Voters' guide goes online

The local chapter of the League of Women Voters will break with its long-standing tradition of providing printed voters' guides and instead for the Nov. 6 election is offering an online alternative.

Judith Benjamin, co-president of the LWV Ashland chapter, said the move is designed to be more efficient and cost-effective given the lack of local funding to print the statewide organization's perennial election flyer.

"It's really a question of cost," she said. "Obviously, sending something electronically doesn't cost what printing does."

The online guide is available at .

The four-page e-guide outlines the pros and cons of Measure 49, which would retool some of Oregon's land-use laws, and Measure 50, a proposal to raise the state's tobacco tax to provide health insurance to middle-income children.

Benjamin said Ashlanders for years have looked to the League's guide for a simple, straightforward look at ballot issues. In the state's official voters' pamphlet, she said, the analysis on Measure 49 alone is a whopping 56 pages.

"I, as a voter, start reading this and my eyes start blurring," Benjamin said, noting that the LWV guide has a two-page analysis on the ballot measure that both sides of the issue have reviewed for fairness.

In years past, the local chapter provided the Tidings with copies of their voters' guide for insert. "This year, we are asking our members if they belong to other groups that they print it out and distribute it," Benjamin said. "It may be that after this year when they're seeing that they are not getting printed copies, we might be able to get more local financing."

covers politics for the Ashland Daily Tidings. Reach him at

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