Self-appointed moral policemen William Mansfield and Joel Marks spoke at a recent City Council hearing in opposition to a proposed Medford casino. Their fear-mongering, typical of moralizers, continued in their May 19 joint guest opinion, rife with dire speculations.

The proposed Class II casino, according to the May 12 Mail Tribune editorial, would likely benefit the Coquille Tribe more than the local economy. The editorial also stated, however, that "a full-blown Nevada-style casino (class III) ... with a luxury resort hotel, fine dining and entertainment ... might add to the valley's already thriving tourism industry." But imagine the hysterical reaction had the Coquilles proposed a Class III casino.

It is reasonably certain a Class III casino will never exist here, despite its economic benefits. So those of us who want the convenience of traveling to a local casino rather than to Canyonville would settle for a Class II operation.

Messrs. Mansfield and Marks can rest assured, a casino in Medford would not cause the "cultural degradation" they envision. Their overzealous efforts to save us from depravity are misplaced. Most of us ably police ourselves. — Marie Arvette, Medford

As the Legislature recently attempted to increase income taxes (thankfully, the scheme failed), I thought to myself, "Here we go again."

Does the divisive battle over income tax increases through Measures 66 and 67 come to mind? Not only have the wounds from that fight not healed, the state budget isn't in any better basic structural shape now than before. We still have the most volatile income tax-based structure in the country.

A key component of this attempt to raise income taxes was to scale back, or even eliminate, the home mortgage interest deduction. So they wanted to increase income taxes (again) and target that onto peoples' homes? So let's summarize their behavior: raising income taxes, making homeownership even less financially attainable, aggravating Oregon's boom-to-bust budget cycles, and singing the class warfare tune by pitting one group of Oregonians against another.

Let's hope they get their act together before they go home. — Colin Mullane, Talent

Look out citizens, the Jackson County commissioners want to tax you some more. They have increased many fees, taken out an $8 million loan, and it's still not enough.

Of course, the administration and commissioners haven't cut their salaries, and never mind that they continue to purchase real estate and have multimillion-dollar building projects, and forget the fact that in the past-four years the budget has increased over 60 percent and the rainy day reserves have nearly collapsed. More money is needed by your county to make ends meet. The commissioners, counsel and administrator are collaborating to present a ballot measure for your vote to create a fee for every home, apartment and business address in Jackson County, to be payable every month. They estimate this new fee will generate over $6 million/year and will be subject to CPI increases.

As we taught our children, "Just say no!" — Colleen Roberts, Prospect

The Veterans Affairs Department brings not only assistance to veterans, it also brings employment and income to Jackson County.

There are about 16,000 veteran outpatients who receive medical treatment and support from the Southern Oregon Rehabilitation Center and Clinics in White City.

There are some 450 inpatients housed and treated for recovery for a better life. The inpatients receive housing, training, nourishment and treatment only. Their personal needs such as clothing items, personal hygiene and comfort items are supplied through veterans organizations and auxiliaries. Donations can be made via the SORCC Resources Development Department at 541-826-2111, ext. 3796.

The 500 staff members and employees bring considerable income into the county. The facility has undergone vast improvements and this has added employment in our county. — Herbert Robb, legislative chairman, Chapter 8 Jackson County Disabled American Veterans

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