Is this really happening in our little town of Astoria? We are in the middle of one of the largest pandemics in history, and the numbers are growing daily. The deadly COVID-19 virus is spreading like wildfire and, yes, it's in Clatsop County now.

The Astoria City Council is being asked to approve a request by Pacific Seafood to house 80 temporary international visa workers at the former Astoria Pointe drug treatment center. This is at a time when all coastal cities are telling visitors to "stay away."

The City Council itself has declared an emergency. Government offices are closing. Restaurants and bars are all closed. We are on a lockdown. Even Mayor Bruce Jones stated don't come to Astoria, "stay away." Residents are in panic over their safety and health. These are terrible and frightening times.

So right in the middle of all this, let's move and pack 80 temporary international visa workers into a tiny former treatment center and nursing home (designed for 30) in a sleepy residential neighborhood of Astoria where families, children and elderly people live. This is literally throwing gasoline onto the fire.

The City Council should deny this application for the concern and health of its citizens, who have elected them. It affects all Astorians. You are there to represent and protect us. I speak for my 19 neighbors, and we are asking you to do the right thing and deny this application.



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(2) comments

Barry Plotkin

I believe Mr. Fenton has undermined his own argument by admitting that his concerns are purely, and selfishly, centered only himself and his neighbors in the vicinity of the proposed dormitory. There is no way that this issue affects "all" Astorians, and I believe that the City Council and the various City employees who will review the conditional permit will do so fairly and neutrally, and not with anyone's special interests in mind.

Scott Fenton

I respectfully disagree Mr. Plotkin. It does affect all Astorians and your comments contradict what the experts (CDC) are all saying as to how this virus spreads. Packing 80 people into a small and confined area dramatically increases the chance of the Covid-19 virus spreading. Should just one of the workers contract the virus, it will spread to the other workers rapidly endangering their health. When those workers come in contact with other Astoria residents whether it be in our neighborhood, yours, local grocery stores, gas stations, getting take-out food, etc., they run the risk of spreading the virus. I trust the City Council to weigh all the factors and make a responsible decision for all of Astoria. I hope you are healthy and staying safe.

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