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Letters to the Editor Oct. 7

Lucky to have someone of Kilian's caliber

New to Gresham and desperately in need of dental expertise, we were most fortunate in discovering Dr. John Kilian. A dozen years later, we are still in awe of his creative problem solving and keen intellect.

Now, when Gresham is in desperate need of additional quality leadership on our City Council, we have the good fortune of having a candidate of John Kilian's caliber on our ballot for council position 6.

His insatiable curiosity, high energy level and enthusiasm for anything that he undertakes has enabled him to generate an endless list of fresh ideas for improving both the livability of Gresham and its governance.

But don't just accept our recommendation without first hearing his ideas at the candidate forum at Gresham City Hall at 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 19, either in person or watching the live telecast on channel 22 at home. If you do, you will remember John Kilian when voting for council position 6.

ED and SHIRLEY LABINOWICZ

Gresham

Bemis won't have time to be effective mayor

Well, isn't this a hoot! Is The Outlook in cahoots with Shane Bemis and Carol Nielsen-Hood?

You do remember me telling you about the Chamber of Commerce voting Bemis citizen of the year without the approval of the citizens of Gresham? Please take note that Carol Nielsen-Hood works for the Chamber of Commerce and now she is running for City Council. Yeah, you're getting the picture.

Do you suppose just maybe the two of them, Bemis and Nielsen-Hood, could possibly work the system? I mean, doesn't Bemis owe the chamber for his citizen of the year thing? And after the Outlook endorses Carol Nielsen-Hood for City Council they say, and I quote, 'some people may be concerned that Nielsen-Hood will have a conflict of interest between her chamber role and her council post.' Well, darned if that doesn't sound logical to me. My vote goes to John Kilian.

As far as Shane Bemis, here is just one more reason for not voting for him as mayor. This is the Gresham revised code article 2.10 section 2.10.010 mayor duties' 1) The mayor is chairperson of the council and the political head of the government of the city, and 2) The discharge of official duties of the mayor currently requires full-time service. There are more requirements, which I won't go into. So I ask you, with Bemis involved in his two or three other business and his young family, why should we be cheated with a mayor who could not possibly be there for us?

My vote goes to Mayor Chuck Becker. Sorry Mark Garber, but then you have been wrong before on your political choices. My advice? Stick to reporting the news; we don't need the paper's bias. Leave that to me and other readers.

ARLENE EASLY

Gresham

Editor's Note: The East Metro Association of Realtors, not the Gresham chamber, is responsible for the citizen of the year award. Managing Editor Tiffaney O'Dell, as well as Publisher Mark Garber, participates in the editorial endorsements.

Wal-Mart's prescription claim won't last for long

To address Wal-Mart's press ad saying they were going to offer $4 prescriptions. I haven't seen any movement in that direction yet. Add that to the question: did they cast it in stone? How long will they offer them?

Traditionally, they have a history of pushing themselves on a community that did not want them there, running the Mom and Pop businesses out, then folding after they do not get enough business, and you have a disaster in the making.

Wal-Mart is not very popular, and I see this latest announcement as a scramble, a last-ditch effort to make more stores, with less picketing.

They have a higher turnover of employees than any other big box store because of low pay and a lot of other reasons. I feel they sell poorly made goods at inflated prices, and I don't see them selling non-cost-effective (for them) prescriptions for long, if ever.

M.K. BROWN

Gresham

Vote Vier for Troutdale Council position 1

Marianne Vier has it together, and I highly recommend you vote her in as our next City Councilor, position 1.

She is endorsed by The Gresham Outlook, she communicates well with local people, and she is very tactful in communicating with city committees and developers. Marianne handles complex issues professionally and with ease.

She is genuinely involved with her community and has a level of understanding and compassion that I do not see in many others.

DOUGLAS DAOUST

Troutdale City Council President

Smith, hard-working, deserves re-election

I see it is election time again and I am writing to urge your support for Patti Smith, our state representative.

Rep. Patti Smith isn't just about politics. She's about the needs of her district and the people of Oregon. I have known Patti for years, and I know that she works across party lines to get the job done. She is a hard-working legislator. She looks at the issues, determines what will be best for her constituents and responds accordingly.

KEN BLANC

Corbett

Kilian deserves votes for Gresham council position

Going to the dentist is never fun, but I know that my dentist and I share more than the maintenance of my Ipana smile. We share a common desire to keep the city of Gresham a vital and proud community.

Dr. John H. Kilian has a passionate interest in maintaining a high standard for family values, safety, health and welfare, fiscal responsibility and education. He has served as a mentor to local and national health education programs, and he has been closely associated with the dental hygiene program at Mt. Hood Community College.

Kilian has declined to accept all endorsements. His only interest is in serving the citizens of Gresham and keeping our city a dynamic and thriving community where we can be proud to live.

I have known John Kilian for more than 25 years. I feel he is a man of honesty and integrity, and I encourage you to support his campaign for Gresham Council position 6.

NANCY GETCH

Gresham

Minnis' interests have nothing to do with East County

Karen Minnis' main appearance in East Multnomah County this year has been the picture of her on the billboard near Fairview. (Not to mention the numerous glossy mailings she has been stuffing in our mailboxes.)

Not once in the last two elections has Karen darkened my door to let me know she was interested in being my representative.

That doesn't mean I am not watching her. What is exceedingly clear is that she has sought to fulfill the desires of some very big out-of-state contributors who fill her campaign coffers.

Correct me if I am wrong, but I don't think payday loan businesses and big pharmaceutical companies are headquartered in East Multnomah County. I don't think there are any tobacco farmers here either.

I am pretty sure that many of the voters in East County would benefit from reining in the monstrous interest rates that payday loan sharks charge to people who are working hard to just get by.

I am also pretty sure that many voters in East County would benefit from helping their tight budgets go further with less expensive drugs. She also blocked the voter-approved tax on cigarettes while taking $15,000 in 2004 from the tobacco industry.

With close to a million dollars she plans to spend on this campaign it seems to me that, much like the sign on I-84, Karen Minnis has become too big for East County.

ERIC NEIWERT

Troutdale

Americans need a brain connected to our backbone

Yes, we must stand up to terrorism, but we must do it intelligently. The current war in Iraq is creating more terrorists than it is destroying. Mel Holst falls back on the tired suggestion that anyone (like Sherry Anderson) who questions the President is somehow unpatriotic.

While I never had the honor of serving in the military, I have countless relatives who have, including a Marine Corps brother and an uncle buried under one of the crosses in Arlington for which Holst rightfully respects. Last week Congress may have thrown out my Sixth Amendment rights, but my first amendment rights are still in play, and I can criticize the president and still be a good, patriotic citizen.

We created a mess in Iraq and far more innocents are dying than would have, even under the tyranny of Saddam Hussein. We must clean up that mess because we are responsible. Unfortunately, that means more American soldiers must die. That doesn't mean we have to do it stupidly and lose more lives than necessary.

Anderson suggests the President be tried for war crimes. Congress took care of that last week while trashing habeas corpus. The President and his cronies will never have to face those charges. During the current wars and potentially in future ones, we have placed our soldiers in danger of being tortured by saying it is OK for us to torture. That is short sighted. Atrocities happen in war; however those at Omaha Beach, Pearl Harbor and Iwo Jima did not torture and did not expect to be tortured when captured. Those that did were held accountable.

Holst also helps to perpetuate the lie that Iraq was connected to 9/11. 'The dirty terrorists in Iraq' were not in Iraq. They were in Afghanistan. Every time the President is forced to admit this fact, within a sentence he spouts some innuendo that suggests there was a connection between Iraq and 9/11.

Perhaps Holst is one of the third of Americans who still believes this lie because the President has told it so many times before finally being forced to admit the truth. Osama bin Laden (you know, the one actually responsible for 9/11) is a Saudi and is on the border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. A smart person with a spine would have our troops there.

MICHAEL STREETER

Gresham

Mayor shouldn't take sole credit for successes

I left the Gresham mayoral candidates debate in total disbelief. Claiming credit for things that were finalized on the mayor's watch but began years earlier discredits the hundreds of people who worked to get them in place. Some of Margaret Weil's work was finalized on my watch. I never claimed it as mine. We deserve honesty from our mayor.

Our mayor claimed that he initiated Metro's construction excise tax to fund new development. That would come as a surprise to Metro's Michael Jordan and councilors Brian Newman and Rod Park. They were the major players who initiated and developed the construction excise tax program. It was Councilor Park who went to the wall for Gresham. He refused to back the first proposal unless it included what is called the Number 2 Expansion and Extension Area Planning Fund. That fund will help pay for the development of Springwater. We deserve integrity from our mayor.

We desperately need straightforward thinking from the mayor's office. As mayor, Shane Bemis will make accountability his top priority, because he knows it's an essential part of doing business - and government is just a business that provides public services. As taxpayers and ratepayers, we deserve accountability from our mayor.

Shane Bemis is quick to give others credit for the legislative changes that transferred Multnomah County Roads to the City. But he was the one who walked the Capitol halls talking and persuading legislators to vote for the change in road ownership. That's the kind of honest leadership we deserve from our mayor.

Shane Bemis can't be bought as some of the mayor's supporters are claiming. A case in point - when the fire department was promoting the Fire District 10 takeover of fire and emergency services and a potential 79-percent tax increase, Bemis told union leaders that while he appreciated their previous support for his council election, he just couldn't support them on that issue. The department respects that kind of integrity and supports him in the upcoming November election.

That's Shane Bemis - accountability, honesty and integrity. He deserves our vote in November.

GUSSIE McROBERT

Gresham

College bond is best value on ballot

Please join me in supporting bond measure 26-83. Keeping the quality of our community college is vital for our future. Our children, our grandchildren and businesses like mine benefit from hiring local workers. A 'yes' vote on the Mt. Hood Community College bond measure will fund modest upgrades to facilities and provide for much needed maintenance.

The bond measure will also allow the college to expand its excellent Early Childhood Development Center. The center's two-year program trains childcare workers. The center also offers hard-to-find, affordable child-care for all community college students.

Convenient childcare makes a big difference often enabling and always enriching the educational experience. These parents will soon be employable in numerous trades as well as the child-care industry, which desperately needs more skilled labor to work in the 100-plus childcare facilities in our area.

This may come as a surprise, but there's been almost no common-sense renovation done at the college since 1974. That is shocking. All you need to do is to visit the college, and you can tell these updates are long overdue and are only going to get worse and cost more if we continue to ignore them.

This tax measure is for $58.8 million, which equals .17 cents per $1,000 of assessed value or $34 per year (on a $200,000 home). For me and most of my neighbors, what a darn good deal!

As a responsible taxpayer, I hate paying taxes for wasteful or inefficient programs. After carefully looking at the return on these tax dollars, the 'bang for my buck' so to speak, I feel good about the way this money will be spent. Please join me in supporting MHCC bond measure - it makes good sense for our future and it's the best value on the ballot.

GENE ANN SHEPHERD

Gresham Heights Learning Center and Kids and Co.

Gresham