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Letters - June 4

Friends together

As the Eagle 2003 Project comes to a close, I would like to thank a few people for their help:

To the school district that has a football program that our boys can participate in. To Coach Mitch Sanders who has a system in place that helps teach our kids the values I believe in. To all the people who donated their time and effort on our behalf. To the people in our community who gave to us from their hearts, without asking “what’s in this for me?” To the high school staff, Steve Fisk and Martha Capovilla who gave us guidance and encouragement. To the local paper and radio station that went over the top for us in their support.

The best of all is that all of this has reminded me not to let old friendships drift away. We are lucky to have this system that brought our boys together on the football field, bringing Gary Fisher and I together on the sidelines, to travel and dream about how this should be. I will no longer allow myself to let old friendships drift apart, and hope that new ones will come along.

I hope this project will inspire others to dream and take action so more blessings will come upon our community.

Brian Hoffman

Hood River

‘Cave’ people return

I’ve had the privilege of calling Hood River my home since 1973. As you might imagine, I’ve seen a quiet, fairly non-descript community blossom into the crown jewel of the Columbia River Gorge. As I see it, the changes to the town, indeed the valley, have been for the better.

The changes and improvements are too numerous to detail in this letter but, there is one thing that has never really changed since I can remember. The waterfront remains a constant eyesore and a source of embarrassment to this community. The only bragging right it claims to date is that it could pass for a naval bombing test site. Why, after years of “master planning” and tens of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money, does the waterfront still look like Ground Zero?

Every time the Port’s intention to finalize the waterfront master plan is printed on the front page of the Hood River News, the C.A.V.E. people start crawling out of the woodwork. Having decided to ignore the open process of planning, these Citizens Against Virtually Everything cry conspiracy at the last minute, howling about lack of public input. Demands of special meetings with various associations and groups fuel these voices of ignorance at the cost of ensuring the weeds will continue to flourish on Lot 6. While the C.A.V.E. crowd has argued for the past 12 years about waterfront development, they have been instrumental in causing Hood River to have one of the highest unemployment rates in the state. One cannot discount the connection between Hood River’s dismal economy and the reputation it has for being inhospitable to business development.

Developing the waterfront with the current mixed-use plan will help bring much-needed jobs to our community while maintaining a generous amount of open space. I encourage the Port Commissioners to ignore the detractors and forge ahead with the remaining portion of their existing process. They are elected to make this decision on behalf of the voters. I also encourage the city council to approve the necessary zoning changes so the waterfront can finally become a jewel for both our economy and our recreational spirit.

Richard D. Lee

Hood River

Preserve program

I am writing you this letter to ask that you save the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program. It was cut through the end of the 2003 year completely and I believe it needs to be reinstated fully for the 2003-2005 biennium.

This program has saved over 18,000 lives. I strongly believe that if you were to take this program away it would limit our community and especially our young teens. Please make sure that the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program gets the funding it needs.

Thanks for your consideration of this matter.

Alvira J. Lorea

Parkdale

Don’t quit on this

I am writing this letter to you today to ask that you save the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program. The Program was through the end of the 2003 year. And it needs to be reinstated in the 2003-2005 biennium.

The tobacco tax money should be used to educate kids about the dangers of tobacco use. I also believe that, since smokers are willing to pay the tax, they should have services provided to them when they want to quit.

Please make sure that the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program gets the funding that it needs, so we can give help to those adults that want to quit.

The Oregon Tobacco Prevention Program has been very successful; 60,000 Oregonians have called the Quitline because they want to stop.

I think that if tobacco users want to quit, they should have the treatment necessary to help them quit the use of tobacco. I strongly feel that this program be kept.

Yesenia Chavarria

Hood River

A cycling classic

As a cyclist, and supporting sponsor of the 2003 Mt. Hood Cycling Classic, I would like to thank all of the sponsors, volunteers and especially the organizers, Chad Sperry and Julie and Shane Wilson of Discover Bicycles. This was an idea that took a tremendous amount of planning and time by all parties, and could become a very positive event for Hood River. McCurdy Farms is looking forward to continuing its support of the Mt. Hood Cycling Classic in the years to come.

Craig McCurdy

Hood River

A clear-cut case

I was shocked to find out that the Tobacco Education and Prevention Program was being cut through the rest of the year. This is a program that works, we should be proud of this program! Smoking rates have dramatically decreased for both adults and children since the program was started in 1997. In Hood River we have lowered the use of tobacco by eighth graders to below 2 percent from 19 percent five years ago.

This should be a clear-cut case. The Tobacco Education and Prevention Program works, and programs that are this successful should stay around. It saves the taxpayers $540 million each year and saves 1,800 Oregonians’ lives.

Please make sure that the Tobacco Prevention and Education Program is fully funded in the next biennium and show you care about the health of our children.

Mayra Munoz

Hood River

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