Oregon is in a drought situation due to record low rainfall and snow pack levels, which will greatly increase the potential for catastrophic wildfires and a huge firefighting bill for taxpayers. Fire educators believe it could be the driest summer that the Northwest has seen for 25 years. Last year, the Oregon Department of Forestry’s gross large-fire costs were $75.6 million and the net cost was $47.6 million.
If a massive amount of money is available for spending, at a minimum there will be waste, perhaps fraud and maybe theft. The larger the amount of money, the bigger the magnet. We’ve seen that in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars.
Should Oregon raise the minimum wage?
The following editorial appeared last week in the East Oregonian regarding a proposed oil refinery on the West Coast: Does it make sense to build a new oil refinery on the banks of the Columbia River in Longview, Wash., especially one that will be supplied with crude oil via rail? No, but this answer is not quite so clear cut as environmental advocates make it seem. Riverside Energy Inc. indicates it is looking into several locations in Oregon and Washington for a new West Coast refinery that would turn crude oil — likely from the Bakken field of North Dakota and Alberta — into gasoline and other products. The company says it is far from firmly settled on Longview, though its very name — Riverside — suggests that a facility based on Columbia River transportation and water may be a fundamental aspect of its business plan.
Requiring background checks for private purchases of guns in Oregon makes sense.
It has been bewildering to watch The Dalles Mayor Steve Lawrence attempt to wring measurable tourism outcomes from the work plan presented the last two years by The Dalles Area Chamber of Commerce.
In true American style, Easter is not only Christianity’s most important holiday but, in the secular realm, a day when an iconic hare leaves baskets of candy for children and decorated eggs are hunted.
I have never worked for a union shop, but several members of my family have, both in the public sector, which includes the most prominent unions today, and the private sector, where union membership, representing only 7 percent of America's workforce, is at its lowest level since the 1930s. In the private sector, it's hard to sympathize with, for example, the dock workers currently battling shipping companies at the Port of Portland.
The following editorial appeared in the Coos Bay World on March 19 regarding Obamacare benefits: We wonder if opponents to the Affordable Care Act — Obamacare — saw this one coming.
The questions being asked regarding former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton use of a personal email account for government business are not new.
Don’t hide records behind high costs
The battle over a current public health district employee’s decision to paint his future office at the Wasco County Planning Department has become as ugly as the faux wood paneling he covered up.
Crosstalk: Global warming: Real or a power grab?
What are the biggest differences between Oregon and Washington? They pump their own gas, and we don’t? They have a sales tax and we don’t? They have NFL and Major League franchises and we don’t? Yes, yes and yes. There is another significant distinction, which is glaring in the wake of the Cover Oregon fiasco and the departure of Gov. John Kitzhaber.
GOP failing in its bid to curb Obama