Let elected officials make decisions about Port property

Another Voice

By PERCY JENSEN

Special to the News

In reading the Hood River news the past few weeks, I notice the group calling itself “Citizens for Responsible Waterfront Development” has reared its head once again and are telling the City Council and the Port Commission how to develop our water front.

This time the CRWD are attempting to place the remainder of the Port property into a non-revenue producing park. Already the entire waterfront, stretching from the Hood River bridge to the western end of Port property, is over 50 percent in recreation use. Now they are saying 50 percent is not enough we want 100 percent.

While this group is advocating another park and proposing a ballot issue to do the same, I must ask of them, who is paying for the ongoing maintenance of a park that will be used for only a few months and maintained for a whole year? Also, the several thousand dollars required for a ballot issue, not to mention legal fees. Certainly not the proposing group! Are they being responsible as their name implies? In my opinion, and the opinion of many, the answer is no.

When the Port of Hood River was formed in 1933, its primary goal was to create jobs. This commission has never wavered from this goal but has changed from seeking manufacturing jobs to one of accommodating recreation interest such as boating, swimming beach, a world class windsurfing site, a park and other recreation opportunities.

These changes have been beneficial to our community through enhanced livability and community jobs have been created along the way because of these changes. While parks make a community more livable and are needed, they create only municipal-type jobs. Our waterfront development can create jobs and greatly enhance our economy and add to our tax base. Parks will not.

The CRWD would do more good by simply fading into the sunset and let “representative democracy,” in the form of our City and Port governments, do the jobs they are elected to. The CRWD is elected by no one. While our democracy has some inherent flaws, it is still the best form of government the world has ever known and our system is the envy of the entire world.

Let the system work! We certainly don’t need additional legal fees and strained feeling in a community that has had far too much of this in the past and far too few jobs created because of it.

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Percy Jensen of Hood River served on the Port Commission from 1973 to 1993 and was a business owner for 30 years and county fair manager for 20.

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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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