Day: August 21, 2015

No more Tightwad Tuesdays

By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes Say goodbye to Tuesday Community Days at Keizer Community Center. When the new city hall opened in 2009, the city contracted with an outside company to manage the facility. Those duties were brought in-house the following year and a new rental rate structure was adopted in 2011. The rates have been the same since then, but have drawn increased scrutiny during the last couple of budget seasons. Revising the rates became a high priority in the spring since about $90,000 a year in general fund money is being used to offset losses from facility rentals. In particular, the Tuesday Community Day discount rate – sometimes referred to as Tightwad Tuesday – has come under fire. While the intent six years ago was to allow groups to rent space in the community center for an entire day at a flat rate, state agencies were the most common users, taking advantage of the lower rates and stacking up meetings or conferences on Tuesdays. By taking advantage of those rates, that meant less revenue for the city. “The Community Day rate is not being utilized by Keizer groups,” city recorder Tracy Davis said. That has now been changed. A resolution approved by Keizer City Councilors on Monday eliminates the Tuesday Community Day special rates. Small rooms (1,000 square feet) will now be $25 per hour, as...

Read More

Haggen to close its Keizer store

    By CRAIG MURPHY Of the Keizertimes It wasn’t that long ago Keizer had three grocery stores. Soon, there could be just one. In late April, the Albertsons at 5450 River Road North became a Haggen. Washington-based Haggen went from 18 stores mainly in Washington to 164 around the West Coast in a short amount of time, taking advantage of conditions from a Albertsons-Safeway merger. Worries at the time about such fast growth proved well founded, as the company sent out a press release Aug. 14 announcing the closure of 27 stores. The closure list had five Oregon locations listed, including the one in Keizer. The news came just a few weeks after a Los Angeles Times story reported Albertsons was suing Haggen for $41 million, with Albertsons claiming Haggen failed to pay for inventory that was part of the changeover at 38 of the acquired stores. Deborah Pleva of Weinstein PR, speaking on behalf of Haggen, said closures or a review to evaluate how new stores were doing was not in the company’s original plans. “We expected to operate all 164 stores when we agreed to the acquisition, and it was a great opportunity to introduce the Haggen experience to more shoppers,” Pleva said on Tuesday. “Haggen will continue to evaluate its operations to identify opportunities to strengthen its overall business. While the decision to close a...

Read More

How do we replace Haggen?

After a big announcement about its move into Keizer, then several days of remodeling, Haggen Food grocery opened its doors. The store went from stodgy to brighter and looser. Alas, it was not to last. Haggen’s Keizer store will close in October. It wasn’t anything Keizer shoppers did or didn’t do—it all has to do with business in America today. The Keizer location was one of 146 former Safeway or Albertsons stores spun off by the equity firm that owns them. With a good reputation in it home territory of northwest Washington state, Haggen management saw an opportunity to join the big guys and own stores throughout the west.  It seems safe to conclude that Haggen decided that not all 146 stores it bought were winners and made the quick decision to rid itself of 27 stores it did not want. That’s business. Shoppers can bemoan Keizer being a one-store grocery store. In actuallity a majority of Keizer shoppers head to discount grocers such as Costco, Winco and Walmart. Neighborhood mom-and-pop markets gave way to grocery stores which gave way to discount mega-grocery stores. Business will always find a path to the consumer’s wallet—the grocery industry is no different. Food stores operate on thin margins so maximizing every dollar in sales is paramount, be it inside the store or by the whole operation, closing underperforming stores, locating stores in...

Read More

A beautiful Blue day

Saturday, Aug. 22, will be a bright and sunny day. It will be beautiful not only weather-wise but because McNary High School will unveil its new artifical turf at Flesher Field during Blue Day. This will be the fourth Blue Day staged by the McNary High School Athletic Booster Club. The club has planned and raised funds for the big project that will allow 10 times as many events to be held at the stadium. The former grass field was not always user friendly, especially in our wet weather in the fall and spring. The marching band could not practice on it because hundreds of tromping feet over time turned the field into a muddy, mushy mess. Now the band can practice to its heart’s content on the field. The football, soccer and lacrosse teams will be able to practice and play without worry. Blue Day is not only the unveiling of the new turf. It is an opportunity for the community to gather and support the many teams of the school, enjoy barbecue and celebrate what makes Keizer a good place to live: neighbors and friends joining together to make a vision become reality. Blue Day will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Attendance is free but donations will eagerly be accepted by the Booster Club.  ...

Read More
  • 1
  • 2