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11:35:13 am

Finance Chairman Set To Take Helm Of Nh Senate

Finance Minister Michael Noonan wrote to the Bank of First Financial Ireland, AIB and Permanent TSB in the wake of the Anglo Tapes scandal , asking them to preserve any tapes or files that may be needed. The Ministers letter to bank bosses asked them to hold onto material from the years preceding the September 2008 guarantee and dating from after it, as he said it may all be relevant. While AIB and Permanent TSBs responses, obtained by TV3s Brian ODonovan under the Freedom of Information Act, made it clear that the institutions would preserve all relevant files, the reply from Bank of Ireland contained a number of qualifiers: the Bank will take all such steps as we reasonably can to retain and maintain records believed to be within the remit of the anticipated inquiry. The Finance Committee is set to hear from the CEOs of all three institutions and from Ulster Bank management over the next three days, beginning with AIBs David Duffy this afternoon. BoI boss Richie Boucher is up tomorrow, and committee Chairman Ciaran Lynch says he will be asking the Chief Executive for more detail on how they intend to preserve the material. Whilst the responses from other banks were clear, the one from Bank of Ireland was measured at best and reserved at worst, indicating a reluctance, Lynch told Whilst the predominant issue this week will be will be the banks offering sustainable solutions to homeowners, the matter of the Bank of Ireland response will also be an issue. Lynch said the meetings this week would provide the committee with a chance to examine lenders responses to the mortgage crisis in detail, particularly mortgage arrears and the target, that by the end of June 2013, banks should have proposed sustainable mortgage solutions for 20% of distressed borrowers. When the banks were last before us, there were no specific targets in place to provide solutions for homeowners in arrears. Those targets are now in place and, more specifically, we will consider how the individual banks are meeting their targets and ensuring that there is a consistency of approach in dealing with distressed borrowers. This afternoons AIB session begins at 2pm, and can be viewed online at .

Amadou Ba, general director of taxes and state property in the West African nation, will replace Amadou Kane as finance minister, Maxime Ndiaye, secretary-general in the presidency, told reporters yesterday in the capital, Dakar. Sidiki Kaba, a former president of the International Federation for Human Rights , replaces Aminata Toure as justice minister after she was appointed Senegals second female prime minister on Sept. 1. We want our fellow citizens to feel that their living conditions have improved, Toure told reporters after the new appointments were announced. Senegals $14.3 billion economy is forecast to grow 4.3 percent this year and 5.1 percent in 2014, according to the African Development Bank . The country plans to sell $500 million of 10-year international bonds later this year, the International Monetary Fund said in June. Standard and Poors has a B+ rating on Senegalese debt, which is four levels below investment grade and on par with Zambia and Albania. Ba, the incoming finance minister, helped boost total tax collection to 500 billion CFA francs ($1.8 billion) in 2012, while customs revenue grew to 502 billion CFA francs. Sall also removed Youssou NDour, a Grammy Award-winning singer, as the countrys tourism minister, while Budget Minister Abdoulaye Daouda Diallo was moved to the Interior Ministry. Makhtar Cisse, the general director of customs, was appointed deputy minister in charge of the budget. Sall, who became president in April 2012, last changed his cabinet in October, when he appointed new foreign and interior ministers.

(AP) New Hampshire's next Senate president calls himself a "numbers guy" with good reason. Salem Republican Chuck Morse has chaired the chamber's powerful Senate Finance Committee three of his four terms. A fiscal conservative, he was responsible this year for writing the chamber's version of the $10.7 billion state budget that doesn't rely on tax or fee increases. Once lawmakers agree on what department heads can spend running their agencies, the 52-year-old nursery owner doesn't believe in micromanaging them. Then it is up to them and the governor to live within the budget, he reasons. Morse will assume the Senate presidency Tuesday when Peter Bragdon relinquishes control amid criticism for taking a new job as executive director of the Local Government Center . Morse won the unanimous support of GOP senators last week, assuring him of the majority needed to replace Bragdon, of Milford. Morse said he admires how smoothly the Senate operated under Bragdon. He said he's also reaching out to past Senate presidents for tips on how to manage the 24-member chamber. "There's no text book on how to run the Senate presidency," he said. He doesn't expect to make many changes but wants to talk to people after Tuesday's vote about issues including whether New Hampshire should expand Medicaid to an estimated 49,000 poor adults and where to find revenue for highway improvements.

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