Tuesday, July 19, 2022

Legislative Committee with Priorities for 2023 Session

The City's Legislative Subcommittee meets on Friday the 22nd, and the agenda has a number of interesting items. There is no packet or other explanation with the agenda, and there might be more to say later.


Unsurprisingly since they left it out of the bond proposal, the City appears to be asking the Legislature for money to stabilize the bluff face over south River Road.

So much speeding: The Police said "eye-opening"

More interesting is what may be a stronger embrace of photo speed enforcement. The bill referenced in the agenda item, SB 560 from 2019, did not pass. It was an attempt to allow all cities in Oregon to employ photo radar. Apparently existing statute explicitly excludes Salem? That is hard to square with our current installations, however. So that will be interesting to learn about more.

SB 560 from the 2019 session

There are also notes about seeking funding for Peace Plaza, for connectivity across OR-22 at Cordon Road, and strengthening the framework for sweeps of camps along "dangerous roadways or environmentally sensitive areas."

Front page yesterday

Or how about just more housing and slower roadways rather than more sweeps? Yesterday's story was about race, but class and housing status may be more directly relevant here in Salem.

What looks like the possibility of a college wood bat league team is interesting. Springfield just got the Drifters and the Corvallis Knights have been around for a while. But do we really need another stadium to compete with Volcanoes stadium? Big sports facilities buzz during game time, but they are slack and vacant in the off-hours, and represent an inefficient use of land, especially in a housing crisis. They also have large parking lots, induce extra car travel, and raise ambient temperatures with all the pavement. So that's something to watch. (Maybe John Lewis Field at Bush Park, Willamette's facility, could be shared, but that seems unlikely.)

Additionally, as a footnote, but perhaps a prelude to a larger post about the new City website, the Legislative Committee is too hidden. A search for words yields over 400 hits, but not very relevant. Sorting by date yields documents not related to the committee.

Old results and lots of chaff

You'll notice that first result contains the phrase "legislative committee." But searching for the phrase itself returns an empty result!

The exact phrase yields a null

The new website kinda looks good in some ways, and may be better suited for mobile devices and casual searches, but it is not so helpful in looking for information on actual city government. Maybe there will be more to say on this later.


Jim Scheppke said...

Use of Willamette U's baseball stadium adjacent to Bush's Pasture Park is the plan for the new baseball team. The organizers came to the South Central Association of Neighbors meeting last week to make a presentation. Two representatives from Willamette U. were there to endorse the plan. The whole idea is to have a central location that folks can walk and bike to. For folks that have to drive, parking lots at Willamette (empty in the summer) would be available. SCAN enthusiastically endorsed the plan! They hope to begin play in 2024. Some of us commented that the Salem Savage Owls would be a good name for the team! We think it would be wonderful to have this happen in our neighborhood.

Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

Ah-ha! The agenda item for SCAN was only "Luke Emanuel, Youth Baseball," and that seems like a bit of an understatement now.

That is great to hear of SCAN's support, and great to hear that WU is optimistic about some kind of cooperative shared use for the ballpark. Maybe even there will be some impovements to the specatator amenities.

It will be interesting to learn more about the proposal, whether it is indeed for the West Coast League, and what facilities upgrades might be contemplated and funded.

(If it is a West Coast League team, the Nanaimo NightOwls might not support a second owls team name, unfortunately. A name pointing to the park's Barred owls would be apt and amusing, as you suggest!)