- Special Sections
- Public Notices
A good start
Tom Perriello is off to a grand start as the new Congressional Representative for the 5th District of VA. He has already been back to many areas meeting with business leaders and local representatives listening to their concerns and looking for new ways to help the 5th. Tom has also been busy on Capital Hill. He has taken a seat on two committees, the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee and the Veteran’s Affairs Committee.
He has already co-authored his first bill, the College Learning Access, Simplicity and Savings (CLASS) Act. This bill will make it easier for “students and parents to claim tax credits for college expenses.” A cornerstone of his economic revival plan is workforce development and education and Perriello said in introducing his bill that Fifth District families need all the assistance they can get in this tough job market, and this bill will go a long way in helping those seeking more education and training.
Tom has also participated in a conference discussing Afghanistan at the U.S Institute of Peace. On the panel with Tom were General David Patraeus and Francesc Vendrell, the European Union Special Representative for Afghanistan.
Perriello, who served as an independent national security consultant in Afghanistan, praised U.S. troops for their campaign against Taliban forces but stated that if troops continue “to operate in a … toxic political environment, we will get nowhere.” He stated that we need to couple increased troop presence with what he terms an “accountability offensive,” which calls for anti-corruption efforts backed by the military.
We wish Tom all the best as he begins his new position and look forward to seeing him in and around the lake in the coming months.
Who will pay for the $1.2 trillion deficit?
Change, but it’s politics as usual.
With the swearing in of a new president on Jan. 20, I was wondering if President Obama would forgo his salary for the first year to show the rest of the country he was really serious about change. After all, he will be living rent free, at least for four years (good neighbors too), fly first class, have no car payments or gas bills and maybe not even have to buy dog food for his daughters’ puppy.
Perhaps he could persuade Congress to give back a percentage of their new pay raise to help the economy. It is about time that the people at the top started making some sacrifices.
And finally, if we could eliminate the graft and the “What’s in it for me” attitude in this country, we, the middle class taxpayers would be in much better shape.
Open enrollment for Medicare Advantage
The open enrollment period for Medicare Part D ended Dec. 31st. The next open enrollment will be Nov. 15- Dec. 31.
However we are currently in the open enrollment period for Medicare Advantage. Under Traditional Medicare a senior gets Medicare Parts A (hospitals) & B (doctors office visits) from the government and Part D (prescription drugs) from a private company. Under Medicare Advantage the senior gets Medicare Parts A, B, & D from a private company.
Currently many companies that sell Medicare Part D insurance are calling customers and encouraging them to switch to Medicare Advantage. Those who do so will often have their Medicare Part D premiums waived. The good news is that there are some excellent Medicare Advantage programs out there that offer better coverage than Traditional Medicare.
The bad news is that some offer less coverage. In 2007 I received a call from a lady who had switched to Medicare Advantage. She was in rehab recovering from a broken hip. Traditional Medicare pays for 21 days of skilled nursing. Unknown to her, the Medicare Advantage plan to which she had switched paid for only three days. She had been told by the nursing facility that she would have to leave the next day unless she started paying for her care. Fortunately she was able to call 1-800-MEDICARE and switch back to Traditional Medicare.
In 2009 she might not have been able to do this. As the law stands now, anyone who has been in Medicare Advantage for two or more years can no longer return to Traditional Medicare. This means that such a person is free to shop around for the best Medicare Advantage plan each year. But for the rest of their lives their Medicare coverage will be determined by a private company not by the government.
Because of this inability to return to Traditional Medicare, speaking only for myself, I would not go into Medicare Advantage. Those who choose to do so should only buy a policy after going over it benefit by benefit and comparing what it offers to Traditional Medicare. The better Medicare Advantage policies have booklets that do just that. Anyone feeling they, or a senior friend, have been pressured by a salesman into buying a policy they did not understand should call 1-877-772-3379 and report a case of Medicare fraud.
The last time I spoke in criticism of Medicare Advantage an insurance agent presented a rebuttal in the next issue of the paper. I certainly hope that will happen again if it needs to. The more we all know the better decisions we make.
Finally, I hope every senior citizen will send former President Bush a letter of thanks for the extension of Medicare to cover prescription drugs. While the system is far from perfect, it is also far better than having to pay full price for each prescription. Regardless of what anyone thinks of Mr. Bush, the fact is that Medicare Part D has saved seniors thousands of dollars and may go down as his finest accomplishment. He deserves our thanks for that.
Rev. Geoff Hubbard
Responding to the needs
Throughout the year, the Salvation Army in Bedford responds to the needs of Bedford residents who face unexpected challenges, crises, or emergencies.
We have purchased medication for individuals who suddenly lost insurance coverage, paid for gasoline to enable caregivers to take sick children to Charlottesville to see medical specialists, helped pay past-due rent when workers found themselves downsized out of a job, and made payments toward electric bills when car or home repair bills left families without the funds needed to pay the electric company. We have provided food boxes to individuals who have to choose between buying medication and purchasing food.
This assistance would not be possible without the efforts of the Bell Ringers who staff the Red Kettle during the Holiday Season. Almost all of the funds that are spent by the Bedford Service Unit of the Salvation Army are raised through the Red Kettle Campaign. For that reason, we are very grateful to the groups and individuals who take the time and make the effort to stand next to the Red Kettle each year and ring the bell to encourage donations to the Salvation Army.
We are especially thankful that the Bedford Rotary Club has taken the initiative to schedule volunteers and staff the Red Kettle each November and December. We also appreciate Wal-Mart for allowing volunteers to set up the Red Kettle in front of the store, and providing a safe place to store the Kettle and the donations. We additionally want to extend our gratitude to the employees of Wal-Mart who staffed the Red Kettle on Dec. 22.
Through the efforts of all of these compassionate and hard-working citizens, more than $3,000 will be available for the Salvation Army to assist families in need in Bedford.
Thank you for helping us “do the most good!”
Karen Hughes and Wanda Cooper
Bedford Service Unit, Salvation Army
Thank you for response
I would like to take this opportunity to say a great “Thank You” for all those who called or wrote me concerning the “Old Faces Old Places” photo.
When I submitted this photo I had no clue who the people were. Now I know that it is of Mrs. Bobbie Hensley and her children of Big Island. I am overwhelmed by the number of people that have contacted me. Mrs. Bobbie Hensley was such a joy to talk to, as well as other neighbors from the Big Island community. I will not try to list them all for fear of leaving someone out, but I have tried to write down the name of everyone that has contacted me. So far I have heard from 20 people.
It has been a blessing to hear from them all. In this day and time when we hear of so many sad and disappointing events, I feel it is wonderful to know that there are still some good, kind, caring people. Thank you for the way you reached out and shared of your loving memories. As we get older our memories mean so much.
Keep watching the paper as I’ve got some more pictures coming up. God bless you everyone.
Public school instruction
Our public schools were created by our founding fathers, our representatives, by the people for the people, necessary for the security of property, life and peace of society, an instruction to achieve that was, to teach the censures of the law and the denunciations of religion against immorality and crime. (Daniel Webster 1820)
The denunciations of religion do not elevate one religion over another, thus, does not violate the First Amendment. Thomas Jefferson and James Madison said that should the Judiciary make an error in their decisions, the Legislature (Congress) shall correct. Jefferson, as president was also the superintendent of schools. He had the students read the Bible in class.
In my opinion the U.S. Supreme Court, removing the 10 Commandments (denunciations) from Kentucky Public Schools was in error thus a legal matter for state legislatures and Congress. Because our representatives have not acted on behalf of the people, an unauthorized law making body has arose requiring not, the president to sign it into law. That body would be five members of the U.S. Supreme Court.
No state legislature nor Congress has made any attempt to correct the U.S. Supreme Court as to its decision to remove the Founding Fathers basis for denunciations out of the Kentucky schools. Because I live in Virginia, I cite the Virginia legislature at the time when the Court removed the denunciations out of the Kentucky schools, for not acting to renounce the Courts decision in our state of Virginia. I doubt if any Virginia school district can produce a document that its people voted for removal of the Founding Fathers instruction for property, life and peace of society.
Thus, today’s public school instruction has been, imposed upon us without our consent, removing that instruction which kept us safe at home and on the street. Yet we are taxed 60-75 percent of annual taxes for schools. If our state and federal representatives have aligned with the court decision of the 10 Commandments against the people who created government for the people, the people should be excused from school taxation, to place their child in a school that does teach our Founding Fathers instruction to ensure property, life and peace of society.
Walter F. Heydt