Special Election Results
Yesterday’s special election in Lane County confirmed many board seats that were unopposed, Bill McDougal was defeated in his reelection bid for the Siuslaw School board. Diana Pimlott will now serve on that seat and in a race for Port of Siuslaw Commissioner, Frank Eisele was unable to unseat Craig Brandt. In one of the biggest issues for the special election, a measure to support a bond to build a new courthouse for Lane County, voters turned down the measure. No Votes were 43503 to 31141 in support. The Bond would have increased Lane County property owners taxes if the 154 million dollars had been approved. This means county commissioners will have to go back to the drawing board to find a way to produce the funds. Commissioner Jay Bozevich says about 94 million dollars in state funds were available to help pay for the cost of the new court house, with an additional 4 million in federal funds. Had the levy passed the average property owner would have seen an increase in taxes to the tune of about $48 dollars annually.
Peace Harbor Receives Seismic Grant
Peace Harbor Hospital in Florence will receive a grant for 2.5 million dollars to perform seismic upgrades on its campus. The grant was awarded through Business Oregon which is the state of Oregon’s economic development agency. Work is scheduled to begin in July of this year with a completion date of July 2021. Chief Administrative Officer Jason Hawkins says work will be done in such a way to minimize any disruptions to daily care at the facility. Hawkins says any short term inconveniences will be well worth it. Keeping in mind the safety of patients, visitors, and caregivers should the area be hit with a devastating earthquake.
Gas Prices Dip Slightly
Gas prices for the week are falling slightly in Oregon. AAA Oregon reports that prices are flat, but have decreased about a penny a gallon for the state. Marie Dodds with AAA says that prices could inch lower through Memorial Day Weekend with about 43 million Americans expected to his the roadways including over a half million Oregonians. Gas prices in Florence are averaging around $3.25 a gallon for regular.
Florence Man Receives Critical Injuries
A fatal crash over the weekend left a Florence man in critical condition. The crash occurred in Veneta on Saturday. Eugene resident, 39 year old Thomas Hill, failed to observe traffic and rear ended the Dodge pickup operated by 29 year old Christopher Stuart of Florence, sending the vehicle into the westbound lane of 126 causing it to crash into a Ford Focus driven by 37 year old Jennifer Stephenson. Stephenson suffered fatal injuries from the crash.