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Letters to the editor: Sept. 18

Warr-King is excellent public servant

The positions on the Gresham City Council are volunteer and unpaid, but Paul Warr-King approaches it with the seriousness of a professional; reading the mountains of reports and information that is required for each city council meeting, and attending to the details of the budget made easier by his years of financial management in banking.

Being easy to talk to, community members feel free to converse with Paul on city and neighborhood issues.

His years of international business have made him culturally aware — a good characteristic in a city with dozens of cultural and ethnic groups.

Paul engages citizens, listening attentively as they express their concerns. He has encouraged volunteerism to fill city needs in this time of dwindling resources where hard working city personnel are now doing two or three jobs and can use the help.

We are fortunate to have a councilor of Paul Warr-King’s scope and vision on Gresham City Council. His thorough and thoughtful approach continues to be needed.

Shirley Vandermosten

Gresham

Mayor’s signage breaks the rules

Is Mayor Steve Spinnett of Damascus above the law?

I want to direct my remarks to the good neighbors who live here in Damascus.

Since mid-August, my friends and I who live in Damascus have noticed Spinnett’s many campaign signs stretched out along Highway 212 and Sunnyside Road, as well as on 242nd and 222nd.

My wife and I observed his putting up signs in the midst of Damascus on Sunday, Aug. 18.

His signs are prolific; they stretch along Highway 212 for a distance of about 8 miles, far exceeding the borders of the city of Damascus.

We’ve counted and photographed more than 35 of his signs on various streets. There were no other candidate signs until the Labor Day weekend.

Also, his signs range from the usual lawn-sign size to 3 by 6 feet and even larger.

Now my concern is this: State, county and city ordinances regulate campaign signs. For example, they prohibit the posting of campaign signs more than 60 days before the election, which is on Nov 6. This means that putting up campaign signs two — even three weeks or more — before the permitted time he is in violation of the law and election ethics. He is engaged in unlawful behavior.

In addition, his signs are within the distance limitation of 60 feet (set by ODOT) from the centerline of a state highway (Highway 212).

Also, signs with moving parts (the mayor’s spinning wheels) are prohibited.

Finally, regulations forbid posting more than one campaign sign on the same property. In several places he has two signs. The worse violation has at least six signs on commercial property on Sunnyside Road.

Hence the Mayor has violated several ordinances.

Why is it that no other candidate — for city, county, state or federal office — posted any campaign signs prior to Sept 7?

Because the other local candidates chose to abide by the law.

By posting on his signs the names of Dan Phegley, Mel O’Brien, and Bill Wehr the mayor places them in violation of the law as well. We counted about 7-8 of these signs.

My questions to the mayor are these: If you thumb your nose at these state, county, and local ordinances, why should we think that you will abide by other laws? Why should we vote for you to head up our city as mayor?

If you are not willing to abide by such minor laws as those, why do you think that you deserve the support of the citizens of this community if you, with impunity, tear asunder state, county, and local regulations? Do you consider yourself above the law?

I have determined not to vote for all who have violated these regulations, including Pat Sheehan, whose big signs also came up before the permitted time (at least by Sept 3). I call upon the citizens of Damascus to do the same.

The mayor’s opponent in the mayoral race has chosen to abide by the law. She has a reputation in the community as being honest. We know her convictions by her actions.

I invite the mayor to change his mind, to apologize to Damascus and to do the ethical thing by taking down his signs now or after 60 days.

James De Young

Damascus




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