Letters to the Editor: February 16, 2018

Light timing spot-on

I want to compliment the workers and planners who set the timing of the traffic lights on Second Street, at both Adams and Baker street intersections.
I cross those intersections almost daily, as I work and shop in downtown and beyond.

Before the new lights came online, it took two light changes to get across both intersections. The new timing makes it possible to get through both on one light interval.

This correction seems to have solved a backup problem at those intersections. Thanks, guys!

Sherry Howk



Bag ban a bust

I don’t know what the city council considers success, but the bag ban in town is a bust.

Most people I talk to shop out of town when they can. For instance, you can go to Tigard and shop at Costco, WinCo and Walmart in a radius of about a quarter of a mile.

To top things off, not only do you get bags or boxes at no charge, but you can also fill up with gas for 30 cents a gallon less most of the time. That’s how you attract customers.

Maybe our local leaders should volunteer to bag items and pay for the bags themselves once a week, if they think it’s so much fun. The sad thing is that the businesses don’t want to punish their customers, but are forced to by our progressive nanny state, which thinks it knows what’s best for us.

How about, instead, cleaning up the growing number of deteriorating neighborhoods and addressing the terrible homeless population taking over the city? That would certainly make McMinnville more attractive for both economic and population growth.

Robert McClure



How about drink cups?

Re the plastic bag ban:

Now that plastic bags are almost gone in McMinnville, one of the most common and high visibility forms of litter remaining is the large foam soft drink cup.
One can hardly walk anywhere in town without seeing discarded cups. And a leading local source of these cups is Circle K.

Representatives of this company were quoted worrying about the effect of the bag ban.

I wonder. Do they also worry about the throwaway cups from their stores that so frequently end up littering our streets and public places?

Denny Patella



Nickel here, dime there

I’m fed up!

It’s 5 cents for a paper bag, 50 cents to use my debit card.

Hey, city of McMinnville and local business owners, apparent cheapskates that you are.

It’s called the cost of doing business. Eat it.

Sheila Hunter



No on quarries, landfills

The county has proposed a change in zoning that would prohibit commercial solar arrays on farmland.
This feels very heavy-handed to me. I understand some people do not like the look of the arrays, as they are not pretty. But that is not sufficient reason for banning them altogether.

The measure should be amended to allow solar power production for on-site use by farms, wineries and other agricultural businesses. And any zone change to  restrict solar arrays on farmland should also include restrictions for other industrial uses, including gravel quarries and landfills.
Now would be a good time to make that change, as all three industrial uses take farmland out of production.

The establishment of a solar array does not permanently destroy the potential for farming. However, both gravel quarries and landfills destroy the land forever.
Thus, if the purpose of the zone change is to protect farmland, it makes no sense to zone out solar arrays without treating quarries and landfills the same.

I encourage everyone to read the proposed zone change, make his or her own decision and submit written testimony to Yamhill County before the deadline of March 1.

Kris Bledsoe



Cut the PERS ties

PERS conflicts have been going on too long. I hope Rep. Ron Noble’s goal of removing legislators, judges and statewide elected officials from the PERS system comes to be during the short 2018 session.

The article published in the Dec. 11 News-Register did a good job of explaining why it’s important to make this change. In short, the people who oversee PERS should not be part of the PERS program.

We should all support Rep. Noble in this step toward balancing the PERS books. Please let everyone in the Legislature in Salem know he or she should support HB 4115.

Steve Caldwell



Voters were hoodwinked

Several years ago, the voters of Oregon were the victims of a deception. We were sold the concept of adding a “short session” in even-numbered years by being told they would be used for tweaking the state budget, for minor housekeeping issues, and for nothing else.

In reality, they have become mad sprint races to transform as much garbage as possible into law. Darn little of it has anything to do with the budget, or so it seems. Much of it, in fact, is an insult to basic human rights.

Since the “short sessions” obviously aren’t needed for their original purpose, there should be introduced a voter initiative to repeal them, thereby saving the general fund the expense of the sessions.

I would gladly support such an initiative. I would even sit at a petition table to help, if needed.

Until that day, legislators with any shred of integrity will vote NO on any even-year measure, no matter how benevolent its intention, which does not fall into the categories of budget or minor housekeeping. Further, they should vote NO on all measures as long as an insult to due process such as Gov. Kate Brown’s gun bill, HB 4145, remains in play.

Len Karpinski




HB 4145 has no due process. And ANYONE that you have EVER been intimate with is now empowered to ruin your life---without due process. No longer limited to close associations.

Don Dix

Mr. Karpinski, you are totally correct, and Gov. Brown is only a puppet worried more about her legacy than what is good for Oregon.

Don Dix

Sherry Hawk -- the worst backup is @ 5th & Adams -- rush hour creates about 3 or 4 blocks of standstill traffic. And what is the most expeditious route from say, the swimming pool to the hospital, 1st, 3rd, or 5th?

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