Letters to the Editor: Oct. 8, 2020
Beaverton voters deserve honesty from mayoral challenger
With Election Day fast approaching, you have likely received your voters' pamphlet highlighting the candidates and measures we will soon be voting on. As we looked through ours, we were disappointed to see that Mayor Denny Doyle's opponent used her limited space in the pamphlet to make misleading claims about Denny's record, rather than focus on what she would bring to the role of mayor.
One claim in specific stood out to us: that Mayor Doyle opposed paid family medical leave. We serve as state representatives in the Oregon Legislature. We both worked on paid family medical leave policy at the state level and were strong supporters of its passage. In fact, as former nurses and teachers ourselves, and longtime union members, paid family medical leave is something we are both passionate about. We wanted you to hear directly from us: Denny never opposed paid family medical leave, and the way his opponent is characterizing it is unfair and untrue.
The city of Beaverton has a strong paid family leave policy in place and Denny never opposed paid family medical leave at the Legislature. In 2017, city staff — not Denny or at Denny's direction — wrote to the Legislature expressing concerns that draft legislation would impact existing benefits for city employees at great cost to the city, while only benefiting 14% of employees.
Paid family medical leave did not pass the Oregon House or Senate in 2017, in large part because there were important adjustments, like those raised by the city's HR director, that needed to be made. In 2017, we were just beginning to work on this concept; when Oregon's landmark paid family medical leave policy passed in 2019, it looked much different than the original concept and passed with broad support.
This type of misleading and dishonest campaigning may work for polarized national politics, but it has no place in Beaverton. Mayor Doyle has served Beaverton well, and he's been a champion for working people. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, Denny has been there for working people, taking action to help renters — including providing $1 million to community partners for rent and utility assistance — and advocating for protections for essential workers at the state level.
There's a reason that Denny is endorsed by longtime advocates for working people like us — and the union that represents city workers. They know that he is the choice Beaverton's workers can trust –—not someone who will say whatever it takes to win.
If you see more claims against Denny in the coming weeks, we urge you not to take them at face value. Do your research, and visit KnowTheFactsBeaverton.org to get the truth about Denny's record.
State Representative, House District 35
State Representative, House District 27
Stevens is propped up by special interests
Peggy Stevens has a ton of campaign money, so be careful when reading her campaign information. She is able to pay top dollar to spin a fancy political narrative.
But, she is taking money from the very people who brought the Portland problems to small towns in Oregon like Sherwood.
I recommend that you pull up her ORESTAR page, either using the donations name of Friends of Peggy Stevens or her ID 20446. So far $135,000-plus has been taken in, and you should ask why?
A list of her donors spells it out. Big construction and development needs a new fresh voice dressed up to look like your demure grandmother. Don't be fooled. The donors are hardly small money donors who are trying to send their neighbor to the Oregon House to represent them, so they want something.
Stevens' bio states that she works for PK Property LLC, but she is more than an employee, she is a partner. And as you are looking at where she is spending the donor money, it is with campaign consultants that excel at nothing speak and empty promises. Haven't we the taxpayers had enough of that?
At the same time, I encourage you to review Courtney Neron's ORESTAR account 19466. I think you will find that Courtney is more in line with you. Small donation from people who are looking for someone honest to represent them.
Do the research yourself. Look at who is trying to buy a seat in the Oregon House. Then look at Neron's record of finding the dollars to help with the road project around the new Sherwood High School as one small example of good works, and I am sure the difference will be clear: Neron, who works for you, making sure your tax dollars benefit your community; or Stevens, who will be obligated to the big donors?
Nancy Taylor, Sherwood
Sloop is better on issues, transparency in HD 37
As I have been researching candidates to vote for in this upcoming election, I have found that Kelly Sloop is the candidate best suited for House District 37 over Rachel Prusak.
Kelly Sloop is not only a native to the area who has raised her own family here, but she has been a pharmacist helping the local residents in their most trying times for 30 years. She is ready and willing to go fight for us to lessen taxes such as the CAT tax, which is killing small businesses; create safety by funding the police; and allow for school choice.
Rachel Prusak has only voted for higher taxes during her first term in office; is financially supported by groups like American Federation of Teachers (AFT) who want to defund the police; and doesn't care much for school choice. Currently, there is a complaint open citing the breaking of state election laws by hiding campaign contributions, as Prusak's husband received a cash donation for a documentary film about her.
Kelly Sloop is honest, transparent, and she will fight for us as the new House District 37 representative. Please vote for Kelly Sloop in this election. You will not regret it.
Jeanette Schade, West Linn
Measure 110 offers a better way to address addiction
My name is Harold Bray, and I'm an Air Force vet. I'm writing because Oregon is in the midst of an addiction crisis, and I see its impact all around me. People I know and love have lost their lives to addiction. For me, this crisis is real, and it hits very close to home.
One to two Oregonians die of drug overdoses every day, sometimes while they are waiting to get treatment. This is a crisis.
Our current approach to drug addiction is not working. Current drug laws can ruin lives based on a single mistake, saddling someone with a lifelong criminal record that prevents them from getting a job, getting housing or even a credit card. And jailing people for their addiction does not help them find recovery.
Criminalizing addiction only makes it harder to ask for help, and many return to using once released from jail because they are not offered treatment or recovery services while in jail.
This November, we can vote for a more effective, humane approach to drug addiction.
Using funds from Oregon's existing marijuana tax, Measure 110 will greatly expand access to drug treatment and recovery services throughout the state. Anyone who wants services will be able to get them, not just those who have the funds or the "right" insurance plan.
Measure 110 doesn't legalize any drugs. It removes criminal penalties for small amounts of personal possession of drugs and connects people with drug treatment and recovery services.
I am voting yes on Measure 110 and I hope you will join me. You can learn more about Measure 110 by visiting voteyeson110.org.
Harold D. Bray, Sherwood
Business group opposes Metro measure
The Tualatin Chamber of Commerce has long supported improving mobility, investing in infrastructure, and reducing our carbon footprint. For these reasons, we are urging a no vote on Metro's payroll tax proposal.
Working families, nonprofits and small businesses are facing a time of unprecedented economic anxiety and fear. Extracting billions from a contracting economy will lead to lost wages, lost jobs, fewer services, and, ultimately, fewer small businesses. And Metro's wage tax is not just a recession tax, it's an unfair and regressive tax.
Our region's employer groups worked with Metro for nearly two years to negotiate a funding package that could work. Metro had the buy-in for a practical proposal, but it instead chose this divisive, political proposal that punishes employers and employees, forcing them to fund a system everyone uses.
Now is the time to unite around how to make the right investments to move our region forward together, not drive wedges, play politics and cut paychecks.
Chief Executive Officer, Tualatin Chamber of Commerce
Complex issues require Hindley's leadership
Please join me and vote for Jeff Hindley to be our next Washington County commissioner for District 1.
As I have gotten to know Jeff, it is clear he has the skills and experiences needed to help guide Washington County through these difficult times. He has a detailed knowledge of how county government works with over 20 years of county experience.
Jeff's past jobs, which include mentoring high needs mental health youth, helping families obtain resources and providing ethics training to local officials, all showcase his integrity and concern for every county resident.
The issues we face today, such as COVID-19, wildfires, affordable housing, traffic congestion and homelessness, are complex and require someone with Jeff's depth of knowledge to deliver comprehensive solutions that are fact-based and common sense. Jeff understands how to partner with Metro on tri-county projects, making sure they are cost-effective and deliver strong results for Washington County.
Jeff is compassionate, fair and just, and will navigate to inclusive solutions. He will lead with empathy and make complex ideas easy to understand for everyone.
Melissa Laird, Beaverton
Are the state's health and safety standards enough?
Many of my peers and I at Southridge High School have concerns for our health and safety.
We know that the governor has put standards in place that need to be met before students can return to in-person learning and/or hybrid learning. These two standards are that the infection rate in a county needs to be less than 5% for seven days and 10 or fewer cases per 100,000 people over seven days, both for at least three consecutive weeks, and also the statewide positivity test rate must be 5% or less or seven days in a row (again for at least three weeks in a row). Masks also must be worn indoors at all times.
Based on what we're seeing at colleges, universities, and other high schools, I do not feel these measures are adequate to for sure keep us from spreading the virus both amongst us and our families, as the infection rate in many colleges and high schools who have offered in-person learning has forced many of them to change course to all online learning.
We are taught in school to use evidence-based conclusions to make important decisions. I feel like we don't have enough evidence provided to the public on how these decisions have been made.
What pieces of data were used and what studies were used to make the standards, and is it worth risking lives to resume any in-person learning without an effective vaccine that has been widely taken?
Liam Parta, Beaverton
Trump's tax returns just the latest evidence he isn't fit to lead
It is quite puzzling how any voters can continue to support President Donald Trump after the latest revelations about his taxes.
In the past 10 years, the vast majority of middle-class families paid more in federal taxes than he did. And none of us own fancy golf resorts or casinos.
But this should come as no surprise to anyone who has been paying attention to his antics. The man has no morals, no ethics and no empathy. This is not someone who should be in any kind of a leadership position.
David Pauli, Forest Grove
Support safer slaughter
The Safe Line Speeds During COVID-19 Act (S.4338 / H.R. 7521) will positively impact all aspects of high-speed slaughter systems. The bill aims to protect slaughterhouse employees, animals and consumers from the perils of higher-speed mechanized slaughter.
As recently illustrated, slaughterhouses have fallen victim to disproportionate COVID-19 infections and deaths amongst employees. By passing the Safe Line Speeds in COVID-19 Act, we can prevent the propagation of dangerous, high-speed slaughter systems and ensure that no funds allocated to the USDA during the COVID-19 pandemic be used to support increased slaughter line speeds.
This act places an emphasis on human and animal protection instead of merely generating revenue for the massive, privatized slaughterhouse industry that benefits from high-speed slaughter.
Please join me in applauding Sen. Jeff Merkley, who has ardently cosponsored this bill in the Senate. Additionally, please join me in contacting Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Suzanne Bonamici and urging them to also co-sponsor the Safe Line Speeds During COVID-19 Act.
Paige Lemhouse, Beaverton
Debate showcased both candidates' lack of fitness
I found the first presidential debate utterly disgusting.
President Donald Trump's combative and aggressive style was so bad I couldn't get my hearing aid feedback adjusted enough to hear what he was talking about.
As for Democratic nominee Joe Biden, when asked about his 110-page policy proposals, he refused to answer one question and bumbled three others. Like I have written before, Biden has no grasp on what his Democratic team has written or set as their platform.
I, having been a witness during a congressional budget investigation in 1979 under Sens. Warren Rudman and Phil Gramm (while Sen. Biden was still a new-guy), feel nominee Biden's inability to present his policy proposals is unacceptable after 47 years in political office.
One candidate appears to suffer from Stage 4 dark triad psychosis (narcissism/Machiavellianism/psychopathy) while the other suffers from Stage 2 dementia, yet these are the candidates chosen by America's two major political parties. [Ed.: Neither Trump nor Biden have been diagnosed with a psychological disorder or degenerative condition.] It was this that was on display around the world on Sept. 29, a superpower descending into a third-world country.
Joe Turner, Columbia City
Cut the mics of interrupting candidates
I wish that Chris Wallace could have finished outlining the rules of the first debate with the following hypothetical statement: "In a poll taken by the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today and FOX News, over 98% of respondents expressed a strong desire to hear, without interruption, the comments of each candidate called upon to speak. With that in mind, only the person to whom I direct a question will have his microphone activated. This will benefit the two of you and most important the American people. Thank you. Now the first question."
David A. Nardone, Hillsboro
Freedoms given up are freedoms lost forever
I would like to express my opinion and observation regarding current events.
I am referring to the U.S. Constitution and Declaration of Independence. Our Constitution and Declaration of Independence were drafted by persons of great wisdom.
These documents lay out the framework of how our society works: Limited government and freedom for the individual.
This system worked well for over 200 years. Now the system is being corrupted.
The government is dictating how we live. One recent example is the current push to tax smoking and vaping. I am personally against both.
The proposal sounds good, and government asserts many benefits. However, it takes freedom away from the individual. The individual must take responsibility for his own actions.
I believe government should point out the hazards of this product, and the individual should make the decision whether to use the product.
Another example of government telling the individual how to live is fireworks for the Fourth of July.
I believe the use of fireworks should be an individual choice, and the individual is responsible for their use and any damage or injuries that result. I, at 80 years, and my children have all our fingers, due to good parent responsibility.
When we lose a certain freedom, it is extremely difficult to get it back. If the citizens keep voting for good-sounding stuff or so they get something at the expense of another group, the country will keep going downhill and will eventually become a full socialist system.
The individual has the responsibility to know what they are voting for, not just sounds good or gets them something.
If the people want to have a socialist government, they need to research and see where that form of government has worked as well as our system. People need to wake up, before our system of government is lost.
Bruce Anderson, Tigard
Incoming Clackamas County leader hopes to work with Hindley
Voters in District 1 in Washington County should elect Jeff Hindley, the most qualified candidate in this race.
Jeff will bring years experience with county issues, proven effectiveness as a team player, a genuine concern for all, and above all, his integrity to the position. Jeff has all these qualities in abundance.
As an elected official in Clackamas County, I look forward to working with him on behalf of our vibrant communities.
Please vote to send Jeff Hindley to the Washington County Commission for District 1.
Chair-elect, Clackamas County Commission
Neron is the candidate of civility
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg said: "Fight for the things that you care about but do it in way that will lead others to join you." We in Sherwood, Wilsonville, King City and the rest of House District 26 are represented in Salem by a former teacher who lives by both parts of this sentiment, Rep. Courtney Neron.
She works tirelessly for students and teachers, working families, our environment and wildlife, and more, and does so persuasively and with civility. You may see social media posts and mailers attacking her as she runs for re-election. But you will see nothing from her or her campaign about her opponent that is uncivil or baseless. As was true of Justice Ginsburg, this is a sign of her strength and maturity.
If we the voters reward Courtney's passion and civility this election, we'll all benefit from her continued work for us in Salem.
Jane Bicquette, Sherwood
Hindley has proven worthy of county commissioner job
We believe Jeff Hindley is unequivocally the best candidate to represent Washington County commissioner for District 1, which serves Beaverton, Aloha, Cooper Mountain and Reedville, a diverse area with growing challenges.
To understand why, we encourage all voters in District 1 to listen to the candidates' debates, and to check out Jeff's specific, well-constructed plans at the JeffHindley.com website.
As Washington County residents, we have known Jeff Hindley and his family for about 15 years. Jeff is a man of integrity, serving our community in many ways including working in county government with at-risk youth, coaching our kids in basketball, teaching growth groups at church, and serving on many local community and government committees, including Washington County's Homeless Plan Advisory Committee (HPAC), the Rural Roads Maintenance Advisory Committee (RROMAC), and as a member of the Washington County Public Affairs Forum. Jeff has proven his commitment to serving the residents of Washington County.
Jeff is well-educated and approaches policymaking with thoughtful, diligent research supported by direct community response, data and best practices. A great listener who carefully considers the viewpoints of our wonderfully diverse community, Jeff Hindley will be an effective advocate for Washington County.
Dave and Michele Fritzler, Hillsboro
City councilor endorses Hindley for commission
As council president in Sherwood, I understand the critical importance that Washington County plays in the region. Regardless of where you live in the county, it is crucial that an atmosphere of partnership and mutual understanding exists between the county and the incorporated cities of Washington County.
Washington County is not Metro; it is not Portland. It is the most diverse county in Oregon and the economic engine of the state.
We need commissioners that will advocate for and produce results for Washington County, its cities and its residents.
Jeff Hindley has shown his independence and commitment to our businesses and communities. With 20 years of experience working in county government, he knows how things work and, more importantly, how to get things done. He approaches his work with enormous integrity and a genuine concern for all citizens.
I have endorsed Jeff and hope the voters in District 1 will endorse him on the ballot.
President, Sherwood City Council
Trust Hindley for Washington County
Right now, the times are so difficult, the question is whom should I vote for? Who is the right person that will take in consideration the needs of the people, and to walk the extra mile to fight for the change that will benefit the citizens of District 1?
Jeff Hindley for commissioner, a man driven by integrity and trust. These are only a couple of the many qualities he has as a human being. As a resident of Washington County, he knows what the needs of the citizens are. He will fight for equity and justice for the community.
We as a migrant family know how difficult it is for this group of people to survive. More areas that are rural are being urbanized. The job opportunities for this marginal group are less and less.
Jeff knows the laws of this country and especially of Washington County. He will make sure the voices of the migrant population are heard.
Our family had some difficult times. Jeff was there for us during those hard times. He honors his words, and that is so rare to find now. I believe he will be the right choice for this position; he will make sure that what he promises, he will do.
Maria de Lourdes and Leobardo Salas, Hillsboro
Neron aligns with HD 26 on the issues
If you care about closing the racial gaps in student reading levels, incarceration rates, infant mortality, access to broadband, homeownership and access to healthcare, then Courtney Neron is your choice for House District 26.
Over the past two years, I have had the great pleasure to meet and work with Courtney on issues of racial division in Wilsonville's neighborhoods and schools.
Courtney puts people first, not Portland. Based on her passion for issues of justice and understanding of rational science, she is a member of the Democratic Party. However, look at the people from across the political spectrum that endorsed her for re-election.
A vote for Courtney is a vote for civility. To solve the nasty partisan divide in this country, we need more people like Courtney Neron in office.
Until the national and Oregon Republican Party move away from their indifference, and at times opposition, towards solving our deepest gaps in racial division, there is only one choice in House District 26. Please join me in voting for Courtney Neron.
Garet Prior, Wilsonville
Hindley has vital experience, credentials
With elections but weeks away, I am writing to encourage voting for Jeff Hindley for Washington County Commissioner, District 1.
As a Washington County resident totaling 34 years and a retired federal law enforcement officer, I know voting for the right person is so important in these divisive times. Trusted friends of mine who personally know Jeff Hindley greatly respect him, his character traits, his associates, his upstanding reputation and his loyalty to Washington County.
Growing up and residing locally, Jeff and his wife have grown children. Besides his advanced education degrees, he has worked over 20 years with at-risk youth in Yamhill County and McMinnville, and he is continuing his education for an additional degree in public administration.
Considering all the above, plus his experience on Washington County boards — Homeless Planning Advisory and Rural Roads Operations and Maintenance committees — Jeff Hindley is well qualified for the position as a Washington County commissioner. He has my vote, and I hope he has yours.
Phil Miller, West Slope
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