Council also approved amendments to RV parking ordinance, looks to update community center plan

Woodburn residents will see a rate change to its trash disposal service starting Nov. 1 after a 10.2 percent increase was approved by the City Council last week.

Republic Services proposed rate changes of a 10.2 percent hike for residential customers, 15.6 percent for commercial and 11.2 percent for industrial.

“The requested hike ... is in response to Marion County’s 30 percent increase for garbage disposal services,” Matt Cofer, operations manager for Republic Services, said.

Back in April, the Marion County Board of Commissioners approved a proposal to raise usage fees by 22.8 percent in solid waste disposal fees for garbage haulers at county transfer stations and the Covanta Energy from Waste Facility in Brooks.

The new rates will be $22.92 for a 20-gallon cart, $26.12 for a 35-gallon cart, $37.03 for a 65-gallon cart and $38 for a 90-gallon cart.

To help mitigate the cost, Republic Services is offering residents an organic yard waste cart at no extra cost. It would be used to throw away all yard debris, food products and food recyclables like pizza boxes.

“Studies have shown that individuals can divert 10 to 30 percent of municipal solid waste by switching to the organic carts, which would allow people to downsize their garbage container and save a few dollars each month,” Cofer said. “It really makes a lot of sense.”

Anyone with questions or suggestions on how to lower their garbage bill, call 503-981-1278.

Council makes decision on RV parking

City Council also approved a traffic ordinance that limits RV parking on public streets to 48 hours, among other restrictions.

Following complaints of RVs parked on the street creating safety hazards and not moving for days at a time, the City Council looked into and ultimately unanimously approved Council Bill No. 3015.

The new ordinance states that no person shall store an RV on public streets or other public property for more than 48 hours as long as it is parked for the purpose of loading, unloading or otherwise being prepared for use. It also must be owned by the resident or guest of the resident of the property and not be used for human occupancy while parked on the street. The RV also must not interfere with traffic or obstruct the view of drivers.

Also in the new ordinance is language regarding fire lane parking. It states that vehicles are prohibited from parking in designated fire lanes, including those established and marked on private streets. Police now have the authority to enforce parking lane violations on both public and private streets.

City Council initially discussed the issue at its Aug. 8 meeting, reaching consensus at its Sept. 12 meeting on a draft ordinance revision that would reduce the current limit of on-street parking from 72 hours to 48 hours.

Motor homes, travel trailers, campers, boats and buses are considered recreational vehicles under the ordinance.

On Sept. 12, councilors and staff emphasized that the purpose of the ordinance is to encourage RV owners to either store vehicles off the street, on either private property or at a commercial storage facility.

“My personal opinion is if you can afford this rig, you can afford to store it off site if you can’t fit it on your own property,” Mayor Kathy Figley said. “I think the complaints that we’ve heard have had to do primarily with safety issues and to some extent aesthetics. It’s one thing to have a pickup with a canopy, and it’s something else to have a Motor Coach or equivalent parked in front of someone’s house for days at a time, especially if it’s your house and it’s not your RV.”

Local citizen honored at City Council meeting

COURTESY PHOTO: CITY OF WOODBURN - Ewart Brown (center) and his wife, Linda, were honored at the Sept. 25 Woodburn City Council meeting. He is congratulated by Police Chief Jim Ferraris (left), Mayor Kathy Figley (holding the plaque) and City Administrator  Scott Derickson (right).

Longtime Woodburn resident Ewart Brown was honored at last Monday’s City Council meeting for his efforts in coordinating the inaugural Woodburn Community Connection Day.

The event in the Safeway parking lot on Aug. 27 was staffed by Safeway, Woodburn Police Department, Woodburn Fire District, Woodburn Ambulance Company, the Woodburn Boys & Girls Club, Woodburn Youth Advisory Board and the Woodburn Kiwanis Club, and it focused on bringing children and families in the community together.

Chief Jim Ferraris said Brown is “the perfect example of community policing.”

City to explore updating the community center plan

Work on updating the plan for a community center, a joint project of the city and the Woodburn Downtown Association, is beginning after receiving public feedback at a July 27 meeting.

The updated planning effort will focus on the concept of expanding the city’s existing aquatic center to include both active and passive recreation spaces, potentially including a gymnasium, fitness facilities, classrooms and areas for senior and youth programs.

The planning process will include plenty of opportunities for input from the public, the city spokesman said, as well as potential partners in the project, including the WDA, Woodburn Senior Center and the Boys & Girls Club.

“More and more, I have been hearing from various groups and residents asking for a quality community center,” Mayor Kathy Figley said in a press release. “If done right, a community center could really improve the quality of life for so many of our residents. Updating the community center concept, along with associated cost, is not only responsive to the community’s interest, but the first step in moving this discussion forward.”

The 2008 plan is available to view.

CARTS looks at adding trips to Woodburn

Chemeketa Area Regional Transportation Services (CARTS), based in Salem, is looking at adding two more daily round trips from Salem to Woodburn, making six trips in total.

The potential changes are part of Cherriots’ evaluation of how CARTS regional routes can be improved.

Getting addition routes to Woodburn would be popular, Transit Manager Kathy McClaskey said.

“It would be good because right now service ends at 4 p.m. and this would add later routes to our area,” she said in a press release. “That would be important for people who might go to school or work in Salem and use this service for commuting.”

Lindsay Keefer can be reached at 503-765-1193 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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