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics — Sen. Jones has offered changes to a proposed congressional map before the Florida Senate votes on it. The Democrat wants to see Miami Gardens, a community he represents in the state Senate, kept wholly within one congressional district. Under his draft map (S 8060), it would sit within Florida’s 24th Congressional District. The Senator took issue with a draft map advanced by the Senate Reapportionment Committee (S 8040) set for floor discussion Wednesday afternoon. That map splits Miami Gardens between CD 24 and Florida’s 25th Congressional District. “The latest maps are a severe disservice to the voters of Miami Gardens, a predominantly African American city, with important local challenges that deserve focused representation in Congress,” Jones said.

—TALLY 2 —

Critics fear legislative proposal to fix nursing home staffing shortages may affect care” via Verónica Zaragovia of WLRN — A survey from the Florida Health Care Association published in August found 92% of long-term care facilities in the state faced significant staffing challenges, with more than half saying they have had to reduce admissions as a result. One proposal, filed by Sen. Ben Albritton, would slash the hours licensed nurses have to spend with patients and allow time spent with therapists or activities directors to count toward the requirement. But some in the industry say there could be problems if licensed nurses provide less care. Amy Runkle, a CNA in Venice, says the idea of replacing licensed nursing assistants with other staff is dangerous. “You need to be certified; you need to be properly trained,” said Runkle, who has worked as a CNA for 31 years and is also a member of 1199 SEIU.

Some say Ben Albritton’s nursing home worker bill may do more harm than good.

Senate Health Policy Committee says yes to inpatient hospital care at home, hotel” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics — The Senate Health Policy Committee on Wednesday approved legislation (SB 1222) which amends existing state health care laws to allow hospitals, physicians and emergency medical transportation providers to partner together to provide nonemergency services to patients. Mayo Clinic Jacksonville Hospital has been offering inpatient services to its patients for more than a year under a pair of waivers granted by federal and state governments. But the waivers will expire, and Sen. Aaron Bean said his bill establishes the necessary framework for facilities interested in providing inpatient care outside of a hospital setting. Before passing the bill, the Senate Health Policy Committee agreed to tag on an amendment that reworded the proposal to prevent what Bean called a “scope creep.”

—“Senate Health Policy Committee passes three bills, defers action on three others” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics

Out with COVID-19, Darryl Rouson’s peers move peer counseling bill through committee” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics — Republican and Democratic senators said they are all behind an effort by Sen. Rouson to make it easier for former addicts to serve as counselors for those dealing with substance abuse problems. Rouson is sponsoring a bill designed to boost the number of “peer specialists” who can provide help to those being treated for drug and alcohol addiction as well as those who are struggling with mental illness. SB 282 cleared its second Senate committee Wednesday and has only one more stop before it reaches the full Senate. Rouson is a recovering addict and has pushed similar legislation in years past. That includes the 2021 Legislative Session when a similar bill sailed through the chamber, passing unanimously.

— MORE TALLY —

Charter school bill unanimously passes second House committee” via Tristan Wood of Florida Politics — A House bill putting guardrails on how charter schools are renewed unanimously passed its second committee stop Wednesday. The measure (HB 225), sponsored by Rep. Fred Hawkins, would require school boards to renew charter schools at least 90 days before the school year ends. Otherwise, the charter would renew automatically. The bill passed its second committee stop, the House Secondary Education and Career Development Subcommittee, with unanimous bipartisan support. Hawkins noted that public schools start working toward the next school year well in advance. If there is a problem with a charter school, districts should start addressing it with “plenty of time,” he argued.

Fred Hawkins’ charter school guardrails sails through committee.

Bill raising claims cap before state intervention to $1 million advances in the House” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics — A proposal to raise the cap on claims against local governments before the Legislature must intervene passed its first committee hurdle on Wednesday. The measure (HB 985), carried by Rep. Mike Beltran, would raise the value of claims from $200,000 to $1 million before sovereign immunity applies. The bill passed the House Civil Justice & Property Rights Subcommittee by a 16-1 vote. Sovereign immunity is a principle stating that the government, including a local government, cannot be sued without its consent. The principle dates back to British common law. Proponents hope it would reduce the number of times Floridians would have to come to lawmakers to plead their case to receive reparations for transgressions committed against them by the government.

State official gushes over influx of federal early childhood funding in House committee talk” via Kelly Hayes of Florida Politics — Matt Mears, the state’s Chancellor of Early Learning, was elated Wednesday afternoon when explaining that early childhood instructors received $166 million from Florida’s share of the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSA). Mears spoke to the House Early Learning and Elementary Education Subcommittee, discussing how the Florida Division of Early Learning distributed the $635 million in CRRSA funding, which the Legislature allocated. He was happy to share that 26% of the funding went to instructor disaster relief payments, which came in two $1,000 checks written directly to child care instructors. In 2021, 76,005 Florida instructors received emergency payments.

AFP-FL urges lawmakers to let the sun set on VISIT FLORIDA” via Drew Wilson of Florida Politics — VISIT FLORIDA will cease to exist on Oct. 1, 2023, under current law, but bills moving through the Legislature (SB 434/HB 489) would extend its authorization by five years to Oct. 1, 2028. Americans for Prosperity-Florida urges lawmakers to pump the brakes, deriding the tourism marketing agency as a form of corporate welfare. “AFP-FL works hard to protect Floridians’ hard-earned dollars by opposing public funding for unwarranted purposes,” AFP-FL State Director Skylar Zander said in a news release. “We should not allow our legislators to pick and choose what they want to see succeed in our economy — it should be our choice. After all, we know that the best way to actually promote economic growth is by ensuring that everyone is competing fairly.”

Bill to protect farmers’ tax benefits amid growing agritourism clears makes way in Senate, House” via Kelly Hayes of Florida Politics — The Senate Agriculture Committee unanimously approved legislation Wednesday morning that seeks to ensure the state’s growing agritourism industry doesn’t interfere with farmers’ preferential tax benefits. The Senate legislation (SB 1186), filed by Albritton, follows the House version of the bill, with both heading to their second committee. The House Environment, Agriculture and Flooding Subcommittee unanimously approved HB 717 on Tuesday. Filed by Rep. Josie Tomkow, the bill clarifies that farms can still be taxed at a lower rate even when parts of the land are being used for agritourism. The bill has garnered bipartisan support, clearing its first House and first Senate committee unanimously.

Huge bottles, kegs, and 5-liter boxes: bill mulls repeal of wine container size limits” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics — Imagine your party guests’ faces when you cart out a $5,625, six-liter, Methuselah bottle of Château d’Yquem wine or when you lug out a $15.99, five-liter box of Franzia Cabernet Sauvignon. Then imagine their faces when the cops arrive. Why does Florida law limit wine sales to containers no larger than 1 gallon, except for reusable kegs or shipping logistics between manufacturers and distributors? “It serves no good policy basis to criminalize the sale of wine based on container size,” argued Rep. Chip LaMarca as he pushed a bill (HB 6031) through the House Commerce Committee Wednesday. HB 6031 flew through the Commerce Committee Wednesday with no opposition or debate and little discussion.

The bigger, the better, says Chip LaMarca.

Bill requiring Florida governments to use American-made iron and steel clears first hurdle” via Jesse Scheckner of Florida Politics — A bill that would require state and local governmental organizations in Florida to use American-made iron and steel products cleared its first hurdle Wednesday after facing some scrutiny and one argument against it. The House Local Administration and Veterans Affairs Subcommittee unanimously OK’d a bill (HB 619) by Rep. Anthony Rodriguez. The measure would require taxpayer-funded public works to domestically source iron and steel products. If passed and signed by DeSantis, the rule would also cover various other governmental entities, including school districts, taxing districts, colleges and universities. Sen. Jim Boyd has filed similar legislation in the Senate.

K9s For Warriors says lawmakers deserve a treat — K9s For Warriors, the nation’s largest provider of trained Service Dogs to military veterans, on Wednesday praised the lawmakers working to help it secure funding for a new facility. The organization singled out Senate President Simpson and House Speaker Chris Sprowls, as well as Sen. Travis Hutson, Rep. Sam Garrison, Sen. Cord Byrd and Sen. Jennifer Bradley for backing a bill (HB 9049) that would fund the facility’s completion. “We are extremely grateful to our state leaders and representatives for their support in our mission to continue saving veteran lives by building the world’s largest rescue-to-Service Dog facility,” said Rory Diamond, CEO of K9s For Warriors. Diamond said that once completed, the facility will halve the wait time for veterans to receive a service dog.

— SKED —

— The Senate Rules Committee meets to consider SB 280, from Sen. Travis Hutson, to preempt new ordinances when challenges arise over the anticipated impacts to businesses, 9:30 a.m., Room 412 of the Knott Building.

— The Senate Appropriations Committee meets to consider SB 620, also from Hutson, to permit businesses to sue local governments if ordinances cause at least 15% losses of revenues or profits, 11:30 a.m., Room 412 of the Knott Building.

— The Florida Senate is scheduled for a floor session, 2:30 p.m., Senate chamber.

— House Education & Employment Committee meets, 9 a.m., Morris Hall of the House Office Building.

— House Judiciary Committee meets, 9 a.m., Room 404 of the House Office Building.

— House State Affairs Committee meets, 9 a.m., Room 212 of the Knott Building.

— House Finance & Facilities Subcommittee meets, 1 p.m., Morris Hall of the House Office Building.

— House Government Operations Subcommittee meets, 1 p.m., Room 404 of the House Office Building.

— House PreK-12 Appropriations Subcommittee meets, 1 p.m., Reed Hall of the House Office Building.

— House Regulatory Reform Subcommittee meets, 1 p.m., Room 212 of the Knott Building.

— STATEWIDE —

Florida DOT Secretary Kevin Thibault picked to run Orlando airport” via Kevin Spear of the Orlando Sentinel — DeSantis’ five appointees to Orlando’s aviation authority voted Wednesday to hire Thibault to run Orlando International Airport. “I stayed up late last night thinking and praying on this,” said Carson Good, chair of the Greater Orlando Aviation Authority and a Governor’s appointee. “I did not get any direction on who to pick, by the way.” Of the remaining two members of the authority, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings voted to hire the director of Seattle’s airport, and Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer said the Seattle airport director was his top pick, but he would vote along with the majority as a show of unanimity.

Kevin Thibault takes to the skies, or at least the airport.

Jimmy Patronis deploys anti-fraud strike team to Southwest Florida — CFO Patronis sent a squad of anti-fraud experts to Southwest Florida on Wednesday to ensure residents impacted by recent storms and tornadoes do not become fraud victims. “Following a natural disaster, scam artists work overtime to defraud individuals in their time of need, and that is why I have deployed my Disaster Fraud Action Strike Team to Southwest Florida to be on the lookout for bad actors trying to make a buck off the damage caused by the devastating tornadoes that took place over the weekend,” Patronis said. The DFAST deployment consists of eight insurance fraud and workers’ compensation investigators who work for the Department of Financial Services Division of Investigative and Forensic Services. They will be on the lookout for common post-storm scams such as contractors or restoration professionals who offer to waive insurance deductibles or fail to perform work after they’ve been paid.

Florida’s Environmental Regulation Commission hasn’t met in 5 years” via Scott Maxwell of the Orlando Sentinel — Florida is poised to spend $2.2 billion on the environment next year. This state and nation are already spending $23 billion cleaning up the Everglades. If you could solve problems simply by throwing money at them, we would be fine. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works. A much better way — cheaper and more effective — is to stop people from damaging our natural resources in the first place. And on that front, Florida is pretty pathetic. Environmental enforcement is a fraction of what it was two decades ago. Florida’s Environmental Regulation Commission hasn’t met a single time in the past five years.

‘That’s a problem’: Florida state agencies challenged with lack of job applicants, struggle to retain low-wage workers” via Kelly Hayes of Florida Politics — State agencies are struggling to attract job applicants amid employee vacancies. Sen. Jeff Brandes, who chairs the committee, called for the presentation to learn about the current employment challenges faced by state agencies. Speakers from various public sectors made one thing clear: state agencies are struggling to attract and keep employees. “Not only are we seeing elevated turnover, we aren’t seeing the same degree of interest in people applying for these positions,” said Heather DiGiacomo, chief of staff at the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. Over the past three years, the state has seen a 34.7% decline in the number of applicants to state positions. That’s despite a three-year, 7.2% increase in job advertisements.

Florida has a unique potion for executing prisoners. It wants to keep the details secret” via Ben Conarck and Ana Ceballos of the Miami Herald — Florida’s prison officials are asking legislators to enact more layers of secrecy around the state’s method of executing Death Row inmates, floating a bill that would make confidential any records that “could reasonably lead to the identification of any person or entity participating in an execution.” The measures would allow the Florida Department of Corrections to obscure the supply chain behind the unique cocktail of drugs used in its lethal injections. The department says doing so would prevent social activists from pressuring drug manufacturers into blacklisting the state from purchasing their products, but death penalty opponents say that it’s the manufacturers themselves that have sought to prevent their drugs from being used to kill people.

Consulate nursing homes are changing names. Are they changing ownership?” via Hannah Critchfield of the Tampa Bay Times — The largest nursing home chain in Florida is rebranding. On its website, Consulate Health Care Services no longer lists any long-term care facilities in the state. In the wake of a bankruptcy filing and a slew of bad press over the last few years, the privately-held chain, the sixth-largest nursing home company in the nation, has quietly divided its Florida facilities into three separate companies. All three appear to be still affiliated with Consulate. Many of Consulate’s Florida nursing homes have begun to change their individual names as well, erasing any affiliation with the chain. Such reorganization leaves consumers in the dark, critics say.

Consulate is changing names, but is that all?

Florida Power & Light class action opens door to subrogation, future storm claims” via William Rabb of Insurance Journal — A Miami judge’s certification of a lawsuit against Florida’s largest utility company as a $10 billion class action, with damage claims from more than 4 million people who lost power in Hurricane Irma, could have significant repercussions for self-insurers and insurance companies in the years ahead. Miami-Dade Circuit Judge David Miller issued the order last month, noting that the plaintiffs had shown that the case meets all requirements for a class action. The plaintiffs allege that Florida Power & Light was negligent and breached its contract with customers by failing to fully prepare for the storm or to “harden the system” despite collecting a surcharge for that purpose.

— CORONA FLORIDA —

Joe Biden says nation weary from COVID-19, but U.S. in a better place” via Zeke Miller and Josh Boak of The Associated Press — Biden acknowledged Wednesday that the pandemic has left Americans exhausted and demoralized but insisted at a news conference marking his first year in office that he has “outperformed” expectations in dealing with it. He said he would likely have to settle for “big chunks” of his signature economic package to break an impasse in Congress and further attack inflation and the pandemic. Biden said he believes important parts of his agenda will be passed before the 2022 midterm elections and voters will back Democrats if they are fully informed, an assignment he said he will pursue by traveling the country.

COVID-19 will be a long, dark winter, but Joe Biden says it will turn out in the end. Image via AP.

CDC data shows significant drop in new COVID-19 cases in Florida” via Brenda Argueta of Click Orlando — The CDC released several days of data after the holiday weekend that shows Florida may be turning the corner when it comes to the omicron wave. New data released Tuesday from the CDC shows there has been a large decline in new infections, and the state’s seven-day average of new cases has dropped nearly 25% in less than a week. The seven-day average of cases on Jan. 11, when the state recorded its fourth-highest set of numbers since the pandemic began, was 65,759. In the latest data reported one week later, the seven-day average was 49,690, a drop of 24.43%. Hospitalizations dropped by more than 300 over the weekend, though about half these hospitalizations are people with COVID-19 who are being treated for something else.

COVID-19 update: Florida reports 43,179 new cases, steady hospitalizations as omicron surge continues to ease” via David Schutz of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — Florida’s omicron surge continued to ease as the state’s seven-day average for new cases declined for the eighth consecutive day, and the number of patients in the hospital with COVID-19 remained stable, federal data shows. The state reported 43,179 new cases on Wednesday, an increase Tuesday. But the seven-day average fell to 45,456 — its lowest level since Dec. 30, according to data from the CDC. There were 11,839 patients with the virus in Florida hospitals on Tuesday and 1,613 adult COVID-19 patients in intensive care, data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shows. On Wednesday, the state added three deaths to its total count, bringing the seven-day rolling average to 91.

Orange County Mayor: ‘It is my fervent hope that Dr. Paul Pino returns to work … soon.’” via Stephen Hudak of the Orlando Sentinel — Demings, isolated at home because of a COVID-19 infection, offered his support Wednesday for Dr. Pino, who was placed on administrative leave from his post as the state’s chief health officer in the county. “Dr. Raul Pino has been our trusted partner and friend throughout the pandemic,” the Mayor said in a statement emailed from his communications team. Pino faces a state investigation related to a staff-wide email he sent on Jan. 4. The email revealed that fewer than 14% of the 568 employees in the County Health Department had been fully vaccinated with a complete series and booster shot.

— CORONA LOCAL —

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings tests positive for COVID -19, Val Demings negative” via Stephen Hudak of the Orlando Sentinel — Orange County Mayor Demings, who has led the county’s push for vaccination, testing and safety protocols, has tested positive for COVID-19, a spokesperson announced Wednesday in an email. The news release said the Mayor will be working from home this week. Congresswoman Demings, the Mayor’s spouse, said by email that she is “Negative and grateful. Will continue to test on a regular basis.” She added, “As always, we would also encourage all Floridians to sign up for the free tests now available through the USPS at https://special.usps.com/testkits, and to get vaccinated.” The Mayor is fully vaccinated and boosted and is experiencing mild symptoms, spokesperson Despina McLaughlin said. He received confirmation of a positive test Tuesday evening.

Jerry and Val Demings share everything but COVID-19.

Duval Schools reports more COVID-19 cases in first nine days of third quarter than the first two months of school combined” via Emily Bloch of The Florida Times-Union — In the nine days Duval Schools students have been back in school, the district has reported more cases of COVID-19 than it did in the first two months of the 2021-22 school year combined. Tuesday evening, the district reported 529 new cases, an all-time high for new cases reported within 24 hours. It’s worth noting that a bump in reported cases after a holiday break is to be expected. Still, an increase in new cases this high hasn’t occurred all school year. In fact, data shows that so far this month, the district has reported more COVID-19 cases than it did between all of September through December combined.

School arts performance postponed by record-high COVID-19 positivity rate in Manatee County, athletics unaffected” via Allyson Henning of WFLA — The highly-contagious omicron variant of coronavirus is impacting the school system in Manatee County. The district is implementing additional proactive mitigation measures to slow the spread. Before students were dismissed for winter break, the county’s positivity rate was 6.9%. Performing arts students at Parrish Community High School found out their much-anticipated winter performance would not take place. It was scheduled for less than 12 hours later and has not yet been rescheduled. When the Parrish Community High School performance was supposed to be taking place Tuesday evening, the school’s basketball and soccer teams were playing games as scheduled. Students felt it wasn’t fair.

— 2022 —

Election supervisors cite fraudulent signatures on Las Vegas Sands’ casino petitions” via Lawrence Mower and Mary Ellen Klas of The Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald — Florida could be in the midst of one of the largest cases of election-related fraud in recent history. Across the state, elections supervisors say they have been sent thousands of fraudulent petition forms supporting a constitutional amendment to expand casino gaming in the state. Although the forms are supposed to reflect real Floridians voicing support for a change to the state’s Constitution, many include the names of dead people or the forged signatures of real voters.

Attorney Kevin Hayslett joins Republican race for Florida’s 13th District” via Romy Ellenbogen of the Tampa Bay Times — Hayslett, a Clearwater attorney and former prosecutor, announced his plan on Wednesday to run for Florida’s 13th Congressional District. Hayslett, a Republican, said he’s already been endorsed by Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri and former Pinellas County Sheriff Jim Coats. Hayslett is positioning himself as a “law and order” candidate who is a Trump Republican and political outsider. “I care about our community, and I have deep roots here, but like many others, I’m concerned with how Washington politicians are trying to dictate how we live our lives,” Hayslett said in his announcement.

Kevin Hayslett is the latest Donald Trump supporter to enter the race for CD 13.

— CORONA NATION —

Omicron is in retreat” via David Leonhardt of The New York Times — Since early last week, new cases in Connecticut, Maryland, New Jersey and New York have fallen by more than 30%. They’re down by more than 10% in Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. In California, cases may have peaked. For now, the available evidence suggests that omicron is less threatening to a vaccinated person than ordinary flu. The final major piece of encouraging news involves booster shots: They are highly effective at preventing severe illness from omicron.

Omicron is so last week. Image via AP.

Choose your news …America’s second pandemic winter: More virus, less death” via Philip Bump of The Washington Post — Two critically important things changed with the coronavirus pandemic between one year ago and now. The first was that vaccines became widely available, and most American adults availed themselves of the protections the vaccines offered. The second is that the most common variant of the virus to spread in the United States in the past month was omicron, which is far more contagious but, the data suggest, also less dangerous. What has emerged is a different sort of pandemic, one in which far more people are getting infected but, so far, fewer are dying. Yet there’s a caveat: There have been nearly as many total hospitalizations in the past month as a year ago, largely a function of multiplying the reduced hospitalization rate times a far larger number of infected people. Despite the common description of the omicron variant as “mild,” the sheer scale of infections has pushed the number of hospitalizations higher.

Or …U.S. faces wave of omicron deaths in coming weeks, models say” via Carla K. Johnson of The Associated Press — The fast-moving omicron variant may cause less severe disease on average, but COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. are climbing, and modelers forecast 50,000 to 300,000 more Americans could die by the time the wave subsides in mid-March. The seven-day rolling average for daily new COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. has been trending upward since mid-November, reaching nearly 1,700 on Jan. 17, still below the peak of 3,300 in January 2021. COVID-19 deaths among nursing home residents started rising slightly two weeks ago, although still at a rate 10 times less than last year before most residents were vaccinated. If the higher end of projections comes to pass, that would push total U.S. deaths from COVID-19 over 1 million by early spring.

— CORONA ECONOMICS —

Florida man gets five years for COVID-19 relief, tax fraud” via The Associated Press — A Florida man convicted of fraudulently collecting more than $1.3 million in COVID-19 relief funds has been sentenced to five years in prison. Johnson Eustache was sentenced Tuesday in Orlando federal court. He pleaded guilty in August to wire fraud and aiding and assisting in the preparation of false tax returns. He must also forfeit approximately $700,000 seized from several bank accounts, as well as real properties in Palm Bay and Poinciana. Eustache submitted 13 different fraudulent Economic Injury Disaster Loan and Paycheck Protection Program applications to the Small Business Administration and other lenders from March 2020 to April 2021. In total, he sought more than $2.1 million in pandemic-related emergency benefits. Prosecutors said that Eustache included false statements in the applications regarding criminal history, the number of employees, and total payroll.

— MORE CORONA —

Study: Prior infection, vaccines provide best protection from COVID-19” via Mike Stobbe of The Associated Press — A new study in two states that compares coronavirus protection from prior infection and vaccination concludes getting the shots is still the safest way to prevent COVID-19. The study examined infections in New York and California last summer and fall and found people who were both vaccinated and had survived a prior bout of COVID-19 had the most protection. But unvaccinated people with a past infection were a close second. By fall, that group had a lower case rate than vaccinated people who had no past infection. The CDC, which released the study Wednesday, noted several caveats to the research. And some outside experts were cautious of the findings and wary of how they might be interpreted.

Just get the shot: Vaccination offers the best protection, a new study shows. Image via AP.

AI tool is built to detect which COVID-19 patients will recover from the disease based of blood protein levels” via Mansur Shaheen of Daily Mail — Researchers may have developed a new tool that uses machine learning to better predict health outcomes for hospitalized COVID-19 patients, and help physicians make more informed treatment decisions. A German research team developed an artificial intelligence tool to estimate how well an infected person will fare based on a blood sample. The levels of 14 proteins found in a person’s blood can indicate whether a person who suffers a severe enough hospitalization will survive or die from the virus, and the tool developed by researchers can accurately assess their risk. In times of crisis, where resources are especially scarce, the device can help determine what patients require the most intensive care to survive, and who is more fit to fight off the virus themselves.

When being unvaccinated means being locked out of public life” via Chico Harlan and Stefano Pitrelli of The Washington Post — At this complicated stage of the pandemic, the lives of unvaccinated people are in major flux, at the mercy of decisions made everywhere from courts to workplaces. But their lives are changing most dramatically in a handful of countries in Western Europe, including Italy, where governments are systematically reducing their liberties while beginning to return the rest of society to a state of normalcy. And while regular testing, until recently, was permitted as an alternative to vaccination, even that option has now been largely removed as countries harden their mandates. The choice is to get inoculated or face exclusion.

— PRESIDENTIAL —

5 takeaways from Biden’s news conference” via Aaron Blake of The Washington Post — Biden reinforced Wednesday that he has largely given up on his high-minded but far-fetched vision for bipartisanship on his watch. He instead cast his Republican opponents as principle-free, power-hungry legislators. At another point, Biden seemed to admit again that he misread the situation, pointing to the many sitting Republican senators who once voted to reauthorize the Voting Rights Act. Among the Biden comments that will likely be chewed over extensively was one suggesting that a smaller incursion by Russia into Ukraine might not merit the same response. “I think what you’re going to see is that Russia will be held accountable if it invades, and it depends on what it does,” Biden said. Biden seemed to lay blame on local authorities for not better using money from the pandemic relief bill to address ongoing problems.

Joe Biden drops the bipartisan charade. Image via AP.

Biden asks, ‘What are Republicans for?’ Republicans have already chosen not to answer.” via Philip Bump of The Washington Post — During a news conference held one day shy of his anniversary in office, Biden was asked whether he had made bigger promises to the electorate than he was able to fulfill. Biden insisted that his administration had made “enormous progress” on his agenda, denying that he’d overpromised on the campaign trail and during his early months in office. But then he qualified that: Perhaps he did overpromise on one front. In recent years, in particular, the Republican Party leadership has specifically declined to offer a detailed, proactive policy agenda. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has been direct about his lack of interest in outlining a policy platform.

Biden leaves Democrats hanging as midterms burst into full swing” via Edward-Isaac Dovere of CNN — Biden spotted Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney on the White House campus last June and called out to the House Democratic campaign chair loudly enough for several others to hear: “I really want to talk to you about the races!” he shouted. A week later, at the cherry festival in Traverse City, Michigan, Biden leaned into Sen. Gary Peters, who’s in charge of Democratic Senate campaigns, with the same promise. He’s always cared most about Senate races, Biden told the Michigan Democrat, and he wanted to have a meeting, an hour at least, to talk about helping his party hold the chamber in 2022. Seven months later, there are still no meetings on the books. Democratic politicians, campaign officials, and operatives say the White House political operation is heading into the midterms unprepared and unresponsive even to basic requests for help or information.

The long slide: Inside Biden’s declining popularity as he struggles with multiple crises” via Ashley Parker, Tyler Pager and Sean Sullivan of The Washington Post — Biden presented himself as an antidote to his predecessor, offering the promise of what his own campaign ads called “strong, steady, stable leadership” after four years of bedlam under Trump. But the tumult surrounding the administration’s withdrawal from Afghanistan offered an early glimpse of the cascade of crises that have badly eroded Biden’s image of restoring calm. The administration has also repeatedly underestimated the magnitude of the nation’s challenges, including failing to anticipate the delta and omicron coronavirus variants, and has struggled to unite the liberal base and the more moderate wing of the Democratic Party. By early September, more Americans disapproved than approved of how Biden was handling his job for the first time in his presidency.

Biden administration plans to spend more than $1 billion on Everglades restoration” via Bryan Lowry and Alex Harris of the Miami Herald — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to spend $1.1 billion on restoring and preserving South Florida’s Everglades during the current fiscal year, the White House announced Wednesday. According to the White House, the money comes through the infrastructure law Biden signed into law in November and represents the single largest investment in the Everglades in history. Florida’s congressional delegation split along party lines last year on the more than $1 trillion infrastructure package, with only the state’s Democrats voting in favor of it. The funds for the Everglades restoration aim to increase the ecosystem’s resilience against climate change by storing surface water runoff and minimizing seepage losses during dry periods, according to the White House.

Biden uses infrastructure bill to fulfill ask from hedge fund billionaire donor’s foundation” via Collin Anderson of The Washington Free Beacon — Biden used his $1 trillion infrastructure bill to boost an environmental foundation run by a hedge fund billionaire who contributed tens of thousands of dollars to the Democrat’s campaign. The White House announced $1.1 billion in funding from Biden’s infrastructure bill to preserve the Everglades. The move comes less than a year after billionaire investor and Everglades Foundation founder Paul Tudor Jones lobbied the Biden administration to commit $2.9 billion to the group’s cause. Just months before making the ask, Jones contributed $50,000 to the Biden Victory Fund and an additional $2,800 to Biden’s campaign. Biden’s Interior Department hired the foundation’s former CEO, Shann Estenoz, to serve as its policy head for national parks.

Paul Tudor Jones was instrumental in getting a significant federal boost to Everglades restoration.

Abortion pill fight could ensnare Biden’s FDA pick” via Alice Miranda Ollstein and Lauren Gardner of POLITICO — The FDA’s decision to ease access to abortion pills is fueling a new push by anti-abortion rights groups to derail Biden’s nominee to lead the agency, potentially endangering his confirmation. The effort has already swung some previously undecided Republican senators on Robert Califf’s nomination, like Tommy Tuberville and Roger Marshall. Both initially praised Califf during his confirmation hearing in the Senate health committee and appeared inclined to support him before voting against advancing the nomination in committee over “pro-life issues.” Marshall’s office confirmed that he met with some of the anti-abortion groups working to scuttle Califf’s confirmation in the lead-up to the Senate committee vote.

— D.C. MATTERS —

Senators are sparring over Democrats’ legislation, and their own rules.” via Carl Hulse and Jonathan Weisman of The New York Times — Democratic Senators pleaded for passage of far-reaching federal voting rights protections, painting state measures imposed by Republican legislatures curtailing access to the ballot box as a threat to democracy so dire that long-standing filibuster rules should be changed to enact them. Republicans were equally passionate in their denunciations of the Democratic effort. The drama of the day was not expected to change the results of the votes planned for Wednesday night. The Senate was set to vote to cut off debate on the legislation. Democratic leaders then plan to move to change the Senate’s filibuster rules without Republican consent.

Can Democrats get it together? A definite maybe. Image via AP.

Obamacare is proving popular in red states that didn’t expand Medicaid” via Tami Luhby of CNN — Millions of Americans have selected 2022 coverage on the Affordable Care Act exchanges, many for the first time. More than 13.8 million people have picked plans on the federal and state marketplaces, 2 million of them new to Obamacare for 2022. That’s an increase of 21% in sign-ups through the federal exchange, Healthcare.gov, as of Dec. 15, from the same time a year ago. However, even more notable is the popularity Obamacare is enjoying in many of the states that didn’t expand Medicaid. Florida has the highest number of people picking plans at nearly 2.6 million has seen interest soar by nearly 23%. And in Texas, which has the highest uninsured rate in the nation, 1.7 million residents have selected policies, up roughly 33% from last year. Open enrollment ends Saturday, though consumers can sign up during the year if they meet specific criteria, such as losing job-based coverage.

Mike Waltz joins bipartisan bill to strip Olympic Committee of tax-exempt status” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics — Rep. Waltz joined Rep. Jennifer Wexton in introducing a bill to strip the International Olympic Committee of tax-exempt status in the United States for violating its social welfare purpose. Waltz and Wexton, both longtime and leading critics of China’s human rights policies, all but conceded there is little chance of passing such a bill before the Olympics begin Feb. 4 in Beijing. Yet they suggested that their bill not only offers a prospect for influencing future Olympic decisions but could add immediate pressure to the Olympic organizers, NBC and American corporate sponsors to address human rights issues in China, including China’s ongoing genocidal oppression of the Uyghur people, during The Games’ broadcasts.

— CRISIS —

House Jan. 6 Committee subpoenas White nationalist figures” via Luke Broadwater and Alan Feuer of The New York Times — The House committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol issued two subpoenas for the leaders of a white nationalist movement that helped bring a crowd to Washington ahead of the riot. The committee issued subpoenas to Nicholas J. Fuentes and Patrick Casey, whom the panel described as leaders of the “America First” or “Groyper” movement and who were on the Capitol grounds last Jan. 6. Fuentes, a White nationalist, online provocateur and activist, has allied with Rep. Paul Gosar, a far-right Republican from Arizona who helped lead objections in Congress to the certification of President Joe Biden’s victory.

Crowdfunds top $50K for Tampa man charged in Jan. 6 riots. Where should it go?” via Dan Sullivan of the Tampa Bay Times — Ever since Jeremy Michael Brown’s arrest in September, he has fought hard to get out of jail. Federal prosecutors have fought just as hard to keep him locked up. Facing two separate federal cases, Brown lost a lengthy legal battle last month for release on bond. In recent weeks, a crowdfunding webpage bearing his picture, and a message he apparently wrote from the Pinellas County Jail, has tallied more than $57,000 in contributions, ostensibly intended to pay for his defense. The trouble is, Brown already has a court-appointed lawyer, whose services come courtesy of a federal law intended to help the accused who are financially unable to retain legal counsel. Prosecutors earlier this month filed an emergency request for a judge to prohibit Brown or his supporters from getting the funds.

Jeremy Michael Brown gets crowdfunded. Who gets the cash?

— EPILOGUE TRUMP —

Supreme Court rejects Trump, clears release of Jan. 6 papers” via Greg Stohr of Bloomberg — The U.S. Supreme Court cleared the way for some of Trump’s White House papers to be turned over to a congressional panel investigating the Jan. 6 Capitol attack. The order gives a major legal and political victory to the House select committee and its Democratic chair, Rep. Bennie Thompson. The National Archives can now turn over about 800 pages of material, including visitor and call logs, emails, draft speeches, and handwritten notes. Trump was seeking to override Biden’s decision to waive executive privilege over the documents, arguing that a former President’s rights can outweigh the incumbent’s views. But the high court said in an unsigned, one-paragraph order that Trump’s appeal didn’t offer the opportunity to decide that issue, given the reasoning of the appeals court that backed the committee in the case.

New York Attorney General alleges Trump’s business inflated property values, wealth statements” via Shayna Jacobs, Jonathan O’Connell and Josh Dawsey of The Washington Post — New York Attorney General Letitia James alleged Trump’s business inflated the value of his properties and misstated his personal worth in representations to lenders, insurance brokers and other players in his real estate empire. James, a Democrat leading a civil probe into Trump and his business, spelled out the claims in a court filing late Tuesday that was offered in support of her bid to see Trump and his adult children deposed under oath. James cited examples of Trump allegedly lending his signature to financial statements that estimated the worth of properties in the Trump Organization portfolio and the value of his own fortune.

Letitia James drops a hammer on the Trump Organization. Image via AP.

Bill Barr has a book deal” via Andrew Beaujon of the Washingtonian — Barr, the former U.S. Attorney General, will publish a memoir of his time in the George H.W. Bush and Trump administrations in March. It’s called “One Damn Thing After Another.” In a news release, the book, publisher William Morrow says, “takes readers behind the scenes during seminal moments of the Bush administration in the 1990s, from the LA riots to Pan Am 103 and Iran Contra. With the Trump administration, Barr faced an unrelenting barrage of issues, such as Russiagate, the opioid epidemic, Chinese espionage, big tech, the COVID-19 outbreak, civil unrest, the first impeachment, and the 2020 election fallout.”

Opera singer accepts insanity plea in Mar-a-Lago breach” via The Associated Press — The Connecticut opera singer who drew law enforcement fire when she sped through a checkpoint outside then-President Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in Florida has been found not guilty by reason of insanity. Florida prosecutors accepted Hannah Roemhild’s plea during a brief hearing Tuesday with the 32-year-old singer appearing by Zoom from her home state. Federal prosecutors accepted a similar plea deal in August. Her attorneys have said she has a history of mental illness. Roemhild only spoke to acknowledge her presence during the three-minute hearing in West Palm Beach. Under terms of the agreement, she must undergo psychiatric treatment and counseling and take medications, with monthly blood tests to confirm compliance.


— LOCAL NOTES —

Who’s responsible after four years of deaths on Brightline’s tracks” via Rob Wile and Doug Hanks of the Miami Herald — Brightline has caused more fatalities per mile traveled than any other major rail operator in the country, according to a Miami Herald analysis of Federal Railroad Administration data. Local, state and federal elected officials and regulators appear to be playing catch-up to the deadly rail dilemma and how to address it. A report from a consultant hired by state officials in 2018 recommended several key rail safety measures, yet the Florida Department of Transportation has not implemented any of them. And in 2020, state legislation that would have bolstered public safety at rail crossings stalled. Company officials contend the rail service has been plagued by suspected pedestrian suicides on the tracks and risk-taking motorists undaunted by the large mechanical guard arms blocking rail crossings.

Miami-Dade officially kills push for a private operator of the Rickenbacker Causeway” via Douglas Hanks of the Miami Herald — Declared unofficially dead weeks ago, the push for a private operator of the Rickenbacker Causeway was formally killed Wednesday by Miami-Dade Commissioners after leaders of Key Biscayne thwarted the effort. The ending of the bidding process for a developer leaves Miami-Dade looking for other options to repair Bear Cut Bridge. On Wednesday, Mayor Daniella Levine Cava said her administration would now work on two tracks: coming up with a plan for modernizing Bear Cut, and preparing a new request for proposals for upgrading the Rickenbacker. She said the plan may be far less ambitious than the $500 million upgrades sought by Miami-Dade in the solicitation that was just killed.

Daniella Levine Cava is taking a dual path to upgrade the Rickenbacker Causeway.

Sunrise police union demands chief step away from investigation of officer who grabbed another cop by the throat” via Eileen Kelley of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — The union for Sunrise police officers has demanded the city’s police chief recuse himself from the internal affairs investigation of a sergeant who was videotaped grabbing another officer by the throat. Chief Anthony Rosa called Sgt. Christopher Pullease’s behavior in the Nov. 19 incident “disgusting” and said the female subordinate acted appropriately when trying to intervene to de-escalate a confrontation at a crime scene. “We support the sergeant receiving a fair investigative process and await an unbiased and objective conclusion. However, we do not support Chief Rosa’s bias, prejudicial and unprofessional behavior,” wrote Steven Negron, the President of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 80, in a Jan. 17 letter to the Sunrise city manager and elected officials.

Judge orders home of ex-Jacksonville City Council member seized for fraud restitution” via Steve Patterson of The Florida Times-Union — A federal judge ordered former Jacksonville City Council member Reggie Brown’s home seized and sold, apparently days after he was released from a prison where he served time for fraud. U.S. District Judge Marcia Morales Howard granted a request from prosecutors to seize the home to help settle a $411,000 forfeiture order she imposed in October 2020, when Brown was sentenced with fellow ex-Council member Katrina Brown on dozens of fraud counts involving billing for a failed barbecue sauce factory. Prosecutors said no payments had been made when they asked last month for permission to take the House on Ray Road, off Cleveland Road near Edgewood Avenue in Northwest Jacksonville. Duval County Property Appraiser’s Office records estimate the home’s market value at $93,500.

Scott Carnahan refutes Georgia residency” via the Citrus County Chronicle — County Commissioner Carnahan and his spouse had filed and qualified for a homestead exemption in Georgia from March 19, 2021, until the pair requested the exemption be removed because they were moving to Florida, according to the records obtained from the Grady County, Georgia, Board of Tax Assessors Office, and verified through a spokeswoman with its office. Carnahan, whose term expires in November, announced Tuesday, Jan. 18, during the county commission meeting he will not seek re-election in 2022. He owns property in Georgia, but was not sure whether it is homesteaded because his wife took care of it. But he believes it is possible to have a homestead in another state.

— TOP OPINION —

Dear Trump, you’ve fallen to the mighty DeSantis. Well, at least in Florida” via Fabiola Santiago of the Miami Herald — You can tell the ex-President doesn’t get out of Mar-a-Lago and around Florida much because vaccine skeptics are a mean, scary bunch. So, for once, we, his detractors, applauded the former President for backing the COVID-19-vaccine booster rollout where in counts, in a conservative forum full of skeptics. Yet, the pandemic isn’t the true power struggle going on between the men, caught up in a drama reminiscent of Gloucester and his bastard son Edmund in Shakespeare’s “King Lear.” Theirs is a struggle for the ultimate power: the U.S. presidency. Both want to be contenders in 2024. As the world turns in Tallahassee and at Mar-a-Lago, my bet is on Trump losing the big battle. Florida can be very friendly, but often it’s lip service, a smoke screen.

— OPINIONS —

Why you can count on a Biden bounce” via Jack Shafer of POLITICO — We’ve already seen the weeks and weeks of coverage marking the end of his presidency, capstoned by his twin failures to navigate his multitrillion-dollar Build Back Better bill past Sens. Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema and get his voting bill passed. He may be cratering at just the right time. Biden can return to the smaller-gauge policies that made him popular in the first place. Second, last week he hit the lowest of all his lows in the Quinnipiac Poll, scoring only 33% in job approval. He’s fallen so far that everything has to be up from here. When you’ve fallen into the subbasement, as Biden truly has, then almost any vertical improvement looks like a comeback.

Florida’s redistricting process was moving along. Then DeSantis jumped in with a threat” via the Miami Herald editorial board — DeSantis’ surprise move this week to submit his own aggressively partisan proposal for redrawing congressional district lines in Florida, one that goes farther to protect GOP interests than any map the Legislature was considering, is an indication of just how far he’ll go to tighten his grip on the state’s Republicans and secure a possible White House bid. DeSantis’s map would dilute Black and Hispanic voting strength. DeSantis is threatening to veto it if he doesn’t think legislators have come up with maps that gain enough ground for Republicans. Redistricting experts and Democrats were quick to say that the Governor’s map would surely run afoul of both the federal Voting Rights Act and the Fair Districts amendment of the Florida Constitution. The proposal would definitely be challenged in court, they said.

With Legislature in Session, speak now, or forever hold your peace” via Omari Hardy for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel — Every year, it seems, another billionaire moves to our state, another Wall Street firm opens an office in Florida, another Fortune 500 company leaves its headquarters in New York, or California, and relocates to our state to do business here in the sunshine. But has this corporate feeding frenzy benefited the working-class people of our state? Hardly. As Florida’s rich have gotten richer, as our biggest corporations have booked massive profits, everyday Floridians — the essential workers and small-business owners who power our economy and create jobs in our communities — have been left to fend for themselves. The problem is that, in Tallahassee, your connections matter much more than the merits of your cause.

Florida education scandal reveals conflicts, money-grubbing for tax dollars” via Scott Maxwell of the Orlando Sentinel — Two top officials, including a former chair of the State Board of Education, tried to score a $1.8 million contract off the very division they were helping run, a blatant conflict of interest. Both resigned. And the Governor’s office now suggests that should be the end of the story. The scandal involves the tiny, troubled Jefferson County School District in the Panhandle, which state officials turned over to a private company in 2017. The state wanted to hire yet another company to help oversee the transfer for approximately $1.8 million. The money was apparently too much to resist for state Board of Education member Andy Tuck and Vice-Chancellor Melissa Ramsey. The conflict of interest was as wrong as it was obvious.

New bill to eliminate Florida’s prescribed burn program poses great harm to our state” via Alan Shelby and Jim Karels for the Tallahassee Democrat — A new bill from activists in the Florida Legislature would handicap Florida’s prescribed burning program, putting our state, our homes, and our people at great risk. Sen. Gary Farmer, a Fort Lauderdale Democrat, and Rep. Anna Eskamani, an Orlando Democrat, proposed SB 1102 and HB 6085 to strip protections from last year’s Right to Farm Act. Their proposal could weaken or eliminate one of the state’s most successful land management programs when it comes to protecting our people and environment.

—TODAY’S SUNRISE —

The 15-week abortion ban had its first hearing, giving Democrats their first crack at challenging it. Question No. 1: Why 15 weeks — and how is that constitutional?

Also on today’s Sunrise:

— Big Issues like abortion aren’t the only things being talked about this Session. We talk to a veteran political reporter about county delegations pushing their big issues … like sewers and road improvements.

— A Republican poll says there may be a reason behind the alleged rift between Trump and DeSantis. The Governor is polling almost as high as Trump among Republican primary voters.

— And we’ll let you hear what Stone has to say about the Governor in a new YouTube video.

To listen, click on the image below:

— ALOE —

Orlando to host U.S. final home World Cup qualifier in March” via The Associated Press — The United States will play its final home World Cup qualifier at Orlando, Florida, on March 27 against Panama. The U.S. Soccer Federation announced Wednesday that the match will be at Exploria Stadium, where the Americans beat Panama 4-0 on Oct. 6, 2017, also their next-to-last qualifier. Needing only a draw in their finale to qualify, the U.S. lost 2-1 four days later at Trinidad and Tobago, and the Americans’ streak of seven straight World Cup appearances was stopped. The U.S. is 4-0 at Exploria, which has a capacity of 25,500 and opened in 2014. This game against Panama is between qualifiers on March 24 at Mexico and March 30 at Costa Rica, where the Americans have nine losses and one draw in qualifying.

More restaurants reopening at Disney World” via Dewayne Bevil of the Orlando Sentinel — Three more restaurants are scheduled to reopen soon at Walt Disney World. The trio, located inside or near company resorts, have been shuttered since the pandemic took hold in March 2020. Flying Fish at Disney’s BoardWalk reopens Jan. 27, Turf Club Bar and Grill at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort reopens Feb. 3 and Jiko — The Cooking Place at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge reopens Feb. 17. Reservations can be made at these locations as of Jan. 20. Menus are available at disneyworld.com.

Disney’s Flying Fish is among the venues making a post-pandemic return.

How ‘Encanto’ and its vibrant soundtrack became a viral phenomenon” via Bethonie Butler of The Washington Post — The animated film, about a Colombian family with magical gifts and an enchanted fortress that has protected them for generations, arrived in theaters in November to warm reviews. But the movie and its soundtrack, featuring original songs by Lin-Manuel Miranda and a score by Germaine Franco, have gotten more popular since “Encanto” landed on Disney+ last month. In total, four songs from the film are on the Hot 100, nestled between smashes from Adele, Lil Nas X, Taylor Swift, and The Weeknd. Its success, boosted by the film’s streaming debut and scores of “Encanto”-themed TikTok videos, has earned comparisons to “Frozen.”

The case for keeping up your Christmas tree until March” via Charlie Warzel of The Atlantic — Right now, there is a hole in my living room. It was not there last week. We’ve tried to cover it up, but nothing seems to work. I am, of course, talking about my Christmas tree (RIP). Two weeks ago, my street was a Griswoldian wonderland with twinkling lights silhouetting the eaves of my neighbors’ houses and robust-looking conifers standing proudly in their windows. The decision to take down our holiday decorations after New Year’s is an arbitrary act of seasonal austerity. Normalize prolonged festivity! I’m not suggesting that we need to leave our trees up all year. Take your tree down when you’re ready. Or don’t! Apologize for nothing.

— HAPPY BIRTHDAY —

Best wishes to the incredible Marva Johnson, our dear friend Jen Lux, as well as Jim Horne, Michael Johnston, now with Shumaker Advisors, Christine Knepper, Chris O’Donnell of the Tampa Bay Times, and Rick Oppenheim.

___

Sunburn is authored and assembled by Peter Schorsch, Phil Ammann, Daniel Dean, Renzo Downey, Jacob Ogles, and Drew Wilson.


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How to stay compliant with your pay-as-you-go program https://expo-monet.com/how-to-stay-compliant-with-your-pay-as-you-go-program/ Thu, 03 Feb 2022 05:27:23 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/how-to-stay-compliant-with-your-pay-as-you-go-program/ It’s a market for job seekers. Unemployment is at its lowest level since the start of the pandemic and workers are not showing great urgency to fill vacancies. Employers need an edge. Here is pay on demand. Employees no longer have to wait two weeks or a month to get paid. They can access their […]]]>

It’s a market for job seekers. Unemployment is at its lowest level since the start of the pandemic and workers are not showing great urgency to fill vacancies. Employers need an edge.

Here is pay on demand. Employees no longer have to wait two weeks or a month to get paid. They can access their money as soon as they earn it.

Companies wishing to offer this benefit should be aware of federal and state laws applicable to payday loan and payday advance programs, including the limitations and durability of the advisory opinion provided by the Consumer Finance Protection Bureau (CFPB) . These rules and guidelines deal with fees, wage recovery and remedies, required disclosures, etc. Knowing them is vital.

Learn more: How pay-as-you-go improves employee well-being

Why pay-as-you-go is important

Workers have been under incredible stress over the past 18 months as the pandemic has turned lives upside down. Almost everyone was affected directly or indirectly. Pay-as-you-go is one way to ease the financial stress of the economic turmoil caused by the pandemic.

According to a survey conducted by Bank of America earlier this year, 56% of employees said they were worried about money, 53% said stress interfered with their ability to work, and more than 80% said financial benefits were essential to their financial security.

People want payment on demand

A recent study of more than 1,000 workers by HR software company Ceridian found that people at all income levels want to get paid immediately.

More than three-quarters of respondents said they would be more loyal to an employer if they offered free and immediate access to their earnings. Additionally, 81% said they would be more likely to work for a company that provided free access to earned income than an employer that did not.

Due to the growing demand for the service, a host of companies are offering some type of earned wage access. As service and costs increase, the likelihood of increased regulation, licensing and oversight will also increase. On October 12, 2021, a coalition of 96 consumer, labor, civil rights, legal, religious, community and financial and academic organizations wrote a letter to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) urging it to revoke or revise significantly two measures taken at the end of 2020 regarding Earned Wage Access (EWA) products. The group believed that the CFPB’s advisory opinion declaring that certain EWA programs were not “credited” under the Truth in Lending Act and subject to Regulation Z threatened to create loopholes in federal credit and fair loans. They also believed it could be misused to promote fintech exemptions in state payday loan law.

Learn more: Pay-as-you-go: An increasingly popular employee wellness tool

State-level regulations

If not carefully managed, access to earned wages can become another form of payday lending. California was the first state to address industry regulation before the bill blocked in the legislature end of 2020.

New Jersey, New York, South Carolina, Georgia, Utah, Nevada, and North Carolina have also attempted to regulate EWAs. Utah’s legislation also stalled in the legislature. The American Payroll Association’s Government Relations Task Force Subcommittee on State and Local Matters Supports Nevada and South Carolina Bills That Would Allow Employers to Offer Employee Workplace Programs access to earned wages (EWA). Both bills require licenses and disclosures.

The New Jersey State Assembly focused on employer-sponsored programs used solely as employee benefits. Its senate has yet to take up the measure, but an accompanying bill is pending. Other states have adopted approaches like New Jersey’s, and it can be expected that more states will adopt similar legislation as the popularity of EWAs continues to grow.

Federal regulations

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau first looked into the matter in December 2020 when it issued a newsletter provide an advisory opinion on whether EWAs are credit extensions under The Truth in Lending Act and its Regulations Z.

According to American Bar Associationrule Z applies when:

  • Credit is offered or extended to consumers
  • The offer or granting of credit is carried out regularly
  • The credit is subject to finance charges or is payable by written agreement in more than four installments
  • Credit is primarily for personal, family or household purposes

To not be considered a Reg Z loan, the EWA must meet the following requirements:

  • Be employer-based
  • Cannot exceed the amount of wages earned but not paid
  • Salaries must be free, although the CFPB has indicated that a “nominal processing fee” is authorized without specifying
  • Payroll deduction is the only way to recover anticipated wages
  • If a payroll deduction fails, the company has no legal recourse against an employee
  • Users must receive clear information
  • No credit checks are allowed

What to look for in a compliant supplier

It doesn’t matter if you are an HR technology platform or an employer; there are important considerations to make before implementing a pay-as-you-go program. You need to determine if:

  • Provider charges interest, fees, or other finance charges for earned payday advance or to access funds
  • The activity is subject to state and federal regulation and supervision

Consult with your legal team to confirm that the pay-as-you-go provider is following all of the above to ensure long-term compliance.

Pay-as-you-go is quickly becoming the “must have” benefit. The only way to ensure that this benefits you and your employees is to carefully vet the supplier to ensure they comply with all relevant regulations. Knowing what to look for will help you stay on the safe side of the rules.

Do you have a pay-as-you-go program in place? What obstacles did you encounter during its implementation? Let us know on Facebook, Twitterand LinkedIn.

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New Jersey Business Loans: JSV Capital vs. Traditional Lenders https://expo-monet.com/new-jersey-business-loans-jsv-capital-vs-traditional-lenders/ Thu, 03 Feb 2022 05:27:23 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/new-jersey-business-loans-jsv-capital-vs-traditional-lenders/ When you’re a small business owner, it’s in your best interest to compare business loans before settling on just one. There are many forms of financing available and some will suit your business better. All loans are different, so be sure to consider what JSV Capital can offer compared to more traditional lenders before deciding […]]]>

When you’re a small business owner, it’s in your best interest to compare business loans before settling on just one. There are many forms of financing available and some will suit your business better. All loans are different, so be sure to consider what JSV Capital can offer compared to more traditional lenders before deciding which route you should take.

How to start

If you want to get a traditional loan, you need to start building your business reputation before you even need the money. First, you need to make sure your personal and business credit ratings are as high as possible. Many companies struggle with this first part because they do not have a working capital loan in place. You must obtain a business credit card for your business before opening and make payments in a timely manner.

This credit card will usually need to be acquired from the lender you hope to work with in the future. Establishing a working relationship with a lender is essential, as a solid foundation of trust is required to obtain financing. If a lender has no prior knowledge of your business, you’re going to face an uphill battle to get financing.

picture by Pickawood

How JSV Capital is different

It takes a lot of time and concerted effort to get working capital loans for small businesses other lenders. With JSV Capital, you don’t have to worry about establishing a prior employment relationship. The application process is fast and you will know whether or not you have been approved within 24 hours. With other lenders, you may have to wait weeks to learn that your application has been denied. We don’t leave you in the dark like that.

The application process

You must make sure to dot the i’s and cross the t’s when filling out the paperwork for a traditional loan. In addition to the lengthy application itself, there are many other documents you need to provide, including:

  • Personal Summary
  • tax returns
  • Copy of rental contract
  • Company certificates
  • Bank statements from up to a year ago
  • Franchise contracts
  • Ownership structure

You may need to provide many documents depending on the type of loan you are trying to acquire. If something is left out or something is incomplete, your business can be further hampered. It may take weeks before you hear that you need to submit something else. Therefore, it takes even longer for your loan to be approved or denied.

Before applying, make sure you are applying to the right lender by knowing the following.

  • Are there any hidden fees?
  • Always ask about prepayment penalties. As a small business owner, it helps if you can pay off your loan sooner. Ask if there are any penalties or discounts for early payment.
  • Know your personal and professional credit score before wasting your time with different lenders. Not all lenders will take bad credit. This will help you narrow down your search. If you find yourself with bad credit, you may want to research other lenders who can help you.

How JSV Capital Funding Compares

Our goal is never to confuse you when you apply. You can consult the application form, which is only one page. The only documents you will need to send are bank statements for the last three months.

alternative lenders new jersey

picture by Cyton Photography

Payment Plans

Small businesses need loans for a variety of reasons. No matter what it’s going to be used for, you need to be sure to pay it back in a timely manner. You can set up a payment plan with other providers, but one problem many business owners face is paying it back quickly.

The longer it takes to repay a loan, the higher the interest rate will have to be paid. Unfortunately, many banks and other traditional lenders require business owners to repay the loan between five and ten years. It may sound nice, but it can be difficult if you want to avoid monthly payments in the long run.

Many online lenders have a similar process, but even with them business owners have to repay over a period of six to 18 months. In fact, many traditional lenders take this practice one step further and impose a prepayment penalty. This means that if you try to pay off your loan too soon, you will have to pay fees on top of the loan and the interest rate.

Short term program

We understand that sometimes a business needs a quick injection of cash. This quick boost shouldn’t bother you for years to come, so you can choose a term from three to 36 months. We are committed to working when you need us.

This means that if you need more money to payroll and can pay us back in a few months, we are ready to work with you. However, if you have a long-term project on the horizon and will need a lot of funding in the near future, we will work with you there as well. It’s like your working capital line of credit that you can use as you see fit. The JSV Capital program is a true ready to use for your working capital solutions.

Collateral

Generally, there are two types of loans that most lenders offer. These are secure and unsecure. For a secured loan, the business must put up something of value. Therefore, if the person fails to meet the payment plan, the lender acquires the collateral. It should generally be a vehicle, equipment or building,

Unsecured loans do not require any collateral. As a result, the lender faces a much higher risk. As a result, many lenders tend to avoid unsecured loans when possible.

Unsecured loan of choice

Since secured loans are much safer for lenders, they are more common. For companies that do not have sufficient guarantees, it can be difficult to find financing. Fortunately, JSV Capital only deals with unsecured financing, which means that you will not have to provide any collateral when obtaining financing with us.

How to use your loan

Some traditional lenders will want to know, in detail, what your business loan will be used for. Some lenders are more lenient than others. Other lenders will have strict restrictions on what it can be used for. In many cases, your loan must be for sound business purposes as defined by the Small Business Administration. It can get quite objective, making it more difficult to get the funds you need.

alternative business loan nj

picture by Sharon McCutcheon

How to use a working capital loan

You can use your loan to develop and sustain your business. A few of the things our previous clients have used their loans for in the past include:

  • Cover payroll in the event of a cash shortfall
  • Buy equipment and supplies when funds run out
  • Use of funds as a bridging loan
  • Increase revenue through additional advertising

This list is just a small sample of what you can use your funding for. With other lenders, you need to read the agreement carefully to make sure you’re not spending the funding on something you’re not supposed to.

Build relationships with business owners

JSV Capital is dedicated to building real relationships with small business owners, and we want to help. You can start the application process today. As long as your business has been around for at least a year and earns a minimum of 10,000 monthly revenues, we should be able to provide you with the financing you are looking for.

Main photo by Towfiqu barbhuiya

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Museum Art Handing Market Valuation to Grow at a Healthy CAGR through 2026 https://expo-monet.com/museum-art-handing-market-valuation-to-grow-at-a-healthy-cagr-through-2026/ Tue, 01 Feb 2022 11:56:35 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/museum-art-handing-market-valuation-to-grow-at-a-healthy-cagr-through-2026/ the Market for the return of works of art from the museum The research report includes an in-depth analysis of this industry vertical with expert insights on previous and current business setup. It carefully studies the vital aspects influencing the expansion of the industry such as growth drivers, challenges, and opportunities. Further, it defines the […]]]>

the Market for the return of works of art from the museum The research report includes an in-depth analysis of this industry vertical with expert insights on previous and current business setup. It carefully studies the vital aspects influencing the expansion of the industry such as growth drivers, challenges, and opportunities. Further, it defines the size and share of the market and its segments to infer the major revenue-generating prospects.

According to industry experts, the museum art handover market is expected to witness substantial growth, registering a CAGR of XX% over the estimated period 2020-2025.

Request a sample copy of this report @ https://www.getnewsalert.com/request-sample/11876

Additionally, the document assesses the impact of COVID-19 on regional markets and provides a conclusive overview of the economic situation around the world. In addition, it highlights the uncertainties raised and the challenges facing businesses amid the pandemic, including supply chain and demand disruptions as well as the complexity of cost management. In this regard, the research literature helps to build strong contingency plans to ensure long-term business continuity and profitability.

Crucial Tips from the Museum Art Handing Market Report:

  • Impact of COVID-19 on the industry pay scale.
  • Expected market growth rate.
  • Dominant market trends.
  • Opportunities for growth.
  • Advantages and disadvantages of indirect and direct sales channels.
  • Top resellers, traders and distributors.

Museum Art Handing Market Segments Covered in the Report:

Regional bifurcation:

  • North America (United States, Canada and Mexico)
  • Europe (Germany, France, UK, Russia and Italy)
  • Asia-Pacific (China, Japan, Korea, India, Southeast Asia and Australia)
  • South America (Brazil, Argentina, Colombia)
  • Middle East and Africa (Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Nigeria and South Africa)
  • Analysis of each regional market at the national level.
  • Overall revenue and net profit amassed by each domain.
  • Market share held by each geography.
  • Estimated growth rate and revenue generated by each regional market during the forecast period.

Type of product : Transport, packaging, storage and other

  • Revenue, sales and market share of each product category.
  • Pricing model of each product segment.

Scope : Public museum, private museum and museum exhibition

Competitive Arena:

  • Agility
  • DHL
  • DB Schenker
  • Iron Mountain (Crozier)
  • Crown
  • MTAB
  • Freight systems
  • Etna
  • fine arts logistics
  • Workshop 4
  • Grace
  • Helu-Trans
  • USAArt
  • Yamato
  • Katolec
  • Mithals
  • Sinotrans
  • Deppon
  • Globaliner and Michelle

  • Services and products offered by industry leaders.
  • Manufacturing facilities of major players in various regions.
  • Main competitors of the main organizations and new competitors in the sector.
  • Review of pricing models, gross margins, overall sales, total revenue and market share of the companies mentioned.
  • SWOT assessment of listed companies.
  • Evaluation of well-known business strategies, market concentration rate and marketability rate.

The Museum Art Discount Market TOC contains the following points:

1 Presentation of the art delivery market in museums

2 Museum Art Handing Market Company Profiles

3 Market Competition, by Players

4 Market Size by Regions

5 North America Museums Revenue by Countries

6 Europe Art Museums Revenue by Countries

7 Asia-Pacific Museum Art Handing Revenue by Regions

8 South America Museums Revenue by Countries

9 Middle East & Africa Museum Art Distribution by Countries

10 Market Size Segments by Type

11 Global Museum Art Return Market Segment by Application

12 Global Museum Art Delivery Market Size Forecast (2021-2025)

13 Research findings and conclusion

Customization request on this report @ https://www.getnewsalert.com/request-for-customization/11876

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Sarah D. McDaniel, Wealth Management https://expo-monet.com/sarah-d-mcdaniel-wealth-management/ Thu, 27 Jan 2022 23:47:13 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/sarah-d-mcdaniel-wealth-management/ Sarah D. McDaniel never imagined she would have a career in the art world. Raised outside of Philadelphia, she grew up frequenting the area’s many museums and developed a special fondness for the Barnes Foundation, where she learned the names of artists and styles, and cemented her love of art. art with its encapsulated stories. […]]]>

Sarah D. McDaniel never imagined she would have a career in the art world. Raised outside of Philadelphia, she grew up frequenting the area’s many museums and developed a special fondness for the Barnes Foundation, where she learned the names of artists and styles, and cemented her love of art. art with its encapsulated stories.

But she always assumed that her interest in art would remain a hobby. As an undergraduate at Dartmouth College, McDaniel was on a pre-medical path with ambitions to become a doctor. This began to change when an academic advisor recommended that McDaniel enroll in an art history course to meet one of his general education requirements. “When the lights went out and the images appeared larger than life on the screen, the surge of excitement I felt in the Barnes came back to me,” McDaniel recalled. “I became an art history major, in addition to studying pre-med.”

It wasn’t until McDaniel was able to travel the world, see and study art through a Semester at Sea program that she decided to give up medicine as a career. Instead, after graduating, she went to work for Christie’s, first in New York and then in London. “It was like working in a museum whose collection came back twice a year,” says McDaniel. “I liked it.”

McDaniel’s time at Christie’s exposed her not just to art, but to the business of art – how to buy and sell it, why, and how to plan its acquisition. Her experience working in the auction house’s Trusts, Taxes, Estates and Valuations department would prove invaluable in her transition into finance and wealth management as she would learn how art management as an asset is essential for preserving collections and legacies or finding new homes for works. in future collections.

Eventually, McDaniel enrolled in the London Business School MBA program to study business and finance. This would eventually lead her to Morgan Stanley, where McDaniel works to help clients integrate art as an asset on their balance sheet and raise awareness of it potentially becoming an unforeseen future liability.

Over the course of his more than 30 year career, McDaniel has seen the art market change dramatically. On the one hand, she says, the profile of the collector has grown. “You see more collectors, with more diverse backgrounds and experiences. This has naturally transformed the economy of taste within the art market, as different collectors bring in new interests.

The ability to determine the value of a collection has also become more accessible, in part thanks to a range of new digital tools that have brought more efficiency and pricing transparency to an industry that once operated solely on handshake and silent transactions.

“I used to look up auction prices in old auction catalogs,” she says. “Now people can query prices in online art databases. This makes it easier to find the market value of a piece and start to think of art and collectibles as a assets, as well as a passional asset.

As the art market continues to evolve, so does the need for comprehensive financial planning and asset management for collectors, says McDaniel.

Unlike art advisors, who can help individual clients connect with galleries and identify individual pieces to build a collection, McDaniel and his colleagues at Morgan Stanley focus on the financial opportunities and challenges that can arise from owning an art collection. These may include the need for trusts, tax and estate planning, family governance, philanthropic planning, insurance and access to finance to help manage storage and maintenance costs.

Estate planning is one area where a long-term strategy can help art collectors deal with unexpected complications. For example, works that appeal to the collector may not appeal to the next generation, and heirs may not know how to maintain the art. Moreover, different works may not be enjoyed in the same way, leaving some heirs with a windfall and others feeling cheated.

For McDaniel, Morgan Stanley is an ideal place to help clients navigate such challenges, with the goal of balancing their passion for fundraising with their broader financial planning needs.

“We can discuss possible strategies for collectors and their collections to complement their portfolios, balance sheets, risk profiles and personal circumstances,” she says. “Being able to review these issues with the many specialist teams at Morgan Stanley is very rewarding. I learn something new and interesting every day about art, finance and their interconnectivity.

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Chicago Casino Offer Requires McCormick Place Management Verification: Editorial https://expo-monet.com/chicago-casino-offer-requires-mccormick-place-management-verification-editorial/ Mon, 24 Jan 2022 19:26:27 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/chicago-casino-offer-requires-mccormick-place-management-verification-editorial/ The MPEA has a habit of making bad bets. Years ago, he spent $43 million building “Mayor’s Road” to take conventioneers from hotels at the Illinois Center to McCormick Place. Then he spent hundreds of millions building two hotels and the Wintrust Arena next to McCormick Place, rendering the road obsolete. When the convention center […]]]>

The MPEA has a habit of making bad bets. Years ago, he spent $43 million building “Mayor’s Road” to take conventioneers from hotels at the Illinois Center to McCormick Place. Then he spent hundreds of millions building two hotels and the Wintrust Arena next to McCormick Place, rendering the road obsolete. When the convention center closed during the pandemic, all 2,000 hotel rooms were also empty.

Prior to the pandemic, the MPEA consistently ran operating deficits of around $100 million each year. To make up the difference, the entity taxes restaurants, hotels, taxis, rental cars and rideshares to the tune of about $150 million a year. But then comes the debt service of over $250 million, so overall it’s about $200 million missing every year. In a world of zooming and social distancing, the level of convention activity is likely permanently altered and usage will drop sharply. All of this results in a debt that special taxes cannot repay. Five years ago, the authority owed $4 billion in long-term debt. Five years later, the total has grown to $4.8 billion.

The casino’s opportunity comes as a result of these bad choices. These choices are made by a joint venture between the city and state, with the mayor and governor appointing an equal number of MPEA board members. And in the eyes of the rating agencies, the authority’s debt is ultimately a liability of the state.

Here are the four things responsible leaders owe the people of Illinois and Chicago before any deal is done.

First, the MPEA board must charge casino market rent and use the proceeds to pay down debt. To quote a famous Chicagoan, the property is golden. What company wouldn’t want to use such a framework, with all the parking and access? It is irreplicable. So let’s charge it.

Second, the State of Illinois should commission an independent study of the future of the convention center and its realistic prospects. It should appoint an independent ad hoc council and not leave it up to the authority to come up with another self-serving economic study. The independent commission should hire independent consultants to make a realistic economic assessment, including other potential uses of tax revenue currently directed to the convention center.

This study group should also decide on the fate of the authority and its strategic orientation. MPEA’s board has proven for decades that it intends to grow indefinitely, regardless of the economy. Who will hold them back?

And finally, the governor must take the lead in deciding the fate of the center. Any mayor would love to give away property and then cut revenue and taxes to fill a budget hole. We have seen this before. This is a state issue – indeed, rating agencies believe that the state is ultimately responsible for MPEA’s debts – and should be dealt with independently by the General Assembly and the Governor.

In the absence of these four imperatives, taxpayers should fear the deal that will be concocted.

The worst deal would be for the MPEA to build a casino and a hotel, rack up more debt, and then sign an amicable lease. The second worst deal would be for the developer to pay for the casino and hotel, and for the MPEA to lease the building for $1 like the Park District did for the Obama Center and tried to do for the Lucas Museum .

While the public sees gleaming renderings of a gorgeous casino resort, there might be some ugly dealings in a back room somewhere.

If history teaches us anything, it’s that we should beware.

Ed Bachrach and Austin Berg are co-authors of “The New Chicago Way: Lessons From Other Big Cities” (Southern Illinois University Press, 2019).

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Alkaloid Skopje: Interview of the CEO / Chairman of the Management Board of Alkaloid AD Skopje for the Serbian magazine “Magazin Biznis” https://expo-monet.com/alkaloid-skopje-interview-of-the-ceo-chairman-of-the-management-board-of-alkaloid-ad-skopje-for-the-serbian-magazine-magazin-biznis/ Thu, 23 Dec 2021 10:27:13 +0000 https://expo-monet.com/alkaloid-skopje-interview-of-the-ceo-chairman-of-the-management-board-of-alkaloid-ad-skopje-for-the-serbian-magazine-magazin-biznis/ The way of 15 at 2,500 employees In 1936, when it started operating as a basic morphine extraction plant, Alkaloid was the founder of a new branch of the industry with only fifteen employees. Continuous investment, commitment to growth and sustainability have made Alkaloid the sixth largest pharmaceutical company in South East Europe today, with […]]]>


The way of 15 at 2,500 employees

In 1936, when it started operating as a basic morphine extraction plant, Alkaloid was the founder of a new branch of the industry with only fifteen employees. Continuous investment, commitment to growth and sustainability have made Alkaloid the sixth largest pharmaceutical company in South East Europe today, with over 2,000 employees at its headquarters in Skopje and over of 500 abroad. We currently sell to over 40 countries around the world, with a marketing network of 20 offices in 14 countries outside of North Macedonia. Alkaloid has been involved in the production of drugs, cosmetics, chemicals, and herbal processing for 85 years. The success of the operation is mainly the result of the quality of our human resources and our products and of the Alkaloid corporate brand itself. It also tracks the quality of our individual brands built by generations before us.

Asked about the keystones of Alkaloid’s development, its CEO and Chairman of the Management Board, Zhivko Mukaetov said: “Over the past 15 years, we have invested more than 200 million euros in new technologies, the complete digitalization of process, doubling the number of offices outside Macedonia, and a production plant in Serbia. We have also opened a research and development institute and a quality control center. This has enabled us to increase our sales over the past 15 years from 53 million euros to over 205 million euros which we expect at the end of this year. ”

As Mukaetov recalls, 11 years ago, the Skopje-based Alkaloid company opened its production plant in Serbia: “In 2010, Serbia was the first country outside Macedonia where we established production and processing operations. wholesale. We employ 145 people in Serbia, which says a lot about the strategic importance of this market for us. Alkaloid’s production program in Serbia includes more than 160 pharmaceutical products. Our Becutan brand, which has helped raise generations across the region, is also present. The investment climate in Serbia is favorable and we cover the entire Serbian market outside our factory in Belgrade. In the long term, we also plan to use Serbia’s duty-free agreement with Euro-Asian Union consisting of Russia, Kazakhstan, Belarus, etc.

What are your most important export markets, where do you plan to expand and to what extent?

– Over 65% of our sales go to export, whereas two decades ago it was the other way around – 65% went to the domestic market. The countries of the region are our traditional export markets because our products are well known there. For our 85th anniversary, we organized an exhibition on the history of the company at the Skopje City Museum. While getting ready, we received Becutan soaps with a message from Bosnian consumers: “They have the same quality after so long. We will continue to be your loyal customers. ‘ The fun is enormous when a brand becomes part of people’s lives. Outside the region, we also export to European Union, Russia and CIS, North America and some Middle East countries. We have also added Canada, Italy, Austria, Spain, Portugal and Saudi Arabia to our list of new markets over the past two years. We intend to stay focused on the globalization of the Alkaloid brand.

How do you see the competition in the pharmaceutical industry in the region, and what is Alkaloid’s position in the regional market?

– Alkaloid made its plan to enter the global market in the mid-1990s, with the start of the largest investment cycle in the company’s history, and built a new factory for solid dosage forms and semi-synthetic cephalosporins. After lengthy negotiations with international financial institutions, Alkaloid management obtained a convertible loan from the EBRD and the IFC of around 17.4 million euros, without any state guarantee, only by applying strict corporate governance practices. But in today’s rapidly changing era, pharmaceutical industries must invest in new technology, R&D, innovation, facilities and people. Falling behind would affect competitiveness, and the battle for the markets is not easy. We are faced with strong local and regional players and major generics. It is therefore necessary to keep up with technological trends and regulations, while investing in people and facilities.

What were the most difficult challenges when working during a pandemic?

– We have learned many important lessons from the current health crisis and accelerated the development of new skills. We have encouraged creativity and innovation and developed strategies demanded by the new era and new markets. When the pandemic began, the disrupted supply chain seemed to be the biggest challenge. Unfortunately, a year and a half later, it’s even worse. Commodity prices have skyrocketed, while delivery times have lengthened. For example, the delivery time for aluminum foil is now eight months, down from three months before the pandemic. As the demand for certain raw materials is very high, suppliers demand new and more stringent conditions on a daily basis. Freight containers cost almost six times as much. Instead of $ 3,000, we’re now paying about $ 18,000 per container shipped to the United States, while the delivery time has doubled. But that doesn’t just happen to the pharmaceutical industry. Facing the harsh reality is inevitable. This requires redefining the processes, finding alternatives for communication with consumers and a sustainable adaptation to change.

What direction will Alkaloid take in its development? What will your development priorities be?

– While investing in business development, we will also continue to invest in the community in which we live and work, making this our top priority. Alkaloid and the Trajche Mukaetov Foundation donated over 1.2 million euros last year for various causes. Around € 300,000 went to the region, including Serbia. In the spirit of our motto – Health First, Alkaloid will remain committed to the positive values ​​of credibility, professional integrity, humanity and human solidarity. The year of our 85th anniversary has been full of challenges and uncertainties. Our imperative is to build a business of satisfied people who invest their full potential to achieve our common success.

Changing trends due to the pandemic

There is a misconception that pharmaceutical companies earn more, especially during a health crisis. Alkaloid’s sales growth in 2020/2021 was at its five-year average, while this year’s global economic trends indicate drug sales globally declined by 4%.

– There has been a growing demand for antibiotics during the pandemic, with some categories of drugs unrelated to COVID completely halted. We had to adapt our plans to market demands, and with all the logistical challenges we had to face, it was extremely difficult to take the right position. The past two years have been very stressful for the whole system. But we have met the big challenges with success. This crisis can serve as an exceptional lesson for all of us, said Zhivko Mukaetov.


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