June 12, 2015
Please note:  The weekly update will take a brief hiatus due to holiday and travel schedules.  The update will return on July 24.

Questions have been asked recently about the ability of the Bonneville Power Administrationís hydroelectric facilities to meet power demand during drought conditions. Hereís a link to a recent news release from the BPA explaining how the agency is able to maintain power production. (In short: theyíre not dependent on snow melt.) On the subject of the BPA, hereís a link to an interesting article about the BPA Efficiency Exchange conference, which was attended by Adam Hanks and conservation specialists Larry Giardina and Dan Cunningham.  Iím particularly struck by this from the article: ďSince 1980, BPA and Northwest electric utilities have cumulatively saved over 5 average gigawatts of energy in all sectors of the economy. That translates to enough energy to power four cities the size of Seattle for an entire year or about $3.5 billion in reduced electric bills for the people and businesses of the Northwest.Ē

A fun little tidbit: Recently a resident living on C Street (formerly 90 7th Street) was remodeling inside his house and discovered piles of paper in his walls that he assumes were used as insulation. Among the papers was this:

Itís a receipt for $3.25 dated June 20, 1910, for electric charges for E. C. Evenson. There was also a second receipt for a water bill in November of 1912.
Public Works Department
Earlier this week the Street Division began a maintenance project on Oregon Street. The condition of the road had deteriorated to a point that significant repairs are required. Street crews are currently preparing Oregon St. to be slurry sealed as part of our upcoming slurry seal project. Slurry sealing is basically adding an additional wear layer to the surface of the road, extending the life of the road significantly. The slurry seal surface itself is not a structural element though, so applying the material over the top of a deteriorating road provides little to no benefit. In order to make the slurry seal beneficial, roads scheduled to be sealed must be repaired prior to the application. Any surface or sub-surface defect significant enough to cause failure in the slurry seal layer must be repaired. In the case of this project, crews need to remove a large section of asphalt, replace a portion of the base rock below the asphalt and repave the section of removed asphalt. The picture below is the project on Oregon Street. The new asphalt required two passes of our paver to achieve the required thickness, and two parallel passes to achieve the required width.

Additionally, the entire area will be crack sealed prior to laying the slurry seal. Crack sealing is the application of a hot tar type product to any cracks in the asphalt. Water finding its way below the asphalt into the road base layer is one of the most damaging problems on City streets. Crack sealing creates a waterproof seal over any cracks in the asphalt, thus prevents water from reaching the base layer.    
In total, the project on Oregon St. required the removal and installation of 102 tons of asphalt. The bad sections of asphalt were first marked with paint, then the perimeter of the bad area was cut using an asphalt cutting saw. The bad asphalt was then removed, while leaving good asphalt in place. The bad asphalt is hauled away to a temporary storage area. All the asphalt removed will eventually be recycled and used on future projects. Once the bad asphalt was removed, any areas in the base layer that showed signs of failure were also removed. The base layer was repaired using a new layer of base material that is then compacted to prevent future settling. The new asphalt was then installed.

Every street project of this type requires several employees and a fair amount of equipment. This project alone required three dump trucks and three drivers, one paver and a paver operator, two rollers and two operators, and four people on the ground to operate various components of the paver and to rake and shovel asphalt. Itís a real team effort.

Fire Department
The Ashland Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) graduated 16 new trainees on Wednesday, many of whom attended a graduation ceremony with friends and family to receive their certificates of completion. CERT also held a firefighter rehab training this past weekend to prepare CERT volunteers for providing rehab during fires in light of the season ramping up.
The community has been highly engaged in CPR training. AF&R recently scheduled certification courses for USFS, Market of Choice, the Wellsprings, and Ashland School District #5 Transportation Department employees.
AF&R will kick off a new round of training for the Cityís Employee Emergency Response Team, which is made up of representatives from all city departments, next Wednesday. 

Police Department
The bait bike was stolen (yet again) yesterday, or so we thought!  Police set up surveillance and watched the subject take the bike from the area of Pioneer Street and Lithia Way. The male in question walked the bike to Main Street and then headed north toward the Plaza. Instead of throwing the bike into the back of a truck or hooking up with a co-conspirator, he stopped directly in front of the contact station and turned the bike in to APD. He was very concerned, thinking the bike was stolen and wanted to make sure it was returned to its rightful owner. Kudos to him Ė we didnít share it was a bait bike but assured him we knew the owner.   
APDís newest officer, Matt Hannum, graduated field training on Monday and has now been permanently assigned to a patrol team.
The photo below was sent in by a citizen who lives near the top of Beach Street. APD decided it was best to give this perpetrator a warning for stealing the koi fish instead of making a formal arrest.

In between koi thefts and bait bikes returns, a man stole a keg of beer from a beer delivery truck on the Plaza. Officer Bon Stewart arrested the culprit on Quincy Street and, yes, he also recovered the beer keg.

Previous Updates:

June 5, 2015

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