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Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
Charles Town, West Virginia
May 15, 2012     Spirit of Jefferson Farmers Advocate
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May 15, 2012

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i I f! 1. Wednesday, May 16, 2012 News pirit of JEFFERSON and FARMER&apos;S ADVOCATE MARC FROM PAGE A1 Maryland Area Regional Com- muter officials to take part in Saturday afternoon's town hall in Charles Town, where commuters and others interested in the Pan- handle's transportation future can weigh in on a proposed shakeup to MARC's evening schedule. According to a news release from MARC, Riecks "will pro- vide attendees with advice on making their voices heard at the State Capitol." The current Brunswick Line drama has its roots in another standoff, when Panhandle law- makers were forced to scramble to get Maryland officials to stave off cuts in service. MARC's Brunswick Line begins at Union Station in D.C. and includes three stops in the Mountain State. Two of the stops are in Jefferson County, in Duf- fields and Harpers Ferry, and the 73-mile line ends at the Caperton Train Station in Martinsburg. In 2008, MARC agreed to continue service if West Virginia passengers would pay more for their tickets. The state of West Virginia doesn't include funding for MARC in its budget. A surcharge of $2 each way (or $80 per month) took effect at the start of 2009. It now contrib- utes about $200,000 annually to the MARC budget. Then late last year MARC of- ficials again proposed changes to the Brunswick Line. A spokes- man for MARC said West Vir- ginia commuters would see a curtailed schedule by the end of January, but that plan was de- railed after a Jan. 7 town hall in Charles town where dozens of Panhandle residents expressed their ire for the changes. Following a three-hour pub- lic hearing, Maryland Transit Administration Deputy Admin- istrator Simon R. H. Taylor as- sured the crowd of about 60 that MARC would listen to their dis- taste for the plan. which would have axed the Brunswick Line's last three evening stops. Opponents of the change said it would entice Panhandle resi- dents to drive to the station in Brunswick, Md.. to ensure they could work later and still catch a train home. More than 7,000 people rely on the Brunswick Line to get to and from work each weekday. Last month, MARC unveiled its latest tweak to the Brunswick Line schedule: West Virginia commuters riding the late train would switch in Brunswick to a designated PanTran bus to con- tinue the trip back to West Vir- ginia. To Riecks, the latest proposal is as bad or worse than the origi- nal, he explained Friday during ROBERT SNYDER Funding from the state of West Virginia is essential to keeping MARC service available to Eastern Panhandle resi- dents, says Charleston-based passenger train advocate J. Charles Riecks. He'll take part in a town hall Saturday in Charles Town. a visit to Martinsburg where he talked about MARC's future with state Sen. Herb Snyder, D-Jefferson, and other local of- ficials. The D.C. native - who fell in love with train travel as a young- ster headed cross-country to visit his maternal grandmother in Los Angeles in 1954 - would like to see MARC leave the Brunswick Line's service as is. With ever-higher gas prices as well as the environmental drawbacks to commuting by car from the Panhandle into D.C., trains must be part of West Vir- ginia's transportation future, Riecks said. "To me, the bottom line is the need for West Virginia and Maryland to enter into a partnership," he said. "West Virginia has to own up to the importance of MARC to its citizens here. What other way is there?" USPS FROM PAGE A1 ville, Harpers Ferry, Ran- son, Shepherdstown and Kear- neysville would not change. Previously, the Postal Service had announced the closure of thousands of post offices. "We do not an- nearby post office. The USPS also announced a voluntary early retirement incen- tive plan for more than 21,000 postmasters. The current program will take about two years or until Septem- ber 2014 to complete, said Tad Kelley, a post office spokesman. "We have listened to the com- $200 million," Manchin said in a telephone interview Thursday. "Two hundred million, that is how much this country spends in Afghanistan in one day." Manchin said the post of- fice serves an important func- tion to the country and said he has advised the postmas- ticipate that any- "I thing will begin think the postal service have had with hour chang- management problems. They are upside down. es until after we hold meetings for They took the path of least resistance, which all the post offic- was the wrong path." -- Sen. Joe Manchin es listed and we get community input and feedback," said Cathy Yarosky, Postal Service spokes- person in Philadelphia. Other options the Postal Ser- vice is considering include pro- viding mail delivery service to residents and businesses in cer- tain communities by either ru- ral carrier or highway contract route; contracting with a local business to create a Village Post Office, or offering service from a munity and many members of Congress and have decided we will not be closing the 3,700 post offices, including 150 in West Virginia, previously targeted," Tad Kelley said. One of those Congressional members is Sen. Joe Manchin. "It made me sick to my stom- ach when I heard they were plan- ning to close 3,700 rural post of- rices that would have saved them ter general Sen. Joe Manchin on where to make adjustments. "People depend on the post of_ fice. By taking them away it takes their lifeline, their medications, and their checks," Manchin said. "I think the postal service have had management problems. They are upside down. They took the path of least resistance, which was the wrong path." W.Va. woman sentenced to 5 years in foiled hit MARTINSBURG (AP) -- A West Virginia woman has been sentenced to five years in prison for trying to mange the murder of a Virginia resident. U.S. Attorney William J. Ihlen- feld II says 50-year-old Brenda Lee Swisher of Augusta was sen- tenced last week by U.S. District Judge John Preston Baily. Swisher pleaded guilty in Jan- uary to causing an individual to travel in interstate commerce from Virginia to Hampshire County to commit murder-for-hire. A criminal complaint says Swisher tried to hire an under- cover West Virginia State Police trooper for $3 ,5130 to kill the wife of a former boyfriend. The intend- ed victim lived in Strasburg, Va. Testing FROM PAGE A1 unemployment benefits, food stamps or other government aid made national news. His pro- posal attracted coverage from CNN, MSNBC, Fox News and other major news outlets. Blair in the past has defended his idea not as a means for pro- tecting businesses from wasted time and effort but chiefly as a way to send a message to "re- spect taxpayers and how their monies are spent." Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin this year successfully lobbied the Legislature to launch a com- prehensive investigation of sub- stance abuse in the state. The first-term Democrat asked law- makers to use database report- ing to examine opioid treatment program facilities, chronic pain management and other factors that influence drug use in West Virgima.. During the panel discussion, Duke said he'd like to see a faster move from evaluating the problem to finding a solution. "I'm not sure we need much more study," he said. "We need action." Other local lawmakers taking part in the panel included House members Eric Householder and John Overington, both Republi- cans, and Democrat Tiffany Law- fence as well as Herb Snyder, a Democrat who serves in the state Senate. W.Va. lawmaker changes mind, won't resign I WHEELING (AP) -- A Northern Panhandle legislator who pleaded guilty to drunken driving says he's changed his mind and won't resign from the House of Delegates. The InteUigencer and Wheel- ing News-Register reports that Democratic Del. Ryan Ferns of Ohio County says he won't re- sign, but hasn't decided wheth- er to withdraw his re-election bid. Ferns received more than 2,100 votes m an uncontest- ed party primary election last week. The 29-year-old Ferns said last month he would resign. He said Friday that he changed his mind because of an outpouring of public support. According to media reports, Wheeling police arrested Fems on April 20 after stopping his vehicle. Police say his blood al- cohol level was 0.229 percent. The legal limit is 0.08 percent. The first-term delegate plead- ed guilty last month and was f'med $500. I EA GAN S <" Downtown Chad. Town JEWELERS, INC. " 31N-725-7411 1 The law says everyone has an "estate". Who's getting yours? Established 1844 "No government ought to be without censors and where the press is free, no one ever will." -- Thomas Jefferson PUBLISHED EACH WEDNESDAY BY The Jefferson Publishing Co. Inc. PUBLISHER Craig See MANAGING EDITOR Robert Snyder editor@ EDITORIAL STAFF Bryan Clark, Reporter bryan Robert Smith, Copy Editor /Reporter news Christine Miller Ford, Life & Business Editor christine @ Bob Madison, Sports Editor BUSINESS STAFF Jennifer See, Cara Young officem, anager@ ADVERTISING DEPARTMENT Karen Bowers Advertising Manager GRAPHICS STAFF Kim Schell kim Sharon Snyder sharon Rachel Painter-Fields CIRCULATION STAFF Robert Smith ONLINE STAFF Rachel Painter-Fields CONTACTING US Office: 210 N. George St., Charles Town, W.Va. Mailing address: P.O. Box 966, Chades Town, WV 25414 Phone: 304-725-2046 # Fax: 304-728-6856 E-mail: editor@ ABOUT DELIVERY (USPS 510-960) Periodical postage paid at Charles Town, W.Va., and additional post offices POSTMASTER: Send Ad- dress Changes to The Spirit of Jefferson, P.O. Box 966, Charles Town, WV 25414 SUBSCRIPTION RATES: Yearly in Advance: $27 in West Virginia and $29.50 outside the state. Bo;;Youi:;i:iSei some00iing00'!0000i;saY B 111 would create coin hononng-- Pro Football Hall CHARLESTON (AP) Two The Hall of Fame is celebrating : !:::: .d: ::i>:::/ P:.:> 'ii ..::_:Y::: Z.:::?_:.-: Lk=:___ =: v.=::= ]::: :!::.::::: : U.S. senators want to create a com- memorative coin in recognition of the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, Ohio. West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin and Ohio Republican Rob Portman introduced legisla- tion Thursday that would authorize the U.S. Mint to create the coin. its 50th annivers .ary this year. Run- ning back Curtis Martin and five others will be inducted in August. Manchin says procee from the coin's sale would help support the Hall of Fame's efforts to preserve the history of football and acquire memorabilia. The bill comes at no cost to taxpayers. Professional Quality Service Done Right The First Time! NO NEED TO RUN TO THE BIG CITY Drive Less Than A Half Hour.... Come To Winchester: i?! i;iiiiiii@ii!Jiii!iiiii!iii!iiii ii:i!L;;ffi00iiiiii00ii!iii!iii00i!ii;ii00 ....... 3985 Valley Pike iiii@!il 2934 Valley Avenue David A. Camilletti Attorney At Law 103 W. Lil)erty St., Charles Town, WV (304) 72..-0937 * dcan]illetti> CRIMINAL DIVORCE ESTATE CONTESTS FOR QUICK LUBE & OIL CHANGES 3985 Valley Pike 'qMILLER Northern Shenandoah Valley's Largest Auto Group... tJ  Your Satisfaction Is Our Reputatlon...And Our Future. More W Va, students to get free meals CHARLESTON (AP) -- More West Virginia public school stu, dents will be allowed to eat breakfast and lunch at school for free beginning in the fall. State education officials say - West Virginia is one of only four states to be selected to participate in the Community Eligibility Op- tion for the coming school year. Under this program, if at least 40 percent of a school's students qualify for free meals, the entire school can participate. At least 293 schools in West Virginia al- ready qualify, which means thou- sands more children will get free meals every flay. West Virginia currently has a pilot program providing free meals for all students in Cabell, Clay, Fayette, Gilmer, Lincoln, Mason, McDowell and Mingo counties. I B=A'rEAT!THI POOLS, POOLS, POOLS [ Only *79700 19 x 31 x 4 Includes: f I