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No Decision at Budget Committee Meeting

By Chris Curtis

EUGENE, Ore. — Concerns over public safety brought a full house to the Lane County Budget Committee Meeting on Thursday evening.

Thirty-seven citizens spoke up and those voices were heard loud and clear.

“One thing we ask is look at everything line by line, really look at this. There is a lot of money at stake in a lot of different reserve accounts,” said Jim Steiner, who attended the meeting.

“They were passionate and committed this evening — to law enforcement, human services and animal control. I am glad they all showed up. I really am,” said Committee Member Denis Hijmans.

“You know it shows what a lot of citizens are concerned about and I am encouraged by that. I am encouraged by the budget committee tonight. It is looking positive for us, and I couldn’t feel better about it,” said Lane County Sheriff Tom Turner.

The committee is considering moving $1.6 million to the jail, which would fund 96 beds.

Any encouragement was quickly put to rest when the budget committee looked ahead.

“If we pass the budget this year, what happens next year?” the committee said.

The Budget Committee will meet again on Tuesday, May 22 at Harris Hall.

The public is invited to attend.

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