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Archive for March, 2012

Banks helping foreclosure crisis touch HOAs

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Foreclosures and other effects of the housing slump are contributing to cascading problems.

More: continued here

NC, SC state line isn’t where folks thought it was

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

By JEFFREY COLLINS
Associated Press

LAKE WYLIE, SC (AP) — A modern survey of the state line between North Carolina and South Carolina has sent 93 property owners into another state.

The border was first drawn in the 1700s, but wasn’t surveyed again until now. The new line was drawn with computers and GPS systems, narrowing it down to the centimeter.

The old border was off by several hundred feet in some areas.

The owner of a Lake Wylie store says he will likely have to close because he is now in North Carolina, where gas is 30 cents more a gallon and he can’t sell fireworks.

For property owners, most of them around Charlotte, it will be a bureaucratic nightmare of changing schools, phone numbers, driver licenses and even the lawmakers they call to complain about the problems.

Collins can be reached at http://twitter.com/JSCollinsAP

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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U.S. Marine faces boot for anti-Obama Facebook posts

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

SAN DIEGO (AP) –- A Marine sergeant who started a Facebook group that is openly critical of President Obama and posted comments saying he will not follow the unlawful orders of the commander in chief is facing possible dismissal from the Corps.

The Marines on Wednesday told Sgt. Gary Stein — a Camp Pendleton Marine who started the Facebook page called Armed Forces Tea Party — that he is in violation of Pentagon policy barring troops from political activities.

Stein, a nine-year member of the Corps, said he started the page to encourage fellow servicemembers to exercise their free speech rights. He has also criticized U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta for his comments on Syria.

The Marine Corps said in a statement that Stein’s commanding officer ordered a preliminary inquiry on March 8 after receiving allegations that Stein posted the political statements violating the Pentagon’s directives.

“After reviewing the findings of the preliminary inquiry, the commander decided to address the allegations through administrative action,” the Corps said.

“I’m completely shocked that this is happening,” Stein said. “I’ve done nothing wrong. I’ve only stated what our oath states that I will defend the constitution and that I will not follow unlawful orders. If that’s a crime, what is America coming to?”

Stein said he planned to fight the charges. He had applied to extend his service, which was set to expire in a few months.

Stein said in addition to being discharged, he would have his rank reduced to lance corporal if he is proven to be in violation. He said he was removed from his job at the Marine Corps Recruiting Depot in San Diego on Wednesday and given a desk job with no access to computers.

According to Pentagon directives, military personnel in uniform cannot sponsor a political club; participate in any TV or radio program or group discussion that advocates for or against a political party, candidate or cause; or speak at any event promoting a political movement. Commissioned officers also may not use contemptuous words against senior officials, including the defense secretary or the president.

Stein was first cautioned by his superiors at Camp Pendleton in 2010, after he launched his Facebook page and criticized Obama’s health care overhaul. Stein volunteered to take down the page while he reviewed the rules at the request of his superiors.

He said he determined he was not in violation and relaunched the page. Last week, he said his superiors told him he could not use social media sites on government computers after he posted the message stating he would not follow the president’s unlawful orders.

Stein said his statement was part of an online debate about NATO allowing U.S. troops to be tried for the Quran burnings in Afghanistan.

In that context, he said, he was stating that he would not follow orders from the president if those orders included detaining U.S. citizens, disarming them or doing anything else that he believes would violate their constitutional rights.

Another Marine alerted his command about the statement, Stein said.

Stein said he respects the office of the president, but he does not agree with Obama’s policies. He said he is within his rights to speak up.

The Marine Corps said Stein is allowed to express his personal opinions as long as they do not give the impression he is speaking in his official capacity as a Marine.

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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ONLY ON 3: 3rd grader with big heart trying to help injured military

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A small boy, with a big heart. A third grader has organized a walk-a-thon to help raise money for injured troops. His mom says altruism is nothing new for this New Hanover County student.

“I really wanna help raise money for them, so they could feel better,” Jake Sullivan said.

Nine-year old Jake is more than a third grader at Castle Hayne Elementary School. He’s also the mastermind of an upcoming walk-a-thon. It’s something he learned about while reading a book.

“He was asking what that was about and decided he wanted to do one,” Jake’s mom Erin said.

Jake’s uncle is a retired Marine. The family tie and knowing how close we live to Camp Lejeune helped him decide who would benefit.

“I thought it would be a good idea, because a lot of Army, Marines have been wounded in battle,” Jake said. “Not just like 10 or 20, but millions of them, and I’m going to fill millions of hurts by helping the millions of people from the Semper Fi Fund.”

Erin Sullivan is proud of her son. He’s bringing attention and awareness to the Semper Fi Fund, which helps critically injured service members and their families, and he’s learning something valuable.

“This has been a great lesson, a great experience for my son not just to raise money for somebody else, but to do the project management piece and learn how to put it together,” Erin said.

Jake hopes to raise $1,000, but no matter the dollar amount he receives, the intent is the same.

“He’s done other things on a smaller level for people. It’s kinda in his nature to be generous, and he’s left one or two people a little choked up at his generosity,” Erin said.

The walk-a-thon will help kick off the Spring Fling Saturday at 2 p.m. at Castle Hayne Elementary.

More: continued here

ONLY ON 3: 3rd grader with big heard trying to help injured military

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — A small boy, with a big heart. A third grader has organized a walk-a-thon to help raise money for injured troops. His mom says altruism is nothing new for this New Hanover County student.

“I really wanna help raise money for them, so they could feel better,” Jake Sullivan said.

Nine-year old Jake is more than a third grader at Castle Hayne Elementary School. He’s also the mastermind of an upcoming walk-a-thon. It’s something he learned about while reading a book.

“He was asking what that was about and decided he wanted to do one,” Jake’s mom Erin said.

Jake’s uncle is a retired Marine. The family tie and knowing how close we live to Camp Lejeune helped him decide who would benefit.

“I thought it would be a good idea, because a lot of Army, Marines have been wounded in battle,” Jake said. “Not just like 10 or 20, but millions of them, and I’m going to fill millions of hurts by helping the millions of people from the Semper Fi Fund.”

Erin Sullivan is proud of her son. He’s bringing attention and awareness to the Semper Fi Fund, which helps critically injured service members and their families, and he’s learning something valuable.

“This has been a great lesson, a great experience for my son not just to raise money for somebody else, but to do the project management piece and learn how to put it together,” Erin said.

Jake hopes to raise $1,000, but no matter the dollar amount he receives, the intent is the same.

“He’s done other things on a smaller level for people. It’s kinda in his nature to be generous, and he’s left one or two people a little choked up at his generosity,” Erin said.

The walk-a-thon will help kick off the Spring Fling Saturday at 2 p.m. at Castle Hayne Elementary.

More: continued here

 

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