Local News – LCSO Contract Talks – Siuslaw Interpretive – Gas Prices Steady – Siuslaw Bridge Closures

Contract Talks in Gridlock for Sheriff’s Deputies

After nearly a year of negotiation and mediation, it looks as if a contract dispute between Lane County and the union representing Sheriff’s Deputies is headed to arbitration.

Both sides submitted their final offers and this week Deputies said they would budge no further.

The differences boil down to annual cost of living increases.  Lane County offered no increase for the current year; one percent for next year and two percent for the year following.

Union negotiators are seeking 1.5-percent this year; two percent the year after and then somewhere between two and four percent in the third year.

Lane County negotiators say they are about $1.2-million apart; the union says the difference is actually between four and nine-hundred thousand dollars.

Either way, they two sides will have two weeks before they can submit a “last-best-offer”, and if they can’t reach an agreement on that… an arbitrator will select one or the other and both sides will be bound by it.

Sheriff’s deputies are not allowed to strike.


The final piece of the puzzle is finally in place.  Interpretive signs went up last week at the Siuslaw Interpretive Center, a quarter-acre park between the river and Bay Street just east of the bridge.  The research for the eight signs was coordinated by city staff members Megan Messmer and Shawn Penrod.  The later talked about what people will see on the signs when they visit.

          210 – “Something on the rain garden out there, a brief history of Old Town and the Florence area as well as a more in depth history on the timber and cannery industries that we had here before as well as a history of the bridge construction.”


In the few months since the park opened, it has become a popular spot for visitors and residents alike to stop and admire their surroundings… now they can get a little bit of information about the sights while they are there.


After holding relatively steady through the winter, the average price for a gallon of regular gasoline has proven to be volatile in the past few weeks.

After a low of $3.12 a gallon registered in early February, the average price locally has jumped to $3.46.

Even with the hefty hike, the local average is still well below the Oregon and national average prices as measured by Triple-A.

The U.S. Average price increased a penny a gallon this week to $3.54; the Oregon average is up three cents in the past seven days and stands at $3.66 a gallon.

Marie Dodds with Triple-A of Oregon and Idaho says she expects prices to rise slightly before peaking later this spring.  She points to seasonal refinery maintenance and accompanying disruptions to supply to be the major factors.


Traffic over the Siuslaw River Bridge will be constricted next week as Central Lincoln PUD works to remove old facilities from the structure in accordance with Oregon Department of Transportation.  Crews will block the south bound lane of Highway 101 across the Siuslaw River Bridge Monday, March 31st from noon to 4pm, then Tuesday through Thursday, April 1st through 3rd between 8am and 4:30.  Flaggers will control traffic and emergency vehicles will have priority throughout the project.

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