Win tickets to see the smash hit musical Mamma Mia at the Roanoke Civic Center. Two winners will each receive four tickets!
Friday, April 26, 2013
Refund debit card: Use with caution
I just got my Virginia tax refund in the mail. No, it wasn't a check. It was a debit card, issued not by the state, but by Xerox State & Local Solutions Inc., "Administrators of the tax refund debit card program at no cost to the Commonwealth."
While I fully understand the workings of using the card, there could be a lot of frittering away of money by those who are less informed - or just do not understand all of the fees that could be incurred:
There are five services available free with unlimited usages of the card.
There are four one-time free usages of the card - with a $2 charge thereafter.
There are two two-time free per month usages with a $2 charge thereafter.
There are nine other usages with varying charges, from 10 cents to $18.
I realize Xerox State & Local Solutions has to make money somewhere, but I foresee a lot of folks getting ripped off by this project, little by little.
Questions arise: When (and how) did this get passed by our legislature? Who did it? Do they have an interest in the company? Other questions come to mind the more I think about it.
Guns don't kill; gun owners do
It is the undeniable truth: Gun homicides occur because irresponsible gun owners kill or allow their guns to be used by others to kill. The result is 10,000 gun-related homicides annually in the United States.
Fortunately, most gun owners handle their guns safely, respectfully and responsibly. But responsible gun owners appear to be silent. We are told that gun owners overwhelmingly support universal background checks of gun purchasers, but the Senate bill to require universal background checks was voted on last week and failed to pass.
Silent gun owners allowed the National Rifle Association, a trade association dedicated to protecting the economic interests of gun manufacturers and distributors, to speak on their behalf and misrepresent their positions. This misrepresentation is bad for society and for responsible gun ownership.
Reduced gun violence will occur only when responsible gun owners speak out, with their voices and their votes.
"A vote is like a rifle: Its usefulness depends upon the character of the user." These are the words of President Theodore Roosevelt, American sportsman and inspiration for the Denver-based Bull Moose Sportsmen's Alliance. Check out this organization. If it represents your views on gun ownership, join and repudiate the NRA.
ROBERT F. CANOVA
New Zealand shooters find gun law oppressive
Re: "Yes, the government should take your gun away," April 20 commentary:
Michael Abraham presents his opinion of the New Zealand gun laws. He likes them and wishes we had similar laws.
I am retired, but for many years I was a sponsored, professional competition pistol shooter. I met and became friends with competitors from New Zealand and other countries. I still have the kiwi pin the New Zealanders gave me attached to my range bag. Our conversations usually turned to the New Zealand shooters telling me how lucky I was to live in the USA, free from oppressive gun laws.
Abraham may embrace New Zealand's gun laws, but the many New Zealand friends that I knew did not.
Abraham further states that armed citizens cannot protect themselves from a tyrannical government due to the superior technology of government. He must have forgotten Vietnam and Afghanistan, where determined fighters with no technology sent two world superpowers home in defeat.
Weather JournalBreather before next wintry system