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Letter about giving had wrong info

To the Editor:

In a Dec. 11 Letter to the Editor ('Be smart, efficient with your giving'), there were a number of inaccuracies regarding giving to United Way of the Columbia-Willamette.

As a resident of Lake Oswego and an employee of Intel, a major contributor to United Way, I'd like to set the record straight.

Here are the facts:

1. No overhead fees are deducted from any donation made to United Way. That's the case whether a donation is given to the Community Fund to support projects in the area of education, health and income, or is given as a designated gift to a specific charity. Intel, along with 16 other companies in the Portland Metro Area, cover the overhead expenses as United Way Cornerstone Partners.

2. Giving to the United Way Community Fund supports a variety of programs identified after extensive research about the needs in the community and a rigorous process of selecting partners to ensure measurable results. However, you can also designate gifts to any 501c3.

3. Giving to United Way is effective and efficient. Check Charity Navigator (www.charitynavigator.or), a non-profit evaluator which gives United Way of the Columbia-Willamette its highest four-star rating for exceeding industry standards.

Intel and our employees and retirees just completed our annual campaign and gave $5.9 million to United Way. We did this because we trust the organization, believe in its mission and are proud to partner with them in advancing the common good in our region. I encourage everyone to take the time to learn more about United Way by visiting its Web site www.unitedway-pdx.org. Then join Intel employees in giving generously - the needs have never been greater.

Bill MacKenzie

Communications Manager

Intel Corporate Affairs

Lake Oswego

Competition brings down bidding costs

To the Editor:

Should it be of any surprise that a competitive bidding process has yielded lower costs on the sewer interceptor project? ('A bit of a break' in the Dec. 12 edition of the Lake Oswego Review).

Generating competition among qualified contractors in combination with a rigorous pre-qualification process should be the procurement approach for the vast majority of construction projects and other services undertaken by the city of Lake Oswego.

Rick Parfrey

Lake Oswego

Green Teens: Stop idling those vehicles

To the Editor:

In today's world, the environment often takes center stage.

And, while in favor of preserving our earth, many people feel overwhelmed by the massive amount of work to be done and the stress that can accompany such changes. What people don't seem to realize is that even small changes can have a lasting impact if they have the support of a community.

Spearheading such a movement is a group known as the Green Teens, three local high school students working to build awareness and support within the school district through the Don't Be Idle Campaign.

This campaign spans elementary to high schools and tries to make parents aware of the harmful effects of idling their engines on the environment and on their wallets. By eliminating five minutes of idling everyday, the average car can save $40 of gas in a year, and in fact it is more fuel efficient and better for the car to turn off the engine if it is going to be idling for longer than 10 seconds. The Green Teens have been gathering support for this project throughout the year, and kicked off the campaign (last) week with the support of students on both sides of the lake.

To keep the momentum going, the campaign depends on the continued support of the greater community. We ask all the drivers of Lake Oswego to lend their support by not idling their cars. Together we truly can make a difference.

The Green Teens

Jacob Shimkus

Emily Carlson

Sierra Sweigert

Lake Oswego

Helmses should be thanked for efforts

To the Editor:

We should thank Marilyn and Wally Helms for taking the initiative to contact the Oregon Government Ethics Commission regarding our mayor-elect's behavior while serving on our city council.

If the commission does in fact find that Jack Hoffman conducted himself in a questionable manner, we as good citizens will need to take the appropriate action by demanding representation that is not above the law. I, for one, am fed up with those politicians who put their self interests before their community.

The most likely place to stop this arrogance is at the grass roots level in city hall.

Dave and Kathy Sengenberger

Lake Oswego

Assistance to youth made a difference

To the Editor:

We are blessed and thankful to be part of the Lake Oswego community.

Seven months ago, AJ Frank experienced the kind of tragedy few can imagine. A fire destroyed his home in First Addition. His mother, Carol Frank, was killed in the fire. AJ survived by jumping from his second story bedroom window. AJ lost his mother and all of his belongings. His only surviving family was his father, Jeff, and at the time, Jeff was living miles away in Vancouver, with little money and under strict work and travel restrictions.

The situation for AJ could have been catastrophic had it not been for the outpouring of help and support from the Lake Oswego community.

The school administration, LOHS and Lakeridge families, the football group and the community at large assisted AJ in countless ways: Donating clothes and necessities; arranging the funeral; finding temporary housing and an apartment in Lake Oswego so AJ could stay here with his father; donating and paying for housewares and furniture; paying for Young Life camp; paying for football fees; subsidizing rent. The list goes on and on. Through the help of all of you, AJ and Jeff survived the first seven months and continue to rebuild their life together. Without your help it might have looked very different for them today.

AJ and Jeff would like to take this opportunity to thank the community for the great support it provided. They wish you health and happiness in the upcoming holiday season.

Members of the AJ Frank Fund Committee include:

Steve Coury - LOHS Varsity Football Coach; Cindy Douglas -AJ Frank Fund Treasurer; Shawn Engelberg - Laker Club Past President

Donations to the AJ Frank Fund can be made at any Washington Mutual Bank.

Shawn Engelberg

Lake Oswego

Support efforts to bring in USS Ranger

To the Editor:

I support the re-location of the USS Ranger (CV-61) to the Portland area, because bringing this aircraft carrier to Oregon has economic, emergency preparedness, cultural, and educational benefits that are extremely important to our state and not just to Portland.

I also feel that the maximum benefits that the Ranger can bring to Oregon is to have the vessel berthed in Portland on the Willamette River. I do not believe that the Port of Portland (a state agency) or the city of Portland have seriously considered the benefits and economic merits of this project. If you are unfamiliar with what is being proposed, I would suggest that you take a look at the USS Ranger CV61 Web site www.ussranger.org or www.ussrangercv61.org.

Considering the current financial status of our state and local economy, our elected officials need to get behind this proposal. It makes good economic sense.

Michael Wilson

Milwaukie

Auto bail out equals 'corporate welfare'

To the Editor:

As predicted, our government has decided to bail out the U.S. auto industry using taxpayer funds.

'Bail out' is the correct terminology to use in this set of circumstances. A bridge loan is a financial instrument wherein the lender has a reasonable expectation of being repaid. Taxpayers should not be operating under any such delusion. Surprising that the greatest stain on this president may come in the final days as tax funds are used to socialize corporate America.

The proposed plan is not so much a bail out of U.S. auto executives or even a bail out of automotive workers; it is a bail out of the AUW union. The vast majority of elected representatives voting for the bail out owe a great deal of their political capital to unions. The union has driven the financial viability of the U.S. auto industry through the factory floor.

In 2007, General Motors and Toyota manufactured approximately the same numbers of automobiles globally. During this same period, GM reported a loss of $38 billion and TM reported a gain of $17 billion.

Clearly, the U.S. taxpayer cannot continue to subsidize the U.S. auto industry. This is little more than corporate welfare being purchased with political favors on the backs of the U.S. taxpayer. Congress and the UAW (union) should allow the U.S. automakers a dignified death.

Noel R. Wolfe

Lake Oswego