June 29, 2016 eClips

* New corporate tax report could add heat to debate over November ballot measure
* 6 Oregon berries that go beyond Marions
* It’s blackberry season: We go beyond marionberries with an Oregon-grown taste test
* Oregon gets $85 million in VW emissions settlement
* The high cost of government transparency in Oregon — Opinion
* When women and mothers serve as lawmakers — Guest Opinion
* Oregon wins $4.9 million to help a handful of low-performing schools improve
* Lawmaker’s actions questioned by Portland police officer
* Franklin Graham meets with embattled Oregon judge
* Opinions differ on SCOTUS corruption ruling
* New cameras keep electronic eye on Western wildfires
* Oregon gets $85 million from VW scandal payout
* Attorneys press Oregon VW cases as carmaker proposes emission scandal settlement
* Central Oregon job growth to lead the state
* Ruling on Virginia governor could have ripple in Oregon
* Editorial: Dont be starry-eyed about the BETC — Opinion
* Student Debt & New Gun Owner
* Brown Not Ready To Take Stance On Business Tax Measure
* 3 Things To Know About Oregon’s High School Funding Initiative
* Think Tank Says Oregon Corporations’ Share Of Tax Burden Is Declining
* Oregon juniper loan program off to slow start, but backers remain hopeful
* Oregon countys GMO ban ruling appealed
* Appeals court: Washington must fix salmon-blocking culverts
* EOU looks to Umatilla County as it works to increase enrollment
* Cascadia aftermath and Umatilla County
* Our view: Fire season arrives in Eastern Oregon — Opinion
* Harney County keeps judge who blocked refuge occupiers
* Medical care is 1st defense against toxic stress — Guest Opinion
* New fire-season regs take effect Thursday
* Boat managers recommend no motor ban on Chetco River
* Our View: No more delay on derelict properties — Opinion
* Digs will uncover history of Indian war on coast
* New health director takes the reins
* Coos Bay prepares for disaster
* We can’t experiment with wastewater — Guest Opinion
* NOAA reminding people not to touch or pick up seal pups
* Water district moves to close road over dam
* Maritime weigh-in rule dispute appears resolved
* Editorial: Time to allow pot to join real world — Opinion
* Editorial: Fire season gets rolling in Oregon — Opinion
* Merkley talks fire costs
* Is school water safe?
* Unemployment rate drops to 7.6 percent
* Five-year population change in Eastern Oregon
* Secretary of the Interior Jewell designates newest national natural landmark
* Forest group considers project planning
* Logging mishap leaves 1 dead
* Cougar appears at fairgrounds
* Spring Chinook fishing opens Saturday on Wallowa River
* Town hall aims to boost tourism in Douglas County
* State irrigation program receives national conservation award
* Prime Working Age Oregon Males– Blog
* Washington Residents Wish They Still Had State Liquor Stores
* The Strawberry Defined Oregon. But Is It Going Away?
* A Maltese Company Wants Overseas Players to Buy Millions of Oregon Lottery Tickets
* Breaking From Custom, One Small Oregon Farm Pays Pickers by the Hour
* Strawberry Shorthand: A Field Guide to Oregon and California Strawberries
* More than 5,300 U.S. water systems violated lead-testing rules last year
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NEW CORPORATE TAX REPORT COULD ADD HEAT TO DEBATE OVER NOVEMBER BALLOT MEASURE (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/politics/index.ssf/2016/06/new_corporate_tax_report_could.html#incart_river_home

The share of Oregon income taxes paid by corporations has declined dramatically over the last four decades, from 18.5 percent in 1975 to 6.7 percent today, according to a report released this week by a Portland think tank that advocates for progressive tax policies.

“Corporate income tax contributions have declined to such an extent that the Oregon Lottery now brings in more revenue,” the Oregon Center for Public Policy wrote in the report.

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6 OREGON BERRIES THAT GO BEYOND MARIONS (Portland Oregonian)

http://www.oregonlive.com/food/2016/06/6_oregon_berries_that_go_beyon.html#0

We visited Josh Alsberg of Rubinette Produce Market, who introduced us to six varieties of cane berries. Caneberries — or brambleberries — are typically perennial fruits that grow on thorny vines. They are composed of juicy “drupelettes,” which are the tiny nodules that cluster together to make an explosion when you bit in to the berries.

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IT’S BLACKBERRY SEASON: WE GO BEYOND MARIONBERRIES WITH AN OREGON-GROWN TASTE TEST (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/food/2016/06/its_blackberry_season_we_go_be.html#incart_river_home

The marionberry ushers Oregonians into summer — a berry as tart and juicy as the days are long and hot.

The dark purple blackberry is for Oregon, by Oregon. Created at Oregon State University, it bears the name of its birthplace — Marion County — and is so delicate, the harvest lasts only about three weeks toward the end of June. That makes it hard for anyone outside of the Pacific Northwest to get their hands on the sweet fruit.

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OREGON GETS $85 MILLION IN VW EMISSIONS SETTLEMENT (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/environment/index.ssf/2016/06/oregon_gets_85_million_in_vw_e.html#incart_river_home

Oregon will receive more than $85 million as part of state and federal settlements with Volkswagen, the automaker at the center of emissions fraud lawsuits across the country.

About $68 million will help establish a special fund aimed at reducing diesel emissions in Oregon, Gov. Kate Brown and Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum announced at a news conference Tuesday in Portland.

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THE HIGH COST OF GOVERNMENT TRANSPARENCY IN OREGON — OPINION (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/portland/index.ssf/2016/06/the_high_cost_of_government_tr.html#incart_river_home

Last year, The Oregonian/OregonLive requested an electronic database of property recorded into evidence by the Portland Police Bureau. The estimated cost of making those public records public?

$1,042,450.20.

It was a bit out of our price range.

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WHEN WOMEN AND MOTHERS SERVE AS LAWMAKERS — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/opinion/index.ssf/2016/06/when_women_and_mothers_serve_a.html#incart_river_index

When I met with my boss years ago to plan my maternity leave, he spoke admiringly of a woman who returned to her job two weeks after childbirth. I had no clear maternity-related benefits in that position, and our family needed my income. I went back to work after just six weeks. My baby, unfortunately, was unable to switch between nursing and bottle-feeding, so when I returned to work, my newborn stopped nursing. It was heartbreaking.

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OREGON WINS $4.9 MILLION TO HELP A HANDFUL OF LOW-PERFORMING SCHOOLS IMPROVE (Portland Oregonian) http://www.oregonlive.com/education/index.ssf/2016/06/oregon_wins_49_million_to_help.html#incart_river_index

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded Oregon $4.9 million to help a handful of schools with persistently low student achievement to improve.

Roughly nine schools will be chosen in January to receive the money over the course of about four years, said Tim Boyd, director of district and school effectiveness. Only those who were put on a list of “priority” and “focus” schools based on poor performance in 2011 and 2012 are eligible to apply, he said.

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LAWMAKER’S ACTIONS QUESTIONED BY PORTLAND POLICE OFFICER (Salem Statesman Journal) http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/politics/2016/06/28/lawmakers-actions-questioned-portland-police-officer/86431436/

A Portland police officer accuses Rep. Jodi Hack, R-Salem, of possibly overstepping ethical boundaries for legislators when she confronted him about traffic tickets issued to her son. Hack, who faces re-election for the first time in November, denied the allegations.

Officer Laurent Bonczijk ticketed Hack’s 22-year-old son, Reece Hack on Jan. 9 after he was involved in a crash on I-5 northbound in Portland, just south of the Marquam Bridge.

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FRANKLIN GRAHAM MEETS WITH EMBATTLED OREGON JUDGE (Salem Statesman Journal) http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/politics/2016/06/28/franklin-graham-meets-embattled-oregon-judge/86488414/

Evangelist Franklin Graham met on Tuesday with Marion County Circuit Judge Vance Day, who has been implicated by the state judicial ethics commission in a series of ethical transgressions.

Day has denied the allegations against him. His case currently awaits scheduling for oral arguments before the Oregon Supreme Court, which hands down judicial sanctions _________________________________________

OPINIONS DIFFER ON SCOTUS CORRUPTION RULING (Salem Statesman Journal) http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2016/06/28/opinions-differ-scotus-corruption-ruling/86473282/

A ruling by the United States Supreme Court on Monday is expected to affect how United States attorneys offices prosecute state officials for public corruption.

Closer to home, it is unknown whether the high court’s opinion will have any bearing on an investigation by Oregon’s U.S. Attorney into alleged acts by former Gov. John Kitzhaber and his fiancee, Cylvia Hayes, that led to the fourth-term governor’s resignation in February 2015.

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NEW CAMERAS KEEP ELECTRONIC EYE ON WESTERN WILDFIRES (Salem Statesman Journal) http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2016/06/29/new-cameras-keep-electronic-eye-western-wildfires/86507094/

As the summer wildfire season heats up in the West, a growing network of online cameras installed on forested mountaintops is changing the way crews fight fires by allowing early detection that triggers quicker, cheaper and more tactical suppression.

The network of roughly 20 high-definition cameras being installed around the Lake Tahoe region can pan, tilt and zoom into fires. They can rotate 360 degrees. And the cameras even have night vision to supplement human lookouts that only work during daylight hours.

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OREGON GETS $85 MILLION FROM VW SCANDAL PAYOUT (Salem Statesman Journal) http://www.statesmanjournal.com/story/news/2016/06/28/oregon-gets-85-million-vw-scandal-payout/86494596/

Volkswagen is planning to pay $85 million to Oregon as part of a massive fraud settlement, $17 million of which will go to the Oregon Department of Justice consumer fraud protection account to cover the legal expense of future fraud investigations.

According to Kristina Edmunson, a spokesperson with the Oregon Department of Justice, 13,015 Oregonians who bought, leased or sold the vehicles in question will benefit from the other $68 million portion of the settlements. They will get at least $5,100 each, plus either a buy-back option or a modification to their current car’s emission control system.

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ATTORNEYS PRESS OREGON VW CASES AS CARMAKER PROPOSES EMISSION SCANDAL SETTLEMENT (Portland Tribune) http://portlandtribune.com/pt/9-news/312961-191696-attorneys-press-oregon-vw-cases-as-carmaker-proposes-emission-scandal-settlement

Lake Oswego attorney Tim Quenelle is waiting for the legal dust to settle before he celebrates  if you can call it that  Tuesday’s announcement by Volkswagen of America of its proposed $10 billion settlement in the German automaker’s diesel-emission scandal.

“I am impressed with Volkswagen’s ability to fess up and try to bring peace to the valley as quickly as they did,” says Quenelle, co-counsel on more than three dozen state and federal lawsuits brought by VW owners across Oregon who purchased the affected diesel models.

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CENTRAL OREGON JOB GROWTH TO LEAD THE STATE (Bend Bulletin)

http://www.bendbulletin.com/business/4464922-151/more-employment-growth-ahead-for-central-oregon?referrer=carousel10

Employment in Central Oregon has grown quickly over the last couple of years, and that trend is expected to continue over the next eight years, according to projections from the Oregon Employment Department.

Based on regional forecasts across the state, Central Oregon will see the highest percentage of employment growth, 16 percent, from 2014 to 2024.

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RULING ON VIRGINIA GOVERNOR COULD HAVE RIPPLE IN OREGON (Bend Bulletin)

http://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/4464991-151/story.html?referrer=carousel1

-Experts say prosecutors face a narrowed scope in influence-peddling cases like the one involving John Kitzhaber-

In the wake of a unanimous decision by the U.S. Supreme Court to vacate a corruption conviction against former Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, legal experts say federal prosecutors in Oregon face a narrowed scope in influence-peddling cases like the one involving John Kitzhaber.

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EDITORIAL: DONT BE STARRY-EYED ABOUT THE BETC — OPINION (Bend Bulletin) http://www.bendbulletin.com/opinion/4464770-151/editorial-dont-be-starry-eyed-about-the-betc

Oregons Department of Energy has come in for plenty of well-deserved criticism in recent years, most notably because of its mishandling of its Business Energy Tax Credit program. The problems were so bad the Legislature finally killed the program in 2014.

But BETC is not the only source of the departments woes.

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STUDENT DEBT & NEW GUN OWNER (Oregon Public Broadcasting) http://www.opb.org/radio/programs/thinkoutloud/segment/new-police-chief-student-debt-mobile-home-life/

Forty-two million Americans owe $1.3 trillion in student debt. We hear the story of Jackie Krowen, a Portland nurse who wishes she hadnt, as she put it, ruined her life with school. We also talk to Lance Williams, a reporter whose new story looks into the effects of student loan debt.

We asked our listeners for stories from people who had just bought a gun for the first time. Today we hear from a woman who lives in North Portland and just bought a gun for self-protection.

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BROWN NOT READY TO TAKE STANCE ON BUSINESS TAX MEASURE (Oregon Public Broadcasting) http://www.opb.org/news/series/election-2016/kate-brown-no-position-business-tax-measure-ip28/

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown said Tuesday that she will be taking a stance on a ballot measure that would raise taxes on businesses, but she’s not yet ready to do so.

The initiative, currently referred to as IP-28, has qualified for the November ballot. It would raise taxes on businesses with sales that exceed $25 million dollars, generating a projected $3 billion dollars per year in tax revenue.

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3 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT OREGON’S HIGH SCHOOL FUNDING INITIATIVE (Oregon Public Broadcasting) http://www.opb.org/news/series/election-2016/ip65-oregon-high-school-funding/

Initiative Petition 65 would direct about $800 annually to each Oregon high school student, aimed at addressing the state’s poor graduation rate and gaps in workforce.

Supporters say IP 65 aims to better engage and prepare teenagers to finish high school and set them on a successful course after they get high school diplomas. The initiative has three priorities: expand college credit offerings, offer more career-technical opportunities, and implement dropout prevention strategies to keep high schoolers from falling through the cracks.

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THINK TANK SAYS OREGON CORPORATIONS’ SHARE OF TAX BURDEN IS DECLINING (Northwest Public Radio) http://nwpr.org/post/think-tank-says-oregon-corporations-share-tax-burden-declining

Oregon corporations are paying a smaller portion of the state’s income and property taxes. That’s according to a newly released report from the left-leaning Oregon Center for Public Policy.

Policy analyst Tyler Mac Innis says corporations pay less today than they did 40 years ago.

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OREGON JUNIPER LOAN PROGRAM OFF TO SLOW START, BUT BACKERS REMAIN HOPEFUL (Capital Press) http://www.capitalpress.com/Timber/20160628/oregon-juniper-loan-program-off-to-slow-start-but-backers-remain-hopeful

A state loan program intended to jump start the Western juniper market has had only one applicant so far, and people in the industry say it remains stalled in a situation where good intentions and strong demand for juniper lumber arent matched by log supply and mill infrastructure.

Business Oregon, the state agency in charge of an $800,000 juniper fund approved by the 2015 state Legislature, recently tweaked the details of its loan program in an effort to provide better terms and spur more interest.

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OREGON COUNTYS GMO BAN RULING APPEALED (Capital Press) http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20160628/oregon-countys-gmo-ban-ruling-appealed

A ruling striking down the ban on genetically engineered crops in Josephine County, Ore., is being appealed by supporters of the ordinance.

The prohibition was passed by voters in 2014 but overturned in May by Josephine County Circuit Court Judge Pat Wolke, who held that state law clearly pre-empted local regulations of genetically modified organisms, or GMOs.

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APPEALS COURT: WASHINGTON MUST FIX SALMON-BLOCKING CULVERTS (Capital Press) http://www.capitalpress.com/Washington/20160628/appeals-court-washington-must-fix-salmon-blocking-culverts

In a case that could have big implications for dams and other development in the Northwest, a federal appeals court panel said Monday that Native American tribes have a right not only to fish for salmon, but for there to be salmon to catch  a ruling that affirms the duty of the United States to protect the habitat of the prized fish under treaties dating back more than 150 years.

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EOU LOOKS TO UMATILLA COUNTY AS IT WORKS TO INCREASE ENROLLMENT (East Oregonian) http://www.eastoregonian.com/eo/local-news/20160628/eou-looks-to-umatilla-county-as-it-works-to-increase-enrollment

Eastern Oregon University has struggled to find its footing over the past decade, but President Tom Insko said the university now has their feet beneath them and is heading in the right direction.

I like where Eastern is positioned, he said. We have a lot of work ahead of us, but thats OK.
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CASCADIA AFTERMATH AND UMATILLA COUNTY (East Oregonian) http://www.eastoregonian.com/eo/local-news/20160628/cascadia-aftermath-and-umatilla-county

When the big one hits Oregon, Hermiston residents will be facing weeks without electricity followed by a wave of up to 100,000 refugees from the west side of the state.

The implications are pretty tremendous for us, Eastern Oregon Telecom CEO Joe Franell told Hermiston Chamber of Commerce members at Tuesdays Business to Business luncheon.

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OUR VIEW: FIRE SEASON ARRIVES IN EASTERN OREGON — OPINION (East Oregonian) http://www.eastoregonian.com/eo/editorials/20160628/our-view-fire-season-arrives-in-eastern-oregon

Fire season officially kicked off Tuesday in Eastern Oregon.

It has already been a brutal start to the season elsewhere across the West: Two people were killed in California wildfires that have burned about 100,000 acres. Other dangerous and destructive fires have flared up in Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Montana and Utah.
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HARNEY COUNTY KEEPS JUDGE WHO BLOCKED REFUGE OCCUPIERS (Argus Observer) http://www.argusobserver.com/news/harney-county-keeps-judge-who-blocked-refuge-occupiers/article_2827d4e4-3df9-11e6-ad82-d37ae3a32a1b.html

Residents of a remote county in eastern Oregon where an armed group seized a federal wildlife refuge have voted overwhelmingly to keep in office a top local official who had denied the occupiers access to a county building.

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MEDICAL CARE IS 1ST DEFENSE AGAINST TOXIC STRESS — GUEST OPINION (Argus Observer) http://www.argusobserver.com/opinion/medical-care-is-st-defense-against-toxic-stress/article_c14d7202-3d4d-11e6-a215-eb5a5f7ce9b7.html

Children dont choose to have asthma or depression, to be obese, hyperactive or abused. But they frequently develop these health problems, and many others, when they are raised in environments with chronic levels of stress.

Doctors in training in St. Louis are learning about the toxic effects of stress on children, and the grim health statistics for adults who experienced traumatic childhood events.

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NEW FIRE-SEASON REGS TAKE EFFECT THURSDAY (Medford Mail Tribune) http://www.mailtribune.com/news/20160628/new-fire-season-regs-take-effect-thursday

New fire-season regulations will go into effect Thursday on Oregon Department of Forestry lands in Jackson and Josephine counties because of hot and dry weather.

Campfires will be allowed only in designated campgrounds. Motorized vehicles will be allowed only on improved roads, and smoking while traveling will be allowed only in enclosed vehicles on improved roads, according to a news release from ODF.

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BOAT MANAGERS RECOMMEND NO MOTOR BAN ON CHETCO RIVER (Medford Mail Tribune) http://www.mailtribune.com/news/20160628/boat-managers-recommend-no-motor-ban-on-chetco-river

State boating managers have recommended against banning motors on a 10-mile stretch of the Chetco River, calling it an “over-reaching measure” to settle conflicts between boat and bank anglers during the river’s winter steelhead season.

A staff report recommends that the Oregon State Marine Board reject the motor ban petition on driftboats because there is no justification for a motor ban based on safety, congestion or property-rights concerns.

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OUR VIEW: NO MORE DELAY ON DERELICT PROPERTIES — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune) http://www.mailtribune.com/opinion/20160629/our-view-no-more-delay-on-derelict-properties

It was good to hear a local banker say his industry supports the city’s efforts to clean up abandoned houses that are blighting neighborhoods, but the City Council should not be dissuaded from getting tough with negligent banks over concerns about how a proposed ordinance defines “ownership.”

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DIGS WILL UNCOVER HISTORY OF INDIAN WAR ON COAST (Medford Mail Tribune)

http://www.mailtribune.com/article/20160629/NEWS/160629653

On Feb. 22, 1856, dozens of pioneers were killed when the Rogue River Indian War that had been raging in the Rogue Valley spread to the Oregon Coast.

On that day, the Tututni Indians launched coordinated attacks on pioneer settlements between Port Orford and the California border. The violence of the attack and the actions that followed affected everyone from a recent German immigrant family to an African-American settler to American Indians.

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NEW HEALTH DIRECTOR TAKES THE REINS (Herald and News) http://www.heraldandnews.com/news/local_news/community/new-health-director-takes-the-reins/article_81d2cf08-788c-5973-8ac4-d700229849cb.html

-New health director takes the reins-

Courtney Vanbragt will be the new Klamath County public health director starting July 1, replacing Marilynn Sutherland who is retiring after serving for 16 years as director.

Vanbragt has worked as the Klamath County Health Department program manager for 10 months, has a Bachelor of Science in health studies, a masters in international health and a minor in biology.

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COOS BAY PREPARES FOR DISASTER (The World) http://theworldlink.com/news/local/coos-bay-prepares-for-disaster/article_d5759cbc-75ab-59fd-be62-0c3c63ba6489.html

-North Bend, Bandon, and Coos Bay talk about emergency plans-

The cities of North Bend and Coos Bay recently purchased emergency supplies in case of a disaster. Though this isn’t new for North Bend, it is the first year that Coos Bay has chosen to prepare.

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WE CAN’T EXPERIMENT WITH WASTEWATER — GUEST OPINION (The World) http://theworldlink.com/news/opinion/local/we-can-t-experiment-with-wastewater/article_aef6ca34-c9b2-5858-8a5c-18af8cf334cc.html

As individuals we make decisions every day, and we face the consequences of those decisions. As elected officials, our decisions have lasting consequences not only on us as individuals but on all of the citizens we serve.

The Coos Bay City Council’s move towards privatizing our publicly owned wastewater facility has many consequences which will cost our community dearly for years to come, if accepted as the final plan.

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NOAA REMINDING PEOPLE NOT TO TOUCH OR PICK UP SEAL PUPS (The World) http://theworldlink.com/news/state-and-regional/noaa-reminding-people-not-to-touch-or-pick-up-seal/article_e6d79f0a-7902-5026-8585-a291ea157b9a.html

As harbor seals are being born in the Pacific Northwest, marine mammal advocates up and down the West Coast are urging people not to touch or pick up pups that come up on beaches and shorelines to rest.

At least five times this season, well-meaning people have illegally picked up seal pups in Oregon and Washington thinking they were abandoned or needed help, but that interference ultimately resulted in two deaths, said Michael Milstein, a spokesman with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Fisheries.

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WATER DISTRICT MOVES TO CLOSE ROAD OVER DAM (Daily Astorian) http://www.dailyastorian.com/Local_News/20160628/water-district-moves-to-close-road-over-dam

The Skipanon Water Control District will barricade a gravel road over the Eighth Street Dam to reduce liability while hoping to close the dam by the end of 2018.

Within several days, drivers will encounter a barrier made of two concrete blocks joined by a chain and padlock, along with reflective signage to warn them off.
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MARITIME WEIGH-IN RULE DISPUTE APPEARS RESOLVED (Daily Astorian) http://www.dailyastorian.com/Local_News/20160628/maritime-weigh-in-rule-dispute-appears-resolved

The possibility of slowdowns again plaguing West Coast seaports was averted when ocean carriers agreed this month to accept combined cargo-container weights from marine terminals instead of requiring them from exporters.

The Ocean Carrier Equipment Management Association, a U.S.-based association of 19 major ocean carriers, announced its decision at the Agriculture Transportation Coalitions annual meeting in Long Beach.

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EDITORIAL: TIME TO ALLOW POT TO JOIN REAL WORLD — OPINION (Daily Astorian) http://www.dailyastorian.com/editorials/20160628/editorial-time-to-allow-pot-to-join-real-world

-Federal regulations are less and less tenable-

Legal marijuana is big business in the Pacific Northwest, quickly achieving a scale that belies its continuing image as a commodity coaxed into life by aging hippies and Millennial stoners. In fact, 21st century marijuana has about as much in common with its cottage-industry antecedents as Napa Valley vineyards have with French villagers stomping grapes.

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EDITORIAL: FIRE SEASON GETS ROLLING IN OREGON — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald) http://democratherald.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-fire-season-gets-rolling-in-oregon/article_8d66d7f2-c882-5b55-bf6d-3032e8b14659.html

Here’s something to think about as you stand in line at the fireworks stand this year:

Just as the Independence Day holiday has rolled around again, so has fire season in Oregon.

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MERKLEY TALKS FIRE COSTS (Baker City Herald) http://www.bakercityherald.com/news/4462091-151/merkley-talks-fire-costs

Before fielding questions from an audience of about 50 during his town hall Saturday at Haines Elementary School, U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., talked about his efforts to change how the country pays to fight wildfires.

Merkley said the U.S. Forest Service has had to halt other projects, including work designed to reduce the risk of fires, because firefighting had depleted the agencys budget.
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IS SCHOOL WATER SAFE? (Blue Mountain Eagle) http://www.bluemountaineagle.com/Local_News/20160628/is-school-water-safe

Local schools are testing their water taps for lead, joining a scramble of other Oregon districts who are doing the same.

Schools are hurrying to test in the wake of large amounts of lead found in the Flint, Michigan, city water supply and, more recently, in Portland public schools.

Federal law does not require schools test for lead. Although the Oregon Board of Education is working on a new rule, current Oregon law only requires schools with their own water supply to test.

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UNEMPLOYMENT RATE DROPS TO 7.6 PERCENT (Blue Mountain Eagle) http://www.bluemountaineagle.com/Local_News/20160628/unemployment-rate-drops-to-76-percent

Grant County experienced its lowest unemployment rate for the month of May this year since 2007.

The seasonally adjusted rate fell from 8.8 percent in May of 2015 to 7.6 percent in May of 2016, according to an economic indicators report released by the Oregon Employment Department Tuesday.

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FIVE-YEAR POPULATION CHANGE IN EASTERN OREGON (Blue Mountain Eagle) http://www.bluemountaineagle.com/Local_News/20160628/five-year-population-change-in-eastern-oregon

There are two components of population change: natural increase and net migration. Natural increase is the number of births in an area minus the number of deaths. And net migration is the number of people who moved into an area minus the number of people who moved out. Both of these components varied widely across Eastern Oregon counties from 2010 to 2015, resulting in stark differences in population change.

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SECRETARY OF THE INTERIOR JEWELL DESIGNATES NEWEST NATIONAL NATURAL LANDMARK (LaGrande Observer)

http://www.lagrandeobserver.com/news/local/4464169-151/secretary-of-the-interior-jewell-designates-newest-national?referrer=carousel1

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell has designated the nations newest national natural landmark  Mount Howard-East Peak National Natural Landmark in Northeastern Oregon.

The site is an example of Montane Grasslands.

Mount Howard-East Peak National Natural Landmark is the 598th national natural landmark.

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FOREST GROUP CONSIDERS PROJECT PLANNING (LaGrande Observer)

http://www.lagrandeobserver.com/news/local/4462454-151/forest-group-considers-project-planning?referrer=carousel5

High up Big Canyon Road outside of Minam, members of the Wallowa-Whitman Forest Collaborative gazed into the Eagle Cap Wilderness. From where the group ate lunch they could see clear evidence of wildfire, timber harvest and a ponderosa pine plantation. Once grazed by livestock, the allotment is long overdue for an updated environmental analysis.

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LOGGING MISHAP LEAVES 1 DEAD (LaGrande Observer)

http://www.lagrandeobserver.com/news/4462444-151/logging-mishap-leaves-1-dead?referrer=carousel6

-Patrick Corley, died Friday in a logging accident outside of Cove, according to UCSO-

A Pendleton man was killed Friday in a logging accident outside of Cove, according to Union County Sheriffs Sgt. Nick Pallis.

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COUGAR APPEARS AT FAIRGROUNDS (LaGrande Observer)

http://www.lagrandeobserver.com/news/local/4462002-151/cougar-appears-at-fairgrounds?referrer=carousel11

A cougar was spotted Monday morning at the Union County Fairgrounds.

The cougar was seen running south from the main stage at the fairgrounds around 8:45 a.m. The individual who saw the cougar took a video of it.

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SPRING CHINOOK FISHING OPENS SATURDAY ON WALLOWA RIVER (LaGrande Observer) http://www.lagrandeobserver.com/news/4461777-151/spring-chinook-fishing-opens-saturday-on-wallowa-river

A significant upturn in the forecasted run to the Lostine River prompted ODFW to open the Wallowa River Saturday   for hatchery spring Chinook fishing. Anglers will be able to fish salmon from the deadline at the lower end of Minam State Park upstream to the mouth of the Lostine River.

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TOWN HALL AIMS TO BOOST TOURISM IN DOUGLAS COUNTY (Douglas County News-Review) http://www.nrtoday.com/business/local_biz/town-hall-aims-to-boost-tourism-in-douglas-county/article_2c9edf22-3d5e-11e6-a3ac-8f53a8d9a9e2.html

To share their priorities and better understand the role of travel and tourism in Oregon, community leaders from around Douglas County gathered together at the Public Safety Center in Roseburg for a town hall meeting on Monday afternoon.

Travel Oregon is hosting these meetings around the state to seek input regarding the most effective ways to enhance the economic impact of the tourism industry.

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STATE IRRIGATION PROGRAM RECEIVES NATIONAL CONSERVATION AWARD (Wallowa.com) http://www.wallowa.com/local_news/20160628/state-irrigation-program-receives-national-conservation-award

Energy Trust of Oregon and Farmers Conservation Alliance FCA recently announced that their Irrigation Modernization Program received the 2016 State Leadership in Clean Energy Award given by the Clean Energy States Alliance CESA.

The national award recognizes the coordinated and comprehensive approach developed by Energy Trust and FCA to help irrigation districts and the farmers they serve develop modern irrigation systems that can save billions of gallons of water annually.

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PRIME WORKING AGE OREGON MALES– BLOG (Oregon Office of Economic Analysis) https://oregoneconomicanalysis.com/2016/06/28/prime-working-age-oregon-males/

The Oregon economy is nearing full employment, a milestone not seen since 2000. According to our offices Total Employment Gap, the one remaining part that is not fully healed is the participation gap.

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WASHINGTON RESIDENTS WISH THEY STILL HAD STATE LIQUOR STORES (Willamette Week) http://www.wweek.com/news/2016/06/28/new-study-shows-washington-residents-wish-they-still-had-state-liquor-stores/

-As Oregon continues to mull privatizing liquor sales, a new study shows the experience to the north has been rocky.-

Since Washington voters approved the privatization the sale of hard liquor in 2011, the Oregon grocery industry, with help from national liquor interests, has pushed to do the same.

In 2014, proponents of privatization failed to qualify for the ballot, despite spending $2.5 million. Earlier this year, they pulled the plug on a second attempt, after spending $1 million.

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THE STRAWBERRY DEFINED OREGON. BUT IS IT GOING AWAY? (Willamette Week) http://www.wweek.com/news/2016/06/28/the-strawberry-defined-oregon-but-is-it-going-away/

-The Oregon strawberry may get squished by sturdier competition from California.-

Maria Gonzalez grasped the stem of a ripe Puget Crimson strawberry under a steady drizzle of June rain. With her thumb and forefinger, she pinched the stalk above the strawberry’s cap, breaking the stem.

It was the third week of Oregon’s 2016 strawberry harvesta 20-week window that started in mid-May and will trickle into October.

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A MALTESE COMPANY WANTS OVERSEAS PLAYERS TO BUY MILLIONS OF OREGON LOTTERY TICKETS (Willamette Week) http://www.wweek.com/news/2016/06/28/a-maltese-company-wants-overseas-players-to-buy-millions-of-oregon-lottery-tickets/

-The controversial idea may have helped doom former lottery chief Jack Roberts.-

Playing the Oregon Lottery? You may soon face new competitionfrom ticket buyers around the globe.

On June 27, the Lottery Commission considered a pitch from the Lotter, a Malta-based website that sells lottery tickets from all over the world. The Lotter wants two rule changes that would allow overseas players to buy as many Oregon Lottery tickets as they want without leaving their home countries.

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BREAKING FROM CUSTOM, ONE SMALL OREGON FARM PAYS PICKERS BY THE HOUR (Willamette Week) http://www.wweek.com/news/2016/06/29/breaking-from-custom-one-small-oregon-farm-pays-pickers-by-the-hour/

-“It can be done,” says farmer Javier Lara. “We’re an example.”-

Add this to the many pressures facing the Oregon strawberry: a growing clamor to stabilize wages for migrant workers whose sweat brings Americans their food.

Unlike a lot of fruits and even other berries, strawberries must be handpicked, which makes labor one of the biggest costs of doing business for farmers.

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STRAWBERRY SHORTHAND: A FIELD GUIDE TO OREGON AND CALIFORNIA STRAWBERRIES (Willamette Week) http://www.wweek.com/news/2016/06/28/strawberry-shorthand-a-field-guide-to-oregon-and-california-strawberries/

-How do Oregon’s top strawberries compare with California’s varieties?-

The strawberries Oregon grows are the nation’s reddest, sweetest and most fragile. Horticulture professors at Washington State University track annual strawberry plant sales in the Pacific Northwest. Here are the five most popular varieties grown in Oregon.

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MORE THAN 5,300 U.S. WATER SYSTEMS VIOLATED LEAD-TESTING RULES LAST YEAR (Washington Post) https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/to-your-health/wp/2016/06/28/more-than-5000-u-s-water-systems-violated-lead-testing-rules-last-year/?tid=sm_fb

If you think Flint, Mich., is the only place in the United States threatened by lead-contaminated water, think again.

The beleaguered city continues to grapple with the fallout of a drinking-water crisis that exposed its residents —  including 9,000 children 6 and younger — to a toxic substance that can cause learning disabilities, behavioral problems and other serious health issues. But while Flint might be an extreme example, a report released Tuesday by the Natural Resources Defense Council details how many other communities around the country are failing to adequately ensure that their water supplies remain free of lead.

Ed. Note:

NRDC Report can be found at:

https://www.nrdc.org/resources/whats-your-water-flint-and-beyond

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 29, 2016 eClips

June 28, 2016 OSL eClips

* Bullseye Glass fined for illegally dumping big glass shards in sewer
* Oregon Department of Energy director calls tax credits an economic development success
* University of Oregon gets $6 million gift for speech, family therapy clinic
* Immigration easy scapegoat on environment — Guest Opinion
* Intel must follow through on commitment to clean air — Guest Opinion
* Oregon wins $4.9 million to help a handful of low-performing schools improve
* Local marijuana edibles market expands, expected to grow state revenue
* Federal agency won’t include pot in annual crop statistics
* Oregon should take oil trains to court — Opinion
* A high bar for corruption — Opinion
* McDonnell Supreme Court ruling may be ‘good day’ for Kitzhaber sort of
* Our View: Legislature seeks transportation solutions — Guest Opinion
* My View: State’s economy – weeds in rose garden? — Opinion
* Bills in Congress worry outdoor groups
* How does Mondays U.S. Supreme Court ruling impact Oregon?
* Horse spaying proposals draw backlash
* Editorial: Oregon government is not transparent, its opaque — Opinion
* Editorial: State should not pick businesses to advertise for — Opinion
* Editorial: Wild horse policy is not working — Opinion
* Supreme Court Ruling Could Affect Investigation Into Kitzhaber, Hayes
* Oregon Lawmakers Grill State Energy Department’s Leader
* Oregon Approves Legacy And PacificSource Merger
* Minimum Wage Police Chief Retires Talking Business Editorial Changes
* NW ag, forestry, fisheries pack economic punch
* BLM to sterilize mustangs for first time to slow growth
* Researcher: Environmental analysis crucial as pot laws liberalize
* DAs office checking open cases for evidence of technician tampering
* Local police use science to protect domestic violence victims
* Land use board to hear Costco appeal Friday
* Our View: Regulation run amok at KOGAP mill site — Opinion
* School given earthquake upgrade grant
* Lead tests on schools in safe zone
* Kingsley Field marks two anniversaries
* Editorial: Forecasting ocean conditions is smart — Opinion
* Editorial: The road to recovery in Harney County — Opinion
* Douglas County schools to spend summer testing for lead
* Take a Close Look: What’s Wrong with This Oregon Coast Wave?
* Record year for Oregon big game raffles, auctions
* The Fourth: Oregon’s deadliest holiday for impaired driving
* Wyden, Merkley, gov hail Supreme Court ruling on Texas abortion law
* Oregon ranked second among states smoking the most marijuana

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BULLSEYE GLASS FINED FOR ILLEGALLY DUMPING BIG GLASS SHARDS IN SEWER (Portland Oregonian)

Bullseye Glass, the company at the center of air pollution concerns in Southeast Portland, faces a $300 fine from the city of Portland for dumping large shards of glass into city sewers.

Though records show state regulators had been aware of concerns about dumping by Bullseye, they weren’t raised until the company’s air pollution caused a scare earlier this year.

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OREGON DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY DIRECTOR CALLS TAX CREDITS AN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SUCCESS (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon Department of Energy director Michael Kaplan told lawmakers on Monday that a controversial energy tax credit program was an economic development success, despite allegations of fraud and the department’s failure to accurately track key performance data.

Kaplan’s statement to the legislative committee looking into whether to overhaul or eliminate the department came days after the Department of Justice served subpoenas on energy department employees in the ongoing fraud investigation.

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UNIVERSITY OF OREGON GETS $6 MILLION GIFT FOR SPEECH, FAMILY THERAPY CLINIC (Portland Oregonian)

A University of Oregon clinic staffed by graduate students that offers low-cost family and couples therapy and help for Eugene-Springfield residents with speech language issues received a $6 million gift this week.

UO’s College of Education said Tuesday it received a $6 million donation to help endow the clinic and provide community services.

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IMMIGRATION EASY SCAPEGOAT ON ENVIRONMENT — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

I work for the conservation organization Oregon Wild. We’ve been around for over 40 years working to protect and restore the wild places in our state. Ask us how many national parks there are in Oregon, what unprotected places in the state deserve wilderness designation, or how to reduce conflict between wolves and livestock, and we know the answer.

Ask us about immigration reform? Suffice it to say that’s not a topic that comes up every day at the office.

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INTEL MUST FOLLOW THROUGH ON COMMITMENT TO CLEAN AIR — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

I read many kind and sometimes critical remembrances of Andy Grove’s leadership of Intel. Grove’s book, “Only the Paranoid Survive,” is about his self-described paranoia and worry about winning. He wanted to put a silver bullet into Intel’s competitors. My concern is that Grove’s success did not take into account protection of the air, water and land for current and future generations. Winning isn’t everything.

Thomas R. Wood, Intel’s attorney, reported that Intel would submit a prevention of significant deterioration PSD air quality permit, the strictest permit available from among Department of Environmental Quality DEQ permits.

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OREGON WINS $4.9 MILLION TO HELP A HANDFUL OF LOW-PERFORMING SCHOOLS IMPROVE (Portland Oregonian)

The U.S. Department of Education has awarded Oregon $4.9 million to help a handful of schools with persistently low student achievement to improve.

Roughly nine schools will be chosen in January to receive the money over the course of about four years, said Tim Boyd, director of district and school effectiveness. Only those who were put on a list of “priority” and “focus” schools based on poor performance in 2011 and 2012 are eligible to apply, he said.

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LOCAL MARIJUANA EDIBLES MARKET EXPANDS, EXPECTED TO GROW STATE REVENUE (Salem Statesman Journal)

Manufacturers of marijuana infused chocolate bars and gummy bears are ramping up production after an encouraging start to sales for recreational use.

The Oregon Legislative Revenue office expects a 10 to 15 percent increase in collected taxes for June recreational sales, following the rollout of edibles to recreational markets on June 2.

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FEDERAL AGENCY WON’T INCLUDE POT IN ANNUAL CROP STATISTICS (Salem Statesman Journal)

Sales and tax figures collected by state agencies may finally solve one of Oregon’s long-running farm crop questions: whether marijuana is indeed the state’s most valuable crop, as cannabis advocates have always maintained.

Tight controls and reporting requirements by the Oregon Department of Revenue and Oregon Liquor Control Commission should result in accurate information about pot, said Bruce Pokarney, spokesman for the state Department of Agriculture. The department compiles an annual list of the state’s most valuable crops.

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OREGON SHOULD TAKE OIL TRAINS TO COURT — OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)

Oregon must do more than demand action to prevent oil-train spills in the Columbia Gorge. Oregon must take action itself.

So says Senate President Peter Courtney. He told the Statesman Journal Editorial Board on Monday that the state should seek a federal court injunction to halt oil trains that comprise outmoded tank cars.

It’s a legal gamble worth taking.

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A HIGH BAR FOR CORRUPTION — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

On those increasingly rare moments when Oregonians’ thoughts turn to John Kitzhaber, they may wonder why it’s taking so long for the FBI to complete its investigation of the influence-peddling allegations that drove the former governor from office early last year. One possibility is that the bureau has been waiting for a U.S. Supreme Court decision in a case involving another former governor, Bob McDonnell of Virginia. The decision came Monday, and the ruling makes it much harder to prosecute public officials for corruption.

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MCDONNELL SUPREME COURT RULING MAY BE ‘GOOD DAY’ FOR KITZHABER SORT OF (Portland Tribune)

It’s probably too early to celebrate, but former Gov. John Kitzhaber might benefit from Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision overturning the September 2014 bribery conviction of former Virginia Gov. Robert F. McDonnell.

Lewis & Clark Law School professor Tung Yin says the Supreme Court’s June 27 ruling sets a higher bar for some official corruption cases, which could have an impact on any federal investigation into Kitzhaber’s dealings with environmental organizations that employed his fianc, Cylvia Hayes.

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OUR VIEW: LEGISLATURE SEEKS TRANSPORTATION SOLUTIONS — GUEST OPINION (Portland Tribune)

Members of the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Transportation Preservation and Modernization recently traveled throughout the East Portland metro area, observing traffic congestion challenges, seismic safety issues, and the need for multimodal infrastructure in the region.

As co-chairs of the committee, which is charged with identifying transportation priorities and developing a transportation package next session, we are working hard to create opportunities across the state for local leaders and community members to tell us about their transportation needs.

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MY VIEW: STATE’S ECONOMY – WEEDS IN ROSE GARDEN? — OPINION (Portland Tribune)

Have you heard? Everything is coming up roses in Oregon. “All good news” according to the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis. The roses: a 4.5 percent unemployment rate, 5,000 jobs added per month for the past two years, gains in wages and personal income, general fund revenue growth, and increased lottery sales.

I don’t want to rain on our parade, but I, for one, see some weeds in the rose garden, and their roots go deep. Yes, many numbers coming out of economic research are showing positive trends at the national, state and local levels. But numbers coming out of opinion research paint a very different picture of Oregon’s economy.

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BILLS IN CONGRESS WORRY OUTDOOR GROUPS (Bend Bulletin)

-Proposals would let states manage parts of federal forests-

Proposed bills aiming to let states manage segments of federal forestlands so they can produce more timber have drawn concerns from outdoor recreation and fishing groups. They warn the move would prioritize timber over other uses, circumvent current planning processes, restrict public access and pave the way toward privatizing public lands.

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HOW DOES MONDAYS U.S. SUPREME COURT RULING IMPACT OREGON? (Bend Bulletin)

-Oregon’s abortion laws unrestricted but opinions remain divided-

Although the U.S. Supreme Court overturned imposing stricter abortion laws in Texas on Monday, Oregon’s access to abortion continues to be much easier than other states.

Oregon is one of the few states in the U.S. without any restrictions to receive an abortion, Mary Nolan, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon, said. Women are not limited by age, parental involvement, waiting periods, physician or hospital requirements, gestation limitations or public funding, all common restrictions in other states

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HORSE SPAYING PROPOSALS DRAW BACKLASH (Bend Bulletin)

-Horse groups call for birth control vaccine instead-

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management and Oregon State University plan to remove the ovaries of 100 wild horses as part of a research effort, drawing a nonprofit horse group to immediately denounce it as a barbaric, dangerous procedure.

The group also questioned why the agency doesnt instead use an existing vaccine that works as effective birth control on the horses.

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EDITORIAL: OREGON GOVERNMENT IS NOT TRANSPARENT, ITS OPAQUE — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Oregon’s Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum has a task force that has been holding meetings about changes needed to improve the states public records law.

Heres yet another example of why that matters. Oregons Department of Environmental Quality served up a lesson in how to make it difficult for the public to find out about Portlands air pollution.

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EDITORIAL: STATE SHOULD NOT PICK BUSINESSES TO ADVERTISE FOR — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

And here’s another thing about the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality: If the DEQ wants to endorse something, it should be by adopting policies and programs to protect the environment.

Oregon’s DEQ should not be picking winners and losers in executive education courses. And yet, it did.

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EDITORIAL: WILD HORSE POLICY IS NOT WORKING — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Members of the U.S. House of Representatives Subcommittee on Federal Lands got an earful last week when they held a hearing on the status of wild horses and burros in the West. The bottom line: There’s nothing humane about the status quo.

Some 67,000 horses roam Western rangeland, some 250 percent of the 26,800 the land can actually support, the committee learned.

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SUPREME COURT RULING COULD AFFECT INVESTIGATION INTO KITZHABER, HAYES (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

A U.S. Supreme Court ruling in a federal corruption case involving the former governor of Virginia could have implications in Oregon.

The high court Monday overturned the 2014 conviction of Virginia’s Bob McDonnell, who was accused with his wife of accepting gifts in exchange for political favors. The court ruled prosecutors failed to connect those gifts and specific actions which happened as a result.

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OREGON LAWMAKERS GRILL STATE ENERGY DEPARTMENT’S LEADER (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Oregon lawmakers continued to debate the future of the state’s Department of Energy on Monday, when a special legislative panel grilled the leader of that agency against the backdrop of a potential criminal investigation.

The joint House and Senate Legislative Committee on Department of Energy Oversight has been meeting since January to review the Department of Energy’s programs. Legislative leaders have made it clear that the agency’s very existence is up for debate.

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OREGON APPROVES LEGACY AND PACIFICSOURCE MERGER (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

The Oregon Insurance Division has approved a merger between two of Portland’s major health care companies: Legacy Health and PacificSource.

The merger involves Legacy buying a 50 percent stake in PacificSource at a cost of more than $247 million.

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MINIMUM WAGE POLICE CHIEF RETIRES TALKING BUSINESS EDITORIAL CHANGES (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

This Friday, workers in minimum wage jobs will get paid more. We’ll find out the details of the new law.

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NW AG, FORESTRY, FISHERIES PACK ECONOMIC PUNCH (Capital Press)

A new university study finds the natural resources sector in the Northwest fuels more than $176 million in direct and related sales and accounts for nearly 886,000 full and part-time jobs.

The study, commissioned by Northwest Farm Credit Services and performed by extension economists at Oregon State University and the University of Idaho, found agriculture, forestry and fisheries account for 10.6 percent of all jobs in the five-state region and 12.2 percent of all sales in 2015.

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BLM TO STERILIZE MUSTANGS FOR FIRST TIME TO SLOW GROWTH (Capital Press)

A federal agency is on a path to sterilize wild horses on U.S. rangeland to slow the growth of herds  a new approach condemned by mustang advocates across the West.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management also continues to resist calls from ranchers and western Republicans to euthanize or sell for slaughter the animals overflowing holding pens so as to clear the way for more roundups.

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RESEARCHER: ENVIRONMENTAL ANALYSIS CRUCIAL AS POT LAWS LIBERALIZE (Capital Press)

As marijuana laws liberalize across the country, much attention will need to be given to the impact that large-scale production could have on the environment, a pair of university scientists assert.

Existing cannabis grow sites pose a high risk of ecological consequences because they potentially use large amounts of water and are near the habitat for threatened species, researchers Van Butsic and Jacob Brenner observe.

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DAS OFFICE CHECKING OPEN CASES FOR EVIDENCE OF TECHNICIAN TAMPERING (East Oregonian)

The Umatilla County District Attorneys Office continues to investigate to what extent a crime lab technicians drug tampering affected 1,354 cases.

District Attorney Dan Primus said he has one deputy prosecutor handling the work and did not know when the project will finish. These are open cases, he said, and his office has dismissed some and declined to prosecute others that forensic analyst Nika Larsen worked on, but he said he did not know how many.
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LOCAL POLICE USE SCIENCE TO PROTECT DOMESTIC VIOLENCE VICTIMS (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Red flags in victim questionnaire identify potential killers-

After Andrew David Moffatt threw his wife to the ground and kicked her in the face and chest, breaking her nose and a rib, Medford police used a new tool to assess whether Moffatt might severely harm or even murder her in the future.

The research-based Domestic Violence Lethality Screen for First Responders questionnaire helps police identify victims of domestic violence who are at the greatest risk of being seriously injured or killed by their partners.

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LAND USE BOARD TO HEAR COSTCO APPEAL FRIDAY (Medford Mail Tribune)

The Land Use Board of Appeals will hear arguments Friday in an appeal of Central Point City Council’s approval for construction of a Costco Warehouse.

Land-use planner Calvin Martin of Jacksonville and retired Ashland lawyer Mark Haneberg are asking LUBA to overturn the City Council’s approval of Costco’s conditional use permit application in March.

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OUR VIEW: REGULATION RUN AMOK AT KOGAP MILL SITE — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)

Nine years.

If anyone asks you for an example of environmental regulations run amok, point them to Stewart Meadows Village, the new development soon to take shape on the old Kogap mill site between Garfield Street and Stewart Avenue off South Pacific Highway.

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SCHOOL GIVEN EARTHQUAKE UPGRADE GRANT (Herald and News)

Klamath County School District approved a $1.49 million seismic rehabilitation grant for Peterson Elementary School during a special board meeting Monday.

KCSD has until May 25, 2018, to complete the project.
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LEAD TESTS ON SCHOOLS IN SAFE ZONE (Herald and News)

-More County school, facility results to come-

The lead and copper levels tested in four Klamath County schools water were found well below what the Environmental Protection Agency considers dangerous, according to a Klamath County School District.

KCSD is testing all schools and facilities lead and copper levels.

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KINGSLEY FIELD MARKS TWO ANNIVERSARIES (Herald and News)

Against the backdrop of an American flag and the commemorative F-15 Eagle, Kingsley Field celebrated the 75th anniversary of the Oregon Air National Guard and the 20th anniversary of the activation of the 173rd Fighter Wing on Monday.

The ceremony showcased the history of the Oregon Air National Guard and the present mission at the unit.

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EDITORIAL: FORECASTING OCEAN CONDITIONS IS SMART — OPINION (Daily Astorian)

Were at the dawn of forecasting what to expect from the planets oceans. J-SCOPE, a collaboration between the University of Washington and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, is showing promise as a sophisticated way of looking into the previously blank slate of the Pacific Ocean offshore Oregon, Washington, Puget Sound and Canada’s Vancouver Island.

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EDITORIAL: THE ROAD TO RECOVERY IN HARNEY COUNTY — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

Harney County covers more than 10,000 square miles of eastern Oregon; it’s the largest county in the state.

With only about 7,100 residents, it also has fewer than one resident per square mile.

So it’s a fair bet that the 41-day occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by activists protesting federal land policies will be the talk of the county for some time. You don’t recover from this sort of event overnight.

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DOUGLAS COUNTY SCHOOLS TO SPEND SUMMER TESTING FOR LEAD (Douglas County News-Review)

Douglas County schools will spend the summer testing for lead after the national spotlight exposed alarming levels of the heavy metal in Flint, Michigan and in Portland.

Gerry Washburn, superintendent for Roseburg Public Schools, said the district will be testing every spigot where students could drink water or access water for cooking in all 11 schools. The results of those tests are expected to be released by the end of August.

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TAKE A CLOSE LOOK: WHAT’S WRONG WITH THIS OREGON COAST WAVE? (Oregon Coast Beach Connection)

Take a close look at this picture of a wave in Lincoln City. Can you spot what’s wrong with it?

Hint: notice the direction.

If you guessed the wave is going the wrong way, you’re right. It should be coming into shore  not outgoing. And no, the photo is not altered or flipped.

So what causes this? It’s a quirky example of the science of summer on the Oregon coast.

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RECORD YEAR FOR OREGON BIG GAME RAFFLES, AUCTIONS (Wallowa.com)

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife’s 2016 auctions and raffles for Oregon big game hunting tags grossed a record $755,963, of which $537,816 will go to the Access and Habitat Program and $218,147 to big game research and management.

Winners of the special tags enjoy an extended season and expanded hunt area.

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THE FOURTH: OREGON’S DEADLIEST HOLIDAY FOR IMPAIRED DRIVING (KTVZ Bend)

-Eight have died on highways last two years; legal marijuana brings new concern-

Oregon’s deadliest holiday for impaired driving is around the corner, the Oregon Department of Transportation warned Monday.

Eight people have died on Oregon roadways in alcohol-involved crashes in the last two years over the Fourth of July, and this year – with legalized marijuana now in the mix – the three-day-weekend could see the toll increased.

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WYDEN, MERKLEY, GOV HAIL SUPREME COURT RULING ON TEXAS ABORTION LAW (KTVZ Bend)

Sens. Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., hailed Monday’s U.S. Supreme Court decision striking down a Texas state law known as HB-2, which they said would have placed burdensome requirements on health care clinics and doctors who offer abortions.

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OREGON RANKED SECOND AMONG STATES SMOKING THE MOST MARIJUANA (Northwest Cable News)

Support for marijuana legalization in the United States has risen steadily over the years. Today, a majority of Americans are in favor of legalizing the drug, although the number of people actually smoking weed is far lower. Slightly more than 13 percent of Americans 12 years old and over report using marijuana in the past year.

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WHEN YOU DIAL 911 AND WALL STREET ANSWERS (New York Times)

-Since the 2008 financial crisis, private equity firms have increasingly taken over public services like emergency care and firefighting, often with dire effects.-

A Tennessee woman slipped into a coma and died after an ambulance company took so long to assemble a crew that one worker had time for a cigarette break.

Paramedics in New York had to covertly swipe medical supplies from a hospital to restock their depleted ambulances after emergency runs.

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 28, 2016 OSL eClips

June 27, 2016 eClips Weekend Edition

State Library eClips

* 6 things to know about Oregon’s new minimum wage law
* Something not in the air at Oregon’s environmental agency? Transparency
* Cowlitz casino on track, still stirring controversy
* Public receives extra 30 days to comment on Portland Harbor cleanup plan
* Better lifestyle or bankruptcy? Farms adjust to new minimum wage increase
* Oregon imprisons African Americans at a higher rate than most other states
* As subpoenas swirl, Kate Brown shares vision for reshaping energy agency
* Switch in ballot procedures has some worried about secrecy
* Dorm offers a new option for OSU students in recovery
* Eat invasive species and save Oregon’s natives
* Health advisory issued for Howard’s Bay in Upper Klamath Lake
* Labor goes on the offensive with corporate tax hike – Steve Duin
* Lawmakers are not misusing the emergency clause — Guest Opinion
* Pets not ‘mere’ property: Oregon Supreme Court upholds dog-starvation conviction
* Kate Brown commits to some debates: Editorial Peak — Opinion
* New tools join the fight against distracted driving
* West Salem agricultural burn raises questions
* 24-week guide; week No. 6
* Local woman wins emergency preparedness kit
* Oregon fines Coburg Road Quarry over spring discharge to McKenzie River
* Students opting out of state standardized test doubles in Springfield, Bethel districts
* Value of Oregon’s forests more than timber — Guest Opinion
* Reaping profits from the poor — Opinion
* Curbing mosquito-borne illness requires strategic approach — Guest Opinion
* EPA extends Superfund comment period until Sept. 6.
* Former legislator seeks to bring traffic back to port
* Northwest Natural estimates rate hike if IP 28 passes
* Hispanic population increases in Central Oregon
* Who’s covered by federal safety laws?
* Supreme Court deadlock leaves some Latinos in Central Oregon out of luck
* Portlanders blast EPA for Superfund cleanup plan
* Escaped inmate apprehended
* Surplus of jobs for grads may not be ones they want
* Major battle over oil terminal unfolds
* Fewer homebuyers paying cash in Bend
* Old Mill District named finalist for global award
* Editorial: Letting the neighbors know about ADU’s — Opinion
* Editorial: Keep pressure on USDA and bentgrass developer — Opinion
* Editorial: Robbing fire prevention to fight fires — Opinion
* What Does Brexit Mean For Oregon?
* Washington Governor Asks Union Pacific To Halt Oil Trains
* Oregon Zika Researchers Tell Senators They Need More Money
* Any impact of Brexit vote on ag likely to be temporary, experts say
* NW Natural says IP 28 will cause 2 percent rate hike
* Worker shortage coincides with immigration decline
* Officials split: Unfunded fiat or more money?
* What’s really driving this bill? — Opinion
* Oregon Recreational Marijuana Sales Continue To Exceed Expectations
* Governor misses chance to show leadership — Opinion
* Two CCO’s step up with $300,000 in grants
* Medford officials ramp up water testing in wake of lead pipe discoveries
* Guest Opinion: Fighting poverty with a paycheck in Klamath Falls — Guest Opinion
* Health advisory: Toxic algae confirmed in Howard Bay
* Date for public hearing on Stateline Compost set
* What one district’s data mining did for chronic absence
* Whitsett maneuver continues to roil Klamath politics — Opinion
* Council to meet to discuss ramifications of wastewater privatization
* Time to go to work, kids — Opinion
* Panelists at Ashland forum decry oil industry influence
* Fighting wildfires with ‘good fires’
* Danger on the rails — Opinion
* Railroad to replace bolts after Mosier derailment
* Jewel Road Fire near Dufur burns 31 acres Saturday
* WWNF revives logging project
* Knowing the cost of health care
* ODOT installing traffic light at Highway 30, McAlister
* MY VOICE: A first step but not enough — Guest Opinion
* Operation Dry Water this weekend
* No to oil trains — Opinion
* Another Voice: Trains in the Columbia Gorge are going in the wrong direction — Guest Opinion
* Douglas County jobless rate falls to new low
* Oregon sheriffs and police chiefs back Gov. Brown’s OSP superintendent pick — Guest Opinion
* Per-mile tax the future, not necessarily the now — Opinion
* Education advocates turn in signatures for Oregon funding measure
* Gov. Kate Browns Former Top Aide Goes to Work for a Hospital Chain
* OSP accepting applications online for new troopers

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6 THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT OREGON’S NEW MINIMUM WAGE LAW (Portland Oregonian)

More than 100,000 low-wage workers across Oregon will start to see a small bump in take-home pay on Friday when the state’s new minimum wage takes effect.

Oregon’s current $9.25-an-hour minimum wage, already one of the highest in the nation, will start looking radically different each July depending on where residents live and work.

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SOMETHING NOT IN THE AIR AT OREGON’S ENVIRONMENTAL AGENCY? TRANSPARENCY (Portland Oregonian)

When two Pacific Green Party activists set out two years ago to let people know who was responsible for Portland’s air pollution, they didn’t realize how hard it would be.

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COWLITZ CASINO ON TRACK, STILL STIRRING CONTROVERSY (Portland Oregonian)

Just 16 miles north of Portland, near the tiny Washington town of La Center, construction is roaring on what will become  by far  the metro area’s closest casino.

An army of workers has already completed the shell of the Cowlitz Tribe’s planned $510 million resort.

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PUBLIC RECEIVES EXTRA 30 DAYS TO COMMENT ON PORTLAND HARBOR CLEANUP PLAN (Portland Oregonian)

Sixty days just wasn’t long enough for the public to speak out on a proposed $746 million cleanup plan for the Willamette River, so the U.S. Environmental Agency on Friday extended its deadline 30 more days, to Sept. 6.

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BETTER LIFESTYLE OR BANKRUPTCY? FARMS ADJUST TO NEW MINIMUM WAGE INCREASE (Portland Oregonian)

Gustavo Velasco moved through a row of strawberries, crouching and quickly plucking several of the ripe fruit from the bush. He put them into a wheelbarrow and moved on. Around him, other men did the same, wearing hats to shade their faces from the sun.

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OREGON IMPRISONS AFRICAN AMERICANS AT A HIGHER RATE THAN MOST OTHER STATES (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon imprisons African Americans at a rate higher than most other states, a new report revealed this week.

For every 1,000 black residents, about 21 are in prison, the seventh-highest rate in the country.

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AS SUBPOENAS SWIRL, KATE BROWN SHARES VISION FOR RESHAPING ENERGY AGENCY (Portland Oregonian)

Days before lawmakers once again weigh the fate of Oregon’s embattled Department of Energy, Gov. Kate Brown sent top legislative Democrats her own vision for how reshape the agency.

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SWITCH IN BALLOT PROCEDURES HAS SOME WORRIED ABOUT SECRECY (Portland Oregonian)

Ever since Oregon approved voting exclusively by mail in 1998, Hasso Hering took comfort that a sealable “secrecy envelope” would guarantee his right to a private ballot.

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DORM OFFERS A NEW OPTION FOR OSU STUDENTS IN RECOVERY (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon State University will become the first in the state to offer housing for students battling drug or alcohol addiction. The new dorm, which will open this fall, is one way OSU is adapting to meet the needs of students recovering from addiction.

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EAT INVASIVE SPECIES AND SAVE OREGON’S NATIVES (Portland Oregonian)

Tom Kaye loved the triple threat louisiana crawdad dip alongside his fried frog legs and purple varnish clam chowder.

And the bacon-wrapped starling kabob in a blackberry reduction “was to die for,” said Kaye, executive director of the Institute for Applied Ecology in Corvallis.

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HEALTH ADVISORY ISSUED FOR HOWARD’S BAY IN UPPER KLAMATH LAKE (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon health officials have issued a health advisory for Howard’s Bay in Upper Klamath Lake.

Officials found toxic blue-green algae in the area, located in the southwest corner of the lake.

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LABOR GOES ON THE OFFENSIVE WITH CORPORATE TAX HIKE – STEVE DUIN (Portland Oregonian)

It may sound like a Silicon Valley vanity plate, but “IP 28” is a game-changing tax hike, one that will spark what state Sen. Mark Hass, D-Beaverton, calls “the most divisive political fight Oregon has ever seen.”

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LAWMAKERS ARE NOT MISUSING THE EMERGENCY CLAUSE — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

In their latest endorsement of Initiative Petition 49, The Oregonian/OregonLive editorial board claims the initiative is voters’ chance to put an end to lawmakers’ “misuse” of the emergency clause. Unfortunately, the piece fails to mention the most critical aspect of this ballot initiative: that by passing IP49, a key function of the state’s democratic process would be removed, ultimately leading to less progress for a state currently recognized as one of the country’s leaders.

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PETS NOT ‘MERE’ PROPERTY: OREGON SUPREME COURT UPHOLDS DOG-STARVATION CONVICTION (Portland Oregonian)

A Portland-area dog owner found guilty of starving her pet was rightfully convicted — even though a veterinarian gathered evidence against her by drawing the dog’s blood without a warrant, the Oregon Supreme Court ruled Thursday.

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KATE BROWN COMMITS TO SOME DEBATES: EDITORIAL PEAK — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

Gov. Kate Brown faced widespread criticism this week for skipping the election season’s traditional kick-off debate, hosted by the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association. That criticism seems to have hit home. On Thursday, her campaign announced plans to debate Republican opponent Bud Pierce beginning in September with the expectation that at least three of the events will be televised. Her campaign said additional debates will be considered “on a case-by-case basis.”

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NEW TOOLS JOIN THE FIGHT AGAINST DISTRACTED DRIVING (Portland Oregonian)

Andie Portie recalls the time her friend crashed a car into a fire hydrant.

The friend dropped a phone under the car seat and looked down to pick it up. The car swerved and went off the road, hitting the hydrant. The friend and a passenger were OK, she said, but the car was wrecked.

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WEST SALEM AGRICULTURAL BURN RAISES QUESTIONS (Salem Statesman Journal)

The acrid smoke interrupted breakfast. Residents could smell it before they saw it, a bitter aroma that filled their nostrils minutes before the gray-blue haze drifted across yards and into their West Salem kitchens.

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24-WEEK GUIDE; WEEK NO. 6 (Salem Statesman Journal)

This week’s emergency-preparedness kit additions are limited, but for good reason: disaster preparers will need to spend a little money on first-aid supplies.

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LOCAL WOMAN WINS EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS KIT (Salem Statesman Journal)

Laura Aspinwall isn’t telling her neighbors and friends that the sky is falling. But if walls should come crumbling down around her, she’ll be ready.

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OREGON FINES COBURG ROAD QUARRY OVER SPRING DISCHARGE TO MCKENZIE RIVER (Eugene Register-Guard)

A Coburg-area quarry faces a $22,675 fine for allowing muddy water to flow into the McKenzie River.

The state Department of Environmental Quality has issued the fine to Coburg Road Quarry for discharging untreated water from its site to the McKenzie River and operating without a discharge permit.

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STUDENTS OPTING OUT OF STATE STANDARDIZED TEST DOUBLES IN SPRINGFIELD, BETHEL DISTRICTS (Eugene Register-Guard)

-Eugene district also sees bump in numbers-

The number of students who chose to opt out of the states standardized Smarter Balanced tests in the Bethel and Springfield school districts more than doubled between the 2015-16 school year and the previous year, district officials say.

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VALUE OF OREGON’S FORESTS MORE THAN TIMBER — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

Born and raised in Creswell, I grew up reading The Register-Guard. Based on the newspapers June 12, 2016, editorial, Congress must act on O&C lands, I misread the date as 1986.

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REAPING PROFITS FROM THE POOR — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

The deal was controversial from the beginning. Trillium Community Health Plan, which provides taxpayer-funded health care to almost 100,000 low-income Lane County residents, was being sold by its owner, Agate Resources, to a Fortune 500 company for a large amount of money. Initial estimates of the price put it at $80 million to $130 million.

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CURBING MOSQUITO-BORNE ILLNESS REQUIRES STRATEGIC APPROACH — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

This years warm, wet spring seems to have brought with it more mosquitoes. With West Nile virus in Oregon and Zika slowly moving north, we have a window of opportunity to establish sound practices to manage the growing threat of mosquito-borne diseases. To wait invites an ill-conceived response that causes more harm than good.

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EPA EXTENDS SUPERFUND COMMENT PERIOD UNTIL SEPT. 6. (Portland Tribune)

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced on Friday that it is extending the comment period on its proposed cleanup plan for the Portland Harbor Superfund site until Sept. 6.

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FORMER LEGISLATOR SEEKS TO BRING TRAFFIC BACK TO PORT (Portland Tribune)

A tone of resignation could be discerned among reports last month that Westwood Shipping Lines, the only shipping company still serving the Port of Portlands Terminal 6, would discontinue service there.

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NORTHWEST NATURAL ESTIMATES RATE HIKE IF IP 28 PASSES (Portland Tribune)

Northwest Natural estimates it faces an $11 million to $14 million annual tax hike if a controversial corporate sales tax measure wins voter approval in November.

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HISPANIC POPULATION INCREASES IN CENTRAL OREGON (Bend Bulletin)

-U.S. Census Bureau estimates Hispanic numbers up 18 percent since 2010-

The Hispanic population in Central Oregon has continued to grow steadily in recent years, according to new U.S. Census Bureau population estimates released last week.

Many newcomers have likely moved to the region to work in construction or tourism as Central Oregon has bounced back from the Great Recession.

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WHO’S COVERED BY FEDERAL SAFETY LAWS? (Bend Bulletin)

-One mans fall raises questions about contract work on tribal lands-

Matt Fox told his supervisors that if no changes were made, one night an employee carrying buckets of fish across an unfinished bridge and down a steep, scree-covered trail leading down to Fifteenmile Creek would fall and be injured.

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SUPREME COURT DEADLOCK LEAVES SOME LATINOS IN CENTRAL OREGON OUT OF LUCK (Bend Bulletin)

-Thousands of undocumented immigrants in the area wont receive protection DAPA might have provided-

On Thursday evening, about 25 people met in a tucked-away prayer chapel at the back of the First Presbyterian Church in Bend to talk about immigration.

The meeting, put on by the Latino Community Association, had been planned for more than a month so that Latinos in Central Oregon, some of them undocumented, could have their questions answered about various immigration programs and options that could help lead to legal status.

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PORTLANDERS BLAST EPA FOR SUPERFUND CLEANUP PLAN (Bend Bulletin)

A 10-mile stretch of the Willamette River  the iconic body of water flowing directly through one of Americas most environmentally conscious cities  could soon be teeming with massive equipment and crews tasked with cleaning up more than a century’s worth of hazardous contaminants from industrial use.

The federal governments $746 million cleanup plan for Portland Harbor was revealed two weeks ago, ending a 16-year wait after the polluted area gained status as a Superfund site by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

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ESCAPED INMATE APPREHENDED (Bend Bulletin)

A Deer Ridge Correctional Institution inmate who walked away from an inmate work crew near Sisters Thursday was apprehended at about 1 p.m. Friday, according to the Oregon Department of Corrections.

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SURPLUS OF JOBS FOR GRADS MAY NOT BE ONES THEY WANT (Bend Bulletin)

It may be the best time to graduate from college since the Great Recession. The rate of unemployment for recent graduates is under 5 percent and job prospects are finally brightening.

But they’re still not great.

Since the recession, it has been hard for graduates to find jobs at their education level, and it still is.

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MAJOR BATTLE OVER OIL TERMINAL UNFOLDS (Bend Bulletin)

Two companies proposing to build what would be the nations largest oil-by-rail marine terminal along the Columbia River in Washington see it as an opportunity to link domestic crude oil from the Midwest to a West Coast port.

Critics, however, see an environmental and safety catastrophe waiting to happen, especially after a train carrying volatile Bakken crude oil derailed and burned on June 3 in Mosier, just 70 miles upriver from the project site in Vancouver, Washington.

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FEWER HOMEBUYERS PAYING CASH IN BEND (Bend Bulletin)

-Low interest rates, high prices are factors-

The number of cash buyers as a percentage of all homebuyers in Bend is on the decline, according to data from the Central Oregon Association of Realtors.

Homebuyers paying with cash represented 31 percent of all home purchases in Bend in 2011, the peak year for cash purchases, according to Multiple Listing Service of Central Oregon numbers. Through May of this year, cash buyers accounted for 24 percent of all Bend home sales. In 2015, they represented 23 percent.

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OLD MILL DISTRICT NAMED FINALIST FOR GLOBAL AWARD (Bend Bulletin)

The Old Mill District in Bend is one of 26 developments around the world selected as finalists for the Urban Land Institutes 2016 Global Awards for Excellence.

Winning projects, selected by a jury of international experts in design, land planning and other services, will be announced in October in Dallas.

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EDITORIAL: LETTING THE NEIGHBORS KNOW ABOUT ADU’S — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Bend city councilors have done many commendable things to increase the stock of affordable housing. Adding secrecy was not one of them. We are going to dispel some of the secrecy.

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EDITORIAL: KEEP PRESSURE ON USDA AND BENTGRASS DEVELOPER — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

While genetically modified organisms are not the frankenplants their opponents would like you to think, they can have problems. Roundup Ready creeping bentgrass offers a case in point.

Scotts and Monsanto developed GMO creeping bentgrass in the early 2000s and tested it in Jefferson County. One anticipated market would be the grass for golf courses.

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EDITORIAL: ROBBING FIRE PREVENTION TO FIGHT FIRES — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

The federal government has been robbing fire prevention to fight wildfires.

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., has come out with proposed legislation to fix it. It may be a good starting place, but it could also rob fire prevention to fight wildfires.

This is not the comprehensive fire budget fix we need, said Bryan Rice, director of the Office of Wildland Fire for the Department of Interior in written testimony to a Senate committee.

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WHAT DOES BREXIT MEAN FOR OREGON? (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

As the U.K. decides to leave the European Union, the question in Oregon is: What does it mean for the state?

Oregon State University assistant professor Alison Johnston said the main issue is stock market volatility.

I think your big Oregon companies that I know of, companies like Nike, and Intel and Columbia, I don’t think they’re going to be impacted too much, Johnston said.

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WASHINGTON GOVERNOR ASKS UNION PACIFIC TO HALT OIL TRAINS (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Gov. Jay Inslee asked the Union Pacific Railroad on Friday to halt oil train shipments through Washington until the company does more walking inspections of its railroad track.

Inslee joins Oregon Gov. Kate Brown, who has repeatedly called for a moratorium on oil train traffic after a fiery oil train derailment in Mosier, Oregon, on June 3.

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OREGON ZIKA RESEARCHERS TELL SENATORS THEY NEED MORE MONEY (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Oregon’s senators learned Friday how important Zika virus research is being conducted locally and that more funding is needed.

So far there have been eight Zika cases in Oregon. All somehow related to travel overseas, because the mosquitoes that carries the virus dont live here.

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ANY IMPACT OF BREXIT VOTE ON AG LIKELY TO BE TEMPORARY, EXPERTS SAY (Capital Press)

With British voters deciding to leave the European Union, U.S. agriculture may experience a dent in commodity crop prices, experts say.

Exactly how much impact a Brexit will have had on U.S. crop values is debatable, however.

Any major unprecedented event in global financial markets can lead to volatility, said Lindsey Piegza, chief economist for the Stifel brokerage and investment firm.

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NW NATURAL SAYS IP 28 WILL CAUSE 2 PERCENT RATE HIKE (East Oregonian)

Northwest Natural estimates it faces an $11 million to $14 million annual tax hike if a controversial corporate sales tax measure wins voter approval in November.

Recouping that cost would likely entail raising customers natural gas utility rates by at least 2 percent, after five rate decreases in the last several years, a company spokeswoman said Friday.

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WORKER SHORTAGE COINCIDES WITH IMMIGRATION DECLINE (Argus Observer)

For better or for worse, a large portion of Kelly Henggelers apple crop outside Fruitland was damaged by hail storms last year.

Worse, because he lost a lot of crops; better, because he would not have had enough workers to harvest them anyway.

Farmers in the Western Treasure Valley and beyond have experienced a shortage of farmworkers for some time, he said.

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OFFICIALS SPLIT: UNFUNDED FIAT OR MORE MONEY? (Argus Observer)

A new initiative petition for career and technical education should be available on the November ballot this year, after the petitions advocates submitted the necessary number of signatures, a spokesman for the campaign stated during Wednesdays Ontario school board meeting.

Initiative Petition 65 aims to provide money for career technical education and college readiness, and to prevent dropouts, according to a news release from the campaign.

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WHAT’S REALLY DRIVING THIS BILL? — OPINION (Argus Observer)

Wait  what?

That was our reaction upon learning Oregons two U.S. senators want to withdraw more than 2 million acres in Malheur County from mineral exploration. Democrats Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden say the proposal would protect public lands from threats including the possibility of foreign companies who want to parachute into the state to explore for minerals such as uranium.

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OREGON RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA SALES CONTINUE TO EXCEED EXPECTATIONS (Medford Mail Tribune)

Q: I see references to people getting cited for traffic offenses that are Class A, Class B, etc., violations, and I assume the fines levied are commensurate with the class of the infraction. But what are the different classes, and how much are the fines for each of them?

A: Violations, in general, are any infraction in which fines and fees, as opposed to jail time, may be used as penalties. Infractions in state law that may involve jail time such as driving with a suspended license for the first time are misdemeanors, and violations of the law that can be penalized with more than a year in prison are felonies. There are four classes of violations, running from Class A to Class D, and three classes each for misdemeanors and felonies, running from Class A to Class C.

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GOVERNOR MISSES CHANCE TO SHOW LEADERSHIP — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown has approached her new job with great caution since being thrust into the state’s top position by the resignation of Gov. John Kitzhaber a little over a year ago. As a result, Oregon voters don’t really have a clear picture of who she is  especially those in this part of the state  and she’s not helping matters by declining an invitation to debate her opponent next month at the Oregon Newspaper Publisher’s Association’s annual convention.

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TWO CCO’S STEP UP WITH $300,000 IN GRANTS (Medford Mail Tribune)

Two coordinated care organizations have announced donations of more than $300,000 to Rogue Valley programs promoting health and wellness.

Jackson Care Connect has awarded $197,000 to five organizations, while an advisory council with Allcare CCO has awarded $118,000 to ACCESS to be used in its food assistance program.

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MEDFORD OFFICIALS RAMP UP WATER TESTING IN WAKE OF LEAD PIPE DISCOVERIES (Medford Mail Tribune)

Following the discovery of lead pipes in Medford’s water system last week, officials say they have launched an all-out effort to identify any suspicious pipes.

That’s not necessarily good enough for some city residents, who have their own suspicions about the lead discoveries.

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GUEST OPINION: FIGHTING POVERTY WITH A PAYCHECK IN KLAMATH FALLS — GUEST OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)

Our region is home to timber, ranch and agriculture communities that have been hit hard by changing economic and social patterns, both in Medford and Klamath Falls. Even before the recent recession, our rural region struggled to hold on to living-wage jobs. This in turn contributed to growing problems with crime, drug abuse and homelessness as referenced in the June 5 editorial entitled There goes the neighborhood. Creative and holistic solutions are necessary to address these problems in our community.

The Oregon Department of Human Services spends over $60 million annually on food stamps and welfare benefits in Klamath County.

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HEALTH ADVISORY: TOXIC ALGAE CONFIRMED IN HOWARD BAY (Herald and News)

A health advisory was issued Friday for toxic blue-green algae in Howard Bay on Upper Klamath Lake by the Oregon Health Authority.

Water monitoring confirmed the presence of toxic blue-green algae in the bay, according to a news release. Toxin concentrations can be harmful to humans and animals, though toxin testing in other areas of the lake have been low.

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DATE FOR PUBLIC HEARING ON STATELINE COMPOST SET (Herald and News)

A public hearing and information session for the proposed Stateline Compost facility off of Highway 97 will be held by the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality from 6 to 8 p.m. Thursday, July 28 at the Midland Grange Hall at 6601 Tingley Lane in Klamath Falls, according to a news release from the DEQ.

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WHAT ONE DISTRICT’S DATA MINING DID FOR CHRONIC ABSENCE (Herald and News)

-What one district’s data mining did for chronic absence-

Coos Bay World Editors Note: The Klamath Falls schools are marked with chronic absenteeism. The following is how one school solved the problem.

Mel Atkins has spent most of his life with Grand Rapids Public Schools. He graduated from Ottawa Hills High, where he played baseball. But his real love: bowling. He says hes bowled 22 perfect games.

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WHITSETT MANEUVER CONTINUES TO ROIL KLAMATH POLITICS — OPINION (Herald and News)

The local legislative election this year should be interesting, though it’s been obvious since Gail and Doug Whitsett did their best to secretly pick their successors that 2016 probably wasn’t going to be your run-of-the-mill local legislative races where the best Republican wins.

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COUNCIL TO MEET TO DISCUSS RAMIFICATIONS OF WASTEWATER PRIVATIZATION (The World)

-Consequences include millions in fines, cost over-runs-

The Tuesday decision by the Coos Bay City Council to suspend work on a planned wastewater plant replacement and system upgrade while a three-person committee explores the benefits of privatization already faces possible ramifications: Halting all work on the Empire Boulevard piping project being done in conjunction with the extensive roadwork.

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TIME TO GO TO WORK, KIDS — OPINION (The World)

Summer is here and schools out, meaning opportunities for young folks to occupy their time with some activity that puts a little spending money in their pockets.

We often hear that summer jobs are difficult to find, and a number of factors play into the challenge of matching up willing employers and eager young men and women. But when we talked earlier this week with career consultant Beth Palmer at South Coast Business Employment Corp., we learned the biggest hurdle oftentimes is overcoming a young persons lack of previous experience with responsibility  outside school work, that is.

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PANELISTS AT ASHLAND FORUM DECRY OIL INDUSTRY INFLUENCE (Ashland Daily Tidings)

Led by Common Cause Oregon, a group of local activists warned Ashlanders on Thursday how the oil industry is dumping dirty money into attack ads, lobbying and political campaigns to try and block climate change bills at the state level.

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FIGHTING WILDFIRES WITH ‘GOOD FIRES’ (Ashland Daily Tidings)

Its no secret that the Pacific Northwest is prone to wildfires during warmer months. Even inside the city limits of Ashland, certain areas with dense vegetation can be at risk for wildfires.

The Fire Learning Network FLN and the Fire Adapted Communities Learning Network FACLN collaborated for a four-day learning exchange in Ashland from Monday through Thursday this week to try and lessen wildfire risk.

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DANGER ON THE RAILS — OPINION (Baker City Herald)

The season of the open night window is upon us and so, it sometime seems to me as a Union Pacific locomotive whistle pierces my darkened bedroom, is the railroad.

Literally on us.

In fact the rails lie about a quarter-mile to the east of my house.

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RAILROAD TO REPLACE BOLTS AFTER MOSIER DERAILMENT (The Dalles Chronicle)

Union Pacific Railroad said it will replace a type of bolt on its track that led to a fiery oil train derailment on the Oregon-Washington border, but the pledge failed to ease concerns in the tiny town where the wreck sparked a massive fire that burned for 14 hours.

Federal investigators in a preliminary report released Thursday blamed the derailment on Union Pacific for failing to properly maintain its track.

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JEWEL ROAD FIRE NEAR DUFUR BURNS 31 ACRES SATURDAY (The Dalles Chronicle)

Jewel Road Fire Burns 31 Acres in Central Oregon

The Jewel Road Fire was reported Saturday at 4:30 p.m. burning in grass and brush on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands west of Dufur in central Oregon. Fire-fighting resources from ODFs Central Oregon District and several cooperators stopped the fires spread at 31 acres.

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WWNF REVIVES LOGGING PROJECT (LaGrande Observer)

A year after a federal court stopped work on the biggest proposed logging project in Baker County in more than two decades, the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest is reviving its plan.

The 2012 Snow Basin project, in the southern Wallowas about 30 miles northeast of Baker City, included four timber sales.

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KNOWING THE COST OF HEALTH CARE (LaGrande Observer)

This kind of price transparency is the ultimate goal of an Oregon initiative launched in Spring 2015, designed to drive hospitals to set standards for providing financial and billing information.

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ODOT INSTALLING TRAFFIC LIGHT AT HIGHWAY 30, MCALISTER (LaGrande Observer)

-Safety improvements added near Flying J intersection on track for fall completion-

The Oregon Department of Transportation’s $767,000 project to add a signal, turn lanes and other improvements to the U.S. Hwy. 30 and McAlister Lane intersection near the Flying J Truck Stop is on track for completion by fall.

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MY VOICE: A FIRST STEP BUT NOT ENOUGH — GUEST OPINION (LaGrande Observer)

My grandmother died feeling betrayed, frightened and utterly powerless in a bleak hospital room. Shed completed an advance directive about her end-of-life goals, preferences and values, including a do not resuscitate order.

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OPERATION DRY WATER THIS WEEKEND (Hood River News)

The Marine Board and law enforcement from 32 counties and the Oregon State Police will be participating in Operation Dry Water during the weekend of June 24-26 as part of a nationally coordinated effort to reduce the number of accidents and fatalities related to boating under the influence of intoxicants BUII.

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NO TO OIL TRAINS — OPINION (Hood River News)

Union Pacifics poor stewardship of the tracks as revealed by federal findings and the ominous likelihood of another derailment, worse than the one at Mosier June 3, points simply to the need to end oil train travel through the Gorge. The governors call for a moratorium on oil traffic in the Gorge should be heeded by federal authorities and the railroad, and the entire Oregon and Washington Congressional delegation should support the ban.

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ANOTHER VOICE: TRAINS IN THE COLUMBIA GORGE ARE GOING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION — GUEST OPINION (Hood River News)

If there is any positive outcome to the Mosier oil train derailment on June 3, it is that many more people are asking the right questions about oil trains traveling along the Columbia River and through our communities. These are questions that challenge our complacency and call for us to stand up for our values as residents of the Columbia Gorge.

#Is it safe to ship oil by rail through the Columbia Gorge? What happens in the event of a major oil fire?

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DOUGLAS COUNTY JOBLESS RATE FALLS TO NEW LOW (Douglas County

The unemployment rate continues to drop to new record lows for Douglas County. In May, the seasonally adjusted rate fell to 6 percent from 6.1 percent in April.

The most significant part is its down from 7.9 percent in May 2015, so over the year, it actually decreased by 1.9 percentage points, said Will Burchard, economist for the Oregon Employment Department.

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OREGON SHERIFFS AND POLICE CHIEFS BACK GOV. BROWN’S OSP SUPERINTENDENT PICK — GUEST OPINION (St. Helens Chronicle)

-Viewpoint by Oregon State Sheriff’s Association-

The announcement that Governor Kate Brown is forwarding Travis Hampton as her choice to serve as the next Superintendent of the Oregon State Police OSP is welcome news to the law enforcement agencies throughout Oregon that partner to keep our state a safe place to live, work and play.

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PER-MILE TAX THE FUTURE, NOT NECESSARILY THE NOW — OPINION (Yamhill Valley News Register)

Drivers should probably get used to the idea of a per-mile tax to one day replace the gas tax. But there’s much to debate regarding the effectiveness of such a plan in the short term.

Often a pioneer in forward-thinking legislation, Oregon was the first state in the nation to launch a pilot program to test a per-mile tax.

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EDUCATION ADVOCATES TURN IN SIGNATURES FOR OREGON FUNDING MEASURE (Oregon Business Journal)

Supporters of an education-aimed Oregon ballot measure have turned in signatures that they believe will formally put the issue before voters.

Backers of IP 65 collected more than 125,000 signatures. Of those, 88,184 must be verified in order for the initiative to hit the ballot.

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GOV. KATE BROWNS FORMER TOP AIDE GOES TO WORK FOR A HOSPITAL CHAIN (Willamette Week)

Longtime political insider Brian Shipley will head government affairs for a three-state hospital chain.

Brian Shipley, a top aide to the past three Oregon governors, has taken a new job as the top lobbyist for PeaceHealth, a non-profit Vancouver, Wash.-based healthcare company that operates 10 hospitals in Alaska, Washington and Oregon.

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OSP ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS ONLINE FOR NEW TROOPERS (KTVZ Bend)

Have you ever considered the Oregon State Police as a career? If so, the Oregon State Police offers numerous duty assignments across our beautiful state and will be accepting Entry Level and Lateral recruit trooper applications beginning today and will close at midnight on Sunday, August 7.

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June 27, 2016 OSL eClips

* Renewed optimism for salmon recovery — Guest Opinion
* Oregon gun sales skyrocket after Orlando shooting
* Improve safety but let oil trains roll through Oregon — Opinion
* Logging plan promises more harm than good — Guest Opinion
* No vacancy in Madras a year ahead of eclipse
* Malheur Refuge takeover over, but aftershocks linger
* Tiny Deschutes County towns once important hubs
* Business owners concerned with minimum wage increases
* Editorial: Group effort needed to fight opioids — Opinion
* Addiction Emergency: The fight to turn the tide on prescription drug abuse
* Wage increase impact will differ among economic sectors
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RENEWED OPTIMISM FOR SALMON RECOVERY — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

As another early heat wave passes, we’re reminded of last summer’s devastating, record-hot river temperatures that closed down fishing opportunities and killed hundreds of thousands of returning salmon. With new rounds of record-high temperatures impacting Northwest waters, we’re bracing our businesses in case we see a repeat of 2015.

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OREGON GUN SALES SKYROCKET AFTER ORLANDO SHOOTING (Salem Statesman Journal)

Gun sales in Oregon increased dramatically in the days after the massacre at a nightclub in Orlando, Fla., reaching nearly three times the daily average in the week following the attack.

Data from the state police shows that 573 guns were sold June 12, the day of the shooting. Just five days later, 1,364 guns were sold in a day. On average, 558 guns were sold in Oregon each day of June 2015.

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IMPROVE SAFETY BUT LET OIL TRAINS ROLL THROUGH OREGON — OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)

Broken bolts in the railroad track caused the frightening oil train derailment in the Columbia River Gorge. Better brakes and other improvements would have made the train derailment less severe.

Those are among the Federal Railroad Administration’s preliminary findings into the June 3 derailment, in which a Union Pacific train spilled oil and caught fire near the town of Mosier.

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LOGGING PLAN PROMISES MORE HARM THAN GOOD — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

As a resident of Brookings for four decades and as a longtime fishing guide, I have seen a thrilling rise in fishing, recreation and tourism businesses.

The South Coast region’s travel economy generated $388 million in 2015, supporting 5,000 jobs and representing 1.4 million trips to the area. I join many Oregonians who are thankful for the spectacular rivers that contribute so much to our livelihoods and our high quality of life.

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NO VACANCY IN MADRAS A YEAR AHEAD OF ECLIPSE (Bend Bulletin)

-Total solar eclipse expected to draw thousands to the area-

For approximately two minutes on the morning of Monday, Aug. 21, 2017, a narrow swath of Oregon will go dark, as the sun fully disappears behind the moon from Newport to Ontario.

The 2017 solar eclipse is one of just four total solar eclipses expected to be visible coast-to-coast in an approximately 200-year window, between 1901 and 2099, and the only one that will fully obscure the sun in Jefferson County during that period.

The eclipse will only be completely visible across a 70-mile band, known as the path of totality.

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MALHEUR REFUGE TAKEOVER OVER, BUT AFTERSHOCKS LINGER (Bend Bulletin)

-Tuesdays recall election against judge speaks to a divided Burns-

Winter and spring have passed since an armed occupation of a federal wildlife refuge ended, but its aftershocks are still shaking this high desert region of Oregon, with activists setting up Camp Freedom where an occupier was killed and organizing a recall election this week against a top county official.

The headquarters of the 188,000-acre Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, which was occupied for 41 days, is still closed. Down the road, at The Narrows cafe, saloon, shop and gas station, things have settled.

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TINY DESCHUTES COUNTY TOWNS ONCE IMPORTANT HUBS (Bend Bulletin)

-Millican, Hampton and Brothers were central to the lives of nearby ranchers-

The small communities of Millican, Brothers and Hampton all had their own post offices by the time Deschutes County was formed in 1916 when voters decided to break away from Crook County.

While the towns were important hubs for ranchers who lived a rugged existence on the open rangeland, they never developed into cities like Bend and Redmond, whose residents pushed for the creation of Deschutes County.

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BUSINESS OWNERS CONCERNED WITH MINIMUM WAGE INCREASES (Albany Democrat Herald)

A new series of annual minimum wage increases  the first being a jump from $9.25 to $9.75 locally  starts on Friday in Oregon, and while low-paid workers will get a boost in income and spending power, mid-Willamette business owners are concerned.

Its going to impact us a lot. Half of our employees are minimum wage folks, said Kaymarie Novak, business manager of Novaks Hungarian Restaurant in downtown Albany.
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EDITORIAL: GROUP EFFORT NEEDED TO FIGHT OPIOIDS — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

We don’t always agree with U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, but he’s right on the money when he talks about how to combat the nation’s addiction to opioid painkillers.

In case you missed it, Wyden, Oregon’s senior senator, commented on the issue in our Sunday story about the efforts underway to curb the misuse of opioids.

Here’s what he said: “To get this done right, you have to have enforcement, prevention and treatment working in tandem. If all you do is enforcement, if all you do is take away choices, the addiction doesn’t magically vanish.”
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ADDICTION EMERGENCY: THE FIGHT TO TURN THE TIDE ON PRESCRIPTION DRUG ABUSE (Albany Democrat Herald)

Health care professionals and law enforcement personnel in the mid-valley are working to reverse the tide of a declared national epidemic in prescription drug abuse and addiction.

While efforts to reverse the trend are new, the problem is not. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, since 1999, more than 165,000 have died nationally from prescription opioid overdose. Twenty-eight thousand of those occurred in 2014.

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WAGE INCREASE IMPACT WILL DIFFER AMONG ECONOMIC SECTORS (Albany Democrat Herald)

When the first phase of the states minimum wage increase takes effect later this week, more than 200,000 Oregonians will see a pay increase.

The Legislature passed the minimum wage law during the 2016 session, despite criticism from business interests that warned it would put Oregon at a competitive disadvantage, slow job growth, cause businesses to fail and jeopardize communities.

_________________________________________

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June 24, 2016 OSL eClips

* Kate Brown renews call for oil train moratorium
* Backers of initiative to boost Oregon’s high school graduation rate turn in 125,000 signatures
* Oregon State Bar investigating Amanda Marshall for misconduct
* Sturgeon fishing cut on Columbia, expanded in Washington
* Gov. Brown appoints State Police superintendent
* Ed board puts lead, radon testing rules on fast track
* House speaker wants to avert more mobile home park closures
* Backers of high school funding initiative turn in signatures
* Foe of death penalty takes message to Oregon
* Superfund expert says natural recovery won’t work to clean up Portland Harbor
* Lead tests shows safe water at Bend-La Pine Schools
* Irrigation district receives $1M for piping
* Report blames Union Pacific for derailment
* Local OSP Major is governors pick for superintendent
* Senate panel hears concerns about funding for fighting wildfires
* Deer Ridge inmate walks away near Sisters
* Editorial: Doubling deposit fee makes sense — Opinion
* Editorial: Drone rules need more work — Opinion
* Mosier Derailment Update & All Day Kindergarten
* Bringing Back Klamath Wetlands, One Wocus At A Time
* Oregon Recreational Marijuana Sales Continue To Exceed Expectations
* Pronghorn Antelope Thrive in Southeast Oregon
* Farmers worry who will control escaped genetically engineered bentgrass
* International trade agreements will avert chaos — Opinion
* Wyden-Merkley Amendment: The dog that don’t hunt — Opinion
* ODF to declare fire season in Northeast Oregon District
* OSHA investigating Hermiston onion shed fire that killed worker
* Our view: Tips and kicks — Opinion
* Editorial: Joint panel should get green light — Opinion
* Oregon Income, A Discussion– Blog
* How Should Oregon’s Governments Give Veterans First Dibs on Jobs?
* New Report Shines Light on Mistreatment of Deaf Prisoners in Oregon
* Top state education leaders grilled about lead testing requirement plan
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KATE BROWN RENEWS CALL FOR OIL TRAIN MORATORIUM (Portland Oregonian)

Gov. Kate Brown again called for a moratorium on oil trains in Oregon, after federal regulators released findings Thursday that blamed this month’s fiery derailment and spill in the Columbia River Gorge on Union Pacific’s failure to maintain its tracks.

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BACKERS OF INITIATIVE TO BOOST OREGON’S HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATION RATE TURN IN 125,000 SIGNATURES (Portland Oregonian)

Backers of an initiative designed to boost Oregon’s low high school graduation rate on Thursday turned in what they say are more than enough signatures to qualify the measure for the November ballot.

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OREGON STATE BAR INVESTIGATING AMANDA MARSHALL FOR MISCONDUCT (Portland Oregonian)

The Oregon State Bar has opened an investigation into whether Amanda Marshall committed misconduct while serving as U.S. attorney of Oregon.

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STURGEON FISHING CUT ON COLUMBIA, EXPANDED IN WASHINGTON (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon and Washington have cut short the last sturgeon retention fishing on the jointly managed Columbia River below McNary Dam.

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GOV. BROWN APPOINTS STATE POLICE SUPERINTENDENT (Salem Statesman Journal)

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown announced Thursday that Maj. Travis Hampton has been appointed as superintendent of the Oregon State Police.

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ED BOARD PUTS LEAD, RADON TESTING RULES ON FAST TRACK (Portland Tribune)

Oregon’s Board of Education is fast-tracking adoption of a new rule that requires schools to test for lead and radon and report those results to the public.

The rule came on the heels of a scandal in Portland Public Schools over lead in drinking water that went unreported, and a directive by Gov. Kate Brown.

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HOUSE SPEAKER WANTS TO AVERT MORE MOBILE HOME PARK CLOSURES (Portland Tribune)

House Speaker Tina Kotek, D-Portland, wants to see stepped-up efforts to preserve mobile home parks, given the hot real estate market that is making more parks vulnerable to redevelopment.

Kotek, whose district includes a large mobile home park in Hayden Island and several smaller ones in the Cully neighborhood, recently convened a meeting at Portland City Hall to discuss what steps to take. Their goal is to preserve what they view as an important source of affordable housing.

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BACKERS OF HIGH SCHOOL FUNDING INITIATIVE TURN IN SIGNATURES (Portland Tribune)

Petitioners for a measure to require one-sixth of new state funding to go toward targeted high school programs say they have enough signatures to secure a place on Novembers general election ballot.

Supporters of Initiative Petition 65 said the measure will address a trio of problems: The states low graduation rate, cutbacks in career and technical education and the need for remedial education in postsecondary school.

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FOE OF DEATH PENALTY TAKES MESSAGE TO OREGON (Portland Tribune)

-Former Gov. Kitzhaber, who imposed 2011 halt, is among the audience.-

The Rev. Jack Sullivan Jr. carried his message against the death penalty to like-minded abolitionists in Oregon.

There is nothing personally redemptive or socially transformative about the death penalty, Sullivan said Wednesday June 22 at the annual banquet of Oregonians for Alternatives to the Death Penalty.

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SUPERFUND EXPERT SAYS NATURAL RECOVERY WON’T WORK TO CLEAN UP PORTLAND HARBOR (Portland Tribune)

The Portland Harbor Community Advisory Group held a public forum Tuesday night at Hariet Tubman Middle School to provide a better understanding for the community about the Environmental Protection Agencys Superfund plan to decontaminate certain areas of the Willamette River.

On June 8, the EPA proposed a $746 million plan that would clean up a 10-mile stretch of the river, kicking off a 60-day comment period that allows the public to express their thoughts, opinion and concerns about the plan.

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LEAD TESTS SHOWS SAFE WATER AT BEND-LA PINE SCHOOLS (Bend Bulletin)

-38 facilities tested in district-

Testing of drinking water throughout Bend-La Pine Schools this month turned up no unsafe levels of lead, the district announced Thursday.

Following the lead water crisis in Flint, Michigan, schools across the country started testing their drinking water. In Portland, parents have accused the district of withholding test results that show elevated levels of lead in the water. Tests at schools in Eugene, Beaverton, Gresham and elsewhere have also turned up elevated levels.

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IRRIGATION DISTRICT RECEIVES $1M FOR PIPING (Bend Bulletin)

-Tumalo Irrigation District will put the federal funds towards converting its feed canal to buried pipe-

The Tumalo Irrigation District was awarded $1 million Thursday for a piping project designed to conserve water and increase flows in Tumalo and Crescent creeks.

The federal money through the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation is one funding component for piping about 5,500 feet of the Tumalo Feed Canal, which diverts water from Tumalo Creek to Upper Tumalo Reservoir northwest of Bend.

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REPORT BLAMES UNION PACIFIC FOR DERAILMENT (Bend Bulletin)

Union Pacific Railroad said it will replace a type of bolt on its track that led to a fiery oil train derailment on the Oregon-Washington border, but the pledge failed to ease concerns in the tiny town where the wreck sparked a massive fire that burned for 14 hours.

Federal investigators in a preliminary report released Thursday blamed the derailment on Union Pacific for failing to properly maintain its track.

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LOCAL OSP MAJOR IS GOVERNORS PICK FOR SUPERINTENDENT (Bend Bulletin)

-Travis Hampton leads the departments field operations bureau-

Oregon Gov. Kate Browns pick for Oregon State Police superintendent is OSP Maj. Travis Hampton, a Deschutes County resident who leads the departments field operations bureau.

Hampton, if approved by the Oregon state Senate, would lead the states largest law enforcement agency starting July 1, according to the governors office.

The Oregon State Sheriffs Association and the Oregon Association of Chiefs of Police publicly applauded Browns choice.

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SENATE PANEL HEARS CONCERNS ABOUT FUNDING FOR FIGHTING WILDFIRES (Bend Bulletin)

-Agencies and conservation groups have concerns about bill-

The way to structure federal funding for fighting fires and for forest-related work that helps prevent fires remains a work in progress, following discussion on related legislation at a U.S. Senate committee hearing Thursday in Washington, D.C.

One point of agreement: a need to end fire-borrowing, the current practice of shifting funds from work on forest restoration and fire prevention toward fighting wildfires.

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DEER RIDGE INMATE WALKS AWAY NEAR SISTERS (Bend Bulletin) Correctional Institution is missing after walking away from a work crew today near Sisters, according to a news release from the Oregon Department of Corrections.

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EDITORIAL: DOUBLING DEPOSIT FEE MAKES SENSE — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

If you’re a soda or beer drinker, you’re surely familiar with Oregon’s bottle bill. Each time you purchase beer, soda or water that’s packaged in a plastic or metal container, you pay an extra nickel for what you get.

That money is supposed to encourage you to return the container, but a nickel isn’t worth what it used to be. As a result, Oregonians are less likely to return containers to retailers or redemption centers today than they were when the states bottle bill went into effect in 1972.

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EDITORIAL: DRONE RULES NEED MORE WORK — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

The Federal Aviation Administration has issued new drone regulations. For Oregon businesses, its about time.

It opens up the skies for Oregon businesses wanting to compete in the unmanned aircraft market, said Chuck Allen of Soar Oregon, which works to develop the industry in the state.

But much more is needed.

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MOSIER DERAILMENT UPDATE & ALL DAY KINDERGARTEN (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

This morning, the Federal Railroad Administration released a report saying Union Pacific failed to maintain the track at Mosier, where an oil train derailed earlier this month. We check in with EarthFix reporter Tony Schick.

This year, Oregon went from making full-day kindergarten available for 42 percent of the states 5-year-olds to making it available in every district. We discuss the benefits of full-day kindergarten with Amanda Ferguson, a teacher at Spring Mountain Elementary and Chloe Gibbs, assistant professor of economics at University of Notre Dame _________________________________________

BRINGING BACK KLAMATH WETLANDS, ONE WOCUS AT A TIME (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

The marsh is alive with the chatter of hundreds of birds. They get agitated as Blake Eldridge steers his small boat near a tangle of head-high vegetation on the shore.

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OREGON RECREATIONAL MARIJUANA SALES CONTINUE TO EXCEED EXPECTATIONS (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Nearly $60 million worth of recreational marijuana was sold in Oregon during the first five months of taxed sales, according to estimated figures released Wednesday by the state.

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PRONGHORN ANTELOPE THRIVE IN SOUTHEAST OREGON (Jefferson Public Radio)

One of the last strongholds of pronghorn antelope is the Hart Mountain National Antelope Refuge in Oregon’s high desert some 30 miles east of Lakeview.

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FARMERS WORRY WHO WILL CONTROL ESCAPED GENETICALLY ENGINEERED BENTGRASS (Capital Press)

Eastern Oregon farmer Jerry Erstrom scouts for patches of genetically engineered creeping bentgrass on the banks of an irrigation ditch June 14.

It doesn’t take him long to find one. And then another, and another.

The bentgrass was genetically engineered to withstand applications of glyphosate herbicide, which makes it difficult to kill.

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INTERNATIONAL TRADE AGREEMENTS WILL AVERT CHAOS — OPINION (Capital Press)

Anyone who doubts the value of comprehensive international trade agreements should go to France.

That nation recently prohibited the importation of cherries from any nation that allows the use of the insecticide dimethoate. Mind you, the insecticide doesnt have to be used on cherries; just the fact that it could be used in the U.S. is sufficient for French officials to block U.S. cherries.

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WYDEN-MERKLEY AMENDMENT: THE DOG THAT DON’T HUNT — OPINION (Capital Press)

During late April, the press announced how a proposed Senate Energy Bill amendment introduced in the U.S. Senate in February by Oregon Democratic Sens. Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden would provide certain benefits to Klamath Basin irrigators.

The energy bill, including the amendment, S.A. 288, passed the Senate on April 20 and its fate now rests with a Senate-House conference committee. S.A. 3288 would add new Section 4 Power and Water Management to the Klamath Basin Water Supply Enhancement Act of 2000.

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ODF TO DECLARE FIRE SEASON IN NORTHEAST OREGON DISTRICT (East Oregonian)

-Fire season is coming on private forestland in northeast Oregon.-

The Oregon Department of Forestry will formally declare fire season on Tuesday, June 28 in the Northeast Oregon District, which spans roughly 2 million acres.

Matt Howard, unit forester in Wallowa, said the onset of hotter and drier weather should start curing grasses and fine fuels that help fires spread during the early portion of the summer.

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OSHA INVESTIGATING HERMISTON ONION SHED FIRE THAT KILLED WORKER (East Oregonian)

-The cause of the fatal June 1 onion shed fire near Hermiston is still under investigation.-

The fire claimed the life of Columbia Basin Spreaders Inc. employee Joseph Adams, 62, of Umatilla.

According to Columbia Basin Spreaders project manager Steve Williams, the shed was going through a renovation process in an effort to update the air flow system.

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OUR VIEW: TIPS AND KICKS — OPINION (East Oregonian)

A kick in the pants to Union Pacific Railroad  not just for the train crash earlier this month that dumped oil into the Columbia River and caught fire near Mosier  but for the poor management and maintenance that caused the crash and the speed with which the company resumed transporting dangerous crude.

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EDITORIAL: JOINT PANEL SHOULD GET GREEN LIGHT — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

Marijuana in Oregon is back in the news  actually, come to think of it, marijuana in Oregon hasn’t been out of the news much over the last couple of years, but a couple of recent developments are worth noting.

First, two members of the Legislatures wonderfully named Joint Committee on Marijuana Legislation have written a letter to legislative leaders, urging that the committee get the green light to continue meeting

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OREGON INCOME, A DISCUSSION— BLOG (Oregon Office of Economic Analysis)

A lot has been made of and discussed about the fact that Oregonians have lower incomes than the nation overall. However, I find myself reaching for various measures of income when the need arises, or to answer specific questions. Are we talking about wages, or about household income, or about the potential tax base for revenues? There is no one measure to rule them all. Each has both pros and cons about its usefulness, depending upon the question being asked.

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HOW SHOULD OREGON’S GOVERNMENTS GIVE VETERANS FIRST DIBS ON JOBS? (Willamette Week)

-Oregon cities and counties oppose Labor Commissioner Brad Avakian’s ruling on veterans’ preference law.-

The long-running legal battle over the application of a law requiring preferential treatment for veterans in certain employment settings has taken an another turn and it’s increasing clear that local governments all over the state fear consequences from mismanagement in the Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office.

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NEW REPORT SHINES LIGHT ON MISTREATMENT OF DEAF PRISONERS IN OREGON (Willamette Week)

-Deaf inmates in Oregon have been denied competent sign language interpreters.-

Deaf prison inmates in Oregon have struggled over the past four years to gain access to competent American Sign Language translators, according to a new report released by the Amplifying Voices of Inmates with Disabilities Prison Project.

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TOP STATE EDUCATION LEADERS GRILLED ABOUT LEAD TESTING REQUIREMENT PLAN (KATU)

KATU’s On Your side Investigators grilled Oregon Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction Salam Noor Thursday about a plan to require all schools to test for lead in water.

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June 23, 2016 OSL eClips

* Union Pacific to resume sending oil trains through Columbia River Gorge
* 45 percent of Portland school’s faucets break lead limits
* About 300 gallons of diesel fuel leak from train in Columbia River Gorge, official confirms
* Reports of state government waste surge in 2015
* $15 million in taxes collected from pot sales this year
* Gov. Kate Brown takes heat for declining debate
* Forest Service planning camping fee increases in Oregon
* Oregon DMV begins accepting credit, debit cards
* Agate Resources insiders made $34 million on sale of company that used public funds to provide health care to low-income Oregonians
* Arbitrator reinstates Lane County employee fired for medical marijuana use
* Oregon dispensaries sell close to $60 million in recreational pot over first five months this year
* Social Security benefits expected to increase
* A less car-reliant future — Opinion
* Red flags for children — Opinion
* Seneca has complied on taxes, environment — Guest Opinion
* Financial abuse of seniors big, and getting bigger
* State tab in Oracle case tops $10M
* Gov. Brown remains silent on corporate tax hike
* State police conducting inquiry into examiner at Portland lab
* Oregon bottle deposit likely to double in 2017
* Central Oregon CCO improved on most fronts in 2015
* Central Oregon transport projects in line for state funds
* Hospital report shows success in some areas
* State collects about $15M in pot tax
* Editorial: Ferrioli prevents the state from doing a dumb thing — Opinion
* New Report: Union Pacific Failed To Maintain Track, Resulting In Oil Train Derailment
* Portland Marijuana Tax Could Mean Collecting $3 Million In Cash
* Oregonians Spent More Than Needed On Health Procedures Last Year
* Judge refuses to overturn Oregon grazing plans
* Agritourism: If you grow it, they will come
* Sales figures could make pot Oregon’s most valuable crop
* OUR VIEW: What we don’t know about marijuana — Opinion
* Water crew search leads to lead
* Local counties receive $3.8 million in PILT dollars
* More counties leave financial watch list — Opinion
* Port chief proposes a levee solution
* Stormwater projects top of the list in Port of Astoria budget
* Editorial: Just say no to gun ownership — Opinion
* Guest Column: Time to fix our broken federal coal system — Guest Opinion
* Editorial: Celebrating Linn County’s job numbers — Opinion
* Fire stations get seismic renovations to prep for the big one
* State: Pay-for-performance program has improved Oregon’s health
* Murmurs: Who Wants to Pay a Tax on Miles Driven? No? How About a Weed Tax?
* Oregon marijuana tax has raised nearly $15 million
* The best and worst states to raise children in
* Moda Given the Okay by Insurance Division
* PEBB Slides Under Cost Caps for Biennium at Negotiation Table

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UNION PACIFIC TO RESUME SENDING OIL TRAINS THROUGH COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE (Portland Oregonian)

State leaders reacted with grave concern Wednesday after Union Pacific announced plans to resume transporting crude oil through the Columbia River Gorge despite calls for a pause on oil trains in Oregon.

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45 PERCENT OF PORTLAND SCHOOL’S FAUCETS BREAK LEAD LIMITS (Portland Oregonian)

Portland Public Schools kicked off district-wide water testing at long-shuttered Humboldt School, and results made public late Tuesday are disturbing.

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ABOUT 300 GALLONS OF DIESEL FUEL LEAK FROM TRAIN IN COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE, OFFICIAL CONFIRMS (Portland Oregonian)

About 300 gallons of diesel fuel leaked from an eastbound locomotive Tuesday night in the Columbia River Gorge, a Union Pacific spokesman confirmed.

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REPORTS OF STATE GOVERNMENT WASTE SURGE IN 2015 (Salem Statesman Journal)

Reports to the state government waste hotline increased 35 percent during 2015, according to an audit released Wednesday by the Secretary of State’s office.

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$15 MILLION IN TAXES COLLECTED FROM POT SALES THIS YEAR (Salem Statesman Journal)

The state has collected just shy of $15 million in taxes from the sale of recreational marijuana this year, according to data released Wednesday by the Oregon Department of Revenue.

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GOV. KATE BROWN TAKES HEAT FOR DECLINING DEBATE (Salem Statesman Journal)

Gov. Kate Brown is setting her own terms for debates this election cycle, choosing not to debate Republican nominee Bud Pierce until September 1  less than seven weeks before ballots are mailed to voters.

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FOREST SERVICE PLANNING CAMPING FEE INCREASES IN OREGON (Salem Statesman Journal)

Campers will pay a little more to spend the night in Oregon’s great outdoors if a proposal from the U.S. Forest Service moves forward.

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OREGON DMV BEGINS ACCEPTING CREDIT, DEBIT CARDS (Salem Statesman Journal)

The 60 Oregon DMV field offices will accept credit and debit cards by the end of summer, said agency spokesman David House.

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AGATE RESOURCES INSIDERS MADE $34 MILLION ON SALE OF COMPANY THAT USED PUBLIC FUNDS TO PROVIDE HEALTH CARE TO LOW-INCOME OREGONIANS (Eugene Register-Guard)

A small group of insiders in a private Eugene company that managed medical services for low-income Lane County residents made about $34 million when the company sold last year to a large out-of-state buyer, documents obtained by The Register-Guard show.

For-profit Agate Resources owned and ran Trillium Community Health Plan, which oversees the Oregon Health Plan in Lane County, using federal and state government money to provide health care for about 94,000 low-income residents in Lane County and 2,000 in Douglas County.

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ARBITRATOR REINSTATES LANE COUNTY EMPLOYEE FIRED FOR MEDICAL MARIJUANA USE (Eugene Register-Guard)

In a rare ruling, an arbitrator has found that Lane County government erred in firing an employee for his off-duty use of medical marijuana late last year.

Michael Hirsch, a 60-year-old prostate cancer survivor, will be reinstated to his job as a senior programmer and systems analyst next week and given $21,550 in back pay for the six months since he was terminated.

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OREGON DISPENSARIES SELL CLOSE TO $60 MILLION IN RECREATIONAL POT OVER FIRST FIVE MONTHS THIS YEAR (Eugene Register-Guard)

Nearly $60 million worth of recreational marijuana was sold in Oregon during the first five months of taxed sales, according to estimated figures released Wednesday by the state.

The sales estimate is based on the amount of recreational marijuana tax that retailers paid the state for the period of Jan. 1 through May 30.

The Oregon Department of Revenue received $14.9 million in recreational tax payments as of May 30, the agency announced.

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SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS EXPECTED TO INCREASE (Eugene Register-Guard)

Millions of Social Security beneficiaries would get a tiny increase in monthly payments next year  less than $2.50, about enough to buy a gallon of gas.

Meanwhile, Medicare is expected to go bankrupt sooner than expected  12 years from now.

And some beneficiaries could face higher monthly premiums next year.

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A LESS CAR-RELIANT FUTURE — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

Eugene’s new 20-year Transportation System Plan calls for a tripling of the number of trips made on foot, on bicycles or in buses over the next two decades. One common reaction: There they go again, trying to pry people out of their cars, when everybody knows the automobile is heavily preferred for reasons of convenience, necessity, geography and weather.

But the goal is realistic, even necessary, when placed beside the alternative.

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RED FLAGS FOR CHILDREN — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

A new national study on the well-being of children includes some troubling findings for Oregon  and for Lane County in particular.

The Annie E. Casey Foundation looks at four main categories in its annual Kids Count report: Economic well-being, education, health, and family/community.

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SENECA HAS COMPLIED ON TAXES, ENVIRONMENT — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

Christian Wihtol’s June 6 article regarding Senecas biomass power facility is another in his long line of articles about our state-of-the-art renewable energy facility. Wihtol’s line of articles have included questions about our environmental compliance, the power contract we signed with the Eugene Water & Electric Board, and now our payment of taxes, both property and income.

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FINANCIAL ABUSE OF SENIORS BIG, AND GETTING BIGGER (Portland Tribune)

-Family members most common perpetrators-

After two and a half decades working in public and private litigation across Oregon, attorney Shawn ONeil decided to take up work closer to his home in Wilsonville. He opened his own firm in the city several years ago, and solicited for a range of services, from business law to personal injury and governmental affairs.

But he was surprised to discover a need in the community for a practitioner willing to take on another sort of issue: the financial exploitation of seniors.

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STATE TAB IN ORACLE CASE TOPS $10M (Portland Tribune)

Oregon’s legal tab to outside law firms has passed $10 million in the battle with Oracle over who is to blame for the $300 million Cover Oregon website debacle.

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GOV. BROWN REMAINS SILENT ON CORPORATE TAX HIKE (Portland Tribune)

-She outlines her economic priorities at Westside Economic Alliance breakfast.-

Gov. Kate Brown drew attention Wednesday for what she did not say to Washington County business leaders and public officials as for what she did say.

Brown did not say how she stands on a ballot measure, which has qualified for a statewide vote Nov. 8, that will raise corporate taxes based on Oregon sales.

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STATE POLICE CONDUCTING INQUIRY INTO EXAMINER AT PORTLAND LAB (Bend Bulletin)

-OSP analysts in Bend and at two other labs already being investigated-

Oregon State Police are investigating a technical anomaly involving fingerprint analysis at the agency’s forensic lab in the Portland area, according to a document obtained Wednesday by The Bulletin.

The state police have five crime labs throughout the state, and this latest inquiry comes as the Oregon Department of Justice is investigating Nika Larsen, a forensic analyst at the Bend lab suspected of tampering of evidence.

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OREGON BOTTLE DEPOSIT LIKELY TO DOUBLE IN 2017 (Bend Bulletin)

-The intent would be to boost beverage container return rates-

One by one, nearly 100 bottles and cans slide from Ken Turpins hands and disappear into the sticky surface of the reverse vending machine. It doesnt take long, and it appears Turpin has the bottle return process down to a science.

Turpin, from Bend, visits the Bend BottleDrop center twice monthly and says for him, its more convenient than when bottle returns were at grocery stores.

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CENTRAL OREGON CCO IMPROVED ON MOST FRONTS IN 2015 (Bend Bulletin)

-Group earned more than $10 million through incentive program-

For the most part, Central Oregon’s Medicaid enrollees got better care and had better outcomes in 2015 compared with 2014, according to a new report from the Oregon Health Authority.

The OHA assesses annually the states coordinated care organizations, the groups that administer the Oregon Health Plan  Medicaid  regionally, on 17 different measures, such as access to care and visits to the emergency room. It released its 2015 annual performance report today, which shows continued decreases in hospital readmissions and more access to primary care for kids.

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CENTRAL OREGON TRANSPORT PROJECTS IN LINE FOR STATE FUNDS (Bend Bulletin)

-Redmond, Bend, Prineville likely to make cut-

Four transportation projects in Central Oregon are in the running to receive a portion of $45 million in state funding that will be distributed later this year.

The states ConnectOregon program distributes grants to nonhighway infrastructure projects, including airports, rail, trails and ports using lottery-backed bonds.

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HOSPITAL REPORT SHOWS SUCCESS IN SOME AREAS (Bend Bulletin)

-St. Charles Bend struggles with infections, patient surveys-

Hospitals in Oregon continue to struggle with patients being readmitted after they’re discharged, according to a new report by the Oregon Health Authority.

Only three hospitals met a statewide benchmark of reducing readmissions to 8 percent of all patients, and St. Charles Bend was not among them.

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STATE COLLECTS ABOUT $15M IN POT TAX (Bend Bulletin)

-Nearly half the dispensaries fail to file quarterly tax return-

Sales of recreational marijuana in Oregon yielded $14.9 million in tax payments through May, according to the state Department of Revenue.

The state started collecting a 25 percent tax on recreational marijuana sales in January. Medical marijuana dispensaries may sell limited amounts of marijuana to recreational users until Dec. 31. A lower state tax rate, 17 percent, takes effect in the new year.

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EDITORIAL: FERRIOLI PREVENTS THE STATE FROM DOING A DUMB THING — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Just when it appeared Oregon state government couldn’t get any more weird, a state board came out against employees making sound financial decisions and against employee choice.

You might think that teachers and other school employees deserve to be able to pick the health care plan thats right for them without paying a penalty. But the Oregon Educators Benefit Board had a better idea.

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NEW REPORT: UNION PACIFIC FAILED TO MAINTAIN TRACK, RESULTING IN OIL TRAIN DERAILMENT (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

A new report from the Federal Railroad Administration released Thursday said Union Pacifics failure to maintain its track and equipment resulted in the derailment of an oil train earlier this month in the Columbia River Gorge.

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PORTLAND MARIJUANA TAX COULD MEAN COLLECTING $3 MILLION IN CASH (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Voters in Portland will get to decide whether to add a local tax to recreational marijuana sales.

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OREGONIANS SPENT MORE THAN NEEDED ON HEALTH PROCEDURES LAST YEAR (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Oregonians could have saved 28 percent on their health procedures last year if they’d shopped for the best price, according to a new study from the Portland cost transparency company HealthSparq.

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JUDGE REFUSES TO OVERTURN OREGON GRAZING PLANS (Capital Press)

A federal judge has rejected environmentalists arguments that grazing along Oregon’s Sprague and Sycan rivers unlawfully harms bull trout habitat where the fish doesn’t live.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark Clarke has held that grazing plans for 10 federal land allotments comply with the Endangered Species Act and other environmental laws.

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AGRITOURISM: IF YOU GROW IT, THEY WILL COME (East Oregonian)

Umatilla and Morrow counties are home to a sweeping variety of agriculture, from rolling wheat fields to colorful orchards and rugged cattle ranches.

State tourism officials say those same farms could become a major selling point for visitors wanting to see and taste the authentic Oregon experience.

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SALES FIGURES COULD MAKE POT OREGON’S MOST VALUABLE CROP (East Oregonian)

Sales and tax figures collected by state agencies may finally solve one of Oregon’s long-running farm crop questions of whether marijuana is indeed the states most valuable crop, as cannabis advocates have always maintained.

Tight controls and reporting requirements by the Oregon Department of Revenue and Oregon Liquor Control Commission should result in accurate information about pot, said Bruce Pokarney, spokesman for the state Department of Agriculture. The department compiles an annual list of the states most valuable crops.

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OUR VIEW: WHAT WE DON’T KNOW ABOUT MARIJUANA — OPINION (East Oregonian)

Next Friday will mark one year of legal recreational marijuana in Oregon, and theres still so much we don’t know.

Because the drug is a controlled substance in the eyes of the federal government, serious study of its beneficial uses and harmful effects haven’t been undertaken by the FDA. And because of the patchwork of individual state regulations, and the short time since the first states voted to make pot legal, tracking its effects on public health has been spotty at best.

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WATER CREW SEARCH LEADS TO LEAD (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Pigtail’ pipe containing lead was carrying water to six homes-

A lead pipe providing water to six residences was found in Medford Wednesday on Oakdale Avenue near Central Medford High, a discovery that could point to more widespread problems in the city system.

Wednesday’s discovery was the fourth lead pipe known as a pigtail that has been found over the past few months in the city _________________________________________

LOCAL COUNTIES RECEIVE $3.8 MILLION IN PILT DOLLARS (Herald and News)

The U.S. Department of the Interior has allotted $451.6 million in natural resource funding to states and counties across the country, including $3.8 million to local governments.

The revenue is part of the Payment in Lieu of Taxes PILT program, which takes the place of income tax the government does not pay on federal land.

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MORE COUNTIES LEAVE FINANCIAL WATCH LIST — OPINION (Herald and News)

If you want to see a good snapshot of the finances of each Oregon countys finances and economy, take a look at the 2016 Secretary of States Financial Condition Review.

The office puts them out every two years. The first was in 2012. Each report includes a list of eight counties whose financial conditions may indicate a higher risk of distress than other counties, according to the 2012 review. Thats notable because its the last year Klamath County was on it.

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PORT CHIEF PROPOSES A LEVEE SOLUTION (Daily Astorian)

Local officials are hopeful the federal Bonneville Power Administration can help solve Warrenton’s levee problem.

Jim Knight, the director of the Port of Astoria, has proposed a plan to build new, higher levees farther inland from the existing barriers, which were recently decertified by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for not being large enough to prevent inundation.

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STORMWATER PROJECTS TOP OF THE LIST IN PORT OF ASTORIA BUDGET (Daily Astorian)

The Port of Astoria Commission approved a nearly $15.9 million operating budget Tuesday, with about one-tenth of the money earmarked for stormwater treatment projects.

The state Department of Environmental Quality required the Port to install treatment systems by the end of June on the central waterfront and at North Tongue Point after above-benchmark amounts of copper were found in stormwater samples.

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EDITORIAL: JUST SAY NO TO GUN OWNERSHIP — OPINION (Daily Astorian)

Among the many sad ironies surrounding the U.S. cultural wars about firearms is the vast growth in gun numbers during the Obama administration, whose detractors routinely accuse of conspiring to end private gun ownership. Fear of this nonexistent threat has resulted in enough firearm sales to fight off an outer-space invasion.

Data on federal criminal background checks show a continuing surge in gun buying in Oregon and around the nation.

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GUEST COLUMN: TIME TO FIX OUR BROKEN FEDERAL COAL SYSTEM — GUEST OPINION (Daily Astorian)

This week in Seattle, the Department of the Interior is providing the public with the opportunity to provide input on the federal coal program.

Most people dont know that publicly owned coal makes up 40 percent of all coal burned in the U.S. each year  but the rules governing the federal coal program havent been updated in three decades.

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EDITORIAL: CELEBRATING LINN COUNTY’S JOB NUMBERS — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

The good news keeps coming about the employment picture in Linn County, and we should take time to celebrate the work that has helped get us to this point.

But we also should keep in mind how quickly jobs can be lost.

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FIRE STATIONS GET SEISMIC RENOVATIONS TO PREP FOR THE BIG ONE (Corvallis Gazette-Times)

Renovations at a Corvallis fire station likely wont save the building if a major earthquake hits, but they could help the firefighters inside get out so they can help assist the rest of the community.

A seismic renovation construction project is underway at Corvallis Fire Station No. 3, 1310 N.W. Circle Blvd. The project, which is expected to take six to eight weeks, involves reinforcing structural elements to the stations apparatus room and living quarters to make it more likely to survive an earthquake.

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STATE: PAY-FOR-PERFORMANCE PROGRAM HAS IMPROVED OREGON’S HEALTH (Oregon Business Journal)

Oregon Health Plan’s pay-for-performance program has resulted in three years of continued health care improvement for nearly all the state’s Coordinated Care Organizations.

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MURMURS: WHO WANTS TO PAY A TAX ON MILES DRIVEN? NO? HOW ABOUT A WEED TAX? (Willamette Week)

Last July, the Oregon Department of Transportation started a pilot program called OReGO to test the idea of a state tax on miles driven – a tax in which Oregonians driving fuel-efficient vehicles would pay more than they do in gas tax while those driving fuel-inefficient vehicles would pay less.

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OREGON MARIJUANA TAX HAS RAISED NEARLY $15 MILLION (KTVZ Bend)

-State reminds dispensaries: Tax returns were due last month-

As of May 30, the Oregon Department of Revenue has processed $14.9 million in marijuana tax payments this year, the agency said Wednesday. Medical marijuana dispensaries started collecting a 25 percent tax on their recreational marijuana sales in January.

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THE BEST AND WORST STATES TO RAISE CHILDREN IN (CNN)

Minnesota reigns as the most kid-friendly state to raise a family for the second year in a row, according to an Annie E. Casey Foundation study released Tuesday.

Parents in Mississippi and New Mexico, however, might find reason for concern as those states rank among the lowest.

The foundation’s Kids Count Data Center tracks ethnographic data in all 50 states to gauge the well-being of children across the nation, focusing on factors that affect the way children grow up.

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MODA GIVEN THE OKAY BY INSURANCE DIVISION (The Lund Report)

-The health insurer now has the green light and no longer faces sanctions.-

Moda Health can breathe a sigh of relief after the Oregon Insurance Division lifted the Feb. 6 consent order, which required the company to sell a variety of assets and take steps to improve its financial position so it could continue serving its members.

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PEBB SLIDES UNDER COST CAPS FOR BIENNIUM AT NEGOTIATION TABLE (The Lund Report)

The Public Employees Benefit Board signed off on 2017 premium rates for its menu of health plans, which after extensive negotiation, came in at a 4 percent hike, for an average of 3.2 percent over two years.

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 23, 2016 OSL eClips

June 22, 2016 OSL eClips

* Hundreds of gallons of diesel likely leak from train traveling in Columbia River Gorge, official says
* Portland area unemployment rate unchanged, but number of jobs falls
* Groups to Oregon: Marbled murrelets need endangered species protections
* Gov. Kate Brown: Schools must share radon, lead results
* Ore. DMV says it can’t issue license to nonbinary person
* Wolf OR-33 visits Ashland, attacks livestock, skips town
* Oregon schools may be required to test water for lead
* U.S. Senate may ease banking for marijuana businesses
* Lane County in May posts slight increase in jobless rate
* What are pot taxes for? — Opinion
* New overtime rules could hit nonprofits hard
* I-5 bridge maintenance lifts could jam traffic
* For some construction workers in Prineville, a hotel or a campsite is home
* Planning ahead on water
* Report: Bend-La Pine needs seven new schools to keep up with growth
* Outdoor camp exposes girls to natural resources careers
* FAA issues commercial drone rules
* Editorial: Business should not be the enemy — Opinion
* Editorial: More time for fish solution — Opinion
* Column: Health-care premiums are going up again. Now what? — Guest Opinion
* Deschutes DA Re-examines Cases, Vancouver Affordable Housing & Gov. Brown’s Transparency
* Oregon slaughter facilities face challenges
* After spraying, Washington, Oregon search for gypsy moths
* For love of monarchs, Oregon couple grows food to sustain them
* Gripes grow along with marijuana-shielding fences
* New drone rules pivotal moment for emerging industry
* Onion pest makes earlier-than-usual appearance
* Southern Oregon fire crews prepare for long, hot summer
* Planning for Rogue Basin drought resiliency
* Construction and tourism jobs up, retail down
* Our View: Voters share credit for county finances — Opinion
* Brown’s words, actions on tax proposal don’t match — Guest Opinion
* Millicoma teachers get $20,000 grant from ODE
* West Coast states meet to share spill-response efforts
* Challenge program put student on track to graduate
* Help your child hear well now and into adulthood — Guest Opinion
* Astoria city dam likely to survive quake
* Editorial: State eyes per-mile tax for vehicles — Opinion
* Unemployment rises slightly, but still lowest mark in state
* As I See It: Measure will help students succeed — Guest Opinion
* Tree-spikers dangerous, and wrong — Opinion
* Fishing for a piece of history: salmon in the Malheur
* Ready for another hectic fire season
* Union School District receives $45,000 math grant for technology
* ANOTHER VOICE: Governor Brown: Respect the will of Hood River voters — Guest Opinion
* Guest Column: Focus on men’s health and safety this month — Guest Opinion
* States new wage zones causing pay-rate confusion
* Editorial: Governors are supposed to be leaders — Opinion
* Wildfire burns nearly 100 acres west of The Dalles
* Now we know what happens to teens when you make pot legal– Blog
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HUNDREDS OF GALLONS OF DIESEL LIKELY LEAK FROM TRAIN TRAVELING IN COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE, OFFICIAL SAYS (Portland Oregonian)

Hundreds of gallons of diesel fuel have likely leaked from a train that was traveling in the Columbia River Gorge, a Union Pacific spokesman said late Tuesday.

The leaked fuel could total 200 to 300 gallons, said Justin Jacobs, a Union Pacific spokesman. It could be as much as 1,500 gallons, he said, noting it’s not likely that much fuel leaked.

He said there’s no indication fuel entered any waterways.

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PORTLAND AREA UNEMPLOYMENT RATE UNCHANGED, BUT NUMBER OF JOBS FALLS (Portland Oregonian)

The number of jobs in the Portland area dropped last month for the first time in two years, but the regional unemployment rate remained at 4.4 percent in May.

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GROUPS TO OREGON: MARBLED MURRELETS NEED ENDANGERED SPECIES PROTECTIONS (Portland Oregonian)

Nearly three decades since state wildlife officials deemed the marbled murrelet a threatened species, the small seabird is faring worse than ever before, conservationists argue.

A group of six Oregon environmental groups on Tuesday petitioned the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife to downgrade the bird’s status from threatened to endangered, a move they say would acknowledge a population-wide backslide that puts the bird in grave danger of extinction in Oregon.

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GOV. KATE BROWN: SCHOOLS MUST SHARE RADON, LEAD RESULTS (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon school districts may soon be required to test for lead and radon, and then share findings annually along with any proposed repairs, Gov. Kate Brown announced Tuesday.

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ORE. DMV SAYS IT CAN’T ISSUE LICENSE TO NONBINARY PERSON (Salem Statesman Journal)

An Oregon judge decided this month that a person can legally identify as neither sex, but the Oregon DMV will need months  maybe years  before it can issue a driver’s license with a nonbinary sex designation, according to a spokesman.

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WOLF OR-33 VISITS ASHLAND, ATTACKS LIVESTOCK, SKIPS TOWN (Salem Statesman Journal)

When the wolf OR-7 took a historic trek into Western Oregon in 2011, he stayed on his best behavior.

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OREGON SCHOOLS MAY BE REQUIRED TO TEST WATER FOR LEAD (Salem Statesman Journal)

The Oregon Department of Education could require school districts to test for lead and other contaminants in schools under a new rule under consideration by the state Board of Education.

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U.S. SENATE MAY EASE BANKING FOR MARIJUANA BUSINESSES (Salem Statesman Journal)

An amendment to aid marijuana businesses seeking financial services passed the Senate Appropriations Committee on June 16.

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LANE COUNTY IN MAY POSTS SLIGHT INCREASE IN JOBLESS RATE (Eugene Register-Guard)

Lane County’s unemployment rate inched up to 4.8 percent in May, the first increase in a year, the state Employment Department reported Tuesday.

The May rate rose slightly from 4.7 percent in April, the Employment Department said.

The slight increase was the first in the county’s employment rate since May 2015, said Will Burchard, an economist with the Employment Department.

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WHAT ARE POT TAXES FOR? — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

City governments throughout Lane County, and Lane County itself, are lining up to exercise their option to impose a tax on retail sales of recreational marijuana. The local taxes will have to be approved by voters. To increase the appeal of tax proposals at the polls, and in accord with a sound principle of general taxation, cities and the county should be clear about the purposes for which marijuana tax revenues will be used, and those purposes should be at least tangentially related to the source of the revenue.

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NEW OVERTIME RULES COULD HIT NONPROFITS HARD (Portland Tribune)

Noel Mickelberry, executive director of Oregon Walks, often works weekends when she organizes a fundraiser for the nonprofit organization or projects to advocate for protecting Oregonians right to roam.

During one such event Nov. 20, Mickelberry led a crew of 30 volunteers in setting up white silhouettes along roadsides to commemorate World Day of Remembrance for Traffic Victims.

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I-5 BRIDGE MAINTENANCE LIFTS COULD JAM TRAFFIC (Portland Tribune)

Maintenance work on the Interstate Bridge will require several lifts this week.

Oregon’s Department of Transportation, which owns and operates the bridge with the state of Washington, has scheduled lifts for both north and southbound sections for specific maintenance projects. Most of the lifts will be during the evening or early morning hours. Some, however, will be during the day.

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FOR SOME CONSTRUCTION WORKERS IN PRINEVILLE, A HOTEL OR A CAMPSITE IS HOME (Bend Bulletin)

-Zero percent rental vacancy means housing for data center workers can be tough to come by-

Central Oregon’s housing crunch has construction workers in Prineville living out of hotels for months at a time because there’s nowhere else to stay.

Of the 230 hotel rooms in Prineville, about 17 percent of them are booked for extended periods of time by workers who are building the two data centers here, according to an informal survey the city took of its six hotels.

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PLANNING AHEAD ON WATER (Bend Bulletin)

-Public process in Oregon focuses on drought, climate change-

Oregon wants your ideas in planning how to manage the states water.

The Oregon Water Resources Department will host a public meeting Thursday in Bend to collect input on a planned 2017 update to a state water strategy that includes dealing with drought and climate change. It could also address ways to ensure water for fish and recreation and money for irrigation canal piping projects.

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REPORT: BEND-LA PINE NEEDS SEVEN NEW SCHOOLS TO KEEP UP WITH GROWTH (Bend Bulletin)

-District expects to add nearly 6,500 students in 20 years-

Bend-La Pine Schools would have to open seven new schools  including two 1,500-student high schools  over the next 20 years to keep up with enrollment projections, according to a district committee tasked with identifying future facility needs.

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OUTDOOR CAMP EXPOSES GIRLS TO NATURAL RESOURCES CAREERS (Bend Bulletin)

-High school students look toward futures in everything from fire to fishery-

Rebekah Benson hoisted a bucket the size of her torso onto her chest and secured the straps around her shoulders. She deliberately walked along the perimeter of the dirt patch, cranking the buckets handle and spraying a stream of yarrow seed as several girls followed, sweeping the seeds into the soil with tree branches.

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FAA ISSUES COMMERCIAL DRONE RULES (Bend Bulletin)

The federal government on Tuesday made it much easier for companies to use drones for a variety of tasks, including aerial photography and emergency response.

The Federal Aviation Administrations new commercial drone rules allow a broad range of businesses to use drones under 55 pounds, but with several restrictions: The drones must be operated by a pilot who has passed a written test and is at least 16 years old. And drones can be flown only below 400 feet, during the day and at least 5 miles from airports.

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EDITORIAL: BUSINESS SHOULD NOT BE THE ENEMY — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

The Oregon Legislature has a Work Group for Schedules that Work. And its not working so well.

Groups representing businesses dropped out earlier this month, including the Associated Oregon Industries, the Northwest Grocery Association, the Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association, the Oregon Farm Bureau, the Oregon Trucking Association and the Portland Business Alliance.

Why did they bail?

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EDITORIAL: MORE TIME FOR FISH SOLUTION — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Its far easier to block fish from the Deschutes River south of Lake Billy Chinook than it is to return them to that same stretch years later. That’s one of the lessons to be learned from the latest effort to do just that, an effort that’s now entering its second decade.

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COLUMN: HEALTH-CARE PREMIUMS ARE GOING UP AGAIN. NOW WHAT? — GUEST OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

If you haven’t been following the news on health care recently  and given how much else has been going on, there’s a good chance you haven’t  then you may have missed the news that insurers rate-increase requests for 2017 are quite large. A new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation says the cost of the benchmark plan the second-lowest-cost silver plan in a market, which is the price used to calculate subsidies will go up 10 percent this year, double the rate at which prices increased last year.

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DESCHUTES DA RE-EXAMINES CASES, VANCOUVER AFFORDABLE HOUSING & GOV. BROWN’S TRANSPARENCY (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

On Monday, the Vancouver City Council voted to send an affordable housing fund to voters in the fall. We learn more about Vancouver’s affordable housing crisis. Executive Director of the Council for the Homeless Andy Silver joins us to talk about the measure.

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown came into office promising transparency and openness, but recent reporting by Bend Bulletin reporter Taylor Anderson found her administration drags its feet when it comes to public records requests. We talk with Anderson and Willamette Week reporter Nigel Jaquiss about the state of Oregon’s public records laws.

Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel tells us about his investigation into over one thousand cases that may have been compromised, due to a state lab technician allegedly stealing drug evidence on the job.

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OREGON SLAUGHTER FACILITIES FACE CHALLENGES (Capital Press)

After roughly four decades in operation, the Custom Meat Co. of Eugene, Ore., shut down on June 17.

While employees and clients still hope the mobile custom slaughter and meat processing company will be bought and re-opened, they acknowledge the business fell into disarray after owner Victor Hastings succumbed to cancer in January.

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AFTER SPRAYING, WASHINGTON, OREGON SEARCH FOR GYPSY MOTHS (Capital Press)

Washington and Oregon are intensifying their annual summer hunts for gypsy moths, checking whether aerial spraying eradicated the leaf-eating pest.

The Washington State Department of Agriculture last week began nailing to trees 34,000 pheromone-baited traps, including 2,500 in Eastern Washington.

WSDA last year set out 19,000 traps, all in Western Washington.

The Oregon Department of Agriculture in May began to put up 17,000 traps, an increase over the 15,000 used last year.

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FOR LOVE OF MONARCHS, OREGON COUPLE GROWS FOOD TO SUSTAIN THEM (Capital Press)

Oregon is known for its specialized agricultural production, but Jim and Bonnie Kiser may occupy the states narrowest market niche.

Their entire crop this year, seeded in February and March, consisted of 990 milkweed plants. By mid-June, about 800 survived to be given away and planted in yards, parks or gardens.

The plants, Asclepias speciosa, or showy milkweed, are intended as forage for a migratory insect: the monarch butterfly.

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GRIPES GROW ALONG WITH MARIJUANA-SHIELDING FENCES (Capital Press)

They say good fences make good neighbors. Then there’s the fences that enclose the growing number of Josephine County’s marijuana grow sites.

There are a lot of them. And they are often ugly, especially when topped by a couple feet of plastic.

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NEW DRONE RULES PIVOTAL MOMENT FOR EMERGING INDUSTRY (East Oregonian)

Local and state drone officials are already on board with new regulations for small unmanned aerial systems released Tuesday by the Federal Aviation Administration.

In order to legally fly a drone weighing less than 55 pounds, the FAA now requires it be flown during the day, in the line of sight of a pilot or other observer, not over any person not participating in the operation and no higher than 400 feet or faster than 100 miles per hour.

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ONION PEST MAKES EARLIER-THAN-USUAL APPEARANCE (Argus Observer)

Thrips are a common pest in onions, and their populations vary from year to year, but they hit earlier this year and are already spreading disease.

Thrips, insects that attack onion leaves, spread iris yellow spot virus, which also damages the leaves, Oregon State University extension agent Stuart Reitz said.

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SOUTHERN OREGON FIRE CREWS PREPARE FOR LONG, HOT SUMMER (Medford Mail Tribune)

-100 fire-crew members on hand in Jackson, Josephine counties-

With fire season in full swing and climate models pointing toward the likelihood of above-normal temperatures through the summer, wildland firefighters in southwest Oregon say their small army of equipment and personnel is ready to respond.

The Oregon Department of Forestry’s southwest Oregon division includes 100 firefighters split between Jackson and Josephine counties. The crews are responsible for 1.8 million acres of public and private land in the two counties.

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PLANNING FOR ROGUE BASIN DROUGHT RESILIENCY (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Wednesday open house in Medford takes a look a water planning-

State water resources managers are coming to Medford Wednesday to hear how Rogue River Basin residents want to see the basin’s drought resiliency improved amid upcoming land-use changes here and expected changes to the climate.

The Oregon Water Resources Department is in the midst of its first update to 2012’s inaugural Integrated Water Resources Strategy, which outlines goals for managing surface water and groundwater, and seeks out projects that could improve and protect water volume and access.

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CONSTRUCTION AND TOURISM JOBS UP, RETAIL DOWN (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Jackson County jobless rate at 5.6 percent, down 1.4 percent from 2015-

Construction- and tourism-related payrolls mushroomed in May as Jackson County employers added 900 jobs.

Bureau of Labor Statistics data released by the Oregon Employment Department Tuesday showed May’s Jackson County seasonally adjusted jobless rate was 5.6 percent, down 1.4 percent from May 2015.

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OUR VIEW: VOTERS SHARE CREDIT FOR COUNTY FINANCES — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)

Jackson County and its residents received some well-deserved credit when the Oregon Secretary of State’s Audits Division released a new list of economically distressed counties this month.

Jackson County is one of five counties no longer on the list. Others taken off the list were Coos, Lane, Linn and Columbia counties.

Much of the rest of the Southern Oregon region remains in financially perilous condition _________________________________________

BROWN’S WORDS, ACTIONS ON TAX PROPOSAL DON’T MATCH — GUEST OPINION (Herald and News)

Career politicians are often accused of talking out of both sides of their mouth. After a 25-year career in politics, Gov. Kate Brown is perfecting the art of saying one thing while doing another.

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MILLICOMA TEACHERS GET $20,000 GRANT FROM ODE (The World)

-Money used to train teachers throughout next year-

Millicoma teachers are undergoing training throughout the next school year thanks to a $20,000 grant from the Oregon Department of Education.

This training will cover classroom assessment to Smarter Balanced Assessments, including how to take pressure off end-of-year state testing, and how to teach math so kids can apply it to every day life.

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WEST COAST STATES MEET TO SHARE SPILL-RESPONSE EFFORTS (The World)

Washington and Oregon environmental regulators said Tuesday that regional coordination and planning exercises such as drills aided in their response to the fiery train derailment along the Columbia River earlier this month.

The Northwest officials briefed their counterparts from other states on the June 3 train accident in Mosier, Oregon, at the annual meeting of the Pacific States/British Columbia Oil Spill Task Force in Seattle.

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CHALLENGE PROGRAM PUT STUDENT ON TRACK TO GRADUATE (The World)

-Intervention put student back on track and ahead of the group-

High school is not for everyone, and students who don’t seem to fit the mold either fight tooth and nail to graduate  or simply don’t. North Bend High School junior Eugene Nance was behind in credits. Principal Bill Lucero said he wasn’t on track to graduate. But then Nance did something that surprised everyone  he joined the Oregon Youth Challenge Program, the highest ranked military high school in the nation.

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HELP YOUR CHILD HEAR WELL NOW AND INTO ADULTHOOD — GUEST OPINION (The World)

Hearing plays an essential role in speech and language development, communication, classroom learning and social development. Even a small amount of hearing loss can have profound, negative effects on a child’s current and future quality of life. Without proper intervention, children with mild to moderate hearing loss, on average, do not perform as well in school as children with no hearing loss. This gap in academic achievement widens as students progress through school.

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ASTORIA CITY DAM LIKELY TO SURVIVE QUAKE (Daily Astorian)

The Bear Creek Dam, a concrete span that holds Astoria’s water supply, will likely survive a catastrophic earthquake.

A new seismic study found that the dam is sturdier than previous reports indicated and is not expected to fail in a Cascadia Subduction Zone quake. The state has classified the dam as a high hazard because of the risk to people and property downstream in Svensen, but after the findings, will not require expensive structural improvements.

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EDITORIAL: STATE EYES PER-MILE TAX FOR VEHICLES — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

State lawmakers working to build a transportation package for the 2017 Legislature are considering creating a new tax based on how much people drive instead of relying merely on the gas tax.

Its not necessarily a bad idea on its face  certainly, revenues from the gas tax are tumbling as people increasingly turn to fuel-efficient vehicles or even drive vehicles that dont need gasoline at all.

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UNEMPLOYMENT RISES SLIGHTLY, BUT STILL LOWEST MARK IN STATE (Corvallis Gazette-Times)

Benton County’s unemployment rate rose slightly from 3.4 percent to 3.6 percent in May  though that remains the lowest mark in the state.

Overall, from the employment numbers, we saw a fairly normal month in Benton County. Two-tenths of a percentage point isn’t huge.  Its certainly a lower rate than its been in some time, said Patrick O’Connor, regional economist with the Oregon Employment Department.

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AS I SEE IT: MEASURE WILL HELP STUDENTS SUCCEED — GUEST OPINION (Corvallis Gazette-Times)

I’m a parent of two kids here in Corvallis: One who is graduating from high school this week and another starting high school this fall. I feel lucky that both have been highly successful in the public school system here and want to assure that all kids are just as successful. Two of the most important objectives of our high schools are ensuring every student graduates and preparing every student to take advantage of the myriad of options available after graduation.

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TREE-SPIKERS DANGEROUS, AND WRONG — OPINION (Baker City Herald)

In an era when 49 people are shot dead solely because they went to have fun at a nightclub popular with the gay community, wed like to believe that no innocent lives will be jeopardized because some groups think we shouldn’t cut down some trees.

Yet it seems that a few misguided, and apparently conscienceless, defenders of Douglas-firs still believe that trees are more valuable than human lives.

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FISHING FOR A PIECE OF HISTORY: SALMON IN THE MALHEUR (Blue Mountain Eagle)

As 6-year-old Ukiah Snapp from Seneca stood in the middle of the Malheur River with a spear about twice as tall as he was, his grandmother, Charlotte Roderique, said she never thought he would have the opportunity to fish for salmon on the river after dams built years ago blocked their passage.

Roderique, the chairperson for the Burns Paiute Tribe, said the construction of the Warms Springs Dam in 1919 prevented salmon from traveling from the ocean all the way to the headwaters of the Malheur River in southern Grant County.

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READY FOR ANOTHER HECTIC FIRE SEASON (LaGrande Observer)

Bret Ruby’s job requires a certain amount of worrying, but he can ease his anxiety by looking at the Elkhorn and Wallowa Mountains and seeing their snowfields glimmering in the heat.

Ruby is the fire management officer for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.

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UNION SCHOOL DISTRICT RECEIVES $45,000 MATH GRANT FOR TECHNOLOGY (LaGrande Observer)

-Adaptive Math Learning Pilot grant from Oregon Department of Education to go toward Chromebooks-

The Union School Districts math program has received a technological boost.

The school district has received a $45,000 Adaptive Math Learning Pilot grant from the Oregon Department of Education.

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ANOTHER VOICE: GOVERNOR BROWN: RESPECT THE WILL OF HOOD RIVER VOTERS — GUEST OPINION (Hood River News)

Hood River County voters made history in the May 17 election. In a landslide victory, the Hood River County Water Protection Measure passed with 69 percent of voters supporting a ban on industrial-scale water bottling countywide. At issue was Nestles plan to bottle and sell more than 236 million gallons of publicly owned water each year. Gov. Kate Brown now has a clear mandate to tell Nestle once and for all the state is not interested in handing over public water from Oxbow Springs.

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GUEST COLUMN: FOCUS ON MEN’S HEALTH AND SAFETY THIS MONTH — GUEST OPINION (Douglas County News-Review)

In June, we celebrate Fathers Day, Men’s Health Month, and National Safety Month. These separate observances have a common theme we can use them as an opportunity to focus on the health of the men in our lives.

Men die from accidents at a rate averaging about 40 percent higher than women these higher rates begin in infancy. Accidental deaths include car accidents, overdoses, falls, fires, poisonings, drowning, and other unintentional causes.

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STATES NEW WAGE ZONES CAUSING PAY-RATE CONFUSION (Wallowa.com)

-Business owners finding compliance with new minimum wage rates can be tricky-

Oregon’s Bureau of Labor and Industries finalized new minimum wage rules June 15, requiring employers to pay a regional rate based on where the employee works more than 50 percent of the time.

As of July 1, the minimum wage in Wallowa County is going up by 25 cents per hour.

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EDITORIAL: GOVERNORS ARE SUPPOSED TO BE LEADERS — OPINION (Wallowa.com)

Any politician who stays in Washington, D.C., long enough will master the art of saying something while saying nothing. The congressman from Eastern Oregon, Greg Walden, is a master of the articulate non-statement.

Governors cannot afford such sleight of hand. After all, they are supposed to be leaders. We are also closer to them, physically. Congressmen can go to Washington to hide. Governors cannot.

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WILDFIRE BURNS NEARLY 100 ACRES WEST OF THE DALLES (KTVZ Bend)

-Cause under investigation-

A wildfire that ignited Monday afternoon burned nearly 100 acres five miles west of The Dalles in the Oregon Department of Forestry’s Central Oregon District, the agency said Tuesday.

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NOW WE KNOW WHAT HAPPENS TO TEENS WHEN YOU MAKE POT LEGAL— BLOG (Washington Post)

Rates of marijuana use among Colorado’s teenagers are essentially unchanged in the years since the state’s voters legalized marijuana in 2012, new survey data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment shows.

In 2015, 21 percent of Colorado youths had used marijuana in the past 30 days. That rate is slightly lower than the national average and down slightly from the 25 percent who used marijuana in 2009, before legalization.

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 22, 2016 OSL eClips

June 21, 2016 OSL eClips

* Angry residents challenge inconclusive air pollution study in N Portland
* Alleged DUII driver was home free upon crossing border into Oregon, despite WSP trooper who tailed him
* Kate Brown, the invisible candidate: Editorial — Opinion
* Lawmakers must protect kids from lead in schools opinion — Guest Opinion
* Brown’s empty chair — Opinion
* I-5/Wilsonville Road interchange discussed by Wilsonville council
* Buckman pool closes for lead, additional 7 PPS rooms need radon fixes
* Forget Californians – most Portland area moves are local
* Going on a road trip? You’ll probably end up in Oregon
* My View: Limit lawmaker use of emergency clause — Guest Opinion
* Governor needs to oppose gross receipts tax — Opinion
* PPS closes Buckman pool, high school cafeteria for lead, radon concerns
* Wilderness proposals in northeast of Madras stalled
* The many votes that weren’t counted
* Irrigation districts participate in program
* Editorial: Brown is wrong to skip debate — Opinion
* Column: Why I was wrong about welfare reform — Guest Opinion
* Breaking Down The Oregon Initiative To Raise Slumping Graduation Rates
* Feds Kick In Money For Oregon Disaster Recovery
* Maritime weigh-in rule dispute appears resolved
* 9th Circuit ponders local GMO authority
* Veterans team up to take on NE Oregon wildfires
* Jury scam making local rounds in Umatilla County
* Jackson County escapes state’s ‘distressed’ list
* Workers find possible signs of lead pipes in west Medford
* Coos Bay Schools tackle chronic absences
* Editorial: Weyco gift is a step away from disaster — Opinion
* Editorial: Why the silence? — Opinion
* Editorial: Schedule bill adds to business woes — Opinion
* Feds Kick In Money For Oregon Disaster Recovery

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ANGRY RESIDENTS CHALLENGE INCONCLUSIVE AIR POLLUTION STUDY IN N PORTLAND (Portland Oregonian)

A $375,000 study has not yet found the source of odors in North Portland, and it found air pollution no higher than levels detected at another monitoring station nearby, state regulators reported on Monday.

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ALLEGED DUII DRIVER WAS HOME FREE UPON CROSSING BORDER INTO OREGON, DESPITE WSP TROOPER WHO TAILED HIM (Portland Oregonian)

The Oregon Court of Appeals has reversed the drunken driving conviction of a Beaverton man who was spotted driving erratically by a Washington State Patrol trooper because the trooper hadn’t managed to pull the driver over until he had crossed into Oregon.

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KATE BROWN, THE INVISIBLE CANDIDATE: EDITORIAL — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

There’s big news these days in the world of Harry Potter, the fictional wizard conjured up by J.K. Rowling.

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LAWMAKERS MUST PROTECT KIDS FROM LEAD IN SCHOOLS — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

For the past few weeks, parents, teachers, students and community members have been rightfully shocked and outraged about the fact that water in some Portland Public Schools facilities tested for high levels of lead, and that the public wasn’t told about these levels for some time.

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BROWN’S EMPTY CHAIR — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

At least she didn’t concoct an excuse about a scheduling conflict. Kate Browns campaign said last week the governor would not debate her Republican opponent at next months Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association meeting because she wants to devote full attention to her official duties and leave politicking until after Labor Day, when voters start paying attention to the race.

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I-5/WILSONVILLE ROAD INTERCHANGE DISCUSSED BY WILSONVILLE COUNCIL (Portland Tribune)

Though some of the projects may be more aspirational than imminent, the Wilsonville City Council voted unanimously June 6 to approve a set of amendments to its Transportation System Plan TSP  with the addition of several projects intended to address traffic near the I-5/Boones Ferry Road/Wilsonville Road area.

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BUCKMAN POOL CLOSES FOR LEAD, ADDITIONAL 7 PPS ROOMS NEED RADON FIXES (Portland Tribune)

A small inner Southeast Portland swimming pool is the latest to fall victim to Portland Public Schools’ battle with lead.

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FORGET CALIFORNIANS – MOST PORTLAND AREA MOVES ARE LOCAL (Portland Tribune)

By now many Portlanders have heard that Oregon is the top moving destination in the country, according to the annual survey compiled by United Van Lines.

Approximately 70 percent of those who move to Oregon settle in the Portland metro area, which is why outsiders are widely blamed for driving up housing costs here. Portland has the 12th highest rents in the country and the average home price topped $400,000 for the first time in May.

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GOING ON A ROAD TRIP? YOU’LL PROBABLY END UP IN OREGON (Portland Tribune)

America is going on a road trip this summer, and guess where it will end up? Right here in Oregon.

Thats according to a new WalletHub survey that says Oregon is the No. 1 destination for a summer road trip.

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MY VIEW: LIMIT LAWMAKER USE OF EMERGENCY CLAUSE — GUEST OPINION (Portland Tribune)

During the presidential primary season, Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump attacked their parties nominating processes as rigged against rank-and-file citizens.

For sheer voter disenfranchisement, however, those processes have nothing on Oregon legislators abuse of the emergency clause  an abuse Oregonians soon may get a chance to end.

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GOVERNOR NEEDS TO OPPOSE GROSS RECEIPTS TAX — OPINION (Portland Tribune)

Kate Brown needs to demonstrate she is the governor for all of Oregon, and not just a leader for the public employee unions.

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PPS CLOSES BUCKMAN POOL, HIGH SCHOOL CAFETERIA FOR LEAD, RADON CONCERNS (Portland Tribune)

A small inner Southeast Portland swimming pool is the latest to fall victim to Portland Public Schools’ battle with lead.

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WILDERNESS PROPOSALS IN NORTHEAST OF MADRAS STALLED (Bend Bulletin)

-Cathedral Rock, Horse Heaven plans would protect more than 17,000 acres-

Efforts to create new wilderness areas near the John Day River northeast of Madras have stalled, but backers have resolved to keep trying.

The proposal is centered on two separate areas, Horse Heaven and Cathedral Rock, encompassing about 17,300 acres of would-be wilderness.

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THE MANY VOTES THAT WEREN’T COUNTED (Bend Bulletin)

-Voters may never know theirs was rejected-

One vote. Or, more specifically, one valid vote.

That’s all it would have taken to avoid a tie between a Republican and a Democrat seeking the Independent Party nomination for an Oregon House seat.

It turns out, there were at least two more Independent Party votes out there, but they didn’t count.

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IRRIGATION DISTRICTS PARTICIPATE IN PROGRAM (Bend Bulletin)

Eight irrigation districts in Central Oregon are taking part in a water-saving program that recently won a national award.

The program seeks to modernize irrigation systems by replacing open canals with piping to keep water from evaporating or leaking while being diverted to farms and ranches.

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EDITORIAL: BROWN IS WRONG TO SKIP DEBATE — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Gov. Kate Brown apparently thinks the road to an elected governorship is clear only if she keeps her mouth shut, her head down and her views on things that matter to Oregonians to herself. Thus, she has said she will not participate in what traditionally has been the first political debate of the election season.

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COLUMN: WHY I WAS WRONG ABOUT WELFARE REFORM — GUEST OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

In 1996, President Bill Clinton signed a controversial compromise bill for welfare reform, promising to end welfare as we know it.

I was sympathetic to that goal at the time, but Ive decided that I was wrong. What Ive found in my reporting over the years is that welfare reform is a misnomer and that cash welfare is essentially dead, leaving some families with children utterly destitute.

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BREAKING DOWN THE OREGON INITIATIVE TO RAISE SLUMPING GRADUATION RATES (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

There are a few initiative petitions making the rounds these days aimed at public schools.

The one getting the most attention is a ballot measure formerly known as IP 28  a tax increase of historic proportions that’s already drawing focused opposition from business groups, but is seen as a game changer among public school advocates.

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FEDS KICK IN MONEY FOR OREGON DISASTER RECOVERY (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Oregon is getting some federal aid to help pay for damages sustained during a series of strong winter storms.

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MARITIME WEIGH-IN RULE DISPUTE APPEARS RESOLVED (Capital Press)

The possibility of slowdowns again plaguing West Coast seaports was averted June 17 when ocean carriers agreed to accept combined cargo-container weights from marine terminals instead of requiring them from exporters.

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9TH CIRCUIT PONDERS LOCAL GMO AUTHORITY (Capital Press)

If the USDA has only limited authority over biotechnology, how much power do states and counties have to restrict genetically engineered crops?

This question arose from a pivotal ruling issued by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals three years ago, and the appellate court will probably soon have to answer it.

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VETERANS TEAM UP TO TAKE ON NE OREGON WILDFIRES (East Oregonian)

The military veterans marched single file toward a plume of white smoke, dressed in full gear and ready for their first taste of action on the front lines.

Armed with pulaskis, shovels and chainsaws, they quickly surrounded the slow-moving forest fire and dug a ring of dirt to stop it from spreading. Taking cues from their squad boss, the team worked in lockstep and called out every move in order to stay together.

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JURY SCAM MAKING LOCAL ROUNDS IN UMATILLA COUNTY (East Oregonian)

A jury duty scam is circulating throughout Umatilla County. Trial court administrator Roy Blaine warns the fraud is aimed at taking your money.

Blaine in a written statement Monday reported a swindler has called people around Umatilla County and claims to be a Umatilla County sheriffs deputy warning whoever answers there is a warrant for their arrest for failing to report for jury duty. The caller asked people for credit card information or to have them purchase a cash card and give them the number from it.

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JACKSON COUNTY ESCAPES STATE’S ‘DISTRESSED’ LIST (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Josephine, Douglas, Curry, Polk Counties on distressed list-

Jackson County’s financial situation has improved enough for it to be taken off a state list of distressed counties, but several neighboring counties  Josephine, Douglas and Curry  remain on the list.

In 2014, nine counties were on the list, including Jackson County.

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WORKERS FIND POSSIBLE SIGNS OF LEAD PIPES IN WEST MEDFORD (Medford Mail Tribune)

An inspection of 317 water meters in west Medford on Monday uncovered clues at 15 houses of the possibility of lead pipes, which will require some street excavation and water quality testing.

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COOS BAY SCHOOLS TACKLE CHRONIC ABSENCES (The World)

-New study shows what missing one day of school means-

By a number of measures, Oregon is number one in the nation for chronic school absenteeism. But Coos Bay School District’s special programs director, Lisa DeSalvio, and the district’s new tribal attendance advocate, Bre Landrum, are reaching out to fix the problem here.

The issue is especially important in light of a recent study showing what chronic absenteeism means for a child’s education as a whole.

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EDITORIAL: WEYCO GIFT IS A STEP AWAY FROM DISASTER — OPINION (Daily Astorian)

One of the most horrific aspects of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake in China was the number of schools that collapsed, resulting in 7,000 wrecked classrooms. Up to 10,000 children died and another 15,000 were injured.

The instinct to protect children is universal, but money all too often gets in the way of reasonable safety measures.

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EDITORIAL: WHY THE SILENCE? — OPINION (Daily Astorian)

-County commissioners must set expectations for mental health agency-

If you have lived in Clatsop County for the past two decades, you have seen more than one mental health treatment crisis. This months resignations at Clatsop Behavioral Healthcare are the most recent installment.

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EDITORIAL: SCHEDULE BILL ADDS TO BUSINESS WOES — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

Its been a rough stretch lately for Oregon businesses in the halls of the state Capitol.

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FEDS KICK IN MONEY FOR OREGON DISASTER RECOVERY (KUOW)

Oregon is getting some federal aid to help pay for damages sustained during a series of strong winter storms. The severe weather included strong winds and heavy rains that triggered flooding and mudslides over the course of two weeks last December.

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BIRTH CONTROL VIA APP FINDS FOOTING UNDER POLITICAL RADAR (New York Times)

A quiet shift is taking place in how women obtain birth control. A growing assortment of new apps and websites now make it possible to get prescription contraceptives without going to the doctor.

The development has potential to be more than just a convenience for women already on birth control. Public health experts hope it will encourage more to start, or restart, using contraception and help reduce the country’s stubbornly high rate of unintended pregnancies, as well as the rate of abortions.

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newspapers: http://bit.ly/1IjlkDj

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 21, 2016 OSL eClips

June 20, 2016 eClips Weekend Edition

State Library eClips

* Oregon lawmakers could look at pay-by-the-mile transportation tax in 2017
* How do you reclaim the site of a mass murder? UCC’s Snyder Hall offers lesson in hope
* Cold water, fast currents — Northwest tribes risk Willamette Falls to harvest annual lamprey migration
* Cancer-causing radon gas shuts Portland school cafeteria
* Oregon health insurance rates to jump again in 2017
* Women in construction break down barriers in male-dominated industry
* Change state’s ‘physical injury’ definition to better protect abused children: Editorial — Opinion
* More money for safety, sanitation needed at Columbia River tribal sites, says federal bill
* Oregon businesses brace for fight over employee scheduling: Editorial Agenda 2016 — Opinion
* Peter Courtney recall flops: Editorial Peak — Opinion
* Oregon must test more aggressively for toxic substances in rivers — Guest Opinion
* Oregon moves to protect Ocean’s small fish from hooks, nets
* Ocean salmon fishing seasons begin next week
* Federal government must step up rail safety — Guest Opinion
* Oregon calls for indefinite moratorium on oil trains through the state
* David Sarasohn: Orlando’s massacre and Oregon’s lessons — Opinion
* Feds give Oregon nearly $2 million for dental work for the poor
* Polk County at ‘higher risk of distress’ on state financial report
* Get over it: We don’t have a pure democracy — Opinion
* Why Oregon’s Owyhee deserves protection — Guest Opinion
* Marijuana growers, processors face numerous and complex rules
* High levels of lead found in water at two Eugene schools, new test results show
* Seneca wood-burning power plant wins additional $1 million taxpayer subsidy
* A lab technician for the Oregon State police lab in Bend is suspected of removing drugs and replacing them with over-the-counter medications
* IP 28, a hidden sales tax, would damage Oregon economy — Guest Opinion
* Clackamas County finds 341 misplaced ballots
* Eight metro-area projects in line for state bonds
* State board adds two metro-area highway projects
* What do outsiders think about Oregon?
* Restoring fish runs on Deschutes a work in progress
* State: Big health insurance rate hikes necessary, in most cases
* State report shows counties rebounding financially
* Tied Independent race ends by rolling dice, goes to GOP
* Q&A: Analyzing the new rules for salaried workers overtime pay
* Editorial: Don’t judge Oregon Promise too soon — Opinion
* Editorial: Help from Merkley on wildfires — Opinion
* Editorial: Find better solution for ODFW funding — Opinion
* Pendleton May Lose Airport
* No Oregon School Districts Have Submitted Radon Testing Plans To State
* Tracks Passed Safety Inspection Weeks Before Mosier Derailment
* 9 Oregon Colleges Could Be Affected By Federal Accreditation Decision
* Portland Heads Toward Construction Tax To Fund More Housing
* Wuerthner: Blame the market, not environmental regulation — Guest Opinion
* House speakers visit built an important bridge — Opinion
* Vale officials trying to solve pipe mystery
* Watershed tour highlights benefits of area conservation efforts
* Goodbye El Nino, hello La Nina
* Water worries lead to a different kind of school test
* Our View: Keep wolf predation in perspective — Opinion
* Oregon DA is gunning for justice in review of convictions
* No cause for panic, but take precautions — Opinion
* Fred Wahl Marine one of top state marine projects for funding
* Free to learn: Young inmates step up to earn their diplomas
* Land gift clears way for new high school
* No cars allowed in Astoria Basin
* Guest column: Oregon’s economy: Weeds in the rose garden? — Guest Opinion
* Mental health agency turns to veteran
* Wah Chang’s Cold War casualties
* Think Too Much: County study highlights similarities — Opinion
* Workers raise fairness issues
* After The Fire
* A call for safer trains — Opinion
* What happened to Ray?
* Troy residents live in wake of Grizzly Bear Complex Fire
* County sits comfortably in audit report
* MY VOICE: Treat wildfires like natural disasters — Guest Opinion
* OUR VIEW: Brown not walking the walk — Opinion
* Another Voice: Leadership needed in dealing with threats from oil trains in the Gorge — Guest Opinion
* Curry needs to slash more from budget
* U.S. Senate bill aims to ease banking for marijuana companies
* Federal spending bill touted as ‘win for rural Oregon’
* James Nash named to Oregon Recreation Task Force
* Oregon insurance regulators agree rates need to rise next year — Blog
* Moda just about ready to come out from extra state supervision — Blog
* Oregon: Stop sending oil by rail
* Cali Approves Sky-High Rate Increases for Individual Health Plans
* Public Health to seek $30 million for Modernization in 2017-2019 biennium

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OREGON LAWMAKERS COULD LOOK AT PAY-BY-THE-MILE TRANSPORTATION TAX IN 2017 (Portland Oregonian)

A new tax based on how much people drive could be among the transportation funding ideas lawmakers consider in 2017, according to a member of the task force exploring the idea.

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HOW DO YOU RECLAIM THE SITE OF A MASS MURDER? UCC’S SNYDER HALL OFFERS LESSON IN HOPE (Portland Oregonian)

Christina Anderson stepped back into the boarded-up building and tried to remember it as the place where she took some of her first classes and made some of her first friends at Umpqua Community College.

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COLD WATER, FAST CURRENTS — NORTHWEST TRIBES RISK WILLAMETTE FALLS TO HARVEST ANNUAL LAMPREY MIGRATION (Portland Oregonian)

Cold water beat down on Zach Penney’s shoulders. Struggling in his black tank top to keep the shivers in check, he plunged his head under Willamette Falls and searched for a lamprey suctioned to the vertical rock wall.

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CANCER-CAUSING RADON GAS SHUTS PORTLAND SCHOOL CAFETERIA (Portland Oregonian)

The cafeteria at Alliance High School in Northeast Portland has been closed after a second round of testing showed dangerously high levels of cancer-causing radon gas, Portland school district officials announced late Friday afternoon.

The test results indicate they were emailed to the school district on Tuesday; it was unclear why school district officials waited three days to make them public

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OREGON HEALTH INSURANCE RATES TO JUMP AGAIN IN 2017 (Portland Oregonian)

After a brutal two years in which they lost a collective $253.3 million, Oregon’s health insurers are again seeking double-digit price hikes in 2017.

As tentatively approved by state regulators, All ten companies offering individual health policies will raise rates in 2017, from 9.8 percent for Health Net Health Plan of Oregon to 17.9 percent for Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Oregon  to 29.3 percent for Moda Health Plan.

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WOMEN IN CONSTRUCTION BREAK DOWN BARRIERS IN MALE-DOMINATED INDUSTRY (Portland Oregonian)

“I was just built for construction,” said Ashley Dowd as she stepped down from a ladder, masking tape in hand.

The pink Nike swoosh on her shoes matches her pink T-shirt that reads “Western Spray Foam.”

Dowd insulates homes with spray foam for a living, alongside coworker Jennifer Frazier.

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CHANGE STATE’S ‘PHYSICAL INJURY’ DEFINITION TO BETTER PROTECT ABUSED CHILDREN: EDITORIAL — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

It’s difficult to look at the photos of 1-year-old Jacob Marbury’s bruised face and not feel bewildered by the Washington County district attorney’s initial reluctance to charge the suspected abuser.

But as The Oregonian/OregonLive’s Emily Smith and Aimee Green have reported, prosecutors have shied away from pursuing several possible abuse cases involving young children in recent years. Why? Because bruises  even one showing a handprint as in Jacob’s case  don’t necessarily amount to “physical injury” in the eyes of the courts.

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MORE MONEY FOR SAFETY, SANITATION NEEDED AT COLUMBIA RIVER TRIBAL SITES, SAYS FEDERAL BILL (Portland Oregonian)

A new bill in the U.S. Senate would create cleaner, safer fishing sites for tribal fishing crews on the Columbia River.

U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Oregon, carved out space in the U.S. Department of Interior appropriations bill to fund more sanitation and law enforcement services for the 31 fishing camps in Oregon and Washington where members of the Warm Spring,

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OREGON BUSINESSES BRACE FOR FIGHT OVER EMPLOYEE SCHEDULING: EDITORIAL AGENDA 2016 — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

State lawmakers have thrown a lot at Oregon businesses lately. Last year, they required all but the smallest businesses to provide paid sick leave to employees. Earlier this year, they hiked the state’s minimum wage, which already was among the nation’s highest. Looming on the horizon, meanwhile, is a public vote on a tax hike that would cost big businesses  and small businesses and consumers, too  billions of dollars every year.

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PETER COURTNEY RECALL FLOPS: EDITORIAL PEAK — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

In the end, a misguided push to recall Sen. Peter Courtney, D-Salem, fizzled for lack of support. “We actually got pretty close” to gathering enough signatures to force a vote, recall campaign head Matt Geiger told The Oregonian/OregonLive’s Hillary Borrud. “But, ultimately, our goal was to put Sen. Courtney on notice that he can’t skate by and ignore the people in his community.”

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OREGON MUST TEST MORE AGGRESSIVELY FOR TOXIC SUBSTANCES IN RIVERS — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

Over the past few months we have heard a lot about air quality in Oregon related to toxics emissions, and rightfully so. Clearly there are significant issues that need to be addressed, and one of these is better understanding the extent of harmful pollutants in our air.

What we would be well-served to understand is that toxics testing across the board in Oregon is simply insufficient, especially as it applies to our rivers.

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OREGON MOVES TO PROTECT OCEAN’S SMALL FISH FROM HOOKS, NETS (Portland Oregonian)

Starting this fall, Oregon commercial anglers looking to target a new fish at the bottom of the ocean food chain may first have to prove they can do so sustainably.

Fish managers at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife have crafted a plan to ban all new forage fisheries in state-regulated waters, unless anglers can prove they can target the fish without harming the ecosystem. The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission is expected to consider adopting the policy at its September meeting.

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OCEAN SALMON FISHING SEASONS BEGIN NEXT WEEK (Portland Oregonian)

The long-awaited ocean coho salmon season begins Saturday, June 25, off most of the Oregon Coast, with the area off the mouth of the Columbia River open to chinook and coho the following Friday, July 1.

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FEDERAL GOVERNMENT MUST STEP UP RAIL SAFETY — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

Standing in Mosier Middle School’s gym, breathing the acrid smoke from the burning oil cars just yards away, brought into sharp focus for me the serious danger that regularly rolls through Oregon. While the derailment of a crude oil train along the Columbia River Gorge June 3 may not have been the worst-case scenario Oregon has been preparing for, it was close enough to show how imperiled the Columbia River is and how easily the small community of Mosier  or another Oregon town  could have been destroyed.

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OREGON CALLS FOR INDEFINITE MORATORIUM ON OIL TRAINS THROUGH THE STATE (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon has asked the Federal Railroad Administration to place an open-ended moratorium on oil trains traveling through the state, because preliminary findings of an investigation into the June 3 derailment in Mosier suggest inspectors might not be able to detect the problem that likely caused the crash.

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DAVID SARASOHN: ORLANDO’S MASSACRE AND OREGON’S LESSONS — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

Oregon has never had a mass killing on the scale of last weekend’s atrocity in Orlando, although we all know this could change at any moment, even in the time between these words being written and being read. At any moment we  or any other Americans  could look up and see CNN showing pictures of large numbers of our loved ones, see our local police chiefs telling a hastily assembled press conference that it’s too soon to understand just what happened.

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FEDS GIVE OREGON NEARLY $2 MILLION FOR DENTAL WORK FOR THE POOR (Portland Oregonian)

The federal government announced Thursday it is awarding $1.75 million to five health centers in Oregon to give the poor greater access to dental care.

The grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services is part of $470 million awarded to clinics nationwide to improve oral health care to patients who rely on federally funded health centers.

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POLK COUNTY AT ‘HIGHER RISK OF DISTRESS’ ON STATE FINANCIAL REPORT (Salem Statesman Journal)

Polk County remains as one of four Oregon counties “at higher risk of distress,” according to a recent Secretary of State report, but county commissioners said they have already taken steps to improve their fiscal status.

The report, released Tuesday, is the latest in a series of reports by the state every two years since 2012, with the intent of informing state legislators and county commissioners about regional needs. The next report is scheduled to be released in 2018.

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GET OVER IT: WE DON’T HAVE A PURE DEMOCRACY — OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)

The Founders gave us a republic. Some Oregonians and their fellow Americans seemingly want to change it into a pure democracy, in which we the people make all the decisions.

The difference is that in our republic  a representative democracy  we elect people to make decisions on our behalf. That includes decisions with which we the people may disagree.

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WHY OREGON’S OWYHEE DESERVES PROTECTION — GUEST OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)

As a third-generation Malheur County resident, I was raised with a view of the Owyhee Canyonlands from my bedroom window.

Recently I traveled hundreds of miles to Salem  along with over 150 other sportsmen, veterans, parents, small business owners and citizens from every corner of Oregon  to tell the House Committee on Rural Communities and our other elected officials why permanently protecting Oregons Owyhee Canyonlands is vital to our states incredible natural heritage, way of life and economy.

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MARIJUANA GROWERS, PROCESSORS FACE NUMEROUS AND COMPLEX RULES (Eugene Register-Guard)

As recreational marijuana cultivation emerges from decades in the shadows in Oregon, residents face a vexing challenge: Where will new licensed farms, processing plants and retailers be allowed to locate?

Banned outright in big chunks of the state, recreational marijuana facilities face a complicated patchwork of quickly drafted local land-use laws in areas, such as Lane County, that are allowing them.

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HIGH LEVELS OF LEAD FOUND IN WATER AT TWO EUGENE SCHOOLS, NEW TEST RESULTS SHOW (Eugene Register-Guard)

Additional water sampling tests completed at fixtures in three Eugene School District schools and the District Education Center revealed elevated levels of lead in drinking water at more faucets, drinking fountains and other fixtures, district officials said.

District spokeswoman Kerry Delf provided numbers showing extremely high levels of lead in the water in some locations, including at Sheldon High School and Roosevelt Middle School.

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SENECA WOOD-BURNING POWER PLANT WINS ADDITIONAL $1 MILLION TAXPAYER SUBSIDY (Eugene Register-Guard)

-Company wins lawsuit against the Oregon Department of Energy-

Seneca Sustainable Energy LLC, the company that operates a wood-burning power plant north of Eugene, has prevailed in its lawsuit against the Oregon Department of Energy, winning an extra $1 million taxpayer subsidy.

The state Department of Energy previously had issued Seneca a tax credit subsidy worth $10 million. Seneca had sued, arguing that under state rules it was due $11 million.

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A LAB TECHNICIAN FOR THE OREGON STATE POLICE LAB IN BEND IS SUSPECTED OF REMOVING DRUGS AND REPLACING THEM WITH OVER-THE-COUNTER MEDICATIONS (Eugene Register-Guard)

At first, authorities in Oregon believed the lab tech had been stealing drugs from just one batch of evidence. Then they saw drugs were missing from other cases she had worked. And then they finally concluded she had also stolen evidence from ones she had not worked on.

The number of possibly contaminated convictions grew, from one to now around 1,500 in central Oregon’s Deschutes County alone.

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IP 28, A HIDDEN SALES TAX, WOULD DAMAGE OREGON ECONOMY — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

Proponents of Initiative Petition 28 claim that the lives of everyday Oregonians will improve by taking an extra $6 billion every two years from taxpayers, and giving it to the state government.

They say this even though state spending is at an all-time high, our government workers are now better paid and have much better medical and retirement benefits than private-sector workers, and in many Oregon communities the best newly built buildings are for the government, not the private sector.

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CLACKAMAS COUNTY FINDS 341 MISPLACED BALLOTS (Portland Tribune)

Clackamas County elections officials announced Friday that a box containing 341 ballots  including some from Multnomah and Washington counties  was discovered earlier this week during a final inventory of election equipment.

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EIGHT METRO-AREA PROJECTS IN LINE FOR STATE BONDS (Portland Tribune)

-They would share $45 million statewide for work other than highways.-

Eight metro-area transportation projects are in line for a share of state bond proceeds for work other than on highways.

Among the projects are a new auto staging facility at the Port of Portland, completion of a pedestrian and bicycle trail in Tigard, and rail improvements to allow quicker movement of passenger and freight trains in and out of Portland.

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STATE BOARD ADDS TWO METRO-AREA HIGHWAY PROJECTS (Portland Tribune)

-But local officials say millions more needed to make improvements a reality.-

Two metro-area highway projects to ease the movement of trucks and traffic have been added by the Oregon Transportation Commission to its four-year statewide plan.

One project adds a southbound auxiliary lane on Interstate 5 from Highway 217 in Tigard about four miles to Interstate 205 in Tualatin.

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WHAT DO OUTSIDERS THINK ABOUT OREGON? (Portland Tribune)

-Rain, trees, guns and hippies are among the rest of the nation’s perceptions of our state-

Oregon politicians frequently talk about the state as a progressive vanguard, touting its support for alternative energy, worker rights, and doctor-assisted suicide.

But across the country, most people still think of Oregon the way former Gov. Tom McCall described it: a nice place to visit. The states natural beauty was by far the most common thing mentioned in a recent national survey conducted by DHM Research. That was followed by access to outdoor recreation.

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RESTORING FISH RUNS ON DESCHUTES A WORK IN PROGRESS (Bend Bulletin)

-Workshop explores dam, fishery, basin topics-

Efforts to reintroduce salmon on the Deschutes River have not yet resulted in numbers to support a sustainable run, and recent concerns have questioned the fish passage operations and the rivers water quality  but restoring the upstream salmon may just take time.

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STATE: BIG HEALTH INSURANCE RATE HIKES NECESSARY, IN MOST CASES (Bend Bulletin)

The double digit rate increases proposed by most health insurance carriers in Oregon for 2017 individual policies are very likely to become reality.

The Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services, whose Division of Financial Regulation oversees the health insurance industry, released its preliminary decisions today in response to last months proposals from carriers.

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STATE REPORT SHOWS COUNTIES REBOUNDING FINANCIALLY (Bend Bulletin)

-Central Oregon counties have shown increased financial stability in recent years-

A state report released this week revealed Deschutes County is among many other Oregon county governments that have increased their financial stability in recent years.

The average income per person in the county increased while the unemployment rate dropped, two of the financial indicators the Oregon Secretary of States Office studied for its report.

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TIED INDEPENDENT RACE ENDS BY ROLLING DICE, GOES TO GOP (Bend Bulletin)

A roll of the dice this week determined which candidate in a tied race for a key seat in the state Legislature got the nomination of Oregon’s Independent Party, the third largest by voter count and the states newest major party.

Republican Dan Mason rolled a six at the Capitol building in Salem on Friday to beat his Democratic opponent Janeen Sollman, who rolled a three.

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Q&A: ANALYZING THE NEW RULES FOR SALARIED WORKERS OVERTIME PAY (Bend Bulletin)

Millions of additional Americans will qualify for overtime pay under a major change in federal labor law announced recently by the Obama administration.

The change under the Fair Labor Standards Act doubles the annual salary threshold  to $47,476 from the current $23,660  that generally determines who qualifies for overtime pay when they work more than 40 hours a week.

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EDITORIAL: DON’T JUDGE OREGON PROMISE TOO SOON — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

The state of Tennessee is about a year ahead of Oregon in its effort to provide as much as two years community college tuition money to students who qualify. Its Tennessee Promise students are completing the first year of the program this spring; Oregon Promise students will begin this states first year in the fall.

The programs share similarities.

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EDITORIAL: HELP FROM MERKLEY ON WILDFIRES — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

Sen. Jeff Merkley, D-Ore., may have just helped temporarily solve a big problem in the national forests.

The problem is fire borrowing. The U.S. Forest Service and the Department of Interior almost always dont have enough money in their budgets to handle all their wildfire fighting costs.

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EDITORIAL: FIND BETTER SOLUTION FOR ODFW FUNDING — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)

The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has problems, serious ones. Lawmakers have changed the agency’s funding model over the years, and that, combined with changing interests of Oregonians, has left the agency chronically short of cash.

Its time lawmakers either change the agency’s mission to fit current revenues or find enough money in the states general fund to finance whats currently expected of it.

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PENDLETON MAY LOSE AIRPORT (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Pendleton’s Eastern Oregon Regional Airport is at risk of losing much needed federal subsidies. Airport manager Steve Chrisman walks us through the economic implications of this change.

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NO OREGON SCHOOL DISTRICTS HAVE SUBMITTED RADON TESTING PLANS TO STATE (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Not a single school district has told the state of Oregon how it plans to test for radon gas. Every district in the state is required to do so by September 1.

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TRACKS PASSED SAFETY INSPECTION WEEKS BEFORE MOSIER DERAILMENT (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Over the last several days, Oregon transportation officials have provided not only a clearer understanding of what may have led to this months oil train derailment in the Columbia River Gorge, but also the rigorous level of safety checks they say were performed just weeks before 16 cars left the tracks in Mosier, causing a riverside inferno.

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9 OREGON COLLEGES COULD BE AFFECTED BY FEDERAL ACCREDITATION DECISION (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

Federal education officials are recommending that one of the country’s major college accrediting authorities lose that power. But state leaders in Oregon are urging patience.

The U.S. Department of Educations threat against the Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools is the latest chapter in the federal crackdown on for-profit colleges.

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PORTLAND HEADS TOWARD CONSTRUCTION TAX TO FUND MORE HOUSING (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

The Portland City Council plans to vote next week on a 1 percent tax on new residential and commercial construction to fund affordable housing.

Earlier this year, the Oregon lawmakers passed Senate Bill 1533, which ended a state ban on construction excise taxes and allowed inclusionary zoning.

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WUERTHNER: BLAME THE MARKET, NOT ENVIRONMENTAL REGULATION — GUEST OPINION (East Oregonian)

Critics of public lands like to say that timber jobs declined and mills closed over the last 20 years because environmental protections such as the Endangered Species Act and other laws made the cost of logging skyrocket. This complaint is repeated so often it is usually stated as unqualified truth.

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HOUSE SPEAKERS VISIT BUILT AN IMPORTANT BRIDGE — OPINION (Argus Observer)

An important milestone happened earlier this month: Oregon’s speaker of the House visited Ontario.

Some of those who heard Tina Kotek speak at a breakfast meeting in Ontario, or who had a chance to visit with the Portland Democrat while she was here, said it was the first time they could remember a speaker visiting this side of the state.

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VALE OFFICIALS TRYING TO SOLVE PIPE MYSTERY (Argus Observer)

After tests from the Oregon Health Authority revealed that schools in districts in Portland, Beaverton and Eugene showed elevated levels of lead in the schools drinking water, the Oregon Department of Education and the Health Authority recommended school districts across the state test their water for lead this summer.

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WATERSHED TOUR HIGHLIGHTS BENEFITS OF AREA CONSERVATION EFFORTS (Argus Observer)

They began as a way to improve water quality, but water conservation projects over the last 10 to 15 years  or more  have provided numerous benefits that have helped producers bottom lines.

That was the theme of Thursdays watershed tour sponsored by the Malheur Watershed Council. The tour allowed participants to examine techniques and projects that have financial benefits, as well as environmental benefits beyond creating cleaner water.

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GOODBYE EL NINO, HELLO LA NINA (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Forecasters say changing ocean temps may mean a wetter winter-

Another wetter-than-usual winter could be coming to the Northwest, forecasters say. But there’s no way to predict whether it will extend as far south as Southern Oregon.

The forecast is based on surface waters in the eastern Pacific Ocean, which are cooling and expected to continue cooling through the summer months.

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WATER WORRIES LEAD TO A DIFFERENT KIND OF SCHOOL TEST (Medford Mail Tribune)

-Water worries lead to a different kind of school test-

School districts are testing water for lead in school drinking fountains and faucets across the Rogue Valley.

The testing was recommended by the Oregon Health Authority and Oregon Department of Education just weeks after startling results from Portland Public Schools’ tests, conducted over the last seven years, came to light.

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OUR VIEW: KEEP WOLF PREDATION IN PERSPECTIVE — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)

It was only a matter of time before Southern Oregon’s growing wolf population came into conflict with domestic livestock. Now that a wolf has killed a sheep and at least one goat in Jackson County, it’s important to keep the incident in perspective.

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OREGON DA IS GUNNING FOR JUSTICE IN REVIEW OF CONVICTIONS (The World)

At first, authorities in Oregon believed the lab tech had been stealing drugs from just one batch of evidence. Then they saw drugs were missing from other cases she had worked. And then they finally concluded she had also stolen evidence from ones she had not worked on.

The number of possibly contaminated convictions grew, from one to now around 1,500 in central Oregon’s Deschutes County alone.

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NO CAUSE FOR PANIC, BUT TAKE PRECAUTIONS — OPINION (The World)

The discovery that some Coos Bay school drinking water shows signs of lead is obviously disheartening. But we shouldn’t be completely surprised, nor should we panic.

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FRED WAHL MARINE ONE OF TOP STATE MARINE PROJECTS FOR FUNDING (The World)

Fred Wahl Marine Construction’s multimillion-dollar proposal to have an indoor year-round shipbuilding operation is one of the top nine transportation projects in the state now under consideration for government grant dollars.

The state Area Commission on Transportation met June 14 at the Portland Holiday Inn and among other proposals, considered that of the Reedsport firm.

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FREE TO LEARN: YOUNG INMATES STEP UP TO EARN THEIR DIPLOMAS (Daily Astorian)

On graduation day at South Jetty High School, 10 students proudly received their diplomas, joining two others who had graduated earlier and another who passed his GED exam Thursday. The milestone meant a quarter of the inmate population inside the North Coast Youth Correctional Facility had finished high school.

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LAND GIFT CLEARS WAY FOR NEW HIGH SCHOOL (Daily Astorian)

The school in one of the most dangerous locations in America could find a new home. Seaside High School, located in the tsunami inundation zone, will receive an 80-acre gift from Weyerhaeuser Co. for a new school campus located out of the tsunami inundation zone.

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NO CARS ALLOWED IN ASTORIA BASIN (Daily Astorian)

The state Department of Forestry has restricted motorized access to the Astoria Basin at Williamsport Forest Road off of state Highway 202 to lower the risk of fire and garbage-dumping.

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GUEST COLUMN: OREGONS ECONOMY: WEEDS IN THE ROSE GARDEN? — GUEST OPINION (Daily Astorian)

Have you heard? Everything is coming up roses in Oregon.

How appropriate considering it is Rose Festival time of year.

All good news according to the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis. The roses: a 4.5 percent unemployment rate, 5,000 jobs added per month for the past two years, gains in wages and personal income, general fund revenue growth, and increased lottery sales.

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MENTAL HEALTH AGENCY TURNS TO VETERAN (Daily Astorian)

Clatsop Behavioral Healthcare has turned to an experienced administrator to steer the mental health agency out of a leadership crisis.

Amy Baker, the director of prevention and trauma informed systems at Greater Oregon Behavioral Health Inc., will serve as interim executive director while the mental health agency searches for a new director.

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WAH CHANG’S COLD WAR CASUALTIES (Albany Democrat Herald)

The ATI metals refinery in Millersburg  still widely known by its former name, Wah Chang  plays a crucial role in the U.S. nuclear energy industry, producing highly purified zirconium to contain the radioactive uranium that powers many of the nations civilian nuclear reactors as well as those that drive the Navys nuclear submarines and aircraft carriers.

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THINK TOO MUCH: COUNTY STUDY HIGHLIGHTS SIMILARITIES — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

We sometimes talk in the mid-valley as if Benton and Linn counties exist in different universes: To the east, we have beer-drinking, four-wheeling, red-meat-eating Linn County. To the west, we have wine-sipping, bicycle-loving, plastic-bag-hating Benton County, and never the twain should meet.

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WORKERS RAISE FAIRNESS ISSUES (Corvallis Gazette-Times)

Castner Kilgore, Steve Miller, Cliff Albee and Curtis Leibrant have two things in common.

They all worked at the Wah Chang metals refinery in Millersburg during a time when there was radiation on-site from the company’s connection with a government nuclear weapons contractor, and they all developed cancer.

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AFTER THE FIRE (Baker City Herald)

-Revisiting The 2015 Cornet/Windy Ridge Fire-

As wildfire season begins early in the region, one Baker County forestland owner gave a group of about 90 people an account of how last Augusts Cornet/Windy Ridge Fire has affected her property.

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A CALL FOR SAFER TRAINS — OPINION (Baker City Herald)

The fire that resulted from the June 3 derailment of a Union Pacific train carrying crude oil through the Columbia Gorge vividly reminded us of the inherent danger of transporting hazardous cargo.

Baker City has been a railroad town since 1884, so this is hardly a new issue hereabouts.

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WHAT HAPPENED TO RAY? (The Dalles Chronicle)

Ray, a 1,300-pound male California sea lion, was a well-known fixture at The Dalles Marina, where he took up residence on a tenants dock in 2011. For years, he was a highly visible member of the river community, hauling himself out on a marina dock each day and feasting on salmon migrating through the river.

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TROY RESIDENTS LIVE IN WAKE OF GRIZZLY BEAR COMPLEX FIRE (LaGrande Observer)

-The Grizzly Bear Complex Fire last year scorched more than 80,000 acres of timber and forage, plus two homes and dozens of outbuildings. Now, local landowners and fire managers are gearing up for what could be another active fire season.-

Fire season started a couple weeks earlier than usual last year when hot temperatures and dry humidity, coupled with lightning-started fires, in Northeastern Oregon. This year, however, late-spring storms drenched the region to quell an immediate large fire danger.

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COUNTY SITS COMFORTABLY IN AUDIT REPORT (LaGrande Observer)

-Secretary of State department releases report for all 36 counties-

The Oregon Secretary of States office recently released a statewide audit report of Oregons counties, and Union County fared well for the third time in a row.

Not a lot has actually changed in Union County during the last four years since the first audit report was published.

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MY VOICE: TREAT WILDFIRES LIKE NATURAL DISASTERS — GUEST OPINION (LaGrande Observer)

Wildfire season has become a misnomer.

In the past, warm spring weather touched off the start of the worst wildfires. Now, unfortunately one fire season essentially runs into the next.

Summer is just starting and states already are reporting what the National Interagency Fire Center calls large fires. More than a million acres have already burned this year  weeks before summer drought has even had a chance to wreak its perennial havoc.

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OUR VIEW: BROWN NOT WALKING THE WALK — OPINION (LaGrande Observer)

A recent story in this newspaper regarding lengthy delays by Oregon Gov. Kate Browns office to requests for her public calendar is a troubling reminder that a gulf often exists between political rhetoric and reality.

At first glance, there is always the risk of creating a fire where there is barely any smoke. After all, some may ask, what is the big deal about the governors calendar?

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ANOTHER VOICE: LEADERSHIP NEEDED IN DEALING WITH THREATS FROM OIL TRAINS IN THE GORGE — GUEST OPINION (Hood River News)

The Mosier train derailment on June 3 was a terrible accident. But from the accident, we have learned many valuable things. As the members of the Oregon House who represent the Gorge region in Salem, it was especially instructive for us to be able to witness first-hand how legislation passed in the 2015 session impacted the reaction to events that occurred that weekend.

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CURRY NEEDS TO SLASH MORE FROM BUDGET (The Curry Coastal Pilot)

Curry County’s financial status, its paucity of general fund monies and its imminent need to slash more has been noted by state officials.

The Oregon Secretary of State office warned state officials in its biannual audit that four counties, including Curry County, face extreme economic hardships and the state might have to act.

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U.S. SENATE BILL AIMS TO EASE BANKING FOR MARIJUANA COMPANIES (Douglas County News-Review)

Officials are making another effort at easing the business relationship between marijuana shops and banks.

A spending bill that was approved by a U.S. Senate committee on Thursday has language included that would prevent federal money from being used to penalize financial institutions for doing business with marijuana enterprises in states where its legal to do so.

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FEDERAL SPENDING BILL TOUTED AS ‘WIN FOR RURAL OREGON’ (Douglas County News-Review)

-Wildfire prevention, Klamath Basin could get money-

Wildfire prevention, habitat improvements for the sage grouse and the Klamath Basin could receive federal dollars as part of a proposed spending bill in the U.S. Senate.

Oregon Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden announced Thursday the programs were among a handful that will get millions from the Interior Appropriations bill, a move they tout to create jobs, protect wildlife and improve the environment.

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JAMES NASH NAMED TO OREGON RECREATION TASK FORCE (Wallowa.com)

The task force set up to reconnect Oregonians with nature now has an Eastern Oregonian on the committee said Scott Jorgensen, legislative aide to Sen. Doug Whitsett of Klamath Falls, a member of the task force.

The task force, set up by the Governor was originally a 16-member group with no Eastern Oregon representative as reported in the Chieftain on March 29. As reported at the time, the task force recognized the lack of an appropriate representative from Eastern Oregon and a correction was intended. That correction has been made.

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OREGON INSURANCE REGULATORS AGREE RATES NEED TO RISE NEXT YEAR — BLOG (Oregon Business Journal)

For the most part, Oregon insurance regulators agree with how much health insurance companies want to hike rates in the individual market next year, according to preliminary rate decisions out today.

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MODA JUST ABOUT READY TO COME OUT FROM EXTRA STATE SUPERVISION — BLOG (Oregon Business Journal)

More than four months after Moda Health agreed to raise sufficient capital and remain in business, state insurance regulators are poised to lift the consent order.

Patrick Allen, director of the Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services, said he anticipates lifting the order next week.

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OREGON: STOP SENDING OIL BY RAIL (CNN)

-Oregon wants to hit the brakes on trains carrying dangerous crude oil through its state.-

Earlier this month a Union Pacific UNP train transporting North Dakota crude derailed and burst into flames along Oregon’s picturesque Columbia River gorge. Although there were no injuries, the incident caused oil to spill into the river and the fire forced residents of Mosier, Oregon to evacuate their homes for days.

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CALI APPROVES SKY-HIGH RATE INCREASES FOR INDIVIDUAL HEALTH PLANS (The Lund Report)

State insurance regulators largely approved the high rate increases for individual health plans for 2017, accepting the insurers argument that they were needed to stop the losses felt since the launch of the Affordable Care Act. Meanwhile, Moda Health will be offering health plans in most of the counties after all, ensuring rural consumers have adequate competition. The state believes the troubled company is now doing well enough and should have its probation lifted soon.

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PUBLIC HEALTH TO SEEK $30 MILLION FOR MODERNIZATION IN 2017-2019 BIENNIUM (The Lund Report)

-An unprecedented assessment of where Oregon’s public health system is now and where it hopes to be to support a truly modern system shows an actual gap of $105 million.-

A report due to the Legislature Fiscal Office June 30 will start with a recommendation to fund a $30 million first phase of modernization focused on communicable disease and environmental health programs to combat air toxins and lead in the water. The recommendation will also call for funding infrastructure improvements in capabilities connected to health equity, access to population health data and planning.

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Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on June 20, 2016 eClips Weekend Edition

June 20, 2016 OSL eClips

* EPA should ensure that mining companies pay for cleanup — Guest Opinion
* A message given to Salem refugees: you are welcome here
* Oregon DA is gunning for justice in review of convictions
* Why Oregon’s Owyhee deserves protection — Guest Opinion
* Teachers, students give an “A” to full-day kindergarten
* Marijuana growers, processors face numerous and complex rules
* Resolving aerial conflicts — Opinion
* More Gun Control In Oregon?
* Employers say its hard to find good workers
* Speaker urges finding economic opportunities in ag, bicycle niches
* Oregon bottle deposit likely to double in 2017
* Editorial: Carbon choices are climate choices — Opinion
* Editorial: Governor ducks out of first debate — Opinion
* Editorial: Minimum-wage boost to cost jobs — Opinion
* Governor Kate Brown’s message to Oregonians for Pride week, following shooting
* Can Hemp, Long Overshadowed by Marijuana, Rise as an Industry?

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EPA SHOULD ENSURE THAT MINING COMPANIES PAY FOR CLEANUP — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)

We don’t often include metals on Oregon’s long list of natural resources. Other Western states have a more extensive history of mining, but Oregon is still home to its share of abandoned mines.

One of them, the Formosa Mine in Douglas County, is as bad as they get: a Superfund site that has been slowly poisoning nearby Middle Creek for nearly two decades. The Canadian company that ran it, Formosa Exploration, Inc., has walked away, leaving taxpayers to clean it up  an unfunded mandate, since there is no funding for it.

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A MESSAGE GIVEN TO SALEM REFUGEES: YOU ARE WELCOME HERE (Salem Statesman Journal)

There weren’t enough chairs to hold the dozens of people who gathered at the Peace Plaza in Salem on Sunday afternoon to welcome the about 60 refugees resettling in the area this year.

The Salem chapter of the United Nations Association and partnering groups welcomed refugees from counties such as Cuba, Burma, Bhutan, Iran, Iraq, and Somalia to the Salem-Keizer area and celebrated the local Refugee Resettlement Program at the event.

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OREGON DA IS GUNNING FOR JUSTICE IN REVIEW OF CONVICTIONS (Salem Statesman Journal)

At first, authorities in Oregon believed the lab tech had been stealing drugs from just one batch of evidence. Then they saw drugs were missing from other cases she had worked. And then they finally concluded she had also stolen evidence from ones she had not worked on.

The number of possibly contaminated convictions grew, from one to now around 1,500 in central Oregon’s Deschutes County alone.

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WHY OREGON’S OWYHEE DESERVES PROTECTION — GUEST OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)

As a third-generation Malheur County resident, I was raised with a view of the Owyhee Canyonlands from my bedroom window.

Recently I traveled hundreds of miles to Salem  along with over 150 other sportsmen, veterans, parents, small business owners and citizens from every corner of Oregon  to tell the House Committee on Rural Communities and our other elected officials why permanently protecting Oregon’s Owyhee Canyonlands is vital to our state’s incredible natural heritage, way of life and economy.

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TEACHERS, STUDENTS GIVE AN “A” TO FULL-DAY KINDERGARTEN (Eugene Register-Guard)

Young students across the state have now completed their first year in full-day kindergarten classes and they, along with their teachers and administrators, are likely rejoicing as they ease into a nearly three-month break from school, schedules and homework.

But according to at least two kindergarten teachers in the Eugene School District, the long break isn’t the only thing to be excited about.

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MARIJUANA GROWERS, PROCESSORS FACE NUMEROUS AND COMPLEX RULES (Eugene Register-Guard)

As recreational marijuana cultivation emerges from decades in the shadows in Oregon, residents face a vexing challenge: Where will new licensed farms, processing plants and retailers be allowed to locate?

Banned outright in big chunks of the state, recreational marijuana facilities face a complicated patchwork of quickly drafted local land-use laws in areas, such as Lane County, that are allowing them.

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RESOLVING AERIAL CONFLICTS — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)

A Redmond woman’s dispute with a neighbor has raised some interesting questions about regulation of drones.

Fawn Curry is unhappy because, she says, her neighbor is using his drone to spy on her and her family in their home and she’s concerned about their safety. She says she asked him to stop, but he ignored her.

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MORE GUN CONTROL IN OREGON? (Oregon Public Broadcasting)

-OPB’s Think Out Loud is on air from Noon – 1:00PM today-

We talk with Oregon House Majority Leader Jennifer Williamson and State Sen. Jeff Kruse about what measures can or should be taken to restrict access to the kinds of weapons used in the Orlando massacre and other mass shootings.

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EMPLOYERS SAY ITS HARD TO FIND GOOD WORKERS (Argus Observer)

Bringing companies to Malheur County to provide more jobs has been a longtime economic development goal, but county economic development director Greg Smith has found that employers have trouble getting the workers they need.

More than 150 jobs in the Ontario area  including on the Idaho side of the state line  are waiting to be filled, according to postings on the Oregon Department of Employment website.

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SPEAKER URGES FINDING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES IN AG, BICYCLE NICHES (Argus Observer)

Getting ready for tourism was the theme of a presentation Friday on developing eastern Oregon tourism to help build the industry and communities in the region.

The presentation by Alice Trindle, executive director of the Eastern Oregon Visitors Association, was one of several breakout sessions during the Embracing Our Treasure conference hosted by Rural Development Initiatives and Four Rivers Healthy Community in Ontario.

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OREGON BOTTLE DEPOSIT LIKELY TO DOUBLE IN 2017 (Herald and News)

A hike in bottle deposits is likely in 2017 as Oregon commissioners consider a House bill passed in 2011 that called for deposits to double if the redemption rate had dipped below 80 percent for two consecutive years.

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EDITORIAL: CARBON CHOICES ARE CLIMATE CHOICES — OPINION (Daily Astorian)

While many economists and energy regulators remain convinced that the best approach to controlling greenhouse gases is to tax carbon emissions, it nevertheless is good to see that Oregon is continuing to closely examine an alternative approach: an economy-wide carbon cap-and-trade system in partnership with other governments around North America.

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EDITORIAL: GOVERNOR DUCKS OUT OF FIRST DEBATE — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)

Although it seems unlikely to make much if any difference in the election, Gov. Kate Brown has blown off an invitation to appear at the debate that traditionally serves as the kickoff to the fall campaign.

The debate was scheduled for July 22 as part of the Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association summer convention; for the past three decades during election years, gubernatorial candidates have gathered at the convention to hold forth.

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EDITORIAL: MINIMUM-WAGE BOOST TO COST JOBS — OPINION (Corvallis Gazette-Times)

The states most recent economic and revenue forecast, issued earlier this month, was remarkably sunny: Oregon continues to see full-throttle rates of growth,” the forecast noted. “The states economy is quickly approaching full employment, or a healthy labor market. Such a milestone has not been seen since 2000.

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GOVERNOR KATE BROWN’S MESSAGE TO OREGONIANS FOR PRIDE WEEK, FOLLOWING SHOOTING (KVAL)

Escorted by police, members of the LGBT community marched along Southwest Portland’s waterfront early Saturday evening. The added police presence acted as a reminder of the tragic attack in Orlando just one week ago.

Some slinging the pride flag or holding hands, marchers say their visibility during this week’s pride events is perhaps more important than ever before. It’s a sentiment Oregon Governor Kate Brown shares too.

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CAN HEMP, LONG OVERSHADOWED BY MARIJUANA, RISE AS AN INDUSTRY? (Newsweek)

Cliff Thomason left the real estate business last year to become something of a pioneer: a hemp farmer.

The Grants Pass, Oregon, man was the first in the state to legally grow hemp, after Oregon began licensing growers in 2014, joining 17 other states nationwide that have differentiated hemp from marijuana and set up separate regulatory systems for growing it.

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