Sun, May 03, 2015 - Page 3 News List

Taiwan News Quick Take

Staff writer, with CNA

NATURE

Firefly peak approaching

Places nationwide are set for peak firefly activity this month as the insects breed, local governments said. In New Taipei City, the season could continue into early June, according to the city’s Agricultural Department, which has listed 48 hot spots for watching the beetles, including the Yuanshan hiking trail in the Sansia District (三峽), the Pingsi District (平溪) and the Emerald Pond in the Sijhih District (汐止). The Namasia District (那瑪夏) in Kaohsiung has also recorded increasing firefly activity. The district has designated firefly-watching trails in Takanua, Maya and Nangisalu villages, adding that the best time to spot the creatures is between 7pm and 8:30pm. Traditional firefly-watching areas, including Sun Moon Lake and the nearby Puli (埔里) area in Nantou County, are also encouraging the public to take part in their annual firefly festivals. In Taichung, government-backed firefly-watching are to take place in the Dongshi (東勢), Dakeng (大坑) and Sinshe (新社) districts.

POLITICS

Medical parole extended

Former president Chen Shui-bian’s (陳水扁) medical parole has been extended by three months, officials said on Friday. Chen, who was convicted of corruption and is serving a 20-year sentence, is to be allowed to receive medical treatment outside of prison until Aug. 4, officials said. Friday’s extension was the second that Chen has received. He received a three-month extension in early February.

POLITICS

Campaign budget set: DPP

The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) has approved a budget of NT$200 million (US$6.5 million) for its presidential and legislative election campaigns next year, DPP spokesperson Cheng Yun-peng (鄭運鵬) said. The DPP’s campaign budget is bigger than in previous elections because it is anticipating more votes, which means it will be eligible to receive a bigger government subsidy for campaign funding, Cheng said. The NT$200 million is to be mainly used to run the party’s headquarters, Cheng said. He said DPP candidates would be responsible for funding their own campaign offices. The presidential and legislative elections are in January next year. Regulations stipulate that presidential and vice presidential candidates may establish accounts for political donations beginning on May 20. The DPP will continue its efforts to attract funding from smaller donors, Cheng said.

SPORTS

Hualien river race date set

An annual triathlon along the nation’s east coast, which features river rafting instead of the usual swimming segment, is to be run on June 21. The Xiuguluan River Rafting Triathlon, now in its sixth year, is part of celebrations of the summer solstice, with the nation being one of 16 that the Tropic of Cancer passes through, tourism officials said. The race includes 11km of rafting on the Xiuguluan River (秀姑巒溪) in Hualien County followed by a 12.6km run and a 44km cycling section, the East Coast National Scenic Area Administration said. Registrations, which run through May 24, already include about 20 athletes from five countries, it said. Speaking at a promotional event on Thursday, guest runners Erica Reinhold and Bastiaan Bruell said the fact that the race introduces river rafting to replace swimming could be less physically demanding for beginners. For more information about the event, visit xgl-triathlon.ncom.tw.

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