Letters to the Editor Feb. 20, 2013

By The Curry Coastal Pilot February 20, 2013 11:14 am

the best for business

There was a sentence in Wednesday’s Pilot that “the Brookings Merchants Association has stated it has no faith in the Chamber in promoting the town.” 

I’ve been a member of the BMA since its inception four years ago, and served on the Board of Directors for three of those years. The BMA has never made that statement, nor has that ever been the BMA’s position. 

The BMA’s mission statement is that the “Brookings Merchants Association is an organization of business people In the Heart of Brookings whose primary mission is to help one another maximize their business potential by a common unity of purpose, believing the concept of good business promotes good business.” 

While it is certainly more entertaining to believe the worst of people, fueled by rumors and innuendo, the truth is that the Brookings Merchants Association wants only what is best for our local businesses, and is not in competition with, nor at odds with, the Brookings Harbor Chamber of Commerce. In fact, the BMA has and still has Board Members that serve on both the BMA and Chamber of Commerce Boards.

As with any organization, there are differences of opinion in both philosophy and methodology, but it is in all of our best interests to work together for the common good, and that is what the BMA has done for the past four years. 

Candice Michel

Brookings

hail to the chief

I am a former Marine officer who had the honor of commanding Lima Company, 3rd Battalion, 26th Marine Regiment in Vietnam from 1966 to 1967. 

If I had been out on a company operation and one of my fire teams, squads, or platoons came under attack, and I did nothing for five and one half hours; one of two things would have, and rightfully should have happened to me after four marines were killed. 

•I would have been fragged (killed or wounded) by one of my own men before returning to the battalion command post;

•If I had made it back to battalion alive, I would have been relieved of my command and faced a General Court Martial for dereliction of duty and abandonment of troops in the face of the enemy; 

And if, before my trial, I had appeared on public TV and admitted to the host that the situation my marines were in “was not optimal,” that statement would have sealed my fate before I went to trial. Impeachment is 100 percent in order. 

Hail to the chief!

William F. Farrell 

Capt. USMC (Resigned)

Brookings

beekeeper buzz

The South Coast Oregon Beekeepers Association (SCOBA) is pleased to announce its official affiliation with the Oregon Beekeepers Association. 

Charter members are Del Barber, Mindy Hamilton, Amanda Cooke, Jim Sorber, Carla Fletcher, Myrna Barber and Joe Thomas. Curry County is the home for SCOBA with a membership count of more that a dozen local beekeepers. 

The key topics for the February meeting are swarm traps and hive type comparisons. President Del Barber will demonstrate top bar hives and Vice President Carla Fletcher will demonstrate standard Langstroth hives. The OSCBA will meet on Thursday, Feb. 21, 2013, 6 p.m., at the OSU Extention Office located at the Fairgrounds, Ellensburg Avenue, Gold Beach. Meetings are open to anyone interested in learning more about honey bees. It is not necessary to own a hive to join or attend meetings. 

For further information contact This e-mail address is being protected from spam bots, you need JavaScript enabled to view it  

Myrna Barber 

secretary

Oregon South Coast Beekeepers Association

generous support

The Pregnancy Care Center would like to extend a very special thank you to Sac’s Thrift Avenue for their generous support of the Pregnancy Care Center. 

On Wednesdays each week, the proceeds from both the Brookings and Crescent City locations go to benefit the work of the Pregnancy Care Center.  

Sac’s Thrift Avenue is open 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. In Brookings they are located at 704 Chetco Avenue and in Crescent City they are located at 1150 9th Street. Stop by and see the wonderful selection of items available.

Patty DeMartin

Pregnancy Care
Center, Brookings/

Crescent City

more, better care

Sutter Health’s decision to regionalize (taking ownership of our hospital) would give them permission to turn our hospital to a Critical Care Hospital and that would be a very bad decision for our communities.

Downsizing to a critical Care Hospital would be particularly difficult for the needs of our elderly and low income, especially if transported out of our area.

We are isolated communities and need more and better health care.

Sutter Health as a not-for-profit organization should be concerned more about us and our health care than more profit for themselves. Their decision to regionalize is really about Money, not health care!

Jackie Simonsen

Crescent City

harborite’s tax math 

This letter is about the additional taxes that our commissioners want implement to sustain Brookings/Harbor. 

The commissioners’ suggested increase for Habor residents is $1.97 per thousand assessed value on top of the current assessed value we pay according to them of 59 cents which, after looking at my 2012 tax bill, does not reflect the additional education and general government add-ons which increases my cost to .66.6 per thousand assessed value which would mean a grand total of $2.63 per thousand. 

I don’t know about the rest of our tax-paying residents, but this would mean my taxes would increase more than four times what I currently pay. 

I don’t care whether you’re working or retired, no one could possibly afford this quantum leap in their budget. Plus, our commissioners have increased their yearly budget from $3.6 to $4.7 million. If they are truly cutting back, why are they asking for an additional 1.1 million over our current budget? Is that increase built into the budget to cover the matched funds needed for the airport? 

If Brookings/Harbor is broke because we will no longer receive government funding, why would our commissioners even consider additional costs to the taxpayers for the incorporation and expansion of the airport? 

The commissioners need to focus on bringing in new businesses and how to work smarter. 

J.G. Cessna 

Harbor

wait-see disaster?

Senators Wyden and Merkley’s Wilderness Protection Bills add 60,000 more acres to the Wild Rogue Wilderness and grabs 143 miles of tributaries that feed the Rogue River. 

These sponsors indicate bald eagles, osprey, spotted owl, bear, elk and cougar will be protected as well as salmon (coho, Chinook, and steelhead) fisheries and green sturgeon. This bill is to protect “countless species of plants and animals, economic benefits to surrounding communities and recreational opportunities for Oregonians and visitors.” 

An historic note here: 550,000 acres of unmaintained pure wilderness was allowed to burn in the Biscuit Fire, 2002. Because no homes were threatened in the early stages of the fire storm, it was just allowed to burn out and kill not only protected vast public trust of prime timber land but every living animal and plant. 

Will this added timber and feeder tributaries just provide more wait and see disaster? Have any of you heard of Agenda Twenty One? If not, you should know because it is surprisingly snuggled up to and fostered in this bill and other actions and bills. 

Doug Bewall 

Gold Beach

keep their promises

Is anyone else is as frustrated as I am with politicians who say one thing to get elected then almost as soon as they are sworn in they do exactly the opposite? 

I am speaking specifically about the county commissioners and their decision to place on a ballot proposing a property tax increase. If that’s not bad enough, they try browbeating the one member who had enough character to stand behind what she promised the citizens. 

I went to a meeting and listened to the then-candidates state, for all to be heard, that they were AGAINST any increase in taxes. Mr. Brock Smith even came to my door and reiterated how we have a spending problem and we have all of these resources available and went on to tell me how he was AGAINST implementing a sales tax or raising taxes. If you noticed, he was one of the commissioners who attempted to convince Ms. Brown to go back on her promise so they could present a “united front.” 

Personally, I think that any promises candidates make should be contractual and if they go against their promises, they are automatically fired. 

Debra Blanda

Brookings

lower the overhead

It seems that a tax increase is fine as long as someone else pays it. 

A sales tax will not only be a tax but will increase the cost of the product being sold because of the increased cost of bookkeeping and paperwork. A property tax increase could be done on a system that is currently in place It would increase motel rates and campground rates, therefore if tourists decided to stay in Curry County they would pay part of the tax. 

How about considering a third option: lowering the overhead. Curry County has less people than many major cities in Oregon. They manage with one school superintendent, one police chief, and one fire chief. Why do we need at least 4 separate police and fire departments and multiple school districts? Why not use substations for one sheriff, one fire department, and one school district? 

True, it would cost administrative jobs, but it could also add more police officers, more teachers, and far less high-priced administrators. I don’t know how many school superintendents or police chiefs or fire chiefs are in the county, but I would bet there is room for streamlining the system and saving money while increasing public safety and teacher shortages. 

Think about it.

Carolyn Smith

Gold Beach

get county manager

I agree with Andrew T. Ragan (Pilot Letters Feb. 9, 2013). The cost of three commissioners, whose only qualifications are the ability to win an election, is $300,000-plus, including overhead. They have health insurance, a luxury most residents either pay for, or do not have. 

Replacing the paid commissioners with a professional county manager would not solve the whole budget shortfall but it would make a start. We could have three elected volunteers to represent the electorate. 

If these paid commissioners will not agree to be volunteers I will offer my services. 

Bottom line, I will not vote for any tax increase while we pay the commissioners. 

Roger Mitchell 

Brookings

two option option

Laying aside all arguments whether we should increase Curry County revenues from a property tax or from a sales tax, perhaps we can reach a consensus!

Can’t we put two measures on the May 21 ballot, instead of one measure? One measure would be to vote for a property tax; the other measure would be to vote for a sales tax. Let the people speak for their choice!

The measure with the most votes in favor would take effect ... provided the votes required for passage are received.

If we are to have a tax increase, it seems sensible to let the people decide by which method!

Don Johnson

Brookings