The optimism accompanying a brand-new year too often proves misplaced. But before 2013 becomes tarnished by reality, let’s dream about what could be — as opposed to what will be. Here are just a few of our wishes for Washington County and the Portland area as they enter this still very young year:

  • For Washington County workers: that Nike fully justifies the support it received from the Oregon Legislature by creating more than 500 new jobs, preferably near Beaverton.

  • For Washington County officials: the long-overdue $12 million in income tax revenue promised by the state as part of the Gain Share program — for which the county waived $83 million in property taxes to attract new jobs.

  • For the Beaverton School District: state leaders who truly stand up to fund public education and community support of a possible levy to keep our quality educators in the classroom. Also, support from principals and the district to allow teachers to return to their subject and grade levels, where they are most qualified.

  • For Intel, which still actually manufactures things in Oregon, its own special session in Salem.

  • Speaking of the Legislature: Is it too much to hope lawmakers can continue the practical, bipartisan approach they demonstrated in the 2011-12 sessions?

  • For baseball fans in Beaverton, Vancouver and Milwaukie : an all-day TriMet pass so they can watch Single A ball in Hillsboro, which snagged the team they tried to land.

  • For everyday bus and train riders: an end to posturing by TriMet and the transit union. Let’s get down to business and negotiate a contract that helps control the agency’s budget problems while still providing employees with decent wages and benefits.

  • Meanwhile, let’s hope Metro and its supporters wake up to the fact its multi-modal transportation plans aren’t working equally well everywhere in the region. Downtown Portland is benefiting from the emphasis on mass transit far more than Washington and Clackamas counties, which have growing congestion problems that need to be honestly addressed.

  • We all should hope the gun debate quickly focuses on practical solutions that include reasonable, enforceable restrictions on high-capacity firearms and effective intervention for those with mental problems.

  • We encourage more people to attend live cultural events to support an ailing arts industry.

  • For Portland Community College: the right person to fill the large void being left by departing PCC President Preston Pulliams — and that means not only someone with the skills to run the state’s largest institution of higher learning, but also a leader like Pulliams who understands our community and is willing to commit for the long term.

  • Here’s wishing for success as health-care providers adjust to monumental changes on the way for the local, state and national medical system.

  • Along those lines, let’s hope everybody tries to do 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise — something as simple as walking — and drinks plenty of water each day in 2013. After all, that’s the best health-care plan there is.

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