Spanning the State: Finding the muse, Edition.

Carla Axtman

“So we ask our statewide representatives that find themselves in these extraordinary times to lead. That’s what we elected you to do”.

I've been in a bit of a creative funk lately so a couple of days ago, I purchased a wonderful book that includes 6 portfolios of work by the great landscape photographer Ansel Adams. I have yet to visit Yosemite or Glacier National Parks. But every time I view Adams' work that includes these great American treasures, I get the urge to pack up my photo gear and visit them. The book also had the happy coincidence of reinvigorating my creative spirit, in general. So I'm hoping to be off somewhere later in the week to capture some of Oregon's own beautiful landscape.

So with a grateful nod to one of the greatest photographers to ever capture an image....let’s Span the State!


The good folks at Street Roots are sounding the alarm on the State Budget. They want a special session, despite concerns that Republicans will likely attempt to hijack it in an effort to score political points. Some of the most vulnerable people in our state are entering a time where they’ll have little or no resources to assist them. “So we ask our statewide representatives that find themselves in these extraordinary times to lead. That’s what we elected you to do”. Strong, and eloquent words.

Last week, I blogged about the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals’ stunning reversal of a Hillsboro City Ordinance having to do with creating easements around the Hillsboro Airport. In addition to the Hillsboro ruling, LUBA also reversed a Yamhill County authorization for expansion of the Riverbend Landfill, saying it violated the law. The Riverbend expansion would have pushed the landfill into farmland, outside of the Yamhill County Comprehensive Plan for land use. LUBA has had a very busy (and excellent) week indeed.

There are some really stupid ways to do land use in Oregon and there are some smart ways to do land use in Oregon. Congratulations to Astoria and Bandon for figuring out the smart ways. (Umm..Washington County…how about taking some cues from these guys? It's stupid to hand out zoning based on developers’ whims to attempt to invigorate the county. Try good planning. It works.)

Apparently, the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in Medford. Unfortunately, so is the potential for securities fraud. Awhile back, Ashland teenager Rachel Segal created the Doodle Bra, a “multipurpose product for girls and young women that inspires creativity, fun and the sharing of ideas while still being an affordable necessity.” Or in other words, it’s a bra than can be drawn on with washable markers, washed, and drawn on again. Segal’s parents became the subject of a police investigation, which found five investors who had paid a total of $30,000 to buy stocks in Doodle Bra but no stocks ever were received.

Grove Insight’s new poll gauging the pulse of Oregonians on environmental issues has yielded some rather interesting results. Most of the survey (43%) was conducted with registered Republicans (registered independents: 22% and registered Democrats: 35%). A significant majority say that environment issues are an important factor when deciding whether to support a politician. In addition, a majority said they prefer a public official who balances environmental concerns with jobs and growth.

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