Orcas just seaward of the Yaquina Bay Bridge

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May 172016


Anybody nearby that can get some “groovy” pictures of a large pod of Orcas (with a baby calf in tow) just west of the Yaquina Bay Bridge in Newport.


Email pictures to:  Dave@NewsLincolnCounty.com

Oregon’s economy – little like a roller coaster but averaging out….

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May 172016
State graphic

State graphic

Oregon’s Payroll Employment Gains 5,700 in April

Oregon’s payroll employment grew by 5,700 in April, following a revised gain of 3,800 in March. The April gain was close to the average pace seen over the past 12 months. Oregon’s unemployment rate held steady at 4.5 percent in April, the same as it was in March, and down significantly from 5.7 percent in April 2015.

In April, several major industries added jobs at a brisk pace. Professional and business services hired the most, adding 2,400. Next in line was government, which added 1,500. Three other industries added close to 1,000: health care and social assistance (+1,100 jobs); construction (+1,000); and other services (+1,000).

Manufacturing dropped by 1,300 jobs in April. Most of those losses were in durable goods manufacturing; however, Oregon’s semiconductor and electronic component manufacturing industry added jobs in April.

A record 64,100 nonfarm payroll jobs were added in Oregon over the past 12 months, for an annual growth rate of 3.6 percent. The next closest over-the-year gain–since at least 1990–occurred in May 1997 when 61,500 jobs were added.

Since April 2015, job growth has been rapid in construction (+7,900 jobs, or 9.6%), and in several industries that grew by more than 5 percent: professional and business services (+13,000 jobs or 5.8%); other services (+3,400 jobs or 5.7%); and health care and social assistance (+11,200 jobs or 5.1%). Furthermore, growth was widespread among other industries, with most adding more than 3 percent. No industry declined significantly since April 2015, although manufacturing did cut 100 jobs.

Oregon’s labor force participation rate rose to 62.6 percent in April, from 62.3 percent in March, and up from 60.8 percent in April 2015. The labor force participation rate is the share of the population 16 years and older that is employed or unemployed. It has been trending upward since last year.

Valley Urologists expand their services to the coast

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May 172016
Dr. Jeffery Palmgren

Dr. Jeffery Palmgren

Dr. Layron Long

Dr. Layron Long

Dr. Rob Laciak

Dr. Rob Laciak






Valley urologists expand service area to Lincoln County

[Lincoln City and Newport, Ore. – May 13, 2016] – Samaritan Urology is expanding its services to the central Oregon Coast, with physicians now seeing patients in Lincoln City and Newport.

Jeffrey Palmgren, MD, will see patients on the campus of Samaritan North Lincoln Hospital, 3100 NE 28th St., Suite B, Lincoln City. Patients can be referred by calling 541-812-5820.

Layron Long, MD, and Robert Laciak, MD, will see patients at Samaritan Pacific Communities Hospital at 930 SW Abbey St., Newport. Patients can be referred by calling 541-768-5486.

Samaritan Urology provides diagnosis, treatment, surgery and care for all adult urologic conditions for men and women, including but not limited to erectile dysfunction, kidney stones, prostate cancer, urinary infections and voiding dysfunction.

Palmgren will continue seeing patients at clinics in Albany and Lebanon, while Long and Laciak will continue seeing their Corvallis-based patients.

For more information, visit samhealth.org/Urology.

Lincoln County Weekly Real Estate Report – Tammy Gagne, Broker

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May 172016
Click ad for details

Click ad for details

Weekly Market Report
Data provided by Lincoln County Board of Realtors
Prepared by Tammy Gagne – Advantage Real Estate
5/9/2016 to  5/16/2016

FOR SALE                                                1010
SALES PENDING                                    252
SOLD – May 9 to May 16 17
2016 YEAR TO DATE SOLD                  388
2015 YEAR TO DATE  SOLD                 358
FOR SALE                                                683
SALES PENDING                                    23
SOLD – May 9 to May 16                         6
2016 YEAR TO DATE SOLD                  76
2015 YEAR TO DATE SOLD                  79

30YR FIXED – 3.625%
FHA/VA – 3.25%-3.5%
15 YEAR FIXED – 3.00%
5 YEAR ARMS –  2.75% – 3.25% depending on the lender

Average sold price of residential homes is  $267,879.  Average days on the market to sell is 179 days. Home sales are still active and brisk and only slightly above last year at this time. Land sales remain slower than last year, but seem to be picking up over the past month in pending sales.
Tammy Gagne is a licensed Realtor in the State of Oregon License #870600040

Follow up on the Otis area fire…

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May 172016

north lincoln fire rescue.ds

From North Lincoln Fire-Rescue Captain Jim Kusz:

North Lincoln Fire & Rescue was dispatched Saturday, May 14th at 11:26am to a call of “visible smoke from a structure ” in the area near North Bank Road and Trout Lane in Otis. A passerby noticed white smoke coming out of the roof vents, and heard a smoke alarm sounding, but could not see an address on the house. The passerby called 9-1-1 and knocked on the door to see if the house was occupied. The home at 2181 North Bank was unoccupied at the time of the fire and arriving fire crews broke down the side door and quickly extinguished the fire that was contained to one bedroom in the rear of the structure.

Approximately a dozen North Lincoln volunteers firefighters responded to the incident, in several engines, a tender and rescues.

North Lincoln’s Fire Marshal Doug Kerr was investigating the scene today and estimate the property loss and damage to the dwelling to be near 50,000 dollars; the cause of the fire is still under investigation.

This incident serves as a reminder to have working smoke alarms and visible address on your home or business. Having your property well marked with an address that can be easily seen on you building from the roadway or at the end your driveway, greatly assists fire, police and medicals crews to locate you quickly during emergencies. You can get reflective address plates at the North Lincoln Fire and Rescue’s Bob Everest Station at 2525 NW Hwy. 101 in Oceanlake or the St. Clair Station at 4520 SE Hwy. 101 in the Taft area in Lincoln City.

Newport: Proposed marijuana tax of 3% levied by the city headed for November Ballot.

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May 162016

Marijuana Oregonian photo

Oregonian photo

The Newport City Council Monday night decided to go after what amounts to a 3% sales tax on the sale of retail/recreational marijuana sold within the Newport City limits. Retail sales only. Not on medical marijuana.

The three percent tax, although technically not a sales tax, would be collected by the state and then funneled back to the city for use for just about any expense the city has in providing services to the citizens of Newport. There was quite a bit of discussion at a recent city council meeting on whether all or some of the tax revenues should be used for specific purposes – like drug related programs or enhanced police observation of marijuana use in the community to ensure marijuana is consumed in a lawful manner. But the council balked at targeting any particular use of the funds. To be sure, the city has a number of projects and programs that can always use a little bump in funding.

Thus far nobody’s come up with a solid estimate as to how much revenue the marijuana tax might generate.

Despite the uncertainty of as to the specific use of the funds, the 3% tax is headed for the November 8th election this Fall.

Newport City Council approves 2.9% hike in Thompson Sanitary bills to customers – Council explores helping to promote solar energy – COLA increases for employees; more for some who have been underpaid based on survey.

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May 162016

thompson sanitary banner not commercial
Newport City Councilors Monday night raised Newport residents’ garbage pickup bills by no more than 2.9% starting in July. Part of the raise was tied to composting costs and the other to cost of living adjustments (COLA). The final rate will be determined after the COLA figures come in later this week. But whatever it is, the combined rate increase won’t exceed 2.9% according to City Manager Spencer Nebel.

solar panels wiki commons Pushing solar energy on the Oregon Coast

City councilors expressed an interest in teaming up with Lincoln County Commissioners and other Lincoln County cities to promote green, renewable energy from the sun – solar panel installations on rooftops of businesses and homes throughout Lincoln County. Yes, solar panels generate electricity even on cloudy days.

A group called Environment Oregon/Solarize Lincoln County presented the council with a compelling argument to team up with county commissioners to coordinate community workshops throughout the county so that residents who may not know much about solar energy and solar panels can get that information through bonafide experts. The goal is to allow Lincoln County to generate up to 1.5 megawatts of power from private solar panels by 2022 and enjoy the huge savings solar panels offer in the long run. An Environment Oregon spokesman said solar power is not new anymore. It’s the fastest source of green energy in the country yet many business and home owners still don’t know much about it.

The idea is for local government agencies to team up with local and regional solar installation contractors to offer a three month window to have their properties analyzed for solar power capabilities and be offered major discounts and attractive financing, if required, to where an average solar installation will look something like this:

solar installation cost

The first step in the cities/county partnership would be to sponsor workshops for the public to come and learn about solar – from sunbeam, to roof top, to wall plug. They say coastal solar systems work even on very cloudy days. In fact Newport Police Chief Mark Miranda told the council that his family ordered solar panels for his home and his electric bill fell to around $30 a month as opposed to their previous average of $100 a month.

The workshops would inform attendees of all the in’s and out’s of solar power and help them to figure out financing and how long it would take for their solar installation to pay for itself. They say it’s around eight years, on average. But from there-on, the savings continue.

Environment Oregon also stated that solar panels will be a godsend if the Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake strikes the coast in our lifetime. While the regular power grid would be down likely for months on end, the sun will go on shining, generating power for those with solar panels.

The “Educate the Public About Solar Power” workshops would be made possible by the county and each city contributing $5,000 each toward a three month intensive education process touring the county. The money would pay for just materials and demonstrations. Nobody gets paid since the county already has a “Sustainable Communities” advocate in the form of Newport City Councilor Mark Saelens who is employed by the county. He said the approach to quickly educate the public about solar power has been going on nationwide at a rapid clip. He said Clackamas County, Eugene, Happy Valley, Hood River, Pendleton, Portland, West Linn, Lake Oswego and Milwaukee have already launched their own workshop programs to get solar panel power up-and-running in their areas.

Councilor Ralph Busby raised an objection that it all looks to him like the cities and counties would be subsidizing the solar panel industry. Councilor David Allen jumped in to remind everyone that the city spends hundreds of thousands of dollars a year on promoting tourism. He said promoting green energy and saving Newport residents money on their power bills is a legitimate policy decision which is properly within the discretion of the council. Allen also pointed out that among the most heavily subsidized industries in the country is the fossil fuel industry which still fulfills the vast majority of America’s power needs.

The vote to have City Manager Spencer Nebel send a “letter of interest” to the county commission for the solar panel workshops was nearly unanimous – Councilor Busby providing the only “no” vote.

City Employees Get a Pay Raise – around 2%

Newport municipal workers, both union and non-union are in for at least a 2% pay increase retro-active to last July. But it might be higher for some workers based on a city-wide job description analysis as the study is finding that some workers have been underpaid compared to other similar-sized cities around Oregon. Those with the greatest disparities might have their pay raises phased in over a number of years.

Learning how to get more from your private timber – wide number of options

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May 162016

ecology forestry 101

Northwest Natural Resource Group is offering a workshop on wildlife habitat and silviculture on Saturday, June 4, 2016 in McMinnville. After a morning lecture session we will tour Miller Woods in the afternoon and witness ecological forestry in action. This workshop will empower landowners to greatly improve the ecological and economic value of their forests.

Ecological Forestry 101: Intro to Silviculture & Wildlife Habitat

WHEN: Saturday, June 4, 2016, 9:00am – 5:00 pm

WHERE: Miller Woods, 15580 Orchard View Road, McMinnville, OR 97128

REGISTER AT: http://ecological-forestry-or.eventbrite.com or just click here.

Topics this class will cover include:

Forest dynamics
Forest health
Young stand management
Uneven-aged management
Hardwood management
Habitat needs of keystone PNW species
Maintaining & enhancing wildlife habitat
Incorporating wildlife habitat enhancements into forest management practices
And much more!
Speakers will include:

Glenn Ahrens, forester and researcher for Oregon State University Extension in Clackamas, Hood River and Marion Counties

Mike Crabtree of Yamhill Soil & Water Conservation District’s

Lori Hennings, senior natural resource scientist for Metro

Michael Ahr, forest conservationist for West Multnomah Soil & Water Conservation District

Jeanie Taylor, owner of Gopher Valley Forest.