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California

CHP: Motorcycle Awareness Is A Group Effort

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California is home to more than 1.3 million licensed motorcyclists and some of the best riding weather year round. Unfortunately, the state has also experienced an increase in the number of people killed in motorcycle-involved collisions.

The California Highway Patrol (CHP) is preparing to address the problem with the help of a federal grant that will fund a yearlong, lifesaving effort. “Motorcycle awareness is a priority for the California Highway Patrol and a key to saving lives on the roadway,” said CHP Commissioner Joe Farrow.

“Education combined with enforcement will help reinforce the concept that all motorists need to safely share the road.”

Each year hundreds of motorcyclists are killed in collisions and thousands are injured. According to preliminary data from the CHP’s Statewide Integrated Traffic Records System, there has been nearly a 20 percent increase in the number of motorcyclists killed from 2010 to 2011. The recent increase follows a two-year decline (2008-2010) in motorcycle-involved collisions.

To reverse the trend and reduce motorcycle-involved collisions resulting in injury or death, the CHP has begun an intensive public awareness campaign which will run through September 30, 2013. In addition to enforcement, the campaign includes an education component which will be achieved through public service announcements, social media, public outreach events, and motorcycle safety and road-sharing presentations throughout California.

“Without a continued focus on motorcycle safety education for all motorists, the number of motorcycle- involved collisions may continue to rise, especially as more Californians are turning to motorcycles as a means of transportation,” added Commissioner Farrow.

Union Bank Unveils Banking By Design

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Customized, “unbundled” checking account gives customers greater control over their day-to-day finances

SAN FRANCISCO – Union Bank, N.A., recently unveiled Banking By DesignSM an innovative new way of banking, which allows customers to design a checking account that fits their needs. Banking By Design “unbundles” the traditional checking account and offers a wide range of optional features, each with associated costs clearly visible and with many at no cost.

New and existing Union Bank customers can design their own checking account by choosing only the services they want. The base cost of $3 per month can easily be waived if the customer makes one direct deposit of $250 or more each statement period. Consumers can design their account at bankingbydesign.com, and after customizing it, they can call or visit a Union Bank branch to open the account. Accounts can also be designed in a Union Bank branch with the support of a personal banker, and the ability for consumers to open their Banking By Design account online after customizing will go live in January 2013, giving them yet another convenient option.

“Banking By Design was created in direct response to consumer research and demand for control and transparency in their banking, and its innovation builds on the idea that today’s consumer expects the ability to customize the products and services that are important to them,” said Union Bank Senior Executive Vice President Pierre P. Habis, head of Community Banking. “Consumers made it clear that they want a fair value exchange – they only want to pay for what they need. Banking By Design delivers on that, and we know this will be a welcome shift for consumers when it comes to their banking relationship with Union Bank.”

“Many categories today require consumers to choose from bundles at a set cost, while other categories, such as the computer industry, have evolved to enable consumers to customize a product based on their needs. With Banking By Design, we are bringing this approach to banking,” explains Union Bank Senior Vice President Maha Madain, head of Consumer Deposits and chief designer of Banking By Design. “Banking By Design is the future of responsible, transparent and responsive banking.”

Banking By Design’s initial offering is only the beginning as additional feature enhancements are already planned for 2013. The Banking By Design Web site design team from Eleven Inc. includes Human Factors Engineer Michael Neuman, formerly with Apple®. In support of the launch, Union Bank is debuting a new advertising campaign, and will also be adding an interactive viral component that allows users to create a Banking By Design commercial with an opportunity for their commercial to air on television in 2013.

To learn more about Union Bank’s Banking By Design or to design your own checking account, visit bankingbydesign.com.

Meet The Chef Who Feeds California's Pickiest Eaters —Your Kids!

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Ryan Douglas has worked as a chef preparing students' meals for eight years -- first at the University of California, Riverside campus, and for the last five years, with the Riverside School District. There he oversees 34,000 meals a day, including breakfast, lunch, and even supper.

Douglas is at the forefront of a revolution in school meals going on in school districts across California and the country.

Gone are the pre-cooked, high-fat meals where students couldn’t always name the food they were eating. In are salad and fruit bars, lemon-herbed chicken, whole grain breads -- foods that help students live healthier lives and do better at school.

A new law called the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act went into effect July 1 that requires schools to meet higher nutrition standards. Here's how Chef Douglas is offering students great tasting food that follow the new guidelines: "We take a whole protein and we add different seasonings and flavors to it, so we have our BBQ chicken, our lemon herb chicken, our grilled ranch chicken and our sesame teriyaki chicken. We present these, we showcase these, on a grill so that when the kids come out it's showcased, its garnished, it's smelling good -- and the kids come out and you look like you’ve been slaving over this grill all day for them. We're giving them a viable, healthy product."

These meals are available at very low prices to all students, and for free or less than $1 a meal for students who qualify.

Approximately 1 million California students are eligible for free or reduced price lunches but don’t participate in the program.

Parents are telling Chef Ryan they’ve noticed their children want healthier food at home, while teachers are reporting that students’ attendance rates are rising and they're more focused in the classroom.

Call your child’s school today to find out about how to enroll in it’s heal thy meal s program.

New Law Bans Cash for Copper

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California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed into law a bill by Assemblymember Wilmer Amina Carter, D-Rialto, that prevents metal recyclers from paying quick cash for copper.   
The "No Cash for Copper" Metal Theft Prevention Act, Assembly Bill 1508, goes into effect on January 1, 2013. The measure will bar copper thieves from getting up to $20 in cash on the spot from scrap metal recyclers for small amounts of copper that are combined with the redemption of beverage containers.  
Existing law requires all recycling centers that buy copper to check the seller's photo ID, take video or a photo of the seller and the material being sold, and also collect their thumb print. Cash is not allowed to be given instantly. The seller must come back three days later or have a check mailed to them.

Sellers, however, found a way to redeem quick cash for their scrap metals through a loophole in current law which allows an instant redemption of up to $20 if the metals were mixed with recyclables.

"The law had encouraged copper wire thieves to cut up the metal into little pieces. When combining it with recyclable cans, they could walk away with cash in hand," Carter said.

Over the past several years, copper theft has reached epidemic proportions, jeopardizing public safety and leading to severe injury or even death. Although the street value of stolen copper is usually only a few hundred dollars, time and resources spent to repair damage to businesses, schools, construction sites and utilities can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

"The damage to property and the risk to public safety can be much greater than the value of the metal," said Carter, who successfully championed legislation in 2011 which stiffen penalties for copper theft.

"Now that these two laws are in place, my hope is that thieves will think twice before they steal from our farmers, schools, churches, business owners, utilities and California taxpayers," Assemblymember Carter said.

New Law Bans Cash for Copper

E-mail Print PDF

California Governor Jerry Brown recently signed into law a bill by Assemblymember Wilmer Amina Carter, D-Rialto, that prevents metal recyclers from paying quick cash for copper.

The “No Cash for Copper” Metal Theft Prevention Act, Assembly Bill 1508, goes into effect on January 1, 2013.

The measure will bar copper thieves from getting up to $20 in cash on the spot from scrap metal recyclers for small amounts of copper that are New Law Bans Cash for Copper combined with the redemption of beverage containers.

Existing law requires all recycling centers that buy copper to check the seller’s photo ID, take video or a photo of the seller and the material being sold, and also collect their thumb print. Cash is not allowed to be given instantly.

The seller must come back three days later or have a check mailed to them.

Sellers, however, found a way to redeem quick cash for their scrap metals through a loophole in current law which allows an instant redemption of up to $20 if the metals were mixed with recyclables.

“The law had encouraged copper wire thieves to cut up the metal into little pieces.

When combining it with recyclable cans, they could walk away with cash in hand,” Carter said.

Over the past several years, copper theft has reached epidemic proportions, jeopardizing public safety and leading to severe injury or even death. Although the street value of stolen copper is usually only a few hundred dollars, time and resources spent to repair damage to businesses, schools, construction sites and utilities can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“The damage to property and the risk to public safety can be much greater than the value of the metal,” said Carter, who successfully championed legislation in 2011 which stiffen penalties for copper theft.

“Now that these two laws are in place, my hope is that thieves will think twice before they steal from our farmers, schools, churches, business owners, utilities and California taxpayers,” Assemblymember Carter said.

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