November 6, 1996
Lane County Fairgrounds - 6:00 p.m.

Chair Bobby Green called the meeting to order with Commissioners Steve Cornacchia, Ellie Dumdi and Cindy Weeldreyer present. (Jerry Rust excused.) City representatives included Stu Burge, Springfield City Council president; Marion Esty, Veneta City Councilor; Ken Hobson, Florence City Manager; Roger McCorkle, Florence Mayor; Pat Patterson, Cottage Grove City Councilor; Chuck Solin, Coburg Mayor; Laurie Swanson-Gribskov, Eugene City Council vice-president; Jan Wellman, Veneta City Administrator; and Winn Wendell, Junction City Councilor. Lane County staff present included Bill Van Vactor, County Administrator; Teresa Wilson, County Counsel; John Goodson, Public Works Director; Ollie Snowden, County Engineer; and Tanya Heaton and Rick Schulz, Management Analysts. Also present was Joe Mosely, The Register-Guard. Sharon Giles, Recording Secretary.

I. Welcome.

Bobby Green welcomed those present. He explained that, as Chair, he had suggested trying this type of a meeting in lieu of the meetings out at the individual cities. Green stated that he had hoped this would provide an opportunity for each city to hear what was going on with the other cities.

II. Introductions.

Those present introduced themselves.

III. Update/RCIC (Successes).

Weeldreyer explained the role of the Rural Community Improvement Council, remarking that it allows the opportunity for representatives from the rural communities to exchange ideas and channel concerns/comments to the Board of Commissioners. She stated that RCIC is funded through video lottery money. Weeldreyer reported that RCIC is very involved in the Northwest Economic Adjustment Initiative projects. She reviewed the report included in the packet (see material on file). Weeldreyer reported on the various subcommittees within the RCIC. She also provided an overview of the grants from Oregon Video Lottery that have been used for economic development in Lane County. Ken Hobson, RCIC member, remarked on the turnover within the group, but noted that quite a bit has been accomplished and that he feels it is very worthwhile. Burge asked about the total amount of video lottery requests. Goodson recalled that about half of the requests were granted, generally at reduced amounts. McCorkle questioned rural funds going to Eugene projects. Hobson explained that this chart also shows projects done with other funds available for the Economic Development Standing Committee. Solin observed that nine out of twelve projects listed were either in Eugene (two) or Oakridge (seven). Hobson pointed out that this is not a complete listing and Weeldreyer also noted that the former Oakridge City Administrator was an excellent grant writer. Green explained that the purpose of the list was to show how video lottery dollars are going to job creation. Solin remarked that small communities like Coburg do not have staff to work on these type of projects and that they rely on Lane County to help them through the process. Cornacchia observed that the intent is not necessarily to spread the money out around the county, but to help out where the need is greatest. He went on to explain the dire economic situation in Oakridge. Cornacchia agreed that this sheet does the program a disservice as it is not representative of the overall program. There was agreement that Stephanie Schulz would provide a more complete list to Solin.

IV. Fin Plan for Road Fund.

Rick Schulz provided the background of the spreadsheets included in the packet (see material on file). He referred to line 24 which shows historic cash carryover and how it begins to drop dramatically beginning in FY95-96. Schulz explained the process that occurred over the last two years which culminated in the version of the plan presented on the spreadsheet. He noted that lines 14 and 15 on page 2 refer specifically to road partnership funds. Cornacchia observed that over the past several years the partnership dollars were increased from $1.5 million to the present $4.5 million, explaining that this cannot continue due to a severe reduction in timber receipts. Schulz explained that cuts were also being taken within Lane County’s own operations. Cornacchia stated that the County’s own maintenance involves 1500 miles of roads, 400 bridges, 3000 miles of roadsides, etc. Responding to McCorkle, Snowden explained the difference between the two road partnership categories. Cornacchia reviewed a list of other projects, not included in the partnership dollars, that have also taken place over the past few years during a period when the County could afford to share additional funds with the cities. Patterson received clarification that the road fund money being referred to is national forest timber receipt money, which is statutorily limited to roads and schools, and not O & C dollars. Patterson asked if there was any provision to increase partnership dollars if additional monies are received. Cornacchia explained the O & C 10-year guarantee. Patterson expressed concern about the road system going "completely out the door." Cornacchia remarked that there are significant gas tax dollars in the budget. Swanson-Gribskov asked if there would be an opportunity to discuss this again if there were an increase in state gas tax. Cornacchia indicated that it would depend on the amount of increase. Swanson-Gribskov asked/suggested that the opportunity occur in any event. She also asked about upcoming intergovernmental agreements and whether they would be year-to-year or multi-year. Van Vactor stated that Goodson is attempting to draft the agreement(s) at this time. Cornacchia noted that the only bilateral agreement is for $1.5 million. Bill Van Vactor, County Administrator, indicated that the County is interested in hearing from the cities regarding their preference for year-to-year or multi-year with an amendment provision. Schulz noted that there is not yet an agreement for FY96-97 and that he would hope that the upcoming agreement would be for this year and the next year. It was suggested that the representatives go back to their cities and respond to Van Vactor, Goodson or Schulz with their preference.

Green spoke briefly about the assisted housing projects. Weeldreyer indicated that the Housing Policy Board was interested in learning of assisted housing project needs in the rural area and Cornacchia explained that the Housing Policy Board makes recommendations for funding to the Board of Commissioners. Weeldreyer noted that the Housing Policy Board is looking for a rural representative from the eastern and western portions of the County. Green explained that the monies allocated in the road fund plan for affordable housing are generally used to leverage other dollars.

Van Vactor mentioned that Line 18, the EDAP program (Economic Development Assistant Program) has been changed over to a loan program. Cornacchia remarked on the number of jobs that were created by the grant program while it was in existence.

V. Long-Range Impacts of Public Safety Coordinating Council.

Cornacchia provided the history of development of the Public Safety Coordinating Council. He explained that the legislation (SB1145) requires that the group put together a juvenile corrections plan, along with working on efforts to consolidate/coordinate the criminal justice system and all associated institutions/agencies that have to do with "public safety." Cornacchia explained that the goals are to: 1) in the metro area, determine if the present $80-90 million being spent is being used most effectively/efficiently; and 2) determine whether or not additional revenues are necessary on a county-wide basis to make a coordinated public safety system out of all the various agencies throughout the county. Cornacchia noted that the group is looking for the most efficient system across jurisdictional lines. He explained that Lane County only has a two-year levy to help fund law enforcement, thus must develop this plan during that time. Cornacchia expressed hope that jurisdictional boundaries in the metro area will be eliminated with regard to public safety, with the hope of reducing overhead. Green spoke briefly about the need for consolidation. Swanson-Gribskov noted that public safety is the number one issue for most communities. Patterson asked that the small communities, particularly the rural areas around Cottage Grove, not be forgotten in this process.

McCorkle noted that what is being done in Florence with the Justice Center is an example of this type of cooperation. Weeldreyer indicated that she has spoken with sheriff-elect Clements regarding the proposal for a special law enforcement district for rural Lane County. Van Vactor provided an update on how this proposal is progressing.

VI. Open/Input from Cities.

Patterson referred to a memorandum provided to Green from Cottage Grove City Manager, Jeff Towery, which includes thanks to the Board for various items and discussion of some Cottage Grove projects.

Swanson-Gribskov thanked the Board for their commitment to the Ferry Street Bridge. With regard to the road fund financial plan, she indicated that the "glide" process seems to be the most sensible.

McCorkle invited the commissioners to come over to see the All Events Center which was partially funded by room tax dollars. He commented that the Justice Center opening is anticipated for the end of January. McCorkle stated that he believes it is still important that the commissioners come out to the small communities, suggesting that perhaps a general meeting of this type take place to deal with the County’s major issues, with follow-up meetings at the small cities to deal with their specific issues. McCorkle noted that this time of year (fall) is good.

Wendell asked if it were possible to get some type of 190 agreement with Lane County, particularly with regard to landfill issues. He also added that it would be helpful to receive documentation on road projects. Van Vactor remarked that Lane County does voluminous intergovernmental agreements and that he anticipates continuation of that in the future.

Esty remarked that there is significant change occurring in Veneta’s city administration with the retirement of Mayor Smigley and Wellman as the new city administrator. She stated that the interface of the criminal justice system seems like an excellent idea.

Solin noted that the UGB for Eugene is just over the river from Coburg and that the metro area will include most surrounding cities within the next ten years. He expressed support for coordination of services. Solin provided a brief review of the road projects in Coburg. Cornacchia suggested that Solin contact Stephanie Schulz, RCIC Coordinator, regarding federal initiative money for the wastewater plant.

Burge agreed that this type of meeting is beneficial as many concerns and problems are similar. He stressed that everyone’s primary issue seems to be public safety/law enforcement. Burge remarked that common policing facilities, however, may not necessarily be the solution. He emphasized that the lack of ability to follow through with punishment/ incarceration is a major concern and that this erodes confidence in government. Burge also expressed support for this type of meeting, along with commission involvement in local communities.

Swanson-Gribskov offered support for dove-tailing tonight’s type of meeting with the monthly LCOG Board of Directors meeting as it includes representatives from all jurisdictions. It was suggested/requested that copies of these minutes be provided to every jurisdiction.

VII. Quick Survey regarding this type of meeting.

This discussion occurred above.

VIII. Other Business.


IX. Adjournment.

There being no further business, this meeting adjourned at 8:35 p.m.

Sharon Giles, Recording Secretary

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