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I hope you had a safe and sane Labor Day Weekend. Ours was less so.

Fireworks around West Devil’s Lake, near us. It frightened our dogs. The way it always does.

We actually had a paying guest in our Airbnb who told us she was “on the spectrum” (autism) so the noises were particularly distressing, and besides, she needed her sleep for the long drive to the airport on Sunday.

I texted her that I would call Police non- emergency. I must say, the dispatcher was both prompt and sympathetic.

Eventually the racket quieted down. Then comes Sunday night and it started up again. I called the police, and again got a good response from the dispatcher. The officer even called me while he looked for the perps: friendly and very professional--that was great. He hung up when he caught them.

During our conversation, the officer told me that this has been an ongoing problem this summer, and he revealed that the vast majority of the perps were tourists. Mostly from Washington State, by the way.

I told him that as a long time Portlander, I always noticed how WA drivers tended to be more aggressive and selfish on the highways. He laughed and told me his wife was always saying the same thing.

So let’s go over this, because it’s really not very complicated. (1) It’s bad for residents. (2) It’s much worse for dogs and wildlife. (3) It’s bad for business, as I mentioned above. (4) Outside of Fourth of July, it’s illegal and punishable by law. (5) We are in the middle of long High Fire Danger season, so it’s INSANE. I won’t even try to explain that although it’s understandable kids want to have some fun, it’s selfish and irresponsible to the community.

So: what are City Council, the Mayor, and City Manager doing about this? I was told that they recognize that it’s a real problem. But I don’t see a single step being taken to send a strong message against this nuisance - in the media, in city communications, in marketing from Explore Lincoln City, and in city signage. Are all of you just ok with this?

Business can also play a role in this. Our tiny Airbnb listed NO FIREWORKS in its house rules. Every hospitality venue in town could follow suit--and the city could mandate this, if necessary.

If all else fails, divert some of that Border Protection funding to seal off the selfish crazies in Washington State, where they belong.

Mitch Gould,

Lincoln City

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