GOVERNMENT: Saving social security

It’s a potential Social Security crisis: for the first time ever, Social Security will pay out more than it takes in this year.


GOVERNMENT: Fed Looks to Spur Growth by Buying Government Debt

Federal Reserve officials will reinvest principal payments on their mortgage holdings into long-term Treasury securities, the central bank’s first attempt to bolster growth in more than a year.

“The pace of economic recovery is likely to be more modest in the near term than had been anticipated,” the Federal Open Market Committee said in a statement in Washington. “To help support the economic recovery in a context of price stability, the Committee will keep constant the Federal Reserve’s holdings of securities at their current level.” The Fed retained a commitment to keep its benchmark interest rate close to zero for an “extended period.”

GOVERNMENT: Calendar of Election Dates

How concerned are you about your future?

What have you done to be informed about those that want to make polices that effect your daily living?

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2010 Election Dates

  • Primary Election: August 24, 2010
  • General Election: November 2, 2010

GOVERNMENT: City Manager’s Biweekly Report: July 15-August 4, 2010

The “City Manager’s Biweekly Report to the City Commission” provides information about significant upcoming activities, projects, and meetings in the City of Gainesville over the course of the next two to three weeks. In addition to brief descriptions on each of the upcoming activities, you can click on hyperlinks for more information regarding the presented topic.


Gainesville, Florida – On July 2, Florida Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Canady signed an Administrative Order that initiated the Florida Innocence Commission.  Twenty-three Florida legal professionals, including judges, legislators, prosecutors, law enforcement officials, professors and attorneys have been appointed to a two-year term that ends on June 30, 2012.   This diverse group of individuals was each appointed for their competence, experience and commitment.  Their stated mission is to conduct a study of the causes of wrongful convictions and to recommend measures to prevent such convictions. Gainesville Attorney Rod Smith of Avera & Smith is one of only seven Florida lawyers appointed to the commission.  Rod Smith is a well-known and respected civil trial attorney who counsels on select criminal cases.  He is also a former State Attorney of the Eighth Judicial Circuit and a former Florida State Senator. He has a deep understanding of the criminal justice system and its attendant issues.

The importance of the Commission’s work is demonstrated in a statement taken from Chief Justice Canady’s Administrative Order,” …the occurrence of cases in which the innocent are convicted and punished constitutes a grave injustice; and….requires a comprehensive examination of the causes of wrongful convictions and an in-depth consideration of measures to prevent the conviction of the innocent.”

Data on the Death Penalty Information Center and the Florida Innocence Project websites reveal that   nationally over 130 people have been released from death row with evidence of their innocence since 1973.  From 1973-1999, there was an average of 3.1 exonerations per year. From 2000-2007, there has been an average of 5 exonerations. In Florida, 12 individuals are cited as having been proven innocent after conviction and incarceration.  A review of the Florida cases reveals that a majority of the exonerations were due to post-conviction DNA testing.  It also reveals that many of those on the list spent decades, as much as 35 years, in prison for a crime they did not commit. Attorney Smith comments, “The work of this commission has strong implications for the way cases are prosecuted and defendants are convicted in the future.  Every effort will be         made to assure that no innocent person is or remains convicted of a crime. I look forward to working closely with the highly knowledgeable and accomplished professionals that have been appointed to this commission.”

Press release provided by Doug Perkins with LegalPR

GOVERNMENT: Price Of Stamps Going Up Again

The price of a first-class stamp is going up next January 2nd by two pennies.  Pending formal approval by Congress and the Postal Rate Commission the Postal Service wants to increase the price of a stamp to 46-cents.  Other postage costs would also increase—including an extra two cents for a postcard and an 8-percent boost in the price of mailing magazines and other periodicals.
The director of the Alliance of Non-Profit Mailers says the increase amounts “to another tax on Americans at a time when the economy can least afford it.”

The Postal Service says the rate hike would bring in $2.5 billion dollars next year less than half the projected budget deficit for fiscal year 2011.


ATLANTA – U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Deputy Secretary Ron Sims today swore in Edward L. Jennings, Jr. as HUD’s Regional Administrator serving the eight states in the Southeast Region including Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee, as well as, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

As Regional Administrator, Jennings will lead over 1200 employees in the largest HUD region in the nation encompassing over 64 million people and 380,000 square miles. Jennings will also serve as HUD’s liaison to mayors, city managers, elected representatives, state and local officials, Congressional delegations, private and non-profit affordable housing developers, stakeholders, and customers. He will oversee the delivery of HUD programs and services to communities and evaluate their efficiency and effectiveness. Jennings is one of 10 regional directors in the United States.

“I am both humbled and excited at the prospect of leading one of the most dynamic regions in the nation especially during these most challenging times,” said Jennings. HUD’s role in the daily lives of literally millions is increasing as are our efforts to work seamlessly with other federal, state, and local agencies to make a difference in communities throughout the region and nation.”

“Ed’s decision to join us at HUD could not have come at a better time,” said Sims. “He provides the strong vision, leadership and innovation coupled with real world experience that the Obama Administration and HUD are looking for especially in a region as diverse and challenging as the Southeast. I have full confidence that he will be able to develop strong synergies of effort among those partners and stakeholders that are so critical to improving and transforming HUD and our ability to serve our communities.”

A fifth generation Floridian and son of the former Mayor of Gainesville, Jennings served as a State Representative from 2000-2006 where he worked to expand access to health care, employment, transportation, and was a staunch affordable housing advocate to underserved communities. As founder of Jennings Development Group, Inc., he helped to develop hundreds of units of affordable housing and to promote economic and community development in Gainesville.

Prior to accepting the appointment as HUD Regional Director, Jennings served in the Florida House of Representatives. Throughout his legislative career, he served on various committees including the Vice Chair of Community Colleges and Workforce Development; Commerce Council; Transportation and Economic Development Appropriations Committee; and the Insurance Committee. He also served as the Chair of the Florida Conference of Black State Legislators and the board of directors for the National Conference of Black State Legislators.

Jennings founded his development firm 12 years ago, that has become an economic vehicle for revitalizing East Gainesville. As a business leader seeking to make a significant impact in his community, Jennings served on the boards of the: Alachua County Public Schools Foundation, Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce, Builder’s Association of North Central Florida and African American Accountability Alliance. He has garnered numerous civic and professional honors for his community and legislative contributions. He earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with a minor in Spanish from the University of Florida, where he also served as President of Florida’s most prestigious leadership honorary, Florida Blue Key

Click here for the link to the main story.

We like to thank Magruder, Jerrie G with Dept of HUD for sharing.