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letters - July 14, 2011

What do you consider 'low-income?'

To the Editor,

In the article 'What's on the Horizon?'' a West Linn resident wrote, 'Any jobs created by Wal-Mart are created for others who do not live in West Linn, and who will commute to our city for the job and then leave each day back to their homes elsewhere. People in West Linn will not be the future employees of Wal-Mart. What would be even worse is to have a low-income group renting the apartments around the location - and who will have more than the expected (number of) people living in one apartment.'

I wonder what she considers 'low-income,' or is that just a convenient code term to emphasize the upper class white suburban nature of West Linn.

If she ventures out of her Hidden Springs enclave she may discover the West Linn Food Pantry is serving record numbers of residents, the grocery stores she patronizes are paying their employees Wal-Mart wages, the people pumping her gas are not undercover oil company executives and those workers doing the landscaping in her neighbor's yards did not need a visa to enter the city limits. Yes, she may find out she encounters the 'low-income' every day here in West Linn.

She also wrote, 'It will increase the crime rate due to individuals who are not from our area coming into West Linn for a 'bargain.' I don't see this connection at all. Just how many crimes are committed in West Linn by those who just happen to be here shopping - bargains or no bargains?

Although I am no fan of Wal-Mart, I do believe there are valid arguments pro and con regarding a site in West Linn. I just don't think a demonizing of those who are living on a low income is one of them.

Terry Solini

West Linn

(Editor's note: In this submission, Solini refers to the July 7 story 'What's on the horizon' that ran in the Tidings. The story discusses how Wal-Mart is rumored to be looking at new sites in West Linn and Lake Oswego. Read about the current Wal-Mart developments on page A1).

Hoping school

district gets language immersion

To the Editor,

I recently read that the Lake Oswego School District denied a language immersion program partly on the basis that their school board did not believe it would attract new students and their taxpayer parents.

I am brand new to the Portland area and now looking to buy a house specifically in the West Linn-Wilsonville School District because there is an interest in providing a language immersion option in that school district.

I hope the school board and city governments of West Linn-Wilsonville recognize that it is attracting a new tax-paying family in a recession/depression specifically because of their citizens' interest in an immersion program.

Imagine how many more tax payers West Linn-Wilsonville could attract with an actual, committed program.

Best regards,

Jennifer Philpott

Lake Oswego

I'm supporting The Language Academy Charter School

To the Editor:

I write this letter in support of The Language Academy Charter School. As a proud resident and parent in West Linn, I always seek out ideas that will benefit my community.

A strong community has a strong public school system, and West Linn-Wilsonville has wonderful schools that I am glad my children can attend. The Language Academy will be an innovative, high-quality addition to our school district, making it even more exceptional. It is easy to recognize the many opportunities for the whole community The Language Academy will offer through business partnerships, community collaboration and parental involvement.

It is exciting to see a primary school academically focus on foreign language and math in a K-8 setting but also prepare our children to become global citizens.

I urge the West Linn-Wilsonville School Board to approve the proposal before them and bring a new educational model to this community.

I encourage my fellow citizens of West Linn - both with and without children of school age - to attend the public hearing on July 18 at the Wilsonville High School forum to learn more about the benefits that The Language Academy will bring to our public school system and to lend your support.

Jenni Tan

West Linn

(Editor's note: Jenni Tan is West Linn City Council member, however, she submitted this as a private citizen not representing city council).