News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Letters to the Editor 9/14/2022

Rights and limitations

To the Editor:

I’m not a religious person; when it comes to believing in an afterlife I’m more or less an agnostic. Abortion should not be a religious issue, it should be a medical issue, where common sense leads to procedural rules. I believe in a woman’s right to choose, but that right must come with limitations.

It’s common sense that a woman wanting her sixth abortion in a year has a problem and it’s not that she’s been raped six times. Those limitations should be regulated and monitored by Congress, not the Supreme Court, and certainly not the President using his executive powers.

Why is this President so determined to allow unregulated abortions that in some cases are near murder? The Catholic Church expels women for getting an abortion but accepts Biden’s running amok with pen in hand defying his church. It seems that the church has the same problem that most democracies have; they can’t follow their own rules, while bending some to fit their current need. Why have we ditched common sense in America? Because common sense and compromise have given way to extreme partisanship.

Terry Coultas

Update on school construction

To the Editor:

As we welcome everyone back to school, I want to give you an update on the progress of consolidating our K-12 school campus with the construction of a new, K-5 elementary school.

Thanks to the construction bond that was approved by our community last year, the new school will be built next to our outdoor athletic stadium, close to our existing middle and high schools.

As we start this school year, our current elementary bulges with students. With the construction of the new school, we look forward to having four classes per grade level, increased gym and cafeteria space, not to mention a new library space to support our kinder through fifth-grade students. You can see draft renderings of the plans at

The May 2021 voter-approved bond initiative would yield $33.8 million. Due to a favorable bond market, we were actually able to raise $39.2 million. That’s the great news: As we all know, cost of goods and labor — especially those affecting the cost of building in Central Oregon — have also been rising. Over the summer, the team has done extensive work to ensure that we can build a beautiful building within our bond budget.

Many of the mentioned economic and supply chain issues have made our initial hope of a 2023/24 opening unrealistic. To avoid the educational disruption of a mid-school-year move, we are now preparing to commission the new elementary school in the spring of 2024 and move into the building before the start of the 2024/25 school year. This schedule will help us to control risks and costs, allow us to work with the best subcontractors, and to affect a more seamless transition into the new facility for our staff and students.

As we continue the work to complete our campus, we again thank the Sisters community. Thanks to our teaching staff, our school board, all those who attended the public design reviews, our bond oversight committee, and all our patrons for your ongoing support. We remain committed to keeping Sisters a great place to live and learn!

Curt Scholl

Superintendent of Sisters School District

Junipers and Whychus

To the Editor:

Just want to say how much we appreciated the August 31 edition’s stories about the juniper trees and the Whychus Creek. Enjoy the historical perspective too.

Thank you for broadening the type of information included in the paper; it enhances our ties to this great community.

Sara Stamey and Winston Saunders

What matters most to you

To the Editor:

Wow, what a ride to 77 years, no regrets. If something happened that was positive or negative, I always made sure I learned something, wrote it down, or kept it in my mental logbook.

Sharing my to-do list of what matters most with you.

I made a “What Matters Most List,” not set in stone. HA…. I check it several times as it changes almost every day.

Time is more valuable now than it has ever been in my life. Your greatest gift of all is your time. Use it wisely.

List your inner circle of friends and relatives. Positive thinkers, glass is half-full or better. These are the ones to spend your time with.

Distance yourself from doom-and-gloom negatives (people included), that can only take away your energy that will be better used to help others or do the things that matter to you and your inner circle.

Pay attention. There are those whom will take advantage of you. At this point in your life there is so much advertising that we are bombarded with, so it is difficult to tell who the bad guys are. I use my most trusted relative to help me.

Do what you really want to do. Things that make you feel good. Helping others and giving back comes to mind for me. I love tying flies for fly-fishing and teaching fly-tying. So that’s what I do.

What do I do with all my stuff? Stopped worrying about it. Use it when I want, give it to others that need it, donate it as I move further to my ever-changing capabilities. I can’t take it with me.

Enough already. There is a point in life that more is not necessarily better. I think about what is enough for me or family, take the difference, and give it to someone or a nonprofit I trust.

I laugh every day. Think about something that makes me smile.

Having fun, enjoying our Central Oregon playground, the super people who live here and this beautiful town of Sisters.

Sherry Steele

Take another look at electric vehicles

To the Editor:

There’s been a fair amount of debate/discourse over the two free EV charging stations here in Sisters. Several have implied that the people who drive EVs are wealthy tourists, or heavens forbid — Californians!

Regardless of who actually uses these charging stations, I want to debunk the theory that EVs are purely toys for the rich. According to every source I can find, the no. 1-selling vehicle in America is the Ford F-150, and it has been for a long while. If you do a bit of further research, you find that the most popular model is the F-150 Crew Cab in XLT trim.

A simple browser search will put you on to one of several credible resources, which list the “true cost of ownership” over five years, with 15,000 miles of travel assumed annually.

The F-150 comes in at $44,302 over five years - which takes into consideration fuel costs, repair and maintenance, insurance, depreciation, etc.

Compare that five-year cost of ownership to the entry-level Tesla Model 3 at $38,183 over five years — which is a bit over $6,000 less.

All of those bougie 2021 Toyota Sienna XLE Hybrid minivan drivers are getting hit for a projected $42,894 — aren’t they fancy! If you want to step up to Tesla’s SUV Model Y, it’s going to cost you $41,547 over five years — still less than both the minivan and the truck — and just barely over a 2021 Honda Pilot LX at $41,086.

In my further research, I found several pure EVs that are actually quite economical to operate over five years, with the Mini Hardtop EV leading the way at $21,435, and the Nissan Leaf at $25,531. If you need something bigger, the Hyundai Ioniq will run you $31,663 over five years.

Additionally, Chevrolet has just announced production of an EV Equinox that will be priced under $30,000; however, five-year cost-to-own statistics are obviously unavailable at this time.

I understand it’s tough to let go of preconceived notions. Society as a whole could use just a tad less invective and a bit more fair-minded (and civil) discussion. When you learn the facts, the future doesn’t become so scary. Maybe the next time, those that have previously maligned the “richies” driving the EVs will instead think to themselves, “Jeez... there goes a smart person in an EV. I need to think about getting me one of those.”

As for myself, I’m still a “dummy” driving a petrol-fueled dinosaur — but when it’s time to replace it, I know what I’ll be looking for.

JC Wilson


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