Points of view

first_imgWould you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletters To access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week.last_img

Continue reading

Governor Wolf Announces $55 Million in Statewide Investments to Support Business Development and Infrastructure Projects

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter December 06, 2016 Economy,  Infrastructure,  Jobs That Pay,  Press Release,  Results Harrisburg, PA – Governor Wolf today announced investments to support statewide economic development and infrastructure efforts and job creation through the Commonwealth Financing Authority, which today approved 94 projects totaling $55,068,228 in funding.“The projects approved today through the Commonwealth Financing Authority will serve as a catalyst for other revitalization efforts,” Governor Tom Wolf said. “These funds will help communities and companies with projects that will improve the lives of Pennsylvania residents and further spur job growth and create new jobs.”At today’s meeting, 94 projects in Allegheny, Armstrong, Berks, Bradford, Bucks, Butler, Carbon, Centre, Chester, Clearfield, Clinton, Crawford, Cumberland, Delaware, Franklin, Indiana, Juniata, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Luzerne, Lycoming, McKean, Monroe, Montgomery, Montour, Northampton, Northumberland, Philadelphia, Pike, and Schuylkill counties were approved for funding under Building PA, Local Share Account, and Multimodal Transportation Fund:Building PA (BPA) – Monroe County: $1,688,557 loan to Pocono Mountains Industries (PMI) on behalf of DK Stroudsburg LLC to assist with the modernization of the historic Penn Stroud Hotel, a full-service hotel and restaurant property that has been the centerpiece of the Stroudsburg Borough central business district for more than100 years. This project is expected to create 14 full-time and four part-time jobs over the next three years.Local Share Account (LSA) – Montgomery County: $479,671 in grants to support three LSA projects that encourage redevelopment or revitalization of developed or underdeveloped land, and projects that improve water and wastewater infrastructure related to business development in Montgomery County.Multimodal Transportation Fund – $52.9 million in grants to support 90 Multimodal projects to ensure the availability of safe and reliable transportation.For more information about the CFA, or to view a complete list of CFA-approved projects, visit dced.pa.gov.Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolfcenter_img Governor Wolf Announces $55 Million in Statewide Investments to Support Business Development and Infrastructure Projectslast_img read more

Continue reading

Governor Wolf Urges President to Deliver on Promise of Robust Federal Funding for Pennsylvania’s Infrastructure Needs

first_img SHARE Email Facebook Twitter Infrastructure,  Press Release Harrisburg, PA – Governor Tom Wolf today sent a letter to President Trump asking him to renew federal support for Pennsylvania’s infrastructure needs.“While many states, including Pennsylvania, have increased investments in our infrastructure, the federal government has not done the same,” said Governor Wolf. “From the beginning, I have remained hopeful that the Trump Administration would prioritize infrastructure investments and would work with us to address our infrastructure needs to help bolster the commonwealth’s economy and support good paying jobs for Pennsylvanians. I urge the federal government to work with us on a meaningful proposal that will invest in our traditional public infrastructure.”You can read the letter below, view a PDF version, or see it on Scribd.Dear President Trump:In recent months, discussions of infrastructure have again taken center stage. My state has urgent infrastructure funding needs for roads and bridges, water supply and sewer conveyance, broadband expansion, school construction and public recreational facilities to name just a few. Working with the federal government, we can tackle and address these needs and more. The precedent is clear: federal support to states helped create the path to growth in the decades after World War II. Infrastructure spending brought the United States out of the Great Recession, and set the stage for the thriving economy that has continued in your Presidency. I was encouraged by your commitment in the State of the Union Address to leverage partnerships with State and local governments, and urge you to follow through on this promise with meaningful proposals backed by renewed federal effort.Your call for partnership on this issue is timely, as infrastructure in Pennsylvania and states across the country is deteriorating. The most recent report card from the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the nation’s infrastructure a D+ grade. The 2016 World Economic Forum’s Global Competitiveness Report ranked the United States tenth in the world in infrastructure quality, down from fifth place in 2002. Today, our nation is spending less on infrastructure as a percentage of GDP than at any time in the past twenty years, and we are becoming less competitive as a result.Estimates of the need vary, but all of the numbers are large. States, including Pennsylvania, have increased their investments in recent years. It is time for the federal government to return to the arena. As you consider the shape of your final infrastructure proposal, I urge you to avoid the empty promise of privatization and financing models that will result in giveaways to projects that would have been built anyway, and heed bipartisan voices calling for robust federal investment in traditional public infrastructure.Under the prior administration, the US Treasury and Council of Economic Advisors concluded a thorough study of the economic effects of infrastructure investment. Their findings couldn’t be clearer: investment in transportation infrastructure increases productivity, accelerates economic growth, generates permanent new jobs, enhances real estate values, and yields new tax revenues at the federal, state and local levels. In short, it creates new wealth. Infrastructure investments not only improve quality of life for residents, they provide an additional 25,000 to 30,000 jobs for every $1 billion in infrastructure investment.Pennsylvania’s needs, like other states, are substantial, and the list below provides a sample of the types of projects that my state, and the federal government could partner on to address urgent needs, spur the economy, and provide good paying jobs.Roads and BridgesPennsylvania’s transportation network has served the commonwealth well, but we face significant challenges in maintaining a system which—simply put—is big and old. Pennsylvania has the fifth largest state maintained highway network in the nation, the third largest state maintained bridge system, and more structurally deficient bridges than any other state.  As federal funding has declined, we have tackled this challenge head on.In 2013, Pennsylvania’s General Assembly came together on a bipartisan basis to pass a comprehensive new transportation funding program. Since that time, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has completed 2,325 projects, worth $5 billion and has an additional 707 projects worth $5.3 billion underway. We have improved the equivalent of 24,600 miles of two-lane road and resurfaced more than 2,100 roadway miles.We have also continued to make progress in reducing the number of structurally deficient bridges in the commonwealth, down to 3,114 as of January 1st, from a high of 6,034 in 2008. We made this dramatic headway even as our state network of 25,400 bridges continues to see 200 to 250 bridges a year fall into the structurally deficient category.Despite this work, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave Pennsylvania a D- grade for its road infrastructure, and a D+ for its bridges. Over 30 percent of our 6,470 county and municipal bridges over 20 feet in length are structurally deficient. Clearly there is a need for additional investment, beyond the state’s significant contributions. We recently identified $14 billion in needs to reconstruct and modernize our 2,700 miles of interstate highways yet despite recent increases provided by Act 89, we have only been able to allocate $5.5 billion.Of principle importance to Pennsylvania and other states is the solvency of the Highway Trust Fund. The Trust Fund is now partially dependent on general fund revenue. As you finalize your proposal, I urge you to ensure that this critical piece of the federal partnership remains available to states into the future, and that increased effort in recent years by states such as Pennsylvania, that have taken the initiative to increase funding, is recognized.Water, Wastewater and StormwaterAs with many northeastern states, Pennsylvania’s drinking water, wastewater and stormwater systems are old and will continue to require significant investments to protect citizens, maintain sustainable communities for economic growth, and comply with federal mandates. Pennsylvania has more than 8,500 public water systems, and roughly 8,000 municipal sewage collection systems.The challenge of maintaining these facilities is enormous, and falls largely on local communities. The Environmental Protection Agency’s most recently released drinking water infrastructure needs assessment report from April 2013 found that Pennsylvania will have $14 billion in capital improvement needs over the next twenty years to keep drinking water pure and safe for Pennsylvania residents. On the sewer infrastructure side, Pennsylvania currently has the most combined sewer overflows (CSOs) of any state, and there is no dedicated source of federal funding to address this issue, despite federal mandates which continue to create new obligations for communities across the commonwealth.Instead, a recent report by the Congressional Research Service noted that federal funding for programs that provide support for water and sewer upgrades has “eroded” in recent years, despite calls by states and advocates for increased support to meet increased needs.Meanwhile, the same report notes that in the absence of federal support, “spending by state and local governments on drinking water and wastewater has increased much faster than spending by the federal government, especially since the mid-1970s. In 2014, the state and local share of such projects was 96%, while the federal share was 4%.”Federal support for the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, which help municipalities pay for needed upgrades, replacement, and installation of treatment technologies has declined for years, and adjusted for inflation, funding today is hundreds of millions of dollars less than when the program was first authorized in 1997.Communities in Pennsylvania are struggling to pay for necessary infrastructure, while the federal share declines. A bipartisan infrastructure plan should include robust new funding for both the Drinking Water and the Clean Water State Revolving Funds, and the establishment of a separate fund to assist communities working towards compliance with pollution runoff and CSO issues.BroadbandIn today’s global economy reliable affordable access to broadband is essential to the way we live our lives. I am committed to broadband access for residents that ensures Pennsylvanians will have the speeds necessary to conduct their business in the modern day.Pennsylvania’s greatest broadband challenge is inadequate “last-mile” access from a provider’s facilities to end-user businesses and households. These facilities could be telephone, cable, satellite, or wireless networks that are used to provide broadband services to end-users. This problem exists because fiber or cable service is lacking and/or wireless or satellite service is inadequate in some parts of the state, especially in rural and low-income areas.Closing the last-mile is extremely expensive. Between 2005 and 2015, Pennsylvania’s Public Utility Commission distributed nearly $1 billion dollars in authorized revenues and rate increases to internet-service providers. Despite this massive public investment, there are as many as 800,000 people in Pennsylvania without access to a wired connection capable of modern high-speed internet.Calls to expand support in order to achieve universal broadband build-out have come from across the political spectrum. I urge you to make expansion of funding for broadband buildout a cornerstone of any expanded infrastructure proposal.The items above are only a few of a myriad of other infrastructure needs in Pennsylvania. Others include funding for school construction, the rehabilitation of public recreational facilities, the upgrade of lock, dam and port facilities, and investment in new energy infrastructure. As you prepare your infrastructure plan, I urge you to recommit to the model of cooperative federalism that has made this country great, and support robust federal funding to rebuild for the future.You will find a ready partner in Pennsylvania.Sincerely,TOM WOLFGovernor 2018.02.08 Trump Infrastructure Letter by Governor Tom Wolf on Scribd Governor Wolf Urges President to Deliver on Promise of Robust Federal Funding for Pennsylvania’s Infrastructure Needscenter_img February 08, 2018last_img read more

Continue reading

Fine art treasures are set to go under the auctioneer’s hammer in Brisbane

first_imgThe Picasso etching for auction following the sale of 10 Wordsworth St, Bulimba.THEIR house has sold, so now the former owners of a Bulimba property are offering up their fine art collection at a massive in home auction.Buyers are tipped to be most keen on a signed Picasso etching, but also on offer are Ray Crooke, David Boyd and Pro Hart oil paintings.A signed Dali lithography, art deco sculptures, a large David Bromley nude, Donald Bradman signed memorabilia and paintings by Aboriginal artists, Gloria Petyarre and Abie Loy Kemarre.10 Wordsworth St, Bulimba is under contract so the owners are now selling off their art works. Picture: realestate.com.auThe former owners, who are downsizing, won’t have too much to pack in the move as they are also offering up plenty of their furniture, including a beechwood dining table, lounge suite, fine Persian Bakhtiari carpet, various tribal rugs, and a bedroom suite.Viewing of the collection which is being auctioned through Charleston’s Fine Art Auctions begins at 9.30am Sunday December 3, 10 Wordsworth St, Bulimba.The entrance to Wordsworth St, Bulimba. Picture: realestate.com.auMore from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach North1 hour agoNew apartments released at idyllic retirement community Samford Grove Presented by The auction starts at 11.30am according to Charleston’s director Danny Taibel.Mr Taibel expected interest to be strongest in the Picasso.“We do house auctions all over the country,’’ he said.He said there was a good collection of art available for sale and someone could easily be looking at the Picasso on their own wall by Sunday night.“We have had a very, very, good early response,’’ he said.With such an impressive art collection you would expect a fairly impressive home to house it.The home, at 10 Wordsworth St, Bulimba is now under contract.It was listed for sale through Ray White Bulimba.It is in a cul-de-sac and has views to Hamilton Hill and Portside, the Gateway bridge and Balmoral Hill.It large open plan living and dining areas and a large main bedroom with a walk in robe. There are five bedrooms and three bathrooms and gated secure entry via a video intercom.last_img read more

Continue reading

Finnish earnings-related pension assets fall by €3.1bn over Q1

first_imgTotal assets held in Finland’s earnings-related pension schemes shrank by around 1.7% in the first three months of this year, as pension payments outweighed contributions and weak equity markets took their toll on investments.Finnish pensions alliance TELA released figures showing assets at employee pension funds fell by €3.1bn in the first quarter of the year to end March at €177.8bn.TELA said there were three reasons for this contraction – weak investment returns, particularly for quoted shares; the fact pension payments exceeded contributions collected in the system; and a change in the way data is now collected, which it says is in some respects more accurate than the old method.Peter Halonen, analyst at TELA, said: “The investment environment in international financial markets has been a challenging one with uncertain market conditions, due to, for example, slowing economic growth in China and a fall in commodities prices.” Investments performed poorly in the first quarter, particularly for quoted shares, he said.Pension schemes de-risked by selling riskier investments between January and March.Halonen said the amount of pensions paid out was increasing for the schemes, and therefore investment income was needed on a permanent basis to finance part of pension contributions.He said this would have to increase over the next few decades.Also, the change in the way statistics are reported resulted in data collection being more specific, which had the effect of slightly decreasing the level of assets reported, TELA said.The survey showed that Finnish earnings-related pension providers were increasing the proportion of assets they invested in non-euro areas.Assets invested outside the euro area increased to 51.3% at the end of March, from 50.1% at the end of December 2015.Investment in Finland rose to 27.6% at the end of March from 27%, and investment in the rest of the euro-zone fell to 21.1% from 23%.The share of investment in non-euro countries, as well as the domestic proportion of investment, has been increasing in the last few years, TELA’s analysis shows.“Pension funds have been directing investment outside the euro area to spread risk more efficiently,” Halonen said.Earlier this month, the Finnish Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA) reported that the solvency ratio of the country’s employee pension sector was at a solid level.In a stress test, companies providing employee pensions were shown to be below the solvency limit, it said, but their technical reserves remained covered in the stress scenario.Anneli Tuominen, FIN-FSA director general, said: “Risk levels have risen in the pension sector, as shown by the results of the stress test.”These circumstances further highlighted the importance of solid risk management by the companies, she said.The regulator said the solvency ratio in the employee pension sector fell to 26.3% at the end of March from 28.6% at the end of December but was still on a solid level.The decline was due to weak investment returns and the relatively high return payable on pension liabilities, it said.In the first quarter, it said, the sector had on average made an investment loss of 1%, with equities losing an average of 3.3% and fixed income investments generating 0.1%.last_img read more

Continue reading

When neighbours become such good friends, they never leave

first_imgL to R, Claire and Eric Bassingthwaighte, Helen and Don Bray, Jan and Bruce Wakefield and Jim Christie are neighbours who have owned their homes in the same street for more than 50 years. Image: AAP/Steve Pohlner.His wife, Helen, recalls Mains Road being little more than a dirt road and can hardly believe it is now a busy, six lane thoroughfare.Both say they have never had any desire to move.“Sometimes we tossed the idea around, but where would we go?” Mr Bray said. THE MASTER SUITE BIGGER THAN YOUR HOME While the group is ageing and may gradually continue getting smaller, the memories of years of friendship through major life changes will remain.“We haven’t lived in each other’s pockets, but we always knew we were there for each other,” Mrs Bassingthwaighte said.“We always have a big get-together each Christmas. This will be the first year we won’t be there.” More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus17 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market17 hours agoEric and Claire Bassingthwaighte have just sold this house in Sunnybank after 54 years.Sunnybank, just 12km from Brisbane’s CBD, is now a bustling hub, serviced by three train stations, shopping centres, restaurants, schools and a hospital.The suburb is in high demand among home buyers, with a median house price of $825,000, according to CoreLogic — that’s 54 per cent higher than it was just five years ago.The Brays never imagined the area would experience the growth it has.Mr Bray remembers how dark the street was when he and his wife moved there and the excitement of getting a street light for the first time.“When we had the first street light put in, all the neighbours were out looking at it,” he said. UNDER HALF A MILLION HOMES SOLD L to R, Claire and Eric Bassingthwaighte, Helen and Don Bray, Jan and Bruce Wakefield and Jim Christie have all lived in the same Sunnybank street for more than 50 years. Image: AAP/Steve Pohlner.WHEN Eric and Claire Bassingthwaighte built their “forever home” in Sunnybank 54 years ago, they really weren’t kidding.Now in their 80s, the couple have spent their entire married life in the house they built in 1965 for about 5500 pounds — around $146,000 today — when the suburb was little more than farmland.And they weren’t the only ones.That same year, Don and Helen Bray built a house next door in Tarrawonga Street and have lived there ever since.Jan and Bruce Wakefield moved into their house on the other side of the Bassingthwaightes’ the following year in 1966 and also still call it home.And Jim Christie and his family moved in next to the Wakefields the same year and, believe it or not, he’s still there. GET THE LATEST REAL ESTATE NEWS DIRECT TO YOUR INBOX HERE The neighbours became such good friends, they never wanted to leave.It’s a rare situation when you consider the average Sunnybank resident moves house every 14 years, according to CoreLogic.But it’s the beginning of the end of an era.After five decades, the time has finally come for the Bassingthwaightes to move on.“It’s very emotional,” Mrs Bassingthwaighte said.“We’ve done the right thing though, we’re elderly now.”The Bassingthwaightes have just sold their three-bedroom family home for $710,000 and are in the process of downsizing to a unit.“When we bought, it was a custard apple farm area,” Mrs Bassingthwaighte said.“We’ve watched a lot of development, a lot of demolition, over the years. It’s been amazing to watch.”last_img read more

Continue reading

National volleyball team wins first game against st kitts

first_img Share 50 Views   2 comments NewsSports National volleyball team wins first game against st kitts by: – June 7, 2012 Members of the National Volleyball team. Photo credit: Shayne GuisteIn a nail biting, heart pumping 5 setter, the Dominica National volleyball team left it all on the floor and emerged victorious against rival St Kitts. After confidently destroying the St Kitts team 25-13 in the first set, our countrymen seemed to have gotten complacent and fell 2 straight sets. But with inspiring play from local MVP David Toussaint, a superb effort from all role players not to mention an excellent job from the coaching staff, the team battled back to force a 5th set. The air was thick with tension as it went back and forth, but our boys kept their head as David and Lincoln Riviere went pound for pound with the opponents to get us the victory. Final scores 25-13, 19-25, 20-25, 25-20 and 17-15.Press Release Sharecenter_img Tweet Share Sharing is caring!last_img read more

Continue reading

Herbert Brothers prepare for big screen debut

first_imgBatesville, In. — The Herbert Brothers, most notable for winning the 2009 Doritos big game commercial and $1 million, have released their first full-length movie- In Between Days.Joe Herbert says the movie is about a writer who is turning 40-years-old, suffering a mid-life crisis and a creative drought decides to go on a quest to find the first car he ever owned, a 1966 Ford Mustang. The main character teams up with old friends, including a former love interest to find his car. Through the adventure he finds a clearer meaning of friendship.Faust Checo, William Russ (Boy Meets World, 90210 & The Right Stuff), Ben Cain (Abduction, Dogma & The Temptations), Amy Jo Johnson (Mighty Morphin Power Rangers, Felicity & Flashpoint) and Andy Ahrens (Chicago Fire, Dead Draw & Chicago P.D.) star in the R rated film.The movie will be at the Gibson Theater Monday, October 23, Wednesday, October 25 and Wednesday, November 1. All showings at 6 p.m. There’s more information online here.Since 2010, the Herbert brothers have developed a reputation for producing funny, off beat commercials that rival those done by agencies with much larger budgets.last_img read more

Continue reading

Explainer – World Test Championship kicks off new era

first_imgBy Sudipto GangulyMUMBAI, India (Reuters) – Test cricket will cease to be just a bilateral affair from tomorrow when England host Australia in the opening Ashes contest at Edgbaston to kick off the widely-anticipated World Test Championship (WTC).The International Cricket Council (ICC) has been determined to create a meaningful competition for the longest form of the game and the WTC is expected to provide the much-needed boost to Test, which is typically played over two-innings-a-side and up to five days.The long-awaited Championship, involving the top nine Test nations competing in a league across two years, has been designed to give more meaning to Test series.“The WTC will bring relevance and context to bilateral Test cricket over the next two years, creating a pinnacle event for the five-day format, just as the World Cups for men and women do in the ODI and T20I formats,” ICC General Manager Geoff Allardice said in a statement.WHAT IS WTC? The nine top-ranked sides will play three series each at home and away over two years to determine the best Test team in the world. Points will be awarded for every single game and the two teams who top the points table will play in a one-off World Test Championship Final in June 2021 at Lord’s. The winners will be crowned World Test Champions. There will be a new winner in the format after every two-year cycle.Each series will comprise a minimum of two and maximum of five Tests and matches can also be played outside the WTC. Only matches previously identified as part of the WTC will count towards the championship.WHO ARE PLAYING? Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the West Indies will compete in the first cycle. Three remaining teams – Afghanistan, Ireland and Zimbabwe – can play Tests but those will not be part of the WTC. The second WTC cycle is scheduled for June 2021 to April 2023.POINTS? There will be 120 points on offer for each series and will be distributed over the number of games. For example, a two-Test series will mean 60 points for each match while a three-Test series will award 40 points each. The five-Test Ashes series will award 24 points each. A tied match will be worth half the points available while a draw will fetch a third of the points.TIED OR DRAWN FINAL? If the final ends in a tie or a draw, the two teams will be named joint champions. The first cycle of the WTC will consist of five-day matches and will include day-night matches.WHO SAID WHAT? India captain Virat Kohli – We are awaiting the ICC World Test Championship with great enthusiasm as it adds context to the longest format of the game. Test cricket is very challenging and coming out on top in the traditional form is always highly satisfying. The Indian team have done really well in recent years and will be fancying their chances in the championship.Australia captain Tim Paine – The World Test Championship is a fantastic initiative. We love playing Test cricket; it’s the pinnacle for us, remains hugely popular in Australia and we’re fortunate that it enjoys great support at home among players, the media and the public.To wear the baggy green is the ultimate for all Australian cricketers and if the World Test Championship helps to ensure that all countries make Tests a high priority then that has to be good news for the game in general and the continuing health of the format in particular.South Africa captain Faf du Plessis – For the last while we have longed to have something to play for that gives proper context to Test cricket. The stakes are high because every series matters. It’s refreshing and the players are looking forward to this new chapter of Test cricket.England fast bowler James Anderson – Test cricket is the pinnacle of our sport. It is the very essence of cricket and the majority of players want to strive to play the purist form of the game.The ICC World Test Championship is another brilliant initiative for the sport, adding context and relevance to every Test series. Every Test matters, but even more so now.last_img read more

Continue reading

Playoffs bring out crowd

first_imgSunday night, I was surprised to see one of the mostentertaining games of my life. The shock hit me later when I realized it waswell past 1 a.m., and I had been watching NHL hockey for over three hours —something I hadn’t done in years. I saw the Dallas Stars beat the San JoseSharks in four overtimes — that’s more than two combined games.So why the sudden care for a sport that usually boresme?  Besides the fact the game wentto four overtimes, I saw that every player played with unbelievable intensitythroughout the entire game. Some of the players on the ice were skating foralmost an hour and both teams had effectively played back-to-back games. Themost incredible part it, however, was that every fan was still at the arena,cheering on their team.Perhaps it was that the Stars needed to win in order toadvance to the conference championship, or maybe it was simply that the NHL hasthe highest attendance percentage out of the four major American sports at 91.7percent — either way, the fans showed up and the teams didn’t disappoint.While the NHL playoffs have been unusually entertaining thusfar, the NBA playoffs might just be up to par with hockey’s excitement. Themost fun series to watch so far was definitely between the Boston Celtics andAtlanta Hawks. The Celtics are the top team in the league, and the Hawks wereone of the worst teams to make the playoffs in history.Nevertheless, Atlanta put all analysts on mute, ignoring alltalk of them being swept by Boston and pushed the series to seven games,winning every game at their home court. During the season, the Hawks’ homecrowd never came close to filling the capacity of 18,729.As a result, some begin to ask the question: If the Hawksplayed so well at home against one of the best teams in the NBA, why didn’ttheir fans show up to support them during the regular season? Well, simplyput, they just weren’t that good.It’s really amazing how fans can help their home team. Lookat the Los Angeles Lakers for example. They sell out every game and their homerecord of 30-11 showed for it. Maybe if more teams at the bottom of the playoffbracket got some love during the season, their home records would reflect thatsupport the Hawks showed in the playoffs, shocking the Celtics in three of thegames.It does make sense that fans show up when a team performswell, but so much of the time, teams depend on their fans to give themconfidence at home. The Badgers, for example, have not lost a home footballgame under coach Brett Bielema, and he often credits this to the support of thestudents and alumni.The best fans are the ones who stick around when their teamis in the gutter and support them at home no matter what — that is why somefranchises will always be great.For example, Cubs fans come to games because their team hasfailed to win a World Series for the past 100 years, supporting them nonetheless— that may be a big reason why they are regarded as some of the best fans inAmerican sports.Going back to hockey, it seems the reason fans care so muchabout the playoffs is because players seem to play harder. In games where youhave to win to move on, not just the fans, but the players show up as well.Seemingly, any sports fan can enjoy watching an irrelevant sporting eventbecause they want to see the players play harder than they did all season.Maybe if sports fans start to realize that showing up yieldsgood results, they will make a presence during the regular season and supportthe teams that don’t always succeed throughout the year, like the Hawks.Who knows, maybe Atlanta will sell out a game nextseason.  Chances are they won’t,but if this year’s playoffs are any indication, the Hawks can beat any teamwith the help of their home crowd.Jonah is a freshman majoring in journalism. Like rootingfor the home team? He can be reached at jbraun@badgerherald.com.last_img read more

Continue reading