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Attempts to reach out to homeless MTA failed, the inspector general found



Attempts to reach out to homeless MTA failed, the inspector general found

The multi-million-dollar MTA effort to reduce the homeless population on the city’s subway is a costly effort, the agency supervisor said in a damning new report.

Complaints about homelessness in the system surged after last year’s agency changed its annual $ 5 million effort to eject unprotected from subway trains and to shelters – while train delays related to homelessness continued quickly, the office of MTA Inspector General Carolyn Pokorny found.

The “very expensive” and “minimally effective” program spends at least $ 2.6 million in overtime above contact – but a team of 10 MTA police and social workers from the Bowery Citizens Committee contractor lure only three transients from the system per station per night, the report said that.

“At night, OIG staff observed the program, dozens of people who appeared to be homeless stayed on the train for every 1 who received service,” IG staff wrote.

Apart from the MTA “good faith” program, delays related to homeless individuals continue their upward trajectory since the first half of 2019, IG reported. Incidents involving homelessness caused 100 delays per month in January and February.

Drivers’ complaints about homelessness, meanwhile, jumped in August after months of decline, IG said. In February, the last month of data available, MTA received 550 complaints – almost double that of February 2019.

Teams began trying to persuade homeless people out of the system at the tip stations last summer after Governor Cuomo declared their presence in transit “terrible” and “the worst ever.”

But the effort was mainly overcome by MTA’s limited ability to force homeless people out of trains and a large network of community failures that have increased homelessness, the IG office concluded.

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The IG Office launched an investigation after auditors from the state’s Financial Supervisory Office Tom DiNapoli accused BRC workers of spending only 26 percent of their time conducting outreach directly to homeless individuals – half of the amount of time required by the company’s $ 5 million contract.

Pokorny himself went to inspect the situation at the Grand Central Terminal and Penn Station last year and sent a scathing letter to the agency saying he “saw people searching for food in trash cans just steps from the door of the BRC Office and homeless people lying on the ground directly outside the BRC Office . “

In the end, the IG investigation concluded that the BRC could explain its existence.

However, MTA failed in several ways to monitor the program and did not have a clear understanding of what would happen to the homeless if they received assistance from the BRC.

Outreach providers who note homeless people have reached “placement” if they receive a variety of services – even services that might get them back on the subway soon, the IG found.

MTA Inspector General Carolyn Pokorny at the board meeting in 2019.
MTA Inspector General Carolyn Pokorny at the board meeting in 2019.Gregory P. Mango

The entire program was effectively suspended in May, when MTA took the unprecedented step of shutting down the system every night to clean up the homeless and clean the train in the middle of a coronavirus. The agency also instituted new rules that forbade roaming the stations.

Itang recommended MTA to look closely at whether it is worth “spending millions every year” on this scheme when the subway is fully reopened – and needs to provide better oversight if so, the report said.

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MTA accepts the findings of the IG and promises change.

“We agree that in-depth discussions must take place with partner agencies before enforcement / outreach programs are established – to clarify roles, set performance metrics, set clear goals and establish responsibilities for collecting and reporting accurate data on any program impacts,” Sarah writes Feinberg, interim president of the City of New York Transit.

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5-star hotels lead the way in the restoration of Portuguese tourist sites



5-star hotels lead the way in the restoration of Portuguese tourist sites

In October, the number of overnight stays in 5-star hotels increased by 15.9% compared to the same month in 2019, which, according to additional information, namely from the DMC (Tourist Inception Agency), is associated with a strong increase in tourism from the United States. states.

Information published today by INE indicates that in October, compared to the same month before the pandemic, the number of overnight stays in tourist establishments in Portugal increased by 6.2%, with the strongest increase in hotels, at 8.2%. in which, therefore, 62.1% is concentrated. overnight stays.

The information shows that 4-star hotels, where the largest number of beds are concentrated, had 48.9% of overnight stays in October, totaling 2.05 million, which is +7.6% or more than 144.7 thousand than in October 2019.

This was followed by 3-star hotels with 927.3k, but this increase was about half of 5-star hotels, by 7.6% or 65.5k, to 927.3k, and then 5-star hotels with 857. 4 thousand overnight stays, an increase of 15.9%. or 117.6 thousand compared to the same pre-pandemic month.

In contrast to the evolution in these categories, there were 2- and 1-star hotels, in which the number of overnight stays decreased by 2.7%, or ten thousand, to 360.8 thousand.

The cheapest apart-hotels (three and two stars) also saw a decrease in overnight stays, from -20.9% or less than 24.4 thousand, in hotels and farms in Madeira, from -0.4% or less, to about 300, and in tourist settlements, from -7.7. % or less than 17.5 thousand.

At the same time, the number of apart-hotels increased by 1.2%, or 8.5 thousand, to 717.5 million, due to the increase in 5-star hotels by 6.7%, or 6.6 thousand, to 104.9 thousand, and 4-star, by 5.4 thousand% or 26.4 thousand to 519.9 thousand.

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Overnight stays in tourist apartments also increased by 3.2%, or 13.6 thousand, to 437.8 million, local accommodation, by 0.6%, or 5.5 thousand, to 901.2 thousand, and , primarily tourism in rural areas and housing, with an increase of 45.2% or 67.3 thousand to 216.5 thousand people.

The INE data also shows that Portuguese tourist sites were the best in October in terms of overnight stays this year, with peaks achieved by 5-, 4- and 3-star hotels, 5- and 4-star apartment hotels, accommodation . and rural tourism and housing development.

See also:

The US market is already setting new annual records in Portuguese hotels

The Portuguese hospitality industry experienced the best October in terms of number of guests and overnight stays.

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Government approves strategy to combat “Portuguese underrepresentation” in Brussels



Government approves strategy to combat "Portuguese underrepresentation" in Brussels

This afternoon the Council of Ministers will approve a national strategy to combat what it considers “underrepresentation de Portugal” in European institutions, in particular the European Commission.

“There is a significant shortage of Portuguese, especially those working for the Commission,” explains the Secretary of State for European Affairs in statements to Renaissance🇧🇷 The problem, according to Thiago Antunes, is not limited to middle management: “This is the first time Portugal does not have a CEO in the European Commission”.

The government wants to “correct this imbalance and fight this deficit in order to win.”ability to influence in decisions.” But it is not possible to increase the number of vacancies for the Portuguese, if only because there are no national quotas for employees working in institutions.

To go to Brussels or even work in Portugal on a full-time basis, you need to pass a series of tests prepared by EPSO (European Personnel Selection Office). 🇧🇷These are very difficult competitions.with very concrete evidence,” the official explains.

The strategy will be based on several pillars: training, increasing grants and encouraging the mobility of civil servants. The Portuguese government is going to create a national training center to “better prepare our candidates for competitions”; to bet on “dissemination of opportunities; increase the balls (by quantity and value); and create a statute that allows those who work in the public administration of Portugal to move into the European public administration.

The aim is to achieve “greater representation” in the European Commission in order to have “greater influence” on the decision. Although the strategy is to strengthen the Portuguese presence in Brussels and the employees do not work for doesn’t matter that they are portuguese“, he defends.

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Fruits may not appear early or may not even be measurable. “It will take some time until we see results,” admits the former secretary of state to the prime minister. But the wait does not stop the Portuguese government. “We have to start right now,” Thiago Antunes insists, pointing to the demographic problem among those working in Brussels. “There are a lot of Portuguese who came in at the time of our accession and are now retiring.”

The strategy aims to reverse the cycle of loss of Portuguese representation among the 27. The diploma will be approved this Wednesday in the Council of Ministers.

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“His manager is Portuguese and…”; The agent changes plans, and Luis Castro “arranges” the problem in the protection of “Botafogo”



"His manager is Portuguese and...";  The agent changes plans, and Luis Castro "arranges" the problem in the protection of "Botafogo"


The defender must return from loan ahead of schedule, and the Glorioso coach will have to make a decision at the beginning of the preseason.

Photo: Jorge Rodriguez/AGIF.  First, Luis Castro does not have Diego Loureiro for 2023.
Photo: Jorge Rodriguez/AGIF. First, Luis Castro does not have Diego Loureiro for 2023.

With the end of the season Botafogo its reformulation is already underway with the participation of Luis Castro. Names like Carlinhos, for example, have already left General Severiano, but there is a tendency for the “purge” to continue a little longer. Especially with the return of borrowed athletes during the year.

goalkeeper case Diego Loureiro, who played on loan at Atlético GO, promoted to Serie B. Curiously, the Botafogo archer has a contract at Goiania until the end of 2023, but Dragao president Adson Batista is pessimistic about the player’s consistency.

“Diego Loureiro is a bit off because he still has a contract with Botafogo, his manager is Portuguese and he has a different vision.” said the director in an interview with radio Sagres from the capital of Goiás.

The goalkeeper played only two games for Atlético-GO, who were betting on Renan in the starting lineup. If he returns to Rio, Loureiro will likely see high competition in the black and white net as Luis Castro now has alternatives to Gatito Fernandes and Lucas Perry.

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