Siuslaw Vision Receives Grant; County Hospital Counts Rising; One Florence Case Added; Gas Prices

Siuslaw Vision Receives Grant

Siuslaw Vision has received notification from the IRS that they are now recognized as a tax-exempt non-profit organization.  Siuslaw Vision, a grassroots organization has been working to enhance opportunities in western Lane County over the past five years. Siuslaw Vision Coordinator Stephanie Sarles says that recently they are focused on helping the region recover from the effects of the pandemic. Sarles says they are also working on refreshing their priorities and supporting community members in responding to those priorities.  To help them Siuslaw Vision also learned that they are the recipient of a $249,000 grant from the Ford Foundation to provide core funding over the next 3 years.  Sarles says the grant along with the new status from the IRS means the organization has a solid foundation moving forward.

County Hospital Counts Rising

Lane County Public Health is reporting that there are now 22 individuals that have been admitted to county hospitals with COVID-19.  In a recent interview Jason Davis, LCPH liaison had said that numbers over 15 begin to cause a strain on the county’s health system.  Even though the number does not in itself seem extreme, the need to isolate and care for the individuals provides a unique situation for hospital staff.  There is currently one peron on a ventilator and 5 individuals in the ICU.  There is still some concerned raised about the vulnerability of those with covid as 15 of the 22 patients are in the 60-79 age group.

One Florence Case Added

There has been one more reported case of COVID-19 for the Florence area bringing the total number of cases since the beginning of the pandemic to 232.  Lane County has reported 56 new cases yesterday and the state is reporting 888 new cases along with 2 new deaths.  New cases and hospitalizations continue to surge throughout the state with 326 people in the hospital.  Cases are up 21% from the previous week which marks the 5th consecutive week with a rise of 20% or more and hospitalizations have doubled.  Positive test results are now coming in at an average of 6%.  Tomorrow Lane County joins several other counties for a return to Extreme risk that will last until at least May 6.

Gas Prices

The weather is bringing out individuals that are traveling according to Marie Dodds with AAA Oregon.  Demand is at its second highest rate since March of 2020 making it the highest Spring reading in more than two years.  The increased demand is also having an effect on prices.  The state has seen small jumps in prices, but the Florence area has remained at an average of $3.20 a gallon for regular.  Dodds say supply and demand have both been increasing a likely reason that prices have not jumped more substantially.