Updates

  • Bend Business Roundup 1-4-19

    By on January 4, 2019

    Your weekly(ish) update on business, law and politics from Bend, Oregon.

    Business: If you own residential rental property in Oregon and you sometimes feel like the state looks poorly upon your ilk, you’re right. And it’s likely to get a lot worse. Faced with a severe rental housing shortage and rising prices in some parts of the state (including Bend), Democrats in Salem want the country’s first statewide rent control law, and they are likely to get it.

    Law: Guy gets stuck in a really smelly Burger King bathroom for a while and eventually gets out. Manager verbally promises the guy free meals for life. Guy proceeds to eat at Burger King for the next 13 days straight (!) and BK thought this a bit much and told him it would no longer honor the free meal promise. Guy sues BK, seeking damages equating one Whopper meal per week until he reaches 72 years of age. This fact pattern will be on countless law school final exams come Spring.

    Politics: Former Bend mayor, and good friend of BBR, Casey Roats talked to the Bulletin about his struggles with anxiety and depression while in office. It’s a rare glimpse of a politician as a human being, struggling with some of the same issues many others also struggle with. It took a lot of courage for Casey to talk about this, and we’re all better for his having done so.

    Et cetera:  Even while Oregon seeks to further regulate the housing market, it is at long last deregulating the practice of eating roadkill, at least (1) when that roadkill is deer or elk; (2) when eater is also the person who hit said deer or elk, (3) when you apply for a permit to eat the deer or elk, and (4) when you provide the head of the deer or elk to the state. Something tells me this is several steps too many for roadkill-eating scofflaws and illicit roadkill eating will continue unimpeded. Yes, we’re talking about you, Coos County.

    You can receive the Bend Business Roundup in your email inbox each Friday by going  here. No sales, no spam. Just the weekly email you’ve come to know and love.

    Have a great weekend!

    Read more
  • Bend Entrepreneur Report: November Comparison

    By on January 1, 2019

    Registrations Up Over November 2017

    Bend, OR – Entrepreneurs registered 277 new businesses in Bend, Oregon, in November, compared with 216 in November 2017.

    So far in 2018, Bend entrepreneurs have registered 3,275 businesses, versus 3,056 through November in 2017.

    “It looks like business registrations may be closing the year continuing with a strong pace,” Bend business attorney Jeff Eager of EagerLaw PC said.

    Each month, EagerLaw carefully analyzes Oregon Secretary of State’s business registration data to prepare the Bend Entrepreneur Report. The Report is released monthly to local media and on the EagerLaw PC Facebook page, where the firm also spotlights local business achievements and provides information of use to Bend businesses.

    Read more
  • Bend Business Roundup 12-21-18

    By on December 21, 2018

    Happy Friday,

    Here’s some stuff you might like.

    Business: Construction activity has leveled off in Bend, as measured by single-family home building permits. This combined with the news that the City of Portland is laying off four staff from its development department because of a sharp decline in applications indicates a slowdown in the breakneck residential construction market, at least in two of the pricier cities in Oregon.

    Law: Get this: Local painting business accuses former bookkeeper of embezzling $200,000. DA brings charges against the bookeeper. Bookkeeper says that the money was actually in the form of gifts because she was having an affair with the owner of the painting business. Bookeeper’s attorney uncovers evidence that the owner of the painting business allegedly “tampered” with a member of the grand jury that indicted the bookkeeper. Bookkeeper is now suing the DA and Bend police. The Lifetime movie will be out in late 2019 (I made that last part up).

    Politics: There are 435 members of the U.S. House of Representatives, allocated by population. Oregon has had five House seats since after the 1980 census, but it’s on pace to get one more seat following the 2020 census. Currently, Democrats hold four seats, with Greg Walden being the lone Republican, representing everything east of the Cascades (including Bend) as well as southern Oregon. Democrats are likely to be in charge of drawing the boundaries for the newly configured districts, but they will have a hard time avoiding creating another Republican-leaning seat without some pretty significant gerrymandering. There aren’t that many Republicans in Oregon, but there’s probably enough for two out of six seats.

    Et cetera: The Oregon Ducks football team plays in something called the Redbox Bowl on Christmas Eve. I’m a pretty ardent Ducks fan and reasonably informed college football follower and I admit I had never heard of this bowl before the Ducks were picked to play in it. Turns out for a while this bowl was called the Diamond Walnut San Francisco Bowl, which my God in 2002-2003 was the walnut market big enough to justify a bowl? No matter, it’s better than the Beavers’ bowl game…

    Your friends can sign up to receive the Bend Business Roundup here. No sales, no spam. Just the weekly email you’ve come to know and love.

    Have a great weekend and Merry Christmas! We here at BBR will take next week off and then be back better than ever for 2019.

    Read more
  • Bend Business Roundup 12-14-18

    By on December 14, 2018

    Your weekly(ish) update on business, law and politics from Bend, Oregon.

     

    Business:

     One quarter (!) of Bend residents are considered “rent-burdened,” which means they spend more than 50% of their income on housing. The city’s Affordable Housing Committee held a hearing this…

    Read more
  • Bend Business Roundup 12-07-18

    By on December 7, 2018

    Your weekly(ish) update on business, law and politics from Bend, Oregon.

    Business: The Bulletin runs a nifty quarterly Central Oregon Business Index which is really an economic index, but I put lots of economic stuff in this section called business so who am I to complain? Anyway, for the third quarter of 2018, the index is mostly flat, indicating we are humming along with a strong economy that probably doesn’t have a lot of room to get much stronger in the near-term.

    Law: If you own residential rental property in Oregon and when your tenant moves out he leaves some of his personal property behind, I’m sorry because you are in for some unpleasantness. You’re required to provide written notice to the tenant, make a determination of value, and sometimes hold a public sale, with the proceeds of which eventually going to the tenant, who by the way left the stuff in your property to begin with. The statute governing all of this is 19 pages long when printed out and it’s a mess. This article simplifies things a bit if you’re interested.

    Politics: According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the five U.S. counties with the highest median income are all suburbs of Washington, D.C. Under both parties, the federal government has, particularly since WWII, dramatically increased its power and wealth. Many of the people who live in those wealthy suburbs are paid well to influence the disposition of that power and wealth.

    Et cetera:  This past week marked 85 years since the end of alcohol prohibition in the U.S.  Winston Churchill had a well-known penchant for booze beginning, according to some accounts, with breakfast each day. In 1932, before he became Prime Minister, Churchill visited the U.S., which was still under the influence (ahem) of prohibition. The solution? Churchill obtained a doctor’s note stating that he “necessitates the use of alcoholic spirits especially at meal times. The amount is naturally indefinite[.]” Cheers!

    You can receive the Bend Business Roundup in your email inbox each Friday by going  here. No sales, no spam. Just the weekly email you’ve come to know and love.

    Jeff Eager

    Read more
  • Bend Business Roundup 11-30-18

    By on November 30, 2018

    Your weekly(ish) update on business, law and politics from Bend, Oregon.

    Business: The National Association of Realtors points out that one reason for the flattening housing prices in the West (Bend is seeing this too) is that our region saw the biggest, fastest price increases and consumers are just being priced out of the market. That, along with the impact of increased interest rates, makes sense to me for what we’re seeing locally.

    Law: One of the most common ways small businesses get tripped up legally is by designating someone an independent contractor when they are, in fact, an employee. The distinction between the two is not as clear as we might like, but in general it relates to the amount of control the business has over the worker – more control is likely an employment relationship; less control more likely an independent contractor relationship. Getting this right is a big deal for small businesses because lost wages, penalties and attorney fees are on the line, like this delivery company in Portland that was just ordered to pay $3.2 million to workers it had mischaracterized as independent contractors. Here’s a website maintained by the State of Oregon providing some pretty high-level guidance for employers.

    Politics: Oregon’s strong economy is providing record revenue to the state government, but revenue over the next two-year budget, projected to be a 5% increase over the revenue from the current budget, is likely to be $623 million short. Newly re-elected Governor Kate Brown is proposing $2 billion in tax increases ($483 for every man, woman and child in Oregon, including our two toddler boys who aren’t likely to pitch in) for schools, and $700 million in hospital and other health care taxes to better fund Medicaid. (PS – turns out the calculator on my iPhone will only go to the 100s of millions, not billions which might explain some state and federal budgeting problems).

    Et cetera:  Did you have salad with your Thanksgiving meal? If so, you’re in good company assuming you live in the American West. Turns out salad is the Thanksgiving side dish most disproportionately favored by Westerners, which basically reinforces every stereotype people in the rest of the country have about us. Seems to me the South is onto something with its affinity for mac and cheese.

    You can receive the Bend Business Roundup in your email inbox each Friday by going  here. No sales, no spam. Just the weekly email you’ve come to know and love.

    Jeff Eager

    Read more