Letters: Beware fire protection proposals
As one of many Oregonians who loves to spend time on our public lands, I'm concerned about the fear-based rhetoric generated by the media and spread by lawmakers regarding this summer's forest fires.
Science tells us that a landscape will regenerate from fire on its own, and any attempt to speed that process or interfere with the natural biology will impede progress and waste resources.
What instead represents the real threat to our National Scenic Areas and forests are the various proposals that cite fire to dramatically increase clearcut logging on our public lands.
Two active pieces of legislation would do just that. The so-called "Resilient Federal Forests Act" (HR 2936) seeks to gut our bedrock environmental laws and repeal protections for wilderness areas, making way for a spike in timber extraction from Oregon's public forests.
This radical piece of legislation will be up for a vote on the House floor in the coming weeks.
Our own Rep. Greg Walden, Oregon-District 2, is co-sponsor of this bill and has also recently introduced his own proposal, HR 3715 (audaciously named the "Scenic Columbia Gorge Restoration Act"), which would suspend all environmental laws with explicit intent to allow clearcut logging in the Columbia Gorge and other National Scenic Areas.
As owners and stewards of our public lands, we cannot be distracted by the embarrassing shenanigans in the White House and let opportunistic lawmakers undo years of progress on environmental policies while our attention is elsewhere. Our forests are depending on us!
We don't need more storage facilities
Well, South Tabor Neighborhood Association, you have the same problem as other neighborhoods with a self-storage facility being built by a company out of state.
They are building several in the Portland area. I live in the Oak Grove area and we have been fighting against one being built in our neighborhood. Same size. Will stick out like a sore thumb in our neighborhood, too.
It is being built in a bad traffic location, which is going to cause a problem. Too tall. Too big. Homeless people like to use self-storage facilities for their items or they live in them.
Oak Grove has other storage facilities in the neighborhood already. But as long as they meet the zoning laws, they can't be told they can't build in the location they want.
The neighborhood has no say about it. The Oak Grove Community Council, same as a neighborhood association in a city but in the county (CPO), appealed it and got nowhere.
If people have so much stuff they require storage units, then they need to live in bigger houses/rentals or get rid of some of their stuff. All their belongings and vehicles of every type and size should all fit within or on their property, period.
Self-storage facilities should be only for short-term temporary storage as one is going through some kind of transition, e.g., moving or removing items from a residence after someone has recently died.