Month: May 2010

IN THE RING: Should we drill for oil off Oregon’s coast?

<b>Jeff Anderson, UFCW Local 555 Secretary-Treasurer:</b> “No, I opposed this crazy idea long before the current spill in the gulf. It was a bad idea when all the Republicans went wild with “Drill Baby Drill”. Oregon’s pristine ecosystem must be protected from this short term thinking.This Native Oregonian will fight any initiative to drill for oil on the Oregon Coast. We have so many renewabal resourses availabal in Oregon. We must embrace Hydro, Wind, Solar and bring on new resouses such as Hydro fuel cell technology.” <b>Art Bobrowitz, Compass Rose Consulting:</b> “Yes, I would support drilling as long as it is a part of other types of off shore renewable energy sources. I would not support rampant oil drilling rigs with no plan. Any drilling would have to include proven technology and research. I would like to see Oregon’s university system take on the project of balancing Oregon’s environmental off shore future while creating the research, technology and jobs for different types of energy resource development. This would be an excellent opportunity for next generation education, energy research and breaking our dependency on Middle East oil. “Will we have risk? Of course we will. Our current oil dependency is a no win situation. What this country spends and has spent in litigation dollars could well have paid for significant research. We have to get rid of that blank check. What...

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Police position may not be cut

By JASON COX Of the Keizertimes Fee increases, ongoing cuts and pay freezes will stabilize a city general fund that is falling about $178,000 short for the coming fiscal year in the city manager’s proposed budget. And while Keizer Police will be reducing overtime and eliminating non-mandatory training, in the proposed budget they will not be forced to lay off a police officer. The budget committee and city council previously indicated supporting a cop cut at an April work session, but that appears to be off the table. “That was going into the budget,” said City Manager Chris Eppley. “I actually took that out based on conversations I had after the fact with councilors, committee members and citizens generally. … Although they identified that as a direction to go, the community probably wasn’t going to be willing to stomach that kind of approach.” City leaders said at a Budget Committee hearing Tuesday the increases to the sewer franchise fee – and the creation of a stormwater franchise fee – would average about $13.14 per household per year. And with ongoing cuts – in addition to overtime and salary freezes, the Keizer Community Library, parks and other programs are expected to suffer – city staff believe the general fund will weather the storm created by a bad economy and subsequent lower-than-expected revenues. “We used to say that revenues we forecasted...

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Some parks may not have toilets soon

FRIDAY UPDATE: The Budget Committee restored portable toilets and weed control within Keizer parks Thursday night. The budget still must be approved by the Keizer City Council. By JASON COX Of the Keizertimes As the city looks to close a budget gap, many parks – quite literally– won’t have a pot to pee in. They’re asking for $1,600 to bring back portable toilets for six parks in the next fiscal year. Currently, Keizer Rapids, Claggett Creek and Chalmers Jones parks have funded portable toilets in the next budget cycle. Keizer Little League Park has permanent bathroom facilities. Without the restored funding, those at Country Glen, Bob Newton, Ben Miller, Northview, Willamette Manor and Wallace House parks will be taken out by the end of June. There is, included in the budget, toilets for Bob Newton, Claggett Creek and Willamette Manor for a nine-week roving recreation program from June 22-August 19. It was a unanimous recommendation from the parks board, Chair Jeanne Bond-Esser said. The board is also asking that $4,800 be added back for fertilization and weed control. Some board members fear that eliminating the maintenance will only increase costs down the road. “None of these seven city parks are receiving it this spring, either, due to the freeze in the budget,” Bond-Esser told the Budget Committee on Tuesday. “That makes two consecutive years for the parks not to...

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Council passes development regs, gets an earful on signs

The Keizer City Council approved changes that would make it easier to construct well houses in residential neighborhoods. It eliminates the city’s need to obtain a conditional use permit to construct within a residential neighborhood. It must be landscaped and otherwise blend in with the neighborhood, according to rules passed. Councilors also got an earful from numerous local business owners who said the city’s sign codes were overly restrictive and unevenly enforced. See Friday’s Keizertimes for...

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Keizer’s first doctor

I’m very happy with the way my life has turned out,” says Dr. Vernon D. Casterline. And should be. His life story reads like a Horatio Alger tale, but it is true. Keizer’s first doctor was born on his father’s homestead at Vida, Montana, in 1917. Widowed early, his grandmother Casterline had taken her six young sons to northeast Montana to homestead “to give them something to do” as she puts it. When he was about a year-and-a half old, his parents, his sister, Lois, and his older brother Garold, rode the cattle train back to the Twin Cities to visit their maternal grandmother in Clinton, Minnesota. While there, his mother contracted the flu that killed so many Americans after World War I, and died in January 1919. It was decided that his father would take five-year-old Garold back to Montana, but Grandma Heacock, who also had been widowed and had to raise ten children by herself, would take three-year-old Lois and baby Vernon. Later Vernon and Lois attend a one-room school near Clinton, and took the rest of their elementary schooling at Ortonville before returning to Clinton. After completing three years at Clinton High, Vernon decided to join his brother in Glasgow, Montana, where Garold was working on the Fort Peck dam while taking his last year of high school. Vernon’s current events teacher helped him to get...

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