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P.E.I. entry-level cooks program back in the kitchen after COVID-19 pause

More than a dozen cook trainees on P.E.I. are back in the kitchen after COVID-19 forced a six-month pause to their education. 

The free entry-level cook training program is offered by the Tourism Industry Association of Prince Edward Island and the Culinary Institute of Canada, with funding from Skills P.E.I. 

The goal is to train cooks to work in Island kitchens and help restaurants fill their labour gaps.

“Not a two-year graduate, not a chef, but someone who can come in at a very entry level,” said Austin Clement, program manager at the Culinary Institute. “Someone who understands food safety, somebody who understands the sense of urgency, preparation of small little sandwiches, soup, salads — that sort of thing.” 

Demand from restaurants

Clement said the program was launched in 2019 at the request of the food service industry on P.E.I., which was struggling to find enough staff. “In the past,

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Springfield Garden Club readies for remote program

Springfield Garden Club Horticulture Education Chairman and Master Gardener Janet Dolder is passionate about native plants.

“It is not unusual for gardeners and landscapers to label any plant that wasn’t intentionally planted as a weed that needs to be eradicated,” she said. “There are so many beautiful native shrubs, trees, perennials and groundcovers that will easily adapt to growing in our backyards. It only takes a little research and a presentation or two with an expert … to get started.”

The garden club’s October program, “Why We Care About Native Plants” is just such a presentation. Featuring Dan Jaffe, it will take place Friday, Oct. 16, at noon via Zoom.

Jaffe is a well-known horticulturist, propagator and landscape designer. He earned a degree in botany from the University of Maine and an advanced certificate in Native Plant Horticulture and Design from the New England Wild Flower Society. He is currently

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House report is sharply critical of Treasury’s handling of payroll program

Ultimately, the subcommittee concluded that instead of preserving jobs, the Trump administration’s implementation of the Payroll Support Program “significantly weakened the Program’s impact on job preservation.”

Treasury officials did not respond to a request for comment, but have previously said that they implemented the coronavirus relief package known as the Cares Act “as written,” adding that it has been critical to keeping workers on the job.

The subcommittee also faulted some of the companies that received government assistance.

“Documents uncovered during the Select Subcommittee’s investigation show that aviation contractors sought to avoid ‘unnecessary costs’ by terminating employees before executing [Payroll Support Program] agreements,” the report said.

The subcommittee said briefings with Treasury officials and contractors as well as its review of tens of thousands of documents found that the agency knew that companies were conducting layoffs, even as their applications for payroll support were pending, but failed to raise objections

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Garden Club Sponsoring Virtual Forest Health Program Tonight

PARSIPPANY, NJ—The Mt. Tabor Garden Club is teaming up with Parsippany’s mayor and local scholars and ecologists to present “Forest Health: A Virtual Citizen Science Program,” on Monday, Oct. 6 at 7 p.m.

“Learn from a study documenting nearly 300 forests in Northern New Jersey how forest understories have changed since the mid-20th Century,” the club said, in an announcement. The program will also cover “the impact of deer and invasive plants on our natural surroundings, evidence-based strategies to address reforestation and ways to raise the awareness of the public on forest stewardship.”

According to National Geographic, forests cover about 30 percent of the world’s land mass. Between 1990 and 2016, the World Bank said a half million square miles—an area bigger than South Africa—of forest were lost.

Parsippany Mayor Michael Soriano will make opening remarks on citizen science outreach. Jay Kelly, Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Science at

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PLNAR Joins Guidewire PartnerConnect Solution Alliance Program; Publishes Ready for Guidewire Integration for Virtual Interior Inspections


Guidewire Software, Inc. (NYSE: GWRE), the platform P&C insurers trust to engage, innovate, and grow efficiently, today announced that PLNAR, a leading provider of virtual claims technology solutions for the insurance industry, has joined Guidewire PartnerConnect as a Solution partner. The companies also announced that PLNAR’s new Ready for Guidewire validated add-on is now available to insurers in the Guidewire Marketplace.


Insurance customers have high expectations of their insurers and are not afraid to find a new insurer if their expectations are not being met. According to a 2020 J.D. Power study, homeowners insurance claimants can be driven to shop their policies with other insurers if they are required to exert a high level of effort to get their claim resolved. To make the interior property claims process as smooth as possible and help insurers meet these high expectations, PLNAR created their contactless claims platform to put

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