LETTERS TO THE EDITOR - Vote for change in Umatilla County


Headlines in the East Oregonian April 8 stated "Fair manager pay raises questions." That is an understatement. We seem to have a major problem in how our Umatilla County commissioners do business.

What employer would hire someone at a set salary and give them a raise before they start working? Their reasoning? They were negotiating for years on a memorandum of understanding for the fair manager, which still isn't completed. I worked with a labor union for 27 years negotiating contracts, it's foolish to raise pay before a legal and binding document is in place outlining all of the employees' responsibilities.

This county has a budget crisis! County employees are either taking cuts, wage freezes or extra work loads. Where on Earth did the Commissioner's come up with this idea? Peggy Clough was hired at an advertised salary that apparently was acceptable to her. When the budget for everyone else is being reduced, why did they spend extra money that was not necessary?

Another problem I have with the commissioners is the automobiles provided for their job. Did they get new cars this year? If taxpayers are paying for these cars, shouldn't they have identification on the car stating what it is used for? This concerns me, and should concern all taxpayers in the county.

The EO also reported that Sheriff Trumbo and Deputy Glen Diehl won their law suit against the county regarding discipline on the matter of purchasing autos for the Sheriff's Department. The court ruled the commissioners were wrong. The county has a legal advisor hired to help the commissioners make good legal decisions? Did they take his advice in this situation?

My point is we have commissioners who have lost touch with the residents of this county. I think all county residents should look real hard at our representation, and look at the candidates running against Bill Hansell and Larry Givens, and vote for a change!

I don't feel that we are being represented; I feel we are being dictated to. We need more transparency in county government, we need to know that our officials are doing a good job, and doing what is best for us, the people that pay their salary.

Linda Ferguson


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