Perry Township trustees need to look at insurance costs
To the editor:
I read with interest the article on Nov. 26 of Ms. Cope-Weaver's investigation of insurance coverage for Perry Township trustees and the fiscal officer. She makes many good points.
If Ms. Weaver's figures are correct about the premiums paid for full insurance coverage of these employees than I would propose something needs to be done to either lower them, have employees pay part, or do away with coverage.
It also seems wrong that the township is paying for spousal coverage. Most employers pay for the employee and the employee pays the additional cost for their spouse or family. I am not for canceling anyone's insurance however, the premiums that are being paid, if the figures are correct, are ludicrous, especially given that Mr. Mix and Rudibaugh are covered by Medicare.
I myself am covered by Medicare and pay for a supplement myself. I would question why it is costing $1,046.74 for Mr. Mix and $1,030.17 for Mr. Rudibaugh per month when I pay the Medicare premium of $117 and the supplement premium of $96 per month.
That's quite a difference isn't it? I would also question why the township is paying for dental coverage for employees? In all my years of employment this was an option that the "employee" paid for if he/she wanted it. It should also be noted that not many employers provide life insurance coverage at no cost either.
We should all question why these premiums are so high, especially in this day of economic crisis everywhere. As stated in the article, many places are eliminating paid insurance coverage so asking employees to contribute perhaps 20 percent of the premium costs might not be out of line.
The Perry Township employees all do a fine job and seem to have the best interests of the township at heart so I would ask them to take a good look at the insurance costs and see what can be done to lower them or contribute like others have to do who are lucky enough to have insurance.
Responds to editorial regarding guns, those with mental illness
To the editor:
I am responding to the following statements in the Nov. 19 Salem News editorial: "Firearms don't really kill people. Often, however, mentally ill people do."
The facts are:
Approximately 4 percent of gun deaths annually in the United States can be attributed to people with mental illness.
Approximately 10 percent of people with mental illness commit an act of violence at some point in their lives.
The editorial references Attorney General DeWine's statement that an individual killed in a gun battle with police in Yellow Springs, Ohio, never received mental health treatment which might have prevented his death. Although not the only reason, one reason people do not seek or accept treatment is stigma.
People are afraid to acknowledge they have a mental illness; friends and loved ones react with fear. The false image of the typical person with mental illness as "out of control and dangerous" is the single largest contributor to stigma. This image is fed by the media.
The mental health system can benefit from and improve as a result of media scrutiny and commissions such as the one Attorney General DeWine is proposing. The system also benefits when stigma is reduced.
I believe the media has a responsibility when reporting or commenting on the mental health system to report the facts about the relationship between violence and mental illness.
Columbiana County MHRS Board
Caring Hands Food Ministry an option for holiday giving
To the editor:
Are you or your organization/business planning or looking to make the perfect charity for that year-end (tax write-off) contribution? Please take a moment and consider Caring Hands Food Ministry.
We are a local food pantry that operates out of East Palestine. We began this wonderful venture in March 2011 and each year we have grown tremendously.
This year our average number of people we helped averaged 750 per month. Each month this nonprofit pantry works diligently to hand out enough food, personal products and paper products for a family to last them 10 days. This is a great undertaking.
Are these people lazy? Are they people that don't want to work? No. The majority of the people we help are people not so different from you and I. Most people in America, particularly in our area, are only two paychecks away from needing the kind of help we give.
Hard times can befall on us at any given moment for no good reason, and that can alter your entire life. These are people that work, but don't make enough to make ends meet. These are our senior citizens that don't bring in enough money and they must choose between food, medications and utilities. These are our beloved veterans that need a helping hand.
Caring Hands Food Ministry operates 100 percent on donations. Our pool of volunteers are some of the best. They use their own gas and cars to pick up items, they give of their time and of their energy. We have no overhead expense.
Every penny donated goes directly to feed the needy. We don't pay anyone to run the pantry, nor do we pay for advertising or solicitors.
Are there other means of help for these people in our area? Yes. We have a few local pantries that do their best, but are very limited. Some only hand out food every three months, Caring Hands feels we all deserve to eat every day of the month. We strive to hand out monthly, with no restrictions other than income guidelines. We have no boundariesif you are hungry and qualify by the income guidelines, Caring Hands is going to try and help.
So we are asking you to consider your year- end charitable donation and would like you to ask yourself this question. "Can I truly make a difference with my donation?" The answer is yes.
Something to consider:
This is a list of the top 10 worst charities in America. These charities raise millions of dollars each year. Below is the percentage of the money raised that actually went to the supposed cause.
1. Kids Wish Network (2.5 percent)
2. Cancer Fund of America (0.9 percent)
3. Children's Wish Foundation International (10.8 percent)
4. American Breast Cancer Foundation (5.3 percent)
5. Firefighters Charitable Foundation (8.4 percent)
6. Breast Cancer Relief Foundation (2.2 percent)
7. International Union of Police Associations (0.5 percent)
8. National Veterans Service Fund (7.8 percent)
9. American Association of State Troopers (8.6 percent)
10. Children's Cancer Fund of America (5.3 percent)
So what we are asking of you is this: consider keeping your charitable donation close to home. Help those that just might be your neighbor, your children's friends, that elderly couple down the block from you.
You can come to the pantry the first Monday of each month, anytime between noon and 2 p.m., and witness the outpouring of love, humility and sacrifice. Our pantry day is a most humbling experience. You can witness people working side by side with one common goal - feeding the hungry in our own county and neighborhood.
The pantry is faced with a difficult decision as we enter into 2014. The amount of people we help each month has increased so much, that we are faced with choosing to cut down on what we hand out each month or cut back on the number of people we help. It is a decision that is heartbreaking for us.
If you find that you would like to make a donation or support this pantry on a monthly basis, please call 330-426-3270 or checks can be mailed to Caring Hands Food Ministry 1141 state Line Road, East Palestine, Ohio. We will make sure you get a receipt for your taxes.
Any and all contributions are appreciated and please know 100 percent of those donations will go to feeding the needy.
As we enter into this holiday season, I would like to wish each of you and your families Happy Thanksgiving and a very merry Christmas. May God bless you.
Caring Hands Food Ministry
Appreciative of those putting together Veterans Day program
To the editor:
I want to thank all those who had a part in putting together the program at 8 a.m. Monday, Nov. 11, Veterans Day at the West Branch High School auditorium. It is always a wonderful presentation.
It is rewarding to see the school (other schools also) teaching our students about what some of our community men and women have done to preserve the freedom that enjoy today.
Mrs. Biery, such a nice presentation of your DVD, thank you for your time and effort. The young lady, Audrey Nolte, a superb job of singing "God Bless America" and the Young and Alive's rendition of "Amazing Grace." The band's presentation was great also.
The district should be proud of our school. Make it a point to attend the assembly next year, you will not be disappointed.
Crestview athletic director grateful for East Palestine's help
To the editor:
Oftentimes the rivalries between the schools in our area go beyond the playing field, extending to coaches, parents, and even school faculty.
But recently, Rick Istnick and Cindy Dunn displayed generosity that transcended school boundaries, and I'd like to take this opportunity to publicly thank them.
As one of the athletic directors at Crestview, it was my pleasure to help coordinate the practice schedule for our team as they prepared for their playoff games. The teams we faced were tough, but our athletes were able to hold their own, advancing to the regional finals and that is in part due to Rick and Cindy.
As Crestview does not have a turf field or access to one such facility, I reached out to East Palestine to inquire about the use of their turf field. Despite the rivalry between Crestview and EP, and the fact that Crestview was able to make it further into the postseason than East Palestine, these two administrators didn't hesitate to allow the Crestview team to utilize their facility. This kindness allowed Crestview some much-needed turf time, and reminded me of the importance of sportsmanship.
While head-to-head in a game, the other team is always pegged as the "bad guys."
But these "bad guys" turned out to be good guys. It's crucial that we remember that the teams we're playing against are made up of people, not just faceless opponents. It's people like Rick Istnick and Cindy Dunn who make the world of high school sports better, and their example ought to be followed more regularly.
In sportsmanship we thank you.
Crestview athletic director
Obamacare:?Most destructive anti-American law passed
To the editor:
Just what did it take to get Obamacare passed anyway? Americans should remember just how many rules, standards, and traditions had to be twisted or bulldozed in order for the [UN] Affordable Care Act to become law.
Rogue prosecutors had to break all sorts of rules in order to secure the conviction of Alaska's U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens.
The Democrats also had to succeed in flat-out stealing the election for a Minnesota-based U.S. Senate seat from Republican Norm Coleman. Remember the infamous Cornhusker Kickback and Louisiana Purchase agreements, the big payoff for votes.
Harry Reid had to play parliamentary hardball (and Mitch McConnell had to let him get away with it) in order to force the key vote on initial Senate passage before the Senate left for Christmas break of 2009.
Then the Senate had to pull other procedural rabbits from its hat, in order to make up for not letting the House originate a revenue-raising bill (tax), and to make up for the loss of Massachusetts' Senate seat to Scott Brown. Chief among these was taking an orphan House bill and stripping everything from the bill but the number, replacing the entire text with the text of Obamacare. There are quite a few more but you catch my drift.
Fast forward and Obamacare is the single most destructive anti-American law passed. The Democrats are desperate and they got to put the fix in before the elections.
Obama needs to appoint judges that know what's best (social justice/engineering), not follow the law. Harry Reid has just ended parliamentary procedures (nuclear option) voiding the Republican senators from debate of post nominees and that stifles (shuts the mouth) of the American citizens those senators represented.
These are blatant acts of a conspiracy to undermine the law of the land, replacing it with one party rule. America isn't a Democracy it is a Representative Republic, at least it was a week ago, but it is now one party rule.
WILLIAM E. EARDLEY,