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Page 2 CLINCH VALLEY TIMES, St. Paul, VA, Thursday, January 3, 2013 a L. Of shoes..and o Back in the-good old days BT (that&apos;s "before television"), any. moving pictures we had of the news of the world came. to us at movie theaters by way of newsreels, whi.da were as integral a part of a movie program as the.,cartoon and previews. One of those series of newsreels was called, if I'm not badly mistaken, "Tim& Marches On." That's why the way we do things--almost ALL things--today take a little getting used to b ]geople who are around my age who remember thoe':d'.@s--and compare them to now. Other than.;fil! photographs in newspapers and magazines, th,e'.qn!y pictures we had of World War II, for instance, ,ere in movie theater newsreels, meaning that lat we saw had happened at least a week earlier, and usually several weeks. News from the Korean War was, by and large, transmitted to us virtually the same way we received World War II news. It was totally different during the Vietnam War, with television.pictures made available to us of what had happened the day before, or sometimes even on the very day we were seeing it. Today, of course, the news is even inore current than that, with soldiers in Iraq and Afghmistan and all around the world c0mmunicating-Ma computer (using e-mail and voice messaging) "bn. a daily basis and television newspeople "eledded" in troop units. Time, in this case, rely h_h.._, "marched on! Today we get instt news! " Another way-time has marched on--and on and on---can be credited to (or blamed on) inflation. We bought our ve.first house in 1961. It was on a new street in a new.subdivision in Lexington, Kentucky. It had three bedrooms, a dining area, a large living room and a built in'ttitehen, and we paid a total of $13,225 for it. While w were shopping for that house, we also looked at one .that carried a price tag of a little over $18,000, but 'vce innocently thought at that time that we would pr6bibly never be able to afford a house that cost that much! Of course since then, we've had several cars "hich cost considerably more than that first house--and we buy modest domestic cars nothing luxuro*g! Of you could compare what a loaf of bread or qum3,0f milk (nobody--at least nobody I knew--boughCmilk in gallons in those days), or, and this is one of the obvious ones--what a gallon of gasoline cost: 1Sack in the middle of the twentieth century to wliO We're paying today. Of course, what you paid for a-ilon of gas this morning may not be the same as what, I had to pay for a gallon of the Same brand this afternoon, but that's just the way somebody's fiurfed how to do it in 2012! But even ote distressing than the speed with which we get,the,news of the world, or the amount we have to pay for.a house or a car or a loaf of bread is the toll that the=March of Times has taken on morals in this country; lind apparently, around the world. To be really alarmed about the moral decline, rememb}er what happened to theonce wortd, dinating, Roman :Empire. Although it was routinely attacked, its ""decline and-fall" carn,e primarily from decaying morals within'raher than from foreign enemies. Our nation.-is suffering from this kind of moral decline at its..15ighest levels. When I first heard on the news several yr s ago that the United States was MAYOR'S MESSAGE... (Condnuedfro'pge 1) original design of a larger plant facilities and equipfat: This before Dominion opted out of would include anothg3avilion, the sewer plant project. ,Dora- recently approved o by the inion will be responsible for all Council, to be locafd"near the testing of the comingled site playground area. We lso plan to renovate the currmt-r.stroom facilities and lociie'a new restroom facility neltfie stage area. I would like to,-sbe land- scaping and improved viewing of the river, as well fi kpansion for the skate park. , ( - The Mayor aud Town Council have discussed" plans to renovate the swim'fniiig pool. These plans include !eUer lights, sandblasting the pool rcsealing and painting, as we).as reno- vating the restroom facility. We plan to purchase additional pool furniture and equipment to finish the upgrade. The St. Paul Police Depart- ment has improved our patrol car fleet with the purchase of a ships..and sealing wax..by Gregory Time Marches On using torture to extract information from political prisoners, I didn't believe it. That's just not what we do. How can we--and especially how can our leaders--even consider abandoning the democratic values that have held us together with such strength for so long? But on the other hand, marijuana, cocaine, LSD, heroin, and all the derivatives thereof are "just not what we do" in the Untied States, either, yet look at the problems that we've had with drugs for decades. As we all know, those problems aren't just in our large cities, but in most of our smallest towns and villages, as well. When I enrolled as a college freshman in 1952, I was told that in order to spend the night somewhere other than in my dormitory room (such as, in my case, with my friend Tillie, who lived in Lexington), I must first have specific parental permission to stay there, wherever "there" was, and I must sign out for the specific night. If those rules weren't obeyed, the day after anyone showed up from an unauthorized night out, she was sent home--for good. When Peyton enrolled (same place) in 1982, parents were told that residents of the girls' dorms were asked to sign out if, they planned to spend the night somewhere else, but that signing out wasn't a requirement (and prior. parental permission wasn't even mentioned). And that ' was 30 years ago! Let me use a movie star story to illustrate the point about moral decline. Ingrid Bergman, born in Stockholm, Sweden, was an actress who achieved, considerable success in Swedish films. She was signed by David O. Selznick in 1939 to star in the ' English language version of Intermezzo, a film which ' she had made in Sweden three years earlier. The  film--and Bergman--were a huge success. She was in a number of vastly popular films, including the classic, Casablanca, and over her career was nominated for seven Academy Awards, winning three. Her popularity remained enormous--until 1950. That was the year that she traveled to Italy to make the movie Stromboli, directed by Roberto Rossellini. She had an affair with Rossellini, and gave birth to a son. Her husband sued her for desertion and won--and Bergman married Rossellini. That didn't help her a bit, however as her fans completely turned their backs on her and her movies--nearly dared her to retum to the U.S. In 1952, she had twin daughters (Isabella Rossellini, an actress and model, and Isotta Ingrid Rossellini). But she did return to the U.S., to make the picture Anastasia, for which she won her second Oscar. She seemed finally to have been forgiven by most of her American fans. She and Rossellini, incidentally, were divorced by this time. Compare the public's reaction to her affair to the public's reaction to similar situations today. Nobody now seems to care how, or with whom, today's stars live or have relationships. Even worse, many everyday young people who are not in the limelight adopt the same lifestyles, and these habits, too, are accepted. Time does indeed March On, but since it insists on doing so, doesn't it seem to you that the country should be getting better instead of worse? required by DEQ and Fish and Wildlife. St. Paul, Castlewood Water & Sewer, and Wise Cou- nty PSA will now be parti- cipating in the Regional Waste- water Treatment Plant Project to construct a 500,000 gpd sewer plant. This plant will be easily expandable to 750,000 gpd if needed for future growth. The Council will be con- sidering approval of the low bid for renovation of our seven water tanks sometime in Jan- uary. The repair on the water tanks will likely begin in early spring, as weather allows. This project was made possible by a grant from the Virginia Depart- ment of Health. Winter conditions are here new car and through * working and everyone should beware of with our neighbors fn Russell driving conditions, home heat County to receive a reworked and safety, and should any Vehicle from their department.' person or family feel they may These additions greall,'nhance have living conditions that our ability to respond to emer- endanger their life or property, gencies and broaden our patrol please make sure you have contacted the St. Paul Police Department so you can be added to the alert list, allowing the officers to check on your home and personal status during ad- verse conditions. Throughout the new year there will be new items and ideas that can be considered for improvement to our town. I strongly believe in an open coverage of St. Paul. The State of Virginia has directed that all law enforcemerit ag'nces shall be required to change their radio communications to a higher band width. The St.,Paul Police Department will c6rnpl), with that directive. The Town of St. )aaul and Dominion Virginia Power have reached an understanding on the this message by saying that the town government and police department, street department, water and sewer department would like to wish our citizens a very prosperous New Year. Miyor Kyle Fletcher issue of a new seer plant, government and providing our After opting out of paxticipation taxpayers an insight to town in the new sewer plant, Dom- plans, future concerns, and I will inion will apply for thbir own always welcome input regarding VPDES permit and "St. Paul will ' the town and local development seek a municipal minor. VPDES at any time. I would like to end permit. Dominion "will- be re- sponsible for pre-treatment and send their effluent directly to the diffuser owned by tfTown of St. Paul. The Town of St. Paul ..... and Dominion have negotiated a cash settlement for redatl of the diffuser and costs;re.late d to the Coffee Time at Library Every Wednesday at 10:00 Visit with your friends, talk about the news goirrg on in the area, read the local newspapers or browse through our magazine selections. Make plans to come by the library each Wednesday for coffee and conversation. For more information contact the library at 276-762-9702. a.m. the J. Fred Matthews Memorial Library will host Coffee Time for all area senior citizens Seniors are invited to stop by the library from 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and have a cup of coffee, tea, cider, or hot chocolate and light refreshments. MORE NEW SIGNS...This is one of the new signs installed at the Farmer's Market. It was made by Jerry's Signs. Over the holidays, honoring those who strengthen America " by Secretary Viisack United States Department of Agriculture As Americans celebrate the holiday season, we have a chance to catch up with family and friends, count our blessings and reflect on the year behind us. Looking back on 2012, I am proud of those across rural America who stayed resilient in the face of disaster. They mana- ged farms, ranches and Main Street businesses through a re- cord drought, an historic hurri- cane, and more. Ultimately, their hard work kept the momentum of rural America going strong. i'm thankful for the thou- sands of men and women who, year in and year out, step up to serve our nation. I know that many of these military servtce members come from our small towns and rural communities - and that no matter where they're from, each is a hero to our nation. They're stationed around the world today and many will spend their holidays away from family and friends, so that we can be safely at home with ours. I am further grateful at this time of year for the service and sacrifice of our 22 million American veterans - more than 6 filing period for Hispanic and women past Claims farmers and ranchers who claim discrimination at USDA opened 9/24/12 -Those Eligible Must File Claims No Later Than March 25, 2013- wards achieving that goal. In February 2012, the Secretary announced the Pigford II settle- ment with African American farmers, and in October 2010, he announced the Keepseagle settlement with Native American farmers. Both of those settle- ments have Since received court approval. Unlike the cases brought by African American and Native American farmers, the cases filed by Hispanic and women farmers over a decade ago were not certified as class actions and are still pending in the courts as individual matters. The claims process provides voluntary alternative to continu- ing litigation for Hispanic and female farmers and ranchers who want to use it. Audio and video public ser- vice announcements in English and Spanish from Secretary Vilsack and downloadable print and web banner ads on the Hispanic and women farmer claims process are available at: http://www, usda.gov/wps/portal/ usda/usdahome?contentidonlv=t rue&contentid=PSAs - Print and WebBanner Ads.xm AgricUlture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that Hispanic and women farmers and ranch- ers who allege discrimination by the USDA in past decades can file claims between September 24, 2012 and March 25, 2013. "Hispanic and women far- mers who believe they have faced discriminatory practices from the USDA must file a claim by March 25, 2013 in order to have a chance to receive a cash payment or loan for- giveness," said Secretary Vii- sack. "The opening of this claims process is part of USDA's ongoing efforts to correct the wrongs of the past and ensure fair treatment to all current and future customers." The process offers a vol- untary alternative to litigation for each Hispanic or female farmer and rancher who can prove that USDA denied their applications for loan or loan ser- vicing, assistance for discrimi- natory reasons for certain time periods between 1981 and 2000. As announced in February 2011, the voluntary claims process will make available at least $1.33 billion for cash awards and tax relief payments, plus up to $160 million in farm debt relief, to eligible Hispanic and women farmers and ran- chers. There are no filing fees to participate in the program. The Department will con- tinue reaching out to potential Hispanic and female claimants, around the country to get the word out to individuals who may be eligible for this program so they have the opportunity to participate. Call center representatives can be reached at 1-888-508- 4429. Claimants must register for a claims package (by calling the number or visiting the website) and the claims package will be mailed to claimants. All those interested in learning more or receiving information about the claims process and claims packages are encouraged to attend meetings in your communities about the claims process and contact the website or claims telephone number. Website: www.farmerclaims.gov Phone: 1-888-508-4429 Claims Period: September 24, 2012 - March 25, 2013 Independent legal services companies will administer the claims process and adjudicate the claims. Although there are no filing fees to participate and a lawyer is not required to parti- cipate in the claims process, persons seeking legal advice may contact a lawyer or other legal services provider. Under Secretary Vilsack's leadership, USDA has" instituted a comprehensive plan to stren- gthen the Department as a model service provider and to ensure that every farmer and rancher is treated equally and fairly as part of "a new era of civil rights" at USDA. This Administration has made it a priority to resolve all of the past program class action civil rights cases facing the Department, and this announce- ment is ariother major step Jo- ! USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877- 8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay vmce users). million of whom live, work and'2 raise their families in rural ' America. Finally I am heartened that so many Americans stand up during the holidays to help those who are struggling. Volunteer. from our smallest towns to ouS biggest cities are helping ensurt'2 that no one goes hungry over th.2 holidays - especially our chil 2 They're making sure th<: dren. everyone has a warm place tO';" sleep. They're working hard t 2 make sure every family has th,-Z2 chance to have a special holida 2 celebration. - '2 I hope that everyone who-i%- able will give some of their tim during the holidays, and beyond[,;.-r" because every minute we give! strengthens the resilience of our- nation. . - As we celebrate the holida season, we have much to b thankful for. I hope that you' join me in saying "thank you" t those who keep us going stron as a nation- from the brave mefl and women defending ouTr, freedom around the world, to the" volunteers who strengthen ottS communities here at home. =--4 Wherever you are during thi$2 time of year, I wish you ', special happy.and safe holiday.  Clinch Valley Times MEMBER VIRGINIA PRESS ASSOCIATION Published weekly in St. Paul, VA 24283, by the CLINCH VALLEY PUBLISHING CO., INC. The Clinch Valley Times serves the four-county area of Wise, Russell, Dickenson and Scott, with offices and plant located in the CLINCH VALLEY TIMES building, 16541 Russell Street. Perio- dicals postage is paid at the Post Office in St. Paul, VA. 24283. Ann Young Gregory Editor Allen Gregory Advertising Susan Trent Adv./Graphics ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS: In advance: $28.50 in Wise and: Russell counties; $30.00 in other 24- zip codes; elsewhere, $32.50. POSTMASTER: send address changes to: Clinch Valley Times, P.O. Box 817, St. Paul, VA 24283 SINGLE COPY - 50c Classified Advertising: Minimum charge, $6.00 for up to 20 words, in advance; 25c per word after 20 words. Display Advertising rates on application. Periodicals publication Postal ISSN: 767600 Page 2 CLINCH VALLEY TIMES, St. Paul, VA, Thursday, January 3, 2013 a L. Of shoes..and o Back in the-good old days BT (that's "before television"), any. moving pictures we had of the news of the world came. to us at movie theaters by way of newsreels, whi.da were as integral a part of a movie program as the.,cartoon and previews. One of those series of newsreels was called, if I'm not badly mistaken, "Tim& Marches On." That's why the way we do things--almost ALL things--today take a little getting used to b ]geople who are around my age who remember thoe':d'.@s--and compare them to now. Other than.;fil! photographs in newspapers and magazines, th,e'.qn!y pictures we had of World War II, for instance, ,ere in movie theater newsreels, meaning that lat we saw had happened at least a week earlier, and usually several weeks. News from the Korean War was, by and large, transmitted to us virtually the same way we received World War II news. It was totally different during the Vietnam War, with television.pictures made available to us of what had happened the day before, or sometimes even on the very day we were seeing it. Today, of course, the news is even inore current than that, with soldiers in Iraq and Afghmistan and all around the world c0mmunicating-Ma computer (using e-mail and voice messaging) "bn. a daily basis and television newspeople "eledded" in troop units. Time, in this case, rely h_h.._, "marched on! Today we get instt news! " Another way-time has marched on--and on and on---can be credited to (or blamed on) inflation. We bought our ve.first house in 1961. It was on a new street in a new.subdivision in Lexington, Kentucky. It had three bedrooms, a dining area, a large living room and a built in'ttitehen, and we paid a total of $13,225 for it. While w were shopping for that house, we also looked at one .that carried a price tag of a little over $18,000, but 'vce innocently thought at that time that we would pr6bibly never be able to afford a house that cost that much! Of course since then, we've had several cars "hich cost considerably more than that first house--and we buy modest domestic cars nothing luxuro*g! Of you could compare what a loaf of bread or qum3,0f milk (nobody--at least nobody I knew--boughCmilk in gallons in those days), or, and this is one of the obvious ones--what a gallon of gasoline cost: 1Sack in the middle of the twentieth century to wliO We're paying today. Of course, what you paid for a-ilon of gas this morning may not be the same as what, I had to pay for a gallon of the Same brand this afternoon, but that's just the way somebody's fiurfed how to do it in 2012! But even ote distressing than the speed with which we get,the,news of the world, or the amount we have to pay for.a house or a car or a loaf of bread is the toll that the=March of Times has taken on morals in this country; lind apparently, around the world. To be really alarmed about the moral decline, rememb}er what happened to theonce wortd, dinating, Roman :Empire. Although it was routinely attacked, its ""decline and-fall" carn,e primarily from decaying morals within'raher than from foreign enemies. Our nation.-is suffering from this kind of moral decline at its..15ighest levels. When I first heard on the news several yr s ago that the United States was MAYOR'S MESSAGE... (Condnuedfro'pge 1) original design of a larger plant facilities and equipfat: This before Dominion opted out of would include anothg3avilion, the sewer plant project. ,Dora- recently approved o by the inion will be responsible for all Council, to be locafd"near the testing of the comingled site playground area. We lso plan to renovate the currmt-r.stroom facilities and lociie'a new restroom facility neltfie stage area. I would like to,-sbe land- scaping and improved viewing of the river, as well fi kpansion for the skate park. , ( - The Mayor aud Town Council have discussed" plans to renovate the swim'fniiig pool. These plans include !eUer lights, sandblasting the pool rcsealing and painting, as we).as reno- vating the restroom facility. We plan to purchase additional pool furniture and equipment to finish the upgrade. The St. Paul Police Depart- ment has improved our patrol car fleet with the purchase of a ships..and sealing wax..by Gregory Time Marches On using torture to extract information from political prisoners, I didn't believe it. That's just not what we do. How can we--and especially how can our leaders--even consider abandoning the democratic values that have held us together with such strength for so long? But on the other hand, marijuana, cocaine, LSD, heroin, and all the derivatives thereof are "just not what we do" in the Untied States, either, yet look at the problems that we've had with drugs for decades. As we all know, those problems aren't just in our large cities, but in most of our smallest towns and villages, as well. When I enrolled as a college freshman in 1952, I was told that in order to spend the night somewhere other than in my dormitory room (such as, in my case, with my friend Tillie, who lived in Lexington), I must first have specific parental permission to stay there, wherever "there" was, and I must sign out for the specific night. If those rules weren't obeyed, the day after anyone showed up from an unauthorized night out, she was sent home--for good. When Peyton enrolled (same place) in 1982, parents were told that residents of the girls' dorms were asked to sign out if, they planned to spend the night somewhere else, but that signing out wasn't a requirement (and prior. parental permission wasn't even mentioned). And that ' was 30 years ago! Let me use a movie star story to illustrate the point about moral decline. Ingrid Bergman, born in Stockholm, Sweden, was an actress who achieved, considerable success in Swedish films. She was signed by David O. Selznick in 1939 to star in the ' English language version of Intermezzo, a film which ' she had made in Sweden three years earlier. The  film--and Bergman--were a huge success. She was in a number of vastly popular films, including the classic, Casablanca, and over her career was nominated for seven Academy Awards, winning three. Her popularity remained enormous--until 1950. That was the year that she traveled to Italy to make the movie Stromboli, directed by Roberto Rossellini. She had an affair with Rossellini, and gave birth to a son. Her husband sued her for desertion and won--and Bergman married Rossellini. That didn't help her a bit, however as her fans completely turned their backs on her and her movies--nearly dared her to retum to the U.S. In 1952, she had twin daughters (Isabella Rossellini, an actress and model, and Isotta Ingrid Rossellini). But she did return to the U.S., to make the picture Anastasia, for which she won her second Oscar. She seemed finally to have been forgiven by most of her American fans. She and Rossellini, incidentally, were divorced by this time. Compare the public's reaction to her affair to the public's reaction to similar situations today. Nobody now seems to care how, or with whom, today's stars live or have relationships. Even worse, many everyday young people who are not in the limelight adopt the same lifestyles, and these habits, too, are accepted. Time does indeed March On, but since it insists on doing so, doesn't it seem to you that the country should be getting better instead of worse? required by DEQ and Fish and Wildlife. St. Paul, Castlewood Water & Sewer, and Wise Cou- nty PSA will now be parti- cipating in the Regional Waste- water Treatment Plant Project to construct a 500,000 gpd sewer plant. This plant will be easily expandable to 750,000 gpd if needed for future growth. The Council will be con- sidering approval of the low bid for renovation of our seven water tanks sometime in Jan- uary. The repair on the water tanks will likely begin in early spring, as weather allows. This project was made possible by a grant from the Virginia Depart- ment of Health. Winter conditions are here new car and through * working and everyone should beware of with our neighbors fn Russell driving conditions, home heat County to receive a reworked and safety, and should any Vehicle from their department.' person or family feel they may These additions greall,'nhance have living conditions that our ability to respond to emer- endanger their life or property, gencies and broaden our patrol please make sure you have contacted the St. Paul Police Department so you can be added to the alert list, allowing the officers to check on your home and personal status during ad- verse conditions. Throughout the new year there will be new items and ideas that can be considered for improvement to our town. I strongly believe in an open coverage of St. Paul. The State of Virginia has directed that all law enforcemerit ag'nces shall be required to change their radio communications to a higher band width. The St.,Paul Police Department will c6rnpl), with that directive. The Town of St. )aaul and Dominion Virginia Power have reached an understanding on the this message by saying that the town government and police department, street department, water and sewer department would like to wish our citizens a very prosperous New Year. Miyor Kyle Fletcher issue of a new seer plant, government and providing our After opting out of paxticipation taxpayers an insight to town in the new sewer plant, Dom- plans, future concerns, and I will inion will apply for thbir own always welcome input regarding VPDES permit and "St. Paul will ' the town and local development seek a municipal minor. VPDES at any time. I would like to end permit. Dominion "will- be re- sponsible for pre-treatment and send their effluent directly to the diffuser owned by tfTown of St. Paul. The Town of St. Paul ..... and Dominion have negotiated a cash settlement for redatl of the diffuser and costs;re.late d to the Coffee Time at Library Every Wednesday at 10:00 Visit with your friends, talk about the news goirrg on in the area, read the local newspapers or browse through our magazine selections. Make plans to come by the library each Wednesday for coffee and conversation. For more information contact the library at 276-762-9702. a.m. the J. Fred Matthews Memorial Library will host Coffee Time for all area senior citizens Seniors are invited to stop by the library from 10:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and have a cup of coffee, tea, cider, or hot chocolate and light refreshments. MORE NEW SIGNS...This is one of the new signs installed at the Farmer's Market. It was made by Jerry's Signs. Over the holidays, honoring those who strengthen America " by Secretary Viisack United States Department of Agriculture As Americans celebrate the holiday season, we have a chance to catch up with family and friends, count our blessings and reflect on the year behind us. Looking back on 2012, I am proud of those across rural America who stayed resilient in the face of disaster. They mana- ged farms, ranches and Main Street businesses through a re- cord drought, an historic hurri- cane, and more. Ultimately, their hard work kept the momentum of rural America going strong. i'm thankful for the thou- sands of men and women who, year in and year out, step up to serve our nation. I know that many of these military servtce members come from our small towns and rural communities - and that no matter where they're from, each is a hero to our nation. They're stationed around the world today and many will spend their holidays away from family and friends, so that we can be safely at home with ours. I am further grateful at this time of year for the service and sacrifice of our 22 million American veterans - more than 6 filing period for Hispanic and women past Claims farmers and ranchers who claim discrimination at USDA opened 9/24/12 -Those Eligible Must File Claims No Later Than March 25, 2013- wards achieving that goal. In February 2012, the Secretary announced the Pigford II settle- ment with African American farmers, and in October 2010, he announced the Keepseagle settlement with Native American farmers. Both of those settle- ments have Since received court approval. Unlike the cases brought by African American and Native American farmers, the cases filed by Hispanic and women farmers over a decade ago were not certified as class actions and are still pending in the courts as individual matters. The claims process provides voluntary alternative to continu- ing litigation for Hispanic and female farmers and ranchers who want to use it. Audio and video public ser- vice announcements in English and Spanish from Secretary Vilsack and downloadable print and web banner ads on the Hispanic and women farmer claims process are available at: http://www, usda.gov/wps/portal/ usda/usdahome?contentidonlv=t rue&contentid=PSAs - Print and WebBanner Ads.xm AgricUlture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that Hispanic and women farmers and ranch- ers who allege discrimination by the USDA in past decades can file claims between September 24, 2012 and March 25, 2013. "Hispanic and women far- mers who believe they have faced discriminatory practices from the USDA must file a claim by March 25, 2013 in order to have a chance to receive a cash payment or loan for- giveness," said Secretary Vii- sack. "The opening of this claims process is part of USDA's ongoing efforts to correct the wrongs of the past and ensure fair treatment to all current and future customers." The process offers a vol- untary alternative to litigation for each Hispanic or female farmer and rancher who can prove that USDA denied their applications for loan or loan ser- vicing, assistance for discrimi- natory reasons for certain time periods between 1981 and 2000. As announced in February 2011, the voluntary claims process will make available at least $1.33 billion for cash awards and tax relief payments, plus up to $160 million in farm debt relief, to eligible Hispanic and women farmers and ran- chers. There are no filing fees to participate in the program. The Department will con- tinue reaching out to potential Hispanic and female claimants, around the country to get the word out to individuals who may be eligible for this program so they have the opportunity to participate. Call center representatives can be reached at 1-888-508- 4429. Claimants must register for a claims package (by calling the number or visiting the website) and the claims package will be mailed to claimants. All those interested in learning more or receiving information about the claims process and claims packages are encouraged to attend meetings in your communities about the claims process and contact the website or claims telephone number. Website: www.farmerclaims.gov Phone: 1-888-508-4429 Claims Period: September 24, 2012 - March 25, 2013 Independent legal services companies will administer the claims process and adjudicate the claims. Although there are no filing fees to participate and a lawyer is not required to parti- cipate in the claims process, persons seeking legal advice may contact a lawyer or other legal services provider. Under Secretary Vilsack's leadership, USDA has" instituted a comprehensive plan to stren- gthen the Department as a model service provider and to ensure that every farmer and rancher is treated equally and fairly as part of "a new era of civil rights" at USDA. This Administration has made it a priority to resolve all of the past program class action civil rights cases facing the Department, and this announce- ment is ariother major step Jo- ! USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer. To file a complaint of discrimination, write: USDA, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Ave., SW, Washington, DC 20250-9410 or call (866) 632-9992 (Toll-free Customer Service), (800) 877- 8339 (Local or Federal relay), (866) 377-8642 (Relay vmce users). million of whom live, work and'2 raise their families in rural ' America. Finally I am heartened that so many Americans stand up during the holidays to help those who are struggling. Volunteer. from our smallest towns to ouS biggest cities are helping ensurt'2 that no one goes hungry over th.2 holidays - especially our chil 2 They're making sure th<: dren. everyone has a warm place tO';" sleep. They're working hard t 2 make sure every family has th,-Z2 chance to have a special holida 2 celebration. - '2 I hope that everyone who-i%- able will give some of their tim during the holidays, and beyond[,;.-r" because every minute we give! strengthens the resilience of our- nation. . - As we celebrate the holida season, we have much to b thankful for. I hope that you' join me in saying "thank you" t those who keep us going stron as a nation- from the brave mefl and women defending ouTr, freedom around the world, to the" volunteers who strengthen ottS communities here at home. =--4 Wherever you are during thi$2 time of year, I wish you ', special happy.and safe holiday.  Clinch Valley Times MEMBER VIRGINIA PRESS ASSOCIATION Published weekly in St. Paul, VA 24283, by the CLINCH VALLEY PUBLISHING CO., INC. The Clinch Valley Times serves the four-county area of Wise, Russell, Dickenson and Scott, with offices and plant located in the CLINCH VALLEY TIMES building, 16541 Russell Street. Perio- dicals postage is paid at the Post Office in St. Paul, VA. 24283. Ann Young Gregory Editor Allen Gregory Advertising Susan Trent Adv./Graphics ANNUAL SUBSCRIPTIONS: In advance: $28.50 in Wise and: Russell counties; $30.00 in other 24- zip codes; elsewhere, $32.50. POSTMASTER: send address changes to: Clinch Valley Times, P.O. Box 817, St. Paul, VA 24283 SINGLE COPY - 50c Classified Advertising: Minimum charge, $6.00 for up to 20 words, in advance; 25c per word after 20 words. Display Advertising rates on application. Periodicals publication Postal ISSN: 767600