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Letters to the Editor

Aug. 7, 2013 edition


College president thanks community for its continued support

To the editor:

I’d like to thank our communities for their continued support during this past legislative session. The result of our collective efforts was an increase in the Community College Support Fund for the first time in five years. While funding still remains at 2005 levels, the tide has at least turned. In addition, we have secured $16 million in matching funds for two capital construction projects supporting job creation and learning innovation for our district.

The community responded to our call for support in a variety of ways, by writing letters and making phone calls to our legislators or testifying before key committees. Our students played an important role as well, taking time out of their demanding schedules to travel to Salem and meet personally with our legislators. Each voice made a difference in telling the community college story.

Clackamas Community College legislators delivered on their promise to our district for education and job development support. I want to personally thank the members of CCC’s legislative delegation, along with the entire Legislature for demonstrating their belief in community colleges. Our legislators understand the critical role community colleges play in meeting job training and educational goals in our district.

The results of the modest increase in operational funding helps CCC as we expand student access and completion by delivering the first two years of a four-year degree and technical education leading to family-wage jobs. The capital matching funds dedicate $8 million toward facility improvements at the Harmony Community Campus and $8 million for advanced industrial education at the Oregon City Campus.

Thank you again for your support.

President Joanne Truesdell

Clackamas Community College

Recent letter danced around the topic of voter approval

To the editor:

Last week’s out-of-town writer, Randy Carragher, in comparing Mayor Hodson with past Canby mayors, carefully danced around this most important question: Why did those former mayors refuse to grant Canby citizens the right to vote on costly urban renewal projects that impact our livability? Answers to that would have been a great service to this community.

Because, for example, if Mayors Carson and Thompson had shown such a level of respect for Canby citizens, today the library issue would be settled. It’s as simple as that. There’d be no name-calling, no lies, no petty rudeness, because the folks who pay the bills would have rightfully decided the outcome. Could it be that Carragher’s heroes didn’t trust the citizens to make those decisions?

In contrast, here’s some really great news. Recently, though unheralded and unpublished, some new city leaders have stated that they believe in the people of Canby, that the people of Canby deserve the right to vote on issues that affect their livelihood. How cool is that?

Can you dig that kind of refreshing leadership, Mr. Carragher? Do they do that in OC or Silverton or wherever? Or do some arrogant city leaders still make every decision for those pesky, uninformed citizens?

Finally, an important question remains unanswered: Why have Canby taxpayers been denied the right to vote on such serious financial matters? There must be good reasons for this, and Canby citizens deserve to hear them. It would be quite the revelation if former Mayors Carson and Thompson, as well as URA Chair Ares, stepped forward to tell us why this was never accomplished during their many years of city leadership.

Perhaps our editor will facilitate and publish this. It would be the valuable public service piece that good ol’ Randy Carragher missed.

Bob Backstrom

Canby

Facts are most certainly in dispute concerning library and mayor

To the editor:

There have been some serious errors in the Canby Herald regarding the library. For starters, Canby taxpayers have never been given the right to vote on any urban renewal project.

In addition, claims of overwhelming public involvement in planning the new library are simply not true. The library planning consisted of three meetings, with a total of 30 individual participants plus the usual city officials and library staff. And several of those 30 participants live outside the city limits and would bear no responsibility for our debt.

Thirty people out of 23,000 in our library district is an embarrassingly low turnout, if you’re truthful about it. It’s 1/1,400 of the population (.0014), a sample so miniscule as to be meaningless; it correlates and predicts nothing.

It doesn’t meet anyone’s definition of “overwhelming public support.” It does not represent Canby. To think that this tiny special-interest group nearly committed us to 25 years of debt is frightening, indeed.

Next, consider Hodson’s landslide victory over Carson — overwhelming, indisputable evidence of the peoples’ feelings about a new library — evidence that cannot be denied. Likewise, consider the powerful message in the recent county election where 70 percent of Canby demanded the right to vote on urban renewal projects.

It’s difficult for me to understand why the right to vote on pocketbook issues has never been granted to the citizens of Canby. It’s a sign of respect for the taxpayers, the very folks who pay to keep the government running. Lots of cities do it.

Finally, some city leaders have talked about referring these expensive issues to the people. We’re grateful for that. We deserve it.

Let’s all unite to make this happen. In the meantime, let’s stick to the facts, control our emotions and stop the name-calling.

Mary Anderson

Canby

(Editor’s Note: Ms. Anderson’s opening paragraph is incorrect. The Herald has nothing to do with the form of government the city of Canby has, namely, a representative form of government fashioned by the Founding Fathers. There is no provision in the Canby government for a vote on the urban renewal project, or other projects, by the people. Hence, her claim that it is a Canby Herald error, or that we’re even involved, is in fact, her error.)

Disagree: We most certainly still need libraries in this world

To the editor:

As far as "we don't need no libraries," I strongly disagree. Where is the well known fact "that our younger folk get ideas from books, and can be pretty darn dangerous? I concur anyone that kids, teens or adults can get any idea — good or dangerous ideas in books — if that is what they are looking for. Let us not forget the all mighty Internet, where most of today’s tragedy's have sprouted from.

I happen to be a longtime library patron wherever I have lived. I feel great knowledge by just walking into a library. The staff are more than generous with their time.

I do have a computer. If I had a mind to I could find absolutely "anything" online.

As far as Canby and its "new library" is concerned, I have not kept up with everything that has come down. I live in the county, outside city limits, so I cannot vote for anything that goes on in the city. A pity, really.

My response is really about how valuable a library can be and is here in Canby. I have lived in Canby for 13 years and I have been a patron that long, and I will continue to be one.

Live long and prosper.

Lari Nickens Richardson.

Canby

Actions of mayor, several councilors can’t be condoned

To the editor:

My silence feels like I am condoning the recent actions of Mayor Hodson and the council members who recently voted to kill the library project. Nothing could be further from the truth.

Being fairly new to the Canby area, I was thrilled when the prospects of a new library were in the works. A forward-thinking and vibrant community! A library, contrary to some people's thinking and even stated in previous letters to the editor, offers so much more than “just checking out books.”

The Canby library has particularly impressed me with its high quality staff and its programs.

If one pays attention to the newspaper, or looks at the listings of events at the library, one would see amazing involvement of people of all ages, a variety of areas of interest, many levels of discussion and learning. Oh my, to participate in sessions led by scholarly authors and other experienced people, to go to workshops on everything from computers to canning, to see artwork displayed I would never be exposed to otherwise — this is a library. Stories, discussions, involvement and ideas. Yes, and books, too. And research tools, knowledgeable staff, games, computers and periodicals.

To be so close to breaking ground on a vital communication-cultural enrichment center and to have it tossed aside is wrenching. And costly, too.

At least several million dollars down the drain it sounds like. Costly, too, in the devastation to so many people committed to making the new library happen.

And the nerve of Mayor Hodson, coming up with his own grand proposal at an even higher cost.

This feels to me like a setup. Let's put it up for a vote and have people defeat it so that the mayor and company can say, “See, people don't want a new library.” Is that the plan, Mayor Hodson?

Anne McKinney

Canby

Canby High production of ‘Anything Goes’ is a delight

To the editor:

As a lifelong Canby resident, I must share about the Canby Community Theatre group. Each summer they perform at the Canby High School Richard R. Brown Fine Art Center.

This summers’ show is “Anything Goes,” a musical comedy featuring Cole Porter music. It is a very funny entertaining production! There is a lot of talent on the stage and in the orchestra pit. I do go to Portland at least once each year to see a Broadway show, and this show is just as entertaining for just a $10 ticket.

The profits from the show stay in Canby to support and maintain the auditorium, so this is a win-win situation for Canby. Do not miss the final shows this Thursday, Friday and Saturday at 7 p.m.

Phyllis (Kraxberger) Adams

Canby




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