Archive | December, 2012

The Pressures of Teachers Today/Yesterday

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

By Brian Wolf
For The Tribune News

Back in the day, each school district established a straightforward and relatively strict set of ground rules for their teachers to follow. These regulations might appear harsh by today’s standards, but they were both important and reasonable to local communities and school boards of the time. One such list of teacher rules dated from 1872 read as follows:
Teachers each day will fill lamps, clean chimneys.
Each teacher will bring a bucket of water and a scuttle of coal for the day’s session.
Make your pens carefully. You may whittle nibs to the individual taste of the pupils.
Men teachers may take one evening each week for courting purposes, or two evenings a week if they go to church.
After ten hours in school, the teachers may spend the remaining time reading the Bible or other good books.
Women teachers who marry or engage in unseemly conduct will be dismissed.
Every good teacher should lay aside from each pay a goodly sum of his earnings for his benefit during his declining years so that he will not be a burden on society.
Any teacher who smokes, uses liquor in any form, frequents pool or public halls, or gets shaved in a barber shop will give good reason to suspect his worth, intention, integrity, and honesty.
The teacher who performs his labor faithfully and without fault for five years will be given an increase of twenty-five cents per week in his pay, providing the Board of Education approves.
A similar list, circa 1915, directed toward “schoolmarms,” stipulated that:
You will not marry during the term of your contract. You are not to
keep company with men.
You must be home between the hours of 8 p.m. and 6 a.m. unless attending a school function.
You may not loiter downtown in any ice cream stores.
You may not travel beyond the city limits unless you have permission of the chairmen of the board.
You may not smoke cigarettes.
You may not under any circumstances dye your hair.
You may not dress in bright colors.
You may not ride in a carriage or automobile with any man unless he be your father or brother.
You must wear at least two petticoats.
Your dresses must not be any shorter than 2 inches above the ankles.
We may smile at the stern simplicity of these archaic teacher guidelines. However, present-day teachers face fresh and demanding expectations of a completely different sort which focus instead around shrinking resources, increasing class sizes, unfunded mandates, rising student achievement benchmarks and evolving teacher evaluation standards.
In the Harrisburg School District, teachers, classified staff and administrators have recently joined forces to serve on Teacher Evaluation and Achievement Compact Advisory Committees whose mission it is to establish meaningful plans for addressing many of the ambitious new requirements.  Teachers are also busy aligning their curriculum in preparation for the rapid onset of rigorous Common Core State Standards and Smarter Balanced Assessments.
I sincerely appreciate the valuable contributions of all those who have stepped forward to help address these many daunting challenges. However, I particularly applaud the steadfast efforts of our teachers. The pressures impacting today’s teachers may vary greatly in scope and complexity from those experienced by their predecessors of yore. However, I remain confident that our teachers will continue to, just as their forebears did, effectively support student learning and social development while maintaining a positive atmosphere of emotional stability and growth.

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Parents Night Out

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

Photo by Kyle Krenik
Coburg Police Department hosted their 2nd annual Parents Night Out at the Coburg Grange on Dec. 14, 2012.  This year they provided child care for 55 children while their parents enjoyed time holiday shopping or free-time knowing their children were safe in the hands of officers of the Coburg Police Deptarment.  SONY DSC

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Child Pornography Cases Go Uninvestigated Due to Budget Cuts

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

By Lane County Sheriff’s Dept

LANE COUNTY – The loss of undercover child pornography investigations is being felt in Lane County as cases go uninvestigated.  Prior to the July budget cuts, the Lane County Sheriff’s Office was investigating several cases of delivery of child pornography.  When the budget reductions went into effect, the loss of a Forensic Analyst position coupled with the loss of other contributing positions meant that cases went uninvestigated, and the crimes will continue to occur due to lack of resources.
One recent case uncovered over 40,000 electronic images of child pornography.  The offender in possession of these images was a registered sex offender in Lane County.  Because of the detailed and thorough investigation by Deputies and the Forensic Analyst, that offender was sentenced to 10 years in prison for his crime.
In another case a search warrant was served in an investigation that started as a Child Pornography case.  While serving the warrant it was discovered that the suspect had also physically victimized a local youth, and lived in a prime location to groom other potential child victims.  That case resulted in the offender being sent to state prison as well.
Detective Aaron Hoberg says that there are a large number of child pornography downloads in Lane County, enough to keep two full time detectives busy.  Prior to the budget cuts, he and
other Lane County Sheriff’s staff chose the most egregious cases to pursue to keep this type of crime from happening in our community.  At the time of budget reductions, there were over 40 cases of delivery of child pornography that were left to collect dust due to budget cuts.  These cases will likely not be investigated, and without investigation there is no prosecution or accountability.  This is especially serious when you consider that the victims are children; sometimes local children.
The Sheriff’s Office is continually working towards a solution to the public safety funding issue.  The lack of child pornography distribution investigation is one service among many that was lost in recent budget cuts.
Despite the inability to investigate these types of crimes, the Sheriff’s Office urges you to report any distribution of child pornography or the use of children in pornography immediately.

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Oregon Agricultural Commodity Commissions

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

Seeking Applicants

By The Oregon Department of Agriculture

OREGON – Nominations are being solicited for open positions on several of the state’s agricultural commodity commissions. Among the commissions with vacancies are those representing dairy products, alfalfa seed, Dungeness crab, raspberries/blackberries, sheep, and potatoes. Those individuals appointed as commissioners administer producer assessments spent on commodity commissions’ promotion, education, and research projects.
Commission positions that are accepting applications at this time include:
Oregon Dairy Products Commission – 1 producer, term ending June 30, 2015.  Oregon Alfalfa Seed Commission – 1 producer & 1 handler, terms ending June 30, 201. Oregon Dungeness Crab Commission – 1 producer, term ending June 30, 2015. Oregon Raspberry & Blackberry Commission – 1 handler, term ending June 30, 2014.  Oregon Sheep Commission – 1 handler, term ending June 30, 2013.
Oregon Potato Commission – 1 Malheur or Harney county producer, term ending June 30, 2016.
The Oregon Dairy Products Commission appointment is to fill the vacant position for the South Coast Region, which includes Douglas, Josephine, Jackson, Klamath, Coos, and Curry counties. Because the position has been vacant for more than 90 days, the position is now open to any qualified producer in the state.  The exception is for those producers from the North Coast Region (Tillamook, Clatsop, Lincoln counties), as that region is at its maximum representation.
Appointments will be made by Oregon Department of Agriculture Director Katy Coba. A suggested deadline is Jan. 9, 2013. The director will begin making appointments after applications are received and reviewed.
Applicants for any commodity commission position must be a US citizen and an Oregon resident. For more information on qualifications and a complete listing of openings, go to http://www.oregon.gov/ODA/ADMD/Pages/cc_applications.aspx, or contact Commodity Commission Program Manager Kris Anderson at 503-872-6600.

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ODA Firewood Rules

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

Firewood coming from outside the Pacific NW will need heat treatment and a label

By The Oregon Department of Agriculture

OREGON – The Oregon Department of Agriculture has finalized the rules for a new state law addressing imported firewood that is set to go into effect on January 1, 2013. Starting in the New Year, Oregonians will have a choice to buy local or buy firewood that has been heat treated and labeled as pest free.
“The rules prohibit firewood from outside the Pacific Northwest unless it has been treated at a temperature of 140 degrees Fahrenheit for one hour to kill all the pests inside it,” says Dan Hilburn, director of Plant Programs with the Oregon Department of Agriculture. “That’s very important because there are invasive pests and diseases outside of our region that could travel to Oregon on firewood.”
The 2011 Oregon Legislature passed the firewood law and gave ODA regulatory authority. For the past year, ODA has been working on the rules that go along with the law. “We think these rules will be put into place just in the nick of time,” says Hilburn.
Starting Jan. 1, Oregon consumers should look for two types of firewood available for sale. “There will be wood that is cut in Oregon, Washington, or Idaho that is allowed without heat treatment,” says Hilburn. “That is the best firewood. If it harbors any insects, they are the ones that are native to Oregon. Those are not a threat to our forests. The other kind that will be available to consumers is firewood coming from outside the Pacific Northwest which will be heat treated. It will have a label stating that it pest free.”
States with invasive species problems like emerald ash borer, Asian longhorned beetle, or sudden oak death have plenty of dying trees that are cut for firewood and then moved. These trees die in the first place because of the insect or disease, which can then show up hundreds of miles from any local infestation as people take the wood with them or sell it far from the source. It has happened in other parts of the country, it can happen in Oregon.
The state’s new firewood law is the first major legislative victory for the Oregon Invasive Species Council. OISC has done significant outreach and education prior to the law coming into effect, including a major “buy it where you burn it” campaign two years ago that featured billboards and radio ads.
A handful of other states have enacted their own firewood importation laws. Neighboring Washington and Idaho will be watching closely as Oregon moves forward with its law to help protect its natural resources.
With the camping season at an end, the attention now shifts to homeowners who heat with wood or simply enjoy a crackling fire as the weather gets colder. They’ll be looking for a source of wood for fuel. Oregonians now can help do the right thing.
“I look at it like the Smokey Bear campaign, which is designed to get people to pay attention and put out their fires,” says Hilburn. “This law is protecting our forests from another threat, the threat of invasive species. We need people to make sure they are buying local wood or buying wood that has been heat treated.”
For more information, contact Dan Hilburn at (503) 986-4663.

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Nurturing families

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

The New Year brings new programs for parents

submitted photoJC Community Center volunteer program development lead by Kathy Furrer will be available for information on a 10-week course in parenting beginning after the New Year free of charge to families with children six years old and younger. Visit her at the JC Community Center at 175 W. 7th Ave. or call 541.998.4767 before Jan. 8 to sign up.

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JC Community Center volunteer program development lead by Kathy Furrer will be available for information on a 10-week course in parenting beginning after the New Year free of charge to families with children six years old and younger. Visit her at the JC Community Center at 175 W. 7th Ave. or call 541.998.4767 before Jan. 8 to sign up.

 

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune

Tri-COUNTY – Starting a week after New Years, free parenting classes providing useful information about raising children less than six years of age will be available to local residents. The program is called Nurturing Families and is open to everyone in the tri-county area.
This 10-week course is the result of a partnership between the Junction City Community Center, the JC School District and a $3,000 grant from LaneKids, sponsored by the United Way of Lane County.
“We want to be working with families together as a community center and as a school,” by bridging the two entities to provide sources for parents to glean information from, said Laurel Elementary second grade teacher Cheryl Glasser. “We’re working together to make our community better and to make parenting easier.”
LaneKids’ mission is to give parents the knowledge, tools and support systems to nurture their children’s optimal development and school readiness. It meets this goal by coordinating educational parenting opportunities across the county.
Junction City will be hosting the program at the JC Community Center. Cheryl Glasser will be teaching the course, having recently attended a nurturing parenting workshop.
“After three days, I learned a lot that I wish I had learned sooner,” Glasser said, a mother herself. “It was very informative, and I enjoyed the parenting class too.”
Classes will run once weekly for 10 weeks from 11am-1pm on Tuesdays starting on Jan. 8 to Mar. 13. Free lunch and snacks will be provided. Onsite activities will be available for the children of class participants. A manual will also be provided free of charge. Class size will be limited to 10-12 parents or family members.
After the group comes together, “the first class is finding out about each other and looking at areas we wish to work on,” Glasser said. “I then go into my resources and pull out materials to help [participants] gain more parenting skills in those areas.”
Some of the topics covered include child developmental stages, reading to your child, discipline and other topics tailored for each group.
This is the first year of the program, but Glasser plans to continue holding more classes in the future. She would like to offer other classes in spring for parents with children ages six to 10 and for parents with children entering kindergarten.
With several parents already interested, Glasser encourages all family members with an interest in raising children to attend.
Together “we will see how we can work on parenting skills to help our children become productive members of society,” she said.
For more information or to sign up for the program, visit the Junction City Community Center at 175 W. 7th Ave. or call 541.998.4767.

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A town in progress

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

McDonalds is coming to Coburg

photo by  kyle krenikMcDonalds is coming to the new Truck ‘N Travel truckstop located at the I-5 interchange on Pearl Street in Coburg. With the new business comes 35 new jobs. For more information contact Sunny Sandar at sunnymcd1@yahoo.com. A new convenience store will share the building and a new Shell gas station will replace the old one.

photo by kyle krenik
McDonalds is coming to the new Truck ‘N Travel truckstop located at the I-5 interchange on Pearl Street in Coburg. With the new business comes 35 new jobs. For more information contact Sunny Sandar at sunnymcd1@yahoo.com. A new convenience store will share the building and a new Shell gas station will replace the old one.

 

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune

COBURG – Beautification in Coburg continues as local improvements stay on track with many approaching completion. City Administrator Petra Schuetz reported on several new business and projects around town.
For new businesses, Schuetz said a new McDonalds will be holding a grand opening on Feb. 27 located on Pearl Street at the new Truck ‘N Travel truckstop by the I-5 interchange. McDonalds is also hiring about 35 local employees, so contact Sunny Sandar at sunnymcd1@yahoo.com for more information.
A new convenience store will be sharing the same building as the McDonalds and a new Shell gas station will replace the old station.
Several other major projects are also occurring around town that are moving at a fast pace.
The first project is the Coburg Loop Path, where currently three different segments are in three different phases.
Segment 1 that’s part of the Coburg I-5 interchange improvement is 80 percent complete and is currently winding down for the winter.
“The project will resume in early spring for completion of that segment,” Schuetz said.
Segment 2 of the Loop Path Project is in the engineering phase. This segment is located between Pearl Street north and west to Sarah Lane. Construction should begin by the end of next year.
The city has also applied for a State Transportation Improvement Program – Enhance funds for Segment 3, which could be built in 2016 if funded. Segment 3 would connect the elementary school and a residential neighborhood to the rest of the Path system. It would also make improvements at the intersection of Coburg Road and Coburg Bottom Loop Road.
Schuetz said the city wastewater project is also on schedule.
“The bid announcement for Phase IV should be posted this month,” she said.
The bid opening is scheduled for Jan. 31 with a prebid meeting on Jan. 8 where respondents can ask questions. The contact for submitting bids is project manager Ron Walz from Kennedy/Jenks Consultants, the project engineer.
Also in Coburg, the city council will be looking at a resolution in a special session held on Dec. 19 to consider extending the line of credit for its current Department of Environmental Quality loan by $2 million dollars for the wastewater project.
“For funding purposes we must maintain a prescribed reserve fund level for the wastewater project during and after the project is finished,” Schuetz said. “When our latest estimates do not meet those targets, we need to look at options such as an extended line of credit,” such as the loan increase.
The decision to increase the loan for the wastewater system came from looking at the available financing options. This information must be provided to funding agencies before the city can move forward to bid for the fourth and final phase of the project.

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Skatepark Update

Skatepark Update

Posted on 26 December 2012 by admin

JC committee reviews issues after recent grand opening

Photo by Vera Westbrook Many patrons use the JC Skatepark since its grand opening on Oct. 27, both skaters and BMX bicycle motocross riders. The JC skatepark committee will stay in tact and observe for another six months to address any issues that may develop.

Photo by Vera Westbrook
Many patrons use the JC Skatepark since its grand opening on Oct. 27, both skaters and BMX bicycle motocross riders. The JC skatepark committee will stay in tact and observe for another six months to address any issues that may develop.

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune

JUNCTION CITY – Since the skatepark opened in October, the JC Skatepark Development Committee has been busy dealing with the challenges that come with a new city park.
Committee member Nicholas Harrington brought up concerns at a Nov. 28 meeting about experienced BMX (bicycle motocross) riders using metal pegs while riding their bikes in the skatepark. Plastic bike pegs are allowed, but metal pegs are not as they can damage the concrete features.
His concerns involved a stunt called a ‘stall’ where he said riders “lock in with one peg on any particular obstacle.” He was particularly referring to a cement bench on the top of the bank that bike riders with pegs have been landing on. “Over time they will break that bench in half,” he said.
In response to Harrington’s concerns, the committee decided to place stricter signage at the park regarding pegs. Committee member Councilor Randy Nelson also volunteered to patrol the park to confront patrons with metal pegs to impress upon them the importance of the ‘no peg’ rule.
Another issue involved garbage scattered about the park. Visitors may be responsible for scattering trash, but Community Services Director Melissa Bowers said the wind also may have contributed. As a solution, she recommended replacing the current plastic garbage cans with concrete ones.
Locals say that most of the damage to the park is done by visitors from Eugene. But once the newness of the park wears off, the number of out-of-towners is expected to decrease.
Another issue was lights. “People who work can’t use the park because it’s dark,” said Harrington, a skater himself who works during the day. Lights with timers set to turn off at a certain time were suggested as were lights with motion detectors and timers.
A fence issue was also addressed at the northwest corner of the park. Presently the fence aligns at knee height from the top of the skatepark feature. As a solution, the committee plans to increase the height of the fence by four feet to prevent those who perch on top of the feature from going over, should they lose their balance.
Evidence of alcohol consumption and smoking was also seen primarily in the women’s restroom. Several Neighbors also called about not being able to see into the park at night. The JC Police Department will be consulted about possible lighting solutions and increasing park patrol.
To discourage hanging out in the gazebo area, Nelson suggested locking the gate on the east side of the park near the gazebo and opening the gate on the west side on Laurel Street instead.
“When the weather is good, the park is like a magnet,” Nelson said. The committee will be meeting for another six months with a meeting scheduled for March to discuss further updates.

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Abundant Ideas for River Road Neighborhood

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

Abundant Ideas for River Road Neighborhood

By Carleen Reilly
For The Tribune News

RIVER ROAD – About 30 neighbors gathered for the River Road Community Organization (RRCO) Annual Holiday Dessert Potluck. An abundance of ideas for enhancing our neighborhood were expressed. Perhaps some of these will tickle your fancy.
Because the Goodwill Store in our neighborhood center has closed, many ideas were projected on that location. Frequent suggestions were to return it to its original use as a grocery store. Of course, neighbors wanted updated versions: a store or co-op with organic or natural food containing bulk foods, produce and other food sourced within 100 miles; perhaps a deli with salad bar, bakery and cafe with a bookstore; a health food store; or a farmers‘ market with artisan crafters. Other ideas were for an indoor astro turf soccer field and soccer shop, a neighborhood resource as a meeting place, or an expanded River Road-Santa Clara Volunteer Library.
As we discussed these suggestions, it became clear that this wasn‘t the only neighborhood location that we could dream up visions for. Vacant land between Kelly Middle School and the Northwest Expressway and various other large locations along River Road seem to have temporary tenants and huge parking lots that are underutilized. Several people asked for organic community gardens and one person wanted “gardens that look like gardens” with availabilty of inexpensive water. Another request was to not use pesticides and herbicides to protect bees. They are also seeking people who are willing to host bee hives to keep bees thriving and to pollinate flowers, trees, and shrubs. One big idea was for front lawns to be turned to gardens for healthy food, as an opportunity to reconnect neighbors with one another, and to reduce crime by having eyes on the street.
Another round of ideas centered on biking and pedestrian amenities. A request was made for a bike and pedestrian way along Northwest Expressway with access connecting it to neighborhood streets. One of our members noted that such a bikeway is in the master plan. This was a pleasant surprise to most of us. Mandatory bike safety classes for 12 years of age and up was an ardant plea. One mom wanted a sidewalk between River Road and River Road Elementary School with an added blinking light and the 20 MPH speed limit enforced. Another vision was for the West Bank Bike Path and Park along the Willamette River to have it enhanced with community gardens, dog park, and children‘s playground.
Another neighbor has a vision of large welcome signs at the north and south ends of River Road, inviting vehicles to slow down to enjoy the beauty of the neighbor and be aware of the prevalence of pedestrians and bicyclists. The extension of EmX services along River Road would be welcomed as it will reduce the number of cars traveling through our community. The Oakleigh Meadow Cohousing Community is seeking additional members to buy into their vision of an “intergenerational community of independent households committed to finding purpose and a sense of belonging through working, learning and playing together in a neighborhood designed to make a small and beautiful footprint on the land.”
Another general area of interest surrounds the need for our neighbors to step up to their responsibility of taxing themselves to provide for police patrols and other public safety services. Several members reported experiencing criminal activity on their properties, so there was much agreement for additional police services.
Other various noteworthy ideas were shared: The wish for a more passionate and active creative community, a book group, sign language classes, fences for pit bulls, no Coal Trains traveling on the western border of River Road, no ivy in the cottonwood grove along the bike path, and that everyone participating in tonight‘s event would remain active with RRCO throughout the year.
Last but not least, one person wished that people would resist making speeches!
Carleen Reilly, RRCO Co-Chair
riverroadcommunityorganization@gmail.com

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JC 12.12.12 safety tips pic IMG_7495 (2)

Attention to prevention

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

JC 12.12.12 safety tips pic IMG_7495 (2)

Members of the Junction City Police Department sponsored a Nov. 15 community meeting at the high school where crime prevention basics were discussed to reduce the chances of citizens becoming victims.

JC police officers offer tips to deter crime

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune
JUNCTION CITY – JC Police Department officers provided the following information at a Nov. 15 community meeting to assist local residents in taking action to avoid becoming victims of crime.
A criminal needs three elements to make a crime successful: desire, ability and opportunity. Not much can be done about desire and ability, but “the one thing we can do something about is to try to limit the opportunities,” said Officer Brian Paterson.
Opportunities can be limited with some basic knowledge about doors, windows, alarms and safety lights.
“Most criminals enter through unlocked or weak doors and windows,” Officer Ken Jackson said, so always secure doors and windows by ensuring they are locked. A solid door with a peep hole is preferred to a hollow door, and a deadbolt is the preferred lock.
When installing a deadbolt onto a door, Paterson said, “One thing a lot of people don’t think about is the strike plate.” A bolt action goes into the strike plate on the door frame, which holds the bolt in place. During strike plate installation, use 3-inch screws, since longer screws bypass the ornamental door frame and screw into the house itself.
With sliding glass doors and windows, “Make sure everything is installed properly and can’t be lifted off the track,” Jackson said.
Also, avoid hiding spare house keys outside in obvious places, like under a flower pot near the door. Avoid leaving door remotes in obvious places as well. When moving into a new residence, be sure to rekey a house lock with a new key.
To secure double-hung windows, use a stick or purchase a pin from the hardware store. A stick can also be used to secure sliding glass doors and windows. Check the hardware store for security devices for doors and windows as well.
Garage doors are also an easy point of entry, as people don’t always lock their doors. Also, thieves can disengage a safety release on a garage door with a wire coat hanger. Paterson said a zip tie will prevent that, with directions available on the Internet. Also, when leaving for long periods of time, place a padlock on the door track.
The officers stressed the importance of security lights as a deterrent to crime, as criminals avoid lit areas. Jackson reminded folks to make lights difficult to access, so criminals can’t unscrew the bulbs. Motion lights and timers are also useful tools for crime prevention.
If a burglar is encountered, Jackson advised to avoid confrontation and call 911 instead, as police officers are trained in confrontation. “Be safe and have our number available,” Jackson said. “We work for you – we are your police department.”
As far as recovering stolen items from places like pawn shops, officers said to place an identification mark on valuables like a driver’s license number with the state. Photographs of valuables will also assist in identification and for insurance purposes.
“The key to security is summed up in one word: vigilance,” Paterson said, so remember to practice the basic steps in crime prevention, like locking doors and windows and turning on lights and alarms, to reduce the chances of becoming a victim.
For more crime prevention information, visit the Internet on sites like thecrimepreventionwebsite.com or call the JC Police Department at 541.998.1245.

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ALL 12.12.12 Halsey-OriginalDepot (2)

Halsey City Hall Opens After 14-year Project

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

ALL 12.12.12 Halsey RemodeledDepot (2)ALL 12.12.12 Halsey-OriginalDepot (2)

In 1998, Smith Seed gave the historical train depot building to the City of Halsey before it was moved in 2000 to the northwest corner of Highway 99E and American Drive. The City’s original plans called for a community center on the first floor with city hall offices, council chambers, and a small museum upstairs in the train depot. Since then, progress proceeded slowly as grants and donations were received by the City, but the building mostly remained empty and waited for completion for more than a decade.
In 2008 the Mayor and City Council re-visited the project and decided to actively pursue completion of the building. With some limited funding available, the City Administrator (Judy Cleeton) was able to obtain donations of labor and materials. A retired general contractor donated many hours of labor while other community members donated time as needed. The City of Harrisburg also provided assistance by trading an employee who specializes in construction projects for a Halsey Public Works employee, who then in turn worked in Harrisburg.
The official ribbon cutting ceremony was Saturday and the building is available for rent by the public for meetings, classes, family gatherings and other events.
Mayor Cline said, “As one of the original supporters of this project I am so gratified that our vision is now realized. This wonderful building embodies the spirit of the City of Halsey, combining memories of its past and its view to the future. We wanted to build a space for residents to gather and a city hall they could be proud of. I came on as mayor in 2008 with the intent to see this project finished and as I leave I am so very proud of what the city, government, staff, and the community have accomplished. I believe that this partnership will continue to lead the city in the years to come”.
You can contact Halsey City Hall at 541-369-2522 for more information.

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Lief

$14K Raised at Life for Lief Benefit

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

MONROE – The Life for Lief Benefit Dinner & Auction raised approximately $14,000 when it was held at Monroe High School on December 8th.  Lief is a 9-year-old boy with severe autism and is currently in Stanford Children‘s Hospital with a LVAD awaiting a heart transplant. His parents are Cyrus Parsons & Sunshine Bodey, his brother Sage, grandparents are Andy & Patty Parsons,  and Jackie & Mike Bodey. Tiffany Mamalove is spearheading and running fundraising events in the Eugene area including their tree lot, Great Mist Trees, on the corner of 28th & Friendly.  All proceeds go to the Life for Lief benefit.  Donations can be made through Paypal to homeautismhelp@yahoo.com, donate to the account setup at Sterling Savings Bank under Life for Lief, or checks can be mailed to: Life for Lief,  PO Box 610, Monroe, OR 97456
A tribute to Lief Lief

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Safety and responsibility

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

School district committee looks at proposals for campus upgrades

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At a Dec. 10 JC School District Facility Steering Committee meeting, facilitator Matt Hastie (left) and architects Trace Ward (center) and Jonathan Price presented several proposals to upgrade the four district schools.

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune News

JUNCTION CITY – With student safety and fiscal responsibility in mind, the school district’s Facility Steering Committee continued its visioning and facilitation process to plan improvements at the four district schools.
The committee, made up of 18 individuals representing a diverse cross section of the community, met with representatives from gLAs Architects at a Dec. 10 meeting to discuss potential upgrades. Using results from a community survey along with committee and district staff recommendations, the architects presented several proposals for the future.
The proposed options are based on different dollar amounts the community might support, depending on the community’s priorities for school facilities. Proposals reflected entire school replacements as well as repairs and spot replacements.
A complete replacement of Laurel, the oldest school in the district, is estimated at $22.7 million. High school replacement would be considerably higher, so architectural consultants suggested that the high school master plan be completed in two or more phases over time.
“Once we have the community priorities, then we can nail down the dollar amount that we would maybe go after,” with possibly a 15 or 20 year bond, said committee member Linda Jackson. Several bonds in succession may be needed.
But before a bond is considered, the school district board of directors wants to be certain that a bond is something the community wants, so public outreach will be important during the coming months. An opinion poll is also planned.
The following preliminary improvement packages were proposed by architects.
The most ambitious option estimated a $2.01 increase in tax rate per $1,000 of assessed property value, yielding about $33 million.
This plan assumes full Laurel replacement with meaningful improvements at other schools such as heating, lighting and ventilation system upgrades; high school grandstand improvements, west wing gym bleachers and locker upgrades; a covered breezeway at Territorial; and a master plan for future high school improvements.
An intermediate alternative looked at a $1.56 tax rate increase yielding about $26 million. It proposed a full Laurel replacement with modest improvements at the other schools.
Another option proposed a $1.39 tax increase bringing in $22 million, with only partial replacements at Laurel of the cafeteria, gym and media center. Fewer improvements would occur at other schools.
The least expensive plan suggested an 81 cents tax increase yielding $13 million that would include a partial Laurel replacement with modest improvements at other schools.
Committee members looked at mixing and matching different improvement ideas. The goal of the next two meetings will be to refine and discuss future options before reviewing them with the community. The next meeting is planned for January.
To provide the committee with suggestions, visit the online facility community survey available on the school district website at www.junctioncity.k12.or.us. To obtain a hardcopy of the survey, contact the school district office at 541.998.6311.

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Looking For Answers

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

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Photo by Vera Westbrook
Lane County Commissioner Jay Bozievich attends town hall meetings throughout the county to inform residents about the state of the public safety system. At this Dec. 6 Santa Clara meeting, he is seeking opinions from county residents about preferred services.

Commissioner holds town hall meetings countywide

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune News

Lane County – County officials are reaching out to inform county residents about the current state of the public safety system while seeking solutions to increase the budget.
Commissioner Jay Bozievich recently paid a visit to county residents through town hall meetings held in Junction City, Santa Clara, Veneta and Florence with the following information.
In Santa Clara on Dec. 6, Bozievich reported on the consequences of a meager public safety budget. He particularly noted the Nov. 29 closure of 35 county jail beds, when two of 30 inmates released were arrested within a day for bank robbery and unlawful entry and theft; the bank robber was arrested within one hour of his release.
Bozievich explained the events leading to the early release of such dangerous criminals.
“Our overall budget is $482 million, and that is down almost exactly $100 million from the previous fiscal year,” he said.
Reasons for the lower budget include timber revenue losses and county property taxes going flat. “We are not seeing growth in property taxes,” Bozievich said, with 20 percent of properties having decreased in assessed value this year. The base tax rate is also one of the lowest in the state at a permanent $1.28 per 1,000 of assessed property value.
Federal grants and reimbursements have also been reduced. In response, the public safety system has made the following reductions.
“We have cut every extraneous service we can,” Bozievich said.
In July, 96 jail beds were closed with another 35 beds closed a few weeks ago. The national average in jail beds for offenders serving less than a year is 2.7 beds per 1,000 people. The Oregon statewide average is 1.78 beds per 1,000. Lane County is down to 0.34 beds per 1,000.
Patrols are also taking a hit. At one time the county had 99 deputies on patrol down to 16 deputies patrolling 16 to 18 hours a day. “There are times in rural Lane County when there is nobody patrolling our streets and we have to either pull somebody out of their home or off some other duties to respond to a call,” he said.
Misdemeanor supervisors—for sex offenders and  domestic violence—were also eliminated from parole and probation. The district attorney’s office also cut 11 prosecutors, with about 25 percent of felony arrests not filed because of a lack of staff. About 6,000 people will be released this year, who normally wouldn’t be released.
Bozievich looked at some fiscal solutions.
“For us to rebuild our public safety system to just match the Oregon average, would take about $50 million,” he said.
Other solutions included making the public safety system a permanent service district. Contracting out  was also a possibility, but not all services can be privatized such as police officers and district attorneys.
“Re-opening our forests is part of the solution, but it’s not going to take us back to an adequate public safety system,” he said, as it would take three to five years before any revenue is seen.
The quickest and easiest way to raise money would be through a serial levy for a few years, where a specific amount of money, such as 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value, would go toward a particular service, such as increasing jail beds. But a serial levy is only a temporary solution.
“We haven’t determined a long-term fix yet,” Bozievich said, but in the meantime, county officials will be working with officials in Salem and the federal system to find a long-term solution.
Please share ideas to help improve the public safety system with Commissioner Jay Bozievich at 541.682.4203 or by email at Jay.Bozievich@co.lane.or.us.

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Shopping with the Cops

Shopping with the Cops

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

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Photos by Kyle Krenik
On left, JCPD Officer Brian Patterson helps a child select presents for her family; Junction City Police officers and the cadre of children who made the trip to a large department store in patrol cars and are preparing to ‘hit the aisles.’; Reserve Officer Andy King helps a young boy puruse items for his sibling.

The 14th annual ‘Shop with a Cop’ program is continuing to be a success. It began in 1999 when Dr. Bullock of Junction City, and his staff, decided that in leiu of a Christmas party they would donate the money to allow kids to shop for their family. They also felt that it was important for the kids to view cops in a positive light. One hundred dollars was available for each child this year. Go To YourTribuneNews.com to watch a Video Clip of this years JCPD Shop With A Cop.

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Looking For Answers

Posted on 20 December 2012 by admin

Commissioner holds town hall meetings countywide

 

By Vera Westbrook
For the Tribune News

Lane County – County officials are reaching out to inform county residents about the current state of the public safety system while seeking solutions to increase the budget.
Commissioner Jay Bozievich recently paid a visit to county residents through town hall meetings held in Junction City, Santa Clara, Veneta and Florence with the following information.
In Santa Clara on Dec. 6, Bozievich reported on the consequences of a meager public safety budget. He particularly noted the Nov. 29 closure of 35 county jail beds, when two of 30 inmates released were arrested within a day for bank robbery and unlawful entry and theft; the bank robber was arrested within one hour of his release.
Bozievich explained the events leading to the early release of such dangerous criminals.
“Our overall budget is $482 million, and that is down almost exactly $100 million from the previous fiscal year,” he said.
Reasons for the lower budget include timber revenue losses and county property taxes going flat. “We are not seeing growth in property taxes,” Bozievich said, with 20 percent of properties having decreased in assessed value this year. The base tax rate is also one of the lowest in the state at a permanent $1.28 per 1,000 of assessed property value.
Federal grants and reimbursements have also been reduced. In response, the public safety system has made the following reductions.
“We have cut every extraneous service we can,” Bozievich said.
In July, 96 jail beds were closed with another 35 beds closed a few weeks ago. The national average in jail beds for offenders serving less than a year is 2.7 beds per 1,000 people. The Oregon statewide average is 1.78 beds per 1,000. Lane County is down to 0.34 beds per 1,000.
Patrols are also taking a hit. At one time the county had 99 deputies on patrol down to 16 deputies patrolling 16 to 18 hours a day. “There are times in rural Lane County when there is nobody patrolling our streets and we have to either pull somebody out of their home or off some other duties to respond to a call,” he said.
Misdemeanor supervisors—for sex offenders and  domestic violence—were also eliminated from parole and probation. The district attorney’s office also cut 11 prosecutors, with about 25 percent of felony arrests not filed because of a lack of staff. About 6,000 people will be released this year, who normally wouldn’t be released.
Bozievich looked at some fiscal solutions.
“For us to rebuild our public safety system to just match the Oregon average, would take about $50 million,” he said.
Other solutions included making the public safety system a permanent service district. Contracting out  was also a possibility, but not all services can be privatized such as police officers and district attorneys.
“Re-opening our forests is part of the solution, but it’s not going to take us back to an adequate public safety system,” he said, as it would take three to five years before any revenue is seen.
The quickest and easiest way to raise money would be through a serial levy for a few years, where a specific amount of money, such as 50 cents per $1,000 of assessed property value, would go toward a particular service, such as increasing jail beds. But a serial levy is only a temporary solution.
“We haven’t determined a long-term fix yet,” Bozievich said, but in the meantime, county officials will be working with officials in Salem and the federal system to find a long-term solution.
Please share ideas to help improve the public safety system with Commissioner Jay Bozievich at 541.682.4203 or by email at Jay.Bozievich@co.lane.or.us.

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On The Street With Steve What Does Christmas Mean?

On The Street With Steve What Does Christmas Mean?

Posted on 17 December 2012 by admin

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Severe weather warning

Severe weather warning

Posted on 17 December 2012 by admin

The Lane County Sheriff’s Office advises resident to stay home tonight and only travel if necessary.  The National Weather Service has issued severe weather warnings for all areas of Lane County in effect until 6 am Monday morning.  Strong damaging winds along the coast will cause high seas, sneaker waves and debris such as logs to be washed on shore.  Keep children away from the surf.  Strong winds may bring down trees, limbs and power lines making travel conditions hazardous.  DO NOT touch downed power lines. If trapped in your car by a downed power line sit tight, do not touch anything until the power line has been cleared of electricity.  Residents should expect intermittent power outages. Blizzard conditions are expected in the Cascades.  DO NOT travel over the passes.  Check ODOT’s Trip check to check for road closures and other severe weather warnings. Please be patient with road closures and do not try to circumvent travel routes by taking alternate routes along poorly maintained lesser traveled forest roads; you may get trapped on the road for several hours until emergency crews arrive.  Lane County Sheriff’s Office Emergency Manager, Linda Cook, says, “This is a good time to hunker down and check your emergency preparedness kits”.

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Holiday Lights Contest!

Holiday Lights Contest starts NOW! CASH PRIZES!

Posted on 13 December 2012 by admin

Holiday Lights Contest!

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aclu

ACLU Comes to Junction City

Posted on 11 December 2012 by admin

Public discussion about Bill of Rights attended by 40 citizens

Thursday, Dec. 6, the ALCU held an open discussion meeting with forty concerned citizens. Ages 14 to 90 discussed the Bill of Rights and how it applies to Americans. The hour and a half roundtable was cordial and thought provoking.
The Tribune News videotaped the event and it will soon be available on www.YourTribuneNews.com.
Those interested should review the tape, consider their own opinions, and then attend the next ACLU meeting with questions. The result should be a greater understanding of the wisdom of our founding fathers.
This publication takes no position, pro or con, with the ACLU or the opinions of those attending.

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