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Q&A: Retired hurricane names, new textbook sales rule, military dog tags, how to get a green card

Carol first storm name retired

How many hurricane names have been retired, starting when? While Katrina is an obvious example, what are the names and the years? And shouldn't the name Bonnie be retired from the list since we had a major, destructive hurricane by that name already?

There are 73 retired hurricane names for the Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea and Gulf of Mexico. A number of destructive storms are not included because they occurred before the hurricane naming convention was established in 1950, according to the National Hurricane Center.

The first retired names were Carol and Hazel, in 1954. The year with the most retired names is 2005, with Dennis, Katrina, Rita, Stan and Wilma. The most recent year for retired names is 2008, when Gustav, Ike and Paloma were retired. The full list can be found at

Hurricane Bonnie made landfall on Aug. 26, 1998, in southern North Carolina near Cape Fear. It was a major hurricane, Category 3, but didn't inflict enough damage to be retired. So we had another Bonnie (tropical storm) in July.

When a name is retired, the World Meteorological Organization selects its replacement.

An effort to cut textbook costs

Can you tell me about the new law requiring colleges to reveal the ISBNs of college texts?

The Higher Education Opportunity Act, which Congress passed in 2008, requires publishers to disclose textbook prices and identification numbers, among other information, when students register for courses. The textbook provisions took effect July 1. The guidelines in the act seek to lower textbook costs.

Info on military dog tags

I was in the Air Force Reserves about 40 years ago, and my dog tags have my religion imprinted on them. Does the military still imprint religions on dog tags?

All branches of the U.S. military include religion as a category on dog, or ID, tags. The branches follow this basic template: full name, Social Security number, branch of service, blood type and religion.

Many ways to get green card

How do you obtain a green card and how does one become eligible to stay in the U.S.?

According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services website ( there are numerous ways to obtain a green card, but the most common are when a family member makes a petition, getting a job offer or through employment, and by obtaining refugee or asylum status.

According to the site, if you have a green card, it must be in your possession at all times. It notes that green cards are valid for 10 years, or two years in the case of a conditional resident, and must be renewed before the card expires.

Q&A: Retired hurricane names, new textbook sales rule, military dog tags, how to get a green card 08/22/10 [Last modified: Sunday, August 22, 2010 4:30am]
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