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Letters, Feb. 15

Pool input needed

Calling all swimmers, floaters and splashers. If you are young, old or in between, we want to hear from you!

Ashland Parks has created an ad hoc committee of six community members, two parks commissioners and three parks staff to help determine what’s next for the city’s aging 35-year-old Daniel Meyer Pool. Your participation is critical to get a beat on what citizens want. Should the pool be renovated or replaced is the question.

The city of Ashland has one public pool that is available to the community almost three months of the year. Swimmers like me would do underwater back flips to get a year-round indoor/outdoor pool to swim in.

If we do nothing, the pool itself and its infrastructure will go down the drain because it is requiring serious attention. My vision includes opportunities that meet some of all of our needs. With the Senior Center right next door, it would be great to expand swim opportunities for them, too.

Please consider attending one of the upcoming listening workshops to help guide the direction for our community.

Listening sessions: Tuesday Feb. 19 at the Senior Center at Homes from 5:30-7:30 p.m. and March 21 at the Grove at East Main Street from 5:30-7:30 p.m. There will be a short presentation and attendees will then break out into smaller groups to brainstorm ideas.

Stay updated at the parks website: ashland.or.us/pooladhoc. You can also call 541-488-5340.

Risa Buck


Lurching toward disaster

Fifty years ago, as an Army officer commanding a nuclear missile unit, I understood only too well the threat of a global catastrophe. Now, in my senior years, the world is lurching toward climate disaster.

My wife and I are avid gardeners. We avoid pesticides. Our gardens, butterflies and bees thrived, until ...

Suddenly last summer the clouds of bees and butterflies disappeared. Distraught, I contacted Pollinator Project Rogue Valley and learned that the most widely used pesticides, the neonicotinoids, could be the cause and that a global insect catastrophe was developing with evidence pointing to pesticide use, climate change and habitat destruction. Inspired, I vowed to take action to help save our pollinators.

Neonics are systemic and are absorbed into a plant’s entire organism, remaining up to two years, poisoning the nectar, pollen and the pollinators. Many vendors, including greenhouses, hardware stores and nurseries, sell neonics, often without understanding the threat to pollinators. Let’s contact local businesses, encourage them to discontinue the sale of neonics and provide information on the pesticides to their customers. We would then be able to recommend patronage of their bussesses.

Don Morris


School zone unclear

I need to get something off my chest. I’ve held onto it for much too long.

Just over a year ago, I was traveling west on East Main after grabbing a bagel for lunch. I was between Mallard and Whitman, when an officer coming from the opposite direction turned on his lights. I looked down and noticed that I was going 29 mph, so I was confused as to why he was pulling me over. Right in front of me was a 25 mph speed limit sign.

I pulled into Fordyce, still perplexed, and shaking. I handed the officer my registration and proof of insurance. He told me I was still in the school zone. He walked to his motorcycle, came back and handed me a ticket for $340.

Mind you, I had not had a traffic violation in more than a decade. Here’s my question and the reason I am writing. I live between two different school zones in Medford and each is clearly marked, END SCHOOL ZONE, as are other school zones in other parts of Ashland. Why then is the school zone on East Main not clearly marked? I still am not sure where the school zone begins and ends.

As a single parent, this was certainly a hardship for me, and I faithfully paid my monthly installment until just a few months ago. And I’m still resentful because this seems a less-than-honest way for the city to be bringing in revenue.

Felicia Cruz


Dismayed by veto

I was initially delighted by the City Council’s Lyft/Uber approval and then dismayed when Mayor Stromberg vetoed it.

I have found both of these services invaluable when traveling and think it’s a must for any city or town depending on tourist dollars. More importantly, it’s a must for our older aging population, of which I’m a member. Currently, I volunteer for an organization helping people get to shopping and doctor’s appointments. These people are not indigent. Many have expressed frustration with not having Lyft/Uber in Ashland and would prefer the independence of calling for a ride themselves — maybe even go to the movies or symphony.

Taxis are not the answer. Last summer a friend’s daughter was dropped off on Ashland Street after traveling from San Francisco by train, then bus from Klamath Falls. Overheated and exhausted, she had expected to call Uber for a ride to her mother’s vacant house. No Uber. So she called a cab. It would be a 45 minute wait in over 100 (smoky) degrees. Luckily I was home and picked her up.

Let’s join the 21st century. The City Council did the right thing. I hope the mayor will reconsider this short-sighted veto.

Claudia Little


Sad to lose Etling

It was with sadness and thanks that I read “We have a new editor.”

Sadness in losing Bert Etling. I thought he did a marvelous job in turning the Tidings into a paper so fitting for Ashland.

So thanks to Bert for his Ashland accomplishments. I can’t imagine anyone doing better.

Jack Altman


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