Day: November 19, 2010

Even during hard times

We’re thankful that we live in a community where citizens help others, even during hard times. Keizerites have always been generous to their fellow man when it comes to feeding the hungry or providing winter coats to the cold or, especially, helping kids. Earlier this month St. Edward Catholic Church held a drive to collect coats, jackets and sweaters for those less fortunate in need of the basic necessary of warm clothes at the outset of winter. Last week more than 300 people attended Keizer Young Life’s annual dessert auction and raised more than $25,000 to help, in part, to fund programs that help local kids, some whom are homeless or live in less than ideal conditions. In a few weeks the Keizer Network of Women (KNOW), a part of the Keizer Chamber Foundation, will distribute food boxes and toys to more than 100 families in need.  The food and toys will not only brighten the holidays for these families but it will give them the things many of us take for granted—food on the table. When the going gets tough Keizer opens their hearts and their wallets.  It is heartening that people who may be in hard economic times themselves still find enough in the cupboard to pass on those who are living on the edge. Some people call it giving back to the community, we call it...

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Lady Celts take 6th in state

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Their time in the state playoffs may not have have ended precisely as they hoped, but the girls of the McNary High School varsity volleyball team were excited enough having defied most expectations – and with a sixth place finish. “After losing seven seniors, I wasn’t sure how this season would go,” said Simona Arnautov, a McNary senior. “But we all played with heart and showed people what we’re all about.” The Celtics faced Jesuit High School Friday, Nov. 12, in the quarterfinal round of the playoffs and faltered under the vicious offense of the perennial powerhouse. McNary lost in three sets, 25-15, 25-22, 25-12. “We just didn’t execute as well as we had been,” said Dustin Walker, McNary head coach. Among its arsenal of talent, Jesuit boasts one of the top talents in the state, Liz Brenner, whose attacks sounded like cannons firing as they reverberated around the gym. “It’s kind of scary cause you’re afraid for your face,” said Celt Keri Stein. At one point, McNary setter Megan Holland got sideswiped by a ball on a dig and the team had to call a time out a few plays later as she recovered. McNary’s best set with Jesuit was the second. The Celtics kept pace with Crusaders in a back-and-forth match, but Jesuit crowded them out on the final points...

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911 fee opponents pack Council, but it moves forward

By JASON COX Of the Keizertimes The seeds for a franchise fee on wireless telecommunications companies – a cost that could be passed on to customers – were sown Monday. The Keizer City Council opted in a 6-1 vote to give themselves authority to establish a franchise fee primarily targeting wireless communications companies, i.e. cell phone service providers. The stated reason was to recover some of the costs associated with providing 911 service to residents, along with radio communications and an area-wide records system for police officers. Because the vote was not unanimous the matter will go before the council again for a second reading. The ordinance would create a licensing system for telecom companies. Those firms would have to provide revenue information to the city in order to ascertain their yearly fee. Firms with less than $10,000 in annual revenue from Keizerites would be exempt. Councilors will also have to pass a resolution setting the amount. City Manager Chris Eppley has proposed 3 percent. A third of that would be sent to the Keizer Fire District. This could come before the Council as soon as its first December meeting. A packed house showed up, mostly speaking against the proposal. Some residents said they had been receiving robocalls – automated telephone calls – urging residents to come out to the meeting and speak against the proposal. Americans for Prosperity sponsored...

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The off-season

The next few months will be a good time for all vested parties to start formulating a real plan for making Keizer a sports tournament town. The idea has been kicking around for a few years.  Keizer Youth Sports Association (KYSA) brought a number of events to the Little League fields.  Developing our economy will encompass many different things, but one of the easiest is to proclaim ourselves a tournament town and then bring in teams all year around. Softball, baseball, basketball and soccer tournaments can all be lured to Keizer.  We are  home to one of the best youth baseball complexes in the state.  School gymnaisums can be used for basketball tourneys.  And we have enough fields to play soccer. It will better for Keizer if regional tournaments are attracted because that means kids and their parents coming for an overnight stay in our town.  That translates into room stays and meals bought from local restaurants. To make Keizer a true tournament town means everyone must work together.  The Keizer Chamber of Commerce, which doubles as our local visitor’s center should invite representatives of the various groups who want to develop tournaments to meet and plan out the year and strategize—scheduling, promotion of local businesses, promotion of the city, and use of facilities throughout the city. No group should go it alone, everyone can benefit from having 100...

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More apartments in Area C plan

By JASON COX Of the Keizertimes More apartments have been added to the mix in a formal plan for Keizer Station’s Area C, anchored by a 116,000 retail store. [MAP: 1] The full plan was submitted to the city of Keizer early this week. It will be considered by the Planning Commission in January, who will forward a recommendation to the Keizer City Council. Extension of McLeod Lane from Chemawa Road to Ridge Drive is a key portion of the project. Just south of this extension – and parallel to Chemawa Road NE – is a proposed 53,000 square foot, two story medical building. A 3.47 acre portion just south of the planned medical facility would be set aside for multi-family residential, plans indicate, with three three-story buildings totaling 73 units. The big-box store would include a 6,800 square foot “garden center” along with a drive-through window on the east side of the building. This building would be located east of Chemawa Road NE. Nearby would be a total of five other buildings – two office, two retail and one designated “pad” in the plans. Developers indicated earlier this year the “pad” site could be home to a restaurant. Along the north side of McLeod between Lockhaven Drive NE and Chemawa Road NE are two five-story multi-use buildings along with a retail building of about 8,750 square feet. The...

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