Estates’ Love Santa event successful

To the editor:

Friday, Nov. 15, The Estates Golf and Country Club had a charity event for Love Santa. More than 100 people were in attendance, Santa came and we filled two golf carts with gifts and food. Cascade Park helped to sponsor by providing cookies and hot chocolate. We had a good time, watching our Elvis impersonator (Ron Hopfer) perform for an hour, bringing back lots of memories. We also provided Love Santa with a $50 donation.

The evening was truly a success. Thank you.

Sharyn Cornett

Activities Director, The Estates

Belle Passi not too belle on Veterans Day

To the editor:

There was a lack of support, pride and patriotism at the Belle Passi Cemetery on 11.11.11 (Nov. 11 at 11 a.m.) 2013 Veterans Day.

About eight veterans in uniform plus no more than 10 other supporters and/or relatives of former soldiers attended the annual Veterans Day ceremony which took place at the cemetery mausoleum.

Moreover, missing in the small crowd were people of color. Considering that the Woodburn and surrounding communities have a significant number of Mexican American families, I personally was disappointed in their lack of participation.

Woodburn Mayor Kathy Figley’s speech was full of accolades, words of pride, empathy and historical significance. No leadership from the school system, city government employees, church leaders or other significant members of the “City of Unity” or similar jurisdictions were in attendance to hear her eloquent message. A missed learning and teaching opportunity for those in power!

Woodburn and Marion County need to stand back and see what bridges of cross cultural understanding, civic participation and appreciation are being built. People with south of the border roots or other places need to match their activism, enthusiasm and the “yes we can/si se puede” attitude with more civic and community participation across ALL established institutions, organizations and agencies.

It was sad to see an empty Downtown Plaza, palm trees, perfect weather and a natural turf empty at high noon, where the community could have assembled to thank and praise our former soldiers who to this day suffer the effects of war. One could argue that we are here because veterans made it possible for us to enjoy our city, county, state and nation along with our rights and privileges.

Where was the chamber of commerce? Where were the local agencies? Where were the city employees? A perfect setting for a school field trip; where were the students and staff? Where were you?

In the future, let’s make Belle Passi live up to its name, where “Belle” is indeed beautiful, with more participation by all!

Miguel A. Salinas

West Linn

Aurora Fire grateful to voters

To the editor:

We would like to thank voters for supporting the Aurora Fire District #63 Operating Levy 24-352 at the election on Nov. 5.

We will continue our work to provide high quality life safety and fire services to the residents of our 64-square-mile district. We look forward to a bright future of service to our growing community.

Chuck Cox, President, District 63 Firefighter’s Association

Marc Anderson, Board President, Aurora Fire District

Union workers should be upset

To the editor:

Are the members of AFSCME Local 642 in Woodburn a happy group? Only they know. But for myself I do not think they are and I can understand why. The city of Woodburn has a right to outsource jobs even if they are currently filled by union workers. Of course with that right outsource there are certain procedures that must be followed by the city and the union.

The city of Woodburn has been very aggressive in offering out “request for proposal” (RFP) which really means the city is looking for someone to do a particular job cheaper than what the cost is today with union help. The first RFP offered out was for replacing custodial and maintenance union workers. The workers kept their jobs with benefits except for a horrible 40 percent cut in hourly wages to approximately $11.48. Not much money to live on and if one has a family, almost impossible.

I believe the next RFP was for independent contractors to do all of the electrical work for the city. The next RFP was for independent contractors to do all of the maintenance functions for the transit system.

At the present time, I do not know how many union workers (if any) lost their jobs doing electrical work citywide or maintenance work for the transit system. A good question for the union members and the taxpayers of Woodburn wound be, how many management workers received a wage cut?

Think about it: A union worker making around $20 to $30 an hour is cut in wages but those making $45 to $65 an hour are not cut. If I was a union employee I would be very upset but we have the city council as the last hope to keep our jobs and current wages. Guess again.

The city council did nothing — I repeat, nothing — to spread the wage reductions across the board for “every” employee, union or management.

In my opinion, we have an impotent city council and the only problem the city administrator has with the city council puppets is changing their strings when needed.

Terry L. Will


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