Letters to the Editor

Savas understands the realities
West Linn Tidings

As a Democrat and Neighborhood Leader who knocks on lots of Democratic doors in my local precincts, I am concerned.

How can someone with no government or volunteer service, with a vague resume, who has lived and worked out of Clackamas County and Oregon for most of the past decade, win the tacit endorsement of other Democrats simply by dint of party label?

County commissioner is a nonpartisan position. I may lean to the left, but I will not support the unseating of a commissioner as dedicated, smart and hard-working for our county as Paul Savas simply to follow the party line.

We need commissioners who understand the realities of what can be achieved at the county level, not someone who appears fixated on national and state issues but doesn’t know where else to begin.

Grover Jeffrey Bornefeld
Jennings Lodge

Common-sense approach
Lake Oswego Review

I have been a Paul Savas supporter since I first met him over 20 years ago. At that time, he was an elected official of the Oak Lodge Water District and then the Oak Lodge Sanitary District. I have watched him mature over those 20 years, but one thing has never changed — his common-sense approach to any issue he takes on.

The attention to detail that made Paul successful in his automotive business is evident in his approach to issues that daily face the County Commission position he now holds. That is the kind of person I want to see continue in that position. Paul not only thoroughly does his homework on every issue he faces, he also does it with honesty and integrity.

I sit in on most County Commission policy sessions and closely observe the five commissioners at work. I see and hear the variety of issues they face daily and observe the kind of restraints they are under in their attempts to accomplish even minor changes to the bureaucratic system they must operate within. Paul, with his common-sense approach to issues, works well with others to come up with innovative solutions to most of their major roadblocks to success.

He knows and understands the restraints that daily face an elected official. He regularly questions the soundness of issues that come before the commissioners and has managed to work to accomplish solutions to the multitude of societal problems the commissioners face daily. He is not a one-issue person, but rather approaches all problems with equal fervor.

I will be voting for Paul Savas for Clackamas County commissioner, and I urge you to join me.

Thelma Haggenmiller
Oak Grove

Support Savas
Lake Oswego Review

As a longtime resident and activist who has most recently been involved with the library settlement between the county and Gladstone, I know I speak for many others when I say that if you care about libraries, there is no better candidate for county commissioner than Paul Savas. If it weren’t for his efforts, I have no doubt that the Oak Lodge community would have lost its library instead of beginning the community involvement process to design and build a new one.

But Commissioner Savas is effective and caring about many more issues than the library. Rather than “failing too many people,” as his opponent claims, Commissioner Savas has been the one working hardest for the under-represented people of Clackamas County, from victims of domestic violence to homeless veterans. He has spent countless hours of his own time attending Community Planning Organization meetings throughout the county, making sure unincorporated citizens are heard.

Paul listens, he does his research and he persists in the face of opposition from other board members, so that issues important to his constituents are given the attention they need to be resolved. We can count on him to move issues from discussion to action.

It’s easy to criticize a standing commissioner. I don’t agree with all of Paul’s positions, but I do trust in his process of learning the facts, evaluating the issues based on evidence, his commitment to do the necessary work and his dedication to our county, where he has a long record of community involvement and service. I urge my neighbors to give Paul their support.

Leslie Shirk
Oak Grove

Paul Savas in the News

Candidates discuss regional issues
Sandy Post

All but one candidate running for local elected office attended the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce Government Affairs Committee’s candidates forum Monday night, April 9. From 5:30-8 p.m. would-be representatives for House District 52, Senate District 26, Clackamas County Clerk and Clackamas County Commissioners No. 2 and No. 5 fielded questions from chamber members and the community at large, introducing themselves — some for the first time — to Sandy.

With 11 candidates present, the forum had a variety of voices, though many opponents seemed to agree on fundamental needs like improved budgeting for education.

Savas bids for third county board term
Wilsonville Spokesman

In the eight years since Paul Savas joined the Clackamas County Board of Commissioners, many of the core issues facing the region haven’t changed.

But Savas has changed, and he feels more prepared than ever to advocate on behalf of matters like transportation, housing and employment if he’s elected to a third term at Position 2 in May.

Danger of congestion tolling diversion on local streets
Clackamas Review

When the Oregon Legislature passed HB2017 last year, the transportation package did not include any construction funding for Interstate 205 to resolve the 5.8-mile-long bottleneck. The transportation package did however include a mandate to initiate tolling of Interstate 5 and I-205. Now, as the discussion of tolling continues, the concerns of interstate traffic diverting onto local roads is heating up.

If I-5 and I-205 are tolled, how many motorists will use local roads to avoid paying tolls? Diversion is not a new phenomenon; as a result of growing congestion it is already occurring in the Portland-metro region.

Portland region officials begin work on congestion pricing tolling plan

Amid concern about the Portland area’s growing road congestion, a key committee met Monday to begin putting together a tolling plan for the region.

The Oregon Department of Transportation advisory committee is set to come up with a plan by June for using tolls to help alleviate congestion.

ODOT officials say Interstate 5 now faces about 15 hours of delay on weekdays, while Interstate 205 typically has daily tie-ups for about 10 hours. Mandy Putney, an ODOT major project manager, says congestion is projected to double by 2040.

Colton Corner: County commissioner talks local issues
Molalla Pioneer

Clackamas County Commissioner Paul Savas attended the March meeting of the Colton Planning Organization. CPO Chair Gary Hampton announced that because Savas has declared his candidacy for re-election and no other candidates were in attendance, topics of discussion needed to be held mostly to questions and answers and what county measures are in process at this time.

Savas discussed a number of subjects that are important to the rural areas of Clackamas County.

Freeways top list of Clackamas County priorities
Clackamas Review

Clackamas County “continues to grow and prosper, and that is not to say that we have solved all of our problems,” said County Board Chairman Jim Bernard in introducing the State of the County event this week.

All five county commissioners spoke at the Jan. 31 event hosted by the North Clackamas Chamber at the Monarch Hotel. Transportation issues came up again and again at the event.

Ken Cowdery, champion for helping homeless, to retire
Portland Tribune

After 42 years working on the front line of the homeless problem, Ken Cowdery has come to a simple conclusion.

“The problem is so big and complicated that everyone has to work together to solve it — government, nonprofits and the private sector,” he says.

Cowdery plans to retire from his current job as executive director of the Home Builders Foundation in January. In that capacity, he has worked to connect small operators of emergency shelters needing improvements with contractors and suppliers eager to donate their help and materials. Most of those in need are small faith-based organizations that are barely raising their monthly operating costs but are based in aging buildings that need work.