AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMoreAs companies like Amazon, Walmart, and Target begin to dazzle us with the growing possibility of same-day delivery, it’s becoming harder for small businesses to compete in ways that provide the same speedy delivery without relying on high-emission forms of commercial storage or transportation options like renting space in large warehouses and air delivery.That is all now changing thanks to an organization called Ohi—a US-based warehousing and delivery service that allows small businesses to offer speedy, sustainable delivery options.Speaking with Fast Company, Ohi CEO Ben Jones detailed the problem that many small US businesses face when attempting to compete with nationwide distributers. “The problem that we’re solving for is that consumer expectations for e-commerce are getting faster and faster, driven primarily by Amazon, but also now by Walmart, by Target, and by all these other big brands enabling same-day delivery,” said Jones.RELATED: LEGO is Now Offering to Pay For You to Ship Your Unused Bricks to Children in Need“For smaller brands, it’s almost impossible for them to do that at low cost. If we’re going to build a replacement that will last for the next 60 years, we have to have sustainability as one of our core values.”From Seed to SproutOhi’s service allows small, growth-stage companies to expand their network of fulfillment centers across the United States in a unique way that saves money and energy.Since a small business might have only one pallet’s worth of product in any given city, Ohi allows them to expand their next- and same-day delivery capabilities by renting out space in “micro-warehouses” in unused office building spaces and retail parks.MORE: CEO Who Raised the Minimum Salary of His Employees to $70K is Now Doing It All Over AgainThe micro-warehousing means that brands can avoid the much higher environmental costs of maintaining traditional warehouses or offering next-day or two-day shipping on a plane. This also eliminates the much higher costs of long-term leases and fees associated with air travel.Reducing WasteOhi’s clients are also able to ensure sustainable next- and same-day shipping by cutting out various forms of middle men and extra steps between storage.“When you’re not throwing parcels around between various trucks in between the different distribution centers, you eliminate the need for a cardboard box,” said Jones.CHECK OUT: Canadian Credit Card Holders Are ‘Over the Moon’ With Chase Bank’s Decision to Forgive Outstanding DebtIf you order something from one of Ohi’s clients, it may be delivered to you on a bike, rather than from a truck—and it may be delivered in a in a recyclable cardboard bag rather than a cardboard box.Jones also said that this sustainable alternative to the standard fulfillment protocol has helped reduce cardboard, plastic, and paper waste associated with packaging and shipping by 75% compared to if Ohi used standard fulfillment practices.The service is currently only based out of New York City and Los Angeles, but the company hopes its success will help to expand their platform to other US cities within the next few decades.Be Sure And Share The Exciting News With Your Friends On Social Media…AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to EmailEmailEmailShare to RedditRedditRedditShare to MoreAddThisMore
Forum attendees enduring a lack of air conditioning after a power outage from a storm the morning of the forum.Six candidates seeking the Democratic nomination for the Kansas Third Congressional District seat in the U.S. House of Representatives gave their take on the country’s major issues and how to solve them.Democrats and supporters gathered Saturday afternoon in the auditorium of Shawnee Mission Unitarian Universalist Church to hear from each of the candidates at the forum, which was hosted by the group Swing Left. Despite the power loss and lack of air conditioning caused by an early-morning thunderstorm, the room was packed for nearly two hours while supporters greeted the candidates and heard their political stances on topics including climate change, healthcare, social security funding and campaign finance laws.Here’s a summary of the priorities the candidates discussed.Sharice DavidsHoping to bring diversity and a new voice in Congress, Davids spoke of “changing the face of Kansas politics.” Davids said she would sponsor the bill to expand and improve Medicare, but she stressed the need to elect a president who will actually sign it. She supports funding schools in an equitable way and investing in preschool education opportunities.“As somebody who spent time in transportation, I will fight tooth and nail to get us to invest in our infrastructure so that we can have the pathways to opportunity,” Davids said. “because transportation touches every aspect of our lives.”Davids recommends protecting Social Security by electing new members of Congress. She added that the phaseout of Social Security is “troubling” because people who make less money end up paying more into their Social Security than others who make six figures. She also spoke against recognizing corporations as people with First Amendment rights and looking into publicly financed elections.Mike McCamonWith experience in the tech and nonprofit sectors, McCamon stressed the need for all elected officials to know when to stand their ground and when to compromise in order to accomplish things. McCamon said he would advocate for the U.S. to have half of all of its energy by renewable resources by 2030 and to outlaw gasoline- and diesel-powered automobiles “entirely.”Citing the complex issue of healthcare, McCamon said he would seek realistic options by first advocating to negotiate better prices with Medicare and also provide freedom of choice in healthcare options. Funding Social Security and Medicare are important, but constituents in the 3rd District are concerned about accountability and transparency issues around the budgeting, McCamon said.“I think the thing we’re all sick and tired of is the gridlock in Washington,” McCamon said, adding that he would work with other members of Congress to resolve the issue and fund Social Security.“It’s very simple to see that Social Security should be well funded; it’s your money. It’s not an entitlement,” he said.McCamon would also like to see candidates “go on a diet” by limiting their campaign spending, especially in the primary election.Tom NiermannAs an educator with concerns about gun violence and healthcare, Niermann emphasized the importance of electing a middle-class officer to represent the middle and working classes. Niermann recommended taking the lead on climate change as a global issue by ending subsidies and tax incentives for the fossil fuel industry — and use that money to encourage renewable energy sources such as wind power.He also supports universal healthcare, citing massive debts by Americans who are still paying for healthcare. He recommended equity in public education “because that is the basis for opportunity;” and he said he would advocate for federal funding for infrastructure projects.The first step in addressing campaign finance law issues is to reverse the U.S. Supreme Court ruling on Citizens United, which allows corporations to have unlimited political spending.“That court case allows billionaires and corporations to purchase legislators, and I think our current representative is a classic example of a legislator who has been purchased by billionaires,” Niermann said, adding that he hopes to take the money out of politics.Jay SidieBased on his previous experience running for the Third Congressional District seat in 2016, Sidie recommended seeking votes from unaffiliated voters who are less engaged with politics than Democrats or Republicans. Sidie wants to push economic efforts for green energy and remove subsidies tax breaks for the nonrenewable energy industry. He said he thinks fixing America’s healthcare problem is not that complicated because “other countries are doing it very successfully.” The key is driving costs down without upheaving the whole system.Sidie said he believes income and equality are major factors that touch every facet of American opportunity, such as education and healthcare. He supports Social Security, and “to pull the rug out at this stage of their lives is deplorable.”“If I’m elected to Congress, I’ll make sure I fight for the people that deserve their Social Security — because it’s just horrible that we’re even talking about it,” Sidie said. “There’s ways to fix it. It wasn’t that Social Security was a problem; they just spent your money. They’ve spent the money on unfunded wars and given tax breaks to rich people. Why should the people that put all that money in pay for those mistakes? It can’t happen, not on my watch.”Sidie also suggested designing publicly funded elections.Brent WelderAn advocate for workers’ rights and the underserved, Welder spoke of his experience working with President Barack Obama and former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry. Stressing that “science is real,” Welder believes “unfettered corporate greed” causes climate change.“The giant corporations, the billionaires, that do not care about you, that do not care about your children, would rather poison our drinking water, would rather poison the air that we breathe, than to spend a little bit of money to be able to dispose of their waste in an environmentally conscious way,” Welder said.He also said he would support universal healthcare, a $15 minimum wage, debt-free college and early childhood education opportunities. Reforming campaign finance laws is Welder’s top priority, he said, citing Bernie Sanders’s campaign and advocating to “ban big corporate money altogether from politics.”Sylvia WilliamsAfter learning that she earned only half of what her male counterparts made in corporate America, Williams came out strongly in favor of equal pay and paid family leave. She said she would like to reinstate the Paris Climate Agreement, make changes to Environmental Protection Agency operations (such as hiring a new director) and investing in clean resources in Kansas, such as wind energy. Williams said she would support expanding healthcare, but also recommended government oversight of the pharmaceutical drug industry.Williams supports modernizing the Community Reinvestment Act and finding ways to fix Social Security funding now.“It is the perfect time to do it,” Williams said. “Large corporations just got the biggest tax cut — more than they ever dreamed of getting — so we actually have an opportunity here. Now is the time to say we’re lifting the cap on the employer side of FICA. That is how you save Social Security and Medicare.”Williams suggested reforming campaign finance laws by removing tax-exempt status for 501(c)4 organizations. By doing so, the Internal Revenue Service would have audit oversight, and donors would “be a lot more nervous” about donating to these corporations.Primary is August 7First time voters can still register to vote in the in the August 7 primary through July 17.You can find information about how to register to vote in the primary elections via the Johnson County Election Office website here.
Dear Editor,Mere hours after Nagamootoo lambasted the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C) for salary increases during their tenure in Government, headlines revealed yet another atrocity on the nation’s purse by Nagamootoo and the coalition regime.He has been granted tax exemptions on unlimited vehicles, in addition to the duty-free vehicle in his possession as a Member of Parliament (MP) and the multiplicity of benefits he receives as erstwhile Prime Minister and Vice President: So much for his pre-elections assurances to the electorate that his Government would not indulge in a “Cadillac lifestyle in a donkey-cart economy”.When the PPP/C accessed administrative office, the former People’s National Congress (PNC) Government had depleted the nation’s Treasury to zilch, run up internal and external debts that this and coming generations would have been paying to infinity if it had not been for former President, late Dr Cheddi Jagan and former Finance Minister and subsequent President, Bharrat Jagdeo’s unrelenting struggle for debt relief and prudent and astute management of the nation’s finances.For years the President and Ministers of successive PPP/C Aadministrations received what was tantamount to a mere stipend – a pittance much lower than that of the PNC-inherited. In 1995, President Jagan acceded to his Ministers’ requests for an increase in salary, bearing in mind that their duties engendered great expenses, including travel and related costs to effectively manage their respective mandates.The salary scale of PPP/C Ministers was then increased to one dollar above that of Permanent Secretaries.Desmond Hoyte, who is being praised for reversing the PNC’s draconian management practices during its governance of Guyana, had been forced by the International Financial Institutions (IFIs), in particular the International Monetary Fund (IMF), to re-institute a plethora of changes – including holding free-and-fair elections after decades of rigging, or face sanctions, which included, among others, withholding of financial assistance to a poverty-stricken nation bankrupted by the PNC regime. He had no choice but to assent to all the IMF punitive conditionalities, among which was the imposition of the much-touted Economic Recovery Programme (ERP).Now being lauded as a feather in Hoyte’s cap, the ERP was, in effect, a punitive menu of measures that created much suffering to the nation’s working-class, which dubbed the punitive fiscal regime of the ERP as ‘Empty Rice Pots’. One of the impositions of the ERP was freezing the wages of public servants at 00, to which Hoyte had acceded. All during the PNC’s dictatorial tenure the trade unions, except for the Guyana Agricultural and General Workers’ Union (GAWU), had become toothless poodles that could not even yap.Upon accessing office, even as vulnerable as his government was to external financial forces, Dr Jagan figuratively told the IMF to put their conditionalities where the sun does not shine and immediately restored bargaining powers to the trade unions.Ever since then, to the date that the party demitted office, the PPP/C has ensured, depending on the dictates of the nation’s economic strength, that public servants received an annual increase in salary retroactive to the first month of the year, an annual bonus at year-end, and enhanced benefits.For someone who is benefiting from the fruits of the hard work and prudent management of the nation’s finances by PPP/C Presidents and Ministers, as Nagamootoo is, to begrudge the salary increases of PPP/C Presidents and Ministers is tantamount to spiteful vindictiveness and is absolute ingratitude because he, not the PPP/C Presidents and Ministers, started living a Cadillac lifestyle and became a ‘fat cat’ without lifting a finger to work for the Guyanese people.Nagamootoo’s tirade against the PPP/C anent salary increases was an attempt to deflect attention from the excesses that he and his confederates in the Granger-led Government are bestowing on themselves, relatives, friends and financiers – living the good life at the expense of the Guyanese working-class.More so, his figures were laughable and deliberately misrepresentative of Finance Minister Winston Jordan’s figures that he presented to Parliament.Unless one is mentally deficient, or deliberately obtuse the difference in governance by the PPP/C Administration and the coalition regime can be discerned by merely comparing the salary and simple lifestyle of PPP/C’s Prime Minister, the really honourable Samuel Hinds, to that of the coalition’s Prime Minister, whose excesses are unconscionable and utterly disgraceful because, as the PPP contends, the salary that Moses Nagamootoo is condemning the PPP Presidents and Ministers for was not enough for him and the members of the coalition Cabinet; hence their hefty pay increases immediately upon accessing office.Sincerely,Attiya Amanda Baksh