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Archive - Aug 2012 - Article

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August 25th

A new era for elementary schools

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A bustle of activity mixed with the hallowed sound of learning will meet anyone venturing into one of the city of Ruston’s four elementary schools.

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Education for hunters

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Before younger residents can get their shot at a hunting license, they must take the required Louisiana Hunter Education course.
For more than 20 years, Lincoln Parish Sheriff’s Deputy Mike Rainwater has taught this free three-day class to area residents.
Classes have already begun, and will be taught through mid-October.

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Take steps to save money, the Sparta

Due to the rising costs to supply water, and the high usage of this natural resource, the Town of Grambling plans to introduce an ordinance at its next meeting to increase water rates for its citizens.
The town is not alone either, as Choudrant recently approved an ordinance to increase its water rates, which will go into effect in September.

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Tech alum: Plan for gym a ‘travesty’

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As an architectural preservationist, and an alumnus of Louisiana Tech University, I find the school’s plan for the old gym a travesty. The article “Memorial Gym getting ‘facelift’” stated “The nostalgic and history-packed pecan basketball court” will be demolished in favor of a new “state-of-the-art” floor.  How will this new “state-of-the-art” floor be so much better than a rare still-intact example of a functional wooden basketball court?

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Keep the dinosaurs away

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I recently witnessed a rather heated discussion about whether or not dinosaurs roamed the Earth with man. The passion erupting on either side of the debate prevented the argument from being settled, but it planted a “dinosaur seed” in my mind. Then just days later, the seed sprouted.
Asked for an interview by a high-school student, I gladly obliged. I’m always happy to help students and needless to say, the thought of sitting and visiting was right up my alley.
He began by asking about my professional experience. I happily charted my path through all the different stops I’ve made along my journey as an educator, including some rather spectacular side jobs as well. I noticed his brow furrow just a bit as he went on to ask about my current job, and I described the different aspects of my duties within the Lincoln Parish School District. Now I realize that my job is somewhat perplexing to most because it’s not crafted around the typical job description, but I couldn’t imagine it so unusual that it was causing his eyes to now gather up with his brow.

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Hats off to local teachers

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Some of you know that your writer often wears a  hat. I do this because  of support for some sports team, university or high school, but there is the additional motive of keeping covered the evolving balding location.  So when I hear the phrase of “I take my hat off to” whomever or  whatever might be the honored of the moment, I privately chuckle, saying to myself that folks probably would not want me to take my hat off because of the blinding light that might reflect off the dome.

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GSU Fan and Media Day held Saturday

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Jeralyn Black shoots a basketball during Grambling State University’s Fan and Media Day. The event, held on Saturday at the Robinson Stadium Facility and Practice Field, was intended to prepare Tiger fans for the upcoming season, beginning on Sept. 1 against Alcorn State.

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REITs — is there time for them in my 401(k)?

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Question: I got my 401(k) statement and noticed that one of my fund options is investing in REITs, which has done very well so far this year. Would it be a good idea to put some of my 401(k) money into this since it has done so well?
 
Answer:  When you drive, it’s a good idea to look forward, out the front windshield.
Looking in the rear view mirror may give you a lovely view of where you have just been, but it is of little use to your forward progress and may cause a wreck.

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Strategies to help save income for retirement

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Editor’s note: This is the second of a two-part series focusing on retirement. The first part ran Aug. 19.
Consider using an Individual Retirement Account. Two types particularly deserve attention — traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs. Traditional IRAs tend to work best for people who believe they’ll be in a lower tax bracket during retirement and meet the criteria for making tax-deductible contributions.

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Keep income producers working hard, even with low rates

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Next week, we observe Labor Day, which honors all the hard-working men and women in the United States. As an investor, you’d like to think that all your investments are working hard, too — including the ones that are producing income.
But can your income-oriented investments be productive when short-term interest rates are at historic lows? Or can you find other investment possibilities that could potentially boost your cash flow? 
The answer to both these questions is “yes” — but you may have to take a closer look at where you stand on the risk-reward spectrum.

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