Letters to the Editor for Sept. 20, 2011

Re-elected ECFR Commission incumbents

The East County Volunteer Fire Fighters Association endorses the current fire commissioners for re-election.

Commissioners John Clancy, Jack Hoober and Gary Larson have served this community with integrity for many years. Their long-term vision and careful use of tax revenue have helped grow the fire district to meet the needs of our expanding community, while always staying within budget. Their stewardship of the fire district has resulted in the agency being financially stable — even in these tough economic times.

ECFR Volunteer Fire Fighters provided services valued at $374,000 to our community in 2010. Without the use of volunteers, the fire district could not afford to staff the three or four personnel commonly found on each ECFR apparatus. Volunteers are team members who are valued for their dedication and ongoing commitment to our citizens. We appreciate the opportunity to serve our community, and are honored to help our friends and neighbors.

Please join your ECFR volunteers in voting to re-elect Commissioners Clancy, Hoober and Larson.

Brad Baldwin, president, East County Volunteer Fire Fighters Association

Washougal candidates have impressive resumes

We are very impressed with four candidates for Washougal City Council who have made a commitment to improving the quality of life in our community.

Molly Coston, Jennifer McDaniel, Rod Morris and Joyce Lindsay demonstrate through their daily volunteer efforts that they want to build a better future for Washougal.

Molly regularly volunteers at Washougal High School and the Two Rivers Museum. She is president elect of the CW Rotary and is advisor to the youth Interact Club. She is also past chair of the Regional Transportation Council and past president of the League of Women Voters and has served on the Washougal Schools Foundation.

Jennifer McDaniel volunteers for Loaves & Fishes, Girl Scouts, is vice president of the board of directors of the Washougal Schools Foundation, and she supports the Humane Society.

Rod Morris has been a 33-year volunteer with the Washougal Fire Department, and you can find him at most community events, such as the 4th of July Celebration or at high school football games, where he is ready to provide medical assistance and fire safety.

Joyce Lindsay is vice president of the Columbia Gorge Women’s Association, serves on the C-W Rotary — where she chaired the Ducky Derby this year, she also volunteers for the Salvation Army, and is a volunteer for Santa’s Posse. Joyce also helped establish a scholarship program for women returning to college, and she helped create the Memorial Garden at Hathaway Elementary School.

Coston, McDaniel, Morris and Lindsay have contributed to the quality of life in Washougal. They know our community and are highly connected with our citizens. And, they have earned our trust to serve on Washougal City Council.

Roger Daniels and Julie Down, Washougal

CRC and Tweet 4 Camas

The Columbia River Crossing project (CRC) is the largest public works project ever in our region. It will bring light rail (MAX) to downtown Vancouver over a new I-5 bridge. Costs are expected to be at least $3.6 billion, with $1 billion for light rail which would serve only 2-10 percent of commuters. The new bridge has the exact same number of through lanes as currently exist.

The CRC has been severely criticized by investigators on both the left and right for inflated traffic and population predictions, and overly optimistic financial projections. Financing depends heavily on never-ending tolls on I-5 starting in 2014. State law was recently changed to allow tolling on I-205 as well. Rush hour bridge tolls in Seattle cost $3.50 one way, about $1700/year for a daily commuter, plus admin costs.

Meanwhile, the Camas and Washougal City Councils approved the CRC plan in 2008 via their C-TRAN representative with no public discussion or hearings in either city. C-TRAN has not yet committed to allow the whole district to vote on light rail funding, so North and East County voters may be cut out.

What can you do?

1) Vote for Initiative 1125 which would require tolls to be used for highway purposes only and prohibits permanent tolls.

2) Let your city council, county commissioners, and state legislators know you deserve to vote on this critical issue.

3) The CRC project is now going to the Federal government for approval, and the public comment period runs Sept 23 to October 24. Contact Congresswoman Herrera Beutler (www.herrerabeutler.house.gov).

4) Vote for Margaret Tweet for Camas City Council; See Tweet4camas.com.

Douglas Tweet, Camas

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