Imran Khan has tendered his resignation as a Director of the National Communications Network (NCN) Inc over the appointment of the media entity’s new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Lennox Cornette.Khan’s resignation was submitted to Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo on Tuesday, the same day Cornette reported for duty.His decision to part ways with the State media company comes after a majority of the NCN Board rejected his call to rescind the appointment of Cornette, who had admitted to forging the signature of late Guyana Telephone and Telegraph (GT&T) Manager, Terry Holder, while he worked at that Company.NCN Board Member Imran KhanIn a statement, Khan said he could not associate his name with such an appointment.“I, therefore, am of the conviction that continuing as a Director is untenable. Regrettably, I view the decision of the Board to proceed with the appointment in light of the available information as reckless and imprudent,” he stated.Last week, Khan wrote the Prime Minister requesting the appointment of the Chairman of the NCN Board, Bish Panday be revoked over the decision to appoint Cornette.Panday then wrote to the Prime Minister and declared that Khan was unqualified to judge his competence.During an interview with Guyana Times, Panday had explained that the NCN Board of Directors unanimously agreed to Cornette’s appointment during a meeting on April 7.However, later in the evening, Khan had raised concerns regarding the appointment of Cornette.Panday explained that the “concern” was investigated, the findings were brought up for discussion and thereafter, all but one member gave approval for Cornette to be appointed the new NCN CEO.“One objected and the others agreed; I can’t go with the one that objected. He objected after the event, he did not object before the man was appointed and if one Director objected and seven Directors said ‘yes’, I can’t go with the one who objected,” Panday explained.Notably, Khan is said to have recommended that veteran broadcast journalist Enrico Woolford be appointed as the NCN CEO.Meanwhile, Cornette is a former journalist who is now a communications consultant and preacher.He holds a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from the Australian Institute of Business; a Bachelor in Social Sciences, (majoring in Mass Communications); a Diploma in Public Communication, and certificates in planning promotion from Bailbrook College, England.
Dear Editor,I am writing out of concern about a problematic issue that continues to affect the residents of Leguan for a number of years. I am referring to contractors who are awarded sea defence work on the island. These contractors in a very unscrupulous manner would damage infrastructure work on the island example roads, bridges and dams and leave without fixing them.To my understanding a provisional sum is given to them to effect repairs to any damages that may occur during the course of their work. I would like to state clearly that at the end of the work the contractors in a subtle way would usually pack up their equipment and leave the island without effecting any repairs to the damages they would have caused. Such actions are causing hardship on the residents to traverse the road.I therefore call on the relevant authorities to ensure that these contractors do not get away with such barbaric actions.We are grateful for the sea defence works being done, but I think it is time for the engineer, the sea defence board and the Ministry of Public Infrastructure to ensure that the principles governing these contractors are implemented.They should play a pivotal role in ensuring that the contractors abide by all rules and regulations as they strive to secure the sea defences.These contractors must be held accountable for damages they are causing to the island.Yours sincerely,Inshan AyubeVice ChairmanRegion 3
Dear Editor,The PPP candidates appear confident they’ll they will do even better in 2018 than they did in the 2016 Local Government Elections (LGE) and one A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) big wigs conceded this to me privately. The Alliance For Change (AFC), on the other hand, is expecting a total wipe out.For example, Georgetown, a People’s National Congress (PNC) stronghold, was won by that party with 83 per cent of the seats in 2016. Today that is expected to fall to about 65 per cent because of their poor performance in City Hall and the press releases from this Kennard Commission of Inquiry into the management of the City.A few nights ago, no more less than a person than the Prime Minister (an AFC elder) spoke at New Amsterdam and according to a AFC leader who communicated with me, “there were more stray dogs on the streets than human being listening to his message”. This is just but another indication that things really bad for the AFC.Meanwhile, the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) had very successful public meetings in Linden and Bartica; two PNC strongholds. These preliminary indications all point to a stronger PPP showing in all areas across the country. The PPP is running particularly well in the rural districts, where the rural youths and women are eager to send a strong message of dissatisfaction to President Granger for his poor leadership after three years. When the people’s belly “ah bun”, they will react and these LGEs is the perfect chance for them to react. This is having an out-sized impact because in the PNC strongholds, there is “voter stall” with only the die-hards expected to come out, while the PPP is being embraced by the rural independents, women and youths overwhelmingly and are having major inroad in urban centres which are the PNC strongholds.This situation points to great results for the PPP in these 2018 LGE, average for the APNU (PNC) and a total wipe-out of the AFC.The PPP candidates are younger, more ethnically diverse, they have proven themselves well trained to hammer the performance of the APNU/AFC Government over the last three years and to dominate the messaging. Plus as a bonus, they are ably supported and led by their party leader Bharrat Jagdeo who has done a fantastic job of reinventing the PPP after May 2015 when that party was on its knees after the Ramotar presidency. Today the PPP is showing signs that it is moving back to basics similar to the electoral machine of 1992. But to date, no one on the political front lines can match the energy level, the message of Jagdeo.Further complicating the PNC-APNU efforts is that their campaign comes across as disorganised compared to their 2015 campaigns as if there is some sort of infighting at the top. This has left more of their marginal supporters confused and disenchanted. The real urban independents have now totally abandoned the PNC-APNU and clearly is not interested in the AFC. Many are going to support the PPP in these 2018 LGE. To add to that, the headwinds are already massive against APNU-PNC and AFC in many of the rural districts, so much so that they had to use tricks to launch some candidates and in others just abandon the effort to put forward candidates. You cannot call yourself a national party and not present candidates in all the districts. This is the difference between the PPP and the PNC-APNU. The PPP has put up candidates in all districts while the PNC-APNU did not.Notwithstanding all this tail wind, the PPP success will depend on the discipline in the ground operations and the eventual turnouts. Their weakness in 2015 was their ground operations. Has this been corrected? Elections Day will provide the evidence.On a final note, with all its sham, weaknesses, I am convinced that the Chief Elections Officer, Keith Lowenfield will produce an election that is free enough and fair enough for the Guyanese people in 2018 because all eyes are on him, especially the American eyes.Sincerely,Sasenarine Singh,MSc – Finance, ACCAMaryland, USA
Southern California Mormon Choir concert, 7p.m. today, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 480 Sinaloa Road, Simi Valley. Free. Call (805) 581-5214. Health practices and the Bible will be the topic of guest speaker Alan Sherman after the 9:30a.m. Sunday service, Canoga Park Presbyterian Church, 22103 Vanowen St. Call (818) 883-3510. The Rev. Thomas E. Witherspoon will be honored with a retirement lunch after the 10a.m. Sunday service at Unity Church of the Valley, 2817 Montrose Ave., La Crescenta. Call (818) 249-4396. Parish picnic follows the 10a.m. Sunday service, Prince of Peace Episcopal Church, 5700 Rudnick Ave., Woodland Hills. Call (818) 346-6968. Holy Spirit Retreat Center activities: “A Day of Silence and Reflection,” led by Jody Berges, 9:30a.m. to 3:30p.m. June 16. Fee $45 with lunch, $35 without ($10 deposit by today). “Summer Solstice Labyrinth Walk,” 7p.m. June 21. The retreat is at 4316 Lanai Road, Encino. Call (818) 784-4515 or see www.hsrcenter.com. The Rev. Dale Johnsen will deliver his farewell sermon, 10:30a.m. Sunday, Heart of the Valley Community Church, 18644 Sherman Way, Reseda. Call (818) 881-3651. A Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated for Monsignor John K. Foley, who will retire July 1, noonSunday, Holy Redeemer Roman Catholic Church, 2411 Montrose Ave., Montrose. Reception follows. Call (818) 249-2008. The Rev. Stuart Bond will be installed as senior pastor, 3p.m. Sunday, Emmanuel Presbyterian Church, 588 Camino Manzanas, Thousand Oaks. Call (805) 498-4502 or see www.epconline.org. Aglow International Woodland Hills Community Lighthouse, a Christian fellowship for women, will hold a meeting, 9:30a.m. Thursday, at Woodland Hills Country Club, 21150 Dumetz Road. Buffet breakfast reservations required by Monday; $18. Call (818) 716-6253. Aglow International Westlake Community Lighthouse, will hold a meeting, 9:15a.m. Friday, Thousand Oaks Inn, 75 W. Thousand Oaks Blvd. Reservations required by Monday. An offering will be taken. Call (805) 497-7149. “The Mission of PFLAG” will be the topic of Steve Krantz at the Tuesday Night Forum, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Sepulveda Unitarian Universalist Society, 9550 Haskell Ave., North Hills. Call (818) 762-9032. “Finding Your Path” will be the topic discussed by the Rev. Jim Lockard at the inaugural Wednesday Night Alive service, 7-8p.m. Wednesday, Westlake Church of Religious Science, 880 W. Hampshire Road, Westlake Village. Call (805) 495-0105. “Be Still and Know,” a prayer, meditation and healing service led by the Rev. Jefferson Beeker, 7p.m. Wednesday, First Christian Church of North Hollywood, 4390 Colfax Ave. Call (818) 763-8218. Namaste Choral Group and the NoHo Arts Band concert, directed by the Rev. James J. Mellon, 8p.m. Thursday, NoHo Arts Center for New Thought, 11136 Magnolia Blvd., North Hollywood. Tickets: $35, $50. Call (818) 508-7101. Rummage sale, 8a.m. to 2p.m. Friday and June 16, Tujunga United Methodist Church, 9901 Tujunga Canyon Blvd. Call (818) 352-1481 or (818) 353-3669. Bluegrass and Country Sabbath service, led by Hazzan Mike Stein and Rabbi Stewart Vogel, 8:15p.m. Friday, Temple Aliyah, 6025 Valley Circle Blvd., Woodland Hills. Call (818) 346-3545. “Unity in the Lord’s Church,” a study of Ephesians 4:3-6, will be discussed by eight speakers, 8:30a.m.-5p.m. June 16, Van Nuys Church of Christ, 14655 Sherman Way, Van Nuys. Free; lunch provided. Call (818) 785-2623. “Healing the Family Tree,” a conference on effective prayers for family members, including a Mass celebrated by the Rev. Lou Cerulli and Dominic Berardino, 10a.m.-4:30p.m. June 16. Registration required; $20 (bring a lunch). Call (818) 771-1361 or see www.scrc.org. Carwash fundraiser for various charities, 10a.m.-2p.m. June 16 in the parking lot at First Christian Church of North Hollywood, 4390 Colfax Ave., Studio City. Call (818) 763-8218. “Peace and Reconciliation Through Prayer,” a lecture sponsored by the Thirty-Sixth Church of Christ, Scientist of Studio City, presented by guest speaker Ryder Stevens, 11a.m. June 16, Sportsmen’s Lodge, 12825 Ventura Blvd., Vista Rooms, Studio City. Call (818) 761-4322. “Obsession,” a screening presented by the Center for Accuracy in Mid-East Reporting in America, 7p.m. June 19, Congregation Beth Meier, 11725 Moorpark Ave., Studio City. Reservations required. Call (818) 762-4473. Catholic Singles Dance, 7:30p.m.-midnight June 22, Burbank Holiday Inn, 150 E. Angeleno Ave. Tickets: $17. Call (818) 759-1545 or see www.caci.org. “Cleaning Up the Place” will be the message delivered by youth minister Em Blattner, 8:15 and 10:45a.m. Sunday, Moorpark Presbyterian Church, 13950 Peach Hill Road, Moorpark. Call (805) 529-8422. “Enjoy the Seasons” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Evelyn Hammond, 10a.m. Sunday, when the Center for Highly Effective Living, Church of Religious Science, meets at Pacific Lodge Youth Services, 4900 Serrania Drive, Woodland Hills. Call (818) 883-1300. “An Explanation, Not an Excuse” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Joey K. Mcdonald, 8:15 and 10:30a.m. Sunday, First United Methodist Church of North Hollywood. Call (818) 763-8231. “Vision Forward” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Carrie Lauer, 10:30a.m. Sunday, Center of Spiritual Awakening, meeting at the Radisson Hotel, 9777 Topanga Canyon Blvd., Chatsworth. Call (818) 709-145. “The Wonder of It All” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Beverly Craig, 10a.m. Sunday, La Crescenta Church of Religious Science, 4845 Dunsmore Ave. Call (818) 249-1045. Soulful Sunday service: “The Sacred in the Secular,” 10:30a.m. Sunday, Sepulveda Unitarian Universalist Society, 9550 Haskell Ave., North Hills. Call (818) 894-9251 or see www.valleyonion.org. “The Secret: God is All There Is” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Marilyn Jensen-Johnson, 10a.m. Sunday, Religious Science Church of Glendale, meeting at the Glendale Masonic Lodge, 244 N. Maryland Ave. Call (818) 244-1404. “The New Lord in Town” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Jim Lee, 9:15a.m. Sunday, Bethel Lutheran Church, 17500 Burbank Blvd., Encino. Call (818) 788-2653. “Who Is the Antichrist?” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Jim Bell, 8:45, 10:15 and 11:45a.m. Sunday, West Valley Christian Church, 22450 Sherman Way, West Hills. “Nothing Comes Closer to Home” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Rob Denton, 5 p.m. Call (818) 884-6480. “Is There Something More I Could Be Doing?” will be the message delivered by the Rev. Maureen Hoyt, 10 a.m. Sunday, Granada Hills Church of Religious Science, 17622 Chatsworth St., Granada Hills. Young adults service, 6p.m. Call (818) 363-8136. Religion events are compiled by Staff Writer Holly Andres. Notices must reach the Daily News two weeks before the Saturday they are to run. Mail entries, with time, date, location and contact number, to Daily News Religion Calendar, P.O. Box 4200, Woodland Hills, CA 91365; fax (818) 713-0058; e-mail firstname.lastname@example.orgWant local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Atletico Madrid boss Diego Simeone 1 Diego Simeone has distanced himself from a move to Manchester City – insisting he is happy at Atletico Madrid.The Argentine has seen his stock go sky-high since taking over at the La Liga side in 2011 and the 44-year-old has already been linked with moves to the Blues and Paris St Germain should either of the European big-spenders decide on a coaching change.However, echoing the comments of Atletico president Enrique Cerezo over the weekend, Simeone has dismissed suggestions he may be on his way out of the Vicente Calderon any time soon, and says he is still looking at ways to make the Rojiblancos even better.He told Spanish newspaper Marca: “I feel very good at Atletico. I always want to continue improving, I’m never satisfied. I don’t know what the limit of this team is, I will continue looking.”“The happiness of completing three years at a club that I love so much is huge. I always think they can get rid of me, (but) I’m only thinking about [Atletico’s next match against] Malaga.”
LOS ANGELES – California hospitals could get a break as they struggle to meet a deadline to renovate buildings in danger of buckling during a major earthquake. State regulators want to use advanced technology to re-evaluate 1,111 medical buildings – a move that could reduce the need for costly renovations by some facilities to comply with tough safety codes passed after the deadly 1994 Northridge temblor. “If buildings pose little or no risk to patients, then why impose millions of dollars of upgrades on them?” said Kurt Schaefer, deputy director of the Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, which supports the new testing. No hospitals collapsed during the magnitude-6.7 Northridge Quake, but it disrupted care at two dozen medical centers and caused more than $3 billion in hospital-related damage. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2After the disaster, the state’s 450 acute-care facilities were required to perform a first-ever inventory to identify shaky buildings. The 2001 survey found that 40 percent of hospital structures faced significant risk of collapse during a quake. The evaluations primarily considered the structure of a building, including whether it was made of wood or concrete. Some facilities ended up in the high-risk category by default because operators couldn’t afford to hire expert inspectors. State regulators are now turning to computer software used by the Federal Emergency Management Agency to assess risk from natural disasters. Many experts consider it more precise in predicting possible quake damage because it factors in a region’s seismicity, distance from an active fault and soil conditions. It’s unclear how the new tool might affect a hospital’s current seismic rating, but state officials said they expect some buildings now flagged as most at risk could receive a safety upgrade and extra time for renovations. The proposal to re-inspect buildings will likely require action by the state Legislature. Schaefer expects the state to perform the reassessment at no cost to the facilities. Under current state law, hazardous medical buildings must be retrofitted or replaced by 2008 or face stiff penalties. Facilities can win an extension until 2013 if they show the work will interfere with care. But the state is requiring that by 2030, all hospitals be able to keep treating patients after a disaster. The California Hospital Association has persistently lobbied for relief from the upgrades, complaining that hospitals could end up spending more than $50 billion because of skyrocketing construction costs. “We’ve got to balance access to care with the need to get hospital buildings upgraded to be able to sustain a major earthquake,” association spokeswoman Jan Emerson said. Sutter Health operates 27 hospitals in Northern California and has 78 buildings listed as high-risk. Its facilities in Sacramento and the Central Valley would likely benefit from re-inspection because they are in less seismically active zones, said Carl Scheuerman, company liaison to the state. “It allows us to focus our limited capital on those buildings that are most in need of action,” he said. The California Seismic Safety Commission, an independent group that advises the Legislature and governor on earthquake matters, supports the new system to better gauge seismic risk. However, Fred Turner, the panel’s senior structural engineer, cautioned that it is more accurate when assessing large areas than individual buildings. Nevertheless, Turner said it’s a good step. “We should have better smarts and tools at our disposal,” he said. The Northridge Quake killed 57 people while causing up to $20 billion in damage and exposing serious weaknesses in the health care system. One of the state’s worst hospital tragedies occurred during the 1971 Sylmar temblor when two medical centers in Southern California collapsed, killing 50 patients. During the Northridge Quake, the health care system was severely taxed. Eight hospital buildings erected before 1970 suffered heavy damage. Near the epicenter, the Northridge Community Center Hospital lost power and telephone service while doctors at the Community Hospital in Granada Hills were forced to treat patients in the parking lot and hallways after its top floor was evacuated.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
The district received $7.4 million from the foundation, a significant amount for Los Angeles, but far less than donations to smaller districts around the country. For example, the foundation has contributed at least $110 million to New York City, the nation’s most populous school district; $36 million to Chicago schools; and $14 million to San Diego. email@example.com (818) 713-3722160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe Christmas Truce of 1914 proved that peace is possible“Through our collaborative efforts, we are helping foster a college-bound culture in our high schools, ensuring that all students receive the high-quality instruction and support they need to fulfill the challenges ahead,” Superintendent Roy Romer said in a statement. The foundation has donated more than $24.3 million to LAUSD in a series of smaller grants to open new high schools and strengthen existing ones. “LAUSD has made strides in the effort too ensure all of its students are challenged to achieve at high levels,” said Tom Vander Ark, executive director of education for the Gates Foundation. “The next steps are equally critical. This investment will help provide students with the high-quality instruction and support they need to meet these high standards.” Critics charge that despite years of discussions with the foundation, district leaders have been unwilling to relinquish control and create a partnership to build the smaller learning environments that require autonomy to succeed. Since 2001, the Gates Foundation has invested more than $1 billion to foster small learning communities designed to ease overcrowding and improve academic achievement and graduation rates in school districts throughout the nation. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced Thursday it will donate $1.3 million to Los Angeles Unified to support improvements in algebra and other college-prep courses. The district will use the Gates funds to enhance pilot programs under way at 17 district high schools, providing them with 120 math teachers, along with other resources. San Fernando Valley high schools that will benefit are Arleta, Francis Polytechnic, Grant, North Hollywood, San Fernando, SOCES, Sylmar, Van Nuys and Verdugo Hills. In addition, eight middle schools will be selected to participate in the program, which will be expanded to all secondary schools in the 2007-08 school year.
It looked like the “deal of the century,” said police Detective Michael Montoya, a couple of guys down on their luck on Skid Row, selling priceless old silver coins for 20 bucks apiece. It was a pretty good deal, too, but only for the sellers. The coins they were peddling turned out to be as worthless as three-dollar bills. “They’re such blatant counterfeits that all you have to do is give them a once-over with your eyeballs to know they’re fakes,” said Ron Guth, president of Professional Coin Grading Service in Irvine. In the case of the rare 1796 silver dollar – worth perhaps $3.5 million if it was real – there were 13 stars around Lady Liberty’s head, representing the 13 original U.S. colonies. Only problem was, the real coin contains 15 stars. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’ Then there was the 1832 George Washington quarter, a rare find indeed, seeing as how Washington didn’t start appearing on the quarter until 1932. “I keep getting calls from experts saying things like, ‘The Indian head was only on the penny from this year to this year,’ all kinds of technical stuff that a person in the know would recognize as a fake,” Montoya said a day after police put the coins on display. Investigators are still trying to find the source of the coins, which were confiscated from two street peddlers last week. Montoya said he has heard they are sold in nearby novelty shops where they are packaged in the same kind of protective wrapping that coin collectors use, but marked as “replicas.” It could be that enterprising homeless people are buying low, removing the replica stickers, and selling high to increasing numbers of yuppies moving into expensive condos on the edge of Los Angeles’ most destitute neighborhood. “Somebody sees them and thinks, ‘Wow, this guy’s got a coin worth thousands of dollars and he’s down on his luck so I’m going to get it for 20 bucks and sell it,” Montoya said. “They think they’re getting the deal of the century, and then they get it appraised and it’s worth like a dollar.” And that’s only if it contains any real silver, said Guth, who says he is seeing more and more fake coins turning up. “About once a week we get an inquiry from someone in the Philippines that bought one,” he said, adding the word in the industry is they are minted in Asia. Officers were surprised when they turned up for sale last week in a neighborhood where shoppers’ tastes have traditionally run more toward fake designer clothes, bootlegged DVDs and drugs that, although real, are not the kind you can buy at your neighborhood pharmacy. “It’s apparently the hot-ticket item right now,” Montoya said.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Meza said it is easier to find Useless Intent on the Internet than it ever was to find their CD at a store. LJ Scott, chief executive officer of Buzzplay.com, an online music marketing company, said that it’s becoming the path for all unsigned talent. “It still hasn’t come around, as far as being embraced by the old school music industry. People there are still holding on to the old formulas and business models,” Scott said. “There’s a million different Web sites, a million different contests and there’s literally millions of outlets for music.” Keith Morgan of Duarte drums for a band called Handsome Devil. He said the Internet is key to getting people to hear music and come out to shows, where independent artists make most of their money. Most groups rely heavily on the sale of CDs and merchandise to pay for the overhead that comes with being in a band – studio hours for practice and recording, distribution costs, equipment (sometimes including a van), and the making of CDs, T-shirts and bumper stickers. “As a smaller band, you want to sell as many records as possible,” Morgan said. “But I would just \ kids \ have our music, even if it’s burned, and want to come to our shows – because getting the kids to the shows, that’s how we make our money.” More than 4 million bands have posted profiles on MySpace. Some have signed with major labels, but most haven’t. With that kind of saturation, bands are looking at other avenues to get their tracks heard, such as Internet contests sponsored by concert promoters and record labels. Some companies will post an MP3 track of an unsigned band on its Web site, and listeners are invited to vote on who should win. The prizes vary from becoming an opening act at a large festival to hearing their music in a movie. In April, New Line Cinema held a contest in which the winner’s music was featured in the campy sci-fi thriller “Snakes on a Plane,” starring Samuel L. Jackson. At Buzzplay.com, the contest’s premise is similar to other Internet music competitions, but the prizes offer more than a shot at the big time, Scott said. Buzzplay.com holds a contest every year for bands that play punk rock, alternative and new rock, searching for the best unsigned talent. Since its start five years ago, prizes have included bookings at large festivals alongside other undiscovered talent and lessons in successful marketing and promotion from the folks at Buzzplay.com. But Scott said many of the bands seeking the Web site’s help are more interested in getting their music into the hands of fans rather than the hands of industry executives who can’t seem to wrap their minds around the Internet music age. “We help bands that help themselves,” he said. firstname.lastname@example.org (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2472 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! WEST COVINA – The Mariachi Divas had conquered the local music scene and the band was on its way to becoming a national success. Then, in a flash, the Divas and their tasty blend of Latin jazz, pop and traditional mariachi were right back where they started – doing it all on their own. Tower Records, which started selling the Divas’ compact disc “As Somos,” announced last month it was closing, shutting the door on the group’s national distribution deal with Tower-owned Bayside Entertainment Distribution. “When you’re independent you have to do a lot yourself,” said Divas founder Cindy Shea. “I’ve invested a lot in this.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESurfer attacked by shark near Channel Islands calls rescue a ‘Christmas miracle’The closing of Tower marks the end of an era of sorts. It was the only major music chain to reserve space in its racks for local, unsigned talent. Officials at Tower Records’ corporate office could not be reached for comment. “A lot of indie bands did depend on them,” said Mitchell Meza, lead singer for Pico Rivera-based Useless Intent, a politically-charged punk rock band. Tower’s closing “is a blow to people who go to that store to get a chance to hear these indie, local bands.” Now, independent artists are relying on other methods, such as posting profiles on MySpace.com, to get their sounds heard. The Internet has opened the door to bands that, only 10 years ago, had few options other than to play gigs, tour constantly and sell tapes and CDs out of car trunks to get noticed. At CDBaby.com, an online music store that sells only independent tunes, any musician can pull in major-label numbers. Singer/songwriter Alexi Murdoch, who released “Four Songs” on his own label, has sold about 50,000 copies of his first EP, according to the Web site.