City Looking to Finalize Camping Codes; Letter Carrier Food Drive; Rhody Events For Kids; Gas Prices

City Looking to Finalize Camping Codes

Even though only two people provided verbal input at Monday’s special Florence City Council meeting about the draft ordinance regulating homeless camping.  Mayor Rob Ward was pleased with the response.  He said there were seven written comments submitted.

“Well, a lot of it was people being supportive of what we were trying to do.”

Monday’s meeting was the sixth time the council met in their efforts to address the matter.

“As we look at the homeless issue as it affects Florence, we want to be able to show compassion to people that are experiencing homelessness.  But as a city, we also need to show compassion to those people that are affected by the people that are homeless.” 

The City Council will continue discussing how to address the matter. Through work sessions with a hope of finalizing the new codes soon.  With additional public information sessions to ensure the public has an  understanding.

Letter Carrier Food Drive

 Letter carriers in the 97439 zip code will participate in one of America’s “biggest days of giving” says Colin Morgan.  He’s the executive director of  Florence Food Share, the community’s emergency food pantry.  Each year on the second Saturday in May, letter carriers collect non-perishable food donations from the customers on the delivery routes.  Morgan says since 2005 nearly 130-thousand pounds of food have been gathered by mail carriers during this drive.  He said the timing of this food drive is “critical” with pantry shelves thinning out in springtime.  Participating in the Letter Carrier Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive is easy he says.  Just leave non-perishable food items in a bag next to your mailbox on Saturday, May 11th and your carrier will take care of the rest.  Florence Food Share provides food to more than 500 area households each month.

Rhody Events For Kids

There are many different events happening in the community during the 117th Rhododendron Festival.  Two of them, set for Saturday May 18th are directed at kids.  The firefighters with Western Lane Fire and EMS will once again sponsor the annual Junior Parade.  It will stage in the parking lot of Miller Park beginning at 11 AM before heading north on Oak Street at noon.  The route goes past the schools and ends in the Siuslaw High School Parking Lot.  That will take them directly to the annual Kiwanis Rhody Festival Kids Games held on the JV Baseball Field.

Gas Prices

The Price of Gas is still on the rise with another 7 cents added to the cost of a gallon in Oregon.  Marie Dodds with AAA Oregon says the volatility in the Middle East is still the driving factor in the increase.  The Switchover to summer blends she says for the most part has been completed and that should cause smaller fluctuations in the coming weeks, with Memorial Day weekend being the exception and another bump could come with increased demand. Right now in Florence the price of a gallon or regular is averaging $4.99 a gallon.