Mail Tribune Online Edition
Will they do better?It's a real shame, that we, as taxpayers, are going to have to bail out the Medford 549C School District! Over the years we have diligently paid our taxes only to have our school district not keep up their end of the bargain.
The shame is that the school district has not maintained our schools to the levels that it should have, or else we wouldn't have to do major repairs or replace entire buildings. Water damage, dry-rot, mold, lousy heat, air conditioning and on and on. Now they want us to foot the $189.2 million bill!
What guarantee do we have that this school district will do any better job maintaining the newly replaced or repaired schools? We don't! It will be business as usual.
It is just the "New American Way!" Get something bright and shiny and new and just run the wheels off of it. When it stops running, just park it off to the side and go borrow some more money and get another bright and shiny new one. Don't worry, I can make the payments &
8212; yeah, right! Is this how you want your tax money spent wasted? &
8212; Robert Stewart, Jacksonville
History of bitternessThe Gold Hill City Council has a history of strife, recalls, bitterness.
Jan Fish, one of the council members facing recall, is a friend and so I am aware of her contributions to Gold Hill. Jan has used her Laurel Hill Golf Course as a conduit to raise vital funding, both for Friends of Gold Hill aid to the needy and for Patrick School's playground makeover. I assume the other two council members care about Gold Hill's welfare. They surrender untold hours to council work.
Mayor Sherry Young, also a friend, has worked tirelessly for Gold Hill. I think undue emotional and psychological pressure caused her to sign the recall petition. There is a way out of the morass and it is called mediation. It would enable the council to resolve its differences, dissolve its anger and strengthen its base. Mediation works! &
8212; Elizabeth Udall, Gold Hill
District misuses flierAs a taxpayer, I'd like to point out a concern I have with the Medford School District administration's explanations of negotiations between the district and its teachers. Students in the Medford schools were given a double-sided paper to take home to their parents explaining how the district is "protecting the taxpayers' investment." This paper was printed at taxpayer expense for all elementary school students.
A similar message was printed for families, this time with a cover letter and single-sided copies three pages total, then sent through the postal system to the homes of all Medford students. Printing, envelope-stuffing and postage were all at the taxpayers' expense. At the top of the original printing were the words "First in a series of four." Does this mean Medford School District patrons can expect three more explanations from the district about their negotiation stand?
The biggest insult? The public relations firm the Medford School District administrators and School Board hired to develop these messages cost taxpayers $52,500. &
8212; Kelly Larson, Medford
A quest for sprawlIt should trouble Medford residents that both principal decision-making bodies continue on a quest for sprawl. Medford has exceeded 50,000 residents since the early 1990s and therefore should focus on better using the land already in the city, not adding to the city. It is troubling that the density of Medford is still below 3,000 people per square mile as shown by Damian Mann's Nov. 14, 2005 story on Jackson County densities.
This shows that Medford still has decision makers dedicated to the culture of waste and sprawl instead of thrift and resource conservation.
That Medford's Planning Commission and council still have not pushed for an adequate in-fill program but instead consider annexing yet more tracts of farmland, open space and wildlife habitat along a parallel track to Regional Problem Solving shows an indifference to a legacy of livability, economic diversity and energy conservation.
That prominent members of the development community want more sprawl is of course normal, but wrong to be sanctioned by Medford's Planning Commission and City Council.
Which of the commissioners and counselors will finally say Medford's current degree of farmland destruction, sprawl and resource waste are enough? &
8212; Brent Thompson, president of Friends of Jackson County, Phoenix
Little League confrontationOn May 10 I had a Little League game and two kids had some words between each other during the game. Our coach took care of the problem. At the end of the game, one of the others kid's father from the other team came up to our coach and threatened him with angry words and said he would beat him up.
I am 11 years old and I was very frightened. This man seemed like he was going to hurt our coach. Our coach would rather not fight in front of us and didn't. It made me extremely upset because he not only threatened him, but he threatened our coach in front of his family and my family.
Parents should never do this in front of children and families at a game. I am so angry and disappointed with this threatening man. This is something that should have never happened. &
8212; Oceana Buckingham, Medford
Educational dreamsAs an old 80 years retired teacher/administrator from Medford 549C School District, I would like to reiterate the lesson that 549C voters taught my generation of administrators in the 1980s &
8212; education of kids is not about buildings. It is about what you do!
The best system would be a half-day school with the basics televised and tests given in the classroom by computer.
Elementary schools would be grades K to 8. They would also be within walking distance of each child's home. Where necessary, the school board would buy and remodel homes to make this happen.
Secondary schools would use current buildings, but each building would have a vocational motif such as academic, business, music and graphic arts.
As the Bible says, "In those days, old men will dream dreams." &
8212; Cliff Winkler, Medford