Cleanup of Meth-Lab Homes Becomes a Growing Cottage Industry

  By Adrian Sainz – MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A tall man and a slender woman wiggled into their white hazardous materials suits, putting on protective masks and gloves before venturing into the dark, two-story home where police say a methamphetamine lab recently exploded. Gary Siebenschuh and a helper (pictured above) used a yellow photo ionization detector…

Your Will: The Overlooked Bucket-list Item

Of the trendy terms to come around in the past decade, “bucket list” remains among the most useful, says retirement planning expert Jeff Gorton. “As a neologism, I hope it endures because it reminds us of how precious our time is – and that it’s important to plan wisely,” says Gorton, a veteran Certified Public…

Senate Finance Staff Discussion Draft: Energy Tax Incentives

Last week saw the release of yet another discussion draft from the staff of the Senate Finance Committee concerning tax reform. Following draft proposals concerning depreciation/accounting and other business expenses (such as advertising), the most recent draft proposes changes to the tax code’s rules concerning energy production and energy-efficient improvements. Under the draft proposal, most…

Land Value Tax: An Alternative to the Property Tax

An alternative to the local property tax, the land value tax offers certain benefits over the economically inefficient property tax. However, its novelty and legal and political challenges continue to make it an elusive option at this time. According to numerous polls, the most hated tax is the local property tax. Economists Marika Cabral and…

Mortgage Changes to Know in 2014

The New Year is almost here, and with it comes a bevy of legal and regulatory changes, especially for the mortgage industry. To help potential homebuyers understand how the changes will affect their mortgage processes, Don Frommeyer, CRMS, President of NAMB (The Association of Mortgage Professionals), outlines some of the regulations set to start in…

Enchant a Goblin Priest

  Think we can all agree these are pretty exciting times. Matter of fact, might be more exciting than we had any inkling. Recent revelations indicate we’ve all become inadvertent assets in governmental spy operations. You may have thought the NSA was everywhere, but you didn’t know the half of it. And no, there shouldn’t…

How to make high-speed rail work in California

Two court decisions have blocked the California High-Speed Rail Authority from issuing more than $8 billion in bonds and from using bond funds on construction until it fixes its funding plan. Now what? The authority says it will move forward using federal funds. But as one of the attorneys who successfully challenged the project, I…

Since 2009, 11 Million Americans Out of Job Market

Real Unemployment 14.6 Percent The Bureau of Labor Statistics’ November employment report was its usual misleading statistical good news mish-mash that, when slapped together, came out as what the mainstream media called the most “encouraging” in months. Officially, the economy added 203,000 jobs and the unemployment rate dropped to 7 percent, its lowest level in…