Greg Robeson, who went to the top to find out why vandals weren't being prosecuted for damage wrought at the new high school, reads the answer he received from the White House. 

100 years ago

Feb. 17, 1921 — Dark Days Ahead for Village Dogs; Tax To Be Collected

Finding that the supply of dogs in Redmond is entirely too generous, the city council has ordered Marshal Julian to collect the license fee as provided for by the city code. For some time this procedure has been overlooked with the result that the canine family has increased to such an extent that it is wholly out of proportion in a city of this size. 

The fee provided is $2.00 for male and $5.00 for female dogs [editor's note: approximately $29 and $73 in 2021] and is due and payable August 1 of each and every year, so the license paid now will only afford protection until that time, when a new one must be secured. The councilmen felt that it would not be unfair to collect the full amount of the license fee now and a like amount this fall, as dog owners have had the use of funds rightly belonging to the city for some time past.

Owners will be given until March first to secure the licenses, but after the expiration of that time the marshal has been instructed to kill every dog found within the city limits without a tag.

Discussion brought out the fact that there is still another ordinance upon the city's books relating to dogs. This one makes it unlawful for any dog to be upon the streets, alleys or public places in the city of Redmond unless held under leash. This was said to have been passed during an emergency which developed several years ago when the "mad coyote" scare was experienced in Central Oregon. Under the provisions of this ordinance any officer or other person was given the privilege of killing at sight any dog running at large. For the present, this ordinance will not be enforced. 

[Editor's note: According to the Redmond Police Department, the current leash law provides a minimum $250 fine for unleashed dogs in public places. For more information about current dog licensing requirements, visit deschutes.org/finance/page/dog-licenses.]

75 years ago

Feb. 21, 1946 — Ration Book Four Should Be Kept

Housewives were advised today by the Office of Price administration to retain in their possession war ration book four, now used only to obtain sugar.

Although the currently valid sugar stamp 39 is the last stamp in war ration book four that is specifically labeled for purchases of sugar, spare stamps in that book will be designated as sugar stamps from time to time. For this reason, war ration book four should be retained even after sugar stamp 39 has been used, OPA emphasized. 

Sugar stamp 40 was used for the 1944 home canning program, OPA explained.

50 years ago

Feb. 17, 1971 — Redmond boy hears from White House

Last month a 10-year-old Redmond boy was so moved by the destruction wrought upon the new high school by vandals that he sat down and wrote to the President of the United states. 

Greg Robeson, a fifth grader at Jessie Hill School, had participated in family discussion of the wanton ruin of carpets, lighting fixtures, drinking founds and doors with his brothers Dan, a student at John Tuck, and Brad, a pupil at Lynch School, and his parents, the Don Robesons.

When his father, a member of the Redmond School Board, explained that law enforcement  officers often had their hands tied on this type of vandalism, even though they might suspect certain persons, Greg couldn't understand why. 

When his mother was unable to satisfactorily answer his queries as to why American laws were designed to protect the guilty as well as the innocent, he decided to go to higher headquarters for an answer. Nothing that his mother was too busy to write, he decided to do it himself.

And last week he received an answer -- a portrait of President Richard M. Nixon, a personal note signed by a staff assistant to the chief executive and a copy of the President's news release upon signing the Omnibus Crime Control Act of 1971.

"The President very much appreciates your thoughtfulness in writing. He is always pleased to hear from his young friends, and he wanted you to have the materials enclosed. It comes to you with his best wishes," read the note.

The omnibus bill, which apparently the President was signing about the same time that Greg was penning his communication, was, in the President's words, designed to "increase the effectiveness of our criminal justice system in order to reverse the unacceptable trend of crime in our nation." Specifically, it extended for three yeas the block grant approach of providing federal financial assistance to hard pressed state and local governments so they can accomplish necessary improvements in their law enforcement and criminal justice activities.

The new legislation also is supposed to increase the Law Enforcement Assistance Administration's ability to provide technical assistance to the states, to evaluate new law enforcement methods and techniques and disseminate useful information concerning them to those who can apply that knowledge and to collect information and assess the effectiveness of the program. A final purpose is the improvement of correctional programs and facilities.

Pointing out that the first two years of the program had brought basic and essential steps toward the reduction of crime in America, and noting that the prevalence of crime affects "each and every person in very human terms, I am determined to ensure that our efforts succeed," concluded the President's message.

While the young letter writer viewed the response from Washington with excitement, his father found it "a great commentary on our democratic system--that a kid gets a response." He pointed out that earlier Dan had received a wealth of information in answer to a letter to the National Aeronautic and Space Administration. 

Robeson views the exchange of correspondence as a "valuable lesson for Greg," pointing out that maybe in the future he'll know how to go about solving a problem, instead of just talking about it or complaining a lot as is so often the case.

25 years ago

Feb. 21, 1996 — Better, safer biking on city's agenda

Redmond should be the Chicago of the northwest, judging by its bike racks.

According to Ron Caramella, the secretary of the Redmond Bicycle Advisory Committee, the 10 racks proposed for installation throughout the city are identical to those used in the Windy City.

"They're very simple in design — similar to what's in Bend. Downtown will be more inviting to people on bikes," Caramella said.

The bike advisory group is a designated recipient of Oregon Department of Transportation funds given to the city for improvements, education or hardware. The latter covers the racks.

Responding to a request by the city for public comments on a proposed list of street improvement projects, the advisory committee for bike enthusiasts has recommended that Salmon Avenue, 23rd and 27th streets and Obsidian have "utmost priority" to provide safe cycling in the community. Antler, Quartz and Wickiup avenues also are on the list, lower in rank.

Additionally, the committee recommends the city put down bike lane striping and put up bike signs. Caramella said the bicycle committee proposed a "very grand" version of this project to the city about 18 months ago. Since then, members have "scaled down considerably" the proposals, he said.

Recommended streets for striping and signs include Black Butte (between 7th and Canyon Drive, 15th (between Highland and Obsidian), 11th (between Highland and Pumice), Obsidian (between Canal and Canyon Drive), 23rd (between Highland and Obsidian), Antler (between Rimrock and 23rd), Rimrock (between Antler and Highland).

Now in its third year, the committee has expanded its focus to include pedestrians and alternative travel, as well as cycling.

The principle is simple, according to Caramella.

"Whenever possible, leave your car at home," he said.


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