Letters to the Editor

Commission ignored call for pesticide ban

The Ashland Parks and Recreation Commission failed to implement a pesticide free parks program this week. It is an epic failure.

You may hear from commissioners that they are on the way to pesticide-free parks or that they intend to get there. But the fact of the matter is that the commission had a golden opportunity to create a strong policy that clearly and unequivocally instituted pesticide-free parks in Ashland. They failed to do so.

The commission received hundreds of letters from citizens asking that it approve pesticide-free parks. At two hearings held by the commission, dozens upon dozens of citizens spoke out in favor of pesticide-free parks — many citing tragic personal stories of children being harmed by the use of pesticides. More than 650 citizens have signed a petition asking that parks be pesticide-free. But, no matter.

Despite near unanimous citizen support for pesticide-free parks, the commission was not swayed. The commission did not approve a policy that would stop the use of pesticides nor did it even approve language that would phase out the use of pesticides.

Let's make it clear to the commission that the citizens of Ashland will not rest until all of our parks are pesticide free. And that time is now. If you are interested in pesticide-free parks, please contact me at dimitre@mind.net

Tom Dimitre

Rogue Group Sierra Club

Ashland

Business will be lost due to new cell tower

I write to add my voice to the growing group of Ashland citizens who cannot return to do business at the Ashland Shopping Center if AT&T's 12-panel antennas are put in place.

Here is a list of the places that I frequently visit and, sadly, will have to do without: Advanced Photo, Ashland Cinemas, Ashland Nails, BookWagon, Deja Vu, Dollar Tree, DJ's Video, Hidden Springs, Printfast, Radio Shack.

This doesn't have to be this way. There are solutions to this

problem and, to quote from Suzanne Sky's letter to the editor (Daily Tidings, May 21), there already is a "mutually beneficial location for these antennae."

Julia Tucker

Ashland

Differences in town are easy to observe

We live on the east end of town near Bellview Elementary School. On Siskiyou Boulevard, we have two very nice, well-kept and much-needed workforce housing complexes.

The town is planning to build a third such complex behind the Ashlander Apartments building, also on the east end of town. Is there any reason why no areas of the west end have been selected for such housing?

There are also plans to put in a community park behind the workforce housing. That will be nice, as we have very few parks at our end of town. The closest one is not within walking distance of the Ashlander Apartments or the Bellview School area, unlike the west side of town, which appears to have several conveniently located parks.

I love living on our side of town and have no complaints about what is happening. It is hard not to notice, however, that while there are no low-income housing complexes on the west side of town, we're about to get our third. And, finally, a park.

Kathleen Hildreth

Ashland

Call for public forums makes political sense

Thanks, Jeff Golden, for your letter to the editor on May 20. Sign me up for the forums. If we've learned anything recently, it's that we have to listen better and find common ground — or we get partisan bickering, stalemates and other obscurations that keep us from really solving the critical problems we all face. Citizens and politicians of Jackson County need to come together, be engaged. We need new ideas and the activism of renewed citizenry.

This year we have a chance to transform our county government via a progressive majority, to make the changes needed to foster better government (more attuned to and supportive of our needs) and move through the difficult transitions we are in. Hard times are here to stay unless we complete the paradigm shifts to more sustainable ways of living, working and moving around. Without this transition, we leave the children and grandchildren of Rogue Valley far less than the world we grew up in.

We need "practical, effective solutions" "… and we need them now. And I personally think we need Jeff Golden.

Karen Jeffery

Ashland

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