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I am ready to answer the hard question in election

I would like to express my thanks to the West Linn Tidings (editorial, 4-3-08) for having the foresight to remind people to ask candidates hard questions and learn about their platform and goals for our citizens. What a great reminder of the privilege in this country to have a voice through our vote.

I am running for State Representative House District 37, which includes West Linn, Tualatin, Stafford, Durham and River Grove. The editorial is especially important to me because I want the voters to know that I am committed to bringing the type of change to state government that truly reflects the citizen's voice. Saying its time for a change is one thing, making change happen is another. You have my word; with me as your State Representative I will make change happen.

As a two-term West Linn city councilor, I can refer to many changes that have had a positive impact on citizens and I intend to bring this working experience to Salem and make sure that state level government truly reflects the needed services and reform the local level needs.

I have been instrumental in completely restructuring our West Linn government through the hiring of a qualified experienced city manager that brought professional experience, skill and ability to create a solid staff to operate our city. This has been a wonderful gift to the citizens.

I have been involved closely in auditing your tax dollars and seeing that they are spent in the most judicious way. Under my watch, citizens have and will see sustainable roadway maintenance, a fully staffed police department to provide for our safety and up to date technology at city hall that allows for efficiency in city services. Communication between city hall and the public has never been as good as it is now, and I will see that the tools we have implemented here to achieve this necessary communication will be brought and instituted at the state level.

There are several top priorities I want to focus on in Salem. I will share those with you now, but I want you to know that I want to represent you. I want to hear what your concerns and priorities are. I want to know how I can make your life better and the future better for your children.

Education is a primary issue for me.

I know that investing in quality education is the key to a quality workforce and workforce development. As an executive director for a non-profit social service agency, I see the need for family-wage jobs and the security that brings to the entire family. Education is the foundation for both jobs and the workforce that fills those jobs. I intend to work with administrators in education and review concerns and issues that impede their ability to provide what they know to be the best education for you and your children. Beginning with educators themselves is the key to understanding how to make our educational system better.

I also am deeply concerned about health care and housing. Along with a safe home, every Oregonian should have access to healthcare that not only covers immediate health concerns but also long term sustainable and preventive care.

There is a solution to health care. In my 20+ years in insurance and the health care industry, I have developed first hand knowledge of how to make our systems work. I promise you that I will seek the best way to address this national crisis. It is my goal to be an example of innovation and success to other states. I want to hear your ideas on this very important issue. I know there is a blended solution that will work for Oregonians.

Life is short. I invite you to come along with me on my campaign and help me every step of the way to make changes that give us a quality life here in beautiful Oregon. I am going to really enjoy serving you, and I hope you will enjoy and engage your government in making changes and providing services that best utilize your tax dollars.

Please vote for me in the May primary if you are able and most certainly in November. Thank you.

Michele Eberle is a West Linn resident and city councilor. For more information on her campaign for Oregon House seat 37, visit www.ElectMicheleEberle.com.