Does this sound like reform?

Sen. Alan Bates has, we are told (The Oregonian, Jan. 29, "The curious case of Senate Bill 369"), "inadvertently introduced" SB 369.

How in the world does a senator "inadvertently" introduce a bill for consideration? The bill would exempt the benefits of PERS retirees from public disclosure — nothing inadvertent about that — while telling us he is for transparent government, he is trying to obscure its costs.

Now that he has been called on this, apparently he is denying he really wants to see the bill passed. However, he won't withdraw it. Clearly, it appears he is trying to manage our perceptions with smoke and mirrors. What is really going on, Senator Bates? — S. M. Dernedde, Medford

Stand up to Monsanto

It is time Congress stop genuflecting to Monsanto and get on with representing the people of the United States, the people who pay them to act in this country's best interest, unlike Monsanto and its incessant drive to contaminate not only our food supply (if that wasn't enough to jail them), but to also infiltrate our judicial system and turn it into a shameful malignancy.

It's way past time for the FDA and our reps in Washington to stand up to Monsanto or step down from office. — Linda Zigich, Medford

Money grows on trees

Twenty million dollars, $18 million. Wow, I'm sure glad that in Medford the money grows on trees. All that money for a swimming pool, all that money for a post office — then tear it down.

Now a police station. Why not buy the Red Lion Motel and give each police officer his own room?

These are the same guys who spent millions downtown for parking garages that already need repairs.

There also is the building along the railroad that sat empty for years, an awning for a building that wore out, bricks in the sidewalk and street lamps that now need to be repaired.

As guardians of the city's money, Medford needs help or education. — Clyde Severson, Central Point

No stinking pollution

Where is our paid-for-by-the-citizens county government?

These folks have an obligation to do what is best for all the citizens and the land. This includes the protection of overall health for more than 165 homes and the "safety" of Bear Creek and its surroundings.

Case in point: an RR5 lot, with questionable easement, is being permitted to house a stinkingly dangerous asphalt-manufacturing facility within a proven flood plain near Bear Creek, and it continues to expand.

This is an irresponsibility on the part of those in charge of protecting our valley; this situation needs to be rectified as of yesterday! And culpable bureaucrats should be seriously chastised. — D. Pestlin, Talent

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