Happy New Year to all!
You may qualify for a
(see ad at page 15)
WE PROVIDE PRESS COVERAGE
FOR ANY EVENTS OR PROMOTIONS.
Contact 1-855-454-7678 for more details.
Katrina Halili back on the cover
of FHM - page 13
VOL. 3 ISSUE 10
VIEW US ONLINE: WWW.FILAMPOST.COM
JAN 1, 2015 - JAN 7, 2015
Searchers find wreckage,
bodies from AirAsia jet S
for college prep
Indonesia (AP) The first proof of the
fate of AirAsia Flight
8501 emerged Tuesday
from the shallow, aquacolored waters of the
Java Sea, confirming
that the plane crashed
with 162 people aboard
in an area not far from
where it dropped off radar screens.
Two days after the
jet vanished, searchers
found as many as six
bodies and debris that
included a life jacket,
an emergency exit door
and a suitcase about 10
miles from the plane’s
last known coordinates.
The airliner’s disappearance
through a two-hour
flight between Surabaya, Indonesia, and Sin-
One at heart: The union of Dingdong and Marian. Story on page 13.
Elcamel, from Cebu
province, said she
weighed about 60kg
planning to sue her when she first arformer
employer rived here to work
whom she claimed in 2013.
had starved and On Nov. 13, Nenita
beaten her for near- was carried out by
ly 18 months.
policemen from her
Nenita Batiancila former employer’s
Kelana Jaya with
her head drenched
in blood and bruises
on her body. She
Nenita said she
(Cont. on Page 5)
(Cont. on Page 7)
‘Seniang’ kills 31 in South
EBU CITY, PhilTortured Filipina maid plans Cippines—TropiStorm “Seniang”
to sue ex-Malaysian employer cal
triggered floods and
Filipina maid is
gapore triggered an international hunt for the
aircraft involving dozens of planes, ships and
helicopters. It is still
unclear what brought
the plane down.
Images of the debris
and a bloated body
shown on Indonesian
television sent a spasm
of anguish through the
room at the Surabaya
airport where relatives
The first sign of the
jet turned up about 10
miles (16 kilometers)
from its last known
coordinates. Parts of
the interior, including
the oxygen tank, were
brought to to the nearest
town, Pangkalan Bun.
Another find included
hour, the storm, internationally called
electric posts and
landslides in a two- washed away houses
day sweep across as it slammed into
Mindanao and the Vi- Surigao del Sur provsayas, leaving at least ince on Monday and
31 people dead, seven barreled west toward
missing and more Palawan
than 40,000 in evacu- where it was expected
Packing peak winds
(Cont. on Page 9)
of 65 kilometers per
AN FRANCISCO — In what
is seen as a groundbreaking
initiative by a city government,
the City of San Francisco in
December approved the release
of $100,000 to a Filipino-led
nonprofit to launch a one-of-akind, culturally sensitive college
preparatory program for low-income Filipino immigrant youth
and other communities of color
in the South of Market district.
With the strong support of District 6 Supervisor Jane Kim, the
South of Market Community Action Committee, and the South
of Market Youth Collaborative,
City Hall granted the funds that
would allow West Bay Pilipino
Multi Service Center, the oldest
Filipino American nonprofit in
Northern California, to launch a
college prep program early next
“This is a historic moment
for the Filipino American community,” said Vivian Zalvidea
Araullo, West Bay Pilipino’s executive director. “As far as I can
tell, there is no other city government that has shown tremendous support for the welfare of
underserved Filipino immigrant
youth aspiring for higher education.” The program is expected
to help address the worsening
income and social inequality
gap in San Francisco.
Robber kills Filipino employee at a Lawmakers promise to help strapped oil-patch towns
Relief could be on the horizon for strapped called in February to address tax distributions.
Las Vegas Walgreens
public services in the Northern Plains’ boom“There’s going to be debate, but I think it
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
LAS VEGAS, Nevada — A Filipino worker at a Walgreens was shot and killed during a robbery allegedly committed by a
former coworker on Friday morning, De-
The victim, Antonino Isnit.
and Isnit at gunpoint. The suspect allegedly
pointed his gun at Isnit, telling him, “Sorry,
Tony, but you know me,” according to the
times at Isnit
the female employee to sit on
the floor. He
fled the scene.
dispatched to the
scene found 11
identified Ackerman as the
robbed a Walgreens in the 9400 block of
West Desert Inn Boulevard, near South
Fort Apache Road, two days earlier.
cember 26, a police report disclosed.
Police say the alleged robber, Jin Ackerman, 25, worked with the victim, Antonino
Isnit, 58, three years ago at
the Walgreens on 8500 W.
Cheyenne Ave., near Rampart Boulevard. A SWAT
team served a search warrant and arrested Ackerman on Friday.
Ackerman is accused of
robbing the location and
fatally shooting Isnit, according to the Las Vegas
Ackerman allegedly entered the Cheyenne location about 4 a.m. Friday
and robbed the store of
$5,000 to $7,000 in cash. Suspected killer, Jin Ackerman.
He held another employee
ing oil patch, as elected leaders in Montana
and North Dakota move to steer more money
into the region during the states’ upcoming
Tens of thousands of workers have been
drawn to the region’s shale oil boom in recent
years. Their arrival has brought increased demands for
r a n g ing from
to affordable housing.
Prior efforts to
t h o s e
n e e d s
got delayed by political disagreement.
Political leaders on both sides of the Montana-North Dakota border said they are optimistic more can be done in 2015. Lawmakers
from the states convene in early January.
“We’re very hopeful we’ll be able to find a
path where we can do it this session,” Montana Gov. Steve Bullock said.
Most drilling for oil and gas is in North
Dakota. Yet the population growth from the
boom has spilled over the border, and both
states face rising pressures on infrastructure
that are taxing the ability of local governments
to keep pace.
In North Dakota, Gov. Jack Dalrymple is
proposing to change the formula for oil and
gas tax distributions so local governments get
60 percent, up from the current 25 percent.
Senate Republican Majority Leader Rich
Wardner said that revamped funding formula
favoring western North Dakota communities
likely will be the biggest topic facing lawmakers when the Legislature convenes Jan. 6.
Democrats in the North Dakota Legislature
tried unsuccessfully to get a special session
will pass,” said Wardner, whose district is located within the oil patch. “Counties and cities
in the Bakken — they are the ones that really
need the help.”
Wardner said lawmakers from other parts of
the state are largely sympathetic to the problems in western North Dakota. The state’s
water and sewer
plants to roads
Bullock is pushing $45 million
in grants and
in eastern Montana cities and
The Democratic governor in 2013 vetoed a broader measure
that would have set aside money from mineral revenues to pay for water, sewer and road
projects in the Bakken oil-producing region.
Despite overwhelming bipartisan support in
both the House and Senate, Bullock said the
veto was necessary to maintain the state’s
budget reserve and keep it from sliding into
His latest proposal for the oil patch is tucked
into a $300 million statewide infrastructure
Montana Senate President Debby Barrett, a
Republican, said she wants the eastern Montana money separated from the larger package
so it can be addressed on its own merits.
Bullock expressed reluctance to break up the
plan into smaller pieces.
The proposal also has given rise to tensions
over Bullock’s intention to use bonds instead
of cash to pay for much of his plan.
Regardless of what approach prevails, Barrett said, lawmakers agree more money is
needed for the oil patch.
Key developments in tension between
police, communities after high-profile
deaths of blacks
The killings of two unarmed blacks by
white police officers in Missouri and New
York this summer touched off protests and
a national debate over police conduct that
intensified after grand juries declined to indict the officers.
Tensions escalated further after two New
New York City Police Commissioner William Bratton said Sunday it was wrong for
hundreds of police officers to turn their
backs to a video monitor outside a Queens
church as Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke a day
earlier at the funeral of slain Officer Rafael
“I certainly don’t support
that action,” Bratton told CBS’
“Face the Nation.” ‘’That funeral was held to honor Officer
Ramos. And to bring politics,
to bring issues into that event, I
think, was very inappropriate.”
He acknowledged, though, that
the morale of officers is low
and said their actions “unfortunately” reflected the feelings of
some toward the mayor. Some
police officers blame de Blasio for creating an atmosphere
of negativity toward the New
York Police Department after a
grand jury declined to charge an
officer in Garner’s chokehold
ADDS FLAG IS THAT OF THE NYPD - The body of New death.
York City police officer Rafael Ramos is brought from Christ Bratton said de Blasio was “toTabernacle Church draped in an NYPD flag after his funeral tally supportive” of officers and
in the Glendale section of Queens, where he was a church had contributed hundreds of
member, Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014, in New York. Ramos and millions of dollars outside the
his partner, officer Wenjian Liu, were killed Dec. 20 as they department’s budget this year,
sat in their patrol car on a Brooklyn street. The shooter, Is- much of it focused on officer
maaiyl Brinsley, later killed himself. (AP Photo/Craig Rut- safety enhancements.
tle) (The Associated Press)
York City police officers were killed last
weekend by a man who suggested in online
posts that their deaths were in retaliation
for the deaths of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and Eric Garner in New
York City. The gunman committed suicide.
Some key developments in the aftermath
of the tragedies:
NYPD BOSS: KEEP POLITICS OUT OF
Former New York City Mayor Rudolph
Giuliani agreed with Bratton, saying it was
wrong for officers to turn their backs on de
Blasio or to try to blame him for the officers’ deaths.
But he also said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that de Blasio should apologize to the
police department because he “created an
impression with the police that he was on
the side of the protesters.”
“Say you’re sorry,” Giuliani urged.
THEFT OF FREE NEWSPAPER IS A CRIME IN THIS STATE
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Q&A on what might have happened to AirAsia flight
NEW YORK — Rescue crews are searching Indonesian
waters for AirAsia Indonesia Flight 8501, which disappeared Sunday with 162 passengers and crew onboard. The
plane was flying from Surabaya, Indonesia’s second-largest
city, and was about halfway to its destination, Singapore,
when it vanished from radar.
Q : W H AT
C O U L D
A: It is way
too early to
know for sure,
but here are
The plane was
in the safest
part of flight:
Just 10 percent of fatal
while a plane
was at cruise
elevation, according to a
safety study published by Boeing in August.
Passing through bad weather such as severe thunderstorms
could have been a factor. Airbus jets have sophisticated
computers that automatically adjust to wind shears or other
weather disruptions. But weather — combined with pilot
errors — has played a role in past air disasters that occurred
at cruise elevation, including the 2009 Air France Flight
447 crash over the Atlantic Ocean.
Another possibility is some type of catastrophic metal fatigue caused by the cycle of pressurization and depressurization associated with each takeoff and landing cycle. This
A320 had had 13,600 takeoffs and landings. Many
occurred in humid climate,
which speeds corrosion. Still, metal fatigue is unlikely because this plane is only 6 years old.
Finally, there’s the possibility of terrorism or a mass murder by the pilot. There’s no evidence of either action, but
neither can yet be ruled out.
Ebola case confirmed in Glasgow
A healthcare worker who has just “worked well” after the woman
returned from West Africa has been starting exhibiting symptoms.
diagnosed with Ebola and is being
The health secretary added: “We
treated in hospital in Glasgow.
are also reviewing our procedures
The woman, who arrived from Si- and protocols for all the other NHS
erra Leone on Sunday night, is in workers who are working at the
isolation at Glasgow’s Gartnavel moment in Sierra Leone.”
Charity Save the Children conAll
p o s t h e
c o n was an
N H S
w i t h
are bew h o
i n g
w a s
includt h e m
to ScotTreatland via
m e n t
HeathC e n row.
Health The woman is being treated in isolation at Gartnavel Hos- T o w n ,
S e c - pital in Glasgow
Jeremy Hunt confirmed that the
The organisation’s humanitarian
woman would be taken to a spe- director, Michael von Bertele, said:
cialist unit in London.
“Save the Children is working
She will be flown from Glasgow closely with the UK government,
and taken to the Royal Free Hospi- Scottish government and Public
tal in north London “as soon as we Health England to look into the cirpossibly can,” Mr Hunt said.
cumstances surrounding the case.”
It is expected she will be transAt a news conference in Glasgow,
ferred overnight by air ambulance. First Minister Nicola Sturgeon
The hospital has a specialist iso- stressed that the risk to the general
lation unit and treated William public was very low.
Pooley, the British nurse who conShe added that the patient was
tracted and recovered from Ebola.
thought to have had contact with
only one other person since arrivMr Hunt said the government was ing in the city, but that all passendoing “absolutely everything it gers on the flights the woman took
needs to be” to keep the UK safe.
will be traced.
He insisted NHS processes
Egypt urged to
staff on arrest
The parents of one of the three
al-Jazeera journalists jailed in
Egypt are optimistic they will
soon be released.
Speaking to the BBC on the
first anniversary of their arrest,
Peter Greste’s father said he
was confident their convictions
would be overturned.
Mr Greste, Mohamed Fahmy
and Baher Mohamed were sentenced to between seven and
10 years in June for spreading
false news to help a terrorist
Later this week, a court will
decide whether they have
grounds for appeal.
The journalists strenuously
deny collaborating with the
banned Muslim Brotherhood
after the overthrow of President Mohammed Morsi by the
military last year. They say they
were jailed simply for reporting
Colleagues and friends of
Mr Greste, an Australian former BBC correspondent, Mr
Fahmy, al-Jazeera English’s
Canadian-Egyptian Cairo bureau chief, and Mr Mohamed,
an Egyptian producer, marked
the anniversary of their arrest at
newsrooms across the world on
Mumbai attack ‘leader’ wins Pakistan appeal
The alleged leader of the 2008 militant attacks on Mumbai has won
an appeal against his detention in
Lawyers for Zaki-ur-Rehman
Lakhvi said a government detention order issued last week infringed his rights, as he had been
granted bail by another court.
Analysts say he could be freed
as soon as the paperwork is completed.
India says a Pakistani militant
group carried out the attacks,
which killed 165. Pakistan has
not convicted anyone suspected
of planning the attacks.
Mr Lakhvi is among seven suspects who have been in jail awaiting trial for six years. Nine others
have been charged in absentia.
Analysts say the decision to grant
him bail came at an embarrassing
time for the Pakistani government.
Pakistan’s Prime Minister Nawaz
Sharif recently promised to crack
down on militancy after the Taliban killed 141 people at a school
Analysis: Haroon Rashid, BBC
The accused won the appeal after
the government failed to submit a
detailed reply to the court’s queries. A government lawyer sought
more time, arguing officials were
busy with other pressing engagements so they couldn’t prepare
a reply. The accused, lodged in
Rawalpindi’s Adiala Jail, is techni-
cally a free man until the government develops a new strategy.
The timing of the court judgment
couldn’t have been more awkward for the Pakistan government,
which is desperately trying to send
a message that it has “zero tolerance” to militancy after the Peshawar school massacre. Many fear
that the suspension of the detention order limits the government’s
options. One last hope could be
seeking help of the higher court.
Mr Lakhvi was granted bail by an
anti-terror court on 18 December,
but hours later the government
imposed a three-month detention
order and said it would appeal
against the bail decision.
Mr Lakhvi’s lawyers argued in
Islamabad’s High Court that the
detention infringed his rights.
The judge accepted the arguments
and quashed the detention order.
The suspect is now technically
free to leave jail, but has been ordered to appear in court for every
hearing concerning his case.
Q: WHAT DID THE PILOTS SAY TO AIR TRAFFIC
A: The last communication between the pilot and air traffic
control was at 6:13 a.m. Sunday (6:13 p.m. EST Saturday)
when the pilot “asked to avoid clouds by turning left and
going higher to 34,000 feet (10,360 meters).” The last radar contact occurred three
minutes later. There was
no distress call. But pilots
are trained to focus first
on the emergency at hand
and then communicate
only when free.
Q: HOW DOES A
PLANE JUST FALL OFF
A: It’s still unclear what
traffic controllers saw on
their screens when the
plane disappeared from
radar. Authorities haven’t
said whether they lost
only the secondary radar target, which is created by the plane’s transponder, or
whether the primary radar target, created by energy reflected from the plane, was lost as well. If a plane came apart in
the air or suffered a loss of electrical power, the secondary
target would be lost, but the primary target is often still visible on radar. But if the plane were descending at rate of
over 6,000 feet a minute — typical of a plane about to crash
— the primary target might be lost as well.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
How to stop, hopefully, the
New Year’s Eve mayhem
t’s that time
of the year
While the iron’s hot
2014 may well be remembered as the year when government policymakers woke to
reality that the economy needs their proactive involvement to achieve a faster growth rate.
first time since President Aquino assumed office, the administration actually started moving—and at an impressive pace—on the public-private partnership program, which is the cornerstone of its economic program. Not everything was smooth sailing, of course; just like anywhere
else in the world, it never is. But government bureaucrats, or at least some of them, finally set aside
their interminable planning sessions and overdone feasibility studies and decided to “just do it,” as
that famous sneaker ad counsels.
This is important because, for all the professions of love that the administration has made for
“inclusive growth”—that is, ensuring that the benefits of a resurgent economy are felt as much by
the poor as the rich—it seemed to overlook the fact that the billion-peso fortune it continues to funnel into its Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino subsidy program is but a stopgap measure. For genuine
inclusive growth to take hold, only the participation of the private sector on a massive scale will do.
But the administration, with its dogged focus on cleaning up the government in the first few years
of its term, appeared to forget that private-sector initiative can only be spurred with public-sector
The administration’s moves to spur faster economic growth could not have come at a more opportune time. The Philippines has received another credit-rating
upgrade from an international debt watcher, pushing the country higher into investment-grade territory. This means that all Philippine entities, from the government to private corporations, can
borrow funds from overseas at lower interest rates. With global interest rates set to rise, this is a
welcome development on which Filipinos should not fail to capitalize.
Indeed, there is a large infrastructure gap which the Philippines needs to bridge if it is to join the
ranks of more developed nations and reduce poverty. This gap can only be reduced by a massive
infrastructure program, and there is no better time to do it than the present, with the small window
of low borrowing rates still open to the country. It is this small funding window that would allow the government to bring into higher gear the
rehabilitation and reconstruction program it has
put up in response to the damage Supertyphoon
“Yolanda” wrought on Eastern Visayas.
Month after month in 2014, pundits expressed
dismay at reports of persistent underspending by
(An Employees owned Publication)
the government. It’s time for the administration
Distributed weekly in Northern California
to abandon this miserly approach to economic
stimulus and actually start spending where the
1290 B Street, Suite 203,
funds are needed.
Hayward, CA 94541
Finally, there is the good news brought about
Tel # 510-885-8827,
by the drop in oil prices worldwide. The Philippines—being an importer of “black gold” to run
Fax # 510-538-7115
everything from motor
[email protected] or
vehicles to power plants—is widely expected to
benefit from this phenomenon. Consumers are
actually beginning to feel the benefits through
lower petroleum prices and, slowly, lower public
As I See It
by Neal H. Cruz
making all the usual noise and pretense of
trying to stop the madness and mayhem.
As of this writing yesterday, there were
already 113 cases of firecracker injuries
recorded by the Department of Health.
By the time you read this, there would be
On New Year’s Eve, or two days from
now, the whole country will be like a war
zone, with explosions everywhere and
fireworks shooting up into the sky; the
injured, whimpering in pain and crowding the emergency rooms of hospitals; and
the doctors and nurses overworked trying
to save their lives and limbs, sometimes
unsuccessfully. Smoke and the acrid smell
of gunpowder will fill the air like fog and
it will be risky to drive because visibility
will be limited. There will be a few fires
caused by hoarded fireworks or exploding
firecrackers carelessly thrown.
Can we stop this yearly madness? It
seems impossible, but yes, we can—if the
authorities know what to do. The trouble
is, they don’t.
A few weeks before the New Year’s Eve
merrymaking, the police and fire department, cameramen and reporters in tow,
make a show of inspecting firecracker
stores and confiscating banned fireworks.
Warnings are issued by the DOH, the police and local governments. Police burn
seized banned fireworks, again with journalists in attendance—but only some; the
rest they keep to be sold clandestinely to
the very people they are warning not to explode firecrackers.
But these are all only for show, so that
the public will think they are doing something. The fact is they are doing these
things too late.
For example, the police invited fireworks
manufacturers to a meeting, presumably
to ask them to stop making banned firecrackers—but this only a few days before
New Year’s Eve. What good will that do?
By that time, the banned fireworks would
have been made. And once made, they
have to be sold, even on the sly, otherwise
the manufacturers would lose their investments.
Inspecting the stores with fanfare—again
for publicity—is also useless. By the time
the inspectors arrive, the store owners
would have already hidden the banned
firecrackers, to be sold clandestinely later.
Warning the public against exploding
firecrackers does not have much effect either, as experience has shown. Everyone
thinks they are careful and not as foolish
as those who have hurt themselves. What
happened to others will never happen to
them, so they think—until it happens to
People will buy firecrackers, banned or
not, for as long as they are available for
sale. And stores will stock up on fireworks
for as long as people buy them. And manufacturers will continue making them for as
long as there is a demand for them. The
pyrotechnics industry is, after all, big business.
The thing to do is, to go to the source,
the manufacturers themselves and to tell
them—many months before New Year’s
Eve, not a few days before—not to make
the dangerous fireworks. Fireworks factories start their manufacturing operations
six months before the new year.
Inspections should be made regularly—
unannounced so that violators would be
caught in the act. The licenses of violators
should be confiscated, not only suspended. Owners of violating factories should
be jailed as the law mandates, not merely
fined P20,000 to P30,000; that’s chicken
feed to them. The law should be amended
to make the fines heftier.
Local officials should be made liable for
violations in their territories. Local government personnel, after all, being nearest
to the factories, should make the periodic
inspections while the fireworks are still being manufactured, not after.
So that the manufacturers won’t be forced
out of business and their workers out of
jobs, they should be allowed to continue
making fireworks—but only the safe ones,
those that fly into and explode in the sky in
a kaleidoscope of colors. Without the fireworks, New Year’s Eve would lose much
of its color, wonder and merrymaking.
But thes fireworks cost a lot of money, so
local governments should have fireworks
displays in the town plaza or park so their
constituents would have something to
watch when the new year marches in.
Firecrackers should be made small, limited to the size of cigarettes at most, to ensure they’re safe. Even if you’re holding
these with the tips of your fingers when
they explode, your fingers are left only
with a tingling sensation. Which is not to
say that you should do that. With small,
safe and inexpensive firecrackers, manufacturers would be able to sell more and
people would not be deprived of the joy of
exploding firecrackers in their front yards.
At present, the smallest and cheapest
firecrackers are the Five-Star triangle and
“piccolo” that, not coincidentally, cause
the most injuries.
Editor-in-Chief & CEO
Atty. Crispin C. Lozano
Exec. Vice President
Trillanes: New case vs Binay to emerge as Senate
body resumes probe in January
General Advertising Manager
Bureau Chief, Silicon Valley
Alvin Maglan, CPA
Content Syndication Partner
San Francisco FilAm Post, LLC
Publisher of The San Francisco Post & Filam Post
The Fil-Am Post will be happy to hear from
you. Comments, letters to the editor, contributions, story/picture submissions can be sent via
email to [email protected] ATTN: Fil-Am
Post Editor,. All submissions are subject to editing for style and accuracy.
All Rights Reserved 2013.
NOTICE TO ADVERTISERS
Fil-Am Post reserves the right to refuse any advertising not in keeping with
the publication nature of Fil-Am Post, filampost.com, and all or any other
material published under SF Filam News, a Limited Liability Company. For
Corrections: Advertisers agrees to verify the corrections of the advertisement. Fil-Am Post will be responsible for only one incorrect insertion. Any
error must be reported immediately. For Damages: Advertisers agrees FilAm Post, filampost.com and all or any other material published under the
company shall not be liable to the customer for damages resulting from failure to include in the advertisement any item of advertising or from errors in
spelling or grammar or omission printed or not printed in the advertisement
in which the error or omission occurred, including but not limited to the loss
of business by Advertiser. For Content: Advertisers assumes full responsibility containing the right to use any name, address, trademark, service mark,
trade name, or other copy in any advertisement. Advertiser assumes full responsibility for determining that the advertising will conform in all respects
to all applicable laws, including but not limited to, all licensing requirements
of federal, state or local licensing authorities.
Disclaimer: Views and opinions expressed herein by writers, columnists,
contributors and advertisers are their own and do not necessarily reflect
those of the publisher, management and staff of Fil-Am Post. Our publication
will not be responsible for incorrect printing, reproduction, photographical
errors or information list or for loss or damage of unsolicited manuscripts.
Reproduction or redistribution in whole or in part is prohibited.
MANILA, Philippines–Vice President Jejomar Binay backed out of his own proposed
debate with Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV because he is afraid of the truth, which is hard
to destroy even with the most skilled of arguments, according to the senator who was
supposed to have faced off with Binay on
But Trillanes, a former Navy officer, also
said it wasn’t the first time Binay was untrue to his word.
The Vice President backed out of the debate because he was afraid the public would
learn that when he was Makati mayor he
conspired with Magdalo renegade soldiers
to launch an attempt to unseat then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo in 2007.
Trillanes, who led the 2003 Oakwood mutiny in Makati against the Arroyo administration for which he was detained for several years, made the assertion on Tuesday
after Binay withdrew from their debate.
MANILA, Philippines—After a holiday
hiatus, the Senate blue ribbon subcommittee will resume in January 2015 its inquiry
into the alleged anomalies in Makati City
during the mayoral term of Vice President
A new issue will also be raised against Binay, according to Sen. Antonio Trillanes IV.
The next hearing has been scheduled
for January 22, the second day after the
resumption of Congress sessions, subcommittee chair Sen. Aquilino Pimentel III confirmed in a text message on Sunday.
The session was originally scheduled for
J a n u - by Christopher Ryan Maboloc ary
Senate later moved it to give way to the
papal visit. January 15, 16 and 19 were declared special nonworking days in view of
Pope Francis’ visit in Metro Manila. The
Pope leaves for Rome on January 19.
Trillanes, speaking on dzBB, said the
subcommittee hearing would present a new
witness to testify on a new issue, but declined to provide further details.
“We will present new evidence, so the
people can see a new angle of the corruption
that Vice President Binay had committed,”
he said in the dzBB interview.
Trillanes said there would be another four
to five hearings on the Makati City issues,
which would run until April or May.
The senator said he would not be surprised
if Binay would withdraw from the presidential race later in 2015.
“I am not discounting the possibility that
he would back out because it would not be
the first time he would do such a thing,”
he said. “Even if he says he would push
through with his plans—I’ve heard that
before—I am not holding on to his word.”
Binay earlier backed out of a public debate with Trillanes that the Vice President
himself had called, prompting the senator
to disclose that Binay had also supposedly reneged on his word to provide support to Magdalo soldiers when they staged
a second attempt to overthrow the Aquino
administration in 2007, which has become
known as the Manila Peninsula siege.
Binay continues to be on top of surveys on
voters’ preference for president, although
his numbers have lately declined.
The drop in approval ratings followed the
conduct of the Senate subcommittee hearings, which had heard allegations from witnesses that Binay received kickbacks from
Makati’s infrastructure projects when he
was its mayor and used dummies to hide his
ill-gotten wealth, including a vast Batangas
estate and condominium units.
Binay and his spokespersons have denied the allegations and have branded as “a
farce” the Senate hearings being conducted
by political rivals. He said those were just
intended to bring down his high ratings in
Commenting on Binay’s ratings, Trillanes
surmised that the Vice President has been
able to stay on top because the issues over
his alleged corruption have not yet come to
the attention of most people, who have always been more concerned with their dayto-day problems.
Trillanes said he would not stop the probe
so that eventually, people would see Binay’s
true colors and think twice about voting him
for president in the 2016 elections.
He also said his original intention in calling for the hearing has been to find the truth
about the Makati City car park building
project, but other issues had turned up in the
“If you’re running for higher office, people
have to see what you’re made of so that
people would not be fooled,” he said.
No conditions for peace talks–Palace
MANILA, Philippines–Malacañang is not committing to
the release of two top officials of the Communist Party
of Philippines (CPP) as a condition to restart peace negotiations with its political arm, the National Democratic
Presidential spokesman Edwin Lacierda on Monday
noted that Benito Tiamzon and his wife, Wilma, were
facing criminal charges.
The couple, who were arrested in Cebu in March, are
facing multiple murder charges in connection with the
alleged killing of fellow communists whose mass graves
were discovered in Leyte.
Lacierda made clear the government’s position that
“there are no preconditions when it comes to talks.”
“Let’s see first if we can resume the talks and then let’s
make sure the talks are doable and time-bound before we
discuss anything else,” he told reporters.
Jose Maria Sison, CPP founding chair, earlier raised
the possibility of resuming peace negotiations with the
government, saying he was also willing to meet with
But he said the meeting “can still happen if there is
already a substantive agreement or if the meeting can be
inspiring, as a confidence-building measure.”
President Peace Adviser Teresita Deles said “friends of
the peace process have been shuttling between the two
parties to explore possible parameters for restarting talks
at the earliest time possible.”
“So far, feedback has been positive but there remain
matters to be clarified in order to ensure that, if ever we
do resume talks, it will not go the same way of an early,
major impasse that has happened too often in the past,”
she said earlier.
But just as both sides seemed open to resuming negotiations, the CPP, in a message on its 46th founding anniversary, said “(we) must support the people’s struggle to
oust the Aquino regime as a step towards the overthrow
of the entire ruling system.”
De Lima sacks 4 Bilibid
MANILA, Philippines–Justice Secretary Leila de Lima has relieved
four officials at the maximum security compound of the New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa
City after inmates surrendered approximately two
290 knives, 300
and assorted drug
the guards; Ricardo Sespene,
head of the special patrol unit;
head of the in- Justice Sec. Leila de Lima
services unit; and
Danilo Dador, officer in charge of
Supt. Richard Schwarzkopf Jr.,
NBI head, said the officials were
relieved after granting passes for
visitors without seeking the approval of the Office of Superintendent. These passes, he said, should
not have been issued.
Schwarzkopf did not identify the
recipients of these passes but media
reports quoted De Lima as saying
that she received information that a
starlet and prostitutes managed to
enter the NBP on Dec. 24.
De Lima led Bureau of Corrections officials in opening eight
boxes containing the surrendered
weapons, cell phones and other
The boxes were placed in the corners of the compound and the prisoners, following De Lima’s order,
contrab a n d
Christm a s
was extended to
A radio interview,
De Lima as saying that she was not
satisfied with the items found in the
“I have a gut feel that the [prison]
gangs still have in their possession
several weapons and illegal drugs and
that what they surrendered are the
weapons that they can no longer use,”
The contents of the boxes, according
to an inventory released by the NBP,
included firearms such as 14 improvised shotguns, an Uzi automatic pistol and other pistols and revolvers of
De Lima also said she created “cleanup oversight team” to rid the prison
compound of all weapons and contraband within three to four months.
(Cont. from page 1...TORTURED FILIPINA)
amade to work round the clock with little to
no food and feared for her life.
“I became so thin that I would break down
in tears when I saw myself in the mirror,” she
She claimed that she was only given water,
slices of bread or a pack of instant noodles to
last her the whole day.
She also alleged that her former employer
would sometimes starve her for two days.
When the employer’s husband bought her
food, Nenita said the woman would toss it into
the trash can.
“She deducted RM400 from my salary every month for my food and toiletries. She also
charged me for using the electricity and water,” Nenita said.
“She said that she was paying me a lot of
money and I had to earn everything she was
paying me for.
“She would wake me up at 5am and make me
clean each room for an hour.
“Sometimes I felt like collapsing because I
was so hungry but she would beat me with a
hanger or a stick or pour water on me.”
Nenita was brought out of the condominium
after neighbors called police last month, saying that the suspect had left the maid home
alone with a gash on her head.
Nenita said her former employer also attacked her with an aerosol spray can for apparently being dissatisfied with the way she
carried out her job.
On Friday, Nenita’s former employer pleaded guilty at the Petaling Jaya magistrate’s
court to hitting her and was fined RM4,000
and jailed for a day.
A spokesman of Nenita’s foreign worker recruitment agency, however, said the agency
would file a civil case against Nenita’s former
“We want to get justice for Nenita and make
this a lesson to employers to treat their maids
as humans,” he said.
Ex-national treasurer joins p
rotest vs Smartmatic
MANILA, Philippines–Former national treasurer Leonor Briones has joined several nongovernment groups who were strongly opposing the participation of automated polls system
Former National Treasurer Leonor Briones
provider Smartmatic in the Commission on
Elections’ (Comelec) bidding for the supply of
P2-billion worth of additional precinct count
optical scan (PCOS) machines and the P1.2billion refurbishing of old PCOS units for the
Briones told reporters she would go to court if
the Comelec awards the contract to the controversial company.
“We already had two elections using the Smartmatic system that is riddled with flaws… Why
are we going to get its services again? It has a
poor track record and it is facing so many complaints and legal issues,” she said in Filipino.
Briones said she had the unfortunate firsthand experience of handling the inefficient and
defective PCOS machines supplied by Smart-
matic, having been in the field in the 2010 and
She said she wonders why Comelec still patronizes the firm despite its alleged poor performance.
According to Briones, information technology (IT) experts were
convinced that the PCOS units were
prone to tampering. But the voting
machines were also considered to
have “zero value” three years after
they had been initially used and
they could no longer be repaired,
nor could parts be bought for replacement, she said.
Since the PCOS machines were already used in the 2010 presidential
polls, technically, they were over
three years old and can no longer be
repaired, she said.
This, she said, will be among the
issues she would raise should the
Comelec decide to award the deal to
Meanwhile, retired LingayanDagupan Archbishop Oscar Cruz
warned of possible “massive confusion and disorder” before and during the 2016 elections if Smartmatic
is allowed to handle the automated polls again.
“If Smartmatic wins the bidding, it would
again create a lot of suspicion. That would be
the outcome of that. There would be massive
confusion even before election day,” Cruz said
Citing questions raised by IT specialists and
observers of the 2010 and 2013 vote counts,
Cruz said, “they cannot swallow the counting
[procedures] of Smartmatic. Up to now, the issues remain unsolved.”
“As a registered voter and therefore, a participant to the 2016 elections, I will do my moral
and civic obligation by going to court to disqualify Smartmatic,” he said.
The Comelec’s Bids and Awards Committee
earlier declared that both Smartmatic and an-
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Thaw in ties seen
MANILA, Philippines–Of all
the possible tandems that have
been tossed around for the
2016 presidential elections,
would Mar-Chiz tick?
Sen. Francis “Chiz” Escudero has invited Local Government Secretary Manuel
“Mar” Roxas II to the reception of his wedding to actress
Heart Evangelista in February
in what some see as thawing of
On Roxas’ invitation, Escudero
turned up at the
party on Dec. 3 in
Could this be a
fresh start for a
leading to a teamup in 2016?
Despite the apparent thaw in
Escudero did not
seem to be keen on the idea of
running with Roxas for now,
although they have yet to announce their political plans.
Both have figured in the poll
surveys as potential presidential contenders.
As finance committee chair,
Escudero has been defending
the budget of Roxas’ department at the annual budget
deliberations, conferring with
Roxas each time.
This has given the impression
that they’ve regained their old
ties, but the public, even the
press, is apparently wrong
“Do you think I feel that
way [that we’re OK] again?”
Escudero said, letting out a
laugh. “It’s all part of work. I
defended his budget. We don’t
talk outside of that. We don’t
see each other outside of that
At the LP’s Christmas party,
Escudero said they greeted
each other. That was all.
Escudero said he invited
Roxas to the reception of his
wedding because “I consider
him a friend, although we’re
not as close as we used to.”
The coldness “is still there,”
he added in an interview at the
Senate before the holidays.
Escudero will wed Evange-
lista on Feb. 15 at the Balesin
Island Club in Polillo, Quezon, and they will hold their
reception at the Blue Leaf
Events Pavilion in Parañaque
City three days later.
Escudero and Roxas went
their separate ways in the
2010 elections, where Escudero backed then Sen. Benigno
Aquino III for president, and
opposition Jejomar Binay for
Aquino won but his running
mate Roxas lost to Binay.
Escudero said they used
to be close when they were
congressmen. At the House
of Representatives during the
Arroyo administration, Roxas
was majority leader while Escudero was one of his deputies.
As chair of the House rules
committee, Roxas took Escudero under his wings, the latter
Zamboanga City blast injures 2
ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines–Two persons sustained
minor injuries when a still undetermined type of bomb went off
at the main entrance of Deluxe
Videoke Bar along Tomas Claudio St. here around 8:14 p.m.
Supt. Ariel Huesca, spokesman
of the Zamboanga City Police
Office, said the incident happened in the same videoke bar
where two IEDs exploded in
November and injured K9 handler PO2 Franklin Enid.
Huesca said bomb experts were
still conducting a post-blast investigation to determine what
type of explosive was used in the
The investigation will also try
to determine if it was linked to
the November blasts.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Tax-Free Transfers to Charity Renewed
For IRA Owners 70½ or Older;
Rollovers This Month Can Still Count
WASHINGTON — Certain owners
by: Alvin C. Maglan, CPA (IRAs) have
a limited time
to make taxfree transfers
to eligible charities and have them
count for tax-year 2014, the Internal
Revenue Service said today.
IRA owners age 70½ or older have
until Wednesday, Dec. 31 to make a direct transfer of part or all of their IRA
distributions to an eligible charity.
The Tax Increase Prevention Act,
enacted Dec. 19, extended for 2014
the provision authorizing these qualified charitable distributions (QCDs).
The provision had expired at the end
of 2013. With this retroactive renewal,
any eligible IRA distribution during
2014 properly transferred to a qualified charity counts as a QCD.
As a result, older IRA owners once
again have a different way to give to
charity. An IRA owner, age 70½ or
over, can directly transfer, tax-free,
up to $100,000 per year to an eligible
charity. This option, first available in
2006, can be used for distributions
from IRAs, regardless of whether the
owners itemize their deductions. Distributions from employer-sponsored
retirement plans, including SIMPLE
IRA plans and simplified employee
pension (SEP) plans, are not eligible.
To qualify, the funds must be transferred directly by the IRA trustee to the
eligible charity. Distributed amounts
may be excluded from the IRA owner’s
income – resulting in lower taxable income for the IRA owner. However, if
the IRA owner excludes the distribution from income, no deduction, such
as a charitable contribution deduction
on Schedule A, may be taken for the
Not all charities are eligible. For example, donor-advised funds and supporting organizations are not eligible
Amounts transferred to a charity
from an IRA are counted in determining whether the owner has met the
IRA’s required minimum distribution
Where individuals have made nondeductible contributions to their traditional IRAs, a special rule treats
amounts distributed to charities as
coming first from taxable funds, instead of proportionately from taxable
and nontaxable funds, as would be the
case with regular distributions.
QCDs are reported on Form 1040
Line 15. The full amount of the QCD
is shown on Line 15a. Do not enter any
of these amounts on Line 15b but write
“QCD” next to that line.
Alvin Maglan is a CPA licensed in California and Nevada. After working for
SyCip, Gorres, Velayo and Company, he
emigrated to California and had varied
experiences as an audit manager of a regional accounting firm, an internal auditor
and controller of Dole, Inc., a fortune 500
company and three decades experiences as
a tax consultant for various individuals,
professionals, small business firms, corporations, partnerships, and other non-profit
entities. You may contact him @510 432
7438 for your tax problems. You may email tax questions @[email protected]
Tax Season Opens As Planned Following Extenders Legislation
WASHINGTON -- Following the
passage of the extenders legislation, the Internal Revenue Service
announced today it anticipates
opening the 2015 filing season as
scheduled in January.
The IRS will begin accepting tax
returns electronically on Jan. 20.
Paper tax returns will begin processing at the same time.
The decision follows Congress
renewing a number of “extender”
provisions of the tax law that expired at the end of 2013. These provisions were renewed by Congress
through the end of 2014. The final
legislation was signed into law Dec
“We have reviewed the late tax law
changes and determined there was
nothing preventing us from continuing our updating and testing of
our systems,” said IRS Commissioner John Koskinen. “Our employees will continue an aggressive
schedule of testing and preparation
of our systems during the next
month to complete the final stages
needed for the 2015 tax season.”
The IRS reminds taxpayers that filing electronically is the most accurate way to file a tax return and the
fastest way to get a refund. There
is no advantage to people filing tax
returns on paper in early January
instead of waiting for e-file to begin.
More information about IRS Free
File and other information about
the 2015 filing season will be available in January.
Income Tax Changes 2014 - 2015
In this article, we’ll continue the approach
we’ve taken in the past to explain the significant income tax changes in 2014. That discussion will include changes to Social Security
and Medicare, federal income tax standard
deductions and exemptions, mileage deduction rates, earned income credits, Hope and
Lifetime Learning tax credits, in addition to
changes to retirement accounts such as the
401(k), 403(b), IRAs, and Roth plans.
Federal Income Tax Filing Deadline
The filing deadline for the year 2014 is
15, 2015. Information appearing in
this article applies
to changes effective in 2014, which
then become part
of a taxpayer’s return in 2015.
Act of 2012, or
ATRA, added a
seventh federal income tax bracket
(39.6%) in 2013,
while the remaining six rates were unchanged. In 2014, taxable incomes above the following thresholds
now fall into the 39.6% bracket: Married
Filing Separately ($228,800), Unmarried
Individuals ($406,750), Head of Household
($432,200), and Married Filing Joint Returns
Capital Gains Tax
ATRA also made several important changes
to the treatment of capital gains, and eliminated sunset provisions, adding stability and
permanence to these rules:
Income Thresholds: individuals in the 10%
and 15% tax brackets will pay 0% on eligible
dividends and most capital gains.
Qualified Dividends: income received will
be taxed at the same rate as long-term capital
Tax Rate: individuals in the 25%, 33%,
and 35% federal income tax brackets will pay
15% on capital gains, while taxpayers in the
39.6% bracket will pay 20%.
Unmarried individuals (Single) with income
over $200,000 and Married couples filing
jointly with income over $250,000 will also
pay a 3.8% Medicare surcharge tax on investment income; thereby increasing the effective
rate on capital gains to 23.8% (20% + 3.8%).
t a x e d
2014, wages paid in excess of $200,000 for
Unmarried filers and in excess of $250,000
for Married filers will be subject to an extra
Social Security tax remains at 6.20%, while
the wage limit, or Social Security maximum,
increases from $113,700 to $117,000. The
Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) was
1.5% in 2014, raising the SSI limit to $2,642
ATRA also increased the estate and gift tax
rate from 35 to 40%. The gift tax and estate
tax exclusion continue to be indexed for inflation and increase to $14,000 (the same as
2013) and $5.34 million respectively in 2014.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Revel Backup Buyer Wants Price
Priority action needed
Cut by $8.4 Million: Bankruptcy
before you retire
f you are near your re- By Atty. Crispin C. Lozano many reasons since bankruptcy law is created.
tirement age, you must
act now or else you will find yourself
miserable during your “golden years” Question: Will the creditors take away my
security pension and retirement acor retirement period. Bankruptcy is a social
counts if I file bankruptcy?
great financial planning tool for those
who are within a few years from re- Answer: No. Social security checks and
tirement. You must prepare a financial retirement accounts such as IRA and 401K
plan for a debt free retirement so that are exempt from creditors up to $1.1 milyou will enjoy your golden years. Ask lion. Seniors who file bankruptcy will
come with fresh start without seeing a big
yourself these questions:
1. Will my retirement income be enough to
cover my daily expenses and medical bills?
2. Will I be carrying a mortgage that I cannot pay during my retirement?
3. Will my long term care cost and medicines be covered by my pension?
4. Will increases in cost of living and medicines be covered by my pension?
On the average, retirement income for seniors range from $800 to $1500 a month.
This income does not increase to cover the
ever increasing cost of living and medicines. Long term care cost and medicines
will not be covered by the monthly pensions of seniors if they do not have any
savings or 401K pension plan. There are
seniors who are still carrying a mortgage
and putting all their money on it in anticipation of an increase in value of real estate.
This is the worst kind of money management. Real estate values are still going
down and no sign of it increasing in the
It is unimaginable that you will be depending on your monthly pension and still
owing a lot of debts. The best time to plan
for retirement is now. If you have no way
of supporting your daily expenses because
of debts then it is time to consider filing for
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. You can discharge
most of your unsecured debts by filing
Chapter 7 Bankruptcy. Many people especially those close to retirement are stressed
out because of all their financial obligations. You do not have to put yourself in
this very miserable situation because of
debts. You worked hard for so many years
to have a comfortable retirement and you
deserved it. You can retire debt free if you
want. There is nothing to be ashamed of
in filing bankruptcy. It is made into law
to give people a chance to start fresh and
be free from past obligations. Many millionaires are also filing for bankruptcy for
(Cont. from page 1... SEARCHERS..)
bright blue plastic suitcase, completely unscratched.
“I know the plane has crashed, but I cannot
believe my brother and his family are dead,”
said Ifan Joko, who lost seven relatives, three
of them children, as they traveled to Singapore
to ring in the new year. “We still pray they are
First Adm. Sigit Setiayanta, commander of the
Naval Aviation Center at Surabaya Air Force
base, told reporters six corpses were spotted
about 160 kilometers (100 miles) from Central
Rescue workers descended on ropes from a
hovering helicopter to retrieve bodies. Efforts
were hindered by 2-meter (6-foot) waves and
strong winds, National Search and Rescue Director SB Supriyadi said.
The first body was later picked up by a navy
ship. Officials said as many as six others followed, but they disagreed about the exact number.
Supriyadi was on the aircraft and saw what
appeared to be more wreckage under the water,
which was clear and a relatively shallow 20 to
30 meters (65 to 100 feet).
When TV broadcast an image of a half-naked
man floating in the water, a shirt partially covering his head, many of the family members
screamed and wailed uncontrollably. One middle-aged man collapsed and had to be carried
out on a stretcher.
Their horror was captured by cameras on the
other side of windows into the waiting room.
Officials blacked out the glass later Tuesday
Around 125 family members were planning
to travel Wednesday to Pangkalan Bun to start
identifying their loved ones. Body bags and coffins have been prepared at hospitals there. Dozens of elite military divers will join the massive
search. They were desperate to search the water
ahead of approaching rough weather.
Malaysia-based AirAsia’s loss comes on top
of the still-unsolved disappearance of Malaysia
Airlines Flight 370 in March with 239 people
aboard, and the downing of Malaysia Airlines
percentage of their retirement income to be
paid to creditors. Any penny saved from
paying creditors goes into your retirement.
Note: This is for presentation purposes
only and not a legal advice.
1. Bankruptcy will actually improve your
credit within one year because your unsecured debts are discharged. Although the
bankruptcy will be in your records for 10
years, not filing bankruptcy will make your
credit even worse until most your debts are
2. If you are being sued by your creditors,
most money judgment can be eliminated in
3. Collection actions continue and you can
be sued if you are in debt settlement.
4. Chapter 7 will eliminate all unsecured
debts. If you are near retirement age, you
must eliminate most of your debts.
5. Bankruptcy will stop foreclosure actions. If your trustee sale date is 10 days
before, you can still file for bankruptcy.
6. If your salary is being garnished, you
have a court case about debts or you are
being harassed by creditors, bankruptcy
can stop garnishment, court cases, harassing creditors and eliminate the debt.
7. Bankruptcy is cheaper, faster and safer
than debt settlement which has no guaranteed success.
8. Preserve your health, eliminate stress
and live a happy life by eliminating your
debts which is the root of all problems.
Crispin Caday Lozano is an active member of the State Bar of California, the
American Immigration Lawyers Association and the National Association of
Consumers Bankruptcy Attorneys. He
specializes in immigration law and bankruptcy law.
Flight 17 in July over Ukraine, which killed all
298 passengers and crew.
Nearly all the passengers and crew were Indonesians, who are frequent visitors to Singapore,
particularly on holidays.
Haidar Fauzie, 60, said his youngest child and
only daughter, Khairunnisa Haidar, was a flight
attendant who had worked with AirAsia for two
On learning about the crash, he struggled to
console his grieving wife. They last saw their
child six weeks ago, when she returned home
“From the start, we already knew the risks associated with being a stewardess,” Fauzie said.
“She is beautiful and smart. It has always been
her dream to fly. We couldn’t have stopped her.”
AirAsia group CEO Tony Fernandes, the airline’s founder and public face and a constant
presence in Indonesia since the tragedy started
unfolding, said he planned to travel to the recovery site on Wednesday.
“I have apologized profusely for what they
are going through,” he said of his contact with
relatives. “I am the leader of this company, and
I have to take responsibility. That is why I’m
here. I’m not running away from my obligations.”
The jet’s last communication indicated the
pilots were worried about bad weather. They
sought permission to climb above threatening
clouds but were denied because of heavy air
traffic. Four minutes later, the jet disappeared
from the radar without issuing a distress signal.
The plane’s cockpit voice and flight data recorders, or black boxes, have yet to be recovered. Scott Hamilton, managing director of
aviation consultancy Leeham Co., said in a post
on his website that autopsies may provide some
of the earliest clues about what happened.
“If death was due to blunt-force trauma, this
could suggest passengers were alive upon im-
pact with the water,” he wrote. “If death
came from other circumstances, this could
suggest an explosive decompression and
in-flight break up occurred.”
The back-up bidder for Revel AC Inc., now
having the right to buy the shuttered Atlantic City, New Jersey, casino, wants the
bankruptcy judge to cut the $95.4 million
purchase price by $8.4 million in view of
alleged improprieties in the auction process.
The purchase price for the casino’s assets
should be $87 million, not the $95.4 million offered by Glenn Straub’s Polo North
Country Club Inc. at an auction, Polo North
said in a Dec. 24 court filing.
N o r t h
a f t e r
Brookf i e l d
to buy the
in Camden, New Jersey, approved the sale
to Brookfield, the judge anointed Straub as
the backup bidder to buy the project at his
last offer of $94.5 million if the higher sale
fell through, which it did.
A hearing on the sale is scheduled for Jan.
5, when Straub wants the court to cut the
Straub said his original cash bid of $90
million should be the starting point for
calculating his purchase price. Next, he
wants a $3 million break-up fee applied to
the purchase price because the estate is receiving a “significant” financial benefit by
retaining Brookfield’s $11 million deposit.
If the judge won’t give Straub the property for $87 million, his papers might be
read to mean he wants the judge to hold
another auction, returning his deposit in
Separately, Revel and Atlantic City
reached a settlement where the casino will
pay the city $26 million to resolve a dispute over 2014 real estate taxes. In return
for a $5 million reduction in real estate
taxes that otherwise would be owing for
this year, the casino will pay the modified
The settlement and the tax payment avoid
and a 6
w e n t
is scheduled for
at a hearing tomorrow.
At tom o r row’s hearing, Revel will ask for an increase in availability under its bankruptcy
loan from Wells Fargo Bank NA (WFC)
to cover the tax payment. Revel said it
also needs a larger loan to fund operations
through the Jan. 8 final-approval hearing.
The Revel hotel and casino, which opened
in April 2012, filed its second petition for
Chapter 11 protection in June. The petition was accompanied by a proposed plan
based on a sale. Revel said the plan must
The new case is In re Revel AC Inc., 14bk-22654, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District
of New Jersey (Camden). The prior case
was In re Revel AC Inc., 13-bk-16253, in
the same court.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
How can a seaman adjust status?
any seamen came to the United States
and married a U.S. citizen spouse but
they could not adjust their status to that of
permanent resident. The first question to
Do they have Sec. 245(i)
eligibility? If they are the direct or derivative beneficiary of a petition or labor certification dated April 30, 2001 or earlier and
they have been in the U.S. since December
21, 2000, then they can adjust status.
However, if they have no Sec. 245(i) eligibility, then the other avenue is the latest
immigration procedure of PROVISIONAL
WAIVER. This provisional waiver will allow the following aliens who are married
to U.S. citizens to seek waiver of unlawful
presence and be able to go to their home
country to apply for green card. To qualify, they must prove extreme hardship to
the U.S. citizen spouse or parents if their
application for permanent residence is denied. The beneficiaries of this provisional
waiver will include:
1. Seamen who entered the U.S. on a C or
D visa and overstayed their visa and are
not beneficiaries of Sec. 245(i).
2. Those who entered without inspection
and are not beneficiaries of Sec. 245(i)
3. Those who entered as Fiancée and did
not marry the visa petitioner.
4. Those aliens who have lost their passports and have no proof of legal entry to
To be eligible for a provisional unlawful
presence waiver you must fulfill ALL of
the following conditions:
1. Be 17 years of age or older.
2. Be an immediate relative of a U.S. citizen (not a preference category immigrant
who has a visa available). An immediate
relative is an individual who is the spouse,
child or parent of a U.S. citizen.
3. Have an approved Form I-130, Petition
for Alien Relative, or Form I-360, Petition
for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant.
4. Have a pending immigrant visa case with
DOS for the approved immediate relative
petition and have paid the DOS immigrant
visa processing fee.
5. Be able to demonstrate that refusal of
your admission to the United States will
cause extreme hardship to your U.S. citizen spouse or parent.
6. Be physically present in the United
States to file your application for a provisional unlawful presence waiver and provide biometrics.
7. Not have been scheduled for an immigrant visa interview by DOS before January 3, 2013.
8. Meet all other requirements for the provisional unlawful presence waiver, as detailed in 8 CFR 212.7(e) and the Form I601A and its instructions.
You are not eligible for a provisional unlawful presence waiver if any of the following conditions apply to you:
1. You are subject to one or more grounds
of inadmissibility other than unlawful
2. DOS initially acted before January 3,
2013, to schedule your Immigrant Visa
(IV) interview for the approved immediate
relative petition upon which your provisional unlawful presence waiver application is based, even if your immigrant visa
interview has been canceled, you failed to
appear for the interview, or your interview
was rescheduled on or after Jan. 3, 2013.
Note: The date and time that you are scheduled to appear for your immigrant visa interview at the designated U.S. Embassy or
Consulate is not the date USCIS will use to
determine if you are eligible to file a Form
(Cont. from page 1... SENIANG KILLS..)
The highest death toll was reported from
Barangay (village) Mercedes in Catbalogan, Samar province, where a landslide
buried two vans on a mountainside highway, Mayor Stephanie Uy-Tan told radio
“The rains were really strong and people
thought the storm won’t be too strong
based on the news,” Tan said. “Rescuers
reported hearing voices from the rubble,”
she said. Tan feared that the toll of lives
could still rise.
According to the Associated Press,
flash floods and landslides triggered by
Seniang left at least 31 people dead and
seven missing, including in areas still recovering from last year’s Supertyphoon
I-601A. If DOS initially By Atty. Crispin C. Lozano Violence against Women
acted before January 3,
2013, to schedule your
16. On May 12. 2014, we
immigrant visa interview, you are not eli- received an approval from USCIS of green
gible to file a Form I-601A, even if you card under the same sex marriage law and
failed to appear for your interview or if the corresponding waiver of certain misyou or DOS cancelled or rescheduled your representation.
interview for a date on or after January 3, 17. On April 21, 2014, we received an ap2013.
proval of green card after the denial was
Instead, you may file a Form I-601, Ap- appealed to the Board of Immigration Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inad- peals.
missibility, from outside the United States
after you have been interviewed for your
immigrant visa, and the consular officer
has found that you are inadmissible for a
ground that may be waived.
3. You are in removal proceedings that
have not been administratively closed.
4. At the time of filing, you are in removal
proceedings that have been administratively closed but have been placed back on the
EOIR calendar to continue your removal
5. You do not meet one or more of the requirements, as outlined in the Form I-601A
and its instructions.
Note: This is not a legal advice. The Law
Office of Crispin C. Lozano has the experience and expertise in helping clients apply
for provisional waiver.
1. On December 17, 2014, we received an
approval from USCIS of a green card under the Violence against Women Act.
2. On December 16, 2014, we received an
approval of DACA for an alien who has a
final order of removal.
3. On December 11, 2014, we received an
approval of immigrant visa for an alien
who entered the U.S. as a seaman under
Provisional Waiver Program.
4. On October 7, 2014, we received an approval from the U.S. Embassy in Manila
an immigrant visa for a client who entered
the US without inspection under the Provisional Waiver Program.
5. On September 26, 2014, we received an
approval from the Immigration Court for
waiver of misrepresentation for a client
who entered as single but actually married
at the time of entry to the U.S.
6. On September 9, 2014, we received an
approval from Immigration Court of adjustment of status for a client who was previously denied an asylum.
7. On September 8, 2014, we received an
approval from USCIS of Form I-601A provisional waiver for two clients.
8. On September 5, 2014, we received an
approval from USCIS for Fiancée visa
based on same sex petition.
9. On September 4, 2014, we received an
approval of DACA for a client who has
problem in her birth certificate.
10. On August 28, 2014, we received an
approval of green card based on spousal
11. On August 25, 2014, we received an
approval of green card based on same sex
marriage with big age difference.
12. On August 1, 2014, we received an
approval of waiver of joint filing of I-751
based on spousal abuse. With the approval
she was granted permanent residence.
13. On July 21. 2014, we received an approval of green card based on marriage that
was initially denied due to inconsistencies
in interview response.
14. On July 19, 2014, we received an approval of I-751 removal of condition on
residence waiver based on battered spouse.
15. On June 11, 2014, we received an approval from USCIS of green card under
“Yolanda” (international name: Haiyan).
Inquirer bureaus reported 8 deaths
in Rondo town in Cebu province; 5 in
Tanauan and 4 in Mahaplag, both in Leyte
province; 4 in Loon and Baclayon in Bohol province; 1 each in Tobias Fornier in
Antique province and San Francisco in
Cebu and 1 in Butuan City. Two fatalities
were earlier reported in Monkayo, Compostela Valley, and in Compostela town.
However, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council put the
death toll at only 21, its executive director, Alexander Palma, said.
At least 19 others were reported missing as of Tuesday afternoon, including
a pump boat that disappeared en route
from Barangay San Roque in the Southern Leyte coastal town of Macrohon to
Crispin Caday Lozano is an active member of
the State Bar of California, the American Immigration Lawyers Association and the National Association of Consumers Bankruptcy Attorneys. He specializes in immigration law and bankruptcy law. He
earned his Juris Doctor at Western State University
College of Law in Fullerton, California. He is also
a Certified Public Accountant, a Real Estate Broker
and a Bachelor of Business Administration Cum
Laude graduate. He has offices in San Francisco,
Hayward, San Jose, and Cerritos, California. You
can contact him at 1-877-456-9266. Email questions
to [email protected]/. Visit our website at
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
US Immigration Reform Appears
Unlikely in 2015
HOUSTON, TEXAS— Over the span of
several U.S. election cycles, there have
been calls for comprehensive immigration reform to fix a system that people on
both sides of the political spectrum agree
is broken. But some observers say President Barack Obama’s recent executive action aimed at temporarily shielding some
undocumented foreigners from being deported may have doomed his longer-term
goal of forging a
allows some four
million undocumented residents in
the United States
to seek temporary
legal status. But
he cannot achieve
comprehensive immigration reform.
Republicans, who won majorities in both
houses of Congress in November’s midterm elections, replied through Speaker of
the House, John Boehner.
“Instead of working together to fix our
broken immigration system, the president
says he is acting on his own,” he said. “That
is just not how our democracy works.”
Tony Payan, Director of the Mexico Center at Rice University’s Baker Institute,
says Obama’s action will help a lot of
people come out of the shadows and “essentially, become a little more integrated,
in a legal, formal sense, into the American
economy and the American society.
“But it was also very counterproductive
because I feel that it polarized many of the
Republicans who might have been willing to do something on immigration,” he
While some undocumented immigrants
support the move, others have mixed feelings about what they see as a temporary fix.
Payan says there are concerns about applying for legal status under this temporary
“Once they surrender their personal information to the government, once the government knows who they are and where
they are and if the next president is not
willing to extend that temporary protected
status, then they are going to be found very
quickly and to be denied,” he said.
Republicans say they want to secure the
border with Mexico before approving other
i m m i grants at
Republ i c a n s
also oppose Democratic proposals for a so-called
“pathway to citizenship,” which they see
as a ploy to increase the Democratic voter
But Houston immigration attorney
Charles Foster says most immigrants seek
legal resident status, not full naturalization.
“If you look at the last big legalization
bill signed by President Reagan, in the last
40 years, barely 30 percent have even gotten around to applying for citizenship,” he
Foster says the immigration issue has divided the Republican Party.
“While the business community is very
supportive of immigration reform, there is
a very vocal wing of the Republican Party
that is adamantly against everything,” said
Analysts say it may still be possible for
the Republican-controlled Congress and
President Obama to achieve agreement on
at least some parts of immigration reform
next year, but that full reform is more likely to be delayed until after the 2016 presidential election.
Graham: 2016 hinges on immigration
Washington (CNN) -- If Republicans
don’t wield their congressional majority next year to pass immigration reform
legislation, a GOP takeover of the White
House in 2016 will be “difficult, if not impossible,” Sen. Lindsey Graham of South
Carolina said during a CNN interview released on Sunday.
Graham, a Republican who has longfavored comprehensive immigration reform, said he believes the GOP has hurt
itself with Hispanic voters due to its resistance to reforming the current system.
And without a major change, Democrats
will get another four years in the Oval Office, Graham told CNN’s Dana Bash on
“State of the Union.”
“If we don’t at least make a down payment on solving the problem and rationally dealing with the 11 million [illegal
immigrants believed to be in the U.S.], if
we become the party of self-deportation in
2015 and 2016, then the chance of winning the White House I think is almost
non-existent,” he said.
But Graham, who is mulling a 2016
presidential run, slammed President
Barack Obama’s executive action last
month to safeguard as many as 5 million
undocumented immigrants. He accused
the President of “acting in a rogue fashion” for “political reasons.”
Republicans, though, need to “do more
than just fight the executive order,” he
Graham supports giving a pathway to
citizenship to the so-called DREAMers
-- undocumented immigrants who crossed
into the U.S. illegally as children and have
lived in the U.S. since. And in 2014, Graham showed the political viability of his
position by successfully beating back a
tough primary challenge in his conserva-
tive state by reaffirming -- rather than running away from -- his stance on immigration.
“If the Republican Party cannot muster the political courage to deal with the
DREAM Act children in a fair and balanced way after we secure our border, that
says a a lot about the Republican Party’s
future regarding the Hispanic community,” Graham said. “I don’t believe most
Americans would fault the Republican
Party if we allowed children who have
been here since they’re babies to assimilate into society with a pathway to citizenship after we secure our borders.”
Graham was one of the most ardent supporters of a bipartisan immigration bill he
helped negotiate in 2013 that passed the
Senate but did not get a vote in the House.
The bill would have bolstered border security and created a path to citizenship for
millions -- many of whom are now getting
temporary relief under Obama’s executive
And while Graham’s name didn’t make
the cut in the latest CNN/ORC poll, another candidate who supports immigration
reform is leading a crowded field of potential Republican presidential candidates.
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush snagged
23% of Republican support in the survey
While Graham said Bush would be “an
excellent candidate” who could win the
presidency in 2016, he insisted the race
for the Republican nomination is still
“It’s like preseason polling in football.
You really don’t know, do the pads connect? But I think it’s good news for Jeb
Bush at least initially,” Graham said.
Food and medication insecurity
tied to poor diabetes control
People without reliable sources of food and
medicine are more likely to have poor control over their diabetes, compared to those
without such concerns, according to a new
Researchers found the likelihood of a person having poorly controlled diabetes increased by about 39 percent for each of the
insecurities they reported.
“What we found is
that food and medication are a big deal
and probably account for the bulk
of it, but it doesn’t
look like there is
any one thing,” said
Dr. Seth Berkowitz, the study’s lead
author from Massachusetts General
Hospital in Boston.
- about 9 percent of
the U.S. population
- have diabetes, according to the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention.
Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes and is often linked to obesity. In type 2
diabetes, the body’s cells may be resistant
to the hormone insulin, or the body may
not make enough of the hormone. Insulin
gives blood sugar access to the body’s cells
to be used as fuel.
There’s been speculation that the 2010
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act
– better known as Obamacare – would increase access to healthcare for people with
diabetes, Berkowitz and his colleagues
write in JAMA Internal Medicine.
People with low incomes may not benefit
as much from that increased access, they
add, because getting more healthcare services does not mean also having access to
food, medications and other items needed
to control diabetes.
For the study, the researchers used data
collected from June 2012 through October
2013 from 411 people with diabetes at clinics and health centers in Massachusetts.
Massachusetts expanded healthcare access years before the rest of the country.
“I think what we’re looking at in Mas-
sachusetts is where the rest of the country
will be in a few years,” Berkowitz said.
Most of the participants had insurance,
about 46 percent of the participants had
uncontrolled diabetes and about 40 percent
reported some sort of inability to get food,
medicine or other necessities.
Specifically, about 28 percent reported
not taking their medicines because they
couldn’t afford the drugs. About 14 percent
said they couldn’t pay their utility bills,
about 20 percent said they didn’t have reliable access to food and about 11 percent
said their housing situation wasn’t stable.
Food and medication insecurities were
tied to poor control over diabetes, the researchers found.
For example, about 64 percent of those
who reported an unstable food supply had
uncontrolled diabetes, compared to about
42 percent of those with food security.
While housing and energy insecurities
were not tied to worse diabetes control,
the study found that people with an overall
greater number of insecurities had greater
odds of being less in control of their diabetes.
“I think it lets us know that even if we nationwide - achieve the rate of insurance
coverage in Massachusetts, these problems
will still likely exist,” Berkowitz said.
He added that the problem is likely beyond
the healthcare system to solve, because the
new research showed people with these insecurities were visiting their doctors.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
REP. HONDA AND KOREAN PRESIDENT PARK MEET ON BUSINESS TIES BETWEEN REGIONS
~ TRIP INCLUDED MEETINGS WITH US/KOREAN BUSINESS LEADERS, KOREAN OFFICIALS, US TROOPS ~
San Jose, CA – Congressman Mike Honda (D-CA17) and South Korean President Park
Geun-hye met in Seoul on Friday, December 19, to discuss enhancing the economic,
cultural, and security partnership between Silicon Valley and Korea. The discussion was
part of a five-day trip by the Congressman to meet with business and government leaders
in Korea to enhance the relationship between the two regions.
“I love what President Park has been doing for the people of Korea,” Congressman
Honda said. “It was an honor to meet with her and discuss how Silicon Valley and Korea
can benefit each other through trade and diplomacy. I appreciate that she took the time to
discuss these vital issues with me.”
During the 30 minute, one-on-one meeting, the two also discussed the path for reunification of the Korean peninsula and Korea’s pan-Asian relations, including those with Japan.
President Park and Rep. Honda agreed that the first step to reunification is increased
family visits between North and South Korea. They also agreed that Japan’s relationship
with Korea, and the rest of Asia, cannot completely move forward until Japan takes full
responsibility for their army’s actions in World War II, and apologizes for the sexual enslavement of over 200,000 women, known as “Comfort Women.”
CONGRATULATIONS ROY. Roy Adriano, son of Menar and Mildred Adriano of San Jose
California poses with friends as they celebrate the college graduation of Roy. Roy is with
girlfriend Giselle Cortes. In photo is Minister of the Gospel Brother Mar Nucup and family
and some other guests.
GLOBAL FILIPINO NETWORK. After a successful presentation of the Speaker Series provided by Power Ng Pinoy, some of the participants pose for a souvenir photo. The presentation was held at the Stanford University with Arnold Pedrigal, Vivian Z Araullo, Anthony
Rivero, JR Calanoc, Marla De Castro Rausch, Anne O Ramirez, Carla Sia, Don Orozco,
Manny Valencia, Nel Messersmith, CJ Jocson and a whole lot more.
I DO. Regina Mariano exchange “ I DO’s” with long time fiancee Mark Baldo. The wedding
ceremony was held at the Cathedral Basilica of St Joseph in San Jose California. In photo is
maid of honor April Joy Mariano, younger sister of Regina and is also set to get maried in
On this trip, the Congressman delivered a keynote policy address at the Asan Institute. He also met with Korea’s Foreign Minister, Yun Byung-se; the Korean International
Trade Association (KITA); the Presidential Committee for Unification Preparation; the
American Chamber of Commerce – Korea; SK T.um, a large Korean telecom provider
with a significant Silicon Valley presence; U.S. Ambassador Mark Lippert; the Northeast
Asian History Foundation; and the Ministry of Trade, Industry, and Energy. Also on the
trip was a visit to the War Memorial of Korea, a meeting with US troops stationed at
Yongsan Garrison, and a visit to a House of Sharing where surviving Comfort Women
live. The Congressman’s full itinerary, with details on each meeting, is below.
“I have learned so much about Korea, its industry, its government, and its people on this
trip,” Congressman Honda said. “I am glad that I was able to tell them about the great
opportunities for investment in Silicon Valley, and find ways to remove barriers that limit
trade between us.”
“The US-Korean friendship is one of our country’s strongest and most important,” he
added. “I am honored that their government invited me.”
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Don’t Fall in Love With the
Finding a home is a lot like finding the your true
love. Love makes your heart skip a beat. Your feet
immediately start to spin around the empty living
room and imagine yourself entertaining grandly as
you waltz through the dining room. And by the time
you get to the master bedroom, well….it’s love.
But if you’ve ever been in a bad relationship, you
know it can start with that head over heels feeling.
You remember that feeling. It’s the one that makes
you do stupid things that you regret later, like blithely overlooking flaws you wouldn’t have put up with
if you were in your right mind.
When you go shopping for homes, remember that
you’re vulnerable. Cupid may strike with his bow
when you least expect it, causing you to fall in love with the wrong house.
Oh, that won’t happen to me, you say. But it can.
You’re a fool for love. If you want to keep your head
and get the home that’s really right for you and your
household, follow these tips:
Shop Within Your Means
The wrong house will be too much trouble and money. Your lender will give you a price limit that you
can comfortably afford based on your income and
current debts. These are time-tested formulas that are
designed to protect you from getting overextended
and putting the bank’s investment in jeopardy.
Look online and you’ll fall in love with a home out
of your league. You’re welcome to look at homes online, but try to stay in your price range. If you look at
homes that are more expensive than you can afford,
you’re bound to fall in love with more luxuries and
space than you can comfortably afford. Share your
wish list with a real estate professional, and let him
or her preview homes for you.
Shop for the right-sized home, not the biggest
The wrong home is too big. While conventional
wisdom says buy the most home that you can for the
money, buying the biggest home you can isn’t smart.
Think about the operating costs of heating, cooling,
cleaning and maintaining more square footage than
you really need. Instead, think about how you actually use a home. Have a use for every space.
Real Estate In Paradise - Purchase or Rent?
If you’re sick and tired of
the dreary modern city life
back at home, perhaps it’s
time to take the plunge and
make some thorough changes in your everyday routines.
In case you’re brave enough,
you may decide to move the
house or city, and if that’s
not enough of a change to do
the trick for you, you may
even consider a more daring
step like moving to a different country. If you’re adventurous and eager to travel,
learn and grow, Thailand
is the best place to move to
and settle down in – and it
has lots of accommodation
options and apartments to let
which you can check out online and choose the perfect
one to call your new home.
There’s certainly no shortage of carefully furnished
flats and lavishly equipped
houses that can be rented
at a relatively low price in
Thailand, but if you want to
add a dash of extravagance
to your new residence and
make a fresh start in grand
style, you may consider
purchasing a gorgeous villa
on the coast with a beautiful view of the ocean and an
infinity pool to go with it. If
you have set your mind on
a life in the lap on luxury in
the middle of Thailand, the
list of available lodgings can
all be seen here – among
a range of four-, five- and
six-bed villas with scenic
ocean views and tastefully
designed poolsides, there’s
certainly one that is built
precisely after your taste.
If you want to give life in
Thailand a go but are unwilling to dive right in and
purchase a new full-time
residence in the country, you
can try renting a house or
apartment for a while until
you make up your mind on
whether to invest in a longterm home in the country.
Renting is a better option for
modern-day nomads who
don’t want mortgage and
a truckload of heavy home
items to keep them tied
down to a city or country.
The offer of tastefully furnished apartments in Bangkok and the rest of the country is huge and diverse, so
shouldn’t have any problems
finding a temporary lodging
that fits your budget and
needs best, even if you’re
just looking to stay around
for a couple of months.
Purchasing real estate in
Thailand is relatively simple
and involves relatively few
red tape queues. Check out
one of the Bangkok-based
property websites on the internet and find a house or flat
that fits your budget, then
make the contact and get
yourself the house of your
dreams. There are a number of one-, two, three- and
multiple-room lodgings in
Bangkok with a highly reasonable price tag available
online so if you’re after affordable real estate deals in
Thailand’s capital, you’re
bound to get a good bargain
with just a bit of patience,
browsing and well-timed
Moving country is a daring step that requires a lot
of careful planning, flexibility and cautious selection. There are many things
to bear in mind during the
transition process, a few
loose ends that need to be
tied back at your old home
and a number of subsequent
lifestyle adjustments which
you’ll probably have to
make before you settle down
in your new environment
once and for all.
Choosing a Double Agent:
A Builder and a Realtor In One
Shopping around for a real estate agent to
assist you with all of your buying and selling needs can be a stressful task if you’re
not sure what you’re looking for. While
the right real estate agent should have
in-depth market knowledge, a reputation
for consistency and a friendly demeanor
– there are other things to consider when
choosing the right agent that best fits your
circumstances. Specifically, working with
an agent who is also a licensed builder can
surely eliminate some stress and cost to
your real estate transaction!
Many buyers walk through a home and
immediately create a check list of improvements they’d like to make if they
decide to move in. Whether it is tearing
down a wall or adding a sunroom off of
the living room- most new homeowners
will make some sort of renovation within the first year. In recent years, an open
floor plan is most desirable for buyers and
given that many antique or older homes
have more separation between each room
– many are interested in making these
common adjustments when considering
Your real estate agent will be able to
give you a more accurate price point to
what your renovations and improvements
might cost in addition to referring to you
to reputable builders, inspectors, and other tradesmen. This will offer you a more
accurate price-point before the inspection
to help you decide whether or not this is a
good investment for you.
For the Sellers:
Sellers who work with an agent who
has this skill can be coached through improvements and projects that may need to
be considered prior to putting their home
on the market. Your agent will be able
to look at the home objectively and spot
some concerns an inspector might have
while also evaluating the condition of the
home and what may turn away buyers.
This will help to sell for the highest price
possible and as quickly as possible!
When a real estate professional has
building experience and maintains their
builder’s license, you are given the opportunity to look at a home from a different
perspective. These agents are able to take
their knowledge and look at a home in the
eyes of an inspector – which can save you
time and money!
Le’Veon Bell’s status uncertain
PITTSBURGH -- An MRI did not reveal there he’s going to be,” quarterback Ben
any ligament damage to the knee that Roethlisberger said after the Steelers’ win
Pittsburgh Steelers running back Le’Veon over the Bengals, “because that’s how he
Bell injured Sunday night in a 27-17 win is.”
over the Cincinnati Bengals, a source told
Rookies Dri Archer and Josh Harris are
the only other
on the Steelers’
ter, and the two
considerhave 19 carries
and 56 rushing
if he is
had a 59-yard
Saturrun against the
back because of
a holding penRavens,
Bell left the
said, makgame Sunday
night with a
knee after takquestion- Le’Veon Bell left the Steelers’ win over the Bengals on Sunday night ing a direct hit
at after taking a direct shot on his right knee from safety Reggie Nelson. on his right knee
the primeBentime AFC wild-card game at Heinz Field.
gals safety Reggie Nelson fol“I know if there is a chance he can be out lowing a 19-yard catch in the
Bulls go for 7th straight
win at Indiana
The Chicago Bulls are the hottest
team in the Eastern Conference
at the moment with a season-high
six straight wins and will pay a
visit to the Indiana Pacers Monday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
The Bulls have won nine of
their last 10 games and posted
a 107-100 victory over the New
Orleans Pelicans on Saturday, as
Jimmy Butler scored 33 points
and Derrick Rose added 19. Aaron Brooks and Taj Gibson scored
13 and 12 points, respectively,
with Gibson adding 10 rebounds.
“We got a lot of easy baskets.
As a team, we rebounded the ball
well and we got into the open
court,” Butler said. “We got a
lot of layups. When we’re playing like that we’re really hard to
Butler is averaging 26.3 ppg in
his last six games.
Chicago shot 46.1 percent and
scored 23 points off 15 New Orleans turnovers.
Reports: Giants to retain Coughlin
Despite the club’s
loss campaign since
2004, the New York
Giants have apparently decided to retain long-time head
coach Tom Coughlin.
on Monday stated
that the Giants will
have the 68-year-old
on the sidelines for
one more season.
Following a 34-26
home loss to the
Eagles on Sunday,
New York finished
2014 with a 6-10 record.
Coughlin has a record of 96-80 during his
11-year run with the Giants, a tenure that
has been highlighted by a pair of Super
Bowl titles. They have not made the playoffs since 2011 and made just one postseason appearance in the past six years.
Coughlin has the second-longest tenure in
Giants coaching history, behind only Steve
Owen’s 24-year stint from 1930-53. His 96
wins trail only Owen’s total of 153.
In 19 years as an NFL head coach, including eight with the Jacksonville Jaguars,
Coughlin has amassed a record of 164-140.
He also has a postseason mark of 12-7.
One at heart:
The union of Dingdong and Marian
Dingdong Dantes waited for this day for years, Marian from her parents and the ceremony
but when he was only minutes away from lay- commenced.
The atmosphere was serene and blissful.
The couple’s entourage and guests were both
keen to witness and participate in what is
dubbed as the wedding of the year.
Dingdong and Marian Rivera rather had a
traditional Catholic wedding.
Eight bishops and seven priests concelel a s t
brated the sacrament of holy matrimony with
Most Rev. Honesto Ongtioco, DD, Bishop of
t h e
m o Most Rev. Teodoro Bacani, DD reminded
the couple to love each other eternally and to
offer their lives to one another in his homily.
The rite of marriage followed. Finally
l o n Dingdong and Marian exchanged their “I
d a y,
Royal Couple tied the knot and started their
forever at the Immaculate Conception Caa n d
sighs reDingdong waited in anticipation. He was
calm yet at the same time restless.
A little past 3 P.M., the door that led to the
altar opened. And there at the middle was
the blushing bride, the Kapuso Primetime
w i t Queen a few moments before becoming
t h e
The moment was ethereal as the bride
mesmerized their guests in a crystal-studDingded French lace white gown created by
d o n g
world-renowned fashion designer Michael
a n d
Her beloved Lola Francisca accompanied
Riveraher, and then her parents Francisco Javier Mr. & Mrs. Dantes
Gracia and Amalia Rivera joined her as
they are royally meant to be. Congratulations to
Near the altar, Dingdong graciously received the Kapuso Primetime King and Queen!
Billy Crawford and Coleen Garcia’s sweet
escape in Maldives
“Who said Maldives is
beautiful? Cause what I’m
staring at is way more beautiful! #bosslady #maldives
These are the words Billy
Crawford stated in the caption of his beach photo with
girlfriend Coleen Garcia.
Last December 26, the
couple flew to Maldives for
their much-awaited holiday vacation. Billy further
shared via Instagram how
thrilled he is to be spending time with the love of his
“All our bags are packed
we’re ready to go! So happy
to travel with the best gift I
got for Christmas. That’s
you love! Merry Christmas
to us and a happy vacation
@coleengarcia I love you
very, super, insanely,” said
Billy, referring to his girlfriend Coleen.
In a previous interview with
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal),
Billy and Coleen revealed that they are
planning to stay in Maldives for a week.
“Yeah, this is the first time [na mag-out
of the country na kami lang]. Just looking
forward to spending time with her, just
resting, and relaxing days [kami sa Maldives],” said Billy.
Coleen also shared what makes their trip
to Maldives different from their previous
vacation in New York and Japan.
“I tell him this, everytime we go on
vacation, it’s always so busy that I end
up coming home being more tired than
when we left Manila. Like in New York,
Japan, parang ang daming nangyayari sa
agenda. Now, it’s so different because all
that were gonna be doing is relaxing. No
plans. No nothing,” she beamed.
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Katrina Halili back on the cover of FHM
Katrina Halili is starting the New Year with a
The sexy Kapuso star graces the cover of
FHM’s January 2015 issue, her first since giving birth to daughter Sofia Nicola in 2012. In
2006 and 2007, Katrina was named by the mag-
azine as its Sexiest Woman in the World.
“This cover is more of a reminder, hindi lang
para ipakita sa iba, pero para sa sarili ko na rin.
It’s a reminder to take care of myself more,” she
Katrina Halili on FHM Cover
‘Bonifacio’ producer slams
Bonifacio lead actor Robin Padilla
doesn’t mind losing the coveted Metro
Manila Film Festival (MMFF) Best
Actor trophy to English Only, Please’s
Derek Ramsay, even while cameramen,
expecting he’d get the award, rushed
to where he (Robin) was seated minutes before the winner was announced
at the PICC Plenary Hall on Saturday,
“Happy na siya sa Youth Choice Award
na nakuha ng Bonifacio (which got
Picture),” Robin’s manager
Betchay Vidanes told
star has been
youth as the
hope of the Robin Padilla
He did not talk to the press who waited to get his statement and exited at the
backstage after the awards rites.
The film’s producer, Rina Navarro,
did not share Robin’s feelings, however.
Navarro questioned why ‘Bonifacio’
won Best Picture but lost in the Best
Actor, Best Actress and Best Director
She let off steam in her Facebook post.
“Hanggang ngayon si Andres Bonifacio ay dinadaya pa rin. Salamat sa
awards. Nakakapagtaka lang na ang
best picture hindi nanalo ng best actor
and actress and director. And it is really
painful to say that despite this success
there are real traitors in this country
who will slap you in the face, celebrate victory with your competitors
to hurt other people. Tejeros convention 2014! And how is that na si Robin
Padilla pa ang pinag announce nila ng
am RINA NAVARRO and I
am not afraid of
the truth. ROBIN and DIREK
ENZO ang aking pagbibigay
respeto sa galing niyo. Alam
ng tao ang totoo
at lalabas ito.
Roy and Josel
hands up to the
design. To the
reveal the truth.
This status is
my own decision. GOD BLESS US
Earlier, Robin told the audience at the
PICC that ‘Bonifacio’ has earned only
P10-million so far, a long way off from
its staggering budget of P100-million.
He appealed to everyone to go to the
theaters and watch the biopic, which
also stars Vina Morales, Daniel Padilla,
Jasmine Curtis, Isabel Oli, RJ Padilla,
Cholo Barretto and others and is directed by Enzo Willliams.
Vice Ganda on grandpa’s death: Patay na yung puso ko
Comedian-TV host Vice
Ganda is devastated over the
passing of his grandfather
Gonzalo Dacumos, who died
on Christmas Day, December
25 at 93.
Dacumos reportedly suffered
from renal and respiratory
The “It’s Showtime” host,
who is very close to his grandfather, confirmed the news
on his Twitter account. Vice
Ganda revealed that the old
man, whom he calls ‘Santa
Clause’, loved him unconditionally.
“’Santa Clause’ is the greatest man. I’m so thankful to
‘Santa Clause’ because I love
him so much. I’m so sad right
now because ‘Santa’ died on
Christmas Day,” he said during the eulogy, which was
shown in “The Buzz.”
Vice Ganda grew up under Dacumos’ care when his
mother worked abroad.
“Alam ko sa sarili ko na
proud siya sa akin, kaya ginagawa ko ang lahat para
maging proud siya. I’m sure
proud siya. Sinigurado ko
na bago siya mawala, proud
Dacumos’ remains was cremated on Sunday, December
Last full show
Vice Ganda admitted during the eulogy that he doesn’t
know how to carry on, now
that his grandfather is gone.
“Hindi ko alam kung naririnig nyo ba ako or nakikita nyo
ko, kasi kung nakikita nyo ko,
ibig sabihin, nakakakita kayo
ng multo. Kasi hindi ko alam
kung buhay pa ako ngayon.
Hindi ako sigurado. Paano
ako magiging buhay eh patay
na yung puso ko. Ang alam ng
utak ko patay na ang lolo ko.”
Vice Ganda feels blessed his
grandpa saw how successful
his grandson’s Metro Manila
Film Festival (MMFF) entry
“The Amazing Praybeyt Benjamin,” is.
“Nakakatuwa kasi bago siya
umalis, he made sure na I was
number one sa MMFF this
year. Nanuod muna siya bago
siya umalis. Nanuod siya ng
last full show.”
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
*PROMO FOR FIRST TIME ADVERTISERS:
Only $40 for 4 issues (Classified Section - 6 liner) and $60 for 4 issues (Coupons Section)
To advertise, call (510) 885-8827 or
email us at [email protected]
4-bedroom, 270 sq meter
For more info, contact
Mike at 707-389-0114
HOUSE AND LOT?
Major Credit Cards
LAND 11 HECTARES
ALL TITLED, GOOD FOR
RESORT / MUST SELL
HAIR CUT STATION
*120 young carabao mango trees
harvesting approx. P1.5/ year.
*3 Bed home surrounded with
cashew trees, guavas,
calamansi, coconuts, etc.
*1/4 Hectares tilapia fish pond
approx. income of
P80,000+ a year.
*1/2 Hectares rice plantation
harvesting 100 sacks/ year.
*Close to Olongapo City, Subic
Hanjen Castillejos, Zambales
*Asking price is P15M or
$645,000 or BO
Susan (408) 930-4377
Hair Cut Station to rent.
$600 / month
Call (510) 895-1963
FOR SEAFOOD CITY /
MUST LIVE IN UNION CITY,
MILPITAS OR SAN JOSE
AREA. *W/ PER HOUR &
for Residential Care
Facility for the Elderly
located in Elk Grove,
Call (916) 505-1933
CALL US AT
LINCOLN TOWN CAR
w/ bar & TV port.
Good for Limo business.
$3,000 or BO.
Call 650.290.0542 for
CARDS & COUPONS
TRAVEL TOUR PACKAGES
BUS TOURS of Orchid Farms, Gardens, Historical Sites, etc. from $80.00.
CRUISES - round-trips from San Francisco or LA, CA to Mexico ($550.00), Canada ($250.00),
Hawaii ($1,449.00). Fascinating tour onto the life Pope Francis in Argentina and
learn it’s history and role of the church on its culture, society; and their famous tango
(land /tour w/ some meals $2,950.00).
FOR MORE INFO PLEASE EMAIL US AT [email protected]
All prices are for double occupancy and subject to chage. CST 2099748
COMPUTER SERVICE AND
* TFC IPTV (Authorized Agent)
*Sales: Mobile Phones * Service & Accessories
* Computer Repair
* DVD Movie Sales (Filipino)
* Phone Card Sales, * Pinless Phone Cards
*For Rent Magic Sing Microphone -
VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT
Requires 2 week reservation.
Tel: (510) 324-8553
Fax: (510) 397-3545
31852 Alvarado Blvd. Union City, CA 94587
Located inside Dollar Star Store.
GAMES & ENTERTAINMENT
To solve a Sudoku puzzle, place a number into each box
so that each row across, each column down, and each
small 3x3 square within the larger diagram (there are 9
of these) will contain every number from 1 through 9. In
other words, no number will appear more than once in any
row, column, or smaller 3x3 square. Working with the numbers already given as a guide, complete each diagram with
the missing numbers that will lead to the correct solution.
(Answers for Crossword and Sudoku on page 15)
1. Hwy. safety
5. Breakfast roll
game with 32
14. Italian town
15. Shout for
16. Roman wrap
17. Church Lady
19. Dutch city
with a cheese
21. Make feeble
27. Lion, by
32. Honshu bay
42. Dental photo
43. Carolina rails
45. Heat, as milk
47. “If ___ told
48. Hot spot
51. Early shrink
54. “Twin Peaks”
55. Spanish city
58. Pop’s Khan
66. Word processing
70. Runs through
71. “____ Tread
1. Earned, as
2. Run ___: pay
after the last
3. 007’s film debut
4. Talk-show talk
5. Mgr.’s college
6. Opposite of
“Dep.” on a
7. Was philanthropic
9. Cake features
10. 1982 N.L.
Rookie of the
11. It might help
you get the
12. Kind of marble
18. Bounce (off)
22. Softens by
28. “But there ___
29. In the area
30. Ukase, e.g.
31. Swear on â€” of
35. Chicago paper,
actress on TV:
39. Excavation sites
41. __ May
44. A great clan, in
46. Sweet, to Ovid
49. Signs of hunger
50. Use the guillotine
51. “By me”
52. Mead research
53. Social historian
57. The “A” of
59. Pain: Comb.
60. Jerome who
65. What the “H” of
VIEW ALL OF OUR
PAST WEEKLY ISSUES AT
Aries March 20 - April 18
Aries, your lighthearted attitude has given
you a reputation as an eternal teenager. But
levity is also a sign of a very wise person, a
person who knows how to laugh at their wisdom. Whether you realize it or not, you can
get involved in a serious relationship without
losing your lightheartedness.
Taurus April 19 - May 19
What changes have there been in your life
since this time last year? Think about the
events that have taken place. What have
you accomplished? What decisions have
you made? And most importantly, how much
you have grown as a person? Try to make
changes by following your intuition.
Gemini May 20 - June 19
It may be upsetting to you, Gemini, but
there’s something you need to think about.
You should finally get it through your head
that the people you often call “brilliant” are
only reflections of you.
Cancer June 20 - July 21
What a great day for you! You seem to have
the innate listening abilities of a therapist or
counselor. Everyone comes to you with their
problems or to cry on your shoulder. They
know that you will listen without judgment.
Leo July 22 - August 21
If at first you don’t succeed, try, try again.
This is your maxim for the day, Leo. What
have you done lately to improve the way
you live your life? Would you consider taking
off on some wild adventure without looking
back? Today you may meet some people
who will make you want to.
Virgo August 22 - September 21
Strength of character will be your partner today, Virgo. You seem to have an aura whose
intensity scares some people and attracts
others. Your force of character could be the
cause of some wonderful feelings and emotions for the people close to you.
Libra September 22 - October 21
What an extraordinary day for you, Libra!
The dynamic energy in the air will help
you set new personal goals. The positive
feedback you get from the people around
you could inspire you to make some lifechanging decisions for the good of you and
Scorpio October 22 - November 20
You can start your day without all the usual
planning. Be free to discover your day as it
unfolds. This might feel like it’s against your
nature, but it’s good for you to enjoy life’s
sometimes arbitrary nature every once in a
Sagittarius November 21 - December 20
In general, you tend to be critical of the way
the government and politicians handle social
issues and institutions. Your goal isn’t just to
criticize, however. You would also like to
see some positive changes in these areas.
Capricorn December 21 - January 18
Capricorn, you may have felt as if something
has been changing in your family environment over the last few weeks. Today you
will find out what’s been going on. Someone close to you has been going through
some important changes in his or her life.
Aquarius January 19 - February 17
You tend to think of yourself as a lone warrior, Aquarius. Today your efforts over the
last few weeks pay off. You’ve found your
place in a group of people. You may even
call it a family. You now have a place to
come home to, whether it’s to celebrate your
victories or lick your wounds.
Pisces February 18 - March 19
You love the creative process, Pisces. Even watering
your plants or painting a picture will give you a feeling
of joy. If this month you get a chance to finish a project
that you really care about, you will be satisfied with
the results. And you will be surprised to see people
react positively. It’s OK to be proud of yourself.
HOW TO PLACE AN AD IN FIL-AM POST:
Please have this info ready: Company Name, Contact Person, Contact Numbers &
Please include Company Name, Contact
Person, Contact Numbers & Complete
Address. Artwork should be attached.
How December broke the ice on sales
he notion of cars as holiday gifts sprang from the
imagination of an ad agency
more than a decade ago. But
in recent years, many of the
industry’s marketing minds
have enthusiastically embraced it -- and so have car
Together, they have helped
turn December, once a
for U.S. auto
one of the top
selling periods, year after year.
to be 2014’s
a feat since
this December has only
weekends rather than five.
TrueCar is forecasting December industry sales of just
more than 1.5 million light
vehicles, which would place
this month behind May’s 1.61
million, August’s 1.59 million and March’s 1.54 million
-- all of them considered key
months for auto sales.
“We now see sales congregating around three epic selling seasons,” said John Krafcik, TrueCar’s president.
The first occurs in March
and late spring, and the second quickly follows in the
“The period that stretches
from Black Friday to New
Year’s has emerged as the
third blockbuster period,”
This pattern of heavy selling in the final weeks of the
year, when shoppers were
traditionally camped out at
the mall, is largely a result
of automaker marketing and
increasing emphasis on yearend deals as automakers compete for sales bragging rights.
In 2000 and 2001, December
was just the 10th-best month
of the year (January is almost
always last), but a shift was
afoot. Lexus had started its
“December to Remember”
ad campaign in 1998, and it
got noticed. By 2000, Lexus
had passed Mercedes-Benz
to become the industry’s topselling luxury brand, and its
December bonanza was a big
reason why: Lexus was regularly selling more cars in December than any other month.
Mercedes and BMW then
began year-end events of their
own, and the volume brands
soon followed. The idea of
giving a car as a Christmas
gift went from being an ad
agency conceit to a regular
occurrence: Plenty of dealers
started delivering cars with
big red bows on top.
Now, the whole industry
tends to gear up for big December sales events, said
John Mendel, executive vice
president of sales for American Honda.
“December is going to be
really strong for us,” Mendel
said. These days, “there are
two months you can always
count on: One is August and
the other is December,” he
Well, maybe not always.
Automakers and dealers that
bet heavily on December face
one key risk: Mother Nature.
Whether it’s in the import and
luxury markets of the Northeast, Texas truck territory,
or the Detroit 3 strongholds
in the Midwest, bad winter
weather can clog dealer lots
and kill the shopping mood.
Case in point: 2013. After
the industrywide meltdown in
2008, December finished as
the best or second-best sales
month in each of the next four
years. Last year, however, the
month started with record low
temperatures in the West, ice
storms in Texas and heavy
snow in the Northeast and
Upper Midwest. December
ended up as the fifth-best
month for auto sales.
Krafcik noted that carmakers increasingly are trying to
turn the post-Thanksgiving,
Black Friday retail craze -which usually focuses on TV
and electronics deals -- into
a car-buying event and are
tying it into their Christmasthemed marketing.
This year, Lexus launched
its December to Remember
commercials a week before
Thanksgiving. Buick ran humorous Black Friday promotions.
Year-end sales also give automakers a second shot at moving out older model year vehicles still hanging around after
the August clearance sales,
and a chance to promote new
2015 cars and trucks. Now,
Ford has its aluminum-body
F-150 to promote, and Mercedes is pushing its 2015 C
class, Toyota the heavily reengineered Camry and Honda
its hot-selling new CR-V.
With some brands, it’s easy
for consumers to find deals.
month, it is running a “sign
and drive” event offering new
wheels for no money down,
no first-month payment and
no security deposit.
Jeff Williams, owner of Williams Auto World, a Volkswagen-Audi-Subaru dealership
in Lansing, Mich., said, “We
are going to do a lot of business this month -- a lot.”
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015
Diesel’s premium grows,
shuffling fuel economy
A S H I N G TO N
gasoline prices have
shaken up some of the
mathematical calculations that made diesel
an attractive alternative fuel for efficiency-minded
But industry insiders
and analysts say diesels offer key advantages that make them
less sensitive than hybrid vehicles to fuelprice swings.
Diesel fuel has long
been priced at a premium over gasoline.
Thanks to the pronounced drop in gasoline prices over the
past six months, that
premium has grown
to nearly 80 cents per
gallon as of last week,
the widest spread
since 2008, according
to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. A year earlier, the
spread was just more
than 50 cents.
Diesel prices have
fallen, too, but not
nearly as fast as gasoline. As a result, diesel
buyers have a tougher
time squeezing out
enough fuel efficien-
cy gains to offset the
added upfront cost of
a diesel powertrain,
which can amount
to thousands of dollars over the cost of a
like hybrid shoppers,
tend to do more research before they
make a purchase,”
said Dave Sullivan, an
analyst with AutoPacific. “When the math
doesn’t make sense,
these savvy consumers tend to either buy
something else or wait
to see what happens.”
The dynamic is important to watch,
especially for European brands such as
which have made diesel powertrains a core
part of their lineups.
But while the latest
have been positioned
as fuel economy leaders, analysts say, core
buyers are attracted by
other attributes, such
as higher torque, longer driving range on a
tank and, in the case of
trucks, better towing
Jan 1, 2015 - Jan 7, 2015