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Uber Seeks Staff Support for Proposal on Drivers as Contractors

Uber app

Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

Ride-hailing giant Uber Technologies Inc. outlined ways staff can support a state measure that would designate drivers as contractors rather than full-time employees, seeking additional backing for a controversial initiative that labor unions and at least one in-house engineer have publicly opposed.

In a companywide email Friday obtained by Bloomberg, Uber’s head of global public policy Justin Kintz said data “show a tight race” to pass California’s Proposition 22, a measure written and funded by Uber, Lyft Inc. and other gig companies that would replace an earlier law designed to treat drivers as employees. Kintz’s email, which includes links to talking points from the Yes on 22 campaign, also suggests ways employees can get involved, including joining a texting bank, and links to a sample email staffers can send to family and friends. Uber will have a special Town Hall-type meeting Oct. 15 to discuss the ballot initiative, featuring several drivers who support it, the email said.

Kintz’s missive highlights the urgency of Uber’s campaign to garner support just weeks before the election for a measure that opponents say will deny drivers crucial benefits. Uber engineer Kurt Nelson came out against the proposition on tech blog TechCrunch this week to flag what he considers overlooked aspects of the measure and encourage workers to do their own research.

Uber’s encouragement of activism contrasts with the mood at some other Silicon Valley companies, including cryptocurrency startup Coinbase Inc., which has banned politicking. Calling it a distraction, Chief Executive Brian Armstrong outlined the prohibition last week and followed up with a severance package offer to any employee who disagreed. About 5% of employees took the package and resigned. Alphabet Inc.’s Google last year posted internal rules that discourage employees from debating politics, telling workers not

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Malaysia’s largest home-improvement retailer seeks $361m in IPO

KUALA LUMPUR — Home-improvement store operator Mr DIY Group of Malaysia opened its initial public offering for bids, aiming to raise 1.5 billion ringgit ($360.6 million) in what would be the country’s largest stock market listing since 2017.

The company on Tuesday unveiled its prospectus, an important step to listing on the main board of Kuala Lumpur’s stock exchange, known as Bursa Malaysia. Mr DIY’s first two attempts at listing — late last year and the first half of 2020 — were shelved amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The offering would give the company a market capitalization of 10 billion ringgit post-IPO, CEO Adrian Ong said at an online news conference after the prospectus was released.

Mr DIY is targeting a retail price of 1.60 ringgit a share, with the institutional offering consisting of 779.95 million shares and 161.53 million shares allocated for the retail offering.

“We today have a 29% market share of the overall home-improvement retail market in Malaysia,” he said, adding that the company has been growing faster than the country’s annual industry average of 10.2%.

“About 300 million ringgit [of the IPO’s proceeds] would be mainly used to repay existing debts,” Ong added.

The offering would be the largest in Malaysia since chemicals producer Lotte Chemical Titan raised about 3.77 billion ringgit in July 2017.

Since Mr DIY opened its first location in 2005, the company has fast grown into Malaysia’s largest home-improvement retailer, with 674 stores across the country and four stores in Brunei. In addition to the Mr DIY core brand, the company also operates two other store chains: Mr Toy, which sells affordable toys, and Mr Dollar, which offers a fixed-price point model.

“We are adding stores at a very fast pace, which suggests that we have confidence in the business,” Ong said. The

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City of Venice seeks input on proposed improvements to Venezia Park

Earle Kimel
 
| Sarasota Herald-Tribune

VENICE – The city of Venice is seeking public input on future improvements planned for Venezia Park both through a Zoom meeting and an online survey.

The city is hosting a Zoom meeting at 3 p.m. on Oct. 15 to discuss the preliminary design for the park and is also conducting an online survey – with hard copies available at Venice City Hall, 401 W. Venice Ave., Venice – seeking additional input, too.

The park, located at 450 Nassau Street S., is located in the Venezia Park Historic District and is part of the original John Nolen plan.

New playground equipment was installed at the park in August.

All proposed improvements are passive and include ADA accommodations, picnic tables, park benches, a walking trail and landscaping.

All proposed park improvement will be funded through impact fees.

No additional parking is planned, and improvements will be placed around the existing trees.

Residents strongly voiced support for the existing population of Australian Pine trees, which are technically an invasive species, when the Venice City Council hosted a special parks meeting in January.

Then, the council urged staff to curtail what had been an ambitious plan to improve the park, using about $1 million in impact fees.

In previous years, the city has backed off any improvements to the park, unless the invasive species is removed.

The online survey is available through Oct. 30 at https://bit.ly/36iuvLi.

Respondents are asked what amenities they would like to see, including bike racks and doggie bag/waste stations.

The Oct. 15 Zoom meeting can be monitored via phone by dialing 1-929-205-6099, then when the meeting ID is requested, enter 870 9676 7738 and then press the # key.

It can be monitored via computer, tablet or smartphone at us02web.zoom.us/j/84757836899. To provide public comment,

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Freeport Mayor’s View: City seeks home improvements grant – News – Rockford Register Star

As we rapidly approach the end of the construction season, the City is quickly working to wrap up a variety of infrastructure projects. We had a busy year executing infrastructure projects and approving additional work that will be completed over the next year and a half.

In the past few months alone, the City completed the $3 million Float Avenue infrastructure project, repaved Sunset Drive, Hurd Street, Boggess Street, as well as portions of Ottawa Avenue and Winneshiek Street. Anyone who has driven over Locust Avenue between Lincoln Boulevard and Pleasant Street will appreciate the much-needed repairs that were conducted in the past week. We are also in the middle of milling the street and overlaying Highland Drive in its entirety and are planning on road repair on portions of South Demeter Drive before the weather, and leaf pickup season, prohibits us from further infrastructure improvement projects.

In addition to these water and sewer projects, the City also began utilizing our $2 million grant to replace lead service lines in the City. While all these projects can be an inconvenience to drivers attempting to navigate the construction zones, we appreciate the patience of the residents as this work is critical for upgrading our City’s infrastructure and improving our quality of life.

If you’ve driven along Burchard Avenue, you’ve no doubt noticed the long-term activity around the water tower, including a large drill. We are in the middle of drilling for our new water well #11. Once completed, this new well will allow us to draw water from the Mount Simon aquifer, which our testing has shown to have even higher quality water than provided by our other wells. Next year you’ll see construction on the water treatment plant that will be built adjacent to the well. Once operational, the well

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In Palm Springs, Bob Hope’s former home seeks $1.5 million

A piece of Palm Springs history just surfaced for sale in the desert as the longtime home of Bob Hope has hit the market for $1.5 million.



a view of a house: The remodeled ranch known as "Home of Hope" wraps around a deck with a swimming pool and citrus trees. (Realtor.com)


© (Realtor.com)
The remodeled ranch known as “Home of Hope” wraps around a deck with a swimming pool and citrus trees. (Realtor.com)

Hope and his wife, Dolores, owned the 1930s home for more than half a century. They bought it in 1946, and after both had passed away, their estate sold it in 2013, according to a plaque on the front gate identifying the property as the “Home of Hope.”

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It’s not Hope’s most impressive Palm Springs home; that’d be found a few miles south, where a Modernist masterpiece built by John Lautner is nestled up against the mountains. The dazzling, futuristic gem broke a record when it sold for $13 million in 2016.

This one’s a bit humbler, fitting five bedrooms and seven bathrooms in nearly 3,000 square feet. The L-shaped ranch house wraps around a swimming pool and features a spacious deck with citrus trees and a retractable awning.

A recent remodel touched up the interior, adding solar panels, custom wallpapers and an upgraded kitchen. Shades of blue color the rest of the tile-lined living spaces, including an indoor-outdoor lounge with a wet bar and a guest bedroom with mirrored walls.

Away from the pool on the other side of the property, a dining patio with a hot tub expands to a landscaped lawn. The property covers about a third of an acre.

Bob Hope, who died in 2003 at 100, appeared in scores of films, including the famous “Road” series with Bing Crosby. His career spanned vaudeville, Broadway, radio, television and film, and he’s also remembered for his live shows for U.S. troops overseas and for hosting the

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