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Agenda & Minutes

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Mayor & Council (View All)

City Council Study Session Agenda & Minutes

Thursday, April 07, 2016

7:00 PM
Medford City Hall, Medford Room
411 West Eighth Street, Third Floor
Medford, Oregon
1.     Tiny Houses

7:00 PM
Medford City Hall, Medford Room

411 West Eighth Street, Third Floor
Medford, Oregon

The Medford City Council Study Session was called to order at 7:00 p.m. in the Medford Room of the Medford City Hall on the above date with the following members and staff present:
Mayor Gary Wheeler; Councilmembers Clay Bearnson, Daniel Bunn, Chris Corcoran, Dick Gordon, Tim Jackle, Eli Matthews, Kevin Stine*, Michael Zarosinski*
City Manager Pro Tem Bill Hoke; City Attorney Lori Cooper; City Recorder Karen Spoonts; Planning Director Jim Huber
Heather Everett and Rich Hansen from the Homeless Task Force
Tiny Houses
Rich Hansen, member of the Homeless Task Force, spoke regarding Medford’s homelessness problem and noted there is a significant number of homeless camps along the greenway which are unsightly, unsanitary and unhealthy.
*Councilmember Zarosinski arrived.
Heather Everett, Chair of the Homeless Task Force and employee of Rogue Retreat, spoke regarding the Hope Village project.
*Councilmember Stine arrived.
Ms. Everett introduced those in attendance representing the Hope Village Steering Committee which has been in the valley since 1988. The committee’s goal is to address barriers that cause homelessness and assist with finding homeless people permanent housing.  She spoke of the success of a tiny home community in Eugene.
Medford’s Hope Village
  • Would be similar to Eugene’s village
  • Self-governed with case management, education on homelessness prevention and time limits for residents
  • The average stay at Rogue Retreat is 18 months
  • Rogue Retreat website is raising money for Hope Village project
  • Donations are needed to purchase trailers
  • Rogue Retreat hopes to sell kits that people can buy to assemble a tiny home
  • Only those who want to get out of homelessness
  • A curfew will be in place and residents are expected to be there
  • There will be limited parking; perhaps only two or three spaces
  • An eviction process will be created, based on the rules
  • Backgrounds will only be checked for sexual crimes
  • May be provided with a coach, if needed
  • Tenants will be determined by a steering committee
  • Rogue Retreat will file a formal application with the Planning Department
    • Conditional use permits and revising Code language could take a year
    • Eugene went through a Conditional Use Permit process
    • Planning Commission may need some criteria to reach a decision
    • City Attorney Lori Cooper noted this is a conceptual idea and a land use appeal may be filed
    • Planning Director Jim Huber believes this may be a permitted use to lease the property; if not, the Code could be amended to make it conditional
Drug Use
  • Tenants’ responsibility to eliminate drugs in the village
  • A resident can be under the influence in their house, but causing problems for other tenants is a rule violation
  • There will be no drug testing, but no illegal drugs are allowed onsite
  • One acre parcel is the ideal size for this plan
  • Rogue Retreat would like to purchase the property
  • Ideal location would have access to bus line and services as well as be centrally located
  • Eugene recommends working with Medford to use surplus property
    • Councilmember Bunn requested a copy of Eugene’s land use plan and of Medford’s surplus property list
  • Proposed location is centrally located in a commercial location with no neighborhoods nearby
    • Easy access to the bus lines
    • Walking distance to St. Vincent or Gospel Mission
    • 20 residents expected
    • Security slats in fencing for privacy
    • Proposed site plan for village was shown
    • Should be seen as a well-designed and attractive site
    • City and Rogue Retreat should consider the location and its impact on surrounding businesses
    • Opposition has been received regarding the mental health issues of the homeless
    • Randall Theatre management would be invited to meetings and Mr. Hansen indicated he would also like to meet with the surrounding neighbors to discuss the process
  • Rogue Retreat prefers a one-year lease with the City and the neighbors
  • Eviction could be a concern
  • Mayor Wheeler requested a copy of Eugene’s lease agreement
The meeting adjourned at 8:22 p.m.
Karen M. Spoonts, MMC
City Recorder


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