Author: Eric Howald

Budget talks continue to frustrate citizens

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Adding officers to the Keizer Police Department has been one of the top priorities for the Keizer’s Budget Advisory Committee for the past several cycles. Yet, despite repeated advocacy on the part of committee members, there are no additional officers in the current draft budget for the 2017-18 fiscal year. The situation drew the displeasure of some members of the committee at a meeting of the Long Range Planning Task Force Monday, April 10. The task force includes the budget committee and members of the Keizer City Council. “We talk about police...

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Crash–BOOM–bang

Wind storm leaves wreckage in wake By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Two trees felled by strong winds lay across Chemawa Road North and Northeast for most of a day while utility and public works crews scrambled to clean up and restore power throughout the mid-Willamette Valley Friday, April 7. “We had to wait for PGE and Comcast to respond and remove the downed wires before the tree could be cut up and removed from the roadway,” said Bill Lawyer, Keizer Public Works director. “Given the strength and duration of the wind storm, we actually fared pretty well.”...

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Daycare shut down by DHS

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes The sign on the door claims Iris Valley Learning Center, 530 Dietz Avenue N.E., was closed by the Oregon Department of Human Services due to “paperwork issues.” The truth is that the closure came after repeated violations of staffing and sanitation rules for child care facilities. “Going back several years, we would find issues at the site related to staff or sanitation and we would add additional support and supervision. Things would improve for a while then go back to where they were when we stepped in,” said Dawn Woods, child care...

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Keizer’s first doctor turns 100

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes Dr. Vernon Casterline suspected he might make it to 100 years old. “I had a second cousin who lived to 100 and two aunts who lived a little longer,” Casterline said. “I thought maybe I would, but it wasn’t something I was shooting for. Now, I’m getting cold feet.” He attributes crossing the threshold to “moderation in all things,” but he suggests getting started pre-birth. “Pick good ancestors,” he quipped. Casterline will celebrate the centennial of his birth with friends and family at Avamere Court on Thursday, April 13, but those who...

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Residents call for diversity resolution

By ERIC A. HOWALD Of the Keizertimes When Cyndi Swaney moved to Keizer from California, she ended up renting a room in a home with a group of other adults. When she arrived to move in, the property manager rushed out to meet her in concern. “The manager asked if I knew that one of the other roommates was a black man and if I was okay with that,” Swaney told the Keizer City Council at its meeting Monday, March 20. “I remember thinking it was an awkward question and I wondered why his race would matter.” As she...

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