The last large poll (issues I hear every day) showed that the issues that need top attention are "... homeless/poverty (25 percent); affordable housing (17 percent); and traffic congestion (14 percent)."
I personally would change traffic congestion to first, but all can be fixed with the same changes:
1. Expand the urban growth boundary and reduce density.
2. Streamline the permit process and make it less costly to build.
3. Build public housing without requiring high minimum wages.
Pay attention, get on board, fix the issues that most citizens want fixed.
Dear Tribune: Where are the comics?
What happened to the comics page, my favorite part of your newspaper? Hate sports; love comics.
Editor's Note: Rising newsprint costs have forced us to drop the comics page. You can find most of your favorites at gocomics.com.
Clean energy jobs will make a difference
With the federal government's assault on environmental programs, and especially on those addressing climate change, the states need to do everything they can to pick up the slack.
Oregon's Clean Energy Jobs does that. Bills in the House and Senate create a carbon market where corporations can cooperate with one another to bring down their pollution to acceptable levels over a period of time. It also provides investment dollars to develop and strengthen environmental programs within the state.
But Senate President Peter Courtney is holding back a vote and could delay it until next year. The House version apparently is ready to move, and the Senate may be, too. A lot of work has gone into these bills, and the momentum is here now.
This bill may not be a perfect plan. And Oregon's industries may not be among the country's largest polluters. But Oregon's pollution problems are serious enough, and its industries need to do more than they are. Clean Energy Jobs will make a difference.
Hopefully Sen. Courtney will bring the bill to a Senate vote this session. The federal government isn't wasting time turning back environmental gains. The state should not waste time making them.