Capital assets test panders to 'very worst urban prejudices' say farmers
ICMSA president John Comer has reiterated his total opposition to the proposal regarding a capital assets test for third-level grants, which he described as "blatantly unfair and pandering to the very worst urban prejudices and myths about farmers and their finances".
His words came as Agriculture Minister Simon Coveney revealed that he too has "a difficulty" with the plan.
Mr Comer said ICMSA would be contacting every TD again over the next few days and he was confident that a very solid number would agree that a move to any form of capital assets test on third-level grants would very specifically discriminate against the farming community.
He said the nub of the matter was a misconception that a farm -- the tool by which a farmer earns his income -- is a capital asset similar to government gilts, blue-chip equities or other easily cash-convertible assets.
He said the family farm is how the individual earns his income and does not form part of the income itself. He added that such thinking equated to a situation whereby Ronan Keating's voice would be treated as a capital asset or Brian O'Driscoll's hands.
He said that apply a capital assets test for third-level grants would arouse suspicion throughout farming communities of an unfounded urban bias against farmers.
No winner of €5.3m Lotto jackpot
THERE was no winner of last night's Lotto jackpot prize of €5.3m. The numbers were 24, 27, 28, 29, 36, 37 (bonus 6).
There were no Match 5+bonus winners, but there were 44 Match 5s who each get €1,784; 112 Match 4+bonus (€176); 1,983 Match 4s (€61); 2,997 Match 3+bonus (€27); and 34, 289 match 3s (scratchcard).The Lotto Plus 1 numbers were 11, 16, 20, 35, 44, 45 (bonus 22) and the Lotto Plus 2 numbers were 4, 12, 19 21, 27, 29, (bonus 43).
And in the UK draw for stg£4m the numbers were 1, 5, 14, 18 34, 44 (bonus 23).
Cutbacks for hospital seeking €10m
A €10M overspend at one of the country's biggest hospitals has caused management to appeal for help.
Management at Cork University Hospital have been told by the HSE that they will have to come up with ways of recouping the debt. Measures inside the huge hospital -- known locally as the Wilton Hilton -- have been initiated in an effort to find the €10m.
Professor Richard Greene, clinical director at the hospital, explained the issue to the media yesterday.
"Further reductions will affect patients. We have to find this €10m and so these measures will result in an increase in waiting lists. As a result of further cutbacks elective patients will be worst effected," he said.
Initial savings will be made by cutting back on agency staff and fewer hours worked by junior doctors.
Other cuts involve closing one of the hospital's 14 operating theatres and reducing on the amount work performed at the hospital's sister facility, the Cork University Maternity Hospital.
There is also a ban on overtime at the hospital.
Former conjoined twins to steal show
Former conjoined twins Hassan and Hussein Benhaffaf are set to celebrate their new-found walking ability at a national festival of twins this week.
When the 32-month-old boys attended last year's festival they thrilled the TwinFest session at Keash, Co Sligo, with the speed of their crawl. Since then they have been fitted with prosthetic legs and this year the "little fighters" as their mother Angie calls them, will walk at the festival next Saturday, of which she is patron.
The boys, who live in Cork, were born in December 2009. They were separated four months later following a 14-hour operation.
The festival is expected to attract more than 200 sets of twins. Last year 105 sets, plus five sets of triplets and one set of quads took part in the festival which began in 2010.
The festival was inspired to promote awareness and raise funds for the Menigitis Trust to commemorate the memory of local organiser Patrick Ward's five-month-old niece, Katie Garvey, who succumbed to the devastating illness on Valentine's Day 2007.
This year's chosen charity is Act for Meningitis, which was launched by the Carroll family of Oranmore, Co Galway, in memory of their daughter Aoibh who succumbed to the deadly disease in 2008.
Medical doctor leaves €2.3m in will
Sumanth Narain Jeawon, a medical doctor of Blackglen Road, Sandyford, Co Dublin, who died on March 31, 2012, has left €2,367,869 according to documents lodged in the Probate Office in Dublin last week.
Other wills: Margaret C O'Carroll, nurse, Rathgar Road, Rathmines, Dublin, left €1,800,773; Hillary Isabel Hamilton, cook/housekeeper, Marylands House, Ballybrack Road, Shankill, Co Dublin, left €1,665,657; John F Mannion, farmer, Barbersfort, Tuam, Co Galway, left €1,258,063; Turlough O'Leary, accountant, Westminster Lawns, Foxrock, Co Dublin, who died in December 2011, left €1,215,089; Maureen Hennessy, teacher, Dalysfort Road, Salthill, Galway, €1,214,256; and Norah Mahony, pharmaceutical assistant, Sion Road, Kilkenny, who died on November 21, 2010, left €1,213,067.
The value of wills include property, including the family home and should not be regarded as cash amounts