Three open houses set for Mapleton Schools to discuss possible levy

Coast Radio News
Local News

Mapleton could get millions of dollars in assistance if voters approve

Three open houses will be held in various locations around the Mapleton School District in the coming weeks to allow residents to learn more about a possible $5-million capital levy.

If the district puts the question to voters… then if voters approve it… it could mean the district would receive as much as $7-million additional in state funding to upgrade the high school and elementary school.

The Mapleton District was notified earlier this month they had been selected as a recipient of a $4-million state grant for capital improvements. But that’s only if district voters approve a levy of at least the same amount in the May election.

In addition to the four million, the district could be eligible for up to $1.5-million for each of the two school buildings to pay for seismic upgrades.

Three open houses are set for residents to learn more about the process… Thursday February 18th at the Mapleton High School; Tuesday the 23rd at the Deadwood Community Center; and the 25th at the Swisshome Church. All three meetings begin at six.

Bridge work over the Siuslaw to cause additional delays

Drivers will be facing delays of up to 20-minutes crossing the Siuslaw River Bridge over the next few days. Beginning tomorrow morning, flaggers will be limiting traffic to just one-way over the bridge as construction crews work to set the first section of new railing.

The span is undergoing two improvement projects at once. The concrete railings are being replaced over the next two years. The first section was removed several weeks ago and a temporary barricade has been in place since then. Beginning Tuesday morning and extending through late Thursday the new rails will be placed.

The other project requires sandblasting and patching the exterior of the concrete bridge in preparation for applying a zinc coating to prevent corrosion.

Florence to hold art and marijuana conversations

The Florence City Council will discuss public art policies and changes to business license codes to accommodate the legal marijuana industry. A special work session at City Hall is slated for 10:00 Wednesday morning.

First up will be members of the Public Art Committee. They will make a presentation on preparing guidelines and policies for a new public arts program.

City Hall staff will also present proposed amendments to the business license provisions in city code to accommodate legal marijuana sales, processing, growing and distribution.

The work session is intended for discussion between councilors and staff only. Any decisions coming from those discussions will be put off to a future meeting.

Property owners advised of tax scam

A scam targeting elderly property owners is getting attention this week. Property owners in Clackamas and Deschutes Counties who are delinquent in their taxes have reported receiving phone calls or letters threatening foreclosure or lawsuits unless they sign their property over to an individual or company in exchange for a minimal payment. According to Lane County Assessor Mike Cowles, the letters and calls are often coercive and contain false or misleading information about the status of that person’s property.

He says in Oregon counties may only foreclose three years after taxes become delinquent; and the property owner is contacted numerous times by mail or personal service.

Cowles says don’t ever let a caller pressure you into taking immediate action; ask for contact information and tell them you’ll call back… then do some research to verify the number. Don’t wire any money to anyone… and don’t make a payment over the phones.

2nd of three tax payments due Tuesday

If you’re splitting your property taxes into three payments this year, you’ll need to know that the second payment is due tomorrow.

Lane County Assessor Mike Cowles said in order to avoid a penalty, you’ll need to make sure of a few things…

If you’re mailing, do it early; especially in rural areas. If you have a rural mail pickup at home, it may not be post-marked on the day it is picked up.

If you’re using a bill-paying service from your bank or credit union it could take a couple extra days to be posted.

He says the two best ways to ensure it’s received on time is by either paying it in person over the counter… but you’ll have to drive to Eugene to do that… or use Lane County’s online payment system. You can use a Visa or Mastercard… or make a payment using an “E-Check”. That’s at www-dot-lanecounty-dot-org.

Cowles says Lane County collects property tax payments on behalf of 83 different taxing districts including cities, schools, water districts, fire districts and more.