A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Cylvia Hayes and Oregon prosperity

Written January 10th, 2014 by Hasso Hering
Any chance of reviving industry as a means to fight poverty?

Any chance of reviving industry as a means to fight poverty?

Governor Kitzhaber and Cylvia Hayes as shown on the governor's website.

Governor Kitzhaber and Cylvia Hayes as shown on the governor’s website.

Turns out that Oregon has a “Prosperity Initiative” and Cylvia Hayes, the governor’s lady, is in charge of it. I had never heard of this until Willamette Week reported that Hayes had given a talk about prosperity in Portland on Dec. 16, when she got a parking ticket for displaying a state police pass on the dash of her Prius. The governor’s office said it was OK because her talk was an official function.
The story sent me to the governor’s website, which explains that First Lady Cylvia Hayes is leading “the Oregon Prosperity Initiative, … a bold approach to creating a robust, thriving economy by removing barriers to overcoming poverty and empowering citizens to maximize their potential.”

The website says the initiative wants to do this by, among other things, supporting food banks, telling people about the crisis and cost of poverty, developing partnerships with various organizations, and “embedding poverty reduction strategies in the 10-year state budget plan and the governor’s education and health care transformation initiatives.” In other words, write more strategies, initiatives and policies. Give the policy wonks in Portland and Salem something to do and hope that poverty goes down as a result.

There has to be a better way, and quicker. Like what? Like being more aggressive and trying to revive industries making use of Oregon’s natural resources — such as timber, farm crops and minerals. Doing that might lead to growth in jobs that don’t require years of higher education and thus would actually help those who suffer from poverty most. (hh)

3 responses to “Cylvia Hayes and Oregon prosperity”

  1. Ted Salmons says:

    Having the governor’s live-in, an unabashed liberal Democrat, run the Oregon Prosperity Initiative (that must keep her on the payroll) makes about as much sense as me asking Ted Bundy for advice on relationships with women. Doomed to fail from the start.

  2. Bill Kapaun says:

    Shouldn’t the governor recuse himself from such “appointments”?
    How many more of his cronies get free parking passes?

  3. Jim Engel says:

    It’s the “Democratic Crony Machine” at work friends right here in Oregon. And we thought it only existed in New York & Chicago. Wake up complacent voters, he’s gonna be here for another (4). Referring to Hayes as “The Governor’s First Lady” is like calling a escort for the evening my girlfriend. Like, is there a string of ’em the governor keeps..?? Does he have to flaunt it so blatantly!


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