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Published Wednesday, April 13, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 72
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Emergency alert issued over field and woods fires
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The drought has turned much of forest, brush and grassland into tinder, and the national emergency commission issued an alert Tuesday because there are fires in many areas of the country.

The commission said that the dangerous conditions will continue until July. That is when rain is expected to dampen some of the forest and grasslands.

A series of fires broke out near Los Chiles and on the Nicoya peninsula over the weekend.

The commission, correctly called the Comisión Nacional de Prevención de Riesgos y Atención de Emergencias, blamed the drought caused by El Niño for the situation.

The areas involved are mainly in the northern and western parts of the country, including the Central Valley.

Two significant field fires were burning Tuesday near San José, and a field fire in Pavas already caused heavy damage to a series of storage areas and small workshops.

In declaring the emergency, the commission said that the affected areas were much drier than at this time last year.

Specifically listed were the Brunca-Los Santos area in southern Costa Rica, including Pérez Zeledón, the central Pacific, the Chorotega, which involves most of Guanacaste and parts of the Nicoya peninsula, the Central Valley and what is called the Huétar Norte, which includes Upala, Guatuso, Los Chiles and San Carlos.

nicoya fire
Photo courtesy of Gerardo Vargas Rojas
This is an air photo of the Nicoya fire that was burning out of control Sunday.

Several thousand hectares already have been lost to fire near Los Chiles on the border with Nicaragua.  The Nicoya fire between the Naranjo ferry dock and Paquera threatened luxury homes.

The dry conditions are perfect for vegetation bursting into flames due to negligence or premeditated actions, said the commission. A summary cited vandalism and hunters, among other causes.

High temperatures continue to dry out vegetation and creating dangerous conditions, the commission said. As fire fighters found out during the major Pavas blaze, the drought also has cut the water supply used to fight fires.


Another drug plane crashed with the loss of the pilot
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Another presumed drug courier plane has crashed. This mishap was in the sea off  Playa Carate near Puerto Jiménez on the east shore of the Osa peninsula.

The Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas reported one of its crews found a dead man, presumably the pilot floating in the ocean. Law officers also found some aircraft parts and a vehicle parked on land that contained packages of cocaine.

The Fuerza Pública said that officers received a tip about a plane making an unscheduled  landing in the area. The plane may have landed
and crashed while taking off.  The body and
presumed crash site was some two kilometers off the beach.

Investigators also are trying to figure out what happened with a single-engine plane that crashed and burned above Playa Guiones near Nosara on the far Pacific coast Thursday. Two men on the aircraft died.

The security ministry released a list of nine cases involving the discovery of aircraft that were used in the drug trade since 2013. One plane was found last week buried near the beach in Quepos. Most were along the Pacific coast.

The bulk of the crashes appear to have been due to overloading the crafts with drugs.

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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, April 13, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 72
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Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.


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President to lobby for bills at breakfast

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

President Luis Guillermo Solís has invited leaders of the various political parties in the legislature to breakfast today to push a lengthy agenda of bills.

Among them are bills establishing a value-added tax in lieu of the current sales tax, one reinstituting a tax on corporations and a third that would increase income taxes for higher earners and corporations.

Also in the mix is a bill to fight tax fraud. A letter to legislative leaders by Sergio Iván Alfaro Salsa, the minister of the Presidencia, cited disclosures from the Panama papers as a reason for the meeting.

The agenda also includes a lengthy list of bills relating to pensions and two that relate to the interchange of tax information with other countries.

April 30 is the end of the period in which the executive branch controls the legislative agenda. May 1 will see another election of legislative leadership. After that lawmakers can present their own bills.

The breakfast might not be ample enough to change any legislative minds.

The opposition Partido Liberación Nacional bluntly said Tuesday that its lawmakers would not vote for any new taxes unless there were substantial budget cuts by the executive branch. However, the political party did announce its willingness again to back a bill against tax fraud.

The statement came from Silvia Sánchez Venegas, the deputy leader of the party in the legislature.

Rolando González Ulloa, a spokesman for the Comisión de Asuntos Hacendarios, which is considering the tax bills, expressed unhappiness with threats by the president. On his television spot and at the April 11 holiday celebration in Alajuela Solís threatened to punish the country with taxes and drastic measures if the tax bills do not pass, said González.



figures
Museo Nacional photo
Figures based on the animated series will be available Sunday

Museum to feature adventure festival
 
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

There is a pretty good chance that most expats are not well versed in the exploits of  Saint Seiya and the Knights of the Zodiac. The Museo Nacional is ready to fill that knowledge gap Sunday.

The event is the Festival de Verano 2016 starting at 11:30 a.m. Admission is free for Costa Ricans and legal residents.

The theme will be a mix of Roman, Greek and Japanese action adventures.

Expats will not find Saint Seiya at the Catedral Metropolitana. This is a Japanese comic book character who has become a star. The sainthood has been conveyed by the acquisition of some magical robes. The three traditions merge because Saint Seiya and the knights are pledged to defend Athena, the Greek goddess.

This is a story most young men worldwide know if they are under 30. The animated television series came out in 1986 and was an immediate hit.

Complementing the costumed followers of the knights will be displays of small action figures related to the adventure series.

Also on the agenda is performance by the Hip Hop de la Universidad de Costa Rica group, Korean martial arts, stories and music from Japan and the concert band Ninrod 16. Also promised is something called a Spartan tournament and the costume performance art of cosplay. A movie is the finale at 6:30 p.m.

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This is part of a map made in December 1590 by the Flemish cartographer Abraham Ortelius. The map depicted the Magellan flagship, the Victoria, heading west off the coast of South America. The map lacks the finer points of modern maps because crews of that period lacked accurate ways to determine longitude, not to mention satellites.

1580 map
Abraham Ortelius

Spanish conquest of the Pacific featured in Archivo Nacional exhibition
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

When explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa saw the expanse of the Pacific in 1513 he must have been filled with awe.

The explorer was about to spark a wave of exploration and trade that gave the Spanish control of key Pacific lands for centuries. The Portuguese navigator Fernando Magellan in the service of King Carlos I of Spain followed up on the discovery of the Pacific and directed an expedition that circumnavigated the globe.

In modern terms these 16th century efforts were as daunting and foreboding as the U.S. Moon mission or the much anticipated voyage to Mars. In fact, Magellan did not make it home. He was killed in the Philippines in 1521 during a clash with the natives there.

The period from when word of the exploits of the Magellan expedition reached Spain until about 1607 was when the Pacific became a major trade route.

Artifacts from that period are going on display today at the Archivo Nacional to celebrate its 135th anniversary.

The Archivo Nacional promises facsimiles of documents

directly from the Archivo General de Indias in Sevilla, among others. The exhibition is called “Pacífico, España y la aventura de la Mar del Sur.”

There also are maps, ship models and replicas of navigational instruments of the period. There also are early maps of California and some of the Pacific islands.

Organizers note that Magellan’s expedition did not have a choice when the crews circled the globe. Until about 1565 Spanish explorers were not able to return to the Americas from the Pacific because of the winds. They had yet to map out a route that would allow an eastward trip.

Th exposition at the Zapote facility runs until December. The hours are from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Also participating in the exposition are the Centro Cultural de España, the Spanish Embassy, the ministries of Educación, Cultura y Deporte of Spain and Acción Cultural Española. Also providing support are the Museo Nacional de Filipinas, the  Museo Provincial de Huelva in Spain, the Archivo de Bogotá in Colombia, the Museo Nacional de Arqueología Subacuática de Cartagena in Spain, the Casa de Cultura Ecuatoriana de Quito, Ecuador, the Museo del Mar de Vigoin Spain and the Centro Cultural de España in México.


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Red crab swarm deep in Pacific is a big surprise to researchers
By the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution news staff

A research team studying biodiversity at the Hannibal Bank Seamount off the coast of Panamá has captured unique video of thousands of red crabs swarming in low-oxygen waters just above the seafloor.

Jesús Pineda, a biologist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution and chief scientist on the cruise, called the encounter unexpected and mesmerizing. The researchers describe their findings in a paper published in the journal PeerJ.

The team, which included colleagues from Point Loma Nazarene University, San Francisco Estuary Institute, and Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, was working aboard the M/V Alucia.

They captured the video of the crab swarm during a dive in the manned submersible Deep Rover 2 on the last diving mission of the month-long expedition in April 2015.

"When we dove down in the submarine, we noticed the water became murkier as we got closer to the bottom," said Pineda, lead author of the paper. "There was this turbid layer, and you couldn't see a thing beyond it. We just saw this cloud but had no idea what was causing it."

"As we slowly moved down to the bottom of the seafloor, all of the sudden we saw these things," he continued. "At first, we thought they were biogenic rocks or structures. Once we saw them moving, swarming like insects, we couldn't believe it."

The crabs were later identified by DNA sequencing as Pleuroncodes planipes, a species abundant in Baja California and found in the waters off the west coast of  Baja California, Gulf of California, and the California Current.  This documentation represents a new southernmost range of distribution for the species.

"No one had ever found this species that far south," Pineda said. "To find a species at the extreme of their range and to be so abundant is very unusual."

The large aggregation of swarming red crabs was observed along the northwest flank of the Hannibal BankSeamount at depths of 355 to 385 meters (approximately 1,164 to 1,263 feet) in an area of low oxygen level water.

"These crabs have been detected before in similar low oxygen conditions," Pineda said. "It could be that these low oxygen waters provide a refuge for this species from predators."

Also known as tuna crabs because they are favored prey for

crabs
Woods Hole Oceanographic/Jesús Pineda, Yogesh Girdhar
Crabs swarm on the sea floor in view of researchers.

yellowfin tuna, Pleuroncodes planipes are an important food source for a variety of other fish, birds, and marine mammals. They migrate up and down in the water column, which also makes them vulnerable to changing currents.

A few months after the expedition, thousands of red crabs washed ashore onto Southern California beaches during a massive stranding associated with El Niño warming conditions. The researchers wondered if they were the same species as the Hannibal red crabs. After obtaining samples from a beach in San Diego in June 2015, DNA analysis revealed that the Panamanian and the Californian crabs are in fact the same species.

Seamounts are ecological hotspots that are home to thriving communities of unique species. Because less than 1 percent of these underwater mountains have been studied, the mechanisms that make them so biologically productive are not well understood.

The focus of the Panamá expedition was to learn more about both the biological and physical processes that make Hannibal Seamount such a rich ecosystem.

The researchers plan to return to the Hannibal Seamount to further study why seamounts support such high levels of biodiversity.

Vacation, travel and hospitality


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Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money. 

Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk”

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
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Puriscal rental
A peaceful place near Puriscal.
Property is a small house on a 16-acre farm in Desamparaditos, a small village located 5K NW of Santiago de Puriscal. 15 minutes to Puriscal, 1 hour to San José and the airport, all paved roads. House has 2 bedrooms and 1 bath, large  open kitchen/dining/living area and is fully furnished. Nice veranda with great views. Many fruit trees. Private but not isolated with all utilities. Rent $550/month long term, short term negotiable. Tenant pays for electricity and phone. Landlord pays water. No pets, please. In Costa Rica call Liz Guegan at 7187-8577, in the USA call Pete Todd at 970-221-1457 or 720-951-7928.
Peter and Debbie Todd

Central
                                              Valley view

Boutique quality mountain homes for rent located on a small horse ranch on the slopes of the Barva Volcano, Heredia Province. The homes have stunning views of Costa Rica's Central Valley. Located at 7,300-foot altitude, our ranch borders the Braulio Carrillo National Park and the homes are hiking distance to the Barva Volcano crater lake. We offer various rental options for our 1- and 2-bedroom homes. Contact us at Ajsanch783@AOL.COM for more details.
8981-5/28/16

Fully Furnished American style Apartments for Rent
2-bedroom, 2- bathroom, fully furnished American-style apartments with elevator in a secure building in Barrio Amó. Cable, Internet, water included. Shared laundry. Convenient to Parque Morazán,
hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, national registry. $650 per month plus electricity. ½ month security deposit. No lease.  The larger apartments are $650 per month. They have larger bedrooms, living rooms and kitchens. It would be best for the prospective tenants to visit
Barrio Amon
the building to see the apartments.   For more information contact: edificiomorazan@gmail.com  or call Hilda at 2221-7161.
8909-4/17/15




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A.M. Costa Rica's  
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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, April 13, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 72
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Axiom 890 pixels

Cruz is having a hard time
adjusting to New York values

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

With just one week to go before the New York presidential primaries, Sen. Ted Cruz of  Texas is learning firsthand the meaning of its city and state values.

In January, Cruz uttered his now infamous line of attack during a GOP debate, intended to strip businessman Donald Trump of conservative credentials.

"I think most people know what New York values are," said Cruz, calling it a socially liberal city focused on money and the media.

His remarks were seen as an attempt to gain traction with South Carolina's conservative, largely evangelical base of voters, Cruz's stronghold along the southern Bible Belt. Instead, it misfired and insulted an entire city.

Now, with 95 delegates at stake in a hotly contested election year, the Texas senator has had no choice but to attempt to make amends.

It has not gone as planned.

Cruz got a lukewarm welcome last week during a campaign rally in the Bronx, a New York borough that has a large Latino and African-American population.

Amid jeers and protests Cruz endured a poorly attended gathering and was forced to cancel an afternoon high school visit after its students threatened to walk out.  One Bronx resident called Cruz a right-wing bigot.

Elsewhere in New York City, residents have given Cruz a taste of their values.

"Cruz has to go back home. Look at his face," said Bella, an elderly Russian American resident of Brooklyn.

When New York City and state leaders asked the Texas senator to apologize for his comments, he agreed, but with qualifications.

"I apologize to all the pro-life and pro-marriage and pro-Second Amendment New Yorkers who were told by Gov. Cuomo that they have no place in New York because that's not who New Yorkers are," Cruz said, referring to Andrew Cuomo.

But any last-ditch effort to reach out to New York's conservative base may be for naught.

Although Cruz remains in second place among Republicans nationwide, he is running 35 percentage points behind Trump in the state's latest polls.

"He does not like New York. And he does not like the people of New York, and that came out loud and clear," Trump said during a rally in Albany. "His words were 'New York values.' Take a look at the scorn on his face when he said it, am I right?"

In addition, Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who is running second and leads Cruz, launched a new TV ad called "Values," in which a narrator accuses Cruz of divisive tactics, while painting Kasich as a uniting force.

Generally speaking, New York's Republicans are less socially conservative than Southern evangelicals.

But that doesn't mean Cruz hasn't found pockets of support, including members of the Orthodox Jewish Community in Brighton Beach, where many share his definition of family values.

"He stands for moral values. Important to have a strong family unit," said Daniel, a Brooklyn resident. "I'm also grateful to him for his support of the Jewish people."

Others support his tough stance on immigration.

"If someone breaks into your house, you don't let them stay in your house. If someone breaks into the country, we got to send them back," said another.

But Cruz, who rolled his first matzo balls with the Jewish community last week, appears to be running out of time to persuade New Yorkers to choose him over Trump and Kasich.


Ryan says he won’t accept
GOP presidential nomination


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan took an unusual step Tuesday by holding a news conference in front of a room packed with reporters and cameras to announce that he was not going to do something: seek or accept the Republican nomination for president of the United States.

Speaking at Republican National Committee headquarters on Capitol Hill, the Wisconsin representative said speculation that he could emerge from a potential contested convention as the nominee even followed him on his recent tour of the Middle East. He said it was time to put the rumors to rest.

"Let me be clear: I do not want, nor will I accept, the Republican nomination," Ryan said.  For added emphasis he said, "Count me out."

Ryan said he believed that the person who becomes the Republican Party’s nominee should be someone who actually ran for president, and he chose not to run, so he should not be considered. He said this did not mean that he was going to disappear. He said he would continue to speak out because there is a big debate about what direction the country should take. Ryan said he thought Republicans could again be an optimistic party and promote upward mobility and conservative solutions to poverty.

The speculation about Ryan secretly waiting to be a savior at the convention started when some Republicans made it known that they were not happy with front-runner Donald Trump or Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas. Ohio Gov. John Kasich is also still in the race but is far behind his two rivals in the delegate count.

In an interview earlier Tuesday, Ryan laughed when asked whether he was working behind the scenes to steal the GOP nomination away from Trump or Cruz.

"No, I am not," he told a Milwaukee radio station. "This is just amazing. It is just amazing how these things keep going. I am going to try again today to put this to bed."

Some Republican lawmakers have expressed concern that Trump or Cruz might lose badly in the general election, hurting other Republican candidates running for House and Senate seats on the same ballot. Trump is complaining bitterly about the way the party is allocating delegates and has said that if he has the most delegates and is not given the nomination, there might be riots.

To win the Republican nomination outright on the first ballot, a candidate has to win 1,237 delegates. The Republican National Convention will be held July 18 to 21 in Cleveland.


Turtle smuggler given
five years in U.S. prison

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A U.S. federal judge sentenced a Canadian man to almost five years in prison for scheming to smuggle thousands of turtles to his native China.

Federal agents arrested Kai Xu in 2014 at the U.S.-Canadian border with 51 live turtles hidden under his pants, taped to his legs.

Before he was sentenced Tuesday in Ann Arbor, Michigan, Xu thanked the federal agents for putting an end to what he called the darkness of greed and ignorance. The 27-year-old has already served 19 months.

Xu shipped the reptiles to China from the U.S. or Canada, or paid people to smuggle them in their luggage.

He told the judge he needed the money to finish school. His lawyer hoped for a lighter sentence, saying Xu was not a sophisticated international dealer.

Turtles are highly desired in China as pets.


Ortho says it will eliminate
use of bee-harming chemical


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The top U.S. seller of garden pesticides for consumer use is phasing out a chemical widely thought to be contributing to the global die-off of honeybees.

Ortho announced Tuesday it will eliminate the chemical known as neonics in three brands of pest control sprays and powders for trees, roses and other flowers by next year, and in all its products by 2021.

"The decision comes after careful consideration regarding the range of possible threats to honeybees and other pollinators," Ortho general manager Tim Martin said Tuesday. "While agencies in the United States are still evaluating the overall impact of neonics on pollinator populations, it is time for Ortho to move on."

The Environmental Protection Agency is still studying the effects of neonics on bees and butterflies. Other large pesticide manufacturers say all the research to date may be overstated.

But many scientists are convinced that certain pesticides are contributing to killing off  honeybee populations around the world by attacking the bees' central nervous systems.

Honeybees are responsible for pollinating 80 percent of many fruits and vegetables that are part of the human diet and essential for good health.

Ortho is encouraging other companies to follow its lead. It also says it is joining with a group called the Pollinator Stewardship Council to promote bee habitats and educate consumers on the proper use of pesticides.


Sexual orientation causing
threats and boycotts in U.S.

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A debate in the United States over differences between religious beliefs and individual rights shows no signs of flagging. Laws seen as undermining lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender rights in several southern states have sparked protests and threats of boycotts from businesses and entertainers, as well as counter-demonstrations by conservatives.

Hundreds of people gathered Monday in Raleigh, North Carolina, near the governor's offices in a local landmark that formerly was the state Capitol building to support the state's so-called bathroom bill. Signs declaring "No men in women's bathrooms" emphasize a point in the new law that has drawn wide support among state residents who hold conservative political views.

On a nearby sidewalk, a smaller crowd of about 100 people staged a counter-protest. Their chants, "Bigotry is bad for business," "They are preaching hate! They don't represent our state!," were drowned out by the larger group, according to an Associated Press reporter at the scene.

North Carolina's Republican governor, Pat McCrory, signed into law last month an order that bathrooms and locker rooms in public schools, agencies and universities must be designated for use only by people based on their biological sex at birth. Transgender people could only use bathroom facilities matching their preferred gender identity if their birth certificates had been legally changed to reflect their gender transition.

Transgender people are often described as "individuals who have acquired the physical characteristics of the opposite sex or present themselves in a way that does not correspond with their sex at birth."

The new North Carolina law prohibits city and local governments from separately establishing local regulations seen as accommodations to transgender people.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton called North Carolina's new law shameful. A number of high-profile businesses, including Apple and American Airlines, are threatening to withdraw from the state. Rock music legend Bruce Springsteen, who canceled a planned concert in the state Sunday, posted a message on his Web site: "Some things are more important than a rock show, and this fight against prejudice and bigotry,  which is happening as I write, is one of them."

Many businesses have criticized the law, but few have taken specific action against the state. The National Basketball Association and the National Collegiate Athletic Association, which had been considering moving sporting events out of the state as a protest, have since decided not to change venues.

The North Carolina branch of the National Association of Colored People has threatened civil disobedience if the state legislature does not act to repeal the law when it comes back into session April 25.

But Marc Creech of the Christian Action League told the crowd in Raleigh this week that his organization plans to rally in support of the law when the legislature reconvenes. He said "a smear campaign has resulted in unfounded criticism of the law."

North Carolina's bathroom bill is one of many initiatives in states across the U.S. South that are pitting issues of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people against individuals' religious beliefs.

In Mississippi, protests greeted a law signed by Gov. Phil Bryant one week ago. The measure allows business owners in Mississippi, caterers or photographers, for example, to refuse service to same-sex couples. It also would allow employers to determine workplace policies based on their religious beliefs.

"It's not discriminating against anyone. People around the country may be overreacting to it," the Republican governor said. "They need to read the bill and understand that people of faith have some rights as well in this country."

A Mississippi state lawmaker, Jay Hughes, said Monday that he intends to work to repeal the law through "the Mississippi Economic and Tourism Recovery Act," a bill he is sponsoring.

"Mississippi has been here before," Hughes wrote in a post on his Facebook page. "We must give reasonable minds and the principles of democracy an opportunity to be heard. Repeal. All Mississippians are equal."

Canadian musician Bryan Adams, who canceled a planned show in Mississippi this week as a protest, wrote on his Facebook page: "I cannot in good conscience perform in a state where certain people are being denied their civil rights due to their sexual orientation."

Ninety-five prominent writers, including winners of the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize and a former national poet laureate, wrote in an open letter of protest Monday that the law known as House Bill 1523 does not reflect Mississippi's compassionate nature.

"This core kindness, this embracing of wildness and weirdness, is what has nurtured the great literature that has come from our state," they wrote.

The Tennessee legislature passed a bill Monday that would allow mental health professionals to deny services based on their religious beliefs or sincerely held principles.

Democratic State Sen. Jeff Yarbo said denying services based on religious beliefs has legal precedent, but similar exclusions for those with sincerely held principles is irregular and an unheard-of concept.

The state's governor, Bill Haslam, said he will review the final text of the bill before deciding whether to sign it into law.

The Tennessee legislature designated the Bible as the official state book last week, repeating an earlier decision on the same subject. The Bible vote was seen as a repudiation of those who believe such action flouts the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution, which guarantees the separation of church and state in the United States.


U.S. Naval officer suspected
of damaging military security


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A military expert says the U.S. Navy officer who is facing espionage charges for allegedly passing state secrets, possibly to China and Taiwan, may have been in possession of valuable signals intelligence.

A redacted Navy charge sheet says the suspect, identified by an anonymous U.S. official as Lt. Crd. Edward Lin, a naturalized citizen from Taiwan, was assigned to the Navy's Patrol and Reconnaissance Group, which manages intelligence gathering activities.

Andrei Chang, a military expert and founder of Canadian and Chinese Defense Review, said that information about how the U.S. Navy carries out such signals collection operations could be highly valuable to a foreign government.

After a U.S. EP-3 surveillance plane collided with a Chinese fighter jet over the South China Sea in 2001, Chang said, China forced the reconnaissance aircraft to land in a Chinese airport and dismantled it, hoping to get more information about its intelligence gathering capacity.

"With the East China Sea and South China Sea dispute intensifying, and the deterioration of Sino-U.S. strategic relations, the United States frequently sends EP-3 electronic reconnaissance aircraft into the South China Sea and the East China Sea, and to places very close to China's coastal areas," said Chang, explaining that the planes are capable of conducting a variety of radio, telephone and mobile communications operations.

"It can monitor, record, measure and use the information to locate military bases to find out what kinds of planes took off, and what orders were given," he added.

Taiwan's Foreign Ministry declined to comment, but Taiwan's Defense Ministry said the current espionage case is unrelated to its government affairs, and it has no information on the case.

Taiwanese media outlets quoted Defense Ministry generals as saying that, in the past, if any Taiwanese were suspected of espionage, the United States would notify the Taiwanese government and ask them to assist with the investigation, but this time the United States made no contact.

Taiwanese news reports also say the U.S. Navy has accused the suspect of communicating secret information and three times of attempting to do so "with intent or reason to believe it would be used to the advantage of a foreign nation.”

A Taiwanese official who spoke on the condition of anonymity confirmed the suspect is a Taiwanese immigrant, but that "that is the only thing linking this case to Taiwan." U.S.-Taiwanese military exchanges have not been affected by the case, he added.

The suspect, who is also accused of engaging in prostitution and adultery, was apprehended at an airport in Hawaii, possibly while attempting to leave the country.
Real estate-related services (paid category)

COSTA RICA SOLAR
Solr array
SOON with the coming of new power company regulations, we'll be installing PV (photo voltaic) for solar electricity. Yes, at last!
* PV systems: we use Enphase micro-inverters. More flexible. Add panels whenever you like. More reliable than any other system and fully guaranteed!
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Office phone: 506-2446-0543
Cell phone: 506-8898-9398
or 506-8314-8090
OUR EMAIL: Paul.Furlong@CR-Solar.com

VISIT OUR WEB: www.CR-Solar.com

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


Re-Max
If you are looking for information on condos, homes, lots, commercial real estate or development properties our award-winning team of professional agents are ready to help you buying property in Costa Rica. We have over 18 years of experience to educate our buyers in all aspects of purchasing property. Call us or email us today for more information on how to purchase that perfect piece of Costa Rica Real Estate.

Playas del Coco Click Here!

Playa Panama Click Here!

Playa Hermosa Click Here!
Peninsula Papagayo Click Here!

Playa Matapalo Click Here!
Toll Free 1-877-293-1456
Email: michael@costarica-realestate.com

8935-2/7/17

Remax logo
Re/Max Ocean Surf and Sun:

The experts in buying property in Costa Rica, with more than 20 years experience and the largest networked team of agents in the country.  We can help you learn if investing in Costa Rica is right for you with our low-key, educational approach to sales. Our professional agents can tell you more about sCosta Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and commercial real estate.  Call us: Ocean Surf and Sun Int. Realty Ldta at 011 (506) 2653-0073 or send us an email at: info@remax-oceansurf-cr.com
8927-1/28/17

Axiom one

Sierra Collection. Meridian House or Chateau Montage.
Near Parque Nacional Marino Ballena,
Pacific Coast. 
For more i
nformation 

Click
HERE!
Axiom two
The Terraces at San Martin.  Discover the essence of Costa Rica on our Luxury Ocean View Villas . Near Dominicalito Beach and Parque Nacional Marino Ballena.
For more information
Click HERE!

Axiom three
Ellan At Ballena Beach.  Welcome to a world of endless adventure on our beachside condominiums at Ballena Beach, Pacific Coast.  For more information click  HERE!
We will be happy to give all the information you need. Contact:

AXIOM DEVELOPMENT GROUP SRL
Costa Rica Office: +506.4001-2343
Mobile: +506.8367-2466
USA Office: +1.786233-1579
sales@axiomcostarica.com
www.axiomcostarica.com
8906-2/21/16


Rich Coast
                                  Rollover
Costa Rica Real Estate
    2.47 acre ocean view property w/ 2 houses & 2 unfinished apartments $249k!!!
    2 houses and pool furnished, great rental potential walk to the beach $327k w/ owner financing
    2-bedroom furnished condo 400 feet from Jacó beach $179,000

and lots of other great properties! Property listings in Escazú, Herradura, Jacó, Manuel Antonio, Dominical and beyond. We offer efficient, personalized service always protecting our client’s interests. Contact us today with your questions about buying property in Costa Rica. With 11 years experience in Costa Rica real estate.

Have a Property For Sale? Contact Us!
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
www.RichCoastRealty.com
8953-8/29/16

Real estate for sale (paid category)


Dorn Home
Beverly Hills Style House for Sale on Pacific Coast, Guanacaste

Lot of 2,866.33 square meters with three terraces, inside luxury house  property with 326 square meters construction. Two-story house with front porch, entry lobby, living room, dinning room, large kitchen, breakfast room, large cupboard, 3 1⁄2 bathrooms, 3 large bedrooms, the main bedroom includes jacuzzi and balcony. Playground, office, laundry area, garage for two cars, own and municipal potable water supply, electricity service, cable TV system, A/C. Located 700 meters from Las Colinas Golf Course, near the airport, Tamarindo Beach and the best beaches of the country. Excellent construction and great details. Price $349,000.   We have another extra large lot (next to the main property)  priced at $75,000.  For more information, please contact us: Emails:  stanleystephendorn@yahoo.com   or lyacmurillo27@yahoo.com    Call Lia or Stanley phones:  (506) 2653-6417 /   (506) 7079-6577.
8983-5/6/16

Grecia
                                  rollover
UNIQUE OFFER !!!!
Negotiable price. Thirty thousand seventy square meters. The house is seven hundred fifty squared meters, built three years ago. Five bedrooms plus servant's room with bathroom. Each bedroom includes private bathroom. Master's room includes Jacuzzi and hidromassage. Two main living rooms plus visitor's parlor and hall, two furnished kitchens, all ceramic. Nineteen rooms total counting three offices, eight-car garage. Has 220-volt current with three distribution panels. First-quality water plus well, decorated stone walls, recreational area, second house eighty squared meters, hot water systems, cable, telephone, light system throughout property, river, part forest..

For health situation, the owner make a INCREDIBLE DISCOUNT!!!!

ORIGINAL PRICE: $1.800.000    OFFER PRICE: $1.200.000
FINANCING AVAILABLE !!!
 For more information click HERE!
To see more photos click HERE!  To see house video click HERE!

English language contact:
Christian Arce
Phone: (506) 2494-0016
Cell phone: (506) 8309-0173
Email:

Spanish language contact:
Luis Gustavo Jiménez
Phone: (506) 2494-0016
Cell phone: (506) 8707-4016
Email:

Lantz
                                      home
A beautiful American style suburban home just reduced.

A beautiful American style suburban home, 2,700 sq. ft. of living space with 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, front and rear living rooms, laundry area, kitchen and small attached library nook, arched windows and doors and connected hallways, exotic wood interior ceilings and trim, tile floors thru-out. The lot is 835 m2 with mature landscape and orchid nurseries surrounding the house. There is an enclosed workshop and BBQ area in the backyard with lots of storage under roof, plus a nursery for an herb/vegetable garden. This is a very well-kept property with many upgrades, a private feel but yet only 5 minutes from the center of town. Pérez Zeledón is the commercial hub of the southern zone and considered to be one of the best places to live in all of Costa Rica, the perfect size town, not too big and not too small. The beach is 45 minutes to the west and a short drive to the cool mountains is to the east. In between, this large valley has a moderate climate. Pérez has plenty of modern goods and services, an excellent farmers market, private schools, private doctors and clinics, all you need without having to go to the crazy madness of San José. Just reduced to $199,000. Call Jeff: 8725-8176. Email: angelsdad@me.com

8972-6/15/16

San Rmon
                                  rollover
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: mmpeace@hotmail.com 
Check out slide show HERE!
8962-6/3/16

Ocean View Property for Sale in San Ramón
1.5-acre lot with spectacular ocean views. Ready to build. Mild climate year round with an average temperature a cool 74 degrees. Spectacular panoramic views of
land
                                for sale
the ocean and port of Puntarenas during the day, breathtaking views of Esparza at night. Fully titled and owned under a Costa Rican corporation. $50,000. Short-term owner financing available. For more info: www.condojaco.com Contact: Frank condojaco1@gmail.com
8942-9/1/

updated
                                  photo
Jacó beach unique home. First time offered
This house has never been listed.  It is a 3-bedroom, 1-bath home approx. 100 feet above sea level on the only hill in Jacó one mile to the beach.  Totally remodeled to a Gringo house.Has great fenced yard for dogs and a huge screened porch with  great views all around, including a small ocean view.  New in the last two years includes: new kitchen with granite counter, cedar cabinets, all new windows, tile, water system, updated electric & plumbing, superb new AC units (low electric bill), This is half of a duplex with a platted yard.  Other side is the chief of police.  Secure & private.  $169.900. Call Glenn at 506-6214-0056 or goodbuyflorida@yahoo.com.
8933-5/2/16

La Uruca condo
FURNISHED  APARTMENT for SALE.
CONDOMINIO SATURNO, LA URUCA,
OUTSKIRTS of SAN JOSE, COSTA RICA,
Situated three miles west of the capital, eight miles from the airport. Quiet, secluded area within walking distance to a commercial center including a hotel, six restaurants,  next to two bus line stops. Car ownership is not needed. January-March air temperatures are 72 to 80 degrees F. Apartment 1,200 sq. ft (100 sq. meters), on ground floor, indoor  patio. Large windows without bars, parquet floors. Spacious living room-dining area, two bedrooms, maid's room, two bathrooms, four closets  (including walk-in), fully equipped kitchen (refrigerator, washing machine, small appliances, all necessary utensils, work tools).  Many amenities, (pictures, indoor plants, sewing machine, books, keyboard, dishes, glassware, silverware). Annual cost of maintenance about $1,350 includes water, landscaping service, garbage disposal, 24-7 security and property taxes. Price $120,000. Available for viewing:  Mid-January to beginning of April. Contact:  USA :  585 544-4296. Costa Rica : 506 2231-0410
Email:  BORISKOPIT@YAHOO.COM
8914-2/13/16

Cohen
For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant.
Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning.
Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing.
www.hotel4salecostarica.com
www.hotelsescazu.com
hotelescazu@aol.com
Toll free US phone 877-778-8515
410-975-6703
In Costa Rica 8307-0164
8916-7/22/16

San Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: mmpeace@hotmail.com 
Check out slide show HERE!
8897-3/2/15

Grecia casa
Mountain home for sale
in Grecia.
Less than a year old. Owners are motivated.  All information regarding the home as well as many photos can be found at Mountain view home for sale Grecia, Costa Rica.   Contact email:   djake888@yahoo.com
8846-4/10/16

puriscal photo
Costa Rica home for sale $163,500 / 2bedroom - 1,984 ft2

Central Valley view home: 10 minutes from Santiago de Puriscal and shopping, hospital services, and soon Maxi Pali. Only one hour to San José or Pacific beaches.
- On .55-acre lot with river on one boundary
- Area under roof, 1,984 sq. ft., Area inside walls, 925 sq. ft. Steel, recycled
      Styrofoam, and concrete construction.
- 2 ½ years old with central living room and kitchen, 2 bedrooms and 2 baths,
       ceramic tile throughout.
- Central Valley volcano and SJO airport views from every room.
- Vaulted ceilings give bright open feeling.
- Entrance from concrete road to large graveled parking area
- VERY energy efficient with VERY low property taxes.
- Covered attached carport with entrance to front door or laundry-guest bath
       door.
- 2 carport storage bodegas.
- 12 foot x 14 foot storage bodega
- Security lights, And Amcrest day & night video recorder system.
- Producing banana trees, and mango, bread fruit, and guanabana trees
     planted.

Includes: Refrigerator, gas stove & oven with electric grill element, microwave, electric washer-gas dryer stacked style, gas on demand whole house water heater. Other furnishings are negotiable. ICE electric service and land line phone. Bajo Burgos Water district. Metro-wireless WiFi is available. Tigo Star Satellite T.V. House is in a Costa Rican corporation, will transfer shares. Contract indyj5vw@yahoo.com or call 506 2416-9324.  Additional photos are available on Flickr album
8844-5/11/16

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact: manager@crbusiness.biz.

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

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A.M. Panama
A.M. Colombia
A.M. Guatemala
A.M. Honduras
A.M. Cuba
A.M. Nicaragua
A.M. Venezuela
A.M. Central America
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Cybersecurity draft bill gets bad reviews

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services


One of the most anticipated pieces of cybersecurity legislation took a step forward late last week in the U.S. Congress, but most analysts have not been kind to the new measure.

The Hill newspaper published a discussion draft of the bill from Sen. Richard Burr, a North Carolina Republican, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a California Democrat who is on the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence.

Discussion drafts are often short on detail. This one was only nine pages long.  But they provide valuable insights into the priorities of its authors and the key principles they seek to establish.

The bill would require covered entities, including digital device manufacturers, software manufacturers, electronic communication services or any person who provides a product to comply with court orders seeking access to information or data in an intelligible format or assistance necessary to obtain such data.

That could cover many thousands of individuals as well as private tech companies, and includes emails, texts, contacts or any other information stored and shared digitally, an expansive definition.

Lance Hoffman of George Washington University, who founded the school's Cyberspace Security Policy and Research Institute, says "It’s way too vague, there's too few safeguards, and I don't think there's any consequences enumerated if a covered entity doesn’t follow the law."

Hoffman says, "Worse though, is where it gets down to covered entities, well that could be anybody. It might even apply to any individual who happens to use an app that obscures data in any fashion."

Susan Hennessey, a fellow in national security in governance studies at the Brookings Institution says the bill "creates a generalized obligation for . . . covered entities . . . to preserve some ability to access communications. That’s sort of the formalized back door that Silicon Valley has always warned about.”

Ross Schulman, senior counsel with New America’s Open Technology Institute says the bill mandates, "Thou shalt do this’ but doesn’t grapple with any of the difficult questions of how one actually goes about doing it."

But Ms. Hennessey says the bill "preserves the kind of flexibility that legislation around technology needs to preserve."  She said the bill is tethered to responding to court orders and is not a limitless mandate, but a clarification of Congress' expectations regarding encryption.

"This is in some respects what Apple and others have been calling for: a decision from Congress, not the FBI resorting to the All Writs Act. So Congress is saying: we have decided, and this is our expectation.," Ms. Hennessey said.

Schulman said the authors of the bill  "didn’t do a whole lot of hard work to think about the implications. It would make illegal whole swathes of the infrastructure that we’ve painstakingly put in place over the last 25 years to make the Internet a secure place to live and do business."

Ms. Hoffman adds, "There’s little doubt this bill would certainly inhibit innovation in the United States."
 
"What I would say to members of Congress is first, do no harm.  Don’t mess up something that's given the U.S. great advantages and continues to do so. What you really need is a solid risk analysis: an examination of the web’s architecture, it’s functioning, and the consequences of any new regulatory action," Ms. Hoffman said, adding:

"If you change the Internet’s architecture, you might be able to build a stronger, more secure system, but it would be a lot less useful.

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Monetary Fund cuts estimate global growth rate

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The International Monetary Fund says global economic growth has been too slow for too long and that this disappointing growth rate could worsen. 

The Fund’s newest World Economic Outlook cuts the global growth forecast two-tenths of a percent to 3.2 percent.

The agency's researchers also say the U.S., Japanese and European Union economies will grow more slowly than previously estimated.  The study says China is likely to grow slightly faster than previously expected.

The Monetary Fund says recent global financial turbulence saw investors growing more worried and more timid, abrupt sell-offs of risky assets, higher interest rates for loans to emerging market nations and sharp falls in prices for oil and other commodities.  Continued violent instability in many nations, including Syria, has created a humanitarian disaster as millions of refugees seek safety in other nations.

The authors say the surge of refugees to Europe, coupled with other economic strains, is prompting a rising tide of inward-looking nationalism that hurts economic integration.  The report also expresses worries about the backlash in the United States against open trade. 

The report calls on policymakers to take advantage of current low interest rates to invest in infrastructure and research, providing an immediate and long-term boost in growth and jobs. 

The Monetary Fund also calls on national leaders to prepare to cope with economic troubles, warning that the fragile global economy leaves less room for error.