June 9, 2016 |
HARRISBURG - Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission officials and civil rights advocates called Tuesday for increased state funding at a hearing convened after reports in the Inquirer and the Daily News about major problems at the agency. "Where we are now is kind of sad," said interim Commission Chairman Joel Bolstein, who described the antidiscrimination agency as a "vibrant place" when Gov. Tom Ridge appointed him to the board in 1999. As a result of funding cuts in recent years, Bolstein said, the commission is now run by a skeleton crew of dedicated but overloaded workers.
June 9, 2016
By Stacey Kallem, Barbara H. Chaiyachati, and Irène P. Mathieu One of the most rewarding parts of training to be a pediatrician is caring for a newborn patient and then watching that child grow up into a bright, curious, and engaging toddler. However, all too often, we see those perfect newborns we care for face obstacles beyond their control that hinder healthy development. Adversity in the first few years of life, such as poverty, parental substance abuse, and neighborhood violence, can result in toxic stress, or dangerously high stress over long periods of time.
June 7, 2016 |
Socially responsible investing used to be on the fringe. Now, it's officially mainstream, said Amy O'Brien, managing director and head of TIAA Global Asset Management's Responsible Investment Team. But for any given company or group of them, what constitutes the relevant ways to be socially responsible or sustainable? "Jargon is certainly part of the problem," O'Brien said. To solve that problem, the fund-tracking firm Morningstar earlier this year introduced the industry's first scoring system for mutual funds and exchange-traded funds for ESG, or environmental, social, and governance metrics.
June 5, 2016 |
The preschool teacher found dead and chained to a cinder block in a Chester County pond this week had started a new job in April. Ryan Stevyn Benjamin especially enjoyed working with children who struggled. She was fluent in Spanish and sign language, and as a child and young adult, she traveled to China, Brazil, and Argentina with her mother. Her friends and family said she was humble and caring. Christine Dragan, executive director of Warwick Child Care Center Inc., said Benjamin was an intelligent woman who "found her passion working with young children.
June 3, 2016 |
For weeks, defense lawyers have portrayed U.S. Rep. Chaka Fattah and wealthy political fund-raiser Herbert Vederman as the best of friends - a "political odd couple" who forged a personal bond despite backgrounds that could not be more different. On Wednesday, prosecutors in the two men's federal corruption trial sought to show that the friendship came with privileges. Witnesses ranging from Vederman's girlfriend to the man who ran President Obama's 2012 reelection campaign testified that Fattah had on several occasions extended his influence to benefit Vederman, his loved ones, and his ambitions.
June 2, 2016 |
EVEN THOUGH it comes with the $90 million promise of universal pre-kindergarten and refurbished parks and recreation centers, I'm highly skeptical of Philadelphia's proposed 3-cents-per-ounce sugary-drink tax. Not only because researchers acknowledge that low-income blacks and Latinos are the highest consumers of sugary drinks, but also because, under the city's current work rules, those same low-income people would be barred from getting the...
May 30, 2016 |
Fund-raising for the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia has been a tougher slog this year than in the past, but convention host committee chair Ed Rendell says he expects to meet the party's financial targets by the time the convention opens two months from now. The party plans to raise some $64 million for the conclave, which will run July 25-28. Rendell said Saturday the party was $9 million to $10 million short of that goal now. Rendell attributed the difficulty to congressional budget cuts - lawmakers once appropriated $18 million each to the Republican and Democratic conventions, but no more - and a drop in corporate giving.
May 29, 2016
A former Atlantic County firefighter was sentenced Thursday to one year of probation for stealing more than $75,000 from a benevolent association fund, prosecutors said. Michael C. Palmer, 36, of Somers Point, also was ordered to pay full restitution to the New Jersey Fireman's Mutual Benevolent Association Local 41. While employed as a lieutenant with the Margate Fire Department, Palmer used his position as secretary-treasurer of Local 41 to take the money from its bank accounts from 2011 until 2014.
May 28, 2016 |
When investors think of Vanguard, they think of index funds. But the $3 trillion mutual fund giant oversees more than just low-cost passively managed benchmark funds linked to the S&P 500 and other indexes. New Vanguard fund launches in the U.K. on Wednesday highlight how the low-cost king of mutual fund investing is expanding its footprint overseas - continuing to extend its low-fee brand to active management as well, in what may be a test-run at product launches back home. Currently, out of its total $3.2 trillion in assets, $2.2 trillion that Vanguard manages for investors is in index funds.