Letters to the Editor

Letters: Oct. 11, 2019

Devagupta best choice for board

I am writing to support Rama Devagupta in her run for Position 5 of the Richland School Board.

Devagupta, has an extensive list of academic accomplishments and success as a community volunteer for over 12 years. She has been an advocate for educational programs and their implementation as a parent, community member, student advocate and educator. If elected as a board member, Rama will devote her intellectual capacity, hard work, time and dedication to serve the interests of students, teachers and parents. Rama is well informed about issues that affect the lives of the educational community. Students, parents and teachers will gain good, fair representation at the school board if Rama is elected. I hope she is.

Martha L. Sanchez Raj, Richland

We need climate adaptation plan

Recently I attended a presentation by a physician on health effects of climate change. Dr. Cate asked the audience what our region’s adaptation plan looks like; I trembled at the fact that our area has no such plan.

The state Department of Ecology reports that the impacts of climate change will intensify current challenges in managing water resources. The state’s water resources are already under stress from excessive water withdrawals, increasing conflicts among water users and demands on water resources, increasing water quality degradation, more frequent and intense droughts and floods, and loss of species, habitats, and ecosystems.

Ecology reports, “It will become more difficult to maintain an adequate water supply for communities, agriculture, and fish and wildlife. As the climate shifts, the timing and volume of stream flows will change due to reduced snowpack and earlier snowmelt.” Additionally, we are experiencing longer and more intense wildfire seasons, causing poor air quality and infringing habitat.

I am alarmed that Rep. Dan Newhouse does not have a plan of action to cope with these threats. The agriculture industry is negatively impacted and cannot be sustained without mitigation.

Rep. Newhouse, we need a plan NOW.

Chandra Romel, Richland

Lisa Thomas has been inconsistent

I’m an independent voter with friends across the political spectrum; this allows me many views and helps in researching candidates.

As we prepare for local elections, my attention has been brought to the many faces of Lisa Thomas, who is running for Richland City Council. I first noticed Lisa pop up online making fun of “artsy people” suggesting we had too many parks and could “stand to lose a few.”

I witnessed her then pandering to artists about helping them with projects. When asked about this flip-flop, Lisa vanished. She reappeared, this time it was about the homeless. To one group she talked about having resources to help, to others she mocked the homeless. When asked about this, again she vanished.

From her resume to her volunteer record, nothing is adding up. If we elect Lisa Thomas, which Lisa are we electing? Her opponent, incumbent Phil Lemley, a level-headed Republican, has a clear understanding of the job. Phil, who is on the council, hasn’t missed a single meeting. The choice between them is clear for me. Phil has my vote.

Samantha Caldwell, Richland

Meadows the pick for port commission

I am writing this letter to encourage citizens in the Port of Kennewick District to vote for VJ Meadows as commissioner in District 2. She has a long history of management and director positions supporting economic development in various organizations such as the Tri-Cities Food Bank, Richland Chamber Commerce, FEMA, Mid-Columbia Alliance of Chambers, Fluor Corporation and various nonprofits.

As one of her supporters, I have been “door belling” in Kennewick and have learned that many people do not know how much property is included in the Port of Kennewick’s districts 1, 2 and 3. The Port of Kennewick extends to Finley, Richland on the south side of the Columbia River, part of West Richland, Paterson and all of the City of Kennewick. Maps of the Port of Kennewick districts can be found on the Port of Kennewick website.

Please join me on Nov. 5 in casting your vote for VJ Meadows, Port of Kennewick Position No. 2.

Dorothy Hansen, Kennewick

Vote Mastaler for Kennewick board

Patrick Mastaler has been involved with the Kennewick school district for nearly 20 years. As the father of 3 daughters, husband of a teacher, and substitute teacher himself, Pat knows the importance of a strong school district. A member of KSD’s Facilities Advisory Committee for 18 years, Pat helped identify district needs and prepare bonds and levies to fund renovations for aging schools, and construction of new schools in new Kennewick neighborhoods. He worked hard to encourage voters to approve construction bonds and levies to support technology and educational programs for our district.

Pat is a tireless supporter of our community serving on the boards of directors for Junior Achievement, Red Cross and YMCA. He has been a classroom volunteer for Junior Achievement and Tri-Cities STEM programs for several years. As a manager on the Hanford site, Pat is accustomed to dealing with numerous stakeholders and combines determination, fairness and compassion to overcome obstacles.

Pat has years of experience in education and business that will help our district continue to meet the needs of our growing community. I encourage you to join me in voting for Pat Mastaler for Kennewick School Board Position No. 5. We need his experience, determination and dedication.

Mary Davenport, Kennewick

Warner right pick for Kennewick

I believe that Chariss Warner would be an excellent addition to Kennewick City Council. Chariss is my neighbor and she truly has the best intentions for our community. Chariss’ accomplishments speak loud and clear. She strives to fully educate herself on new issues and form solutions that are in the best interest of the city. Her wide array of experience gives her great insight into the issues the city continuously faces. She is driven to build community support for our schools without increasing costs to the taxpayers.

She is accountable, honest and puts the city’s best interest before her own. She takes the time to truly listen to residents concerns and input. There is no doubt in my mind that she would ensure that the voices of our city are reflected in growth and lasting positive change.

Please join me in supporting our community by electing Chariss Warner to Kennewick City Council, Position 5.

Shelley Ajax, Kennewick

Moak excellent port commissioner

Tom Moak is an excellent port commissioner. We need to keep him onboard pushing hard for projects that are in his blood as a tireless public servant and make this area a better place to live. The proof is in the pudding. Just look at what the Port of Kennewick has accomplished in the last six years since Tom was elected. East Kennewick now has public art and a vibrant public gathering place near the cable bridge with award-winning wineries and an expanding food truck court that flipped what was a sadly rundown, economic dead zone in historic Kennewick into a new, exciting, happening place to be for so many. And with the possibility of a culinary school locating on the site, the sky is the limit for Columbia Gardens.

Given Tom’s 30 years of championing causes in support for downtown, historic Kennewick, it should come as no surprise that his shoulder was on the wheel to turn the Port’s Columbia Gardens vision into reality. Now Tom’s energy is laser-focused on Vista Field and the enormous benefit that this redevelopment project can bring to the entire Tri-Cities area. Tom is the right champion for this project and deserves our support.

Chris Barnes, Kennewick

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