News Briefs: Advocates for No-Kill | Measure 37 Fix May Be Worse | Taste of the Good Life | City Offers Some WiFi | Eugeneans at Hanford | Enviro Update | Lane County Herbicide Spray Schedule | Corrections/Clarifications |
Slant: Short opinion pieces and rumor-chasing notes
Springfield program interweaves academics, arts
Kucinich Visits Eugene
Presidential candidate touts passion for peace
ADVOCATES CALL FOR NO-KILL
Bearing signs that said "Working for You, But Killing Our Cats and Dogs," and "LCARA … It's Just Killing Me," a group of Eugene animal advocates asked that Lane County Animal Regulation Authority (LCARA) become a "no-kill" animal facility.
The demonstration took place April 2 on the steps of the Lane County Courthouse and was aimed at county commissioners who the advocates say have ignored the "No kill/Neuter/Adopt Resolution" since it was presented to them in August 2006.
Many of the no-kill advocates came to the cause after eight cats were shot in the head by Swanson's Pest Management in July 2005. In response to these killings, county commissioners made the intentional killing of a dog or cat illegal last September. Now the advocates would like to see the commissioners go a step further in reducing the numbers of animals euthanized in the county.
Susan McDonald, one of the protest organizers and a member of the No Kill Community Committee said, "No-kill advocates believe in the true meaning of euthanasia." She described no-kill policy as "not killing adoptable or behaviorally or medically treatable animals."
Protestors expressed frustration with LCARA's current rates of what they called "unnecessary killing." During 2005/06, LCARA took in 2,126 dogs and euthanized 601. Of those dogs, 196 were killed due to lack of space. In the same time period, LCARA took in 1,710 cats, and euthanized 1,188, of those cats; 1,053 were deemed unadoptable.
Molly Sargent, who also organized the protest, pointed to the success of programs such as the adoptions volunteers have organized through PetSmart, which found homes for 80 of Lane County's cats. She said, "If the commissioners tell LCARA to go no-kill, they will do it."
LCARA volunteer and no-kill advocate Lesa Fisher said that she believed more cats could be adopted out if volunteers were allowed to spend more time grooming and socializing animals. "LCARA is short-staffed," she said, "and we want to help." — Camilla Mortensen
MEASURE 37 FIX MAY BE WORSE
A state land use watchdog group raised concerns last week that a proposed Measure 37 compromise may make the situation with the pro-sprawl law worse.
1000 Friends of Oregon's list of questions and concerns with a draft proposal by the Legislature's Committee on Land Use Fairness includes allegations that the proposal may:
• fail to cover already filed claims;
• allow up to three homes even where Measure 37 wouldn't have allowed homes and where there was no loss in property value;
• allow fraudulent loss in value claims and allow waivers disproportionate to loss in value;
• be worse than the current measure in allowing transferability of waivers;
• allow claimants to squat indefinitely on their claims without building;
• allow waivers for commercial Wal-Mart or mini-mart development; and
• fail to protect vineyards and range land.
1000 Friends called on citizens to contact members of the committee to express their concerns. Local state Sen. Floyd Prozanski (firstname.lastname@example.org) is co-chairman of the Legislature's committee. — Alan Pittman
TASTE OF THE GOOD LIFE
Oregon is known for many things: lush environment, cold oceans, tasty beers and excellent, large-scale wineries like King Estates. But cropping up everywhere are smaller wineries that, while not big in scale, are equally massive in taste. To celebrate the underground wine scene, The Oregon Indie Winery Road Show is bringing to Eugene a sample of what these small, independent producers and distributors are creating.
Oregon Wine Warehouse owner Robert Wolfe, who hand-selected the event's participating wineries, says the inspiration for this event came from the Portland Indie Wine Festival, where he judged more than 90 wines, which ranged from terrible to outstanding. The standouts, to his surprise, came from wineries he had never heard of.
Le Cadeau, Boedecker Cellars, Amalie Robert and Racine Wine Company are among the wineries Wolfe selected for the event. Gourmet local food producers like Marché and Hideaway Bakery will supply tasty treats to snack on between sips.
According to the press release, "These wine producers have exceptionally small production and are self distributed — making the wines extremely hard to obtain, even in Oregon." So kick back and treat yourself to some good wine and food while listening to the jazz stylings of pianist Steve Larson.
The two-day event, April 6 and 7, is open to the public and starts at 5 pm on Friday and 3 pm on Saturday. Tickets are $20 at the door at the Oregon Wine Warehouse, 943 Olive St. (342-8598). — Amanda Burhop
CITY OFFERS SOME WIFI
Portland, San Francisco and other cities are in the midst of efforts to connect many of their citizens with free public wireless internet, but Eugene's approach is far more modest.
The city of Eugene is pursuing a strategy of providing public WiFi in and around city facilities throughout the community. So far free wireless internet is available only in all three city libraries, City Council meeting rooms, the City Hall courtyard, the Hult Center and Eugene Airport.
The city plans to extend service to the downtown Park Blocks later this spring and to pools and community centers by next summer. — Alan Pittman
EUGENEANS AT HANFORD
A caravan of anti-nuclear protesters from Eugene traveled to Pasco, Wash., in mid-March for a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) hearing. "The DOE snuck this hearing in so quietly that very few anti-nuclear voices were in attendance," says Rick Gold of the group. "Without our contingent of nine Oregon imports, they would have been hopelessly outnumbered."
|Aerial view of the Hanford Nuclear Reservation|
The Eugene group spent time interviewing local residents on the street, including young people. "They said they couldn't swim in the river or eat the fish they caught or they would get very sick," says Gold. "'Low level' nuclear waste from the nine reactors along the 50-mile 'Hanford reach' of the Columbia River, dumped for decades in unlined pits, has been leaching in underground plumes toward the river, eventually contaminating the salmon spawning grounds. Local residents with whom we spoke consistently recited a delusional belief that the contamination would be washed away by the river and the sea and pose no threat to us downstream consumers."
Despite years of cleanup research and billions of dollars spent, the sources of groundwater contamination still haven't been identified or cleaned up, says Gold.
The hearing began with a DOE presentation of a proposed Global Nuclear Energy Partnership (GNEP). "The global aspect of this program is that America will become the nuclear sewage pit of the planet, taking highly toxic, highly radioactive, extremely difficult-to-handle nuclear waste from any and all countries," says Gold. "And then we will ship it, truck it, train it to one or two American sites and finally enrich it. Pull out what we like, and pile up (or disperse to the winds and waters) what we don't. And get this, the startup will cost taxpayers hundreds of billions of dollars! And there's no mention of all the deaths along the way!"
At the hearing the Eugene group expressed its distrust of nuclear energy production and its preference for solar, wind, tidal and geothermal sources that produce no hazardous waste or byproducts.
"Hanford is one of 11 U.S. nuclear installations in the running for two or three selected sites, and its citizenry was bidding hard for the very lucrative contracts," says Gold. "They testified about their expertise, experienced personnel, established facilities and distinguished history of nuclear productivity."
This week's email report from Citizens for Public Accountability (CPA) contains the following updates and action items:
• The proposed sewer line through the West Eugene Wetlands is the subject of a public hearing before the Oregon DEQ from 6 to 8 pm Thursday, April 6 at Peterson Barn Community Center, 870 Berntzen Road in Eugene. "This isn't just 'any' sewer," says CPA. "This would be a 4-foot tall sewer pipe in a 21-foot deep trench into west Eugene wetlands that we (and Army Corps of Engineers) recently got Hayden Homes to back out of." The sewer and trench would begin at Avalon and Legacy Streets and continue south through major wetlands. "The permit was written when city staff thought the wetlands between Greenhill Tributary and Amazon A Channel were going to become a housing development. Now they're going to remain wetlands. Ecologically speaking, this sewer application stinks," says CPA.
• The Federal Highway Administration has issued a revised record of decision on the proposed West Eugene Parkway (WEP). The report, available at the ODOT website, outlines the reasons for the "no build" decision, including the conflict resolution report from the Osprey Group that visited Lane County in 2006. Also cited are "environmental concerns from resource agencies," such as the Army Corp of Engineers and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.
• Time to stamp out field burning? Both the Lane County Commission and Eugene City Council have voted to support Rep. Paul Holvey's HB 3000 to end field burning in Oregon. "While local residents, businesses and most local legislators understand the impact of this archaic practice to the public health, education and lobbying of other legislators will be critical to passage of this bill," says CPA.
Also on the mailing are updates on Measure 37, the county tax proposal, the Willamette Greenway and nutria issues. To get on the CPA email list, send a note to email@example.com
Lane County Herbicide Spray Schedule
Oregon Legislation: School Pesticide Buffer Bill (SB 20) Hearing in Salem Tuesday April 10th, 7:30 AM in Hearing Room D. See news at: www.forestlanddwellers.org/News/
Near Marcola and Mohawk Schools: Weyerhaeuser (741-5211) will aerially spray 139 acres with Attrex 4L, Atrazine WSP, Oust XP, 2,4-D LV6, Velpar (No. 55314).
Transition Management (484-6706) will ground spray 36 acres with Glyphosate, Hexazinone, and Clopyralid herbicides near Doak Creek (No. 50313) in addition to aerial spraying (No. 50146).
Compiled by Jan Wroncy, Forestland Dwellers: 342-8332, www.forestlanddwellers.org
• In Sally Sheklow's "Living Out" column March 15, the photo of the Salem rally March 7 should have been credited to Jennifer Meyer.
• In the two theater reviews last weeks, captions for the photos were inadvertently omitted. The caption in the Man of La Mancha review should have read "Michael P. Watkins and Claude Offenbacher play the Quixotic knight and his loyal Sancho Panza, respectively." The La Mancha photo credit should have read John Bauguess. For the review of Frozen, the caption should have read, "Ralph (Dan Pegoda) alarms the audience as Nancy (Ellen Chace) and Agnetha (Storm Kennedy) talk in the background."
If you believe the Eugene police, the Magaña/Lara scandal wasn't the result of their ignoring or turning a blind eye to numerous women's complaints over a half dozen years that the officers were using their badges to force sex. It wasn't the result of grossly lazy and lax supervision and discipline of police by police. It was the blame of those darn liberals and affirmative action in the human resources department. This would be laughable if it wasn't so scary. These backward people continue to run around our city with guns and little accountability. The days of good-old-boy police departments ended a half century ago with Bull Connor. The police demand that elected leaders acclaim their conduct under Magaña/Lara as representative of the best law enforcement agency in Oregon. Acclaim a department that allowed more than a dozen women to be abused over six years despite numerous complaints? Good grief! Citizens should demand that their elected leaders launch a real, credible and independent investigation to hold individual officers responsible for failing to stop the sex abuse. Without a strong, clear message that such conduct was wrong, it will happen again.
K-12 education is getting a boost in the new state budget coming out of the Joint Ways and Means Committee, according to Rep. Phil Barnhart, but he tells us higher ed is not doing so well. Sagging state support for LCC means cuts in professional technical programs such as nursing. At the university level, state funding will be inadequate to meet the growing demand for additional doctors and health care workers. Capital construction is also getting short-changed. Some good things are in the budget, such as more state troopers, not to mention some road repair funds to help Oregon counties facing cutbacks in Secure Rural Schools funding. Meanwhile, all 15 branches of the public library system in Jackson County are expected to close April 6 due to county budget woes, and some southwestern counties are facing massive cutbacks in basic services. Oregon's in trouble regardless of whether Congress restores federal payments to counties, and the only long-term solution is for the Legislature to overhaul our state tax system. Business and industry once paid their fair share, but Republicans in Salem over the years have managed to shift the bulk of the corporate tax burden onto the backs of lower- and middle-income Oregonians. It's time to shift it back.
Recall Commissioner Bobby Green? Bad idea. We're longtime critics of Green's environmental record, and the county income tax as presented is a bad idea. But come on, people. The recall process is intended for malfeasance in office — illegal acts — not for bad decisions. And let's face it: All the choices currently available to the county are bad ones.
Honk us out of Iraq? Two weeks ago in this column we wrote about a new anti-war campaign just beginning in Lane County. The idea is for people all over the country to honk their horns or ring their bicycle bells at noon every Monday to send an audible reminder across our communities that the American people are fed up with the U.S. war in Iraq. The group was so new it didn't even have a website, but that's changed. The www.WorldLiveInPeace.comsite is up and running.
Dennis Kucinich offered an inspiring message of self-empowerment in his talks in Eugene and Corvallis this week. Rather than blaming mainstream media or runaway campaign spending for our political chaos, he says we need to give ourselves more credit and to take advantage of new technologies. "We are all mediums and messengers," he says, with the capacity to organize, create communities, solve local problems and even bring about peace on a global scale. What dissipates creative energy and drive, he says, is fear, worry and anger. In his run for the presidency, for example, he ignores all talk about what will happen if he doesn't win. "To do what I do requires perfect faith, a singular focus on the outcome."
A distress call went out late last week. The HIV Alliance mobile outreach van died, and the nonprofit needs a reliable vehicle for its needle exchange, needle clean-up and outreach testing services. Call 342-5088 if you can help.
SLANT includes short opinion pieces, observations and rumor-chasing notes compiled by the EW staff. Heard any good rumors lately? Contact Ted Taylor at 484-0519, firstname.lastname@example.org
BOB CLAYTON and STU SANDINE
Database developer Bob Clayton started playing drums as a fifth grader in Allendale, Mich. "I played in various rock and heavy-metal bands," he says. Clayton got into guitar and piano years later, after graduation from South Eugene and the UO. In 2000, he contacted Station 7 about mentoring at-risk teens. "I was an at-risk teen," he explains. "I had mentors who made a huge difference." Clayton launched the ACCHORD Music Mentorship Program, part of the ACCHORD non-profilt that provides Music for Healing in area health-care facilities. AMP volunteers have since given more than 1,000 lessons, and AMP has given 18 guitars to students who completed 10 lessons. AMP students have recorded two CDs. A Bend native, a UO student, and a jazz guitarist, Stu Sandine volunteered for AMP after he found it on CraigsList.com. "Right now I give lessons once a week," he says. "There's a group of regulars and others just giving it a shot." As of last month, Sandine has taken over as director of AMP, while Clayton has retired to spend more time with his own kids. Learn more at www.musicmentorship.org