News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Letters to the Editor - 4/14/2021

Go to five-day schedule now

To the Editor:

The Sisters School District recently went to a four-day school week for all grades. This is a step in the right direction.

Currently Oregon State regulations and guidelines would allow for Sisters Schools to operate five-days-a-week, in-person school. The Sisters School Administration has decided four days is enough. Fridays will be for “pushout, professional development, and common planning time for our staff.” Somehow in previous years, these tasks were completed with students in school five days a week.

In April-June we can prevent additional loss of education time. Our children deserve this. There is no reason preventing a swift return to a normal five-day school week. I don’t see grocery clerks asking for “pushout days.” I don’t see truck drivers asking for no-drive Fridays to check the air pressure in their tires.

Almost everyone in this community pays income taxes or property taxes, even if you rent you indirectly pay property taxes. A significant portion of these taxes goes to support our school system. Should we expect a school system operating at 80 percent? It’s time for our school system to be at 100 percent.

Steve Barlow

Political virus

To the Editor:

COVID-19 has accentuated sharp differences in worldview and faith in scientific facts among Americans. I recently stopped at a garage sale in an upscale rural neighborhood outside Sisters. I quickly returned to my car to get my mask and was told by the home owner not to worry about a mask “because he was a Republican!”

I was stunned by his point of view, and see now that this has truly become a “political virus”!

Sharon Booth

Support for fire district bond

To the Editor:

Cindy Kettering started as a volunteer firefighter/EMT in 1990. She has been a paid professional fire inspector since 2004. Cindy is currently deputy fire marshal/EMT with Bend Fire & Rescue.

Cindy has been an outstanding board member for the Cloverdale Rural Fire Protection District for many years. Cindy has a bachelor’s degree with honors in public management, specializing in emergency management. Cindy is an NFPA-certified Firefighter I, Fire Investigator, Fire Inspector, certified in public fire/life safety education and a wildland-interface firefighter documented with Oregon Department of Public Safety, Standards & Training.

Honesty, integrity and outstanding public service are core values with which she operates. Cindy is vastly more qualified than her opponent. Cindy’s experience and education continue to serve the residents of the Cloverdale Rural Fire Protection District with excellence.

David Hiller

Former volunteer firefighter, engineer, lieutenant and captain with CRFPD

Concerns about development

To the Editor:

I wonder how many residents of greater Sisters have read the city’s comprehensive plan? It is not for the faint of heart. I was struck by two things in particular: 1. The fiction of the urban growth boundary (UGB), and 2. the lack of an attempt to determine the optimal population (including tourists) for greater Sisters in order to maintain a comfortable standard of living.

As for the first, the city establishes an UGB. Then developers and speculators buy the adjacent property and pressure the City to expand the boundary, which it does. Then the process is repeated. As for the second, critical to the quality of life here is to reign in population explosion to which the city seems to be oblivious.

This is not 1821, when resources seemed endless. Signs of the threats to the quality of life are all around us: the unsightly traffic barrier at the east entrance to town, the need for more roundabouts because of smothering traffic, the need for the City to drill wells because of a lack of water, the need to register and soon pay a fee to hike in wilderness areas, the lack of parking at snow parks, and so forth. Meanwhile, the City is sacrificing the Forest Service land by slicing it into industrial lots for no compelling reason and it appears to be itching to give final approval to destruction of the remaining Forest Service land for urban sprawl.

All of this begs the question, “When will the City Council act in the best interests of the citizens of greater Sisters and not special interests?”

Perhaps the City Council should be abolished and replaced with a form of government that is responsive to the best interests of the citizenry.

Gary Leiser


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