Lake Oswego letters

To the Editor:

We are the family of the 16-year-old boy that was injured due to a fall on the ice last Tuesday. He is going to recover fully and actually came home on Thursday after a scary two days in the emergency room and ICU of Emanuel hospital. I am writing to acknowledge the people that did such an outstanding job in aiding Chris in his time of need.

First, the friends that were with him who immediately contacted a parent and called 911; the parents that took charge at the scene until help could arrive; and then foremost the expertise of the LO fire department personnel first responders who were able to stabilize him and get him off to Emanuel hospital via Life Flight. Without doubt the Life Flight, emergency room and ICU staff did an outstanding job of diagnosing and treating Chris' injury.

Finally, the outpouring of support and aid by all of our family friends and Chris' many friends and teammates is truly a gift to be cherished. Thanks to all of you, Chris will be back on the soccer pitch and basketball court before you know it.

Bill, Julie, Chris and Erica Schroeder

Lake Oswego

Give garbage collectors a break

To the Editor:

I was really surprised and a bit dismayed to read the letters condemning Allied Waste for not picking up the trash during the 'arctic blast.' The letters were so much about individuals and so little about the safety of the community.

I am under the impression that most Lake Oswego residents are well educated, smart and clever. I don't understand why they cannot figure how to collect and store several weeks of trash without turning their house into a garbage dump.

We've lived in this amazing community since 1969 and I don't ever remember Allied (formally Rossman) providing less than excellent service. Some years ago, my wife had an opportunity to ride along with the driver of a Rossman garbage truck (the experience was related to a class project when she was in graduate school). She had nothing but high regard for the workers, their attention to safety and the amount of hard physical labor the job required.

Try spending a day in the shoes (and truck) of a garbage collector then see if you complain about not getting your trash picked up for a week or two. Perhaps the driver can give you some tips on what to do with your trash when he or she cannot pick it up for whatever reason.

Bill Showell

Lake Oswego

Christmas trees are a key product

To the Editor:

Once again it's the Christmas season and many of you have probably noticed the various sites around Lake Oswego where Christmas trees are for sale.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently ranked Oregon No. 1 in the U.S. for the production of Christmas trees. The National Agricultural Statistics Service, also showed Oregon heading the nation in the production of Christmas trees with a report of 7.05 million Christmas trees produced in 2007.

Carolyne R. Jones

Lake Oswego

A special thank you for Bob Barman

To the Editor:

This time of year many people donate their time and money to good causes.

However, there is one member of our community who deserves a special thank you. While many of us were home with our families enjoying the last snow day before the holiday break, or trying to get to work on Friday, Dec. 19, Bob Barman was waiting outside for Costco to open. Mr. Barman was on a special mission. His mission was to make sure needy families of Waluga Junior High received something special this holiday season. Mr. Barman was running errands, picking up donations and delivering them to Jennifer Schiele, principal of Waluga Junior High for distribution.

Lake Oswego is a special place to live because of people like Bob Barman.

Thank you, Mr. Barman.

Trina Soder

Lake Oswego

WEB woes vs. the school district cuts

To the Editor:

As (Lake Oswego School) Superintendent Bill Korach calls for the school board to prepare for a $1 million cut to staffing costs in next year's Lake Oswego schools budget, the city of Lake Oswego continues to fritter away more than $1 million a year to pay the interest on the Safeco loan and related property support costs.

While I realize the school district is a separate fiscal entity, it illustrates that the council's continued unwarranted commitment to retaining the Safeco/WEB property is misguided and wasteful. Since the property was acquired in 2006, the city has spent more than $3 million on WEB. If this were still in the city's treasury, perhaps the city could find a way of contributing to the school district, perhaps through the School District Foundation.

Short of that, surely our new mayor and councilors would rather align themselves with a future Lake Oswego School District bond measure than a measure related to financing the retention and development of the Safeco property. In these economic times, only a spendthrift would expect both to pass.

As each passing month goes by, we spend more than $100,000 on WEB without knowing what WEB will be used for. Not only does this drain make our city weaker, but I believe it will also affect the quality of our schools in the longer term and, in the end, our children's education. Let us hope the new council will begin to realize this and can quickly bring WEB to a deserved end.

Gordon Umaki

Lake Oswego

Consider supporting charities directly

To the Editor:

Bill MacKenzie's response (in the Dec. 18 Lake Oswego Review) to my recent letter on 'efficient giving' indicated he wanted to 'set the record straight' (about the United Way). He further states that my letter contained 'a number of inaccuracies' - yet he fails to identify to a single one. Instead, he uses the English language skills you would expect of the communication manager of Intel Corporate Affairs (as he identifies himself) to attempt to obscure the important facts about United Way.

Mr. MacKenzie states that 'No overhead fees are deducted from any donation made to United Way.' That may be true on a technicality, but the very Web site he suggests you visit ( ) clearly shows that in 2006 only 83.8 percent of money given to United Way in Portland were 'dollars returned to the community' (went to the charities). The other 16.2 percent (almost $3 million) paid United Way expenses. The results for 2007 were about the same.

Mr. MacKenzie also points out the Charity Navigator gives United Way four stars. That would be excellent if the rating was for a charity and not a 'middle man.' In the case of United Way, their deductions have to be added to those of the ultimate charities before figuring out how much money actually gets to those in need.

I understand that Mr. MacKenzie may 'have a dog in the fight' in that he notes that Intel supports the United Way. Fine, but I stand by my position of 'efficient giving' and strongly suggest people take the few extra minutes to write the checks directly to the charities of their choice. That way, the charities will get 100 percent of the money intended to do good.

Dave Luck

Lake Oswego

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