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Upkeep – Skate park to get landscaping buffer

The street side portion of the skate park will receive street trees and vegetation to buffer the facility. The Silverton City Council approved the plan at its Aug. 5 meeting.
The street side portion of the skate park will receive street trees and vegetation to buffer the facility. The Silverton City Council approved the plan at its Aug. 5 meeting.

By James Day

Street trees and landscaping will be added to the skate park on Main Street to help buffer the popular recreation site from the rest of the neighborhood.

At its Aug. 5 meeting the City Council agreed to plant seven trees and other landscaping in the planter strip on the skate park side of Main Street.

The city will pay the cost of the project, said City Manager Ron Chandler, although the budget has not yet been established.

The skatepark has been upgraded in recent months with additional runs, a bench and a plaque that honors founder Jason Franz. All of that work was paid for by community donations. Skate park backers still are working on a plan to add lights to the facility.

In other council action during the four-hour session at the Silverton High library:

• A 5-1 decision by the city Planning Commission to approve a one-lot annexation off of Edison Road NE was overturned on a similar 5-1 vote.

The council decision directs city staff to come back with an ordinance to reject the annexation plan at its Sept. 12 meeting. The complicated land-use decision stems from a request by property owners Al and Sheila Skomial to bring their property on Edison Heights Lane into the city. The key challenge for the Skomials is a failing well, which does not deliver the required water flow and also has higher than healthy levels of bacteria.

Councilors and members of the public expressed concern about the application because the parcel is outside the urban growth boundary. Also, the annexation and the water hookups would cost the Skomials more than $20,000. That bill would have been $30,000 had the property owners annexed at the time they built their house.

• An item approved as part of the consent agenda will implement an amnesty program for Municipal Court-ordered traffic fines and fees. The city has a backlog of $1.5 million in delinquent fines and fees. The program, which would affect fines and fees issued before Sept. 1, 2021, requires defendants to provide 50% of the balance owed to qualify.

• An appropriation of $32,000 was approved that will pay for repair work on the stone columns at the entrance to Coolidge McClaine Park. Chandler said the work likely will begin in September.

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