Cuomo? Oh, There He Is

ALBANY — Tuesday was among the busiest days so far this year for lawmakers. Thousands of New Yorkers converged here to lobby them for relief from budget cuts. Meanwhile, both houses of the Legislature passed their own spending plans, and their leaders held their first budget negotiating session.

Yet amid the news conferences, floor debates and shouting protesters, one figure was absent: Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo.

Mr. Cuomo, who is in his 11th week as governor, has taken a liking to Albany. He has spent weekends at the Executive Mansion and has showed little interest in retreating back to New York City or elsewhere in the state, as was the habit of his recent predecessors. Which raised the question: Where in the world, or at least in New York State, was Mr. Cuomo? Continue reading “Cuomo? Oh, There He Is”


WELCOME TO KERALA.COM-! is the premier site of Pvt. Ltd, a global IT solutions company with its head office in Cochin and branch offices in Chennai, Bangalore and outside the country. With over twelve years of experience in the realms of software development, web-based solutions, web application and e-portal development, we have developed more than 150 web portals on different categories related to India and Kerala.

This includes individual websites for all 14 revenue districts of Kerala besides numerous websites on places of tourist importance., together with its large family of inter-linked destination micro-sites and category sub-portals, can be termed as a mini encyclopedia on Kerala – with its rich data base giving authentic information on a range of categories namely Kerala schools, Kerala health, Kerala hotels, Kerala personalities, Kerala events, Kerala govt, Kerala web directory, Kerala real estate etc. As the tagline suggests, it is a multi purpose resource pool of detailed information on all topics related to Kerala. constitutes a vast treasure house of information and can be used as a reference guide by students, travelers and researchers. The travel portal which is constantly updated with better features and format is a visitors delight, with quick search options offering assorted tour packages to exotic locales in gods own country at cost-effective rates. also solicits advertisements and banners from interested clients and customers wishing to enhance their business. It offers malayalies residing in and outside the state a unique platform to advertise their services worldwide.

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With credit to our team of well qualified and experienced staff whose technical skills and expertise have contributed to our growth, the company has diversified into numerous branches viz. Kerala Travels, Kerala RealEstate and Kerala Matrimonials all of which are presently following their own success stories in their respective fields.

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Tips on Setting up the Perfect Trade Show Booth

A trade show provides the perfect opportunity for a business to come in direct contact with customers. This sets the stage for a sales person- customer interaction wherein all doubts, questions and suggestions of the customer can be discussed freely. Since this is necessary to enhance business growth, it is critical to ensure that the visitors to the event are encouraged to come to your trade show booth. To do this it is important that your stall truly stands apart with some spectacular displays and an eye catching booth design. Today, thanks to trade show booth rentals, even a small business can have a show stopping trade show booth without spending a fortune.

Avoid Cluttering up Your Booth

Many businesses make the mistake of filling their trade show stall chock- a- block with product samples, leaflet/ brochure stands and displays. Result- there is practically no space for the visitor to move around inside and look at the various displayed items. While it is important for you to make optimum use of your stall space, the most important thing is to communicate with the visitor. Ensure that the stall has enough space inside to make moving inside comfortable. When you choose your trade show booth rentals ensure that you pick a design that will let you mount some of your displays, shelving etc on the walls so that you leave enough room for a walk through.

Focus on Your Event Theme

Another important point to remember is that you need to have a specific theme or objective for your trade show. It may be an overall business objective, for example, improve the market penetration of the company logo. Otherwise, it may be a more product specific one, for example, promote the latest range of air purifiers. When you choose your trade show booth rentals design, keep the primary objective of your event participation in mind. For example, for the first objective, you may want a trade show stall in the same colors as your logo. You may also want a giant replica of your logo atop the entrance way. For the second theme, you will need enough shelving inside the booth to display your new product, brochures and catalogues presenting its advantages. You may also need demo space within the booth to show potential customers how your air purifier works.

Add a Special Touch

Ensure that you add a special touch to your trade show booth rentals to make it truly stand out among the crowd. You can do this by opting for unique flooring, special lighting or a differently shaped entryway to your booth. This not just gives your booth a unique look but also piques the curiosity of visitors to the show. Result, they are encouraged to walk into your stall to see what you have to offer.

Customizing your stall so that you get the maximum attention is quite affordable when you choose trade show booth rentals from a customer friendly rental provider who has put in a good number of years in this market. Go for providers you have used before with good results or get recommendations from friends and business associates before you choose your trade show booth rental provider.

Adfab Exhibit Group offers trade show booth rental Toronto that gets you noticed. Visit for more information on modular displays.

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The Line Between Pet and Animal

In his latest column, the Times’s food-politics writer Mark Bittman uses the attempted criminal prosecution of the Brooklyn hamster-killing case as a springboard to examine the disconnect in this great land between the treatment of companion animals and the treatment of food animals. It’s a well-argued, thought-provoking essay (one that made us reflect anew, much as we love rabbits and could never eat one, on the timeless wisdom and sanity of the Pets-or-Meat lady in “Roger & Me”). And it has engendered a lively comment thread.  Read and join the conversation on the Opinionator. »

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Morning Buzz | Relief Efforts Build Slowly

Cloudy and damp with temperatures in the 50s Wednesday, but it is worth enduring for the sunshine and warmth ahead this weekend.

New York-based relief efforts for victims of the Japanese earthquakes and tsunami are building, but slowly. A small rally will be held this weekend in Union Square, a Japanese pub is organizing a fund-raiser and church yard sales are planned. But the city’s Japanese population choose mostly to grieve silently, in line with the typically modest culture.

While they have watched the devastation in Japan unfold, Japanese immigrants have no centralized community, or even local elected official to rally around. Instead, “We want to be closer with the local people, since we have an opportunity to live in New York,” said Sumito Sugata, a Japanese financial services executive in the city. [NYT]

Other New Yorkers of Japanese heritage are trying to persuade their family members back home to seek refuge in New York. [The Daily News]


Federal investigators interviewed Ophadell Williams, the driver of the tour bus that crashed early Saturday morning in the Bronx, killing 15 people. Investigators are trying to determine if negligence on the part of Mr. Williams may have caused the crash. Criminal charges are unlikely, according to law experts, if Mr. Williams was not under the influence of alcohol or drugs. [NYT]

Tour buses traveling the stretch of Interstate 95 where the bus crashed — and where road workers are installing a new guard rail — seem to be approaching it with trepidation. While half were clocked over the speed limit of 50 miles per hour Tuesday morning, few were exceeding 60 m.p.h. [NYT]

The crash raised speculation about the relationship between casinos and bus lines that cater to Asian-Americans prone to gambling. Some estimates say Asian-Americans account for 25 percent of area casino revenue. Many casinos have marketing departments and offer table games geared specifically toward those demographics. And in many cases, casinos help subsidize the bus lines transporting their clientele. [NYT]

Meanwhile, another bus departing from Chinatown crashed and resulted in fatalities Monday night. Investigators are looking into whether a blown tire may have caused the bus, headed to Philadelphia, to crash on the New Jersey Turnpike. Two people, including the driver, died in the crash. [New York Post]

On Tuesday, the police set up a checkpoint on Allen Street in Chinatown to crack down on discount bus lines. Forty summonses were issued to the operators of the buses. [Wall Street Journal]

Crime and Public Safety

A retired New York City police sergeant passing a crime scene in Long Island on Saturday may have influenced another responding officer to shoot and kill a plainclothes officer on the scene, a police union president said Tuesday. The retired sergeant, John B. Cafarella, was interviewed by investigators about whether he yelled “Gun!” when he saw Officer Geoffrey J. Breitkopf exit an unmarked police car with a rifle, as he responded to a police-involved shooting in Massapequa Park. A Metropolitan Transportation Authority officer, thinking Mr. Breitkopf was dangerous, fatally shot him, the police say. [NYT] (Also see The Daily News and The New York Post.)

The girlfriend of the man accused in another police officer’s death was interviewed by detectives Tuesday. Kim Dykstra, who called in the domestic violence report that eventually ended in the death of Officer Alain Schaberger in Brooklyn on Sunday, had made similar calls against her boyfriend, George Villanueva, but never testified against him. Mr. Villanueva, who is accused of having pushed Mr. Schaberger over a railing to his death, is charged with first-degree murder. [New York Post]

The deceased officers will be laid to rest in separate ceremonies on Friday. [NYT]

The police are calling the fatal beating of an 18-year-old in Queens on Saturday a hate crime. The 18-year-old, Anthony Collao, was beaten to death at a party in Woodhaven by a group of teenagers who made homophobic slurs, the police said. [NYT]

Government & Politics

Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo’s first budget will not come easily. Both houses of the State Legislature on Tuesday passed budgets rejecting key proposals from Mr. Cuomo. The Senate and the Assembly reduced much of Mr. Cuomo’s $1.5 billion cuts in state aid to local schools, although those bodies do not agree on how to spend that money. [NYT]

People & Neighborhoods

Seaburn Books, the Astoria independent bookstore that is the last in Queens, will not close, as had been planned. After news reports of its demise, the shop’s landlord reduced the rent. The store will reopen later this month with an Internet cafe selling coffee and baked goods. Whether the nerdiest of indie bibliophiles come back remains to be seen. [The Daily News]

Several Manhattan co-ops may vote on complete smoking bans for residents wishing to light up in their apartments or condominiums. [Wall Street Journal]


March Madness begins Thursday (or it sort of began last night, depending on your allegiance to the N.C.A.A.) and while much of the region’s support is behind St. John’s University’s return to national prominence, it’s impossible not to hold out hope for a Long Island University forward, Julian Boyd. When Long Island faces overwhelming favorite North Carolina on Friday, Mr. Boyd will be playing with a malformed heart that forced him to sit out one year. He is the team’s second-leading scorer. [NYT]

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Delaware gaming revenue settling down

According to Gaming & Resort Development, national casino and racino revenue has emerged from the recession losses to post a modest 1% gain in 2010. Delaware’s racino revenue rose 1.5%.

The combination of the recession and the growth in gaming revenue in Pennsylvania and Maryland has dropped Delaware from an 11% share of regional gaming revenue to 8.7%. The good news for Delaware is that its share has held stable for three straight years, as Delaware offset slot revenue losses with revenue from table games and a sports parlay program.

The recovery in gaming is good news for Delaware state government as gaming activity generates almost 9% of the state’s tax revenue. Also, it potentially makes the losses in market share for Delaware’s three existing racinos less painful should casinos be approved for the City of Wilmington and the shore in Sussex County. The social costs of gaming remain a fly in soup.

Dr. John E. Stapleford, Director
Center for Economic Policy and Analysis
[email protected]

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Jazz Salon Hostess Locates Her Son After 33 Agonizing Days

On Tuesday morning, Marjorie Eliot, who has hosted thousands of people in her Upper Manhattan living room for Sunday jazz concerts, got a phone call that she had prayed for.

“A woman said, ‘Marjorie? I’m calling for Shaun,’ ” Ms. Eliot said. Her son, Shaun Eliot, who has suffered from mental illness, had been missing for 33 days. Ms. Eliot, whose weekly jazz salon has become the stuff of legend, had asked audiences to distribute fliers with Shaun’s picture. An About New York column about his disappearance was published in The Times on Feb. 18.

He apparently had spent much of that time in Metropolitan Hospital, “listed as an unidentified black male, blah, blah,” Ms. Eliot said. She could not understand why he had not been located earlier, but was delighted that he had asked a nurse to call home.

“He seems very well — the doctor and the social worker and everyone here are taking very good care of him,” Ms. Eliot said. “God answered.”

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New to the Board of Regents, but No Stranger to City Schools

These days, New York City school principals answer to data. Their schools, and their own futures, ride on whether graduation rates and test scores rise or fall. But several years back, when superintendents actively supervised, Kathleen M. Cashin led principals in some of the city’s worst neighborhoods, with notable success.

Born in Brooklyn, Dr. Cashin spent six years as a teacher, 16 years as a principal, and a dozen years as a superintendent, mostly in the Ocean Hill-Brownsville section of Brooklyn. When mayoral control started in 2003, the super-size region she led, which included some of the poorest neighborhoods in Brooklyn and Queens, promoted writing, science and nonfiction reading, showing the city’s strongest gains on annual reading and math tests.

“We had extensive student writing everywhere,” she recalled on Monday. “We had children reading books over and above what was required.”

Now Dr. Cashin has a new platform: Last week, she became one of three new members of the State Board of Regents, which oversees state education policy. She raised her hand when the regent who represented Brooklyn stepped down, and she was approved by the State Legislature. The position is unpaid.

Her job will be to weigh in on educational policy, even as the state as a whole moves more toward New York City’s education reforms, data-driven accountability high among them.

It is an intriguing appointment for someone who represents an old-school philosophy of teacher and school supervision: Dr. Cashin relished her role as a supervisor, saying principals benefited from the oversight, and had questioned city’s decision to eliminate the day-to-day supervision of principals under the banner of “principal empowerment.”

In 2007, when regional superintendents were eliminated, Dr. Cashin took on a new business-inflected title — she became the chief executive officer of the Knowledge Network, one of several “learning support organizations.” In that role, she could only offer encouragement and advice that principals did not necessarily have to follow. Three years later, she resigned, frustrated, as she watched some of her schools founder.

“We did the best we could with the hand we were dealt,” she said on Monday. “But I couldn’t effectuate the change that needed to be done.”

As a regent, Dr. Cashin will weigh in on issues like the ongoing political battle over last-in-first-out teacher layoffs, which she says has shifted the focus from what’s really important — training good teachers to become great. “I think we need to provide enormous support before we pull the plug on someone,” she said. “My preference would be support, support, support. I’m not worried about how to get rid of someone — I was always able to do that, tenured or not,” she said. “My concern was how do you bring your teachers up to a new level.”

She suggested that “principal empowerment” can sometimes pit principals against their teachers, instead of promoting collaboration. “You become empowered when you have teachers and principals working together,” she added. “Not by your title.”

On the question of curriculum, she said the new core standards, which are being adopted by states nationally and run dozens of pages in length are helpful, but there are too many of them, and they need to be simplified. “Curriculum is critical, to do in depth, and to do extremely well on what you do. You can’t cover everything. Then you water down your effectiveness.”

And finally, there needs to be a renewed focus on teaching and learning, she said. There is no longer a curriculum office at the city’s Department of Education headquarters, indicating its lack of centrality. But that is starting to change, she said.

“I think that the focus is on the preparation for the assessments,” she said, referring to standardized tests. “I am concerned about that. Very.”

“Everybody wants to do their own thing, but there are basic strands of knowledge that every American child needs to know,” like civics, the Constitution and geography, she said. “People are starting to realize we need a curriculum.”

Every Tuesday, education beat reporters for The New York Times take you inside the New York City schools system. Have a tip? Send it to [email protected].

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