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VRU Speaker Showcase – Day 1

Order may be different than on the program page…

China’s National Sword’s Impact on the El Cerrito Recycling Center

Laurenteen Brazil
Waste Prevention Specialist, City of El Cerrito

Laurenteen has over 18 years of experience in the recycling industry. The Waste Prevention Specialist at the City of El Cerrito, she provides educational outreach to the community and works directly with businesses for legislative compliance. Over the course of her career she has served on both the NCRA and CRRA Boards. A certified ZWUSA Zero Waste Community Associate, she is an ardent proponent of Zero Waste goals and advocates for lifestyle behavior change. In her spare time, she volunteers to help green a K thru 8 school and her church. She enjoys outdoor activities and aspires continually to be impactful. []

Are Compostable Products Being Composted?

Leslie Lukcas
Executive Director, Zero Waste Sonoma

Leslie has worked over 20 years in solid waste and resource management industry and, prior to this appointment, was the Director of Zero Waste at SCS Engineers a solid waste, recycling and organics management consulting firm for 13 years. She also had her own consulting company for 7 years.

She serves on the board of directors of the National Recycling Coalition and the Zero Waste International Alliance and is an advisor to Zero Waste USA and California Resource Recovery Association. She is the founder of numerous stakeholder groups including the (GIVE) Council, Compost Coalition of Sonoma County, Sonoma County Zero Waste Task Force and the Zero Waste North Bay Symposium. Leslie has spent her career designing and implementing comprehensive sustainability and Zero Waste programs for large institutions, public agencies, venues, and events throughout California and the nation. []

Bringing Reuse Into Food Service Through Policy and Business Innovation

Miriam Gordon
Program Director, Upstream

As Policy Director with UPSTREAM, Miriam is a leading architect and incubator of local and state policies aimed at making the Throw Away culture a thing of the past. Previously, as the California Director of Clean Water Action, Miriam launched ReThink Disposable, a program that has demonstrated that reducing throw away products in food service saves food businesses money and improves customers’ dining experiences. Over the last 20 years, she has been a leading California advocate for policies aimed at reducing plastic pollution and has worked with local, state, and federal agencies implementing pollution prevention and water quality programs. []

Fighting Plastic Pollution: California Legislative Efforts

Genevieve Abedon
Policy Associate, Clean Seas Lobbying Coalition / Ecoconsult

At Ecoconsult, Genevieve represents the Clean Seas Lobbying Coalition, a coalition of non-profit organizations dedicated to source reduction solutions to the plastic pollution crisis. She advocates on their behalf for statewide legislation in the California Legislature and Executive Branch, as well as various processes amongst regulatory agencies. Before joining Ecoconsult in 2017, Genevieve worked on statewide and local plastic pollution policies and campaigns for Californians Against Waste. In the past, she has worked as a Landfill Reduction Technician at various events and sailed across the North Atlantic Ocean studying microplastic pollution with The 5 Gyres Institute. []

Debate: Collecting Low Value Plastics

Topic: California Communities Should No Longer Collect Plastic In Their Curbside Recycling Programs

Head Royce High School Debate Team and NCRA Mentors:

Pro:  Patty Moore, Rebecca Jewell
Con: Martin Bourque, Peter Slote

Recycling Rewards: Recycling Incentive Contest

Derek  Crutchfield  
Recycling Coordinator, City of Vallejo and Board Member, SWANA Gold Rush Chapter

Derek has been in the Solid Waste and Recycling field for approximately 25 years. His career began with an internship with the City of Napa, which eventually led to a part-time position with the City of Fairfield. In 2000 Derek graduated from Sonoma State University with a BA in Environmental  Studies. He eventually went to work for the City of Vallejo where he has been employed for the last 18 years. Derek is currently on the SWANA Gold Rush Chapter Board and the California Product Stewardship Council the Board. Derek is an outgoing and fun loving recycling enthusiast!! []

Reducing and Rescuing Oakland’s Surplus Food

Wanda Redic
Senior Recycling Specialist, City of Oakland and Board Member, California Resource Recovery Association

Wanda began her career in solid waste and recycling in 1994 at the City of Berkeley developing and implementing an ISO 14000 Environmental Management System and commercial and residential food scraps collection service. In 2007 Wanda became a Recycling Specialist in Oakland. She has over 26 years of service in government recycling and organics programs. Wanda currently manages outreach programs, assists with managing franchise agreements, develops and implements programs for compliance with regional and state mandatory recycling and organics laws. Most recently Wanda has lead Oakland’s participation in SB 1383 rulemaking and its implementation including edible food recovery program development. []

SB 1383 Model Tools Overview

Monaliza Noor 
Associate Analyst, HF&H Consultants

Monaliza Noor is an Associate Analyst at HF&H Consultants. She recently assisted with the development of CalRecycle’s SB 1383 implementation tools and case studies. To help jurisdictions plan for SB 1383, Ms. Noor has also helped develop a number of SB 1383-specific tools that identify requirements; delineate which entity (City, hauler, or a third-party) will do what; and, allow for cost-benefit analysis. In addition to her SB 1383 focused work, Ms. Noor also assists in hauler performance reviews, solid waste and recycling contract analysis, and procurement evaluations. Before joining HF&H Consultants in 2018, Ms. Noor worked for the City of Oakland’s environmental services division. In 2016, she earned a Master of Science degree in Environmental Management from the University of San Francisco.

Featured

VRU Speaker Showcase – Day 2

Update on Recycling, Circular Economy, and Embodied Carbon in LEED v4.1

Wes Sullens
LEED and Building Codes Technical Development Director, U.S. Green Building Council

Wes is responsible for the materials credits in LEED and directs organizational activities related to construction waste, product manufacturing, material transparency, circular economy, and embodied carbon. He has worked in the public, private and nonprofit sectors for 20 years on broad topics including energy efficiency, supply chain sustainability, and chemicals transparency. []

What Stormwater and Zero Waste Have in Common

Peter Schultze-Allen
Senior Scientist, EOA, Inc.

Peter provides technical assistance to municipalities around the Bay Area, specializing in the development of policies and practices for: public and private green stormwater infrastructure, Zero Waste, zero litter, complete streets, sustainable landscaping, and urban forestry. His previous experience includes managing the environmental programs for the City of Emeryville and team member of Recology-San Francisco’s Fantastic Three program rollout. He is one of the four authors of the Ecology Center’s initial draft of Berkeley’s Single-Use Foodware and Litter Reduction Ordinance adopted in March 2019. []

How Franchising Impairs Recovery of C&D

Brock Hill
President and Director of Operations, Premier Recycle Company 

Brock is President and Director of Operations for Premier Recycle Company. He started with the company in 2008 and has since led an 80% increase in facility material throughput. As well as serving on the board of Silicon Valley Construction Financial Management Association, Brock serves as the Legislative Committee Chairman and Board of Directors member for the Construction and Demolition Recycling Association. []

John Moore
Law Office of John Douglas Moore

Although not a Zero Waste professional, John is a star in his own profession. He taught in law school when he was 23; won his first case while still in law school at age 24 and in the 39 following years achieved and has been recognized as much as anyone can as a lawyer, including service as a superior court judge. Last year he became one of a select few attorneys admitted to practice before the Supreme Court of the United States, which he will presently discuss. []

Accelerating Trash Detection in the SF Bay Area using Advanced Technology

Dr. Anthony Hale
Program Director for Environment Informatics, San Francisco Estuary Institute  Aquatic Science Center

Tony has advanced the Institute’s communications practices, overseen the development of new data visualization technologies, and partnered with state and federal agencies to address complex data management challenges such as those presented by trash-related pollution. He leads a solid team of innovators who share a common mission to advance our collective knowledge of California’s most pressing environmental concerns. []

Debate: Mixed Waste Processing

Debate Team, Head Royce High School, details pending

Wastepickers: Key Agents for Zero Waste Cities

Magdalena Donoso
Coordinator, GAIA – Latin America and the Caribbean

Magdalena has worked in communications and networking with several Chilean NGOs and in Television Trust for the Environment (UK), supporting educational and activism programs in forestry and biodiversity for 15 years. For the last ten years she has worked on waste issues with cities in Latin America, particularly defending the rights of recyclers and promoting zero waste. She is based in Concepción, Chile. []

I Clean the Streets, Because I’m from the Streets: How to Use Environmentalism as a Vehicle to End Homelessness

Julia Lang
East Bay Director, Downtown Streets Team

Julia is a community builder striving to end homelessness. As a Director at Downtown Streets Team, she is developing transformational communities of unhoused folks who are improving themselves while beautifying their surroundings. Her work is centered on making sure that everyone has a seat at the table, with a sense of belonging, purpose, and place. []

Transforming Wasted Food Recovery In A Small Rural County

Michael Bisch
Executive Director, Yolo Food Bank

Michael has an accomplished background in business management and nonprofit leadership. Following his undergraduate education in Business Administration, he launched a career in international finance. An entrepreneur for the past 20 years, Michael has been the owner for 10 years of Davis Commercial Properties, a commercial real estate brokerage firm. As president of the nonprofit Davis Downtown for four years, Michael acquired a deep knowledge of nonprofit management best practices. At this time of transformation for YFB, Michael’s unique qualifications enable him to guide the organization with a balance of innovation and stability, blending business acumen with a passion to serve. []

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Featured

VRU Program

RECYCLING UPDATE GOES VIRTUAL!
CELEBRATE ST. PATRICK’S DAY IN OCTOBER!

NCRA’s Recycling Update will be held on-line on Monday, October 5 and Tuesday, October 6, from 12-5pm. Two half-days. Registration is $75 for Current Members and $135 for Non-Members. Details

Join NCRA                              Register Today

Speaker Showcase – Day 1
Speaker Showcase – Day 2

PROGRAM

Interactive Topic Lunches, 10-Minute Presentations, Entertaining Breaks and – drum roll, Debates! The debates will be conducted by members of a local high school debate team coached by subject matter experts from both sides of the issue.

Presentations will be from innovators and experts in waste prevention, food rescue, reuse, recycling, composting and Zero Waste.  Join 300 Zero Waste professionals and advocates for networking and small group discussions of current topics.

The program (subject to change) is as follows:

MONDAY, OCTOBER 5
12:00pm Topic Lunch
1:00pm David Krueger
Welcome
Leslie Lukacs Zero Waste Sonoma Are Compostable Products Being Composted?
Laurenteen Brazil City of El Cerrito National Sword’s Impact on the El Cerrito Recycling Center
Genevieve Abedon Clean Seas Lobbying Coalition / Ecoconsult Fighting Plastic Pollution: California Legislative Efforts
Miriam Gordon Upstream Bringing Reuse Into Food Service Through Policy and Business Innovation
2:00pm Break: Entertainment / Activity TBD
2:30pm Debate Team Head Royce High School Collecting Low Value Plastics
3:15pm Break: Entertainment / Activity TBD
Monaliza Noor HF&H Consultants SB 1383 Model Tools Overview
Wanda Redic City of Oakland Reduce and Rescue Oakland’s Surplus Food
Derek Crutchfield City of Vallejo Recycling Rewards: Recycling Incentive Contest
4-5pm+ Virtual Networking
TUESDAY, OCTOBER 6
12:00pm Topic Lunch
1:00pm David Krueger
Welcome
Wes Sullens U.S. Green Building Council Update on Recycling, Circular Economy, and Embodied Carbon in LEED v4.1
Peter Schultze-Allen EOA, Inc. What do Stormwater and Zero Waste have in Common?
Brock Hill & John Moore Premier Recycle Company / Law Office of John Douglas Moore How Franchising Impairs Recovery of C&D
Tony Hale San Francisco Estuary Institute – Aquatic Science Center Accelerating Trash Detection in the SF Bay Area using Advanced Technology
2:00pm Break: Entertainment / Activity
2:30pm Debate Team Head Royce High School Mixed Waste Processing
3:15pm Break: Entertainment / Activity
Magdalena Donoso GAIA – Latin America & the Caribbean Wastepickers: Key Agents for Zero Waste Cities
Julia Lang Downtown Streets Team I Clean the Streets, Because I’m from the Streets: How to Use Environmentalism as a Vehicle to End Homelessness
Michael Bisch Yolo Food Bank Transforming Wasted Food Recovery In A Small Rural County
4-5pm+ Virtual Networking
Featured

NCRA/NRC DEI Webinar Recording

WHO IS AT THE TABLE?

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion
in Waste and Recycling
August 27, 2020

Recording              Speaker Bios

Presented by: The National Recycling Coalition (NRC) and the Northern California Recycling Association (NCRA) in coordination with the NRC Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Council, the NCRA DEI Committee and the Ohio Recycling Coalition. Produced by Portia Sinnott, NCRA Vice President and Zero Waste USA Program Director.

This webinar’s objectives are to motivate the waste and recycling industry to actively explore and discuss DEI issues and initiatives, and inspire individuals and organizations to create their own mandates. We will address the issues via succinct introductory presentations with commentary, hold a robust intra-panel discussion and follow that with a lively Q&A session!

What does Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) mean in the Waste and Recycling Industry?

Are we leading the way or stumbling behind? Does anyone have a handle on the statistics? Has your business, agency or non-profit adopted DEI initiatives? Are they actively being implemented and tracked? Are the benefits clear to all involved? What factors are being addressed – age, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, class, ability, language and/or cultural background? Does your actual workforce reflect these commitments – in front of the house: management/decision makers, as well as the back of the house: workforce/membership? Are there efforts underway to stimulate workforce training and advancement?

PANEL

  • INITIAL SLIDES
  • Moderator and Commentator, Arley Owens, Executive Director, Ohio Recycling Coalition, former NRC Board Member, organizing member of the NRC DEI Council, and former Chair of the NRC Communications Committee and the Minorities Recycling Council
  • DEI Introduction and Industry Situational Report, Sophia Huda, Vice President, Ohio Recycling Coalition, member of the Manhattan Solid Waste Advisory Board and Adjunct Sustainability Professor, The New School, New York SLIDES
  • Developing Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Mandates, Faye Christoforo, Executive Director, Post-Landfill Action Network (PLAN) SLIDES
  • Sustainable And Safe Recycling, Alina Bekkerman, NCRA Board Member and San Francisco Conservation Corps, Program Manager and
    Felisia Castañeda, NCRA Member and Recology San Francisco
    Environmental Learning Center Supervisor SLIDES
  • Moving Forward Together, Abrilla Robinson, Vice President, Ohio Recycling Coalition’s and Chair of the Ohio Recycling Coalition’s newly created Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Council. Past President of the National Recycling Coalition Minorities Recycling Council and organizing member of the new NRC DEI Council.

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Featured

Help Support The Race To Zero Waste!

 

Join the Virtual 5K Walk/Run
to Zero Waste Challenge!
(Or just donate!)

With your generous support, Race to Zero Waste can uphold its mission of “Sustainability in Action.” As we reflect upon our workers, ways to promote Zero Waste initiatives, and how we can better serve our community once social restrictions are lifted, we can acknowledge our past, work in the present, and plan a Zero Waste future for all.

Below are The 3 P’s your support of Race to Zero Waste will create:

  • Providing financial assistance to R20W Workers
  • Promoting accessible Zero Waste education and outreach
  • Pursuing safer, more efficient Zero Waste methods for future events.

We are all in this together and your support will help guide our future into a new and even better normal than the one we left behind. RUN/WALK/BIKE with us in solidarity over solutions that keep us all safe and our planet healthy for generations to come.

 

Once you register you’ll be able to set-up your tracker (Charity Footprints free iOS/Android app or link up your Fitbit), and complete your distance goal anywhere and anytime!

The registration/running fee is $25, and you can sign up as an individual our create your own team to invite friends and family to support you on this challenge.

We’ve got some fun ways to stay engaged, learn about Zero Waste and meet new people virtually of course >:)

SAVE THE DATES:
May 22nd, Live @ 5 pm PDT – Zero Waste Educational Series
May 29th, Live @ 5 pm PDT – Celebration Zero Waste Fest

Zoom Link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81719167159

Featured

Thank you 2020 Recycling Update Sponsors!

THANK YOU TO OUR 2020 RECYCLING UPDATE SPONSORS!

Sponsorship makes low-cost tickets and scholarships for Zero Waste Week events possible!

GOLD: City of Vallejo, StopWasteNapa Recycling & Waste ServicesCity of NapaSan Francisco Department of the EnvironmentHF&H ConsultantsR3 Consulting GroupRethinkWaste, Alameda County Industries, Mt. Diablo Resource Recovery, Toter, City of Fremont

SILVER: Zero Waste Sonoma, Zero Waste Marin, PSSI/Stanford Recycling, SCS Engineers, Marin Sanitary Service, Ecology Center

BRONZE: South San Francisco Scavenger, City of LivermoreRecycleMore, Recyclist, Resource Recovery Coalition of California, City of Sunnyvale, City of Stockton, Cascadia Consulting Group, RecycleSmart, Sure-Close

Generous support from our Sponsors provides scholarships and low-cost tickets to students and those that need financial assistance to attend. If you are interested in Sponsorship, please send us a note via the contact page!

LEVELS OF SPONSORSHIP:
Bronze – $500 = 1 ticket
Silver – $1000 = 2 tickets
Gold – $1500 = 4 tickets

BENEFITS OF SPONSORSHIP:

Ticket(s) to the event based on sponsorship level (as outlined above)

–*Special this year* Discounted registration for the National Zero Waste Conference ($55 discount per ticket)

–Your personalized logo on the NCRA website and program

–Sponsors will be formally thanked on stage

–Sponsor logos will be displayed on the screen during both breaks and lunch

–The larger the sponsorship the larger the logo is for placement

–Sponsorships support discounted tickets for job seekers as well as the students’ scholarships

IMPORTANT – Recycling Update Meeting Preferences Survey

We want to know what you think!

Recycling Update 2021 will be held on October 5. As always, the NCRA Board and RU Committees are working to set up an engaging and informative event.

This year, we want to be particularly sensitive as we navigate the COVID transition. To better serve you, please fill out this short anonymous survey ASAP or before August 15:

Members                  Non-Members

 

 

 

Plastic Free July – What Actions Are You Taking?

Plastic Free July 2021 …
WHAT ACTIONS ARE YOU TAKING…
… to foster sustainable behavior change?
By Bonnie Betts, NCRA Social Media Coordinator

For folks passionate about Zero Waste, recycling and protecting Earth’s delicate ecosystems, Plastic Free July (PFJ) is a time to rally and learn about the movement to break free from plastic. We get to show our network that living without plastic can be done!

The initiative originated in Australia back in 2011, spearheaded by the Plastic Free Foundation. The vision of PFJ is to see a world free of plastic waste. Despite the turmoil and uncertainties of the pandemic, July of 2020 had an estimated 326 million people across the globe who took part in the challenge from 177 countries. Overall, PFJ participants have reduced their household waste by almost 5% per year, and 8.5 out of 10 people have permanently changed their behavior.

The PFJ challenge uses elements of Nudge Theory by Richard Thaler & Cass Sunstein, and Community-Based Social Marketing by Dr. Doug McKenzie-Mohr (CBSM) to intentionally encourage sustainable behavior change. Both are based in social psychology and draw from the idea that sustainable behavior change is most effective when it involves direct contact with people, in their community. Most importantly, this method encourages that the desirable action (i.e. stop using plastic) be met positively, rather than discouraging harmful actions.

The point to having a PFJ challenge is to positively change people’s relationship with plastic in order to make more sustainable choices and ultimately stop the reliance on plastic all together. Here is a quick snap-shot of the social psychology elements at play:

Social Norming – Exemplifying the desired behavior for others to adopt:

This could look like shopping with reusable bags, bringing reusable utensils, containers when dining out, refusing straws and single-use to-go items, refilling your water bottle…

Restaurant owners can display a blurb – on their window, website or ads the percentage of customers who opt out of single-use to-go items (utensils, napkins, straws, etc.).

Social Diffusion – Quickly scale the desired behavior throughout your personal sphere:

Whatever the action is, utilize strength in numbers to get the message out. At the community level – This could look like having neighborhood green teams, compost-food scrap collection collective, Zero Waste champions at work or, local Zero Waste business collectives. Individuals can utilize social media to build awareness and share actions to their immediate networks.

Prompts – Visual or auditory reminders closest to the desired behavior:

In the community we see this most often with visually appealing receptacle signage. Restaurants can include prompts on their ordering menu to forgo single-use to-go items.

Incentives – Reward positive behavior, include promotions, gamify the challenges:

Business initiatives could strategically promote deals that encourage multiple sustainable actions like recycling + composting instead only recycling. Work teams and friends can take part in friendly competitions. Business, and community organizations can offer raffle prizes.

Convenience – Make doing the right thing easier, or the unsustainable action less convenient:

We have seen this with centralized receptacle stations. Green events can make reusables more appealing. Municipalities like the City of Berkeley, include single-use to-go item fees.

When it comes to fostering sustainable behavior change it is important to understand the underlying psychology that perpetuates our decisions.

What actions do I want people to take? What are the barriers? How can I overcome those barriers? These are important questions to ask.

Looking for Plastic Free July Challenge Resources?

Fillgood.co, based in Berkeley, has a great weekly step-by-step challenge and other great examples of what individuals can do in the home and community.

Also, the Berkeley Ecology Center has free stellar resources and events available throughout the month.

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Letters of Support Needed, 7/4/21

By Doug Broms, ZWAC Co-Chair

Posted below are three draft support letters which I propose NCRA support and other groups could reuse:

If there will be sufficient interest, then NCRA support letters also could be drafted for these three other previously proposed Bills:

  • AB 762 Lee D Hazardous emissions: schoolsites: private and charter schools.
  • AB 1311 Wood D Recycling: beverage containers.
    SB 451 Dodd D Beverage container recycling: pilot projects.

Thanks for your timely considering. Enjoy your July 4 fireworks. []

Why Isn’t Everyone Composting Yet? Part 3 – Telling the Story

By Tim Dewey-Mattia, Public Education Manager, Napa Recycling & Waste Services and NCRA Board Member, 4/1/2021

Part 3: Telling the Story        (Part 1)       (Part 2)      (Part 3)

Former NCRA President Arthur R Boone recently posed a question to me via email on “Why the conversion of the yard debris green cart into the full-service organics cart has stumbled badly in getting rolled out? Would love to understand all that resistance better.” Here were my thoughts, which we both thought would be valuable to share with the rest of the NCRA News readers.

In Part 1 and Part 2 of this series, we talked about behavior change and uneven access to programs. For the third and final article, we’ll look at how we can “tell the story” of composting in a more compelling and effective way.

Organics program branding has also been an ongoing problem. Recycling is recycling… but in this case, is it the compost cart, or the organics cart, or the green bin or the yardwaste (+) cart, etc? I think this brings up the larger issue that customers don’t value organics; not like they would an aluminum can or cardboard box, which provides some perception of value because it can be made into a new can or box. There is a solution here – call it one thing. In Napa, we call it the “compost cart” since we make compost from it all, just like the “landfill cart” is the stuff we take to the landfill.

You also need to aggressively educate the community about making compost, and why making compost reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and adds nutrients back into the soil… while also reminding them of the bad stuff that happens when it goes to landfill. I think facility tours (or videos) are key here. Nnot being able to give tours of our composting facility during the pandemic has been a big bummer. There is still a lack of perception of why it’s important to compost – but the reasoning is compelling, so we need to tell the story more powerfully and effectively.

We definitely need more data to figure out exactly where we are – we’ve found it’s really hard to measure participation in curbside organics programs, since if you look in the compost cart the food is often hidden in the yard trimmings. Meanwhile, if you look in the trash, everything is hidden in bags. This is one of my big hopes with SB 1383 – the law requires us to sample all routes, and facility streams, each year. This could give us really powerful data on what is ending up where, and how it progresses over time. Also, while San Francisco and Alameda County have had mandatory programs for a while now, this will be the first time in most places that it will be illegal to put organics (or recyclables) in the trash…up to now, you really only got in trouble if you contaminated your recycling or organics streams.

One silver lining from the pandemic is that we do seem to be seeing more participation in the residential curbside organics collection… but it’s still not where it needs to be. I will say that, as a whole, I’m much more optimistic about organics than recycling at this point… so even with all of these hiccups I think things are generally going in the right direction with organics programs, so there’s that!

Questions or comments? As always feel free to contact me at tim@naparecycling.com… or follow up with a Letter to the Editor or article of your own in the NCRA News!