Petitioners: Let there be light

Petitioners: Let there be light

LOWELL, Ore. - Some residents of Lowell are getting tired of dark streets and dim lights for their homes.

They hope city hall officials will see the light and loosen up the city code.

Janet McNamee and her neighbors hit the streets with petitions. They're going to the City Council next week with one request: Let there be light.

McNamee said they're asking the council to change the Lowell city code to allow brighter outside house lighting for their safety.

She said the lights are regulated under what's called a dark sky ordinance, where home lighting is very restrictive to the point where even some motion detector lights don't meet code.

The idea is to create less light pollution at night that obstructs stargazing.

Petitioners said the darkness leaves them worried about their safety.

"All we are asking the city is to allow us to have security lighting of some sort, so that we can feel safe at our own homes," McNamee said.

Neighbor Clarrissa Anderson supports the petition. "It's not unreasonable to have lighting to light the pathway that takes you to your front door."

McNamee and Anderson said they've had more home break-ins, gas siphoned out of vehicles and other problems on the increase.

They will take their signatures to the City Council next Tuesday night to see what can be done.

Voters reject 'dark sky' in Bandon

Voters in the southern Oregon coastal city Bandon have rejected a "dark sky" ordinance that would have required new outdoor lighting to be shielded to shine downward.

The City Council passed the measure last year. But the World Newspaper in Coos Bay reports that on Tuesday, Bandon voters were against it, 524-419.

"Dark sky" fixtures are intended to reduce nighttime light pollution.

An opponent, Rob Taylor, says people are tired of more regulations.

The measure would have affected new street lights, yard lights, porch lights and other outdoor lighting. It wouldn't have affected existing lights.

City Manager Matt Winkel says the city itself has been installing "dark sky" fixtures for the last five or six years and will continue to do so.