WESTERN BUREAU: Director of Sports at the University of Technology (UTech), Anthony Davis, says Jamaica’s long-term success in track and field and that of the wider sporting disciplines at the international level depends heavily on the development of a good collegiate system. Davis, who heads one of Jamaica’s most prestigious college sports programmes at UTech, was the keynote speaker at yesterday’s launch of the third staging of the Montego Bay City Run, at the Holiday Inn Resort. “Once upon a time we never had a vibrant collegiate system, but now it’s been growing exponentially and because of the direct link we now have genuine track and field stars on the rise in our universities and colleges,” Davis said. “This can only mean a sustained presence of high quality athletes at the national and international levels for Jamaica,” he noted. Davis has witnessed the rise of many local track and field stars to have benefited from attending US colleges and universities through various scholarships. He believes the system has improved for young stars to be schooled and trained locally. “I have nothing against a student wishing to access higher education and training elsewhere, but we have seen a dramatic drop in the numbers opting to do so. Instead, we see them getting into local universities and colleges, train locally and are now at the top of the world in respective events,” Davis said. “It shows we are on the right path and are doing the right things to educate and elevate our student athletes,” cited Davis. According to Davis, the approximately 21 universities and colleges across Jamaica have been making great investments to upgrade coaches and facilities to meet the growing local demand. “Before this we depended on our talents being developed overseas, primarily in US colleges and while that served its purpose and still does, I am of the view that we have been more than holding our own with the rise, development and upkeep of our own stars. And that is always good for Jamaica,” he stated. Davis is also a committee member of the International University Sports Federation (FISU). The MoBay City Run is set for May 1, 2016 and projected to attract more than 2,000 local and international marathon runners. It seeks to raise $5 million for tertiary level students in western Jamaica.
Road repairs. The new plan accelerates the timeline for desperately needed improvements, spending $4 billion overall on road repairs next budget year. Projects must be done on time and on budget, with strengthened warranties to ensure quality. Workforce development. Michigan students will have more opportunities to train for high-demand jobs and higher wages through a $100 million program Gov. Rick Snyder has named the Marshall Plan for Talent. It’s part of the strategy to continue Michigan’s economic comeback, which has seen unemployment drop from 14.6 percent in June 2009 to under 5 percent this spring. The legislation advances to the governor for his consideration. Categories: Daire Rendon News,News Support for families. More money will be invested to support access to health care, including mental health services. Investments also will be increased in programs for children and seniors. ### 12Jun Rep. Rendon: State budget supports Camp Grayling, other northern Michigan needs Savings for taxpayers. While investing more in top priorities, overall the state is spending less in the next budget year than during the current year. Budgets for several state departments will decline as state government becomes more efficient and eliminates waste. State Rep. Daire Rendon was successful in her efforts to include financial help for Camp Grayling and its law enforcement training site in a state budget given final legislative approval today.Rendon helped secure $75,000 to improve a facility used to train law enforcement officers from across northern Michigan at Camp Grayling. She also helped secure $125,000 to remove trees as a safety precaution near the Grayling Army Airfield, an important general aviation center used by both civilian and military aircraft.“Supporting Camp Grayling is vital to our military, which is important in itself,” said Rendon, of Lake City. “But the impact of these investments goes well beyond Camp Grayling. They are important to the economy and the safety of our entire community.”Rendon said the new state budget will save taxpayers money overall while improving Michigan’s economic future, schools and roads. Some of the other highlights for the budget year beginning Oct. 1 include:New resources will help struggling schools get better and allow good schools to flourish. More than a quarter of the overall budget proposal goes to K-12 schools, with $14.8 billion — including the largest annual per-student increase in 15 years, ranging from $120 to $240 per student. Early literacy and support for academically at-risk students are priorities.