East Oregonian : E.O. (Pendleton, OR) 1888-current, July 13, 2019, WEEKEND EDITION, Page A4, Image 4

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East Oregonian
Saturday, July 13, 2019
News Editor
Hermiston Editor
Founded October 16, 1875
Tip of the Hat,
kick in the pants
t would be difficult to find a bet-
ter example of the wise use of
taxpayer dollars than the nearly
complete new Pendleton Fire Station
About two years ago local voters
approved $9 million in funding for
the new fire station and it looks like
the project will be completed on time
and — most importantly — under
That’s says a lot for the project
contractors, officials and elected
leaders who steered the venture. It
shows that the proper use of taxpayer
dollars was a high priority.
The project is one of those neces-
sary items every community even-
tually must address. Emergency ser-
vice projects are never cheap but
they are essential.
This time voters can be assured
that their decision to fork over $9
million was the right choice, and
more importantly, that their money
was used in a wise fashion.
The contentious Oregon Leg-
islative session may be over but a
kick in the pants to those who are
ensuring the the fallout from its
end isn’t over. Senate leaders are
preparing to fine Republicans for
their eight-day walkout. The fines
— up to $3,500 — could be sent out
soon. There is nothing illegal about
the move but it smacks of retaliation.
Just because you can do something
doesn’t mean you should. Sending
fines to Republicans lawmakers who
walked out will create even more
strife and leave a sour taste for vot-
ers from a session that is already rife
with instability.
A tip of the hat to the Eastern
Oregon Women’s Coalition for
sponsoring its first economic summit
July 26 at Hermiston High School.
Staff photo by Ben Lonergan
Apparatus bays near completion as the work on Pendleton’s new Fire Station One wraps up.
The effort is designed to spark dis-
cussion about challenges rural Ore-
gon faces — especially regarding its
economy — and will attract some
big names such as U.S. Rep. Greg
Walden. Efforts like the economic
summit are crucial for our region
and provide a viable platform for
building a strong future.
A tip of the hat to those who are
doing their part to make sure this
summer is fire free. There haven’t
been many forest fires — yet — this
summer but one statistic should give
all of us pause. Too many range and
forest fires are still ignited through
human error and negligence. All of
us, as we recreate this summer, need
to remember to use caution — espe-
cially when the fire danger is high —
and be aware that our actions could
lead to serious damage to the places
we love.
Following guidelines on fire and
camp safety and paying attention
will go a long way toward slashing
fires that can cost millions and put
lives at risk.
Another state green
program flounders
frustrated about this? Willamette
Week quoted Jeff Allen, executive
tate government is once again director of Forth, an electric vehi-
supplying just what residents
cle advocacy group. One thing Wil-
lamette Week‘s excellent article did
have come to expect from
state programs devised to make Ore- not mention is that Forth is actually,
in part, a front for electrical utilities,
gon green: failure.
The Oregon Clean Vehicle Rebate chargers for electric cars and electric
Program was set up to subsidize the car manufacturers. Small wonder
they are so passionate about grab-
purchase of electric cars for Orego-
bing those tax dollars.
nians. Low and moderate income
The Legislature has shown a real
Oregonians can get the most — up
thirst to create programs to encour-
to $2,500 toward a purchase. If you
are curious if you could qualify, low age Oregonians to get more green.
and moderate income is defined as
It was one of the big promises built
less than 120% of area
into the proposed car-
median income for the
bon tax, House Bill
household size. For the
that died this
Bend-Redmond area
past session. But the
RECEIVED 4,004 problem-plagued Ore-
that is $91,800 for a
family of four.
APPLICATIONS gon Clean Vehicle
Guess how many
FOR ELECTRIC Rebate Program isn’t
applications the state
the first time such pro-
has processed for peo-
grams have floundered.
ple of low and moder-
The most spectacular
ate income.
example is the BETC,
Zero. That’s since
the Business Energy
the program launched
Tax Credit. It was just
about two years ago.
as well-intentioned — aimed at giv-
“The state has received 4,004
ing tax breaks for green energy proj-
applications for electric vehicle
ects. It was abused and exploded
rebates,” according to the Willa-
into a mess. A New Mexico truck-
mette Week. “It has processed lit-
tle over half of them. It has received ing company used it to try to collect
millions in Oregon tax credits by
581 applications from low-income
registering trucks in Oregon, with-
car buyers. It has processed none.”
out really driving much in Oregon.
It’s unfair to put all the blame on
A second example has been Ore-
the state. AAA sued, arguing that
gon’s Clean Fuels Program. Fuel
under Oregon law the money raised
producers blocked public disclosure
from a 0.5% tax on new cars had
of important information about how
to be used toward road repairs. The
the program really works.
program was put on hold until that
So when legislators come back
case was resolved. But the state also
next year bursting with promises
doesn’t have enough resources to
about how it will work, there are
even run the program.
plenty of reasons not to believe them.
You know who is particularly
Bend Bulletin
Street paving
projects long
This letter is directed at
those who think the choice
of street paving projects is
wrong. Larry Platek, I can’t
speak to Northwest Sev-
enth or Eighth, but I can
sure speak about Southeast
Byers. If you have driven
down that street lately you
will no longer be able to
play dodge the potholes
because there are far too
many to be able to dodge
I live between 11th and
12th off Southeast Byers
and I drive that street
at least twice a day and
frankly I’ll walk to town
before I’ll drive if I’m just
going to the post office
or to get a haircut, etc.,
because of the street con-
ditions. Southeast Byers is
a main avenue of travel for
parents taking their chil-
dren to school and for the
school buses, and it is now
so full of potholes that it is
not safe. I am so glad that
after 10 years of bitching
it will finally get paved;
that you don’t know. As for
Bob’s and Rob’s streets, I
would surmise that they
are in similar conditions or
they wouldn’t be scheduled
to be paved.
Barbara Ann Wright
Trump should
walk the
talk about
disrespecting the
The latest dust-up over
Megan Rapinoe and the lin-
gering flap over the Colin
Kaepernick issue of disre-
specting the flag beg the
question: How can the false
patriots in this country
totally absolve Trump for
his past incidents of same?
Hiding behind mommy’s
skirt and daddy’s money
and a phony medical reason
to avoid military service
during the Vietnam War
is leaps and bounds more
shameful and disrespectful
than the actions of the two
people he seeks to demean.
Let’s not forget his end-
less disrespect of the late
Unsigned editorials are the opinion of
the East Oregonian editorial board. Other
columns, letters and cartoons on this page
express the opinions of the authors and not
necessarily that of the East Oregonian.
Sen. John McCain and
all service members that
happened to be captured
during hostilities while in
the uniform Trump was too
scared to wear. Our pres-
ident is a shameless cow-
ard. Bone spurs don’t go
away on their own; let’s see
X-rays and/or scars of this
no doubt phony medical
He continuously bad-
gered Obama for his birth
certificate — let’s have an
in-depth investigation into
his past medical records
concerning this rich kid’s
excuse for not serving. A
stable genius? He’s threat-
ened to sue any school that
he attended if they released
his grades. A brilliant busi-
nessman? He won’t release
his taxes, fearful that the
truth will come out about
his lack of business acu-
men. The king of debt he
called himself.
If he has any good qual-
ities, he should finally dis-
play them — although I’m
sure he’s not capable of the
humility required for that
small task.
David Gracia
The East Oregonian welcomes original letters of 400 words or less on public issues and public policies
for publication in the newspaper and on our website. The newspaper reserves the right to withhold
letters that address concerns about individual services and products or letters that infringe on the rights
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or via mail to Andrew Cutler,
211 S.E. Byers Ave.
Pendleton, OR 97801