10/10 Letters to the Editor

*Wheeler is clear choice for commissioner *Clem didn't have good attendance *Wheeler will serve county well on BOC *Clem best choice for commissioner *Candidate violating wishes of family *Wheeler has

Wheeler is clear

choice for commissioner

Jennifer Wheeler has my vote for Polk County Commissioner.

She has the background and understanding and can solve issues that affect all Polk County residents.

Since being appointed she has shown the dedication, integrity and the ability to keep Polk County moving forward. With the almost complete loss of secure school funding and the increase of the employee PERS account straining Polk County's budget, we need proven experience to fill this very important position.

This is why I see only one choice for Polk County Commissioner and Jennifer Wheeler has my vote.

Bill J. Kluting


Clem didn't have

good attendance

The Polk County Board of Commissioners appointed Dan Clem to the Fair Board of Directors in October 2003.

During his term as a board member he was absent from the meetings almost half the time. When he did show up for a meeting he was usually late, followed by an early departure.

The commissioners did not reappoint Clem to a second fair board term.

Ron Dodge


Wheeler will serve

county well on BOC

Commissioner Jennifer Wheeler has served the county well during her 13 years as secretary to the Board of Commissioners and during the past year and a half as Polk County Commissioner.

Faced with reduced revenues from all sources, Polk County continues to provide excellent services including law enforcement, fire protection, health and mental health services, as well as road maintenance.

Most importantly, Jennifer is experienced, conscientious, honest and hardworking as she has shown during her time in office.

We really need a person with her integrity in these times.

Gene Henshaw


Clem best choice

for commissioner

I'm asking you to cast your vote for Dan Clem for Polk County Commissioner, Position 1.

I have worked with Dan Clem as a member of the Oregon National Guard, Little League Baseball, city of Salem Councilor for West Salem, and many other associations for more than 40 years. I recognize the need to have commissioners who listen to all points of view, thoroughly understand the complexities of the issues and render timely decisions.

Dan Clem has a record of being fiscally responsible as well as being accountable and responsive to the citizens he serves.

Bob Elliott

West Salem

Candidate violating

wishes of family

My name is Sheri Ruegsegger, and the late Mike Propes was my brother. I am writing this letter for myself and Alice Propes, our mother.

Dan Clem, a candidate for Polk County Commissioner, is using Mike's name in his fliers and advertisements insinuating that he had Mike's support without permission from the Propes family. This is offensive, and we asked that he show respect by discontinuing this practice.

We are grateful that Jennifer Wheeler has not taken political advantage of a genuine working relationship with Mike, even though he and Jennifer actually did work together to "get projects done."

Sheri Propes Ruegsegger


Wheeler has what

we need for board

I fully support retaining Jennifer Wheeler as Polk County Commissioner.

As a former Polk County Legal Counsel I know how important experience is with the management and administration of county government. Jennifer is the only candidate who has the necessary years of extensive knowledge and the proven experience with how Polk County works -- its budgets, roads, health system and public safety departments.

Polk County needs that experience, knowledge and unquestioned principals and ethics. She knows and understands Polk County well, including West Salem where I live.

I urge all my friends and neighbors to join me in electing Jennifer Wheeler.

Wallace Lien

West Salem

Beautification work

much appreciated

I would like to thank the group or groups of people responsible for doing a cleanup and beautification at LaCreole Middle School a couple of weeks ago.

I appreciate going to work and seeing it so nice.

Thank you for all of your hard work.

Rachelle Isham


City's Main Street

idea poorly planned

The idiots at the city of Monmouth are once again adding obstructions to their Main Street. The justification being: If Independence is stupid, so shall we.

They should look at all the empty storefronts on the main street of Independence now that congestion and parking loss have taken their toll. They wouldn't feel so smug.

Someday an authority will say: "The road allowance is 60 feet." They will then have to take out those stupid obstructions at their own expense. As it stands now the fire trucks can't make those turns off the main street and service the areas on either side. They will just have to burn.

Bertran Copp


County should look

at change to PERS

The Polk County Commissioners receive richer salary and fringe benefits than politicians in many Oregon cities and special districts with larger populations and workforce.

For example:

* The City Councillors of the city of Salem, with a population of 150,000 and 1,100 employees, receive no salary, retirement or health insurance. By contrast, Polk County Commissioners serving a population of 68,000 and about 300 employees receive a full-time salary, PERS retirement, health insurance and other fringe benefits that regular employees receive.

* There is an inherit conflict of interest with commissioners receiving the same retirement and fringe benefits as employees they are charged to negotiate with to keep costs within bounds. They are in effect bargaining against their own interests by keeping benefit costs in line.

* Polk County, like other cities and local governments, hire a well-paid chief executive officer to manage the budget and details of the organization. This is like the private sector with part-time board of directors responsible for overall policies while holding the executive accountable to manage the details and achieve results. Board of directors are normally not paid as full-time employees, but receive a per-meeting stipend. They make the policies and insure that the administrator carries them out.

A change in the current expensive arrangement is needed and a lower-cost option used in the private sector and many Oregon cities should be implemented.

George Irving


Businesses made

tourney a success

Thank you to all of the businesses in Dallas, Monmouth and Independence that generously donated gift certificates and goods to the Monmouth Christian Church Golf Tournament held Sept. 23.

The funds raised will be used to help kids go to camp in the summer.

We couldn't do it without your support.

Dave Wildman


Retain Judge Hill on

Polk Circuit Court

I'm happy to support the retention of Judge Norm Hill on the Polk County Circuit Court.

Norm is widely respected as a dedicated leader, both in the community and in the legal profession. As a sitting judge, Norm is already demonstrating the knowledge and temperament of an outstanding jurist.

Polk County voters should be encouraged to retain him.

Phil Walker

West Salem

Wheeler has our

interests at heart

Please vote for Jennifer Wheeler for Polk County Commissioner.

We believe she will have your best interest, as well as the county, at heart. She is very knowledgeable of events occurring in the county and will solve them efficiently along with the other commissioners.

She served as secretary to the commissioners for many years and was well liked and respected.

We will cast our vote for Jennifer Wheeler.

Jerry and Caroline Freeman


Judge possesses

intellect, integrity

I write in support of Circuit Court Judge Norm Hill.

Heading into my 28th year of law practice I have had the privilege of appearing in many courtrooms around the state. However, with my office being in Dallas, Polk County courts are most familiar.

Judge Hill possesses the intellect and integrity that inform an outstanding judge. Coupled with good-old common sense, these qualities are evident in decisions he hands down.

Examine the qualifications of both candidates carefully, then join me in voting to retain Judge Norm Hill.

Doug Berg


Clem will work for

all of Polk County

As his campaign slogan says, "Working Together for All of Polk County," voters should elect Dan Clem Nov. 6.

Dan has previous experience in local and state government. As a city councilor for almost 10 years, he works diligently at helping residents of West Salem and Polk County. He has the experience of balancing multimillion dollar budgets, increasing public safety, improving roadways, and an advocate for youth in our community.

Dan's experience in transportation, involvement in the Third Bridge studies, mass transit, city, county, and state issues will assist in helping to move us forward for all of Polk County.

Nathan Wuerch

West Salem

Watch out for

squirrels, others

It is that time of year when the squirrels and other critters are gathering and storing their winter supplies of food. They cross our streets many times a day.

I live in Dallas and enjoy watching the squirrels from my windows and feeding them nuts and corn as others in our neighborhood do. Several litters have been born in nests in my trees.

I was very saddened and upset last week to find one of "my" squirrels had been hit and killed on the street in front of my house, the acorn he had been carrying lying next to his lifeless tiny body.

Southeast Academy Street east of LaCreole is a 25 mph speed limit. However, there are many drivers that speed, sometimes close to 45 and 50 mph. Are you the one of those speeders who hit my squirrel? Maybe if you had been going the speed limit you could have slowed down, stopped and let it cross, even if he darted out in front of you.

There are not only squirrels that cross the street; there are also pets, children, the elderly and handicapped people crossing it. If not for the squirrels, at least please slow down and drive the 25 mph speed limit for them.

Abby Irion


Candidate brings

integrity, knowledge

We in Polk County are so fortunate to have a lady of Jennifer Wheeler's stature who is willing to serve as a Polk County Commissioner.

We have known Jennifer for many years and she certainly has the best interests of the people of Polk County. Her qualities include integrity and knowledge as well as the ability to perform the duties of county commissioner.

We are voting for Jennifer Wheeler for Polk County Commissioner, Position No. 1. We hope you will also.

Bettie and Don Duhrkopf


Bad drivers deserve

to be called out

I admit it; I am responsible for the posting on the reader board at Rob's Automotive.

On a daily basis I listen to people complain; I myself see people driving in a manor that is hard to believe. People talk about "what is going on inside the heads of some drivers." So, I decided to put those thoughts on our reader board.

Keep in mind that reader boards have limited space so you have to condense, sometimes with poor grammar, leaving words out, abbreviations, symbols and so on.

The first version of the statement was "screw you/your attitude about my driving, death to those in my way."

After three people said it was too harsh a new wording was posted. "Don't care what you think about my driving just stay out' my way."

Based on people's actions the first explains the mentality of some. If you honk at them to say "that isn't cool" they flip you off, thus proving how they think. I have received responses that were in full hardy agreement that this statement reflects the attitude of too many drivers.

As a business owner you have to be mindful of what you say for fear of upsetting your customers. Personally, I think that's unfair. I wonder, how many friends would you have if every time you said something that a friend didn't like the relationship ended.

In no way do I regret calling out the bad behavior of some drivers. If more people did maybe these bad drivers would change their behavior. If you don't then don't complain as more drivers challenge your patience.

If you have thoughts or ideas you would like to share about our signs or would like to have made into a sign call or come by and discuss it with me.

Rob Smith


Clem would bring

experience to post

Now is the silly part of the campaign season, when we hear much personal backbiting, whining and nitpicking, as though such trivial things were important. They aren't. It's all nonsense.

Experience matters. Competence matters. Long-term vision matters. A demonstrated commitment to public safety as the first priority of local government matters.

A veteran himself, Dan Clem has always demonstrated his personal support for veterans of all our recent wars.

In the county commission race, Dan Clem has more of such experience than the rest of the commission together. This choice really isn't even close. Vote Dan Clem for county commissioner.

Don Homuth

West Salem

Wheeler a proven

leader for county

As a former Polk County Commissioner, I know good government is the result of wise choices. I am voting for Polk County Commissioner Jennifer Wheeler.

She is very experienced in county matters, having served Polk County citizens for 17 years and as our commissioner since April 2011.

Jennifer Wheeler has excelled in her responsibility of the proper use of county funds. Her work ethic and integrity are well known. She stands on her own merits and does not take credit for the accomplishments of others.

I encourage all voters in Polk County to vote for Commissioner Jennifer Wheeler.

Walter Gjersvold


Falls City students

step up for history

Congratulations to Falls City High School students and their parents, advisers and teachers.

On Saturday night in Falls City's beautiful Upper Park, I sat under the stars with Falls City residents and watched several videos projected on a huge inflatable screen.

The videos, about 10, were made and produced by Falls City High students over the past year. Each video/film featured one of Falls City's many historic buildings and sites.

Videos incorporated facts about Falls City's remarkable past when it was a burgeoning center of fruit production, then of timber mills, with a hospital, theater, blacksmith, five lumber mills, a power plant on the falls, hotel and more.

Students researched archives, interviewed older residents, read books and newspapers, searched the Internet, and produced stunning narratives about Falls City's history based on its existing buildings and stories from those who remember the past. Many of the older late 19th century Queen Anne-style Victorian houses have been restored; others are waiting to be saved from destruction.

The idea for the splendid project was borne out of a 1990s survey of historic properties funded by Oregon's State Historic Preservation Office (State Parks).

Falls City Historic Landmarks Commission members, parents, teachers and administrators took the lead, wrote a grant, worked with the school and the project became a reality.

The tiny school with its limited resources leaped into the project and with guidance from SHPO staff and the incredible energy and imagination of the mayor and some parents, one teacher and about eight students, after many months, produced some remarkable videos of high quality to document the history of the town and architectural past. Future projects of this quality will surely be forthcoming.

Videos are available for viewing in the Wagner Public Library in Falls City.

Randolph Osman, chairman

Falls City Historic Landmarks Commission


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