Local News – Henry wins write-in as does McAlpin. Gas prices fall, Oregon revenues rise.

Coast Radio News
Local News

November 21, 2012

Write In Tallies Completed

The count is finally completed; although it’s not yet official.  That won’t happen until at least next week.  Joe Henry picked up the most write-in votes for the one open Florence City Council seat.  According to Lane County Clerk Cheryl Betschart, Henry had 186 hand-written votes.  Clarence Lysdale was second with 143 votes and, adds Betschart, she has 4 ½ pages of names that she will forward to Florence City Recorder Kelli Weese next week.  By statute she has until November 26 to certify the election.  For his part, the independent mortgage broker was pleased and says he’s eagerly awaiting his first meeting.

Joe Henry “Yeah, I’m ready to go.  I’ve been going to a few city council meetings and kind of getting up to speed on what’s going on.”

Henry will join existing councilors Sue Roberts and Brian Jagoe, each in the middle of four-year terms.  Also new to the council will be Joshua Greene who was alone on the ballot earlier this month.  The council will be presided over by Mayor-Elect Nola Xavier

Circuit Court Judge Jay McAlpin will hang on to the position to which he was appointed earlier this year.  When a misunderstanding caused him to fail to file for election, it left nobody on the ballot for position seven.  That prompted a hastily prepared write-in campaign for McAlpin and four others.  Out of the 39,284 write-in votes cast, McAlpin won 21,152 or about 54-percent.  His nearest competition was former Eugene Municipal Judge Alan Lieman who had just over 9-thousand votes or about 23-percent.

Revenues rise, while gas prices fall

Oregon’s tax revenues appear to be coming in a little higher than expected.  The state economist released the quarterly revenue forecast this week and it shows the state will earn an additional $55-million in the two-year budget cycle that runs through July 1st of next year.  That will avert the need for major budget cuts, but the report also shows the next two-year budget cycle will bring in about $16.5-billion in anticipated revenue.  That’s about $700-million short of the cost of maintaining government services at their existing levels.

Gas prices around Oregon and across the country continue to decline.  In Florence the average price for a gallon of regular unleaded fell by four cents this week to $3.51.  That’s down from a recent high of $3.98 in early September.  It’s also a penny below the statewide average and ten cents above the national average price as measured by Triple-A.  In the Portland area the average price is at $3.48; Salem is at $3.50 and Eugene has the highest average of communities surveyed at $3.53 a gallon.