■ Politics KMT to focus on election \n \nChinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Policy Committee Convener Tseng Yung-chuan (曾永權) yesterday announced six proposed bills that the KMT caucus will focus on in the upcoming provisional legislative session. Among the proposed draft bills were establishing an investigation committee to probe the March 19 shooting the president and vice president, assembling a committee to probe the activation of the national security mechanism which was launched following the March 19 shooting and amendment of the Constitution. Additionally, the KMT will focus on draft bills concerning the organization of the Central Election Commission (CEC), the proposed national communication council (NCC) and the Law Governing Legislators' Exercise of Power (立法院職權行使法), said Tseng, who made the report during the Central Standing Committee's weekly meeting yesterday. \n \n■ Society \nFirefighters pick coconuts \n \nFirefighters in Chiayi were faced with a special assignment yesterday when they were summoned to a school to help pick coconuts to prevent them from falling and hitting pedestrians. There are more than a dozen coconut trees on the campus of the Peishing Junior High School and school authorities noted that because falling coconuts have in the past damaged vehicles parked under the trees, they were worried that a similar event could result in injuries to people. Ho Min-ping (侯閔評), a fire squad leader, said that he and his colleagues are used to dealing with swarms of wasps and having to catch snakes, but never thought they would be required to pick coconuts. Ho said that the firefighters used the mission as a chance to sharpen their skills in operating their fire truck and harvested more than 100 coconuts in the process. \n \n■ Animal rights \nSeminars planned \n \nYoung animal rights activists across the country will get a chance to meet each other and discuss animal protection strategies beginning Sept. 9 thanks to the efforts of the student group Dogs Obligate Guardians (DOG). The seminar next month will mark the first in a series of discussions targeted at animal-friendly youths aged 18 to 30. The series aims to increase awareness among younger Taiwanese about animal rights and interaction among animal rights activists, with a focus on Taiwan's stray-dog problem, said group members. \n \n■ Bureaucracy \nSalary hike considered \n \nThe Executive Yuan will decide by Aug. 12 whether to raise the salaries of military personnel, civil servants and teachers, the head of the Central Personnel Administration (CPA) said yesterday. CPA Director-General Lee Yi-yang (李逸洋) said that a screening committee for the salary hikes will meet in a few days to discuss the issue. The committee will take into consideration economic growth, price index changes, per capita income growth and changes in the private sector in making its evaluation, Lee said. Executive Yuan Spokesman Chen Chi-mai (陳其邁) said that the CPA has estimated that a 3 percent salary hike for the nation's 600,000 military personnel, civil servants and teachers will increase government expenditure by NT$18 billion (US$530.97 million). The last such salary hike was in 2001.
Food delivery provider Foodpanda had 564 consumer disputes from January to last month and failed to attend many mediation sessions with local governments nationwide, the Executive Yuan’s Consumer Protection Committee said. In a news release earlier this month, the committee said that it investigated consumer complaints and mediations for Foodpanda and rival Uber Eats during the period, when the number of delivery orders jumped due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Uber Eats had 80 consumer disputes, the committee said. Of Foodpanda’s consumer disputes, 368 resulted from delivery drivers canceling orders after customers could not be reached, 108 were related to the quality or quantity
PILLAGING PENGHU: A 7,539-tonne Chinese ship found mining sand in the Formosa Banks area was escorted by several CGA ships to a Kaohsiung harbor The Coast Guard Administration (CGA) yesterday announced that it had dispatched ships to intercept Chinese dredging vessels operating in the nation’s territorial waters near Penghu and detained 10 crew members, who were transported to Kaohsiung. A coast guard patrol discovered more than 20 dredging vessels in an area known as the Formosa Banks, 46 nautical miles (85km) southwest of Penghu County’s Cimei islet (七美) at about 5am on Wednesday. The agency responded by dispatching two patrol boats, the 3,000-tonne Kaohsiung and the 500-tonne Penghu, along with two frigates, to intercept the Chinese vessels, while an airborne observation unit was used to monitor
‘HONEYMOON’ IS OVER: A political science professor said that the Tsai administration’s popularity peaked after it successfully contained COVID-19, but is waning President Tsai Ing-wen’s (蔡英文) and Premier Su Tseng-chang’s (蘇貞昌) approval ratings fell significantly this month in the wake of the government’s handling of the distribution of relief funds and stimulus coupons to people and businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, a poll released yesterday by the New Power Party (NPP) showed. The poll showed that 68 percent of respondents said they were satisfied with Tsai’s performance, down 8.9 percentage points from last month, while 21 percent said they disapproved of her performance. Her approval among respondents aged 20 to 29 fell 14.7 percentage points, the largest decrease when compared with other age
Passengers arriving at Taoyuan International Airport will find that most entrances to both terminals have been sealed off as part of its COVID-19 prevention efforts. Follow the signs and directions posted on the doors to find the nearest entry point. The airport has installed infrared cameras and thermometer guns at all open entrances, and all persons with a temperature of over 37.5 degrees Celsius are prohibited from entering the terminal. In addition, staff will take the temperature of those checking in to their flights in advance at Airport MRT stations A1 and A3. In accordance with the Centers of Disease