Polk County Voices Polk County Itemizer-Observer • November 8, 2017 4A LETTERS TO THE EDITOR Story missed the mark in Monmouth WANT TO WRITE A LETTER? Letters to the editor are lim- ited to 300 words. Longer let- ters will be edited. Election-related letters of all types are limited to 100 words. Writers are limited to one elec- tion-related letter per election season. Election letters from writers outside of Polk County are not accepted. Each writer is restricted to one letter per 30-day period. Letters that are libelous, ob- scene or in bad taste will not be printed. Attacks by name on businesses or individuals will not be printed. Letters to the editor that are obvious promotions for a busi- ness, products or services will not be printed. Letters must include the au- thor’s name, address and tele- phone number. This includes letters submitted via the I-O’s website. Names and cities of residence are published; street addresses and telephone numbers are used for verifica- tion purposes only. Letters must be submitted from individuals, not organiza- tions, and must be original submissions to the I-O, not copies of letters sent to other media. Letters of thanks to busi- nesses, individuals and organ- izations are limited to 10 names. The deadline for letters to the editor is 10 a.m. Monday. Letters submitted may not be retractable after this deadline. — Reach us at: Mail: Editor, Polk County Itemizer-Observer, P.O. Box 108, Dallas, OR 97338. Fax: 503-623-2395. Email: email@example.com. Office: 147 SE Court St., Dallas. PUBLIC AGENDA Public Agenda is a listing of upcoming meetings for gov- ernmental and nongovernmental agencies in Polk County. To submit a meeting, send it at least two weeks before the actual meeting date to the Itemizer-Observer via email (firstname.lastname@example.org). — WEDNESDAY, NOV. 8 • Independence Heritage Museum Commission — 4 p.m., Independence Heritage Museum, 112 S. Third St., Independ- ence. 503-838-1212. • Monmouth Library Advisory Board — 7 a.m., Monmouth Public Library, 168 Ecols St. S., Monmouth. 503-838-0725. • Monmouth Parks and Recreation Board — 7 p.m., Volun- teer Hall, 144 Warren St. S., Monmouth. 503-838-0725. • Polk County Board of Commissioners — 9 a.m., Polk County Courthouse, ﬁrst ﬂoor conference room, 850 Main St., Dallas. 503-623-8173. THURSDAY, NOV. 9 • Polk County Fire District No. 1 Board — 6 p.m., Central Station 90, 1800 Monmouth St., Independence. 503-838-1510. • Western Days Commission — 7 p.m., Independence Civic Center, 555 S. Main St., Independence. 503-838-1212. • Falls City City Council — 6 p.m., Falls City Community Cen- ter, 320 N. Main St., Falls City. 503-787- 3631. MONDAY, NOV. 13 • Dallas School Board — 6:30 p.m., Dallas School District of- ﬁce, 111 SW Ash St., Dallas. 503-623-5594. TUESDAY, NOV. 14 • Independence City Council — 7 p.m., Independence Civic Center, 555 S. Main St., Independence. 503-838-1212. • Polk County Board of Commission work session — 9 a.m., Polk County Courthouse, BOC oﬃce, 850 Main St., Dallas. 503- 623-8173. • WIMPEG Board of Directors — Noon, Volunteer Hall, 144 Warren St. S., Monmouth. WEDNESDAY, NOV. 15 • Monmouth Planning Commission — 7 p.m., Volunteer Hall, 144 Warren St. S., Monmouth. 503-838-0725. • Polk County Board of Commissioners — 9 a.m., Polk County Courthouse, ﬁrst ﬂoor conference room, 850 Main St., Dallas. 503-623-8173. Herb Swett’s coverage of the Oct. 17 Monmouth City Council meeting gives the impression that the city is facing an onslaught of pop- ulation growth (“Population growth behind Monmouth zoning change,” Oct. 25). Nothing could be further from the truth. Nowhere in staff’s presen- tation to the city council did they provide evidence of current, or even anticipated, population pressures. In fact, my testimony pointed to a report recently released by Portland State Universi- ty’s Population Research Center, finding that Mon- mouth will experience rela- tively slow growth for the next 50 years. Further, I showed that the Planning Commission, which had recommended the City Council approve the zone change, failed to conform to its own ordinance standards for zone changes. The city council, never- theless, chose to ignore much of my testimony and voted for a zone change to make way for high-density housing in a seasonal wet- land at the south edge of town. No conditions were set by either the commis- sion or the council to en- sure that construction be integrated with the wetland, which covers more than 50 percent of the property, in a manner to reduce pooling of water during winter rains. Wendy Hudson Monmouth Teachers are amazing We all hear that teachers have an extremely difficult job, but no one can fully appreciate it until they ex- perience it. I was fortunate enough to have that expe- rience with the physical education teachers at LaCreole Middle School: Mark Hess, Andy Jackson, Julie Petersen and Jen Reinhardt. What I wit- nessed was nothing short of amazing. The sheer number of kids they work with, all their quirky personalities, the noise level, and having to repeat the same instruc- tions over and over and over again. I was exhausted just watching. The teachers were patient, fun, efficient, and dealt with five things coming at them all at once. I was baffled, astonished, and awed. The next time you see them (or any other teacher for that matter) around town, be sure to give them a pat on the back for the excellent job they are doing for the stu- dents in our community. Alice Bibler Dallas BOC not enforcing zoning codes See something interesting happening in Polk County? Call us at 503-623-2373. We check out your news tips! This is the second year as a property owner I paid taxes without representa- tion. It is the obligated du- ties of our three commis- sioners to enforce the land use laws of the county and state. Our Polk County com- missioners are aware of what violations are ongoing by this commercial/indus- trial wood manufacturing business being run in a resi- dential zoned neighborhood since spring 2016. The prop- erty owner does not live at these premises, so he also needs to be accountable. Maybe I am dealing with politics because it is not the residential land use laws. Vote with your conscious not the party. Juanita Robson West Salem White House ‘adult day care center’ Well, the organ grinder and his monkeys are still alive and well at the White House. The EPA chief, Scott Pruitt, states “the war on coal is over,” and wants to repeal the 2015 climate poli- cy that saves approximately 3,600 lives a year. Toxic cleanup of the Willamette River is in peril due to changes the EPA wants to make. On Dec. 22, 2016, Trump stated, “the United States must strengthen and ex- pand its nuclear capability until such time as the world comes to its senses regarding nukes.” Isn’t that like playing with matches in a dynamite factory? When will he come to his senses? On Oct. 13, Trump pro- poses cutting billions in medical subsidies — so much for his “big heart.” And let’s not forget Sarah Sanders. Her sarcastic attitude is hard to swallow day after day when she is attempting to clarify what Trump states, such as the comment, “the president wasn’t criticizing previous administration, just stating a fact,” when he said no one called families of fallen soldiers. Trump’s former campaign manager is under house ar- rest for “conspiracy against the United States” and money laundering. On Oct. 8, Sen. Bob Cork- er called it correctly when he said, “the White House has become an adult day- care center.” Lord help us all. Cliff Brown Dallas Old Legion member would be proud The American Legion Post 33 lost its longtime member, Ed Pomeroy. Ed passed away earlier this year with 70 years member- ship in the Independence post. Ed would come to the meetings, sometimes just Ed and myself, which was the case of the last meeting he would attend last May. He talked about his mili- tary service, life around In- dependence, and the possi- bility of his reaching 100 years old. However, Ed’s main con- cern which he brought up at each meeting was sup- porting the Independence Heritage Museum. Ed was passionate about the mu- seum in general, but his heart was in the military exhibit. With Veteran’s Day this month, the Independence Heritage Museum is having a grand re-opening of the military exhibit. Unfortu- nate that Ed passed away before the completion of the project and the opening on Nov. 10. I’m sure that Ed would have liked what is proposed for the exhibit. Even with Ed’s passing away he asked that contributions in his memory be made to the Independence Heritage Museum. Polk should consider home rule Kari Meyer is an eighth- grade teacher at Talmadge Middle School. Kari is al- ways doing something kind of someone else. Her sisters decided to return the favor and do some- thing to surprise Kari on her birthday. So Saturday, Nov. 4, the family all met for breakfast at Independence Grill to celebrate her birthday. After the extended family of 11 was seated and chatting, a surprise 12th family mem- ber arrived — it was Kari’s son, Zachary. He had left home in early August to at- tend college in Colorado. He was not going to come home until Christmas break. His aunts and grand- parents felt he would be the best present they could give Kari, so they secretly arranged for him to fly home for the birthday sur- prise. The secret was kept from Zachary’s dad and his little sisters as well because we couldn’t risk someone spilling the beans. A good time was had by all, and Kari learned that birth- day miracles still do happen. Open letter to the citizens of Polk County regarding Commissioner Craig Pope’s coauthored editorial oppos- ing Home Rule in Douglas County. Pope’s hands aren’t full enough managing the affairs of Polk County? You’re paying him $70,188 annual- ly, plus an additional 35 per- cent for benefits and PERS, to meddle in Douglas Coun- ty’s affairs? We must wonder why Polk County’s commis- sioners are concerned with a Home Rule initiative hap- pening in our community. Are they afraid it’s catching? Let’s hope so; and, we can help you get started. It is offensive and taboo for a commissioner from another county to involve himself in the politics and affairs of another local gov- ernment. Pope opposed our charter on behalf of com- missioners who are under suspicion, as recently re- ported in the Oregonian, for misuse of Federal Title III dollars. The same commis- sioners who closed the county’s libraries, out- sourced public health serv- ices, logged old growth trees at county parks and ap- proved planning permits al- lowing a foreign corporation to take private properties through eminent domain. Our charter calls for five elected commissioners giv- ing outlying rural commu- nities a voice, and a profes- sional county manager; not just someone whose only qualification is “they can win elections.” Polk County citizens are very generous considering your median income is about $42,000 and you pay your commissioners over $70,000 a year, and that doesn’t even include the cost of their benefit pack- age or PERS. Our commis- sioner’s salaries are $121,000+ with benefits and PERS. A bit out of whack when the average annual income in Douglas County is right around $38,000. Starting to see our point? Reach out to us at 541- 863-4449 so we can help Polk County citizens with Home Rule; where citizens at the grass roots level institute measures requiring account- ability from overpaid elected officials. Polk County needs a Charter too. Call today. Pat Ediger Independence Diana Larson and Stacey McLaughlin Steven Russell Independence Visit from son perfect gift HOW TO REACH US NEWSROOM Emily Mentzer ..............Editor/Monmouth/Independence Reporter ....email@example.com Vol. 142, No. 45 (USPS) - 437-380) The official newspaper of Polk County • Serving Polk County families since 1875 Winner of 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014 General Excellence Awards from the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association Periodicals postage paid at Dallas, OR, Independence, OR and Monmouth, OR. 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