Madam Lena Nordstrom, Swedish Ambassador to Liberia, last Saturday challenged the graduates of the Booker Washington Institute (BWI) not to take lightly their accomplishments after attaining secondary diplomas in technical and vocational skills. They should rather see themselves as shining examples to other Liberian youth. “You are now challenged,” she told the 314 graduates, “to put your skills to work for the advancement of your communities and society as a whole.”This profound and challenging advice from Ambassador Nordstrom was given on her behalf by the Swedish Embassy’s Head of Development Cooperation, Ms. Elizabeth Harleman. For reasons unknown to herself, Ambassador Nordstrom’s charge to the BWI grads starkly reminded Observer Publisher Kenneth Y. Best of one line he remembered from the Valedictory Address of St. Teresa Convent’s dux in 1950, 66 years ago.Kenneth, then a bare-footed St. Patrick’s third grader, legs shining with palm kernel oil, had accompanied his older sister Muriel, a Convent junior clad in white, to the graduation.Standing in the crowded Convent auditorium (who would offer a poor, barefooted lad a seat?), Kenneth heard the brilliant 16-year-old dux tell her wildly clapping audience, “Today, I am no longer a mere school girl, but a responsible woman in the Republic.”Cora Ann, however, did not say which “republic” she was referring to. For immediately upon graduation she entered Cuttington College and Divinity School (now Cuttington University), where she soon earned her Bachelor’s degree, then went on to Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she took the Ph.D in Education. While atHarvard, she met and married a Nigerian chemical engineer and shortly thereafter he took her to Nigeria, where they found immediate employment. But during the Nigerian Civil War little over a decade later, the couple returned to the United States with their children. So Cora Ann was perhaps referring in her Valedictory Address to “the Republic of the World,” in the same way so many BWI and other Liberian graduates, following the 1980 coup d’état and our own civil war, are today rendering professional services all over the world. She became a senior official in the New Jersey School System.But “responsible woman in the republic”—is that not what the Swedish Ambassador told the BWI grads last Saturday? Urging them to take themselves seriously, just as Cora Ann Phelps took herself seriously 66 years ago, Ambassador Nordstrom told them: “You are a great example to other Liberian youth, and you are [challenged] to put your skills to work for your communities and your society as a whole.”Without knowing it—how could she? She is new here— Ambassador Nordstrom was telling them to follow the footsteps of such BWI graduates as Samuel Burnett and Harry Yuan, both Electricity graduates of BWI, the former in 1957, the latter in 1961, who went on to study Electrical Engineering in the USA and returned to head the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC), each in his time, as Managing Director. There are so many other Liberian technical institutions that have been headed by BWI graduates. We know of several who have served as Ministers of Public Works, among them Joseph Boayue, Class of 1938 (eighth grade), Yudu Gray, and arguably the most celebrated of them all, Gabriel Johnson Tucker, Class of ‘54. Tucker ran the Ministry with considerable success. The bridge linking central Monrovia to Bushrod Island, built under his watch, is named for him.Gabriel’s classmate, Edwin Dunbar, for many years ran a successful civil engineering firm in Texas, and Gabriel joined his classmate there during exile in the USA. It is because so many old BWI boys and girls, having left their alma mater and pursued advanced training in their various technical and vocational fields, are doing so well and making money because of it in the Diaspora, especially in North America, that the strongest of all Liberian alumni associations in that part of the world is the BWI Alumni Association of North America (BWIAANA).We pray for continued peace in Liberia that will allow these and other BWI graduates to travel to Sweden, other parts of Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa for advanced training to return and help rebuild Liberia. May some of them also return to Kakata and accelerate the expansion and refinement of Agricultural, Business, Technical, Vocational and Industrial training at their beloved “Dear Booker T.” Such a patriotic initiative, on the part of BWI Alumni, here and in the Diaspora will be an important contribution towards the realization of that most encouraging and laudable pledge by Madam Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of the Republic of Liberia, to make the Booker Washington Agricultural and Industrial Institute (BWI) “a center of excellence.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Budget 2019It was a showdown in last Thursday’s meeting of the Business Subcommittee of the Committee of Supply, as the parliamentary Opposition’s attempted to schedule more time to scrutinise the Ministry of the Presidency estimates were defeated by the Government.The Ministry of the Presidency has 11 programmes; far more programmes than any other Ministry with the exception of the Communities Ministry. It is understood that in light of this increased ambit, Opposition parliamentarian and committee member, Irfaan Ali proposed a half-hour extension of time to two and a half hours.In the minutes for the meeting seen by Guyana Times, this proposal did not find favour with the Government side. When the matter was put to the vote in the committee, it was defeated by the Government majority, leaving the time to examine this critical Ministry at two hours.The meeting was held in the Speakers’ Chambers of the National Assembly and was chaired by the Speaker, Dr Barton Scotland. Voting for the increased time were Opposition committee members and parliamentarians Ali, Juan Edghill, Dharamkumar Seeraj and Collin Croal.Voting against extending the time to scrutinise the Ministry were Government members – Foreign Affairs Minister Carl Greenidge; Social Protection Minister Amna Ally; Public Service Minister, Dr Rupert Roopnaraine; Junior Indigenous People’s Affairs Minister Valarie Garrido-Lowe; and parliamentarian John Adams.The Ministry of Presidency’s programmes include Petroleum and Energy Management, a major programme when the oil and gas sector is considered. In addition, Defence and National Security; Citizenship and Immigration Services; Social Cohesion, Youth and Sport and monies for the Guyana Defence Force (GDF) fall under this Ministry, which will be represented by Minister of State Joseph Harmon.Meanwhile, there was also discussion about Region Six, which was allotted one and a half hours for consideration. Ally requested that this time be shortened by half an hour, to make up for time allotted to Region Seven. According to the minutes, the committee was unable to reach a consensus and the matter was put to a vote, which the Government side once again won.ScrutinyIn one of the most controversial events to ever take place in the National Assembly, Police ranks stormed the parliamentary chambers during the consideration of the Budget 2018 estimates last year December; even as Edghill was attempting to scrutinise that very Ministry.At the time, the Opposition had also argued that the time allotted to scrutinise the Ministry of the Presidency was too short. But when he refused to back down from questioning certain line items of the Ministry, subsequent events resulted in Police being called.In the chaos that followed, Edghill’s parliamentary colleagues formed a human ring to protect the MP and there were claims of physical assault. Edghill was later barred by the Speaker from entering the chambers. When he showed up outside Parliament Building, he was subsequently arrested.At the time, Edghill had said that by ordering his arrest, the Government was seeking to avoid the scrutiny of the flawed 2018 Budget and the Ministry of the Presidency. It is a view the People’s Progressive Party supported, as the Party later expressed concern that slush funds were being hidden in the budget estimates fineprint.“Scrutiny is what the Government wants to avoid and even though I am being victimised in this manner, I will ask my colleagues, as far as is possible, to continue to scrutinise the Budget and to expose the corruption, slush funds and all the monies they (Government) plan to steal for political purposes stashed in that budget,” he had charged.“That budget is lumped with sums for political purposes and we will not run away from our task. I would hope that the budget gets the scrutiny it deserves, because the plan of the Government is to pass the budget without scrutiny and we will not give into that game plan,” Edghill had added.The perusal of Budget 2019’s estimates begins on Monday, December 10. The Ministry of the Presidency is the first Ministry to be examined, followed by the Office of the Prime Minister and the Legal Affairs Ministry.
…compels DPP, Judges to seek, grant orders freezing assets …former AG lambastes Government for invasive clause By Jarryl BryanNo other bill has touched off as much contention recently as the Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) Amendment Bill passed in the National Assembly on Friday.Besides the tax exemptions for Attorney General Basil Williams and other members of the Proliferation Financing National Coordination Committee, the parliamentary Opposition has accused Government of stripping away the discretionary powers of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) and the Judiciary with the Bill.Particularly, this applies when it comes to the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) seeking a freeze order against anyone flagged by the United Nations Security Council under the Proliferation Security Initiative.For instance, Clause 13, Subsection 6 of the Bill states: “The Director of Public Prosecutions shall immediately on notification by the Director, but not later than five days after the notice, apply ex parte to a Judge in Chambers for a freezing order in respect of the funds or assets of the listed person or entity …”Subsection 7 goes on to state “the court shall immediately, pursuant to the application of the Director of Public Prosecutions under Subsection 6, grant the freezing order where a person or entity is listed in accordance with the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1718 and its successor resolutions or United Nations Security Council Resolution 2231 and its successor resolutions”.Not finished with issuing directives to the DPP, the Bill goes on to state that the DPP must immediately serve the freeze order once it is obtained on the reporting entity, for example a bank, that would be holding the listed person’s property.The DPP’s office itself is insulated from State directives by the Constitution of Guyana. Article 187 (4) of the Constitution states “In the exercise of the powers conferred upon him or her by this article, the Director shall not be subject to the direction or control of any other person or authority.”According to the Opposition, the Bill removes the discretionary power of the Judiciary in granting freeze ordersRemoval of protectionand due processAccording to former Attorney General Anil Nandlall, who was instrumental in crafting the AML/CFT Bill under the former Government, the coalition’s amendments contradict the protections set out in the Constitution, the supreme law of Guyana.“These bills are littered with instances of a removal of protection and due process…But when we are internalising international requirements, we have a duty to ensure they comply with our Constitution, they can adapt to our society, that they do not conflict with other municipal laws of this land and that it is good, so we don’t accept wholesale what is given to us on a platter. Whenever international recommendations are made, they must go through a filtering process!”Nandlall recalled that as Attorney General, he sat and perused the Financial Action Task Force/Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (FATF/CFATF) recommendations for long hours to ensure they were adapted for Guyana while complying with international best practices. Citing Clauses 13, 6 and 7 of the Bill, Nandlall made it clear that the Bill was an unconstitutional one.“The Constitution, as we know, is the supreme law. Any law inconsistent with the Constitution would be unconstitutional to the extent of that inconsistency. In so far as this bill directs and mandates to the DPP, it is unconstitutional. It has to be refashioned in such a way that DPP maintains her discretion.”“We must know that this is wrong. How can we go to a judge for an application and tell the Judge he or she must grant. The Judge has an inherent power. The Judge may grant, but you have to make out a case for the Judge to grant!”The removal of Subsection 9 from Section 68 (A) of the principal Act was also zeroed in on by Nandlall. Nandlall said that that subsection had only allowed Customs Officers above the rank of supervisor and Police Officers above the rank of Superintendent the ability to enforce the AML/CFT law. The 2009 Act had given these specific ranks and higher, the power to seize money linked to terrorism.“What that means is any Police or Customs Officer is empowered to discharge draconian powers. That could not have been a CFATF requirement. We put these mechanisms in place for the protection of our citizens. None of you can guarantee the performance of every Police Officer out there. We know that there is misbehaviour in those agencies on certain occasions.”FunctionsThe Bill seeks to amend the AML/CFT Act and related legislation to strengthen the regime for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and proliferation financing (AML/CFT/PF).Clause three of the Bill amends Section 7A of the principal Act to satisfy recommendation 2 of the FATF which states that countries should designate an authority to have a mechanism that is responsible for national AML/CFT/PF policies.Only recently, at the Money Laundering/Terrorist Financing National Risk Assessment Seminar, Williams underscored the importance of coordination and information sharing among related agencies in the fight against money laundering.The US Department of State’s International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR) Volume Two of March 2018 had listed Guyana, among many other countries including the USA, as “major money laundering jurisdictions in 2017”.The report declared that there was a lack of strong interagency cooperation among AML and drug-fighting agencies, adding that these departments did not have adequate human resources and the necessary training for complete effectiveness.
1 Manchester United youngster Paddy McNair has revealed Jose Mourinho contacted him to wish him luck ahead of Northern Ireland’s Euro 2016 campaign.Mourinho was named as Louis van Gaal’s replacement at Old Trafford two weeks, the Portuguese boss taking over from the man who handed McNair his United debut in 2014.The defender has since totalled 21 appearances for his club, and good form has seen him named in Northern Ireland’s squad for the European Championships.The 21-year-old has won nine caps for his country, and he has revealed Mourinho has wished him luck ahead of the tournament.McNair said: “He sent me a text message wishing me good luck for the tournament – that was nice of him.“I’m sure he’ll be watching and I’ll be trying my best and hopefully he likes what he sees.”Another youngster to be given his debut by Van Gaal at Old Trafford is Marcus Rashford, whose incredible rise to prominence sees him as part of England’s squad for the Euros.The promising striker is unlikely to start for the Three Lions when their campaign gets underway against Russia on Saturday, but McNair has no doubts Rashford will develop into a top class star in the future.“He’s a very good player,” he added.“He came in at the end of season and it was breathtaking, in a way, how well he adapted, the goals he scored.“You see him in training, he’s got a lot of ability and I think he will be a top player.” Paddy McNair is part of Northern Ireland’s squad for Euro 2016
Day One of qualification in the annual primary school athletics challenge kicked off Tuesday at Finn Valley in keeping with other regions of the county.The ultimate aim is to join the list of qualifiers on May 30th again back at the superb facilities in Stranorlar.Many stand out performances amongst the 400 plus participants representing 12 schools and it’s the same all over again on Day Two today, Wednesday, with a further 12 schools registering. We will have more pictures and results tonight. PICTURE SPECIAL: FINN AREA SCHOOLS ATHLETICS QUALIFIERS was last modified: May 16th, 2012 by BrendaShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:PICTURE SPECIAL: FINN AREA SCHOOLS ATHLETICS QUALIFIERS
EXCLUSIVE: Declan Bonner will return to Donegal club management when the Donegal U21 season ends. Bonner will return to the management set-up at St. Michael’s – when the Donegal U21 campaign ends. Bonner joined the St. Michael’s set-up towards the end of last season and helped guide them into the last four of the Donegal SFC.However, they suffered a heavy drubbing at the hands of St Eunan’s in the semi-final – and their long quest for a Donegal SFC title was extended.It has been revealed however, that Bonner will return to The Bridge and will work again with Eddie Harkin for the 2016 season.Bonner attended a meeting with the St. Michael’s Senior panel last night, but it’s believed he won’t be joining up with the squad until his commitments with the Donegal U21’s are over. St. Michael’s have a wealth of quality and experience in their ranks and Bonner feels they’re capable of landing a Donegal SFC title.Donegal U21’s begin their Ulster championship campaign on the 16th of March against either Derry or Antrim who meet the preliminary round. EXCLUSIVE: DECLAN BONNER WILL RETURN TO CLUB MANAGEMENT AFTER DONEGAL U21 CAMPAIGN was last modified: February 7th, 2016 by Mark ForkerShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Declan BonnerGAAnewsSportSt Michaels
LANCASTER – A 20-year-old homeless man accused of fatally stabbing another man after a 5-year-old boy’s birthday party has been ordered to stand trial on a charge of second-degree murder. Eric Hernandez is charged in the April 16 slaying of 25-year-old Salvador Santos, who was killed after he asked a group of suspected gang members to stop smoking marijuana at the Palmdale party. Hernandez was bound over for trial following a preliminary hearing Tuesday on one count of murder and an allegation that a knife was used, prosecutors said. He remained in custody in lieu of $980,000 bail. Investigators said Hernandez was one of several men believed to be gang members and associates who were invited to the party by someone in the birthday boy’s family. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals Officials said several suspected gang members were smoking marijuana in the front yard of the Fifth Street East home when Santos asked them not to use drugs at the house – particularly during the boy’s birthday party. It is unknown if Hernandez was one of the men smoking marijuana at the time. Several hours after the initial confrontation, Santos confronted the group again, and the argument escalated into a fight. Others at the party tried to restrain the men when they began exchanging blows. While Santos was being held back, a man investigators believe to be Hernandez approached him and stabbed him nearly a dozen times, detectives said. The assailant got in a car and drove away. Santos was rushed to Antelope Valley Hospital, where he was pronounced dead soon after arrival. Hernandez was arrested several weeks later after he was seen driving away from his mother’s house on Third Street East in Lancaster, deputies said. Karen Maeshiro, (661) 267-5744 email@example.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Powerful kitchen exhaust fans do a good job of removing cooking odors and smoke. They also have the potential to depressurize a house, causing water heaters to backdraft and pulling ashes out of the fireplace and onto the hearth.Our ‘question of the week’ comes from Kevin, who explains that he will be installing a 600-cfm downdraft exhaust fan in the kitchen of a new Passivhaus residence. “Our HRV installer said that he has heard of people tying in their cooktop ventilation to their HRVs,” Kevin wrote. “However, I am concerned that this would invalidate the warranty and greatly shorten the lifespan of the unit.”John Brooks warned Kevin that the stovetop exhaust fan should not be tied in to an HRV.Andrew Henry suggested ventilating the kitchen differently — through a ceiling grille located a suitable distance away from the range. Do you think connecting a downdraft hood to an HRV is a good idea?(online surveys)Martin Holladay explained that a house with a 600-cfm downdraft exhaust fan needs a makeup air unit.Derek Vander Hoop noted that in Passivhaus building, the “perfect solution” is to connect the downdraft fan to a grease filter rather than exhausting the air directly outdoors. An HRV can then handle the moisture and odors.Robert Riversong advised that gas stoves should always be vented to the outdoors.What do you think?Should an energy-efficient home include a powerful exhaust fan?Must cooking odors always be vented outdoors?Should an HRV pull air from a kitchen?Read Kevin’s original question, and all of the responses it generated, here.If you’re interested in more information, check out these resources: “HVAC Equipment Can Overpower Wind and Stack Effect” “Exhaust Ventilation” “Designing a Good Ventilation System” “HRV or ERV?”
In 2008, a Dutchman named L. Korn found himself in Toronto buying windows for a house he was building back in the Netherlands. Unavailable at the time in Europe, the quad-pane insulated glass he wanted could be ordered from a Canadian manufacturer, and Korn was ready to do business. Korn placed an order for 193 insulated glass units — just the glass, no frames — with Eco Insulating Glass Inc. of Mississauga, Ontario in April 2009. The $40,400 order went to a warehouse in New York and from there was shipped by sea to his house in the Netherlands. Carpenters inserted the glass into frames that had been made in Guatemala and installed them. The krypton-filled insulated glass units (IGUs) consisted of two sheets of glass and two sheets of Heat Mirror film. The high-performance windows were part of Korn’s plan to use only the best green building materials he could find in the construction of his 3,000-square-foot, €1.2 million home. He also bought one spare unit and stored it in a garage, just in case something happened to one of the windows in the house.RELATED ARTICLESAdvances in WindowsAre High-Performance Windows Worth Their High Cost?Installing High-Performance WindowsAll About Glazing OptionsWindow Reflections Can Melt Vinyl Siding And by 2016, something did start to happen to the windows in his house. They began imploding. “The first IGs imploded in 2016,” Korn said in an email. “It made a big bang. I had no idea what happened. I reported the problem to Eco Insulating Glass on 29 November 2016.” Now, two years later, a total of nine windows have imploded. The manufacturer blames the problem on Korn’s decision to glue wood grilles on the outside faces of the glass and has voided its warranty. An engineer hired by Korn says the practice is common in Europe and that a manufacturing defect, not the grilles, is the most likely reason that the glass panels are failing. In the meantime, Korn is left with a number of shattered windows and a €135,000 estimate to replace them. The problem is not unknown Insulated glass units consist of two or more panes of glass, with the sealed space between them typically filled with gas, often argon or krypton. After the units are manufactured, the outer panes of glass are susceptible to some distortion as temperature and air pressure change, says Dutch engineer Walter Frank Westgeest. The phenomenon is well known in the glass industry, but it rarely results in a problem. “Yes, I’ve seen many glass panes that are curved by air pressure differences or other causes, but it hardly ever results in breaking,” Westgeest said in a telephone call. “If you look at buildings, you can see all kinds of curvature in the glass panes, especially with a certain ratio of length and width.” An exasperated Korn hired Westgeest to find out what happened after an extended exchange of emails with the manufacturer got him nowhere. Westgeest, who works for the Dutch firm Bouwkans, is a building scientist who spent 10 years working solely for a glass consultancy. In a report on Korn’s windows last year, Westgeest said that all of the IGs he inspected, except for one, appeared to be concave, with interior panes always distorted more than the exterior pane of glass. The wood window grilles that had been glued onto the glass were often detached, meaning they had pulled away from the glass and could no longer impede movement. Westgeest said that he measured distortion with a straight ruler and a sliding gauge. The distortion ranged from 2mm to 8 mm (0.06 inch to 0.31 inch) on the inside pane, and from 1 mm to 4 mm (0.03 inch to 0.157 inch) on the outside pane. The uninstalled spare unit also showed an inward distortion: 3.8 mm (0.149 inch) on the inside pane. Why do glass surfaces deflect? Westgeest cites three reasons why insulated glass units become concave or convex in shape: The gas content inside the IG is constant, but the ambient air pressure where the window is installed varies. The IGU is convex at low ambient air pressure and concave at high ambient air pressure. He describes this as a “dynamic process whereby the IGU will eventually return to its original flat shape …” It is not, he adds, enough to break glass panes, but the effect is magnified when the unit was manufactured under air pressure conditions significantly different than where the windows are put into service. Sealants and spacers are designed to contain the gas inside the IGU, but the gas can still leak out. Argon and krypton have a tendency to move from an area of high concentration to an area of low concentration, and materials used for sealant barriers let some molecules go through more easily than others. Krypton and argon can get out, but larger oxygen and nitrogen molecules in the atmosphere can’t get in to replace it. Westgeest calls this a “molecular sieve.” In time, the sealed space inside the window is at a much lower pressure than ambient air pressure. A dessicant is placed inside the sealed space to absorb moisture, but when a dessicant with the wrong specifications is used, gases like argon, krypon and nitroten are absorbed instead. “Because these gases are the main content of these IGUs, the absorption or ‘disappearance’ leads to a lower pressure in the unit, which will lead to concave shaping of the IGU,” his report says. Westgeest said the insulated glass industry has, in time, learned to cope with these problems and that reports of glass failure now are unusual. For example, IGUs can be subjected to big differences in air pressure when they are shipped from a low-altitude manufacturing plant to a house high in the Swiss Alps. Manufacturers counter the problem by inserting very small tubes that vent the interior of the window and let excess pressure escape. When the windows arrive at their destination, the tubes are sealed. Westgeest believes that either a faulty dessicant or a faulty sealant is to blame for Korn’s window problems. “I can’t imagine anything else,” he said. “That’s the only thing I can really think of. It can be worsened by transport, but I don’t think that’s the primary cause.” In the U.S. early IGU makers learned to tweak the internal pressure of the windows so they wouldn’t rupture on the trip from a manufacturing site in the Denver area (elevation of 5,000 feet) to the Houston area, one expert who didn’t want to be quoted by name told GBA. Early on, windows failed. Then manufacturers learned how to adjust. These days, failures on the scale of Korn’s experience are rare indeed. The manufacturer blames the applied grilles Glenn MacEachern, vice president for sales at Eco Glass, believes the problem with Korn’s windows stems from the decision to glue wood grilles to the outside of the glass, not a manufacturing defect. That was the basis of a letter from Eco attorney Stephen Walters to Korn last year in which the company disavowed any responsibility for the breakage. Walters said the 20-year warranty on the window units excludes “glass breakage from any cause” and exempts units that have been retrofitted with “any type of solar film or tinted film or any other added covering to the original glass surface.” “We have inspected the unit you shipped to Eco for review and note that your complaint is in respect of the breakage of the glass and that, in addition, the glass had an added covering to the original glass surface,” Walters wrote. “As such, the products supplied are exempted from any warranty coverage. The glass breakage is excluded from coverage, and the glass was covered with a non-factory covering and excluded from coverage.” Bottom line: “Eco has no obligation pursuant to the warranty or otherwise to replace the glass.” In a telephone call, MacEachern said the grilles could interfere with the “pumping action” that any IGU undergoes with changes in ambient air pressure. “It’s a violation of the warranty,” he said. “A unit has to be able to change with changing environmental conditions.” He said he suspects Eco’s warranty is no different on that point than a “vast majority” of IGU manufacturers. Moreover, Eco has not had any other complaints of this kind in the more than 30 years it’s been making IGUs with the Heat Mirror film developed by Southwall Technologies. “If this problem were going to be across the board, we would have had a similar situation exist in production other than Mr. Korn’s,” he said. “This one example is the only one that we’re aware of … If there’s a problem with our production methodology then why is it just this one specific job? That’s it. I’ve not seen it anywhere else.” The privately held company manufacturers IGUs, but not finished windows, for the North American market. MacEachern declined to be specific about production volume or sales. A long string of emails goes nowhere Korn has posted his tale of woe online, including a series of email exchanges with MacEachern, another Eco Glass executive named Jim Larkin, and officials at Eastern Chemical, which owns the Heat Mirror technology. The emails trace Korn’s repeated requests for an explanation and help, from the early days following the initial implosion in 2016 through his frustrated accusation last month that Eco Glass was refusing to take responsibility for its production errors and didn’t seem to care about damaging its reputation. Eco at first seemed eager to help. In January 2017, MacEachern wrote that he was trying to find an engineer in Europe who could help assess the problem. He offered possible causes for the breakage — the frames around the units were too tight, or the sealant on the window edges was not sufficiently protected from UV light. “Please rest assured that we are working diligently to address your situation,” he said in an email. In a followup email in April 2017, MacEachern told Korn that he was waiting to hear from Eco’s gas supplier as well as suppliers of polyurethane and silicone, who might also have some ideas. “I’ve always been a proponent in assessing the root cause for failures so that we simply do not repeat the problem again for you,” MacEachern said. “I want to get to the bottom of things and correct the situation.” But as time went on, the correspondence became less cordial. By last month, Eastman was asking to be dropped from any further inquiries, and Eco made it clear it was at the end of its efforts to help. “The bottom line here is that Eco Insulating Glass Inc. simply cannot be responsible for the mishandling or misuse of our product after delivery,” Larkin wrote. Next steps uncertain Korn, 56, said he originally found Eco through a Google search. No one in Europe was using Heat Mirror film at the time, so he piggybacked a visit to the Eco factory with a family trip. The visit went well. “It was all OK,” he said, “they’re not a big company.” Separately, Korn had selected a Guatemalan firm at a building fair to manufacture the frames. He also visited that company before placing his order. The window frames were shipped separately to Holland where they were married up with the glass from Canada and installed in the house. The windows were installed without incident, and it wasn’t until 2014 that someone pointed out to Korn that one of the windows seemed to have a concave shape. The following year, the first of the windows imploded, he said in a telephone call, but the window was in a room that didn’t get much use and he put the problem out of mind. But the following year, two others went and Korn’s concerns grew. At Eco’s request, Korn removed a damaged window and sent it to the company for testing. On the advice of his engineer, he declined to send Eco the only uninstalled unit he had. But, Korn says, he never was told what the tests revealed. Eco’s did not follow through on its initial offer to find an engineering firm in Europe to look into the problem, and the company did not comment on the results of Westgeest’s €1,200 report, he said. In short, Korn doesn’t seem to have much leverage with Eco, and not much of a way forward without hiring a lawyer, a move he recognizes as an expensive next step. “If you start talking to a lawyer, the first thing he says is, ‘Well, send me 10,000 Euros and I’ll have a look into it.’ That’s the first thing they say,” Korn said. “… I’m looking into it but first I want to try if I could convince Eco Glass to handle this in a normal way. “They have tried to get around it, and of course that has made me very upset and angry,” he continued. He hopes the website he has created will prompt others who have experienced the same problem to step forward, but so far none has. “I have no idea,” he said when asked what he will do next. “I’m just waiting and hoping.”
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