Incorporate Oak Lodge; Don't ruin Happy Valley; Fix walk button; Keep funding diabetes research

An open letter to the Clackamas County commissioners and the Clackamas County Planning Commission re the approval of a three-story storage facility in Oak Grove: There is ever-increasing evidence that we have become a society bereft of common sense. I've kept a copy of an obituary for years and have even shared it on Facebook and other places. It is in fact, an "Obituary for Common Sense."

The county recently approved construction of a three story storage facility across from Fred Meyer in Oak Grove. That property includes a parcel once owned by my in-laws. From the architect's drawings the facility looks strangely like a ma,usoleum. Now, I'm wondering if the county would have approved the project if it had been designated as a "final resting place for human remains." Here's the irony, the approved project will be the final resting place for the "human remains" the late comedian, George Carlin, referred to as "stuff." A storage place for stuff people no longer have room for but are not sure they will ever use again. Admittedly, I'm one of those people, but I have a garage for that.

My point is in questioning if this a good use for premium property that could be used to attract desperately needed destination businesses for the McLoughlin Corridor to survive? I've lived here off and on for seven decades and can think of only one person who really had a vision for the potential of this community. The late Art Lacey, founder, and owner of The Bomber. People came from every state in the Union to see the B-17g proudly displayed on the west side of Southeast McLoughlin Boulevard. They came from several countries as well. Conversely, I can only think of one county commissioner in all those years, who has really cared about the future of this area. He serves us today, and his vision makes sense.

Residents of Oak Lodge really need to get the message we are getting from all five of the commissioners. If you want to determine your own destiny, incorporate! How many more "mausoleums" are we going to see constructed in our community before we get the message?

G.F. "Gary" Blair

Oak Grove

Don't ruin Happy Valley

I write to convey my fervent opposition to an upcoming ballot measure, #3-518 that will appear in voters' mailboxes in mid-October. The measure is written to consider annexation, but really it is a referendum on development that is not consistent with stated Happy Valley values.

The planned assisted-living facility will tower 65 feet above the street and will contain over 200,000 square feet of space. This monstrous construction will be less than 50 feet from private homes. It will ruin the look and feel of the neighborhood into which it is proposed.

As a community, Happy Valley residents must oppose development that is in direct conflict with the city's mission statement. Allowing a developer to build a huge facility of ANY kind, let alone one for memory care patients in the middle of a planned community is not in keeping with the city's mission statement.

Future elderly residents will be at risk from weather-related isolation. Surrounding communities will have their traffic flows unfairly and unsafely impacted. No thought has been given to the impact this facility will have on its neighbors.

Jeffrey Albelo

Happy Valley

Why is it taking so long to fix?

It's been more than a week since an accident took out the walk button at southbound McLoughlin Boulevard and Courtney Avenue in Oak Grove.

People run across after it turns red. Does someone have to die? I don't understand, as they fixed the one at Oak Grove Boulevard immediately.

Joseph Polich

Oak Grove

Keep funding diabetes research

The Special Diabetes Program (SDP), a $150 million annual federal research effort at the National Institutes of Health, enjoys bipartisan support, but it will expire on Sept. 30 if Congress fails to renew it.

The SDP directly affects millions of Americans who struggle with diabetes, including Type 1 diabetes (T1D). In my family, we have dealt with this devastating autoimmune disease for seven decades. My grandmother had it, my father and two uncles currently live with it, and now my daughter and son are fighting it. It is a constant daily struggle to avoid deadly blood sugar complications. This is where the SDP has played a pivotal role — by fielding numerous medical breakthroughs from innovative therapies to amazing medical devices.

My father's first 40 years with T1D were difficult, but with the advent of the SDP in 1999, his blood sugar was controlled by better insulin and a glucose meter. My children's T1D journeys have benefited from faster meters, which now don't require finger sticks. Their insulin delivery went from syringes and pens to a hybrid closed loop device that combines a monitor and pump to automatically make insulin dosing decisions. Their health and quality of life have dramatically improved because of the SDP.

America cannot afford to have this research and its supporting clinical trials lapse. Our Oregon delegation is already on board — I hope the rest of Congress can hear our voices to get past procedural hurdles to renew the program!

Shamron Cook

Oregon City

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