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Local business doing a good thing, 'tax free' donations anything but, thank a volunteer

Pitch in to help out with coat program maintained by a local business

To the editor:

"Need A Coat? – Take One, Want to Help? – Leave One," is what the sign says. Newberg Chapter #55, Order of Eastern Star has pitched in to help Terri Steneck, owner of Valley Realty in Newberg, as she helps our neighbors during this cold season. There is a coat rack on the porch of her office on the corner of Garfield and Hancock streets with the sign inviting all to participate. Newberg OES Chapter is doing its share to help and we hope others will also donate their extra coats.

Cleve Rolfe, Newberg

So-called 'tax free'donations take away from important programs

To the editor:

Every day various officials in the Democratic Party send emails urging me to make use of Oregon's law allowing citizens to credit political donations against their taxes.

"It's like a free donation!" says one I got today ... and yesterday and every day now for weeks.

It is not like a free donation. Every dollar the Democratic (or Republican) Party raises because of the political donations tax credit is a dollar taken away from important needs in Oregon. For example, it's a dollar less for schools.

Our governor, Kate Brown, says she is aggressively searching for ways to give more money to schools. But her Democratic Party colleagues are busy every day urging people to funnel money away from schools and into her party's coffers. (The Republicans may be just as busy, but if so they haven't found a way to dun me every day.)

If Gov. Brown is really serious about funding schools she will stop her allies from asking citizens to divert their taxes to the Democratic Party's bank account.

And if she's really serious about funding schools, she will ask the Legislature to end the hypocrisy by ending the tax credit for donations to political parties.

Ron Mock, Dundee

Take the time to thank all those who volunteer in various capacities

To the editor:

With the New Year beginning, I invite all residents to join me in thanking the many volunteer citizens who have given of their time and talents to serve as elected officials on our city council and district boards.

I'm thinking especially of Newberg's recent mayor, Bob Andrews, who just finished serving the city for 16 years, four on council and 12 as mayor. And, Melinda Von Bossuyt who earlier this year resigned after many years on the local school board.

Whether an elected official serves one term or many and whether one agrees with their decisions or not, we the citizens need to show gratitude for their service.

Currently with all the political upheaval, it is worth noting that good governance begins locally, at the 'grassroots,' with informed citizenry willing to step forward to serve. Our democracy depends on it.

Let us also resolve to respect our civic leaders and speak with civility in dispute as they wrestle with public concerns.

Margaret LeMaster,

Newberg

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