Letters to the editor: April 26, 2019

Think Tank offers ideas

Concerned as many of us are for our community’s increasing homeless crisis, members of the Yamhill County Democratic Think Tank discussed the issue at our April meeting and came up with two action items we wish to be considered.  

The first is to develop a homeless camp not far from city and county services where they can park RVs and other vehicles, as well as set up tents. The second is to establish a site where they can have an actual address for the postal service, their children’s schools, potential employers and providers of mental health contact support, Social Security benefits and so forth.

It is our hope to join other community networks wishing to seek solutions to begin to resolve some of the growing concerns. We feel it is time to adopt a grassroots campaign encouraging meaningful dialogue and comprehensive discussion from all interested groups within our community. We need difficult but decisive action immediately.

The Yamhill County Democratic Think Tank supports our leaders in this urgent quality-of-life assessment, aimed at generating a proactive resolution for all.

Liz Marlia-Stein



Hold judges accountable

The judges of Yamhill County should consider their culpability in the murder of Brian Bodle, whose body was discovered in a burned-out car in Southwest Washington’s Skamania County. See “Suspect identified in slaying of Newberg man,” on the PamplinMedia.com website.

Anyone who peruses the Department of Justice’s online records search site, found at webportal.courts.oregon.gov/portal, will discover suspect Damian Belander has an amazingly extensive record of arrests and/or convictions for violent crimes.

The roster includes 19 pending Yamhill County charges, including robbery, kidnapping and assault. It also includes a 2016 Yamhill County conviction for assaulting a public safety officer, rendered in a case in which accompanying charges of possession of methamphetamine, felon in possession of a weapon and resisting arrest were dismissed.  

If I had a vicious dog that I allowed to roam at large, even though it had a history of biting people, I would be held civilly and criminally accountable if it mauled a child. I would be held accountable even if the person my dog attacked was a heroin addict.

The voters of Yamhill County should hold their judges just as accountable.

James Crawford




Don Dix

I find it quite amusing that any political party would expect people to believe findings from a group that follows their party affiliation with the title 'Think Tank'. The word oxymoron comes to mind!


Don, I have to admit that my initial reaction was similar to yours. However, I also see some merit in the suggestions for consideration. The devil's in the details, of course, but the concept seems worth considering.


Spot on, James Crawford.


I've got a republican think tank idea.

Cut the services, enforce the laws and offer drug treatment only.

Bingo! No need for a camp 😁


Watch "Seattle is Dying" on utube

Then decide:

Democrate Think Tank: Accomodate them - build them an area to live as they wish only easier - add more services = Seattle and Portland


Cut Services, enforce laws and offer drug treatment like Rhode Island (who fixed their camper issue)

Hmm tough choice. We may need to vote differently in the future to get it accomplished 😁


Portland has something like this. It was a temporary camp called dignity village, also designed by democrats. The temporary camp has been there I believe about 25 years and has spawned other temporary camps around town. It has been plagued by domestic violence calls, child abuse, other sexual assaults, drug dealing, intoxications, etc. it works really well, you can tell by all the homeless in downtown Portland and elsewhere. Maybe we could put it on that empty lot on 3rd street across the street from golden valley brewpub.


Gotta love the candor of that "republican think tank idea." (plus the proud happy face symbol for emphasis.) The party of Lincoln certainly has evolved (devolved?) under new leadership.
In other words:

"I'm aboard now - PULL UP THE LADDERS."


I have seen a number of people emphasize enforcing the law with this group.....and I guess I’m not clear on what means.... issuing citation to people that have little money doesn’t seem to make sense...so..do we put them in an already crowded jail?....impound their vehicles and make them even more homeless?.....I don’t see a viable endgame with enforcement action without an alternative option for these people.....

Don Dix

A 'think tank' is supposedly a group of 'experts'. An expert is one which has authoritative or comprehensive knowledge of, or a skill of a particular subject. Which, if any, of these 'local experts' can truly say they have experienced the conditions and hardships related to homeless living? Best answer, zero!

And, one should remember, government is made up of 'elected representatives of the people', not 'leaders'.



When laws are enforced the campers will move on. They are not from here - they migrate to cities where their livestyle is accepted.

Yes - a few will be arrested and IF we create a quality program like Rhode Island their treatment will begin in there and be closely monitored afterwards.

McMinnville is at a huge advantage. We can look at Seattle and Portland then take a look at Rhode Island.

Now we need to elect representatives (thanks Don Dix) that want to fix the problem, help the campers and not continue to profit financially by continuing to "count heads" or declare "emergencies"


You didn't really answer my questions.... Citations won't do it and jailing people (temporarily) simply passes the problem on to the criminal justice system that probably can't handle the numbers. Offering treatment is great, but their not all addicts.....when you say they are "not from here"....what about the people that have jobs?

My skepticism about the success of an enforcement only plan remain....

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