More than 1,800 respond to Albany Residents Community Survey
The results are in for the 2014 Albany Residents Community Survey, which was conducted February 4-10.
The survey results can be accessed at http://www.cityofalbany.net/2014survey.
Visitors can download the entire survey summary containing both graphs
and data tables as a pdf. The files include comparative graphs
that show answers compared by gender, age of respondents, neighborhood,
and other demographic information.
The survey was conducted
online in English and Spanish; 1,827 responses were received by
midnight February 10. Invitations were sent to 22,772 e-mail
addresses that the City uses for distribution of the monthly City
Bridges newsletter. Of those, 5,273 opened the invitation and
1,827 self-identified residents participated. Based on Albany's
population of 51,000, the responses provide for a margin of error of +/-
Here is some of what they said:
- Residents generally feel safe or very safe both day and
night in their neighborhood, shopping areas and downtown, but not
in parks at night.
- 34.7% feel unsafe or very unsafe from
property crimes like burglary and theft, while 12.3% feel unsafe or
very unsafe from violent crime.
- Respondents had a positive view on shopping and services in Albany.
people often disagree or strongly disagree with statements such as
"Albany has an inviting appearance" or "There is a strong sense of
community" than older respondents.
- Rating "The value
of services provided for the taxes/fees paid" to the City of
Albany, 64.15% rate the city average to excellent, while 25.32% rate it
below average to poor. Those who feel the most like they
are getting below average to poor value have incomes under $25,000
or $150,000 or more.
- Services provided by the City of
Albany are rated on a 5-point scale where 1 = Poor, 2 = Below
Average, 3 = Average, 4 = Good, and 5 = Excellent. Fire Emergency
Response, Paramedics/Ambulance and Public Libraries received scores
of 4.42, 4.38, and 4.34 respectively. The lowest scores went to
Snow/Ice Response at 2.70, Economic Development at 2.78, and Street
Repairs at 2.85.
- Of 30 City service areas measured, 25 had scores of 3.0 or higher and five had scores between 2.70 and 2.99.
A detailed staff report providing more in-depth analysis will be delivered to the City Council in March.
Keep shopping carts where they belong
Shopping carts are a convenience. Most who use shopping carts
return them to the business as intended, while others use carts to move
things to other places, then abandon the carts where they become an
resident and business representative can take an active role in keeping
Albany clean and shopping carts where they belong. Under the
Albany Municipal Code 7.84.210, businesses that use shopping carts are
responsible for retrieving theirs that are abandoned. Carts shall
be retrieved by their owners within 72 hours after being notified that
the carts have been abandoned.
Residents can call
a business directly to request that carts be removed and can call
Albany Police to report abandoned carts. When calling police, please
provide the name of the business that owns the cart, a description of
the cart, and where it is located. Carts that are not retrieved by the
owner within 72 hours can be picked up by the City. Owners may be
fined $50 to retrieve each cart that the City collects.
If you see a cart that's not where it belongs, here are numbers and names for whom to call:
Shopping Cart Retrieval 1-888-552-2787:
Northwest Food Merchants Cart Rescue 503-899-2475:
Call stores for direct pickup:
Mega Foods 541-967-7633
Albany Police using social media to connect with the community
Albany Police Department is trying new ways to communicate and engage with Albany residents online:
- The MyPD phone application provides access to a number of
features including contacts, feedback, and tip forms; links to
information about wanted persons and sex offenders; and allows APD to
solicit the public's help in ongoing investigations and crimes.
Other access includes information from the Linn County Jail,
Federal Emergency Management Agency, National Weather Service, and the
National Terror Advisory System. MyPD is available from iTunes or
GooglePlay on iPhones or Androids. MyPD was developed by the law
enforcement technology and app company WiredBlue.
- Facebook and
Twitter are being used to provide information on wanted persons, crime
prevention tips, events, and a look at APD employees.
technology is a great way to effectively communicate with our
community," said Sandy Roberts, Community Education Specialist.
"We can push out notifications to the public and our community
partners have a variety of ways to contact us easily from their smart
phone or tablet."
Facebook, MyPD, and
Twitter each have APD's home screen with a variety of convenient
features. All are linked to eachother, so users can find MyPD the
Facebook page and Twitter on MyPD.
Emergencies should always be reported to 9-1-1 to ensure an appropriate and timely response.
For more information, visit www.cityofalbany.net/departments/police or https://www.facebook.com/albanypd. If you have questions about APD's social media outlets, call Sandy Roberts at 541-917-3206 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
New Library programs for babies and toddlers
|Nicole Kalita at Library's new toddler program|
Albany Public Library is offering two new programs on Fridays for very young children at the Main Library, 2450 14th Avenue SE.
At 10:15 a.m., toddlers
and their parents or caregivers are invited to enjoy 30 minutes of
stories, songs, and activities to build language and literacy
skills. At 11:00 a.m., babies up to a year old, with their parents
or caregivers, are invited for a 20-minute program. Both sessions
are conducted by Nicole Kalita of Linn-Benton Community College
The Library continues to
offer Family Story Time every Monday at 7:00 p.m., and Preschool Story
Time for children ages 3 - 5 at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday at the
Main Library, and Tuesdays at the Carnegie Library, 302 Ferry Street
SW. Many of these programs include a puppet show or arts and craft
The programs are free of charge, and no registration is required. For more information, e-mail email@example.com or call the Library Children's Desk at 541-917-7583.
Albany Parks & Recreation earns donations from Fred Meyer
shoppers who use the company's Rewards card can donate to Albany Parks
& Recreation Department programs every time they shop.
Each year, Fred
Meyer donates $2.5 million to nonprofits in Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, and
Washington, based on where the company's customers tell it to give.
Here's how to help Parks & Recreation earn those donations:
- Sign up for the Community Rewards program by linking your Fred Meyer Rewards Card to Albany Parks & Recreation at www.fredmeyer.com/communityrewards. Search for Albany Parks & Recreation by name or use nonprofit number 91823.
- With each purchase using the Rewards Card, Albany Parks & Recreation earns a donation.
- Shoppers will still earn Rewards Points, Fuel Points, and Rebates.
- Shoppers who don't have a Rewards Card can apply at any Customer Service desk at Fred Meyer stores.
- For more information, visit www.fredmeyer.com/communityrewards
Do you need flood insurance?
insurance protects you from the financial devastation caused by floods.
If you don't have flood insurance, talk to your insurance
agent. Even a few inches of water can bring thousands of dollars
in repair and restoration costs. Most homeowners insurance does
not cover flood damage, and disaster relief funds cover only a small
portion of flood damage.
if you don't carry a mortgage, you should still have flood insurance.
If you rent, your landlord is responsible for the structure but
not your belongings. You can purchase a separate flood insurance
policy because Albany participates in the National Flood Insurance
Program (NFIP). The premiums are discounted because Albany also
participates in the Federal Emergency Management Association's Community
Rating System program, which requires floodplain management activities
above and beyond minimum NFIP standards.
applies whether flooding results from heavy or prolonged rains, snow
melt, blocked storm drainage systems, levee dam failure, or other
causes. To be considered a flood, the waters must cover at least
two acres or affect at least two properties.
insurance is available for properties within and outside of
floodplains. A property's flood risk is shown on flood hazard
maps. Different types of policies are available depending on the
- If you live in a high-risk area, you
will need a Standard Policy. Most mortgage lenders will require
that you have such a policy before they will approve your loan,
- Outside of high-risk areas,
flood insurance is also available, usually at lower cost. A
Preferred Risk Policy covers both a home and its contents. While
you aren't federally required to have flood insurance in a
low-to-moderate risk area, it doesn't mean you won't ever need it.
Large floods often extend beyond the boundaries of high-risk areas, and
smaller floods occur outside high-risk areas as well. In fact,
about 25% of all flood insurance claims come from low-to-moderate risk
FEMA has the latest information about flood insurance policies and premiums at: http://www.floodsmart.gov/floodsmart/. FEMA's "Answers to Questions about the National Flood Insurance Program" can be downloaded at http://www.fema.gov/library/viewRecord.do?id=1404.
Preventing falls among older adults
The two recent
winter snowstorms, complicated by ice and followed by heavy rain,
created widespread public inconvenience. Treacherous road
conditions present a reminder of the danger, year-round, of falling,
particularly for older adults.
Each year, one in
every three adults age 65 and older falls. Those falls can result
in moderate to severe injuries and increase the risk of early death.
Falling is a public health problem that is largely preventable.
The Albany Fire Department recommends this information from the Centers
for Disease Control and Prevention to help Albany residents learn about
falls and how to prevent them:
Annette Hobbs, Christmas Storybook Land honored by Human Relations Commission
executive director of Fish of Albany, and Christmas Storybook Land, a
free holiday attraction produced by dozens of community volunteers,
received the 2014 Albany Human Relations Awards in January.
The awards are
given annually by the Albany Human Relations Commission. This is
the third year for the awards which are intended for individuals and
nonprofit organizations that further the Commission's charter: "to
promote harmonious relations among the citizens of Albany."
Hobbs oversees a
staff of six and more than 30 volunteers in guiding Fish of Albany
services, which include clothing, bedding, household and school
supplies, and food boxes; medication for life-threatening conditions;
emergency transportation and utility or rent payments; and providing
supervised shelter for pregnant teens and new teen mothers and their
In a letter
nominating Hobbs for the award, Janel Bennett wrote: "Annette is a
huge part of why this nonprofit can accomplish so much on a small
budget. She attends every can drive, packs food boxes, sorts at
the Clothes Closet and keeps the organization running smoothly.
She checks in with Albany schools to see if any students need food
for the weekend, shoes, a winter coat or even just soap to bathe with.
Every year, Fish is able to provide services to around 23,000
because Annette does the work of four people....For her it is not a job.
It is her passion and that is why she is so good at what she
Storybook Land was founded as a nonprofit in 1980 by three Albany
families. The seasonal effort is a family-oriented public display
of characters and scenes from nursery rhymes, children's stories, family
movies, and other popular cultural or historical periods, presented as a
simulated walk through the woods at the Linn County Expo Center.
More than 400 volunteers of all ages are involved in creating and
presenting the elaborate tableaux.
encouraged to donate a can of food as admission; food is donated to Fish
of Albany. In 2013, 25,300 people of all ages visited Storybook
Land, donating 18,700 food items. Learn more about Christmas
Storybook Land at www.christmasstorybookland.org or facebook.com/ChristmasStorybook.AlbanyOR.
The Human Relations Commission also recognized:
- Fish of Albany for providing free clothing, food, crisis
intervention, housing and support for pregnant teens and teen mothers
with children, and help with transportation and critical medication to
thousands of Albany residents each year since 1972.
Albright, one of the founders of Christmas Storybookland, past
president of the Timber Carnival, and service with Linn County Mental
Health, Fish, Albany Helping Hands, The Brass Ring Carousel, and many
service clubs for more than 40 years; and
Kirbey, for more than three years, so far, as planner, shopper, chef,
and supervisor cook for the weekly First Christian Church Community
Members of the
City's Human Relations Commission and Mayor Sharon Konopa presented the
awards at the City Council's January 22, 2014, meeting.
City Environmental Services, Albany Options School class featured on PBS
A video production
crew with "This American Land," a Public Broadcasting System series,
recorded an episode in Albany in the spring of 2013, featuring a
bioswale project constructed by the ecology class at Albany Options
School, with support from Albany Public Works Environmental Services and
funded by a Captain Planet Foundation grant.
The class was
shown working on the school's bioswale rain garden; and several students
and staff were interviewed about the school's program, the student
body, and the school's efforts as a "green" school to deal with water
runoff and infiltration.
The episode has aired on OPB Plus in Oregon and is available on YouTube at http://youtu.be/8GRlCL6PQ1s?t=16m51s. .
Civil War cannon on display at City Hall
six-foot-long, muzzle-loading cannon that Albany Unionists fired to
recognize their victories during the Civil War is on display inside
Albany City Hall, where it will remain for about a year.
reception hosted by the Monteith Historical Society was held February
12, 2014, to celebrate the return of the cannon that had been lost to
Albany for decades.
The full story of the cannon's history during and after the Civil War probably will never be known.
accounts say the cannon was stolen by piqued Southern sympathizers in
1863 then scuttled from a ferry into the Willamette River, where it
remained until the Albany Sand & Gravel Co. fished it up in 1933
during a dredging operation. The company claimed ownership, and
the gun was kept at its business until it went to the post office, where
it was fired once to inaugurate Oregon's centennial in 1959.
the cannon disappeared, only to turn up in a shed in Lebanon when in
2011 its owner said he was willing to sell it to the Monteith Historical
Society for $15,000. The Society didn't have enough money to buy
it, so the Tripp family of Albany stepped in to purchase the gun and
asked that it be displayed at City Hall for a year in memory of Rodney
When the year is up, the cannon will go to the Monteith House Museum, 518 Second Avenue S.W.
ensure the cannon's authenticity, a photo taken after it was raised
from the Willamette was compared to the cannon at City Hall. The
markings prove it is the same gun right down to a dent in its muzzle.
to going on display, the cannon was stored at the City's Park
Maintenance shops, where it was rubbed down to remove much of the rust
that had accumulated over the years.
provided by Albany Regional Museum volunteer Cathy Ingalls in
commemoration of the 150th anniversary of Albany's incorporation.
Watch for more stories about Albany's first 150 years in future
editions of City Bridges.)
Ward I Councilors
Ward II Councilors
Ward III Councilors