Letters to the Editor, June 22
Haven't called/written/emailed Rep. Greg Walden and Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley about the Trans-Pacific Partnership? Miraculously your neighbors, here and across the country, have stalled a horrendous boondoggle for transnational corporations — stalled it for a time — giving us more time to alert fellow citizens that TPP is only partly about trade. Just the implications for local health care are staggering!
Please, my fellow citizens, take 15 minutes to look into this and call and write these three elected officials. There was lots of news Friday, June 12. It could have been decided, again Monday, June 15, but wasn't. Don't delay!
GMO ban: priceless
County Administrator Danny Jordan is trying to scare us again about the cost of the GMO crop ban and legal defense. In a reprint of an Oregonian article on June 8, Jordan states his old "estimates" from back in the campaign, now including "significant" legal fees.
It didn't work then, it won't work now. Sixty-six percent of voters approved the ordinance, and did not buy the political bull of these "estimates." Jordan admitted enforcement costs could be zero, since enforcement "isn't required under the new law," the article's sub-title.
Jordan listed in his costs $1,000 for training. That's one category I'd like to see increased. He obviously needs more training on this issue.
The county has its own counsel, on salary to defend against lawsuits. What significant costs did it incur? Our Family Farms and other interveners also defended the ordinance, funded by another massive grassroots legal defense fundraising, saving the county money. County counsel showed up and represented the people too, though I doubt it cost "significant" money.
Besides, if there's anything the citizens want our county to spend on, it's the GMO crop ban. It allows for more prosperity throughout our beautiful valley.
No rule, no foul
How truly sad that we lost a qualified officer who had been doing a good job for our community over an issue that could have been corrected with an office memo instead of ruining their career and livelihood over an infraction.
Smacks of another outstanding deputy who dared to confront "the system" when he opposed Mr. Winters in the last election and lost his job over nothing more than innuendo. Sounds like sour grapes politics to me.
How does this cancel all the good these men have been doing for so many years? How do you repair a wrongfully damaged reputation?
Letter omits facts
The June 16 letter to the editor from Kristin Schulz comes from one of the two farm families that have sued Jackson County in a lawsuit.
Ms. Schulz omits several important facts about the GMO crop ban and the lawsuit brought by her family.
The federal judge presiding over that case ruled in favor of the defendants including Jackson County, ruling the GMO crop ban ordinance does not conflict with Oregon righ-to-farm laws. But in addition to asking to overturn the GMO crop ban, that lawsuit also demands over $4.2 million to be paid in compensation to the Schulz and Frink families. They claim that amount represents 10 years worth of hypothetical future harvest profits from a single planting of GMO alfalfa.
Alfalfa never lives for 10 years and profits are never guaranteed, so their demands are unreasonable. That money, if awarded, would ultimately come out of the pockets of Jackson County taxpayers.
Our Family Farms Coalition is not a few “neighbors in Ashland,” but represents about 150 local family farms and many hundreds more local business owners and citizens.
It is time the Schulz family drops their demands for money from Jackson County and taxpayers.