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Thursday, March 22, 2018

U.S. Passport Execution Fee Will Increase to $35

የትውልድ ኢትዮጵያዊ የውጭ ዜጋ መታወቂያ ካርድ አገልግሎት
U.S. Passport Execution Fee Will Increase to $35
Effective April 2, 2018, the passport execution fee will increase from $25 to $35. The $10 execution fee increase only applies to U.S. passport applicants using the DS-11 form, such as first-time applicants over 16, children under 16, and applicants who re-apply after reporting their previous passport lost or stolen.

The $10 fee increase does not apply to adults eligible to renew their passport by mail using the DS-82 form. Renewal customers can mail their application and supporting documentation to the Department of State and should not apply at a passport acceptance facility or pay an execution fee. To learn more about renewing your passport, visit our Renew page.

Customers applying with the DS-11 form pay two separate fees: an application fee to the U.S. Department of State and the execution fee to the passport acceptance facility. Passport acceptance facilities such as post offices, clerks of court, or public libraries are designated to accept passport applications on behalf of the U.S. Department of State. With more than 7,600 acceptance facility locations, customers applying for the first time can find a convenient location to apply for their passport. Some acceptance facilities are open nights and weekends and take passport photos on-site. Find a location near you using our Acceptance Facility Search Tool.

The Department of State generally sets consular fees at an amount calculated to achieve recovery of the costs to the U.S. government of providing the consular service. The latest Cost of Service Model showed that the costs associated with passport execution were higher than the current fee of $25.

The proposed fee change was published in the Federal Register as a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking and public comments were accepted until November 18, 2016, 60 days after the Notice’s publication. The Final Rule, implementing the change, includes the Department’s response to relevant comments received.

How to apply for US passport and its fee. As of March 2018

How to apply for US passport and its fees. As of March 2018
Attention! Due to laws and regulations as well as rules  US passport application requirements , fees and other details may change. Please refer the current unto date information by simply going to
the US Passport Agency official web site 

Effective April 2, 2018, the passport execution fee will increase from $25 to $35. The $10 execution fee increase only applies to U.S. passport applicants using the DS-11 form, such as first-time applicants over 16, children under 16, and applicants who re-apply after reporting their previous passport lost or stolen

Passport Requirements

Passport Fees
Find the cost for your passport and payment methods on Passport Fees
Adult First-Time Applicants (16 and Older)

ProductFormApplication FeeExecution Fee
Passport BookDS-11$110$25
Passport CardDS-11$30$25
Passport Book & CardDS-11$140$25

Adult Renewal Applicants (16 and Older)
Adult renewal applicants residing in the U.S. must apply by mail. For more information on how to apply, please see Renew My Passport or Children 16 and 17.
ProductFormApplication Fee
Passport BookDS-82$110
Passport Card DS-82$30
Passport Book & CardDS-82$140

Child Applicants (Under 16)
All child applicants, including renewals, must apply in person. Application Fees and Execution Fees are paid separately. For more information on a passport for a child, please see Children Under 16.
ProductForm Application FeeExecution Fee
Passport BookDS-11$80$25
Passport CardDS-11$15$25
Passport Book & CardDS-11$95$25

All child applicants, including renewals, must apply in person. Application Fees and Execution Fees are paid separately. For more information on a passport for a child, please see Children Under 16.
ProductForm Application FeeExecution Fee
Passport BookDS-11$80$25
Passport CardDS-11$15$25
Passport Book & CardDS-11$95$25

All Additional Services Fees are per application. For example, if you want to expedite your application and your child's, you must pay an additional $60 for each application.
ServiceAdditional FeeNotes
Expedited Service$60.00See Get a Passport In a Hurry. Only available for applicants in the U.S.
Overnight Delivery Service$15.89Only available for Passport Book applicants in the U.S. 
File Search$150.00See Request a File Search for more information.

Applying at a Passport Acceptance Facility

Application Fee and any Additional Services Fees:

Checks (personal, certified, cashier's, traveler's) and money orders payable to "U.S. Department of State"
Credit and debit cards CANNOT be accepted
$25 Execution Fee Paid Separately:

Money orders at all locations, payable as instructed by the facility
Personal checks and cash (exact change only) at some locations
Credit cards at U.S. postal facilities and some other locations 

*Please verify acceptable payment methods with the acceptance facility ahead of time. 
Applying by Mail

Renewal Fee and any Additional Services Fees:
Applying at a Passport Agency
All Fees:

Credit Cards (Visa, MasterCard, American Express, Discover) and Debit Cards displaying the Visa or MasterCard logo
Checks (personal, certified, cashiers, travelers), payable to "U.S. Department of State"
Money orders (U.S. Postal, international, currency exchanges), payable to "U.S. Department of State"
Cash (exact amount only- no change provided)

Pre-paid credit card or gift card displaying the Visa or MasterCard logo

Applying from Outside the U.S.

Overseas applicants should see Applying For a Passport from Outside the United States for acceptable payment methods.
Passport Forms
Use our passport Form Finder to make sure you're using the right form to get your passport.
Passport Photos
CALL 619 255 5530 YEBBOPHOTO
Where to Apply

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

በአንድ ወቅት ከ 9000 በላይ ቅርንጫፎች የነበረው ብላክበስተር የተባለው የቪዲዮ አከራይ ኩባንያ እስከ ዛሬ ይዞት ቀርቶ ከነበሩት 6 ሱቆች መካከል ከመጨረሻዎቹ ውስጥ 4ቱን ዘጋ ::

በአንድ ወቅት  ከ 9000 በላይ  ቅርንጫፎች  የነበረው  ብላክበስተር የተባለው የቪዲዮ  አከራይ  ኩባንያ   እስከ ዛሬ  ይዞት  ቀርቶ ከነበሩት 6 ሱቆች   መካከል ከመጨረሻዎቹ ውስጥ   4ቱን  ዘጋ ::
Many of today’s kids will never know the joy of going to Blockbuster on a Friday night and picking out a movie from the “New Releases” section to watch. The beloved video rental chain, which began closing its stores in 2013announced last week that it would shutter its North Pole, Alaska location, thanking patrons for their many years of support.
But Blockbuster isn’t totally extinct yet. Although the once-ubiquitous movie rental company has shuttered thousands of locations across the country (at its height, the company operated some 9,000 locations worldwide), there are still six stores remaining, four in Alaska and two in Oregon.
While you may be surprised to learn that there are even Blockbusters still in existence, the brick and mortar video rental market found its niche in Alaska where the lack of high-speed Internet makes video streaming difficult, and mail delivery DVD rental has fallen by the wayside as Netflix has focused on online streaming.

San Diego: San Diego softens insurance rules for taxis to help them battle Uber, Lyf

በአሁኑ  ወቅት  በቴክኖሎጂና  በገንዘብ  ታግዘው በአሜሪካ  ለዘመናት የነበረውን  ያታክሲ  ገበያ   አፈር  ድሜ   ያስገቡትን  ኡበር  እና  ሊፍት  የተባሉትን  ኩባንያዎች  ፉክክር  ለመጋፈጥ የሚያስችል  በካሊፎርንያ  ግዛት  በሳንድያጎ ከተማ አዲስ  ደንብ  ወጣ። በዚህ አዲስ በወጣው  ደንብ  የታክሲ  ባለቤቶች  መግባት  የነበረባቸውን  የ 1 ሚሊዮን  ዶላር የሚያወጣ  ኢንሹራንስ  ወደ $350ሺ  ዝቅ  ያደረገው ሲሆን  የታክሲ  ባለንብረቶች ከዚህ ቀደም  በወር  ከ $350 እስከ $450  የሚያወጣውን  ኢንሹራንስ ክፍያ  ቢያንስ ቢያንስ  ከግማሽ  በላይ ያወርደዋል ተብሎ  ይገመታል።  በዚህ  አዲስ  ማሻሻያ  ላይ ብዙ  ነገሮች  ለባለ  ታክሲው  እንዲረዱ  ተብለው  የተለወጡ  ናቸው። ለሁሉም  ከዚህ  በታች  ያለውን  የእንግሊዘኛ  ዘገባ ያንብቡ::

San Diego on Monday lowered the insurance coverage cabbies must have from $1 million to $350,000
The move comes with demand for taxis plummeting because of Uber and Lyft ride-hailing apps.
The number of people with taxi permits has fallen nearly 30 percent in two years, from 1,266 to 884.

San Diego is trying to save its struggling taxi industry by allowing operators to carry significantly lower insurance coverage, helping make taxis more competitive with app-based ride services Uber and Lyft.

The City Council voted 6-3 on Monday to shrink San Diego’s minimum required insurance coverage from $1 million to $350,000, a move that essentially reverses an increase from $300,000 to $1 million that the council approved in 2010.

The goal is the survival of the local taxi industry, which has seen demand plummet because of Uber and Lyft. The number of people with taxi permits has fallen nearly 30 percent in two years, from 1,266 to 884.

The change is unlikely to lead to a rash of accidents in which cabbies don’t have adequate coverage, said officials from the Metropolitan Transit System, which regulates the city’s taxi industry.

An actuarial analysis of the last five years shows that the average claim per crash was about $7,000 and that 99.61 percent of crashes caused damage of less than $350,000.

“You can never insure for outlier things that are going to happen,” said Councilwoman Barbara Bry of La Jolla. “I think it’s really important to keep the taxi industry in business.”

Bry noted that unlike taxis, Uber and Lyft don’t guarantee 24-hour service and have no cap on what they can charge, making their rates frequently higher than taxis during surge periods like rainstorms or holidays.

Uber and Lyft, which are regulated statewide by the California Public Utilities Commission, also face less rigorous insurance requirements than taxis in San Diego, MTS officials say.

They need $1 million in coverage, which is typically provided by the company instead of the driver, only when they have been summoned for a pickup or are carrying a passenger.

At other times, such as when the app is open but the driver hasn’t been summoned, their requirements are similar to ordinary commercial insurance: $50,000 per person, $100,000 per incident and $30,000 for property.

The six votes in favor of the softened insurance requirements for taxis included the council’s five Democrats and one of the panel’s four Republicans, Lorie Zapf of Bay Ho.

"Lots of families have lost their livelihoods overnight," said Zapf, explaining why she broke ranks with her Republican colleagues on the issue. "They've lost their ability to be competitive."

Zapf said that many of the city’s taxi drivers are hard-working immigrants, some of whom paid thousands of dollars for taxi medallions that have become essentially worthless.

Another point Zapf made was that San Diego is the only city among the nation’s 10 largest to require as much as $1 million in insurance coverage for taxis. Los Angeles requires $350,000.

Councilman Scott Sherman of Allied Gardens, who cast one of the three “no” votes, said he understood the intent but couldn’t be supportive.

Sherman said taxi operators should form their own groups to control premiums and reduce costs.

He also raised concerns about the city and MTS getting sued after big crashes in which a taxi driver didn’t have enough coverage, but attorneys for the city and MTS said both agencies have immunity because they regulate the industry.

The reduction in minimum coverage comes as insurance premiums for taxi have increased 80 percent in the last six years, including a 35 percent jump that was scheduled to kick in this spring without the reduction from $1 million.

For a typical taxi driver, the annual cost of such insurance has increased from $3,000 in 2010 to $5,500 this year.

"We're not asking for a handout, we're asking to be more competitive in a marketplace," said Tony Hueso, owner of USA Cab.

Adrian Kwiatkowski, leader of the local Transportation Alliance Group, predicted San Diego could be a trendsetter in California, the only part of the country where the $1 million requirement is common.

He said Orange County would likely follow San Diego’s lead, and San Francisco officials recently began analyzing whether to drop their requirement from $1 million.

Kwiatkowski said the insurance rules are just one reason Uber and Lyft are killing the taxi industry.

He said the city’s taxi ordinance is 40 pages, while the state’s is five pages.

"It's absurd," he said. “The taxi industry and other transportation providers are saddled with regulations at the local level, while Uber and Lyft get away with whatever they want because they are regulated by the state. That's why there's such a disparity in market share."

The crisis in the industry comes just a few years after partial deregulation of local taxis came with optimism about higher incomes for drivers and better customer service.

The new city regulations are scheduled for approval by the MTS board on April 12.

Friday, March 16, 2018

“I was embarrassed that you drove a taxicab. But not anymore.” (ማዳመጥ ወይም መታየት ያለበት ታሪክ)

Mohammad Ashraf Faridi and Muhammad Faridi


Mohammad Ashraf Faridi immigrated from Pakistan to the United States in the 1980s. He settled in New York City, and his family joined him almost a decade later. By then, Mohammad was earning a living driving a cab.
At StoryCorps, his oldest son, Muhammad, talked about growing up as the son of a taxi driver.
Top photo: Mohammad Ashraf Faridi with his son, Muhammad Faridi, at their StoryCorps interview in New York City.
Bottom photo: A young Muhammad Faridi (right) with his sister and little brother while still in Pakistan. Courtesy of the Faridi family.


Muhammad Faridi (MF) & Mohammad Ashraf Faridi (MAF)
Muhammad Faridi (MF): You used to go to work and then come back home around 2am. So in the morning you used to send me to go clean your car. I would vacuum, take out the mats, smack them against the pole to get the dust out. And then I was maybe 14, 15, and I was doing that and a kid from the neighborhood just began making fun of me. ’Hey! Cab boy! Taxi boy!’ That’s one of those experiences that made me embarrassed.
Mohammad Ashraf Faridi (MAF): At that time my financial position was no good. 
MF: After your 18th birthday you can get your taxi license. 
MAF: So you said, ’I want to help you.’
MF: We drove together for a couple of days.
MAF: Right.
MF: You showed me the streets, bridges, everything. And I started college, and went to law school, and I was still working part-time, driving. And then I began working for a federal district court judge. The judge at that time was in his late 80s. So I used to help him carry his briefcase down. And one day, the judge called for a car service, and you came to pick him up.
MAF: Yeah.
MF: I put the briefcase in the car. We waved at each other. And you drove the judge home. The next day the judge and me, we were having lunch. I said, ’The driver who picked you up yesterday was my father.’ The judge was very upset at me that I didn’t introduce him to you. I, at that point, never really liked talking about my family. We don’t come from Park Avenue and I was embarrassed that you drove a taxicab. But not anymore. As I grew older, I’m proud. You know, I think you’ve done a great job.
MAF: The bottom line is this: I got everything in my life — my friends, my family. I am happy.
MF: And in my life if I can emulate that by a fraction I would think that I’ve lived a good life.

Saturday, March 10, 2018

This African Airline (Ethiopian Airlines) Wants to Be the New Emirates (WJ)

This African Airline Wants to Be the New Emirates

Aided by China, Ethiopian Airlines is growing by leaps and bounds, challenging the regional dominance of foreign carriers and now expanding into the U.S.

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia—A new global air hub is developing in an unlikely place: this highland capital in East Africa.
Over the past decade, state-owned Ethiopian Airlines has become Africa’s largest carrier and bought stakes in continental rivals. Its passenger count, which has quadrupled over that time, is expected to surpass 10 million by the end of 2018. The airline also has built one of the world’s youngest fleets, including dozens of Airbus SE and Boeing Co. planes.
For the first time, an African airline is challenging European and Middle Eastern airlines’ commercial dominance of the continent’s skies. And now Ethiopian Airlines is pushing into North America, adding a fifth destination—Chicago—this year.
Ethiopia is one of just seven African countries cleared for direct flights to the U.S.—a connection that harks back to the Ethiopian carrier’s founding in 1945 as a joint venture with the now-defunct Trans World Airlines.
“Ethiopia is becoming a critical hub for intercontinental traffic for people traveling from the U.S.,” Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said during a visit to the country on Thursday. “I think this is going to promote a great deal of interest in Africa and in Ethiopia.”
“We need to educate the American public,” Tewolde Gebremariam, Ethiopian Airlines’ chief executive, said in an interview. The airline this year launched its first digital marketing strategy, targeting potential fliers via Facebook , Google, Twitter and travel websites like Expedia .
Mairéad O’Grady, a 30-year-old educator from Washington, D.C., who flew on Ethiopian recently to Uganda, is one of the new converts. “It was a combination of the cost and the flight time; it seemed like the best of both options,” she said.
This year, Ethiopian will unveil two testaments to its ambition: a $363 million overhaul of its shabby and overcrowded terminal at Bole International Airport that will more than double annual passenger capacity to 22 million—roughly matching Washington D.C.’s Dulles International Airport’s annual traffic—and a $65 million airport hotel. Meantime, inside a nearby $100 million aviation academy, recruits practice evacuations in a purpose-built swimming pool, while executives plot the company’s expansion.
“Even though [Ethiopian] is 100% state-owned, it’s run like a business: The board runs it as if it’s British Airways or United Airlines,” said Zemedeneh Negatu, chairman of Fairfax Africa Fund LLC, a U.S.-based investment firm that consults on aviation. “Many other African airlines are run like the personal fiefdom of the government of the time.”

Thursday, March 1, 2018

ለምን የሳንድያጎ የኢትዮጵያ ኮሙኒቲ አባል አልሆኑም? Survey and Suggestion Box

ይህ  ፎርም  የእርስዎን  ማንነት ሳያውቅ  ያለወትን አስተያየት ለማወቅ እና  ለወደፊቱ  ጠንካራ  የሆነ   ኮሙኒቲ ለመገንባት ለሚደረገው  ጥረት አጋዥ  የሆናል በማለት በግላችን  የምናደርገው  የአስተያየት መስጫ ጥናት  ነው::
እባክዎ  እርስዎ  በፈለጉት  መንገድ  ነጻ  ሆነው አስተያየት ይስጡ :: የእርስዎ  አስተያየት በጣም  አስፈላጊና ጠቃሚ  ነው። 

Thursday, February 22, 2018

Ethiopia: If you misspell your business sign you may be fined

If you misspell your business sign you may be fined . According one news source any  governmental, public  or  private entity will be fined if any of their signs contain any misspelled Afan Ormo words. This comes after the local government starts enforcing its new rule in various signs across the city by simply putting a red hug  X  on signs and banners even hotel and restaurant menus who they think hold a misspelled or grammatically incorrect sentences. According to the Amharic news any future offenses (misspellings)   will be seen  as a violation  of city's code and business and governmental or public offices will be forced to pay hefty fines.

This could be the 1st in its kind to fine someone or business for misspelling a word or writing grammatically incorrect sentence. Some thinks the government is going to far to relinquish citizen's basic right such as freedom of speech  and other granted rights by the Ethiopian constitution. So far we have not heard how the Federal government is reacting this new local rules  

Monday, February 19, 2018

Guess what the Movie "The Black Panther" is not based on a mythical or fictional land, but it is based on Ethiopia.

Guess what the Movie "The Black Panther" is not based on a mythical or fictional land,  but  it is based on Ethiopia.

After hearing, watching and reading about The Black Panther 's reaction from people yesterday I decided to go to the movie theater to watch it,unfortunately the 7:00PM show was sold out and they told me I had to return to the 9:15 PM show. Since I did not have that time to stay till 9PM and I decided to watch it  for some other day and left . Then,  I returned to my office and soon I got a news feed from BBC about The Black Panther , the news was a video clip from BBC Africa an  interview given by one of the cast  member Lupita Nyong'o about the movie's premiere in South Africa .

During the interview Lupita said The Black Panther is based on a "fictional" African country which is  never been colonized and has been independent  and she said her character NAKIA   is a warrior  and queen who is defending her land from invaders.

Daaa! That country  is Ethiopia and her character is an Ethiopian Queen, who is  the greatest queen of the world called   MAKIDA or  aka QUEEN OF SHEBA or some call it SHIBA.  Also I was watching in the internet some pictures from The Black Panther how the costume is influenced by African culture and some of the narratives are  African real lives. 

So the movie  "The Black Panther" is not based on a fictional or mythical land but  it is based on real country and real people.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

U.S. Embassy Statement on the Ethiopian Government’s Declared State of Emergency

We strongly disagree with the Ethiopian government’s decision to impose a state of emergency that includes restrictions on fundamental rights such as assembly and expression.
We recognize and share concerns expressed by the government about incidents of violence and loss of life, but firmly believe that the answer is greater freedom, not less.
The challenges facing Ethiopia, whether to democratic reform, economic growth, or lasting stability, are best addressed through inclusive discourse and political processes, rather than through the imposition of restrictions.
The declaration of a state of emergency undermines recent positive steps toward creating a more inclusive political space, including the release of thousands of prisoners. Restrictions on the ability of the Ethiopian people to express themselves peacefully sends a message that they are not being heard.
We strongly urge the government to rethink this approach and identify other means to protect lives and property while preserving, and indeed expanding, the space for meaningful dialogue and political participation that can pave the way to a lasting democracy.


Ethiopia's New State of Emergency detail released

Ethiopia's New State of Emergency  detail released

Friday, February 16, 2018

Mark Zuckerberg's Valentine's Day photo got spammed after Facebook blocked an Ethiopian activist

Mark Zuckerberg's Valentine's Day photo got spammed after Facebook blocked an Ethiopian activist

  • Mark Zuckerberg posted a Valentine's Day picture of himself and his older daughter sharing pizza on the roof of Facebook's headquarters.
  • The post was quickly swarmed with dozens of comments calling on the company to unblock the account of an Ethiopian activist.
  • Facebook late Wednesday apologized and reversed course by unblocking the account.