Letters 03/06/13

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A tax
    I would like to share my perspective on the impending Transportation bill awaiting your signature. My background is in engineering, thus I try to evaluate problems from an analytical approach. The one part of the bill that seems completely contradictory to existing Virginia code (law) pertains to the proposed $100 annual fee (tax) on hybrid vehicles.
    I will not cite the complete code regarding energy; however, I am listing a few specific line items to illustrate my point:
    § 67-101. Energy objectives.
    The Commonwealth recognizes each of the following objectives pertaining to energy issues will advance the health, welfare, and safety of the residents of the Commonwealth:
    6. Using energy resources more efficiently;
    7. Facilitating conservation;
    9. Increasing Virginia’s reliance on sources of energy that, compared to traditional energy resources, are less polluting of the Commonwealth’s air and waters;
    § 67-801. Efforts to increase CAFE standards.
    It is the policy of the Commonwealth to support federal action that provides for:
    1. An increase the CAFE (corporate average fuel economy standards for passenger cars and light trucks) standards from the current standard by promoting performance-based tax credits for advanced technology, fuel-efficient vehicles to facilitate the introduction and purchase of such vehicles; and
    2. Market incentives and education programs to build demand for high-efficiency, cleaner vehicles, including tax incentives for highly efficient vehicles. urge you to strike that portion from the transportation bill.
    The last line even mentions “tax incentives” as a means to promote the use of hybrid vehicles. Although the tax incentives have now expired for certain vehicles, it seems unreasonable to create law which is a “ tax disincentive." I applaud both Del. Kathy Byron and Sen. Steve Newman for opposing this bill and urge you to strike this item from the transportation bill.

Ronald Roseveare

    Your local chapter of the VT Alumni Association is seeking the involvement of local Hokies and friends or families of Hokies.  The chapter is involved in the community by hosting speakers, being involved in service projects, promoting the Hokie Nation and raising funds to distribute as scholarships to high school kids right in our community.
    In the next few months we will host David Carroll, the Virginia Tech Storm Chaser, at Trinity Ecumenical Parish, we will participate in Lake Cleanup by manning the drop off site at Gills Creek Marina, we will have a Wine Tasting and Auction at Blackwater Café and we will be planning for a beer tasting in the fall.  We also have social events including game watching parties.
    This chapter has been awarding scholarships for the past six years.  Twenty three students from Franklin County and Staunton River High schools have benefited from over $20,000 that has been distributed.  We raise money by accepting donations at our events  for sponsorships.  We have orange and maroon SML stickers and beer glasses available.  If you are already donating to the Virginia Tech Foundation, you can designate part of your donation to our chapter and it will go directly to local scholarships.
    Check out our Web site http://www.chapters.alumni.vt.edu/FranklinCo-SML/  and contact us at fcsmlhokies@yahoo.com to find out more and get involved.

Tom Curling
Chapter VP
Class of 1979

On gun control

    About the current push for gun control by our President; Vice President Biden said on TV that, “We should sign up for international gun registration”. Where did that come from?
    Think for a moment, international gun registration is foreign! Our forefathers/we the people state in our documents that all laws, rules, regulations come from the bottom up, never from the top down! Guns, swords, clubs, cannons, knives, assault and murder intentions were all studied and decided upon by our founding fathers.
    Public schools were created with the main lessons being ”The censures of the law and the denunciations of religion against immorality and crime.” It was a brilliant solution to immorality and crime! What succeeded year after year was good conduct and behavior!
    This month, March, the United Nations meet for their progress of gun control/small arms treaty. The first part is international gun registration. Second is gun confiscation. Consider its definition. The only ingredient, gun control, has nothing to do with conduct or behavior. It has to do with the U.S. Constitution, to tread upon it and suppress its citizens.
    Who said the following? “Guard with jealous attention the public liberty. Suspect everyone who approaches that jewel. Unfortunately nothing will preserve it but downright force. Whenever you give up that force, you are inevitably ruined.” —  Patrick Henry, 1788.

Walter Heydt