City Council

City to Hold Uber Hearing

EUGENE, Ore. — Changes could be coming to the city of Eugene’s transportation code to allow rideshare app Uber to continue operating within city limits.

The city of Eugene is holding a public hearing on Tuesday to get input from residents about taxi companies and whether changes should be made to the city code, allowing companies like Uber to operate within the city.

Uber faces about $118,000 in fines for operating without a business license. But, Uber drivers say they’re not a business, but actually self-employed because they drive their own cars.

Those drivers are trying to rally their riders, mostly college students, to come to the city council meeting and give their input.  One driver says he has a taxi license and used to drive cabs in Eugene, but for him, Uber is more profitable.

“I actually make money. When I was in the cab business I was losing money. You know, I worked twelve hour shifts four to five days a week and I’d make $200 a week. That’s not wages,” said Steve Sutherlandgray, Uber driver.

The city is sending out notices to Uber drivers, letting them know they’re in violation of city code and to get in compliance before the city starts penalizing drivers.

The city council will hear public input on possible updates they can make to the city code to recognize transportation technology changes, while also making sure customers are safe.

City Approves Funds for Fire Victims

11-24 springfield council'SPRINGFIELD, Ore. — Help is on the way for those forced from their apartments after it was deemed unfit to live.

During Monday’s council meeting, councilors talked about dipping into the general fund to help those who can longer live at the Main Street building because it doesn’t meet fire and other city codes.

The assistance could total about $25,000. The money would be used to help people find a new place to live through the end of the year.

While some councilors were apprehensive, it did pass.

“I am fine with that, but I want to make sure that this isn’t something that people take advantage of,” said councilor Dave Ralston “It sets a bad precedent.”

Councilors are also hoping the public will chip in to help the two dozen residents find a new place to live.

Group Asks Council to Lift Camping Ban

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EUGENE, Ore. — As the temperatures begin to drop groups are asking the city of Eugene to lift its camping ban.

The Raging Grannies, a social activism group made their voices heard at the city council meeting Monday night.

“The camping ban really criminalizes homelessness. If you don’t have a place to sleep you don’t have a place to be. And that’s really, you know that’s the crux of it,” said Barb Prentice, Raging Grannies member.

The group of women ranging in age from their 50s to 80s sang in unison Monday night outside Harris Hall, shouting for the homeless’ right to sleep in parks.

“You’re kicked to the curb and actually sited repeatedly you’re in more trouble as time goes by if you’re caught sleeping,” said Patty Hine, Raging Grannies member.

“When we’re charged with kind of managing the public spaces that’s for everybody to use. And if somebody is using it to camp no one else can use it. And that’s not fair to everybody else,” said Mike Clark, Eugene City Councilor.

Clark doubts the council will lift the ban.

And Councilor Claire Syrett agrees because of the council’s responsibility to local neighborhoods.

“The reaction from other members of the community was pretty strong that this was not something they wanted to see happen in their city parks,” said Syrett.

Despite the disagreement, this group of women didn’t give up, and took their voices to the podium at Monday’s night meeting.

“Our city of Eugene can do better. We are not hard-hearted people. I’m a raging granny and I approved this message,” said Amy Raven, Raging Grannies member.

Fireworks Calls for Service and Response

Fireworks Calls for Service and Response


Eugene Springfield Fire and Eugene Police and the Metro Explosive Disposal Unit have been taking steps to reduce the volume of unlawful displays, including through public service announcements, education and enforcement. This year, more emphasis was placed on outreach and enforcement. The goal is to raise awareness and reduce illegal fireworks hazards. June 24, 2014, the Eugene City Council approved two City Code changes to address the pervasive use of fireworks, which raises many concerns for the safety and wellbeing of animals, senior citizens, military veterans, refugees, and community members at large. There has also been concern regarding injuries and fires caused by fireworks that can damage property and the environment.
Eugene Police staffed additional officers on Friday July 4, from 8 p.m. to July 5 at 2 a.m., while Fire crews patrolled neighborhoods to note and report illegal fireworks activity.

Additional data regarding crime prevention efforts prior to the 4th will be available next week. For follow up interviews, the first availability should be Sunday July 6.

Fireworks Enforcement Statistics July 4 from 8 p.m. to July 5 at 2 a.m.
PRELIMINARY 2014 JULY 4 TOTAL ILLEGAL FIREWORKS CALLS ENTERED – 165

CONTACTS MADE BY ENFORCEMENT DETAIL – 68

*       POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS CITATIONS   –    9
*       ADVISED REGARDING FIREWORKS USE –    16
*       QUIET ON ARRIVAL OR GONE ON ARRIVAL   –   35
*       RESOLVED OR UNFOUNDED –   8

social host warnings/cites/arrests:
*       NONE

Charged were:
FACKLER, MATTHEW S.03201971     CLC -POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


HOGANSEN, GARY L.08221954               CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


EBA,ABRAHAM B.07211993          CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


GALINDO,NICOLAS.10241990                CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


CACERES,WOLFREDO A.09221982     CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


BENWAY,RAYMOND JR.07151993      CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


HETRICK,MARK VERNON.04171963    CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


SILBERSTEIN,AARON N.10181974    CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS


VALENTINE,CALEB E.01021990              CLC-POSSESSION ILLEGAL FIREWORKS



Previous Years – Illegal Fireworks Calls in Eugene
2013 = 247 calls
2012 = 177
2011 = 214
2010 = 133
2009 = 174


BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The City Code changes include:
1) Within Eugene, fireworks that are legal for retail purchase can be used only between June 23 and July 6 and December 31 and January 1. (City Code 4.934). Violation of the ordinance is punishable by jail and the base fine has been set at $250.
2) The use of illegal fireworks during anytime of the year, or the use of fireworks that are legal for retail purchase other than between June 23 and July 6 andDecember 31 and January 1, has been added to the Social Host ordinance ( 4.670).
The social host, or ordinance on unruly gatherings, holds individuals criminally responsible for hosting, organizing and allowing an unruly event or social gathering. Property owners where the event is hosted will also be penalized if there are multiple violations of this ordinance at the same property. The Eugene Municipal Court has assigned a base fine of $375 for criminal violations of this ordinance. Both hosts and property owners could be civilly liable for police, fire and public works response to repeated illegal gatherings that fall under this ordinance. For more information: SOCIAL HOST<http://www.eugene-or.gov/index.aspx?NID=2373>
Information about fireworks has also being sent out through media/social media, Neighborhood Watch groups, Neighborhood Associations, and fireworks vendors. 

The post Fireworks Calls for Service and Response appeared first on Lane County Mugshots.

City Council Adopts Fiscal Year Budget

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EUGENE, Ore. — After months and months of debate the Eugene City Council moved to adopt next year’s fiscal budget.

This comes after the budget committee was faced with a challenge of trying to fill $2.5 million dollar shortfall.

The proposed budget, recommended by the budget committee — cuts $1.9 million in city services.

The $494 million dollar budget included cutting jobs – making cuts to some parks maintenance and the downtown library for half a day.

The Bethel Branch in west Eugene will stay open indefinitely, while the Sheldon Branch will stay open for another year beginning in July, with the help of $306,000 in one time funds.

Library services have been a major point of contention throughout this process.

Councilor George Poling thinks the budget committee should make a recommendation to the council to put out a serial library levy to the voters.

Those who spoke at the hearing Monday night focused on that future.

“Many library advocates are already urging that we put the library levy on fiscal year 2015-2016. People are stopping us in the street and saying when is the levy going to be and how can I help,” said Eugene resident, Carol Hildebrand.

The levy would likely go on the November ballot.

A number of people also spoke about cuts to the Human Services Commission.

There is also an addition to the budget – $200,000 to help fund the 2016 Track and Field Olympic Trials.

Creswell Council Will Vote on 3rd Deputy

creswell 2CRESWELL, Ore. — The Creswell City Council will meet at 7:00 Monday to hear if community members would be willing to foot the bill for keeping the city’s third deputy in town. The city added the deputy last year after a spike in property crime in the area.

Monday the city council will listen to input from the public on whether they want to keep the extra deputy, or go back down to two. The city said it can’t fund the position, so Creswell residents would have to pay $6.00 a month to keep the deputy on the payroll.

“The problem is that contingency funds are a one time only type of thing and so now we’re coming up on the new budget year and we weren’t able to find funds available for the budget to pay for the third deputy,” said Jacob Daniels, Creswell City Council President.

City councilors said they expect a lot of debate from both sides of the issue because while most people enjoy the extra deputy, many don’t want to pay to keep the position.

Eugene To Adopt 2015 Budget

budget stillEugene, Ore.– On Monday, the Eugene City Council will hold public hearings and take action on the FY15 Budget as previously approved by the Budget Committee. The city will make $1.9 million in cuts to services.

Downtown Library Reduction In Hours: $344,000
Community Events Transfer To Cultural Services Fund: $50,000
Recreation Services Fee Increase & Service Reductions: $200,000
Transfer Stormwater Services To Stormwater Fund: $605,000
Central Services Travel, Memberships & Misc.: $95,000
Equity, Human Rights, Neighborhoods & Sustainability: $350,000
Parks Maintenance: $300,000

The City Council will also hold public hearings and take action on the current fiscal year Second Supplemental Budget. This budget allocates funds for the city hall project.

Both meetings will be held at Harris Hall at 7:30pm.

Council to Vote On S. Willamette Plan

south willametteEUGENE, Ore. — The Eugene city council takes action Tuesday on a project that’s been on the table for more than a year: South Willamette Street.

That stretch of Willamette is from 24th to 32nd Avenue in south Eugene.

The council is voting on a plan to re-stripe the road to see what drivers think of the idea.

The improvement plan is looking at ways to make the street easily accessible and safe for walkers and bikers, and also ease congestion.

The proposal and re-striping project aims to take the street from the four lanes, two in each direction, and reduce it to one lane each way with a turn lane in the middle. Bike lanes would also be added.

Although some city councilors are against the proposal, some are curious to see the change.

“The notion that you don’t necessarily clog traffic by moving it to one moving lane as opposed to a turn lane is intriguing to me,” said Eugene city councilor and council president, Chris Pryor.

“A significant part of this plan is to add bike lanes to that stretch of Willamette, which I think is inherently unsafe and so do others, like the firefighters,” said city councilor, Mike Clark.

Council has two other options to consider, but councilors feel option three is most likely to pass.

One plan is to keep the four lanes and expand sidewalks; the other is to reduce to three lanes and expand sidewalks.

The city council work session is Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. and the meeting is at 7:30 p.m.

Citizens can also voice input at the 7:30 p.m. meeting; both are at Harris Hall.

 

Council Discusses Beverly Property

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EUGENE, Ore. — The Beverly property, which contains the Amazon Creek headwaters, has been a topic of discussion for more than a decade, and on Wednesday the Eugene City Council continued talks of purchasing the nearly 25-acres of land.

The possibility of putting housing on the land has become real, and many community members say they don’t want it developed. They say if it is, the damage to the area’s sensitive ecosystem will be irreversible.

At Wednesday’s work session, Councilor Betty Taylor motioned to direct the City Manager to purchase the property, to protect the water supply, air quality, and natural habitat for the wildlife there, but the council was split down the middle, with four voting in favor, and four voting to table the motion.

Ultimately, Mayor Kitty Piercy decided to table it.

Some councilors argued the property would cost the city too much.

“For the city to buy this right now would be absolutely financially reckless,” said Councilor Mike Clark, Ward 5.

The motion that did end up passing, allows the council to move forward with private, outside buyers, who could help them take on the costs of the property.

Just before the meeting, representatives from the Southeast Neighbors Board gave the mayor a petition, with more than 1,700 people asking the council to buy the land. Afterward, the group’s president said she was pleased with how seriously the council is taking their concerns.

Bus fees going down in Corvallis

The fees that Corvallis residents pay for transit services will decline 17 cents per month starting Saturday.

As of Feb. 1 city services bills, which also include water, wastewater, stormwater, street and sidewalk maintenance and urban forestry, will include a $3.63 monthly charge for transit operations.

Currently, residents pay $3.80 per month. The fees stem from an ordinance passed in December of 2010 by the City Council.

The rates are recalibrated annually, with the change based solely on the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline in Oregon, said Corvallis Public Works Director Mary Steckel.

The decline will be the first since the program started in 2011. Ratepayers saw increases of 35.6 percent in 2012 and 1.9 percent in 2013.

Corvallis bus patrons do not pay to ride, and the city contracts out for the drivers and the maintenance of the buses.

The three main sources of funding are the transit fees that ratepayers pay, federal grants and payments Oregon State University makes for service to the campus.


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