Friday, June 7, 2013

Friday, June 7, 2013

Community Development
On June 5, Community Development Department Planning and Housing staff attended a meeting on the development of regional housing strategies, arising from the Regional Problem Solving requirement that participating cities develop regional housing strategies within the next five years.  Those attending included representatives from the cities of Ashland and Central Point, the Rogue Valley Council of Governments, the Department of Land Conservation and Development, Oregon Housing, the Fair Housing Council of Oregon, OnTrack, ACCESS, Rogue Retreat, and the Housing Authority of Jackson County.  The meeting began with a presentation by the Oregon Employment Department's Regional Economist, Guy Tauer, providing an update on Jackson County's recession recovery, focusing on revised local population forecasts, labor trends and housing market statistics.  Those attending recognized the need to provide diverse and affordable housing options close to work, school and shopping as an essential element to managing growth, supporting economic development, providing schools and public services and reducing the environmental and social impacts of growth and agreed that the group should work initially to compile data from existing materials from the participant cities to identify problems and barriers to providing housing and then focus in on identifying solutions.  It was also recognized that there needed to be additional outreach to ensure that staff from all participating jurisdictions are in attendance and participating both to provide a clear picture of issues across the region and to insure the ultimate buy-in of participant cities.  The group will continue to meet monthly.  
 
Ashland’s Housing Program provided significant pre-planning assistance for the Project Community Connect Event that took place last Friday at the Medford Armory.   The fifth annual PCC event offered free assistance for homeless families and individuals, including lunch and access to essential services.  The Project Homeless Connect event is a collaborative effort among many local organizations; the City partnered with Rogue Valley Transportation District, ACCESS, United Way of Jackson County, and La Clinica and many others to raise funds and goods and recruit service providers for this one day event. Services included veterinary care, domestic violence services, legal services, haircuts, food supplies, benefits application assistance, ID replacement, clothing, hygiene products, sleeping bags and bicycles.  The event hosted 524 attendees, down from 629 in 2012.  A debrief is scheduled for next Tuesday at Kids Unlimited. 
 
Police Department
The Police Station remodel is complete, save for some punchlist and fine-tuning items.  APD is very appreciative of its new and updated facilities.  In addition, a new patrol officer has started work and the department is now fully staffed.
 
Below is an e-mail from Detective Carrie Hull.
Mr. Kanner,
 
I just had a conversation with   member of the construction crew that has been working on the Police Department for the last many months that I thought you would appreciate.  I was joking with him about how he and his crew probably would not be sorry to see this job over as there have been a lot of logistical issues with building while sharing space with the active functions of a police department.  I expected the response to be agreement and possibly a shared story of some of the unexpected things that happened during the construction. 
 
Instead, he was thoughtful and then told me he has worked on many other construction projects within other police departments and jails.  He shared that everyone at APD has been great to work around and are “really great people.”  He said, “This is the first time I ever wanted to be a cop.”  He also expressed how his views of law enforcement while working at the other sites were not very favorable based on the actions he witnessed and he is appreciative of how our department’s personnel work and treat others. 
 
I thought this was pretty great.  I’m continually impressed by the people I work with and am happy to hear someone from outside the department who observed us for so long thought so as well.
 
Carrie Hull
Detective
Ashland Police Department
1155 E. Main Street
Ashland, Oregon 97520

 
Public Works
I am occasionally asked why we don’t begin water use restrictions sooner in the season, if we know we’re heading into a drought year.  The answer is that there is no place to store the water we’d save.  This table, prepared by Water Treatment Supervisor Greg Hunter, shows that Reeder Reservoir is 100% full and the water coming into the reservoir exceeds the amount going out.  (W.F. is Ashland Creek and E.F. is East Fork.)
 
 
DATE W.F.
MGD
E.F.
MGD
TOTAL
MGD
REEDER
% FULL
PRODUCTION
MGD
GENERATOR
MGD
5/30/2013 8.40 9.70 18.10 100.0 2.66 12.00
5/31/2013 8.40 9.96 18.09 100.0 2.71 12.00
6/1/2013 8.00 9.60 17.60 100.0 3.50 12.00
6/2/2013 8.40 9.96 18.09 100.0 3.65 12.00
6/3/2013 7.75 9.04 16.79 100.0 3.32 12.00
6/4/2013 7.75 9.04 16.79 100.0 3.70 10.00
6/5/2013 7.11 8.40 15.51 100.0 3.66 10.00


Information Technology (Telecommunications Division)
A new fiber loop was installed to serve Lithia Springs Hotel’s rooftop cellular antenna.  Fiber is used to offload and backhaul cellular phone calls through land lines. Hunter Communications holds the contract with the cellular vendor and AFN provides the local loop transit to Hunter.  In addition, Greensprings Broadband Cooperative (GBC) came on line with 10Mb (burstable to 25Mb) internet service. GBC provides wireless service in the Greensprings area.
 
Mike McLain, an outside Hybrid Fiber Coax (“HFC”) plant consultant, performed onsite field training for the AFN technicians. This was a vital refresher course for one long-term employee and comprehensive training for the newer employee. The training will: 1) reduce AFN’s response times in resolving outside plant issues; 2) improve the overall performance of our HFC network.
 
Unusual early summer lightning strikes hit the antenna atop Beacon Hill.  Fortunately, the grounding rods deflected the energy to ground and no electronic equipment was damaged. However, AFN technicians needed to visit the site to refuel and start the generator in order to charge the storage batteries. The batteries were depleted due to prolonged overcast.
 
Construction continues on Peachy Lane. Unexpected rock conditions have slowed the project trenching (for all utilities involved). AFN’s work is projected to be completed by the end of June.


Previous Updates:

Friday, May 31, 2013
Friday, May 24, 2013
Friday, May 17, 2013
Friday, May 10, 2013
Friday, May 3, 2013 

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