Commentary

Wed
24
Nov

Op-Ed: Dated work regulations are hurting Louisianans

Louisiana is the land of great food, good music, ample natural resources, and resilient communities that come together in times of both challenge and celebration. Unfortunately, Louisiana is also a land of extreme government licensure regulations that limit work and entrepreneurship.

This problem dates back many decades, but the worst growth in licensure has occurred in the last 30 years. Louisiana has added more new licenses in that time than any other state. The result: more than 22% of jobs require a license in Louisiana. And some of them are truly ridiculous, like our unique requirement that florists be licensed. Seriously. You need a license in Louisiana to trim flowers and put them on wedding tables. These licensure boards act like cartels, controlling supply and crushing competition.

Wed
24
Nov

America Needs Thanksgiving

America has been through a tough time. A national election separated friends and family, divided churches and took over our media. We’ve been intoxicated with poisonous rhetoric and toxic street gatherings that led to more division, injuries and even death.

Americans horrifically viewed the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer and said we aren’t going to take that anymore.

Over 762,000 people have died from Covid-19 in America. Over 47 million of us have been sick. Families who have buried loved ones don’t need convincing about the realities of Covid-19. Americans who have spent weeks in hospital intensive care units know they are fortunate to be alive. However, in the midst of America’s pandemic nightmare, Americans have debated with each other over vaccinations, masks, school and business closures. We have watched our businesses suffer. Our government’s finances have been further strained to supply money to hurting unemployed people.

Thu
18
Nov

Schroder asks all to be aware of unclaimed funds

Schroder asks all to be aware of unclaimed funds

State Treasurer John M. Schroder

Editor:

Readers of your newspaper should find extra value in reading your paper today when the State Treasurer’s Office will publish the names of individuals for whom we received new, unclaimed property money in the preceding year.

The State Treasurer’s Office is holding more than $900 million in unclaimed funds for current and former Louisiana residents. We are responsible for getting this money back into the hands of citizens to whom it belongs. Whether it was 10 days ago, or 10 years ago, this is their money and we will hold it for them until they claim it.

Common examples of unclaimed property include unpaid life insurance benefits, forgotten bank accounts, uncashed payroll checks, stock dividends and utility deposit refunds. When checks are not cashed or accounts go dormant, and the company is unable to locate the owner, the funds are sent to the Treasury for safekeeping.

Wed
17
Nov

Social Security Matters

Ask Rusty – Why Is My Medicare Part B Premium So High?

Dear Rusty: Social Security is deducting $297 per month for my Medicare Part B coverage. I have what’s called a “Windfall Elimination Provision” because I receive a pension from my former State employer. Prior to my 65th Birthday in July of this year, Social Security was paying me $764 per month, but when I turned 65 they reduced my amount to $467 per month. I read that the Part B premiums for 2021 are $148.50, so I wonder why I’m paying double that amount? Could it be that I never enrolled in Medicare Part B and they just automatically started deducting that amount? Some sort of penalty? If so, it seems kind of high. Can you explain why I’m paying so much for Medicare Part B? Signed: Curious About Medicare

Wed
10
Nov

Social Security Matters

Ask Rusty – About Paying SS Tax While Still Working

Dear Rusty: Upon being let go in 2009 at age 65 from my full time job of 30 years, I immediately applied for Social Security for my wife and I to live on while seeking employment. Not finding anything full time, I ended up working part time for the past 9 years driving a school bus for an hourly wage. Even though my wife and I are collecting Social Security, my wages are still being taxed for it. While I don’t feel this is fair, the real rub (to me) is the fact that my Social Security payroll deductions for the past nine years do not seem to be resulting in an increase in the amount of Social Security we receive. Meanwhile, a friend, who is our age and a business owner, mentioned the amount he is taxed for SS as a sole proprietor is somehow being returned to him from time to time. Therefore, could you please explain what’s happening here and whether we are due some kind of adjustment? Signed: Working Still at 74

Wed
10
Nov

Men Can Be Abused Too

Men Can Be Abused Too

When we talk about Domestic Violence we usually are referring to women being battered by men. Although less talked about, intimate partner violence (IPV) happens to men as well. Studies have shown that men can be punched, slapped, grabbed, kicked or choked by their partner. Men are far more likely to keep their situation a secret, where as only 20% of the victims ever come forward and tell the police or a health professional about being victimized.

Wed
10
Nov

Observations

Observations
Observations
Observations

Sheriff Aaron Mitchell, left, and Attorney General Jeff Landry, right

Observations

Mrs. Anna Allison Burgess of Cookeville, TN is shown at the grave of one of her great-grandfathers Joseph “Mine Lick” Allison in the Joe Bob Allison Cemetery in Putnam County, TN.

Observations

Detective Chris Abrahams

Observations

Sheriff Aaron Mitchell promised to work on solving Sabine’s cold cases when he took office in early July of 2020. Now, a 35-yearold cold case has been solved under his administration.

Observations
Observations
Observations

INDICTED BY THE FEDS: Tryton Thomas, left, and Elena Rivers, right

Sabine Sheriff Aaron Mitchell, the top Sheriff in the state in our opinion, and his deputies recently received a letter from Attorney General Jeff Landry saluting his office on behalf of the state Department of Justice “…for your extraordinary efforts in the fight against illegal narcotics.”

The letter stated: “Thank you to your Tactical Narcotics Team and your entire agency for your joint efforts with the FBI to help make Louisiana safer and healthier.”

“As you know, the drug trade all too often ravages communities and destroys families. Defeating it requires a multi-dimensional approach, one that your office has greatly contributed.

“Please encourage your deputies to keep the great work going and let them know they remain in my prayers.

“Thanks again for protecting and serving the people of Sabine.”

We have been greatly impressed since he took office 16 months ago at the tremendous job Sheriff Mitchell has done.

Wed
03
Nov

Speaking Out for Louisiana Citizens

Speaking Out for Louisiana Citizens

THE POPE & THE PRESIDENT

President Biden met with Pope Francis last Friday. This did not appear to be a problematic situation for both men, who are the two most prominent Catholics in the world. The Pope knows the faith of his people and God’s word and yet you have the leader of the United States, who has been condemned by many Catholic bishops for being pro-abortion and against religious principals. Naturally, Pope Francis does not want to deny the sacrament of the Holy Eucharist, but it could have been a very touchy situation but when they met but they handled it well. Biden says he received communion, but there were no witnesses so we don’t know for sure.

Wed
03
Nov

Social Security Matters

by National Social Security Advisor at the AMAC Foundation, the non-profit arm of the Association of Mature American Citizens

Ask Rusty – Is Waiting until 70 Still the Best Plan to Maximize Social Security?

Dear Rusty: My wife started her Social Security at 62 in March 2017 and I filed a Restricted Application to collect a spouse benefit from her shortly thereafter. Our plan is for me to file for my own Social Security later this year when I turn 70. Then my wife will file for her spousal benefit from me. Our life expectancy is 93 & 96. Is this still the best plan for maximum payments? Signed: Planning Ahead

Dear Planning: Yes indeed. You›ve chosen an excellent strategy, and one which is no longer available to younger beneficiaries. The Restricted Application option you chose, to get only spouse benefits and let your own increase, was eliminated for anyone born after January 1, 1954.

Wed
03
Nov

Why are good employees leaving your company? Five tips to keep them

The job quitting isn’t stopping: a record 4.3 million workers left their jobs in August – a milestone that followed the April landmark of 4 million Americans exiting their companies.

Some people are leaving their jobs because the COVID-19 pandemic caused them to reconsider how much their companies value them. In that context, whether it’s a matter of pay, work demands, work-from-home flexibility, or overall culture, it’s important that businesses seeking stability and growth know how they can retain their best employees, says Michele Bailey (www.michelebailey.com), ForbesBooks author of The Currency of Gratitude: Turning Small Gestures into Powerful Business Results.

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