There is a COVID-19 testing facility set up today at the Florence Events Center. Assistant City Manager Megan Messmer on Monday said people are still showing up for testing even as Florence has had no reported cases in 10 days. Today’s testing event will be from 10 until noon. There will be a drive up testing area in the south parking lot, but Messmer says there will also be indoor testing available today as well. Overall COVID-19 numbers have continued to drop according to the Oregon Health Authority. In addition to the falling number of cases the OHA will be ending its emergency declaration for the state as on Friday April 1st. However, the federal declaration will extend beyond April 1. The Biden administration has said it will give at least an 80 day notice before lifting the federal declaration.
Input Wanted for Lane County Strategic Plan
A series of four “virtual” input sessions have been scheduled over the next 3 days to allow community members an opportunity to comment on the next 3-year strategic plan for Lane County. The current plan was last updated in 2019 and focused the work of Lane County on safety and health, infrastructure, partnerships and building “vibrant Communities. All sessions are scheduled to last one hour and will be held on “zoom”. This evening’s begins at 5:30. Two more are set for tomorrow, one at lunchtime, the other mid afternoon and then the final one is Friday at 9 AM. A link to the draft plan and the zoom meeting is at LaneCounty.gov.
Earth Day – Florence Habitat
Florence Habitat for Humanity is once again observing Earth Day with an art project. It’s called the habitat Earth Day up-cycle contest. The plan, says Habitat Director Janell Morgan, is to make art by “up-cycling” discarded or unused items to create a three-dimensional piece of art. Your sculpture can be submitted any time up to April 23rd at Re-Store in the Grocery Outlet Center. But, Morgan adds, voting will begin April 16th so the earlier you enter the better possibility that you might finish in the top three and be eligible for a prize. There is no fee to enter and Morgan says the idea is to show the community that “beautiful things can come from items that are thrown away each day.”
Crude Oil/Gas Prices
The Price of Crude Oil is still hovering about 100 a barrel causing gas prices to be on an upward trajectory at least in Oregon according to Marie Dodds with AAA Oregon. Prices edged up a cent and a half this past week while the national average held steady at $4.24. Oregon is averaging $4.72 a gallon. Florence prices are averaging $4.65 a gallon for regular.
The OHA reported 351 cases of COVID-19 yesterday statewide and listed another 42 deaths associated with the virus. The number of hospitalizations is also dropping and nearing 100 with 111 individuals still in Oregon hospitals. Of those 111 there are 18 still in intensive care. Lane county reported 35 cases yesterday.