Letters to the Editor April 30, 2014

By The Curry Coastal Pilot April 29, 2014 08:21 pm

8-76 misinformation

The Home Rule Charter has become a major issue since District Attorney Everett Dial wrote his “White Paper Regarding the Curry County Charter” and it has proved very useful to the current commissioners who oppose Home Rule. I was surprised to read the opinion of Mr. Dial regarding the issue of five versus four part-time commissioners. Mr. Dial signed off on the Home Rule Ballot Title, and now before the election he finds serious issues with the charter. I cannot help believing that his Office is being misused for purely political reasons. 

Ballot Measure 8-76 requires five part-time commissioners and Mr. Dial’s interpretation of four part-time commissioners is both misleading and incorrect. It appears that the last sentence of Chapter VI section 63 in the Charter was intentionally omitted:“The two added commissioners shall be elected separately at the first county-wide election following the effective date of this charter.” (November 4, 2014) I would ask Mr. Dial to provide written compelling evidence to support his claim. 

The Home Rule Charter, lawfully formed by the citizens of Curry County, does not depend on self-interest and self-preservation. If Ballot Measure 8-76 passes, July 1, 2014, the $10,000 stipend will take effect immediately for both newly elected and current commissioners plus whoever wins Itzen’s seat.

In the end, it does not matter who is for or against, what matters most is that decisions are made based on facts not questionable misinformation coming from the Office of the district attorney. 

Ian Maitland


Informing voters

The League of Women Voters is different!

We are a neutral source of election information.

The League of Women Voters of Curry County never opposes or supports candidates running for office. This policy applies to the County commissioner and the Circuit Court contests in this May’s election.

While the League sometimes takes positions on ballot measures, the League has chosen to take no position on Home Rule Charter Measure 8-76.

We have produced balanced educational materials comparing the County General Law and Home Rule forms of governments. These are available at the public libraries and online at www.Vote411.org. 

We believe that an informed electorate is the best source of good government. We encourage all citizens to study the issues and vote in this and every election.

Al Wilson, president

League of Women Voters

Headline incorrect

I was disappointed in your headline on April 26 saying “Cover Oregon Ends in Failure.” This headline simply is not correct. 

On page 9A that same article states that more than 242,000 Oregonians have enrolled in plans through Cover Oregon, including 70,000 Oregonians enrolled in private plans and more than 172,000 into Oregon Health Plan.  

Also in the same article, George Brown cited “significant success” in getting Oregonians enrolled into health insurance despite the website problems. And, when the transition is made to the Federal exchange this fall, people will still be able to apply for healthcare. Just through a different portal.

The article explains that Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will maintain a consumer website portal and continue serving consumers with application assistance, outreach, and education. If a person currently qualifies for the Oregon Health Plan under Cover Oregon, then that person will still qualify for healthcare coverage in the fall, when the system moves to the Federal exchange. And, that person can still enroll in Oregon Health Plan all year round. 

So how can this be a failure? I would expect the Curry Pilot to assign a different, more accurate headline instead of declaring Cover Oregon a failure.   Please consider this.

Lauren Diane 



County vision is key

As a public servant who has experienced working under the current County Governance system and a “home rule” type system with a city manager at the city of Brookings, I don’t hesitate to vote yes on measure 8-76. 

In my nine years working for Curry County I experienced many changes in leadership and with each of those changes came a new direction in the vision of County services. These changes were not necessarily for the overall good of Curry County but often based on small, special interests. We have had many good people serve as County commissioners but there is no denying that once in, that salary is pretty appealing to hang on to. 

The desire to be popular sometimes results in elected officials demanding that staff give special treatment to powerful friends. I butted heads with several commissioners over the years due to my refusal to participate in this and can honestly say that in my 15 years with the city of Brookings I have never been asked to do so. During my tenure with the city I have experienced working under five city managers but because they were professional businessmen (sadly no women ... yet!) the basic vision of the city’s future never changed significantly. 

Continuity is essential to success and stability in business; join with me in voting yes on 8-76 to give Curry County stable and professional leadership for future success. The thoughts and opinions in this letter are my own and not intended to be construed as an opinion of the city of Brookings.

LauraLee Snook


For a 3-year tax

My husband and I own a home there in Brookings, and each time we receive our Pilot by mail, I go first to the front page of the Pilot to read the newest news, then after reading it, my second choice is the letters to the editor. I like seeing residents’ and others’ feelings. 

What I have read so much about is the problem of money needed for various departments in Curry County and mostly for Brookings. Taxes, little or not, would help, especially for Sheriff’s Department and other departments of urgency. Safety is very important for all when it is needed, and our people of Curry County should realize that. 

Now, my opinion is a sales tax for three years; we guarantee in writing that after paying sales tax on products, not food — that after the three years the sales tax stops; and things go back to normal. 

What I feel is that we, the residents, and others is that the county/city/town officials will not stop the sale tax, and that scares the people. 

Another thing: Your commissioners are being paid too high a salary. If people tighten their belts, so should some officials. 

These are bad times for most everyone, but it is possible in three years things could change. Three years to pay a little toward sales tax could for one protect our Sheriff’s Department, the running of our jails, etc. 

Think about it: Save Oregon, that’s most important!

Mrs. Virginia Cunha 

Corralitos, California

Not the economics

In response to the letter by R.H. Morneau Jr.:

I am not a candidate for the proposed county administrator position in Curry County. I voluntarily left a higher paying job to relocate to the Oregon Coast. Many of us in Curry County live here for reasons other than economic enrichment.

That may well be what we will find if the county recruits for a county administrator. Actually, the challenge may be the attraction. I will be happy to help the county commissioners recruit and select the best candidate for the job.

Concerning “secretaries” and other support staff, lean budgets and new technology has resulted in major changes. The days of managers dictating letters or turning hand-written compositions over to secretaries to “type up” are gone. The Brookings city recorder provides administrative support when needed by me or the city council. But most of her job involves work like preparing contracts, writing ordinances and managing the website.

Managers are expected to be more productive and to rely less on support staff. Those who  perform “support staff” functions are expected to “multi-task.”  Such is the case with the Brookings Geographic Information System technician, who also takes planning commission meeting minutes.

I am privileged to work with an outstanding group of managers, support staff, field staff and volunteers here at the city of Brookings.

Gary Milliman,

manager, city of Brookings

No on Measure 8-76

I agree with Kathi Lindsay regarding her letter on April 23. 

I feel that 8-76 is a fatally flawed measure and that it would not be good for our county. Before you vote, you need to look into this measure. I’ve been looking into it for some time now, and my vote is no on Measure 8-76. As one president said: “use good horse sense.”

“Failure to prepare is preparing to fail” — Mike Murdock

I endorse Cynthia Beaman for Circuit Court judge. I’ve worked with Cindi within the community and she is dedicated in whatever she does. I hope I never have to appear in front of her!

God Bless America — Home of the Brave and Land of the Free

Sam Vitale


Frogs come home

Whoever found a frog bracelet and turned it into Fred Meyer: A million thanks — honesty still lives. 

Thank you, thank you!

Frog Lady 

Myra Martin


More grist

The big green building in the port is an attractive nuisance — a liability waiting to happen. 

There is no money to complete it and no money to tear it down. Why not ask local fire officials to conduct a controlled burn? A perfect training tool to free up that land. 

Also, the World News reports that in Finland they are coating the reindeer horns with a glow in the dark substance that keeps them visible for tracking, etc., at night. Probably would work on elk too.

J. Jordan


Bruin Bash Auction

It is that time of the year when the parents of high school seniors are putting together the Bruin Bash Auction to benefit the Safe N Sober Graduation Party. 

The auction is a fun event where many items are donated by local businesses. This year’s committee had a bit of a setback when all our mail was returned to sender due to a clerical error. Anyone wishing to help contribute to this great cause is encouraged to contact the Safe N Sober Committee and we’ll get your donations. The Bruin Bash Auction is scheduled for May 10 at the BHHS cafeteria. Desserts will be provided and there will be silent and live auction items available. We appreciate all the generous donations from the community.

Safe N Sober Graduation Party encourages our graduating seniors to safely enjoy this passage into the next phase of their lives! The party is an all-night event the same day as the graduation ceremony. Please let us know if you have any questions. Call 541-469-0525.

Val Early

Safe N Sober Auction Committee

Brookings Harbor High School

Relaford, 8-76 for me

I have been privileged to attend four forums in the cities of our beautiful coast. I have heard the candidates four times. I have heard the debate regarding the Charter proposal four times. 

Thanks to the League of Women Voters and to the Tea Party for sponsoring such thorough coverage of our county issues. Thanks to the speakers for showing up. A good job was done by all. 

As a result of listening, I’ve decided to vote for Jim Relaford and Measure 8-76. Although Phil Dickson, husband of our present director of Administration/Economic Development, told me countless times to protect my right to vote for the clerk, the assessor, the treasurer and the surveyor, he didn’t tell me how those jobs are screened, other than popularity, or how the holders of the offices are evaluated. 

Mr. Dickson’s message is simple and repetitious. “Vote NO. Wait.” That’s a good political ploy, simplicity and repetition; I’ll give him credit for that. But I was fooled at the last election by a Port Orford candidate who promised to take the recommendations of the Citizen’s Committee. He didn’t. This time I want more. 

I’m not sure why the citizens of Curry County should wait any longer. Are we waiting for another tax proposal? My copy of Measure 8-76 describes a more efficient form of government, a real step forward, now. Don’t wait. Vote Yes on 8-76.

Janet Richey 


Not a ‘good ‘ol boy’

On April 23 I attended the Candidate Forum at the Chetco library. I listened to all of the candidates’ presentations and the Q&A. It is clear to me the best person to represent the citizens of Curry County as their commissioner is Thomas Huxley. 

Mr. Huxley has proven, documented, and successful business management skills. He has been an active citizen-participant at numerous County commissioner meetings. He continues to document the proceedings of those meetings on his website: currycountytaxes.com. If any citizen with access to the Internet wants to see what happens or does not happen with county government, go to Mr. Huxley’s website. 

One of Mr. Huxley’s strengths is he is not part of the local establishment. He is a relative newcomer to Curry County with an educated, experienced newcomer’s point of view. He is not part of the local special interest groups of good-old-boys and good-old-girls and their puppets in the political arena. These people want to keep and maintain the status-quo, feather their own nests at the taxpayers’ expense, and play the blame game when they get scrutinized. 

We need Thomas Huxley as our commissioner. 

John M. Johnson


Judge the opponent

We, the people, face challenges in our daily lives that we are not immune from. However, in the recent judicial race, affecting both Coos and Curry counties, it seems feathers are being ruffled and I get a feeling that some think judges should run unopposed. 

Since 2008 there have been over 70 incumbent judges on the ballot for Oregon voters. Only three of those positions were challenged with an opponent. It appears that once elected, the position of judge becomes a life sentence of guaranteed employment, never again having to answer to the voters who pay their salary. In some cases, the governor may appoint the position if it becomes vacant mid-term and the judge appointed may never answer to the voters. 

In the judicial race this year in Coos and Curry counties, an incumbent who was appointed by the governor has never had to run against an opponent for her position. Shala McKenzie Kudlac is challenging her. I have confidence that the voters of Coos and Curry counties will not simply, and blindly, follow those who believe they are immune from scrutiny, that voters will do their research and realize that the challenger is qualified, experienced and ready to go to work to improve our communities. 

Our Constitution is in place for a reason and any one person has the right to run against an incumbent for any position they choose. We teach our children to work hard and they can achieve anything. We don’t tell them the underdog never wins. 

Join me in voting for Shala McKenzie Kudlac for 15th District Circuit Court judge, Position 6. 

Tanya Casady