June 6, 2006 Comments on timber industry As a participant in the recent Summit meeting, May 20 in Medford, to look at the realities of the BLM’s plan revisions, I was struck with the economic considerations for our area if their

Comments on timber industry

As a participant in the recent Summit meeting, May 20 in Medford, tolook at the realities of the BLM’s plan revisions, I was struck withthe economic considerations for our areaif their proposed massivelogging plans go into action.

The economy of Josephine County haschanged considerably while some of our leader, including the countcommission, still hope for the massive profits from logging receivedin the 1960’s.

Only a very small percentage of the county economy, $14 million, isrelated to timbering and wood products, while major contributors tothe economy are services, new industries, and jobs created by thepresence of retirees collecting pensions and telecommuters providinga 43 percent increase in income transfers.

The old growth forests that provided a bonanza 40 years ago have notregrown to former profitable dimensions and automation has brought adecrease in jobs affiliated with the timber industry. Our highestattractions for new residents, tourists and recreational use are ourmagnificent forested mountainsides.

A study of 410 non-metropolitan communities over the past 30 yearsshows the highest economic growth to be in areas that designatednature reserves and protected wild lands. The very lands that arecurrently resources for our economy are the ones that the BLM feelsdetermined to log via an out of date 1937 ruling that is beingmisrepresented.

Let us ask the BLM to work with us to generate income for ourcommunities by preserving precious forestlands, not by extractingtimber and leaving us impoverished financially and spiritually!

Dorothea Hover-Kramer

More ‘watch

sheet’ ire

Many citizens must have felt it improper for The Tidings to publish the photos of those persons pictured on the Ashland Police Department “watch sheet.”

Were they fugitives wanted for some crime it might have been appropriate, but to single them out in such a manner strikes us as unfair and against the American grain.

Does this presage a return to the public humiliation of undesirables by placing them in the stocks downtown?

Gerald and Ragan Cavanaugh

Ashland has ‘Bump-out fever’

So Ashland has contracted the “bump-out fever.” Somebody is stuffing fat pockets with taxpayers’ money.

While we are at it, I suggest that all the driveways that open onto our main streets should be provided with bump-outs too. Since they are now recessed relative to crossings, cars nosing out of driveways into the stream of traffic present a major hazard.

It would also seem wise to extend bump-outs by four feet or so to accommodate our many senior citizens, who tend to walk rather slowly. After all, they are the majority of residents of Ashland.

Margaret K. St. Clair

Kudos for

park coverage

Congratulations,yesterday’s paper was fascinating. page one showed volunteers, “Accomplishing in two hours what the city couldn’t in three months.”This being the replacement of the park benches.

Then on page 7 a careful reading of the Ashland bloated budget showed, “property tax rate will be held to $1.72 city, $2.09 parks, approximately $3.81 combined.”

Since they have proven themselves dysfunctional, let’s privatize parks.

Surely, competitive bidding would save us considerable tax money, especially combined with volunteerism. Thanks for your consideration.

Jan Craigie

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