Opinion, Analysis, Discussion

Letter: Douglas County Commissioner should be involved in community activities

October 23, 2014 — 

He’s active in county events

I am going to vote for Mr. Chris Boice for the position of Douglas County Commissioner. Mr. Boice is a successful small businessman, who has been active in our county for many years. He is aware of the needs of the local residents; he listens and has shown a willingness to cooperate with others to get things done.

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Letter: Join the battle against Alzheimer’s, the sixth leading cause of death in the United States

October 23, 2014 — 

Help fight Alzheimer’s

Currently, more than 5 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s, the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S., but those numbers are set to skyrocket as the baby boomers age.

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Letter: Sutherlin city council candidate will work for the good of the town and do the will of the citizens

October 23, 2014 — 

Wayne Luzier for councilman

I met Wayne when I was five years old and a nurse laid him in my arms for me to hold on the ride home from the hospital.

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Letter: House District 2 candidate would find extensive business education useful

October 23, 2014 — 

Elect Atherton to House Dist. 2

Kerry Atherton is the only candidate qualified to be our next Oregon House District 2 representative. He has extensive education from Oregon State University majoring in business administration. He also took classes in personnel management, labor economics and business law. He understands the language and logistics of business. He is the logical person to get business and jobs into the Douglas County area.

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Letter: Douglas County commissioner candidate must have the free time to apply to the time-consuming job at hand

October 23, 2014 — 

My family will vote for Leif

At this time, for the following reasons, Chris Boice would not be our families’ choice. He is the owner of one business, just starting another, and with children still at home. These activities are enough to take up all of his time and energy, not leaving any for the time-consuming job of Douglas County commissioner.

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Letter: Cut wasteful political practices and abuse of executive power with your votes

October 22, 2014 — 

Time to clean up Congress

You can always tell that an election date is approaching when incumbent professional politicians like Representative Peter DeFazio exploit their franking privileges to mail out tens of thousands of campaign brochures at taxpayers’ expense by calling them “reports.”

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Letter: Our right to vote was won at a high price; use that right — fill out your ballot

October 22, 2014 — 

People are not voting?

I received a shocking campaign revelation today. A candidate’s representative came to my door to tell me about the individual running for office. He introduced himself and asked me a question, “Are you going to vote?”

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Letter: Short term demands a Douglas County commissioner that already knows the budgetary and county needs

October 22, 2014 — 

Gary Leif: ready from day one

The candidates for Douglas County commissioner this year are a refreshing, yet diverse group. I have had the honor of visiting with each of them. Once the remaining two years of Doug Robertson’s term is completed, we will have the opportunity to elect a four-year commissioner, as in a normal election cycle.

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Letter: Vote for knowledge and dependability in a Douglas County commissioner

October 22, 2014 — 

Count on an honest deal

I’ve been in Roseburg for 80 years; yep, born and raised here.

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Guest column: Foods should be labeled thoroughly and honestly

October 21, 2014 — 

Over the last few weeks, I have been receiving calls from clients and readers on the question of GMO, or genetically modified organisms, and the pending vote on Ballot Measure 92, here in Oregon. To be clear, I have never supported the use of GMO ingredients in food for man or beast. However, this column is about the label wrapped around the food, not the food itself.

So let’s start with a little background history on the government’s involvement in food labeling, and what led up to the feds deciding to step in. In 1906, the first food safety measure was passed called the Pure Food and Drug Safety Act. It prohibits interstate commerce in misbranded and adulterated foods, drinks and drugs. This was the result of an Upton Sinclair article published in the Washington Post describing the atrocious hygiene, health and safety conditions in the meat packing industry. This article, while sensational, brought to light many questionable food additives of the day.

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Letter: When voting for Roseburg city council, know these names

October 21, 2014 — 

Re-elect Rich, Cotterell, Kaser

I encourage voters to re-elect Mayor Larry Rich and Councilors Bob Cotterell and Steve Kaser to the Roseburg city council. I’ve been on the council with them this year. It‘s very clear all three men are devoted to the tasks at hand, give thoughtful attention to city issues, are polite in interaction with citizens and share a great deal of experience serving the city and elsewhere.

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Letter: Candidates with more to offer can defeat incumbents; vote ‘no’ on Douglas County Measure 10-134

October 21, 2014 — 

Term limits are not the answer

Douglas County Measure 10-134, asking for a two-term limit on Douglas County commissioners, must be defeated.

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Editorial: DeFazio’s record makes him the best candidate

October 21, 2014 — 

If nice-sounding sentiments remained the common denominator to choose the right candidate for office in our great republic then elections would probably a lot less controversial. Unfortunately, that isn’t the case.

American voters are often victim to wide-sweeping proclamations that sound good but offer little substance and, in the end, fail to hold up to the true test of time.

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Letter: Conservative ideology brings Republican endorsement for Douglas County commissioner candidate

October 20, 2014 — 

Boice gets Rep. endorsement

After researching all the candidates in the race for Douglas County commissioner, the Douglas County Republican Executive Committee has voted to endorse the candidacy of Chris Boice.

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Letter: Myrtle Creek veteran couple grateful for care at Roseburg Veterans Affairs Medical Center

October 20, 2014 — 

Excellent care at Roseburg VA

My husband and I are both veterans and have high praise for the Roseburg Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

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Letter: What is the future with regulated marijuana?

October 20, 2014 — 

Things to be considered

I see many cities and counties are already planning a way to tax “regulated marijuana” when it’s approved. As long as money starts rolling in, I guess we don’t have enough folks getting high (read the Police Log). After all, money is obviously more important than people’s lives.

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Letter: Douglas County commissioner should be an open, fairminded, fiscally responsible candidate

October 20, 2014 — 

Need Leif for commissioner

Gary Leif is someone I have known for more than 20 years. In that time I’ve found Gary to be honest, hard working and a person you could both trust and respect. I look around my home and see the beautiful photos of my family that Gary took over many years. These have special meaning to me; they have preserved special moments of my life.

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Editorial: Both candidates for Roseburg mayor up to the job

October 19, 2014 — 

Every city should have such a problem: Two candidates for mayor who are well qualified for the office and eager to serve their city.

For the second consecutive Roseburg mayoral election, voters will choose between incumbent Mayor Larry Rich and former city Councilor Mike Baker.

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Submit your election letters by Oct. 24

October 19, 2014 — 

Submit your election letters

The News-Review welcomes letters regarding candidates and measures on the Nov. 4 ballot. Our goal is to publish every letter we receive that fits our guidelines prior to the election. In order to do that, election letters must be submitted by Oct. 24. We cannot guarantee that letters submitted after that date will be published before Election Day.

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Letter: Be informed about GMO legislation

October 17, 2014 — 

A closer look at Measure 92

Recently, I found a pamphlet in my mailbox titled “Take a Closer Look at Measure 92.” It presumably landed in a lot of other mailboxes, as well. The pamphlet tries to persuade the reader to vote “no” on Measure 92, which asks legislation to require genetically modified food products to be labeled as such.

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Letter: Douglas County commissioner position may be nonpartisan, but people are not

October 17, 2014 — 

Vote for truth and integrity

Republican Gary Leif, Douglas County commissioner candidate, donates $250 to Democrat Kerry Atherton’s campaign (Orestar reporting). I realize the county commissioner seat is a nonpartisan seat, but the people filling them are not nonpartisan.

When I commented on this recently, Gary’s response was: “I didn’t really have a choice but to help him because he is getting me votes from the Democratic party (sic)…“. He went on to state that he mailed a check in the same amount to Dallas Heard. That’s about as open an admission of vote buying as I’ve ever seen!

Giving equal amounts to opposing candidates is wishy-washy at best and is evidence of lack of fiscal responsibility. Integrity is important. Integrity can be defined as “doing the right thing when no one is watching.” Along that line, Gary removed his comments the next day.

I have many friends and acquaintances in politics and some are candidates for office. Unless we share our vision for the county/state/country, I will not contribute to their campaigns. I will wish them luck. I will remain their friend. But I will not vote for, or contribute to, candidates that I believe do not have the best plan to address taxpayers’ needs. By supporting opposing candidates, you are, in reality, supporting neither.

As a friend of mine said, “I would not vote for someone that I wouldn’t be happy with running an elected position. It is called morals, sir, and I suggest you find yours.”

Vote for a man who has the strength to say what he believes in, will tell you the cold hard truths of our state of the county, and has proven his integrity to the citizens of Douglas County. Join me in making Boice your choice for county commissioner.

Jaynee Germond


Letter: Douglas County commissioner candidate’s record of community involvement garners voter’s support

October 17, 2014 — 

Back the man, not the party

Some might say I was politically born with a D in the middle of my forehead. Being from West Virginia, there is a grain of truth in that. There is a very important nonpartisan commissioner race on the ballot and I close my eyes to political parties. I support Gary Leif.

I have known Gary for more than 30 years. In his professional life, he has made me look good for advertising photos for that length of time, but he can work that magic on anyone. It is in his civic work that I spent much more time with Gary.

Both of us were active in the Douglas County Chambers of Commerce. I was secretary for a number of terms and Gary was a vice president and then president of the organization. He represented Winston in that organization. It had meetings throughout Douglas County and visited new and existing businesses. Gary has been all over the county and heard the community stories.

One of the projects was to get a study funded for transportation from the Port of Coos Bay. With a lot of letters and calls, the Oregon legislature funded a transportation study for the ports of Astoria, Newport and Coos Bay. Gary was appointed to that study.

He has spent a considerable part of his life in volunteering to make his part of the world a better place. He listens well and tries to reach consensus. I have never felt it was his way or the highway attitude and I don’t feel he entered the race with a personal agenda. I believe he wants to see good and transparent governance in that office. Please join me in voting for Gary Leif.

Shirley Cairns


Letter: Call to re-elect DeFazio to Congress

October 17, 2014 — 

DeFazio will fight for us

Although I no longer live and work in Roseburg, I’m pleased to still be able to vote for Congressman Peter DeFazio.

I don’t always agree with Peter and that’s exactly why I am voting for him. He’s an independent champion for Oregon and makes decisions based on how they will impact his district, instead of what the polls say or how special interest lobby groups dictate. He isn’t afraid to challenge his party or the administration if he thinks legislation is not good for the members of his district.

Whenever I’ve needed assistance, Peter and his staff have been there. Whether it was support for community colleges, assistance for a small business, help with a transportation issue or support for a visitor’s visa application, he has been there.

A huge supporter of education, Peter has consistently turned down pay raises taken by other members of Congress and instead donated the raises to help local community colleges fund scholarships for dislocated workers. He has also fought to make college more affordable by introducing legislation to freeze federal student loan rates.

Peter has a strong commitment to putting Oregonians and other unemployed Americans back to work. To fund and support this goal he’s taken on Wall Street, advocating for critically needed corporate tax changes; called for reform of our failed trade practices; and introduced and/or supported legislation for greater investment in much needed transportation and community infrastructure.

The next Congress has many important decisions to make and we need a representative who will fight for Oregonians. Peter DeFazio is that representative!

Pete Bober


Editorial: Support for small businesses gives Heard our vote

October 16, 2014 — 

Dallas Heard believes Douglas County’s economic future rests squarely on the vitality of its small businesses.

That’s one of the reasons we give him the nod over Kerry Atherton in the Oregon House District 2 race.

Most small business owners agree that Oregon must improve its business climate. Real jobs creation — those business owners argue — can only come from them, not from the government. Heard said he would urge his fellow lawmakers in Salem to do away with some of the myriad rules and regulations that are suffocating and discouraging business growth.

Atherton’s approach to jobs appears to include even more government. “If we want to turn this around, if we want to get this county going again, we can goose it with some money from Salem,” he told The News-Review’s editorial board.

Atherton also supports higher taxes for Oregon’s top 10 employers — including Roseburg Forest Products — and we wonder how that will encourage those employers to hire more people.

He also believes we should raise the minimum wage, first to $12.50 per hour and, in a few years, to $15. We also wonder how that will encourage jobs growth.

At 29, Heard is young and has much to learn about the world of politics, but he best represents Douglas County’s conservative values — smaller government, elimination of unnecessary regulations and government waste.

We believe his business acumen and energy will serve us well in Salem.

Atherton deserves credit for his desire to provide more funding for our schools, but his tax plan does not include any performance metrics to ensure those additional monies would improve Oregon’s test scores.

Atherton also supports the proposal to legalize marijuana, while Heard opposes the measure.

“I’m not comfortable turning the state of Oregon into a drug dealer,” Heard stated.

We believe Oregon should wait to see the results of marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington and those results are not yet in.

Both candidates deserve credit for wanting to serve Douglas County. Public service can often be a thankless task, so it’s good to see there are capable people willing to step up.

At the end of the day there can only be one winner and we hope that’s Dallas Heard.

Letter: Know the duties and functions of a Douglas County commissioner

October 16, 2014 — 

Office needs good judgment

I took the time to look up on the Internet the duties and functions of a county commissioner. After reading this, it was easy for me to see that Chris Boice is my choice for this position. He is a person who cares deeply for the folks in Douglas County. He has the integrity to look at both sides of any issue and fairly represent all views.

Chris has established a business in Roseburg that succeeds in all aspects. He is the first to donate to all Douglas County schools for the different fundraisers they have. He supports local committees that raise funds to keep our hunting and gun rights. Most importantly, he will make sure all our rights as we the people are upheld.

I have known Chris for about ten years. I have been on a committee that he chaired and would gladly work beside him again. He has the ability to listen to everyone and make good judgments. He is a strong man of faith and his family is his heart. I know he will respect the position of Douglas County Commissioner and we will all be proud we voted for Chris Boice.

Julie Quimby

Idleyld Park

Letter: GMO labeling would reveal more about common foods than many people realize

October 16, 2014 — 

Just follow the money

I am tired of our TV being inundated with lies from the corporate world. If the public only uses their heads, they’d realize that those who spend millions to defeat an issue or someone who’s running for office usually have a personal financial interest, not the interest of you and me.

I have a policy. I make sure I do not vote for the individuals and issues that have the most political signs and ads prior to an election.

An example of recent lies is the statement that “No state in the U.S. has a GMO labeling law.” This is incorrect. Vermont passed one recently and it has been signed into law by the Vermont governor. News releases say neighboring states are expected to follow soon. (Check the Internet.)

Ads show farmers whining that a GMO labeling law would hurt them and listing the sugar beet industry as one of their primary supporters. They’re afraid that if the public knew sugar beets are genetically modified to be Roundup Ready, meaning the farmers can spray their fields to get rid of weeds and the beets will not be affected, they might not want to buy their sugar. I won’t.

I make it a policy to buy only sugar that says, “Pure Cane Sugar” on the label. We grow a lot of sugar beets in Oregon. Monsanto, the chemical giant that makes billions off of this, doesn’t want us to know what we’re eating!

There are currently 64 countries around the world that require GMO labeling and some countries go so far as to forbid the importing or selling of GMO modified food.

It’s truly unfortunate that we don’t have laws requiring all political ads to be carefully vetted for the truth before they’re allowed.

Lois Eagleton


Letter: Vote for a candidate who will not be a ‘tax and spend’ Douglas County commissioner

October 16, 2014 — 

Elect Harris for Douglas County

Douglas County needs to get it right when the voters elect the next county commissioner. Getting it right, in my opinion, would be to elect Rita Harris as the newest Douglas County commissioner.

Rita has a vision for the county that truly reflects her care for and commitment to the citizens of Douglas County. She was born and raised here and knows the people and their concerns well. She understands today’s issues and there is no doubt that she will make informed decisions based on the best interest of the citizens of our county.

In listening to Rita, one can learn that she believes in a stewardship of our lands to preserve and protect them, while at the same time providing economic opportunities and jobs for people.

She has a full commitment to education, knowing that economic growth will only follow from a well-educated citizenship. Rita attended Umpqua Community College and went on to earn a master’s degree, building on the skills and knowledge she gained from her education here in Douglas County. Rita does soundly support education.

Rita has learned from her grass-roots, common folk background that one must be frugal and resourceful to make means meet basic needs. She was not born into a life of privilege. Rita will certainly protect citizens’ earnings by using public funds wisely and judiciously. She will not be a “tax and spend” commissioner. She’s had to work too hard to earn her own way. Rita knows the working families of our county are doing the same.

If there is a candidate for county commissioner that is of the people, by the people and for the people, it’s Rita Harris. Douglas County needs to get it right and elect Rita Harris as our next county commissioner.

David Neat


Letter: Choose a Sutherlin mayor who will represent the best interests of the citizens

October 16, 2014 — 

Vote Cameron for Sutherlin

As a former city of Sutherlin mayor, I have the unique position of recognizing leaders in that area. I have served on several volunteer organizations with Denny Cameron over the last few years. He is a man who puts his all into actions and thoughtfully reasons these actions with research and consultations.

Of the two men running for the mayor’s position, Denny has demonstrated his desire to see the city progress and grow through the many hours of volunteering in a wide cross section of groups and community endeavors. My knowledge of his opponent’s community service is limited to his being on the city council, not having worked with him as a volunteer on any Sutherlin events.

To me, the choice is clear: pick the person who has demonstrated over and over again his ability and desire to represent the citizens of Sutherlin best interest (such as the last citizens’ vote on the fire district). That person is Denny Cameron for mayor.

Clyde Blakely


Guest column: Open ‘broken’ primary measure should be defeated

October 15, 2014 — 

Let’s do something really stupid for Oregon. I mean besides Cover Oregon and the Columbia River Crossing Bridge. Let’s pass Measure 90.

This is the top two primary proposal from two Portland businessmen, James Kelly, a Portland Democrat and Brett Wilcox, another Portland businessman. However, most of their funding comes from Texas billionaire John Arnold to the tune of $500,000 out of the over $1 million raised in 2014. Nothing like local support.

This idea has been tried in Washington state and California, and critics say these measures have not done anything to get voter turnout increased among non-affiliated voters like the proponents claim they will. In fact, in its 2014 primary, California had a record low turnout for the primary. And Washington state has had mixed results from its efforts.

Even though Mr. Kelly is a Democrat, his party in Oregon has come out in opposition to Measure 90, calling it the “broken primary” measure. About the only party supporting this measure is the Working Families Party, which doesn’t seem to understand that due to the wording of this measure minor parties like the WFP will be eliminated.

According to the Oregon Citizens’ Initiative Review Commission, which opposed this measure 14-5, “Because M90 bars parties from nominating candidates, their (minor parties) legal status is in jeopardy. Another error could allow candidates with more than 50 percent of the primary vote to automatically win their election without a November run-off.” So much for the top two for you to choose from.

Additionally, this measure would open up the primary system to manipulation by political groups. Remember when Rush Limbaugh, in 2008, urged his Republican listeners to vote for the weaker Democratic candidate in the primaries? Is this how you want your potential candidates selected? And, since this measure differs from California and Washington by allowing voters to see the party registration and party endorsements of the candidates, you are still getting essentially the two-party primary. So instead of being able to choose a candidate from two opposing parties, you could have to choose from two candidates from the same party. How does that work toward giving you the representation you want in Salem?

There are so many problems with this measure, I don’t have the space to go through them all. But on top of all the above, look at the cost of running two elections. Not only will you have the cost of the primary but you will have the additional cost of the November general election. And if you did end up having to vote for two members of the same party, does that make sense? A similar measure to this was voted down in 2008 by a vote of 66 percent to 34 percent. We should vote this measure down by greater margins.

Tom Hawksworth, a Roseburg resident since 2000, is vice chairman of the Douglas County Republican Party. He’s retired from the railroad and transportation industry. He can be reached at thehawks2@charter.net.

Letter: Douglas County commissioner: Choose the best candidate

October 15, 2014 — 

He will provide diligent service

I am writing this letter in support of my friend, Mr. Chris Boice, who is running for county commissioner on November 4. I have known Chris for about two years, and have been a customer of his at Big O Tires, as well. Chris’s experience, diligence, and integrity as a successful businessman are characteristics that make him the best candidate for the position of county commissioner.

Chris went to work at Big O Tires in 1998 and through hard work and perseverance, became manager by 2000. He took the opportunity to purchase the store two years later. Chris now operates one of the 15 most profitable Big O branches in the country.

Although he has been successful financially, when you meet Chris Boice, you meet a generous, compassionate individual who cares about people and the community. He particularly has a heart for children and families, always willing to contribute when he sees a need.

As a servant to the Douglas County community, Chris has taken the prospect of public service seriously. His background has taught him how to run a business and he has dedicated himself to understanding the county budget. He sees the challenges that lie ahead and is anxious to lead us through them.

As a candidate for county commissioner, Chris’s diligence, knowledge, and compassion make him stand out. Chris is also a Christian man who loves God, his family and his country. Although the men against whom Chris is running are formidable opponents, I believe that Chris Boice is our best pick for county commissioner in November.

James M. Yun, MD


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