My friends, if we want to improve and enhance our county, we must begin with the governing body, the board of commissioners. Ongoing news media stories make it clear we have certain board members not working for you but for special interests. I don’t need to spell it out for you.

We need a board of commissioners that will work together on our behalf, and cooperatively with their fellow commissioners in the other counties, as well as the councils of all 16 cities in Clackamas County. By cooperating with each other and finding common ground, we can save thousands of taxpayer dollars while preserving the beauty and livability of Clackamas County.

It takes hard work, time, and dedication, but it can be done. I have a record that shows just that. From cleaning up the contentious Clackamas River Water board to cooperating with Sunrise Water Authority and Oregon City, I have demonstrated I can work for you to improve relationships, save money, and accomplish a great deal.

Clackamas County is a special place to live, work, and play — from the rivers, lakes, mountains, and streams, to the parks and cities within her midst. I cannot think of a better place, and the people of our county deserve a commission that will work positively with others to keep it that way.

My goals include establishing a public/private partnership between Clackamas County, Clackamas Community College, unions and businesses in order to enhance, possibly via apprenticeships, training for employees. (I have been a graduate of apprentice and journeyman programs myself.) The focus being support for raising stagnant wages and support for unions and their efforts to assist workers in maintaining or achieving a decent standard of living.

Also, as a veteran, I have some ideas on how we can help veterans with job training, drug, alcohol, and PTSD issues.

The sheriff’s department has a number of vacancies and county coverage after 3 am is woefully thin. It is one of my priorities to be certain that the department has the funding it needs to provide adequate patrol services at all times. The deputies deserve no less.

Education is the key to success — this includes special needs children. I would use the position of commissioner to lobby for more support from the state legislature to assist those children. They generally require more intense, specialized assistance which needs additional funding.

I think we need to make a concrete decision on our road maintenance issues in this county, as we are $17 million dollars short of what is needed. If we want employees to live and work in their communities, we need to attract more business. To do that we need a dependable and efficient transportation grid and a well-trained and readily available work force.

Finally, I recognize that we are a regional economy. It is crucial that we develop a positive working relationship with Metro and our surrounding counties. Asking Metro for their cooperation on planning issues, on the one hand, then criticizing them on the other, will not lead to a successful resolution for the public.

I have a quote I live by —

“Your candle doesn’t burn brighter when you blow someone else’s out!”

Respectfully submitted,

Ken Humberston