Posts Tagged ‘California Public Utilities Commission’

(415) (628) (650): San Francisco Will Soon Have _Three_ Different Area Codes – Plus, 10-Digit Dialing is Already Here for Some Of Us

Thursday, July 31st, 2014

[UPDATE: I almost forgot – there’s going to be a 628 test number to call:

“A test number has been established to enable business customers to verify that their equipment can complete calls to the new area code.  The test number, (628) 628-1628, will be available beginning Dec. 21 and will be in operation through April 21, 2015.”]

Gentle Reader, do you remember when the East Bay used the 415 area code? Well, I do. The switchover to the nickel-and-dime occurred back in 1991. And in a small way, it divided the East Bay from the West Bay, just how Elaine Benes felt isolated from 212 Manhattan by the 646 area code overlay back in the day.

Well, get ready for some more changes, ’cause the new 628 overlay means that you’ll be dialing the 415 area code even from the 415 – this is called ten-digit dialing.

Anyway, here’s the news – ten-digit dialing has arrived already. By that, I mean that I can no longer dial my 415 land line with my T-Mobile 415 cell phone without first punching in the area code. This change occurred a few weeks back. Welcome to The Future. [But apparently, seven digit dialing is still working for some or most of the rest of San Francisco - see the Comments section. They'll be phasing things in, optionally at first, and then mandatorily.]

Of course we could have handled things differently, but the small-minded people of our Small Business Commission wanted to do things this way, because, you know, business!

Let’s see, what else? Oh, yeah, for some reason, some people in SF have 650 area codes, like down in Ingleside Heights:

So, SF will soon have three area codes for just 46-something square miles. What a country!*

Anyway, enjoy:

In closing:

“No, it’s just like 212 except they multiplied every number by 3… and added 1 to the middle number.”

*In Soviet Russia, phone dial you!

Oh No, the “628″ Area Code Coming to SF in Just Nine Short Months and the CA CPUC Wants Us to Start Preparing Now!

Monday, June 16th, 2014

OMG, the gov’mint is messing with our good old 415 area code, starting in just two months. The era of ten- or eleven-digit dialing is upon us.

The horror, the horror:

“CPUC Offers Reminder Of New Dialing Procedure For Consumers With 415 Area Code

SAN FRANCISCO, June 16, 2014 –The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) today reminded residential and business customers served by the 415 area code that they need to prepare for the introduction of the new 628 area code overlay. The 628 area code will be added, or overlaid, to the 415 regions to ensure businesses and consumers have access to telephone numbers from their wireline and wireless carrier of choice.

With the 415/628 area code overlay, customers must dial “1″ plus the three-digit area code for all calls to and from telephone numbers with the 415 and 628 area codes. Customers may begin to use this new dialing procedure on August 16, 2014, when consumers and businesses with a 415 area code telephone number may begin dialing 1 + area code + seven digit telephone number when making all local calls. The new dialing procedure will become mandatory for all residential and business consumers on February 21, 2015. On March 21, 2015, the new 628 area code may be assigned to those who request a new telephone number or an additional telephone line, as well as any available numbers in the 415 area code.

Residents and businesses with telephone numbers within the 415 area code will retain their current telephone number(s) and area code. Consumers requesting new or additional telephone numbers (or telecommunications services) may be assigned telephone numbers with either the new 628 area code or the original 415 area code, depending on available telephone number inventory. Consumers will still be able to dial three digits to reach 911, 211, 311, 411, 511, 611, 711, and 811.

To prepare for the area code overlay, residents and businesses in the 415 region should:

–  Begin dialing 1 + area code + telephone number for all calls. [NO, I REFUSE!]

–  Notify alarm service providers. [ALL RIGHT, GOOD IDEA, CPUC]

–  Reprogram equipment or features including automatic dialers, speed-dialing, call forwarding, modems for computer or Internet dial-up access, etc. [NO, I REFUSE!]

–  Advise family, friends, and business contacts to dial 1 + area code + telephone number for all calls. [AS IF, CPUC. NO, I REFUSE!]

–  Ensure that security door and gate systems are reprogrammed to dial 1 + area code + telephone number.  [ALL RIGHT, GOOD IDEA, CPUC]

–  Test telephone equipment to determine if it can dial and receive 1 + area code + telephone number. Questions regarding changes in telephone equipment should be directed to telephone equipment vendors. [NO, I REFUSE!]

–  Update items such as stationary, checks, business cards, advertisements, promotional items, brochures, Internet web pages, and catalogs to reflect the 1 + area code + telephone number change. [NO, I REFUSE!]   

California and other states have successfully implemented approximately 60 area code overlays throughout the U.S. to meet the continual growing demand for more telephone numbers.

For more information, consumers and businesses should contact their telephone service provider or visit:www.cpuc.ca.gov/areacode415.

For more information on the CPUC, please visit www.cpuc.ca.gov.

SOURCE  California Public Utilities Commission

California Public Utilities Commission”

Dennis Herrera Throws Down: Acts to Sue CPUC and Feds Over Failure to Enforce Gas Pipeline Safety Standards

Thursday, July 14th, 2011

City Attorney Dennis Herrera is all over last year’s gas transmission explosion in San Bruno.

All the deets.

The first of a series of photos of the San Bruno aftermath from photographer David Yu

Just released:

Herrera moves to sue CPUC, feds for failing to enforce gas pipeline safety standards

Revelations from San Bruno tragedy lead San Francisco to seek federal court order compelling regulators to strictly enforce U.S. safety standards

SAN FRANCISCO (July 14, 2011) — City Attorney Dennis Herrera has taken the first step toward suing the California Public Utilities Commission and federal regulators for their failure to reasonably enforce federal gas pipeline safety standards as required by the Pipeline Safety Act. The notice of intent to sue Herrera delivered late today is a legally-required precursor to civil litigation by San Francisco, which will seek a federal court order to compel the CPUC and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration to enforce federal pipeline safety standards in an effective manner.

Herrera’s move comes in the wake of increasingly troubling revelations in news accounts and last month’s sharply critical report by an independent review panel investigating the deadly explosion of a PG&E gas transmission line in San Bruno, Calif. on Sept. 9, 2010, which resulted in the loss of eight lives and the destruction of 38 homes. That investigation report concluded that CPUC’s “culture serves as an impediment to effective regulation,” and went on to fault regulators who “did not have the resources to monitor PG&E’s performance in pipeline integrity management adequately or the organizational focus that would have elevated concerns about PG&E’s performance in a meaningful way.” The City Attorney’s Office will file its comments on that investigation report with the CPUC tomorrow.

Continued after the jump

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PG&E and Salvation Army Announce TEAF Hardship Program to Pay Your Utility Bill – Act Before September 21

Friday, August 20th, 2010

If you qualify for PG&E’s Temporary Energy Assistance for Families program and you apply in time, you can get your gas and electric bill paid courtesy of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act - that’s the news of the day.

I’ll note that this joint will get pro-rated if you have non U.S. Citizens in your household only applies to households made up of 100% American citizens. So, if anybody in your crew is a resident alien or is document-challenged, then no TEAF for you. The skivvy:

“Multinational households may still be eligible for program benefits at a pro-rated amount. Customers who have at least one U.S. citizen residing in the home are encouraged to complete the application.”

All the deets:

“PG&E Sponsors New Energy Assistance Program for Customers in Need

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 20 — Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) today announced a new energy assistance program designed to help families in need.

The initiative, known as Temporary Energy Assistance for Families (TEAF), is a one-time payment program sponsored by PG&E and administered by The Salvation Army. This program, authorized by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and funded through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), along with PG&E customers, will provide up to $1,500 to income-qualified families who are unable to pay for their energy needs due to an unplanned hardship.

“We know that in today’s difficult economic times, some of our customers may need extra help with their bills,” said Albert F. Torres, vice president of customer operations at PG&E. “We believe this new program provides the perfect opportunity to give our customers additional support during their time of need.”

Customers interested in the program are encouraged to contact The Salvation Army for program details and eligibility guidelines, or they can apply at 1-800-933-9677. They can also visit www.pge.com/TEAF. Applications for assistance will be accepted until September 21, 2010.

In addition to the TEAF program, PG&E offers a host of other programs to assist customers. PG&E’s Breathe Easy Solutions(TM) help customers manage their energy costs when life brings financial challenges or unexpected changes. Additional details, as well as eligibility requirements and enrollment instructions, can be found at: http://www.pge.com/myhome/customerservice/financialassistance/.

Temporary Energy Assistance for Families (TEAF)

TEAF

We can help with your energy bill. You may be eligible for a one-time bill payment up to $1,500.

At PG&E, we are dedicated to assisting customers through numerous programs and community outreach projects. We’ll help you manage your energy costs, which can be helpful when there are financial challenges or unexpected changes in your situation. Together, we can find solutions.

Temporary Energy Assistance for Families (TEAF) is a one-time payment program sponsored by PG&E and administered by The Salvation Army. This program, authorized by the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and made possible with partial funding through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA), helps income-qualified families who are unable to pay for their energy needs due to an unplanned hardship. Federal rules apply in determining eligibility in this financial assistance. Applications will be handled on a first-come, first-serve basis until program funds are depleted or until September 21, 2010.

NOTE: If you have received a 48-hour shut off notice, please call The Salvation Army at 1-800-933-9677

Program Guidelines

  1. The PG&E bill must be in your name.
  2. You must be a parent, guardian, or non-custodial parent of a child under 18 years old.
  3. You must provide copies of the following documents:
    • Your current PG&E bill with a past due amount.
    • Your current photo identification card.
    • Documents* verifying U.S. legal citizenship for each member in your household.
    • Documents** verifying that your total household income meets the income guidelines below.

*Examples of U.S. citizenship documentation: U.S. birth certificate, U.S. Certificate of Naturalization, or U.S. passport (first two inside pages).

**Examples of income documentation: Paycheck stubs; an unemployment insurance benefit award letter or check stub; proof of public assistance (i.e. CalWORKs); Supplemental Security Income (SSI) award letter or check stub; State Disability Insurance (SDI) award letter or check stub; current bank statement showing income deposits; or copy of your 2009 federal income tax return.

Income Eligibility Chart 

Number of persons in Household Annual Income
1 $21,660
2 $29,140
3 $36,620
4 $44,100
5 $51,580
6 $59,060
For each additional person, add: $7,480

Application

The federal government has established program guidelines and PG&E customers who meet these guidelines may be eligible. If you meet the requirements, download an application and mail it to the address below.

TEAF application (PDF, 1.1 MB) (English and Spanish)

All applications are being reviewed by The Salvation Army. Once your application has been processed, The Salvation Army will notify you with a confirmation letter. Mail your application with all documentation to:

The Salvation Army
TEAF Program
P.O. Box 193465
San Francisco, CA 94119-3465
Tel. 1-800-933-9677

We encourage you to share this information with relatives, friends, or neighbors who may also qualify. Together, we can find solutions.

California NUMMI Commission Offers Toyota No Carrots and No Sticks

Tuesday, March 9th, 2010

Here’s the thing about that NUMMI plant in Fremont that’s closing down at the end of the month – Toyota thought about making Prius hybrid electric cars there after the departure of General Motors, but then rejected that idea. So, Corolla production will  be taken care of by an existing plant in Ontario, Canada and pickup trucks, too, will be made somewhere else if necessary. This all got worked out last summer.  

(Here’s Toyota’s current take on the situation from NUMMI spinmeister Lance Tomasu for the record. Enjoy.)

Anyway right now, California’s Toyota NUMMI Commission is coming back from Japan after trying to nag Toyota brass into keeping the Fremont factory going. Take a look at their report. The Question of the Day is why Toyota should remain the only car manufacturer in the entire western United States.

So you’d think that California would offer some carrots and/or wave some sticks around at Toyota but the Commission’s not really equipped to do that all that much.

It’s not like they can’t find some carrots or sticks in their quiver, it’s that their quiver is pretty much empty.

According to the commission, the chance for Toyota to build hybrid electric Corollas in Fremont is somehow some big benefit to Toyota that Toyota is oblivious to. That’s not really a carrot, actually, and you’d think that Toyota would have their own ideas about making cars. Would consumers want to buy a “California Corolla” just because it’s made in Fremont? I don’t think so. Very possibly, Toyota having a big pickem-up factory in Texas helps sell big V8 pickem-ups, but the average Californian would prefer a Made In Japan label, it would seem.   

Another carrot the commission could dangle would be the synergy from making cars in the same state as tiny, troubled Tesla Motors. That’s not really a carrot either, huh?

Well, how about some sticks instead? What will happen to Toyota if it shuts down its money-losing plant in Fremont? Nothing, it would seem. One might suppose that quiet diplomacy would have been used on Toyota last year, to no avail.

Back in the day, down in Fremont:

   

via CanadaGood

Now, let’s read up on the news of the past weekend. Has Toyota really “lost its way?” No. Let’s see here, did Toyota make a mistake with how it handled the floor mat / plastic gas pedal parts / ?????? / issues? Yes, but that’s just a hiccup in the sands of time.

Is Toyota’s decision to discontinue production in California without GM as a partner “suicidal?” No. 

And is the success of the Prius model due to “enthusiastic Californians” or is it due to Toyota spending billions to develop the technology and then selling them at a loss for years and years? You Make The Call.  

And are the people of Mississippi looking forward to making hybrid vehicles for Toyota in a brand-new factory that’s going unused right now? Yes. Toyota decided last year to make Priuseses in Blue Springs, Mississippi instead of California. That’s California’s loss, no argument about that.

All right, here’s entire conclusion of the Blue Ribbon Commission’s report, in bold.

“The collaborative efforts of Californians, which have bolstered NUMMI’s success, are ongoing.”

Was NUMMI a success, really? Didn’t it lose money every year for the past quarter century? Yes.

“A ‘Red Team’ of state, local government, private sector and other officials have proposed significant tax and business incentives to retain the plant.”

Presumably, Toyota knows about this, but is not interested.

 “Closing NUMMI now is a decision of choice, not necessity.”

This is true. If Toyota were really afraid of the consequences of closing down NUMMI then maybe they’d run it at a loss, if necessary, forever.

“Closure abandons a loyal, highly-skilled workforce and places a heavy burden on communities and the state when they can least afford it. The decision is inconsistent with the values that have led Toyota to unparalleled economic success. It elevates narrow, short-term corporate interests above the interests of workers, the public and the long-term interests of Toyota itself.

Don’t really get this. Why should Toyota have a plant in California instead of some other state or nearby country?  

 “Looking at the pending NUMMI plant shutdown, and then you look at larger problems that Toyota is having in America” Richard Holober, from the Consumer Federation of California, told the NUMMI Blue Ribbon Commission.

Well, Toyota’s “having problems in America” primarily due to a decision to save a few pennies by using a plastic-on-plastic device to make holding your foot on the gas pedal a bit easier AND not reacting quickly enough to incident reports. This issue will get solved.

“I can’t help but conclude that this is not an isolated plant closure decision, but a symptom of a much, much deeper problem with what has happened to Toyota as a corporation.”

What has “happened to Toyota as a corporation” is that it’s become the best car company in the world. This was true last year, it’s true this year, it’ll be true next year.

“Akio Toyoda, the Toyota president whose grandfather founded the automaker in 1937, admitted at a February 24 Congressional hearing, “recently we haven’t lived up to the standards you’ve come to expect from us or that we expect from ourselves.” He also stated that one of the automaker’s great strengths was facing its mistakes and addressing them. The decision to close NUMMI reflects the period when the automaker pursued a hyper-expansion and abandoned its values in the interest of narrow, short-term financial goals.

“Hyper-expansion” = Making Popular Cars. “Narrow, short-term financial goals” = GM. Now, Toyota changed a bit after getting listed on the stock exchange in New Yawk, and Toyota has more hide-bound corporate culture than it probably needs but it’s doing all right overall.

“Toyota, however, has risen to outstanding heights by building its success precisely on strong core values. These included: 1) building only the highest quality vehicles; 2) customer safety first; 3) lifetime job security for its workers; 4) caring partnerships with communities; 5) concern for the environment. A very visible first step toward returning to this successful corporate ethic would be to keep NUMMI open, and show California and the world that the company has reached into its heritage to define its future.

I don’t know, Toyota participated in NUMMI during a time when there was a threat of massive tariffs being applied to cars imported from Japan. The 1981-1994 Voluntary Export Restraint plan of that era was a disaster for American consumers (and, speaking of “narrow, short-term financial goals,” the long-term health of the American automobile industry.) Something like the threat of massive tariffs on Toyota products would be a nice stick for the NUMMI Commission to wave about, but, for whatever reason, Toyota doesn’t seemed to be all that worried about that issue. 

“This is the moment for political leaders in Washington and Sacramento to address the closure. Millions of Californians are hurting in the worst job market in seven decades and are deeply apprehensive about the future. The most immediate, direct, and cost effective jobs program available is to keep NUMMI running.

There’s no question that keeping NUMMI running would benefit California. The question is why Toyota should lose money to finance an American stimulus plan?

“This stimulus plan delivers 25,000 jobs and could save $2.3 billion. The automaker and California would reap a triple bottom-line benefit: Toyota would restore its image and retain a world-class plant; workers and their families would make it through a dark economic winter; and California would get further down the road to economic growth and a green future.

O.K., the Blue Ribbon Commission is traveling home from Nagoya, Japan now.

Perhaps the their trip to Toyota City will prove useful even if the NUMMI factory shuts down on sked this month.

We’ll just have to wait and see what the Commission got.

State Treasurer Bill Lockyer Realistic About NUMMI Commission, Report Due March 3rd

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

Our State Treasurer certainly seems realistic about the chances of getting Toyota to take over the Toyota/GM NUMMI plant in Fremont, CA, so that’s a good thing. Bill just wants to do all that he can before giving up.

Bill Lockyer introducing commission members at the initial meeting in the CPUC Building on Van Ness yesterday:

Click to expand

Here are some new deets, below. Let’s wait and see what they come up with…

“Toyota’s Proposed Plant Shutdown to Be Scrutinized by Panel of California Leaders

Blue Ribbon Commission holds public hearing, will issue findings next Wednesday on economic, social, environmental costs of automaker’s proposal to close award-winning NUMMI plant in Fremont

SAN FRANCISCO, Feb. 24 — A 10-member panel of California leaders convened by State Treasurer Bill Lockyer held a public hearing in San Francisco today to gather facts and take testimony from a broad range of experts on the expected impact of Toyota’s planned shutdown of New United Motor Manufacturing, Inc. – or NUMMI – auto plant in Fremont. The plant has consistently won top ratings from J.D. Powers and is widely regarded as a model for the auto industry.

A shutdown of NUMMI would be the largest mass layoff in the current recession, and the prospect of having to endure the loss of potentially tens of thousands more jobs in the plant itself and related industries has spurred broad concern throughout the state. The Blue Ribbon Commission has been charged with both collecting the facts on the impact of closing NUMMI and examining alternatives for keeping the plant in operation.

Lockyer explained, “Californians are deeply concerned about how the loss of this plant might affect their economy, their state and their lives, and it is the job of this Commission to help find the answers to those questions. It is a testament to the quality of leaders on this panel that they have been more than willing to take up this challenge. I have asked the panel, and they have agreed, to gather and assess the facts and to have a report on my desk by next Wednesday morning so that I can share it with the public at noon.”

Acclaimed actor Danny Glover, who serves on the Commission, echoed those sentiments when he said, “California leaders – religious, civic, labor, and business – have come together on this Commission to determine for ourselves if the closing of Toyota’s California plant is necessary, to assess the severity of the impact that would follow such a closing, and, if possible, to explore strategies that might make it possible to avoid a shutdown. It is an honor to have been asked to serve my state in this serious and important matter.”

Some economic experts have projected that Toyota’s impending NUMMI shutdown could cost the state – already one of the hardest-hit by unemployment during this recession – as many as 50,000 more jobs. That figure includes the more than 5,000 now employed at the plant itself and an estimated 50,000 more in related industries up and down the state. In anticipation of the closure, some companies that supply the plant with parts and material have already announced layoff plans.

Concerns about the impact of the shutdown do not end with its economic consequences, however. The membership of the Commission reflects the breadth of issues that have fueled the growing alarm over Toyota’s plan to abandon auto manufacturing in California. The members of the Commission are:

 –  Professor Harley Shaiken, UC Berkeley
 –  Bob Wasserman, Mayor of Fremont
 –  Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow, Presbyterian Church USA
 –  Victor Uno, Chairman, Port of Oakland
 –  Richard Holober, Executive Director, Consumer Federation of California
 –  Bruce Kern, Executive Director, East Bay Economic Development Alliance
 –  Carl Pope, President, Sierra Club
 –  Nina Moore, Fremont Chamber of Commerce
 –  Art Pulaski, Chief Officer, California Labor Federation
 –  Danny Glover, Actor.

 
Another Commission member, the Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow, who is the head of the Presbyterian Church USA and of a San Francisco Bay area congregation, said, “This Commission has a moral duty to serve our community and state to sort out the facts, to assess the implications of those facts, and to search for solutions that will best serve the needs of Californians and their families.”

Source: California Labor Federation”

Danny Glover’s Going to Travel to Toyota City, Japan to Keep Our NUMMI Plant Open?

Tuesday, February 23rd, 2010

Let’s see here, California Treasurer Bill Lockyer juststarted a commission to keep Fremont’s NUMMI auto plant running past April, 2010? This commission, meeting for the first time tomorrow in San Francisco, will soon be going on the road, it appears:

“The treasurer’s office said commission members will go to Japan and report directly to Toyota officials.”

Ready or not, Toyota, here we come.*   

A NUMMI representative parading on the Streets of San Francisco, during happier times a few years back:

The commission members:

UC Berkeley professor Harley Shaiken (chairman)
Fremont Mayor Bob Wasserman
Presbyterian Church USA’s Rev. Bruce Reyes-Chow
Port of Oakland Commission Chairman Victor Uno
Fremont Chamber of Commerce member Nina Moore
Consumer Federation of California Executive Director Richard Holober
East Bay Economic Development Alliance Executive Director Bruce Kern
Sierra Club of America President Carl Pope
Art Pulaski, Chief Officer, California Federation of Labor
Danny Glover, Actor

Look forward to reading Mr. Danny Glover’s Twitteringabout going 200 per on the Tokaido Shinkansen bullet train when he’s on his way to Nagoya.

Does it make sense to build cars in the bay area anymore?** Would the bay area buy the products of the NUMMI plant in the future? We’ll see.

*Down with the landing gear/ up goes the useless prayer.

**The shut-down dealership in Oakland that the Chron’s op-ed fretted about, that deal had more to do with the health of Nissan than Toyota, actually. Anyway, the place just got reopened – called One Toyota of Oakland it is.  

Senator Leland Yee Leads the Fight Against Mandatory Phone Books

Thursday, October 29th, 2009

Phone books – they’re useless, right? What are they good for? Absolutely nothing. I’ll say it again. Hooot! Absolutely nothing.

So let’s hear it for Dr. Leland Yee, Ph.D, Assistant Senate President pro Tempore Extraordinaire, the fightingest Senator in California, as he takes on the Telephone Book Industry on behalf of The People.

A brief wait on the doorstep for a few days until someone puts all these things into the recycling:

photo_121908_002-copy

Your days are numbered, you mandatory telephone books.

Read all about it:

San Mateo County Leaders and Environmental Advocates Call for Consumer Choice on White Pages
Yee and Papan: Mandatory delivery of white pages wastes paper, energy, and scarce local government resources

 
SACRAMENTO – Following the successful efforts of Cleveland, Ohio and Miami, Florida, California could become the largest jurisdiction to give telephone customers a choice in receiving the white pages directory.  Today, Senator Leland Yee (D-San Francisco/San Mateo) and Millbrae Councilwoman Gina Papan announced they will pursue state legislation to prohibit telephone companies from delivering the white pages unless the customer opts-in to receiving it. 
 
“The requirement that phone companies must deliver the white pages comes from an era before the internet and other means of obtaining phone numbers,” said Yee.  “At a time when Californians are looking for ways to reduce our carbon footprint, we should give them that choice, particularly when very few customers still use the white pages.”
 
“Ending the unnecessary distribution of the white pages is a step forward that we can take at the local level to address the global issue of climate change.  I am proud to take the lead on this issue to help save the environment and reduce local recycling costs,” said Millbrae City Councilmember Gina Papan.  “I would like to thank Senator Yee for his responsiveness in taking on this important legislation on our behalf.”  

All the deets, after the jump

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