Letters to the Editor for April 29, 2014

Atkins is the best candidate

The question before voters is, “Who is the best candidate to lead the Sheriff’s Office?”

The answer is simple, Chuck Atkins. Out of all of the candidates vying for the position, Mr. Atkins has the best working knowledge of the department. He has the greatest level of respect by all who would be working for him, which is quality that has been earned through years of quality leadership. He has the working knowledge to interact with the other agencies and departments within the county. He knows the talents and qualities of the people that work for the sheriff’s office. He is by far the best qualified candidate for the job of Sheriff.

Jim Payne, Vancouver

DOE should study oil train climate impacts

The Pacific Northwest is at the crossroads of becoming the largest transporter of dirty “fracked” oil from the Midwest. This is the same crude oil in the derailment and explosion in Lac-Megantic, Quebec that killed 47 people.

The city of Seattle called for a statewide moratorium on new oil by rail infrastructure. It is time for all cities along the rail corridor to follow suit.

Please urge community leaders to join Seattle and pass a resolution for a statewide moratorium on oil by rail until the DOE can study the cumulative environmental and safety impact for all communities from North Dakota to Vancouver.

Tell the DOE that they should study the climate impacts from the end user emissions. Putting our health and safety at risk is not worth it. The State of Washington can do better that this.

Sharon Rickman, Vancouver

‘We must act as one’

One oil terminal along the Washington/Oregon coast impacts both the shorelines, and every mile of train track in both states. Add to that the insatiable hunger among the oil companies and the railroads, we can expect multiple oil terminals up and down the currently pristine coastline, and untold amounts of dangerous crude oil trains crossing both Washington and Oregon 24/7 for the foreseeable future.

The risks exponentially outweigh the paltry rewards. Disaster recovery requirements for even one rail catastrophe which could hit any town along the way will be astronomical.

Loss of tourism, access to our coastline, and general enjoyment of the environment are at the top of the list of financial and lifestyle costs that every citizen will bear. Who will want to move here? This expansion will not create significant jobs.

Both Washington and Oregon need an immediate moratorium on transport and processing or shipment of oil and flammable products for whatever time it takes for all houses of Washington and Oregon legislatures to close this down permanently.

Karen Hengerer, Vancouver

Graser for sheriff

I retired from the United States Army in 1978, and joined the Clark County Sheriff’s Department.

After the academy, and time with a field training officer, I was assigned to work a night shift in Washougal and eastern Clark County. John Graser worked an overlapping shift. At the time John was an experienced deputy, very knowledgeable, safety conscious, and a good instructor. I had been good at what I did in the Army, but was new as a deputy, John gave me tips, short lessons and examples, to improve my performance, and ensure safety for both myself and the public. I appreciated the tips and lessons, because they did improve my performance.

Later in my time with the sheriff’s department, I worked for John as a detective while he commanded The Clark, Skamania Narcotic Task Force. This involved coordination and close association with the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office, the Port of Portland, Oregon State Highway Patrol, and the FBI. John in my opinion handled this very well. During this period he was a capable commander, and a good leader. Over the years, I have come to think of John as a friend.

John would be my choice for sheriff of Clark County. His demonstrated knowledge, leadership, ability to deal with, lead, and manage people, his social skills, should also make him your choice.

Harry E. Friberg, Vancouver