Local News That Matters

UPDATES: Salem wants young people's input on future growth

April 20, 2021 at 12:29pm

AGENDA: Commissioners to consider fines for parking along Little North Fork

Colm Willis, Marion County commissioner talks with former commissioner Sam Brentano on May 5, 2020. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

The Marion County Board of Commissioners meets Wednesday to consider approving amendments to intergovernmental agreements, contracts for recycling used tires and adopting an ordinance on trespassing and littering along a popular river access.


In March, commissioners approved an order that restricted public access to North Fork, Gates Hill and Pioneer Roads and prohibited access to the county right of way on the Little North Fork Santiam River after extensive wildfire damage.

If people are caught parking in the county right of way along those roads or littering, they could face a fine from $440 to $2,000 under a proposal being considered by commissioners Wednesday.

Commissioners will consider an amendment to an intergovernmental agreement with Polk County for communicable disease control, increasing the contract by $152,745 for a total of $186,298.

They will also consider incoming funds from the Oregon Health Authority for Covid monitoring and home visits through June 30. An additional $7 million will increase the contract total to $18.8 million.

Commissions will consider approving a contract with United Disposal Services to recycle used tires from the North Marion Recycling and Transfer Station at a cost of $150,000 until June 30, 2026.

They will also consider approving a contract with Capitol Recycling and Disposal to recycle used tires from the Salem Keizer Recycling and Transfer Station at a cost of $300,000 until June 30, 2026. 

How to participate: The meeting starts at 9 a.m. in the Senator Hearing Room at 555 Court Street N.E. People can view the meeting on YouTube

-Saphara Harrell

April 20, 2021 at 10:56am

Salem area unemployment rate remains virtually unchanged

A construction crew works on the Salem Public Library on March 24, 2021. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter) 

The jobless rate for the Salem area barely budged last month.

In March, the unemployment rate for the Salem area was 5.8%, down slightly from February’s 5.9%. The rate for the Salem area tracks with the rest of the state, which saw the unemployment rate decrease at 6% from 6.1%.

In the Salem area, the hard-hit leisure and hospitality industry added 1,900 jobs, construction added 400. State and local government together added 500 jobs. 

Retail trade saw a loss of 300 jobs, manufacturing 200 jobs and business services 200 jobs. 

-Jake Thomas

April 20, 2021 at 9:35am

Young people, Salem wants to know how you think the city should grow

Dressed in a mini cap and gown, Luis Torres, 18 months, greets mother Lupe following her graduation during the Early College High School and Roberts Teen Parent Program combined commencement ceremony at Sprague High School on Thursday, August 6. (Amanda Loman/Salem Reporter)

Salem wants young people’s input on the future of the city. It’s asking Salemites between 14 and 22 years old to join one of three listening sessions this month as part of "Our Salem."

Salem is in the process of overhauling its comprehensive plan, guiding how the city will grow in the coming decades.

At the forums, city planners will discuss how to make Salem more livable, equitable, affordable, and safe. There will be polls and question and answer time. Everyone who participates will have a chance to win a prize.

The hourlong forums will be held on April 24 at 11 a.m., April 26 at 7 p.m. and April 29 at 3:30 p.m.

Sign up here for one of the three events. A waiver is required to join.

-Saphara Harrell