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September 11, 2014     Shelton Mason County Journal
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September 11, 2014

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Page A-4 - Mason County Journal - Thursday, Sept. 11,2014 I) i3 /] // LETTERS TO THE EDITOR we not be teaching Editor, the Journal In regard to St. Da- vid of Wales Episcopal Church and Sound Learning offering a 10-week Spanish class beginning Sept. 17 (Ma- son County Journal, Aug. 28), may I suggest to St. David's that they instead should be offer- ing a free or low-cost 10- week class in English? In view of the large population of Hispanic immigrants to the Ma- son County area, I feel a greater focus should be on more free or low- cost opportunities for their learning English to better assimilate them- selves into the American community. The few of us interested in learning Spanish may do so on our own. While many of us welcome the diversity of legal immigrants to our area, and encourage families to retain the culture and language of their native country, and teach their children such, it is not doing these families any good to encourage a lack of interest or necessity in learning English, the language of the country they have migrated to. Some years ago, Ma- son County was given a federal grant to form English classes to better help current and future immigrant employees learn and speak the lan- guage. To my chagrin, the county took this money and instead provided Spanish classes so that non-Hispanic employees could adapt to and speak with Hispanic employ- ees. This seems a convo- luted solution to me, because it does not help those who have migrated to our country. Katie Groves Shelton "Yb0 FAA, port cause of fair's Editor, the Journal Several weeks ago, Sharon Potts-Terhune wrote to express frustra- tion and dismay at the lack of Mason Area Fair support this year. While fairs thrive in surround- ing counties, her frustra- tion focused on "the pow- ers that be" and local public apathy in general. With those concerns in mind, I offer the follow- ing observations: Support for the fair did not die from a lack of local interest. It was killed by an outside force called the Federal Aviation Administra- tion (FAA). The Port of Shelton also helped eliminate public support by insisting that fair- grounds use would end with this year's events. The real impact on the community and Mason County youth will only be felt after the fair- grounds are demolished, probably by the end of this year. In an overall review of the issue, beginning in 1997, the port sided with the FAA in its effort to have the fairgrounds re- moved even though the area had been set aside for "other than airport use" in 1968. In 2009, the county dropped support of the fair due to financial con- siderations and an un- willingness to lock horns with the port over a property lease extension. Since then many citizens and organizations have devoted extraordinary effort and private trea- sure in attempts to save the fair. As a former port commissioner and local business-development practitioner for the past three decades, I can tell you that the FAA has no authority to dictate re- moval of the fairgrounds from port property. However, the agency does have grant money, and that is often more powerful than legal au- thority. While the FAA exerts pressure through its purse strings, the decision to remove or retain the fairgrounds still rests solely with the Port of Shelton's elected commission. Ironically, while the port moves to comply with FAA wishes on the fairgrounds in order to secure future grant funds, it also risks a direct confrontation by allowing marijuana business to operate on airport property. That activity violates the terms of the very FAA grants that the port is trying to secure. While this entire situation strains for credibility, the community is about to lose its fairgrounds. Will the fairgrounds be replaced somewhere else? Someday, maybe. I hope this short letter serves to better inform the community on the fairgrounds issue. For a much more in-depth discussion, go to www.scribd.com/ doc/111190350/ Fair-Grounds- Relocation-Question. Jay Hupp Shelton will bring change to PUD 3 Editor, the Journal I am writing to en- dorse John Komen for Mason County PUD 3 commissioner. John Ko- men has and will contin- ue to be a consistent ad- vocate for the ratepayers of PUD 3. The following is an outline of some of the egregious decisions and expenditures im- posed upon the ratepay- ers by the existing board: 1. It installed a water line, intended for the support of an incinerator plant whose environmen- tal impact would've been devastating, costing the ratepayers $1.7 million. The commissioners ul- timately gave the water line to the city of Shelton; $1.7 million was paid for by the ratepayers of P.UD 3 (no vote advisory or oth- erwise). 2. It built a $41-mil- lion facility, whose need was debatable (no vote advisory or otherwise). 3. The present debt of PUD 3, more than $180 million in bonds, will not be paid offuntil 2040, almost 30 years from now (no vote advisory or otherwise). In every one of the above actions, involved citizens advocated for ratepayer input in the form of a vote or at least an advisory vote. Each and every time the com- missioners hid from this type of openness and al- most secretly proceeded with their own agenda. We need change. We need transparency. We need John Komen. He will be open with the ratepayers and make fiscally responsible de- cisions to protect the victims (ratepayers) of these past decisions. We need John Komen. Ray Jenne Grapeview Vote Farmer for PUD seat Editor, the Journal I am voting for Tom Farmer this November. I've known Tom for more than 40 years. He is the most experienced candidate on the bal- lot. He understands our rural area because he's lived here for more than 50 years. He also un- derstands the need for economic development and the delicate environ- mental issues because he's worked with them for 30 years. Tom is an honest, educated and hard- working man with six years of experience as a Mason County PUD 3 commissioner. He votes to support the residents and the small businesses in our county and keeps our PUD rates low. Ien- courage you to also vote for Tom Farmer for PUD 3 commissioner for Dis- trict 2 on Nov. 4. Jill Satran-Loudin Belfair see LETTERS, page A-5 Mason County USPS 492-800 POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Mason County Journal, P.O. Box 430, Shelton, WA 98584. Published weekly by the Mason County Journal at 227 Wo Cota St., Shelton, Washington. Mailing address: P.O. Box 430, Shelton, WA 98584 Telephone (360) 426-4412 Website: www.masoncounty.com Periodicals postage paid at Shelton, Washington. The Mason County Journal is a member of the Washington Newspaper Publishers' Association SUBSCRIPTION RATES: $37 per year for Mason County addresses, $51 per year in the state of Washington but outside Mason County and $61 per year out of state. Owned and published by Shelton-Mason County Journal, Inc. Torn Hyde, publisher Newsroom: Adam Rudnick, editor Natalie Johnson, reporter Gordon Weeks, reporter Emily Hanson, sports reporter Dawn Geluso, proofreader Advertising: Dave Pierik, Sr. Acct. Executive Kathy Brooks, ad representative Lloyd Mullen, ad representative Front office: Donna Kinnaird, bookkeeper Amanda Strand, circulation Composing room: William Adams, graphics Linda FrizzeU, graphics All editorial, advertising and legal deadlines are 5 p.m. the Monday prior to publication. To submit a letter to the editor, email letters@masoncounty.com.