BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
January 3, 2007
Commissioners' Conference Room
Commissioner Faye Stewart presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bill Fleenor, Bobby Green, Sr., and Peter Sorenson present.† County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA
Stewart stated in agenda setting they discussed having a meeting on January 16.† He asked the Board to check their calendars and get back with him if that date didnít work.
2. PUBLIC COMMENTS
Lauri Segel, Eugene, spoke on the Measure 37 staff report.† She thought the staffís proposal was dismissive of the need to address the concerns of neighbors.† She commented that before the onslaught of Measure 37 claims before December 4, that between September 1 and the end of December, staff brought only 17 Ballot Measure 37 claims before the Board.† She thought staff needed to take responsibility and be more accountable for hearing Measure 37 claims.† She thought the proposal to stop recording the adopting orders should not be considered.† She commented that those adopted orders are helpful elements for neighbors and her organization to keep track of the 60 day appeal period and for purposes of comparing what the County ordinance says in comparison to the stateís adopting order.† She stated that notice has to be continued, as that engages the neighbors to come and speak up for their neighborhood.† With regard to public hearings, she supported batching five to ten claims at a time on a particular day as a mechanism to save time and money.† She said on the Countyís website there needed to be a field for date received, date deemed complete or date applicant notified of incomplete.† She recommended that information be posted.
Sorenson asked if the filing fees for the Measure 37 claims accommodated the 12.5 hours it takes to review a claim.† He noted the memo indicated they didnít have enough money or people.† He asked Segel what the appropriate level should be to give adequate notice to people who might be affected.
Segel commented if staff was spending 12.5 hours per claim then the applicant didnít have a high enough burden of proof to provide adequate information.† She thought if the applicants were providing the information, they needed to have more than one person processing claims.† She thought they could possibly get another staff person paid for by video lottery money to address Measure 37 claims.† She thought the ordinance could require the applicant to provide enough information that it doesnít require 12.5 hours of staff time.
Dwyer responded the options the Board has are limited.† He commented that the claims might affect a neighborís wells or affect something else which is not pertinent to the application.† He agreed that claimants should provide more information so they donít spend so much time on a claim.† He suggested charging the costs for Measure 37 like a lot of record.† He thought instead of having hearings that are irrelevant to the claim, that they have a sign up sheet that gives people standing by signing a sheet. †
Segel wasnít sure that giving people the opportunity to sign up established what was needed to be in the record as a neighbor in order to have standing in circuit court for a Measure 37 claim.
Dwyer wanted to develop a sign up sheet for notice rights so it doesnít limit people who are within certain parameters, but includes the whole neighborhood.
Fleenor commented that Measure 37 gives them a narrow window to determine whether the applicantsí claim is valid.† He noted the public testimony he had read was not related to Measure 37, but to the development afterwards.† He concurred with Dwyer about having a public sign up sheet that would allow them to have standing.† He didnít want to put any unfair burden on the applicants.† He said they need to be fair and balanced.† He said whatever they could do to enhance the application or the opposition is what they should be doing as a Board.
3. EMERGENCY BUSINESS
4. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE
Sorenson commented that yesterdayís State of the County was a good celebration.
Fleenor echoed Sorensonís comments.† He stated his wife thought Greenís comments were the highlight of the session.
5. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
6. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION
Van Vactor announced they will kick off the budget next Monday in the Carmichael Room at 1:30 p.m.† He said they will be producing two budgets.† He noted on January 30 and February 5 the Management Team will be working on the ďdoomsday budgetĒ where they start with a zero-based budget and build it up.† He said at this point they donít know which budget will be presented as the proposed budget.† He indicated they were waiting to see what happens with Congress.
Dwyer wanted to color code services when they review the services.† He wanted different colors for mandated services, for federal funds, or leveraged funds.†† He said if a program is virtually free to Lane County and is financed by someone else, they should keep the service.† ††
7. PUBLIC WORKS
a. REPORT BACK/Regarding the Processing of Measure 37 Claims. †
Kent Howe, Land Management, stated that staff was supportive of the ordinance they have in place and the way they had been processing Measure 37 claims up to this point.† He said they are at the point where they are overwhelmed with the processing issue.† He said they want to look at changes they could make that would help them get through and meet the timing requirements of the Measure 37 statute.
Howe reported that Lane County received 395 claims and up through the past two years had processed about 75, leaving about 320.† He indicated they have until the end of May to hear the claims.† He thought there could be 65 claims per month.††† He didnít think they could staff up adequately.† He thought they needed to make procedural changes in the way they process Measure 37 claims.† He said they do a completeness review and staff analysis. †He added they send out notice that takes up staff time.† He noted they have public hearings but they are not required.† He said the Board needs to determine what amount of public participation is appropriate for the Measure 37 process. He noted the only topics that could be discussed with Measure 37 claims are for the current owner and date of acquisition.
Dwyer asked how they could expedite the process to meet their statutory obligation so it wouldnít require a public hearing--but allow for people who are being impacted by Measure 37 to have legal standing in subsequent matters.† He wanted people who signed up on a sign up sheet to have standing no matter where they live.† He said the people within the parameter of development will be notified pursuant to the development code. †
Vorhes wasnít sure signing a piece of paper gives someone legal standing, he thought they may have to make additional factual assertions for a judicial reviewing body to decide that there is standing.† He indicated that standing is not defined in Measure 37. †He said they could set up a way of processing applications for development approval.† He said it could be a way to bring in people who have signed up in the previous proceeding on Measure 37 and give them a right of the notice of the proceeding.† He thought they could do something internally for developing applications to connect people who had testified in Measure 37 cases.† He said if people were notified and appeared at the Board on Measure 37 hearings, those names will move to a list of people who will be notified when development applications come that involve the same property.
Dwyer asked how they would expedite the cases to meet the legal requirements and not have the public feel slighted.† †
Vorhes indicated the Board had previously taken steps to direct people who came and testified and signed up for Measure 37, to get notice of the subsequent development approval.† He added they will have the opportunity at that point to take whatever steps they want to take to participate in the local proceeding and establish their ability to take it to another reviewing body.
Dwyer wanted to advertise what the process is so they donít feel slighted when there is a lack of notice.
Sorenson commented that in some situations the public wants to be notified.† He wanted to give them a form to fill out so a record could be kept.† He didnít think they needed to have public hearing to have them testify.† He thought batching the public hearings where they have ten hearings at a time and let people come in to testify would not require that much work. †
Vorhes said within the County process they could establish a basis for standing, but in the judicial system the answer wasnít as clear.† He thought there were ways to address how to manage the cases.† He added there was already a mechanism for linking Measure 37 claimant hearings and interest to development.† He said the Board could make known to people the opportunity for connecting their interest in a Measure 37 claim or a concern about what happens later.† Vorhes didnít think it would always survive if the Board made a call on whether a court would conclude there is standing.
Howe indicated that with Measure 37 claims, it is not just a public hearing but there is a notice requirement.† He said the Board had heard testimony that wasnít really relevant for Measure 37 but it would be for the land use proceeding.† He said besides the public hearing process would be the notice requirements.† He said they are noticing 1500 feet instead of 750 feet.† He stated they could have more of a legislative notice in the newspaper, instead of properties within a certain distance.† He said that once a decision is made, they are sending the notice of the adopted order to the people who had participated.† He thought they could delete the notice requirement completely. He noted some counties donít do public hearings or notice.† He said they could stick with the current process, they could do batch processing of the hearings, or do them more like a consent calendar action that is not with a public hearing.
Van Vactor recalled that Lauri Segel was concerned Land Management was not recording the board orders.† He asked if that was part of the staff recommendation.
Howe responded that wasnít part of the recommendation.
Fleenor asked of all of the Measure 37 claims, how many were denied as a result of a development challenge.
Howe responded none had made an application for development.
Vorhes said with regard to the measure analysis, development concerns had not been a basis for this Board to say they donít meet the test under Measure 37.
Green asked what the current work plan was for Land Management.† He said as they discuss budget reductions, Land Management is a fee based operation.† He wanted to look at what was costing them money.† He said they are receiving application fees for Measure 37 claims and that is generating money.† He wanted to see where things could be going† He liked the idea of combining the hearings.† He said they would need to demonstrate efficiencies they would gain from changing the notice requirements.
Jeff Towery, Land Management, said with redirecting staff, it would be for staff who was working on long range planning activities. He indicated he would consider redirecting staff from that.† He added they have three other staff involved in long range planning activities.† He said they also have other staff who are involved in current planning activities.† He asked if they should pull people from other planning applications.
Green wanted to know some of the efficiencies gained by a different noticing process.
Towery explained that noticing is a continuum.† He said they could either give no notice or mail notices to everyone in Lane County.† He said they are mailing individual† notices to properties within 1500 feet.† He said the question before the Board was whether they wanted to continue that activity.† He said they could go back to 750 feet like they do for other land use proceedings.† He indicated the other notice possibility was a blanket notice in the newspaper.† He said they could identify a geographic region and do a notice in Florence, Mapleton, Dunes City and The Register Guard and print a map where the claims are. He commented that the more individual directed mailings they do, the more staff time is consumed.† He said currently they are taking 25 percent of an office assistantís time in doing notice.
Dwyer asked how much they charge for the lot of record.† He said they have a process in place that they pay so much for time expended. †He commented that 12.5 hours for some of the claims seemed excessive.† He wanted a minimum standard of what is required and if they are under the standard, they get a refund and if it is above the standard, they receive a bill.† He wanted it to be self-supporting.
Kent asked if they wanted to process 60 claims per month until May.
Vorhes explained with the fee and the charge, the Board has the authority in Lane Manual to charge for the cost of processing any of the claims that came in. †
Sorenson asked how much they were charging for Measure 37 claims.
Towery said $850. †
Howe explained it was $750 for the processing of the application and $100 for notice--a total of $850.
Vorhes reiterated there is language in Lane Manual charging the applicant for the cost of processing the application.
Sorenson didnít think it was fair for the taxpayers to subsidize Measure 37 claims.† He said if the statute they passed requires a public hearing, then they could speed them up.† He wanted to have a form asking people what they were going to be testifying on.† He commented that Land Management knows it costs more than the $850 for each claim.† He thought they should be paid the fair market value on what it is costing the department and make sure the applicants were paying their fair share.
Towery said they are not pulling staff from fee based activities to process Measure 37 claims.† He said the staff they are using is long range planning staff.† He said the fees they gathered from Measure 37 claims have come close to the staff time it requires to pay for them.† He said he has the money but not a pool of five people to process the claim, given the current process.
Vorhes indicated there could be some options that might require changing Lane Code.† He said there were also options that donít necessitate changing the way they manage the Measure 37 claims and how they come to the Board. †
Stewart asked if there were enough staff to do 20 claims per week so within five months they would have it done.† He asked if they could contract out with someone who could give notice.† He asked how they could hear all of the claims.† †
Towery said the major components of the process will allow them to refine the financial analysis to look at the work plan and the existing staff.† He said they could refine the process and do more analysis on staff and county counsel time. He didnít want to make it a financial decision for the Board on costs to process the claims.† †
Green asked if there was a way they could save money with public hearings.
Howe agreed with having a form developed that listed the owner, property location, distance to the claim property and the issues of public health and safety. He thought instead of people coming in testifying, they would fill the form out, ahead of time and it could be carried into the land use proceeding.
Green noted in other counties they were treating Measure 37 claims without public hearings, more like executive sessions.
Towery indicated the state doesnít hold Measure 37 hearings either.
Green favored having batch hearings and a form that would expedite the time.† He still wanted the staff analysis.† He said they do need to give the public an opportunity to comment.
Dwyer agreed the form was a good idea.† He suggested having a form in duplicate so they have a copy for their records. He thought it would give people more standing.† He thought they should review how they do legal lots and develop what the average is.† He agreed to batching the claims together for a hearing.† He commented when they approve something in a block, they might be subject to making an error.
Sorenson thought they should develop a surcharge methodology that encompasses the value the person has applied for, so the bigger claim in dollars requires payment.† He thought it should be balanced as to how long it takes to process a claim.† He thought taking away from long range planning and the responsibilities that Lane County has to provide for ongoing planning is robbing a program to subsidize Measure 37.† He said that they should be up front with the public that there is a tremendous drain on the resources of Lane County.† He asked whether Land Management would be willing to meet with the advocates for the claimants.† He also wanted them to meet with Jim Just and Lauri Siegel to get ideas about the fees, and the structure of the public involvement that will meet the objections of the different people who are routinely involved. †
Fleenor commented that the more they compound Land Managementís responsibilities, the worse it would get.† He said they are running up against a deadline.
Howe reiterated that the Board would like them to keep the notice they had been doing at 1500 feet, as opposed to a newspaper ad.† He said the Board wants to do a more batch processing public hearing process and afford people the opportunity to answer questions on a form.
Towery commented they were talking about the people who want to engage in the public hearing process to have a clear expectation about the narrow fields of issues the Board is able to address.† He wanted the opportunity to have an up front effort to set responsible expectations and to put in any testimony or feedback with the Measure 37 statute.† He noted the land use development aspect and all of the issues for subsequent development are not part of this initial decision of the Board.
Green commented they wanted to formalize something they are already doing.† He indicated that last year the chair made the preamble before the hearing.† He thought if they got something in advance that lets them know what they can talk about it, could make a difference in who shows up.† He also thought if they could fill out a form and send it back to Land Management, they might not need to have a hearing.† He said even after it was explained to them about the health and safety items, they still mention it in their public hearing.† He stated they canít stop them from coming but they could restrict them in limiting the discussions.
Fleenor reiterated that Sorenson and Dwyer wanted to develop a data base for those individuals who would have a development concern later on.† He thought it should be part of the public process.
Stewart indicated there had been discussion about devoting Tuesdays to Measure 37 claims.† He wanted to commit to Tuesdays to meet the timeline.† He wanted the meetings held in Harris Hall with batch hearings.† He said there would be forms that are sent out with the notice and at the hearing that people could fill out. ††So when people are discussing things that are not relevant to the hearing, he could direct them to fill out the form.† The comments would be collected and kept for the appropriate time when and if a development takes place.† He added there will be a link for this on the Countyís website.
Dwyer wanted to add a few fields to the notice requirements that mentioned the date applied and the status of claim.
Stewart stated there needed to be a review of the cost of process.† He said they would charge a starting fee and if takes less time, they would get a rebate and if takes more time, they would send a bill based on the timeline.† He thought the fees should be from this day forward, not retroactive.
Dwyer wanted to have the fees like a lot of record for Measure 37 claims.† He didnít want it to be prospective as it isnít fair to the other people.† He wanted work that hadnít been done or work that was subsidized by the departments to be recovered.† He wanted full cost recovery and didnít want long range planning that is economic development subsidizing Measure 37.
Vorhes stated he wanted to have a conversation about that in Executive Session if that comes up.† He said they could have a conversation with the county administrator about figuring out how much more it costs for claims they have processed or how much more it might costs for claims waiting to be processed and whether letters would sent to the claimants asking them to pay the fee.† He said there could be risks.
Sorenson said they need to collect appropriate fees and they already built into the application schedule they could charge additional money. He didnít want to minimize public involvement or neighbor concerns because they donít have enough time or money.
Green recalled that Towery said Land Management had enough money, but he doesnít have the staff to do the work.† He thought the fees they have are fine.† He said they could review their fees against what other counties are charging around the state.† He commented that by adding a surcharge, it takes away from the work they just did.† He stated there is a true cost for service and that is what they should be charging.
Fleenor didnít want to retroactively increase the charges.† He said as they advance with post Measure 37 filing date deadlines, they might want to reassess the costs so they would have a realistic cost-based system.
Stewart wanted to reassess costs and make an adjustment in the future. †
Van Vactor asked when claims would start coming.
Howe said he hoped to have those started in February.† He wanted to do the ones in January that were before those approaching the 180 day timeframe.† He thought there would be about 24 claims in the month of January.† In February they would start with 60 hearings per month. †
8. CONSENT CALENDAR
BEGINNING OF CONSENT CALENDAR * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
A. Approval of Minutes:† None.
B. County Administration
1) ORDER 07-1-3-1/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Florence Justice Court Through January 8, 2008.
2) ORDER 07-1-3-2/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Central Lane Justice Court Through January 8, 2008.
3) ORDER 07-1-3-3/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Oakridge Justice Court Through January 8, 2008.
C. County Counsel
1) ORDER 07-1-3-4/In the Matter of Selecting Newspapers to Publish Ballots, Monthly Statement of Expenditures, Personal Property Tax Warrants, and Notices of Real Property Tax Foreclosures.
D. Public Safety
1) ORDER 07-1-3-5/In the Matter of Approving Execution of Intergovernmental Agreement Between Eugene Water & Electric Board, McKenzie Fire Department and Lane County for Joint Use of Mt. Hagan Communication Site to Generate Revenue in the Amount of $7,500.
E. Public Works
1) ORDER 07-1-3-6/In the Matter of Appointing a Five Member Citizen Committee to Evaluate and Recommend Awards for the Lane County Tourism Special Projects Grants for the Year 2007.
2) ORDER 07-1-3-7/In the Matter of Appointing Three Members to the Roads Advisory Committee.
3) ORDER 07-1-3-8/In the Matter of Appointing Two Members to the Vegetation Management Advisory Committee.
4) RESOLUTION AND ORDER 07-1-3-9/In the Matter of Setting a Public Hearing on the Proposal to Surrender Segments of County Road Numbers 615 (Butte Road), 1173 (Niblock Road), and 1088 (Harvey Road) to the City of Creswell (Public Hearing:† February 7, 2007, 1:30 pm).
5) ORDER 07-1-3-10 /In the Matter of Awarding a Contract to Peterson Machinery Co., in the Amount of $256,176.00, with One (1) Trade-in, for the Purchase of One (1), New, Crawler Tractor, Contract FY06/07 FS-04.
6) ORDER 07-1-3-11/In the Matter of Awarding a Contract to Peterson Machinery Co., in the Amount of $436,485.00, with Two (2) Trade-ins, for the Purchase of One (1), New, Steel Wheel Landfill Compactor, Contract FY06/07 FS-06.
END OF CONSENT CALENDAR * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
MOTION: to approve the Consent Calendar.
Dwyer MOVED, Green SECONDED.
VOTE: 5-0. †
9. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD
a. LEAD Request/ORDER 07-1-3-12/In the Matter of Transferring $1,000 from the General Fund Operational Contingency to Materials and Services Within General Expense to Support the Lead Leadership Development Program for Low-Income Youth in Lane County.
Stewart reported that this was a request for $1,000 donation for the youth leadership development program for low income youth.† Van Vactor indicated there was about $3,900 left.† †
VOTE: †to approve ORDER 07-1-3-12.
Dwyer MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
VOTE: 5-0. †
10. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
Dwyer stated he received a request from Dennis Shine for $250 for the Human Rights Committee for MLK. †
Fleenor reported the East Lane Soil and Conservation District will have its regular monthly board meeting on January 9, 2007.
Dwyer announced that Fleenor will be meeting constituents on Thursday at 10:00 a.m. at Daniís Cafť in Santa Clara.
12. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660 †
Per ORS 192.660(2)(h) for the purpose of consulting with council on litigation and per ORS 192.660 (2)(e) for the purpose of deliberation with property negotiators.
13. OTHER BUSINESS
There being no further business, Commissioner Stewart recessed the Board into Executive Session at 11:10 a.m.