Tonight: Cloudy and quite mild with rain after midnight. An overnight low from 55 to 60. A southwest wind at 10mph.
Wednesday: Cloudy and cooler with periods of rain. Especially in the morning. High in the low 60s but falling into the upper 40s lower ... More...
Chattanooga Named Code for America City
Chattanooga was named as a Code for America (CfA) Fellowship City Tuesday. CfA will provide at least three fellows for a year, beginning in January 2014. City staff and local developers will work with the CfA fellows to develop and test open-source web apps to improve city services and the community around two of the City’s key priorities – safer streets and civic engagement
“City Government will collaborate with some of the top developers and designers from across the country, creating open-source web applications to help address important issues in our community - including public safety,” said Mayor Andy Berke. “I am committed to a more open, transparent, and innovative government – and opening up data is an important way to make government more accessible to our citizens.”
"We are thrilled to officially announce that Chattanooga will participate in our 2014 Fellowship program." said Code for America Co-Executive Director Bob Sofman. "Chattanooga has a remarkable commitment to innovation and is supported by forward-thinking and dedicated staff. This top-notch combination ensures a productive year.”
In addition to focusing on public safety and civic engagement, the Fellows will help to improve the City of Chattanooga’s internal processes, including the procurement process, by working with City departments to develop and determine effective solutions that use tax payer dollars responsibly.
Since 2009, CfA has paired leaders in innovation with local governments, using technology to promote openness and transparency, encourage participation, and solve problems in cities across the country. Together, CfA fellows (top developers, designers, researchers, and product managers) and local governments produce open-source web apps to improve city services. CfA also helps build relationships between City Hall and local technology talent.
“Having Code for America come to the Gig City makes so much sense. Chattanooga has a strong history of civic action and innovation, as well as a new Administration that understands how open data can benefit citizens,” said Tim Moreland of Open Chattanooga. “From the start, Mayor Berke has been supportive of Open Chattanooga's efforts to solve real problems using open data. So when Code for America arrives in Chattanooga, they will find a Mayor, a city, and a community ready to roll up their sleeves and make lasting change.”
Early this summer, the Berke Administration partnered with Open Chattanooga to apply for the fellowship for 2014 and the City of Chattanooga was named a finalist last month. The City secured $250,000 in private funds from the Benwood Foundation and Lyndhurst Foundation. Chattanooga City Council authorized the funding of an additional $180,000. Several private companies have expressed an interest in contributing to the project, including through both
in-kind and monetary contributions.
"We are thrilled to be named a Code for America City. This initiative asks the important question, 'How can technology make our community better?',” said Sarah Morgan, President of the Benwood Foundation. “When we inspire the brightest tech-minds across the country to focus not on the private sector but the public sector, we can address some of our community's most pressing issues."
“Chattanooga is a natural fit for Code for America. This opportunity will not only complement our city's focus on technology and innovation, it will more importantly connect developers with the resources they need to solve real world problems through open data and civic engagement," said Macon Toledano, Associate Director of Lyndhurst Foundation.
The 2014 class of Fellows will include 31 developers, designers, researchers, and project managers leaving private companies such as ZipCar, Intuit, and Lockheed Martin as well as government organizations such as NASA.
Over 50 cities across the country applied for the Code for America Fellowship this year. The 2014 Code for America Cities include:
Long Beach, CA
San Antonio, TX
San Juan, Puerto Rico
Warwick, RI (in collaboration with the State of Rhode Island)
Past CfA Fellowship Cities include Chicago, Boston, Philadelphia and New Orleans.
To learn more, visit http://codeforamerica.org/2014.
More Business News
Last Update on March 11, 2014 17:17 GMT
WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. wholesale businesses in January suffered their steepest sales drop in nearly five years, yet they continued to increase their stockpiles. This suggests that companies expect the economy to roar back after experiencing an abrupt winter slowdown.
The Commerce Department says wholesalers boosted stockpiles 0.6 percent in January from December. Rising stockpiles boost economic growth because they reflect increased production at factories, a sign that wholesalers anticipate a stronger economy.
But sales tumbled 1.9 percent in January. That's the largest decline since March 2009, when the economy was in recession.
Heavy snowfall and bitter cold struck much of the United States in January, causing shoppers to stay at home and retail sales to fall 0.4 percent that month.
Still, wholesale businesses have seen sales rise 3.9 percent year-over-year.
WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. employers advertised slightly more jobs in January than in December, a sign that hiring should remain steady in coming months.
The Labor Department says employers posted 3.9 million job openings, up 1.5 percent from December. That is still below November's nearly six-year high of 4.1 million, the first month that openings topped 4 million since March 2008.
The job market may be emerging from a winter slump. Employers added 175,000 jobs in February, the government said last week. That was much higher than in December and January, when cold weather lowered job growth.
Total hiring slipped 0.9 percent to 4.5 million in January. That hiring total might sound like a lot, but in a healthy job market, roughly 5 million people are hired each month.
DETROIT (AP) -- A congressional committee is investigating the way General Motors and a federal safety agency handled a deadly ignition switch problem in compact cars.
House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton of Michigan says the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration received a large number of complaints about the problem during the past decade. But GM didn't recall the 1.6 million cars worldwide until last month.
Upton says the committee will hold a hearing soon. He says the committee wants to know if GM or the agency missed something that could have flagged the problems sooner.
An Associated Press review of driver complaints to the agency found some dating to late 2005. GM admits it knew of the problem in 2004.
LOS ANGELES (AP) -- California's Department of Motor Vehicles is wading into the complex question of how to regulate the use of cars that rely on computers -- not people -- to drive them.
Once the stuff of science fiction, "Driverless cars" could be commercially available by decade's end.
On Tuesday, the DMV is hearing ideas on how to integrate the cars onto public roads. Questions range from data privacy and security -- to whether a person will have to be in the driver's seat at all.
The DMV already has drafted rules governing how companies can test the technology. Google had been testing on highways and in neighborhoods well before the Legislature decided to regulate.
HEPATITIS C DRUG-COST
WASHINGTON (AP) -- An innovative hepatitis C drug that was only recently hailed as a breakthrough treatment is facing skepticism from some health care experts, as they consider whether it is worth the $1,000-a-pill price set by manufacturer Gilead Sciences.
A panel of California medical experts voted Monday that Gilead's Sovaldi represents a "low value" treatment when compared with older drugs for the blood borne virus. The vote was part of a broader review of new hepatitis C drugs by the California Technology Assessment Forum. The insurer-affiliated group assesses the costs and effectiveness of new medical treatments.
The group estimates that replacing currently used hepatitis C drugs with Gilead's Sovaldi would raise California drug costs between $18 billion and $29 billion per year. The drug costs $84,000 for one 12-week course of treatment.
MEN'S WEARHOUSE-JOS A BANK
NEW YORK (AP) -- It's time to suit up: Men's Wearhouse is buying Jos. A. Bank for $1.8 billion.
Men's Wearhouse Inc. will pay $65 per share, a 5 percent premium to Jos. A. Bank Clothiers Inc.'s closing price Monday of $61.83.
The agreement ends a months-long back and forth that began in October when Jos. A. Bank offered to buy its larger rival for $2.3 billion. Men's Wearhouse scoffed at that offer, and turned the tables, offering to buy its rival for $1.54 billion.
By early March Men's Wearhouse had an offer of $63.50 per share on the table but said it may raise the bid to $65 per share if some conditions were met.
The combined company will be the fourth-biggest U.S. men's clothing retailer with more than 1,700 U.S. stores and about $3.5 billion in sales.
The transaction is expected to close by the third quarter.
DHAKA, Bangladesh (AP) -- Inspections of Bangladesh garment factories under a new safety initiative have found cracked support beams, substandard building materials and exposed electrical cables chewed by rats.
The pact funded by mostly European fashion brands plans to check some 1,500 garment factories in Bangladesh this year.
The first round of reports released Tuesday covered just 10 factories. They were chosen to be inspected first because they had multiple floors. The Bangladesh Accord Foundation that is overseeing the safety pact said 250 more inspections will be completed by the end of March.
The safety pact was formed after a garment factory in Dhaka collapsed last year, killing more than 1,100 people. The Rana Plaza disaster highlighted unsafe conditions for many of the 4 million workers in Bangladesh's garment industry.
PARIS (AP) -- A leading international economic body is warning global growth is likely to remain sluggish as a slowdown in the developing world undercuts gains in Europe and the United States.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says in an update to November's World Economic Outlook that developed economies are suffering a temporary slowdown, mainly due to one-time factors like the harsh winter weather in North America. But it said the underlying trend is one of growth.
The OECD said that emerging markets, by contrast, "are experiencing a marked loss of momentum."
In its report Tuesday, the OECD, a think tank for the world's most developed economies, predicts global growth of 3.5 percent this year from an estimated 2.7 percent last year.
BRUSSELS (AP) -- European Union countries again failed to agree on a key policy to fight tax evasion due to resistance from tiny Luxembourg.
EU taxation Commissioner Algirdas Semeta said Tuesday's failure was "disappointing" because the legislation on an EU-wide automatic exchange of information on interest gains from bank deposits would allow governments to "identify and chase up tax evaders."
The decision requires unanimity among the EU's 28 countries. Luxembourg's Finance Minister Pierre Gramegna said his country could not yet vote in favor, asking for the matter to be decided by next week's summit of EU leaders.
Luxembourg insisted for years it would only agree once financial hubs that aren't EU members, like Switzerland, also sign up. It frets that EU rules might be more stringent than upcoming international standards.
ATHENS, Greece (AP) -- Greek tax inspectors are being offered anger management classes after the government said they would have to continue enforcing a deeply unpopular emergency tax.
The government last year extended the tax on property owners, initially collected on electricity bills with the threat of disconnection for those who didn't pay. The tough conditions fueled protests, even from the tax inspectors themselves.
Trifonas Alexiadis, deputy leader of the National Association of Employees at State Financial Services, said Tuesday that inspectors were being offered places at four-hour seminars funded by the European Union.
He described the classes as "unnecessary" and "juvenile," arguing that the time would be better used training employees to offer digital services.
Greece has been raising taxes and cutting spending to stave off bankruptcy and keep receiving international rescue loans.
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