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  • Late planted corn considerations as harvest nears

    first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Because of the extended planting window that the 2017 Spring forced on farmers, some corn is just about ready to go and some corn has quite a ways to go. What are some causes for concern when it comes to the later planted fields. Brodbeck Seeds Regional Agronomist Denny Wickham has some insights.last_img

  • AFBF sets 2019 policy

    first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Farmer and rancher delegates to the American Farm Bureau Federation’s 100th Annual Convention adopted policies to guide the organization’s work during its centennial year on key topics such as farm bill implementation, cell-cultured food products, trade, rural broadband access and rural mental health programs.“As our organization has done for the last 100 years, grassroots delegates from across the nation came together to express a unified voice on issues vital to the success of our farms, ranches and rural communities,” said Zippy Duvall, American Farm Bureau Federation president . “It was fitting to have President Trump and numerous members of Congress among our attendees as we kicked off our centennial celebration. We continue to face a challenging farm economy and we stand ready to work with Congress and the Trump administration to address the issues important to our farm and ranch families.”Government shutdown Delegates urged the administration and Congress to work together to end the government shutdown as soon as possible. The current shutdown means farmers and ranchers are being delayed in securing loans and crop insurance as well as disaster and trade assistance. The impasse has also delayed implementation of important provisions of the farm bill.Trade Delegates voted to favor negotiations to resolve trade disputes, rather than the use of tariffs or withdrawal from agreements. They also voted to support the United States’ entry into the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership.Cell-based food Delegates adopted a comprehensive policy to support innovation in cell-based food products while ensuring a level playing field for traditional protein. Delegates affirmed that the Agriculture Department is best equipped to be the primary regulator of new cell-based products as it encouraged USDA to utilize the Food and Drug Administration’s expertise in food safety. The policy also calls for complete and accurate product labels to ensure that consumers have all the pertinent information they need.Rural broadband Delegates supported improved broadband coverage maps through better data and third-party provider verification. AFBF will work with the Federal Communications Commission to address map inaccuracies.Substance abuse and mental health Delegates supported increased funding for programs and facilities for the treatment of substance abuse and mental health issues. Delegates also voted to support funding for the Farm and Ranch Assistance Network, which was included in the 2018 farm bill. AFBF will urge appropriations committees to fund this program, which is critical to address the mental health issues faced by many farmers, ranchers and other rural Americans.last_img read more

  • New Google News is More Personal and Spontaneous

    first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market A new “sharing button” is being added to each story to enable easy sharing via Buzz, Reader, Facebook or Twitter, and presumably to mine more data to better personalize the “News for You” section.News is a key part of Google’s ongoing strategy. Recently, rumor circulated that Google approaching news outlets about a micropayment system for content. In May, Atlantic Monthly ran an extensive article by James Fallows on Google’s ambitions towards saving the news industry. The new “News for you” section is an enhanced version of the old “Recommended” section, giving readers the ability to rank both topics and sources up and down, and add additional topics to their news stream. By allowing users to exclude topics and sources they don’t want to read about, they’re free to create personal “info bubbles” of their own design. klint finley Related Posts Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Google News today announced it is rolling out a new layout with new features designed to bring readers a more personalized, local and social news experience. While still highlighting top stories and adding a list of trending topics similar to Twitter‘s, Google is now giving the reader additional customization options and adding a section for local news and weather, among other features. As Megan Garber at The Neiman Journalism Lab puts it: “The new site is trying to balance two major, and often conflicting, goals of news consumption: personalization and serendipity.” Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Tags:#Google#news#Real-Time Web#web In order to keep readers abreast of the world outside their custom bubble, Google has added the “trending topics” section (something that’s been showing up in the wild since February) and is keeping the “Top Stories” section at the top of the center column. Google is also giving its “Spotlight” section, dedicated to in-depth stories and longer lasting stories, a more prominent spot on the right column.Local news and weather features are being added to the right column, rounding out the personalization of service.last_img read more

  • A New Way to Duct HRVs

    first_imgUPDATED June 27, 2013 with an author’s postscriptNine years ago, I co-authored a Journal of Light Construction article with David Hansen on HRV installation. The article noted, “Stale air is exhausted from bathrooms, the laundry, and the kitchen. (An HRV is not intended to handle grease or smoke, so a range hood should be separately exhausted to the exterior.) Fresh air is supplied to the bedrooms, living room, and other living areas.” This advice is consistent with the long-standing recommendations of most HRV manufacturers.The advice is logical: after all, it makes sense to exhaust air from the smelliest rooms in the home and to supply the fresh air to the rooms where people spend most of their indoor hours.Although this traditional ventilation duct layout works well, I’ve begun to rethink the issue lately. It may be time to experiment with different ducting methods for HRV systems — especially for homes with single-point heating systems.There is a strong trend among designers of superinsulated houses to use ductless minisplit systems for space heating and cooling. These systems can work well even when outdoor temperatures drop to -17°F or -20°F. Moreover, the systems are inexpensive, easy to install, and very energy efficient.What type of ventilation system is best in such a home? Since there is no heating or cooling ductwork, a central-fan-integrated supply ventilation system is obviously out. The usual choices: either an exhaust-only system (for example, a bath exhaust fan that runs for much of the day) or a heat-recovery ventilator (HRV) with dedicated ventilation ductwork. (Throughout this article, I’ll use the term “HRV” to include energy-recovery ventilators as well as heat-recovery ventilators.)As more HVAC engineers and builders wrestle with the details of designing a house with a single-point heat source (for example, a… Start Free Trial Already a member? Log in Sign up for a free trial and get instant access to this article as well as GBA’s complete library of premium articles and construction details.center_img This article is only available to GBA Prime Memberslast_img read more

  • Illinois Enacts Withholding Tax Credit for Small Employers

    first_imgIllinois enacted a personal income withholding tax for small employers.Who Qualifies for the Credit?Employers with 50 or fewer Illinois full-time employees who make minimum wage can qualify for the credit. An employer must aggregate its employees to determine the threshold if:– the employer operates more than one franchise; or– the employer is a unitary business group member.The credit does not include employees who have worked fewer than 90 consecutive days before the reporting period. But, credits can accrue during that 90-day period for future reporting periods.An employer is not eligible for credits unless:– the average wage paid each employee for all employees making less than $55,000 during the reporting period exceeds;– the average wage paid each employee for all employees making less than $55,000 during the same reporting period in the prior calendar year.How Much Is the Credit?The base credit is the difference between wages paid in Illinois during the reporting period to:– employees who made minimum wage; and– employees who made less than minimum wage.The credit cannot exceed the employer’s tax liability for the reporting period.The amount of the credit equals:– 25% of the wages paid for 2020 quarterly reporting periods;– 21% of the wages paid for 2021 quarterly reporting periods;– 17% of the wages paid for 2022 quarterly reporting periods;– 13% of the wages paid for 2023 quarterly reporting periods;– 9% of the wages paid for 2024 quarterly reporting periods; and– 5% of the wages paid for 2025 quarterly reporting periods.Employers can continue to claim the credit for tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2026 and:– ending on or before December 31, 2026 for employers with more than 5 employees; or– ending on or before December 31, 2027 for employers with no more than 5 employees.P.A. 101-1 (S.B. 1), Laws 2019, effective February 19, 2019Login to read more on CCHAnswerConnect.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img read more

  • Partnership Section 179 Expensing and the Active Trade or Business Requirement

    first_imgA partnership may elect to expense property under IRC §179 only if the partnership uses the property predominantly (more than 50%) in the active conduct of a trade or business. The determination of whether the partnership is actively conducting a business is made by taking into account the activities of all partners.Example: ABC limited partnership owns a rental commercial building. The general partner actively manages all aspects of the rental business. Although the limited partners are passive partners the partnership may elect to expense any qualifying section 179 property placed in service during the tax year. In this case, the activities of the general partner alone are significant enough to meet the active conduct of a trade or business requirement.Deduction Limited to Taxable IncomeThe IRC §179 deduction that a partnership may pass through is limited to the partnership’s taxable income from the active conduct of its trade or business. The portion of a section 179 deduction disallowed by reason of the taxable income limitation is carried forward by the partnership until it has sufficient taxable income from the active conduct of its business to absorb the suspended deduction.The taxable income limitation is also applied separately at the partner level.A partner may only take taxable income from a partnership into account in applying the active taxable income limit if the partner is actively engaged in the partnership’s trade or business. Taxable income from other trades or businesses actively conducted by the partner, including wages from employment, count toward the partner’s active taxable income.EXAMPLE:  Assume that ABC partnership above elected to expense $100,000 of section 179 property and that the taxable income from the active conduct of the rental business is only $90,000. ABC may only pass-thru $90,000. ABC has a $10,000 carryforward which is eligible for pass-thru in a carryforward year in which there is active taxable income not offset by section 179 expensing on property acquired in the carryforward year.EXAMPLE: Assume that A, a limited partner in ABC partnership above, received a $30,000 section 179 allocation. In applying the taxable income limitation, A cannot take into account any amount allocated from ABC because A is a passive partner. A may only deduct the $30,000 if A has taxable income from the active conduct of a different trade or business, including wages from employment. If A only has $10,000 of active taxable income, A may deduct $10,000 and carryforward $20,000.Determining Partnership Taxable IncomeA partnership’s active taxable income is computed by aggregating the net income from all of the trades or businesses actively conducted by the partnership. The net income is determined by aggregating partnership items (e.g., income, deductions) derived from each trade or business. Each partner who actively participates in any trade or business actively conducted by the partnership is allocated a share of the active taxable income from all of the partnership’s active trade or businesses.Dollar and Investment LimitationsThe section 179 dollar and investment limitations are applied at the partner and partnership level. In a tax year beginning in 2018, the total of all section 179 deduction distributions by a partnership may not exceed $1 million (the dollar limitation). The $1 million limitation is reduced by the cost of qualifying property in excess of $2,500,000 placed in service by the partnership (the investment limitation).A partner may deduct no more than $1 million, including deductions passed through by the partnership. However, in applying the investment limitation, section 179 property purchased by the partnership does not count toward the partner’s separately applied $2,500,000 investment ceiling.Amounts that are not deductible due to the dollar and investment limitations are not carried forward.What is the Active Conduct of a Partnership Business?Whether an asset is used in a trade or business by a partnership is determined by reference to the generally applicable principles of IRC §162 for deducting business expenses.  Property used in an investment activity (IRC §212) does not qualify for expensing but may be depreciated. Investment property is also eligible for bonus depreciation.Using property in a trade or business, however, is not sufficient for purposes of section 179. A partnership must actively conduct the trade or business. This standard is less stringent than the material participation standard of the passive loss rules of IRC §469.The section 179 regulations provide minimal guidance (Reg. §1.179-2). Specifically:All facts and circumstances are considered in determining whether the partnership conducts an active trade or business;The facts and circumstances are applied in light of the purpose of the active conduct requirement as it applies to the taxable income limitation; andA partnership actively conducts a trade or business if the partnership meaningfully participates in the management or operations of the trade or businessSimilar standards apply in determining whether a partner actively participates in the partnership’s trade or business.There is a near absence of cases and rulings dealing with the section 179 active trade or business requirement. However, it may be possible to glean some additional insight from IRS Notice 2006-77 which deals with the former Go-Zone bonus depreciation deduction (IRC §1400N(d)). The notice adopts the meaningful participation standard of section 179 but effectively provides that activities performed by others on behalf of the partnership in the management or operations of the business are attributable to the partnership. Several examples are provided, including an example that concludes that a partnership that rents real property pursuant to a triple-net-lease is not engaged in the conduct of an active trade or business.For additional information regarding partnerships and the active trade or business requirement, see CCH Answer Connect Topic Page entitled Section 179 Deduction Calculation.By Ray G. Suelzer, J.D., LL.M.Login to read more on CCHAnswerConnect.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img read more

  • India Today’s Sharda Ugra on why Team India’s World Cup 2007 campaign is in trouble

    first_imgRahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar look for hopeImpossible as it may sound, the last time India were in trouble in southern Africa, things were actually worse. Smoke was emerging from Parliament, mock funeral services for the team were held outside the Eden Gardens and heads were demanded on plates. The,Rahul Dravid and Sachin Tendulkar look for hopeImpossible as it may sound, the last time India were in trouble in southern Africa, things were actually worse. Smoke was emerging from Parliament, mock funeral services for the team were held outside the Eden Gardens and heads were demanded on plates. The Indians had been clobbered by a Kwa Zulu Natal 2nd XI, embarrassed by Holland and then flattened by Australia.This was the World Cup, the only meaningful prize in the ODI game and the buck stopped dead at India’s door.To recover from a forgettable tour of New Zealand, and the loss of five ODIs in a row, the 2003 team had done all they say India 2006 has not: lined up net bowlers before landing, arrived well in advance, camped in the Durban nets. But still the batsmen struggled, still India was being steamrolled.So, at a meeting before a must-win game vs Zimbabwe, the mighty bats were all banished to the hotel swimming pool and asked to fix the problem amongst themselves. They returned with a re-ordered line-up. The next day, Tendulkar produced a precious 50 as opener, Zimbabwe were beaten and India got its groove back.The veterans of 2003 know that team fortunes can turn on trifles but three years later in South Africa, no one has been able to tap that tipping point. India have again lost five ODIs in a row. They have failed to bat out 50 overs in five of their last eight matches, seven of their last 16. “It’s like one team is playing the 100-overs game and India is playing 20-20,” says former India and Kenya coach Sandeep Patil mournfully.advertisementOne traveller with the India party says, “What’s frightening is that for the first time, we can’t see hope.” After the Port Elizabeth ODI that cost India the series, Sunil Gavaskar proclaimed, “Unless a strong message is sent for the Test series, you can kiss the World Cup good bye.” Stripping Virender Sehwag of the vice captaincy was a message alright, but it needs sound follow through. Between now and the World Cup, the team has eight matches to find faith and Indian cricket has few questions to answer.Q. Is it time to return to the OLD GUARD?Yes. First came the scramble for VVS Laxman and then the selection of Mr G for the Tests. Like both Mrs Gs, Mr G is an individual, an idea and an influence. The first hint of Sourav Ganguly’s return to the Test squad and a former selector dripped acid, “It seems there is no other cricketer in India.”Stats of the last 15 ODI results of the top teamsClick here to EnlargeBut the injury to Yuvraj Singh and his iffy World Cup chances could mean a yawning hole in the already stuttering middle order. Yuvraj’s experience, match nous and fielding are hard to replace but of all players, only Ganguly and Laxman qualify on two out of three counts.It may mean choosing between Laxman’s fire-fighting skills and the added dimension of Ganguly’s medium pace and also which of the two will be easier to handle. Rahul Dravid and Greg Chappell are firm with what they consider youthful petulance (Sreesanth was apparently dropped from the Champions Trophy as a warning).The arrival of older, stronger personalities will not be Dravid’s and Chappell’s recipe for harmony going into a big event. Patil brushes aside all objections, “It doesn’t matter if you don’t like someone’s face. The bottomline is this: youngsters are not delivering, you have too little time, so don’t go by personal grudges, bring your trusted warriors back-Laxman, Ganguly Kumble, Zaheer.”Former India coach John Wright’s advice to the Indian management is muted but focussed: “Get your top three right and know who your best bowlers are.”Q. Should the coach or captain be SACKED?No. Because it’s just too late. “It would put tremendous pressure on the team,” says one Board member. “What would the other captain or coach achieve in four months?” What the Indian think tank could contemplate is a new tack of leadership.OLD WARRIORS: VVS Laxman and Sourav Ganguly find favour againMore than the famous ‘Now or Never’, India’s 2003 World Cup campaign was built around the idea: keep winning, stay together. Along the way it took a while to engage with the humble single, finals came and went, there were frustrating stumbles. But as Javagal Srinath, a key member in 2003, remarks, “Our bad form may have been temporary, but the environment- of reinforcement and freedom- remained constant.”Maybe perform or perish, worthy idea as it may be, does not work for a team repeatedly perishing. Maybe Dravid and Chappell, self-starting high achievers both, are just too similar. Maybe there is too much stick and too little carrot. Along with the daily business of planning and preparation, one between Dravid and Chappell needs to actively work to minimize the distance between officers and men.advertisementQ. Does the team need a bowling COACH?Yes. Even chairman of selectors Dilip Vengsarkar thinks so. But, for jeepers’ sakes, choose smartly. With his aggressive posturing and unsympathetic dissection of Irfan Pathan, (once considered his protege), Wasim Akram may please the frontbenchers, but at a big ticket event, go native.Number of batsmen fielded by India in various positions in last 10 ODIs this seasonClick here to EnlargeAt the World Cup, it may help to find a savvy local, say Andy Roberts, who understands local conditions. Bruce Reid did in Australia, 2003-04. The local nails down the right lengths to bowl, short-cuts a touring team’s trials and errors, and passes on his knowledge.Former South African paceman Fanie De Villiers offered a tip to the tourists, “The Indian bowlers need to use the crease better because of the extra bounce.” And then asked, “Are they doing it? Are they getting good advice?”. The team’s assistant coach, biomechanist Ian Frazer was an opening batsman in Australian first-class cricket.The bowling unit of every team needs guidance from a senior practising colleague or an old master. At the 2003 World Cup, the bowlers’ team used technology as a basis for every bowler’s net sessions. If the bowlers had worked out that Inzamam was susceptible to the incoming ball early in his innings, at net sessions the call would go out, “okay boys, this is Inzamam, now…”Each bowler would then try to replicate the strategy formulated for Inzamam during the computer sessions out on the training ground. In the end, the bowling unit made of diverse and eccentric talents, who played together for nearly a year took India into the World Cup final.Q. Are resources well used? Is the bench really EMPTY?No. Cards in a Las Vegas casino are shuffled less than the Indian batting. Four different batsmen and four pairs have opened for India this season, though admittedly injury played a part. Six different batsmen were played at No. 3 in 10 ODIs this season, five each at No. 4, 5 and 7.BRINGING BACK ZAK: Suddenly Zaheer Khan leads the bowlersThe batsmen in those slots have between them averaged 18.52 runs. Is there a connection? What comes first? Confidence or security? Former chairman of selectors Kiran More who was known to be in sync with the current team management, says, “We have the bench strength but it needs to be developed.”He recommends expanding the current touring squad strength from 15 to 16 and taking two rookies on for experience. Did his selection committee blood put too much faith in the young players blooded last season? Did no one anticipate such a rash of second season blues?advertisementMore says in reply, “Unless you are an exceptional talent, it always helps to play two-three seasons of domestic cricket.. I also think we should have more regular A-tours to tough countries and not Zimbabwe and Kenya. It is where you will spot players who perform in foreign conditions.”Q. Is blaming the system a mere FIG LEAF?Yes. No country ever went into such a wide-ranging debate on macro issues of national psychology and institutional cultures when the problem at hand is careless batting and inexperienced bowling. Ever seen Pakistan, New Zealand or even West Indies teams lose on tour and embark on dissertations about their first-class cricket?GLOOM: Ntini snares Virender SehwagPakistan’s first-class cricket is a slowly germinating idea, the West Indies Board is made up of fractious national bodies, and there have been machine guns brandished in Sri Lankan board elections.New Zealand have the smallest of player pools to choose from but even that, their head of coaching Rick Charlesworth recently declared, is out of bounds as an excuse for failure. All these teams have better recent results than India’s-by a good distance.The BCCI’s domestic structure has holes you can drive a Super Sopper through but it is not the source of all ills, a punching bag for failures on tour. “Definitely not,” says former India player and first-class veteran Sanjay Bangar, “People who have not gone through the grind, tend to downplay first class cricket. Those who have been through it really know how to appreciate what it offers.”While it is tough to replicate Perth and Durban in Pune and Dhanbad, under a two divisional format, the Ranji Trophy in particular is more competitive than it has been. Teams now have to travel outside their zones and during the course of a season criss-cross the country to play on a variety of wickets with varying conditions.This has been a season of the busting of myths, the unmaking of reputations and, in the light of recent results, the emptiness of jargon. All that the Indians have to do now is ask themselves one question: who can win them the World Cup in the West Indies?Not who they hope can, who they think can, who they wish would do so, but who, on the basis of the evidence at hand and the time at India’s disposal, have it in them to deliver.last_img read more