BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'

REGULAR MEETING

September 20, 2006

1:30 p.m.

Commissionersí Conference Room

APPROVED 9/12/2007

 

Commissioner Bill Dwyer presided with Commissioners Bobby Green, Sr., Anna Morrison, Peter Sorenson and Faye Stewart present.County Administrator Bill Van Vactor,Assistant County Counsel Stephen Vorhes and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

 

14. PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

a. PUBLIC HEARING/ORDER 06-9-20-6/In the Matter of Authorizing the Transfer to the City of Oakridge County Owned Real Property Identified as Assessor's Map No. 21-35-16-12, Tax Lots 2600 and 3000 (Located at the Corner of Sanford and High Leah Dr., Oakridge)

 

Jeff Turk, Management Services, reported that the City of Oakridge had requestedthe County transfer to them two parcels of County owned property that were acquired through tax foreclosure.He said the city wants the property to help with drainage.He noted the properties are steep on a hillside on a main drainage way.He said the properties were acquired through tax foreclosure in 1992 and have been offered at Sheriffís sales.He said they havenít sold as they are difficult to develop because of the topography.He indicated the city council had taken action on the matter to request the County transfer the properties to them and they would use it for a public purpose.He explained if the Board approves the transfer, it would occur pursuant to ORS 271-330 that provides for transferring County owned property to other public entities, provided the properties are used for a public purpose for not less than 20 years.He added the statute requires a public hearing be held on the matter before the Board takes action.

 

Turk indicated notice of public hearing was published in The Register-Guard on September 4 and 11.

 

Commissioner Dwyer opened the Public Hearing.There being no one signed up to speak, he closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 06-9-20-6.

 

Morrison MOVED, Stewart SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

b. SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance 8-06/In the Matter of Amending Chapter 7 of Lane Code to Add a Provision Pertaining to Capturing and Killing of a Dog or Cat (LC 7.122) (NBA & PM 8/30/06).

 

Dwyer explained there was a legal memorandum from their attorneys and under the proposed ordinance, no one is allowed to kill a cat or dog under any circumstances unless a reasonable person has the right to defend themselves. He commented that killing feral cats would generally not be allowed under the proposed ordinance, even if LCARA could not respond in a manner the property owner believes to be timely. He read the rule into the record.

 

Sorenson indicated Mike Wellington, LCARA, received a letter from Inga Gibson on August 29 suggesting code changes to their proposed ordinance.He read the proposed changes.He said they added: maintains, captures and also traps and the word harm.He said they added a sentence that made it clear that each animal involved in a violation constitutes a separate offense.He asked if they made the changes today if they would have to have another reading.

 

Marc Kardell, Assistant County Counsel, said he reviewed the language.He believed that if someone captures an animal, it encompasses the word trap. He said causing a death to an animal is already on their books.He indicated the issue with the pest control company was the method they used to kill an animal and it might not qualify as cruelly causing the death of an animal.With regard to harm, Kardell said they had animal abuse and neglect and if they intentionally harm an animal, it is covered under the code.He said if there is more than one animal involved, they currently site it in the code.He suggested having another reading if they are going to be making changes.He said because the words are all encompassed, he didnít think there were significant changes. He thought they should have an additional reading because Suchart and Wellington were not present.

 

Dwyer liked the language the current way they have it, as it was cleaner with regard to intent.

 

Kardell said this was drafted to respond to a particular situation and they already have laws on the book to deal with animal abuse and animal neglect.

 

Dwyer asked which language would give them more strength.

 

Kardell responded that harm could be added if they didnít already have a provision dealing with animal abuse and neglect.He didnít believe it was necessary as they were always able to deal with people who cause pain to animals.He indicated that is what the provision is intended to prohibit.

 

Commissioner Dwyer opened the Public Hearing.

 

Rita Castillo, Springfield, commented if the ordinance was workable, then LCARAwouldnít have had a problem.She thought they needed to change the wording to make it strong enough for them to do something.She said it is easy to misinterpret rabies when they are in a situation where they have to make a snap decision.She said the best cared for animals can sometimes get away. She said if they cannot ascertain if an animal is a pet or not, then the animal shouldnít be killed.

 

Susan McDonald, Eugene, distributed information.She said the authorization issued by the Springfield ODFW office and used by Swanson and condoned by LCARA as official permission to trap and kill the cats in Creswell was invalid.She said that ODFW has no authority over domestic cats.She said they cannot and did not regulate or authorize the taking of domestic cats.She said there is a discrepancy because in Mike Wellingtonís official report, an authorization was provided that this was a legal activity.She said it stated dead wildlife, nothing about cats. She included a letter from the investigator that was condoned by the director saying what Swanson did was practicing veterinarian medicine without a license and they were told to cease and desist.She said they were told that they are not allowed to refer to what was done as euthanasia.She indicated the people involved were not trained properly.She thought the language the ordinance has is not adequate.

 

Lillian Knight stated she is a cat person and has taken in feral cats.

 

Anita Devaney, Eugene, stated she was in favor of making changes.She commented that domestic cats in her neighborhood are being captured.She said that cats roam and it is hard to determine if a cat is domestic or feral.She thought the ordinance should be reworded for humane purposes in showing compassion.She also thought harm should be put in the ordinance.

 

Ron Knight commented that any wording to make the ordinance more specific or direct would be a plus.

 

Katherine Ford, Eugene, said if the code as written is enough to stop the method of extermination, then she would be in agreement to pass it as it is.She thought the Board needed to handle this properly.

 

David Calderwood,Eugene, supported the ordinance.He thought if they took a vote of the kennel clubs that they would support it.He supported the words traps and harms.††

 

Lisa Fisher, Eugene, is in support of changing the code to make it stricter.She thought that harming and trapping should be enforced in the code.

 

Diana Robertson, Eugene, represented SARA.She didnít know why LCARA couldnít prosecute under the cruelty laws with regard to the cats in Creswell.She encouraged the Board to consider adding ďtrappingĒ and ďharm.Ē

 

John Archer, Junction City, supported the ordinance but he wanted the changes that Sorenson brought up.He commented that most owners donít know when an animal is sick.He said they need strength in the ordinance. He wondered why the ordinance wasnít used before.

 

Scott Bartlett, Eugene, commented that the ordinance was good and Sorensonís amendments make it better.He said this was a symptom of an overpopulation crisis with cats.

 

Dwyer wanted the right to private action reviewed for the ordinance.He said it allows for someone other than the government to bring action for a violation of the law. He thought they also needed to put in prevailing attorney fees.

 

Sorenson wanted to change the policy.He thought they should have a private right of action.He wanted to make it clear that harming animals is against the law in Lane County.He wanted to bring this back for another reading, adding the private right of action where someone gives notice to the County.He said if the County doesnít take an action, then they could try to go to court.

 

Kardell said they have the private party right to initiate an action in their code dealing with noise enforcement.

 

Dwyer wanted Kardell to review the right to private action to include the wording as outlined by Sorenson in terms of the intent to harm and see what they could do about the clarity in the ordinance.He said they will have another reading.

 

Van Vactor recommended rolling this to a work session where they could work on specific language.

 

Sorenson wanted to do what was suggested by adding the language of ďtrapsĒ and ďharmĒ and what constitutes a violation.He didnít want the private right of action but direct staff to come back to propose that language because they will see more needs in Lane County government to see the private right of action in a lot of areas.

 

MOTION:to approve a Second Reading and Setting a Third Reading and Deliberation on Ordinance 8-06 for September 27, 2006.

 

Sorenson MOVED, Green SECONDED.

 

Kardell had a concern adding that each one is a separate violation.†† He thought it detracts from the clarity they had from the other animal control ordinances where they donít have the language.He said it seems to apply if they said it in one and not in the other, then in the others they couldnít act when they are separate animals.He thought putting it on now would make animal abuse cases more difficult to argue if there are separate charges against different animals, that it shouldnít all be treated as one.

 

Stewart thought it would be more prudent to approve the ordinance the way it is, give direction to amend it in the future as they can to add Sorensonís wording and the right of action so there is something on the books starting today instead of waiting before they act.

 

Sorenson said adding the language would not slow it down; it would be done within a month..He didnít want to tie it to the private right of action.He said they have to make it clear it is against the policy of Lane County to harm an animal.

 

Dwyer didnít believe the three words were substantive changes.

 

Green wanted to either take action today or slow the process down so it would withstand a legal challenge.

 

Kardell didnít believe the changes were substantive but because Suchart and Wellington werenít able to attend the meeting, they might feel the changes were substantive.

 

Sorenson wanted to roll this for a week and continue deliberations.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

c. PUBLIC HEARING/ORDER 06-9-20-7/In the Matter of Considering a Ballot Measure 37 Claim and Deciding Whether to Modify, Remove or Not Apply Restrictive Land Use Regulations in Lieu of Providing Just Compensation (PA 06-5959, Green).

 

Kent Howe, Land Management, reported this is a five acre property on Legal Lane, offParsons Creek Road, west of Marcola.He noted the property was acquired in 1973 and at that time it was unzoned.He said it is currently zoned rural residential with a five acre minimum land division.He said the claimant wants to divide the property into lots less than five acres in size, each with a dwelling.He said the applicant had submitted listings from the Multiple Listing Service as their value reduction analysis.He indicated they acquiredthe property in 1973 and in 1992 transferred it through a living trust that is revocable.He noted the name of the trust is Norman and Frieda as the trustees and the trust is not considered a new owner.He said it appears to be a valid claim.

 

Commissioner Dwyer opened the Public Hearing.

 

Norman Green, Springfield, wanted to see if things were clear as to the circumstances.He said it was hard to utilize a small five acre tract because it has a live stream and a riparian zone.He commented that five acres was too much to do single handedly and it would be better by dividing it and putting a second home site on it.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Dwyer closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 06-9-20-7.

 

Green MOVED, Stewart SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

d. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 06-9-20-4/In the Matter of Considering a Ballot Measure 37 Claim and Deciding Whether to Modify, Remove or Not Apply Restrictive Land Use Regulations in Lieu of Providing Just Compensation (PA 06-5965, Braun).

 

Howe explained this was a four acre piece of property on Coburg Bottom Loop Road, one-half mile west of Coburg.He said the property was acquired in 1971 and at that time it was zoned AGT, a minimum division of one acre.He said the property is currently zoned rural residential and has a two acre minimum lot size.He said the applicant wants to divide the property into lots less than two acres, each with a dwelling.He stated the applicant had not submitted an appraisal but a real estate brokersí opinion about the reduction of value in the amount of $220,000.He indicated the County Administrator waived the requirement for an appraisal.

 

Howe said the issue is the conveying of interest to the Braun Family Trust in 1999 and back to the current owners in 2005.He said the trust formation document was not provided until today.He said they need to review the trust so it doesnít create a new owner.He added if it does not, it appeared they have a valid claim.

 

Vorhes said his review of the trust documents was like the revocable living trust with the previous case.He needed to confirm how the conveyance was handled

 

Commissioner Dwyer opened the Public Hearing.

 

Carl Mueller stated he is the agent for the applicant.He said at the time he submitted the application, Mr. Braun was not able to locate that document.He said Braun found it and took it to Land Management.He said when they submitted their application, they thought all the evidence was there, that the trust was revocable even without the document.He provided the bargain and sales deed to the Braun Family.He indicated Oregon had adopted the Uniform Trust Code to provide the assumption that any trust is revocable.He added there was a second bargain and sale deed conveying the property to the Brauns as husband and wife, grantees (Exhibit A).He said they went forward even though at that time they couldnít find the trust instrument.He said all evidence submitted indicates the trust was revocable.He said there was also the title report stating it is to Roberta J. Braun and Cassimer J. Braun, as husband and wife.

 

Peter Gutoski, Coburg, stated he has a farm adjoining the Braun farm.He wanted to see the final document before the Board made a decision.He didnít think the figures on the property added up.He didnít see where the property had lost value over the past 30 years.He didnít want to see the property qualify for a Measure 37 waiver.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Dwyer closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 06-9-20-4.

 

Morrison MOVED, Stewart SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

e. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 06-9-20-5/In the Matter of Considering a Ballot Measure 37 Claim and Deciding Whether to Modify, Remove or Not Apply Restrictive Land Use Regulations in Lieu of Providing Just Compensation (PA 06-6028, Pattison).

 

Howe explained this was a 43-acre property located on Deadwood Creek Road, ten miles north of Deadwood.He said a portion of the property Jessie Pattison acquired was in 1972 with the remainder of the property acquired in 1973.He said at both acquisitions the properties were unzoned.He indicated there was no evidence that identifies when Elaine acquired an interest in the property.He noted currently the property is zoned impacted forest land, F2 with an 80 acre minimum.He said they want to divide the lot to less than 80 acres with a dwelling.He said the claimant has provided an appraisal and deeds.He stated it seems to be a valid claim for Jessie Pattison.

 

Commissioner Dwyer opened the Public Hearing.

 

Nancy Nichols, Deadwood, stated she received no notice.She said the application was incomplete.She thought what was needed was a full title report showing continuous ownership and a map that shows what property is covered by the rule from August 30, 1972 and what is covered on August 16, 1973.She thought the center would be booked all summer with weddings, seminars, retreats and conventions.She indicated this development is four miles from a paved two-lane road.She commented that the road doesnít meet the current safety standard for a private road serving two residences.She noted that some spots donít meet the width requirements for a driveway access.She noted that accidents were common with most being low speed fender benders.She commented that this proposal affects everyone who counts on the road for access.She asked if the Board approves the application to add a requirement that the planning department notify everyone who relies on the gravel road for access.She noted the appraiser didnít provide comparable sale value for a coast range resort.She said they donít have an appraisal yet.She commented that Lane County would be better off requiring a real appraisal and paying the Pattisons for their real loss.She thought in the long run it would be less than the extra road maintenance and Sheriff costs.†† She said once they have an application, she asked the Board to notify everyone who would be affected by the increase of traffic.

 

There being no one further signed up to speak, Commissioner Dwyer closed the Public Hearing.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 06-9-20-5.

 

Stewart MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 4-1 (Sorenson dissenting).

 

16. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

None.

 

17. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD

 

None.

 

18. OTHER BUSINESS

 

None.

 

There being no further business, Commissioner Bill Dwyer adjourned the meeting at 4:30 p.m.

 

Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary