Letters and comments for May 4, 2012

By Observer Upload May 04, 2012 02:48 pm
Letters and comments for May 4, 2012


Family fun in Union 


To the Editor:

What a fun weekend it was in Union.

The Blue Mountain Old Time Fiddlers held their annual meeting April 13 and had a show on April 14. 

The Miller school served us well for accommodations and equipment. 

Sharing the property with the Little League festivities and all of their excitement added to our enjoyment.

Friday brought 23 musical jammers and 51 other participants. For the Saturday show, we had 122 in the audience and 36 musical performers.

Event chair Nancy Bruce and her husband, Pat, did an excellent job with organization and Denny and Colleen Langford conducted the business end with a pleasant professionalism.

Many dancers added pleasure to both evenings, and the local Scout Troop goodies sale added a nice touch.

For the Raymond family, the only downside to the motorhome trip was filling the gas tank on our return to Idaho. But it was worth it.

Jack and Mary Jane Raymond

Caldwell, Idaho 





Shelter well run 


To the Editor:

Apparently there are people who have major antipathy toward the Humane Association and how they run the shelter. We do not share those negative feelings at all.

In response to a recent letter criticizing the Blue Mountain Humane Association, we would instead like to share our own family’s experiences. 

After losing our beloved dog last November to cancer, we decided to look at rescue dogs.

We were welcomed warmly at the shelter and encouraged to look at all the animals.

After several visits and careful consideration we chose Victor, a 3-year-old German short-hair.

Our questions were answered openly. We were impressed with the professionalism and friendliness of the volunteer staff. They shared what background they knew of him and made sure he had his shots, and was neutered before coming to us. And, he has brought us much joy.

We understand the reasons for the change in policy regarding the public having free access to all the dogs.

Not only do the dogs become stressed and agitated with a lot of visitors, but there is also the question of safety around small children, liability and the spread of disease to the animals themselves. 

But the idea that people are expected to choose a pet from a picture is not the case.

Potential adopters are certainly able to see a specific dog on request, either in the yard or lobby and not expected to make their choice without plenty of interaction.

If anyone has concerns or questions, we would encourage them to visit the shelter and see for themselves.

Pamela and Fred Moore

La Grande 




Help Union library 


To the Editor:

I am a citizen of Union though at the moment my husband and I don’t own property here. We do rent here in Union and both work in town. Our concern is the levy for the funding of our library. The library is an important asset to the community.

I am a caregiver for a disabled couple. The husband can’t go to the library, but his wife can. She always looks forward to her libary day. She is in the early stages of dementia and her doctor wants her to read rather than watching TV, which she does except for a few of her favorite shows. The librarian knows what kind of books she enjoys reading and will have any new books waiting for her. Her husband also enjoys books from the library and DVDs. 

The library encourages the kids to read during the summer by having prizes for the number of books read. They also have computers, which can help job seekers, plus students who might not have home computers. Also they have books on tape, large-print books and DVDs and VHS movies.

The librarian always meets you with a smile and will help you find what you are looking for. She will even bring books to your home if you cannot get out. Where else can you get this kind of service?

The seniors and others in Union depend on the library. Don’t let this friendly meeting place have to cut back on hours or have to shut the doors for good. Please vote for our little library to keep its doors open.

Elizabeth Allen




Understands forest 


To the Editor:

This past week, the supervisor of the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest withdrew the travel management plan. One of the reasons for the plan withdrawal was “a good bit of confusion.”

My question is, who is confused? As the leader of a group of citizens that think that forest access should be an unrestricted right, I sense that those 6,000-plus that signed petitions to leave the access to the Wallowa-Whitman forest open are far from confused. They can easily foresee the devastating long-term effects that
forest road closures would have on their hunting, ATVing, camping, berry picking, fishing, wood-cutting and a whole host of other activities that take place in the national forest.

We are not particularly concerned about the math on the road closures --- we don’t want any roads closed --- and if that isn’t going to happen, at least we want reasonability on the roads that absolutely have to be closed.

I somehow get the idea that we are being treated like the consoled child --- open wide, you just don’t quite understand how these forest matters work.

Well, having been around the forest my entire life, being a seasoned senior citizen and having property enclosed 100 percent by the WWNF, you know what? I think I understand the whole situation pretty well.

A group of concerned citizens, myself included, worked long and hard to develop an equitable forest travel plan. Was it even considered? Absolutely not! So, is there a hidden agenda here? Do we spend our time, energy and resources submitting input, only to have that information sent to the USFS never to be seen or heard of again? We are optimistic that the withdrawal of the TMP is the right thing.

We are also alert, organized and prepared to take whatever action we deem necessary to preserve our right to use public forest land.

Allan Chase

president, Forest Access for All




Vote for Gilbert 


To the Editor:

It is with great pleasure that I write this letter of endorsement for Irene Gilbert for Union County commissioner. It is exciting to have such an accomplished and qualified candidate.

Ms. Gilbert believes strongly in transparency and honest communication with Union County residents, listening to all sides of the issues.

Gilbert wants to hold county commissioner meetings in the evening so that the general public can attend and be more informed about how the business of the county is conducted.

Gilbert is opposed to undisclosed meetings held behind closed doors. What a wonderful concept.

Recently, when the National Forest travel management plan “hit the fan,” Irene rolled up her sleeves and held four full-day meetings in Union, Cove, La Grande and Elgin to help explain to residents of Union County what their options were to appeal. This was done on her time and at her expense because she cared about the outcome and the concerns facing her potential constituency.

In addition, Irene wants to go over the county budget with a fine-tooth comb and weed out areas that are not economically sound, ensuring the citizens of Union County they are
getting the most bang for the buck.

Looking at lrene’s impressive career experience at the state level shows she has the know-how to tackle tough issues and has the perseverance to get the job done.

Gilbert has the work experience needed to “analyze how laws and rules impact the real world” and is not afraid to stand up to bureaucrats’
vested interests.

Irene realizes the importance of open dialogue with the residents and taxpayers of Union County and how important it is to take all concerns into consideration, not just the ones that support a particular agenda. With Gilbert as county commissioner, we can be assured that our voices will be heard.

I encourage you to vote for Irene Gilbert: a person of integrity, honesty and ethical sensibility to do the job of Union County commissioner.

Valerie Morrow

La Grande