BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'

REGULAR MEETING

December 8, 2004

1:30 p.m.

Commissioners' Conference Room

APPROVED 1/19/05

 

Commissioner Bobby Green, Sr., presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer and Anna Morrison present.Peter Sorenson was present via telephone.Don Hampton was excused. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.

 

#13. PUBLIC HEARINGS

 

a. PUBLIC HEARING AND ORDER 04-12-8-5/In the Matter of Reaffirming the Design Concept for Bernhardt Heights Road, Adopted by the Board December 4, 2002 by Order Number 02-12-4-2, and Approving a Modified Alignment and Cost Estimate, and Reporting on Status of the Project.

 

Sonny Chickering, Public Works, reported that in December 2002 the Board completed a lengthy process of reviewing alternatives for repairs for Bernhardt Heights Road and they did adopt a design concept that provides for construction of a new alignment instead of a repair of the existing alignment.He recalled the Board made that decision based on staff recommendations and other testimony.He commented that the local residents would have preferred that they perform work on the existing alignment instead of the new alignment that was approved.He noted in August 2004 County staff received a petition signed by a majority of the local residents on Bernhardt Heights Road asking for the Board to reconsider their decision and to return staffís activity back to repairing the existing alignment.He thought it was important to bring the information back to the Board to reconsider the prior design concept approval and reaffirm it or give other direction.

 

Chickering indicated concurrently they have been working ahead and making progress on the design of the new alignment.He noted during the development process they have discovered a better route.He asked the Board to either reaffirm or redirect staff efforts.

 

Bill Morgan, Public Works, indicated there are three parts of written testimony.He noted they had updated Exhibit A that is in the supplemental packet.

 

Chickering noted that staff was recommending that if the Board elects to reaffirm their direction to pursue a new alignment that they modify the other approved project.

 

Chickering noted in the Board packet they had outlined several options.He noted one would be isolated repairs on the existing road as suggested by the resident petition, the second would be to reconstruct the existing alignment to County standards, the third would be to fix the slide along the roadway and change the road status to local access road.He said if that were to be approved, the County would not do routine and regular road maintenance.He said they also included an option to fix the slide and vacate the road and the County would not be involved from that point forward.He added they could cancel the project and redirect the money that had been set aside to other priorities and continue maintenance of the existing alignment.

 

Commissioner Green opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Wendell Morse, a property owner on Bernhardt Heights.Said the road would go through his property.His concern is that there is an area by the end of his property that is part of a windbreak.He thought he would be affected and wanted assurances that he would have some protection put in or built around the area if that option were taken into consideration.

 

Deborah Peterson, stated she sent an e-mail.She thought Options 1, 2 and 3 were fine.

 

Loueene Harvey, stated she likes the current road even though there are problems with it.She noted there was one part of the road that was steep by the BPA that if there is frost in the morning they could possibly go through the guardrail.She added that part of the road is steeper than any other part of Bernhardt Heights Road.She asked how that problem would be dealt with.

 

Elisa Gray, spoke on behalf of herself and her husband.She noted a neighbor had been a speaker for her and that was not correct.She wanted a safe road.They preferred the current road.She was concerned about the BPA steep road with ice on it.She didnít think the current road had to be two lanes.

 

James McCartney, stated he lives with the Morse family.He commented the BPA road is steeper than their road.He wanted to keep the original road.

 

Keith Stanton, stated he represents Arthur Perkins, 7681 Bernhardt Heights Road, and forwarded comments to the Board.He said the gravel road had been there for over 100 years and he suggested leaving it as is.†† He thought the cost of maintaining the new road is about $5,300 per year.He said in the materials provided by Public Works he extracted the County information for the maintenance of the road and it would only cost $4,800.He noted the new road would cost more to maintain.With regard to the existing road, he noted there is concern for safety and if they could get guardrails and more cut into the road it would be better.He said if they were looking to improve the safety and the maintenance of the road, it could be done incrementally.He noted the new road was actually steeper than the current one.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Commissioner Green closed the Public Hearing.

 

Dwyer asked about the steepness of the BPA road and the guardrail.

 

Chickering responded that the BPA road is steeper.He noted it is in a shadow for long periods of time.He noted there is an existing guardrail.He said they have the opportunity to put on anti-icing chemicals.He said they run the risk with the existing road and think it would be safer to have the new roadway.

 

Morrison didnít support Option 5, 6 and 7.By Option 3, she thought they would continue to have problems with the road as it will continue to shift and have slide situations take place.She thought the modified alignment for the road would cut the cost from what they had originally approved and it makes it shorter.†† She supported Option 2, the modified alignment.

 

MOTION: to move approval of modified alignment, Option 2 at $330,000.

 

Morrison MOVED, Green SECONDED.

 

Green commented they needed to do what is best for safety.He wasnít comfortable doing the least amount of work but he favored Option 2.

 

Dwyer stated he would feel better if they had some way to raise the guardrail so the driverís donít go over the side.

 

Chickering indicated the project as proposed will be constructed and any work with the guardrail would be in addition to what was shown today.He said they could replace the guardrail.He indicated the majority of the alignment would not meet County standards.He added the $330,000 does not include any work on the existing BPA road.

 

Green asked Chickering to come back with the revised estimate including the lifting of the guardrail with Option 2.He didnít want to delay this project further.

 

Chickering said he would return in January.

 

Motion was pulled.

 

b. SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance No. 19-04/In the Matter of Amending Chapter 7 of the Lane Code to Add a Provision Pertaining to Filing of Rabies Vaccination Certificate, Issuance of Tag (LC 7.088)(NBA & PM 11/23/04).

 

Wilson reported the ordinance had been prepared with four options on alternative language.She recalled at the first reading Morrison asked for additional work on the confidentiality aspect of the ordinance.She said included in the packet is a memorandum.She noted the Attorney Generalís office has the same analysis that the Public Records Law doesnít cleanly protect veterinarianís records.She said they had written language in the ordinance to provide the argument about trade secrets about a veterinarianís client list, but if a request for public information came in that wasnít specific to a particular veterinarian, that type of information would be available under the current public records law.She added the Board wanted additional information regarding financial figures.

 

Van Vactor stated he hadnít had time to contact LCARA to do a more detailed financial analysis.He stated he, David Suchart and Mike Welllington met and the memo dated November 27 in the packet indicates when other counties have increased their licenses, how their revenue was handled and how would it work in Lane County.He said they would have to talk to the cities about a 50/50 split.He thought they should try to get LCARA off of Lane Countyís general fund so it is self-sufficient.

 

Green reported that Hampton was excused for this afternoon and requested that they deliberate and have discussions without any action.He added a third reading and deliberation would take place next week.

 

Commissioner Green opened up the Public Hearing.

 

Jeani Sapienza, P. O. Box 41868, Eugene, noted the LCARA task force recommendation that was submitted last year should be approved, making it mandatory for all Lane County veterinarians to notify LCARA when dogs are given rabies vaccinations.She noted that veterinarians were already completing the proof of rabies form and could provide a copy to LCARA.She said from that LCARA could compile a list of vaccinated dogs in Lane County.She added a database could keep rabies information and help ensure compliance that dogs be vaccinated and licensed.She noted that only 17% of Lane Countyís 75,000 dogs are currently licensed.She said that hundreds of thousands of dollars from licensing could provide LCARA with the funding it needs and lessen the need for general fund revenue.She thought a spay and neuter voucher program for low-income individuals with pets is a way to reduce the amount of unwanted animals being born.She added that micro chipping was another way to save lives and funds.She asked the Board to consider the task force recommendations.

 

Diana Robertson, 1416 Santa Rosa St., Eugene, stated she represented the non-profit organization SARA and is the executive director.She said their mission is to rescue, assist and advocate for the animals at LCARA.She said they are in favor of having mandatory rabies reporting because of the proposed 20% increase in dog licensing that should lead to fewer dogs getting impounded in the shelter.She stated that up until this past October, they were able to rescue all of the dogs that were considered adoptable but with the economy struggling, both humane societies were full and they had to let good dogs die.

 

Rita Costello, 6825 F Street, Springfield, stated she was for the proposal.She said they would be euthenizing less dogs.She noted of the states and municipalities that had done this, no one had rescinded the ordinance.

 

Candice Kinegry, 3290 County Farm Road, she said volunteers for re-homing pets, getting them out of shelters.She said she spoke with Mike Wellington, LCARA and he said no way would the mandatory rabies reporting be a police action.She said there is no legal consequence.She thought the only people who would be impacted negatively are those working outside of the law.She urged the Board to pass this measure.

 

Roberta Boyden, 1568 Fairmont, stated she had been a veterinarian for seven years and is a member of the Lane County Veterinary Medical Association and was a member of the LCARA task force.She reported she had worked in veterinarian clinics in six states and with the exception of Lane County, rabies reporting of dogs and cats was required and part of a normal procedure when an animal was vaccinated. She added that rabies reporting was the norm rather than the exception.She commented that rabies reporting of companion animals serves the community in a number of ways.She said it lets them know who is protected by rabies should another animal bite it.She said having a uniform rabies tagging system will benefit lost animals and increasing licensure means more willhave a tag and it would make it more likely that the animal would be returned home.She added it would also create a permanent revenue source for LCARA.She thought client confidentiality had been addressed in the code.She asked, as procedures for reporting are developed, that veterinarians be consulted so the reporting could be as simple and efficient as possible.She didnít want the enforcement of the rabies law to enforce limit lawsShe didnít think it was in the publicís best interest to reduce the number of homes for animals in this time of overpopulation, or to decrease the number of rabies vaccination out of an individualís fear that they might lose their pet if too many animals reported to the same address.

 

Chris Horton, recalled last year on December 3 the LCARA task force report was given.He said nothing has been done with the whole task force studyHe wanted to see something done with a pet food surcharge that reduces licensing numbers.He wanted a portion of the surcharge to go to spay and neuter programs and low income vouchers.He recommended putting the flyers in tax statements so they could generate more licenses.He said they needed more money for kennels.He asked the Board to place equal importance on the reported findings of the task force.

 

Lorraine Still, P. O. Box 1213, Creswell, asked the Board to follow the recommendations of the Veterinarian Association and vote against the ordinance.

 

Robert Herman, 625 W. 25th, Eugene, urged the Board to support this ordinance.

 

Jack Dresser, 38131 McKenzie Highway, thought the proposal addressed the public health objective of rabies.He said rabies reporting had been proven in a number of jurisdictions around the country.He said it had yielded significant outcomes at little cost.He thought by increasing dog registration it would generate funds for humane programs. He didnít want that money going into the general fund.He wanted to see funds going toward the purchase of a mobile spay and neuter van.He wanted a sliding scale developed for low-income people.He reported that the law already mandates rabies vaccines and dog licensure and this measure would facilitate compliance with the law.

 

Scott Bartlett, 1445 21st Avenue, Eugene, said the task force backs this ordinance.He said it is also a public health mechanism.He noted they donít have a database system for rabies retrieval or for licensure.

 

Mary Ann Holser, 2620 Cresta de Ruta, commented that rabies is a dangerous disease.She said it is a public health issue.She thought it is the community responsibility to take care of their own pets and keeping them healthy.She thought the reporting issues could be worked out through the legislature.

 

Jeanette Overholser, 30300 Cottage Grove Lorane Road, Cottage Grove, agreed with comments made by other task force members.She commented that rabies is present in Lane County.She stated the animal population is growing along with the population of Lane County.She added LCARA is not growing and their staff has decreased.She said they need more funding, staffing and kennels.

 

Al Philips, P. O. Box 2146, Eugene,said they have a space problem at LCARA.He said they should start looking at a bond levy to expand LCARA.He noted the kennel clubs agreed with the Board and Scott Bartlett that part of the funding for licenses for the kennels was to go toward spay and neuter education and PR.His recommendation was with regular licensing to allocate a particular amount of money toward spaying and neutering.He said they need to go forward with the limit law problem.

 

Dr. Jim Jett, 2990 Floral Hill Drive, Eugene, said he has been a practicing veterinarian in Lane County for the past 25 years.He said his practice is in the Thurston area of Springfield and his clients have Springfield mailing addresses. He understood that under this ordinance there would be certain penalties for non-compliance for veterinarians.He agreed that LCARA needed a better funding source and many animal welfare needs are not being addressed.He commented that most people requesting services are not licensed dog owners and most of the animals for LCARA calls are not licensed dogs.He thought they should examine a pet food tax. He said he had no problem with reporting animals that he vaccinates to the County, but he couldnít determine where they live.He was concerned about the limit laws and the confidentiality of his records.

 

Dwyer commented licensing isnít determined where a pet owner lives, but where the veterinarianís facility is located

 

Wilson explained this law would apply within the city limits of Springfield if the Springfield City Councilors consent or enact a similar ordinance.She noted if a practice existed outside the city limits in unincorporated Lane County, it would apply to the practice.She said it is a reporting requirement of the veterinarian, it is not dependent on the location of where the dog owner lives.

 

Sylvia Calderwood, 28140 Spencer Creek Road, Eugene, she said she knows people whose dogs have rabies shots but they donít have licenses.†† She noted that rabies shots and licenses are two separate things.She commented that limit laws are a big concern.

 

Debbie Barry, PleasantHill, commented that more dogs have rabies shots than are licensed.She thought they had to deal with limit laws for people to comply.She thought all animals should be vaccinated against rabies.

 

Chula Gerne, 933 Jackson St., supports mandatory reporting for rabies vaccination.She said in Lane County there are not enough resources for feral animals.She added that by having more dogs licensed it would generate more revenue to help LCARA.

 

Jill Andres, P. O. Box 856, Marcola, commented she knows people who live outside the city limits do not want to license their dogs.She added they do try to keep up their rabies vaccination.She thought this might have an opposite affect and people might not get their animals vaccinated.

 

Sandra Smalley, 155 Coachman, Eugene, said if public health is the issue then she thought that cats should also be vaccinated.She added that cats are carriers of rabies, rarely dogs.

 

Bob Still, 83076N. Bradford, commented that people would fight, flee or flow.

 

Dresser recommended using convenience stores as a place to buy licenses when customers pick up their beers.

 

There being no one else signed up to speak, Green closed the Public Hearing.

 

Dwyer entered Judge Sinclairís letter into the record.

 

MOTION:to move to defer action until next week for a Third Reading and Deliberation for Ordinance No. 19-04 for December 15.

 

Dwyer MOVED, Morrison SECONDED.

 

Wilson indicated there is a state statute on the books that requires dogs to receive a rabies vaccination.She said they are discussing a reporting requirement.

 

VOTE: 4-0.

 

Dwyer agreed they needed to build more kennels at LCARA.He thought they should be more judicious about microchipping.

 

Morrison asked how many rabies bites they deal with on an annual basis in Lane County.

 

Suchart said he would find out that information from Rob Rockstroh.

 

Green commented that the Board was given a list of projects and extra kennels was not on the list.

 

14. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

Dwyer announced that Tuesday at 9:30 a.m. Morrison is giving turkeys to Food Share and at 10:30 the other Board members are meeting at Safeway at 18th & Oak.He added they would be giving away 592 turkeys.He reported tomorrow is an MPC meeting about the West Eugene Parkway.

 

15. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD

 

None.

 

16. OTHER BUSINESS

 

Van Vactor noted they had an e-mail exchange between the two mayors between city limits and the urban growth boundary.He asked if there were any suggested changes.He asked the Board to get back to him by e-mail.

 

Green noted if Van Vactor doesnít hear back from the Board then he could go forward.

 

Green announced that he and Morrison would be attending the River Road Park District meeting tonight to be part of a discussion on a transition manager.

 

There being no further business, Commissioner Green adjourned the meeting at 3:30 p.m..

 

 

Melissa Zimmer

Recording Secretary.