Merchants Bancshares Inc Declares Dividend, Election of Danaher as New Bank DirectorSOUTH BURLINGTON, VT-Merchants Bancshares, Inc. (NASDAQ: MBVT), the parent company of Merchants Bank, has announced that its Board of Directors declared a dividend of 28 cents per share, payable August 21, 2008, to shareholders of record as of August 7, 2008. Merchants plans to release earnings on or about July 30, 2008.Mr. Michael Tuttle, Merchants’ President and Chief Executive Officer; and Ms. Janet Spitler, Merchants’ Chief Financial Officer, will host a conference call to discuss these earnings results at 9:30 a.m. Eastern Time on Friday, August 1, 2008. Interested parties may participate in the conference call by dialing (888) 428-4480; the title of the call is Earnings Release Conference Call for Merchants Bancshares, Inc. Participants are asked to call a few minutes prior to register. A replay will be available until noon on Friday, August 8, 2008. The U.S. replay dial-in telephone number is (800) 475-6701. The international replay telephone number is (320) 365-3844. The replay access code for both replay telephone numbers is 902417.Merchants also announced today the election, effective August 21, 2008, of the newest member of Merchants Bank’s Board of Directors, Karen Danaher, CPA, PFS of Danaher, Attig & Plante PLC, a South Burlington-based accounting firm.Vermont Matters! The continuing mission of Merchants Bank is to provide Vermonters with a state-wide community bank that blends a strong technology platform with a genuine appreciation for local markets. Merchants Bank fulfills this commitment through a branch-based system that includes 36 community bank offices and 44 ATMs throughout Vermont, Personal Bankers dedicated to top-quality customer service and streamlined solutions, including: Personal Checking and Savings with Free Checking for Life(r), CashRewards CheckingSM, a low-cost Money Market Account, Free Online Banking and Bill Pay, Overdraft Coverage, Direct Deposit, Free Debit Card and Free Automated Phone Banking; Business Banking with Rewards Checking for Business, Business Online Banking and Bill Pay, Business Lines of Credit and Merchant Card Processing; Small Business Loans; Health Savings Accounts; Credit Cards; Flexible Certificates of Deposit; Vehicle Loans; Home Equity Credit; and Home Mortgages. Visit mbvt.com for more information. Merchants’ stock is traded on the NASDAQ National Market system under the symbol MBVT. Member FDIC. Equal Housing Lender.Some of the statements contained in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements relate to expectations, beliefs, projections, future plans and strategies, anticipated events or trends and similar expressions concerning matters that are not historical facts. The forward-looking statements reflect Merchants’ current views about future events and are subject to risks, uncertainties, assumptions and changes in circumstances that may cause Merchants’ actual results to differ significantly from those expressed in any forward-looking statement. Forward-looking statements should not be relied on since they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that are, in some cases, beyond Merchants’ control and which could materially affect actual results. The factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations include changes in general economic conditions in Vermont, changes in interest rates, changes in competitive product and pricing pressures among financial institutions within Merchants’ markets, and changes in the financial condition of Merchants’ borrowers. The forward-looking statements contained herein represent Merchants’ judgment as of the date of this release, and Merchants cautions readers not to place undue reliance on such statements. For further information, please refer to Merchants’ reports filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.###
Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says that tourism has the potential to accelerate growth and reduce poverty in countries across the globe. Story Highlights “It can also help to promote social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction, resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change, cultural values, diversity and heritage, mutual understanding, peace and security,” he added, while participating in a World Tourism Think Tank in Costa Navarino, Greece, recently. Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, says that tourism has the potential to accelerate growth and reduce poverty in countries across the globe.“An expanded tourism sector with a high degree of economic integration can produce positive and spillover effects that can help to promote inclusive and sustainable economic growth,” he said.“It can also help to promote social inclusiveness, employment and poverty reduction, resource efficiency, environmental protection and climate change, cultural values, diversity and heritage, mutual understanding, peace and security,” he added, while participating in a World Tourism Think Tank in Costa Navarino, Greece, recently.Minister Bartlett pointed out that tourism remains one of Jamaica’s few labour-intensive sectors, directly employing over 106,000 persons, while generating indirect jobs for another 250,000 individuals in linked sectors such as agriculture, the creative and cultural industries, entertainment, manufacturing, transportation, finance and insurance, electricity and water, construction and other services.“Direct contribution of tourism to our gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated at 8.4 per cent, while total contribution is estimated at a 27.2 per cent of GDP. Tourism is also the single most important generator of foreign exchange for the Jamaican economy,” he noted.Mr. Bartlett pointed out that the tourism industry in many developing and least developed countries (LDCs) has become the most viable and sustainable option for economic development, and in some countries the main source of foreign exchange earnings.According to the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) in 2014, LDCs received US$16.4 billion in exports from international tourism, up from US$2.6 billion in 2000, making the sector an important pillar of their economies and helping some to graduate from the LDC status.Tourism is also labour-intensive and supports a diverse and versatile labour market.Minister Bartlett argued that development and execution of sustainable growth strategies must incorporate broad-based input from a wide range of stakeholders in order to build consensus.He noted that visionary leaders in Government, industry and civil society must collaborate in order to create the needed infrastructures to overcome growth and competitiveness barriers.“We have to be strategic and smart in our approach. The global tourism pie is huge. It has maintained a level of profitability and dependability like no other industry and has been the main breadwinner for many countries. We must continue to build on our collective resources and be cognisant at all times that through partnerships and collaborations; we can all succeed in realising our dreams,” he added. “Direct contribution of tourism to our gross domestic product (GDP) is estimated at 8.4 per cent, while total contribution is estimated at a 27.2 per cent of GDP. Tourism is also the single most important generator of foreign exchange for the Jamaican economy,” he noted.
By Kenneth Jackson APTN National News The guy who criticizes the federal government on its prisons, particularly the treatment of Aboriginal offenders, says he expects to be re-appointed as the Correctional Investigator but for a shorter term.As of Tuesday afternoon, Howard Sapers was still waiting for confirmation from the Harper government.Sapers’ five-year term runs out at day’s end.“I’m waiting to hear,” said Sapers. “I know a ministerial recommendation has been made and I know that recommendation is being considered.”Public Safety Minister Steven Blaney has made the recommendation said Sapers, adding it requires some paperwork to be completed before it can be made final.The legislation allows for terms of up to five years, however Sapers said he doesn’t think he’ll get that long.“I suspect it to be for much less than the five years,” he said. “There’s been discussions ongoing for the last six months regarding the question of my re-appointment.”He wouldn’t say why he believes that.Because Blaney has made the recommendation, the office will have the legal authority to continue until a final decision has been announced said Sapers.APTN asked Blaney’s office to confirm the recommendation, and whether it’s for a shorter term, but has yet to receive a response.Sapers’ reports on Canada’s prisons have been critical since he joined the office 11 years ago.In 2013, his office reported the number of Aboriginal peoples in prisons increased by nearly 50 per cent in the last 10 years, yet during the same period, the amount of Caucasian inmates dropped.Sapers’ found Aboriginal peoples represent a “staggering” 23 per cent of federal inmates but make up just 4.3 per cent of the total Canadian population.“These are disturbing trends that raise important questions about equality and our justice system in Canada” Sapers said in a press release.He also found that one-in-three women in federal prisons are Aboriginal.This trend is something that he still considers a “major” file in his office.“One of our major ongoing files has to do with the gaps and outcomes between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal offenders and to try to narrow that gap through appropriate programming,” he firstname.lastname@example.org@afixedaddress