Letters to the Editor for March 1, 2013

By Baker City Herald readers March 01, 2013 08:55 am

Thanks to volunteers who work in Special Olympics

I would like to give a big shout out to all the folks that work with the special people from the Special Olympics in the winter sports program.

That includes my daughter, Stephanie Tweit, and her husband, Bryan. Bryan took this task on about 20 years ago and Stephanie joined the program about nine years ago. They spend tireless hours teaching on the Anthony Lakes slopes every Saturday for a couple of months and then join them and lead the skiers in the Special Olympics program called SOOR — Special Olympics Oregon — at Mount Bachelor in Bend every year.

One of their students, Jamie McClaughry, recently competed in South Korea and returned with two gold medals in cross-country and finished sixth overall, and is riding a high from his accomplishments.

Stephanie has since set up a table for him downtown and invited folks to participate in an autograph signing. Can’t you just feel his excitement?

This is all accomplished with donated money from businesses and individuals from all over Oregon and volunteer instructors like Bryan and Stephanie.

Hats off to the volunteers. Nice job.

Mel Cross

Baker City

Budget cuts will be costly to many Oregonians

The impact of sequestration on Oregon this year along will result in a loss of over $10 million in funding for our primary and secondary schools; loss of funds for the education of children with disabilities; less aid for work-study jobs which help students to finance the costs of college; loss of funding for protections of clean air and water; furloughs for Department of Defense employees and less funding for Oregon Army base operations; loss of Justice Assistance grants; loss of funding for job search assistance; lost access to child care assistance; reduced funding for child vaccines; loss of funds to help prevent and treat substance abuse and fewer HIV tests; loss of funds to provide services to victims of domestic violence; and, a loss of funds for providing meals to seniors.

And then there will be the years to come. It gets worse.

What are our representatives arguing about? It’s simple. The administration wants spending cuts (other than from Medicare and Social Security) and wants to increase revenue by closing tax loopholes that favor corporate America. That position is supported by a majority of Americans.

Rep. Greg Walden and his party want spending cuts only, including to Medicare and Social Security.

What do we want? Is Rep. Walden representing you and Oregon by doing what is best for our state, its residents, or is this all about politics?

Carolyn Hill

Bend