February 7, 2014

Friday, February 7, 2014

It was mentioned a couple of times in public meetings this past week that Ashland was ranked #2 on a list of the “Best Places to Live and Work as a Moviemaker in 2014” by MovieMaker Magazine.  Click here to see the article.  That same magazine named the Ashland Independent Film Festival one of the top 25 coolest film festivals in the world.  (Link to the article here.)  Note that the festivals are listed alphabetically, although we all know Ashland is #1.
As noted many times in the weekly update, Ashland is by no means the only city struggling with what to do about the proliferation of short-term vacation rentals sparked by web sites such as VRBO and AirBnB.  Here’s a link to an Oregonian article about the City of Portland’s attempts to deal with the issue.
The ad hoc Committee on Recycling and Waste Reduction held its first meeting yesterday.  The Committee spent some time discussing the need for a survey of recycling center users to determine who is using the recycling center, what they’re recycling there and why they’re not using the curbside recycling program.  There was also some discussion of partnering with SOU to use students to conduct the survey (taking the burden off of Recology staff at the recycling center) or possibly partnering with SOU to make its on-campus recycling center more accessible to the public.  Additional discussion centered on the need to focus on waste reduction and re-use rather than recycling.

Speaking of re-use, the photo below is a Monkey Puzzle tree that was removed by the Parks Department this past fall.  It is being dried and milled for use in replacing the gateway that once stood at the Japanese-style garden.  The department expects to have it done and in place this fall after the wood dries.

Community Development
I received this wonderful e-mail this week from a local business owner:
February 6, 2014

Dear Mr. Kanner:

Re: Kevin Flynn

The purpose of this letter is to compliment Kevin Flynn in the Community Development Department for his prompt and very professional response to concerns that I shared with him regarding the Ashland Sign Ordinance.

There were two different occasions where I found it necessary to contact the City of Ashland regarding violations that affected my business as well as another business on the same block.

 I truly appreciated how carefully he listened to my concerns both times, how quickly he managed to approach the situation, and the fact that he followed-up with me both times.

I don't know how long Mr. Flynn has been employed by the City of Ashland, but in my opinion he is an excellent addition and representative for the City of Ashland.

Needless to say I was impressed.

Very truly yours,

Judi Honore' 
Shakespeare Books & Antiques

This is by no means the first piece of positive feedback I’ve received about Kevin.  We have scheduled his first semi-annual report on code compliance for the March 31st study session.  I think you’ll be impressed with how much he has accomplished in such a short time, particularly in regard to short-term rentals.

Previous Updates

Friday, January 31, 2014

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