Voters approve Measures 19 and 20

Sept. 17 election results

Hood River County voters joined the rest of Oregon in giving solid approval to two tax measures on Tuesday's mail-in special election ballot.

In unofficial results provided by the county elections office Wednesday, voters passed both Measure 19 (education stability fund) and Measure 20 (cigarette tax increase.)

On Measure 19, the vote was 2,669 to 1,894, or 57.6 to 40.8 percent. (The remaining 1.6 percent of ballots were "undervotes," meaning voters did not cast a vote on Measure 19.) Statewide, 62 percent of voters approved the measure.

Measure 19 would transfer $150 million from the state education endowment fund to a school stability fund, to defray cuts to state schools.

On Measure 20, the vote was 3,158 to 1,465, or 68.2 percent to 31.6 percent. (Undervotes on Measure 20 accounted for the remaining 1.2 percent.) Measure 20 increases the cost of a pack of cigarettes by 60 cents, from 68 cents to $1.28, and is expected to raise $70 million in the next biennium. Statewide, the measure received a 68 percent yes vote.

A total of 4,635 Hood River County voters cast ballots, for a 44.1 turnout. This is well above the unofficial statewide response of 33 percent of ballots returned.

In a related development, the Legislature on Tuesday agreed to send voters an income tax increase measure in a special election Jan. 28, 2003. (Wednesday's Hood River News editorial, page A4, incorrectly stated the vote would be in 2002.)

The measure would raise $315 million this budget year by increasing the personal income tax rate from 9 percent to 9.5 percent, and the corporate tax rate from 6.6 to 6.93 percent.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge



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