Letters, Oct. 3
Support Gomez, Wallan
I’m concerned about Oregon’s future: schools nearly the worst in the nation; PERS draining education budgets, including technical training programs; regulations and taxes so burdensome that businesses are fleeing and too few coming in to provide opportunities for today’s families and future generations; neglected and mismanaged forests ruining our environment and our health!
Two talented, knowledgeable and experienced women — each well-informed and well-prepared to take on these challenges, including a fair solution to PERS — are running: Kim Wallan, for House District 6, has served on Medford School Board, City Council, SOREDI, RVMPO, and the Hospital Facilities Authority. Jessica Gomez, for Senate District 3, is a successful entrepreneur with experience in Salem and on multiple state and community boards. Both have solid visions addressing the aforementioned issues, and more!
I whole-heartedly endorse them. They are worthy of your votes. They’ll have mine! Then elect Knute Buehler to backstop their leadership.
Vote no on meals tax
One of the basic claims behind the meals tax, Measure 15-180, is that a significant number of Jacksonville’s tourists use our police services and thus should contribute to the cost through a meals tax. The reality is quite different. Police records show that in 2017, during the off season from January through March, out of 411 calls for assistance, six were from tourists. That’s 1.46 percent. For the peak tourist season from May through September, 751 calls were received, only five of which were from tourists. That’s only 0.79 percent!
This is our community, and we should be responsible for our police services. We should welcome those who contribute to our local economy without treating them unfairly with a meals tax. Treat 15-180 with the no vote it deserves.
Vote no on meals tax
“Eating out” is discretionary. Restaurant owners hope we’ll drop by. Sometimes we do. Sometimes we don’t.
“Security” — a police presence — is non-discretionary. Most citizens, I believe, agree: We need an adequate police department.
So why would citizens of a community hope to pay for a non-discretionary service through a discretionary source? Counting on about a dozen eating establishments to provide funding so the other 2,800 of us don’t have to just doesn’t add up.
Jacksonville’s $20 monthly utility surcharge is dedicated to the police and cannot be used for other services. It’s fixed for the next five years. Qualified low-income households are excluded from paying altogether.
Proponents of a restaurant food tax contend that tourists and music lovers will cover the expense. Well, this summer’s season established that they, too, have the ability to consider visiting us discretionary. Smell the smoke?
Please vote no on Measure 15-180, the meals tax.
Terry J. Erdmann and Paula M. Block
Since Greg Walden lacks the ammunition to attack Jamie McLeod-Skinner on real issues, he’s been pointing out her “faux family ties” in Oregon.
He doesn’t care to publicize that only 8 percent of his campaign contributions, versus 63 percent of McLeod-Skinner’s, came from residents of District 2.
Walden changed from a checkered shirt to his business suit to host a GOP fundraiser ($2,5,000-$25,000 per plate) at a location outside of our district. McLeod-Skinner has traveled throughout the district, listening to regular people on both sides of the political divide.
While Walden has been busy dismantling the ACA, threatening thousands of Oregonians with the loss of their health insurance benefits, McLeod-Skinner has been supporting health care for all. She recently hosted a town hall in Medford focused on health care issues. Walden hasn’t held a town hall here since April 2017.
Who’s more “western”? The actual issues count, not who’s wearing the cowboy hat.