BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS'
February 4, 2004
Harris Hall Main Floor
Commissioner Bobby Green, Sr., presided with Commissioners Bill Dwyer, Don Hampton, Anna Morrison and Peter Sorenson present. County Administrator Bill Van Vactor, County Counsel Teresa Wilson and Recording Secretary Melissa Zimmer were also present.
Job Shadow Students: Whitney Acres, Springfield High School; Zach Robertson, Creswell High School; Shoshana Amaroso, Cottage Grove High School; Robin Moppert, Willamette High School; Natasha Adams, South Eugene High School.
1. ADJUSTMENTS TO THE AGENDA
2. PUBLIC COMMENTS
Cindy Matthews, 382239 McKenzie Highway, stated she was concerned about erosion from the McKenzie River on their property and downstream. She indicated in 1995 their family had the opportunity to build a home and cabinet business on the property that had been in the family for over 50 years. She said they acquired all the required permits and they were required to build 100 feet from the river. She said they built 110 feet away from the river. She said when the 1996 flood came they had no water on the property. She stated that construction of their home began in spring 1996. She said after the flood in 1996, the National Resource Conservation Service was allowed in 1997 to install jetties upstream that would divert the water from the north bank to the center. She noted at that time the framing of their home was completed. She stated in 2002 the river channel changed and they no longer had access to 40 acres of their farm. She added in 2003 they lost part of the dike that was protecting the property and her home. She said the erosion continued and they went to Lane County and the Army Corps of Engineer and received no help. She indicated they had to evacuate their home and business because their house is condemned and is hanging over the riverbank. She asked for help before it becomes a disaster.
Art Paz, 86950 Cedar Flat Road, stated for the past two weeks he had been witnessing the erosion that has taken 110 feet of riverbank from the Matthew property. He noted since 2002 the Matthews had communicated with the Corps of Engineers, the National Resource Conservation Service and Lane County without a definition of any clear decisive and timely direction. He commented the County needs to show the integrity and determination of serving the community in bringing clarity to the Matthews’ incident. He said that Lane County needs to render immediate assistance to mitigate further damage to the Matthews’ property, the McKenzie River, the down river properties and the future recreational users of the McKenzie River. He added the Eugene Springfield Metropolitan Waterway Study representing the county and both cities, needs to incorporate two or three McKenzie River citizens on their study committee and they need to designate a design ready priority for the study area of the East Springfield and Cedar Creek and the lower McKenzie River. He submitted photographs that showed the condition of the property as of two days ago.
Jim Haydon, 88360 Charley Lane, stated he lives in the flood plain across from the Matthews’ property. He thinks his property is also jeopardized. He said the County has allowed development in areas of the river that overflow channels during high water. He said all changes in riverbanks would have effects on downstream currents and cause the river to change channels instead of flowing into the overflow channels. He didn’t think Lane County officials are competent to manage the McKenzie River in relationship to development. He thought Lane Code 16.224 flood hazard reduction had been put aside in relation to his property. He asked what would happen if a flood takes place. He noted the property had been in his family for nine decades.
Kirsten La Shot, 88304 Charley Lane, stated that no agency is willing to take responsibility and there is no recourse for citizens when the government makes a mistake. She commented she was as frustrated with her situation as the Matthews. She noted she lives down stream from them. She indicated she is dealing with water that is being backed up onto her property by EWEB and the effects are long term. She said they have lost an acre of land that is underwater.
Dwyer stated that they had emergency management working on this. He commented that the Matthews’ property was only the beginning of a potential flood disaster. He said things are occurring upstream that are impacting things downstream. He said they need to collectively work together to prevent this from happening in the future but asked where the money would come from.
Hampton indicated they conducted a second site visit on the Matthews property with all of the governmental agencies that could possibly help. He found it frustrating that all of the government agencies said they couldn’t act. He stated the Corps of Engineers said they could act, but they could only act when there is a flood event. He said they need a change in federal policy that would allow these agencies to take preventative action.
Shauna Wood, stated she lives downstream from the Matthews’ property. She said they lost approximately 800 feet long by 50 foot wide of their property. She said she would be in the same position as the Matthews and hopes someone will take care of it.
Jerry Halgoun, 39607 McKenzie, supported the Matthews and the people downstream. He said a change took place on the river by the water bars that were placed upstream. He added as the river changed, it put the full force of the water into their island. He said as a result, the Matthews, Marshall, Hart’s property and others will receive the impact of the river and erosion will continue to take place. He noted the dikes were put in the 40’s and 50’s and asked why they weren’t maintained. He thought they were transferred to the County from the Corps of Engineers. His concern is that the river has completely changed.
Hampton commented when the temporary barrier was put in 1947, the prevailing philosophy of the Corps of Engineers was to try to control the river. He said that no longer is their philosophy. He said they think the river should find its own course. He contacted the City of Springfield to let them know that the river experts said there is a possibility of a flood event going into Cedar Creek and affecting the Levi Landing area. He didn’t know if the Corps of Engineers was taking preventative action.
David Rodrigues, 87984 Heather Drive, stated he lives above the Matthews property. He said the Corps of Engineers put the bars in the river to protect the downstream neighbor. He added they had a small rip rap project. He didn’t think the levies were responsible for the flooding. He said the old river channel below the Matthews where the river has turned has filled in with sediment and logs. He said what it is doing upstream is drawing water faster than it can from upstream.
Al Philips, P. O. Box 2136, discussed government with the Job Shadow students.
Dale Matthews, 38127 McKenzie Highway, said they are not mad at the County. He asked for help. He said the only way to start is from the bottom. He said they know the County doesn’t have money and no one else does either. He said they have to go to the federal government. He asked the Board to work with the federal government.
Green said the County has to exhaust all of its resources and then ask the Corps to do something on Lane County’s behalf. He said they could talk with the federal representatives. He asked for a copy of this meeting to take back to Washington, D.C. to watch what is taking place at the local level.
3. EMERGENCY BUSINESS
4. COMMISSIONERS' REMONSTRANCE
5. COMMISSIONERS' BUSINESS
Green passed out the Outstanding Intergovernmental Team Award from LCOG to Jim Dotson and Debbie Phillips.
Green noted that Lane County was recognized as one of the top employers for achieving and reaching a plateau of over $100,000 for United Way. He thanked all the employees who contributed to the effort.
Green recognized Tanya Heaton for her efforts with United Way.
6. COMMITTEE REPORTS
* Seeking Re-Authorization of Secure Rural Schools.
Tony Bieda, Intergovernmental Relations Manager, explained this is Public Law 106393. He noted it was the technical name of the current safety net payments that Lane County receives from the federal government. He recalled this was first authorized in Congress in 1999/2000 and thanks to the work of Lane County’s congressional delegation in the House and Senate, they were able to secure substantial funding for Lane County and all forest counties throughout the country in lieu of the traditional revenue that was available to forest counties through a percent of the timber harvest.
Bieda stated this was a reminder and acknowledgment that they now have two years left of the act and they will be working in conjunction with other coalitions in Oregon and across the country to seek re-authorization of the act. He added it could be an extension of the act for another five years or it could be re-visiting the whole formula and structure, or Congress could decide that there is not enough money to continue this as an entitlement and either discontinue it or make it subject to the appropriations process, being comparable to payments in lieu of taxes.
Dwyer’s preference would be to have a bill that would extend the sunset before they get into the crux of things. He thought if they extended the sunset they would have a greater chance to get the money. He wanted to work concurrently with other aspects to see if they could be successful with that endeavor.
Morrison commented that she is more positive about what is going to take place in the next session of Congress. She sits on the National Forest County Schools Coalition’s Executive Board and in the past three months there had been work done in Washington, D.C with the subcommittees and with staff.
Bieda played a video on the Secure Rural Schools Act.
* Community Corrections Funding/SB 1145.
Bieda explained that this is the funding arrangement by which Lane County government has supervision authority over a class of adult offenders in the state corrections system and the funding that is made available to the county to pay for that supervision. He noted what is at stake with the outcome of Measure 30 is that $1.8 million would be Lane County’s share of the disappropriation (or cut) to community corrections funding that will occur on May 1 under the statute that was passed by the legislature last fall.
The materials that Bieda passed out previously (copy in file) outline the general background and what some of the options are. He noted there was no need for action other than to start the process. He said between the cuts to community corrections, K-12, and Health and Human Services, that the legislature and the governor’s office will have to have discussions between now and May 1. He didn’t know if that would produce any type of mitigating action to avoid the $1.8 million decrement in funding for community corrections. He recalled the Board sent notice a year ago when the proposed budget for this biennium cut the funding for community corrections below a level that was deemed to be acceptable for Lane County government. He noted when the actual budget was finally adopted, and the funding was restored, they rescinded the notice.
Dwyer asked where it put Lane County regarding the agreed upon payments under SB 1145.
Bieda responded the $1.8 million would trigger Lane County’s ability to opt out. He noted there had been discussion about the Department of Corrections going back to the counties to authorize possible workload reductions.
Dwyer asked what the timeline was for Lane County to exercise the provisions of SB 1145 in terms of opting out.
Wilson explained the notice requirement is a 180-day notice. She said they have to have the trigger and legally be below the amount. She stated that had not been confirmed that the disappropriation bill would work for Lane County. She said she didn’t know the answer.
Dwyer stated they served and rescinded the notice. He said there is no requirement of when to rescind but there is a requirement for when they notice. He thought it would be to Lane County’s advantage that as soon as they ascertain that the formula is below the current contractual obligation under SB 1145, they procedurally notify the state that they expect them to keep their share of the bargain.
7. COUNTY ADMINISTRATION
b. DISCUSSION/Renewal of Riverfront Research Park Urban Renewal District.
Van Vactor indicated that Lane County received notice from the City of Eugene that they were interested in renewing the Riverfront Research Park Urban Renewal District and expanding its boundaries. He contacted Jim Gangle, County Assessor, since the original urban renewal district was created property tax laws had changed. He explained that today the way urban renewal districts operate is that they reduce revenue to other local governments like Lane County.
Richie Weinman, City of Eugene, noted the Riverfront Research Park Urban Renewal District was created about 20 years ago to support the concept to create a first class research facility that the University of Oregon had. He said it was controversial at the time and it never panned out the way the university and the community had hoped. He said the renewal district was created in order to create an infrastructure. He noted it is set to expire next year and they are wanting to extend the district for another 20 years, focusing not on the Riverfront Research Park area, but on the new federal courthouse area, making the connections between the city downtown area and the river and recognizing the potential. He said they wanted to slightly expand the district to connect it with downtown so it comes down Broadway and touches the current downtown renewal district. He noted the district does not generate a lot of taxes and it has spent much in the past, but it offers an opportunity where there could be loans made to businesses that go in. He added it could generate future tax revenue that would last longer than the district and would create revenue outside of the district along Franklin Boulevard. He noted there are over 70 renewal districts throughout the State of Oregon.
Dwyer thought it was a question of Lane County resources. He wanted it shown that by not providing this district in light of the fact that there will be a new federal courthouse, that development wouldn’t occur without a government subsidy to allow it to occur. He wasn’t convinced that would happen. He wasn’t convinced that development won’t occur on both sides of Franklin Boulevard as a result of its proximity to the courthouse and the plans for re-opening the mill race. He said they need to see what would happen without government’s intervention instead of assuming that none of this would happen unless they kick start this. He wasn’t willing to give any more County tax money because of a budget deficit.
Gangle explained the concept behind urban renewal is that it would cure urban blight. He said the assessor’s office establishes a frozen base for the particular area. He said the value increases in that area and the urban renewal district captures the value and it is used to pay off bonds for the operation of the urban renewal district. He noted that Lane County would be foregoing revenue now through 2024, while the urban renewal is implemented and the debt is paid off. He said the concept would be that in 2025 Lane County would capture the growth that had occurred. He asked the Board if this is something they wanted to support now.
Van Vactor asked if the City of Eugene could share the proceeds from the urban renewal district in an amount equivalent to what Lane County would be losing.
Sue Cutsogeorge, City of Eugene, responded they couldn’t make a direct payment to Lane County. She said they were restricted in the use of urban renewal funds to projects that are in the plan and the projects in the plan have to achieve the goals of the plan in some way so a direct payment couldn’t be made to a government for services. She added if there were projects within the district that Lane County was interested in seeing happen it might be something that could be put in the plan.
Weinman stated the renewal district could not give money to the City of Eugene either.
Van Vactor asked if the county had any authority to disagree with the amount of the indebtedness or in any way object to the plan and stop the city council from going forward with this proposal.
Weinman responded that other public taxing agencies can comment and those comments get filed with the city council acting as a renewal board, and they take those into consideration. He added that Lane County does not have veto authority.
Dwyer said this had a serious impact on the citizens of Lane County outside of the boundaries. He said they need to change the law. He stated if the city wants to give away their tax base to a district that was up to them. He didn’t want to have a law that allows them to give away Lane County’s money and not have Lane County have any say in it. He said this would happen with or without the city council He thought the people of Lane County deserved to have their share of the tax dollars.
Van Vactor’s recommendation was to correspond with the city council so they know Lane County’s concerns, consistent with what they have discussed. He thought there would be more urban renewal districts coming up for renewal in the future. He thought it was the time to start communicating.
Dwyer commented this was a stretch of the urban renewal law. He intends to support urban renewal changes that really take care of blight.
Green indicated the Board could respond and comment and have the minutes of this meeting included as part of that correspondence. He wanted it to be a win-win situation. He thought maybe there could be a revenue sharing that could benefit Lane County. He suggested having the Economic Development Committee meet so they could attach the comments from the meeting as part of their comments.
Weinman commented if there was anything that Lane County wanted to add to the plan, as a staff person, he would pledge to bring it to the city council to encourage them to adopt it as part of the plan. He added that the state sets the urban renewal law, it is not a product of city government.
Green asked Hampton to convene a special meeting of the Economic Development Committee to discuss this issue before the City of Eugene’s timeline. He asked Gangle to also be involved. He asked if there was a way to weigh in on the plan, with more productive ideas that would benefit Lane County. He wanted the group to meet prior to February 23 so their comments would be submitted to the City of Eugene with the concerns they raised.
Dwyer requested having the legislature change the law to allow Lane County to opt out.
Green asked Bieda and Dwyer to work on the legislative change.
8. PUBLIC WORKS
a. FIRST READING AND SETTING SECOND READING AND PUBLIC HEARING/Ordinance PA 1194/In the Matter of Amending the Lane County General Plan Policies (An Element of the Lane County Rural Comprehensive Plan) by Revising Goal Two Policies 4, 10, 11, 15, 16, 21 And 27; Plan Designations and Zoning Designations for Seventeen Unincorporated Rural Communities in the Siuslaw Watershed and the Long Tom Watershed to Comply With Such Amendments; and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (Second Reading & Public Hearing: February 18, 2004, 1:30 pm).
MOTION: to approve a First Reading and Setting a Second Reading and Public hearing for February 18, 2004 at 1:30 p.m. for Ordinance PA 1194.
Dwyer MOVED, Hampton SECONDED
VOTE: 4-0 (Morrison out of room).
b. POSSIBLE CONTINUED THIRD READING AND DELIBERATION/Ordinance PA 1188/In the Matter of Amending the Lane County Rural Comprehensive Plan to Revise the “Significant Mineral and Aggregate Resources Inventory”, Redesignate from “Forest” to “Natural Resource: Mineral”, Rezone from “F-1/Non-Impacted Forest Lands” to “QM/Quarry and Mine Operations” and Allow Mining for 40 Acres of Land Pursuant to Lane Code 16.400 and 16.252 and the Goal 5 Oregon Administrative Rules (OAR 660-023), and Adopting Savings and Severability Clauses (File PA 98-5144; B.J. Equipment Company). (NBA & PM 3/19/03 & 4/30/03)
MOTION: to approve a Third Reading and Setting a Fourth Reading and Deliberation for Ordinance PA 1188 for February 11, 2004.
Dwyer MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
VOTE: 4-0 (Morrison out of room).
9. CONSENT CALENDAR
A. Approval of Minutes: None.
B. Health and Human Services
1) ORDER 04-2-4-1/In the Matter of Awarding Contracts to Serve on the Lane County Managed Mental Health Provider Panel as Listed in Appendix A.
C. Public Safety
1) ORDER 04-2-4-2/In the Matter of Approving Amendment No. Two (2) to Pharmaceutical Services Agreement with Contract Pharmacy Services, Inc. to Provide Inmate Pharmacy Services to Lane County Adult Corrections Facility.
D. Public Works
1) ORDER 04-2-4-3/In the Matter of Awarding a Contract to Eugene Sand and Gravel in the Amount of $2,359,905.30 for Grading, Drainage, Paving, Illumination & Signals – Jasper Road Extension (MP 9.74-Hwy. 126 to MP 00.44-Jasper Rd. Ext.), Contract No. 03/04-08.
E. Workforce Partnership
1) ORDER 04-2-4-4/In the Matter of Increasing Revenue and Expense Appropriations in the Workforce Partnership Fund (Fund 249) by $312,731 for Fiscal Year 2003-04.
F. Youth Services
1) ORDER 04-2-4-5/In the Matter of Ratifying the Intergovernmental Agreement with Oregon Youth Authority for Wraparound Services in the Amount of $320,400 Increasing Appropriations and Expenditures in Youth Services in the Amount of $37,110.
MOTION: to approve the Consent Calendar.
Dwyer MOVED, Hampton SECONDED.
VOTE: 4-0. (Morrison out of room).
10. CHILDREN AND FAMILIES
a. RESOLUTION AND ORDER 04-2-4-6/In the Matter of Authorizing the County Administrator to Sign a Grant Application to the U.S. Department of Justice, Office on Violence Against Women, for an Eighteen Month Grant For Up to $1.5 Million to Support Planning and Development of Co-Located Coordinated Services to Victims of Domestic Violence Into One Facility.
Alicia Hays, Children and Families, asked the Board to approve that the County Administrator sign a planning grant for the development of co-located services to victims of domestic violence. She noted it is a $1.5 million grant, the President’s Family Justice Initiative, a pilot that will provide communities with resources for planning and development in the establishment of a comprehensive domestic violence victim service center. She said this grant would be an opportunity for all partners to come together to review the grant. She said it is an 18-month grant, not an ongoing grant. She added that they have been partnering with the District Attorney’s office.
Doug Harcleroad, District Attorney, stated his recommendation is that they do this. He said they built the grant with appropriate indirects. He added there are only 12 sites around the country and it will be competitive.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 04-2-4-6.
Hampton MOVED, Sorenson SECONDED.
Green asked how much money was for planning, and if they finished the planning before 18 months, if they could use the money to help the development.
Kamala Shugar, District Attorney’s Office, participated in asking questions about the grant and how the money could be spent. She said they were hoping to take six months for planning. She said the overlap of the planning would be part of the implementation. She noted the idea is they could actually renovate one of the buildings of Lane County. She said the rent and all infrastructure could be paid out of the grant. She hoped in the process of trying this out during the 18-month period other community partners would find a way to continue to staff the center with existing personnel. She added they discussed a fundraising scheme for keeping a family justice center open, including corporate community partners who contribute in kind or with donations to keep something like this going. She said the grant will pay for fundraising outreach and they could end up improving a site that belongs to Lane County. She added if it doesn’t work out, Lane County would have an improved site.
Hampton thought this was a good example of the county taking a leadership role on something that is a critical issue. He was willing to allow them to take the risk of going through the planning.
Dwyer supported the concept of a family justice center but worries about the sustainability.
VOTE: 4-0 (Morrison excused).
11. HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
a. ORDER 04-2-4-7/In the Matter of Amending Chapter 60 of Lane Manual to Revise Certain Health and Human Services Fees in Order to Establish Fee Schedule for Federally Qualified Health Centers (LM 60.840) Effective January 21, 2004.
Steve Manela, Human Services Commission, explained this is an important element of implementing the community health center. He said it is important to consider the sliding fee scale for the people they will serve at the community health center. He said they are trying to have a sliding fee schedule that is affordable for people who don’t have health insurance and is appropriately based upon the means they have available. He said this is part of the fee setting for the community health center. He said the Board is being asked to approve the schedule and a minimum fee of $20 for medical services and $35 for dental services. He added the other charges they charge OHP or insurance companies is based upon what is normal and usual for a market place. He said they use a standard to what other community health centers in the state use, which is about 10% lower than the commercial market.
MOTION: to approve ORDER 04-2-4-7.
Dwyer MOVED, Sorenson, SECONDED.
Dwyer commented that this came to Finance and Audit and they thought it was a good opportunity to serve 6,000 families in light of what is happening statewide.
VOTE: 4-0 (Morrison excused).
Manela noted the grand opening of the health center is on March 1, 2004 in Springfield.
12. CORRESPONDENCE TO THE BOARD
13. COMMISSIONERS' ANNOUNCEMENTS
14. EXECUTIVE SESSION as per ORS 192.660
To be held after the meeting.
16. OTHER BUSINESS
There being no further business, Commissioner Green recessed the meeting into Executive Session at 11:40 a.m.