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Along -- Taxpayers lose $407 million in public timber sales.
of the Game -- Eugene is home to world-class Ultimate athletes.
People: Dave Sullivan & Jonathon Borgida
Is racial profiling happening in Eugene
-- or in Oregon? A dozen of the largest law enforcement agencies in
the state have started or are about to begin requiring officers to
collect up to 16 pieces of data every time they stop a person to see
if race or other issues are skewing their actions. The effort will
be bolstered by a bill headed to the governor's desk.
The first city to start gathering data on
the subject was Hillsboro, which three years ago began requiring officers
to note the age, gender, race as determined by the officer, reason
for the stop, action taken during the stop and whether a citation
was issued. Eugene begins a similar program next week. Officers here
will report on 16 separate points, including number of passengers
in the vehicle, whether there was a language barrier, length of stop,
and race both as perceived by the officer and as stated by the person
Data analysis has been a hurdle in the program, explained
state Rep. Vicki Walker, D-Eugene, who sponsored the new state legislation.
The new law will allocate money to help law enforcement agencies figure
out what the numbers mean.
An early version of the bill would have required law
enforcement agencies to collect the data. The final version only encourages
the data collection, establishing a minimum of six data points (the
Hillsboro model) and helping with post-collection analysis. Each community
would develop its own data collection plan, in part as a way to keep
the citizens involved in the process. The bill passed both houses
When Hillsboro's data were tabulated, the people performing
the analysis said the data were insufficient to show a pattern, Walker
explained. An analysis of Portland data -- which involved more questions
for each officer to answer-- showed some reasons for concern.
Walker said the point isn't to lynch officers -- under
the new law, officers will remain anonymous. Rather, it's to address
issues of public perception.
"If the public perceives that the community law
enforcement agency is engaging in racial profiling, then you've got
a problem," she said. -- OI
The Northwest's drought and California's energy crisis
were expected to harm Columbia River salmon; now the numbers are out
to show just how much.
-- So the Eugene City Council nixed Hynix's nothing-to-lose
ploy for extended tax breaks amounting to some $16 million.
Nice job. Councilor Pat Farr was the only vote against pinching
off the corporate candy. He's worried about the city's long-term
"investment" in employment. Investing in Hynix/Hyundai
is like taking your poodle to a new groomer. You don't know
what you're going to get back. The fact that Hynix claims to
need more tax breaks to survive is scary -- not to mention other
monumental problems plaguing the company. Now we're hearing
rumors that Hynix will be asking for tax breaks for its planned
$155 million retooling, but doesn't want those tax breaks to
be tied to increasing local jobs. If we're going to give tax
incentives to attract new employers, wouldn't we be better off
betting on a stable of small, sustainable enterprises?
-- Will Eugene get an independent on-staff auditor
who will scrutinize the mission and performance of every department
in the city, including our city manager's office? It will take
a charter amendment to make it happen (read: vote of the people),
but the idea is on track and we predict the council will put
it on the ballot and citizens will go for it. We'd all like
more assurance that our tax bucks are being spent wisely and
that we are getting all the services we need from city government.
Some major issues remain to be hashed out, such as whether the
position is elected or appointed, and questions of certification
need to be clarified. Managers within city government are reportedly
open to the idea, but a little paranoid about what sort of person
will be looking over their shoulders. Maybe they've been watching
too many "Weakest Link" shows. The city's ad hoc Charter
Review Committee will continue debating the topic, along with
proportional voting, how department heads are fired, and hiring
an in-house city attorney. Fascinating meetings. Next one is
7 pm Thursday, June 28 at the McNutt Room, 777 Pearl.
-- Anarchy in Eugene continues to get people
excited elsewhere. A public television documentary producer
in Australia plans to send seasoned reporter/videographer Olivia
Rousset to Eugene in late July to do a story on Jeffrey "Free"
Luers who was recently doomed to 22 years in prison for torching
three trucks. "In Australia, that would be a sentence for
murder," says SBS TV's "Dateline" producer Lesley
Holden. Know Free and wanna be grilled by a pushy Aussie? E-mail
-- Village Voice sports writer Jon Kalmuss-Katz
heard about EW's cover story on Joey Harrington and the
Heisman campaign last week and the duck tale is likely to end
up in the irreverent New York alt paper this week or next. Check
According to the Fish Passage Center, a governmental
organization that works with state, federal and tribal fishery agencies,
low flows and reduced spilling to help young salmon migrate past the
Columbia and Snake River dams are causing major problems. As of May
23, yearling Chinook and steelhead heading downstream between McNary
and Bonneville dams are facing a trip that's twice as long as their
predecessors last year. The fastest fish travel times between traps
upstream and Lower Granite Dam are 20 percent to 231 percent longer
this year than last.
In a May 23 memo, the center's Michele DeHart wrote
that "the present hydro-system operations, load following, elimination
of spill for fish passage at most projects (dams) and low flows are
having a significant detrimental impact on the juvenile spring migration
of yearling Chinook salmon and steelhead."
Fluctuations in water levels have led to strandings
and substantial losses of the healthiest population of salmon left
in the Columbia. The fall Chinook in the Hanford Reach -- the largest
free-flowing stretch of the Columbia -- for years have had the best
habitat, water quality and survival in the system. According to a
June 4 Fish Passage Center update, between 7 and 10 percent of that
total population is expected to die this summer. According to the
Institute for Fisheries Resources, those fish are the only salmonids
in the system doing well enough not to require listing under the federal
Endangered Species Act. -- OI
The Salem Statesman Journal makes
profits of more than 43 percent, ranking it as one of the most lucrative
newspapers in the Gannett Corp. empire.
The SJ's profit margin ranks 11th out of 87
Gannett papers, according to internal Gannett documents unearthed
by Nashville Scene reporter Willy Stern in a recent investigation.
The SJ's operating profits grew from 36.1 percent in 1994 to
43.2 percent in 1997. By comparison, Nike made profits of only 6 percent
In 1997, Gannett papers averaged profits of 27.3 percent.
Gannett's flagship USA Today made a 12.6 percent profit.
The SJ boasts of being "part of our community"
and donating to local non-profit causes. But such donations are just
a fraction of the millions of dollars in profits the Gannett corporation
sucks out of Salem's economy and consumers. Higher advertising costs
translate into higher consumer prices and higher costs for local businesses
struggling to pay workers adequate wages.
The profits at the monopoly daily contributed to Gannett's
$6.2 billion in revenues last year.
The article in the Nashville Scene focused
on profits at the Gannett-owned Tennessean newspaper, which
trailed the SJ with profits of 35.2 percent in 1997 and a ranking
The SJ's published "operating principles"
include serving customers and providing readers with a "catalyst
for positive change" and a "watchdog" in the state's
But the Scene quotes media critics who say
high Gannett profits divert money from newsrooms, weakening a newspaper's
ability to serve the public.
"The Tennessean -- the one institution
that should be protecting, preserving, and criticizing our democracy
-- is failing us so that Gannett's shareholders will be enriched,"
says Ed Kimbrell, a journalism teacher at Middle Tennessee State University.
"The result is that our city and our region are impoverished."
David Halberstam, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author
and former Tennessean reporter, tells the Scene that
Gannett's profit margins are "a disgrace." He adds, "Those
who are enriched are the company's stockholders and the managerial
ranks at the paper. Instead of doing the right thing by putting out
a good newspaper, they are doing short-term, greedy, selfish things."
The last round of contract negotiations
between The Register-Guard and the Eugene Newspaper Guild didn't
Lance Robertson, the union's lead bargainer, says
the Guild offered the most concessions to date, a level he called
kind of "scary." The Guild agreed to a company drug and
alcohol policy; not to strike for the duration of a four-year contract;
more restrictions on employee grievances; a commission program for
circulation district managers in lieu of a salary increase; exemption
from hours and overtime for circulation staffers, and expanded managers'
rights that could lead to more free-lance staffers, potentially eroding
staff jobs. In exchange they wanted improvements in health care, Martin
Luther King Jr. day as a paid holiday, and a 3 to 4 percent pay raise
for everyone but the circulation district managers. (The company wanted
to cut those salaries by 4.5 percent while the Guild wanted them frozen.)
But the Bakers didn't bite.
"Their response was 'hell no,'" says Robertson.
"They're done negotiating."
So after 56 years as a volunteer-only union, the Eugene
Newspaper Guild is going to accept money from its parent union to
hire a part-time organizer. Suzi Prozanski, president of the local
Guild, didn't want to tip her group's hand to the Guard's management
by saying how much money they received or exactly what the new organizer
would do. But part of the person's work will involve coordinating
activities with the community and union members; for instance, the
organizer might have worked with the musicians, puppets and union
activists putting together the Guild's May Day rally.
Prozanski and Robertson both say the Guild has received
several good applications, and the new staffer should be on board
The Guild always prided itself on doing its own work,
Roberston says, but when the company hired $500-per-hour, union-busting
attorney Mark Zinser, they "declared war on us and we've got
to do something to survive." -- OI
Eugene is a natural place to find support
for environmentally sustainable community development. So it was only
a matter of time before ShoreBank Pacific found its way down here.
John Haines, vice president of the self-proclaimed
"first environmental bank" in the nation, came down to Eugene
from his Portland office two weeks ago to meet with two borrowers
and make calls on area companies he thought would be "interested
in meeting a bank that thinks the way we do."
How does ShoreBank Pacific think? They're a regular
commercial bank, but one that tries "to be a problem solver"
for borrowing companies, "connecting them to resources, ideas
and approaches that can help their business and at the same time improve
environmental performance and their community relations."
Some of the businesses Haines says are likely to connect
with ShoreBank Pacific's vision are alternative architects, organic
growers and companies generally trying to do something innovative
or solve a problem with their environmental performance.
Haines says he "always thought that Eugene is
a great community that would intuitively connect with the new breed
of bank," and with little effort to date the bank has two borrowers
and one investor here.
Galen Ohmart of Solarc Architecture and Engineering
in Eugene has worked with ShoreBank Pacific for two years, mostly
on energy-efficient buildings. ShoreBank helped Solarc build its own
energy efficient office, and has partnered with the consultants on
projects in Portland, letting Solarc provide designs while ShoreBank
Ohmart, whose company is also a depositor with ShoreBank,
thinks it's "a great thing" that Haines is working to extend
the bank's range up the Willamette Valley.
"If you're a business such as ours and you have
environmental or sustainability goals, it's hard for you to access
a bank that doesn't have much baggage," he says. "Maybe
they finance timber cutting industries, or maybe they finance industries
that you would not support. And so having access to a bank that is
taking your money and investing it in things that you do support is
a very good thing. At least it is for us." -- OI
EW offices will be closed Wednesday,
July 4, and an early advertising deadline will be in place for our
July 5 issue. The deadline will be a day early at 5 pm Thursday, June
28. For more information, call 484-0519.
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lose $407 million in public timber sales.
It's been a theme of forest activists for years that logging on
federal lands costs taxpayers more than it makes, and a new report by the Washington,
D.C.-based Taxpayers for Common Sense shows major losses in the Willamette National
Forest, public lands in Oregon and national forests around the country. Its numbers
also provide an opportunity to analyze the effects of different logging strategies
on public lands in Lane County.
According to the new report, the U.S. Forest Service lost $407
million from logging on public lands nationally in 1998, the most recent year for
which data were available. The Willamette National Forest hemorrhaged more than any
other, spending nearly $30 million more preparing timber sales than it got from selling
them that year. Five of the nation's top 10 money losers were in Oregon, including
the Mount Hood, Winema, Deschutes and Umpqua forests. Losses from the Oregon forests
alone constituted nearly 25 percent of the total national forest system deficit.
In the late 1990s, the government's General Accounting Office did
a nearly identical evaluation of losses in the timber sale program. That report found
the Forest Service lost an average of $330 million each year from logging in all
the nation's federal forests between 1992 and 1997.
Jonathan Oppenheimer, who heads the taxpayer group's forest program,
says his report changed only one piece of the accounting system used by the GAO:
"They didn't include the regional office costs and we think that's -- one of
the major costs associated with the logging," he says. In the Forest Service's
Region 6 -- which includes Oregon and Washington -- those costs totaled just under
$9 million; total losses for the region topped $100 million.
Patti Rodgers, a spokeswoman for the Willamette National Forest,
said the report's numbers are way too high.
"Without having done an in-depth review of this, there (is)
some pretty questionable accounting that seems to provide the answer they wanted,
but it is not an accurate picture," she said.
For instance, she says the report includes the total amount of
money that goes to local governments for roads and schools -- in this case, nearly
$30 million -- even though the Willamette pays only one quarter of that amount from
its own budget. The report also lists as a cost the money the local forest contributes
to various federal funds. Although these monies don't stay in the Willamette's coffers,
Rodgers says, the forest does have access to them.
Oppenheimer, however, says those "off-budget" funds are
one of the things his group wants to see changed. He saysputting logging receipts
into funds that pay for wildlife rahabilitation or habitat restoration creates a
perverse incentive to do more logging in the name of ecosystem health.
The forest that made the most money in the nation under the taxpayer
group's accounting system was the Siuslaw, which stretches across coastal Lane County.
According to the Taxpayers' report, the Siuslaw made $11 million more than it spent
logging 1,058 acres in 1998, the only national forest in Oregon to turn a profit.
While the Siuslaw produced only 40 percent of the wood the Willamette
did, it generated proportionately more jobs and income in the process. According
to Forest Service numbers, the Siuslaw supported 564 timber-related jobs in 1998,
or 20 jobs per million board feet. The Willamette created more jobs over all -- 1,136
-- but only 16 jobs per million board feet. The same pattern held for the income
those jobs provided: Logging the Siuslaw brought workers $681,405 per million board
feet; logging the Willamette brought $525,007 per million board feet.
James Johnston of the Eugene-based Cascadia Wildlands Project,
finds it interesting that the Willamette, which still logs old growth, came in a
loser while the Siuslaw, which cuts only second growth, came in a winner.
"The Siuslaw makes money because they manage tree farms,"
Johnston says. "The Willamette loses money because they'd rather strip-mine
500-year-old old growth than manage the thousands of acres of tree farms on the forest.
-- They could practice innovative silvicultural techniques in second-growth stands
like the Siuslaw (does), but they're fixated on old-growth clear-cutting."
Logging in old growth costs more because of extra surveys, more
complicated planning and inevitable opposition if not actual litigation -- and the
forest loses many lawsuits over its proposals to log ancient trees, Johnston says.
"If you want a timber-sale program that makes sense, you have to have a timber-sale
program that judges, scientists and the public support."
Copies of the Taxpayers for Common Sense report are available on
the group's web site http://www.taxpayer.net/forest.
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of the Game
Eugene is home to world-class
"Ultimate!" The other team cries, commencing the point.
One hundred and seventy-five grams of textured white plastic glides
silently above the green grass in a wide arc for 70 yards, then plops into the softest
part of my palm like I'm made of Elmer's Glue.
That was the Ultimate Frisbee equivalent of a kick-off in football.
In the sport of Ultimate it's called the "pull." I took the pull down and
now my teammates spread out to work the disc upfield, evading the opposing players,
who now sprint forward to force a turnover.
History, Team Darkstar 1984, toss their discs, and images into the future.
"Forcing forehand!" shouts the mark.
One of my players, Sarah, sprints to the dead-side, and I throw
her a scoober, breaking the mark. It was nine yards, but now we're trapped on the
sideline. I sprint to the back of the stack.
"Trapping!" yells a defender who sets a mark on Sarah,
forcing her to throw only backhands. The wind picks up, and our team makes small,
"Don't clog!" I scream, making small sideways cuts to
keep my guy honest. "David, get out!"
David clears for Meagan. She takes off sprinting deep from the middle of
the stack, does a looper cut, and comes under. Sarah hits her with a 20-yard backhand,
still on the line. A defensive player flies by like Superwoman, arms outstretched
in an attempt to block, to no avail.
"Nice bid," I think, as a surprised Meagan turns from
her fallen defender to look for a continue, finding me.
I too have faked deep and now I'm coming under, a break the mark
to the middle, because my defender was cheating to the backhand. Megs fakes a gak,
then pivots back and breaks the mark with a beautiful low-release forehand; I catch
it two-handed and turn, glory in my eyes.
I see Breeze going deep, a few yards ahead of his guy. We played
college together; he was money in the zone. I fake a low forehand to send the mark
lunging by me in an effort to block the throw that never comes. Instead, I stand
up tall, taking the disc back like a baseball, and huck what I intend to be a 40-yard
hammer to the zone. It takes off from my hand like a rocket to victory.
Just then, a gust of high wind rushes in, and the disc flutters,
then slows, and finally plunges backwards into a pile of running, confused bodies.
It hits the ground.
In the next half-second, offense becomes defense, and defense becomes
"What a swillfest," I hear someone groan from the sideline.
Hell of a Workout
What you've just read is an authentic example of the uniqueness you
might have witnessed at the Summer Solstice Ultimate Frisbee Tournament this past
weekend in Eugene.
Backhand -- A pass thrown across the body, your typical Frisbee toss.
Bid -- An attempt to block or catch the disc.
Breaking the mark -- Throwing around the defensive Mark, letting offensive
players move the disc upfield nearer the opposite sideline.
Cuts -- Running maneuvers made by players to escape, or catch one another.
Flick -- See Forehand.
Footblock -- When the Mark stops the flying disc by stretching out and kicking
Force -- Direction of throws that a Mark is allowing via body positioning.
Forcing Backhand -- When the Mark sets up on the throwers Forehand side, like
a human wall, allowing only Backhands to be thrown, thus limiting the area defensive
players are likely to require covering.
Forehand -- Not thrown across the body, but rather from the hip, like a gunslinger
or a sidearm baseball pitcher.
Gak -- Useful for breaking the Mark, Gaks fly upside-down and are a shorter,
modified version of the Hammer.
Going Ho -- When a leaping player flies horizontally to the grass in an attempt
to catch or block the disc.
Hammer -- A pass thrown from above the head with the motion of a baseball
player, in which the disc flies upside-down.
Handblock -- When the Mark stops the flying disc by reaching out and smacking
Lay Out -- See Going Ho.
Looper -- A Cut intended to give the impression of running deep, though the
offensive player then sprints back towards the disc for the catch.
Mark -- The defensive player who takes an intimidating position next to the
thrower, to try for a Foot or Hand Block, and Ten-Count, and via body positioning
allows the thrower to throw only to one side of the field.
Scoober -- See Gak.
Spirit of the Game -- An official rule calling on all players to show sportsmanship
and avoid any "win-at-all-costs" behaviors.
Stall -- When a marked offensive player doesn't throw before a Ten-Count.
This results in a turnover.
Swill -- Crappy play, or a crappy pass.
Swillfest -- A game in which there are many uncompleted passes, and poor,
often low-percentage choices by the players.
Ten-Count -- When the Mark counts to ten before a pass is initiated, causing
Trap -- A defensive strategy, in which the thrower is near the sideline and
via positioning of the Mark, is allowed to only throw up the line and not towards
the middle of the field.
Turnover -- A change of possession of the disc.
Wooga -- A fluttering pass with no spin on the disc.
Ultimate Frisbee is a non-contact sport in which two teams of seven
players score points by passing the disc to a teammate in an endzone. Players may
not take steps while holding the disc; they may move it only by passing. An incomplete
pass or an interception of the disc results in an immediate change of possession,
making the game a hell of a workout.
But more than phenomenal fitness, it's a highly competitive sport
with a twist. There are no referees. In Ultimate, each athlete is morally bound to
uphold the rules, one of which is called the "Spirit of the Game." Spirit
of the game denounces that which is contrary to the very essence of the sport: the
taunting of other players, or other "win-at-all-costs" behaviors. Amazingly,
players exercise the rule and adhere to it. I've heard the word "spirit"
shouted out from the sidelines at arguing players, to remind them of their obligation
to act cool, and "spirit awards" are often handed out at tournaments to
acknowledge players who have displayed the best attitudes.
Eugeneans have played Ultimate for almost as long as the sport's been
around, dating back to 1968 in Maplewood, N.J., when a group of high school students
graduated and took the game to a collegiate level. The UO was the first American
university to host Ultimate as a sport, and appropriately, Eugene is home to some
of the word's finest players, and also a yearly tournament of exceptionally high
level of play, named for the day that inflames its date: summer solstice.
Typical of most tourneys, men's and women's teams played at all
levels of the game this weekend. In the mellower matches I saw lots of smiles, a
few sprints and a handful of optimistic, lopsided throws. Rising up a level to "open,"
with mostly college teams, budding athletes commanded opponents' respect by showing
reserves of explosive speed -- along with a few exceptional throwers per team and
a couple of defensive stars.
Sidelines Sunday were packed with spectators cheering for the semis
and finals of the "elite" division; teams made up of the best collegiate
players who've gone on to become very good and even great. Due to the lightning quick
speed of the game, each has a role designed for his or her combination of unique
characteristics: speed, defense, disc handling, ability to read the disc and the
flow of play on the field, and good decision-making ability. I've found that superlative
ability in any two of these fields can still define a great competitor.
These players can sprint all weekend long, consistently making
throws that leave you wondering how they managed to make the play appear so easy
under such chaotic-looking conditions. The defensive action is nothing short of amazing
athletic feats taking place at break-neck, sprinting speed. Many of the competitors
this past weekend have competed at a national, and even an international level.
A national championship tournament, held by the Ultimate Player's
Association (UPA), takes place every year somewhere in the U.S.; in 2000 it was in
San Diego, with a team called DOG (Death or Glory) coming out on top. That qualified
DOG for the world tourney, which is under the governing body of the World Flying
Disc Federation (WFDF).
At Worlds last year, held in Heilbronn, Germany, the U.S. went
home with a num-
ber one ranking, followed by Sweden and Germany. Some 70 teams from 23 countries,
from South Africa to the Slovak Republic, flew in to compete for the title of World
champions, and well as a chance to represent the sport in the first year of acceptance
into the World's Games.
The top six teams, U.S., Canada, Japan, Sweden, Germany, and Finland,
will embody the spirit of the game this August in Akita, Japan.
After all the hubbub, the traveling, and the worldwide tournaments,
Eugene had the luck and initiative to host many of these competitors for one tiring
weekend, illuminated by the longest days of the year. Many of the best came to compete
and embody the "spirit of the game."
Check out www.upa.org for local, regional, national, and
international disc information.
Back to Top
Volunteer dishwashers needed! Next year's
Willamette Valley Folk Festival is planned as the first zero-waste
music fest. "It will put the festival on the map as the cleanest
in the country," says Jon Borgida, third-year manager of the
Solar Root Juice food booth. Borgida has landed a grant to extend
his booth's "real plates and silverware" policy to the entire
event. "We compost our food waste, recycle or re-use all our
material," says Borgida, formerly a restaurant chef and ski bum,
now a legal assistant and UO student. "I started the booth seven
summers ago," says proprietor Dave Sullivan, who sold food from
a cooler at Grateful Dead concerts until the tour "dropped me
off in Eugene." Sullivan discovered gardening through the UO's
Urban Farm Program, worked for grower JJ Haapala, and now raises veggies
on his four-acre Sweet Leaf Organic Farm north of Eugene. Find Sweet
Leaf produce at the Eugene Farmers' Market, and look for the newly
renamed Sweet Leaf Cafe food booth at the Dexter Lake Festival this
weekend and at the Oregon Country Fair. -- Paul Neevel
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