Off base

To the Editor,

In the Pioneer’s 19 March edition, John Bowler lamented about the limited experience and time available for volunteers who run Crooked River Ranch’s major organizations which “often contribute to protracted planning, decision-making and action.”

I am responding to Mr. Bowler’s criticism of the Ranch’s three boards and, by implication, the volunteers who man them without compensation. The HOA, fire department and water company all operate under their own articles of incorporation and bylaws which give their boards of directors responsibility for oversight, budgetary authorization and long-range planning — not management.

Day-to-day management is in the hands of the senior staffers hired by the boards. Directors are elected by the community and represent a pretty good cross section of it.

It is true that new directors most often do not bring much in the way of experience specifically relevant to their new assignment, but they bring a desire to learn how to best support their community; and there is a wealth of relevant information available and veteran directors to help their learning curve.

Mr. Bowler reacted to what he perceived as the slow process of hiring a new fire chief. Having gone through the search, interview and hiring decision processes for a new administrator, I can personally attest that it is by nature a long and complex process. Getting the final hiring decision wrong can result in major problems and significant costs. Board decisions are almost never as simple as they appeared from the outside. Board members hold the public trust and are required to invest due diligence in their decision-making.

I would like to end this note with a thank you to all the members of the three Ranch boards who work hard and long for the benefit of our community, most often without any public recognition.

Ben Johnson

Crooked River Ranch

Last act

To the Editor,

Dear friends of the High Desert Community Theater: It has been my great pleasure to have been a part of this team since we first started performing in 2010. From our humble beginnings of one show a year with two performances, to two shows a year and six performances each! What a fantastic adventure it has all been.

This production, "The Shame of Tombstone," marks my last production with the HDCT. Life circumstances have led us to moving away from your wonderful community. I will miss you all so very much! To quote Amanda Goodsort,  "There is more than Silver in Tombstone … there is true friendship!"

Rest assured the HDCT will live on and will continue to grow with your support and encouragement. We have a very strong board of directors, a growing talented acting pool, and the best most supportive community a troupe could ask for.  

As I take my final bow this coming weekend, know that I do it with equal parts sadness as I will miss you all so very much, and happiness, as I move closer to my family and welcome our new grandchild. 

Please continue your support of the HDCT; they are a fantastic group of people, and I am a better person for having known, each and everyone one of them.  

Kimberly Strong


We built 'M'

To the Editor,

The article you published regarding the loss of Beth Crow and Harold Moore as teachers made reference to Harold Moore and Jerry Ramsey originating and building the "M" on the hill.

Harold and Jerry did come up with the idea, but the construction of the "M" was done by the Class of ‘57 in the summer of '56. I was the president of the Class of '57 and got my classmates together to start and finish the project.

We whitewashed the rocks using water from the Babe Moore pumice block plant across the highway from the hill where the "M" is located.

Dudley Thomas



To the Editor,

I have to comment on all the nasty publicity stating that poor people are lazy!

I went through McDonald's drive-through recently in Madras. With two lanes merging to the pay and pickup windows, I cannot imagine how those people do it.

The first gal, with the lovely thick braid, was so kind, took my money, answered my question while orders were coming in on her speaker and she was taking them. How do they do it!

Next window, person rushing to pack my order and within minutes I have it. I know I would be so frustrated mentally and physically trying to do that. I tried selling tickets for a boat trip from a window in Florida and completely got flustered.

Lazy? No way.

Nancy Goodenow


Ahern, Huston

To the Editor,

Thank you, Madras Pioneer, for providing local news, local ads, and a place to express local opinions.

My opinion on the current races for county commissioners is that current or former county employees would naturally, by their experience, have sympathies and interests that would tend to make them represent county employees.

I would rather have a commissioner who represents me as a county taxpayer without any conflict of interest.

I appreciate that retiring Commissioner John Hatfield and incumbent Commissioner Mike Ahern have made some effort to be frugal in the management of my tax dollars. I am afraid that county employees are not usually so frugal.

For that reason, I am supporting Mike Ahern for re-election and Mae Huston to replace John Hatfield. I know that Mae will carefully administer our tax dollars.

Sue Rahi


Contract Publishing

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