Mired in a PR nightmare, the president of a Dallas real estate firm delivered Easter cupcakes to the home of Alzheimer’s patient Ruth Sanders and promised to stop suing her if she’d help rescue his company’s flailing public image.
The Henry S. Miller Co. represented Ruth in 2012 when she tried to sell her historic home in the developing and affluent Uptown area of Dallas. They brought her a $1 million offer, but the deal fell through and Ruth was left owing the company tens of thousands in brokerage fees.
The firm sued and the courts agreed she owed a judgement of $125,000. But when The Dallas Morning News reported the story last week the community was outraged. Even the brother of the real estate firm’s president wrote, “I’m embarrassed and ashamed for the members of my family that run HS Miller Co today.” That left Greg Miller, president and son of the company’s founder, only one option. Grab a dozen cupcakes, tuck his tail between his legs and call off his legal team. “Are we idiots for suing them? Yes,” Miller said.
El Niño becoming La Niña
“There's NO DOUBT we're headed for La Niña by Summer and a moderate to potentially strong one at that by Fall into Winter,” says AgWeb blogger Bill Kirk, the CEO and Co-founder of Weather Trends International.
Reuters columnist Karen Braun writes, “A La Niña environment has already begun to develop. Cooler waters are building beneath the surface in the Pacific Ocean and El Niño-supporting trade winds have lessened.”
A La Niña event can increase temperatures in the southeast and lower them in the northwest. La Niña also creates conditions more favorable for hurricanes in the Caribbean, and greater instances of tornados in those states of the U.S. already vulnerable to them.
Kansas/Oklahoma wildfire update
The wildfire that began last week has scorched about 620 square miles in Kansas and Oklahoma.
Light rain and several inches of snow in the area helped firefighters over the weekend, but emergency officials are fearful that high winds forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday could rekindle hot spots. The wildfire has already become the largest in Kansas history, and the Kansas Livestock Association (KLA) says the cattle casualties are still being counted. Many surviving cattle are suffering from respiratory problems due to smoke inhalation, and some were directly injured by fire. KLA and the Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Association have established relief funds to help the cattlemen affected.
7 million drones by 2020
Annual sales of drones in the U.S. will hit 2.5 million this year and swell to 7 million by 2020, according to a projection from the Federal Aviation Administration. Unmanned aircraft purchases are growing both for hobbyists and for commercial ventures that perform inspections, assist farmers, and survey construction sites, according to the agency’s annual forecast of aviation activity, released on Thursday.