BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
REGULAR MEETING
March 17, 2010
1:30 p.m.
Harris Hall Main Floor
APPROVED 7/7/2010

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

9. PUBLIC WORKS

a. STATUS REPORT/Work Group for Lane Code/Manual/Comp Plan Revisions Per Adopted Land Management Division Program and Possible Consideration of a Board Order to Establish a Code Revision Work Group.

Matt Laird, Land Management, recalled as part of the Long Range Planning Work Program, Task One, the Board previously directed Land Management staff to conduct a public stakeholder meeting to review the six issues identified by the Goal One Coalition and determine if they have merit by the Board. He noted that meeting was held on February 25 and attended by 56 people.  He said it was facilitated by the Land Management Division. He said they had six complex issues. He distributed a power point presentation that was shown to the stakeholder group. (Copy in file).

Laird explained that after analyzing all the data it was clear the first six issues identified by Goal One Coalition were generally not supported by the group that participated that night. He said some of the feedback received was that people didnít believe it was a true representation of Lane County . He indicated the four code amendments were around these themes: the need to preserve resources land; costs and timing with Measures 37 and 49 claims; frustration with the erosion of property rights;  the belief that existing standards are sufficient and that changes beyond state law are not justified. He heard the stakeholder process was bias against developers and landowners and that individual interest groups got preferential treatment  for their own agenda. He heard the meeting was well organized and staff did a good job of organizing a big group.

Laird said they need to create a smaller group that functions as a task force. He said when the small group is satisfied it could be sent to the Planning Commission. He indicated that if a stalemate is reached in a certain issue, that issue would be brought to the Board. He said they will be working on items one through six. He said they received information back from the stakeholder group requesting a timeline to submit new code amendment proposals be extended and Land Management would agree to extending to April 30. He indicated that is a question to be answered by the Board. He said the draft task force requires weekly meetings. He said staff recommends giving the small group authority and flexibility to set their own meeting schedule with the goal of meeting weekly when necessary and a deadline for completion. He said due to the frequency of meetings, it was requested that alternates would help to fill in. 

Laird thought that some of the proposed amendments will require a Measure 56 notice to all residents in the County affected by the change. He added it will be required with the riparian group. He said Land Management did one ten years ago and it cost $18,000. He said the cost now would be $25,000 and that cost is not included in their budget. He indicated a source for that would need to be found. With regard to housekeeping updates, they were considering having a meeting tomorrow, but it has been cancelled. He said there are no policy changes with that work.  He said that is going to the Planning Commission on May 18 with a target date to the Board in June. With regard to the long range work planning, he said that funding is being consumed by the code amendment process.

Fleenor concurred in extending the April 30 deadline. With regard to having an alternate to the task force, he thought it would be difficult to maintain a balance.

Stewart was in support of extending the deadline. He was supportive of having alternates.

Fleenor asked if Laird wanted to bring back the Long Range Work Plan for approval so they know where they will be losing FTEís and when they will be replaced. He asked as soon as Laird knows, to bring back a spreadsheet and they can reapprove it.

Laird said most people will be working on item 1, 3, 4, 8 and 9.

Handy was supportive of the submission deadline being extended. He approved of a smaller task force. He wanted the Board to choose alternates. He wanted to see a schedule of the work of the task force to be done at the end of May.

Laird said with regard to the task force, the order says the meeting begins April 1 and he didnít believe they have to come back to the public process to give the Boardís appointee.

Stewart thought all of this should be put into a board order for March 30.

Sorenson thought there should be two representatives per district. He thought the alternates should be designated.

Dwyer thought the second appointee would only vote in case of a tie.

Laird said there are 10 seated members, each having their own alternate, and one tie breaker and alternate to the tie breaker.

Fleenor asked if they could have a draft board order by the end of this meeting to incorporate the changes.

Laird indicated that he would work on the modifications.

Sorenson wanted to strike line 29, putting a period after the word citizen and deleting the Board Chair shall appoint the 3rd citizen and lines 30 and 31, adding the word and back in. He said they would appoint 10 people. He said all five commissioners would appoint two people.

Handy concurred with Sorensonís recommendation.

ORDER 10-3-17-17 Establishing the Lane County Land Use Task Force

MOTION: to approve ORDER 10-3-17-17, striking the last sentence of Section 3.

Dwyer MOVED, Handy SECONDED.

VOTE: 5-0.

Fleenor indicated the appointees to the Board are:  

Fleenor: Bill Kloos, Ryan Sisson
Sorenson: Jim Just, Pam Driscoll
Dwyer: Thom Lanfaer, Robert Emmons
Handy: Mia Nelson, Mike Reeder
Stewart: Mike Evans, Steve Cornacchia

10. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS

a. DISCUSSION/ACKNOWLEDGEMENT OF APPLICATION  WITHDRAWAL Ordinance No. PA 1264/In the Matter of Amending the Eugene-Springfield Metropolitan Area General Plan (Metro Plan) Land Use Diagram; Amending the Corresponding Willakenzie Area Plan Land Use Diagrams; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (Applicant: City of Eugene) (File No. PA 09-5465) (PM & NBA 9/30/09, 10/27/09, 11/10/09).

Sorenson asked if there were any suggestions on the letter that is a factual statement that the city had the public hearings in August and October. He said the city in November enacted the two city ordinances. He noted that City Ordinance 2.0444 provides the property will be automatically redesignated on the Metro Plan map. He wanted to bring this issue to the city of the Countyís concern. He said they are on record making these comments.

Stephanie Schulz, Land Management, noted that tax lot 3204 is split by the Urban Growth Boundary. She added the entire tax lot is split.

MOTION: to send the correct version of this letter to the Eugene Mayor and city council adding the language of a portion of lax lot 304.

Sorenson MOVED, Handy SECONDED.

Stewart said it was his understanding that the city council only adopted an ordinance within their city limits. He indicated that the letter is not correct because it leads him to believe the city redesignated the land outside the city limits, which would take co-adoption with the County. He is not sure if this letter is correct. His understanding is that when they had a public hearing, it was mentioned by the cityís attorney that they have the authority to make the decision without Board approval on the land in their city limits.

Richardson said it was correct that the city can pass an ordinance for their land within their own city limits. She understood there were two ordinances and only one will go into effect if the Board adopts it.

Assistant County Counsel Vorhes explained that for the two ordinances adopted by the city: one specifically addressed the property outside the city limits, inside the UGB, the portion of tax lot 304 that was the subject of the original application. He noted that ordinance has an effective date clause in it that depended on co-adoption of an identical ordinance by this Board before the property would actually be redesignated. He added the ordinance the city adopted for inside the city limits changed the designation on that property immediately and had a clause that said when the other property is annexed, it would be redesignated at that time. He said that provision did not redesignate tax lot 304. He stated that it depends on a future event.

Dwyer noted Ordinance 20445 is the ordinance the city adopted that is entirely within the city.  He said the County has no say over that. He asked what affect this had on the property owner.

Vorhes indicated the portion inside the city limits is low density residential; the portion of tax lot 304 outside the city limits, inside the UGB is still designated Parks and Open Space on the Metro Plan. He said it will only change when it is in the cityís jurisdiction.

Dwyer said when they changed the designation from low density residential to Parks and Open Space, they were sufficient in their notice. He asked how they could rezone something without deficient notice.

Stewart said this came before the Board in 2005. He said there was a process where Eugene did the work and it was couched as a housekeeping item. He indicated there were small parcels that needed to be brought up to todayís code. He said when this was brought to their attention, he said there was not notice given. He said it came to the Board and they chose not to fix the problem. He said they went through this process because someone wasnít noticed properly and a majority of the Board voted not to move forward with the fix.

Fleenor asked if there was anything in the letter that was not legally defensible.

Richardson said if she had written the letter, she would write it different. She understood that this is supposed to be a letter from the chair to the mayor. She said it is not a board order and it is not written from Legal Counsel. She stated as long as it doesnít involve the attorneys arguing the details, she would be okay with it. She added if they were doing the analysis, she would want to change the language to make it more accurate for them.

Sorenson commented that the purpose of this letter is to express the point of view that they had public hearings and most of the elected officials were under the impression that the city and the County would have to agree on this at some point.

Vorhes said if the Board wants to say they think there was a mistake, he would phrase it that way. He indicated that they werenít asked to look at the legal analysis.

VOTE: 4-1 (Stewart dissenting).

Dwyer commented that the letter is better than nothing but he didnít think it did anything for the property owner. He said they need to think about co-adopting the ordinance so there could be closure.

b. REPORT BACK/Urban Renewal District Briefing.

Spartz reported that the city of Eugene is proposing to expand its downtown urban renewal district and extend it for nine more years. He said that causes the tax base that was frozen 42 years ago to remain frozen and the development that has occurred in the district since then has been captured to pay the costs of whatever bonds that were issued on the district.  e said it is an issue that is a bone of contention between counties and cities nationally. He indicated that since it is an existing district, the County can object to the proposed expansion but they have no legal authority to stop the plan that Eugene is discussing. He said the Board needs to state the objections and they can be forwarded to the city.  He said it doesnít require them to modify the plan.

Sorenson asked if sending materials to them meant consulting and conferring with the Board. He asked what they are supposed to do.

Richardson said she hasnít found a definition for consulting and to confer. She presumed some sort of communication occurs. She said they are supposed to take into consideration the other bodiesí objections or comments. She hadnít seen any formal request from the city. She said they would review their proposal and respond back on a particular date.

Sorenson asked if they should send a letter by Legal Counsel to get a formal request that they have received the proposal and they have a period of consultation and conferring. He didnít believe sending them this is sufficient to confer and consult and they expect a full consultation and conference so questions could be addressed.

Richardson was in agreement. She said they should ask the city if the submission of the initial request means that the Board should start consulting and conferring.

Sorenson asked what this means to Lane County and the amount of money they might lose.

Spartz responded the effect is the property that was taken off the tax roles will continue to be off the tax roles for a period of time. He said the improvements the city is making is infrastructure and public improvements and that doesnít add to the tax base.

Handy wanted to look at what resources they have to make a recommendation. He wanted to give Anette Spickard, Assessor, direction to answer questions once they review what they received. He said they want to have a broader work session. He said they want to register their concerns. He said they were looking at the years 2003-2009 for the $1.2 million that has been removed from the general fund due to this urban renewal district. He noted there is a one time refund of over taxes collected. He wanted Spickard to look into that. He added they have an annual loss of $157,000 per year impact on Lane County . He wanted a consultation and dialogue. He asked what is needed to get the information they need.

Spartz thought if the Board schedules a work session, there is sufficient direction to do this. He said they should talk to John Ruiz, city of Eugene , to find out when he is planning to put this before the city council before final approval.

Dwyer asked what the Boardís expectation was. He commented that they donít control the city council. He said the only thing that will help them is a legislative change that requires the Countyís consent if they are going to be losing money.

Stewart thought it would be advisable for Spartz to see if this was in the Countyís best interest. He said when they get the information they will find out why the city wants to do this. He thought it would show that it would be justified and that it will create many jobs and it will expand services that will be beneficial to the citizens, more than what the County would lose. He thought they should review the information before they make comments.

Dwyer objected to the process that allows the city to take away the Countyís revenue with its consent.

Stewart recommended that Alex Cuyler, Intergovernmental Relations Manager, be directed to work on legislation to change the bill.

Richardson said their timeline has March 12 to notify the taxing districts that amendments are proposed and to let them know of the proposed hearing date. She said the mailing last week was intended to start it. She added the city is having a work session on the Countyís recommendation on May 10.

Spickard stated that all items raised today were things she noted to be brought back. She said she has to do it for all entities to develop correct numbers. Her goal is to bring information back that the Board could use for a letter to be sent to the city so they have the factual information. She recalled in HB3056 that was passed in the 2009 session, that this law was the result of the work. She noted Section 10 is the bulk of the changes and they put in stronger wording around counties. She said if the plan is substantially amended to increase maximum indebtedness by $343 million, where the city is talking about $15 million or $35 million, then they are required to make a payment to the county involved. She said new language was put in for county payment requirements but it was geared toward the Portland area. She said it was too small for Eugene .

c. ORDER 10-3-17-16/In the Matter of Entering Into a Memorandum of Understanding to Establish the Southern Oregon Energy Alliance (SOCEA).

Stewart explained that this is the Southern Oregon Clean Energy Alliance Memorandum of Understanding being proposed for Lane County to join with Coos, Curry, Douglas and Josephine counties. He recalled in their conversation yesterday there was direction to prepare changes to what was being proposed in the order and providing an attachment that Alex Cuyler, Intergovernmental Relations Manager, redrafted for the changes being recommended. He said the adjunct memorandum will be if the board order is approved, it directs him to bring this before the SOCEA group and try to get the item adopted into the current Memorandum of Understanding. He read a paragraph that was added.

MOTION: to approve ORDER 10-3-17-16.

Dwyer MOVED, Stewart SECONDED.

Sorenson said he wanted to keep Lane County ís issues in front of the group. He said they shouldnít approve this and ask Stewart to make the proposal. He asked about a sunset on their approval. He said he doesnít want to stand in the way of the application. He thought they should go ahead and do it today.

Stewart responded the there is a one year timeline with a 30 day opt out clause. He recommended that if the Board agrees with this, he will report to the SOCEA Board and give them the feedback and if it doesnít meet the majority of the Board, then they pass an order after 30 days saying the Board of Commissioners doesnít want to be a member.

Handy was concerned when they talk about building collaborative relationships that they have other counties who are moving ahead with assumptions about what Lane County might do. He said he would be comfortable with a modest addition to the original draft being reviewed by the other partners. He was comfortable with what Cuyler did. He didnít agree with the idea of an adjunct MOU. He thought the other partners should address their issues head on in a timely way.    He said he would be comfortable approving the adjunct MOU and the board order and to leave out the original Attachment A. He is a no on the motion stated.

Stewart said he heard Handyís concerns as being valid. He said this process has been going on for two years and they had the discussions at this Board previously.  He has tried to represent the issues to get them included and he will continue to do that.  He said as they see the federal government issuing ARRA dollars and promoting jobs, the larger a collaborative they can have, the better it will be. He thought they should take the opportunity when they can. He said if the majority of the Board doesnít want to move forward, he would be okay with it. But he thought it was important and he thought they should be part of this.

Sorenson wanted to see them approve this to get the cooperation with the other counties. He agreed with Handy that the other counties need to be in a leadership position with Lane County and pursue some of their objectives. 

Fleenor thought it was important to be at the table during the initial phases of the inception of this process. He didnít think it was in their interest to hold hostage this program because it will send a negative message to their collaborative partners. He thought the message they should send is they are willing to take the first step on a good faith basis. He wanted a report back to let the Board know how the collaborative is going. He will support this. He wanted to amend the motion that number one should be Attachment A and reflect that it is a board order.

Dwyer accepted as a friendly amendment.

VOTE: 4-1 (Handy dissenting).

11. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS 

Sorenson attended a program on compassionate care and the Oregon Death with Dignity Law.

Handy reported that tomorrow there will be a meeting on the Area Commission on Transportation. He thought it was wise for the Board to engage with the small cities who are interested in forming an ACT. He said they are near the proposed end and they have scheduled a subcommittee meeting to resolve some of the outstanding issues. He reported that David Suchart has been working on getting the Charnelton Building ready.

Stewart noted LCOG received an award of $8.3 million for broadband improvement. He said he has been part of this effort and it has been a ten year process to get to this point.

Fleenor announced that he is having a community dialogue at the Moose Lodge tomorrow in Junction City .

12. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660

Per ORS 192.660(2)(h) for potential litigation

13. OTHER BUSINESS

None.

There being no further business, Commissioner Fleenor recessed the meeting into Executive Session at 3:45 p.m. 

Melissa Zimmer
Recording Secretary