"America is founded on four boxes: 1.) The Soapbox. 2.) The Ballot Box. 3.) The Jury Box. 4.) The Ammo Box. They should be used in that order. This is my soapbox."
"America is founded on four boxes: 1.) The Soapbox. 2.) The Ballot Box. 3.) The Jury Box. 4.) The Ammo Box. They should be used in that order. This is my soapbox."
The Department of Veterans Affairs has produced it's annual year-end report to the congress, and for the third year running, the rate at which the V.A. acts to render decisions on disability claims fell further behind.
While the goal is to make determinations within 125 days, the reality is, on average it takes a claim 183 days to be acted on.
Columbus -- A bin-busting corn harvest is forcing Ohio farmers to get a little more creative in finding places to store their huge crop.
DEERFIELD TOWNSHIP, OHIO - Recycling just got easier in Deerfield Township. We now provide residents with the opportunity to drop off items to be recycled at dumpsters located at the Township’s three fire stations located at 8375 Snider Road (Station 56); 3380 Townsley Drive (Station 57); and 2095 Kings Mills Road (Station 58).
READ THE DETAILS HERE: Hot News.
DEERFIELD TOWNSHIP, 0HIO - Deerfield Township has openings on various boards for interested residents who wish to serve. Individuals 18 years of age or older should submit a resume and letter stating why they wish to volunteer on a board by the deadline date indicated. Send applications to: Deerfield Township, 4900 Parkway Drive, Suite 180, Mason, Ohio 45040.
Deerfield Township Electronic Program Gets the Message Out
DEERFIELD TOWNSHIP, OHIO - Reaching 29,000 residents is as easy as clicking a mouse, thanks to Deerfield Township’s C-Notify electronic system. This program enables us to alert residents about news that affects their lives — water boil advisories, meeting notices, hydrant flushing, road closures, meeting minutes, Deerfield Digest, or Homeowner Association news.
The system is now up and running, confidential and easy for residents to participate.
Residents should email their preference of notification — email or phone — which we will enter into our database. When a water boil or hydrant flushing is issued, they will be instantly notified. It’s easy and fast, so stay up to the minute on issues that affect your life and send your information to Director of Public Relations Ms. Fran M. Klatte at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Link: Hot News.
"Jingle Bells Rock"
An Original Rockin' Musical
A musical revue with singing, dancing
and the charm of Santa and “Mrs.” Claus
welcoming all to holiday festivities.
Director: Connie Hatfield
Producer: Joyce Stottmann
Choreography: Marjorie Clegg
Music Director: Dennis W. Duvall.
November 30th, December 1, 2, 7, 8, 9th
Fri. & Sat @ 8 pm Sunday 3 pm
Contact: Joyce Stottmann (513) 770-4342
and Connie Hatfield (513) 683-7639
Click here for other details: Loveland Stage Company.
The November Character Quality of the Month is Determination. It is defined as "Purposing to accomplish right goals at the right time, regardless of the opposition." The opposite is Faintheartedness.
To practice Determination , "I will" statements for children and adults alike are: I will.
My wife Nancy and I attended a book signing recently at Lunken Airport and got to meet Loren Long. He is an illustrator who has done artwork for many children's books, including The Little Engine That Could and a book by Madonna. He was very humble, and he talked of his love for books and baseball and kids and his family. His paintings are, in my mind, remarkable, because they harken back to an earlier era, as do the subjects of many of his books. Ironically, he was seated under some of the murals which grace the lobby of Lunken Airport Terminal. They were painted in 1937 by William Harry Gothard and were part of the New Deal's Works Progress Administration commissions. It struck me that his style of painting was similar to that of Mr. Gothard. Mr. Long agreed and said that he was happy to be able to see the murals again and to keep that style alive.
I mention Loren Long because I believe that he is an example of what I think of as a Cincinnati Treasure. By that, I mean a person who has attained a measure of national or international fame, but who chooses to remain in and around Cincinnati. Examples would be Erich Kunzel of the Cincinnati Pops; Anthony Munoz, Hall of Fame Bengal; C. F. Payne, Jim Borgman, or John Ruthven, famed artists who continue to live and work here; Nick Clooney, Cincinnati Post columnist and commentator; or even Jean-Robert de Cavel, chef and restauranteur. These Cincinnati Treasures are skilled enough, and enjoy enough fame, that they could move to a more prestigious city to operate. Why do they stay here? I'm not privy to their inner thoughts, of course. But I suspect that they do it, at least in part, out of Determination. Being a big fish in a small pond, or a big fish in a more prestigious pond, does not motivate them.To them,
Being a local Treasure does not mean one is perfect or wholly fulfilled. In the musical "Camelot," which recently played in Cincinnati, Lancelot asks King Arthur whether he ever doubted that the Round Table would succeed. Arthur says, "Of course. Only a fool never doubts." I believe that Cincinnati Treasures have attained their level of acclaim not because they are perfectly confident. Rather, they often harbor self-doubts which in many cases push them harder and higher and farther. Maybe reassuring themselves of their worth drives them; it's not about impressing the people on the East or West Coasts.
What about Loveland? Don't we have "Loveland Treasures?" Aren't there people here who could be somewhere bigger and better? If we are lucky enough to keep certain people around here as our own Treasures, we need to praise their Determination. I urge you to seek out our local Treasures. Thank them for the rest of us. Their Determination helps Loveland to Determine its success.
Bill Croskey, NCSP, is the Loveland Intermediate and Middle School Psychologist
MILFORD, OHIO - Join the members of Goshen Fire & EMS in a celebration of life for a life ended too soon benefiting the family of Kaitlyn Gentry.
When: Monday, Dec. 10
Time: 4-10 p.m.
Where: Texas Roadhouse, 375 Rivers Edge Dr., Milford OH 45150
Kaitlyn is the 17-year-old daughter of one of our members and attended Little Miami Schools. Kaitlyn was tragically killed on Oct. 13, 2007 in an auto accident. The members of Goshen Fire and EMS and Milford Community Fire Department will be busing tables to benefit the Gentry family. Come join them for dinner, and Texas Roadhouse will donate 10 percent of your bill to the Gentry family.
MORROW, OHIO - Little Miami High School students led a campaign to ensure the tragic death of junior Kaitlyn Gentry will save the lives of others.
Student Government Representatives at Little Miami High School led an initiative to get more than 2,000 signatures for a petition to change the intersection of Edwardsville Road and Middleboro Road in Harlan Twp. to a four-way stop. The petition calls for the installation of "dangerous intersection" warning signs and a four-way flashing red stop light. The signatures were delivered to Warren County Engineer Neil Tunison.
Mr. Tunison said the county is considering installing flashing red lights will to the stop sign on Edwardsville Road in about a month. Flashing yellow lights would be erected on Middleboro Road.
MORROW, OHIO - Little Miami Intermediate School students are becoming more energy conscious by participating in the Ohio Energy Project. Sixth grade science teachers Julie Bradbury and Stephanie Jauch are using their Encore time to teach students about energy conservation and efficiency.
The teachers were among 77 selected from across the state to participate in the 7-unit program, which provides materials for teaching the lessons. Sponsored by the Ohio Energy Project, this program teaches energy concepts and conservation strategies correlated to both the National Science Education Content Standards and the Ohio Department of Education Science Standards. Additionally, both teachers have received over $500.00 in equipment, supplies, and materials to support the pilot program.
Students received booklets with energy saving tips and actual products to improve conservation and energy efficiency at home. For example, students installed low-flow shower heads and kitchen sink aerators at home, in conjunction with an experiment at school on water conservation. During another experiment, students tested the difference in energy given off by an incandescent light bulb and a CFL bulb.
"Teaching students about energy conservation is a must," Ms. Bradbury explained. "As they become adults, they will have to find alternative energy sources."
Shown is sixth-grader Ashley Ingram taking a thermometer reading of an incandescent light bulb.
MORROW, OHIO – The Little Miami School District issued the following news release today announcing a new voice over IP phone system.
MORROW, OHIO - Little Miami High School PTO's "Holiday Home Tour" is on Saturday, December 1, from 4-8 PM. There will be refreshments and raffle items at each home. Ticket cost is $20 per person, and this includes admission to all seven homes, plus 5 free raffle tickets. Additional raffle tickets may be purchased at each of the homes. For tickets, call Annette Megie at 513-899-4434, or Tracy Smith at 513-899-3444.
Pictures are from the home of Ted and Susan Ruoff in Morrow Meadows. Their home will feature a Christmas Village consisting of over 125 houses, a Crystal Christmas tree, and many holiday collections.
SYMMES TOWNSHIP, OHIO - The Loveland school show choirs, By Request and Revolution, will present the holiday show, Carnival of Carols.
Santa will be there for photos. Frosty and Rudolph will entertain as well. there will be games, and prizes, and lunch will be available.
Loveland High School
Saturday, December 8
Show Times: 11 AM and 1 PM
Admission: Adults - $5.00, Children/Seniors - $3.00, Children under 3, admission is free
Carnival game and food tickets are 2/$1.00 or 12/$5.00
You can purchase tickets at the door.
Loveland ’s Middle and IntermediateSchool students collected more than 3,000 food items for the Loveland Food Pantry.
This is the seventh year for the annual “Pass It On” food drive sponsored by the Loveland M/INT PTSA. This year’s goal for students was 2,008 items and 3,081 items were collected, which was 153% over the goal. In addition, there was a cart and a half of food items donated that were not on the request list, like soups, muffin mixes, etc. The staff at LIS and LMS also collected two bins worth of gift wrap and supplies and additional food items. Over the course of the past seven years, Loveland staff and students have collected some 20,000 items for the pantry.
Read full story and see photo: Loveland City Schools.
LOVELAND, OHIO - The Loveland High School Jazz Band and Orchestra will perform on 11/29. Take time to get into the holiday spirit.
The Loveland High School Jazz Lab Band and Jazz Orchestra will be performing a holiday concert on Thursday, November 29, at 7:30 p.m. The groups will be performing a few holiday favorites and according to Band Director Mr. Maegly, "some fine jazz."
The free performance will be held at the Loveland High School Auditorium. Refreshments will be served.
Link: Loveland City Schools.
LOVELAND, OHIO – Loveland United Methodist Church's Pat Blankenship says, “Join us in the Celebration. Experience the Hope, Peace, Love and Joy awaiting you this Christmas Season at Loveland United Methodist Church.”
Sunday Worship: 8:30, 9:30 & 10:45 AM
Nursery Care all morning; Sunday School: 9:30, 10:45 AM
The Living Nativity: Dec 1st & 2nd: 4:30 –7:30 PM
Christmas Cantata: Dec. 16th: 8:30 & 10:45 AM
Praise Band & Children’s Choirs: Dec. 16th: 9:30 AM
Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship—Dec. 24th:
5 PM (Praise Band/Family) , 7 PM (Choir) & 11 PM (Communion)
Loveland United Methodist Church
10975 South Lebanon Rd
The Loveland Initiative is proud once again to host the 10th Annual Christmas Toy Store. The Toy Store was created to help low income families who could not afford toys & gifts. Purchasing toys & gifts at a discount helps parents feel they are contributing to their child's Christmas.
We are committed to using the money raised by the Toy Store for the betterment of children and families in Loveland. The past eight years, the money raised has been used for the Tracy Johnson Scholarship Fund which assists a student to further his or her education. We are very proud that twelve college scholarships have been awarded to Loveland graduates. Each year, we award a $1500 scholarship. Any additional money raised will go towards our other educational programs. We feel one of the ways to empower people is through education and is the way to break the cycle of poverty. Without you we can not offer to help these children. We will be accepting donations of NEW UNWRAPPED toys and gifts for children, preteens and teens ages newborn to 18.
Drop off NEW UNWRAPPED Toys & Gifts
Every Monday between 6:30pm-8:30pm
Starting November 26th & December 3rd, 10th, 17th, and Saturday Dec 22nd
At The Loveland Initiative 405 Loveland Madeira Rd.
Across the street from the Goodwill and United Dairy Farmers
Terri Rogers 677-1057(home) & 255-6821(cell)
Lill Lane 774-7878
Last minute items can be dropped off at the Loveland Fireman's VFW Hall (227 East Loveland Avenue) Tuesday December 18 2:00pm-7:00pm, Wednesday December 19 2:00pm-7:00pm and Thursday December 20 12:00 noon-8:00pm. We can also make arrangements to pick up gifts. In addition to gifts we always need volunteers for pick-up wrapping, displays and transportation. We are confident that our community will once again come together to help the children and families in Loveland. Please feel free to call or e-mail email@example.com with any questions or concerns. Thank you in advance for your help!
Terri Rogers, President
Bill Moyers Asks: What is the Meaning of the Nooses?
In this week's JOURNAL, Bill Moyers put the following question to Dr. James Cone:
How do you explain the current spate of the appearances of the noose again? Up comes this story right here from the suburbs of New York -- a noose found in the basement locker room of the village police department. The deputy chief of police is black. And then you've got Jena and you've got what happened at Columbia [University], near your office.
Do you think these people understand what that's the symbol of? Of what actually happened to human beings when that noose was placed around the neck? Or is this just some kind of grim game?
from Joe and Valerie Wilson on The Huffington Post
When Bush administration officials I. Lewis "Scooter" Libby, Karl Rove, Richard Armitage and Ari Fleischer betrayed Valerie Plame Wilson's identity as a covert CIA operations officer, they fell into the category of "the most insidious of traitors." Now we learn from the president's former press secretary, Scott McClellan, that the president himself "was involved" in sending him out to lie to the American public about the betrayal.
With the exception of MSNBC's Keith Olbermann, Chris Matthews, and the intrepid David Shuster, the mainstream media would have you believe that McClellan's revelation is old news. Now back to Aruba and the two-year old disappearance of a blond teenager.
THE PRESIDENT: Good morning. (Applause.) Welcome to the Rose Garden. Thanks for coming. We're glad you're here at the White House. Each of you is taking part in a tradition that goes back to the days of Harry Truman. And to paraphrase Harry today, we have a message for our two feathered friends: You cannot take the heat -- and you're definitely going to stay out of the kitchen. (Laughter.)
I want to thank the representatives of the National Turkey Federation who have joined us -- the Chairman Ted Seger. Appreciate you coming, Ted, thanks. Ted brought his mom. Glad you're here -- seven brothers, and over 30 family members, I think it is. No wonder there are so many people in the Rose Garden. (Laughter.) But we're glad you're here. Welcome.
I also want to welcome President Joel Brandenberger. The turkeys in today's ceremony come from the Seger family farm in Dubois, Indiana. So I guess you can say they come with the Chairman's seal of approval.
I also thank everybody who voted online to choose the names for our guests of honor. And I'm pleased to announce the winning names. They are "May" and "Flower." They're certainly better than the names the Vice President suggested, which was "Lunch" and "Dinner." (Laughter.)
The national observation of Thanksgiving goes back to the days of our founders. They asked Americans to give thanks for a nation that Benjamin Franklin famously compared to a rising sun. Over the years, Americans have found much to be thankful for. We still see our country the way Franklin did -- or, as the poet Carl Sandburg put it: "In the crimson light of a rising sun fresh from the hand of God."
This Thanksgiving, we are grateful for a harvest big enough to feed us all -- and millions more. We're grateful for citizens who reach out to those who struggle, and for neighbors in need -- from neighbors in need to the strangers they've never met. We're grateful for working Americans who have given us the longest period of uninterrupted job creation on record and a prosperity that lifts our citizens. And we are grateful for one blessing in particular: the men and women of the United States military. They've worn proudly the uniform of our country. They have offered their lives in our defense. And each year, thousands more volunteer to join their noble ranks and to keep us safe. And so on this Thanksgiving, we keep our -- we keep their families and their loved ones in our prayers and in our thoughts.
(Turkeys gobbling.) (Laughter.)
Thank you. (Laughter.)
America's children also have a special place in our thoughts during this season. Don't you agree? Today we're proud to be joined from youngsters from the Camp Fire USA. We're glad you all are here. It's a nationwide organization that helps children become caring and confident future leaders. One of the things Laura and I have been most thankful for over the years is the chance to meet children from across the country and to hear from thousands of others. Some send photos. Some offer prayers. Some of them ask about Barney. A second-grader from California once asked me, do you ever get a headache? Not really -- only when I have a press conference. (Laughter.) Some children send letters with the same -- with the simple phrase, "God bless America." Others write about relatives serving in the war, and they hope I remember them.
Earlier this year, a little girl in Oregon sent me a picture she had drawn. It's a large American flag -- and it stood in the glow of bright orange sun. The spirit that inspired Franklin and Sandburg and other generations of America lives in the heart of this child. She sees America in the light of a rising sun. And so do I, and so do millions of our citizens. It's hard to be anything but grateful when you live in a country full of compassionate and decent citizens -- a land our fathers always knew was blessed by the Almighty God.
And so now I have a task, and that is to grant a full presidential pardon to May and Flower. They'll be shortly flown to Disney World, where they will serve as Honorary Grand Marshals for the Thanksgiving Day Parade. I hope that honor doesn't go to their head. (Laughter.) May they live the rest of their lives in blissful gobbling. And may all Americans enjoy a holiday full of love and peace. God bless you all. (Applause.)
END 10:29 A.M. EST
Americans are a grateful people, ever mindful of the many ways we have been blessed. On Thanksgiving Day, we lift our hearts in gratitude for the freedoms we enjoy, the people we love, and the gifts of our prosperous land.
Our country was founded by men and women who realized their dependence on God and were humbled by His providence and grace. The early explorers and settlers who arrived in this land gave thanks for God's protection and for the extraordinary natural abundance they found. Since the first National Day of Thanksgiving was proclaimed by President George Washington, Americans have come together to offer thanks for our many blessings. We recall the great privilege it is to live in a land where freedom is the right of every person and where all can pursue their dreams. We express our deep appreciation for the sacrifices of the honorable men and women in uniform who defend liberty. As they work to advance the cause of freedom, our Nation keeps these brave individuals and their families in our thoughts, and we pray for their safe return.
While Thanksgiving is a time to gather in a spirit of gratitude with family, friends, and neighbors, it is also an opportunity to serve others and to share our blessings with those in need. By answering the universal call to love a neighbor as we want to be loved ourselves, we make our Nation a more hopeful and caring place.
This Thanksgiving, may we reflect upon the past year with gratefulness and look toward the future with hope. Let us give thanks for all we have been given and ask God to continue to bless our families and our Nation.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, GEORGE W. BUSH, President of the United States of America, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and laws of the United States, do hereby proclaim Thursday, November 22, 2007, as a National Day of Thanksgiving. I encourage all Americans to gather together in their homes and places of worship with family, friends, and loved ones to reinforce the ties that bind us and give thanks for the freedoms and many blessings we enjoy.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this fifteenth day of November, in the year of our Lord two thousand seven, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and thirty-second.
GEORGE W. BUSH
And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.
The year that is drawing towards its close, has been filled with the blessings of fruitful fields and healthful skies. To these bounties, which are so constantly enjoyed that we are prone to forget the source from which they come, others have been added, which are of so extraordinary a nature, that they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity, which has sometimes seemed to foreign States to invite and to provoke their aggression, peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre of military conflict; while that theatre has been greatly contracted by the advancing armies and navies of the Union. Needful diversions of wealth and of strength from the fields of peaceful industry to the national defence, have not arrested the plough, the shuttle, or the ship; the axe had enlarged the borders of our settlements, and the mines, as well of iron and coal as of the precious metals, have yielded even more abundantly than heretofore. Population has steadily increased, notwithstanding the waste that has been made in the camp, the siege and the battle-field; and the country, rejoicing in the consciousness of augmented strength and vigor, is permitted to expect continuance of years with large increase of freedom.
No human counsel hath devised nor hath any mortal hand worked out these great things. They are the gracious gifts of the Most High God, who, while dealing with us in anger for our sins, hath nevertheless remembered mercy. It has seemed to me fit and proper that they should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged as with one heart and voice by the whole American People. I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November next, as a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens. And I recommend to them that while offering up the ascriptions justly due to Him for such singular deliverances and blessings, they do also, with humble penitence for our national perverseness and disobedience, commend to his tender care all those who have become widows, orphans, mourners or sufferers in the lamentable civil strife in which we are unavoidably engaged, and fervently implore the interposition of the Almighty Hand to heal the wounds of the nation and to restore it as soon as may be consistent with the Divine purposes to the full enjoyment of peace, harmony, tranquillity and Union.
Raise money for Granny's garden program when you search or shop on line. Just about every retailer is offering the convenience of on-line shopping these days.
When you shop on line, please start by going to our website and click on the "Granny's General Store" icon where you will find more than 400 retailers who will donate a percentage of your purchase to the garden program. Many even offer free delivery with purchases over a certain amount. Click here for details.
Friday is Granny's Garden School Day @ Barnes & Noble - buy at the store or call in your order. Click here for details.
Order Avon products on line and support the garden program. Orders placed by December 10 will be delivered by December 17th. Click here for details.
Order a Honeybaked Ham gift certificate for any amount that can be used at any Honeybaked Ham store in the country. Click here for details.
Granny's Garden School and Blue Chip Cookies partner to make a difference.
30% of all proceeds from Blue Chip Cookies gift cards will be donated to Granny's Garden School. Click here to place and order.
If you place an order on line - perhaps to send to your favorite soldier, Blue Chip Cookie will make a donation to Cancerfree Kids
Below is a letter to the editor that Councilman Paul Elliott told me he was going to send to Loveland Magazine several weeks ago. Elliott is also a member of Loveland's Finance Committee, and when he received the City's proposed 2008 budget he brought the “Budget Book” as it is called to me, and asked if I wanted to look at it. The “Budget Book” is a very large document in a ring binder. I have attended many budget hearings at City Hall over the years and am very familiar with the “Book” and its format.
Elliott is always frustrated that so few people actually see documents such as this, and he is always seeking the ordinary persons view on these matters so he can be a better representative. Elliott said, “So why do I feel there's little attention paid to spending tax dollars on the folks that actually provide these tax dollars in the first place?” Elliott knows that the only way he can gauge public opinion on the budget, is to have at least a few people outside of City Hall, actually read it.
Elliott's letter continues, “So I'm going to suggest that the proposed 2008 budget be online on the city's website for all to see. You'll be able to make up your own mind if there's anything in it 'for you', besides the necessary functionings of a small town government.” Elliott and I have talked for years about how little information is actually made available to the public, in light of how easy it now is in the digital age to disseminate reams of information via the Internet.
Thus, my quest began to obtain the “Budget Book” in digital form so that it could be up-loaded onto Loveland Magazine.
City Manager Tom Carroll, when first giving the book to various staff, the Finance Committee, and to City Council said in a memo dated October 26, “Submitted herewith is the proposed 2008 City of Loveland Budget and Capital Improvement Program (CIP).” Knowing that this was the “Book” because I had seen Elliott's “Book” - I requested the “Book” in digital format from City Hall, calling it by the same name that the City Manager used in his memo, “2008 City of Loveland Budget and Capital Improvement Program (CIP).”
Thus began the string of convoluted e-mail exchanges out of City Hall that you can read below. As is the usual practice of Tom Carroll, when he doesn't want to do things he is required to do by law, he starts by saying he doesn't understand your question, and responds with a series of complex and difficult to follow questions of his own - meant to delay and frustrate.
How difficult could the public records request be for Tom Carroll, when the document requested was called by the very name he gave it?
A popular government without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a prologue to a farce or a tragedy, or perhaps both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance, and a people who mean to be their own governors must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives. ~ 9 Writings of James Madison 103 (G. Hunt ed. 1910)
As a member of the city's finance committee, I get to be one of the first to see the proposed budget for the upcoming year, 2008. The committee will look over what the city manager has brought forth, based on departmental requests, short and long range goals by council, normal city maintenance (road repair, water line replacement, etc), big capital expenditures (a new public works building), administrative updates (new computers, copiers, hard & software systems), and of course salary increases for all.
Needless to say, all the spread sheets, charts and line items makes perfect sense and are rationalized into "budgetary needs". So why do I feel there's little attention paid to spending tax dollars on the folks that actually provide these tax dollars in the first place? I do believe we "get our tax dollars back" with filled potholes, excellent police and fire protection, leaf and snow removal, flowers in the bridge boxes, and more. And maybe it's just me, but when I look at the long list of expenditures planned for 2008, I see a lot of "their wish list", and not much for the ordinary George and Martha taxpayer.
So I'm going to suggest that the proposed 2008 budget be online on the city's website for all to see. You'll be able to make up your own mind if there's anything in it "for you", besides the necessary functionings of a small town government. With the recent rejection of a 20% income tax increase, maybe we all will look at how our tax dollars are being spent with much more scrutiny and an eye towards wiser spending. Just maybe with a little fiscal belt tightening and more discretion, the city just might be able to achieve some of your goals, recreation and otherwise.
Paul Elliott, member
Loveland City Council
by David Miller
It took some serious arm wrestling over what should have been a simple request for a public document, but Loveland Magazine today finally obtained some of the City's 2008 Budget document. It is one day short of one week, since the public records request began, even though State of Ohio policy says concerning municipalities, “Routine requests for records should be satisfied immediately if feasible to do so. Routine requests include, but are not limited to, meeting minutes (both in draft and final form), budgets, salary information, forms and applications, personnel rosters, etc.”
There may be many other documents, presumably spread sheets, that are still being withheld. It is not clear at press time whether all of the Budget documents have been provided.
In a process that should require no more than attaching documents to an e-mail, taking only several minutes at most, the City went to the length of getting their law office involved, in keeping the budget from being published by Loveland Magazine.
Since the original request was made, the 2008 Budget has since passed out of the City Finance Committee and has been forwarded to City Council for their consideration.
Loveland Magazine's philosophy is to provide information of this nature, and not just merely comment on it and tell readers what to think. Readers, given base information, can come to their own conclusions and should not have the information filtered and interpreted for them. This after all is the 21st Century and the so-called “digital age.” We all don't need to be traversing to City Hall, during hours of their choosing, to see what is going on inside. And we no longer should have to rely on someone else to tell us - we should, in the digital age, be able to see through the walls using our computers. The City provides very little of this type of information on their (or should I say OUR) web site.
This week and last, the City Administration spend many hours of staff time and legal fees attempting to thwart Loveland Magazine from providing this information to you, the tax payers. These documents do not belong to City Hall. City Hall is merely the custodian of the records, and must by state law provide these records immediately upon request.
Click here to read the document request trail, and responses from various city officials. Download budget_request_emails.pdf
Here for the first time, published in digital form outside the wall of City Hall (and without comment about the spending habits of city officials from Loveland Magazine) is the city's proposed budget:
Saturday December 1st & Sunday December 2nd - 4:30 - 7:30 p.m.
LOVELAND, OHIO - The Deerfield and Loveland United Methodist Churches invite you, along with your friends and family, to join them for "The Living Nativity" - a presentation through drama and song of the account of the birth of Jesus, according to the gospels of Luke and Matthew.
When you arrive you will be received by parking lot attendants who will direct you to a greeting by the Bethlehem Singers . A hospitality team will then guide you past Roman Guards and introduce you to your tour guide, Luke.
You will witness the following events along the way:
Following your tour, you will enjoy special music that is being prepared for you.
There will be time to visit with the live animals.
There will be hot chocolate and Christmas cookies ready for your enjoyment.
Loveland United Methodist Church
10975 S. Lebanon Rd.
Loveland, OH 45140