Letters to the Editor for April 23

‘Doesn’t mean it’s true’

The conclusion at the end of a letter in Wednesday’s paper (Hood River News, April 20), “I assume that this is correct unless proven false,” is a prime example of the logical fallacy argumentum ad ignorantiam (argument from Ignorance). Because “a” can’t be proved false, doesn’t mean it’s true (and visa versa).

There are exceptions. This isn’t one of them.

Jerry Giarraputo

Hood River

Support STRs

As a long term homeowner currently using my home as a short term rental, I urge you to consider the unintended consequences of the proposed STR regulations. City leaders and groups like Livable Hood River offer the promise of more housing options for local residents and increased livability if the proposed regulations pass.

The gorilla in the room the proposed STR regulations don’t address is the city’s booming second home market. The city cannot regulate second homeownership. It can restrict the rights of existing and future homeowners from out of the area to use their home as an STR, but can’t keep well off out-of-owners from buying up homes in Hood River and leaving them dark most of the year.

The growing prosperity of nearby Portland, the Bay Area and Seattle are only going to increase the demand for second homeownership and drive up housing costs. Cash buyers and families who don’t need supplemental income to own their second home will continue to snap up homes. If they can’t use their second home as an STR, they’ll buy a lower priced home, directly competing with the majority of local residents.

With today’s increasingly mobile and telecommuting workforce, many people work from and start businesses out of their homes. Telecommuting and home-based businesses in residential areas are common in Hood River, but no one is rushing to regulate these “commercial” uses. Yet proponents of the proposed STR regulations claim STRs in residential areas are a commercial use that must be stopped. Following this logic, the city should prohibit all home-based businesses.

Neighborhoods of dark homes and an increasingly exclusive second home market will not increase livability. I support Lovable Hood River, provisions that allow true grandfathering of existing STRs and reasonable STR good neighbor requirements. The city has a duty to respect the rights of homeowners. When we purchased our home in Hood River, we were excited to become a part of this inclusive community. The proposed STR regulations will promote divisions and exclusivity and they won’t alleviate the housing problem. They will make it worse and harm the economy.

Tina McNerthney


Rave for ‘Cosi’

The Ping and Woof Opera Company came to Hood River this weekend and what an opera they performed. The comic opera Cosi fan Tutte, or “Women are Like That,” Mozart’s 20th opera, played to very appreciative audiences through the sponsorship of the CAA Partner Project and Tina and Dennis Castañares. Thank you, Tina and Dennis, from opera lovers old and young and particularly younger audience members who may have had the shudders from the very mention of the ‘O’ word.

But this was no stuffy performance. The Ping and Woof Company are all young professionals themselves. The sets and staging are designed for intimate performance spaces exactly like the theater at the Columbia Center for the Arts. The audience was right there in the trendy Portland bar where the story takes place.

The young company possess professional levels of operatic singing ability combined with a fresh take on the characters in the right-now setting. And with the subtitles (the opera is in Italian) the story was easy to follow and the local references … I-84, Marchesi Wines … instantly enjoyed. This is the type of new smaller scale opera performance that is needed to keep a love of opera alive as large companies struggle with their budgets.

Thank you to all those who made this performance possible and the delight that it was. Here’s hoping more live events like this will take place at the CCA!

Dick Swart

Hood River

Vote no

We grew up in Hood River and moved to Cascade Locks 36 years ago. We moved here for a job. Historically our town has seen prosperous times, but the economic growth of the 1980s bypassed Cascade Locks. We do not have a doctor, pharmacy, bank, K-12 school or even a well-staffed Fire/EMS Department. It’s a town with limited parks, sidewalks, poorly constructed roads and an outdated water system. We are a community that has aspirations and hopes of a better tomorrow. We dream of a sustainable infrastructure that uses a variety of aspects of our city’s existing rights just like any other city uses their rights, to benefit its citizens for economic development. No more, no less.

A large portion of our residents have lived and worked in Cascade Locks before the Gorge Scenic Act. Mr. Stroud (April 16 Hood River News) wrote asking why anyone would want to move to Cascade Locks if they wanted to work there. Mr. Stroud should note that the National Scenic Act, as passed by Congress, pushed for economic development within the incorporated cities of the Gorge, Cascade Locks included.

A thriving community can’t come from seasonal tourism. We need industry that is willing to invest in our town. This will help us be sustainable and economically viable on our own, which will then help the county be a better place to live and work. We have been working towards this goal for a long time, with limited results. Cascade Locks, as a community, should be able to decide how we are going to proceed.

This measure strips away these rights and it hurts our future for no reason. Please join us in voting no on 14-55.

Randy and Anne Holmstrom

Cascade Locks

Voting yes

When considering the ballot measure to protect our water from the bottled water companies, it’s useful to think back to the water conservation measures last summer. When you compare water use numbers in Hood River from 2014 to 2015, all of the conservation measures combined saved at best 3.6 million gallons. In comparison, Nestlé’s bottled water plant would export more than 236 million gallons a year.

So collectively all of the dead brown lawns, unflushed toilets and short showers saved less than 1/500th of the amount of water Nestlé would bottle up in plastic and send out of our county!

As a mom, I think water is just too important to our families and our farmers to be handed over to Nestlé or any other corporation that wants to bottle it up.

History is full of communities that thought they had enough water, only to wake up one day and realize that our water supply truly is finite.

I’m voting yes on 14–55 because I want to send a clear message to all the bottled water companies that Hood River is not the place you should come to try to make a profit off our water.

Maggie Roediger

Hood River

Elect Trandum

When asked by voters in Oregon’s District 52 why they should support my “Win With Walt” campaign for State Representative in this May’s Democratic primary, this is my response:

As long as big money is allowed to fund our elections process, we will never win, and big money will keep winning, every time.

No matter who we send to Salem, the game remains pretty much the same.

Once elected, they get down there and claim: “Oh, we are so divided down here that most of the things you want or need are simply not doable.”

Then, with everyone’s expectations lowered, they get away with grandstanding meager achievements as proof that bi-partisanship is still alive and well and, thanks to them, still possible, at least in some cases.

With no other options available, we keep sending people back to down to Salem to represent us that use big money to get themselves elected, time and time again.

The result is what I call “the broken government game.” It’s a kind of governance by obstruction by proxy, where powerful moneyed interests are able to control our political apparatus. They continue to enjoy having their issues addressed, while the solutions to many of our most critical problems are kept off the table.

The longer we allow this to continue, the more our collective lives will continue to degrade.

The solution to this problem is obvious. What we need to do is start electing people that are not under big money’s influence. Once we do that, many things that are not possible now will become possible. To that end, my campaign for state representative will only accept campaign cash in the amount of $50 per year, per individual, and only from individuals that actually live in our District. No corporate money, no outside money, no big money whatsoever.

If we want the game changed we need to start electing game changers.

Elect Walt Trandum as your next State Representative and see how much difference a win can make.

Walt Trandum


Supports Johnson

I first met Mark Johnson while I was working for the West Columbia Gorge Chamber of Commerce. As our state representative, Mark has been focused on supporting small businesses and helping to share information directly with the chamber and its members. The East Multnomah County communities have been well represented by Mark because he recognizes what sets us apart from Portland and works to address these unique needs. Mark has also been a link for these communities to the rest of the Mount Hood region, which benefits businesses in the area and supports the overall economy. I’m happy to support Mark Johnson in his re-election for state representative.

Sylvia Maly


Let it flow

This water issue is a childish like yes-no tug-of-war … just plain stupid!

Put a liquid in a bottle and label it “wine,” ship it to Timbuktu, no problem. Label it Cascade Locks’ water, big problem.

An unspoken fact is that Cascade Locks’ annual average rainfall is similar to that of Astoria. Therefore, these “keep your hands off of my water” folks may consider constructing a warehouse with an inverted roof, line-up the bottles under the “V” with a funnel inserted and let the God of Creation fill ‘em. (He kept Noah afloat, didn’t He? No other god could do that!)

Now, I’m being just as ridiculous as those fact-twisting “yes” campaigners.

Isn’t it true that Cascade Locks is one of the wettest places in the State of Oregon? If said water source was a well, then I too would favor this county charter amendment. But that’s not the case.

The fact is, it’s a God of Creation given blessing to the City of Cascade Locks for them to manage with wisdom. I liken it to an expulsion of body gas that can’t be contained with a cork.

It’s a perpetual source of H20. Therefore, let it flow, let it flow, let it flow. On out into the river. Or could that be a concern of these yes-pushing “water play boys and girls”? It’s our water to play in/on. Vote no on Measure 14-45.

Alan Winans

Hood River

Respect CL

The letters supporting the water Measure 14-55 are getting longer and more hysterical, predicting dire consequences if Nestlé comes to Cascade Locks. Their theme seems to be “Be afraid, be very afraid” and “the sky is falling.“ I am a Hood River native and can assure them that we have had droughts before, and our water and rivers will not disappear. (Cascade Locks has no droughts.) We do not need solutions for nonexistent problems.

I urge everyone who wishes to show respect for the people of Cascade Locks, their rights and their problems, to vote against this measure.

Ruth Turner

Hood River

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