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Wild spring chinook may have "dodged a bullet" when an Eagle Point Irrigation District canal failed in early October, but the unfortunate event underscores the need to modernize our irrigation systems ("Spill muddies Big Butte Creek," Oct. 4).

This recent blow-out is reminiscent of the 2010 Talent Irrigation District ditch failure in the Little Applegate that harmed steelhead and other aquatic life.

These incidents underscore the need to implement WISE (Water for Irrigation, Streams and Economy), which is a regionally supported water management project and a long-term solution to aging irrigation systems that waste water, degrade water quality and threaten fish. WISE would increase stream flows, improve water quality and recover habitat for salmon while also improving reliability and efficiency for irrigation districts and their customers.

The EPID has thus far declined to be a part of WISE, yet piping EPID ditches is a winner all around. I hope that this most recent example of ditch failures will reinvigorate support for the WISE project and motivate the EPID to join the WISE effort or start their own planning to improve water quantity, quality and delivery systems.

Our wild salmon are under fire and we need to reduce the threats. — Lesley Adams, program director, Rogue Riverkeeper

This letter is in response to Brenda White's letter Oct. 26. Ms. White seems to think that people should not watch the "Extreme Makeover" show in order to send a message to the producers.

This show is popular because of the wonderful stories that are told of struggle and inspiration. The show is also popular because it is just what it says, extreme. If the show built 500-square-foot hovels to house the families that they help, I doubt there would be much of a following. People want to see a deserving family getting something above and beyond what most of us will ever dream of affording.

Most of us are happy for the McPhails, not jealous of the generosity that they received from "Extreme Makeover: Home Edition" and this community. Many people in this valley happily donated their time, money and skills. It brought this community together for the good of a local family. It also put a spotlight on the Sparrow Club, a wonderful organization.

I am proud to have volunteered for the McPhail project and am saddened that Ms. White feels that she needs to take away from that in the name of volunteerism that she approves of. — Kelly Kleinberg, Medford

A couple of weeks ago, a nice gentleman by the name of Terry Smith wrote a letter to the editor thanking us for help with a street sign at Orth Drive and Highway 99. The recognition should actually go to the workers who installed the new sign and trimmed the trees. They are: Central Point Public Works Department employees Tom Phillips, Brian Gustafson and Mike Reese, along with Central Point Parks and Recreation employees Cory Qualls and Mark Brindle. Thank you. — Ed Cobb, Central Point Public Works Department