Freedoms allow us to ignore cherished rights

Last week on Veterans Day I was reading an assortment of newspaper articles, e-mails, and web site and social media posts about how important this day is for our country. Veterans Day is important, of course, not only to thank the hundreds of thousands of veterans who made sacrifices to defend our country, but for all Americans to think about the freedom and liberties we enjoy, because of their sacrifices. The freedom and liberties that people in many countries will never know. But on this particular Veterans Day, with flags flying in the brisk wind and sunshine, it occurred to me that our freedoms can at times be a double edged sword. As Americans we can pretty much say and write what we want, read any book, see any movie or play or listen to any music we wish.

Small business owners need to understand Affordable Care Act

The U.S. Small Business Administration is committed to educating small business owners about the facts surrounding the Affordable Care Act, so that you can make an informed decision about what makes sense for your business – including whether you choose to apply for a tax credit. Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, small businesses are benefitting from improved accountability and affordability in the health insurance market.

Lonesome Larry has lots of friends

In 1992, a single male sockeye salmon managed to swim 900 miles from the mouth of the Columbia River to Redfish Lake in Idaho’s Sawtooth Mountains, the end of his migratory journey. Biologists dubbed the sole survivor, “Lonesome Larry.” By 2010, the Northwest Power and Conservation Council happily reported record-setting runs for sockeye — nearly 387,000 had climbed the fish ladders at Bonneville Dam. The numbers, which fluctuate annually, stand at 186,000 this year. The resurgence of the sockeye is not unique.

Parental involvement is key to children’s success

It’s that time of year again when busy parents are sending their kids out the door to meet the school bus or dropping them off at school. Expectations are high that students will be paired with great teachers who spend the necessary time helping them learn, supervising their safety and keeping parents abreast of their children’s progress. I recently formed an Education Kitchen Cabinet, made up of local educators, because I want to know how we can ensure kids have the best education. I’ve learned we have very dedicated teachers who care about kids and their education. But they tell me they can only do so much. The other component in the success of a child’s education is parental involvement.

State law allows direct election of the mayor under Prop 1

The column written by Battle Ground City Councilors Michael Ciraulo and Adrian Cortes was interesting commentary but plainly wrong when they state: “[i]n July 2013 a majority coalition arbitrarily changed our form of government…” The Battle Ground City Council cannot change their form of government. That takes a vote of the people. My understanding of what Ciraulo and Cortes are upset about is the procedures the Battle Ground Council adopted to elect their mayor. They don’t make any complaints about their city management, in fact they seem to compliment it.

BG officials offer perspectives on government changes

“It was the best of times, it was the worst of times” wrote Charles Dickens in his “Tale of Two Cities;” a magnificent author and book which still provides relevance to contemporary generations. What does this have to do with our community here in Battle Ground? As city leaders within Battle Ground, we would like to offer some personal perspectives on the significant seismic governance changes occurring within the communities of Battle Ground and Washougal.

A review of the state operating budget

Now that we’ve had time to review and digest the state’s new 2013-15 budget, how did lawmakers do? As with all budgets there are good and bad items included, though the biggest policy success was that lawmakers allowed the 2010 “temporary” tax increases to remain temporary and to expire as promised on July 1. The enacted budget also includes revenue and spending projections that balance in compliance with the state’s new four-year balanced budget requirement.

Editorial assertions about youth not based on facts

The July 30 Camas-Washougal Post-Record editorial “Is today’s gridlock turning off tomorrow’s leaders?” is an example of why such articles appear on the opinion pages of the newspaper. Unfortunately, several assertions are based on assumptions, not facts. The article suggests young people 18 to 25 years of age want no part of public service and the voting process because they “see so many power struggles, so much political posturing, nastiness and gridlock at all levels.”

Camas congresswoman should also consider the plights of other families

Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler and her husband, Daniel, termed “miraculous” the birth of their daughter, Abigail, several weeks ago. They had chosen to continue the pregnancy after receiving the diagnosis of Potter’s syndrome which is essentially the failure of the baby’s kidneys to form. I am not a fan of Rep. Herrera Beutler’s politics, but I was saddened by the news of the baby’s condition and what it would mean to her family. I also viewed the situation as an incredible opportunity for this congresswoman to experience firsthand the agony of a family faced with the heartbreaking choices involved in managing such a pregnancy.

Is today’s gridlock turning off tomorrow’s leaders?

With beautiful mid-summer days in full swing, it would be easy to completely forget about the so-called important issues we normally wrestle with locally in Camas, Washougal and throughout Clark County. Especially if you are a young person 18 to 25 years of age. Really, do we think many of our 18- to 25-year-olds, currently enjoying days at the river, trips to the beach, concerts in Portland or getting prepared for college in the fall are going to give scant attention, right now, to the issues that may affect them considerably in years to come?