BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'

REGULAR MEETING

January 7, 2009

9:00 a.m.

Commissionersí Conference Room

APPROVED 1/28/2009

 

Commissioner Peter Sorenson presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Bill Fleenor, Rob Handy and Faye Stewart present.  County Administrator Jeff Spartz, County Counsel Liane Richardson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

 

1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA

 

Sorenson added Item 3. b) 6. to the Consent Calendar.  It is a board order appointing Chair and Vice Chair.  He added ORDER 09-1-5-1 will be placed under Commissionersí Business.

 

2. PUBLIC COMMENTS

 

David Force,  Eugene, stated he represented Jim Gillette in different parts.  He explained that there has been an ongoing land use dispute enforcement issued between Gillette and Lane County. He thought there had been a misunderstanding of some things taking place.  He and Gillette are in agreement that the ultimate solution should be a political one instead of a legal solution.  He recalled that this has taken place for over a decade and it could go on for another one.  He recalled the Countyís goals were to bring Gillette into compliance with the land use code,  and he had been in compliance for two years.  He added the fact the controversy has to go on costing Gillette and the County money doesnít make sense. He indicated that there was a Writ of Revenue proceeding in the case before Judge Carlson in 2006 and Gillette was the prevailing party.  He added that Gillette didnít get everything he wanted and now there is another Writ of Revenue proceeding that began in November.

 

Jim Gillette, Eugene, said the Board promised him a hearing on the old case.  He said the Board stated in public meetings that they werenít interested in punishing him; they were only interested in his getting into compliance.  He indicated that he is under compliance.  He wanted to be a good citizen to the County.  He wants to give his land to the city and he wants it to work.   He thought there was someone in the legal department that didnít like him.  He also thought there were neighbors who donít want him to have a park and they could be the ones behind it.  He recalled that there was no transcript of the hearing because they didnít do a complete transcript.  He stated that last year he handed the County a statement of 29 things he thought the County had done and he had said if any of those were untrue, he would give up.  He thought he has been stepped on by the County but he wants to cooperate and be a good County citizen.

 

3. CONSENT CALENDAR

 

A. Approval of Minutes

May 16, 2007, Regular Meeting, 1:30 p.m.

May 23, 2007, Regular Meeting, 9:00 a.m.

May 23, 2007, Regular Meeting, 1:30 p.m.

May 30, 2007, Special Meeting, 3:30 p.m.

December 16, 2008, Regular Meeting, 10:30 a.m.

December 17, 2008, Regular Meeting, 1:30 p.m.

December 17, 2007, Budget Committee/Leadership Team, 8:30 a.m.

 

B. County Administration

 

1) ORDER 09-1-7-1/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Florence Justice Court Through January 7, 2010.

 

2) ORDER 09-1-7-2/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Central Lane Justice Court Through January 7, 2010.

 

3) ORDER 09-1-7-3/In the Matter of Reappointing Justices Pro Tempore for the Oakridge Justice Court Through January 7, 2010.

 

4) ORDER 09-1-7-4/In the Matter of Appointing Three Members to the Public Safety Coordinating Council and Amending the Terms of Statutory and Other Ex Officio Positions to ďOpenĒ.

 

5) ORDER 09-1-7-5/In the Matter of Transferring $300 from the General Fund Operational Contingency to Materials and Services within General Expense for the ďWhat Martin Luther King, Jr. Means to Lane CountyĒ Event.

 

6) ORDER 09-1-7-13/In the Matter of Appointing Chair and Vice Chair for

the Board of County Commissioners

 

 

C. County Counsel

 

1) ORDER 09-1-7-6/In the Matter of Selecting Newspapers to Publish Monthly Notice of Expenditures, Personal Property Tax Warrants, and Notices of Real Property Tax Foreclosure.

 

D. Health and Human Services

 

1) ORDER 09-1-7-7/In the Matter of Awarding a Contract Amendment to Supported Employment Services in the Amount of $44,112 for Services to Individuals with Developmental Disabilities for the Time Period from November 13, 2008 through June 30, 2009.

 

2) ORDER 09-1-7-8/In the Matter of Adding One Fulltime (1.0 FTE) Environmental Health Specialist under Position Number 15181 for FY 2008-2009 in Fund 286 Department of Health & Human Services.

 

E. Public Works

 

1) ORDER 09-1-7-9/In the Matter of Approving an Intergovernmental Agreement With the State of Oregon and the City of Eugene to Facilitate Replacement of the Interstate-5 Bridge Over the Willamette River.

 

2) ORDER 09-1-7-10/In the Matter of Accepting a Dedication of Land to be Used as a Public Road Easement for County Road No. 602 (Pitney Lane) (16-04-06)

 

3) ORDER 09-1-7-11/In the Matter of Setting a Public Hearing for the Proposed Surrender of Portions of Rhododendron Drive (Co. Rd. No. 65) and Sebastian Street (Co. Rd. No. 1969) To the City of Florence.

 

Handy requested item E. 1) and C. 1) be pulled.

 

MOTION: to approve the balance of the Consent Calendar.

 

Fleenor MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

C. 1)

 

Handy said he has a goal around community involvement and public outreach.  He thought there was a situation where they could blend their traditional approach with looking at things in a different way.  He commented that he still wanted to see The Register Guard involved but he said in going door-to-door, he heard people were disenfranchised with The Register Guard.  He noted that The Eugene Weekly has a distribution around the County of 40,000 papers.  He asked the Board to do the notice within The Register Guard, but also use The Eugene Weekly.

 

Dwyer stated that the law requires a newspaper of a certain amount of circulation. He indicated that  The Register Guard was the only newspaper that met the criteria.  He said The Eugene Weekly  would have to be in addition to and not in lieu of.  He added that if they are going to expand the publishing of their notices, they would have to decide which papers they wanted to use.

 

Richardson stated that only The Register Guard qualified from the criteria.  She recommended having The Register Guard as the official paper and to bring back a discussion item to see if other papers could be designated.

 

Stewart concurred in choosing The Register Guard and then reviewing others.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-7-6  with staff examining the cost and the circulation of each weekly paper, bringing the information back as a discussion item.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Fleenor SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

 

5. EMERGENCY BUSINESS

 

None.

 

6. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE

 

Fleenor recalled last Monday when they discussed changes to the Good Governance Board Order, Bobby Green was watching the web cast.  He said Green sent him an e-mail asking him to retract the fact that Green was involved in any changes to the board order.  Fleenor officially retracted any comments he made relevant to Greenís involvement in the order.  He said he will avoid mentioning Green relevant to good governance in the future.

 

Stewart said at Public Comment there were comments from the attorney for Jim Gillette.  He asked the Board if they could have a review of Jim Gilletteís matter and address the comments that were made about his winning the lawsuit.

 

7. RESOLUTIONS

 

None.

 

8. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS

 

a. REPORT BACK Approval of Oregon Ocean Policy Advisor Council Letter of Support.

 

Fleenor explained that this letter was requested by Representative Susan Morgan to fill the position being vacated by John Griffith.

 

MOTION: to approve recommending Susan Morgan for the appointment to the Ocean Policy Advisory Committee.

 

Fleenor MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

b. REPORT BACK Approval of Letter to LRAPA.

 

Stewart recalled that the Board received a letter from the City of Springfield requesting that Lane County review its commitment to the intergovernmental  agreement and to LRAPA.  He noted at the Boardís last meeting of the year they had a presentation from Merlin Hough, Director of LRAPA.  He recalled at the conclusion of that presentation that the Board wanted to continue its involvement with LRAPA.  He added that Lane County was asked to send a letter stating its support so there could be easing of tensions among the employees and the members involved with the agency.

 

MOTION: to approve sending the letter to LRAPA.

 

Stewart MOVED, Fleenor SECONDED.

 

Sorenson recommended sending a copy of the letter to the City of Springfield.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

c. ORDER 09-1-7-14/ In the Matter of Appointing Liaisons to Various Committees

and Agencies

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-7-14 with discussed changes.

 

Fleenor MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

 

d. ORDER 09-1-17-15/In the Matter of Appointing Representatives to Various  

Committees and Agencies

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-17-15.

 

Handy MOVED, Fleenor SECONDED.

 

Dwyer commented that this Board order will not be beneficial to the organization as a whole as it is cumbersome and will create more work.  He didnít like it and didnít think all of the ramifications were thought out.  He said they should figure out a way to phase out the committees, not just an order ending the committees.  He indicated at the Finance and Audit Committee they listen to three hours of testimony.  He thought they might have to meet other days for the committees.  He noted that any recommendation made to the Board is still made in public, (as they are noticed) and any subsequent referral to the Board is made in public and the meetings are televised.  He commented there is lots of transparency.  He didnít understand why it is in the Boardís interest to get rid of the committees unless the Board wants to take on another layer of responsibility.  He noted with the Economic Development Committee the Board would have to participate in scoring all projects.  He didnít think it was in the Boardís interest to open the scoring up to the whole Board as it might embarrass people.  He stated that he would not support this order.

 

Sorenson said the board order is a substantial improvement over last yearís board order.  He said they are recognizing the work they have internally and with constituents.  He added they have outside responsibilities and this board order appoints the commissioners to the various external organizations.  He said they are not proposing to get rid of any committee.  He added that the membership has changed by board order.  He stated they are taking the commissioners off the committees.  He added the committees could still meet and do work and they will be invited to meet with the Board jointly.  He indicated that this board order is specifically time limited to 30 days so if the Board wants to revisit and appoint commissioners, they could do so.

 

Handy said citizens having been telling him for months that they want the County to do things differently.  He said they have to provide leadership and take care of the organization with a long range plan that is sustainable, making sure they can help the organization and community get revenue.  He thought this was a good first step.

 

Stewart thought it was important for all of the commissioners to be involved.  He said it is nice when they have citizen members on the committees and they come up and appreciate the commissioners being there listening.  He had concerns about this.  He wanted this figured out before they adopt a 30 day trial and error deal.  He noted that Economic Development meets monthly and they have grants that need review.  He added the SAVE Committee meets monthly and also makes recommendations.  He said employees appreciate commissioners present who make decisions and meet with them.  He also thought it was important to hear from the Parks Advisory Committee.  He said he wouldnít support this board order.  He hoped they wouldnít regret doing this in the future.

 

Fleenor said there is nothing in the board order that states a commissioner canít attend a committee meeting.  With regard to Finance and Audit, he said they were asking for an agenda position and to then come in to report.  He thought meeting in Finance and Audit and the reporting back to the Board from Finance and Audit was a waste of time for staff who is giving the presentation twice.  He thought this would be more efficient and money saving.  He thought all five commissioners should receive all the information, not just one commissioner.  He said it was important to have all the committees in front of the Board giving them the information as they are the decision makers.

 

Dwyer commented that they are moving toward a staff driven model.  He wanted an elected officialís model.  He commented that it will have long range consequences with resources.  He stated that money corrupts.  He added that they are injecting something that sometimes skews the process.

 

Sorenson said this is to get the commissioners focused to help govern the County.  He said they are sending the clear message they want to have the policy decisions done at the Board table where the public sees the business being done.

 

Handy supported this because they have a heavy workload and his approach to good governance is for the important decisions to go to the full Board so they could be vetted among all the citizens who voted for them.  He thought Spartz was an important part of this.  He didnít look at it being staff driven, he thought of this as sharing a triangle with Spartz.

 

Stewart urged the Board to take more time to review the committees and what is involved with them.  He didnít believe unplugging him from committees was a mistake.

 

Fleenor said there are too many bosses with respect to internal committees and staff.  He commented that they are not the staffís bosses, Spartz is in charge of staff.  He said to have the commissioners oversee staff is a direct and clear violation of the separation of the executive from the policy makers.  He thought that was poor governance.  He commented that they do not have time to micromanage.

 

Dwyer said they donít direct staff, they work with staff to develop an agenda.  He added that they make policy.  He said they need to go slow because they are not benefiting the citizens of Lane County.

 

Sorenson wanted the motion to reflect that there was no Exhibit A to this board order.

 

Stewart requested that Sorenson take time to evenly spread out the commissioners on the committees where mandated.

 

VOTE: 3-2 (Dwyer, Stewart dissenting).

 

e ORDER 09-1-5-1/In the Matter of Establishing Good Governance Principles and

Practices for the Lane County Board of Commissioners

 

Spartz had concerns about what exactly is required in terms of minutes and preservation in written form.  He recommended consulting with the state archivist.  He didnít want the County to get in trouble with the matter.  He thought before they changed the minutes that there should be a work session.

 

Sorenson asked that the Save-It Committee explore a larger program allowing for taxpayers to submit ideas.

 

Dwyer asked when two or more commissioners get elected in the same year, which gets sworn in first. He thought it should be alphabetical.  He asked for that language to be inserted into the board order.

 

Sorenson requested that a review of this board order come back to the board July 8.

 

Stewart wanted to have a meeting in Cottage Grove including the Cottage Grove Youth Advisory Council and members of Commission on Children and Families.  He wanted it to be focused on what a Lane County Youth Advisory Council would look like.  He said it was brought to his attention that for certain grants the County applies for written minutes are required.  He asked if they were continuing on with a minutes recorder.  He asked if they were going to have a minutes recorder, why they would have to bring in a court reporter for additional cost.

 

Fleenor indicated the last sentence in the minutes section of the board order said another body could take the minutes by a majority vote of the board.

 

Stewart asked what the costs would be for this board order.

 

Spartz indicated there would be additional costs.

 

Stewart commented that it was hard to approve something when they donít know what the costs would be.  He was in favor of good governance, but he had concerns about a few items.

 

Fleenor reiterated that this was a living document that they could revisit at any time.  He said it was an attempt to try something different.  He thought the citizens of Lane County would be appreciative of the fact that they are trying.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-5-1.

 

Fleenor MOVED, Handy SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 4-1. (Dwyer dissenting).

 

Stewart explained he voted no on the portion of the committees.  He still had concerns about cost and staffing.  He said they have been assured by the Board that this is a living document that could be reviewed.  

 

9. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION

 

a. Announcements

 

None.

 

b. PRESENTATION/Working for You Video.

 

10. PUBLIC WORKS

 

a. DISCUSSION/Work Session Regarding January 13, 2009 Joint Elected Officials Discussion on Metro Plan Revisions Required to Address Issues Identified by the Lane County Board of Commissioners.

 

Stewart reported that he and Mayors Piercy and Leiken met to discuss the agenda  for the upcoming Joint Elected Officials meeting.  He said the intent was to deal with the five areas of concern the Board of Commissioners had regarding the Metro Plan:  annexation policies, ambiguous and conflicting plan language related to urban services, perceived citizen disenfranchment, jurisdictional autonomy and dispute resolution policies.  He said they recommended taking item two and four to the joint elected officials meeting.

 

Kent Howe, Land Management, indicated that staff next week will seek general direction and input from the joint elected officials as they begin development of specific Metro Plan amendments.  He noted that issue two the Board identified was description of urban services in the Metro Plan.  He commented that it was problematic for Lane County in that the terms used in the plan donít specifically refer to, define or recognize those key functions and services that the County provides that are used extensively by urban residents.  He stated that it was problematic for funding for Sheriff and Correction Services, the District Attorney, criminal prosecution, Parole and Probation, Elections, regional transportation facilities, Mental and Public Health services and Animal Services.  He said if the County is interested in funding those departments in different ways then the creation of special taxing districts for those services would likely not be feasible or could be precluded because public services are not defined in the scope of the defined key urban services in the Metro Plan.  He noted the Metro Planís fundamental policy is cities being the primary provider of urban services.

 

Howe thought the solutions would be revisions that would include modifications and clarifications to the fundamental principles of the Metro Plan and the definition of key urban services and public services within the Metro Plan glossary.  He indicated that the planning directors met on December 15 to discuss modifying the existing fundamental principle or goal and policy language in the Metro Plan that needed clarity.  He added that making the clarifications could have far reaching and unintended consequences with the cities and delay their land use and annexation review criteria and their process.  He said they thought the possibility of adding a definition in the Metro Plan glossary to articulate the key County provider of urban services was a possibility.  He added that option would recognize the Countyís role in urban service provision, and it wouldnít run the risk of impacting the citiesí land use and annexation review criteria.  He indicated that it is unlikely that approach would go far enough to fully recognize and incorporate the Countyís urban service provider role.  He and the other planning directors recommended a more comprehensive analysis to determine which specific components of the Metro Plan would require revision to acknowledge the Countyís role as a key urban service provider and to determine what possible externalities those revisions would have on existing city processes.  He said they recommended that any future Metro Plan revisions to address the issues be coordinated with city staff as they develop the proposed amendments associated with HB 3337.

 

Howe indicated item four dealt with jurisdictional autonomy and the Metro Plan boundary adjustment.  He noted the remedy involves limiting the applicability of the Metro Plan by modifying the boundaries so it is coterminous with Eugene and Springfieldís urban growth boundary.  He said they are trying to position the Board of Commissioners and staff to interject and work with the two cities in developing ways to address changes to the Metro Plan as the cities is making changes.

 

Fleenor thought they were getting off the trail.  He said they need to be focusing on representation and fairness for the individuals living in the urban growth boundary outside the city limits.  He thought the technical adjustments were secondary.  He thought they should first discuss equal representation.  He wanted to see a simpler process. He wanted to see Eugene and Springfield separated from one another.

 

Sorenson asked if they could terminate the Metro Plan.

 

Vorhes explained that terminating the Metro Plan is not an option.  He noted that terminating the IGAís with the two cities is what they discussed with the urban transition.  He said they havenít sent notice that is called for under the agreement.    He said the Board will have to consider what will have to happen to make the transition if the cities allow the County to take over the services.

 

Handy stated he agreed with the Boardís list of five items.  He agreed the dispute resolution part was challenging and it should be discussed later.  He noted the biggest priority is the citizen disenfranchment.  He didnít think coordinating only among different jurisdictionís staff was good.  He was interested in community engagement.  He agreed with number two, but wouldnít support the others.  He didnít want to be as concerned about opening up the Metro Plan.

 

Stewart stated that he made it clear to both mayors the most important piece the Board wanted to focus on was representation.  He commented that this is a three way partnership and no one is king.  He thought if they were going to take this approach that they wouldnít get anywhere.  He said if they donít want to work together and recognize that they have two other partners in the process and they donít want to recognize the County is an equal partner, they will be wasting their time.  He thought they should get support at the legislature and change the land use process.  He recommended going to the joint elected officials meeting and working on the two items to try to accomplish things.

 

Fleenor commented that if they canít solve the most important item first than they are wasting their time.  He asked if they could do something better.  He said each jurisdiction needs to develop its own comprehensive plan.  He indicated that politically and demographically he sees a difference between Springfield and Eugene.  He asked if they should look at a whole new paradigm.

 

Dwyer said he is willing to work with the cities.  He wants more open space and  rural reserves.

 

Vorhes reiterated that the Board was interested in all five issues.  He said they tried to set the memo up to make it clear they will work on the other issues at Lane County.  He said the intention of this memo was to indicate that the County was going to continue to work on all five issues but they wanted to start engaging the other two elected bodies on the two items decided as the starting point.  He added the rural reserves could be articulated as the cities look at what they are going o do with the studies on buildable lands.  With regard to the two specific issues, he said the reason the planning directors discussed changing the definition is to allow the Board and staff to have a conversation about what the changes to the Metro Plan should look like.  He thought there was likelihood that from the efforts under HB3337 to establish separate urban growth boundaries, they will see a change in the landscape of planning in the metro area.

 

Laird commented that they identified items with the least resistance as they attend meetings with Eugene and Springfield.  He said as the text amendments come through, they can make sure the Boardís interests are inserted.  He said they are trying to have specific text language put in the plan.  He noted they have continually run into the fact that the cities are the logical provider of urban services. 

 

Dwyer indicated the City of Springfield supported the concept of rural reserves.  He said they need to define a rural reserve and what type of soils would be in rural reserves.  He said they need to discuss the voluntary insertion of property into a rural reserve concept.  He stated they need to find out what they want to preserve and enhance so they donít become California.

 

Sorenson hoped they could move forward with rural reserves.

 

Handy didnít think the County should be a provider of urban services, but he thought that could be a possible outcome. 

 

Fleenor thought Lane County should take on urban services if that is the only way they could provide representational government.  He said they havenít had a discussion with the joint elected officials regarding whether they want the Metro Plan and if they do, if they could modify it. He added that if they agree the Metro Plan is worth saving, then they could discuss which priorities to take on.

 

11. HUMAN RESOURCES

 

a. ORDER 09-1-7-12/In the Matter of Creating the New Classification of Electrical Inspector and Establishing its Corresponding Salary Range.

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-7-12.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Stewart SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

12. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

Fleenor announced that he has a community dialogue tomorrow at Shariís Restaurant.

 

Sorenson announced the Board will meet on Tuesday January 13 on what the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., means to Lane County.  He also announced that Tuesday is a joint elected officials meeting at noon at the Springfield City Hall.  He added at 1:45 p.m. the Board will meet in Springfield to have a discussion of economic development issues.  He said he is working on a proposal for Lane County to commit to helping rural landowners that have high value forestlands privately held.  He indicated that the County would be involved through bonding power, having an investment in clearing the lands, growing trees and providing rent to the landowner.

 

Stewart received a phone call from Gloria Griffith about contributing to a Martin Luther King event in Springfield.  He understood that previously they supported the event financially.  He didnít know if it had been processed.  He wanted to reconfirm the commitment.  He asked if the Board could contribute $500 to the event through the Board contingency fund.

 

Spartz said it is necessary for the County to receive an invoice and then they can issue the money.

 

13. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD

 

None.

 

14. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660

 

Per ORS 192.660(2)(h) for the purpose of consulting with counsel on litigation.

 

15. OTHER BUSINESS

 

Stewart recalled this morning at Public Comment that Jim Gillette and his attorney made some comments.  He asked if there was interest to discuss this in an Executive Session.

 

Fleenor thought this should be discussed in Executive Session the last week in January.

 

ORDER 09-1-7-16/In the Matter Allowing the Legislative Committee to Meet Separately from the Board of County Commissioners for the Duration of the 75th Oregon Legislature

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-7-16.

 

Stewart MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE; 5-0.

 

ORDER 09-1-7-17/ In the Matter of Allowing the Technology Management Team to Meet on Thursday January 8, 2009, Outside of a Regularly Scheduled Board Meeting

 

MOTION: to approve ORDER 09-1-7-17.

 

Fleenor MOVED, Dwyer SECONDED.

 

VOTE: 5-0.

 

 

There being no further business, Commissioner Sorenson adjourned the meeting at 3:45 p.m.

 

 

Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary