Category: news2

Waste dumping fees raised to save agency

Last month, after 24 years, the Marion County Board of Commissioners approved of increases in several types of waste disposed in Marion County. Tipping fees are charged to “tip” waste into a dump. The Salem-Keizer Recycling & Transfer Station east of town and the North Marion Transfer Station near Woodburn, will see a $20 increase in the per ton tip fee for franchised garbage haulers. This will mean an increase for the garbage haulers from $67.45 per ton to $87.45 per ton, and at transfer stations from $87.45 per ton to $107.45 per ton. Licensed contractor waste will go up from $75.45/ton to $95.45/ton. At the Browns Island Demolition Landfill, rates for non-friable asbestos will raise from $30 to $75/yard and demolition materials will raise from $10.50 to $13.00/yard. All increases will be effective October 1, 2016. The reason for the hike is that funding for Marion County’s Environmental Services Department had dropped in recent years. Environmental Services, a widely valued county service, manages landfills, promotes recycling and education and provides EarthWISE certification for local businesses. The department’s revenues have been generated for years from tipping fees and from income created at a fourth facility, the Covanta energy-from-waste facility near Brooks. At Covanta, waste is burned to create electricity, and metal is recovered to be sold. But neither electricity nor the facility’s metal is as valuable as it used...

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Hey Marion County, You mailed it too late!

Once again on Election Day, May 17, 2016, Marion County election officials received ballots too late to be counted. If you mailed yours less than a week ahead of time, yours might have been among them. According to Marion County Clerk, Bill Burgess, during the November 2014 gubernatorial election, 715 Marion County ballots were mailed too late and were never counted. Longer mailing times in 2016 result from two changes in US Postal Service policy, Burgess says. First, Salem mail began being routed through Portland the summer of 2012, meaning that a resident who mails a ballot to the...

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Salem safe from inundation!

by Helen Caswell Salem residents concerned about the coming Cascadia subduction earthquake can cross one potential catastrophe off their lists, says the US Army Corps of Engineers. And that is t he disaster of the Detroit Dam falling to pieces and its water engulfing the city. It’s a topic local people wonder about. “I’ve been asked repeatedly about Detroit Dam failure in a Cascadia [earthquake] since I began this job,” says Ed Flick, Marion County Emergency Manager. “The consequences would be catastrophic, but the likelihood is extremely remote.” Completed in 1953, the Detroit Dam is only 45 miles east of Salem and was built before Oregonians knew the risk of earthquakes in the Pacific Northwest . It wasn’t until the 1970s that people began to understand the state had numerous faults both off shore and onshore. In particular, geologists learned the region is subject to massive Cascadia Subduction Zone quakes which occur about once every 300 years. It’s now been 316 years since the last Cascadia , but Matt Craig, Dam Safety Program Manager for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, says that though the Detroit Dam was not constructed with seismic concerns in mind, the corps does not anticipate a failure. “We do risk assessments on an ongoing basis,” he says, “in particular of what might happen in a 9.0.” A magnitude-9.0 earthquake is the most intense possible...

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How we move forward

by Laura Gildart Sauter I’ve been a fan of the Salem Progressive Film Series for some time.  The monthly films are always thought-provoking and informative, and discuss issues that should be important to any concerned citizen.  However, this month’s award-winning offering, Bikes vs. Cars (90min), directed by Fredrik Gertten, produced by Margarete Jangard and Elin Kamlert, is particularly relevant to the City of Salem and many of its current issues: the disagreement over the construction of a third bridge, the controversy over downtown parking, the need for expanded bus service, and the movement to reverse the one-way street grid. ...

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May 1 march in Salem

Photos and story by Jason Cox Hundreds of progressive Oregonians marched on the Oregon State Capitol on Sunday, May 1, with a timely theme of “Today We March, Tomorrow We Vote!” Numerous allied groups found common cause in speaking up for workers’ rights, keeping families together and speaking up against hate. Causa Oregon and the Oregon School Employees Association organized the...

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