Do you have a point you’d like to make or an issue you feel strongly about? Submit a letter to the editor.

Clarifying some points

Re: Transportation story April 13. Two points of clarification:

The consulting firm of Barney & Worth is being hired to “test” and help refine a potential package of infrastructure upgrades and programing addressing Bend’s transportation challenges.

The recommendations are the responsibility of the City Transportation Advisory Committee. CTAC represents a cross section of public, private and civic interest groups. We are volunteers committed to a comprehensive, two-year process and are working to arrive at a balanced, respectful compromise with each decision.

The proposed transportation improvement projects and funding recommendations of CTAC and a parallel Transportation Funding Group will be shaped with the community’s input. Transportation is one of the most important discussions informing our community’s future. Please join the conversation.

Independent of my role on CTAC, the other clarification concerns the inappropriate suggestion that consultant Erin Foote Morgan’s earlier advocacy for a gas tax on the May 2016 ballot was the reason her firm, Hubbell Communications, was not selected as the marketing consultant to this project. This allegation mischaracterizes Erin, including her tireless efforts as former director of Bend 2030.

In fact, Erin and Hubbell Communications recently delivered an insightful survey of citizen opinions on growth in Bend (“It’s Not About Growth”), commissioned by the Bend Chamber of Commerce, available at its website. I encourage you to read it.

Advocacy on any issue should be received with gratitude and respect. It’s so important to speak up. It’s not always easy to do.

Ruth Williamson

Bend

Protect wolves

I would like to address The Bulletin’s recent story “Oregon’s wolf population up 10% in 2018.”

Yes, Oregon’s known wolf population increased by 13 individuals last year, but 12 of those were in Eastern Oregon. In Western Oregon, where wolves remain protected by the federal Endangered Species Act, the population increased by just one animal. Alarming, since the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently proposed removing federal ESA protections from all gray wolves across the contiguous U.S. At the same time, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife seems poised to open the door for trophy hunting and trapping.

Most Oregonians support protections for wolves and don’t want them trophy hunted or trapped. What’s more, a 2018 poll showed 70% of Oregon voters don’t believe wolves pose an economic threat to the cattle industry that necessitates killing wolves. They’re right. According to ODFW, just 30 calves were confirmed to have been injured or killed by wolves in 2018 — a mere 0.002% of Oregon’s 1,270,000 cattle and calf inventory. Data from the USDA show that most unwanted livestock losses in Oregon are due to things like disease, weather, birthing problems and theft — not predators.

America’s wolves must remain federally protected under the ESA. Otherwise, the slow progress they’ve made toward recovery will quickly come to an end. Please submit a polite comment to regulations.gov (search “84 FR 9648”) telling the Fish and Wildlife Service that you want wolves to stay protected under the ESA!

Debra Merskin

Powell Butte

Keep Bend’s feel

I strongly agree with Jeff Conrad in his April 11 letter. The Bulletin needs to do a new survey of Bend residents regarding chain stores. We moved to Bend a year and a half ago, and we love the unique, locally owned stores and restaurants here. I have spent half my life thus far in Idaho and half in California, and I plan to spend the rest in Bend. Please do not bring (more) chain stores here.

Let’s let California have them and their generic look and feel. If you want something from Pottery Barn that badly, go to Portland or order online. Let’s keep the distinctive and special feel we have here in Bend and continue to support local shop and restaurant owners.

Lisa Travis

Bend

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