Missing roundabout artwork to return, with ‘sibling’

Anyone who’s ever bought a piece of art, brought it home and hung it on the wall, only to be a bit surprised about how it fits – or doesn’t – in its new setting can understand how the members of Art in Public Places felt, shortly after Portland artist Mel Katz finished installing his two colorful art pieces, “Sunra” and “Atilt,” at the 14th Street and Newport Avenue traffic circle a few weeks ago.

Pretty quickly, two issues came to light, in their minds: The two-part artwork’s placement didn’t show off the abstract, painted aluminum sculptures to their biggest audience of passing travelers – they were more like thick aluminum slivers, turned sideways, with a far less-than-desired impact.

What else? Well, once in the great outdoors, the artwork seemed a bit … dwarfed by its surroundings.

“It didn’t really fill the space,” said Cate O’Hagan, an Art in Public Places (http://www.artinpublicplaces.com) board member.

“This is something we learn as we ago along,” even after 30 years of privately funded public art in and around Bend, O’Hagan said Tuesday, “In the studio, it looks huge – even in the (downtown) library, it looks substantial.” But the 9-foot-tall artwork, on 3-foot concrete pedestals, didn’t fill the setting as they had hoped.

So the artwork came out again a few days ago, and crews moved in to reposition the concrete pedestals, also adding a third.

A third?

That’s right – thanks to Mike Hollern and the Bend Foundation, a third, quite similar Katz sculpture, entitled “Double Arc,” will be joining “Sunra” and “Atilt” in the roundabout next week. The two initial pieces cost $35,000; the Bend Foundation is putting up another $20,000 (a discount from the $22,000 retail price) for the sibling, part of a suite of artwork Katz made for a show at the Laura Russo Gallery in Portland. (More of Katz’s pieces can be seen on the gallery’s Web site, at http://www.laurarusso.com/artists/katz.html .)

Initially, O’Hagan said, “We went to the gallery to look at all of them, and said, `Nice – but we have a budget.'” Now, thanks to the funding assist, she said, “We’re repositioning them, and adding a third.”

The placement issue has brought yet another lesson for the group, about making sure the artist’s vision meshes with their own – including what’s typically the last decision, regarding the artwork’s placement.

“One of the things we did with `Phoenix Rising’ (the bright orange bird at the 14th and Galveston traffic circle) is a scale model in plywood was put on a pole, and tilted up in the intersection,” O’Hagan said. “We took a walk several blocks down Galveston, and we were able to see at a distance how it would appear. There are steps we can do in the future to get a better idea.”

Group will work with artist on placement

The rising volume of debate in recent years over the privately chosen public artworks has prompted Art in Public Places to revise its methods and include the public in the selection process, and also to work out a new agreement with the city (see bendbugle.com/?p=11039). But it seems, the group itself had delegated to the artists a share of authority it now wants to make sure doesn’t go awry.

“Mel (Katz) does have a preference for how his art sits, on a neutral base of rock work, surrounded by a circle of landscaping,” O’Hagan said. “The artists are specific about how they want their art positioned. Mel came in and positioned the pieces. We came in and said, `Whoops.’ We hadn’t thought about the direction of the majority of traffic.”

“We’ve been letting the artist have the full say on the setting,” she said. “We need to have a more thorough conversation, considering the dominant traffic pattern. This one, we’ve been able to correct before it’s all done.” She added that city officials said the small changes in concrete have a “minimal” cost.

“The third piece will stand a little apart from the other two” in the new configuration, OHagan said.

Some folks, no doubt, aren’t too fond of the newest roundabout art, like the previous ones. But O’Hagan said the citizen reviews that she’s heard have been “nothing but positive, as far as I can tell.”

“We’ve been out there a number of times, standing out there with our hands on our hips in the roundabout,” she said. “We’ve heard, `Way to go, dudes!’ and `Love the art!'”

Then there was another common reaction to abstract art – befuddlement, giving way to disgust.

“One woman pulled up, stopped traffic and said, `What is it?’ We said, `It’s a piece of contemporary art.’ She said, `Yeah – but what is it?’ We said, `Whatever you want it to be.’ She was disgusted with it. There’s some people who seem to require a literal reference point, and will never be satisfied with anything but.”

O’Hagan wasn’t aware that Mayor Oran Teater has thrown out the idea of using synthetic grass – based known as AstroTurf – in roundabouts, to cut maintenance costs. In fact, Teater posed for a photo with a patch of fake grass in the temporarily empty 14th and Newport roundabout.

Some of his colleagues call the AstroTurf idea a bit extreme; others suggest that it be tried in a less visible, not-so-controversial locale.

“I’d be interested to hear from the public” on that idea, O’Hagan said, calling it an “aesthetic issue” that could dovetail into the public art debates as well.

“You hear, `Not in my backyard!’ about the art stuff – but AstroTurf in my back yard? It’s an insult to put AstroTurf in my neighborhood, when the next guy’s neighborhood gets art.”

Leaders mourn passing of builders group exec

The area’s building community was joined by government leaders in expressing shock, sadness and condolences to the family of Kevin Wing, head of the Central Oregon Builders Association, who died of apparent Type 1 diabetes complications while camping at Cultus Lake on Sunday.

Wing, 32, had come to Bend from Portland in 2000 and championed homebuilder issues in sometimes very visible fashion, most notably in legal disputes with the cities of Bend and Redmond over plans to substantially raise “system development charges,” the fees paid for new home and commercial/industrial construction to, in the view of many, make sure “growth pays its own way.”

“I’m still – I don’t believe it,” said a grief-stricken colleague, Chris Krieger, director of membership services for the Central Oregon Builders Association (http://www.coba.org).

Krieger informed COBA members by e-mail Monday that Wing “passed away peacefully in his sleep early Sunday morning.” He was survived by his wife, Michelle, and daughter Kiley, 6. A gathering of family and friends was held, but no formal funeral.

In lieu of flowers, the family asked that donations be made to Kiley Wing’s college education fund, Account No. 11709800, in care of Northwest Community Credit Union, 61490 S. Highway 97, Bend 97702-2104..

Wing, a Hillsboro native and Willamette University graduate, had served as a lobbyist and later as director of government affairs with the Home Builders Association of Metropolitan Portland. He worked the halls of Salem and elsewhere on the often-complex issue of SDCs, paid ostensibly to offset the costs of developing roads, water and sewer. He often spoke of builders being willing and able to pay their fair share – but taking strong issue with many in government about what that “fair share” would be, and how best to assess the costs of needed new facilities.

Deschutes County Commissioner Dennis Luke was in the state Legislature previously and worked with Wing on SDC issues.

“We had talked some on the local level about the county building department and their high level of service,” Luke said, “and the fact that we use all the fees collected in that department and do not move them to the general fund, like some jurisdictions.”

Luke said Wing “seemed very organized and committed to his work. He also seemed very good at negotiating with local government in the area of SDCs. It will be difficult for them (COBA) to find someone of his ability to replace him.”

City manager mourns `great loss’

The SDC issue predated Bend City Manager David Hales’ arrival, but he came to admire Wing for his knowledge and passion.

“I had a great respect for Kevin,” Hales said. “I thought he was very knowledgeable. I didn’t always agree with him, but I thought he represented well the interests of the homebuilders. I also found him to be very approachable.”

Hales recalled a League of Oregon Cities meeting at which Wing spoke at an SDCs workshop. After the presentation, he recalled, “I went up to him and said I’d like to have some dialogue about how to resolve these issues without turning it over to the lawyers.” And eventually, a settlement was reached, reducing the transportation SDCs and beginning a new process of deciding upon a formula for the charges.

“He was very passionate, but he did his homework,” Hales said. “He was a force to be reckoned with.”

Wing also agreed to serve on the city’s ad hoc citizen committee that reviewed transportation SDCs, in the wake of the court settlement. “It was extremely beneficial to have him there on that committee,” Hales said.

“It’s not only a great loss to COBA, but a great loss to Bend and the entire state of Oregon,” Hales said. “He was a very talented young man who had such promise for the future.”

Fish Passage Task Force needs new member

SALEM – The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife seeks people with an interest in fish passage issues to become a member of the Fish Passage Task Force.

Applications must be recieved from qualified individuals by 5 p.m., Friday, Oct. 31.

The Fish Passage Task Force is a citizen advisory group created by the 2001 Oregon State Legislature that meets at least four times each year to work with and advise ODFW on fish passage issues. All expenses associated with these meetings are paid by ODFW. The Task Force is composed of nine members, with three representing fishing and conservation, three representing water users, and three representing the public-at-large.

ODFW’s Director appoints Task Force members to four-year terms, with a two-term limit. Recently, a water user representative from the Task Force resigned as a result of a career move. ODFW is seeking applicants to fulfill the remainder of this Task Force member’s term, which expires in February 2006, with the potential for re-appointment to another term lasting through February 2010.

Applications will be reviewed by ODFW staff and a recommendation will be made to the Director for the position. The new Task Force member will be appointed in November. Please contact Tom Stahl, Fish Passage Coordinator at (503) 947-6228 or Thomas.Stahl@state.or.us for a copy of the application or with any questions.

Fish Restoration & Enhancement Board to meet

SALEM – The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s Fish Restoration and Enhancement Board will meet 10 a.m., Friday, Oct. 3, in Newport at the Embarcadero Hotel, 1000 Bay Street, Newport. Members of the public are invited to attend.
The agenda includes a review of the latest grant applications, overview of the R&E Program budget, updates on current hatchery upgrades and repairs, and other business. An opportunity for public comment will be provided.
The Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program was created by the Oregon Legislature in 1989 and is funded by a surcharge on sport and commercial fishing licenses and commercial poundage fees. The program is overseen by a seven-member citizen board that reviews proposals and recommends funding for fish restoration and enhancement projects throughout the state.
For more information on the Fish Restoration and Enhancement Program, visit the web at www.dfw.state.or.us/ODFWhtml/InfoCntrFish/RnEProgram/R&EHistory.html, or contact acting Program Coordinator Dan Van Dyke at (503) 947-6232.

Friday deadline looms for Oregon deer hunters

SALEM – The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife today reminded hunters to buy their buck deer tags, fall bear tags and general season cougar tags by the Friday deadline.

Friday, Oct. 3, is the last day hunters may purchase tags for controlled buck deer centerfire hunts in eastern Oregon, general season centerfire buck deer in western Oregon, general season fall bear and general season cougar. Deer tags are $14.50 for Oregon residents and cougar and bear tags are $11.50 each for Oregon residents.

Most rifle deer seasons in Oregon begin Saturday, Oct. 4. Last year, 202,499 people hunted deer. As of Sunday, Sept. 28, 135,334 tags had been sold.

“There’s really no telling why people wait til the last minute, but they do,” said Tom Thornton, ODFW’s big game program manager. “The earlier they can get to a license agent to buy their tags, the better chance they have to avoid lines.”

Hunters may purchase big game tags at any one of more than 600 license agents in Oregon. Hunters who want to change their tag may do so before either hunt begins, but only at an ODFW office.

ODFW also reminds hunters to check with local land managers on fire restrictions before setting camp. While the weather has recently cooled, it remains extremely dry throughout the state. Land manager contact information may be found on the ODFW Web site at http://www.dfw.state.or.us .

Pacific Power encourages electrical safety

Reading, writing and math – all basics of elementary and middle school educational programs offered in schools. How about the science of electricity and electrical safety? Thanks to Pacific Power, this life-saving subject is available in elementary and middle school classrooms across its six-state service area.

Annually since 1996, Pacific Power reinforces its commitment to electrical safety education by offering through the mail a specialized curriculum to the 1,231 elementary and middle schools across its service area. The curriculum includes information on how electricity works and how to live, work and play safely around it. Grade-specific booklets and an interactive CD-ROM are part of the educational package. Pacific Power will send this information, including a mail-in order card, to first, third and fifth-grade elementary school teachers and math and science middle school teachers now through mid-November.

“Our commitment to the public’s safety begins in schools. What better group to reach first than young people, who are eager to learn and easily retain this valuable and life-saving information?” said Amy Eschete, Pacific Power public safety manager. “We hope that schoolchildren will take into their homes what they’ve learned and educate their parents, siblings and friends about how to be safe around power lines and electricity.”

Last school year, 74 percent of the schools in Pacific Power’s service area requested educational materials. More than 3,700 teachers responded to the utility’s offer of free materials to use in educating more than 111,000 students. Pacific Power also offers additional elements to enhance classroom learning. The utility provides safety presentations using high-voltage demonstration boards. These presentations show why birds can safely walk on wires, the dangers of kite flying around power lines, how ladders can be hazards in home improvement projects and other scenarios involving electricity. Last year, 786 presentations were given to students in schools across the utility’s service area, reaching nearly 22,000 students.

An electric safety curriculum with grade-specific activities, safety tips and an interactive safety quiz are easily accessible online at www.pacificpower.net. Educators interested in scheduling a safety presentation for their classrooms should call 1-800-375-7085. For other safety-related questions, call 1-888-221-7070 or visit http://www.pacificpower.net and click on Safety.

Libraries ‘Wellness Wednesday’ scheduled

Ponce de Leon never found the fountain of youth on his globe trotting adventures. He may never have left Spain if he knew that a youthful and long life could be achieved simply by eating the right foods. Dr. Stacy Sharlet, DC, discusses what a body needs to remain healthy for a lifetime at presentation titled “Food of Youth: Eating For Longevity,” on October 8th at 6:00 p.m. at the Sunriver Area Public Library. This presentation is part of the Wellness Wednesday series, dedicated to health and wellness and hosted each month at Deschutes Public Libraries.

Dr. Sharlet, who has been in private practice in Bend since 1998, is a graduate of Logan Collage of Chiropractic and holds additional certification from the International College of Applied Kinesiology. She treats patients for various conditions, including allergies, and chronic pain. “Certain foods and chemicals in a diet can get you into trouble and age a person prematurely,” says Sharlet. “On the other hand, there are other foods that can help you keep feeling young.” If you think wheat germ and fiber are the included on her list of “youthful foods,” guess again! “Some of them are not what you might think.” Don’t miss this opportunity to learn about the foods that can keep you feeling youthful.

Each month, Dr. Sharlet will address a different health related topic at libraries throughout the district. For a complete list of the series topics, please visit Deschutes Public Library at http://www.dpls.us or call 312-1032. Wellness Wednesday is free and open to the public.

Environmental Quality Commission to meet

Oregon Environmental Quality Commission
To Meet Oct. 9-10 in John Day

Special meeting with local officials and the public to discuss environmental issues and economic development scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 9

What: The Oregon Environmental Quality Commission (EQC) is having its next formal meeting in John Day on Thursday and Friday, Oct. 9-10. In addition, the commission will hold a public meeting beginning at about 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 9 in John Day to discuss local environmental issues and to hear from local citizens. The public is invited to all meetings. The EQC is a five-member citizen panel appointed by the governor to serve as DEQ’s policy and rule-making board. The commission holds regular meetings throughout the state to adopt rules, establish policies, issue orders and decide appeals of fines or other department actions.

When/
Where: Thursday, Oct. 9, 1 to approx. 4 p.m.: Regular commission meeting, USDA Malheur National Forest Building, Juniper Hall, 431 Patterson Bridge Road, John Day.

Thursday, Oct. 9, 6:30 to 8 p.m.: Public meeting to discuss local environmental issues, activities and opportunities, at The Outpost banquet room, 155 W. Main St., John Day.

Friday, Oct. 10, 8:30 a.m. to approx. 3 p.m.: Continuation of regular commission meeting, USDA Malheur National Forest Building, Juniper Hall, 431 Patterson Bridge Road, John Day.

Background: The agenda for this meeting can be found at
http://www.deq.state.or.us/about/eqc/agendas.htm

Key agenda items include (times are approximate):
• Thursday, Oct. 9, 1 p.m.: Overview of DEQ air quality programs and policies
• Thursday, Oct. 9, 2 p.m.: Discussion and possible adoption of new rules to establish two new vehicle testing programs in Portland and Medford in order to make doing business with DEQ easier. The first program, On-Road Clean Screening, would screen vehicles while on the road and send owners of the cleanest vehicles notices that their vehicles need not be tested at DEQ vehicle inspection test stations. The second program, Self Service Testing, would allow customers to self-test their vehicles’ emissions at a designated facility 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
• Thursday, Oct. 9, 2:30 p.m.: Discussion and possible adoption of new air quality rules dealing with toxic air pollutants. The state program would target urban-area air toxic emissions from mobile and various small sources of pollution to complement the industrial focus of the federal air toxics program. Oregon’s program would take a community-based approach and would adopt concentration limits for certain pollutants, identify high-risk areas of the state, and implement local emission reduction plans.
• Friday, Oct. 10, 9 a.m.: Briefing on demilitarization activities at the Umatilla Chemical Depot in Hermiston.
• Friday, Oct. 10, 10 a.m.: Overview of DEQ land quality programs and policies.
• Friday, Oct. 10, 1:30 p.m.: Discussion and possible adoption of proposed amendments to state hazardous waste management rules that incorporate recent changes in the federal Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. Proposed changes include adoption of procedural and technical corrections to federal law, new federal requirements, and clarifications to state-only hazardous waste rules consistent with federal citations and references.

For More
Information: To learn more about the Oregon Environmental Quality Commission, commission members and their meetings, please visit
http://www.deq.state.or.us/about/eqc/eqc.htm

Gov approves proposal to help job creation

(Gresham, OR) – Continuing his pledge to put Oregonians back to work, Governor Ted Kulongoski last week approved a proposal to provide the City of Gresham with a loan of $155,000 in Strategic Reserve Funds to finish planning for a new 1,400-acre industrial lands complex.

“This project will help create as many as 15,000 living-wage jobs in the East Metro community,” said the Governor. “It is a perfect example of why increasing the availability of industrial lands is a central element of our economic development efforts – when we identify and certify available industrial lands for development, we help existing Oregon businesses expand, we attract new businesses to our state, and we help communities and citizens thrive.”

The 1,400-acre Springwater area, located southeast of the City of Gresham, was added to the Portland Metropolitan Urban Growth Boundary as recommended by Metro in December 2002 and adopted by the Oregon Land Conservation and Development Commission in March 2003. A large portion of the Springwater area is identified for new employment, comprised of some 1,100 acres of industrial land, while the balance of the area targeted for commercial and residential uses.

The City of Gresham’s goal is to adopt the overall Springwater Urbanization Plan within 18 months so phased annexation and development can begin in early 2005. The Springwater Urbanization Plan objectives will emphasize high-value employment and development and will focus on green practices to enhance aesthetic, economic, and physical functions of the envisioned Springwater Community. The Oregon Economic and Community Development Department (OECDD) will work closely with the City of Gresham and other partners in implementing the Plan and bringing jobs to the project.

The Strategic Reserve Funds approved by the Governor will help the City of Gresham complete the planning coordination and market development efforts necessary for the City of Gresham to prepare the area for development. The project funds would be repaid by the end of the 2003-2005 biennium and thereafter would be available for other projects.

The project was funded out of the Strategic Reserve Fund administered by the OECDD. Agency staff worked closely with representatives from the Cities of Gresham, Troutdale, Wood Village, & Fairview, METRO and others to complete the fund request process.

State, Wal-Mart target minor tobacco sales

Oregon Attorney General Hardy Myers on Tuesday filed an assurance of voluntary compliance in Marion County Circuit Court against the nation’s largest retailer. Wal-Mart, calling for the company to introduce new policies and procedures to reduce tobacco sales to minors in its stores throughout the nation.

In Oregon, the settlement affects all 21 Wal-Mart stores and five “super centers.”

Myers joined 42 other states in an ongoing,
multi-state enforcement effort that focuses on retailers that have high rates of tobacco sales to minors. Previously reached agreements apply to all Walgreens stores and to all gas stations and convenience stores operating under the Exxon, Mobil, BP, Amoco, and ARCO brand names.

“Today’s agreement with state law enforcement officials expresses a commitment by Wal-Mart to do a better job in protecting the health of its young customers,” Myers said. “The states’ ultimate goal is to secure agreements from retailers throughout the country to adopt policies and practices to prevent youth access to cigarettes and other tobacco products.”

The agreement requires Wal-Mart to do the following:

•Train employees on state and local laws and company policies regarding tobacco sales to minors, including explaining the health-related reasons for laws that restrict youth access to tobacco.

•Check the identification of any person purchasing tobacco products when the person appears to be under age 27, and only accept currently valid government-issued photo identification as proof of age.

•Use cash registers programmed to prompt identification checks on all tobacco sales.

•Hire an independent entity to conduct random compliance checks of approximately 10 percent of all Wal-Mart stores every six months.

•Prohibit self-service displays of tobacco products, the use of vending machines to sell tobacco products, and the distribution of free samples on store property.

•Prohibit the sale of smoking paraphernalia to minors.

The attorneys general will monitor compliance with the agreement and have reserved the right to enforce future violations of the agreement as well as the laws governing sale of tobacco to minors.

The multi-state law enforcement group has long recognized that youth access to tobacco products ranks among the most serious public health problems.

Studies show that more than 80 percent of adult smokers began smoking before the age of 18. Research indicates that every day in the United States, more than 2,000 people under the age of 18 begin smoking and that one-third of those persons will one day die from a tobacco-related disease. Young people are particularly susceptible to the hazards of tobacco, often showing signs of addiction after smoking only a few cigarettes.

Oregonians who suspect violations of state tobacco laws can file complaints by calling the Attorney General’s consumer hotline at (503) 378-4320 (Salem area only), (503) 229-5576 (Portland area only), toll-free at 1-877-877-9392 or online at www.doj.state.or.us .