|Tue, Oct 21, 2014 01:52 PM
|Wednesday, February 12, 2014 Issue
The Big Sandy News welcomes letters to the editor. To have your letter published, please follow these guidelines:
Letters should be limited to 300 words.
Letters- except those written to thank individuals-should focus on public issues, not on either private disputes or the individual religious beliefs of the writers.
Letters should not promote hate and bigotry. Neither should they be obscene or libelous or make personal attacks on individuals.
Letters must be signed and include a verifiable address and telephone number of the writers.
Letters should be delivered to our office at 115 Louisa Plaza, Suite 4 in Louisa Monday through Friday, 9:00 a.m. to 5 p.m., mailed to us at P.O. Box 766, Louisa, KY 41230 or faxed to us at (606) 638-9949. Letters may be e-mailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We reserve the right to edit letters for length, grammar, spelling and clarity.
Letters to the editor are the opinions of the writers and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of The Big Sandy News.
In conjunction with National Adult Education and Family Literacy Week, I want to share about an important effort underway in the commonwealth.
It's reported that in Kentucky, more than 750,000 adults don't have a high school diploma or GED credential. Nearly one in five Americans lack a high school diploma, and every year, 1 million more students drop out.
The statistics are sobering. People without a high school diploma or GED are twice as likely to be unemployed. They are likely to live in poverty, to become teen parents, to abuse alcohol and drugs. Three out of four prison inmates are dropouts.
Further, the gap between what our economy demands and the qualified workforce needed by the business community is vast and continues to widen.
Why do people drop out of school? And, why are some dropouts successful in returning to school and continuing their education against all odds?
As public media's leader in adult education service for more than four decades, these are questions KET wanted to explore more fully.
As part of the Corporation for Public Broadcasting( CPS)'s American Graduation initiative, KET was selected to produce the inspiring stories of Americans who had quit school, but are "dropping back in" and achieving success.
"Dropping Back In," a series of four, half-hour documentaries, premieres Oct. 6 at 9/8 p.m. on KET and will broadcast on PBS member stations nationally.
Through the programs, we come to understand the challenges faced by those who drop out. And, we learn about the individuals and institutions helping lead adult learners on the
path to college and career success.
Every community in America faces the challenge of adult drop outs and the need to improve college and career readiness. Each of us can play a role in helping individuals continue
their education, making our communities and our state stronger.
To find out about "Dropping Back In," or KET's new Fast Forward online study course for the national GED test, visit KET.org.
City, State: Friends of KET Board Member
September 16, 2014
On Saturday, Aug. 23, Safe Harbor celebrated its seventh annual Lobster Fest. Thank you to Safe Harbor's Board of Directors, Boyd County Medical Alliance, Susan Fried and her committee and our staff for a great event. A special thank-you also goes to our sponsors, whose continued support has helped Safe Harbor meet the growing need across the FIVCO ADD for domestic violence services.
This fundraiser will help us continue to meet the growing need for domestic violence services across the region. Again, thanks to all our supporters.
City, State: Executive Director
September 16, 2014
On behalf on the Rt. 23 Cultural Heritage Network, OSCAR, and "The Story Patch" committees, I would like to thank the following businesses, organizations, and individuals for their various sponsorships of "The Story Patch":
Paintsville Kiwanis (Platinum);
Pack & Butcher Law Office and McDonald's of East Kentucky (Gold);
Paintsville Funeral Home, Foothills Rural Telephone Cooperative, Inc., State Farm Insurance, Century 21 Unlimited Realty & Auction Services, Oil Springs Homemakers, and Johnson County Family and Consumer Sciences Council (Bronze); First Choice Realty, Hon. J. Kevin Holbrook, Junior Wright Auto Sales, and Han Dee Mart (Friend/Patron); Johnson County Extension Service, The Historic SIPP Theater, Paintsville Tourism, Kentucky Cooperative Extension Fine Arts Program, Appalachian Community Theater, The Paintsville Herald, Floyd County Times, K-Lite 94.7 WKLW, WSIP 98.9, Johnson County Chamber of Commerce, TOUR SEKY, and Debbie Tuggle Pendley, (In Kind).
Also, Michael Hall, Steve Sexton, Almeda Childers, Terry Salyer, Sandra Hall, cast, parents and grandparents of the cast and all other volunteers. We couldn't do it without you.
This play series made up of stories from local people helps preserve our local history and culture as well as to promote and support the arts. In addition, we hope to boost local tourism and fund community and economic development efforts by creating a new source of revenue earmarked exclusively for those goals. We intend to continue this play series annually, creating a new play using new stories each year.
You are in luck! A final run of"The Story Patch: Just Like Family" will be this week, Sept. 19 and 20 at 7 p.m. and Sept. 21 at 3 p.m. at OSCAR (old Oil Springs School). This will be a great opportunity to see the encore performance of this very entertaining play.
Vicki M. Rice
City, State: OSCAR Secretary/Story Patch Board Member
September 16, 2014
A benefit ride for Kennith "Head" Collins was held on Saturday, June 7, in Fallsburg. The event was a success, with a great group of riders and great prizes.
Special thanks to the following for making the day possible: Fallsburg Falls Cabins, Coke Plant, Hometown Florist, New World Video, Advance, NAPA, Papa Johns Pizza, Brenda Collins-Dawson, Icon, Ashland Cycle, Riverview Terminal "Hammer", Ntelos, Bobbie Layvill, Big Sandy News, Lori Jane, Connie and Kermit Collins, Amy and June Bug (Bowers), Italian Restaurant, Mexican Restaurant, Renee McKinney, Sonya Fitzgerald, G&R Pawn, Louisa Drug Store, Do It Best, Charlies Harley, William and Melody Smith, Tina Blevins, Rhonda Eby Martin, China Buffet, Dee Photography, Forever Clean, Sound Wave Productions, LLC., Jared and CJ Fairchild, Dakota Shortridge, Vintage Beauty Lounge, Dottie Horn, Kody Harles, Heritage Equipment, Alish Bentley, Brian Cassady, and last but not least, thank you to the riders and the community.
The Collins family can't thank everyone enough.
City, State: Fallsburg
June 17, 2014
The phrase "Love your neighbor" is found 10 times throughout the Bible. Jesus Himself said the only greater command was to love the Lord.
Early in 2013, we began a major renovation project at Paintsville Elementary School. At that time our Head Start program was relocated to the Mayo Campus of the Big Sandy Community and Technology College, and beginning in August of 2013 our kindergarten and first grade classrooms were also moved to the Mayo campus.
Because of construction, we were forced to close our playground and both of our staff parking lots. Our Lady of the Mountain School was gracious enough to allow our students the use of their front lawn for recess, and the First Baptist Church of Paintsville allowed our staff and parents to use their parking lots during the school day.
We in the Paintsville Tiger Family are extremely grateful to Big Sandy Community and Technical College, Our Lady of the Mountain School and the First Baptist Church of Paintsville for being such loving and generous neighbors. You have honored us, and for that we say, "Thank you!"
Bryan Auxier, Principal
City, State: Paintsville Elementary
June 10, 2014
We would like to thank everyone who was involved with making our benefit a success this past weekend. We wouldn't want to leave anyone out, we appreciate all who gave their effort to help out. Charlie Fyffe was instrumental in getting the community center for all of this to take place.
Thank you to the bands, Hammertowne, Turning Ground, and Larry Cordle and Lonesome Standard Time; to Dick Webb and Archie for all their help, and especially all the amazing people at Cordell Freewill Baptist Church; all the businesses for advertising and allowing posters to be posted in your stores. Also, all those who came out to show support at the Saturday night benefit.
To those who donated, your generosity was greatly appreciated. We also want to thank Larry Cordle as well as Miranda and Willis Napier for all their hard work with putting the show together. All help has been immensely appreciated. We are so incredibly blessed to have such a helpful community in our time of need.
Michael and Janie Cordle
City, State: Blaine, Ky.
May 27, 2014
My 78-year old mother has been a long-term Johnson County customer of Paintsville Utilities for city water. In approximately 30 years as a customer, she had paid her bill, in full and on time, an estimated 360 times. Recently she has been struggling with a myriad of health problems, including a stroke and a four-day emergency hospitalization for the treatment of a post-operative staph infection. During that time, she failed to pay her water bill of $22.09 amidst all the confusion of wound care, new medications, and recuperations. Twelve days after the due date, her water was turned off without any advance notice.
Paintsville Utilities' Delinquent Account Policy states in part: "At the conclusion of the 10th day of delinquency (the 25th of each month), utilities to the Customer shall be disconnected with meters being removed or locked and shall be classified as an inactive customer. No past due notices shall be sent to Customer to advise of the delinquency and/or of the intent to disconnect service."
This policy is ridiculously punitive. It makes no allowance for the challenges of life, such as illness, death, or job loss.
I understand that Paintsville Utilities is a business not a charity, but there should be some possibility of recognizing that sometimes there are extenuating life circumstances that temporarily interfere with the payment of one bill.
It would be much more fair and humane if a warning and notice of intent to disconnect were printed on the next month's bill with a shut-off date of the 15th of the month. This would not require employee time to call or issue notices of intent to disconnect and, therefore, would not incur extra expenses on behalf of Paintsville Utilities, it would only extend the window of payment opportunity by 20 days.
Had my mother had the opportunity to receive her second bill, she would have realized she had failed to pay the previous month, and would have corrected the oversight on her next payment. Now, due to current policy, she will have to pay an additional $40 to have her service restored.
A change in policy, such as that suggested previously, would give customers a limited opportunity to make things right and would avoid the use of personnel time and company resources to shut-off only have to turn back on water service within a matter of days. The suggested new policy would adhere to business principles but be tempered with an ounce of compassion.
City, State: Tutor Key, Ky.
April 08, 2014
We have had some wild weather this year with more to come. As we prepare for tornado season, let us not forget earthquakes and that we are on the biggest fault line in North America, the New Madrid.
We are on borrowed time as the last big one was 1813. The last of March and first week of April saw some back-to-back 5 magnitude quakes in Los Angeles; April 1, a 4.8 in Yellowstone Park; followed by an 8.2 in Chile and a 7.2 two days later.
Usually, you don't see quakes until around a five-day period of the full Moon. I assume since the Moon affects tides it has the same effect on lava underneath us causing it to move and do something to the plates.
April 15 is a full Moon and also a "Blood Moon," caused by an eclipse of the Sun and Earth making the Moon appear blood red. Don't know if it will be a "Bad Moon on the Rise," but it should be fun to watch for 77 minutes. It is also a Passover date. Interesting note is, this happened only three times in history — 1492, 1948 and 1967. What is more interesting is the Jewish people in 1492 were exiled from Spain, in 1948 they became a nation and in 1967 won the Six Day War in the Middle East.
If by a chance an earthquake does occur that date, head away from buildings as they could topple, avoid streets as gas lines do rupture with water lines, and seek higher ground. It's always good to look ahead. Hopefully, you will just observe a beautiful Moon instead.
City, State: Paintsville, Ky.
April 08, 2014
Raising Our Christian Kids (ROCK) held its first event, a Valentine's Dance, on Friday, Feb. 21, in Louisa. ROCK is a new group aimed toward home-school and private school children.
The group would like to thank the Lawrence County Extension office for the use of their facilities. Thanks to all the families who attended. Also, we would like to congratulate Ryan Carter, dance contest winner; and Virginia Slate and Sadie Gillum, box-decorating contest winners.
The next meeting of ROCK will be held Tuesday, March 11, at 6:30 p.m., at the Trinity Christian Academy, Louisa. The ROCK Book Club will meet at 6 p.m.
Lots of field trips and fun activities are being planned. Everyone is welcome to attend. For information, contact Jennifer Conn at 606-686-3627.
City, State: Louisa, Ky.
March 04, 2014
The members of the Johnson County Board of Education are an invaluable resource to Johnson County as advocates working for our children. I know firsthand of their focus and determination to provide every child an equal opportunity education. Johnson County board members take time each year to attend trainings acquiring knowledge regarding finances, curriculum, leadership, facilities, and many other topics to better serve both students and staff.
This community has many reasons to be proud: international academic championships, rising ACT and state assessment scores, district and regional athletic championships, increasing student attendance percentages and five representatives who devote their time and energy to help Johnson County Schools become recognized as a "Distinguished School District" one of only 25 in the state of Kentucky.
These are just a few reasons the Johnson County Board of Education members deserve our thanks during Kentucky's January observation of School Board Member Recognition Month.
I, along with the students and staff of the Johnson County School System, wish to express appreciation and gratitude to Bob Hutchison, Melvin VanHoose, James Doug Wright, Bruce Aaron Davis, and William Fraley for their years of dedication and service and I urge all residents of Johnson County to join us in expressing appreciation to these outstanding public servants.
Johnson County School Superintendent
January 28, 2014