After reading an article on how some people think we should channel lottery money to cash-strapped counties to pay for services — which would effectively take it away from education (which the lottery was primarily set up to support), I was appalled.

Doing some research, I found that, for example, Jackson County's basic rate is about $2.20 per $1,000 dollars of assessed value. This is money that goes directly to the county. Josephine County's rate is 75 cents per $1,000 dollars. Josephine County has repeatedly tried to increase the rate to pay for services, yet the folks repeatedly vote it down. I for one do not want any more cuts to our children's education because people choose not to pay their fair share. — Arlene Aron, Applegate

This past Saturday evening (Aug. 17) , I was looking forward to watching the Portland Timbers play host to FC Dallas in a critical Major League Soccer contest. Unfortunately, however, the local MyNetwork TV affiliate, KFBI, which was supposed to telecast the game live, instead aired a movie.

This is not the first time that KFBI-TV pulled this stunt. Last month, when the Timbers' road game against the Philadelphia Union went into a lengthy halftime (the match was suspended for 40 minutes due to severe weather issues in the Philadelphia area), the station, instead of rejoining the game when the second half started, instead aired infomercials and their regularly scheduled lineup of sitcom reruns.

Perhaps the Timbers should consider dumping KFBI and replace it with another Medford area television station. — Bob Nunes, Medford

Congressman King of Iowa has introduced changes to the federal Farm Bill. These changes will cause laws like Oregon's ban on shark fins and Maryland's ban on arsenic in poultry food to be forever unenforceable.

Crafted to protect producers that would like to fill our state with cheap, inferior food products, the King amendment will hurt Oregon's agriculture and public safety, in addition to further eroding our state's right to self-determination.

There is still time to protect Oregon's food safety and state's rights! Please write to our federal reps and ask them to ensure that this harmful amendment is not a part of the final Farm Bill. Our U.S. senators are Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, while Rep. Peter DeFazio and Rep. Greg Walden represent us in the House. — Debbie Catalina, Grants Pass

I believe many of our legislators would now admit that the well-intentioned but misguided mandate to blend corn ethanol and other biofuels into our nation's gasoline supply has been one of the biggest mistakes in the history of our nation's energy policy.

This mandate has been negatively impacting our environment, as it takes more energy to produce ethanol than what is actually derived from it. A report issued by the University of California Berkeley geoengineering professor Tad W. Patzek back in 2005 concluded that "the cumulative energy consumed in corn farming and ethanol production is six times greater than the power the ethanol provides in a car engine."

Additionally, our middle-class, part-time worker society is having a difficult time paying for the exponential increase in cost the ethanol mandate is having on our gasoline and food — removing the mandate would provide them immediate relief in their day-to-day living.

I was disappointed with President Bush when these mandates were enacted in 2007; it is now time for Congress to muster the courage to eliminate this mandate starting Jan. 2014! — Ward Hinger, Eagle Point

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