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Letters to the Editor for July 3

Fossil fuel independence

If you are concerned about 100,000,000-plus tons per year of coal exports traveling through the Columbia Gorge and climate change, please join us and march in the Hood River Fourth of July Parade.

The Oregon DEQ is close to approving construction of the first coal terminal in the Northwest; public comment is open until July 12.

Wear red, bring bells and percussion noisemakers to “Sound the Alarm” and bring a squirt gun or mister if it is hot. Walk or bike to the corner of Pacific Avenue and Woods Court in the Heights by 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 4. The parade starts at 10 a.m.

Peter Cornelison

Friends of the Columbia Gorge

Rev. John Boonstra

United Church of Christ

Large shoes to fill

Bob Francis’ resignation was a huge loss to our community and an embarrassment to the city. He’s been an outstanding city manager who has worked diligently over the last 10 years to promote the city’s best collective interests. It’s a very difficult job, and one that requires strong, independent leadership and tough choices.

We’ve found Bob to be a dedicated public servant who truly cares about Hood River. He’s been professional and passionate about his job. He’s also contributed a great amount of his personal time and talents to many of our community’s organizations and charities.

We believe the great majority of us find Bob to be fair, reasonable, honest, independent, hard-working and sincere. And while some of us may have disagreed with certain decisions or outcomes, we haven’t met anyone that did not respect Bob. And he’s clearly enjoyed the respect of his staff.

These traits are exactly what we need in a city manager. It’s clear that Mr. Picard advised Bob to find another job and we’re told there “was a growing consensus on council that he was not the right man for the job.”

The big question though, and one which everyone seems to be asking, is “why?” It’s hard to imagine that the council’s dissatisfaction could be based on Bob’s performance and that leads to questions about what motivated this consensus.

Bob’s shoes will be tough to fill. Especially if the small universe of potential replacements feel that our city manager’s office is a difficult environment to work within, we are not likely to attract qualified candidates that possess the strength this office requires. If the position’s filled by someone from outside the area, they will surely lack Bob’s understanding of, and commitment to, our community.

Our mayor and city council have an opportunity during this Wednesday’s special council meeting to attempt to rectify this situation and, hopefully, to find a way to preserve Bob Francis’s position as our city manager.

Practically everyone we’ve spoken with believes that Bob is the right guy for the job. If our council members disagree with their constituents on this call, we are looking forward to hearing why.

David and Suny Simon

Hood River

Show respect for the flag

Fourth of July again and another chance to enjoy the great parade! And also to get worked up concerning two upsetting observations:

One: to see grown men running through the finish line in abbreviated thong underwear made from the American flag is very insulting to those of us who served in the military; and

Two: to see parents missing the chance to stand and remove their hats (and setting an example to the children) when the flag goes by. It only takes a moment to honor the symbol of our country, and I urge everyone to come to attention at this very special time.

Marvin Turner

Hood River

Great improvements

I wish to acknowledge the owners, employees and workmen for investing in and updating the following businesses: Mesquitery Restaurant, Hood River Supply, Comfort Suites, Taco Bell, Dairy Queen and the McDonalds located on Cascade Avenue.

I am sure you pressed through many difficult decisions and labored many hours to implement the improvements at great cost and inconvenience during your remodels. Your effort did not go unnoticed and Hood River looks a lot better for it.

Cheers!

Scott Haanstad

Hood River

Better ways to spend $15K

It blows my mind to read that donations given to an organization that is spending $15,000 for fireworks to entertain individuals and families when there are so many people going to bed hungry, unable to cover their day to day costs to feed and care for their families.

Daily I receive requests for donations for very worthy causes — none of which intend to burn up the donation within one or two hours after receiving it.

One article that I received stated that today we face a global crisis. One out of every eight people go to bed hungry every night — not because there is not enough food for every man, woman and child, but due to unequal access to resources.

I do not understand how we can enjoy burning up $15,000 in a one- or two-hour entertainment display with nothing to show for it but memories the next day. I was told that I am not patriotic, but I do not think that burning up $15,000 is a patriotic value.

Have a joyful Fourth of July by giving your donation to a worthy cause.

Mildred B. Goe

Odell

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