Local News

Locals now hold both major Republican leadership roles in the Oregon Legislature. Prineville Representative Vikki Breese-Iverson is the new caucus leader in the House, replacing Representative Christine Drazan, who stepped down on Tuesday. This comes just after Bend Representative Tim Knopp took over as the Senate’s GOP leader in October.


Deschutes County Health Services is partnering with Oregon Health Authority to offer free drive-thru COVID-19 vaccines for anyone 5 or older at the Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center in Redmond. 


The vaccine clinic will be open Monday through Sunday from noon to 7 p.m. When entering the Deschutes County Fair & Expo Center, take the first left onto Central Oregon Dr. and follow signs for the vaccine clinic.


Pfizer, Pfizer pediatric, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines will be available. Third and booster doses will also be available to eligible individuals. No appointment or insurance is needed.


Booster doses are available for anyone 18 or older who has received a Pfizer or Moderna series at least six months ago or a Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least two months ago. 


Children between the ages of 5 to 14 years old must be accompanied by a parent or guardian. Residents should plan to bring vaccination records to the clinic if they have already received a COVID-19 vaccination. 


To learn more about other vaccination clinics in Deschutes County, please visit www.deschutes.org/covid19vaccine or call (541) 699-5109 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Careless smoking near an oxygen tank is likely the cause of a fire that killed a Prineville woman Saturday night. Crook County Fire and Rescue arrived at a mobile home in the Juniper Canyon neighborhood just before 10 p.m. Two men who lived on the property had already put out the fire with garden hoses, but the woman was still inside. When crews got inside, they discovered the woman deceased in the living room, where she’d reportedly been sleeping. Investigators say the woman had a history of smoking in bed and was on oxygen.

Deschutes County District Attorney John Hummel is not among the finalists for U.S. Attorney for Oregon. Following public input and interviews with the seven applicants, a committee ranked the candidates, including Hummel. Senators Ron Wyden and Jeff Merkley submitted three other names for the President to choose from.



The City of Redmond is looking to fill several vacancies--a City Council seat and a handful of committee positions. Councilor John Bullock resigned and most committee positions turnover annually. Mayor George Endicott tells KBND News City Coucil members act as the policy members and encourages anyone who wants to figure out how local government works and wants to make a time contribution to apply. Mayor Endicott hopes to appoint someone by the end of the calendar year. Redmond residents can download the online application. Anyone interested in the vacant councilor seat needs to submit the paperwork by Monday, November 29th. Whoever is selected will finish the term, which runs through December 31, 2022. Redmond residents interested in committee work need to complete a separate application. For more information, go to https://www.redmondoregon.gov/government/commissions-committees.

Just in time for holiday travel, COCC-Bend now offers a second site for rapid PCR COVID-19 testing. Appointments for the Bend testing site are available Monday-through-Friday from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. and can be made online at cur.tv/bend. However, testing is not available Thursday, 11/25 or Friday, 11/26 due to the Thanksgiving holiday.


The testing clinic is open to anyone ages 5 and up, including those required to test for work, school or travel. There is no cost and no insurance or identification is required. The Bend rapid PCR COVID-19 testing site is located in front of the COCC Coats Campus Center, 2600 NW College Way, Bend, OR 97703. 

Central Oregonians who need quick results from a COVID test can visit a new testing clinic at the Redmond campus of COCC. So far, more than 960 people have taken advantage of the new site … which is a partnership between Central Oregon Community College, Deschutes County Health Services and the OHA. It’s the first public, free rapid-PCR testing site in the state. An appointment is required, but no I-D is required.

Bend Fire credits the sprinkler system with quickly putting out a fire at Pilot Butte Rehabilitation. The blaze started in the laundry room, Sunday afternoon, at the northeast Bend facility. Arriving crews found smoke coming from the laundry room .. but sprinklers kept the fire in check and there was only minimal heat and water damage. The exact cause of the fire is under investigation.

Carelessness may have been to blame for a southeast Bend fire. Crews responded to a home on Rolo Court and found a small fire in the garage. They were able to quickly extinguish the flames, limiting damages to around 15-thousand dollars… but they say it could’ve been much worse. Investigators determined the cause was a wick placed too close to combustibles on a shelf. When someone walked inside, those items caught fire. Luckily, everyone got out safely and quickly called 911.

Shepherd’s House Ministries is in need of turkeys and hams for their annual Thanksgiving Dinner. Because of supply chain challenges, current inventory is low. Drive-through drop-off is available until Monday, November 22nd at the Division Street location of Shepherd’s House in Bend.

St. Charles will temporarily pause COVID-19 drive-through testing starting Friday, November 19, at 2 p.m. through Saturday, November 20. The pause is needed to set up a new winter-friendly tent for patients and caregivers. Those needing pre-procedure COVID-19 tests can still get them at St. Charles Family Care clinics at Bend South, Redmond, Prineville or La Pine.

The City of Bend is celebrating the completion of the Murphy Road Corridor Project and the opening of a new bridge. Project manager Deedee Fraley tells KBND News the new east-west route in southeast Bend crosses the railroad tracks along the future Alpenlow Park. For the first part of the celebration, the Murphy Road Bridge will open exclusively to cyclists and pedestrians from 1 to 2 p.m. A ribbon cutting ceremony follows at 2 p.m. Other Murphy Road improvements include three roundabouts, shared-use bike lanes and sidewalks, 275 new trees, and safe crossings to Caldera High School.


Redmond Mayor George Endicott tells Your Town about the city's population growth, open positions, police, the airport and community development. A lot is happening in the city of 36,000. Redmond PD has a new chief and just added 4 officers. The airport has a new building and 500 new parking spaces. AND... the Pavement Condition Index for Redmond is 83%. That's above the national average. What's the PCI you ask? It's the national indicator of road quality. For details, listen to the entire Your Town interview.

High gas prices aren’t slowing holiday excursions… and travelers should expect busy roads and airports for Thanksgiving. AAA’s Marie Dodds tells KBND News, "Fifty-three million Americans including 746,000 Oregonians will be traveling over the river and through the woods for Turkey and all the trimmings this year." These numbers have rebounded to near where they were before the pandemic in 2019.


Oregeon Department of Transportation's Peter Murphy updates Your Town on the Ward-Hamby Roundabout. Now that the weather is colder, construction is slowing, but ODOT is preparing for the new single lane roundabout. Listen to the entire interview when Murphy outlines best practices for safe driving in inclement weather. 

On Your Town, Curative Lab's Blake Lackey and COCC's Jennifer Kovitz discuss the benefits of the rapid COVID-19 PCR test-- or Polymerase Chain Reaction test-- especially for the economy and for holiday travelers.


Oregon’s first no-cost rapid PCR testing site for COVID-19 is in Redmond. Deschutes County Health Services, Central Oregon Community College, and the Oregon Health Authority have partnered to offer the testing clinic at COCC’s Redmond campus. An appointment is required and can be made online or over the phone.


Testing is conducted Thursdays through Mondays, from noon to 7 p.m. and results for the rapid test are typically available within one-to-two hours. The clinic is open to anyone, including those needing a test for travel.


(Terrebonne, OR) -- Police say a driver who was using the shoulder on Highway 97 to pass another vehicle caused a crash that killed a driver. Oregon State Police say 58-year-old Karl Thompson was on Highway 97 near Terrebonne when he tried to pass a truck on the shoulder. He hit the front of the truck and went into oncoming traffic hitting an SUV driven by 33-year-old Jessica Shaw. Her vehicle was hit by a tow truck. Shaw died at the scene. Two other people were hurt. Highway 97 was closed six hours. The investigation continues.

A suspected drunk driver is accused of hit and run … and driving the wrong way while trying to flee the scene of the crash.   According to Bend Police, multiple witnesses called to report a rear-end crash, just after 6 last night, near Highway 97 and Badger Road. They told police the woman appeared intoxicated.  The responding officer saw the suspect driving toward his patrol car in his lane … she drove about a third of a mile before pulling over for police. 56-year-old Denise Lovejoy was cited for a list of charges … including DUII and reckless driving.

A building scheduled for demolition burned nearly to the ground, yesterday… in what investigators are calling arson.   Bend Fire responded to the abandoned site on Southeast Davis just before 11 a-m… and could see flames on the second floor.  The building has a history of repeated trespassers … fire investigators determined the blaze was intentionally set.

A southwest Bend home was destroyed by fire, yesterday morning.  When firefighters arrived, the house on Nugget Avenue was already fully engulfed in flames.  No one was home at the time, and the family dog made it out safely.  Bend Fire investigators say the blaze started with woodstove ashes placed in a paper bag next to the stove.  That bag ignited and flames spread to nearby furniture and carpet. 

Redmond City Councilor Jon Bullock has stepped down. Central Oregon Daily News reports he announced his resignation in a letter presented to Council, last night saying other priorities are taking more of his time, and he’s not able to dedicate the time needed to the city. Bullock was appointed to City Council in 2017 and was elected to his seat the following year. His term was due to expire in 2022. 

JW Terrry, Executive Director of COVO talks with KBND's Your Town about the opening of Veterans Village. On Veterans Day, COVO and Bend Heroes Foundation will celebrate the official opening of the shelter with a ribbon cutting and fly-over. Listen to the entire interview for details.

Starting today, you can buy Christmas tree permits for use on the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests. Permits can be purchased online and at some stores. Also, they are also available for pick-up at the Sisters Ranger District and Madras Chamber of Commerce offices. Individual Christmas tree permits are $5 each and households can purchase a maximum of five permits. 

In response to Redmond School Board’s request for local control over COVID precautions, Oregon Health Authority says the virus sets the timeline. As we reported last month, the Board sent a letter to OHA and Governor Kate Brown asking when local decision-making can return. Central Oregon Daily news provides the response letter from OHA Director Patrick Allen who says health officials agree there should be no change yet in school mask requirements-- partly because the vaccine was only recently approved for kids as young as five. Redmond Schools’ COVID dashboard shows 36 COVID cases currently in the schools: 26 students and 10 teachers. Central Oregon Daily News provides a PDF of OHA's response letter.

Construction begins this week on a new roundabout at the Ward-Hamby /U.S. Highway 20 intersection. Oregon Department of Transportation’s Peter Murphy says drivers won’t experience many delays at first. The roundabout is the County and ODOT’s solution after a number of fatal crashes at the intersection east of Bend. 


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