Grass Roots Government

Grass Roots Government

Community Diversity Engagement Committee

Meeting held: Oct. 5, 2023

In attendance: Tammy Kunz, Stephanie Cross, Carrie Brown, Thais Rodick, Nevaeh Music

Councilor Laura Reid, Councilor Shaney Starr, Asst. City Manager Tim Wood, Deputy City Recorder Dawn Wilson

Absent: Councilor Shaney Starr, Benita Picazo,

What happened: Three citizens appeared to make comments about the Neighborhood Traffic Management plan. Comments addressed the threshold of affected residents being lowered from 75% to 50%m as well as the issue of how some neighborhoods do not have sidewalks or have poor quality sidewalks.

An observance of Native American Heritage Month was announced and begins Oct. 15 and lasts until Nov. 15.

Neighborhood Traffic Management Program had several sections investigated to include several “equity lens” agreements. The agreements discussed were that all neighbors receive equitable treatment, that modes of transportation remain equitable, that approval processes for businesses require an equitable percentage of respondents in neighborhood locations, an approval process for the program and resource and budget allocation based on neighborhood populations.

Parks and Recreation Advisory Board

Meeting Held: Oct. 10, 2023

In attendance: Tanya Hamilton, Lisa Cejka, Katie Brady, David Louden, Gwen Carr, Matt Lawyer

Councilor Dan Kohler, Parks Division Manager Robert Johnson

What happened: No comments were made by the public.

Rhonda Rich, President of the West Keizer Neighborhood Assocation, submitte a grant request for up to $600 to conduct a clean-up at Wallace House Park to both beautify the area and purchase plants and equipment.

A grant request was also received from the Keizer Arts Commission to install a “Rosalie’s Silly Cows” sign and sculpture in Claggett Creek Park. The motion was tabled until the next meeting.

The next meeting is Nov. 14, 2023.

Planning Commission Meeting

Meeting held: Oct. 11, 2023

In attendance: Matt Lawyer, Jeremy Grenz, Jane Herb, Sara Hutches, Mo Avishan, Angelica Sarmiento Avendano

Councilor Kyle Juran, City Attorney, Shannon Johnson, Planning Director Shane Witham, City Recorder Melissa Bisset

What happened: Several citizens made public comments including Francisco Saldivar who thanked the Commission for its hard work and his time as a member of it. Shane Witham also made a public comment in regards to walkable mixed-use areas.

Two new commissioners, Rob Witters and Fernando Lopez were both sworn into their positions. Lopez commented that his reason for joining the commission was to bring his unique lens to the board. Witters said his reasoning is wanting to contribute to his community as he has been following news in the town for a long time.

Matt Lawyer was elected commission chair and Sara Hutches as vice chair.

A presentation was also given about walkable mixed use areas, or more specifically, Keizer’s Climate-Friendly areas. The study will be turned in at the end of this year.

This project requires that cities with a population over 5,000 within the seven metropolitan areas outside of Portland Metro must adopt regulations allowing walkable mixed-use development in defined areas within urban growth boundaries.

The goals of the this project include planning and designating walkable mixed-use areas, reform parking requirements, prepare for electric vehicles, improve other transportation options and monitor housing production to adjust it over time. By pursuing these points, the goal is to gradually create developments where people can live, work and play at the same time.

This will require the city to make several changes. One change involves redeveloping three areas, the Lockhaven, Chemawa and Cherry centers in the River Rd./Cherry Ave. area. 

The changes include creating a thriving corridor, encourage thoughtful growth and development and provide public transportation and facilities. The thought behind these changes states that cities should move towards a more compact and urbanized from to help prevent city sprawl and traffic.

Risks involved with these redevelopments include a chance for citizen displacement due to the loss of more affordable housing. And a planning commission analysis found that only those in the Cherry “center” could be at risk of possible displacement.

Volunteer Coordinating Committee

Meeting held: Oct. 12, 2023

In attendance: Daisy Hickman, Jane Herb, Larry Johnson, Dawn Reichle Bailon, Corri Falardeau, Leslie Risewick

Councilor Shaney Starr, City Manager Adam Brown, Deputy City Recorder Dawn Wilson

Absent: R.J. Navarro

What happened: No comments were made by the public. Matthew Stalheim was unanimously selected to position #1 in the Budget Committee with the term expiring Aug 2025. David Louden, Clay Rushton, Bob Shackelford were selected to positions 4, 5 and 6 on the Parks Advisory board respectively with all terms expiring Dec. 2026

Due to a lack of received applications, the committee will still continue to recruit for open liaison positions within the Youth Committee. Recruitment has also now begun for open and expiring positions within the Public Art’s Commission and the Traffic Safety/Bikeways/Pedestrian and Community Diversity Engagement Committees.

Traffic Safety/Bikeways/Pedestrian Committee Meeting

Meeting Held: Oct. 19, 2023

In attendance: Brenda Lamb, Hersch Sangster, Jamie Davis, Tammy Saldivar, Michael DeBlasi, David Dempster, Rick Kuehn

Council Liaison Robert Husseman, Staff Liaison Mike Griffin, Police Lt. Trevor Wenning, City Attorney Shannon Johnson

What happened:

Several public comments were made at the meeting regarding lowering threshold of needed signatures for affected resident petitions from 75% to 50% of affected residents. Comments also revolved around making changes for clarity on the Neighborhood Traffic Management Process application, the overall efficacy and transparency of the Neighborhood Traffic Management Plan.

The state of sidewalks in town was mentioned by multiple leaders of the neighborhood associations. Davis responded specifically to questions about sidewalks on Verda Lane, saying that no investigation would be conducted until the Verda Crossing apartment complex has been completed.

A number of updates occurred to the Keizer Traffic Management (KTM) plan including a number of corrections for clarity. And to better define its goal, “to create a safer and more livable community.

Other corrections included asking the city to provide more deliverables on the KTM plans three main programs: education, enforcement and engineering; to put the majority of work of recording traffic speed onto automated speed recorders rather than citizens; extending the speed limit zone around schools; lowering the affected signatures threshold from 75% to 50% as well as asking the city to set aside money for projects and that fees should be established by the council rather than being voted on by citizens.

The next meeting is Nov. 16, 2023.