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Letters, Nov. 18

Are they nuts at ODOT?

We just received the Moving Ahead pamphlet from the Oregon Department of Transportation. In it ODOT is talking about repaving some of the bridges on Interstate 5 that were built in the early ’60s, and rerouting all the traffic during this project over at least three bridges that were built almost 100 years ago!

Are they nuts?

We live on Highway 99, near the Foots Creek bridge that was built in 1928, and pictured on page 23 of the pamphlet. Two other small bridges on 99 are not capable of safe transport of all the traffic they want to divert, particularly Miller’s Gulch and Birdseye Creek. Two semis cannot safely pass one another on these bridges, as they are barely wide enough for two cars.

No one obeys the 45 mph speed limit on this stretch of highway, especially truck drivers.

My solution: Repair or replace these small old bridges first, then do the repair work on the freeway bridges.

Another suggestion: Extra law enforcement during this repair time.

Bob Isom

Gold Hill

Carbon bills unfair

How many climate change activists live on fixed incomes? Have they considered how fixed-income citizens will adjust to the increased costs of plans that may make little difference?

Oregon’s proposed cap and trade bill is complicated and will hurt those on fixed incomes. How about “fee and dividend” instead? A progressive carbon fee would be placed on all emissions to encourage polluters to clean up their emissions. Fees collected would be used for streamlined administrative costs and as dividends to all citizens equally to cover increased costs. A proposed federal bill might be worth consideration. The nonpartisan Citizen’s Climate Lobby (CCL) supports HR 763 “The Energy Innovation and Carbon Dividend Act”.

Unfortunately, both plans pay out dividends via tax returns. Citizens who aren’t required to file income taxes because their incomes are too low would not receive the dividend they are due. The increased costs would hurt them the most.

Both plans are designed to change behavior, but will either plan affect our increasing appetite for and dependence on new technology and worldwide population growth? We can consider our daily personal choices. Thoughtful changes by every citizen and business could be helpful now and don’t require legislation.

Kathy Fennell

Medford

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