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Eastern Oregon: the 51st state?

Some Hood River residents are getting fed up on how the Oregon legislature is treating rural communities, sothey're seriously wanting to create a 51st state (More from KVAL in Eugene). While their division for east versus west is the Cascade mountains, Bend and Deschutes County (which are both east of the Cascades) are apparently not included in the running for the new state's capital or even included in the new state at all:

Koch said the booming tourist town simply isn't rural enough anymore.

"The Bend area doesn't fit as a rural community," said Koch.

The border would run right down the Cascades but go around Deschutes County. One thing Koch is sure of is that the new state would have fewer regulations.

While I agree that Bend is probably more like Portland than Klamath Falls, I don't think I could say the same about the rest of the County.

While this will probably never, even, happen, it is an interesting conversation topic: How would the state be funded (especially if Bend weren't part of it)? Where would the capital be? How about we just create a state with rural Eastern Washington, which pretty much is in the same boat as us with east-versus-west?

This also isn't the first time that a 51st state discussion has happened around here, as I remember some groups back in the day discussing making a state out of Southern Oregon and Northern California.

Posted by Jake on 05/08/08 @ 10:09 AM
Posted in Interesting, Local | Permalink

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