Newspaper Archive of
Hells Canyon Journal
Halfway, Oregon
May 8, 1996     Hells Canyon Journal
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May 8, 1996

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Page 5 Hells Canyon Journal May 8, 1996 Guest Opinion Can Government Change? by Gary Weeks By contrast, we in govern- Listen to the radio talk ment have too seldom been shows, able to tell you whether we Read the election results,got results with the money Eavesdrop on conversa- given us for the programs. tions at the coffee shop. Now, the Oregon Bench- Each tells you the same marks give citizens a wayto thing ... that people like you measure performance in ar- wantpeoplelikemetochange eas such as Oregonian's government, health, education and self'-. This may come as a sur- sufficiency. prise but, even though I've But the Benchmarks, like been a state administratoranJ tool, willwork to change since Tom McCall was Hover- government only if you learn nor, I agree: Government how to use them and demand should change, that they be used. For any For real change to occur, it government service, we all must come from those of ushave a right to ask, "What is who work in government andthe outcome we're seeking?" from the very people who call If you want to learn more the talk shows, casttheirbal- about the Oregon Bench- lots, and air their concerns marks, you may write to the over coffee. Oregon Progress Board, 775 Based on my 23 years Summer St., N.E., Salem workingin six state agencies, 97310, or call (503) 986-0039. here's what I've concluded Participate: Govern- you and I can do to changement workers cannot do it government, all. Nor should they. When Reinvest savings: I've Tillamook County dramati- never talked to a taxpayercally reduced its rate of teen who didn't understand thispregnancies, government concept. If you saved $75 a agencies were joined by the month by refinancing your energy of churches, service mortgage, you might investgroups, YMCA, new media that money in paint, better and others. drainage or other home im-To find a model, one need provements to prevent cost- only look back 220 years to lier repairs later, the founding of the republic Now apply that common- by citizens who rolled up their sense idea to government. If sleeves and did the hard work Oregon saves millions be- of identifying the problem, cause fewer people are on creating the solutions and welfare, as we are now doing, doing the work. then why not put the moneyFrom our 1996 perspective, to work to reap savings else- we view the people of 1776 as where? The savings might be heroes. But apart from fight- spent to reduce teen preg-ing the world's most success- nancies or alcohol and other ful revolution, much of their drug abuse, for example, heroism reflected what all of Good news: It's beginning us can be doing every day in to happen. The federal gov- our neighborhoods, in our ernment has just given Or-schools and in public meet- egon the go-ahead to save ings. money by helping more Years after leaving his of- people off welfare, rice, Governor McCall gave Usually, when a govern- writer Studs Terkel an excel- ment saves money, the agency lent definition of what a hero never sees the savings. Now, really is: under a special federal-state "Heroes are not giant stat- agreement called the Oregon ues framed against a red sky," Option, federal officials say McCall said. "They are people Oregon's successful welfare who say, this is my commu- program may be able to rein- nity, and it's my responsibil- vest some of the cash savings, ity to make it better." Citizens who want smaller Each of us can qualify. Let's government, lower taxes and do it. fewer social problems should demand more of this. (Editor's note: Gary Weeks Demand outcomes: If is director of the Oregon De- you take your car to a me-partment of Human Re- chanic, you ask for a certain sources, thestate'shealthand outcome and you know human services agency. He whet er yougotjt; either the has been a ;tate gove rnment : ca( ,. hns . r. t oesn t. Photo by David Baka EMTS FROM HALFWAY pose in the back of a 1991 Ford diesel ambulance donated recently by Grande Ronde Hospital. The box-style provides more equipment storage space and more interior work space, which will allow better patient care during the long transports from the Panhandle area. The ambulance, which is being equipped and repainted, will begin service in Halfway about the first of June. I III ARTIN6 MAY f#TH TUESDAYS 99 TACO PAY tfAMTOSPM WEDNESDAYS $2.75 SOUP N SALAD BAR DAY 11 AM To S PM DELl ITEMS TO GO POTATO SALAD. SPAG//ETT/SALAD" PEA SALAD 8ROCOLL/6 CAULIFLOWER SALAD. MACARONI SALAD R/EP CHICKEN sol HOMEMADE SALAD DRESSINGS RANCH" BLUE CHEESE" ITALIAN" fO00 ISLAND" FRENCH SOLD BY THE PINT OR BY TttE GALLON BAKERY |TE IS TO GO PIES April, CI'/ERRY, PECAN, LEMON MERINGUE HOMEMADE C,V AMON Oo vurs COMING SOON SOFT YOGURT/C CREAM M C#/N WITII A NEW FLAVOR FVERY WEEK PLUS A NEW ESPRESSO MACHINE SUNDAY, MAY 12T" MOTIIERT DAY DINNER SPECIALS f2 NOON - 6 P.M. MOTt-IER; EAT FOR FREE/ 742-5833 WHEN ACCOMPANI BY ANOTHER PERSON Xcli t Street, ffalfway m