Polk County News Polk County Itemizer-Observer • March 15, 2017 3A Dallas hiring for economic dev Bond: Will pay City interviews seven economic development director candidates for new station By Jolene Guzman The Itemizer-Observer DALLAS — Adding to the focus-on-the-economy theme in Dallas in 2017, the city is looking for someone to fill a new position: economic development director. Creating the economic development post has been a lengthy process, said City Manager Ron Foggin. “The city has actually been talking about it for a long time,” Foggin said. “I’ve been talking about it for the last couple of years.” Last year, the city hired an economic development consultant, Greg Ellis, on a part-time basis, working about 10 hours per week. Ellis served for about a year. “With Greg retiring, it was clear to me that we needed to take another step for- ward,” Foggin said. The city of Dallas posted the full-time position last month, with a salary range of $5,753 to $8,186 per month. For the remainder of the fiscal year, which ends June 30, the salary will be paid for with what was bud- geted for a part-time eco- nomic development con- sultant post that has been vacant since the beginning of the year. The city is conducting ini- tial interviews with seven of the 12 total applicants to narrow the candidates to those the city wants to take a closer look at. Foggin said the person who gets the job will first be focused on business reten- tion and helping businesses that want to expand. “Then looking to see what we can do to entice busi- nesses to come here,” Fog- gin said. “One of those (fo- cuses) is how do we expand our position in wine coun- try. One of the council prior- ities for the last few years has been there, so I think that would be a key thing for this position to focus on.” Foggin said the hiring co- incides with the Rural Devel- opment Initiative roadmap process — now named the Dallas Vitality Connection — and the Dallas City Council and Economic Development Commission support creat- ing the position. He added that with the position being in demand for so long, people may ex- pect to see a quick return on the investment. Foggin said he will have his own goals for progress, but thinks it could be more of a marathon than a sprint to- ward development. “Setting realistic expecta- tions for this person is going to be really important,” Fog- gin said. “It’s not going to be immediate, overnight suc- cess. This isn’t instant rice where we just add hot water and wait five minutes.” To begin with, Foggin said the new director will contin- ue to work on what Ellis started. “Greg did a really nice job and really got us headed down a good path for eco- nomic development,” Fog- gin said. “This will be a nice, strong step forward.” Golf Club wants inside Dallas boundaries By Jolene Guzman The Itemizer-Observer DALLAS — The owners of Dallas Golf Club are asking for the nine-hole executive course to be moved within the city’s urban growth boundary. Planning commissions from both the city and Polk County have recom- mended their respective boards adopt the expansion. Both governments must approve the proposal. The Dallas City Council and Polk County Board of Commissioners will hold a joint hearing on the application. That hearing is tentatively set for April 3 at 5:30 p.m. in the Dallas Civic Center, 945 SE Jefferson St. “It allows the board of commissioners and the council to hear the same infor- mation at the same time from essential- ly the same people,” said Jason Locke, the city’s community development di- rector. Dallas Golf Club, 11875 Orrs Corner Road, sits just outside the line marking the Dallas city limits and the urban growth boundary. Locke said this is an “applicant-dri- ven urban growth boundary expan- sion,” and the course owner would like access to city water service and land use rules that would allow for improve- LUKAS EGGEN/Itemizer-Observer file Dallas Golf Club is a nine-hole course. ments on the property. He said there’s no plan for using the property for anything but a golf course. “They don’t intend to change it,” Locke said. “One of the reasons for doing it is to upgrade some of the an- cillary uses, like the club house and the pro shop, and get rid of some of the buildings that kind of sketchy that are out there now.” The nearly 42-acre property is zoned exclusive farm use, but is under a con- ditional use permit to operate as a golf course. The conditional use permit doesn’t allow for improvements. “They are pretty severely limited and they can’t get city water,” Locke said. Dallas’ Planning Commission rec- ommended the council approve the application with three conditions: That the upon annexation to the city of Dal- las (a separate process), the property be rezoned “parks and open space.” that owner have an agreement with the city to dedicate land for the city’s Rick- reall Creek Trail; and build the trail through the property within 180 days of land use approval for improvements on the property. In addition to extending the Rickre- all Creek Trail, the proposal would ben- efit the city by adding to its inventory of parks and open space, which will be needed as the city grows, Locke said. The Polk County Planning Commis- sion held a public hearing and recom- mended approval on Thursday. In other business, the council: • Unanimously passed a resolution allowing parking on the east side of Wyatt Street near Kingsborough Park. “When the park was initially devel- oped, the plan was for diagonal parking along the west side,” said Councilor Bill Hahn. “This never occurred, so property owners have discussed it with the city.” Continued from Page 1A The bond would pay for replacing the district’s aging Rickreall station, adding sleeping quarters and a classroom. A long-standing goal, the Salt Creek station would be built. “It will decrease our re- sponse times to Highway 22 incidents and potentially increase volunteers in the Salt Creek area,” said Chief Fred Hertel. Old fire engines and emergency vehicles will be replaced. “Our current fleet is at or nearing the end of its emer- gency service life,” Hertel said. “We are starting to see reliability issues and in- crease in upkeep costs.” Communications equip- ment and breathing units required for firefighters to enter burning structures would be purchased with the bond. “Without that equip- ment, we will no longer be able to make entry into a burning structure for res- cue for firefighting activi- ties,” Hertel said. He added, if the district became a “non-entry fire department,” residents likely would see an increase in insurance costs. The bond would cost dis- trict residents 69 cents per $1,000 of assessed value on properties. Board member Rod Wat- son said if nothing changes in a few years, the district will be running in the red. “We are not able to maintain the service that we already have,” Watson said. West Valley Housing Authority will hold their Work Session Meeting on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 beginning at 11:30 a.m. at 204 SW Walnut in Dallas, Oregon. The Regular Meeting will be held on Wednesday, March 22, 2017 at 1:00 p.m. at 204 SW Walnut in Dallas, Oregon. An Executive Session pursuant to ORS 192.660 will be held immediately following the Regular Meeting, if required. Agenda for the meeting is posted on the Housing Authority website at www.wvpha.org. The location for the meeting is handicapped accessible. Please advise the West Valley Housing Authority if you need any special accommodations to attend the meeting. For information, please call 503-623-8387, TDD 1-800-735-2900. 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