Local News – Justice Court Spared; Robinson to run again; Volunteers feted

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Florence Justice Court Spared…

Lane County Commissioners were faced with a dilemma… public safety cutbacks have meant revenue shortfalls for area courts according to West Lane Commissioner Jay Bozievich.

Jay Bozievich – “We have not been generating enough income from citations to support the Justice Court System.  Instead of being a net income it’s become a net expense.”

Commissioners looked at several different options this week, one of which was a complete elimination of the Lane County Justice Court System.  But, an alternative will keep one court open and give west Lane residents access.

Jay Bozievich – “The board kind of gave the administrator the head nod, basically keeping the Florence court open as the only Justice Court in Lane County.”

Functions currently handled by the Central Lane Court will shift to Lane County Circuit Court.

Jay Bozievich – “Fortunately and unfortunately, because of the cuts we’re making to the sheriff’s department and the DA’s department, the Circuit Court system will not be as busy and will be able to pick up this workload.”

County Administrator Liane (LEE-ann) Richardson is working on a resolution for the board’s approval that would consolidate all Justice Court activities into one district with Judge Cindy Cable of Florence the sole Justice of the Peace.

Another fix proposed for timber payments

The U.S. House Natural Resources Committee is working on a proposal today that would reportedly replace federal timber payments for counties.  Washington Republican Doc Hastings says the bill would provide a long-term solution that would generate a steady source of revenue for timber dependent counties by managing more forestland for production.

Robinson Runs Again

Republican Art Robinson says he’s running once again for the 4th District congressional seat held by U.S. Rep. Peter DeFazio.  No other Republican has filed for the May 15 primary.  As he kicked off his second run, Robinson made it clear Tuesday he’s looking toward November and a rematch with Democrat DeFazio.  Robinson, of Cave Junction, says government is too big.  As he proposed in 2010, Robinson says the federal departments of education and energy should be shut down.  He also says he’d like to see increased timber production to revitalize the economies of Douglas County and other timber counties.

Florence Volunteers Feted

Volunteers who serve with the City of Florence will get a little recognition this evening.  City Recorder Kelli Weese says the extra help provided by area residents makes a huge difference.

Kelli Weese – “The volunteers get to make the city the great place that it is.  You know, we would not have an events center, we would not have our airport functioning without our volunteers,  So, they’re the people who get out there and make the fun things happen.”

Police auxiliary, parks, boards and commissions, even the Florence City Council… they’re all people who donate their time and energy.  Weese says Mayor Phil Brubaker, himself a volunteer, will single one out for special recognition.

Kelli Weese – “The volunteer of the year, which is something we’re hoping to do annually from now on.  And it’s just a chance to show one particular person who’s just an amazing job that they’re really appreciated.”

Weese says well over one-hundred volunteers will be celebrated this evening at the Florence Events Center.