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Thread: DR1 Daily News - Thursday, 8 November 2018

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    Default DR1 Daily News - Thursday, 8 November 2018

    DR1 Daily News next update on 12 November 2018
    President Danilo Medina returns from China
    JCE wants to postpone municipal preferential vote
    Inapa director calls for passing waters management bills
    Fish and seafood seasonal ban list
    Intrant has little to show for its more than 25 advisors
    Participación Ciudadana: Government officers do not declare their wealth
    Antonio Taveras Guzmán: Pension funds need to be better invested
    Marranzini against tax amnesty, wasteful spending and legalizing betting shops
    Adoexpo’s new export guide
    Dominicans buy more and more vehicles
    Duquesa arbitration to be heard at Uncitral tribunal
    San Francisco de Macoris murder case: 30 years to Marlon Martinez, 5 years to his mom
    US Coast Guard sends back 71 migrants on board illegal boat trips
    Onamet forecasts more rains
    New emerging comedians in DR



    DR1 Daily News next update on 12 November 2018
    The next DR1 Daily News update will be published on Monday, 12 November 2018. The Monday issue will compile headline news for the previous Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Breaking news can be followed 24/7 in the Forums. See the DR1 Forum at http://www.dr1.com


    President Danilo Medina returns from China
    President Danilo Medina returned late evening on Wednesday, 7 November 2018. He cut his China trip a day short after suffering from a cold and did not make stopovers at manufacturing plants in Shenzhen as originally was on his agenda. President Danilo Medina’s trip had begun on Wednesday, 31 October 2018. After participating in the China International Import Expo in Shanghai, he traveled to Hong Kong and from there to New York prior to returning.

    During his official state visit in Beijing where he met President Xi Jinping, Premier Li Keqiang, the president of the National Assembly Li Zhanshu, among others, he also participated in the opening of the Dominican Embassy in Beijing. The government announced the signing of 18 agreements and memorandums of understanding. The government mission announced that a US$600 million loan for the Dominican energy sector from China Export-Import Bank is in the works, as part of what the Medina administration understands are achievements of the new diplomatic ties with China.

    The Dominican delegation was the largest of those participating in the China International Import Expo from the Caribbean and Central America. Other regional leaders attending the Expo were President Juan Carlo Varela of Panama, Salvador Sanchez of El Salvador, and Miguel Diaz Canel of Cuba.

    http://hoy.com.do/presidente-medina-...china-popular/
    https://elnacional.com.do/danilo-reg...viaje-a-china/


    JCE wants to postpone municipal preferential vote
    The president of the Central Electoral Board, Julio César Castaños Guzmán said on Wednesday, 7 November 2018, that the preferential vote at the municipal level should be eliminated for the elections of 2020 or at least postponed for 2024. The official said that it is an administrative challenge to organize elections with a preferential vote at the municipal level, but not in the congressional sphere. The preferential vote inclusion had been approved in 2013. Castaños Guzmán said he has had conversations with legislators on the matter.

    Spokesmen for the PRM, the largest opposition political party, and the PRSC are against the postponement. An editorial in Diario Libre agreed with the postponement arguing that the government already had enough on its hands with the implementation of the new Political Parties Bill.

    Castaños spoke when participating in the opening of the XIII Inter-American Meeting of Electoral Authorities in Santo Domingo. The event was presided by Vice President Margarita Cedeño, in her role as Acting President. The meeting is taking place 7-9 November. Representatives of 29 electoral bodies in 22 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean are meeting in Santo Domingo to discuss the challenges in their electoral systems and their role in the elections.

    https://listindiario.com/la-republic...-de-cabeza-jce
    https://www.diariolibre.com/opinion/...tez-PG11245219
    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...ate-DB11237848


    Inapa director calls for passing waters management bills
    Engineer Horacio Mazara, executive director of the National Institute of Potable Water and Sewage (Inapa), says data shows 25% of the Dominican population does not have access to piped water. He urged Congress to approve the Waters Bill that is being analyzed in the legislature saying it would provide a regulatory framework to reduce wasteful use of water and theft. He also said the bill would enable the government to implement tariffs so the service can be sustainable.

    Inapa manages 315 aqueducts nationwide, for 80% of the national coverage. He said the lack of a legal framework affects positive actions by the authorities to ensure water can reach more customers. Mazara spoke during the Weekly Luncheon of Multimedios del Caribe.

    “For example, if you have a farm and install a water pipeline sourcing from a river, I cannot bring charges against you,” he said. He said this is in contrast to the existing regulations allow the Ministry of Environment to take action against individuals or companies that extract aggregates from rivers without authorization.

    Mazara says that a study shows that around 35% of the potable water provided by the Northwest Aqueduct is used to irrigate commercial farms. He said the farm owners source the water for free. Moreover, he said that unregulated connections to pipelines are also common. He said that this unauthorized extraction of water from aqueducts often times contaminates the potable water. He said Inapa works diligently to improve the potability indexes.

    Mazara notes that the potable water bills have been languishing in the legislature for years. He expressed his hope that sooner, rather than later legislation will be approved by Congress during the legislative session that ends in February 2018.

    Mazara said the principal objective of the the General Waters Bill is to provide over-arching governmental oversight for the use of untreated water for farms and power generation. The legislation assigns the Ministry of Environment to supervise the policies and practices for this type of water use. On the other hand, the Sectorial Waters Bill establishes the norms for the use of treated and potable water for human consumption and would be overseen by the Ministry of Public Health and a Superintendence of Waters under Inapa supervision. He said that legislators understand and appreciate the importance of both bills and there are legislative special committees working on these issues.

    Mazara likewise advocated for the construction of three dams for the storage of potable water at the Chavon, Soco and Sanate rivers in the East. He also said that the province of La Altagracia has a potable water demand of 1.2 cubic meters per second while the aqueduct is only serving 500 liters per second. He said there is a part of Sanate that suffers periods of drought and serves less.

    Moreover, he said Inapa has presented to the Presidency a project for the construction of an aqueduct and sewage in Punta Cana where there is overexploitation of ground water and saline intromission. Mazara spoke of the current uncontrolled and unregulated use of groundwater is replete with serious consequences as problems of overdraft of aquifers and salt-water intrusion have emerged in many areas in La Altagracia.

    He also mentioned the construction of aqueducts for Ocoa, Sabana Larga, Los Patos in Oviedo, Pedernales and others. Mazara spoke of the salt water barrier project that would impact eight border provinces and their 15 municipalities and that contemplates the construction of 11 new sanitary systems. He described this as an important project in a very vulnerable area in terms of health issues given the proximity to Haiti. This project would be carried out with British cooperation.

    https://www.elcaribe.com.do/2018/11/...potable-en-rd/


    Fish and seafood seasonal ban list
    The Consejo Dominicano de Pesca y Acuicultura (Codopesca) and other local and international bodies reported on the seasonal calendar for the consumption of fish and seafood. Thirteen of the species are planned from 1 July 2017 to 30 June 2019. Consumption and capture of the black urchin is banned through 30 June 2022. Shark and stingray are in permanent capture ban.

    Other aquatic varieties subject to seasonal bans are conch, several species of lobster, crabs and eels.

    The executive director of Codopesca, Milton Ginebra, said that the bans are established in order to allow for the reproduction of the species. He urged that fishermen, vendors and consumers respect the ban. Ginebra reminded the public that the law establishes fines from 10 to 200 minimum wages and sending to justice of those who incur in violations.

    He spoke during an activity organized as part of the Caribbean marine biodiversity conservation program developed by the US Agency for International Development (USAID), the Nature Conservancy among other entities.

    https://listindiario.com/economia/20...ueden-consumir
    http://www.codopesca.gob.do/noticias...eda-lambi-2018


    Intrant has little to show for its more than 25 advisors
    The National Institute for Traffic and Ground Transport (Intrant) has a payroll of 22 local advisors for RD$1.4 million every month. This does not include foreign advisors, including a Spaniard and three Frenchmen who a source told El Nacional are paid in hard currency in addition to the local advisors.

    A year and 10 months after Traffic Law 63-17 went into effect, the government has yet to implement the rulings to reduce traffic congestion and noise pollution on city streets. Likewise, El Nacional reports that several regional and provincial directors are on the payroll but are not on their appointed jobs. Intrant reportedly has 1,047 employees on its RD$25.4 million a month payroll. An additional 61 military are affiliated to the traffic division for a total RD$27.7 million a month in payroll.

    The salary of the director of Intrant, Claudia Franchesca de los Santos, is RD$250,000. Her assistant is paid RD$100,000.

    https://elnacional.com.do/intrant-ti...1-4-mm-al-mes/


    Participación Ciudadana: Government officers do not declare their wealth
    Almost 4,000 government officers have yet to present their wealth statements as required by law. In most cases, the presentation is two years due. A report presented by the Chamber of Accounts of the government indicates that legislators, aldermen, and city mayors are among the delinquent officers.

    Participación Ciudadana civic watch group highlighted that the president of the Chamber of Deputies, Radhames Camacho is on the list, together with other 66 legislators. El Dia highlights the number of officers is at 3,784.

    Participacion Ciudadana says the law establishes those who do not present their statements can be fired.

    Diario Libre editorial says that it seems that politics rules to tell by the lenience in the enforcement of the law.

    http://eldia.com.do/no-han-presentad...-funcionarios/
    http://eldia.com.do/asi-no-se-vale-2/
    https://www.diariolibre.com/opinion/...das-HG11243004


    Antonio Taveras Guzmán: Pension funds need to be better invested
    The president of the National Association of Herrera Industries (ANEIH) Antonio Taveras Guzmán urged changes be made in the national pension plan system. As reported in Diario Libre, he argued that the present system means those retiring will be receiving around 30% of their present wages. He said this would not be enough to guarantee their health and nutritional needs in their retirement years. He urged that the pension funds deposited in the banking system be invested in competitive productive areas where they can receive higher yields. Most of the pension plans are deposited in the Central Bank.
    https://www.eldinero.com.do/71964/si...s-dominicanos/


    Marranzini against tax amnesty, wasteful spending and legalizing betting shops
    Former president of the National Business Council, Celso Marranzini alerted that the next proposed assets regularization tax exemption scheme would only serve to launder capitals that have been illegally obtained. He said what is needed instead is a true fiscal reform and the reduction of the size of the government. He said this is the only way to balance government spending.

    Likewise, Marranzini is backing a proposal to turn the entire country into a free zone. But he says this will require less public spending, which he says no government will accept.

    As reported in Diario Libre, Marranzini said that it is impossible to balance the budget with wasteful spending at the expense of investments in health, education and housing. Marranzini spoke during an event to celebrate the 56th anniversary of the Confederacion Autonoma Sindical Clasista (CASC), a labor union.

    Marranzini criticized the government has included provisions in the 2019 National Budget that would legalize betting shops. “I hope that in the 2020 National Budget the government does not order to legalize the drug sales points in order to generate more revenues for the budget,” he observed with sarcasm.


    Adoexpo’s new export guide
    The Dominican Exporters Association (Adoexpo) has just published the “Guía de Exportación: Súmate a la Cultura Exportadora,” an exporters guide that seeks to motivate more to export. The guide looks into procedures, plans, free trade agreements, market access and more guidelines for those interested in exporting.

    Odile Miniño Bogaert, executive vice president of Adoexpo, made the presentation of the guide last week. She was accompanied by Adoexpo president, Luis Concepción. Also present were Deputy Minister of Industry & Commerce Yahaira Sosa and Ignacio Méndez; the director of the Center for Export and Investment (CEI-RD) Marius de León, the director of Proindustria Alma Fernández, among others.

    The guide is available at the offices of Adoexpo at Calle Virgilio Díaz Ordoñez No. 52, Ensanche Julieta and online at https://adoexpo.org/es/noticias/lanz...portadora.html


    Dominicans buy more and more vehicles
    Dominicans have traded the inconveniences of mass transport for the inconveniences of private cars that are adding to the problem of traffic congestion. Diario Libre reports that vehicle sales in the country have topped RD$534.5 billion since 2015. The DGII reports vehicle sales of RD$152.9 billion in 2017 alone. Over the years, the government-owned Banco de Reservas has spearheaded a festival of low interest car loans that have motivated many Dominicans to buy a car, or two and three in the hope of getting around. Other banks have followed. Today it is easy to get a car loan, not so a loan for manufacturing or other productive activities.

    Diario Libre reports that the number of vehicles in circulation has increased from 3,612,964 units in 2015 to 4,097,338 to August 2018, according to data from the Tax Agency (DGII). Vehicle sales in 2015 were RD$130.4 billion. These increased to RD$147.5 billion in 2016 and RD$152.9 billion in 2017. As of August 2018, vehicle sales had reached RD$103.7 billion, foreboding another record year in vehicle sales.

    https://www.diariolibre.com/economia...015-CI11197612


    Duquesa arbitration to be heard at Uncitral tribunal
    A United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) tribunal has begun hearing a Jamaican billionaire’s US$300 million treaty claim against the Dominican Republic concerning the seizure of a landfill site.

    On 19 December 2017, Jamaican national Michael Lee-Chin served the Dominican Republic government with a notice of intent to arbitrate under the Caribbean Community-Dominican Republic Free Trade Agreement (CARICOM-DR FTA) over alleged treaty breaches concerning the management concession agreement for the Duquesa landfill in northern Santo Domingo, the main dump for garbage from a population of around 3 million people that live in Greater Santo Domingo.

    Lee-Chin claims that the Dominican Republic expropriated his investment in Duquesa, because the Municipality failed to abide by the concession agreement and apply the biannual increases to the tipping fees chargeable to the users for the disposal of the waste and the energy generated by the plant, and, ultimately, because on 27 September 2017 the High Administrative Court (TSA) divested Lajún Corporation from the management of the Duquesa landfill, pending the decision on the breach of the concession agreement.

    On the other hand, the Santo Domingo North Municipality asserts that Lajún Corporation was not fulfilling its obligations under the concession agreement, causing environmental harms and jeopardizing the public health of the community living in Greater Santo Domingo. That is why the City Council of Santo Domingo North authorized Mayor René Polanco, to take Lajún Corporation to the High Administrative Court to terminate the agreement for noncomplying with it.

    The Ministry of Environment of the Dominican Republic also intervened in the case.

    The case also involves Dominican businessman Luis Jose Asilis, representative of Wilkison Company that has 25% of the shares of the landfill.

    http://arbitrationblog.kluwerarbitra...r/?print=print
    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...lis-BN10598955
    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...ales-KE8152491


    San Francisco de Macoris murder case: 30 years to Marlon Martinez, 5 years to his mom
    The Second Collegiate Tribunal of San Francisco de Macorís sentenced 21-year old Marlon Martínez to 30 years in jail and his mother Marlin to five years in jail for the death of 16-year old Emely Peguero in August 2017. Judges Maria de los Ángeles Concepción, Víctor Inoa and Carminia Caminero ruled that Marlon was guilty of voluntary homicide, act of barbarism and child abduction. He was ordered to serve his sentence at the Fortaleza Juana Núñez in Salcedo. Peguero was pregnant of the child of Marlon Martínez.

    The judges ruled that his mother, Marlin Martínez was guilty of child abduction and of hiding the corpse. The judges said the prosecution did not present evidence of the complicity of Marlin in the murder only of her actions after the event.

    The Marlon and Marlin Martinez were ordered to pay the family compensation for RD$10 million each.

    The judges argued the prosecutors did not demonstrate that Marlin had acted in complicity prior to the murder, only that she had acted after her son informed her of the murder. Marlin Martinez’s defense highlighted that she was in Santo Domingo on the day of the murder. At the time of the murder, Marlin Martinez was deputy head of the Dominican Passport Agency.

    After the ruling was known, there were protests in San Francisco de Macorís. Many rejected the light sentence Marlin Martínez had received.

    The case now moves to the Court of Appeals of San Francisco. Attorney General Jean Alain Rodriguez says the Marlin Martinez sentence will be appealed. “We will not appeal on a whim, we will not appeal for sport, we will appeal because we have the right to appeal and because we feel outraged as well as the population that the judges granted the category of concealment of the corpse and not complicity," he said commenting on the ruling.

    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...a-5-GB11236101
    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...rte-IG11244815
    https://listindiario.com/la-republic...arlin-martinez
    https://www.diariolibre.com/actualid...nez-MB11236930
    http://hoy.com.do/caso-emely-peguero...-los-acusados/
    https://www.diariolibre.com/opinion/...llo-IG11240888


    US Coast Guard sends back 71 migrants on board illegal boat trips
    The US Coast Guard announced it has returned 71 of 81 interdicted migrants to Dominican law enforcement authorities following multiple at sea interdictions off Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic. Ten other migrants interdicted are facing federal prosecution in Puerto Rico for attempting to illegally re-enter a U.S territory.

    The interdictions were a result of ongoing efforts in support of Operation Unified Resolve, Operation Caribbean Guard and the Caribbean Border Interagency Group (CBIG). The patrols from 31 October to 2 November, detected “three grossly overloaded, makeshift boats in international waters traveling illegally toward Puerto Rico.”

    https://content.govdelivery.com/acco...letins/219b5e1


    Onamet forecasts more rains
    The National Metereological Office (Onamet) forecasts rains from Wednesday in the northeast, southeast, Cibao Valley and Greater Santo Domingo. He said these conditions are the result of the incidence of a trough in almost all levels of the troposphere and the east-northeastern wind flow that generates a tropical wave in the southeast of the country.

    Onamet also reported pleasantly cool temperatures in the early morning, especially in mountain areas. Onamet says that temperatures will drop to 21-22 degrees.

    https://www.elcaribe.com.do/2018/11/...ceros-locales/


    New emerging comedians in DR
    Stand-up comedy in the Dominican Republic is alive and well. A report in Listin Diario says that while Carlos Sanchez around 15 years ago pioneered stand-up comedy here, today he has inspired many new emerging comedians. These comedians are taking advantage of social media to spread their laughs. And they have their own Comedy Club, a National District location where patrons can be ensured of an evening of laughs. The comedians each have their unique style. Many use irony, tell of day-to-day occurrences, use black humor, make fun of government, society, culture, values, customs and even of themselves.

    Listin Diario mentions emerging comedians José Delgado (Yodel), Starlin Ramírez, Miguel de la Cruz, David (Melaza) and Elías Serrulle as part of the new generation of comedians that perform live for audience.

    Comedy Club is located on the first floor of Plaza Bolera on Av. Abraham Lincoln.

    https://listindiario.com/entretenimi...tand-up-comedy

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    Fish and seafood seasonal ban list

    -why bother reporting this if you're not actually including an actual list of the banned and seasonal fish? Neither one of the links has this information!

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    Lobster and crab: 1 March – 30 June
    Conch (lambí): 1 July - 31 October

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