Commissioners set bid parameters for road agent, discuss COVID-19 preparations

first_imgFARMINGTON – Commissioners approved new bid parameters for the county’s road agent at Tuesday’s meeting, following an executive session.The county employs a road agent to oversee maintenance of county roads in the Unorganized Territory. At Tuesday’s meeting, commissioners heard from three U.T. residents who were critical of road work in the U.T., including the Freeman Ridge Road. Commissioners met with county officials in the Franklin County Courthouse’s courtroom, while other attendees listened in via a teleconferencing system.Bob Carlton, a resident of Freeman Township, said issues included graded roads that continued to have water run down the center, brush left behind after trimming and packed ditches and culverts.“We’re very frustrated about the amount of work done on the county roads,” Carlton said, listing some of the issues. “I just feel like nobody’s paying attention to what’s going on. I think that county dollars are not being spent well.”Bill Gilmore, another Freeman Township resident, said that the dirt Freeman Ridge Road had significant issues, particularly for the first 600 feet. Culverts had rusted-out, Gilmore said, saying they were potentially hazardous for smaller vehicles.Commissioner Terry Brann said that the county had a legal opinion that it was a conflict of interest for a road agent to do the work himself.The commissioners met with Road Agent Jerry Haines in executive session for approximately half an hour. Upon leaving the session, commissioners voted unanimously to pay the road agent $14,000 plus mileage per year starting on July 1; up slightly from the roughly $13,000 he currently makes. That motion also included a series of parameters for what jobs go out to bid: the road agent can make decisions on road work up to $2,500 in cost, while jobs costing between $2,500 and $10,000 will require Haines seek out three quotes. Work costing more than $10,000 will require a formal, advertised bid process, including written specifications, County Clerk Julie Magoon confirmed Wednesday.In the past, commissioners have toured the county’s roads and all three commissioners indicated a preference to conduct such a review later this year.Commissioners also continued discussing how to reopen county facilities, approving the purchase of two special doors designed to limit the public’s contact with county officials. The doors will be installed outside the commissioners’ office and the Probate Court office. Additionally, the county has ordered and received shipments of masks, sanitizer, gloves as well as desk-mounted, transparent shields similar to what grocery stores have been utilizing to limit contact between employees and customers. Franklin County Emergency Management Agency Director Tim Hardy has indicated that federal funds could be used to pay for most of the cost of safety-related improvements.Due to the acoustics of the large courtroom commissioners met in Tuesday, it was at times difficult to follow the meeting through the teleconferencing line. The next commissioner meeting is scheduled for May 12, Magoon said Wednesday; commissioners will review the proposed 2020-21 budget and may have a brief business meeting to handle a few miscellaneous items. Magoon said that meeting would likely take place in the conference room in the commissioners’ office, which has better acoustics.In the longer term, county officials have requested from the state use of the larger courtroom on the first and third Monday of each month. That would provide space for the commissioners to meet in the morning and for probate hearings in the evening, as the actual probate courtroom is a much tighter space. Magoon said that the county requested Mondays as not to interfere with trials that could run from Tuesday through Friday, uninterrupted. Magoon noted that the county’s plans could continue to change as guidelines associated with the COVID-19 pandemic shifted over the course of the summer.Commissioners also unanimously voted to not hold a referendum on expanding the number of commissioners from three to five. That referendum was slated for the November ballot after a bill was passed by the Legislature last summer; Franklin County residents would have voted on whether or not to expand the board.Commissioners Terry Brann of Wilton and Clyde Barker of Strong both said they talked to bill sponsors who were no longer in favor of passing it. Commissioner Charlie Webster of Farmington and other commissioners called the bill an unfunded mandate, as it hadn’t included the estimated $5,000 it would cost to add the question to the November ballot.Magoon said Wednesday that commissioners did have a legal opinion that indicated that it was up to commissioners whether or not the referendum was held.last_img read more

How I hacked the government (it was easier than you may think)

first_img Inside the hacked U.S. election “Most of those websites really just have a text box for your public comments and then a submit button,” he said.In the course of writing the Tech Science paper, Weiss realized that cybersecurity experts have been sounding the alarm on federal website vulnerability for years, but previous transgressions had used relatively unsophisticated substitution methods. “In 2017, there were 22 million comments posted for the FCC proposal to repeal net neutrality,” he recalled. “And it was found that 96 percent of those were part of duplicative campaigns.”Weiss used AI methods to generate a high volume of unique Deepfake comments about a proposed Medicaid waiver. He then wrote a program that automated the submission process, and ran it from a laptop in his dorm room over the course of a few days. He submitted more than 1,000 fake comments that comprised 55 percent of the total submissions and that were found by survey respondents to be indistinguishable from human comments. Afterward, he notified the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services which comments were part of his demonstration to prevent their interference with authentic public comment evaluation.Among the scarier revelations was Weiss’ admission that he was successful without being an expert coder and without special equipment. “I’ve learned to code in the last four years, just through a series of personal projects and summer jobs, and one class,” said Weiss, who has taken some courses in the new program in technology science. “I think one of the very important findings from the study is that someone like me who’s a very novice coder was able to Google his way through hacking the government. Max Weiss ’20 never intended to hack the government. His discovery of how easy it is to do — outlined in a new paper he authored — came of the best of intentions.Weiss, a government concentrator from Cincinnati, was doing advocacy work for state expansion and defense of Medicaid last summer, a project that combined his interests in public policy and health care. While studying the ways in which various advocacy groups can influence pending legislation, he learned how valuable such groups find the federal government’s comment period, when members of the public are invited to weigh in on new or pending legislation via online forms. He realized how easy it would be to manipulate the results using bots — computer programs that generate automated responses — to flood the sites with fake responses for or against any proposal.The 21-year-old detailed his findings in a recent Technology Science piece, “Deepfake Bot Submissions to Federal Public Comment Websites Cannot Be Distinguished from Human Submissions.”“We were spending a lot of time and energy getting high-quality comments from constituents,” said Weiss. “I wanted to make sure these federal agencies understood the potential consequences of their policies, and I had the idea that I could use a bot and submit a lot of fake comments.”He paused, recognizing that corrupting the process was fraught: “This would be bad for democracy.”But the Leverett House resident couldn’t shake the idea, and he began to research the feasibility of such a scheme. Turns out submission is easy to automate. Federal agencies have some leeway to discount comments that are obviously duplicated or irrelevant. But the typical technological defenses against attack, including CAPTCHAS, anomaly detection, and outside verification — all of which are integrated into online activity from banking to email log-in — were pretty much absent. “One of the very important findings from the study is that someone like me who’s a very novice coder was able to Google his way through hacking the government.” — Max Weiss ‘We know’ Russia hacked election Panelists at Kennedy School discuss DNC attacks and wider vulnerabilities Related The Daily Gazette Sign up for daily emails to get the latest Harvard news. In Harvard remarks, Sen. Angus King also says such cyberattacks can happen again An analyst on Russian security issues explains how the U.S. probe likely played out, and where it may yet lead As Americans vote, will hackers pounce? “I’ve always been very interested in public policy,” said Weiss, who also enjoys writing and performing comedy. “Most of my government study has been in health policy or in technology policy or public interest technology, so this was just kind of a synthesis of a lot of different things that I’d learned in the Government Department and just some personal tech projects that I have done in the past.”“Max did groundbreaking work, exactly the kind of real-world-impact work we encourage our students to do” in technology science classes, said Latanya Sweeney, professor of government and technology in residence and director of the Data Privacy Lab at the Institute for Quantitative Social Science, who serves as editor-in-chief of Technology Science. “Thanks to Max’s work, several groups within the federal government are now actively making changes to combat these kinds of vulnerabilities,” she added.last_img read more

Annual turfgrass conference

first_imgThe University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences has laid the framework for its annual turfgrass conference.Set for its 67th year, the Southeastern Turfgrass Conference will be held at the Tifton Campus Conference Center on Tuesday, April 30. The event, which is expected to attract approximately 200 participants, will feature speakers from the University of Georgia, University of Florida and Clemson University. The conference will highlight topics such as nematode management, herbicide resistance and irrigation technologies, as well as new grasses being developed for sports turf, lawn turf and golf turf.“It’s the oldest running turf conference in the South,” said Brian Schwartz, a turfgrass breeder on the Tifton campus. “It started with Dr. (Glenn) Burton, who was a USDA employee here. He was bringing folks in to show them the work he and others were doing. At the time, it was about the only place you could go to learn about turf in the South.” Burton ran the Southeastern Turfgrass Conference for almost 40 years.“Dr. (Wayne) Hanna took over the USDA turfgrass program in Tifton during the mid-1980s. Both he and Dr. Burton had similar goals for the breeding efforts and turfgrass conference, but had different approaches to making them successful. After revitalizing the program, the conference evolved into what it is today,” Schwartz said.The Southeastern Turfgrass Conference is now in the hands of Schwartz at the University of Georgia, who will speak about recent developments with bermudagrass and zoysiagrass hybrids for home lawns, golf courses and sports fields.“In late 2008, Dr. Hanna released TifGrand Bermuda, which is a more shade-tolerant Bermuda. I always like to talk about that one because it was a real breakthrough,” Schwartz said. “It does not need as much sun as the older Bermuda grasses, like Tifway for example, and can be used successfully in landscaping with moderate levels of shade like what’s found under pine trees, but not hardwoods. That’s a cool thing that’s happened in the last five years and it’s really becoming widely available now.”Schwartz’s top priority since arriving at UGA four years ago is finding turfgrasses that are very drought tolerant. In the largest part of the UGA-Tifton farm where initial screening is conducted, in order for a new hybrid to be selected, it has to exhibit some level of drought tolerance, according to Schwartz. He added that a new drought-tolerant Bermuda that has been discovered will be discussed at the conference.“It seems to need quite a bit less water in addition to just being tougher,” said Schwartz about the Bermuda hybrid. “It usually does not look quite as good as the best Bermuda grass with high levels of management, like TifGrand or TifWay or TifSport. If you give them a lot of input, they look like a million dollars. “But DT-1, although it can look pretty good with management, when you reduce the water and fertilizer, DT-1’s value becomes more evident.”Other featured topics and speakers include an update on turfgrass insect pests given by UGA entomologist Will Hudson and issues in urban agriculture presented by UGA entomologist Kris Braman. A tour of the Turfgrass Research plots on the Tifton campus will also be given.Those interested in attending can still register at http://www.ugatiftonconference.org/documents/Turfgrass2013.pdf. Cost to attend is $100 if registered before April 22nd, or $125 afterwards.last_img read more

Want to grow? Fire someone!

first_imgOkay, that sounds a bit harsh, but there’s some truth to it. In every organization, business, bank, or credit union, there is someone (or a group of someones) hindering success. Why? Spin the wheel and pick a reason.Often when we are onsite with a client assessing their marketing, we find somebody who is a roadblock to success. There are various reasons. Don’t just look for a generational villain. Search for the one who is not pulling their load. Spotlight your front line. Inspect your corner offices.Assessing team members isn’t always a function of marketing, but it should be. Think of every dollar you spend on promotions. Then consider the level of frustration you have when it doesn’t turn into desired loan growth or deposit improvement. The first finger is always pointed at marketing, but should it be? continue reading » 17SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi rubbishes summer exit rumours

first_img Metro Sport ReporterThursday 23 May 2019 2:52 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link3.1kShares Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi rubbishes summer exit rumours Advertisement Advertisement Saint-Etienne defender is on Arsenal’s transfer shortlist (Picture: Getty)Charlie Nicholas believes Mustafi should shown the exit door this summer with Arsenal’s defence in need of a major overhaul ahead of the 2019/20 campaign.‘We need a whole new backline,’ Nicholas told Sky Sports. ‘I am disappointed that Petr Cech is retiring. I would have encouraged them to give him another year.‘Bernd Leno has got mistakes in him and would have benefited from Cech giving him a helping hand.More: FootballBruno Fernandes responds to Man Utd bust-up rumours with Ole Gunnar SolskjaerNew Manchester United signing Facundo Pellistri responds to Edinson Cavani praiseArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira moves‘We are looking for four defenders, so on top of the crazy situation of letting Aaron Ramsey go for nothing, it is not great. They need two centre-backs and two full-backs.‘Hector Bellerin will come back and play right-back, as Ainsley Maitland-Niles could be pushed on potentially. Sokratis and Sead Kolasinac are good to have as squad players.‘Nacho Monreal and Laurent Koscielny are getting on a bit now. Shkodran Mustafi must be released in my opinion.‘Konstantinos Mavropanos and Rob Holding are still to come back when they are fit.’MORE: Man United considering move for out-of-contract PSG star Adrien Rabiot Comment Shkodran Mustafi has been linked with a move away from Arsenal this summer (Picture: Getty)Shkodran Mustafi has rubbished rumours that he could be set for a move away from Arsenal.Though Mustafi, 27, has been a mainstay in Unai Emery’s side this season, making 31 starts in the Premier League, a number of costly errors have cast serious doubt over the defender’s future.Arsenal are reportedly listening to offers of around £20 million for Mustafi this summer despite the German joining for a fee of £35m from Valencia just three years ago.AC Milan chief executive Ivan Gazidis, formerly of Arsenal, is interested in luring Mustafi to the San Siro with talks said to be underway over a summer move.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENTMore: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man CityKostas Manolas, Mario Hermoso, William Saliba and Djene Dakonam have all been linked as potential replacements for Mustafi, but the centre-back has no plans to leave Arsenal in the coming months.‘It is odd that there are always transfer speculations,’ Mustafi told German outlet Kicker. ‘I am an Arsenal player and have a contract until 2021.’last_img read more

Bespoke home is Brisbane’s craftiest

first_imgIs this the best bath in Brisbane? The home has its own elevator.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus23 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market23 hours agoPart of the climate-controlled wine cellar.But by far the standout features are the water features on each level of the home, led by the top level’s master bedroom suite which has a lounge as well as a raised ensuite platform with a bath almost too pretty to disturb. The black bath tub is a standalone one which sits “surrounded by greenery and retractable windows”. 33 Elizabeth Street, Paddington, Qld 4064THIS bespoke inner city home has taken craftsmanship to a whole new level — and still managed to fit in three stunning water features on a 405sq m block. The four bedroom, three bathroom, double carport home at 33 Elizabeth Street, Paddington, in Brisbane is bursting with luxury features. On the list is an elevator, recycled West Australian Karri timber flooring and cabinetry, Whistler Basalt stone brought in from Canada, vaulted ceilings, a climate-controlled wine cellar, fully kitted out bar, smart electronics, integrated media, Sonos and speakers in every room, soundproof theatre room, solar electricity and ducted airconditioning. The chef’s kitchen has Smeg appliances and three ovens. The large bar has show-off shelving, lighting, two drink fridges and a wine fridge. The rooftop deck has a smoker grill. The fish window looking over the stairwell lets in a lot of light. The lap pool runs beside a closed in gym area and leads out to a kiddie playground.It upped the serenity factor with an aquarium in the wall above the stairwell — an inspired feature that also lets light through.The bottom level has an undercover heated lap pool running the length of the home, with a gym area beside it that could double as entertainment space if necessary.Agents Ben Wakely and Clinton Moore of Urban Property Agents Paddington were marketing the home for sale by private treaty. The media room is sound proof.“Rarely is a home offered to the market with such dedication to meticulous workmanship, and the incorporation of unique and sensational natural materials,” their listing said.“This architecturally designed, inspirational home celebrates the owner’s desire to build a luxurious home with outstanding detail.” [email protected]last_img read more

Price slashed for Alan Bond’s ‘ultimate waterfront escape’

first_imgAlan Bond’s old sprawling estate in Dalkeith, WA, is on the market for $43m — $7m less than its previous asking price. Pictures: Realestate.com.auA luxury home built by disgraced businessman Alan Bond — and given a $7m pricecut — comes with a 12-seater swim-up bar, a 21-seater cinema and 10,000 bottle wine cellar.The controversial figure, who was jailed for corporate fraud after declaring bankruptcy in 1992 with $1.8b in debts, touched many facets of Australian life including leading Australia’s first ever America’s Cup win.He had a massive fall from grace having crossed state boundaries to create Bond University in Queensland, be president of Richmond Football Club in Victoria and control Castlemaine Tooheys brewery in New South Wales. Alan Bond, Richmond Football Club president, addressing the club’s annual meeting in 1987.Mr Bond also left behind a stunning real estate legacy when he died in 2015 via a jawdropping home described as “Australia’s ultimate waterfront estate”.The 0.64 hectare property has 14 bathrooms, and parking for a dozen cars and is unlike any six bedroom home in Australia.It’s huge, with 2,930 sqm of internal living space over four levels, with the 6,406 sqm block made up of six titles of land, according to a listing by agent Willy Porteous of William Porteous Properties International.More from newsParks and wildlife the new lust-haves post coronavirus14 hours agoNoosa’s best beachfront penthouse is about to hit the market14 hours ago The home has been on the market for over a year. Picture: Realestate.com.au Former Australian prime minister Bob Hawke (R) shares a joke with Australia II skipper John Bertrand (L) and yacht owner Alan Bond (C) at a luncheon to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the first America’s Cup win by a boat representing a country other than the United States, in Sydney on September 26, 2013. Picture: AFP Photo/William West. Stunning use of marble across the foyer. Picture: Realestate.com.auMore like a commercial resort than a home, it also has a full gymnasium, massage and shower room, full size professional squash court, floodlit tennis court and a commercial-size laundry and drying room. A boat launch and boat storage space was also on site, with the gardens also packed with water features and ponds.“The extensive grounds has all the attributes of a luxury hotel, with the ability to transform from a secluded and private retreat into a fully equipped venue for the grandest of functions,” according to the listing.Recent sales in Dalkeith, WA, where the property is located, range from $1.83m for a three bedder in November to $4.46m for a five bedder in September last year, according to realestate.com.au.The property is for sale by private treaty. The home has a teppanyaki house as well as pizza, and barbecues, plus two kitchens. Picture: Realestate.com.au Video Player is loading.Play VideoPlayNext playlist itemMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:51Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:51 Playback Rate1xChaptersChaptersDescriptionsdescriptions off, selectedCaptionscaptions settings, opens captions settings dialogcaptions off, selectedQuality Levels720p720pHD576p576p432p432p270p270pAutoA, selectedAudio Tracken (Main), selectedFullscreenThis is a modal window.Beginning of dialog window. Escape will cancel and close the window.TextColorWhiteBlackRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyOpaqueSemi-TransparentTransparentWindowColorBlackWhiteRedGreenBlueYellowMagentaCyanTransparencyTransparentSemi-TransparentOpaqueFont Size50%75%100%125%150%175%200%300%400%Text Edge StyleNoneRaisedDepressedUniformDropshadowFont FamilyProportional Sans-SerifMonospace Sans-SerifProportional SerifMonospace SerifCasualScriptSmall CapsReset restore all settings to the default valuesDoneClose Modal DialogEnd of dialog window.This is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.Close Modal DialogThis is a modal window. This modal can be closed by pressing the Escape key or activating the close button.PlayMuteCurrent Time 0:00/Duration 0:00Loaded: 0%Stream Type LIVESeek to live, currently playing liveLIVERemaining Time -0:00 Playback Rate1xFullscreenStarting your hunt for a dream home00:51 FOLLOW SOPHIE FOSTER ON FACEBOOK The property has a tennis court and squash court. Picture: Realestate.com.au The crew of Australia II celebrate on board after winning the America’s Cup in the final race of the series, at Newport, Rhode Island, September 26, 1983. The Australia II was owned and built by a syndicate of Western Australians headed by Alan Bond. Picture: Leo Mason/Popperfoto/Getty Images). MORE: Big shake-up in our most expensive suburbs The property, which was snapped up in 2011 for $38m, has a resort-style pool described as “one of the largest private pools in Australia”. That’s also where the 12 seater swim-up bar is plus a spa.It also has a ball room that can handle over 400 guests, two fully equipped caterers kitchens and a walk-in fridge.The home has a separate house for pizza, teppanyaki and barbecues and a large fully fitted commercial bar and games room. MORE: The house you can build in three hours MORE: Frank Sinatra’s desert retreat done his way The landscaped gardens has water features and ponds. Picture: Realestate.com.aulast_img read more

Honduras bank to expand ‘green’ loans

first_img 79 Views   no discussions Share Sharing is caring! LifestyleMoney Honduras bank to expand ‘green’ loans by: – July 29, 2011 Tweetcenter_img Logo of the Inter-American Bank. Photo credit: smartcampaign.orgWASHINGTON, USA — The Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has announced the approval of a $30 million green line facility for Banco Atlántida of Honduras to support its loans to environmentally sustainable projects. The medium-term financing facility consists of a $20 million senior A loan from the IDB and a senior B loan to be syndicated by the IDB, targeted at $10 million.Banco Atlántida is in the process of developing a “green” portfolio of loans directed at small and medium-size corporate borrowers that will cover a number of eligible sectors, including renewable energies, energy efficiency and biofuels, among others.“The IDB looks forward to enhancing its support to Honduras through this new green line as we advance in our efforts to serve key economic sectors for our development strategy,” said Daniela Carrera-Marquis, chief of the IDB’s Financial Markets Division. “In addition to generating important environmental benefits, this investment will increase the availability of much needed medium- and long-term funding for local small and mid-size corporates, key drivers of employment generation in Honduras.”The growth of a long-term sustainable lending portfolio in Banco Atlántida will contribute to the marketability of a business line that can scale up sustainable investments while demonstrating its environmental and commercial attractiveness. “Financial institutions can be important agents of positive change due to their ability to identify and leverage new sustainable initiatives,” said IDB project team leader Gema Pérez.As part of the financing, the IDB will support Banco Atlántida in the development of green line eligibility criteria to determine the process for identifying, selecting, and monitoring green projects.“We are pleased to partner with the IDB and work together to achieve a positive impact in the Honduran competitive environment, promoting a more sustainable economy and investments with a strong economic base,” said Banco Atlántida Executive President Guillermo Bueso Anduray.Caribbean News Now Share Sharelast_img read more

Anderson stays perfect at Osky

first_imgBy Jeremy FoxOSKALOOSA, Iowa (May 31) – Shannon Anderson remained perfect by picking up the KBOE Radio/Mahaska Bottling IMCA Hobby Stock feature during a fast-paced night of racing Wednes­day at Southern Iowa Speedway.Anderson started eighth and quickly worked his way through the field, getting to the front on lap six.He built up a big lead that was erased by a lap 11 caution, but held on to get the victory ahead of Aaron Martin, Chanse Hollatz, Bill Bonnett and Thomas Stevens.Hobby Stocks see extra an $300 available to grab because of a bounty placed on Anderson next week, thanks to Edel Lawn Care, Cindy Drost and Independent Auto.Cayden Carter and Curtis VanDerWal repeated wins from last week in the Musco Lighting IMCA Modified and Oskaloosa True Value IMCA Northern SportMod divisions, respectively.Derrick Agee was the Budweiser IMCA Stock Car winner and Brandon Housley checked out on everybody to win the Kelli Steli State Farm IMCA Sport Compact main event.30last_img read more

Walters pleased about McCarthy move

first_img “He was delighted to get the move,” said Walters. “I’m an Everton fan as well, so I am delighted for him. “He’s going to a great club and he’s got friends there with Seamus (Coleman) as well, going to a manager he knows and who trusts him, so it’s a great move for him.” It proved an eventful end to the transfer window for another member of the Ireland squad, with Shane Long dashing back across the Irish Sea but failing to tie up a move to Hull, much to the disappointment of potential new club-mates Paul McShane and Robbie Brady. However, Walters is confident the collapse of Long’s proposed transfer will not distract him from his preparations for Friday night’s World Cup qualifier against Sweden. He said: “I think a lot of West Brom fans would have been unhappy if he had gone. “The Hull lads are a bit gutted they didn’t get him, but he’s at West Brom and he’s had a really good couple of years there and I don’t expect any different from him next year.” With the transfer window now closed, Walters, McCarthy, Long and the remaining members of Trapattoni’s squad have turned their attention towards a key double-header against the Swedes and Austria which is likely to determine the destiny of their qualifying hopes. The three teams are currently level in joint-second place on 11 points behind Group C leaders Germany, and defeat in either game could prove disastrous. No-one was more delighted than Jon Walters when Ireland team-mate James McCarthy completed his deadline day move to Everton. But the memories of a disappointing Euro 2012 finals campaign, which saw Ireland fail to claim a single point from their three group matches, is fuelling their efforts to make a swift return to the big stage. Walters said: “After the disappointment of the Euros, being there and being so disappointed to go out like we did, you want to get straight back into it. “Once you have a taste of it, you want to get back in, so everyone is determined to get to Brazil. “We are all really hungry for these two games and they are going to define where we are going to end up in the group, so they are exciting games to play in. “You go into every game trying to win. Obviously, the emphasis is on us because we are at home in the first game against Sweden. “But after that result, whatever it may be, you take each game as it comes, so we will see where we stand after that game and going into the last few games. “It would be nice to get two wins, and that’s what we will probably be aiming for, but we will see where we are after the game.” Trapattoni has on more than one occasion fielded Walters in a wide midfield position and it is a role he could be asked to fill once again on Friday night with Aiden McGeady missing through injury. The 29-year-old freely admits he would prefer a more orthodox position, but is happy to answer his manager’s call whenever it comes. He said: “I have always said I prefer to play up front as a striker, but in the past few years I have played as a wider man, whether it be right or left. “But wherever you are called upon, you do your best and in the past few years, I have been okay playing out there, so it’s nothing new to me.” The 22-year-old midfielder finally met up with his international colleagues on Tuesday morning after being given permission by manager Giovanni Trapattoni to stay behind to tie up his move to Goodison Park. And McCarthy received a particularly warm welcome from Merseyside-born Stoke striker Walters. Press Associationlast_img read more