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Thursday, August 31, 2017

趙美心為暫緩遣返兒童法辯護

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Asian American and Pacific Islander community leaders held a press conference outside of the White House to defend the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that President Trump has threatened to eliminate. Since its creation in 2012, the DACA program has granted nearly 800,000 young people with the ability to pursue jobs and achieve higher education without fear of deportation. As Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC), Rep. Chu released the following statement to support DACA:
“As Chair of the Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus, I want to thank the coalition of DREAMers, faith leaders, and community leaders who have been standing outside of the White House – day and night, night and day – to defend DACA. I am here to support you and to join you in telling President Trump that our DREAMers are here to stay!
“Over the past five years, the DACA program has enabled nearly 800,000 young people who were brought to the United States as children to come out of the shadows. This includes many Asians and Pacific Islanders who have been able to go to school, attain work permits, and pursue their dreams. All of our DACA recipients have passed rigorous background checks to participate in the program. And they are American in every sense of the word except on paper.
“Unfortunately, President Trump has threatened to end the DACA program as we know it. But we will fight back. I want our DREAMers to know that there are members of Congress who support you and who will continue to fight to protect DACA and to fix our broken immigration system.
“We will not allow our immigrant communities to be trampled upon. I want our DACA recipients and our TPS recipients to know that we support you. Together, we will fight to protect our immigrant communities and ensure that America continues to remain the land of opportunity for all!”

波士頓海港今晚8點放煙火

To quote the muse, Katy Perry"Boom. Boom. Booooom!... Even Brighter Than the Moon. Moon Mooooon!!" 

If you're anywhere near Boston Harbor at 8:15pm tonight, please look at the Boston Harbor skyline... Tune into Magic 106.7FM (... where I'll be SHOCKED if they don't play Katy Perry's anthem to "decorative explosives"!)... And enjoy a wonderful conclusion to summer, thanks to the amazing folks at "Boston Harbor Now". 

Tonight... Boston Harbor Now presents its Fifth Annual "Illuminate The Harbor Fireworks Celebration".

I'm excited to have, once again, had the opportunity to work with Boston Harbor Now to play a small roll in putting this together... And we should all be extremely grateful to them for providing this fantastic show to our communities, for a fifth consecutive year.

Please visit Boston Harbor Now's website for more information on the many, many programs they provide for all our communities: http://www.boston harbornow.org/

Here are the details for tonight's show ~

Boston Harbor Now in partnership with the Office of Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the City of Boston is proud to announce the return of our "Illuminate the Harbor" Labor Day Weekend fireworks over Boston Harbor for the 5th year in a row.
– What is ‘Illuminate’: Boston Harbor Now’s 5th Annual Illuminate the Harbor Fireworks Celebration from two barges in Boston Harbor located between the Seaport and North End!
– When are the fireworks: 8:15 PM on Thursday, August 31, 2017.
– Where to Watch: Suggested public viewing locations along the Boston HarborWalk include
  • Christopher Columbus Park, North End
  • Piers Park, East Boston
  • Fan Pier, Seaport District
– Where to Listen: The Soundtrack of the Fireworks will be broadcasted LIVE on MAGIC 106.7the evening of the show beginning at 8:15. Be sure to tune in for the full effect
- For additional information on Illuminate the Harbor, please visit: http://www.bostonharbor now.org/fireworks/

BOSTON CULTURAL COUNCIL ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR 2018 GRANT FUNDING CYCLE

MAYOR WALSH ANNOUNCES BOSTON CULTURAL COUNCIL ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS FOR 2018 GRANT FUNDING CYCLE
Applications open on September 1, and will be accepted through October 16
BOSTON - Thursday, August 31, 2017 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced that beginning September 1, the Boston Cultural Council (BCC) will accept applications for the 2018 organizational grant funding cycle. More than $400,000 in funding will be awarded to organizations and projects in Boston that enhance the quality of life, the economy, and the design of the City of Boston and that address the goals of the Boston Creates Cultural Plan.

"Boston Cultural Council organizational grants help smaller arts organizations continue the great work they are doing - or larger organizations bring programs to the city," said Mayor Walsh. "These grants support a wide variety of artistic projects and activities in Boston, including exhibits, festivals, short-term artist residencies or performances in schools, workshops, and lectures. The grants help ensure that arts are accessible to every resident in Boston."

Grants will be made in two categories:
  • Under $1 million annual budget: Organizations with a budget of under $1 million with projects located in the City of Boston may apply for general operating support.
  • Over $1 million annual budget: Organizations that offer programs in the City of Boston with budgets over $1 million may apply for programmatic support.
Under the umbrella of the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture, the BCC helps to ensure grantmaking responds to the needs of the cultural community. The BCC annually distributes funds allocated by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency, and the City of Boston to support innovative arts, humanities, and interpretive sciences programming that enhances the quality of life in Boston.

Successful applications will be specific about how they help grow access to the arts in areas not already well served by cultural opportunities, foster access to the arts for populations who don't typically have ready access to the arts, elevate the work of Boston's creatives, inspire the creation of new works, and support the achievement and provision of excellent, high quality arts and culture in the City of Boston. 
Applications can be found here on September 1, and will be accepted through October 16, 2017, for grants in the following categories: Music, Film and Video, Traditional and Folk Arts, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, Humanities, Literary Arts, and Multi-discipline. All applications will be reviewed by members of the BCC and the Mayor's Office of Arts and Culture, and grant awards will be announced in January 2018.  Grants of up to $5,000 will be awarded. Grant guidelines and application information are available here.

Grant information workshops will be held in three locations: On September 14, 2017, at the Codman Square Branch of the Boston Public Library from 6-8 p.m.; on September 23, 2017, at the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Branch of the Boston Public Library from 10 a.m.-noon, and on October 4, 2017, at the Connolly Branch of the Boston Public Library from noon -2 p.m.

The BCC comprises Boston residents appointed by Mayor Walsh to serve for up to six years each. The BCC annually reviews applications during a series of fall meetings conducted to evaluate the overall quality of proposed programming and its potential benefit to diverse audiences in neighborhoods throughout Boston.

For additional information on the Boston Cultural Council, please visit here.

Bunker Hill Community College Hosts International Exchange Students Through U.S. Department of State’s Community College Initiative Program

Bunker Hill Community College Hosts International Exchange Students Through
U.S. Department of State’s Community College Initiative Program

BOSTON, August 31, 2017—Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) is pleased to be one of ten campuses across eight states to welcome international exchange participants to campus for the 2017-2018 academic year as part of the Community College Initiative (CCI) Program. The students will study Early Childhood Education, Fire and Safety and Entrepreneurship.

Administered by Northern Virginia Community College on behalf of the Community College Consortium, the U.S. Department of State’s CCI Program is designed to build participants’ technical skills, enhance leadership capabilities and strengthen English language proficiency.

Each student participates in a one-year non-degree academic program in workforce development fields at a U.S. community college with opportunities to participate in professional internships, service learning and community engagement activities to forge relationships with citizens of the United States and other countries.

Participants return home with a deeper understanding of U.S. culture and with improved technical and vocational skills to contribute to the economic development of their home communities. In 2016-2017, CCI participants contributed nearly $1.3 million in service to local communities, while helping to internationalize community colleges in the United States (IndependentSector.org).

Now in its tenth year, the CCI Program has hosted more than 2,800 participants from 21 countries. This year’s participants are from Bangladesh, Brazil, Colombia, Cote d’Ivoire, Dominican Republic, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, South Africa and Turkey. Participants are recruited from underserved and underrepresented communities, particularly women.

TREASURER GOLDBERG APPOINTS STEVEN HOFFMAN TO THE CANNABIS CONTROL COMMISSION

TREASURER GOLDBERG APPOINTS STEVEN HOFFMAN TO THE CANNABIS CONTROL COMMISSIONFormer Business Executive to Serve as Chair of the Commission
BOSTON – Today, Treasurer Deb Goldberg appointed Steven Hoffman to the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC). Hoffman will serve as Chair of the Commission. Per statute, the Treasurer’s appointment must have experience in corporate management, finance, or securities and will serve a term of 5 years.
“I am pleased to appoint Steven Hoffman as Chair of the Cannabis Control Commission,” said Treasurer Deb Goldberg. “Steven brings a wealth of invaluable experience from a long and distinguished career in business development, corporate strategy and senior management. I am confident that he will serve the Commonwealth well and steer this brand-new industry in the right direction.”
“I am honored to be appointed Chair of the Cannabis Control Commission by Treasurer Goldberg,” said Steven Hoffman. “I hope to guide this Commission thoughtfully and responsibly as we implement the legalization of recreational marijuana in Massachusetts. We have a lot to do, I am excited to get to work.”
Mr. Hoffman served as CEO at ThinkFire and Exchange Solutions. He was the Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy Officer at Sapient and Mr. Hoffman led the Chicago office and the Global Strategy Practice as a Senior Vice President at CSC Index. He was a partner at Bain and Company, where he ran the firm’s 600-person Boston Office. He holds a BA in Economics from Wesleyan University and an MBA in Finance and Statistics from the University of Chicago.
The 5 member Cannabis Control Commission in an independent agency, with appointees from the Treasurer, Governor, and the Attorney General, that was established by Chapter 55 of the Acts of 2017 which was signed by the Governor in July. Their role is to establish, regulate, and oversee the Commonwealth’s new recreational marijuana industry passed by voters in November of 2016.

BOSTON SAVES RECEIVES $35,000 NATIONAL LEAGUE OF CITIES FINANCIAL INCLUSION GRANT

BOSTON SAVES RECEIVES $35,000 NATIONAL LEAGUE OF CITIES FINANCIAL INCLUSION GRANT 
BOSTON - Thursday, August 31, 2017 - Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced that the National League of Cities has awarded a $35,000 grant to support the growth of Boston Saves - the City of Boston's children's savings account program - as it enters the second year of its three-year pilot. The grant will fund Boston Saves' parent engagement and community partnership efforts, including financial education and wealth-building initiatives for Boston families through the Mayor's Office of Financial Empowerment. Mayor Walsh launched Boston Saves last fall to help families of Boston Public Schools (BPS) kindergartners save money for their children's college or post-secondary career training.

"We are grateful to the National League of Cities for recognizing the value of Boston Saves in expanding financial opportunity for our young people and families," said Mayor Walsh. "Boston Saves provides families in need with concrete tools to save for their children's post-secondary future."

Boston Saves includes $50 in seed money for each kindergartner's account, financial incentives for saving, an online platform for tracking account growth, and family events and classroom activities that promote saving as a fun, community-wide effort.

"Boston Saves is an exciting opportunity for families to support their children in pursuing post-secondary education," said Timothy Flacke, Executive Director at Commonwealth, a mission driven organization that partnered with the City of Boston to design the children savings account program. "The continued growth and expansion of Boston Saves will allow even more families to build a solid foundation for education savings, a critical first step to financial opportunity."

"We are grateful for the Boston Saves program, which teaches students and families about the importance of financial literacy in a fun and engaging way," said Boston Public Schools Superintendent Tommy Chang. "We know that when learning is fun, it resonates with students for years to come."

The National League of Cities grant will fund:
  • Training of Boston Saves parent ambassadors who can facilitate program participation by teaching fellow parents about the program in their native language and in culturally competent ways.
  • Coordination among Boston Saves stakeholders including financial institutions, colleges and citizen-engagement organizations to strengthen the program's community roots.
  • Promotion of valuable financial initiatives from the Mayor's Office of Financial Empowerment - such as credit-building help, financial coaching, and free tax preparation - among Boston Saves partners.
The National League of Cities awarded the grant as part of its Financial Inclusion Systems and City Leadership (FISCL) project. Boston was one of eight cities selected to participate in the two-year project, which is designed to help cities improve residents' financial health and stability.

The Boston Saves pilot began with five participating schools and will grow to 11 this fall. The program will begin expansion to all of Boston's district and charter schools by Fall 2019.

MAYOR WALSH LAUNCHES #MEETBOSTON CHALLENGE TO WELCOME

MAYOR WALSH LAUNCHES #MEETBOSTON CHALLENGE TO WELCOME 
BOSTON - Thursday, August 31, 2017 -  Mayor Martin J. Walsh today announced the City of Boston's inaugural  #MeetBoston challenge, a new initiative to encourage incoming college students to venture beyond campus and discover the unique and exciting offerings throughout the City's neighborhoods and Main Street districts. As part of the City of Boston's welcome information package for new and returning students, the #MeetBoston challenge serves as an introductory guide to Boston's biggest tourist destinations, as well as the Boston Main Streets and hidden neighborhood gems.

"As we welcome incoming first year and returning students back to college campuses throughout the City of Boston, we are happy to provide all the tools needed to discover what this City has to offer," said Mayor Walsh. "Boston is home to many popular and historic attractions and has a bustling downtown retail and restaurant ecosystem, but our Main Street districts and neighborhoods also offer vibrant and unique options. I encourage all students to explore this list and find out why residents are so proud to call Boston home."

Mayor Walsh's #MeetBoston challenge will run through September 30, 2017, and  is designed to help students creatively navigate and enjoy Boston's neighborhoods on any budget. Through a curated list of iconic Boston landmarks and activities, participants are able to walk, bike, or take public transportation to every activity on the task list and can customize which parks, museums, neighborhoods, and business district they visit based on personal interest. Flexibility is built into the challenge and allows for all interested participants to choose how to mark their ten accomplishments on social media.   
To participate in Mayor Walsh's  #MeetBoston challenge on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, visit www.boston.gov/meet-boston to access the list of tasks and complete the submission form. Please include all photos or video taken when completing each task. Once the challenge is complete, participants will receive a personalized certificate to recognize their accomplishment. Use the hashtag #MeetBoston while posting photos on social media and be entered into a contest to meet Mayor Walsh at City Hall. In order to help students and businesses participate, draft tweets and graphics to share on social media are also included on the website for download.

昆士市長邀市民加入濟助哈維風災難民行動


Mayor Koch Launches Harvey Fundraiser

QUINCY - Mayor Thomas Koch today announced a special community fund-raiser to assist Hurricane Harvey victims from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, September 7, at Zef Cicchetti restaurant in Quincy Center, and he launched the effort with a $50,000 contribution from the annual Mayor's Cup Charity Golf Tournament.
All are welcome at "Quincy For Houston," which will support the relief fund created by Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and administered by the Greater Houston Community Foundation, a registered 501(c)(3) public charity. Checks should be made payable to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, and all collections will be sent in one package as a gesture from the people of Quincy.
There will be entertainment and food courtesy of Zef owner Leo Keka, and event-goers are welcome to stay to watch the Patriots game later that night.
"I've been incredibly heartened by the number of people in Quincy who've approached me asking to do something, anything to help. We just thought an informal event like this where we can come together and show our support as a community would be a nice way to harness that energy," said Mayor Koch. "These families suffering right now may be pretty far away, but they are very much our neighbors. They need our help now, and they are going to need it for some time to come."
The City decided to collect monetary donations on the advice of several relief organizations, which say that financial resources are - and will be - the most pressing need for the agencies that charged with assisting in the monumental relief and recovery effort in Texas.

Anyone who wishes to donate, but cannot attend the event can go to www.ghcf.orgto contribute online. The Mayor also suggested that residents look to well-known and established relief agencies such as the Salvation Army at www.salvationarmyusa.org

Our neighbors in Texas need our help. Join us for a special community fundraiser next Thursday, Sept. 7 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Zef Cicchetti in Quincy Center. Checks can be made payable to Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund, and we'll be sending all donations in one package as a gesture from the people of Quincy.

燒烤會中獎者和摩頓市長共進早餐

Breakfast with the Mayor

Thursday, August 31, 2017
In keeping with a tradition he established several years ago, the last raffle ticket drawn by Mayor Christenson at the Annual Senior Citizen’s Cookout is the person who joins him at a local restaurant as his guest.  Ward 7 resident Ji Di Wen was this year’s lucky winner and she, along with City employees Jason Law and Frankie Lam who attended to assist with translation, enjoyed a fantastic breakfast, courtesy of Mayor Christenson at Cornucopia.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

羅德島大學孔子學院六辦美東漢語教師培訓

(Boston Orange) 孔子學院總部主辦,羅德島大學孔子學院於82527日間承辦,在該校主校區金士頓舉行的”美東地區漢語教師培訓”,共有54名美國本土及中國公派教師,志願者參加。
羅德島大學孔子學院院長何文潮(左)頒發結業證書。
            這場培訓共有4名專家主持8場講座,分別探討漢語倫理知識,教學方法,教學研究熱點。
            第一天由中國南京大學海外教育學院副院長,世漢學會理事長曹賢文主持首場講座,題目為”國際漢語課堂教學研究方法”,從課堂教學與科研的互動關係入手,談到國際漢語課堂的研究內容和方法,以及當代外語課堂的研究熱點。
            中國浙江大學傳媒與國際文化學院教授王建剛談的是理論性較強的”日常生活中的語言問題 – 兼談漢語惡質化現象”。他從語言及其功能開講,藉中國歷史事蹟和歷史人物來闡述日常生活中的語言及其功能,再談及當代漢語的惡質化問題。
            第二天由兩位美國的漢語教授和專家主講。夏威夷大學中國研究中心副主任,也是孔子學院院長的任友梅教授談”美國最好的語言教學 – 2017年精彩回顧”。她指出有效教學的原則及有效語言課程的特點,並以她教授印度語,德語等多門外語的方法,讓教師學員們深刻體會到集文化,學科內容、語言為一體的外語課堂是甚麼樣子。她的第二場講座談從可理解性輸入到可理解性輸出準備表演式評估。她利用學生們的故事展開漢語教學,提倡由學生們自己發現,總結語法。
            美國紐約大學中文教師發展中心主日唐力行教授談的是人性化教授語言。他引用實例,提倡用故事來教漢語,要激發學生的學習動機,
            唐力行還為第三天的培訓做開場。他先介紹了美國如今流行的”TPRS”教學法,也就是經由閱讀和說故事來教授流利應用語言(Teaching Proficiency through Reading and Storytelling)”。他介紹了”TPRS”的各個步驟,操練方法,還和出席學院討論利弊。
            這天,曹賢文講的另一堂課是傳承語教育理論與海外漢語教學策略。他展示了學習傳承語和第二外語的差異。為期三日的培訓,最後一堂課是王建剛的漢語中的積極修辭與消極修辭
            羅德島大學孔子學院院長何文潮在結訓時做了總結,並頒發證書給上課學員們。

            羅德島大學孔子學院從2012年起舉辦漢語教師培訓,今年是第六個年頭。何文潮表示,該院將繼續努力,為漢語老師提供最專業的培訓。

臉書計畫在波士頓增聘500名員工

(Boston Orange) 臉書快要成為劍橋市的最大雇主之一了,明年將在劍橋市開張新辦公室,增聘500名員工,總員工數將跳升為650
            臉書創辦人馬克祖柏格(Mark Zuckerberg)在哈佛校園推出這家公司後,就遷到西岸去了,直到幾乎4年之後,才在波士頓安插了一小組工作人員,辦公室都是和其他公司共用的。現在臉書在坎德廣場辦公室有100多名員工。臉書波士頓主管Ryan Mark表示,地方不夠用了。

            將來的新辦公室將座落在由Elkus Manfredi所設計的100 Binney 100號大樓,佔用3樓。明年啟用後,將和Bristol-Myers Squibb300名員工共用空間。

波士頓大學與惠洛克學院正式談判合併

(Boston Orange)波士頓大學(BU)和惠洛克(Wheelock College)829日表示,兩校正式談判合併。
            130年歷史,建於1888年的惠洛克學院,座落在河路(Riverway),距離波士頓大學的查理士河校區僅約1哩,是一所致力培養教育及社工人才的私立學校。
            近年來,該校財務捉襟見肘,2016會計年度營運損失申報260萬元,2015年虧損250萬元,此外還負債3880萬元。去年才接替Jackie Scott,出任校長的David J. Chard表示,他們還可以繼續撐下去,但那樣做十分危險。
            該校的年度營運收入,也從2015年的4140萬元降到2016年的4030萬元,收到的捐贈款也從2015年的5390萬元降到2016年的50000萬元。為節省經費,該校最近還把校長官邸,以及一棟宿舍拿出來賣。六月十,該校人員表示,他們不太確定大學本科部的未來命運。
            該校以致力改善兒童及家庭的生活為宗旨,校內有3大學院,分別為教育,社工及藝術與科學。根據聯邦政府資料,其芬衛校區目前有學生1053人。

            波士頓大學則是一所大規模的私立研究大學,共有本科及研究所學生33,000人,校內分17個學院,系所,社工及教育也是強項之一。
            惠洛克學院去年才新聘來自南浸信大學的David J. Chard為新任校長。
            在高等教育領域,人們認為合併是困難且危險的。不過專家們認為在小學校面對入學申請者減少,學生更憂心要負擔巨債之際,大概會出現越來越多的合併案。
去年,波士頓音樂學院和柏克萊音樂學院合併了。安多幅牛頓神學院(Theological Seminary)賣掉了牛頓校區,成為耶魯大學的宗教學院。
            惠洛克學院在前任校長在位的最後一年,已經出現許多狀況,包括18名教職員離任,以及一名行政高層承認論文抄襲而辭職,兩名猶太教授向聯邦政府投訴遭受歧視等醜聞。

            惠洛克的來年學費大約35,000元,若包括食宿及雜費,大約50000元。波士頓大學的學費加食宿費大約為67,000元。

摩頓市徵求今冬鏟雪合約商

Seeking Winter Contractors 2017

Wednesday, August 30, 2017
Before you know it, it will be that time of year again! The City of Malden Department of Public Works is looking to hire Contractors to plow and/or sand this winter. Applicants must be at least 18 years of age and must be fully equipped. Acceptable vehicles are pick-up trucks with an eight foot plow, larger trucks with 26,000 GVW or greater, sanders, loaders and backhoes. The City of Malden requires certification of comprehensive general liability insurance coverage in the minimum amount of $1,000,000.
Applicants must submit name, address, telephone number, email address and other pertinent information to Robert Knox, Department of Public Works Director at rknox@cityofmalden.org by no later than Wednesday, October 25th. For more information, please call 781-397-7162.

Washington Monthly Names BHCC Among Best Colleges for Adult Learners

Washington Monthly Names BHCC Among Best Colleges for Adult Learners
BOSTON, August 30, 2017 — Bunker Hill Community College (BHCC) was named one of “The Twelve Most Innovative Colleges for Adult Learners” by Washington Monthly. The article appeared within the publication’s 2017-2018 College Rankings, an annual report released as the September/October 2017 issue.
Just breaking the top 50, the College ranked 49 nationally among the publication’s ranking of “Best Colleges for Adults Learners,” but it was BHCC’s holistic approach to serving the needs of its students that caught the attention of reporter Joshua Alvarez.
The College takes “a particularly innovative approach to a problem that is startlingly common among community college students: hunger,” he said, pointing to a recent study that found 67% of community college students in America are “food insecure.”
Within the article, Alvarez highlights BHCC’s implementation of One Solid Meal, a program that provides free cafeteria meals and food gift cards to students, and the College’s on-campus branch of Single Stop, a national nonprofit organization that provides students with resources for healthcare, taxes, housing, food and financial aid.
Adult Learners, students 25 years or older, constitute approximately 40% of the overall population of college-goers, but according to Alvarez, most colleges and universities have not adapted to the trend.
“Elite colleges don’t make the cut,” he said, pointing to the majority of college-level courses at these institutions being scheduled midday, over evening and weekend options. “It’s the unheralded schools that are figuring it out.”
Beyond meeting basic needs such as food and housing, Alvarez notes BHCC’s commitment to the Open Educational Resources (OER) Degree Initiative as a way to further reduce costs for its students. OER is a growing national effort to create college courses and degree programs that use only freely accessible, openly licensed textbooks and other media instead of the usual expensive proprietary materials.

AG HEALEY RECOVERS $210,000 FOR DRIVERS FROM UBER SUBSIDIARY

AG HEALEY RECOVERS $210,000 FOR DRIVERS FROM UBER SUBSIDIARY
Leasing Company Overcharged for Toll Fees

            BOSTON – Hundreds of Massachusetts Uber drivers have received more than $210,000 in reimbursements and account credits after they were overcharged by a car leasing service for duplicative and erroneous tolls and related fees, Attorney General Maura Healey announced today.

Through an assurance of discontinuance, Xchange Leasing, LLC – a subsidiary of Uber – has reimbursed 336 Massachusetts Uber drivers for the full amount of the overcharges, including a 20 percent additional payment to make drivers whole for any time or effort they put into obtaining the refunds.

“Xchange Leasing promised to help drivers earn a living, but their shoddy conduct hurt vulnerable workers,” said AG Healey. “This settlement recovers all of the improper charges for drivers.”

Xchange Leasing primarily leases vehicles to individuals who want to drive for Uber, many of whom may otherwise be unable to obtain credit or lease a vehicle. Lease payments and related charges are typically deducted from the driver’s Uber earnings.

The AG’s Office began an investigation after the Metro West Consumer Assistance Office, one of the Local Consumer Programs funded by the AG’s Office, received complaints from several drivers alleging that Xchange Leasing was deducting excessive amounts from their Uber earnings for toll-related charges. The AG’s Consumer and Advocacy and Response Division received other similar complaints.

The AG’s investigation found that Xchange Leasing at times charged drivers as much as two or three times for each legitimate toll fee. In addition, improper toll-related penalties were being charged to drivers because the company failed to pay the actual toll charges on time, causing late fees to accrue. Xchange Leasing in some instances overpaid E-Z Pass and then failed to return the refunds to the drivers’ accounts. The company also failed to provide accurate records and account information to drivers about their charges and earning deductions.

The amount of each driver’s reimbursement is linked to the amount they were billed, averaging more than $600 per driver. Through this settlement, Xchange Leasing will also pay a $40,000 penalty to the AG’s Local Consumer Aid Fund, which funds the office’s Local Consumer Programs and Face-to-Face Mediation programs.

Xchange Leasing fully cooperated with the investigation. The company sent letters to the identified drivers outlining the refunds and credits and subsequently issued checks. Xchange Leasing has also implemented process changes and financial controls that will prevent these or similar violations in the future.

This matter was handled by Kim McDonald of the AG’s Consumer Advocacy and Response Division and Gary Klein, Senior Trial Counsel in the AG’s Public Protection and Advocacy Bureau.

波士頓華埠牌樓電影節落幕 甄子丹父母聯袂現身

甄子丹的父母,甄雲龍(右二),武藝大師邁寶嬋(中)與徒弟黃修忻
博士(右起),Jean Lukitsh,李政欣博士等人專程出席。(周菊子攝)
            (Boston Orange 周菊子波士頓報導) 亞美社區發展協會(ACDC)今年的華埠牌樓電影節,827日落幕。影片主角甄子丹的父母雙雙到會,父親甄雲龍致詞,母親創辦的麥寶禪武藝協會示範功夫,為本屆電影節增添更濃本地氣息。
今年選映的3部影片,一部是伍少文執導的我的中國生活紀錄片,兩部是甄子丹主演的功夫片,葉問3”新流星蝴蝶劍
賣寶嬋武藝協會功夫班成員和亞美社區發展協會工作人員合影。
(周菊子攝)
伍少文是知名度正擴增中的紀錄片導演。他拍製的我的中國生活一片,連航空公司都收納進機上影片放映名單。亞美社區發展協會執行長劉安琪就是在飛機上看到該片的。前年他應波士頓亞美電影節之邀,回波士頓隨片登台後,在大波士頓亞裔社團中大受歡迎,一連接到好些個拍片邀約。
甄子丹是星島日報波士頓版負責人甄雲龍與武藝大師麥寶嬋的兒子,曾往少林深造功夫,轉赴香港電影圈發展,從演員成為導、演雙棲,如今不但在國際影壇上佔有一席之地,更被香港影劇記者稱為宇宙第一強,有著逾億票房身價。
星島日報波士頓版負責人,也是電影巨星甄子丹之父甄雲龍,在華埠
牌樓電影節上講話。(周菊子攝)
伍少文和甄子丹都是在波士頓長大的華裔。波士頓華埠牌樓電影節今年只選映了他們兩人的電影,有如特意展現大波士頓華人在電影界的成就。
亞美社區發展協會AVoice的青少年,介紹該會活動。(周菊子攝)
            甄雲龍在華埠牌樓電影節閉幕式中致詞。他說有許多觀眾問過他是如何把甄子丹培養成為電影巨星的。這天,他第一次公開統一回應。他說,要培養一個人,有很多條件,有個人,家庭,社區,整個社會大環境等等的條件。當年功夫潮流興起,甄子丹有音樂細胞,又出身於功夫世家,都是原因。但他們沒想過只把甄子丹單純的培養為功夫高手,而是要求他追尋武術文化。到底,工夫是短暫的,練功夫的人年紀一大,就打不動了,文化卻可以傳承,延伸,交流,擴展。所以他們強調武術文化,藉由電影成為綜合性的藝術,娛樂,以及記載歷史,教育的手段。
黃修忻博士(前左一)率領麥寶嬋武藝協會成員示範太極。(周菊子攝)
            827日晚的閉幕式中,先有麥寶禪武藝協會的學員們在大師姊黃修忻博士,Jean Lukitsh兩人帶領下示範太極武藝,接著甄雲龍致詞,亞美社區發展協會AVoice的兩名青少年分享他們參加AVoice項目,對華埠社區,歷史,有更多了解,對華人社區有更強歸屬感,希望能為華埠做更多貢獻的心路歷程轉變。他們也呼籲支持者捐款,贊助AVoice項目的擴大辦理。
波士頓市第2區市議員候選人Kora R Vakil到華埠電影節活動上拜票。
(周菊子攝)


甄子丹在"新流星蝴蝶劍"這部片中一景。(周菊子攝)