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The New Era Paper
Sweet Home, Oregon
February 22, 2012     The New Era Paper
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February 22, 2012

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1  ra - February 22, 2012 COMMUNITV OPINION Page 5 Lr__.TTE00S TO Tllr_. 00ITOI00 ! No adult store in downtown Editor: I recently learned that an adult store is opening downtown on Main Street, and my reaction was, "Are you kidding me?" It seems like this town man- ages to take two steps back for every step forward. Whether we like it or not, the external image of this community is defined by Main Street. Do we really want a porn shop there? I think not. I realize there is a market for smut, and I would not deny anyone access to a product, no matter how distasteful, that is legal. Neverthe- less. the heart of the downtown is not the appropriate place for it. I am certain this "business" will eventually fail. I just hope it is sooner than later. Kenneth R. England Sweet Home 'Shock' over board decision Editor: I'm writing in regards to the passing of the proposal of a four- day school week by the Sweet Home School Board. I am in shock over the total disregard this vote has shown for the classified employees and their families. Moving to a four-day week will mean that most classified employees will lose a day of work per week. The teachers will not be affected financially by this, as their hours per day will be increased. Voting this in will be a cut that most families will be unable to tol- erate financially. If will not only affect those who were cut. but will cause a trickle-down effect that will hurt the grocery stores, gas stations, food establishments and other small businesses in Sweet Home. There is already a lack of things for young people to do in our town and having an extra day off per week won't help this or the families that have to pay an extra day per week in child care costs. Not everyone wants to send their children to the Boys and Girls Club for an entire day each week. I understand that teachers are important: this goes without say- ing. But our classified employees are not less important, and this is the message that was sent out. loud and clear The ethical thing would have been for everyone to take an across- the-board cut and share equally in the financial burden instead of plac- ing all of it on those whose incomes are the least. It is a slap in the face for all the hardworking, dedicated employees like custodians, teach- er's aides, food and maintenance workers and many others, without whose service the school would be unable to run properly. A great disservice was done by the School Board, and others in- volved, to the employees, families and town of Sweet Home with the passing of this vote for a four-day school week. This speaks volumes about the members of the board who would vote something in that negatively affects the lives of so many people. There were other options. but none were considered in the rush to hurry and push this thing through. There were a few on the board with the integrity to stand up for what was right and vote "no." and I thank them for that. It's sad to say there are not many willing to stand up for what's right in this day and age. and our families and town will reap the consequences of their disregard. Karen Baldinger Sweet Home Board decision slap in the face Editor: District 55 School Board's de- cision to approve a four-day school week beginning next year is a slap in the face to our community. I applaud Chanz Keeney, Da- vid VanDerLip, Kevin Burger, and Billie Weber for their opposition to this proposal. Shame on Mike E. Adams. Dale Keene. Mike Reynolds. Jason Redick. Jenny Daniels and Supt. Don Shrader. Supt. Don Shrader. who spear- headed this campaign, ran a one- sided side show and anyone and everyone could read the "writing on the wall" that this was already decided, no matter what our com- munity wanted or needed. To target the classified em- ployees, who will be the only school employees to lose hours. possibly insurance benefits, is a crime in itself. Some employees will lose up to eight hours a week and 40 hours a month, which is a substantial amount of money. Quite a financial blow. Rent payment, utilities cost. car payment, etc. It's almost like a caste system has been activated in the school district employment environment. The school district administration. the top rung of the ladder, followed by the certified staff, who have huge shoes to fill by the amount of paper work, class sizes, behavior factors, etc. On the lowest rung: the classi- fied - the lowest paid, the first to be cut, the ones who have the hands- on, daily encounters with our children, the ones who transport, feed, assist, maintain the buildings, grounds, supervise playgrounds, etc. Supt. Shrader is so high on his own horse that he doesn't see or care what our classified staff con- tribute to our students, teachers. schools, and community. Maybe a cut in the pay or ben- efits is needed to the "'commander in cheek" of our Fool Board, so he can share the pain alongside our dedicated classified staff. This letter is written from the heart of a Sweet Home classi- fied employee-retired, who does and did make a difference in our schools. Michael E. O'Malley Sweet Home 1,000 meals last month by Manna Many Sweet Home residents enjoy their evening meal in dining room of the Methodist Church. 845 Sixth Avenue. The free community meal is known by the biblical name "Man- na" and has been feeding the hungry of Sweet Home for more than a de- cade. The "Manna" meal is served Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 5 to 6 p.m. Diners are not required to dem- onstrate a specified level of need. Any person is welcome at "Man- ha." The meal program is run en- tirely by volunteers. More than 50 volunteers donate 400-500 hours each month by receiving deliver- ies, preparing food. serving food. and cleaning up. Over 1.000 meals were served last month to more than 180 individuals. "Manna" is a program of Sweet Home Emergency Ministries {SHEM}. Sweet Home United Methodist Church's mission is to feed the "physical. social and spiri- tual hungers of all people." Method- ist volunteers coordinate and train crews from various Sweet Home churches. This past week the kitchen crew included Methodists. Luther- ans. Catholics, Mormons. Corner- stone worshippers and others who have no church affiliation. "Manna" volunteers and din- ers are quick to point out that the meal is not a "soup kitchen" in the traditional sense. Rather, Manna is a meal for those in the community who may have any of the hungers mentioned in the mission statement above. Conversation around the table is a significant source of per- sonal support and friendship. The free meal is made possible by the assistance of Linn-Benton Food Share, an affiliate of the Or- egon Food Bank. Linn-Benton Food Share makes bi-weekly deliveries from their vari- ous food sources. These include the "Fresh Alliance" program with pro- duce from Linn-Benton area gro- cers, restaurants and prepared foods from OSU food service. Our local Safeway donates excess baked goods. Thriftway grocery donates 1% of the amount of cash register receipts collected by "Manna" diners. Sweet Home School District has been donating excess food since it learned that it could legally donate to "Manna". Local gleaners groups have also donated excess food. In addition. some Sweet Home area farmers who have provided food for "Man- na." including Fraga Farms with their prized goat cheese. Sweet Home United Methodist invested over $40,000 to upgrade the kitchen to meet restaurant stan- dards. Meyer Memorial Trust as- sisted with a grant to upgrade stoves and ovens. Sweet Home Commu- nity Foundation provided grants for table and chairs. Individuals have donated generously. What can you do to support this program? An abundance of food comes from the various sourc- es. What is a challenge for the host church is the increased cost of heat, water and power as the program has grown. Food storage demands five freezers and three refrigerators. Feeding 900-1100 meals a month also means a substantial outlay in paper goods, rubber gloves, and cleaning supplies. Donations can be made to Sweet Home Emergency Ministries with a notation for "Manna". Do- nations can also be made to Sweet Home United Methodist Church with a notation for "Manna". You are invited come enjoy dinner and be a part of the "Manna" commu- nity. Bob Hartsock Cascadia II Editorial From page 4 ties involving kids who suddenly are really interested? In a sense, we're taking about an approach similar to the Citi- zen Conservation Corps, which was a government program that put people to work during the Great Depression. Yes. it was. as government programs tend to be. inefficient and it helped lay the groundwork for some of the Big Government excesses that we complain about in this column on occasion. But it also taught skills, it built morale and. most of all. it kept young men busy. Each year local CCC "alumni." most now in their 80s or 90s. gather at Long- bow Group Campground. one of the many facilities they built With their own hands, and remember what they accomplished. They're still proud of it. 70 years later. Keeping kids busy is going to be important. Now is where the rubber starts to meet the road. Not having school on Friday could be fatal, or it could be fabu- lous. We think Sweet Home is ca- pable of the latter. We've got six months to figure this out. m m m m n m m mm mm mm mm mmm mm m mm mm mm mm lib m m m m m m mm m m mm m m m m In m mm m m m m mm mm Contact Your Local Government I | _ City of Sweet Home Don_Schrader@Sweethome.k12.or.us I [] Craig Martin, City Manager, (541) 367-8969 School District No. 55Board of Directors | cmartin@ci.sweet-home.or.us 1 Jason Redick, Chairman, (541) 401-8601 City Council • Dale Keene, Vice Chair, (541) 409-1034 I • Craig Fentiman, Mayor, (541.) 367-6826 • Michael E. Adams, Foster, (541) 367-1003 I e-maih cfentiman@ci.sweet-home.or.us • Kevin Burger, Cascadia, (541) 367-3773 Federal Government • Sen. Ron Wyden (D) (202) 224-5244 e-mail: http://wyden.senate.govlcontactl • Sen. Jeff Merkle'y (D) (202) 224-3753 e-mail: http :l/merkley.senate.govlcontactlcontactlcfm • Rep. Peter A. DeFazio (D) (800) 944-9603 I • Jim Gourley, President Pro Tern, (541) 367 5517 • Jenny Daniels, Libel, (541} 367-4080 e-mail: http://defazio.house.gov/emailme.shtml I " • Chanz Keeney, Holley, (541) 367-7999 State Govemment I I • Marybeth Angulo, Councilor (541) 367-7798 1 Mike Reynolds, Sweet Home, (541) 367-5601 I • Michael Hall, Councilor, (541) 570-2044 • Sen. Fred Girod (R, Dist. 9) (503) 986-1709 I • Greg Mahler, Councilor, (541) 401-0110 • David VanDerlip, Crawfordsville; (541) 367-3856 e-maih sen.fredgirod@state.or.us I • Billie Weber, Member at Large (541) 367-27 • Sen Wi I am Mordsette (D, Dist. 6) I _ • S McKee Jr., Councilor (541) 405-6191 I • Ron Rodgers, Councilor, (541) 401-2590 (503) 986-1706 e-mail: sen.bil!mordsette@state.or.us I I II Rep. Sherrie Sprenr (R, D. 17) I School District No. 55 I John K. Undsey jliney@co;linn.or.us I • Don Schrader, Superintendent, (1) 367-7126 II Will Tucker wtucker@.linn.or.us e-maU: rep.philbamhart@state.or.us  !