State Library eClips
* Lawmakers want action on Oregon’s rampant chronic absenteeism
* Manhattan crane collapse: Oregon regulators often lean on construction crews to monitor crane safety
* Report: More Oregonians finishing community college while non-residents boost universities
* Former Oregon DHS worker gets 2 years in prison, must repay $130K for welfare benefits theft
* Portland pollution hotspot ID’ed five months before regulators acted
* Lawsuit claims real-estate agent tricked woman, 82, into signing off on home sale
* Moda’s precipitous financial decline set stage for state supervision
* Do Oregonians really want housing that’s affordable? — Guest Opinion
* Housing crisis: Renter protection bill drops relocation costs, retaliation change
* Minimum wage plan clears first legislative hurdle
* PERS early retirement as second-career launching pad — Opinion
* Portland Public Schools tests air quality in Cleveland High, four other SE Portland schools
* 12 key questions and answers about Portland’s air pollution hotspot
* Militia group backs down, billboards go up in support of law enforcement as fifth week of Oregon standoff comes to an end
* Keeping the Delta nonstop to Tokyo matters to Oregon’s economy — Opinion
* Steve Duin: The alarm over air toxins in southeast Portland
* Oregon may again crack down on predatory towing
* Missing in action at the Oregon Capitol — Opinion
* Editorial board: Gov. Kate Brown — Guest Opinion
* Oregon gas prices dip below $2
* Judge orders US agency to pay Yakama Nation for cleanup
* What happened Friday in the Oregon Legislature
* Mohawk High School reaches out to Grande Ronde tribes in hopes of keeping Indians mascot
* Oregon lawmakers hear details of tax increase that could help pay for 2021 Eugene track and field event
* Urban condescension amplifies rural protest — Guest Opinion
* Motor voter gets rolling — Opinion
* Large-scale subsidy for solar power advances in Legislature
* Portland wants Legislature to allow inclusionary zoning, but progressive economist says it won’t help with housing crisis
* Audit will dig into energy department record keeping
* County Chair, DA ask Oregon Department of Justice to investigate Sheriff
* Ban on local GMO ordinances challenged in Legislature
* No funding for the future
* Little China world
* Study shows Portland jobs outpacing national trend
* Senators weigh in on retirement savings
* Historic facelift
* Lawsuits over spotted frog worry farmers
* Oregon works through Medicaid application backlog
* Oregon lawmakers piecing together affordable housing plan
* Paulina Lake lodge sues ODFW over flooding
* Social media, online news key in refuge cases
* Few minimum wage jobs in Deschutes County
* Editorial: The delinquents of the Oregon Secretary of State — Opinion
* Editorial: Start pedaling for the Crooked bikeway — Opinion
* Editorial: Another bad turn by the Legislature — Opinion
* NW Tribes Seek To Restore Columbia River Salmon Runs
* Occupiers Not Listed In Indictment Could Face Charges
* Portland Heavy Metals Emissions Linked To Glass Facility
* Could The New Klamath Dam Removal Plan Kick-Start The Stalled Water Deals?
* Dams, Caucuses And Harassment: The Week’s Top Political Developments
* Finicum Funeral, News Roundtable & Earthquake Warning
* Motor Voter Law Brings Ballots To Thousands More Oregonians
* Oregon bill would increase scrutiny of wetland conversions
* Its time for Western politicians to speak up — Opinion
* Poverty Promoters taking over rural West — Guest Opinion
* Three-tier wage plan set for Senate vote
* House signals support of subsidy for large solar projects
* Hermiston second-fastest growing district in the state
* Thompson: Renewable energy has benefited Eastern Oregon — Guest Opinion
* Plan aims to end fire borrowing
* State line can complicate mental health patients treatment options
* Board president weighs in on squaw debate
* Records must be up to date this month
* Fisher queen: Cricket helps biologists understand impacts of logging on habitat
* Crater Lake eyes plan for plant invaders
* Explosive extract
* Our View: Coal phase-out bill gives lawmakers a choice — Opinion
* Columnist for a Day: Living on shaky ground — Guest Opinion
* Explaining graduation rates
* Klamath Chamber, businesses concerned by wage hike
* Gas odor came from one of two local firms
* Bentz chooses the wrong target — Guest Opinion
* Predator control protects livestock, curb diseases — Guest Opinion
* Bastendorff family gets ODOT’s attention over flood damage
* A message lost amid tragic drama — Opinion
* A look at restoring wild salmon runs on the Columbia River
* Elder abuse: It could be your mom, dad, friend
* Most county high schools see growth in graduates
* Oregon wants its marijuana tax now
* Corps to alter Foster Reservoir fill to conduct fish studies
* Editorial: Legislature should lend a hand to locked-out workers — Opinion
* More buyers, but few houses for sale
* Senate committee OKs modified minimum wage bill
* Drifting Away From Drought
* Editorial: Legislature needs to slow down — Opinion
* High Schools see rise in overall graduation rates
* OUR VIEW: Lawmakers should back proposal, Education is the best investment — Opinion
* Polallie Cooper thinning project draws passion from groups
* MAILS and Marijuana: Legislators right to work to stamp out a bad, old regulation — Opinion
* Douglas County grads share why they came back to live, work
* Timber Report: Wood products business off to a slow start in 2016
* The Oregon Department of Justice Agrees to Investigate Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Staton
* “Should I Get Tested for Arsenic or Cadmium?”A Doctor Responds — Blog
* State orders halt to sale of pesticide used on cannabis plants
* New report says the West Coast could cut its oil use in half by 2030
* Who’s to blame for Portland’s soaring home prices?
* Oregon refuge takeover sheds light on hard times for rural economy
* On the Klamath, a surprising win for river advocates
* Stopping the Cycle: Medical Teams Target Adverse Childhood Experiences — Guest Opinion
* Buehler Wants to Let Pharmacists Directly Prescribe Anti-Overdose Drug
* Keny-Guyer and Stark Renew Push for General Assistance for Homeless
* CCOs Divided Over Certainty For Getting New Contracts
* Unemployment numbers declining across the country, including Oregon
LAWMAKERS WANT ACTION ON OREGON’S RAMPANT CHRONIC ABSENTEEISM (Portland Oregonian)
Oregon needs a comprehensive plan to reduce the state’s high rate of chronic absenteeism, lawmakers on the House Education Committee decided this week.
One person was killed in lower Manhattan Friday morning and three more wounded when a construction crane collapsed into nearby buildings and parked vehicles.
Out-of-state residents accounted for nearly one-third of the degrees and certificates awarded at Oregon’s seven public universities during the 2014-15 school year, according to new figures released by a state agency Friday.
A former Oregon Department of Human Services employee must repay the agency more than $130,000 and serve one year and nine months in prison for stealing thousands of dollars in welfare benefits over a five-year span.
PORTLAND POLLUTION HOTSPOT ID’ED FIVE MONTHS BEFORE REGULATORS ACTED (Portland Oregonian)
The U.S. Forest Service researchers had a plan: Collect moss from trees around Portland, study whether it was a living air pollution indicator, then publish their results in a scientific journal.
But after completing their analysis of moss samples from nearly 350 spots citywide, they found something alarming so alarming they felt compelled to notify environmental regulators right away.
LAWSUIT CLAIMS REAL-ESTATE AGENT TRICKED WOMAN, 82, INTO SIGNING OFF ON HOME SALE (Portland Oregonian)
An 82-year-old woman has filed a lawsuit asking a jury to block the sale of her beloved Northeast Portland house, claiming a real-estate agent tricked her into signing papers to sell her home in one of the city’s hippest neighborhoods.
MODA’S PRECIPITOUS FINANCIAL DECLINE SET STAGE FOR STATE SUPERVISION (Portland Oregonian)
Portland insurer Moda Health Plans, beset with tens of thousands of sick, expensive customers, ate through at least $100 million in capital reserves in 2015.
By year’s end, the state’s third-largest insurer had just $21 million in capital, far below what regulators considered acceptable, setting the stage for the state’s bombshell “supervision” order that gives regulators final say over all major financial decisions at Moda.
DO OREGONIANS REALLY WANT HOUSING THAT’S AFFORDABLE? — GUEST OPINION (Portland Oregonian)
House Speaker Tina Kotek had the attention of 1,300 elected and business leaders during December’s Oregon Leadership Summit. She could have marched through any number of pressing issues from high school dropout rates to minimum wages to pension legacies.
HOUSING CRISIS: RENTER PROTECTION BILL DROPS RELOCATION COSTS, RETALIATION CHANGE (Portland Oregonian)
Oregon lawmakers are whittling down relief proposals aimed at tenants struggling with rising rents amid the state’s escalating housing crisis keeping 90-day notices for rent increases and evictions but dropping plans to make landlords pay relocation costs.
MINIMUM WAGE PLAN CLEARS FIRST LEGISLATIVE HURDLE (Portland Oregonian)
Senate Democrats’ minimum wage plan cleared its first legislative hurdle Friday when a committee swiftly sent it to the floor for a vote of the full chamber.
PERS EARLY RETIREMENT AS SECOND-CAREER LAUNCHING PAD — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)
Rep. Brian Clem, D-Salem, testified Monday in support of a bill that would treat more than 2,000 workers at Oregon State Hospital like police officers for pension purposes, which means they’d be able to retire several years early and collect enhanced PERS payments.
After Wednesday’s surprise announcement that unsafe levels of cadmium and arsenic were circulating in the air of inner Southeast Portland, Portland Public Schools ran air quality tests all day Friday in five of its schools to test for contaminants.
12 KEY QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS ABOUT PORTLAND’S AIR POLLUTION HOTSPOT (Portland Oregonian)
State environmental regulators said this week they believe a SE Portland glass manufacturer was responsible for unsafe levels of cadmium and arsenic found in air testing nearby. The company has since announced it voluntarily suspended use of the metals.
Negotiations with the last four occupiers of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge in southeast Oregon continued Friday as a militia’s weekend plan to escort them out was canceled.
KEEPING THE DELTA NONSTOP TO TOKYO MATTERS TO OREGON’S ECONOMY — OPINION (Portland Oregonian)
The Oregon economy could experience light turbulence this year as Japan decides new access levels at its Tokyo airports and Delta, the only airline to offer a nonstop flight from Portland to Tokyo, threatens to pull out altogether.
STEVE DUIN: THE ALARM OVER AIR TOXINS IN SOUTHEAST PORTLAND (Portland Oregonian)
When inventive U.S. Forest Service researchers discovered frightening concentrations of arsenic and cadmium in moss samples from two Portland neighborhoods last May, they wasted no time alerting the state Department of Environmental Quality
OREGON MAY AGAIN CRACK DOWN ON PREDATORY TOWING (Salem Statesman Journal)
The Oregon Legislature will again consider cracking down on private property impound tows, also known as patrol towing or the more inflammatory predatory towing.
MISSING IN ACTION AT THE OREGON CAPITOL — OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)
Shame on the Republicans in the Oregon Legislature.
Even more shame on the Democrats, the majority party in the Legislature.
And perhaps the most shame lies with the rest of us Oregonians for letting the 2016 Legislature get away with a week of shenanigans.
EDITORIAL BOARD: GOV. KATE BROWN — GUEST OPINION (Salem Statesman Journal)
Governor Kate Brown meets with the editorial board Feb 4.
OREGON GAS PRICES DIP BELOW $2 (Salem Statesman Journal)
Oregon drivers can expect to see an unfamiliar price at the gas pump this month for the first time almost in seven years, the statewide average cost of a gallon of gas dipped below $2.
JUDGE ORDERS US AGENCY TO PAY YAKAMA NATION FOR CLEANUP (Salem Statesman Journal)
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been ordered to pay the Yakama Nation for costs related to cleaning up a contaminated island in Washington’s Columbia River.
The Yakama Nation sued the Corps in 2014, arguing that tribal members weren’t compensated for helping plan the cleanup of Bradford Island, reported The Yakima Herald.
WHAT HAPPENED FRIDAY IN THE OREGON LEGISLATURE (Salem Statesman Journal)
Oregon’s short legislative session began Feb. 1. Here is a review of what happened Friday and is scheduled for Monday.
MOHAWK HIGH SCHOOL REACHES OUT TO GRANDE RONDE TRIBES IN HOPES OF KEEPING INDIANS MASCOT (Eugene Register-Guard)
Officials at one Lane County high school are optimistic a recent change in state rules may let them keep the schools long-held Native American mascot name and image after all.
A proposal to double the states lodging tax drew praise from the hotel industry and some pointed questions from lawmakers at an initial public hearing Friday.
URBAN CONDESCENSION AMPLIFIES RURAL PROTEST — GUEST OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)
The land, including all the natural sources of wealth, is the heritage of the people, and should not be monopolized for speculative purposes, and alien ownership of the land should be prohibited.
MOTOR VOTER GETS ROLLING — OPINION (Eugene Register-Guard)
Although its still early, data for the first few weeks of the states motor voter program are showing its having an effect.
LARGE-SCALE SUBSIDY FOR SOLAR POWER ADVANCES IN LEGISLATURE (Portland Tribune)
House lawmakers from both sides of the aisle signaled their support this week for a bill that would encourage large solar projects in Oregon.
The House Committee On Energy and Environment voted unanimously on Thursday to send the bill to the budget writing Joint Committee on Ways and Means.
House Bill 4037 would create a state subsidy of half a cent per kilowatt hour of energy generated from qualified projects. The subsidy would last five years.
Portland city officials and affordable housing advocates are mounting another push to get the Legislature to allow inclusionary zoning in Oregon. That would enable Portland and other cities to require developers to build some affordable units when they build larger apartment complexes.
But on the eve of a pivotal committee vote in Salem, an influential economist is questioning whether such inclusionary zoning is worthwhile.
AUDIT WILL DIG INTO ENERGY DEPARTMENT RECORD KEEPING (Portland Tribune)
The Oregon Secretary of States office plans to investigate whether poor record keeping at the state Department of Energy could have hidden fraud in the controversial business energy tax credit program.
COUNTY CHAIR, DA ASK OREGON DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE TO INVESTIGATE SHERIFF (Portland Tribune)
A letter from Multnomah County Chair Deborah Kafoury and District Attorney Rod Underhill asks the Oregon Department of Justice to review several accusations against county Sheriff Dan Staton.
BAN ON LOCAL GMO ORDINANCES CHALLENGED IN LEGISLATURE (Portland Tribune)
Farmers overwhelmingly testified against a recent proposal before Oregon lawmakers that would reverse the states ability to pre-empt local government restrictions on seeds.
NO FUNDING FOR THE FUTURE (Portland Tribune)
-Lack of transportation projects becomes real cost for businesses-
In the last two years, Portland freight company Jet Expedited Transport has been forced to add 45 minutes to its scheduled Portland routes.
LITTLE CHINA WORLD (Portland Tribune)
-Oregonians are being encouraged to do business with China, despite the short term slowdown in their economy-
It was a tumultuous end to 2015 with the stock market and the GDP coming out lower than expectations, said Kellie Holloway, Senior International Trade Specialist with the U.S. Commercial Service.
STUDY SHOWS PORTLAND JOBS OUTPACING NATIONAL TREND (Portland Tribune)
The Portland area just missed the top 10 U.S. cities for actual job growth compared to expected job creation. In a study just released by recruiting software company CareerBuilder and subsidiary Economic Modeling Specialists International, Portland ranks 12th among the 150 metropolitan areas included.
SENATORS WEIGH IN ON RETIREMENT SAVINGS (Portland Tribune)
Merkley proposes national plan similar to federal account; Wyden backs tax-law changes.
Oregons U.S. senators are weighing in on private-sector workers lack of savings for retirement and access to plans at their workplace.
HISTORIC FACELIFT (Portland Tribune)
Towering above the Oregon Historical Society are massive tromp loeil paintings depicting scenes from the states past.
LAWSUITS OVER SPOTTED FROG WORRY FARMERS (Bend Bulletin)
-Jefferson County growers fear the loss of irrigation water-
The farm fields in Jefferson County are quiet this time of year, the irrigation ditches dry, the crops dormant and the tractors, combines and balers parked in barns until spring.
Even so, farmers are busy calculating their costs for the spring planting season, and this year theyre factoring in a little bit of fear.
OREGON WORKS THROUGH MEDICAID APPLICATION BACKLOG (Bend Bulletin)
-Public launch of website delayed-
The Oregon Health Authority has delayed launching a new public website that promises to give first-time Medicaid applicants instant feedback on eligibility and enroll them.
OREGON LAWMAKERS PIECING TOGETHER AFFORDABLE HOUSING PLAN (Bend Bulletin)
-Bend City Council supports efforts in Salem to remove ban on inclusionary zoning-
State lawmakers are close to agreeing on the pieces to an affordable housing puzzle theyd like to solve this session. Now theyll spending the coming week trying to agree how to put it together.
PAULINA LAKE LODGE SUES ODFW OVER FLOODING (Bend Bulletin)
-Resort owners seek over $150,000 in damages-
The owners of Paulina Lake Lodge have filed a lawsuit against the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, saying a fish screen maintained by the agency triggered destructive flooding in winter 2015.
SOCIAL MEDIA, ONLINE NEWS KEY IN REFUGE CASES (Bend Bulletin)
-With Malheur occupied, FBI investigation focused on Internet-
In building a case against Ammon Bundy and other accused occupiers of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge headquarters, the FBI relied upon social media and news reports.
The headquarters remains occupied so rather than search the compound for evidence, FBI investigators scoured the Internet, according to an affidavit.
FEW MINIMUM WAGE JOBS IN DESCHUTES COUNTY (Bend Bulletin)
Out of Oregons 36 counties, Deschutes County has the fifth-lowest percentage of workers who make the states minimum wage of $9.25 per hour, according to a recent report from the Oregon Employment Department.
While a relatively low percentage of earners making minimum wage would seem to be a positive sign for the countys economy, Regional Economist Damon Runberg said the reality is more complicated.
The Oregon Secretary of States Office has a list that no municipality or local government should be on: The delinquents.
Local governments, special districts and councils of governments are required to file audits or an equivalent to ensure taxpayer money goes where its supposed to go. When they dont file the required paperwork, they go on the delinquent list. But the Secretary of States Office needs to get serious about following up on the delinquents.
EDITORIAL: START PEDALING FOR THE CROOKED BIKEWAY — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)
Crook County is trying to turn some of its natural beauty into a tourist destination. The effort deserves support.
The plan is to get a stretch of Crooked River Highway designated a bikeway. Its the stretch of road out from Prineville along the Crooked River to the Prineville Reservoir. Its a beautiful twisty road with views of the river and its canyon. Its a nice place for a bike ride.
EDITORIAL: ANOTHER BAD TURN BY THE LEGISLATURE — OPINION (Bend Bulletin)
The new bad legislative proposal for the states minimum wage looks like an old bad proposal.
Gov. Kate Brown proposed a two-tiered minimum wage for Oregon. She wanted a $13.50 state minimum wage by 2022 and a $15.52 wage for Portland. She has proposed a compromise to bring those down a bit.
NW TRIBES SEEK TO RESTORE COLUMBIA RIVER SALMON RUNS (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
Some Northwest Indian tribes in the next 20 years want to achieve a long-held dream: restoring wild salmon runs above the giant Grand Coulee Dam.
The construction of Grand Coulee in the 1930s blocked salmon runs that historically ran into the millions of fish each year, killing what had been a way of life for Indian tribes in the region.
OCCUPIERS NOT LISTED IN INDICTMENT COULD FACE CHARGES (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
A federal indictment released Thursday charges with conspiracy sixteen people involved with the occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. But it doesnt include dozens of people who were also part of the occupation. Many of them have scattered across the U.S., changed phone numbers or gone silent on social media.
PORTLAND HEAVY METALS EMISSIONS LINKED TO GLASS FACILITY (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
A glass facility in Southeast Portland has suspended the use of cadmium and arsenic in its operations after testing found unhealthy levels of those metals in the air nearby.
On Wednesday, state health and environmental officials warned of unhealthy levels of both metals detected in the air around SE 22nd and SE Powell Boulevard in Portland.
COULD THE NEW KLAMATH DAM REMOVAL PLAN KICK-START THE STALLED WATER DEALS? (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
In December, Congress adjourned without passing legislation to ratify a trio of agreements meant to end the long-standing water wars in the Klamath Basin. This essentially killed the deal, which was arrived at through years of painstaking negotiations between farmers, ranchers, tribes and other groups.
DAMS, CAUCUSES AND HARASSMENT: THE WEEK’S TOP POLITICAL DEVELOPMENTS (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
The week in politics was dominated by reports from the Iowa caucuses, the first step in selecting delegates to the major party conventions. New Hampshire will hold a primary next Tuesday.
FINICUM FUNERAL, NEWS ROUNDTABLE & EARTHQUAKE WARNING (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
Doug Badger, Mariann Hyland, and Jeff Mapes muse over some of the big stories of the week.
John Vidale, Network Director at the Pacific Northwest Seismic Network, tells us about a system that will send an early alert in the event of a Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake.
MOTOR VOTER LAW BRINGS BALLOTS TO THOUSANDS MORE OREGONIANS (Oregon Public Broadcasting)
Oregons motor voter law is registering new voters at eight times the old rate, according to data released Thursday. This years new law automatically registers Oregonians as voters when they obtain or renew a drivers license.
Oregon Secretary of State Jeanne Atkins says the state added more than 4,300 people to the voter rolls in the laws first week. She says previously, Oregon added about 2,000 a month.
OREGON BILL WOULD INCREASE SCRUTINY OF WETLAND CONVERSIONS (Capital Press)
-Wetland conversions of farms would be subject to local government approval under a proposed bill in Oregon.-
Oregon farms shouldnt be converted to wetlands unless county governments agree they wont disrupt nearby agricultural operations, according to growers who support a bill before the Legislature.
Wetlands are currently allowed in Oregon farm zones, but Senate Bill 1517 would require local governments to first determine they wont significantly change local farm practices, drive up costs or alter agricultural land use patterns.
ITS TIME FOR WESTERN POLITICIANS TO SPEAK UP — OPINION (Capital Press)
-Western politicians need to protect the rural West from from being turned into a playland for the rich.-
The silence is deafening. In Oregon, Washington and California the governors and most members of the congressional delegations have been silent on the crisis created by the piss-poor management of federal lands in the West.
POVERTY PROMOTERS TAKING OVER RURAL WEST — GUEST OPINION (Capital Press)
-Environmental groups are imposing poverty on the rural West by cutting off economic development.-
The West and the industries that created our communities have been under assault for over 30 years. The federal land that historically made them prosperous has been managed under the influence of environmental and conservation Poverty Promoters for enough years to make no mistake in the results of their agenda poverty.
THREE-TIER WAGE PLAN SET FOR SENATE VOTE (East Oregonian)
-A bill to set a three-tier minimum wage for Oregon goes to the Senate next week.-
A bill to set three different minimum wage rates in the state is headed to the Senate floor next week.
HOUSE SIGNALS SUPPORT OF SUBSIDY FOR LARGE SOLAR PROJECTS (East Oregonian)
-The House Committee On Energy and Environment voted unanimously on Thursday to send the bill to the budget writing Joint Committee on Ways and Means.-
House lawmakers from both sides of the aisle signaled their support this week for a bill that would encourage large solar projects in Oregon.
HERMISTON SECOND-FASTEST GROWING DISTRICT IN THE STATE (East Oregonian)
-Hermiston School District is one of the fastest-growing districts in the state.-
Hermiston School District is the second-fastest growing school district in the state of Oregon, according to a report by the Oregon Department of Education
Oregonians east of the Cascades have long enjoyed a unique way of life that is blessed with wide open places that allow for farming and other business while preserving our natural environment and great outdoors.
This is possible in part due to Oregon leading the way in renewable energy that creates jobs, keeps power bills low, and helps preserve our environment and climate.
PLAN AIMS TO END FIRE BORROWING (Argus Observer)
Two Western senators have proposed a change to federal wildfire funding they say could end a cycle of borrowing to battle catastrophic blazes.
Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, in a meeting at The Argus Observer office Friday, touted a bipartisan amendment he and Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Oregon, presented to the U.S. Senate Tuesday.
STATE LINE CAN COMPLICATE MENTAL HEALTH PATIENTS TREATMENT OPTIONS (Argus Observer)
When it comes to treating people in the middle of a mental health crisis, the goal is the same: getting patients out of crisis. But getting there can become complicated when patients live in a border community like Ontario.
BOARD PRESIDENT WEIGHS IN ON SQUAW DEBATE (Argus Observer)
As president of the Oregon Geographic Names Board, I would like to clarify some points regarding the County Courts recent discussion on replacing names containing the word squaw.
The OGNB is affiliated with the Oregon Historical Society and makes recommendations on Oregon proposals to the U.S. Board on Geographic Names
RECORDS MUST BE UP TO DATE THIS MONTH (Argus Observer)
The Oregon Health Authority is reminding parents to make sure their childrens immunization records are up to date in time for School Exclusion Day Feb. 17.
According to the health authoritys website, children will not be able to attend school or child care starting that day if their records show missing immunizations.
FISHER QUEEN: CRICKET HELPS BIOLOGISTS UNDERSTAND IMPACTS OF LOGGING ON HABITAT (Medford Mail Tribune)
Dave Clayton straddles a live trap with a slim, medieval-like iron cage attached to the end, ready for the five minutes of chaos that both the wildlife biologist and his rare, wild and feisty quarry know all too well together.
Inside is F-03, a Pacific fisher whose unshakable taste for poultry has put her in Clayton’s trap a dozen times since 2011.
CRATER LAKE EYES PLAN FOR PLANT INVADERS (Medford Mail Tribune)
Among the 182,000 visitors who roll through the gates to Crater Lake National Park are a handful of not-so-welcomed bullies that stick around, to Jen Beck’s chagrin.
Klamath weed, bullthistle, spotted napweed and even Canada thistle are some of the invasive plant species that have found their way into the park, often on the boots or bumpers of unwitting park visitors who deposit seeds or spores along roadways.
EXPLOSIVE EXTRACT (Medford Mail Tribune)
Homemade hash oil has gained more notoriety for headline-grabbing explosions than for its soaring popularity among cannabis connoisseurs.
In January alone, three Medford homes caught on fire after gases used in making hash oil exploded, injuring five.
OUR VIEW: COAL PHASE-OUT BILL GIVES LAWMAKERS A CHOICE — OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)
Clean-energy advocates have long argued that coal-fired power plants should be phased out, and public opinion is increasingly on their side. Now a coalition of Oregon’s two largest power companies and environmental groups has settled on a plan to eliminate coal power from the state’s energy grid by 2030 and produce half the state’s electricity from clean, renewable sources by 2040.
COLUMNIST FOR A DAY: LIVING ON SHAKY GROUND — GUEST OPINION (Medford Mail Tribune)
Regarding the coming big one the Cascadia Subduction Zone earthquake we in southwest Oregon have been misled by the news cycle tendency to focus on Portland and the Willamette Valley.
Yes, Western Oregon has a 9.0 or larger earthquake every 500 to 600 years. Yes, the Pacific Northwest had a 9-plus magnitude quake in 1700, so the next great quake is 100 or more years away; but southwest Oregon is 75 years overdue for the next great subduction zone earthquake.
EXPLAINING GRADUATION RATES (Herald and News)
Graduation rates can be confusing.
Local schools, districts and the state measure more than just the group of students who finish with a high school diploma in four years time. They also look at those who took five years and those earning something other than a regular diploma, such as a modified diploma or GED
KLAMATH CHAMBER, BUSINESSES CONCERNED BY WAGE HIKE (Herald and News)
Workers at David’s Brawny Burger in Klamath Falls bustled about at the diner late Friday morning preparing for the lunch rush.
Employees at the small business start out working for the state’s $9.25 minimum wage, said owner David Scrogham, and work up to higher wages as they progress.
GAS ODOR CAME FROM ONE OF TWO LOCAL FIRMS (Herald and News)
The strong propane-like odor that permeated Klamath Falls Thursday afternoon came from one of two local industrial sites, according to the state Department of Environmental Quality and the city fire department.
BENTZ CHOOSES THE WRONG TARGET — GUEST OPINION (Herald and News)
-He uses demagoguery to try to make his point-
As a former resident of eastern Klamath County and current resident of rural western Oregon, Im aware that many rural Oregonians have grievances against federal land management, as Andrew Bentz relates in his commentary.
Those concerns are real and worthy of greater attention and respect in the Eugene-to-Portland corridor of our state. They must not be forgotten in the smoke of conflict around the Malheur Wildlife Refuge occupation.
PREDATOR CONTROL PROTECTS LIVESTOCK, CURB DISEASES — GUEST OPINION (Herald and News)
Historically, the Klamath Countys wildlife specialist position was funded by the Klamath Countys general fund along with some funding from the Oregon Department of Agriculture, Oregon Department of Fish & Wildlife and United States Department of Agriculture.
Prior to 2012, many ranchers, sportsmen and wildlife enthusiasts had been asked to attend the annual Klamath County budget meetings in support for continued wildlife services.
It’s taken 10 years to arrive at a remedy to the problem.
But the culvert-caused flood damage Ken Bastendorff prognosticated would happen to his family’s property has finally gotten the attention of the Oregon Department of Transportation.
A MESSAGE LOST AMID TRAGIC DRAMA — OPINION (The World)
Their venture couldnt have ended much worse.
Ammon Bundy and 10 of his cohorts are now jailed and facing federal indictments following occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge earlier last month. Another of their group is dead, killed by federal agents who say he was going for a gun. No matter what authorities say Robert LaVoy Finicum is now a martyr for the cause.
The hope of restoring wild salmon runs above the giant Grant Coulee Dam would take a step closer to reality if the decision is made to proceed with an initial study on the issue.
Salmon runs on the upper Columbia River and its tributaries were blocked by Grand Coulee Dam, which was built in the 1930s, and by Chief Joseph Dam, which was built downstream in the 1950s. Both were built without fish ladders and killed a 10,000-year-old Native American fishery.
ELDER ABUSE: IT COULD BE YOUR MOM, DAD, FRIEND (Daily Astorian)
-Law enforcement and social service workers face major hurdles with elder abuse cases that are not often seen in other crimes.-
An elderly woman with dementia in a Lake Oswego assisted-living facility had no idea her only living relative, a niece in Seaside, was stealing $350,000 from her.
MOST COUNTY HIGH SCHOOLS SEE GROWTH IN GRADUATES (Daily Astorian)
-Graduation rates showed gains in most districts, but male students struggled, according to a recent state report.-
Astoria High School recorded an 8 percent gain in graduation last year, according to data from the Oregon Department of Education released last week.
OREGON WANTS ITS MARIJUANA TAX NOW (Daily Astorian)
A temporary 25-percent tax is now in effect for all recreational marijuana products sold at medical marijuana dispensaries through December 31, 2016. The tax is applied to the retail price of the recreational products. Dispensaries must list the retail price and total tax separately on customer receipts.
CORPS TO ALTER FOSTER RESERVOIR FILL TO CONDUCT FISH STUDIES (Albany Democrat Herald)
For the third year, Foster Reservoir will refill on a different schedule than in years past to conduct fish passage research.
The corps usually refills the reservoir from Feb. 1 to May 10, but this spring will maintain it at an elevation of 613 feet above sea level through April 15, and then refill to 635 feet about 2 feet below the usual summer elevation by the beginning of May.
EDITORIAL: LEGISLATURE SHOULD LEND A HAND TO LOCKED-OUT WORKERS — OPINION (Albany Democrat Herald)
As weve noted in recent editorials, although partisan squabbling still attracts headlines at the Oregon Legislature, its not at all unusual to see legislators from opposite sides of aisles teaming up to address issues of specific interest to constituents.
The latest example comes courtesy of Albany Rep. Andy Olson, a Republican, and Corvallis Rep. Dan Rayfield, a Democrat. The two are among the chief sponsors of a measure, House Bill 4086, that would extend unemployment benefits for up to an additional six months for workers who have been locked out.
MORE BUYERS, BUT FEW HOUSES FOR SALE (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
Mid-Willamette Valley residents looking to sell their homes soon are in for some great news thanks to a recovering economy, plenty of potential buyers, low interest rates and limited inventory, according to real estate experts.
SENATE COMMITTEE OKS MODIFIED MINIMUM WAGE BILL (Corvallis Gazette-Times)
On a 3-2 vote Friday afternoon, the Senate Committee on Workforce and General Government approved a three-tiered minimum wage proposal that will now go to the Senate floor.
Gov. Kate Brown had requested the Legislature approve a minimum wage of $13.50 per hour for areas outside of Portland and $15.50 for the Portland metro area.
DRIFTING AWAY FROM DROUGHT (Baker City Herald)
-With Snowpack Above Average, Farmers and Irrigation Officials Optimistic About Water Supply-
Blizzards keep blocking Chris Heffernans driveway.
Hes happy about this.
EDITORIAL: LEGISLATURE NEEDS TO SLOW DOWN — OPINION (The Dalles Chronicle)
This week the Wasco County Commission and Rep. John Huffman, R-The Dalles, rightfully voiced protests about the Oregon Legislature using the 35-day session in 2016 to push through major policy issues that have not been fully vetted.
On Monday, Feb. 1, the first day of session, there were first readings on 105 bills in the Senate and the hearings process on these measures will have to be completed next week. The same scenario is playing out in the House.
HIGH SCHOOLS SEE RISE IN OVERALL GRADUATION RATES (LaGrande Observer)
The quest for perfection is not always elusive. For proof, look no further than Imbler, Joseph, Powder Valley and Wallowa high schools.
The four high schools all had 100 percent graduation rates for 2014-15, according to statistics released by the Oregon Department of Education.
It was called the Servicemens Readjustment Act of 1944 and, arguably, it proved to be one of the wisest educational programs created by lawmakers in the United States.
Informally dubbed the GI Bill, the program was instituted toward the end of World War II and was designed to offer returning veterans a wide range of benefits including tuition and living expense payments for those who attended college.
POLALLIE COOPER THINNING PROJECT DRAWS PASSION FROM GROUPS (Hood River News)
-Forest Service schedules public meeting Wednesday-
The U.S. Forest Service is planning a nearly 3,000-acre forest thinning project on the north slope of Mount Hood, drawing more than a thousand written comments from Oregon environmental advocates and local biking groups.
Great acronym, great move: the Marijuana Advertising in Legal States MAILS Act has made its legislative debut, courtesy of Oregon Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley and their state counterparts, Reps. Earl Blumenauer and Suzanne Bonamici. This week the lawmakers introduced MAILS, a bill that would allow publications in Oregon and other states where marijuana is legal to mail their publications containing written advertising for the product without fear of federal prosecution.
DOUGLAS COUNTY GRADS SHARE WHY THEY CAME BACK TO LIVE, WORK (Douglas County News-Review)
Largely in an attempt to appeal to those averse to moving to rural areas, Roseburg Forest Products decided to move its headquarters to Springfield. However, there are many Douglas County residents who have stayed, who have moved back here or who just plain moved to the county to make a living. They see the area as a great community to live, work and raise children.
TIMBER REPORT: WOOD PRODUCTS BUSINESS OFF TO A SLOW START IN 2016 (Douglas County News-Review)
The wood products business is lackluster. Yet, unsold inventories in Portland reached an 11-year low. This could foreshadow increased housing starts.
A brief explanation of lumber versus log board feet is included. Recent trends of lumber, home construction and housing markets, are compared to 2009 and 2005.
-Agency will act at the request of County Chairwoman Deborah Kafoury and District Attorney Rod Underhill.-
Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum has agreed to investigate Multnomah County Sheriff Dan Staton, according to a letter sent to the state by County Chairwoman Deborah Kafoury.
In a letter today, Kafoury and Multnomah County District Attorney Rod Underhill formally requested that DOJ investigate and noted that Rosenblum had agreed to take on the job.
“SHOULD I GET TESTED FOR ARSENIC OR CADMIUM?”A DOCTOR RESPONDS — BLOG (Portland Mercury)
A lot of people who live, work, or send their children to school near SE Powell and 22nd, where elevated levels of arsenic and cadmium have been found, are rightfully concerned and wonder if they should get themselves and/or their children tested. In Dirk’s post from last night, the Oregon Health Authority didn’t see the urgency of getting tested right away, but many parents and residents would rather feel safe than sorry.
-Taken off shelves; growers asked to stop using Guardian-
The Oregon Department of Agriculture said Friday it has ordered a halt of sale and the removal of the pesticide product Guardian, which is labeled for use on ornamental, food, and feed crops for mite control but also used by cannabis growers.
NEW REPORT SAYS THE WEST COAST COULD CUT ITS OIL USE IN HALF BY 2030 (Christian Science Monitor)
-The report indicates that it won’t take much for the West Coast to reduce its current oil consumption even more.-
When it comes to purchasing and promoting electric cars and clean energy, the West Coast stands apart.
California leads the nation in policies encouraging electric-car adoption, and Washington and Oregon aren’t far behind.
In fact, those three states may be poised to reduce their use of fossil fuels dramatically in coming years.
Everyone wants to move to Portland, Oregon. But the more popular it gets, the less affordable it becomes.
Portland has a lot to offer: Drive 90 minutes west, you’re at the beach. Head the other way, and there’s a snow-capped mountain. It’s got a thriving food and wine scene, a burgeoning tech sector and the weather is temperate.
-It took the seizure of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge by anti-government activists to get national media attention to this ailing corner of Oregon. But the economic story of ailing small towns in the Northwest has nothing to do with Ammon Bundys ideology.-
For native Westerners, coverage by the elite East Coast media of the so-called occupation at an Oregon wildlife refuge has produced a bounty of embarrassments and outrages.
ON THE KLAMATH, A SURPRISING WIN FOR RIVER ADVOCATES (High Country News)
-Dam removals on the Oregon-California border move forward without water deals for irrigators.-
Earlier this week, the Department of the Interior announced that four dams on the Klamath River would come down. The dam removals signal a win for environmentalists, sportsmen, and tribes, but they also come without an accompanying set of water agreements, which Congress failed to enact late last year.
R.J. Gillespie, M.D., and his team are working with parents at The Childrens Clinic to interrupt the cycle of adverse childhood experiences. Health System Transformation HST makes this project possible and makes preventive and lifelong health priorities, by doing things differently and promoting local innovation.
BUEHLER WANTS TO LET PHARMACISTS DIRECTLY PRESCRIBE ANTI-OVERDOSE DRUG (The Lund Report)
-Building on a bill from 2015 that gives pharmacists the ability to dispense birth control without a doctors prescription, HB 4124 allows them to bypass physicians when selling Naloxone, which is used to reverse the effects of an opiate or narcotic overdose, including from heroin and prescription drugs like Vicodin and Oxycontin.-
Rep. Knute Buehler, R-Bend, is promoting a bill that would give pharmacists the ability to quickly dispense a life-saving drug for use in opiate overdoses without the prescription of one of his fellow physicians.
KENY-GUYER AND STARK RENEW PUSH FOR GENERAL ASSISTANCE FOR HOMELESS (The Lund Report)
-A large number of homeless individuals have severe disabilities that make them eligible for federal support, but their conditions can deteriorate as they navigate the bureaucracy. HB 4042 would provide state funding to get these people into housing while the Department of Human Services helps them get approved federally.-
The House Human Services Committee is making a bipartisan push to restore a general assistance program that will put up state funds to provide housing for people who are homeless and disabled while they await federal assistance.
CCOS DIVIDED OVER CERTAINTY FOR GETTING NEW CONTRACTS (The Lund Report)
-Sen. Bates wants to give CCOs greater assurance that the state is making a long-term investment in the organizations. His bill would prevent the Oregon Health Authority from refusing to renew contracts with CCOs that are doing well. But CareOregon argued that the state must not let CCOs coast as they administer the Oregon Health Plan, and guaranteeing a contract removes incentives for good performance.-
Sen. Alan Bates, D-Ashland, unveiled his latest version of a bill that would give clearer guidelines to the Oregon Health Authority as it works out new five-year contracts for the states coordinated care organizations.
According to the Federal Government, unemployment numbers are declining across the country. The Oregon Employment Department said that the number is also low for southern Oregon due to the new businesses coming to the area.
“It has been trending down here as well. We are not as low as the national rate the US rate was estimated at 4.9 percent and that’s the lowest the US has seen since November 2007,” said Guy Tauer, Regional Economist for the Oregon Employment Department.
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