June 18, 2002
Serving Western Deschutes County
Sisters, Oregon

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The Nugget Newspaper
Sisters, Oregon
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Letters, letters, letters
The Nugget welcomes contributions from its readers, which must include the writer's name, address and phone number. Letters to the Editor is an open forum for the community and contains unsolicited opinions not necessarily shared by the Editor. The Nugget reserves the right to edit, omit, respond or ask for a response to letters submitted to the Editor. Letters should be no longer than 300 words. Unpublished items are not acknowledged or returned. The deadline for all letters is noon Monday.

To the Editor:

I was very fascinated with Eric Dolson's editorial in the June 5 edition of The Nugget titled, "Fund schools, not state cops.'

I found his rancorous assault on the Oregon State Police to be out of touch with reality and based on erroneous assumptions about services provided by the OSP and the topic of public safety in general.

Mr. Dolson claims that, "There is no correlation between the OSP patrols and highway safety."

It is a fact that during the past several years, intoxicated drivers have accounted for approximately 50 percent of all traffic fatalities in the state of Oregon. In 2001, OSP patrol officers arrested and removed 5,389 intoxicated drivers from the highways.

If we are to believe Mr. Dolson, removing those drunks was unnecessary and a waste of public expense since those arrests had no impact, whatsoever, on making our highways safer. Think about that.

Mr. Dolson also states that the OSP, "has ceased to have a significant function since cell phones connect nearly everyone on the highways."

If I understand him correctly, he is claiming that cell phones can effectively replace OSP patrol officers. I have heard other ludicrous arguments favoring termination of the OSP, but this cell phone argument is in a class all its own.

If Mr. Dolson were to apply this same logic to public education, he should be promoting the release of teachers rather than hiring new ones. Think of the millions of public dollars that would be saved.

After all, with the information highway of the Internet, would it not be more cost effective to replace our teachers with computers? If cell phones can replace OSP troopers, why not have computers replace teachers? The logic is the same.

Ralph L. Show

Editors Note: Mr. Show is a retired police officer, a 26-year veteran of the Oregon State Police.

* * *

To the Editor:

After asbestos was found in a house which was burned during a "Burn to Learn" exercise at 461 South Elm Street, we are now faced with some serious questions in our community about regulations within the fire department and the ability, in city planning, to allow burns to happen with a loose association of a check and balance system that does not insure safety both for firefighters and the public.

The owner of this little lot near the Village Green Park does not live in Sisters. Ultimately, the responsibility of cleaning up the site is hers. It is understood that she followed the legal steps in donating this structure to the fire department by contracting the ECI (Environmental Consulting and Investigation) to identify asbestos.

The Department of Environmental Quality fulfilled its role when they tested the site and initiated an immediate clean-up of the harmful asbestos. There was a pile of ashes that we know asbestos was in sitting on one of Sisters' main streets during rodeo weekend when we have more people walking around than usual.

Obviously the owner of the property is ineffective, living out of town, but this happened in our town and it should be a more personal issue for those of us living here.

Are people in harm's way after asbestos has been released into the air locally? This question has yet to be addressed by anyone. If great precautions are taken so as not to disturb asbestos or burn it then it would seem that the ramifications could be severe and that follow up testing would be necessary to determine the extent of contamination.

Where was the tape and the warning sign that should have gone up at the site promptly after the discovery?

This situation occurred despite the precautions that were taken. Questions were asked to the firefighters during the burn about the toxicity of the synthetic materials inside (asbestos, drapes, couch, mattress, tar roof shingles and fridge) and despite their reassurances they were wrong.

If we cannot depend on the developers who wish to donate these old structures to gut them of toxic synthetics and the fire department to be more concerned about burning them and notifying the public when they do, then eventually this will happen again and public health will be compromised.

My suggestion is to ban these "Burn to Learn" exercises as Bend has done.

Sincerely,

Jeff McCaulou

* * *

To the Editor:

I was moved by your advocacy in the (June 5) issue of The Nugget. I felt immediately anxious to get off my butt and start working for my world in an educational and positive manner.

The bit about Royalty hit home. I disagreed with your sentiment about the importance of the noble Princess Diana. She was a giver, and charismatic -- a good combination. I believe you put her in a category of other such dynasty who just host this-such-event or watch-planes-fly.

She performed remarkable conscious actions for the world, which were altruistic and what all of us can and should do, always.

I agree that the drama in Royalty is overplayed. I believe each of us, as individuals, are very valuable in our small community, our state, our nation, our world, and that everyone can move mountains if they choose.

I want to briefly acknowledge your voice and move to better society. Thank you!

Also, I would like to recognize three individuals I know have made a difference, whether they know it or not: Heather Wester and her reason and strength on the school board; Neil Walker and his overseas humanitarianism; and Suzanna Ward and her endurance toward health and geriatric causes.

Not to mention all of the teachers and mentors out there in my life and others, who constantly assist others to be proactive and valuable in this world.

I advocate community service. I believe everyone has unique gifts to give, if only to advance the indispensability of those around them. Be your best!

Carrie Anne Ebner

* * *

To the Editor:

In reference to the article in The Nugget, June 5 issue about SOAR ("SOAR named library's 'family'") I am shocked.

It is Barbara Turner who drives the children to the library once a week to participate in the reading program. Tom Coffield has never accompanied her.

While Mr. Coffield's administrative duties are important to the SOAR program, it is the love and patience of people like Barbara that make it a success.

It's Barbara who spends time with the kids either at SOAR or driving them to school or taking the time to escort them to the library.

I would like for her to know her efforts have not gone unnoticed and she is very much appreciated.

Thank you Barbara.

Dara Bettencourt

* * *

To the Editor:

On Monday evening, June 10, Sisters Middle School's humble multipurpose room was transformed into a tropical paradise for our annual Eighth Grade Dinner Dance.

Students were treated to a delicious dinner and a fun dance to celebrate their promotion to high school.

We would like to thank the businesses and organizations who helped by contributing.

We had many adult helpers, as well: Jade Schneringer, Lori Kallberg, Patty and Jeff MacDonald, Deirdre and Charlie Kanzig, Karen Ellis, DeeDee Burke, Teresa Slavkovsky, Chris Davenport, Terri Rood, Tracy Poynor, Karla Barton, and Barb Haynes.

A special thanks to Mim Burke, who headed the parent organizing committee!

Sincerely,

Lora Nordquist, Principal

* * *

To the Editor:

We would like to thank the businesses and individuals who made the Sisters Elementary School Fifth Grade Graduation a wonderful celebration for the class of 2009.

Also, thanks to all the parents who gave their time and helped make this a special event.

Tracy Tandy and Shelly Cristiano for the Fifth Grade Graduation Decorating Committee

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