Eric Mikkelson. File photo.Prairie Village city councilman Eric Mikkelson on Monday mounted an unsuccessful last ditch effort to keep $63,000 earmarked for compensating the mayor and councilmembers out of the version of the 2018 city budget that will come back to the council for final approval later this summer.While the inclusion of the funds for mayor and council pay is only preliminary at this point — even if the council votes to approve the budget as published, the council would still have to vote separately to actually authorize the spending of the budgeted money on pay for councilmembers and the mayor — Mikkelson argued the move was premature.At its meeting earlier this month, the council agreed to include questions about whether the mayor and city council should be compensated as part of a citizen survey it will spend $15,000 to administer sometime next year. To Mikkelson, the idea that money would be budgeted for council and mayor pay before the city had gotten resident feedback through the survey didn’t add up.“We’ve already signaled what the council’s intentions are before we have the results. We’re allocating $63,000 before we even know what the survey is going to say,” Mikkelson said. “If the survey comes back next year, and let’s assume the questions are perfect, the interpretation is unbiased, and the citizens overwhelmingly want us to pay ourselves, we can do that…But what we shouldn’t do, in my opinion, is take $63,000 from the taxpayers’ pockets now, in 2018, and designate it to pay ourselves.”But Mikkelson’s attempts to get the council to reconsider the motion approved at the council’s last meeting that advanced the budget with the $63,000 in governing body compensation didn’t get any traction from the councilmembers who had voted for it two weeks before. At one point, Mayor Laura Wassmer admonished Mikkelson for continuing to raise the same points.“You can vote no if you’d like to vote no,” Wassmer said of the motion to publish the budget. “You’ve had multiple occasions to express your views, and they haven’t changed. So I’d like to move forward.”Mikkelson voted against the measure, as did councilmembers Jori Nelson and Serena Schermoly, who have also expressed concerns with the idea of budgeting pay for members of the governing body. Nelson pointed out that no other mayors or city councilmembers have received compensation for their work for the city since its founding more than six decades ago. Dan Runion was absent. All other councilmembers voted in favor of publishing the budget.For a year now, Mikkelson has been a strong critic of efforts that would provide compensation to any sitting member of the governing body before he or she has stood for reelection.
Deng leads young generation of middle distance runnersFreshman Goaner Deng is making an impact in his first competitive season with the Gophers.Jaak Jensen, Daily File PhotoMinnesota’s Goaner Deng runs the 600-meter dash on Friday, Feb. 15, 2013, at the University Fieldhouse. Megan RyanApril 11, 2013Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintRedshirt freshman Goaner Deng competed last month in the 4×400-meter relay at the NCAA indoor championships, an honorable accomplishment in his first competitive season with the Gophers.But the proudest moment of his track and field career may have come last outdoor season when he finally raced in an 800-meter run and was officially inducted into the Gophers’ middle-distance “MD” Mafia.Deng is spearheading the youngest generation of the middle-distance runners — a group with a strong tradition of success at Minnesota. Last year, senior Harun Abda and recent graduate David Pachuta competed at both indoor and outdoor national meets as well as at the U.S. Olympic trials.Deng said having role models like Abda and Pachuta helped him improve during his redshirt season last year.“They just kind of grabbed us by the ear and showed us everything and [said], ‘this is how we’re going to do it, and this is how you’re going to get better,’” Deng said.Deng started seriously running his sophomore year in high school and battled injuries in his high school career. Assistant coach Paul Thornton decided to redshirt him to give him more time to develop.Deng said initially he wasn’t excited about redshirting, but he realizes now how it helped him be more successful this year.“The redshirt year really teaches you a lot about yourself,” he said.Deng won six events this indoor season and had top-three finishes in the 4×400 and distance medley relays at the Big Ten indoor championships. He finished 12th in the 4×400 at the NCAA indoor championships. But his success in his first competitive season didn’t surprise the team.“We get a chance to watch him run every single day,” Thornton said. “So the type of things … we’re seeing out of him out of each meet does not shock us at all.”Deng said he’s still learning from the upperclassmen — who still play jokes on him.As a captain and senior, Abda said he tries his best to mentor the younger generation and keep the history of middle-distance success alive. But he said part of Deng’s success comes from just enjoying being on the track and around the team.“He’s having fun,” Abda said. “He’s one of those guys who just doesn’t stress himself or he jokes around. He gets along with everyone.”Abda said Deng’s also a man of many nicknames, like “Indiana Goans” and “Go Daddy Go.”But as he approaches the 400-meter hurdles event in the upcoming outdoor season, his teammates might have given him the most fitting nickname — “Daddy Long Leg.”
“It’s good, because it really exposes where we can start [improving,]” Young said. Spec also won in the No. 1 singles spot, coming back after losing the first set. The men’s tennis team also played Dartmouth and ended with a result similar to the women’s team. Little changed when the two teams met again on Saturday as Minnesota lost 7-0 to Dartmouth in Hanover, N.H. Teams combine to lose three dualsBoth teams lost to Dartmouth on the road and the men lost to Columbia.Joe Sulik, Daily File PhotoGophers sophomore Matic Spec returns the ball to South Florida in the Baseline Tennis Center on Friday, Feb. 5. Jack WhiteFebruary 22, 2016Jump to CommentsShare on FacebookShare on TwitterShare via EmailPrintThe Gophers women’s tennis team played Dartmouth in the fall and came away with one singles and one doubles win. “I mean, they just absolutely played lights out, their team,” head coach Chuck Merzbacher said. “They played well in every singles spot. It’s hard to be disappointed in your team when the other team played that well.” The Gophers lost the doubles point after falling in all three matches. “Well, I think it’s a good way for us to learn how to win more points,” head coach Geoff Young said. “These teams, they don’t don’t miss much, so you really have to earn those points.” The Gophers lost 5-2 on Friday and also lost to No. 16 Columbia 7-0 on Sunday in the two teams’ second meeting in the spring season. Once again, the Gophers were unable to score a point against Columbia, losing every doubles match. The team was also swept in singles, with all matches being decided in two sets, and lost 7-0. Minnesota took the doubles point against Dartmouth with two victories from the No. 2 and 3 doubles spots. Junior Jeremy Lynn and sophomore Matic Spec, paired together in the No. 2 spot, won their fourth straight match together on Friday. Minnesota also lost six singles matches, with all of them being decided in two sets. Senior Jessika Mozia lost a close second set in her match 7-5 in the No. 4 singles spot. Men lose twice “If I felt like [the team was] doing something wrong, I would tell them,” Merzbacher said. “They just played extremely well. Their coach even said, ‘We couldn’t play any better.’ ” He was the only Minnesota player to win a singles match, and the Gophers lost the dual 5-2. Minnesota then faced Columbia on Sunday for the second time, after losing 4-0 in New York City on Jan. 24.
The Washington Post:Money can only buy you happiness if you spend it right. Previous research has shown that people value “experiences” like vacations and fancy meals more than they value material goods like cars and clothes. In a new study published in Psychological Science, researchers report that consumers actually enjoy waiting for experiences more, too.In the first part of the study, titled “Waiting for Merlot,” 97 students were asked to imagine one type of purchase or another in their future and to rate their feelings as more like impatience or excitement. While they mostly reported positive feelings across the board, things like concert tickets and vacations were described as more exciting to think about than were laptops and clothes, which the subjects were impatient to acquire.Read the whole story: The Washington Post More of our Members in the Media >
“Current interventions for suicidality have important limitations, which means there is a need for developing and identifying novel interventions for suicidality. Given this need, as well as research indicating that ayahuasca shows promise as an intervention for various mental health concerns (e.g., depression), we were interested in exploring whether the positive therapeutic effects of ayahuasca extended to suicidality.”The researchers conducted a secondary analysis on data from a randomized placebo-controlled trial, which was published in Psychological Medicine in 2019. The study provided preliminary evidence that the psychedelic brew had rapid antidepressant effects.“When administered within the appropriate context, and with proper preparation, the psychoactive brew ayahuasca may show promise as an intervention for suicidality,” Zeifman told PsyPost.In the study, 29 participants with treatment-resistant depression and no history of psychotic disorders were randomly assigned to undergo a single treatment session, in which they were given either ayahuasca or a placebo substance to drink. None of the participants had prior experience using psychedelics.A trained psychiatrist assessed suicidality before the treatment session, as well as 1 day, 2 days, and 7 days afterward.Zeifman and his colleagues found ayahuasca had a medium to large effect on suicidality, but this effect was not statistically significant. In other words, it is possible that ayahuasca may not lead to decreases in suicidality.However, it is also possible that ayahuasca does reduce suicidality, but the study lacked the power to reach statistical significance because there were not enough participants. The effect sizes suggest the topic warrants further consideration, the researchers said.“Our study is characterized by a number of important limitations, including a small sample size, exclusion of individuals that were acutely suicidal, and short-term follow-up (i.e., 7 days after administration). Ultimately, it will be import for future research to use larger samples, as well as examine the safety and effectiveness of ayahuasca as an intervention for individuals with acute levels of suicidality,” Zeifman said.“These findings help to extend past research on the potential therapeutic benefits associated with ayahuasca. Nonetheless, our findings are preliminary and suggest that there is an important need for additional research exploring the potential therapeutic benefits associated with ayahuasca.”The study, “The Impact of Ayahuasca on Suicidality: Results from a Randomized Controlled Trial“, was authored by Richard Zeifman, Fernanda Palhano-Fontes, Jaime Hallak, Emerson A. Nunes, João Paulo Maia-de-Oliveira, and Draulio B. de Araujo. Share on Facebook Share Scientists are beginning to examine whether the psychedelic brew known as ayahuasca can help reduce suicide risk. But the first study to examine the topic has found inconclusive results. The research has been accepted for publication in Frontiers in Pharmacology.Ayahuasca, a psychedelic concoction used for centuries by indigenous Amazon tribes, contains the powerful psychedelic drug dimethyltryptamine (DMT).“Suicide is one of the leading causes of death, accounting for nearly 1 million deaths each year,” said study author Richard Zeifman, a PhD student in Clinical Psychology at Ryerson University. LinkedIn Email Pinterest Share on Twitter
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TNSC conducted the research jointly with Associate Professor Shin-Ichi Ohira of the Faculty of Advanced Science and Technology at Kumamoto University.The analyser traces moisture in nitrogen using an MOF with a porous structure as a moisture-sensitive agent that fulfils a response speed of less than five minutes and lower detection limit of 10 vol. ppb at a cost of less than \1 million.TNSC plans to move forward with testing at its related plants, and progress to public sales within the fiscal year ending 2021 (from April 2020 to March 2021) through long-term field testing in actual environments.The company will also move ahead on technological development and commercialisation for application with other types of gases and greater sensitivity.Technical OverviewTNSC explained the process: “MOF is a porous agent group formed through a coordinate bond between metal ions and organic ligands and is a next-generation functional material expected to be used in applications such as gas storage, separation, or catalyst.” Source: Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation Source: Taiyo Nippon Sanso Corporation“Cu-BTC is an MOF formed by divalent copper ion (Cu2+) and benzene-1,3,5-tricarboxylate (BTC) that absorbs and desorbs moisture molecules at room temperature and specific wavelength absorbance changes in conjunction with that (Fig. 1, above).”“The analyser’s basic principle is to detect the absorbance change and convert that to moisture concentration.”“In trace amounts, changes in moisture concentration have a rapid and high correlation with changes in absorbance, so showing this enables highly reliable measurements of high sensitivity and rapid responsiveness.”“As shown in the measurement example in Fig. 2 (see below), the indicated values rose immediately after the introduction of nitrogen gas containing trace amounts of moisture, confirming that the analyser responds faster than conventional general-purpose analysers and solidifying that it can be used as a moisture impurity concentration control device in processes with extreme moisture aversion.”
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The proportion of people needing legal advice to make out a lasting power of attorney has dropped from 80% to 20% since the introduction of an online system, the government claimed today.Citing Lasting Power of Attorney as an example of a government service successfully moving online, a paper published by the Cabinet Office said that previously, ‘80% of users needed help from a solicitor, adding to their financial and emotional burden’. By contrast ‘80% are able to complete the digital service without needing to engage a solicitor, and the error rate on submitted forms has dropped, avoiding the frustration and cost of repeat submissions.’Online lasting power of attorney went fully live in May this year. The Law Society warned that the digital service is still in its early days. ‘For some, the option to go digital will be welcome. However, many people choose to use a solicitor both for the personal service and because they are likely to need other legal services at the same time,’ a spokesperson said. The Cabinet Office paper, Efficiency and reform in the next parliament sets out the government’s plans to cut the cost of public services in the next five years, especially through the use of IT. Criminal justice will be a particular focus, the paper suggests. To reduce cost and delay, the government ‘will move towards a digital end-to-end criminal justice system, where information is captured once by a police officer responding to a crime and then flows through the system without duplication or reworking,’ the paper says.’Video technology should be the default unless victims and witnesses, suspects, lawyers or police officers are required in the courtroom.’