September 3, 2008

1:30 p.m.

Commissioners' Conference Room

APPROVED 9/17/2008


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




a. SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING Ordinance PA 1252/In the Matter of Amending the Rural Comprehensive Plan to Redesignate Land From "Forest" to "Agricultural" and Rezoning That Land From "F-2/Impacted Forest Lands" to "E-40/Exclusive Farm Use"; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (File Pa 07-6555; Pfeiffer) (NBA & PM 8/20/08).


Jerry Kendall, Land Management, reported that the subject property is a lot with 240 acres.  He indicated the lot was split off last year into the subject property: 110 acres plus a small 1.8 adjoining tax lot.  He noted support for the action was from the soils on the subject property which are good for Douglas fir and grape growing.  He said the purpose for the rezone is to establish a winery on the property only allowed in the farm zone.  He said historically there has been farm use on the subject 110 acres since the 1930ís, starting with sheep.  He added that 80 acres of grapes were planted in the 1970ís.  He indicated there is Rural Comp Plan policy support: Goal 3, Policy 5 says to implement land use planning techniques that reflect appropriate uses and treatment of property  He added that Goal 9 Policy 9 supports the tourist industry and gives priority to supporting the industry.


Kendall noted there was a letter of concern by the adjoining neighbor:  Seneca Jones Timber that owns property to the west and north and those concerns have been addressed.  He added last week Mr. Pfeiffer the owner, signed a farm forest management agreement waiving his common law right to file nuisance lawsuits against the timber company. He hadnít received any further comment from Seneca Jones.  He noted there is structural fire support coverage on the property.  Kendall received an e-mail from the Junction City Fire Chief that said they would respond.  He added there are no traffic issues and the facility will generate less than 50 vehicles per peak hour. He stated the Planning Commission recommended approval of the proposal by a unanimous 6-0 vote on July 1.


Stewart asked if there were any ex parte contacts.


There were none.


Commissioner Stewart opened the Public Hearing.


Ron Funke, stated he represents the Pfeiffers.  He said they were happy about the recommendations from staff and the Planning Commission in favor of this application.  He said the acreage under question had been in agricultural use for 70 years.  He said this is an opportunity for the Pfeiffers and the Oregon Trail Association (a group of 65 rural merchants) to promote better rural economic health.


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


MOTION: to adopt Ordinance PA 1252.


Fleenor MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.


Fleenor stated that he was happy about this development.  He said the Pfeiffers will do a good job and there will be a benefit to the community and the entire county.


Dwyer was supportive as it preserves the land by changing impacted forest to EFU.  He added there is more protection for grapes and open space.


Stewart commented that times are changing and this is allows a use on the land that is appropriate and meets all criteria.




b. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 08-9-3-11/In the Matter of Commenting to the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) on Region 2, Area 5 Earmarks Requests List Priorities.


Celia Barry, Public Works, explained that this is a Public Hearing and an opportunity to take testimony and for the Board to provide comment to the Oregon Department of Transportation, on projects the Board would like to see be put on their official earmarks list.  She noted the Federal Highway and Transit Bill is coming up for reauthorization in 2009 and ODOT is preparing to put a list together for earmarks for the reauthorization.  She added that ODOT is requesting comments on surface transportation modernization projects. 


Barry indicated the projects proposed to be submitted to the OTC (page 3 of 5  in the board order, Exhibit ďAĒ) consist of projects for the Metropolitan Planning Organization area:  Eugene, Springfield, Metro Plan area and Coburg.  She added there is also a project for the rural area:  Highway 126 West Greenhill to Veneta.  She added the list is based upon priorities established in the past through the STIP process.  She said it also includes a Franklin Boulevard project for Eugene up to the Springfield Bridge and it is in the United Front document.  She added there are some projects the Board prioritized as part of the 2010/2015 priorities they took action on.  She noted an unfunded project they wanted the legislature to be aware of previously was the Highway 126 West Noti to Poterf Creek realignment.  She said ODOT did a preservation project on the realignment but the Board wanted to keep it on the list of unfunded large projects.  She indicated the Highway 99 upgrade is within Junction City.  She said the Board hadnít co-adopted the refinement plan and it will require a vacation of the rail line. She noted for the metro area, there has been a longstanding agreement that the MPO establishes priorities for the metro area.


Green asked what project was associated with the West Eugene Collaborative.


Barry said when the Board contributed funding to that effort, they stipulated the effort must include consideration of Highway 126 West from Greenhill to Veneta.


Green asked if this was a study.


Barry stated it was included in this proposal as a study to contribute ODOT budget money to begin a study prior to NEPA process starting.


Green asked about criteria for the OTC project they advanced.  He noted that statewide these projects would have to compete with other projects around the state from other regions.  He asked if a study should be included as opposed to projects that are ready.  He asked what had a better chance for funding.


Barry said the list would go directly to OTC, it doesnít get vetted on a region wide basis.  She said at the most four or five projects from the area would be included in the earmarks list and Lane County would be competing with other important projects statewide.  She noted a project people are concerned about is the Columbia Bridge crossing.  She said this would be looked at off the top and will not be considered in the mix with the other earmarked projects.


Sonny Chickering, ODOT, explained that earmarks are not prioritized based on technical merit, they are based on what the federal representatives would like to support.  He said ODOT will come up with a list of projects they have on their earmark list but it doesnít pre-empt local jurisdictions from pursuing other earmark requests that donít make it on the OTC list or they want to pursue independent of ODOT.  He said in order to get the funding and to spend it, it will have to meet the criteria. 


Barry indicated they have to be consistent with the Oregon Highway Plan and she said Lane County is consistent


Green said if they claim a project they are responsible for it.  He thought they should be careful in what they prioritize.  He added the earmarks will be competitive but they will have to own the project if they lobby for earmarks.


Chickering noted that as far as the local match, if an earmark project on the OTC list is awarded funds, then the local match would be covered by ODOT.  He said if one of the projects is not successful based on the OTC earmark list and the County pursues it independently, then the County would be responsible.


Sorenson asked what the authority was for the MPO to make decisions and who granted them authority.


Barry explained that the Metropolitan Planning Organization area is based on census data and it is a federal designation.  She said it is used for federal funding beyond transportation.  She indicated for transportation there is a provision in federal law and it makes their MPO area a transportation management area because there are more than 200,000 people in the area and it relates to this by allowing the MPO area to set its own priorities in the STIP process that ODOT cannot change due to the population level. 


Dwyer commented that he didnít see a fix on West 11th.  He thought the amount of the fix would be a very expensive project, close to the cost for the Beltline and Gateway.


Barry recalled the MPC took action on July 10 and the Roads Advisory Committee considered the matter on August 27.  She added that they used the public comment period for people to provide comment.  She said they received written comments from Mark Rabinowitz.  She added that Tom Boyatt provided verbal comments and he spoke in favor of the projects overall and gave description of the Springfield projects.  She indicated that the Roads Advisory Committee supports the proposed list as prioritized but they thought the Springfield Highway 126 at Main is more important than the Franklin Boulevard project for transportation needs. She added that they wanted to honor the MPO priorities at the same time.


Barry explained that the Board could decide not to do this.  She said there could be a disadvantage and the Board could possibly be jeopardizing funding coming into the area that is needed.  She discussed whether they could use the earmarks as a local match.  She said ODOT responded and eliminated language prohibiting the use of locally obtained earmarks for federal matches.  She noted the new language states that local agencies can count federal earmarks toward local contributions only when a project is fully funded, otherwise the earmark must be used to close the funding gap and any remaining funds could be applied to the local contribution.


Commissioner Stewart opened the Public Hearing.


Tom Boyatt, City of Springfield, stated the City of Springfield supports all projects on the list. He said it is important to make these requests of ODOT, whether they are funded or not. He added they will pursue the projects through their collective lobbying effort in Washington, D.C.  He thought it could be a prime opportunity for federal transportation funding in the area given Congressman DeFazioís position on the Transportation Subcommittee of Ways and Means.  He stated the Gateway Beltline is a component of the larger I-5 Beltline Project.  He said Springfield and the United Front partners have been lobbying through two federal cycles for money for Beltline I-5 and collectively they had brought in $25 million of federal dollars for the project in combination with state resources and close to $100 million would have been spent on the I-5 Beltline side.  He said they have been working hard to get the awareness that Gateway Beltline needs funding and needs to be a priority to move forward.  He said the city is close to getting to ďyesĒ with ODOT and federal highways on building the first phase of the intersection project.  He said they have $10 million of non-federal, non-state revenue to bear on the project and they hope to be in construction in 2010.  He indicated the second project is the Franklin Boulevard project.  He said they were thinking about it from the Federal Courthouse in Eugene to the Springfield bridges.  He said they have a long range vision of what they can bring to the community in terms of land use and redevelopment with transportation.


Robert Voman, Eugene, discussed oil.  He commented that five years from now the economy will be worse.  He said they need a transportation triage.  He didnít think they should be spending money on any new or widened roads.  He said they have already reached peak traffic and there will be fewer cars on the roads. He stated they need some type of electrified mass transit system.  He recalled that Eugene had a trolley car system in the 1920ís.  He said if they spend $100 million to widen the Beltline, it would be a waste of money that should be spent on an electrified mass transit.


Fleenor thought they should be looking for maintenance and safety related improvements.  He noted that more people are injured or killed on Highway 126 every year, then all homicides or victims of crime put together in Lane County.  He said if they want to be safe as a society, public safety should be focused on keeping the public safe and having transportation that doesnít kill or maim people.  He wanted to move forward making roads safer.


Dwyer explained they are dealing with road systems in phases that have already been designed and in place.  He commented that bullet trains are expensive and society is based on different principles.  He stated that the market would drive it.


Mark Rabinowitz, Eugene, commented that it is not transportation that kills people, it is people that kill people.  He said there is no requirement that people need to be considerate when they are behind a wheel of a car.  He said the projects the Board is considering endorsing are not fixing projects, they are expansions.  He said the I-5 Beltline is not a safety fix.  He said the safety fix would be to add a collector distributor lane to eliminate the weaving problems.  He indicated that ODOT spent over $2 million to study the West Eugene Parkway after they realized it wasnít going to get built and the money wasnít there.  He said there was no effort to budget for higher gas prices threatening the local bus system.  He noted they are at a plateau and growth is over.  He stated they need carpools but it is a social issue and not something developers make money on.   He thought they just rebuilt Franklin Boulevard and was wondering why they want to rebuild it again.  He said he will be campaigning to vote against the highway measure.


There being no further business, Commissioner Stewart closed the Public Hearing.


Green asked for a list statewide of the projects they would be competing against other regions.  He asked if the dollars from OTC were interchangeable


Barry said this is about the Boardís providing input to OTC and their priorities.


Green stated the money they get must be used on the projects and they canít put the money to other projects.


Fleenor asked how they change the paradigm from new capital improvements for other types of transportation mechanism.


Barry said they are looking at other forms of transportation.  She noted that this item is around surface transportation but there are other discussions for other modes of transportation addressing the need to lose the reliance for single occupancy vehicles for travel.


Alex Cuyler, Intergovernmental Relations Manager, explained that this is just a project list in alignment with ODOT procedures.  He said they are working with other jurisdictions to develop policy recommendations for the Federal Highway Transportation Bill and these are the appropriated projects.  He said they have the opportunity to provide policy recommendations.


Sorenson asked if they could get language about supporting the Western Climate Initiative. He also asked about the sustainability executive order that state agencies are required to follow. 


Barry said the Western Climate Initiative is just starting to meet and they have not yet developed recommendations.


Sorenson thought Oregon and several western states have been meeting. He said they are ready to make recommendations regarding greenhouse gases.  He said there is the sustainability executive order that requires state agencies including ODOT to do something to put out materials about what the sustainability executive order has to do with ODOT.  He wanted to turn it from building highways into transportation and the overall goals the state is trying to achieve.


Dwyer stated that they would either spend the money here or somewhere else.  He said they have two choices:  to either follow what ODOT wants or not do it.  He said if they donít do it, someone else is in control and making decisions.  He said they need to decide to move forward.


Stewart recalled that Green wanted a list of all the statewide projects and there was a request by Sorenson about potential wording that could be added to the document.


Barry indicated that this is a placeholder to get the construction solutions.  She added that it will be a multiple phased project.


Fleenor said besides the transportation triage, they should have a comment about how they need to transition over from a public policy/legislative mechanism that provides them with a menu of options instead of one project.


Green commented that having been at a number of meetings, if the local jurisdiction doesnít place a priority on the projects, no one else would.  He said if they donít show interest in their own projects by not participating, they canít expect representatives from other areas to lobby on their behalf.  He thought if they started utilizing their own dollars to make the policy changes, they have a better argument because they are making an investment in their own jurisdiction.


Dr. Bob Sing, Eugene, thinks Eugene would do well to advertise that they were already using electric vehicles.  He said that Eugene has advanced to that point.  He commented that they will get stronger support for that type of transportation.


Barry indicated that Lane County also has several electrical vehicles.




a. ORAL REPORT/ODOT Region 2 Area Manager.


Sonny Chickering, ODOT, commented on the cooperation between ODOT and County staff.  He said currently they have a good relationship and have been cooperating on a number of topics.  He said they have responded to concerns about the safety at Delta/Beltline for Nancy Nathanson.  He said they are trying to alleviate the situation until larger fixes are identified.  He said Spartz informed him the exit numbers were missing on the Beltline and they were not aware of that. He indicated that they will be having public comment for the 2010/2013 STIP.  He said they will have an open house in conjunction with the Roads Advisory Committee. 


With regard to OTC participation, Chickering recalled there was an expectation in the past on the part of local entities that a member of the OTC was assigned to that area. He added this area enjoyed having a local representative on the OTC.  He indicated there are two new members of the OTC and the OTC has asked them to pass along the new information that they are no longer assigning specific representatives to specific geographic areas.


Chickering indicated that he is attempting to put together a coalition of agencies to work on pedestrian improvements along some of their major highway corridors.  He noted one is  Highway 126 in Springfield between 20th and 69th Street.  He indicated there is a lot of pedestrian and bicycle activity in light of people driving less. He added that Highway 99 has the same problem with pedestrian crossings.


b. REPORT/Metropolitan Area Transportation System Plan Updates.


Barry reported Attachment B (copy in file) was the work plan the Board reviewed in July.  She indicated they were not requesting any action today.  She gave a preview of what they would be requested to approve in the form of  a work plan for transportation on September 15.  She said they are asking the Board to approve it because they have to go to LCDC with the work program to get their approval.  She added the population forecasting will also relate to this.


Barry indicated Transportation Planning Rule, Goal 12, and SB 3337 are requiring the cities of Eugene and Springfield to separate their UGB.  She said the Eugene Springfield metro area TransPlan separates them into individual local TSPís.  She added at the same time in November, the Metropolitan Policy Committee adopted an updated Regional Transportation Plan(RTP), a federal program document that is required to be updated every four years in order to bring federal funds into this area for projects.  She said the Transportation Planning Rule was recently updated to require the local TSPís  be consistent with the federal program document.  She said in November when they updated the RTP, the West Eugene Parkway was taken out and there were two projects in Eugene and two projects in Springfield that were moved from the illustrative list to the financially constrained list.   She noted that it is a federal requirement, not a state land use requirement.  She added at the same time the Oregon Department of Transportation became concerned with the adoption of the updated RTP because it had a horizon year of 2031, whereas TransPlanís horizon year was 2015.  She said they are addressing that concern. She indicated  that the cites are trying to move forward with comprehensive land use planning and transportation planning that goes with it.  She said in order to do that, they have to address state concerns about consistency between the RTP and the TPR. Barry recalled at the July meeting, the Board looked at the short term actions and the cities provided direction for staff to move forward on those actions.


Dwyer indicated as a Board they discussed rural reserves. He asked how they would preserve the integrity of Class 3 and 4 soils high value farm land.  He asked who represented Lane County.


With regard to the rural reserve concept, Barry stated the Boardís role will be to co-adopt transportation documents with transportation issues that concern lands outside of the city limits.  She said with regard to land use, the work program includes land use components that have to come before the TSP.  With regard to the Boardís priorities, she said when they get to look at anything that comes outside the city limits, they get to weigh in.  She said they are asking for the Boardís approval to go to LCDC on October 15.  She asked the Board to adopt the work program, which the cities have already begun working on.


Dwyer wanted a discussion about what policies the Board of Commissioner want and then have those policies in the work plan so they know what their goals are.  He wanted the cities to work around their goals instead of the Board working around the citiesí goals.


Barry said the Board could provide that direction to have those considerations brought into play.  She said they were not asking to approve a land use work program, they are asking to approve a TSP update related to other land use activities.  She noted the rural reserves will come into play when they look at UGB changes.  She indicated the public will be involved with the process.


Green was interested in rural reserves but they hadnít formally adopted it.  He said they need to get something into the plan that the Board is interested in rural reserves.


Vorhes indicated that later in the month the Board will have a discussion about long range planning.  He said the priorities include the Metro Plan polices and goals.  He said  that would be a place to discuss where they want the planning program to expend energy and how they want to convey whatever policy message the Board has developed to the cities.  He noted in dealing with inconsistencies between the Federal Regional Transportation Plan and the current TransPlan, while it is being worked on to bring consistency, there will be HB 3337 work going on for the separate UGB concept and that might be a place where the Board could direct staff to have conversations outside the city limits including rural reserves or other Metro Plan policies.


Barry explained that this program will not preclude the Board from working on the rural reserve policies.  She indicated that this goes through 2013.  She said there will be a public involvement component upfront.  She said they will be looking to the Board to address their concerns. 


Green asked under the Post Acknowledgement Plan Amendment, when the city council recommends they remove the West Eugene Parkway, if it would be in conflict with the development in the West Eugene area.  He said they need an arterial or major facility for a plan development or they run into conflict with the existing plan.


Barry said they will have to address that issue.  She said in working with ODOT and DLCD staff,  local staff came up with proposed language to address the issue in the short term and the City of Eugene elected to initiate the amendment to delete the West Eugene Parkway.  She said she has to show how they are otherwise providing for development.  She said what the city does is require that developers show how their transportation needs are met.


Stewart said there is energy among the Board for rural reserves.  He wanted to put together a series of work sessions that discuss this and to give staff direction to work on it.


Dwyer stated they need to have all the soil overlays of the existing boundaries so they could make their decision based on science, not politics.


Barry recommended that conversation be brought to Land Management planning because her focus is more on the transportation piece and planning has the legal authority to deal with land use.


Sorenson recommended that they advance the federal component to be going at the same time as the state component.  He said LCDC is concerned that if they go ahead and have a Federal Transportation Plan, they are continuing to implement and plan the roads.  He added that after they plan the roads, they plan the land use.  He said they should work with the federal plan and state plan simultaneously.  He added that issues like open space, energy, food, economic development and sustainability are not appropriate for any one list.  He noted that this is planning and how they want to see the federal transportation dollars used over a lengthy period of time.  He thought there could be an opportunity for them to be more creative.  He said they need to determine what type of community they want and then they could plan the transportation around what they need.


Barry disagreed with Sorenson on what this represents.  She indicated that it represents the reverse.  She said that is why they are showing the land use work going on and that will inform the transportation needs.  She added the RTP work will be going on at the same time.  She said the RTP needs to be based upon land use in the County and what the community envisions.



c. FIRST READING AND SETTING SECOND READING & PUBLIC HEARING Ordinance No. PA 1253/In the Matter of Amending the Eugene-Springfield Metropolitan Area General Plan (Metro Plan) Consistent With Policy G.3 in Chapter III, Section G.  Public Facilities and Services Element; Amending Table 4, Table 16, and Map 2 of the Public Facilities and Services Plan (PFSP) and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (Metro Plan Amendment) (Second Reading and Public Hearing 9/17/08).


MOTION: to approve a First Reading and Setting a Second Reading and Public Hearing for Ordinance No. PA 1253 for September 17 at 6:00 p.m.




Fleenor asked if there was a time sensitivity for this.  He said part of Lane Countyís long term planning from planning staff was to evaluate the Metro Plan.  He didnít think it was a good time to review this.


Greg Mott, City of Springfield, said the amendment to the PFSP is being requested now as a result of an updated Wastewater Management Plan.  He said it is to address the federal requirements for the permit of the MWMC facility.  He indicated that some of the facilities are outside of the city limits.  He said regardless of the outcome of the Metro Plan, they would be obligated under the law to provide for a projected population within the urban growth boundary.  He said the public facilities plan does that.  He indicated with the amendment, they will need to make changes to the plan.  He said it has to be about flow infiltration.


Fleenor asked if they approve this prior to their coordinated population forecast if they were locked into an already established population forecast that Springfield is using to project what Springfieldís infrastructure requirements will be in 2025.


Mott explained what the consultants did when they updated the wastewater plan, was look at the plan development within the existing UGB and the calculation with the amount of water that would occur.


Fleenor asked if they could take this out of the Metro Plan and have an IGA between Springfield and Lane County.


Mott indicated they were reviewing the administrative rules that require public facility plans.


Vorhes said the rule talks about what they have in place is a public facilities plan that covers the whole region of the Metro Plan.  He indicated that it is a different boundary than the MPO for transportation purposes.  He added it is the same status as TransPlan.  He said it is a plan refining and describing the public facilities and services for the Eugene Springfield metropolitan area.  He said it looks at the currently approved and acknowledged Metro Plan for the designations and potential for build out in the urban area.  He said this plan speaks to public facilities outside of the UGB.


VOTE: 5-0.




a. ORDER 08-9-3-12/In the Matter of Adjusting the Compensation of Elected Officials.


Greta Utecht, Human Resources, distributed information regarding the Social Security cost of living chart.  She indicated that overall the Social Security cost of living total has been 32.6 percent since 1994 in comparison to 41.3 percent for the Portland, Salem metro area. She also ran new information about the Elected Officialsí recommendation.  She said the total if the Board were to approve the entire package is $52,000 and if the Board were to only approve the two percent COLA plus the one percent deferred comp, amounts to $21,000.


Sorenson thought they should consider the recommendation of the Budget Committee and the Elected Officials Compensation Committee.


Stewart asked if there were options that by the end of September if they received Secure Rural School funding they would have time to revisit this again.


Dwyer noted that any COLA given to staff cannot be given to the Board of Commissioners until the following January.


Fleenor wanted to see the elected officials with a CPI or Social Security cost of living, a separate index from non-represented employees.  He was comfortable with a two percent COLA plus one percent deferred compensation for all elected officials, with the Social Security cost of living as the CPI.  He wanted a provision that it would never go above 3.5 percent.


Stewart said the recommendation from Sorenson was to take this information and come back to the Board.


b. ORDER 08-9-3-13/In the Matter of Appointing and Establishing the Salary and Benefits of County Counsel.


MOTION: to approve ORDER 08-9-3-13.


Fleenor MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.


VOTE: 5-0.




Sorenson recalled earlier they voted on ORDER 08-9-3-7 and he asked to change his vote from yes to no.  He said The Register Guard carried a story about the Saturday September 20 conference of Oregon Wild.  He recalled a Deputy was called by Lane Transit District to take away a 25 year old man who was acting funny on the bus.  He said it was  remarkable on the part of the Sheriff to avoid an accident.


Fleenor reported he was having his community dialogue at Daniís Coffee Shop.


Stewart announced there will be a Joint Elected Officials meeting on September 15 and September 17. He added that Day of Caring in September 16.












There being no further business, Commissioner Stewart adjourned the meeting at 5:00 p.m.



Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary