Judge Says It's Too Soon To Rule On Skinner Land Deed

Dec 1, 2016

A Coos County Judge says he can’t rule now on a proposed land swap involving the City of Eugene and Lane County. This is the latest in the saga involving Eugene City Hall.

Ken Darling, who is the great great grandson of Eugene and Mary Skinner, doesn't want the terms of the land deed to be ignored.
Credit Rachael McDonald

Judge Richard Barron was asked to decide whether Eugene could place its new city hall on land that was given to Lane County by Eugene and Mary Skinner in the 1800s. The city and county are exploring their options for where to locate both City Hall and a new County courthouse.
Ken Darling says he’s the great, great, grandson of Eugene Skinner.
Darling: “I think the City Hall should have their new building and I think the courthouse and Lane Government should have their own new building but I still think they need to honor the restrictions that were in the Skinner deed.”
The land deed states that the county seat should be placed in the 4 block area that now includes the park blocks, Lane County building and the butterfly parking lot. City spokeswoman Jan Bohman says the judge’s ruling doesn’t cut off the conversation.
Bohman: “It doesn’t preclude any of the options that are currently being discussed but it also does not provide the clarity that we were hoping to get earlier in the process.”
There’s a meeting Monday with Eugene City Councilors and the Lane County Board of Commissioners to talk about what’s next. The Council will also discuss the option of moving City Hall to the EWEB Building.