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September 24, 2009     Clinch Valley Times
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q Page 2 CLINCH VALLEY TIMES, St. Paul, VA, Thursday, September 24. 2009 Of shoes..and ships..and sealing wax..by Ann Young Gregory There's nothing like planning ahead! In case you haven't looked at your calendar this week, you may have missed the fact that summer's final day was Monday, and its departure wasn't particularly graceful. If you recall, it rained almost all day, and it was downright chilly in the morning and after the sun went down. Tuesday was the day of the autumnal equinox, so, at least theoretically (disregard- ing Daylight Saving Time), the day was half light, half dark. Since Tuesday, however, the days have been progressively shorter, and that will continue until December 21, which is not only as the first day of winter, but also is the turning point as far as daylight and darkness are concerned. Daylight begin to lengthen, and continues until June 21. So what does all that have to do with planning ahead? It's just that on an early September shopping trip, we encountered Halloween costumes. Then I noticed that grocery stores--even our great Farmers' Market--were displaying gorgeous pumpkins. To top it off, my church group had a Bake/Etc. Sale at the Farmers' Market on Sep-tember 12, and it included a table of decorative craft items for the Halloween ;eason! I guess the department stores have done it to us, or maybe television, or perhaps the Internet, but whoever/whatever began this early promotion of holidays that are months in the future has apparently infected us all. That's planning ahead with a vengeance! I began thinking about that whole situation--we don't seem to be able to have time to enjoy today, so busy are we preparing for tomorrow or next week or next month! I'm a firm believer in planning ahead, but there has to be a little time to stop and smell the roses! Even so, I realized something else that I've mentioned before, and I'm sure it's evident to everybody else who might be accumulating a few years! It's simply this: the older one becomes, the faster time seems to fly. Consider this, for example. (And my example is based on the fact that virtually everyone in the world-- except just a few of us--appeared so eager to welcome the second millennium A.D. that the celebration began as the clock neared 12 midnight on December 31, 1999, when actually, the first millennium didn't end until December 31, 2000! To prove my point, count to 100 starting with "one" since we don't have a year called "zero." You don't complete the century with the year 99, but with 100. The second century begins with the year 101! Anyway, few in the world acknowledged this, so, at least in the popular context, the second millennium began on January 1, 2000.) Have you thought ahead enough to realize that kind of means that we'll conclude the first decade of the second millennium in just fourteen weeks? Count 'em--2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, and so on until 2009. That's ten years! As good old Charlie Brown says, "Good griefl" : I don't know thatcopletingthe first decade of a new thousand years is relevant {although it won't really be completed until December 31, 2010), but for some reason, planning ahead for whatever Upcoming holiday is next (and next) appears to be a good thing. In that same context, then, consider Halloween Letters to the editor... Readers are invited to write letters on matters of general interest to the public Letters do not necessarily reflect the philosophy or editorial policy of this newspaper, which reserves the right to edit letters. The Clinch Valley Times will not print unsigned letters. Pizza Huts, Castlewood and Lebanon, Pizza Plus, St. Paul, Food City, St. Paul, Food Lion, Abingdon, RQses, St. Paul, McDonald's, Lebanon, Abing- don; Long John Silvers, Leb- anon, Save-a-Lot, Lebanon, KFC, Lebanon, Bonanza, Leb- anon, Clinch River Little League, Hardees, St. Paul, Burger King, St. Paul, Pepsi Cola, Norton, Castlewood Funeral Home, Castlewood, Kim Hill, ShaWn and Chance, God's Children, To the Editor: Ron Anderson, Minister, Fisher Bible Baptist Church would Auto Parts, Castlewood, New like to take this opportunity to Peoples Bank, Castlewood, Dry everyone who helped with Fork Freewill Baptist Church, than2knd our annual 'Change for God' Rose's management, Dave Gospel Singing. We would like Hileman and Angie Hileman. Richard Minton Bibl e Baptist Church PAWS meets every third I Thursday of the month, 6 pm at the Oxbow Center. to thank each preacher who stood  " and brought a message and each ' singer and singing group who , performed. It was a. blessing to !, all who attended. We would also '. like to send out a special thank ', you to all that donated and made l the event a success. They are: LATE BLOOMER...This vine covered with white blossoms is at the home of Josie Tudor on Gray Hill, St. Paul. Her son, Raymond Griffith, gave her the plant for Mother's Day. She waters it every day, and it has obviously thrived. The roots remain in the original flower pot. and get going! The stores are beginning to bulge, not only with costumes and decorations, but also with tons and tons of candy. (The holiday-and/or Valen- fine's Day--surely should be known either as the dentist's delight or the dentist's despair--depending on the point of view of the dentist. I remember the days long ago--before some evil person began doing dreadful things to apples and other non-packaged trick-or-treat goodies--when children visited only the neighbors on Halloween night, and mothers made decorated cupcakes or gooey candy apples or sugar cookies cut in the shapes of witches' hats and Caspar the Friendly Ghost. In those days, the typical trick-or- treat bag yielded a collection of wonderful goodies, filled with sugar, to be sure, but many items were also filled with the love that was put into them by those who made them! "Most of the costumes were home- made, too, and were much more attractive! Just three weeks and two days after we','ve observed Halloween by handing out sugar-filled treats to costume-clad children, we gather around the groan- ing family table for the United States' tribute to gluttony--and, one hopes, for prayers of thanks, as we celebrate Thanksgiving Day, I think it's a wonderfully healthy element of our lives that even in the middle of two wars and an economic disaster, we can gather to give thanks and to enjoy the bounty of our nation. An especially good wayto emphasize the thanks we give for what we have is to see to it that some others who don't have the same advantages, can also enjoy a groaning table. A check directed to one of our local food banks would go a long way toward sharing our good fortune. Plan ahead--and send the check early! Believe it or not, just four weeks later is Christ- mas Eve, and one day after that comes Christmas, and duringthose 29 days, the preparations and early observations fill up at least six weeks' worth of time. (I know that math doesn't work, but that's what it seems like, particularly if you plan ahead and see what all there is to do!) Shopping, addressing Christ- mas cards (I haven't even ordered mine yet, and this is one thing I almost always do in July), wrapping, decorating, cooking and baking, and, most important, participating in, or at least attending, as many as possible of the Christmas plays, musical programs, special dinners, and the church services of the season. They've already started working on a Chfistams play at our church--that's what I call really planning ahead! I try to accumulate a significant number of Christ- mas presents through the year, but this year, I have only a few. Perhaps writing this will motivate me to take my own advice, plan ahead and actually get everything done way ahead of time--and thus remove the panic that I so often generate within myself. Just short of a week later, of course, comes New Year's Eve, and then New Year's Day, and then, depending upon the way you calculate, we'll begin either the second decade of the second millennium A.D., or the last year of the first.decade of the second millennium, A.D. Whew. , , Whichever way you choose to figure when a decade or century begins and ends doesn't really matter much--it's how you spend that time, and how you plan ahead to spend it wisely. I'm going to try! CHANCELLOR PRIOR... (Continued f(om page 1) man Sharon Steele moved to asked that the res-ponsibility for rescind Councilman Kelly's that decision be turned over to appointment as police commis- Mayor Fletcher. There had ap- sioner. The motion was second- parently been a complaint about ed by Councilman Kilgore, and the idea. the vote was 4-1 with Kelly abstaining by silence. Voring in She also asked if the Town favor of the motion were Coun- Crew could cut brush around the cilwoman Steele and Council- Town sign on Route 58 just men Trent, Marshall and Hol- outside St. Paul (on the right as brook. Councilman Whitenack one enters the Town from voted against the motion. Castlewood). That will be done. Bob Harrison spoke to Coun-. She also initiated a discussion cil concerning a major pigeon problem on Broad Street. The matter was discussed, and con- tacting a control team from Virginia Tech is being consider- ed. Harrison also called the Council's attention to the Ap- palachian Arts Festival which will be held Saturday, and urged everyone to visit. The event, sponsored by the Town of St. Paul and St. Paul Tomorrow, will be held on Fourth Avenue between Broad and Russell Streets, and on Market Square. voted against the motion. Utilities Superintendent Earl Carter reported to Council that new state law requires either that the local water testing lab be certified or that a sample be taken daily, five days a week, to Wise for testing. The fee for certifying a lab is $600. Coun- cil, following discussion, ap- proved the expenditure and authorized Carter to proceed with the certification process. Under Old Business, Coun- cilwoman Steele discussed seve- ral items. Concerning making the alley one-way behind the J. Fred Matthews Memorial Lib- rary, she withdrew her motion to make the alley one way, and concerning car safety near the water tank if the roads are icy. Under New Business, Coun- cilwoman Steele said she had been to a Virginia Ma_i 9 Street program meeting in Manassas last week, and said we need to involve a number of people in the revitalization effort. She also asked that the Council take over responsibility for its Main Street Affiliate status, and that a mem- ber' of the Town Council attend at least two meetings per year. Council agreed. Councilman Marshall said se- veral traffic lines need to be replaced where repaving has been done or where lines have grown dim over time. Mayor Fletcher said he'll talk to VDOT about repainting the lines.. Council approved a resolu- tion urging the County to call for a county-wide referendum to be conducted concerning school consolidation. Present for the meeting were Council members Raymond Trent, Sharon Steele, Grant Marshall, Kenneth Holbrook, Blake Whitenack and Harry Kelly; Mayor Kyle Fletcher, Town Attorney Greg Kallen, Town Treasurer Debbie Baca; and several spectators. HOUSE APPROVES SINGLE LARGEST INVESTMENT IN COLLEGE AID IN AMERICAN HISTORY: THE STUDENT AID AND FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY ACT Families and individuals today too often face tremendous burdens in order to pay the costs of a higher education; and for too many a higher education is simply unaffordable. Yet in today's global economy, a college degree is more important to one's success than ever before and constitutes an essential starting point for many career choices and vocations. For these reasons, one of my highest priorities is making college more affordable for Southwest Vir- ginia's students. Throughout my service in Congress I have strong.ly sup- ported measures to increase federal funding for student loan and grant programs. I was pleased to support the College Cost Reduction Act in 2007, which cuts in half by 2011 the interest rates on need-based federal student loans. I am also pleased to report that last week the U.S. House of Represent- atives approved the Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility Act with my support. The measure makes the single largest in- vestment in aid to help students and families pay for college in history, and it accomplishes this at no cost to taxpayers. The Student Aid and Fiscal Responsibility. Act (SAFRA) will expand access to an af- fordable college education to more American stiadents, trans form early education opportune- ities, and enhance our out- standing community college system. The measure is also a major step toward achieving President Obama's initiative to make sure America once again leads the world in college graduates by 2020. The passage of the SAFRA will help build a stronger, more competitive American economy for the future while saving tax- payers money. Enabling young people to attend college or ob- Wise County The Wise County-Sheriff's Office reports the following activities for the period of 9/07/2009 through 9/13/2009. Wise Central Dispatch received a total of 1,264 calls for this seven- day period. Of the total calls received 340 were dispatched to the Sheriff's Office. Total number of Domestic calls for this period was 12. Criminal Process for the same period served 20 Felony Warrants, 85 Misde- meanor Warrants, 3 DUI Arrest and worked 0 Traffic Accident. tain career training is an es- sential step toward rebuilding the American economy and ensuring our work force remains the most highly skilled, cutting- edge and effective in the world. With the largest-ever invest- ment in higher education, this bill will significantly increase government grant and loan as- sistance for college tuition pay- ments. Pell Grants, already dist- ributed to more than 7 million students, will increase to $6,900 by 2019 from $5,350 today. SAFRA also keeps interest rates low on government-subsidized loans, makes substantial invest- ments in early childhood educa- tion, expands the Perkins low- cost loan program to every college in the United States, and simplifies the process of apply- ing for student financial aid. SAFRA will also reform the system of federal student loans to save the taxpayers $87 billion and will direct $10 billion back to the Treasury to reduce entitlement spending. SAFRA will change the way the student loan system functions by originating new loans through the government's Direct Loan program but will maintain com- petition among private lenders and non-profits to provide top- n9tch customer service for student borrowers. This simple change will make college loans more reliable for students and families - and ensure that loans operate in the best interests of borrowers by reducing many of the potential conflicts of interest that exist in the current loan system. Students are the key to our future, and we must prepare them for that future by ensuring college and career training pro- grams remain affordable for our region's families. I am pleased that the House has approved this significant investment in student aid. Sheriff's Report served "429 Civil Papers. 13uring this seven-day period 10 additional Criminal Investi- gations were initiated and 35 were cleared by arrest. The Sheriff's Office provided 192 man-hours of Court Room Security for the three courts. The Sheriff's Office tra'n- sported 2 adult in state, 0 adult out of state, 6 mental patient, and 5 juveniles for a total of 13 transports, involving 66 hours. The Sheriff's Office unlocked 1 vehicles and escorted 4 Civil process for this period funerals during this seven-day MEOC prograrff%ommended by VA House of Delegates Mountain Empire Older Citi- by providinjz them with a flexi' zeus received a Commendation tle schedule, use of an agency from the House of Delegates on vehicle and training. August 28, offering congratula- tions for MEOC's recent Bever- ly Foundation Senior Transpor- tation Service Award. This a- ward recognizes the employ- ment of a mobility manager, the development of a volunteer dri- ver program and MEOC's com- mitment to developing and maintaining a seamless and co- ordinated transportation system for all ages. Delegate Terry Kilgore pre- sented the Commendation to Mobility Manager Nicky Flee- nor and Executive Director Marilyn Pace Maxwell on Sep- tember 15, at MEOC's offices in Big Stone Gap. Maxwell said, "We are thankful that Delegate Kilgore and the Virginia House of Dele- gates continue to recogn, ize and support the work and mission of MEOC and those we serve. We were very pleased to receive the Beverly Foundation's Star A- ward, one of only ten programs honored nationally. The General Assembly's acknowledgment of this achievement is deeply appreciated by MEOC." MEOC's Volunteer Driver Program, funded by the Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation's New Freedom Initiative, seeks volunteer dri- vers who are at least 21 years of age to provide transportation to consumers in the Lee, Scott and Wise county area. MEOC will accommodate volunteer drivers Children invited to UVa-Wise Funtasia Money raised during Funta- sia is used to purchase coats, clothes and toys during the holi- day season for children in need. In the case of inclement wea- ther, the event will be moved to Darden and Zehmer halls. For more information, call Sandra Richardson, 276-328- 0187; or Linda Davidson, 276- 328-0184. Characters from classic children's books and popular animated television shows are all part of this year's Funtasia at The University of Virginia's College at Wise on Saturday, September 26. Funtasia, sponsored by the Student Virginia Education As- sociation and the Student Go- vernment Association, begins at noon in the Betty J. Gilliam Sculpture Garden and ends at 4 p.m. Fantasia boosts literacy by encouraging children to read and enjoy a good story. The event features games, activities, food, prizes, inflatables and a silent auction for storybooks. Admission is free, but most games cost 50 cents. An adult must accompany children. If you are interested in volun-, teering with the Volunteer Driv- er Program, call Nicky Fleenor, Mobility Manager, at 276-523- 7433 for more information. 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