Gomberg Persuades Employment Department to Keep Lincoln City Satellite Office, Expand Services
At the urging of State Representative David Gomberg, Oregon Employment Department officials have reconsidered their previous plan to shutter the satellite Lincoln City employment office. In fact, service levels are set to increase next year.
Due to budget cuts, the office was originally set to close October 31st, but Gomberg secured and agreement to keep the office open though the end of December. At a recent meeting, Gomberg sat down with Employment Department Director Lisa Nisenfeld and her staff to make the case for keeping the office open permanently.
“Oregon is experiencing a slow climb out of recession, but we’re not on top of it yet. Now is not the time to be cutting resources to help our unemployed neighbors find work,” Gomberg said. “The folks who need our help the most can’t afford a 30 minute trip each way to the Newport employment office every week. The Lincoln City employment office is an important resource for North County residents trying to get back on their feet,” Gomberg said. The decision to close the office was initially based on its low number of contacts per employee. However, this number included phone and internet contacts which were credited to the county hub office in Newport. For in-person contacts, the Lincoln City office compared favorably. Director Nisenfeld recently toured the office with Rep. Gomberg and spoke with department staff there, which contributed to her decision to keep the facility open.
Tom Erhardt, Area 3 Manager for the Business & Employment Services Division made the decision official Sunday via e-mail: “I am very pleased to be in the position to tell you that Oregon Employment Department (OED) Executive Leadership has decided to maintain our presence in Lincoln City beyond December 31, 2013. In fact, we plan to increase our service level beyond the current two day per week schedule.”
“I would like to thank Director Nisenfeld and Lincoln City Mayor Dick Anderson for their partnership on this issue. I’m so glad we could find a solution to continue serving the residents of north Lincoln County who are looking for a job,” Gomberg said.
The Lincoln City office is housed in City Hall space now donated free of charge by the city. The Employment Department is currently working with the mayor to secure permission for facility upgrades in the space to expand employment services to north Lincoln County job seekers.