City Councilor Joe Egli is withdrawing from the mayoral race, he said earlier this week.
Egli was preparing to run against Mayor Lore Christopher, who is seeking her seventh term as Keizer’s mayor. Also in the race is City Councilor David McKane.
Even with Egli’s withdrawal, November’s election is shaking out to be as transformative an election as Keizer has seen in some time. None of the council incumbents up for re-election – Mark Caillier, Brandon Smith and McKane – are seeking another term, while former Mayor Dennis Koho and West Keizer Neighborhood Association board member Ken LeDuc are both running for council. Eamon Bishop, Matt Chappell and Marlene Quinn have all announced plans to seek the same council seat.
With a host of new councilors in November, Egli would be positioned to be nominated for council president, according to the governing body’s rules and procedures. The document stipulates that the longest-tenured councilor who has never served as council president will be nominated.
The council president presides over meetings and represents the mayor at public events when she is unable to attend.
“It would give me a great opportunity to represent our city and get the growth I need as far as regional contacts,” Egli said about that possibility. “It would also give me the opportunity to help lead our new councilors in the direction of being open, listening and a little more transparent.”
However, the rules process has not always been followed – Christopher declined to nominate McKane, instead supporting Councilor Cathy Clark. That set off a chain of events where McKane quit the council, then rescinded his resignation before it went into effect.
Egli said he plans to continue as a “city councilor and business advocate.
“I will continue my practice of listening to our citizens, asking questions to bring the heart of the issues forward and looking for results that are mutually beneficial to all involved,” Egli said. “During the next two years I will continue to incorporate our citizens into our decision making process and strive to improve communication between our government and our citizens.”
Egli and Christopher clashed over a proposal to use urban renewal dollars to pay down debt left behind from a developer’s apparent default on improvement bonds at Keizer Station. Without the developer’s payments, the city was liable for the debt. With or without urban renewal dollars, city staff’s proposal was to repossess the land for future sale and recuperation of funds. The plan passed over Egli’s objection.
City crews are almost done resurfacing more than 20 streets this summer.
The most significant project comes on Sunset Avenue, where crews are widening the street to add pedestrian and bicycle lanes from River Road west to Rivercrest Drive N. City officials don’t anticipate any street closures, butt there will be delays, with flagger-controlled one way traffic.
“The residents will be notified directly by the contractor and we will be updating the schedule on the city website as well,” said Public Works Director Bill Lawyer.
Street resurfacing list
Street projects for the 2011-12 year are nearly complete. Here are the streets still scheduled for resurfacing this summer:
• Dunlin Court NE from Rickman Road to the dead end.
• Gobert Avenue NE from Dearborn Avenue to Keizer Road.
• Thorman Avenue NE from just south of Lawless Street to Dearborn Avenue.
• Manbrin Drive NE from Cherry Avenue to Brooks Avenue.
• 7th Avenue NE from Chemawa Road to Claggett Street.
These are already done:
• Clear Lake Road, from Timothy Lane to O’Neil Road.
• 14th Avenue NE, from River Rock Drive to 1505 Rock Ledge Drive.
• Rock Ledge Drive NE from 14th Avenue to Rock Crystal Lane.
• Manzanita Street NE from River Road N. to Trail Avenue.
• Kelly Court NE from Kalmia Drive to the cul-de-sac.
• McClure Street N. from Lockhaven Drive to the north property line of Keizer Elementary School.
• Willow Lake Road N. from Windsor Island Road to just west of Todd Court.
• Elizabeth Street N. from Chemawa Road to Dearborn Avenue.
• Elvira Street N. from Evans Street to Dearborn Avenue.
• Cedar Court N. from Cummings Lane to the cul-de-sac.
• Rivercrest Drive N. from just north of Sunset Avenue to south of Hollyhock Place.
• Hornet Drive N. from Hollyhock Place to 5th Avenue.
• Hollyhock Place from Rivercrest Drive to the cul-de-sac.
• Shady Lane NE from Brooks Avenue to Pleasant View Drive.
• Kelly Street NE from Kafir Street to Kalmia Street.
• 14th Avenue NE from Lockhaven Drive NE to Harmony Drive.
• Windsor Island Road from the Wildwood Villa Mobile Park to just south of Naples Street.
• New Terrace Drive N. from Wheatland Road to Birchwood Court.
• Rafael Drive N. from Riverwood Drive to Shoreline Drive.
• Hollyhock Place N. from 5th Avenue to 3rd Avenue.
• Manbrin Drive N. from Rivercrest Drive to just east of Rowan Avenue.
• Verda Lane NE between Dearborn Avenue and Chemawa Road.
The Keizer Little League Majors All Star team was runner-up in the 2012 District 7 All Star tournament.
The Little League All Star tournament is a unique opportunity for a team consisting of players ages 11-12 from a geographically restricted area to represent their respective communities in an international baseball tournament that culminates on national television in what is known as the Little League World Series.
This year marked the return of Keizer Little League to the finals in the District 7 tournament, which consisted of 10 teams from Salem, Corvallis, Mt. Angel, Turner and Albany.
“For some on the team this was their fourth trip to the All Star tournament and although they have competed well in the past, the team felt like it had something to prove,” said Jeremy Wentworth, team manager. “Everyone practiced with purpose and focused on getting better every day. They knew what it was going to take if they wanted to accomplish their goal and on Friday, July 13, the only thing that stood between them and the state tournament was a team from Sprague Little League.”
Unfortunately for the Keizer All Stars, that obstacle was too much to overcome that day. The game ended in a 12-2 loss.
Even when the team was down 8-1 in the fourth inning of the semi-finals, the members banded together and rallied with 12 unanswered runs to defeat Corvallis National and advance to the district championship. It was something of a repeat performance from the night prior. Facing elimination the team turned a 4-1 deficit into a 10-5 lead. However, in the bottom of the sixth, the lead was reduced to one and the Corvallis American team was threatening to tie the game, but a strikeout retired the side and Keizer won.
“Although their dream of playing on TV in the Little League World Series is over, the team can be proud to know that all of the hard work was worth it. The feeling of pride, sense of teamwork and accomplishment was obvious as they battled through six tough games in seven days,” Wentworth said. “Everyone contributed to the success of the team.”
Tough Yakima pitching and a few big hitting blows held the Volcanoes scoreless Saturday at home, with the Bears winning 4-0 before a Cancer Awareness Weekend crowd of 3,464.
Kendry Flores, Salem-Keizer’s starting pitcher, took the loss for a 1-2 record despite slightly lowering his season earned run average to 3.30, striking out four in his six innings, and allowing only four hits and one walk.
Daniel Watts, Yakima’s left-handed starting pitcher, did not allow a baserunner until the fourth inning.
The damage was done in the top of the fourth inning. With one out and Jimmy Comerota having doubled, Joe Loftus hit a home run over the left field fence.
In the bottom of the fourth Kentrell Hill led off with a bunt single, the first Volcano hit of the game. He became Salem-Keizer’s second baserunner, Dashenko Ricardo having reached first base in the third on an error by third baseman Mark Ginther. Matt Duffy then flew out to center fielder Danny Poma. With Chuckie Jones at bat, catcher Steven Rodriguez threw to second baseman Josh Parr, who nailed Hill trying to steal second. Jones then ended the inning with a fly to Poma.
The next baserunner of the game was the Volcanoes’ Stephen Branca, who doubled to right in the sixth with two out. Hill, however, hit a foul fly to first baseman Comerota to end the inning.
Armando Paniagua came in to relieve Flores at the start of the seventh. With two out and Ginther on first with a walk, Rodriguez doubled to drive Ginther home. Mike Lang reached first on an error by shortstop Duffy, with Rodriguez moving to third. Lefthander Steven Okert then came in to pitch and retired Kevin Medrano with a fly to right fielder Andrew Cain to end the top of the inning.
The Volcanoes threatened in the seventh. Duffy was hit by a pitch, Jones lined out to Medrano at short, and Joe Rapp walked. Mitchell Delfino forced out Rapp at second, with Duffy going to third. Rafael Rodriguez then grounded out to end the inning.
In the eighth, the Bears scored their last run. Parr singled to center and went to second as Comerota grounded out. Loftus singled Parr home.
Victor Capellan relieved starter Daniel Watts in the eighth. A submariner, he loaded the bases on a one-out walk to Ricardo, a single by Branca and a walk to Hill. Duffy hit a grounder that Capellan fielded; he fired home to force out Ricardo. Jones struck out to end the threat.
Ian Gardeck took the mound for the Volcanoes in the ninth. He allowed two singles, but neither runner got past second. In the bottom of the ninth, Capellan set down the Volcanoes in order.
Watts won his second game as a Bear and dropped his earned run average below 1.
“It’s hard if you don’t score,” Salem-Keizer manager Tom Trebelhorn said. “Flores pitched well. We just gave up a lot of runs out of the bullpen in this series.”
Flores, who has been steadily improving, said through an interpreter, teammate Gaspar Santiago, that he has been throwing the cutter more than he did previously.
Branca, who got two-thirds of the Volcanoes’ three hits and played well at second base, played for Tennessee Wesleyan College before starting this season with the Arizona League Giants. He said adjusting to the pitchers was more important than switching from a metal to a wood bat. He was a shortstop in college but said he liked playing second.
He is not related to Ralph Branca, the Brooklyn Dodgers pitcher best known for serving a home run pitch to the New York Giants’ Bobby Thomson to decide the 1951 National League championship.
R H E
YAK 000 200 110 4 9 1
S-K 000 000 000 0 3 1
W – Watts (2-1)
L – Flores (1-2)
HR – Yakima (Loftus)
Salem-Keizer picks up one win in tough week
By HERB SWETT For the Keizertimes
July 11: Yakima 8, Volcanoes 7
Salem-Keizer fought hard in the ninth inning, scoring five of its runs and ending up with more hits than visiting Yakima, but the Volcanoes came up a run short.
Yakima scored three runs in the first inning and one each in the third, seventh and eighth. After the Bears scored twice in the top of the ninth, the Volcanoes scored three before their first out and then another, but the next two batters were retired.
In the first, trailing 3-0, Kentrell Hill singled, advanced on a passed ball and a grounder, and scored on a single by Joe Rapp. In the second, Rafael Rodriguez hit his second home run of the season.
Stephen Branca singled to lead off the Volcanoes ninth. Hill doubled, and Michael Mergenthaler reached first on an error that scored Branca. Matt Duffy singled Hill home, and Rapp singled Mergenthaler home. After RJ Hively, who was to get a save, came in to pitch, he threw a wild pitch that scored Rapp. He then retired newcomer Mitchell Delfino and Dashenko Ricardo.
Yakima starter Blake Perry was the winning pitcher and Volcanoes starter Joe Biagini was the loser despite his 10 strikeouts.
July 12: Yakima 8, Volcanoes 5
The Volcanoes had a 3-0 lead through four innings, but the Bears scored five in the fifth.
Salem-Keizer almost caught up with a run in the fifth, but Yakima came back with three in the seventh, and all the Volcanoes could get after than was one in the eighth.
The first Volcano run came in the second inning, when a triple by Andrew Cain scored Joe Rapp. Rapp scored again in the fourth when, with the bases loaded, Cain hit into a force out. Sam Eberle then singled to drive in Mitchell Delfino.
Yakima’s five fifth-inning runs came on five hits, including a home run by Jimmy Comerota. The remaining Volcanoes runs were scored on ground outs. Doubles drove in each of the Bears’ last three runs.
Jose Jose was the winning pitcher in relief, and starter Joan Gregorio took the loss.
July 13: Volcanoes 6, Yakima 4
The Volcanoes led all the way, overcoming five extra-base hits for Yakima to none for Salem-Keizer.
Two of the Volcanoes’ runs came in the first inning. Kentrell Hill reached first base on an error and third on a single by Matt Duffy and scored on a sacrifice fly by Chuckie Jones. Duffy stole second, and Mitchell Delfino singled him home.
In the fourth, Andrew Cain singled, stole second and scored on a single by Dashenko Ricardo.
The Bears got their first run in the fifth on a bases-empty home run by Michael Lang. Yakima added two runs in the seventh and one in the eighth, but that was it. In the Volcanoes eighth, Stephen Yarrow ran for Delfino, who had singled. He advanced on a single and a walk and scored on a wild pitch.
Raymundo Montero was the winning pitcher, and Tyler Mizenko got his fifth save. Bears starter Alexander Carreras took the loss.
July 14: Yakima 10, Volcanoes 8
Each club went through six pitchers in a game that had Salem-Keizer ahead 6-2 after five innings.
The Volcanoes scored four runs in the second inning and Yakima eight in the sixth. The Bears had seven of their 17 hits in the sixth, which included three pitchers, three of Salem-Keizer’s four errors and the ejection of Volcano manager Tom Trebelhorn.
In the Volcano second, Rafael Rodriguez singled, stole second base, went to third on a single by Sam Eberle and scored when Kentrell Hill doubled. Matt Duffy walked, and Chuckie Jones singled Eberle and Hill home. Joe Rapp drove in Duffy with a single.
Jose Jose was the winning pitcher in relief, and RJ Hively had a save. Randall Zeigler took the loss in relief.
July 15: Everett 11, Volcanoes 2
Fourteen hits, including three home runs, gave visiting Everett the first game of the series.
Pitcher Joe Biagini blanked the AquaSox for the first three innings but gave up two runs in the fourth and two in the fifth before giving way to Franklin Noel after five. Noel gave up four more and Armando Paniagua three.
Taylor Ard, Patrick Kivlehan and Mike Zunino homered for Everett. There was one Salem-Keizer home run, by Rafael Rodriguez in the seventh with Mitchell Delfino on base.
The Volcanoes loaded the bases in the eighth and had runners on second and third in the ninth but could not cross the plate.
Starter Rusty Shellhorn was the winning pitcher.
July 16: Everett 6, Volcanoes 2
Salem-Keizer scored twice in the first inning and led until the seventh.
That was when the AquaSox, who had a run by then, scored three. Mike Zunino led off with his second home run of the game. Two singles, a sacrifice bunt, an RBI ground out and a passed ball followed.
In the Volcano second, Ryan Jones singled, reached second on a walk to Chuckie Jones and went to third after tagging on a fly. Rafael Rodriguez singled to score both baserunners.
Blake Hauser was the winning pitcher in relief. Starter Joan Gregorio took the loss for a 3-3 record.
Shaylee Williams and Kailey Doutt of Keizer, together with teammates Hailey Hmura and Nicole Niskanen of Salem, posted a time of 56.81 in the 4×100 relay to win the Oregon State Hershey’s Track and Field Championship at Hayward Field in Eugene on Saturday, July 7.
In an individual effort, Doutt, a Claggett Creek Middle School student, posted a time of 2:32.43 to win the girls 800-meter championship.
Bailey Hand won the 200 meter championship in the 11/12 year old division.
All five girls compete together on the same soccer team and decided as a group to take part in the track and field meet.
If their times hold up, the girls will represent the Pacific Northwest Region in the National Championships held in Hershey Pennsylvania in August.
A Filipino restaurant is coming soon to Keizer Station.
Adobo Republic, an independently-owned establishment, is taking 2,165 square feet next door to Gamestop. Owners plan to get up and running as quickly as possible, according to Jack Steinhauer, director of acquisitions and development for Donahue Schriber, which owns the shopping center.
“Keizer Station is excited and looking forward to bringing more food options to the area,” he said.
Salem Hospital has achieved the status as the safest in Oregon as rated by Consumer Reports. That’s quite an achievement considering there are more than 50 hospitals in the state.
The hospital, a division of Salem Health, received a rating of 63 out of a total of 100; the top rating in the country was 72. That’s quite a feather in the cap of hospital CEO Norm Gruber and his entire staff.
The public may well ask “What is the Consumer Reports rating and what does it mean to me?” According to Consumer Reports, the score is a “summary of six categories that relate to hospital safety” such as avoiding infections, avoiding readmissions, communications about medications and discharge, appropriate use of chest and abdominal scans, avoiding serious complications, and mortality.
Each area, scored against previous ratings, can earn one of five designations, from better to worse. A hospital would score a perfect 100 if it earned the highest possible score in all areas. The highest score in the current hospital ratings was 72.
For the 2010 calendar year Salem Hospital reported no bloodstream infections out of a total of 5,686 patient days. There were seven surgicalsite infections out of 1,150 surgical procdures. Infections are nothing to fool around with, doctors and nurses jump into action when they detect any infection.
Along with safety scores, the Consumer Reports rating also addresses patient experience, which comes from a survey of patients regarding hospital stays.
In none of the 19 scored areas did Salem Hospital rank at the lowest level, and it received the highest scores for avoiding bloodstream infections, doctor-patient communication, nurse-patient communication, use of electronic health records, and appropriate use of chest scanning.
For the public, the Consumer Reports rating offers confidence in their local hospital. We hear of tragic cases such as that of Rory Staunton, a 12-year old boy in New York who cut his arm while playing baseball and died three days later from septic shock brought on by sepsis. Indivdual health care emerencies are different, but the care should be as safe as possible.
That’s what Salem Hospital has strived for and that’s what they are accomplishing.
The Keizertimes won the most newspaper awards, 17 total, in its history at the annual Oregon Newspaper Publisher’s convention earlier this month.
Every staff member at the Keizertimes walked away with at least one first place award. The paper itself won third place in the general excellence category.
Managing Editor Jason Cox received first place honors for best coverage of business and economic issues for Tourism: worth the investment? and best headline writing (his fifth straight win). He shared first place honors with the staff for best page one design; and, with Eric A. Howald for best enterprise reporting (a six-part series about Keizer’s big box retailer debate). Associate Editor Eric Howald won first place for best feature story and best writing, both for Butual truths of the derby sisterhood, as well as two other first place for writing.
Andrew Jackson, the paper’s production director, won a first place award and two second place awards for his advertising work.
Lately, the number of political cartoons mocking Congressional Republicans has been very unbalanced.
On June 22, after Obama’s executive order giving amnesty to children of illegal immigrants, a cartoon appeared criticizing Congress as opposing “Anything Obama Proposes” because they’d voted down his “Dream Act,” which was largely the same thing. For the record, that’s the way the Constitution set it up. A two-part Congress must pass laws which are then sent to the President for approval or rejection. It’s not a president’s prerogative to make his own laws if Congress doesn’t do his bidding.
Then on June 29, the largest cartoon showed voters having contempt “for” Congress, portrayed as the GOP elephant, for holding Attorney General Holder in contempt “of” Congress. Agree or disagree, this power has been a Congressional prerogative for hundreds of years now.
Finally, on July 6, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s upholding of ObamaCare, the powers-that-be at the Keizertimes couldn’t seem to contain their partisanship showcasing no less than four cartoons ridiculing Republican reactions to the decision.
Being a retired public school history teacher, many times students wanted me to tell them how I voted or where I stood on issues. I told them politely, “It’s not my job to tell you how to vote or for whom to vote. I urge you to hear the best arguments from the various sides and then make your own informed decision based upon your values.” Likewise, the editorial board at the Keizertimes would do well to restrain their own political views and put a little more balance in our local paper, especially as regards their selection of political cartoons. Your readers deserve no less.