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Slant 2017-01-05

• Eugene got a windfall of sorts with a nearly $19 million Comcast payment from a fee for broadband services. Take $8.7 million of that payment and put it towards a new City Hall and suddenly the Eugene City Council has $27.45 million to play around with. Woohoo! Or wait, not so fast. The citizens of Eugene have a long history of not wanting to spend a bunch of cash on City Hall, and the city has a long history of making rash decisions about City Hall. More urgently than a fancy city hall, what this area needs is a good homeless shelter. Not a rest stop for the night, but a shelter where people can go day or night and something that will take the burden off of the volunteers of the Egan Warming Center and other service providers to the unhoused. Let’s talk. Can we do some good planning and get an affordable City Hall and help those in need? 

 

• Mayor Lucy Vinis told us recently that she is eager to move past “mayor-elect” and dive into the job she won in the November election and the May primary. Although Vinis will earn only about $20,000 a year, she will have considerable power to bring factions together, set the agenda, craft the directions Eugene will go and build trust between the people and their local government. Kitty Piercy worked incredibly hard at this job and we are grateful. All indications are that Mayor Vinis will do the same.

• Alice Doyle of Log House Plants and the Cottage Grove Blackberry Pie Society brings us the bumper sticker of the week: “Bring Back Facts.”  It may be a little late for this one, but we’ll keep on trying. Get involved at blackberrypiesociety.org.

 

• EW’s Corinne Boyer has received the 2017 Tom Parker Award for Excellence in Media from Lines for Life, an Oregon-based nonprofit fighting substance abuse and suicide, for her July 26, 2016, story “Overprescribed Opiates: The rise of heroin addiction and the effort to end overdose deaths.” Lines for Life, whose work appears in the story, writes, “in particular, we appreciated your comprehensive view of addiction, treatment and the complicated nuances of public policy and prevention.”