Proposed School Budget; Siuslaw Awards; 4th of July Celebration; Affordable Housing Open House

Proposed School Budget

Final action on a proposed budget for the Siuslaw School District in the coming year is on the agenda this evening for the school board.  The budget committee approved the draft budget last month.  It comes in at just over $32-million.  Superintendent Andy Grzeskowiak says there are few changes from last year.  He cited two of the most prominent, the first being the “phase out” of federal dollars under the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief, a covid era program that is referred to as “ESSER”.

“The base budget is the same.  What we’re seeing is the final closeout of ESSER funds.  We’re also seeing the inclusion of the Stronger Connections Grant.”

That grant is the other notable change.  It will fund expanded after school programs as well as a “district wide” mental health councilor.

“We’ve hired Julie Steyding.  She’s got plenty of years of clinical service and will be moving up to the high school next year.”

The Siuslaw School Board meets at the District Office on Oak Street near the Elementary School. An informal work session is at six with the regular session coming to order at 6:30.

Siuslaw Awards

The Florence Area Chamber of Commerce has announced the upcoming 16th annual Siuslaw Awards.  The event will be on July 25th at the Florence Events Center.  You can nominate your favorite business for the event in several categories.  There are 7 categories listed including the prestigious Stu Johnston Business of the Year award. Information on nominations can be found at the Chamber’s website:  the annual event will also include the First Citizen Award and the Future First Citizen Award.  The Future first citizen is an outstanding student in Florence each year.  This year the award went to Cate Waggoner at Siuslaw High School. Nominations for First Citizen are currently being taken.  Deadline for nominations is June 30th.  for more information or to volunteer for the event you can email or visit the website.

4th of July Celebration

The annual 4th of July celebration is also upcoming.  The chamber has planned a day of music and fun for all with games, contests and a DJ and Live Music.  Local band FM Daze will perform as will DJ Al Rojas up to the setting off of the fireworks.  Events will center around the boardwalk.

Affordable Housing Open House

More affordable housing has come online with the recent completion of Oak Manor Apartments. The management of the facility will be hosting an open house tomorrow at 11 am.  Layne Morrell is the president of Our Coastal Village, the entity responsible for building the units.  He says that the apartments are essentially filled, but that there are plans for more units in the future.

“We are in the very early planning stages of a 38 unit affordable housing development.  It will be on a site currently owned by the city but we are under contract to purchase it from the city.”

The site is a piece of property to the northwest of the Justice center off of 9th street on Greenwood street.  The city recently received a grant to upgrade the water and sewer utilities for the property making it possible for future building.  Morrell says the units are planned for 2026 if all comes together.  Again the open house for Oak Manor apartments is tomorrow at 11am.