Eugene Library Measure Key Demographics

The Eugene library measure’s key demographics can be seen here.

Eugene Library Measure Expected Yes Pct. Trend

Polling on the measure’s expected “yes” percentage can be seen here.

Merry Christmas, Happy New Year…beware the scammers. by Pat Farr

This guy is not really Santa out for him and other scammers

This guy is not really Santa Clause…watch out for him and other scammers

Top 5 Holiday Scams to be aware of…

Black Friday/Cyber Monday Specials
This time of year, online scams use a variety of lures to get unsuspecting buyers to click on links or open attachments. Bad guys build complete copies of well-known sites, send emails promoting great deals, sell products and take credit card information – but never deliver the goods. Sites that seem to have incredible discounts should be a red flag. Remember that when a “special offer” is too good to be true, it usually is. For instance, never click on links in emails or popups with very deep discount offers for watches, phones or tablets. Go to the website yourself through your browser and check if that offer is legit.

Complimentary Vouchers or Gift Cards
A popular holiday scam is big discounts on gift cards. Don’t fall for offers from retailers or social media posts that offer phony vouchers or (Starbucks) gift cards paired with special promotions or contests. Some posts or emails even appear to be shared by a friend (who may have been hacked). Develop a healthy dose of skepticism and “Think Before You Click” on offers or attachments with any gift cards or vouchers!

Bogus Shipping Notices From UPS and FedEx
You are going to see emails supposedly from UPS and FedEx in your inbox that claim your package has a problem and/or could not be delivered. Many of these are phishing attacks that try to make you click on a link or open an attachment. However, what happens when you do that is that your computer gets infected with a virus or even ransomware which holds all your files hostage until you pay 500 dollars in ransom.

Holiday Refund Scams
These emails seem to come from retail chains or e-commerce companies such as Amazon or eBay claiming there’s a “wrong transaction” and prompt you to click the refund link. However, when you do that and are asked to fill out a form, the personal information you give out will be sold to cyber criminals who use it against you. Oh, and never, never, never pay online with a debit card, only use credit cards. Why? if the debit card gets compromised, the bad guys can empty your bank account quickly.

Phishing on the Dark Side
A new phishing email has begun circulating that tricks people into thinking they could win movie tickets for the highly-anticipated film, “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” due out on Dec. 18. However, the email is a phishing attack. Leading up to the film’s release, and shortly after, you need to watch out for this social engineering attack and not fall for the scam. Stay safe online!

BONUS TIP: Never use an insecure public Wi-Fi to shop with your credit card!

Happy holidays to you and your family!

(Thanks to the Lane County Government Security Advisor for this message) Read the rest of this entry »

Providing more affordable housing will boost local economy, save lives (not necessarily in that order). by Pat Farr

Portland Business Alliance, Portland’s Chamber of Commerce, is a strong group of mainly Portland-area members.

This program at PBA drew what may be the largest audience the group has attracted

This program at PBA drew what may be the largest audience the group has attracted

PBA is the Portland’s Chamber of Commerce (see link here) and its mission is clearly stated:

Advocating for commerce, building community and supporting regional prosperity.

When adding affordable housing to the most difficult people to house was the topic of their monthly breakfast at the Sentinel Hotel in downtown Portland they had to move from their normal meeting room into the grand ballroom of the hotel. Because (by my count) more than 800 men and women, before going to work that morning, wanted to hear more.

I joined Matt Roberts at the University of Oregon’s table along with Lane County Housing and Community Services Agency (HACSA) director Jacob Fox, Dave Hauser of Eugene Area Chamber of Commerce and Jim Jacks of Oregon Solutions to hear Lloyd Pendelton tell how Utah started and operated its “Housing First” program.

Utah’s program began by placing homeless people who were frequent users of hospital emergency rooms and the public safety system into stable housing. This included men and women who were suffering from alcohol and other drug addictions. And the results were immediate and significant.

The people who were suddenly housed suddenly quit causing police calls. Then, by being in a stable living environment they began healing. Kicking their addictions that often landed them in jail or the ER.

Just as suddenly the businesses located in the areas where the homeless men and women had been crashing experienced more business.

Men and women’s lives were being saved. Businesses were growing and thriving. People were feeling safer, both the ones who were newly housed and the families who wanted to go down town. Everybody was winning. (see more on Utah’s Housing First program here)

Later in the day I visited Bud Clark Commons, which is the location of a housing first model in Portland and also serves as an emergency shelter and day use center for homeless people.

Portland's Bud Clark Commons provides day use, emergency shelter and a housing first model

Portland’s Bud Clark Commons provides day use, emergency shelter and a housing first model

Utah’s model has elements that may not be replicable in Lane County, as does Bud Clark Commons. But some of the elements of both can serve Lane County as ways to save lives, make our community safer and boost the local economy.

Lane County, working with State Government and its cities including Eugene, Springfield, Cottage Grove etc. can employ a pilot project, possibly with as few as 12-20 living units, to demonstrate the effectiveness of providing housing to the men and women who have historically been the most difficult to help. Men and women whose lives can be saved.

Eugene Library Measure Trend

The Eugene library measure (20-235) trend can be seen here.

Lane County Large Events Task Force delivers a product that will work for years. by Pat Farr

When I stood on Jim Evonuk’s farm on a warm Friday evening in a place where you would normally hear the frogs croaking and the water of the Willamette River rippling I knew that this was not the way this county should be governed. Jim stood within a foot of where I was standing, his mouth an inch from my ear, yelling–and I couldn’t understand a word he was saying. I went back to my car, nearby, and Debi Farr from inside the Jeep said, “Let’s get out of here…” I concurred, realizing that Mr. Evonuk had to stay behind.

don't worry little brother (2)

Mt. Pisgah and its associated park and preservation land are a regional gem...

Mt. Pisgah and its associated park and preservation land are a regional gem…

Kayaking on Fern Ridge Lake in the shadow of three Lane County Parks

Kayaking on Fern Ridge Lake in the shadow of three Lane County Parks

Mr. Evonuk’s family farm is a few hundred feet away from the main sound stage that was set up in Buford Park for the “Kaleidoscope Music Festival” (see video here) on the opposite bank of the Willamette River. His family’s peace and quiet was destroyed completely over a three-day weekend during which mind-numbing techno music blared night and day.

The Large Events Task Force was formed within two weeks. When Steve Mokrohisky announced the makeup of the task force I was concerned that the membership, which had five of 14 members who were close neighbors of Buford Park, would be addressing a single park and responding to a single issue. But I was soon satisfied that the group would address issues surrounding all 70 Lane County Parks which encompass 4300 acres of a county the size of Connecticut and stretches from the Pacific Ocean surf to the top of the high peaks of the Cascade Mountains.

At the Lane County Commissioners meeting on November 10, 2015, Mary Moore, a member of the task force who lives near Buford Park, testified to a particular point that I was personally quite concerned about when the composition of the task force was announced.

She said, “I felt some of the ‘not in my back yard’ sentiment at times…”´ but ultimately “not in my back yard” was not a factor in the decision making of the task force. The recommendations made by the committee reflect the diversity and variety of Lane County’s broad offering of experiences and enjoyment available in our parks.

This report is the culmination of a year-long process that is nothing short of monumental. It is a model of public involvement that can serve as a template for how difficult and contentious circumstances and events can be addressed in a manner that delivers a strong and lasting product. A product that is unilaterally heralded and well-received.

While there is much detail and content in this report, I’m going to mention just a single passage that fully sums up the work of the Large Events Task Force and the product it has presented us with:

“It became clear during the Task Force’s deliberations that the mission of the Lane County Parks is challenging to accomplish…It also became clear from the public input opportunities provided by the Task Force that people are passionate about Lane County Parks—but often for different reasons. Some value natural and spiritual amenities that open space provides, while others enjoyu the chance to simply experience the outdoors while exercising, camping, boating, fishing or attending a festival or concert…”

The Task Force presented the Board with 34 recommendations for the implementation of its work. (Item 7C “view here)

Gratitude and thanks to the Large Events Task Force: John Hellmer, chair, Jeff Gaulton, Alan Murphy, Anna Lawrence, Brad van Appel, Bruce Newhouse, Dale Stoneburg, Don Hansen, Holly Stanley, Janis Ross, Larry Dunlap, Leslie Scott, Mary Moore, Randy Hledik, Mike Russel (staff support).

Updated Recent Eugene Library Money Measure Results

Results for Eugene’s library money measures during the past 25 years, including this November’s measure, can be seen here.

Recent History of Library Money Measure Votes

Results for Eugene’s library money measures during the past 25 years can be seen here.

Summary of Piercy v. Torrey Measure Analysis Posts

A summary of the Piercy v Torrey measure analysis posts can be seen here.

1998 and 2006 Library and Parks Measures Compared

Comparisons between the 1998 and 2006 library and parks measures can be seen here.