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VA offers dental insurance program

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 — VA has partnered with Delta Dental and MetLife to allow eligible veterans, plus family members receiving care under the Civilian Health and Medical Program, to purchase affordable dental insurance. More than 8 million veterans who are enrolled in VA health care can choose to purchase one of the offered dental plans.This three-year pilot program has been designed for veterans with no dental coverage, or those eligible for VA dental care who would like to purchase additional coverage.Participation will not affect entitlement to VA dental services and treatment.

There are no eligibility limitations based on service-connected disability rating or enrollment priority assignment.People interested in participating may complete an application online through either Delta Dental at deltadentalvadip.org, or MetLife at metlife.com/vadip.Coverage for this new dental insurance began Jan. 1. Also eligible for the new benefits are nearly 400,000 spouses and dependent children who are reimbursed for most medical expenses under VA’s civilian health program.Generally, civilian health participants are spouses, survivors or dependent children of veterans officially rated as “permanently and totally” disabled by a service-connected condition.

Land of the free, home of the brave

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 — I had the honor of spending some time recently with a man born and raised in Montgomery, Ala., during the escalation of the civil rights movement in the South.

  Charlie Hardy, who is now 73, grew up in an era when “every facet of life was segregated.” From schools to drinking fountains to restaurants, segregation was a fact of everyday life.

  This remained true, especially down south, even after the 1954 Supreme Court ruling in Brown vs. Board of Education. That unanimous decision stated “separate educational facilities are inherently unequal,” paving the way for desegregation in all aspects of life.

Change is coming to our political landscape

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 — They say nothing is certain in life except death and taxes. Somebody needs to add change to that list, especially when it comes to the political landscape here in Susanville and Lassen County.

A number of elected officials have decided they will not seek elective office in the city and the county, making room for new candidates with new ideas. To many of our neighbors, that’s a good thing.

Voters in the city of Susanville will elect at least one new member to the city council. Councilmember Cheryl McDonald has decided not to seek re-election. Residents have an opportunity to select two councilmembers from seven candidates seeking office, including incumbent Mayor Rod De Boer. Two councilmembers will be elected in the June Primary Election and seated before July 1.

It’s already time to draw up plans for a vegetable garden

Tuesday, March 11, 2014 — A container on my kitchen windowsill is filled with tomato plant seedlings. One morning a few tiny green specks could be seen atop the soil and a few days later a multitude of plants had sprouted.

My husband, Terry, gets the credit. He is determined to have a bountiful garden this summer. Already we are beginning to create a layout for planting. One garden box will be devoted to tomatoes. We will create a greenhouse affect with PVC pipe arched across the box and covered with clear plastic, patterned after a covered wagon. It is a design we saw used at the community garden planted at the One Stop Center in Westwood.

Many lessons were learned last summer when we filled two planter boxes with tomatoes, peppers, zucchini, lettuce, spinach and lemon cucumbers. Also, along our fence we planted raspberries.

We want to print your local news, photos

Tuesday, March 11, 2014 — If I may be so bold as to speak for my fellow workers in the newsroom here at the Lassen County Times, each week we dedicate ourselves to serving you, our readers. And now I want to take the opportunity to ask you to help us better serve our readers and our community.

Our work week seems to start slowly on Monday, and then it accelerates to a whirlwind as the week gets older on Thursday (our deadline day). And that whirlwind turns into a tornado on Friday when we actually put the paper together. We’re used to those deadlines and weekly pressures, but apparently some members of our community are not.

Generally our deadline for all things news (except when we have a short deadline due to a holiday or some other special event) is noon on Thursday. If some special event is on your group’s or organization’s horizon, get the information to us and we’ll help you get the word out. That’s what we do.


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