Delegate Larry Williams and former Delegate Stan Shaver, both D-Preston, obtained two grants totaling $33,000 earlier in the year, followed up with a $10,000 grant awarded Sept. 19, requested by Sen. Dave Sypolt, R-Preston.
Similarly, the Milton Pumpkin Festival has a lot of supporters in the Legislature, picking up a $10,000 grant requested by Sen. Robert Plymale, D-Wayne, and three separate $5,000 grants, all awarded Aug. 22, from Delegates Kevin Craig and Jim Morgan both D-Cabell, and Carol Miller, R-Cabell.
(As we can see, the Legislature is very bipartisan when it comes to asking for grant money.)
Among the more unusual grants is $2,000 for a West Virginia Firefighters calendar, requested by Delegates Doug Reynolds and Dale Stephens, both D-Cabell, and Kelli Sobonya, R-Cabell; $5,000 for office furnishings for the West Virginia Poultry Association headquarters, requested by Sypolt, and $4,000 for stun guns for the Weirton Police Department, requested by Delegate Ronnie Jones, D-Hancock.
Finally, grate minds think alike? Rep. Jack Kingston, R-Ga., made headlines last week for a speech he gave in his southeastern Georgia district calling for eliminating free school lunches for low-income children.
He was quoted in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution as telling the audience, "One of the things I've talked to the Secretary of Agriculture about [is], why don't you, you know, have the kids pay a dime, pay a nickel to instill in them that there is, in fact, no such thing as a free lunch - or maybe sweep the floor in the cafeteria."
Where have we heard a lawmaker advocate for making poor children work for their free school lunches? That's right, on the House floor this past spring, when Delegate Ray Canterbury, R-Greenbrier, opined that giving free meals to poor children via the "Feed to Achieve Act" (SB663) would ruin the children's work ethic:
"I think it would be a good idea if perhaps we had the kids work for their lunches: trash to be taken out, hallways to be swept, lawns to be mowed, make them earn it," Canterbury said in an April 12 floor speech, one that drew an impassioned rebuke from Delegate Meshea Poore, D-Kanawha, who said she was astonished anyone would suggest making young children labor for their meals.
Sorry to close out with a "bah humbug" item, but here's wishing everyone a Merry Christmas.Reach Phil Kabler at ph...@wvgazette.com or 304-348-1220.