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Ballot Measure 76 has Trainsong residents wondering if it is the right thing to do, or not.

Measure 76 asks for the renewal that 15 percent of Oregon Lottery money goes to the parks and natural resources in Ore.  This renew would be a permanent allocation of money from the Oregon Lottery funds to the natural resources. In the past 12 years, the lottery funding has helped restore public access to beaches and waterways and has also created some of the nations best state parks.

One of those state parks, Stub Stewart State Park, is located on 17,000 acres of hilly forestland just west of Portland in between HWY 26 and Vernonia. The park is Ore.’s first new full service state park in more than 30 years that was inaugurated in July of 2007.  The park offers many opportunities such as campsites, hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding trails, to say a few.

He does not want the money to come out of his winnings, says Mark Bonham, fromJackpot Buy and Sell, but as long as it is already there, he does not see the problem with giving 15 percent of the money to the lottery.

This measure is not creating taxes. It is taking money from the Oregon Lottery retails sales and putting it to help Ore. resources such as public education, economic development, problem gambling treatment and state parks and natural resources. Measure 76 is to ensure that money from the Oregon Lottery will be placed into the parks and natural resources permanently.

“Just renew it or pass it again,” says Bonham. Bonham did not think that the measure should include a permanent dedication of 15 percent. “I’d love to see them work on a rainy-day fund.”

What may not be understood, however, is that Oregon Lottery funds have been locked down until 2014 by Measure 66, approved by a two-thirds vote in 1998. Measure 76 is only a preliminary measure that will make it easier to set up a future measure that legislative leaders, according to the Oregonian, are working on, which will further dictate how the funds for the state parks and natural resources will be used.

Some people did not think that the funding for the parks and natural resources should be continued, however. “We’re spending too much money on it now, already.” Says David Fenton. “We should be spending it on law enforcement instead.”

What do you think? Should the 15 percent of the lottery money have a permanent presence in Oregon, or should the money be allocated in other ways?