Fasten your life jackets! A fleet of Fiat 500's are spotted 'swimming' off the coast of Miami's South Beach

  • Fiat 500s spotted 'swimming' off Miami's South Beach today

  • Appears to be part of a Fiat campaign to promote the car in America

  • Cars were driven by models and explored the islands off the coast

By Jaymi Mccann


They are designed for navigating Italy's winding, narrow, streets.

But it seems Fiat 500's are equally at home in the water after a fleet was seen racing a boat in the ocean off Miami Beach.

The cars were driven by models and taken around some of the luxurious islands off the coast of Miami.

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A fleet of Fiat 500 cars were seen 'swimming' off the coast of Miami

A fleet of Fiat 500 cars were seen 'swimming' off the coast of Miami

A classic white and dark red Fiat 500 is driven by a model. The stint appears to be part of a wider campaign

A classic white and dark red Fiat 500 is driven by a model. The stunt appears to be part of a wider campaign

A metallic red car also swims through the water. Fiat are attempting to promote their 500 car in the United States

A metallic red car also swims through the water. Fiat are attempting to promote their 500 car in the United States

The group of red and white Fiats were 'swimming' near the Venetian Causeway in South Beach, Miami.

The stunt resembled Fiat's most recent advert in the United States.

In the commercial Fiat cars 'swim' from Italy to various shores of the country.

A narrator is heard saying 'The next wave of Italian's has come to America'

While the cars were designed to navigate Italy's ancient narrow streets, this Fiat 500 seems more at home in the water

While the cars were designed to navigate Italy's ancient narrow streets, this Fiat 500 seems more at home in the water

The fleet of cars provided a spectacle for observers on Miami's South Beach

The fleet of cars provided a spectacle for observers on Miami's South Beach

The car gets close to a black speed boat. Fiat have launched an advert that implies the Italians have arrived in America

The car gets close to a black speed boat. Fiat have launched an advert that implies the Italians have arrived in America

The cars are also featured in the video for Pitbull's latest song with Arianna, 'Sexy People'

Charlie Sheen drives one of the cars from a luxury yacht.

The song has caused controversy with some asking if it really is a music video, or just a very clever car advert.

Coincidentally, Pitbull is currently in town for an iHeart Radio event.

The stunt resembled the company's advert in which Fiat 500's 'swim' from Italy to America's many famous coastlines

The stunt resembled the company's advert in which Fiat 500's 'swim' from Italy to America's many famous coastlines

The cars explored the famous coastline, taking in the luxurious islands surrounding it

The cars explored the famous coastline, taking in the luxurious islands surrounding it

The video for Pitbull and Arianna's new song also features Fiat 500's 'swimming' in the Miami coastline

The video for Pitbull and Arianna's new song also features Fiat 500's 'swimming' in the Miami coastline

Former KU star Thomas Robinson on the move again, headed to Portland

Maybe now, Thomas Robinson can finally settle somewhere. Maybe now, his NBA career can finally lift off.

Former Kansas Jayhawk Thomas Robinson stood with NBA commissioner David Stern after the Sacramento Kings selected him with the No. 5 overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft. Four months after the Kings dealt him to Houston, Robinson is now headed to the Portland Trail Blazers.

Robinson, the former Kansas All-All-American, has been an NBA drifter for the last year, a lottery pick one day, unwanted and unneeded the next.

On Sunday, Yahoo Sports reported that the Houston Rockets had reached an agreement to send Robinson to the Portland Trail Blazers, a trade that would clear up salary cap space so Houston can move on and pursue Dwight Howard.

The deal, of course, comes just more than four months after the Sacramento Kings dealt Robinson to Houston in a multi-year deal that sent former KU center Cole Aldrich to Sacramento. This time, the Trail Blazers landed Robinson for the draft rights to two guys named Kostas Papanikolau and Marko Todorovic, as well as two future second-round picks.

So perhaps this is not the traditional career arc for a player that was selected with the fifth overall pick in the 2012 draft. Robinson, a 6-foot-9 power forward, averaged just 4.8 points and 15.9 minutes in 51 games for the Kings last year, before his minutes decreased even more in Houston. If Robinson expected to be an impact pro after leading Kansas to the NCAA title game in 2012, it would not happen in year one.

But now, there are reasons to believe that Portland could be a better fit. The Trail Blazers finished 33-49 last season, and Robinson will join a roster that is very thin — but does provide the chance to learn from All-Star forward LaMarcus Aldridge and play alongside emerging point guard Damian Lillard, the NBA’s rookie of the year last season.

Translation: Robinson should finally get some minutes — and it could come in a relatively healthy environment.

Better yet, Robinson will be reunited with former KU teammate Jeff Withey, who was selected by the Blazers in the second round of last Thursday’s NBA Draft.

Maybe the presence of Withey will allow Robinson to tap into some of his old KU mojo.

Robinson is still the player that nearly went No. 2 in the draft behind Anthony Davis. Still has the same motor, the same athleticism, the same ability to rebound. Maybe now, his first-year struggles will add a little fuel. Maybe now, Robinson has found a better fit.

Louisville transfer Zach Price says he's joining Missouri basketball team

Zach Price, who helped Louisville win a national championship in April but announced his intentions to transfer two months later, is coming to Missouri.

Zach Price (right) didn’t play a lot at Louisville, but Missouri is counting on him for the 2014-15 season.

Price, a 6-foot-10, 250-pound junior forward, made an announcement Sunday on Twitter that he had signed paperwork to join the Tigers. He’s the second transfer in a little more than two months to pick Missouri, joining former Baylor swingman Deuce Bello.

Both Bello and Price will have two seasons of remaining eligibility starting in 2014-15. MU coach Frank Haith has two scholarships left to use on the 2014 class.

Price played just 25 games in two seasons with the Cardinals but was a four-star prospect by Rivals.com coming out of Jeffersontown High School in Kentucky in 2011.

He played in 16 games last season, starting seven, and averaged 7.7 minutes per game, 1.3 points and 1.4 rebounds.

When Price decided that he wanted to transfer, Louisville coach Rick Pitino cited playing time as a reason.

“We’re a deep basketball team, and we respect anybody’s decision that wants to play a lot,” Pitino told the Louisville Courier-Journal in June. “Certainly he didn’t play a whole lot for us and wasn’t a major factor in what we do, and he felt like he could go somewhere else and be a major factor. So we respect his decision and hope he has great success when he moves on.”

Price told PowerMizzou.com on Sunday that MU associate coach Tim Fuller, who recruited Price to Louisville while working on the Cardinals’ staff, played a factor in the decision.

“It was very important, being the fact that I knew him and had an established relationship with him,” Price said.

Price also told PowerMizzou that he plans to be on the MU campus Wednesday.

“I feel like I can bring a lot to Missouri, but there’s a lot I also need to work on,” he said. “I feel like I can be a good defensive player and a good offensive player and be incorporated into the system like the other good big men Missouri has had. I want to work on all aspects of my game.”

When Price is eligible to play, he will join 6-11 Stefan Jankovic, 6-10 Ryan Rosburg, 6-11 Keanau Post, 6-9 Johnathan Williams III and 6-8 Torren Jones in the Tigers’ projected 2014 frontcourt. Williams and Jones will be sophomores, Jankovic and Rosburg will be juniors and Post will be a senior.

Bello also was seeking more playing time and cited Fuller as a reason for his decision to come to Missouri.

“I just feel like the coaching staff is good, and I’ve been cool with Tim for a while,” Bello told The Star in May.

Official: 19 firefighters die battling Ariz. fire

— An Arizona forestry official says 19 firefighters have died battling a fast-moving wildfire.

Forestry spokesman Art Morrison says the firefighters were caught by the fire Sunday afternoon near the central Arizona town of Yarnell. He says they were forced to deploy their fire shelters.

Earlier Sunday, the wildfire prompted evacuations of 50 homes in several communities about 85 miles northwest of Phoenix. Later Sunday afternoon, the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office expanded the evacuations to include more residents in the town of Yarnell.

Morrison says several homes in the community of Glenisle have been burned. He says no injuries or deaths have been reported from that area.

About 200 firefighters are fighting the wildfire, which has also forced the closure of parts of state Route 89.

THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. Check back soon for further information. AP's earlier story is below.

A fire information officer says 19 firefighters are unaccounted for while battling the Yarnell Hill Fire in a central Arizona community.

Mike Reichling told the Arizona Republic (http://bit.ly/158NjWp ) that 20 firefighters were involved in a "serious incident."

The newspaper reports that one of the firefighters has been located.

The Yavapai County Sheriff's Office has notified residents in the Peeples Valley area and in the town of Yarnell to evacuate.

Roxie Glover, spokeswoman at Wickenburg Community Hospital, told The Associated Press that the hospital has been told to expect residents with injuries and firefighters.

Earlier Sunday, the fast-moving fire prompted evacuations of 50 homes in the Buckhorn, Model Creek and Double A Bar Ranch areas about 85 miles northwest of Phoenix.

In the afternoon, the Yavapai County Sheriff's Office expanded the evacuations to include residents in the Peeples Valley area and in the town of Yarnell.

The wildfire also forced the closure of parts of state Route 89, the Arizona Department of Transportation announced. The department did not have an estimate of how long the closure would last but advised drivers to use U.S. 93 or Interstate 17 as alternate routes.

The Red Cross has opened a shelter at Yavapai College in Prescott, the sheriff's office said.

The Yarnell Hill Fire now covers nearly 2,000 acres, according to the newspaper.

The fire started Friday but picked up momentum Sunday as the area experienced high temperatures, low humidity and windy conditions.

About two hundred firefighters are now working at the fire, but an additional 130 firefighters and more water- and retardant-dropping helicopters and aircraft are on their way.

In another Arizona fire, a 2-acre blaze that started at a motorcycle salvage yard and spread to a trailer park has destroyed five mobile homes in the Gila County community of Rye, located more than 130 miles east of Yarnell.

Gila County Health and Emergency Services Director Michael O'Driscoll said no one was injured in Rye.

The fire was ignited Saturday night at All Bikes Sales located off Highway 87. It spread to neighboring federal Forest Service land but was fully contained within 12 hours of its start.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.

Seven adults and two children were staying at a shelter set up for people who were evacuated, the Red Cross said.

State parks fall victim to tight budgets in Kansas, Missouri and across the nation

— Monica Haverkamp is ready to heap praise on the upkeep and cleanliness of Clinton State Park. Until she’s asked about the beach.

As she laid out a towel and groomed a spot for tanning at Clinton Lake, Haverkamp ticked off some of the beach’s problems: a lack of sand, weeds overtaking the perimeter, and a nearby culvert cutting across the shore.

On this weekday, she’s the only one on the beach.

“It needs a lot of improvement,” she said. “People aren’t using it like they used to because it’s not as nice.”

Clinton Lake’s beach is a sign of the times at state parks in Kansas, Missouri and across the country as states scramble to preserve outdoor recreation while funding basic services such as schools, police and social services.

The nation’s 7,975 state parks sit in a precarious position with shortened seasons, new admissions fees and threatened closures brought on by budget turmoil in recent years.

They also face mushrooming backlogs of repairs ranging from $26 million in Kansas to $750 million in Illinois to more than $1 billion in California. Park supporters estimate Missouri’s park repair needs at about $400 million.

“It has reached a point where Band-Aids and baling wire are just not quite enough,” said Steve Nagle, Missouri Parks Association president.

In tight budget times, lawmakers regularly put off park upkeep as they scramble to find enough money for basic government services.

“It’s really not a good picture right now,” said Margaret Walls, senior fellow for Resources for the Future, an energy and environmental policy think tank.

States have been gradually getting out of the business of bankrolling parks since the 1990s, sometimes cutting costs or replacing general tax dollars with new fees or dedicated taxes that are less vulnerable to the whimsy of legislators.

“There has been this death by a thousand cuts,” said Richard Dolesh, vice president for conservation and parks at the National Recreation and Park Association.

In 1990, general tax dollars covered about 60 percent of a state park’s budget. By 2011, that had dropped to 34 percent.

The spending cuts and delayed repair work, suggest some organizations, have left the country’s park infrastructure in barely passable condition.

Earlier this year, the American Society of Civil Engineers gave the country a C- for the condition of its park infrastructure. It said states and local governments can’t keep up with recreational needs because of shrinking budgets.

The group pointed to federal data showing that the states had an $18.5 billion wish list for outdoor recreational facilities for which there is no money, including $523 million in Kansas and nearly $2 billion in Missouri.

South Carolina lists $155 million in deferred park maintenance. Texas estimates its backlog at somewhere between $400 million and $700 million, needing roughly $64 million every two-year budget cycle to maintain its system of more than 90 parks. This year, the state received $11 million from the Texas Legislature for capital improvements.

New York officials last year identified more than $1 billion in needed park work, including some sites where conditions were so bad that areas had to be roped off to protect the public. In some cases, amenities were closed off completely to ensure safety.

Last year, New York agreed to spend $89 million in park improvements, money that was used to attract private and federal funds for a total infusion of $143 million. It was billed as the the single largest sum of money spent on the state park system.

Illinois, meanwhile, this year started charging an extra $2 for license plate renewals to help battle a $750 million list of deferred maintenance at state parks.

Kansas reports a backlog of $26 million in needed maintenance at its 26 parks, many designed and built roughly 40 years ago.

The park system needs electrical upgrades to better serve snazzy new campers of the 21st century, replacement of aging open-air showers and rebuilding the beach at Clinton Lake.

A lot of work — replacing sewer lagoon liners for example — is largely invisible to campers. But it could ultimately prompt the closing of big swaths of a park or inconvenience campers if equipment breaks down.

“We’ve got some facilities that really need to be updated,” said Kansas Wildlife and Parks Secretary Robin Jennison.

But the state budget for the fiscal year starting Monday only appropriates $10.6 million for parks, of which $9 million comes from user fees and lottery proceeds. The state plans to use $875,000 for capital projects. The parks budget in 2007 was about $10.1 million, but it received about half its money at that time from general tax dollars.

No general state tax dollars are going toward Kansas parks this year, compared with $5.1 million in 2007.

Jennison is trying to wean the agency off of legislative appropriations and make it self sufficient without competing against other state needs.

“When you rely on general tax support … you do not have the stability of income to make those kind of long-range plans,” Jennison said.

For example, the agency arranged a deal to pay off cabins that were financed by the nonprofit group Kansas Wildscape Foundation, which raises money to help fund outdoors projects in Kansas.

In paying off the loan, the state gained access to an estimated $800,000 to $1 million in cabin fees that would otherwise have been committed to paying off the cabins.

The state also moved forward with a plan to sell annual state park passes at a $9.50 discount to drivers registering their cars.

Modeled after a similar plan in Michigan, the state hopes it can raise nearly $2 million more for parks by tapping into a broad base of potential park users who might be inclined to buy a discounted park pass when registering their car.

Jennison concedes the deferred maintenance list probably won’t be wiped clean during his tenure at the agency. But he thinks the public will be satisfied with the condition of state parks.

“The average person going to the parks — I don’t think they’re going to see it,” he said. “I think they’re going to see some parks that are in pretty good shape.”

But park visitors are pretty observant. They like the parks but see signs of wear and tear like wood benches in the showers that are decaying.

“They do an outstanding job with the facilities that they have to work with, but clearly the facilities are starting to show their age pretty seriously,” said Clinton Lake camper Richard Lee of Topeka.

In Missouri, Gov. Jay Nixon this year persuaded lawmakers to put $20 million more into parks.

“Investing in Missouri’s state parks today will help preserve our outdoor heritage,” Nixon told legislators earlier this year.

But even in a state that receives sales tax money dedicated for parks, there’s worry that Missouri is falling behind on its maintenance.

The state provided a list showing about $28 million in deferred building maintenance. Officials acknowledged it did not include other types of park infrastructure such as roads and sewers. The Missouri Parks Association said it has figures from the state showing the backlog at about $400 million.

Nagle attributed the money shortage to the state pulling its general tax funding after the introduction of a sales tax for parks in the mid-1980s.

Park supporters acknowledge that Missouri campers may not notice the aging infrastructure. But letting it go unattended risks that sections of a park could close if something malfunctions. They want the state to consider issuing bonds for upgrades.

“At least they can get started,” said Susan Flader, past president of the Missouri Parks Association. “The $20 million is going to be just a small amount of what remains there to be done.”

Federal judge refuses to block Kansas abortion rules

— The chief federal judge in Kansas refused Sunday to temporarily block parts of a new state abortion law, including a requirement that providers’ websites link to a state site with information they dispute.

But U.S. District Judge Kathryn Vratil’s ruling Sunday in a lawsuit filed by Planned Parenthood came after a state judge ruled Friday in a separate challenge that Kansas couldn’t enforce the website requirement for now. Vratil noted the previous ruling, in a case filed by two doctors, in concluding that Planned Parenthood would not suffer irreparable harm if she didn’t do the same. The rule was to take effect Monday.

Under the law, a provider’s home page will have to provide a link to a Kansas Department of Health and Environment site on abortion and fetal development and contain a statement that the state’s information is “objective” and “scientifically accurate.” Abortion providers object because the state’s information says that a fetus can feel pain by the 20th week of pregnancy, while the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists has said there’s no evidence for such an assertion.

Supporters of the new requirement contend it ensures that women who are considering abortions have access to multiple sources of information about fetal development, the risks of abortion and alternatives to it.

The website rule is part of a sweeping law approved by Kansas legislators this year that also bans sex-selection abortions, blocks tax breaks for providers, prohibits providers from furnishing materials or instructors for public schools’ classes and declares as a general policy that life begins “at fertilization.” Planned Parenthood didn’t challenge those parts of the law.

Abortion providers contend requiring them to declare that the state provides accurate and objective information on its website about abortion and fetal development violates their free-speech rights. Planned Parenthood is pursuing its federal lawsuit on behalf of a clinic in the Kansas City suburb of Overland Park that performs abortions and the clinic’s medical director.

Croatia joins the EU ¿ with half its youth out of work

  • Croatia has a population of 4.2million and overall joblessness rate of more than 20 per cent

  • They must wait until their country has been in the EU for seven years before they can take jobs in the UK

By Steve Doughty


Britain faces a further wave of unemployed migrants arriving from southern Europe, as struggling Croatia became the latest country to join the EU.

Croatia, which has a youth jobless rate of more than 50 per cent, became a member at midnight, meaning its citizens can travel freely to Britain from today.

The news comes as a major international survey revealed tens of thousands of southern European workers have been coming here since the start of the eurozone crisis.

The Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) report reveals numbers of migrants fleeing here from countries hit by the euro crisis are close to the 100,000-a-year mark.

Croatia became the latest country to join the EU

Croatia became the latest country to join the EU

Croatia has a population of 4.2million and overall joblessness rate of more than 20 per cent.

However Croatians must wait until their country has been in the EU for seven years, till 2020, before they can take jobs here.

Migrants fleeing Greece, Spain and Italy to look for work in Britain have almost doubled amid the the recession, the OECD said.

Spain and Greece’s emigration is more than twice the rate of 2007 and, it added, ‘the main countries of destination are Germany and the United Kingdom’.

Britain received 88,000 from southern European countries in 2011 and Germany 78,000.

Like citizens of Romania and Bulgaria – who will have the right to work in Britain from January – people from Croatia must wait until their country has been in the EU for seven years before they can take jobs in this country.

The report said: ‘As the debt crisis has followed on the heels of the financial crisis in a number of countries, the deteriorating labour market situation in some of them has resulted in an increase in the outflows of their nationals in search of work towards other OECD countries, which have been less affected, if at all, by the economic downturn and debt crisis.

‘This is especially true for the countries of southern Europe.’

The OECD’s International Migration Outlook report added: ‘The main countries of destination are Germany and the United Kingdom, with flows to these two having almost doubled in recent years and reached 80,000 or more.’

The OECD report has derived its count from national insurance numbers issued to overseas nationals in Britain.

However the official British figures for EU immigration are notoriously unreliable, since no checks are made on people coming into the country on EU passports, who enjoy the right freely to travel and work here.

The Office for National Statistics uses a survey, the International Passenger Survey, carried out among arrivals at ports and airports, to reach its estimates.


Croatian Prime Minister Zoran Milanovi, left, and President of the SDS party Janez Jansa at the ratification. A treaty concerning the accession of the Republic of Croatia to the European Union is ratified in the Slovenian National Assembly

Unemployment in Britain is low compared to levels in other EU countries. The jobless rate here is 7.8 per cent among those willing to work, compared to 27 per cent, more than a quarter of the workforce, in both Spain and Greece.

Youth unemployment in this country, among workers aged 16 to 24, is just over 20 per cent, compared to nearly 63 per cent in Greece and more than 56 per cent in Spain. Greece is suffering political unrest as well as deep economic hardship.

Sir Andrew Green of the Migrationwatch think tank said: ‘These numbers do not tally with British immigration numbers, but they do seem to be evidence that Germany and the UK are the main destination for workers from southern Europe as a result of the economic crisis.’

Croatia has gone through seven years of tortuous and often unpopular reform under Brussels instructions in order to become the 28th EU country while the eurozone remains deeply mired in crisis.

It has handed over more than a dozen Croatian and Bosnian Croat military and political leaders charged with 1990s war crimes by the United Nations tribunal for the former Yugoslavia in The Hague.

It has privatised shipyards, steeped in history and tradition but deeply indebted, and launched a high-profile fight against corruption that saw former prime minister Ivo Sanader jailed.

There remain concerns at the level of graft and organised crime. Croatian citizens get immediate freedom of movement rights across the EU, but have to wait through a seven-year period before they get free access to labour markets in Britain and other EU states with the most jobs on offer.

Citizens of Romania and Bulgaria, which joined the EU in 2007, have the right to work in this country from January. There are powerful signs that many thousands will take advantage of their new right to work in Britain.

The OECD figures, from national insurance numbers issued to overseas nationals, do not correspond with those from the Office for National Statistics.