Last Saturday, I attended Sen.Wyden’s town hall meeting at COCC in Bend. Many of the questions covered our ongoing water issues in Central Oregon. I was glad to hear the River Democracy Act mentioned several times, by community members and Sen. Wyden himself, as a way to protect vital watersheds, clean drinking water supplies, public lands recreation and wildlife habitat.
The River Democracy Act is a landmark bill that protects Wild and Scenic Rivers across the state. Right here in Central Oregon, waterways such as Tumalo Creek, Fall River, Paulina Creek, and the headwaters of the Deschutes would be protected. These are treasured places where Oregon families camp, hike, fish, cross-country ski, paddle and enjoy our public lands.
The streams in the River Democracy Act are some of the places where I learned to fly fish as a child growing up in Bend.
I learned to ride a bike on the trails adjacent to Tumalo Creek, and spent summer afternoons in my parent’s canoe watching osprey soar above the crystal-clear waters in the headwaters of the Deschutes. As Central Oregon continues to grow, it is critical that we protect these special places, which are the lifeblood of our communities in so many ways, for future generations.
I want to thank Sens. Wyden and Merkley for their leadership in protecting Oregon’s rivers, and I hope to soon see the River Democracy Act passed in Congress.
— Sami Godlove is with the Bend office of Oregon Wild.
Restart discussion on managed camp
I was dismayed by the misinformation and vitriol over a possible managed “camp” at Third Street South adjacent to Les Schwab.
I live not far from that location. I support a managed camp at that location. I shop at the stores in south Bend alongThird Street. Les Schwab south is where I get my tires, my flats fixed, buy my batteries, etc.
I have spoken with many who live in our area. There’s a quiet group of folks, who don’t want to get wrapped up in the vitriol, who also support a safe, secure managed camp at the Third Street site.
Some of my neighbors in our area here in south Bend tell me initially they start out opposed to a managed camp being there. When the misinformation they’ve been given is corrected and they learn what a well-managed camp really is — what the restrictions and controls will be — they uniformly say they are no longer opposed.
There are people living on Hunnell who are not druggies, thiefs or troublemakers and are willing to follow rules. They want to get off Hunnell to get away from the druggies, thiefs and troublemakers. But they have no place to go. They say a well-managed, well-kept location at the Third Street site is what they need.
Let’s have a cooling-off period. Then let’s restart the dialog to let everyone know what a managed camp is really all about and how safe and secure it will be.
— Charles Hemingway, Bend
Small accessible libraries, not a big central library
Over the past two years, I have read many letters and guest columns concerning our library system. I have spoken to people in the public and employees at the libraries. Not one person has expressed a desire to have a new and large central library. Everyone I have spoken to loves the idea of many small accessible libraries throughout the county and our neighborhoods of Bend. If a new central library is built, serious consideration should be given to low cost so that other libraries, and perhaps more, will remain open. The Costco building as the new library is a great idea.
Our library board members can be commended for thinking big in terms of what a library can provide. However, if we take away the human scale of accessibility, then a grand and new facility will sit cold and empty.
— Jim Reichle, Bend
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The city is mulling a transportation utility fee, a seasonal fuel tax and/or a targeted sales tax on food and beverage sales to cover transportaiton costs, repairs. You can respond directly to the city at firstname.lastname@example.org. See our editorial at https://bendbulletin.us/3n5cACr
Thank you, Charles Hemingway, for your thoughtful letter, and to the Bulletin for its coverage of this issue (specifically, for putting a human face on homelessness; affter all, there but for the grace of entropy go all of us).
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