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Becker best choice for Gresham mayor

I believe that Charles Becker is the most qualified and most experienced person to lead Gresham for the next four years.

As a former member of the Gresham City Council, I am well aware of the contributions Becker has made to the city. I can attest to his dedication to fulfill his duties with integrity, intelligence and experience.

During his tenure as mayor of Gresham, he has played a leading role in the revitalization of historic downtown, the opening of Gresham Station retail center and the stimulation of economic development. His leadership has extended far beyond the projects mentioned above, but the result is that citizens are now working and shopping and seeking recreation within our beautiful city.

Gresham has been fortunate to benefit from Charles Becker's voluntary services. Vote for him so that he may continue his good work.

Betty Pritchett Light

Gresham

Smith has earned support in District 52

In my opinion, residents of Oregon House District 52 have an easy decision to make this coming election. They should return Rep. Patti Smith, R-Corbett, to the seat she has held so that she may continue to be effective on behalf of all the residents of District 52.

Knowing Patti Smith through dealings with her on important issues, I can attest to her strong work ethic, problem solving abilities and keen awareness of balancing multiple interests. I have observed Patti Smith handle issues concerning transportation, agriculture and natural resources. I also served with Rep. Smith on the Northeast Multnomah County Community Association. Despite the fact that she and I belong to different political parties, I find her to be effective, consensus building and free of partisan politics.

As a member of the Governor's Renewable Energy Working Group, she can help advocate for renewable energy for consumers and businesses, help decrease dependence on oil and help create jobs. Consumers have also benefited from Rep. Smith's work in the areas of identity theft and the meth epidemic. She has been reappointed to the governor's Meth Task Force, which will deal with funding of drug courts and drug prevention, two important topics in this state. It is also noteworthy that the Oregon Council of Seniors and Oregon Nurses Association support Rep. Smith.

There are compelling reasons to return Rep. Patti Smith to Salem, and I strongly urge voters in District 52 to cast their vote for her.

G. JOSEPH GORCIAK

Portland

Troutdale council needs Kight, Smith

If you were looking for another reason to elect Pat Smith and Jim Kight to the City Council, Mayor Paul Thalhofer just provided that opportunity.

The mayor's screed, Outlook Oct. 18, against both Pat and Jim proves that we need experienced leadership on the City Council. We need strong leaders representing us who are not always in lockstep with our mayor and are not afraid to stand up to a mayor who has been in public office for more than two decades.

Because of their generous service of both time and involvement in our city, both Jim Kight and Pat Smith deserve our support. Please vote for Pat Smith and Jim Kight for City Council in Troutdale.

RONALD GRAHAM

Troutdale

Becker will strike right balance

Interactive partnering between citizens and their local governments is not just good politics. Cooperating across traditional boundaries is the only hope for smart, innovative solutions to strengthen our economy and environment and improve the quality of the place we call home.

It is imperative that citizen confidence and participation in government and governance be achieved through a better understanding of government and its role. It is time for the city of Gresham to look farther into the future and not ignore the consequences of current and past governing policies.

The city of Gresham must take every step to ensure that we exercise community choice in land development, preservation and rehabilitation decisions that complement our neighborhoods and build on our commitment to environmental protection. To ensure that Gresham citizens have an opportunity for a role in this process, I support Mayor Charles Becker for re-election.

I have known Mayor Becker for more than 30 years. He has integrity and experience and will provide a voice for the entire community. Mayor Becker has the ability and the desire to balance planning and community development techniques that will link environmental protection, economic prosperity and community well-being and to do it in an interactive and transparent manner.

MIKE HENTON

Gresham

Nielsen-Hood deserves seat

I have known Carol Nielsen-Hood since 1991. She is committed to the city of Gresham. She has been involved with city and state governments, Mt. Hood Community College and especially the business community. She is honest and an outstanding citizen of Gresham.

She knows what is going on in Gresham and knows the contacts to get things done.

She deserves your vote. Please cast your ballot for Carol Nielsen-Hood for City Council.

BETTY CHISUM

Gresham

Smith didn't support law

I write in regard to recent letters about Rep. Patti Smith that assert she values our natural resources positively enough to be counted on to balance them with economic interests.

In 1999, the Oregon Legislature voted overwhelmingly to pass a landmark 'pesticide use reporting' law. Today, however, there is still NO information about the manner in which pesticides are sprayed in our communities - because the 2001 and 2003 legislatures withheld funding from the program.

I have personally asked Rep. Smith what she has against gathering data on pesticide use that threatens water quality and public health. As I understood her answer, uniform reporting of data by county could reveal the identities of large corporate farms in certain rural counties.

In 2005, she followed Republican House leadership by allocating zero dollars for pesticide monitoring in the Department of Agriculture's budget. Smith has not earned my trust when it comes to balancing natural resources with special interests.

SUSAN DREW

Sandy

Smith stands up for safety

I would like to express our sincere gratitude to Rep. Patti Smith for her continued efforts to make the Highway 26 Safety Corridor safer for us all.

She assists our commission in working with the various agencies as well as assisting with inter-agency coordination of highway safety matters.

She is working to have the safety corridor extended east toward Warm Springs. This change is due to the numerous fatal crashes that have occurred in the area this year.

She also is proposing a change to toughen the dangerous driving laws this next session. Whenever we need help, we can count on Patti Smith.

JERRY SABEL

Highway 26 Safety Corridor

Citizens Advisory Commission

Welches

Smith, Kight deserve thanks

You can measure the quality of a leader by how they treat their political rivals. The negative comments on the part of the mayor of Troutdale, Paul Thalhofer, proves once again why we need leadership at the top.

Pat Smith and Jim Kight, who are both attacked in the guest column by the mayor in the Oct. 18 edition of The Outlook, have spent many hours in community service for the city of Troutdale. Troutdale is a better place as a result of their public involvement while they served on the City Council. They should be thanked and not derided by the mayor - of all people.

I think both Pat Smith and Jim Kight deserve better treatment than this. If this is how the mayor of the city responds publicly to those who served the city, why would anyone want to run for public office in Troutdale? It appears the mayor feels threatened by those councilors who don't always agree with him. Shame on the mayor.

He should make a public apology to Smith and Kight in your paper.

A.H. SMITH

Troutdale

Vier right choice for council seat

My family and I feel privileged to be longtime residents of the beautiful city of Troutdale. We care about Troutdale's future and those who put Marianne Vier's signs in their yards care too: citizens of Troutdale, elderly care providers, property owners, nature enthusiasts, city volunteers, council members and our own mayor.

Many of whom have worked with Jim Kight, but it is Marianne Vier who they support for Troutdale City Council Position 1.

DIANE WHITE

Troutdale

Thanks for voters' guide

Thank you for printing the League of Women Voter's Guide to the upcoming election. It is refreshing to get a non-partisan, objective overview of candidates and issues. I have learned to completely tune out the negative mud-slinging one gets on TV, and finding a guide that requires candidates to answer specific questions about issues is refreshing. The Outlook and the Community Newspaper Group are to be congratulated in their role in helping publish this guide.

MIKE BURTON

Portland

Republicans need to ensure justice

Republicans should control Congress after the elections because the war against the present evil that is targeting our country cannot be given up.

The radical Muslims see our present lack of resolve as encouraging. If we don't prevail and see our commitment through, our power and status will surely end. Unpopular, entered into wrongly, perhaps not the best location to take on, yet let us prevail with justice. Does any unrighteous act of a member of our armed forces compare remotely to what the radicals do?

What kind of mind considers any act justification for this, 9/11, or indiscriminately blowing up people?

JIM STEIN

Corbett

Pung is a worthy candidate

After purchasing a townhouse in downtown Gresham several years ago, I would occasionally look out the front window of my new home and glimpse a man zipping by in his wheelchair. The American flag flew behind him and sometimes his little dog rode along on his lap. Because he always seemed to be going somewhere, I assumed he must be a very busy man.

The man, who I was fortunate to become acquainted with and now admire because of his many community and civic contributions, is Bob Pung.

As president of the Central City Neighborhood Association, one of Bob's goals was to bring residents face-to-face with city and county officials. The opportunity to learn from the guest speakers he invited to our neighborhood meetings was appreciated.

On a personal level, I was grateful for his encouragement to become more involved.

Citizen involvement is critical to the well being of communities. In that respect, Bob Pung has been setting a fine example for years, which a front-page story in the Oct. 7 issue of The Outlook affirms. Today, he is running for City Council, and I'd like to offer my support.

Yes, Bob Pung is a busy man. He's busy helping make certain Gresham remains a wonderful community. If you see Bob, be sure to thank him.

SAM VANMETER

Portland

Thomas deserves re-election

I encourage the citizens of Troutdale to retain Norm Thomas on their City Council. I have had the pleasure of working closely with Norm over the past year.

He and I formed the Inter-Council group where the Councilors of Troutdale, Wood Village, Fairview and Gresham meet monthly, in an informal setting, to discuss our shared concerns and foster cooperation between the four cities.

Over the past year, we have worked on a variety of issues, such as regional transportation, essential emergency services, urban renewal assistance and our similar legislative goals.

We strive hard to find new solutions and common ground. We believe our efforts have developed a familiarity to keep everyone involved, informed and up to date.

Norm has been very faithful to this much needed improvement in communication.

His efforts not only help Troutdale in representing its citizens, but also our whole East County region.

I heartily support Norm Thomas for re-election to the Troutdale City Council.

PAUL C. WARR-KING

Gresham City Councilor

Minnis deserves East County vote

I've read both The Outlook's endorsement of Karen Minnis and The Oregonian's endorsement of Rob Brading, and I've decided whose advice I'll take. No thanks to the downtown Portland liberals at The Oregonian's editorial board.

They'd have us overlook the fact that Karen Minnis has ensured that East County schools have gotten their fair share of funding from Multnomah County, secured more than a million dollars to fight gangs in Rockwood and made efforts to change the state's mental health system. They'd have us overlook her plan to stabilize school funding, her work to protect seniors and the $150,000 for the Gresham Center for the Arts.

Give up all of this for a newcomer whose No. 1 priority is an unconstitutional pornography tax? I don't think so. Portland liberals, I'll be focused on East County this election. That's why I'm voting for Karen Minnis.

Lindsey Dalton

Fairview

Minnis ignores League of Women

On Thursday evening, Oct. 19, the League of Woman Voters hosted a candidate forum at the Gresham City Council Chambers.

Jill Selman-Ringer, Democratic candidate for State Representative, District 50 was there as was her Republican opponent, John Lim. Also present was Rob Brading, Democratic candidate for State Representative, District 49.

You know who wasn't there and who didn't even have the courtesy to RSVP? None other than Karen Minnis. Minnis once again demonstrates her contempt for ordinary citizens.

Unless you are a big corporation or special interest group with bags of money for her campaign, she doesn't want to have anything to do with you. Perhaps she was busily trying to remember more of those unreported fantastic resort vacations she has been on, paid for by these same corporations and special interest groups.

I can't imagine a candidate ignoring the League of Women Voters. Minnis deserves to be put on permanent vacation on Nov. 7!

MIKE MATTINGLY

Gresham

Ignore spin, vote for Karen Minnis

It is obvious that this forum has become a 'bash Karen Minnis column' by people with an agenda. I can't believe the spin. The Karen Minnis they describe is not one I recognize. The letters have been mostly negative rather than about what her opponent might be able to do better. It is plain to see that this is a case of a few people who don't like Minnis and/or her values, so they have mounted a smear campaign against her and they are using this forum to do it.

Minnis is a good person working hard for her constituents. She is in a great position to further those interests as House Speaker. I noticed her list of supporters in the Oct. 18 issue of The Outlook included people in local leadership and businesses that impact East County's local economy that know Minnis and her record of service.

On the other side, money is coming in from outside our area to defeat her. The money is from groups that don't care about East County or our communities or our families. Please do not be fooled by the spin from a few malcontents or the candidate supported by money from outside our area. Money that wants to see Minnis defeated so she can't be a leader in Salem. Please join me in voting for Karen Minnis.

JEFF LUBY

Gresham

Reynolds bond much needed

How many students should make up an elementary school? How many bathrooms should there be? What about the library, the computer lab, the special education classrooms and the music room? How many square feet do they need? How do we renovate older buildings not designed to accommodate the services a modern school must deliver? How do we make room for new students arriving each day? What do we 'band aid' together this week?

Measure 26-88 represents a 10-year facility plan. New schools, more classrooms and renovations districtwide will ensure Reynolds can meet the educational facility needs of all students and protect the community's investment for the future.

East County is still growing. Reynolds is still growing. Please vote yes on 26-88.

Donna Edgley

Co-chairwoman of Neighbors for Reynolds Kids

Troutdale