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(506) 2223-1327                          Published Monday, June 17, 2013, in Vol. 13, No. 118                  Email us
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Got a problem? Facebook is where the action is
By Garland M. Baker
Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Government institutions in Costa Rica are usually impossible to reach on the telephone.  Sometimes the phone just rings and rings. Other times one gets a phone tree that states "dial 'this' for 'that.'"  If “that” answers, usually it knows nothing about the “this” one was calling about.

Many expats need assistance in English because they do not speak Spanish.  Many times it's almost impossible to find someone who speaks English well enough to help them with a question or a problem on the phone.

Xochilt Quesada, an assistant to an expat, found at least one solution to get answers.  Facebook!  Unbelievably, there are people dedicated to answering Facebook messages on their institutional Web sites.  Xochilt now gets answers to questions at the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social in minutes when she used to spend hours on the phone just waiting for someone to answer.  She also solved a worker’s compensation problem with the Instituto Nacional de Seguros when the institution would not accept the monthly forms.  The person assisting her walked her through the process using their chat system.

Many expats do not like social media and most of all Facebook.  They believe it is for the younger generation and a total waste of time.  Well, this may be true, but think about it for a moment. Who works as assistants and secretaries in most of these governmental workplaces?  Yes, younger people who eat and breathe Facebook.  What a great way to work the day away, chatting with friends and family while occasionally assisting someone who truly needs attention.

Some of the Web sites have people full-time just answering queries. Others have their Facebook page monitored part-time and replies to messages may take a few days.  It is uncommon not to receive a reply.  The Municipalidad de San José is one example. It usually takes three to four days for workers there to respond, but they do answer.

Sometimes it is easier to get an answer in English than on the telephone.  This could be because offices choose language-skilled employees to oversee their Facebook presence.  Pulling in co-workers to help answer messages is also easier when using chat than during a telephone call.

For the expat who does not know how to use Facebook, it is simple to use.  First, an account is
required.  They can be set up at http://facebook.com.  Facebook requires minimum personal information, adding more is optional.
 
Visiting any of the links for Costa Rica’s government and other agencies shows a timeline of events and news about their organizations.

The secret to getting answers is in the message drop down box right of the like box under the cover picture.  Clicking on this box will open a window and display an email-like interface.  The “to” field is already filled in. One just needs to type in the message section.  There is also an option to attach files or photos.  Click “send” when done.  Sometimes an auto-responder returns a notice indicating the message is queued for response.  Many of the agencies listed also have online chat systems on their Web sites and a Facebook query directs a user to the chat system.

Many of the institutions that use Facebook as a public relations tool summarizing news and events also use Twitter, a service that enables its users to send and read short text-based messages to keep followers up-to-date on current events.  Private messages via Twitter to these institutions also elicit rapid response in many cases.  The government of Costa Rica uses Twitter extensively to transmit all kinds of information to the public and the press.

Expats may want nothing to do with social media in light of the news about the National Security Agency’s snooping.  Privacy is a concern for everyone.  However, almost everybody uses email, and setting up a Facebook page with minimal information and strict privacy settings is pretty safe. 

Here are some safety precautions:  When one opens a Facebook account, the privacy settings are set to everyone. Which means no privacy.  To fix this, one needs to log into and click on “Account,” (the gear icon in the upper right corner) then on “Privacy Settings.”  This section “Privacy Settings and Tools,” is where one can control who sees what.

Social media gets its bad press for sure.  However, it is an evolution in communication.  If used correctly, it can be a great tool and one that could prove to be useful when trying to fix a problem or find an answer to a question in this country.

Garland M. Baker is a 42-year resident and naturalized citizen of Costa Rica who provides multidisciplinary professional services to the international community.  Reach him at info@crexpertise.com.  Baker has undertaken the research leading to these series of articles in conjunction with A.M. Costa Rica.  Find the collection at http://crexpertise.info, a complimentary reprint is available at the end of each article.  Copyright 2004-2013, use without permission prohibited.

Here are the links to key Facebook pages
Banco de Costa Rica (BCR)   
https://www.facebook.com/BancoBCR
Cuerpo de Bomberos de Costa Rica (Fire Department)
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Benemerito-Cuerpo-de-
Bomberos-de-Costa-Rica/100524590030186

Banco Nacional de Costa Rica (BNCR)
https://www.facebook.com/bnmascerca
Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (Social Security Administration)
https://www.facebook.com/ccssdecostarica
Cruz Roja Costarricense
(Red Cross)
https://www.facebook.com/cruzrojacostarricense
Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería Costa Rica (Immigration)

https://www.facebook.com/migracioncostarica
Instituto Nacional de Aprendizaje (INA)
https://www.facebook.com/pages/INSTITUTO-NACIONAL-
DE-APRENDIZAJE-INA/374620729455

Instituto Nacional de la Juventud (MIDES-INJU)
https://www.facebook.com/midesinju
Instituto Nacional de Seguros
(National Insurance Administration)
https://www.facebook.com/InstitutoNacionaldeSeguros
Instituto Meteorológico Nacional Costa Rica (Weather Institute)
https://www.facebook.com/institutometeorologiconacional.prensa
Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes (Transportation Ministry)
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Ministerio-de-Obras-Publicas-
y-Transportes/141524109195178

Ministerio de Trabajo y Seguridad Social (Labor Ministry)
https://www.facebook.com/TrabajoCR
Organismo de Investigación Judicial (OIJ)
https://www.facebook.com/pages/Organismo-
de-Investigacion-Judicial/162025663834408

Policia de Transito de Costa Rica (Traffic police)
https://www.facebook.com/pages/POLICIA-DE-
TRANSITO-DE-COSTA-RICA/212892178758906

Municipalidad de San José
(San José Municipality)
https://www.facebook.com/MunicipalidadSJ
Patronato Nacional de la Infancia (PANI)
https://www.facebook.com/PatronatoNacionaldelaInfancia


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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, June 17, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 118
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Sportsmen's Lodge

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.


Dentistry

Dr. Vargas

Dental implants in Costa Rica

Call us: Within C.R.  2225-1189
From USA    1-866-7060-248
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Or email;
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Psychological Services

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√ Consulting services in education.
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√ Consulting services in sports
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Dr. Pablo Quirós, License #8486
We are located in Escazú Corporate Center, 6th floor. Phone number: (506) 2201-4718
Web: www.psicologia.ws
Email: info@psicologia.ws
7919-7/15/13


Psychotherapy

Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
California Licensed Psychologist
25 years experience
Dr. KLycinda
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Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
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Phone : 2203-4954

www.DrLucindaGray.com
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Real estate agents and services

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Looking for a second home, a business opportunity or just a piece of paradise to retire?
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Clinas
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COLINAS DEL SOL
Jim Day, retirement specialist Representing Colinas del Sol del Pacifico, S. A
A fenced and gated project with the ex-pat hortaculturalist in mind. There are 88 clear-title hobby farms with water and electricity.  The layout is designed to provide ample space for your vegetable gardening ands fruit tree projects.
You can see more on our Web site: www.colinasdelsolcr.com
 Libertad, Guanacaste, Costa Rica, 15 minutes to Playa del Coco or Playa Hermosa
and 20 minutes to Liberia airport.
Please contact Jim Day at JimDay50@aol.com   or    Phone:  001 517 484-3675.
7858-8/26/13

Grecia logo
Grecia Real Estate
Here in Costa Rica, Central America , the most beautiful houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
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Great climate and safe communities.
Great deals for you!
SEE OUR OFFERS HERE!
Visit our Web site: www.greciarealestate.com
Contact Christian Arce in English:
Cell phone (506) 8538-6186
Contact Luis Arce in English: 
Cell phone (506) 7100 8489
Contact Luis G. Jiménez in Spanish:
Cell phone (506) 8707-4016
Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
7827-5/4/13


CR Beach

CR Beach Investment Real Estate
reminds you that Costa Rica’s #1 beachtown,“the new Jacó,” invites you to see the recent changes:  clean paved roads; more bilingual police; more trendy & tipico restaurants; new a/c movie 4plex & new theatrical-conference center; new central park with activities; more bargain priced properties for sale, and lower priced rentals…
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Let CR Beach show you why we know this is the best area for you to  invest-retire-enjoy!
Special Offer this Week: Best Condo deal in Jacó
Best Home deal in Hermosa: HERE!
Member of the N.A.R., the Costa Rican Real Estate Board CRGAR and the Central Pacific Chamber of Commerce.
www.CRbeach.com    info@crbeach.com
Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 
Office: 2643-4334, 2643-3672
Located in the heart of Jacó. IL Galeone Center, Jacó, Costa Rica
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Residency experts

Residency in Costa Rica
A full service immigration agency
U.S. and San José offices
Getting and authenticating documents can be a chore —

we know how to do it. Experienced with many nationalities. Up-to-date on
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www.residencyincostarica.com
Tel: (323) 255-6116
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Insurance

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Homeowners, Fire, Natural disaster, Car, Business & more
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A turnkey home and project completion agency devoted to creative vision and flawless execution. We provide a single, solid and dedicated point of contact for the duration of your real estate project, specializing in:

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Our primary goal is to assist our clients with a smooth transition to occupancy while providing highly personalized and distinctive services. We have refined the process to be a hassle free experience, especially valuable for clients who live abroad. We customize to suit each client’s personal taste, lifestyle and budget.
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Email: info@casadelpacifico.com
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Office phone: (506) - 2288-5644
Web: www.casadelpacifico.com
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Legal services

FULLY BILINGUAL ATTORNEY
& NOTARY PUBLIC

Arcelio Hernandez

Official English/Spanish translator and interpreter
Serving the international community  since 2001
Lic. Arcelio Hernandez Mussio, Jr.
With over a decade of experience in the fields of:
Family law, criminal & constitutional law, civil & commercial law

Visit the website at:  CRTitle.com
Email: lawyer@crtitle.com
Cell: 8710-9827
Skype:  hernandez.mussio
Serving the Great Metropolitan Area, Central and South Pacific
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Member of the Colegio de Abogados de Costa Rica
Lawyer ID number: 12.358
7923-10/15/13

KEARNEY-LAWSON & Asoc.
Lic.Gregory Kearney Lawson.
Attorneys at Law and real estate brokers
Relocation services, Wedding Planning
Greg Kearney
 
*Investments  *Corporations
*Tax Shelters *Immigration
*Real Estate Sales in Costa Rica
*Name & Product registration
*Business procedures 
*Family and Labor Law
*Locate People   *Private Investigations
  Phone:  7157-7092
 Phone: (506) 2232-1014
7920-10/11/13

RE&B Attorneys S.A
Attorneys & Notaries
Tels: 2201-8012/2637-7640
USA phone number: (305) 748-4340
Email: info@rebattorneys.com
Web: www.rebattorneys.com
REB Abogadso logo
Our law firm offers services
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Immigration Law✔
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Hotel/Resort Development✔
Customs and International 
     Trade✔
Our offices are located in Costa Rica:
San José, Plaza Roble.
Playa Herradura, CC. Ocean Plaza.
7899-6/22/13

ONE STOP LAW OFFICES OF
MARIO VALVERDE BRENES
Attorney At Law – CPA

Mario Valverde
Everything you need to do and stay in business in Costa Rica. We'll incorporate you, take care of your immigration status, get your legal permits and licenses, keep your books and taxes and represent you in any legal process, either civil, commercial, criminal, tax, labor, family and torts.
 
We've been helping people like you since 1986.
 
Contact us at: (506) 2215-0001; (506) 8312-3087
Email: mario.valverde@ice.co.cr
7841-8/11/13



Accountants

U.S. Tax International

Plus Costa Rican taxes, accounting, and legal services
Over 15 years in Costa Rica
(English Spoken)
C.R. 2288-2201   U.S 786-206-9473
FAX: 2231-3300
E-mail: ustax@lawyer.com
8000-9/5/13

U.S. Income Tax
David G. Housman Attorney & C.P.A
.
in Costa Rica 32 years.
Specializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad, including all new passport and other
Goliath
I.R.S.  filling requirements foreign income tax exclusion (to $95,100 per year) for all back years. Taxpayers filling past-due tax returns before I.R.S. notice do not face criminal sanctions
• Associate of James Brohl
Phone: (506) 2239-2005 Fax 2239-2437

E mail: papahound@comcast.net
7667-10/17/12

James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  US GAAP Accounting
& Business Consulting

Uncle Sam's
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• US Tax return preparation  for
individuals and businesses
• eFile returns: secure with faster refunds
• Assist with back reporting and other filing issues
• Take advantage of the Foreign
Income Tax Exclusion (up to $
95,100 in 2012}
• Business Consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica
• Accounting for US and International Financial Reporting
• Associate of David Housman

Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620
E-mail jrtb_1999@yahoo.com
7410-4/1/13


Sala IV raps Osa on zoning
and voids some concessions


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Sala IV constitutional court has voided certain maritime zone concessions in the canton of Osa because the municipality may have included protected forests and mangroves in the agreement.

That was reported last Friday by the Poder Judicial. The court also ordered the municipality to abstain from similar acts.

The court decision is believed in response to an appeal targeting the Crocodile Bay resort and its plans for a marine at the southeastern tip of the Osa Peninsula. The resort and locals who oppose the plan have been in and out of the constitutional court this year.

This latest decision finds the plan regulador or zoning plan of the municipality to be faulty and does not directly mention any developments.

Crocodile Bay is planned to sit on 44 acres and include 80 villas that range from one to three bedrooms with from 1,000 to 2,300 square feet, a 100-slip full service marina and a 74-room hotel.  It is projected to bring between 800 and 1,200 jobs to the area, the firm has said.

The dispute over the project has been going on for about 14 years. The only mangrove in that section of the Osa peninsula is at the mouth of a local river where the resort plans its marina.

A.M. Costa Rica outlines the opposing sides of the dispute HERE!


Female companion dies
after being shot in head


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Police and investigators detained a 22-year-old Grecia man shortly after his 21-year-old female companion suffered a bullet wound to the head Saturday night.

Agents aid that the couple lived in Barrio Lotes Murillo in the center of Grecia and that neighbors heard a loud argument about 9:30 a.m. Saturday. The argument was terminated by a report of a gunshot, they said.

Emergency workers took the woman, identified by the last name of Rojas to the Hospital de Grecia where she died Sunday morning.


New species of tiny fish
found by Caribbean sub


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Scientists at the Smithsonian Research Institute in Panamá said that two researchers there have found a new species of small Caribbean fish.

The fish, only about 2 centimeters in length (less than an inch) was captured by accident. The Smithsonian's Deep Reef Observation Project in Curaçao operates a sub that is used to collect fish down to 300 meters. The new species belongs to the genus Haptoclinus which is commonly known as blennies. The new fish has the common name of  four-fin blenny due to its unusual dorsal fin, said the Smithsonian.

The Latin name is Haptoclinus dropi in honor of the Deep Reef Observation Project. The researchers are Carole Baldwin and D. Ross Robertson, said the Smithsonian.


Blocked roads threatened
if demands are not met

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

About 700 persons who say they used to extract gold from what is now Parque Nacional Corcovado threaten to block highways if they are not compensated.

The former gold panners say they want special handling of a measure that will give each of them 5 million colons, about $10,000.

They are getting support from the Asociación Nacional de Empleados Públicos y Privados, which reported their plight.

Corcovado became a national park more than 20 years ago, and gold extraction was prohibited, even though illegal panning goes on now.

At the time, between 1986 and 1992 some 350 former gold miners were paid off some 200,000 colons each, The 700 say they should have been paid too. The money would come from the Ministerio de Ambiente y Energía.

Among the roads they threaten to block if they do not see action is the Interamericana Sur.


Our reader's opinion
Off-topic jab questioned
regarding our editorial

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:
 
Toward the end of an otherwise focused "Opinion" (A.M. Costa Rica, June 10), the author added an off-topic jab at the Obama Administration stating that millions of dollars were being spent bringing terrorists to the United States.  Having read nothing about such a program, I questioned the newspaper as to their meaning and received a response ending with the suggestion that I "...write a letter saying that the U.S. is not bankrolling visas for Muslims and such."
 
While I could find no information in even the most reactionary web sites attesting to the newspaper's claim, I did discover in Invest.com that DHS has a list of approximately 1,000 assumed terrorists within the U.S. who have overstayed their visas or otherwise obtained entry.  But the article continued to say that less than half had entered the country since Mr. Obama became President.  I found no reference to "millions of dollars" being spent.
 
While I find AM Costa Rica's assertion that all Muslims are terrorists, that being the unusual assumption of the Republican UberRight of West, Bachmann, Walsh and Buchanan both false and offensive given the fact that the overwhelming number are not, I equally question A.M. Costa Rica's indifference to those who have helped us in foreign wars equally appalling.
 
Since the time of the Cuban Revolution and through the Bay of Pigs, Nam, and Gulf One, both the Left and Right have joined in the belief that those who put their lives in danger assisting our cause deserved protection, most often political asylum in the United States.  Most recently, the Administration has been under fire for not providing more protection for Dr. Shakil Afridi, the Pakistani who assisted us in locating bin Lauden.  And the criticism, justifiably in this case, was most rabid from the Right. 
 
Thus I challenge A.M. Costa Rica to back up their claim that the Obama Administration is spending millions bringing terrorists to the United States noting that I will not challenge them on their assertion that all Muslims are terrorists.  That is just too blatantly false as to deserve anything but derision.
 
Kent Carthey
Playa del Coco
and San Francisco, California


 
Find out what the papers
said today in Spanish


By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Here is the section where you can scan short summaries from the Spanish-language press. If you want to know more, just click on a link and you will see and longer summary and have the opportunity to read the entire news story on the page of the Spanish-language newspaper but translated into English.

Translations may be a bit rough, but software is improving every day.

When you see the Summary in English of news stories not covered today by A.M. Costa Rica, you will have a chance to comment.

This is a new service of A.M. Costa Rica called Costa Rica Report. Editor is Daniel Woodall, and you can contact him
 HERE!
From the Costa Rican press
News items posted Monday through Friday by 8 a.m.
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Proposed law tightens up kiddie porn, cyber bullying penalties
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A legislative committee has approved and reported out a bill that updates crimes over the Internet as they relate to minors.

For example, the proposed law criminalizes the use of a minor's stolen identity online and specifies a penalty of from one to three years in prison. Also criminalized is intercepting the communications, images or personal data of a minor without permission. However, there does not seem to be a penalty for creating a minor's identity online which many pedophiles do.

A summary to the bill notes that many of the changes are updates to existing laws that seek to address new developments.

Among these is a prohibition against distributing dangerous games online. The summary describes such a game as one that encourages young Internet users to put a noose around their necks to experience a high from strangulation. The penalty for doing so runs as high as four years in prison if the Internet user dies as a result of the game.

There are a number of prohibitions against various forms of pornography which specifically address the use of minors for
 producing such material or even simulating the presence of a minor.

The legal changes also address cyber bullying and harassment as well as texting sexual messages.

Although the new provisions may seem like overkill when compared to existing law, two sections prohibit publicity about sexual tourism when minors are used. An existing law already prohibits promoting the country as a sex tourism destination, although the measure does not seem to be enforced.

The current proposal also would seem to be difficult to enforce because of the universal nature of the Internet. Alexa, the Amazon.com Web tracking company, lists four international porn sites in the top 100 sites viewed in Costa Rica. One is ranked in 50th position, well above NetFlix and even the Radiográfica Costarricense Web sites.

Under the law, these porn companies would be guilty of a crime if they allowed minors to sign on.

Fundación Paniamor is among those outside entities supporting the measure.


Someone forgot to keep an eye on the backhoe in Moravia
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The award for the most brazen thief this month goes to the person who drove off a backhoe from a Moravia shopping center.

Backhoes are not exactly speedy devices. Somehow a thief got into the cab of the earthmoving device June 1 and drove it away. The details still are uncertain and may never be known. Judicial agents got the backhoe now but not the thief.

Agents said that they were alerted by a confidential call where they could find the machine. They found it in Gautuso doing what backhoes are supposed to do: moving earth. Highly unlikely is the idea that the backhoe propelled itself to the Alajuela community.

Of course no one on the property had any idea how the backhoe got there. The owner said that he has contracted out the job of earth moving. But no one from the contracting firm happened to be around Thursday evening when agents showed up, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.
backhoe
Judicial Investigating Organization photo
This is a bit too big to shoplift.

Del Rey HOtel

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, June 17, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 118
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Break in the weak rains also will be weak this year, according to the forecast
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The little summer of San Juan is supposed to be a time when the rains cease for a period of days and bring conditions resembling the dry season to the north Pacific and the Central Valley.

This year the rainy season has been weak, and much of May and June has seen conditions like the little summer, called veranillo de San Juan in Spanish.

The Instituto Meteorológico Nacional said Friday that the veranillo also will be weak this year. The chance of the dry period lasting from June 21 to the end of the month is highly unlikely, said the weather agency.
The forecast is for a break in the rains due to atmospheric conditions of no more than five days, the agency said. And only the Pacific coast and the Central Valley are involved.

The weather period gets its name because it is supposed to begin on the day Roman Catholics celebrate the birth of John the Baptist, hence the San Juan. That's a tradition and not a meteorological fact. But this year, by coincidence, the weather forecast calls for the break in the rains to take place starting June 21, the birthday of John the Baptist.

In years when the rain is heavy, the veranillo is anticipated by much of the public. This year, it seems, the weather will continue dry with some thunderstorms as it has been.

 
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 *HIGHEST SUCCESS RATE
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Geroge's view
An evening View
from George’s Puriscal home
Meet many Expats who are willing to share their experiences and how the tour has value long after the “lust” wears off.
See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!
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Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
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Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat
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Toll Free: 1-888-828-9245       In Costa Rica: (506)-2478-0023 or 8333-6863

Our Vision at Leaves and Lizards Arenal Volcano Cabin Retreat is to create the perfect blend of Adventure, Discovery and Tranquility for each guest.  Plan an Adventure zooming along a zip line high in the canopy or horseback riding though forests, farms and rivers. Discover the magical wonders of the flora and fauna of Costa Rica. Experience Tranquility in one of our cabins tucked in our 26 acres. Located in Monterrey, San Carlos, in the mountains above Fortuna, we enjoy spectacular, panoramic views of the Arenal Volcano and its lava flow. Please see our Web site for more information. www.leavesandlizards.com or e-mail us at leavesandlizards@gmail.com.
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Christ Howard with Max
retiring in Costa Rica,  and who has personally helped over 10,000 people with ALL BUDGETS relocate SUCCESSFULLY over the last 35 years. CUSTOM TAILOR-MADE TOURS are also available for people with special needs or who can’t take one of our fixed-date tours. ALL tours include EXTENSIVE touring and a highly informative SEMINAR by the country’s most renowned EXPERTS in their respective fields. Also visit: Live in Costa Rica to check out our NEW tour prices and specials.  Customer satisfaction 100% guaranteed! MY REFERENCES.

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Panama Vacations
Custom, all-inclusive vacations to Panama by 100% locally based experts in Panama.  See "the new Costa Rica" before the secret gets out!  We offer customized trips to the best all inclusive Panama hotels and Panama resorts. Call 1-866-393-4192 if from the U.S. or 00 (507)-264-1279 from Costa Rica.
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A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Business
wanted
Real estate wanted

Real estate rental services (paid category)

See our listing of real estate brokers on the for-sale page.

Real estate for rent (paid category)

One-bedroom furnished apartment for rent
One-bedroom furnished apartment in central San José, Barrio Amon...Calle 3B between Holiday Inn and Mona Lisa (Clarion Hotel) . Another in Barrio Otoya. Both available NOW for quiet, low-key, non smoker. Includes high-speedIinternet, cable TV, electricity, water, washer dryer and safe. Excellent security. You only pay the rent, $600 monthly, 3-month minimum plus $600 deposit. Call 8816-0796 in the US 540-319-4300 view picture HERE!
8006-7/14/13

COMPLETELY and nicely furnished apartments
apartment view
in San José, and one condo in Escazú. Fast Internet, cable TV, hot water. Large American appliances including washer and dryer. Both convenient locations. No pets. $600 per month. Contact: rentnowcr@gmail.com or call 8555-9819.
7990-7/17/13

prime
                                    properties
ATTENTION EXPATS:
 
We have many prime properties available for long-term rentals.
Rohrmoser
Escazú
Santa Ana
 

  rentals.sanjose@gmail.com
7988-7/17/13

cahuita beach house
Unique beach house for rent in Cahuita
$400 per month furnished. House is 150 yards from a beautiful beach in a jungle area. Next to our wildlife rescue center. Very safe, good water and electricity. One large bedroom, walk-in closet. Newly built and furnished. Must see. A tropical paradise. Contact: Todd at 2755-0014.
7985-7/4/13

House to Rent or to Share
Conveniently located  two-bedroom, two-bathroom house, new construction, wheelchair accessible to rent for $750/month or to share with owner (female).  Located on outskirts of San José metro area, 5 minute drive to Sta. Barbara de Heredia, 20-30 minutes from SJO International Airport, an easy drive to Alajuela
Heredia home
or Heredia.  Natural setting with a panoramic view of Central Valley on a 1/3 acre lot (1,200m2).  The house is 900 ft2 (90m2) plus there is a spacious terrace, two-car carport, covered back porch and ample additional parking.  Vaulted natural wood ceilings in all rooms except in the two bedrooms, bathrooms and laundry room.  There is
also a small office which can serve as a guest bedroom. The house is unfurnished and appliances not included except for built-in cooktop/oven (gas). Tankless instant hot water heater for bathrooms, kitchen and laundry.  Rental fee does not include utilities.  Alarm system,  cable TV and DSL internet connections are in place. The owner will rent to 2-3 people, pets are allowed with the approval of the owner, and security deposit of one month's rent is required.  Alternatively owner can share house with suitable roommate, prefer female (non-smoker) but will consider a male roommate.  E-mail me for more photos or with questions:  linda.barton@yahoo.com
7984-7/3/13

ALAJUELA – SERENE LIVING
MONTHLY $800 TO $1,200

Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.
7968-7/17/13

Lovely cottage on private coffee farm
One spacious bedroom, one bath, office room/spare room with high speed DSL internet, fully equipped kitchen, phone line,
Sarchi cottage
balcony with beautiful view, especially at night with the far off lights of San José. Farm is gated and guarded, private and peaceful, owner on-site. Sarchi is a quiet small town about 30-40 min from the airport, a perfect base to explore from and also get a
feel for normal, day-to-day Tico life. Rental is $575 per month, 3 months minimum. All utilities included. Shorter stays at $45 per night, 2 nights minimum. $225 per week, and $30 per additional night. Sorry, no pets.  Contact jogya345@yahoo.com or 8308-7732.
7956-6/16/13

Beautiful Golfito house for rent in Costa Rica: $300/month
Available now and please see the video!
http://youtu.be/7N5BThdct8s
New construction includes some wooden stairs to the main gate and a small pavilion above the house overlooking the village. The distance to Golfito harbor/downtown is 7 kms and you can get there by car, taxi or bus. The sale price is $72,000 which is negotiable and includes the property lot of 26,000 sq, ft, for more houses. The rent is $300/month, which is very reasonable for those who want to live near sea and Panamá in an inexpensive lifestyle. It was so nice to live near Panamá where people can shop for much lower prices including for groceries. Please contact me at berosyyourlife@hotmail.com for more details. Thank you.
7954-6/8/13

Available now $650 a month
This small but new and clean American-built house is settled on an organic farm a 10-minute walk from the center of town in Santa Bárbara de Heredia. Taxis are $1 to town and buses run to
Organic farm
Heredia and Alajuela, about 30 minutes each. There is parking for one car. NO DOGS please. Rent includes: Cable television, house phone, ICE ADSL internet, water, electricity, laundry facilities. We have a family living on the farm aside from myself,  the owner, and another renter, so there is always someone around. This 2-bedroom house is brand new, 
completely furnished. Large windows overlook the valley and the gardens, There are large trees. Surrounded by fruit trees and vegetable gardens, it has a beautiful view of the valley. The kitchen comes fully equipped, with large refrigerator, gas stove and oven, all accessories. The bathroom has a large shower; both kitchen and bath have hot water. A brand new extra firm queen-size bed is included. A breakfast bar separates the living area and kitchen and a porch overlooks the farm and valley. This house is for one or two people only. $300 deposit required to be returned when renters leave house. Email for photos and questions. laurelfanderson@gmail.com
7945-5/30/13

Heredia rental
Beautiful mountain chalet  for rent
Beautiful mountain chalet surrounded by nature, built with tropical hardwoods and  located on a  5,000 m2  (54,000 sq feet) lot  with two other cottages.  House has basic furniture and  kitchen  appliances.  Ground floor:  Very large living/ dinning room, kitchen, office (or guest bedroom), and 1 bathroom . Upstairs:  2 bedrooms (one with a balcony), and 1 bathroom. 140 m2 approximately  Great BBQ rancho outside. Plenty space for visitor parking. Pets are welcome.  Quiet place, rural, restaurants close by. Near El Castillo Country Club, Tirol and La Condesa mountain hotels.  Only 45 minutes by car from San José.  All public services available  More information call Liseth.  Phone: (506) 7158-1548. Or send me a email:  licortes@hotmail.com
7939-5/24/13


COMPLETELY and nicely furnished apartments
apartment view
in San José, and one condo in Escazú. Fast Internet, cable TV, hot water. Large American appliances including washer and dryer. Both convenient locations. No pets. $600 per month. Contact: rentnowcr@gmail.com or call 8555-9819.
7975-6/16/13

Perez  Zeledon:   Large studio home overlooking river with deck.  Elegant, ceramic floors, nice cabinets, walk-in closet.  Beautiful gardens and grounds.  Secure. Private. Only  10 minutes
River view home
to San Isidro de El General. Mountain town with everything!  Then, 40 minutes to Playa Dominical, 40 minutes to Chirripó National Park, and also near many other attractions, yet very private and secluded.  Listen to river sounds and sleep like a baby.   
Rare birds in abundance. Includes,  One  double bed and refrigerator, stove, juicer, sofa, tables,  dishes, pans, etc.  Plus, electric, (hot) water   Phone, TV connected, Internet cable connected, garbage and gardener. All included for $425. /month.  Looking for one good person, reliable, long-term.    Non-smoker. jjpepman@hotmail.com
7902-4/25/13

Manuel Antonio long term apartment for rent
This modern two-bedroom apartment with a breathtaking view of the Quepos town and the Pacific Ocean is situated near Manuel Antonio National Park and beaches. The location offers a unique experience in the edge of the jungle, where you can observe wildlife. The apartment has two separate bedrooms and sleeps three guests maximum. The bathroom has a walk-in shower and a toilette. The living room is furnished with very comfortable furniture. The kitchen is fully equipped. Public transports like taxis, bus station, port as well as shops, groceries, restaurants, cafes, bars, and nightlife are within a very short distance. Fully furnished, all bills included (water, electricity, cable tv, wireless internet), $575 per month, 6-month minimum. Contact us now!!! 8853-8245. or see our
Web page:  www.brunxu.com  
7901-4/25/13

Mountain cabin for rent
Sacramento, Barva de Heredia
We offer for rent three furnished, 2-bedroom mountain homes located on the slopes of Barva Volcano, Sacramento, Heredia. The cabin-style homes are adjacent to the Braulio Carillo National Park and walking distance to the Barva Volcano crater lake. Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and garage. Take in breathtaking views of the Irazú Volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of bird species, to include the occasional Resplendent Quetzal, and a pristine cloud forest. We can also offer you an occasional ride on one of our beautiful mares. Contact Allan or Cristina at HPCattleCR@aol.com, or or for more information HERE! $850 USD/month. We can also offer a weekend or short-stay package.
7875-4/11/13

Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for your stay in this beautiful part 
tropical
                                    homes
of Costa Rica. We are offering homes for every budget and every need. Please visit our Web page at www.tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or contact us at rentals@tropicalhomesofcostarica.com or call at (506) 2654-5442.
7833-8/15/13

Looking 4 Costa Rica Villas?
Rent our all-inclusive, 7 bedroom rental home in Guanacaste.  Just 20 minutes from the Liberia airport, this deluxe ocean view mansion sleeps 6-22 guests.  Ideal for company events & Costa Rica weddings. With 3 meals served daily and a full-time staff to pamper guests, it's more than a Costa Rica vacation rental ...It's your own Private Resort!  Call toll free: 1-800-606-1860.
7695-1/19/14

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What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details


A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
Cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, June 17, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 118
Sports
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Opinion
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bookstore promoe



Hong Kong residents rally
to back NSA whistleblower

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Hundreds of people rallied in Hong Kong Saturday in support of former U.S. government contractor Edward Snowden, who fled to the semi-autonomous Chinese city last month after confessing to leaking documents on two top secret U.S. surveillance programs.  To many, the case raises questions about Snowden’s choice of Hong Kong as a haven as he fights an expected legal battle against extradition and the broader implications regarding the secrets he has revealed.

Amid monsoon rains in the city where Snowden remains in hiding, hundreds of Hong Kongers, expatriates and tourists marched on the U.S. Consulate.

Participants delivered a letter for Ambassador Stephen Young, condemning U.S. cyber monitoring activities exposed by the former security consultant who fled Hawaii May 20.

Teacher’s Union representative Tsui Hon-kwong compared Snowden’s case to that of Chinese dissident Shi Tao.

“In 2004, Shi Tao blew the whistle and told the world that the Chinese government had given secret instructions to all the press in China that nothing about June 4 commemoration must be reported," said Tsui. "The Chinese government got his name from Yahoo.  Many Americans supported Shi Tao.  I suppose it  is our turn this time to support this American who is undergoing the same ordeal.” He referred to the 1989 crackdown in Beijing's Tiananmen Square.

Snowden recently told a Hong Kong newspaper that the United States has been hacking local and mainland targets since 2009.

Charles Mok is a legislator and information technology expert.  Snowden’s revelations, he said, risk allowing Beijing to legitimize its Great Firewall and other cyber-monitoring activities within and beyond China.

“I hope that in the end we are not going to see people justify totalitarian regimes snooping on their own people, just because even the Americans are doing it," he said.  "I do not deny that there is a certain need of security and monitoring that needs to go on, but where do we strike the balance and what is the right level of transparency?”

From the U.S. Consulate, protesters continued on to Hong Kong government headquarters to deliver another letter.  Organizer Tom Grundy appeared delighted by the turnout, which he estimated at 900, in contrast to a police figure of 300.

“I think Hong Kongers reactions are a mix of bewilderment and pride that Ed Snowden chose Hong Kong.  You can see we have hundreds of people here, 28 groups, which is unprecedented for Hong Kong,” he said.

Last year though, more than 100,000 people gathered outside these same offices in protest against the imposition of Chinese patriotism classes in Hong Kong.  Just two weeks ago, another 60,000 gathered for the annual vigil in memory of the Chinese government's June 1989 crackdown on student protesters in Tiananmen Square.

Marchers blew whistles and chanted, "No Way, NSA."  Some, though, voiced concern that organizers had missed the broader debate emanating from Snowden’s disclosure that U.S. Internet companies have been providing the National Security Agency, or NSA, information on foreigners suspected of terrorism.

Professor Francis Borchardt has lived in Hong Kong for two years.  The U.S. citizen stood in the rain listening to the speeches, his 3-year-old daughter perched on his shoulders.

“I’m a little bit disappointed with the way the organizers framed the whole issue," he said.  "The issue for me at least is much broader.  It's about the surveillance state and about keeping tabs on how that is progressing and how it is continually intruding on our lives. Just talking about this one NSA issue, just talking about Edward Snowdon, yeah, it's is important, but it's not the whole story.”

Snowden is reported to have fled to Hong Kong because of the city’s civil and political freedoms.  YK Law, director of Hong Kong Human Rights Monitor, questioned that decision.

The former British colony has an extradition treaty with the U.S., he explained, and in 2004 forcibly deported a Libyan dissident, allegedly at the request of U.S. and U.K. authorities.

Law also warned that since the resumption of Chinese sovereignty in 1997, Beijing can legally intervene in Hong Kong matters related to national security and foreign affairs.

“So if the Chinese authorities intervene, then Hong Kong will have very little role to play.  I think China will probably see it as a good opportunity to embarrass the States, and they will be happy to see that dragging on,” said Law.

As the march concluded, Hong Kong’s Beijing-appointed leader, Leung Chun-ying, released a statement promising his government would handle Snowden’s case in accordance with local law.

While the director of the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation, Robert Mueller, is vowing to take swift action against Snowden, by Saturday night, the U.S. had yet to initiate proceedings to extradite the 29-year-old confessed leaker.  This past week, Mueller told lawmakers that a criminal investigation has been opened into the leaks, which he said have dealt a blow to U.S. national security.


U.N. seeks to show impact
of war on world's families


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Ahead of World Refugee Day Thursday, the United Nations refugee agency is kicking off a campaign to highlight the impact of war on families.   International celebrities are lining up in support of the millions of refugees who have been forced to flee their homes, but harbor dreams of resuming the lives they left behind.  The campaign runs until the end of the year. 

Several celebrity videos that show how warfare can change a family’s future in just one minute.  But, the video does not just send out a message of despair, it holds out the hope of a better life for refugees even in the midst of hardship. 

Chief of Strategic Communications at the U.N. agency, Leigh Foster, says the aim of the so-called “1 family” campaign is to expose the devastating impact of war on families.  She said record numbers of people, of families have been fleeing wars in Syria, in Mali, in South Sudan and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

“We wanted to remind the public that the victims of war are just like you and me.  They are families. They are families of moms and dads and grandparents and not necessarily what we hear about in the media of rebels and combatants and military forces and that sort of thing.  We really wanted to bring it to the human level so everyone can understand who the victims really are," said Foster.

Among the well-known celebrities participating in the campaign are classical singer Barbara Hendricks U.S. Country superstar group Lady Antebellum; best selling author of  “The Kite Runner” and former Afghan refugee, Khaled Hosseini; and international supermodel and former refugee from Sudan, Alek Wek. 

The celebrities are sending out messages to sensitize the public to the plight of refugees.  They would like the public to stop thinking of refugees as statistics, and to think of them as individuals. 

Ms. Foster says the campaign is asking the public to contemplate the same heart-wrenching decisions that families have to make when they flee.

“It is basically getting people to take a minute and think about what it would be like if they had to flee and by doing that, we are trying to get the public to contemplate what it is like to leave everything behind and also to really understand who refugees are and why they need our help," said Ms. Foster.

Ms. Foster says the more than 40 million people around the world who have been forced to flee their homes are included and counted in this campaign.   She says recent conflicts have forced record numbers of families to leave everything behind.   She says an estimated two families flee from violence or persecution each minute.


Sounds from the Eiffel Tower
will become new music piece

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Star of songs, sketches and the silver screen for over a hundred years, the Eiffel Tower is now taking the lead role in a musical composition which will see the landmark speak for itself.

The structure is an instrument for a piece to be entitled “Tower Music,” a project conceived by U.S. composer Joseph Bertolozzi.

With latex mallets, drumsticks and even a large log wrapped in lambs wool in his box of tricks, Bertolozzi moves all over the 324-meter tower, hitting its surfaces with varying intensity and recording the sounds produced.

The idea is to weave them together, creating chords and melodies over a percussion base.

Bertolozzi's team have collected since May 27 nearly 2,000 samples from the iron structure's railings, panels and girders.

The 54-year-old who lives in New York, said that the idea came from his wife.

“My wife was mimicking the way I play my percussion with my arms flailing and everything. She was near a poster of the Eiffel Tower, took a swing at it and she went 'Bong!',” he said.

Inspired to make music with the monument, Bertolozzi had to overcome practical difficulties, notably his lack of French and the fact he had few contacts in Paris.

He first decided to start small with a composition for New York state's Mid-Hudson suspension bridge. The resulting “Bridge Music” spawned a CD which reached number 18 on the Billboard Classical Crossover Music Chart in 2009.

For the organist and choirmaster whose day job sees him perform at weddings and bar mitzvahs, the tower is an instrument just like any other.

“A guitarist knows the character of each string, one string is wound with metal, another one is maybe gut string, they're thicker, they're thinner, they know how they respond. So when I look at the tower, now more than before, I know how the thing will respond as an instrument,” he said.

He says that he has a tendency to bash out rhythms on household objects, citing dinner glasses, doorknobs and dishes as regular targets.

Most are bemused by Bertolozzi and his entourage of sound technicians and producers, but he had some support on Friday with one pair of visitors improvising a rap to the beat he drummed out on one of the structure's many staircases.

When the work is finished in nine months, Bertolozzi says he dreams of coming back to perform it live at the Eiffel Tower to celebrate its 125th birthday in 2014.

Organizers said the show would require over a hundred musicians with microphones installed all over the iron structure, relaying sounds to the public below.

The tower's managers are still to be convinced, citing possible security concerns.


Illinois community basks
in glow from Superman

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Since 1938, a red-caped superhero impervious to most earthly pitfalls has captivated the imagination of comic book, television, and movie fans around the world.  Superman has become a cultural icon of the United States, and the merchandising and promotion of the character is a multi-billion-dollar industry worldwide. The release of the newest Superman movie, "Man of Steel," is helping one small Illinois town cash in on its connection to one of the most beloved comic book heroes of all time.

Plano, Illinois, has a population just under 11,000, and is as American as the flags flying throughout the downtown streets.

Plano Mayor Bob Hausler said, “I would say a great Midwestern small town, and we epitomize that.”

Hausler was in charge of the city's government in 2011 when a Hollywood production company came to town. “There was a lot of secrecy about what the storyline, and even who the main character was.”

But in a town as small as this, it’s hard to keep a secret. Once the trucks, lights, and movie cameras moved onto Main Street, news quickly spread it was not just any Hollywood movie, but the big budget "Man of Steel," a new version of the beloved and iconic comic book hero Superman.

“It was very exciting that our town would be picked for a major motion picture. I used to watch him on a black-and-white TV, and it was one of my favorite shows growing up,” said Hausler.

For several weeks in the summer of 2011, film director Zach Snyder, along with hundreds of cast and crew members, transformed Plano, Illinois, into Smallville, Kansas, hometown of Superman’s adopted parents Jonathan and Martha Kent. The location plays a significant backdrop in several key sequences in the new film.

Resident Jim Martens is the chairman of the Smallville Superfest, a three-day-long, city-wide party dedicated to the fictional character that has helped put Plano on the map of the Superman universe.

“We really couldn’t believe something as big as Superman could be filmed here,” he said.

Martens said that even before its release, the movie attracted fans from far and wide. “They had to get a piece of the action and see what was going on.”

Hausler said the increase in tourists has brought new life to Plano’s Main Street. “We have seen more and more of the vacancies being filled with retail spaces and other shops.”

Some of those businesses embraced the connection to "Man of Steel," keeping the artwork created for the movie sets on their storefronts. Hausler said preserving the look of the fictional Smallville helped Plano get through the recent economic downturn.

“From 2011 we’ve actually seen our sales tax revenue grow just about every month since then. We’ve had that much economic growth,” said Hausler.

While visitors may not be able to see the superhero known for traveling faster than a speeding bullet, or more powerful than a locomotive, they can soon visit a Smallville museum in the town’s historic train station, featuring movie set props and other items related to the filming of "Man of Steel."


Google goes to the skies
to provide Internet coverage


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Google scientists have launched up to 30 helium-filled test balloons into the skies above New Zealand, with the dream of bringing the Internet to nearly five billion people across the globe without access to the World Wide Web.

The technology giant unveiled the project Saturday in Christchurch, where some 50 volunteer households have begun receiving Internet signals beamed from the balloons to their home computers. The wind-driven balloons are floating 20 kilometers above the earth and are designed to remain airborne for more than three months.

Project leader Mike Cassidy said engineers hope to provide much cheaper Internet connections in undeveloped and developing areas of the world. He cited current Internet costs in large parts of Africa, where monthly access costs are higher than monthly salaries.

Cassidy, speaking to reporters, called the project a "huge moonshot, a really big goal to go after." But he also described the potential results as life-changing for billions of people across the globe.

The initiative, called Project Loon, was developed in the same top-secret Google X laboratories where scientists are developing the prototype driverless car and Google's web-surfing eyeglasses.

Google says the thin plastic, high-pressure balloons hovering over New Zealand carry navigational equipment, solar-powered panels, radios and transmitters. The balloons receive Internet signals from ground stations and then relay those signals to small specialized antennas on rooftops below.

Engineers are also touting the potential benefits of the balloon transmitters in areas that have lost communications because of violent storms and earthquakes.



U.S. to spend $1.25 billion
to promote Obamacare signups

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

In the final months leading up to the launch of the key piece of President Barack Obama's healthcare reforms, the administration is preparing a public-education campaign designed to connect directly with the audience most critical for the law's success.

The effort will focus on selling the merits of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act to 2.7 million Americans with little or no health coverage, who are 18-to-35 years old, mostly male, and largely nonwhite, including many who are black or Hispanic, officials involved in the planning said.

The idea is to get them enrolled in private health plans through online marketplaces that will offer coverage in all 50 states at prices defrayed by federal subsidies, which many should qualify for because of their lower incomes and lack of adequate insurance.

Participation of young consumers is central to the success of the new state healthcare exchanges, and Obama's reform law, because the young tend to have little need for medical services and are cheaper to insure. That will compensate for older, sicker people who are expected to sign up in droves because the law bans discriminatory pricing and treatment for those with preexisting conditions.

Some supporters of the 2010 law have worried in recent months that the administration was not doing enough to inform this group, and the public generally, about changes the reforms will bring. Of particular concern is the word on the healthcare exchanges, where individuals and families with low-to-moderate incomes will be able to purchase private health insurance at prices set according to income.

Current and former administration officials said the outreach will employ the same methods used in Obama's reelection campaign, which relied heavily on social media, grass-roots organizing and demographics to reach young people, minorities and women. Members of the young target audience tend to be concentrated in major metropolitan areas, and about a third are believed to live in just three states: California, Texas and Florida.

"Whatever happened in the past 3-1/2 years, this is the most important moment now because we're no longer dealing in abstraction. Millions of people are going to be able to touch and feel something," said David Simas, who oversaw opinion research for Obama's reelection. He became a deputy senior adviser to the president in February and is one of the leading advisers for the campaign.

Due to begin this month, the marketing push will cost hundreds of millions of dollars and will complement promotions by private groups including the nonprofit Enroll America, which is headed by a former Obama White House aide and supported by healthcare groups, private companies and consumer advocacy organizations.

Officials say the government outreach will be covered by about $1.25 billion the administration has scraped from funds within the Department of Health and Human Services and the original congressional allocation for implementation.

Republicans in Congress have blocked new money for the effort so they can use its failure as a winning issue in the 2014 congressional midterm election campaign. House Republicans just voted to repeal the law in what was their 37th attempt to kill or defund some part of it.

The objective is to surround low-income young adults with messaging about the healthcare benefits by tapping channels more apt to reach them: cable television, radio, churches, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, online chat rooms and youth-oriented magazines. The White House and Health and Human Services are also in discussions with celebrities, sports leagues and franchises that may be willing to help promote coverage.

The Spanish-language cable networks Univision, Telemundo and impreMedia are already considering a nationwide expansion of their joint media program, which has been praised by Obama, to advocate for healthcare reform in California. The three news competitors have agreed with a private healthcare foundation, called the California Endowment, to encourage Latinos to enroll in the state's health insurance exchange by sponsoring print, television, radio and Web-based promotions.

One White House official said the youth-targeting strategy was so important to the success of enrollment that if it didn't work, none of the larger efforts would make a difference.

The Affordable Care Act, widely referred to as Obamacare by many Americans, has already begun to bring fundamental changes to the $2.8 trillion healthcare system through a series of reforms aimed at lowering out-of-pocket costs, improving access to preventive care and encouraging new healthcare business models intended to restrain cost growth.

Beginning Oct. 1, the law will also begin offering subsidized health coverage to millions of low-to-moderate income people through the online state-insurance marketplaces and an expansion of the Medicaid program for the poor in states that accept the provision. Coverage begins Jan. 1, when the law takes full effect, and individuals who don't have it will face a penalty that begins at $95 in 2014, rising to 2.5 percent of annual income in 2016.

The government aspires to sign up 7 million uninsured and under-insured Americans in the first year of reform.

Obama has avoided the bully pulpit since signing the healthcare legislation into law, according to former advisers who concluded that strong public opposition would not begin to change until after the reforms became tangible.

But the president has made two public appearances over the past month to explain the ACA benefits. During the Oct. 1-to-March 31 enrollment period, he will do more, though sticking with the soft sell, said administration officials.

Critics complain the White House has adopted too low a profile on health reform so far, and fear the effort to explain to a skeptical and in many cases misinformed public is coming too late to persuade them that participation is a good thing.

One of the most prominent recent critics has had a change of heart. Democrat Max Baucus, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, sounded the alarm in April about how few details were shared with Congress about outreach efforts. He warned of a coming train wreck if the administration were to fail to enroll enough Americans for coverage.

The comment, which was zealously seized upon by healthcare reform's Republican foes, clearly worried the White House. Since then, Chief of Staff Denis McDonough has taken on a more prominent behind-the-scenes role by holding meetings every two weeks with Baucus on healthcare. He chats as often by phone with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.

"I'm more confident about implementation today," Baucus said in a statement in response to a query. "The administration has been much better about keeping me and my colleagues up-to-date on their efforts."

To prepare for the autumn enrollment, White House officials say Sebelius and her lieutenant, Marilyn Tavenner, administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, will travel this summer to meet with local leaders and community organizers as part of a ``soft-education campaign'' about coming benefits.

By the time the marketing push gains momentum in September and October, government officials say an important messaging advantage will be working in its favor.

As many as two-thirds of the intended audience, they say, have had insurance coverage but lost it after being laid off or switching to an employer who doesn't offer it. That means the message can focus on the cost and relative value of the plans. Pricing information is still being worked out, but premiums will run more than the penalty. One fear is that the $95 disincentive is too low to prompt young people to pay more for insurance they may not believe they need.

The worry is unwarranted, said Simas. "When you ask a 26-year-old male or female why they don't have insurance, they say they can't afford it. 'The job doesn't offer it, I can't afford it.' Rarely will you hear that it's not important."



Real estate-related services (paid category)


Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)


Swimming pool at night
A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.

For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 2228-5961 or 8339-2112. www.costaricarealtyone.com
7938-6/8/13

Re/Max, the Pacific coast expert
Re/Max offers comprehensive Costa Rica Real Estate, vacation rental and relocation services. Our award-winning team is the largest in the country, and can show you the best lifestyle and financial investment properties in the most desirable locations including prime real estate in Tamarindo, Langosta, Conchal, Flamingo, Pinilla, Coco, Hermosa and Playa Panama.  Give us a call in Costa Rica at 506-2653-0073, or toll free from the U.S. and Canada 1-800-385-5930. Re/Max, the name you trust for the finest real estate services in Costa Rica.
7949-11/15/13

Moran Arenal
Lake Arenal, Costa Rica
The undiscovered jewel of Central America, 35 square miles of blue, pristine, clear water ideal for fishing, swimming, boating, Real estate values still low.
Great lake front, river front land, farms, homes, condos and commercial property. Some with owner financing
 
This is far and away the most beautiful place in all Central America — cool climate. Try our two-day, all-inclusive discovery tour for $299.

Check with our Web site at www.moranlakearenal.com
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
Email: moranrealestate@gmail.com
Moran logo
7922-10/15/13

The #1 Authority in Costa Rica Real Estate

Costa Rica real estate
Since 1996, CRREC has been providing the most valuable resource for discovering real estate in Costa Rica. Our Costa Rica properties database contains some of the most exclusive and hard to find properties in the country. Not to mention how affordable some of our Costa Rica homes for sale are. So if you're in the market for Costa Rica real estate then we encourage you to
visit our Costa Rica MLS and discover for yourself why people call CRREC the #1 authority in Costa Rica real estate.
Call Today @ 506-2654-5507 (Costa Rica) or 1-888-414-1836 (Toll-Free) Email: info@costaricarealestate.com
7721-4/29/13



Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.
Grecia estate
This is the BIGGEST DEAL of the month now at $850.000: HERE!
Sarchi home
Modern three-bedroon home in San Rafael de Sarchí. Cick HERE!
 Great deals for you!
SEE OUR OFFERS HERE
Visit our Web Site:
 www.greciarealestate.com
 English: (Cristian Arce)
English:  (Luis Arce)
 Español: (Luis G. Jiménez)

   (506) 8538-6186
   (506) 7100-8489
   (506) 8707-4016

  Send us your request to our email: info@greciarealestate.com
7685-2/7/12
Bargain

Real estate for sale (paid category)


auction
6 LOTS – AUCTION
Minimum bid starts @ $10,000.
 ½ acre to 4 acres.
Walk to San Juanillo Beaches.
1 day only -10 a.m. June 15
Email: Karen@racsa.co.cr
Webs:  www.viviun.com/AD-129905/
www.haciendasdelmar.com
Phone: 506-2682-0185
8007-6/29/13

music studio
Musicians dream!!!
Two-story house, 2,400 sq. ft. (223 sq. mt.) total with covered porches, 2-car covered parking, 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 baths, open kitchen/living room, bodega, laundry room, upstairs sala. Separate 320-sq. ft. (29 sq. mt.) music studio that could be used as an art studio, workshop, or additional bedroom. Studio has a patio on top, partially covered with ozonated hot tub. Mature citrus trees, avocado, mango, pineapples, bananas, and many colorful flowers. Completely fenced, security system, Internet, cable TV, automatic gates, one-car additional secured gravel parking. Double lot, 7,320 sq ft (680 sq mt). Backs up to a large cafetal and looks up to Natural Reserve Madre Verde. Located in La Granja, Residencia Palma Real, Palmares, Alajuela. Walking distance to town, 5 minutes to pista, 35 minutes to airport, and close to bus service. Comes with kitchen appliances, washer and dryer, bed set in master bedroom, shoe cabinet just inside front door. Other furnishings negotiable. More pictures available upon request. House and property are in a corporation. $215,000. terrycr2007@gmail.com
7998-74/13

Grecaiproperty
Private Gated Paradise in Grecia 3/2 home with guest apartment, 5000m2 land $169K, River access, costaricariver@yahoo.com, Phone: (506)2495-0487.
7953-7/10/13

Flamingo
                            view
Condo for sale in Flamingo

Ocean view 3-bedroom, 3 1/2-bathroom condo. Designer furnished 1,800 square feet, gated community. Only six units. Huge pool and balcony, pet friendly, parking, walking distance to Flamingo beach, banks, grocery store, farmacia, etc. New building. $349,000 asking. Ask for photos. 8705-0056. or 1-800-536-2322.
7986-8/6/13

Casa de Eden
For sale by owner Playa Conchal home. Reduced $329,000

Casa de Eden is an ocean view three-bedroom, 2.5-bath, with outdoor shower, private pool located only minutes from Playa Conchal.  The home is in a private, secure community surrounded by nature but still only 20 minutes to the resort towns of Flamingo & Tamarindo and less than an hour from the Liberia airport. There is 2,600 square feet under the roof, which includes a large outdoor terrace and has phone, Internet & satellite TV. The home boasts luxury finishings: AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire professional series stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, ceramic tile.  Contact desmondproperties@gmail.com  U.S. 1-800-939-2617 or CR (506) 8349-2025.
www.puntaplayavistas.com
7982-6/30/13

San Pedro condo
Condo for Sale in Flor del Este
Lourdes, Montes de Oca San Jose

Located behind The Foundation Costa Rica Canada 500 meters north of Inglesia Lourdes. U Latina, UCR, and U Fieditas are located within 5 minutes.  Beautiful mountain view from roof covered 3rd floor terraza. Condo is a 3-story. Three/four-bedroom, three and half bath unit within a secure complex of 40 condos with high cement outside walls with only one entrance manned by an armed guard 24 hours per day. In addition, to security fencing, and electric wire, a recorded security camera system is monitored within the guard house. Residence has a telephone communication system to contact the guard house. In addition there is a green park area inside the complex for children to safely play and an outside parking area in from of guard house for visitors. Equipped with an independent wired security system in addition to iron bars on windows and patio doors. Equipped with circuit breaker box and 220-volt service for hot water heater, stove and dryer. Also has water storage tank under parking area and water pump to maintain high pressure on all three floors. American-style washer and electric dryer, Refrigerator, glass top stove, and kitchen cabinets included. $185,000. Other furniture items may be available for purchase.
Call Bill   (English) C.R. Phone: (506) 6011-6987
U.S. Phone:  6630-886-4458  or   (305) 848- 5577
Spanish  phone number: (506) 8799 4041
Email:  sjogringo@yahoo.com
7973-8/23/13

Guaancaate condos
Little Dreams La Colina Magnolias

Great Guanacaste Beach Condos Available

$28,500 - Little Dreams - Ocotal beach studio condo, furnished upper floor condo in great complex just 1 mile from Ocotal beach, 2 miles from Coco beach, great price for this complex.
$70,000 - La Colina - another Ocotal beach 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo, 80 m2 and fully furnished with upgraded kitchen, complex has Infinity pool, mountain views.

$75,000 Magnolias 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath townhome just 1 minute's walk from Coco beach and the 2 beach clubs in Coco. Nicely furnished, walk to town, 67 m2, perfect location.
Find out more information on these and other condos at my website WendyLovesCostaRica.com. All 3 of these condos are about 35 minutes away from Liberia Intl. airport, no need to drive a long way to get to your condo.  Call for more information, 1-415-670-9382 or 011-506-826-1211. Or email Wendy@WendyLovesCostaRica.com.
7971-6/23/13

Rich Coast Montage
RichCoastRealty.com
Central Pacific Coast Real Estate
- 2 Bedroom House in Gated Community near the beach, $89,000!!
- Beachfront Residential Lots from $35,000! Financing Available
- 2 Coffee Shops and Bakeries Turnkey $40,000/ $120,000 Great ROI
- Lots in Gated Community near the beach from $17,500!!
- 3 Bedroom House in Gated Community, furnished, walk to the beach, $120k
- 3 Bedroom Oceanview House on 5 acres subdividable
into 4 oceanview properties $250k
- 58 acre Oceanview Property subdividable, $169k
and much more....
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718 9891
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
7972-8/9/13

NOW REDUCED TO $680,000
ALAJUELA – PRIVATE COMPOUND OF 4 HOMES - $850,000 TURNKEY
Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at gerrybuilt2000@yahoo.com.  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:
7967-7/17/13

La Cruz finca
La Cruz Finca 223 ha. (558.2 acre)
This beautiful 223-hectare (558-acre) farm is 70 kms. north of Liberia on the Pan-American Highway and has over a kilometer of frontage on the highway. The property is almost 3 kms deep and has good interior roads. The River Sapoa runs year round at the back side of the farm which is almost 1 mile wide with and incredible views over the Nicaraguan border to Lake Nicaragua and Isla Ometepe. Great property for an eco retreat, teak farm or cattle ranch.  At $900 per acre, this is one of the best farm deals around. See details HERE! The seller will entertain any reasonable offer. Price: $495,000 contact: Bruce Hummel. Email: Bruce@bh-cr.com. Cell Phone: 011 (506) 8819-2119, From US/Canada: (816) 987 7166,  www.bh-cr.com
7966-6/16/13

Playa Octal home
Playa Ocotal Beach Home
This home is located in a residential resort complex made up of 40 luxurious, fully furnished beachfront villas, plus a clubhouse complete with poolside bar and restaurant. Bahía Pez Vela is located in Guanacaste, Costa Rica, one kilometer from Playa Ocotal on the North Pacific coast and just 30 minutes drive from Liberia International Airport and three miles to downtown Playas Del Coco. From this home you can hear and see the waves crashing on the rocks of this pristine beach. See it HERE! This is the best priced beach home in Costa Rica! Price $225,000   Contact: Bruce Hummel Bruce@bh-cr.com, www.bh-cr.com - Cell Phone: 011 (506) 8819-2119, From US/Canada: (816) 987-7166.
7965-6/16/13

hree peanel montage
This dream Costa Rica beach house overlooking Carara National Park and the Pacific has been rented continuously for two years. D.C. owners are on site at the house in May and prepping for June 1 Move in and/or vacation rentals and have an unbelievable offer. Already listed way under value, $150,000 Cash or $199,500 with owner financing through May 30th. Note: This was the owner's (14 year residents of Costa Rica) dream home before their relocation to Washington, D.C., Your own salt water Infinity pool, expansive sala and balcony, views from every room. Each room is individually air-conditioned, ceramic tiles, cathedral ceiling; three bedrooms in an international community. Scarlet macaws fly by your veranda each evening.
zen/natural contemporary design ideal for your location overlooking Costa Rica's biological corridor. 50 minutes from San José, minutes from beaches/20 minutes from Jacó Beach. Tour this property online first at www.dreamincostarica.com and if interested contact Barry in Costa Rica through May 30th for a tour. In Costa Rica: 8701-5639 or call Rosemary in the U.S. 239-910-3354. Note: On June 1 the price of this property will increase to over $200,000 after equipping, painting and acceptance of rental income. Don't wait!
7958-6/2/13

La Garita
                                  home
This home was built by a California contractor with all the amenities expected in a 3,000-square foot home.  There is a little less than one acre of land.  There is an 800-square foot shop easily converted to a rental unit or studio.  Located in La Garita de Atenas, 15 minutes to the international airport and 30 minutes to San José.  $225,000. 2487-4500.
xxxx-xxxxx

montage ofr photos
ALAZAN Eco-Friendly Community

- Ocean, mountain, and river views, built in harmony with nature
- 70% sold out, 1.25 acre + lots available from $75,000
- All lots held in separate corporations
- Functioning HOA with 24-hour security and gated front entrance
- 100% custom homes, turnkey construction
- Community homes have been featured in Su Casa Architectural Magazine
- Abundant wildlife on the property, access to 45-acre nature preserve
- Organic Permaculture farm coming soon
- Build your custom dream home and join our community of friends in paradise!
Brokers Welcome
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/1011.html
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 (506) 8718-9891
7725-5/15/13

Arenal Colonial
Property for sale, great potential income
Turnkey business $350K. Rental $1,250/month This luxury home (4,000 square feet and two story private home) is a botanical paradise overlooking beautiful Lake Arenal. Only one block from the lake park and boat ramp. Close to Tabacón hot springs and Monteverde cloud forest. Caño Negro national park and many beautiful beaches along the Pacific are only a short drive away. Costa Rica bird watching, wind surfing, fishing, water sports, ecotourism adventures, hiking, tennis and mountain biking are out your front door. Also has a wonderful view of the Arenal Volcano, a safe 25 miles away. Electric gated entrance. Safe private home and entire property. To see more pictures and info, click here: http://www.intertica.com/homes/roy.htm
http://share.shutterfly.com/action/welcome?sid=wKaNmrNyyZtXGg
7933-7/22/13

Jacó compound
Located in Jacó at Barrio Ricos y Famosos in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.
Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 bath 270 square meters, 2 condominiums 2 bedrooms, one bath, 110 square meters, plus one small apartment. one bedroom, one bath. Huge pool, carport for five cars. plus double garage, rancho with pool bathroom,  gymnasium, laundry room, pool plumbing room, huge dog house in separate 500 square-meter garden with aviary for Guacamayas (we have three birds) 60 meters of river front of Río Copey with a 4 meter-high protective and retention stone wall. Eight surveillance camera CCTV system with Internet access from anywhere. Over 2 meter-high brick wall all around the property with two layers of razor wires on top, the safest place to be! Electronic entrance gate, door phone, five telephone lines, high-speed Internet wireless access everywhere. Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Price $ 1,350.000 negotiable. All fittings and furniture, included even a car. Owner financing available. German-built, excellent quality and well maintained. More photos on request. http://www.intertica.com/ocean/wolfgang.htm
7929-7/18/13

Monte Mar
Hacienda Monte Mar
Gated Community near the beach
SALE on our last 4 lots! Starting at just $17,500 with financing available.
Reserve today with just $5,000 down
Great Retirement Home, Vacation Home, or investment option!
Lots of wildlife on the property. Gated front entrance, caretakers on site,
security and lawn maintenance.
Water and power on site.
http://www.haciendamontemar.com/
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891
7928-8/9/13

Nicoya views
Property with ocean and gulf view for sale
Tranquil million dollar view, 5,000-sq.meter property with 3/2 home built to American standards, artistically designed and decorated, 16-foot ceilings of mango and tamarindo, appliances, plunge pool, rancho, caretaker apartment, workshop, covered parking, views of Gulf of Nicoya and ocean, in countryside near San José to Caldera highway. Near the lovely town of Esparza. Can provide extra income from bed and breakfast room rental and stellar Tripadvisor reviews. www.oasisbytheseabandb.com $180,000 506-8869-9274.
7882-4/15/13

FOR SALE BY OWNER
You can purchase property in Costa Rica legally without paying Land Transfer Tax; this plus the usual real estate commission of 5% will reduce your purchase price by approximately 11%. Save over $50,000.00 on the purchase of this $465,000.00 property. Large 5000+ sq.ft. House. Ideal for business executive, B & B or large family. E-mail for photos and more information to landofpalms@hotmail.com.
7869-4/6/13

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary. jungalow@gmail.com.
7845-8/18/13

just reduced
Just Reduced to $169,000!!!
58-acre oceanview and mountainview property

Segregated into 9 lots, Excellent Development Potential!
20 minutes from the beach Central Pacific Coast, between Jacó and Quepos.
http://www.richcoastrealty.com/1060.html
Brendan@RichCoastRealty.com
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005  CR Cell 8718-9891
7766-6/17/13

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)7115-12/16/11


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
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Solar plane makes landing
in D.C. as trip nears end


By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A solar-powered plane nearing the end of a cross-continental journey landed early Sunday at Dulles International Airport outside Washington.

The aircraft, the Solar Impulse, began its journey May 3 in San Francisco and has made stops in Arizona, Texas, Missouri and Ohio, staying several days in cities along the way.

The Solar Impulse is powered by about 12,000 photovoltaic cells that cover its enormous 63-meter wings and charge its batteries during the day so it can fly at night. The single-seat plane is capable of flying about 65 kilometers per hour, but can not go through clouds or rain.

The sun-powered plane is expected to fly the last leg from Washington to New York City's John F. Kennedy International Airport in early July.

Swiss pilots Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg have taken turns flying the plane and say they plan a worldwide attempt in 2015.




'Happy Birthday' copyright
attacked in new court suit

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The song millions sing at birthday parties around the world is the subject of a new lawsuit in New York. A filmmaker wants a federal court to declare that  "Happy Birthday to You" is in the public domain and therefore not subject to the U.S. copyright law.

Owners of the copyright are being sued by filmmaker Jennifer Nelson, who wants to use the song in a new documentary with the working title of "Happy Birthday."  She says she was asked to pay $1,500 dollars to a publishing firm, Warner/Chapell, which is associated with the Warner Music Group.

The familiar melody was composed more than 100 years ago by sisters Patty and Mildred Hill with the title, "Good Morning to All."  Over the years it evolved into its current version, which is listed by the Guinness Book of Records as the most recognized song in the English language and has been translated into numerous languages.

The suit claims that the song "Happy Birthday to You" is a public adaptation of the original and, therefore, it belongs to the public."

The lawyer for Ms. Nelson says the suit also asks  Warner/Chapell to return all the fees for the song collected in the past four years, estimated to be about $2 million per year.

A spokesman for Warner/Chapell declined to comment.
 


Flurry of quakes on Pacific

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A 6.5 magnitude quake hit Saturday at 11:34 a.m. in the Pacific off the coast  of Nicaragua. Either coincidentally or because of the strong quake, a lesser one took place a few seconds later a kilometer north of Sardinal de Carrillo in Guanacaste. That one had a magnitude of 4.9, said the Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Costa Rica.

Then Saturday at 5:02 p.m. there was a 4.0 magnitude quake off the northern Pacific coast of Gauancaste.

All the quakes appear to have been the result of the subduction of the Cocos tectonic plate under the lighter Caribbean one.


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From Page 7


Food additive cuts hog packer's profits

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Hog producer Smithfield Foods Inc., the subject of a $4.7 billion bid from China's Shuanghui International, posted a 63 percent fall in net profit as exports to China and Russia declined due to issues related to a drug it uses to produce lean meat.
 
Smithfield, whose products include Smithfield bacon and Eckrich sausages, said its net income fell to $29.7 million, or 21 cents per share, in the fourth quarter ended April 28, from $79.5 million, or 49 cents per share, a year earlier.
 
Revenue rose 3 percent to $3.32 billion.
 
“For the industry, pork exports were down to nearly every major market in the fourth quarter with volumes to China and Russia falling over ractopamine certification requirements,” Chief Executive Larry Pope said in a statement Friday.
 
Ractopamine, a livestock food additive, has been banned in China and Russia. Smithfield said on May 14 it would soon raise half of its hogs on feed that does not contain ractopamine.
 
The company also said a weaker yen resulted in lower shipments to Japan.
 
Smithfield did not provide an update on the takeover, which analysts and politicians have said could face land ownership issues in several states as well as scrutiny from a federal government panel that assesses national security risks.
 
The panel is not expected to block the sale, which if completed would result in a huge increase in Smithfield's exports to China.
 
Smithfield said earlier this month that it would discontinue earnings conference calls because of the pending deal.
 
Smithfield shares were little changed in light pre-market trading. They closed at $32.81 on Thursday on the New York Stock Exchange, below Shuanghui's offer price of $34 per share.