Letters to the Editor for Oct. 5
- The Times - Opinion
Vote 'yes' for Sherwood schools
We have to pass that school bond issue. All of our schools are maxed out on space. Three of the five have more students than they were designed to hold. The high school kids can't even all sit down at lunch because there is no room and not enough chairs. Class sizes have gone from 25, which is bad enough, to 35 or more. There is no way a teacher can be at his or her most effective with a class of 35 kids. It cannot be done.
This bond is not asking for any extras - not even the athletic stadium which we so desperately need - it is simply asking for the money that is necessary to build and staff the schools we need in order to provide our kids with a good education.
I moved here in 1995. The schools were Hopkins, Sherwood Middle School and Sherwood High School. The population was around 5,000 people. That has tripled, and still people are moving to Sherwood, and almost all of the newcomers are young families with young children. Go to any program at any of the three elementary schools, and you will see that the place is crawling with lots and lots and lots of future Bowmen, many yet unborn.
Parents, if you want those future Bowmen of yours to be able to breathe in their class-rooms, we simply must build more schools, hire more teachers, and purchase more supplies. You moved here because our schools are the best in the state. If you want them to stay that way, vote yes for the bond issue. Please.
Non-parents, and those of you who routinely vote no on every single spending issue (and I'm with you on 99 percent of them, believe me) - get real. We cannot educate these kids without schools and teachers. If we cannot educate them, they'll have no future, and then we'll be supporting them for years to come. Take the cheaper way out. Vote yes.
New city will cost more, but is worth it
Signs are up on Bull Mountain screaming that if we form a new city, it's going to cost us a little more. Duh.
Everybody knows that we can't reverse the problems of the area by rubbing a magic lamp and wishing for things to improve. We're going to have to spend some money, and if we aren't willing, then we can look forward to seeing more over-development, continued deforestation, worsening traffic problems and still no parks for our kids. And if we try to save a dollar and do nothing? Then we'll just get annexed to Tigard and end up paying Tigard's additional taxes anyhow.
The only way to save what's left of Bull Mountain is to pay a little more to somebody who actually cares about Bull Mountain.
Would we rather spend a little extra to form a new city where Bull Mountain's priorities really matter, or pay that same money to the city of Tigard, that has helped to create many of our existing problems?
It's an easy choice for all of us. I'll gladly pay a little more to form a new city and to help save our Bull Mountain. Please join me and vote 'yes' for a new Bull Mountain.
Unincorporated Bull Mtn.
Rep. Galizio truly represents HD 35
As a constituent in House District 35, I am glad to see The Times endorsement of Rep. Larry Galizio.
He has truly represented the majority views of the citizens living in the Tigard/King City area. He has continually supported proposals to adequately fund schools and not proposals that look good (51 percent of the state budget) but in reality are less money than the schools were receiving. He has taken the time to visit schools in the area to get a first hand look at what is going on with Oregon's children, and he has taken the time to listen and follow up with the concerns of the voters in HD 35.
As a freshman legislator, he worked hard to work on both sides of the aisle to try and get legislation that would help the citizens of Oregon.
I saw Rep. Galizio grow into his position as a state representative and earn the respect of his peers and the voters. He will continue to do good things for the people in Tigard.
New Bull Mt. city is public safety issue
The recent shooting incident in Tigard demonstrates the critical issues involved in public safety. Citizens need quality dedicated police officers for the life and death job. There needs to be an adequate number of officers properly trained on duty at all times.
A new Bull Mountain city concerns me on this public safety issue. The new city proposes a 30-50 percent reduction in police staffing. We are not going to vote to reduce police protection for our family and neighbors.
We are voting 'no' on 34-129.
LORI and KENT SOLDWEDEL
Unincorporated Bull Mtn.
Article conveyed just one side of shooting
In responding to the article by Barbara Sherman in last week's Times regarding the shooting of Luke Glenn, I can only conclude she was trying to convey one side and only one side.
In trying to defend the Tigard police department, as well as the Washington County Sheriff's department, Alan Orr, Tigard's assistant police chief, was cited by Sherman a number of times. Some of my favorites were:
'In this case, reasoning with Glenn was out of the question, no matter who was there. 'There are cases where you could have a triple-Ph.D. in psychiatry, and you're not going to get through to an individual.'' Or later, 'You can reason with people to a certain point… The behavior they saw dictated what they had to do.' And finally, 'Glenn dictated the outcome of the situation.'
So, jumping out of your squad cars and immediately screaming while pointing your handgun at a confused, drunk, scared teenager is now considered 'reasoning' is it?
Luke 'dictated' what they had to do? How about a little common sense by the adult officers who outnumbered him? Or maybe, different training… you think? And now that my blood is really boiling, how about the concept of shooting the individual below the waist? I know, I know, they are 'trained to shoot to kill.'
In the words of an ancient Chinese philosopher, 'Avoid rather than check. Check rather than hurt. Hurt rather than maim. Maim rather than kill. For all life is precious, nor can any be replaced.'
'Water Spot' looks at Willamette water
Several very good and interesting things are occurring to help us understand the pollution in the Willamette River.
First, for those of you who have cable TV, the 'Water Spot' program tonight (Thursday, October 5) at 8 p.m. on cable 11 will feature the Sierra Club's new report, 'Toxic Mixing Zones.' Michael O'Leary, conservation organizer for the Sierra Club, will be discussing the publication, now in its last draft stages, which catalogs the locations, sizes, contents and associated hazards of nearly two dozen toxic mixing zones in the Willamette River.
The report will be an excellent resource for understanding a certain type of pollution in the Willamette - the millions of pounds of chemicals and metals routinely discharged by permit into the river. (The program will be repeated four times a week through October: every Wednesday morning at 9 throughout the region on cable 11, and every Sunday at noon, Tuesdays at 11 a.m. and Wednesdays at 7:30 p.m. on cable 23 in Washington County only.)
Second, the Department of Environmental Quality guests on the August Water Spot told viewers about DEQ's budgetary proposal to the legislature to analyze and monitor pollutants in the Willamette. This $1.9 million proposal is just what we need in order to better understand the impact of pollutants on the river.
To put this in perspective, remember that the Tualatin Valley Water District is now considering spending almost $400,000,000 on drinking water pipes to the Willamette. (The DEQ guests also explained some of their success in cooperative ventures to diminish pesticide pollution in some smaller streams. A happy thought.)
Third, Governor Kulongoski is approving DEQ's budget proposal, according to a natural resources adviser who visited the Water Spot in September. Good. (Now we need the help of our legislators also.)
All these things are excellent and helpful for those of us who wish to clean up the Willamette. This is true whether we support cleanup on behalf of salmon and fish in general, including fish habitat, or whether we support cleanup for drinking water purposes.
KATHY NEWCOMB, research analyst for Citizens for Safe Water
Sherwood needs Grant's experience
I'm voting for Dave Grant's experienced leadership in the next election (for Sherwood City Council).
There's too much at stake not to pay close attention this time. We've got the water issue, road issue, growth issue and Old Town redevelopment on the table. These are not light issues - especially for a politically inexperienced group trying to take over the council. We need independent leaders like Grant.
He has proven he can listen and take action in the best interest of the community. He's done a great job heading up the council's work with the cultural arts. And when cuts were necessary, he made sure we supported our local festivals, concerts, the YMCA and everything else that makes Sherwood so family-friendly.
We'd be foolish not to re-elect Grant this fall.
Please vote 'yes' on Measure 34-126
I am writing in support of Measure 34-126 for the operating levy for all Washington County libraries.
The city of Tigard built a new library in May 2002. This was a great thing for our great city. We need to act now to keep this library going.
The Tigard library is partially funded by the Washington County Cooperative Library Services, as are the other Washington County libraries. Tigard's share of county funding has decreased since the last operating levy failed. To maintain the 12 libraries across the county this will cost the taxpayers only 17 cents per $1,000 assessed valuation for the next four years. That is an average of approximately $33 per year.
Please join me and my friends in voting 'yes' on Measure 34-126 this coming November for the Tigard library and other Washington County libraries.
A simple Bull Mtn. decision-making tool
I've developed a handy one-question tool to use when deciding whether or not to vote for a new city of Bull Mountain on the November ballot.
First, take a good look around Bull Mountain during this time of rapid growth. Then ask yourself if you like the development patterns, the distribution of housing density, the traffic flows, the tree-cutting policies, the annexation policies, the sidewalk and streetlight situation, the number of acres of parks and open spaces, the total of your tax dollars that actually come back to Bull Mountain and the people making those decisions.
If you don't like how these things are impacting you, or if you do like the direction that Bull Mountain has been heading, vote 'yes' on the ballot measure to form a new city of Bull Mountain - implement local control to change those things that you don't like and achieve those things that you want for your family, your neighbors and your neighborhood.
If you're happy with the current direction in the community, and with how things are being done without you or local input, then by all means do not vote to support incorporation, and send a message to those who have control of our community from elsewhere that you want more of the same.
The important choice belongs to each of us, yet the question is a simple one. And the answer is even simpler: Vote 'yes' on Measure 34-129, to take local control of Bull Mountain.
Unincorporated Bull Mtn.
A 'yes' vote for incorporation urged
I have been a Bull Mountain resident in unincorporated Washington County for 26 years and am a bit perplexed by the notion people have that their taxes will not be higher if we vote 'no' on incorporation of Bull Mountain as a city. Quite the opposite.
The bottom line is we will be paying more taxes either to the city of Tigard or the city of Bull Mountain.
There is no status quo. Would you rather be in control of the livability and development of your city or would you rather be in the city of Tigard and let the development continue in our area with no say on how our area further develops?
Vote 'yes' for incorporation.
Unincorporated Bull Mountain
Annexation property set for development?
Tigard is continuing on its annexation frenzy on Bull Mountain.
Tigard City Councilor Tom Woodruff says Aug. 24 letter to the editor that's because lots of people want to join Tigard, and that it's an exercise in self-determination. In reality, almost all 'consent annexation' properties are up for sale to developers, and the developers know that the development process in Tigard is a rubber stamp, with variances doled out like crackers to the pigeons.
A good example is the Arlington Heights III development currently under construction on Bull Mountain, where a total of 29 variances or adjustments were applied for and all 29 were granted by Tigard. If the developers wait until the new city of Bull Mountain is formed, they have no assurance that the process will be so simple.
Hopefully, by forming a new city, Bull Mountain can implement reasonable development rules that are actually enforced instead of routinely circumvented for the convenience of the developers.
Unincorporated Bull Mtn.