Letters to the Editor
Some of the following election-related letters arrived after our deadline for The Outlook's Friday, Oct. 30, print edition. These letters are being posted to our website, but will not appear in print because our next edition publishes on Wednesday, Nov. 4, the day after the election. From this point forward, The Outlook, Sandy Post and Estacada News are not accepting new letters or op-ed's related to the Tuesday, Nov. 3, General Election. Thank you, and be safe. — STB
Helfrich won't sell out our businesses
When incumbent politicians run for re-election, we generally expect them to explain what they have done to serve their constituents and why they deserve to be elected again. But Anna Williams doesn't have many positive accomplishments to talk about.
Williams voted for a multi-billion dollar tax (HB 3427) on business sales and then, along with her Salem cohort, ignored pleas from businesses to not impose it during the pandemic.
She voted to "reform" the Public Employee Retirement System (PERS) by extending the amortization period for the tens of billions of dollars the system is underfunded by extending the amortization period. That's like saying if you can't afford to buy a new car with a 6-year loan, just extend the loan to 10 years. Lets just kick the can down the road to our kids rather than deal with the problem.
In her first term, Williams voted with Portland lawmakers — who run the Legislature — 95% of the time. And she even voted for a new fee (SB47) on kayaks and paddle boards. She is out of touch with her constituents.
After listening to William's commercials and doing my own research, I'm voting for Jeff Helfrich for state representative. Jeff won't sell out our businesses in House District 52, and as a former first responder, we know he will always be there to support our communities and keep them safe. Salem desperately needs to restore balance to the process. Please join me in supporting Jeff Helfrich.
Trump v. United States
President Trump was completely "right" at each juncture of the pandemic, which turned out to always be the wrong turns.
When choosing between his election and the health of our people, he always chose his election.
When he learned of the seriousness of this virus in early February, he was slow to inform the general public, selecting his election over the health of our people.
When the virus was infecting many individuals, he pushed for opening up the nation too early, choosing the economy — hence his election, over the health of the people.
With infections still rising, he encouraged an early opening of the schools without most of them being prepared enough to do so, continuing to put his economy and his election ahead of the health of our kids, their parents and additional adults.
Lastly, after being infected with the virus, he encouraged people to not be afraid of COVID-19, implying no need to be extremely careful, again putting his election ahead of the health of all Americans.
Do we want a leader who too often puts his interest over that of the nation?
I only ask that when you vote, you keep these facts firmly in mind.
Vote 'no' on Metro tax
Twenty years ago, we built the Troutdale General Store from scratch. We have weathered a recession, rough winters, a Gorge fire from which we had just recovered and then COVID hit. Our three-month closure due to the pandemic was difficult, and reopening our doors when people are wary of going out hasn't been easy.
But like many small businesses, we are trying to push forward and rebound in a time of great uncertainty.
Our future is already scary and now Metro has a forever new tax for us. A tax on us (but not on Metro, they exempted themselves,) So, they protected themselves and left us out to dry.
This permanent wage tax will force small stores like ours out of business. We just can't afford to absorb a new tax when we are already struggling just to make ends meet.
Please vote no.
Terry and Jodi Smoke
Troutdale General Store
Vote for Rep. Anna Williams
Being a retired lactation consultant in private practice, single mother, and resident of Clackamas County for over 34 years, I have firsthand experience in the leadership styles of our current House District 52 Leader, Rep. Anna Williams, versus that of her opponent, Jeff Helfrich.
Remarkably, Hefrich's predecessor, Mark Johnson, dropped out in middle of his term to take a high paying position with Oregon Business & lndustry, a lobby group formed to represent Oregon businesses. Johnson resigned that position after making a racist comment about Rep. Diego Hernandez, D-East Portland.
Very few open "town hall" meetings were held during Mark Johnson's tenure nor that of Helfrich.
I attended most, and noticed only a few minutes were given to the public for questions. Both particlpants seemed to evade or downright ignore questions or comments that seemed to make them uncomfortable. Neither one answered my emails.
Anna Williams, on the other hand, has had many more open town hall meetings and given ample time to all questions. She reaches across the aisle and has good relationships with business owners, police, teachers, farmers, and us common folk. You can call, email or write her as I do, and she will respond immediately. She listens, and she acts.
Please vote for her in this election. She stands for all of us.
Values make a big difference
When I was growing up, I was taught that through Christ all people are equal and loved, good luck is on the other side of hard work, and to be kind to others especially to those who themselves are not so kind. These values were instilled into me by my parents. Today I watch as Mom runs her campaign for Gresham City Council Position 5, and nothing has changed.
I have watched as she has addressed nasty individuals who have been slanderously led to believe she has hate in her heart, and have been impressed with her calm demeaner in responding. Afterall why should she be shaken when she knows what was falsely created in her name was not in fact her. She has worked tirelessly to meet new people in our community in order to gain their perspective and a better understanding of our city.
Mom chooses to serve the City of Gresham in this capacity because she believes in fostering all of the talent Gresham has to offer in an equitable way. Please join me in voting Sue Piazza for Gresham City Council Position 5.
Piazza upholds public safety
As a real estate professional it is so important that our community be a desirable place to live. Parents want to raise their children where they can walk to school without fear and retirees want to be sure they can walk their city streets safe. So when people start talking about defunding public services like police I am concerned, not only for my business but for my family as I live locally also.
My research tells me that the City Council candidate that upholds my family's values of inclusiveness while at the same time understanding that safety is important is Sue Piazza. She has always held those values to be important and has always been a positive force of good, working tirelessly for many nonprofits and our schools. When she says something she means it and that is why I am voting for Sue Piazza for City Council Position 5.
Elect Gorsek to state Senate
Chris Gorsek has my enthusiastic endorsement to be the next senator for District 25.
As the mayor of Wood Village, I have frequent contact with Rep. Gorsek. He has always been there for the city government and our residents. He has often anticipated our needs before we asked. His long history of service to our community is why I can say with confidence that Chris will continue to advocate for the people of Wood Village and East County, in his new role as our State Senator.
From hosting a job fair at the Wood Village Baptist Church, to passing legislation that helped East County communities be more competitive in the Oregon Strategic Investment Program, Chris has always shown up for our community.
When five East County cities were denied a share of federal CARES money, Chris called out Governor Brown and called on Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler to provide a share of their funding. As part of a broader effort to secure state funding Chris has worked with Commissioner Stegmann, Mt. Hood Community College, the Portland Business Alliance and EcoNorthwest to find ways to ensure that the economic vitality of our community is long-term — not a quick fix.
Even when we disagree on issues I've found Chris to be a reliable and honest partner capable of learning and teaching. Capable of persuading or being persuaded. These are rare qualities to find in an elected official in such a polarized political environment.
Please join me in voting for Chris Gorsek to be the next State Senator for District 25. It's too late to mail in your ballot, but you can drop off your ballot at a drop box until 8 pm on Nov. 3. You can find the closest dropbox to you on the Secretary of State's website.
Mayor T. Scott Harden
Vote for Piazza, Stovall
"Leadership is unlocking people's potential to become better." – Bill Bradley.
Our community is extremely lucky to have two candidates, Travis Stovall for Mayor, and Sue Piazza for City Council Position 5, who will be that positive force to make not only our community better but also unlock the potential of this great city in which we live.
Travis has demonstrated a unique ability in his career to identify talent and put people in the right place to make businesses thrive. He will use those same skills that hundreds of companies have benefitted from in his leadership position as Mayor. He is a force for change thru transformation not upheaval.
Great leaders listen and then solve the issues based on facts not personal preference. Sue Piazza's leadership style is one that all elected officials should model. She has always been a problem solver, and during my years volunteering alongside her she has demonstrated the calm ability to lead and engage others to follow.
Our city will benefit from the leadership skills of these individual and therefore I strongly urge you to vote for Travis Stovall for Mayor and Sue Piazza for City Council Position 5.
Morales will put the people in Gresham City Hall
I've worked with Eddy Morales in various capacities since 2016. Eddy has focused his efforts on making it easier for people to engage with and access their government. He's championed transparency, equity, and justice as Gresham City Councilor, and he will continue to do so as Mayor. Our Gresham has a choice: Eddy's compassionate, responsive good governance, or the ruling clique's cronyism, incompetence, and willful indifference to the needs of Gresham's most vulnerable residents. Vote for Eddy to build a Gresham whose public servants listen to and work for the people!
He trabajado con Eddy Morales en varias capacidades desde 2016. Eddy se centra en que se haga fácil para que la gente se involucren y accedan a su gobierno. Ha sido un defensor de la transparencia, la equidad y la justicia durante su mandato al Concejo Municipal de Gresham, y lo continuará haciéndolo como alcalde. Nuestro Gresham tiene dos opciones: la visión de Eddy de un buen gobierno compasivo y receptivo, o el amiguismo, la incompetencia y la indiferencia deliberada de la camarilla gobernante hacia las necesidades de los residentes más vulnerables. ¡Vote por Eddy para construir un Gresham cuyos funcionarios públicos escuchen y trabajen para el pueblo!
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