Showing posts with label PROFNET. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PROFNET. Show all posts

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

PROFNET EXPERT ALERTS: Offshore Drilling / Tax Planning / H-1B Filing

6 Apr 2010 15:14 Africa/Lagos

PROFNET EXPERT ALERTS: Offshore Drilling / Tax Planning / H-1B Filing


Obama Reverses Ban on Most Offshore Drilling (9 responses)


1. Bankruptcy: Company Quickly Reorganizes Through 'Pre-Pack' Bankruptcy
2. Business: How Greening is Gold for Business
3. Economy: U.S. to China: How About if We Ask You Nicely?
4. Economy: Markets Ignore U.S. Private-Sector Job Cuts
5. Finance: Financial Service Providers Face New Scrutiny
6. Labor: Waiting on H-1B Filing May Leave You Empty-Handed
7. Real Estate: Talented Real Estate Agents Are Still in High Demand
8. Tax Planning: If You Don't File Your Taxes, IRS May File Them for You
9. Tax Planning: How Americans Routinely Overpay Their Taxes
10. Technology: Data Security is Crucial in Today's Businesses
11. Technology: How To Stay Connected with Your Digital Camera
12. Workplace: How to Effectively Deal with Toxic Work Conditions


The Obama administration plans to reverse a long-standing ban on most offshore drilling. The plan will allow oil drilling off Virginia's shorelines, and is being considered for a large chunk of the Atlantic seaboard. At the same time, the plan rejects some new drilling sites that had been planned in Alaska. Following are experts who can comment on whether this plan will help reduce U.S. reliance on foreign oil and create jobs, and the environmental impact:

1. MARK ZUPAN, dean of the Simon Graduate School of Business, UNIVERSITY OF ROCHESTER, is an expert in energy/oil issues: "President Obama's move to lift the ban on offshore oil drilling is a concrete step in the right direction toward decreasing U.S. dependence on foreign oil. Non-renewable energy is still by far the dominant source of our nation's energy. Every president since Eisenhower has called for greater energy independence, yet we have grown progressively more dependent on foreign oil during each of their tenures. Today, over half the oil we use is imported (57 percent). Without government subsidies, alternative energy sources like ethanol, wind and geothermal are still not viable. Real questions remain about whether they are more helpful to the environment. Evidence remains mixed on the extent to which there is global warming. There is a definite question about the possibility of better ways of dealing with any global warming than those proposed by Obama and at the Kyoto/Copenhagen conferences. The estimated cost of cap and trade is $1.5 trillion per year. Much cheaper solutions have been proposed by Nathan Myhrvold of Microsoft (documented in the book "Super Freakonomics"), for example, to rely on chimneys to push sulfur dioxide into the upper atmosphere as an extra shield at a cost of $150 million a year." The university has an on-campus TV studio with satellite uplink through VideoLink in Newton, Mass. To book a satellite shot, call VideoLink at +1-617-340-4100. News Contact: Charla S. Kucko, Phone: +1-585-273-4806 (4/6/10)

2. JOSEPH PETROWSKI, chief of GULF OIL: "I applaud the current efforts to expand domestic oil supplies. This expansion can help eliminate the single choke point that currently makes us vulnerable to the vicissitudes of oil producers and, in turn, other nations." Petrowski is a board member of a number of influential organizations, including the New England Power Pool Board of Review, South Jersey Industries and the Financial Economic Institute of Claremont McKenna College. He has written numerous articles on energy and public policy, regulation and market development, and is a frequent guest on major business news networks. He has testified before Congress and several regulatory agencies on energy and international trade issues. Petrowski is based in Framingham, Mass. News Contact: Robert Minicucci, Phone: +1-603-488-5856 Web site: (4/6/10)

3. LLOYD HEINZE, chairman of the Bob. L. Herd Department of Petroleum Engineering, TEXAS TECH UNIVERSITY, is a drilling and production engineer and an instructor of a graduate course on oil field and the environment and an upcoming course on energy, environment and society: "In order for the U.S. to have sustainable energy self-sufficiency, all avenues of increasing energy production need to be investigated. Offshore U.S. East Coast has not been as actively explored as, for example, the Gulf of Mexico. There should be a large potential for oil and natural gas resource development in this huge area. The oil industry has dramatically improved its environmental efforts and is now able to explore and produce in safe and environmentally friendly methods." News Contact: Leslie Cranford, Phone: +1-806-742-6399, ext. 237 Web site: (4/6/10)

4. SHEL HOROWITZ, lead author of the acclaimed book "Guerrilla Marketing Goes Green: Winning Strategies to Improve Your Profits and Your Planet": "As someone who works at the intersections of business and the environment, I see this announcement as at least the third major sell-out of progressives by the Obama administration on energy issues -- the other two were the watering down of goals for Copenhagen far below what most other participants were working toward, and the idiotic endorsement of nuclear power." Horowitz recently wrote a blog about this topic called "If Obama's Supposed to Be a Liberal, What's a Conservative?": He is based in Hadley, Mass. Horowitz: Phone: +1-413-586-2388 (4/6/10)

5. CHARLES O'HARA, senior counsel of THORP REED & ARMSTRONG, LLP's Corporate Department, based in Pittsburgh, can speak on the legal aspects that may affect Obama's plans for offshore drilling. O'Hara's practice is devoted primarily to oil and gas transactions and corporate transactions. His oil and gas transactional experience includes negotiation of leases, joint operating agreements, drilling program agreements and other instruments used in exploration activities. O'Hara also has extensive experience with regulatory negotiations with agencies such as the Department of Environmental Protection and Public Utilities Commission. News Contact: Leigh Sperun, Phone: +1-610-228-2108 (4/6/10)

6. VALSIN MARMILLION, managing director of AMERICA'S WETLAND FOUNDATION, takes a balanced approach to the development of comprehensive solutions to sustain this vital economic region and the environment on which it depends. He can specifically speak to the importance of expanded and increased sharing of offshore revenues from exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico. Marmillion is based in New Orleans. News Contact: Michael Segner, Phone: +1-202-387-8550 (4/6/10)

7. SIDNEY COFFEE, senior advisor of AMERICA'S WETLAND FOUNDATION, America's Energy Coast Initiative, takes a balanced approach to the development of comprehensive solutions to sustain this vital economic region and the environment on which it depends. She can specifically speak to the importance of expanded and increased sharing of offshore revenues from exploration and production in the Gulf of Mexico. Coffee is based in New Orleans. News Contact: Michael Segner, Phone: +1-202-387-8550 (4/6/10)

8. BRUCE JEFFERIS, global CEO of AON ENERGY, can discuss the potential environmental, energy, and business risks connected to offshore expansion, including government oversight, environmental record of current offshore operators, and the risks and benefits associated with new exploration. Jefferis is based in Houston. News Contact: Cybil Rose, Phone: +1-312-755-3537 (4/6/10)

9. MAURICE GUNDERSON, senior partner, Energy and Materials, CMEA CAPITAL, has extensive knowledge and experience in energy, and can discuss emerging global trends in fuel efficiency, new areas for investment, how alternative energy startups can partner with energy industry incumbents, among other topics. Among CMEA Capital's portfolio companies include CFX Battery, Inc., and A123 Systems. News Contact: Sylvie Tongco, Phone: +1-415-593- 1400 (4/6/10)

1. BANKRUPTCY: COMPANY QUICKLY REORGANIZES THROUGH 'PRE-PACK' BANKRUPTCY. MATTHEW S. COHEN of THOMPSON & KNIGHT recently helped Houston-based energy company Cross Canyon Energy Corp. get its Chapter 11 reorganization confirmed in less than six weeks through the use of a "pre-packaged" bankruptcy plan: "Transactions of this type involving publicly traded securities often take several months or more to go through the bankruptcy process, but after a brief hearing, we were able to obtain confirmation in 42 days after filing the case. Properly managed, pre-packs can be an efficient and cost-effective way to resolve balance sheet issues and help businesses restructure." News Contact: Barry Pound, Phone: +1-800-559-4534 (4/6/10)

2. BUSINESS: HOW GREENING IS GOLD FOR BUSINESS. THAYER STEWART, vice president of marketing and business development for OB10, a global e-invoicing provider: "Global corporations have long dabbled in green initiatives. However, more and more are taking significant measures to reduce paper and increase 'pre-cycling' efforts as a means to streamline operations, save money and reduce carbon footprints. As the 40th anniversary of Earth Day approaches, companies are looking to renew their commitment to going green and leveraging technology, such as e-invoicing, to help spearhead environmental initiatives." Stewart can speak to the ROI stemming from e-invoicing as more companies like HP, Motorola and Mohawk are greening their back-office accounting functions through e-invoicing programs. News Contact: Mousa Ackall, Phone: +1-404-929-0091, ext. 203 (4/6/10)

3. ECONOMY: U.S. TO CHINA: HOW ABOUT IF WE ASK YOU NICELY? JAMES FRISCHLING, president and co-founder at NEWOAK CAPITAL, an asset management, advisory and capital markets platform: "Treasury Secretary Geithner is delaying a report on global currency policies scheduled to be released April 15 to give China more time to move toward a more flexible currency, but will not admit that such is the reason for the delay. Lawrence Summers, director of the White House's National Economic Council, wouldn't use the words 'currency manipulation' on the weekend TV circuit, yet everyone knew that's what he meant. Senator Schumer, along with four other senators, put forward a bill that would require the U.S. to impose tariffs and other penalties on countries that failed to address misaligned currencies. When all this is going on in the face of the single largest foreign holder of U.S. treasuries, you try to get ahead of the curve and ask them nicely, which is exactly what the administration is trying to do. Despite the tough talk from some, the currency problems between China and the U.S. will be best solved through negotiations, not legislation. Given the reliance on one another, any attempts to impose one's will on the other would be a classic example of biting one's nose to spite one's face. We may not like the pace at which changes are going to take place, but asking nicely may still be the only sensible option." News Contact: Marisa D'Vari, (4/6/10)

4. ECONOMY: MARKETS IGNORE U.S. PRIVATE-SECTOR JOB CUTS AND LATCH ON U.S. NON-FARM PAYROLLS. RON D'VARI, CEO and co-founder of NEWOAK CAPITAL, an asset management and advisory firm in New York: "As global markets cheered the 162,000 non-farm payrolls increase, they ignored the 23,000 job cuts by the U.S. private sector in March. Wall Street analysts themselves had expected a turnaround on companies hiring, with an addition of 40,000 this month. If it wasn't because of temporary census employees, the job number would have been viewed as very disappointing. While manufacturing is shedding jobs, the service sector has had two consecutive increases. Nine months after the recession has been declared over, this has been one of the longest jobless recoveries. One would have expected the lower dollar and interest rate would have helped our competitive advantage, lifted U.S. exports, and turned around the private-sector job market." News Contact: Marisa D'Vari, (4/6/10)

5. FINANCE: FINANCIAL SERVICE PROVIDERS FACE NEW SCRUTINY. PAUL CORLEY of the Dallas office of THOMPSON & KNIGHT: "With financial reform a top priority for the Obama administration, the U.S. Senate Banking Committee has approved a legislative package that seeks to address the perceived regulatory failures that led to the financial crisis. The measure includes proposals to improve consumer protection, end 'too big to fail' bailouts and expand federal oversight of the financial sector, including banks, hedge funds and credit rating agencies. The Dodd bill has far-reaching implications for the daily operations at most banks and thrifts. While the Federal Reserve would remain responsible for bank holding companies with assets over $50 billion, many institutions would receive a new primary regulator, such as the FDIC or the Office of Comptroller of the Currency." News Contact: Barry Pound, Phone: +1-800-559-4534 (4/6/10)

6. LABOR: WAITING ON H-1B FILING MAY LEAVE YOU EMPTY-HANDED. IRINA PLUMLEE, Dallas immigration attorney at GARDERE WYNNE SEWELL LLP: "Two years ago, the annual quota of 65,000 H-1B visas was exhausted just a few days after the start of the petition acceptance period. However, the economic downturn slowed down filings so much that last fiscal year's quota was not reached until near the end of 2009. Though economic indicators might not have improved sufficiently to create a fierce competition for the upcoming H-1B visa allocation, it is impossible to predict how quickly the 2010 quota will be filled. In previous years, you knew that if you didn't have the application in on April 1, you would not receive a visa. That's no longer a certainty, but waiting too long to make your bid for an H-1B work permit could leave you without a visa." News Contact: Rhonda Reddick, Phone: +1- 800-559-4534 (4/6/10)

7. REAL ESTATE: TALENTED REAL ESTATE AGENTS ARE STILL IN HIGH DEMAND. LISA JOHNSON SEVAJIAN is an award-winning Realtor who specializes in selling and buying properties in North Andover, Mass. Johnson Sevajian can discuss a great need for hard-working energetic agents: "So many markets are still doing well in this economy and so many Realtors would love to hire more agents for their team. To sell in today's market, it takes perseverance and online savviness. The average age of the first-time Massachusetts homebuyer is 32. These buyers want immediate information; therefore, simply sticking with the traditional real estate approach often fails. A talented agent will combine texting and social media, with many of the traditional real estate approaches. If you can properly manage both approaches, you are the right person to work in this current real estate market." News Contact: Stacey Rudy, Phone: +1-508-450-8405 (4/6/10)

8. TAX PLANNING: IF YOU DON'T FILE YOUR TAXES, THE IRS MAY FILE THEM FOR YOU. BRIAN COMPTON, president of TAX RESOLUTION SERVICES, and tax relief expert in Los Angeles: "Through mid-March, the IRS reportedly received 68.7 million returns, 3 percent fewer than at the same time in 2009. In this economy, many Americans may opt to not file because they don't have the funds to pay the taxes owed. If you're among these people, what you may not know is that the IRS will often file a substitute for return on your behalf if you fail to file your taxes. Additionally, the IRS prepares these substitute for returns in the best interest of the government, resulting in the IRS overstating what taxes you owe and, consequently, what you owe in penalties and interest. So it's important that you file your 2009 tax return, as well as any prior delinquent tax returns, as soon as possible to give yourself a chance to state what you truly owe, which will ultimately save you money and help you avoid significant long-term consequences." Editor's Note: Compton has a profile listed in the ProfNet Experts Database. To view the profile, go to and, after logging in, click on "Search Expert." News Contact: Debbie Edwards, Phone: +1-866-477-7762, ext. 326 Web site: (4/6/10)

9. TAX PLANNING: HOW AMERICANS ROUTINELY OVERPAY THEIR TAXES. JOHN RAY, professor of accounting at STRAYER UNIVERSITY, is available to talk about a variety of taxation topics such as how Americans routinely overpay their taxes and how forgoing the advice of a tax advisor can be costly: "If people have questions about whether to itemize, how to document deductions or whether they qualify for some of the recently created tax breaks for new homebuyers or new car buyers, they should contact a tax advisor. These experts keep up with the latest tax law updates and revisions, and can save taxpayers money that is often lost through simple ignorance." Ray is based in Northern Virginia. News Contact: Dana Haydock, Phone: +1-704-926-1301 (4/6/10)

10. TECHNOLOGY: DATA SECURITY IS CRUCIAL IN TODAY'S BUSINESSES. ANDREW SROKA, CEO of FISCHER INTERNATIONAL, a leading data security provider: "There is no debate that data security is crucial in today's businesses plagued with cyber- security threats. Whether it is a healthcare organization protecting patient data from hackers (while also complying with the HITECH Act) or a financial institution preventing employees from inappropriately accessing classified information, companies of all types and sizes are facing threats from all entry points. Hackers are relentless and generally more innovative than the rest of us. It's a reality you have to come to grips with if you plan to develop a long-term and sustainable strategy for combating cyber-security threats. However, it's a proven fact that most cyber-security threats stem from insiders (i.e., employees). Whether it's the result of human error or deliberate criminal activity, a majority of data security breaches result from one of your own. Across all industries, too many people -- the wrong people -- have access to information that they should never be able to access. It is a privacy breach waiting to happen." Sroka is based in Naples, Fla. News Contact: Rebecca Maas, Phone: +1-212-931-6126 (4/6/10)

11. TECHNOLOGY: HOW TO STAY CONNECTED WITH YOUR DIGITAL CAMERA. DAVID M. STONE, photographer and owner of PHOTOGRAPHIC SOLUTIONS, INC., has some suggestions that can help you stay connected with your digital camera: "Take a photo of your business card or a sheet of paper with your contact information. If your camera is lost and then found, the finder will be able to view your photos and see your contact information. Always remember to leave that image on your memory card. Travel with memory cards that are 2 to 4 GB because you will reduce the chance of losing all of your memories. Many camera users opt to purchase larger memory cards because those cards can store thousands of photos. If you opt for smaller memory cards, you'll only lose partial memories rather than all of them." Stone resides in Buzzards Bay, Mass. News Contact: Stacey Rudy, Phone: +1-508-450-8405 (4/6/10)

12. WORKPLACE: HOW TO EFFECTIVELY DEAL WITH TOXIC WORK CONDITIONS. LINNDA DURRE, psychotherapist, business consultant, and author of "Surviving the Toxic Workplace," can discuss how to directly and effectively deal with toxic co-workers, bosses, and work conditions: "Many people feel helpless and hopeless in confronting problems at work. It's true that this can be frustrating and painful, and in a bad economy, most people don't want to rock the boat. So you have a choice -- keep quiet and put up with it, or say something and remedy it. Whether we're in a flourishing, abundant economy or a recession, good communication skills, assertiveness, and cooperation are crucial." In light of Workplace Conflict Awareness Month (April), Durre provides strategies for initiating direct conversations with toxic co-workers in order to reduce conflict, increase productivity, and avoid changing jobs or encountering potential workplace lawsuits. She is based in Orlando, Fla. News Contact: Julia Baxter, Phone: +1-212-904-3020 (4/6/10)
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PRNewswire -- April 6
Source: ProfNet

NOTE TO EDITORS: The following expert has provided direct contact information: Lloyd Heinze, Texas Tech University Phone: +1-806-742-1801, ext. 236