BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS' WORK SESSION
May 28, 2002
Commissioners' Conference Room
Commissioner Bill Dwyer presided with Commissioners Bobby Green, Sr., Anna Morrison and Peter Sorenson present. Cindy Weeldreyer was present via telephone. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA
2. PUBLIC COMMENTS
Dale Miller, spoke on the River Road improvements. He said that Public Works was in agreement for sidewalks on the east side only. He agreed and thought a left turn lane on River Road would alleviate some of the safety problems but didn’t think the left turn lane was needed on Beacon. He thanked the Board for listening to the residents and property owners.
Virginia Claussen, passed out a letter. (Copy in file). She stated she was a member of the Mental Health Advisory Board. She noted there was a reduction in the Children’s Mental Health Clinic in Lane County. She stated as of January 2002, the clinic served over 500 families and because of budget reductions, 80 families were terminated from the clinic in March. She commented if the proposed cuts stay in the budget, another 80 families would be terminated in July. She said the add package of a 1.0 FTE Mental Health Specialist position would keep the next 80 families from being cut.
Jim Seaburry, Santa Clara, said he is with an organization called the Santa Clara River Road Property Owners Association and due to recent events, their membership and supporters had grown to over 600 homes. He said they don’t want Santa Clara Elementary School to close. He asked the Board if there was a way to make it into a County Community Center with a library and Sheriff’s substation.
Jerry Ritter, Oregon Communities for a Voice in Annexation, 1865 Yolanda, Springfield, expressed thanks to Weeldreyer for her representation in their neighborhood. He asked the Board to take a stand to oppose any annexation of any urban growth boundary area by ORS 195 combined vote provision.
Nancy Lee Cox, P. O. Box 1149, Eugene, spoke in support of the mentally ill. She said that cutting needed supervision shifts the cost to the police, hospitals and the jails and they are overflowing.
Darlene Goss, Beacon House, noted that most of the neighbors are for the River Road improvement. She wanted the Board to direct Public Works to do whatever it takes to preserve the area and consider property owners first. She commented that the area and people are too important to steamroll.
Dawn Leslie, 4495 River Road, thanked the Board for listening to concerns and implementing compromise solutions. She recommended the sidewalk construction be postponed until it is needed. She encouraged the Board to let the center turn lane begin at the section of trees in order to preserve the character of the neighborhood.
Ronnie Carper, thanked the Public Works employees for listening and working with the property owners. He concurred with Sorenson on postponing this decision for six months to achieve greater consensus. He said the neighbors want to participate in the process. He said they weren’t opposed to the development. He said removing 17 trees would have a large impact.
Bob Vaughn, 30590 W. Beacon, Junction City, was happy that Public Works wasn’t going to put left turn lanes on Beacon Drive. He didn’t think sidewalks were needed at this time.
3. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE
Sorenson commented the votes are in from the election and Tom Lininger will join the Board. He also congratulated Morrison and Dwyer on their re-election.
Weeldreyer echoed Sorenson on the election results.
Dwyer thanked all the voters who voted for him.
4. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660
5. PUBLIC WORKS
a. REPORT BACK/Continued Discussion and Selection of Project Design Concept for Improvement of River Road MP 7.747 to MP 7.366. (NBA & PM 4/16/02)
Sonny Chickering, Public Works, reported that on April 16 the River Road design concept was discussed with a Public Hearing. He noted they had an initial meeting in the River Road area and the Roads Advisory Committee adopted a recommended design concept. He added that it was sent out to abutting property owners for additional comment. He noted there was an objection from more than 50% of the abutting property owners and they had the Public Hearing on April 16. He said on April 16 the Board was unable to agree on a design concept and staff revisited the project. He said they did an additional analysis of the design and visited with property owners. He asked the Board to discuss the design concept. He noted that Exhibit A (copy in file) was a menu explaining the different features of the project. He noted Attachment B (copy in file) contained three drawings that represented the Roads Advisory recommendation, staff recommendation and the property owner’s preference.
Chickering said, as far as truncating the process and making a decision, instead of further conversations with the property owners, staff was trying to work within the public input process in Lane Code and Lane Manual to hold a public hearing on behalf of the Roads Advisory Committee. He said they would take the information from that hearing to the Roads Advisory Committee, have them select a design concept and recommend that to the Board. He noted in this case there was more than 50% of the neighbors objecting so they held the required hearing.
Green asked how they planned on managing traffic without the light signals.
Chickering responded their recommendation is that the traffic control at that intersection remains as it is today, with stop control on the two minor legs and through traffic on River Road.
Morrison asked about the difference in cost between the flashing beacon and a regular light.
Ed Chastain, Public Works, noted the beacon could be operated with an electric timer that turns a light on and off but a traffic signal needs a computer controller plus all of the hardware to turn the appropriate lights on and off. He added a conflict monitor would be needed to make sure opposing greens are not on at the same time. He said putting a flasher up would cost about $30,000, whereas a traffic signal is $150,000.
Morrison supported the first concept. She thought they could move forward with this and whatever the Board agreed upon should be they way they proceed.
Dwyer stated they had made exceptions to the sidewalk widths in other projects the County had done. He preferred reducing the sidewalks that impact the trees to four feet instead of five. He said even though for current standards the traffic signal is not warranted, there would be a need because of the development that is taking place. He wanted to put in the traffic signal at the same time they do the project.
Chickering asked each commissioner to fill out a menu about the needs of the neighbors. He said he would collect them, tally the results and report back with a design that reflects that vote.
b. ON THE RECORD HEARING/Hearing Arguments on an Appeal of a Hearings Official's Decision Denying an Application for a Home Occupation and Temporary Permit for a Special Event/Wedding Facility within the Rural Residential Zone (RR-10) (file PA 01-5803 & PA 01-5804/Neumann). (NBA & PM 4/17/02)
Thom Lanfear, Land Management, reported this application was brought in front of the Board on April 17 and at that meeting they heard arguments from both sides of the application. He prepared a supplemental memo that reviews the information that was submitted at the meeting. He noted both sides submitted additional information.
Dwyer stated the hearing calls for testimony for the purpose of a meeting of the Board of Commissioner and deliberation. He asked if there were any ex-parte contacts by any members of the Board.
There were none.
Dwyer noted the Board needed to decide if they go on the record or if they allow supplemental material into the record. Dwyer stated they need to make a tentative decision to continue the matter for deliberation. He said if they make a decision, they might direct the prevailing party to prepare an order and findings.
Lanfear explained the issues presented in this appeal revolve around approval or denial of a home occupation or temporary use. He stated the home occupation permit is to cover the parts of the proposal that would take place inside a structure. He added the temporary use permit is for portions of the operation that occur outside of any structure. He noted the hearing’s official issued a denial on compatibility issues regarding whether the use would interfere with existing uses on adjacent properties or whether it would affect the livability of the surrounding vicinity. He added those issues revolve around noise and traffic in the vicinity along Hall Road. He noted the second primary issue was whether the criteria had been adequately addressed by the applicant on whether the operation would be operated in a dwelling, mobile home or other buildings normally associated with permitted uses in a residential zone. He stated there is an existing structure that had been built and the applicant proposes to use that. He noted the hearing’s official found that the record wasn’t complete to address that issue.
Morrison disagreed with the hearings official. She favored reversing the hearing official’s decision.
Weeldreyer concurred with Morrison.
MOTION: to move that the Board reverse the hearing official’s decision in allowing the home occupation temporary permits for special events.
Morrison MOVED, Green SECONDED.
Sorenson stated he would vote to uphold the hearings official. He said the home occupation rule is one that allows people to conduct certain limited activity on the property.
Stephen Vorhes, Assistant County Counsel, stated that tentative action included direction to prepare findings and an order reflecting the conditions the Board wanted to specifically include.
Morrison thought there should be conditions given with regard to the approval or reversal of this. She said they could limit the number of months and participants.
Dwyer said they would vote on a motion and give direction to staff to work with those people to draft the conditions that would address the conflicts.
Weeldreyer was supportive of that.
Vorhes explained the Board could express how they want the process to occur but if the Board’s decision is to uphold the appeal and reverse the hearing’s officials ruling, that could be directed to the applicants to prepare an order and findings and appropriate conditions. He said part of the process of getting it back to the Board includes providing copies to the other parties. He noted what comes back to the Board is a draft of an order with comments and review before they adopt the final order.
Weeldreyer was in agreement, but wanted the findings to come back no later than 60 days.
VOTE: 3-2 (Sorenson, Dwyer, dissenting).
Dwyer stated the applicant would prepare the conditions so the other side had an opportunity to respond to the findings. He added it would be brought to the Board for final action.
Weeldreyer noted there were two different hearing officials in the process. She said there were directions given to the applicant by county staff at different times to view other models that had been approved for those activities in a rural area of Lane County. She believed the record showed that the applicant followed all of the directions and was still denied. She thought it was an appropriate home office activity.
Sorenson said that home occupation is a good thing and it helps with the development of the community. He said it was a concept that allows for a business usage of a residential property and when the business usage overtakes the residential usage, then the proper thing to do would go to a process of getting the zone change so the activity and full impact could be weighed and the application could be processed using the true impacts on the property. He voted no because of the issue of home occupancy.
Dwyer said that zoning and the current use had to be considered. He agreed with Sorenson that if they want this type of facility, they have to think about the appropriate zoning. He was hopeful the conditions would reduce the conflicts so if it could be shown that the conflicts could be reduced to the point where they are not significant, that he might agree in the future.
c. ORDER 02-5-28-1/In the Matter of Adopting Amendments to the Work Tasks and Timelines for the Approved Work Program for the Periodic Review of the Rural Comprehensive Plan.
Jim Mann, Land Managements\, explained the purpose of the changes in the periodic review work program is primarily to adjust the timelines because they fell behind a year and a half. He said part of that was due to the delay caused by Ballot Measure 7. He said the timeline wouldn’t lengthen the overall completion date, it would be adjusted more to reflect that they had completed the community plan for the McKenzie Watershed and the Goal 14 compliance work outside of the communities. He added they also reflect the next area that would go into the community plans, the Coastal and Siuslaw Watershed area. He said that would be flexible if the Board found another priority. He noted that was the order of the work projects. He requested the Board formally adopt the modifications in the work program. He stated there is a process they are going through with the state where they formally acknowledge the work they had done. He noted they received some appeals of the County’s adoption of the requirements and the state is looking at those appeals.
Mann stated the other issue is that with the current funding they have with the planning program, they would fund 1.5 positions for long range planning. He said there is one full time position that is his and the half positions are bits and pieces of the others. He said that means when they commit to the timeline for the periodic review, they have limited ability to do the other projects.
Kent Howe, Land Management, noted the items on the second page of the cover memo (copy in file) identify a number of issues the Board gave Land Management. He noted they would not be able to get to them unless additional resources were found. He said there are a number of things they have to do and until they can come up with additional resources, it would have to be deferred. He stated they would keep focused on the mandated periodic review.
Morrison stated she didn’t support some of the items under number 2. She thought it was premature because of what they want to do with the whole Land Management Department and how they would allocate resources.
Mann noted they changed the timelines for completing the community plans and the McKenzie Watershed to June 30, 2002. He explained that when LCDC reviews their request against the adopted work program, they would have made the timelines within the work program and received the signoff. He added in order to get Lane County to get the work through LCDC, they have to adjust the timelines.
Sorenson asked what Lane County hadn’t done that they are required to do.
Mann responded Lane County needed a community plan outside the McKenzie Watershed.
Dwyer reiterated that Land Management had limited resources and they have to do what is the most important.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 02-5-28-1.
Green MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
6. MANAGEMENT SERVICES
a. ORDER 02-5-28-2/In the Matter of Lane County Diversity and Human Rights Programs.
James Mattiace, Chair, Lane County Human Rights Advisory Committee, gave a presentation of the Lane County Diversity and Human Rights Programs. (Copy in file).
Sorenson asked what the difference was between the Diversity Education Committee and the Human Rights Advisory Committee.
Mattiace responded the Diversity Education Committee was a committee that Laura Yergan, Management Services, put together in-house. He said the focus of the Human Rights Advisory Committee is more community outreach. He added the Diversity Education Committee doesn’t field any harassment complaints.
Dwyer requested the Board have a copy of the report of the Diversity Education Committee.
Yergan noted that every initiative in the plan had either been addressed or is ongoing. She said they want to go to a Phase 2 for Lane County. She said the goal is to integrate diversity throughout so it is a part of all County functions.
Dwyer asked if Lane County’s overall goal was to have the County employment base reflect the actual make up of the community.
Yergan responded that Lane County’s goal is to have its workforce as one piece of diversity and to reflect the community it’s serving. She said it provides more effective service to the community. She said if that is the community they are serving, they want to reflect that so they can relate to the community and provide for effective services identified through the diversity plan. She added that overall the County continues to improve on work force diversity.
Dwyer asked what the budgetary implications were with adoption of Phase 2.
Yergan said it was no different than Phase 1.
Yergan thought it was important for each department to have a diversity group or committee that helps initiate their diversity goals as part of their strategic plan. She thought it was important to have managers and supervisors trained in how important diversity is. She said without the message from them diversity would be less than effective as they look to Phase 2.
Greta Utecht reiterated that for the Phase 1 of the Diversity Implementation Plan most of the items had been completed or are ongoing. She stated they had made progress on the diversity revisions. She added the County Strategic Plan discusses the aspects of diversity. She said they have both the Human Rights Advisory Committee and the County Diversity Education Committee and moving ahead on the different initiatives. She said they need more interaction with the Board to let them know what is going on. She stated that both the Human Rights Advisory Committee and Diversity Education Committee had taken different directions and focus. She noted with the external focus, the commitment and energy is there. She added they were less knowledgeable about what is internal to the County. She noted the City of Eugene has 3.5 FTE devoted to Human Rights and 1.0 FTE devoted to their diversity program where Lane County doesn’t have any FTE devoted to it. She said the initiatives need to be approved by both groups. She noted on April 22, the Human Rights Advisory Committee had a work session and developed two options for resolving the resource benchmark. She said they needed to provide impact to human rights affirmative action. She stated that Option 1 was to redefine the Human Rights Committee and Diversity Education Committee. She said the Human Rights Diversity Committee would expand its focus on community education and outreach and the Community Education Committee would take over Phase 2 plan initiative and in order to get the external feedback into what they are doing internally into County, to get stakeholders to the group. She added that the human rights complaints would continue to go to Yergan and she would keep a database and compile the statistics. She stated they would also make changes to the Lane Manual and the bylaws to reflect the changes in priorities and to add .5 FTE to support the diversity program and the Human Rights Advisory Committee. She noted one of the add packages going to the Budget Committee is .5 FTE for the Diversity Program and .5 FTE for training and development. She noted the second option is to redefine the roles of both committees, but the Human Rights Advisory Committee would maintain a more limited focus on what they are doing on community education and outreach. She stated the Diversity Education Committee would take on the Phase 2 plan initiative. She sees a higher role for the Diversity Education Committee and a more defined focus role for the Human Rights Advisory Committee.
Utecht suggested a survey in the communities of color in order to get a sense of what people see as barriers.
Morrison commented that once they go through the budget process and they know where they are at, they need to revisit the work plan to point out what the Board thinks is most important, considering resources and staff.
Wilson explained the issue would be what the Board wants the committee to do.
7. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
8. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD
9. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
10. EMERGENCY BUSINESS
There being no further business Commissioner Dwyer recessed the meeting at 12:00 p.m.