News for those who live, work and play in the Santiam Canyon

County to receive $6M for transportation

Transportation programs in several Linn County communities will receive about $6 million in funding from the Oregon Transit Commission, Special/Rural Transportation Coordinator Reagan Maudlin told the Linn County Board of Commissioners July 18.

In January, the commissioners approved applying for the funds which cover a 2023-2035 biennium.

The funding comes in two categories, the State Transportation Improvement Fund (STIF), which comes from ID card fees, non-highway gas tax, and cigarette tax revenues and the STIF Payroll fund, which is supported by a statewide payroll tax.

Known as STIF Population funding, disbursements include: City of Albany, Dial-A-Ride, $50,000; City of Lebanon Dial-a-Bus/LINX, $138,821; Oregon Cascades West Council of Governments, $36,000; Oregon Mennonite Residential Services, $15,000; Senior Citizens of Sweet Home Dial-a-Bus, $50,000; Senior Citizens of Sweet Home Linn Shuttle, $196,000; Volunteer Caregivers, $120,000; Sunshine Industries, $65,000; Total: $670,821.

The STIF Payroll biennium totals are: City of Albany Linn-Benton Loop, $683,000; City of Albany Linn-Benton Loop, $99,000; City of Albany – Albany Transit System, $1,276,850; City of Lebanon Dial-a-Bus, $1,618,000; Oregon Cascades West Council of Governments, $50,000; Senior Citizens of Sweet Home Linn Shuttle, $880,000; Senior Citizens of Sweet Home Dial-a-Bus, $502,000.

“These STIF projects represent bare minimum funds to maintain existing public transportation services in Linn County with only two exceptions,” Maudlin wrote in his report. “The OCWCOG project is to continue a live online bus tracking service for public access and Albany ATS are awarded funds to support the only expansion project for the period. ”

In other business, the commissioners:

• Were informed there were 65 births in the county in June, 35 girls and 30 boys and 117 deaths, which included three suicides. Tobacco use was a contributing factor in about 19 percent of the deaths.

• Approved a contract between the Public Health Department and the Jackson Street Youth Shelter to rent one shelter bed at $148.53 per day for young people who may need assistance due to Alcohol & Drug or mental health issues. Not to exceed $54,215.

• Approved a student affiliation agreement with Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Ariz., to provide unpaid internships to students in the nursing degree program.

• Gave Law Library Librarian Amber Boedigheimer permission to apply for a $45,000 grant from the Jackson Foundation to continue support of the Landlord-Tenant Warm Line to assist people who are facing eviction.

• Were informed by County Accounting Officer Bill Palmer that conservative budgeting and spending during the past fiscal year resulted in an 80 percent expenditure of General Fund money compared to 77 percent the prior year, 46.5 percent of the Road Fund; 76.8 percent of the Law Enforcement Levy and 68 percent of the Health Fund. The county begins the new fiscal year with a $91 million fund balance. 

• Approved 4 percent Cost of Living Adjustments to members of the SEIU/OPEU union and the Juvenile Detention Association.

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