The city of Eugene recently sent Pacific Recycling (which appears in this space on a regular basis) a warning letter for Clean Water Act violations at its facility on Cross Street. The city’s letter warns Pacific Recycling for shoddy employee environmental training practices; failure to take stormwater samples that are representative of discharges; failure to employ erosion and sediment controls; and failure to provide secondary containment for a barrel of unknown material.
The Oregon “Right to Rest Act” will be introduced in the Legislature this week, according to the office of Sen. Chip Shields, a Democrat from Portland who is sponsoring the bill. The Right to Rest Act, which is also sometimes referred to as a “Homeless Bill of Rights” by some supporters, would decriminalize the everyday and necessary acts of sleeping, sitting, standing, eating or sharing food, according to Paul Boden of WRAP, the Western Regional Advocacy Project, which is pushing for bills in Oregon, California and Colorado.
Big turnout for the Womenspace fifth annual “End the Silence” community breakfast Feb. 4. An estimated 320 to 350 people, including many local dignitaries and business owners, showed up on a cold, dark, wet morning for the 7 am free buffet at Valley River Inn. A “survivor panel” of women told their personal stories about intimate partner violence and how Womenspace services helped and continues to help them through the challenges.
• Lane Transit District is planning new routes and taking public input from 3 to 5 pm Thursday, Feb. 12, at the LTD Customer Service Center lobby at 10th and Willamette. Comments can also be made through a survey online at ltd.org. LTD Board public hearings are coming up at 5:30 pm March 18 and 5:30 pm April 6 at the Eugene Public Library.
Lane County continues to move forward with its attempts to develop the community of Goshen much to the dismay of local land-use advocates. Goshen, just south of Eugene, is a rural industrial area that has been home to several mills and is the site of designated wetlands. Developing Goshen has become a pet project of Commissioner Faye Stewart.
On Feb. 3, a wastewater feasibility study for Goshen done by Kennedy/Jenks Consultants was presented to Lane County’s Board of Commissioners for discussion.
Eugene’s food carts and trucks are sprinkled down West 11th, dotted around downtown and parked at Whiteaker breweries — their transitory nature means they’re not always easy to find. Once again, technology is here to save the day: The Street Food Eugene app for iPhone and Android debuted last month, making it a cinch to pin down your favorite food cart, check out new carts or find nearby carts.
“This app could be a pivotal tipping point in the Eugene mobile food scene,” says KC Brooks, owner of Sammitch. As of press time, the app has been downloaded about 800 times.
The weather has been hitting us with record-breaking warm and dry temperatures recently. It would be nice to greet the recently blooming flowers with joy, but there’s reason for trepidation. These warm, dry days mean, as Julie Koeberle, a hydrologist with the Natural Resources Conservation Services puts it, that “the snow has been elusive.”
• Seneca Jones Timber Company LLC, 689-1011, plans to aerial and ground spray 69.9 acres near Crow Road with 2,4-D, atrazine, clopyralid, glyphosate, hexazinone. sulfometuron methyl, Crosshair, Foam Buster and/or Grounded. See ODF notifications 2015-781-02394 and 2015-781-02596, call Brian Peterson at 935-2283 with questions.
• Seneca Jones also plans to aerially spray 54.4 acres near Wolf Creek Road and 56.9 acres near Hamm and Territorial with some of the same chemicals listed above. See ODF notification 2015-781-02390, call Dan Men
In 1992, two neuroscientists, Richard Davidson and Clifford Saron, trekked into the hills around Dharamsala in north India to measure the brain waves of Tibetan Buddhist monks. Although the journey did not yield empirical data, it was a turning point in the careers of both men, and they went on to become leaders in the science of meditation.
Tiny Tavern at 394 Blair Blvd. in the Whit has reopened under new management after being shut down by the Lane County Health Department Dec. 5. The self-described dive bar, restaurant and live music venue had a Superbowl party Sunday, and we’re hearing good things about the new, improved and more sanitary Tiny’s. It was missed while it was closed. See our Letters this week.
• Noted historian Randall Balmer of Dartmouth College will speak on “Jimmy Carter, Progressive Evangelism and the Religious Right” at 7 pm Thursday, Feb. 5, at 110 Knight Law Center on the UO campus. Ballmer is considered a leading expert on the role of religion in American life. Sponsored by The Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics. Find more upcoming Morse Center lectures at wkly.ws/1xe.
Oregon has long had the goal of reducing carbon emissions, and in 2011, an Oregon Administrative Rule declared that by 2020, we should emit 10 percent less than we did in 1990. That milestone is right around the corner, and state legislators and climate activists are legitimately concerned that we are not going to make it.
It’s National School Choice Week, a time for parents, students and teachers around the country to celebrate and recognize the diversity of school options available to kids. Sometimes all those options can be overwhelming — Eugene School District 4J alone has five alternative elementary schools.
Fortunately, the Jan. 31 Alternative Education Fair at the Eugene Public Library is here to help. The fair is a one-stop shopping opportunity for parents and students to chat with more than a dozen representatives from local charter schools, private schools and homeschooling advocates.
• Swanson Brothers, 935-2231, plans to hire Nick’s Timber Services, 503-910-1120, to spray 33.5 acres near Vaughn Road and Sturtevant Creek with Glyphosate 5.4. See ODF notification 2015-781-05431, call Dan Menk at 935-2283 with questions.
• Sean Martin, 520-9403, plans to spray 19.5 acres near Vaughn Road with Glyphosate 4 Plus and Triclopyr 3A (amine). See ODF notification 2015-781-05905, call Dan Menk at 935-2283 with questions.
Rainsong Gates, an undergraduate in human physiology at the University of Oregon, says she transferred from Lane Community College to the UO a few years ago without getting her associate degree.
“I’d reached my credit limit at Lane,” she says, “and so I transferred to the UO. I’m a non-traditional student — I’ve been in college for the last four or five years — and it was frustrating that I hadn’t received anything from Lane after having spent that much time there.”
Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) sent a warning letter to Goshen Forest Products last month for Clean Water Act violations of Oregon’s industrial stormwater discharge permit. The permit requires Goshen Forest Products to sample stormwater discharges four times a year (with samples spaced out in time to better reflect actual conditions over the course of the rainy season) and to submit sample results to DEQ once a year. Goshen Forest Products failed to perform sampling at least 14 days apart during 2013-14.
Bloxi is a new Eugene-based web business startup that appears to be quickly growing an international audience. “Bloxi is a quiz site where anyone can create, take or share quizzes,” says Bailey Koharchick, director of marketing. Find it on bloxi.com or call the company at 505-8044.
• Slow Money South Willamette Valley and Willamette Food and Farm Coalition are hosting a launch event from 6 to 9 pm Thursday, Jan. 29,atRed Wagon Creamery, 55 W. Broadway,to celebrate the first local companies and other Oregon entrepreneurs to build their businesses through Oregon’s new Community Public Offering (CPO) crowdfunding rules. See slowmoneyswv.org.
Biggie the pitbull was scheduled to be euthanized at Los Angeles County’s Carson Animal Shelter on Dec. 13. He was so shy that no one was interested in adopting him, and the shelter was out of room. But, instead of being put to sleep that day, he was picked up, fed a hamburger and driven to Oregon thanks to a network of animal rescues, animal lovers and people who provide foster homes for pets in need.
For many college students, conflicts in the Middle East and tragedies in Africa are something they might click by in their news feeds. But for a group of University of Oregon students, rules that govern conflicts such as the Geneva Conventions aren’t just an abstract theory.
Those couple days of icy, freezing temperatures last February might stick out in your mind, but while a brief spell of cold days may affect your personal impression of the weather, don’t forget that the climate is heating up across the globe, thanks to rising levels of greenhouse gases.
Overall, 2014 was Oregon’s second hottest year since record keeping started in 1895, according to researchers with the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute at Oregon State University. The average statewide temperature in Oregon in 2014 was 3 degrees above the average for the 20th century.
• Zemas LLC, 231-5363, plans to hire Andrew Albert Bluhm, 974-2021, to spray Glyphosate 5.4 with Foam Buster on 35 acres between Conger Creek and Wolf Creek Road. See ODF notification 2015-781-01508, and call Dan Menk at 935-2283 with questions.
As a transgender man who identifies as queer, Emmett Ellingson-Ford says adolescence was difficult enough navigating his gender identity, and the fact that high schools focus on heteronormative sex education didn’t help. Now, Ellingson-Ford, as president of the student-run Gender & Sexuality Alliance at Lane Community College, is hosting LCC’s first-ever Sex Symposium Jan. 23.
The state legislative session begins Feb. 2. Several bills have already been introduced, and House Speaker Tina Kotek (D-Portland) confirmed at City Club of Eugene last Friday that education will take top priority. The topic could prove divisive, even in Oregon’s Legislature with its Democratic majority.