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Readers' Letters: City should understand permit process

“City Commissioner Amanda Fritz told the neighborhood group that (developer Marty) Kehoe’s building permit application should not have been accepted, and the demolition permit should not have been issued, and that they were canceled” (NW neighbors fume as old house faces last days, May 1.)

Baloney!

A quick review of the nine different permits issued for this project shows that no fewer than 15 different city employees had some part to play in the review process. I do not understand Commissioner Fritz’s statement that a permit never should have been issued. What are all these individuals doing? Do they not understand the process? Or is Fritz simply telling the neighborhood what they want to hear?

Michael Molinaro

Southeast Portland

Almost any 99W option would help

I used to live in Yamhill County, and driving into Portland on Highway 99W was a pain and a half. I no longer live in the region, but I am baffled as to why anyone in Tigard wouldn’t want an alternative to driving on 99W (Tigard must stand up to transit bullies, guest column, April 17).

Karen Sandness

Minneapolis, Minn.

Additional streetcar plan on right track

As a supporter of all forms of mass transit, I am writing this letter in support of the Portland Streetcar. I support the city of Portland’s plans to purchase one additional streetcar and the upcoming construction that will create a double-track section at the Jasmine block near Portland State University.

Because ridership will increase dramatically with the completion of the transit bridge, both of the above are essential. The additional streetcar is necessary in order to achieve the desired headways for vehicles running in both clockwise and counterclockwise directions. The change at the Jasmine block is required because of the doubling of the number of streetcars passing one another in that area.

I would point out that, on the issue of the streetcar, the cost is a substantial savings over the cost of previous streetcars. As far as the Jasmine block is concerned, the cost of making necessary changes could not have been anticipated when the original tracks were laid.

John Sporseen

Southwest Portland

Water bureau should hook Fish

A man named “Fish” should be able to run the “water” department to the public’s satisfaction.

And, to the satisfaction of the fish.

Ronald Winner

Southeast Portland

Broken system hurts school bond chances

Sometimes you have to make difficult decisions to force positive change.

While I dread voting against education bonds, the idea that the majority of the school budgets is on the backs of homeowners in this day and age is ridiculous. Homeowners are not wealthier than renters, we just happen to own a home. Mine is in need of drastic repairs.

In the past 14 years, my property taxes have increased 125 percent. This is not a fair, sensible or logical amount of increase, and it is 100 percent due to various bonds and measures, mostly school bonds.

While the current rhetoric is that the current Beaverton School District bond (Ballot Measure 34-219, May 20 election) being tossed out to Beaverton voters for schools will not increase property taxes, it certainly will not decrease them either. If the bond fails, homeowners will see their property taxes go down for the first time in 14 years, and no one seems to mention this.

The system is broken, and it needs to be fixed. This is why I am voting “no” on the school bond in May. If a few of these bonds fail, maybe then someone will get serious about getting the system fixed.

James Maass

Beaverton

Taylor deserves District 41 support

I encourage Democrats in House District 41 to vote for Kathleen Taylor, a good friend, a good neighbor and a strong advocate for public education.

She is a smart, energetic woman who is passionate about progressive government. She has been an active leader in her family’s school foundation. She raised the money necessary to put more teachers in classrooms and maintain quality education for students.

I am a public high school teacher who has taught for 18 years in the public school system. I also have two children at Llewellyn Elementary, and our family intends to watch our daughters matriculate through Sellwood Middle School and Cleveland High School. As a public school teacher and a parent, it is great to know that we will have a champion of public education in the state Legislature if we vote for Kathleen Taylor.

She has received the endorsements of Gov. John Kitzhaber, former Gov. Barbara Roberts and the League of Oregon Conservation Voters. Moreover, state Rep. Carolyn Tomei endorsed Taylor as the best choice for District 41.

As a native Oregonian, I know those endorsements are meaningful. Kathleen Taylor is the right vote for District 41.

Andrew Duden

Southeast Portland

Voters should send Taylor to Salem

I have known Kathleen Taylor for the past eight years, and I know that if she is elected as state representative in District 41, she will be one of the hardest-working education advocates we’ll have in Salem. I have worked with Taylor in the PTA at our children’s primary school and on the foundation board of our children’s middle school, and I have seen the passion and dedication she puts into her work.

Taylor approaches education issues from not only a parent’s perspective, but also the perspective of a government management auditor. Taylor has worked as an auditor at the state, county and city levels of government, where she has helped ensure our tax dollars are being spent effectively on the critical services, like education, that are important to our community.

I hope you’ll join me in voting for Kathleen Taylor on May 20. Our kids’ schools deserve a strong advocate, and we can count on Taylor to deliver.

Monica Harding

Southeast Portland

Is that your bag? Get closer to find out

It seems to me that there is a very simple reason why people don’t stand back — everyone’s bag looks the same (At baggage claim, it’s survival of the fittest, March 27). Even if you have a distinctive luggage tag or ribbon on the handle of your suitcase, there’s a decent chance that it will not be visible as the bag approaches.

I regularly have to turn over bags on the belt and check the name on the bar code sticker to know for sure if it’s mine or not. You can’t do that from eight feet away.

John Kutasz

Southeast Portland