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home : letters : letters July 25, 2017

5/2/2017 1:48:00 PM
Letters to the Editor 05//03/2017

Editor's note: City Councilor Richard Esterman requested a retraction of a story that ran on March 29. The Nugget stands by the story with a correction (see page 5). The following is a statement provided by Councilor Esterman:

To the Editor:

At a March City Council meeting, City Councilor Richard Esterman approached the Council as a business owner and private citizen, rather than as a councilor, to address an issue regarding public events.

Specifically, Councilor Esterman requested a fee waiver for the Sisters Wild West Show due to the nature of the event which historically has translated into a large value for the City due to increased traffic and tourism. The Wild West Show is hosted by Councilor Esterman's business, Central Oregon Shows, and is the only one of its kind in Sisters. The event features nine performances which are free to the public and popular with tourists. The Wild West Show generally does not make a profit considering the high cost of overhead and free admission to the


Central Oregon Shows has always applied for event permits as a for-profit enterprise, although a profit is rarely made. This is the first year Councilor Esterman applied using a charity's non-profit status because the funds generated during the event benefit that particular charity. The application was rejected, but Councilor Esterman simply reapplied and paid all fees due for a profit event.

At the outset, Councilor Esterman, by his own volition, recognized his conflict of interest and voluntarily recused himself from discussion and voting on the matter. However, Mr. Esterman's role as a City Councilor does not prohibit him from participating as a citizen or asking the Council to waive fees or sponsor events that are beneficial to the community.

Richard Esterman


To the Editor:

Please do not remove the western meadowlark as Oregon's official state bird.

State Senator Frank Girod, predictably from a west-side district (Stayton), introduced Senate Concurrent Resolution 18 to replace the meadowlark with the osprey. The meadowlark, while found throughout Oregon, is primarily identified with well over half the state in the grasslands and pastures east of the Cascades. Once again, a west-side legislator has devised yet another ham-fisted grab giving short shrift to a bird that, for many, defines a way of life on the east side.

Anyone who has ever woken up on a sunshiny morning in the Baker Valley or along the base of the majestic Steens can never forget the time nor the place of hearing, according the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, its "buoyant, flutelike melody ringing out across a field."

After 90 years of Oregon history, for Senator Girod, it's all about the momentary whim of a "beauty pageant" maneuver to replace a bird special to Oregonians and increasingly rare with a common species.

Senator Girod claims the choice of our state bird is "unoriginal." This is false for, had he bothered to review history, the reality is exactly the opposite. Oregon and Wyoming were actually the first to designate the meadowlark as their respective state bird in 1927. Then, four other states, Nebraska, Montana, Kansas, and North Dakota, followed our pioneering designation by establishing the meadowlark as their state bird between 1929 and 1947 following the adage that "imitation is the sincerest form of flattery."

Keith K. Daellenbach


To the Editor:

There are many 70-to-90-year-old and older people in the Sisters area who must feel unsure of how they will be served when they need assisted-living care. The promises that have for years been made for a continuous residential-assisted living setting have not materialized. At best it may be years before it does. Many retired people might have moved here, as my husband and I did, to ensure a secure future as we age.

In our case we foresee a time when neither of us will be driving. Without an assisted-living setting in Sisters, if one of us needs care, the only option presently is for that one to receive it in Bend or Redmond. The other would be here with no good way to even visit regularly.

However, it is possible to meet needs in the homes of both old and young, singles and couples as they face the complications of injury, health or aging. It requires setting up a services coordinating agency. Perhaps, requiring only one office, it could be part of the project to be near the high school at McKinney Butte Road.

If there was such an agency that would arrange the meeting of the requirements of insurance, long-term, Medicare and Medicaid, needs could be met with professional help with in-home healthcare. The service of such an agency would be to coordinate with Sisters BMC and St. Charles clinics, dentists, nurses, foster care, Hospice. The list goes on: Elder law, senior counseling services, optical and auditory services, exercise centers, physical therapy professionals, nursing, housekeeping and food services, local transportation services, a grocery store that sells affordable food and delivery services, even yard care. Much of these are already here like Sisters Athletic Club and the Park and Recreation District functioning well for everyone. All of these services are good opportunities for employment for younger people. All of them continue the kind of caring Sisters community that people find so wonderful.

Care can be given without the expense of the residential, and continuous-care units. Sisters soon will have more affordable small apartments and homes available. The wonderful group of creative, giving older people in the community would be glad for complete, competent services so that they can continue to live well with care in their own homes and continue to be happily functioning people in our community.

Joann Power


To the Editor:

Next Saturday at Sisters Library, 2 p.m., there will be a viewing of "Traces of the Trade," a documentary of a modern family retracing the many steps of slaves bound for the U.S.

The family was among the biggest slave-trading businesses in America. Tom DeWolf, descendant of this family, will share the positive results from this experience through an organization he founded for healing dialogue between African-Americans and white Americans.

Please join us for this fascinating tale.

Bonnie Malone

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