Boats on the Siuslaw

Public Safety Telecommunicators Week; Revision Florence to Host Preview; Fuel continues Upward Movement; Is Social Housing Viable?

Public Safety Telecommunicators Week

By proclamation Governor Brown has named this week Public Safety Telecommunicators Week.  In Oregon 9-1-1 operators field nearly 2 million calls a year and are the lifeline in many emergencies across the state.  Florence Police Chief, Tom Turner, recognizes the important responsibility of our local workers.

“Just a fantastic recognition of a large group of very very deserving people and absolutely and certainly focusing on our telecommunicators in Florence and all that they do for us because they are our absolute lifeline and they do a fantastic job and we think about them every day.”

Nationally and around the state of Oregon the week of April 8th through the 14th has been designated as a week to give special recognition to those who man the lines 24 hours a day 365 days a year and make it possible for emergency responders to protect and save lives.

“We are recognizing all of our telecommunicators every day this week to try and make sure that we are so grateful for their services.”

Coast Radio joins many who appreciate the often thankless job of 9-1-1 telecommunicators.

Revision Florence to Host Preview

Revision Florence has announced that there will be an event to unveil the final design for the streetscape project along highway 101.   Community members and business owners are invited to attend.  The Florence Urban Renewal Agency and the City of Florence will host the gathering at the Florence Event Center on Wednesday April 25th from 6 to 8 pm.  City staff and the design team will discuss project timeline and details of the project as well as be available to answer any questions.

Fuel continues Upward Movement

Fuel Prices continue their rise for yet another week.  The average price for a gallon of regular gas in Florence is $2.91 a gallon and statewide the price has topped $3.10 a gallon.  According to AAA Oregon’s Marie Dodds the price increase for Oregon has been minimal this past week and the climb in prices, while still on an upward swing, should begin to taper off in the coming weeks.  The largest contributing factor, according to AAA, is still the routine maintenance of refineries and the switch to summer blend fuels, but adds that consumption is still at record highs.

Is Social Housing Viable?

As Florence moves closer to help solve some of the housing issues by updating its codes to allow for accessory dwelling units, there is a national movement to create social housing.  Peter Gowan with the People’s Policy Project says the U.S. could learn a lot from other countries.

“Where the U.S.’s housing policy has fallen down compared to the more sustainable models in countries like Finland and cities like Vienna is that the costs aren’t covered, which means the cities have a really strong incentive to never build social housing.”

 Gowan says the biggest hurdle to making this a reality is political buy in.

“We’re saying that this proposal can only ever be operationalized with political will. And that’s completely true. So what we need is politicians who have a vision and who can say that we’re going to do the right thing, even if it is politically difficult right now.”

 Gowan says the look for big cities will be different from rural communities like Florence and that each community would have to have a tailor made plan in place.  A move like Gowan is suggesting would require a different attitude toward affordable housing and require the burden to be shifted to those who have the resources.