August 26 2010

Birthdays — August 28–September 3

August 26, 2010 // 0 Comments

28th Alyssa Armstrong, Zachary Bearinger, Meg Brennan, Zachary Hone, Pat Kinney, Amanda Klein  29th Matthew Barton, Robert Hevia-Carter, Chad Elder, Russ Osbun  30th Courtney Corvers, Joanne Polasek 31st Paul Bartlett Sr., Scot Hay, Kelly McLelllan, Michael Reeds, Ken Rowley, Bob Tidey  SEPTEMBER 1st Millie Groen, Sarah McLellan, Scott Pratt 2nd Wanette Abshire, Brad Des Noyers, John Hone, Robby Kuntz, John Winks, Marilyn Ziomkowski 3rd Anna Ellen

The Tax Attic — by Jerry Coon — August 26, 2010

August 26, 2010 // 0 Comments

Business federal tax rules revised  The Internal Revenue Service is keeping busy this summer. In a previous article, I discussed various court cases that involved the IRS and taxpayers. Auditing taxpayers is one way the IRS keeps busy. Those audits from time to time develop into court cases. Another manner of staying busy is by revising the various rules under which businesses operate. They recently issued Proposed Regulation Number 153340-09 that revises, effective January 1, 2011, how businesses deposit and pay federal taxes. Currently, businesses have four choices to pay federal taxes. First, they can take a paper coupon, a Form 8109, and a check to a federal bank. The bank processes the check and scans in the coupon. The money and the coupon are then forwarded to the IRS. Unfortunately, errors occur in this system. Taxpayers complete the Form 8109 by hand, writing in the amount of the check and filling in a box that indicates the type of tax being paid. Anytime anyone handwrites anything, there are opportunities for error. Most people are dyslexic to some extent, and it’s very easy to write a check for $1,019.25 and enter $1,109.25 in the Form 8109 amount box. It’s also very easy to fill in the wrong box indicating the type of tax to be paid. Making either one of these errors causes all types of problems at a later time when the IRS tries to match the tax paid with the amount paid and type of tax paid on the coupon. It can and is a real mess. Second, the business can mail the Form 8109 and a check directly to a federal reserve bank. That brings a whole new set of problems into play. It’s called the United States Post Office. In this area, we mail our checks and coupons to the Federal Reserve bank located in St. Louis, Mo. If a tax payment is due on the 15th of the month, how many days before the 15th must the check and coupon be mailed for it to make it to St. Louis by the 15th? It should be three or four days, but it could be eight or nine days. It’s better to be safe than sorry. I know the Post Office […]

A Message for You

August 26, 2010 // 0 Comments

The gift of here and now by LAURIE TENHAVE-CHAPMAN First Congregational Church of Rockford I like to think of myself as an optimistic, carefree person. But I have this uncanny predisposition to see potentially dire mishaps in the simplest and safest of settings. For example, I might be watching a play in a beautiful, old Chicago theatre. I admire the chandelier gracing gilded ceilings. All of a sudden I’m thinking, “What if I were hanging off that chandelier? How long could I hang on? Would it hold my weight? What would the people below do to help me?” Or I’m driving behind a truck loaded with logs. Couldn’t one of those work itself loose and come right through my windshield? Before I can send out an S.O.S. I’m breathing into a bag and trying to snap my mind back to my very safe reality. Fortunately for me these are just ridiculous daydreams. My husband knows this about me and, when he sees a potentially hazardous situation, he will ask me with a grin, “Are you hanging from a chandelier?” Then we both laugh and get on with reality. Our imaginations can do a number on us. Jesus’ ministry was one of acting mercifully in the present moment even as danger lurked nearby. While the religious hotshots breathed threats against Him, He focused on the very real needs around Him: illness, loss and poverty. He didn’t waste His energies musing, “What if?” He took the 24 hours of each day He was granted in His short ministry to model a life of active, hands-on faith. So, whenever my mind drifts down some perilous rabbit hole, I pull myself right back out with a laugh. Then I focus on who God has placed before me that day so that I can make a difference for good. Thanks be to God for the very real opportunities placed before us each day. These keep us grounded in faith and focused on the gift of the here and now!

Obituaries — August 26, 2010

August 26, 2010 // 0 Comments

Ragsdale Mr. James “Rags” Ragsdale, age 66, of Rockford passed away unexpectedly on Friday, August 20, 2010. He grew up on the west side of Grand Rapids and delivered the newspapers from a very early age (often getting up at 4 a.m.). In 1962, he graduated from Union High School, where he played baseball. Jim enlisted in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam War, specialized in decoding, and left the service with a rank of Sergeant. After the service, Jim attended Grand Rapids Junior College, earning his associate’s degree in business. For many years he worked for Michigan National Bank and ATL Credit Union on 36th Street. Jim played fast-pitch softball and was the team manager, sponsored by Putt-Putts and The Thunder Chicken. He was a wonderful father who was involved in his sons’ sports, helped with coaching in community games, provided transportation, helped many young men set and achieve lifetime goals, and also taught sportsmanship. His home was always open to everyone; pick-up games were often played on most Sundays. Jim was also an avid golfer. Jim is survived by his son, Will and Melanie Ragsdale of Rockford; grandchildren, Sophia Ragsdale, Sam Kleynenberg, Eli Kleynenberg; mother, Mrs. Edith Ragsdale; sister, Liz Stoner; nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father, Cecil, and his son, Curtis Kleynenberg. The service for Jim was Monday at 11:00 a.m. at the Pederson Funeral Home with Pastor Bruce Wilson officiating. Military honors were under the auspices of the U.S. Air Force with interment in Blythefield Memory Gardens. Arrangements were made by Pederson Funeral Home, Rockford. Willett Mr. Roger “Buck” Willett, age 79, passed away on Wednesday, August 18, 2010. He grew up on the family farm at Blakely and M-44 (Belding Road) where he and his brother would herd the cows. In 1950 Roger graduated from Rockford High School. He played guard, played JV basketball, and participated in the FFA.  His parents moved to Cedar Springs when his father became their Chief of Police. Roger drove so he could still attend Rockford High School with this ‘37 Ford and later a ‘39 black Ford. He and Darlene were high school sweethearts who started dating in the tenth grade. After high school, Roger worked for a while […]

Words on Weather & Climate

August 26, 2010 // 0 Comments

  Weather is not climate   by CRAIG JAMES Everybody please repeat after me: weather is not climate, weather is not climate. It seems all the rage now days to blame every extreme weather event on what is called climate change (if it is a cold event) or global warming (if it is a warm event). But you simply cannot blame any one weather event, or even a short series of events, on climate change.   The big news this summer was the heat wave in Moscow and the flooding in Pakistan. What actually caused these events to happen? Very simply, the weather systems got stuck, or blocked from their normal west to east movement for a while. Here is the meteorological explanation: “The immediate cause of the problem is the behavior of the jet stream, a band of high-level wind that travels east around the world and influences much of the weather below it. Part of the jet stream’s meandering is tied to regular shifts of air towards and away from the pole, called Rossby waves. The Rossby waves set up wiggles in the jet stream, wiggles, which left to themselves, would move westward. Since the jet stream is flowing eastward, though, the net effect of the Rossby waves varies. When the waves are short, they go with the jet’s flow and the resultant wiggling heads downstream to the east. When they are long they go against the flow, and the jet’s wiggling is transmitted upstream to the west. In between, there is a regime in which the waves move neither west nor east, and the weather stays put.” When weather patterns get stuck, extremes of temperature and precipitation always occur. It is not, as an article in last Sunday’s Grand Rapids Press stated “a sign of troubling climate change already under way.” Even NOAA, one of the world’s biggest promoters of global warming said on August 13: “…greenhouse gas forcing fails to explain the 2010 heat wave over western Russia. The natural process of atmospheric blocking, and the climate impacts induced by such blocking, are the principal cause for this heat wave.” Also, “The extreme surface warmth over western Russia during July and early August is mostly a product of the strong and […]

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