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Re: “Time Running out to Submit Signatures for County Gun Measure

The recent Circuit Court challenge by 2 local women to the original ballot language of the petition changed it to read, "Authorizes Sheriff to determine constitutionality and enforceability of firearms regulation." Even ardent gun advocates recoil from conferring such overreaching authority to a single individual. Not exactly a selling point for libertarians.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by fosterfell on 08/07/2018 at 5:57 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor

In response to Mr. Boyd, I am so very proud to have Senator Merkley as our US Senator. Arguably, his presence at the converted Walmart in Houston sparked the national outcry that led to the reluctantly issued Trump order to reunite these families. Actually, the current number of people seeking admittance to the States equals the numbers at the end of the Obama administration. But only Donald Trump has the genius to exacerbate an already horrid situation. True to his form of governance, this is a crisis of Trump's own making.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by fosterfell on 06/28/2018 at 8:27 PM

Re: “Letters to the Editor

In applauding Marco Munez' letter, I must say that we can now begin to breathe a bit. We are nearly 36 months distant from Donald Trump's hate-spewed announcement to run--and only 32 months from the end of his Presidency. Peak Trump has come and gone and--with it--the heartless politics that propelled him into our lives.

Posted by fosterfell on 06/01/2018 at 10:24 AM

Re: “Deschutes County wouldn’t enforce gun laws under proposed ballot measure

Mr. Poe--and I am glad we are communicating in this way--the issue is not with SAPO, but with the the ballot measure designated as Initiative Petition #9-2018-1. The SAPO (Second Amendment Preservation Ordinance) will not be on the ballot, just the ballot measure that can give rise to it. The language of IP #9-2018-1 is now too vague and might (unless clarified) justify non-enforcement of background checks in Deschutes County. It is already difficult enough to enforce background checks; why make it tougher? For the full text of this ballot measure (also referred to as the ballot "Title") go to . . .…

. . . and see for yourself. Thanks, Mr. Poe, for the chance to interact; I hope we have future opportunities to communicate.

Posted by fosterfell on 04/25/2018 at 12:22 PM

Re: “Deschutes County wouldn’t enforce gun laws under proposed ballot measure

Mr. Poe, no one is attempting to ban handguns for self defense or conventional rifles for hunting. On both sides of this issue, we need to stop giving vent to our feverish paranoid fantasies. We should start, I think, by agreeing to reasonable gun safety measures--such as background checks, which in poll after poll are supported by the public (even by gun owners) by percentages in the high 80's. Unfortunately, the ballot title of Initiative Petition #9-2018-1 (and the ordinance--the SAPO--it would spawn) would give Deschutes County the "right" to disallow enforcement of background checks now contained in the Oregon Firearms Safety Act. How else can you interpret a ballot title that includes the question, "Should Deschutes County expand constitutional definition of firearms and prohibit enforcement of laws that regulate their manufacture, sale, and possession?"? How else interpret language that "would make unconstitutional in Deschutes County any law or regulation that restricts a person from possessing firearms . . ." I think the writers of this ballot measure should, at the very least, change its language to require Deschutes County to recognize and enforce currently lawful background checks. Such a change would clear up any confusion about what the Sheriff can or cannot do, and would strike a more reasonable tone. Are the writers of this ballot measure willing to make this change?

Posted by fosterfell on 04/25/2018 at 9:36 AM

Re: “Deschutes County wouldn’t enforce gun laws under proposed ballot measure

Please be aware that any resident of Deschutes County can file an objection to this proposed ordinance by means of a "Petition for Review of Ballot Title." Even to non-attorneys, there seem to be various legal problems with the way this ordinance is written: (1) It grants judicial powers to the Sheriff. (2) It appears to strike down background checks (in contravention of the existing Oregon Firearms Safety Act). (3) It appears to violate an existing state statute (2017 ORS 166.170) that gives authority for gun legislation EXCLUSIVELY to the State Legislature and that prohibits Counties and Cities from enacting civil or criminal ordinances of their own related to firearms. Challenging this proposed ordinance is a 2-step process. First, submit your written objection to the Deschutes Circuit Court (1100 NW Bond St.) by 5 PM Friday, April 27, 2018. Second, notify County Clerk Nancy Blankenship in writing by 5 PM the following business day that you have filed the objection. Her office is in the Deschutes Services Building at the corner of NW Hill and Lafayette.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by fosterfell on 04/23/2018 at 9:29 AM

Re: “May Election Endorsements

Far from enhancing Bend's vision and influence, I fear that adoption of Measure 9-118 (direct election of Bend's mayor) may prove to be counterproductive and damaging to local democracy. Most worrisome is inclusion of the term, "political head of City government" in the ballot title. What does this mean? Where is the definition?

Here is an example of what may go wrong:

A slim majority of the current Bend City Council supports the city's Climate Resolution, which is non-binding and entirely dependent on private funding, but, nevertheless, was a hard won victory achieved in large part by young grassroots activists. But, suppose local special interests donate hundreds of thousands of dollars to elect their own hand-picked mayor, who, then, uses his power and influence to ignore the Climate Resolution. This conflicted mayor, then--in opposition to public sentiment--goes on to promote Bend as a city with environmentally unfriendly transportation and construction policies. Sound like something an unchecked "political head" might do? Well, do I need say, "Just look at the White House"?

The elected mayor concept is a pale remnant of the original mission and purpose of the charter review committee, whose dedicated citizens stumbled a bit in their bid to roll out what might have been their crowning accomplishment, namely, councilors elected from wards.

A mayor elected at large might have made sense in the context of a ward system of government--maybe something for the next charter review effort to consider. While they are at it, I would love to see 3 additional reforms:

(1.) Bend should join the hundreds of cities nationwide that impose strict limits on campaign donations.

(2.) Bend should ease up on requirements that make it virtually impossible for citizens to qualify ballot initiatives and to recall public officials.

(3.) Bend should have a City Council chamber capacious enough to accommodate the growing numbers of citizens getting woke and involved in local civic affairs.

With respect,
Foster Fell

4 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by fosterfell on 04/21/2018 at 4:03 PM

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