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Editorial: Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down

Thumbs Up

Help for homeless

More than 50 volunteers have given up their comfortable beds on a regular basis to do night watch at the Warming Place, the homeless shelter in The Dalles that’s been continuously open since Dec. 4.

Meeting needs

Google donated a $140,000 grant for The Dalles Middle School to buy a device for every single student, helping to bridge the digital divide.

Stand out

Mid-Columbia Economic Development District’s executive director, Amanda Hoey, is one of only 32 Americans selected to be part of the German Marshall Fund program, a global networking opportunity that will send her to Europe for six weeks for a series of meetings with regional leaders.

Rapid response

The Oregon Department of Transportation rapidly repaired the slew of potholes that developed on The Dalles Bridge following harsh winter conditions.

Safety zone

The Dalles-based Youth Employment Shelter, which opened just last August, has created a safe place for children and teens with troubled home lives to go for help.

Kudos also to the Oregon Community Foundation for providing a $25,000 grant to the fledgling shelter to help cover staffing costs and services.

Support for military

The Mid-Columbia Veterans Memorial Committee and American Legion Post 19 has been working together to create a military museum to raise public awareness about service and sacrifice.

Public service

Rep. John Huffman is working at the legislative level to restore $10 million in general fund dollars that were taken away from veteran services in Gov. Kate Brown’s proposed 2017-19 budget.

He predicted the cut after the passage of Measure 96, which diverted 1 percent of lottery revenue to supplement veterans’ services, and said he would fight any attempt by the state to reduce its responsibility to those who have served.

Thanks also go to Huffman for working to stop human trafficking, a problem even in rural areas of the nation.

Peaceful assembly

People who marched in The Dalles in support of women’s reproductive rights, gay marriage and other social justice concerns carried signs and voiced their concerns in a manner respectful of others.

Perseverance pays

The Gorge Youth Center reported $230,000 in contributions for a project to establish a community center that will be a place for youth and families to hang out. By unrelenting determination, Joe Martin, the driving force behind the plans, is slowly moving the project forward and keeping it in the public eye.

Honoring outreach

The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce organized a banquet that honored citizens in several categories who had worked hard to give back to the community. This annual event highlights the value of civic engagement and rewards those who go above and beyond the call to help others.

Thumbs down

Unfunded mandates

Gov. Kate Brown did not include funding for grants to help local jurisdictions meet statewide land-use planning requirements in her 2017-19 budget.

Too much winter!

Two thumbs down to the crazy, unending icy cold and snowy weather that continues into the weekend after seven long weeks. We’ve all had enough!


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