The year began with Mr. Trump embroiled in a monthslong impeachment proceeding, which scrutinized his pressure campaign on the president of Ukraine to investigate his political rivals at home. That was, in retrospect, the easy part of the year.From the Democratic primary race emerged perhaps the trickiest opponent for him — Joseph R. Biden Jr., a centrist with moderate appeal. A pandemic killed more than 230,000 people in the United States and devastated the economic gains that were to serve as his main argument for re-election.But Mr. Trump was already holding rage-filled campaign rallies in January, warning that Democrats’ efforts to remove him from office were designed to “nullify the ballots of tens of millions of patriotic Americans.” He returned to the campaign trail, often visiting states where Democrats were holding primary contests. In the closing days of the campaign, Mr. Trump barnstormed the country as if the virus that defined much of his year did not exist. His lagging position in the polls was evident in his grueling travel schedule, which had him seeking to shore up votes in states that he won in 2016, with up to five stops a day.Instead of focusing his closing argument on the economy, he accused doctors of fabricating coronavirus cases in order to make money, complained about the bitter cold in states like Michigan, and hinted he wanted to fire Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, the nation’s top infectious disease expert. His last stop before Election Day was Michigan, a repeat of his travel schedule four years ago. Mr. Trump hosted Judge Barrett, her family and Republican lawmakers at the White House for a formal announcement ceremony the next weekend. There was no social distancing and few wore masks. Mr. Trump downplayed the risks of the coronavirus as it began to take hold in February. In an Oval Office address in March, he struggled to acknowledge the deepening crisis while continuing to diminish its threat to the country’s future. He described it ominously as a “foreign virus,” blaming China and Europe. The Senate, divided almost entirely along party lines, acquitted Mr. Trump of charges that he abused his power and obstructed Congress to aid his own re-election. The president hailed it as a victory, calling the entire impeachment “corrupt.” After moving the location of the Republican National Convention twice, Mr. Trump eventually decided to deliver his renomination speech from the South Lawn of the White House in August. Updated Nov. 2, 2020, 11:37 p.m. ET His campaign maintained that holding the premier political event of the presidential race on government property was not a violation of the Hatch Act. But the event symbolized a final demolition of the boundary between governing and campaigning that the president had been eroding for years. After George Floyd, an unarmed Black man, was killed in the custody of the Minneapolis police, protests against racial injustice spread throughout the country. A chemical spray and rubber bullets were used to clear peaceful protesters from Lafayette Park, in front of the White House, so that Mr. Trump could stage a photo op at a nearby church that had been vandalized days before. Nov. 2, 2020This was not the 2020 that President Trump had envisioned for himself.- Advertisement – In April, Mr. Trump tweeted “LIBERATE MICHIGAN!” and “LIBERATE MINNESOTA!” — encouraging his supporters to protest coronavirus restrictions imposed by Democratic governors. His appeal to his base furthered partisan divisions on the pandemic response. – Advertisement – Standing in front of Mount Rushmore just before the Fourth of July, Mr. Trump used an official presidential address to wage a culture war against a straw-man version of the left that he portrayed as inciting mayhem and moving the country toward totalitarianism.He tried to position himself as the candidate of law and order, claiming that “angry mobs” wanted to tear down statues of the nation’s founders and “unleash a wave of violent crime in our cities.” The Trump campaign hyped a June rally in Tulsa, Okla., as the president’s triumphant return to the stump. Though the campaign claimed that nearly one million people had registered for tickets, Mr. Trump spoke in front of a mostly empty arena. It was a sign that even his own supporters were frightened of the coronavirus, despite his repeated attempts to dismiss it. Assured acquittal by the Republican-led Senate, Mr. Trump used his State of the Union address to make the case for a second term. The most memorable moment of the evening was delivered by Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who ostentatiously ripped up her copy of the president’s speech at its conclusion. And Republican lawmakers’ cheers of “Four more years!” made it clear that both parties were interested in creating a partisan spectacle. Eight days before the election, Mr. Trump won confirmation of his third Supreme Court justice. He immediately hosted a nighttime ceremony on the White House lawn to swear in Ms. Barrett. The outdoor gathering was a mirror image of the potential superspreader event he held a month earlier to announce her nomination. – Advertisement – Less than 48 hours after the debate, Mr. Trump announced on Twitter that he and the first lady, Melania Trump, had tested positive for the coronavirus. He was taken to Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, where he remained for three days. The White House physician, Dr. Sean P. Conley, delivered confusion and obfuscation with his updates on the president’s condition.Upon his return to the White House, Mr. Trump was unrepentant about his efforts to play down the virus. “Don’t let it dominate your lives,” he urged Americans. Mr. Trump roared back to the campaign trail after his recovery. In the final weeks of the race, as the number of coronavirus cases skyrocketed nationwide, his leading message to supporters was to trust him that the worst of the pandemic was over. He railed against the news media for continuing to cover the health crisis. The day after Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg died in September, Mr. Trump and Senator Mitch McConnell, the majority leader, were already in contact with Judge Amy Coney Barrett about filling the opening on the Supreme Court. Two days later, they offered her the nomination. The first coronavirus outbreak in the spring hit hard in Northeastern cities and spots on the West Coast, but a second surge in the summer spread across a wider portion of the country. Hospitals fought to contain the surge. – Advertisement –
Jun 30, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – Three months after Vietnam declared itself free of avian influenza, the disease has struck there again, causing the loss of at least 4,500 chickens in a southern province, according to news services.A Reuters report today said chickens on three farms in the Mekong Delta province of Bac Lieu died or were destroyed after testing positive for an H5 avian flu virus.Reports did not specify the N (neuraminidase) number for the virus, leaving unclear whether it was identical to the H5N1 strain blamed for the widespread outbreaks in Vietnam and seven other Asian countries earlier this year.Local animal health officials said all tested birds from the affected farms carried the H5 virus, according to the Reuters story and a report by Xinhua, China’s state news agency.Anton Rychener, Vietnam representative for the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, said the new outbreak is not surprising and “is nothing to panic about,” according to Reuters.Last week, a Vietnamese agricultural official said 10,000 poultry from throughout Vietnam had been tested for avian flu, and many of the samples were positive for an H5 virus. The comments by Nguyen Van Thong were published in a Jun 27 Agence France-Presse report. He said the precise strain of the virus could not be identified.Vietnamese officials declared the country free of avian flu on Mar 30. A small outbreak of H5N1 avian flu was reported in the southern province of Dong Thap in early May.In the outbreaks earlier in the year, the disease jumped to humans, causing 23 cases with 16 deaths in Vietnam, according to reports from the Vietnamese government. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) has confirmed only 22 cases with 15 deaths. The disease killed or prompted the destruction of 43 million poultry in Vietnam.
The documents suggest that the potentially exposed lab workers received anthrax vaccine booster shots and were monitored by student health services. However, it appears they declined prophylactic antibiotic treatment because they believed the vial that leaked was a blank that didn’t contain B anthracis. No infections were reported. In August, the US House Committee on Energy and Commerce announced plans to hold a hearing in early October to examine the risks associated with the nation’s growing number of labs that handle dangerous microbial agents. Disturbing pattern or normal events?Edward Hammond, Sunshine Project director, said in the group’s news release that though lab accidents aren’t unexpected, the scarcity of accident reports is a concern because it gives a false impression of how safe the biodefense lab environments are and how big a risk the facilities pose to communities. He said the recent dates of the incidents at the three UT facilities raise suspicions that the schools began documenting lab accidents only after biosafety problems surfaced in April at Texas A&M. “We surmise that until the Texas A&M scandal, some of the University of Texas institutions had a de facto policy of not recording accidents with bioweapons agents, probably for fear of the potentially embarrassing and costly consequences,” Hammond stated. Sep 19, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – Three University of Texas facilities have recently had laboratory accidents with dangerous pathogens, including the agents of anthrax, tularemia, and shigellosis, according to a statement yesterday from the Sunshine Project, a nonprofit group that monitors biodefense research safety. No active research was being conducted when the workers entered the lab without protection, and researchers who conducted experiments with the agent the previous night performed routine decontamination procedures afterward, the documents suggest. The workers were advised to seek prophylactic antibiotic treatment, which they reportedly received from their personal physicians, according to the documents. On follow-up, none of the workers reported infection symptoms. Changes UT at Austin said it has made include adding new training procedures and programs, establishing a rapid-response team to handle lab accidents, providing more staff to the school’s biosafety committee, and reviewing how the university manages its research programs. Though the university didn’t believe the incident represented a release, loss, or theft of a select agent—events that require CDC notification—it submitted a report on the safety violation anyway, according to the documents. The Sunshine Project said it supports closer federal oversight of US biodefense labs, including legal reforms, mandatory accident reporting, and increased transparency. The group was established in 1999. Problem at San Antonio facilityOn Apr 12, workers at a lab at UT in San Antonio entered a tularemia lab without wearing any gloves or respiratory protection to inspect faulty air filters, according to documents from the school, also made available on the Sunshine Project’s Web site. The new incidents closely follow mishaps that occurred at Texas A&M University’s BSL-3 lab, which prompted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to suspend biodefense work there until CDC inspectors verify that the school has corrected problems identified in a recent agency investigation. The accidents at Texas A&M involved Brucella and Coxiella burnetti and were also were revealed through the Sunshine Project’s ongoing investigation of safety at biodefense labs. David Bates, director of media relations at UT Health Science Center in Houston, told CIDRAP News that the center’s environmental health and safety department has an outstanding safety compliance record, a proactive training system, and biosafety and incident response plans that are constantly reviewed. The center is known for its strong safety record, he said. Its environmental health and safety team was recently called on to review Texas A&M’s lab procedures in the wake of the recent lab accidents. Anthrax exposure risk at Houston labOn Apr 13, workers at the UT Health Science Center in Houston were potentially exposed to aerosolized B anthracis when liquid from vials leaked inside an unshielded tabletop centrifuge. Documents posted on the Sunshine Project’s Web site indicate that the school reported the accident to the CDC. Two of the locations—University of Texas (UT) Health Science Center at Houston and UT at San Antonio—perform “select agent” work in biosafety level 3 (BSL-3) labs. The third site—UT at Austin—does not do biodefense work, but some of the university’s work is funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), which expects labs to follow guidelines for reporting lab accidents, the Austin American-Statesman reported yesterday. Sep 6 CIDRAP News story “Texas A&M chief vows to fix biodefense lab problems” Francisella tularensis, another category A bioterrorism agent, at UT at San Antonio In a statement released yesterday, UT at Austin said that this past spring the NIH asked the school about lab accidents that had occurred since January 2000, and a systematic review revealed 13 incidents in the university’s laboratories during that period. Of five involving Shigella, four resulted in worker illnesses; all the workers have recovered. Sep 18 University of Texas at Austin press release It would be wrong to characterize the anthrax incident at the UT Health Science Center as a failure of procedures or training, Bates said. He said the lab notified the appropriate authorities, and the CDC told the safety team the center’s institutional response was appropriate. A Twin Cities-based laboratory expert who asked not to be named told CIDRAP News today that rare human infections from work with pathogens are not entirely unexpected in a laboratory setting, as is true of nosocomial infections in hospitals. The incidents were revealed as a result of Texas freedom-of-information requests made by the Austin-based Sunshine Project. The lab accidents involved: Shigella, a food- or waterborne category B agent, which the Sunshine Project says may have been genetically engineered, at UT at Austin Shigella sickens workers at Austin siteHowever, a series of lab accidents at UT in Austin involving Shigella appears more serious. The Sunshine Project said it had submitted a freedom-of-information request to the university, but the university revealed the laboratory accidents to the Austin American-Statesman hours before a deadline for releasing documents to the watchdog group. According to the newspaper accounts, UT at Austin officials said there were at least four lab-acquired infections between 2002 and 2005 that were not properly documented, investigated, or reported. In one of the incidents, a lab worker was checking Shigella samples in June 2003 and found that caps had shaken off test tubes, which might have contributed to airborne exposure, a Sep 15 story said. The worker got sick and was treated with antibiotics, the report said. The number of Shigella infections at UT Austin is high, but may not be entirely abnormal, the lab expert said, adding, “But if it was the same strain each time, it might suggest a continuing problem that hasn’t been fixed.” The source said the incidents involving tularemia and anthrax, however, do appear to represent lapses in safety monitoring procedures or training. UT at Austin records suggested that that and other exposures to Shigella could have been prevented if workers had been wearing protective glasses and face shields, the news report said. The NIH request, as well as the freedom-of-information requests, prompted UT Austin to review laboratory policies and procedures at the nearly 1,000 facilities on campus, the statement said, adding, “The University and sponsoring entities, such as NIH, and the public must be assured that safe laboratory research, training, and education are being conducted at and by the University.” “Whatever dangers these incidents may have presented to the laboratory workers, I see no evidence that problems represented any danger to the broader community,” the expert added. Since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the US government has boosted the number of biodefense labs. For example, in 2003 federal officials announced plans for 11 new biodefense facilities. Much of the biodefense work has been funded by Project BioShield, a $5.6 billion program established in 2004 to speed the development of medical treatments for the effects of biological and other unconventional weapons. See also: “What we are witnessing in Texas is not bad luck, it is the crumbling of the biodefense lobby’s safety façade,” Hammond said in the report. Aerosolized Bacillus anthracis, a category A bioterrorism agent, at UT Health Science Center in Houston Though the Sunshine Project’s work raises valid safety issues, which are worth exploring, “I’m not certain the problems reach the level of a crisis,” the expert said. “Area monitoring ensured that no materials were released from the lab containment area,” Bates said. “The safety of our employees and students is a priority one concern.”
The Sunshine Project used freedom-of-information requests to expose accidents and safety violations at labs that conduct biodefense work. The group monitored laboratories by pressing universities to share minutes from institutional biosafety committees. Sep 19, 2007, CIDRAP News story “Biosafety lapses reported at 3 more Texas labs” Three months later the Sunshine Project reported on biosafety lapses at three University of Texas labs in Houston, San Antonio, and Austin. A few weeks later the group charged that University of Wisconsin at Madison researchers worked on Ebola virus genetic material in a lab that lacked the required security measures. Richard H. Ebright, professor of microbiology at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, N.J., told the Chronicle that the Sunshine Project’s monitoring of biodefense research was sometimes more aggressive than the federal government’s and credited the group for accomplishing a lot with a small budget. Jul 3, 2007, CIDRAP News story “CDC suspends work at Texas A&M biodefense lab” Hammond said he was surprised that the surge in biodefense work didn’t spur more support for monitoring efforts such as his, according to a Feb 8 report in the Chronicle of Higher Education. “One would have expected that with the billions of dollars being poured into biodefense research, there would be something of a better operating environment for NGOs [nongovernmental organizations] like this,” he told the Chronicle. However, in the past few years the bulk of the Sunshine Project’s work focused on biodefense research in the United States, which rapidly expanded after the Sep 11 terrorist attacks. Much of the increase in biodefense research has been funded by Project BioShield, a $5.6 billion program passed in 2004 to speed the development of drugs and vaccines to combat the effects of biological, chemical, nuclear, and radiologic agents. Established in 1999, the Sunshine Project investigated and reported on a number of biological and chemical weapons topics, including biological methods used to eradicate illicit crops such as opium and marijuana. Sep 25, 2007, CIDRAP News story “Wisconsin lab broke Ebola rules, watchdog group says” Last October, Hammond testified at a US House of Representatives committee hearing on problems at the nation’s biodefense labs. He said the Sunshine Project’s goal was to bring more transparency and compliance to biosafety lab operations. Feb 13, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – The Sunshine Project, a nonprofit group that has monitored biological weapons developments and helped expose safety breaches at several US biodefense research facilities, announced on Feb 1 that it had ceased operations. See also: Edward Hammond, the project’s director, who worked at the group’s US office in Austin, Tex., said he shuttered the organization for financial reasons, according to a news report yesterday in Nature. “At some point you come to realize that if you don’t have buy-in from the people whose business it is to fund peace and security nongovernmental organizations, then you have to recognize reality,” he told Nature. A notice posted on the Sunshine Project Web site says the group’s resources and archives will remain online but will not be updated. Hammond told legislators that the nation could do needed biodefense research more safely with one-fifth of the current biodefense lab capacity. “Our system can’t absorb all of the labs coming online,” he said. The Sunshine Project had said it supported closer federal oversight of US biodefense labs, including legal reforms, mandatory accident reporting, and increased transparency In June 2007, the group’s revelations that some lab workers at Texas A&M University were infected with the category B bioterrorism agents Brucella and Coxiella burnetti prompted the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to suspend the university’s work on select agents and toxins. However, some experts quoted in previous CIDRAP News reports said that in certain instances—such as some of the infractions in University of Texas labs as well as the University of Wisconsin’s work with Ebola genetic material—the Sunshine Project overstated the risks of the biodefense labs to the public. “The end of their operations would create a vacuum. We’ll go back to silence,” Ebright said.
Apr 3, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) today confirmed two more cases of H5N1 avian influenza from a family cluster that surfaced in Pakistan last fall, supporting the previous finding that the virus probably spread among four brothers but went no further.Serologic (antibody) testing confirmed that two brothers, one of whom died and the other survived, had the virus, the WHO reported. In addition, the agency said another brother who died had a probable case, but no samples from him were available for testing. The WHO had confirmed one case—Pakistan’s first known H5N1 infection—in late December.The four cases were among at least eight suspected cases in northern Pakistan that were first widely reported Dec 16. The other suspected cases have since been ruled out, according to WHO spokesman Gregory Hartl.The Pakistan cluster had raised fears that the virus was improving its ability to infect humans, but the WHO said after an initial investigation in December that there was no evidence of sustained person-to-person transmission.Today the agency stated, “These laboratory test results support the epidemiological findings from the outbreak investigation in December 2007, and the final risk assessment that suggested limited human to human transmission events reported previously. This outbreak did not extend into the community, and appropriate steps were taken to reduce future risks of human infections.”The tests were conducted by the WHO’s H5 reference lab in Egypt (US Naval Medical Research Unit 3) and at the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta.Cases started with cullerOne of the two cases confirmed today was in a man who was previously identified as a veterinarian and had helped cull chickens in an avian flu outbreak area. He became ill on Oct 29 and later recovered, the WHO said.The other three brothers all fell ill after having close contact with the veterinarian, and none of them had had contact with sick or dead poultry, the agency reported. The second brother in the cluster—whose case is listed as probable—became ill on Nov 12 and died a week later. The other two brothers both got sick on Nov 21; one of them died Nov 28, but the other fully recovered. Officials previously said the brothers helped care for one another during their illnesses.The man who died Nov 28, listed as the third patient, is the one whose case was confirmed in December. He was identified as a 25-year-old from the Peshawar area. Polymerase chain reaction was used to verify his case.Serologic tests were used to confirm the two latest cases because no respiratory samples were available, Hartl confirmed today. Explaining why the results were delayed, he told CIDRAP News via e-mail, “Serology takes awhile because the virus has to be grown in sufficient quantity to perform [the] test with sera.”Hartl said the virus in the third Pakistani patient was identified as a clade 2.2 strain of H5N1. Clade 2.2 viruses have been found in birds in more than 60 countries in Asia, Europe, the Middle East, and Africa, and have caused human cases in Azerbaijan, China, Egypt, Djibouti, Iraq, Nigeria, and Turkey, as well as Pakistan, according to a recent WHO report.The cases in Pakistan sparked concern in the United States after another brother of the infected men, a man living on Long Island, attended the funeral of one of the victims. After his return home, he reported possible exposure to the virus and went into voluntary home quarantine. He was tested and found to be free of the virus.Latest Indonesian cases confirmedYesterday the WHO recognized the three human H5N1 cases—two of them fatal—reported earlier this week by authorities in Indonesia. The agency said the cases, which have not been linked epidemiologically, involve:A 15-year-old boy from Subang district, West Java province, who fell ill Mar 19 and died Mar 26An 11-year-old girl from Bekasi in West Java who got sick Mar 19 and died Mar 28A 21-month-old girl from Bukit Tinggi in West Sumatra; she became ill Mar 17, was hospitalized Mar 22, and is currently recovering.Indonesia has had 132 confirmed H5N1 cases, of which 107 were fatal, the WHO said.With the addition of the two Pakistan cases and the three in Indonesia, the WHO’s global H5N1 count has risen to 378 cases with 238 deaths.See also: Apr 3 WHO statementhttp://www.who.int/csr/don/2008_04_03/en/index.htmlJan 3, 2008, CIDRAP News story “WHO: initial analysis of Pakistani H5N1 suggests no dangerous mutations”Dec 27, 2007, CIDRAP News story “WHO confirms H5N1 case in Pakistan cluster”Dec 17, 2007, CIDRAP News story “Possible H5N1 family cluster probed in Pakistan”Apr 2 WHO statement on Indonesian H5N1 caseshttp://www.who.int/csr/don/2008_04_02/en/index.htmlFebruary 2008 WHO report “Antigenic and genetic characteristics of H5N1 viruses and candidate H5N1 vaccine viruses developed for potential use as human vaccines”http://www.who.int/influenza/resources/documents/H5VaccineVirusUpdate20080214.pdf
Proposals to ban SRM from all animal feed and pet food grew out of concerns that the BSE agent could spread if feed intended for nonruminant animals, such as pigs, poultry, or pets, was inadvertently mixed with cattle feed during production or transport or was accidentally given to cattle on farms. The banned items, known as specified risk materials (SRM), include the brains and spinal cords of cattle more than 30 months old. The FDA is also providing a week for public comment solely on whether to delay the ban. Apr 7, 2009 (CIDRAP News) The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed yesterday to delay by another 2 months a long-planned ban on the use of certain cattle materials in any animal feed, a measure designed to prevent the spread of bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), or mad cow disease. The ban would take effect Jun 26 instead of Apr 27. Apr 7 NCBA statement To prevent the spread of BSE, the United States and Canada both banned the use of cattle protein in feed for cattle and other ruminants in 1997. After their first BSE cases, both countries banned the use of SRM from cattle older than 30 months in human food. Apr 24, 2008, CIDRAP News story “FDA broadens BSE-related feed ban” The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) criticized the FDA in a statement today, saying the agency should reopen public discussion of the ban to allow for full consideration of problems it will cause. Dr. Elizabeth Parker, the NCBA’s chief veterinarian, called the 7-day period for commenting on the 2-month delay “a weak and ineffective response to the issues already arising from this ill-considered decision.” Existing BSE safeguards have limited the prevalence of BSE in healthy US cattle to a “negligible” level, the NCBA said. The group argued that the expanded feed ban will yield little benefit for animal health or food safety while causing “tremendous costs” and disposal problems for ranchers. The agency said it was proposing the delay because some cattle industry groups have expressed concern about their ability to comply with the rule by Apr 27, with some saying they are finding it difficult to find other ways to get rid of materials that can no longer be made into animal feed. “This rule has essentially ended rendering services in many parts of the country, and left producers with no legal alternatives,” said Parker. FDA announcement on delay of BSE final rulehttp://www.fda.gov/AnimalVeterinary/NewsEvents/CVMUpdates/ucm133462.htm See also: The ban, first announced a year ago, is poised to take effect more than 5 years after the first US BSE case was discovered, in a Canadian-born cow in Washington state in December 2003. Canada, which detected its first BSE case a few months earlier and has identified about a dozen since then, imposed a similar ban in July 2007. The United States has identified three cases, the last in March 2006.
RELATED NEWS: “Appearances at this year’s fairs and presentations in our strongest markets – Germany, Austria, Italy and Slovenia – gave us a good insight into the beginning of this tourist year and what tourism workers in Kvarner can expect. Although the tourist year 2019 will be challenging for many destinations, the announcements of our partners confirm that the interest of guests, especially from Germany, for Kvarner will not wane”Concludes Perišić Živadinov. Even according to the announcements of Kvarner hoteliers, representatives of camps and a large number of employees from the tourism sector in general, which preceded Easter, good and positive numbers were expected in Kvarner. And that came true. According to the official data of the eVisitor system, during 4 holidays (from Good Friday to Easter Monday) there were 28.500 guests in Kvarner who spent 99.000 nights, which is even 100% more when compared to the Easter holidays in 2018. In hotels, most of which were opened on the Opatija Riviera, almost half of overnight stays (49.000) were realized. 23.000 overnight stays were realized in household facilities, and 22.000 overnight stays in camps, mostly on the Kvarner islands. Most overnight stays were realized on the island of Krk (32.300), followed by the Opatija Riviera (23.400), the island of Lošinj (15.500), the Crikvenica-Vinodol Riviera (10.000), Rijeka and its surroundings (6.300), the island of Rab (5.500), and the island of Cres. (5.300) and in Gorski kotar (850). Guests from Germany, Croatia, Austria, Italy and Slovenia stayed in more than 100 open hotels and as many as 25 camps, as well as a large number of holiday homes and apartments. At the same time, German guests realized 25% of the total number of overnight stays, while domestic guests and guests from Austria realized 14% of the total number of overnight stays, and guests from Italy 11%. That a record number of guests stayed in Kvarner during Easter this year is also proven by comparisons with 2017 or 2016. So this year there were 37% more overnight stays compared to 2017, when the Easter holidays were in the same period of April and even an incredible 147% more compared to 2016, when the Easter holidays fell at the end of March. Namely, Kvarner continues with positive tourist results in the pre-season period, which is the main goal of all Kvarner tourist workers in the last few years, and in the first 4 months of this year it is currently recording 10% more overnight stays. From year to year, the Kvarner Tourist Board, together with the system of tourist boards and our tourist economy, the main focus is to create motives for the arrival of guests in Kvarner in the pre- and post-season, says the director of the Kvarner Tourist Board, Ph.D. Irene Peršić Živadinov adds: “In the last 8 years, if we look only at the pre-season periods, we are talking about a jump of as much as 90%, while in the total number of overnight stays for the same period we have achieved an increase of 50%. This pronounced trend of increasing the number of guests, both foreign and domestic, shows us that we have a well-established Development Strategy on which our activities and programs are based, with an emphasis on filling the period outside the main summer tourist season.” OVER HALF A MILLION NIGHTS WERE ACHIEVED DURING THE EASTER HOLIDAYS OPERATIONAL PLAN FOR DEVELOPMENT OF CYCLOTURISM IN KVARNER SIGNED
Categories: Letters to the Editor, OpinionI thought I would share my experience while recently grocery shopping at my local market.I was wandering up and down the aisles, when an older gentleman came up to me and politely chastised me for leaving my purse in the child’s seat of the cart and turning my back on it.He suggested that I take the child’s restraint strap and loop it through the handle on my purse. Such a simple thing. And since my purse is very heavy to keep on my shoulder while shopping, this was a great idea.I thanked the gentleman for giving me such a handy tip. This way, no one can walk off with your purse. Since the man was so kind, I thought I would share his idea.Marty ShantyCharlton More from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?Schenectady, Saratoga casinos say reopening has gone well; revenue down 30%
Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion I think president Trump’s recent proposal for a military parade in Washington, D.C., is a bad idea. He seems to want to turn the streets of our capital into replicas of the streets of Moscow or the streets of Pyongyang, North Korea.I concede grudgingly that the vast amount of money we spend on the military may be necessary for our defense, but I’m still somewhat appalled by the fact that we spend more on our military than all of our Western allies put together. However, although our military spending may unfortunately be necessary, I don’t think it’s something we should celebrate with a parade.Deep down however, my objection to a military parade is that it’s clearly a typical self-aggrandizing Trump maneuver. I wouldn’t be surprised if he would like our troops to salute him with a “Heil Trump” as they passed the reviewing stand.John VohrNorthvilleMore from The Daily Gazette:Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s press conference for Sunday, Oct. 18Cuomo calls for clarity on administering vaccineEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes
Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinion Is Trump uninformed or just a persistent liar? There is no such thing as new DACA recipients. No person arriving in the country after 2007 can ever qualify for DACA. I am providing this link (www.uscis.gov/archive/consideration-deferred-action-childhood-arrivals-daca#guidelines) from the United States Citizenship and Naturalization Services for all Trump worshipers and Fox News watchers so that they can obtain accurate information about the DACA program. It’s a shame that citizens are being so misinformed by this president. Either he doesn’t know what the program is or he’s lying for political gain to energize his base. It was so inappropriate of him to use the Easter Egg event at the White House to spout his lies and misinformation in the presence of children. It was Trump who ended the DACA program by executive order. It’s so extremely deceitful of him to blame the current status of DACA on the Democrats.Maxine BrisportRotterdamMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Urgent: Today is the last day to complete the censusCar hits garage in Rotterdam Sunday morning; Garage, car burnRotterdam convenience store operator feels results of having Stewart’s as new neighborEDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidationEDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homes