“Voting rates among young adults fell to 38.0 percent in 2012 from 44.3 percent in 2008 following increases in two consecutive presidential elections (2008 and 2004), according to a new U.S. Census Bureau report on age and voting patterns released today. These statistics come from Young Adult Voting: An Analysis of Presidential Elections, 1964-2012, which uses data collected by the Current Population Survey. The report provides a detailed 50-year historical portrait of voters with a specific focus on young adults. In every U.S. presidential election from 1964 on, 18- to 24-year-olds voted at lower rates than all other age groups. In contrast, Americans 65 and older have voted at higher rates than all other age groups since the 1996 election. ”The young-adult voting gap closed somewhat from 2000 to 2008 but opened up a bit again in 2012,” said Thom File, a sociologist in the Census Bureau’s Social, Economic and Housing Statistics Division. “Age-based voting patterns are not set in stone. For example as recently as 1992, the nation’s oldest voters did not vote at a level higher than all other age groups…In addition to the report, the Census Bureau released an interactive Voting Report that provides comparisons of voting and registration patterns by demographic, social and geographic characteristics for the U.S. and states.”

 

“Sustainable health care is a work in progress. While virtually everyone recognizes the need for the industry to reduce its considerable impact on the environment, sustainability is rarely a high priority among decision makers at U.S. hospitals. There is so much short-term uncertainty and financial pressure in the industry today that it’s hard for many administrators and supply chain managers to focus on what seem to be secondary, long-term issues. However, according to Practice Greenhealth, a nonprofit focused on environmental solutions for the health care sector, sustainability doesn’t have to cost more. A 2012 study sponsored by Health Care Without Harm and the Healthier Hospitals Initiative projected that savings from green initiatives could exceed $5.4 billion over five years, and $15 billion over 10 years. Hospitals, for instance, run energy bills of $1 million to $3 million annually, and the low-hanging fruit to cut costs is plentiful and readily available today. What’s more, many green strategies — from healthier food in American hospitals to greener buildings that can reduce the toxic chemical load at U.S. health care facilities — have profound benefits for patients.”

 

New GAO Reports – Collision Aftermarket Technologies, HUD Rental Assistance, SBA

April 24, 2014

TRANSPORTATION: Federal Vehicle Collisions and Aftermarket Collision Avoidance Technologies, GAO-14-408R: Published: Apr 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 24, 2014. HUD RENTAL ASSISTANCE DEMONSTRATION: Information on Initial Conversions to Project-Based Vouchers, GAO-14-402: Published: Apr 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 24, 2014.  SMALL BUSINESS RESEARCH PROGRAMS: Agencies Did Not Consistently Comply with Spending and Reporting Requirements, GAO-14-567T: Published: Apr 24, 2014. Publicly Released: Apr 24, 2014.

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CFPB – Mortgage closings today

April 24, 2014

A preliminary look at the role of technology in improving the closing process for consumers, April 2014 “The mortgage closing process is complex and often onerous for all involved. For most consumers, closing a mortgage signifies the most substantial financial transaction they will complete in their lifetimes. However, the process can be time-consuming and confusing. Consumers face a daunting […]

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Existing-Home Sales Remain Soft in March

April 24, 2014

News release: “Existing-home sales were essentially flat in March, while the growth in home prices moderated, according to the National Association of Realtors®. Sales gains in the Northeast and Midwest were offset by declines in the West and South. Total existing-home sales, which are completed transactions that include single-family homes, townhomes, condominiums and co-ops, slipped 0.2 percent to a […]

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Senate panel report on allegations of Homeland Security IG misconduct

April 24, 2014

Via WaPo – “Report from an oversight panel of the Senate Homeland Security and Government Operations Committee finds that Charles K. Edwards, the former senior watchdog for the Department of Homeland Security, altered and delayed investigations at the request of senior administration officials, compromising his independent role as an inspector general. Read the related story.“

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A User’s Guide to the Fiscal Year 2015 Defense Budget

April 24, 2014

“The U.S. Department of Defense’s fiscal year 2015 budget request outlines a sound path to responsibly meet the risks and challenges of the current national security environment. The plan also proposes a number of smart, targeted reductions to defense spending that will maintain U.S. military capabilities and the All-Volunteer Force while helping return the country […]

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Estimates of illegal and unreported fish in seafood imports to the USA

April 23, 2014

“Illegal and unreported catches represented 20–32% by weight of wild-caught seafood imported to the USA in 2011, as determined from robust estimates, including uncertainty, of illegal and unreported fishing activities in the source countries. These illegal imports are valued at between $1.3 and $2.1 billion, out of a total of $16.5 billion for the 2.3 […]

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New Website Helps Vets Manage Benefits, Apply for Loans

April 23, 2014

“eBenefits is a portal; a central location for Veterans, Service Members, and their families to research, find, access, and, in time, manage their benefits and personal information. eBenefits offers: A personalized workspace called My Dashboard that provides quick access to eBenefits tools. Using eBenefits tools, you can complete various tasks. You can apply for benefits, download […]

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Go back in time with Street View

April 23, 2014

Google Official Blog: “If you’ve ever dreamt of being a time traveler like Doc Brown, now’s your chance. Starting today, you can travel to the past to see how a place has changed over the years by exploring Street View imagery in Google Maps for desktop. We’ve gathered historical imagery from past Street View collections dating back to […]

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Research Focuses on effective use of color in data visualization

April 23, 2014

The Right Colors Make Data Easier To Read by Sharon Lin and Jeffrey Heer “Artists and designers regularly use semantically resonant colors in their work. And in the research we conducted with Julie Fortuna, Chinmay Kulkarni, and Maureen Stone, we found they can be remarkably important to data visualization.”

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Visualizing Health Policy: A Snapshot of US Global Health Funding

April 23, 2014

Kaiser Family Foundation: “This month’s Visualizing Health Policy infographic shows global health funding’s share of the US federal budget, the flattening of US funds for global health during the 21st century, where US dollars for global health are spent, the major areas receiving US global health funding, and how the US public overestimates the percentage of the […]

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