Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Health Care Bill passes Senate Finance Committee

The Senate Finance Committee passed a version of Health Care Reform yesterday, which moves President Barrack Obama's agenda of government run health care closer to reality. Politico reports that Republican Senator from the state of Maine, Olympia Snowe was the only republican to vote "yes" in the committee. Snowe stated, "I happen to think the consequences of inaction dictate the urgency of Congress to take every opportunity to demonstrate its capacity to solve the monumental issues of our time.” Of course, time and wisdom will tell if her action actually helps solve health care or make it worse.

This version of health care reform requires that all Americans have health insurance or else pay a fine of $1,500 per family, it also sets up for a health care co-op, and does not require employers to offer health insurance to its workers. Its version of health care reform has a price tag of $829 Billion dollars.

I still have issue with the government imposing a fine on those who cannot afford health care insurance, not even the government plans. It is wrong to take the money from them and not give them a health care plan in return for it. This is yet another example of why the government is only interested in revenue and not in the people.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Augusta County Board of Supervisors wastefull spending Alert!

The Augusta County Board of Supervisors will be hearing for the first time contract bids for new cellular phones and data cards for the county employees. The cost to the county taxpayers for the new phones and data cards is $46,158.84 per year. This doesn't include the initial cost for the phones and accessories, which include belt clip and vehicle accessories. There are more concerns with the quantity being requested, for instance the Parks and Recreation department is asking for two more phones and phone plans than it has employees.

Initially, the questions needs to be answered as to why the county needs new cellphones, apparently they already have them, along with desk phones with voicemail, and computers with county email addresses. Why the phone and for that matter why do they need a blackberry?
We have already heard from the county about our financial burdens and how short revenue is throughout the state, so how is there justification for this type of expense? This is to be on the agenda on Wednesday, October 14th 7pm a the government center in Verona. I encourage those who are concerned about this type of unnecessary spending to join me and others on Wednesday night as we voice our opposition to such an extravagance.

Francis Chester continues the fight.

Francis Chester appeared in court to represent the voice of over 10,000 Augusta residents in regards to their property tax assessments. He was defending his actions of petitioning the court in the matter against the Augusta County Board of Supervisors. County attorney, Patrick Morgan, questioned Mr. Chester in a loud voice while pounding on a table. The judge had to ask Mr. Morgan to quite down. The court case wasn't dismissed or concluded, rather the case is still active. At this point the county is being asked to draft a brief, or summary of events, to voice the Augusta County Board of Supervisors perspective in this matter. After that brief is reviewed Mr. Chester will have an opportunity to respond in a brief of his own. At that point the judge will consider the matter. Interestingly, no formal record of the events in court was taken. The court reporter never showed up. Fortunate, The News Leader, News Virginian, NBC 29, and area residents were on hand to take an account of the proceedings. The News Leader in their Thursday, October 1st edition all but patted Mr. Chester on the back saying that the county needs to allow the citizens to make their voices heard without fear. Their political cartoon is featured.