Lane County, Oregon

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Lane County is a county in the U.S. state of Oregon. It is named in honor of Joseph Lane, Oregon's first territorial governor. The seat of the county is Eugene. In 2008, Lane County has an estimated population of 346,560.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the Eugene-Springfield Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) encompasses the entire Lane County.[1] It is the third largest MSA in Oregon, and the 144th largest in the country. [2][3]



Although 90 % of Lane County is forested, the county also contains the second largest urban area in Oregon, centered around Eugene and Springfield.

The US Forest Service is landlord of 48% of the lands within the county boundaries, a fact which has contributed to the county's inability to fund basic government services. The federal land, which can not be taxed, previously generated hundreds of millions of dollars in logging-derived support for government, but that support was sharply reduced when various environmental regulations curtailed logging by approximately 78%. [4] Although Congress subsequently passed a series of revenue replacing bills culminating in the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act (SRSCSDA) of 2000, the federal subsidies have not been adequate to fully replace logging as a means of supporting basic government services[5]. Today, according to the Oregon Criminal Justice Commission Report of 2009, Lane County crime rates are bad and continuing to worsen, but county law enforcement programs and services, from investigation to jail capacity, have been reduced to as little as 15% of state and national average capacity for a jurisdiction of similar size[6].

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