Greek PM seeks EU support for tough austerity plan

Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou makes statements after a meeting with Greek President Karolos Papoulias in Athens March …

Greece’s cabinet approved a sweeping new austerity program on Wednesday, the third in as many months, intended to rein in a bulging budget deficit and secure European financial support.

A government spokesman said the package of public sector pay cuts and tax increases would save an extra 4.8 billion euros ($6.5 billion), equivalent to 2 percent of gross domestic product.

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“We are now justifiably expecting EU solidarity,” Prime Minister George Papandreou said in a televised conversation with President Karolos Papoulias, adding that the additional steps were necessary for the country’s survival. [Read the full article]

Van Ness Feldman is pleased to announce that Vincenzo Franco, formerly an associate with the firm, has been elected a member (partner) of the firm.

Mr. Franco resides in the firms Washington, DC office, where his practice focuses on electric power and renewable energy technologies. He represents electric utilities, independent power producers, power and gas marketers, financial institutions, and investors on transactional, regulatory, compliance, and litigation matters involving the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the North American Reliability Corporation.

Mr. [Read the full article]

The European Union will more tightly regulate the economies of its 27 members to safeguard the stability of nations using the euro currency and fend off threats like Greece’s debt crisis, the commission president said Wednesday.

EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said the new measures would generate warnings if one country was heading off track, which might have flagged Greece’s soaring debt problem at an earlier stage.

“The European Union appears ready for stronger economic coordination and stronger economic governance,” he told reporters.

“The financial crisis has highlighted our interdependence, the fiscal crisis in some of our member states has highlighted the consequences some mistakes made in one country may have on other countries. It’s much clearer now, the need to act together,” Barroso said. [Read the full article]

Wyoming faces the likelihood of a grasshopper outbreak this summer, which would strain the ability of landowners, county districts and governments to pay for combating the destructive insects, pest control officials said Tuesday.

Weed and pest control districts at the county and state level, as well as federal agencies, are preparing for a busy summer of treating the grasshoppers. They outlined the potential problem in a briefing to the Legislature’s Joint Agriculture, Public Lands and Water Resources Committee.

Grasshoppers are a valuable food source for many prairie animals, including sage grouse chicks, but an overabundance is problematic because the insects feed on the same vegetation as livestock and other wildlife. Last summer’s outbreak hurt hay production and prompted some Wyoming ranchers to downsize their herds. [Read the full article]

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