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September 25, 2017, Vol. 17, No. 190
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The Sutel decision opens up the market but does that necessarily mean more competition or more monopoly?
Sutel officially opens the mobile service market
By Rommel Téllez
of the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Consejo de la Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones announced Friday that the mobile services market will be officially open to competition.

That means the Supertintendencia will start focusing more with the technical issues of mobile services while telecom provider have more room to offer new plans and services.

This process started back in Aug. 16, when the Superintendencia called for a public consultation about the opening in the market for the purpose of making it easier for mobile operators to sell new plans, packages, bonuses, promotions or discounts.



"There will be multiple and better commercial offers and those will be monitored by the regulatory agency in matters of rights and quality of service for users," Sutel said in a statement.

 
According to the Superintendencia, there will be greater dynamism in the market and users will have greater availability of commercial offers, better prices, more promotions and better quality and experience in the service.



"As a result of the technical analysis of the mobile telecommunications market, it was determined that there are several mobile telecommunications operators that offer their services in a competitive way," the statement said.



Sutel also reported that the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad will be free of the measures imposed on it in 2009 as the dominant operator.



"The Supertintendencia will continue its role as competition authority to avoid anticompetitive practices and guarantee Costa Rican users the best quality of service," the statement said.

The institution also said that the prices of calls and data have dropped. For example, in 2016, the price of prepaid calls was 60 percent less than the current price cap, while the price of mobile data was 45 percent lower than the maximum price established by law, according to the entity.



In addition, the institution says that there is a decrease of 19 percent in the average price paid by internet users between the years 2014 and 2016. In addition, the effective price of calls decreased by 17 percent between the years 2010 and 2016.

This news, usually revealed at the end of every Friday, may cause stir among users associations and the Defensoría de los Habitantes. The latter is the ombudsman of the country and has open criticized the lessening of control. 

The ombudsman fears only three providers could soon find a way to increase market prices, affecting the access to the internet as a human right.

Also, the Sala Constitutucional of the Corte Suprema ruled against internet usage caps authorized by Sutel in 2014.

The courts said that fair use policies cannot be implemented using only the figures of the private companies.

The chamber also said that if a new Fair Policy Use is not implemented in the next three weeks, it should be eliminated altogether.


Judicial authorities arrest escaped convict in Jacó
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Judicial agents attached to Costa Rica’s organized crime section arrested an escaped convict at Jacó Friday morning.

According to a report from the Judicial Investigation Organization, the Dominican national escaped from the La Joyita prison in Panamá back in December. Authorities said he was being held on allegations of murdering five people of Asian descent in the country. Agents arrested the man in collaboration with the Dirección de Inteligencia y Seguridad.

The murders occurred back in 2010 and 2011 when assailants kidnapped the victims at various times. Investigators believe the Dominican had another partner in these crimes. The victims were kidnapped and the families blackmailed to pay a reward in exchange for the release of their loved ones.

The kidnappers never released these victims, however, and instead recorded an audiotape of the victim to request the ransom and the killed them, the judicial report said.

The killings were done in a place called the Trapichito de La Chorrera. Costa Rican authorities said that the man arrested escaped from his call in La Joyita and arrived in the country to reside in Jacó.

Arrested Convict
Judicial Investigation Organization photo      
Agents arresting the escaped convict.

Authorities explained that, when arrested, he carried false documentation and it is likely how he was able to cross into Costa Rican territory.

The suspect also used a false identity while in Panamá, agents said. He will be deported back to Panamá and was sent to immigration authorities for processing.



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A.M.
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Second News Page

Published || Monday Edition, September 25, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 190
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Agents arrest two police officers in relation to robbery in Quepos
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Agents of the Judicial Investigation Organization arrested three men in Quepos on charges related to the robbery and threatening of two foreign tourists and one Costa Rican. Two of the arrested are apparently police officers.

According to the preliminary report, the men were arrested early Saturday morning. The victims were leaving a bar and backing their car out when the 32-year old suspect apparently went directly behind the vehicle intentionally while on a bicycle. The suspect threatened them and drew a knife while insisting that they had to pay for the broken bike.

The victims saw a police patrol and called them to the scene to help. Instead, the two officers on patrol decided to defend the suspect. The victims then left the scene and were stopped by the officers in a police vehicle and the other man in a separate car.

Investigators believe that, when stopped, the officers allowed this man to steal all the belongings in the car and took another to an ATM where he threatened one of the victims with a knife and ordered him to take out 50,000 colones to the suspect.

The police patrolmen are suspected of having knowingly cooperated in this incident.

So far, officials from the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública or Fuerza Pública have issued a statement in relation to this incident.

Judicial agents received the complaint from the victims and arrested the original suspect at his room in Quepos while the police officers were arrested separately in Quepos and Jacó. The detainees were passed to the public prosecutor’s office to determine charges.


Millions of dollars in drugs being smuggled in prisons, report says
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The consumption of cocaine within the hidden market of the Costa Rican prison system accounts for commercial transactions reaching almost $1 million a year, according to the latest report issued by the Instituto Costarricense sobre Droga.

The document shows that, as of 2016, prison police authorities seized more than 99,000 doses among the jailed population. Each dose is sold in $8.


The seizures have included the confiscation of 130 kilograms of marijuana and 38,000 crack doses, known locally as piedras. That figure accounts for the amount of drugs seized in 275 monthly checks.

“Older prisoners rely on the ingenuity of outsiders such as family, friends or just random people recruited to introduce the drugs,” said Guillermo Araya, the institute’s director.

"This is a closed population and the study shows us the business generates lots of revenue to criminal gangs. They need people with a strong dependence on the abuse of substances to secure the demand.”

During 2016, more than 2,000 people were involved in drug confiscation, out of which 1,600 are prisoners. 

Araya recommends strengthening the controls and takes pride in the amount of drugs that are off the streets right now.

Still, the data compiled represents only the basic confiscations and seizures from cells and on prison grounds. It is harder to estimate how many drugs have slipped through the system’s cracks but it is likely to be an amount higher than the institute’s data.


“It's a million dollars that did not go to organized crime to recruit young people, to diversify into other crimes or buy more drugs,” he added.

The study of the institute shows that 87 percent of prisoners already had addiction problems before entering jail and only 7 percent of the population began consumption at the centers. Experts mentioned in the study consider that overcrowded conditions and peer pressure encourage the use of drugs.


Cecilia Sánchez, the head of the Ministerio de Justicia y Paz, said she is concerned about that amount of drugs circulating into the penal system and said the problem should be addressed in a comprehensive manner.



Captured
                              marijuana
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo      
Archived photo of one of many police confiscations
of marijuana.


Drug
                                confiscation
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo      
Cocaine is smuggled into Costa Rica and then also into the prison system as well.

"It's complicated,” said Ms. Sánchez. “It's not just about banning consumption but also providing work options and education and other tools to keep their minds occupied.”



Ms. Sánchez explained the justice system provides programs against addictions but as of now, they are not mandatory.


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A.M.
Costa Rica

Third News Page
Residency

Published || Monday Edition, September 25, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 190
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Costa Rica will partner with Rutgers students in Cordillera study
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

An agreement between the Universidad de Costa Rica and Rutgers University will allow 18 students from the United States along with Costa Rican researchers to study the region around the Cordillera Mountains in Talamanca.

The research will be done in cooperation with the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, the Laboratorio Nacional de Materiales y Modelos Estructurales and the geology school at UCR. The project will investigate and determine the origins, the present state and potential threats that can occur within the mountain range, according to a statement from the university. This will be totally funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation.

ICE and the geology school will handle the internal structure of the mountains as well as the current geological behavior in the region. Lanamme will preside over the studying of threats to the road network, the university said.

The Cordillera mountain range is considered geologically important due to its high elevations and being an area where earthquakes frequently occur at high magnitudes. The project wants to find out the internal structure of this area and also examine potential high susceptibility to landslides that could affect the national road system.

“We hope that both the Rutgers students and project leaders will benefit each other and serve to enrich the education and work done in Costa Rica,” said Dr. Vadim Levin, the coordinator for the project at Rutgers.

Levin selects a total of 18 students that will work alongside mentors assigned in Costa Rica from Lanamme, ICE and the university. In addition to the project’s goals, Levin said that this will also help show the students the possibilities that come when working in research at an international level. The Talamanca study will use broadband seismic stations, high resolution GPS devices, LiDar tools and drones, the university said. The study will be carried out over a period of six weeks with the seismic stations to be installed coming from Rutgers.

The first group of students will arrive in Costa Rica next July and then will present in September before returning for a second tour in January 2019 to help the transition for the next group.

Cordillera Maps
Universidad de Costa Rica maps
Maps display location of Cordillera mountain range relative to tectonic plates and geological ridge-lines.
Cordillera mountains
Universidad de Costa Rica photo
The Cordillera mountains are in some of the rougher terrain of Costa Rica.

By the end of three phases, all the results will be compiled into a single study. Costa Rican students in geology or civil engineering will also have the opportunity to go to Rutgers to obtain a master’s degree and collaborate with the same project.


Libertarian legislators shoot down new beer tax bill as absurd
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Movimiento Libertario are fighting against a new bill that proposes a new 10 colones tax on beers, and thus, strengthen the pension system of the Caja Costarricense del Seguro Social.



The bill was presented by the legislator of the Partido Accesibilidad sin Exclusión, Óscar López. According to the lawmaker, the measure would raise at least $12 million yearly.



However, the Movimiento Libertario considers the idea to be absurd and it has announced its total opposition to this and any other type of taxes.

Natalia Díaz, head of the legislature’s faction of the libertarian movement said that she had already told López her position against the idea.



However, Lopéz explained that, according to studies, almost eight out of ten consumers of alcoholic beverages prefer beer, regardless of their social status.

In addition, he said that he has conducted surveys in different sectors, and all opinions have been positive. According to him, beer consumption in the country reached 169 million liters in 2015.

beer bottles
A.M. Costa Rica photo/ Conor Golden   
There's a new tax on beer being considered.


Recommended
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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page

  Published || Monday Edition, September 25, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 190
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Private sector challenges language in government's food security bill
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The country’s private sector, represented by the Unión de Cámaras y Asociaciones del Sector Empresarial Privado, has expressed high concerns about what they consider an upcoming interventionist role of the government in terms of national food and nutrition policies. 



The sector is worried about the potential approval of bill 20.076 which seeks to create 82 cantonal committees that would make decisions about the consumption of locally produced food.

"

Both the bill and another draft in discussion give an interventionist role to the State, the municipalities and groups of people who do not have the technical and scientific knowledge to evaluate the quality of food which must be consumed in the country,” said Franco Pachecho, president of the Cámara. “This clearly conflicts with individual liberties”


According to the business lobby, the text on food security should be dismissed and archived, given the dangers it could generate for the productive sector.

In addition, they consider that the bill also contains several rules that could weaken the role of the  institutions responsible for sanitary and phytosanitary regulations in the agricultural sector.

As an example, the group mentions Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería, the Servicio Fitosanitario del Estado and Servicio Nacional de Salud Animal. 


One of the main worries of this initiative is the creation of a Citizen Committee to Control Food and Nutrition Security.
Mercado Central
Wikipedia photo    
Food security is drawing a debate on the scope and scale of the government's role for goods such as those in San José's Mercado Central.

The committee would work without technical or scientific experience, and the representation of the private businesses would be in clear numerical disadvantage, according to the Cámara. 

"At a time when we all talk about a fiscal crisis, the project in question lacks budgetary content, which is undoubtedly another negative point,” added Pachecho. “These are part of the reasons why we believe the text should be archived.”



On Tuesday, representatives of the Cámara Costarricnese de la Industria Alimentaria also complained against the initiative before the legislators of the Commission of Agricultural Affairs of the Legislative Assembly.


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Fine
                  Furniture of Sarchi

Fine Furniture of Sarchi - Sarchi, Costa Rica
All our handcrafted products are made in Sarchi with pride and quality by artisans who are dedicated to designing, crafting, and delivering our furniture to you. Please visit our website and send us a picture and specifications of what YOU like, or just send us pictures from anywhere you wish. We will quote you right back with a more than competitive price and an on-time delivery date. Delivery and set up available throughout Costa Rica. We have different Costa Rican woods from which you may choose. 
www.FineFurnitureOfSarchi.com
Contact information:
Adolfo's Cell 506-8831-4306
 Tom in the USA 803-261-6000
Email: Info@FineFurnitureOfSarchi.com
9218-8/25/17

U.S. Income Tax Services (paid category)

Tax time
U.S. Income Tax Services
Marlene B. Summers
T
ax Accountant
Let’s discuss your tax situation.

Marlene
                                  Summers
The IRS has become more aggressive and if you have not filed, you must do so. 

However, there are solutions to problems and your situation may be better than you think.

If your filing is not up to date, Streamlined Filing can be used with no penalties.

Including disclosure of foreign corporations to avoid serious problems.

If tax payment is holding you back, the IRS has options to solve payment problems.

You can file current or past due FBARs without payment to meet IRS  requirements.

If you have yet to file, do it now as there is still time.

Over 20 years in Costa Rica
and Silicon Valley.
Competitive rates.

Phone (506) 2289-6590 ; Cell (506) 8750-2316
Email: marlene.summers@gmail.com
9186-6/30/17

James Brohl
James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  U.S. GAAP Accounting
& Business Consulting
n
Specializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad including:
n
• IRS filing requirements of foreign income tax exclusion (up to $102,100 for 2017).
• Past-due tax returns: Taxpayers filing before an IRS notice do not face criminal sanctions.
• Reporting foreign financial assets: FBAR and foreign corporations.
• Up-to-date FATCA news.
• All US Tax return preparation:
individual, business, estate and trust.
• eFile returns: secure with faster refunds.
• Business consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica.
Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620
E-mail jrtb_1999@yahoo.com

A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Business
wanted
Real estate wanted

Real estate rentals (paid category)

Tropical Homes
                                                logo
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 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
9055-2/23/17


Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on SellMyTimeshareNow.com at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
Timeshare
1- to 3-bedroom ocean and garden view timeshares available and most offer air conditioning, cable TV, fully equipped kitchens, and relaxing hammocks on private balconies. Enjoy the unique combination of seclusion and convenience as all resorts listed on our site are close to popular Costa Rican attractions and downtown 
centers, but are surrounded in lush, tropical forest. Villas are also available for sale in our inventory, so you can enjoy yearly vacations to this mesmerizing rainforest paradise. Please visit our rental inventory HERE!  or call us toll free at 877-815-4227, International: 603-516-0200.  Email: info@sellmytimesharenow.com
9049-7/31/17


Real estate-related services (paid category)

COSTA RICA SOLAR
solar one

solar two
NOW with the New Power Company Regulations, we're installing photo voltaic systems for solar electricity.
PV systems: we use Enphase micro-inverters. More flexible. Add panels whenever you like. More reliable than any other system and fully guaranteed!

Solar device
NOW is the time to install our new super-efficient solar hot water! New model for condos
Solar collector
BUY NOW! Your solar hot water system, so in three months, we can calculate a lower install price for your PV system.  Perfect for homes and hotels. Save up to 40% of your electric bill.
More Watts per Panel, Smarter and more Capable Enphase Micro Inverters mean Less Cost and more Flexibility for You.

    We aren't Cheap...Neither are our Products. Call to Compare.
    More Flexible, Reliable-and Fully Guaranteed!

    Push this BIG RED BUTTON:  (O) and Learn ​details about your deal with ICE     
    SEE our new PACKAGE DEALS.
Solar logo
CALL TODAY!
Office: 506-2446-0543
Andre 506-8314-8090
Paul 506-8898-9398
OUR EMAIL:
 andrefurlong@gmail.com
Paul.Furlong@CR-Solar.com
VISIT OUR WEB:
www.crsolar.net 
CODE 9230-12/19/17


Shipping services (paid category)

Shipping
Moving to Costa Rica or Back to the U.S.?
  10 Years of Happy Clients
Canadian English or Spanish Spoken
Excellent Service, Competitive Prices
Call  (772) 361-1050
Email:   shippingcostarica@gmail.com
Our Web:  http://shippingcostarica.com
Free Ebook: How To Import to Costa Rica HERE!
Shipping Costa Rica


Psychotherapy


Dr. Gray
Dr. Lucinda Gray
California Licensed
Psychologist
International Practice

• Anxiety
 • Depression
 • Relationship Problems
 • Trauma EMDR click here
 • NWM Training
 
CR (506) 2228-2041
US (310) 827-4241
doclucinda@gmail.com
www.LucindaGray.com
Learn more about 
New World Meditation: (Second Edition) Discover True Happiness Thru
Experiential Healing 
Click Here
9057-2/25/17


Psychiatric Services
SERVICE CONNECTED DISABLED AMERICAN VETERANS (FMP)
Dr. Luis Carlos Sancho
DR LUIS CARLOS SANCHO TORRES
PTSD, Depression, Anxiety, Prescription Management

Send us your:
-VA LETTER WITH LIST OF DISABILITIES
-VETERAN IDENTIFICATION

Call me:  (506) 2246-3458
Email: veteranscr@gmail.com
4th floor at Hospital La Catolica, Guadalupe, San José
9234-12/1/17


Legal Services

Adrian Fernandez
Attorney & Notary

A Fernandez
Notary services and registrations. Collections and foreclosures. Real estate and litigation. Corporate Law. Immigration. Estate planning wills and testaments, probate.

I provide the highest professional standards. Official documentation and Notary deeds are always translated in English for better comprehension, client satisfaction and safety.

 Call me for advice
    Phone:  2280-9692 / 2253-3705
    Email: ajfernandez@racsa.co.cr
    Law Office is conveniently located near  Mall San Pedro, 350 meters south  from the Hyundai dealer, Los Yoses, San José.
9181-7/3/17

Insurance professionals

The Garrett Insurance Group
Garrett
-Brokerage fully licensed by the
      government.
-Experience since 1980.
-Bilingual English/Spanish.
-Represent all the best insurance
       companies in Costa Rica,
       BMI, Blue Cross, Blue
       Shield, ASSA, INS, etc.
-Correspondents of WILLIS.
-Connections in all of Central
       America.
-Superb communications.
-Prize-winning Web site.
-English policy extracts.
-Helps you settle your claims.
Centro Comercial El Pueblo, Local #125, San José. Phone:  ( 506 ) 2233-9520  or ( 506) 2233-2455
E-mail : info@garrettbrokers.com
More information HERE!
9165-5/22/17




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A.M.
Costa
Rica
Fifth
news page


Published || Monday Edition, September 25, 2017 || Vol. 17, No. 190
Calendar
Opinion
Classifieds
Real estate
Lifestyle
Food
About us

Books headline

Brodell Book
Costa Rica: Remarkable Tales from Our Super Vacation Spot

By the staff and contributors at A.M. Costa Rica
 (editor)A.M. Costa Rica celebrates its 16th anniversary with a compilation of classic news reports geared to the needs of foreigners living here and those elsewhere with personal or business interests in this vacation paradise. Each seeks to tell something new or original about the vacation and retirement mecca.  
Read a sample and purchase the book HERE!

Trouble with Cash

The Trouble with Cash
By John H Paterson

Greg and Liz must sell their property in Costa Rica to finance their retirement. They receive an offer for their full asking price of $1 million, but it comes with one condition...the payment is to be in cash. They go for it. Things go wrong. The money is stolen.The local police are no help so Greg devises his own plan to get their money back.  Review or buy the book on Amazon ON SALE FOR $0.99
 Click Here  Email:  j.paterson@riomagnolia.com 
Phone: (506) 8868-5561
 Watch book trailer here:

Money, Flowers and More

MAKE GIFTS FROM DOLLARS OR COLONES
Running out of gift ideas? Author Dusty Pilot has just released easy to follow, step-by-step instructions for turning bills (dollars or colones) of any denomination into unique gifts such as flowers: roses, daffodils, daisies and poinsettias; shirts and blouses, and birds with flapping wings. The book is being discounted to $0.99 through October 31. It is available at all major online book stores. Preview or purchase at Amazon or visit  DustyPilot click here. Buy this book at Smashwords For more information Contact Dusty Pilot: Email dusty@dustypilot.com. Phone  001 440 796-4105

Brodell book 2
The Dark Side of Pura Vida: Murder, Betrayal, Abduction and Revenge in the Vacation Paradise

By James J. Brodell. Retired baseball player Jack Patterson becomes suspicious after his younger sister dies in a Pacific Ocean rip tide while on vacation in Costa Rica. Jack has to go there to find answers to troubling questions. But soon he is hijacked by a gang of avengers led by an icy Costa Rican-American woman who carries twin pistols strapped to her chest. Jack soon helps uncover a web of corruption and greed . Read a sample and purchase the book HERE!

Trapped in Damas Cave
Trapped In The Damas Cave, Costa Rica

A true story by author Dusty Pilot, who lived in Costa Rica for 11 years. Dusty tells his horrifying story of being trapped in the Damas Cave, near Quepos, for 26 hours. The book is available from Amazon in both digital and print format. Digital format will be on sale for $0.99 until Aug. 30. Visit Amazon.com to preview or purchase, or DustyPilot.com/cave.html More information Contact Dusty Pilot Email: dusty@dustypilot.com US phone: 001 440 796-4105¯

New
                        World Meditation
New World Meditation: Focusing-Mindfulness-Healing-Awakening
By Lucinda Gray PhD

You will be Free to Live, Love, Work and Play in the Full Creative Expression of Your Authentic Self. New World Meditation is easy to learn, easy to practice, and profoundly transformational.  More information HERE!
Life
                        is a Tropical Garden

    Life is a Tropical Garden By Victoria Torley 
    A quirky look at gardening in the tropics. What happens when a "Northern" gardener moves to Costa Rica? You have no idea….  Email: victoriatorley1@gmail.com.  Order this book here:  https://www.amazon.com/dp/1522005986/ref=rdr_ext_tmb


HowardBook

Guide to Costa Rican Spanish
(English and Spanish Edition)

This one-of-a-kind best-selling Costa Rica Spanish phrasebook will help anyone including older retirees master the basics of using Costa Rican Spanish in real-life situations. Retirees, expats and tourists will get the most of of Costa Rica, be able to communicate effectively with Costa Ricans and understand the local culture. A practical pronunciation will help you sound a like a native Spanish speaker.  The book is now available for sale on Amazon click here

CODE:8550-10/21/17
Making grape juice the old-fashioned way

Do you have time on your hands? Nothing to do? Too hot/cold/rainy to do it anyway?

There are things that our mothers or maybe our grandmothers did, before the era of processed foods, that are worth a try.


Victoria Torley
 For example, my mother made
 her own jams and jellies. Not
 easy but she got it done.

 I know many women who still
 make their own spaghetti sauce
 (they haven’t given me a good
 recipe) even if some start with
 canned tomatoes (oh the
 embarrassment!)

Still, sometimes I feel atavistic and decide to give something a try – not just breads and cakes. Those are always homemade, but something really atavistic. Enter our discovery of grape vines on the property. Vines just loaded down with what look like small purple pearls. Suddenly, I was back in my mother’s basement workroom with the old stove and the shelves of preserves. I was hooked.

Picking grapes is easy, for the most part. Pull the vine from the tree, watch out for bees and spiders, snip off the grapes and carry them home. Then the work starts.

First, you have to separate the “little pearls” from the stems and sort them. Green ones, old ones, damaged grapes go to the compost heap. The rest get mashed up somehow. The internet says to use a potato masher but I haven’t seen one of those in years. Then it is weighed (1 pound = 1 cup of juice), and popped into a pot where they simmer for about 10 minutes with occasional stirring and re-mashing.

Cheesecloth! Oh drats, just where am I supposed to buy cheesecloth? Our mothers and grandmothers always seemed to have cheesecloth but somehow I forgot to put that on the shopping list. Think, think…pantyhose! Strain your grape mash through pantyhose! Phew, that was a close one.

Now I remember my mother having a bag made of cheesecloth. She put the grape mash into it, hung the bag from a beam and had a way to twist it, squeezing out as much of the juice as she could get. I have no clue how to replicate that so maybe I will just twist the pantyhose a bit? That puts a new spin on “don’t get your panties in a twist,” doesn’t it? Twist, squeeze, twist some more and you get a lot of purple juice. Really, really tart purple juice.

My mother must have used different grapes, probably the big juicy Concord grapes that her aunt grew. Aunt Helen would always trade grapes for jams.

Anyway, it can be interesting to do something the way your relatives did it in the olden days and it makes you appreciate how easy and convenient things are today.

My experiment? Well the grapes were really sour. I am going to freeze the juice and use a little bit of it when I make smoothies. It should be just right.


Grape juice mash
A.M. Costa Rica photo/Victoria Torley       

Photo of the Week

Here is a picture of my mash straining through pantyhose. And the old mash is great for the compost pile.

If you would like to suggest a topic for this column, simply send a letter to the editor. And, for more garden tips, visit HERE!













































ANNOUNCEMENT FROM
THE A.M. COSTA RICA STAFF


You've probably noticed this blank space on the A.M. Costa Rica fifth news page.

We're in the midst of adding something new here! Keep an eye out for more details.









Costa Rican News
AMCostaRicaArchives.com
Retire NOW in Costa Rica
CostaRicaReport.com
Fine Dining in Costa Rica
The CAFTA Report
Fish fabulous Costa Rica




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Food
Lifestyle

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Calendar
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Lifestyle
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The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2017 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission.
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

From page 6:

Digital invoice switch starts with health sector

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

All services related to the health sector will be the first ones that will be made to issue electronic invoices for its clients, starting next Jan. 15.



The electronic invoice is a digital document that is created from the sale of a good or service and it records the data of the transaction, either in national or foreign currency and with the information in Spanish.

 According to the Dirección General de Tributación, in mid-January the use of electronic billing systems, electronic ticket, electronic credit notes and electronic debit notes shall begin as well.

The professionals required to use this mechanism will be: general physicians, nurses, gynecologists, ophthalmologists, orthopedists, odontologists, otorhinolaryngologists, audiologists, pharmacists, cardiologists, oncologists, physiotherapists, psychologists, psychiatrists, radiologists, anesthesiologists, paramedics and professionals in occupational health and special education.



Naturists, alternative doctors, homeopaths and other activities related to human health should also have an electronic bill. The same obligation is for hospitals, health services, ground and air ambulance services, veterinary and laboratories.



According to the planning of the Ministry of Finance, as of February 1, professionals in accounting, finance and administration, as well as auditors, economists, consultants, tax and customs consultants and consulting firms will be required to use this digital system.



Next March, the mandatory period for legal activities begins: lawyers, notaries, legal advisers and law firms. April 2 is the turn of computer scientists, software designers, web designers, computer repairers, architects, engineers and the similar. The last group, which begins on May 1, will include: meteorologists, mechanics, industrial and construction consultants, chemists, geologists, geographers, biologists, food technologists, publicists, librarians, educators and journalists.



These changes are the result of two resolutions issued at the end of 2016, by the Ministerio de Hacienda. The order or professional starting the system was chosen taking into account the amount of taxes of each profession. In December 2017, about 400 large taxpayers will debut the system to test their capabilities.

The invoice is generated at the time the service is terminated or the products are delivered.

 Finance ministry authorities have recommended taxpayers to update their physical address and e-mail through the document called Declaración de Datos de Contribuyentes D-140.


According to a research carried out by the Dirección General de Tributación, more than 50 percent of professionals file zero tax declarations. 

Hacienda considers these people to be tax risks and they are recognized because they fail to declare income, acquire property and real estate that reveal signs of wealth and include personal expenses statements or credits not related to the business.

The greatest risks were detected in professionals in the areas of: business consulting, medicine, architecture, engineering, law, accounting, information technology and veterinary.

 The sanction for not having declared the correct amount of taxes is equivalent to 150 percent of the unpaid amount according to the document Código de Normas y Procedimientos Tributarios.