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April 22, 1998
REGULAR MEETING BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS
Harris Hall Main Floor 1:30 p.m.

Commissioner Steve Cornacchia called to order the April 22, 1998, meeting of the Lane County Board of Commissioners at 1:35 p.m. with Commissioners Ellie Dumdi, Bobby Green, Sr., and Peter Sorenson present. Commissioner Weeldreyer excused. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson, and Recording Secretary C. Daniel Lindstrom were also present.

Commissioner Cornacchia re-convened the meeting at 1:35 p.m.

16. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

Commissioner Dumdi announced that the week of April 20 was designated as Secretaries Week. She and the other commissioners expressed appreciation to those who performed secretarial tasks for the County.

17. PUBLIC HEARINGS

a.  SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance PA 1110/In the Matter of Amending the Rural Comprehensive Plan to Redesignate Land from "Agriculture" to "Marginal Land" and Rezoning that Land from "E-40/Exclusive Farm Use" to "ML/Marginal Land"; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (file PA 1480-97; Waterbury).

Commissioner Cornacchia read Ordinance PA 1110 by title and explained that the board was to hold an evidentiary hearing on it. He determined that no commissioner had a conflict of interest or had had ex parte contacts regarding the matters concerned.

Mr. Copely presented the staff report regarding the amendment application. He reviewed the character of the request, issues involved, alternatives available, and stated that staff recommended that the ordinance be adopted. He explained that the Planning Commission had been unable to come to a formal recommendation regarding the ordinance. He suggested that reasons the commission was unable to do so were bylaws then in effect and because new members may not have fully comprehended the role of the commission.

Commissioner Cornacchia opened the public hearing.

Al Couper, 2258 Harris Street, Eugene, stated that he represented the applicants. He said that his clients agreed with the recommendation of staff to approve the application.

Mr. Couper addressed issues raised by consideration of the application by the Lane County Planning Commission. He suggested that members had difficulty in differentiating between legislation and application of existing laws. He said that concerns raised about urbanization were not applicable and that location of the proposed development was mistakenly identified as an issue.

In response to a question from Commissioner Green, Mr. Couper said that the lack of opposition to the application was indication that water limitation was a concern to area residents.

In response to a question from Commissioner Sorenson, Mr. Couper said that income and productivity tests, combined with tests to determine the type of soils on the property in question were the only analyses required for the application to be approved.

Ralph Christensen, 2535B Prairie Road, Eugene, stated that he was a hydrogeologist associated with Engineering and Geologic Resources (ERG) & Associates, Inc., which had performed the aquifer pump and recovery test for the property in question, as required by the Lane Code for zone changes. He said the purpose of the test was to determine if there was sufficient water supply for the proposed development and to determine its impact on surrounding aquifer users. He said a well log analysis had also been used to estimate impact on neighboring properties. He stated that his tests had convinced him there was sufficient water available for the proposed development.

In response to questions from Commissioners Sorenson and Green, Mr. Christensen stated that he had used statistical evidence to reach his conclusion that there was adequate water available for domestic use on lots of the projected size. He said 350-500 gallons/day of water was considered adequate for homes of 2,000 square feet.

Commissioner Cornacchia determined there was no one else present wishing to speak and closed the public hearing.

Commissioner Green said that he supported the recommendation of staff and suggested it might be appropriate to discuss "philosophical" preconceptions of members of the Planning Commission.

Commissioner Dumdi stated that she agreed with Commissioner Green. She said she did not believe the proposed development put an undue strain on public services or available water in the area.

Commissioner Sorenson stated that he believed the income, productivity, and water tests supported the application.

MOTION: to adopt Ordinance PA 1110.

Commissioner Dumdi MOVED, Commissioner Sorenson SECONDED.

ROLL CALL VOTE: 4-0.

b.  SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance No. 2-98/In the Matter of Amending Chapters 10 and 16 of Lane Code to Revise Provisions With Regard to the Floodplain Combining District (/FP) and the Floodplain Combining Zone (/FP/RCP) (LC 10.271 And 16.244) and Declaring An Emergency.

Mr. Copely stated that the purpose of the proposed ordinance was to bring Lane Code floodplain standards into compliance with State Building Code provisions.

In response to a question from Commissioner Sorenson, Mr. Copely explained that it would not be possible for Lane County to establish more strict floodplain standards than those provided in the building code.

Commissioner Cornacchia opened the public hearing. He determined there was no one present wishing to testify and closed the public hearing.

MOTION: to adopt Ordinance 2-98.

Commissioner Green MOVED, Commissioner Dumdi SECONDED.

ROLL CALL VOTE: 4-0.

18. OTHER BUSINESS

Public Works

a. REPORT BACK/Status Report on Hearing Schedule and Proposed Amendments to LC 16.210 for the F-1 Zone Concerning Whether or Not to Allow New Dwellings.

Public Works Land Management Planner Kent Howe introduced a status report on proposed amendments to the Lane Code for the F-1 Zone, Non-Impacted Forest Land. He discussed posted maps showing rural fire protection districts in the County and property zoned F-1. He reviewed actions of other Oregon counties regarding proposed rules concerning whether to allow new dwellings in the F-1 Zone.

Land Use Planning Senior Planner Jim Mann distributed copies of a document entitled "BCC F-1 Dwelling Checklist" and suggested that it could be used as a guide for decision making by commissioners. He reviewed options available and an analysis of potential new dwelling criteria in the F-1 Zone.

An additional packet of material was distributed containing documents related to a 160-acre template test, fuel break standards, and fire protection foam systems. The documents were reviewed. A video was shown of a demonstration of the RRU-500 Class-A Foam Fire Fighting Unit.

Lane County Building Official Roger McGuckin distributed copies of a document containing questions and answers regarding the cost of water reservoirs and residential sprinkler systems. He reviewed the information contained in the document.

Oregon Fire Marshal George Crosier discussed the services of rural fire protection districts to residents within and outside district boundaries. In response to questions from commissioners he expressed the opinion that it would be better to permit new dwellings in F-1 zoned property only when the property was within a rural fire protection district. He said his opinion did not imply that a dwelling outside such a district was not safe it if had appropriate fire suppression equipment. He also said fire risk deed restrictions were helpful for education purposes, but were on shaky ground if challenged in court.

Commissioner Sorenson said he believed the difficulty in determining boundaries of rural fire protection districts complicated the issue of whether new dwellings in the F-1 Zone should be limited to the districts. He said he supported doing so.

Commissioner Dumdi expressed concern about hardships the proposal of Commissioner Sorenson would impose on owners of property not located within a district.

Commissioner Green said that his opinion could be influenced by additional information regarding the efficacy of fire sprinkler systems. He said he did not favor requiring foam fire suppression systems.

Commissioner Cornacchia suggested that the board should postpone a decision regarding issues involved with new dwellings in the F-1 Zone until Commissioner Weeldreyer could participate in the deliberations. He said he believed an additional meeting would be needed. He also said he had moved beyond prohibiting dwellings in the zone.

Mr. Howe suggested that commissioners could make a decision about whether to allow new dwellings on 200 acre noncontiguous tracts. Commissioner Cornacchia determined there was consensus to postpone any decision until a meeting when all commissioners were present.

Commissioner Cornacchia recommended that commissioners retain all information they had received regarding the item.

19. REGIONAL PARTNERSHIP

Commissioner Cornacchia referred to a memorandum from Commissioner Weeldreyer dated April 21, 1998, regarding a recommendation that Lane County request to be designated as a pilot in the newly organized Regional Partnership Program of the State of Oregon distributed at the beginning of the afternoon session of the meeting. He said he would have preferred to have received a packet of background material and additional information about the program.

Commissioner Sorenson stated that Lane Council of Governments (LCOG) had invited the Board of County Commissioners to a meeting on April 16 with the Regional Strategies Team of Governor Kitzhaber. He said the uniqueness of the recommendation was prompted by the request of the governor for decisions about pilots in the Regional Strategy Program be made by April 30. He said the major issue regarding the recommendation was whether Lane County should apply to be a pilot on its own, or as part of a consortium several counties.

LCOG Economic Development and Business Financing Senior Planner Jim Zelenka stated that he had prepared the memorandum under consideration and that it had been drafted under his direction and contained his analysis of the April 16 meeting.

Lane County Management Analyst Tanya Heaton distributed copies of a file note she had prepared regarding the Regional Partnership proposal. She reviewed her observations regarding the April 16 meeting, noting that the recommendation of those attending the meeting was to apply for pilot status and to focus on Lane County alone in the request.

Ms. Heaton pointed out that her file note contained questions asked at the meeting for which information had since been gathered. She suggested that commissioners raise the questions with Mr. Zelenka.

Commissioner Cornacchia asked a series of questions regarding the meaning, purpose, and potential results of participating as a pilot in the Regional Partnership Program. Mr. Zelenka replied that the program was an attempt to place special focus on regional transitions; provide better targets for State investments; involve regional partners in targeting of the investments; and would utilize resources of the Economic Development Department, Department of Transportation, Department of Environmental Quality, Community Development Block Grant program, HOME program, Northwest Timber Initiatives program, and land conservation programs. He said specific results of partnerships were not identified since each would be unique.

Ms. Heaton said that funding for establishing pilots in the program was development of the concept.

Commissioner Cornacchia stated that he appreciated cooperative efforts and was comfortable with accepting the recommendation because of the public process which had brought it about.

Commissioner Green said that issues involved in the recommendation were important, but that he believed there were concerns regarding the use of County staff. He said he would accept the recommendation.

Commissioner Sorenson said that he believed there was a risk in not applying for pilot status in the Regional Partnership Program was that the County, nonprofit agencies, and other local governments would not be eligible for available economic development support.

Commissioner Cornacchia determined there was consensus for Lane County to seek recognition as a pilot in the Regional Partnership Program before April 30.

20. EXECUTIVE SESSION

None.

21. EMERGENCY BUSINESS

a.  ORDER 98-4-22-23/In the Matter of Settling Claims of Dorothy Crapes.

County Counsel Teresa Wilson distributed copies of and described Order 98-4-22-23 as discussed in the executive session.

MOTION: to approve Order 98-4-22-23.

Commissioner Dumdi MOVED, Commissioner Green SECONDED.

VOTE: 4-0.

The meeting was adjourned at 4:05 p.m.

C. Daniel Lindstrom, Recording Secretary

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