Letters to the editor

Illinois Valley News welcomes letters to the editor. Please e-mail them to laura or dan@theivnews.com

‘Illinois Valley News’ encourages letters to the editor provided they are legible and not libelous or scurrilous. All letters must be signed, including name, address and telephone number. The latter need not be published, but will be used to verify authenticity. The “News” reserves the right to edit letters. Letters are used at the discretion of the publisher.

(Editor’s Note: Views and commentary, including statements made as fact are strictly those of the letter writers.)

GP resident says Courier is best
The Josephine County Commissioners have an action Order this Wednesday that will remove county legal notifications from the Grants Pass Daily Courier and place them in the Illinois Valley News. This smaller newspaper with one sixth the circulation of the Courier would become the county’s official newspaper. And after 100 years we ask “Why”?
A change is not in the best interests of the public.
No reasons are given as to “Why” the Commissioners are trying to rush this Order through before the public can respond. We can only guess.
In the past Commissioner Baertschiger has publicly said he doesn’t like the Daily Courier reporting. Is this Order based on personal feelings toward reporting of a Courier story? Is it retaliation? I hope not. I expect Commissioner’s to put aside personal feelings and do their best governing for all of us.
The law requires selection of a newspaper that best gives actual notice and that continues to be the Grants Pass Daily Courier.
Jean Mount
Grants Pass


Reader says get prepared
Dear Editor,
Having lived in the woods for so long, I get enjoyment from seeing the seasons come and go. On a dreary, wet winter day, I’m stoking our woodstove (or cleaning the ashes out of it) and find it easy to forget about the real threat of wildfires in these parts, including the persistent smoke-filled summer skies for months on end.
But I breathe easier because year-round, I am lucky enough to work with a talented assembly of professional forest ecologists, fire fighters, fuels mitigation specialists, conservation managers, watershed coordinators, local contractors, and community organizations – all of whom share the same goal: to assist residents of the Illinois Valley with advance preparations for the wildfire seasons ahead.
We meet monthly, usually at the IV FIRE headquarters, and go by the name of the “Illinois Valley Fire Resiliency Oversight Group”, or IV-FROG for short. What is IV-FROG up to during these winter months? How are their combined efforts helping us address the risks of another catastrophic wildfire? Through careful planning, strategizing, and engaging with multiple stakeholders, IV-FROG is tapping into resources to bring about healthier, more resilient forest conditions.
By thinning overly dense brush, cleaning up ladder fuels and maintaining a path where fire can resume its historical role of cleansing the land, IV-FROG intends to use all of the resources it can pool to achieve a more fire-adapted ecosystem. One way that IV-FROG intends to accomplish its goal is by working with the community where need is established.
If you are wanting to see what help is available in advance of the change in seasons or want to learn more about fire-preparedness for the upcoming 2023 wildfire season, reach out to the IV-FROG for suggestions – the fire-adapted community mindset is a year-round proposition.
One of my friends summed up our local weather thus: “The Winter is too long. The Spring is too short. The Summer is too long. The Fall is too short.”
Cheryl Nelson
Cave Junction


GP resident says stay with Courier
We often hear the expression that power corrupts. The morality of people in power is always being tested by public attention. This applies surely to local public officials and as they are tested by fearless and accurate reporting.
Herman Baertschiger our presiding commissioner seems to be constantly at war with those who report what he says or does.
It is often denial and blame directed at the reporter who recorded and accurately reported the words or action.
When this denial of the facts as reported turns to accusations of bias or malice against the messenger and retaliation against the publisher, we see the abuse of power in plain sight.
This week the commissioners are considering an order to transfer the public notice publication from the Daily Courier to the Illinois Vally News. The only reason given publicly is that Herman doesn’t like the Daily Courier reporting.
The law dealing with the selection of the news paper requires selection of a paper in general circulation that best gives actual notice.
To transfer this from the only daily paper with many times more subscribers to the weekly paper in Cave Junction with almost no subscribers north of Hays Hill is retaliatory facially illegal and not in the best interest of all citizens of Josephine County.
Charlie Seagraves
Grants Pass