The land-use zealots are trying to steal your property rights by not accepting the small amount of justice property owners gained in Measure 37.
How many rural two-acre parcels provide $80,000 a year in farm income? That's what is required before you can build a house on a two-acre farm or forest land site according to Measure 49. Measure 49 is written to deceive the voters. Vote no on Measure 49. — A. Picollo, Central Point
Vote yes on 49 and 50.
I am sick, as I hope you are, of seeing big money interests lie, confuse and distort every election issue that matters to decent Oregonians. I am further dismayed that so many of my well-intentioned neighbors in Jackson County continually vote against their own interests after being swayed by the deceptive marketing campaigns of the money monsters.
Measure 49 boils down to one simple issue: Save our farmland and timber resources from being paved over.
Measure 50 boils down to one simple issue: Tax cigarette smokers and use that money to help poor children.
You can read all the opponents' smear language that millions of dollars will buy; but the truth as it almost always is, is quite simple. Measures 49 and 50 are good news for Oregon. — Ronald L. Doyle, Ashland
I voted with the 61 percent of Oregonians that passed Measure 37 in an effort to preserve our property rights. Now the Democratically-controlled Legislature is attempting to again impose their liberal beliefs on us.
Measure 49 will eliminate our current protection from future regulation that could negatively impact your property and the use of it. Measure 49 would also exempt government from compensating a property owner for any loss in value due to land development ordinance changes. Further, it outlawed review by the Oregon Supreme Court and the attorney general.
Measure 49 is 22 pages of convoluted legislation. Please take the time to read and understand its far-reaching impacts. The devil is in the details. — John Atkins, Grants Pass
Basic private property rights and fairness demand that any thoughtful voter vote no on both measures.
The right to own private property is meaningless if the state can modify an owner's legal property use after purchase. Voter-approved Measure 37 corrections to this injustice would be gutted with Measure 49.
Measure 49 would fully restore the property rights only to people who were limited to building just three houses in the first place. All property owners deserve to have their property rights restored, including developers.
Measure 50, which attempts to fund children's health insurance on the backs of smokers through a constitutional amendment, is equally unfair. If children's health insurance is important enough to be on the ballot, the proposed cost should be borne by all taxpayers, not just smokers. And the taxpayers would also get to pay for the inevitable legal appeals that would follow. — Kristin O'Driscoll, Jacksonville
I wholeheartedly support the Ashland School District levy because we are investing in the future economic strength of our community.
For Ashland's economy to grow and diversify we need creative, productive people to lead and work in our new businesses. These people often have children, and their kids' education is a high priority. Unless our schools are top-notch, they won't move here or keep living here — and our economy will suffer.
Ashland needs to decide what it wants to be as a community. The linkage between schools and the economy is critical. If we commit to a commonly shared direction — which I believe must be built around becoming a model sustainable city — we will attract and retain more families with school-age children and school enrollment and income will begin to rise again. — John Stromberg, Ashland
After reading Measure 49, yes versus no is easy.
Want more regulation for use of private property? Fewer rights to use your property? More forms to complete? Bigger bureaucracy? More fees to pay? More hoops to jump through? Anyone able to force judicial review of a decision? Then vote yes on 49.
Do you want fewer regulations? More rights regarding the use of your property? Fewer forms to fill out? Less government intrusion in your life? Fewer fees to pay? Fewer bureaucratic hurdles and stumbling blocks? Then vote no on 49.
The ballot title says 49 "clarifies" 37. Yeah, right! Like a 6-year-old boy will leave a puddle of water clearer than when he found it. In effect Measure 49 repeals Measure 37.
Please join me for a third time in saying, "We place a very high value on our private property rights." No on 49! — Wayne Cabler, Medford
Measure 37's intent was to return government-confiscated rights and property value to Oregonians.
The billions of Measure 37 claims that are mentioned represent value that has been unjustly taken from individuals for public benefit. These billions were not taxes spread fairly among Oregon citizens, but were extracted haphazardly from individual property owners. If any of us or a business did this, it would be theft — government has no more right to steal than we do.
Most claims to date have been filed to protect property rights and not to build. In fact, to date not even a single home has been built under Measure 37. Even if claimants wanted to build housing tracts and malls, there is not a market for extensive development. Measure 49 seeks to reinstitute injustice — please vote no on M49. — David D. Lowry, Medford
I am a student at Ashland Middle School. The levy pays for me to be in the band, do video production with Apple's professional editing software, art and P.E.
I know I benefit from the community support of these programs. I want to thank the community for helping me. I hope that they will continue to support my education and all the other kids who also benefit from the YAAL.
I want to play water polo when I get to high school. Thank you and please vote yes. — Jackson Davis, Ashland
In response to Mr. Funk's letter, 100 houses?
1973's SB 100 zoned property on Highway 238, Murphy to Water Gap Road, SR-5 (5 acres). Like my Indian ancestors, broken treaties — broken promises. The government cannot be trusted. Government regulations, environmentalists, NAFTA, NAU, selfishness and Measure 49 are depressing and destroying farmers.
Like the Birdsey's, our ranch has been in the family since the 1850s with water rights since territorial time. I would like to give land to my children and sell five acres or more to an organic farmer. Would you like to live and raise your family in the country? With Measure 37 it could happen.
The Ten Commandments are not God's suggestion. Read Exodus 20:17. Christians read the Bible! Freedom works — Measure 49 doesn't. — Lyle Woodcock, Grants Pass
As if we don't have enough lawsuits flying around already, Measure 49 opens up a whole new avenue for even more frivolous litigation.
Measure 49 deals with land-use rights — to be more accurate, it is a measure that takes away land-use rights. Measure 49 also allows anyone in the entire country to file a lawsuit against any landowner who files a claim under measure 49. You will have to file a claim under Measure 49 if you have property you want to use.
So essentially, you will be wide open to any lawsuit-happy individual in the entire nation under this measure for wanting to simply use your own property.
This is ridiculous, and this is enough. — Bonnie Bowling, Medford
The school district is asking us to lower our taxes while bringing in money that helps support academic success? Where's the downside? I'm voting yes on Measure 15-80, the Ashland Youth Activities and Academics Levy. — Mary Ellen Cole, Ashland