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Letters to the Editor for April 23

Candidate forum set for April 29

On Tuesday, April 29, voters will have a great opportunity to take a close look at five quality Democratic candidates running for the state House in districts 49, 50 and 52.

Winks, 1240 S. Troutdale Road, Troutdale, will be the host site for the Candidate Forum moderated by Sen. Laurie Monnes Anderson. The forum begins at 6:30 p.m. and features candidates Nick Kahl and Barbara Kyle, contending for the Democratic nod in District 49; Suzanne VanOrman and Steve Richkind, who are vying for the Democratic vote in District 52; and Greg Matthews, who is running in an unopposed primary in District 50 and will face Rep. John Lim in the fall.

Sponsoring this event are the East Suburban Democrats of the Multnomah County Democratic Party. Pizza and politics will be provided, but space is limited, so come early!

Carla 'KC' Hanson

Chairwoman, Multnomah County

Democratic Party

Portland

Children need skate park soon

I was riding my board down Main Avenue when two police officers came along. They said, 'No skateboarding on Gresham streets or sidewalks' then they confiscated my skateboard. After that I went to the Gromshop and asked the owner Troy Moore, 'Why can't skateboarders ride on Gresham streets or sidewalks?' Troy said he didn't know and said he would call City Hall. The person at City Hall told Troy that the skateboarders are ruining the benches, sidewalks and handrails in Gresham.

The solution to the problem would be easy. The city needs to realize we should join together as a community and give the children something better to do with their time. A skate park would not only give the children something fun to do, it would give them plenty of exercise. It would also build character and self-esteem. When a child is given the chance to excel in something, and it is made available to them, they would usually choose that rather than just walking about the streets looking for 'something' to do.

I feel that a skate park would be perfect, whereas I myself love to ride my skateboard, it's fun to be with my friends and try to learn new tricks. All we want is to be able to ride our skateboards. Not all children who ride skateboards get into trouble so it is not fair to say we ruin everything. It's lots of fun. It's not fair to us that we are not allowed to skateboard. Growing up most of you were allowed to skateboard whenever you wanted and people didn't think you were trouble. Why shouldn't we be given the same treatment? Were you considered a bad kid just because you like to skateboard and have fun?

If the city doesn't make its decision soon to build the skate park as agreed upon, the kids will be forced to skate in non-designated areas. Skateboarding doesn't create problems. What it will do for the city in the long run is to help occupy the children's time in a good way so that they won't be out getting in trouble. The people of the city of Gresham have been working on a plan for four years to build this park, however, the actual groundbreaking of the park has been held up for one reason of another. How fair is that?

Tyler Shaver

Gresham

McKeel would continue Roberts' work

I have worked for Commissioner Lonnie Roberts on a part-time basis since the start of his first campaign; we have worked very hard to bring the needs of East Multnomah County to the attention of the rest of the Commission. Commissioner Roberts has endorsed Diane McKeel for Multnomah County Commissioner. I am adding my own endorsement of Diane.

We need someone who would carry on the work that Commissioner Roberts started. I have every confidence that Diane McKeel has the ability to do just that. She has the experience in business that we need and will look at all sides of the issues to get information. Then, she'll make a decision and stick with it. Diane McKeel's experience in the private sector and work in the community make her the strongest candidate to fill Commissioner Roberts' seat on the commission.

Diane strongly supports public safety to protect businesses so that we can attract family-wage jobs to East County. She is also a strong supporter of health care needs. Finally, she'll work to bring departments and agencies together to avoid or eliminate duplication and overlap in services that our tax dollars provide.

Vote Diane McKeel for county commissioner District 4.

ROBERT PAINE

Portland