Lane County, Oregon

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800px-Map of Oregon highlighting Lane County.png

Lane County is one of 36 counties in Oregon. It was established in 1851 and, as of 2010, has a population of 351,715 people. Named after General Joseph Lane, Oregon's first territorial governor, the county seat is Eugene.[1][2]

Website evaluation

See also: Evaluation of Oregon county websites

This site was evaluated on Aug. 27, 2012.

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Budget
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Meetings
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Elected Officials
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Administrative Officials
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Permits, zoning
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Audits
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Contracts
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Lobbying N
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Public records N
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Local taxes P
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County websitesGuide.png
Transparency grading process


The good

  • Budget
    • Has budget information online.[3]
  • Meetings
    • Has county meeting information online.[4]
  • Elected Officials
    • Contact information is available for elected officials.[5]
  • Administrative Officials
    • Contact information is available for administrative officials.[6]
  • Building Permits and Zoning
    • Has building permits and zoning information online.[7]
  • Audits
    • Has audit information online.[8]
  • Contracts
    • Has purchasing information online.[9]

The bad

  • Lobbying
    • Lobbying information is not available.
  • Public Records
    • Public records information is not provided.
  • Local Taxes
    • Has some tax information and online tax payment, but does not have a tax breakdown.[10]

Budget

The adopted budget in 2011-2012 is $579,534,989.[11] The proposed budget for 2012-2013 is $479,085,398, a decrease of 17.3 percent.[12] The county retains audit reports on its Finance website, archived since 2007.[13]

Category Expenses
Personnel Services $154,853,860
Materials and Services $218,292,849
Capital Outlay $8,279,181
Capital Projects $27,948,349
Bond Issuance Costs $20,000
Other Fiscal Transactions $301,581
Mortgage Principal Payment $0
Mortgage Interest Payment $0
Debt Service $12,426,744
Interest Paid Interfund Loan $1,600
Payment to Refund Bond $0
Fund Transfers $26,960,341
Interfund Loan $100,000
Operational Contingency $35,958,720
CIP Contingency $45,000
Operational Reserves $42,050,678
UEFB $16,881,392
Closure/Post Closure $13,926,434
Future Projects $18,561,174
Reserve Comp Liability $2,250,000
Bonded Debt Res $677,086
TOTAL $579,534,989

Public Employees

Lane County does not keep an online database for information about employee salaries and benefits. In Dec. 2010, the county posted monthly salary information and the names of employees, but no job title; the information was published online by The Register-Guard.[14]

Elected Officials

Name Position
Jay Bozievich West Lane Commissioner
Alex Gardner District Attorney
Rob Handy North Eugene Commissioner
Sid Leiken Springfield Commissioner
Pete Sorenson South Eugene Commissioner
Faye Stewart East Lane Commissioner
Thomas M. Turner Sheriff

Minutes and agenda of the commission meetings are available online and archived since 1998, though archived minutes for 2012 is spotty and incomplete.[15]

In May, Commissioner Rob Handy sued the county for documents pertaining to "an allegation (that) he violated campaign finance law."[16]

Administrative Officials

For information on public employee salary by job code and working title, visit the Human Resources page of the county website.[17]

Salaries

See also: Oregon state government salary

The top 20 employee salaries as of Dec. 2010 are listed below, but full name and job title are unavailable.[18]

Name Salary
M. Farivar $204,132
P. Helms $177,504
M. Gage $166,572
J. Spartz $147,912
C. Jensen-Fox $144,852
C. Grenier $144,852
B. Blumenstein $144,852
W. Saville $133,128
T. Black $120,852
R. Rockstroh $120,852
D. Suchart $118,680
P. Perlow $116,496
T. Turner $116,496
L. Richardson $116,484
W. Warnisher $116,124
D. Pugh $116,124
P. Graebner $116,124
T. Hermens $116,124
E. Hasselman $116,124
R. Lane $116,124

Pensions

See also: Oregon public pensions

Oregon has one public pension fund, the Public Employees Retirement System. According to the PERS website, "you are vested in the OPSRP Pension Program on the earliest date in which you complete at least 600 hours of service in each of five calendar years (the years do not have to be consecutive). If you are an active member any time on or after reaching normal retirement age, you become a vested member regardless of years of service. Once you are vested in the OPSRP Pension Program, you cannot lose your benefit rights unless you withdraw from the program."[19]

The state has funded PERS 86 percent, with $5.8 billion in unfunded liabilities.

An April 28 article in The Oregonian estimates about 10 percent of pensioners double dip.[20]

Emergency personnel

Lane County has a Public Safety Coordinating Council designed to ensure "every effort is taken to effectively use resources to prevent crime, reduce crime, and increase the sense of safety within" the area.[21] The county also has a fire defense board.[22]

Lobbying

See also: Oregon government sector lobbying

According to Open Secrets, Lane County spent $20,000 on lobbying in 2012 and has spent $1,054,777 since 1998.[23]

Year Amount Spent on Lobbying
2012 $20,000
2011 $45,202
2010 $44,100
2009 $44,100
2008 $164,075
2007 $244,100
2006 $43,500
2005 $42,000
2004 $31,500
2003 $42,000
2002 $4,200
2001 $40,000
2000 $270,000
1999 $20,000
1998 $0
Total $1,054,777

Transparency & public records

The Public Information Office can be reached via email.[24]

A Jan. 2011 article in The Register-Guard reported on the temporary availability of public employees' salaries. The county posted salary information at a bulletin board and all county libraries for two weeks.[25]

Taxes

Tax information can be found online.[26] Residents can pay taxes online, access reports, and find other information.

Ballot measures

Ballotpedia has an article about ballot measures in Lane County.

External links

References