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Darts & Laurels

Laurel: Congratulations to the Johnson Central High School Football team for winning the 4A championship! Major kudos go out to Johnson County School Board President Bob Hutchison who has volunteered to purchase championship rings for the team.

Dart: Wild swings in temperature and weather are kicking off cold and flu season with a vengeance. To prevent you and your loved ones from bringing home the crud, make sure to wash hands frequently.

Laurel: The Paintsville Christmas in the City celebration was a big hit, bringing the spirit of the season to residents and visitors alike. Well done Paintsville Tourism!

Dart: More inconvenience as Ky. Rt. 40 shuts down overnight on Tuesday night. Alternate routes involve heading through Thealka or Van Lear adding an additional 20-30 minutes if you are traveling between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. But stay strong! Construction should be done by the end of the month.

Laurel: The Historic SIPP Theater with a steady stream of favorite classic movies is drawing in business at a steady rate. The JCHS players production of “Elf: The Musical” promises to bring in belly laughs as well.

Guest Editorial

Don’t get conned with ‘Seasonal Employment’ scamsDon’t get conned with ‘Seasonal Employment’ scams

Attorney General Beshear is warning Kentuckians to be wary of seasonal employment scams targeting those looking to make some extra cash for the holidays.
The scam often appears as an online advertisement seeking a mystery shopper, package or shipping position or similar employment where Kentuckians can work from home and receive immediate payment.
Here is how the scam often plays out:
Once “hired” the “new employee” is mailed a check by a scammer and instructed to deposit it into his or her bank account. The new employee is then instructed to quickly send a large amount of money to the scammer or third-party to cover cost of equipment, training materials or health insurance.
After the employee sends the money, communication immediately stops with the scammer and the deposited check inevitably proves to be counterfeit.
The victim is left without seasonal employment and may be held accountable for the funds drawn and other charges by a bank for the deposited check.
“Unfortunately scammers look to thrive this time of year by taking advantage of the holiday season,” Attorney General Beshear said. “There are many legitimate seasonal employment opportunities, but Kentuckians must remain vigilant when seeking online job offers and watch for red flags associated with scams.”
Beshear said red flags often associated with job scams include:
• Paid in advance. 
If you receive a check before doing any work, you are likely being targeted by scammers.

• Hired without an interview. 
Be suspicious if you receive a job offer without completing an in-person or telephone interview. Be very concerned if the “human resources rep” uses a Yahoo, Gmail or Hotmail email address rather than a corporate email account. Scammers often ask to communicate using instant or text messaging.

• Offered a high salary with few job duty details.
Jobs that sound too good to be true likely are. Watch for job postings that promise a high salary to work from home and require little experience or provide few job duty specifics. 

• Immediately asked to provide personal or financial information.
Jobseekers are often asked to provide social security numbers and other personal and financial information as part of the hiring process. Take extra time to verify a company, the job posting and application before providing sensitive data.
One of Beshear’s top priorities is to protect Kentucky consumers, especially senior citizens from scams, abuse and exploitation.
To report a scam contact the Attorney General’s Office at 888-432-9257 and file a complaint online.
Kentuckians are urged to stay up to date on new and trending scams by signing up for Scam Alerts. To enroll text the words KYOAG Scam to GOV311 (468311), or enroll online at and select text message or email alert.

Darts & Laurels

Laurel: The spirit of giving abounds! Churches, schools and organizations are coming together to ensure that our poorest citizens are not forgotten this holiday season. Rather than throwing money at the problem, volunteer and become a deeper part of our community.

Dart: The number of motorized scooters and wheelchairs skittering around in the twilight hours around Paintsville is leading to an increased number of close calls as these individuals obey neither the laws of the road or stick to the sidewalks.

Laurel: Congratulations Paintsville High School Football Team for a great season and their hard work against Hazard in the semi-final championship. Johnson Central charges to the state Championship on Sunday. Good luck!

Dart: When Paintsville played Hazard on Friday night, Hazard’s rules prevented broadcasting of the game leaving fans back home in the dark.

Laurel: The Christmas season is ‘officially’ off to a great start. Streets are decorated, windows shining with holiday displays and homes are starting to glitter in their winter finery. We can’t wait to see what everything looks like lit up!

Guest Editorial

‘The country is doomed. The country is doomed’By Mike Caldwell

The Winchester Sun

Can you picture the popular folk tale about Chicken Little with the added wrinkle of modern social media?
It doesn’t take much imagination as all you have to do is browse your Facebook or Twitter feed to get a feeling of what that would be like.
Everyone remembers the fictional character from the old folk tales that spawned a popular children’s movie, right? He was so afraid the sky was falling at every turn that his hysterical panic caused all kinds of problems for he and his friends.
That is what the 2016 presidential election has done to many Americans — Republicans and Democrats alike.
Trump supporters were convinced the world would end if the “rigged” system allowed Hillary Clinton to win the presidency. Clinton’s faithful and others are up in arms about how the country is doomed when the Donald takes charge.
Both sides are wrong.
America is going to be OK.
Why am I so confident? I have faith in our democracy, faith in the resilience of our country and faith in the American spirit.
We are far from perfect but we are still the greatest country in the world.
America has survived a revolution, a civil war, two world wars, the Great Depression, terrorism and so much more.
The country has also come out on top when it comes to disco music, 1980s fashion, reality TV and the Canadian incursion Justin Bieber. That has to count for something.
Sure, this was a very acrimonious election cycle, maybe even the worst in our history. But, again, it’s going to be OK.
All those protesting the election outcome, calling for the dissolution of the Electoral College or saying they are ready to pack their bags for Canada are missing the point.
This is America. The people spoke. Now we have an obligation to give Trump and all the other elected officials a chance.
So some people don’t like the results. Guess what? We will all be able to start making changes the next time we enter the voting booth.
That’s what America is all about and, no matter what anyone says, the sky won’t fall between now and then.

Nov 18, 2016, 07:39

Darts & Laurels

Laurel: Kudos to all the firefighters throughout Johnson County working to ensure that the wildfire epidemic in eastern Kentucky hasn’t broken out here. Prompt response to reported fires ensure that people and property remain safe in extraordinary dry conditions.

Dart: The Big Sandy Regional Jail Board missed an opportunity to get $55,00 of fees paid to the jail when members declined to show up for a scheduled special meeting on Monday, Nov. 7. Now any potential to collect the fees owed by Martin County toward operating expenses for the jail will be tied up in court for potentially months or even years.

Laurel: Congratulations to Bill Mike Runyon, new mayor of the city of Paintsville. Runyon was selected to take the place of former mayor Robert Porter during the city council meeting on Monday night.

Dart: Harsh economic times make it difficult for families to face the holiday season. Food Pantries are doing brisk business this year as Thanksgiving approaches and need help gathering Thanksgiving supplies. If you or a business wishes to donate, contact 12 Baskets Food Pantry at (606) 264-0299.

Laurel: The Paintsville High School senior class met its goal for having all seniors apply for college by Oct. 15 for the fifth straight year. Way to go!

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