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Biz Beat 6-20-2013

Delta Sand & Gravel and Babb Construction are the target of a class action lawsuit by four former employees on behalf of themselves and other current and former employees, according to attorney Alan Leiman of the Eugene law firm Leiman & Johnson, LLC. The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court in Eugene, alleges violations of overtime provisions and other Oregon labor laws. The complaint seeks damages in excess of $3.5 million. Leiman says in a statement that the lawsuit alleges that Delta and Babb “engaged in a pattern of unlawful pay practices that resulted in the chronic underpayment of wages to employees of both companies.” A previous $400,000 payment by the companies that followed an investigation by the Oregon Bureau of Labor and Industries “falls far short of what is owed,” says Leiman.

KLSR and KEVU TV stations are not part of the shake-up of local TV stations involved in mergers and layoffs, according to Mark Metzger, VP and general manager of the two stations. “There is some confusion about who owns our stations,” Metzger says. KLSR and KEVU are owned by Patricia Smullin, a longtime resident of Medford. “Her company was established in 1932 and is the longest continuous independent broadcast group in the West,” he says. KSLR is the local Fox affiliate and does have a “news share” arrangement with KVAL, one of the stations to be sold to the conservative Sinclair Broadcast Group. The new owners of KMTR recently laid off most of its news staff, and Metzger says he’s looking at his options for local news coverage. Meanwhile, KEZI has hired the popular, laid-off KMTR news anchors Matt Templeton and Renee McCullough. Lots of unhappy chatter on the KMTR Facebook page.

Banfield Pet Hospital opened a south Eugene veterinary facility June 15 at 2858 Willamette St., in the building near Market of Choice previously occupied by Party City. Veterinarians include Annastasia Burright, Melissa Wood and Emily Purbaugh. Banfield has more than 800 animal hospitals across the country. The new location will be open from 8 am to 7 pm Monday through Saturday and 9 am to 5 pm Sundays. The other Banfield facility is on Chad Drive. See banfield.com. 

Viking Braggot Company is a new brewery now operating in west Eugene. Co-owners are Daniel McTavish and Addison Stern, recent grads of the UO Lundquist College of Business. A grand opening celebration is being planned for June 28. The brewery offers a unique brew that originated with the Vikings. “Braggot is one of the oldest fermented drinks known to man that has both malt and honey,” the owners say. Some modern twists are added to the original recipes, such as using different honeys and aging the brews in bourbon barrels. The brewery is at 520 Commercial St., Unit F, phone number is 653-8371 and website is drinkviking.com.

A benefit for Occupy Medical’s mobile health care clinic will begin at 6 pm Sunday, June 23, at Cozmic, 199 W. 8th Ave. Music by Steel Wool and Satori Bob. Sliding scale entry starts at $5. Proceeds will go to support the mobile clinic’s free services that are offered from noon to 4 pm Sundays at the Park Blocks downtown.

Pints for the Planet is a fundraiser for BRING Recycling from 5 to 9 pm Monday, June 24, at Ninkasi, 272 Van Buren. Music by Kudana begins at 6 pm. Proceeds will go to help the nonprofit BRING complete construction at its Planet Improvement Center in Glenwood. See bringrecycling.org.

Mountain Rose Herbs in Eugene has made the top-10 list of “Best Green Companies to Work For in Oregon,” according to Kori Rodley of the company. The award, given by Oregon Business magazine May 29, recognized Mountain Rose as number nine out of 440 organizations that participated in the survey. Criteria included a survey of employees and an analysis of the business’s sustainability practices. See mountainroseherbs.com.