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Aer Lingus has received backing from shareholders to inject €150m into a new defined contribution (DC) fund, signalling an end to a protracted dispute over the €715m deficit in the Irish Airlines Superannuation Scheme (IASS).The airline, which convened this week’s extraordinary general meeting to approve the recommendations of a government-backed expert panel, saw an overwhelming majority of shareholders approve the deal.In June, the expert panel said IASS sponsors – Aer Lingus and the Dublin Airport Authority – should put aside more than €200m to address the needs of active members who would suffer benefits cuts if the defined benefit fund wound up.If the scheme were to wind up under the current priority order, which no longer grants pensions in payment absolute priority, the fund’s deficit would fall to €197m. The airline has agreed to inject €147m into a new DC arrangement for IASS members, as it is barred from making deficit reduction payments to the fund.In its third-quarter results, Aer Lingus noted that once shareholders had signed off on the deal, the Pensions Authority would need to approve the Section 50 benefits cuts put forward in the IASS funding proposal.It is unclear if the Authority will approve the Section 50 request before the end of the year, as the airline had hoped the restructuring would be complete by 1 January 2015.Aer Lingus could not be reached for comment.
Then in Twickenham Scotland meet Australia in the last of the quarter-finals at 4pmWe now know who will contest one of the semi-finals at the World Cup.Yesterday South Africa ended Wales’ hopes with a 23-19 victory at Twickenham.They’ll meet New Zealand, who eased past France 62-13 at the Millennium Stadium. As he was asked to during last week’s defeat of France, Ian Madigan steps into the out-half role. Jamie Heaslip captains the side in the absence of the injured Paul O’Connell, but the number-8 says the Toulon-bound second row still has a big role to play. Kick-off at Cardiff’s Millennium Stadium is at 1.
The Black Satellites will depart for Morocco on Wednesday for the 2nd leg of the final qualifier of the 2013 Africa Youth Championship decider in Rabat scheduled for this Friday.The Under-20 team hold a 4-1 advantage over the Atlas Cubs from the first leg played at the Tamale Stadium two weeks ago.Satellites squad for Morocco:Goalkeepers: Muntari Tagoe, Felix AnnanDefenders: Richmond Nketiah, Jeremiah Ankorful, Lawrence Lartey, Ahmed Adams, SmallBoy Korbah, Seidu SalifuMidfielders: Joseph Mensah, Derrick Mensah, Prince Baffoe, Emmanuel Gyamfi, Jacob Appau, Frank Sarfo Gyamfi, Michael Anaba, Moses OdjerStrikers: Francis Narh, Benjamin Fadi
Nearly 70 percent of the state’s nursing homes are set to receive rapid test kits from the federal government in the coming weeks, after being identified as having increased risks for coronavirus infections.The Trump administration announced last month that it would be sending “point of care” COVID-19 test kits to nursing homes in hotspots.In addition, facilities the federal government considers to be at an elevated risk for outbreaks will also receive them.The government has included 24 Florida counties on its list of coronavirus hotspots. In addition, 471 of the 693 nursing homes in the state are included on the test-kit distribution list.“We estimate based on what we have seen, there will probably be over 400 facilities out of our 700 nursing homes that will receive those point of care devices,” state Agency for Health Care Administration Secretary Mary Mayhew said Thursday during a statewide phone call with health-care providers. “But they have not all yet all received those devices.”State Department of Health Secretary Scott Rivkees says he had a call with representatives from the Quidel Corp., which is manufacturing the test kits.He calls the point of care tests “highly sensitive,” although he adds they are not meant for everyone.Rivkees goes on to say the tests should be administered to symptomatic people and only those whose symptoms developed within the previous five days.“When used within that five-day period, if somebody is symptomatic, if they test negative, you don’t have to do a follow up,” Rivkees said, adding that the “sensitivity is excellent.”The move comes as Florida officials are considering whether to end a temporary ban on visitors at nursing homes that has been in place since March. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced on July 14 that it planned to distribute diagnostic test instruments and tests to 2,000 facilities, also focusing on nursing homes in coronavirus hotspots and facilities determined to have an elevated risk of COVID-19 outbreaks.Soon thereafter, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Administrator Seema Verma announced that the Trump administration wants to require weekly testing of nursing home staff members and “visitors” in states that have a minimum 5 percent COVID-19 positivity rate.She said that after the weekly testing, the administration would recommend that visitations resume, as long as facilities are free of the virus for two weeks.However, such a testing mandate would have to be implemented through rule, which could take several months.Gov. Ron DeSantis has questioned whether weekly testing is necessary.Meanwhile, Florida has required that nursing homes and assisted living facilities test their staff members twice a month.The state has a contract with Curative to provide the testing kits. The long-term care providers receive the results within 24 hours, according to the governor.Florida’s 24 hotspot counties are Baker, Broward, Clay, Duval, Flagler, Hardee, Hernando, Hillsborough, Lake, Martin, Miami-Dade, Monroe, Nassau, Orange, Osceola, Palm Beach, Pasco, Pinellas, Polk, Seminole, St. Johns, St. Lucie, Sumter, and Volusia.