Coast Radio Daily News

Burn Ban Continues; Solar Could Lose Ground; HEOP To Outline Progress

Dry Season Causes Burn Ban Continuance

It has been a fairly dry summer season as Coastal Oregon goes.  And dozens of wildfires throughout the state have stressed firefighting resources.  The Oregon Department of Forestry decided last week to extend the Summer burning ban until this Saturday, October 7th.  Sean Barrett with Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue said the decision came after ODF took a look at moisture levels.

“The Oregon Department of Forestry was the ones that extended it just because there wasn’t quite enough rain.”

This was before the rain that we received over the weekend, but Barrett says there will be no further extension and that the ban will definitely be over on Saturday.  Once the ban is lifted though it is important to remember that there is no backyard burning allowed anywhere in the city of Florence and you are required to obtain a permit, which are free of charge, from the Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue for any burning on coastal lane county properties.  Coast Radio news will have updates and information from the fire department as they are made available.

Tariffs Could Shorten Solar Boom

Oregon advocates for solar energy say the future won’t be as bright if the Trump administration imposes tariffs on imported solar panels. Last month, the U-S International Trade Commission ruled that cheap, foreign-made solar panels are hurting domestic manufacturers, and will consider solutions at a hearing scheduled this week. Its options include a price floor and tariffs. David Brown is co-founder of Obsidian Renewables, an Oregon-based company that develops solar projects in the Northwest. He doesn’t mince words about what tariffs would mean for solar jobs in Oregon.

“It will cost lots of jobs – not forever, because it’s so stupid it’ll get repealed. But for as long as it’s in effect, it’ll be a disaster.”

Solar jobs increased by 50-percent in Oregon from 2015 to 2016, according to the Solar Foundation, and nationwide, the industry employs more than 260-thousand people. But the Solar Energy Industries Association warns that imposing tariffs could cost the sector 88-thousand jobs.

Meeting to Outline Housing Progress

A meeting of the HEOP committee will be coming up on October 10th.  The Housing and Economic Opportunities Project will gather for the public at the Florence event center next Tuesday to discuss the plan for creating jobs and affordable housing for Florence.  City Manager Erin Reynolds says public comment and participation is encouraged.

“If you’re interested in housing and have some thoughts on how the city council and city staff should move forward on housing initiatives then come on down to the Florence event center next week.

The meeting will be from 5 to 7 pm at the Florence Event Center.  Reynolds says the committee will have updated information to share from the city’s consultant