City Manager gets high marks

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Local News

And a raise…

Since taking over the job in March of this year, Florence City Manager Erin Reynolds has been doing an outstanding job. That’s according to the results of her annual year-end evaluation according to Mayor Joe Henry.

Joe Henry – “Unanimously each councilor ranked her as outstanding. On a scale of one to four she was rated a solid four for all of the accomplishments that she’s made toward our work plan, the recommendation is for a four percent salary increase.”

That means Reynolds will be making just under $111-thousand as of January 1st. Henry said this month’s evaluation matches the “mid-year” assessment in which she also earned high marks.

City clears way for Old Town Micro Brewery

A request to open a micro brewery and tasting room in Old Town Florence will advance after Florence City Councilors approved a change to the zoning code allowing manufacturing and distribution of wholesale food and beverage in the area.

Mayor Joe Henry said it’s a good idea.

Joe Henry – “Seems like most of the businesses down there are in favor of it. I think it’ll be a benefit to the community overall in terms of economic development and creating a few jobs.”

Scott Waiss, who owns the BeachComber, along with a partner, Bert Wells, are proposing to open the brewery and tasting room in the former Masonic Lodge at the corner of First and Maple. Waiss declined to provide additional details on the proposal, but information in the city’s zone change request showed the brewery will take up about 60 percent of the ground floor of the building. Waiss and his partner expect to brew the beer and distribute it in small batches to other retail establishments.

Shore Acres Lights make good holiday trip

The last of more than 325-thousand LED lights were put up by Thanksgiving, turning the botanical gardens at Shore Acres State Park near Coos Bay into a Christmas wonderland.

Each year, the Friends of Shore Acres put up the lights, dozens of Christmas Trees and lighted sculptures. They also decorate the garden house and offer up free hot cider, coffee, cookies, punch and live entertainment.

The annual tour is a fund raiser for the Friends group. It accepts donations only… and does not charge for entry. Shore Acres State Park gets a financial boon as well. They collect a $5 per car day-use fee from folks who don’t have an annual pass.

Long time visitors to the park say it’s a good idea to get there before the sun goes down. If it’s stormy, you can watch the waves before heading to the garden at sun down.

The lights remain up and lit every night through New Year’s Eve.

But make sure you fill up before leaving town

The average price for a gallon of regular gas in Florence went up a nickel this week, but it will still cost a lot less to fill up your tank in town.

The local cash price for regular in Florence: $2.07. According to Triple-A, that’s a quarter a gallon less than the statewide average of $2.32; but seven cents higher than the national average price of two-dollars even.

Marie Dodds with Triple-A says Christmas travelers will enjoy the cheapest gas on average, since 2008. Her group predicts the number of year-end holiday travelers will top 100-million for the first time on record. More than one in three Americans will take a trip of 50-miles or more between now and the end of the year. Dodds also estimates that about 1.2-million Oregonians will travel for year-end holidays.