Letters to the editor
Volunteer for your city by voting yes on levy
If you care about your community I urge you to vote yes on 26-157, the fire, police and parks levy on the May ballot.
If this doesnt pass, the city of Gresham will lose 20 police officers, three of the eight parks staff. In addition, two fire stations will close.
These funds will enable the city to maintain the services it now has, not hire new people or buy new equipment. Also the money will be placed in a dedicated fund to be used only for police, fire and parks services.
You may not be able to volunteer to help in your community, but this is your opportunity to make a positive difference.
To volunteer for your city all you have to do is fill out your ballot from the comfort of your home by marking "yes" on 26-157 and send it in.
Levy is an investment for our city's future
Gresham has been my home since 1971. I have seen our city grow, mature and encounter "big city" issues. I am proud to call Gresham my home, and I believe this is the time for us to accept responsibility to adequately fund the services we value that make Gresham so very special.
We need to fight gang violence, ensure prompt police and fire response times, and take care of our parks and trails that are enjoyed by so very many, including our children and four-legged friends.
As an active volunteer serving the Public Safety Council Citizen Advisory Committee and as a Citizen Volunteer in Policing, I have seen first-hand how lean both our fire and police departments are.
I have never worked with a more dedicated group of people in my life. They have earned our support.
As a member of the Gresham Area Chamber of Commerce and as a retired Certified Public Accountant, I know the importance of investing for our future.
Now is that time. This levy is that investment.
Fiscal control is built into Measure 26-157, of which 95 percent of levy revenue will be dedicated to public safety. Citizen volunteers are responsible for oversight. After five years, voters would have the option to renew the levy or it would expire.
Gresham is our city. We need to support those who protect us and our way of life.
Please join me as I vote yes for Measure 26-157. Ballots will arrive during the first week of May. Election day is Tuesday, May 20.
Renewable fuel standard is misguided policy
Thank you for printing the guest opinion by Bess Wills ("Renewable fuels standard will hurt consumers," April 8, Opinion page.)
Wills did an excellent job of enlightening us to the detrimental effects of ethanol E10, and the potential for further damage to be flung on the American consumer with the advent of E15.
I don't understand why our legislators and other leaders are forcing this option upon us, much to the detriment of our cars and other fuel consuming equipment used by homeowners and small businesses.
I have always wondered how much fuel is consumed just to create the products be it corn, sugarcane or whatever that are used to produce these renewable fuels.
It not only uses fuel to plant and harvest, but some type of energy is used to convert the harvested product into fuel.
With the advent of a coming food shortage crisis, I would venture to say that our country would be better off raising food, than trying to extend our fuel resources with renewable fuel that is harmful to gasoline engines, fuel lines and other components in a internal combustion engine.
Hopefully, with information that is being shared by people like Bess Wills, plus automobile manufacturers like Ford and GM, the Environmental Protection Agency will relax its unwise regulations, and leave the regulations where they are; or better yet, rescind the Renewable Fuel Standard, and get the government out of the business of forcing its expensive, detrimental policies on the American public.
Thank you for publishing articles like this. They certainly provide us with more truthful information than our government seems to give us.
No-spin candidate listens to the people
For Position 5 on the Clackamas County Board of Commissioners, I am supporting a man who has for years demonstrated the type of leadership I appreciate and hope for every time I mark my ballot.
I am supporting Steve Bates because of my close observation of the honesty and sincerity of his leadership during the past four years while I was a reporter for newspapers in the Boring area of Clackamas County.
Bates style of leadership gives the power to the people he represents. At meetings and visits to his home office, I was impressed with his exhaustive research on current topics. He listens to peoples views, says what hes thinking and doesnt put political spin on anything.
Bates is an extremely organized person who would be an excellent addition to the commission. He would bring added integrity to a board that has not always enjoyed the esteem and respect of local residents.
He also would keep the board on task, add new ideas and increase its collective knowledge with his incessant research into agenda topics.
This position is likely to be decided in the primary, so please vote in May for Steve Bates for Commissioner No. 5. Visit friendsofstevebates.com. for information.
Levy passage critical to Gresham's future
City Council President Lori Stegmann and state Rep. Greg Matthews recently visited the Historic Southeast Neighborhood Association to discuss Gresham's public safety levy.
It was a real privilege to have them speak. They did a wonderful job of making the case for the passage of Measure 26-157. Their testimonials were moving, and the rationale for the tax levy very clear. I dont think there was a single skeptic at the end of the forum.
I think we are lucky that our City Council is doing an incredible job and we all deeply appreciate that. And the "report card" on the Fire Department speaks for itself how they are doing a superb job with limited resources. The Police Department does the same.
The limited duration of the levy and the volunteer oversight speak volumes about the respect our elected officials have for using taxpayer money wisely.
We all want Gresham to be as great as it can be. I am convinced that that can only be realized by passing Measure 25-157. I have a yard sign in my yard so all my neighbors know that I am supporting the levy.
I hope all Gresham residents will read up on the measure including the fact this is a replacement for the current monthly fee and join me in voting yes.
Preserve freedoms by approving levy
Among a few important foundations of Greshams government are the safety and security of its citizens.
With current funding levels our freedoms are at risk. Threats to our security are real both in terms of increased response times and a rise in criminal activity.
The threats to those serving us are increasing as well. Firefighters must have the numbers needed to back each other up at fires and hazardous materials spills. As first responders in medical situations, they need to be stationed close to get on scene quickly. If we have to close a fire station due to a lack of funding, some will see increased response times. A few will see substantial response time increases.
Police officers arriving on scene must have backup in some cases for their own safety.
Our citys approach to gang activity is multi-level. Forums are held for multi-unit apartment owners and managers. We contribute to a gang task force, and our police respond as needed when things go wrong.
While its not certain how these critical functions might be affected by a reduction in funding, a reduction would likely force some changes. Gang activities inhibit our freedoms.
To maintain our current levels the public safety measure needs to pass. The enforcement and suppression elements will become too weak if we dont strengthen them.
As we move forward, our future will be less reactive and more proactive if our foundations are strengthened when needed. Now is that time. Join my wife and I in voting to preserve our freedoms.