Douglas County

Unemployment rates continue to drop in Lane and Douglas counties. KLCC’s Tiffany Eckert speaks with a regional economist about the growth trend and what it means for communities.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Lane County is the lowest since June of 2008. Douglas County is trending about the same, seeing its second consecutive month with job growth.

Brian Rooney watches tracks employment in both regions. He says growth brings a mixed bag of benefits.

Unemployment Rates Drop In Oregon Counties

Jan 26, 2015

Unemployment rates fell in the month of December for several Oregon counties. Recent numbers show Lane County's rate at six point seven percent, Deschutes at seven point six percent and Douglas at nine point three percent.

Deschutes and Douglas rates remain well above the statewide average. Regional Labor Economist Brian Rooney explains why:

cityofroseburg.org

The City of Roseburg has two candidates on the ballot for mayor this year. Incumbent Larry Rich has served 8 terms as mayor. He is being challenged by Transportation Planning Manager, Mike Baker.

Larry Rich works as the Assistant Principle at Roseburg High School. He’s proud of infrastructure projects he’s worked on including the Highway 138 Corridor and Waterfront Improvements. Rich describes himself as the same person regardless if there is an election going on.

State of Oregon

Counties across the Northwest are heavily dependent on timber revenue from federal lands have been struggling to provide public health services. Now, one county in Oregon has told the state it will no longer provide those services. That's left state officials scrambling to figure out how to cover the gap.

Number Of Lane County Unemployed Ticks Up

Jul 21, 2014
Angela Kellner

The number of unemployed people in Lane County increased by more than 650 between May and June.  The unemployment rate remained the same at 6.8%.

But that could change in July, after this month's mill fire in Springfield.

Oregon Regional Economist Brian Rooney says Lane County has been in a period of positive employment growth.  But he calls the unemployment numbers for June…

Rooney: "A little bit of a step back."

nrtoday.com

Douglas county commissioner Doug Robertson announced his resignation Wednesday, June 11th.

KQEN reports Robertson has had the job since January 1981. He spent years focused on timber management issues and their effects on counties in Oregon. He was the president of the association of O&C Counties and said he felt the time spent visiting Washington took away from his regular work as a county commissioner.

Robertson also acknowledged the timber issue is not yet solved and knows the timing is not perfect for making an exit.

copyright, 2014 KLCC

co.douglas.or.us

Voters in Douglas County have seven candidates to choose from for County Commission Position Two.

Joe Laurence is vacating his Douglas County Commissioner spot, so none of the seven candidates are incumbents. If no one receives over 50 percent of the vote, the top two candidates will face a runoff in November.

Sally McKain is president of the Umpqua Valley League of Women Voters. She says Douglas County voters have typical concerns for their commissioners:

nrttoday.com

There won't be any logging in Douglas County's *Mildred Kanipe (Can-ipe) Park, for now. County Commissioners decided to defer a proposed harvesting plan until all other options have been exhausted.

Douglas County assumed responsibilities for managing the 11-hundred acre plot of land in 2012. The County didn't want to use any of its general funds to develop it into a sustaining campsite. It proposed logging a 20-acre portion to pay for the changes. Douglas County Commissioner Doug Robertson says the group "Friends of Mildred Kanipe Park" offered to raise the funds themselves.

mildredkanipepark.org

An outpouring of opposition to logging has delayed a decision by Douglas County Commissioners on the future of a public park.

Mildred Kanipe Memorial Park near Oakland is over a thousand acres. The parks department requires it to cover its own costs. A planning committee has recommended clear-cutting 20 acres of the park. A campground, built with the logging revenue, would make the park self-sustaining.

Gary Groth is Douglas County's Parks Director. He says the county has to follow a court judgment to raise money. It requires the county to use "sustained yield."