April 25, 2014

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Columns
Tenn. calendar worth owning PDF Print E-mail
Written by Bob Baird   
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:42 PM

I was born and raised in LaFollette in Campbell County Tenn. This is in the northeast section of the state, 50 miles north of Knoxville.

After my hitch in the Army, I left for Hamilton County Ohio in July 1953 never to return except for short visits with relatives.

During my early years in Tennessee, Haskel “Hack” Ayers was born about 1936. When Hack was 7, his father, John, was killed by cops during a whiskey raid.

In addition to farming, running a restaurant motel and other ventures, John Ayers was in the whiskey business in a dry county.

Hack came to Cincinnati for a short time, but returned home to Tennessee. I have no regrets but when I am asked if I am rich like the old businessman I reply I’m comfortable.

Good old days
If Hack was asked the same question, he would no doubt reply that he was the richest man in Campbell County Tennessee.

My reason for writing this is because a friend, Pat Goins, told me about a calendar with old photos that Hack’s, Ayers Auction & Real Estate, had.

I asked Pat to send me one.She asked Hack, who remembered Mildred and me, and he also sent me many older calendars, articles etc. from the good old days.

My father-in-law, Frank Archer, helped Hack in his auction business when he returned to Tennessee.

Archer was a great and intelligent man. Ayers has been involved in Tennessee politics and other community causes.

If you are going to the Norris Lake area this summer, Hack owns a couple of first class motels near Interstate 75.

I plan on a last visit to my birthplace with some of my grandchildren this summer. I plan on staying at Hack’s Hampton Inn near Caryville at exit 134.

If you visit my hometown area be sure to look up Hack. He is downhome, likable and never met a stranger.

I have never heard of anything bad or dishonest in his dealings with people.

How many successful people in business can you say that about?

Bill Baird is a Whitewater Township resident who writes a weekly column about old movies and Hollywood trivia.

 
Service ain’t free; it just ain’t free PDF Print E-mail
Written by Joe Awad   
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:39 PM

On an unusually sultry day last October, I dragged my dog-tired carcass into the Harrison fire department to interview Chief Rob Hursong.

I immediately sat down, breathing heavily, heart beating like a bird’s, sweating profusely. He gave me a bottled water, and looked at me inquisitively. Before I knew it, he and the lads slapped a heart monitor on me. I was sweating so vigorously the pads kept sliding off.

The next thing I knew, I was in the back of an ambulance headed to Good Sam. The issue was narrowed down to my intolerance of a medication that insidiously subdued me. Translation: I felt like shit.

As we entered the ER, I remember a nurse saying something like the Harrison Life Squad “is the best.”

Here we are seven months later, and the Harrison squad, fire department and police are struggling to remain the best. Harrison is a fortunate community with a public safety network second to none.

It’s a true blessing that every squad run contains two first-responder paramedics, but that quality of service doesn’t stand a chance to continue if Harrison voters do not approve the safety service tax levy that will make the ballot in November or perhaps on a special election this summer.

A committee has been formed between city leaders and union members to formulate a plan and drive home the necessity to pass the levy. If it fails, make no mistake, services will suffer.

Joe Awad is editor of The Harrison Press.

 
Dear Mr. Bently: take this advice to heart PDF Print E-mail
Written by Jim Robertson   
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:38 PM

Dear Mr. Bently:

You have obviously had a problem with the permitting process in Harrison.

Despite your pleas to the contrary, it does exist to serve the public by channeling various projects in a safe and pleasing aesthetic.

True, it is your property and within reason you have the right to do anything with it you want with one big caveat;

You can’t infringe on the rights of those occupying the property around you.

Most building codes are there to insure that projects above a certain size are constructed properly with an eye toward safety.

If you were allowed to put up any kind of a lean-to that your heart desired, it would probably be only a matter of time before other city employees would be extricating you from the wreckage.

In all application and permitting processes, a certain amount of time is going to pass.

You can’t jump out of bed on a Saturday morning and decide, I’m going to build a deck today.

Lack of planning on your part does not create an emergency on our part.

As to putting the blast on the politicians, it is important for you and other like-minded individuals to understand that most of us “politicians” aren’t here for the money or the power.

In small cities such as Harrison, many civic-minded individuals step forward to serve their fellow citizens.

But it gets harder and harder to find folks willing to step up.

Witness the last council election: four running for four seats.

If you feel that strongly that you are being wronged by the current crop, I look forward to seeing your name on the ballot in the future.  But be careful of what you wish for.

Many a newly elected official has come along during my tenure and they all have an idea, that is until they get on the other side of the table and find out that what they felt was a good notion to their surprise had been thought of by former seat holders and the flaws in those ideas exposed.

As to “thinking out of the box,” I am going to take issue with your quick fix on the recycling setup in effect.

You aren’t the first individual to suggest another dumpster or having them emptied more times per week, which you would have known had you chosen to ask somebody involved rather than just spewing your bile in print.

For the record, I take great pride in trying to maintain a recycling drop off site to supplement the curbside residential efforts.

I too get frustrated when I have individuals finding the dumpsters full, casually tossing their crap on the ground.  I have gone after some of the offenders if we can identify the culprits.

As to adding a dumpster or more pickups, that costs money.  An additional pickup per week would raise costs by 50 percent.  Another dumpster, 25 percent.

We are fast getting to the point where the cost effective move would be to discontinue the service.

We shouldn’t have to do that if everyone would realize that recycling properly takes some effort.

It isn’t just loading up on Sunday night and chucking the stuff on the ground.

Recycle the proper items.  Styrofoam ain’t one of them.  Break down your cardboard boxes. Saves room.  Thinking outside the box would be to create a black hole inside the dumpster so that no matter how much stuff you shove into it, it never gets full.

Jim Robertson is a longtime Harrison resident, a member of Harrison City Council, and a weekly columnist for The Harrison Press.

 
Harrison resident running as write-in for House PDF Print E-mail
Written by Tammy Simendinger   
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:35 PM

My dad was a Cincinnati police officer and my mother was a homemaker. I had parents who instilled in me solid family values and a strong work ethic. I have worked full time since I was 16.

I know that Americans, especially those who live in our area, want to work for a living and take pride in providing for their families.

I believe everyone should have that opportunity. My Christian beliefs tell me that we need to help those who are less fortunate and unable to help themselves.

I also believe that those who abuse the system should be punished. We must work together to correct the flaws in the entitlement system, rather than allow the differences between the political parties to create legislative gridlock.

The current Republican-controlled administration in Columbus removed the Local Government Fund and Inheritance Tax.

Harrison, Whitewater Township, Crosby Township, Harrison Township, Cleves, and Miamitown, and others were all faced with a shortfall. A few of these localities are now considering tax levies, which means we could all be paying an additional tax.

We need to have our original tax dollars returned back into our community, instead of placing additional levies on us.

I also believe in investing toward our future. Having access to education and safe classrooms must be a priority for our kids.

The average age of a school building in the Southwest School District is 55 years old. But most people do not want to pass another tax levy. What is the Ohio House of Representatives doing for us?

When was the last time you saw our representative here?  When was the last time someone from the Harrison area represented us in Columbus?

Harrison has never had someone from the Harrison area representing the 29th District in the State House.

I am absolutely tired of our elected officials, like Jim Robertson, promoting division and discord with untruths about the Democratic Party.

As a hardworking, tax-paying citizen, I believe we need to stop the finger-pointing and start working together to fix the problems in our community.

This is our community, and the US Constitution says, “We the People,” therefore I am announcing my candidacy for the 29th District of the Ohio House of Representatives.

Do you want government that works together and someone representing our community? Then I ask you to write in my name, Tammy Simendinger, on the Democratic ballot in the Tuesday, May 6, Ohio Primary.

Let’s make a change in Columbus and have a representative who truly represents us.

I am Tammy Simendinger and I ask for your write-in vote in May, and for your vote on the ballot in November.

Tammy Simendinger is a Harrison resident.

 
75 bucks snatched from her hand PDF Print E-mail
Written by Bob Hyle   
Tuesday, April 22, 2014 1:34 PM

It’s always enjoyable to talk about the big wins or accomplishments we go through in life. But life sometimes gives you a punch in the gut. This is one such story.

In poker they call them “bad beats.” That’s when the person you are playing cards against does something that defies description, or is just plain lucky, and beats you.

In my business, a good story can be priceless, but my wife doesn’t deal in stories. Her currency is cold hard cash. Besides, I’m stealing her story anyway.

Last week, we made our pilgrimage to the spring meet at Keeneland and other than a basketball gym, there aren’t many other places that I would rather be.

It was the fifth race. My wife favors the exacta box in betting. She will take three horses and if any two of them finish in first and second place, she wins. She cheered as the horses came down the stretch and was excited when two of her horses came across the finish line in first and second place.

She was even more excited when I told her the payoff would probably be around $75.

The unofficial winners were posted, but then another light on the tote board lit up: Inquiry.

That’s a bad word for the most part. It usually involves one of the horse cutting in front of another horse, causing the second horse to lose its stride and making it nearly impossible to win.

That was the case here. In about the time it takes an NFL referee to review the tape, which is to say an eternity, the PA announcer finally told the crowd that the offending horse, the horse my wife needed to stay in second place, was being dropped from second place to seventh.

They showed the replay and it was probably the right call, but my wife wasn’t interested in what other professional sports call “getting the call right.”

The amazing thing is that the referees of horse racing, the stewards, have been doing this for decades, long before anyone ever thought up the term “after further review.”

Overturning a result doesn’t happen often. I can’t recall ever being at a race when it has happened until last week.

Such a rarity didn’t make my wife feel any better. She wanted the $75 in her pocket. In her mind, holding a winning $75 exacta ticket is infinitely better than a “bad beat” story. Normally I would agree with her, but at least her tale was good for something.


Bob Hyle covers sports and writes a weekly column for The Harrison Press. He lives in Bright.

 
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