LETTERS TO THE EDITOR
Regarding the Feb. 9 story on Phoenix's water rate shock, I would suggest the City Council consider reducing the base rate on par with the surrounding cities and establish a commercial rate.
I have asked for two years now a basic question of the council. Do you have it right and the other cities have it wrong or do they have it right and you have it wrong?
Large box stores pay the same base rate as a residence, for example.
The city will do a new rate study, and I hope these issues can be addressed. The $33.50 base rate, soon to be $34, suggests we have room to adjust a rate favorable to the citizens. Phoenix charges a base rate two-and-a-half times the rate of other local cities. A level playing field is in order. Once the water passes through a meter it belongs to you. Phoenix will charge you extra depending on where it goes.
Oddly no elected officials were quoted in the story. A water study must to be defensible to the public. — S. Michael Stitt, Phoenix
Mr. Hotakainen's article, "Food concerns could complicate proposed U.S.-Europe trade deal" is a very biased story unfit for the business section of our paper. He was condescending and insulting to the very people with whom we want to trade.
He lacked objectivity and the article perpetuates prejudice and seems to be written to support businesses wishing to expand the use of GMO- and hormone-enhanced products at the expense of jokes about "Europeans." This article belonged on the editorial page, if anywhere; certainly not on the business page.
I have family members living in Europe who would be offended by this article. Many people in the USA object to eating meat injected with antibiotics, hormones, or GMO foods. Are they "fussy" too?
This type of journalism is not how you negotiate trade with Europe. — Sue Dolf, Medford
Mountain View Estates in Talent has a conundrum. There is an asphalt plant in the Bear Creek floodplain, in the Urban Growth Boundary of Talent, applying to the county for a nonconforming use permit to operate within a county residential zone. Good family, running a good business, good jobs, no question.
The neighboring senior community of 164 homes is suffering from off-gassing, dust and noise — a primary reason why heavy industrial should not be permitted in residential zones. In an appeal, residents have shared their health challenges and advice from their physicians that their environment may be aggravating their health concerns.
Despite the cries for help, the residents have stated they don't want to see the plant go out of business, they want compromise. They just want the plant to find industrial zoned land and move.
The high road, very inspirational! What does the future hold? Liability battles over health issues? Potential environmental challenges to Bear Creek, in the floodplain, on the greenway? Or compromise that is win-win for everyone concerned. My fingers are crossed! — Darby Stricker, Talent
I can't believe the liberals who are making such a big deal out of Senator Rubio taking a drink of water. So what if he did? So what if he wasn't smooth about it? There is really, and I mean really, something wrong in this country when a man making a speech in front of millions of people is criticized for taking a drink of water. This is really not an issue that sould even hint at a "career ender." Shame on all of you! — Vicki Hunt, Medford
I am still shaking my head in disbelief about our state legislators unable to live on $22,000 a year. I am a single person on Medicare Disability and was told this week that the state of Oregon considers $1,293 per month or $15,516 per year a livable wage. Please ask our governor if he would like to trade. — Michael Palmer, Medford