David Douglas and Parkrose schools praised by Saxton at East Portland visit

When gubernatorial candidate Ron Saxton toured outer East Portland this week, see what other specific comments he made about our area ‚ and why his audience seemed to like what they heard ‚

Candidate for Governor Ron Saxton, being introduced to East Portland businesspeople by Ken Turner, the East Portland Chamber of Commerce Governmental Affairs chair, and manager of Eastport Plaza.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton
Amidst criss-crossing the state, gubernatorial candidate Ron Saxton asked to meet with members of the East Portland Chamber of Commerce and neighbors during a stop in outer East Portland on October 31. “I came to listen to your concerns,” he said.

The theme of his remarks was that the state of Oregon has enough funds to substantially improve education and public safety and education. “A great deal of the problem is how funds are allocated.”

Saxton said the way you improve schools and services is by growing the economy, not by growing taxes. “I love Oregon, and I want to build up the state,” Saxton said. “My job as governor is to be a partner with mayors, county commissioners, and others who want to help make the economy grow.”

Ron Saxton, explains his positions to East Portland businesspeople Becky Wehrli, CLTC; Paul Ellison, Bank of the West; Dan La Grande, La Grande & Associates Public Relations; and Bill Bitar, William Frank Bitar & Associates.

Praises local schools
Parkrose and David Douglas are two districts working hard to manage their expenses and still provide a good education, Saxton said. “These two districts operate more efficiently than most, while providing a good education. Other districts could learn from them.”

There are 11 school districts, he continued, in the metro Portland area. “Each one does its own payroll and purchases its own supplies. The duplication is enormous. Without giving up local control, think how much money they could save if all the districts worked together, in a coordinated way, to save money. And, with ‘The Chalkboard Project’, all Oregon schools could pool their purchasing power, saving millions.”

Promises to encourage job growth
“As governor, I’ll work with existing businesses to help them grow ‚Äì instead of standing in their way. I’ll work with the city to encourage them to work in a more business-friendly way. I want to be a partner with people who want to help themselves ‚Äì be they in associations, companies, or municipalities.”

Saxton listens to a story told by Richard Sorem, of Stewart & Tunno Insurance Agency, Inc.

In summary Saxton said “A lot of the things that frustrate you are the same things that frustrate people across the state. Instead of widening the urban/rural divide, I’m trying to help people get together. Oregon is a fabulous state. But we’re not remotely living up to our potential here. I’m a private sector guy who is frustrated with the way things are going ‚Äì but I have optimism that we can do better.”

¬© 2006 David F. Ashton ~ East PDX News

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