It has been more than a year since I have talked to Skeeter Skates, owner of Skeeter's Tree Stump Removal and Plow Repair in greater metropolitan Pooler.
One of the most widely debated topics today is health care. Between physicians and patients, the dialogue is markedly louder. In an ideal world, physicians successfully could manage their patients' individual health, based on years of medical training using prescribed treatments determined by examinations, appropriate tests, diagnoses and patient histories.
The Georgia General Assembly was not officially in session last week; however, work still took place on behalf of the people. With only three days remaining of the 2011 legislative session, several items still are on the agenda. The No. 1 priority is the passage of the upcoming budget for Fiscal Year 2012. In addition to the budget, numerous other highly publicized and debated issues have yet to pass this session, including tax-reform legislation, the local option for Sunday sales of packaged adult beverages and immigration legislation.
Celebrating "Georgia Cities Week" is an annual event that recognizes the importance of and contributions by local government to its citizens. Cities throughout the state will celebrate during the week of April 17-23, and Richmond Hill is no exception.
A couple years ago, officials in Georgia thwarted an alleged plot by a group of third-grade special-education students to kill their teacher. According to the story, various versions of which were published by news outlets and websites across the state, administrators at Waycross' Center Elementary School learned of the plan when a student told authorities about it.
This week I got several e-mails from various associations encouraging me to become a vegetarian ... to swear off meat. I didn't read too far into any of them because it ain't gonna happen. And besides, I was taught not to swear.
The glaring exception in Georgia's lobbyist disclosure requirements is not the kind of thing for which any state should want to be singled out. Yet Peggy Kerns, director of the Center for Ethics in Government at the National Conference of State Legislatures, told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution she knows of no other state where that exception applies.
Much has happened since the Georgia Board of Education unanimously adopted the Common Core State Standards Initiative. Both a new governor and new state school superintendent have come on board, and we will receive a $400 million Race to the Top grant to help improve our public schools.
Buried beneath all of the political ploys and nearly 14 trillion dollars of debt are members of the United States military and their families, all deeply concerned for their futures.
Just hearing the words "dependent exemption," "itemized deductions" and "tax credit phase out" makes most of us want to run screaming to our friendly CPA for help. As policy collides with politics in the tax debate, these concepts have moved to center stage.
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, commonly referred to as ObamaCare, was signed into law March 23, 2010. More than one year later, the law remains unpopular with the public and a core fiscal concern for many voters, while many are learning just how intrusive the government mandates are.
Let's dip into the mailbag today, boys and girls, and see what is on the minds of discerning readers.
The 2011 legislative session of the Georgia General Assembly is close to the finish line, with only three days of session remaining.
Day 34 (March 28): This morning I found myself right back where I left off the week before, in front of the House Judiciary Committee where I was presenting S.B. 36, the prescription drug monitoring bill. This is one of the toughest committees in the legislature and, while they have made major revisions to my bill, I am glad that it passes out and will now be in the House Rules Committee.
Dear Editor: An afternoon tea party – just what every girl loves. You wear fancy dresses, pretty hats, lavish jewelry, extravagant shoes … oh, and of course don't forget the tea. This is what you will take pleasure in at the Pearls and Purses Afternoon Tea Party benefiting the Richmond Hill YMCA's Priceless Gifts Campaign from 1 to 4 p.m. Sunday at the Richmond Hill City Center.
I happen to love the song "Happy" from the movie soundtrack, "Despicable Me 2."
Most mornings, I spend about five minutes pulling my freshly washed hair into a ponytail. It's easy, it's efficient, and, I like to tell myself, it's even chic. When I know I'll be meeting important people or attending special events, however (like, say, the United Way annual campaign kick-off party or a chamber of commerce breakfast), I break out the products and utensils and spend an extra 20 minutes or so coaxing my locks into what I hope is a more professional-looking style.
I've always been one of those persons who won't hire someone to do something for me if I can do it myself, such as painting my house, building a deck, building a utility barn, caring for my own lawn, installing new flooring, etc. It was just the way I was raised. And it stuck.
Editor, This is an open letter to Attorney General Eric Holder.
Editor, It seems like we just cut the ribbon to our new location at 154 Thunderbird Drive. Our brand new 10,000 square foot facility seemed so BIG next to our little white building on 10055 Ford Ave. Site 3B, where the YMCA had resided in for the previous 10 years. We moved with excitement, added more equipment, larger classes, and exciting new family programs.
I'm not sure how many wilderness survival shows there are on television right now, but it appears there is some kind of obsession going on with this type of programming. And they are running the gamut from being naked in the wild to being fat in the wild. That's right, there's a show now titled "Fat Guys in The Woods." Fortunately, they keep their britches on.
• President Ronald Reagan, Jan. 30, 1984: "Exports create and sustain jobs for millions of American workers and contribute to the growth and strength of the United States economy. The Export-Import Bank contributes in a significant way to our nation's export sales."
Win at life! Isn't that what we all want to do? That is the headline gracing one of the magazines sitting on our coffee table. I guess the real question is, "what defines winning at life?" After all, life has a pretty broad playing field. Maybe what best defines winning in life is society's dire need to be in control. Everyone values their independence and sense of control, right?
Editor, Recently, I've spotted some news headlines - around the region, state and country - that I never thought I'd see. It really makes me wonder, "Whatever were they thinking?"
Editor, The following is an open letter on sequestration to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, from retired U.S. Army Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, head of the Association of the United States Army:
Remember the story of "The Little Engine That Could"? That could well describe the city of Dalton, a town of some 34,000 nestled in the corner of northwest Georgia, not far from the Tennessee line.
Lately, I've been thinking about the treasure trove that can be found in life's challenging times - the wisdom, the victories, the emotional muscle built and, of course, the stories. As those who know me well often say with a smile, "It's always about the story with her."
I realize, perhaps better than anyone, that it's not polite to ask others about their reproductive plans. I've long ranted about how much it annoyed me when friends, family members and even perfect strangers would inquire about a possible plunge into parenthood. Even now, as most of my readers know, I get aggravated when people ask whether my 2-year-old daughter, Reese, will ever be a sister.