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MailTribune.com
  • LETTERS TO THE EDITOR

  • Editor's note: Because of an editing error, the following letter was incomplete in Friday's paper. Here it is in its entirety:
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  • Editor's note: Because of an editing error, the following letter was incomplete in Friday's paper. Here it is in its entirety:
    The city of Medford will pay Chris Reising $123,802 a year to share the job of city manager with Bill Hoke, who is being paid $138,800 to coordinate public works, building, and planning in order "to make the process less cumbersome for developers."
    This is supposedly needed because "a 2004 study ... found numerous flaws in the development services process," and "large projects get bogged down by ... bureaucratic hurdles." Now a developer will be able to ask Mr. Reising why he can't get his permit.
    Shouldn't the person who is either holding up or denying a permit be able to tell the developer why, and what needs to be done to rectify the situation? If not, then why has that person denied or held up the permit in the first place? Shouldn't the employees at building, planning, and public works be capable of communicating with each other without having to pay someone to coordinate for them?
    Wouldn't it be more cost-effective to fix the numerous flaws that were identified 10 years ago, and to streamline the process to eliminate bureaucratic hurdles, instead of forking out $262,602 a year to help developers work around them? — Marti Hawes, Eagle Point
    As they used to say on "Dragnet," "Just the facts." Oregon requires three years in math to graduate from high school, while 45 states require four years of math. Oregon students spend less time in school (contact hours) than any other state in the union. As for "white students," we rank fourth worst among the states in graduating within four years from high school. Overall, for all students only 67 percent will graduate in four years — Medford schools graduate at a 68 percent rate.
    As for public school achievement scores, Oregon did rank 40th, it is projected that we will rank 48th among the states. So who ranks 49th and 50th, is it Alabama, Mississippi or Louisiana?
    Oregon public schools are underfunded with large class sizes that stretch teachers to the limit of human endurance. Businesses will not locate here and families leave the state to seek better educational opportunities for their children.
    As for the Medford public schools, our honor roll students are struggling at Oregon and Oregon State. Many of our best students are flunking out at OIT, where the registrar stated to me that she rates Medford schools poor academically compared to Bend, Lake Oswego, Beaverton, etc. — Mike E. Miles, Medford
    Whenever a major tragedy or event happens somewhere, I look at what's going on in the rest of the world at that time. So obviously, China's announcement they had completed construction of a huge underground tunnel in oil-rich Xinjiang, homeland of the Uighur Muslims who are undergoing a Tibet-like extinguishment, didn't get as much notice as the "disappearance" of Flight MH370 of Malaysia, a predominantly Muslim country. (I do wonder what the Arabs feel about Xinjiang's governor Nur Bekri's ignorant and bigoted comments about Islam.)
    What was most terrifying for me about MH370 was how not one world power spoke up about their surveillance satellite playback. That conspicuous omission became an ungodly behemoth in the room with each passing day, as I'm sure most of us had trusted it would be announced by a government, military or even Google within minutes, maybe hours or a day, where MH370 went. Later, there followed mysterious "capsizings" of Malaysian boats filled with Muslims en route to honor Ramadan with their families, and subsequently, the recent tragedy involving yet another Malaysia jetliner. And now Israel has attacked Gaza. It looks like all these events actually represent a war against Islam, in my opinion. — Patti Morey, Ashland
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