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The Observer paper 12/24/14

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Home arrow Opinion arrow MY VOICE

MY VOICE: Foundation marks a milestone

This year marks the 40th anniversary of the Oregon Community Foundation. As OCF has grown and changed over four decades, so has Oregon itself. In the 1970s, Oregon’s population was well over 90 percent white; now the number is 78 percent. 

Mayor: Well deserved thanks


MY VOICE: Our educational catastrophe

Education is the system that keeps a democracy functioning, and democracy’s greatest focus must be education. 

MY VOICE: New courthouse will benefit all


MY VOICE: County needs to act on poverty

More than many other counties in Oregon, Union County has a vested interest in seeing state action to reduce poverty.

MY VOICE: Building a brighter future

If there is something that everyone in Eastern Oregon has in common, it is change. The very makeup of our communities is shifting, growing older and becoming more diverse. Many outside forces we cannot control have altered our economy, making it increasingly difficult to utilize the natural resources that surround us. 

MY VOICE: Limits needed for commissioners

“All power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely.”

With the end of election season it’s time to take a hard look at term limits for Union County commissioners and modification of the term limits in Oregon’s Constitution for governor and other statewide offices.


MY VOICE: Here’s to an alternative ‘Xmas’

Christmas started out as a Christian holiday to celebrate the birth of Jesus in human form. Today, the Christmas holiday has grown to a commercial enterprise. 

MY VOICE: Setting the record straight

As a spokesperson for Grande Ronde Hospital, Inc., I appreciate The Observer allowing me the opportunity to set the record straight on the most glaring mistakes in a story that ran on the front page Monday, Oct. 20.

MY VOICE: Continuing bond collaboration

To create the currently proposed Bond Measure 31-86, the La Grande School District appointed a 40-plus member community-based committee to review the data, strategize on solutions, initiate a long-range facility plan and recommend a first phase, which is reflected in the bond measure. 

MY VOICE A reasonable plan for drinking water

Recently, the La Grande City Council increased water rates by $6 a month, establishing the base rate at $22.04. This action was the result of a year of evaluation and much discussion and apprehension. 

MY VOICE: School bond a wise investment

I joined a community group last fall to explore the physical structure needs of our school district. We were asked to prepare a proposal to the school board for a potential bond. One of the reasons I was interested was to ensure prudent use of my tax dollars.

MY VOICE Let’s manage economic expectations

La Grande has an Urban Renewal focused economic development strategy. Like it or not, this is what we have. Because of this, there are inherent advantages and disadvantages.


MY VOICE: School district: If not now, when?

  The Willow building was built in 1924 and houses all of the district’s kindergarten students.


MY VOICE: Trout Creek project completed

How fortunate Alpine Meadow golfers are to have Trout Creek right in their own back yard. Although, as frustrated lovers of the game, they sometimes view the creek as a liability, they also realize, from an irrigation standpoint, the importance of its flow.


MY VOICE: ‘Public’ has faded from higher ed

After spending most of my career working in industry, I am fortunate to have served the past decade in public higher education. What I have seen is both uplifting and heartbreaking. While wealth or intellect all but guarantees some students the opportunity of higher education, too many others face more difficult paths.


MY VOICE: Time to reinvest in families

The issue that comes to the forefront of discussions at coffee tables, backyard barbecues, living rooms and even the office or place of work is why can’t the economy get back on its feet, and for those living in Eastern Oregon, why aren’t there more jobs or opportunities that can provide a better quality of life?


MY VOICE: The county should proceed to build

I attended Shelter From the Storm’s “family justice campus” meeting on July 31, but left with more questions than answers. 


MY VOICE: Medicare milestone should be celebrated

With all the commotion in the courts about the Affordable Care Act, it would be easy to overlook an important birthday. July 30 was the 49th anniversary of the public health insurance program that covers our nation’s seniors and people with severe disabilities. 

It’s a birthday to be celebrated by all of us.


MY VOICE: Leaving an indelible mark

When I found myself single with three small children 12 years ago, I never dreamed I’d fall in love. Not with another man, but with my clients. My elderly clients.

I got into the insurance business much like others do — not by design. My schooling was in natural resources, but as a single mom faced with raising three children, I entered the insurance industry strictly for financial reasons. What I found surprised me.


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