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Letters - Nov. 3, 2011

Measure 3-388 is worth supporting

To the Editor:

Please support Measure 3-388. This measure increases local control of urban renewal decisions and will help get our community back to work. Measure 3-388 will enable unincorporated Clackamas County to build the roads, intersections and sidewalks it needs to attract and retain businesses without raising taxes.

Measure 3-388 has strong backing from our local business community including the Clackamas County Business Alliance, the Westside Economic Alliance, the Portland Business Alliance, Oregon Iron Works, Marks Metal Technologies, Miles Fiberglass, Pioneer Pump and the Oregon Building Trades Council.

Measure 3-388 has received editorial board endorsements from the Lake Oswego Review, The Oregonian and the West Linn Tidings, and many other local papers.

It has earned all this support because Measure 3-388 rightly allows people who live within the boundaries of a proposed urban renewal district - those who will be paying for the projects to be constructed - to vote on creating of a district. The other measure decreases local control and would cost more.

Please join me in voting yes for Measure 3-388 and no on Measure 3-386.

Chuck O'Leary

President

Lake Oswego Chamber of Commerce

Lake had public access as recently as 1960

To the Editor:

The debate over public access to Oswego Lake is an issue that never seems to go away.

In an opinion piece in the Oct. 27 issue of the Lake Oswego Review, Doug Thomas states, 'The last time the lake was open (to the public) was when Native Americans lived here.' As president of the Lake Corporation board, Thomas should know better.

The general public had access to the lake as recently as 1960 at a large commercial swim park on the east end of the main lake. This swimming and boating concession operated for 56 years. All the friction over lake access might have been avoided if the city had purchased the swim park when it came up for sale in 1960. The city was offered an option to buy it for $200,000, but decided the price was too high and let the property go to developers. The Bay Roc apartments replaced the swim park and that was the end of public access - as well as the iconic view of the lake from the east end.

As someone who grew up swimming in the lake and whose father served on the Lake Corporation board, I understand the Lake Corporation's position on restricting access. But as a 21-year resident of Mountain Park, I also understand the frustration of residents who yearn to catch as much as a glimpse of the 'forbidden lake.' I predict this frustration will continue to fester until some kind of compromise is worked out.

Perhaps the board could find a way to provide weekend boat tours of the main lake or could rent a limited number of 'clean' canoes to the public for a fee. That would assure that no invasive species were being introduced and the concession might generate enough money to cover operating costs.

Susanna Campbell Kuo

Lake Oswego

Stopping by the lake on a rainy evening

To the Editor:

Apologies to Robert Frost

Whose lake this is I think I know.

I'm not entirely certain, though.

I think he lives somewhere in town

And has a place for looking down

On someone's reckless sons or daughters

Splashing about in forbidden waters.

There's not a thing that makes him madder

Than people low on the social ladder

Afloat upon the broad expanse

Like invasive, non-native plants.

The lake is lovely, dark and deep.

But I have promises to keep,

And beer to drink before I sleep,

And beer to drink before I sleep.

James Fleming

Lake Oswego

Success story is a good way to gauge impact

To the Editor:

There are many great opportunities in Lake Oswego. One such success story clearly shows the positive impact new development (Lake View Village) has had on our downtown.

A publicly managed project is successful when it makes money for the public coffers. Lake View Village is a cornerstone project in the Lake Oswego's Redevelopment Plan. The project is a success. It has created more than 300 new jobs on the block, more than $25 million in new retail sales each year and provides the community 20 times the original tax revenue for the property.

2010-2011 Property Values (per Clackamas County Assessor's Office)

Lake View Village (not including public parking structure):

Real Market Value $27,609,548

Taxable Assessed Value $22,274,675

Gross Tax $384,586

Real Market Land Value $2,236,148

Real Market Building Value $25,373,400

Block 137 (Wizer's)

Real Market Value $4,331,529

Taxable Assessed Value $2,843,480

Gross Tax $49,308

Real Market Land Value $3,325,699

Real Market Building Value $1,005,830

As previously said, let's work together to make change work for us.

Linda Adlard

Lake Oswego

A member of Keep Lake Oswego Great

Vote yes on 3-388; vote no on 3-386

To the Editor:

If you care about local control, saving money and helping communities outside of Lake Oswego, I strongly urge you as a member of our community to vote yes on Measure 3-388 and no on Measure 3-386.

Measure 3-388 does two important things. It increases local control of urban renewal decisions. And it protects urban renewal as a tool to help communities in Clackamas County create jobs and build the roads, intersections, and sidewalks they need.

The other measure was put on the ballot by paid signature gatherers with funding from out-of-state interests. It would hurt our ability to create jobs and it would cost a fortune by requiring countywide elections over whether one neighborhood may spend its own money to improve failing roads and intersections. That doesn't make sense. Please vote yes on Measure 3-388 and no on Measure 3-386.

Rosie Stephens

Lake Oswego

Look at what makes Lake Oswego 'great'

To the Editor:

I've noticed that each week there are several letters written about specific issues, and in making their points the writers often criticize 'the city' or specific elected officials. I think it's helpful to step back and take note of just what the city accomplishes on our behalf. While researching budget information, I found these facts of note:

In FY 2011-2012, the city will use public funds to:

* Provide $2 million in financial assistance to the Lake Oswego School District

* Issue 3,235 building permits

* Respond to 24,000 calls to 9-1-1

* Respond to 4,000 fire and medical emergencies

* Maintain 178 miles of streets

* Produce 2 billion gallons of drinking water

* Circulate 1.4 million library materials

These statistics describe some of what goes on when the basics of local government are being taken care of by city staff under the oversight of the city manager and with the cooperation of the mayor and city council. While we may advocate for or against certain larger multi-phase projects, I'd like now to acknowledge the paid and unpaid human resources that help keep Lake Oswego great.

Terry Harty

Lake Oswego

Looking for Remsen's Market memories

To the Editor:

My name is Collette Remsen. I am the granddaughter of Chet and Evelyn Remsen.

My grandparents used to own Remsen's Market on the corner of Lakeview Boulevard and Bryant Road. They owned the entire building, which is now a 7-11.

When they first had the market back in early late 50s early 60s, they lived upstairs where the office buildings are now. It's was a two- bedroom apartment and the market was the entire building below them.

They eventually moved next door to 4431 S.W. Lakeview Blvd., in the green house in which my father now lives and moved into after my grandparents passed away.

Old timers still remember the hill as Remsen's Hill, which is 'Bryant' and they called it Remsen's corner. Wizers and Remsen's Market were the only two markets in Lake Oswego (back then).

The name changed in the early 60s to Remsen's Lake Side Thriftway.

I have pictures and some stuff on the market but I can't find anything on the Internet. Can you please help me or point me in the right direction? I am 47 years old and I am afraid if I don't get something on the Internet or out there about it, that this wonderful part of Lake Oswego history will be lost.

My grandparents were wonderful people and loved by the community. It's heartbreaking that I can't find anything on the market. It's like it did not exist.

I currently live in Lake Oswego, also. If you have any information or photos from Remsen's Market from the 1950s or 60s, please send them in care of my father, Bill Remsen, to 4431 S.W. Lakeview Blvd., Lake Oswego, OR 97035, or by email to

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or on Facebook at Remsen's Market.

Thank you.

Collette Remsen

Lake Oswego

Support 3-388 to allow districts to be tailored

To the Editor:

Two measures (3-386 and 3-388) that relate to Urban Renewal Districts have found their way to the Clackamas County ballot this November and both deal with giving the voters a say in forming them.

URDs are an important tool in the economic development of an area but the decision to form one is best left to the residents living with in its boundaries.

Clackamas County is economically and geographically varied, ranging from forested wilderness to near urban locations and everything in between. The needs and issues facing a farming community are quite different from what you find in an area that lies adjacent to a major city.

Were 3-386 to pass, the potential for the larger more urban areas of the county to shut down renewal projects in the less populated places could suppress any attempt for capital improvements in these locales.

As a reminder, the Government Camp improvements were made possible by an URD. 3-388, on the other hand, limits the voting to only those residents within the proposed URD.

Vote no on 3-386 and yes for progress on 3-388.

Paul Riggs

Portland

'Keep the vote local:' Support 388

To the Editor:

I question if people of Clackamas County fully understand the consequences of voting for Ballot Measure 3-386?

Measure 3-386 applies only to unincorporated communities, the small rural communities of this county. It would require the entire county to vote their approval for unincorporated villages and towns to do any form of urban improvement.

Do you honestly believe the people of Oregon City or Milwaukie - or any of the other heavily populated incorporated cities and towns - the suburbs of Portland, would vote to approve a measure to improve parking in Sandy, put an improved bridge over Highway 26 between Government Camp and Ski Bowl or to improve the roads in Estacada? Requiring a countywide vote will hamstring all improvements for those of us in these rural areas that are not incorporated.

Ballot Measure 3-388 requires a vote of the citizens. But only the citizens of the area involved. Not those who live on the other side of the county and do not benefit from improvements in our small rural towns and villages. Can you imagine having to run a countywide campaign every time you need to improve your little village?

Keep the vote local. Vote for Ballot Measure 3-388

Fran Mazzara

Welches

Vote yes for 3-388 and no on 3-386

To the Editor:

Again, we have out (of) state people trying to put their two-cents in where it is not wanted.

Americans for prosperity, where is the prosperity when you throw a monkey wrench into a system that was voted into law by local people and was working? Now it will be almost impossible to get anything done and, along with that, any jobs that are so badly needed will not be avaliable.

So therefore my vote was no for 3-386 and yes for 3-388.

Robert Glassburn

West Linn

Vote yes on Measure 3-388

To the Editor:

No on Measure 3-386 and yes on Measure 3-388. It's that simple.

By now everyone has received their mail-in ballot for Clackamas County and most voters are probably totally confused about the two ballot measures dealing with urban renewal.

Measure 3-388 is the measure to vote yes on. It will increase local control over urban renewal and help create jobs for infrastructure renewal.

Measure 3-386 would require county-wide vote for local neighborhood issues. How would anyone in East County understand a local issue in West Linn and be able to vote intelligently?

I strongly urge a no on 3-886 and yes on 3-388. It's that simple. Let's keep control local and in our neighborhoods.

Jay Minor

West Linn