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Dont generalize in Stafford

In response to the opinion piece in the Tidings that made reference to 'pavers and savers' in the Stafford area, it is offensive to my family to be called 'pavers.'

We happen to believe the best course of action in the rural Stafford area is to develop the now non-productive farmland into an environmentally friendly living space close to the metropolitan area of Portland.

Our grandparents first bought their 60 acres on Johnson Road in 1906, and members of the family still live there. The land was once highly productive, supporting crops of hay, vegetables, fruit trees and the raising of livestock.

It now lays dormant because of poor soil conditions and the lack of profitability of raising small crops. Our family has 60 beautiful acres but can not make a living working the land. We are not able do anything else with it, either, because of the current building restrictions.

We love the beauty of the Stafford area and have continued to respect and admire it as a family for more than 100 years.

We think it would be best for the community to develop this area.

We should not be considered 'pavers' because we would like to see the Stafford area responsibly developed into an Eco-friendly work and living space, while at the same time, respecting all the sensitive areas. Our vision is to create a community, close to the metropolitan Portland area, where the citizens of Oregon can work and play, and at the same time, enjoy the natural beauty this close-in area has to offer.

It does not make sense to us to make families drive added miles to the outskirts of the Metro area to live when their workplace is in Portland.

We feel we would not be responsible citizens if we encouraged further environmental pollution that would come from additional highway travel time for workers and their families. Further, it is not financially sound for families to live a great distance from their workplace when the cost of fuel has escalated.

It is easy for those residents in the area who live on one or two-acre parcels to want to keep the status quo.

It is the area's residents with larger parcels, who can no longer make a living on the non-productive farmland, who wish to see a responsible, environmentally friendly community developed. We feel this would be a better use of the land than leaving it uncared for, non-productive and vacant.

We believe the responsible course of action would be to create a community for work and play, while at the same time, preserving the integrity and beauty of the area.

We envision a community close to downtown Portland with parks, streams and trails right at your fingertips. What better thing could we do, than share this beautiful area with the citizens of Oregon.

Art Fiala is a resident of Carnation, Wash.