England’s green belt under extreme pressure as planned developments increase four-fold in eight years | UK News


The number of houses planned to be built on former green belt land in England has increased four-fold in the last eight years.

Green belt land, which is legally protected from development, is facing extreme and sustained pressure, according to a new report from countryside charity CPRE.

In Calderdale in West Yorkshire, the council wants to build 10,000 homes over ten years – 600 of them on green belt land next to Greetland village, which has a population of 11,000.

Calderdale Council reviewed its green belt land in 2017 and concluded that some of it could be developed under “exceptional circumstances such as unmet housing or employment land needs that cannot be met elsewhere”.

The proposed development in Greetland is part of the council’s local plan which is currently going through a planning inspector’s examination process, with the next round of hearings expected in the summer.

Lyndsey Ashton, who lives next to the proposed development, set up the Greetland Pressure Group to fight the plans and said she now has 1,400 members.

“This is unsustainable. It’s neglecting the environment in favour of developers cherry-picking beautiful spots to build expensive homes,” she said.

Crispin Truman, the chief executive of CPRE, which is supporting the Greetland campaigners, said their research shows developments on former green belt land on average have fewer affordable homes and fewer homes per acre.

“To see the growing level of threat faced by the green belt, the countryside next door for millions of people living in our towns and cities, is extremely worrying,” he said.

Image:
Campaigners say the green belt faces a ‘growing level of threat’

“The government can and must act to stop the loss of green belt and ensure greater access to nature and green space is at the heart of our planning system.”

In a statement, a spokesperson for the housing ministry said: “Protecting the green belt is a priority and our national planning policy reinforces regenerating brownfield sites and prioritising urban areas.

“Our reforms to the planning system will protect our cherished countryside and green spaces as well as deliver high-quality and sustainable homes.”

Thank you for stopping to visit My Local Pages. We Hope you enjoyed checking this post involving European news titled “England’s green belt under extreme pressure as planned developments increase four-fold in eight years | UK News”. This article was shared by My Local Pages as part of our local news services.

#Englands #green #belt #extreme #pressure #planned #developments #increase #fourfold #years #News



Source link

Scott Morrison insists Linda Reynolds will keep Defence ministry despite pressure over Brittany Higgins scandal


Prime Minister Scott Morrison insists Linda Reynolds will return to work as Australia’s Defence Minister despite mounting pressure to demote her for her handling of Brittany Higgins’s rape allegations.

Senator Reynolds remains in hospital, where she was admitted at her cardiologist’s urging out of an abundance of caution for a pre-existing condition on Wednesday morning.

“She’s doing a great job, and I have great confidence in the work that she’s doing,” Mr Morrison told reporters on Thursday morning.

Senator Reynolds has been under sustained pressure for more than a week, following revelations Ms Higgins was allegedly raped inside the minister’s office in 2019.

Ms Higgins formally lodged her complaint with the Australian Federal Police (AFP) on Wednesday.

Mr Morrison said he has spoken with Senator Reynolds “a couple of times” and expected she would remain in hospital for the coming days.

“I can tell you that she is much improved from where she was the night before,” he said.

“Under doctor’s instructions she will remain under observation for a few more days yet.

“She’s looking forward to returning to her duties and getting on with the job.

“She’s doing a great job.”

Linda Reynolds wiped tears from her eye during Question Time in the Senate chamber after facing questions about her handling of Brittany Higgins’s allegations.(AAP: Mike Tsikas)

Senator Reynolds’s hospitalisation came hours ahead of a long-planned National Press Club address, where she was due to face journalists for the first time since the rape allegations emerged.

Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton is also facing fresh scrutiny for his handling of the allegations.

He is standing by his decision to not personally inform Mr Morrison about the allegations when the AFP told him about it on February 11, four days before Mr Morrison found out from the media.

Woman sitting at a desk, smiles for the camera.
Brittany Higgins quit her job as a staffer in the government earlier this year.(Supplied)

Independent senator Jacqui Lambie, a former soldier, told Sky that Senator Reynolds wasn’t up for the job and should stand down.

But Liberal frontbencher Richard Colbeck insists Senator Reynolds should stay in her portfolio.

Mr Dutton is considered a likely replacement for Senator Reynolds as Defence Minster.

He told reporters he had texted Senator Reynolds a message to wish her well.

“I have been very clear. Linda should continue in her job,” Mr Dutton said.

“She’s very capable.

“I see Linda performing around the National Security Committee of Cabinet and she has not only great intellect to bring to the job but she has a great capacity.”

Thank you for stopping by to visit My Local Pages and reading this post on ACT news titled “Scott Morrison insists Linda Reynolds will keep Defence ministry despite pressure over Brittany Higgins scandal”. This news article was brought to you by My Local Pages as part of our local news services.

#Scott #Morrison #insists #Linda #Reynolds #Defence #ministry #pressure #Brittany #Higgins #scandal



Source link

Pressure mounts on Brisbane City Council to reduce developer influence


Pressure is mounting on Brisbane City Council to amend its planning system to stop developers having a direct input to the neighbourhood planning process.

Building heights, the extent of green space and placement of community facilities as residential, commercial and industrial areas are established are determined in local neighbourhood plans.

Brisbane's oldest suburb, Kangaroo Point, is facing the pressures of over-development its residents say.

Brisbane’s oldest suburb, Kangaroo Point, is facing the pressures of over-development its residents say.Credit:Tony Moore

Neighbourhood plans are being developed for Bridgeman Downs, Eight Mile Plains Gateway, Sandgate District and Nathan/Salisbury/Moorooka and all have community planning teams.

The council has community development forums, where local representatives are invited to help draft neighbourhood plans.

Since 2015, community groups in Upper Kedron, South Brisbane, Paddington, Toowong and Kangaroo Point have questioned the direct involvement of developers as “local participants” as neighbourhood plans are developed.

Kangaroo Point resident Ian Scott, a specialist physician at Princess Alexandra Hospital, addressed Tuesday’s council meeting on residents’ concerns at the increasing congestion after the suburb’s neighbourhood plan was developed between 2017 and 2019.

Kangaroo Point residents say the minutes show developers were among the 30 people among the 83 interested community representatives who wanted to guide the Kangaroo Point neighbourhood plan.

Dr Scott said developers should have a “very limited role” as neighbourhood plans are developed.

Dr Scott said developers in neighbourhood planning should “absent themselves” and mirror the action of councillors who advise a council meeting of having a material conflict of interest in a matter on the council agenda.

“That is absolutely the way it should also operate in the neighbourhood planning process,” he said.

Kangaroo Point residents - including spokesman Dr Ian Scott (left) outside City Hall - are questioning the influence of developers on Brisbane City Council’s neighbourhood planning process.

Kangaroo Point residents – including spokesman Dr Ian Scott (left) outside City Hall – are questioning the influence of developers on Brisbane City Council’s neighbourhood planning process.

Queensland University of Technology planning lecturer Phil Heywood, who has advised the South Brisbane community on urban renewal issues after leaving academic life, said it was “overdue” for the council to review its neighbourhood planning process.

Associate Professor Heywood said inner-city communities were “heartily sick” of total volume of development that was being permitted “incrementally” around the 27 inner-city neighbourhood plans.

However, Planning Institute of Australia state manager Matt Collins said best practice planning should maximise opportunities for a “diversity of voices”.

“Land-owners are an important stakeholder and should be included in engagement processes,” he said.

“In achieving best practice planning outcomes, the public interest is paramount, so it is vital that measures are in place to ensure that private commercial interests do not determine planning outcomes.”

Mr Collins said consultation should be “open, transparent, and accountable”.

“This should include clear processes to manage potential or perceived conflicts of interest amongst decision-makers,” he said.

Brisbane deputy mayor Krista Adams, the chairwoman of the council’s planning committee, said community forums did not make neighbourhood planning decisions.

Loading

Cr Adams said community planning teams were involved in the early stages of preparing and reviewing neighbourhood plans.

“The relevant local community is invited to nominate to be a member of a community planning team and this is a wide, open invite with no individual or addressed invitations issued,” she said.

“The final team members are selected by council’s neighbourhood planning team to ensure a diverse but manageable number of people to provide insights and feedback.”

Thank you for stopping by and reading this news release involving “What’s On in the City of Brisbane” named “Pressure mounts on Brisbane City Council to reduce developer influence”. This post was shared by MyLocalPages as part of our holiday events and news aggregator services.

#Pressure #mounts #Brisbane #City #Council #reduce #developer #influence



Source link

Pressure mounts on Brisbane City Council to reduce developer influence


Since 2015, community groups in Upper Kedron, South Brisbane, Paddington, Toowong and Kangaroo Point have questioned the direct involvement of developers as “local participants” as neighbourhood plans are developed.

Kangaroo Point resident Ian Scott, a specialist physician at Princess Alexandra Hospital, addressed Tuesday’s council meeting on residents’ concerns at the increasing congestion after the suburb’s neighbourhood plan was developed between 2017 and 2019.

Kangaroo Point residents say the minutes show developers were among the 30 people among the 83 interested community representatives who wanted to guide the Kangaroo Point neighbourhood plan.

Dr Scott said developers should have a “very limited role” as neighbourhood plans are developed.

“They can make written submissions, but they should not be in face-to-face meetings and they should not be in meetings where the draft plan, as it nears completion, is being finalised, simply because they have a conflict of interest,” he said.

Dr Scott said developers in neighbourhood planning should “absent themselves” and mirror the action of councillors who advise a council meeting of having a material conflict of interest in a matter on the council agenda.

“That is absolutely the way it should also operate in the neighbourhood planning process,” he said.

Kangaroo Point residents – including spokesman Dr Ian Scott (left) outside City Hall – are questioning the influence of developers on Brisbane City Council’s neighbourhood planning process.

Queensland University of Technology planning lecturer Phil Heywood, who has advised the South Brisbane community on urban renewal issues after leaving academic life, said it was “overdue” for the council to review its neighbourhood planning process.

Associate Professor Heywood said inner-city communities were “heartily sick” of total volume of development that was being permitted “incrementally” around the 27 inner-city neighbourhood plans.

“It is far exceeding the total what the regional strategy and the city’s overall plan indicates is necessary is for the inner city areas,” he said, pointing to a glut of unit complexes.

Associate Professor Heywood said over the past 15 years the role of developers in neighbourhood planning process has increased.

He said developers should become part of the process “after the draft neighbourhood planning” was completed.

“Developers absolutely have a key role in play in planning,” Associate Professor Heywood said.

“It is a dynamic and responsive one, but it is not the lobbying, fund contributing and plan-shaping one.”

However, Planning Institute of Australia state manager Matt Collins said best practice planning should maximise opportunities for a “diversity of voices”.

“Land-owners are an important stakeholder and should be included in engagement processes,” he said.

“In achieving best practice planning outcomes, the public interest is paramount, so it is vital that measures are in place to ensure that private commercial interests do not determine planning outcomes.”

Mr Collins said consultation should be “open, transparent, and accountable”.

“This should include clear processes to manage potential or perceived conflicts of interest amongst decision-makers,” he said.

Brisbane deputy mayor Krista Adams, the chairwoman of the council’s planning committee, said community forums did not make neighbourhood planning decisions.

Loading

Cr Adams said community planning teams were involved in the early stages of preparing and reviewing neighbourhood plans.

“The relevant local community is invited to nominate to be a member of a community planning team and this is a wide, open invite with no individual or addressed invitations issued,” she said.

“The final team members are selected by council’s neighbourhood planning team to ensure a diverse but manageable number of people to provide insights and feedback.”

Most Viewed in National

Loading

Thanks for seeing this news update on State and Federal News and updates published as “Pressure mounts on Brisbane City Council to reduce developer influence”. This news article was presented by My Local Pages Australia as part of our news aggregator services.

#Pressure #mounts #Brisbane #City #Council #reduce #developer #influence



Source link

Students at Brisbane’s new inner-city state schools from outside catchment zone despite enrolment pressure


Brisbane South State Secondary College this year opened with 203 foundation Year 7 students, but about 65 per cent of those are estimated to be from outside the school’s catchment zone, according to data obtained from the Education Department.

The proportion of out-of-catchment foundation Year 7 students at Fortitude Valley State Secondary College in 2020 was 55.5 per cent of 137 pupils, which reduced to 46.5 per cent this year as the school enrolled 301 Year 7 and 8 students.

When announcing the new inner-south high school would be built in 2017, Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said it would “take enrolment pressure off Brisbane State High School” and cater for growth.

Building the new Fortitude Valley State Secondary College was announced at the same time, with then Education Minister Kate Jones saying the Advancing Inner-City Schools initiative would help alleviate inner-city enrolment pressure.

The $140 million Dutton Park school is still under construction but will have capacity for more than 1,600 secondary students across Year 7–12 by 2026, while the $100 million Fortitude Valley campus is set to encompass 1,500 pupils across all high school year levels by 2025.

An Education Department spokesperson said the out-of-catchment numbers were not unexpected in a foundation year when both schools have “established, well-regarded high schools close by”.

Thank you for dropping by My Local Pages and seeing this story involving “What’s On in the City of Brisbane” called “Students at Brisbane’s new inner-city state schools from outside catchment zone despite enrolment pressure “. This post was posted by My Local Pages Australia as part of our Australian events & what’s on stories services.

#Students #Brisbanes #innercity #state #schools #catchment #zone #enrolment #pressure



Source link

Private bank stocks outlook: Top private sector banks likely to see more selling pressure going forward


If there is any kind of incremental pressure, which the markets would probably signal, one has to watch out for these three-four names because they could probably signal another round of cool off into the Bank Nifty, says the independent market expert Kunal Bothra.

Given that we are stepping into a very volatile expiry week, is your expectation that we are likely to see more chop and churn?
I will call it one of the better months for the markets. Yes, the last couple of days were a bit more choppy, especially on Friday where the indices were a bit volatile. However, the way the markets have rallied in February starting from the Budget day itself has been spectacular. When you see a 7,000-point rally on the Bank Nifty, a 1,700 to 1,800-point jump on the Nifty in just a matter of two-three weeks, there are bound to be some bit of corrections and aberrations.

What we saw on Friday and the second half of the previous week had more or less to do with the mean reversion process, which the markets were going through. What has also happened, after previous weeks’ price correction, the Nifty and the Bank Nifty both have formed some bearish candlestick patterns. Typically, when we see those bearish patterns, it has a follow through and a spill over. In that aspect, it is possible that the action on the indices could remain a bit muted.

The 15,000 level on the index remains to be a very crucial support zone. We managed to break below that on Friday and just about have a touch and go closing towards the 15,000-mark. Next week, this level could be an important level. If we break and sustain below the 15,000 level, then a follow through downside of 500 points on the Nifty could be a high probability.

What is it that you are spotting in this entire PSU trade? Do you think it is short-lived or does it seem like there is some base building up for a bigger move?
Whether it is the PSU banking pack or specific insurance stocks like GIC Housing, etc, or the gas distribution names; if you look at it, there is a specific news flow and a certain theme which has been attached towards these stocks. We have seen that the markets were in a risk-on mode and whenever the news flow comes out to be positive for a certain set of stocks or particular sector, we have seen the stocks in the sector going to a buzzing uptrend.

Now the bigger question is, once the news flow is digested by the market and once the events are out of play, how will the stocks react because traders who trade on the momentum are the ones who specifically look out for such kind of news flow and even try to trade these kinds of plays. But once the momentum is out, whether the trading interest will be there or not is the biggest question mark that could be in line for many of these stocks.

For example, in a classic sector like the Nifty IT and pharma, many of the stocks and the news flow had just about gone a bit low and you have seen the price action for these two sectors. They went into a gradual correction, a minor downtrend or cool off. I would sense that if the PSU banking pack and the PSU pack overall goes into a similar or very slow gradual downtrend when there is devoid of news flow, then I believe you can build in a classic case that these stocks are more on the upside. But if they go through a very sharp reversal, almost a V-shaped kind of reversal on the back of no news flow, then I believe that that could probably dent the trend for many of these PSU names.

I think over the next couple of days, the outlook could be far more clearer on whether this is just a gradual correction or the stocks have run up steeply high or whether there is a sharp correction in these names.

Sectorally or stock wise, what is the lead indicator for the markets to actually see some rebound from here?
What could probably be one of the indicators which could result in the markets stabilising? I think one of them is the balancing effect, which the sectors tend to give across every time when we see a round of correction. If you look at the last three weeks or four weeks of price action, there have been three-four key sectors– IT, pharma, FMCG and auto stocks–which have gone through a corrective phase.

When you look at these stocks, many of these stocks have fallen around 10%-15% and some of the high beta pockets in the sectors have been down 20%. Now whether there is a resumption of a bounce into this space or not, that could be the first round of stability, which the index would probably get from these names. If I am not wrong, on Friday also you saw some green shoots coming across TCS, Dr Reddy and Nestle and many of these stocks were bouncing back from the intraday lows in the fag end of the session. This typically happens when you go into a risk-off mode or into a defensive mode.

Which are the sectors which could probably continue to see some selling pressure? I still believe that if there is a lot of call writing and selling of derivatives that is more riskier in the private sector banking stocks. I believe that they could be more under pressure and especially the top two-three names. When you look at the composition of the derivatives data,

, ICICI Bank and and even are three-four names where you have seen a lot of high risk call writing. I think if there is any kind of incremental pressure, which the markets would probably signal, one has to watch out for these three-four names because they could probably signal another round of cool off into the Bank Nifty, which could also have an effect on the Nifty as well.

The general insurance space had a terrific rally. , for instance, also saw a strong move. What is your view on the charts?
Excellent chart. Frankly, the moment IDFC First Bank came out of that 50 band or 50 or 47.5-48 band in December end and January start, from there on, the texture of the stock has changed completely. Remember that it has given a breakout of almost three years of downward sloping trend lines. For the last three years, from 2017 or 2018, the stock was going into that pattern of lower highs and lower lows on the monthly charts. So for a stock to break past those monthly negative patterns, it requires a lot of firepower and a lot of volume and we saw that happening for IDFC First.

It remained sideways for almost a month. From December end, it was at sideways 50 plus or minus; Rs 2 or Rs 3 was the trading range for the index. So it managed to digest and absorb a lot of volatility, and tried to shake out even the weaker hands in between. But then the way in which the stock charged up, it is just an indication of how the trends could probably lie ahead for IDFC First Bank.

I believe that the stock over the next three to six months could be a candidate for Rs 75 to Rs 85 kind of a target range from the current levels. I think it is a classic candidate for a buy on dips. At Rs 60-62 levels, where the stock closed on Friday, if there is any kind of a dip towards Rs 55 levels or 5% to 10% dip on an average, that should be taken as a very good buying opportunity for the stock.



Thank you for visiting My Local Pages and checking this news update regarding India news titled "Private bank stocks outlook: Top private sector banks likely to see more selling pressure going forward". This news update was shared by MyLocalPages Australia as part of our Australian news services.

#Private #bank #stocks #outlook #Top #private #sector #banks #selling #pressure



Source link

Media editors used Pell reports to pressure judge, court told


Ms Kaye cited a sentence in The Daily Telegraph’s front-page article on December 13, 2018 as an example of the media’s attitude. The sentence read: “We believe there are strong grounds to fight the ban.”

The Courier-Mail’s front-page headline “Secret Scandal” also illustrated the strong language and the media’s attitude in the reports, she said.

The news outlets later applied to Judge Kidd to revoke the order, which would have enabled the media to publish Cardinal Pell’s name and charges. The order prevented the media from publishing any information derived from Cardinal Pell’s trial.

But Judge Kidd refused the application to revoke the order, which meant the media had to wait until February 2019 – when prosecutors aborted the cardinal’s planned second trial – before they could publish full details of the first trial.

The media’s penalties will be up to the discretion of Justice John Dixon but Ms Kaye called for significant fines and convictions given the seriousness of the breaches.

“The conduct was contumacious [wilfully disobedient]. There is no accidental publication in this case,” she said.

“It was considered and deliberate. There was no oversight or inadvertence.”

But lawyers for the media argued their clients’ breaches were at the low end of the spectrum and not in the same category as past contempt examples, such as Derryn Hinch, fined $100,000 for publishing on a blog Adrian Bayley’s past convictions while charged with murdering Jill Meagher or Yahoo7, which was fined $300,000 for reporting about a murder trial that included details not before the jury and led to the trial being aborted.

Will Houghton, QC, acting for News Corp publications, called for his clients to face lesser fines and in some cases be spared convictions.

Mr Houghton said there was no evidence senior editors tried to exert pressure on Judge Kidd, as there was never an intention to breach the suppression order.

Loading

“They thought, wrongly, your honour, they were not breaching the suppression order,” he told Justice Dixon.

Matt Collins, QC, acting for The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and other media, also rejected the prosecutor’s argument, which he said “was akin to an allegation of malice”.

Mr Houghton said the media had apologised, would pay the costs of the prosecution case and were prepared to appear before Judge Kidd to show their contrition.

“He deserves to hear it personally and we will do that,” he said.

Mr Houghton said his clients’ reports were measured in tone and content, that some online articles were only seen by a handful of readers before they were removed in the hours after Judge Kidd made clear his anger at the media reports, and called on Justice Dixon to consider the companies’ good corporate reputations.

Dr Collins will make more submissions on Wednesday.

Most Viewed in National

Loading

Thank you for stopping by and checking out this story regarding NSW and Australian news published as “Media editors used Pell reports to pressure judge, court told”. This article was shared by MyLocalPages as part of our news aggregator services.

#Media #editors #Pell #reports #pressure #judge #court #told



Source link

Keir Starmer Reportedly Under Pressure as Labour Doc Says UK Should Pay Reparations to Ex-Colonies



UK

Get short URL

The report, titled Remaking Of The British State: For The Many, Not The Few, comes just ahead of a constitutional commission recently announced by Sir Keir Starmer, by which his party is supposed to announce the changes it considers relevant.

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer has landed in hot water after a recently released party report suggested a Labour government should make “woke” payments to former British colonies and apologise “unreservedly” for the  negative repercussions of the former Empire, the Daily Mail reported.

“The British state should set up a reparations fund as part of the constitution, which offers financial assistance to communities across the world that can show loss and detriment as a result of the actions of the British state,” the report pointed out.

It also called for the abolition of trade union laws, which would lead to the return of flying pickets and general strikes, the disestablishment of the Church of England, as well as  the replacement of the House of Lords with ”the Senate of Nations and Regions”.

“Socialists should seek to reorder the British state and hardwire the constitution in favour of socialist objectives. This must be a central plank of the Labour Party’s vision to transform the UK,” the document went on.

Labour allies have since reportedly opted to distance themselves and Starmer from the proposals, attributing them to his predecessor, Jeremy Corbyn, among others.

“The last leadership were always getting reports like this written in order to keep their friends happy,” one of Starmer’s allies commented last night, adding, “fortunately, that’s not Labour’s approach any more.”

The 234-page paper called Remaking Of The British State: For The Many, Not The Few, precedes a UK-wide constitutional commission,  which Sir Keir has already announced. 

Separately, the Labour leader has also recently come under growing pressure from senior party figures and activists to hold Boris Johnson accountable for the adverse effects of his Brexit deal on UK businesses.

When Johnson announced the limited free-trade deal with the EU on 24 December, Starmer said in a statement that Labour would accept the deal to avoid any risk of a No Deal scenario. Yet, he insisted it was limited and flawed and that Labour would go to great lengths to expose its pitfalls.

In mid-January, British data analytics firm YouGov published the results of its fresh polls on the voting intentions of the British public. Central in the poll was the question “Who would make the best Prime Minister?”, to which 34 percent answered “Keir Starmer” and only 29 percent Boris Johnson. Around 34 percent of respondents couldn’t produce a clear answer to the question.



Thank you for dropping in to My Local Pages and checking this story regarding the latest Russian News items named “Keir Starmer Reportedly Under Pressure as Labour Doc Says UK Should Pay Reparations to Ex-Colonies”. This news update was brought to you by MyLocalPages Australia as part of our Australian news services.

#Keir #Starmer #Reportedly #Pressure #Labour #Doc #Pay #Reparations #ExColonies



Source link

Sofia Kenin admits to struggling with pressure as Australian Open title defence ends


An emotional Sofia Kenin says she “couldn’t really handle the pressure” of being defending Australian Open champion after making a second-round exit at Melbourne Park.

The fourth-seeded Kenin lost 6-3, 6-2 to Kaia Kanepi in just over an hour on Margaret Court Arena on Thursday afternoon.

She was outplayed by the unseeded Estonian, who slammed down 10 aces — including one on match point — to advance to the last 32 in her 12th Australian Open appearance.

Kenin is the highest seed across both the women’s and men’s draw to be eliminated from this year’s tournament.

Her loss also marks the earliest departure of a defending women’s champion since Jennifer Capriati exited the 2003 tournament in the first round.

Kenin could not hold back tears when she addressed her post-match media conference less than an hour after her loss to Kanepi.

She said she felt too much expectation playing in the Australian Open as the reigning champion.

“Obviously I haven’t experienced that [before],” she said.

“I obviously felt like I’m not there 100 per cent physically, mentally … everything just feels real off, obviously. It’s not good.

“Because like today and those matches, it just hasn’t been there.”

Kenin ‘way too nervous’

Kenin said she struggled to play her natural game and “her head wasn’t there”.

But the 22-year-old acknowledged Kanepi deserved her win.

“She obviously played well,” Kenin said.

“I obviously felt like I couldn’t find my rhythm, I was obviously way too nervous.

“She played really well. She came up with some good shots. She obviously had a good plan against me. I just couldn’t execute my shots.”

A cap-wearing tennis player holds a big trophy after winning her first Grand Slam title.
Kenin was not considered one of the favourites when she won the Australian Open last year.(AP: Lee Jin-man)

Kenin was the 14th seed when she stormed to her first major title just over 12 months ago at Melbourne Park.

She stunned world number one and local favourite Ash Barty in the semi-finals, before defeating two-time major winner Garbiñe Muguruza in the tournament decider.

Like every player on the WTA Tour, Kenin’s 2020 season was disrupted by the coronavirus pandemic, but she did reach the French Open final and achieved a career-high ranking of four in the world.

Kenin said it was easier to slip under the radar at last year’s Australian Open because she was not considered among the favourites to win the title.

“I just came here, I didn’t have really any expectations,” she said.

“I obviously wanted to do well. I knew I was playing well. I started having a good run and everything. It’s not like I was ranked 100 and all of a sudden, I won. I was … top 20 or something. I don’t even remember.

“I just didn’t put this much pressure on myself as this year. This year I put a lot of pressure [on myself]. I obviously felt like I was expected to do well.”

Thanks for dropping by and checking out this news update involving the latest national news items titled “Sofia Kenin admits to struggling with pressure as Australian Open title defence ends”. This news release is brought to you by My Local Pages as part of our local and national news services.

#Sofia #Kenin #admits #struggling #pressure #Australian #Open #title #defence #ends



Source link

Ontario spending ticks up by $2.6 billion amid ongoing pressure from pandemic


The expenses will be offset mainly with contingency funds, and the province says it has now ‘fully allocated’ its $13.3B in pandemic-related response and contingency funds

Article content

The Ontario government says the COVID-19 pandemic is further driving up its already record levels of spending, prompting the province to take new steps to ensure it has emergency funding at the ready.

Ontario’s finances for the quarter ended Dec. 31 show that expenses are now expected to rise an additional $2.6 billion compared to what was forecast in its November budget, bringing total costs to $189.7 billion for the year ending March 31. The hike is attributed mostly to spending on hospitals, long-term care homes and support for lockdown-affected businesses.

Those added expenses are to be offset primarily with contingency funds, and the province says it has now “fully allocated” the $13.3-billion in pandemic-related response and contingency funds it had set aside in its fall spending plan.

An additional $2.1 billion is being put into the province’s standard contingency fund in case it’s needed, increasing it to approximately $4 billion. Finance Minister Peter Bethlenfalvy said these funds were essentially being freed up by drawing on the province’s fiscal reserve, which has been reduced to $500 million for the relatively short time left in 2020-21 from the $2.5 billion allocated there in the fall budget.

Advertisement

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

“All of us know this level of spending is not sustainable in the long term,” Bethlenfalvy told reporters on Wednesday. “But defeating this virus, together, that is what’s most important right now.”

The finance minister’s comments come after the Ontario government took fire from opposition politicians claiming Progressive Conservative Premier Doug Ford was being stingy with spending during the pandemic. The Financial Accountability Office of Ontario had also said in December that, as of September’s end, the province had $12 billion in unallocated contingency funds.

But Bethlenfalvy said Wednesday that the provincial government is putting its contingencies to use.

Since the fall budget, $1.4 billion has been earmarked for a small-business support grant that would provide firms that have been locked down or face significant public-health restrictions with between $10,000 to $20,000 in financial help. Another $869 million has been set aside for hospitals, $609 million to help with the purchase of personal protective equipment and $398 million for the long-term care sector.

Ontario is still projecting it will run a record-setting $38.5-billion deficit for 2020-21, which is unchanged from its November budget forecast.

Advertisement

This advertisement has not loaded yet, but your article continues below.

Article content

However, the province’s long-term borrowing program for the 2020-21 fiscal year is now expected to be about $2.9 billion bigger, which includes $1.5 billion in “pre-borrowing” for next year. Total long-term borrowing for 2020-21 is forecast to be $55.2 billion, although interest on debt is anticipated to be unchanged from last year’s budget, at $12.5 billion.

Net debt is forecast to be approximately $399.5 billion, equal to 47.1 per cent of the province’s economic output, up only slightly from the fall budget.

Even so, Bethlenfalvy noted that much has happened since the province released its budget in November, including record-high numbers of new COVID-19 cases, a provincewide shutdown and the declaration of a second state of emergency.

Ontario’s third-quarter finances said that private-sector forecasters, on average, are now projecting the province’s real gross domestic product to have contracted by 5.9 per cent in 2020, better than the 6.5 per cent forecast in the fall budget. Yet for 2021, Ontario’s economy is now expected to expand by 4.5 per cent, weaker than the 4.9 per cent foreseen in the budget.

Another fiscal update is expected next month, when the province’s 2021 budget is set to be tabled.

“Stopping the spread of COVID-19 is not only necessary to protect our health, it is also the most sensible economic policy,” Bethlenfalvy said. “We will keep doing whatever it takes to protect the people of Ontario, using all our fiscal firepower to take us through this unprecedented crisis.”

In-depth reporting on the innovation economy from The Logic, brought to you in partnership with the Financial Post.

Comments

Postmedia is committed to maintaining a lively but civil forum for discussion and encourage all readers to share their views on our articles. Comments may take up to an hour for moderation before appearing on the site. We ask you to keep your comments relevant and respectful. We have enabled email notifications—you will now receive an email if you receive a reply to your comment, there is an update to a comment thread you follow or if a user you follow comments. Visit our Community Guidelines for more information and details on how to adjust your email settings.

Thanks for dropping by and checking out this news article about Canadian news named “Ontario spending ticks up by $2.6 billion amid ongoing pressure from pandemic”. This story was presented by My Local Pages Australia as part of our local news services.

#Ontario #spending #ticks #billion #ongoing #pressure #pandemic



Source link