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It was with disbelief that I read Mayor Traber’s comments in the April 29 Gazette-Times supporting House Bill 2796 which reduces wetland restrictions for developers here in Oregon. His comments included the phrase that “we are at a disadvantage when trying to develop new housing, economic opportunity or industry” because wetlands protections stand in the way of achieving those goals.

This slippery slope rational of “growth” has destroyed much of our wetlands already and needs to stop! Many of us in Corvallis in 1980, before your time Mr. Mayor, worked to save the Jackson-Frazier wetland from development and I don’t want to see that undone. Talk to the children who have attended Cheldelin Middle School and worked in that wetland to hear what they have learned wetlands protect!

I cannot believe or understand how you can ignore decades of accepted research and evidence that quite clearly shows that we are in an environmental crisis due in part to the destruction of habitat necessary for other animals and plants to thrive. We do not need more houses, industry, roads nor more people. We need protected green space.

The solution to most environmental problems on our earth is fewer people, and nothing will get better until there is a sustainable population of humans on our spaceship Earth. Meanwhile, please do not fantasize that a few more jobs, or a few more low-income houses will solve the difficulties of our poor. Don't pave paradise to put up a house!

William Switzer

Corvallis (May 1)

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