Letters to the editor, September 5, 2013

2013-09-05T07:00:00Z Letters to the editor, September 5, 2013 Coos Bay World
September 05, 2013 7:00 am

Thankful to Bandon Fire Dept.

I would like to recount another of our wonderful blessings here in Bandon: Our Bandon volunteer fire department.

Recently I had a kitchen fire. It was frightening and potentially very dangerous. I called and a fire truck with a full crew was at my door in 10 minutes. How do they do that? How do they get to the fire station, get geared up and here in 10 minutes? I am amazed by the professional and compassionate service that these great volunteers (and their illustrious chief, Lanny Boston) provide.

And this was not my first call. A couple of years ago I was awakened by smoke at 6 a.m. on a Saturday morning. Again, full fire truck and crew here in 10 minutes! They did a careful and thorough investigation until they discovered my heater fan had “frozen” and the system was overheating. I would have lost my home without their quick response.

And, yes, a third kudo.  Five years ago when we were preparing to open the Bandon Community Health Center, we contacted the fire department for assistance in obtaining used equipment from the Kaiser health system in Portland. We rented a truck and one of our firemen and our BCHC executive director drove the truck to Portland, loaded up and returned to Bandon at 10 p.m. on Friday night. When he arrived, he called his buddies and the whole fire department showed up to carry massive, heavy exam tables and multiple other pieces of equipment up the stairs, set up each exam room and BCHC was ready for business Monday morning.

I moved to Bandon from a big city. Each day, I count my abundant blessings living here in Bandon. Among those blessings are the brave, compassionate and very generous members of our volunteer Bandon Fire Department.

Thank you, thank you!

Gail McClave


Preschool seeks new teacher

We are so excited about this year’s preschool & toddler time 2013/2014 class. As summer is closing out and we are all preparing to head back to school, we want to announce that Ms. Anna Polamalu has accepted a position as the new kindergarten teacher at Ocean Crest Elementary School. Congratulations, Ms. Anna! We are actively interviewing for a new preschool teacher and teachers assistant.

While we are searching for a wonderful new head teacher, preschool start will be delayed at least one week. The preschool board will be calling each registered student’s family this week to speak with you all in person.

If you have any questions, please send us a message on Facebook or call the preschool board president Jessica Markham-Brink at 541-297-2983.

Thank you for your patience while we make this transition.

Jessica Markham-Brink

Bandon Community Preschool

Public benefit of land swap?

“Overwhelming public benefit” is the criteria to be used in accepting the proposal made by Bandon Biota (i.e. Bandon Dunes/Michael Keiser) for a trade of 280 ocean view/lake view acres of state parkland along U.S. Highway 101 south of Bandon for wetlands along the Coquille River, 111 oceanfront acres, funds to purchase Whale Cove, and funds to purchase Grouse Mountain in Grant County, plus $300,000 worth of gorse control work on Coos County state park lands. The State Parks Commission had a question-answer open house. The video is available at www.oregon.gov/oprd/pages/bandon.aspx. Following are some questions we have asked the commission to consider:

  • What might happen to the 280 acres transferred from public to private ownership if a golf course ceased to be a viable commercial development?
  • What is the fair market value of the parcels in question? The 280 acres in the state park natural area appears buildable if the gorse were removed and has beautiful lake and ocean views. Are the Bullards Beach oceanfront 111 acres and Whale Cove parcels buildable? What is the dollar value versus the intrinsic values of the various parcels? Does the parks commission want the Grouse Mountain acreage for a park? Do the Grant County owners and residents want a park there? Is it available for sale?
  • What will happen to the 280 acres of state natural area if Bandon Biota or Mr. Keiser no longer exist?
  • How will the transfer of the land and following development effect contiguous landowners?
  • Has the proposed development been evaluated relative to the longterm development of the Oregon Coast?
  • Does Bandon Biota have plans for another “vacation resort” with private lodging and restaurants, thus offering more competition for local tourist businesses?

None of us will live forever, but the land on this wild rivers coast will be here for our grandchildren. Will this swap be an overwhelming public benefit?

Lawrence and Myra Lawson


CAM thankful for support

The Aug. 3 maritime dinner was a major event for the Coos Art Museum, raising $7,268.

On behalf of the museum, I extend my appreciation to the individuals and businesses whose generous donations were essential in making it a success. Without the support of donors such as those listed below, museum operations would not be possible.

Business and individuals that donated goods and services include: Art by the Sea Gallery & Studio; Best Western; Blue Herron Bistro; Candace Kreitlow; Cindy and Terry Sisco; Coast Karate; Coney Station; Cranberry Sweets and More, Mayor Crystal Shoji, Liv Drahos; Egyptian Theatre Preservation Association; El Sol Restaurant; Empire Café Bistro; Farr’s True Value; Hough, MacAdam and Wartnik; North Bend Lanes; Outdoor-In; Pottery Company; Sage Place; Second Street Gallery; Shoji Planning; Southern Oregon Romneys; Sterling Bank; The Inner Garden; Oregon Connection; Tony’s Crab Shack; Washed Ashore and Winter River Books.

Steven Broocks

Coos Bay

Commissioners served us well

I wish to thank the Coos County commissioners — Bob Main, John Sweet and Melissa Cribbins — for their attention to the mosquito problem here in Bandon.

At their Aug. 27 meeting they devoted more than an hour to fact-finding and solution investigation of this issue. They allowed all participants, including myself, to air their views.

The county has proceeded to work with USFWS to obtain the necessary permitting to try and solve the problem. They showed genuine concern for the citizens who are affected and are working within their means to get both an immediate and long-term solution worked out.

In this case our county government is serving its constituents well and I thank them for their efforts.

Roger Straus


Spraying could be harmful

The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation has grave concerns with the chemical controls proposed for salt marsh mosquitoes at Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge and in the Bandon area. Although no public health emergency has been declared, and no existence of mosquito-transmitted disease has been found, a decision was made to spray around 10,000 acres in and around the refuge with two insecticides, Dibrom and MetaLarv S-PT.

Dibrom is intended to kill adult mosquitoes. The active ingredient is naled, an organophosphate nerve agent that is highly toxic to humans as well as to a wide range of wildlife, including aquatic insects and crustaceans, which provide food for native fish. Drift from spraying can negatively impact pollinators such as honey bees, native bees and butterflies. Toxicity aside, this type of spraying is widely recognized as being an ultimately ineffective form of mosquito management, especially for a species such as the salt marsh mosquito (Aedes dorsalis), which is being targeted at Bandon, because it can fly 10 miles or more from its emergence site and will recolonize the treated area.

MetaLarv S-PT is much less toxic to humans than Dibrom, but MetaLarv is highly toxic to aquatic insects and crustaceans including crab, and may be linked to developmental defects in amphibians.

The plan has also not addressed the potential impact that spraying could have on shorebirds, song birds and waterfowl that use insects and crustaceans as food as they migrate southward as well as on the federally endangered western snowy plovers that inhabit coastal beaches year-round. In addition, there is apparently no consideration of how this could affect fisheries. Both chemicals are directly toxic to fish, and many young fish feed on the invertebrates that would be killed under this treatment plan.

The plan is contrary to the widely adopted tenets of Integrated Pest Management, in which the “hotspots” of mosquito larval development are determined and those sites are spot-treated with the least toxic insecticide possible.

This spraying project is not a solution and has long-term impacts and the Xerces Society calls on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to halt it and develop a rational, environmentally sound and effective mosquito management plan for the Bandon Marsh area.

The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation is an international nonprofit organization that protects wildlife through the conservation of invertebrates and their habitat. For more information on the Xerces Society, visit www.xerces.org.

Scott Hoffman Black

executive director

Dr. Celeste Mazzacano

aquatic conservation director

Xerces Society

Co-authors of the report: Ecologically Sound Mosquito Management in Wetlands

Don’t kill our honeybees

Please don’t kill our honeybees. Honeybees fly 3-5 miles for foraging. Yes, I can probably cover the hives at night, but I can’t tell them where not to fly.

I called the Coos County Public Health Department. They said, “the mosquitoes do not carry West Nile Virus and pose no public health menace.” My wife and I walk every morning into town. Yes, we suffer some mosquito bites. Yes, they will bite through clothing. Yes, they are a nuisance. But is that a good reason to poison the wild pollinators that pollinate our fruit trees and other foods?

My wife and I have four beehives that are about a half-mile from the spray zone. The foragers can fly into that area and bring the poisons back to the hive. If there is no public health menace, why are they spraying?

For more information about Dibrom, visit http://www.chem-tox.com/brevard/main.htm

For a picture of my one-of-a-kind log hive, visit http://solarbeez.com/2013/08/11/bee-beard-log-hive-alive-and-well/.

Pat and Sue Reed


Will spraying hurt salmon?

A marsh is a marsh. Marshes are great breeding grounds obviously for mosquitoes, but I am sure no one ever thought this would happen.

I heard spraying the marsh with pesticides was the plan. I hope someone makes sure these pesticides or whatever they use does not kill off salmon or make it so salmon consumption for humans is unhealthy.

Will the dead bugs floating in the water that get eaten by fish and birds and kill salmon and birds, too?

I have heard through a third party (unverified) that resorts are already spraying and that caddies have already noticed less deer around. Something needs to be done; I just hope whatever gets done is well thought out and does not hurt the salmon runs or the environment or contaminate cranberry bogs.

Dave Schradieck


Natural mosquito control best

Beekeepers work to keep bees alive, to pollinate our food supply. Aerial spray over Coquille River Marsh to kill mosquitos may also kill bees. Spray will settle over everything.

Bees bring pollen from trees and plants back to the hive to feed their brood. Better to forget the spray, fill the ditches and put cows back on the fields. Natural control is best and will help the bees.

Patti and Hal Strain

Myrtle Point

Bandon is not ‘infested’

It seems a pity that all the publicity, even on Jefferson Public Radio, states that “Bandon” is infested with mosquitoes. Within the city limits, where the tourists go — the Beach, the South Jetty, Beach Loop Drive, Old Town, south of town — there are no mosquitoes.

Shouldn’t we say north of Bullards Bridge, outside the city limits of Bandon?

Myra G. Lawson


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(2) Comments

  1. Bandonite32
    Report Abuse
    Bandonite32 - September 05, 2013 2:48 pm
    In answer to Mrs. Lawson; our property is well within the city limits and only two blocks from the new Cheese Factory.
    We have been plagued with mosquitoes all summer for the first time since we moved here 11 years ago. We also own property in Bandon Heights which is infested with them. It is only a matter of time till the rest of the City will be facing the same problem we have. The sooner the spraying is done the better.
  2. hablarclaro
    Report Abuse
    hablarclaro - September 05, 2013 2:19 pm
    So, Myra in saying:

    "Within the city limits, where the tourists go — the Beach, the South Jetty, Beach Loop Drive, Old Town, south of town — there are no mosquitoes.Shouldn’t we say north of Bullards Bridge, outside the city limits of Bandon?"

    Aren't you really saying "Hurray for me and screw you"?

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