Mr. Barborak doesn't have an 'open mind'
To the editor:
I have been reading with great interest all of the hullabaloo from Nick Barborak about the recent passage of the state budget. Though Barborak doesn't realize it, money does not simply appear just because the government wants it to. He keeps bringing up budget cuts that were made two years ago yet makes no mention of why those cuts were made in the first place.
Just two years ago, when facing an $8 billion budget deficit that Ted Strickland created, the Democrats' only suggestion was their boilerplate response to everything: Raise taxes. Republicans disagreed. The budget hole was filled without raising taxes, and now, just two years later, residents of Ohio are actually seeing a net tax decrease.
Mr. Barborak also falsely claims that the budget raises property taxes on seniors and the disabled. In his world, spreading a false class warfare narrative trumps telling the truth any day. In reality, no seniors currently receiving the Homestead Exemption tax relief will lose it. But moving forward, the program will only benefit the people it was originally supposed to help: low-income seniors. Gov. Strickland expanded the program to people who didn't need it, and in doing so increased costs on taxpayers.
The same goes for the property tax rollback, which Barborak treats as some gift that the state charitably gives to landowners. What the tax rollback really did was increase government costs, which again were handed down to taxpayers. The Kasich budget restores fairness and transparency to the property tax system in Ohio. When the state covered the first 12.5 percent of property taxes imposed by local levies, all it was really doing was taking that much more money out of the hands of Ohioans prior to doling it back out. This cost was borne by people regardless of whether they owned property, including low-income seniors and, yes, even the disabled. After all, the government cannot distribute money until it first takes it from the people who earn it.
If Gov. Kasich and Republicans in the legislature really hated schools and local governments so much, then why would they have increased funding at all during this budget cycle? The difference is clear: No matter the reality, Democrats provide a laundry list of things that they say need funding. Their policies, however, make actually funding them in the long term impossible.
I recall Mr. Barborak stating that he intended to go to Columbus with an open mind. He was going to set partisanship aside. Work with both sides to get something accomplished for this county. So far all he has done is vote lock step with the state Democrat caucus, always preferring more spending and higher taxes as opposed to the alternative. Haven't we had enough of this out of Washington?
Salem graduation rate just not good enough
To the editor:
The new school year is starting and it's likely that some students won't be going back to school. I found some statistics that showed Salem has about a 90 percent graduation rate. Better than a lot of school districts, but not good enough!
Students drop out for various reasons. One survey found that 23 percent of dropouts cite lack of parental support as the reason for dropping out and that 21 percent dropout after becoming a parent. Parents need to support their kids with regard to school, but if you find that you are not getting that support, find someone that will support you ... the parents of a friend, a teacher, someone at church, etc. And please don't become a parent until after you've got that diploma.
If you are thinking about dropping out, do some research and see what that will mean financially and consider how many doors of opportunity will be closed to you. If you are still in high school or are younger, make a commitment to graduate with the best GPA you can. I've never met anyone who regretted finishing high school, but I don't know a dropout that hasn't regretted making that decision.
Former Salem resident
Proud Salem High grad amazed by work on Reilly
To the editor:
Reilly Stadium looks amazing! As I drive down Pershing Street in Salem and look at the work that has been done to Reilly Stadium I am proud to say that I am a Salem High School graduate.
The replica of the old ticket booth looks wonderful as it brings back many Friday night memories of long ago. Kudos to Karen Lehwald Carter and the many people who worked with her, for recognizing the need, and fulfilling the dream. A job well done!
SUSAN ANDERSON RILL ('64)
Fundraising dinner for Brendon was a success
To the editor:
The spaghetti dinner for Brendon Whitman was a huge success. It raised over $9,000, so not only can he get his blood test, it also leaves the family extra money for a lot of Brendon's needs.
It is amazing how this community came together for Brendon. The family wants to recognize and give a special thank you to Bonnie Rhodes, Alice Whitman, the Frenger family and Visiting Angels, for all of their hard work. Without them the benefit would of never happened.
They would also like to thank all of the businesses and individuals that donated items, money and their time.
Also, a big kudos to the VFW Post 892 and all the people who attended. Without everyone's generosity and hard work, Brendon would never be able to have this special test. The family thanks you from the bottom of their hearts.
THE WHITMAN FAMILY,
Salem Church Women United appreciative
To the editor:
The members of Salem Church Women United would like to express their thanks for the generous response to our annual Back to School Clothing Voucher Project.
Again this year over 400 Salem School District children from lower income families, from Head Start through eighth grade, were given vouchers to purchase new clothing and shoes for going back to school.
Our thanks is extended to individuals who gave financial donations, to Salem Community Foundation and The Pearce Foundation for grant monies, and Salem area churches for their donations. Thanks also to Emmanuel Lutheran Church for the use of their facilities. Thank you to all the volunteers for help with sign-ups. Thanks to the Salem News for its assistance in providing the necessary publicity to get the word out to those who needed it.
We also give a special thanks to Salem Walmart for being our project shopping center, for their kindness and professionalism.
May God bless the people of Salem for their generous support of our project year after year.
Social Concerns chairperson
We have a President who needs impeached
To the editor:
When first inaugurated in 2009, we had a President who by the apparent irrefutability of his own rhetoric was "historical," "transcendent," "post-political," and possessed the inherent ability to "slow the rise of the oceans," and with the aid of his loyal public relations department (e.g. ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR) has maintained this perception in the eyes of many Americans to this day. This sort of unconditional love for a public official, especially the President of the United States, is not only unfortunate but dangerous to a free society because the barrier to misbehavior is replaced with the incentive to continue such behavior, undetected.
Make no mistake, the media's "benefit-of-the-doubt" policy has emboldened the President to take steps unimaginable to any prior Oval Office occupant, as enumerated below:
We have a President who was held in contempt by a federal circuit judge for unconstitutionally bypassing Congress in his appointment of members to the National Labor Relations Board while Congress was still in session.
We have a President who willfully misled the nation about the nature of the Affordable Care Act, promising the law would "save the average household $2,500 per year" and that it would "not add a dime to the deficit," when in reality the law by its very nature dramatically raises costs to the consumer, as evidenced by an 88 percent rise in premiums in Ohio, and its revenue-neutral status was an illusion achieved via accounting gimmicks and deception.
We have a President whose EPA engaged in so-called "sue and settle" strategies, wherein the agency would collude with environmental organizations in filing frivolous lawsuits against oil and coal companies, dragging the trials out as long as possible, and finally reaching settlements after the companies incurred substantial litigation losses.
We have a President whose NSA, in clear violation of the Fourth Amendment, is conducting a domestic spying program by collecting the phone records, email accounts, credit card transactions, internet activity, and other electronic data of virtually every American citizen and storing the information away for future use.
We have a President whose heavily armed FBI raided the headquarters of Gibson Guitar Corporation for no apparent reason other than the company's CEO happened to be a contributor to the Republican Party.
We have a President whose Justice Department filed fraudulent affidavits to obtain the phone records of dozens of Associated Press reporters and journalist James Rosen, and after two courts deemed the affidavits wholly unworthy of search warrants, proceeded to go "judge-shopping" until receiving the answer they desired.
We have a President who funneled taxpayer money to his reelection campaign via federal grants to green energy companies, whose executives suddenly became major contributors to his cause before declaring their companies bankrupt just months thereafter.
We have a President whose Justice Department, unbeknownst to the government of Mexico, trafficked weapons to Mexican drug cartels that were used to slaughter hundreds of Mexican citizens as well as a U.S. border agent, and an Attorney General who was held in contempt of the U.S. House of Representatives for perjuring himself about his supposed lack of knowledge of the operation.
We have a President whose IRS systematically targeted, harassed, and intimidated decent American citizens for daring to voice their dissent to his policies.
We have a President whose administration for nearly three years singled out and targeted a Texas woman named Catherine Engelbrecht, founder of the organization True the Vote, in the following fashion: two personal audits by the IRS, two audits of her business by the IRS, two unexpected audits by the ATF, an audit by OHSA, another unexpected audit from the EPA, and six separate inquiries from the FBI. Five agencies from four different departments of this President's administration harassed an innocent woman for daring to raise awareness of voter fraud in this country.
We have a President who was illegally running guns from Benghazi to Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria, and once the shady operation imploded and four Americans were killed, proceeded to shame the office of the presidency by lying not simply to the nation but directly to the faces of the victims' families about the nature of their loved ones' deaths.
And finally, for the reasons stated above, we have a President who must be immediately impeached and removed from office.
Thanks for those backing the Back to School Bash
To the editor:
We, Edutech Corridor, held our first annual EduPalooza, Back to School Bash Education Fair on Saturday, Aug. 10, on Fifth Street in the downtown of East Liverpool. We had a great turnout and we think that for this being our first fair, it was a huge success! We would like to thank the community for coming out and supporting our efforts. We also would like to thank Jo Ann Bobby-Gilbert and The Review for covering the event.
We have some truly dedicated members who volunteered and assisted in the planning of the education fair, fund raising, advertising, and special events. We would like to thank the following members for their extraordinary contributions:
Casey Havens and Brandi Williams of QDA (Quaker Digital Academy). QDA and its staff is one of the newest businesses to locate in the downtown area. They went above and beyond the expected and were responsible for our receiving a $2,000 community grant from our local Walmart store. This grant made it possible in providing fun activities from OH-WOW Children's museum of Science and Technology of Youngstown as well as the (112) book bags filled with school supplies that were given to local students K-6th grade. QDA staff and their family members worked the day of the fair as well helping to man the Edutech Corridor Booth and hand out of the book bags and provided an indoor location for the Scholastic Book Fair.
Carolyn Grimes and Ciara Cicogna of OVCT (Ohio Valley College of Technology) for their work on the publicity committee. They prepared the booth rental packages as well as the press releases for the event. OVCT also held a drive for school supplies to be given out to local students in need. During the day of the fair the ladies from OVCT held a chalk art contest for the kids as well as face painting. The kids had a lot of fun at the OVCT Booth!
Connie Javens from First National Community Bank assisted on the vendor committee as well as manning the Edutech Booth and overall assistance with any task was needed. First National Community Bank also provided a fun money learning game for the local kids at their booth.
Rosemary Mackall, Robin Webster and the Lou Holtz Hall of Fame for their assistance on the publicity committee as well as the donation of free advertising.
Michele Marshall of MCTA (Mahoning County Training Association) for her assistance on the Vendor Committee. Mark Ciccarelli from EGCC (Eastern Gateway Community College) for his assistance the day of the fair.
A big "thank you" to each and every one of you! It is the dedicated members like you that make the success of any venture possible.
We would also like to thank the East Liverpool Fire and Police Departments as well as the State Highway Patrol and Tri-County Ambulance for their participation with special thanks to Jason Mitchell for arranging for Air Evac to land. Thank you to Gary Barton, ATA Martial Arts and Officer Chris Davis and K-9 Axle for providing the entertainment for the day!
Thank you to All Sports and Williams Graphics for providing services and to our Sponsors A&I Studio, QDA, OVCT, Walmart, J.P. Industries, JNV Construction, Legacy Studio, The Carriage House and Cedar Hills Golf Course as well as our vendors First National Community Bank, QDA, OVCT, EGCC, DRS, Boss, Kent, St. Al's, CCMRDD, Edutech, MCTA, Always Mindful Yoga and City Hospital, The Jolly Trolley, ATA Martial Arts, Doctor's on Call, Lincoln Park, E.L. Lions, ELHS Band Boosters and Casa De Emanuel.
We are lucky as a community to have the educational opportunities that surround us. From our local school districts, cyber schools, private schools, universities and colleges, we are well positioned to build a better community. Edutech Corridor was founded as a work group to open lines of communication between our educational providers with the intent to help them prosper as well as help with the economic development of our community. EduPalooza is an event that is designed to promote our community and help our students, at any age, be the best they can be. For more information about Edutech Corridor, please go to www.edutechcorridor.com.
Again, thank you all for making this first annual Edutech Corridor EduPalooza Back to School Bash such a success and we hope that we can count on you next year!
SCOTT D. SHEPHERD,
PENNIE L. ZEHNDER,