1/20 Letters to the Editor

*66, 67 would hurt small businesses*Dallas wrestling thanks community*Independence code changes bad idea*Dallas street fee assessment unfair*Property owners' concerns ignored*Support for holiday meal



66, 67 would hurt small businesses

As a local small business owner, I'm urging all Oregonians to vote "no" on Measures 66 and 67.

If these measures pass, the increase in taxes will force many small businesses to close their doors. Many of us small business owners are already on tight budgets.

Measures 66 and 67 target a small percentage of Oregon businesses and will increase taxes by more than 40 percent. Oregon small business owners are already reporting business taxes on our personal tax returns.

This country was founded by entrepreneurial people. Don't contribute to the demise of the American small businessperson by additional taxes.

Kathy Woodin, owner

Dale Woodin Concrete Inc.

Dallas

Dallas wrestling thanks community

A big thank you to all Dallas community members who answered Janet Brunner's call again to assist with our tournament on Saturday, Jan. 9.

Thanks for pitching in and making our 10-team tournament run as smooth as silk.

It's great to see people who have been affiliated with Dragon wrestling throughout the past several decades give back. A great tourney and great people.

Tony Olliff

Dallas

Independence code changes bad idea

The Independence City Council just voted to make drastic building code changes.

These changes are not brought about to make homes in Independence safer from earthquakes, fires, terrorists or high winds. No. These changes are solely being made for aesthetic reasons, just to make the houses look a certain style.

The new code will mandate the shape, siding, windows, trim ... everything that is part of the outside of your house.

Now in our great and free country, how can this be happening? Have we not fought for our freedom in many wars? Is not property ownership and the right to build the kind of home we want part of that freedom package?

Apparently not, at least in Independence.

"Independence." Don't think of it as the name of a town, but the noun, as in the quality of being independent. Maybe the day, as July 4, Independence Day.

So feel free to build a house in "Independence," as long as you don't mind building the style of home that the city dictates you can build.

Gee, Independence is starting to sound like the governments we fought to preserve our freedom.

Mancil Russell

Independence

Dallas street fee assessment unfair

Here we go again. Another fee (Dallas street maintenance fee) that targets property owners. If we have a water bill, we pay more than others.

Let's make this fee fair. Whoever has a street address or post office box will have to pay the fee.

We have hundreds of apartment and modular home dwellers who use the streets. Let them start paying as well. It's only fair.

Joyce Coonrod

Dallas

Property owners' concerns ignored

I read with interest the letter in the Jan. 13 issue of the Itemizer-Observer regarding an attempt to force a creek-side trail onto the property owners in Dallas ("Dallas creek path is ill-advised idea"). This has been an ongoing issue in the Independence and Monmouth area for some time.

Independence has a plan for a trail along Ash Creek, and has begun to build a short segment of it on the north side of Talmadge Middle School on school district property.

Affected property owners along Ash Creek have been ignored while trying to bring safety issues and concerns to the Independence City Council. Now the citizens of Monmouth have an opportunity to have some say in the placement of the Monmouth portion of the trail, as officials are now "rethinking" the path for such a trail.

The "common sense" approach to such a trail seems to be one that will utilize existing infrastructure, such as streets and highways. Utilizing existing streets and highways would dramatically reduce costs, keep construction out of fragile riparian zones, and respect private property.

Andrea Melendy

Independence

Support for holiday meal appreciated

We sincerely thank our parish family for its generous donations of time, food, money and gifts that helped make St. Philip Catholic Church's 18th annual Christmas Day Dinner a success.

We also thank those in the community who came to help set up, serve and clean up. Thank you to St. Philip's Knights of Columbus and St. Anne's Altar Society for their continued support of this annual event.

Thank you H-2-0 for helping with desserts. And an extra special thanks to Bert's Family Restaurant for faithfully donating all of the dressing for our meal as they do year after year.

We served 406 meals, which including guests, workers, Meals on Wheels, Sable House, and in-house guest takeout. Helpers in our "toy room" gave out 190 gifts to children attending the dinner.

We thank and appreciate the Itemizer-Observer and KWIP radio for helping with publicity.

This traditional community meal is a blessing to all involved, as we feel the love, joy and gratitude of those who may have spent the day alone or without a meal.

Thank you and God bless.

Connie DeHaan

St. Philip Catholic Church

Dallas

Monmouth burning ban is necessary

I'm prompted to write a rebuttal to comments made by persons in favor of continued backyard burning during the Jan. 5 Monmouth City Council meeting.

First, smoke is poison to breathe, whether from vehicle exhaust, cigarettes or backyard burn piles. I'm sure you're all familiar with the respiratory ailments and diseases caused or aggravated by smoke.

Second, no one has the right to jeopardize my (or anyone's) health by forcing me to breathe smoke for their convenience.

Third, the recently completed garbage and debris removal contract between the city of Monmouth and Brandt's Sanitary Service provides ample space for backyard debris for the vast majority of subscribers. If a resident has extensive property debris, he or she needs to plan for added expense for maintenance and hauling of the debris. That's the expense of having an unusually large lot.

Fourth, numerous cities in the Willamette Valley have been enlightened to backyard burning by banning it. Monmouth will not be plowing new ground by also banning it completely.

I trust you will ban backyard burning and become the latest to be enlightened and health conscious.

Paul Sieber

Monmouth

City was devious with its fee plan

I am writing regarding the guest column in last week's Itemizer-Observer about Dallas street fees by Jerry Wyatt. I take exception to several statements he makes.

He states that there have been years of discussions. Maybe behind closed doors, but not in full public view.

If there had been years of open discussions about this issue, it would not have been such a surprise to the community when the city management rolled out its ridiculous multifaceted plan to collect street repair taxes.

If there had been such an open dialogue with the community, the city council would have sought opinions from those they serve about a process that would have brought them to a different conclusion. It is not likely that the council would not have endeavored such a convoluted and confusing formula that got the entire community up in arms.

The push-back on that plan was severe and the message was clear from that point, that the community did not support passing a "fee" that could be changed by a council resolution at any time without the vote of the people.

The council moved forward, anyway, after substantially reducing the impact of its plan to the large businesses in the city by creating a flat fee across all residential and business occupancies.

This flat fee is adjusted each year until it reaches $5.50 per month, but can be modified by resolution at any time the council sees fit.

This is not only a bad time in our economy to institute a bad plan, but also a bad policy of taxing.

This tax does not fund repairing the city streets, because it is not enough according to the math that was presented in the plan last fall.

Where will your city management get the money next?

Craig Pope

Americans For Prosperity

Monmouth

I-O staffers poured hearts into feature

Thank you so much for the "Sounds of Silence" story featured in last week's Itemizer-Observer. The article brought sunshine and happiness into our home on a dark and dreary wintry day.

Jolene Guzman and Adam Korst showed us all that meeting little Ben's family and spending time with them was a labor of love instead of a just another day's assignment. We readers were able to follow the Casalegno family and Ben through his recent surgery and recovery.

With stories of all the devastation and toll of human lives in Haiti, as well as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, it is sheer joy to read of happy news and a bright future for one of our local families.

I'm looking forward to reading Part II of the story.

Patty Taylor Dutcher

Monmouth

M67 is nothing but a sales tax

The cognoscente have pined for a sales tax for a long time. Measure 67 has businesses getting it for them, only don't tell anyone.

Taxes, like water, run downhill, but the frogs like to be lied to and exploited. What else is new?

A little stinger goes with this one. Anyone who sells into a commodity market (grain, grass seed, dairy, livestock, logs and other commodities) is stuck with it. He can't pass it down. Think "family farm."

Anything else? Oh, yes. Groceries aren't exempt. Pay up, suckers.

Mark Vimont

Independence

66 and 67 smack of Communism

Measures 66 and 67 are bad for America. These bills steal from the wealthy in order to give to the poor. This creates a common class of people, or in other words, Communism.

Right now, the wealthy pay at least 30 percent of their income in taxes, while we poor people pay nothing and often receive money.

The government steals from the wealthy in order to give to the poor. So many poor people are full of greed. The only vision they have is one of stealing from the wealthy.

Vote "no" on 66 and 67. Help stop Communism.

April Pearson

Independence

Tree donations helped in two ways

On behalf of the LaCreole wrestling team and the Dallas Mat Club, I would like to thank the community of Dallas for the Christmas tree recycling on Jan. 3. Our appreciation goes out to all who donated a tree and made a donation.

This year, LaCreole wrestling was low on funds so the donations helped keep the program going. The trees were chipped and will be used around LaCreole Middle School. So, by donating, you gave to two worthy causes.

Thanks again for supporting LaCreole wrestling. We hope to see you again next year.

Cody Bibler

Dallas



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