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Financial & Economy | G-Fin™ | Grants

Financial & Economy | G-Fin™ | Grants

Deplaning of United Passenger Shows Why We Need Corporate Regulation

In a democracy, We the People are in charge. We are the boss of the corporations. At least that’s how it’s supposed to work.

Apparently, that isn’t so much the way it is anymore. The United States used to regulate corporations to protect people from concentrated power. Now concentrated power has taken over our government, which fights the people for the benefit of corporate profits.

Or, to paraphrase John Kenneth Galbraith: In democracy, We the People regulate corporations. In deregulated America it’s the other way around.


The Face Of Deregulation

This is what can happen to you now in the United States if you get in the way of something a corporation wants:

We’ve all seen the videos. A guy gets beaten and dragged from his paid seat on a United Airlines flight because, in essence, he was interfering with corporate profits just by being in the seat. The airplane was full, the corporation decided it could make more money by moving some employees to another town, and a passenger was in the way.


Airline Deregulation

Airlines used to be regulated in the U.S. as a public utility that served citizens. They competed with each other by offering better service.

Then in 1978, airlines were deregulated and passengers were considered consumers instead of citizens. The airlines argued that more competition would bring benefits. Instead, as time passed, airlines did what corporations tend to do.

They consolidated, reducing competition. They reduced and reduced and reduced service to reduce costs. They cut employee wages and benefits. They changed routes to “hubs” for their convenience, causing passengers to have to wait hours in crowded airports. And they write contracts that said you can’t use their (essential) service without signing away every right you have.

Since deregulation, airlines intentionally overbook many flights. They scrunch as many people into smaller and smaller seats just inches from the next, and sell you more legroom. Instead of serving food, they sell it. They charge you if you travel a suitcase. They charge you to bring a travel bag on the plane.

Soon, they will put a large spike in the seat and charge you to shorten it.

And you can’t do anything about it. You can’t even complain without risking being considered “disruptive” and dragged from the airplane and jailed. And be careful how you dress.


Not Just Airlines

It’s not just airlines. All kinds of corporate deregulation have been harming We the People. There used to be regulations requiring broadcast media to act in the public interest in exchange for use of publicly-owned broadcast frequencies. Now, obviously, there isn’t.

Pollution rules are being deregulated. Pesticides that harm children are being deregulated. The list is long.

“Arbitration clauses” are now used in all kinds of contracts and agreements to keep you from being able to take corporations to court. “Tort reform” laws also restrict access to courts when people are harmed by corporations.

You get the idea.


“Burdensome” Regulations

Corporations complain that regulations are “burdensome.” They complain that regulations cost them money.

Of course, regulations that stop corporations from polluting streams place a “burden” on them to properly dispose of waste. Of course it costs money to require them to not just dump waste into rivers, streams, and the air we breath.

Carmakers used to complain that rules requiring seat belts in cars were a “burden.” Tobacco companies used to complain that stopping them from selling cigarettes to kids “cost money.” So far, government regulation has protected us from these abuses-for-profit. But for how long?


Who Is Our Country FOR?

Americans have lost our understanding of the meaning of democracy and of the powers democracy brings us and duties it places on us. We have become consumers instead of citizens and we think that markets should make decisions for us instead of our votes.

In a democracy, We the People are supposed to be in charge. In a democracy, our government by definition exists to serve us, protect us, and do things for us that make our lives better.

A democracy regulates corporations to protect people from concentrated power. If we let concentrated power make decisions for us, we end up getting dragged off of airplanes because the corporation decided the seat we paid for would make them a bit more profit.

Corporations should be regulated to serve the public interest. Why else would We the People want to allow these things called corporations to exist at all?

~~  Dave Johnson ~~

ED Programs Set To Lose Another $3 Billion

A plan to fund defense spending would eliminate billions more from the federal education budget for the rest of this fiscal year
The Free Press WV

Donald Trump is asking Congress to cut almost $3 billion from the federal education budget for the remainder of the fiscal year, according to a document obtained by Politico.

The memo offers an in-depth look at some of the proposed cuts and program eliminations.

These latest cuts are in addition to next year’s proposed budget, which would see $9 million slashed from the U.S. Department of Education.

The cuts are intended to increase military spending and finance the construction of a wall on the U.S.-Mexico border.

Congress must pass a plan to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year to avoid a partial government shut-down. As Bloomberg News reports, Congress is likely to reject the White House’s additional proposed budget cuts, which total nearly $18 million in all, making the prospect of a shutdown all the more real.

The proposed additional cuts would cut $1.3 billion from this year’s Pell grant surplus–this is on top of the cuts proposed for next year.

Title II, Part A funding, which helps ensure teacher and principal quality and preparedness through PD programs, would be cut in half this year. As previously reported, Trump’s FY 2018 budget would eliminate the program entirely.

“This program provides formula grants to States to improve instruction and reduce class sizes,” the document states. “Funding is poorly targeted and supports practices that are not evidence-based. Other funding at ED can be used to support improved instruction.”

The Striving Readers program, which helps fund literacy instruction in low-income schools, also faces elimination. “A recent study found that more than half of the reading interventions used by grantees had no effects on student achievement. Also, other funding at ED (e.g. Title I grants) can be used to support literacy instruction,” according to the document.

Under President Trump’s proposed FY 2018 education budget, school choice would receive a massive $1.4 billion while the Education Department undergoes a $9 billion, or 13 percent, cut.

Overall, the proposed education budget cuts the Education Department’s budget from $68 million to $59 billion.

Title I funds would receive a $1 billion increase, but the funds would follow individual students should they decide to change schools.

IDEA funding for programs that support students with special needs and disabilities would remain stable at $13 billion.

In a statement, AFT President Randi Weingarten said the proposed education budget “takes a meat cleaver to public education.”

~~  Laura Ascione ~~

State Extends Application Deadline for Higher Education Grant Program Until May 01, 2017

The Free Press WV

West Virginia’s Higher Education Policy Commission (HEPC) and Community and Technical College System (CTCS) today announced that this year’s application deadline for the need-based Higher Education Grant Program has been extended until 11:59 p.m. on Monday, May 01, 2017. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which is the only application required for the grant, can be completed at https://fafsa.ed.gov.  

The state extended the deadline because of a technology issue at the federal level. Last month, the U.S. Department of Education and Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced an outage of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool, which allows students and parents to electronically access, review and transfer tax information required for the FAFSA. Federal officials are working to correct the issue, but estimate the tool will be unavailable until at least next fall.  

“The Higher Education Grant is a lifeline to college for thousands of low-income students in our state, and we want to ensure that they and their families have ample time to complete the necessary steps to apply,” said Paul Hill, HEPC Chancellor.

“We still encourage completion of the FAFSA as soon as possible, but we hope this extension allows as many students as possible to be considered for the grant, which paves the way for so many of our community and technical college students,” said Sarah Tucker, CTCS Chancellor.

Like in previous years when the IRS Data Retrieval Tool was not an option, students and parents can estimate their income information on the FAFSA and correct the information later, if necessary, in order to meet financial aid deadlines.

If students or their parents do not have a paper or electronic copy of the necessary tax form available – which for this year is the 2015 tax return – they can access it online at www.irs.gov/transcript . A hard copy can be requested by calling 1.800.908.9946 and a transcript will be delivered to the address on record within 5-10 days.

For help completing the FAFSA or applying for financial aid, West Virginia students and families can call the HEPC and CTCS financial aid office at 888-825-5707 or visit the state’s free college-planning website at www.cfwv.com.

Trump’s Budget: More for Defense

The Free Press WV

Trump’s FY18 Budget Blueprint came out this morning.

Well, not the whole budget but just the “discretionary” portion of the budget. And the message is simple. There is $54 billion more for defense and $54 billion less for everything else.

Let’s see. $54 billion in a $1,065 billion discretionary budget? That’s a change of about five percent. Yay!

But, of course, it gores a bunch of liberal sacred cows:

AgencyFY18 Change
in $ billion
Agriculture-4.7
Commerce-1.5
Defense+52.4
Education-9.2
Energy-1.7
Health and
Human Services
-12.6
Homeland
Security
+2.8
HUD-6.2
Interior-1.5
Justice-4.0
Labor-2.5
State and Intl Aid-10.9
Corps of Engrs-1.0
EPA-2.6

It’s all in Table 2. 2018 Discretionary Overview by Major Agency, in the Trump Budget Blueprint.

All this is in “Budget Authority,“ which is not the same as actual spending, or “Outlays.“ And it represents $1,065 billion out of a $4,000 billion budget. The remaining $3 trillion in “mandatory” spending is yet to come.

And with the rest of the budget will come the all-important Historical Tables on which the data in usgovernmentspending.com is based.

What about the mandatory spending? Right now, FY18 spending for Social Security is budgeted at $1,031 billion and Medicare at $608 billion. President Trump says he is not going to touch them, so that’s all right. Then there is Medicaid at $568 billion and I don’t know what will happen there, what with Trumpcare and all.

I suppose all liberals all over the nation are going to be screaming their heads off at this budget. Why is this?

The answer is that the programs that liberals really love are the regulatory programs that employ liberals to order the rest of us around. Most of the federal budget consists of handouts of free stuff to middle-class people that cannot be touched. But where liberals really live is where the power lies. And for the last 100 years, power issues from the arbitrary rules and regulations of the administrative state. To make us safe. To save the planet.

I am always amazed at how we manage to scream and yell about the tiniest things in politics. Wow! A cut of $2.7 billion at the Environmental Protection Agency! It’s the End of the World!

If only.

But I tell you what intrigues me. It’s the $4.0 billion cut at the Department of Justice. There is nothing about this in the one-page summary for the Department of Justice in the Blueprint. There is a cryptic note about “mandatory spending changes involving the Crime Victims Fund and the Assets Forfeiture Fund.“ So what is going on?

Could it be that the Trumpists are taking the “negative spending” from fines and asset forfeitures away from the Justice Department and putting them into the general revenue—you know, taxes—that goes direct to the Department of Treasury.

If I were president, I would eliminate all “negative spending” where individual agencies get to keep monies like fees and fines and Medicare premiums instead of the money going to the Treasury.

In my administration all money collected by the Feds would be general revenue, and all money would go through the Treasury.

Free Income Tax Preparation Assistance at GSC

Free assistance is being offered again through a partnership between the Internal Revenue Service and the Glenville State College accounting program to help students, faculty, staff, and local residents file their basic federal and West Virginia income tax returns. Two options are available to qualifying taxpayers – ‘MyFreeTaxes’ and Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Free File.

GSC students, Moriah CreelFox, Robert (Simeon) Kees, and Tyler Wood, who are IRS-certified and enrolled in GSC’s Accounting 399 course, are available to assist qualifying taxpayers who need help preparing their basic Federal and West Virginia income tax returns. The students are under the supervision of Site Coordinator and GSC Associate Professor of Business and Accounting Cheryl McKinney, CPA, MPA, CGMA. McKinney also serves as the chair for the Department of Business. Creelfox is from Orma, Kees is from Oak Hill, and Wood is from Weston; all three are accounting majors.

The Free Press WV
GSC student income tax volunteers
(standing L-R) Tyler Wood, Simeon Kees, and Moriah Creelfox
with VITA Site Coordinator Cheryl McKinney


Available again this year is ‘MyFreeTaxes,’ which is an easy, fast, and secure federal and state tax filing site provided through the United Way and powered by H&R Block software. The online tool allows eligible taxpayers with household adjusted gross incomes up to $64,000 annually to self-prepare and electronically file both federal and state returns free of charge by visiting http://www.myfreetaxes.com and following the easy steps.

Taxpayers who prefer to have a trained volunteer assist in the tax filing process or have questions about using MyFreeTaxes can go to Room 309B of the Administration Building (the Ernie Smith Computer Lab). The volunteers will be available now through April 18 on Tuesdays and Thursdays between 3:00-6:30 p.m. with no appointment necessary. Note that no one will be available March 21 or 23 because of GSC’s Spring Break.

Participants seeking assistance at the GSC VITA site may choose the TurboTax Freedom Edition (Intuit), Second Story Tax Act, On-Line Taxes (OLT), or H&R Block Free File programs based upon eligibility criteria. Once an account is created at the GSC location, it may be accessed from anywhere.

Those who wish to receive this free tax assistance should bring: a copy of their 2015 tax return, Wage and Earnings Statements (Form W-2) from all employers, Interest and Dividend Statements (Form 1099), any additional relevant information or forms relating to income and expenses, as well as bank routing and account numbers for direct deposit/direct payment, if desired.

Students who received financial aid and/or paid tuition and fees should also bring a copy of their Tuition Statement (Form 1098-T) provided by the school that lists tuition and fees paid and scholarships received.

For more information, contact McKinney at or 304.462.6263.

Ball Now In WV GOP’s Court On Budget

The Free Press WV

It would be unfair, as well as overly simplistic, to suggest that Governor Justice’s proposed budget for next fiscal year is dead on arrival at the Legislature.  After all, Justice’s plan, which raises $450 million in general revenue taxes, while only cutting $27 million in spending, is the only proposed budget that exists currently.

The Governor submits a budget to lawmakers with this implied instruction: “If you have a better idea, let’s see it.”  In this case, that puts the ball in the court of the Republican majorities in the Senate and the House of Delegates.

The reaction of Republican leaders to Justice’s massive tax increase and miniscule cuts ranged from disappointment to flabbergast and even anger. They were operating under the assumption, based on comments by Justice Chief of Staff Nick Casey on Talkline just a few days ago, that the administration was contemplating cuts of between $390 and $600 million.

House and Senate Republicans held a rare joint caucus Thursday to review the Governor’s budget and plan a strategy.  House Speaker Tim Armstead and Senate President Mitch Carmichael, appearing together on Talkline, agreed that they would now assume responsibility for developing a counter proposal that includes significant cuts.

The key for the GOP will be to ready that proposal quickly.  The longer they wait, the more it will appear that the Republicans cannot unify on the deep and potentially painful cuts they have been lobbying for.

Justice pleaded with lawmakers, and for that matter the entire state, during his State of the State address to support his tax increases.  His appeal was emotion; he hates tax increases, but it’s the only way out.  That pitch will no doubt work with those who have put their trust in Justice to lead the state out of the economic doldrums. To them, digging into their pockets for a few more bucks is a necessary, perhaps temporary, part of the plan.

But for others, it’s simple math.  State Chamber of Commerce President Steve Roberts says the proposed .20 percent tax on the gross revenues of businesses, along with eliminating sales tax exemptions for professional services and advertising, add up to about $300 million in new taxes on business, and that’s not the business-friendly message that Justice sold during the campaign.

We understand that campaigns are given to hyperbole and vague promises that are difficult to fulfill once in office, and the fact that Justice has made a 180 degree turn from what he said during the campaign about taxes is a fair criticism.  However, perhaps Justice’s greatest mistake prior to the election was to say repeatedly that turning around West Virginia would not be that hard.

As the new Governor is finding out, which many already knew or suspected, reversing the fortunes of West Virginia will be incredibly difficult.

~~  Hoppy Kercheval ~~

Alternative Budget To Governor’s Proposal

The Free Press WV

West Virginia Governor Jim Justice has proposed a responsible budget that will generate new revenues, create jobs and invest in the Mountain State’s future. If no revenue measures are passed, West Virginia will be faced with drastic cuts that will put thousands of hardworking men and women out of work and eliminate critical agencies and programs from state government.​

HERE is a link to download the alternative budget.

Voucher Plan Seen as Backdoor Medicare Cuts

Economists and seniors’ groups say a plan in Congress to make Medicare into a voucher system will shift substantial costs onto older Americans.
The Free Press WV

A plan in Congress to change the structure of Medicare is being called a threat to seniors’ health and finances by economists and advocates, including the seniors’ advocacy group AARP.

Led by House Speaker Paul Ryan, Republicans have voted to change Medicare from paying doctors directly to giving seniors vouchers they can use to buy private insurance – much like the subsidies in the insurance exchanges under the Affordable Care Act.

Elise Gould, a senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute, says that type of “premium support” would mean deep cuts in the program over time.

She warns to make up the difference, seniors would either have to pay thousands of dollars more out of pocket, or reduce the amount of medical care they get.

“Who’s going to pay for that?” she asks. “Patients and consumers – American citizens, the elderly people in this country – are then going to be saddled with those burdens. And that’s not actually going to lower costs overall.“

Ryan calls the cuts necessary because growing costs threaten to bankrupt the system.

But Gould argues the real problem is the overall cost of health care. She says Medicare’s costs are growing more slowly than private insurance, especially since the passage of health care reform.

Gould says it’s strange to hear people who call the ACA, or Obamacare, a disaster, argue in favor of making Medicare more like it.

She agrees that forcing people to pay more of the cost of their own care would do little to slow health care inflation, and could actually reduce the use of cheaper, preventive care, which the current Medicare system encourages.

“Medicare has been the leader in being able to restrain cost growth, and so that should be the model that we follow,” she states. “I don’t believe that that private competition is actually going to get you any cash savings in the long run.“

The current Medicare system is extremely popular among the 57 million Americans enrolled in it. West Virginia has a larger portion of its population enrolled in the program than almost any other state.

~~  Dan Heyman ~~

New Taxes Could Also Be Part Of The Budget Fix

The Free Press WV

With a budget shortfall of as much as $500 million looming next fiscal year, much of the talk among state leaders has been where and how to cut between 10 to 15 percent of the General Revenue budget. However, there are also discussions about finding new revenue through tax increases.

Senate Minority Leader Roman Prezioso (D-Marion) is a former chair of the finance committee and he knows how difficult it will be to make cuts that deep. “I don’t think it’s realistic,” he told me on Talkline Thursday. “You’re going to have to get into situations you just don’t want to get into.”

And that leads Prezioso to believe new taxes have to be part of the solution. “I don’t think you have any other choices,” he said.

If there is a tax increase proposal, one of the likely targets is the six percent consumer sales tax. It’s a broad tax that brings in a lot of money — between $1.2 and $1.3 billion this year — and it’s easy to collect. Raising it to seven percent would bring another $180-$190 million annually.

However, the seven percent rate would be higher than any of the five surrounding states. Additionally, a number of municipalities have added their own sales tax, meaning their rate would be pushed even higher.

Another potential revenue target is the goods and services that are exempt from the state consumer sales tax, and there are dozens of them.  A few are so small — like the sales tax exemption for U.S. and West Virginia flags — that they are inconsequential, but others represent substantial amounts of money.

Food for home consumption is exempt. Reinstituting the six percent sales tax on groceries would generate about $170 million annually. Taxing lawyers, accountants and other professional services would bring in about $150 million. Removing the exemption on certain media advertising would raise an estimated $27 million. Taxing prescription drugs could, theoretically, raises tens of millions of dollars.

The list goes on and on, but you get the idea. Every exemption was added to the tax code because it had a constituency group that fought to get it there, so removing it would generate a political battle. And can you imagine the outcry if the state tried to tax grandma’s medicine?

There is another option that’s being talked about — removing most of the sales tax exemptions, but lowering the rate. Members of the state Senate are considering that idea, but that’s a heavy lift to try to accomplish in the upcoming session and it likely would not generate additional revenue in the short term to help plug the massive budget hole.

As we’ve said before, given the magnitude of the state’s budget shortfall, there are no good options.  Neither the new Governor nor most lawmakers want to raise taxes. However, as Prezioso said, “When legislators look at the magnitude of what needs to be cut and how it affects certain areas, they may change their mind.”

~~  Hoppy Kercheval ~~

Free FAFSA Assistance at GSC

The Free Press WV

Glenville State College Financial Aid employees will host a workshop on Tuesday, January 31 from 4:00 to 6:00 p.m. in the Robert F. Kidd Library. The event allows students and families to receive free, confidential support in completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Anyone interested in college enrollment for the 2017-2018 school year should consider attending the workshop. Graduating high school seniors, adults looking to start or return to college, and current college students should complete FAFSAs to determine the level of financial aid they may qualify for. Parents who wish to learn more or to complete the form on behalf of their student also may attend. On average, it takes about 30 minutes to complete a FAFSA.

“Completing the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, commonly called the FAFSA, is a critically important first step in applying for federal and state financial aid. This one document holds the key to determining eligibility for most programs,” said GSC Financial Aid Counselor Mary Jones.

To complete the FAFSA, students will need social security numbers for themselves and their parents and family income for 2015. If income information is not available, a FAFSA can be submitted using estimated information that can be corrected when the actual income information becomes available. FAFSAs must be submitted by March 01, 2017 to receive the Promise Scholarship and April 15, 2017 for the West Virginia Higher Education Grant.

Participants will be eligible for door prizes.

For additional information, visit the GSC Financial Aid office on the first floor of Louis Bennett Hall or contact 304.462.4103.

Social Security’s ‘Magic Age’ Changes

The Free Press WV

Social Security retirement benefits have just changed.

These retirement benefits have been an important and welcome part of the retirement plan for most everyone. Just get to the magic age and the government pays you a monthly pension. Now that magic age has changed.

The retirement part of Social Security has moved slowly so that the age necessary for full benefits has increased, but not much until this year. The original rules granted “full retirement age” of 65 to become eligible for a retirement benefit, with a slight increase in benefits if the worker delayed to as late as age 70.

Later, the law changed to grant retirees the option to start benefits as early as age 62. Thus, those eligible for benefits could choose any starting age between 62 and 70, with an adjustment to benefits for starting earlier or later than full retirement age.

Problems arose with adequate funding for the entire program so the law changed some 30 years ago to increase full retirement age itself. The age became a moving target, increasing over decades from the original age 65, up to age 67.

For the past decade, upon reaching age 62, prospective retirees had a full retirement age of 66, but beginning in 2017, those turning age 62 this year are not actually eligible for full benefits at age 66. Instead, the full retirement age has shifted to age 66 and 2 months, and by 2022 will rise all the way to a full retirement age of 67 (for those born in 1960 or later).

Simply put, you must wait an additional two months before you can receive the same amount of Social Security retirement. The reality is that nothing can be done about the changes to the full retirement age. The law was passed more than 30 years ago, and has slowly phased in, based on the retiree’s birth year. Obviously, you cannot change your birth year.

Furthermore, it is important to recognize that the increase in full retirement age makes the adverse consequences of starting at age 62 a little more severe and reduces the advantage of waiting until age 70. The significance of the increase in full retirement age from 66, to 66 and 2 months, is that now trying to take benefits at 66 is actually an “early” benefits election, resulting in a 1.1 percent reduction for starting payments two months before full retirement age.

For those who want to start as early as possible, age 62, the early start is now four years and two months not just four years. The benefits reduction is now 25.83 percent instead of just 25 percent. Similarly, delaying to the maximum age 70 would not earn four years’ worth of Delayed Retirement Credits, but instead only three years and 10 months of credits, for a total increase of 30.67 percent instead of the “full” 32 percent.

The result is simply that benefits are no longer quite as high. At any given age, Social Security benefits are reduced and the entire scale has shifted to older ages.

A cynical response might be that each retiree has given up as much as $5,000 (two months) of income over their life, essentially writing a check for that amount to Social Security. A more practical response is that you must simply adjust your schedule and plans. Keep in mind that Social Security was intended originally to be a social safety net, not a regular pension plan. It has evolved in the public’s mind to be the latter, which arguably is a mistake.

The lesson is to be realistic and take charge of your personal finances. This includes a healthy skepticism of government programs and products offered by the financial industry which claim to solve all your concerns. They don’t. Risk will continue to exist and you must have a plan that respects the risks and gives you room to adjust.

NPG 2017 Essay Scholarship Contest 2017

The Free Press WV

Negative Population Growth (NPG), a national membership organization devoted to population issues, invites students to compete in our annual Essay Scholarship Contest. The contest is open to high school senior or a college freshman, sophomore, or junior enrolled in an official undergraduate program of study for the fall 2017 semester. The purpose of organization educates the American public and elected officials regarding the damaging effects of overpopulation on our environment, resources, and quality of life. Winners will receive multiple awards ranges from $1,000 to $2,000.

Negative Population Growth, Inc. (NPG) is a national nonprofit membership organization. It was founded in 1972 to educate the American public and political leaders about the devastating effects of overpopulation on our environment, resources and standard of living.

Eligibility:

  • Applicant must be a U.S. Citizen or legal permanent resident.
  • Applicant must be a senior in high school or a college freshman, sophomore, or junior enrolled in an official undergraduate program of study for the fall 2017 semester.
  • Applicant must be 14 years old or older.
  • Applicant must be currently enrolled in or attending an accredited school within the United States or operated overseas by the U.S. government, for the fall 2017 semester.
  • Applicant must sign and date the Application Form. (A parent or guardian signature is also required for all applicants under 18.)
  • Relatives of employees or directors of NPG are not eligible.
  • Not valid where prohibited.

How to Apply:

“President Donald Trump and the more than 50 new Members of the 115th Congress should learn about the critical issue of U.S. population size and growth.  Students are requested to provide NPG with a three- to five-point plan to educate these freshmen legislators about the sources of U.S. population growth, as well as policy suggestions to slow, halt, and eventually reverse our growth in order to preserve America’s environment, economy, natural resources, and quality of life.”

Submitting Details: 

The complete application should be emailed at NPGEssayScholarship-at-gmail.com.

Financial Aid and Award Money:

The NPG offers multiple awards for deserving candidates, ranging in value from $3,000 to $7,500.

Application Deadline:

Entries must be received by April 21, 2017. Winners will be announced online at NPG.org by June 30, 2017.

Link for More Information:

www.npg.org/scholarship/npg-2017-essay-scholarship-contest.html

The 10 Best Jobs That Don’t Require A Bachelor’s Degree

The Free Press WV

If you think you need a bachelor’s degree to have a respectable career, think again.

There are plenty of well-paying jobs with good prospects you can get that merely require some formal post-secondary training, or even just a high-school diploma.

According to US News & World Report’s 2017 Best Jobs rankings — which determines the best occupations in the US based on median salary, employment rate, growth, job prospects, stress level, and work-life balance — you could earn upwards of $70,000 with some of these jobs.

Read on to see the 10 best jobs that don’t require a bachelor’s degree in the US according to US News, with salary data and projected job growth included from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

10. Optician

Average annual salary: $36,820

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 24%

Typical education needed: High school diploma or equivalent

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 54

9. Cardiovascular Technologist

Average annual salary: $56,100

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 22%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 50

8. Occupational Therapy Aide

Average annual salary: $31,090

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 31%

Typical education needed: High school diploma or equivalent

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100):  No. 43

7. Massage Therapist

Average annual salary: $43,170

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 22%

Typical education needed: Post-secondary non-degree award

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100):  No. 42

6. Physical Therapist Assistant

Average annual salary: $55,250

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 41%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 38

5. Respiratory Therapist

Average annual salary: $59,640

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 12%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 36

4. Dental Hygienist

Average annual salary: $72,720

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 19%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 32

3. Web Developer

Average annual salary: $70,660

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 27%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100): No. 31

2. Diagnostic Medical Sonographer

Average annual salary: $70,880

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 26%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100):  No. 24

1. Occupational Therapy Assistant

Average annual salary: $58,340

Projected growth (2014 to 2024): 43%

Typical education needed: Associate’s degree

Overall 2017 Best Jobs rank (out of 100):  No. 12

Grants Available For Christian Youth

The Free Press WV
The Free Press WV

The Parkersburg Area Community Foundation and Regional Affiliates announces the availability of grants from the Proclaimers Gospel Quartet Fund for Christian Youth.

This fund provides support for Christian youth and Christian youth groups in need of financial assistance in order to attend or participate in Christian service-related events. 

Grants may be made, for example, for attendance at Christian camps or for participation in educational events or church or community service activities.

Applicants should note that persons or groups assisted through this fund generally shall only be eligible every fifth year following receipt of support.

The application period is open from February 01, 2017 through June 01, 2017.

Applications must be submitted through a church or a sponsoring non-profit organization.

Applications are available on the Foundation’s web site, www.pacfwv.com/Grants/Apply, or by contacting the Foundation by calling 304-428-4438 or emailing .

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