One of the outstanding attributes of Washington County is the collaboration we see between private citizens, private businesses and our elected public officials. Collaboration and communication is a hallmark of this county, and it has earned the admiration and envy of other political entities across the country.

Washington County’s elected officials listen to their constituencies, and our private employers listen to their communities. That said, Intel is on the right track in dealing with the current issue it faces regarding fluoride emissions (Activists targeting Intel, Oct. 31).

Intel company officials are addressing the omission in reporting. They have provided a vehicle for citizens to convey information regarding environmental issues (Explore Intel,, and they are taking input from the community regarding their concerns.

Intel is also on the right track by reconvening its community advisory panel of professionals, continuing its outreach to neighbors near its production facilities in the Hillsboro area, and dealing directly with residents and community organizations who have expressed their concerns. The public spoke, Intel listened, and now there are plans for working together on the issue.

In Washington County, elected officials have demonstrated their collaborative mindset when preparing the supplemental budget for this fiscal year’s Gain Share projects. The citizens’ concern over school funding was shared by officials in Washington County and led to a $3 million budget allocation for Washington County school districts.

We all know when collaboration is not in effect. It shows up in failures, in news headlines, and in broken relationships.

We don’t always see collaboration when it is right before us, but we can identify teams, communities and even geo/political networks that are effective in reaching their goals because they build trust with each other, work together and collaborate on issues.

Well known as a builder of successful teams, Vince Lombardi said, “Individual commitment to a group effort — that is what makes a team work, a company work, a society work, a civilization work. “

My thanks and praise go to Washington County and Intel for valuing and embracing collaboration. I am proud to live and work in this county.

Pamela Treece

Executive Director, Westside Economic Alliance


Let’s avoid another bridge-naming fiasco

As to the matter of the naming of the new transit bridge over the Willamette River (Lisa Simpson Bridge? D’Oh!, Nov. 7), undoubtedly the Oregon Department of Transportation has rules regarding the naming of bridges that the populace is unaware of, as all but two of the local Willamette River auto bridges are named after roads that connect to them, with the other two being connected to neighborhoods.

It would then make sense that such a bridge would be named after either a connecting road (Moody, Porter, Sherman, even though being a nonautomobile bridge, the street becomes somewhat irrelevant); a connecting neighborhood; or a person who has been a known champion of private-vehicle alternatives (former Mayor Sam Adams being the only one I personally know of, not being a City Hall or county insider) or an uplifting concept directly related to the promotion of transit.

For the latter, I would agree that the “Bridge Lady” would probably be the most qualified person (outside of ODOT) to represent what a bridge should be named. And indeed, Sharon Wood Wortman did just that with her “Freedom” submission, so similar to my own “Hope” submission. Who would be more qualified to know than the Bridge Lady herself?

And let us hope that we do not engage in such a situation to create confusion and animosity as which occurred in the naming of the Glenn Jackson bridge (Interstate 205 over the Columbia River). I remember well the situation, having been involved at the time in Clark County government and the Growth Management Board.

It was no small point of animosity for folks in the “Couv.” Funding had been found for the entire bridge from federal and Washington State dollars, without any contribution from Oregon (Oregon paid only for its own on/off ramps, and that begrudgingly), and delayed the bridge opening by an additional full year until Washington allowed Oregon (which had contributed nothing) the full control to name the bridge. And then Oregon went and named it after a person known only to 250 people (at the time!) This was angrily argued about for years afterward, back and forth across the river.

To this date, the majority of folks on both sides of the river just call it the “205 Bridge.”

So this time around, let’s name the bridge after someone or something we all know and recognize.

James Lear

Northeast Portland

Contract Publishing

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