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We hear from the Columbia County Cultural Coalition, Cascade Resilience LLC and a concerned reader.

CCCC board member grateful for support

The Columbia County Cultural Coalition (CCCC) has recently been active in administering the federal Coronavirus Relief Fund Cultural Support (CRFCS) made available to Columbia County through the Oregon Cultural Trust.

We have received the funds and are in the process of signing contracts and distributing the money to the eight successful nonprofit 501(c)(3) grantees.

The total amount granted the recipients is $22,668. The recipients are:

• Shoestring Players

• Clatskanie Arts Commission

• Columbia Arts Guild

• Columbia Chorale of Oregon

• Rainier Oregon Historical Museum

The CCCC is an all-volunteer, county-wide committee that meets throughout the year to publish, promote and distribute grant monies for cultural and arts activities and events. We administer annual funds from the OCT, but have also sought and received funds from foundations for other grants and workshops.

As a member of the board of directors, I'd like to thank the committee for their dedication and hard work.

Dee Vadnais, Deer Island

Profane political invective isn't in the Christmas spirit

Driving back home to Scappoose from St. Helens this past Sunday afternoon, I noticed that the residents of a house along Highway 30 had erected quite a display of Christmas lights across their fence. As I approached, it became clear that the display included a message. Finally, being near enough for it to be read clearly, I was presented — in festive red and green — the heart-warming holiday sentiment of "F*** Kate Brown."

That someone — anyone — would think it in any way appropriate to employ the traditional decorations of the Christmas season to so cynically and arrogantly proclaim to all the passing world such a base, mean and hateful message far surpasses appalling. The lights of Christmas that so many of us illuminate during this time of year are in celebration of the birth of He who was born into the world to bring peace and light to all. That such should be used to present a message of such darkness and malice during the Christmas season is not merely hateful, it is antithetical to the very message of He whose birth the season celebrates.

I know not the person responsible for this abomination, but if he or she professes to be a Christian, I would encourage them to turn back to their Bible and review the words of Jesus Christ in the Gospel according to St. Matthew; to ask themselves if these lights they are shining are the lights of good works and if they glorify their Father in Heaven; or if their emblazoned message simply brings them shame and furthers the all-too-present darkness of the world.

John Riutta, Scappoose

Let's move on disaster preparedness

There can be no argument that natural disasters caused by climate change are becoming more destructive and more frequent. They are also more disruptive for families and communities. Extended power and communication outages caused by these disasters increase risk, as do disruptions to critical infrastructure like roads and bridges.

These events are not going away. It is in all of our interests, at every level of community, that we prepare ourselves for these disasters. For example, here in Oregon, my company is working on neighborhood earthquake resilience, focusing on energy and communications. So we are familiar with disaster planning, and the vital role it plays in keeping communities safe when bad things happen. Flooding is a prime example where planning and investment can protect lives and property.

We support federal legislation, like the recently introduced Flood Resiliency and Taxpayer Savings Act, that will ensure that federal government, as it builds and rebuilds critical infrastructure, plans for future natural disaster risks. This bipartisan bill requires federal investments in flood-prone areas to be more resilient to future risks, such as sea-level rise and flooding. Without action, tens of thousands of federally funded assets, such as water utilities, roads and bridges, hospitals and schools remain vulnerable to the vicious cycle of flooding resulting in mounting costs to rebuild.

Research shows that every dollar spent on exceeding current building codes to better withstand flooding can save society between $5 and $7 on average. In addition to reduced damages, these investments have been shown to create jobs, support faster economic recovery following disasters, and reduce the potential of exacerbating hardships communities may already be facing.

This historic hurricane season shows us we cannot sit idly by in the face of more powerful natural disasters. This bill is a good step forward.

Chris Robertson

Chief Executive Officer, Cascade Resilience LLC


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