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Monthly Archives: December 2010

Salem Partners Launch Lighting Program for Businesses

By Chemeketa SBDC

The City of Salem, in partnership with West Coast Bank, launched a new pilot loan program for Salem-area Portland General Electric and Salem Electric commercial customers.  Through the new program funded by the City’s Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant, commercial business owners and tenants are eligible to receive incentives of up to 50 percent for lighting improvements and access to a low-interest loan for the remaining costs.  Eligible lighting improvements include adding compact fluorescent lamps, electronic ballasts, and lighting controls (occupancy sensors and dimmers), and typically result in a payback period of between 3-4 years.

Program information and an application can be obtained from Salem Electric, West Coast Bank, or the City’s Urban Development Department.  For more information, please contact Annie Gorski at 503-588-6178, email, or visit and click on “Community Energy Strategy”.  Applicants need to meet West Coast Bank’s underwriting requirements and those required by the utilities.  An inspection will be required prior to project start and after project completion to ensure the work was done properly and will produce the desired energy savings.

SBDC Client, NW Kids Club, in the News

By Chemeketa SBDC

NW Kids Club members enjoy new space

By:  Elida S. Perez • Statesman Journal • November 17, 2010

The sounds of children running around, playing, laughing and screaming are back at the new NW Kids Club location in South Salem.

“We’re pretty excited to be able to provide the service back to the community,” said Elizabeth McDonough, co-owner of the club.

The new location is an 11,000-square-foot facility with a large, open play area and several theme rooms for children to interact and play. The walls are brightly painted with murals, and there are a variety of toys.

McDonough said there are a few differences between the current location and the former one in northeast Salem; the new building is larger, and she has plans to gradually add more theme rooms to the club. There’s also no giant sandbox.

Janice Weide, who takes her 4-year-old granddaughter Norah Cavanaugh, to the club noticed the sandbox was missing but said it wasn’t a deal breaker.

“It’s nice and roomy, and the theme rooms are fun,” Cavanaugh said.

McDonough said she would have liked to include a sandbox, but the ventilation system in the new location is too old to support it.

There is, however, a room where children can play with small trains, a market room with toy shopping carts and groceries, a princess room with costumes, and a music room with some basic instruments.

The open play area has a variety of playground-type toys where children can practice riding bikes, climb around, jump in the bounce house or slide.

For business owners such as Nichole Tarter, who runs Half-Pint Daycare and was a member of the NW Kids Club before it closed, having the club reopen in time for the cold weather is good timing.

“I’ll try to bring them at least once a week,” Tarter said.

For about four months, the club was operating at a minimal level out of the owners’ home after the lease was not renewed at the northeast Salem location. Now that the business is up and running, McDonough said she will continue to add features.

Eventually, the club will have a dance room and an infant room. She also wants to bring back the snack bar.

“We’re still moving forward,” McDonough said.
esperez at statesmanjournal dot com or (503) 399-6740

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