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Letters to the editor

Gas dealers misled readers In a recent advertisement in the News-Times, the gasoline dealers in Cornelius displayed very dishonest and deceptive information about the Cornelius Fuel Tax Measure 34-201. The ad misleads voters!

The city receives 25 percent of the revenue listed and uses it to pay for police and fire services. The rest goes to schools and other government bodies to pay for services they provide. Are the gas station owners suggesting we cut safety services to pay for streets? This is important to know because the gas dealers want you to believe they are suffering, citing inaccurate numbers about sales drops. City fuel tax revenue collections tell another story. The dealers say they are down 50 percent, yet the tax collections show they're only 7 percent down — which is consistent with the drop in driving numbers cited by Metro, our regional government. People are driving less, so naturally, gasoline dealers have lower sales numbers. The Cornelius Fuel Tax was approved by a majority of voters in 2010. The fuel tax replaced the local street light fee of $2.25 and provides additional money to improve our streets and community.

Over 40,000 cars a day drive through Cornelius, while we have only 11,800-plus residents. This means that residents from other cities help pay for the street lights and road repairs they use and relieve Cornelius citizens.

The way the fuel tax is set up is a real bargain for residents and local businesses who are now relieved of having to pay for street lights. My family pays less with the fuel tax (about $1.84 per month) and receives more services. Please vote “no” on ballot measure 34-201 and keep the fuel tax to pay for our streets and street lighting.

Jef Dalin

Mayor of Cornelius

New website explains fuel tax

As you may or may not know, there is an initiative for the current election dealing with the Cornelius Fuel Tax. This tax is 2 cents per gallon of fuel. The income from this has allowed the city to discontinue collecting a monthly streetlight fee and has allowed the city to start making some much needed improvements. Please consider carefully how this will affect you and the city. 

I have just published a website (sos97113.com) that contains pictures of some of the work completed using the fuel tax and more information about the history of the fuel tax as well as other fees in Cornelius.  Please use this website if you have any questions. Your feedback is appreciated.

Brad Coffey

Cornelius

Gas tax foe lives out of town

For those of you that don’t know, Bob Barman is the person behind the initiative to repeal the 2 cent per gallon gas tax. He also owns the Chevron Station on Baseline and wants this tax repealed, so he can take the tax money our citizens pay and put it in his own pocket.

This voter-approved tax has helped our community dramatically. All of that money stays in Cornelius, for street improvements. The $2.25 per month street lighting fee, which every household used to pay, was eliminated. 

This has been a great deal for Cornelius. In fact, 80 cents out of every dollar raised by the gas tax is paid by non-residents just passing through, but all of the money stays in Cornelius.

Bob doesn’t live in Cornelius and will not have to live with the impacts if the gas tax is repealed. All Bob wants is more money, but instead of working on improving his business, he finds it easier to spend money repealing our law so he can keep our tax money for himself.

If the people of Cornelius have to live with street light fees and unrepaired streets, that’s OK with Bob. After all, he doesn’t have to live with those things.

I would rather Bob focus on fixing  problems in his own community and respect that the citizens of Cornelius will decide what’s best for us. 

It’s not your town, Bob. You make money here and then go back to Lake Oswego and your $1.9 million home to spend it.

Good for you, but please remember you are a guest here, and as a guest, it’s bad form to go into someone’s home and start rearranging the furniture.

Please vote against measure 34-201.

Warren H. Smith

Cornelius

 

Five reasons to support Unger

A CPA "working with small business all the time" means doing their tax returns, not championing them. Ben Unger is a small businessman, knows their problems and how to help.

And, contrary to how Ms. Eyre paints it, Ben:

1. Is a defender of jobs, and also understands the inter-dependence of our agriculture, ag-dependent and high-tech jobs in Washington County. Unfortunately, Ms Eyre stated in a recent Cornelius public forum that even more of our county farmland should be given over to urbanization.

2. Knows our schools and affordable higher ed tuition are vital for our economy and a B.S.-proof electorate. When Rep. Eyre voted against Oregon's school budget bill HB 5552, she attacked Ben Unger for pointing it out, rather than explaining her vote.

3. Has the priorities that would avoid burdensome and unfair taxes. He does not hate his grandmother or mine. His tax "sin" turned out to be supporting a levy for (shh!) Portland Public Schools.

4. Ben has the confidence of an impressive number of supporters in business, education, farming, public service and among energetic, hopeful young people.

The latest in a steady stream of misleading attack mailers says Ben received financial support from public employees.

Perhaps these unnamed bad guys (?) were our firefighters, police or teachers unions who support Unger. I would trust them far more than the nameless, big, out-of-state corporations and bankers that fund much of Eyre’s misleading campaign.

5. Ben has insight, passion for a good future for Oregon and us in his home county. Plus a great ability to get good work done — and to do it with integrity. All are essential pieces of my support for Ben Unger.

Parks Adams

Forest Grove

Unger's background is impressive

This is a letter in support of Ben Unger. I did not know him until several weeks ago when I began volunteering for him. Since then, I have been very impressed by his character and convictions. Before we left to canvass for him three weeks ago, Ben introduced himself and spoke to us about his background and what is important to him.

He said he grew up on a nearby farm and that he learned two important things from growing up on a farm. He said he learned how to work hard and he learned to finish the job you start.

I knew what he is talking about, having spent many summers working on farms as a kid growing up in Wisconsin. Farmers here are the same as farmers in Wisconsin: same work ethic, same integrity, same great people.

Ben talked about what really motivated him to run for public office: education. He said he owes everything to the great education he got here in the public schools. He feels our public schools have been weakened and cut back on so that now the present generation just doesn't have the opportunities he had. He speaks about public education with real emotion. You can tell how strongly he feels about our public schools.

I am very impressed by his vision and his convictions. Ben is the best of a new generation of leaders coming of age. I am honored to support him.

Robert L. Seward

Forest Grove

Howard would make good councilor

The response from Aldie Howard regarding the editorial opinion by the News-Times "further" exemplifies the positive qualities that make him a superior candidate for the Forest Grove City Council.

In spite of the News-Times’ negative and unwarranted comments regarding the endorsement of [other council candidates], his intelligence, objectivity and perseverance would make him an asset to the Forest Grove City Council.

Daniel Klee

Forest Grove

City shouldn't have delayed gas vote

Two years ago I was a signer on a petition to repeal the 2-cent gas tax in Cornelius. I watched as the City of Cornelius stalled in processing the petitions so that it would not be on the ballot when we elected our governor two years ago. The city had other opportunities to put it on the ballot at no cost but chose to delay the election until the last legal day.

I believe the hundreds and hundreds of citizens who asked to have a vote were treated poorly. No matter how you feel on any issue the citizens are the deciders and the right to petition is or should be sacred and the city should not interfere with our right.

I urge everyone to vote yes on Measure 34-201 because the city has millions and millions of dollars sitting in its checking account and does not need this money to keep the roads repaired. The city gets lots of money just like Forest Grove and Hillsboro and they should use that money. Isn’t 52 cents in gas tax on every gallon enough?

Steve Codekas

Cornelius

Stop funding for abortions

Babies are created through an act of love. So why do we want to kill them? Hitler had Jews killed, but did that make it OK? Slavery was once allowed, but did that make it OK? We are human and at times need to practice self-control. Does it make it OK for someone to rob your house because they want something that will please them and not go to jail? Practice a little self-control. The baby wasn't at fault. Let's let our vote count and stop spending tens of millions of dollars for abortion in Mexico City or anywhere else.

We say it's against the law to harm turtle eggs in Florida. Killing a baby should be no different.

Barbara Hinton

Forest Grove

School district, city making bad decisions

Does anyone think that $43,879 per student to educate seven kids [at the former Gales Creek Elementary School building] is a good value? That's more than tuition at an upper echelon college. In reality the cost was much higher, since by the end of the year there were only four kids left at that school. By the end of the year, there were more employees there than kids.

Now, because of deferred maintenance (to pay PERS costs?), the roof costs three times as much to replace at the high school? It's a good thing Joseph Gale came in under budget; it's not like the taxpayers were going to get that money back anyway. Who's running this show? Between the district and the decisions made by the city council, no wonder people are leaving town. Wake up, Forest Grove!

Joe Aronhalt

Forest Grove

Loan program has debilitating interest rate

Sallie Mae bills itself as the largest loan-giver and support for students trying to afford a college education. But in my experience as a would-be co-signer, it wasted hours with phone connections to persons of a different culture who asked for spellings of “forest” and “grove.”

And, when the papers came to sign, they disclosed that the repayment rate was fixed at 11.75 percent. The total interest would be 1.7 times the original loan, yielding a cost for J’s $10,000 freshman year as $27,725.

Is Sallie Mae supported by our taxes? Who benefits from these extraordinary, debilitating charges?

MaryJane Nordgren

Forest Grove




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