Pass NORCOR bill

To the editor,

With the wide partisan division we see in the news every day at the state and federal government level, it is heartening that two Oregon state representatives in the Columbia Gorge—Representative Anna Williams, a Democrat, and Representative Daniel Bonham, a Republican—are sponsoring House Bill 4121 during the current Oregon legislative session. This bill prohibits Northern Oregon Regional Corrections Facility (NORCOR) from pursuing any new contracts with federal ICE officials to detain immigrants. It would also stabilize the operations and budget for NORCOR, which has been needed for a long time.

Thank you to representatives Bonham and Williams for your bipartisan efforts on behalf of immigrants, and for your leadership in charting a course for a viable operation of our regional jail focusing on region’s needs, not on the needs of the federal government.

Let’s get this HB4121 bill passed.

Michael Stevens

Mosier, Oregon

Government of the few

 To the editor,

We’ve been bombarded by a constant litany about the corruption in Ukraine by the Oligarcy. I was curious about the definition of this type of government. The dictionary shows this to be a form of government in which all power is vested in a few persons or in a dominant class or clique; “government by the few.” A state or organizations so ruled.

Words related to “oligarchy” include domination, monocracy, high-handedness, unreasonableness, coercion, authoritarianism and imperiousness.

 We were dismayed by the tragic revelation that this describes Oregon’s government ruled by Governor Brown and her elitist supporters. It is understandable why Governor Brown’s administration has utter disregard for the concerns of the 31 counties that did not vote for her—It is obvious that Governor Brown’s supporters have total disdain for the Oregonians that did not vote for her.

Senator Ginny Burdick was asked by a reporter why the emergency clause was being placed on SB 1530, which eliminates the opportunity to send this proposal to the Oregon voters. She stated the bill was “too complex” and would be hard to understand by the common voters, so the legislature must pass it and eliminate any opportunity for Oregonians to have a voice in the matter.

SB 1530 is being promoted as an environmental bill but it will devastate agriculture, timber, commercial fishermen, miners and transportation and raise the cost of everything Oregonians use. It is a wolf in sheep’s clothing.

It is especially discouraging that Oregonians are not being told about the huge costs associated with this tax bill which will cost them in every way and in reality will make a minuscule difference, if any, regarding the environment.

 Larry & Susan Snyder


Clear cuts harm the Gorge

To the editor,

In preparation for Senator Ron Wyden’s 967th town hall which was held on Saturday February 15 in The Dalles, I wrote up the following question:

“Senator,  thank you for your support on past support protecting the Columbia Gorge. However, the National Scenic Act has a huge loophole that allows massive clearcuts that are destroying the scenic beauty of the Gorge. For example, over 300 acres of forest have been destroyed over the past eight years just east of Hood River.

People in my community of Hood River overwhelmingly oppose clearcuts in the Gorge. Logging should be treated like any other kind of development to avoid harm to the resources of the Gorge. Can you help us change the law to end industrial clearcuts in the Gorge and support selective logging in suitable locations?“

Senator Wyden agreed to give this some thought and will get back to me. It is time to end the destructive  practice of clear cutting forest lands in the National Scenic Area.

Peter Cornelison

Field Representative, Friends of the Gorge

Hood River

Thank you, editor

To the editor,

Thank you editor for your well written Opinion piece in the Chronicle’s weekend edition of Feb. 15-16, “Environmental regulations have their place.” In it you pointed out Superfund site cleanup around The Dalles and how Nixon signed the Environmental Protection Act into law. In addition, the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Clean Water Act were ALL products of Republican administrations. This was back in the 70’s when there was strong environmental support from both sides of the aisle.

My question is: what’s happened to Republican leadership since then?

Citing burdensome regulations as the problem, the Trump administration is doing it’s level best to gut the environmental protections of all these acts. His real unstated goal is simply more votes, as he has no regard for protection of our public lands, or our air and water quality—or science in general for that matter. Please Google: “Trump and environment” for an eyeful. Worse, with his bullying he’s dragging good Republican leadership into the gutter as well. For example, Rep. Greg Walden’s voting record score from the League of Conservation Voters in 2018 is 6 percent. Compare that with Democrats Wyden and Merkley’s record each at 100 percent.

To the editor’s point about the Superfund cleanup in The Dalles, currently there are more unfunded sites listed for cleanup nationally than at any time in the last forty years—and Trump has requested a 30 percent reduction in the EPA’s budget.

In order to counter the effects of global climate change we are going to need hard bipartisan work and shared goals. Continued political warfare is not the answer.

We must demand conflict resolution from our elected representatives or replace them. Our environment is sacred. Protect it.

Bruce Schwartz

The Dalles

License freedom

To the editor,

All of us have seen those personalized auto license plates. The ones I have seen are usually pretty witty and clever and sometimes I have had to really decipher the intended meaning. One time I asked a driver what his plate meant, and learned it was his ham radio call sign. That is one I would never have figured out.

I recently heard about a Texan that had his personalized plate approved and then the state of Texas made him give it back.

The plate read “JAIL45.”

When  is saw the plate label I instantly knew what it meant. The 45 refers to the 45th president of the United States of America, and the word “JAIL” is jail. So the implied meaning of the plate is, “Jail Donald Trump.” It was cute, clever and witty and of course, typical American sarcasm and humor.

Well some other Texan was offended by the plate and complained to the Texas department of licensing and the owner of the plate had to turn it in.

Well I felt sorry for the Texan that had to give up his plate. I really liked the label! So I have come up with an idea on how to be supportive of that poor abused Texan. But I need your help. My request is this; borrow a Make America Great Again hat from one of your friends or family members. Then write on a piece of paper with a heavy sharpie, JAIL45. Then please set that piece of paper to the right of the hat and take a phone picture. It should read, “Make America Great Again JAIL45.” Then send the photo to family and friends in Texas, showing true Oregonian support for the poor Texan that lost his license plate.

Thank you,

Earl W. Burt

The Dalles

Editor’s note: We do not typically publish letters from outside the region, but could not resist the following request, with its “please” and “thank you” and detailed request all carefully printed out in pencil.

Oregon State project

Dear people of the great State of Oregon,

Greetings! My name is name is Leo and I am a 5th grade student in Salida, California. We live in the central valley east of San Fancisco.

This year we are to complete our state project. I picked Oregon! I am asking for any and all information from and about your great State of Oregon to be sent to me. If you would please send my any postcards, articles, maps, pictures, pins, pencils, posters, pamphlets or an other special items from Oregon for my project, I would really appreciate it. I really appreciate your help in making my project the best!

Leo c/o Mr. Flores

Salia Elementary School

4519 Finney Rd.

Salida, CA 95368

Support OR bills

To the editor,

With the Oregon Legislature in session it’s time to take action on three bills vital to all Oregonians and our collective future.

The Opportunity Zone Bill (HB4010). This bill would disconnect the Oregon tax code from Trump’s federal “Opportunity Zone” tax provisions that will otherwise give Oregon tax revenue to the very wealthy. This is not where I want my tax money to go! The one percent have more than enough. We need be savvy about how federal tax provisions can serve all Oregonians.

The Gun Storage Bill (HB4005). The human heartbreak of children shooting children while “playing” should never happen. Some form of gun control legislation is critical. This action can protect our children and ourselves. It’s time to step up and take a stand.

The Climate Bill (SB 1530A). This bill helps build the green economy in our state. Although “cap and trade” has been shown to work in other states to both ratchet down CO2 emissions and stimulate the economy, Republicans in our Oregon Senate are again threatening to walk out like they did last session to prevent a quorum for this bill. The Senators were elected and are paid to do their job. Senators, show up, stay put, and do your job.

I urge Oregonians living in the Columbia Gorge and our local legislators to support these three bills.

Mimi Maduro


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