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Slant 3-6-2014

Mike Huckabee, the former right-wing presidential candidate, is coming to town April 2 as a fundraiser for the local Community Action Network. County Commissioner Jay Bozievich is likely to be there with bells on since the CAN political action committee sent him checks in February totaling $4,500. Bozievich, a Tea Party darling, needs to raise a lot of bucks because he has a serious and organized challenger in Dawn Lesley. Check out the list of Bozievich financial supporters on the state Orestar website at http://wkly.ws/1p2. It’s a who’s who of timber, gravel and real estate interests. Bozievich has paid $11,500 to the Oklahoma firm of Wilson Perkins Allen to do opinion research and messaging, the same right-wing consulting firm used by national Tea Party leaders Ted Cruz and Mike Lee. 

• Right after we get the news that Steve Mokrohisky of Nevada has accepted the offer to be the new Lane County administrator, we see that fired former administrator Liane Richardson, who is now using her maiden name Inkster, applied for a three-year term on the Oregon State Bar’s Disciplinary Board. Do we dare ask the OSB if “it takes one to know one” when it comes to ethics complaints? OSB apparently agrees as it is now investigating Inskter’s conduct at the county. Lane County is still dealing with fallout from Inkster’s reign, including a recent audit that showed she “created an environment where staff were uncomfortable questioning decisions they did not agree with, for fear they would lose their jobs.” Good luck Steve, and welcome to Lane County. Props to the County Commission for doing a real search this time instead of just appointing an insider.

 • This is a plea for civility at public lectures in Eugene. Detractors of James Hansen shouted down other questioners at Hansen’s panel  on “Merging Climate Science  with the Law and Communications” on March 1 at the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference at UO. The rude ones disagree with Hansen’s willingness to look at nuclear power for America’s future. But wait. Hansen is the former director of NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, now at Columbia University’s Earth Institute and devoting his life to fighting extreme climate change. He has earned a civil audience. 

Susan Ban of ShelterCare did a fine job at City Club of Eugene Feb. 28 explaining what her agency does in collaboration with other social service institutions to provide housing and other services in Lane County. She reinforced the “housing first” message: It’s cheaper and more effective in the long run to get disadvantaged and disenfranchised people off the streets and out of tents and into shelter. Housing is a prerequisite for progress in physical, mental and economic health. Congrats to ShelterCare for acquiring an old warehouse in the Whiteaker and finally creating a permanent headquarters and service hub. The building at 499 W. 4th Ave. is expected to be ready in September. See sheltercare.org to help out with the capital campaign. 

• Quite an uproar on EW’s Facebook page after we posted a shot of a framed Futurama cartoon hanging at the EPD West University Public Safety Station on Feb. 28. The cartoon pokes fun at Eugene’s “hobo jungle.” The public outcry was swift, from demands that EPD needs sensitivity training to complaints that “spending tax payers money to further any prejudice is wrong.” Some pointed out that it was an issue of free speech while several say they went to Kitty Piercy requesting that the cartoon be removed ASAP. On March 2, the EPD Chief Pete Kerns commented on our original post saying: “The cartoon in the West University Public Safety Station has been removed. Our department goes to great lengths to care humanely for all the people we serve. The officer and staff at the WUPSS have been at the center of our officers’ efforts to distribute bedding and clothing to people who are homeless. I encourage you to visit the station to see the welcoming environment our officer and staff have created to serve the varied populations who live, work and go to school in the neighborhood, particularly students and homeless.”