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October 2018

GREENSVILLE/EMPORIA DEPARTMENT OF SOCIAL SERVICES

LOCAL BOARD MEETING

The Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services Administrative Board will meet on Thursday, October 18, 2017, at 3:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the Greensville/Emporia Department of Social Services located at 1748 East Atlantic Street.  The public is welcome to attend.

“Just a Housewife”

I think there’s an illusion
in today’s status quo
whereby a college degree
depicts what you know.
 
You see I am a housewife
just simple and plain
I’ve no shingle to hang
embossed with my name.
 
My job though rewarding
starts early each day
I help two of my children
for school get away.
 
Then my next step is breakfast
for that husband of mine
yes he needs my assistance
to reach work on time.
 
Now that everyone’s gone
I can take a short break
then a cry from the nursery
means the babys awake.
 
A quick change is needed
and then some powder to dry
then I refill her bottle
and it’s sleepy time bye.
 
Now it’s off to the kid’s room
to make up their bed
then I out clothes in the washer
and do the dishes I dred.
 
Well it’s lunchtime already
and have the baby to feed
then I make out my list
for the groceries we need.
 
I then get out the stroller
for they say it is wise
to push the baby to market
for your exercise.
 
The shopping all finished
and put the baby to bed
yes and I made shacks for the children
with their favorite spred.
 
Now soon after I’ve vacuumed
and dusted once m ore
the children from school
come through the front door.
 
The sound of their voices
I knew the baby would wake
so outside I sent them
and put on the steak.
 
It was later than usual
when my husband arrived
yet thanks to the snacks
the children survived.
 
Now dinner is all finished
so the dishes I’ll stack
knowing tomorrow at seven
I’m sure to be back.
 
Yes I’m an occupation Housewife
though I’ll make it quite clear
I’m not just a housewife
but a Household Engineer!
 
                    Roy E. Schepp

Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center Offers $99 Mammogram Special* To Encourage Breast Cancer Screening

Emporia, VA – One in eight women will be diagnosed with breast cancer. In Virginia, breast cancer is the most frequently occurring cancer for women.**

To encourage more women to take action for their breast health, Southern Virginia Regional Medical Center (SVRMC) is offering a special to women in October, which is recognized as Breast Cancer Awareness Month. SVRMC has teamed up with MDsave to offer $99 mammogram screenings!

Here’s how it works:

  • Get a referral from your physician or healthcare professional
  • Go to mdsave.com/mammogram to purchase your voucher
  • Call SVRMC’s Imaging Center to schedule your mammogram (434) 348-4470
  • Bring our $99 mammogram voucher to your appointment

“Mammograms save lives,” said Dr. Sasa Espino, Board Certified Breast Surgeon with Southside Physicians Network. “Today, thanks to early detection and treatment advances, more women are surviving breast cancer and living longer, healthier lives.”

This program runs now through October 31, 2018 and is for mammogram screenings performed at SVRMC located at 727 North Main St, Emporia, VA 23847. Get Directions.

“The bottom line is, nearly all breast cancers can be treated successfully if found early,” Dr. Espino added. “And the most effective way to detect breast cancer at an early, treatable stage is to have yearly mammograms starting at the age of 40, and to have regular clinical breast exams by a doctor or nurse.”

For women of average risk, the American College of Radiology recommends annual mammograms starting at age 40, with no upper age limit as long as the woman is in good health. Different guidelines apply to women at higher risk.*** A screening mammogram can help detect breast cancer in its earliest and most treatable stages.

To participate in the $99 mammogram screening promotion, a woman must be age 40 or older and know the date of her last mammogram. Insurance will be charged and only covers one mammogram annually. This is for a digital 2D mammogram screening of both breasts, for women who exhibit no signs or symptoms of any disease, complaint, or abnormality. This also includes computer-aided detection (CAD) of lesions obtained during the mammogram. Medicaid and Medicare participants are not eligible for this promotion.

*This is for a digital 2D mammogram screening of both breasts, for women who exhibit no signs or symptoms of any disease, complaint, or abnormality. This also includes computer-aided detection (CAD) of lesions obtained during the mammogram.

Price Details:

  • Facility fee: technical (equipment) fee for the imaging
  • Physician fee: physician interpretation fee

This MDsave bundled price includes the cost of your procedure and the fees listed above. These fees are for the services most frequently packaged together with this procedure. Any services provided at the time of treatment that are not listed here will not be covered in your purchase. View Details

 

**Breast Cancer statics sourced via https://gis.cdc.gov/Cancer/USCS/DataViz.html

 

***For a list of risk factors and American College of Radiology recommendations, visit www.acr.org.

Appointments are on a first-come, first-served basis. An order from a physician or qualified healthcare provider is required. If the patient does not have a physician/provider, a list will be provided for selection. All mammogram reports will be sent to the physician/provider, and the patient is responsible for follow-up.

Check with your insurance provider to confirm coverage for a screening mammogram.

 

 

 

SVCC Receives Donation from Abilene Motor Express

Abilene Motor Express recently donated a 53’ trailer to the Truck Driver Training School at Southside Virginia Community College. Abilene was founded in 1986 by the Jones family from Charlotte County.  Their successful business, with its home office in North Chesterfield, is well known and highly regarded all around the United States by the trucking industry.  

Duncan Quicke, Coordinator of SVCC’s Training School said, “Abilene has one of the best maintained and most immaculate fleets on the road today, but their sparkling image goes far beyond their pretty green and gold paint scheme. The Joneses are true ambassadors to the trucking profession, and they treat everyone in the industry like family. We are no exception at the Truck Driver Training School. They provide us with the necessary tools to train our students, and they are actively hiring our graduates. Abilene’s generosity helps us continue to run a quality program and prepare drivers for the trucking industry.” 

Current students of the Truck Driver Training School show off the new trailer.

VSU Welcomes New Hires in 4-H, Forestry and Operations

Virginia State University (VSU) is pleased to announce the addition of three new personnel who have joined Cooperative Extension and the College of Agriculture. Chantel Wilson, Ph.D., has joined as 4-H STEAM Extension specialist, Jerry Bettis Sr., Ph.D., has joined as forestry Extension specialist, and Ronald Howell has rejoined the College of Agriculture as director of Operations Management reporting to Dean M. Ray McKinnie.

“We are thrilled to welcome two new specialists to our Extension family. The addition of Dr. Chantel Wilson will enable us to enhance our capacity to engage youth in agriculture through our 4-H program. Dr. Jerry Bettis will provide expertise to foresters and Virginians interested in trees and forests,” said Dr. McKinnie. “And we are pleased to welcome back Ronald Howell to VSU. He will provide guidance and direction for College of Agriculture strategic operating plans, projects and initiatives.”

 “I’m excited for the chance to ‘give back’ by developing programming to help prepare young people for success in a changing world,” said Dr. Wilson. “Programs such as 4-H can have a tremendous positive influence on the lives of young people. I believe that my participation in a youth agricultural program helped me to develop career aspirations and the skills needed for my success, eventually leading me to become the first person in my family to graduate from college.”

Dr. Wilson earned a Ph.D. in crop and soil environmental sciences from Virginia Tech, and an M.S. in plant pathology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She intends to work with stakeholders to determine community needs and the skills young people need for success in STEAM fields. STEAM in this instance stands for science, technology, engineering, agriculture and math. “I hope to channel my creativity and passion to develop fun, informative and useful programming based on current research,” she said. “My ultimate goals are to generate interest in STEAM fields, strengthen scientific literacy and to empower youth by showing them how to reach their career goals.” 

Dr. Wilson is also a Virginia certified turf and landscape nutrient management planner. Before joining VSU, she served as urban nutrient management Specialist at Virginia Tech contracted to the Virginia Dept. of Conservation and Recreation, and as a graduate research assistant/teaching scholar at Virginia Tech. Dr. Wilson joins VSU’s 4-H Extension specialist Dr. Maurice Smith, who specializes in youth development, citizenship and leadership development.

Dr. Bettis Sr. expressed his enthusiasm for becoming part of Cooperative Extension’s rich history of educating and training Virginia landowners. “I hope my first accomplishments are to teach and train underserved landowners to seek the services of a consulting forester and use a written contract prepared by a consulting forester when selling timber,” he said. “If each landowner in Virginia does this when selling timber, I would consider my tenure at VSU stellar!”

Dr. Bettis holds a Ph.D. in forestry from North Carolina State University. Before joining VSU, he served as forestry-natural resources Specialist at Tuskegee University, and as early rotation forester and raw materials representative at the Weyerhaeuser Company in New Bern, NC, where he was responsible for fire, vegetation and pest control on approximately 500,000 acres of timberland. 

Ronald Howell, a USDA scholar and VSU alum, said, “I am excited about my new position and to give back to my alma mater and the college that has made a huge impact on my life personally and professionally. Being back at Virginia State University and a part of the College of Agriculture allows me to share my passion for agricultural sciences and work with the faculty members and staff who afforded me so many opportunities as a student and who helped launch my career.”

Howell, who earned his master’s degree in agriculture and Extension education-community development from Virginia Tech, will be integral to the administration of budgets, developing management procedures and implementing new business processes. He will also provide administrative leadership to Randolph Farm and have oversight for the 1890 Facilities Grant Program. And through a partnership agreement, he will serve as a special advisor to the Office of the Secretariat of Agriculture and Forestry to increase land-grant capacity for outreach, student development and build strategic partnerships and initiatives that improve the stability and sustainability of farm and forestland owners in Virginia. Howell has held several positions with USDA and with the Commonwealth of Virginia, each time at a greater level of responsibility.

Extension is a joint program of Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and state and local governments. Virginia Cooperative Extension programs and employment are open to all, regardless of age, color, disability, gender, gender identity, gender expression, national origin, political affiliation, race, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, veteran status, or any other basis protected by law. An equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. Issued in furtherance of Cooperative Extension work, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Virginia State University, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture cooperating. Edwin J. Jones, Director, Virginia Cooperative Extension, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg; M. Ray McKinnie, Administrator, 1890 Extension Program, Virginia State University, Petersburg.

SBA Small Business Lending Momentum Continues in FY18

~SBA FY18 total loan volume reaches more than $30 billion with more than 72,000 approved loans~

 

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Small Business Administration announced FY18 lending numbers showing that it guaranteed over $30 billion to small businesses that otherwise would not have had access to capital.

“We are providing tools, resources and access to capital for America’s 30 million small businesses, and our FY18 numbers bear that out,” SBA Administrator Linda McMahon said. “SBA’s 7(a) and 504 loan programs have never been more dynamic, easy to use and accessible—helping small businesses succeed and thrive.  Our loan programs in FY18 continue to show strong performance, and we believe the President’s tax cuts and deregulatory actions will help more small businesses grow and prosper in the coming year.”

In FY18 there were approximately 60,353 7(a) loans made, with a total dollar amount of $25.37 billion. The 7(a) program is SBA’s flagship program, which offers guarantees on loans to small businesses of up to $5 million on reasonable terms and conditions. 7(a) loans are commonly used for acquiring land, purchasing equipment, or working capital.

The SBA’s 504 loan program had another year of high performance for lending, with 5,874 loans made for a total dollar amount of over $4.75 billion. In FY18 SBA launched the 25-year Debenture, which offers an extra 60 months of financing at a fixed rate for small businesses. Since its introduction in April, over 1,000 debentures had been sold by the end of September.

“The 25-year Debenture is designed to help free up cash flow and offer fixed rates in a rising interest rate environment for 504 borrowers and we are pleased to see over $1 billion has been disbursed in less than six months,” Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Capital Access William Manger said.

In FY18 there was significant growth in the SBA’s smaller loans, including a record volume of dollars lent in the Microloan and Community Advantage Programs. Specifically, over 5,000 loans were approved for over $72 million in the Microloan program and over 1,000 loans for over $150 million in SBA’s Community Advantage program.

The SBA continued to innovate and improve processes by leveraging enhanced technologies. Lender Match is an SBA technology platform that gives entrepreneurs the ability to complete a quick online form, without registration or cost, and be connected with an approved SBA lender within 48 hours. To date, Lender Match has generated 3.6 million leads on behalf of small businesses to our lenders and over 160,000 unique borrowers have been contacted by lenders with financing options. 

Another technological innovation was the development of the SBA’s Franchise Directory, which was launched this year and has resulted in an over 50 percent increase in eligible franchise brands. There are currently 3,192 brands on the Franchise Directory. When the directory was first published in October 2017 there were only 2,034 brands.  In FY18, SBA has seen a year over year increase of over 21 percent in 7(a) and 504 dollars going to franchises.

For more information about SBA’s loan programs, financial assistance and other services, visit www.sba.gov.

 

Justin Owen of Skippers Completes SVCC PLW Program

Justin Owen of Skippers and a graduate of Greensville County High School, completed the Southside Virginia Community College Power Line Worker Training Program on September 19, 2018.

The 11-week program provides both classroom and hands-on training in safety, climbing techniques, electrical theory, aerial framing, rigging, Operation Utility Service Equipment and Commercial Driver’s License Training.

SVCC offers the Power Line Worker class in Blackstone Virginia at the Occupational/Technical Center in Pickett Park. For information, southside.edu.

Power Line Worker Students from the eighth class of the SVCC Training Program

Front L-R  Wayne Gates of Petersburg, Chase Simon of Meherrin, George Blackwell of Lunenburg, David Rios of Farmville, Justin Owen of Skippers, Brandon Chumley of Red Oak, Logan Branch of Gladstone, Alex Hite of Kenbridge, Nick Plutro of Carson, Alex Rothgeb of Clarksville, Justin Perez of King George, Brad Wike, Instructor

Back L-R:  Clyde Robertson, Instructor  Adam Ashmore of Disputanta, Charlie Herrin of Oakton, Luke Swanson of Winchester, Nate Trevillian of Monroe, Zac Cavezza of Suffolk, Cole Shornak of Chester, Brian Burch of Crewe, Ian Banker of New Ellenton, SC, Blake Spangler of Salem, and Nick Grigg (Student Instructor)

Building for a Promising Future

By Dr. Al Roberts

Established in 1970, Southside Virginia Community College is one of 23 colleges in the Virginia Community College System. From its humble beginnings, the college has grown to become the leading provider of quality academic and workforce services within the largest community college jurisdiction in our state. The college’s 4,200-square mile service region spans ten counties and also encompasses the city of Emporia.

Meeting the need for education services across such a broad area requires a wide range of diverse options. Consequently, the college serves students from two main campuses, five education centers, and other off-campus sites, as well as through online learning opportunities. The college’s Christanna campus in Alberta currently has six permanent buildings. The John H. Daniel Campus in Keysville has four permanent buildings, including its Learning Resource Center/Student Services building, a 32,700-sqare foot structure completed in 2014. All combined, the college maintains 220,000 square feet of building facilities, 88% of which is allocated for instructional and student use.

And SVCC continues to grow. The college is among the leaders in Virginia’s FastForward workforce credentialing program. Innovative services to help ensure student success continue to be deployed, and connections with area business and industry partners continue to expand.

The college is also growing physically. In September, construction began on a new, two-level Learning Resource Center on the Christanna Campus. The new facility will expand the college’s infrastructure in order to provide exceptional resources for mission-critical activities. When completed in January 2020, the 45,000-square-foot building will house the Christanna Campus library, and it will provide performance space, a food service area, student study and lounge areas, a workout room, and a welcome area. It will also feature a Career Center, a Veterans’ Center, a Credentialing Center, and an IT Training Laboratory. Student services, including financial aid, admissions and records, and IT support, will also be relocated to the new building.

The new Learning Resource Center will play a vital role in the lives of students for semesters and years to come. SVCC offers 23 degrees at the associate level, a host of shorter-term academic and workforce development programs, opportunities for dually enrolled high school students, adult basic education, and other transitional services for non-traditional students. In addition, a comprehensive team of academic advisors, tutors, student services professionals, and counselors are available to help students develop their academic strengths and tackle challenges.

At SVCC, we believe in the transformative power of education to positively impact individual students and the communities we serve. To learn more about how to build your educational future at SVCC, visit the college’s website at Southside.edu or call 434-949-1000. Our team of academic and workforce advisors can help you discover how to create your own promising future.

Dr. Al Roberts is president of Southside Virginia Community College, an institution of higher learning that provides a wide variety of education opportunities to a diverse student population within a service area that spans ten counties and the city of Emporia. He can be reached via email at al.roberts@southside.edu.

Breast Cancer – Symptoms, Treatment and More

~Community Out-Reach Education~

South Hill – Breast cancer is the most commonly diagnosed cancer among women worldwide.  Each year, breast cancer accounts for 12 percent of all cancers diagnosed globally, and is the second leading cause of cancer-related death among women.  What are causes, symptoms and stages of breast cancer?  What are current treatments and the newest research related to breast cancer?  What are breast cancer risk factors?

If you are seeking answers to questions like these you should attend October’s C.O.R.E. (Community Out-Reach Education) Program at VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital to learn about breast cancer.

This FREE program will be on Monday, October 22nd at 4:00 p.m. in the VCU Health CMH Education Center inside the new C.A.R.E. Building located at 1755 N. Mecklenburg Avenue in South Hill.

The speaker for the program with be Dr. Masey Ross.  Dr. Ross specializes in oncology, the branch of medicine that deals with the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer.  Dr. Ross received her medical degree from Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine in Chicago, IL.  She completed her residency and internship as well as a fellowship from VCU Medical Center in Richmond, VA.  Dr. Ross evaluates, diagnoses and coordinates care for patients at the Hendrick Cancer and Rehab Center in South Hill; at VCU Medical Center North Hospital and Stony Point 9000 in Richmond.

Reservations are not required for this program; however, they are recommended.  For more information or to register to attend, please call (434) 447-0854 or visitwww.vcu-cmh.org.

Meherrin River Expected to Crest at 25.5 Feet after Tropical Storm Michael

After all of the rain from Hurricane Michael, especially the rain to the west of us, the Meherrin River is already above Moderate Flood Stage and is overflowing it's banks, flooding parts of Center Street and closing Vetreans Memorial Park and the Meherrin River Park.

At 8:30 Sunday evening, the guage recorded 25.34 feet and the National Weather Service expects a crest of 25.5 feet at 2:00 am on Monday. The estimated flow when the river crests is expected to be over 16,000 cubic feet per second. At a typical depth, the flow of the Meherrin River is less than 500 Cubic feet per second.

The river is expected to be below the 13 foot action stage on Tuesday.

The impact of various water levels is listed below:

34 Feet Water begins to flow across the Hicksford Ave Bridge.
33.5 Feet Water reaches the intersection of Center St and High St.
30 Feet Water reaches the entrance to Meherrin River Park along Hicksford Ave.
25  Feet Homes on Center St between Cleveland Ave and Monroe St are inundated.  Homes along Meherrin Park Rd begin to flood and the ball fields in the EGRA park are flooded.
24 Feet Portions of Center St begin to flood and some residential areas are threatened.
23 Feet Flood waters infiltrate sewer system. The parking lot next to the ball fields in EGRA Park begins to flood.
20
Feet
Water reaches the top of the boat ramp in the Meherrin River Park/EGRA Park.
19 Feet Water covers the walking bridge in the Meherrin River Park.
16
Feet
Meherrin River Park and Veterans Memorial Park are closed to public access.
15 Feet Water begins to cover portions of the walking trail in the Meherrin River Park.
13
Feet
Cautionary stage. Water begins to overflow the banks in the Meherrin River Park.

 

Lillie E. Langley Pearson

Lillie E. Langley Pearson,95, died Friday October 12, 2018, surrounded by her family and friends. Lillie was born in Brunswick County to the late John Temple Langley and Ola Mosley Langley.

She spent her childhood at the Jackson-Feild Episcopal Home Walnut Grove where she was well cared for and connected with other girls who became like sisters.

Lillie attended Greensville County Schools where she met her future husband, George Gilbert Pearson. Gilbert and Lillie were married in November of 1945 and lived in Emporia, where they raised two daughters. She worked at Virginia Dye Plant until her retirement and was a member of Main Street Methodist Church. Lillie spent her free time developing the perfect recipe with her husband for their locally famous pound cakes. She continued to provide cakes to the community throughout her life and passed along her recipe to her family.

Left to honor Lillie and remember her love are her daughter; Gay Taylor and husband Melvin, grandchildren; Patricia Watson and husband Rick, Robert Taylor, Allison Travis and husband Walker of Gordonsville, VA, five great-grandchildren; Taylor, Jordan, Tanner, Lily, and Lauren; and many nieces and nephews. Lillie was preceded in death by her loving husband Gilbert Pearson, a daughter, Ann Pearson, God Parents , Arch and Gay Campbell, four sisters and a brother.

The family would like to extend their sincere appreciation to New Century Hospice aid Candice Pride and nurse Ann Mathews for their care and dedication.

Funeral Services will be held Sunday, October 14, 2018 at 3:00 P.M. at Main Street Methodist Church with Rev. Tom Durrance and Rev. Joseph Klotz Jr. officiating. Burial will follow in Emporia Cemetery. The family will receive friends from 2:00 P.M. until Service time at the church. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made in Lillie’s name to Main Street Methodist Church.

Online condolences may be left at echolsfuneralhome.com.

ATTORNEY GENERAL HERRING FIGHTS TO STOP ILLEGAL ROBOCALLS AND SPOOFING THAT PLAGUE CONSUMERS

~ AG Herring joins bipartisan coalition of 34 attorneys general asking the FCC to let phone companies do more to block illegal robocalls – including neighbor spoofing ~

RICHMOND (October 10, 2018) – Attorney General Mark R. Herring has joined a bipartisan coalition of 34 attorneys general in calling on the Federal Communications Commission to create new rules to allow telephone service providers to block more illegal robocalls being made to unsuspecting consumers in Virginia and across the country.
 
“It seems today like every Virginian has either received these annoying robocalls or they know someone who has, even I have received them and I am the Attorney General,” said Attorney General Herring. “These robocalls are not just annoying and frustrating to consumers but they are also illegal and folks should not have to worry about being scammed by these types of phone calls. It is my job as Attorney General to protect Virginia’s consumers, which is why I’m joining my colleagues in calling on the FCC to take stronger action and create new rules to protect Virginians from robocalls.”
 
The formal comment to the FCC explains that scammers using illegal robocalls have found ways to evade a call blocking order entered last year by the FCC. Despite the FCC’s order, robocalls continue to be a major irritant to consumers in Virginia and across the United States. In 2017, the Federal Trade Commission received 4.5 million illegal robocall complaints – two and a half times more than in 2014. The Virginia Office of Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Section receives numerous complaints each year with respect to illegal calls, including scam calls, telemarketing complaints, and robocalls. 
 
Following last year’s order when the FCC granted phone service providers authority to block certain illegal spoofed robocalls, the attorneys general are now seeking added authority for the providers to work together to detect and block more illegal spoofed robocalls – including “neighbor spoofing.”
 
“Spoofing” allows scammers to disguise their identities, making it difficult for law enforcement to bring them to justice. “Virtually anyone can send millions of illegal robocalls and frustrate law enforcement with just a computer, inexpensive software and an internet connection,” the attorneys general wrote in the formal comment filed with the FCC.
 
One tactic on the rise is “neighbor spoofing,” a technique that allows calls - no matter where they originate - to appear on a consumer’s caller ID as being made from a phone number that has the same local area code and first three digits as the consumer. This manipulation of caller ID information increases the likelihood that the consumer will answer the call.
 
In the formal comment, Attorney General Herring and his colleagues expressed support for a new initiative, which will give phone service providers the ability to authenticate legitimate calls and identify illegally spoofed calls and block them. The added authority sought by the attorneys general will allow service providers to use new technology to detect and block illegal spoofed calls – even those coming from what are otherwise legitimate phone numbers. Service providers will be ready to launch this new authentication method in 2019.
 
To date, the FCC has not issued a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning additional provider-initiated call blocking. The attorneys general anticipate that further requests for comments will take place on this subject.
 
Attorney General Herring was joined on the comment by the Attorneys General of Arizona, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Utah, Vermont, Washington, Wisconsin, and the Hawaii Office of Consumer Protection.

Achieving Self-Support with Social Security

By Jacqueline Weisgarber, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Richmond, Virginia

Work means different things to different people, but it can give you a sense of self, a community to rely on, and much-needed structure. Some people define themselves through their careers, while others enjoy the social aspect of their jobs. If you rely on Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payments and want to start working or return to work, we can help.

A plan for achieving self-support (PASS) is a plan for your future. This plan lets you use your income or resources you own to help you reach your work goals. You could set aside money to go to school and get specialized training for a job or to start a business. The job that you want should allow you to earn enough to reduce or eliminate your need for payments provided under the SSI program.

You can have a plan if:

  • You want to work;
  • You get SSI (or can qualify for SSI by having this plan) because you have a disability or are blind; and
  • You have other income and/or resources to use to get a job or start a business.

A PASS can even help you receive or keep SSI or could mean a higher payment. Under SSI rules, any income that you have may reduce your SSI payment. But, if you have an approved plan, you can use that income to pay for the items you need to reach your work goal.

We don’t count money set aside under this plan when we decide your SSI payment amount. This means you may get a higher SSI payment. However, you can’t get more than the maximum SSI payment for the state where you live. A PASS can also help you set aside money for most work expenses. With an approved plan, you can set aside money to pay expenses to reach your work goal. You can read all about what work expenses are covered and more at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-11017.pdf.

The plan must be in writing, and Social Security must approve it. To start, contact your local Social Security office for an application (Form SSA-545-BK). You can access this form at www.socialsecurity.gov/forms/ssa-545.html.

Your job isn’t just a source of income — it can be a vehicle to independence or a beginning to fulfilling your dreams. Let Social Security’s Plan for Achieving Self-Support help you achieve your goals.

More Uses for $222,050

These are the suggestions that have arrived via e-mail and been made in person:

  • Sidewalks all the way to Wal-Mart and Food Lion.
  • Sidewalks along Commomwealth Blvd.
  • Sidewalks along ALL of Main Street
  • A Playground near the I-95/US 58 interchange.
  • Bolster JOB CREATION and ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT.
  • More funding for the Public Schools.
  • Five-day-per-week access to the General Registrar (Why should people not be able to register to vote Monday-Friday?).
  • Longer hours for the Treasurer, so that those working out of town can pay in person, even if only one night per week.
  • An ATM like kiosk for payments to the City (Water Bills, Taxes, etc).
  • Electronic Billing as opposed to just automatic bank draft for payments to the City (without any fees, other cities do it).
  • Creating Mulch/Compost from yard waste and allowing Citizens to use resulting product (an idea that might save money if the City could stop purchasing mulch).
     

This list will be updated and added to as more suggestions arrive.

In the meantime, visit this page for the e-mail addresses of your City Council Member. You can also drop a letter to The Clerk to City Council, PO Box 511, Emporia, Virginia 23847. The Clerk to City Council may be reached by phone at (434)634-7309 and City Administration may be reached at (434)634-3332.

Tags: 

What would you do with $222,050? ***UPDATED***

Editor's Note: According to the Commonwealth of Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development, Emporia is the most fiscally stressed locality in the Commonwealth. There is no city or county in the Commonwealth with a higher fiscal stress rating.

A former menmber of the Civic Center Foundation just informed EmporiaNews.com that that group raised the money and paid to remove the asbestos from the Auditorium. The fact that the asbestos has already been abated, at great expense to the Civic Center Foundation, is yet one more reasons to leave the building standing.

There have been several e-mails sent to the editor echoing the sentiments of this article.

THERE IS NO JUSTIFIABLE REASON FOR THE EMPORIA CITY COUNCIL TO WASTE THE AMOUNT OF MONEY BUGETED ($210,000), PLUS AN ADDITIONAL $12,050 TO "SAVE" PARTS OF THE BUILDING THAT HAVE BEEN DEEMED IMPORTANT BY THE VIRGINIA DEPARTMENT OF HISTORIC RESOURCES.

Once again, the Emporia City council has decided to waste your money tearing down a perfectly good building.

Please don’t get me wrong, it’s not a spectacular building it has no major architectural character, but it’s ours.  It’s a symbol of a time when our country could come together can put everyone to work.

The building in question is the auditorium on Main Street.  All that remains of the former school complex.  This particular building was built as a Works Progress Administration project in the midst of the great depression if.  The Auditorium is one of three WPA project within the city of Emporia, the others are in close proximity - the Post Office and the Armory.

I say again, it is not a spectacular building, but it is important history.  More importantly, it’s not eating anything nor is it drinking anything.  The city is expanding minimal funds in maintenance, and the building is not connected to any utilities except water and sewer; and those are most likely not being used.

One can imagine countless school assemblies, Christmas programs, concerts and the like being held in this auditorium.  In its more recent history it was the first home of the Meherrin River arts council.  Just like the Victorian school buildings that once stood beside it, this building is part of our history.

It was suggested to a member of City council that the school buildings and auditorium would make an excellent City Hall.  This was several years ago before the schools were torn down.  There was enough space in those buildings to house all of the offices of our city government, and have banquet halls that would rival those of golden leaf commons.  The police department could move into the existing City Hall, or it could have been used as a new library. 

That suggestion fell on deaf ears and two perfectly useful buildings were demolished.

We can listen the City Council share concerns about asbestos, but I saw no asbestos abatement when the schools were torn down.  We can listen to city council when they talk about how it’s a drain on our resources, but as mentioned above the building is connected to no utilities and receives only very minimal maintenance.

One can listen to the City Council until one is blue in the face and one will probably never know the real reason why that August body is so determined to demolish this building.

City council is budgeted more than $220,000 for the task of removing a perfectly useful building, which according to their own architectural review is in good condition and is costing us nothing. 

Just two weeks before the meeting at which City Council decided to waste this money, they entered into a lease/purchase agreement for three vehicles.  That agreement was for $154,000.  By not demolishing the auditorium, the interest payments on at least purchase arrangement could be saved and the city could pay cash outright for those three vehicles.

Much-needed police vehicles aside, $222,050 could pay for much needed expansion and upgrades at the library or even just pay for more computers and additional hours.

$222,050 would more than cover the $172,000 needed to replace our 911 call handling equipment.  The balance could be used to cover the 2% COLA raises for city employees, which total $10,955 according to the most current budget.

In the time that I’ve lived here water bills have more than tripled and sanitation fees have nearly quadrupled.  $222,050 would surely put a dent in the debt service that caused those bills to soar out of control, or the very least pay off whenever debt remains on that new garbage truck. $222,050 would go a very long way toward replacing the water meters in the City, a task that is in dire need of undertaking.

Just looking at the budget, one can see many opportunities to constructively spend $222,050.

Without even leaving the school property, $222,050 would go a long towards making the auditorium and the cafeteria viable for event rental.  In light of the doubling the fees at golden leaf commons, organizations such the family violence and domestic assault unit could continue to use a low-cost facility for their fundraising (or no cost, as this program is administered as a city department).

Knowing that you, the average citizen of the city of Emporia, could pay down your debt, complete existing projects, or avoid incurring new debt, how would you spend $222,050?

The city of Emporia is currently one of the most fiscally stressed localities in the commonwealth of Virginia.  We cannot afford to allow our City Council to squander our money.  The fiscally conservative option is to spare this building demolition and find a useful purpose for it.  No matter what anyone else, especially if they claim to be fiscally conservative, the demolition of the WPA Auditorium on Main Street is not fiscally conservative.

Further, anyone who claims to be fiscally conservative and voted for the demolition of the structure, which is clearly a waste of taxpayer revenue, is not fiscally conservative.

Visiting Chefs Mentor Jackson-Feild Students

Culinary Arts students at Jackson-Feild Behavioral Health Services (JFBHS) Gwaltney School recently had an extraordinary day working with Chef Patrick J. Kearney of US Foods and Chef Sue Jett Taylor of The Affinity Group, a food broker with US Foods.

Working side by side with Chef Patrick and Chef Sue, the students prepared variety of restaurant-worthy offerings.  From BLT & Fried Green Tomato Sandwiches on Chia Seed Bread to Ham & Manchego Cheese topped with a Wilted Salad and tossed with Balsamic Dressing, students and staff alike were delighted with the results.  In addition to those savory dishes, the students and chefs also prepared Lightly Glazed Donuts and a Butter Tart topped with whipped cream and strawberries.

This hands-on opportunity was the brainchild of JFBHS Food Service Director and Culinary Arts teacher, Chef Mary Griffith.  Ms. Griffith is forever seeking ways to engage and motivate her students, and this event was a resounding success that boosted student self-confidence and reinforced the lessons learned in the classroom. The students were thrilled to demonstrate their skills and receive positive feedback from their peers and staff.

JFBHS would like to thank US Foods representatives Kim Harper and Suzanne Vandeventer for making this event happen for the students in Gwaltney School’s Culinary Arts program. The chefs’ time and attention as well as the food prepared were provided by US Foods and The Affinity Group as part of their outreach and educational volunteerism program.

Caring is Cool for this SVCC Alumnus

Hope Alexander’s job is cool because she has spent her entire career caring for others.  There is a quote, “Care for one, that’s love, care for hundreds…. that’s nursing.” 

Alexander started her career at the early age of 16 as a Licensed Practical Nurse who completed the program at Southside Virginia Community College.  Now, she is a full time Family Nurse Practitioner employed by Centra Health Systems. She mainly works out of the Burkeville office. 

She has her own assigned patients and manages chronic and acute conditions. 

As the only female provider in the office she notes, “I so enjoy my calling. I dare not say it’s a job.  Jobs are chores... this is my passion.”

When Alexander isn’t caring for patients Monday through Friday 8:30am to 5pm, she extends herself and works at least two Saturdays a month from 8 am to 12 noon at the Walk-In Urgent Care Center in Farmville, Va.  

Graduating at 16 from Bluestone High School, the Boydton native then attended SVCC and completed the Practical Nursing Program.  She went on to work at Duke University Hospital in the Emergency Department, the Intensive Care Unit working with spinal cord injuries and open-heart surgery patients for five years.

“Then, I came back to SVCC,” she says enthusiastically about receiving her Associate’s Degree in Nursing in 1999.  

During this time, she continued to work at Duke part-time.   

After becoming a Registered Nurse, Alexander worked for Community Memorial Hospital in South Hill (now VCU Health Community Memoria Hospital) and during this time, she also tutored ADN students at SVCC.  Later, she became an adjunct instructor for her alma mater teaching campus lab, drug dosage, health assessment and clinical instruction at the Emporia/Greensville hospital (now Southern Virginia Regional Hospital).  

With no reduction in energy and drive working all these full-time jobs, she continued to be a student.  She received her Bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Liberty University and, a BA in social work and business administration.  In 2011, she completed a Master’s in business education and Leadership through Liberty also.

And then, there is more…she went back for her Nurse Practitioner(NP) in 2015 completing this degree from South University.  An NP is an Advanced Practice Registered Nurse who has additional responsibilities for administering patient care than RNs. NPs can prescribe medication, examine patients, diagnose illnesses, and provide treatment, much like physicians do.

And, finally, she completed her Ph.D. from Liberty in psychology. But, there may be more classes out there for Alexander to pursue. 

Also, during all the studying, Alexander was busy being a mom to three children, a daughter and two sons.   People asked why she kept going, kept studying and adding degrees.

“I was hungry for more,” she said. 

The energizer bunny has nothing on Alexander.  At home, she takes care of her family and three chihuahuas and reads in her spare time.

“SVCC gave me my start.  As for my children, failure is not an option and I use myself as an example for them,” she said.    

“I tell them anyone can play a sport, but knowledge is power,” Alexander said.   

Alexander has a powerfully cool job as she takes care of her community every day with enthusiasm, pride and a smile.

She has many mantras that she applies to her life.  One in particular is this, “If you love what you do... you will never work a day in your life.”

Breast Cancer Awarness at BA

The students and faculty of Brunswick Academy wore Pink in support of Breast Cancer Awareness on Tuesday, October 2.

Hunting the White Tail Deer and Chronic Wasting Disease

This year, I was one of the legislators to represent Virginia at the Southern Leadership Annual Conference in St. Louis, MI. I attended several workshops on education, economic development, public safety, and sportsmen rights. As a member of the Virginia Sportsmen Caucus and an advocate for hunting/ sportsman rights, I discussed the future of hunting as a sport with John Culclasure, who is the manager of the Congressional Sportsman Foundation at the National Sportsmen caucus meeting. One of the major hunting concerns nationwide that is impacting rural communities, is the spread of chronic wasting disease among the white tail deer population.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a fatal neurological disease that affect deer, elks, and moose. This disease is transmitted to deer through saliva, feces, urine and through water or soil contaminated with an abnormal infectious protein called prion. The signs and symptoms of this disease (CWD) in deer are progressive weight loss, excessive thirst, teeth grinding, excessive salivation and holding the head in a lowered position and drooping ears.

Chronic Wasting Disease was first discovered in Virginia in 2009. The first case was found in November in 2017 in Frederick County.  The Department of Game and Inland Fisheries have tested 16 positive deer with chronic wasting disease during the months of October -November throughout Frederick, Warren, Shenandoah and Clarke County. Although chronic wasting disease poses a very serious threat to the deer population, the effects of the disease have shown to impose no substantial health risks to humans or domestic animals.

As we approach the deer hunting season, please be aware of this infectious disease that is gradually spreading among the white tail deer population. If you identify a deer exhibiting the above listed signs and symptoms, please contact the Game and Inland Fisheries or my office. Please feel free to invite me to your hunt club or church, or civic organization meeting by contacting my office at (434) 336-1710 or email delrtyler@house.virginia.gov.

"What Parade"

Lots of peanuts and wrapped candy
did away with our big parade
there was nothing that showed to be creative
like when those big beautiful floats were made.
 
I think I saw enough cars and trucks
to fill up most parking lots
yes and I saw children hanging on to tailgates
in far too many spots.
 
We used to have some bands that played
and marchers that could march
the uniforms that most did wear
needed a bit more starch.
 
What used to be a tribute
to the peanut farmers for whom we care
has turned into an election line
with politician cars everywhere.
 
I think a feasibility study is in order
to see which way you’re going
if this is a tribute to our farmers
you have a funny way of showing.
 
                             Roy E. Schepp

Benjamin “Gil” Perkins inducted as the 2018 Hall of Fame recipient

Defense Logistics Agency Aviation Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. Linda Hurry presents Benjamin “Gil” Perkins with the Hall of Fame medal and award for his selection as DLA Aviation’s 2018 Hall of Fame member Sept. 27, 2018 in the Frank Lotts Conference Center, Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia. (Photo by Jackie Roberts)

By Natalie Skelton, DLA Aviation Public Affairs Office

Richmond, Va., Oct. 2, 2018 —

For his dedicated service and contributions to Defense Logistics Agency Aviation, Benjamin “Gil” Perkins, former DLA Aviation chief counsel was inducted into the 2018 DLA Aviation Hall of Fame Sept. 27. Perkins retired in 2015 after 34 years of service.

The ceremony was held Thursday afternoon in the Frank B. Lotts Conference Center on Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia.  DLA Aviation Commander Air Force Brig. Gen. Linda Hurry opened the ceremony, making note of Perkins’s many contributions during his time at DSCR. “There is no question that Gil’s dedication to this team helped shape this center, touching the lives of many people throughout our center, from the time he started here in March 1981 until his retirement in October 2015, and beyond,” Hurry said.

Perkins’s tenure at DSCR and DLA Aviation began with services as a law clerk while was still attending the T.C. Williams School of Law at the University of Richmond. He then served as an attorney-advisor at DSCR, and later in a rotational assignment as business manager for the Packaged Petroleum, Chemicals, Gases and Rings, Shims & Spacers Product Center — a $120 million venture. In 2006, he was promoted to chief counsel for DLA Aviation at DSCR, a position he held until retirement.

Julia Roquemore, Aviation and Airframes division chief, Supplier Operations Commodities Directorate, DLA Aviation and Brenda Brunner, supervisory paralegal specialist, DLA Counsel-Aviation, nominated Perkins.

Roquemore said the reason she nominated Perkins was because he cared more than anyone. “He was a champion of improving the quality of life for all DLA Aviation employees,” said Roquemore. “He took time to listen to people. He was a true champion of DLA Aviation.”

Perkins’s accomplishments while at DSCR include leading the office to establish and create a workload-tracking and case management database that served as the model for the DLA Counsel enterprise wide Automated Workflow and Reporting System, better known as AWARS.

“Gil’s legacy has impacted our mission, set examples for employees and introduced enduring benefits to the organization,” Hurry said. “He called DLA his dream job that fell right in with two of his life goals: serving people and supporting his country.”

The event was attended by his wife, Susan, who also worked at DLA Aviation and retired shortly before her husband after 30 years of service. One of Perkins’s four daughters—Lauren Freeman, also attended, as well as Perkins’s father, Hugh, and his sister Mary Perkins.

The DLA Aviation Hall of Fame recognizes former civilian and military team members who have made significant and lasting contributions to the agency and who represent core DLA values and ideals. Perkins is the 36th inductee into the Hall of Fame.

Perkins said, “Don’t just go to work, go to serve, to appreciate the privilege we’ve been given, to accept the responsibility that goes with the privilege and to continue to do great things."

HEAD OF VIRGINIA’S MFCU ELECTED PRESIDENT OF NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MEDICAID FRAUD CONTROL UNITS

~ During Attorney General Herring’s time in office MFCU has recovered $91,525,956 ~

RICHMOND (October 2, 2018) – Attorney General Mark R. Herring announced today that Randy Clouse, Director of the Virginia Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU), has been elected President of the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units (NAMFCU). Randy has been the Director of Virginia’s MFCU for nearly 20 years and under his leadership the unit has grown from 12 to 102 members and recovered over $2 billion in court ordered restitution fines and penalties for the Virginia Medicaid program.
 
“I cannot think of a more worthy and qualified person to serve as President of NAMFCU,” said Attorney General Mark Herring. “Randy has been the head of our MFCU for almost 20 years, and in that time he has grown the unit exponentially and recovered more than $2 billion for Virginia. I want to congratulate Randy on this honor and thank him for all of his hard work making Virginia’s MFCU one of the best in the country.”
 
“The outstanding results are the direct reflection of the great work of the employees of the MFCU and outstanding relationships we have with our federal counterparts, the United States Attorneys Offices for the Western and Eastern Districts, the FBI, IRS, DEA, FDA and HHS-OIG and the Department of Medical Assistance Services,” said Randy Clouse.
 
About Randy Clouse
 
Randy joined the Virginia Attorney General’s Office in May 1999 as the Director of the Virginia Medicaid Fraud Control Unit. Prior to joining the MFCU, Randy was a Police Officer with the Richmond Police Department. While in that capacity, he was a Detective assigned to the Organized Crime Division’s Vice Squad infiltrating street level illegal narcotics, prostitution, worked outlaw biker gangs and satanic cults. During Randy’s last three years in the Organized Crime Division, he was the Undercover Coordinator where he supervised multi-jurisdictional undercover sting operations targeting organized crime, organized prostitution rings and human trafficking. During his last two years in the Department, he was assigned to work Violent Crimes and Homicides. He attended California University, in Pittsburgh Pennsylvania, majoring in Criminal Justice. 
 
Randy has been a member of the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Unit’s Executive Committee for five years and served as Vice President for the last year. Randy will be the first non-attorney to be president in the 40 year history of the National Association of Medicaid Fraud Control Units. As President of NAMFCU, Randy will continue to work closely with the National Association of Attorney’s General and the NAMFCU Executive Committee to continue their outstanding work overseeing the Association’s training programs and multi-state cases involving health care fraud, the illegal prescribing of opioids and elder abuse and corporate neglect issues. 
 
About Virginia’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit
 
The Virginia Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) of the Office of the Attorney General was certified October 1, 1982, by the United States Department of Health and Human Services. The Unit is one of 50 units throughout the United States with the same mission. 
 
From the MFCU inception in 1982 through 1999, the Virginia MFCU recovered over $10 million in court ordered restitution, fines and penalties. From 1999 through present, under Randy Clouse’s leadership, the Virginia MFCU has recovered over $2 billion in court ordered restitution, fines and penalties. 
 
The MFCU employs a professional staff of criminal investigators, auditors, attorneys and support staff who work together to develop investigations and prosecute cases. The Virginia MFCU works regularly with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to combat fraud, protect our most vulnerable citizens and to save taxpayer dollars.
 
In 2008, the Virginia Medicaid Fraud Control Unit received the State Fraud Award from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General for achieving the highest amount of monetary recoveries in the history of all state Medicaid fraud control units in fiscal year 2007 with over $500 million in recoveries.
 
In 2013, the Virginia MFCU was named the number one MFCU in the country by the United States Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Inspector General.
 
In 2014, during Attorney General Herring’s first term, Virginia’s MFCU received the State Fraud Award from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General for achieving, again, the highest amount of monetary recoveries in the history of all state Medicaid fraud control units in fiscal year 2013 with over $1 billion in recoveries. To this date, neither of those recoveries has been achieved by any other state MFCU. Also in 2014, Virginia’s MFCU was awarded the “Honest Abe” award from the Taxpayers Against Fraud Education Fund.

Lake Gaston Baptist Church Adventurers Annual Arts and Craft Fair Saturday November 3, 2018 9:00 a.m. to 3 p.m.

The lake community always looks forward to this annual Arts and Craft Fair, now in it’s 11th year and featuring over 50 vendors!

All items are handcrafted by local and regional artists and designers. Admission is free and drawings for door prizes are held throughout the day. Shoppers will receive shopping bags with a few goodies inside while supplies last. Lunch, snacks and beverages will be available for purchase.

Don’t miss this opportunity to shop for unique handcrafted items!

Interested vendors may contact Lynne Sanders at sanders.lynne@gmail.com or Teresa Freeman at 252-532-3027

Innovation Award to Dominion team

(From left) Nathan Worcester, Adam Flowers, Alan Bradshaw, Alison Kaufmann, Annette Martin and Andy Thomas win the Chairman’s Excellence Award for their mobile app solution that directly helps customers.

RICHMOND, Va. (Oct. 3, 2018) – A mobile app solution to enhance collaboration with customers won top recognition at Dominion Energy’s inaugural Innovation Expo. The app uses augmented reality to communicate with customers one-on-one before overhead power lines are converted to underground power lines on their property.  

An employee-led team from the Power Delivery business unit and the Information Technology group won the “Chairman’s Excellence Award” at a ceremony held today at the Science Museum of Virginia. CEO Thomas F. Farrell presented the honors to that team, as well as 11 other finalists voted among the best by their colleagues across the company.

The awards, which recognize the most creative ideas to emerge from employees in the past year, make up just one part of the company’s much broader innovation strategy that is moving forward.

“Our customers want choices and improvements in how to power their homes, businesses and vehicles,” Farrell said. “They want their energy company to be a leader in modernizing electric and natural gas infrastructure, and developing clean energy solutions.”

Innovation at Dominion Energy means using new technology and improving existing business processes to bring the future closer, and creating an environment in which employees are encouraged to experiment. Because new business models are being explored every day to anticipate the major shifts happening in the energy sector, the company has put in place a dedicated innovation team led by Chief Innovation Officer Mark Webb, to work across all business units to consistently apply an innovation strategy.

The mobile app that won the highest honor was developed by employees Andy Thomas, Alison Kaufmann, Adam Flowers, Annette Martin and Nathan Worcester. Currently being used in the company’s Strategic Underground Program, the app enables an employee to use an iPad camera to add a virtual image of equipment that is overlaid on a customer’s property configuration. The employee can review the layout with the customer and adjust it until the customer is satisfied with the placement. It is another way to partner and collaborate with customers when installing equipment on their property.

“We are not simply trying to react to customer expectations, we are creating new experiences,” Farrell added. “The achievements of these colleagues and those to come will ensure our future success.”

Workers'Compensation and CERTAIN Disability Payments May Affect Your Social Security Benefits

By Jacqueline Weisgarber, Social Security Public Affairs Specialist in Richmond, Virginia

Many people working nowadays have more than one job, so it’s not uncommon for them to have several sources of income. Owning multiple small businesses, seasonal jobs, and the gig economy add to the mix — and complexity — of our modern day economy. It’s important to keep in mind that having multiple sources of income can sometimes affect your Social Security benefits.

Disability payments from private sources, such as private pensions or insurance benefits, don’t affect your Social Security disability benefits. Workers’ compensation and other public disability benefits, however, may reduce your Social Security benefits. Workers’ compensation benefits are paid to a worker because of a job-related injury or illness. These benefits may be paid by federal or state workers’ compensation agencies, employers, or by insurance companies on behalf of employers.

Public disability payments that may affect your Social Security benefits are those paid from a federal, state, or local government for disabling medical conditions that are not job-related. Examples of these are civil service disability benefits, state temporary disability benefits, and state or local government retirement benefits that are based on disability.

Some public benefits don’t affect your Social Security disability benefits. If you receive Social Security disability benefits, and one of the following types of public benefits, your Social Security benefits will not be reduced:

  • Veterans Administration benefits;
  • State and local government benefits, if Social Security taxes were deducted from your earnings; or
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

You can read more about the possible ways your benefits might be reduced at www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-10018.pdf.

Please be sure to report changes. If there is a change in the amount of your other disability payment, or if those benefits stop, let us know. Tell us if the amount of your workers’ compensation or public disability payment increases or decreases. Any change in the amount or frequency of these benefits is likely to affect the amount of your Social Security benefits.

An unexpected change in benefits can have unintended consequences, but not if you’re informed and have financially prepared yourself. Visit our benefits planner webpage at www.socialsecurity.gov/planners for information about your options for securing your future.

Shirley Jean Robbins Prince

Shirley Jean Robbins Prince, 73, died Monday, October 1, 2018 at Southside Regional Medical Center.

A native of Watauga County North Carolina, she was the daughter of the late Lillie Dotson Robbins and was also preceded in death by three sisters; June Robbins, Sue Parton, and Evelyn Whisenant.

Shirley was a retired homemaker and is survived by her devoted husband of 37 years; Roy Lee Prince, son; David Butler (Tammy), daughter; Rebecca Curry (James) of Roanoke Rapids, NC, a brother; David Dotson (Tammy) of Maiden, NC, grandchildren; Destiny Morriss, Isaac Butler, Harley Butler and Devin Butler.

A Memorial Service will be held Thursday, October 4, 2018 at Echols Funeral and Cremation Service Chapel at 2:00 P.M. with Rev. Larry Grizzard officiating.

Online condolences may be left at echolsfuneralhome.com

Dr. El Mouallem Joins VCU Health CMH

Nemer Junior El Mouallem, M.D.

South Hill – VCU Health Community Memorial Hospital in South Hill would like to welcome Dr. Nemer Junior El Mouallem to our family of health care providers as a Medical Hematologist-Oncologist and Medical Director of VCU Health CMH Cancer Care. 

Dr. El Mouallem comes to VCU Health CMH with clinical specialties in medical oncology, hematology and internal medicine.

Dr. El Mouallem received a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Doctorate of Medicine from the American University of Beirut located in Beirut, Lebanon.  He completed his residency at the University of Alabama at Birmingham Hospital, located in Birmingham, Alabama.  He completed his Fellowship at the Department of Internal Medicine – Hematology, Oncology, and Palliative Care Division at Virginia Commonwealth University Health System, Richmond, VA and Veterans Affairs Medical Center, also located in Richmond. He is licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia and board certified by the American Board of Internal Medicine.  Dr. El Mouallem is a professional member of the American Society of Hematology, American Society of Clinical Oncology and the American College of Physicians.

Dr. El Mouallem is currently working at the Hendrick Cancer and Rehab Center located at 750 Lombardy Street in South Hill. Dr. El Mouallem joins the CMH Cancer Care team of Dr. Monica Morris, Radiation Oncologist; Dr. Shekhu Brar, Medical Oncologist; Dr. Masey Ross, Medical Oncologist; Dr. Mark Malkin, Neuro-oncologist; and Mrs. Lisa Moss, Oncology Nurse Practitioner.  To schedule an appointment with Dr. El Mouallem call (434) 774.2417.

No Kid Hungry Virginia Grants Support Breakfast After the Bell Programs in Local Schools

RICHMOND, Va., Sept. 26, 2018 – No Kid Hungry Virginia is investing $57,400 to launch alternative breakfast programs in 15 schools across the state. The programs – known nationwide as Breakfast After the Bell – increase access to school breakfast by making it a part of the school day,providing breakfast in a way that is more convenient and accessible to students, resulting in increased student participation.

The school breakfast program can ensure that kids get the morning nutrition they need, but too often, it can be challenging for kids to access this critical meal. Some examples of alternative breakfast service models include: Breakfast in the Classroom (BIC), Grab and Go Breakfast, and Second Chance Breakfast.

More than 300,000 children in Virginia live in families that struggle with hunger. Research shows that hunger has long-term ramifications on children, including lower test scores, weaker attendance rates and a higher risk of hospitalizations and chronic diseases. No Kid Hungry Virginia and its partners focus on Breakfast After the Bell as a critical way to end childhood hunger in Virginia.

The following schools received No Kid Hungry Virginia breakfast grants:

  • Brunswick High School in Brunswick County - $5,000
  • Caroline Middle in Caroline County - $4,920
  • Churchland High in the City of Portsmouth - $5,000
  • Clarke County High in Clarke County - $5,000
  • Courtland High in Spotsylvania County - $3,675
  • Dinwiddie High in Dinwiddie County - $5,000
  • Edward W. Wyatt Middle in Greensville County - $3,500
  • Fluvanna County High in Fluvanna County - $2,775
  • Kentuck Elementary in Pittsylvania County - $1,956
  • Lebanon Middle in Russell County - $5,000
  • Randolph Elementary in Goochland County - $2,500
  • Rappahannock High in Richmond County - $4,400
  • Riverview Elementary and Middle in Buchanan County - $5,000
  • Spotsylvania Middle in Spotsylvania County - $3,675
  • Thornburg Middle in Spotsylvania County - $3,675

Nearly 1,000 schools in Virginia have Breakfast After the Bell programs. Research indicates that eating breakfast at school helps children improve classroom performance, have better attendance and promotes healthy habits.

“We know one of the most effective ways to boost school breakfast participation is to serve it after the bell and make it a part of the school day,” said Claire Mansfield, No Kid Hungry Virginia state director. “We’re excited that more schools across Virginia will be implementing Breakfast After the Bell programs this school year. No Kid Hungry Virginia is here to help schools and districts launch and strengthen breakfast programs so that students have the nutrition they need to succeed in the classroom.”

The grants will help schools purchase items such as “Grab and Go” kiosks where students can easily pick up breakfast in the morning, along with other supplies to assist cafeteria staff with launching alternative Breakfast After the Bell models aimed at bringing breakfast out of the cafeteria to increase student access and participation.

No Kid Hungry Virginia also awarded Southampton County Public Schools with a $5,000 grant to expand an Afterschool Meals Program to Southampton Middle School. The division is using the grant to fund a refrigeration unit and to support marketing materials that build excitement and awareness about the program.

Visit va.nokidhungry.org for more information about No Kid Hungry Virginia’s work and Breakfast After the Bell programs.

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