Last Word on meals tax, April 29

Meals tax

So, the City of Williamsburg is considering adding 2 percent to the meals tax in addition to the 5 percent already in place, plus the 6 percent state sales tax which was not mentioned in the article. This would equal 13 percent! Then there is the tip — I usually tip 20 percent — so now I'd be up to 33 percent of the cost of my actual meal in tax and tip. If I were to eat in town, and I am local, something would have to give. I guess I would have to tip based on the actual cost of the meal before tax. We just hosted our son's wedding rehearsal dinner in Prince William County, where there is no meals tax. The bill for the event was $1,700 plus 6 percent state sales tax of $102. At the proposed city of Williamsburg rate, it would have been a tax of $221.

Looking for ...

The Salvation Army would greatly appreciate donations of brown paper grocery bags, especially those with handles, for our food pantry.

Could someone tell me where I can dispose of a large, old-style, nonworking television?

I'm in need of a "medical pedicure." I'm used to having them and since I've moved here I just cannot locate one. Medicare paid for pedicures, and if anyone knows where I can get this type of specialist in the Williamsburg area, I would sincerely appreciate it.

Someone recently asked where should one donate to the Lions Club for their projects. The James City Lions Club has many projects. Our primary focus is sight, hearing and diabetes. We can always use cash donations, used eyeglasses, etc. Please contact Margene Hartsough (club president) at 250-3151 for details.

To the person who was interested in buying kitchen cabinets: I have a few brand new. Send your phone number to the Last Word, and I'll send you photos.

To the person requesting help in dealing with the IRS about prior years' refunds: I suggest you contact your local Taxpayer Advocate Service, which is an independent organization within the IRS. If you can demonstrate a hardship created by not getting these refunds and that the IRS has not responded to your requests for payment, or given you a satisfactory answer as why the delay in payment, they will help you. They are in Richmond at 804-916-3501. Or you can fill out Form 911 available on irs.gov website and fax it to 804-821-2127.

Colonial Williamsburg

I wish the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation would implement a specific fundraiser to construct the Douglas Playhouse Theater on its original site near Christiana Campbell's and Colonial Williamsburg's Capitol building. Also, I wish Colonial Williamsburg would collaborate with William and Mary to create an acting troupe that would perform at the Douglas Playhouse Theater.

I wish the Williamsburg Lodge Traditions Restaurant would have an early bird 15-20 percent off special from 4:30-5:30 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays for seniors and those in the community with Good Neighbor passes.

Roadwork ahead

I had to laugh at the recent letter about Parkway Drive being closed for the last month or so; I could have written it myself! I, too, go to Spring Arbor to visit my mom several times a week and am inconvenienced by the detour. I'm all in favor of installing sidewalks for the safety of the international students who walk there; my question is whether it's necessary for them to close both lanes? Couldn't they have flagmen with the "stop/slow" signs, which would allow traffic to pass?

Thanks to the fine people at VDOT for installing blinking yellow left-turn arrows at numerous intersections across the county. You have postponed gridlock for a few more years.

Sending wishes ...

We had been wondering what happened to our Post Office mail delivery person, Rodney, when we didn't see him for a while and our delivery was getting irregular. His service has been out of this world: early delivery times, accurate sorting, hand carrying packages to your door, always cheerful, friendly and kind. We just learned he was rear-ended on I-64 and suffered back, neck and shoulder injuries. His car is being repaired, and we look forward to his healthy return.

Dental work

In response to a question in the Last Word regarding "deep cleaning" of teeth: Yes, we had the same experience in a local shopping center's dentist office. They offer you their form of dental insurance, which comes with free cleaning; however, when you go in for the cleaning, you are informed that what you must have is an expensive deep cleaning or they won't clean your teeth at all. Also, the front office person was very pushy trying to sell these policies to their patients.

To the individual who does not want to pay for expensive and deep cleaning of her teeth: Try going to the dental school at VCU. They are amazing, very inexpensive and the work they do is thorough. The only drawback is the distance and the parking situation.

In response to the person asking if it is legal for a dental practice to dismiss a patient for not having X-rays and a "deep cleaning": It would be illegal and considered malpractice for the dentist to provide any care without proper diagnostic information. Dental X-rays are critical dental diagnostic standards of care requirements. Providing only a basic cleaning, which is considered a preventative procedure, when a deep cleaning, which is a disease treatment procedure is indicated, would also place the dentist in professional jeopardy. If affordability is the reason that you are not accepting appropriate care, you could contact Olde Towne Dental Clinic, which offers a sliding scale of payment.

Legal marijuana

Regarding the Last Word comment on legal marijuana: The person writes that it is a dangerous drug because they knew one person who abused it. Such an old, tired argument. Alcohol has not been made illegal because some abuse it. Why should marijuana be illegal because some abuse it? Any drug, be it alcohol or pot, is dangerous if abused. But just like alcohol, marijuana can be enjoyed but not abused. Stop pouring our tax dollars into trying to enforce the ridiculous prohibition on marijuana.

Health insurance

If Congress and the Senate think Obamacare is so wonderful, how come federal employees don't have Obamacare? My husband works for a private company, and our premiums have just skyrocketed, and we are paying several thousand dollars out of pocket before insurance will kick in. So, in other words, we can't afford to go to the doctor. Before, we paid maybe $20 and now, it's $250 or $300. So you need to get together, Democrats and Republicans, and get this Obamacare out of here. Don't think about your political party. Think about the good of this country.

Supreme Court

The reason that the GOP needed to "go nuclear" is because the Democrats would never have approved of a candidate unless they were a liberal. Since we now have enough bleeding hearts on the Supreme Court, we don't need any more. The Constitution needs to be upheld and interpreted as written.

Neil Gorsuch's first decision as Supreme Court Justice has left him with blood on his hands as he ignores the Fourth Amendment provision banning cruel and usual punishment by allowing Arkansas to kill a prisoner solely because the drug they want to use to slaughter eight men in 10 days expires on May 1. So much for appointing a centrist judge to the court.

Christopher Wren

I have been following the financial struggles of the Christopher Wren Association, and I sympathize with the need to remain financially viable as well as the concerns other members have about the increased cost next term. But wow, today I attended a class called "Exploring History Through Tangible Things" and it blew my socks off. Today's two-hour class, for me, was worth the cost of the entire membership — and there are two more sessions coming up! Kudos to the CWA for this excellent course.

Taxes

Once again, we are told that tax cuts being proposed will not need commensurate reductions in spending, but will "pay for themselves" through increased economic growth and the increased taxes there on. This has never worked in the past; won't work now. But we don't protest. I guess the old adage is true — we learn from history that we never learn from history.

The president's proposed tax cut is a repeat of the failed Reagan era "trickle down" economic plan. Cutting corporate taxes didn't create jobs then and won't do it now; all it will do is add to the deficit. Increased wages, which creates demand for products, which creates growth in factory output, which might create jobs is the way to stimulate the economy.

Deja vu election

The big news is that if Trump had the election today, the data is showing — even ABC reported it — Trump would win. They would have you think that the numbers are going down. That's not what's happening at all. If you held the election this week, Trump would win. Clinton would lose.

Fatal accident

So sad about the car accident in Ford's Colony. Speed has been a major issue in Ford's Colony for more than 20 years. I think the HOA needs to wake up and take speeding in Ford's Colony more seriously. Very unfortunate that it takes a death to make change. Maybe Sheriff Deeds could go into Ford's Colony and put a stop to speeding. Please slow down and be more careful.

Bird sanctuaries

I agree wholeheartedly with the writer who noted that outdoor cats are predators of birds and should not be permitted in any designated bird sanctuary. One source I located indicates that, in the U.S. alone, outdoor cats kill over 2 billion birds yearly. This is a very sad statistic. It is healthier for the cats, as well as birds, for them to be kept indoors.

New stores

Rather than encouraging the construction of a new big box store in the west end of Williamsburg, the planning commission for both counties should encourage that new German grocery store chain to remodel the empty Ukrop's on Mooretown Road, rather than building on top of the Smith Baptist Church. That would be one less empty store in town and a lot less construction.

Has anyone considered bringing an Ollie's to Williamsburg like they have in Hampton? Like in Monticello Shopping Center or other areas that have large vacant stores? I think an Ollie's would benefit Williamsburg real well. It's a nice store that has all types of different shopping concoctions for your average person, plus the prices at Ollie's are really very reasonable, too. It'd be nice if Ollie's had been considered in Williamsburg.

Thank you

Many thanks to Wedmore Place at the Williamsburg Inn for their gracious hospitality on Jamestown High School's prom night. A group of promgoers needed a place to take pictures, and Wedmore Place was a beautiful venue with a staff that was very kind and gracious to these young adults. Again, thank you.

Late-night TV

To the writer who felt "The Daily Show" with Trevor Noah was "stupid" and "idiotic," I offer the opinion that this show, originally hosted by W&M alum Jon Stewart, offers sharp and humorous political satire in an era where some levity is certainly needed.

Approval rating

Here's my assessment on the first 100 days of Melania Trump: She's doing a phenomenal job. She's doing exactly what I would do. If I had a child that was that age, I'm going to put his education first — let him finish out his year. I would go to the White House or to Mar-a-Lago and host events with foreign leaders and at the White House on the weekend. That's exactly what she's doing, and she is phenomenal. Just a wonderful representative of a First Lady.

Hungry squirrels

I have a solution for those who wish to eradicate their backyard squirrels: Learn to live with them. The local wildlife was here first, and because of humans, their habitat keeps shrinking. We are the invasive species. I consider the squirrels, deer and rabbits that live nearby as some of my favorite neighbors.

Water safety

Now that it's getting warm and the evenings longer, many of you are spending more time out on the river and creeks. I'd like to remind all boaters, you must carry (kayak and canoe) navigation lights. Jet Skis must be off the water before sunset. You are risking your life and the lives of others by not following this simple Coast Guard law.

Recommended

Thank you to the guys at Everything Audio Video. They did a fantastic job installing the TVs and audio equipment in our new home. The TV over the fireplace looks amazing, and the speakers in the room make it feel like a theater every time we watch a movie. We couldn't be more pleased with the installation; it truly looks and sounds better than expected. Our whole family highly recommends them. Give them a call at 941-8400.

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