Congress has passed, and the president has signed into law, the VOW To Hire Hero’s Act of 2011. Included in the law is the Veterans Retraining Assistance Program (VRAP) for unemployed veterans. This new program is set to roll out on July 1st, 2012 and will provide retraining for the veterans hit hardest with the current economic conditions.

The VRAP is offering 12 months of training assistance to unemployed veterans and limited to 45,000 participants during fiscal year 2012 and to 54,000 participants from October 1, 2012 through March 31, 2014. Participants may receive up to 12 months of assistance at the full time payment rate under the Montgomery GI Bill – active duty program.

Participants must be enrolled in a VA approved program of education offered by a community college or technical school. To see the rules, regulations and guidelines for this Act, please go to the US Department of Veterans Affairs or the Department of Labor.

For more than 50 years the C.A.R.O.L. program, Christmas Activities Relief Organization Limited, has helped families in our community keep the holiday spirit alive by assisting those less fortunate during the holidays.

This year, our family here at Creekside Mortgage Inc, decided we wanted to help them do what they do best. In conjunction with our vendors, employees, the American Legion Post #27 and other companies we cooperate with, Creekside Mortgage was able to collect over $300 in toys and gift cards to help the CAROL program continue their amazing act of kindness.

We hope that our efforts are able to assist the Camas Fire Department to bring more attention to their cause so that this program can continue to grow and give the members of our community a little stress relief during this holiday season.

Southwest Airlines Co. announced today that they ordered 208 new Boeing 737 aircraft with a value of nearly $19 billion. The airline, which operates an all-Boeing fleet, placed a firm order for 150 of the 737 Max, and 58 of the next-generation 737s.

Last month, Boeing said Indonesia's Lion Air committed, but hasn’t finalized, a deal to buy 230 Boeing 737s. Lion Air also has options for 150 more planes, bringing the deal's total potential value to $35 billion. Emirates Airlines also ordered $18 billion worth of 777s in November.

Both deals came shortly after Boeing finally began delivering its two newest planes, the next-generation 787 and the latest version of the iconic 747. Boeing produces about one 737 every day from its plant in Renton, Wash. It is raising that amount to 42 per month by 2014.

Boeing says Southwest is the first customer to finalize an order for the 737 Max. Including the order talked about above. Boeing now has orders or commitments from 13 customers for more than 900 of the new model.

Boeing shares rose 66 cents to $71.56 in premarket trading on the news of the new orders.

Clark County Veterans Court Board , is holding a Christmas Concert for veterans December 8th from 5:00 PM to 7:30PM. Doors open at 4:30 at the Dragonfly Café on 1300 W Franklin Street in Vancouver, WA.

Tickets are available online at Ricky Lee Jackson and Grammy Award winner Doug Smith.

There will also be special performances by Ragtime, Old Time Fiddlers, Fort Vancouver Pipe Band, Nikki Hubert with the Living Free Band, Siarra Edmundson and Jesse Wade as Sinatra. Come join us for the festivities and help raise money for the Clark County Washington Veteran's Court Board.