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(506) 2223-1327                                Published Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 236                           Email us
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On trail of kidney ills, study illuminates a brutal job
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Sugar cane harvesters often reached recommended heat limits as early as 8 a.m. and risk adverse health effects throughout the rest of the daily shift, according to a three-year study.

A large percentage of harvesters experience symptoms consistent with heat exhaustion throughout the harvest season, and this demonstrates an urgent need to improve
working conditions for sugarcane harvesters both now and in planning for future climate change, the researcher said.

She is Jennifer Crowe, an Illinois native who works at Universidad Nacional in Heredia. The Atenas resident presented her study as a
Ms, Crowe
Jennifer Crowe
doctoral thesis at Umeå University in Sweden.

The plight of sugar cane workers in Central America became front page news after other studies showed a spike in potentially fatal and mysterious kidney diseases. Guanacaste is the major sugar producing location in Costa Rica, but the kidney problems range into and are more severe in other Central American countries.

Ms. Crowe did not say that overheating was the entire reason for the kidney epidemic, but her studies provide benchmarks for the challenging working conditions for sugar cane harvesters and those in the cane processing plants.

She and colleagues used instruments to measure temperature, wind and other conditions in which the workers toiled. Also measured was fluid intake and urine. In some cases, blood and other indications of internal stress were found in the urine. Metabolic heat levels in humans is a well-studied area, and Ms. Crowe and her colleagues had the advantage of plenty of existing data on how humans function.
Still, the thesis noted that cane cutters frequently work in temperatures that increase rapidly to 34 degrees C by midday. That's more than 93  F.

One worker told the researchers that cutting sugar cane is the worst possible job and that no one would do it if they could do something else. Most of the harvesters in Costa Rica are Nicaraguan migrant workers with low formal education.

Although there are mechanical harvesters, most of the human workers are in teams of two cutting the cane with machetes, the thesis said.

Another factor is that cane cutters are dressed heavily in the fields to avoid injury from the sun. That sometimes includes two pairs of long-sleeve shirts. That boosts body temperature.  They also live in substandard conditions, and some suspect the quality of the drinking water provided.

Other researchers have suggested that alcohol in the form of guaro cane liquor is a contributing factor to kidney ailments, but less than half of the study subjects reported they drank alcohol, the thesis said.

Ms. Crowe sought to do an experiment by providing some workers with rest periods and other ways to reduce the heated conditions, but she reported that a major sugar cane producer declined to go along with the proposal.

" . . . the company where the research was carried out decided not to implement the recommendations we made, and, instead, distributed one hydration drink per day to all harvesters," Ms. Crowe said. "As such, the planned evaluation (comparing outcomes of practice as usual and an intervention group) was not possible."

The harvest season in Central America begins in November and runs through April, the study noted. In Guanacaste that is the dry season with bright sun and cloudless skies.

The researcher put the value of the Central American sugar industry at $1.3 billion a year.

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A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.

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Solís submits bill on tourism sales tax

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Just as he said he would, President Luis Guillermo Solís has designated for action a bill that would relieve some tourist operators of five years of back sales taxes.

This is the tax that they did not know they owed until a decree was published amplifying the meaning of the sales tax law. That was in the last week of the Laura Chinchilla administration.

The measure is No. 19.408, and the effort to collect the taxes revolves around the phrase centros de recreo y similares. The administration is defining centers of recreation and similar as any operation that has an office. The tourism sector has been up in arms about this. The bill defers the sales tax until Jan. 1, 2016.

Monday begins what is known as the extraordinary session of the legislature. Years ago this established a loophole so that the president could recall vacationing lawmakers for a specific purpose in an emergency, such as declaring war.

Now this is a period when the executive branch controls the agenda. Lawmakers may only act on what the president puts before them.

Solís issued a decree listing many bills. They include budget bills, one that provides mutual protection for Costa Rican and Chinese investors, and one to regulate pawn shops.

Another would authorize an agreement for widening Ruta 32 for 100 kilometers from Limón west.

Another bill promotes the development of an electric train in the Central Valley.

There are bills to protect the disabled and one to transform the Dirección de Inteligencia y Seguridad Nacional to the Dirección de Intelligencia Estrategica Nacional. This is the private investigative unit of Casa Presidencial.

The in vitro fertilization bill is here. too. Another measure makes unspecified changes to a law that penalized violence against women.

There also are some anti-corruption measures.

Much of the wish list will not be passed in this legislative session, but the submissions show the mood of the executive branch. The text of some of the bills are not available yet, and others are versions of bills that already have been in the legislature.

Wider bridge at Río Virilla approved

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Contraloría de la República, the budget and contractual watchdog, has approved an agreement to widen the General Cañas highway from four to six lanes over the Río Virilla west of San José.

The agreement for the bridge job is 2.1 billion colons or about $4 million.

Work to reinforce the bridge and to improve it has been suspended pending approval of this agreement, the Ministerio de Obras Pública y Transportes said. The bridge has been declared ill designed, and there have been continual problems with the roadbed due to vibration.

The wider bridge is also part of a plan to put in a new highway to San Ramón, although this is not involved in this deal.

The highway itself is six lanes until it reaches the bridge on either side.

The minister said that 100,000 vehicles a day use the bridge.

Property theft case affects state power firm

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Judicial police detained an Aserrí man Thursday on the allegation that he faked paperwork with two notaries and then sold rights to a right-of-way he did not own to the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad.

The institute installed power lines through the property.

This took place in 2001, and the Judicial Investigating Organization said that the man received 42 million colons from the state power company known as ICE. That is about $77,500.

The owner of the property in Tarbaca was a woman who was out of the country at the time, judicial agents said. The property was in a corporation, and the man assumed the role of president with the help of the two notaries. Agents said they already had been detained.

Agents allege that he used the same techniques to sell two properties that he did not own in Sarapiquí.

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 236              
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Cartago will consider ban Saturday on genetically modified crops
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The political leaders of the Municipalidad of Cartago plan to meet in an unusual Saturday morning session to consider a ban on genetically modified organisms.

Social agitators who style themselves as environmentalists are promoting the ban and report that 74 local governments have enacted such a prohibition.

The ban actually is against First World companies that have produced genetically modified plants to combat insect or other pests as well as increase the beneficial contents of the foods or cause higher production.

The lengthy campaign began when Monsanto Co. received the right to plant several small test patches of modified corn.

Such crops have been grown in Costa Rica since the 1990s and include cotton. Corn is targeted especially because it pollinates through the air.

Opponents of the modified organisms include some who also protested against offshore drilling and an open pit gold mine in San Carlos.
Opponents have stopped short of seeking a ban on the importation of genetically modified products because nearly all the snack food produced in the United States use modified corn. Scientists generally conclude that there is little difference between modified and unmodified products.

In announcing the Cartago meeting at 8 a.m. Saturday, the opponents correctly noted that President Luis Guillermo Solís has designated a nationwide ban on genetically modified organisms as a bill he wants the legislature to consider. A version of the bill already is under study in a committee.

The opponents say they are trying to defend the traditional corn species of Costa Rica, but there has been no list provided of which species are of this type. There are more than 100 corn species that have been identified here, and some may even be genetically modified.

One of the leading opponents is Fabián Pacheco, who identifies himself as an agrobiologist. He is associated with the Federación Costarricense para la Conservación del Ambiente. That group also opposed the construction of private hydro generating projects and has come out against locating geothermal generating projects in national parks.

The organization plans a demonstration Saturday in Cartago.

Telephone call leads police to cocaine stash in downtown parking lot
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

There are strange developments that seem to be related to the war between rival drug factions

The latest is a microbus filled with cocaine that was turned into police by an anonymous caller.

The vehicle was found to contain a hefty 360 kilos of cocaine.

Drug couriers are not going to win any friends by abandoning a load like this, so one question is who put the vehicle in the parking lot near Parque Morazán.

The cocaine was so obvious that the first police officers on the scene could see the packages through a window. Fuerza Pública officers quickly contacted agents with the Policía de Control de Drogas.

The one-kilo drug packages were marked with a Batman logo.

A lot of the drug discoveries that officers attributed to investigative work or anti-drug dogs really are products of gang rivalry. One gang tries to win an advantage by telling police about drug shipments by its rivals.

Another strange event took place in Naranjo Monday when officers on patrol encountered two fake police officers who were holding
drug case
Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Seguridad Pública photo
Batman logo can be seen clearly on the drug packages.

drivers of Honduran-registered tractor trailers. Drug agents eventually found 573 kilos of cocaine in one truck.

The attempted hijacking clearly was directed at Honduran registered vehicles, so those who set up the fake stop must have had inside information. Investigators have said little about this case.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 236
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Police will shut off Calle 4 again
for annual children's museum show

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

More than 200 law enforcement officers from different agencies will set up a secure route Wednesday so families can attend the illumination of the facade of the Museo de los Niños.

All of Calle 4 from Avenida Segunda to the museum will be under tight police protection. This is an annual event to encourage families to attend.

The security goes into effect at 2 p.m.  The firefighters and the Cruz Roja also are involved.

Some 12,000 spectators are anticipated.

There is more than just the lighting of the former national prison that now is a children's museum.  There will be live acts culminating in fireworks. The show begins at dusk about 6:30 p.m.

The Cruz Roja said it is sending 60 of its staff and 12 ambulances.

The area along Calle 4 and Avenida 9 is considered by police to be a high crime area. It is inhabited by many immigrants, including Haitians and Dominicans.

uellow brick road
Museo de los Niños graphic
Graphic shows the protected area.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

La Fortuna
Comfort of your home in the campo, 5 minutes from Fortuna Centro of San Carlos, in the shadow of Volcano Arenal, Flat screen TV, AC, refrigerator, free coffee. Local area activities like four-wheeling, horse riding, zip lining, hot springs, jungle walking tours. Bring your camera for great photos of nature, fishing and swimming, canyoning and wireless internet. Harry Hart, proprietor.  Call for reservations  (506) 2479-8670   and (506) 8682-9219  Email:

Will Costa Rica Retirement Work For You?
Find out for yourself on Live In Costa Rica Tours

When you visit Costa Rica, you'll want to discover what you need to know to  make the right choice about moving to this tropical paradise.  Our familiarization tours have won hard-earned credentials that prove general excellence and the right focus.  These are the only retirement tours that are licensed and approved by the Costa Rican government and tourism institute  (ICT). In 2006 we were featured on the NBC Today Show and World News.  In 2010, we won the  prestigious Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the Best and Most Unique Tour in Latin America.

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
   * Find out how to live affordably
   * See how other expats live. Meet other expats who have made
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          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
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Anywhere Costa Rica plans custom vacations, and has the most comprehensive travel services in the country including travel guides, resorts and vacation homesCosta Rica tours
and car rentals.  
Call 1-888.456.3212 or 2479-8811 locally.

Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
or contact us by email:   
Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.

Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

 (as reported by the moving companies)
Visit many rental options to actually experience the price/amenity options available in more of the areas chosen by Expats for security, comfort, and quality of life.

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!

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

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

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
George Lundquist, retirement, relocation columnist, Guide & Developer/Builder.


Here's reasonable medical care
Costa Rica's world class medical specialists are at your command. Get the top care for much less than U.S. prices. It is really a great way to spend a vacation. See our list of recommended professionals HERE!amcr-prom

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Enjoy living in the middle of wonderful mountains.
Fresh air, gorgeous forest. Near downtown but away from noisy city.  Nature lifestyle.  Beautiful chalet in a large property located in Monte de la Cruz, Heredia. Two bedrooms, two baths, laundry room, fully furnished, security, electric gate. Rate $500 monthly. Phone  2267-6306  Email


Beautiful cottage in San Rafael, Heredia

Cottage in the mountain.  Surrounded by nature.  One bedroom, 1.5 bathrooms. Beautiful balcony and view. Bus line service, security.  $500 monthly.  Phone: 506-8739-0638  Email:

Maneul Antonio
The vacation homes at Manuel Antonio Estates offers luxury, comfort and peace of mind. We have numerous homes to chose from, all within walking distance of the town’s shops and restaurants and just a few minutes to the best beaches and the famous national park. While the homes are secluded and hidden among the rainforest, the surrounding area offers adventures like zip lines, white water rafting, mangrove kayaking and many more. All of the homes are available for short-term rentals, have easily accessible parking, cable TV, and Internet and are fully furnished. We are happy to assist with all your need for the perfect Costa Rican vacation.
Manuel Antonio Estates        TOLL FREE: 1800 346 9724
011 (506) 2777.3339

Beautiful 2-bedroom 2-bathroom American-style apartments with an elevator to your front door in a secure building located in Gringo Gulch the American Section of downtown San José. Costa Rica. Located between the Hotel Del Rey, the Hotel Mona Lisa and the Sportsman's Lodge and The Zona Blue (AKA) Little Habana across the street from Harry's Poas Bar, and next to the Holiday Inn.
apartment view
 There are 15 restaurants and American- style bars on this block and four supermarkets within a few blocks. There are 5 casinos within 2 blocks and dozens of hotels around this apartment. Included in your rental price, fast Internet, the best they have in Costa Rica, cable TV with 80 stations, water, washer
 and dryer. All you pay extra for is electricity. You have your own meter and receive a bill from the electric company every month.  This apartment has a American-style hot water system, hot water in both bathrooms and the kitchen. There is a 25-foot balcony to sit on and watch the people in San José walk by. The neighborhood Barrio Amón is the safest in San José For photos and more information contact:

Organic farm home
$800 plus utilities.
Two-bedroom, two-bath house, fully furnished, Internet included, cable TV available. Inside organic farm, safe and secure. In the country but close to town. Santa Bárbara de Heredia, Email for more info and pictures. Long term, NO DOGS.

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 or contact us at
or call at (506) 2654-5442.

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  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.

HP Cattle rentals
Mountain homes or farm for rent
Barva volcano, Heredia province
We offer for rent a gorgeous two-bedroom mountain chalet and a one-bedroom mountain home located on the slopes of the Barva Volcano, Heredia Province. The homes are situated at 7,300 feet altitude and within a working horse ranch just three kilometers from the Braulio Carrillo National Park entrance. From our homes one can hike to the Barva volcano crater-lake.  Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and breathtaking views of the Irazú volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of cloud forest bird species to include the resplendent quetzal.  The homes are incomparable in beauty and attention to detail within the Barva highland area.  We are only 35-55 minutes from Costa Rica’s three principal cities (Heredia, Alajuela, and San José), less than two hours from the central Pacific beaches, and three hours from the Caribbean beaches. Enjoy the tranquility of the mountains while maintaining quick access to the conveniences of the city and rapid access to other eco-tourist destinations in Costa Rica. Additionally, we can board your horses at a reasonable fee.  We can also offer our clients rental of a small and fully functional farm complete with stables, pasture, and office space.
Mountain chalet: $750.  Basic mountain home: $400.
Boutique mountain home: One-bedroom $850. Two-bedroom $1,000.
Small Farm that includes a chalet, basic mountain home, stables, and 8,000m2 of pasture/green areas: $1,500.

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A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page
Family home

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 236        
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Voice of Americap photo
Brent Clodgio checks a Thanksgiving turkey while tailgating before an NFL football game between the Detroit Lions and Chicago Bears in Detroit, Michigan.

Turkey and football mark
U.S. Thanksgiving Day

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Americans  marked the annual Thanksgiving holiday Thursday with family gatherings, bountiful meals, festive parades and bargain shopping.

In New York City on Thanksgiving morning, thousands of people lined the streets to watch the annual Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade. A tradition for 88 years, it featured marching bands, celebrity performances and giant balloons of cartoon characters such as Spider-Man, Snoopy and SpongeBob Squarepants.

U.S. military troops serving abroad kept the holiday, too, gathering at various bases for traditional feasts of roast turkey, stuffing and other foods.

In Kabul, Afghanistan, soldiers going through the cafeteria line got at least a small taste of home.

"You know, any Thanksgiving that you are on God's green earth is a good Thanksgiving to celebrate," soldier Brandon Galindo said.

In Washington, President Barack Obama thanked the troops via his weekly radio and Internet address. He also expressed gratitude for Americans who show compassion by helping those who are less fortunate.

Some Americans worked up appetites by pulling on running shoes and going out for organized races known as turkey trots.

Other sports enthusiasts exercised their eyeballs, watching football at stadiums or on TV. In the Midwestern state of Michigan, tailgaters at Detroit's Ford Field fired up their grills – some preparing turkeys – before a match between the hometown Detroit Lions and the Chicago Bears.

Another Thanksgiving tradition is shopping sales in crowded stores at the start of the holiday shopping season.

For years, sales began the day after Thanksgiving – on so-called Black Friday. Now they start on the holiday itself or even several days in advance and generally end the following Monday, known as Cyber Monday. According to the National Retail Federation, about 68 million people in the United States say they expect to shop over the Thanksgiving Day weekend.

A blast of rain and snow along the East Coast on Wednesday complicated weekend travel plans for many people in what is traditionally the year's busiest travel weekend in the United States.

Tradition says the first American Thanksgiving occurred in 1621, with early North American settlers commemorating a harvest after a harsh winter.

The nation's first president, George Washington, declared it a national holiday in 1789.

Tensions in Ferguson ease
for holiday and weather

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Tensions appeared to ease Thursday in the U.S. midwestern town of Ferguson, Missouri, after two nights of violence and looting following a grand jury decision not to prosecute a white police officer in the death of a black teenager.

Snow covered the city's streets Thursday, rather than protesters. The Missouri National Guard stood at the police station with no confrontations.

But around the country, there were scattered protests from Los Angeles, where 100 people were arrested, to Oakland and New York City. Demonstrators even marched in London.

The New York protests took place a block from the iconic Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade, where seven people were detained for pushing through barricades to disrupt the festivities.

Late Wednesday, Ferguson saw only scattered protests after two previous nights of unrest and rioting that left dozens of buildings damaged or burned. The unrest followed Monday's announcement that a white police officer will not be prosecuted over the shooting death of an unarmed black teenager.

A heavy police presence, snowy weather, and Thursday's Thanksgiving holiday may have helped to shrink the crowds by Wednesday night.

Earlier, hundreds of people demonstrated in front of the St. Louis City Hall on Wednesday, chanting “Shame, Shame.” Police arrested three people for failing to disperse, including one who also faces an assault charge.

The August shooting death of 18-year-old Michael Brown by officer Darren Wilson inflamed tensions in Ferguson and raised concerns about police violence and racial discrimination in the mostly black St. Louis suburb.

Earlier this week, a grand jury decided there was no probable cause to indict Wilson, who said he feared for his life during the confrontation with Brown. Wilson told reporters Tuesday that he has a clean conscience "because I know I did my job right."

Protesters across the country have used the case to highlight similar instances in which they say laws are not applied fairly towards African Americans. In Los Angeles and Oakland, California, police arrested dozens of people for a variety of protest-related charges -- but no significant violence was reported.

EU Parliament is targeting
Google for anti-trust action

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The European Parliament is urging European anti-trust regulators to break up Google.

The non-binding resolution passed Thursday, 384 to 174, as lawmakers try to prevent service providers bundling search engines with other commercial services.

Analysts said although not mentioned specifically by name, the U.S. tech giant responsible for 90 percent of European Internet searches was the target.

European Competition Commissioner Margrethe Vestager said she will review complaints made by several of the company’s competitors before deciding whether to proceed.

The European Commission has been investigating Google for four years after complaints from competitors including Microsoft and Expedia.

Google is also grappling with privacy issues, requests to scrub search results to comply with a court ruling, copyright concerns and tax controversies in the EU.

Three earlier attempts by Google to settle complaints and stave off a possible fine of up to $5 billion were rejected by the European competition commissioner. Critics say Google has unfairly subordinated rival company services in search results.

Oil producing monopoly
worries about world glut

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries has decided to maintain current levels of production, despite a worldwide oil glut that has driven market prices down more than 30 percent since June.

Meeting Thursday in Vienna, Austria, oil ministers decided to maintain the present output target of 30 million barrels a day. After the announcement, the price of benchmark Brent crude fell $4, to a four-year low of $73 a barrel.

The OPEC meeting, widely seen as one of the most crucial in years, came as shale oil production continues to surge in the United States. Forecasters say U.S. shale extraction will produce an additional 1 million barrels a day this year and 1 million barrels more in 2015. 

With current OPEC production at 30 million barrels per day, analysts say the surge in U.S. production is proving particularly vexing for the cartel, with no OPEC strategies evident for offsetting the glut.

Led by Saudi Arabia and the Gulf states of Qatar, the United Arab Emirates and Kuwait, OPEC pumps about one-third of the world's oil, and has faced recent pressure from its poorer members to cut output.

However, wealthier producers argued that cutting production at this time would result in further loss of market shares in North America, where demand for OPEC oil has been sharply reduced.

Analysts say the OPEC decision is a particular blow to Venezuela's economy, which is teetering on the brink of recession. The Caracas government is not seen as having the reserves necessary to ride out the weak prices, which experts say could last indefinitely.

Sioux language returns
with youthful learners

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

One evening a week, young and old gather in Michael Moore’s classroom in Fort Yates, North Dakota, to learn Lakota, the language of their Sioux tribal ancestors.

For many of the students here at Sitting Bull College, it's a tongue their great grandparents spoke fluently at home.

But that changed in the early 1900’s, when thousands of Native American children were sent to boarding schools where they were told to assimilate, learn English and forget all aspects of their native culture.

Gabe Black Moon, who co-teaches Lakota with Moore, remembered his time at one such school.

“The government punished us for speaking our language, and I've seen that happen. It happened to me," he said. "Day one, I went to school, I couldn’t speak English. I got punished pretty bad.”

Renewed efforts to preserve Lakota for future generations received national recognition earlier this year when President Barack Obama visited Standing Rock Native American Reservation, where he praised Sioux tribal leaders’ for revitalizing the endangered tongue.

One of the few Sioux Indians left who speaks fluent Lakota, Black Moon said he now devotes his days to making sure the language doesn't die out with his generation.

He said he is heartened to see younger generations learning to communicate in precisely the manner from which their own parents were discouraged from speaking.

One such student, Tiffany Baker, said she decided to learn Lakota to talk with her two-year-old daughter, who is in an immersion program at the college.

She said her own father rarely spoke Lakota.

“As the elders start passing away, they are taking all their knowledge that they have," she said, describing that class as vital to reclaiming a part of their culture that was nearly lost. "It’s up to us to learn it so that we can carry it on.”

As the White House prepares to host more than 500 tribal representatives for an annual conference in Washington Wednesday, it's hoped cultural preservation programs of exactly this kind will receive further acknowledgement and support.

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Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

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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 4030-5480 or 8339-2112.

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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.

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
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
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Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.

Visit our Web Site:

English calls: (Cristian Arce) Phone: 
(506) 2494-0016 
(506) 8309-0173
English calls :  (Luis David) Phone: 
(506) 6154-1940

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia 884
Beautiful large house in Grecia, Costa Rica, with the best fresh natural weather. The property includes 9 challets and and 12.000 m2 of land,  1,000 m2 of construction. Price $498.000. Click HERE!
Grecia 881
Beautiful house in Grecia, Costa Rica,  2 kilometers from the city.   340 m2 of land.
Price $135.000. Click
Grecia 898
Beautiful house in Grecia downtown. Full security cameras. Land 250 m2.  Price $400,000.  Click HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

La Fortuna Distress Sale
Divorce forced wife to return to the U.S. with bills to pay. Just wants to get out from under. Modern 2-bedroom home on over 1100m2 intended for apartments or condos. Easy walk to center of town, great volcano view. $140,000 with 50 percent financing arranged. On vacation rental program now producing nice income, but Costa Rica no longer in her future. For details contact

Ringle resort
on one big lot in Esterillos Oeste, (Central Pacific)
Located on a breezy hill just 4 minutes walk to the beach, surf and tide-pools, only 20 minutes drive north to Jacó nightlife and shopping or south to the rural town of Parrita.

First, a 2-storey, 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1½-bathroom house with big kitchen and living room.  Full-width verandah with eating and sitting areas, overlooking lawn, pool and gazebo. Sitting balcony at upper, bedroom level.  Carport. and laundry. 

Second, a completely private single-storey. 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1-bathroom home with big back yard at a lower level on the same, big fully titled 1,100M2 lot.. Full security bars at all doors and windows, plus locking vehicle access and pedestrian gates at the street. In a very safe neighborhood, with private and natural surroundings

Well maintained, fully and tastefully furnished and equipped, hot water, local phone, cable TV/DVD and high speed wireless internet   The houses have been rented for both long-term and vacation for $100/$80 per day and $1,500/$1,200 per month respectively. See this place, you will love it! Then make an offer. E-mail or call (506) 8386-8825.  Rodney, asking $350,000.

Condo montage
Cariari luxury condo for sale
 PRICE REDUCED FROM $235,000 to $195,000
This is not an ordinary condo. Completed one year ago, a $45,000 renovating made it an exquisite dwelling. As soon as you walk in you know it is a special home. No detail has been overlooked, even minuscule ones. The owner has a need to move on, and someone lucky will be the beneficiary of the fine detailed work. The home itself has three bedrooms, two and half bathrooms plus a maid’s quarters with its own bathroom. Also, it has a living room, dining room and a gorgeous kitchen with a kitchenette. There’s also a small outdoor patio. Being the end unit of this four-home condo complex, there’s parking space for three vehicles.  Approximately 240 sq. meters. All this near the Cariari Golf and Country Club and its renowned Tom Facio golf course. The club also has amenities such as a fitness centre, exercise room, Olympic swimming pool, sauna, 12 tennis courts and many other benefits. Tel:  8384-9608 or 2293-9054  Price $195,000.

Atenas home
This developer's prime lot with super house is being offered in Roca Verde, 7,006 M2 of gentle grade, all landscaped for tropical effect, 3 bedrooms 2 baths with tile floors and hardwood kitchen, near the entrance of the neighborhood. Great floor plan on this one! There is a double carport, and a large patio and pool, wheelhouse style living room and many other features. View, large usable lot, close to town, nice, oh yeah. $495,000.

More photos HERE!
Another 'live in the view' home in Puriscal
$179,900 includes:
Lot on river, concrete road, custom kitchen & bath with granite counter tops, PEX plumbing, 2” Styrofoam, sandwiched in steel roof, 4” concrete/recycled Styrofoam & steel walls, laminated, bronzed windows, custom wood doors, appliances and all transfer taxes, and fees.

2, 900 sq feet under roof, 1,250 sq feet inside walls, 2 bedroom, 2 ½ baths, laundry room, three separate patio areas, covered carport, shade trees, in upscale, secure project.  This project has river with protected areas & walkways. It is only 10 minutes on all paved roads to Santiago de Puriscal, 45 minutes to La Plaza Mall/Hospital CIMA and SJO airport, and 1 ½ hours to Pacific Beaches. It has recently upgraded public water supply and dependable ICE electric and high-speed internet.
Please come visit our projects and meet four new homeowners who have recently moved into their new “live in the view” homes to verify how happy they are and that they all came in under budget. CONTACT: George Lundquist  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
To see more Photos of this house, click HERE!

Maneul Antonio
Manuel Antonio Estates focuses on building vacation homes for clients within Manuel Antonio Estates and Palmas Pacifica. We take care of the details from permits and design to supervision of construction and management of the rentals, if needed. We provide privacy and security, and our gated community offers shared common recreational facilities, beautiful landscaping and parking areas. Our homes and lots are located just minutes from the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. If you've ever considered buying a second home, just minutes from the beach, do not hesitate, if you have any questions or would like to request more information please take full advantage of our Costa Rica real estate services and contact us today!
Manuel Antonio Estates    1 800 346-9724  (506) 8815-9606.

Ciudad Colon
Great Deal!! Apartment in condo with pool and extensive green areas:
Ciudad Colón, San José $112,000
The apartment has a master bedroom with a large ensuite bathroom with bath tub, and a smaller second bedroom/office with air conditioning. It has a second full bathroom, living/dining room, laundry room with hot water tank and storage area. The kitchen comes with granite countertops, a breakfast bar and new dishwasher. It has 82 m2 of construction. 2 balconies with beautiful views of the river and mountains. Private parking for one car. Elevator and a well presented reception area. Located in a very quiet and private neighborhood just 400 meters from the centre of Ciudad Colón. Within minutes to all major amenities in Santa Ana and Escazú. Easy access to the beach (less than 1.5 hrs).  24-hour security, visitor parking, pool, extensive and lush green areas, BBQ area, children’s playground and its own water treatment plant. Contact (506) 6022-9294 or 6022-9967, for further info or to arrange a viewing.

Suenos montage
Outrageous blowout prices on oceanfront condos in Los Sueños!

Located in the private Bay Residence enclave overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Los Sueños Resort and Marina, there are three gorgeous units available at unbelievable bargain pricing from $589,000.  All of these beautiful units are three bedrooms and two baths, 2,200 square feet, fully furnished and ready to move in.  Development includes a gym, access to 3 pools, jacuzzis, BBQ areas and the Beach Club.  If you’ve always wanted to own in Los Sueños, now is the time!  Contact  or call 8702-0778.  From U.S. call 209-482-1788.

Top floor unit: $649,000   Second floor unit: $675,000  Garden unit: $589,000

Newly available in Roca Verde
Well-built home of 215 m2, 3 bedrooms, two bath on 1,150 m2 of lot, with attractive rock retaining wall, carport, and a pool. Indoors there are high, vaulted hardwood ceiling, bright rooms, a laundry room.  The floor is ceramic tile in pastel shades. $247,000. Photos: 2446-5587.

San Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya.7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 ft. elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Direct TV via sling box on Internet. $199,000 Contact   Check out slide show HERE!

Condo montage
Cariari luxury condo for sale
This is not an ordinary condo.
Completed one year ago, a $45,000 renovating made it an exquisite dwelling. As soon as you walk in you know it is a special home. No detail has been overlooked, even minuscule ones. The owner has a need to move on, and someone lucky will be the beneficiary of the fine detailed work. The home itself has three bedrooms, two and half bathrooms plus a maid’s quarters with its own bathroom. Also, it has a living room, dining room and a gorgeous kitchen with a kitchenette. There’s also a small outdoor patio. Being the end unit of this four-home condo complex, there’s parking space for three vehicles.  Approximately 240 sq. meters. All this near the Cariari Golf and Country Club and its renowned Tom Facio golf course. The club also has amenities such as a fitness centre, exercise room, Olympic swimming pool, sauna, 12 tennis courts and many other benefits. Tel:  8384-9608 or 2293-9054  Price $214,500.


Beach Front Home - Central Pacific Coast
Pristine condition, recently renovated. The best surfing and boogie boarding in the country. The most magnificent ocean and sunset view. New 20-year, fully registered concession on one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. Easy access from San José (1 hour 25 minutes) located between Jacó and Manuel Antonio, in Esterillos Oeste.  2 or 3 bedrooms. Center room can be living room. House with 2 1/2 baths. Separated rancho with kitchen and large entertainment patio. Landscaped garden with no water shortage. Has both municipal and well water with automatic watering system. Direct access to the beach as no road is in front of property. Protected land on one side of the property for additional privacy.  Alarm system and complete shutters for security while away. Lot approximately 1,725 square meters, Asking price: $385.000.  Contact to Paul at local phone 506- 2637-8858  Cell phone 506- 8823-8550 .  US Mobile 908-400-9772  Emails:  and


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  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:

ARenal property
Location: Near Arenal        Price: $2.7 million
Size: 113 acres
Web site:

The farm is at the highest point on a stunning ridge bordered by pristine Costa Rican primary forest on all sides of the property, with active wildlife all throughout the area. On each of its gently rolling terraced lomas you get a glimpse of Volcán Arenal from a distance. This property has four different lagunas, a working organic farm and nursery, mature fruit trees, sheep corral, ideal for grazing horses with stunning views from all the hillsides. The Northern Zone of Costa Rica is the country's best kept secret, providing a perfect home base location to travel the country's many destinations while still maintaining the best climate at 400 meters above sea level.

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call center
Call center for rent ready to go !
13 work stations, good equipment, good location, Rohrmoser, two blocks from Plaza Mayor. $4.000 per month. Call Kevin 8366-6861.

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:

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A.M. Costa Rica's
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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 236
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rustic home
Tecnológico de Costa Rica photo
This rustic dwelling will be used as a dining hall and housing for visitors.

Talamanca Bribri graduate as guides

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Some 17 students in Talamanca have been awarded the title of local native tourism guides after completing training organized by Tecnológico de Costa Rica. A ceremony was held in Amubri de Talamanca at the Centro de Capacitación Iriria Alakölpa Ú.

This is the first class of local guides.

The Universidad Estatal a Distancia and the Instituto Costarricense de Turismo also were sponsors, said Tecnológico de Costa Rica, which is based in Cartago. Also involved was the Asociación de Desarrollo Indígena del Territorio Bribri.

The program included training in English. For the students graduation now provides the opportunity for employment. Guides are licensed in Costa Rica. Part of the program was training in business.

The training center was set up in 2008 and contains computer hookups and a library.

Bribri are one of the two major native groups in the eastern side of the Talamanca. Some of the communities are remote and welcome tourists to live in the lifestyle of the residents.

Bank asks brokers to help sell properties

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Banco Nacional has tapped the Cámara Costarricense de Corredores de Bienes Raíces to help market the properties the bank has taken over.

Banco Nacional said that 500 members of the real estate chamber will work with its 10 employees who are designated to handle repossessed properties.

The bank also said that some of the properties were being offered at discounts up to 50 percent. The bank also is making 20-year loans on some of the properties, it said.

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From Page 7:

Bankers go on high alert for holidays

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The slug of Christmas money coming into the economy has the nation's bankers on edge. The Asociación Bancaria Costarricense and law enforcement Thursday announced plans to prevent some crimes.

They have a big job.  The bankers said that there are robberies outside of banks and at automatic tellers as well as frauds with checks, fake dollars and fake lottery tickets.

The Instituto Nacional de Estadísticas y Censos puts the nation's work force at  1,563,000 persons, and that means some 724 billion colons will be paid out in the next two weeks as the Christmas aguinaldo. That's about $1.3 billion.

Many Costa Ricans still shop with cash instead of credit or debit cards.

So until Jan. 31, bank security officers and law enforcement officers will be mounting extra patrols and keeping a close eye on potential trouble spots, the bankers said in an announcement.

There will be security officers in plain clothes, too, with the special job of spotting accomplices who may be watching for bank customers with large amounts of cash.

One reason many banks prohibit the use of cell phones within their buildings is to prevent this. The accomplice notifies bandits waiting nearby.