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Sense Of Community Remains

Trout Lake News for March 8

By the

Trout Lake Newswriters

Sarah Burr Arnold, 395-2669

sba_352@gorge.net

Sean McGroarty, 395-9394

seanintroutlake@yahoo.com

Kira Fogarty

tlfarm2school@gmail.com

Sofie Brubaker

Up here at the edge of the paved roads, where our community is nestled in a valley bordered on three sides by mountains, and our nearest neighboring town is 15 miles away, we have a sense of geographic isolation. We feel like a distinct and (we would like to believe) unique community. And though we may have different opinions, or professions, or religions, there remains a sense of unity in Trout Lake.

But alas, the county does not seem to share that sentiment. In a decision that has dismayed many, if not most, of Trout Lake's residents, the county has split our town into two separate voting districts. A meeting with the county was held in Trout Lake last week, at which time it was hoped the reasons behind the decision would be explained to Trout Lake residents -- most of whom oppose the decision. But the meeting did little to shed light on the matter. In fact, the meeting served no real purpose at all, since the decision was made final in December without public input or notice.

In this writer's opinion, the fact that a decision regarding voting -- the foundation of our democracy -- was made without public input or consent, is beyond ironic, and in my opinion, an abuse of public power. Given that there was no explanation given as to why such re-districting was necessary, this writer concludes only two valid reasons for such a decision: incompetence or ulterior motive.

County officials may dismiss such a view, as is their right, but unless and until they sufficiently explain their actions to the Trout Lake community, such views will only persist and deepen over time. Just my $.02. Any and all complaints should be directed at me, and not the staff of the Enterprise. And now more news

Congratulations to both of Trout Lake School's Destination Imagination teams for their great performances at the regional competition last Saturday. Mrs. Sherburne's middle school team placed first, and will advance to the state competition on March 31. Great job, and good luck!

Students from Trout Lake School are entered in the FIRST Robotics Regional Competition in Portland this coming Thursday through Saturday. We wish them luck!

The next meeting of the Trout Lake Men's Club will be Saturday, March 10, at 10 a.m. at the grange. All men of the community are invited to attend, and are encouraged to bring a friend. There will be a presentation by Jay McLaughlin, executive director of Mt. Adams Resource Stewards, based in Glenwood. The Stewards were founded in 2004, and over the past several years have developed projects and programs that touch on natural resource stewardship, rural economic and community development and education. Most recently, the Stewards completed their first land purchase as part of the Mt. Adams Community Forest Project. The project will strive to showcase sustainable forestry, while preserving public access and engaging local communities in the management of key forested landscapes. Jay will share information on Mt. Adams Resource Stewards' work and how they hope it will benefit communities of the Mt. Adams region.

Submitted by Trout Lake news writer Sean McGroarty, seanintroutlake@yahoo.com

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