Day: April 18, 2014

Adhere to park master plan

During discussions about development at Keizer Rapids Park, city councilors and city staff refer to the park’s master plan. The plan is a guide for the development of the park in coming years. The original allows for minor changes but significant deviations require an amendment to the plan. It seems that master plan means different things to different people. Projects and improvements at the park must follow the master plan to assure the public that the process is transparent and allows for public comment. The large playground project now in the planning stages is considered to be a minor deviation because the master plan called for two playground areas—albeit somewhat smaller than the current plan. The consultant the city hired to help with playground plan advised that it be sited at a spot between the Keizer Rotary Amphitheatre and the parking lot for the boat ramp. This from seasoned professionals who have advised many other cities on just such a project. But then came a push to place the playground in an area that is now a hazelnut orchard close to Chemawa Road. In our view this is a major deviation from the original master plan and the plan needs to be amended as called for. The city should assure that it follows the letter of the master plan and not let it be interpreted for expediency’s sake. Developing...

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KHC thanks Young Life

To the Editor: We want to give Keizer Young Life a big  thank you for again helping with our spring landscape clean-up at Keizer Heritage Center (the “Old School” on Chemawa next to Keizer City Hall). On Saturday, April 5, 19 Young Life students and leaders helped clean up all of the landscape debris left after the trimming and pruning by Brian Hanssen of Hanssen Landscape.  These great students came down at 9 a.m. and were finished before noon, in filling a large hauling truck.  They not only picked everything up but also raked and swept so the sidewalk and landscape looked wonderful. Those helping were: Carter Alt, Marc Baiza, Miller Baumann, Shaina Dohrman, Kayanna Dunaway, McKinley Freeman, Michael Gerlicher, Erik Halvorson, Hannah Kannier, Serene Mistkawi, Tristan Mistkawi, Lexie Simpson, Kenny Valdez, Payton Williams, Shaylee Williams, Lizzie Wright, Zach Aldrich, Allan McLeod and Beau St. Peter.  Thank you. Al Rasmus Business Manager Keizer Heritage...

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Nevada showdown: all hat, no cattle

By DEBRA J. SAUNDERS Nevada cattle rancher Cliven Bundy and his well-armed supporters forced the well-armed federal government to back down and return Bundy’s seized cows — which were seized because Bundy, 67, stopped paying grazing fees in 1993. How does anyone get the government to back down? At first blush, Bundy seemed to have right on his side. He’s a cowboy who just wants to keep being a cowboy. The federal government, which owns more than 80 percent of Nevada land, including the land on which the Bundy family had settled, threatened to put him out to pasture. The Bureau of Land Management told the rancher he would have to cut back cattle grazing on federal lands to accommodate the threatened desert tortoise. So in 1993, Bundy stopped paying federal grazing fees. “They were managing my ranch out of business,” Bundy explained, “so I refused to pay.” As the Las Vegas Review-Journal editorialized, the federal government has endangered a Western way of life in deference to “the ‘threatened’ desert tortoise and a supposedly fragile desert ecosystem that somehow has sustained cattle and the reptiles since the 19th century.” The BLM surely has earned its black-hat reputation in Nevada. In a classic example of federal overreach, the BLM carved out a small “First Amendment Area” for pro-Bundy protesters, which only fueled the public’s distrust of government. Nevada Gov. Brian...

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