The Albany city budget is so tight over the next two years that a few positions in police and other departments are going unfilled. But this does not apply to the city’s reserve fund that’s available to goose the local economy.
You wouldn’t think that replacing four wooden steps at your back door would require a public hearing, but in Albany’s downtown historic district it does. So does replacing a rear door on another building not far from those steps.
The legislature wants Albany and other Oregon cities to allow more housing, and different kinds of housing, to be built in the space available, which makes sense. But instead of easing up on Oregon’s insanely convoluted land-use laws, it has added new complications with House Bill 2001.
Chances are drivers heading for the Ellsworth Street bridge on Highway 20 don’t need a sign to tell them they are entering Albany. But whether they do or don’t, the sign welcoming them to town is gone.
Launching and retrieving boats at Albany’s Takena Landing Park has become a bit more complicated this summer. Low water in the Willamette River has exposed a gravel bar blocking the end of the ramp, and there may be underwater obstacles as well.