Did You Know?
Items described on this page cover a variety of subjects concerning Curry County that most citizens may not be aware of and should be. They are listed in no particular order. A online link or attached document will normally be included so the reader can investigate further if they wish. Some of the items have resulted in additional costs to taxpayers amounting to millions of dollars over the last ten years.
Did you know in 2008 the Curry County board of commissioners created a Blue Ribbon Committee (yes another committee) in another attempt
to convince citizens to approve additional taxes for law enforcement? The county order creating the committee is number 12959.
Taxpayers paid nearly $100,000 for a report in 2009 as a result of committee recommendations. No city or county staff time is
included in the report cost.
Did you know in March 2012 county commissioners requested health insurance proposals from several insurance providers
apparently in the hope of obtaining the same or better insurance coverage for county employees at reduced premiums?
After receiving several proposals commissioners voted 2 to 1 to continue with the current agent and policies - Pilot article
3/31/12 "County sticks with current health insurance firm".
Did you know for the four fiscal years 2007/2008 to 2010/2011 Curry County paid nearly $6 million dollars into the Oregon Public
Employees Retirement System (PERS)? The employee "Pick-up" (6% of gross wages) totaled approximately $1.9 million. The
employer portion was approximately $3.9 million. For a breakdown provided by the county click
Did you know in January 2006 Curry County Commissioners La Bonté, Schafer, Brown and the Sheriff signed a contract addendum
with the Teamsters Union effective February 1, 2006 requiring the county to create a medical savings account for every
participating employee? The county was obligated thereafter to contribute $50 per month into the savings account on behalf
of each participating employee. To view the agreement click
Did you know in December 2008 Curry County Commissioners Nowlin, La Bonté, Schafer and the Sheriff signed a contract with the
Teamsters Union effective July 1, 2008 agreeing to additional insurance language which said that should the county negotiate lower
premiums with a different insurance carrier for comparable medical, dental and vision insurance, any savings the county might receive
would be deposited into each employee's medical savings account? What was the point of requesting health insurance proposals
in March 2012? View the contract
Did you know that in the fiscal year 2000-2001 all county elected officials, all road department employees, all employees represented
by the Teamsters Union and most non-represented employees were required to pay their respective 6 percent PERS contribution?
To view the document click
Did you know that in the fiscal year 2001-2002 Curry County Commissioners Schafer, La Bonté and Schaaf in a massive conflict
of interest unanimously approved obligating taxpayers to "pick-up" their 6 percent PERS contribution in addition to the respective
6 percent PERS contribution for all elected officials, all road department employees, all employees represented by the Teamsters
Union and most non-represented employees? To view the document click
Did you know that newly elected county commission chair Smith was reported in a Curry Coastal Pilot article October 6, 2012 stating
he believes the county needs to have elected officials pay their fair share of their retirement and health plans, as it is the state
pension program that is most bogging down the state's budget? Smith was later quoted saying "This is not sustainable.
When is it going to stop?" Clearly not with commission chair Smith at the helm. To read the article click here.
Did you know the recently formed Curry Political Action Committee (PAC) supporting the law enforcement tax levy has received nearly
$10,000 in contributions as of April 15, 2013? Over 80 percent of contributions came from three businesses. The largest
contributor, Smith River Rancheria in California has contributed $4,325. Rogue Federal Credit Union (Formally Chetco Federated
Credit Union) is second with $2,500 followed by C & K Market (Ray's Food Place & Shop Smart) with $1,000. For a list
of all contributions and expenditures click here.
Did you know citizens may request to receive email notice of all county public meetings pursuant to ORS 192.640? Curry
County Commissioners and County Counsel intentionally removed citizens from this notification list in October 2011 and finally
after repeated requests, placed the citizen's names back on the email list late 2012. As recently as March 2013 county
staff have ignored suggestions to advertise via the news media, county website, etc. that citizens may sigh up for these public notifications.
Those interested in being placed on the notice list should send an email to: BOC_Office@co.curry.or.us and
request your name be added to the list.
Did you know that Municipal bankruptcy under Chapter 9 of the federal Bankruptcy Code is permitted in about half of the states but
not in Oregon? A municipality must be authorized by state law for file for bankruptcy. Oregon State Representative Bruce
Hanna 7th District has introduced legislation allowing the use of Chapter 9 Bankruptcy in the current 2013 legislative session.
The one-page bill (HB 2924) has not received a warm reception from legislators who would prefer to increase your taxes vs. being fiscally
responsible. Oregon State Senator Jeff Kruse was on record stating he was one of the sponsors of a bill to allow for
bankruptcy proceedings this session but when asked for the bill number, responded "We are still gathering signatures..." Translation:
The bill had not been introduced at that time and, as yet has not been introduced. For a good local article titled "Federal
bankruptcy not allowed for Oregon counties" click . For the
one-page summary of House Bill 2924 click
Did you know that the City of Brookings has an Urban Renewal District that was created without a vote of the people
and is estimated to divert approximately $5.4 million dollars alone from the Brookings 17C School Tax District into
the Urban Renewal District between 2013 and 2028? It will also divert (estimate) around $6 million dollars from the Brookings
City Tax District and nearly $1 million from the county Tax District during that same period. The current City of
Brookings budget for 2012/2013 (page 52) estimates tax revenue given up by the various Taxing Districts to the Urban Renewal
District at about $500,000 this year. To learn more about the City of Brookings Urban Renewal Plan and a list of all the Tax
Districts that will contribute to the kitty click here and go to page 18 of the report. For a summary of what
the Urban Renewal District is click
Did you know that the City of Gold Beach is close to finalizing the formation of an Urban Renewal District and Plan similar to that
of Brookings. The Urban Renewal Report and Plan can be found on the City of Gold Beach website here. Page 26 of the Report
shows the estimated tax revenue which totals approximately $11 million dollars that will be diverted from the various taxing
districts into the Urban Renewal Agency. The impact on the Curry County School District is estimated exceed $4 million
dollars. The Gold Beach Urban Renewal District/Agency is also created without a vote of the people.