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Sen. Edwards Meets with Local Residents

EUGENE, Ore. — State Senator Chris Edwards invited the community to voice their opinions on key issues.

On Friday, Sen. Edwards joined two other lawmakers to answer questions from the public.

Residents asked questions on a number of issues facing Lane County, and they say voicing their opinions is part of a healthy process for the community that keeps everyone informed.

Health care, gun control and education topped the list of issues residents asked about at the meetings, but there were other topics residents were concerned with too.

“I came today because I’m concerned farm school issues and I wanted to make sure there was support for at the legislative level for a farm school bill that’s introduced that would help keep dollars in Oregon and support local farms and help kids understand where their food comes from,” said Eugene resident Megan Kemple.

Edwards shared his first stop at New Day Bakery with Representative Nancy Nathanson. They spoke to a packed house and addressed a bill that would give harsher penalties for distracted driving.

“It is scary. it’s one of the reasons why I don’t ride a bike from my house in Santa Clara down to – because I just don’t feel safe,” Edwards said.

Edwards’ second stop was Alpline Springs Retirement Home, catered to senior citizens. He was accompanied by Representative Val Hoyle.

Most of the retirees line of questioning was geared toward lack of funding for their care and maintenance of roads…

“We have two sides of a major road, and there’s no crosswalk there because they paved the crosswalks that used to be there. And in that process we have people crossing a highway that is fast, high-speed area,” said resident Dennis Gregory.

He says he hopes that’s something Sen. Edwards can address and get changed for the safety of not only the residents of alpine but the entire community. The senator says he enjoys meeting with the community and wishes he could venture out from Salem more often.

“It’s one of the reasons I drive home every night so that I can go to the grocery store in the evening and just see ordinary people, regular real people shopping in the grocery store, and sometimes I run into people that I know and we talk about this issue or that issue and just getting the everyday perspective,” Edwards said.

The legislature did not hold meetings Friday to allow legislators to return to their districts to hear from their local communities.

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