Sen. Olsen needs to revise stance on guns too; What are Gladstone's revitalization priorities?

Sen. Olsen needs to revise stance on guns too

In responding to Gary Duell's excellent opinion piece last week about Sen. Alan Olsen, I join him and all the others who have written in or formed similar opinions about our state senator.

Surely Senator Olsen's memory is faulty or he has succumbed to the lack of veracity emanating from the administration in D.C.

Anyone can check his negative votes in Salem against protecting our environment, whether its the air we breathe, the water we drink or programs that could produce clean energy jobs for Oregonians. His votes refute his public declarations.

On another note, I have written to him about his stand on gun control. With too many shootings of our youth in schools, shoppers in our malls, students in our colleges and slaughter on our streets, he refuses to address the issue of any gun control whatsoever. When asked about his position, his office states words to this effect: he does not believe in limiting guns, ammunition or the rounds one may carry.

Now I know those parents, spouses, siblings and others suffering the heartbreak of losing loved ones to gun tragedies are solaced by this admission.

I believe most people are appalled by the lack of effort by those who represent us; they seem to be more responsive to the moneyed interests like the NRA than the average citizen they are supposed to represent.

I don't suppose much will be done, and more shootings will occur until those who supposedly represent their constituents lose someone dear to them through this needless public savagery. To date in our country it's taken place in our houses of worship, our schools, our colleges, our entertainment centers. The only solution our politicians have pushed for is to arm everyone; i.e. "the only defense from a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." What a stupid retort to a malignancy affecting this country.

If you feel as I do, please send your letters to Senator Olsen. If you feel his thinking on this gun issue is the right one, I hope you never have future regrets.

Jim Pentheny


What are city's revitalization priorities?

Until recently, the impacts of population growth and increased density have bypassed Gladstone. For those hoping to see change and revitalization, the future is finally here. Redeveloping the city's aging downtown is not a controversial idea, but with it come trade-offs that should not be ignored.

Increasing viability, density and property tax revenue are important to all suburban cities. Most citizens are willing to live with higher density, but are 40-foot-high buildings a good fit on Portland Avenue? Will we have delivery trucks blocking streets because there is no room for them? Will businesses suffer from a lack of parking? How will the neighbors feel about lines of cars parked in front of their residences?

I believe that an excessive focus on meeting Metro's vision and grant requirements will come at a big cost. Will Gladstone experience the same out-of-scale redevelopment that is occuring elsewhere, or will Gladstone chart a more moderate course?

The proposed Downtown Revitalization Plan includes many good aspects, but fails to address some of the same inadequacies missing in the new Transportation System Plan. We have more work to do before approving a final vision of our future. During last month's meeting, several Planning Commission members and numerous citizens expressed deep concerns regarding the plan's concept for traffic and parking. The public hearing was carried over until this month. The Planning Commisssion will soon make a recommendation to the City Council. Please share your opinion by speaking on Tuesday, or by submitting an email prior to the hearing.

The meeting is at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 16, at City Hall, and the agenda is posted on the city of Gladstone's website. I encourage citizens to attend, even if you do not intend to speak.

Growth is a double-edged sword. It comes with both positive and negative impacts. Ignoring the negatives isn't working elsewhere, and it won't work in Gladstone.

Les Poole

Gladstone Planning Commission member

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