Transportation System Plan – The technical advisory committee met to discuss the most recent update to the transportation system plan. We have many volunteer committee members that have gave their time very freely for this effort, and I really appreciate their time. You can add your input here.
COVID 19 – There will be testing events next week with no symptoms required.
Monday, October 12th COVID Testing Event in Nyssa
Wednesday, October 14th COVID Testing Event in Ontario
Planning – We held a PDAC for the property the multi-unit development is being built on that went very well. This is the same property which the council held the public comment for at the council meeting. We also had a follow up meeting with Jacobs to talk about the water and wastewater capacity at that location.
Grants – We met with our grant writing team in Washington DC. They feel they have enough information to begin discussions with the Economic Development Administration for funding to complete the SE 2nd Construction project from East Idaho to 16th. I spoke with several people about getting more letters of support.
PERS – The contribution levels came out today for the PERS. It’s not a great surprise because we had the estimates earlier this year. Tier 1 & 2 went from 32.82% to 35.65%. The OPSORP employees went from 22.60% to 26.32% and the Police and Fire Tier 1 & 2 went from 27.23% to 30.68%. This will be for the 21-22 fiscal year and the 22-23 fiscal year. That includes contributions to our side account.
Coronavirus Relief Funds – We have a lot of projects to get going on with the Coronavirus Relief Funds. We got underway with them today. I’ll be in contact with the senior center next week to see what we can do for them.
Monday began with a preconstruction meeting of all the partners regarding the continuous improvement project at the airport. A NOTAM was called for the construction as taxiway lights will be off during the time of construction.
The military jet that is on display at the airport was moved from the static display location to make room for construction. It was quite an ordeal moving an F-4 Phantom fighter jet.
Follow up sessions are being set with the fire marshal to review compliance reports made on each chemical applicator’s site on the field regarding safety and hazmat concerns.
Staff conducted the annual inspection of the Boys and Girls Club in Ontario. Chief virtually attended a PDAC on Wednesday for a 70-unit apartment, the Rural Board meeting on Thursday, and the OVFA Business meeting on Tuesday.
The Malheur County Burn ban will be lifted October 12.
This month staff will participate in the Ontario Smoke Detector Program. Citizens can call (541) 881-3216 to schedule appointments.
10/5 - Rescue-1 was paged to a fire alarm but was cancelled enroute. 10/6 - Rescue 1 responded to a “gas smell” on the 100 block SW 4th Avenue. After checking the area, a leaking propane tank was identified, the leak was stopped, and the scene was cleared.
Recruitments started for the positions of Police Officer (Entry/Lateral) and Airport Manager. These recruitments will run until 11/30/20 and 11/15/20 respectively.
Oct 5th- Chief Romero participated in the Malheur County local public safety coordinating council meeting. The council discussed a variety of regional crime concerns and methods for a collaborative response to the issues discussed. One key topic was a recent change in gun registration protocol. Local agencies will now assist with this process versus the Oregon State Police.
Oct 6th- Chief Romero authored staff reports and contracts for three contractors that will be assisting the City of Ontario with the nuisance abatement process. Two will serve as hearing officers and one will provide abatement services.
Oct 8th-Chief Romero attended an online demonstration for the I-Worq’s System being considered by the city for automation services of all the department’s forms and case management systems. Chief Romero feels the platform will serve the needs of the Ontario Police Department’s Code Enforcement Division.
October 9th-Chief Romero has made his final selection for an eleven (11) member Chief’s Advisory Council and will publicly announce his selection through the OPD Facebook on his October 2020 “Minute with the Chief” Commentary. The Chief reports that he received a diverse group of applicants and is excited to start working with this newly developed community governance team.
Oct 7th- This week OPD was able to attend a community policing event. OPD was joined by the Oregon State Police at the Brookdale Senior Living Center for a socially distanced drive thru “Coffee with a Cop” event. The event was hosted by Brookdale on this National Coffee with a Cop day. Great Community support expressed by the staff and residence of the Brookdale community.
Oct 7th- OPD shared in an outdoor “Pizza Party” event with the Ontario Boys and Girls Club. OPD provided pizza and candy to the kids and staff at the BGC to express their support for the staff, programs, and youth that attend the BGC. OPD looks to build strong bonds with our area youth to maintain ongoing and future mutual trust between the police and our community.
This week, OPD Code Enforcement worked on developing a temporary foster program for dogs, due to the current impasse between the city and local kennel service that the city had been doing business with. Kennel Services have been suspended due to COVID 19 and pending contract development.
CEO’s worked on 4 Nuisance abatement cases that will be forwarded for formal administrative hearings.
CEO monitored traffic conditions this week on SW 4th Avenue, via the OPD Speed Trailer.
Crews continue crack sealing activities. The handrail for the skate park restrooms is taking shape. Staff worked on improving the road to the Bench Reservoir.
The pilot test of the Titus Twister at the Malheur Lift Station has been discontinued due to visible fats, oils, and grease accumulating on the surface of Waste Treatment Lagoon.
The water treatment plant is running well, and the reservoirs are full. Staff continued cleaning drying beds. The water reservoir at SRCI had a pressure transducer fail and SRCI staff requested help from Jacobs to respond to the problem.
In preparation for the bio-solids removal project, Fruitland Electric was at Waste Treatment Thursday disconnecting electrical service to three of the four rows of floating aerators in Lagoon #1. This will allow for the rows of aerators to be moved to the east end of the lagoon, so they won’t interfere with the solid’s removal dredge.
Parks and Cemeteries
Crews are focused on mowing and trimming.
Staff participated in a preliminary PDAC for a 70-unit apartment complex. Staff also reviewed a request by Project Ruby about locating a production facility in Ontario as well as the Goodfellow and 5th Avenue improvements.
TSP Open House
The City of Ontario has developed a new online open house to gather public feedback on active transportation improvements and a new streetscape plan for East Idaho Avenue. Multiple biking and walking routes have been selected for improvements and a concept design has been developed or East Idaho Avenue, but we need to hear from you! Please take just a few minutes and visit the online open house (open until 10/9) and give us your feedback. Visit the open house here.
Chamber AV Upgrade – I received the third bid for the AV setup in the Council Chamber. I’ll bring a recommendation to Council for award on Thursday.
Branding Implementation – Peter has been working on implementation of our new brand. Final presentation is coming to Council on Thursday and then we will launch with your approval.
JOINT NEACT/SEACT – The two Eastern Area Commission on Transportation met on Thursday.
Airport Planning Application –We officially submitted the Airport Planning grant application this week.
Grants – Letters continue to come in from businesses for the EDA Grant. The mayor organized a meeting between him, President Dana Young, myself, and Andy Bentz to discuss the rangeland management program and possible grants.
Highway Lighting – I got another estimate for the lighting of the overpass. It was considerably lower. The most recent estimate I got was at about $30k which is what I was hoping for.
TVCC Aviation Program – I continued discussion with TVCC Administration about the Aviation program.
Another CDBG Funding – Euvalcree was awarded the CDBG grant that they will be administering for us for the micro-business enterprises. It is for $50,000.
The 105 acres of mowing at the airport was completed this week. This should help immensely with the problem of blowing weeds. It is also bringing in comments of how nice it looks.
Dan Beaubien and I attended the Airport Committee on Monday and discussed fueling procedures as well as other topics at the airport. An additional work session meeting will take place next Monday, October 12th to finalize a fueling solution.
Precision approach path indicator lights have been repaired and put back into service this week. Also, a runway light and two taxiway lights which were destroyed by an aircraft upon landing.
The BLM’s single engine air tanker planes and spotter plane left this week for the year. They went to Utah, Arizona, and Colorado.
Pre-meetings are happening this week and next for capital improvement projects at the airport. Groundbreaking should begin next week to build a taxiway and hold apron at the airport.
Staff inspected Treasure Valley Cannabis and a neighboring building on 10/1/20.
This month is Breast Cancer Awareness month. You will see our staff in pink to show our dedication and support.
9/28- Rescue-1 was contacted concerning a garbage can fire at Beck-Kiwanis Park. The reported can was extinguished as crews arrived. 9/29- Crews responded to a fire at a homeless camp. Crews also responded to an arcing light pole. When Rescue-1 responded, crews noted sagging wires. Idaho Power was contacted.
Sept 28th- Chief Romero talked with an Ontario Real Estate Association agent to discuss crime prevention strategies for Ontario’s multi-unit parcels. Chief Romero presented a program known as the “Crime Free Multi-Housing Program” that focuses on crime reduction strategies for multi-unit rental housing and subsidized housing. Recent crime incidents at local apartment buildings were the origin of this community concern.
Sept 29th-Chief Romero hosted the regional director from the Idaho-Oregon High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA) agency to discuss a future plan for funding and assisting Malheur County law enforcement agencies with combatting the illicit drug epidemic in the region.
Sept 29-Chief Romero attended a board meeting for the Ontario Boys and Girls Club. Chief Romero has been selected to serve as a co-chair for the BGC’s sustainability committee. Chief Romero hopes to increase the level of crime prevention education and youth activities offered at the BGC.
Sept 30- OPD conducted its second annual “Feed the Veterans” breakfast at the Ontario American Legion POST. Following social distancing protocols and care, OPD was able to feed about 20 area veterans and some OPD staff that dropped by to exchange mutual support for each-others service to our communities and country.
Sept 30-Chief Romero attended a community development planning meeting in the City of Baker. Chief Romero and other Ontario Civic group and business leaders were invited to serve as guest presenters and consultants for Baker City stakeholders and city officials. The topic presented was the launching of youth outreach programs and programs for serving the special needs and vulnerable population. Ontario has captured the attention of other areas for the great collaborative work that is taking place in the areas of outreach and community partnerships.
Oct 1- Chief Romero served as a guest speaker at the FRCC for Project Dove and spoke about OPD’s role and support in combatting the crime of Domestic Violence. Chief Romero provided educational tips on how the community can help reduce incidents of DV and how to effectively report DV to law enforcement agencies.
Chief Romero began review of applications for the newly formed Chief’s Advisory Council. He anticipates a 9-council member selection completed by October 9, 2020.
OPD activities remained steady but OPD is glad to report that there were no significant crimes or incidents this week. OPD’s proactive efforts focused on some drug related complaints and recent vandalism (graffiti) that popped up throughout various parts of the city. It is believed that the same suspect is responsible for the vandalism. OPD is following some promising leads for identifying the suspect.
CEO’s met with Chief Romero and the city’s contracted “Hearing Officer” to draft and finalize contracts for the city’s current hearing officer and a newly selected second hearing officer.
CEO conducted directed enforcement efforts in the southeast section of the city. Many of the contacts were follow-ups from previous warnings and notices as well as trying to identify chronic violators.
This week’s enforcement focus was on illegal parking, specifically non-functioning vehicles that are left on public roadways.
Crews spent the week crack sealing West Idaho Avenue.
A pilot test of the Titus Twister that began last week at the Malheur Lift Station has removed about 95% of the fats, oils, and grease from the wet well. However, those waste products appear to be moving downstream to the wastewater treatment plant and congealing on the surface of Lagoon #1. Staff will continue to monitor the performance and results throughout the pilot test period.
The water treatment plant is running well, and the reservoirs are full. Staff worked on cleaning out the drying beds. Sodium Hydroxide feed lines are being to break down. A solution is being pursued.
Arsenic sampling was performed at the wastewater treatment plant this week. Representatives of Synagro were on site Tuesday reviewing the scope of the bio solids removal work. They still intend to mobilize to Ontario the week of October 12th.
Parks and Cemeteries
A large new mower is back in service. Bids are being solicited for irrigation system upgrades at Evergreen Cemetery.
The second phase of the SE 2nd Street project is scheduled to wrap up this week and Phase III is scheduled to begin.
Staff are working with Oregon Department of Corrections to identify the amount and type of sulfate containing cleaning agents are being used at SRCI. Jacobs is recommending that using lower sulfate cleaners will reduce the amount of hydrogen sulfide being generated in the wastewater collection being received from SRCI. Hydrogen Sulfide is a prime suspect in objectionable odors emanating from the waste treatment plant as well as very corrosive the collections system infrastructure
Each week, City Manager Adam Brown brings you up to date on the comings and goings of the City of Ontario in The Weekend Update.