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Sweet Home, Oregon
February 27, 2008     The New Era Paper
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February 27, 2008

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- February 27, 2008 ~OUR CONMUNITV Page 7 Oak Heights readies musical Faith Swaney who will play Au- rora in next week's production of the musical "Sleeping Beauty" gets some primping from Becky Douglas, an "artist in education" from Corvallis, prior to a dress rehearsal Monday. The play, di- rected by Kathy lves and put on by Oak Heights sixth-graders, backed by the fifth-grade choir, will be performed for students on Wednesday and Thursday, March 5 and 6, and for the public at 7 p.m, on March 6. Then they will take their show on the road Fri- day for performances at Twin Oaks and Wiley Creek retirement centers. At right, the fairies and a princess have their costumes examined. Photos by Sean C. Morgan From page I 253 were absent. On Feb. 12, 45 staffmembers, ap- proximately 13 percent, were absent. and the subs were sick too. with only 69 percent of positions filled. "There's been a lot of things going around the state," said Tammy McCoy, Linn County Health De- partment nursing supervisor. The flu vaccines this year were partially effective. The most important things to remember are to wash your hands, cover your mouth when you cough and stay home if you're sick, Mc- Coy said. After two or three mild flu sea- son, this year's flu season started out relatively low, said Dr. Joe Bresee, branch chief of the Branch of Epi- demiology and Prevention with the CDC Influenza Division, during a media update given in a nationwide conference call on Feb. 14. The num- ber of states reporting widespread influenza activity increased from 31 to 44 the week of Feb 7. and 10 children had died nationwide. Two weeks ago, according to Dr. Nancy Cox, director of the CDC Influ- enza Division, 49 states were report- ing widespread activity in the most recent figures available, and Florida was reporting regional activity. The death toll increased to 22. Stepping back from a three-year look at influenza activity to a 10- year perspective, Cox said, "what you would see is that we really are within the normal parameters of what we would expect for an influenza season." The flu season started with a mild strain predominant, but that changed to an apparently more severe strain, Bresee said. Those kinds oif changes can affect how well a vaccnne works, he said. Ideally, a group of peoplle who are vaccinated are exposed to sttrains that match the vaccination. Bressee said. "In those years, we'd expect somewhere between 70 an4d 90 per- cent protection against imfluenza- specific disease, and so if you think about that as a benchmark what we find is that each year the effectiveness of the vaccine actually varies a bit, and it varies for multiple reasons." "When the vaccine vinus doesn't match perfectly against the circulat- ing strains, we do see some effective- ness, though it's not 70-90 percent. Slightly more than half of the viruses that we are looking at in our lab are viruses that are somewhat different than the vaccine strains. So it may not be well-covered by the vaccine strains. "Even in those years where the vaccine matches less well against circulating strains, we know that get- ting vaccinated will tend to make the illnesses milder, lessen the chances a person has a very severe outcome." "It looks like it may be leveling off a bit, but it's difficult to know." Cox said. "Our index of influenza-like illness increased in six of the nine regions compared to last week and actually was above the region-specific baselines in all of our nine regions. "So I think that what we can say is that influenza activity has continued to mcrease, but not quite as dramati- cally as the increases that we had seen over the previous two weeks. "We really can't predict the severity or the duration of influenza season But looking at the data. it does suggest that we may be nearing the peak within the next few weeks." Balanced Bookkeeping and TAX SERVICE 30 years Exper/ence 541-367-7581 541-367-6632 Fax 541-451-4225 aes. "Small Busiruess Specialist!" Lola Stephens L.T.C. #1664 898 B Main Street Sweet Home, OR 97386 e Call me for no-hassle prices on new or used: Chevrolet Toyota Scion Pre-owned and Certified ,gee them all at: www.lassenauto.com (541) 926-4236 Karl Denison Lasswell (541} 258-4829 1133 Main Street, Lebanon DENILASS BUSINESS & TAX SERVICES Affordable Individual ncome Tax Preparation, Payroll, Bookkeeping & Business Services To give real service you must add something which cannot be bought or measured with money, and that is sincerity and integrity. -Donald A. Adams Gerry Severns Owner from Wal. rt i. Lebanon, Ematl: By Mike Bosso For The New Era Answer yourself quickly and don't think: What makes me more nervous? a) the idea of a recession? or, b) a booming economy? What was your answer? If you think I'm insane for choosing b) a booming economy makes me more nervous then keep reading and see if you can identify where the insanity really is. Consider first the saying "Defini- tion of Insanity: Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting dif- ferent results." The phrase has been attributed to either Benjamin Franklin or Albert Einstein. And while both are well known for thinking outside the box. I like to think it was said by Einstein, a confirmed physicist, as we understand it. Can the laws of physics, the laws of the universe, be applied to economics? Let's see. When we're in a booming econ- omy and markets have consistently been reaching new highs for some time, that's when I start sweating. Eventually, something has to give. Nothing on this planet stays up forever as another great physi- cist found out in an apple orchard. Now--lots of things fell to the ground before Newton "discovered" this force of nature we call gravity; he just got the naming creds. The naming of it came far on the heels of reality. Such is science. Markets and economies can't go up at the same rate forever. Eventu- ally, they always come back to earth, or more accurately, back to reality and balance. And when they're in the process of doing so, economists and investors don't call this return to rationality gravity, they call it recession. The Good News It's said you can't "call" a re- cession until six months after it's begun. Now that seems a subjective exercise in hindsight if I've ever seen one. So like the naming of a concept like gravity or anything ellse, it's al- ready a thing before someonegives it a label. It's already haappening. Ask an economist. You will have been dipped in it for 6 momths before anyone tells you about it and guess what? You're still OK. ~aZou are still here. This economic graviqty we call recession ,historically last:s between just six and 14 months. And anyone who's either married or has children knows they can do that kitnd of time standing on their heads. The Better News But unlike an apple that hits the dirt and composts, economies don't believe in rotting in place. True economies are dynamic: they bounce and roll and take off agaim. Here's why. Once a r'ecession is finally "called," certain catalysts set in place six or so months prior (does that number ring a bell?), begin to work their science and magic. Federal Reserve rate cuts and government stimulus packages start to kick in. Employment generally receives a much-needed boost. We'll save the discussion of government spending on opaque and unneeded projects for another article. Enough to say it probably contributes to the problem All of that wonde~rful, busy, economic activity that hits just 6 to 14 months after a recession officially begins, historically kicks off a new growth cycle that can last a decade or more. So, if we can accept that eco- nomic gravity is natural and healthy, then why do politicians, economists, and the general news naedia spend so much time fighting the laws of the universe? The Business of ?News They fight it, becamse they're invested in perpetuating the insanity, invested in keeping the elephant in the living room. Because as long a~ the public percetves an enormous, ~stinky mess, it makes for good newvs copy. It gives economists an excuse to leave Tax exemption offered for GI's If you are an Oregon resident on active military duty and own your home. you may qualify for the active duty military service member's prop- erty tax exemption. Up to $60,000 of the assessed value of your home may be exempt. If you are serving in the Oregon National Guard or military reserve force, and ordered to federal active duty (under Title 10) or deployed under the Emergency Management Assistance Compact on or after Jan. 1, 2005, you may qualify for this exemption. Your service must be at least 179 consecutive days. You may claim an exemption for each property tax year within which you servecd at least one day of service. If the qualified serwice member died while on active dmty status, the occupant of the home may file for the exemption. File claims with the county as- sessor where your home is located. All claims must incluLde copies of your military orders. Claim forms, inst~ructions, and more information are available on the state Department ~of Revenue's Web site, www.oregc~n.gov/DOR/ PTD, or at your coun~ty assessor's office. the think tank and breathe unfiltered air (arguably a good or bad thing). Remember too - we're in the heat of an election cycle. Either side would dearly love to be seen as the hero. Or failing that. leave the other side holding a big bag of elephant dung. The perception of chaos and turmoil makes simply fantastic fertilizer for sound bytes. Our fear, uncertaint, y~ and doubt works for them. Artificially gluing the apple back on the tree time and time again is the definition of insanity. It just prolongs the agony and sets the stage for a big- ger bump on the head when it does fall. and it will. Gravity happens. Recession of some magnitude will happen. It will last approximately between six and 14 months. We will survive and recover. So once again, please just let recession happen so we can start to recover and move forward. Let's have our correction so we can birth another decade of growth and in- novation. We're already falling and bouncing. " -~ Let's roll. Mike Bosso is an independent financial advisor who lives in Sweet Home and is based in Portland. He deals in securities provided by Pacific West Securities, a member of FINRA/SIPC. amd provides ad- visory services through Pacific West Financial Consultants, a registered investment advisor. Ads encouraging taxpayers to donate old vehicles to char- I ity are everywhere. Be aware that the tax deduction you're I allowed for such a donation is the amount the charity is able to sell your car for, not its "blue book" or other esti- II mated value. The charity must send Form 1098-C to both the donor and the IRS if the vehicle's value exceeds $500. II Greg Beisner, CPA 1327 Long Street Sweet Home I 367-1040 ~ i l m l IiWB l l l Illlnu l I l Il Illllll I II~ ! L ,'5 P, ookkeeph ; Tax Service, Inc. 60 VV Ash S t Lebanon OR 97355- IIIllllrlll -- ~ We're what bookkeeping and taxes are all about! I(atrina Long ,29. Shei[a Sneddon 541-451.-2877 LTC2's ?q [~nrolled G~re, nrs Fax: 541~i51~2905 I(atrina lsbookkcep nq~({t comcast.net Sheila I ~booltkeei~irLt{( ,~ cornea si .n er Janice M. Horner, CPA TAX PLANNING AND PREPARATION OUT OF STATE RETURNS BUSINESS CONSULTING FINANCIAL STATEMENTS & AUDITS ACCOUNTING AND PAYROLL SERVICES EVENING AND WEEKEND APPOINTMENTS 884 PARK ST. LEBANON, OR 97355 (541) 259-1201 FAX: (541) 259-1208