HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Property tax: Our crazy system

Written May 30th, 2013 by

Oregon’s property tax system is so complicated that most citizens have no idea how it works. Many public officials don’t either. The complications are such that sometimes, voters approve taxes for police and fire protection and some of the money is legally siphoned off and given or loaned to private developers. Hard to believe, but […]


A road tax on new bikes

Written May 29th, 2013 by

Nobody likes more taxes, but as someone who often rides a bicycle on public roads, I would not mind as modest bike tax that goes into the state highway fund. This idea has been kicking around for years, and Colorado is said to have just such a tax. Now, according to a report in the […]


Bomb case: We don’t know enough

Written May 29th, 2013 by

Albany got into the national news over the Memorial Day weekend. Let us hope we never have this kind of dubious distinction again. A friend back east told me she heard the news of the arrest of an Albany high school student for planning to attack his school. Her own town, in Maryland, had been in the […]


Urban renewal tax fix falls short

Written May 28th, 2013 by

The Oregon House today (May 28) is scheduled to vote on a sensible bill to correct an injustice dealing with property taxes and urban renewal, but it won’t do any good in Albany, at least not yet. The bill is HB 2632-A. It would remove local option levies approved by voters after January 1, 2013, […]


Our bridges: The “scour” concern

Written May 26th, 2013 by

Our highway bridges over the Willamette River are not likely to fall down like the one on I-5 over the Skagit River. That one was of a design where failure of one member causes a collapse, and it got hit by a tall load. But there is one potential concern with the bridges we have […]


Mindless vandalism downtown?

Written May 26th, 2013 by

I have no idea what the details of this story are because there was no one around to ask. What it looks like is that someone heaved a hefty chunk of concrete into the windshield of this car and left it where it fell. I shot this photo around noon on Saturday while walking up […]

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Albany: Timber Street tract land in default

Written May 25th, 2013 by

About 75 acres of undeveloped land surrounding Albany’s Timber Ridge School is about to come into city ownership because the owners have made no payments on assessments for the street and utility lines there. Now it’s just a question of how the transaction is done, the city council was told. The land has been owned by the […]


 
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