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Measure 37 disputes won't need appraisals.

Byline: COUNTY BEAT By Matt Cooper The Register-Guard

Got a gripe with how land-use rules hurt your property value?

Now you won't automatically have to pay for an appraisal to make your case.

The Lane County commissioners this week decided they will no longer require property appraisals from people who want to use Measure 37 to get relief from land-use rules or compensation for lost property value, said Kent Howe, planning director.

The board wasn't getting the information it needed from the appraisals. Instead, applicants must show "competent statements of evidence" that land-use rules hurt property value, Howe said.

That could be work done by appraisers (but not necessarily with an appraisal), tax-assessment information or analysis of comparable sales in the area. Or the board may require an appraisal, Howe said.

On one hand, the decision means people who want to make a claim won't have to pay for an appraisal.

On the other, it'll be up to the board to decide whether a claim is valid - at least until the courts resolve complicated aspects of the measure, Howe said.

Until the courts clear up the issue, "it's a gut feeling that the Board of Commissioners is coming to, (whether) the land-use regulation is or is not reducing the fair market value," Howe said.

Domestic violence

Lane County officials are scrambling to make sure 300 or so domestic-violence offenders stay under supervision.

The Health and Human Services department, stretched thin by the work load, wants to drop its probation supervision of misdemeanor domestic-violence offenders so they can focus on more dangerous felony offenders.

In play are the 370 or so offenders guilty of misdemeanor domestic violence and sex offenses who are under HHS supervision at any one time.

Advocates for women's safety warn of dire consequences if the offenders go unsupervised in the community, and officials formed a task force this week to discuss the options.

Those options include taking money from other services, creating a domestic-violence court or deferring the sentences of offenders who complete treatment, said Rob Rockstroh, director of Health and Human Services.

Rockstroh and others will brainstorm until April 19, when they'll ask for direction from the commissioners.

Barring a solution, HHS will stop taking new cases the following Friday.

Rockstroh doesn't have the answer, but said he's upbeat.

"I suspect one way or another, either through moving money around or being more creative with programs, that we'll cover most of (the cases)," he said this week.

Matt Cooper can be reached at 338-2317 or
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Title Annotation:Government
Publication:The Register-Guard (Eugene, OR)
Date:Mar 24, 2006
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